Sophies third book sold better than her first and second combined. Her, Charles, Rowne, & Carol decided they needed to go on a trip to celebrate. With Sophie one month into pregnancy they couldn’t go to any amusement parks but that didn’t matter because Carol insisted they had to go to Sea World for a week starting this Saturday. “That’s oddly specific” Rowne said looking at her suspiciously. Carol smiled “It is and we need to go. It’ll be fun and we’re going to meet sombody wonderful”
“I know better than to ignore you Carol, Sea World tomorrow it is. Hopefully I can get us good seats on a flight and in a nice hotel. Can I go upstairs and use your laptop to book us?” Sophie said with a smile. “Of course honey, you and Harlan run right up” Charles rolled his eyes wondering why Carol insisted on still using his newly given name instead of his old one. Draven spoke again “who is it Carol? Is it someone from Tresnia” Carol winked and Rowne hoped she was leading him to Drea. He had already asked Charles and Sophie that if they found Drea, if they would be comfortable with them being together. Charles and Sophie saw nothing wrong with it. It wasn’t like the two were related and it wouldn’t make them related if Drea and Rowne got married in this world.
Corina rechecked her suitcase for her trip tomorrow. She couldn’t wait to get to Sea World and just enjoy herself. Her work as a doctor had been wearing her out lately and she needed to recharge and take a break from the hospital. She couldn’t think of a better way to unwind than a week at Sea World. Some of her friends had wanted to go but they were all from the hospital and the point was to separate from the hospital completely for awhile. She knew if they came they would probably just talk about work since they all pretty much lived there.
“This is so exciting.” Sophie said as she sat in Charles’s lap.
“Rowne is nervous.” He replied.
“I hope she remembers everything for his sake. He really needs her.”
He kissed her softly then smiled. “I am so glad I have you my love. Being without you was hell so I know how he feels.”
“We need to go pack.” He lifted her and carried her back downstairs. “We’re going to go pack, we’ll be back after.” He said and Rowne jumped to his feet. They all got in their car and Charles drove them home. Rowne wasted no time, impatiently throwing things in his suitcase and getting frustrated when he couldn’t find something. “Daddy you need to calm down.” Sophie said and he pulled her into a hug.
“I need her Sophie, do you understand? I really need her. I’ve been waiting for a second chance for who knows how long.”
“I know dad, but if you don’t calm down and take a breath you might forget something important.”
“I know, I’ll try.” She left him and went with Charles to help him pack their things. He already had the suitcase down and was putting clothes inside. She made sure everything they needed would fit and he laughed because she had a special way of folding everything and would redo it if he didn’t do it the way she did it.
“It all fits though doesn’t it?” He laughed harder and kissed her.
“Yes love, perfectly.”
They headed out with Charles carrying their suitcase. Rowne was already waiting by the car, tapping his foot as Charles out their suitcase in the trunk. They climbed in and hurried back to Carol’s. She smiled happily at them, dinner already set on the table.
“Please Carol, confirm for me if it’s Drea. I’m going to go crazy”
“It is Rowne, her name’s Corina Bookchild. I don’t know how we will find her in such a big park but I know she’s going to spend a week at Sea World. We have a week to hopefully bump into her. I wanted to surprise you but I don’t want to torture you.” Rowne got up and hugged Carol “Oh thank you, I just had to hear you say it was her” When Rowne sat back down Carol said “Just like I told Charles, I don’t want you speaking to her first. You wont be able to control yourself and you’ll scare her. If we see her Sophie or myself need to make the first connection alright?” Rowne nodded and Carol grabbed his hand “Once we get her ok with the idea I’ll give her all her past memories back just as I did Charles, you and Sophie. Once she’s willing to let me she will remember everything, I promise”
“what’re we going to do if she wont listen? Sophie wouldn’t listen for years”
“You and Drea are soul mates Rowne. When she sees you she will feel that bond that Sophie felt once she came here. She should also be having dreams of you from time to time. All reborn souls will occasionally dream of their past life. There are also some like Sophie who dream about it all the time because the soul longs to be back with its pair so badly. Lets just hope Drea dreams of you as much as Sophie dreamt of Charles”
Sophie got up and hugged Rowne “It’ll be ok daddy, she loved you until the day she died. I’m certain she dreams of you like I dreamnt of Charles” Rowne hugged his daughter a moment then excused himsefl for bed. The flight Sophie booked had them leaving the airport at 6am so they had to all be up by 4am to make sure they weren’t late. “we all better get some rest. I’m really sorry the only flight available was at 6am”
“That’s fine, the earlier the better. Rowne is so anxious but who could blame him”
Corina dreamed of him again, of his warm loving eyes and his protectiveness of her. She itched to touch him, to kiss him and hug him. She needed him. She jerked awake right before her alarm went off. She switched it off and sat for a minute. Her heart wrenched on pain and she felt like crying. Every time she woke from these dreams she felt so alone like a part of her had been stolen away. She got out of bed and pulled on clothes. She didn’t worry about eating, deciding to grab something at the airport.
Rowne jumped out of bed the minute his alarm sounded. He turned it off and hurriedly dressed. He could hear that Sophie was in her bathroom and knew she was probably throwing up. He decided to cook breakfast while they got ready. He felt bad for being in such a rush. He was excited about being a grandfather again. He almost laughed at the thought. Biologically he would be the child’s uncle, but in his heart and soul he was its grandfather.
“Hey dad, sorry to keep you waiting.” Sophie said as she and Charles came into the kitchen.
