Breathing Ch. 02bytheonlinestalker©
I just wanted to say thank you for all of your comments. Even the one telling me how confusing my pronouns are. This chapter my strike a few chords in people. Just remember that it will eventually get better for her. I hope you enjoy.
It had been two days, twelve hours and thirty-two minutes since Sonya had talked to her mom. And it had taken all of her strength not to reach for the picture she had hidden in the drawer beside her bed. It was of the last day she had seen Sean. He had been down at her while she smiled at the person taking the picture. It had been some random stranger passing by and just like Sean he had asked him to take a picture of them.
The look on his face reminded her of how much he had loved her, and how their lives were starting the next day. She'd never have to worry about anything. Yet here she was with her hand touching the handle to her bedside nightstand. Her hand shaking as she tried with all she had to stop from pulling it open.
She had to remember the promise she had made to her mother. She was going to try moving on. What that meant she had no idea. She had been moving on since that day. She had gone back to school and was now about to graduate in less than a month. Her life hadn't just sat still. Every day it pushed forward, leaving behind a piece of him as it did.
Which on some level pissed her off, but she was still standing and that was something no one seemed to take into consideration. She had wanted so badly to crumble and self-destruct but that was never an option.
And so she forged on.
The sound of her phone caused her to blink her eyes rapidly as she noticed she was still staring at the drawer that held her picture. Her gaze diverted to the phone vibrating silently above her.
"Ignore," she whispered as she let it go to voicemail.
It was the fourth time that morning that her screen had lit up with that name and each time she had ignored it allowing it to go to voicemail. Seconds later a sharp chirp signaled that yet another message had been left. In the past two days she had received numerous messages from her and even though they lived together, Sonya made it her mission to not be at home when that traitor was there.
And although she knew the word traitor was kind of harsh it was the only way to describe the feeling she got when she thought of her. If there was one thing a person should never do, especially a friend, was involve ones mother.
"This is a waste of time," she whispered to herself. "Stop moping and get your ass up."
Her legs swung wildly off her bed as she touched one and then the other foot to her cold concrete floor. Why had she agreed to get an apartment with concrete floors? And why didn't she have an area rug in her room?
Sonya quickly slipped on her house shoes as she let out a loud yawn and stretched her arms above her head. A quick shower and some warm coffee should do it. The thought made her smile a little. The first time she had said those words Sean had laughed and said, "You mean hot coffee right?"
"No. Warm coffee—I know what I said," she had snipped.
"Isn't that kind of gross," he frowned.
"No. Besides how do people drink that scalding crap? No matter how much you blow on it the first sip always kills every taste bud on the tip of your tongue. Well no thank you. I love my taste buds too much for that."
A smile was the only response she got as he turned away from her and mumbled something she hadn't quite heard. "Say what?"
Sonya's breath caught in her throat as she watched him turn his head to look over his shoulder. Those green gems he called eyes always caught her by surprise. And that smile didn't make it any better.
"I said, 'Whatever you say Sonny.'"
And that had been the first time he'd ever called her by that nickname. It had stuck ever since and shortly after that everyone tried to use it. But Sean was the only person who ever got the pleasure of calling her by it, without getting a severe tongue lashing.
Even that had her smiling. Tongue lashing.
"You got something I wanna lash with my tongue," Sonya laughed as she stopped at her bathroom door.
Had she just said that out loud? No. She couldn't go backwards. She had to get those thoughts from her head. She needed them exorcised from her subconscious.
And so as she stepped into the bathroom she looked at her surroundings. At least nothing of significance had ever happened in this room. Slowly she slid the oversized black tee over her head letting it drop to the floor beside her feet revealing a pair of blue and white polka dot underwear. She always wore boy shorts. Sean had loved the way they made her ass look. And wearing anything else just didn't feel right anymore.
Leaning forward she turned the hot water on and let it run before adjusting the cold water in to get the right temperature. "Perfect."
She slowly shimmied out of her underwear kicking them over towards the hamper while pushing the shirt in the same direction. She'd pick them up after her shower when she was more refreshed. For now she'd just wash away all those memories.
