Cammie fiddled with her napkin as she looked down at the table. It had been a very good lunch, but she had spent most of it distracted. She had hoped to talk to Taylor about Drew, in an oblique sort of way, but now that the meal was coming to an end and her chance was ending with it, she was nervous. She wasn't used to having to ask for relationship advice, if this really even was a relationship. She took a deep breath to steal her nerves. "You and Abbie weren't always so perfectly happy, right?" She didn't know what she was going to do if Taylor said that everything had been fantastic from the beginning.
Even before she could raise her eyebrows at the abrupt change of subject--her love life as a direct leap from the reception neither of them wanted to attend a week before--Taylor was laughing and shaking her head. "There was a point where Abbie and I were so...so far away from perfectly happy."
Cammie nodded. "Was there a point where you wanted more than you had and Abbie didn't? Or you thought that Abbie didn't?" It was so much easier to talk about other people and keep herself out of it.
"It was..." Taylor shook her head as she thought back. It wasn't as long ago as it seemed, but happiness had softened some of the details. "Maybe...maybe for both of us. It was...certainly complicated." How complicated, she wasn't sure Cammie would really understand. But the end had been worth every bit of it, and Taylor couldn't regret that. She cocked her head and leaned forward slightly. Cammie's sudden interest had gone past the usual pleasantries--asking how Abbie was, which she had done at the beginning of the meal. "Are you seeing someone?"
"I, um," Cammie shook her head. "I'm not really sure. I don't know if you could call it a relationship." And now her cheeks were bright red. Girl talk wasn't something she had much practice in.
"Well, that's definitely not what I would have called what Abbie and I once had," Taylor replied. She sat back and carefully considered what to say next. She hoped Cammie was seeing a woman--for her own sanity. But it was just as likely that she wasn't, and that was perhaps where the hesitation came from. "Everything has to start somewhere."
"Yeah." Cammie nodded as she considered whether to go on or not. Taylor, after all, was probably the only person besides Drew that she could really talk to about any of it, and she definitely couldn't talk to Drew. "I just... I think I might have scared...him." She winced slightly at the pronoun, wishing she could just tell Taylor who it was. But even that was complicated. "Asking for too much, too quickly, maybe."
"Well," Taylor began as she carefully folded her napkin and unfolded it again to repeat the process. She knew that they were on dangerous ground, and she could hear the pause in Cammie's voice. "Just what have you asked for, Cammie?"
"I asked him to come to Wyoming over the recess, just, to get away from everything here. There, uh, aren't quite so many cameras in Wyoming." She hoped that Taylor would understand what she was getting at. "I didn't really mean for it to be a big deal, but I think it turned into one."
Taylor rubbed her forehead, wondering just how qualified she was to give advice in this situation...or at all. Some part of her still believed that what she had with Abbie was still dumb luck. "There's still before the recess. Maybe you should just...let him think about it."
"You don't think I should try to explain?" Even as she said it she knew it sounded dumb. She sighed. "Yeah, you're probably right. I don't want to make it worse." She shook her head, running a hand through her hair. "Someday, you're going to have to explain to me how you got through 10 years in the Navy without being celibate the entire time." And she had no doubt that Taylor hadn't been celibate.
And Taylor nearly choked on her orange juice. "Yeah...someday." Maybe when Cammie actually told her who her girlfriend was. And she didn't think that was likely to happen. "Stop obsessing, Cammie. I'm sure your trip home with your...friend...will turn out fine."
"Yeah. Thanks." Cammie smiled weakly as she flagged the waiter down and paid for lunch. She just needed to learn to let go of some things. Trying to force Drew to understand, trying to force Drew to do anything, wouldn't work.