Wished away a broken fai.., p.7
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       Wished Away: A Broken Fairy Tale, p.7

           S.P. Cervantes
 
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  “Are you alright Mrs. Bosi?” Dr. Scott is holding out his handkerchief, trying to catch the wine that’s splashing over the rim of my glass.

  “I’m so sorry Dr. Scott, I wasn’t looking where I was going.” I force myself to glance away and take the handkerchief he holds out to me, hoping I’m not blushing.

  I haven’t seen Dr. Scott much since the day Dave died, and instead of feeling sadness, the only thing I can think at this moment is how handsome he looks. His dark wavy hair is slicked back, revealing eyes that are so blue, it’s like looking into the sky. They’re filled with such a sense of hope, that I can’t help but wonder what for? His body is perfectly wrapped in a tailored black tuxedo making it difficult to look back up at him when I hand back the handkerchief. I’m not sure why I’m having this reaction to him when no one else has even made my heart do anything but sink, and it flusters me. “It’s nice to see you again, Dr. Scott.” I say trying to ease away from him and go back to the safety of my friends.

  “Please call me Gage,” his voice is soft, with a deep and gravely rasp that massages my soul. Right now all I can think is the alcohol must be getting to me. When he takes the white cloth from my hands, his fingers brush against mine making us both flinch back in reaction to the intimate touch.

  “Then call me Jess,” I say trying to make this interaction less awkward. The tension between us is thick and I don’t know if it’s because of the sadness he knows I feel or if he notices how much his proximity seems to be affecting me.

  “Well then, Jess,” he says bowing his head to me looking up at me with a wrinkled forehead through his long, dark lashes. “I’m glad I could be here tonight to support such a great cause. I’m sure Dave would have been proud of all you’ve done.”

  Gage knows all too well the depth his words would have on me. I can only smile and nod back.

  He clears his throat and runs his hand across the stubble of his jawline, noticeably looking anxious. “Well, we better get in there before the bidding starts. It was nice seeing you again.” He smiles up at me, and it’s the most drop dead sexy dimpled filled smile, that I almost jump into his arms. Just as a smile starts to creep across my lips, I’m shot back to reality. I remember Dave. I remember he’s dead. I remember my pain. Before I can break my gaze from his, he reaches out and takes my hand politely in his. “You look beautiful tonight, Jess.” He leans down and kisses my hand before turning and walking out of the room.

  I’m left standing there stunned when Joey makes his way over to me nodding in the direction that Gage just headed towards. “I haven’t gotten to see Gage yet. I’m so glad he came. Ready to eat?” he asks, taking my arm in his and leading me to the dining room.

  Luckily I made it through my speech with ease and feel more like myself, hopefully making Dave proud. When I’d gotten up to the podium and looked out to the prestigious guests, I felt brave rather than sad or nervous. There were so many people here to celebrate Dave and to support the foundation I’ve poured my heart and soul into this past year, that I couldn’t help but feel proud. When I began speaking to our guests, it felt as if Dave was standing there with me, cheering me on as usual. I looked out over the crowd at my friends and family smiling when each of our eyes met. At the end of my speech, something inside me stirred causing me to look to the bright blue pools of hope from before. There was a slight smile perched on the side of his mouth when he noticed my gaze fall to his, and I finished my speech looking at no one but him. Something about Gage made me feel calm. Maybe it’s that I know he’s one of the few people who actually knows the loss I feel, and maybe some of it’s that he is just so damn hot. Whatever it was, I didn’t look away until I made my way back to my seat.

  Throughout the auction, I can’t get the look in Gage’s eyes out of my mind. He is sitting a few tables away with a group of guys I know to be Joey’s friends, and I spend the entire time trying not to look his way. There’s a battle going on inside me because I don’t want to be drawn to him in any way. Yet I am, and all I want to do is to capture his gaze again.

