Theresa watched as her son slept in his crib. He was growing up fast, and she knew life, as a mother would only get harder. She had watched her mother when she was growing up, the gentleness she had with each of her children. None of them were bad, but they were all very confused in their lives. Luis and Antonio were both still in love with the same woman, a woman who still wasn’t sure who she loved. Miguel was marrying his best friend, and although things looked better from him, she knew what being a teenage parent was all about. His life would be harder however, because he didn’t have the benefits of the Crane money. Paloma was so far removed from the family, Theresa wasn’t sure the girl would ever come home for a visit. She knew that Paloma’s life had been good, but it lacked the family that the girl wanted. Looking back at her son, she wondered what his life would be like, and if he would one day hate her for giving him such a complicated life.
“He’s a handsome child.” A voice spoke breaking Theresa’s thoughts. Turning quickly she saw Julian standing in the doorway.
“Julian.” She frowned. “You scared me.”
”You were very deep in thought.” He spoke walking into the room. “I’m sorry I startled you.”
Theresa smiled up at him. “I was just thinking about Martin.”
“Yes, I figured as much.” Julian nodded. “You’re good with him Theresa. I’m not sure if I’ve ever said that, but its true.”
She was shocked at Julian’s words. He had changed so much since finding out Chad was his son. “Thank you Julian.”
“I’ve failed him, but I would like to change that.” Julian frowned. “I’m not much of a parent, ask any of my children,” He sighed. “But I would like to be in his life.”
Theresa swallowed her mind racing as she looked into the sincere eyes
of Julian Crane. “I’d like that.” She managed forcing a smile.
“Eve says my children deserve a father, and as usual she is right.”
The smile that came to Julian’s face as he spoke Eve’s name couldn’t be missed. His face seemed to glow as he thought about her, and Theresa knew why. “You love her don’t you Julian?” She questioned.
“I won’t deny it.” He smiled. “I’ve always loved Eve.”
“Julian Crane in love.” Theresa smirked. “That’s something I never thought would happen.”
“She’s a wonderful woman, and our son, he’s much like her.”
“Chad is a good man.” Theresa agreed. It had been a week since she had kissed Chad, and her mind had not left him. They had talked, but never brought up the kiss they had shared. She was unsure of what she felt, and didn’t want to assume anything.
“I’ve saw the two of you sharing glances across the table at dinner.” Julian smiled. “You two seem to be very close.”
“Well we are married. “Theresa mustered looking away
“Theresa, I know all to well that marriage doesn’t mean love.” Julian informed her. “I also know that you and my son have a foundation that can be built on.”
“Julian Crane giving me advice on love?” Theresa teased. “I’m starting to get scared.”
Julian merely shrugged at her comment. “Call it, free advice.” He offered. “Let love happen, don’t try to force it.”
“Force it?” She asked dropped her head. “You mean the way I did with Ethan?”
“I’m simply saying, sometimes you simply need to sit back and let things happen on there on.”
“Wow, Eve really has cast a spell on you hasn’t she?” Theresa laughed her mind whirling at the words Julian had spoken. “When did you start liking me?”
“Theresa, you gave birth to my son, and you married the other.” He grinned. “I believe you have grown as a woman, and I respect that.”
“Thank you Julian.” Trying to gather herself she moved her hair from her face. “I like this new side of you.”
“You can thank the good doctor for that.” Julian spoke as he looked down at his son. “She is helping me be the man I want to be.”
“I hope you two can find your way back to each other Julian.” Theresa whispered. “A love like that, it’s priceless.”
With an honest smile Julian nodded. “Indeed it is Theresa. That is one
thing we can agree one.”
He watched her as she looked through the bridal magazines. Her brown hair fell down in her face as she flipped through the pages. He had never saw a pair of blue eyes sparkle like hers did. There was something about the girl, he couldn't put his finger on it, but something made her stand out. As he strolled over to her, he watched as her eyes lifted and made contact with his.
