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teresaplatt

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Reply with quote  #51 
Thank you 9K,your stories give me someplace to run, when i need a pick-me-up, from all  the  outside crap,  these stories should be the ones we see on our tv, and i really think that AMC would be right up there with  Y&R. JMO
Granny

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Reply with quote  #52 

Quote:
Originally Posted by teresaplatt
Thank you 9K,your stories give me someplace to run, when i need a pick-me-up, from all  the  outside crap,  these stories should be the ones we see on our tv, and i really think that AMC would be right up there with  Y&R. JMO

I've thought this for decades!  Why do the soaps have to be so damn depressing?  This is why I stopped watching them for a while.  I had enough depression in my own life to deal with.  Sometimes we want to have an escape from the real world.  Why can't TPTB be more romantic?  Granny 


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ninekaronas

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Reply with quote  #53 
You are so right, Granny. Why can't we get more romance and less agony? I sometimes wonder why I put myself through it, then Zach shows up on the screen and I remember. I'd follow TK to the moon. He owns me.


Home Sweet Home

Kendall sat back and let the sun warm her skin. There was plenty of work to do inside, but the last rays of summer lulled her to the Fusion rooftop. What a crazy summer it had turned out to be. She went into May with so many problems, not the least of which was a baby she had but didn't want and a husband she wanted but didn't have. But Zach changed everything. He helped her to realize how much she did want the baby and that she could still have the husband. Then he gave her both. Follow that with comas, emergency c-sections, aborted brothers and murder charges. And now, to add insult to injury, a fake affair with the last woman Kendall wanted Zach to spend time with, Dixie Martin.

She took a deep breath and propped her feet up on the rail. They would get through it, she knew that. Zach promised her forever, and she was damn well gonna hold him to it. He owed her that much. And she owed him the world. She leaned her head back and closed her eyes, just enjoying the warm sun and the gentle breeze. Not to mention the peace and quiet. That was the only benefit to having Babe and Erin around all the time, they kept Simone busy. It was hard enough having strangers poking around in her love life. She didn't need her friends trying to solve all her problems.

Just as Kendall decided to suck it up and head back into work, her phone rang. It was Ryan and she didn't really want to deal with him, so she ignored it. But she did check her messages, just in case it was important. There was a text message from Zach. Her first reaction was a big smile, but then she read it. It was short, but not so sweet: Busted. I'm okay. Don't worry.

-------------------------

Kendall stood outside the door of the only person who could help her ... the only person in Pine Valley who would understand. She knocked, but didn't wait for an answer. She rushed inside to find her savior just rising from a chair in the living room. "Kendall, darlin'. What are you doing here?" Myrtle said as she sat back down. "Come on over here and tell me what's the matter. I can see on your face that something's not right." Kendall hurried to sit in the chair across from her. "Myrtle, you have to help me. Zach's in trouble and I can't go to him."

Myrtle made a few phone calls while Kendall paced. She had explained the situation to Myrtle, who wasn't the least bit surprised. "I knew you two were meant for each other. The greatest love story that I ever heard of. That's what I told Zach," she had said. Now she was talking to Livia, trying to get the facts. She finished her call and turned to Kendall. "Okay, darlin', here's what I know. Zach was hauled in for breaking the terms of his bail. Apparently," she said with a knowing look, "he went out of town with permission and then ditched his police escort. He was missing for days. You wouldn't know anything about that now would you?"

Kendall looked horrified and guilty. Myrtle just patted her hand and continued. "Now then, don't look so worried. Zach is a big boy. I'm sure he knew just what he was doing. And I'm sure he doesn't regret it." Kendall couldn't stop the tears that filled her eyes and threatened to run down her face. But Myrtle wouldn't stand for it. "None of that, girl. Tears won't do your husband any good now." She sat back and tapped her finger on the arm of her chair. "I've got it," she said suddenly, leaning forward to take Kendall's hand. "I know just what Zach needs, and I intend to see he gets it."

-------------------------

Zach sat in the same cell he'd frequented too many times since coming to Pine Valley. At least this time he was alone. No Tad Martin. No Dixie. Just a man and his thoughts, which in Zach's case, was not necessarily a good thing. Sometimes his thoughts were his worst enemies. He'd known it was risky to leave Vegas and go to Kendall, but it had been worth it. He wouldn't change a thing ... except maybe the ending. He hadn't planned on being stuck here, again.

The worst part was that now he could have no contact with Kendall. No more stolen moments. No more phone calls or text messages. No more "business" meetings that couldn't wait. All of Pine Valley thought they were on the road to divorce. No reason for her to visit him in jail.

Zach looked down at his left hand, where his wedding band should have been. No matter how ugly their public arguments had been, they both refused to take off their rings. It had become the unspoken rule, a line they simply would not cross. And now his was gone. He could still feel it on his finger, but he couldn't see it, touch it, hold onto it in the darkest hours. He hated not having it.

He was lying on the thin mattress, trying to come to terms with his own guilt by picturing Kendall's smiling face the last time he'd seen her. It didn't help. He wanted - no, needed - to see her. "You've really done it this time, Slater," he said to himself. "Kendall's out there alone and you're in here talking to yourself." Just as he started to drift off to sleep, he heard keys jangling. He looked up to see a guard coming up to his cell, looking over his shoulder as he approached. "Slater," he whispered. "You've got a visitor. But if anybody asks, I was never here." With that the guard stepped aside and revealed the woman standing behind him. Kendall.

