Sarah woke up in Brian's arms, a new feeling for her. A new feeling
that she liked. She liked it a lot. In fact, she loved it.
She loved him.
She never thought she'd feel so complete. She hugged his arms and
glanced at her clock. Ten-thirty, her mom had called the day before
and said that she wasn't going to come home until Sunday night, when all
the traffic wouldn't be too bad.
'Good, she would flip if Brian was still here when she got here,' Sarah
thought. 'But I wouldn't have cared, she probably would've killed
me, but as long as Brian was here, I would've been fine.'
Sarah pried Brian's hands off of her and
pulled on a shirt that was on the floor. She walked to the bathroom,
carrying her bathrobe. She took a quick shower and put on her robe.
She looked into the slightly steamy mirror and smiled at herself.
She finally thought of herself as not ugly. She wasn't
beautiful like Brian told her, but she thought
of herself as pretty. She walked out of the bathroom and back to her room
and saw that Brian was still asleep. That was ok, she had to go to
work for a few hours. Not
anywhere near her usual eight and a half
hours, but rather four hours that day, it would go pretty quick compared
to everything else.
She got dressed quickly and grabbed her blow dryer, bringing it to the
bathroom and doing her hair. She finished in about fifteen minutes
and put away the dryer in the cabinet behind her. She went back into
her room and pulled on her sneakers, kissed Brian's cheek, and left a note
for him telling him where she went. She hurried downstairs and outside,
down the street to the ice cream store, and walked in at eleven-twenty-nine.
"Cutting it close, Sarah? Used to sleeping in, aren't you?"
Linda, Sarah's boss asked as she walked in the back.
Sarah nodded, smiling. "Yeah, I'm pretty used to it, but I'll get
back in the swing of things soon," she said. She looked around the
back, and then went into the front. She started cleaning everything
that needed to be cleaned, filling the cups and ice and checking the ice
cream to see if anything needed to be changed, and was soon met with some
company from her friend, Aly, who also worked there, at about one.
The two girls worked together and Linda left after making more ice cream,
promising to be back in a few hours, and left the two alone. They
were handling the Saturday rush fine and they ordered food from the pizza
store down the street. Aly went to get it and Sarah was left alone
for a little bit until she came back.
Sarah was scraping down the ice cream in one of the buckets so they could
tell when it needed to be changed when the bell attached to the door rang,
indicating that someone had come in the store. Sarah glanced up and
"Hello," she called brightly. She didn't catch the person's face,
rather she was concentrating on her job. She finished what she was
doing and looked at the person.
"Hey, sleepy head, I didn't think you were going to get up," she said to
Brian as he walked to the counter.
"Well, I wasn't going to, but the absence of someone special made me wake
up and wonder where you went," he said, lifting his hand to her cheek and
rubbing it with his thumb. "I love you so much," he said quietly.
Sarah's face relaxed into a calm smile and she raised her hand to his.
"I love you too," she said, taking his hand and squeezing it. She
looked into his eyes and saw something she'd never seen in anyone's eyes
before, adoration. She loved the way he looked at her, something
that made her feel so much better and wanted. She leaned forward
and kissed him. "I would leave with you, but I have to work until
three-thirty," she said, breaking away from him after a few moments.
"That's ok, you have a job to do, just like I do," Brian said, leaning
his elbow on the raised counter of an ice cream case. He looked over
at the clock on the wall and smiled back at her. "But there's only
about forty-five minutes left, so then I'll be able to see you," he said.
Sarah nodded and looked out the window of the store, catching a glimpse
of something. A purple shirt. "Oh, man, Aly's coming," she
"Who's Aly?" Brian asked, letting go of her hand.
"I work with Aly, she's working here today with me. We're really
good friends, but she will ask a lot of questions," Sarah said.
Brian smiled at her and kissed her again quickly. "You're so adorable
when you worry. But don't, you don't have to. Can I order or
is this beautiful goddess in front of me going to distract me?"
Sarah blushed and backed up a little from the counter. "I don't know
what you're talking about, 'beautiful goddess', but I will be happy to
take your order," she said.
Brian shook his head. "You'll get it one day," he said to her.
"Umm, lemme have a chocolate milk shake," he said, looking up at the menu.
"Ok, do you really like rich chocolate flavor?" Sarah asked as she
"No, too much gives me chills."
"Then let me suggest a black and white shake, its chocolate syrup with
vanilla ice cream and it tastes really good, on the sweet side, but its
Brian nodded. "Sure, get me one of those, the way you would have
"Are you sure?"
"Please," he said to her with a teasing tone.
