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Here's To Another Year - Chapter Three
Published Aug 31, 2013


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Written By

Elizabethfaith21

Storyteller
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Here it is, Chapter Three. I want to thank all of you that have been continuously reading my story. I’m beginning to realize that they are mostly filled with writing and not so much pictures. So, I’m sorry for all of you out there that enjoy the photos a bit more. I enjoy telling stories and I sort of lose myself in them at times. So what was at one point supposed to be a little bit of writing on one page, suddenly turns into a few paragraphs lol.
I appreciate the wonderful comments you’ve left, and the encouragement keeps me going. If you’d also like to rate, I’d strongly appreciate it as well. Thank you for reading, and please enjoy :)
P.S. I’d like to give a HUGE thank you to all of you CC creators. People like me wouldn’t be able to do what I do without you. You’re some of the most creative people in the simming community and all that you do does not go unappreciated.

Here it is, Chapter Three. I want to thank all of you that have been continuously reading my story. I’m beginning to realize that they are mostly filled with writing and not so much pictures. So, I’m sorry for all of you out there that enjoy the photos a bit more. I enjoy telling stories and I sort of lose myself in them at times. So what was at one point supposed to be a little bit of writing on one page, suddenly turns into a few paragraphs lol.
I appreciate the wonderful comments you’ve left, and the encouragement keeps me going. If you’d also like to rate, I’d strongly appreciate it as well. Thank you for reading, and please enjoy :)
P.S. I’d like to give a HUGE thank you to all of you CC creators. People like me wouldn’t be able to do what I do without you. You’re some of the most creative people in the simming community and all that you do does not go unappreciated.
... Hanleigh’s life was expanding, along with her belly. It was just weeks after Topher had asked her to move in with him. She of course said yes.
The two leased a small townhouse in an older part of New Cambridge, well suited for their growing family.
“Finished just in time to leave again.” Hanleigh wrapped her arms around Topher’s neck, giving him a quick peck on the lips.
“Well, not quite finished. We still need to paint the baby’s room.”Topher caressed his lover’s belly with his right hand. He remembered how his heart pounded when he heard the ultrasound technician point out the small head and tiny little limbs of the unborn child that grew.
Hanleigh placed her hand on his, smiling.
“Has Flor texted you yet?” Topher asked, searching the room for anything he might have forgotten.
Hanleigh glanced down at her cell, checking the lock screen.
“Nope, nothing. Are you sure we have everything we need?” She asked.
“Well, it’s one night. If we forgot anything, It’s obviously not too important.” He shrugged. Hanleigh nodded in return.

