hideous sweating

The Winner Takes It All

Calum Imagine

Summary: Calum is finally getting married but it doesn’t look like how you pictured it a year ago. You suppose that’s what happens when the winner takes it all.

A/N: This is really angsty so proceed if u like that sort of thing. I might do a part two if anyone wants but idk yet. Happy reading :)

~Approx 2.7k words~

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You were going to get drunk tonight. And not the fun drunk when you’re out with your friends seeing who can take the most shots of tequila without passing out. Tonight you were drinking your problems away, a problem that happened to be in the shape of a black calligraphy on beautiful cream colored paper.

Calum Thomas Hood, September the 7th, five o’clock.

Those were the words that stuck out to you and those were the words you were hoping would blur tonight as you held the bottle of vodka in your hand, the beautiful letter in the other as you sat in your bridesmaids dress on the floor of your kitchen.

“Don’t be silly, you’re like his best friend he would love to have you standing up there too!” His fiance, Jen, had gushed to you. You remembered spitting out your champagne the second she had asked you for your measurements. You felt bad for her. Clearly Calum hadn’t told you the elongated history between the two of you or she would have never even invited you to the wedding.

Holding the bottle to your lips you tried to pinpoint the exact moment  the man of your dreams had slipped through your fingers. The more you thought about it however, the more you realized it wasn’t really anybody’s fault and that quite frankly it was both of yours. You remember how it started. Ironically it had been at your best friend’s wedding three years ago. You remember how he had showed up late the the rehearsal dinner, rushing in with his head down as he hastily scurried to the seat next to yours.

You were paired up to walk down the aisle next to him, you clad in the teal maxi dress and him in his grey suit, both which corresponded to your friend’s wedding colors. He had whispered in your ear something about having forgotten to pick up his suit from the drycleaners and muttering how Michael had just wanted everyone to wear skinny jeans anyway but his wife to be wouldn’t stand for it. You had laughed, clutching onto his arm a little tighter out of fear that you would trip over the hem of your dress in front of all these people and ruin her wedding. But Calum had held you steady the entire way, his breathy voice telling you he would never let you fall. You suspect that had been the moment you fell in love with him, even though it had taken you another six months before you said it to him in the dead of night after you had spent the day in bed together with your phones switched off. You had been the first one to say it but the second the words fell from your lips he repeated them back to you and sealed it with a kiss. You had been inseparable for the year to come. Everyone could see it written all over your faces that you were two people in love. It was in the way he held you and kissed you that you knew he was the one for you.

You let out a small sob at the memory, bringing the bottle to your lips and tipping it all the way back. You were glad the thing was only half full when you snatched it from the shelf because you had no intention of putting it down tonight. Your tears dripped down your face in black streaks, landing in puddles on the ornate cardstock. It landed on her name, smudging the perfect writing and you couldn’t help but wipe your thumb over it and smudge it more. ‘Justice’ you thought.

How could this be happening? How could he be marrying someone who wasn’t you when just a year ago he had been talking like it was going to be only you for the rest of his life?

“You’re it for me baby you’re the one. I will never love anyone as much as I love you.” He had promised. You could hear the words ringing in your ears like a song you hadn’t listened to in years but the harmony was still etched in your mind. ‘You’re the one.”

Time had passed and created a lie out of his words and it had left you shattered. You remembered the day is was officially over. The argument had been coming for a long time. You wanted to settle down, get married maybe have a few kids eventually and find a house where you could be a proper family. It was something you had wanted for awhile now, a place to call home with him by your side. But that’s not what he wanted. He wasn’t finished living his glory days, he wasn’t ready to put a ring on your finger and settle down.

“We’re too young baby we don’t have to do that shit right now, that’s not us.”

“Well then what is ‘us’ if you don’t want to commit to our future?”

“We’re adventurers! We’re limitless, stop trying to organize everything into a little box.”

“And by everything you mean you? You don’t want a nagging wife to drag you down is that it?”
“That not what the fuck I said stop overreacting.”

“I’m just asking you to take our future seriously, what could be so bad about that?”

