She needed me, and wanted me, but my choices… My choices took that away from her, and her away from me.
She lifted her chin, looking at me directly in the eyes as she sighed, the doors slowly closing. “I wish I could forget.” She whispered before they shut.
I thought about that while the elevator rose, back up to level six and my room.
I opened the door and brought my heavy eyes up from the ground to find Octavia sitting on my couch, looking at me annoyed. “You really messed up.” She said.
I held up my hand and shook my head at her. “I already know that.” I muttered. “I don’t need to be reminded.”
“I think you do.” She said back, tilting her head and eyeing me.
“On the plus side, I think the council is going to side with you both.” She told me and I sighed, thankful. “You told me that she was so upset with you because she hadn’t gotten over your deceit.” She said, narrowing her eyes.
“I thought that she was.” I admitted, sitting down on the other side of the couch and leaning my head back. “I never dreamed that her anger stemmed from leaving here.”
“It wasn’t from leaving here.” She sighed. “It was being sent by you.”
I groaned. “I know that now, Octavia.”
“I’m sorry,” She said unapologetically. “I just don’t know how you misjudged this situation so horribly. You are a master in battle, and an extremely efficient leader, but yet…”
“That woman does things to me that no other does.” I sighed.
“So what are you going to do about it?” She asked, and I turned to see her smiling at me.
I narrowed my eyes at her mischievous expression. “What do you mean?”
“Rachel still loves you.”
“No she doesn’t.”
She rolled her eyes. “She does.” She said. “I’ve seen it in her eyes since the second I met her, and I’ve seen it in yours for years.
That girl is hurting, but she is in love with you still. I have no doubt in my mind.”
“She has the boy.”
Octavia nodded. “She does, but they are already fighting and she
has only had one moment with you, or I guess two now, since it took you so long to get here I assume you pursued her after the meeting.”
“Fighting?” I asked.
She nodded. “He requested, not so nicely, to be moved to another room.”
“He’s an idiot.” I snapped. “He has the world and has no idea.”
“I think he does have an idea of what he’s got, but I also think he has an idea that he might not actually have her because you are the one who really has her.” Octavia said, picking at a split end.
“So what are you saying?” I asked, hating how behind I have been feeling since Rachel returned.
Octavia sat up and leaned over to me. “I’m going to make this very simple for you.” She smiled. “Rachel loves you, you love Rachel.”
“But, nothing!” She smiled, putting her hand on my knee.
“Whatever happened between the two of you when you went to see her, it must have meant something to her or she and Logan wouldn’t have fought.” She told me. “You still have an effect on her, I’ve seen it. The first day when she got here she found your note in the kitchen and you should have seen the look on her face. She held onto that piece of paper for dear life, because it was from you. You still have her heart, Calvin.”
I shook my head, unable to believe that after the way she just talked to me, and the things she’s just said, that it would be true. “I missed my chance.” I sighed. “She said she can’t do this again, and I don’t want to make things worse for her. She said she can’t forget the things I did to her.”
“So make her.”
“What?” I demanded.
“Make her forget.” She said simply. “Make her remember the good things, and forget the bad. Show her you are here for her. Fight for her, dammit. That’s all any girl wants.”
“Make her forget?” I asked.
Octavia nodded her head, leaning back on the couch, obviously proud of herself. I could see in her eyes she was just waiting for the next time she can tell me she told me so. For once, though, this is something I desperately want her to be right about. She can rub it in my face all she wants if it means Rachel is mine again.
Is that possible? Rachel being mine?
I nodded my head to myself, standing. “I’ll make her forget.”
|||||||•••• •|||•••||•• •|||••||••||• •|||•••||••|`••|||••||||•
RACHEL P.o.v ✅
The elevator doors shut, leaving him on the other side.
As I turned around the guards all moved back into their places around me. I felt suffocated by them, but I let them lead me to the blue room. Once I was alone inside I sat down at the dining table and let myself really cry like I have held back for so long. Big, ugly, stupid crying for no reason, and for every reason all at once.
I’ve spent so long pretending to be strong, pretending to be ok, pretending to have forgotten…but I just haven’t. I desperately wish I could have forgotten over the time about all the feelings this place gives me. I remember when I was first brought here, how much I hated it, but the more I got to know Calvin, the more this place became so much more to me than just a prison.
It was home because it was where he was.
How can he still have such a power over me? My mind won’t work when he is around, my feelings refuse to be hidden when he is near me, and my mouth just wants to scream I love you, even though I know that I never can say that again. Too much has happened.
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I stood up from the table and paced the room, needing to get some of this nervous energy out of me. I can’t believe that this whole time that Calvin thought I was still upset about the vampire takeover lie. I was pissed, and I felt incredibly stupid for missing all of the signs, but ultimately, it was that lie that brought us together, no matter the circumstances, I fell in love with him. What had hurt was being away from him, not the lies.
I’d been so deep in thought that I hadn’t even noticed when the door opened and Octavia walked in with Cromley. “Majesty?” She said, making me jump nearly out of my skin.
I spun around and I couldn’t help but notice the looks on their faces as they took in my appearance. Makeup smeared all around, and snot pouring from my bright red nose. “Sorry.” I sniffled. “I was just…”
“Having a breakdown?” Octavia asked and I nodded. “That is known to happen around here from time to time.”
