Becca listened to him breathing, a wet, choking sound she had learned years ago meant he was at least six beers in. Not quite blackout, but not a state to be trusted with anything of importance.
“I was thinking, maybe, I mean maybe you, if you want, I mean, maybe, we could get a drink or somefin.”
If she had been uncertain of his level of intoxication prior to the request, Becca certainly wasn’t now. The sigh escaped her lungs before she could stop it.
The first syllable of Becca’s name was a hard one to whine. In regular conversation, it lent itself to an easy shortening. But a drunken whine followed with a hard consonant sounded too contrived.
“Travis,” Becca replied blandly. She didn’t care for his game anymore.
“You can’t just pretend I stopped existing, Becca,” Travis snapped, a rare moment of clarity shattering the fog of his drunken call. “We were so good together! ‘Member?”
The problem was, Becca couldn’t stop remembering. She tasted Travis with very cappuccino, to foamy drinks she had detested the thought of until he finally made her try one. She felt him whenever she slipped on her favorite worn leather boots, and unexpected anniversary gift after she was certain he’d forgotten. She smelled him in every dive-y bar, heard him in every strum of a bass guitar.
Travis haunted her. She would give anything to forget how good they had been together. So she said the only things she still believed to be true.
“You cheated on me, Travis. Whether or not we were good together ceased to be relevant from that moment on.”
“You don’t mean that,” he sniffed.
And maybe because he had always known her so well (better, in most cases, than she knew herself or admitted to herself), Becca allowed Travis’s comment to plant a singular seed of doubt in her resolve.
“You can’t tell me you don’t miss me. You can’t tell me you don’t wonder what would have happened if you’d just forgiven me and given us a second chance. Maybe not every day, but you think about it, Bec.”
And damn him to hell, because Beca couldn’t tell him any of those things. So she said the only thing she could truthfully say.
“I don’t want anything to do with you anymore, Travis.”
And then she held her breath and listened to Travis cry, willing herself not to join in the mourning of what they had been.