"I love you! Why is that so hard to understand?" She was yelling at me again. This was nothing new. It's the same one-sided argument as always. "I've been telling you I love you since we were fucking freshmen in high school! Now, look at us! We're in our twenties, living together like an old married couple! And, yet, you refuse to say three simple words to me." she was growing frustrated. I could tell by the way her hands went to her face, rubbing her temples, pinching the bridge of her nose, running through her shoulder-length hair. She was losing steam because I wouldn't contribute to this conversation. "I know you love me. Why can't you just say it? Reassure me. We've been dating for five years, living together for two. Don't you think it's a little overdue?"
"I don't know what you expect from me, Jane."
"God, Tucker. I know you're not that dense." She shook her head before looking at me again. "It's only what I've been asking for, for years. I want you to say 'I love you, too.'"
She paused. Left her sentence open for me to interject. Instead, I said, "But if you already know what is the big deal?"
"The big deal is that you can't or won't - I don't even know anymore - say it back. It's nice to hear how much somebody cares about you. But, whatever. If you don't want to say it, fine. I'm done. I'm not going to keep pushing you until you say those three terrible words. You wouldn't mean it by then anyway. Plus, I'll probably end up resenting you for it."
She left the room then. I stood firm in the living room of our apartment. I watched dumbfounded as, upon her return, she put on her coat. "What are you doing?" of all the times we've had this argument, this was the first time she was leaving.
"Putting on my coat." She finished buttoning up her coat and ran her hands through her hair so it wasn't under the collar.
"I can see that. Why?"
"I'm going out." She stood there looking at me. Once again giving me the opportunity to jump in and fill in the gap with the words she wanted to hear. But, I couldn't. so, sighing, she turned away from me, heading for the door.
I let her go. If this was what she wanted I could give it to her. As the door shut, I called, "Just be careful." I don't know if she heard me or not.
I see him as soon as I enter the coffee shop. He's in his signature pastels - pale pink button down and jeans today - at our usual table, two cups of coffee already in front of him. He's started speaking before I've even pulled out my chair. "Ah, so Miss Janey wants you to say those three ity, bity words again?" He showed me just how ity bity they are with his fingers, pinching his thumb and forefinger together until they're about an inch apart. "And, let me guess… you didn't say it back."
"Yes, but -"
"No, this is how many times this month already. I had a date with Brandon tonight and I canceled to help you work your shit out. Shit, that by the way, I've been telling you to get over years ago."
"I'm sorry, but she left this time."
"Left? No, shit. Well, good for her."
"Chris, you're supposed to be on my side."
"No, I just have more loyalties to you since I've known you since we were in diapers. Plus, you could do more physical harm than she could. In all honesty, I think you're an ass for not telling her you love her. I don't understand why you don't just say it. She's been saying it to you since she was fifteen."
"Fourteen," I mumbled.
"She first told me she loved me when she was fourteen. I was fifteen. It was before we stared dating."
"All the more reason for her frustration now. If I was her I would have dumped your ass a long time ago."
"I just can't say it. And it's not that I don't… care about her. I do, but this way she's free to go whenever she pleases. If I say those words to her she'll just end up hating me. It would ruin what we have. It's better for her. This way, she has no tie to me but her own. She wouldn't regret it if she chose to leave."
"So, it's not really that you can't say it, but your won't?" I shrugged, not looking him in the eye because deep down I know he's right. I am an ass. I meant what I said, but I don't necessarily want her to leave. "Have you ever told Jane this?"
"No, why would I?"
"Maybe because this explains your major problems. It's amazing how you can say you love her wit Hough actually telling her you love her. You say that if you say it, it'll ruin your relationship, correct?" I nodded, unsure where he was going with this. "Well, don't you think it's having the same effect by not saying it? I mean, she left. She's never walked out on you like that. Usually you both just take up your respective corners and cool off before you make up. This has got to mean that she's sick of your shit."
"Well, how do I fix it?" He stared at me, eyebrows raised. Right, stupid question. Sighing, I finished my coffee before rising to get another.
