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Chapter 1 The One With A Cheating Girlfriend and Childhood Memories

Life didn’t go his way. Anton sighed as he slumped on the bench at the waiting shed. His hiking backpack was finally put to use as he placed all of his belongings in one go. Regrettably, he left his bank card at his old apartment. His stomach growled profusely and the woman next to him looked at him with her judging eyes as she proceeded to scoot a bit farther from him.Â

He couldn’t blame her. He probably reeked of sweat and dirt since the last time he showered and Anton wasn’t sure to swallow his pride and beg his former teammates for a place to crash… or just a spare cash for food.

You could say, he’s homeless now. Two weeks after he left the apartment, he blocked all contacts from his friends and girlfriend.

Girlfriend, huh? He smiled grimly, wondering if that’s still a thing. It was supposed to be a surprise. He decided to cancel his trip with Eric to Thailand just so he could spend more time with her instead.Â

But then, he caught her sleeping with Victor, the new Running Back in their team. Victor took his position in the football team and his girl. He could probably take his identity if he had to.Â

His phone rang and he glanced at the caller. He smiled for the first time in two weeks. He answered and he couldn’t stop himself from grinning. “Eric!” That startled the nearby passersby as the woman next to him finally stood up and scurried away from him. But he didn’t care. He was so happy to hear Eric’s voice.Â

“Geez, do you have to be so loud? My roommate almost had a heart attack!” He heard Eric mutter in another language as he said that.Â

Oh right, Eric is in Thailand. He’s rooming with another person (probably a local from Thailand) instead of him.Â

“Well, you called so I’ve never felt happier,” Anton grinned. Eric is one of his childhood friends. In fact, he’s the only friend whom he’s completely opposite to: Eric was more of an introvert and enjoys programming, Anton on the other hand didn’t understand the concept of it yet he didn’t mind about Eric’s enthusiasm towards his work. Nevertheless, despite their clashing personalities, Eric is the man he could always confide in for anything if he allowed him to.

“Sounds like you’re in some sort of shit,” he heard Eric sighed. “Melissa called me to check on you.”

“She did, huh?” Anton frowned. Funny that she even cared.

“Well, you know that we don’t get along and she called me about you and that’s saying something.”

“I just left the house. You can say we broke up for good.”

There was a pause before he asked, “For real?”

“Remember Victor?” He didn’t wait for Eric to reply before he continued, “He was that nice newbie who replaced me as the team’s runningback. Well, I saw him with Melissa right after I cancelled out on you. My mind became numb and well…God, Eric. I wished I’d gone with you then!”

 He remembered clearly how one day he went to their apartment as a surprise and only to find Melissa and Victor naked in the kitchen counter. He didn’t say a word as he ignored Melissa’s pleas while his hands were busy packing up his things. He couldn’t remember what she was saying then. He just didn’t want to snap at and face the reality that they weren’t together anymore.

“And what? Dating a two-timer as if nothing happened? Anton, you were about to propose to her on her birthday.”Â

“Yeah, thank God I didn’t buy that fancy ring yet, huh?” He smiled, wryly.Â


No response on the other line.Â


“Where are you staying at the moment?”

“Well, the thing is…I lost my job the very next day after leaving the apartment. I knew that the agency won’t last long but talk about timing, huh?” He gave an awkward laugh. “I was hoping to stay at your place while finding a job, if you don’t mind.”

“As much as I am willing to give you a place to stay, I’m afraid it’s impossible,” he sighed. “I haven’t told you yet, but the landlord called a week before my departure that the building will be demolished. All of my stuff is in the storage now.”

“Oh.” What a bummer. He didn’t know what to say after that.

“Can’t you go back to your folks? At least wait until I’m back?”

“I can’t, Eric. I’m too ashamed to face my ma and pa.” Besides, his parents are too busy taking care of his five other siblings. He couldn’t dare tell them that he lost his scholarship after a small accident and started working as a real estate agent right after. “It’s the last thing I do if worse comes to worst.”

“Well, knowing you, you’ll never go back if only there’s another friend of ours in—,” he paused for a while, like an idea came to a realization.


“Is it possible? Maybe it’s for the best,” he muttered. Anton could hear the tapping sounds. Most likely he’s searching on his laptop.


 “Ah, found it. There’s a way for you to solve this. I just sent you the location. I believe it’s not that far from the university.”

“Uhm, you lost me there, man.” What was Eric trying to do? There was a beep and he looked at his phone to see a GPS location. He clicked on it to see a jewelry store he had never seen before. “Maiden’s Rose Jewelry?”

“I went there to buy a ring for my grandma and guess what? I saw Fin there.”

“F-Fin?” Fin, that Fin? Fin whom he made a promise to go pro in the NFL. Fin who is in every shape and form better than him in football and  Fin whom he lost contact with for years. That Fin…

He’s back.

“Why didn’t you tell me?”Â

“I thought it didn’t matter to you anymore, that’s why I didn’t bring it up.”Â

“No! It still matters to me! I, I have to go, Eric. I need to see Fin! Thanks!”

“W-wait, Anton! Fin is—!”

He hung up the phone as he grabbed his only bag before heading to where the location is at. He could apologize to Eric later.Â

He could feel his stomach churning loudly again and his body numbed from fatigue. But he didn’t care.Â

 His hunger and weariness could wait, after all Fin is back.

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