There were two knocks before the door opened behind them.
“Hey guys, sorry I’m late-ish. My phone died and I had no way of getting ahold of you.” Florence apologized, stretching the truth. Her phone hadn’t really died, you see. After being stupid enough to kiss Jance just weeks before, she’d hardly heard from him. She’d been dying to see him and to hear from him. And it killed her. Why should she care about him if he was only going to use her and never speak to her again? This had caused her a great sadness and she’d been doing her best to avoid it by mostly sleeping. Just as she was fifteen minutes earlier.
“Are you okay? You look a bit flushed.” Hanleigh stared at her friend in concern. It was noticeable. Her words stung Florence like a rabid hornet.
“Well you look a bit large.” She quipped in reponse, “And I’m fine. Let’s get going or we’re gonna be late. This place is forever away.”
There was something wrong with her friend that she wasn’t being told, and Hanleigh couldn’t help but feel hurt. Why wasn’t Florence talking to her about it?
Topher sensed tension and did his best to avoid it by grabbing their luggage and rushing out to Florence’s car.
“What’s going on?” Hanleigh asked softly, blocking the sun from her eyes. Florence’s heart sank in her chest. She wanted to talk to her best friend but was far too embarrassed
Topher pulled the handle on the gate of her SUV, failing to open it. Florence glanced over to see what he was doing.
“I’ll get it, Toph. Has to be opened manually.” She waved him off. Topher walked over to the side of the car, opened the door, and got in.
“Nothing’s going on, okay? I’m fine. My phone just died and I’m ready to leave.” Florence grabbed the car keys from her pocket, clinking them around to find the right one. Hanleigh searched her expression. She was lying.
“You’re not telling the truth, but whatever. You know I’m here when you’re ready to talk.” She said, forcing back the front of her scarlet hair as it ran through her porcelain fingers.
Florence opened the gate, and shoved their luggage in with hers. She wished Hanny would stop trying to force things out of her. Why couldn’t she just suffer in silence?
She slammed the door shut, and got into the driver’s seat.
“Would you mind pulling up the GPS app on your phone?” Florence glanced over to her pregnant passenger, “It’s a long way out and I really don’t want to get lost.”
Hanleigh grabbed her phone, pin pointing the location they desired.
“So what’s the name of this town, anyway?” Topher asked from the backseat.
“Jaquesvile.” Hanleigh returned. He made a face.
“I’ve lived in this state my entire life and I’ve not once heard of that town.” He chuckled.
“It’s on the state border, so you probably wouldn’t, city boy.” Florence chimed in, half smiling in the rear view mirror, “Lots of Amish.”
Topher’s eyes grew.
“Nuh uh…” Hanleigh stared in curiosity.
“Yeah huh.” Florence returned, “ But we probably won’t see. Bryce said his parent’s house is in a pretty desolate area. We would have to go pretty out of our way to some clustered farmhouses to see any.”
Hanleigh looked out the car window in wonder.
“Any. You make them sound like zoo animals.” Topher joked. Florence stuck her tongue out like a small child.
“I actually remember seeing some at a zoo once, when I was about twelve.” Hanleigh began, “ My foster parents at the time took a few of us on one of the hottest days of the summer. And I remember thinking to myself that it must get so frustrating having to wear those stuffy shirts and dresses all day long.” She smiled at the thought of one of her more pleasant childhood memories.
“Ugh, you’re making me sweat just thinking about it.” Florence winced, rolling down the car window to let the oncoming fall breeze flow.
Two hours, and several pointless conversations later, they arrived in the small country town of Jaquesville. There were leaves of gold, vermilion, pumpkin, amber, chestnut, and rosewood. The scent of Autumn filled the air.
“Man, you really don’t understand the season you’re in until you hit the country, huh?” Topher leaned back into his seat, taking in the beautiful scenery.
“We close yet, Han?” Florence asked.
“Almost there. Just keep going down this road.” She responded, noticing the dirt from the road filling the car. Hanleigh let out a cough and pressed a button on the car door, causing the window to roll up.
... Florence drove her car down the dirt path until she reached the end. There was a large red barn, surrounded by hay, flowers, and vehicles.
The three opened their doors and slid out of their seats, giving a large stretch. Flor unlocked her trunk and opened it up. Topher grabbed their luggage, placing it on the dusty ground, and slammed the car’s rear shut once more.
“Look at this place.” Hanleigh smiled, “It’s so gorgeous.”
Florence let out a large sneeze.
“I really hope that’s not allergies.” Topher laughed. Florence did her best to ignore the comment and sneezed again into her sleeve.
“Ugh..” She whined.
Bryce’s father, Charles, was finishing up on the barbeque when the three arrived. He was a kind man with a strong worth ethic. And Bryce was his only son. He did all he could to be the man that his own father was. The country was where his heart was, and he had a growing disappointment in his son for not having the same longing. Bryce’s Mother, Norma, was a nurturing soul with a heart made of honey and soil. She had grown up in Jaquesville, and was proud to raise her children in the same place she had been raised. She loved the feeling of cool grass beneath her bare feet. Charles was her childhood sweetheart. He’d grown up in this old farmhouse, just as his Daddy did. The lovebirds took over the farm when Charles’s father passed away and left the land in their name. The land had been in the Lawrence family name for over one hundred years. Dani’s Father Neil, and Step Mother Rose, were also from Jaquesville but didn’t live there any longer. The two owned a large estate just twenty miles North in the town of Plainsburge. Rose was a young-for-her-age beauty with a love for children. Neil loved her more than any woman he’d ever met. She was the living embodiment of an angel in his eyes. Norma brought a large cake that she had made from scratch, from the kitchen. Florence, Hanleigh, and Topher were greeted by Bryce and Dani and guided over to the dinner table.
“We left our bags.” Topher pointed up the the SUV that sat parked on top of the steep hill.
“I’ll handle it.” Bryce smiled. He climbed the hill, grabbed their luggage, climbed back down, and placed it inside.
Everyone gathered around the table, and took a seat.
“Is Holly not showing?” Bryce asked his father. Charles looked at his wife for a response.
“She got called in, honey. But she mentioned something about taking you two out for dinner tomorrow night before y’all leave.” Norma responded with her country twang.
Bryce felt a slight bit of disappointment. He hadn’t seen his sister in almost a year. She had an internship at the community hospital and was always busy. A five minute phone call would be fine. But he couldn’t even get a response to a text message.
Charles stood up from the table, looking down at Neil.
“Neil, if you wouldn’t mind, I’d like to say a few words.” He said.
Neil placed his book down, placing his hands in his lap. Charles gave him a nod.