I had been sitting on the couch for hours. To say I was nervous was an understatement. I was anxious beyond belief. Fidgeting, biting my nails, it took all my energy to keep from bouncing in my seat. At around midnight, she finally walked through the door, I stood up when I heard the door click shut. She barely even spared a glance in my direction as she passed. "How was you night?"
"Fine." We were in our room by her dresser.
"That's nice." I was about to start in on my speech, but promptly snapped my mouth shut when she spun sharply around, eyes flaring. My arms instinctively reached out to steady her and fell limply back to my sides when she started speaking or rather yelling.
"Really, Tucker? How was my night? How can you be so fucking dense? Is it really so hard to believe that somebody love you?"
"God, Jane! I had something I wanted to tell you, but you're hell bent on that train of thought aren't you? I know you love me alright? It's just a little hard to comprehend given who my parents are! Do you understand that they despise each other, that they haven't had a civil word with one another the whole twenty-one years I've been alive? But, hey, that's love, isn't it? Let's not forget the affairs my dad had with each new secretary and Mom's love of liquor! The snide comments made just loud enough for everybody to hear at the dinner table! Is that what you want?"
"We're not your parents, Tucker."
"Well, what about yours then? Statistics show that love no longer exists. And in the rare occasion that it does show up, it dissolves and fades away, leaving nothing but devastation and hatred in its wake. Look at the odds, Jane. Divorced parents and a hopeless marriage, it's in our blood to fail. We were doomed the moment feelings got involved. Statistics don't lie."
"You, bastard! How dare you bring my parents into this! You forget, my parents are happy now! Happier than they ever were with each other! Both have found love again! It's not my fault that your parents are the way they are! We were never doomed until you decided we were!" She turned back to face the dresser, yanking open drawers and pulling out clothes.
'What are you doing?"
"I'm done. I can't do this anymore, Tucker. I can't wait around for something that I'm never going to get."
"I love you." I whispered. She stilled. I gently grabbed her arm and spun her around to face me. "I love you."
She slapped me. Hard. Right across the face. "That's a low blow, Tucker!" She was going to say more from the look of it, but suddenly she was pinned between the dresser and me. I'm not sure who initiated it, but we were kissing roughly. I couldn't tell if she was pushing me away or pulling me closer. Her hands were fisted in my shirt. And then clothes were being thrown. Disappearing from sight.
I woke up later. It was still dark out. Rolling over, I realized the bed was empty beside me. I sat up and when my eyes finally adjusted, I saw her. She was sitting in the chair across the room. "Hey."
"What are you doing up? It's early. Why don't you come back to bed?"
"I… can't." Her voice broke. I got out of bed and pulled on a pair of sweat pants. When I got closer I could see she was crying - for awhile if the tear streaks were any indication.
"Babe, what's wrong? What're you doing over here?" I knelt in front of her, crossing my arms on her knees and resting my chin there.
"I was watching you sleep. And thinking."
"And, I still think I should leave." Glancing beside the chair, I saw her duffel bag as it all sunk in.
"What? Why? I gave you what you wanted! I told you I loved you and you're still leaving?" I stood up so abruptly, I nearly fell backwards. I knew this would happen, but I hadn't expected it so soon.
"You only said it to get me to stay last night. You didn't mean it. And exactly what you just said is why I need to leave. At least for awhile." She was crying harder now. She swiped at the tears, but the didn't stop. "When you can tell me you love me without being provoked or out of desperation and spite you'll understand why this had to be done. I'll wait. I've waited this long, it won't kill e to give you more time."
"I don't need more time. I meant it last night. It just came out at the wrong time." it was amazing how close she could push me to the edge of desperation. It nearly killed me to ask the next question. "Are we done? Is this it?"
She walked up to me and put her hand to my face before she spoke. "No, we'll never be done, Tucker. You'll figure this out and I want to be the first to know hen you do." She smiled sadly and hugged me before pressing her lips firmly to mine. I was still too shocked to respond. She was actually leaving. Then, she turned, grabbed her bag and started to leave, stopping and waving at the bedroom doorway.
"Where are you staying?"
"At Maria's. Take time for yourself before you try to call me though, okay? I'll be alright." I nodded slightly, just enough for her to see. "I love you. I'll miss you."
