Friday, March 16, 2007

Unanswered Prayers

Chapter Sixty-Seven

There were several videos made by ‘Richland and Marcus Productions’ that day; all laughed at and ultimately erased. But we had an afternoon of laughter and fun, and we both needed that a lot.

Early evening saw us both tired and very relaxed. I opted to take a nice long hot and bubbly bath. Adam of course wanted to join me. I lifted an eyebrow and remarked, “If you think you are getting lucky again, you are out of luck. This body needs some rest,” I laughed.

He only kissed me and hugged me close. “Nope, I’m just looking for a nice warm bath as well. And maybe a nice snog too. C’mon, love, let’s get the water going.”

So we filled our tub with vanilla spice bubbles and turned the jets on before slipping into the deliciously warm water. Both of us laid back and felt the jets start to massage tired muscles and it felt heavenly.

While there was a bit of snogging, mostly we just relaxed. I felt as if my life with Adam involved constant motion; even when we had time to relax, like in California, we were running. That time had been wonderful, true, but I felt the need to just be still for a bit. Lying there in that inviting tub of bubbles was perfect.

I glanced over at Adam; he was lying back in the tub with his eyes closed, and I smiled. He seemed so at peace, only the merest hint of a smile showing in the upturned corners of his mouth. Those silly hours this afternoon spent making naughty videos had brought us some much-needed merriment and laughter. We hadn’t really let loose and laughed like that in days. One of the great aspects about Adam, about our relationship in fact, was that we could laugh together; I just had so much fun with him. The silliest things could bring us to laughter until tears were running down our cheeks. I had never had a man in my life like that before. I shared that sort of joy with my kids, with Cassie, but never had a man crept into that aspect of my life. I had probably never let one in before. I think I was always pretty stiff around men, especially after Randy and I divorced. And he and I had never shared that laughter. There would be times when the kids and I were laughing over some silly movie or something and he would just look at us like we were aliens. Thank heavens we never let it dampen our spirits or the enjoyment of whatever we were laughing at, but sometimes it was hard.

Then Adam came along and joy just seemed to ooze into my life. And amazingly, both of my kids seemed to recognize that it was okay to laugh, to enjoy the time we were together. That mini vacation in California was the first one like that we had ever had, where we all just enjoyed ourselves and let it all loose.

When I first met Randy and fell in love with him, it was during college and his seriousness seemed perfect. I had supposedly left the silliness of high school behind me, and college meant it was time to settle down. Randy seemed perfect; studious and so involved in political issues, environmental issues. Not that he is a politician, he just believed in fighting for what he believed in. And there is nothing at all wrong with that; I believe in that solidly myself. But his causes took all the joy out of his life and eventually out of our life. He was so caught up in the issues that he never let go long enough to remember that life was good. He is still that way today, and while I admire his passion for these causes and issues, they basically destroyed our marriage. He never looked at our family as something to fight for.

In those early days of our marriage I used to thank God for letting me find Randy, a passionate man who stood up for what he believed in. I would lie in bed at night and envision our lives together and how wonderful they would be, and I would pray that Randy and I would be together always. And as reality crept in and life wasn’t nearly as wonderful as I thought it would be, it took me much too long to realize that I needed to let go, had to let go. Instead I prayed for the ability to hang in there for my kids; like if we could just make it awhile longer it would be okay.

I think often of that song by Garth Brooks, Unanswered Prayers. That song has come to be one of my favorite songs ever because it is so true. Sometimes the very things we pray for are the ones that are the worst for us, but God does know and gives you what you really need, whether you understand it at the time or not.

I was beginning to understand, though.

Our peaceful interlude ended when my stomach rumbled. We both laughed, and then Adam stood up and said, “C’mon, I think I need to feed you!”

We put on our robes and headed into the kitchen to see what was there. They evidently had forgotten to bring over the groceries we had bought, and Adam frowned as he surveyed the empty cabinets.

‘I don’t want to go out, Adam; can we just get something delivered?” I asked hopefully.

“Pizza or Chinese,” he said. “Which will it be?”

“Chinese; that was good last week.” Was it only last week? I wondered with a frown. Somehow it seemed like a much longer time ago.

“Okay, Chinese it is. What would you like?”

“A feast – I’m starving!”

He leaned down and placed a kiss on the tip of my nose and then smiled and said, “A feast it shall be then, my love!” He excitedly pulled out his new phone and said, “Oh, I get to make a call on this!”

Which reminded me that I needed to make some calls and give people my new number. I called Mom and Dad first and let them know about the phone number change. I could hear in their voices that they were ecstatic that Adam and I had done this. I’m sure Mom was already picking out wedding dresses for me. I could hear her now, “Tasteful, Sarah, please! Maybe off-white, don’t you think?”

I suppressed a laugh at that thought and kept my mind on answering all the questions they had about everything that was going on. They seemed endless, and I patiently answered them all until at last I heard a knock on the door heralding the arrival of dinner.

I told them that dinner was here and they seemed satisfied to let me get off the phone. “I’m sure Adam is hungry,” Mom said.

“Not just Adam, I’m starving as well,” I told them. “It’s been a long day, it really has.” They didn’t have to know exactly what tired me out so much!

“Well, give Adam our love, sweet pea. And of course we love you too!” Mom said before hanging up the phone.

“Bye,” I said into the buzz of the telephone line. When they got off the phone, they did it quickly!

Adam had the food sitting on the table in the kitchen, looking through boxes of food. I noticed that he had asked for chopsticks, although I only saw one pair. I smiled at that and also thought how sweet it was that he thought about them for me.

