Off The Cretan Track Chapter 41

Off The Cretan Track Chapter 41

A Chapter by Repgreece
"

Nick confides in Adam

"

Nick felt slightly guilty for not answering the telephone call when Adam phoned him, but he simply couldn't speak to him in the state he was in. When the text message came through however, he felt that he had to reply.

 

I'm okay thanks. Jen's gone to a meeting at the airport. Might as well have stayed in bloody Matala!

 

He wished he had stayed there too...with Sal... and made love to her, not some cold hearted control freak, out of some misguided sense of loyalty. He felt almost dirty...used.

Throwing the sheet back suddenly, he jumped out of the bed, turned on the light and made for the bathroom. He needed to shower...wash her off him...feel half decent again.

He was still in the shower, trying to shut off his troubled mind in the soothing warmth of the water, when he heard the knock at the door. It couldn't be Jen; she'd not even have reached the airport yet, and anyway, she had a key. Maybe it was Maria from the reception, wondering how many more nights they'd be staying there; he'd forgotten to let her know.

 

Pulling a towel from off the rail, he wrapped it around his waist and headed for the door.

 

"Oh, hi," he said with surprise when he opened the door to see Adam standing behind it.

"Hey there, alright if I come in?" Adam asked.

 

"Sure," Nick replied, opening the door wider and turning to walk across the room, where he grabbed a pair of shorts from out of his open suitcase and changed into them. "You alright?" he asked Adam. "How's things?"

 

"Not bad, but I was going to ask you the same question. Is Jen giving you a hard time again?" Adam asked, taking a seat in one of the purple, upholstered arm chairs by the window.

 

Nick Sat on the edge of the bed and ran his hands over his head at just the mention of her name. "When does Jen not give me a hard time?"

 

Adam winced in sympathy. "I feel for you mate."

 

"And when she's not giving me a hard time, she's not here. I really don't know why we're still together," he went on.

 

"Why are you still together?" Adam asked. He'd wondered that himself on a few occasions. Nick had been going through strife with Jen even before they had returned to the UK together. He was surprised that they were still a couple.

 

Nick sighed. "I don't know. She doesn't seem to want to let me go."

 

"So why don't you let her go?" Adam suggested.

 

Nick ran a hand through his hair. "I dunno. Our relationship got swept along; I didn't really have much control over it." He thought for a moment. "When I first met her, I was sure for a while we'd be good together. She'd been through s**t in her past, like me. I thought we'd understand each other. You know, be there for each other. I guess that's why I feel I should stick with her; I made a promise." Adam sat and listened, letting Nick voice his thoughts. "But mate," Nick went on, huffing and shaking his head, "she's got major issues. I know it sounds lame, but I can't cope with the way her head works. She's screwed up and I don't think I can hack it."

 

Adam waited until Nick had finished before speaking his mind. "Nick, if a person has been through a lot of hardship and turmoil in their life, the last thing they need is to be with someone else who's been through just as much. Two hurt people can't heal each other, only hurt each other more. You need someone stable, who knows her own mind and can be understanding of your past," Adam pointed out. "And Jen needs the same. You're not doing either of you any good by staying in such a dysfunctional relationship."

 

Nick had listened thoughtfully to Adam's advice and sighed. "Yes, I know. I kind of realised things weren't going to go well last summer, but then, when it came to the winter, she was going back to the UK and I had a lot to face over there, and I kind of didn't want to do it alone. But then, I ended up alone anyway while she was dealing with her family, and before I knew it, she was talking about us moving back here together again. Damn it, I just wanted to get back here quickly though, so I left early," he explained. "But now I feel bad; she had a funeral to go to and her family gave her a hard time about stuff. I guess I shouldn't have left her alone like that. Then she comes back here upset and... I'm involved in the relationship again."

 

"How about getting uninvolved?" Adam put to him.

 

"I want to," Nick stressed, "more than you realize, but... she's gonna put up a fight you know."

 

Adam frowned. "Nick, you can't be afraid of her."

 

"She's damn scheming when she wants to be Adam," Nick said. "It's not so much me, but other people I'm worried about."

 

"What do you mean?" Adam asked.

 

"Well, Sal for a start. Jen's got it in for Sal and she'll look for someone to blame if I split up with her. I don't want Jen going near her. We spend a lot of time together. Jen thinks there's something going on behind her back..."

 

Adam rose an eyebrow and cut in. "And is there?"

 

Nick's heart thudded suddenly and, for a split second, he was tempted to tell Adam how he felt about Sal, but caution took over. Adam wasn't the most subtle person in the world when it came to relationships, and he would go straight to Sal and tell her. He'd be meaning to do good, but God, if Sal didn't feel the same and it suddenly became all awkward between them, he'd be gutted.

