I silently walked out of Ren’s condo through blood-soaked eyes. Small red drops littered the ground where I walked, and a great stinging sensation was pulsating through my face.
But even so, I was happy.
“O-Oh my gosh, Connie!”
My sweet wife… Despite me suggesting that she go to sleep, she insisted on coming with me so late in the night… Ah, she’s so caring — and that’s why I love her! Or this wasn’t a ploy to get near Ren, was it? Oof, I hope it wasn’t!
Valerie ran up to me and put her hands at my side. Her face was inflicted with fear, and her movements were reckless.
I spoke as if nothing was out of the ordinary to calm her down.
“Oh, hey babe. What’s up?”
“C-Connie, you’re bleeding!”
Valerie took a cloth out of her brown purse and started gently patting my face with it.
“Yeah, crazy, right?”
Valerie gently pulled away as I turned my head in reminiscence. I was a bit more serious now.
“You see, this was Ren — though I suppose I should have been more graceful when saying that…”
I then signalled her to follow me as I started to slowly walk down the hallway. Blood was still dripping down my face, leaving stains on the carpet — I should probably be more concerned about them…
I turned my face again. I looked thoughtful…
“Eh, I guess it’s similar to what happened way back when we were in high school. Sometimes, you need a good punching bag to realize something — I was just acting as that dummy for Ren!”
Hm… Why did I do this? In truth, Camryn isn’t my top priority. Yes, I feel that Camryn, an orphan who suffered a childhood of abuse, needs a loving adult. But — sorry Camryn — I didn’t get myself beat up to get you that.
I quickly put my hand on my cheek it throbbed in pain.
No, this was never for Camryn’s sake… No — this was all for my best friend… Ren’s been trapped in his shell of loneliness for years, and I’m using Camryn to break him out.
“C-Connie, are you okay?”
“Oh, yeah, I’m fine… But can you please drive us home? I think I’m gonna bleed out soon.”
“Huh? Yeah, of course… J-Just don’t move your head too much!”
It’s all perfect… I think the only reason why Ren’s isolated himself for a long time is that he feels that no one needs love from him. There are plenty of other people to do the job, so he passes the job onto them — not because he’s lazy, but because he thinks he won’t do a proper job… But it’s different — Camryn is here. She can’t rely on anyone other than Ren, so Ren is more inclined to care for her. Also, she grew attached to Ren, so she can’t back down… But her faith is shaking — she doubts that Ren cares for her… But he does, and all he needed was that little push to realize.
I wonder… Will Camryn be strong enough to break the shield around Ren’s heart?
Bailey wasn’t lying when she said her schedule was flexible. It was almost noon, and I was sitting in her car as we drove down the streets of Tronito… It was hot out and bright out. Large crowds of people walked down the streets to their destinations. They were either looking straight ahead, smiling as they spoke on their phones, or bobbing their heads as they listened to things through their headphones…
I was sitting in the passenger seat, and I turned my head to look at Bailey beside me. She was wearing a grey business dress.
The area we were driving through was congested with cars, so we were moving slowly and we were constantly making stops.
I took a deep breath…
“U-Um… About what I said last night…”
She nodded as she kept her eyes in front of her.
Can I ask her about this? I mean, it’s a big request… And with everything I know about her, I don’t know whether she can provide or not. But… I still want to ask this. I guess it’s because I feel closer to Bailey than anyone else I met…
“S-So… Um… W-Why are we going to Mr Morales’ condo?”
“Hm? It’s to return you to him. I’m sure he’s worried — remember what I said last night?”
“Yeah, b-but there’s also what I said last night…”
She quickly turned her head to look at me dipping my head.
“I… Well, I really don’t know if he truly cares…”
“Ah, don’t worry about that!”
I saw the corners of her lips raise.
“Camryn, he does care about you…”
But how can I be so sure? With everything, I’ve encountered… And there’s also his relationship with everyone else. He treats them as strangers, so does he care about them?
As I was about to bring up more concerns, Bailey spoke.
“You know, you should be more direct with what you want. What’s your question?”
“Well, there’s no way you wanted to bring up something you already knew. So, what’s your true question?”
I see… She can really read people… I guess I can’t hide it from her.
I deeply exhaled and braced myself.
“Bailey, please let me stay with you!”
Woah, that was fast…
“Y-Yeah… Sorry, that request was probably too much…”
She shook her head once again.
“Eh, that was probably a little rude. Camryn, I totally would let you stay with me. I mean, Ren’s apartment is nicer, and he’s a little more suitable to suit multiple people, but I think I’d do a pretty good job as well… However…”
“I think you should stay with Ren instead. You’re scared, right? You’re scared that Ren doesn’t feel anything for you, right?”
“Well, don’t worry — once again, I guarantee that he does. I mean, you’ve been with him for a month, so you two definitely became affectionate for each other…”
Bailey’s voice grew softer.
“Well… Just stay with Ren.”
She then reached her hand out and laid it on my shoulder.
“And… If it doesn’t work out — and I doubt it will — then sure, you can stay with me…”
“O-Okay… Thank you, Bailey.”
Bailey retracted her arm and placed it on the steering wheel, all with a smile on her face.
Well, here goes nothing… I’ve been through many rejections, and despite my worries, why do I feel like I really want this relationship to work out?