"Ms. Bennett, how nice to run into you again." He smiled.
"My name is Kay." She spoke glaring at him. "And I'm assuming you didn't just happen to run into me, considering the fact that you've been staring at me for ten minutes."
Fox Crane smirked. "You caught me. How could I not stare at such a beautiful woman?"
Kay smiled. "A beautiful, pregnant woman.” She corrected.
“Yes, Chad told me you were expecting, you and your boyfriend must be very happy.”
“Very.” Kay nodded.
Fox took a seat in front of her, his eyes still staring at her. “You and your boyfriend, you’ve been together for awhile?”
Kay glared a Fox; with a huff she closed the magazine she was looking
“Miguel and I have been best friends for years. We know each other and we love each other. What we have is very special.”
“So that’s a yes? You’ve been together for a long time?” Fox smirked.
Kay rolled her eyes, “Why do you care?”
“It was a simple question.” Fox shrugged. “From what I’ve heard at the house from Theresa, you are both eighteen? That’s young to start a life and a family together. I just assumed you two have been together for a long time.”
“Its our business.” Kay stated firmly her eyes wavering away from Fox as she fidgeted with purse.
“Am I bothering you?” Fox questioned picking up on Kay’s nervousness. He could see that she was uneasy which only made him even more curious. “Was it something I said?”
“My relationship with Miguel is very complicated.” Kay sighed lowering her head. Taking a deep breath she slowly began to feel calm again. “I’ve loved him most of my life, and now that we are together everything is going to be fine.”
“I see.” Fox nodded.
Watching Fox she frowned, he wasn’t budging. He was a stubborn Crane and he wasn’t leaving until she had answered him to his satisfaction. “Miguel and I were not together when I became pregnant. He was dating my cousin, but it was a very complicated situation. He had feelings for me, but he was with her.”
“He cheated on her with you?” Fox asked growing even more curious.
“Like I said it’s complicated. He found out I was pregnant on his wedding day to my cousin. After that he decided he wanted to be with me and our child.”
“Miguel didn’t propose to me out of obligation.” Kay quickly spoke easing back in her chair. “We share something, and its growing everyday. Not that it’s any of your concern, but Miguel and I are ready for our future.”
“And where does that leave your cousin? Out in the cold?”
Kay rolled her eyes again as she stared at Fox. “My cousin is practically a saint. She’s this perfect person who stepped aside because it was the right thing to do. She was heartbroken, but she has people around that will help her.” With a bare whisper she looked down at her stomach. “She has my mother.”
Fox could see the pain that had formed in Kay’s eyes. It was pain he knew all too well, and suddenly he understood her a little more. “Your mother took your cousin’s side?”
With an angry laugh Kay glanced back up at him. “My mother would have been happy if I had of left town with my child and never came back. She still wants Miguel and Charity to get back together and leave me out in the cold. Since the day my cousin came to town, I became a after thought to her.”
Tapping his fingers on the table Fox watched Kay. Taking a chance he looked at her and spoke. “And you would do anything to get back at your mother, and your cousin right? Including take your cousin’s boyfriend?”
Slapping her hand down on the table she shot Fox a look that sent chills up his back. “You don’t know anything about my life.” She growled her voice rising as she stood from her chair. “Why are you asking me these questions anyway? I did not go after Miguel as some sort of revenge. I love him! I loved him before Charity came to town and I never stopped. If my perfect cousin hadn’t showed up I would have been with Miguel anyway.”
“Perhaps I overstepped.” Fox spoke standing up to face Kay. “Forgive me for upsetting you, it wasn’t my intent.”
“Just what was your intent?” Kay questioned crossing her arms.
“Relax.” Fox smiled. “A few days ago I saw a beautiful woman walk into my brother’s studio. He told me she was pregnant and engaged, but I’ve always believed that until the ‘I do’s’ have been said, a woman is fair game.” He watched as Kay dropped her arms and lifted her head, her face softening.