“It’s okay baby girl. Here, try and eat.” He put a couple of pancakes on a plate then handed her a fork and the syrup.
Carol came down and they all ate quickly. Rowne found himself getting impatient again. He knew he wouldn’t get to see Drea right away, but the thought of being in the same city was exciting.
“Calm down Draven.” Carol said as they piled into the car.
“Don’t call me that. It’s Rowne, it will always be Rowne.”
“I’ll say it as many times as I need to. Your names are the ones that were given to you by your parents. In this life you are Draven, Charles is Harlan and Sophie is Carrie. You three can use the old names but I’ll stick to your new ones.” Rowne sighed, knowing fighting Carol on it was pointless. It wouldn’t be so bad if he didn’t hate the new name he was given. Charles drove so Sophie could sit in the back with Rowne and try to help him settle down. Corina was still eating her muffin when her flight was called. She stuffed it in her mouth and quickly boarded the plane. Once she was comfortable in her seat she opened up a book that Stella had suggested to her. It was Coming Of Age by Carrie Abrams. Stella told her it was about this young girl going on her coming of age journey with her best friend Charles. Stella promised that if she liked the book that she would loan Corina the second and third one.
Stella had loaned this book to her about two months ago so she was going to read as much of it on this trip as she could so she could give it back. Stella didn’t mind but it bothered Corina that she had kept it for so long. Stella was such a sweetheart and Corina was glad her brother was going to marry her. Lupin of course made an ass of himself since Jasper decided to marry her after only a few months but they were in love and Corina couldn’t see a better fit for her brother. She shook her head as she remembered the disagreement coming to blows. Lupin was always causing fights and she wished he would stop antagonizing their brothers and their father all the time.
Jasper normally kept a cool head with Lupin but when he got engaged to Stella Lupin finally found a soft spot he could poke at and make Jasper fight with him. Corina wasn’t really sure what Lupin got out of fighting with Luther, Luther Jr, Jasper and Braxton but it seemed to be his favorite thing. She opened the book and began to read. She was quickly sucked into the story. Corina loved the main female characters name, she had always loved the name Sophie.
Rowne stared out the plane window, watching the world below passing by. He wondered if Drea was also in the air or if she was already there. He closed his eyes,seeing her beautiful face. He had dreamed of her every day of what he would say once she was standing in front of him. He wondered how she would react when she saw his face again. Would she scream and run away? Would she jump into his arms or pass out from shock? His wild thoughts had his heart beat alarmingly fast. Carol grabbed his hand, startling him.
“It’s okay, take a breath.” She said with a warm smile.
“Sorry, I’m terrified she won’t want me or she won’t remember. How many life times did we spend apart? If it were not for you and Sophie’s books then I would have brushed my memories off as dreams. Now that I know, I can never go back to being without her.”
“I know honey and you won’t have to be without her, but we must play this right.”
“I know, thank you auntie Carol.”
Corina stared at the name of one of the characters in the book for what seemed like forever. Rowne. It stuck in her head, echoing and drawing up images of that man. Even the character’s description was the same as her dream man. She didn’t understand how this was possible. She had never met Carrie Abrams, had never written her a letter or anything like that. Rowne, that name conjured up images of love and devotion. She closed the book, her heart beating frantically and her breath coming out in gasps. She told herself it was just a coincidence.
“are you ok miss?” A man sitting beside her asked “yeah, I get nervous on flights” she lied. “want to hold my hand?”
“No thank you”
“It was worth a try” When the plane finally landed Corina was stiff and hadn’t made it much farther in the book due to Rowne. Her heart flipped again when she said his name in her head. Corina almost left the airport without fetching her luggage. She laughed at herself and went to baggage claim. Once she had her things she got a cab and told him the hotel she was staying in. It was quite a drive from ¬†the airport since she got a hotel really close to Sea World so that she could just take the shuttle to it every day. The man parked so he could carry Corinas luggage for her. She gave him a very nice tip for doing so.
Corina just wanted to relax but she needed to call her father. Luther always worried when any of his family traveled. She pressed the two on her phone to speed dial her father. When he answered she told him the flight went well and that she was safe in her hotel room. He thanked her for calling and apologized for needing to jump off because he was working. Corina then called her mother.¬†Shante didn’t worry as much as Luther but she still appreciated the call so she would know her children were safe. Her mother didn’t answer but Corina knew she was probably in court and would call back when she could.
Shante couldn’t keep her phone on her in the court room and Corina had her phone on silence when she was at the hospital so the two were used to playing phone tag. Drea laid down on the bed for a few moments then got ready to grab something to eat. She knew park food would be over priced so she stopped at Burger King and ate quickly before heading over to Sea World. She had already purchased her tickets online so getting in was fast. Corina didn’t understand why so many people waited until they were here to buy their tickets.
When they finally landed and disembarked Carol had to remind Rowne to grab his suitcase. He trudged to baggage claim and hurried out of the airport with his family following close behind. “Where are we staying?” He asked.
“There is a hotel not far from Sea World.” Carol answered as she waved down a cab for them. They put their luggage in the trunk and climbed in.
He sat there bouncing his legs, wanting to hurry and start looking for her. He knew Sea World was big, but he wouldn’t stop until they were together again. “She’s here, I just know she is.” They finally got to the hotel and checked in, getting three rooms. They took their luggage up and met back in the lobby. They hopped in the shuttle and were on their way to Sea World.
