Unsteady

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Unsteady

* a Chris Evans fan fic*

By avenger-nerd-mom

Actor Chris Evans has some tough decisions to make and has to deal with consequences of his actions

Warnings: Language, Angst, Adult Situations

Inspired by a vision I had while driving and listening to “Unsteady” by the X Ambassadors

Word Count: 1055

Sitting on the back porch he watches the lights of the cars driving down into the valley, like little ants with lights strapped on their heads. He pushes away at the cigarette box, knowing he needs to stop, but now isn’t the time.  He bites at his lip.  “Fuck it.”

He taps the side of the box and one rolls out across the table and he grabs it between his fingers, lifting it to his pouty red lips. He lets it dip low as he pulls the lighter from his pocket.  Cupping his hand around the end, he bites the filter and lights it up, pulling a long sweet draw into his lungs, like mana from heaven.

He pinches the bridge of his nose, disappointed in himself again.  The song echoes on repeat from his phone, and as much as it cuts his soul, it’s the only thing grounding him right now.  The lighter flips between his fingers, a talent he acquired at an early age to show off to the older, cooler boys in the neighborhood when he was just a kid.  He watches the silver flash and shine in the night and is lulled by the sound of crickets and the dog’s lazy, sleeping breath at his feet.

His thoughts roam and he drops the lighter with a clang against the glass patio table.  He can’t control the itching in his fingers, the pain in his heart and he opens the locked file on his phone.  Her face springs to life on the screen.  He leans back in the chair and takes another deep inhale of the toxins poisoning his system.  Scrolling through each picture, her smile greets him; calls to him.  Makes him remember…

The sliding door opens and he doesn’t even look up.  “Hey.  Are you coming to bed?” she asks, her voice small and unsure, child-like.

He scoffs quietly, but does his best to hold in his venom.  “No; I told you to go to sleep.  I’ll be in when I feel like it.  I’m sleeping on the couch anyway.”

Not looking her way, he can feel her hover there for a moment longer, debating if it’s even worth a fight anymore.  She must decide it’s not because the door clicks closed without another word.

His finger pushes ahead forcefully and stops as if by magic on his favorite photo.  She’d been caught in the rain and her hair and make-up were a mess… The moment in time frozen inside his phone, in his memory.

He stares at it for what seems like hours.  The cigarette slowly burns away and his throat feels scratchy from the smoke.  Looking at the time; he realizes she might still be awake and he takes a chance.

Dialing her number, he waits.  It rings and rings.  Just as he’s just about to give up, she answers, her voice groggy.

“Chris; I told you not to call me anymore.”

Hearing the rustle of sheets, he pictures her in her bed, sleepy and hair tousled.  It pierces his mind at that moment that she may not be alone, and he clutches his chest from the pain.  His voice is true and honest.  “I couldn’t help myself,” he sighs weighed down with his emotions.

The dog stirs at his feet and stiffly gets up, resting his head on his master’s lap.  Chris reaches down and scratches between his ears.  “Don’t hang up,” he pleads.

She sighs and he hears the click of the light switch.  She’s invested in conversation for now.  “What do you want?” she asks, quiet but not cold or harsh.  Sympathetic.

I want you back.  I fucked up.  I threw away too many good things.  I don’t know how to fix it; how to make it better.

The song begins another play on the infinite loop he has set. “I just needed to talk; to hear you.”  A firefly lands on the table and he watches the blinking light, mesmerized by the beauty of nature.  Resting his head against the back of the cushioned patio chair, he closes his eyes again and she fills his thoughts.

“I can’t do this, Chris.  It hurts too much,” she admits.  “It’s not good for you and I’m trying to move forward…” her voice dwindles away, stretched thin with her own pain and suffering.

He listens to her quiet breathing.  “Tell me how to fix it,” he quietly begs, tears forming in his eyes and pooling against his thick lashes.  He solemnly decides to let them wash over him if they spill from their hold.  To let her hear his torment…

A faint rattling sound is heard through the phone and he again wonders if she’s alone.

“I don’t know if you can…” she replies.  “If half the things on the gossip pages are true…”

He sighs bitterly.  “You never used to believe the things you read.”  The dog bores with his affections and wanders out to the yard for a late night romp and Chris begins to fumble with the lighter again.

“I also believed you’d never hurt me.”

Her words cut and sear at his wounded heart.  “You never gave me time to explain; I never meant to hurt you and it wasn’t-”

“Stop.  I’m not doing this, Chris.  You don’t get to call me late at night, when you’re sad and lonely.  You don’t get to invade my head….”

Her tone changes, grows in strength.  “If you want it bad enough, you fix it.  You get your head out of your ass, you make the changes you know you need to make.  But you have to do that for YOU, not for me, or your other fans, or your family, but for YOU… maybe in a few months, you can call me again.  At a normal time of day, and we can talk.  Or you come out to visit and we go to dinner.  But I want no part of this now, not like this.  Don’t do this to yourself again…”  She pauses and he waits.  She sniffles and his heart surges.  “I love you Chris, but don’t do this to me.  I can’t.”

The line clicks dead.  She said ‘I love you.’  Hope.  Hope springs to life again and he begins to think of the changes ahead for the coming days…

Copyright © 2017  avenger-nerd-mom.  All rights reserved. Intellectual property of avenger-nerd-mom

 

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