Hot Coffee And Rainy Mondays

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is my contest entry for RAB Bradbury's June contest! The theme is "Sacrifice For Passion." Hope you like it. Comment your thoughts :D

Submitted: June 06, 2013

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Submitted: June 06, 2013

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~Hot Coffee And Rainy Mondays~

I sat in my usual spot by the back window in the Express Coffee Shop Monday morning as the rain fell lightly just outside. The smell of coffee filled my nose, and a soft rock song from the 70s flowed through the speakers in every corner. I sat back, smiling, and opened my laptop.

Almost done, I thought to myself as I stared at a blank Word document in front of me. Just one more paper to write of my high school career, and I was done. Finals were next week, and I knew I was ready for them. It was the paper I had to get past. English wasn’t my best subject. In fact, it was my worst, and this paper was a huge part of my grade.

“Morning, Cat.”

I looked up to see my favorite waitress, Delia, walking my way, the scent of coffee following her. I smiled. She always had my usual ready for me when I got there. I wondered sometimes if it meant I came by just entirely too much.

“Ugly day, huh?” Delia asked, sitting my coffee next to me.

I beamed, leaned back and stretched. “Oh no. This is just perfect for me.”

Delia threw her head back and laughed. “It would be wonderful for me, too, if I could be at home, cuddled up in bed with my babies.”

By babies, I knew Delia was referring to her four-year-old twins.

“I agree,” I told her. “I’d rather be home cuddled up, too, than on the way to school.”

Delia took a seat across from me. She didn’t need to be invited to sit. I loved talking to her.

“What are you working on there?” she asked.

I sighed. “English paper. Not a word written, yet, and it’s due this afternoon.”

Her eyes widened. “Procrastinating much?”

“I am,” I said. “You any good at writing?”

She shook her head regretfully. “Afraid not, dear. What’s the paper supposed to be about?”

“Anything. That’s what’s making it so hard. If Mr. Lyons had given me a prompt I probably would be on a roll right now. But I can’t think of a thing to write about.”

Delia sat back, and studied me, a thoughtfull expression on her face. “I think maybe I can help you. I can tell you a story about a friend of mine from high school. You can use it if you’d like.”

I nodded. “Anything to get my brain moving!”

Delia smiled, and then turned to look at the counter. Her coworker was leaning over, flipping through  a magazine. The place was dead this rainy morning. I didn’t think it would hurt for her to sit and talk a little while.

“When I was your age, I had a best friend,” Delia started. “Her name was Leah, and she wanted nothing more in the world than to dance.”

I smiled, imagining Delia’s friend. It was easy to comprehend her passion for dancing just by looking at the sparkle in Delia’s eyes as she started her story. The two girls must have been close.

“She was amazing,” Delia said. “She never thought she was any good, of course. She’d put herself through hell since she was five years old trying to be the best, trying to please her teachers, the judges, and especially her mother.”

I had a bad feeling when Delia mentioned the mother. “Was her mother hard on her?”

Delia smiled and nodded. “Yes, she was. But only because she knew if she didn’t push Leah, Leah wouldn’t push herself. And she saw her daughter’s potential, her passion. She wanted her to be happy.”

I smiled again. Delia was such an amazing storyteller.

She continued. “Leah knew she had a gift. She wanted to take her gift as far as she possibly could. She was going to dance on Broadway.”

“She was that good?” I asked.

Delia smiled. “Her friends thought so.”

“You thought so?”

“She was good enough,” Delia assured me.

I closed my laptop and leaned forward. “So did she make it to Broadway.”

“We’re still in high school, remember?” Delia said, winking. “You’re getting ahead of the story, Cat.”

“Sorry,” I said. “Go ahead.”

“Her dance teacher and her mother, they were both very strict, and she didn’t have a lot of time for friends and she never dated.”

“Never?” I asked.

“She wasn’t allowed. Boys would take the attention off dance.”

I was flabbergasted. No dating? No boys? There was no way I could be in dance.

“But then she met a boy,” Delia said.

I gasped. I wasn’t sure why, it just seemed like such a twist in the story. “Did they fall in love.”

Delia ignored my question and continued with the story. “His name was Daniel. He had just moved to town from New York and he was something so perplexing to her. He wore this leather jacket, and he drove a motorcycle.”

I smiled. “Was he cute?”

Delia laughed. “He was very cute. Sort of bad boy meets country hottie with a Brooklyn accent.”

I felt a shiver go down my spine just thinking about him.

“Rules or no rules I bet Leah just couldn’t resist him,” I said.

Delia shook her head. “No, she couldn’t. Daniel was quiet, and he was mysterious. Leah found him intriguing. And he liked her, too, which she found even more intriguing. No guy had ever looked at her before, so she was excited.”

I smiled. I remembered my first boyfriend. The first guy I liked who liked me back. I was twelve at the time, so I guess if Leah had been seventeen and waited so long for that feeling, it must have been even more special for her.

“Did he ask her out?” I asked.

