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To Make Her Smile

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To Make Her Smile
by Fate

     
Chapter Sixteen

Theresa slowly entered the chapel, her heart pounding. What was going on?

She walked down the aisle, gazing at the chapel that she had so painstakingly planned, from her own dreams. It was perfect, just like her fantasies. The gardenias and pale pink sweetheart roses created a light fragrance. The flowers were everywhere: on the pews, on the floor, everywhere. Hundreds of candles dotted the room, unlit.

"How sad," Theresa murmured to herself. Not sad that the wedding hadn’t taken place, but sad that such a beautiful room wasn’t put to use. She collapsed on the front pew, spent from the past few days.

Suddenly, the door to the chapel flew open, and Chad sauntered in.

"Theresa!" he exclaimed, stopping in his tracks.

"Chad...what’s going on?" Theresa sounded lost.

"Huh? Girl, I thought you were in Miami, wimping out."

"I was...but I changed my mind. I couldn’t give Ethan up without a fight, not after everything’s that happened."

Chad grinned and plopped down beside her.

"That’s my girl. You came back to fight for your man!"

"Yeah... Chad, why isn’t anyone here? Did something bad happen?"

Chad shook his head and sighed.

"Theresa, it’s so sad. Ethan was in love with someone else and called of the wedding."

Theresa felt her heart take a nosedive. So much for coming back to win Ethan. Somebody else had beaten her to it.

"Who.. who is she?" Theresa asked tearfully, not meeting Chad’s eyes. Chad almost laughed. Right. Like Ethan could ever
love anybody but Theresa. It was like the girl was always saying: they were fate.

"Theresa...he loves you."

Theresa looked up, her entire body trembling.

"Eth...Ethan loves me?" she whispered, not trusting her voice to say those words. After everything, Ethan loved her?

"It’s you, baby. You know it’s always been you!"

Chad pulled Theresa in for a bear hug. Tears flowed freely from Theresa’s eyes, all of her anguish and heartache melting into joy.

"Where is he?"

Chad’s face fell a little.

"Um....Miami?"



"Ok, Ethan. Now, explain something to me. Why on Earth would Theresa be in Miami? Oh, wait- this IS Theresa we’re talking about. Who knows how that girl’s brain works."

"I don’t know, Whitney. All I know is this."

Ethan and Whitney were in the Crane jet. Could it have been less than a week since Ethan had whisked Theresa to New York? Ethan chuckled slightly, he was so dense! How could he have ignored the fact that he loved her?

Ethan had asked- well, rather BEGGED Whitney to come with him, since he was sure that Theresa wouldn’t want anything to do with him once he arrived in Miami. The plan was to get to the airport before her scheduled arrival and greet her at the gate. Well, Whitney would greet her. Ethan would cower back until he felt the time was right to talk to her. Getting Whitney to come hadn’t been easy, but since Theresa was involved, she had given in. Ethan hadn’t revealed anything about what was going on, though, only that Theresa had ran away.

Ethan handed Whitney Theresa’s letter to her family.

She skimmed over then angrily slapped it down. "Ethan, this is crazy! Like Theresa even knows anyone in Miami. How did she get this job? And why didn’t she tell me?"

"I have no clue as to the how of it Whitney, only the why."

Suddenly, Ethan felt hopeless. Tears began to flowing down his face. Never in his 25 years had he cried. After all, Crane men didn’t cry. Whitney’s face softened at the sight. She put a comforting arm around him.

"Sssh, Ethan, it’ll be ok."

Ethan shook his head.

"Whitney, this all my fault. If only I wasn’t so stupid..."

Whitney pulled back.

"Ethan, what are you talking about?"

Ethan let out a deep sigh and began.

"Well, see, Theresa had been so depressed recently, so I took it upon myself to cheer her up. How was I supposed to know that I was in love with her? All I wanted to do was to make her smile!

