Feb 1 2012, 05:00 PM
Live. Laugh. Love
Joined: 27-April 05
Member No.: 76887
This is a story I've written that I'm editing for my writing class. I would like some of your opinions on it so I can have the best story. Please point out things that don't make sense and you don't like. I can take criticism, so you don't have to hold back. Just to warn you, it's kind of long (like 10 pages). This is the part I've re read and edited. I'll post the rest when I've edited it, which will be hopefully some time in the next week.
“Alright. I'll see you later. Bye,” I called to my boyfriend Roger as I ran up the steps of UCLA, late for my acting class. Finally I bust through the doors of the classroom.
“There you are, Eve. I was wondering when you would show up!” exclaimed Professor Lopez.
“Sorry. Roger was late picking me up,” I replied apologetically.
“Just go up and stand by Riley,” he said. My heart began to flutter. Hearing his name made me feel like I was sixteen again. I put my stuff down and stood next to Riley. “We’re going to continue doing improv this week. Riley, you and Eve just had a huge fight and you’re trying to make up with Eve but she’s not having any of it. Eve, this is no ordinary fight. Riley really hurt you and you’re not about to forgive him. And go,” the professor said.
“Eve. You know nothing came from it! It didn’t mean anything,” Riley started
“Riley, just no. Go and leave me alone! You broke my trust,” I replied, getting into the Scene. Riley moved towards me and I pushed him away, turning my shoulder towards him. He placed his hand on my shoulder and forced me to turn around. He grabbed both of my arms and looked into my eyes.
“You are the single most important thing to me. I don’t know why I did it, but I did and I realize it was a mistake.” I was mesmerized by his big, brown eyes. “Please, can you just forgive me?”
Turing my head away, I replied “I’m sorry. You just hurt me too much and I can’t get over it. I’m sorry.” Riley dropped his hands. I started to turn around and walk off the stage when he grabbed me and kissed me. My heart started pounding and I couldn’t breathe. When Riley finally released me, I was in a daze.
“Alright. That was good. What did you think class? How did Riley and Eve convince you that they were a couple?” Professor Lopez said.
* * *
“How was class?” Roger asked as I got into the car after class.
“It was good. Riley and I did an improv about a couple fighting. He somehow ended up kissing me at the end.”
“You kissed another man? Did you enjoy it? Do you want to be with him now?”
“Roger, stop being irrational. It’s just acting. I’m going to have to kiss men, and possibly women, in my career. So you need to start dealing with it and stop getting jealous!” The rest of the ride home, neither of us talked.
When I got home, I went into the bedroom and called my best friend Kate and told her about class and what Roger said. “He needs to grow up. You really need to dump him. You have been talking about it, so why don't you get it over with?” she replied.
“It’s not that easy. I still love him. I don’t want to see him hurt. Plus, he’s one of my best friends and I can tell him anything,” I told her. There was a knock on my door. “Hold on a minute, Kate. Yeah?”
Roger popped his head in. “Do you want to go to Un Bello tonight?”
“Sure, what time?”
“Be ready by 7.” Roger leaves and closes the door behind him.
“I’m back. Roger just wants to go out to dinner tonight. The more I think about it, the more I don’t like how he reacted to me and Riley.”
“Good, you shouldn’t be with him. He’s so immature if he thinks he can control you like that,” Kate answered.
“Would it be bad if I did it over dinner? I don’t know. Ugh, this is such a hard decision. I mean, we’ve been together since junior year of high school. He knows everything about me.”
“That might be true, Eve, but you’ll find someone who treats you better and won’t freak out if you have to do on stage kissing or something. It seems like Roger doesn’t support you. Do you really want to spend your time being with someone who can’t even handle you doing your job?”
“Maybe you’re right. I don’t know. I have to go start getting ready for tonight.”
“Alright, let me know how it goes. Have fun. Bye.”
“Thanks, bye. I’ll call you later.” I debated what I should do the whole time I was getting ready for dinner.
* * *
Throughout dinner, Roger looked a little nervous. He kept fidgeting with his silverware; bouncing his leg up and down. Finally after the dishes were cleared away, Roger said, “I've been waiting for this moment since the first time I laid eyes on you. I've been ready to be your husband and I was waiting for the time you were ready to be my wife. I think that time is now.” He got down on one knee and took a little black box out of his pants pocket. “Eve, will you marry me?” He opened it and showed me a gorgeous diamond ring.