“It’s not what I want!”
“Is it me?” You’re voice was a hollow whisper now as you voiced your worst fear. “Is it just me you don’t want to commit to?”

“Baby that’s not it, you know that.”

“Do I?”

He let out a small gasp, his thick brows knitting in bewilderment that you would ever dare to question his love. You watched as his confusion turned to anger, his eyes darkening as he took a few steps away from you.

“Fuck you if you have to ask that.”

“Calum-”

“No, if you’re going to start doubting how much I love you because I don’t want to fucking get married that’s on you. But don’t blame me for your insecurities because that is not my fault.”

“Calum, stop just listen to what I’m saying!”

“No I’m done listening.” He growled, stomping over the the door and grabbing his jacket. You were frantic now, wondering if there was a double entendre behind his words.

“Where are you going?” You stood rooted to the spot, wanting desperately to run to him and beg him not the leave you, tell him that he were the best thing in your life and that you would reconsider everything and you didn’t need to marry him to be his but for whatever reason the words wouldn’t come.

“I’m going to get a fucking drink.” He grumbled, grabbing his pack of cigarettes and slamming the door behind him. You let out a sob, your hand flying to your mouth as you realized this might be the end.

“It’s just one fight, it’s just a fight, he’ll come back he always comes back.” You told yourself. But that night he didn’t come back. And the night after you slept by yourself still. He wouldn’t answer your calls, wouldn’t return your messages and no one would tell you where he was. You knew he was supposed to leave for tour again in a few days and you knew you knew you didn’t make up before he left the what you had really was over. You had called Michael, asking him when the flight left, waiting only to hear the gate number before you rushed to the airport, a suitcase of all your things in hand ready to follow him. You waited at the gate for him for what felt like an eternity, your heart pounding in your chest as tears threatened to fall down your face.When they gave the last call you felt your heart sink. He wasn’t here. He didn’t want to see you. It was over.

The wedding was today. You told yourself that today you wouldn’t cry. You weren’t going to be the girl that everyone felt sorry for. Not today. You held your head high as you helped Jen with her veil, situating it on her head for her. She really did look beautiful, and she looked happy. You hoped she made him happy. The rest of the bridesmaids were laughing and looking at the their friend with giddy smiled.

“Today’s your day!”
“Calum’s going to lose his mind when he sees you.”
“What a lucky guy.”
“You’re the most beautiful bride I’ve ever seen.”
They gushed, but to you it was all noise as they glided out of the waiting room and leaving you alone. You just had to get through today and then it was over. Calum had been avoiding you mostly. You had only seen him a few times, once at the rehearsal and a few times scattered in between.

It was a cruel joke, being a part of his wedding. The wedding he never wanted to have, or at least he never wanted to have with you. You tried not the be so bitter but it was hard when the entire thing was your dream but he was the one living it. You took a deep breath and pushed outside, ready to be the best bridesmaid you could be.

You didn’t expect to meet a pair of deep brown eyes staring at you the second you had accepted the facts though.

“Hi.” He said, sounding like he had just let out a breath.

“Hi.” You mustered up the strength to speak. “You look great.”

“Oh, yeah, thanks. So do you.” He gave you a small smile, your heart breaking as the corner of his lip turned upwards.

“Don’t lie to me, this dress is hideous.” You joked, gesturing to the fuchsia babydoll gown you had been forced into for today.

“I don’t think you could ever look hideous.”

You were sweating now, your nerves bubbling in the pit of your stomach as you looked at the beautiful man you had loved since the day you met him. “Well I’m certainly not as lovely as your bride. Jen is something else.” You muttered, refusing to meet his eyes.

“Y/N I’m so sorry I hurt you.” His words took you by surprise.

“I don’t want to talk about that.” You muttered, trying to step around him but he blocked you.

“No listen to me.” He took a step closer to you, his hand absentmindedly reaching out for you.

“I don’t want to.” You said again. “Haven’t you hurt me enough Cal? Can’t you just let me be? This is your wedding day afterall, it’s supposed to be the happiest day of your life.”

