The last time you and Tom saw each other, you were sitting in a cafe, holding hands.
You looked into his pale blue eyes, you barely staying composed, and mumbled the words "It's not you, it's me."
Friends and family alike criticized your decision to break off the engagement, but you weren't ready to be in a long-term, committed relationship. Especially after University.
A couple months later, Tom's career in theatre really picked up, then so did his film career. Rumors spread that he was in a relationship with some other actress but mutual friends confirmed they had broken up.
Tonight was the big party that your friend Alex was throwing. The New Year was just 2 hours away, a new year meant new opportunities.
You show up wearing jeans and a tank with an oversized cardigan and boots. Alex's house was filled with friends and colleagues all ranging from producers, actors and artists. "Hey there!" you hear from behind, turning to see Alex with open arms.
"Great party, as usual. It's been so long!" you gasp realizing the last time you saw him was after the breakup. He smiles at you, "How's life? Any new loves?" You nudge him in the side, "You know I'm far too busy to date."
You landed your dream job as an Art Director for the Royal Shakespeare Company. Love was not in the stars right now.
"Well then," Alex said, "I guess I better tell some of the bachelors I invited to go home, then?" You grab a glass of champagne from the waiter walking by. "What bachelors?"
It was then that Alex pointed to a circle of men across the room, laughing about something. One of them looks awfully familiar. "Why don't you go talk to him?" It was when Alex said this, you knew exactly who that was. Tom.
It was like he could sense us talking about him because Tom turned around, looking right us. He whispers to the group of guys he was talking to, excusing himself. He begins walking towards us with a smile on his face, sliding in and out of people in his way.
I stand a little closer to Alex who seems to be distracted by a guy in the corner, not even paying attention to Tom, who is now standing right in front of us.
I look up at his face, chiseled like a roman marble statue. His eyes a darker blue, his hair colored black and tucked behind his ears, probably because of his next film coming out. The Avengers I think. So much for that adorable curly blonde hair he had in University.
"Hello Lauren." he says smiling, eyes fixed on mine. Alex finally notices Tom, "Thomas! Love the party so far?" he places his hand on Tom's arm but Tom is too distracted by you, so he just nods. "Well, I'm going to leave you two alone. To catch up."
Feelin myself blush I try to start the conversation. "It's been awhile. How have you been?" knowing how he's been, the man is on top of the world.
"I'm fantastic. Congratulations on your position at RSC! I know that was always your dream." He said sincerely, the fact he remembered surprised me. "As to you. Your career is taking off, well deserved. Archipelago was brilliant." Tom smiles, "You always believed in me. For that, I owe a lot to you."
My cheeks begin feeling warm, a sign that I was blushing noticeably. Tom and I began talking about the past few years, we broke up 6 years ago and this is the first time we've seen each other.
"You still light up the room Lauren," he compliments me. "Is there a special someone in your life?" I look down to my boots, "Unfortunately not. I just can't seem to stay in a relationship long enough."
The truth is, I haven't been able to fill that void that Tom once occupied in my heart. He was my best friend, my fiancé and I broke it off like some immature loon. "Neither have I, I suppose. My last relationship lasted 4 months, before that, I had no heart to date."
Everyone around us gathered in front of the tv, awaiting the countdown to 2012. Tom places his hand at the small of my back, guiding me to a part in the crowd so we can see the tv.
Tom moves closer to me, out arms touching.
In sync everyone yells out "HAPPY NEW YEAR!" Couples share a kiss and strangers raise their glasses.
I feel Tom's hand grace my chin, lifting my eyes to his. "Happy New Year Lauren." he says, planting his soft lip against mine.
It only lasted 5 seconds but for those 5 seconds, it felt like it was six years ago. The connection was still there. We still had it.
I open my eyes to look at him, both of us smiling.
"Happy New Year Thomas." I say, knowing I was the only person besides his mother who could get away with calling him by his birth name. He laughs, bowing his head placing his free hand in his pocket.
I'm not too certain what this new year brings for me, but I'm hoping that Tom is a big part of it.