Monday, January 10, 2011
He didn’t call that night.
Edie lay on her bed, thinking up reasons that he couldn’t call, like the taxi had gotten lost on the way to the airport or that the whole team was stuck in some freight elevator somewhere or a grain silo had fallen over on the team bus.
There were other things she was thinking too, less grisly things but gruesome all the same.
Things like another woman. Someone else held in those strong arms of his, sharing a narrow hotel bed, pressed beneath the width of his chest.
Edie closed her eyes and dismissed those thoughts. He wouldn’t….
But she had to admit that he could. All professional athletes were rumored to be man whores but hockey players had a special reputation for having ‘one in every port’ as they said. She had a difficult time imagining the slightly geeky, somewhat awkward, polite young man she’d fallen for picking up some random puck fuck but….
But she could imagine some slut in a short skirt and way too high heels flipping her blonde hair and batting her fake eyelashes at him while Kaner plied Jon with drinks and the rest of the guys told him no one would know….
Jon stared at his phone, sitting on the bedside table, shut off.
He wanted to call her. It felt strange not calling her, strange not hearing her voice while he lay in bed wishing she was there with him.
They’d talked every night since they’d boarded separate planes at O’Hare. They’d talked about everything from when they’d learned to walk to embarrassing stories about first kisses. They never seemed to run out of things to talk about. He felt like he could tell her anything, that she would understand and even if she didn’t, she’d try, earnestly. That’s what Edie was like, honest, straightforward and sincere.
He reached for his phone. One, phone call wouldn’t hurt. He’d just keep it short, not get into all that what are you wearing and heavy breathing stuff. He’d just say goodnight, tell her he missed her. That would be okay, wouldn’t it?
After all, they’d kicked some serious Oiler butt tonight. They’d put together a real sixlty minutes out there and he’d score a fucking hattie tonight. He deserved to talk to her.
“Don’t even think about it.”
Jon looked up to find Pat in the bed across from his staring him down.
“I just want to say goodnight,” he explained. “That’s totally all…just…that’s it.” Pat raised his eyebrow at him in that ‘do you smellll what the Rock is cookin’’ kind of way and Jon slowly withdrew his hand. Looking smug, Pat closed his eyes and snuggle farther under his blanket. Jon sighed and rolled over to face the wall.
He wondered what she was doing. He wondered if she was asleep and if she was, if she was dreaming about him? He wanted to think that she was, and that she was missing him the way he was missing her. He hoped she’d seen the game, that she’d seen his hat trick and that she would be proud of him.
‘Oh to hell with it’ he thought and rolled back over and reached for his phone, except it wasn’t there. He narrowed his eyes at Pat who, without even opening his eyes, pushed Jon’s phone under his pillow.
Edie woke up to the sound of her alarm clock blaring that annoying Katie Perry ‘Fireworks’ song. Wincing, she batted at the snooze button and then, having been successful in silencing the radio, she picked up her phone and, with one eye open, checked it for messages.
There was none. Not so much as a fucking text. There wasn’t even a single missed call.
She stared at her phone for a long minute and did her best not to think the worst and then she put her phone down and rolled over and pulled the quilt up over her head.
“This is why you don’t date,” she reminded herself irritably, “because boys are stupid and they smell.” She shut her eyes and bit back the automatic reply that came to her lips. ‘But he smells so good, especially when he’s just out of the shower and smells like soap and warm, boy skin.’ “You knew it couldn’t last,” she added, taking a deep breath and forcing herself up and out from under the quilt and into a sitting position. “It was a thing and now it’s not a thing and you have to go to work and not think about it.” ‘Yeah, as if that is even remotely possible’, she thought as she swung her legs over the edge of the bed and into her slippers.
She wasn’t going to get over it in a day, but if this is day one, she told herself as she pulled her black silk kimono on and headed for the bathroom, than it just wouldn’t hurt as much tomorrow.
“Or maybe he’ll call in like an hour and you’ll feel like a total bitch for thinking badly of him,” she thought out loud and then smiled at herself in her bathroom mirror. Her smile didn’t last long and not just because of a big, ugly pussy zit that had just surfaced on her chin but because she didn’t really believe in Prince Charming’s and happy endings. “And maybe he won’t,” she told herself firmly , making a face at her reflection before she turned and reached into the shower to turn it on, hot, as hot as she could stand it.
Maybe she could scald away the memory of his hands on her skin.
He felt like he was skating through quicksand. His arms felt leaden. His stick felt like it weighed at least a hundred pounds.
Jon leaned against his stick and watched Shooter and Kaner streaking down on Duncs and Turcs on a two on one drill. He didn’t have their speed, even on a good day, but today he didn’t think he could even manage to get a shot off. He felt like he was stuck in slow motion.
He’d torn the room apart while Kaner had been chowing down on his steak and eggs this morning and hadn’t been able to find his phone. He wished he’d memorized her number or even the name of the place she worked but he wasn’t good with numbers like that. Ask him to find the distance between two points on an isosceles triangle and he could probably do it in his head. Ask him a phone number and he’d pull out his iPhone.
“Still moping?” Kaner asked as he sent a shower of snow up Jon’s leg. Jon looked down at the ice clinging to his socks and then up at his team mate’s playful grin and it took every ounce of willpower Jon had not to pick him up by his shoulder pads and toss him against the glass.
“What if my mom calls? What if there’s an emergency?” he asked, to which Kaner just shrugged.