While Adam was setting everything out, I went into the living room and turned on the stereo so we could have some music to listen to as we ate. I spun the dial around as I listened to a bit of a song here and a few bars of the next one up. I caught the tail end of At Last on the oldies station and decided to leave it there. Not only did the song bring me some excellent memories about the first time Adam and I had made love in Firenza, I had also put it on the CD I made for us. As I made my way back to the kitchen, Tommy James and the Shondells started singing Crystal Blue Persuasion, and it brought a huge grin to my face. Memories of slow dances at school crept through my mind and I was still smiling when I wandered back into the kitchen.

“What is making you so smile so brightly, my love?” Adam asked as he was popping open the final containers. I had asked for a feast, and a feast he had provided.

“Just this song; it brings back good memories,” I told him, peeking around him to see what all we had.

“Romantic memories, first kisses and such?” he asked, spooning General Tsao’s chicken onto his plate and then putting some on mine.

“Yeah, but really more like first dances; you know, being scared to move because you might step on their toes. Or the first time you feel the body of someone of the opposite sex pressed against yours and you’re afraid that someone is going to yank you apart because something that causes butterflies that big in your stomach must be bad!” I laughed. “I was in seventh grade and it was an afternoon dance. This song was actually pretty old by then, but the teachers who were doing the dance didn’t seem to notice. Or maybe they just didn’t care, I’m not sure.”

“So who was that first boy?” he asked as he took a bite of his egg roll.

“His name was Kevin Reichmann, and he was cute! And about an inch shorter than me, but neither of us cared. I don’t believe either of us led; I’m sure we probably did good just to even sway to the music.”

He smiled as I told him about it and his eyes caressed mine intimately. “It must have been a lot of fun.”

“Yes, it was. Tell me about your first dance?” I asked as I looked through the other boxes to see what else we had. I found something that had shrimp in it and spooned some onto my plate and then looked inquiringly at him and he nodded his head as I put some onto his plate as well.

“I never really had a first dance, not like you, anyway. Living in the wilds or the bush didn’t offer too many opportunities. I learned lots of tribal dances, but most don’t involve body contact!” he laughed. “When I entered the drama program in school, I had to learn to dance, so I took lessons. Pretty boring I’m afraid. I’m sure I was no less nervous on my first close dance, but it was only because I was afraid the director was going to yell at me or something equally embarrassing.” His eyes sparkled as he told me this story, full of life. And then I saw a hint of mischievousness also.

“There is more to that story, Adam. C’mon, spit it out!”

“It was a production of The Magic of Spring and required that the leads, Carolyn Vestignian and I, dance under a full moon. It was dark and quiet and the dance was very slow and um, close. And every time we rehearsed that dance, I got an erection. She was very kind and understanding about it; never said anything about it to anyone or tried to draw attention to my mortification in any way. It was difficult to hide, but working together we managed. As I said, she was very kind, and gradually I got over it, the reaction I mean. By opening night, I wasn’t having that problem any longer.”

“She was very kind; not all women would be. So how did you get over it?” I asked, my turn to be mischievous.

“Ah, you are asking if Carolyn and I took care of it together perhaps.”

“Well, you could have been taking care of it yourself, too, you know!” I giggled.

“Sadly, neither of those things occurred. I sort of just got over it, as the acting bug took over more and more. I began to pay attention to the technical aspects of what we were doing, and it helped to take my mind off of that complication.” He smiled regretfully, his eyes unfocused for a moment as he was lost in the memory. “I’m afraid that Rachel was right about me to a certain degree, love; I was totally devoted to acting and never really gave women that much of a chance. I’m sure there are some out there that feel like Rachel did, that I just didn’t care. Which wasn’t really true; I did care, but building a steady career just always seemed more important, I guess. I must have been wretched to be involved with in retrospect.”

“Adam, many young people are career-driven. It’s not like you set out to hurt those women. Did you ever make promises to any of them?”

“No, I – I was never really even with them long enough for that to happen; other than Penny, that is. And she never wanted a commitment between us. As I told you, she was very much a free spirit. She had been married already and didn’t want complications.”

“Do you have any idea what happened to her, Adam? I mean where she went when she left?”

“Not really. Her ex lived in Oregon; I always sort of suspected that was where she went. I know she talked to him several times before she disappeared. I think she might have grown up in Oregon, and she loved it up there. She just never talked about where she had come from, or she would give answers like, ‘I blew in on the wind and found myself here’”

“You never tried to find her? In Oregon, I mean?”

“No, I didn’t really know where to look. And at the time I decided that if she wasn’t happy with me that it was probably for the best. I knew that I wasn’t making her happy, but I also knew that I didn’t have what it would take to make her happy. Penny always had a faraway look in her eyes, like she was seeing something totally different than I was. She was an idealist; she believed that a utopian society really was possible. She loved what Mom and Dad did and often talked about going to Africa with them.”

“And you had no intention of doing that, did you?”

“No, no way. I had fought my way out of there, out of the sickness and misery, the poverty and corruption, the governments who turned a blind eye to the death and desolation of their people because life is cheap and there are always more people to replace the dead ones. I had to get out; it was hopeless and I couldn’t have stood any more of it.”

“And yet you give tremendous amounts of money to your families’ causes,” I told him, watching the surprise cross his face as I told him that.

“Tamara, I suppose?” he asked quietly. He knew it had to be Tamara who told me that.

I nodded my head and said, “Adam, you are helping. What your parents and sister do is not for everyone, you at least try to make a difference in the best way you can, and money is desperately needed. Don’t beat yourself up over it.”

“I’m afraid I’ve much to beat myself up over; I just don’t know what for sure. Something certainly upset someone, hurt them. It’s hard to accept that and not even have a clue what happened, Sarah. It’s like I’m some sort of monster.”

I let out a huge sigh. He was deeply bothered about this. Of course, the alternative was that it didn’t bother him at all, and that would be far worse. We just had to find a way to get through the next few days, and then the next few weeks and then … what then exactly? There were still so many decisions for us to make.