Corina loved the sharks. She walked slowly down the long tunnel, admiring the large creatures that swam slowly towards her. It was eerie feeling like she was in their world. She actually got goosebumps. She pressed her hand against the glass, standing as close as she could to get a good look at them. She felt like prey in the instant that her and the shark were nearly nose to nose. It then veered up to swim over her and disappear on the other side.
“Charles you stay with dad since you are the only one that can hold him back. Carol and I will search for her together.” Sophie said. Charles got a sad look on his face and she pulled him down for a kiss. “We’ll get to spend time together, don’t worry.”
“I love you Sophie, stay safe.”
“I love you too.” She kissed him one more time before hooking her arm on Carol’s and walking away. She wanted her father or be happy, wanted to see him smile.
Corinas phone rang and she jumped. She smiled when she saw her mothers name. “Hey mom”
“Hey sweetie, I’m finally getting a lunch break.”
“Jeez, it’s three”
“I know, this one man made me late for all my other hearings. Don’t tell your father but he somhow got a gun into my court room and was thretening to kill his ex wife.”
“Oh my god”
“I know, your fathers heart doesn’t need that type fo strain but I know he’s going to hear about it”
“Is he taking his medicine like he should”
“I make sure he takes it every day, don’t worry”
“I try not to. It just worries me since he feels he doesn’t need it”
“He can’t say no to me when it comes down to it” Corina giggled “I know that’s right. Go eat while you have the chance mom”
“alright baby, be safe. Come visit soon. Your father and I are missing you so much”
“I will mom, I just came to Sea World because I needed a break”
“I understand, I’m sure being a doctor is stressful but we are both so proud of you. Are you still general or have you picked a specialty?”
“Still general. I think I’m going to stay general”
“Whatever floats your boat. We are just so proud to say our little girls a doctor”
“I know, have a good lunch and be careful.”
“Always” Corina hung up smiling. She wondered if maybe she should have gone to see her parents instead of coming here or atleast invited them along. She shook it off, she wasn’t going to guilt trip herself and ruin her trip. She wold be seeing them at Jasper and Stellas wedding anyway. Corina felt really thirsty so started looking for somewhere that sold drinks. She wanted a souvenir cup. She liked to collect the souvenir cups from parks. She walked around until she found a stand that was advertising them. They had four different ones, she didn’t want to carry them all so she decided to buy one a day. She purchased the polar bear one for today and had them fill it with Dr Pepper.
Corina opened up the map trying to decide where she could go next. She saw in only ten minuets they were going to have a show with some Seals. It didn’t seem that far and she could make it if she hurried. Corina quickly moved through the crowd. She would take lots of pictures of the show for her friends. They made her promise to take photos of everything. Carol and Sophie were passing where that show was going to be held and Carol said “Lets watch this show. Somthing is telling me that this is where we should be.”
“Like I said at the house, I know better than to ignore you. If you say we should watch this show, lets watch it.”
Corina found a seat behind a pair of women. She couldn’t see their faces, but she could tell one was older than the other. She thought maybe an aunt or mother. She sipped on her drink and pulled out her phone and switched to the camera. The trainer came out and introduced herself then and talked a little bit about seals. It was interesting and educational. She then called out the seals and Corina took picture after picture as they did tricks. Someone bumped her from behind and she dropped her phone. The young woman in front of her picked it up and turned around. They both froze and stared at each other. She knew that face.
“Here, this is yours.” The woman said and Corina took the phone from her.
“Your face.” Was all she could say.
Rowne stared depressed at the polar bear swimming under water. He hated he had to wait to see Drea. Charles was taking pictures of the bear, wanting to have something to show Sophie when they met up again. “Hey stop making that face, you’re bringing me down.” Charles said and nudged him with his elbow.
“Sorry, I can’t help it. This is so frustrating. How did you not go mad without my daughter?”
“I just kept telling myself she would come around eventually and I kept myself busy.” He patted Rowne on the back. “Just give it some time. Sophie and Carol would never let us down.”
“I know, I’ll to enjoy this place.” They walked around, coming to the shark tunnel. “This is beautiful.”
“Kind of creepy. I mean I’m not a wuss or anything, but if get goosebumps just standing here watching them swim.” Charles replied, taking a picture of one of the bigger sharks.
When the show was over Drea stayed close to the two women that had sat in front of her as everybody exited the stadium. When they were outside Corina asked Carrie “I feel like I know you.” Carrie smiled and Carol quickly said “Have you read Coming Of Age?”
“Well she’s the author.”
‘Are you serious! I’ve just started reading it, my soon to be sister in law loaned it to me and it would mean so much to her if you would sign it. I know stuff like this is probably annoying but please”
“Of course I will, where are you staying?”
“Paradise Point” Sophie excitedly said “that’s where we’re staying too. You know my name but this woman is Carol. You need to meet my boyfriend Harlan and my brother in law Draven. We could call them to meet us at the front and we can go get your sister in laws book to sign it” Corina was so excited and hugged Carrie. Corina apologized when she pulled back “sorry, I dont know. I just feel like I know you on a personal level. I hope you’re ok with hugs”
“Hugs are wonderful in fact my family and I prefer them. Why don’t you hug Harlan and Draven when I introduce you.”
“sure, my family is very huggy” Carrie called Charles “Yeah? Did you find her?”
“Yes, I met this wonderful woman named Corina who wants me to sign the copy of my book she has with her. Want to meet us up front so we can go back to the hotel and then maybe grab some dinner?”
