“I don’t want to cause friction between you and your mom.”
“The friction is already there. I don’t know if I will ever be able to forgive her for getting you fired. I love her and would miss her if it came down to that, but I can live without her. I don’t think I could ever live without you.”
“We’ll work it out, try not to worry okay? Remember how much I love you.”
We talked for a few more minutes and then said good night. He promised to call again the next day at the same time.
After the call, I was exhausted and fell right to sleep.
I woke up the next morning confused. I sat up and looked at Sam who was rubbing sleep out of her eyes.
Finally, Sam focused on my face.
“What’s the matter?” She asked.
“He wasn’t there last night, I didn’t dream about the Boardwalk at all,” I said panic stricken.
Sam looked alarmed. “You didn’t dream about him?”
I shook my head no and lay back down. I felt light headed like I was sick or something.
“You look peaked, are your emotions getting out of hand?” Sam asked.
I shook my head no, it wasn’t like that. I’d gone to bed with my heart aching from missing Mark, and awoke to find that the ache had spread throughout my whole body.
This wasn’t emotional sickness, this was something else. Something I had never experienced before.
“Will you tell my mom that I’m too sick to go to school?” I asked Sam.
My mom came up to verify that I was truly sick. If I wasn’t so sick, I would have dwelled on how much our relationship had changed over the course of thirty six hours.
My mom took one look at me and knew that I was sick. Sam wanted to stay with me, but my mom wouldn’t let her skip school. Mom closed the blinds and turned off my bedroom lights after Sam left for school. I rolled over in a ball and sunk into an uneasy sleep.
Every few hours or so, my mom would creep in to check on me, and by the time Sam came home, she was as sick as me. It was obvious she had a case of what I had, or so my mom thought. We couldn’t tell my mom that we were just suffering from separation sickness. She called Sam’s foster parents and told them that Sam and I had picked up a bug. She assured them that Sam would be fine where she was. “I’m here anyway,” I heard her say.
Sam and I dozed for the rest of the afternoon, and by the time the guys called, I didn’t even have the energy to talk, I just wanted to sleep. Sam was feeling a little better than I was, so she talked to Shawn, but she kept it simple.
“I think you guys need to come home. We need you.” Shawn didn’t need any explanations, he told her that they found what they needed and would be on the first plane home in the morning.
Sam hung up the phone and told me. I heard her from far away. All I wanted to do was sleep.
I woke the next morning with my mom kneeling at my side.
“Honey you look so sick. I think I need to take you to the hospital.”
“I just need Mark,” I whispered as I drifted back to sleep.
I woke later to raised voices. Too weak to move, I laid there as the voices got louder. “You just have to trust me, but one way or another, I’m going in there.”
I was too weak to even move as Shawn and Mark charged into the room. Shawn hurried to Sam’s side and pulled her into his arms.
I could hear my mom trying to protest. My eyes drifted closed before Mark even reached my side.
I woke a few seconds later to Mark’s hands on my face. I was in his arms and was finally able to open my eyes and keep them open.
“I don’t think I can live without you,” I said in a weak voice.
“I know that I can’t live without you,” he answered back.
He leaned over and kissed me. I felt the ache that was gripping my body begin to loosen its death grip on me. I deepened the kiss, and the familiar warmth spread though me. His touch was the nourishment I needed.
I could hear Sam and Shawn talking quietly. Sam had recovered quicker than me, probably because she hadn’t been separated from Shawn as long.
Mark continued to rain light kisses across my face and soon I began to regain my strength. I could feel my heart began to find its normal rhythm again.
I was surprised when I finally looked up and saw my mom was still standing uncertainly in the doorway.
“We have to tell my mom something,” I said in a whisper.
We could skim over the sketchier parts, but we had to give her something. I had wanted to keep her in the dark as much as I could and spare her all the details, but she had just witnessed my friend and I miraculously recover from a terrible illness by a few kisses from a couple of guys. She wasn’t stupid and she would want answers.
Mark nodded his head.
“Mom, I know you’re confused. We were too at first, but if you let us explain, you will start to understand,” I said in a still weakened voice.
