The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club: Ending

Sitting under the umbrella, Sarah watched her husband help Wyatt build a sand castle.  Wyatt had Henry’s bright blue eyes and Sarah’s blond hair.  She loved watching her son’s wispy curls sway in the wind as she heard him giggle.  Her eyes lit up with love at the sound of her son’s giggle.  He turned two years old a month ago and Sarah loved every moment, milestone, and hiccup that motherhood brought. Henry and Sarah had a sweet life and they both were enamored with Wyatt.  Sarah loved watching Henry and Wyatt together.  Wyatt loved his daddy and he would follow Henry everywhere.  Giggling and telling him stories which no one could understand but Henry had conversations with Wyatt and they understood each other perfectly.  It was the sweetest thing to watch.  Henry picked up Wyatt and brought him back under the umbrella.  Wyatt hugged his mom and Sarah cuddled him in her arms.  Henry watched them together and thought he couldn’t love any two people on this earth more than he loved his wife and son.  Wyatt fell asleep in Sarah’s arms and she gently laid him down on the blanket under the umbrella.  She nestled next to Henry as they lay next to each other feeling the sun, wind, and love surround them.  Sarah kissed Henry and gently played with his hair.  “Guess what?” she whispered into his ear.  He leaned into her, kissing her, and letting his hands explore her body.  “What?” he laughed as she swatted at his hand as he tried to untie her bikini top.  “Henry, I love our family of three but we are going to now be a family of five.” She looked into his eyes as she watched his reaction to her news.  “Two!  We are having 2 babies!” He kissed her and they both laughed until they were crying. Then Sarah turned serious as reality and fear hit her at once. “Henry, we are having twins.  Am I up for this?  Are we up for this?  We will need a new house.” She kept talking and Henry wrapped her in his arms.  She always felt safe in his arms and he calmed her soul.  “Sarah, you are an amazing mother and together we are incredible parents to Wyatt.  We are about to embark on a new journey.  We have each other. Awww…Sarah!  I love our life and you and Wyatt and now our new babies.”  Wyatt woke up crying from his nap.  Henry picked him up and wrapped both Sarah and Wyatt in his arms.  Sarah already loved the two souls in her belly and she knew they would make it through this next chapter in their lives.

Surrounded by wrapping paper, toys, icing in her hair, and their three beautiful children curled up in her lap, Henry laughed as he watched them giggle and play.  Sarah laughing and giggling right along with them.  Henry imprinted this memory into his heart as he had never seen Sarah look as beautiful as she did sitting there in jeans and a t-shirt celebrating the twins third birthday.  He laughed as he picked up Elizabeth and James and hugged them tight.  Sarah watched as the twins hugged their daddy and then squirmed to get down to play.  Henry put them down and watch them run off to play with Wyatt and all the new toys.  Thankfully, all of them got along with each other and Wyatt was an excellent big brother.  Sarah stood up and giggled as she saw she was covered in icing from head to toe.  Sarah looked at Henry’s mischievous grin and smacked him playfully on the behind as she went into the kitchen.  Her phone vibrated in her pocket.  She picked it up and looked at the message.

Sarah, you look so beautiful.  Let’s make a date on the beach tonight after the kids are in bed.  Mom can watch them. 

She grinned and replied back to him.

Sounds wonderful.  It’s a date. 

She put the phone back in her pocket and then felt it vibrate again.

Let’s get naked. Love you.  Henry

He could still take her breath away after three children and their busy lives, she loved him more than she ever thought was possible.  She replied.

Can’t wait.  Let’s get naked.  Love you.  Sarah

All of Henry’s family came to celebrate the birthday of the twins and to help Sarah and Henry as they moved into their new home.  A perfect home complete with 6 bedrooms, a big yard, and a short walk to the beach.  Sarah felt so thankful for Henry’s mother and hugged her tight when she offered to bathe the children so Sarah could escape with Henry for a little while.  Sarah walked down the short path to meet Henry.  He had a blanket, two glasses and a bottle of wine.  They held each other as they listened and watched the ocean.  Both of them savoring the quiet moment.  She stared at her husband’s profile in the moonlight and she gently caressed his face with her fingers.  Henry took Sarah’s face into his hands tracing the curve of her face and kissing her lips gently.  She moved her body into his and she whispered into his ear. “Let’s get naked” They both laughed as their clothes came off and their bodies melded together in passion and in love.

Their life was busy and full of play dates, sports, dance, juggling schedules for doctor appointments but Sarah loved their life and enjoyed every moment with her family. The diner and The Thursday Morning Breakfast club became a constant in Sarah and Henry’s life.  The children always had someone to dote on them and to also offer gentle discipline when needed.  Henry had found a publisher and his first book would be published in the spring.  He was writing a series of children’s books based on his adventures from when he was a child playing on the beaches of Plemont as well as his adventures as a dad with his own children.  Sarah felt such pride as she watched Henry read his stories to their children and they sat mesmerized by the adventure as well as his ability to bring character’s to life by using different voices.  They would giggle or cling to each other in the suspenseful parts.  Henry was a remarkable dad.  He was the perfect combination of love and discipline.  Sarah felt blessed as she listened to her husband’s voice saying good night to each one.

Wyatt sprinted to the mailbox every day looking for his acceptance letter to USC in California and he prayed he would receive a scholarship to play football.  It was Wyatt’s senior year and he was valedictorian of his class.  He worked hard and earned his spot as one of the top quarterbacks in the region.  So many colleges had been knocking at his door but USC is where he dreamed to go.  He grabbed a Coke, ran out to the mailbox and opened it and shifted through the letters.  He saw the postmark from California and his heartbeat quickened.  He managed to make it back in the house as he handed the letter to his mom.  Sarah looked at the excitement and nervousness in her son’s eyes.  My goodness she thought.  Where has the time gone?  Wyatt is graduating from high school and heading off to college.  The twins are freshman in high school. It seems like yesterday when she was changing diapers and wiping noses.  Now she was preparing herself to send her first born to college.  Henry came in from the family room and they all stared at the letter.  Sarah finally took a deep breath and opened it.  “It is our honor and pleasure to welcome Wyatt Arnold Shaw to the University of Southern California on a full football scholarship…” “Yes!! Woohoo!!” yelled Wyatt as he picked up his mom and hugged her tight.  Then he fist pumped his dad and they hugged each other.  Sarah had tears in her eyes and Henry walked over to her and brought her into his arms.  Both of them felt such joy and pride for their son had made a dream come true but a twinge of sadness tugged at their hearts as they realized he would be moving across the country.  Elizabeth and James walked in from school and joined the celebration.  “Group hug” they all cried as they came together as a family.

The twins were enjoying their sophomore year of high school and Wyatt was excelling as a student and as a quarterback for USC.  There was talk about Wyatt being good enough to possibly go to the NFL.   Sarah and Henry were able to visit Wyatt and see him play.  They were impressed with how amazing he was and cheered him on from the stands.  On their most recent visit, Wyatt introduced them to his girlfriend, Julie.  Sarah and Henry adored her and she fit right into their lovely family.  As Sarah and Henry were leaving to go home, Henry took his son in his arms and hugged him tight.  He spoke with such pride and love. “Wyatt, I am so proud of the man you have become.  Your mom and I love you so much.” “Awww…thanks, dad!  I couldn’t have asked for better and cooler parents.  Love you both.” They hugged and Wyatt drove his parents to the airport.

The house was silent except for Henry’s snoring and Sarah tossed and turned.  She got up and went outside onto the balcony.  The sound of the phone ringing startled her.  It was late.  She looked at the alarm clock and it said 3am.  Her heart was beating fast as she grabbed the phone.  Henry stirred beside her and sat up as she answered.

“Hello.  Yes, this is Sarah Shaw.  Yes, my husband is with me. What has happened?  Who is this?”  Sarah instinctively grabbed Henry’s hand.  Henry turned on the light and as he turned he saw Sarah’s face turn white as she dropped the phone on the bed.  She screamed.  “Sarah, what is it? What is it?”  She couldn’t answer.  She could only scream.  No words.  Henry took the phone.  He listened on the other end.  Dear God.  This is not happening.  “Mr. Shaw, I am so sorry to have to tell you this.  But your son was killed in a motorcycle accident tonight.  A drunk driver pulled out in front of your son and killed him instantly.” Henry couldn’t comprehend what the dean of the school was telling him.  He heard your son was killed and that was it.  He put the phone down and fell to his knees.  Sarah crawled to him as they both clung to each other.  They stayed that way for a long time.  Neither one of them knowing how to comfort the other one.  Elizabeth and James came into the room crying from fear because of their mom’s screams and their dad’s crying.  As Henry told them the news, they all clung to each other.  No one wanting to let go and each one of them wanting time to go back to the way their life had been just a few hours ago.

The day of the funeral for Wyatt had arrived and the church pews were filled with friends, family, the Breakfast club, college roommates, professors, administrators, the football team from college and high school, coaches and it overwhelmed Sarah.  But also made her strong and she was comforted by all the love for her son.  She wanted to run and hide.  She wanted to disappear.  How was she going to make it through this day?  How was she going to make it from now on with her sweet and dear Wyatt?  Henry, Elizabeth and James kept her going and gave her the strength to get up each morning.  But today she was saying good bye to her first born.  As she prepared herself to go into the church, she held onto Henry’s hand.  She saw the hurt and loss in his eyes and in her children’s eyes.  She couldn’t take away the pain and her own pain was so overwhelming.  She prayed for strength.  As they walked through the back doors of the church and Sarah saw the casket with her baby in it, she felt her knees buckle.  Henry grabbed her.  “Sarah, it is going to be ok.  Hold onto me.” She held on for dear life.  But she felt herself become angry with Henry as he told her it was going to be ok.  She thought to herself.  How the hell am I going to be ok?  How are we all going to be ok?  That’s our baby in that casket.  She wanted to scream and to hit something.  This anger invaded her body fast and she pushed Henry away with her hand.  She steadied herself as the ushers rolled the casket into the church and the family took their places in the front pews.  Wyatt’s favorite music played.  The pastor spoke.  Then it was Sarah’s turn to speak.  “Are you ok to do this?” Henry whispered.  “Stop asking me if I am ok.” She harshly whispered back.  Henry’s face looked shocked and Sarah knew she hurt him but she held onto the anger because it helped her get up to do the hardest thing she would ever do as a mother.

“Wyatt Arnold Shaw.  My first born.  I already miss you like crazy.  I remember your first word.  Mama.  Your wispy blond curls when you were two.  I hated to have to cut those curls.  You gave the best hugs and always had a caring heart.  Wyatt, so many people are here because you touched so many lives with your generous spirit.  I will miss your laugh.  You are named after a brave and gentle soul so I know that Arnold is there to greet you.  My parents are also there to help you on this next journey.  Be brave my sweet Wyatt.  Know that we love you and will miss you.  Wyatt, I will miss you.  Love you.”  The tears were flowing and Sarah had no more to give.  Henry walked up and helped her back to the pew.  Henry went back up to the front to speak about his beautiful son.

“My first born.  How excited your mom and I were when you made your way into this world.  I didn’t know how much love my heart could hold until my children came into my life.  Wyatt, you were an amazing son.  I loved you from the very first moment I saw you.  I will miss your laughter and playing football with you in the backyard.  Our late night talks and your famous chocolate shakes.  God, please take care of my son.  I love him and miss him very much.”  Henry’s eyes filled with tears and he walked back to the pew.  Sarah played the part but she still felt such anger.  Anger at the drunk driver that took her son, anger at her son for getting on a motorcycle, anger at Henry for telling her it was going to be ok and anger at God for taking her son.  She felt guilty for being angry and she felt guilty for wanting to just run and hide.   But she also felt comfort from Henry’s strength and from her children’s courage.  As the casket was lowered into the ground, she held her family tight as the tears flowed from all of them.  They walked back to the church clinging to each other and hoping for relief from this awful pain and loneliness.

A few weeks had passed and life seemed to be returning to normal.  The twins were back in school and getting back to dance and soccer.  Sarah and Henry delved into work.  Henry lost himself in writing his books and Sarah kept busy with the diner.  They both kept busy with the twin’s schedule.  Neither one of them spending too much time alone with each other and each one not sure how to help the other.  Sarah had become distant since Wyatt’s funeral.  Henry’s family had come to visit and to help out.  Sarah felt herself easily agitated so she stayed away as much as she could so she would not let her anger show.  She felt lost and felt guilty if she felt happy.  She played the game of pretend really well but she was exhausted.  Tired of pretending.

She was in the kitchen preparing dinner with Henry’s mom.  Marianne took her hand and told her to sit down.

“I don’t want to sit down.  This is my kitchen and I will do what I want.  Why don’t you leave me alone so I can make dinner.” Sarah snapped back.  Henry walked into the kitchen and witnessed the moment.

