He walked her downstairs and opened the door for her. They looked at each other not knowing how to end the interaction. He extended his arms for a hug as she leans in for a kiss. The two of them end the goodbye quickly and he shut the door behind her.
They "matched" on Tinder weeks ago, but had met in person before that. They had class together, mutual friends, and attended the same parties. But their friendship never blossomed into anything more than acquaintances. That is, until they "matched" on Tinder. He reached out to her first, with a simple "haha hey." They started talking more and eventually a connection started forming. Their interactions extnded into other platforms, first Facebook, and then texting.
Then, the sex. Drunken sex after a party. It was electric. Unlike anything they had experienced with different partners. The sex continued. As did their non-sexual interactions. They began sharing secrets and opening up about the wounds everyone had but ultimately don't talk about out of fear of feeling vulnerable.
He couldn't stop thinking about her. The thoughts of her beautiful smile, bright blue eyes and freckled cheeks would bring a smile to his face. He'd never felt this way before. He wore his emotions on his sleeve. He turned to her for emotional support.
She, not expecting to fall for him, did. At the beginning of their fling, that's all she wanted. She didn't like him. Just what he did for her. His openness softened her hard exterior. She confided in him, as he did with her. This went from sex to a relationship without any acknowledgement.
And he messed it up...
She asked for a more official commitment and he agonized over it. He chose another woman. Any woman. He chose the possibly of more women, instead of the one he loved.
Then he slept with another woman. This one meaningless, no connection. No feelings. Only sadness, self-pity and alcohol. The sexual encounter was stupid. He regretted it as it was happening.
And then the first woman heard about the second. That was the worst night of his life. He cried for hours. He hated himself and still does. It's his biggest regret in his adult life. But it's too late.
She's moved on. She's happy. And he still thinks about his mistake every single day wondering if they could still have a future, but is too petrified to try.