“Oh.” She whispered. “Well I am taken, and I’m not fair game.”
“But you are my kind of woman.” Fox grinned. “If you want something, you get it.”
“I never said that.” Kay argued.
“You didn’t have too. With a wink he smiled brightly. “We’re two of
a kind Kay Bennett. Like it or not, we have a lot in common.”
Jessica Bennett walked into her mother’s shop and smiled as she saw her cousin sitting at the counter. Her cousin was pale, with dark circles under her sad eyes.
”Charity, how are you doing?” Jessica asked as Charity turned her head toward her cousin.
“Jess.” She smiled weakly. “I haven’t seen you around lately.”
Jessica dropped her head. “Yeah, guess I’ve been busy.”
“With Kay?” Charity questioned. “I saw you two together the other day. I was passing by the Book Café and saw the two of you talking.”
“Yeah, we’ve been busy with plans.” Jessica spoke with a sigh.
“Plans for the wedding.” Charity answered. “I know Kay and Miguel are getting married next week. News travels in this town. I just didn’t realize you and Kay had become so close.”
Jessica stepped back as her eyes lowered to look at the floor. “Charity we really don’t have to talk about this. I came in to see how you were doing, not talk about the wedding.”
“You’ve worked things out with her haven’t you?” Charity asked. “Aunt Grace said you hadn’t but you have.”
“She’s my sister.” Jessica spoke her eyes meeting Charity’s “And I love
“Of course.” Charity frowned. “No, its good that you’ve worked things out, really.”
Smiling Jessica decided to change the subject. “Well Kay isn’t the only person I’ve been spending time with. Reese and I have been spending a lot of time together. He’s so great.”
“That’s wonderful Jess, I’m very happy for you.” Charity spoke with a smile.
“You deserve to be happy too Charity.”
”If you’re going to suggest that I should start dating, don’t bother. I’m not ready for that yet.”
Jessica nodded her head, “Well when you are, can you let me know?”
“I’ve missed you Jessica.” Charity sighed. “After your father kicked Aunt Grace out, things just haven’t been the same.”
“Well that’s her fault.” Jessica grunted her eyes narrowing. “After the stunt she pulled, I don’t blame daddy.”
“But to just kick her out?” Charity questioned. “You really think that was the best thing?”
“She was leaving with David, the only reason she didn’t was because Kay spoke up. What David did was terrible, but mother had already chosen him. What did she think daddy was going to do?”
“Aunt Grace had been tricked, David had played with her emotions and he made her love him.”
Jessica shook her head and looked at Charity, “How can you say that? David didn’t make my mother love him. She did that on her own. She was the one that felt the feelings and decided to walk out on my father. David might have tricked her, but he wasn’t in control of her feelings.”
“We don’t agree on this.” Charity frowned. “I suppose we don’t agree on a lot of things now.”
“Other things?” Jessica asked moving her hair off her shoulder, “What other things?”
“Do you believe Miguel really loves Kay? That those two belong together?” Charity whispered her voice soft.
“I believe they are falling in love.” Jessica answered without hesitating. “I would have never believed it before, but now I do. I know you love him Charity, and you shared something very real with him, but he does love her.”
“And you don’t think she forced him to love her?”
“No. I don’t believe my sister forced him to feel what he does for her.”
“What about all those times you said Kay tricked him?” Charity asked with a frown. “Do you still believe that?”
Jessica stood silent for a moment, unsure of how to answer her cousin’s question. So many questions still filled her mind about her sister, but she didn’t dare speak of them to Charity. “I believe that if my sister did anything, it didn’t make Miguel feel what he does.” She finally answered. “Kay is nothing like the person she once was, and Miguel he’s very different too. Whatever they feel, they feel because they want to now.”
“Well.” Charity said lowering her head as she sat back down. “I guess we’ve all changed. Nothing will ever be the same Jessica, not for any of us.