“Sarah, mom is trying to help.  What is wrong?  Are you ok?” Henry walked over to her.

“Why do you keep asking me if I am ok?  Are you ok?  How can I be ok? Our son is dead.  He is not coming back.  I just want to cook dinner.  I just want to be left alone.  I want my son back.  I want my beautiful baby to come running through those doors and hug me.  I want people to stop asking me if I am ok.”  Sarah screamed at Henry.  The tears burned her eyes and she ran out of the house.

“Sarah.  Mom, I am so sorry.  It has been so hard for all of us.” Henry hugged his mom.

“Henry, it is going to be hard for a long time.  Go after her.  She is hurting.  You both are.  Your love is strong.  Find a way back to each other.”

Henry hugged his mom tight.  “Mom, I love you.  We will be back in a little while.  If the kids get hungry, order a pizza.”  Henry took off out the back door and down to the beach.  He knew exactly what he needed to do.

He found Sarah sitting in the sand and he walked over to her.  She was crying and pounding the sand.

“Don’t try and tell me it is going to be ok.  Don’t try and comfort me.” Henry held her as she tried to fight his hold.

“Damn it, Sarah.  Stop!  Listen to me!  I lost him too.  I hurt every day!  But our love is strong.  Think about Wyatt.  He would want us to move on and to be happy.”  Henry stood up and lifted Sarah up.  He led her to the ocean.  Her tears were blinding but she continued to fight him.  They walked out into the ocean and he turned her so she was facing him.

“Sarah, it is ok to be angry.  Let it out.  Scream!  Shout it out! Let’s both do it!  Let’s let it all go!”  Both of them shouted to the ocean and to the heavens.  Exhaustion finally set in and they clung to each other.  They walked back onto the shore.  Sarah spoke. “Henry, I am so sorry.  Our hearts our broken.  Please let’s not lose each other in grief and anger.   You are right.  Wyatt would want us to love, live and be happy.”

“Sarah, I love you.  And I promise we will make it through this.  We just need to remember to lean on each other.”  They walked back to the house.  It was quiet.  Marianne left a note on the kitchen counter.  She had taken Elizabeth and James out to dinner.  Sarah had walked back to the bedroom to change clothes.  She heard her phone vibrate.

She went to read the message.

Let’s get naked.  Love, Henry

She needed Henry.  She needed to feel his skin against hers.  She needed to feel him inside of her.  She needed his love.

I am here waiting.  Love, Sarah

Henry needed to feel her body against his.  He needed to be inside of her.  He needed her love.

So much love filled the diner as Elizabeth made sure everything was ready for her parent’s 50th wedding anniversary.  She kissed her husband as she waited for the guests of honor to arrive.  “Ben, did you check on Matthew and Anna?”  She asked her husband.  “Yes, they are waiting at the door with the sign they made.”  She smiled.  They loved their grandma and grandpa.  They worked hard on the sign that said Happy Anniversary.  It was decorated with hearts and rainbows.  James walked over with his wife and new born baby.  Sarah and Henry were devoted grandparents and loved their grandbabies.  As Sarah and Henry pulled up in their car, Matthew and Anna squealed with delight.  “Mommy and Daddy.  They are here.”  Sarah and Henry had such love in their eyes as they walked up the sidewalk of the diner.  “What an awesome sign, Matthew and Anna!”  Both children dropped the sign and ran to them and hugged them.  The sidewalk was lit up with twinkling lights.  Music was playing inside of the diner.  It reminded Sarah of the night Henry proposed.  She held her husband’s hand as they entered the diner to thunderous applause and hugs galore.  Henry and Sarah felt so loved.  Both of them knowing how blessed they were to have an amazing family.  They had a group picture taken and as the photographer snapped the picture both Sarah and Henry thought of Wyatt.  They held each other a little tighter and smiled through the tears.  They danced the night away.  They were the last ones to leave and they drove home feeling young and carefree.  Both of them so in love with the other.  “Happy Anniversary, Sarah. I love you.” He whispered to her.  “Happy Anniversary, Henry. I love you too.”

Sarah lifted Matthew onto the stool as he helped her bake cookies.  Anna was coloring on the kitchen table and singing along with the radio.  Henry walked in and snuck his finger into the bowl for a quick lick of the cookie dough.  Sarah playfully patted him on the behind.  “Grandpa, you are not supposed to do that.” Matthew said laughing.  Henry laughed and hugged his grandson.  “Sorry, buddy.  It won’t happen again.”  He looked at Sarah and winked.  He walked back into the family room and sat down to read the paper.  He suddenly felt a pain in his heart and he gasped.  He called out Sarah’s name.  Sarah heard him call out and went to see what was wrong.  “Henry!” She cried out.  He was on the ground.  Henry saw flashes of his life.  He remembered the day he first saw Sarah in the diner, the night he saw her dance, the night he proposed to her, Sarah saying her vows to him, their wedding day, the birth of Wyatt, the birth of the twins, and he saw Sarah’s face loving him as his world went black.

Sarah held onto Henry’s urn as she left the loving arms of her children and grandchildren.  She needed to be alone to say good bye to the love of her life. Her husband.  She walked along the beach.  She stopped and looked into the beautiful colors of the dusk.  Henry would have loved the beauty of this moment.

“Henry, the love of my life, I was blessed to have you in my life for over 60 years.  You taught me how to love myself and then in turn, I learned to love you.  You believed in me and encouraged me to dream big and to take chances.  We have such a beautiful family.  Henry, I miss you. I miss your touch, your smile, your voice and your sexy laugh that made me drop my panties.”  She laughed out loud.  “I know you would appreciate that.  I know you are with Wyatt, Arnold and my parents.  And I know your parents greeted you with open arms and hugs.”  She walked into the ocean.  “Henry, may you walk with the angels.  I love you.  You will always be with me.  I look forward to the time when we will be reunited.  I will be ok.” She opened the urn and let his ashes soar into the wind and roll into the waves.  As she walked back to their home, she felt Henry’s love surround her.  “I love you, Henry” she whispered into the wind.

Sarah died peacefully in her sleep that night.  Her room was surrounded with pictures and memories of her beautiful life.  Her strength and determination to love and be loved was a testament to her family and the strong bonds that tied them all together were never to be broken. The funeral was a beautiful send off to this amazing woman.  Sarah’s children and grandchildren gathered at the house and walked down to the ocean’s edge.  Each took a turn saying how much they loved her and then Elizabeth and James walked out into the ocean to scatter her ashes.  “Mom, we love you.  We will miss your enormous heart and your caring spirit.  We will miss your laughter and singing and dancing.  Give dad and Wyatt a hug from us.  We love you.”  As if on cue, a burst of wind swooped Sarah’s ashes up into the sky and the waves carried them out to sea.  All of Sarah and Henry’s family walked back to the house and it comforted them to know that Sarah and Henry were reunited.   They smiled to know that they would be back in each other’s arms and dancing together forever.

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The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club Part 8

“Where are we going?” Sarah asked as she jumped into the car.  Henry’s smile was a mile wide and he grabbed her hand and kissed it gently.  “I am taking you to Plemont beach.  My mom and dad took us every year for vacation.  It is a beautiful spot.  We are hitting the beach at the perfect time.  At high tide, the beach is covered entirely by the ocean but we will be arriving at low tide. Sarah, you will love it.” She held Henry’s hand and kissed him on the cheek as they pulled into the parking lot to catch the Liberty Bus that would take them to the beach.

The late afternoon sun shone on the sandy beach and the sky started to turn all shades of pink, orange and purple. Both of them took off their shoes and felt the soft sand squish between their toes.  Even though the wind was blowing and there was a slight chill in the air, neither of them felt cold.  They were lost in their love for each other.  They decided to sit at the edge of a tide pool.  “Henry, this is so beautiful.  Thank you for sharing this with me.” Henry looked into his wife’s eyes and his heart was filled with so much love.  He leaned into kiss her and a huge gust of wind sprayed them with the ocean mist.  Henry grabbed Sarah’s hand and pulled her up.  “Let’s go exploring and get out of this wind.”  He led her into a sea cave.  “My brothers and I spent many hours playing in these caves.  It was a perfect place for us to fight off pirates, save the pretty princess and find the hidden treasure.”  His laugh filled the cave and Sarah giggled at the sight of her husband.  He looked about 12 years old as he told her one adventure after another.    She wrapped her arms around him as he continued to tell her about all his escapades with his brothers.  “Henry, this story reminds me of the one you wrote.”  He shyly looked at his wife. “Yes.  Most of my stories are from our adventures here on vacation.”  Sarah playfully ran her fingers through his hair and looked into her husband’s loving eyes.  “Henry, you need to make those stories into a children’s book.  You have the time now to write them and we could find a way to get them published.”  He sheepishly grinned.  He loved how his wife believed in him even more than he believed in himself.  “Maybe I will.” He whispered into her ear and let his lips find hers as he kissed her.  They made love as the sun began its descent and the dusk sky became a myriad of colors.  Henry and Sarah held tightly to each other as they walked back up the beach.  The beach was their home, a place where they laughed, cried, let all of their fears and worries wash away with the ocean’s tide, and a magical place where their love knew no bounds. A love that would last for a lifetime just as the waves would continue to wash upon the sea for eternity.

After they returned from their honeymoon, Henry and Sarah’s life found a nice routine. Henry continued to find work as a free-lance writer and he started working on a children’s book.   Sarah continued to work at the diner.  The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club continued to meet and Sarah loved the moments with them even more now that she was married.  They gave her advice and continued to ask her when she was going to have a baby.  She would blush and say nothing.  She hoped for a baby.  Henry would be an incredible father.   When they were in Jersey, Sarah watched him play with his nieces and nephews.  His face lit up with love when he held a baby in his arms.  She could not wait to be pregnant and to have a baby with the man she so loved.

A few weeks later, Sarah noticed she tired easily during her runs and she felt queasy at the smell of bacon which is something she usually loved.  She eased into a walk during her run and remembered a story her mom told her about how she knew she was pregnant with her.  Her mom said it was when smells started to bother her that she knew she was going to have a baby.  Just like the bacon thought Sarah, she rushed home and drove to the nearest drug store and bought a pregnancy test.  She drove home and she was excited and anxious all at the same time.  She took the test and set the timer for one minute.  In 60 seconds, her life would change.  All of sudden, she felt scared so she called Allison.  Between the screams of excitement from Allison and her encouragement, Sarah took a deep breath and looked down at the test.  It was clear as day.  A positive sign appeared and she cried from happiness mixed with a tiny bit of fear.  She jumped up and down.  Now, how would she tell Henry?  She thought for a moment and came up with an idea.

Sarah enlisted the help of the ladies from the Breakfast Club.  She swore them to secrecy.  So between the laughing and crying, the ladies helped Sarah prepare her surprise for Henry.  It seemed like the hours went so slow as she waited for Henry to come home.  Finally, she heard him pull into the driveway and she turned on the music.  Her heart raced as she moved to the beat of the music and she watched as Henry walked up the stairs to meet her at the door.  She jumped into his arms and pressed her lips to his.  She kissed his chin, his neck, his ears and then found his lips again.  “Sarah” he barely said her name as he looked at his sexy wife dancing for him.  “Henry, I need you to touch me.”  She took his hands and led him to slowly lift her shirt.  As her shirt lifted, he noticed a pink and blue bow tied around Sarah’s stomach.  His heart skipped a beat as he processed what was happening.  Then he saw two tiny footprints stamped onto Sarah’s belly with the words “Hi Daddy” written on her tummy.  “Sarah.  We are going to have a baby.”  He smothered her with kisses and twirled her around.  “Henry, you are going to be a daddy.  I love you so much.”  He felt such joy and so much love for Sarah in this moment.  “Sarah, you will be an amazing mother.” He gently carried her to the bedroom and they made love.  They talked into the night of how they could turn the office into a nursery, about baby names they loved and disliked, and how they would tell his parents.  Sarah laughed as Henry talked to her tummy.  “Baby Shaw, your mom and I are so excited to bring you into the world.  We love you very much.”

Sarah and Henry walked up to Arnold’s door and knocked.  Lily, his wife, came to the door.  She opened the door and hugged both of them.  “Come on in the both of you.  Arnold is hanging out in his favorite chair in the living room.  He is feeling a little tired today.” Lily walked them into the room.  “Could I get you anything to drink?”  “No.  We are fine.  Thank you.” Henry and Sarah spoke at the same time with a giggle in their voice. “Ok.  What is happening?  Both of you look so happy. The joy is coming through loud and clear.”  Sarah and Henry held hands and spoke. “Arnold and Lily, we are pregnant.  We are having a baby.”  “Woohoo!” shouted Arnold with such glee.  He took both Henry’s and Sarah’s hands and held them tightly.  “I knew you two were meant for each other and now two becomes three.  I am so happy for you both.  You will be amazing parents.”  Sarah’s eyes overflowed with tears as she embraced Arnold.  Henry joined the embrace and so did Lily.  “Group Hug!” they all cried together.