Seeing as she probably didn't want me to say it back at that particular moment I settled for, "I'll miss you too." I went to the kitchen when I heard the door shut and promptly poured myself a strong drink. As I drank glass after glass, I examined her flower painted house key.
It was the beginning of sophomore year when Jane's parents got divorced. It was one of those shocking divorces that you never saw coming. One of the situations where you think, "if they can't make it, who can?"
It hit Jane hard. If it was a shock to all of us, it was completely unfathomable to Jane. It was hard to tell which was the better conditions at the time. Mine, where the parents were always arguing and their marital problems were out for everyone to see, or Jane's, where you never see anything wrong until the day you nearly suffer a hear attack hearing that their seemingly happy and wonderful marriage was anything but.
Chris and I had known Jane since grade school. She was a little tomboy and insisted she could do everything, say anything, and be just like us. She weaseled herself in until she was a permanent fixture beside us.
I got the call around eight. It was very quick and concise. I hardly got a hello in before she told me to meet her. Then, she hung up. No goodbye, no room for discussion. She knew I'd show up. So, without wasting time, I grabbed a sweatshirt and left.
I arrived at the school about ten minutes later and went straight to the football field. I spotted her as soon as I made it through the gap in the fence. She was laying in the middle of the field staring up at the starless sky.
When I sat down, she didn't even look at me, just launched into the story. She told me they told her after dinner. They said that they'd been 'having problems' for awhile and hadn't been happy for years. She left before they got to the small details of how this would affect her. She'd been wandering around aimlessly for an hour before she called me. Of course, she tried Chris first, but he was a work. Chris was better with this kind of stuff than I was.
She finally looked at me then. I could see the tears in her eyes that she refused to let fall. when she shivered, I held out the sweatshirt to her. I knew that she'd need it. Even if she would never admit to being cold, she wouldn't turn it down either.
She came and sat beside me after putting it on and I pulled her down with me as I laid down. Her head rested on my chest right below my chin and I wrapped my arms around her. "You know, it's not a weakness to get cold." It was the first I had spoken since I got there, but I felt bad that she thought she had to hide her feelings from us, mainly me. I felt bad that she didn't think she could cry in front of me because it would make her weak, when in reality, she was one of the strongest people I knew. I didn't want to say this though. It would've just come out wrong and insulted her. But, she understood.
We stayed there long after my shirt dried of her tears. When I felt her shiver again, in spite of the sweatshirt, I knew it was time to leave. I nudged her and she sat up. I stood up and gripped her wrists when she held them out and pulled her to her feet.
She hugged me tightly. I didn't expect it, so it took me a moment to gently wrap my arms around her. Her face was buried in my neck. "Thanks." I nodded. I was about to let go when she paralyzed me by saying something I never thought I'd hear coming from her lips to my ears. "I love you." She pulled away first to look me in the eye. "Promise me you'll always be there for me." I nodded, but she shook her head. "Say it. Promise me."
"I promise." Satisfied, she turned on her heel and left me standing there. I was forced to jog to catch up with her when my mind caught up with everything that had just happened.
After we were back at my house and Jane was asleep in my bed in some of my clothes, I was still pondering the strange turn of events. It was odd hearing her say she loved me. I'd never been told that in my life that I remembered. All my grandparents had died now, all aunts and uncles were estranged, and my parents never told me they loved me or my sister. Sure, they said they did, but not once did they ever actually say 'I love you.' It's different when you actually hear it said it means something different than just knowing or assuming.
A little later when Jane's phone rang, I answered it. I probably shouldn't have, but the screen flashed 'HOME.' "Hello?"
"Tucker?" It was her mom.
"Oh, thank goodness. Is Jane with you?"
"Yeah, she's sleeping. Did you want me to wake her up?"
"No, that's alright, dear. We just didn't know where she was. She's alright?"
"Okay. I'll let you get some rest then. Goodnight."
"Thanks, Tucker. For being there for her, helping her through this. I know this is hard for her." I didn't know what to say so I didn't say anything. That seemed to have become a habit with me. "Well, goodnight then, Tucker."