Chad stood by his car, watching his wife walk down one of the paths at the estate. She was smiling, her brown hair hanging loosely on her shoulders. She wasn’t dressed as she normally dressed; instead she sported a medium length black leather jacket, and a pair of old jeans. It was the Theresa that he enjoyed seeing, and it was the Theresa he had kissed a week ago. He walked toward her, snow crunching under his feet as he followed the path she had walked in. They had talked about business, talked about Martin, but they still hadn’t spoke of the kiss. He knew he had to bring it up, because Theresa never would. She was so down on love, and he understood why. Life hadn’t been fair to her, but then again, it hadn’t been fair to him either.
“T.” He called out as she stopped near a old tree. “T wait up.” He watched as she stopped in her tracks, and turned to look at him. A smile gently slipped on her lips as she saw him.
“Chad, hey.” She spoke almost in a whisper as he finally neared her. “I didn’t realize you were behind me.”
“Its kinda cold to be taking a walk isn’t it?” He asked watching as she crossed her arms, almost as if she was going into a protective mode.
“The Lopez-Fitzgerald’s love winter.” She smiled. “Everything about it has always been so much fun for us.”
“Your family has always been close like that huh?” Chad questioned.
She nodded her head. “Yeah, we didn’t have a lot of money, but we had each other.” Frowning she dropped her head, “Well until Papa left, and Antonio disappeared.”
“You had your brothers.” Chad smiled.
“Yeah, but I missed having a sister, Paloma was sent off and I always wondered what it would’ve been like to have her here.”
“Did she ever come to visit?” Chad asked as they walked along the snowy path.
“I remember once.” Theresa smiled. “We were younger, I think I was twelve.
She came to stay for a week, and it was really strange. Miguel and I, we were already very close, and of course we both adored Luis.” She sighed. “Paloma was jealous of that, and we, we were jealous of her.”
“Jealous how?” Chad questioned.
“She had a good life.” She frowned. “Good clothes, all the toys I wanted and never got. Tia Maria was able to give her a wonderful life, all the things Mama couldn’t afford to give us. Back then, I was a child, a very petty child.” Theresa shrugged. “So we just didn’t get along.”
“You wanted what she had, and she wanted what you had.” Chad nodded.
“Typical of children I guess.”
Theresa smiled. “Typical of a child like me, one who dreamed of having all those things.”
“But you and Paloma talk now right?” Chad quizzed.
“Yeah, we’re older now, and I understand that what I had was so precious. I had my family, and Paloma didn’t. Lately I’ve just been wondering how Mama could decide to send Paloma away. How a mother could pick one child and send it away.”
“She did what she had to do.” Chad frowned. “You know that T.”
“I know why she did it.” Theresa sighed. “I just don’t know how.” Stopping in the middle of the path Theresa looked up at Chad. “I’m a mother now, and I could never give Martin up. When I thought I was going to loose him to Alistair, it almost killed me. I know I wasn’t a good mother when I was pregnant, but Chad, that’s my child and I could never send him away.”
“He’s your only child, and you’ve never faced what your mother faced.”
“Still.” Theresa frowned. “I know it would have been hard on us. One more mouth to feed would have cost me a few new dresses, but I would have had my sister.”
“You could always bring her back to town now.” Chad smiled.
“I tried.” Theresa smiled. “But she’s still in high school and she loves it. She’s popular and has a boyfriend that she’s always raving about. She fits in and she’s happy.”
“What about you T?” Chad questioned turning to face her. “Are you happy?”
“Me?” Theresa questioned. “Yeah, I’m fine.”
“You know, we’ve been walking around a certain matter that I think we need to talk about.”
Theresa bit her bottom lip, “A matter? You mean business? Something wrong with our plan?”
“Not business T.” Chad smiled touching her arm. “Us.”
“Us.” Theresa whispered. “You mean the kiss.”