“Of course we do. We’ll be there right away”
“They found her?!” Rowne said about leaping out of his skin in excitement “they did, we’re meeting them up front. From how Sophie was talking they haven’t talked to her yet so be good”
“I will, I wouldnt do anything to scare her away.” Carrie put her arm through Corinas “so, will you eat with us? You seem to be alone and I’d love the extra girl tagging along”
“That sounds fun, just no talking about work.”
“That’s fine with me” Carol was a little worried about Corina seeing Rowne with absolutely no warning or being talked to but she had faith that Rowne wouldn’t overwhelm her. Carol hoped that Drea might be able to sort of realize it herself so it wouldn’t be as overwhelming as when Sophie realized who she was. All Rowne had to do was be good through dinner. Now that Carol had a way to figure out Corinas room she could bring Sophie with her to talk to Drea privately after dinner. Carol hoped that maybe seeing Rowne and then being talked to would make things run smoothly. She knew their souls would click. There had been too much love between them for their souls not to.
Corina found Carrie to be very sweet and amazing. She took an instant liking to her and hoped they could spend more time together on this trip. They talked excitedly about their lives, even about work which Carrie was fascinated with. It was nice to talk to someone who was really interested in what she did. “There the boys are.” Carol said and Corina looked up, almost stopping in her tracks.
“This is my husband Harlan,” Carrie said to her “and this is his brother Draven.”
She shook Harlan’s hand then held her hand out to Draven. He took it gently in his and her heart stuttered in her chest. She knew his face, his thoughtful green eyes and happy almost shy smile. “This is Corina.” Sophie continued.
“Nice to meet you.” Draven said and she swallowed. She knew that voice, had heard it many times in her dreams.
“I…I…” She couldn’t say anything else. This had to be a dream, her mind teasing her with her greatest desire. Rowne, the name leapt into her mind again. She let go of his hand and almost cried at the look of disappointment that flitted across his face.
“Where would you like to have dinner Corina?” Carol asked.
“Huh? Oh uh, it really doesn’t matter. We can go wherever after I get the book.”
They left Sea World and boarded the shuttle. She sat next to Carrie and could see Draven watching her from the corner of her eye. When he noticed that she noticed, he looked away and out the window. A warmth spread through her, a happiness she had never experienced before. In her dreams he called her Drea. It was a beautiful name that sounded amazing coming out of his mouth. She wanted to talk to him more, wanted to know why she felt love blooming in her heart for him.
When they were at the hotel they followed Corina to her room. Corina grabbed the book and handed it to Carrie “This si so wonderful of you. You ahve no idea how happy Stella will be.”
“Is there anything you think I should write for her?”
“I have no idea, Hmmm” Sophie sat down “Tell me a little about her, I’d love to give her a personal message since she’s someone you care about. You can call her if you wish.”
“Oh I couldn’t, aren’t you hungry?”
“I’m fine, call Stella and see what she wants me to write. You can put her on speaker phone”
“Thats good because I have to. She has such a soft voice. Honestly she doesnt but its just how she learned to talk.”
“What do you mean?”
“She comes from an abusive home. Her parents used to beat her really badly. It’s why she started throwing herself into books. It gave her an escape from her life. Now she continues reading because she loves it and you are her favorite author.”
“I’m glad I could help give her some happiness.”
“I know, Jasper is going to be thrilled I met you too. Stella is my brothers world”
“well get her on the phone and hand it to me” Corina dialed her sister in law. “Hey Corina, have you started reading the book yet?”
“I did on the plane.”
“Good, I’m so glad. Don’t you see what I was saying? You are like the embodiment of Drea. It was my first thought when I read her description and got to know her as a character” Corina laughed which made Rownes heart flutter. He was glad her sister in law had already pointed out she was similar to Drea. “I have a surprise for you.”
“What is it?”
“I’m sititng in my hotel room with Carrie Abrahms. She is going to sign your book and wants to know if you want her to write anything special.”
“are you serious?” Stellas mouse voice becoming high pitched “I’m serious, I’m going to hand the phone to her. Carrie took it and cheerfully said “Hey Stella”
“O my god hey, are you working on a fourth book?” Carrie chuckled “I will be in a few months. I’m taking a break to celebrate which is how I met your sister. Now tell me what you want me to write.”
“I don’t know, do you agree that Corina looks like Drea from your book?”
“Then write, you can’t deny it anymore Corina, you look like Drea, Stella was right!” Corina and Stella giggled and Carrie opened up the book. She wrote what Stella asked in the cover then Stella said “the books yours now Corina!”
“But you re read Carries books”
“I’ll buy her another one” Corina heard her brother yell. “Hey Jasper!”
“Hey sweetness! Stella needs your help with a few wedding things when you get back. Can you come to our house or better yet, go to dads and we’ll meet you there. When are you coming home?”
“I”m staying until next Saturday”
“Will you fly out to dads?”
“I’ll have to call the hospital. I’ll work it out though ok”
“Ok, we love you”
“Love you too” They hung up. “that was really wonderful of you Carrie. Thank you so much”
“Why don’t I really wow her and come to her wedding.” Corinas mouth nearly fell to the floor “That would be amazing.”
“I want to surprise her so don’t say anything. Can my family come?”
“I’ll have to tell Jasper but sure. He’s a good secret keeper, especially if it’s for Stellas happiness”
“Now, where would you like to eat?” Carrie asked and Corina seemed to think about it.
“Well since we were at Sea World maybe we should have sea food.” She finally answered.
“Sea food it is.” She pulled out her cell and searched for seafood places. “Lets go to a place call MoonFish.”
