Daisy pulled into town and into the parking spot in front of the bridal shop. It was almost noon, and she noticed that the store was open and that Kimberly was inside. She got out of the car and walked inside, Kimberly came running towards her and threw her arms around her neck and gave her a tight hug.
“Oh, Daisy, we were all so worried about you!”
“Thanks, who called you to come in? Don’t you have class or something?”
“No, not today, I was free this morning, and Melody called asking if I could come in. Graduation is tomorrow morning so today was a free day. Why don’t you go home, I have everything under control here.”
“Um…yeah…ok, are you sure?”
“Absolutely, but you might want to go see Melody. She has been a basket case all day.”
“Ok, yeah, I’ll do that. Thanks, Kimberly.”
As Daisy walked out of the shop and down toward the café, Melody came running towards her. “Oh thank God, I was so worried about you. By the way, your parents want to see you, they were worried sick as well.”
“Yeah, I understand you told everyone. I know word even traveled to Boston that I was missing.”
“Well, I felt like he had a right to know.”
“Did you know he was in Boston?”
“No, I was just calling his cell, and I had no idea he was up there until Mike told me that the Boston PD was asking for updates on his behalf.” Mel gave her a hug and then pulled back and looked into her eyes, “He was scared Daisy, I called up there to give an update and talked to Scott. He told me that Chris broke down he was so worked up and afraid of what might have happened to you.”
“Well, no more worries for him, I’m safe and fine, and I’m going to go to mom and dads. Kimberly has the shop under control.”
“So what happened to your car?”
“It died, it is in the shop, it had been acting up lately, and I guess it is just old. I can’t really afford a new car, I have to see what it will cost to repair and then see if dad can fix it.”
“Does you phone work now?” There was a hint of sarcasm in her voice when she asked this question.
“Yeah, evidently I was in a dead zone so I had no service. I wasn’t ignoring anyone, believe me, I didn’t like being stranded any more than you all liked worrying about me.”
“Ok, I’ll talk to you later,” she said, giving her best friend another hug.
~ * ~
Daisy had been at her parent’s house for a few hours when there was a knock on the front door. Thomas went to the door to answer it and came back to the kitchen a moment later, “Daisy, there is a gentleman at the door to speak to you.”
“Me? What in the world?” She got up and started walking toward the door, her dad following close behind. “Hi, I’m Daisy, can I help you?”
“Mrs. Evans, I have a delivery for you. My name is Byron, and I’m from the local Audi dealer. I have a delivery for you, your husband asked that I bring a new vehicle out to you,” he held out the keys, “I will need to have you sign this documents indicating you took delivery, but it is all ready to go. Don’t worry, we brought it out on a flatbed so we didn’t put any miles on it.”
Daisy stepped out onto the porch and looked at the new Q3 in the driveway; it was blue, damn him it looked like Captain America blue. “Byron, right? I can’t accept this car.”
“Ma’am it’s paid for and taken care of, I just need your signature to prove that I delivered it,” his voice was shaky, he had never expected someone would turn down a vehicle.
Thomas walked over to his daughter and whispered in her ear, “Sign for the young man to leave and then you can call him and yell at him. But it is not this man’s fault, and he can’t take the car back if Chris has already paid for it.”
Daisy nodded in agreement with her father and stepped over to sign Byron’s delivery receipt. He provided her two sets of keys and copies of the purchase paperwork. He offered to give her a tour of the car and the unique features, but she respectfully declined. As Byron left, she marched into the house and got her phone, feverishly dialing his number.
She did not wait for him to say anything when he picked up the phone before she launched into her tirade, “What in the actual fuck do you think you are doing buying me a car and having it delivered?”
“Well, good afternoon, Daisy. I’m glad to hear the car has arrived, do you like it? I had to guess at what you might like.”
“Do you think you are Christian Grey just buying gifts and delivering them? Do you think I can’t afford to buy a new car on my own?”
“I think, that for right now, I’m still your husband. Our divorce isn’t final, and I’m not going to go through what I did today because you are stranded in the middle of nowhere in a piece of shit car. I won’t have it, Daisy!”
She didn’t know what to say, she knew that Melody told her that he had been upset that she had been ‘missing’ but here he was actually admitting it to her. “It’s too much, Chris,” the tone of her voice had softened.
“No, it’s not. Your safety and security mean too much to me and if that means I buy you a car so that I have peace of mind, then that is what I do.”
“Thank you, for the car, I will pay you back for it.”
“Don’t insult me, please, Daisy. It’s a gift, and I don’t want you to pay me back. I know, you have pride, I get it. But please just be gracious and accept it.”
“So, you were worried? You had the Boston PD involved?”
He let out a soft chuckle, “I was, you could say, worked up. I have friends on the force, I just asked that they keep their ears open for anything, I wanted to know right away and not when Mike or Melody would have the guts to call me.”
Daisy began to walk away from her dad, towards the far side of the porch. “I wasn’t sure if you still cared. I mean, I haven’t talked to you since you left.”
“Well, that is not entirely true, I did send you a text message.”
“Yeah, a response that was a little cold and hateful.”
He elected to ignore her comment, instead deciding to change the conversation back to her, “Daisy, were you scared? I mean when we were thinking you were missing, were you scared or were you safe?”