“Yes T, the kiss.” Chad spoke. “It meant something to me Theresa, and I just wondered if you felt the same.”
Closing her eyes a tear ran down her cheek. “I, I can’t talk about this Chad.” She whimpered moving away from him. “I need to go check on my son.” She finished as she pushed past him and ran down the path that lead to the house.
“T, what’s going on with you now?” Chad frowned, shaking his head as
he followed behind her.
Julian Crane stood staring at his small son, who stood in his crib,
his brown eyes piercing back at his father. “I’d pick you up, but I might
break you.” Julian spoke. “You see I’ve never been good with children.
I have many, but I didn’t raise any of them really.”
Martin cooed at his father swinging his arms in the air. A smile came to Julian’s face as he watched to boy. “Your mother and I, we’re going to work some things out. I’m going to try to be a father to you, but you’ll have to be patient with me.”
“Up, up.” The little boy spoke looking at Julian.
“I believe your son wants you to pick him up.” A soft voice spoke from behind them.
Julian’s face lit up at the words as he turned to see Eve, watching him, a smile on her face. “Eve, darling.”
“He only says a few words.” She laughed walking into the room. “Theresa gave me a briefing on his speech a few days ago. When he wants out of his bed, he says up.”
“And he wants me to hold him?” Julian questioned.
“You are his father.” Eve smiled.
“Yes, yes I am.” Julian agreed. “But I’m not good with children. I dropped Ethan once when he was a child.” He frowned. “He was squirming around, and he just slid from my arms. It didn’t hurt him, but the poor boy wouldn’t go near me for a week.”
Eve couldn’t help but laugh, “You won’t drop him. Go on Julian, get your son.”
Nervously Julian lifted Martin out of the crib and into his arms. The little boy giggled as he looked up at his father. “Hello son.” Julian spoke staring at the boy.
“See, he didn’t break.”
“No, no he didn’t.” Julian smiled. “And he’s not crying.”
“Of course not.” Eve said patting the little boy on the back. “I always knew you could be a good father.”
Julian dropped his head. “Many times I’ve wondered what kind of father I would have been to our son Eve.”
“You would have been a good father Julian, but we can’t look back. Now that we have Chad, we must go forward.”
“I suppose your right.” Julian nodded. “I do want to go forward Eve, with you.”
Eve swallowed, taking a step back as she felt her heart flutter. “Julian, please.” She whispered.
“I love you darling, and when you’re ready, I hope you’ll see we belong together.”
“I, I don’t know what to say.” She managed.
“Don’t say anything, just think about it.” Julian spoke, moving closer
to her as he shifted his son. Slowly he brushed a kiss on her cheek, and
then moved away. “I still believe in us Eve, and I know deep down so do
With a smile he walked past her, his son in his arms, leaving her to digest his words.
“Oh Julian.” She whispered, sitting down in the wooden rocking chair
near the crib. “I believe too, God help me, I still do.”
Kay Bennett got out of her car and looked at the old house in front of her. Her father had called her while she was at the Book Café and told her to meet him at the house.
”There you are.” Her father spoke, as he walked onto the front porch, Miguel behind him.
”What’s going on?” Kay questioned staring up at her father and Miguel. “Why did you want me to meet you here?”
Sam smiled as Kay walked up on the porch. “You’ve always been nosey.”
“And bossy.” Miguel added. “You have a need to know issue.”
“Yes, and I need to know now.” Kay laughed.
Sam smiled. “You don’t remember this house do you?”
Shrugging Kay looked around. “Didn’t your father own it at one time? You told me once he use to rent it out.”
“Yeah.” Sam nodded. “And now I own it, he left it to me when he died.”
Kay looked at her father, a confused look on her face. “I just assumed you and Uncle Hank sold it.”
“No, I decided to hang on to it.”
“So why are we here?” Miguel questioned. “You said it was a surprise, but you never said what the surprise was.”
