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07 August 2013 @ 10:43 am
Lonely  
TITLE/PROMPT: Lonely/Writer's Choice: Commitment
AUTHOR: mkrobinson
RATING: PG-13 I guess, it could probably pass for PG
WORDS: 1702
TABLE: http://babysitters100.livejournal.com/53582.html#cutid1 [this is in need of an update, but LJ makes me cry whenever I dare try to post or edit there].
SUMMARY: “I knew you would,” she said, and she dared to kiss him on the cheek. It was a friendly kiss, nothing more. A kiss on the cheek for a friend. She made a mental note to ignore the sparks that she’d felt, to ignore that Richard had blushed, to ignore the fact that she wanted him.
WARNINGS: It's an affair fic.
NOTES: Look, it's BSC fic from me, once more. This is a response to a prompt on modern_living and also fills the prompt "bittersweet" on the Summer Challenge.
“Sharon,” she heard an insistent voice calling, and she ducked her head, not wanting to be seen. Somehow, Sharon had naively assumed that Stoneybrook would be a break from Jack, from the kids, especially with her parents out of town, but that of course had been proven wrong. “Sharon, is that you?”

She removed her sunglasses from her face momentarily, eyes locking on a familiar face.

Shit, she thought to herself. Somehow the fact that Richard Spier still lived in Stoneybrook hadn’t managed to register with her when she’d decided to make the trip east.

Maybe Jack was right. Maybe she was stupid.

“Richie?” She kept her tone brisk, yet pleasant. She didn’t want him to worry about her, after all. Even if someone worrying about her would have been a nice change. “It’s been awhile.”

It had been awhile. It had been years since Sharon had been back to Stoneybrook, years since she’d seen Richard.

“Have you moved back?”

She winced at his hopeful tone, and shook her head. “I just came for a visit,” she said, softly. “I needed some time to think.”

“Oh,” he replied, looking abashed. “I shouldn’t have bothered you, then.”

Sharon felt incredibly guilty. “You’re not bothering me,” she said, honestly. “I’d rather talk to you than listen to my thoughts right now. How are you doing?”

She felt so stupid and immature for being upset and running across the country due to Jack when she was talking to Richard, her widower ex-boyfriend.

Richard who didn’t have a choice about how his marriage had ended.

Richard who had always had real problems, and who had always convinced her that hers were equally as important.

Richard who was talking and was oblivious to the fact that Sharon’s attention had wandered.

She sighed, once again.

“Are you all right?” Richard asked. “You don’t look very well.”

She shrugged. “I’m just having a rough time, lately,” she told him. “That’s all. Don’t worry about me.”

“We could talk about it, if you’d like,” he offered, and, after a half second of hesitation, she nodded.

“If you have time,” she said softly. “That would be nice.”

“I have time,” he said. “Don’t I always have time for you?”


***


"Do you think I'm stupid?" Sharon uncapped her lipstick as she asked, and she carefully applied it. She couldn't bear to look at Richie when he answered.

He shook his head. "You're not stupid," he told her. "Why on earth would you think that?"

She shrugged. "They think I don't know," she muttered. "They think that I'm too scatterbrained to put two and two together." She sighed. "I just...wanted your opinion, that's all."

"Who's they?"

She pursed her lips. "Oh, Richie, really?" She sighed. "Jack and her."

Rita and Charles Porter were in Bermuda, a fact that Sharon had forgotten about but was rather glad to remember, when she showed up at their house, in idyllic Stoneybrook, Connecticut. Coming there -- coming home -- had been yet another rash decision in the life of Sharon Schafer, and she was relieved that she wasn’t forced to deal with her disapproving mother and father.

They would have thought she was running away. That she was being a child.

Sharon supposed that they were partially right.

She was running away.

On her cell phone, there were three texts from Jack, which she'd deleted without reading. Perhaps it was awfully cruel of her -- Sharon prided herself on not being a cruel person, it simply wasn't in her nature -- but then again, why shouldn't she be?

Was she supposed to be nice to her husband who was having an obvious affair? Was she supposed to just toe the line, and play the role of the happy -- yet oblivious -- wife? Her mother probably would have.

No, her mother definitely would have.

There was something vaguely off about the whole country club mentality, wasn't there?

Not that she really knew. She hadn't been much for the club once she'd hit middle school and transfered from Stoneybrook Day to SMS.

Maybe that had been her detriment.

Before, she wouldn't have thought that, before she would have just rolled with the punches, because she was Sharon and that was what she did.

Maybe she'd been too naive. Too trusting.

Of course, husbands were supposed to be trustworthy.

Weren’t they? She sure as hell didn’t know.

“You think Jack’s cheating on you?” Richard asked her, and she nodded. 

“No, I know Jack’s cheating on me,” she said. “Like it’s a fact.”

He cleared his throat. “I think you should leave him,” he said, and she shook her head.

