The crumbling brickwork of the stark walls framed you as you knelt against it, cigarette in one hand and a glass of red wine in the other. Betrayal is never kind, there is always a victim and as I stared across at you, I could understand the pain that your boyfriend must be in right at this moment. A million attempts to stay on the straight road and at a distance from you had failed. Every film you ever see or book you read would paint me as the bad guy, the one who had broken the rules and taken something that didn’t belong to him. But in this moment I can’t help feeling those films are a waste of time. Because if you put any other man in my position then I would guess that most of them would act the same. It was your smile that caused most of the trouble. That smile was pointing in my direction again and I was fighting the urge to reach out and grab you again. But we had a more serious problem than my junkyard heart. We had an angry boyfriend out in the streets looking for you, armed with the knowledge that his troubled relationship was no longer perched on jagged rocks, but was now being dragged down in a fatal riptide. There was no going back. The things we had done and changed all of that.
The cigarette flew in a high arc as you threw it away. Sparks faltered on the ground as it landed. You stood up and stared across the garden at me. Decisions. Go back to him and attempt to convince him that he’d gotten it wrong. That you were still his and nothing had happened. Or, step into a new world and walk away. Easy to say, harder to do. I knew where I stood on this matter. But my opinion held less sway as I wasn’t the one facing the consequences. This problem only raised its head because of the closeness of us both over the years we have known each other. The many years that we had fallen in and out of bars with friends or just together, drunk and comfortable in a way that just builds into something deeper, something more challenging to ignore. Sparks fly in any relationship, but in ours they kept sparking and being ignored until the intensity was overwhelming and we were over each other in the back yard of a mutual friends house. That was a couple of hours ago. We had been all over each other a lot since then. Not just in the garden, but inside the house as well. Two hours of chaotic madness in our lives that was now setting us on a new direction.
Decisions. A boyfriend who is leading you nowhere, or a guy standing under the amber glow of a streetlight staring back at you with a questioning look on his face. This could be a one off mistake or a step in a new future. The choice lay at your head. You stared back at me. A neutral look that told me nothing. You took a sip of the wine and pulled a face. The wine was no help in giving you an answer. You sighed. I was comfortable to wait. I never found it easy to be friends with women. Not my fault but something always seems to change and a fuel charge that wasn’t originally there ticks into place and suddenly it’s a new situation. We had been exactly like that. Through no fault of our own we had simply been drawn together by destiny or something or other.
A quick glance at the door to the house and then you look me directly in the eye and beam me that smile again. Its on. That smile tells me all I need to know, even before you walk over to me and place your arms around me. Stood close in the cramped and crappy garden with the light shining down on us I know this is a starting point. A starting point for a new story. The boyfriend will have to be dealt with. That will not necessarily be an easy task, but I have no fear of him. It will involve a fistfight of some kind and I know that I will walk away the victor. The question is how two brothers fighting over one girl will go down in our family.