They left and waved down a cab van. Carrie paid and they all climbed in then gave the driver the name of the restaurant. Corina fought the urge to turn around and look at Draven. She twiddled her thumbs nervously. They got out the MoonFish and went inside where they were taken to a table.
“Would you mind if I set next to you?” Draven asked.
“Not at all.” He smiled and pulled her chair out and pushed her in then sat down next to her. Both of them stared at their menus in awkward silence. Rowne wasn’t sure what to say to her. He had to keep himself from telling her he loved her. The waiter came by and they all ordered. Rowne decided on the lobster with mashed red potatoes and sauteed mushrooms. Corina thought that sounded delicious and ordered the same thing.
“So Carrie said you own a farm.” Corina said and took a sip of water.
“Co-own. Harlan owns half. We’re more like a cattle ranch than a farm. It’s really pretty and peaceful. Fresh air all day and falling asleep to the sound of lowing cows and howling coyotes. It’s an amazing place to live.”
“Wow, that sounds amazing. I would love to live in a place like that.”
Their food came and everyone ate and chatted. Corina listened to Draven tell stories, never once looking away from him. He suddenly grabbed a napkin and wiped the corner of her mouth. She found herself blushing. “Sorry you had a little bit of butter on you face.” He said and went back to eating.
Rowne smiled sweetly at her “It’s no problem.” Rowne said then concentrated back on his food before he did somthing he shouldn’t. Carol was proud as she watched Rowne keep control. She could see how hard he was fighting not to kiss her or stare. Once dinner was over with Sophie suggested swimming which everybody agreed would be fun. They all went back to the hotel, only separating to go change into swim suits. Corina was nervous about her dream man seeing her in a swimsuit. She didn’t know if the real Rowne would think she was as beautiful as he did in her dreams. Corina groaned at herself for thinking of Draven as the man from her dreams. He just looked similar, that’s it. Corina rummaged through her suitcase until she found her swimsuit. She changed then looked in the mirror thinking. “could it really be a coincidence he calls me Drea in my dreams when theres a Drea who looks just like me in Carries book”
Corina sighed “You’re headed for the nut house” she said as she grabbed a towel and walked out of her room. She froze when Harlan, Draven, Sophie and Carol were all standing right there. She blushed and looked away. Draven was blushing too as he saw his loves beautiful, curvy body. He wanted to touch her so badly, to pull her into his arms and press their lips together but he held himself still. It wasn’t worth Drea freaking out and going home. If he let Carol guide him Drea would be his. She had gotten Sophie so he had faith Carol could get Drea.
Carina looked at the floor and blushed as Draven walked by her side. “why so red” he asked softly. “because my mother talked me into this bikini. It’s the first time I’ve worn it”
“If it isn’t too forward, I think you look beautiful. You shouldn’t be embarrassed atall Drea” Corina stopped and stared at the horror struck face of Draven “what did you just call me?” She quickly asked and his heart hammered “Oh um…it was…it was ¬†just all that talk with Stella…how she thinks you’re Drea…don’t mind me Corina. I’m sorry” She just stared as everyone else stood tense and worried around them. Corina sighed yet again “Ok, you just kind of threw me off. I guess I’m a little loopy because you remind me of the man I have dreams about.”
He gave a nervous laugh and rubbed the back of his neck. “Yeah, maybe we’re both just a bit loopy. We should get to the pool.”
Corina couldn’t help but catch the look of pain in his eyes. She didn’t know what to say. She didn’t want to be the cause of it, but she had a feeling she was. They headed to the pool and everyone got in. “Hey Draven, lets see who the better diver is.” Charles said, making Rowne glare at him.
“What do I get if I win Harlan?” He shot back.
“I’ll bring the cattle in on my own for a week if you win.”
“Alright, fair enough.” They pulled themselves out of the pool and went around to the high dive.
Sophie and Carol moved over to Corina who had a troubled look on her face. “Everything okay?” Sophie asked.
“No, I think I may have hurt Draven’s feelings and I don’t even know how I did it. I have these dreams and the people in them look like you, Harlan, and Draven. You all look so familiar to me, especially Draven. It sounds crazy, I know.” She answered.
“It doesn’t sound crazy at all. I didn’t meet Harlan until after my second book had been out for awhile.”
Her eyes jumped to Carrie’s face. She saw images of them having a food fight, laughing and giggling as they made a huge mess. “I’m so confused and a little scared. I know you, not because of the books, but I really know you. I know Harlan and feel great affection for him. Then Draven, his eyes and his voice are just like Rowne’s. There are so many emotions flowing through me when I look at him.” she watched as he stood on the edge of the diving board and jumped off. He did a couple of flips before disappearing under the water. He came back up, taking a deep breath and wiping the water off his face. He moved out of the way and Harlan jumped.
“What did you girls think?” Charles asked as they made their way over to them.
“I call a tie.” Carol said.
“I agree.” Sophie chimed in.
“What about you Corina?” Charles asked.
“I agree, a tie.”
“How about another round?”
“I don’t really feel like it. I’m going to go back up to my room. I’ll uh talk to you later. Thank you for joining us tonight Corina, I had a lot of fun getting to know you.”
