Within five seconds I knew the answer to my own questions. I knew I didn't have the strength to fight for the unknown but at the same time, I knew I couldn't leave Hugh. Something inside me told me that if I did, I would crumble and wouldn't ever be able to get back up.
As I sit here listening to "Hootie and The Blowfish - Let Her Cry" I know that it is one of those moments in my life that no matter what decision I made, at the end of the day was going to be one that I was going to have to live with. I made a promise to myself a long time ago that I wouldn't settle for any less than I deserved but here was a man who I loved so much offering me his heart, even after all the pain and sleepless nights, I knew I was going to have to break that promise and it pained me more than I cared to admit.
With Hugh I knew I was safe. I knew that nothing could hurt me but he, and that was more comforting than the unknown…at least I knew what I was getting myself into.
I took a deep breath in and struggled to fight back the tears that I could feel were desperate to be released before opening my mouth to speak.
"Hugh, I know that you really want an answer to those questions but I really cannot give you one that would be honest. I really don't know what I want from us, I don't know where this is going to go and I am too scared to sit here and try and analyse it. There has been so much that has happened between us and the future is something that I fear more than life itself. I feel like I am drowning at the moment because I really don't know which road to take. I am afraid if I tell you everything, I may be making a mistake because I really haven't got all of this right in my head. What I can guarantee you is that I never want this to end, I need to recover from everything that we have been through but I couldn't handle not having you in my life. I'm sorry Hugh but that is all I can say right now because I don't want to make the wrong decision and regret it in the future….all I want is you!"
As the tears cascaded down my cheeks, I knew that I was being as honest I possibly could but I also knew that my life wasn't ever going to be the same. I had closed off a part of my heart to this man and even though he had every inch of it, there was something inside that broke me.
I stood in the same spot as I searched for his face for answers but none came. He took a step closer to me and I had to fight every urge in me to run from him. I was feeling so vulnerable, so lonely and memories of every bad thing that had happened between us flooded into focus.
In the final moments before his hands found their way towards my face I remembered all the times that I had been saved by this man. I remembered the first time I let him into my heart, the first time I felt the spark between us, and the first time I let this man show his worth to me.
I had never been in the situation where someone had allowed me to break down the walls I had built up so high for so many years. I had never had someone just talk to me instead of wanting me around them because they were interested in the physical attributes and it was such a turn-off when this was revealed to be their true reasoning behind wanting to know me.
As I stood there I realised that I still wasn't ready to talk away from Hugh. I knew that in order for me to walk away, something pretty drastic was going to have to happen. I loved him more than I could say and that made it really hard for me to walk away….
The silence that filled our gap was so uncomfortable so I took a step forward and made a move that I knew would put the conversation on ice until I was able to digest everything that he said.
His hand flew up towards my face and he pulled me in for a passionate kiss that literally took my breath away. I felt the wave of relief wash over me as I realised that I wasn't going to have to respond to him.
I felt his free hand travel up my thigh and the familiar burning desire returned in the pit of my stomach as the volts of electricity passed through me from his touch.
I kissed his neck and felt his breath on mine as he lifted me up and carried me towards the bed. I threw my arms around his neck and nuzzled into the crevice between his neck and shoulder. I felt safe, I felt at home and I felt like I was able to keep the inevitable fight at bay….for a little while at least. He placed me gently down on the covers and began exploring my body with such care that the burning desire quickly turned into a roaring fire as he strategically and expertly found every sensitive spot on my body. He knew it so well and yet he was still the only person who knew how to make me let go and just be free.
As the moments passed, I drank them all in. How could I deny myself the love I so clearly felt when I was with him?. How could I be so scared when he so clearly felt it also…what was I really looking for? Did I really believe that I was going to find that elsewhere?…but, more importantly, was I willing to risk all of this for a greener grass I wasn't even sure existed?
Later that evening as we were laying in bed I sat there thinking about whether to tell Hugh about Nicky and what had happened…So trying to move forward on a really positive and honest note and maybe because I felt I owed him something I did. However, because they were so close I decided to put a funny spin on it.
Laying in bed, curled up in his arm, I moved my arm and sat up on my elbows, looking at him.
"You know something pretty funny happened tonight. I could have ended up somewhere else tonight," I said laughingly.
"Oh really, what happened?" he said, raising an eyebrow and a cheeky grin on his face.
Here was the playful Hugh I knew and loved. I was sure he was going to laugh…
"Well, Nicky asked me to come up to his room," Laughing and returning his cheeky grin.
He sat up straight and a dark look came over his face. This was so not what I was expecting.
"Don't!. Ava, that's not funny and I cannot even believe that he would do something that fucking stupid!. Tell me exactly what happened immediately" In that instant, I knew I shouldn't have said anything. I could feel the rage, jealousy enters his voice and the room turned cold. I sat up and pulled the sheets around me tighter. I was not expecting this.
"Well!" he demanded.
I told him the story and he grabbed my shoulders firmly before kissing me like he had something to prove.
When he released me, I let it all go and walked into the bathroom before locking the door and standing against the bench, struggling to gain my breath and desperate to gather my thoughts.
I didn't sleep much that night. I was so confused and had to keep getting up and going to the bathroom to gather my thoughts.
When I finally drifted off to sleep I saw the sun creeping in through the closed curtains and a tear fell down my cheek before it all went to darkness.