We were both quiet as we finished our dinner, but the silence between us felt peaceful. I think Adam just needed to vocalize some of those thoughts he had. He does let himself get dragged down by it all, that’s for sure.

“What shall we do for the next few days, love? Do you want to go up to Wichita for a doctor’s appointment or stay here in Dallas? Or we could go back to California and meet up with everyone at the funeral, I suppose.”

It was Tuesday night, so that left Wednesday and Thursday free. It was an intriguing thought, free time. “I want to just relax, Adam. I want to be able to sleep late if we want and not have to worry about being anywhere we don’t want to be.”

He smiled his dimple smile at me then, just a little, and it thrilled me. I hadn’t seen it too often lately, and it hopefully meant he was relaxing a bit. All too often these past few days I had watched his face and seen something terribly vulnerable about it, like he was wearing his apprehension as some kind of cruel mask.

“So you want to lie around in bed? Feel like sleeping, do you?” he asked, the corners of his sexy lips turning up slightly. He was playing with his fork as he spoke, moving it around on the plate.

“Well, I guess we couldn’t possibly sleep all the time. Maybe we could read a bit, too, or watch TV!” I teased.

One side of his mouth quirked up in a funny little smile, an ornery little smile actually, and it made my stomach do a quick flip-flop.

Surely after this afternoon he couldn’t possibly be in the mood? How could he be ready to go again? I was so tired I didn’t even have the energy for a bath! Oh wait, we already had the bath.

His hand reached across the table to take mine into his own warm one. He lightly caressed it, softly tracing over it with his long fingers. Unbelievably, his touches caused my stomach to tighten and quiver with the beginnings of desire. I mentally rolled my eyes; how on earth can he do this to me?

“C’mon, Casanova, let’s get this mess cleaned up!” I told him, gently untangling my hand from his. I stood up and started gathering up the plates and empty food cartons. There had been a lot of food here; I bet I’d gained back those 6 pounds, I thought wryly.

He said not a word to me, only looked at me with the slightest hint of a knowing smile. He was completely helpful and affable as we cleaned up the dinner remnants and loaded dishes into the dishwasher.

“Shall we go into the living room and listen to the music or watch TV or something?” I asked. I was leaning back against the counter, watching him as he closed the dishwasher.

He came over to me and placed a hand on either side of me onto the counter, pinning me firmly against his body. He leaned down and placed a soft kiss on my forehead and then whispered into my ear, “Something? What might that be?” He began to nuzzle my neck, distracting me from whatever thoughts I might have had. I felt his warm mouth slide down my neck to nibble at the tender spot where my neck and shoulder met.

I shivered then, a delighted shiver, and I wrapped my arms around his waist. I felt his arousal against my belly and sighed. Maybe I wasn’t so tired after all!


For the next two days we did nothing but relax; well, if you call making love until you can barely walk relaxing. Honestly, I don’t know where either one of us got the energy.

We had made a run to the grocery store and bought food and wine, enough to hold us for a few days, and that was all the outside world saw of us.

Unfortunately, we had one very unexpected and unwelcome encounter at the grocery store.

We had just turned a corner around an end cap display when I saw a dark blonde haired man standing right in the middle of the aisle, holding a bottle of olive oil and reading the label. I pulled the cart up short because I had come close to running into him. He turned to look at me and my heart sank. Out of what must be hundreds of grocery stores in Dallas, we had to run into him here, I thought grimly.

He stared at me hard for a moment, icy blue eyes taking me in and then focusing on Adam, standing next to me. It was one of those moments you read about; everyone seemed frozen into inaction. I was only aware of elevator-type Muzak playing in the background and the thudding of my own heart. He kept the stare focused on us, and slowly a sneer spread across his face and he said, “Well, fancy meeting you here. Wichita not exciting enough for you now?”

Adam put his arm around me, and I was glad for the momentary support. “Hello Jason,” we both said to him, and I searched my mind for something to help us get past the extremely awkward moment and get us away from his cold and cruel assessment of us. “How is your Mom? Has she had the operation yet?”

“No, next week,” he told me, his eyes narrowing as he spoke. I’m sure he was surprised that I had asked about her. He had probably thought I would get angry with him again. But that would have served no purpose.

“Well, please tell her I hope everything goes well for her,” I said, starting to back the cart up a bit so we could go around him.

He reached out to grab the cart, holding it in place. “Let it go, Jason,” I told him. I squarely stood my ground and stared at him. I could feel Adam next to me tensing, and I knew I had to get us out of here before something happened.

“What, too wrapped up in your fancy life now to chat with an old friend?” he taunted.

“If you were truly an old friend I’d have all the time in the world, Jason, but we all know that to be a lie. I have nothing to say to you, and you certainly have nothing to say to me that I want to hear. Now, let the cart go and we’ll be on our way,” I told him, my voice as frosty as ice.

My eyes strayed down the aisle for a moment where two young women were watching what was going on. They undoubtedly recognized Adam; if his looks hadn’t given him away his accent most definitely had. They were looking and pointing at us, whispering to one another, and I prayed that they would just keep their distance; this was certainly not a time to have to deal with fans.

I felt Adam’s hand around my waist tighten for a moment before he removed it and stepped forward. “Jason, this is no place for an altercation; however, I assure you that if you are seeking trouble, I am able to accommodate you. Now, shall we all behave civilly and part ways so that Sarah and I can be on our way, as you most assuredly would like to be on yours?”

I glanced at Adam and wondered at the look on his face. He seemed more than ready to ‘handle’ the situation; in fact he appeared almost eager to. His mouth was clenched tightly into a frown, and I noticed a small tick at his temple. His sharp brown eyes met those icy blues ones unflinchingly and without fear.