My jaw dropped. The normal chatter of the restaurant suddenly stopped when everyone turned and watched us. Oh my god! He proposed. “Roger. I... I...” I stuttered and my eyes filled up with tears. “I can't. I can't see you anymore. I’m so sorry.” I ran out of the restaurant and dialed Kate’s number on my cell phone. “Hey, I’m going to stay with you tonight. Is that ok?”
“Of course! Come over any time,” Kate said.
“I'll see you in ten minutes,” I replied. “And thanks.
“No prob,” Kate answered. I rushed home and packed a few pairs of clothes. Kate greeted me with open arms when I got her apartment. I dropped my stuff in the office, which was formally my room before I moved in with Roger, and let the tears I was holding back fall. “He proposed! I can't believe he proposed! I feel like such a *beep*!” I was crying so hard I could hardly talk. Kate put her arms around me and comforted me all night.
Finally around four- thirty, we went to bed. I was both physically and emotionally drained. I slept until nine, and even then I was exhausted, but I couldn't sleep anymore. I couldn’t get Roger’s hurt face out of my mind. I got ready and left the apartment to take a walk. I stopped, picked up a cup of coffee and found a nice bench by a park to sit on. I was deep in thought, wondering if I did the right thing.
“Hey Eve,” a male voice next to me said. I jumped, spilling some coffee on my hand. I swore, shaking it trying to get off the burning coffee, my heart pounding so hard that it felt like it was going to bust out of my chest. I whipped my head around and saw Riley there, leaning over the bench.
“Don't do that again! You scared me half to death!” I yelled at him.
“Sorry, I didn't think you were out of it. I’ll just leave you alone then.” He looked hurt and began to walk away.
“Riley. Stop. I'm sorry,” I called after him with a regret filled voice. He turned back towards me. “I've just had a lot on my mind.”
Concerned, Riley walked around the bench and sat next to me. “Is everything alright?”
“I don't know. I broke up with Roger last night. At the time I thought it was good and it was what I wanted. But now, I'm not so sure.” Riley put his arms around me. I leaned into his shoulder, enjoying the comfort he was providing me with. Riley rubbed my arm, listening to me recounting the occurrence. “Do you think I did the right thing?” I looked up at him.
“Honestly, I can't tell you if you were right or wrong. By the sound of it, there are both pro's and con's with the decision. Stop thinking with both your heart and your head, and just think with your heart. Close your eyes. Take deep breaths.” I did what he said and with each breath I took, my mind cleared more and more. Soon, the only thing I could hear was the slow beating of my own heart. Finally, the answer came to me.
“Thanks Riley. I think I did the right thing.” He quickly kissed the top of my head and gave me a quick squeeze before releasing me. Getting up, I tossed my now cold coffee into a nearby trash can and turned back to him. “I really appreciate you listening to me.”
Riley got up. “Any time.” His voice trusting and honest.
“How can I make it up to you?”
“Let me take you out to lunch today,” he told me. My heart began to flutter. Stop it! You just barely broke up with Roger. It's too early to be in another relationship. My heart took over my head and pushed the thought out of my head.
“Alright.” Riley led me to his favorite restaurant, Del's where we were quickly seated.
“I love it here,” Riley told me after our waitress took our order. “My dad would bring me here all the time when I was little. I was so small that my feet couldn't touch the floor and I had to sit on one of those plastic seats that you put in a chair so a child can use the table.” I laughed, imagining little Riley sitting in a chair with his dad across the table. “The owners considered me one of their grandchildren.” Tears glistened in his eyes as he continued. “About three years ago, they both passed away. They were the closest thing to grandparents I had.” Riley cleared his throat and blinked a few times, pushing the tears away.
“Riley, I'm sorry,” I said, with a face full of understanding while I slid my hand across the table and covering his. He turned his hand over and grasped mine tightly.
“Thanks,” he offered a small smile. “I try to come here as much as possible to remember them.” I nodded, thinking about home.
“There's a place back home that I love to go to because of the memories. It seems like it was where everything good happened.” I smiled to myself, thinking back to the little restaurant nestled in the Green Mountains overlooking Camel's Hump.
“One day can you bring me to that restaurant?” Riley asked, looking into my eyes. I was acutely aware of his hand clasped warmly around mine, our hearts finding the same rhythm.
I nodded as the waitress came with our food and I pulled my hand away from his. “I'm starving,” I said, his absent touch still warm on my hand as I began eating.