I almost smiled as I nodded, wiping my face some more. “You can say that again.” I muttered.
Cromley smiled at me warmly. “Anything I can do, please let me know.” He said with a bow. My stomach grumbled and I looked up at them helplessly, then over to the kitchen with a frown. “How about I get you some food?” He asked politely and I nodded my head.
“Thank you, Cromley.” I sighed. Since Logan stormed off, I haven’t eaten. He was the one who always cooked for us at home.
Cromley left the room and Octavia walked over to the vanity, pulling out the plush seat. “Come on,” She said. “Let’s get you cleaned up. The council has reached a decision.”
“So fast?” I asked as I walked over and she nodded her head.
“Although I know how hard that was for the both of you, his lies, and your emotional reaction really sold it.” She said. “You shouldn’t worry about that anymore.”
I leaned back in the chair, pulling my legs up beside me as she pulled my hair from the ribbon and fanned it out behind me, brushing through it with her fingers. “Can I ask you something?”
I spoke up after a couple of minutes.
“Anything.” She smiled at me in the mirror.
“You said you and Calvin are close,” I said. “How has he…I don’t know, I guess I’m wondering what the last five years have been like for him.” I told her and then ducked my head slightly so that she wouldn’t see the insecurity written all over my face.
“Honestly?” She asked and I peeked up to catch her smiling.
“He’s been a big baby.” She laughed and I couldn’t help but snort out a little one too. “I’m serious.” She smiled. “I used to have this idea about this place and the king and the prince, and I was so excited to finally come here, but then I got here and found that nothing was like I had imagined it to be. Especially him. I know you probably heard that before you, Calvin used to be looked at as very cold and heavy handed.” She told me and I nodded in agreement. He had told me that himself, as did a handful of others. “I’d watch him on the TV and he’d always be brooding or making sarcastic comments that you could tell pushed the King’s buttons.” She laughed to herself at some memory, then looked back down at me as she pulled my hair up into a high ponytail. “Then there was the competition, and it was almost instantaneous the change you made in him.
Commentators hated it because he seemed to come alive when you were around and he wasn’t the deep and dark prince they’d always assumed him to be. You should have heard the way the news would talk about him.” She sighed.
“I heard the way they talked about me, so I believe you.” I agreed.
“That’s right.” She winked. “I forgot you were such a rule breaker.”
“He told you that?” I asked and she just laughed.
“Pigheaded is how he put it, but yes.” She smiled.
I shook my head at her in the mirror, having a hard time not getting pulled into her contagious smile.
“You sound just like a friend of mine.” I told her, sadness getting to me a little that he wasn’t here.
“Pedro?” She asked and I glanced up at her, surprised she knew who I was referring to. “I’ll let you in on a little known secret.” She giggled. “Pedro is my uncle by blood.” She told me and I gasped.
“He never told me he had family here.” I said surprised.
She tilted her head back and forth. “Well, he technically didn’t at the time.” She explained.
“He’s my mother’s brother, and for the longest time my family refused to talk about him until the day when my mother got really sick. She had a rare bone disease and she had refused Pedro’s help so many times, but as she was on her death bed she begged me to find Pedro and bring him to her.” She told me.
“I didn’t understand why, but she finally came clean with me and told me all about his true identity.
For the longest I thought the reason he was shunned from the family was because he was gay.” She shook her head at herself.
“I was twenty two then, and although I couldn’t get to Pedro in time to save my mom, I did decide that I wanted this life.” She said. “The doctors told me it was very possible that I might develop the same condition that killed my mom, and I just couldn’t do that.”
“I’m so sorry about your mother.” I told her, turning in the chair to face her. “I lost my mother too.”
She smiled down thankfully to me and put her hand on my shoulder. “I know, and I am sorry for you as well.” She whispered. “So, I knew I didn’t want to go out the way she did, so I asked Pedro to change me.” She explained, reaching around me to get some wipes to clean my face with. “He promised he would, but I’d have to be sure first, and he made me wait a year before coming here, but I did get to watch the televised occasions, including the competition from home.” When she finished wiping away the old ruined makeup, she began applying the new.
“That was how I, like so many others, was able to see the change in Calvin you made. He smiled, he laughed, he was kind to people, he cared about others, and he started being the man you needed. I’ve been a hopeless romantic all my life, so there was no way I was going to root for anyone other than you to win. I was so happy when I found out you two were married and I was scheduled to come here soon after.” She said. “But as luck would have it, all hell broke loose, as it usually does around here, and I ended up arriving here days after your departure.”
“I see.” I nodded then she eyed me to be still so that she could do my eyeliner.
“I expected to meet Calvin the strong warrior and king who had pulled everyone together around his rule and his queen, but instead I met a broken man.”
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I looked up into her big eyes and there was sadness there. It was clear she really does care for him. “It broke my heart seeing this guy who I had idolized from afar, and thought so much of, turn into such a…for lack of a better word, a big fat baby.” She smiled. “He stayed locked in his room for weeks, he starved himself, he was…just lost. He hated himself for what he had done to you, and he missed you, Rachel. You have no idea how much.”
“I’m sure I do.” I pointed out and she smiled, rolling her eyes.
ANYTHING FOR RACHEL