"Goodnight." Numbly I hung up the phone and put it back on my night stand before crawling over Jane and laying down. I never did tell Jane her mom called looking for her. There really wasn't a need to.
Looking back I'm glad that she called me, that Chris had to work. It made all the difference knowing that somebody needed me and that I was capable of comforting her. I'd loved her since then, but seeing all the marriages fall apart around me, I couldn't tell her. It started out as just a love of friends but later developed into the heartbreaking true love it was today. It hurt me to think about not being with her so I kept my mouth shut and never told her how I felt. But I ended up hurting her worse by not telling her and ultimately broke my promise to her. I didn't leave her, but I kept pushing her away until she felt she had no choice but to leave me.
"It's wonderful, Tucker! Absolutely perfect! You've got to let me decorate what ever apartment you get." She looked at me hopefully. It took all I had not to laugh and ruin the surprise right then. We were standing in what would later be the kitchen of our apartment. She didn't know it, but there was a specific key burning a hole in my pocket.
"You can start decorating whenever you want."
"Wait. You mean this is your place? You already have it?"
I nodded. "I paid the deposit and got the keys yesterday."
She practically skipped over to me. Bouncing, she hugged me. "It's so hard to believe that we're actually adults now. You're moving out, Chris's moving out. We're all going to college, growing up." She turned and wiped under her eyes. "God, look at me. I'm bawling because we're moving on. Well, at least we're moving on to the same place. I don't have to worry about you two forgetting about me and replacing me with some wannabe bimbo."
"Never." I returned her smile.
"But, Tucker, don't you think it's a little big? I mean, it's got two bedrooms, and this kitchen… and the living room. Plus, the awesome balcony and the huge tub in the bathroom."
"You make it sound like a palace. Really, Jane it's not that great."
"No, it's amazing! It's your own place! Your very first apartment! But, Tucker, you can't even cook, can you?"
"No, you'll just have to cook for me." She gave me a slightly bewildered look, so I forged on. "You're right, this place is too big for just me, but not for two people. I asked your parents already and they're fine with you living here with me if it's what you want. Your dad helped me look up the neighborhood and while it's not spotless, it's pretty safe." I was rambling. I snapped me mouth shut and made eye contact.
Her mouth was parted and her eyes were round as saucers. She didn't make a move to wipe the tears away this time. Then, she was in my arms, hugging me again. "Yes. Yes, Tucker, I'll live here with you!" I picked her up and she immediately wrapped her legs around my waist placing kisses all over my face.
"And I got this made specifically for you. I almost forgot about it." I sat her down on the counter and dug in my pocket for the flower painted key. It was painted with all different colors and types of flowers. "It was the one you always said you liked when you saw it, but said you could never get because you didn't know which house you would get it for - your mom's or your dad's - because you felt like you were picking favorites? Well, now you can have it for your - our - apartment."
"Oh, Tucker." She took the key and held it in her hand. Then she pulled me to her and kissed me before whispering against my lips, "I love you."
Chris showed up banging my door down two days after she left. I didn't bother to get up. He had a key and was just doing this to annoy me, probably assuming I was hung over. But I wasn't. I had been drinking just enough to keep the feelings at bay and not get a pounding headache.
"Hey, asshole, don't you think you should answer your door?" It slammed shut.
"No, you would have eventually gone away. Why did I ever let Jane talk me into giving you a key?" I muttered as he walked in and surveyed the room; me on the couch unshaven and still in the same sweats I had put on that night and the empty liquor bottles on the coffee table.
"Well, bravo." He clapped twice. "I see you've learned from your past mistakes. Or are you just anticipating a longer absence? May I just say that you have royally fucked up this time! You finally, tell her you love her and then you turn it around to be about you? Honestly, Tucker can you seriously not see how that would upset her?" he was moving around the room, picking up bottles and cleaning. That was Chris though and this was routine by now. I fucked up, royally in this case as he put it, and he comes and picks up the pieces. Then, as he once told me, he hands me back to Jane so she can put the last piece in place because she's the one that always has it. Sometimes I could do without his cheesy analogies. Jane, on the other hand, love his homosexual touch, as she put it.
