Just a Breath Away

By Colleen

 

This is an alternate uber story. The physical descriptions of the two lead characters may remind you of two others we all know and love, but all characters in the story are from my own imagination. This story is an original work and is copyrighted by the author. It cannot be sold or used for profit in any way. Copyright July 2009

This story depicts a loving relationship between two consenting, adult women and contains scenes of intimacy, but nothing too explicit. If you are under 18 years of age or if this type of story is illegal in the state or country in which you live, please do not read it. If depictions of this nature disturb you, you may wish to read something else.

Feedback will be welcomed at coleen30@webtv.net

I have also created a group for discussions of this, past and future stories. Join us at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/colleens_corner

 

Chapter 3

 

The next week, Carson 's mom took her to see a new house that had just gone up for sale. It was in an older addition called Whispering Trails. With lots of tall trees and well maintained homes, it had a very cozy feel. Del had sold a few houses in this neighborhood and was well acquainted with many of its inhabitants. She pulled up to a single story, ranch design house on a corner. The brick structure had great curb appeal, nice landscaping in the front yard and a charming front porch.

“Well,” Del said, “what do you think?”

“It's lovely. I really like the yard.” Carson looked around at the rest of the neighborhood. “Looks peaceful and inviting. It certainly is different from Cal … Let's take a look inside. I'm actually anxious to see it.”

Del smiled. “Good. And that's not my commission talking.”

That made Carson laugh. Walking into the house, Carson was once again impressed by the homey feel it gave off, even without furniture. The recently rejuvenated hardwood floors were beautiful, covering every square inch of the house with the exception of the two bathrooms and the laundry room. Carson especially liked the built in bookcases surrounding the fireplace in the family room. She had plenty of books and photos to display. The good-sized kitchen offered plenty of cabinet space, granite countertops and new stainless appliances, something else she wouldn't have to purchase. Carson enjoyed cooking, but didn't see the need to do it for just her. But she did like to entertain her family. And as soon as her son was eating grown up food, she envisioned making good use of the space. The rooms were decent size, but not large. A perfect room for Logan was directly across the hall from the master bedroom, which had been remodeled to enlarge a walk-in closet and had added a master bath with a large tub. That would really be nice, she thought. After Logan goes to sleep for the night, a long hot bath would be wonderful, especially on these cold nights. Her previous bath had been mostly marble, and in black and white. Carol had called it classic. But to Carson it just felt cold and hard, and she never spent any more time in there than was necessary. But she could luxuriate here. One good thing about living alone, at least with no other adult, is that she could decorate any way she wanted. Carson smiled, finally starting to feel optimistic about this move. Rounding out the house's attributes was a large, fully finished basement. And the price was reasonable too.

Carson was just about sold on this house. She knew they could make a good life here. It was close enough to her new job, shopping and her parents. Even in the winter grayness, Carson could envision the summer beauty. She liked to work in the yard, planting flowers and keeping things tidy. She could take walks with Logan . Maybe there would be some other children close to Logan 's age. There would be plenty to keep her busy.

Del took her daughter to the house next door to meet the nice older couple that had lived there for ten years. Del had sold them the place, and later she had found a house for their daughter's family. They were well acquainted.

A trip directly across the street had Carson being introduced to a young couple who were also newcomers to the area. They were both teachers, but the wife was on maternity leave, just about to give birth. A future playmate for Logan .

Del saw one more familiar face as a dark red SUV drove by. “Oh, good,” she said. “I was hoping she would be home now. There is one more person I want you to meet.” Del led Carson down the street. “Hello,” she called out as they approached the drive that the car had pulled into.

The woman stepped out of her vehicle and turned at the sound of the voice. “Hey Del. How are you?”

“I'm great. I just sold another house on the corner and I'd like you to meet your new neighbor. This is my daughter Carson Galloway.”

Drew Dixon smiled, almost laughing pleasantly. “Yes, we've met. Hello again Ms.Galloway.”

Carson was a little embarrassed after their last departure. And she wondered what fate kept putting them in each others paths. “ Hello Dr. Dixon .”

“How wonderful,” Del said. “But if you are going to be neighbors I think you should be on a first name basis. So just how do you two know each other?” Carson briefly explained their two previous, coincidental meetings.