Zach jumped up and ran to where she stood, just on the other side of the bars. He reached out to touch her, but hesitated when he remembered the guard. He looked at Kendall, and then the guard, questioning her without words. "It's okay, Zach. He knows." Kendall smiled, telling Zach that he could trust her. Zach looked at the guard for a minute and then stuck out his hand. "Thanks," he said simply. "No problem. I'd do anything for Mrs. Fargate. But I won't lie, so be sure I don't see anything that I'd have to report. Otherwise, it was a quiet night with no visitors." Then he turned and walked away, leaving Kendall and Zach alone.

"Kendall, you're here." Zach did touch her then, stroking her face and pulling her to him for a kiss. She buried her hand in his hair and held him there, not ready for the kiss to end. He could taste her tears. Zach pulled back while he still could and pressed his forehead against hers. "Let's don't start something we can't finish," he said as he waited for his heartbeat to return to normal. "Well, it is the middle of the night, Zach. We do appear to be all alone ... and I'm pretty flexible," she teased. He shook his head at her and laughed softly.

"Sit down, wench, and tell me how you managed this," he said. He took a pillow off the bed and shoved it through the bars. "Simple," Kendall answered casually as she settled herself on the pillow on the floor just outside his cell. "I just went to the one person I know besides you who can make anything happen." "Myrtle," they said in unison. "Yep," Kendall continued. "She called Livia and found out why you were arrested and when you could expect to be released. Then she called 'Officer Friendly' there and sweet-talked him into sneaking me in." "Simple, right," Zach said. "So when can I expect to be released?" he asked. "Never. At least that's what Derek says. But Livia is trying to get a judge to hear your case. We'll just have to wait and see."

Zach looked at Kendall and saw the concern in her eyes. She was trying to put on a brave face, but he could see past it. "Kendall," he said as he reached out and took her hand. "It's gonna be okay. It will all work out. And we will be together again soon - you, me and Spike." "I know," she replied. "I believe that with all my heart, Zach."

Kendall noticed as she ran her fingers over Zach's hand that his wedding band was gone. She absentmindedly traced the spot where it used to be. When she looked up, she caught Zach watching her. "I know," he said. "I hate it too." She smiled weakly and brought his hand to her lips, kissing the space his ring used to occupy. Zach closed his eyes. He opened them again when he felt Kendall press something into his hand. He looked down to see her wedding band in his palm. He met her eyes and felt his own fill with tears as he kissed first the ring and then the place on her hand where it used to be. Then he took her ring and placed it on his hand. It barely fit on his little finger, but it was perfect. "Don't let Derek see it," Kendall said. "I don't want him to take it from you." "I hope he tries," Zach repled with a look that said he meant it.

"Oh wait," Kendall said after a few minutes of companionable silence. "I have something else for you." She reached into her purse and pulled out a picture of her holding Spike. It was the same one he kept hidden in his office, but in a smaller size. "That's just to remind you what you're fighting for. Spike and I will be here, waiting for you, when all this is over. No matter what," she said. "Don't forget that." He ran his finger lightly over the picture and kissed it. Then he put it in his shirt pocket and leaned over to give Kendall a soft kiss. "I won't."

-------------------------

The Slaters lost track of time. Neither of them knew how long they sat there on the floor, holding hands through the bars and talking. They talked about anything and everything. Fusion, the casinos, the upcoming trial, Spike, of course, and even Erica. The circumstances didn't seem to matter, as long as they were together. Their conversation was suddenly interrupted by the guard, who walked quickly up to the cell. "Slater," he said quietly. "There someone here to see you. I told her visiting hours were over a long time ago, but she says it's urgent." "Who is it?" Zach asked, as if he didn't know. "Says her name is Dixie Martin." Kendall gasped, then became outraged. Before she could put words to her fury, she felt Zach squeeze her hand. "So you want me to bring her back?" the guard asked. "Hell no," Zach answered vehemently. "Okay, I'll tell her she'll have to come back later," the guard assured them as he walked away. "Or not," Kendall muttered under her breath.

Zach could feel the tension in Kendall. He hated Dixie for putting the worry back on her face. "Kendall," he said softly. "You want to talk about it?" "What's there to say, Zach? You know how I feel about her. You know how she feels about you. I don't want her around you. Ever. Is that so hard to understand?" He waited for her to look at him before responding. "No, it's not. I've been stubborn and blind, and I'm sorry. It took seeing you with Lavery to make me understand how you felt. I promise to end my relationship with Dixie when all of this is behind us. Okay?" he asked. He could see relief wash over her, but also something else. Confusion.

"I appreciate that, Zach. I really do. But I don't understand what Ryan has to do with this. He's Spike's father. That's why he's a part of our lives. I can't just ignore that fact and tell him to get lost, can I?" she asked. Zach looked like he was considering it, but then relented with a slight smile. "I guess not. But let's be honest here, Kendall. Let's get all our cards out on the table. Ryan is more than just Spike's father. He has insinuated himself into our lives at every turn. And let's not forget, he has told us both repeatedly that he's in love with you. He is constantly in our home, in our business, in our face and in our marriage."

He held up his hand when she opened her mouth to interrupt. "Please, let me finish," he said gently. "Now I have put up with far more from Ryan Lavery than I have asked you to accept from Dixie, current housing notwithstanding," he said dryly. "Dixie doesn't live across the courtyard. Dixie doesn't go through our closets when we're not there. And I would never allow that. But you allow Ryan. Does that seem fair?" He was stroking her hand as he talked, hoping to soften his remarks. But it was important to get it all said.