Allison was arriving today from New York to help Sarah and the ladies with planning the baby shower.  Sarah was now 7 months pregnant with a baby bump and a glow of happiness that shone from her eyes.  When Sarah picked up Allison from the airport, she hugged Sarah. “You look so beautiful, Sarah.”  “Thank you my dear friend.  Thank you for coming.  I am so excited to share all of this with you.” They talked nonstop as they drove home.  Henry met Sarah at the door.  As soon as she saw Henry she knew something was wrong.  “Henry, what is it?  What’s wrong?”  He had tears in his eyes and he didn’t know how to tell Sarah the news.  “Both of you please come sit down on the couch.”  He gave Allison a hug and he felt thankful she was here.  He would need her help after he told Sarah the news. “Sarah, Lily called about 10 minutes ago.”  “No.  Stop.  Don’t tell me.”  Sarah started crying.  She knew what Henry was going to say.  Henry took Sarah in his arms as he spoke. “Arnold had a stroke and died about an hour ago.” Sarah went limp in Henry’s arms.  She fell to her knees.  Her heart wrenching sobs broke Henry’s heart.  Allison and Henry helped her to the couch.  Henry held her tight as she cried.  Allison wrapped a blanket around Sarah and went to the kitchen to make some tea to help soothe and calm her.  Sarah cried into the night and fell asleep curled in Henry’s arms.

The day of the funeral, Sarah could hardly keep herself together.  She stayed up almost the whole night working on what she would say today.  Working on how she would say goodbye to the man who became her dad, her confidant, her lifeline, and now he was gone.  As she was looking for her pearl earrings in her jewelry box, she stumbled across Arnold’s Bronze Star.  She had meant to return it to him the day she told him she was going to have a baby but with all the excitement she forgot to bring it with her.  She would take it with her today.

She hugged Lily as they walked up the aisle in the small church.  “My sweet child.  He loved you so.” Lily quietly spoke to Sarah.  “Lily, he was an amazing man.  He loved you so.  He always said he would have never made it after the war without your love and strength.”  Both of them embraced and Lily spoke.  “Go see him dear Sarah.  Say your goodbyes.”  Sarah kissed Lily on the cheek and Henry walked with Sarah as she slowly went up to the casket.  She steadied herself against Henry as she looked at her dear friend.  The tears fell but she began to speak.  “Arnold, you have always been my strength, my kick in the pants when I needed it, and my soft place to fall when I needed comfort.  You gave me courage to take risks again, to find love and to let someone love me.  Heaven is a lucky place today.  You are going to make such an amazing angel.  Your spunk and laughter will have all those angels in stitches from laughing so much.  Arnold, you gave me this Bronze Star on my wedding day.  I am returning it to you on this day as you enter Heaven.  Be brave my friend and soldier.  I will never forget you.  You will be a part of my family’s life.  My children will know you and their children will know you.  I love you Arnold.  Rest well and know we will see each other again someday.”  She took the Bronze Star and put it in the pocket of his uniform.  “You must have looked so handsome entering the gates of Heaven in your uniform.  Good bye my dear friend.  I love you.”  She fell against Henry’s arms and they both walked to the church pew.  It was a beautiful send off for a special and dear man.

Two months had passed since Arnold died, Sarah found comfort in her friendship with the Breakfast Club, Allison and Henry.  Allison planned a beautiful baby shower.  Henry helped her prepare the nursery.  It is a magical room filled with so much love.  Sarah had just finished packing her hospital overnight bag so they would be prepared before it happened, when she felt a pain in her lower back.  She sat down for a minute and 10 minutes later she felt the pain again.  “Henry!  Allison!  I think I am having contractions.”  She stood up and then she felt a gush of water hit the floor.  Henry and Allison ran into the room.  “My water broke.  We need to get to the hospital.”  Henry grabbed the overnight bag, his keys, and helped his wife to the car.  Allison grabbed Sarah’s purse and jumped in the back seat.  Allison telling Sarah to breath and Sarah telling Henry to breathe.  Everyone feeling happy, excited, and anxious to meet this baby.  Two hours later, Sarah and Henry had a healthy baby boy.  The nurse handed the baby to Sarah and Henry nestled in with them both.  Tears of joy streamed from their eyes as they both counted ten toes and ten fingers.  They had already decided on a boy name and a girl name.  As they cuddled and cooed with the baby, Sarah whispered to the baby.  “Welcome to the world Wyatt Arnold Shaw.  We love you very much.”

The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club Part 7

Two days later Henry and Sarah boarded a plane to London. Henry’s family had left the day before and they were meeting up in a few days in Jersey. The passenger load was light for their flight and no one was in front of or beside them on the plane. They were glad to have the privacy and the chance to enjoy each other’s company without having people watching.  They chattered away on the plane, holding hands, kissing, drinking champagne, and watching movies on their IPads.  Both of them feeling giddy and so in love.  After tiring of movies, they used a splitter to hook their earphones to one IPhone so they could share in listening to music.   The first song to play was the first song they danced to at the wedding.  Sarah loved the group Lady Antebellum and the moment she heard “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You”, she only saw Henry in her heart.  The song spoke to her journey of opening her heart, forgiving herself and her parents, and letting Henry help her break down the walls she had built up for so long.  As the song played, Henry pulled Sarah closer to him and he tenderly kissed her lips.   Sarah’s body felt the heat of his body against hers and she fervently found Henry’s tongue, his taste was intoxicating and she kissed him with intent passion.  She slid the earphones off Henry’s ears and her voice was breathy with hunger.  She had a new found confidence in her body, in her sexuality and she wanted to be adventurous.  She took the chance to surprise the man who helped her find the woman she was always yearning to be and she looked into Henry’s eyes.  Both of them reading each other’s bodies and each feeling the heat of their desire.

“Henry, I want you now.”  She unbuckled her seat belt and as she stood up, she looked to see if anyone’s eyes were on them and found most passengers were sleeping.  The cabin lights were low and dim so her boldness over took her.  Henry looked at her with an inquisitive look as she knelt down on her knees and unbuckled his seat belt.  She cupped his face in her hands caressing his hair, his face and his neck.  She quickly peeked to make sure no one would be interrupting them and seeing that the coast was clear, she let her fingers trace the edges of Henry’s face. She felt his heart beat faster as she moved her hands slowly down his body.  She continued her slow seduction by moving her hands underneath his shirt, stroking his chest and stomach.  Her eyes watching his as he tried to maintain his composure but he let out a moan of pleasure.  She put her finger up to her mouth. “Shhh.” she breathed quietly.  She gently unbuckled his belt and unzipped his zipper.  Henry felt his breath catch and he couldn’t take his eyes off of Sarah.  Sarah’s touch ignited his body with a heat so hot and he started to cry out but Sarah touched her finger to his lips to shush him.  Her hands found his already growing erection and she placed her mouth on the tip of his shaft letting her tongue travel up and down the length of his ever growing bulge.  Electrical currents shot through Henry’s body as he grabbed hold the arms of the seat to keep from crying out.  His body giving into the pleasure of feeling Sarah’s grip on him.   Sarah cupped the tip with her mouth and twisted her head in a cork screw motion, slowly at first, then moving faster, as she felt him grow harder with every move of her mouth. His breath became ragged and his hands gently grabbed Sarah’s hair. He needed to touch her.  His hunger and desire intensified as Sarah’s seductive touch had him reeling as he tried not to cry out with ecstasy.    Henry’s body jolted as Sarah brought him to sweet release.   Breathing hard and his body still wanting Sarah, he kissed her letting his tongue savor the salty tanginess taste of her mouth.  Both of them still wanting the other but realizing they would have to wait a few more hours until they landed, Henry quickly put himself back together and Sarah moved back into her seat feeling exhilarated, electrified and sweetly shy but  Henry’s satisfied smile and sexy grin had Sarah’s heart beating fast.  She quietly giggled as she met Henry’s gaze.  She had surprised him and she felt liberated and free.  She loved this man and she had never felt so happy in her entire life.  She kissed him and as she did Henry whispered ever so quietly so she could only hear his voice.

“Mrs. Shaw, you are an amazing woman.  So naughty and sexy.  ” He slyly grinned.

Sarah took hold of Henry’s hand and they held each other close for the rest of the flight.  Both of them longing to be in London where they could start the next part of their honeymoon adventure.

Their adventure through London was a whirlwind of all the places Sarah had dreamed of seeing and she stood in awe of this town as she walked hand in hand with Henry. The London weather surprised them with two gloriously sunny days and the first stop on their adventure was a ride on the London Eye.  Sarah marveled at the sight of this beautiful town with its rich history, glorious architecture and couldn’t help but feel the ghosts of Shakespeare and Charles Dickens beckoning her to embark on the adventure of her life with the man she so deeply loved.  The ride ended and they walked hand in hand through the town.   Henry took her to Big Ben, they walked along the Thames and strolled through the enchanting Hyde Park.  They decided to eat a late afternoon lunch and then make a last stop at the Tower of London.

As soon as The Tower of London came into their view, Sarah took hold of Henry’s hand.  A red sea of poppies filled the grounds to honor those who fought and died during World War I.  Both of them stood in silence of this touching memorial for those men and women who were true heroes and risked their lives for freedom and for their country.  As they walked the path of red, Sarah noticed an older gentleman in uniform sitting alone in a wheelchair.  She couldn’t help but think of Arnold as she and Henry walked up to him.  His head was down and he was quietly weeping.  Sarah instinctively reached out and put her hand on his shoulder to comfort him.  The man looked up and he wiped his eyes with his handkerchief.  Henry held out his hand to greet the man. “Thank you for your service and for your bravery.” The old man took Henry’s hand into his and whispered. “This is a moving tribute to my fallen comrades.  I am the only one left from my unit.  I am overcome by memories. Please forgive my tears.” Sarah knelt down to be closer to him and gave him a hug. “There is nothing to be forgiven.  You have earned the right to cry those tears.  Thank you for your service, sir.  I am deeply touched by this memorial.”  As the old man began to speak, a younger gentleman approached and spoke gently.  “Grandfather, are you ready to go?”  “Yes, my child.” He looked up at Henry and Sarah.  “Always remember my dear children.  Always remember.”  Sarah and Henry stood quietly and watched grandson and grandfather walk somberly back towards the exit.  Both of them held tightly to each other, neither of them wanting to speak but to stand in silence in honor of this man, his comrades and the many more that would follow them.  This was a moment they would both hold in their hearts forever.

As the sun set in the western sky, Sarah and Henry drove back to the hotel to gather their things so they could make the trip to Jersey.  Henry could hardly wait to show Sarah his childhood home and to show her his favorite hidden treasures of this magical place he called home. Sarah wanted to know everything about Henry and seeing his home, where he grew up as a child, filled her with such excitement.  As the plane landed, Sarah turned to Henry and she could see him relax.  Going home suited him and being with his family was so important to him.  Sarah watched her husband as a smile spread across his face and she adored that smile.  His smile lit up his whole face and his eyes danced with love as he turned to her and said, “We’re home.”

Henry’s family greeted them with hugs and Sarah could feel the love from his mom and dad.  She missed her parents and Henry’s parents treated her like she was their daughter.  “How was your visit to London?” Marianne Shaw wrapped her arm around her daughter in law and walked towards the kitchen where she made them each a cup of tea.  “Marianne, it was so beautiful and to experience it with Henry made the trip even more special.” Marianne’s eyes lit up with love as she how much Sarah loved her son. “Sarah, please call me mom.” Sarah smiled and took Marianne’s hand into hers.  “Your son saved my life.  He showed me how to live again and how to love not only him but to love myself.  He is an amazing man.  Thank you for raising such a beautiful son.  But mostly, thank you for your love and support.  It means so much to me.  I miss my parents.”  Sarah wiped the tears from her eyes and she spoke softly as both of them cried. “I am honored to call you mom and I look forward to being a part of this incredible family.” Both of them embraced each other.  “Sarah, my sweet daughter, you are a blessing to our lives too.  Henry has never been happier.  He is so in love with you.  You have made him just as happy.  We are so pleased to have you in our lives too.  Now, we are looking forward to having grandchildren.”  Sarah laughed.  “Mom, we are doing lots of practicing.” They both laughed as the Shaw brothers came running into the kitchen.  Henry hugged his mom and then took Sarah in his arms as they all talked, laughed, and enjoyed being in each other’s company.  Sarah had never felt so happy, so full of love and life.  She smiled as she watched them all start to make dinner and she felt the love encompass the room.  Her heart was content and her love for Henry was ever growing.