  When he bids fifty thousand dollars to rent the McMillan’s house for one night, his gaze meets mine, this time with smoldering eyes, as he throws back his drink. I can’t help but wonder how he can afford to spend that kind of money on a house rental, and what he could possibly want with a house this big for one night. Is he a playboy like Joey? It makes sense, most of Joey’s friends who aren’t married are just as hot and just as slutty as he is. I hope Gage hasn’t turned into one of them. But that isn’t my business, and I have no idea why I care. I mouth thank you to him, not able to think of what else to do when he doesn’t break his gaze from mine and turn to Cam who is looking at me with a huge shit eating grin on her face.

  “What. Was. That?” she asks with her voice raising a decibel with each word causing both Holden and Joey to look my way.

  I try to put on my most innocent face and take a sip of my wine. “What do you mean?”

  Joey and Holden both look at Cam confused. She twists her face and smiles. “That look between you and Dr. McSteamy is what I mean.”

  Holden and Joey both raise their eyebrows, and I let out a stunned breath trying to hide the affect his look has on me. “I’m not sure what you mean about ‘look’. I ‘looked’ over at him when he spent fifty thousand dollars to donate to GoodFellas.”

  Just when Cam is about to call me out, Joey interrupts. “Dude’s got a shit load of money. His parents own a ton of hotels. He’s an only child like us and has more money than even me. So don’t get your panties all wet, that’s a drop in the bucket for him.”

  So many questions are stirring inside me and I’m glad when our attention is directed to Dave’s mom who’s now speaking. She’s such a strong woman, I’m glad she’s able to tell everyone about the man Dave was. My speech was filled with facts about GoodFellas, the only time I mentioned Dave was at the end, when I said I hoped he was proud of all we’ve done in his name, because saying anything more would’ve been too hard. Dave’s mom begins speaking of his loyalty, his bravery, and most of all his love of family. She speaks eloquently, even through her tears, telling the crowd of his love for me and our daughter. Then, unexpectedly, the screen behind her changes from projecting the foundation logo, to a slide show of Dave and our life together that begins to play to “Mine Would be You,” our song. The tears that I thought would be kept at bay tonight teeter at my lids as pictures of us as children flash on the screen. When the final picture of Dave, Charlotte, and me huddled together in a beach blanket on the last Memorial Day we spent together freezes on the screen, all of my composure unravels. Cam, Holden, and Joey all reach for my trembling hands in support, but their eyes are also filled with tears.

  When a loud cheer breaks out and people start chanting Dave’s name, the last piece of me disintegrates. The pride and love I feel for Dave in this room is suffocating, because I want more than anything for him to know how loved he is. But he never will.

  I look up at my friends in desperation. “I just need minute. Excuse me.” When they all move to follow me, I just hold my hand out, silently asking them to let me be alone.

  “We’ll be here waiting for you Jess.” Holden’s voice is assuring and steady as always. I smile back at him and walk out of the room, trying not to make eye contact with anyone.

  I rush through the kitchen, knowing the guests would not be allowed back here, and make my way out to the beach. I toss my black sequined shoes onto the deck and start to make my way to the lifeguard stand hoping to get a moment to myself and gather my emotions. Tears are teeming down my face, but I need my hands to hold this heavy gown up while I trudge through the damp sand. For the first time thoughts of anger at Dave for leaving me assault my emotions. I never thought it would be this hard. People always say time heals, but it’s been over a year, and it feels harder today than it did a year ago. I go through most days trying to do everything I can not to think of Dave, only allowing those thoughts at night when I can drown in th
e emotions they bring.

  “Is that you, Jessica?” His deep voice startles me and I jump back when he walks from the other side of the lifeguard tower. Gage reaches out and catches me before I tumble backwards onto the sand. He pulls me up and looks down at me and wipes the tears from my face with his thumb sending unexpected shivers through me.

  I let my dress fall to the sand and wipe away the rest of the mascara filled tears on my face. “I didn’t think anyone would be out here. I just…wanted some air.” I can’t think of what else to say.

