فصل 18

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فصل 18

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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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متن انگلیسی فصل

CHAPTER EIGHTEEN

Owen

I should have known she would be gone when I woke up. I felt her heartbreak last night when she was just thinking about having to say good-bye, so the fact that she left before having to do it doesn’t surprise me.

What does surprise me is the confession lying on the pillow next to me. I pick it up to read it, but not before moving to her side of the bed. I can still smell her from here. I open the folded piece of paper and read her words.

I’ll think about last night forever, Owen. Even when I shouldn’t.

My hand falls against my chest, and I clench my fist.

I already miss her enough for it to hurt, and she’s probably only been gone an hour. I read her confession several more times. It’s easily my favorite confession now, but also the most painful.

I walk to my workroom, drag the canvas with her unfinished portrait to the middle of the floor, and set it up. I gather all the supplies I’ll need, and I stand in front of her painting. I stare down at the confession, imagining exactly what she must have looked like when she wrote it, and I finally have the inspiration I need to finish the portrait.

I pick up my brush, and I paint her.

I’m not sure how much time has passed. One day. Two days. I think I stopped three times to eat, at least. It’s dark outside, I know that much.

But I’m finally finished.

I rarely feel that any of my paintings ever make it to a finishing point. There’s always something else I want to add to them, like a few more brushstrokes or another color. But there comes a point with every painting when I just have to stop and accept it for what it is.

I’m at that point with this painting. It’s probably the most realistic painting I’ve ever laid out on canvas.

Her expression is exactly how I want to remember her. It’s not a happy expression. In fact, she looks kind of sad. I want to think it’s the same look she’ll get on her face every time she thinks about me. A look that reveals how much she misses me. Even when she shouldn’t.

I drag the painting to a spot against the wall. I find the confession she left on my pillow this morning, and I attach it to the wall next to her face. I pull the box of confessions she’s left me over the last few weeks, and I attach those all around her painting.

I take a step back and I stare at the only piece I have left of her.

“What ever happened between you and Auburn?” Harrison asks.

I shrug.

“The usual?”

I shake my head. “Not even close.”

He cocks an eyebrow. “Wow,” he says. “That’s a first. Pretty sure I want to hear the rest of this story.” He grabs another beer and slides it across the bar toward me. He leans over and pops the tab. “Give me the condensed version, though. I close in a few hours.”

I laugh. “That’s easy. She’s the reason for it all, Harrison.”

He looks at me with a confused expression.

“You said condensed,” I tell him. “That’s the condensed version.”

Harrison shakes his head. “Well in that case, I change my mind. I want the detailed version.”

I smile and look down at my phone. It’s already after ten. “Maybe next time. I’ve already been here for two hours.” I lay money on the bar and take one last sip of the beer. He waves me off as I turn to head back to my studio. The painting I finished of her earlier should be close to dry now. I think this might be the first painting I ever hang in the bedroom area of my apartment.

I pull my key out of my pocket and slide it into the door, but the door isn’t locked.

I know I locked it. I never leave here without locking it.

I push the door open, and the second I do, my whole world stops. I look to my left. To my right. I walk further into my studio and I spin around, staring at the damage that’s been done to everything I own. Everything I’ve worked for.

Red paint lines the walls, the floors, covers every painting in the entire downstairs area. The first thing I do is rush to one of the paintings closest to me. I touch the paint smeared across the canvas and can tell it’s already drying. It’s probably been drying for about an hour now. Whoever did this was waiting for me to walk out of the studio tonight.

As soon as Trey comes to mind, that’s when the real panic sets in. I immediately scale the stairs and head straight to my workroom. As soon as I swing open the door, I bend over and press my hands to my thighs. I exhale a huge sigh of relief.

They didn’t touch it.

Whoever was here didn’t touch the painting I made of her. After I allow myself a few minutes to recover, I stand and walk to her painting. Even though the painting hasn’t been touched, something is different.

Something is off.

And that’s when I notice the confession she left on my pillow.

It’s missing.

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