Eddie: Crystal Lake Firefighter Romance Serial - Chapter Seven
So many of you kept asking, "What happened to Sarah?" Whew, we finally got some answers last week, eh?
I really love the trust between Sarah and Eddie.
Remember, I will need your help with the ending!
I hope you are enjoying it so far.
Sending love, Terra
~ Eddie ~
“Daddy. Daddy. Wake up.”
I had my head under my pillow and a four-year-old on my back bouncing up and down. “You are lucky you’re cute, missy.” I groaned and carefully rolled over.
“I want heart pancakes, Daddy,” Kelsey said and pushed her hands up and down on my chest.
Before she had a chance to push once more, I grabbed both tiny wrists and pulled her closer to my face. “Give me a reason why I should?” I tried to say it with a straight face but failed miserably.
“She thinks you make the best pancakes ever.” Sarah’s voice made my body come alive.
I still had a hold of Kelsey’s wrists. The moment I let go, I engaged the tickle hands. She squealed and jumped off the bed so fast. Her little sounds rang through the room as she made her way down the hallway.
“I have a funny feeling she is not into those tickle hands.”
My traitorous body was reacting to Sarah. A part of me felt it was too soon to be looking at another woman. The other part of me knew it was okay. I stepped closer to her. “Yeah, how do you feel about them?” She let out a full belly laugh. “That sounded creepy didn’t it?”
“Just a bit,” She winked and turned to head downstairs. She stopped on the second step. “I do like them though.” That’s all she said, then she continued down the stairs.
“Shit.” I whispered. I needed a cold shower.
Running my hands though my hair one last time to make sure the soap was out. I opened my eyes and had to step back. My mind was playing tricks on me. I felt my wife’s presence in the shower. She was laughing and running her hands through her hair. Could she be there? Was it possible?
“Sara, is that you?” I whispered.
The figure in front of me never responded. Of course it didn’t. What was wrong with me? I rubbed my hands down my face and glanced at the spot where she stood. The figure was gone now. Was it a sign? But what sign? That she missed me. That it was okay to love again. What?
As I headed into the kitchen, I couldn’t shake what happened in the shower. I needed to see my sister.
“I need a rain check on pancakes, little one.” I bent down beside Kelsey and kissed her cheek. “I’m sorry.” I felt bad lying to my daughter, but I needed to see Jan.
“Tomorrow?” she said and held her arms up for me to pick her up.
“Tomorrow. Cross my heart.” I made a cross on my chest.
She nuzzled into my neck. “Okay.” Then she wiggled out of my arms and sat back down.
Sarah was leaning against the counter holding a coffee mug. She pushed off the counter and walked over. “Will Jan stop by today?” she asked and stepped closer.
“Yeah, I think she said about twelve o’clock.” The moment her body was near, my insides turned, I needed to leave.
“Perfect. I work at one today.”
My mind replayed my dead wife’s body standing in the shower. “I’ll see you both tonight.” I turned and left the room.
“How is this normal?” I asked and continued to turn the mug around in circles on the table.
“I know you just met Sarah, but she is making you question everything you believe.”
“Like my dead wife standing in the shower?”
“Eddie, be serious.”
“Jan, I’m trying, but there was a ghost in my shower today.”
“I’m sorry, a memory…but it sure looked like a ghost.”
My wife and I used to watch those ghost hunter shows and laugh. She would tell me she believed in ghosts. Me, I didn’t have a thought either way…until today.
“Okay, so say it was a memory in my shower. Is there a reason it happened right after Sarah and I had just flirted with each other?”
Jan stood up and headed over to the coffee pot. “That’s exactly why it happened. You are unsure about being with another woman.”
“I wouldn’t say that.”
“Okay, maybe a little,” I said and held my coffee mug out for her to refill. “But it has not even been a year.”
“So? So what?”
She chuckled. “It’s been almost a year. It’s okay to be attracted to another woman.”
I sat there for a moment unsure what I was feeling. My mind wandered back to the day before my wife died. She grabbed my hand and made me promise to find love again. I could see the day like it was yesterday. What stuck out for me, I never agreed to find love again. The word yes or okay never fell from my lips. Now as my mind wandered, I wanted to know why she didn’t force me to respond. She was my best friend, the mother of my child, and the one woman I vowed to love, honor, and cherish. Then the last part of that vow popped in my mind. Love, honor, and cherish for as long as we both shall live.
Jan placed her hand on my shoulder. “You okay?”
“Yeah, I think so.”
“Tell me where your mind just went?”
“I can love, honor, and cherish someone else now.”
“Ah, well, yeah. Do you want to though?”
