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Let Her Go

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Chapter 1

It had been a month-or-so since Chloe had thrown her lips against the other woman’s in a moment of one-sided passion. A month of Chloe’s lustful stares daydreaming in Elly’s direction every time she was in sight. A month of Elly carefully treading around Chloe’s feelings, trying to pretend it wasn’t happening so she could get on with planning her wedding to Chloe’s brother, Mark. It wasn’t that she didn’t want to bring it up more, it was just that the gripping fear of losing Chloe as a friend because of this was too scary to even think of.

Today was different though, today was the day Chloe had finally moved on and started to think of other people instead of her mind yelling ‘Elly, Elly, Elly.’ She’d met somebody new. A British woman who’d relocated to Melbourne only a week ago. Chloe had met her about three years ago whilst travelling and had connection with her immediately. Now they were living in the same city Chloe was sure things could go further and she couldn’t have been more excited about it. Katherine’s hair was a similar colour to Elly’s, only longer and straighter. Thinking of it make Chloe’s face light up and goosebumps pop up on her skin. The British woman was so well-spoken, a little bit posh with heaps of elegance. Chloe was sure Katherine was out of her league but since when had that ever stopped her from trying to get what she wanted.

A knock on the Brennan’s door caused Chloe’s feet to hurry over to answer it, surprised to see none-other than Elly stood there looking back at her.

“E-Elly!” A stutter collided with her bright and shining voice. Eyes that said she was both surprised and anxious, but still excited. “Uh, Mark’s at work, didn’t he tell you?”

“Oh actually I’m here to see you. Yeah, I thought we could go dress shopping or have a nice, girly day,” suggested Elly. “Sorry, I probably should have text you in advance,” the darker-haired woman added when she saw the expression that Chloe’s face held. It was a face that still contained various expressions, disappointment, surprise and a little awkwardness.

“Soz but… I actually have somewhere to be.”

“Oh sorry, I shouldn’t have just presumed you’d be available. Are you doing anything nice?”

“Actually I have a date. Her name’s Katherine… I met her on my travels. She’s British and she’s just moved to Melbourne so I couldn’t resist. She has the most gorgeous eyes I have ever seen. They’re like nut-brown but the colour is just-” She shut her mouth quickly, forcing herself to stop talking. “Hey, looks like I finally got over you. Told you I’d get there in the end.” When she looked back at Elly, Chloe noticed something in the corner of her eye that she hadn’t seen before. It was fine though, it was surely just disappointment that she wasn’t able to help Elly with the dress shopping. Elly obviously hadn’t expected Chloe to be busy for the first time ever.

“Oh… That’s….that’s no problem. We can just do it another day, plenty of time.” The brunette’s eyes lifted to look into Chloe’s, though she hadn’t meant for them to linger quite so long. Part of her knew she should just walk out of the door and leave with a quick ‘bye’ yet she’d instead stood in silence for a second and a half. “I guess I should go and let you get ready for your date,” Elly finally said.

“No!” Chloe objected a little too quickly. “I really need help choosing a dress for my date.” Throwing the front door shut before the other woman was able to react, Chloe grabbed Elly’s hand like an excited child and pulled her into her bedroom. On her bed laid two dressed, one red and the other black.

“Wow Chloe, they’re gorgeous,” Elly breathed out, flicking from one to the other and then looking back at Chloe. “I don’t know, it’s hard to choose.”

“I’ll try them on and then you can choose. Just…don’t mind me getting changed in front of you, isn’t like it’s not going to happen on your wedding day when we’re all rushing around anyway.” She bit down on her lip and paused for just a short, awkward moment. Sometimes she wished she was able to keep her thoughts in her mind instead of them all drowning out through her mouth. Elly nodded a little awkwardly. She tried to avoid Chloe’s feelings for her - which were apparently not there anymore - but sometimes it was difficult to differentiate between whether Chloe was just acting like a best friend or somebody who was crushing on her.

She watched as the younger woman began to get changed, though she wasn’t quite certain where to position her eyes. “I like your curtains,” she mentioned, as a distraction.

“Yeah, they’re pretty cool I guess.” Chloe pulled off her jeans and t-shirt, replacing it with a short, red dress. It was by far the shortest of the two, bright in colour and flared at the bottom. She smoothed her hands over it and gave a little twirl, full of energy. It was obvious in Chloe’s eyes how excited she was for this date. She hadn’t felt like this about anybody well…since Elly, only with Katherine it might be reciprocated. “What do you think?” she questioned, posing in the other woman’s direction. Elly’s eyes looked her up and down, a large smile growing on her face.

“I think you look very nice in it, Chloe. I think K- what was her name?”

“Katherine. Or Kate for short maybe, but I like Katherine.”

“I think Katherine will think you look beautiful in it.” Elly took a deep breath. “Actually, I think you should just go with that one. The black one might be a little much for a first date.” The older woman was probably right. It was very classy and not necessarily to Chloe’s usual style. But Katherine was classy and Chloe wanted nothing more to impress her.

“Ugh, you are a life saver!” Chloe exclaimed, leaping over to Elly and into her arms. It hadn’t meant to be a long hug, but Elly had gripped her in return and only moments later had either of them thought to release the embrace. The younger woman took a step back and let out a loud sigh. “I really appreciate it, Elly. I just really want to look my best for her because she always looks her best. Even when we’d been staying in a hostel for a week when we were travelling, she still looked like an actual Disney princess. I mean, it’s not fair really but if I can’t be her then at least I can be with her. Anyway, I’m rattling on again.” Elly coughed before nodding her head, trying to catch up with Chloe’s fast-talking.

“Chloe, you don’t have to worry about what you look like. You have the personality and the looks. Plus, you’re smart too. You’re a triple threat. She’s going to love you.” After a look into Chloe’s eyes again, Elly couldn’t help but jump forwards for another hug, quicker than the last but stronger, pulling their bodies closer. “I’m going to head off but you keep me updated. Text me as soon as you’re done, you know I’ll want all of the goss.”

“You’ll be the first one I call,” she agreed with a small laugh, waving her hand and allowing Elly to let herself out.