  “I needed some air too. That video was intense, even for me. Are you alright?” he asks running his hand across his jawline again, drawing my attention to his full lips. I hate what his presence is doing to me tonight.

  I nod my head. “Yes.” He rolls his eyes and shakes his head with a sarcastic laugh at my obvious lie and I smile a little through my tears. “No, I guess not.”

  He starts to reach his hand out to me but then pulls back, wringing his hands together as if he’s trying to keep himself from offending me with his touch. He looks out to the ocean and we both stand there in silence for a moment. “There isn’t a day that passes that I don’t miss my wife, Cassie.” I look over at his somber face and he turns to me with those hypnotizing eyes. “It’ll get easier, Jess. I promise.”

  I try to smile and look out to the ocean, not able to look at him and talk of Dave. It feels like a betrayal when I get lost in his blue eyes. “What if I said I don’t want it to get easier? It feels like if it doesn’t hurt, then it wasn’t real.”

  I feel his hand slide across the palm of my hand, forcing me to look up at him. “Do you think that’s what he’d want?” His words cut at me. It’s as if Dave is speaking through him. He lightly squeezes my hand before letting it go. “I’ll let you be alone now. “ His confident demeanor turns soft for a moment. “It really is nice seeing you again, Jessica.” He turns and begins walking back to the house.

  I sit down in the sand, watching the waves crash against the shore, trying to focus my thoughts on Dave and away from Gage’s eyes. Waves of guilt mirror those in front of me, forcing me to close off my heart and remember that my heart will only every belong to Dave. No one else.

  Dave

  There are no words to describe how beautiful Jess looks tonight. Stunning? Gorgeous? Alluring? Magnificent? No, none are powerful enough. The way her long blonde hair flows down her back in loose curls complimenting the deep green dress that’s molded to her every curve is breathtaking. Her frame is smaller than before, which worries me, but she still looks like an angel. When I see her face, I notice the sadness that is evident in her eyes and I wish there was something I could do to make it go away. The guilt she feels when she’s happy pulses between us, and there’s nothing I can seem to do to make her know that I want her to be happy. I need her to be happy before I can be fully free to move on.

  I notice all the looks she gets as she and Joey make their entrance into the benefit and swell with pride just like I used to when she was on my arm. While I feel relief knowing our friends have taken such good care of Jess since my death, I wish that Jess would be able to break from the emotional wall she’s erected and not have Joey as her date tonight. Joey has stepped up more than anyone, taking Jess and Charlotte to every holiday party or required event, but it’s time for that to change. Joey needs to move on with his social life just as much as Jess does. Jess needs to get out, see people, socialize like she used to instead of burying herself in the foundation and Charlotte. She hardly comes up to breath anymore. As proud of her as I am about all of the happiness she has brought to other families through GoodFellas, I wish she’d find some happiness herself. Jess’s smile is one of the best things about her, and I hardly ever see it anymore.

  The day Jess decided to name the foundation GoodFellas, I was swept into the memory of years ago. It was Christmastime in 1999, and was the first night the guys and I were home from Yale. Jess and Cam were still in high school and were playing in a basketball game, having no idea we decided to come home a day early to see them play in a big game against the toughest team in the state. We had it all set up with the Dades and had seats saved for us in the same spots we always used to sit in when we went to school together. Jess hated that I could never come to any of her games, especially since they were a top rated team in the state. Jess was the point guard and Cam was the off guard. They were each other’s perfect partner, complimenting each other’s abilities on and off the court. Jess was aggressive, and intense, while Cam was calm and deliberate with every decision she made.

  The three of us were able to sneak in though the back door, able to conceal our presence from most of the other students there to watch the game until half time, when we were swarmed by our old schoolmates, and girls all vying for Joey to make them his one night stand at the after party. Joey never brought along any of girls he dated, he always said he hasn’t met anyone worthy to join our group yet. I remember the way everyone commented how the five of us were the tightest group of friends they had ever seen. That was probably the first time that the three of us really realized how our group was perceived by others. While Holden and I were in love with Cam and Jess, the five of us had a bond that was unbreakable. When we were all in high school together, we rarely did anything without each other, and now with the distance between us, instead of drifting apart, we were only more bound together than ever before.