“Bryce, you’re my only boy. And I know I’ve been hard on you at times, but you know it was your best interest that I had in mind. I love you son.” He began, “ And I pray that you’ve learned from your mother and I. Daniella is your sweetheart, as your mother was mine. And that woman is going to be your wife now, and someday the mother of your children.” His eyes filled with tears, “ I want you to take her hand, and cherish her for the rest of your life. We may be from a small town but we got big hearts, son. You know that as well as I. And the only thing on this earth that’s gonna sooth that big ol’ heart of yours and fill it with love, is a loving woman like Dani. I seen you two grow together, learn together, and change together. And if y’all can make it through all them changes, you’re meant to be together.” Charles’s eyes were spewing tears as he raised his glass, “To Bryce and Daniella. May you two grow old together and live a happy life filled with joy and surprises. The good kind of course.”
Everyone raised their glasses, fighting through the tears.
“To Bryce and Daniella.” They all repeated. Charles’s wife rubbed his back with her hand.
“That was wonderful.” She smiled at her husband while everyone clapped at his speech.
Dani was so touched that she couldn’t stop crying until Rose hugged her closely and calmed her down. Bryce couldn’t take his eyes off of his beautiful fiancée the entire time.
Rose released Dani from her motherly hold and began to eat the barbeque on her plate. They all ate in silence for a short while.
“Oh, Dani didn’t tell me that you were expecting, Hanleigh.” Rose smiled across the table, “How far along are you?”
Never able to conceive a child of her own, Rose had gone through a period of her life where she was unwillingly obsessed with the idea. So overtaken with the idea that it was now easy to spot a pregnant belly.
Hanleigh froze. What would she say? How could she explain this secret that she had kept from everyone but Topher and Florence? Not to mention they were at Dani and Bryce’s engagement party. She was beginning to feel so embarrassed.
“Um… we actually haven’t had the chance to tell anyone.” Topher spoke shyly. Slightly embarrassed.
Rose blushed a deep red, as was fitting.
“Oh Lord. I’m so sorry..” She covered her mouth with one hand, the other she placed on her chest.
Hanleigh looked over at Dani who was in clear shock. She didn’t seem angry though. There was a look of sadness on her face instead.
“I’m sorry.” Hanleigh mouthed to her friend.
“Why didn’t you tell me sooner?” Dani asked, looking disappointed. Hanleigh was speechless. What could she say?
“I… I’m sorry.” Was all she could muster out.
“I wish you would have told me.” She said.
Hanleigh lowered her head in shame.
“I’m so happy for you guys.” She grinned, getting up from the table and walking around to hug her two friends from behind, “I love you two.”
Bryce faced his friend, giving him a strong handshake.
“Congrats, Man." He said.
“Congratulations. Children are a blessing.” Norma smiled from across the table.
“Thank you.” Hanleigh said, surrounded by the love of her friends and their family. She looked into Topher’s eyes, being filled with joy.
“Now who’s ready for some cake? I made it with fresh strawberries from the garden.” Said Norma, as she began to slice the cake.
Everyone shouted for their share of Norma’s dessert. The rest of the afternoon was filled with reminiscent stories of time gone past, as well as those of the now.
Florence lay in one of the guest room beds, tired and aching. She pulled out her cell, pressing the top button to open the lock screen. There was an unread message and a missed call.
When did that happen? Why didn’t she hear it? She touched the screen, unlocking it and opening her messages. It was Jance. The message read,

“I know it’s probably too late. But I’m sorry. I was afraid and selfish. I can’t stop thinking about you. I haven’t stopped. I miss you so much.”

Florence felt her heart flutter. There was such an excitement inside her she felt sick. Her fingers grew cold and she began to shiver and shake. With this excitement was an accompanying sense of relief. She pressed reply and began pitter-patting her icy fingers onto the phone’s screen.

“I forgive you.”

Was all she said. She lay, waiting for a response. A few minutes later there was a chime coming from the device in her hand.

“I’m too late. Huh?”

Was his response. She replied yet again.

“No. You’re not .”