After dinner, Sarah excused herself for a moment and walked towards the bedroom where they were staying.  It was Henry’s room and she wanted a moment to herself.  The trip and jet lag were getting to her so she wanted to take this quiet moment to go rest.  As she walked into his room, she could envision him as a little boy, playing and goofing off with his brothers.  She giggled as she thought about all the practical jokes and silly games they probably played on each other.  As she sat down on the bed, she noticed something like a hope chest sitting in the corner of the room.  Her curiosity got the best of her and she walked over and opened it.  All of Henry’s sports trophies filled the chest but there was a set of journals bound together by a ribbon.  This intrigued her so she picked them up and untied the ribbon.  As she opened the first journal, she saw Henry’s name written in a child’s handwriting, his handwriting.  As she turned the pages, there were so many stories he had written as kid.  Stories of faraway lands, of dragons, knights saving damsel’s in distress, hidden caves and hidden treasures.  She laughed as she read the stories of adventure and she didn’t hear Henry walk in as she continued to read.  “Sarah…” She jumped as she looked up at her gorgeous husband with a new found admiration for his talent as a writer.  She loved discovering something new about Henry and she saw in his eyes that he was eager to sit down with her to look at his writings.  He had not read them in years.  “Henry, these stories are amazing.  Even as a youngster, you were an amazing writer.  You could publish these.”  “You think so.  Thank you.  I enjoyed making up adventures and then my brothers and I would act them out.  I haven’t seen these in years.”  “Henry, thank you for sharing your life with me.  I can’t wait to see more of your home.  I love you.” Henry gently took the journals out of her hand, pulled her up so they were both standing.  Henry walked over to the door and clicked the lock on the door.  Sarah looked at him with eyes that said are you sure we should be doing this at your parent’s house.  Henry looked into Sarah’s eyes and Sarah felt her heart beating faster.  How she loved this man and she forgot all about being in Henry’s home as she let Henry love her until they fell asleep.  She awoke the next morning curled up against his chest and she watched her husband as he slept.  She felt loved and her life felt complete in this moment.  Sarah couldn’t wait for all of the adventures that were yet to come.

Henry Cavill State of Mind

Henry Cavill State of Mind

(Inspired by Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind”)

Love you in so many ways

First it was the Count of Monte Cristo

Saw you take flight as Superman

Fell in love with you as the charming Duke of Suffolk

I’m in a Henry Cavill State of Mind

 

                         Heart of gold; Inspired by his love

Ran the Rock of Gibraltar hoofing it

For the Royal Marines and his brother Nik

His love for the animals

Led his heart to help Durrell

I’m in a Henry Cavill State of Mind

 

He makes us believe that anything is possible

Generous and sweet to his fans

All who meet him fall in love with his soul

From taking pictures to autographs

I’m in a Henry Cavill State of Mind

 

His soulful blue eyes draw us to him

And he brings us into his magical world

Showing us how to live our life to the fullest

He’s strong in mind and body

He is simply the best

I’m in a Henry Cavill State of Mind

 

We are all taking this journey to show our love for this man

Cause we’re in a Henry Cavill State of Mind

 

By: Lisa Eise

November 11, 2014

 

 

 

 

The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club (Part 6)

The next few months were a blur for Henry and Sarah.  The date was set for a May wedding.  Henry and Sarah had been skyping with Henry’s family in Jersey and they loved Sarah like she was their own daughter. Henry’s parents and brothers and their wives were coming the week before the wedding. His brothers, Charlie and Nik agreed to be his groomsmen and could hardly wait to visit so they could have fun harassing their younger brother.  Then, they were all flying back to London, where Henry and Sarah plan to spend their honeymoon.  Henry was so excited to share and experience London and the Jersey Island with Sarah.  He knew so many amazing places he wanted to take Sarah and he knew she would love his home as much as he did.

    Sarah, Allison and the ladies from the Breakfast Club worked tirelessly to make all the arrangements.  Sarah and Henry wanted a simple wedding on the beach.  If the forecast called for rain, Henry and Sarah wanted the special day to be at the diner.   Allison agreed to bring a photographer and videographer from the magazine to help with the wedding.  Sarah found a beautiful wedding dress at her favorite dress shop.  When she walked out from the dressing room and looked into the mirror, Sarah knew this dress was the one and Allison nodded with tears in her eyes. 

“You look so beautiful, Sarah.  The dress is absolutely perfect and when you walk down the beach, you are going to take Henry’s breath away.”

“Thank you, Allison.” Tears of happiness were streaming down her face as they hugged.  “This is really going to happen.  I am going to be Mrs. Henry Shaw. Allison, I am so excited.  Only a month away.”

“Let’s get me out of my dress and let’s find one for you, Allison.”

“Me? Why? I already have one picked out for the wedding.” Sarah smiled and took her hand.

“I want you to be my Maid of Honor.  You have been my rock of support, encouraged me when I was at my lowest and most importantly, brought Henry into my life.  I love you.  Will you stand with me on the most important day in my life?”

“Of course, I will.  It would be an honor and pleasure to stand up with you and witness this beautiful marriage.”  Sarah and Allison found a beautiful lilac dress with flowing bodice that fit Allison perfectly.  Both friends left the dress shop feeling happy and excited about the upcoming day. 

        Sarah drove up Arnold’s driveway.  She knocked on the door and there was no answer.  So she went around back to the deck and she called out his name. “Arnold.  Are you here?”

“Yep.  Back here in the garden.  Sarah, is that you?”

“Yes, it’s me. If you have a minute, I wanted to ask you a question.”

“I always have time for you, honey.  I am trying to weed this garden so it is ready for spring planting.  Let’s go sit down.  What’s on your mind, my dear Sarah?”  They sat down and she reached for his hand and held it in hers. 

“Arnold, you mean so much to me and I treasure our time together.  You have helped me through the roughest times in my life, given me the best advice and loved me through it all.  It would be an honor if you would walk me down the aisle.”   

“Oh, my dear, sweet Sarah.  Nothing would make me happier.  I would gladly walk you down the aisle to meet your handsome Henry.”  Sarah hugged him tightly and she spent the rest of the afternoon helping him in the garden.  Sarah felt so blessed.

        The night before the wedding, Henry and Sarah had the evening to themselves.  There had been parties, celebrations and good times with family and friends.  Everyone decided to make it an early night so Henry and Sarah spent a quiet evening at home.  As they lay next to each other, Sarah lightly caressed his arm and kissed him on the lips.  She felt her nerves holding her stomach hostage.  She was not nervous about marrying Henry.  In fact, she could hardly wait to become his wife.  She turned and looked Henry in the eyes.  She would never get used to his stunning blue eyes and how one look from him could instantly turn her into a puddle on the floor.  She loved him from the very depths of her soul and she wanted to make sure her vows were perfect.  She spoke quietly.

“Henry, I am feeling nervous and I know this may be breaking a wedding tradition but I want to say my vows to you now.  I want to share this special moment with only you before we share it with our friends and family.  Would you mind?”

Henry turned his body to meet Sarah’s and wrapped her in his arms. She cuddled up next to him and lay her head on his chest.   

“I love that idea. And I will share mine with you.”  They turned to face each other criss cross on the bed and held each other’s hands as they intently looked into each other’s eyes.

“Henry, from the first time I laid my eyes on you, I absolutely melted, literally!  My hands were clammy and I became a sweaty mess!” Henry chuckled as she continued to speak.  His eyes filled with such love for her. “And there was something about that feeling that let me know there were good things to come.  All my life, I have run away from love but when I met you, my life changed for the good.  Your patience, strength and determination to stand by me during a dark time in my life gave me the courage to let love into my life.  So Henry, I will stand before you because I am happier and more fulfilled today than ever and because I want to share my love with you for the rest of my life.  Because of you I laugh, smile, love, dance, and dare to dream again.  Today and always, beyond tomorrow, I will need you beside me, always as my husband, lover and best friend.  I love you, Henry and I promise to always support you, protect you and love you for as long as we both shall live.”  She could feel her heart beating fast as Henry leaned in and kissed her lips ever so gently.  He whispered her name in her ear. “Sarah.”  He did not think he could love Sarah any more than he did at this moment.  He loved the way her hair fell across her shoulders and how her dimples crinkled as she smiled.  He took a moment to capture this moment for a memory and then he spoke.

“Sarah, the moment I laid my eyes on you at the diner and saw you fidgeting with those silly menus, I knew I loved you. And when I saw you dancing the first night we had dinner, my heart somehow knew you would become my wife. The night you shared your story with me took amazing courage.  The beach has become our special place.  It has helped you heal, it is where I run with you every morning, it is where we have talked, laughed, cried, and loved, and it is our quiet place where we can sit and just enjoy being with each other.   As we stand beside the ocean tide, Sarah, may our love always be as constant and unchanging as these never-ending waves that pour beneath our feet, flowing endlessly from the depths of the sea.  Your love came softly upon my heart, just as the foam comes softly upon the sand, and just as there will never be a morning without the ocean’s flow, so there will never be a day without my love for you.  Today, as I give myself to you, Sarah, my mind is clear and my commitment is strong.  I will never leave you nor forsake you; I will spend all my days at your side.  We will share a lifetime of eternal, immeasurable love. I love you, Sarah Capstone.”  Sarah’s fingers moved slowly tracing the edge of his face and she touched her lips to his.  He gently pushed her down onto the bed.  His voice saying her name as he touched her body and she called out his name as their bodies melded into each other.  Both of them wrapped in each other’s arms feeling content and loved.  The next morning, Henry quietly slipped out of bed, kissed Sarah goodbye, gathered his stuff for the wedding, and drove to his parent’s hotel where he would get ready to marry the love of his life. 

        Allison and the ladies, including Henry’s mom, Marianne and his sister in-laws Rachel and Heather, met Sarah at her house to help her get ready for the big day.  

Allison was going through the check list for Sarah.

“Let’s see.  We have something new, your wedding dress, something borrowed, the beautiful diamond earrings from Marianne, the garter with the little blue flower but we are missing the old.”

A knock at the door interrupted Allison and Sarah got up to answer it.

“We will figure it out, Allison.  Don’t worry.” Sarah saw Arnold at the door.  She opened the door and hugged him. 

“Hi!  You are early.  Is everything ok? Won’t you please come in?” Arnold looked at her and smiled.

“Nope.  I am not going to come in and disturb you ladies but could I have a quick word with you.  I have something I would like to give you, my sweet child.”

“Ok.  Let’s go sit on the porch swing.” They both sat down.  Arnold reached into his pocket and pulled out his Bronze Star.

“Sarah, I was awarded the Bronze Star for my bravery and courage in the war.  Lily and I talked last night and I would like you to carry this with you on your wedding day.  I can see no written all over your face but Sarah, I know you had a rough time during your childhood and then the death of your parents.  I am so proud of you.  It took bravery, courage, and love to bring you out of the bitterness and guilt.  Look at you now.  Please take this Bronze Star and carry it with you today as you start this brand new life as a wife.  Let it be a reminder that the heart heals and love conquers all.  I love you, my dear girl.  Now take this, go finish getting ready, and let’s get you married.”

“Oh, Arnold!  It is beautiful and I would be honored to wear it today. I will take good care of it and I will return it after the wedding.  I love you, Arnold.  Thank you for always being there.”  She took the Bronze Star and as Arnold drove away, she thanked God for bringing him into her life. She would carry the Star in her bouquet.  Now, her wedding day was complete, she had something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue and she had Henry. 

        The time had arrived and the house emptied as Marianne, Rachel and Heather walked down to the beach to find their places.  Allison and Sarah stood at the beginning of the path that would lead them to Henry and the guests.  They hugged. 

“You are beautiful, Sarah.  Enjoy the moment.  Breathe.” Allison heard the music cue and walked down the path.  Sarah took a moment to take it all in and then she tapped Arnold on the shoulder to let him know it was time to walk down the aisle. 

“Sarah, honey, you look so beautiful.  You have the love glow.” Sarah giggled and hugged Arnold.  “I have never felt more happy or blessed in my life.  Thank you for being here to celebrate this moment with me. Let’s go see my soon to be husband.”  Arnold took Sarah by the arm and led her down the path.  As she turned the corner and came into Henry’s sight, his heart stopped for a moment as he took in Sarah’s beauty.  Her skin tanned and glowing, her blonde hair up with strands flowing around her face and neck and her eyes sparkling in the sun and as she walked closer to him, he could feel his heart beating and he had to remember to breathe.  The smooth, satin, white, lace and pearl, off the shoulder dress fit her body perfectly and the simple lace design on the train gave her a timeless, elegant and romantic look.  As the sunlight cascaded around her, Henry thought she looked like a heavenly angel and his love knew no bounds.  Sarah eyes stayed locked on Henry’s as she made her way to meet him.  His brown hair full of curls, his stunning tuxedo which fit him perfectly and showed off his perfect body, and his beautiful blue eyes looking only at her, filled Sarah’s heart with so much love. 