Sarah laughed as she started the shake by squirting some milk into the
cup. She added the syrup and the ice cream as Aly came in the store.
"Hi," she said to Brian, smiling. She came behind the counter and
passed Sarah. "Nice," she whispered. Sarah giggled as Aly walked
into the back with the food bags.
"What did she just bring?"
"Breakfast and lunch. I woke up a little late today so I didn't eat
anything and she woke up early and had breakfast around ten, so she was
getting lunch, and I breakfast." Sarah explained as the shake mixed
in the machine and she put a top on it and grabbed a straw. "Here
you go," she said, handing it to him.
"How much is that?" Brian asked, taking the shake and sticking the
straw in it.
"You aren't paying, I am," she said, walking to the register.
"No way, I am paying for my own shake," he said, meeting her at the register.
"Then why couldn't I pay for my own dinner last night?"
"Because you weren't supposed to."
"Brian," Sarah started.
"Sarah," Brian started with the same tone. He held out a five.
"Here, I am paying."
Sarah sighed and rang it up, taking the five from him and making out his
change. "Here, a dollar forty is your change," she said, holding
it out to him.
Brian shook his head as he took a sip of his shake. "You keep it."
"Keep it, Little Howland," he said sternly, looking in her eyes.
Sarah sighed and put it in the tip cup on top of the register. "There,
I kept it, happy?" She asked sarcastically.
"Incredibly, come here," Brian said.
Sarah leaned forward and he kissed her gently. Sarah smiled as he
pulled away from her and walked to the door.
"I told you those shakes were better than regular ones," she said.
"And you were right," Brian said before he left. He walked back towards
Sarah's, his head down, hiding his face behind his hat and sipping his
shake. Sarah shook her head and walked into the back.
"And why was I never informed that you have a boyfriend who is hot as hell?"
Aly asked as Sarah sat down on two crates and opened the pizza box in front
"Because I never felt the need to," Sarah replied, shrugging. She
bit into her hot pizza, relishing the taste of the cheese. Cheese.
She giggled, thinking about how ironic that was.
"What's so funny?" Aly asked, looking strangely at Sarah from her
chair across the table.
Sarah shook her head and swallowed the mouthful, sipping from the cup of
water next to the box. "Nothing, just
remembering something funny having to do with pizza."
"Ok, tell me about Mr. Hottie, what's his name? Where's he from?
And why have I never seen him before?" Aly questioned, starting her
"His name is Brian, he's from Florida, and you've never see him before
because he's always away, he works in the industry and he's needed all
over the world."
"Which industry? There's a million of them, the textile industry,
wood industry, metal industry, entertainment industry. Pick one and
explain," Aly instructed.
"Pushy, pushy!" Sarah exclaimed, looking at Aly. Aly gave her
that look that said 'just say it' and Sarah nodded. "He works for
the entertainment industry, he works in music, to be more specific, he
writes music and sings a little too. He's pretty good, I like his
voice a lot."
"When did you two meet?"
"About a year ago. We ran into each other in New York." That
was false, but Sarah didn't want to let Aly onto anything that would jeopardize
Brian's security, too much of a risk.
"How old is he?"
Sarah took a big bite of pizza before replying. She debated whether
or not to tell the truth as she chewed. She decided she might as
well and swallowed. "Twenty-four."
"What?! You're seeing someone eight years older than you?!?"
Aly exclaimed, dropping her fork.
Sarah nodded and took another sip of her water and got up to refill her
cup. "Yeah, he's eight years older than I am, but you'd never think
it." She walked into the front of the store and put ice in her cup,
then filled it with water. She served some woman with a cone of ice
cream, then walked into the back again.
"Why are you seeing someone so old?" Aly asked, still stuck on the
age issue. She hadn't even picked up her fork.
"Age doesn't matter. Linda is thirty-nine and Chris is more than
ten years younger than she is, they didn't care. And my old pastor,
he was married to a woman twenty-one years older than he was. What's
the difference when you get along well enough?" Sarah asked hypothetically.
"There is a difference, in both those cases, the woman was older than the
man, not the other way around. And I'm willing to bet you can't think
of another instance where your case applies," Aly said, finally picking
up her fork.
"Ok, Cinderella and her prince, Sleeping Beauty and her prince, Han Solo
and Princess Leia need I go on?"
"Yes, those are in the movies, I'm talking real life relationships.
Find one and you get your money."
"Ok, how about" Sarah thought hard. This was actually kind of difficult.
"Hey! What about my eight grade math teacher, Mrs. Scheller, her
husband is ten years older than her and they're about to celebrate their
five year anniversary soon."
"Yeah, he was chicken shit to propose."