"I don't see what I did that was so universally wrong. Care to enlighten me?" He stopped what he was doing and looked at me, biting his painted thumb nail. He was obviously debating something.
"She said I could specifically, outright tell you, but she didn't say I couldn't nudge you in the right direction. Of course, it's going to be a lot of work. You were way too dense to realize you were slowly breaking her heart all these years even though I did everything but use a megaphone to scream in your ear, 'hey shithead, you're killing her.'" I didn't bother commenting. It was clear he was having this discussion with himself. He wouldn't hear me until he made his decision and came back to reality. Sighing he plopped down on the couch and promptly started fidgeting with the scarf around his neck. "Fine."
Two hours later Chris was beyond frustrated and I wasn't fare behind. "Okay, dipshit, listen carefully one last time. I'm doing all I can here. Would it hurt you to at least try?"
"I am trying, asshole! It's not my fault you're talking in code! Just tell me what the fuck I did wrong already so we can move on! Jane'll forgive you; she always does! You get away with everything. I, on the other hand, get bitched at for every mistake I make." I stood up and started pacing. All but throwing my hands up in defeat.
"I'm not just going to tell you! I agree with her that you're never going to get it if you don't figure this out on your own. And this isn't just another one of your screw ups. Now, sit your ass down and try this again!" I did sit down, muttering a few select profanities.
"Okay, so I told her I loved her then she decides to leave anyway. I don't see I'm at fault for giving her what she wanted."
"STOP!" I snapped my mouth shut and looked at him like he'd lost his mind. Maybe the nail polish was finally getting to him. He'd practically chewed it all off since he's been here. Plus, there was the scarf around his neck, maybe that was somehow cutting off blood flow or oxygen to his brain. Why else would he suddenly start screaming. "Think about what you just said."
"God, Tucker, if somebody told you something you've been waiting years to hear just to shut you up, how would you feel?"
"I wouldn't like it, I guess, but -"
"But, I meant it when I said it."
"Yes, but you only said it to make her stay. Right now that's all she can see even if you did mean it."
"So, basically it was all about timing and how I picked the absolute worst time to say it?"
"Yes!" He sat up straighter in his seat.
"So, she knows I care about her, but she only thinks I told her I loved her so she would stay? To please her?"
"Ahh, we are making progress!" He was inching forward toward the edge of the couch.
"But isn't that what it's about, wanting to please her?"
Instantly he slumped back down into the cushions and rubbed his hands over his face. "Not when it come to telling her you love her. She wants you to tell her how you feel. But, when it comes to love itself you want to please her. Hence the reason you bring her flowers, pick her up for lunch, but her the necklace she said she liked," he mumbled, just clear enough for me to understand. "Are you getting any of this? Is any of it sinking in? and so help me, if you say no, I'm deeming you a lost cause and walking out that door to tell Jane she's wasting her time." He practically glared at me.
"I think so." Chris looked reluctant. "She was the first person to ever tell me she loved me. I knew my parents did in their own way. When she told me, it felt so different to actually hear it. I was glad you were working that night. I think I've loved her since then, but the feeling scared me. I'd never felt anything so strong for another person the way I felt it for her. So, I pushed it aside and told myself it wasn't love because that would corrupt what we had."
A grin broke across his face. "Oh my God! I just made Tucker admit to having feelings. And little Janey didn't thing I had the patience to do it." I just stared at him. "Okay, so it was a little touch and go there for awhile, but I eventually got you to your destination."
"Not yet. What do I do now? How do I make it up to her and make her believe me?"
"It's going to be a lot of work. You remember senior prom?" I nodded. How could I forget? That had taken me weeks to plan and all those flowers had wiped out my saving account. "Well, I'm thinking along these same lines, only… bigger."
There were three phases to my plan. It all worked on a timeline leading up to my apology. Before anything could be initiated though arrangements had to be made. Preparations had to be done by eight for the first stage. In order for this to work the plans had to be ready for the second and third stages also. It was all very cohesive and I didn't have very much time. One slip up and the whole thing would be shot to hell.
