[collaboration with the most amazing @lovelylauraa, she's been an inspiration to me, and together, we created something extraordinary. Roxy and Reece deserve an ending.... so here it is.]
Life wasn't the mess it used to be.
I remember every moment of my tragic life and the events I pulled through. There was one thing however, that remained constant. Reece. From my very beginning to my unpredictable ends, he was always there. Over the years we'd grown to love each other's imperfections, choosing to embrace what once was and now is.
Six years, three months and two days. That's about how long I'd been in love with Reece. Which also counts back to the very moment I saw him.
I thought about this long and hard, with a tight smile. As I rang the bell to Reece's apartment, I realised he probably wouldn't be home yet. He'd been working on a movie, which thrilled me to the point I'd make him recite his lines during foreplay. His career being refreshed only meant I got to spend more time with him.
Without hesitating, I pushed my own key into the door. The key he'd given me, trying to reconcile after a fight.
"Hello?" I peered in, my eyes opening wide with horror, "Brienne!" I yelped.
Brienne simply smirked at me and waggled her fingers, "Did I scare you?"
"Of coutse you scared me, you're the living dead" I spat sarcastically, dropping my bag and keys near the door. I walked through to the kitchen, opening the fridge. My eyes scanned all the leftovers, mixed with sparkling water bottles and the odd bottle of champagne. I wondered why he'd have something so materialistic and decadent in his fridge. It's a celebration drink. Considering Brienne was always hanging around the apartment, I felt there was no need to celebrate.
She stormed into the kitchen behind me, "You're no better, You look like a h.ooker"
I looked down at myself, eyes reaching the floor. Leather jacket. Studded boots. Maybe she was right.
I shrugged, "Speaking of hookers, don't you think it's time you got a hobby?"
Brienne huffed, then coughed with exerting choosing not the hide the word "Sl.ut" sputtered within her fist.
"Takes one to know one"
She cackled loudly. The resemblance was that of a witch. My eyes turned to slits, thinking about her comment. I rushed to Reece's bedroom, slamming the door and pulling our some more presentable clothes from my draw.
"I've had enough of this...." She rolled off. It seemed like she was about to give me a speech. Which is why I cut her off before she got the chance. Quickly tugging my clothes on, I pulled open the door.
"No, I've had enough of this. You're standing in my way of happiness. And at this rate, I won't let you stand for long. I want you out. I want you out of my life, and out of his."
"Don't pretend this has anything to do with Reece. This is about you, not him." She yelled, finding her words bouncing back off the walls and returning to our ears.
I finally found my voice. "I love him. I love him more than anything. You're just looking for pity!"
She scoffed, giving her time to search for an argument. Her eyes lit up, signalling me that she's found something. I braced myself.
"You think he honestly wants to spend the rest of his life with you? I know my brother better than anyone. He may have convinced himself he's in love with you but he thought that about Haylie too. It's just like Haylie. He's just with you because the paparazzi is obsesssed with your relationship. You're convenient for him. And as soon as something serious starts happening... He'll be out the door and in some foreign country with the closest exotic looking bim.bo."
She glared at me for a moment, triuphantly. I felt utterly defeated, watching her bounce toward the front door and pull it open. On the other side of it was Reece, with a grin and a bag of take out food. I stared at it, wondering if food could even cheer me up.
"Hey Brienne" he said, always friendly to her. Like he had some sort of sick adoration. I pulled my dark thoughts back, choosing to let them linger rather than burst out.
"I was just leaving," she sniffed, making a face at me and leaving. She'd accomplished everything she wanted. Unlike me, who just stood there, in place.
Reece looked up at me, eyes wide. "Hey... did you guys just fight again?"
I didn't know what to say. So I walked to my bag, gathered my things and searched for my keys.
"Don't leave." He begs, grasping my wrists lightly. The force in his eyes and loving touch was enough to stop me, and keep me rooted to this spot, if only for a minute.
"I...Can't stay" I choked out, unable to hold back my sobs, letting a few fresh tears well in my eyes. I promised myself not to let them fall, blinking excessively to keep them inside.
“Why?” Reece yelled, pulling me closer to him and away from my bag. I couldn’t look at him, my eyes watering. “Roxy, you can’t ever leave me.”
