“What are you doing?” I ask her, shoving my head under the pillow, trying to block the early morning light from my face.
“I don’t want to.’
“You don’t have a choice. I’m not going to let you sit around the house and mope, so let’s go.” She says, pulling me up into a sitting position.
As she walks out of the room, I decide she’s probably right, so I get up and start getting ready.
I drag myself lazily into the bathroom where I look at myself in the mirror. I’m not gonna lie; I look like shit. I spent most of the night crying, so my face was puffy and my eyes looked tired and empty.
I have no interest in looking special, so I throw my hair up into a bun, and put on a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt. Sarah walks into the bathroom and asks, “You ready?”
“Yeah.” I tell her, and then we both make our way out of the apartment.
We get into the car and she tells me we are going to get some coffee. She parks a few blocks away, so we get out of the car and head to the shop.
“Do you think I did the right thing?” I ask her as we walk down the street.
“Absolutely. I mean I told you what I thought. He was such an asshole Anna. Don’t worry, you did the right thing.”
I take a deep breath and say, “I know, it was something I had to do, it just wasn’t working for me anymore. I don’t think it was working for him either he just wouldn’t admit it. But Sarah, before I left he was yelling after me saying he loved me. I think driving away from him at that moment was the hardest thing I have ever done.”
“I know sweetie but you did what you had to do, what your heart told you to, and that’s all that matters.”
“Hellooooooo.” I yell walking through the house and into the living room. When I enter, I see Nick sitting on the couch staring blankly at the TV screen.
“So what are we watching this morning? Power Rangers again?” I ask sarcastically, walking into the kitchen.
“Shut up AJ.” He says in a heated voice.
“It sounds like someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning.”
“What the hell are you talking about? What’s over?” I ask as I scan the fridge for something edible.
“She left me.”
I stop moving things around and turn back to face the living room.
“What?” I ask in a shocked tone. I can’t believe she actually did it.
“She dumped me. Told me it wasn’t working anymore, that we wanted different things. She wants a family, I want to party. She thinks she doesn’t fit in my life. And don’t you dare say I told you so.”
“Dude, I’m really sorry, and I wasn’t gonna say that.”
“I still love her man.”
I just stand there looking at him. I can tell by the look on his face he means it. I don’t think he realized how much he was hurting her, so this came as a surprise to him.
“What do I do now?” he asks looking up at me.
“I don’t know…I really don’t.”
When Sarah and I finally reach the coffee shop, I sit down at a table outside as she goes in to get our drinks. It’s pretty crowded, so I take the last remaining table in the corner. I sit down and take of my sunglasses sine we’re in the shade. Looking around, I notice a few people, well women and girls mostly, staring at me. Thankfully, Sarah comes out about a minute later and hands me my latte.
“Hey those people are staring at you.” She says as she sits down.
“Yeah I noticed.” I say trying not to pay attention and taking a sip of my drink.
“Well, make a face back.”
“If you won’t then I will!” She says and sticks her tongue out and crosses at two teenagers who were sitting across from us. As soon as she does, they both turn around.
“Yeah you mind your own business.” Sarah says to them.
“Oh God, I can’t believe you just did that.” I say laughing.
“Finally I got a laugh out of you! I’ve been trying all damn morning.”
We sit there talking and drinking our coffee with the continued staring and pointing. When we finish, we both stand up, but as we start to walk out I feel a tap on my shoulder. I turn around to see a girl around me age, standing behind me.
“Um sorry to bother you, but you’re Anna right?”
“Uh yeah.” I tell her.
“Is it true?” She asks.
“About you and Nick, that you two broke up. It’s all over the tabloids and I saw it on the news last night.”
“Oh uh yeah. Sorry, but I have to go.” I tell her as I turn back around and Sarah and I finally leave.
As we walk down the sidewalk back towards her car she says, “Sorry I didn’t say anything to that girl. I should have stepped over and just told her to fuck off.”
“Oh jeez, I know you’re just trying to look out for me but you don’t have to be mean to do it!” I say laughing at her again.
“I’ll be mean to whomever I…..holy shit.” She says stopping in the middle of the sidewalk.
“What?” I say to her. I follow her gaze to see what she’s looking at.
I hadn’t realized we were walking past that same magazine and newspaper stand where I had found that first magazine with Nick and I on it. This time, instead of the usual lovey-dovey pictures of us that graced the tabloid covers, there were the pictures from yesterday, from when we broke up. If it had only been one magazine I wouldn’t care, but the whole stand was covered with the pictures on the different covers.
I walk closer to examine the pictures.
“Anna, come on, let’s just go.” Sarah says to me, but I don’t answer her; I just keep staring at the magazines.
Looking at these pictures brings a whole new wave of sadness over me. I guess that’s the price of dating a celebrity, having to deal with people knowing about your life, but to me, we were just two people in love, and now that we are broken up, the whole world knows.
“Anna!” Sarah yells, and I snap out of my trance. She grabs me by the arm and we quickly walk back to her car to go home.
*Later that Night*
Ever since we got home this morning from coffee, I have been on this couch, just sitting. The only times I got up were to go to the bathroom and get some more ice-cream out of the freezer.
“Are you sure you don’t want me to stay home with you tonight. I can totally cancel my date.” Sarah says walking into the living room.
“No don’t do that. Go, I’ll be fine. Besides, aren’t you going out with the same guy you’ve been seeing for the past two weeks?”
“Yeah, crazy huh?” She says with a small chuckle.
“He must be special if he gets more than three dates with you, when was the last time that happened?”
