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Mary-Kate heard an enraged squeak from behind one of the bushes but didn't stop to think what it was about. She just ran her hands through Tom's hair and forgot what was the present and what was the past.

"Mary-Kate! Are you out here?" They heard Ashley calling from the castle.

The pulled apart as if the other were on fire and backed away. "Y-You shouldn't have done that" Mary-Kate stuttered staring at him in shock.

"I'm sorry" Tom said his shoulders slumping.

Mary-Kate didn't know what to think or do. The kiss had really gotten to her and she could barely remember how to walk. She somehow managed to stumble up the hill and back to the castle, leaving Tom standing by the river feeling very lonely and guilty. He had turned away from the castle when he heard leaves rustling behind him. He turned around to see Fredrick standing there.

"How could you do that?!" Fredrick ranted "First you come in and destroy Mary-Kate's life. You ruined our relationship and now you're trying to steal her from me!"

"I'm sorry! Really I am. I love her... I- I can't just leave without knowing what happens."

Fredrick just spun around and stalked off angrily. Tom shook his head. That definitely didn't go well but at least the guy didn't attack him.


"What's wrong?" Ashley asked Mary-Kate, concerned.

Mary-Kate just shook her head, tears streaming down her face, and ran through the ballroom and up the stairs.

Ashley shot Jonathon an apologetic look and ran after her.

Jonathon sighed and glanced over at his parents. They'd be making the official announcement of his engagement any moment now. Typical, Ashley had to disappear seconds before that!


"Mary-Kate?" Ashley said softly knocking on the door.

"Yeah?" Came the faint response.

"What happened?"

She heard Mary-Kate sigh and then the door opened.

"What happened?" She asked again.

"He kissed me" Mary-Kate said walking over to a chair and sitting in it. She buried her head in her hands "I'm SO confused!"

"I wish I could help Mary-Kate. Really I do. But you have to figure this out for yourself"

"I know" Mary-Kate said nodding her head. "But this is the biggest decision of my life. Fredrick and I have been through so much togethere but even if I did choose him he may never talk to him again. And then I have this totally different feeling for Tom. He always makes me feel safe. I guess it's cause when I thought Fredrick was dead he was always there for me. I don't know what would have happened to me if he hadn't been, I was so depressed..." She trailed off.

Ashley patted her on the shoulder and opened her mouth to say something. She was interrupted by Jonathon knocking on the door "Ashley they're just about to make the announcement!"

Ashley glanced at Mary-kate apologetically.

Mary-Kate just brushed away her tears and smiled "I wouldn't miss it!" She said getting up and walking out the door with Ashley.

Chapter 10

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