She swallowed hard, she had hoped no one would ask, and before now no one had, “I was on a deserted road that had evidently been closed shortly after I turned on it. I guess there was flooding down to the south that I didn’t know about so they road was closed, and I had no cell service.”
“So, you were in an isolated area with no cell service and a dead car?”
“Yeah, pretty much and I had no idea when someone might come by. I have to say that I was pretty scared, I didn’t know what was going on or when I would be found. I guess they were searching for me, thanks to you and Melody. I owe you for that, thank you,” her voice was barely audible as she said the words.
“Then repay me by taking the car, baby. You were scared, and no matter happens between the two of us, I don’t want you feeling like that again when you are out driving around.”
“I didn’t mean to scare you, Chris, I swear. I was just driving over to Springwood for dinner and didn’t realize it was going to rain or flood. And it was so late when I finally left to head home, and it was dark, and I got turned around.”
“Why were you in another town having dinner? That isn’t normal for you, especially by yourself. What aren’t you telling me, Daisy?”
“I’m not sure why I have to explain any of it to you. But, in the essence of being polite, I had a dinner meeting in Springwood. I didn’t have a choice, that is where he wanted to meet.”
“He? You met a man in Springwood?” His voice started to get a little louder. “We aren’t even divorced yet, and you are stepping out on me?”
“Oh my God, I’m not having this conversation or the argument it will cause over the phone. I will only tell you that I am not, as you say, stepping out on you. I had a business meeting, not a date, so get your briefs out of a twisted bunch and calm down,” she took a deep breath and counted to ten before she decided to move forward. “I appreciate that you were scared and thank you for helping to find me. And, thank you for my new car,” there was sincerity in her voice, and she hoped he understood that she meant it.
“I’m glad you’re accepting the car,” he said with a heavy sigh, “Daisy, before you hang up, you need to know something.”
She sighed, she wasn’t sure she wanted to hear what he had to say, “What, what do I need to know?”
“I love you, no matter what, I’ve never stopped.”
She hurried and disconnected the call and shoved her phone in her pants pocket and began walking back towards the front door. As she approached her dad asked, “Are you alright, pumpkin?”
“Yeah, fine,” she responded tersely and walked into the house, letting the storm door slam behind her.
Thomas took out his phone and send a quick message to Chris, “She’s really pissed, you must have told her you loved her.”
Chris send back a simple, one-word response, “Yep!”
~ * ~
Melody pulled onto Daisy’s street, it had been an exhausting day, but she was so glad that her best friend was safe and home. She had talked to Chris and was relieved to know that he had calmed down. She knew he was upset but until Daisy was safe, she had no idea just how upset he had really been.
As she pulled up to Daisy’s house, she noticed the shiny new car in the drive. That was not something she had expected. She figured that had to be a gift from you know who. She got out of her car, admiring it as she walked up the drive; she had to admit he had style.
Daisy swung open the front door as Melody approached, “Can you believe he bought me a car? He said he didn’t want to worry again about me being stranded somewhere in a piece of shit car.”
“Well, you did tell me you couldn’t afford a new car, and you were worried about paying for the repairs to yours. So, this is a good thing, right?”
“It sends a weird message, he doesn’t want anything to do with me since he goes back to LA but yet he worries about my safety and buys me a car?”
Melody walked into the house, eyeing Daisy carefully as she did. “Wait, you talked to him? When?”
“He called me right after the car was delivered, he wanted to know how I liked it. I, of course, gave him a piece of my mind and told him I didn’t need him buying me a car, and I wondered who the hell he thought he was.”
“I’m sure that call ended well,” Mel said with a laugh, she of course already knew. “So, he told you he was really worked up about your missing status? I’m telling you, he was really torn up. I’m honestly surprised he didn’t fly down here. I have a feeling if you had not been found when you were, he would have. I think he would have gone looking for you himself.”
“He told me that no matter what happens between us that he still loves me,” she sat down on the couch and looked up at Melody, “how do I respond to that?”
“You should have told him the truth; he gave you the door, and all you had to do was walk through it. I think you like fighting him too much. You love him, you admitted it to me, and you admitted it to your parents – just tell him! You need to get over this fear of him thinking you are crazy because you obviously aren’t worried about everyone in town thinking you are.”
“I know, I think I open my mouth and instinct kicks in and I argue with him. I’m my own worst enemy. Did you talk to him? I mean that’s a stupid question, I know you did. But I mean did you really talk to him?”
“Yeah, we chatted for a bit, but we didn’t talk much about you. I didn’t ask him how he is holding up if that is what you want to know. It isn’t my place to ask him that, you need to be asking that, not me,” her answer was firm, and she hated that she knew information that she was withholding from Daisy. But it was for her own good. “Look, Tangie and I were talking, and she has a great deal for Orlando, so I booked us tickets. We leave tomorrow afternoon so we need to go and pack.”
“What? I can’t go to Florida, I have a shop to run, and I can’t just close down.”
“Yeah, I know that, so I have already talked to Kimberly, and she has it covered. I’ve even talked to your parents about it already. You’ve had a rough few weeks, and I think you need to get away – get away from everything and just relax. A week in Florida, come on we’ve talked about going to Disney for years and Tangie said this deal was a no-brainer.”