“ I donno, maybe like 4 months, but I do like him a lot. And he’s here!” She says as the doorbell chimes. Sarah rushes over to the door as I sink further into the couch, not wanting anyone to see me looking as shitty as I am.
“Wow, you look great.” I hear him tell her.
“Thanks, you’re not looking bad yourself. Scott, that lump on the couch over there is Anna, and Anna this is Scott.”
I turn my head and look him over. He’s tall with brown hair, green eyes, and he’s built. Not bad.
“Hi.” I say waving to him.
“Hey. I’m really sorry about you and your boyfriend, I saw on the news that you broke up…..”
“Ok, we’ll just be leaving now, if you need me you know you can call.” She says quickly shoving Scott out the door.
I try to push the comment to the back of my mind and refocus all my attention to MTV.
After watching three episodes of Laguna Beach that I have already seen, I decide I’m sick of it, and as a commercial comes on, I start looking through the couch cushions for the remote. Before I can find it, an MTV News Break comes on and starts talking about some artist’s new CD or something like that, I’m not really paying attention but then I hear, “And in other news, Backstreet Boy Nick Carter and his girlfriend Anna have called it quits in a dramatic scene yesterday that took place outside of his house….”
“FUCK!” I yell at the TV as I finally pull the remote out and quickly turn it off, and right as the screen goes black, I hear a knock at the door.
I get up off the couch and open the door to see AJ standing there.
“Nice mouth.” He says walking into the apartment smiling.
“I just got pissed, and it’s not like you don’t cuss, so I wouldn’t be talking.” I say walking back over to my spot.
“So how are you?” He asks, sitting on the arm of the couch.
“I’m…I don’t even know, but if Nick sent you here then just go.”
“He didn’t send me. I came on my own.”
“Ok then, what’s up?”
“Nothing, I just wanted to come and see how you were. Did you go out or do anything at all today?”
“Well Sarah and I went for coffee, but that didn’t go to well. So other than that I just sat here all day.”
“Ok, well get up.”
“No not again, Sarah made me leave this morning and you’re not going to make me do it now.”
“Oh come on, you need to get out. It’ll help I promise.”
“Stop whining, come on.”
“Not until you tell me where we’re going.”
“I donno, let’s just go to a movie or something.”
“A movie. On a Saturday night. At 8 o’clock. Are you crazy? There will be TONS of people there and everything will probably be sold out.”
“No, not everything will be, so let’s go.”
“Ok, lemme just go get ready.”
“No time for that, you look fine.”
“Are you serious? I can’t even go put on some makeup?”
“Nope. We’re leaving now.” He says grabbing my arm and pulling me out the door.
*10 minutes later*
We walk from the parking lot to the theater and get into the line for tickets, which, as I predicted, was not short.
“Nice job Mr. Know-It-All. I told you it would be packed.”
“Don’t worry we’ll see a movie.”
When we get to the front of the line, every movie had already started and the only one that had tickets left was a kiddy cartoon, so we got two tickets.
“You want any food?” he asks as we enter the theater.
“Uhh yeah candy. I always get gummy worms when I see a movie. It’s just a habit that I’ve had since I was a kid.”
“Aww how cute.” He says in a high girly voice.
“Oh shut up!”
We walk over to the snack counter and get my gummy worms, then head to the right screening room.
When we walk in, I see that there aren’t too many adults in the theater but there were a lot of kids. Tons of kids actually. AJ and I take two seats at the very back of the theater just as the movie starts.
I lean back in my chair, open my gummy worms, and throw some into my mouth. I feel AJ’s arm reach into the box and take some out too.
“Heyy.” I say pouting my lips.
“Shh the movie’s starting.” He says smiling.
“Oh the movie’s starting my ass, stay away from my worms.” I say laughing.
During the movie it’s hard to concentrate due to the fact that there were kids on a sugar high running around, up and down the aisles. I found myself watching them more than the movie. At one point one of then came to the back where we were sitting, stood there, stared at us and waved. AJ and I both started laughed and waved back, and then the kid just runs away again.
When the movie is over, we make our way to the parking lot and get back into the car.
“So how’d you find out that Nick and I…”
“I went to his house. He was pretty upset. He still loves you, ya know.”
“God, maybe I messed up. All day I have been asking myself if I did the right thing. Sarah says that I did, and I’m almost 100% sure I did, but there’s that 1% of me that tells me I still love him and I shouldn’t have left him.”
“Well , from what you told me when you were with him, you were never happy. Yeah, there were moments when he would be there for you, but didn’t you tell me that most of the time he wasn’t? From what I saw, I think you did the right thing. He’s one of my best friends, but I can’t back him up on this one. He did always go out, no matter what he might have said.”
“I figured.” I say leaning my head against the window.
He looks over at me and then says, “Don’t worry, you’ll make it through. I know it.”
When we get back to my apartment, he walks me up, and after I unlock the door I turn back to him.
“Well I hope you had fun.” He says grinning at me
“Oh I did.” I say leaning over and giving him a kiss on the cheek. “Thanks AJ.”
“You can call me Alex. Everyone who’s close to me calls me that.”
“I’ll try to get used to it.” I say smiling.
“Good. Bye sweetie.” He says, and turns away to walk down the hall.
I head in and go directly to my bedroom, where I let myself fall onto the bed. I needed that. I didn’t think about Nick at all, the only time was when we were talking about it in the car, and he really helped me realize that what I did was the right thing.
I think AJ…wait, Alex, was right. I think I’ll be able to get through this.