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You've Got Mail Passions Style - Part One
by JSP

     

Chapter 6

Luis stared at his keyboard for a few minutes while contemplating exactly what he was going to write to KC. He hated seeing men use women. He didn’t know for sure what was going on with KC’s fiancé, but what he did know didn’t sound like it was above board. Everyone is entitled to one mistake, but two? How could a man leave his fiancée sitting in the same restaurant twice? As he thought about it, her friends seemed to make sense. There seemed to be a reason JL didn’t want to be seen with her in that restaurant. Maybe it was the cop in him that was seeing a problem where there wasn’t one. Maybe JL was just ignorant to other people’s feelings. If that was the case then he definitely wasn’t the man for KC.

KC’s friends had seen it too, however. They were the ones that put together the pieces that led them to discover it was that restaurant that JL didn’t want to go to. That was the part that really made no sense to Luis. Why would he keep agreeing to take KC there and then not show up? Why not just say ahead of time he didn’t want to go there? No, there was something not right about this guy.

Luis decided to go for broke. He hated to see KC hurt and wanted to let her know. She may never want to hear from him again, but if there was something not right about this guy, she needed to find out about it before she married him. He began to pound furiously on the keyboard.

A short time later Luis finished typing his email to KC and reread it. He shook his head and frowned. He hoped everything would work out for her. Slowly, he clicked send and his message disappeared right before his eyes. He let out a weary sigh. On the exterior no one would have ever guessed that his insides were a mess. There was no way Luis could even begin to explain how he was feeling because he had no idea. The only thing he knew, was it was a very uneasy feeling and he didn’t like it, not one bit.



Sheridan finally managed to tear herself away from the chat room. After Pezz had left, the "girls" had discussed the best places to see in London with Godis and KC exchanging notes. BabyShuis and CAdreaming, both of whom hadn’t been there were delighted listening to the two travelers.

Somehow Sheridan hadn‘t really been into the chat this morning, even though she‘d been quite excited about the idea earlier. She kept telling herself it had nothing to do with Pezz‘s sudden disappearance after the info about her having a fiancé leaked out. Maybe it was the thought that her cyber pals thought Jean Luc was cheating on her, an idea she’d not even entertained until tonight. Her head told her she should listen to her friends, but her heart... Yes, what did her heart tell her? She wasn’t sure. A month ago, she wouldn’t have believed any of this, but now? There were so many inconsistencies, she just couldn’t stop thinking about it.

Before signing off, Sheridan decided to check email one more time. She smiled nervously when she saw she had a message from Pezz. She wasn't sure what he was going to say or do after the exhibition in the chat room earlier. She was glad that he hadn’t been scared off. Or had he? Maybe this was a good-bye email? Her mind was a whirlwind. Taking a deep breath, she opened it up and began to read.

Dear KC,
I have to tell you I was pleasantly surprised to see you in that chat room tonight. You were the last person I expected to see in there. I guess when you said you were getting up early to do something, I assumed it was to go shopping or move furniture. I never thought of a chat room! LOL.

I know I probably wasn’t supposed to see a lot of what was being discussed in there, but I couldn’t help it. I’m sorry your fiancé is causing you so much pain. No man should ever treat a woman like that. I know there is a saying "Love hurts" but as far as I am concerned it shouldn’t have to.

KC, believe me when I tell you I hope JL is telling you the truth and it’s all just temporary while he gets what ever business he is doing under control. However, please listen to your friends and at least check out his story. I’d hate to see someone as nice as you endure any more heartache. I know I probably have no right to say this and if I am out of line tell me and I’ll never bring it up again, but from what I’ve heard tonight, it seems as though this is something you need to look into.

You mentioned once you’d love to move back to the small town you were born in, but circumstances wouldn’t allow it? Is this JL your circumstance? Don’t answer that if you don’t want, just think about it.