She nodded her consent, and the five of us headed down to the living room to talk. Sam and I were still weak, so the guys helped us down the stairs and got us settled on the couch.
My mom sat on one of the recliners in the living room and Mark perched on the edge of the other recliner. Shawn chose to lean against the wall.
I started from the beginning. I told her about having the dreams every night, not just every once in awhile, like I had led her to believe. I explained my first meeting with Mark, and the familiarity I felt the first time I met him. I then told her how he stepped out of the shadows of my dreams that first night. I explained that I feel like I had known him my whole life because he had always been in my dreams. I didn’t mention any connections with Shawn and Sam except that they had similar dreams as ours. I knew there were numerous holes in my story, but I only wanted to give her the facts.
She listened quietly the whole time, and finally when I was done talking, she finally said something.
“You expect me to believe all that?” She asked incredulously.
“Come on mom think about it, do you have a better explanation for all of this?” “You saw how sick I was. Do you think I was faking that or what about all those times my emotions got out of control?” I said in a hurt voice.
“Of course not, it’s just that all of this seems pretty farfetched; dreams about each other and getting sick because you were apart? How come you were fine away from him In Montana, but now you seem to have issues?”
“We don’t know, Mrs. Miller. Believe me, we wish we did,” Mark finally interjected.
“I don’t like any of this,” she said to him. “My daughter is only seventeen and you’re already acting like she’s yours.”
“I realize we’re young, but that doesn’t seem to matter to the dreams. We just want to get to the bottom of those first. Everything else we can take slowly, one day at a time. I’m not trying to steal her from you,” he said, finally zeroing in on what was really bothering my mom. She had just lost my dad less than a year ago, and now she thought she was on the verge of losing me.
I stood up and walked over to where she was sitting. Perching on the arm of the chair, I grabbed her hand. “Do you understand why I love him now? It’s just like you and daddy. Remember when you told me you were more in love with him than the day you met, and each day your love grew stronger? It’s the same way for us. We have been together forever. I love him because he is my past and my present, he is my life. These past few days were obviously a crucial test for us, and we now know that we can’t live without each other. None of us know why, but that’s what we’re trying to figure out. I know this is crazy, but you know I’ve never been normal. You and dad did the best you could, but I was a nut job from the beginning,” I said, trying to lighten the mood.
My mom looked from me to Mark. “I understand, but I don’t know about everything else. This is a lot to accept, but I can’t deny what he did for you this morning. You looked like you needed to be hospitalized.”
“I guess I can’t keep you apart. Just understand that I’m your mother. I just want you to be safe and happy,” she said as she reached over and hugged me.
“I’ll let you guys stay and talk for awhile. I’m going to go finish my painting,” she said as she gave me one last quick hug.
“Mark, I’m sorry I called the school. I thought I was protecting Krista, it looks like I’ve lost that job,” she said a little sadly as she headed out the door.
“Mom wait,” I said, rising from my perch. “You will always be my mom and I will always need you. Just be happy that everything is going to work out,” I whispered in her ear as I gave her an out of the ordinary tight hug. I did not shy away from the emotions she was emitting; instead, I embraced them and cast them away. I was becoming quite proficient at fighting off the negative effects of mine and others emotions.
Sam and Shawn decided they were going to go for a walk when my mom retired to her art studio. Sam had most of her strength back and wanted some fresh air.
My recovery was a little slower. My body felt like it had been put through the ringer; the countless bouts of sickness this week had taken its toll. It was going to take me a little longer to recover.
Once we were by ourselves, Mark led me toward the couch and gently pulled me into his arms. He rained soft kisses along my jaw bone and up to my temple, leaving a heated trail where his lips had just been.
“I’m sorry you got so sick. I never imagined it would be like that if we were separated,” he said in my ear, making shivers of delight race up my spine as his breath tickled my ear.
He chuckled at my response. “Ahh, so you like that?” He said in a husky voice that could only be described as the sexiest thing ever.
I nuzzled my face into his neck; it felt so good to be in his arms again. I felt bad that we had hurt my mom by telling her the truth, but it was worth it for this. I could stay in his arms forever.