        Arnold released Sarah into Henry’s loving hold and the wedding ceremony commenced.  As Henry and Sarah, lovingly spoke their vows to each other, there was not a dry eye to be seen and all that witnessed their love knew how special this moment was and everyone felt the electricity and magic fill the night air as the sun began to set. Sarah and Henry faced each other holding hands as they heard the preacher finally say, “I know pronounce you man and wife.  You may kiss the bride.”  Sarah watched as Henry licked his lips.  She loved how Henry always did this before he kissed her. It made her palms sweat and her heart race wildly.  When his lips met hers, she knew she would love Henry for the rest of her life.  She was his wife and he her husband.  After they kissed, they turned and faced their family and friends. 

“I present to you, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Shaw.” Henry and Sarah walked down the path holding hands and listening to the cheering and clapping coming from everyone. Hugs and kisses came from all directions.  No one could deny that love was in the air and everyone was held captive by its magical spell. 

 Everyone made their way to the diner where the reception would take place.  The diner was lit up by the enchanting mini lights Henry had used during the proposal.  Guests were treated to food, music, dancing and drinks.  Champagne flowed and glasses clinked with many toasts. 

Arnold raised his glass and spoke with a deep love and admiration for both Henry and Sarah.

“To Henry and Sarah.  May you have a life of love, happiness, peace and, from what I understand from Henry’s brothers and Henry, may you enjoy a lifetime of dancing.” Sarah blushed and Henry laughed as he held onto Sarah.  “Remember to always be patient with one another and to listen to each other.  I think I can speak for all of us here tonight, we love you both and we are honored to have been a part of your special day.”  As Henry and Sarah hugged Arnold, silverware clanged against the glasses beckoning them to kiss.  Sarah and Henry laughed as they kissed each other continuously. 

“I want to thank everyone for helping make our wedding so special. I speak for Sarah and myself, we love all of you. Each of you has touched our lives and our hearts in so many ways.  I hope you will continue to be a part of our lives as we begin our venture into being a married couple.  Now, I want to dance with my wife.  Wow!  That sounds amazing.  My wife!”  He turned and took Sarah out onto the dance floor. Everyone cheered and laughed as they all danced the night away.  Fast dances turned into slow, quiet dances turned into everyone slowly going home or back to their hotels.   Henry and Sarah stayed on the dance floor as the music kept playing.  Their hands touching and caressing each other as they danced and swayed to the music.  The sun began to rise and they made their way back home.  Henry carried Sarah up the steps, through the door, and into the bedroom.  Their eyes on each other as she unbuttoned her dress and let it slide to the floor and he found his way out of his tuxedo.  Their lips meeting in a passionate kiss with tongues dancing and hands touching, exploring both of them crying out as they climaxed. Falling asleep entangled and entwined in each other’s arms, their love strong and steadfast.    Sarah awoke with the sun streaming into the room and she slid her arm around Henry and ran her fingers through his curls. His beauty was intoxicating and she watched him as he slept.  She traced his body with her fingers and she heard him start to wake up.   

“Good Morning, Mrs. Shaw.”  Henry turned to meet her gaze.

“Good Morning, Mr. Shaw.  What do you want to do this morning?” She grinned at him as she let her hand wander down his happy trail.  He grinned back.

“Oh, Mrs. Shaw.  I think you have already decided what we are going to do this morning.” He laughed as he pulled her close to him.  They spent the morning in bed, loving, laughing and enjoying being husband and wife.

The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club Part 5

Sarah could not believe how fast time had flown since that day on the beach when her life started anew.  Henry had gone back to New York to wrap up his job at the magazine and train his replacement.  Henry had decided to leave New York and do free-lance work for the magazine.  He wanted to be with Sarah.  He would miss New York but home would be with Sarah.  He had two more weeks and then he would be with her.  Sarah’s birthday was coming up and he had enlisted the help of The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club to make her birthday special.  Henry had started planning for birthday surprise as soon as he got back to New York.  He could work on the sly and Sarah would have no idea.  He was going to make her birthday a day and night to remember.   The breakfast club were so excited to help.  Henry made them promise not to tell her anything and to be discreet when setting up the schedule and surprises.  They promised to be careful and they were. 

        Sarah had no idea what they were up to and she kept busy with the diner.  The summer season was winding down and September seemed to be flying by.  She could hardly wait for Henry to return.  She missed him more than anything.  They talked, texted, or skyped on a nightly basis.  Henry allowed her to be the woman she wanted to be and the trust they shared between them allowed her to take chances and express herself in creative ways.  She sent flirty, sexy messages to Henry and she loved to catch him by surprise.  She loved to put on his favorite songs during their skype sessions and dance for him.  They would talk into the wee hours of the morning and sometimes they fell asleep with the phones next to them.  She counted the days until he would be next to her. 

        Henry arrived back a few days early and he walked up the steps to Sarah’s cottage.  He was home.  This is where he belonged.  He called out Sarah’s name as he walked in the door.  Sarah ran from her bedroom into the kitchen and jumped into Henry’s arms.  He twirled her around and kissed her. 

“You are finally here.  I have missed you.” Sarah smiled at him and kissed him back. 

They held each other close for a while and then Henry spun her around with his hand.  She laughed.  “What are you doing, Henry?”

His eyes watching her circling around and around. Her beauty overwhelmed him and he knew this was the girl he would ask to be his wife.

“Let me see you dance.” Henry seductively whispered into her ear.  Sarah blushed as she looked into his wanting eyes. 

“Henry, I would love to dance for you.  Give me a minute.  I will be right back.” She kissed him and disappeared for a few minutes.

Then he heard the music start to play and his heart raced as he saw Sarah appear in a white, sheer, short nighty that showed off her long tan legs and came down just low enough for Henry to see a peek of her breasts.  Sarah slowly shook and twirled her body as she moved towards Henry.  She aroused him by sliding her hands down and across her breasts and moving down her thighs. 

“Are you enjoying your dance, Mr. Shaw?” She took his hands in hers moving them across her body.  Henry’s eyes stayed on Sarah’s eyes as he excitedly licked his lips eager to kiss her and make love to her. 

“You are so beautiful.  And yes, I am enjoying the dance.” His voice hoarse with excitement.  She led him to the couch and guided him to sit down.  She continued to sway her hips and dance to the music. 

“Any requests, Mr. Shaw?” she laughingly played with him.

“Let me see you.” Sarah stared into his eyes and she slowly slid her nighty off of her body.  No words needed to be spoken.  Henry’s smile told her all she needed to know.  She reached out to him and he pulled her to him.  Both of them so happy to be together at last.

        The day of Sarah’s birthday arrived and Henry’s first surprise for Sarah was picking up Allison from the airport.  Henry arrived at the airport and met Allison.  They hugged and then Henry drove her to the diner.  The ladies of the Breakfast Club and Allison were taking Sarah to lunch.  They had a whole day planned of eating and shopping.  While the ladies had lunch, Henry and the men diligently worked at the diner to prepare for the next part of the surprise.  Henry planned a romantic scavenger hunt that would begin at the diner.   He had given the first clue to Allison and she was instructed to give it to Sarah at sunset.  The ladies were enjoying a glass of wine and Allison handed Sarah an envelope.

“What’s this?” Sarah looked inquisitively at Allison and the ladies.  All of them had smiles on their faces.

“Open it, Sarah.”  All of them spoke at the same time. 

She opened the letter and read the note.  She smiled and her heart raced as she looked up at them.

“Sarah, read it to us.  We are dying here.”  Sarah read it again to herself and then read it to the ladies.

        Dear Sarah,

                   Tonight is the start of our new journey in life together.  Bid the ladies good night.  Make your way back to the diner where another clue awaits you.  I love you.

          Henry

Allison raised her wine glass and so did the other ladies. 

“Happy Birthday, my dear friend.  We love you and we are so excited to see you start this new part of your life.  When I knew Henry was coming to do the story on Arnold, I had a feeling the two of you would become a part of each other’s lives.  It has been so amazing to see the two of you fall in love.  Sarah, it is such an honor to be your friend.  Here’s to love, happiness and lots of great sex with Henry!”  All of them fell into fits of giggles as they clanked glasses together in toast. 

Allison drove Sarah to the diner.  Both of them hugged each other.

“Allison, I am so glad you told me to take a chance on Henry.  Thank you for being my best friend and for being here for my birthday.  It was a wonderful surprise.”  Allison smiled and said, “I love you, girl!  Go find your next clue.  I am so excited.  You better text me and let me know what happens.” 

“I will.”  Sarah got out of the car and looked up at the diner.  Mini Christmas lights lit a pathway from the sidewalk to the door of the diner.  She could hear the lyrics of one of her favorite songs coming from inside the diner.  She hummed along and whispered the lyrics “It’s not the pale moon that excites me; that thrills and delights me, oh no; It’s just the nearness of you.”  She smiled because only Henry knew that she loved Willie Nelson’s version the best and as she walked in the diner, only the twinkling lights lit up one single table.  Henry left one simple white box with a letter.  Sarah’s heart raced as she took in the beautiful surroundings.  She loved how Henry took such care and detail into making this a night she would never forget.  As Willie continued to serenade her with the “Nearness of You”, she opened the box and inside she found a lovely gold necklace with a stunning conch shell charm.  She put the necklace on and opened the next letter from Henry. 

            Dear Sarah,

                        The legend of the Conch shell is symbolic of our love.  The Conch shell has long been considered a symbol of good luck by sailors and travelers.  So indestructible is this beautiful shell that, no matter how tossed and uprooted by the stormy sea, it always returns home.  It is a symbol of strength and endurance.  You, my love, have strength and endurance as does our love. Keeping this Conch shell near your heart will always be a reminder of how much I love you now and forever.    Now, meet me at our home.  Go up the stairs and your next clue will be swinging near the sounds of the ocean.

            Love, Henry

        She lingered for a few moments before making her way outside to start walking towards home.  Arnold walked up the path to greet her.  He took her by the arm and led her down the sidewalk to his car.

“Sarah, Henry wanted me to escort you to your next destination.  What do you think of all this my sweet child?  You have found yourself a good one, Sarah.”  He laughed and she could see the twinkle in his eye as he opened the car door for her.

“Yes, I have.  Arnold, the prayers that I have been praying and I know all of you have been praying, have finally been answered.  My heart is overflowing with all of the love I am feeling tonight” Sarah smiled and kissed Arnold’s hand as they drove to her house.

“Here we are, my dear.”  He got out and opened the door.  The mini lights led a path from the stairs to the porch swing.  There was an iPod station set up beside the swing with a note that said press play.  Sarah pressed play and she laughed out loud.  The familiar tune “Pour Some Sugar on Me” by Def Leppard sang out and she saw the letter on the swing. 

         Dear Sarah, 

                        I can almost hear your laughter as you play this song.  I know you are thinking of the other night when you danced for me.  But I am thinking of another time.  You don’t know this but the first night we met for dinner here, I caught you dancing to this song.  I believe I fell in love with you at that moment.  Now, the last part of this adventure will lead you to me.  Take the path to the ocean.  I will be waiting.

            Love, Henry

Sarah walked down the steps and towards the path to the beach.  As she turned the corner, the pathway was lit by Tiki torches and Henry had sprinkled pink, red and white rose petals down the pathway. There was one more letter tied to the first torch and Sarah read the last note.

            Something special happened on the day I met you

            All it took for me to fall under your spell was your beautiful smile

            Ready to spend the rest of my life with you

            And love you now and forever as your

            Husband. 

            I love you Sarah.  Will you marry me?

            Henry

           

               Her heart was beating fast and she was overwhelmed by the love she felt for Henry.  She kicked off her shoes and quickly walked the path to meet Henry.  Tears were running down her cheeks as she saw Henry on bended knee at the end of the path. 

“Sarah Capstone, will you marry me?” Henry stood up and took the ring out of his pocket.  He nervously slid the ring on her hand.   

“Yes!  Yes!  Yes! I will marry you, Henry!”  She cried into his ear as they held onto each other. 

“I love you, Sarah.”  He quietly whispered to her.  They held tightly to each other and danced to the music of the ocean as the waves brought in the tide.  As much as Henry wanted to stay and keep this moment between them, he had arranged a party at the diner with all of the breakfast club, the employees of the diner and their friends. 