Aly laughed and shook her head. "Though I probably shouldn't, here's
your money," she said, pulling a crumpled five out of her pocket.
Sarah grinned and took the money, shoving it in her pocket, and finished
her two pizza slices. She washed her hands and cleaned up her mess,
then went out front as customers came in. She worked for the next
half-hour until her relief came and then said goodbye to everyone, walking
home. She made it upstairs and heard music coming from her room.
She walked in the door. "I thought that since this was our last night
together, that I'd try to make it as memorable as possible," Brian said,
holding a single white rose out to her.
Sarah smiled and took the rose, smelling it. "Thank you," she whispered.
Brian nodded and pulled her into his arms. He kissed her neck lightly,
making Sarah's mind lose control of her actions.
"You're quite welcome, beautiful," Brian whispered in her ear. He
kept on kissing her, working his way to her mouth.
"Stop calling me that, it's not true," Sarah whispered, her eyes closed.
She opened her eyes as she felt Brian straighten her head and she looked
in his eyes.
"Every word I ever tell you is true unless I tell you otherwise.
I love you, I adore you, and I would never lie to you. You are beautiful,
you are the most beautiful person I've ever seen in my life," he said,
caressing her face with his hand.
Sarah shook her head and felt tears come into her eyes. "No I'm not,
I'm no where near what other people look like," she said, feeling the tears
"Shh," Brian said, wiping away her tears. "Don't cry, you are beautiful.
Forget what anyone else ever told you, I'm telling you right now, the truth,
that you are extremely beautiful and no matter what anyone else has said
or will say, believe what I tell you," he said, rubbing her nose with his.
Sarah looked down at the rose in her hands, the pure white bud that was
so perfect, so untouched, not stained by any hateful words or tortured
by mean things. Rather, it was beautiful, perfect, so much like Sarah
wanted to be.
Brian lifted Sarah's chin up and looked at her, wiping away the last of
her tears. "You are the most beautiful woman I have ever had the
pleasure of laying eyes on and I love you so much that I don't know how
I'm going to let you go tomorrow, but I'm going to have to. I want
you to remember that I love you and cherish what we have, and I always
will. I will never leave you for someone else, you know why?"
Sarah shook her head, smiling a little, having a feeling that she knew
what was coming. "No, why?"
"Cause no one else comes close to you, no one makes me feel the way you
do. You're so special, Sarah, to me, and you'll always be, eternally.
Everytime I hold you near, you always say the words I love to hear.
Sarah, with just a touch, you can do so much, no one else comes close,"
he sang. He knew it was Sarah's favorite, she'd told him that a while
ago. He knew she listened to that song to make herself feel better.
And with the slightly altered lyrics, she was feeling a lot better.
"You are the only person that I can think of at this moment in time that
I would ever want to spend my life with," Brian said.
"But what about later in life? What if you find someone you're more
compatible with, someone closer to your age?" Sarah asked.
Brian shook his head. "I won't. You light up my life in a way
no other person can. You know why?"
"Cause you are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies
are gray. You don't know, dear, how much I love you, so please don't
take my sunshine away," he sang, smiling.
Sarah let out a little laugh and leaned her forehead on his. "I don't
want to take away your sunshine, I'm not the one taking it away," she said.
Brian nodded and pulled her closer to him, hugging her. "I know,
I know, I don't want to let you go either. But my job, my career,
you're important to me, very important to me, but when I'm called to do
my job, I have no choice but to go, I'm bound by contract."
Sarah nodded, holding him around his neck tighter, trying to hold back
more tears. "I know, just promise you won't forget me."
Brian held her around her waist with one hand and took her right hand with
his. "There's no way I could ever forget you, never not think about
you. You're the one thing in my life that makes me completely happy,
I couldn't be happier doing anything else, having anyone else. You
are my life, my inspiration, my love, and nothing can ever change what
I feel," he whispered.
Sarah let the tears flow from her eyes and moved with Brian as he swayed
back and forth with her to the music in the CD player, a classical CD that
was part of her collection consisting of the best piano pieces by the best
classical writers. One of the pieces being 'Moonlight Sonata', Sarah's
favorite. Though it was sad, it was a wonderful piece, and Brian
knew it. As soon as the sonata came on, he started humming with it,
holding Sarah even closer. She relaxed with him, resting her head
in the crook of his neck, closing her eyes. She could see the music
moving in front of her. It was beautiful swirls of color, dark colors,
but beautiful colors that swirled and moved and twirled around in the air,
comforting her in a strange way.
Sarah and Brian kept dancing together as
the CD ended and the player searched the other two spaces for CDs, but
it was empty. They danced together to music only they could hear.