The water hit her shoulder as she stepped in, closing the glass door behind her. Steam had already filled the room causing the glass surface to fog up. Her hand reached for the Raspberry body wash she always used, popping open the top to squeeze a small amount on her sponge.
As she swiped the soft material down her stomach, she closed her eyes and let the hot water wash over her body. The scent of raspberries wafted towards her nose and she tilted her head back to run the sponge up towards her neck.
It was then that she felt strong hands moving around to rub her stomach. A soft gasp escaped her lips and she would have opened her eyes had it not been for the raspy voice whispering for her to keep them closed. With the slight nod of understanding she held her breath as she felt calloused fingers lightly tracing a pattern around her belly button.
Hot air flowed over her neck as she felt shallow breathing caress her there. "Tilt your head."
It was definitely not a request as she felt one hand moving her hair to the side while gently applying pressure. The hand on her stomach had stopped making circles and was now moving painfully slow towards her aching center. Every fiber of her wanted to scream for him to speed up. To put her out of her misery, and still he did not.
"Did I tell you how beautiful you looked today, Sonny?"
Again no words escaped her lips as she mutely nodded her head again. "And how did I tell you? Like this?" he whispered as he lightly kissed her neck. "Or like this?" he rasped as his fingers finally found what he had been searching for, moving his thumb over her clit slowly.
"God," she whispered.
"Yes?" he laughed.
A soft snort left her as she thought of how only he could make a joke at a time like this. And then as quickly as the touching and caressing had begun it all just stopped.
Silence was what greeted her this time. And when she opened her eyes she realized that she was very much alone. And the once hot water was now getting cold. Just like her heart.
"So much for escaping memories."
And just like that she heard his voice again. "Those little bastards do have a way of ruining a good thing."
Closing her eyes once more she let the cold water wash over her, mixing with the tears that now streamed down her face. "Yeah. They really do."
It had taken her awhile before she had composed herself enough to get out of the shower. The sting of cold water pelting against her skin was one reason. The other reason was that the longer she stayed in the shower, the more she thought she heard Sean. It was quickly driving her crazy. And so she stepped out on the bathmat and grabbed the towel hanging above the hamper.
Normally she would have toweled off in the bathroom, but she couldn't bear to stay in there a second longer. They had never even made love in her bathroom and yet there he was. Naked, wet, and soapy. Telling her things she wanted to hear from him. Needed with all of her soul to hear him whisper in her ear, and all she could think was how unfair life could be.
Opening her door, she frowned. Sitting on her bed was Cameron. Her face was looking down towards the ground, but quickly looked up at the sound of the door opening. The remorse on her face was evident and for a second Sonya felt bad about giving her the silent treatment.
The words were spoken so softly that she almost missed them. Well sorry wasn't good enough right now. Especially if she wasn't going to say it like she meant it. When no one said anything, Sonya rolled her eyes and walked towards her closet.
"I said, 'I'm sorry Sonya!'"
"I heard you."
"That's it," she huffed. "You're still mad at me?"
"Yes that's it or yes, you're still mad at me?" she asked wishing for the first one.
Milk chocolate colored eyes met sea green as she simply said, "Both."
"You can't stay mad at me forever Sonny."
"I can if you keep calling me that."
"I've always called you Sonny."
"No. HE always called me Sonny. And if you want me to move on so badly, I'd advise you to stop calling me by it," she yelled.
"I—I'm sorry," she said, actually meaning it this time. "I didn't realize—I'm sorry," she whispered again.
Turning around to face her friend she looked at her for the first time in a long time. Her face was nothing like Sean's. Nothing about her was like Sean and yet when she looked at her all she saw was his face. She was missing him just like her. Maybe it was time to give her a break.
"I know. Just—no more Sonny okay? Sonny died a year ago."
Taking a step forward, Cameron wrapped her arms around Sonya. Letting her hands move soothingly up and down her back. "No she didn't. She's very much alive if you just let her up to breathe."
It was then that she tried to will away the tears. To stop them from falling down her cheeks.
"Maybe she should be."
"Nothing," she answered while trying to force a smile.