        The party lasted until the wee hours of the morning.   Everyone felt spell bound by the love that surrounded Sarah and Henry.  It was a magical evening.  Sarah and Henry outlasted all the guests as they slowly made their way home.  The music kept playing and both of them held each other as they continued to dance in the darkness.   As the last notes of the song drifted into the night air, Henry and Sarah walked out of the diner and drove home.  The air had a hint of coolness and they made their way to the porch swing.  Sarah curled up in a blanket next to Henry and she kissed his lips softly.  For the first time in her life, Sarah loved someone and let someone love her back.  It was a most precious moment in her life and she silently thanked God for bringing her Henry and for allowing her to accept the love he brought.

To be continued.

The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club Part 4

Sarah called work as she walked up the steps of her house and let Kim know that she would not be in for the rest of the day.  She thought Henry might be here waiting for her but there was no sign of him as she changed out of her work clothes into her favorite white sundress and pulled her blonde hair up into a pony tail.  She wanted to walk on the beach, to feel the sand on her feet, and to be near the ocean.  She walked down the path and felt herself breathe and she reached for her phone to text Henry.  She looked up to see the waves and saw Henry walking at the water’s edge.  She heard Arnold’s words in her head and called out his name.  “Henry!”  She saw him look up and she ran straight into his arms.  “Henry, I am so sorry.  I am so sorry.”  She kept repeating this over and over again.  Henry calmed her and stroked her hair.  She finally let go of his embrace and saw the love in his eyes for her.  Now was the time to share her story with Henry. 

        Henry and Sarah sat on the sand and she took both of his hands into hers and spoke with a sense of courage and urgency.  “I want to say something before I tell you my story.  My childhood was not always easy and I have been through some dark moments.   As I reflect on my parent’s life, they did the best they could and they loved me but I need to release my hurt and anger.  I am so scared but Henry I don’t want to lose my chance at love and happiness.”  Henry looked at her with sad but loving eyes.  “Sarah, let me be your courage.  I am here to listen. Take your time and tell me your story.”  He softly kissed her lips and waited for her to begin.  

        Sarah stared out into the ocean and let the memories come back to her.  She was 5 years old when she witnessed her parent’s horrible fights for the first time.    She would run to her room and try to distract herself from the scary sounds of what she heard beyond her bedroom door.   The vile words, slamming of doors, objects being thrown, and worst of all, was the violence of the arguments.  The sound of the hits, her mother’s screaming and crying voice, led Sarah to cry out to her mom.  Sometimes her mother would come to her and try to comfort her but most times Sarah isolated herself in her bedroom.  The arguments were not only confined to the house.  Sarah would find herself in the backseat of the car during one of her parent’s quarrels and she could not escape to the solace of her bedroom.  She would close her eyes, put her hands over her ears, and pray that they would stop.  She yelled at them to stop but they were deaf to her cries.  They were too caught up in their own mess to realize what was happening to Sarah.  On a few occasions, Sarah found herself in the middle of an argument.  Her dad had pushed her mom outside the sliding glass door, slammed it shut, and locked her mom out of the house.  Sarah’s mom screaming at her to open the door and her dad telling her she better not open the door.  Sarah stood frozen in fear.  She could see her mom’s pleading eyes and she feared what her dad would do to her mom if she opened the door.  She opened the door and ran outside to escape the fight.  Sarah tired of always having to run to her room at the end of the day when her dad would come home from work because the conflict would start again.  She learned at a very young age to be the peacemaker.  She would draw pictures of hearts and flowers.  Writing simple notes asking her parents to be nice to each other.  She called her dad on the phone crying to him to be nice and to love mommy when he came home.   She learned to stay in control of her emotions.  She never wanted to have a man look at her with disdain, spew horrible words at her, or physically abuse her.  She loved many people in her life and allowed very few to love her back. Her parent’s fights changed who she was.    

        “Henry, I know that I can get past the memories of my childhood but I don’t know how to release the guilt of the night my parent’s died.” She started to cry and Henry held her closer as she quietly spoke.

“Believe it or not, my parents were in a good spot in their relationship.  They had been going to therapy, my dad had quit drinking, and they were learning to communicate with each other without conflict turning into violent quarrels.”  Sarah stopped talking and stood up.  She walked to the water’s edge and Henry followed.  Her tears were falling freely now. “Henry, I was so mad at them.   They were healing and I was still broken.”  She took a deep breath.  Henry took her hand and he spoke with such a gentleness.  “Sarah, I am right here.  I am not going anywhere.  Finish your story.” 

“I yelled awful, hateful things at them.  I told them I hated them both and that they were awful parents.  I told them I didn’t love them.  I said they were the reason I didn’t have anyone in my life to love.” Sarah could not control the tears but she continued.  “I told them to leave. I can still see the hurt in my mom and dad’s eyes.  Oh, Henry, as soon as they walked out of my house and drove off, I regretted everything I said.  I called my mom’s cell phone but it went to message.  I left a message apologizing and saying that I loved them and to please come back. But they didn’t.  The phone rang and I thought that they were calling me back but it was the police telling me they had been killed. I have never been able to forgive myself.  The guilt is sometimes so overwhelming.” She looked at Henry with such sadness and his heart broke. “Henry, I don’t even know if they heard my message.  It is all so hard to deal with.  My childhood wasn’t all bad and as a family, we had many good moments.  But the damage was done and I didn’t know how to get past it.  So, I let my feelings out on that horrible day.  I don’t know how to release it.  How do I let it all go? How do I forgive myself and forgive them?”   He walked Sarah to the edge of the water.

“Sarah, I want you to go into the ocean and shout your feelings into the waves.  No one is watching or listening.  It is only you and me standing here.  Release your pain and guilt.  Forgive them but most importantly, forgive yourself.”  She looked at Henry with a confused look but for some reason it made sense to her and she ran into the ocean.  As the waves crashed against her, she screamed her pain into the wind.  “It wasn’t fair what you did to me!  I am so mad at you for not thinking about what you were doing to me when you were fighting! It changed me and I lost my innocence long before I should have!” Henry watched her as she released her anger.  His eyes filled with tears as she continued to yell.  “But mom and dad, I forgive you!  I know you loved me and you did the best you could.  I love you but I am changing the legacy of this family.  I am going to live my life and love and let someone love me!  I release the guilt from my soul and I take back my life. I release the pain!”  She stopped and looked up into the beautiful colors of the sky as the sun started its descent into the clouds.  “I forgive myself.  I forgive myself.”  Exhausted and barely able to stand up against the waves, she started walking toward the shore.   Henry walked into the water to meet her and when he reached her, they clung to each other as the waves took her pain, guilt, and anger out to sea.  They walked back to the shore and Sarah was thankful to Arnold, to the ocean, and to Henry for bringing her back to life.

        Henry and Sarah walked back into the house.  Sarah was shivering and went to change into dry clothes.  She was emotionally exhausted but her mind and soul felt free.  She didn’t quite know what to do with herself because she was used to carrying around such heavy baggage her whole life.  It was a feeling she looked forward to getting use to and she couldn’t wait for her life to begin with Henry.  She heard water running in the bathroom and she walked in to see Henry filling the tub with her favorite bubble bath.  He turned to her and took her hand.

“Tonight is all about you, my love.  All I want you to do is relax and enjoy some pampering from me.” His smile warmed her heart and she was so glad to have endured all the difficult moments in her life because it had led Henry into her life.  He lit some candles and placed them around the tub.

“Henry, this is so beautiful.  I want to share this with you.” He shushed her by putting his fingers to her lips.

“Now, I am going to go put a pot of tea on the stove and you are going to get in this tub and enjoy yourself.  I will be back in a few moments.”

“But, Henry” she quietly spoke.  He stopped her mid-sentence and said, “I will be sharing this with you.  Do as I say and just relax in the tub.”  He kissed her gently and closed the door behind him as he walked to the kitchen.  Sarah felt the butterflies fluttering in her stomach and old tapes starting to play but she realized this was a new beginning for her.  She was going to let the love Henry had for her into her heart and she was going to make new tapes to play inside her head.  She felt a new energy pump through her body and she slid into the warm, bubbles cascading around her. 

        Henry knew his way around a kitchen and he loved how Sarah had a place for everything in her kitchen.  He made the pot of tea and had everything ready for Sarah when she finished her bath. 

        Sarah had enjoyed the bubbles, the special soaps to wash her body and she realized how much her soul needed pampering.  She heard a soft knock on the door and Henry walked over to her. 

“I was about to wash my hair and then I will be ready to get out.” She looked up at him and saw a sly grin on his face.  “What is that grin about, Henry?”  They both laughed together.  “Let me wash your hair.” With that, he took the shower handle off of the holder and then he held her head so she was leaning slightly back.  The warm water fell gently over her hair.  He took a small amount of shampoo and started to massage her scalp with his strong, healing hands.  Sarah’s body felt electrified.  She had never experienced such an intimate moment with a man.  As Henry continued to use his magic touch, he talked quietly to Sarah.

“I am so humbled and deeply touched that you opened up to me.  Sarah, I am so proud of you.  I know that there may still be tough times ahead but the difference is I will be here for you.  You are a beautiful, courageous, amazing and loving woman.  I love you, Sarah!”

Sarah could not speak. Her heart overflowed with love for this man.  She waited for Henry to finish rinsing her hair before she spoke. 

“Henry, the love that I am feeling in this moment is so special.  I am stronger and more courageous because of your patience and kindness.  I feel beautiful and amazing because of the wonderful things you do for me.  Tonight is a new beginning for me.” She reached up and touched his face.  “I love you, Henry Shaw.  Thank you for coming into my life.”  Henry kissed her lips.  He kissed her neck.  He kissed her entire body.  Each kiss was a new memory replacing an old one.  He picked her up and carried her into the bedroom.  They made love and fell asleep wrapped up in each other’s arms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       

 

 

 

The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club ( Part 3)

The room was pitch dark and the covers were up over Sarah’s head.  Why was there no light? Why was her door shut?    Mommy promised there would be a night light.  She cowered under the sheets.  Her little body shivering from fear.  She could hear the slaps, the screams, the scary words and loud crashes of things being thrown.  She heard a loud thump against the wall and her mom moaning and crying outside her bedroom door.  “Mommy!” Sarah screamed.  Sarah moved out of her bed, her knees shaking so terribly, and she opened her door slowly and quietly.  She peered through the open crack of the door and started crying. “Mommy!  Mommy!  Are you alive?” 

        Sarah felt herself scream out in her sleep and she bolted up out of the bed.   Sweat was dripping off of her face as she realized she was dreaming.  She turned to see Henry still sleeping beside her.  She was glad she didn’t wake him up. She put on her sweatpants and a t-shirt.   She walked into the bathroom and splashed cold water on her face.  Her hands still shaking from the memory of her dream.  The flashbacks of her childhood often haunted her dreams.  She stared at her reflection in the mirror.  The old tapes in her head started to play and she listened as they told her to stay in control, stay calm and everything will be fine.  She walked outside and sat in the porch swing.  She listened to the ocean lulling her back to a calm state and she pulled a blanket from the basket to cover her as she swung to the rhythm of the waves.  She saw Henry come around the corner and he sat down next to her.  “Are you all right, Sarah?” Henry asked quietly.  “I am fine.  Just a bad dream.  I didn’t want to wake you so I came out here. It is amazing how calming the ocean sounds are when you are feeling anxious.” Sarah softly spoke.  Henry reached out to touch her and Sarah moved off the swing.  “I will make you some coffee.” She looked at Henry with tired eyes and walked into the kitchen.  Henry sat on the swing and felt baffled at what he should do.  Arnold had told him to be patient with Sarah and he took those words to heart.  Sarah could kick herself.  What was she doing?  She knew Henry was a good guy but it was going to take some time for her to let go of all this pain.  She wanted to run back to him and tell him everything but she couldn’t.  Not yet.  She hoped Henry would be there when she was ready.  As Henry walked through the kitchen, Sarah handed him the coffee and she braced herself for the yelling, spewing of horrible words, or the splintering sarcasm that usually came her way when she backed away.  Her previous boyfriends did not take kindly to her distant behavior and let their frustrations out in many inappropriate ways.  In her heart, she knew Henry was not like this and she knew he was frustrated.  Who wouldn’t be?  She was hot and then cold.  Why did she do this?  She was so mad at herself and hot tears fell from her eyes.  Henry walked over to her.  He put his hands on her shoulders and gently wiped her tears away with his thumb.  “Sarah, I know what you are thinking and I am not one of those guys.  But you are going to have to give me a chance and open up to me.  I am not going anywhere.  You are worth the fight and I will fight the demons with you.”  She nodded and hugged him tightly.  “Henry, I know you are one of the good ones.  I knew that the moment you walked into the diner.  I watched how sweet and generous you were with The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club.   I am thankful that you walked into my life. You have a gentle spirit and I knew my life was going to be different after meeting you.” She looked at the clock and knew he had to go catch his plane.  “Sarah, I will be back in a month with the finished article and I am going to bring you the final copy because I want to share the moment with you and Arnold.  Until then, we will talk and text.  I look forward to seeing you again.  Believe it or not Sarah, you are a beautiful woman with a huge heart and I am falling for you.” Her face lit up and her eyes glimmered with a giddiness.  “Henry, for the first time in my life, I feel beautiful” and then her voice fell to a whisper “I am falling for you too.”  They kissed and held each other tight.  Henry walked down the steps turned and said “Until then.” She smiled and watched him drive away.  Her heart was filled with so many mixed emotions.  She was falling for this beautiful British man.  Hopefully, she would break through the pain and guilt of the past that continued to hold her back from truly living her life.

