“I’m so tired!” yawned Tim, giving Marc a quick hug before sitting down opposite him at the table. The Bach was busy - all tables full with noisy chatter.
“Big night last night?” asked Marc, quickly studying the menu as he decided what to order.
“Hardly!” laughed Tim. “We started watching that new series Sex Education and got a bit obsessed. I think we watched four episodes back-to-back.”
“I don’t know it?” said Marc. “Netflix?”
“Yeah, I hadn’t heard much about it…” nodded Tim. “I think they’ve just released it or something. It’s really good!”
“Drama?” asked Marc.
“No, comedy…” said Tim. “It’s got Gillian Anderson in it. She plays a sex therapist, and her son starts offering sex therapy sessions at school. Definitely worth watching - it’s funny and filthy and really well written. They handle all the gay stuff really smartly. Even Mikael liked it!”
“Where is he, anyway?” asked Marc.
“Still in bed…” shrugged Tim. “To be honest, I didn’t really want him to come - I was happy to leave him sleeping.”
“Black coffee and the eggs benedict…” said Marc, as the waitress stopped at their table to take their order.
“I’ll have the same…” added Tim.
“What’s going on?” asked Marc. “Is everything okay?”
“I don’t know…” shrugged Tim. “The New York trip over Christmas was good, but I’ve come back feeling like I need to make some decisions.”
“About you and Mikael?” asked Marc.
“Pretty much…” nodded Tim. “I’m just starting to feel that it’s time that we went in separate directions.”
“You don’t think that it was just the stress of the whole Gatwick drama?” suggested Marc. “You had a pretty rocky start to the trip - that’s going to test any relationship!”
“Totally…” agreed Tim. “It definitely got everything off on the wrong foot, but it was more than that. I still love him, obviously, but I just can’t help feeling that I’m making a lot of compromises all of the time. I feel like I’m losing who I am and not really getting that much out of the relationship anymore.”
“Have you tried talking to him at all?” asked Marc. “Have you been dropping any hints that you’re not super-happy with where things are at?”
“Well, I feel like I’ve been dropping hints…” replied Tim. “But my passive-aggressive communication style is never particularly effective. I think I need to ask him to move out.”
“For real?” gasped Marc. “I had no idea that things were so rocky!”
“I guess I’ve just been trying to ignore what I’ve been feeling for a while…” shrugged Tim. “But, spending Christmas together in New York should have been a really magical time, but it wasn’t. It just wasn’t.”
“Have you thought about going to couples counselling?” suggested Marc.
“God, no…” laughed Tim. “It’s funny when Gillian Anderson does it, but I can’t imagine anything worse! I’d much rather push all of my emotions down and drink away the pain. That’s my kind of sex therapy.”