had come to the conclusion that he had made a horrible mistake. this marriage he'd found himself in was nothing like he'd hoped. instead... well. he felt isolated in his own home. rachel was- to put it bluntly- a bitch. she'd shown him that as soon as she could, and he was just upset with himself. he'd known something was wrong in that desolate chapel, but he hadn't trusted himself. and now he was angry, but at himself, not at the woman he now found himself married to. he should have run. he'd been telling himself to. but he hadn't. and then she was there, and he couldn't. not when it was so desolate. the silence had pressed him into saying his vows far more effectively than any father with a shotgun pointed at his midsection could have.
and what did erik do when he was upset? he went to the gym. he swam. he looked through newspaper articles. but he didn't want to do that. he wanted to talk to someone. the black-and-white faces in the articles couldn't listen to him, and when he worked out, he pushed things far from his mind. so of course he had to see ryssa. she would actually be able to listen to him, make him feel better and would feed him. and he needed comfort food.
he'd left a note saying he'd gone to the gym. not that she'd check- it was courtesy that rachel really didn't deserve. but erik is still erik. he hasn't toughened up overnight, otherwise he'd likely have all his stuff in the car and be on the phone to the vow, saying that the match was a mistake. but he wasn't. he was just escaping for a little while, finding some breathing space.
he slowed, recognising ryssa's building and pulling into a parking space. he didn't exactly... care if people saw him. ryssa was his friend, and the only reason he'd care if they were in the rumour mill would be because it'd make her look bad. if he was lucky, a rumour might make rachel leave him. find someone else to be cruel to. out of the car, door locked, then into the buildings, climbing the stairs with a heavy tread, his hair being pushed from his face more than once. he'd had it cut, just before the wedding- the short back and sides still had that nice paintbrushy feel to them. he wore black, like he always did, his boots giving his outfit an oddly... menacing look. true, anyone who knew erik would likely laugh it off, but he was sure that, to some people, he looked like he was on his way to rob some apartments. if only that was the case. he'd be a properly tough guy if he was doing that, and he'd be able to tell his... wife
where to go. which would be as far from him as she could.
he knew he hadn't told ryssa he was coming, and she may well be in town or... wherever. but he had the feeling that she'd be inside. he took his time heading down the hall to her door, before knocking with a brisk motion that was, honestly, the opposite of how he felt. but how could you knock sadly
? it made no sense. he leant, back to the wall, next to the door, waiting to see if she'd answer. if she didn't, he'd have to call her. but if she was in... it'd be a welcome sight.
he twisted the black band around his finger absently, staring at the ceiling, waiting for the click of the door opening or the muffled thumps of footsteps. he didn't want to go home. he'd just sleep here if he could- go home and collect his stuff, then camp or something. he was sure ryssa would let him use her shower.