You look up when Matthew Williams enters, smiling. You've had a crush on him for the longest of times, but you're way too shy to tell him that. Besides, he doesn't seem interested in you. He's really nice to you, but that's only during the rare occurrences of him actually talking to you. Besides, you already have a boyfriend; he's the ever so stoic Berwald Oxenstierna who seems like he can't give you the time of day.
No one ever notices Matthew, but the funny thing is that you'd wish he'd notice you.
You're just an afterthought to him, the person he bumps into in the middle of the road by accident.
So you lower your gaze, letting your smile fade.
This is why you're with Berwald; he asked you to be his girlfriend, and since you're never going to get Matthew to ever notice you, at least romantically, you told yourself to move on and date him.
Too bad Berwald spends more time with Tino Väinämöinen, his best friend, and he doesn't even text you or call you or visit but once a week. You both are in the most pathetic relationship in the world.
Romance makes you depressed.
"(Name)?" Arthur asks you. "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine," you whisper, and you take another drink of your tea.
Matthew thinks he saw you glance up at him with a smile, but when he looked back at you to make sure, your attention was directed towards Arthur, laughing at something he said.
He instantly felt jealous, but he tells himself he shouldn't. He's had a crush on you from the first moment he saw you, but you've never noticed him. Sometimes, you'll share a few words with him, and on days when he's especially lucky, you'll give him a smile and a laugh, but usually, you're surrounded by walls of guys who claim they're in love with you…but of course, it's just a lie.
All of your relationships have ended with your heart breaking.
Matthew doesn't know why you keep throwing yourself back into the fire when every guy you've been with since eighth grade has broken your heart. Is it even worth it anymore? Are you just naïve?
He sits down at a table, completely alone, and he's waiting for someone to notice him.
No one really ever notices the socially transparent Canadian…
"Hey, love, I have to go. Are you sure you'll be all right by yourself?" Arthur suddenly says aloud, standing up.
"Don't worry about me, Artie. I'll catch a cab home."
"Okay," the Brit says hesitantly before he bends down and kisses the cheek of his younger sister.
God, you're just so beautiful…!
As soon as Arthur steps through the door of the café, you stand up and head over for the lonely Canadian. Matthew looks up at you in surprise, but you simply give him a bright smile.
"Is this seat taken?" you ask, and Matthew is fighting off the urge to declare how wonderful you are…but he settles for merely shaking his head. "Thanks," you say before sitting down in front of him. "It must be frustrating being ignored."
He can't help wonder that you probably don't know the feeling very well; every guys dotes on you, and even when they're being assholes, you still have your big brother treating you like a princess.
"You get used to it," he says, looking down at the table with its ancient scratch marks carved into the top. "Do you need something, (name)?"
You're entirely disappointed at his tone, wishing he'd warm up to you. While most guys are ready to do your bidding in a moment's notice, Matthew only ever seems annoyed to be in your presence.
You don't even care about those other guys. You'd give anything at all to have Matthew care for you, even if for only one day.
"You seemed like you could use company," you state.
He shakes his head, hating himself for being so pathetic as to be receiving pity from you. "Honestly, you get used to it. It doesn't faze me anymore." Of course, that's a lie, but Matt's gotten better at handling the disappointment.
"That's good," you comment, having run out of things to say.
Suddenly, your phone rings. You look at Matt and say, "Excuse me. I need to take this," and you immediately pick up. "Hello?"
"H-hey, (name)?" you hear. "It's…T-tino."
"Oh, hi! How are you? How's Berwald? You're with him, right?"
You fail to notice Matthew's expression darkening.
"(N)-(name)…" Tino sputters, and he seems like he's on the verge of crying. "I…I am so sorry."
"W-what's…wrong?" you ask, absolutely concerned.
"I slept with him, (Name)! I slept with Berwald!" Your eyes widen as your breath sharpens. You've been going out with a guy who's into men… This is certainly a special case of heartbreak. Left behind because your boyfriend's apparently gay. "He and I have been friends for so long…and…and…I don't know what happened! I am so sorry!"
"Don't worry about it, Tino. It's no big deal."
"Please tell him it's over. I hope he's happy with you…and likewise."
You hang up before he can say anything else, and you tell yourself not to cry. You instantly put on a smile at Matthew and say, "So, have you tried the tea here? Absolutely delicious."
"Aren't you sad?" Matthew asks, his look softening. "I mean, all these years I've known you…you keep going out with these guys… How much longer will it be? How much can your heart take before he completely breaks?"
You've never even realized Matt paying attention to your love life.
"I guess I'm just used to it…" you whisper, lowering your gaze.
You really don't want to think of it, not in public. When you get home, you'll cry and throw a fit and hate the world, but not here, not in front of Matthew Williams.
"B-but…they're so mean to you, (name)…"
"It happens. But hey…at least they're happy with someone else now, huh?"
Matthew looks down at his lap, never having realized how strong you are. To put up such a face despite having just been confessed to the betrayal of your boyfriend… How can you handle it?
"Do you want to do the skating rink with me?" he asks all of a sudden, catching you off guard.
You give him a tentative smile and nod. "Sure."
He stands and holds out his hand for you. Your heart gives a leap as you take it; his hand is incredibly warm, and it seems to fit perfectly with yours.
Even if you should be over him by now, after it has been so many years and so many guys, you aren't, and that's what makes you feel the worse.
