Luis put his hand in his pocket and smiled. Soon he would ask
Sheridan to become his wife. Things had been moving along well over the past few weeks. Luis had all but moved
into Sheridan’s place, and it just seemed like the time was right. Luis walked into the Pool Hall. There she was,
pulling a beer for a customer. Mike was right. Business had picked up since Sheridan started working there, but
Luis wasn’t worried. Sheridan could handle herself.
"Hey, there, beautiful", Luis said as he walked up to the bar. Sheridan smiled, "Mister, you better
back off or I’ll have to call the authorities. My boyfriend’s a big time cop in this town." Luis asked, "Oh,
is he? Well, I’ll just be leaving then." Luis turned to walk out and Sheridan grabbed his arm. They smiled
at each other.
Luis asked, "What time are you leaving tonight? I can stop by and walk you home." Sheridan had a few
things to take care of and one big thing was weighing heavily on her mind. She needed to talk to Julian. "Actually,
I’m leaving in about half an hour. I’ll meet you at home later," Sheridan explained. Luis thought something
might be up but decided he better not press the issue.
"Julian. It’s me. We need to talk. Meet me at the cottage in an hour", Sheridan whispered over the phone.
Ever since that homeless man had handed her the envelope, Sheridan had been conflicted about its contents. She
had to find out what was going on before she could discuss it with Luis.
At the cottage, Sheridan met Julian. "Dear Sister, to what do I own this pleasure", Julian asked. "Cut
the crap, Julian. I know it was you", Sheridan replied. She continued, "You were the homeless man who
handed me this envelope earlier today. You may have thought you fooled me, but I could smell your cologne."
Julian looked surprised. "What ever do you mean? What envelope?" he asked. "You know perfectly well,
Julian." Sheridan argued. "The envelope with the very large cashiers check in it. I can only assume that
the cloak and dagger routine was to prevent Father from finding out that you were giving me money."
Julian answered, "If you ever speak of this to anyone, I will deny it." "Why are you doing this,
Julian? I am getting by just fine on my own." Sheridan proudly stated. "What…working at that dive?"
Julian replied. He continued, "That money is yours, Sheridan. Mother left it for you years ago and Father
knows nothing about it." Sheridan was shocked. She could do a million things with that money, but all she
could think of was the Clinic. She needed to talk to Luis. She kissed Julian on the cheek. "You may be misguided,
Julian, but you have a good heart. Thank you for being honest."
Back at Sheridan’s apartment, Luis was making dinner. Sheridan walked in to find Luis in an apron. "Hi, honey…I’m
home." Sheridan teased. "Where the heck have you been. I almost burned dinner." Luis joked, though
he was serious in his desire to know where she had been. "We need to talk, Luis. Something happened today,
and I had to go sort it out. You need to sit down, I think." Luis turned pale. He was sure she was going to
tell him she was pregnant. He wanted that more than anything, but he hadn’t even had the chance to propose.
"Sounds serious. Are you ok?" he asked. "Oh…I am better than ok." She replied. Now, Luis was
sure. "Wait, Sheridan, don’t tell me yet. There’s something I need to ask you." Sheridan forced him down
on the sofa and threw the envelope at him. "Just look at this first." She ordered. Luis opened the envelope
and saw all the zeroes. He was shocked. "What the hell is this?" he asked. Sheridan explained the source
of the money and how she had come by it.
Luis sat there dumbfounded, "Julian gave you this?" "Yeah, I know. Who would have thought? Imagine
all the things we could do with this money?" Sheridan said. Luis loved that she said ‘we’, not because he
wanted that money, but because she considered them a ‘we’. "We?" Luis asked. Sheridan smiled, "Of
course, Luis. What’s mine is yours, which leads me to my next point. I really want to use most of the money to
start the Clinic that Eve and I discussed. The neighborhood really needs it, and I can’t think of any better way
to spend this money. But, I want to know how you feel about it." Sheridan said.
Luis proudly replied, "I think it’s a great idea, Sheridan." This woman in front of him was the most
caring individual he had ever met. He wanted to propose right then and there. Sheridan continued, "I’m going
to ask Mike if I can cut back my hours at the Pool Hall so that I can devote some time to starting this Clinic.
Maybe we can get some space down the street. Imagine, I can just roll out of bed and be there in a few minutes."
Luis thought about this for a minute. "So what’s up with the special dinner?" Sheridan asked as she looked
at the table, perfectly set with candles and flowers. She just didn’t get it and Luis couldn’t explain it. In fact,
he couldn’t get a word in edgewise for the next hour as Sheridan rambled on about her ideas for the Clinic.
"You are quite the little cook, honey. One of these days, I am going to make an honest man out of you."
Sheridan joked, completely unaware of the impact of her remarks. They had discussed marriage and children, but
Sheridan thought it was a distant dream. Luis grinned. "Sheridan, let’s take a walk." He suggested.
They walked down to Lighthouse Park and stopped by a park bench. Luis was nervous. They sat down on the bench.
Luis asked, "You know how you were talking about how great it would be to be so close to the Clinic?"
Sheridan had no idea of where Luis was going with this. She nodded yes. Luis continued, "Well, what if you
didn’t live in that apartment anymore?" Sheridan was seriously confused and wondered what Luis could mean.
"Not live in that apartment. Why? Where would I live?" she asked. Luis suggested, "With me."
He pulled out the box from his pocket and knelt down on one knee.
Sheridan was shocked and tears began to fill her eyes. Luis asked, "Sheridan, will you marry me?" Sheridan
was so happy. She felt like such an idiot. That’s why Luis had made this big production tonight. He had been meaning
to ask her all night, and all she could do was ramble on about the Clinic.
She answered, "Yes, Luis. Yes. Of course, I would love to be your wife." Luis slipped the ring on her
finger and they hugged. They both couldn’t wait to begin their life together.