“No, no” I said stubbornly, “Don’t pull that on me! How can I ever trust the fact that you’ll always love me? You’re Reece!” I exclaimed, determined to drag him onto the surface of reality.
He gritted his teeth, and I could sense the pure frustration radiating from him. “I’m different now.” He paused, “You’re just saying this because of whatever Brienne said to you.
“Maybe I’m saying it because I know she’s right” I grumbled, Brienne’s words still ringing in my ears. He stares back at me with the same look of frustration.
I felt warmth radiate from his hands and body. His skin on mine was as electric as ever. But I knew I had to stop this. Stop this fantasy of love before it goes any further.
"Maybe you and I just aren't cut out for dating"
We stood silent for a moment. I watched him, tried to read his face and only imagine the thoughts running through his head. He held his hands in his pockets, mind racing. Suddenly, he pulled one hand out, holding something small, knuckles white, hands almost shaking. I realised what it was, gaining a moment to think about it. It was a box. The measurements only large enough to encase a small ring.
“F.ck dating then, I want to marry you, Roxy”
"Is that…?" My eyes drifted over to the ring. He smiled slowly. "Are you…?"
My heart pounded wildly. Five seconds ago, I thought we were over.
Right then, I looked at him in a totally different light. He was everything I'd ever wanted. Erratic, loving, daring, kind, exciting. The moment was too good to be true. He was too good to be true. I couldn't believe this. Marriage is a promise. It's a promise to love one another forever. It's one I'd never even thought about. The idea of marrying him was extreme. I felt my hands shaking.
“So… Is that a yes?”
I squealed, forgetting all about what Brienne had said, and repressing all our bad memories, sharing the moment with him.
“Reece” I gasped, a few syllables escaping my lips, then returning to a solid, “Yes! Of course, yes, Jesus Christ…” I jumped toward him, letting him catch me in his arms. We shared an abrupt, yet, passionate kiss. When we broke, I gasped again, exclaiming, “The champagne in the fridge!”
Reece put me down gently, and raced over. He grabbed the bottle and popped the cork as fast as he could. He was excited. I was excited. I squealed with laughter, as the bubbles from the champagne exploded over the top of the bottle and sprayed us both. He took the ring from the box, and then took my hand. I felt tears run down my face as he slid it onto my finger.
Reaching for the glasses, Reece grabbed my hand and gave me the entire bottle. He then popped another open and drank from it.
"We are such alcoholics!" I chuckled, sipping from the bottle in my hand. I’d never actually referred to myself as an alcoholic before. But that was another great thing about Reece, I never felt ashamed to be myself around him. Things just came naturally, and for the first time, I was able to admit things I’d been ignoring for too long.
"Well, we celebrate in our own style," he said with a grin, bringing himself forward. I stared deeply into his eyes, looking far beyond the surface.
"I love you, Reece" I said, looking at him and then looking down at the sparkling new ring. It looked so out of place. I didn't deserve something so beautiful. I thought about the person it tied me to.
"I love you, Roxy"
A problem quickly formed itself in my head.
"When do we tell people? Or is this one of those 'never tell anyone' kind of deal?"
He raise one eyebrow almost perfectly, “Well, I don’t want to keep it a secret, if that’s what you’re suggesting.”
"I mean, the media is going to get all over this one. What if they start calling it a fluke? Or a shotgun wedding? What if women hunt me down for taking you off the market?" I said, without even a breath between words. My questions only began to worry me more.
“Roxy… Roxy” He said soothingly, gaining my indivisible attention. “It’s gonna be fine. We can just keep it on the down-low for a little while, then come out with it when we’re ready. I mean, they’re gonna say those things no matter what. They're the f.cking media after all. But we can tell them anyway that we want to tell them."
He always knew exactly what to say when I became frantic. When my fears caught up to me, he’d scare them away. When I need him, He’ll always be there.
I decided in that moment, that I would do the same for him. In fact, I’d do anything or be anything for him.
"Okay" I breathed deeply, watching his facial expression, "we'll just take it one step at a time"
I smiled finally, realizing that we were about to embrace the rest of our lives together.