"Matthew…I can't stop!" you shriek as you continue going.
You haven't ice skated since you were ten.
He races up to catch you, wrapping his arm around your waist. He slows you down and pulls you to a stop, inches from the wall. Your faces are near each other's, both of your breaths creating tiny puffs of air in front of your eyes. You've never noticed his eyes are slightly more violet than blue, and it makes you break out into a grin.
"Thanks," you whisper, still peering into his beautiful eyes. He's so absolutely sweet! Why couldn't he have been the one to fall for you instead of those other guys (or so they claimed)?
"U-uh…no problem!" he replies as he lets you go, his cheeks shooting up in color.
He's so cute!
"D-do…you want something to drink? I can get us some coffee with maple syrup! It's really good!" he says kind of excitedly, and it sends your heart into a frenzy.
You nod, and you can't help but continue to smile like an idiot. "Sure!"
He takes your hand, leading you through the crowd to the padded area. You guys walk awkwardly to the food window, and you have to do the ordering because the cashier doesn't take notice of him. Matt pays for the both of you, and you guys receive your coffee.
You both sit down next to each other on a bench, and you feel extremely shy but happy at the same time.
"Have you noticed this is the longest time we've spent together since seventh grade?" you observe with a slight laugh. You keep your eyes on the ice skaters inside the rink, too nervous to look at Mattie. "In ten years, this is our longest moment together, our longest conversation,…everything."
He seems surprised that you've noticed that. "Yeah…"
"It's kind of sad, isn't it?" you continue as you look down into the coffee cup. "You and I would have made such good friends…"
And Matthew is suddenly no longer smiling. Suddenly, he feels pathetic and pitiful, and he just wants you to never say the f-word again. "Nice guys finish last," he mutters to himself, wallowing in self-pity.
But you hear him, and it really sparks an interest. "Why do you say that?" He looks up at you with a guilty look that he desperately tries to hide. "Nice guys don't finish last."
Suddenly, he doesn't want to be here with you at all. He wishes you had never said something so…insensitive and ignorant, at least in his point of view. "Yes, they do," he argues softly. "I always do."
You shake your head, gently hitting his shoulder with yours. "Are you kidding me? You're awesome!"
"I need to go," he says, throwing away the untouched coffee into the trash can. He takes off his skates and heads for the place where he left his shoes and things, walking quickly.
"Matthew," you say as you struggle to take off your skates.
By the time they're off, Matt already has his shoes on and has returned the skates. He heads out of the door, and you stand there, this empty feeling filling you up.
You sit back down, taking a drink of your maple syrup coffee, and suddenly, you smile. It's delicious, but that shouldn't surprise you. Matthew recommended it to you.
And then you stand again, determination covering every inch of your body.
You've known him for ten years, been in love with him for nine years, so there is no way in Heaven, Hell, Earth, and all the other worlds that you're going to let him just walk out on you.
You stand in front of Matthew's house, your stomach flipping and flopping and pissing you off. Your palms are sweaty, and honestly, you don't look that great either. The cab you took left you about three streets away, and you had to run here.
It's hard to run in heels.
Besides, you are in an internal conflict. You want to talk to him…but then you don't. You want to be assertive, but you don't want to be mocked or rejected…
This might just be the most difficult thing you've ever done, and you once dated that annoying, German ("Prussian") narcissist, Gilbert!
You ring the doorbell, wishing for the stars too bless you with luck and strength, and your prayers are answered when the door opens.
Matthew stares at you in shock. "(N)-(name)…?"
"Why are you mad at me?" you blurt before you can chicken out.
He continues to stare at you, and you suddenly feel very stupid and useless.
And you certainly feel very irritated.
"What is this whole…nice guys finish last thing? This whole anger? We've known each other for ten years! Our first actual memory made, and you ruined it by running off without an explanation!" He doesn't say anything else, just looks down at his shoes. "Do you know how hard it is for me to come over to you and just say hi? I swear, every time I talk to you, you look like you want me gone! I can't help it if I'm a total wreck around you…and maybe you do want me gone, as today's events seem to show, but I think I at least deserve an explanation. At least I've tried to become friends with you. What have you done? Ignored me for the past ten years?"
"I'm sorry I am the only guy who doesn't trip over his feet for you," he suddenly says, but he knows he's lying. He's head over heels in love with you.
"A simply hello would suffice! You don't have any right to get mad at me!"
"Are you kidding me?" he whispers, sounding really…irate with you. "Ten years and I'm friend-zoned. Nice guys always finish last. You're so into guys who only cheat on you or treat you bad."
"Well, it isn't my fault that the only guy I've ever wanted doesn't even want to glance my way," you mumble, wanting to cry. Why does he continue to be so mean to you?
"Who?" he demands, and you find it odd that he acts like he's yelling, but his voice is still so soft.
You both stare at each other, letting the breeze pass between you, and then he reaches forward, cradling your chin lightly. He opens his mouth to say something, but you suddenly cover it with yours, pushing him into his house. The door shuts with a loud bang just as his arms wrap themselves around your waist.
"I love you," you whisper as one of his hands grasps your hair.
"I've always loved you," he tells you.
"I thought you'd never notice me."
"That's what I thought about you."
And you guys pause to laugh at the misunderstanding that could have saved both of you tons of trouble this past decade. Then he picks you up and carries you upstairs, where you guys curl up in his bed and fall asleep.
Geez. Confessing is such tiring work. c;