She looked at him for a long time, blankly and unseeing. He knew she was considering this in a way she never had before. He waited for her to see the truth, hoping she would be willing to accept it when she did. "Zach," she said finally. "I had no idea you felt this way. I have been so naive about all this. Ryan is in the middle of our lives, and I put him there. When I think about how I'd feel if you'd let Dixie buy your condo, it makes me sick. I would have been so furious, but I just expected you to accept Ryan with a smile. What was I thinking?" she asked as her voice broke.

"I've been telling you to end your friendship with Dixie because she wants you for herself, but I haven't ended mine with Ryan for the same reason. Instead, I've given him free reign in our lives." She looked up at him and he could see the pain in her eyes. But also the awakening. He smiled warmly at her and dried her tears. "It's okay, sweetheart. I guess it's taken this to open both of our eyes. But now that we see it, we can fix it. Together." He leaned forward to kiss her and she met him halfway.

As if on cue, Kendall's phone rang again. She glanced up at Zach when she saw who it was. "Speak of the devil," she said. "He's been calling all day. Let me just answer it so he'll leave me alone." She waited for Zach to nod before answering. "Hello," she said in a quiet, sleepy voice. Zach smiled at her theatrics, causing her to giggle. She waved him off and continued. "Yes, Ryan. I know all about Zach's being arrested. No, I don't need you to take care of anything. Zach and I can take care of it ourselves," she said as she rolled her eyes. "Where am I? What kind of question is that? None of your damn business, that's where I am!" she said in a louder voice. "Spike's fine, Ryan. I'll talk to you later on today, when it's not such an ungodly hour. Goodnight, Ryan. Goodnight..." she said, hanging up on a still-talking Ryan.

"What did I tell you?" Zach laughed, gesturing to the phone Kendall still held in her hand. "The guy's a real pest." She turned off the phone and dropped it back in her purse. "Well, maybe it's time we called an exterminator. No more pests in the Slater household." They both laughed and agreed not to waste another second talking about Ryan Lavery or Dixie Martin.

Just before dawn, the guard reappeared and told Kendall that she had to go. The shift was changing and Chief Frye was known to come in early. "I love you, Kendall. I'll see you soon," Zach said as he put his hand behind her neck and pulled her close. "I love you, Zach," she said into his mouth. They shared another passionate kiss before Kendall was forced to walk away.

-------------------------

Zach was tired and hungry, but it was so good to be out of that cell. Kendall had talked Jack into pulling some strings to get him another appointment with a judge, and Livia had worked her magic. He was once again out on bail, but with some very strict guidelines. He swore he'd play by the rules this time, and he meant it. He only wished he could see Kendall. But he couldn't go home. Not yet. And she couldn't be seen at the jail. So he drove himself to the casino and headed for his suite. At least he could sleep in a comfortable bed, even if it wasn't his first choice.

He dropped the keycard in the slot and opened the door. Be it ever so humble ... he thought to himself. Just as the door closed behind him he saw movement out of the corner of his eye. He turned to see everything he'd ever wanted waiting for him. There, standing in the middle of the room, was Kendall. She was holding Spike in her arms, a small suitcase at her feet. "Welcome home!" she cried.

Zach crossed the room quickly and took Spike from her. He held him close, rubbing his face against the boy's soft skin. After a brief man-to-man conversation, he kissed his son softly on the forehead and laid him in his bassinet. Then he turned his attention to his beautiful wife, the woman who never stopped surprising him. "It wasn't home when I got here, but it is now," He said as he pulled Kendall into his arms and kissed her with all the love in his heart. "I believe this belongs to you," he said as he took her ring from his finger and placed it back on her hand. Now they were both back where they belonged.

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Granny

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Reply with quote  #54 

Oh, 9K, you are amazing!  I know it is too late for TPTB and / or writers to turn the s/l into this direction.  But wouldn't this be absolutely wonderful to have this s/l!

 

Thank you, thank you, thank you.  You put smiles on all our faces and a glow in our hearts!  You are the best! 

 

Granny


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Puppetwrangler

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Reply with quote  #55 

Oh, 9K, thank you sooo much!!!! I needed that today.

Lorene

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Reply with quote  #56 

   9K you are so cool -you really GET IT !!!! Thanks for the latest story!


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Aukalina

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Reply with quote  #57 
Well I hate to be non creative but the other ladies said it best. So Cool!!!!!!!

This story was extrememly needed right now. Thank you.


Kathleen
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Reply with quote  #58 

Oh 9K -- This was perfect.  I wish that jail scene could really take place.  Where Zach gets to vent his frustration of Ryan and Kendall actually listening and understanding.  God how I hate these writers!!

tkaddicted

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Reply with quote  #59 

9K, I'm sitting here with tears streaming down my cheeks.  This is such a beautiful episode.  I only wish you'd been available when the past two months of junk was being written, we might actually have a story instead of a bunch of garbage.  Thanks for bringing us the Zendall we want.


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Roseann

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Reply with quote  #60 

9K, thank you again..and again, for making what is a dismal week into something to look forward to.  Just love your "mini's".  You have me crying one minute and smiling the next.  You really should be writing for AMC.

Roseann

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Reply with quote  #61 

Thank you 9K for another beautiful episode of a romantic Zach and Kendall.  I agree with Granny when she says why can't they give us a little romance (or alot would be fine too) in the afternoon. I really look forward to every episode you write.  I would love to see these scenes take place between them on screen.

zendall44

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Reply with quote  #62 

9K, you are just amazing!  Thank you, thank you, for these wonderful short stories.  Each one just gets better and better.