  The game started up again, and our friends went back to their seats helping to keep our arrival a secret from the girls. I still couldn’t believe Jess and Cam hadn’t noticed us, but they were always too focused on the game to care who was in the stands.

  Joey leaned over to me and Holden laughing about the attention we had all received about our surprise arrival to their game. “Hey, how come we’ve never named our gang? All these years together as best friends and we never thought to do it? A group as cool and good-looking as us should have a name.”

  Holden laughed and looked out at our girls dominating on the court. “That’s a lame ass idea Joey. Now shut up and let me watch my girl kick some ass.” Just then, Jess passed the ball to Cam who ran a route to the deep corner and scored a three pointer with ease.

  We all high fived and began hooting like we always did when were excited for something, causing both girls to finally look our way. I’ll never forget the look in Jess’s eyes that night when the recognition of my presence crossed her face. Her eyes lit up like firecrackers and she smiled so big, that it made my heart skip a beat. She mouthed that she loved me, before putting her full attention back at on the game. I remember thinking that at the moment in my life, there was absolutely no doubt that I was going to spend the rest of my life with her. I loved her so much, so completely, that I always thought it was too good to be true.

  That night after the game, we went back to Joey’s beach house with a large group of friends to celebrate their win. Jess and Cam showered and came down to the party in sweats and no make-up looking more beautiful than any of the other girls all done up with gallons of make-up on here tonight. The four of us decided to take a more mellow direction of our night and went up to the theater room and watched GoodFellas together. It was my favorite movie, and I loved watching it on the gigantic movie screen that covered the entire wall of the room. There were two rows of eight worn brown leather recliners in the burgundy room, perfect for spreading out and getting some private time with my girl. Leaving the party to go watch a movie was really just an excuse to have Jess in my arms for the next two and a half hours.

  “Do we really have to watch this again?” she asked sliding onto my lap with a blanket topped with popcorn and sodas.

  I took the bowl overflowing with popcorn and Cokes off the blanket and she spread the soft cashmere blanket over us. Now that my hands were free, I pulled her close to me, taking her face in my hands. Every time I looked into her eyes, my heart skipped a beat. “I was kind of hoping we wouldn’t be watching much of the movie.” I leaned in and brushed my l
ips across hers, watching as she closed her eyes and let out a sigh.

  “I missed you so much,” she said breathless as I ran my hands under her sweatshirt, tracing up her back while I kissed up the side of her neck, taking my time. I wanted nothing more than to have her beg me to never stop.

  I slowly made my way across her ribcage, causing her to angle her body, begging for me to touch her. I brought my mouth to hers right when I took her full breasts in my hands, pouring my need for her into each swipe of my tongue. A whimper escaped her when I traced my free hand down her stomach and circled her belly button. I tickled my fingers across the waistband of her yoga pants causing her to lift herself, begging for me to fulfill the need that was pulsing through both of us. I heard the sounds of yelling from the movie going on in the background, but all I could do was think of how much I wanted to feel Jess right then.

  “You’re going to make me explode Jess, be good,” I part whispered, part growled, unable to control the desire that was driving me insane.

  She gave me that devious smile that makes me hard, and gripped me, moving her hand up and down, allowing me to slip my hand easily across the elastic barrier of her sweatpants and under her barely there panties. When I rubbed my hand across the slick folds of her sex, she responded by kissing me with such passion, that I almost came undone right then. She pulled back and looked at me, her lips swollen from our kiss and her full chest heaving up and down. She looked around, assessing our company, only to see that Holden and Cam were also not paying any attention to the movie, and instead enjoying their time together after so long apart. When Jess turned back to me, her face was pulsing with a sultry expression, still breathless, her eyes begging for me to take her, but not here, not now. We’ve waited too long to share it with anyone else.

 
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