Friday, April 26, 2013
"Just don't try to fix it," Jules said with a quick smile. Willow wasn't even sure she was listening. She kept staring at Dorian who looked to be on edge. "It'll work its self out." His words echoed through her as he kissed her on the cheek. He'd be late for class. She responded with a kiss on his lips as if that were a proper goodbye and watched him leave the coffee shop. Naturally, she turned her attention back to Dorian who was clearing tables after the morning rush.
"What are you and Eli up to, lately?" She decided to go the cheerful route, hoping she might help that long face of his, who looked preoccupied even with a bunch of dishes.
"Nothing, really." He shrugged as he took them to the dishwasher in the kitchen where he rinsed and put them where they belonged.
"You're still together, right?" Willow stared at him as if he needed to tell her what was wrong.
"Right." He nodded.
"You seem. I dunno. Not yourself." Willow observed. He usually smiled more. "Everything, all right?"
He nodded, but he pressed his lips tight.
"I-I think Ruben ..is..is still around." Dorian thin shoulders shrugged. He looked a bit more ill, even if he were his usual pale self.
"Ruben? What's he doing here?" She winced hard.
"Dunno." Dorian pushed his auburn hair back. "Not anymore, anyway."
Willow sighed as she wiped down the counter and checked to see how low they were on muffins.
She remembered how Ruben was at the wedding. He really thought he was special, the way he wanted everyone to gather around and treat him like a celebrity.
"What happened?" Willow went to get him a cup a tea. There was time to talk. The place was empty.
"I don't even want to talk about it." He tried to laugh it off, as he played with the tea bag in the hot water. He squeezed in a slice of lemon. "Maybe..maybe I was expecting Eli to rescue me. Or something." He did look quite sad. "Ruben showed up at Topher's. It was...so..awkward..."
"Eli's your boyfriend," Willow said, thinking maybe Eli was jealous.
"Sometimes, I don't know if..if..its really a relationship..we have. I mean, I do love him. Emotionally. Its just..there is the physical part..that's not..exactly..there."
"Ruben, all you get, is physical." Dorian sighed. "But I don't want to be with Ruben. I really don't. But I'm not sure I belong with Eli, either."
"I see." Willow wished she knew what to say as Dorian stared at his tea.
"I guess. I just need to get used to being alone." He sniffed. She knew he was crying.
"Want to go to the animal shelter, after work?" She asked. The dogs always cheered her up. "I've got all these old towels and some dog food I've been keeping. Thinking we'll get a dog, but I haven't quite talked Jules into it, yet. They're always in need of food there."
"Sure. I don't even think I know where the animal shelter is." Dorian looked up at her. Finally, he cradled his tea and took a sip.