“Your daughter and grandson are delightful,” Drew told the older woman. “And I look forward to getting to know them better.” Something occurred to Drew as her gaze drifted down the street. “Are you talking about the brick house down there?” After seeing an affirmative nod, she continued. “I love that house. I've always wanted to live there. I like my house, but that's always been my favorite in the neighborhood. Congratulations.”

Carson nodded. “Well, it's not a done deal yet.”

“Oh get it,” Drew said enthusiastically. “You'll love the area. It's quiet. Well, relatively, depending on what time of year it is. Come on inside, we'll have something to drink and I'll give you the gossip on the neighborhood. How's that cute little boy of yours?”

“Oh he's wonderful. He's spending a few hours with grandpa.”

The doctor placed a kettle of water on the stove and retrieved tea cups from the cabinet. “Have you seen the park just behind the last street?” she asked. “You and your son can have some great playtimes there…once it gets warmer that is.”

Carson grinned whenever she thought about her son, and missed him when he wasn't in her arms. “Yeah, mom told me about it. Are there many children in the area?”

Drew set out an assortment of teas; she remembered that's what Del preferred. She added milk, honey, lemon and sugar, something to suit anyone's preference. “There are about half a dozen teenagers around,” Drew answered, “and you only have to be wary of two of them. Personally, I've never had any problems, but I have heard from others.” Carson was definitely going to ask about those specifics in the near future. She just knew they would have more chances to talk. “There aren't any other babies,” Drew continued, “that I know of, but a couple of older toddlers and a few other children under ten.”

Carson nodded. “Sounds like a good mix. But I'm sure I'll have to watch out for those bicycles and skateboards come spring.”

“Definitely. I am on a committee, trying to get a special park built for those kids to ride safely. As soon as you move in, I'll be pestering you to sign our petition.”

Carson giggled. “I doubt you could be annoying, even if you tried Doctor. But I will sign that document.”

They spent the next hour with Drew, drinking tea, laughing and chatting. Carson found herself surprisingly relaxed around the tall woman. The doctor was smart, easy going, had a great sense of community and an infectious smile. Carson sensed that Drew was the kind of person that made instant friends with just about everyone she met.

Del was having her own thoughts as she watched the two young women interact. She had always liked Drew. And she knew Drew was going to challenge Carson 's recent timidness. Her daughter needed someone her own age to spend time with. As much as Del and her husband loved their daughter, they couldn't really give Carson what she was going to need to get her spirit back on track. And although it was much too soon to expect Carson to have a romantic relationship, maybe knowing Drew would be a good first step.

After meeting the nice neighbors, it was a done deal. Carson Galloway bought herself a new house.

 

* * *

 

Carson 's two brothers had volunteered to help their sister move her heavy stuff so she wouldn't have to hire professional movers. Duncan had a huge pick-up truck and they had all of her furniture into the new house by two o'clock . Carson sent them off shortly after. She didn't want to keep them from their wives and children all day on a Saturday.

Carson was getting another box from her car when she heard a greeting. She turned toward the sidewalk. “Oh hello Dr. Dixon.”

“Your mother would have a fit to hear you still being so formal. It's Drew.”

Carson laughed. “She would. Hello Drew.” She saw the little white canine sniffing around the grass at the edge of her lawn. “I didn't know you had a dog.”

“Oh, he's not mine. My sister had to go out of town for a week and I volunteered to take care of Sebastian.” Drew nodded toward Carson 's new house. “How's it going?”

“Coming along. My brothers got all the heavy stuff in this morning. But I still have a lot of boxes to haul inside.”

“Yeah, I caught a glimpse of them earlier. Must be nice to have a couple of strong siblings.”

Carson chuckled. “They do come in handy. But they both have families and I took up enough of their time.” She juggled the awkward package in her hands, having some second thoughts about letting her brothers leave so early. Oh well . I'll be tired, but I'll get it done. Keeps my mind active anyway.

The friendly and curious dog wanted to go closer and see this new person. He was a very social animal. Drew let out his leash, but followed him up the drive to let him visit. Coincidently, she could visit too.

Carson put the box down and rubbed the curly haired animal. She would have liked to have had a dog, but she didn't think it was wise with Logan 's asthma. “Hey there cutie,” she said to him. “Is your aunt Drew a good babysitter huh? We may just have to call on her sometime.” She looked up to see Drew smiling. She was truly charming.

The doctor was all for that. “Absolutely. With my choice of career, I obviously love children. I'd be happy to watch Logan anytime I'm free.”

