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Fairytale Love - Becca & Brian

By:Melanie Shawn

Fairytale Love - Becca & Brian
Melanie Shawn

       Chapter One





"He's not my boyfriend," Becca explained to the elderly woman seated  beside her on the crowded airplane-for the third time. Then, softening  her tone, she smiled as she added the obligatory, "We're just friends."

When Becca had boarded the plane, the woman had asked if she wouldn't  mind switching seats. She explained that she had a fear of sitting by  the window and wanted to know if Becca would give up her middle seat.  Becca had a fear of flying, period. It didn't matter if she was in the  middle, window, or aisle seat, so she agreed to switch. But not before  she'd heard Patrick Swayze's voice from Dirty Dancing in her head say,  "Nobody puts baby in the corner."

'80s movies and television were her all-time favorites, and whenever she  was stressed or overwhelmed, lines from the shows or movies would pop  in her head. She used to think she was weird because, seriously, who  does that? But over the years, she'd learned to accept it and even think  of it as a coping mechanism; her psyche's way of trying to ease her  stress.

"Oh well, you two sure do make a lovely couple, dear." Nodding her head  up and down, the woman smiled sweetly as she reached out and lightly  patted Becca's hand, which was resting on the laptop that sat on her  lap.

Becca wasn't sure if the woman had heard her, ignored her, or if she  just hadn't understood what she'd said. A fleeting thought buzzed  through her head that she should attempt to clarify her platonic  relationship once more, but Becca quickly decided that would be as  pointless as asking Stevie Wonder how many fingers she was holding up.

Not to mention, hearing herself say the phrase she'd been spouting since  she had been in middle school-"We're just friends"-didn't seem to ring  as true to her as it once had, and Becca wasn't really comfortable with  lying, even if it was to a stranger on a plane.

So, instead of addressing the fact that the woman had the wrong idea,  Becca turned her attention downward to her laptop screen, which  displayed the large family photo that featured her three sisters and  their men and her five cousins and their wives. The picture that she  still wasn't sure why she'd made her screensaver. The picture that had  prompted the woman next to her to ask the question Becca had been asked  by more people than she could count since puberty, "Is that your  boyfriend?" The picture that had been taken at her sister Haley's  wedding six months ago. The picture that captured the night that had  drastically (hopefully not irrevocably) changed the way she  thought-slash-felt about her best friend in the whole world, Brian  Scott.

Every time she looked at the picture, she got a funny feeling deep in  her belly. Her eyes always shot directly to Brian's large hands, which  were resting against the sides of her waist. His tan skin stood out  against the rich blue hue of her dress. If she just closed her eyes, she  could still feel his fingers brushing over her hips.

No, she quickly reprimanded herself. Stop. It.

Popping her eyes open, she turned to look out the small window to her  right. As she watched the clouds roll by, Becca tried to remember what  it was like to think of Brian as just a friend. Her mind drew a blank.  The switch to her hormones had been flipped to the turned-on position,  and no matter how hard she tried, she simply wasn't able to get that  sucker back down to turned-off. It was stuck.

"So how long have you two been together?" Becca heard the woman's voice beside her say.

"We've been friends since pre-kindergarten, but we aren't together. He  was just my date to my sister's wedding." Becca hoped that would satisfy  the woman's curiosity, but she doubted it.

"Wow. Since pre-kindergarten?" the woman smiled sweetly, her wrinkled  cheeks pushing the corners of her eyes shut. She shook her head and the  helmet of white curls, that didn't have one hair out of place, moved  with her. "That is so wonderful. So, when did you know he was the one?  I'm Stella, by the way."

Disappointment niggled deep inside of Becca as she resigned herself to  the fact that this was not going to be a  throw-your-earphones-on-and-chillax flight, which was exactly what she  had been counting on.

She was exhausted. Her finals had kicked her in the rear, chewed her up,  and spit her out. Luckily, she'd performed better than she'd  anticipated and maintained her three-point-eight GPA, but it was by the  skin of her teeth that she'd pulled it off.

