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No Regrets

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Annabelle Stevens sighed in relief as she released her dark auburn hair from the harsh bun it had been forced into during the seven hours she spent on the Hudson campus earlier in the day. Making her way up the stairs of her loft apartment, she dropped her bags on the hardwood floor, before falling onto face first onto her King size bed.

The few months of silence were quickly shattered as her phone began blaring from the back pocket of her navy blue dress pants. Groaning, she pressed the circular green button, “what.”

A deep chuckle met her ears as she put it on speaker and resumed her position, “tough day, carina?” When unrecognizable mumblings were his only reply, he continued, “Do you want to meet me at Gotham? Or do you want me to bring take out?”

She shrugged, before remembering that he could not see her, “Doesn’t matter. How late are you staying?”

“Nothing more I can do tonight.”

Annabelle propped herself up onto her knees and brought the phone to her ear, “I’ll meet you at Gotham. But I’m not changing.” His laughter was the only reply she heard before hanging up.

Kicking her heels to the side, as she passed them, she stripped her blue short sleeved jacket off, as well as her Beatles t-shirt, before grabbing a mint colored long sleeved lace top and slipping it on before grabbing a pair of flats from the bottom of her closet.

Swiping a fresh coat of her deep red lipstick onto her usually pale pink lips, Annabelle locked her door and began her memorized path to the subway station.

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Annabelle closed her eyes in temporary relief as she walked pass the air conditioned doors of Gotham tavern, thankful to be out of the humid air surrounding Manhattan. She nodded at the bartender before walking to their usual table, where her boyfriend was already seated. He stood up, as she approached, pressing a quick kiss to her cheek, before pulling her chair away from the table.

She smiled in appreciation as he walked back to his side of the table, “Hola.”

His lips curved upwards as they formed his usual smirk, “Hola. I ordered your usual and the food.”

“You, my love, are perfect. I’m starving.” She took a long drink of her violet tinted cocktail before speaking again, “So, how was your day? Make any lawyers cry?” She grinned at the unimpressed look she received, “But on the real, there is something I need to tell you about.”

She paused as their first courses were placed in front of the duo. He took the opportunity to question her nervous features, “Did something happen?”

Annabelle’s face clouded in confusion before realization filled her eyes, “No!” She winced at the loudness of her voice, before repeating at a much softer volume, “Nothing like that. At least not to me. Uhm, I heard some rumors today about a party this weekend…and from what I gathered from the random pieces I caught, it seemed like a freshman was…” she paused as she watched him eat one of the oysters, reminding her that she had not eaten all day.

He covered his mouth as he spoke, “and?”

“And the guys they were talking about. It isn’t the first time I’ve heard their names. I mean, in this context. And, I know it’s probably nothing, but I wasn’t sure if you had a case about it or something and if it would—“

“Thank you,” green met blue as he interrupted her rambling explanation, “I haven’t heard anything, but I’m glad you let me know.” He gently squeezed her hand as their shared dessert was brought out, “you need to be careful, regardless of whether or not what you’ve heard it true.”

Once the night was over and the couple sat parked in front of Annabelle’s building’s entrance, silent except for the sounds of their breathing, intermingling with each other as their lips continually met. “Raf, I really have to go.” Kiss. “I’ve got papers to grade.” Kiss. “And papers to write.” Kiss. “If I fail, I will kill you.”

His short chuckle separated them long enough for her to begin catching her breath, “Text me when you get up, okay?”

“Yup. Love you.”

“Love you, carina.” Another kiss and she was slipping out of the car and into the building she had occupied for three years.
Rafael sat in his car, watching as the light on the third floor switched on, signifying that Annabelle had made it into the loft. His phone pinged thirty seconds later.

Annabelle Stevens: I’m in. I’m safe. The door is locked. Quit staring at my house like a creeper. Love you.