"You know what you need?"
"A drink," Sonya said.
"That too. But I was thinking to go out. Get something to eat. And before you say no, I don't mean anything fancy. Just downtown, somewhere off the beaten path."
"I don't know CeCe."
"Hurry and get dressed. Trust me on this. You'll feel a thousand times better," she smiled. And then she was gone closing the door behind her.
The sun beamed down on them both as they made their way through the crowded sidewalks. Walking downtown during lunch had seemed like a good idea to Cameron at the time. Now in hindsight she probably should have waited until everyone had gone back to their stuffy offices.
Too late for that now she thought as she grabbed her best friends hand and tried with all her might to get just one smile from her. So far she had failed miserably.
"Ooh, look. Sushi!"
"CeCe, you know I don't eat Sushi. How about—" she paused looking around to gauge her surroundings. It was then that she heard it. Her head snapped towards the sound as it faded to nothing. For a second she thought she was hearing things until it echoed all around her again. This time it was louder than it had been before. It was definitely the laugh from the party she'd been dragged to.
"There goes that laugh again," Sonya murmured.
"What laugh?" CeCe asked as she looked around. "No one's laughing Sonya."
"You can't hear that?" Sonya pointed as if she were pointing in the direction of the laughter she spoke of.
Cameron's head turned slightly to the left as she looked in the direction her friend was pointing. "No," she frowned.
"I'll be back."
"I'll be back, promise." And then as if she hadn't said anything she walked towards the sound of laughter that somehow made her stomach flutter with tiny butterflies. Its baritone sound echoing off the walls and slamming directly into her heart. How could she not hear this? It was so familiar and yet so different at the same time.
And then just like the week before it simply stopped. "What the hell," Sonya huffed.
This was becoming frustrating to say the least. Minutes passed and then what felt like five more minutes turned into ten, and nothing was happening. Not a single echo of laughter.
"I must be going crazy," Sonya said to no one in particular as she turned to make her way back towards CeCe, but instead collided with a wall.
The sensation of someone stepping on her toe combined with the force of their impact made her scream out. "Watch where you're—going," she finished in a slight whisper.
"Oh my god, I'm so sorry. I wasn't watching where I was going. I was trying to escape and you got caught in the crossfire," he laughed. But Sonya hadn't heard a word that he had said. Instead she simply stared up at him in awe. This was the laugh she had heard earlier and obviously the man she had seen the week before. Although she hadn't seen his entire face there was no mistaking that laugh.
And so she simply stared at him as if he was the most amazing sight to behold. This was apparently obvious because the man before her gave a shy smile before turning his head away.
"I'm sorry for staring. You just remind me of someone I—someone I knew once," Sonya finished, not being able to say the word love.
Standing before her was a man who greatly resembled her Sean. Yet she could tell it wasn't him. There was no fire in his eyes when they met with hers. No poorly hidden lust that always made her smile. Instead there was only the apologetic gaze of a stranger helping the woman he'd accidentally injured while trying to escape someone's company.
But by the look in his eyes, she could tell that whomever it was had quickly found him.
"Trent, there you are. I was looking everywhere for you. You just disappeared on me."
"Oh, yeah. I was going to get us a drink."
Turning her unnaturally sky blue eyes towards Sonya, the blonde gave the best smile she could muster before asking, "Aren't you going to introduce your friend?"
"What? Oh! I've only just run into her—"
"Literally," Sonya finished for him. "But thank you for making sure I didn't lose a limb from your clumsiness.
"No problem," he whispered and for a second she could almost hear a hint of something familiar. Something she hadn't heard in a year.
"Well I better get back to my friend, before she sends out a search party. It was nice meeting the both of you," and with that she walked away feeling as if she'd woken up for the first time in a year.
Trenton Sinclair looked on in dread as his girlfriend walked towards him. Her strawberry blonde hair gleamed in the sunlight as she bounced towards him at a rapid pace. She was really a very beautiful girl but in the past month he had found that he was growing tired of her company. Nothing she said anymore was of any interest to him.