“I was just joking,” Carson said cheerfully, rising to her feet.

“I wasn't. Seriously, I'd love to keep the little guy. I'm sure you could use some time off. I imagine single parenthood is rough.”

“It has its trials,” she admitted. Carson went to retrieve the box, remembering to lift with her legs, especially with a doctor watching.

“Let me help you with the rest of these,” Drew offered.

“Oh no, that's too much to ask.”

“Honestly, I want to help. I am a fantastic neighbor, if I do say so myself. Just let me take Sebastian back home.” Drew started back toward her house. “Don't move anything heavy until I get back,” she warned.

When Drew returned, they grabbed one of the bigger containers. It wasn't overly heavy, just a bit awkward and they walked carefully, maneuvering up the three steps and into the house. “This goes into my bedroom,” Carson instructed and led the way down the hall.

Naturally curious, Drew took a moment to glance around the room, which held an unmade, queen sized bed, a chest of drawers and a cabinet, whose open doors showed a sleek television inside. She passed by a huge walk-in-closet as she followed Carson back out into the hallway. The house seemed quite functional and beautiful as she admired the hardwoods beneath her feet.

The blonde pointed to a closed door. “We need to be quiet. Logan went down for a nap just before my brothers left. One more reason I convinced them to go. They still tend to rough house with each other. They're just a couple of thirtysomething teenagers.”

Once they were back outside, Drew said, “I don't have any brothers, just one sister. And to tell you the truth she's a bit of a spoiled princess. Don't get me wrong, I love her, but we are so totally different.”

“I always wondered what it would be like to have a sister,” Carson pondered. “Growing up, my brothers were very protective when they needed to be, but they didn't really like playing with their baby sister…even though I could have been just as tough as they were. Unfortunately, by the time I reached my tomboy stage, Duncan was already seventeen, and Brett was nineteen and off to college. I really hope we can be closer now that I'm back home again.”

“I'm sure you will,” Drew said. “You do have one thing in common now, you're a parent.”

Carson smiled. “Yes. That's the best part of my life.”

For the next hour they worked together taking boxes into the new house. Drew paraded her good natured goofiness by cracking jokes about herself. She even did a silly imitation of a hula dance when she found a travel guide to Hawaii in an open box of books. Carson welcomed the levity. To laugh again with another adult made her soul feel pounds lighter.

They moved around quietly inside so as not to wake the baby. But inevitably, his nap ended long before they were done. “I'll be right back,” Carson said. Carrying a slightly cranky baby, she returned, noticing the clock on the wall. “Do you like pizza?” she asked her new neighbor.

Drew was a bit surprised by the question, but answered promptly. “Yeah.”

“If you don't have anywhere else to be, please stay for dinner. It's not much, but it's the least I can do to thank you for all of your help.”

Drew smiled. “Well, the words are enough, but I would like to stay.”

By the time dinner arrived, Logan was in a much better mood, in fact, he was in baby heaven as he sat between the two women who lavished attention on him. After mommy filled his tummy with some yummy food, the dark haired lady played peek-a-boo. Then she made silly faces at him, making him giggle loudly.

Drew was able to divide her attention and talked to Carson as the blonde cleaned up from dinner. “I believe you mentioned a new job before. Where is it?”

“I was really lucky to be hired by a company that's letting me work from home three days a week. I'll be an illustration editor for children's fiction, reference and text books. My sister-in-law will be watching Logan the other two days.”

“Sounds like a great arrangement. Do you have a background in art?”

“I studied some art in college. I can sketch pretty well, but that's about the extent of my mechanical artistic skills. But I have a great eye for other talented artists and an appreciation for beautiful aesthetics.” Carson 's eyes lingered, subconsciously, on the doctor's attractive face.

Drew took a tiny hand and kissed it. The little guy had magnificent, big green eyes that laughed as much as he did. “He has your enchanting eyes,” she said as Carson sat back down at the table.

Carson didn't want to correct Drew and make her feel bad, but she didn't want to ever lie about her son's parentage. “Well, thank you. But he's not mine, biologically. My ex gave birth to him. My cousin was the donor, so I guess I was lucky that he does resemble me in some ways.” She smooched her son's chubby cheek.

“I'm sorry,” Drew said. “I shouldn't have assumed.”