"Well, Gwen realized I had feelings for Theresa before I did. So, she asked if we could move the wedding date up. I agreed. I told Theresa, and later that evening, I got a letter from her saying that she wouldn’t be attending the wedding. I was so confused! I had to talk to her. She begged me to leave, but I wouldn’t. Then, just as upset as she could be, she screamed at me that she couldn’t bear to watch the love of her life marry somebody else."

Whitney just stared at him. Theresa actually told Ethan her true feelings for him?

"Then what?"

"I- I kissed her. It was so amazing, like nothing I’d ever felt before. And then I ran away."

"Why?"

"Because I was scared. These feelings I was having...I had never felt so alive, so FREE. Then, this morning, I woke up, and I knew. I’m in love with Theresa. So I called her house and left a message. Gwen overheard, and we called off the wedding. Then, I ran to her house, and found the letter."

Whitney sank back into her chair, letting what Ethan was telling her sink in.

"You love Theresa?" she asked. Theresa had been right the whole time. Theresa, the girl with her head eternally in the clouds, was right.

"More than I ever thought possible. She’s brought me to life. Just seeing her, or hearing her voice, or even just hearing her name...that can completely make my worst days into one of my best. How could I not love her?"

Whitney stared at him, and saw something that she had seen dozens of times but had blown off. Whenever Ethan spoke of Theresa, his entire face lit up with happiness, like a kid on Christmas morning. How could she ever of ignored it?

"Wow, Ethan, I’m so happy for you. I’m so happy that you’ve found your true love."

"Yeah. I just hope she’ll want me," Ethan said glumly, sinking lower into his seat.

"I wouldn’t even worry about that, Ethan. What I would worry about is, if Theresa wasn’t home to hear the message, who’s going to hear it?"

Ethan bolted out of his seat.

"Oh my God!" he yelped.

Could this day get anymore traumatic?



"So your saying that everyone in my life has basically lied to me that past year. Oh, wow, Sheridan, this is just great."

Luis was pacing across the living room floor in fury. Everyone that he loved, everybody that he trusted had been deceiving him.

Never had he been more miserable.

"Luis..."Sheridan murmured, "You have to understand this. Ivy offered Theresa a great job, a way to save money for college. This was a job tailor made for Theresa. And in the process of working for Ivy, Ethan and Theresa became friends. And you know the saying, Luis: best friends make the best lovers."

Luis shuddered at the thought of Theresa ever being anybody’s lover.

"Ooops, sorry Luis. Wrong saying. But you get my drift. I mean, really, Luis, I know you hate my family, but come on. Ethan is nothing like Julian or Alistair. He’s kind and sweet, and very loving. He has nothing in common with rest of the Cranes, except his last name. Cut the guy some slack, and let Theresa experience her first love."

Luis pondered what Sheridan was saying. Maybe she was right. Maybe it was time to let Theresa go.



"Miami? Ethan went to Miami?"

Chad nodded, and Theresa’s jaw dropped. How could this be happening?

"Oh, no!"

"Yeah, and he took Whitney with him."

Theresa nodded. Hmmm. There was nothing really to worry about anymore, seeing that Ethan really was in love with her.

She dug through her purse, and found her cell phone. She dialed it and handed the phone to Chad.

"Get her out away from Ethan so I can talk to her," Theresa hissed. Chad waved her off. What was Theresa doing?



"Hello?"

"Whitney."

"Hey Chad, what’s going on?"

"Listen, I need you to move out of Ethan’s hearing range."

"Huh, are you crazy?"

"Come on, Whitney, just do it."

Whitney sighed. Chad Harris was so annoying!

Whitney got up and walked to the restroom.

"Chad?"

"Whitney."

"Theresa Lopez- Fitzgerald. What are you doing? Why are you with Chad?"

"Well...please don’t get mad, but I decided not to go to Miami."

Whitney sighed. Theresa...what was she ever going to with that girl?

"I’m not mad, Theresa. But why are you talking to me? Shouldn’t you be talking to Ethan?"

"Well, actually, I need your help..."

n e x t

       
     

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