'i love you'
'i love you'
it sounded so pure, so magical, so right. we were lying on the couch with the tv on low; michael was playing and the sun was setting....everything was so right...
'wake up, danielle.'
'i'm up, i'm up'. i groaned as i shifted under the covers, waking up from my lovely dream. why could i only dream about those three words? i turned over to face bruno in bed; his head was resting on the baseboard of the bed and he was staring at me; i made an angry face at him and ducked under the blankets. i hated when he woke me up from those dreams...my reality with him wasn't quite as satisfying... 'hey, what's your problem?' he flipped the covers so that my face was exposed.
'i was having a really good dream.'
' about what, might i ask?' to tell him would be pointless. i kept my true fantasy to myself.
'i had a dream...that i...was... yo mama!'
'dumb-ass' i gasped as though i was shocked by his use of such words. he rolled his eyes and got out of bed when he heard michael call him for something. i took this time to let the dream really soak in. it wasn't much to ask; just three words to express how he's always saying he felt about me anyway. ever since the running away incident, bruno and i have been inseperable, but that doesn't make him any more open about his feelings for me than he was before. all he would do nowadays is look at me and say, 'you just have no idea...'. i wish i did have an idea...
he came back into the room with a serious look on his face.'danny, stop it; what's the real problem?' it didn't help that after i thought he was cheating on me, i had an affair with an owner of a local museum; i never told him, beacause i thought that it would be better for us, but for me, things are more...complicated...
'bruno, i don't have a problem.' i can still fell the weight of the affair on my body; my heart and soul belonged to bruno, no matter where i was; but for that one night of emptiness and hopelessness i surrendered myself to another man...
'you have something on your mind; i know you do,' he said softly. he leaned into me close and stroked my cheek with the pad of his thumb. his warm touch, his gentle, soothing voice, his lovely soul, i could never escape in my mind the tragicly beautiful person that was my Bruno. 'you know i care for you.' every time he says that i always hope that the last few words would turn out to be something else. i hold my breath and wait, only to be dissapointed yet again.
i smiled up at him. ' i care about you too,' i said, and kissed him softly on the lips. he was usually satisfied by this small token of affection, but not today.
'babe, i don't like to see you like this, when you talk to me, you don't look me in the eyes, you sound like everything you tell me is some secret i'm not supposed to know, i'm just worried...' he tilted my head up with his finger, forcing me to look into those big brown eyes of his. i couldv'e cried. why was it so hard to tell him that i loved him? no. those words were a way of submission, and right now, we both had each other's hands tied. i guess i would just hope that he would let me sleep in next time...
' baby, i'm fine, i'm just feeling a bit...distracted; i'll be okay' i got out of bed and combed my thick brown hair when my phone started to vibrate on the table next to the bed. i picked it up.
'hello? is this danielle?' the voice sounded raspy like it was crying for hours, but familiar.
'this is william...'what was wrong with him? why did he have to call me for it? i held the phone away from me for a moment and took a deep breath. the sooner i dealt with this, the sooner i could straighten things out with bruno...
'yes, william, is there a problem?'
'actually, there is. danielle, when you left, i realized that something...someone was missing in my life; you filled that gap like no one else could. i need you here with me danielle... i love you.'
No! this was all wrong! bruno was supposed to tell me that! you were supposed to be a one night stand... you were supposed to forget about me the way one might forget the conversation they had on a subway train with a stranger...
' i'm sorry...what?'
'danielle, you knew we needed each other from the moment we saw each other, i know you're a bit young to understand how i feel, but believe me when i saw that this love that i have for you runs too deep to ignore...' oh no. how could i tell him that he was all wrong? that what we had was based on a huge misunderstanding between two true lovers? i stayed on the phone and tried my best to explain...
'look, william, you were very kind to me; for that i am very grateful, but i can't be with you-'
'what the asshole decides to be a man?he finally realized what you were worth, the nerve of him-' i hung up the phone. no way would anyone, anyone talk about bruno that way. bruno came up from behind me and wrapped his arms around me.
'who was that?' he murmured into my ear. i was still in such shock, i answered to no one in particular, it seemed.
'who's no one?' someone who can go and live a miserable life in hell.
'hmh... well this friend better not be after my woman,' he said,he smiled and kissed me on the cheek before leaving me alone to finish getting dressed. i hurriedly got myself together. i had to get out and go somewhere.
' let's have michael stay with phil and we go somewhere,' i said when i was done. bruno walked slowly over to me until there was no space left between us and wrapped his arms around me.
'mm-hm' he smiled and nodded his head. phil was there within twenty minutes and bruno and ileft to spend yet another one-on-one day together...
it was almost dusk when we decided to go to a quiet coffee shop to rest and talk. the whole day was nothing but running around from place to place whenever someone recognized him. we agreed on no more daytime dates. we were just sitting down when someone approached us...
'excuse me, but, is your name bruno mars, or something like that?' we glanced at each other and braced ourselves for another run.
'yeah.' he said and looked at me. the next thing i heard was a huge thud as bruno was punched by the stranger in the face. i rushed to his side as he fell to the floor.
'stay away from her!' the strange man yelled. william. before things could get out of hand, i pulled bruno away from the scene and onto the street. bruno was fuming and ready for round two, but before he could do anything, round two came out of the building and right into bruno's face.
