ɪᴍᴀɢᴇs ᴏғ ᴛʜᴇ ᴘᴀsᴛ

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[center [font "Bookman" Romantic. If that was how people wanted to call it. There was nothing romantic about a man who couldn't take no for an answer. Kai was persistent. Far too much for her taste, but their first date was a simple one a moonlight dinner on the patio of one of the hotels he owned. It wasn't too simple, but it was the simplest date she had with him. She just assumed he wanted to impress her on the first date, but then it just continued to get fancier with each date.

Kai's form of romance was different than Spencer's.Spence was simple. He would cook her dishes, wrap her in blankets and cuddle when she was feeling bad. They'd even lay beside each other and cuddle, talk for hours about their day. Kai's was always too busy for that. The simple things. Marisol cooked, cleaned, and when he'd come home their conversations we're cut short. It's not that they never had time for one another. Kai would always make an effort, he just… wasn't Spencer.

And that made all the difference. Even before seeing his face again, Spencer's affection was something she always preferred compared to anyone who tried. [right [pic https://i.imgur.com/7W0AY7C.jpg]]

Marisol pulled her hands back, wrapping them around the warm cup of coffee. It was still hot and he drank it anyway. Mar shook her head. "You're going to burn your insides if you keep drinking like that." She pulled the drink close and stood up from the chair.

"Let's go then." The sooner they did this, the quicker they'd be done for the say. And the less his face would haunt her for the night.
  ᴍᴀʀ / RecklessDreamer / 111d 14m 47s
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/YGwjVY3.jpg]] [center [font "Times New Roman" Part of him wished she wouldn't look at him like that. When she agreed to the gardens, he nodded firmly and took a drink of his coffee, not even caring that it hasn't cooled enough to probably be safe for his mouth. He was constantly doing that, and he remembered when she used to tease him for it and he had to break eye contact.

[#1b1c4a [b "Sounds romantic."]] he murmured after hearing the story of how they met. Spencer had always been the quiet romantic type. He wasn't very hearts and Flowers romantic, but he was the kind of guy to remember every little detail, and make you foods from your childhood or correlate a memory that meant a lot into a simple gesture.

[#1b1c4a [b "I have a few ideas, so if you don't have any big plans, we can head out after you're done and ready."]] he suggested, taking another long drink of the sugary caffeine.

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/BnDZbry.jpg]] being said kind of romantic, and given charge of the photos, he would be sure that if he couldn't give her a ring- even if he had one for her, she was marrying someone else- he would give her the perfect wedding pictures. Something she could look back on for years to come, show their kids, and... Well, he had to cut that thought off there when his chest got tight.
[center [font "Bookman" Marisol followed his gaze down to the ring. It wasn't her at all. She was sure he was aware of that. He did know her rather well and although the seasons changed, Marisol never did. She would have rathered something smaller, a little less flashy and simple. But who was she to complain. The ring was a gift that [i he] felt suited her. Though, in her eyes, it didn't.

To be frank, she would have loved the entire wedding and photos to be minimal. Something that showed how they met, a representation of their relationship. But her relationship with Kai was anything but simple or minimal. It was flashy, expensive, a lavished lifestyle. And that was what Kai wanted, beautiful pictures that made their relationship and the ring, pop.

"The public gardens are fine. We were supposed to have couple pictures. Shots together, hand holding and what not. That's what he wanted." But without him, none of that would work. Marisol took a deep breath. She laid her hand on the flat surface. A barrier that she was glad stood between them, keeping them at a distance. [right [pic https://i.imgur.com/7W0AY7C.jpg]]

"As for our meeting." She kept her attention on the ring. "He was one of my first patients at Foreman's Hospital. He tired… and after a few denials, I agreed to a date. He was persistent, went for what he wanted… and two years later, here we are. I'm sure you'd rather not hear all the details."

Mar glanced up from her hand to his face once again. "I trust you, as a professional to decide what's best for these photos. I'll follow your lead."
  ᴍᴀʀ / RecklessDreamer / 111d 2h 39m 15s
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/YGwjVY3.jpg]] [center [font "Times New Roman" And just like that, it seemed that Malikai was gone. He looked after him as he ran off. So he owned some hotels. That made sense. It didn't make sense that he would have to take off like that. Hotels were supposed to have staff that dealt with pretty well everything, didn't they? He wasn't going to linger on it though, instead turning his attention to Mar again.

[#1b1c4a [b "The ring. Sure."]] he put away the money that the [i fiance] had pushed into his hand and sat across from her now, doing his best to switch his brain to business mode as he looked at her ring for the first time. It was... a bit much, in his opinion. Not very her. More like a display of status. But who was he to judge when he didn't give her one in the first place.

[#1b1c4a [b "What are you thinking, for the pictures? Something minimalist? We could also go to the public gardens and get some shots with the flowers, or... you could tell me a bit about how you met and we can come up with something a bit more meaningful."]] Mar had always been the type of girl to do something because it [i meant] something.

