4 years later
We marched down the rows, me wedged between Molly and Harrison, the only two people I got along with in the academy, until we reached the front and then everyone in the class lined along the front of the hall. We stood with our backs straight and our right hand saluting.
“The class of 2018,” Mr Morrison, the head director of the academy, announced. I could see my parents and Cindy sitting in the back row. Cindy who I managed to keep in touch with and the only one who could make it to my graduation since she already graduated three days ago. Cindy who was wearing a white dress that went up to her collarbones and down to mid thigh, with blue pumps and held onto a white clutch with crystals.
We began to chant our code as part of the police still holding our salute then began to sing our national anthem and everyone joined along, standing. Then they all seated and as did we. The graduation ceremony didn’t take that long and soon they were starting to call us up one by one for our diplomas.
“Officer Molly Bennet,” the announcer called. Molly stood up and her family cheered for her as they handed her diploma. She marched towards our teachers, shaking their hands each and when she got to our chief, they saluted each other and Molly walked away, grinning.
“Officer Georgia Brink,” the announcer called and I went to get my diploma then I walked across and shook hands with my teachers. They each told me congratulations and that they hope to see more of me and that I will get far and I will succeed in whatever I put my heart into. I finally got to my chief and saluted him. He gave me a proud smile.
“Well, Georgia I hope one day I find you solving crimes on tv,” he told me and I grinned.
“Thank you, sir,” I replied and I walked away. I glanced to the back of the room where my parents and Cindy were sitting. They were cheering loudly, all three of them standing up and my mom holding her new camera.
Once everyone received their diploma, our top of the class valedictorian, Michael Thames, said his speech. He spoke about most of our experiences and how we’ve all grown close over the past four years. It was a small class about 40 of us but we all got along surprisingly well with only a few mishaps. It was actually one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. When he was done we all stood and our chief commanded us to stand then commanded Michael to command us and we all followed. Then we marched back out of the hall. Once we all got out we grabbed our hats and threw them in the air with a cheer.
I was done. I’m 22 and I’ve finished all the schooling I needed.
I gave Molly a hug and yelled a congratulations to her before she went to her parents. I couldn’t find Harrison since we were all engulfed by our families. My parents and Cindy spotted me and immediately they called a congratulations.
“I’m so proud of you, sweetheart!” My mom said giving me the tightest hug possible.
“Thanks, mom,” I smiled then my dad hugged me.
“Congratulations, Georgia! I can’t believe you’ve already finished!” He exclaimed and I laughed.
“Thanks, dad,” I replied then turned to Cindy who squealed and gave me a hug.
“Congratulations, sweetie!” She said with a grin.
“Thanks, Cindy. I’m glad you can be here. Congratulations to you too!” I told her.
“Thanks, babe,” she winked. “College graduates! Well graduate, you’re a police graduate! I mean look at you. You have your uniform.”
I laughed. “I know. I look hot, don’t I?”
“Sure you do. I bet your boyfriend can’t keep his eyes off you!” She giggled.
“You bet he can’t,” I winked.
“Okay, girls, smile,” my mom called with the camera in her hands. We took a picture and I grinned, holding my diploma.
“And speaking of your boyfriend, where is he?” My mom asked. “I want a photo of the both of you.”
I shrugged then I caught sight of him and hollered him over. He went over to me with a grin then he picked me up and spun me around. I squealed and giggled.
“Congratulations, babe!” He said and gave me a kiss.
“Congratulations to you too!” I laughed.
“Okay, smile kids!” My mom exclaimed and we both smiled as she counted down but on the last second he turned and gave me a kiss on the cheek. Cindy aw’d at us and I giggled, tapping his nose.
“Harrison, you guys still coming over for dinner tomorrow?” My dad asked and he nodded.
“Now, if you’ll excuse me I need to get back to my family,” he excused and I nodded, pecking his lips.
“Tell them I said hi,” I told him and he mumbled an of course and left.
“You guys are so cute,” Cindy cooed.
“Thanks,” I replied.
“Okay, girls, I’m sure you guys are going out for a bit so we’ll just see you guys at home, okay?” My dad said and we both nodded and my parents walked away after one last hug.
“So,” Cindy started, “have you spoken to him since... you know, then?”
I shook my head. “ I don’t really want to, honestly. Have you?”
“Yeah,” she replied, “I mean, we’re still friends.”
I nodded in understanding. “Yeah, I figured.”
“He’s not angry at you. I hope you know that,” she told me.
I sighed. “Yeah, but I’m still half mad at myself.”
We went quiet after that, just standing awkwardly apart. Then I took a deep breath and plastered a smile on my face. “We should get going if we really want to stick with our plan.”
