Grace lay in bed feeling completely and wholly relaxed somewhere between sleep and consciousness, so she jumped slightly when she felt Elliott’s hand on hers. He took her hand in his and kissed it gently.
Silence reigned for a mere moment before the shrill sound that she heard far too often rung through the air, causing Elliott to leap towards the bedside table scrabbling for the phone, and waking Grace fully. That sound, she knew, only could mean one thing. Grace had been seeing Elliott regularly for a little over three months now, and she could count on one hand the number of occasions that they’d spent together when his phone had not rung. For most people, this might not be too much of an issue, however when the reason for the call was that the woman Elliott really
loved had yet again had an argument with her husband, this caused a problem for Grace.
She pulled herself out of bed with a sigh and headed into the bathroom to take a shower. As the weak stream of slightly too hot water trickled over her body she thought about how the situation couldn’t continue as it was. She wished that there could be a second option in this, but she knew deep in her heart that there was only the one.
Ten minutes later she stepped out of the shower, and stood dripping on the bathroom floor for a moment whilst she listened out for voices. When all she heard was silence she grabbed a towel, wrapped it round her and went back into the bedroom, preparing herself for what she was soon to say. When she entered the room she saw that Elliott was stood half-dressed in the middle of the floor. This came as no surprise to Grace. This was often what happened after he received a call from her
. Silently whilst deep in contemplation Grace began dressing waiting for Elliott to make his excuses before hurrying her out of his house. He seemed to have gauged that her silence was a reaction to the phone call.
“I’m sorry Grace, you know I am. It’s just... you know what her husband’s like.” He said, pulling a t-shirt on.
“Yeah, I know.” She quietly replied, sitting down on the edge of the bed and dressing.
“She doesn’t have anyone else to turn to. Most of her friends don’t bother with her anymore, I can’t do the same.” He sounded almost as though he was pleading.
“I know you won’t.” She said, and paused before continuing. “But I don’t want you to get hurt.”
Elliott turned towards her with a frown on his face.
“What do you mean?” He asked.
“Oh come off it Elliott.” Grace said, standing up to look him in the face. “I’m not stupid, and I’m not blind. I’ve known from day one how you feel about her; I thought it was something you would get over once you had someone in your life, but... you haven’t. You’re still in love with her and I can’t stay with someone who loves another woman more than he loves me.” She grabbed her bag from the floor and slinging it over her shoulder she turned to Elliott. “I’m sorry, but I can’t stay with you knowing that you’d drop me in a second if you ever got a chance with her.”
“Grace... I – “ He started to say, but she was already halfway out the door, and didn’t stay to listen to the rest of the sentence.