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/BnDZbry.jpg]] As much as he really didn't want to hear their story, he would listen. For her. He would do just about anything for her, even now. [i Except give her the one thing she wanted.] But even she didn't know the full story there. He never talked about his family, and he definitely wasn't going to tell her about his thoughts leading up to the last day of their relationship.
[center [font "Bookman" Bills, yes of course there was that. Still the fact remained, he didn’t do weddings. And this job Malikai wanted for him, was a lot of work and required a lot of time. Kai wanted every moment captured. That only meant one thing, Spencer would be around for all of it. Marisol would have no choice, but to spend ever moment she was meant to cherish with Kai alongside someone she once spent what seemed to be another lifetime with.

“No, no. Spence. It’s fine.” The job paid well, who was she to force him to drop a great deal just because they had history? It was fine, they could work through it. This was strictly professional and she was getting married.

Her eyes shifted noticing Kai return. She smiled as he slid the coffee cups in front of them. Though, he didn’t look at her, instead his attention was on Spencer. “I’m sorry to do this to you, but I actually have to head out. There’s a problem going on at one of the hotels and they want me to come in.”

“I thought you told them you wouldn’t be available today?” Marisol rubbed her arm gently, a nervous habit she still hoped to get rid of.

“I know, but it’s important.” He turned to her with a soft smile. I’ll make it up to you. I promise.” He leaned over, pressing his lips to her cheek. “In the meantime, you get things started with the man.” [right [pic https://i.imgur.com/7W0AY7C.jpg]]

He turned his attention back to Spencer. Handing him a few hundred bills. “I was planning to pay you at the end of each session, but things come up. Marisol will keep things going.”

With that she watched her fiancé leave once more. Work was first, always. Sometimes she wondered why he even asked if he planned to be away all the time. Then again, her job caused her to be away from him as well… just not as much. She sighed softly, looking back to Spencer. Professional… she had to remind herself to be professional. “He wanted to get pictures of the ring done today. So, I guess… we can start on that.”
  ᴍᴀʀ / RecklessDreamer / 111d 6h 9m 29s
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/YGwjVY3.jpg]] [center [font "Times New Roman" [i Jesus Christ]. She made eye contact and it was like the floor dropped out from under him. He got lost in her eyes every time they made eye contact, and this was no exception. The only difference was now he couldnt pull her across the table, hook his hand at the back of her neck, fingers in her hair and just-

His mind was wandering and he had to bring it back to register her question with a blink.

[#1b1c4a [b "I don't... Generally. Still, gotta pay the bills, right?]] he confirmed, feeling suddenly very tired. This job was probably going to be hell on him- Maliki had mentioned in the email that he wanted pictures of everything- cake tasting, dress fitting, rehearsal dinner, etc. All of the things he could have been doing with Marisol if he wasn't such a coward.

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/BnDZbry.jpg]] [#1b1c4a [b "... I can find another job, Mars. If this... If it'll be too weird."]] He wasn't even entirely sure it wouldn't be too weird for him to do it, but he couldn't pass up an opportunity to be that close to her. It would be fucking stupid. He felt like an idiot for running away on the first place, and he wasn't about to do it now. He could prove that he had moved on, right? That's funny. You probably have to actually move on to do that.
[center [font "Bookman" There she was, left alone with the man she was sure she’d never see again. The man who could have been in Kai’s shoes. The man who... who couldn’t commit. The man who left her.

Her eyes were glued to his face, in particular his nose. She was afraid to look him in the eyes, afraid that he would be able to see the mixed emotions she held at the moment. Afraid that she would be able to pull away from them even if she tried.

Malikai was nice, but she could see just how uncomfortable Spencer was. Her name dripped from his lips like sweet nectar, a familiar tasteful sound that soothes her being. But, her bitter heart reminded her, it could have been him. She could have been marrying him. But she refused to let those bitter words escape her lips. “Thanks Spence.”

Silence settled between them. Her eyes drifting past him, hoping Kai would return soon. She glanced back at Spencer, but her eyes traveled to his and she was caught.

“I-I thought you didn’t do weddings.” The words managed to escape her lips.
  ᴍᴀʀ / RecklessDreamer / 111d 14h 33m 40s
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/YGwjVY3.jpg]] [center [font "Times New Roman" Spencer tried not to pass judgements. No really, he did. He was a nice guy, as far as general interactions went, but he couldn't help thinking that this Malikai guy seemed a little... pretentious for Marisol. Hell, he called her [i Marisol], no nicknames no nothing. He could only count a handful of times he had called her by her full name. The bitter comment lodged itself at the back of his mind.

At least he was polite. He wasn't the guy who got pissed off by coffee on his stupidly expensive shoes. Spencer honestly wasn't sure if that was better or worse. He was either actually that laid back, or he had enough money to burn that the shoes that could buy him food for a month were nothing to him. [i No. No passing judgement.]