Carson smiled. “No, it's fine. I know everyone is going to think that. And although I wish it was true, I couldn't love him anymore.”

“That's obvious.” Drew cupped the back of the baby's head and he grabbed for her other hand, playing with the long, nimble fingers. “I don't know the situation,” she said gently, “but I sense that this lucky little guy ended up with the best deal.”

They talked about more casual things for next hour and a half. It turned out that they had a lot in common. They both liked to watch, but not participate in a lot of different sports. They liked to spend time outdoors when the weather was nice. They had the same taste in movies and television, and they liked to play all kinds of games. Children and family were a big part of their everyday lives and they both had charitable spirits.

After some good laughs, Drew finally noticed the hour. “Well, it's getting late. Thank you for the pizza.”

“Thank you for the muscles.”

Drew giggled as she kissed her new little buddy on the top of his head. “Oh, anytime. Goodnight Logan . Night Carson .”

Carson escorted her neighbor to the front door and watched as Drew made her way home. She turned back inside to get Logan ready for his bath.

She let him have a little playtime, and as he was splashing in the water and chewing on his rubber duck, she was thinking back over the evening. “You've made a new friend, haven't you little man? You like Drew don't you? I do too. She's funny. And I certainly need to laugh. You make me smile little man, and laugh too, but mommy needs some adult companionship once in a while. I need a friend.” Carson rubbed the soft washcloth over his silky skin as she had more thoughts. I hope she didn't think I was flirting with that comment about her muscles. Because I wasn't. I guess I was just trying to be funny. I don't want anything from her, but friendship.

 

Sometime later, as Carson sank into her own tub of warm, soapy bubbles, her muscles sighed in relief. But it had been a productive day's work. And the company was good too. In fact, she knew her body would have been hurting more if it hadn't been for Drew's help. Carson laughed out loud as she once again pictured Drew playing her imaginary ukulele and doing her dance, which resembled a pendulum on a clock more than a hula.

For the first night in many weeks, Carson fell asleep without an ache in her heart or a tear in her eye.

 

* * *

 

Carson hitched her son higher up on her hip. They had been out for a walk around the neighborhood on the unusually warm winter day, when Drew drove by on her way home from the office. The schedule Drew had made with her partners gave her Saturday and Sunday off. She worked late, until 8:00 o'clock on Mondays and Tuesdays. But the rest of the week, she usually made it home by 5:30 . Drew honked and waved, anxious to see her new friends. The duo returned the gesture and walked over to her drive, where they caught up on the day's happenings.

“How about taking in that new action flick on Friday night?” Drew asked as she cuddled the baby who had reached out for her to hold him.

There was no hesitation on Carson 's part this time. “Well, if I can get a babysitter, sure.”

“Great. Oh, let's hit an early showing. I won a free coupon for two complete dinners at Half Court , that's that sports bar over on Benson. We can go there after the movie.”

* * *

 

Carson cheerfully padded out to the mailbox after she saw the truck pull away. Bringing the stack of mail and one small package back inside the house, she sat at the kitchen table to sort through the pile of envelopes. She had just moved in and already was receiving junk mail and ads. Tossing those unwanted pieces into a box to go to the recycling center, Carson was left with two that needed action and a large yellow envelope. Not recognizing the return address, she was a bit wary, but it looked safe enough so she carefully slit open the top. She pulled out several sheets of paper stapled together and on top, a loose, neatly typed cover letter. There was also a smaller envelope that she could tell contained photographs. Carson started reading.

Dear Ms. Galloway, I was hired by a party, who wishes to remain anonymous. My task was to investigate the business and personal dealings of Ms. Carol Chasen. I have enclosed my final report. If you have any questions or need any further clarifications, please feel free to contact my office. Yours truly, Jonathon Anders.

