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Perfect Love Story (Love 1) Natasha Madison 2022/8/3 13:48:45

I shake my head as I get into my car and make my way back home, popping the trunk open and carrying the pizza inside. I walk in, taking in the room, and smile to myself.

The loveseats are perfect, the added throw pillows completing the look. A cream-colored quilt hangs over the back of the loveseat. The wooden box side tables hold two lamps I didn’t buy, and there is a white coffee table in the middle with a wooden tray in the center containing the remotes and several candles.

A picture-perfect room with the now working fireplace and a television hanging just above it.

I walk to the antique white dining room table, which I knew would be perfect, and place the pizza on it. Heidi comes into the room from my bedroom. “I might never leave,” I tell her, and she throws her head back and laughs.

“Food,” Brody yells from behind me, and everyone gathers in the living room from wherever they were in the house. I look around and see Gabe and Crystal missing. “Where are the other two?” I ask as I grab a piece of pizza, folding it and taking a bite, the sweetness of the sauce hitting my tongue first. “This is so good.”

“The other two are upstairs having a standoff,” Delores says as she grabs a piece of pizza. “Apparently, there is a correct way to have the bed against the wall. One said straight, and the other wants it at an angle.”

“Um,” I say as Gabe comes storming downstairs. Walking straight out of the house, the screen door slamming behind him, he gets in Darla’s car and leaves. We all watch as Crystal comes down the stairs wearing a smile.

She doesn’t say anything. Instead, she grabs a piece of pizza, groaning, “This is the best thing I’ve ever eaten.”

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“What did you do to Gabe?” Darla asks from her husband’s lap.

“I didn’t say anything,” she says, “He was ranting and raving and apparently me not saying anything pushed him over the edge. He fired me. I laughed at him.” She laughs as she takes another bite of her pizza. “Then I took the phone out and called his father and quit.” She shrugs her shoulders.

“You quit?” I shriek out while the other people in the room just laugh.

“Well, I tried, but Nathan, Gabe’s father, didn’t accept it and called his son.” She shrugs. “I have no idea what was said. I mean, I saw the vein in his forehead start throbbing. Then I asked him if he needed medical attention because he looked pale.”

Brody throws his head back and lets out a big belly laugh while Delores looks down and snickers. “Then he stormed out of here.”

“This is going to be fun,” Brody says, and Darla cuddles in his arms, laying her head on his shoulder. “Okay,” he says, kissing Darla’s head, “we are almost done. Let’s get the last things out.” Darla gets off his lap so he can head out to the truck with the other two guys and finish unloading.

Heidi cleans up as I walk to the back where my bedroom is, stopping at the entrance. “This isn’t what I ordered,” I tell Darla as I walk inside, my feet landing on a huge shaggy brown rug in the middle of the room. The king-size bed sits in the middle of the room between two windows. A wooden off-white bedframe holds the mattress, and the champagne-colored duvet covering it looks like a plush cotton ball. The side tables bring a bit of style with mirrored glass tops. A small plant decorates one of the side tables, and a big clock hangs on the wall next to one of the windows. A cream-covered bench sits at the foot of the bed with a plush cover. “It’s a dream.”

“I’m happy to hear you say that.” I hear Delores say from behind me as she leans on the doorframe. “You need somewhere that is your sanctuary, and I want this to be it,” she says as I wrap my arms around my waist, the tears coming now.

“It’s not what you went through; it’s what you do after it that defines you,” she says, and I nod my head. “The boys just finished bringing in the last of it. We are going to let you two get settled.”

“Thank you,” I say to her as she looks at me. “Thank you for making me finally feel at home; it’s been a while.” She turns and walks away. I make it outside to the glass-enclosed porch, sitting in the wooden swing that someone sanded down, repainted, and added new cushions to, and look out the window. Seeing Mila run after the dog who turns and runs back to her, I watch her father walk with his head down, lost in his own thoughts.