Can You Say that Again?

‘So there was a little bit of a pause in her words, but that could be a good thing, right?’ That was the illicit thought that raced through Jordan’s mind as he went through all of the possible explanations of what was happening in front of him. Forget the fact that his girlfriend of three years Allison was breaking up with him, that was something he could deal with. He just had to know why, and the fact that he didn’t as of yet was eating him up inside. Even as she continued to talk… “there’s just somethings I need to deal with on my…” Jordan was barely paying attention.

What if she’s met someone else? That’s it, Jordan thought to himself. He went through all of the people it could have been, whether or not he knew this new mystery man. Was he tall and dark, was he short and light? Was he a good guy, will he treat Allison as good as he did? ‘I bet it’s one of the big time football players from the school team,’ was a prevailing thought, and who could blame him. The football team just had a successful season and now that it was over they’d have more time to socialize. In the back of his mind Jordan could see Allison walking through the doors of the school library, turning quickly to look behind her as the big football player accidentally walks into her. They catch each other’s eyes as he helps her pick up all of her belongings, now scattered upon the concrete in front of the sliding doors. They exchange apologies and Allison has this gleam in her eye as he introduces himself.

“Hi, I’m Bradley,” the bulky football player would state to Allison. All football players had to be named Bradley, thought Jordan. It’s just a fitting name, at least for him. There was the high school football he’d played, but that didn’t compare at all to the strong collegiate players that he’d be competing with now, because there’s more competition there. Visions of Allison completely mesmerized by his sudden appearance makes her catch her breath as she could only do. But the resounding silence comes broken only by the invitation of “Bradley” for some coffee. Allison thinks about it for a second, but before the auditory acceptance could even come from her mouth, her feet were already moving towards him and the cafe.

“Jordan! Are you even lsitening to me?” Allison angrily scolds from the opposite side of the table. A quick jolt and Jordan re-focused his wandering gaze to Allison.

“Yeah, of course I am. Go ahead,” is his answer. Apparently not phased by the scolding, he immediately tried to go back to his vision, but it’s gone. Replaced by another lingering theory. ‘Did I forget her birthday?’ Wait, what’s the date today? It’s the 15th, isn’t her birthday on the 7th? His mind begins to berate himself because he totally forgot, he can’t even believe it.

The image in his mind is now of Allison sitting in her apartment, locked in her bedroom. The walls are a dark shade of red, but not as dark as the feelings in her heart. Somewhere, the look of longing can be seen in her longing stare. She looks over to her dresser, where her cell phone sits, idly mocking her every tear. ‘He didn’t forget,’ she re-assures herself, ‘he’s just planning my surprise party as we speak.’ The clock on the wall teasingly ticks every passing second away, and she can feel herself losing hope. She reaches for the phone, but then realizes that she shouldn’t have to call. Soon, the self-pity flowing through her veins turned into anger, and she begins to remember everything that he’s done to her.

Jordan’s mind can’t believe he could forget. ‘Damnit,’ he thinks to himself. ‘How could I be so stupid?’ Initial instinct tell him to apologize, and his lips begin to move, but are unable to produce any sounds. ‘How do you apologize for something as big as this? Definitely something from the heart, not a simply I’m sorry.’ His brain racks itself with different options, but each time one arrives it’s right back out. Concentration eludes him. Finally, he’s got the words. ‘Ally, I have been a jerk and could never excuse my behavior. There is no way that I should ever forget when your birthday is because every impotant day to you is important to me.’ Jordan was pleased with himself for finally having this thought. He’d prepared his mouth for the words…

“I’m sorry I forgot your birthday,” Jordan blurted out. ‘DAMN,’ he thought to himself. ‘What was that?’

Allison just stares at him. “What are you talking about, my birthday isn’t for another three months.”

“Nothing,” he replies.

“I can tell you aren’t even listening to me, Jordan. Forget it, I’m through trying to explain.” Hastily she stands and begins to walk away. No sooner than when she begins to stand, her arm is grabbed gently by Jordan.

“Ally, don’t go. I want to hear it all, if it means so much to you to tell me.”

Allison considers his proposal, then reluctantly sits down for another try. “That is the first sincere thought I’ve gotten from you in weeks.”

Jordan pauses, looking around. All he can think about is the fact that she wants to explain the situation. ‘She still loves me, she just can’t be with me anymore. Her parents didn’t think too much of me before. Maybe they’re influencing her to dump me.’ Convinced that’s the reason, Jordan sits back down himself.

He pictures walking to the door of Allison’s home and knocking… no, pounding on the door. As the door flies open Jordan forces himself into the main foyer. His determination and his bold attitude win over her parents as she comes walking down the stairs and proceeds to fling herself into his awaiting arms. Allison tells him how happy she is that he’d come to her home and talked her parents into liking him.

“Now we can be together forever,” she whispers excitedly into his ear as they hold on tight to their hug. Jordan loses himself in the hug…

“Jordan? Jordan… JORDAN!!!” The third time, Allison is screaming basically at the top of her lungs. A few people hanging around the park look at their table in awe as Jordan’s thoughts disappear and all he sees is a furious Allison is raging, turning red right in front of his face.

“Huh? I’m sorry, sweetie… what’d you say?” Jordan says dumbstruck by the force in her voice.

“That’s it, Jordan, we’re over…” Allison stands and storms off, but Jordan remains on her tail.

Jordan finally catches her close to the parking lot. “What is it? What’s wrong? Why are you doing this?”

“Stop, Jordan… you’re just embarassing yourself.”

“No,” Jordan continues, pleading now. “Tell me why, at least… you owe me that much.”

Allison stops in her tracks. She turns, some tears now coming from her eyes. The watery gaze she gives Jordan has a lot of emotion implanted into it, but a simple nod of the head is all she gives him before opening her mouth to speak.”You want to know, seriously? I’m done with you Jordan because you DON’T LISTEN!!!”

And with that final sentiment, she gets into her car and pulls away, leaving a bewildered Jordan to stare at absolutely nothing at all.

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