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Reply with quote  #63 
Quote:
Originally Posted by zendall44

9K, you are just amazing!  Thank you, thank you, for these wonderful short stories.  Each one just gets better and better.

Amen!  Granny

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ninekaronas

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Reply with quote  #64 
Moving Day

"You've got twenty minutes to get your stuff out of my house before I set fire to it!" So began Zach's afternoon. He didn't normally work on Saturdays anymore. Not since he'd gotten married. But he couldn't go home yet, and working helped him fill his days. The office at the casino was usually quieter on the weekends, even though activity on the floor was more hectic. But today was different. Kendall was worked about something. She didn't even give him a chance to speak, just blurted out her threat and hung up in his ear. With a slight smile on his face he exited his office. Maybe today wouldn't be so quiet after all.

-------------------------

Kendall was hauling Zach's belongings out of the condo and tossing them into the courtyard, muttering under her breath. She had just made the third drop when Ryan arrived. "Kendall? What's going on?" he asked. "What did Zach do?" She threw the shoe she was holding at his head. "What difference does it make, Ryan? And what business is it of yours?" she said as she went inside for another load. He walked in behind her, but ended up hurrying out the door when he spotted her coming toward him, hockey stick in hand. She was ranting and cursing, but he couldn't make any sense out of it.

"Really, Kendall. Come on. Calm down and talk to me," he said. "Why?" she shrieked. "Can you make Zach less of a man? Can you make him stop doing it? Well, can you?" she snapped when he didn't answer. He suddenly realized she had stopped her raving and was glaring at him. He searched his mind for answer, but nothing came. "Well, probably not. But what is it I'm supposed to make him stop doing?" he stammered. She erupted. "See. Men! I knew you would say that!" She hurried back into the bedroom for another armload.

Ryan waited in the courtyard for her to return. When she dropped the load she carried on the ever-growing pile, he grabbed her arms and held her still. "Kendall!" he said loudly. "Snap out of it. Don't make me slap you." "I'd like to see you try," she spat, jerking her arms away. Just as she started to walk back inside, he grabbed her around the waist and pulled her to him. "Wait a minute," he pleaded. "Get your hands off my wife, Lavery!"

Ryan and Kendall both turned to see Zach standing behind them. And he didn't look too happy. "I'm just trying to figure out what's got Kendall so upset, Zach," Ryan said, still holding Kendall. Zach just stared at him, his eyes traveling to where Ryan's hands rested on Kendall's waist. Then he met Ryan's eyes with a look of dangerous fury. Ryan immediately let go of Kendall, who ran back inside for more stuff.

She came back out to find Ryan and Zach glaring at each other. She made a big show of throwing one of Zach's favorite shirts, a hockey jersey of course, on the pile. Zach gave her a surprised look and reached down to retrieve it while Ryan grabbed Kendall's arm. "Tell me, Kendall. What did he do? Let me help you," he said, with a cautious glance at Zach, who just stood there, hands in his pockets and hockey jersey over his shoulder, watching. Again he let his eyes wander to Ryan's hand on Kendall. This time he didn't warn. "You're a slow learner, aren't you Lavery?" he said as he walked over and punched Ryan in the jaw.

Ryan fell backward, almost pulling Kendall down of top of him because he was still holding onto her. Zach caught her in time and peeled Ryan's fingers away from her. Then he picked Kendall up with an arm around her waist and carried her inside. "You and I need to have a little talk," he said in a low, angry voice. Ryan recovered in time to get his foot in the door before Zach could slam it shut.

"Hold on now, Zach," he said as he rubbed his sore jaw. "I don't know what's going on here, but I can't leave you alone with Kendall. Especially when you're this angry. I really think you should leave." Zach smiled then. He walked over to Ryan and punched him again, Kendall still in his arms. This time he caught Ryan under the chin, forcing him backward into the courtyard. "Goodnight, Lavery," he said and he watched Ryan's eyes roll back in his head before he passed out cold.

Zach slammed the door and locked it. He lowered Kendall until her feet reached the floor, but he didn't let her go. Instead her turned her in his arms and backed her up against the door. "Now where were we?" he asked as he lowered his head for a kiss. She wrapped her arms around his neck and let him take complete possession of her. She found herself straining to get closer to him as he ravaged her mouth, his hands twisted in her hair. Just as Zach made up his mind whether to carry her to the bedroom, or just take her right there against the door, he felt the door shake.

"Did the earth move for you too?" he heard Kendall say. He looked down and found her smiling up at him. He kissed her again and just as the kiss deepened, they heard a key in the door. They stepped back just in time to see Ryan coming through the door, key in hand, ice pack on jaw. "Unbelievable," Zach muttered, not sure if he could believe what he was seeing. "What the hell ... Ryan!" Kendall yelled. "How did you get a key to our front door?" she asked, incredulously. "I had it made when I moved in," he said casually. "You never know when I'll need to get in here when you guys aren't around."

"How about never?" Kendall said as she held her hand out to him. He placed the key in her hand and turned to Zach. "So, what did you do to her?" Ryan asked. "Nothing yet. We were interrupted," Zach answered dryly. "Huh? No, I mean why is she so mad at you?" Ryan said, looking back and forth between Zach and Kendall. "She doesn't seem to be mad anymore. But she is breathing hard," Ryan noted. Zach let out a sigh and shook his head, motioning for Kendall to deal with him.

