I zip up my bag and make my way downstairs. This morning I went to the studio where One Direction were doing some recording and said goodbye to them. Now it’s time for the tricky part: saying goodbye to 5 Seconds of Summer. I do not yet know if this includes Ashton, but we’ll soon find out. He knows that I’m leaving today, he knows that I won’t leave without telling the lads, so really it’s his choice if he decides to be in the bus to see me before I leave.
As I open the door to the tour bus I am greeted by Michael stuffing his face with pizza, Calum who is walking around in just his boxers and Luke who is playing some sort of video game.
Michael is the first to notice me and waves back, this causes Calum to turn around. “You’re flying today?” He asks me.
“Yes, my taxi will be here in ten minutes.” I reply and look around the bus without fully realising it.
“Practise.” Michael signs with his mouth still filled with food.
“I’m sorry?” I ask him, not sure what he means.
“Ashton. When Ashton angry he drums. All of today and y-e-s-t-e-r-d-a-y: drumming.” Michael sloppily signs, bless him for trying so hard.
“I don’t want to see him anyway.”
It’s a lie even though I don’t want to admit it. Saying I would like to see him before I leave is a lie too. See, I want both at the same time. I want to kiss him and tell him I’ll miss him while seeing him return those signs to me. I want to tear up when the car drives away, I want us to make promises about seeing each other again.
But at the same time I just want to leave and forget. I’m not sure if I want to forget how Ashton makes me feel or if I want to forget our fight, but damn how I want to just run away and not look back.
Luke has finally finished playing his game and has turned around to look at me. “S-t-i-l-l dating?” He signs to me.
“I don’t really know.” I tell him a little bewildered.
How do I know if we’re still dating? I told him to leave and he left. I don’t know if this is a temporary leave or one that will last forever, but I feel like his refusal to show up today say a lot. I don’t know if our fight automatically means we have broken up or that we’re still together until one of us sends the other one an awkward text message saying we shouldn’t see each other anymore or perhaps until one of us dramatically flies across the globe just to ask the other person for forgiveness.
I give all of them a hug as we sign our goodbyes and make my way to the front of the hotel where the taxi is supposed to come and pick me up. I can tell that a few fans that are waiting outside to catch only a glimpse of one of the two bands that are staying in the hotel are looking at me, eyeing me up and down and discussing whether or not I’m the girl from the pictures from when Ashton and I went on our date. I can tell one girl is about to come over and ask me questions that are probably going to be about Ashton, but she never gets the chance as I quickly get into the taxi that just pulled up in front of the hotel. I show the driver my phone with a message on it saying where he needs to drop me off.
I receive my boarding pass at one of the desks at the airport and drop my luggage off. I look at the ticket: Philadelphia to Manchester, I’m so far away from home I suddenly realise.
I keep glancing over my shoulder as I’m nearing security, hoping that somehow Ashton would’ve followed me to the airport like they do in romantic comedies. In my head a scenario of him running towards me, telling me he’s sorry for our fight and that he still cares starts playing, even if he wanted to come say goodbye still, he wouldn’t be allowed or able to leave the hotel without getting run over by fans.
I get mad at myself all of the sudden. How dare I think of stuff like this when I said I hated him yesterday? I’m still so mad at him. But why do I keep thinking of him? Why can’t my thoughts about him just stop? Why can’t I just let him go?
God, stop thinking like this, Beth! And I angrily march through the scan, collecting my purse and shoes on the other end of the conveyer belt as I aimlessly walk around the airport. As I’m waiting outside the gate on one of the chair my phone starts to vibrate.
From: Lucas Hemmings:
Ashton doesn’t look very happy, maybe you two should talk.
To: Lucas Hemmings:
I don’t want to talk to him, it’ll only result in more fighting.
I’m sorry Luke I’m about to board the plane, we’ll talk when I get back home xx.
I take my seat next to a tiny airplane window while a very professional looking woman takes the seat next to mine and I silently hope that she’s as antisocial as she looks. There have been some unpleasant times when strangers on busses or trains tried talking to me, it always ends in frustration, because I don’t understand them and have to eventually tell them I’m deaf by signing to them or else they’ll think I’m rude for not replying to their friendly small talk. Sitting next to a chatty person for a seven hour flight sounds like absolute hell to me.
I look outside the window and as the airplane loses its last touch with the ground, I feel all hope of seeing Ashton again leave. He didn’t stop drumming to come say goodbye, because he doesn’t want to see me. He didn’t stop the taxi to tell me he’s sorry, because he meant it when he said he gladly wants to leave me alone. He didn’t come running after me at the airport and kissing me passionately, because life just isn’t like the movies.
And somehow that thought breaks my heart and I cry, I cry until I feel so tired that I eventually fall asleep, because even when I hate Ashton I still care and it hurts knowing that he doesn’t care, not even a little bit, not even enough to wave at me from a distance as I stepped into the taxi.