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Save the Best For Last

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Save the Best For Last
by Fate

     

Part One

Theresa Lopez- Fitzgerald sighed contentedly as she sat down at her desk in the Crane mansion. After being Ivy Crane's personal assistant for over three years, the novelty of working in such a beautiful house had yet to wear off.

She absolutely, positively loved her job.

Mrs. Crane was a wonderful employer. She understood what it was like to be 21 years old, and the "responsibilities" that came with the age. School, friends, boys.

Well, maybe not the boy part. Since Theresa had broken up with her boyfriend of six years, Noah Bennett, almost a year ago, Theresa hadn't really done the whole dating scene. How could she, when she was head over heels in love with another man?

A man that had no inkling of her true feelings.

Ethan Crane was the epitome of perfection in Theresa's eyes. Ever since he brought her a pint of Ben and Jerry's Cherry Garcia ice cream at three in the morning the night that she and Noah broke up, Theresa had loved him. She would never forget him sneaking into the apartment she shared with Whitney Russell and stroking her hair while she cried. He told her that he was "in the neighborhood" and just happened to have this pint of her favorite ice cream with him.

She supposed she had loved him for longer than that, but after he held her tight all night, letting her cry on his shoulder, she realized why things with Noah hadn't worked out. Noah just didn't care about anyone but himself. Theresa wasn't really upset that she had broken up with Noah- thinking about it, they were together for so long out of convenience, not love- she was upset because the sweet, caring, silly boy she had fallen in love with her freshman year of high school had been replaced with a cynical, egotistical jerk. Theresa hurt for Noah, because he had so much
good in him, yet he chose to be an asshole.

She only started to realize what a jerk he was, though, when she saw what a good person Ethan Crane was. He was kind, funny, and compassionate. When his own long term relationship with Gwen Hotchkiss had gone sour, he tried his hardest to end things on a good note, making sure that Gwen was at ease without him.

So, Theresa saw no point dating guys that really didn't interest her. Ethan was the man that she loved, even though he was completely blind to the fact.

Theresa sighed again as she dug into the mound of paper work Mrs. Crane had asked her to sort through. What she wouldn't do to be with Ethan, to hear him say those three little words.

After awhile of sorting through the papers, Theresa felt a warm pair of hands slide over her eyes.

"Guess who?"

"Hmmm. let me see. could it be the overly amorous Mr. Crane?"

Her response received a hearty chuckle from the "mystery man".

"Um,
no."

The hands pulled away from her eyes, and there stood Ethan, beaming down on her.

"It's the madly in love Ethan Crane, coming to ask a favor from his best friend."

Theresa's heart fell as the words
madly in love echoed through her mind. For the past several months, Ethan had been talking about this amazing girl that he was crazy for. He wouldn't reveal her name to anyone, though, including Theresa, because she wasn't what the Cranes would deem as an appropriate match for Ethan.

Meaning, she was not wealthy. and the Cranes wouldn't be able to profit off a union between them.

At first, when Ethan had begun telling her about this girl, Theresa had let her hopes rise. After all, if Ethan Crane could fall in love with a girl from the "wrong side of the tracks" that meant she actually had a chance! Her hopes slowly deflated, though, when Ethan spoke of how much he loved this woman, and what he wouldn't do to be with her.

It was quite ironic, actually, because Ethan was in the same place Theresa was in. The woman he loved apparently had no idea how he felt about her. They were good friends, but Ethan was afraid that she would shoot him down. Theresa tried to be encouraging, but it was breaking her heart in the process.

"You need a favor, huh?" Theresa asked coyly, raising her eyebrows at him questionably. Ethan squatted beside her chair, an almost pleading look in his eyes.

"I need your help. Valentine's day is tomorrow, and I've decided to confess my love.."

Theresa sat there numbly as the words poured out of his mouth. He wanted her to go pick out the perfect gift for his dream woman?

Theresa didn't think it was possible or her heart to fall any lower, but at those words, it did.

After tomorrow, any chance she had with Ethan would be over.

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