SPOILERS: Nothing much. Really minor for Concertus Interruptus.
RATING: PG (one bad word :)
PAIRING: Tristan/Rory (or...Tristan wanting Rory)
SUMMARY: Tristan POV after Concertus Interruptus.
DISCLAIMER: The WB, Amy Sherman- Pallidino, and others own the characters. I just play here.

The Worst Part

by Rebecca Carefoot

The worst part is everyone knowing she doesn't want me. Even the teachers. It's just no good for my reputation people knowing I can't have her. It's embarrasing. It's not the way things should be. I know they talk about it behind my back, all of them. And even if they aren't talking, they're looking. Looking at me with the knowledge in their eyes, laughing. At times I think all I have is the image I present, and them knowing destroys that image. What am I, if I lose what I've tried to make people believe I am? What's left?

The worst part is her knowing. I think in the beginning she genuinely believed I just hated her, or that I got off on annoying her. Which I did, sort of. I don't think she saw that I had real feelings for her. She wouldn't let herself see. And there was a kind of safety in that. I could pretend there were reasons for her rejecting me other than her simply hating me, like her not understanding my feelings. And when she thought I was just annoying, she was more willing to argue with me, engage me, banter back and forth. Now the awkwardness she feels around me is obvious. Before, I could tell myself that her rejection hurt less if she didn't realize it hurt me. Now, I think about how pathetic I must seem to her. Yapping and snapping at her in my absurd way, wanting and not having. I wonder sometimes if she pities me, the loser who doesn't have the kind of happiness she has with her boyfriend. And I ask myself which is worse, her pity, her indifference or her hate.

The worst part is her not caring. Not giving me any more thought than a mosquito whining in her ear. She might pause to swat at me, but just barely.

The worst part is not being able to control myself. I pride myself on being able to control my emotions. It's all about control. Manipulation is controlling others. And it's easier to control others when you can control yourself. She makes me lose control. I sat in history class and stared at her. Even after Mrs. Caldecott noticed I was distracted, I couldn't stop staring. I *couldn't* stop. I tried. I literally could not turn my eyes away from her. She is so beautiful. The curve of the white shell of her ear, the soft straight length of her hair, the slope of her throat, her eyes so seriously turned to her notes. She gets under her skin, and I let her, or I can't stop her. The things I feel for her overwhelm me, confuse me. I hate it. And in a way I love it. Because it leaves me tingling and excited and scared and alive.

The worst part is being alone.

The worst part is losing the game. I hate losing. Hate, hate, hate it. I am not good at it. Sore loser or whatever. I can't stand it. It doesn't just piss me off, it makes me feel lost. Like I define myself or my place in the world by winning. Winning is who I am. Who I've turned myself into. And she takes that away.

The worst part is not being able to sleep. Even when I dream, I dream of her. But more often I lie there sweating and frustrated in my King sized bed. Lying there in the dark on the huge empty expanse of sheets. It makes me feel insignificant. She makes me feel that way. I can't concentrate. And the only thing that cuts through the exhaustion I feel after a sleepless night is her. She invigorates me. She exhausts me. She drives me to distraction.

The worst part is not having anyone to talk to about it. None of my friends would get it. If I talk about her at all in front of anyone else, I have to act like she's just a piece of ass. I have to pretend I don't care that she doesn't want me because I could have any other girl in the school. Never mind that I don't want any of them. Never mind.

The worst part is not knowing what to do. I've tried to figure it out. Some of those long, sleepless nights, I've thought about her and me and what I could do to make her see me. I don't know. I can't drop my image. I can't just show her the truth. I don't know how. I don't even know who I really am. And I'm too afraid to try to tell her, because what if I showed her everything and it didn't matter. What if she still didn't want me.

The worst part is being trapped.

The worst part is not being close to her. I want so much, more than anything to be close to her. I want to know her secrets, hear her jokes and complaints. I want to touch her hair. It hurts to look at her because I want her so much. But I can't look away.

The worst part is I think I'm in love with her.