On the Waterfront
Sheridan looked out onto the water as the fog rolled into the harbor. Ever since that night on the Wharf, she had
been in a fog of her own. It was time to get on with her life, but she couldn’t stop thinking about Luis. Was he
thinking about her? She was so immersed in thought that she didn’t even notice the intense stare she was getting
from a stranger just 10 feet away.
Patrick Shaugnessey didn’t know this woman, but he knew that look in her eyes. It was the look of loss. He was
familiar with that look. He knew it all too well. His heart never recovered from his own loss so many years ago,
but he had to carry on for his family. He was glad to be back in Harmony. Boston had been good to him, but it didn’t
feel like home the way that Harmony did. Sure, there were painful memories here, but Harmony was home and something
was pulling him home.
Patrick counted himself lucky that he had been able to keep his family together over the years. Since his mother
had passed away, Patrick had been the caretaker of the family. Now the Shaugnessey boys were home and ready to
make a life for themselves in Harmony. It was all coming together. He looked at his watch. It was late. He needed
to get some sleep. Tomorrow would be a busy day at the hospital.
Patrick took one last look at this sad, beautiful woman and wished he could reach out to her. It must be the doctor
in him. He always wanted to heal people. He sensed that this woman wanted to be left alone. Still, there was something
about her big blue eyes that captivated him and reminded him of a time in his own life that he could never forget.
Sheridan had to pull herself together. Her cheeks were tear-stained, and her eyes were puffy. She reached in her
purse for her compact to assess the damage, but, as she pulled it from her handbag, it slipped from her grasp.
Patrick caught the compact before it fell to the ground. He handed it to a surprised Sheridan. She hadn’t even
noticed this man until now. How embarrassing! She must look like a raving lunatic to this person, she thought,
as grabbed the compact from his hand and made a hasty exit.
The Good Life
Luis helped Grace clear the table and started to wash the dishes. "You don’t need to do that Luis. You are
our guest. Sit down." Grace said. "It’s the least I can do, Grace. This is the third time you and Sam
have had me over this month." Luis replied. Sam motioned to Grace to let Luis go about his business. He knew
that Luis was miserable and keeping busy got his mind off of Sheridan. Luis looked out the window as he continued
washing the same plate over and over again. This is the life that Luis wanted with Sheridan. The simple life. A
house full of kids, dinners together, quiet evenings just talking together.
Grace and Sam talked quietly in the next room while Luis was lost in his own thoughts. "Poor Luis" Grace
said. "He looks so sad and alone. To lose such a great love must be awful. I’m glad that neither one of us
had to go through that pain." Sam kept quiet, trying to hide the guilt of not telling Grace about his past.
Grace thought to herself that there was so little she knew of her past. Maybe she had been in love before she met
Sam. If only she could remember.
The Pool Hall
Patrick had a good first day at the hospital, making the rounds with Dr. Eve Russell. He was glad to meet TC’s
wife. He remembered TC from the old days at Harmony High. Patrick glanced at his watch. He had to hurry if he was
going to make it to the old hangout to meet up with his brothers. Actually, it would just be Brendan tonight. Stephen,
or Father Stephen, as his parishioners would call him, would not be there. Patrick walked into the Pool Hall and
noticed Brendan chatting up some of the girls at the bar. Bren was always the life of the party, never a care in
the world. If only Patrick could trade places with him for just a moment.
Beth and Sheridan were playing pool at the corner table. "Beth, I can’t believe you talked me into this"
Sheridan said. She was glad for the company, and Beth had really been there to help Sheridan get through this time.
If anyone knew about the pain of losing Luis, it was Beth. She and Sheridan had a strong bond now, and Beth really
made an effort to get Sheridan out and about. "Quit your complaining, Crane, and take the shot. I didn’t teach
you this game so you could sit at home and knit." Beth replied.
Just then, Beth noticed Patrick walk in. She’d know Patrick anywhere. He looked just the same as when the family
moved away. She thought she recognized Brendan Shaugnessey at the bar, but the last time she had seen him, he was
about 12 years old. "I don’t believe it" Beth said. Sheridan popped her head up. "What? Am I that
bad?" Beth shook her head. "No. It’s the Shaugnessey brothers, back in Harmony." Beth answered.
Sheridan was puzzled. She noticed the two men at the bar. One man looked familiar. The man with the piercing green
eyes. He was the man from the pier the night before.
Beth explained "The Shaugnessey boys lived in Harmony years ago. There were five brothers: Patrick, Stephen,
Brendan, Bryan, and Michael. See that cute guy at the bar? Well that’s Brendan. I actually baby sat for him and
his younger brothers. And, the guy next to him is the oldest brother, Patrick." Beth paused and lowered her
voice. "Anyway, it’s a sad story. First the mother died in a horrible hit and run accident. Michael, the youngest,
was just a baby at the time. Their father tried to keep it together, but he started hitting the bottle and really
made a mess of his life. Patrick had to step in and raise those kids. Then Michael got Leukemia. He was in and
out of the hospital. Everyone in town was pulling for Michael. When he died, Patrick was devastated. He moved the
rest of the family to Boston to keep them all together while he went to medical school."
Sheridan listened to Beth’s every word and was overwhelmed by this story. At that moment, she realized how lucky
was. It really put things into perspective, she thought. Her pain was nothing compared to what this family had
been through. She was one of the lucky ones. She vowed to turn her life around and focus on the good things. Just
then Luis walked into the pool hall.
