*This is the longest story I have, and it’s cut down quite a bit.*
Night was barely falling in the hot dry heat of my hometown. I was relieved that I had put on a sundress at the last moment before leaving my parent’s spare bedroom. The slight breeze tickled my cleavage and wafted into the open skirt of the navy blue dress, dotted with tiny flowers in shades of gray and blue. I was only visiting a week, and had run into an old friend, Tom, who immediately invited me to a barbeque at his house. I was a little unsure, considering it had been 8 years since I had last seen any of the people that would be there.
Familiar faces swirled about me, asking questions on my life, job, etc. Tom helping me remember everyone and trying to include me in the conversations. There was one man there, I did not recognize, and he appeared to be a friend of everyone. I stared, trying to place him, only barely concealed by the glass I held to my mouth. I took him in completely, jeans, sky blue button down shirt, cap, boots. I could see his sideburns were a light reddish color, a weeks worth of beard across his jaw and square chin. His smile was wide and infectious. I stepped out of the throng of people surrounded me, his eyes finally finding mine. The smile wavered a little, before he put it firmly back in place. He dislodged from his group some, coming closer to me. I set my glass on the railing of the deck, I felt him approach, prickles of apprehension racking my body. When I turned to face him, I still couldn’t figure out who he was. All I knew was the attraction pulsing within me, urging me to smile and tuck a strand of chestnut hair behind my ear.
“Could I get one of those?” He motioned to the cigarette in my hand.
“Sure.” Still smiling, composure waning, as I passed it to him, fingers brushing. The cigarette between his lips, one hand cupping the end. The flame lit and made his face more visible. I knew him somehow… I stood in a stupor as he took the first drag, then flicked the ash.
“How have you been Quinn?”
My forehead pinched as my eyes looked at him curiously.
“I’m sorry, I just can’t seem to place you. I feel as if I should, but my mind is a little weak at the moment.” I tipped my head to indicate the cold glass beside me.
“Wow, what a bitch you are still. It’s Matthew. Matt.” His smile was gone, instead two hard lines of lips pressed together.
“Seriously? Call me a bitch, when I never did a thing to you. You’ve only treated me with disgust since I met you.” My jaw had dropped at his admission. I couldn’t believe this man I had been lusting over all night, was Matt. Or Matthew now apparently. I felt fifteen again, cowering under his cruelty. I walked away, into the house and closed the bathroom door.