Home > Sweet Little Memories (Sweet #3)(6)

Sweet Little Memories (Sweet #3)(6)
Author: Abbi Glines

Heidi was clapping happily when I rejoined them. “May did a cartwheel.” Her elation was welcome and blinding. “She’s been trying for weeks. Practice, practice, Ms. Tracey had said. It worked.” The pure joy for her friend’s accomplishment reminded me that there was a perfect untarnished soul after all—Heidi’s.

LATER THAT EVENING, AFTER SPENDING all day with Heidi, I walked into Stone’s empty apartment. I’d been torn about returning because it was obvious he didn’t want to see me. He wasn’t in his apartment now and my things were still in the extra bedroom. I thought about staying until he returned to face him. I wondered if he would talk to me and maybe even fight for us after he had time to think.

Or I could save my heart from breaking further, pack up and move. I could find a small studio apartment just outside of town where the rent was cheaper. If Geraldine wanted me to continue working for her I would. Geraldine would be a constant reminder of Stone and that be painful. But over time I should heal enough to survive him.

There was a good chance Geraldine would want me to leave. She adored Stone. If she had to choose between us she would choose him and I expected that. I wanted her to—she was all he had.

I switched on the light and let the loneliness of the empty apartment sink into me. My happiest moments had happened here. Our laughter had echoed through the halls. So had my cries of pleasure. Stone was everything I could have ever wanted in a man. It was painful to think that as quickly as I found love, it was snatched away. My relationships were cursed. Having my heart broken would never happen again because I’d never get close to another man.

I hadn’t eaten anything but half of a turkey sandwich for lunch. Going into Stone’s kitchen seemed wrong now. I didn’t feel welcomed much less that I could eat his food. My appetite left when Stone walked away from me anyway.

I walked down the hall and into the room he’d given me to use. To get my mind off things, I went about my evening routine of undressing, bathing, and then going to bed. I laid there staring at the ceiling making plans for the next day. I decided that after visiting Heidi tomorrow, I’d look for a new place to stay. Living in Stone’s apartment without him here would be too painful. The ache in my chest grew unbearable as the silence surrounded me.

When I finally closed my eyes, the doorbell rang through the apartment causing me to almost fall out of bed from the startling unexpected sound. Untangling myself from the covers I finally managed to get my feet on the floor and went to see who was at the door. I had gone to bed early but it still seemed late for visitors. I could care less that I was wearing my pink threadbare pajamas. I doubted I would open the door anyway.

The peep hole was taller than me and I had to stand on my toes to see who was there.

Shay stood outside with a box in one hand and a bag in the other. There was someone behind her, but I couldn’t see who. Stepping back, I unbolted the door and opened it.

“I was about to start beating on the door. What took you so long?” She said as she brushed past me and walked inside.

“Are you good with this?” Chantel watched Shay sashay in but stayed at the door. The worried frown on her forehead didn’t cause a wrinkle. Either she had amazing skin or she had already started Botox injections.

“Doesn’t matter if she is or isn’t. I’m not leaving. I have donuts, some fancy ass macarons, and a bag full of tiny sandwiches that rich bitches eat with their tea. We’re eating all this shit, drinking Stone’s whiskey, and talking about the bastards in this world.”

I turned back to Shay and she held up the items in her hand. “Might as well accept this. It’s happening,” she told me.

I wasn’t hungry, but this was a good distraction. I wouldn’t be alone and the apartment wouldn’t echo in the silence.

“Come on in,” I said to Chantel as I stepped back so she could enter.

“Chantel won’t eat the food. Does Stone have carrots and water?” Shay’s tone was sarcastic so I didn’t respond. Instead, I caught Chantel rolling her eyes.

“I’ll take some vodka if he has that.”

“And her skinny ass will be drunk after one shot,” Shay added. “Now, when is the dumb bastard coming back?”

I didn’t have to ask who the dumb bastard was. However, I didn’t like the title bastard being attached to Stone’s name. I didn’t correct her because I realized it was just how Shay spoke.

“He didn’t say. But I’m not staying around to find out.” There, I told someone. My leaving was real now and not just in my thoughts.

“Damn,” Chantel said.

Shay dropped the bag in her hand and then opened the box to pull out a donut. She held it in front of my mouth. “Open,” she commanded. For fear she’d shove it on my face if I didn’t, I opened my mouth and she inserted it. “Now eat.”

She walked toward the living area after picking up the bag of sandwiches. “Chantel, get the alcohol,” Shay called out.

“What do you drink?” Chantel asked me.

I shook my head and took the donut out of my mouth. “I don’t want to drink.”

“I don’t care! You are drinking,” Shay replied loudly.

Chantel shrugged. “You might as well pick your poison or she will.”

I honestly didn’t know what I wanted to drink. I wasn’t hungry. The donut in my hand didn’t interesting me.

“I don’t know.” My reluctance to drink was making this harder than it had to be.

Chantel gave me a brief nod. “I’ll pick it. Sit and eat.”

I watched as she perused Stone’s bar. I couldn’t help but worry about them using his things, but they seemed at home here. Letting them inside might have been a mistake. Stone didn’t want me here much less other people. I didn’t think it was possible to get Shay to leave though. She was determined. The best thing I could do was drink, eat, fulfilling her request quickly so she’d leave.

Taking a bite of the donut, I followed Shay into the other room.

CHANTEL WALKED INTO THE ROOM carrying bottles of Grey Goose, Makers Mark, and club soda. She sat them on the table and went back for the glasses. I stood there watching as Shay opened the boxes, taking out a chocolate pastry then began eating. “Sit. Relax, bitch. Don’t stand there nervous, he’s not here. This is what he gets for running off.”

Shay sank onto the sofa and propped her feet up on the coffee table. Stone’s furniture was expensive. Sitting on it made me uncomfortable. But there was no asking her to remove her feet from the furniture—she was doing what she wanted.

When Chantel returned with glasses and ice, Shay pointed at the vodka. “Fix her something please. She’s so uptight she can’t sit.”

I slowly bent my knees and sat on the rug beneath me. I couldn’t bring myself to drink and eat on his furniture.

Shay rolled her eyes at me and Chantel handed me a vodka soda. “Drink up,” she said cheerily.

I wrapped my hands around the cold glass and I looked at it for only a second before taking a long swig. Shay was right. I was uptight and needed to relax.

Shay clapped. “Bravo! Now eat a sandwich or ten. They’re tiny as hell.” Shay glanced over at Chantel. “You could use ten or so sandwiches yourself.”

Chantel plopped on the sofa and curled her legs underneath her. It was impressive considering she had legs as long as most people were tall. “I’m drinking my calories,” she replied. “Did you get in touch with Fiona? Is she coming?”

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