Corina felt like crying, Draven seemed so sad and it was obviously because of her. “I had fun getting to know you too” Corina said sadly as Draven walked away. He had to or he really would do somthing he shouldn’t. He couldn’t allow himself to make her run. He hoped he coudl do better tomorrow. When he was gone Carrie put a hand on Corins shoulder and she turned to hug Carrie. “what did I do to him?” Harlan, go back to the room. Carol and I are going to Corinas to have a talk with her. He nodded and they all walked out. Carrie held tight to Corinas hand. When they were in Corinas bedroom the three women sat on the bed with Corina in the middle. Carrie looked to Carol to ask to be the one to speak. Carol gave an approving nod and Sophie grabbed Dreas hand “I know this is going to sound crzy, it took them years to convince me that this was real so please listen and don’t freak out.”
“I’m ready to listen”
“Good, you said you dreamed about a man that looks like Draven right?”
“You realize you look like Drea from my books right and I bet Draven called you Drea in your dreams”
“Well, you are Dreas reincarnation and Draven is Rownes. Unlike you though he has all his memories thanks to Carol. She gave me and your son Charles reincarnation our memories too. You ARE Drea and he IS Rowne. He’s hurting being so near you and not being able to hold you. He loves you just as you love him. I know you felt it, just like you were talking about by the pool. Don’t you truly feel like you know us. Isn’t your souls telling you that?” Drea was left speechless. Drea not saying anything scared Sophie and Carol a little bit. A few tears fell from Dreas eyes. “I believe you….it makes so much sense…. I’ve always wanted Rowne to be real and it turns out he is. This is so amazing” Drea began to cry so Carol and Sophie andwhiched her in a hug. They were grateful she believed them.
“Do you want your memories Drea? I can give them to you”
“Yes please” Drea whimpered out. “go now Sophie, only our energies can be in the room” Sophie gave Drea one more hug then left to tell Charles the amazing news. “will it hurt or anything?”
“You’ll have a headache and you’ll be a tad bit overwhelmed. Sophie passed out, if you do that want me to get Rowne to come in here and lay with you so he’s the first thing you see when you wake?”
“Yes please” They moved to the center of the bed where Carol put her hands on Dreas head and began talking to the spirits. Drea felt dizzy as she heard Carols words. Then before she knew it, just like Sophie she passed out. Carol smiled and got Drea under the covers. Carol grabbed Dreas room key and walked to Rownes room. She pounded on the door and he quickly beckoned her call. “Yes?” He said, his face showing that he had been crying. “We’ve convinced her and I just gave her back her memories. She passed out as Sophie did but she told me that you could come to her. She wants to see you when she wakes. Here’s her room key”
Rowne took it and thanked Carol. He shut his door then just stared at the key for a moment. He pulled on a shirt and made sure to grab his key before heading to her room. He stood in front of her door, unsure for the first time since arriving. He was afraid Carol’s powers might fail and Corina would be left with nothing but confusion and thinking they had lied to her. He unlocked her door and pushed it open quietly. She was sound asleep, looking beautiful. He put their keys on the bed side table then climbe in next to her, pulling her into his arms and burying his nose in her hair.
“Please be my girl when you wake up. I need you Drea.” He whispered softly and kissed the back of her neck. He tightened his hold on her and closed his eyes, forcing himself to fall asleep.
Drea woke the next morning with a horrible headache. She raised her hand and rubbed her temple, willing it to go away. She felt something wrapped around her waist and slowly turned over, instantly smiling at Rowne’s sleeping face. He looked so sad and she could tell he had been crying. She kissed him softly on the lips and he slowly woke up. He jerked back to look at her. “Drea?” She smiled and nodded.
He practically attacked her face as he started to kiss her. Soon Drea felt tears hitting her face as ones of her own slid down her cheeks. When Rowne parted their lips he pulled her into his lap. Tears still tracing his cheeks as he held her close. “I love you Rowne” Drea said softly, making Rowne cry harder and hold her tighter. “I love you too. I’ve been waiting for so many years Drea.”
“well now we’re together and nothings going to rip us apart again.”
“I wont let anything, not even death. I’m going to get Chthon to turn you into a demon too as he did me, Sophie, Charles and Carol.”
“Chthon is here?”
“Yeah, He still lives in Barense but you know how well he travels between worlds. A few of Chthons children live in this world so we just have to contact them and they will get their father.”
“That sounds amazing, lets do it when we get..oh”
“Oh what?” Rowne said in semi panic. “well we live in two different states but I guess I can move in with you. I don’t like the city. I can call the hospital and put in my two weeks notice. Maybe if I’m lucky they’ll just let me go but if I do have to go back to Georgia we will only have to be apart two weeks.”
“could I just go home with you if you have to work two more weeks at the hospital?”
“Yeah but hopefully I can convince them to just let me go since Jasper and Stella want me to go to Washington. Would you come with me there if I go?”
“I’ll go with you anywhere. I just need to be with you”
“want me to go ahead and call so we know what we’re doing?”
“Yes please” Drea grabbed her phone and call the hospital. He was happy she found somebody and told her she could just quit and that he would be happy to recommend her to any hospital she applied to. Drea thanked him then hung up “he’s just letting me go. He was always a nice man” Rowne cried again as he hugged Drea “shhh, calm down”
“I’m sorry, I’ve just been waiting so long. I’ve missed you tremendously”
“well, I’m not going to start at a new hospital until after the Jasper and Stellas wedding. I never had to pay student loans thanks to my parents so I’m pretty well off. I’d really like if you came with me when I go to my parents so you can meet them. These set of parents are very good to me. I was blessed when I came into this life.”
“I’d love to meet them” Rowne said, not moving his face from her neck. “Do you need to ask Charles if you can go since you help run the farm?”
