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Chapter Three

Stevie was the first to find words, “We’re taking the second path, Lindsey.” She announced matter-of-factly.

He nodded in agreement. He had already vowed not to loose Stevie if he had any control over anything. Plus, he couldn’t tell her no once she had made up her mind so determinedly.

Then she looked at him, “I’m scared. What if we don’t make it?”

“We will, I know we will.” He said without even thinking. He scooted closer to her, pulling her to him, trying to comfort her before she broke down into tears.

“I trust you.” She whispered finally as he rocked her back and forth. She had her uncertainties, but if Lindsey said it would happen, it would happen. He had said they’d get to LA, they did. He had said they’d make an album, they did. He said that he would take them to the top; apparently, he had or would. She had no reason to doubt him now.

Lindsey was deep in his own thoughts. It hurt him to know that they parted and that they had been put through so much. He didn’t care so much about what had happened to him, he could handle other break-ups. Besides, he only had true feelings for one woman, Stevie, no one else mattered. He was worried for Stevie. She could be so fragile – a china doll. A few failed relationships had the possibility of ruining her. He remembered after she had first joined Fritz, she broke up with someone. She moped and cried for months. And drug addictions… he hugged her tighter to him as if trying to protect her from whatever had hurt her the most, regardless of if she could remember it right then. “Angel, I’ll always be here, I love you.” He whispered into her hair, so softly she couldn’t even hear him.

After collecting herself, Stevie looked up at Lindsey. “I guess we should eat and then go find something to do?”

“That’s probably the best thing.” He helped her sit up and picked a blueberry muffin off the tray that had earlier been discarded on the nightstand next to them.

“What would you like my love?” He asked her, pushing a wisp of her brown-blonde hair out of her face.

“I guess a muffin as well,” she said.

“Right away.” He picked up a poppy seed muffin and handed it to her.

“Thanks,” she smiled weakly. He settled against the headboard and she leaned against him.

“So I guess we’re not going to have the sort of week we thought we were, huh?” Lindsey sighed as the words the voice had said settled.

“No, I guess not, I’m sorry. But it’s only a week. Think of it like last time we went to visit my parents, we couldn’t even kiss for real down there.” She tried to console him

“I know, but still.”

“Yeah,” Stevie said, turning her attention to the muffin.

“So, what are we going to do today?” Lindsey asked, not wanting her to get quiet on him all the sudden. Right then she was the only concrete thing he had.

“Hmm, good question. Maybe we could ask someone here what fun things there are to do? I don’t know.”

An hour later, the two were off to the main district of Paris. Because they were staying in a hotel mainly for tourists, they had no trouble getting directions for the short walk to the metro station. They took the train to the commercial center and then took a walk, all around the avenues and boulevards. Occasionally they would wander past a shop that held an article of interest to them. This particular boutique was more a high-end thrift shop. They meandered around the store until Lindsey saw something, a pair of platform boots.

“Hey, Steves, check these out!” He pulled her to the display. “Let’s see, you need a size six? Right?”

“Yes, but I am NOT wearing shoes that tall, those soles are like a foot thick!” She laughed.

“They’re only a half-foot at most. They’re tall enough to give you a respectable height.” He teased; knowing she’d think it was funny. She didn’t really mind being short, that is until someone confused her for a kid.

“Ha! Ha! Buckingham!” Stevie reached for the shoes, “I’ll at least try ‘em on I guess.” She slipped off her sandals and pulled the boot on. She tried standing, unsteadily, grabbing onto Lindsey for balance.

“Whoa there Stevie,” he looked her in the eyes. “What’s it like seeing the world like everyone else now?”

“You know, I’ll NEVER see it like everyone else!”

“I know, silly. If you’d wear your glasses more often that wouldn’t be a problem. But seriously, what do you think?”

“I think that I like them.” She teetered back to the chair and plopped down to remove the boots.

“Great, let’s get them then.” He was happy to see her find something she liked, and now that they had money, he wanted to get it for her, regardless of why they had the money; he didn’t have the brain process to figure it out.

“OK! But if I fall over and break my neck, YOU are taking me to the hospital.” She warned, trying to keep a straight face.

When he saluted “Ma’am, yes, ma’am” that was it and they both doubled over in hysterics. It had been a long time since they had been so carefree. They had no way of understanding how long.

Finished with that store, they leisurely walked up and down the area again, stopping for ice cream and soda. Arms linked, they made their way back to the hotel room around 3:30, planning on freshening up and changing before dinner.

Lindsey wouldn’t tell her where they were going the whole way to the restaurant. He kept looking away or stopping her questions with random thoughts. He wanted it to be a surprise.

“OK! Here we are!” He stopped abruptly at a tiny restaurant named La Belle et La Bete, or the Beauty and the Beast, Stevie’s number one favourite film since she had seen it at a festival with Robin while they were in college.

“Ooh!” Stevie clapped, “I love it already.” She pulled on his hand excitedly to go up the stairs. She paused to look at the menu posted in a lighted box half way to the door. “Uh oh, Lindsey.” She frowned.

“What’s wrong?” He looked at her. She was so happy two seconds ago. What changed?

“We need reservations.” She pointed to a line of text. She couldn’t speak French, but she could read it well enough to get the basic idea. “And we don’t have any.”

“Au contraire ma belle, we do.”

“What? How? You’re kidding!”

He grinned. He had seen the place on their earlier walk and called while Stevie was in the shower. He didn’t want to seem too sappy. She didn’t care that he didn’t answer her straight out, she threw her arms around his neck, bouncing like a child; too excited to do much but plant a kiss on his cheek. He laughed to himself at her reaction.

Soon they were seated at a table near the back. The table across from them had a white lap dog dressed in a black and red sweater. “Look Lindsey!” Stevie exclaimed, and forgetting the fact that twenty some years had passed, she added, “That looks like Ginny! We should have brought Ginny with us!”

Lindsey shook his head, it did look like Ginny had. “Boy, Stevie sure is wired tonight,” he thought.

After a lovely dinner, Stevie and Lindsey took a nice walk, slipping off the main streets to a small park overlooking the Eiffel tower. The leafy trees that surrounded the park bench they were on created a frame for the magnificent lights of the city. With Lindsey’s arms around her, Stevie felt so happy. The night had played out perfectly for the both of them. She couldn’t imagine how it could have been better. She nuzzled against Lindsey’s chest, “I love you, Linds.” She said, absentmindedly gazing out on the city.

“I love you too, Angel.”

“Look at the lights. They all seem like stars. It doesn’t seem like a city at all, but like we’re on a cloud, and those are the stars. They’re all so bright.”

“None of those lights are as bright as your beautiful eyes.” He murmured. She tilted her face up to kiss him.

They enjoyed the view for a while longer before returning back to the hotel and being as tired as they were from a long and trying day, they fell asleep as soon as they lied down.

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