“I don’t know. I mean, I know my body reacts the moment Sarah is near, but…”
“But what? Those emotions are okay. You know you don’t have to rush anything. Just take it slow and see where it takes you.”
“I’m not sure.”
“Just think about it.”
I stood up and kissed her temple. “Thanks for listening.”
I made my way to the truck and thought about the vows I made all those years ago. We were young, but we knew what we wanted. Now, today, I wanted it all back.
I wanted my wife back…or did I.
~ Sarah ~
“That will be fourteen dollars and sixty-two cents,” I said and smiled to the older woman.
“You’re the young woman on the TV the other day,” she said and riffled through her change purse.
“Um, yeah.” I needed to find another job. Maybe in another town.
“Good for you on fighting back, dear.”
“I’m sorry. What did you say?”
The woman reached for my hand and squeezed it. “Bullying and treating women inappropriately is not okay.”
“Honey, you don’t have to say, ‘yes ma’am’ to me,” she winked and grabbed each one of her bags.
I didn’t know what to say.
“Was Harriet telling one of her stories again?” Jackie asked and leaned against the bagging area counter.
“No, she was praising my actions from the other day.”
“Well, we all should. Your father’s an ass.”
I tried to swallow but choked and had a coughing fit.
Jackie patted me on the back. “You okay?”
“Yeah, swallowed wrong,” I said in between coughing and raising my arms above my head in hopes that would work. When I finally felt I was able to speak again. “I thought I would need to look for another job after what happened.”
Jackie’s eyes went wide. “Oh honey, no. You don’t need to go anywhere.”
For so long I ran from my past and hid the truth about who I was. Now my life was like an open book and only because my dad hated that I wasn’t his punching bag anymore. To hear Jackie say what I always thought about my dad. It felt good. A part of me was ready to stop running from my past.
Now I needed to convince the other part of me.
It was too cold to ride my bike to work, so the car ride back to Eddie’s place took only about five minutes. As I pulled into the driveway, I noticed several lights on in the house. Then Kelsey pushed the front door open and came barreling down the steps. I let go of my many thoughts and opened the car door.
“Hi, sweet pea.”
“Sarah,” she yelled and threw herself against my leg.
“Well, a girl could get used to a greeting like this.”
“I missed you.”
“You did? But I was only gone for a few hours.”
She grabbed my hand and tugged me inside. “Come see what I did today.”
The front door was still wide open and Eddie was leaning against the frame. He usually had a smile on his face but right now he was stoic. Which seemed odd.
“Hi,” I said almost out of breath because Kelsey ran the whole way.
“Hi. You hungry?”
“Yeah, but I can get something later. I don’t want to bother you both.”
Eddie scowled. “Why do you think you would be a bother?”
I wanted to say, by the look on your face just a few second ago. Instead, I said, “Oh, I was thinking you may want special time with Kelsey.”
It felt weird tonight. Something was off.
Kelsey jumped up and down. “Daddy, can she have dinner with us? Please.”
“Of course,” Eddie said and turned to head into the kitchen.
I bent down to be eye level with Kelsey. “Hey cutie, I need to go upstairs for a few. I’ll meet you in the kitchen in five minutes. Deal?”
She bobbed her head up and down. “Deal.”
For most of my life I had no one to talk to. My thoughts were my own, so I used my journal and let my emotions pour out on every page. At the moment, I needed that journal more than I needed air.
Closing my bedroom door, I pulled my journal from my purse and let my pen just fly across each page. There were so many things I wanted to share, I was afraid of running out of paper. I wrote about my encounter with the woman at the store today and shared the conversation I had with Jackie about my dad, always adding in my extreme loathing for my father. What I needed to get off my chest was the way I felt whenever I was close to Eddie. I wrote about how the feelings scared me. Once I let it all out on paper, I sat my pen down and went into easy sitting pose to meditate for five minutes.
There was a loud knock followed by Kelsey yelling my name. “Sarah?”
When I let myself meditate it was easy to lose track of time. I placed my hands in prayer position in front of my chest and whispered, “Namaste.” About four years ago I discovered yoga and meditation was the only thing that helped me get though the day.
“Hold on, sweetie,” I yelled back and stood up.
There was another knock and this time a soft voice. “Sarah, you okay?”
I opened the door. “Yeah, I needed a few minutes.”
“You’ve been in here for over thirty minutes. Kelsey got worried and begged me to check on you.”
“I’m so sorry.”
“Dinner’s ready,” he said and turned to head down the stairs.
Eddie seemed unhappy. Was it something I did?
I needed to find out.
Did you enjoy chapter seven of Eddie? Let me know in the comments below! :-)
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PLUS: Jackson's story will be available in the Fall.