376 - Emma
It was surprisingly easy to convince Jesse to agree with me going out tonight. Maybe it's because he trusts me, maybe it's the sparkly new ring on my finger that I'm still getting used to, but it's good to be out of the house and in an enviroment like this for a while.
I knew there was a big chance I'd run into Lucien, and maybe that was even more of a reason for me to decide to go, but I was still surprised I actually did run into him. It's a big venue, and there's quite a few people.
We don't talk much, just stand in the crowd together, sipping our beers and enjoying the music. They play some new songs, followed up by old ones. I remember when I played some of them vividly. When I close my eyes, I can even see the exact spot where Lucien and I parked our car to watch the sunset.
The melancholy takes over me for a second, and I catch myself just in time before I reach for Lucien's hand.
He doesn't seem to notice, luckily, too focussed on the music.
Being here is nice. For a while, I don't feel like the adult I've been pretending to be, the serious lawyer-turned-professor, sudden step mother to a six year old and since yesterday, engaged to be married.
I haven't told anyone yet, not even Kenna. I don't think I can, because every time I think about it, even so much as glance at the ring, my heart almost pounds out of my chest.
I remember when we were in Bamburgh, and we talked about the future. About how young girls in my school always knew exactly how they wanted their wedding to be, and how I had no clue if I even wanted to get married.
I remember how, as I told Lucien this, I started to realise that if getting married meant spending every last minute with Lucien, I'd be down to do it.
Now, it terrifies me, knowing I'm going to be spending my life with the same person until I die. And that might not be a good sign, or it might just be my anxiety talking.
No matter what the reason is, I just know I can't tell people yet until my mouth stops drying every time I even try to say the word 'engaged', or until my hands stop shaking when I see my engagement ring.
"I'm going to get us another beer," Lucien tells me when the music dies down as the lead singer introduces another new, unreleased song.
I just smile and nod, watching him walk to the bar. I could just run right now, leave the venue, go back home to my fiance in his bed.
Because as soon as I ran into Lucien at the hospital, I started to have doubts. I'm not sure if I had doubts before that moment, but I sure as hell know I have them now.
I can't be with Lucien, because we didn't work out, we apparently weren't meant to be. So why does he make me second guess every decision I've ever made every time his name pops into my brain, which is a lot more than it should?
He's just so... effortless. No matter where he goes, he just seems to blend in and stand out at the same time. He has a charisma like I've never seen before, able to win everyone over just by talking to them for a minute.
"Here you go," he smiles as he hands me another one of those plastic cups.
"Thanks," I smile back, my mouth a little dry. The ring on my finger seems to weigh my entire hand down as I lift it up to my mouth. "Shouldn't you be with your friends?"
He shakes his head, that same old cheeky grin on his face. "They're hardly my friends, and like I said - I hardly know Mike well enough to cry in front of him, which I will do if they play that one song..."
"I know exactly which one you're talking about," I can't help but chuckle, "and I bet they're going to play that last."
"Sounds like I'm going to be stuck with you until the end of the show, then," I give him a soft shove, the move feeling so natural yet so surreal that it sends tingles down my spine as my body touches his.
"This one," the previous song has ended, and the lead singer, "is about heartbreak, and about exes and love. Because, let's be real, it fuckin' sucks, but at least we get to write songs about it, eh?"
I glance at Lucien and he glances back, and we both grin. Because of the situation, the irony, but also because secretly I think we're both happy we don't have to hate one another anymore.
Sure, he still broke my heart, but we've talked about it and I'm willing to move past it if that means we get to be friends. I liked my life better with Lucien in it, even before we started dating, and beating ourselves up over a lost love won't make either of us any happier.
The song is upbeat, yet the lyrics are quite depressing if you pay attention to them - just what the band must have meant for the song to sound.
Lucien has turned his attention back to the stage, and while I've done the same I can't help but shoot a few glances in his direction.
He looks relaxed, happy even. After the song ends, the band exits the stage and the crowd immediately starts screaming for an encore.
I'm too lost in the moment to join in, trying very hard not to look at Lucien too much, sipping my beer and feeling the bass of the screaming crowd move through me. If this is what it's supposed to be like, the two of us, I think I can live with that.
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