I woke up to the sound of Luke talking, “Charli?” he shook my body, I opened my eyes a little bit, and looked into Luke’s blue eyes, he was wearing black skinny jeans, and a white top “yeah” I said groggy, and sat up, “Vivian is here” I nodded and ran a hand through my hair, which was a mess, “I’ll be down in a second” Luke nodded and went downstairs. I quickly brushed my hair, and took some black jeans and a grey t-shirt on.
I hurried downstairs to find Vivian sitting at the kitchen table, “hi Vivian” I said and put on my best fake smile, I didn’t really like her or the management, but they paid me, so I had to put up with them. “Hello Charli” Vivian said, and hugged me, “how are you?” we both sat down at the kitchen table “I’m good” I said. Luke came a little after with a bowl of cereal and sat down next to me, Vivian cleared her throat, “we have decided that Luke shouldn’t attend any more AA meetings, we can’t risk them finding out about him, it was so close yesterday” I clenched my jaw, the anger made my heart beat faster, “I think that’s a bad decision” I said through gritted teeth. “All we care about is Luke getting better, and we think it would make it worse for him if the people found out” Vivian answered dryly, “all you care about is his fame, not him” I spat, not able to stop myself, Luke looked at me in surprise, “that’s not true” Vivian said annoyed, “our decision is made, we pay you to keep him from drugs, if you can’t do that without those stupid meetings, then maybe you aren’t the right person for the job” I huffed, but didn’t say anything, “now tell me Ms. Williams do I need to find a new sober coach?” I had to fight the urge not to punch her, I shook my head “no” I hated the way she looked at me, she knew she had won, and she loved it.
She said goodbye to me like nothing had happened, and drove away. Luke and I was still sitting at the kitchen table, “can you believe her?” I asked, the blood was pumping through my veins, “I actually agree with her” Luke said quietly, I looked at him, “what?” he shrugged, “my career would get ruined” I understood that his career meant a lot to him, but this was unbelievable.
“I have to go, are you fine on your own?” he looked at me confused, but then nodded, “good” I said and grabbed my jacket.
I drove to Gabe and I’s place, and hurried inside in fury, I knew it was unprofessional to storm out, but this was unbelievable, I was so mad. I stormed up the stairs and went inside to our apartment. “Gabe?” I called, I didn’t expect to find him after some he had school, but I found him in the living room, “hey babe, what are you doing here?” he was wearing a blue t-shirt, and black skinny jeans. “I needed to get away from Luke’s, what about you? Don’t you have school?” I sat down next to him, and wrapped his arms around me, “I was, but then our teacher got sick, what happened?” he asked stroking my hair, I sighed and told him what had just happened.
“He took her side, can you believe that?” the anger was back, “yeah, actually” I removed his arms from me, and looked at him with a raised brow, “it’s his career, you should know how much that can mean to one” Gabe said shrugging, “yeah, but-“ I didn’t know what to say, maybe Gabe was right, we looked at each other in silence.
“Come here” he said and opened his arms, I let him wrap them around me again, “but what if Luke relapses? Then it’s their fault” I said, Gabe groaned loudly and let go of me, “can’t we for one second stop talking about Luke? It’s seriously all you talk about” I looked at him with a mix of hurt and anger in my eyes, “I’m sorry, but this is my job, I don’t stop you when you talk about engineering” I shot back, “that’s because I don’t talk about it all the time, it’s like you have a crush on him or something” I stood up, and put my hand on my hips, “excuse me?” I asked not able to comprehend what he had just said, “Do you have a crush on him?” Gabe spat, he was only a couple of inches away from my face, the vein on his forehead was popping “no!” I yelled, “He’s just a client” I barked, how dared he say that, “he doesn’t seem like ‘just a client’” Gabe said making quotation marks with his hands, “what happened to ‘I trust you babe’?” the tears was burning in the corner of my eyes, “that was before I thought you’d actually fall for a dumb stoner” the first tear rolled down my cheek, I wiped it away with my sleeve, “I don’t like Luke, trust me” I begged him, Gabe shook his head, “please go” I looked at him the tears was streaming down my face, “please, trust me” I begged him again, “please Charli, go” Gabe was also crying now. I grabbed my jacket and walked down into my car, before I started sobbing uncontrollably.
I sat there crying for a little while, before I pulled myself together, and started to drive home to Luke. I fixed my makeup before I went inside, my mascara was all over my face.
“Hey” Luke said when he saw me, I hid my face so he couldn’t see my red puffy eyes, “hey” I said my voice was hoarse, “are you okay?” Luke asked with concern in his voice, “yeah, I’m fine” I said, but I didn’t sound very convincing, “is this about what happened before?” Luke stepped closer, “no, I’m fine” I lied, and hurried into the bathroom before he could ask me another question. I turned on the hot water, and stripped out of my clothes, the tears was burning in my eyes again, but I held them back, and tried to focus on the hot water running down my body.
I jumped out of the shower, and took my pajamas on, it was only 7PM, but I wasn’t planning on going out tonight, unless Luke had something planned.
I walked into the living room and sat down next to Luke who was playing a video game about shooting, “hey” I said, he quickly looked at me before he looked back at the screen, “hey” he said, and shot a man in the game, “what are you playing?” I asked, while he shot another man, “Call of duty: Black ops” I sat down next to him, his character was in a forest hiding behind a tree, “wanna play?” he paused it and looked at me, “sure” he stood up and found another controller, and handed it to me. He explained to me what the buttons did, but I had already forgotten most of it when he pressed play.
“You suck” he said laughing after I had died for the 6th time, “I just need a little practice” I said while smiling, we hadn’t gotten very far because I died all the time, “to be fair this is a hard level, should we start from the beginning?” Luke asked pressing pause, I nodded “yeah”.
He went back to the menu and started a new game, “okay, so just follow the instructions on-“ he didn’t even get to finish his sentence before I got shot. “Sorry” I said laughing, he hit my arm playfully, and restarted the level, “okay follow my instructions” I nodded, “okay so the X activates auto aim” I looked at him confused, the only thing I’ve ever played on PlayStation was the Sims, he laughed, “just press it to shoot” I nodded. As it turns out I’m actually pretty good at ‘Call of Duty’ we played it for at least couple of hours.
“Are you hungry?” I asked after my stomach growled for the third time, “yeah” Luke said, and shot a British commando, I paused the game, and went into the kitchen, Luke followed me, “I don’t feel like cooking” Luke said, I looked in the fridge, “me neither, should we order takeout?” I asked and closed the door, “yeah, but we should hurry, the good ones closes soon” I looked at the time, it was almost 12AM, “wow, I thought it was like 11 or something” Luke and I had played for almost 5 hours. We decided to order Chinese from a place downtown, one of the only places that were open around this town. The food came pretty fast, it didn’t even take 30 minutes like they had said, probably because nobody ordered takeout this late.
“We should go to bed after this” I said, I could finally feel myself getting tired, “if we hurry we can get up early and complete the game tomorrow” Luke said and stuffed his face with noodles, “yeah” I said, and finished my chicken dish, I had eaten fast because I was so tired, ”goodnight” I said and went upstairs, I didn’t even acknowledge if Luke said it back.