Breaking Habits

A/N: This is the first story in a series of posts that I will be writing as part my beloved group’s version of a nanowrimo, which takes writing to a lesser degree. This is supposedly the story for the prompt for the first day, but I was busy with work so I was not able to finish it immediately (/ n \)

Christine tossed and turned in her bed, watching the clock strike a quarter past 10 in the evening. Normally, she would be sleepy enough to be drift off until her alarm would wake her up, but after encountering bad luck with some of her special clients, her eyes felt more alive than they have for the past few days. Her energy was depleted, but something in her longed for a way to calm her nerves that involved methods that went beyond her comfort zone.

Christine was never the kind of person who would stay out late, much less do something beyond her normal routine of bringing a book to bed. Her friends, on the other hand, had a habit of sending her texts weekly, inviting her to drink with them. She stared at the screen of her phone as she contemplated on what else to do to get herself back to sleep.

It isn’t like I’m going to get any more sleep than I will.

Sighing heavily, she threw back the covers of her small bed and reached for her jacket slung over the chair.

***

Groaning inwardly, Christine frantically pulled at her black dress, in spite of its modest length. She stared at the other girls about her age, with their hair pulled back and their outfits showing so much skin that she wondered if there was anything else that the outfit covered at all. She spotted some of acquaintances during her cases for her clients in spite of their heavily shaded eyes and dark lips. She pulled the jacket closer to herself as she made her way inside the bar.

She immediately knew that this was definitely not the place for her. The speakers were painful to her ears, and she could not understand how this place would be able to make people dance so closely to one another. She could smell the alcohol even from the moment she entered the place, and she could not help but turn around and head outside. But as she did so, she bumped into someone from behind, and failing to keep her balance, fell on her bum.

“Christine?”

She knew that voice from anywhere. Gathering her strength, she looked up into a pair of crystal green eyes filled with surprise and concern. Ignoring his outstretched hand, Christine slowly stood up, internally scolding herself for not looking where she was going.

“My bad, Ian. I suppose you’re off looking for some other girls?” she replied acidly. She knew she struck home when he looked away. Without waiting for an answer, Christine made her way out of the club.

Stupid, stupid, stupid! How could I have forgotten where I am!

Memories started rushing in like a waterfall: the day they first met over a notebook that Christine left in the classroom; the day Ian asked her out; the days they celebrated their anniversaries.

But one memory remained of the last time she saw him. One which made her swear to never take a chance beyond what she knew would be a risky move.

***

“Are you even sure that is going to qualify as a smart casual outfit?”

Christine smiled at her boyfriend’s outfit for the day: A white long sleeved shirt and a pair of jeans with his trademark converse shoes. He was on the chubby side, which she had always found cute; but seeing Ian in these kinds of outfits made her swoon because of how nice he could look. He was off to meet a business partner in town, which would potentially boost his reputation in his line of work.

Ian chuckled, pulling her closer for a kiss.

“I promise I won’t be late.”

“You know our promise, right?” she had asked teasingly.

“No drinks, no girls, always think.”

She kissed his cheek once more as she made her own preparations for her work with her clients, not knowing that she would eventually stay up until the wee hours of the morning. Little had she known that if she had not stayed up late, she wouldn’t have seen Ian with a woman as they opened the door to their apartment as they hung on to each other as if they needed each other like air. She would have never known the next day that there was no such meeting that day, and that Ian had been on leave from his job for the day.

***

The phone rang endlessly as she went back to her small room. She did not care if it was him, or her friends, or anyone who had seen her bump into him earlier that night. She did not care for what would happen the next day. She did not want to think about the consequences of breaking her habit of sleeping early.

She reached into the back of her closet and brought out a bottle of tequila and locked herself in the room until dawn.

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