She replied. Not one minute later,

“:)”

Her heart melted in her chest, just as it did the moment their lips met. She was just as afraid as he was. Why couldn’t he get that?
She stood up and walked over to the mirror, staring at her own reflection.
“Why are you such a moron?” She said, shaking her head.
Outside, Dani stood with her Father and Rose. The sun was down, and the night was crisp.
“Well honey, I think we’re about to head out. It’s getting late and we have an important meeting tomorrow.” Said Neil to his daughter.
“What’s it for, Dad?” She asked, not realizing her intrusion.
His daughter had a way of prying her way into his personal life. She was Daddy’s little girl.
“Uh… ahem.” He cleared his throat, “It’s for Rose and I to know, sweetie.”
Dani felt a bit of sadness. Daddy always shared things with her. Was something wrong?
Rose moved closer, placing a hand on Dani’s shoulder. She gave a sweet smile.
“We’ve decided to give it another try, Dani. I’m running out of time and I just needed to go out with a bang.” Rose explained.
What were they saying? She was too old to be a big sister. This stuff only happens to children. What if they had a child before she and Bryce? Her head was spinning with questions. But she put on a happy face.
“I’m so happy for you guys.” Dani falsely smiled, hugging Rose.
“Thank you, Daniella. It means so much to us.” Said Rose.
“I know. I know.” Dani patted her back, trying to feel anything but anger and frustration.
Neil cut in, hugging his daughter and kissing his wife on the head.
“I’m glad we could talk about this,” He began, “ We love you, Dani. We’ll see you soon honey bee.”
He released his daughter and place an arm around Rose.
“Please tell your friends that we said good-bye, will you?” Rose asked Dani with sincerity.
She gave a nod in return, trying to keep her cool. Neil walked off with his arm around his wife, waving to his daughter with a kind smile.
Topher and Hanleigh sat together in the large fenced in field behind the house. The sounds of crickets chirping, water bubbling in a nearby stream, and each other’s breathing filled the autumn night air.
He wrapped his arms around her. Hanleigh laid her back onto his strong chest. She placed his hands onto her enlarged belly to feel the small kicks of their child.
“Whoa…” He said, eyes widened with surprise. She couldn’t help but smile.
“Baby already loves you.” She looked back into his eyes, drawing him in for a kiss.
“I love you, Han.” He said, pulling her in closer, nuzzling his face into her neck. She smelled of a deep vanilla with a hint of lilac.
“And I love you, silly boy.” She whispered as he kissed her neck. Her mouth widened, letting out a large yawn.
Topher released her from his grip, gently pushing her forward.
“It’s time for bed.” He said, standing up. Hanleigh followed, taking his hand for assistance.
When she was up, she stared at him.
“What is it, Han? Something on my face?” He asked, placing a hand on his left cheek. She smiled at his ignorance, joining her hand on his.
“No, there’s nothing on your face.” She stared some more.
Topher saw the gleaming starlight sparkle in her eyes and understood.
He pulled her closely, placing a hand on each side of her. She ran her fingers through his hair as he lifted her.
“This is nothing short of perfection.” He said. She wrapped her legs around him like a small child, burying her face into his neck, just as he did hers.
Bryce was laying on his childhood bed, soaking in the memories of many years passed, when Dani walked out of the bathroom. It was like reliving a teenage dream.
“It’s so weird to be in here after all these years.” She said, plopping down onto the bed and making her way to his chest.
“Yeah, I know.” He said, wrapping his arms around her, taking in her scent.
“Time flies by. I can’t believe we’re already about to get married. It feels like we were just sitting on the bleachers with all our friends from high school.” She said, closing her eyes.
“So crazy to be all grown up, isn’t it?” He asked Dani, rolling her over onto the other side of the bed. She grunted in response.
“Well, not totally grown up.” She playfully smiled, giving his bare abdomen a good raspberry.
“H-h-hey!!” He exclaimed, laughing hard. “Get back over there.”
They pulled the blanket over their lower bodies, still sitting up in bed.
“I can’t believe it about Hanleigh.” He said, looking over to Dani for a response.
Dani paused, feelings a bit of pain in her friend’s secretiveness.
“Yeah..” She said, laying her head down on the pillow and facing the wall.
Bryce studied her body language.
“What’s wrong, sweetie?” He put his head down on the pillow beside her, placing his hand on her side.
“Nothing, I’m fine.” She lied, burying her face.
“You’re lying, Dani.” He called her out. “What’s going on with you?”
She whined into the pillow, muffling the sound.
“Rose and Dad are trying again.” She spat out, uncovering her face. “And not only that, but Hanleigh didn’t even tell me. I’d tell her..”
“Wow.. they really don’t quit.” He joked.
“Really?” Dani scoffed, slapping him on the arm. Bryce laughed in return.
“Haha, I’m kidding.. I’m kidding.” He pulled her closer.
“Baby, don’t feel sad. I’m sure there’s a good reasoning behind it all. And you should be excited. If it happens, it happens. You’ll be a big sister.” Bryce attempted to sooth her.
“That’s too weird.. What if our baby is younger than theirs? “ She said, worrying.
Bryce choked on his own saliva.
“B-b-baby?” He asked, fearful. “You’re not…?”
Dani shot up from the bed, looking at him in shock.
“Oh my God, no!” She shouted. Bryce looked relieved and shushed her.
“Phew.. you scared the hell out of me just then.” He laid his head down.
Dani joined him, and stared at the ceiling making shapes out of the textured, outdated ceiling.
It was momentarily quiet.
“Maybe I’m just overreacting.” She broke the silence, causing Bryce to slightly jump from his half-asleep state.
He adjusted himself on the bed.
“Mhm…” He sleepily mumbled. Dani let out a hard sigh and closed her eyes.
“Sweet dreams.” She exhaled.
“Sweet dreams, Baby.” He whispered.


