“Marleeeeeee!” I love Trisha so much but sometimes, her squealing hurt my ears. I don’t know what got her so excited to see me when we were just together yesterday, rehearsing for the song I’ll be singing tonight. She took me in a big embrace and gave me a bit of a squeeze. “What took you so long? They’re already setting up inside. I thought you weren’t coming.”
I laughed. Tonight’s going to be the first time I am going to sing in the pub where Trisha works. She’s been nagging me to try it, even just for one time, but I kept brushing her off. The idea of singing in front of people hasn’t really been appealing to me. I am only doing this for Trisha since I’ll be leaving in a couple days. My three-month visa is going to expire then. And Trisha has been the best person I have met. This was the least I can do for her.
“So, were you able to sleep last night?” Trisha asked as she handed me the chords to plug into the amplifier.
I inserted one chord at a time. “Of course. As much as I hate doing this tonight, I’m not gonna deprive myself of some decent sleep because of it, you know.”
“Stop being so grumpy!” Trisha teased and tossed some chords to my feet. “Anyway, let’s grab something to eat. We still have a few minutes to spare before you’re big concert tonight.”
I stuck out my tongue at her and laughed. “If it wasn’t for Mark, I never would’ve done it. I just hate how he’s being so nice to me.”
Trisha jumped down from the stage and smiled at me teasingly.
“What?” I raised an eyebrow at her.
“Do you like Mark?” she whispered but it still came out a bit louder.
I choked a laugh. “Where on Earth did you get that idea?” I said and shook my head.
Trisha has been constantly pushing me to go out and have a date with a few guys. My past relationship was a mess and she wanted me to just get over it. It has only been less than two months since I had my heart broken and I really don’t think that seeing someone new is something that would help me move on. I’d have to move on by myself. And although the thought of having someone make you feel special is quite tempting, I’d rather not. I still feel too messed up to go ahead and start another possible disaster.
But Trisha — no matter how many times I have told her that I don’t want to see anyone — kept on pushing the idea. Every time some random guy says hi to me when I’m in the pub watching her sing, she would instantly say things like, “He’s cute! Did you give him your number?” or “I think he’s really into you. Give him a chance!” I just shake my head no with whatever she says. I made it clear to myself. No more. Or at least, not yet.
“Hey, Mark is not bad,” she pushed.
I laughed again. I just don’t know why I am friends with her. She’s just too unbelievable some times. But, I still love her despite all her crazy attempts to get me with a guy. “I didn’t say he was. What I’m saying is, I just don’t want a relationship right now.”
She walked over to the edge of the stage and grabbed her bag. “Said the same thing about singing here. And look what happened.”
I took my wrap from neck and threw it at her. “Stop pushing it!” I took my phone from the stage and turned the lock. I don’t know why but I kept checking it for a text that I know I shouldn’t even be expecting. And of course, still nothing. Just one missed video call from Mom. I keep forgetting that I’m thousands of miles away from home and that Mom’s probably freaked out ‘cause I haven’t called her in days. I haven’t told her what happened. I just don’t want to talk about it yet. Besides, I’ll be back home in a couple of days so I’ll just tell her then.
I slipped my phone to my back pocket and pretended that it didn’t bother me that I did not get any text from him. I shouldn’t even be bothered, really. Still, a part of me hopes that he thinks of me every now and then. Because I still think of him. More often than I should, really.
“So,” Trisha hooked her arm on my mine as we walked down the street to grab something to eat before tonight. “What do you want?”
“Hmm,” I looked around. I don’t really feel hungry. My appetite has been this poor since the terrible break up. I just can’t bring myself to eat anymore. I don’t starve myself, though. I eat but in very, very, small portions. Sometimes, I would eat breakfast and not have a single meal the whole day. I don’t know if it’s depression taking over me or what, but food doesn’t seem to be in my system right now. “Maybe, just coffee. I had a heavy breakfast,” I lied. If I told Trisha that I am not up for eating, she’s gonna start with a lecture on why I am burdening myself of the break up when I should just get over it. And then she would start with the dating thing again that she’s always in the mood to talk about.
“Do not tell me you’re not in the mood for food today ‘cause I swear to God, I am gonna buy a freaking big corndog and shove it in your mouth, whether you like it or not,” she snapped.
I just laughed. It’s nice to actually have her around. You know, besides the constant push for me to start dating again, Trisha’s one of the best people I have met here in London. She’s not British. Which is perfect because I’ve had enough of the accent already. She grew up in the States but when her mother met some British guy, they moved here to live with him. I met her at the pub where she works the time I broke up with my ex. My eyes were just bloodshot from tears that night and she talked to me about it. I don’t know, but we just clicked. We’ve been hanging out ever since that night and she’s really an amazing person. It’s gonna be sad to leave her in a couple of days when I have to go back home. But we did promise to stay in touch.
“I’m fine, don’t worry. I just don’t want to eat too much before later. I might throw up or something.” That was somehow true. I don’t want to eat too much because I might get stage fright later and throw up all over the place. I’d die of embarrassment if that happens.
“Alright!” she surrendered, raising her hands in the air for more emphasis. ”But I’ll be having donuts. Come on.” She pushed the door and let herself in. I had to stop and stare at the coffee shop. This place is familiar. I can’t go in here. “Are you coming?” Trisha’s head popped out of the door. “What’s wrong?” I might’ve looked completely terrible. I feel terrible. I feel like every inch of blood has drained out of my face.
“Can we just go to a different place?” my voice shook.
“What’s wrong with this one? This place serves the best coffees!” Trisha wasn’t getting my uneasiness.
“I know it does. I’ve been here before. A lot of times, actually. With… with…” I tried to say it but it won’t come out.
But Trisha got it and just rolled her eyes at me. “Get. Over. It. Come on,” she pulled me in and even if I want to object, I’m no longer in control of my own body. This is not going to be good. I can feel that something’s going to go horribly wrong here. I just do.