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“Say whatever you think you need to say,” Gillian said under her breath. “And then leave me alone, Jake.”

“Okay.” I adjusted my watch. “I honestly think you’re the most insane and infuriating woman I’ve ever met. I knew from the moment you gave me a tour of my own goddamn apartment that you were a special brand of psycho.”

“Okay, you know what?” She looked up and her eyes met mine. “Don’t say whatever you think you need to say. Just leave.”

“I miss the way you fuck me.”

“Oh, be still my beating heart.” She hissed. “How could I ever be okay with letting you go after hearing that?”

“I figured I’d start with honesty.”

“How about starting with transparency instead?” She narrowed her eyes at me. “Where do you go every three weeks? Why is that we can never meet up on those weekends? And why do you always take your phone calls in another room and change the subject when I ask about it?”


“Why is it that every time we’re on the verge of getting closer—every. single. time., you shut me out and act as if I can turn off my feelings as easily as you can?”

I stepped back. I’d seen her angry before, seen her damn near on the edge of lividness, but the look on her face right now was beyond different from that. It was pain.

“Those flowers don’t make up for you being an asshole, Jake.” Her voice cracked. “I don’t care how beautiful they are. And neither does this.” She opened a drawer and pulled out the watch I’d given to her and threw it to me.

“You don’t have to give this back.”

“I want to give it back,” she said harshly. “I want you to give it to a woman who can deal with you treating her heart like a goddamn yo-yo. So, like I said earlier...Say your final words and leave.”

“I’m not leaving.”

“Well, I will. Hurry up.”

Her roommate noisily opened a huge bag of potato chips and sat up on the couch, watching us intently like we were her entertainment.

I rolled my eyes at her and faced Gillian again. “Can I talk to you, in private, please?”

“Right here is fine.”

She pointed at the clock on the wall. “Five minutes.”

“Fine.” I held back a groan. “I do miss the way you fuck me, and I miss the way I fuck you, too.” I stepped closer to her, crossing into the kitchen. “And if you weren’t crying right now, I might believe that you want me to leave you alone.” I closed the gap between us and wiped her tears away with my fingertips. Then I returned the watch to the drawer.

“Don’t touch me...” she said, but she didn’t move back when I wiped another stream of tears away.

“I don’t intend to hurt you, Gillian,” I said softly as she turned away. “And I think you should know by now that I do have feelings for you.”

“You have one hell of a way of showing it.”

“Gillian...” I grabbed her hands, entwining them with mine until she looked up at me again. “I don’t usually let people get close to me because they always disappoint me in the end. Always.”

“What happened to ‘neither of us can predict the future?’ I believe it was you who said that.”

“I’m not done talking.” I pressed a kiss against her lips. “The three-week thing is personal. It’s something I’ve never had to answer to anyone about, but...” I looked into her eyes. “We can discuss it later if you’d like. You think I’m fucking another woman when I can’t meet you those weekends?”

She nodded, looking completely convinced.

“Well, I’m not. It’s only been you since we met.” I let one of her hands go and ran my fingers through her hair. “As crazy as you drive me sometimes, I don’t want to lose what we have.”

“Outside of great sex,” she said, her voice completely hoarse. “What do we have, Jake?”

“Whatever it is, it’s a mess, but I like it.” I looked right into her eyes. “That said, I honestly don’t want us to argue anymore.”

“Ha!” her roommate snorted, making both of us turn around, making us both realize she was still watching.”

“Sorry,” she said, faking a cough. “My allergies are just awful this year.”

I gave her a blank stare and turned around, refocusing on Gillian. “I don’t enjoy arguing with you and I’m s—” The word stalled on my lips. “I’m...”

Her eyes lit up and her lips turned up into a small smile. “You’re what, Jake?”

“I’m sorry,” I said, and before she could make a spectacle out of it, I continued. “For not treating you right. Yes, I will do better. If you let me.”

“I think that’s as good as an apology as you’re going to get from him, Gil.” Her roommate spoke from the couch. “I would be okay with you giving him one more chance based on that, especially since you say the sex is so amazing.”

Gillian cheeks turned red as she ignored that comment and looked up at me. “Is this the part where you whisk me into my bedroom and make love to me?”

“No, this is the part where I ask you to come fly with me.”


“Now. This morning.”

Her smile faded. “I can’t.”