Dani fell asleep in a heavy stress. She tossed and turned, waking up frequently. As where Bryce slept deeply and soundly.
After napping the entire evening away, Florence woke up groggy and depressed and ready to go back to bed.
She got up just long enough to use the restroom, brush her teeth, and return to her room. There was nothing but silence filling the large farm house.
Florence walked across the room and stopped just before the window. She viewed the large, colorful trees that blanketed the hills. The sky was filled with luminescent white orbs that glowed in the night sky.
A tear ran down her cheek. She angrily brushed it from her face.
“Why do I feel this way?” She sulked. Letting out a hard sigh, she removed the headband from her hair and began to undress.
When she crawled back into the unmade bed, she imagined herself in Jance’s arms. Taking in his masculine scent, musty yet fresh like mandarin. Pretending she could hear his heart beating beneath her ear.
“I love you, Florence.” The dream said.
She let out a mumbling breath, drifting into the dream world where her imagination would become reality. ... The next afternoon, in a house just outside of New Cambridge, Wren sat on her lover’s marital bed nonchalantly yawning.
“We need to do this more often.” Ian said, leaning against the headboard and biting his lip.
Wren rolled onto her back, stretching her entire body.
“You can say that again.” She smiled.
“We need to do this more often.” He joked.
“You’re funny.” She giggled, wiping the sleep from one of her eyes.
A door slammed causing the walls to vibrate. There were voices coming from the front of the house. One clearly a child, the other an adult woman.
“Ian! I’m home early. Mom’s fine. They released her from the hospital early.” Said the woman.
Ian jolted forward in a panic.
“Oh my God… Oh my God. Heather’s here. Quick, grab your clothes. Put them on.” He jumped from the bed, grabbing Wren’s things from the floor and handing them to her.
“B-“ She began.
“Now.” He said sternly.
Wren quickly put on her jacket, shorts, and flip flops. Ian pushed her towards the opened window.
“I love y-“ She tried to say, but Ian cut her off once more.
“There’s no time to talk, just get out the window. I’ll text you tonight when she’s not around. I promise.” He lied.
Wren climbed out the window, sadly. Slamming down onto the cold concrete.
Heather opened the bedroom door, bringing a strong whoosh of air with her.
“Ohh Honey, I miss you so much. We missed you.” She said, placing a hand on her clearly pregnant belly.
Wren sneakily peaked into the window, being sure not to be seen.
“I missed you too. So much, Sweetheart.” He said, placing one arm around her. The other guiding her chin for a kiss.
Heather smiled at her husband.
“What did you do last night?” She smiled at him, wrapping her arms around him and placing her head on his chest.
Ian searched for any excuse.
“Well I read for a while and eventually fell asleep. I just woke up.” He placed a hand on her head, giving a worried expression.
“You’ve slept so much!” She exclaimed, “Maybe we could put little miss Victoria to sleep and have a little time of our own? What do you say, Daddy?” Heather’s tone switched as she pulled her husband closer.
Wren’s blood filled with jealousy and anger. She was so mad, she could jump through the window right at that moment and tear the woman to pieces. And then she came to her senses.
She pulled her legs close, and began to sulk. What was she doing? Why did she have to fall in love with such a cruel, deceitful man?
There was a knock coming from the patio door window.
Ian’s daughter Victoria stood at the door with her thumb in her mouth, staring straight at Wren. She froze, not knowing what to do. The toddler removed her thumb and opened her mouth.
“Mommy!” She shouted, “Mommy! Thewe’s a wady outside”
Wren’s gut instinct was to run. Run as fast as she could but she knew that wasn’t the right thing to do in this situation.
She rose to a crouch, tip toeing her way around the courtyard of the home, along the fence.
The little girl ran into her parent’s bedroom and tugged on her mother’s dress.
“Mama… Mama.” She repeated, struggling for her mother’s attention.
The couple stopped canoodling and looked down at their daughter.
“What is it my little sweet.” Heather asked the little girl as she reached down to grab her.
“Mama, dare was a wady outside by da window.” She explained.
Heather looked at her husband in speculation.
“A lady?” She asked, “What did she look like, cupcake?”
Victoria looked around the room, showing just how short her attention span was.
“Um.. um.. She had hair like Daddy’s wheels.” She tried to describe.
Ian began to panic, but did his best to cover it up.
“Like Daddy’s wheels, huh?” Heather giggled at her daughter. “I think it’s time for a nap you little silly.”
Ian felt relief wash over him.
Heather laid her daughter down, taking her small shoes off of her feet, and tucking her in.
“Night, night, Princess.” She said as she kissed Victoria’s forehead.