“Then I’ll let you talk to your mom,” Pat just kept smiling, like it was no big deal. Jon ground his teeth together and took a deep breath through his nose, making his nostrils flare.
“Look I played great last night and I….”
“Yeah, exactly, so why fuck with that now huh?” Kaner grinned and pushed off, skating away across the ice. Jon stared after him, seriously considering using his stick like a spear.
“The kid has a point,” Sharpie pointed out tentatively. Jon’s only response was a feral growl. “Okay, okay,” Patrick laughed and held up his gloved hands in defense. “I’ll try and get the damn phone back for you. I know you’re serious about this girl.”
“I’m seriously gonna kill him if I’ve messed this up now,” Jon snarled.
“If she’s written you off after one night she’s not worth it, believe me,” Sharpie laid his hand on Jon’s shoulder. Jon shrugged it off.
Edie fingered the petals on the daisy nearest to her phone as she listened to one of her customers bitching about a delivery. She’d heard him bitch about every order for a year, so it was only a matter of making the right noises at the right time to get through it, which was a good thing, as her brain was definitely somewhere else.
She’d been doing her best not to think about Jon, or about why he hadn’t called, but as soon as she’d sat down at her desk, the flowers were an immediate and constant reminder. She’d come up with a hundred and one reasons for his not calling that didn’t include his sleeping with someone else, and yet, as she listened to her client complaining about the delivery time, she kept picturing some tramp leaving bubblegum pink lip gloss on his dick.
“Emon, I get it. No deliveries before noon. But you know what these douchebag truck drivers are like. I could give them all the directions in the world and they’d ignore every one of them.” It was the right thing to say. It got her customer to the point where he calmed down enough that she could get him off the phone. “I know, I know. I’ll speak to them…again,” she mumbled, trying to sound tough but friendly. “Okay, I tell you what. I’ll use a different delivery company for the next order, alright?” she added and then closed her eyes and let out a sigh. This was the last thing she needed today was this. “Good. Okay. Thanks for being so understanding.” She hung up the phone and dropped her head onto her desk. “Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck!”
“Okay, what happened to your happy I’m about to get laid in two days face?” Edie peered up with one eye towards Carolyn who was peering over the divider at her.
“He didn’t call,” she sighed and went back to banging her head gently on the edge of the desk.
“What? My boy lollipop? The good Canadian kid who looks like butter wouldn’t melt in his fucking mouth didn’t call you last night?” Edie shook her head and let out a pain filled moan.
“I hate that it matters. I hate that I care about it at all. I hate that I’m sitting here, worrying about it and I fucking hate him for making me feel this way,” Edie spat, exasperated, with herself, with him.
“Oh my god, you’re in love with him,” Carolyn hissed, glancing around her to see if anyone else was listening. Edie opened her mouth to object but no words came out. To say she didn’t would be a lie and she knew it. It didn’t make her happy but she knew it was true. “Okay, so call him. Put yourself out of your misery for crying out loud.” Edie turned her cheek so that she could see her phone sitting on the top of her in box. She stared longingly at it for a moment and then shook her head.
“I don’t want to be needy. If he’s busy…I mean…fuck, if I’m going to have a long distance relationship with…,” she almost said his name, only managing to swallow it at the last moment. “Then I can’t be calling him all the time.”
“Hey, if you’re this out of your mind now, by tonight you’re going to be tearing your hair out and babe, it’s only fun if he’s pulling on it, if you know what I mean,” Carolyn grinned. Edie knew her friend was trying her best to lighten up the situation, but she wasn’t in the mood to be make light of how she was feeling.
“Give it to me.” Jon stood over Pat in the dressing room, getting angrier and angrier by the minute while Pat continued to act as thought he hadn’t heard him. “Now Kaner.”
“After the game,” Pat replied without looking up from pulling on his socks.
“No, you’ll fucking give it to me. I could have missed a call from my agent, my mom, anything,” he snapped but all his severe tone earned him was a quick, unimpressed upwards glance.
“You haven’t. I’d have told you if you had.” That was it. Pat went back to taping his socks and back to ignoring Jon who was still standing over his smaller teammate, with hands clenched into fists, his mouth set in a very unhappy line. “She’s just a chick man. Seriously dude, she can fucking wait. What happened to bros before hoes man?” Jon seriously thought about grabbing a hold of Pat’s curls and dragging him to his feet by them and stuffing his fist into his mouth until he could grab a hold of his tonsils and pull them out. Fortunately for Pat, Skilles put his big mitts on Jon’s shoulders, reminding him where he was.
“C’mon Kaner. Him being pissed isn’t going to help him out there either.” Kaner looked up at Skilles and then at Jon and shrugged.
“Fine, but I’m telling you, you let that chick distract you now man and the next thing you know, your balls are in a jar and she only lets you visit them on special occasions.” Reaching into his bag, Pat retrieved Jon’s phone and held it out for him, pulling it back the minute Jon reached for it. “Think about what I’m saying man. Chicks fuck with your head and your game man. You’re not going to get to a Rocket Richard trophy through her pussy.”
Snatching his phone, Jon immediately turned it on to find that Pat hadn’t lied. He hadn’t missed any calls.
Still, the first thing he wanted to do was call her but just as he was scrolling through his last placed calls for her number Coach Quenneville walked in the room.
“That important Toews?” Jon looked down at his phone, crestfallen, but shook his head. “Good, you’re on my time now. Okay gentleman, here’s the game plan….”