He struggled for a moment to remember his order, and rattled it off to Malikai, watching him walk away... and then it was just the two of them. Him, and the girl he never thought he would be seeing again, let alone doing fucking [i business] with her for her [i wedding]. Without him. He swallowed hard, cleaning up the last of the coffee from his shoes and standing behind the chair across from Marisol, clutched to his camera now.

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/BnDZbry.jpg]] [#1b1c4a [b "... He seems nice."]] he murmured, unable to look away from her face. The one that still haunted his dreams, the one that he had memorized over years of a relationship, the one that he... he loved. Still. [#1b1c4a [b "I didn't know you were getting married... Congrats, Mar. Really."]] He shifted a bit, moving his camera to sit it on the table, biting his tongue to keep from saying anything else.
[center [font "Bookman" Ever since Marisol could remember, she wanted to get married. To some, it was a silly paper that meant nothing or a ring that blinded others, but to her marriage was a statement of love. To become one in life. And at the first chance to get married, the words yes slipped from her mouth.

Malikai wasn’t her first choice. In fact, he was never a plan she had in mind. He was just a man who laid in a hospital bed three years ago and snuck his way into her life. He was a wonderful man. Polite, sweet, generous, but he was so focused on his business. This entire wedding felt rushed, but this was what she wanted. To be married… just… he wasn’t the one she originally wanted to spend her life with.

But life gave her a second chance at love and Marisol took it without doing anything. She always let Malikai — Kai as he was known by, decide where it would go and… he wanted to get married.

And he wanted a photographer, a specific one. Marisol didn’t know who the man was, but they were set to meet him in a Coffee shop in downtown.

Her eyes were glued to a Nursing Diagnosis Manual she held in front of her. She was so preoccupied; she hadn’t noticed the man in front of them until she noticed a hand extend to her fiancé.

Marisol’s eyes shifted from the book to the man in front of them. Her eyes widened at the sight of him, holding the book tight against her chest. She kept quiet, staring as the coffee slipped from his fingertips.

Kai waved the man off. “Don’t worry about it. Accidents happen. I’m Malikai Hyde and this is my fiancée Marisol.”

She watched Kai bend down and clean off his own shoes. For a man with money, Malikai was laid back compared to most men who came into power. He was the CEO of Aphrodite’s hotels and resorts, passed down by his father. But he could have passed off as just a simple hotel manager. [right [pic https://i.imgur.com/2xm0X1y.jpg]]

“I-I’ll go get you another,” Marisol spoke softly, though Malikai stepped behind her and sat her down at the table.

“I’ll get us all some coffee and you can start telling him our wedding plans.” Malikai pressed a kiss to her cheek, before looking to the photographer. “Please sit down, don’t worry about the coffee. What kind was it?”]
  ᴍᴀʀ / RecklessDreamer / 111d 15h 47m 9s
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/YGwjVY3.jpg]] [center [font "Times New Roman" To say that life had been hard the past few years would be an understatement. This was like going back to black and white after you finally get to know what technicolor was like. It was like a thousand days of sun when all you're craving is the rain. Life just... [i lacked] without Marisol in it, and it was something that Spencer was slowly coming to terms with. After four years, at least waking up without her felt like routine now.

The redhead dragged himself from bed, rubbing the sleep from blue eyes with an exaggerated stretch, with some hope of working the kink out of his back. It had been an ongoing problem since his older brother had pushed him into the dresser's edge when he was 10, and every morning he hoped in vain that it would just... [i go away]. With no luck to be spoken for, he limped his way to the kitchen to turn on the coffee pot and hopped in a hot shower that would relax his muscles enough to get through the day... which was good, because he had a meeting today.

Marriage was always a tricky topic for him. After losing Marisol because of her ultimatum, he didn't even want to think about it anymore, but... photography jobs in this city were harder to come by this season, unless you wanted to do weddings, and rent wasn't going to pay itself. After his shower and breakfast, he dressed himself and took a look in the mirror.

The simple grey sweater and black slacks worked for him. Made him look like he was some kind of smart- and admittedly he was. He was very smart. He was probably due for a shave sometime in the next few days, but he didn't have time. He would have to hop a bus downtown in a few minutes.

Coffee seemed to be a constant theme of the day, as he was meeting the couple in a Coffee Culture in the middle of the downtown area. He ordered his drink before he went to find the couple. They weren't that hard to spot- the bride appeared to be pouring over some kind of book, but the man waved him over, and he put on his best smile as he stood to greet him. He offered out his hand, but his heart stopped when it seemed to catch the woman's attention and she looked up.

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/BnDZbry.jpg]] In fact, it shocked him so much that said saccharine coffee confection slipped from his hands and fell onto the floor between the photographer and the groom, spilling over both of their shoes.

[#1b1c4a [b "Fuck-"]] he stopped himself after the curse, and grabbed from the napkins in the middle of the table. [#1b1c4a [b "God, I am so sorry."]] Those shoes didn't look cheap either.

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