Jason took all this in as well; Adam’s stance and determination. He nodded almost imperceptibly and let go of the cart and stepped back. “Certainly,” he told us, his eyes glancing back at me for a moment. It almost hurt me to see this happen; I never wanted to feel such disgust and revulsion towards Jason, and yet I did. He was no longer the man I had known; in fact it seemed as if he were almost alien to me.

I pulled the cart backwards and maneuvered it around Jason so that Adam and I could finish our shopping. The two women appeared to have lost interest for some unknown reason and were walking away, which was not reassuring to me by any means, I thought, remembering the women at N&J in Wichita.

Our shopping didn’t take much longer, and we didn’t see Jason any more. Adam said nothing about the meeting, and I knew that we would have to talk about it later. I wasn’t sure I had ever mentioned to Adam that Dallas was where Jason had moved when he left Wichita. Actually I hadn’t even thought about it myself. The Dallas/Fort Worth area is huge; it never even occurred to me that we would see him. I didn’t even know what part of Dallas he lived in. It occurred to me that he probably knew that Adam and I were here; it had been all over the news since Rachel’s death that Adam was here making a film, and Jason probably knew that I would be here as well.

We loaded the groceries into the car and got in to head home. As we were fastening our seat belts, I said to Adam, “I’m sorry about all that, Adam. I had no idea we would ever have run into Jason here.”

Adam cast a glance as me as he was starting the car. “It’s not your fault, love, but I don’t believe I ever heard you mention that he lived here now.”

“No, I’m sure I didn’t. I really didn’t think about it much, actually. I mean, Dallas is huge and it never occurred to me we would run into him. I don’t even know where he lives here in Dallas.”

“It’s all right, it all came to nothing. He is very angry and I do understand that.” He looked at me again for a moment as we were stopped at a traffic light, and then he said in a quiet voice, “You are very memorable.”

I blushed bright pink for some strange reason; maybe because those words sounded very sexual coming from Adam. I had the thought that they meant much more than they appeared to. The light changed and Adam moved with the flow of traffic, and soon we were turning off into the housing complex and then into the drive to our condo. We got the groceries in and put away and then decided that we both needed to make calls to family and friends, just to check in. I had a long conversation with Cassie, and it did us both good.

“How is the therapy going?” I asked her. It had been several days since I talked to her. Usually, she was on the go all the time and when I call we get to chat for 5 minutes and then she is off to another therapy session. Today I got her during one of the rest periods she gets, and we were both thrilled. I had settled down on the couch in preparation for a long and wonderful chat with my best friend.

“It’s going great. I start ballroom dancing classes next week!” she told me with a laugh.

“Yeah, well I’ll bet you are dancing circles around them all there as it is. Especially Dr. Gorgeous, huh?”

“Me?” she asked incredulously. “Why, I’d never!”

I started giggling then and couldn’t stop for a minute. “I’ll bet. Dr. Gorgeous probably doesn’t know which end is up with you, Cassandra Elaine Bennett,” I told her, still a bit out of breath from all the giggles.

“Ooh, it’s a full name moment, is it, Sarah Denise Marcus?” She started giggling again, which made me start all over.

Adam was flipping through the channels on the TV, undoubtedly looking for some kind of sports, and he cast me a sideways glance with a perplexed smile before he turned back to his channel surfing.

I asked her how the visit home had gone last weekend, and she got very quiet for a moment and then I heard a distinctive sniff on the other end of the phone line.

“Cass, what’s wrong?” I inquired, worried about her reaction to that question.

‘I – it’s just, well Sarah, for awhile I had wondered if I would ever get to go home or what it would be like if I did. I had visions of having to live with Mom and Dad for the rest of my life – an invalid, you know?”

“Oh Cass, why didn’t you ever talk to me about those fears?”

“I just didn’t. I did actually talk to Georgio about them last week, though,” she informed me. I raised my eyebrows in surprise. There was certainly a lot more to the story of Cassie and Dr. Gorman than I supposed.

“And what did he say?”

“He said those were perfectly normal feelings for someone with injuries like mine, but that there was never any doubt that I would recover, at least as far as he was concerned. He said,” she paused for a moment and I heard a smothered cry on her end. “He said that he would have done anything to make that possible for me.”

“I see,” I told her, a smile lighting my face. “I think I like Dr. Gorman very much indeed. But not nearly so much as you. Am I right, Cassie?”

I heard a muffled giggle and then she said, “I hope not. I don’t think our favorite actor would appreciate it a bit. He seems pretty partial to you himself!”

“You could be right,” I laughed in return.

Things had gone very well for the home visit, and Cassie felt very capable of going home, so she wanted to do that very soon. “I only have to use the walker if I’ve been on my feet for long periods of time now. I’m getting around perfectly fine. Even the steps leading up to the porch weren’t a problem,” she exclaimed.

I told her about the chance meeting with Jason at the grocery store, and she groaned with dismay.

“God, of all the people to run into. There must be scads of stores in Dallas, and yet you pick the one he shops in!”

“That was my thought exactly. I had all but forgotten that he even lived there really. I just don’t think about it.”

“How did Adam react?” she asked.

I glanced over at Adam, who seemed caught up in a soccer/football game on the TV, but I knew he could still hear what I was saying. Not that he would be listening exactly, but still I felt uncomfortable talking about too much of it with him in the same room.

“Not very well, but we all managed to keep our tempers in check. We went on with our shopping and didn’t see him any more.”

“Well, that’s good,” she murmured.

We chatted on for another half hour, until the battery on my phone started beeping to let me know I needed to recharge it.

“I have to go, Cass, the battery on my phone is about to die,” I told her.

“Yeah, I understand. I suppose you are going to Rachel’s funeral?”

“Yes, we will. I’ll call you after that and tell you all about it, okay?”