She walked over to the open door and held it open for Ryan. "Go home, Ryan. Rachel and Spike are in the park. I told her to bring him to you when she gets back." He started to leave, but turned and stuck his foot in the door before she could close it. "Are you sure you don't need me for anything?" "No, Ryan. Everything I need is on this side of the door. Get lost." She ground the heel of her shoe into his foot until he howled. When he pulled his foot back, she slammed the door - again, and locked it - again.

"You were saying?" she purred as she turned back to Zach. He met her at the door and they resumed their kiss. She pulled on his hair in an attempt to draw him closer as his hands roamed her body. He'd made up his mind. There was no way he was gonna make it to the bedroom.

-------------------------

"I guess we should go outside and get my stuff, huh?" Zach said to Kendall some time later. They were on the couch in various stages of undress, wrapped in each other's arms. "Nah, most of it's not yours anyway," she said with a yawn. Zach cocked his head to the side and looked at her, waiting for an explanation. She shrugged."You'd think Ryan would recognize his own belongings, wouldn't you?" she giggled. "He was too busy trying to save you from your own husband," Zach replied, pulling Kendall closer. "Bastard."

Kendall suddenly jumped off the couch and headed for the door. "Where are you going?" Zach asked. "I just remembered that I did throw out a few things of yours. Things you might want to keep," she said, biting her lip. "Are you mad?" He walked over to stand in front of her. "No. I'm sure there's nothing out there that can't be replaced. Besides," he said as he took in her appearance. "You're not exactly dressed for going outside."

She looked down at herself and then at him, blushing slightly. "Okay, you go then." "What's out there that's so important?" he asked suspiciously. "Well, your hockey bat for one thing," she began. He rolled his eyes and laughed. "Stick. It's a hockey stick. And why did you put it out there?" "Ryan was here then and I wanted it to look authentic. I had to bring something of yours."

Zach walked to the door, opened it, and peeked outside. No sign of Lavery, or anyone else. It was probably stupid of him to go outside without his shirt, making it obvious to anyone watching what they'd been doing, but he did it anyway. He wasn't through with that particular activity, and there was no need to put something on that would just have to come back off.

"Okay, what else?" he asked before walking outside. "Well, that blue shirt of yours that you can't seem to keep on in my presence is out there ... somewhere," she said innocently. He growled, kissed her hard, and walked over to their new lawn sculpture. He rummaged around until he found the stick, and a few other things that he wanted to keep. But he couldn't find the blue shirt. He turned to ask Kendall if she was sure it was out there, but the question got caught in his throat.

There in the doorway stood Kendall, wearing nothing but his blue shirt, unbuttoned from the collar to the hem. He looked around to be sure nobody else could see her, then took his time admiring the vision she created. Kendall's body reacted to his gaze. They stood there for long minutes staring at each other before Zach made his way to her. Just as he reached her, he heard Ryan's voice behind him.

"Oh, hey guys. Kendall, have you seen my blue sweater? Or my gray suit? I can't seem to find most of my clothes," he said, scratching his head. Zach turned to stand in front of Kendall, totally blocking Ryan's view. "You really are slow, Lavery," he said. He nodded his head in the direction of the pile Kendall had created and laughed. "Have fun," he said as he pushed Kendall inside and closed the door.

"So, tell me Kendall. How did you get so many of Lavery's clothes?" Zach asked as he stalked her around the living room. "Oh I had a key made when he first moved in. You never know when I'll need to get in there when he's not around." They both laughed, but not for long. The look in Zach's eyes said he was through discussing Ryan.

Zach caught Kendall in front of the couch, ripped off the shirt she was wearing and backed her into their bedroom. This time he definitely wanted to take his time. He'd been right about one thing, he thought as he kicked the bedroom door closed and left the world behind, today wasn't so quiet after all.

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Aukalina

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Reply with quote  #65 
You rock 9K!!!!!!!!

Thanks for a great start to my day and a pick me up for a week off of Zach.

Looking forward to the next one as always. You are spoiling us and I love it.


Kathleen
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Reply with quote  #66 

Married love doesn't need to be boring.  You prove it again and again.  Romance should be alive and well during, as well as before, marriage.  Give us Love in the Afternoon.  If the writers were smart, they would make you a creative consultant.  You know what the viewer want.


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Oh, 9K! You've done it again.
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Fabulous, keep them coming and thanks so much for sharing.


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Roseann

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9K, thanks.  Always enjoy your stories before bed! 

Roseann

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I'm posting this one a little early, cause I thought we might all need it. I miss Zach Slater dangit!! [b]FOUR DAYS!!!!! [/i]

D-I-V-O-R-C-E

This was the day The Slaters had dreaded, but it couldn't be put off any longer. Not if they wanted the public, not to mention the police, to buy their story. No, it had to be done and today was the day. They were meeting with a divorce attorney. Divorce. Even the word stuck in Zach's throat. The idea of it was too depressing to contemplate. He hated it. Simple as that. And he hated himself for putting them in such a position. But he would get them out of this mess, of that he was certain. He took a deep breath and entered the restaurant.

"Odd place to plan a divorce, don't you think?" he said to the two ladies waiting for him at the table. "Trying to avoid a scene?" He made eye contact with Kendall, but willed himself not to smile. He knew his mouth cooperated, he could only hope his eyes did the same. He sat down beside her, suppressing the urge to move closer. Then he nodded in acknowledgement of the woman sitting across from him. "Kendall's headhunter, I presume," he said bitterly. "Well, I prefer the term attorney," she said. "But yes, Mrs. Slater has retained my services. My name is Elaine Frasier," she said as she reached across the table and shook Zach's hand.