So, at the crack of dawn the next morning I was moving. The places I needed to go weren't open yet leaving me with no choice but to start by going to my mother's house. All the better to get that out of the way first but that didn't mean I was thrilled about it.
As I had predicted, she asked a lot of questions. Luckily I had left in time to fill her in on the situation. She gushed about how adorable I was and mumbled about somebody never doing anything sweet like that for her. Three guesses as to who that somebody was. Anyway, I tried to hurry her along. I was working on short notice and the deadline was looming.
I waited in the hallway as she disappeared into her dark bedroom to search for what I needed. I heard my father grumble from bed about her being too loud. She yelled for him to 'shut up and go back to sleep' and handed me a box. She kissed m cheek and wished me luck before I left.
The next stop was the flower shop. Fortunately I got there early enough that they could get the flowers together and delivered by eight. The lady didn't seem all that surprised when I told her my plan. She just nodded like she dealt with people - men - like me everyday. When I left she smiled and said she hoped everything worked out.
Back in the car, I pulled out the number I had looked up the last night and called to make a reservation for Jane. Explaining the situation and what I wanted to do they agreed and as the universe hadn't turned on me yet, they had an opening before lunch. Finally, the last stop before the metaphorical ball started rolling was Jane's favorite little boutique. After a lot of browsing and with the help of a sales clerk I found a dress for her. It was simple enough that Jane could wear it anytime, but also had a sexy quality to it. She would love it. Plus, it would show off her amazing legs. It was perfect. Now, I just had to wait all day until it was my turn.
I hadn't spoken to Tucker in three days. I was starting to doubt this whole thing. Tucker could be dense sometimes. What if he never figured this out? Was I willing to let our relationship fall apart because of something he said? I should have just let Chris talk to him. Surely if I had this would be solved by now. Chris was magic like that. My own personal fairy godmother.
I giggled. I'm not sure how Chris would respond to that. I'd have to remember to ask him the next time I saw him.
I walked into my office building. I smiled and said hello to the girl at the front desk like I did every morning, but today she acted weird. She kept giving me these looks. Almost like she was hiding something. I just shrugged it off and continued upstairs to my office.
Before I even entered the room I was hit with the smell of flowers. Turning on the light, I was greeted by dozens upon dozens of white roses all around the room. There was a dozen in each vase and the rest was filled in with greens and baby's breath. In the center of my desk there was a larger vase filled with fully bloomed red and white roses. it was arranged so the roses formed rings. The largest at the bottom was red roses, then white, and so for the and in the center at the top was a singe whit rose.
Seeing an envelope propped against that vase addressed to me - obviously it couldn't be a mistake then - I snapped my mouth shut and walked over. With slightly trembling hands, I opened the envelope and was met by Tucker's messy scrawl.
I realize now why you are so upset with me. I know it won't make up for everything, but I've arranged for you to take the day off and made an appointment for you at the spa that you like but never get the time to go to. Everything's taken care of. They're expecting you.
P.S. I hoped you liked the flowers. White roses are your favorite. Red roses stand for a declaration of love.
I smiled. Red roses stand for a declaration of love. "Oh, Tucker, what do you have planned?" Still smiling I gathered up my bag and purse and left. Waving goodbye to the girl at the front desk on my way out.
Tucker went all out for me at the spa. It was all very relaxing. I was ready to get dressed and go see him. He had other plans though.
When I opened my locker there was a gorgeous white knit dress hanging inside. Judging the length it would hit just above mid-thigh on me. It had three-quarter length sleeves, scoop neck line, detailing at the bottom, and tied around the waist in the front. It was simple. Elegant yet sexy. It would be nicely downplayed with the navy blue flip flops I had worn here.
I spotted a red rose on the top shelf. When I reached for it another envelope fluttered to the ground. Again it was addressed to me.
Hope you like the dress. I thought it was perfect for you. Beautiful just like you. Wear it tonight and meet me please. You know where.
Tucker had gone romantic. He'd had his moments before, but he'd never pulled so many stops in one go. Of course I would meet him. And this dress was too pretty to be hanging. I had a good guess where he'd be. At least, I hoped I did. There was only one place I could think that he meant. The place we had always gone to before. The only place that held specific meaning to the both of us. Of course he'd have to tell me he loved me in the same place I'd first told him.