Her body was that of a supermodel and he knew that she was every heterosexual man's dream. Except that she wasn't his dream anymore. She had become just an object to dangle on his arm when it suited him. Of course she was okay with that. He was exactly the same thing for her.
His cobalt eyes always made a woman's heart melt. It didn't hurt that he looked like the equivalent of a Greek god. He had a square jaw lined with a soft dusting of stubble that showed off his chiseled facial features. His mouth was a cute cupids bow and absolutely kissable with their pink hue. He could have anyone he wanted and yet the woman who he should want only made his skin crawl.
When she stopped in front of him she eyed the woman standing in front of her and leaned in to kiss him on the lips. The enormous glasses that she always wore whenever they went out sat securely on top of her head. If there were any celebrity that she looked like he would have to say it was Paris Hilton.
The thought made him frown as he watched her frown at the woman in front of him, quietly dismissing her as competition. But all he could do was look at her eyes. There was something about her that he couldn't quite place. It was taking everything in him to keep his hands planted firmly at his side. And to make matters worse he couldn't keep the silly smile off of his face for long. It was actually a good thing Amanda had walked up. Having her there tainted the moment and the frown he presently wore didn't take much effort.
"Well I better get back to my friend," he heard her say. And as she walked away from him, he felt his world get a little bit dimmer.
"Who was your friend?"
"Huh?" Sonya asked looking up at CeCe dumbfounded.
"The cutie you were practically drooling over," she laughed, nodding in his general direction.
"I was not drooling!"
Holding up her hands in surrender Cameron smiled, "Okay. Just don't kill me."
"Sorry. Just. Sorry," she frowned turning her head to look back at the mystery man. Trent.
And just like that, the guilt was back. She had compared him to Sean. Had seen his face when she looked at him. Would it be this way from now on? Now that she had been forced to remember him and try to get past his death.
"I want to leave," Sonya rushed out.
"We just got here."
"Now! I need to leave now!"
Her breath was ragged as she tried her best not to hyperventilate. This was becoming too much. It had only been almost three days and she wasn't sure she could do this. Even after she had told her mother not to rush her towards forgetting him, she found that she wanted to more than ever. The memories were becoming too much. And now they were manifesting themselves as if they were real.
Cameron could see the sheer panic on her friend's face and nodded her head slightly before grabbing her by the hand. With one final glance behind her, Sonya saw Trent staring at her over his girlfriend's head. The look in his eyes made her blood run cold. All she could see was the pale imitation of Sean and all of the promises that he never got to keep.
Outside the sun slowly drifted towards the horizon. After coming home she had spent almost an hour convincing Cameron that she was okay. Her friend was adamant that she didn't need to go on her date. She could simply stay home with her and they'd have a girl's night. But there was something much more important that she had to do. And Sonya didn't want her to be there while she did it.
She had even expressed this sentiment to Cameron but that didn't stop her from trying to convince her that she wouldn't be in the way.
"What's this big thing you have to do?"
"Don't worry about it Cammy," she smiled.
"Does it have anything to do with the man from earlier?" she asked, noticing that Sonya had called her Cammy. She never called her that. But she quickly pushed the thought to the back of her mind.
The mention of Trent made Sonya's smile falter. She didn't even know him and yet she had come to call him by his first name. Trent. Although it was his name, she felt that she didn't deserve to call him that. Not when she had tainted both him and Sean by mixing them in together.
"No Cam. It has nothing to do with Trent."
At the mention of his name Cameron's eyebrow lifted. "Trent? You got his name?"
"No. I mean yes—I mean...his girlfriend came up yelling it. He didn't tell me it," Sonya frowned.
"Oh. Well, then what is it about?"
"I just want to say goodbye. To Sean," she whispered.
"Oh! Sonny," Cameron whispered.
"Please, don't call me that."
The defeat in her voice was evident as she looked down at her hands.
"Yes. I forgot. Um. Well, I'll be gone for a few hours. But if you need me you call me okay. No matter what time. Promise me."
"I promise. But after tonight I won't need you to hold me up anymore," she whispered and then looked up at her best friend with a half-smile and the hint of tears in her eyes.