All I’d like to see for you is to be happy with whatever decision YOU make. You deserve a man who will love you unconditionally and treat you with respect. If you want JL to be that man, then I hope he turns out to be on the up and up. If you are unsure, then I suggest you check him out and make sure.

I hope I haven’t upset you. That wasn’t my intention. I just don’t want to see you get hurt any more than you already have. If you ever want to vent, or need someone who will listen, please don’t hesitate to ask. I have very broad shoulders.
Take Care,
Pezz

Sheridan sat there, dazed at the words she’d just read. No one had ever written her a letter like that before. Sure, her father and brother were always telling her men weren’t good enough for her, but they were referring to the amount of money in their bank account and the color of their blood, nothing more. If they’d cared at all about her, they never would have tried to marry her off to the countless number of aristocratic snob sons of business associates.

Why did this man that she barely knew seem to care about her happiness? Most people she would fear had an ulterior motive, but she sensed that Pezz genuinely cared about what happened to her. What was it about this man that she’d never met, didn’t know his name or where he was from that had her thinking about him more often than her own fiancé?

Maybe the girls were right. Maybe Pezz was right. Didn’t she owe it to herself to find out for sure if Jean Luc was the man she thought he was? Sheridan decided that tonight was the night. She was going to follow him and see what kind of business he really had to attend. She sent Pezz an email telling him of her plans. She’d email Godis and BabyShuis after she found out this was all a wild goose chase.



Luis looked at the clock on the wall and frowned. "She’s late" he muttered to himself. "What could she possibly want at this hour anyway?"

The only call he’d received so far tonight related to police business was from Mrs. Johnson looking for her son. All other calls had been from a member of the department either calling in from patrol, calling from home checking on their schedule or personal in nature.

He took a sip of his coffee and made a sour face when he realized how old it was. "This coffee was probably made by me before I left earlier today." He was still half asleep when he arrived earlier and didn’t notice. Now that he was awake, it was unpalatable. He walked over to the break room and decided to make a fresh pot.

Sipping on a fresh cup of coffee Luis continued to watch the clock. Time continued to pass and still no Beth. If it hadn’t been the middle of the night he would have called her at home, but he didn’t want to wake her family up. Having had enough of this waiting game, he decided to email Jay.

Once logged on to the net, he decided to read his mail before he wrote it. There was one message for him from KC. He smiled to himself. "I guess I didn’t scare her off, not yet anyway."

Dear Pezz,
First of all I should be the one apologizing for that little scene in the chat room. I never intended to burden you with my real life troubles. I enjoy our emails and the last thing an email friend needs is to hear about all the misery in another person’s life. I appreciate your offer of a shoulder to cry on so to speak. You’d better watch what you say to me because I might just take you up on it. ;-)

I’ve done a lot of thinking about what the girls said in the chat room and what you said in your note. Even though I don’t believe it, I am going to find out the truth one way or another. JL is a creature of habit in some ways and the one thing I know about him is he always stops off late every afternoon for a glass of wine at a little bistro on the left bank. He took me in there with him a few times when we first started dating and the maitre’d made a comment pointing out this habit. Thinking back JL seemed uncomfortable at the time with its mention.

I’ve never played the part of James Bond before, spy extraordinaire so this should be interesting. Do you think I should wear a wig or disguise or something? Should I confront him if I do find him involved in something shady?

I’m getting silly now aren’t I? There won’t be any need for confrontations because I know this is all going to be just a foolish misunderstanding.

Well, I guess I’d better go plan my strategy if I am going to transform into a spy tonight. Maybe if all turns out like Godis and Baby think it will I’ll move back to the States. Back to that sleepy little N... Wait a minute! I just figured it out! You live in New England! That’s it isn’t it? HA! I get it now.
Sleepy little New England town.

Thanks for everything Pezz. Having you there as a friend means a lot to me. We are friends aren’t we? I don’t know what else to call you. Even though we’ve never met, I feel you are a better friend than those closest to me. Strange, huh?

