Always One More 13

Moving the dogs into the garage he made his way up to the second floor.  He made his way to the master bedroom and found himself standing in an empty room.  He took a deep breath then moved into one of the guest bedrooms and found her curled up on one of the beds, still in her clothes on top of the covers.

When he saw her he instantly melted.  He was going to miss that.  Watching her sleep calmed him.  He'd spent so many nights of their relationship sitting up at night doing that.  He wasn't sure what he'd do with his nights now.  He'd have to figure something new out to lull him to sleep.

That's when it hit him the hardest.  He'd been leaning on her for a long time now and he needed to start doing things for himself.  He'd done his best to get along on his own, knowing that he was trying to get her back, but now he needed to do it for himself.  He needed to get out there and plan things for his own good instead of hers or theirs.  He needed to do this for himself.

He moved over to her and kissed her softly on the top of the head before pulling a blanket around her.  By the time he was back downstairs and on his way to the car to drive over to Mere and Justin's his eyes filled with tears.  He was glad he hadn't put in his contacts that morning.

*****

Knocking on their door the next morning was probably the hardest thing that Chris had forced himself to do.  It was even harder for him to do then to actually tell Dani that he was leaving.  They'd tried so hard to keep him and Dani together and as much as he was disappointed for his own loss of her companionship, he really was more worried about the two of them.  They would now be stuck in the middle again.  He didn't think that he and Dani would have a feud going on between them like most couples would have if they broke up.  They were all a little more mature than that.

"Chris?" Meredith asked as she pulled the door open.

"Sorry to come over so early, but I wanted to say goodbye."  He nervously touched his glasses.  "I'm going up to Pittsburgh for a few days.

Her shoulders slumped as if him saying this to her in person only confirmed a rumor she'd heard.  From her reaction she didn't seem to pleased to be hearing the truth.  "Justin told me," she said, "I was just making coffee.  Do you want some before you go?"

"Sure," he said and snuck in the door.

She closed the door behind him and walked with him into their kitchen.

"How's Tegan doing?"

"Great," she said, "I wanted to thank you again for what you did.  I know Justin made a huge deal about it, but we both are really grateful for it."

"No troubles," he said, "I'd do it for anyone's kid."

"Well," she said, "I just want you to know that we're all grateful."

Chris blushed and slid into a chair.  "I'm going to be gone for a few weeks," he said, "Maybe two or three depending on what's going on in Pittsburgh--but when I get back I'll baby sit for you again."

"That'd be great," she said, "I hope you don't stay away too long."

"I'll try not to," he said.

Meredith brought him a mug of coffee then returned with milk and sugar.  "How's Dani doing?"

"I slept on the couch last night," he said, "I told her I wanted her to move out and then basically disappeared down into the TV room and stayed down there this morning so that I wouldn't wake her up."

"You didn't say goodbye?"

"Nope," he said and kept that little part of him to himself.


When her cell phone rang that morning she grabbed up and looked at the number and saw that it was Liam.

"Hello?" she asked and sniffed.

"Hello there Hockey girl," he said with a lively tone.

"Hi," she said and laid her head back down on the pillow.

"What's wrong?" he asked, "I didn't keep you out too late, did I?"

"No," she said, "I got into a fight last night when I got home."  She shook her head.  "And well the drama of my life has thrown me for a curve."

"Are you alright?" he asked, "I'm about to start my shift, but--"

"Yeah," she said with a sigh, "I'll be fine.  I just need some time alone for a few days.  It's nothing that you did or anything, but I need to get some things settled before we can talk again."

"Sure," he said.

"No," she said, "I mean it.  I'm not blowing you off.  I'm just postponing this for a while until I get my business straightened out."

"I understand," he said sounding instantly depressed.  "Call me if you want to talk."

"I will," she said and hung up the phone.  Keeping it in her hand she rolled over and tried to get back to sleep.

*****

When her cell phone began to ring the second time that morning she pulled it open and said hello.

"Dani?"

When she heard that it was Chris she sat up and turned around to lean against the pillows.  "Yeah?"

"Honey, I'm about to get on my plane, but I wanted to say goodbye.  I know that what I've said sucks and that it's not right,"  He sniffed, "But I can't be like this anymore and neither can you.  It's not fair for either of us."

"I know," she said realizing that it really was the truth.  Sometimes saying goodbye was the thing that had to be done.  The thing that you do when you really do love someone.  To step back and let go was probably the better things for them.  "I know."

"But I meant what I said," he said, "You need me and I'll be there.  There'll always be one more day--"

"I know sweetie," she said, "I know."

"I love you," he said, "I have to go."

"I love you too," she said.

"Call me when you get settled ok?"  Chris said, "If you need anything call Justin and Mere."

"I will."

"I love you," he said one last time then hung up.

It was all too rushed and all too complicated and yet there was online one thing to say to him.  He had to say goodbye and she needed to do that too.

 "Good-bye."  She said it to the dead line.

 

THE END


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