It was inevitable. In a town the size of Harmony, they would run into each other. After all the obstacles and the
misunderstandings, Sheridan and Luis decided to call it quits. Still, it hurt each time they saw each other. They
agreed to be friends, but there were so many unresolved feelings. It was tense every time they saw each other.
Brendan was walking towards Beth and Sheridan with a big grin on his face. "Well, if it isn’t little Brendan
Shaugnessey here to wreak havoc on his old baby sitter" Beth said. "Oh…so you recognized me, did you?
I had this whole pickup line ready for you. I wanted to see your reaction when you figured out who I was."
Brendan replied. "Oh please, Shaugnessey. I remember your old tricks." They gave each other a big hug.
Patrick joined the group and stood next to Sheridan. Beth reached out and hugged him. "Hey Patrick. Welcome
home. It’s great to see you guys. Where’s the rest of the gang?" she asked. He replied, "Stephen, or
rather Father Stephen, is at church tonight, and Bryan is still in Boston at college." Beth sighed, "Stephen,
a priest? Now that doesn’t surprise me. I guess he is filling in while Father Lonagan is away." Patrick nodded.
Beth asked, "What about you and Brendan? What brings you back home?" Patrick answered, "I just started
at the hospital today. I am a doctor now. And Brendan is a…" "I’m an EMT" Brendan interrupted. Beth
replied, "An EMT? Now that doesn’t surprise me either. I remember I had to call 911 on more than one occasion
when I was looking after you. Let’s see…there was the time you convinced Bryan to swallow a quarter and then the
time you super glued your hands together and the time…" "OK, Beth, I think they get the picture"
Luis was ordering a drink at the bar when he glanced over and saw the Shaugnesseys talking with Beth and Sheridan.
He heard they were coming back to town, and he was glad to see them. He wanted to catch up with Patrick and Brendan,
but it would have to wait until later. He couldn’t face another awkward moment with Sheridan.
Brendan noticed Luis at the bar. "Hey Lopez-Fitzgerald. Get your ass over here." Luis was embarrassed,
but he walked over to the group. Sheridan wanted to give him his space. This was really his place and his crowd.
Beth grabbed her hand and wouldn’t let her leave. Patrick noticed that Sheridan was uncomfortable, but he didn’t
Luis walked over and shook Brendan’s hand. "Well, if it isn’t Brendan Shaugnessey." Luis said. Brendan
explained "This guy taught me how to play baseball back in junior high. He was a Freshman and I guess I must
have been in seventh grade. Remember that, Luis? Right before we moved away." Luis remembered. Luis had always
looked up to Patrick and Stephen who were both older. When the family was going through the rough times, Luis stepped
in to help out Brendan so that he wouldn’t get mixed up with the wrong crowd. Luis shook Patrick’s hand. "Good
to see you man." Luis said. Patrick had been a role model for Luis. He really took care of his family and
put their needs before his own.
Sheridan watched as Luis talked to Patrick. Brendan jumped in "Hey, Beth. We haven’t met your beautiful friend."
That remark snapped Luis back into the moment. ‘Who was calling his Sheridan beautiful? They better back off!’
Luis thought. ‘What was he thinking? He had no claim on Sheridan’. Luis realized. Beth replied, "This is my
friend, Sheridan." Sheridan was glad that Beth always introduced her as ‘Just Sheridan’. Since severing ties
with her family and moving out of the cottage, she wasn’t sure who she was anymore. "Sheridan, I would like
for you to meet Brendan and Patrick Shaugnessey." Beth said. "Actually, we have already met." Patrick
stated. Sheridan was embarrassed as she remembered the events of the night before. ‘Oh please don’t mention the
compact’ Sheridan thought. She was flustered and blushing. Luis took this as a bad sign. Could Sheridan be falling
for Patrick Shaugnessey, Luis wondered. Sheridan answered "Of course…on the Pier last night. I never did thank
you…" she trailed off.
Luis interrupted "So, Patrick. What are you doing back in Harmony? Married? Lots of kids, I bet." Luis
had to make Sheridan see there was no chance of a relationship with Patrick. "No, actually, still single.
Work keeps me pretty busy these days." Patrick replied. Luis felt physically sick. He wanted the best for
Sheridan, but it had only been a few weeks since they had decided to part ways. He wasn’t ready for her to move
on, even with a stand up guy like Patrick. "So what are you doing these days, Pat?" Luis asked. "He’s
a big shot doctor," Brendan replied. Luis was crushed. Successful, caring, available…and he and Sheridan had
already met each other before.
Just as Luis was going to ask about this encounter, Sheridan cut him off. "Well, I better let you guys catch
up. It was nice to meet you, Patrick, Brendan. Beth, I’ll see you tomorrow." Sheridan said. "Goodnight,
Luis" she said, as an afterthought. Beth followed her, "I’ll go with you, Sheridan, you shouldn’t walk
home on your own." Oops…had Beth just said that? Luis wasn’t supposed to know that Sheridan had moved out
of the cottage and severed all ties with her family. Luis was confused. Beth explained "Sheridan left her
car at my place. We came together." Sheridan really owed Beth for concealing her secret. She had been a good
friend. Luis didn’t need to know what was going on in Sheridan’s life. Sheridan begged Pilar, Theresa, Ethan and
Beth not to tell Luis that she had moved to a renovated warehouse on the Pier. So far her secret was safe.