        As the plane took off, Henry was lost in thought about his trip.  He kept going back to his connection to Arnold and how he spoke with such wisdom, honesty and courage.  When Arnold talked, Henry knew he knew the pain and agony of a painful past and he admired how he made a decision to let the love of his family bring him back to life after the war left him bitter and angry.  During the last visit they had together, the conversation turned to Sarah.  Arnold spoke with a commanding but gentle tone, “Son, I see it in your eyes.  You are in love with Sarah.”  Henry’s cheeks and neck turned red but he could not deny the fact that Arnold was right.  “Yes, Sir.  I care for Sarah.” Arnold took a sip of the lemonade his wife made and kept talking. “Sarah is like a granddaughter to me, Henry. She has been through a lot and I don’t even know the whole story.  At times her eyes are distant and she seems to be lost in a bad place but her eyes have a sparkle when you are around. “Henry smiled as Arnold kept talking.  “We all have painful memories and we all handle it in different ways.  She has it bottled up in her heart and she is holding on to it tight.  I sure worry about her, Henry but I think you may be the link to help her live and love again.  Be patient with her, son.  She is worth the wait.” With that, Arnold’s wife came outside and the conversation changed to the dinner they were having that night but Arnold looked over at Henry and gave him a quick wink letting Henry know he cared about both of them.  As the plane landed, he already missed the southern town with its charm and he missed the girl with the broken heart and he wanted to be the man to help heal her heart and show her love is all they need. 

        Time passed quickly for Sarah after Henry went back to New York and she was busy at the diner with the summer season rush.  Henry texted and called Sarah almost every night.  However, she had not responded to the last few texts or phone calls from Henry because she was so busy with work and by the time she got home, she collapsed on the couch and fell asleep.  She would wake up nightly from the nightmares of her childhood and the last dream jolted her soul.  She had dreamed of the last night she spoke with her parents.  She wanted this to end but she didn’t know how to make the dreams stop.  Actually, she knew what she had to do to make the dreams go away.  She needed to deal with the memories and the guilt.  It was all too overwhelming.  She pulled away from Henry and she knew the game she played all too easily.  It was something she was good at but she knew it hurt him.  The burden was becoming almost too much to bear and she knew something had to give.  She had to let the pain and guilt go but how was she supposed to go about it.  Sarah couldn’t think anymore.  She heard her phone buzzing but she ignored it.  She pulled the covers over her head and prayed that she would have a dreamless night.

        Henry had not heard from Sarah for the past two weeks.  The article was finished and he was proud of how it turned out.  He was excited to share it with Arnold and Sarah.  He was flying in the next day.  He was frustrated with Sarah but he wasn’t going to give up.  He wished he knew how to help her.  He was going to have to push her to open up.  It wasn’t going to be easy and she may hate him for a while but he knew Sarah needed to finally be free of the painful memories. 

        The lunch rush was in full blast when Henry walked into the diner.  Sarah saw him first and she felt her breath catch as he walked toward her.  Her heart started beating fast and she was nervous as he approached her.  She knew she hadn’t responded to Henry’s calls or texts and she knew Henry was not going to be happy.  Henry smiled at her but his eyes looked sad.  He hugged her and Sarah felt her body respond to his gentle touch.  She did love him but she didn’t know how to let him love her.  She pulled away and looked into his eyes.

“Hello, Sarah.  Looks like you are really busy.  But could we talk for a minute.” He guided her towards the office.  She followed.  He handed her the finished article and she took it from him.  She set it down on the bar.  Her stomach was filled with nervous butterflies. 

“Henry, I am sorry.  I appreciate you bringing the article to me but we are so busy and I don’t have time to talk.  Can we do this later?”  She started to walk out the door but Henry gently grabbed her by the arm. “No, Sarah.  I want to talk now.  I flew all the way from New York to share the article with you and you are blowing me off.  I am trying to be patient but I don’t know what it is you want me to do.”  She looked at her manager and motioned her to come over to her.  “Kim, can you take over for a while.  I need to deal with a few things.”  “Sure, boss.  You got it.  Take your time and do what you need.” Kim walked off and Sarah turned to Henry. 

“You don’t need to do anything.  I can take care of myself.”  She felt tears sting her eyes.  “I am sorry I haven’t talked to you but I can’t do this at work.” “Sarah, what is it going to take?  I am not going to wait around forever. This is a game you have played for a long time and it is a game I don’t want to play with you anymore.”  His voice was quiet but upset.  Sarah felt the sting of the comment.  “Then don’t play.”  She grabbed the article off table and walked out the door.  “Sarah!” Henry called after her but she walked out of the diner.  Henry let her go. She started to run and made a decision to go see Arnold. 

        Arnold opened the door and saw Sarah standing there with a smile on her face but her eyes gave away her sadness. 

“My dear, Sarah, what a nice surprise.  Please come in.  What brings you here to my humble abode?”  He had a gentleness to his voice that Sarah loved. 

“Henry brought me the finished story and I wanted to share it with you.” Sarah took a deep breath to keep from crying. 

“Sarah, my dear child, I am so glad you brought this to me but what is the real reason you are here.  You could give me the magazine on Thursday.  Come sit outside.”  Sarah walked outside with him and they sat down on the deck chairs.  Sarah started crying.  Arnold took her hand and spoke gently but sternly. 

“Sarah, the time has come for you to release yourself from the guilt and pain you have been carrying for 10 years.  Honey, life is too short for you to be hiding in the past.  You are a beautiful girl and you deserve to have love in your life.  Let Henry love you.” The tears fell quickly and Arnold handed her his handkerchief.  He continued to speak. “This article Henry wrote about me is a nice thing but it doesn’t cover the hell I went through.  Honey, I saw things, heard things, and did things that are unspeakable.  I could have let that destroy me but I let the love of my wife and children bring me back to life.  It wasn’t easy and it is painful but Sarah, it is time.  Henry will be your strength and courage.  He is not leaving you.” Sarah looked at Arnold.  She knew he was right.  “I am so scared, Arnold but I know it is time for me to release myself from this punishment.”  She hugged Arnold.  “What if we don’t make it, Arnold?”  He looked at her and smiled.  “Sarah, sometimes people are put into our lives for different reasons.  They are not always meant to stay forever.  You have to be open to what they bring to your life.  Henry is here for you now.  Be open to his love and let it heal you.  Be open to the adventure, Sarah and let yourself feel the love.  It is an amazing healer. You are strong!  You can do this.  Go to him now.  Don’t wait any longer.”  She hugged him again. “Arnold, thank you.  I love you.” He took her hands and held them tightly.  Then he shooed her off.  “Go, dear.  Go get your man.” 

       

       

       

 

 

 

       

 

 

       

  

The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club (Part Two)