The red rose petals gave it away. I was in the right place. I followed them down the bleacher steps. Being careful in my flip flops. When I reached the landing below I looked up. My breath caught. Tucker was standing on the football field in jeans and a white button down smiling slightly and holding another red rose and envelope.
I closed the distance between us and he silently handed me the envelope. I looked at him then opened it up.
I'm so sorry that I gave you the idea that I didn't care. I love you more than anything and it scares me. But back when you were fourteen you told me you loved me and since then I've felt the same way. It's different knowing somebody loves you and actually hearing it. I'm sorry I hurt you. Forgive me?
I love you,
I held back my tears when I looked up and took the rose he handed me. I threw my arms around him and hugged him tight. "Yes, I forgive you, Tucker," I whispered next to his ear.
He pulled back to look at me, but didn't let go. "Good. I've got one last thing for you." He pulled out a jewelry box and opened it revealing a beautiful diamond ring. "My grandfather gave it to my grandmother. It was her engagement ring. He proposed to her when they lived in Italy and had it engraved there." he took it out and handed it to me. I could see the engraving. I have to squint to read it though. "They loved each other so much. I've realized that instead of looking at my parent's marriage or your parent's failed marriage, I need to see my grandparent's love and your parent's new marriages. Love isn't always a disaster. Ours isn't unless I make it that way." He chuckled nervously. "This isn't me proposing necessarily, but I do intend to marry you someday if it's what you want. And when you decide I'll do it the right way. Getting your parents blessing and getting down on one knee and everything. The whole nine yards. I want it to be a surprise, but for now I want you to have the ring."
I couldn't' fight the tears anymore, they fell freely. "Ti amo?"
"It's 'I love you' in Italian."
"Oh, Tucker, I love you so much."
And for the first time ever, Tucker replied back to me. "I love you too."
I slid the ring on my finger and threw myself at him, crushing my lips fiercely to his. He just barely kept up upright and kissed me back. A few minutes later, I smiled and pulled away. "You know, I would have forgiven you anyway eventually. Faster if you would have just come and talked to me, but now I don't know how you'll top all this."
"I don't plan on messing up this bad in the future."
"Oh, but you will mess up and now I know what you're capable of." I laughed when he groaned and kissed my forehead. "What now?"
"Whatever you want. We can go get dinner if you'd like. You look great in the dress by the way."
"How about-" I was cut off as the song 'I'll Be' began playing over the loud speakers. I looked up towards the stands. Chris was in the audio room above the bleachers waving at us.
"It seems Chris didn't think I could pull this off and offered his assistance. Do you want to dance so his lawbreaking doesn't go to waste?" I nodded and he wrapped his arms around me, pulling me flush against his chest. "You were saying?"
"Oh, yeah. I think we should go home and you can take this dress off."
"That's it? Okay?"
"Well, yeah. What did you think I was going to do? Tell you all my dirty thoughts? You'll have to wait and find those out later, Princess." He whispered the last part. His breath on my ear making me shudder with pleasure. He pulled away abruptly and dug in his front pocket. "This is yours." He held his hand out and I took my flower key out of his palm.
"Thank you." I kissed him softly on the lips once more. The song was over and we started walking off the field. "For the record, I think you pulled this off nicely without Chris, but don't tell him that." I smiled widely up at Tucker. "He's my fairy godmother and you're my Prince Charming."
Tucker laughed and pulled me closer to his side. "Does that make you Cinderella?" I nodded and he shrugged. "As long as you're my princess. I love you." I smiled up at him as we walked hand-in-hand to the parking lot.
AN: Okay, so I planned on this being out like two weeks ago, but for some reason it wouldn't convert for fiction press so I could upload it. How fitting that it's out for Valentine's Day though? So, this is my Valentine's present to all my readers reading this. I have the next chapter of It Changes Everything ready too, but same problem, so that should be up soon too.
This was the first time I've ever attempted a guys pov too, so let me know how I did. Also, I know the title is a bit sucky, but I couldn't think of anything else. I'm open to suggestions. Reviews, please.