School had always centered her. Whenever anything in life seemed  overwhelming or out of control, Becca had always had her studies. She  would throw herself into them and come out ahead. It gave her  quantifiable results. If she applied herself, she succeeded. There was  security in that. Yes, it was hard work, but like her dad always said  whenever she called to check in and he could hear stress in her voice,  "If it weren't hard, any moron could be a doctor." ‘Moron' was her dad's  go-to insult of choice.                       
       
           



       

Being a pediatrician had always been Becca's dream. When she was eight,  she'd come down with a rare strain of strep throat that had sent her to  the pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) with a hundred-and-five-degree  fever. The experience had been somewhat of a blur. She'd slept through a  lot of it, thankfully. But what had stuck out in her mind was her  doctor, Dr. Corbin.

Now, Dr. Corbin was the chief of surgery at Harper's Crossing Community  Hospital, but at the time, he'd been the head of pediatrics. Becca  remembered how amazing he'd been with not only her, her parents, and  sisters, but also the other families and kids.

The girl in the bed next to her had been diagnosed with leukemia, and  Becca had woken up in the middle of Dr. Corbin explaining the diagnosis  and treatment options to the girl and her visibly upset parents. Even at  eight years old, Becca had been aware that, while he hadn't given the  family any false hope, he'd been reassuring. By just the strength of his  presence and his confident words, he'd calmed them by exuding an air of  unflappable competency.

After she'd witnessed that display, Dr. Corbin had become like a  superhero in Becca's eyes. That day, lying in that hospital bed, she'd  decided that that was what she wanted to be when she grew up. She wanted  to help people in their time of need.

Up until this last summer, Becca had had no problems whatsoever staying  focused on her goal. She'd been like an academic machine. A pre-med  piranha. A studying stallion.

That was until her dreams (day and night!) had started featuring an  unwanted co-star, Brian, and had also had the fun, added bonus of  turning X-rated in nature.

"And what's your name, dear?" Stella asked, lifting her penciled-in brows.

"Sorry. I was just …  Never mind." Forcing herself to be friendly and not  take out her personal frustrations on this woman who'd been nothing but  sweet to her, Becca smiled and offered her hand in greeting. "I'm Becca  Sloan. Nice to-"

"Jumping jelly beans! Is that Chase Malone?!" Stella interrupted with a  shriek as she pointed at Becca's screen to the spot where the rock star  was standing behind her sister Krista.

"Yes," Becca confirmed. At this point, she was getting used to that reaction. "It is. He is my sister Krista's fiancé."

Chase was a musician who had been in a wildly successful band, Midnight  Rush, but was now promoting a solo project, causing his popularity to  skyrocket even further into the stratosphere. Chase and Krista had been  childhood sweethearts who hadn't seen one another in years but had  reunited last summer when Abby, Chase's mom, had been hospitalized.

Their wedding was in five weeks. Becca was a bridesmaid, and Brian had,  once again, agreed to be her date since neither of them was seeing  anyone. They'd had that arrangement since their freshman year, when  they'd gone to the Spring Fling and Morp High School dances. Any time an  event would come up in either of their lives, if they both happened to  be unattached, then they would go as the other's default plus-one. It  had worked out splendidly … until Haley and Eddie's wedding.

Where everything had changed.

That change is what had made it almost impossible for Becca to  concentrate on her studies for the past six months. Between last summer  and her sister's Christmas Eve wedding, Becca's dreams and thoughts had  been progressively getting worse-or better-depending on how you looked  at it.

After the wedding, Becca's mind had been so consumed with Brian, the  dreams and thoughts had gotten so frequent and graphic, that it had  started affecting Becca's life. She was having a hard time concentrating  on scholastics. The few, precious hours that she did have to sleep were  spent tossing and turning in restless fits, her mind filled with images  of Brian, dreams of Brian, fantasies of Brian. All very, very naughty  in nature.

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