“Okay. Sarah, thanks for calling. I love you and miss you so much.”

“Yeah Cass, I love you too. Talk to you soon.” I heard a distinct click and the line was quiet. I went and got the charger and plugged the phone in to charge and then snuggled up next to Adam. He put his arm around me and pulled me close to him, and I laid my head against his chest and closed my eyes.

The next thing I knew I was waking up and Adam was lying next to me and we were wrapped around each other; warm and cozy. I peeked over his shoulder and saw that the light was growing dim outside and then ducked my head back down against his chest and listened to his steady heartbeat, softly thumping in his chest.

If only life could always stay this peaceful, I thought.


Here Kristin, you naughty little pirate wench! Well, for all of us really...


Hope said...

Happy Friday!

Yeah! It's cooler, but still nice here and hey, they weekend is just waiting for us, right around the corner!

I want to thank Lizzy, my wonderful proof-reader again, she does such a wonderful job! Lizzy, have a wonderful spring break.

And, I want to dedicate this chapter to someone - my favorite nurse. She'll know why!

Anyone have any suggestions for lunch? After Wednesday's little tug of war over the Delicious Pirate Richland with that other woman, I'm feeling like getting a little wild and crazy!

x5head3pay said...

I'm thinking Mexican for lunch sounds good. I want a fish taco in a bad way.

I had a sneaking suspicion that Jason was going to show up soon. I don't think it was a coincidence either that they were shopping at the same place either. He is too close to NOT be involved!

See y'all for lunch ladies!


Tigger said...

SHAZAM! And here's Jason again.

He is so involved. I don't know how he did those things in Italy, but he is so involved!

And I loved the video camera phone bit Hope, too funny!

Anonymous said...

I hope that seeing Jason has sent off some red flags in Adam and Sarah's heads. He seems cold and calculated. Never a good thing i am sure.

sierra said...

I have a theory. Adam unknowingly got Penny pregnant and she left town before Adam could find out. Penny is Krista's mom and told her that her dad didn't want anything to do with her. Krista is the mastermind behind all the incidents. Sunni knows about it somehow, but isn't saying anything.

Remember the look Sunni gave Krista after the Rachel blow-up incident on-set? Sarah seemed to have forgotten it, since she didn't tell the police about it.

Just a theory.

Kristin said...

Hope, you are a wonderful wild and crazy person! What an awesome post! We all have benifited at some point in our lives from those "Unanswered Prayers". A perfect song to be sure. Thank you dear friend for the reminder that life is indeed good!

Don't you just love technology? I've got visions of a nekid Adam running up and down the hall and am truly distraught I won't be able to find the video at Blockbusters... LOL

I hear Richland is taking a well deserved rest from the lunch debacle Wednesday, and was wondering if Adam has any other alter egos that can come out and play today! Kristin too is flying on the edge of reason today... ; )

catrina said...

Great post, Hope! Yep, Jason is definitely involved....but then I've said that about practically everyone!
Have a great weekend!

catrina said...

I was away from my computer yesterday, and just checked in on Wednesday's comments. Laurie, thank you SO much for your words of encouragement! In the scheme of things, my hubby's situation seems more manageable now! The doctor re-opened the wound and drained it (won't go into details, but for you 'medical' folks, it was green!)and bandaged it. He's to soak it in peroxide twice a day, but still no antibiotics! Thanks to everyone for all the kind thoughts and prayers. This is the second reason I'm here every day---the unbelievably kind people. Of course the first reason is Adam and Sarah! :-0

Hope said...

Just to make things difficult for you Kristin, I've added a pic up at the end of the chapter!

I wonder who he was looking at???

Kristin said...

DUHHHHHH dear girl, that oh so fine piece of man is looking at me! I'll have you know that I am now not good for a flip for the rest of the work day!. I do believe I have found my new desktop background AND screensaver! SIGHHHHHH......

kmorales4 said...

This Jason character is such a PUNK. I'm pretty sure he's not involved in the crimes but if CSI has taught me well, I forsee him as one another murder victim. Let's see if I made a good guess.

deena said...

Holey Moley!

I want to be a naughty little pirate girl too! AND I want to know what's under the bubbles!

Hope, you are just so much fun! I've been away from the computer this week and so got to catch up with everything! Wonderful. So much going on, I'm trying to pay really good attention. Don't know who is doing what really, but you definitely have my attention!

Kristin - I'm warning you, you have to share!

Val said...

Dadgummit! I posted a whole thing and when I hit publish, it disappeared! SHOOT! OK trying it again...

Hi Ladies and our token gentlemen...

Great post today, Hope! Loving the pic there at the end, definitely drooling. SO.DANG.HOT. I see Jason is back, very interesting.

I posted a recipe on Wednesday's comment section, so check it out if you like.

No adventurous cuisine for me today, tomorrow is weigh-in. I doubt I'll lose any, I sprained my ankle last Saturday, and my treadmill has been languishing in the corner. My doc said rest, ice, compression, and elevation... YUK!

Anyway, loving the story, and the comment camaraderie is a wonderful bonus. Have a great weekend ladies. TGIF!


Shar said...

It's rainy and cold here in DC and I'm jealous of Sarahs baths and snogging with that delicious hunk ;)

On a day like this, there's nothing better than hanging out in your PJ's with a nice hot pizza for lunch and a horror movie. Hmmm...maybe I'll skip out of work a little early.

Hope...your blog isn't making my day stuck in the office any easier!

Hope said...

Hey Shar, I live to make things interesting for all of us office dwellers!

I'm so glad you are enjoying the blog!

Hey Val, the recipe I posted yesterday is WW friendly!

Val said...

I saw that Hope, that's awesome. I always love trying new recipes. I'm just sitting here in my chair elevating my foot and icing it and all. I'm so bored I can't stand myself... ROFL!

