I hated fighting, and up until this moment I had completely avoided doing it with Nate.
It had just happened so fast. One moment we were in his kitchen cooking dinner and laughing together, and the next we were so deep in to an argument I didn’t even remember what it was about. We just sat there, in silence, angry at each other.
The worst part about it was that I had actually started to believe he was the one. We had always gotten along so well. He was my best friend, and it seemed like I was his. I loved him. It’s what made this all so much more depressing and confusing.
Ironically enough, it was raining outside. I could hear every drop splatter on the window across from us. It was the only thing that kept me sane in this otherwise noiseless room. I refused to be the one to end it. It was stubborn of me, and even immature, but knowing that didn’t make it any easier to speak.
I could feel his eyes burning in to me, and the need to raise my gaze to meet his was strong, but I kept my eyes on the table. I didn’t want to see the look on his face when he ended it, which I knew was coming any moment. That’s what fighting did—it made people leave.
The memory of my dad walking out the front door when I was only 12 years old after a fight with my mom flashed in my mind, but I pushed it away. That was the last thing I needed to be thinking about right now. It would make the tears I had already felt burning the back of my eyes actually fall, and I didn’t cry. At least not in front of people.
“Alex,” he said, breaking the silence. I could hear the pure exhaustion in his voice. He was done. It was over. We were over.
I reluctantly raised my gaze to meet his. “I know, okay? I know.”
“What?” His voice was filled with confusion.
“We’re over, I know.” I stood up and headed over to the closet where he had hung up my jacket.
For a moment he didn’t move, but as I started to slide in to my coat, he shot up from the table and marched over to me. “We’re over?” he questioned. The anger in his voice confused me. This is what he wanted.
“Bye Nate,” I whispered as I turned away and walked out the door.
I was halfway to my car when I heard his voice calling my name. “Alex, wait.”
I stopped dead in my tracks, my knees feeling weak. I turned my body to face his, and he was running over to me. The rain was pouring down on us, and I knew I looked as big of a mess as I felt.
When he reached me, I could see the anger etched on to his normally beautiful features. “Why do you think we’re over?” he asked. His question seemed cruel, as if he needed me to say the words for them to be real. I didn’t want to say them. I didn’t want them to be real. But if this was over, I also wanted to get home, so I spoke.
“We fought. You didn’t want me anymore.” The tears behind my eyes burned even harder as they threatened to fall, but I refused to let them.
His eyebrows drew together in confusion. “You think we’re over because we fought?”
I nodded my head, and his hazel eyes softened. He ran his fingers threw his hair before he spoke again. “People fight, Al. But then we fight through it together. We fight for each other because we’re worth the fight. Our love is worth the fight. Don’t you know that?”
His words shocked me. I didn’t know that, but my chest suddenly felt warm at that confession of reassurance, and every previous feeling of doubt seemed to evaporate in that moment. The tears I had held back for so long were now streaming down my face. “I do now,” I whispered, and then his lips claimed mine.
Maybe people didn’t always leave.