Take care,
KC

"Friends, yeah" Luis said reading her words. "I like the sound of that." Luis couldn’t keep the Cheshire cat grin off his face at the thought of KC considering him her friend. He reread the letter several times and for some reason decided to print it. Luis already had saved all emails from KC into a file, but he’d never admit it to anyone.

He had to laugh at her figuring out his "sleepy" clue. Honestly he never thought she’d get it. "I wonder if this means she’s from New England? Wouldn’t that be something if she ended up splitting up with her fiancé, moved home and she lived only a few hours from here? I might actually get a chance to meet her?" Luis was getting more excited by the minute. The prospect of meeting KC ... "Luis, do you hear yourself? You’re crazy! For starters, she’s an engaged woman and you have a girlfriend. Not to mention the fact you have no idea who she is or where she’s from. She could be an axe murderer for all you know." Luis stopped his monologue for a moment and thought about what he was saying. "Look, she’s just a friend who needs some support right now. I should probably warn her to be careful if she’s going to go into James Bond mode. If the guy is as slimy as I suspect, who knows what he’ll do if he catches her spying on him."

Luis hit the reply key and began typing. He pushed everything else out of his mind at the moment except KC’s letter.



An hour and a half late, Beth came walking through the front doors of the police station followed closely by Hank. Luis’ radar immediately went up when he saw Hank come in with Beth.

"Hi Luis" Beth greeted with a nervous smile. Hank said nothing, he just stood there with his hands in his pockets fidgeting anxiously.

"Beth" Luis acknowledged suspiciously. "Hank, what are you doing here at this hour?"

"I came with Beth" was all that Hank said.

"Since when does Beth need an escort?" Luis asked. "This is Harmony not the combat zone."

"Luis, there is no easy way to say this, so I’m just going to say it. I’m leaving. I received a job offer and I’m moving to New York City, tonight."

Luis expected a bomb, but not this. "Beth, are you saying you’re leaving me? You’re leaving our relationship after ten years?"

"What relationship Luis? We’ve been dating for ten years now and that’s it. At one time early on I thought we had a chance, but after your father disappeared you pulled back. You keep using the excuse you need to take care of your family and I respect that, but your brother and sister are almost grown now and you still won’t make a commitment to me."

"Beth, I had no idea you felt this way" Luis said in all sincerity. It was true, Luis never thought about his relationship with Beth in those terms. He’d convinced himself long ago that his family came first and everything else was secondary.

"Luis, let me ask you a question. Do you love me?"

"Of course I love you Beth" Luis said without thinking.

"No Luis, I mean do you REALLY love me? Are you in love with me?"

Luis stopped to think about that one. What is the definition of being in love anyway? What was that that Jay had said to him the day before?
Be HONEST with yourself Luis - which makes your heart beat faster, the thought of seeing Beth or reading a new email from KC? If this was a definition of love then he would have to say he wasn’t "in love" with Beth. For that matter, now he was pretty sure he’d never really been "in love" with her.

Luis just looked at Beth unable, unwilling to hurt her by telling her the truth. But how was he going to get out of it? "Luis, don’t answer that, please? Your silence and the sad look in your eyes is all the answer I need."

"Beth, I..."

"Luis, I asked you to please not say anything. Hank is going to drive me to New York and stay with me for awhile until I get settled." She walked up to him and handed him a piece of paper. "Here is my new address and phone number in case you ever need it."

"Are you sure you want to do this Beth?"

"Luis, you know I’ve wanted to get out of this one horse town for quite awhile now. Well, the time is now. I’m leaving and I’m not looking back. Take care of yourself Luis."

With that, Beth lightly kissed Luis’ cheek and turned to leave. "I’ll make sure she’s ok Luis" Hank assured his friend. Luis nodded and watched the two walk off into the night. Beth was now out of his life for good. He’d spent the last ten years of his life being faithful to this woman and she just left him with no notice. He knew he should be feeling pretty bad about this right now, but if the truth be told, all he felt was relief.

n e x t

       
     

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