Afterthoughts~A Midsemester Night's Dream

Written by Isa

Set after "A Midsemester Night's Dream"

Julia swung her arm around in the dark. Ned didn't seem to care about anything but finding the hook to her bra, but she was interested in finding a light. She knocked his alarm clock and a glass, which broke, down before she found the lamp. She fumbled for the switch and turned it, but remained in darkness.


"There's no bulb." he kept right on kissing her neck and trying to undress her.

She pushed his hands off her body. "Let's take a time out."

"What's wrong?"

She sat up and took a couple deep breaths. She felt the need to stand up and jump around to cool off, but resisted it. "I just, uh, I can't do this."

"WHAT?" Ned seemed almost angry.

"I can't......keep trying to act like a single woman. Because I'm not single."

"Not technically, no. There's that whole I-got-married-too-young-and-then- he-cheated-and-we're-seperating-thing. I'm cool with it."

"We're not seperated."

"You told me you were." his eyes were cold.

"No, what I said was that we were seperated because he's there and I'm here. But, when I think about it, I still--"

"I thought your marriage was over."

"It was. I mean, I thought it was. I don't know what I mean. But I still love him."

"I....that's good."

"What? Why is that good?" Julia was getting annoyed.

"I don't know...."

"Do you love Maggie?"

"I loved Maggie the minute I saw her."

"Do you still?"

"I....I told her I do."

"At the party."

"Yes, but I swear to God, I thought she was you."

"I tried to tell you."

"I couldn't tell that your voice was coming from across the room and not the mask."

"So now what?"

"You tell me."


"I mean you just show up here in the middle of the night and you--"

"I have to stop."

"Stop what? We haven't done anything."

"We were about to. I have to stop pretending that I can just see you and be okay with it. I'm not and I can't."

"Then why did you come here?"

Julia stammered. "I don't know."

"Eeeh! Try again."

"I love it here. The campus. The classes, the schoolwork, even Maggie. I love everything that Stanford has to offer, but I love Griffin too, and I can't have both."

"And you came to my room at three am because??"

"I guess I just needed to test myself. To see if I was really ready to move on, which I'm not, and I'm sorry that you had to get in the middle of the war I was having with myself. But you know somethin' Ned? Go back to Maggie."


"Go back to her, because you two belong together."

Ned just stood there shaking his head.

"I've gotta go." Julia left the room without thinking about it. She needed to get away from all the things clogging her mind and just think. Almost automatically, she walked across campus to her car and fumbled under the front bumper for her emergency key. She found it, let herself in, and headed for home.

Claudia sat up in her bed, crying. She hoped none of the other girls heard her as she weeped. She missed Jamie, she missed her house, she even missed Charlie and his yelling at her. She wanted to go home, but she knew that if she went back, she'd miss her school and her friends there. Either way, she lost something. She reached under her bed and grabbed her journal. She wiped tears from her eyes and wrote.

"'Each loss is a gain.' Someone famous said that. They're right, but they forgot to end the statement. 'Each gain is a loss.'"

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