The week passed more quickly than Valerie would have liked. Before she knew it she was on her way to town to meet up with Jenny and Ethan. Valerie felt tense and anxious going into the meeting. She wanted to expose Ethan today but it would be hard.
The café Jenny had suggested was nearly on campus and frequented by a lot of students. As Valerie entered she already spotted Jenny waving excitedly from one of the tables.
I think I’m gonna be sick, Valerie thought as she made her way over to her trying to ignore Ethan’s smug grin.
“Val! So happy you could make it”, Jenny called out as she reached the table. Ethan only nodded. “What do you want to drink? Coffee? Maybe prosecco?” Jenny seemed even more bubbly than usual.
“Prosecco?”, Valerie asked confused. Something is going on here. This can’t be good. For a moment she forgot about her plan.
“Yeah, we actually have something to celebrate! I was going to wait until later to tell you, but-”
“Jenny? Oh my god, hey!”, a girl from another table had come up to them and started a conversation with Jenny.
Valerie was glad for the distraction. An announcement?
“What the hell is this about?”, she hissed towards Ethan. He shrugged.
Valerie huffed and turned away. A million theories entered her mind and none of them she particularly fancied.
“Excuse me for a moment”, she mumbled and quickly made her way towards the back of the restaurant before Jenny could protest.
She took deep breaths as she went up the stairs to the bathrooms trying to calm herself down. She wanted to be mad at Ethan – not even knowing what for but instead all she felt was anger at herself and shame. Whatever this mysterious announcement was, she had already made sure that she wouldn’t be able to be happy for Jenny or support her. And she felt like a piece of shit for doing that to a friend – and herself. But suddenly she felt something else – a strong sense of déjà-vû she had only experienced once before. Oh god…
Just as in her dream, she slowly walked towards the door with the women’s sign on it. She was eager to discover the true meaning of her vision – and afraid at the same time because she knew it was going to be terrible news. The noise she heard as she entered was heart breaking; bawling sobs were coming from one of the stalls. Carefully Valerie walked up to the door and softly knocked. The crying stopped.
“Hey. Are you okay?”
She heard a click before the door swung open and revealed a teary Eva.
Valerie stared at her dumbfounded. What’s going on?
“Eva? What happened?”, she was inclined to give the other girl a hug but held her distance. She wasn’t sure how Eva would feel about it. Who ever thought I’d consider her a better friend than Jenny? Then again, Eva didn’t make her feel terribly ashamed every time they met.
“What happened…”, Eva’s voice had a bitter edge to it. “Didn’t they tell you already? Bet that bitch couldn’t wait to spill the beans.”
Valerie had never heard Eva speak of Jenny like that.
“Hey, that’s my friend you’re talking about!”, she angrily called out but Eva wasn’t phased.
“Is she now? Whatever, that’s your business. But he promised me. The bastard promised me and look at them now!”, Eva’s voice was growing louder as she let out her anger.
“Promised you what? What’s going on here?”, Valerie asked although she had a daunting feeling that she didn’t want to know.
“Hey promised he’d break up with her! As soon as he got into college and now… I thought what we had was special. Not them. Us.”
Wow, I had no idea she was this in love with him. It shifted Valerie’s view of Eva. Maybe she wasn’t as tough as she always pretended to be. Whatever this is about, I’m gonna kick Ethan’s ass for it.
“Eva, tell me what happened.”
“Didn’t you see it? She practically shoved it in everyone’s face before you got here.”
Eva sobbed and turned away.
“See what?”, Valerie was growing increasingly terrified of the answer.
“The god damn ring”, Eva spit out, “They’re god damn engaged.”
Next: Chapter 23