A Tragic Wreck
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“Let me worry about that.” Donovan hung up and ran his fingers through where his hair once was.
“Hey, Mo!” Alexander said upon arriving at Johnny D’s and seeing Mo sitting at a table alone. He couldn’t pull himself away from the bar. Not yet, anyway. Even though Olivia was gone, Mo and Kiera still showed up every Thursday night for Open Mic. Alexander had moved on like Olivia wanted him to, but it was still comforting to see people that had a connection to her.
“Hey, man. Good to see you. How’s Chelsea?” Mo asked, taking a sip from his beer.
“She’s great. Thanks for asking,” he replied, his eyes dropping.
“Hey,” Mo said, placing his hand on Alexander’s arm. “It’s okay to move on. It’s what she wanted you to do.”
“I know, but she’s still on my mind.” He looked down, trying to cope with his mixed feelings.
“And she will be, at least for a while,” Mo said, remembering how he felt the first time Olivia ran. “But you just wake up in the morning and get through the day and, eventually, it will get easier. Then you’ll move on. She’ll always be there in the back of your mind but, soon, it won’t hurt as much.”
Alexander simply nodded. “I guess I’m officially a member of the Olivia Adler Survival Club, aren’t I?” he laughed, clearing the air a bit.
“Yeah, and it’s quite a club, isn’t it?” Kiera said, sitting down at the table.
“Hey, Kiera. Any word?” Alexander asked the short redhead hopefully, wondering if Olivia had contacted her friends for the holidays. He never told them that he had found her, the pain of her rejection still too raw.
“No. Nothing. It’s been a few months and nothing.” Kiera looked into Alexander’s eyes and could see the hurt there. She knew exactly how he felt. She had been there all those years ago, too. She couldn’t understand why someone would just leave, not saying anything to anyone. Over the years, she had begun to accept it. The more she learned about Olivia, the more she understood why she ran. It didn’t make it right, but she knew why she did it, at least.
“I know it’s stupid, but I even made her a tofu turkey for tomorrow. I guess I’m just still hoping she’ll show up. No one should be alone on Christmas Eve.” Kiera looked away, trying to hide her tears.
Mo wrapped his arms around her petite frame, comforting her.
“We’re quite the fun bunch, aren’t we?” Alexander said, lightening the mood.
“You doing anything tonight?” Mo asked, trying to change the subject.
When Alexander arrived home after finding Olivia in Florida, he knew he needed to try to get over her. He was still angry. He wasn’t coping very well without her in his life. That’s when he turned to music, just as Olivia had done all those years ago. He found that it helped to have an outlet for his emotions, instead of keeping them all bottled up.
“Yeah, and I think it’ll be the last time. It’s time to let go.”
Mo simply nodded his head. “You do what you gotta do.”
They all turned their heads when the M.C. jumped back on the stage. “Okay, next up, Alex! Get on up here!”
Alexander took a deep breath and made his way to the stage for the last time. He sat down at the piano and adjusted the microphone. “Thanks everyone, and thanks for letting me play a little bit these past few weeks. For those of you who don’t know, I went through a pretty nasty break-up a few months ago. It felt as if my entire world was ripped out from underneath me when this girl left. I tried to figure out where it all went wrong, but now I know I need to let her go and move on because finally, there is someone in my life who I think could make me happy. But before I can move on, I just need to do one last song. For me. And for the girl I lost. This is Eve, the Apple of My Eye by BellX1.”
Alexander placed his hands on the piano and began to play the slow melody. As he sang the words, all he thought about was his Olivia, how he was certain she still cared about him. But when he confronted her in Florida, she turned him away, desperate to protect herself. He didn’t care about that. He still loved her with every fiber of his being, and he knew he would probably always love her. But, at the same time, he needed to move on. He hadn’t been living those past few months. He’d simply been existing.
He still didn’t understand why Olivia ran. Maybe things moved too quickly. She was a girl who was dealt such a shit life. She had never really coped with anything. Over the past several months, he had become angrier with his father over everything that had happened in Olivia’s life. He wanted to think that it was all his father’s fault. He covered up her very existence, ripping her from the only friends and family that she had. Now, twenty-one years later, she couldn’t form any meaningful relationships because of her fear that she’d lose those very people. It was tragic, in a way, how empty she was.
“Do you think he’ll ever be over her?” Mo asked, leaning in close to Kiera, listening to Alexander’s passionate plea.
She simply shook her head, not wanting to think about the fact that her best friend was gone and she didn’t know where she was. Alexander wasn’t the only one hurting.
“I just want her to come back home,” Kiera cried, Mo placing his arm around her. “This is where she belongs. Not out in the world somewhere, trying to run away from the people who care about her. I just don’t understand why she does it.”
“Yes, you do,” Mo responded, glancing back to the stage.
Alexander sang the chorus, thinking about how empty he felt since Olivia had walked out of his life. A part of him died that day. Then he found her and felt something he hadn’t felt since she left…hope. But the look of pain on her face after he tried to convince her to come back with him was so much worse than he imagined. And he did that to her. Now that he was singing the words to the emotional song, he realized that maybe he and Olivia were never heading in the same direction. He had waited most of his life to find the girl that stole his heart all those years ago, but maybe there was a bigger reason that she was taken from him.
He knew it was time to accept what had happened between them. It was time to move on. Why put in any more thought and effort into a bad situation? It will only make it worse. As he neared the end of the song, he thought about all the dreams he had where Olivia appeared on his doorstep, begging him to take her back. But, with Olivia, she could make any relationship sink or swim at the turn of a dime, and he didn’t know if he could put himself through that again.