Happy Valentines’ Day!

{This scene takes place after the ending of FEARLESS and before the beginning of BREATHLESS, in February of Tasmyn’s junior year.}

The Florida sun warmed my face as the wind whipped my hair back.  We had the top down on the Mustang as Michael drove the country roads that led us toward Sawood, Michael’s family nursery where we both had part-time jobs.

“So. . .” Michael almost had to shout to be heard above the wind.  “Tomorrow is Valentines’ Day.”

I narrowly avoided rolling my eyes. “Yup.”

“What do you want to do?”

I closed my eyes.  “Ignore the whole day and just get through it?”

I felt Michael’s sigh before I heard it. “Tas, it’s a day for lovers.  It’s a celebration of being in love. . like we are.  Let’s do something fun.”

I didn’t answer, and he turned down the gravel road that led back to the nursery and to his own house. We parked as we usually did in the driveway near the Sawyers’ beautiful cabin.  Michael pulled up the parking brake, turned off the car and shifted to look at me.

“C’mon,” he cajoled.  “What’s wrong with Valentines’ Day?”

I made a face and didn’t meet his eyes. “Oh, where to begin?”  I began counting off my fingers. “It’s a holiday invented by the card companies to make single people feel awful about themselves.  I’ve dreaded every single Valentines’ Day since middle school. Do you know how it feels to be the only girl in the class who doesn’t get roses delivered to her in the middle of class? Who doesn’t get asked to the dance? It was horrible.”

Michael draped an arm over my shoulder.  “But this year will be different.  You have me.  I have you.”

I refused to give in. “Yeah, that’s great for us.  But what about all the other girls who have to get through tomorrow without any love?”

He tilted his head considering, absently twining his fingers with mine. “Would it make you feel better if I had flowers delivered to all of our single friends tomorrow?  Would it relieve your guilty conscience?”

I shook my head.  “No.  That’s nice, but it’s not the same.  It wouldn’t make them feel any better.” I dropped my head to his shoulder and nuzzled his neck.  “But I love you for making the offer.”

Michael tightened his grip on my hand. “Okay.  So where does that leave us?” This is my first Valentines’ Day with a girlfriend–with the girl I’m going to love forever. I want it to be perfect.

We sat in the quiet of the woods as I considered.  A few birds twittered at each other from the tree tops, and I heard something rustling in the bushes near the deck.

“You know what?” I said finally.  “The truth is that every day we’ve been together has been Valentines’ Day for me–I mean, in the best way. So whatever you want to do tomorrow is fine with me.  I promise I’ll behave and I might even make you a card. Okay?”

He pulled me closer and covered my mouth with his own.  When I wasn’t sure where his thoughts ended and my own began, he leaned his forehead against mine and murmured, “I promise that every day, for the rest of our lives, I will make up for all your lousy Valentines’ Days. I love you, Tasmyn.”

Peace, love and romance~

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