Empty Spaces


Chapter One

"There were bells on the hill,
But I never heard them ringing,
No, I never heard them at all,
Till there was you..."

Kylie MacPherson was singing softly to herself as she stood in the kitchen scrambling eggs on the stove.

"There were birds in the sky,
But I never saw them winging,
No, I never saw them at all,
Till there was you."

Seeing that the eggs were done, she turned off the heat and moved the pan off of the burner. The toaster oven let out a ding telling her that it had finished the bread, and she went over to take out the toast and put it on a plate.

"And there was music,
And there were wonderful roses,
They tell me in sweet fragrant meadows,
Of dawn and dew..."

Kylie scraped the eggs out of the pan and let them fall onto the plate with the toast. She grabbed a fork and the cup of coffee she had just made and started toward the bedroom.

"There was love all around,
But I never heard it singing,
No, I never heard it at all,
Till there was you."

She finished the song just as she got to the bedroom door. Grinning, she opened it and padded quietly inside.

Dylan Reynolds, her roommate and boyfriend of over a year, was lying on his side in the center of the bed, still fast asleep. The comforter was only pulled up to his waist, and Kylie let herself stare at his bare chest for a moment before quickly shaking her head and going to put the food down on the bedside table. Then she climbed onto the bed and snuggled up behind him. Wrapping her arms loosely around his neck, she gave him a kiss on the cheek. Her hand slid down his chest as she said into his ear, "Wake up, baby, I made you breakfast."

Dylan yawned and opened his eyes. "Huh?" he murmured groggily, looking for her.

Kylie smiled. "Back here," she said.

He rolled over onto his other side so that he was facing her. "Hey," he said, smiling wearily when their eyes locked.

She kissed him softly. "Morning. I made you breakfast," she repeated.

His smile widened. "You didn't have to do that."

She shrugged. "It's not exactly gourmet."

"What'd you make?"

Kylie pointed at the food, and he turned to look at it.

"Well, you can say that again," Dylan agreed.

"Hey," Kylie protested.

"Kidding," he assured her. He sat up and put the plate on his lap. "You're not gonna join me?"

"I already ate."

"Eggo waffles?"

"Do you even have to ask?" she replied rhetorically. "I ate and then I got bored so I decided to cook."

Dylan had already started eating. "Mm, you should get bored more often," he remarked.

Kylie grinned. "Thanks...I think."

"Anytime, babe," he replied. "Anytime."

"So, what's up for today?" Kylie asked as he took a sip of coffee. Today was Saturday, the one day that they both had completely off from working at his restaurant. That was the first set of jobs the two of them had. He was the owner, and she waited tables.

"I have more song ideas to work on," Dylan answered. "And of course, we can practice the older ones some more."

"Okay," Kylie said. That was the second set. She was a singer, and he managed, accompanied, and wrote songs for her. Ideally, he would have sold the restaurant by now, and those would be their only occupations, but Kylie hadn't quite gotten discovered yet.

This was something that other people never seemed to understand when they saw her perform. She had an amazing voice. She could dance. She had great stage presence. And with her delicate features, dark brown hair, and dazzling green eyes, she wasn't exactly lacking in the looks department. The problem wasn't her material, either. Dylan had a wonderful gift, and when he and Kylie worked together on a song, nine times out of ten, the results were pretty impressive.

The problem facing them was simple: neither of them had the connections to break her into the business. Since they lived in L.A., where celebrity wannabes were present in droves, you simply had to have a connection to get an audition or an interview with any of the worthwhile talent agencies, not to mention the record labels. And Dylan and Kylie both tried very hard, but no matter what, they always seemed to come up empty-handed.

Kylie sighed and unknowingly slid her arms around Dylan. She was so lucky to have him. She knew that she would have given up by now if it hadn't been for him. He kept her going...kept her spirits up, kept her believing that their goal really was within reach. She hoped that someday the things he always told her would come true. Not just for her own benefit...because that would show him that his efforts really hadn't been in vain.

Dylan put a hand on top of hers, which were now locked around his waist. "Baby?" he asked.

She smiled, suddenly aware that she had embraced him. "Nothing. Just thinking," she admitted.

He kissed her forehead. "Thanks for breakfast, Kylie."

"I love you," she said softly.

This time he kissed her lips. "I love you too."


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Lyrics from "Till There Was You"
From The Music Man
Words and music by Meredith Wilson