Kristin said...

Deena- I will be a good girl and share, but you all get him BEFORE the bubbles pop, I get him AFTER!!!

Why Richland, is that your saber or are you just happy to see me!!! (wicked wenchly giggle)

Engbunny said...

Hey Guys! I was so darn busy yesterday that I didn't have time to check in. And yeah, I was a little afraid of what would be said about my post. I only told my story so that Catrina would see that people do get better even when the docs say things don't look too good. I actually try not to talk about this stuff because people find it boring. *smile*

Anyway, back to the important issues at hand. I want to thank Hope for the fabulous picture of Colin Firth. This is exactly who I had Adam pictured as in my head. The picture last week and now this one have made my day. Thank you so much. The story was great today and isn't interesting that Jason is in Dallas? I could see him doing the rat on the bed...

Catrina - just hang tough. It takes time, especially with really deep infections, for things to get better. You and your husband are in my prayers.

And...most importantly...what's for lunch today? *Grin*

SandyOPKS said...

I agree that Jason is definately involved in this web, and I do think Penny is Krista's mom and Adam is Krista's father. Does anything else think this is possible? Hope you are the best. It is a lovely day in Overland Park today. Little cool but definately sunny and beautiful. I SO want Cassie to end up with the good doctor, you can tell she loves him!

Mehreen said...

Wow loving the theory that Krista is Adam's love child! My money's still on Sunni, why would Jason want to kill Rachel? If he turns up dead much drama!

Becky said...

Fantastic chapter, Hope! The more you reveal about Jason, the more his involvement seems possible. I too think Penny was Adam's ex and Krista is the results of that relationship.

Oooooooooh what a delicious picture of Adam/Colin, a wonderful Friday treat (and without too many calories!) I became almost obsessed with him afte Bridget Jones' Diary and Pride & Prejudice! I guess he's mine BEFORE the bubble bath since Deena & Kristin have him IN the tub! No wonder he's smiling, with all us naughty pirate girls!!!!

Hope, I have what I think is an inspired idea for Monday’s or Wednesday’s lunch! Let’s have a vprogressive potluck where you travel from house to house (city to city, state to state, or country to country) to have a different entrée at each place! Because it is virtual, it doesn’t matter if you’re at work or not and whether you are dieting or not – cooking and calories are virtual also!!!

I’ll do dessert and serve my really fabulous carrot cake with hot buttermilk glaze topped off with cream cheese frosting (my mouth is watering just thinking about it and the cellulite is clamoring to move to my hips!). What do you think, ladies and gentlemen?


Recipes for MJ said...

Two simple, tasy recipes for MJ:

Hamburger-Tater Tot Casserole

1 lb. hamburger
1 Med. Chopped onion
1lb. tater tots
1 can mushroom, chicken, or celery soup
1 can cheddar cheese soup

Brown hamburger and onions. Place in 9 x 13 pan. Top meat with tater tots; spread out evenly. Mix together the 2 cans of soup (no water). Spread over top of tater tots. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

An old classic, oh-so-simple but it tastes really good! One of my husband’s faves.

Chicken Spaghetti

3-4 chicken breasts (or equal amount of chicken tenders)
1 can mushroom soup
1 can chicken soup
1 can milk
1 SM can mushrooms
¼ c. chopped onions
¼ c. celery
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 sm. pkg spaghetti
½ c. cheddar cheese

Boil the chicken breasts. (or cook in microwave until done) and cut into small pieces. Break up spaghetti and boil it. In a saucepan, mix the mushroom soup, chicken soup, and milk. Add mushrooms, onions, celery, garlic powder and salt and pepper to taste. Heat Add in chicken and cooked spaghetti. Place in baking dish. Top with cheddar cheese. Bake in 350 degrees oven until the cheese melts.

Very quick. Very easy. Very good.


Hope said...

I'm so glad you all are enjoying the picture of Colin/Adam. Isn't it funny, Adam loves bubble baths and I just ran across these pictures a couple of weeks ago. Yes, you read correctly, there ARE more!

When my website is up and running, I'll put them on there. It is

All that is there right now is an 'Under Construction' message, but by the time this story ends, it will be up and running. There will be message boards and if anyone is interested, I can also put a chat room on it. It will run this story, with an index of the chapters, the new version will also be on there.

It's probably no surprise that there will be a recipes tab and one of my favorites will be the tab called 'Indulgences' which of course will have Colin stuff.

AND, there will be a section called 'Letters from Adam and Sarah'. They have kindly agreed to send us letters once a week or so letting us know what is going on in their lives! I am also planning a new story for on the web, but it will start out very slow - I'm warning you now. Probably will post no more than once a week or so since I will be working on the book version of WMHD.

Boy, it's almost lunch and I am hungry! And thirsty...

Becky, love your idea for the traveling pot luck! I'll start the round out by handing everyone a margarita, icy beer or other drink of their choice before the journey begins! We must do it Wednesday because Monday I shall be at the zoo. There will be a post on Monday, later than usual and it will not be a chapter, but something you will like I think!

kmorales4 said...

I didn't see a picture. Where's the picture? I've got to see that picture. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

mary jane said...

Great post today. I love the video aspect of it all. Wouldn't we all love a copy of the "Delish Pirate Richland"
Virtual travel lunch sounds great for Monday. I will have the staple of New Orleans on Mondays Red Beans and Rice. Also a few Hurricanes on the side.
Thank you guys so much for the wonderful recipes, I have stock piled and am going to be cooking this weekend.
Catrina I am so gald it seems your husband is doing well I will keep you both in my prayers

Hope said...

Karen, just refresh your browser, it's right under the chapter! Or i'll send it to you e-mail if you still can't see it.

You simply MUST see it.

Val said...

yes you simply MUST see it ;)

kmorales4 said...