Carson put the papers on the table as she pondered the situation. “I can't believe this. Who would have hired a private investigator to follow Carol? It sounds like the plot of a book.” She sat in silence for several minutes, watching Logan in his play pen. It was over now. They were doing fine on their own. She didn't need to know anything else about her ex. Carson picked up the bundle and her hand hovered over the recycle box, second thoughts suddenly creeping into her mind. “But, what if there is something in here that could affect Logan 's future?” The papers and photos made their way back to the table. Carson took a deep breath and began reading again. The first page dealt with Carol's profession, her position with the consulting firm of Gowan and Streep. Her working hours, salary, business trip schedule from the previous year and comments from her co-workers, gathered stealthily of course, were all included. “Okay,” Carson said, “this all seems normal. I remember these trips, one week a month she went to San Francisco . What's the big deal?” She knew there was more, and that it had to deal with Carol's personal life. “Was there something I didn't know?” Carson asked, flipping to the second sheet. Daily trips to the gym for one hour. Normal lunches with co-workers or alone at nearby restaurants. Again, everything seemed normal for Carol Chasen. Carson breathed a sigh of relief…but that was very short lived as she turned to the final page. She read silently. During every trip to San Francisco , subject was observed making nightly visits to The Strap, a BDSM club or Mingle, an exclusive, members only fetish club. “Oh my God,” Carson whispered. “More secrets…more lies. No wonder she didn't want to have sex with me; I couldn't satisfy her… particular needs. Damn her! On top of everything else, she cheated on me with who knows how many others.” There was still more. Carson learned that Carol's visits to these establishments continued throughout her pregnancy and she was still engaging in sexual activities. However, the report said, subject was never observed smoking, indulging in drugs or imbibing alcohol. Carson rubbed her head, which had begun to pound. She looked at her son, smiling at his naive actions. “Thank God for small favors,” she said. But another thought soon entered her hurting head. Carson remembered the night just before she left, when Carol had sex with her…unprotected sex. “You bitch! Who knows what you may have exposed me to.” She intended to call for a doctor's appointment the next morning for every test necessary to make sure she was healthy. A call for a plane ticket to California was also going to be on her schedule. Carol Chasen was going to pay for her mistakes.

* * *

 

Carson had avoided looking at the photographs all day. But the more she thought about the things she had read about Carol, the more her…morbid curiosity was roused. She was sure that her sensibilities couldn't be any more appalled. But she was wrong.

It was after midnight . Carson sat on her bed, staring dumbfounded at fifteen, four by six inch photographs. Each one featured Carol's face and other naked parts of her anatomy. Also present was at least one other, equally nude woman, and in most of the pictures that one was tethered to Carol's leash. The most shocking and enraging depiction showed Carol's very pregnant belly and engorged breasts being attended to by a couple of very willing servants. The look on Carol's face was one of masterful pleasure.

Nausea quickly set into the pit of Carson 's stomach. She shoved all the pictures to the floor and curled into a tight ball, determined not to let her past mistake control her present. “It's all over,” she whispered, reassuring herself.

 

* * *

 

Carson tossed the stack of revealing photos onto Carol's desk. “Do you want to explain?” she said in a testy voice.

Carol quickly glimpsed the pictures of herself, but held her dispassionate mask in place. “Would you like a critique of the photographer's talent,” she asked, “because frankly I don't think they're very good, or do you want me to confirm that that is me?” Carson 's angry visage spoke louder then a thousand words. “Okay, yes that is me.” Carol stood and rounded her desk, stopping next to her ex-lover, leaning her backside against the polished wood. “Don't tell me, you're thinking of taking up the leather and you want a few pointers.”

Carson was still fuming. “I don't care how many others you…” there was only one word for it, “…fucked. I want to know how you could involve our unborn son in your depravity.”

Carol inhaled loudly. “First of all, what I do is not depraved, it is specialized pleasure. Second, just how did I involve our unborn son? No one was touching him directly. No one was molesting him. He won't have any memory of the situation. I never take illegal drugs,” Carol continued, “and while I was pregnant I never drank alcohol, hell I wouldn't even be in a room with a smoker. I did…do care about him. And I can certainly assure you that no one ever physically hurt me. What I do is about me.” Carol studied the blonde's profile, the jaw tensing in rhythm. She leaned closer. “I don't think this is about Logan at all,” she said, sensually. “I think you do care how many women I…fucked. I think you are jealous.”

Carson didn't take the bait. She kept her gaze on the wall ahead. But she could see every look and every move from the corner of her eye. And she felt Carol's penetrating gaze. “That's ridiculous,” she simply said.

Carol reached out, stroking the golden hair. “Do you want to know why I chose to visit those places for my pleasure?” she asked. “I respected you too much to dominate and humiliate you.”

Carson jerked away from the touch, recoiling against more unbelievable words. But she remained tempered. “Oh, you respected me too much to hurt me physically, but you sure as hell didn't respect me enough to honor our monogamous commitment.” Carson 's head shook in pity. “Another lie,” she spat, “it just never stops with you.”