Sam looked at his daughter and then back at Miguel, “Are you sure you want to marry him?” He asked.
“Yes daddy.” Kay smiled.
“Well.” Sam spoke. “You two are a week from being married and have no home. I know I should let you do all of this on your own, but I can’t. You’re both young, and I can’t let my daughter live in some horrible apartment. So, I’m giving you this house.”
“Daddy are you serious?” Kay gulped.
“Chief Bennett, I can find us a place, you don’t have to do this.”
”It needs a lot of work, but it has three bedrooms and plenty of space. Its old, but I think you can be happy here.”
Kay looked up at Miguel and then grabbed her father and hugged him. “Daddy, thank you so much.” She squealed. “I can’t believe you’re doing this.”
Sam pulled away from his daughter. “Well, this isn’t the life I wanted for you.” He frowned. “Married at such a young age, a child on the way. I wanted more for you, but this is how it is. I expect both of you to stay in college, and maintain jobs as well. Your bills, are your bills, but the house is a gift.”
“We won’t let you down.” Miguel spoke shaking Sam’s hand. “I’m going to be a good husband to Kay, and the kind of father our child deserves.”
“I hope so Miguel.” Sam nodded. “Because this is my little girl.”
“Daddy, We’ll be ok.” Kay promised hugging her father once more. “I’ll always be your little girl.”
“Yes you will.” Sam laughed kissing her forehead. “Now I’d love to show you the place, but I have to go back to work. You two can check things out and decide what you want to do. Jessica has a few things at the house that we bought for the baby, you can call her and have her bring them over when you’re ready.”
“Thank you daddy.” Kay smiled. “For everything.”
“I’m just being your father.” He laughed gently as he turned and headed to his car.
Kay turned back to see Miguel holding his hand out to her, “Do you want to look at the house?”
“Are you kidding me?” Kay laughed yanking Miguel inside the empty house.
“Of course I do.”
The living room was large, the walls painted a dull gray. Wrinkling her nose Kay turned to look at Miguel, “We must repaint.”
“The color isn’t bad.” He smiled. “But if you want to repaint.”
“Yes Miguel I want to repaint.” Kay laughed. “Maybe just white, or we could go with a nice pastel color.” She suggested. “Come on lets go look at the kitchen. If I’m right this place has a nice dining room too.”
“What about the bedrooms?” Miguel teased wrapping his arms around Kay.
Smacking him on the shoulder she rolled her eyes. “Mind out of the gutter Lopez-Fitzgerald. Of course I do want to pick out a room for the baby.” With a grin on her face she added. “And we have to start working on the nursery.”
“In time.” Miguel laughed. “We have plenty of time to do that.”
“I know.” Kay pouted. “But there’s so much to do.”
“First we have to get married, once that is done, we’ll worry about the nursery.” Miguel spoke moving his hand to her face. “You know, I’ve always loved the way your eyes light up when you’re happy. They just sparkle.”
“I’m happy, because I’m with you.” Kay smiled taking his hand. “This is our home Miguel.” She whispered. “The place we’ll live with our child.”
“Our children.” He corrected her. “You do want more than one right?”
“Let me have this one first.” She laughed. “Then we’ll talk about more.”
“You’re the boss.” Miguel teased pulling her toward him. “You’ve always been the boss.”
“Someone has to be.” Kay smirked. “Why not me.”
“You’re one of a kind Blue Eyes.” Miguel whispered.
”You haven’t called me that in years.” Kay sighed melting into Miguel’s arms. Resting her head on his chest she took in his sweet smell. “I’ve missed it.”
“I’ve missed a lot of things.” Miguel admitted.
Looking up at Miguel, Kay’s eyes locked with his. “I love you.” She
spoke in a bare whisper. Brushing his lips against hers Miguel spoke no
words. He didn’t have to speak, because Kay knew. Miguel was falling in
love with her, and if luck was on her side, she was finally going to have
everything she had ever wanted.