“I can’t,” she muttered. “Where would I go, what would I do? I don’t have a degree or anything. I’m a stay at home mom.”

He sighed. “I thought you went to UCLA. The reunion...”

“I lied to them, Richie,” she said. “I didn’t get a degree in social work, I didn’t even come close to graduating. I flunked out, okay?”

She pulled two wine glasses from her mother’s cabinets and placed them on the counter, allowing the cabinet door to slam shut.

“I don’t like to tell anyone because they’ll think I’m stupid,” she said, and she looked down at the floor. “Chardonnay?”

He nodded. “You’re not stupid, Shar,” he said, as he crossed the room to her. “You never have been.”

“Thanks,” she replied, because it was the nice thing to do, not because she actually believed him. She took a sip of wine. “How have you been?”

She silently begged him to take the subject change.

“Oh, I’ve been all right, I suppose,” he said, and he shrugged his shoulders. “Mary Anne is flourishing, and I’ve made partner.”

“I knew you would,” she said, and she dared to kiss him on the cheek. It was a friendly kiss, nothing more. A kiss on the cheek for a friend. She made a mental note to ignore the sparks that she’d felt, to ignore that Richard had blushed, to ignore the fact that she wanted him.

“How old is Mary Anne?”

She took another sip of wine.

“Oh, she’s ten,” he replied, and he ran his hands through his hair. “She’ll start middle school in the fall.”

“Yeah?” Sharon asked, her tone light. “You must be happy.”

“I am,” he agreed. “But I wish Alma were here.”

“I know,” she said softly. “Do you ever get lonely?”

Richard nodded. “Sometimes,” he said. “I really miss her.”

“I know.”


***

At some point, Richard had slipped his arm around her shoulders, and then her waist, but Sharon found she didn’t much mind. There was something comforting, for lack of a better phrase, about being around her ex-boyfriend. She felt cared for. Like she mattered.

“I think this is the first time I’ve been here,” Richard commented, as she -- three glasses of wine warming her -- curled up beside him, on her parents’ couch.

“You’ve been here before,” she protested, though she wasn’t entirely certain. “Haven’t you?”

“Your parents hated me,” he pointed out. “Do you really think they’d have let me into their house, let me sit on their couch, now, let alone back when we were together?”

“Probably not,” she replied, after a moment of thought. “They’d probably still disapprove.”

“Will they be home soon?”

She shook her head. “No, they’re in Bermuda.”

“Do they even know you’re here?”

Sharon shook her head again. “I couldn’t tell them,” she said, sighing. “They’d think I was being irresponsible.”

“I don’t think that,” he said. “Sharon, there are worse things you could have done than coming home,” he assured her. “I promise you that.”

“You’re sweet,” she murmured. “Thanks, Richie.”

“Don’t thank me,” he protested. “I-”

“You’re not the only one who gets lonely,” she murmured, as she kissed him on the lips.

Another thing her parents would have disapproved of.

“Are you lonely?” Richard asked, once they pulled apart.

“Only every day.”



***



“It would be easier -- “ Sharon stared to say, after her fifth glass of wine, but she stopped herself. She knew that Richard had better things to care about then her problems, better things to do than be sat on her parents’ couch, arms wrapped around her.

He was lonely and she was lonely, this was true, but how could she even dream of comparing their two situations? 

“What would be easier?” Richard asked, and she shook her head.

“Nothing,” she replied, as she stared at her hands, wishing she felt more guilty about the kiss she’d shared with another man while wearing her wedding ring. “Just ignore me.”

“I’m sorry I kissed you,” he offered. “I shouldn’t have. It was impulsive of me. It was wrong, no matter how much I wanted it, no matter -- “

Sharon felt herself kissing him again, which effectively cut off his rant.

It was a soft kiss, but she liked it.

“Am I pretty?” The question had just slipped out, but she did want to know the answer.

“Prettiest girl in all of Stoneybrook High,” he replied. She managed a smile. “Even after all these years.”

“Oh, Richie,” she murmured. “How did things get so messed up?”

“I don’t know,” he mused. “I think that life has a way of working itself out, though.”

“Do you?”

He nodded. “Yes,” he said, simply. “I do.”

“Maybe you’re right,” she agreed. “I hope so, at least.”

“You’ll be okay,” he assured her. “I promise.”

“Thanks,” she said. “You’ll be okay too.”

 
 
 
Roonil Wazlib: bscbaseballchica03 on October 20th, 2013 03:13 am (UTC)
Gah, poor Sharon. This fic makes my heart hurt for both of them.
mkrobinson on January 10th, 2016 06:49 am (UTC)
OMG I just saw this...I feel horrible! Thank you for your kind words.
mkrobinson on January 10th, 2016 06:49 am (UTC)
OMG I just saw this...I feel horrible! Thank you for your kind words.