“No, Carrie is well off herself. Her books sell very well. She’ll just keep the guys on for awhile that she hired to work on our farm while we were away. It’s funny, In Tresnia we pretty much took care of you guys but here you’re taking care of us. We weren’t poor but we weren’t rich like you two. Now you are a doctor and she is a author.”
“I would like them to meet my family too. Lets go ask”
“Could I just hold you alone in here awhile longer.” Drea smiled with a warm heart “Of course”
He couldn’t help but kiss her again. Her lips were so soft and warm. He tangled his fingers in her hair and tipped her head back so he had access to her neck. “You have no idea how much I missed you.” He whispered, his warm breath against her skin giving her goosbumps. “Every day I was without you was torture. I thought I would doe without you. I hoped and prayed that I would see you again, that I would get the chance to fully express my love for you.”
She felt tears burning in her eyes at his sweet words. He had always been good at saying what he thought. He had written her so many love letters, telling her every day how special and beautiful she was. He had been the only thing keeping her alive back then. Even when he left her, she woke every morning hoping to catch a glimpse of him. Every day she hoped he would come and take her away. “I love you so much.” She said and felt tears slip down her cheeks.
“Drea, please don’t cry.” He wiped her face and kissed her softly. His tenderness tugged at her heart and she clung tightly to him, her tongue dancing with his as they kissed each other hungrily. He tipped her back onto the bed, untying her bikini top and throwing it on the floor. “I just want to touch you for now. You still need rest and I don’t want to wear you out.” He said softly, making her blush. He pulled her bottoms off and ran his hands over her skin. She moaned and he leaned down to suck and bite at her breasts. He touched and kissed her until she was so wound up she thought she might burst into flames. “You make such beautiful sounds my love. I want hear more.” He pushed his hand between her legs, rubbing her slowly and then sliding his fingers in as he pulled back to watch her face. “Never forget how much I love you.” He whispered and captured her lips with his as she orgasmed. He pulled back to let her breathe, a look of satisfaction on his face.
“Don’t look so smug, it doesn’t suit you.” He kissed her again and she sighed happily. “What about you, should I return the favor?”
“Later, lets go talk to everyone and make sure they are up to seeing your family.”
Drea got out of the bed and dressed herself. Rownes eyes never leaving her. He looked so happy, like he was in a state of absolutely bliss. She loved seeing him so happy, especially since Drea knew she was causing it. She felt a little weak from the orgasm he gave her but she was excited about seeing everybody. She especially wanted to hug her son again. Rowne and Drea held hands as they went to Charles and Sophies room. They excitedly hugged Drea, Charles gave his mother an especially long hug “I missed you mom”
“I missed you too baby. I’ve also missed your wonderful wife. My brother and his fiance would like help with their wedding. I’m sure Jaspers just worried about the stress on Stella. I was hoping you guys and Carol would come so you can meet everybody. I have such a wonderful family in this life.”
“we would love to!” CHarles and Sophie both exclaimed happily. “good, lets go to Carols room and ask her. I do ask all three of you to be patient with Lupin if you meet him. He likes to antagonise.”
“we can be” They went to Carols room and Drea asked her about going and she was excited to meet her family. “I’m so glad, Let me call my brother so he knows we’re coming after we finish our vacation” Drea pulld out her phone and called Jasper. She made sure to inform Jasper she had a boyfriend now which he was over the moon about. “I’m so happy to hear that! I was worried you might spend forever alone or end up telling me you liked women. Not that it would be bad aside from me never getting nephews and nieces from you” Drea laughed “well him and some of his family are coming too.”
“Wonderful, have you called dad yet?”
“No, I’m calling him next”
“I’ll let you go then. I’m about to meet with a client anyway.” Drea hung up and called Luther who was thrilled to get to meet her new boyfriend and his family. “well everything’s taken care of, ready to go to Sea World?” They all smiled and Rowne held her hand a bit tighter. She looked over at him and melted at the way he was looking at her. His eyes were filled with so much happiness and love. Drea couldn’t resist giving him another kiss. Rowne grabbed her face to hold her in it making their family glow with happiness.
They spent the day running around to all the animals, Drea pulling Rowne from place excitedly. He followed, enjoying her happiness. He lived for her smile and told himself he would do anything to keep it on her face. They only stopped when everyone was hungry and Sophie said her feet hurt. “I’ll rub them when we get back to our room.” Charles said and kissed her cheek.
“Here let me try something that might help.” Drea said. “Go ahead and put your feet in my lap.” They were setting in a booth so all the had to do was push off her shoes and stretch her legs across under the table. Drea rubbed her feet, putting extra pressure on the really sore spots.
“Oh holy crap that feels amazing.” Sophie said.
“It’s called accupressure and it does wonders. I’ve had to use it a couple of times of patients with bad backs.”
“Thank you so much.” She put her feet back down and slipped them into her shoes.
“I would still have Charles rub them when you get back though.” Sophie nodded and they enjoyed the rest of their meal in happy silence.
“What’s next love?” Rowne asked as they were leaving the restaurant.
“I was thinking we could ride some rides and then tonight go to this show. It’s called A’Lure, The Call of the Ocean. It looked interesting.” She showed him the picture of the show. “Is that okay with everyone? I’ve kind of been deciding for the whole group.”
“Of course it’s okay mom, we haven’t seen you in such a long time that it’s just nice to spend time with you. We’ll follow you all day.” Charles said sincerely, making her smile.