“Me to,” he replied, still looking at me. I felt my cheeks begin to burn and my pulse quicken. I haven't felt this way since Roger first asked me out five years ago. I tried to push the feelings out of my mind, but throughout lunch, he'd do something-- a gesture; a look-- which sent butterflies to my stomach.
We finished lunch and started walking back to our apartments. We stopped in front of the same building. “Do you live here too?” I asked him.
“Yeah, I just moved in last week.”
“Really?” I laughed. “What apartment are you?”
“You're on the floor below me! Mine's 225.” We walked in and entered the elevator. As he pressed the buttons, the door closed and the elevator lurched to life. It went up one floor, the door opened and Riley walked part way out and turned around so he was blocking the door from closing.
“Thank you for a wonderful day,” he said. I inched towards him.
“Thank you for listening,” I replied.
“We'll have to do this again some time,” he answered, leaning so close to me that his breath warm on my lips making them tingle with anticipation.
I nodded. “Soon.” He leaned in and kissed me. It felt more right than kissing Roger-- it felt like it was the most right thing in the world. I reluctantly pulled back. “Bye.” I started backing away.
“Bye,” Riley said, stepping back and letting the doors close. When the elevator started moving again, I smiled, replaying the day's events in my mind. When it reached my floor, I got off and hummed to myself as I walked to the apartment. I opened the door and checked the messages.
“Please Eve. Come back! I need you. I love you. I can't live without you!” Roger's pleading voice filled the air. My stomach dropped. I can't deal with this. I backed away from the phone, my keys and purse slipping out of my hand. I bumped into a side table, the lamp perched on top of it wobbled, threatening to topple over. I quickly grasped it and steadied it before I slid to the floor, my knees pulled to my chest, eyes staring off into space.
“Eve.” I heard my name in the distance. “Eve.” I heard it again, the voice sounded so familiar but I couldn't place it. “Eve! Are you alright?” I remember the voice now; it was Kate's.
I snapped to the present. “Kate?” I said, now fully aware of the tears streaming down my face.
“Oh my God Eve! You scared me when you didn't respond. Are you alright? What happened?” I focused on her concerned filled face, eyes wide with fear.
“Last night. Couldn't sleep. Coffee. Riley. Restaurant. Kiss. Roger. Answering machine.” That's all I could get out.
“Oh hun,” she said, wrapping her arms around me, knowing what was wrong, like best friends can.
“Call Riley.” I looked at her with pleading eyes.
“Where's his number?” I pointed to my purse. She walked over to where I dropped my purse and took out my cell phone. Scrolling to his number in my phone book, she quickly called him, asking him to come over right away as I returned to my distressed state.
When I finally recognized that Riley was there, I found myself lying on the couch, with a cold wash cloth on my forehead. “Eve, are you alright?” Riley asked when he realized my eyes were focused on him.
“He called and wanted me back Riley. He was begging me to go back! I just can't take it.” My eyes began to fill with tears and regret.
“Eve,” he said, kneeling by my head, stroking my hair. “You're stronger than this. This is what you wanted. You don't love him any more.” I looked in his eyes as he said it, feeling reassured--there was something in his eyes that made me trust him. I weakly nodded, pushing the tears back. “Take a nap. You'll feel better when you wake up.” I grabbed his hand as he got up to walk away and he turned around.
“Please say with me,” I begged, grasping his hand tightly. He noticed how upset I was and nodded so I sat up and made room for him on the couch. He sat next to me and I laid back down, putting my head on his lap. “Thank you,” I whispered as he stroked my hair while I drifted to sleep.
Feb 1 2012, 05:22 PM
Live. Laugh. Love
Joined: 27-April 05
Member No.: 76887
When I woke up, it was dark outside and Riley was still there, his head tilted back and eyes closed. Every time he breathed in, there was a slight snoring noise. I laid there for a bit, enjoying how close he was and listening to his snoring.
Kate tiptoed around us, trying not to wake us up. “Hey,” I whispered, making her jump.
“You're up. How are you?” She rushed over and sat on the Coffee table with a worried look.
“A lot better. I don't know what made me snap.” She sighed, relieved with my answer.
“It's alright. You don't need to explain anything to me.”
I sat up and stretched, rolling my neck around trying to uncramp it. “How long was I out?”
“Only a few hours.”
“That's good,” I whispered as I leaned back against Riley, resting my head on his shoulder.
“I have to be someplace. Do you want me to stay?”