Lord Have Mercy.

Mr. Colin Firth, how do I describe thee?


This man is the reason why I loved the movies "What a girl wants" and "Bridget Jones Diary" so much. I love that serious look of his. It's so sexy. Did I mention that he's so scrumptious, because if I didn't let me point out that he's SCRUMPTIOUS, SCRUMPTIOUS, SCRUMPTIOUS.

Deena said...

kmorales, did you say SCRUMPTIOUS?

It wasn't so bad when I only had to fight the wench Kristin for him, but it looks like there's a line waiting to hop in the tub.

I will never turn down another bubble bath...

Kristin said...

Sorry Ladies, Richland/Adam/Colin and I were getting rather pruny, so we left the tub. You'll have to find some other pirate scalawag to covet! I hear old crusty Blackbeard and his brother Barnacle Bill are available! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

Jo said...

So I was all set to comment on today's post. Then, I saw the bubble bath picture. What was I going to say? Who am I? Where am I? Duh......?

Oh yeah, great post today. I love learning more about Adam and Sarah's pasts as they learn about each other. And I'm wondering the same things about Penny and who Krista's daddy might be. Hm....

I guess I've pretty much missed lunch. Not much appetite today. We've been in the middle of a sleet/freezing rain/snow and assorted other cr*p storm all day here. I just want to go home and put on my jammies....

....or maybe take a bubble bath......... ;-)

kmorales4 said...

Deena and the everybody,

Just call me Karen. That's the name you'll see in Adam's and my wedding invitation.
What do you think I should be referred to then?
Mrs. Karen Richland.
Mrs. Karen Richland-Morales
Maybe I'll be traditional and be Mrs. Adam Richland
(giggling here)
Either way.

kmorales4 said...

He's mine. so hands off

mary jane said...

OMG!!! I never knew Colin/Adam was sooo devilishly handsome.
I want to be in that bubble bath;)

Matt said...

Come on Hope!

give us regular guys a chance! I like bubble baths too!

Linda said...

Hi all,

Question?? Hope, you mentioned the song "Crystal Blue" that you were in 7th grade. Am I confused? That song came out when I was in the 7-8th grade and I will be 52. Aren't you like 44 in story? Or am I totally nuts here?

Hope all had a great weekend..

x5head3pay said...

Am I missing something? I can't seem to connect to todays post and I am having withdrawl!!!

LENA said...


Anonymous said...

Didn't she take her grandchildren to the zoo. I'd venture to say she is not going to post today and opted for a day of fun with the "kids". Hope everyone is having a great time!!!

Anonymous said...

Hope said previously that there will be a post today but later than usual since she's at the zoo with her family. It won't be a chapter but she said we'll like it. I'm with you though, I need my Adam & Sarah fix!


Sandy said...

Hey, what happened to Mondays post? I know Hope was going to the zoo, just wondered if I missed something else.

Anonymous said...

Did anybody watch "What a Girl Wants" on the oxygen channel last night? The sexy Mr. Colin was looking good... though not as good as the bubble bath picture Hope posted!


Engbunny said...

I love that movie! My husband bought it for me for Christmas. Thank God he understands my love of Colin. *LOL* Actually, even though I am 43 years old, I loved that move. I thought Amanda Bynes was wonderful in it. I may be old but I can remember being young and cute!

Tomorrow I go for my 1 year check up after the original diagnosis but we have already had one good piece of news. I had the first blood test of the group that has to be done and it looks 100% normal so this means I don't have to have a liver biopsy tomorrow! Just an ultrasound and a couple more blood tests to verify what the blood test shows, which is right now, everything looks great. So, I will not be here tomorrow but will check in on Thursday to see what Hope has posted and what you all had for lunch! Have something really good and really fattening in my honor!

kmorales4 said...

Hey everyone,

Today is my one year anniversary. My divorce, that is. Yes, one whole year of irreconsileable difference freedom.

Engbunny glad to hear your good news. I hope the good news keep coming. Good Luck to you.

Hope, where are you? We need Adam.

P.S. I'm pretty sure that irreconsileable is mispelled. But who cares? I'm celebrating today. Drinks anyone?

Lori said...


Congratulations! I, too, am happily divorced. :)

This will be my 6th glorious anniversary of irreconcilable difference freedom.

The ex got remarried and is now someone else's problem. I really wanted to walk him down the aisle and give him away, but alas, I did not get an invitation!

Seriously, I keep things cordial for my son's sake, but as time goes on, I just get more and more signs that I made the correct decision to leave. I am so much happier and I am a better Mom.

You should have a HUGE margarita to celebrate!!

Anonymous said...

Hi evceryone. If you liked (loved?) COLIN in "What a Girl Wants" and "Briget Jones' Diary" you have got to watch "PRide & Prejudice" (the BBC series) - OMG< OMG he is meltingly delicious & sexy... the smoldering eyes (and there is actually a bathtub scene but it is a teaser. Check it out, ladies!


x5head3pay said...

Lori & kmorales,

Congrats! I called my lawyer today and I believe that things are starting to head that way for me. I mentioned before that there was difficulty at home, but yeah - when he requests counseling and the I am the one who goes b/c he can't find time - it seems like words and actions are not in sync. I appreciate all of the kindness I find here so much! It's like another family since my family is taking his side. At least I have friends here and friends at home who have my back and are my greatest source of support.

Thanks Ladies and token guys!!

Engbunny said...

Another great movie with Colin in it is "Love Actually". Between he and Alan Rickman (not traditionally sexy but there is something about him...) it is great movie to watch. Mmmm...

As for drinks...yes, I believe I can partake. They cleared that road for me too...I'll take a bud light! Here is to you, ladies! May you enjoy your freedom and find your Adam at the same time!


Kristin said...