 

"No. You know me and Sal; we're just good friends," he replied. "But Jen won't believe that. She will think the break up was to do with Sal."

 

Adam contemplated Nick's dilemma. "But Sal can stand up for herself, and she has enough good friends around her too. What could Jen actually do?"

 

"You'd be surprised. And then there's you," he said, cautiously, pausing to see Adam's reaction.

 

Adam's eyes darted away from Nick then and he caught hold of the side of the curtain, peering around it to glance out of the window.

 

"What about me?" he asked quickly.

 

"Don't tell me you haven't thought before it was the fact Jen was with me, that stopped her from making a play for you again," he said.

 

Adam swiftly dropped the curtain and turned to look Nick in the eyes. "No, you're wrong there," he said adamantly. "The reason she won't push it with me is because she knows I love fay. God damn it, she must know; I called Fay's name out while we were having sex!"

 

Opps, perhaps Adam shouldn't have blurted that out to Nick, but he had always assumed that Nick knew he'd slept with Jen; everyone else in Agios seemed to know.

 

Nick had wanted to talk to Adam about this for a while now, but had always been worried that it would affect their friendship. He was quite glad now though that they were being open about it.

 

"Okay, let me ask you something: if you were so into Fay, how come you ended up sleeping with Jen?" Nick asked.

 

Adam became very still, but eventually spoke up. "I was upset and very drunk. Jen knew it and...well, she practically threw herself at me, sorry Nick, but she did. You do know that this was before you were with her, don't you?" he asked.

 

Nick nodded. "Yes, of course I know that. But there is my point in your answer; she's so damn manipulative. You didn't want to be with her, but you ended up in her bed anyway."

 

"Woa, hold on; you're not suggesting that she'll do that again are you? And that I'll fall for it."

 

Nick shrugged.

 

"No, you're so wrong there. Not now that Fay and I are together. I would rather chop my right arm off than do anything to jeopardise what we have together," he stressed.

 

"Maybe, but I'm just saying..."

 

"No maybe," Adam cut in. "Don't use me or Sal as an excuse not to split up with Jen. We are big enough to look after ourselves, and we can deal with Jen; the question is, can you? And, do you want to enough?"

 

Nick thought about that. "God, yes I do," he suddenly realised. "I wasn't sure before, although I was pretty sure, but something was holding me back. Now though, after tonight, yes, I'm sure," he concluded.

 

"Well then do it, face Jen and tell her," Adam urged. "What happened tonight?" he asked, back tracking.

 

Nick groaned. "Well…" he paused awkwardly, "we had sex," he finished. What was the point in trying to sugar coat it?

 

Adam hadn't expected him to say that. "Oh, I thought you'd argued or something."

 

"Not really," Nick answered.

 

Adam shook his head; he was confused. "Err, okay, right…sorry, why was that so awful?"

 

Nick stared at Adam, wondering how much to tell him. In truth, Nick did want to offload some of the emotional turmoil he'd felt that night, and Adam was a good listener, and a good source of advice.

 

He sighed deeply. "It's even more complicated than you think."

 

"More complicated?" Adam said incredulously. "Right, out with it. This is going to get sorted now. I've never known anyone with so many complications," he pointed out.

 

Nick laughed. "I know. Sorry mate."

 

"Don't mention it. What are mates for? Now, what else is on your mind?" he asked.

 

"The thing is," he took a deep breath and dived in, "I have feelings for someone else." Nick's voice betrayed the inner nervousness he felt about vocalising that statement. Then he added quickly, "I haven't cheated on Jen though."

 

Again, Nick surprised Adam; it was a pleasant surprise though. "That's good," Adam replied brightly, "that you like someone else."

 

"Yes it is but…" Nick was horrified then to feel tears prickle the back of his eyes at just the reminder of what he had done tonight, and how he'd ignored his feelings for Sal. "But, oh God, I'm so mixed up," he admitted. "Strictly speaking, I did nothing wrong by sleeping with Jen. I should feel like I'm cheating on Jen for having feelings for someone else, but instead, I feel like I've cheated on...this other person."

 

Adam was itching to ask who this other person was, but Nick wasn't offering that information. Still, he couldn't help but try to find out.

 

 "Is 'this other person' anyone I know?" he asked, as casually as he could

 

Nick's heart beat nervously. He shook his head.

 

Adam didn't entirely believe him, mostly because there were very few people that he didn't know in Agios. Nevertheless, if Nick wanted to keep that to himself, Adam would respect that and not pry.

 

"Does this person know how you feel about her?" Adam went on.

 

"No", Nick replied.

 

"Okay, well, do you think she feels the same about you?"

 

"No," Nick said at first, before hesitating and adding, "I don't think so." He sighed, "Oh, I don't know; I'm not sure."

