The fact remained, this was stressing me out. I knew what I should have been doing about now. Having a cup a tea and getting on with my revisions. But it was half past eight when I got there to be met at the door by his toothy brother, Angus.
He was suppose to be at the Uni, but there he was giving me the eye that he was watching me. Naturally, his mum was so giddy and going on how much I'd become a lady since she'd last seen me.
She made over me, a bit. Still no, Will.
"Is Will home?" Wasn't like he was there to greet me.
"Go on up." She handed me some warm brownies on a platter. "I'll bring you two a brew."
I sighed as she gave me a pat while the two watched me steady myself up the steep stairs. I felt as if the pit of my stomach was so topsy turvy. No way could I down one of these gooey brownies.
Finally, I tapped on the door. Nothing.
"Jesus, Will, its me." I murmured, hoping they couldn't hear me from downstairs. Were they still watching?
Finally, he opened the door and stood there staring as if he could barely stand to see me. For a moment, I thought..this is it. We'll forget it. Just act as if we didn't know each other. He was so bleak. It was as if our friendship was really dead.
I put the platter on his desk.
"What's that for?" His voice was dull.
"You're mum sent them with me." What did he think? I'd baked them myself.
He nodded as if maybe he'd thought I was romantic after all, but he knew I wasn't.
The quiet hung on. He pressed his lips tight as if he was going to talk but then he wasn't. He hugged himself as if it were impossible to begin.
"Look...I got to thinking." He spilled, but then he was still thinking, obviously by that squint of his. Finally, he turned his back to me. "You've done it before, hadn't you?"
"Intercourse?" That what he meant?
I really wished I hadn't heard the question and responded with THAT QUESTION. I felt a little numb, perhaps dizzy. Why did he bring it up?
I sat on the wobbly bed, not meaning too, yet I felt stuck. I didn't really want to stand up to his questions.
He looked at me then as if I was not suppose to be sitting there.
"What of it?" Now I was cold. "You, need'n be a ..." Oh, I couldn't say a bad thing about him. He was right. I was awful. So awful. "Its not a big deal." I winced.
"Yes, it is, Bex." Now he plopped himself next to me as if he might console me. "You, should have told me."
His old sweater touched my shoulder. Honestly, it was good to have him near, but for how long? Suddenly, I felt all on my own. I stared at the homemade brownies thinking they would turn stale too. As I looked at him, I knew he must hate me?
"Who was it?" He looked me in the eye as if he needed to dissect my past before we could go on.
"You, don't know him." I managed to say. Besides, he would think it foolish. God knows, Will would never do anything foolish..except be with me.
"Who? I want to know." He pressed so. I could smell he'd already gotten into the brownies before they were even cooked. He got up and began to pace.
"God knows, I don't mean to bully. Really." He shook his head. "I'm worried about you, Bex." He hugged himself as if he looked down at me like I was the misfit. "You're are an iceberg."
I winced hard as if that was rubbish.
"You're the one being cold." I was certain I did a lot more work than he did during our so called night of passion.
"You'd feel better if you told me." He was right back where he wanted to be. Holding my hand this go around. Touching each finger as if he'd somehow surround me with love. Even if I didn't believe it.
"No..no it would not make things better." I looked him in the eye and withdrew my hand.
"Who was it?" He pried.
"Someone in the carnival, last summer." Maybe that would be enough to keep him quiet.
"A carnie! Are you out of your freak'n mind, Bex!" He exploded. There he was up again, with his little angry dance.
I gritted, wishing he would just leave it alone. No, he jumped up in a tizzy as if this was way too much to digest.
"You, didn't even know him! Obviously." He hugged himself. "Just gave yourself to a filthy carnie? Is that it?"
"He wasn't like that." I don't know why I said it. But Will did make me feel so low. "He might have been a gypsy, but I think he was from France."
"A frenchie!" Now he was really scowling. "And a gypsy!" He squinted so as if did disgust him.
Just when I was about to make a run for it, his mum was at the door with the tea. I wasn't going anywhere, after all.