Chapter 28

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She arrived home nearly 40 minutes later. Her phone had buzzed several times more during the drive but she never took it out of her purse. When she got into her apartment she fed the cats then went straight to her bedroom. She fell face down on the bed and cried.

How could she have been so stupid? Why on earth did she open herself up to this again? There was a battle going on in her head. The pain and anger and self hatred at letting this happen again versus the memories that flooded back to all the good times they had shared. She tried hard to block those memories. They were too painful now. She was mentally exhausted and eventually fell asleep.

She woke up in the middle of the night and for a moment she had forgotten why she'd fallen asleep in her scrubs. Then it hit her all over again. She got up and changed her clothes, then went to the bathroom to brush her teeth. On her way back to the bedroom she grabbed her phone from her purse.

She laid down on the bed and turned the phone on. She had 24 missed calls and 5 unread texts. She read Emma's text.

I'm so sorry. There was no easy way to tell you that and I wasn't sure you'd believe me without seeing proof. But like I said before, it might not be what it seems. You should at least give him a chance to explain. Call me if you need me. If I don't hear from you I'll call you tomorrow. Love you!

She then moved onto Brian's messages. She wasn't sure she was even ready to read them. To see what kind of bullshit he would spout. But curiosity got the better of her and she clicked on his name.

First message.

Please answer the phone. I need to talk to you.

Second message.

Mel answer the phone. I know you've seen by now. Please let me explain.

Next message.

I promise you it's not what you think. I would NEVER do that to you. I love you too much to hurt you like that. You know I'm not like that.

That message brought back the tears. She did believe that he loved her, and she loved him. But this was unforgivable. She read the last message.

I love you Melanie. Please call me. Let me explain. You at least owe me that.

Her sadness turned to anger with that last line. She didn't OWE him anything. She clicked the phone off and put it in the night stand. She laid there for a while staring at the ceiling. She was so mad at herself for allowing this to happen again. Allowing herself to open up and let someone in. Tears flowed from her eyes, rolling down the sides of her face and into her hair. She didn't want to cry anymore, but she couldn't help it. She closed her eyes hoping that would stem the flow and she was soon back asleep.

When the alarm went off she crawled out of bed sleepily and got ready for work. She checked her phone before heading out the door. No more calls or texts. She was relieved. But she knew he wouldn't relent so she left her phone in her locker all day. She couldn't be bothered with it while she was tending to patients.

It was a busy day in the ER so time seemed to fly by. When she checked her phone at the end of her shift she saw that she had a missed call from Emma, several from Brian and a few texts from him as well. She didn't read any of his texts. She just wanted to get home. She had the next few days off since she was supposed to have been in Chicago.

When she got home she changed her clothes and ate, before calling Emma. They talked for a while, Emma doing her best to make Melanie feel better over the phone. Emma told her she had taken the next day off work and that she was taking Melanie out for the day. They hung up with Emma saying she would be over at 11:00 to get her.

She sat there with her phone in her hand. She still hadn't read Brian's texts. She sighed and decided to get it over with. The first message.

I'm sorry

Second message.

I love you. Please call me.

Last message.

Please let me explain it to you. It was just a kiss. Nothing more. And it meant nothing. I swear. I love you so much. I could never do that to you. Please call me back.

She didn't call him back of course. She turned out the light and went to bed. She was hoping that a girls day out with Emma would keep her mind occupied.

Emma showed up right at 11:00 and they were on their way. They had brunch in Brooklyn before heading to Manhattan. They took the train in and got off near Central Park. They walked, they talked, they shopped, they laughed. It was a nice day and by the end of it, when Emma was dropping her off, Melanie was thankful to have such a good friend.

When she got into her apartment she was greeted right away by Max and Lily. They rubbed against her, both vying for her attention. After some ear and back scratches she fed them before going to change her clothes.

She came back out and laid down on the couch with a blanket and the remote. She flipped through the channels before settling on an older movie. She was asleep before the movie was over.

She woke to the sound of knocking on her door. She had no idea what time it was but she knew it was late. She was hesitant to answer it. She couldn't imagine who it could be at this hour. She got up, wrapped the blanket around her and went to the door. She opened it to find Brian standing there.

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