'so, mr. bigshot, think you cancome around and do whatever you want with women just 'cause you're famous? well, to me you're just another punk-ass wanna-be with no respectfor good women. you really just-' i saw william pull back for another swing and decided that enough was enough.now it was my turn to get violent.i smacked william across the face and locked eyes with the pitiful excuse for a man.
'don't you ever, ever lay a single finger on bruno! or so help me i'll-' i wouldn't saw another word. he wasn't worth the effort. but bruno had something to say
'danielle, do you know this man?' i gave bruno a pleading look, hoping he would let me off of the hook until we got back to the hotel. he sighed and oput his arm around me. i whipped my head around so i could look william in the eye; he would stay away from me if he knew what was good for him. then bruno and i walked together silently down the street...
'who was that man, danielle? bruno demanded as we walked throught the door. i gave up, there was no more time for me to stall, the story would be told...
'when i ran away...i ran into him...and i-...we..' i couldn't go on. i couldn't stand the thought of losing bruno again, but here i was...
'i slept with him' i finished with a sigh. bruno's eyes widened...he looked so...shocked.
'wait-while we were in L.A.?' he asked. it felt like he was trying to make me suffer...and it was working; tears began to fall down my cheeks and hit the floor silently.
'yes, bruno, while we were in L.A.' i said, my voice breaking. he looked so horrified...so dissapointed...so hurt...
'so i was out ther killing myself trying to find you, and you're in sleeping with another man!?!?!
'i thought you were cheating on me!' i exclaimed.
'it doesn't matter.... danielle, you have no idea-'
'damnit bruno! i'm tired of not 'having any idea! i know i don't! you remind me every day about what you refuse to tell me! what the hell do you expect when you won't tell me anything? as far as i'm concerned...you're nothing more than a stranger to me...you just won't talk to me...' i turned away and let the tears stream down my face. he walked over to me and stood only a breath away from me.
'just beacuse i don't say ' i love you', doesn't mean that's not how i feel. i have a past too.' with that, he stormed out of the hotel room, leaving me to wonder if he'll ever come back...
' danny, is there anything i can do for you?'
'i don't think so...'
phil was so sweet... he listened for about an hour as i gave him a play-by play of what had happened between me and bruno just a couple days ago. before i even thought of phil, i was crying for hours at night...michael woould never see me cry...even when he begged for bruno...
'mommy...call him....' he would whine for hours about calling bruno. i just couldn't baby...i just....can't.' i would say under an overstuffed pillow. then he would wiggle his little fingers under the pillow and propped it up, look at me and say:
'mommy, you're acting really stupid.'
'i know baby...' then i would smile and tickle him until he turned red. he wasn't going to feel my pain. my angel doesn't need to know how hard the world can be... not yet
'so what are you going to do now?' phil asked. i ran my fingers through my wavy hair. why would this be so hard?
'not sure....' i tossed and turned on the couch, hoping he would come up with a solution... getting to know phil...he was clever and sweet and understanding... he was my only real friend, i realized... i needed him with me...
'look, how about i...come over and we can think about it then?' wow. am i that easy to read? of course, the one thing i needed at the time was someone who knew me...
'yeah, sounds fine,' i said, perking up a little bit. it would be nice to see someone who wasn't emotionaly burdened by me.
i jumped off of the couch and ran to the bathroom. i was a mess- michael would tell me so(every hour... minute...second it seemed), but i never gave it much thought... my hair was filthy, my eyes had bags under them....i was a wreck. i jumped into the shower, washed and rinsed, jumped out and dove for my makeup bag. the next time i looked at the clock, phil would be about five minutes away...
i opened the door and let him. i directed michael to his room and phil and i took seats on opposite sides of the couch.
'so-you doin' okay?' phil asked. he seemed to try to be so careful with me... i admired that.
'no' i said, and flopped onto the couch. 'i just chased away the only man that ever meant anything to me in my whole miserable life; and now...' i started bawling. i thought i would be composed enough to talk with him, but my shattered heart would not let me be anything more than pitiful whimpers and strange hiccups that only occured when i cried.
' sweetheart, don't....we're gonna fix this...'
'maybe you don't understand, phillip, but i cheated on him and he did nothing to me! i tried to tell him how he felt, and how much of a jackass he was for not being open but i was the jackass for saying that shit! how would you forgive a person like that?!?!?' he just simply held me and rocked me back and forth while i cried like a baby.
'danny, he won't stay away for long,'
i sniffled 'how would you know?' phil chuckled.
' 'cause the minute he left he came to my place cryin' just like you.'
'not like me...' i said.
'okay not quite as dignified...' he nuged my side, but i was still not in the mood for play, only for answers...
'what did he say?'
' he was hurtin'-bad. he wanted to be...'good enough'; he kept saying that; at first i didn't quite understand...then i stepped back and saw the big picture, he wouldn't let you see what made him love you,drove him to you because he was...scared...he wouldn't admit that to you, i mean, what man admits fear?'
'the kind that like to keep girlfirends,' i mumbled.
' 'cmon danny, give him a break; he was trying so hard not to scare you away... he didn't know what else to do.'
'what would i have to be afraid of?' i asked.
'what about it?