Hi there Ladies (and fellas),

Congrats got to Lori for her good health news!

Happy D-Anniversary for Karen! I've been through it twice, and though each was tough, I believe I am the better woman for it!

I just found out last night, that my first ex (my kid's dad) is heading back to Iraq for his third tour of duty! My daughter is heart broken! He engineered this assignment, and he is really good at what he does (security police), but he is a knucklehead when it comes to inability to understand what these tours are doing to our youngest! His single minded focus and determination to be a part of these situations (he was in Desert Storm too)without consideration to what the children are feeling is part of what led to our divorce! Sigh....

Here is a toast to all of us strong and wonderfully independent woman! Pass the bottle!

Oh! Watched Colin in a mother/daughter Bridget Jones Diary 1 & 2 this past weekend! We absolutely loved the fight scenes in both movies! They were hysterical!

Have a funderful day!!!

kmorales4 said...


Your drink is on me. The road ahead will probably be very rough, but us women have an advantage over men and it's emotional strenght and endurance.

I don't want to sound like I'm promoting divorce (I strongly believe in family, marriage, and all that jazz) but if it's not worth the fuss, the tears, the pain, let go. Don't try to hold on to things that God himself would pull you away from. Over all, be strong. Analize your situation until you're absolutely certain of your decision, whichever it may be.

Jo said...

Wow! Heavy comments here today. My ex was an abusive alcoholic. Oh and all the things that Adam is NOT! And vice versa. I think one of the reasons I like reading this blog is because I like that Adam is certainly not perfect (well, almost) but he's such a good man. It's nice to know they exist.

OK and speaking of reading this blog..... Adam! Oh Adam! Wherefor art thou!?!?!

Guess we'll just have to sit here and wait. Margaritas all around!!!

Thinking of going home and pulling out my Pride and Predujice DVD's.....

x5head3pay said...

He's a nice guy - a great guy actually. He's just a lot older and tends to treat me more like a child than a 35 year old would like to be treated. I am a lot more independent than he would admit that he likes and he is a lot more controlling than he will admit to either. My and I do mean my since he hasn't bothered to show up yet marriage counseling has helped me determine that YES, I would be better off without. Thanks for the drink, but it will have to be a Diet Dr. Pepper. I want to see this all with absolute clarity - caffinated clarity - but clarity all the same. You are all so amazing!!!

catrina said...

In Sarah and Adam's absence, we'll all have to make do! As for divorce and marriage, I'm a proponent of both (since I've been divorced, then happily married for 20 years). My motto: Don't ever regret one thing from your past, because every minute you suffered through got you where you are today! Here's to happy, healthy blog friends!

Jo said...

Catrina, AMEN!

My marriage was terrible but I've lived and learned. I appreciate the wonderful man I'm dating now. And, more importantly, I appreciate me and the time I spend with just me.

That which doesn't kill us makes us stronger. And, since I'm running out of cliche's, I'll shut up.

Can't wait to see what Adam and Sarah are up to tomorrow!

kmorales4 said...

I'll be renting Pride and Predujice
today. I will watch it while I eat my celebration pizza and sip my celebration beer.

kmorales4 said...

P.S. I'm sad to hear that there's so many of us that have been through a bad marriage/relationship however, as Jo said, what doesn't kill us makes us stronger. Cheeers to all survivors out there. Here's to a better future whether it's alone or with someone new.

Engbunny said...

We are all survivors in some form, aren't we? I have always believed that whatever you go through helps shape the person you become. Besides, if life was always fun, think how damn boring it would be. I may have issues in the health arena but I am extremely lucky in the love arena. I married my college sweetheart at age 20 and we are still going strong! I truly believe that there is someone out there for everyone. Then again, I am also a hopeless romantic. *LOL*

Becky said...

I hope HOPE is okay as we didn't hear from her...

I truly believe that all our experiences shape us and make us what we are. I think one purpose in life is to continue to learn and grow, and the challenges are part of the lesson. I have 4 close friends who have been ( or in one, case, is going) through divorce and it is very hard. They are alll stronger women because of it and because of the way they are choosing to live their lives. I, too, was one of the lucky one, engbunny. I married my college sweetheart and lived happily ever after until August 2005 when he died suddenly and unexpectedly. I was with him. What a shock! We weren't ale to have children, but that only made us closer because we felt we married to be with each other (would have loved them so much, though). I certainly didn't expect to become a widow at age 54. We had been retred from teaching for one year. He was a true romantic in that his giving was of himself: he never passed by me without kissing or hugging me, always told me how pretty I was or how nice I looked, always flirted with me, and adored me (and I him). I have fantastic memories, and I thank God we had 34 wonderful years together (31 of them married).


D said...

Hello All!
I'm new to this blog, but I read the ENTIRE story over the course of the past weekend! And I love it!! I'm currently in a long distance relationship, and my heart breaks every time Sarah and Adam are apart, because my relationship, like their's, was very whirlwind, and we fell in love very quickly, and well, it's an awful thing, being away from the man you love.
Hope! Thank you for writing this story! I was REALLY hoping by the time I got to this post, I'd hove some questions answered!! I suppose I'll just have to muster up some patience (that'll take some work!)

Engbunny said...

Becky, there are so many things I could say right now but none of them can tell you how your story touched me. Would you just accept a hug and let me tell you that I think you are an amazing woman? I'm so sorry for your loss. Sometimes I think it is a great risk to love someone that much...but then I realize that without him, I wouldn't be who I am and how empty I would feel. He is cut from the same cloth as your husband was. We have been married 23 years now and we still flirt like teenagers.

Hope, I hope everything is ok. I am sure you told everyone where you were and I just missed it but I wanted to check in. I'll try to check in when I get back from the hospital tomorrow but if I can't, I'll look in first thing Thursday morning.