I shook my head. “I'll be alright. Go. Have fun.” With a small wave, Kate slipped out the door. I watched Riley sleep for a few minutes until I brushed a stray piece of hair away from his face, stroking his cheek lightly.
Sleepily, he opened his eyes and smiled when he saw me. “Hey,” he murmured. “Did you have a good nap?”
I nodded. “Did I wake you up?”
“Yeah, but it's alright. I'd rather be woken up by you than anyone else.” I snuggled closer to him and he wrapped his arms around me.
“Thank you for everything,” I whispered in his ear.
“I'd do anything for you.” I smiled, relieved that I had another person in my life I could count on. There's something about being with him that makes me more comfortable than being with Roger. It's like nothing can go wrong with him here.
I heard keys in the lock and I expected Kate to slip through the door, but it was Roger. I jumped up, my body tight with suspicion. “What the *beep* are you doing here?” I yelled at him.
“Babe, what's wrong?” Roger asked, inching towards me, noticing Riley on the couch. “Is this man bothering you? I can easily take care of him,” He said in a big voice, cracking his knuckles in his palms
“No! He's not the problem. You are. Give me my keys back and get the *beep* out of here!” I held out my hand and he put the keys in it.
As he started walking to the door, he called over his shoulder, “I'd watch my step if I were you.” Then he opened the door and left.
Riley put his hand on my shoulder concerned. “You alright?”
I didn’t realize I was shaking until then. “I think I will be. This is the first step to be ok with my decision. I didn’t feel like I wanted to cry.”
“I'm proud of you.” Riley wrapped his arms around me and as I leaned into him, he put his chin on the top of my head.
“You shouldn't be. Whenever I'm around you, I feel safe, strong.” I cringed. “That was cheesy. I can't believe I just said that.”
Riley laughed. “Don't worry; I was thinking the same thing.” Heat rushed to my face.
“You're not afraid of anything.” I turned around, slid my arms under his and I pressed my cheek to my chest.
“Yeah right. If Roger came and confronted me, I'd put my tail between my legs and run.” I laughed. “I'm serious. I'm intimidated by big men. I was impressed when you stood up for yourself like that.” He kissed the top of my head.
“I'm just glad that's over with. I had a feeling he'd come back, but I didn't know when. I'm just glad that you were here when he did. Now I can forget about him and concentrate on something else.” I looked up at him and smiled.
“Like us?” I nodded. “Are you sure you’re ready for this? I don’t want to push you into something you’re not ready for.”
“I’m sure. I was ready to leave that relationship for a while. I just didn’t want to hurt Roger and I didn’t know how to break up with him without hurting him.” Riley put his finger under my chin and lifted it up and kissed me.
I'm move on with the next chapter of my life. No more thoughts of Roger. Just me and Riley. “You wanna go take a walk? I'm really energized from my nap.”
“Sure,” he replied, letting me go.
“Just let me grab a sweatshirt then we can leave.” I grabbed a sweatshirt and met Riley in the living room.
“Ready?” he asked. I nodded, grabbed my purse and walked us out, locking the door behind us and grabbing Riley's hand. We made our way outside and started walking. We were having a great time when a couple of gun shots ring out; Riley pulled me down to the ground with him. I covered my head and heard some glass breaking beside me. If Riley and I were standing right there, we would have been shot! I stayed down until Riley said it was OK to get up. We called the police and when they got there, we quickly told them what happened. We were escorted by a policeman to our building.
“Riley, will you stay with me tonight?” I asked when we reached my apartment.
He nodded. “Let me grab some stuff. I'll be right back up.” He gave me a quick kiss and walked back to the elevator. I unlocked my door and sat on the couch, waiting for Riley to return.
Time ticked by slowly. Fifteen minutes passed; thirty minutes passed. There was still no sign of Riley. I waited thirty more minutes, wondering if he was just doing something and needed some time. Finally I became anxious enough to wander down to his apartment and discovered the police were there. “What's going on? Why are you here?” I asked, struggling to get in. “Where's Riley?”
“Ma'am, please calm down,” the policeman who was standing in the doorway said, restraining me.
“Let go of me! I just want to see Riley!” My heart leaped to my throat. Why won't they just let me see him?
“Ma'am, he's at the hospital.” My stomach dropped and I stopped fighting him.
“What happened?” I asked, my face draining of color.
“It appears that he was attacked from behind when he was entering his apartment. The neighbors heard a struggle and called us. When we arrived at the scene, the attacker had fled. Mr. O'Connor was badly beaten.”