I sat up suddenly, just remembering something that I had been meaning to ask him. “What did you mean the other night when you said that the separation was also affecting you?”
He chuckled slightly, a little embarrassed. “Once our plane landed, and we were so far away from you, we would get these small bursts of rage. They weren’t directed at anyone, they would just come out of nowhere.”
“Shawn broke the door of our hotel room when it wouldn’t close right. He slammed it so hard that it split the wood down the door frame. I got mad for no reason and hit the rental car just before we left. It was hard to explain the dent to the rental company, but luckily I had bought the insurance for it. The rage didn’t fully leave me until I kissed you in your room. The separations are getting harder and harder. Shawn and I talked about it, and we don’t know why we could be separated all those years and not be affected. Yet now, we can’t seem to make it more than twenty-four hours without each other.”
I finally brought up what had been gnawing a hole through me over the past few days.
“The dreams have stopped,” I said quietly
“I know. I didn’t want to bring it up because I didn’t want to upset you, but I’ve had it on my mind also. For the first time in my life, I’m not dreaming about the Boardwalk at all.”
“Me either,” I said sadly as tears flooded my eyes, “I miss it already.”
Mark took my hand and lifted my chin so I could look in his eyes. He used his thumb to brush away a stray tear. “We may not have the dreams, but we have this,” he said as he leaned down and pressed the sweetest kiss on my lips. I felt a rush of heat flow through me and I wrapped my arms tightly around his neck. For a moment, we were one. Our hearts took on the same rhythm and beat as one.
We broke apart when we heard a throat being cleared behind us. Flushing slightly, I turned to see my mom standing in the doorway.
“Oops! Sorry mom,” I said.
“I was wondering if you could help me in the kitchen,” she asked.
“Sure,” I said, exchanging a look with Mark, she obviously wanted to talk to me alone. I sure hoped that she hadn’t changed her mind about letting me see Mark.
I followed her though the swinging kitchen door. We stood there for a minute, awkwardly.
“Why don’t we sit at the table for minute?” She eventually said.
The silence stretched in front of us.
“Mom, just say it,” I said, getting antsy from the silence as I patted her hand.
She finally plunged in. “I know you have these strong feelings for him and he seems to share those feelings, but I hope you decide to take it slow before you go too…” she trailed off.
Oh no, she was giving me the sex talk. I didn’t know whether to laugh or bury my head in embarrassment.
“I know you know about sex, but I don’t know if you know how personal it is. How sacred it is the first time….”
“Mom, I know it’s special, we’re not going to rush into anything. We have been so busy trying to figure out our past, we haven’t even made it to second base yet.”
She raised her eyebrows. “Yet?” she asked.
I laughed. “Mom, I love him. Eventually, we’re going to make it to second base, or I hope we do,” I said, laughing again at the look on her face.
“I promise we will take it slow. Truthfully, I always imagined myself waiting for my wedding night. I know that sounds old fashioned, but I’ve always wanted to save it for that special day.”
Relieved, she reached over and hugged me. “That sounds like a great idea.”
“I’m sure it does,” I said wryly.
She chuckled. “I’m your mom. You can’t blame me for wanting you to wait.”
I laughed with her, more out of relief that she was finally accepting Mark. I suddenly felt lighthearted. I hugged her for good measure and headed back to the living room. I found Mark lounging on the couch reading one of my favorite books. He set the book aside when I came back in the room.
“Everything is fine. She gave me the sex talk,” I whispered with humor.
“Oh!” Mark said, flushing slightly.
“What did you tell her?” he asked, pretending indifference.
“I told her it was too late. We had already done it,” I said mischievously.
“What?” Mark said in shock, jumping to his feet.
“Got you!” I said giggling, while I backed away as he began to advance toward me.
“You think you’re funny don’t you?” He asked as he reached out and caught me. I giggled as he carried me back to the couch.
“You almost gave me a stroke. I didn’t know if I should hit the door running in case your mom was coming after me with a shotgun.”READ MORE >>