Authors: Andee Michelle
Finding Our Forever
Copyright © 2016 by Andee Michelle
Publisher: AM Books, LLC
First Print Edition: September 2016
Editor: Virginia Cantrell, Hot Tree Editing
Cover Design: Mischievous Designs
Interior Formatting: Pink Ink Designs
Photography: Lindee Robinson
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the author, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law. For permission requests or comments, please write to: [email protected]
This book is a work of fiction. All names, individuals, places and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination and/or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance is entirely coincidental.
WATCHING MY PARENTS’
marriage fall apart had been horrible. I think I knew even in my early teens that they weren’t in love with each other. Everything about their relationship was mechanical. They never really showed affection toward one another in front of us, but they talked to each other like they were the best of friends. Most of the time. My mom, bless her old-fashioned soul, mothered him as she did us, and more times than not, it pissed him off. But he never said anything about it. He just went to work.
Work. The place where he basically had a table of young, athletic hotties laid out in front of him. I’d been there a time or twelve over the years, and I can tell you from seeing it firsthand, the ladies he worked with adored him. He was different around them—attentive, funny, flirty—not the same man he was when he stepped through the front door of our home.
When he announced they were separating, I’d had a feeling it was coming. Mom had been so sad around that time, and I knew something was off. Regardless, I wanted to rip his dick off when I found out a few weeks later that he was already seeing someone else. I’ll take it to my grave because my mom would be pissed if she knew, but I saw him leaving his office with his arm around a young woman, who I now know was his current girlfriend/baby mama. They looked pretty familiar with each other even back then.
I kept it to myself because, seriously, how do you tell your mom that your dad is a cheating bastard? You don’t. I mean, they were separated, but he had definitely been cheating. I was almost relieved when Dad finally told us they were getting a divorce, but that relief was gone the moment he told us he was marrying his sidepiece because he knocked her up—obviously my words, not his. My younger brother, Destry, had to hold me back. I wanted to punch Dad right in the mouth… and sometimes I still do. He doesn’t make the best decisions and he’s selfish as hell. It amazes me that I didn’t realize that until I was basically an adult.
My twin brother, Ben, had looked and acted shocked, which I found funny, and then after the shock wore off, even he was pissed. He’d always been my dad’s little sidekick, following him around like a lost puppy most of the time, and it used to make me so irritated. Watching my parents’ marriage fall apart really taught me a lot about myself and about what I want for my future. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out why my parents got married. We were born six months later, full-term babies. They were young, just out of high school, and struggled big time when we were little. I think when you marry and become parents young, one of two things happen: the struggle makes your relationship stronger and you “grow up” together, or it makes you resent each other and tears you apart. For those reasons, I
wrap it up when I’m with a girl.
Also, I’m no fool. I know the person I am today is not the person I will be in twenty years. Life changes people. Their priorities change. Their personalities change. Any thirty-five-year-old who says they are exactly the same person they were at twenty is a liar.
Anyways, I digress.
Our parents are divorced, which is a good thing since they both now seem somewhat happy. Dad and his baby mama put on happy faces when we are around, and their new baby, Amelia, is amazing. I don’t think I could love a little girl more. My mom is enjoying her new career as some type of chef in a local restaurant and is trying to make light of the fact that she is totally into her neighbor, who also happens to be her boss. I like Cord; he seems nice enough. When we found out that Mom was “friends” with
Saint Cordero, we were floored. I mean, he’s a UC legend. I don’t know that I’ll ever get used to seeing my mom hanging out with another guy though. It’s just weird.
Why am I telling you all this you ask? Well, you see, all of this is what leads up to the rest of my story. Our story. The shitstorms my father always creates and leaves in his wake is what led me to her. My Sara.
MY HEART IS BEATING
so fast that I feel lightheaded. I throw my truck into gear and push the pedal to the floor, making my engine scream in response.
“Eli, it’s your mom. She’s been hurt. Come to St. Mary’s Medical Center.”
That was the voice mail I received from my dad. He never leaves me messages, so the moment I heard the notification ding, I listened to it. I guess that’ll teach me to decline phone calls from him.
She has to be okay.
As soon as I put the truck in park, I’m running. The doors slide open and the chaos of the emergency room makes my heart race even more.
“Excuse me. My mom is here somewhere. Eleanor Harper,” I choke out.
The woman types into the computer quickly and then looks up at me with kind eyes.
“Yes, sir, she is currently in surgery. She has other family members in the waiting area,” she states sympathetically while pointing toward a long corridor. “They are down that hall and to the left.”
“Thank you,” I reply as I take off in that direction.
The moment I step into the waiting room, Ben grabs me and holds on for dear life. We stand motionless, clinging to each other for what feels like hours. I can’t let go of him. People who do not have a twin will never understand the bond that comes with that. Even as different as Ben and I are, he is my best friend, my person. Yeah, we drive each other crazy, but I seriously have no idea what I’d do without him.