“I’m not going with you.”
Jack groaned, grabbing Greta by both elbows. “But you read the same page I did.”
“Yes, I did,” Greta said, shrugging him off. It had nothing to do with whether or not she believed it. She believed it. Greta saw her boss go from an intrepid, party planning twat to a savage beast in less than seventy two hours. “Why can’t you just go without me?”
“That isn’t funny.”
“You’re not funny! That night was intense and visceral and terrifying and you acted like it was nothing. I still feel it inside of me, I still feel you inside of me. I emptied my soul to you and again you acted like it was nothing. Now you’re here saying we should run away together—”
“Yeah, whatever. I’m not going to spend the rest of my life, how short it may be, with a liar.”
“Why do you need me to say it? Are you really so insecure?”
“Come off it…”
“No, really. You know how I feel. I show you how I feel with my actions and my words—"
“Ha!” Greta laughed. “With his actions and words, he says.” Greta laughed again, the same bitter filled laughed.
“If I said I love you would all of your insecurities vanish?”
“I’m beginning to understand who you are, Jack.”
It was Jack’s turn to laugh a cold and disappointed laugh. “Before you speak the monologue you indubitably prepared, let me remind you of the man who helped you care for Gumbo when he was so sick he couldn’t use the litter box. Of the man who buys groceries when you’re too anxious to leave the house. And of the man who’s fixed everything in this damn house but doesn’t bat an eye when you call yourself a ‘handy woman.’”
“Is this the same man that uses my love against me?”
“No, is he the same man stringing me along, calling upon my love only when it suits him? So just when I think I can move on, he does something so sweet and caring, I think maybe he does love me. Just when I think maybe it’s in my head, he pulls me by the viscera, only to toss me aside and act like it never happened.”
Jack went silent.
“Greta…” Jack closed the space between them, tracing his fingers delicately against her cheek.
“No!” Greta smacked at his chest. “No! See! You’re doing it again. You’re absolutely pathological.” Greta pushed Jack away that he stumbled. “Is this some kind of prank you’ve been playing or are you a sociopath? Let’s see how far my puppet strings work on Greta! Well they won’t go very far.”
Jack moved closer again. “No,” Greta said, extending her arm. “I understand now. I’m sorry it took me three years, but it’s better than four.” It was a little embarrassing, being played the love fool. Knowing the person saw her as a fool, a play thing. But once the cringe faded to a wrinkle Greta would realize it was always better to leap and get smacked with embarrassment than to never take the leap at all.
“You misunderstand.” Jack clasped her wrist. Greta hated herself for still wanting him to touch her. She tried to stay strong, tried to ignore what he said. She fought against his touch, still keeping her arm at length. Jack pulled her arm to him and whispered gruffly in to her ear, “Greta… you work strings on me.” There it was again, the pull. It was irresistible, innate. Greta groped for his face and pulled him to her. Jack thrust himself upon Greta. It was magnetic. Jack pushed Greta to the wall, arms above herself. They were pinned against the wall, stuck in the moment before their kiss, eyes locked, breaths beating and impassioned.
Greta shattered the moment with her kiss. It was like she could feel thousands of glass shards hitting her from the moment they kissed, from the moment they broke the wall. It was electric, it was erotic. Her skin was on fire in every spot he touched her and her skin was burning for him to touch her more. His tongue worked magic inside her mouth, she could barely contain her sighs. The world had become cloaked in splendid colors, with each flick of his tongue, stroke of his hand, fireworks blasted.
Greta grasped for Jack, trying to pull him closer. “Jack…” she heard herself whisper. Like a voice through a haunted fog, it was foreign and full of wanting. Jack pulled her from the wall and pinned her to the floor. He wore a devilish smile as he watched Greta sigh and writhe for him. Greta couldn’t recall the last time she’d seen him smile like that, if ever. It was wicked and dark and she found herself wanting to do anything to make it stay. She tried to move herself toward him but he kept her pinned. Greta ground her teeth.
“Do it, Greta…” Jack whispered, keeping her arms pinned. He lowered one hand beneath her jeans. Her eyes widened. Jack placed his hand between her thighs and Greta ground her teeth even harder. Jack’s eyes darkened and his smile widened. “Scream.”
Outside their door someone screamed.