Here is another take on the homework, shorter, sweeter and to the point.
“You did what? Without talking with me about it? Didn’t you think I should be involved? I haven’t even seen the inside of this place and you decide that we’re going to buy it? What is the matter with you?” Edward’s voice was cold and hard. “I am done.”
“Yeah, right,” said Macey. “Leave the whole mess to me to take care of while you go do your West Coast project. It’s like everything else with you – if I don’t do it, it doesn’t get done.” Her heart was pounding hard.
“I’m done.” His voice was low, almost gentle.
“What?” Figures that he’d leave everything for her to handle. She pulled the pillow out from behind her back and threw it on the floor. It had been worse than useless for her trying to get some sleep on her office couch. The rising sun insinuated pink fingers through the blinds that never had closed properly.
“What?” It had gotten quiet on his side. He must have found an office with a door where he could get away from the others. Open plan work places be damned. There was nowhere to have a decent fight -- or even a productive discussion like they were having right now.
“I didn’t want to do it like this. We’ve been together for two years now and it was really, really good for a really long time. I thought that we were going to…well, anyway. Things change.” He muttered something that she couldn’t make out.
“Edward?” She massaged her forehead. Sometimes that helped keep a migraine at bay. The pile of documents on her desk threatened to crash onto the floor. She struggled upright and shuffled to the desk.
“Look, I gotta go. You can send my stuff to my office. I’ll do the same with yours. We’re done here.” His line went dead.
Macey looked at her phone. What had happened to the connection to break like that? He must have walked further into the womb of plaster walls where you couldn't get a decent signal.
She ran her hand through her hair. There was a decent black suit that she kept for emergencies like this down in her gym locker. Did she have time to go home to shower and find something else. Maybe, if she moved fast.
Edward wasn't himself, she decided. All the stress of his own projects and the upcoming move must be getting to him. He couldn't deal with anything major now -- even something wonderful like this.
So maybe this was how it was going to be for awhile, how he was going to be about this house. She had taken the lead in finding the house of their dreams like they’d always talked about and then he bailed out on her. Not only that, but now….
Macey stopped pacing. She leaned heavily against her desk. What had just happened between them? Had Edward just broken up with her?
I love it, Louise! The assumptions she makes from "how it's always been" sets her up for the blindside hit. Her continuing the line of what she thinks is going on vs. what's really happening is perfect. good job!
I agree with Andrea and Zan. We don't know if he did or not - and that's scary for a woman who is always in control. Good job! I felt a touch of something missing in one spot though and I'm not sure how to articulate it. When she stopped pacing and wondered if he broke up or not, it felt like there should be some "thing" or a prompt that makes her change her line of thought. Does that make sense? (It's a little thing, honest, and I could be under caffeinated.)
I think you're on to something there -- I felt it, too, even as I was sprawling it out on the page, that there should be something else, something physical and present to bring her to a different line of thought. Thanks -- I have direction now!
Thanks -- this is the way that Macey lives her life, completely in her head, moving the little pieces around, failing to see what is really going on around her. And, yes, Edward is finally, truly done. For now, that is. I'm happy to report that through the course of the story, they both change a great deal and ultimately become genuine, loving, and deeply connected.
Thanks for the affirmation -- this feels great because that's what I was going for, the yammering that goes on forever in her head that reinforces a fantasy world where she has to do everything and save everyone from themselves. When reality hits and love enters in the guise of a helpless, dying old woman, Macey finally comes to a different way of relating to the world, to others, and to herself. And, yes, spoiler alert, she and Edward do find their ways back to one another, both of them chastened and knowing what they really want in their lives.
Initially I thought that these two were in bed having this conversation - maybe not reading carefully enough and in the whole book that probably wouldn't be a question. But, when he says "you can send my stuff to my office..." that's pretty final for me. I do like this scene as I'm sure it propels Macey into the next step.
This is a good scene, entertaining (which somehow is not exactly the right word) but also one that does not present the breakup in a way that's unfamiliar or challenging. It's kind of the way I expect things to go. Can you shake up your idea of this scene?