Kendall's attention was diverted by the couple at the next table. She watched as the young Italian waiter took their order. The lady was obviously enchanted by the waiter's accent. Her companion was obviously enchanted by her. They looked so happy. Kendall felt a pang of jealousy. She longed for the day that she and Zach could be happy and in love in public again. Kendall continued to stare as the woman took out a picture and showed it to the waiter. She heard the word "kids" and smiled. Her smile froze on her face when she heard the waiter say "dogs" and begin to relay an animated story about his own pet. Kendall brought her attention back to the people at her table and braced herself.

Zach turned his gaze to Kendall, who sat beside him looking melancholy. "You okay?" he asked quietly. "As good as can be expected, I guess," she said. "How did we get here, Zach?" she asked. "I thought I would be angry, but instead I just feel so sad." Zach looked into her eyes and saw the truth of her words. She hated this as much as he did. He couldn't stand to see her pain. He needed to make her angry. He owed her that much.

"Angry? Why would you be angry? Because I took a little comfort from a friend at the lowest point in my life? Haven't you done the same with Lavery?" he said sharply. "You forced me into that, Zach. You know how to push my buttons. You knew how I'd react," Kendall said. Her voice was still calm, but he could see her anger blossoming. "I have never forced you to do a damn thing, Kendall. I'm not the one who's pushing your buttons. It's your new hero, Lavery," he said. Then he went for the kill, all the while begging her with his eyes to understand. "Isn't that your pattern? Sex as a weapon? Ask your boyfriend how it feels to be on the other side of that one for a change." Kendall immediately reached out to slap Zach, but he was too quick for her. He grabbed her wrist and stared at her. "Don't do it," he warned as he let go of her.

"Mr. Slater, Mrs. Slater, this isn't the place for this. We are in the middle of a crowded restaurant, remember?" Both Zach and Kendall turned to look at the lawyer, who was clearly embarrassed. Zach could see the laughter in Kendall's eyes and had to look away before they both lost their composure. "Now Zach ... may I call you Zach?" the lawyer continued. "I'd rather you didn't," Zach said. "For what I'll end up paying you, why don't you just call me John," he spat, glaring at her coldly.

She sat up stiffly and looked at Kendall. "Mrs. Slater, I can certainly see why you no longer want to be married to this man. Let's get down to business, shall we?" Kendall nodded while Zach continued to scowl. "Yes, please," Kendall said. "The sooner I'm away from him the better. He's a liar and a cheater. I never want to see him again." She couldn't look at Zach, even though she felt his hand on hers under the table. She wanted to apologize to him, but she had to play the part. She grabbed his hand and vowed to make it up to him later.

"Okay, let's get specific," Ms. Frasier said. "We need to talk about things like alimony, division of property, dissolution of the business partnership and dividing those assets ..." her voice trailed off when she noticed the look on Zach's face. "Is there something wrong, Mr. Slater?" she asked. "Damn right. Kendall and I entered into this marriage with our own money. We can sure as hell leave it the same way. She keeps what she came in with and I'll keep what I came in with," he said angrily. He looked at Kendall's calm, almost bored face, and wanted to laugh. He did laugh when he felt her bare toes making their way underneath the hem of his right pantleg. He recovered quickly by pretending to cough.

"It doesn't work that way, Mr. Slater. As your wife, Mrs. Slater is entitled to a portion of your net worth. She deserves a fair settlement. Wouldn't you agree?" she said smugly. Zach turned on her, trying desperately to control his body's response to Kendall's foot, which had begun to move up his leg. He released her hand under the table and grabbed her ankle before she went too far. He didn't dare look at her. He took out his frustrations on the poor attorney. "As my wife, Mrs. Slater is entitled to what she came with. Nothing more. If she gets half of my business just because we shared a bed, then I demand half of Fusion and all of its subsidiaries," he said. Kendall sat up and started shaking her head. Her attorney held her finger up in Kendall's direction and started to speak to Zach.

"You know what?" Zach interrupted. "Let's just end this right here," he reached into his breast pocket and pulled out an envelope. "What's this?" Ms. Frasier said as she began to read the document he produced. "I don't know, Kendall," he said. "If I were you'd I'd look for a new ambulance chaser. This one doesn't seem too bright." He rubbed Kendall's foot, which
now rested in his lap. But his attention was on the attorney, who was beginning to lose her composure. "You're the lawyer, Elaine ... may I call you Elaine?" he continued, not waiting for an answer. "You should know a prenup when you see it."

Both women gasped. Zach ordered a drink. "Mrs. Slater, you never mentioned a prenuptial agreement," Ms. Frasier said sternly. "I didn't know anything about it," Kendall replied. "I never signed a prenup when we got married the second time. I was on a boat in the middle of the ocean for God's sake!" She turned to Zach and pointed her finger in his face, all the while wiggling her foot in his lap. "You're a liar, Zach Slater," she yelled. The attorney looked around the room at all the curious spectators and again asked Kendall to lower her voice.

"Mrs. Slater, this seems to be completely legitimate ... and binding. Are you telling me this is not your signature?" she said as she showed Kendall the document. "I'm telling you I didn't sign any damn prenup, Elaine," Kendall said loudly. "What part of that do you not understand?" Zach disguised another laugh as a cough and patted Kendall's leg. "What are you trying to pull, Zach?" Kendall said, still yelling. Then she turned back to the lawyer. "Let me see that thing," she said as she snatched it out of the woman's hands. She read over it briefly and threw it at Zach. "You lying bastard!" she shrieked. "Prove it," he challenged, looking at her over his glass of scotch.