“Goddammit you stubborn woman!” He groaned, suddenly taking your face in his hands. “I never wanted to hurt you. I tried to come back to you but you were already gone and I’ve never stopped loving you since.”

“You never tried to come back you fucking liar.” You hissed, pulling yourself from his grasp. “I waited for you for days when you pulled your disappearing act and when you never showed I packed my things and followed you to the airport. But you never showed there either. Guess you were really trying to send me a message.” You laughed humorlessly. “Just stop lying about it.”

‘You were at the airport?” He whispered, a look of realization lighting up across his features.

“Yes and you weren’t, end of story. You won and I lost in winner takes all, now if you don’t mind I have to go help your wife with her train.”

“She’s not my wife.”
“Well she’s about to be so…” You trailed off.

“I came back to the house instead of going to the airport but you weren’t there. I thought you had packed your things and left me for good. I missed the flight that day and had to catch one at night. God, baby I was devastated for months.”

“Well you got over it pretty quickly I see.” You fought the tears threatening to spill. “Look Cal, I did everything I could to make you stay and you couldn’t even muster up a phone call. I played all my cards and I guess you did too, so if you would just leave me alone because I cannot take you standing here in front of me going over the most painful day of my life to me. There’s nothing more to say.”

“I love you.” His voice cracked at the confession and you gasped, finally meeting his gaze. His eyes were brimmed with tears, and not the kind you would expect from a groom on his wedding day.

“It’s too late for that now Cal.” You choked out, the words sounding fake even to your own ears. “The way this works is simple. You go get married and live your life and I’ll live mine. And I can’t complain, because I know I’ll figure it out someday with someone who wants what I want.”

“I do. I want you.” He said, his voice breaking as he reached for your hand and bringing them to his chest. “Do you feel this? It’s my heart and it’s beating for you. You’re all I’ve ever wanted.”

“Then why did you propose to her?”

“I don’t know call it a lapse in judgement, rehab for my broken heart. Me trying to not fuck something up for once. Typical that I fucked it up even more because now you won’t look at me like you used to.”

You closed your eyes, taking a deep breath as you tried to hold yourself back from breaking down in front of him.

“Calum stop making this so hard for me. Don’t you owe it to me to let me go peacefully. Just go get married and let me be.”

“Just tell me you love me.”

You scoffed. “Of course I love you, you must at least know that. And I know she does too.  I hope she kisses you like I used to.” You whispered.

“Baby no one can kiss me like you.” His lips were on yours in an instant, his hands on your cheeks and pulling you into him. He tasted the same way he did a year ago, like cinnamon gum and stale cigarettes. It was a taste that was so familiar on your tongue and you lavished in it now as his hand wrapped around your waist and pulled your body flush to his. You could feel his heartbeat beating faster as you wrapped your arms around his neck, the fabric of his tuxedo rough against your bare skin.

“I love you.” He whispered, leaning his forehead against yours. “I’ll call everything off. I’m yours if you’ll have me.”

“Cal.” You whispered uneasily. Kissing him felt so good and you wanted nothing more then to take him back, but things wee complicated now. He was about to pronounce his love to another girl in front of all their family and friends who were in fact all gathered in the next room. You couldn’t do it. You were too scared.

“I’ll give you everything you want. I’ll marry you today if it’s what you want. I love you.” He was pleading with you. It was all you had ever wanted for the past year happening right in front of you, but you knew your answer.

“We can’t. I can’t.”

“What?” He sounded broken as he took a step back from you, letting go of your hand like it had burned him. “Why?”

“We have to follow the rules. And the rules say that you’re getting married and it’s not to me. You made your choice and this is me making mine. You can go and get married knowing you made your peace with me and I’ll be fine. I’ll move on.”

“That’s not what I want.” He stuttered, his brows furrowing as if he wasn’t believing what was happening.

“What you want is history. I’m your past and she’s your future, that’s the end. Goodbye Cal.” You spoke solemnly, putting down your bouquet. You couldn’t go through with this. Not after he had spilled his heart to you, not after he had kissed you. You were sure no one would miss you anyways. Without another word you slipped by him and out the doors of the grand church, leaving your past, and him, far behind. 

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