Sometimes he was so close and other times so faraway from her. She supposed the past still haunted him but whenever she tried talking about it, he always dismissed the topic saying he was just looking forward for a better future, a future with her.
He told her that he was glad that she had never left his side, in both easy and difficult times, but she wanted him to know that she was more than glad to be around him. Whenever he was around, she just couldn't take off her eyes off him and the way she was all praises for him made her friends suspect that she was in love. She surely loved him and had always loved him. It had started with mere friendship and along with time, it has grown into something stronger and purer than that.
Many-times, when they made love, he addressed her by his ex's name and that made her wonder whether she was merely a substitute for his ex, but she brushed away all doubts assuring herself that he was trying hard to get over his past, real hard. She knew it wasn't easy for him to give away his heart once again, not at all easy after a bad relationship. His ex had dumped him for riches and comfort. However, it appeared like he had started trusting her and was thinking about taking another chance. She hoped for the best.
"Hey, listen...I want to tell something, really important. It will surely surprise you. Shall we meet at the coffee shop that's near your office? 6'o clock should be fine?" He sounded really excited and she supposed finally he was going to tell her whatever she wanted to hear from him. She hoped he would tell her that he loved him.
She agreed and after hanging up the call, she couldn't help but jump around. She was happy... really happy.
When the clock showed 5:30, she brushed her hair and applied a coat of lipstick. She admired her reflection in the mirror. She had been the barbie doll of her college until his ex showed up. Nevertheless, she had always managed to get boys attention without even trying.
He was late, rather she was too early. She sipped-in the hot chocolate from her cup while she waited for him. She emptied her cup but he hadn't shown up. She wondered what he was up-to. She started humming a random tune and scribbling on the spare tissues that were on the table. She wrote, "I love you, too" on the last tissue.
Finally, he came and what she saw surely surprised her, but not the kind of surprise she was expecting. His ex waited at the door, while he walked inside. Before she could say or ask anything, he said, "Guess what? She came back to me. She told that she should have never left me". She didn't know what to tell, but managed to say, "Congrats!"
He asked, "I knew you would be glad. You always knew my heart wasn't with me, didn't you? It never would have worked between us. I love her, only her".
Fighting back the tears, she said, "Yes, I understand".
She left him with his ex who wasn't his ex anymore. He hadn't even asked her for a coffee. On the way out, she dumped the tissue into a bin. She realized, after all she was only a substitute...