That was the last straw for Ms. Frasier. She'd had enough of this sideshow. She didn't need any more public humiliation. No case was worth that, not even a high-profile case like this one. "You know, Mrs. Slater, I think we are a bad fit. I certainly applaud your decision to end your relationship with this man, but I suggest you find yourself another attorney," she said as she stood up to leave. "You'll get my bill, Mr. Slater. Or would you still prefer John?" she said before storming off. Kendall and Zach both watched her leave with their mouths hanging open. "Well I never," Zach said to her retreating back. Kendall laughed behind her napkin and rested her hand on top of Zach's under the table.

"I think that was enough of a show," Kendall said. "What do you think?" "I think you are an evil, evil woman, Kendall Slater," he answered, no longer bothering to hide the smile in his eyes. "Say it again," she said as she closed her eyes against the feel of his hand on her bare skin. "Slater," he repeated. "Kendall Slater. Mrs. Zach Slater. Now and forever." She smiled, then caught herself and looked around to see if anybody was paying any attention.

"So where'd you get the prenup?" she asked in at attempt to change the subject, and the mood, before they really made a spectacle of themselves. "I have staff," he said. He stared into her eyes as his hand moved higher up her leg. Her first instinct was to give him better access, then she remembered where they were and pulled his hand back on top of the table. "Later," she said softly. Right now we have to make a hostile exit. Where are you parked?" she asked. "Across the street, half a block to the left," he replied. "Perfect. Give me the keys," Kendall said. Then she stood, calmly straightened her dress, and flung her glass of water in his face.

"You sorry son of a bitch. I hope I never lay eyes on you again. And know this, you will rot in hell before you get any of my company. Fusion is mine and it's off limits." She grabbed her purse and started out the door. "Lunch is on him," she said, pointing Zach out to the approaching waiter. Zach watched her leave, water dripping down his face. He took the napkin the waiter offered, paid the bill and left the table. "Women," he muttered under his breath as he walked past the couple Kendall had been watching earlier. "Nice dogs," he said as he noticed the photograph sitting on the table.

He walked out into the afternoon sun. He could see Kendall walking ahead of him toward his car, so he went around the corner and waited. In a matter of seconds, she pulled up to the curb and lowered the window. "Need a ride," she asked with a flirty smile. Zach settled himself into the car as she drove away. "So, sailor, what's your name?" Kendall asked as she put her hand on his thigh. "Just call me John."

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Roseann

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9K, thanks, you have me smiling.  It's 2:00 in the morning, and I can't sleep. Now, I'll be awake all night thinking about "John"!

Roseann

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Hahahaha---I love these stories-----and I would love to see them on my tv.

 

Great writing.

 

Fil


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9K, another great story.  It put a smile on my face.  Thanks!


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ninekaronas

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Bonus points for anybody who can tell me who sings the two songs quoted.

The Beginning Of The End

Kendall opened her door to find a box lying across the threshold. She came as soon as she heard the knock, but there was nobody waiting when she got there. Just the box. She picked it up to bring it inside, all the while looking around the courtyard for who might have left it. Ryan was not at home. She already knew that. He had taken Spike to the carnival at the park. Kendall tried to tell him that Spike was too young for that sort of thing, but he wouldn’t listen. He just wanted some time alone with his son, he told her. It didn’t matter how they spent it. Although she suspected he really wanted to spend more time with Annie and her daughter, Kendall relented, making him promise to keep Spike out of the sun.

Kendall took the box inside and opened it. Her breath caught in her throat when she saw the beautiful roses. The color was like nothing she’d ever seen before - somewhere between pink and peach. The color of a sunset, she thought to herself. She looked for a card, even though she knew who sent them. Only one person would have gone to this extravagance. Not just a simple dozen. Not for Zach Slater. She found the card in the bottom of the box. The note was brief, just as she expected: Thinking of you. Be ready at 5:00. Check the tag.

She shook her head and laughed. No flowery words from her husband. Just love beyond measure and thoughtfulness beyond compare. She pulled the flowers from the box and read the tag attached to the string that tied them together. She laughed then, once again amazed by the man she married. The tag read: The Kendall Rose. Delicate, beautiful and one-of-a-kind. She hummed to herself as she cut the string and began filling every vase she could find with the beautiful blooms.

When she was done, she went to get the card and tag. She would keep them both in the special place she kept her most treasured possessions - those things she could never part with. Suddenly she remembered what the card said. “Five o’clock!” she said aloud. “I better get going. Cinderella can’t be late for the ball,” she cried as she ran to her bedroom, taking a vase full of roses with her.

Two hours later she emerged from her room looking and feeling radiant. She had indulged herself with a long hot soak while she gave herself a facial and did her nails. Then she slathered herself in Fusion body lotion and put on her makeup. All that left was finding the perfect dress and trying to tame her curls. She chose a black slinky number to wear, and decided to leave her hair down. Zach seemed to prefer it that way. Just as she finished putting on her earrings, there was a knock at the door. She checked the clock as she passed and saw that it was exactly 5:00. “Right on time, as always,” she said to herself.

