I've craved this opportunity for so long that I don't mind forking out the extra rent for a studio flat.
Now that I've finally bagged a serious job, it's time to have a place of my own as well. He'd always been jealous, but the further we grew apart, the more suffocating his possessiveness became.
Little did I know that my weekend job would inspire my future career.
But even then I guessed that my partner in crime would be a friend for life.
The water was freezing and I rushed to the surface, squealing. Reaching down to pull me up out of the water, he gripped me in his tanned arms and a wave of electricity ran between us.
I hadn't been wearing a bra and, as I clambered up to him, I realised my tiny knickers were see-through from the water.
If I went out without him I'd have to 'forget' my phone to avoid getting fifty arsey texts and having to reassure him that no, I hadn't danced with any guys, and yes, it was a crap night without him.
It got so bad that I stopped wanting to see my closest friends – even a night with Nicki would result in a fight.
To a stranger, it might look pathetic, but to me it's perfect.
A bed, two stacks of books and a bulging clothes rail make this half of the flat look overcrowded already.
A second hand sofa acts as a divide between the 'bedroom' and the 'kitchen', consisting of a coffee table, three deep purple floor cushions (borrowed from the café where I work) and a 1970s kitchenette that I can't wait to repaint.
Of course I felt self-conscious, but as his eyes flickered along my body, lingering on my hardened nipples, I almost forgot my embarrassment.
I wanted him to look at me, I felt like it was the first time that he'd really seen me.