Heather turned around, grabbing Ian’s hand, and walking over to the window. She got on her knees and looked outside.
“Children say such crazy things.” She said.
“They sure do.” He responded.
Heather turned around and faced her husband, looking him straight in the eyes.
“But sometimes what they’re saying, isn’t always untrue. Is it, Ian?” She was glaring now.
His heart sank in his chest. She knew. What was he going to say now?
Wren stood outside of the house’s fence, bent over in tears. This had to end. He was never going to leave his wife. To think that he would was a mistake.
“So stupid.” She exclaimed in a whisper, wiping the hair out of her face, along with tears.
Wren stood up, gathering herself and straightening her expression.
Walking away, she never wanted to look back. This had to be the last time she would see him. What she had been doing wasn’t right and she’d known it.
How did she have any right to feel jealous over a married man? She put herself in Heather’s shoes and realized just how wrong the path she was on, truly was.
She grabbed herself and looked up to the bright blue sky.
... Awhile later, across town, Jance sat at an outdoor café across from his mother, Lucille. His palms were sweating, his heart was racing. Pounding like a jack hammer on asphalt.
“Mom.. I asked you here for a pretty important reason..” He muttered out.
Lucille placed her hands on her chest, grinning in excitement to see her son.
“I’m just so happy to see you, Jancy. It’s been so long since I’ve heard from you. You look so grown up and handsome.” She smiled on.
Jance cleared his throat, adjusting himself in his seat.
“I know, Mom. I know. And I’m sorry for being so selfish.” He went on, “But I need to tell you something.”
Lucille sat forward, placing her hands onto the rim of the table.
“What’s wrong, sweetie? Is something wrong? Do you need money again? I think I’ve got a little in my purse. Just give me on-“ She bombarded him with kindness, digging through her small clutch in search of cash.
Jance crawled across the table, placing a hand on hers to stop the frivolous hunting.
“No, Mom. Stop.” He said sternly. Lucille closed her clutch, placing it back into her lap.
“Well.. What is it?” She searched his expression for any hint.
He cleared his throat once more and looked right at her.
“I’ve met someone.” He let out, trying not to choke.
Lucille’s face lit up so bright she could’ve exploded.
“Oh my goodness! What’s she like? Is she your age?” She asked along with several others.
Jance did his best to keep his cool.
“Mom, please.” He said somewhat loudly.
Lucille calmed herself, half smiling in excitement.
“I’m sorry.” She said.
“It’s okay, just listen.” He began, “I’ve met someone, and she’s made me realize a lot of things about myself, as well as you and Dad. And I just want to say that I’m sorry for being such a terrible son.”
Lucille looked confused.
“You are not a terrible son, Jance O’Henry.” She scowled in frustration.
“Mom, PLEASE.” He raised his voice again.
Lucille closed her mouth and gave a hard exhale.
“I’ve avoided coming around because I used to feel sorry for you, Mom. I have no wish to insult you or hurt you. But I did. I couldn’t handle watching you suffer while he was out having his way with whomever he pleased. And you always asking me when I’m going to get married, when am I going to do this or that? The thought of commitment was a repulsive one at that in my eyes, and it was because of him, Mom.
It was never you. You have the biggest heart of anyone I know. And while I can say that, she also has one of the biggest hearts. She showed me that you’re a kind, forgiving, loving person and it’s better to be that and be strong, than to be a cheater and a weak liar. And a few weeks ago I was a fool, Mom. A drunk, seductive mess. I was doing the exact same things that I watched him do to you my entire life. And when she made me open my heart, I got scared. So scared that I avoided her for weeks and it wasn’t fair, Mom. She’s the best thing that’s happened to me and I screwed up. I did. I screwed up. And I was lucky that she’s so much like you. She forgave me, you see. And I want you to meet her, Mom. She’s so smart, and beautiful. I don’t ever want to be without her.” Jance was smiling now, grinning even. There were tears in his eyes and love there was love in his heart.
Lucille was speechless, and tears were flowing down her gracefully aged cheeks.
“Please say something, Mom.” He said, half begging.
She grabbed a napkin from the table, wiping her face and clearing her throat.
“I’m so happy to hear you say those things, I’m not quite sure how to respond.” She wiped the running mascara from one eye.
“Just say that you forgive me.” He now begged.
Lucille looked at her son, trying to understand.
“Honey.. there’s nothing to forgive.” She said in confusion. “I can’t feel anything but happiness for you. You’re my only child and you’ve learned more on your own than I could’ve ever taught you. That’s a blessing in itself. But there is one person you should forgive.”
