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Secrets

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Secrets
by Jamie Yarbrough

Chapter 14

* one year later *

Kay blinked against the bright morning light. She groaned as she remembered what day it was, time to face the music she thought. At least it can't get much worse than it was before right she thought to herself. So much had changed in Harmony she knew. She had ordered the Harmony news paper and then found herself keeping in contact with the most unlikely source to tell her about life in Harmony, Noah.

Her older brother had understood her need to get away and had kept her new life a secret since he had found her six months before. He told her about Gwen and Ethan’s marriage and baby, Kay felt herself sick at that, she knew Theresa loved Ethan and Ethan her and she couldn’t imagine how Gwen had gotten to be Mrs. Crane. Kay knew she would have to sit down with Theresa and find out what the real story was. Simone had just finished her first year of school and was happy in New York. Jessica going to school, still dating Reese. Miguel and Charity wedding was set for the next week. And Luis. Luis was harder to get information about, he had spent the last few months traveling and had just returned to Harmony once again this time it looked for good. He had opened his own PI business with a little help from Sam.

Kay wondered what kind of commotion she would cause if she showed up at Charity’s wedding and decided that it would be better to go now then to take the spotlight away from them. She sighed as she pushed herself out of bed. She looked around the nearly empty room and thought of the life she was leaving. Kay’s job at the newspaper had her ex-cited when she got it but she grew weary of it over the months. Kay had been doing freelance articles and made a name for himself but she knew it was time to go back.

Kay walked down the hall and stepped into her daughter’s room. Ahnna Louisa Lopez-Fitzgerald, she was just three months old and Kay was exhausted. She knew she couldn’t keep Luis from his daughter, it had been bad enough these first months but Kay had struggled then finally decided to go home. Ahnna needed a father too.

Kay knew he would be furious at her hiding Ahnna from him and, Kay thought wryly, I trapped him in the end instead of setting him free even after I tried so hard. I still love him so much, but I still have no right to be with him. She felt the familiar pain in her chest and walked to pick up her daughter and feed her before they left.

Luis had hated every minute of the last year. He had never felt more alone. He had turned once to Beth for comfort but had found none there and had left her fuming and spewing curses at him. Sheridan had been a wonderful friend in the last year and Luis had been happy to see her and Hank grow closer.

He had been miserable since the minute he had awoken to an empty bed, he hated himself for not having taken the chance and asked Kay to be his forever, because now she never would be. He wondered at his luck to have found the woman he was meant to be with and then lost her so soon, his new business had come about in the last few months and it was growing rapidly, so he plunged himself into work each day just to make it through to the next.

Theresa wondered how she could possibly manage, she had bumped into Ethan and Gwen on the way to work with Luis that morning and she had hardly been able to stand the pain. Ethan’s eyes pleaded with her each time he saw her but Theresa refused to fight for him any longer, she could never take him away from his child. Ethan had tried to explain that Gwen had tricked him into meeting her one night and he had stupidly agreed, Theresa just nodded and told him sorrowfully that meeting and sleeping with her were two very different things and it was obvious she had never meant enough to Ethan to be his wife or his lover. Theresa had refused his calls for months after and finally he had just stopped trying. Gwen and Ethan had married six months before and Theresa took a job as a secretary at Luis’ new PI business and began taking courses through the local college in fashion and business.

She was miserable, school was easy and rarely fun, the job was a distraction and her nights were spent alone dreaming of what should have been. She had taken to sneaking out after Pilar had gone to bed and she would go to the bar out-side of town, no one carded her and she sat alone and miserable. She could still remember the night she saw Ethan there, she had snuck out for the first time just to get away from her own depressing thoughts and had walked until she found the Watering Hole. It was run down and Theresa would have never even considered going in if she hadn’t spotted Ethan’s car outside. She knew it was a bad idea but ducked inside anyway. She had watched him order drink after drink and looking as miserable as she felt until closing and then she watched him climb into his car and drive recklessly away. She had come back nearly every night since and hoped to see him again, but she only managed to kill some time and develop a taste for vodka.

It was only a week until Charity and Miguel’s wedding and the Lopez-Fitzgerald house was always busy and loud, Theresa slipped out the window as she finally heard her mother climb into bed. She felt completely reckless tonight, she wore a very short, very tight red skirt and heels and a sheer black blouse and tank top as she walked through town to the Watering Hole. She walked in and ordered a double shot, something she had never done before. That mornings encounter with Ethan was still fresh in her mind and all she wanted to do was numb the pain. She swallowed the drink wincing as it burned down her throat then ordered another as she walked to a small table.

Ethan couldn’t manage another night with Gwen, he had been making up reasons to be gone for the last six months, business trips, work for his father, anything to get away from Gwen and reminders of his mistake. He had no idea how he could have done what he did, the entire night was blurry in his mind, all he had been able to remember clearly was waking up in Gwen’s bed and being horrified. Now he was going to be a father and he was married to a woman he didn’t and could never love the way he loved Theresa.

Theresa invaded his brain ever night and seduced him and loved him and he thought he would go mad. He could never have her, he had ruined the one perfect part of his life and he would pay for his mistake for the rest of his life. He re-fused to think that his child was a mistake but his marriage to Gwen, his betrayal of Theresa and his loss of control. He walked into the run-down bar outside of town and ordered a scotch and asked for the bottle downing several glasses before he even glanced at his surroundings.

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