no i dont have a new project stop judging me [eric pov]
Eric Luna had hated Harley Briga for two years. Since he was sixteen and found out she'd been cheating on him. A little bit of that had faded, but he still couldn't stand her. Couldn't stand her charm, or the way the world seemed to fall at her feet. Or all of the little secrets she kept. The ones no one seemed to notice. But he did. He noticed them. Because he noticed everything about her, even though he hated her.
He definitely hated her.
Right now though, he was absolutely pissed at the fact that she couldn't even remember their anniversary. That it didn't seem to matter one bit to her. Sure, they weren't together. But that didn't mean he didn't remember it.
"I can't believe they got the map. I was so close. Just a minute quicker and I would have had it--"
They were walking back through town, the museum behind them. He wasn't sure how he always managed to get pulled into these schemes. He didn't like her. He absolutely loathed her, and wasn't sure why she hadn't gotten that.
She was wearing those stupid sunglasses, the yellow ones shaped like hearts that Hunter had gotten for her when they were all kids. And a stupid touristy Hawaiian shirt. Even though they'd been stealing from a museum. Somehow, she looked gorgeous. She always did, and that irritated him to no end. Fiery red hair perfectly straight, never out of place. Long legs that never burned but did manage to tan just a bit--
"Can you just--stop. Stop, okay?"
She looked at him then, those eyes that Caribbean blue. He couldn't do this. The words couldn't sit on the tip of his tongue forever, while she pretended the earth was spinning just right on it's axis.
"I'm complaining too much, right? Sorry. I just can't figure out how they were one step ahead of me--"
"No, Harley. Just stop talking. Stop doing this." Eric came to a stop there in the middle of the street, the dead storefronts around them bearing witness to him finally hitting the end of his rope. Logan preached patience. He had none left. "Stop pretending."
There was that look. The one that made it seem like she knew exactly what he was going to say. He hated how she always seemed to know better than anyone. That she, ironically, was always one step ahead.
"On today of all days I can't just sit here, while you go around like nothing even--"
"I didn't cheat on you."
The ground fell out from under his feet.
She sounded so sincere. So patient, like she had been waiting for him to bring it up. But he had seen it, seen her that night with Kevin Greene and watched as she kissed him, listened to the whispers that followed about how it hadn't just started then.
"I didn't want anything to do with Greene that night, but he was desperate to convince you that I did. And it worked."
Kevin Greene had hated his guts since elementary school. And in much the opposite fashion, had adored Harley with every fiber of his being. Eric could understand why, of course. He just wasn't happy with it.
"I knew you would come to me. So I waited. And you left." She wasn't mad. He could tell, had always been able to tell exactly what she was feeling. They had grown up together. For so long, they had been more than friends, and then more than lovers. Like something had bound their hearts.
"Why didn't you say anything?"
Harley may not have been mad, but he sure felt like he was. Always at odds that way, her always flowing, him always quick to spark. He wasn't mad at her. Maybe he was. He didn't know anymore, and he could feel the prickle beneath his finger tips. Turning away, he pulled a hand through his hair, gritting his teeth. No fangs. Not now.
"It wasn't the right time."
She was right. She shouldn't have been, but she was. He spun back, eyes wide, and she just shrugged.
"I know you. I knew you then and I do now. And now is a good time. Something was...wrong, then. You would have come to me if everything had been fine. But it wasn't and you didn't. But that's not..." She held out her hands to him, almost pleadingly. Harley Briga didn't plead. He felt something in his heart break. "This is now. You're here now, and I'm telling you now. Because you deserve to know."
The words that had been clawing their way up his throat since the beginning stalled, died right there and blocked his voice. He couldn't say anything. He didn't have to. His hands met hers, pulling her towards him just enough before he let go and moved to her face.
And then he kissed her like his life depended on it. All of the anger, all of the heartbreak and sorrow and the guilt. He poured it into the kiss, left nothing behind. He felt it from her, too.
The godforsaken treasure hunt and mystery meant nothing. The past meant nothing. All that mattered was that finally, he had her back. And he didn't hate her anymore.