Jance looked down at the ground around his feet.
“Mom… you know I can’t..” He let out softly with a hint of sadness.
“You know what, Jance? Can’t never did nothin’.” She raised her voice.
He looked up at her in surprise.
“There were so many times that I wanted to leave your father, but I was forced to forgive. You know why? Because my Granny always told me “You can’t give up child. Too many people have given up on him and that’s why he’s the way he is. Just remember that can’t never did nothin’ and always forgive. If you don’t, you’re going to be bitter and old. Love him as God loves you.” And I took those words with me and they never left. I’ve forgiven him even when I’ve wanted to kill him because I was so angry. So when you say that you can’t forgive him, I can’t believe that. I won’t accept it, honey. I just won’t.”
Lucille fixed herself in her seat, still staring at her son.
“I… I’m… you’re right..” Jance mumbled. He’d never seen his mother act this way.
“I’m sorry, Jance. I know I’ve never raised my voice at you but I need you to understand.” She said.
“It’s fine, Mom. You’re right. I deserve that.” He reached for his glass, taking a large gulp of water. “It’s just something I need to work on.”
“I guess that’s all I can ask for, Son.” She said, giving him a soft smile.
Lucille placed her hands together and put on a happy face.
“So, what’s this lovely, hopefully-young lady’s name?” She asked.
Jance sat up in his seat, folding his hands together and placing them on the table.
“Her name’s Florence.” He smiled, hoping for his mother’s approval.
“Oh, how pretty.” She said to her son.
“Yeah, I read somewhere that it means flourishing and blossoming. I thought it suited her pretty well.” He blushed.
“Well when do I get to meet this flourishing Florence?” She grinned in her own humor.
“Really soon, actually. She’s meeting me here in what I hope is ten minutes.” He said, giddily.
“I can’t wait!” She exclaimed.
When Florence returned to New Cambridge, she felt a need of change was in order. So to make herself feel better, just as any girl would do, she scheduled herself a hair appointment.
As she walked down the concrete stairs of the salon’s second story location, she played with her blond ringlets. It was such a nice feeling to get rid of some of the weight and enjoy something other than bone straight hair.
She walked along the sidewalk of the outdoor cluster of shops and cafés, searching for Jance. They had agreed to meet up today for a small lunch and catching up. Butterflies filled her stomach, kicking and punching their way around. She was so nervous she could be sick. “Oh, there she is.” Jance said, jumping from his seat. Florence looked over, noticing him as well as the older woman that stood beside him.
Please don’t be his mother. She thought to herself.
“Hi.” She waved, walking around the way nervously.
After walking down the short stairs, she greeted the two, trying to keep her knees from buckling.
“Hey, I had my mom meet me here if it’s okay. There were some things that needed to be discussed.” He smiled, shyly.
Lucille placed a hand on the back of her son’s head.
“Florence, it is so nice to meet you. I’ve heard absolutely nothing but wonderful things.” She smiled.
“Oh no, it’s fine. It’s great to finally meet you Mrs. O’Henry.” Florence responded, politely.
“Lucille, honey. You don’t have to use all that Mrs. O’Henry crap on me.” She joked, trying to make Florence feel comfortable.
Florence nodded, feeling incredibly awkward anyway. Lucille glanced around at her surroundings, feeling the same way.
“Well, I think it’s about time for me to be heading off, sweetie. It was lovely meeting you, Florence. I hope to see more of you.” Lucille said, staring expectantly at Jance.
“I hope so too, Lucille.” Florence responded, opening her arms as Jance’s mother reached for a hug.
“You two have fun now. Stay out of trouble.” She said, kissing her son on the forehead and waving off as she walked away.
Jance watched his mother walk away until she turned the corner. He turned quickly and grabbed Florence, pulling her as close as he could before their bodies collided into one.
“Wha-“ Florence tried to let out.
He kissed her with all of his might, breathing her in to get his fix. It felt like minutes before he finally released her. She took in a deep breath to replenish her oxygen.
“I’ve missed you so much.” He gasped, “And please forgive me for surprising you with my mom?” he smiled.
Florence beamed with joy.
“You’re forgiven.” She said, “Now can we please get something to eat?”
Jance grinned and nodded in agree.
The two walked into the small bistro’s door, taking in the smells of the delicious array of foods that were sheltered by rounded glass.
“Hello, what can I get for you?” The round cashier asked them.
Florence took a quick look at the menu.
“Um.. I’ll have the mozzarella and olive tapenade Panini… aaand a coffee, please.” She said.
“Okay, and for you, sir?” the cashier asked Jance.
“Yeah, I’ll have the blackberry tartlet and a coffee as well.” He winked at Florence.