“Yeah, we should. Come on,” she nodded to her car, her black lexus that her parents rewarded her with when she graduated. I quickly changed out of my uniform into a black dress that hung loose down to the middle of my thigh with a gold zipper down the front and a nude collar that I had ready in her car. I put on my nude heels and put all of my essentials into the nude clutch I had ready. Then I took my hair out of its buns and let it fall into the curls they made.
“So how are you and Zayn going?” I asked her.
Zayn ended up going to Stanford with her and they met two years ago. I remember her calling me at midnight or something and she’s like ‘Zayn f*cking Malik is at Stanford and you never told me! Jesus, he looks hot!’ then she proceeded to tell me the details of how they went out for coffee and ended up having sex that night. I remembered how horrific it was but it was college and they ended up friends with benefits for six months then he started to like her and he ended it without telling her why and she actually surprisingly got really upset. And that was the night when she realised she sort of liked him and so she confronted him and they ended up getting together. So now, two years later they’re still going strong.
“We’re going great. He actually found an apartment we could live in,” she replied and I could tell she was actually pretty excited.
“Woah, so you guys are really serious,” I stated rather than asked.
“Yeah. I love him, Georgia,” she said, glancing at me for a brief second but it was long enough for me to see how much she really did love him in her eyes.
“Good for you,” I smiled.
“What about you? Do you love Harrison?” She asked me.
Harrison and I have been together for a year. We used to be best friends then he started to fail in his written exams and asked me for help and i guess we just started to like each other with every study date we had. Then he kissed me and I liked it so we ended up together. Do I love him? Yes, of course I do.
But do I love him as much as I loved him? I don’t think I can ever love someone as much as I loved him. But I had to move on and I did, three years later with Harrison.
“Yeah,” I replied truthfully.
“Okay, let me rephrase that. Do you love Harrison enough to make you forget about him?” She asked.
“Oh come on, Cindy, I don’t think I could ever forget him,” i replied truthfully.
“And again, I will rephrase that into something a lot more clearer and specific. Do you love Harrison more than you loved Niall?” She asked and finally there comes the taboo name that I refused to say even in my head. Cindy had no problem with it. As much as she likes me and Harrison together, she likes me and him more.
I took a deep breath. “No.”
“I can’t believe you guys broke up,” she muttered as she turned the car into Olive Garden.
“Cindy, it was almost four years ago. I’m over it and you should be too,” I told her with a small laugh although it was killing me to talk about it.
“Zayn spoke to him a few days, you know. He still doesn’t have a girlfriend and he just finished his degree in engineering,” she told me.
I knew he did engineering, even though in the first semester we had, the only semester I did at UCLA, he was undefined like me but I decided to do policing. I haven’t spoken to him since I left but Cindy randomly gives me updates and for some reason I always remember every little update she told me. I was actually surprised that he doesn’t have a girlfriend because he is an attractive guy and he could get any girl he wants. it kind of made me guilty being with Harrison.
“Good for him,” I murmured.
Cindy sighed. “Okay, let’s finally eat here because I’ve been dying to eat here for ages.”
“Okay, but no more talking about him. Please,” I half begged and she nodded.
“Fine but only because I don’t want you start hating yourself again,” she told me and I laughed.
“Thanks,” I said sarcastically.
After dinner with Cindy, we drove to Hollywood for a party that Cindy heard of. When we arrived she immediately went to look for Zayn who texted her that he was here with a friend. When she found him, she jumped on him straight away and they started to make out like no tomorrow. I rolled my eyes at their public display of affection and slowly trailed over to them.
It wasn’t until a few minutes that I finally found out who his friend was. And jesus christ, I wished I never found out who his friend was.
“Hi,” he said quietly.
“Hi,” I half squeaked. I took a deep breath to calm myself down and tried so hard to avoid his blue eyes but I couldn’t. They were just there, burning bright as ever and I had to keep repeating to myself that I have a boyfriend, that I have a boyfriend that I love and I can’t do this to him.
“How are you? Do you want a drink?” He asked and I nodded so he took me to where the bar was and poured me some beer.
“I’m doing great, by the way. What about you?” I asked him.
“Fine,” he replied and I wished that he told me more but I knew he wouldn’t.
“Congratulations on graduating,” I said after a moment’s silence.
“Thanks. You too,” he replied then we fell into a silence again and I prayed to god that Cindy was finished reuniting with her boyfriend that she saw yesterday because I don’t think I can keep talking to him any longer. It hurt to talk to him and it’s even worse knowing that I hurt him a lot more than this three years ago.
“I like your hair,” he commented. I almost forgot that I dyed my hair red and cut it shorter than, just past my shoulders.
I subconsciously played with my hair. “Oh, thanks.”
“But I liked your golden hair more,” he said quietly and i had to take a deep breath to stop my chest from hurting more. I didn’t respond after that. I didn’t know how to. It was different between us, a lot different than I wished it was. But I guess that’s what happens when you grow apart.
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