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Never Have Gotten This Far

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Taking a deep breath and running a hand through her hair, Cathy opened the door to the bedroom again. "Look," she began. "This isn't just some party. It's a movie premiere. My first movie premiere, for my first movie. If I didn't go, it would be career suicide." Well, not completely, she supposed. Maybe not on stage, which she preferred to the screen, but she couldn't always get work on stage, and the recognition that she had gotten already from the promotions of the movie...she couldn't ruin all that now. "And more than that, I want to go. Okay? This is a big deal to me. So...maybe you want to stay home, Jamie, but I'm going."

Of course, she received no response to that. She was so exhausted from fighting, fighting with him and his insecurities and his unfinished manuscripts. She felt a physical ache, begging for just one day without all this stress. But she walked forward, took a seat on the other side of the bed to his. Eventually, she turned back to him. "What is the problem?" she asked, gently. "Is it because you're writing fluff articles for that magazine again?" He didn't answer, but they both knew that was it. Almost anything anymore was about this competition in his mind, comparing his career to hers, his failure to her success. Maybe it had been like that from the beginning, but it had only gotten worse.

"If you hate it so much, then just quit!" she burst. "Or don't, stick with it, and finish your book,'ll work out, I know you'll finish something, and it will be amazing. I believe that. You just get so impatient." She remembered the early days of their relationships, the way Jamie talked about his ideas. It wasn't just his eyes that lit up, he burst with this animated spirit, this excitement. And to hear him tell one of his stories, no one could doubt his gift. She didn't.

She had always believed in him.

She saw him scoff at the idea that he was impatient. It was easy for her to say, he liked to say, when her career had taken off so quickly. He had been working at this for years, and of course, there were plenty of artists who had to work for many years more before they found success, but Cathy was apparently not the person to tell him that.

She stood up, knowing that trying to restore his faith in his talent wasn't really going to get her anywhere, and faced his back with arms crossed. "But the truth is, Jamie, I'm sorry you haven't written the next great American novel yet, but this night isn't about you. This is my night, and I would just like for once for my husband to be happy for me. Is that so much to ask? Really? Do I honestly have to wait until you're successful for you to start supporting me? I've always supported you! I wouldn't even be bothering right now if I didn't, but if I have to wait for you to finally get a book finished and published before I can feel comfortable in my own success...I can't do that. And I shouldn't have to."

As she looked at him, she felt the back of her neck, and even her chest start to ache from the tension. This wasn't how she wanted to feel tonight, but she should have expected it. She could remember a time when they hardly ever fought, or when they did, they both apologized and made up soon after. Now there were never any apologies, just bouts of fighting followed by lulls just numb enough to get along. She could remember a time, not even five years ago, when she had loved him so much she could hardly think. She could remember that she had once felt that way, but what scared her now was that she had almost completely forgotten what it felt like.

But she wasn't ready to think about that. Wasn't ready to accept the possibility that she could ever not be in love with Jamie, much less that she might have already reached that point or be very near it. So, she focused on being mad. On being hurt that he wouldn't just for one night go out and act like two people in love, like a husband and wife, were supposed to be.

She straightened her posture. "Fine," she said, cooly. "Stay here and brood. Maybe it will give you something to write about." And without another word, she walked out, letting the door slam behind her, but not so loudly as it used to.