“Is he going to be alright?”
“I don't know. He's at St. Augustine's hospital.”
I ran towards the elevator, not even thanking the officer. I grabbed a cab and told the driver to rush to St. Augustine's. It was an eternity before the cab pulled up in front of the hospital and as soon as it stopped, I threw money at the driver and ran into the ER. “Where's Riley O'Connor?” I frantically asked the nurse behind the desk.
She typed something in the computer and clicked a few times. “Room 427,” she replied.
“Thanks.” I ran to the elevator and frenziedly pressed the button to go up. The elevator doors finally opened and I pressed level 4. My nerves got to me more and more with each passing floor. Is he going to be alright? Who could have done this to him? It's all my fault. If I hadn't asked him to stay, he wouldn't have left and gotten hurt. The elevator dinged, bringing me out of my thoughts. Looking up, I saw it was my floor so I got off and went to his room. I froze at the door, unable to continue. Bruises scattered his face and arms-- his right eye swollen shut and his lip split open.
“Excuse me, miss,” a nurse behind me said. I moved into the room and to the side so she could come him. Watching her, she checked his IV and heart monitor. “He's a lucky one,” she told me. “If the ambulance hadn't gotten there when it did, he might not have made it.”
“So he's going to be alright?” I looked at her with pleading eyes.
She sighed, “Honestly, I have no idea. He has a better chance here than he had at his house.” She looked at the clock. “'Cuse me.” She slipped out of the room.
I walked over to the bed and sat in the chair next to it. Grasping his hand, I was relieved with the warmth it gave off like he was going to wake up any moment. I brought it up to my cheek and closed my eyes. Tears streamed down my face. “I'm sorry,” I whispered. “I'm so sorry.” I pressed my face to the blanket lying over him and wept.
When I woke up, the sun streamed in through the window. I watched everything outside without moving-- birds played in a nearby tree; cars zoomed pass. The beeping from Riley’s heart monitor constantly reminded me where I was. I sat up and stretched one arm; the other hand was grasping Riley's tightly. I sat back and watched his face for some hint that he was going to wake up.
Nurses drifted in and out of his room, all trying to persuade me to go home and get some rest or go down to the cafeteria to get some food. I just shook my head and gave them a small smile. They wouldn't understand-- being with Riley was more important than my own health.
Day faded into night, and I hadn't moved from that chair. I would talk to him-- hoping to see a sign that he heard me, but his face stayed still. Night faded into day and again into night. Soon I forgot how long I've been there. One faceless day, a police officer came into the room and I looked up from the window. “Are you Eve Gilmore,” the officer asked me. I nodded, wondering what he wanted. “Do you know a Roger Miller?”
“Oh my God. He's my ex-boyfriend. Why?”
“We've determined that he was the man who attacked Mr. O'Connor.”
“You're sure he's the one?”
“Did you hear that Riley? They found him!” I kissed his hand. The police officer slipped out of the room, leaving me to celebrate with Riley. His heart monitor started beeping, and nurses and doctors rushed in pushing me out of the way. “Is he going to be alright?” I tried to ask.
“He's going into V-Fib. Get the paddles,” shouted one of the doctors.
“Come on Riley! Pull through it. I know you can. Remember, we have to go to Vermont to my favorite restaurant. Please! Do it for me,” I whispered.
“Get her away from here! Charge to 100,” the doctor shouted as one of the nurses tried to pull me out of the room.
“No! I have to stay here with him!” I fought her as I watched them begin to shock him, trying to shock his heart back to life.
“Charging,” replied one of the nurses.
“Clear.” Riley's body jumped as an electrical current ran through it. I looked at the monitor, but the line didn't jump. Tears began to well up in my eyes. “Charge to 150,” the doctor said.
“Charging,” the nurse replied again.
“Clear.” His body jumped once again, the line didn't change. I blinked and the tears came pouring down my face.
“Charge to 200,” the doctor said.
“Clear.” Riley's body jumped, but his heart didn't start. “I'm calling it. 14:34.”
“No!” I rushed towards Riley.
“I'm sorry,” a nurse said as everyone left.
“Riley. Riley! Please wake up. Please, I need you!” I cried into his chest. “To help me after? I will kiss thy lips; Haply some poison yet doth hang on them, To make die with a restorative,” I repeated from a scene we did in our acting class and shared with him one last kiss.