Carol's expression saddened. “Think what you will Carson, but I had to do what I had to do. There is one thing I never lied about. You are the most beautiful woman I have ever laid my eyes on. But, I guess you don't believe that either.” Carol looked over her shoulder at the photos again. “There are no photos in that stack from Mingle,” she mentioned. “But I'm sure you heard all about what kind of place it is.” She grinned sensually. “Aren't you curious about what fetish I needed to satisfy?”

Carson sneered. “I don't give a rat's ass.”

Carol chuckled lowly. “Well, you're half right.” She stepped behind her ex lover, wrapping an arm around Carson 's waist. Her other hand trailed over Carson 's tight, delicious behind. “How about I show you…for old time sake?” Her lips landed against an ear, where she nibbled pleasantly. “I still say you're jealous.”

Carson 's eyes popped open. She sat straight up in her bed, quickly checking to see that she was alone. Her chest heaved with heavy breaths. “Why did my anger at her turn into an erotic dream? Damn it, I am not jealous!” Carson decided that a trip to confront Carol would be useless. She rubbed her ear, still feeling the warm breath…and still feeling dirty. That trip to the doctor was definitely still in order.

 

* * *

 

Grandma and grandpa once again came to the rescue on Friday evening. In fact they were hosting a sleepover for Logan 's three older cousins too. With her son in good hands, Carson met Drew by the doctor's car at the pre-arranged time. Carson thought it was only practical to take just one car. The conservation of fuel and cutting back on auto emissions was very important to the environment. She was always thinking about her child's future.

Once at the theater, Drew strolled up to the ticket line and fished two twenties out of her pocket. She watched as Carson opened her purse and counted out an appropriate number of bills for an admission ticket. “I've got this,” Drew said. “I asked you here.”

“I'd really rather pay my own way,” Carson told her, perhaps a bit more strongly than she had meant to.

“Oh, okay.” The cadence of the doctor's voice once again held a touch of disappointment.

Carson suddenly felt bad. She hadn't wanted to hurt Drew's feelings, but she wanted it to be clear that it wasn't a date. It was just two friends seeing the same movie. But friends can share things, she conceded. “How about we get a jumbo bucket of popcorn and split that hefty price?” Carson asked.

“With butter?”

“Is there any other way to eat popcorn?”

Drew smiled. “Not that I know of.”

* * *

Later, at the restaurant, while munching on hot wings and chili fries, Carson asked, “So how did you win this free meal?”

“One of the receptionists in the office put all of our names in for some radio contest.”

Carson grinned slyly. “Maybe she expected you to ask her to share it with you.”

Drew chuckled. “I don't think her girlfriend would have cared for that. And I wouldn't date anyone I worked that closely with. That's always a big mistake.”

“One you've made before?” Carson asked curiously.

“Well…not exactly…but…” The doctor studied her dining companion's intense and sincere eyes. She felt as if that stare could pierce her mortal cloak and see into her very soul. While just a bit unsettling, it was far more fascinating. Drew ferociously bit off the end of a celery stalk and shook the remainder at her friend. “You know, you have a way of making everyone actually want to spill their proverbial guts…no matter how embarrassing.” The smile behind the words erased any harshness.

Carson leaned across the table and whispered, “It's my secret super power.” Privately, she thought, I just wish I could discover when people were telling lies.

Drew began her mildly scandalous tale. “When I was in med school…I started dating one of the professors. I wasn't in any of her classes, but I did attend a few of her lectures.” Seeing the surprised, but non-judgmental expression on Carson 's face, she quickly continued. “She was an intriguing older woman…and when I say older, I don't mean older . I was twenty three and she was thirty six. I thought she could teach me about life. But all I learned was that wisdom doesn't always come with age. But for me it comes with experience.” A chorus of cheers came from the bar, where the basketball game was playing on the television. They were both momentarily distracted as they checked the score. “So, are there any big mistakes in your past, dating life?” Drew asked casually, as she chose another barbecued flyer.

Carson swirled a carrot stick around in her bowl of blue cheese. “Only one,” she answered pensively. “But it was a huge one.”

Drew didn't ask for more information. She could tell by the pain in Carson 's voice, that it was a touchy subject. “I guess everyone has had at least one bad relationship. But you always have to have hope for the future.”

To be continued...

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