Before Henry departed the diner, he exchanged cell phone numbers with Sarah so they could communicate easily on meeting times for Arnold and a time for Henry to interview Sarah and take pictures of the diner. Sarah gave him directions to her house and they agreed to meet around 7:30 that evening for dinner. The diner closed early on week nights so Sarah would have enough time to go home, change and prepare dinner. As she walked home, Sarah let the ocean air relax her mind from the busy day and she had a kick in her step and a smile as wide as the ocean itself. As she climbed the steps to her house, she worked quickly to ready herself for Henry’s arrival. She grabbed a quick shower, threw her hair up in a ponytail, and decided to wear her purple sundress. Barefoot and enjoying the cool night air breezes, she turned on her favorite music and danced around the kitchen preparing dinner. Henry arrived and walked up the steps of the cottage. He stopped as soon as he reached the top step and saw Sarah singing and dancing to the music. He grinned as she shook her hips and watched her put the wine glasses on the table. He was falling for this girl in this southern town on this beautiful starry night. He walked up the last step and knocked on the screen door. Sarah’s heart skipped a beat when she saw him standing there. His physical beauty made her feel slightly intimidated. He wore a cool, white linen shirt with the sleeves rolled up showing off his muscular arms and it was unbuttoned at the top letting his chest hair peak out from underneath. Sarah knew how handsome Henry Shaw was but Sarah also liked the heart of the man. She had watched Henry as he interviewed Arnold. She loved how gently he handled Arnold and truly listened to his stories. Arnold’s feistiness can be a lot to handle but Henry took it in stride and Arnold seemed to respond to his genuineness. Henry told Arnold that he had brothers that had been in the Armed Forces. He had nothing but respect for the Veterans and honored the commitment they made to defend the values and beliefs of their country. She knew Henry and Arnold would be friends but little did she know how this friendship would help her heal her heart and finally find the love she had been aching for a very long time.
Sarah greeted Henry at the door and she hugged him as she invited him in the house.
“Sarah, you look beautiful. Thank you for inviting me to dinner.” His accent made her melt and she could feel the heat rising to her face.
“You are welcome.” She sheepishly grinned and looked into his eyes. “Would you like a beer?”
“Yes, that would be great.”
“Just grab one out of the fridge and I am going to throw the steaks on the grill. It is such a beautiful night. I thought we could eat out on the screened porch. I rarely get to do this in the summer. It is so hot but this week, the weather has been perfect.” She was rambling. Something she tended to do when she was nervous. As she went out the door, she didn’t notice Henry following her and the screen door slammed into his face.
“Oh No! I am so sorry Henry.” She giggled at the goofiness she felt at the moment and Henry laughed out loud. He walked over to her and helped her put the steaks on the grill. They both sat down on the porch. Henry loved the sound of the waves crashing on the surf and enjoyed the quiet moment between the two of them.
As the night continued, the conversation was easy and flowed. They shared moments in time from childhood, family and college. As they finished cleaning up dinner together, they made their way back to the porch and they both sat down on the porch swing. Sarah had never felt so at ease with a man. The connection between them was something Sarah had never experienced.
Henry wanted to know more about the diner.
“Sarah, how did you end up owning the diner?” He looked up at Sarah and saw a change in her demeanor. She tensed up and immediately got up from the porch swing. She knew this question was coming and she wondered why it never got any easier to answer.
Henry walked over to her and asked “Are you ok?”
“Yes. I am. It is still difficult for me to talk about but I want to share this story with you. The diner has been in my family for 75 years. My grandparents owned it and then when they retired, they let my parents take it over.” She sat down on the chair and brought her knees up to her chin. Henry stood and listened.
“My parents were killed in a car accident. It was a stormy night and the roads were wet. They hydroplaned, hit a guard rail, and the car flipped killing them both instantly.” The tears welled up in her eyes as she let the memories of that night wash over her like a tidal wave. Henry knelt down and took her hand. His heart hurt for her and he wanted to take the pain away. “Sarah, I am so sorry. I don’t even know what to say.” She looked at him. “That was ten years ago. It never gets easier.” She cried and Henry held her in his arms. Sarah made her mind stop thinking about that night and proceeded with the rest of the story.
“My parents left me the diner so after much thought and sleepless nights, I decided to quit my teaching job and become the owner of the diner. I couldn’t let the diner go.” There were other reasons why Sarah could not let the diner go and why she seemed to be stuck in the past. Painful memories swirled around in her mind. Would she ever be able to let go of the past? .
“Henry, something wonderful happened ten years ago too.” She had to change the subject. She did not want to enter the darkness.
“What would that be?” He smiled and through the light from the house, he could see Sarah smile again.
“That is when The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club started coming to the diner. They became my family. Henry, they mean the world to me. They brought me back to life. They gave me a purpose to get up every morning. I am so glad you will be sharing Arnold’s story.” Sarah walked over to Henry and hugged him.
He whispered into her ear. “Sarah, you are an amazing woman.” Henry pushed a lock of her hair around her ear and caressed her cheek. His lips met hers as they teased each other with a dance of back and forth with light brushes against their lips. With a slight glance at Sarah, Henry licked his lips and looked into Sarah’s eyes with an intensity and hunger that set Sarah’s body on fire. His lips met hers as Henry slowly let his tongue find hers. Both of them hungrily exploring each other as a bolt of lightning lit up the night sky and a crash of thunder shook the house, they parted. The weather seemed to match their fiery passion. She could hear Henry’s breathing and she looked into his eyes. Henry spoke first.
“It is late. I better be going. We have an early day tomorrow.” He held Sarah’s hand and walked toward the door to leave. Sarah felt breathless and exhilarated all at the same time. She could not find the words to say. Henry smiled. “Thank you for dinner, Sarah. I look forward to more nights like this.”
“Me too, Henry. I will see you tomorrow.” She kissed him lightly on the lips and hugged him.
Sarah watched Henry drive away. Her mind was filled with so many thoughts. Beginnings were always so wonderful and endings always had heartbreak. It was the middle that Sarah knew she needed to work on and the past always had a way of mucking up Sarah’s relationships. She knew she needed to let go of the pain and guilt she had held onto for far too long. Somewhere deep in her heart and soul, she knew Henry would be the man to help her heal and to finally be free to love.
Sarah looked at her phone and it was after 1am in the morning. She climbed into bed and her thoughts were consumed with Henry. His kiss, his touch, his clean shaven smell and the taste of him still lingered on her lips and clothes. She smiled, grabbed her phone, and sent Henry a text.
Hi! I enjoyed dinner and getting to know you. Know it is late but I am going running in the morning. If you would like to join me, meet me at my house at 5:30am. Hope to see you then. Sarah
On the other side of town, Henry heard his phone vibrate and he checked the message. He smiled as he read the text from Sarah and he looked forward to seeing her again.
The next morning, she heard him pull into the drive so she grabbed her keys and ran down the steps to meet him. She did not sleep well the night before but she felt energized by the connection she had with Henry. Henry greeted Sarah with a hug. Even dressed in jogging pants and a t-shirt, he took Sarah’s breath away. She kept telling herself to breathe and concentrate on the run.
“Are you ready to go?” Sarah said with a big grin. Henry loved the way her smile lit up her whole face. “Yes, let’s go!” Henry said and started running down the path to the beach. They found a natural rhythm with each other and after reaching the pier, they slowed down to a walking pace. Their feet met the water’s edge and Henry naturally took hold of Sarah’s hand. He felt a slight flinch from Sarah but she kept hold of his hand. Sarah knew how to keep herself together and being vulnerable was a hard thing for her to be. She had learned from her childhood to stay strong, to be in control, and everything would be safe. She could love somebody but letting someone love her would prove to be her weakness. Vulnerability brought hurt, loss, and anger. With Henry, it seems different. She knows she has to try to open up her heart and let love into her life. So when she felt Henry take her hand, she flinched because this part scares her but she is going to break through this fear and let Henry love her. Even though they have only known each other for two days, she can tell he is the guy that will stay and help her on this journey of discovery.
Sarah let go of Henry’s hand and turned to him with a slight grin.
“Hey! I will race you! Come on!” She started running and giggling as she heard Henry say, “What do I get if I win?” He caught up to her and she said, “It is a surprise. Come on!” She ran as fast as she could and the funny thing was she had no idea what the prize would be. She would figure out when they got there. Henry made it to the house a couple of minutes before Sarah. He grabbed the hose, turned it on and as Sarah came around the corner he turned on the hose full blast. “Oh no!” Sarah covered her face and took the middle part of the hose but Henry was too strong. Her laughter filled the back yard as she fell to the ground and she tried to speak words but the giggles took over. Henry fell to the ground beside her and she took the chance to grab the hose and spray Henry. His infectious laugh made Sarah giggle even harder. Henry wrestled the hose out of her hands and took her face into his hands. She could feel her heart beating so fast as Henry’s lips met hers and their tongues eagerly explored each other. Henry pulled Sarah into his body and she met his passion by grabbing his brown curls making the kiss more intense. Sarah’s body began to move in rhythm with Henry’s and as they rolled back on to the ground, the water sprayed them both, startling them and bringing them back to reality. Sarah reached over and turned off the water. Henry pulled her up. He looked at his watch and knew he had to leave. He was spending the day with Arnold and he planned to meet him within the hour. As much as he was looking forward to talking with Arnold, he was disappointed to have to leave Sarah. Henry had never experienced as an intense connection as he had with Sarah. She had a natural beauty, a caring heart, and a wicked sense of humor. She loved music, reading, cooking, and had a natural curiosity about life. But still he sensed that she kept a part of herself closed but his heart was telling him to pursue this girl and to see what adventures lay ahead for the two of them. He knew he would be leaving at the end of the week but this was not the last time he would see her. He would find a way to come back to this southern town and to this southern girl.
As the week flew by, Henry and Sarah were inseparable. He spent the mornings with Sarah running and the evenings making dinner at her house. He loved hearing her stories about her former students and he could tell how much she missed teaching but he was impressed by her commitment to the diner. She loved being a part of the diner and he loved watching her with the Thursday Morning Breakfast Club. She shared their love for new recipes, new jokes, new gossip, as well as the news of their family’s lives. Her face lit up when she interacted with them. He loved the simplicity of her life but knew she worked hard not to show the heart ache she still felt. He walked from the diner to her house on the last night before he would go back to New York. As he walked up the steps, he heard Sarah talking to someone and he could see her sitting on the sofa, curled up in a blanket talking on the phone.
“Allison, I think I could fall for this guy. He is gorgeous. He has a heart of gold. But the best thing about him is his laugh!” Sarah pauses for a second takes a sip of sweet tea and continues. “It is definitely a panty dropping moment!” She is giggling and then she looks up to see Henry standing at the door. “Allison, I have to call you back. I think he just heard what I said.” “I will. Love you. Call you later.” Sarah hung up the phone and felt the heat rise to her face. “You heard me.” He smiled and nodded. “Well, it’s true! Your laugh is one of the sexiest sounds I have ever heard. And I would drop my panties in an instant.” Henry’s face became serious and he said, “Let’s see if we can make this happen.” He moved closer to Sarah and put his mouth to Sarah’s ear. The laugh was deep and throaty and Sarah felt the electricity run through her body. In an instant, she dropped her panties and kicked them across the room. She stared into his pleasantly surprised eyes and she heard him sigh. He moved closer to Sarah and they both stared intently into each other’s eyes. Sarah made the first move but kept her gaze on Henry. She unbuttoned his shirt, slowly ran her fingers across his chest and playfully caressed his nipples. She heard Henry moan as he pushed her body against his and she could feel his hardness against her. Henry hands moved eagerly across Sarah’s breasts as he reached the bottom of her T-shirt and pulled it off of Sarah. Sarah unhooked her bra releasing her breasts into Henry’s capable and willing hands. His fingers expertly moved across her body sending shivers up and down her as he kissed her mouth, his hands moved to the area where her wetness greeted him. Sarah unbuckled, unzipped his pants and watched as he slid them off onto the floor. Henry pushed her against the wall and lifted her hips as he entered her. She met his rhythm and hungrily found his mouth again. She called out his name and grabbed onto him as she felt the orgasm reach climax and her whole body shuddered with pleasure. He called out her name as he thrust into her and felt his body release as he reached climax. She held onto him and he stroked her hair. He quietly whispered her name. They walked quietly to the bedroom where they lay in each other’s arms and no words needed to be spoken. Sarah watched Henry sleep. He quenched her desire and spoke to her heart in a way that no other man could. She fell asleep to the sounds of Henry’s breathing.
To be continued.

The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club

Thursday Morning Breakfast Club

        The ocean breeze blew as Sarah ran down the beach before her shift at the diner.  5 am was the magic hour on the beach and she loved every minute of her run.  It was the time when she could be alone and gather her thoughts as she prepared for the long work day.  She ran along the ocean and let the sound of the waves take her to a quiet place in her mind.  Today was Thursday and she always looked forward to the church group that arrived every morning promptly at 9am.  This group of loyal customers, who had been coming to the diner for 10 years, included an eclectic group of friends that had shared their lives together as friends for over 50 years.  They all had left imprints on her heart and she shared in their happiness, sorrow, anger, death, and love.  Most people look forward to Friday or the weekend but Sarah could not wait for Thursday.  Today was a special day for the group.  Arnold, the oldest of the group, a spunky and feisty 91 year old, fought in WWII in the Battle of the Bulge and loved to share his stories with anyone who would take the time to listen.  Even though she would never let the group know, Arnold was Sarah’s favorite and she loved to listen to his stories.  He could bring the stories of war to life and Sarah felt like she had taken a trip back in time.  She had a friend who worked at a famous magazine in New York and Sarah thought Arnold’s knowledge and storytelling would make a great story for the magazine.  When she contacted her friend Allison, she agreed and today, the magazine was sending a reporter to do a story on Arnold.  Sarah could hardly contain her excitement and Arnold was thrilled but nervous to share his stories.  As Sarah walked up the steps to her house, she checked her email.   The email stated Henry Shaw would be arriving around 10am to set up and do the interview with Arnold.  Mr. Shaw will be staying for the week to conduct several short interviews with Arnold.  Then her friend added a statement at the end the made her stomach do a flip flop.  Allison wanted Sarah to get back out into the dating world.  Since she had broken up with her boyfriend almost a year ago, Sarah had not even attempted to date.  She delved into work and tried to forget about that side of her life.  So when she saw the last line of the email she smiled.  It said Henry is single and gorgeous.  Sarah, turn on your charm, and take a chance.  Love you!  Allison.  The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club wanted Sarah to find love too.  They always tried to set her up with blind dates and encourage her to do the online dating sights.  Sarah would indulge them but she was tired of playing the games.  She wanted love but it was going to take someone special to knock down the walls she had built up over the last year.   As Henry Shaw drove in from the airport with a smile on his face and Sarah Capstone opened the diner with a smile on her face, their worlds were about to collide with the magic of storytelling and a whole lot of love.

        Laughter tingling in the air, glasses clinking, coffee being poured, orders being taken, and conversations overlapping each other are what Henry observed as he walked in the diner and surveyed the tables looking for the man in the picture. He immediately felt at ease and he loved the down home feel of the diner.   The slam of the door caught Sarah’s attention and as she looked up to greet the new patron, her heart immediately started beating faster.  Allison said Henry was gorgeous but Sarah felt her breath catch as she stammered out a Hello and welcome to Capstone’s.  Sarah noticed his ocean blue eyes and as he walked up to her, she started fidgeting.  She grabbed menus and shuffled them back and forth.  He met her gaze and held out his hand to introduce himself.  “Hello.  I am Henry Shaw from “Daily Living” magazine.  I am here to interview Arnold Livingston.” Henry put his hand into Sarah’s to shake it.  Henry noticed Sarah’s long, brown hair that complimented her bright green eyes.  Sarah tried to steady herself as she was taken by the British accent as he spoke. “Hi.  I am Sarah Capstone.  I own the Diner and I am pleased to meet you.  I will walk you over to Arnold’s table.”  She led Henry to the table. Henry loved the lilt of her southern accent.  He wanted to get to know this girl.   

“Good Morning everyone.  This is Henry Shaw.  He is here to interview Arnold.”  Sarah pulled a chair up to the table as Arnold and Henry introduced themselves.  Henry seemed to fit into their circle of friendship and as she walked away to give them a few moments to talk, she heard a deep, throaty laugh that made her heart skip a beat.  What was happening to her?  She wrote the book on keeping herself steady and not letting anyone break her tough, independent exterior but Henry was different.  Something inside of her was changing.  She ignored the thoughts.  She walked back over to the table.  She knew The Breakfast Club’s order by heart but she asked Henry what he would like.    

“Arnold said you have the best pancakes and bacon.  So that is what I will have with black coffee.” He smiled and proceeded to say how much he loved the diner.  He kept talking and Sarah could feel her palms start to sweat.  In fact, she could feel drips of sweat slide down her back. “If it is ok.  I would love to interview you as well so I can include the diner in the article. Let me know a good time that we could talk.  Maybe over dinner.”  Sarah felt the blush start from her face and travel down to her toes.  “Mr. Shaw. “  He interrupted her. “Please call me Henry.”  “Sure, Henry.  I would be glad to help you out.  We could meet tonight for dinner.  We will talk later.  I will let you enjoy Arnold and his friends.”  Sarah smiled, turned around, and felt proud that she was so assertive.  She did not want to run and hide.  In fact, she wanted to get to know Henry Shaw better.  As Sarah, walked away, Henry knew he not only wanted to interview Arnold but he was intrigued by Sarah.  He couldn’t wait for dinner tonight.  As he sipped his coffee, he listened to The Thursday Morning Breakfast Club tell their stories and he felt charmed not only by them but by the beautiful owner of the diner, Sarah Capstone. 

To be continued.