That day and the rest of the week was filled with fun and laughter. Even though everybody was happy nobody smiled as much as Rowne. He finaly had his chance to be with Drea and he had her forever once Chthon changed her for him. Carol had already gotten in contact with him and he promised to be waiting at Charles, Sophie and Rownes house when they got back from meeting Dreas new family. Drea wasn’t nervous atall when she brought Rowne to meet her family. Luther apparently called all her brothers to meet her new boyfriend. Everybody liked him aside from Lupin but Lupin was just a sour puss in general. Minnie liked him too much but Drea was used to her flirting with everything that had a penis.
Drea giggled at Stella whom she could tell by her face saw the resemblence Harlan, Carrie and Draven had to her favorite authors characters. While Carrie was there she went ahead and signed all of Stells books. Jasper had already bought her a new copy of Coming Of Age. Rowne was just glad to see that this time Drea got the family she deserved. It would have broken his heart to find she was abused in this life too. Stella almost hit the floor when Carrie offered to help with the wedding aswell. Once Jasper was sure Stella was stable he gave Carrie a tight hug and thanked her. “No need to thank me. Corina is important to me and Stella is important to Corina.”
Everybody was sad to part when all the wedding arrangements were taken care of but the wedding wasn’t too far away and they would see eachother again. Jasper sent a long thank you text to Corina a few hours after they left. She showed it to Rowne so he could read the part about how much Jasper liked him. Rowne kissed Dreas head “I’m glad I made a good impression”
“I don’t remember you ever making a bad one. Everyone always loved you except for Maximus, but he was a piece of crap.”
“I’ll always regret not protecting you better. I should have kicked his ass when I had the chance.”
She laced her fingers through his and he brought her fingers up to his lips and kissed them. When they finally got home everyone was exhausted. The dropped Carol off first then headed to the ranch. Chthon was setting on the front porch when they arrived and Drea nearly jumped out of the moving car she was so excited. She ran to him and he wrapped his arms tightly around her.
“Look at you, still as beautiful as always.” He said and she started crying. “Don’t cry.”
“I’m so happy to see you Chthon.” She pulled out of his arms to wipe her face. “You haven’t changed at all. I bet you still have a bad temper.”
“Yes I do, but I never lose it unless the situation calls for it. So are you ready to get this change over with? I have to make sure you understand that it will be painful.”
They all walked inside and were instantly greeted by the dogs. “I’ll do anything to be with Rowne. I don’t want to leave him ever.”
Charles let the dogs out then told them he was going to check on the cattle real quick to make sure no mountain lions or coyotes had killed in in their absence. He had had a friend come over and feed the animals, but other than that nothing was checked on. He saddled one of the horses and road out to the field, counting the cows and coming back when he was satisfied everyone was still alive. Rowne made sure Drea understood exactly what the ritual entailed. He didn’t want her blind sided by anything.
“Alright kids lets get this over and done with.” Chthon said when Charles came back in. Sophie brought him a knife and Rowne sat with Drea, his hand covering hers. Chthon started chanting then drove the knife through their hands. He pulled it out and Drea felt heat moving up her arm and then her whole body was gripped by pain. Rowne pulled her into his arms, whispering an apology as her doctor’s mind tried to process what was happening to her. The pain drove her into unconsciousness and Rowne cried and kissed her cheek.
“She’ll be okay daddy.” Sophie soothed.
“I know. I just don’t want her to hate me. I never wanted to put her through any type of pain again.”
“Charles would you go out on the porch and grab the back of potions I have out there then take out one of the blue ones and pour it on their hands?” Chthon said and Charles nodded.
Once their wounds were healed Rowne carried Drea to their bedroom and laid down with her. He hoped she wouldn’t be too sick when she woke up as he held her close. When dinner time rolled around Sophie brought her dad a plate “you should eat somthing daddy” Sophie said softly and he sat up. He knew she wouldn’t have left him alone unless he ate so he didn’t fight it. Drea woke early the next morning. Her slight movement waking Rowne. “My muscles are killing me”
“One second” He quickly got up and gave her somthing to drink for the pain “what’s this?”
“Somthing Chthon made. It will get rid of your pain” Drea drank it without further question then hugged Rowne. “That wasn’t so bad” She said softly. Rowne ran a hand down her hair “You don’t have to lie” Drea kissed him “It wasn’t that bad since the reward is always getting to be with you. Our first lifetime was horrible watching you with Kyra”
“It was the same for me seeing you with Paul”
“Well, now we will never have to see eachother with another again” Rowne laid her down “rest more beautiful” he said with almost a glowing face he was so happy. “you hungry?’ Rowne asked softly then kissed Dreas cheek. “I guess, I probably should eat.” Rowne didn’t want to leave Drea so texted Sophie. It wasn’t too long later that she brought up oatmeal for each of them. “Thank you sweetheart”
“No problem, you two just rest. One of you can yell or text if you need anything” They ate slowly. Dreas stomach didn’t feel very good but she ate anyway. Once the bowls were empty Rowne set them on the floor by the bed. He pulled her back into his arms as he laid down. “I love the way you look at me” Drea said softly. “I just love that you’re finally here with me…it’s been such a long wait” Rowne said sounding close to tears again. “I know, I wish we could have found eachother again sooner but atleast we did and we have a friend like Chthon to give us eternal life”
“I’ll have to do somthing special for that man”
“I’ll help you, you figure somthing out”
“Ok” She may have been his again for two weeks now but it was still hitting him hard. He didn’t realize just how hard the wait had been until he had her, until he saw those beautiful eyes and smile. Drea was in his arms again and he wouldn’t let anything or anybody take her away. He didn’t care what he had to do but he was never going to be without her again.
~ The End ~