Delia nodded. “He did. And naturally, she said yes. She snuck around, and she was happy.”

“So she never told her mom?” I asked. Delia shook her head. “Did her mom find out?”

Delia nodded then. “She did. Leah used to keep this journal. She wrote everything in it, and she kept it under her pillow.”

“Uh-oh,” I said, already knowing where the story was going.

Delia nodded. “Yeah. She started losing focus at dance, and when she skipped a couple of rehearsals, her mother flipped. She found the journal, read through it and found out that Leah had been seeing Daniel.”

I panicked. “Oh gosh, did she make them break up?”

“She tried. Leah was eighteen, and what neither she nor her mother knew at the time was that she was already pregnant with Daniel’s child.”

I felt my mouth fall open. “Pregnant?”

Delia nodded. “Yep. When Leah found out, she went to her mother, looking for help. She didn’t want to tell Daniel, because she and Daniel hadn’t been together that long and she wasn’t sure how he’d react.”

I couldn’t imagine what Leah’s mother had to say about her star dancer being pregnant. I was on the edge of my seat.

“She told her she wanted Leah to come home. She would have an abortion and get herself back into dance class. Broadway was still in the cards.”

An abortion? I couldn’t believe a mother would suggest that. Young or not.

“What did Leah do?” I asked eagerly. “Please tell me she kept her baby!”

Delia nodded. “She kept them.”

“Them?” I asked.

“She had twins.”

I grinned. “Like you.”

Delia smiled again. “Yes. Like me. But her decision cost her. A lot. She originally agreed to go to the appointment. To appease her mother and get the abortion.”

“She decided against it at the last minute,” I said, certain of myself.

Delia shook her head. “She never planned to get it. She had told Daniel about the pregnancy, and told him she wanted her baby. Daniel agreed. She packed her things the night before, threw them in the trunk of her car, and drove right passed the clinic the next day.”

“Where did she go?”

“To Daniel’s. He promised her he would take care of her. And he did. Leah had two little girls, and she never danced again.”

I felt sad that Delia’s friend lost her favorite thing in the world, but what she gained was probably ten times better.

“Do you see her still?” I asked.

“Now and then,” Delia said. “She’s doing alright for herself, I think. She’s happy and that’s all that matters.”

“So Daniel took care of them?”

“Daniel did,” Delia said with a grin. “He really, really did.”

I looked at my laptop, thinking about what I wanted to write about now. Giving up something you love for someone you love. For passion, and true love. I was sure I’d found my theme, and I had Delia to thank.

I smiled. “I think my writer’s block is fixed now,” I said. “Thanks a lot, Delia.”

She grinned and touched my shoulder as she stood up. “Anytime. Good luck on your paper.”

She started to walk away. “Oh, wait! Delia.” She turned to face me. “What happened with Leah and her mom?”

“They didn’t speak for a while,” Delia said. “But then finally, Leah decided her mother needed to meet her granddaughters. They’re still patching things up.”

I smiled. “That’s good.”

Delia nodded. “It is. It’s very good.”

The bell dinged over the door. A few customers started coming in, and I knew Delia had to get back to work.

I finished my coffee, and started to slide my laptop into its case. I heard the bell ding again, then looked up to see a guy in maybe his early twenties come in. He caught my eye because he wore a leather jacket, fitted jeans, and cowboy boots. And he was gorgeous. In his arm, he held one curly-haired toddler girl, while another held his hand. They went straight to the counter, and immediately Delia started beaming.

“Hi, guys!” she said happily.

“Mommy!” the little girl walking said, reaching up. Delia came around the counter and scooped her into her arms.

“Oh, my darlings!” she said, kissing one plump cheek, then the other. “What are you girls doing up so early?”

I saw her kiss the good-looking man in leather on the lips.

“We were going for breakfast and they wanted to see you,” the man said.

Delia looked at me as I went toward the door.

“Cat, I’d like you to meet my husband,” Delia said. “This is Leo, and these are my little girls, Evan and Eden.”

I smiled. “Hello.”

“Nice to meet ya, Cat,” Leo replied in a thick Brooklyn accent.

Brooklyn accent.

Leah and Daniel.

“She’s my favorite customer,” Delia explained with a smile.

Evan and Eden were twins. Four years old. Delia was about twenty-one or twenty-two. She would have been in high school when she got pregnant with them.

Realization hit me as I watched the little family. There was no Leah, and there was no Daniel. There was a Leo, and there was a Delia. Delia had just spent all this time telling me her very own love story, what she herself had sacrificed to get what she had now. And she really did look happy.

“It was nice meeting you, Leo,” I said. “I hate to rush off, but I have to get to class.”

He nodded, then waved.

“See you in the morning, Cat?” Delia asked as I pushed the door open.

I turned my head, and smiled back. “Absolutely.”

I pulled the hood of my jacket over my head, and stepped out into the rain, knowing exactly what I was going to write my very last high school paper about;

Leo and Delia. After all. That was the only true love story I thought I’d ever heard.

And it had been beautiful.


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