 

"So she might?" Adam pushed

 

"Anything's possible I guess," Nick was forced to admit.

 

"Hmm, well the problem is, if she does feel the same about you, she'll never let you know how she feels if you're still with Jen," Adam pointed out.

 

"No I guess not," he agreed, "but I've never really seriously thought that the two of us could be together, so splitting up with Jen hasn't been a priority as such, up until now."

 

"What, apart from the fact that Jen is seriously screwed up and messing with your head in the process?" Adam said sarcastically. "Nick, whatever the reason, splitting up with Jen should be a priority… for your own sanity."

 

"Yeah, I know. Or at least, I can see that now," he replied.

 

"Good." Adam was on a roll now, and determined to put Nick in the right frame of mind. "So, about this other woman…"

 

Nick's heart picked up its beat again.

 

"…just how much do you feel for her?" Adam asked.

 

Nick began to feel fidgety. "What do you mean?"

 

"Alright, I guess what I'm asking is, are you in love with her?" he asked boldly.

 

Oh hell! Nick wasn't prepared for that question. "I don't know," he answered.

 

Adam frowned. "What do you mean, you don't know?"

 

"I aint ever been in love with anyone before, so how am I supposed to know?" Nick said defensively.

 

"If you were, you'd know. You can't be in love with her then," Adam concluded.

 

In that instant, Nick felt suddenly sick with panic, as though just by hearing that, he'd lost something so incredibly important to him. On instinct, he spoke without realising he was going to.

 

"I am in love with her!" he blurted out defensively, shocked by his own admission.

 

Adam seemed equally shocked and surprised. "Oh mate, that's great, but what are you still doing with Jen then? It doesn't matter if you're not sure about this woman's feelings for you, the fact is, that while you are still with Jen, this other relationship is never going to stand a chance."

 

Nick felt the panic rise again at that thought. He ran a shaky hand over his face, to hide the moisture. "I've seriously messed up, haven't I?"

 

"No you haven't, not yet," Adam replied, a little exasperated. "Stop giving yourself such a hard time. If you want this woman, and you think she'll make you happy, fight for her with everything you've got, because people like that don't just pop up every day you know."

 

Nick contemplated Adam's animated face. He was so sure of everything, and he always got what he wanted. He'd heard a million times about how Fay had snubbed Adam in the beginning and yet he still managed to win her over.

 

"Do you think I can make her fall for me?" Nick asked suddenly.

 

Adam smiled. "Yes, yes I do, if you offer her the things she needs to be happy, then yes. Of course you could do with going to the gym a bit more mate," he said, gesturing to Nick's bare chest. "You know, make yourself a bit more attractive to the opposite sex."

 

Nick frowned and looked down at his upper body. He thought he was well toned enough.

 

"Yeah?" he replied uncertainly.

 

Adam burst out laughing. "No mate, I was kidding! If you go to the gym any more, you'll show up the entire male population of Agios! Come on, get some clothes on, we are going to Sal's place," he said, standing up decisively.

 

"We are?" Nick answered with surprise, his heart thudding at the mere mention of her name.

 

"Yes, we are. Come on," he urged, when Nick still hadn't moved. Nick stood and headed for his suitcase. "She's down in the dumps tonight as well; I don't know what it is with everyone tonight," Adam added.

 

At that, Nick's head shot up. "What's wrong with Sal?"

 

"Ah, she's just a bit tearful. Fay's with her though," Adam answered.

 

"Tearful?" Nick repeated with concern.

 

"Yes. Nothing happened in Matala did it?" Adam asked.

 

Nick's face lost some of its colour as he slowly stood, with a clean t shirt loosely held in his hand.. "Damn!" he exclaimed.

 

"What now?" Adam asked.

 

"I completely forgot; I was too concerned about being in trouble with Jen. Sal had a bit of a shock earlier today. But thinking about it, she seemed okay when we got back." He growled with anger at himself. "But obviously she wasn't. Damn it, I should have made sure she was alright though before I left her."

 

Adam shook his head in confusion. "What are you talking about? What kind of a shock?"

 

"She got arrested," Nick said simply.

 

Adam's eyes widened. "Man, trouble seems to follow you around."

 

"It was okay, just a misunderstanding, but…"

 

Adam cut Nick off. "Listen, put that on," he gestured to the t shirt in Nick's hand, "and let's go, then you can see for yourself that Sal's alright. I said I wasn't going to be long; Fay will have my guts for garters."

 

"Okay, I'm ready," Nick said, after grabbing his key and wallet, and pulling the t shirt over his head as he strode over to the door behind Adam. "Let's go."



© 2012 Repgreece


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Added on October 20, 2012
Last Updated on October 20, 2012
Tags: love, romance, fun, friends, summer

Off The Cretan Track