They paid the cashier and took a seat in a small nook of the bistro.
“I can’t believe you’re having that for lunch.” Florence laughed, taking a bite of her sandwich.
Jance took a large bite of the sugary confection.
“What about you, Miss Fancypants? What’s an olive tapenado or whatever, anyway?” He joked.
“Don’t worry about it.” She smiled, taking a sip of her coffee.
There was a brief silence as they ate their meal, or in Jance’s case dessert.
“Hey..” He said to her, watching her with admiring eyes.
Florence looked up, inquisitively.
“Yeah?” She asked, wiping her mouth with a paper napkin.
“I like you hair that way. It looks great on you.” He said, voice low.
Florence blushed, feeling embarrassed.
“Um.. Thank you. That’s really sweet of you.” She responded, slightly uncomfortable. Florence hated being the center of attention.
“No need to thank me.” He said, smiling at her continually. Florence blushed even harder.
“Okay.. I’m done.” She said, leaving a tip on the table. “Ready to go?”
“Already? Surely there’s something we can do around here.” He said, not wanting their time together to end.
“Like what?” She asked.
Jance grinned.
“Come on.”
They spent the rest of the afternoon walking around into the surrounding shops, acting like playful teenagers. Florence couldn’t remember the last time she’d had so much fun with anyone but Hanleigh.
As they made their way to the parking lot, Jance came up from behind Florence, grabbing her by the waist and pulling her close. This caused her to break out into laughter.
“I had so much fun. Honestly.” She said, pulling his arms from her and turning to face him.
“Good, I’m glad. I did too.” He pulled her closely, wrapping his arms around her. She buried her face into his chest, taking in that smell that she loved so much.
“I really need to get home. I still haven’t unpacked anything.” She said, pushing him back.
“Fine.. Fine. Let me walk you to your car.” He said, miserable that she was leaving.
Florence pulled the keys from her pocket, unlocking her car door. Before deciding to open it, she turned around to face him.
Catching her off guard, he pulled her in one more time.
“So, there’s something I need to ask you.” He said, heart racing in his chest.
Hers sank in her chest. Why did that make her so nervous?
“Well.. what is it?” She asked, voice shaking.
He pushed her back a foot, gently forcing her into the side of her car. Her heart joined the race, her senses tingled, her mind was racing. She was trying to catch her breath to no avail.
He touched his cheek with hers. The short hairs that grew from his face, were coarse on her skin, but she enjoyed it.
“Will you.. be mine if I promise to be yours?” He whispered into her ear, tickling the skin of her neck, giving her cold chills.
She couldn’t speak.. Was he really saying these things, or was it just another one of her day dreams?
To Be Continued...

Again, thank you all for reading. I hope you enjoyed Chapter Three. I'm sorry I take so long to put these up. I work between two computers and it's very time consuming to upload.

Please leave comments and rate? I love knowing what you guys think.

:)
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#1meg_xxSep 1, 2013

I love this keep this going!! \:\)

#2babygirl15526Sep 1, 2013

I don't mind all the words and less pictures. Your stories are amazing. You can feel the chemistry between the characters and how close they are to each other. Can't wait to see what happens.

#3NisukiSep 1, 2013

It only looks much longer now! But the thing is that there's so much going on and that's why I love this story. You describe everything really good :] . Oh.. what's Wren doing.. And lovely Florence \:wub\: and all the others. Love love, each of them. Can't wait to see what happens next \:rah\:

#4fruitopiaVIPSep 3, 2013

Your story is not too long especially when it is well written.

I really like Flo and Jance together their chemistry is good.

Waiting for the next chapter.

#5jiji20Sep 5, 2013

I loooove this story and i can't wait to read the next chapter. Very good job. I realy like Haneleigh and Topher. T

#6Beb413Sep 30, 2013

Ah I can't wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Please say you are posting the next chapter soon!!! Pretty please!!! \:eek\:

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