She walked to the door, expecting to find Zach. But he wasn’t there. Instead she found a uniformed chauffeur. “Are you ready, Mrs. Slater?” he asked, giving her a formal bow. “Um, yes. I’m ready,” she said nervously as she reached for her purse. “Mr. Slater asked me to give you this,” he said, handing her a single Kendall rose. Kendall smiled then, realizing that Zach knew her too well. He guessed she’d be a little apprehensive about leaving with a complete stranger, so he found a way to let her know it was safe. She locked the door behind her and headed off to meet her destiny.

————————————-

Zach stood at the gazebo entrance waiting for his beautiful bride. Sometimes they both forgot that she was still his bride. They were still newlyweds, only married a few months. Everything was taken care of: the food was warm, the champagne was chilled, the music played softly, and the candles were lit. All he needed was Kendall. He watched her coming towards him, fall leaves floating all around her as if they wanted to be a part of the procession. The gold and orange of the cascading leaves, coupled with the hues of the sunset behind her, made a spectacular sight. It took Zach’s breath away. She watched him as she approached, wondering about the look on his face. He looked mesmerized. It made her stomach flutter.

Just before she reached him, he seemed to snap out of his reverie. He came toward her and took her hand, leading her inside the gazebo. “Zach,” she said, confused by his reaction. “Is something wrong?” she asked. He smiled down at her as he ran his finger along her jawline, resting his eyes on her mouth first, then meeting her gaze. “What could be wrong on a night like this? You’re beautiful, Kendall.” He leaned down and kissed her, softly, as if she were so fragile he didn’t want to break her. She pulled back and smiled at him, then brought his head down to hers for a real kiss. “I won’t break, Zach. Kiss me like you mean it,” she said against his mouth. He complied enthusiastically.

————————————-

“Now that was fantastic!” Kendall gushed as she pushed back her plate and sat back in her chair. Zach raised one eyebrow as he watched her close her eyes and take deep breaths. They were both laughing. The meal had been good, but the company was better. Zach had forgotten how much fun spending time with Kendall was. He missed her so much, and knew she felt the same way. It was wonderful just being together, even if only for a while. To forget.

“Tell you what, sweetheart,” Zach began as he stood and walked over to Kendall’s chair. “Why don’t we work off some of our dinner?” He reached for her hand, but pulled back when he saw the look on her face. She was trying to look seductive, while trying not to laugh. “So what did you have in mind, hubby?” she said suggestively, arching her own perfectly shaped eyebrows. “What do you think?” he asked as he helped her to her feet. “Dancing of course,” he said, pulling her into his arms. “Of course,” she giggled as she wrapped her arms around him and held him tight. Time stood still as they clung to each other, swaying to the music, inhaling each other’s scent. Touching. Kissing. Feeling. Both wishing it would never end.

In the history of
A life takes a heart
When the power of love comes together
There is nothing can tear us apart
At the touch of your hand I can feel
That what we got is stronger than steel
That’s when you hear

My lover’s prayer
It’s my own silent message to you
Takes me there, my lover’s prayer
And my soul is divided in two
With my heart on the line
I send it all over the world
Out on the air
‘Cause I can’t let go
And my heart has a mind of its own
It’s my lover’s prayer.


“Zach?” Kendall said suddenly. “Is there something in your pocket, or are you just glad to see me?” she asked with a smile. He smiled back at her, then got very serious. “Come sit with me,” he said as he led her back to the table. She started to move to her own chair, but he wouldn’t let her go. Instead, he settled her onto his lap. Zach took the small box that he’d pulled from his pocket and placed it in Kendall’s open hands. She looked into his eyes for a moment, sensing a change in his mood. She opened it to find a beautiful heart-shaped diamond necklace. She gasped. Then she squealed. “Oh Zach,” she said breathlessly, “it’s so beautiful.” She looked into his eyes, waiting for him to explain. She knew her husband, and she knew he was extremely generous. But she also knew every gift had a meaning. And she couldn’t wait to hear the meaning behind this one.

He reached into the box and pulled out the necklace, then fastened it around her neck while she held her hair out of his way. He took advantage of the opportunity and kissed her neck and then her shoulders, before finding his way to her lips. She wrapped her arm around his waist, leaning into him. She broke the kiss and rested her head on his shoulder, giving them both a minute to recover. “Tell me, Zach,” she said at last.

He had one arm around her waist and the other hand was rubbing her arm absentmindedly. “This is where we started, Kendall. Maybe it’s where we will end. It was here that you told me you loved me for the first time. Will it be where you say it for the last time?” He paused to collect his thoughts, but she couldn’t let him go on. She held his face in her hands and waited for him to look at her. “Zach, this is where our happily ever after began, but it won’t end here. Because it will never end. We are forever, you and I. And the last time I tell you I love you will be just before I breathe my last breath.” She kissed him then and they sat together in silence while he rocked her in his arms.

“The trial starts tomorrow,” he said at last. The beginning of the end of this whole nightmare,” he said as Kendall placed her hand on his chest. “You and I both know that I’m innocent,” he continued. She nodded against his neck. “But there is also some pretty damning evidence, if you want to call it that. Not the least of which is the testimony of that lying jackass Tad Martin,” he said, his voice rising. He took a couple of deep breaths before continuing. He didn’t want to be angry. Not tonight.

Kendall waited for him to gain control of his temper and finish his explanation. She rubbed her hands over his chest in an effort to keep him calm. She had no idea the effect she was having on him. Zach was losing his train of thought, but it wasn’t because of anger. He placed his hand over hers. “Anyway,” he continued. “I gave you the necklace for two reasons. The first one is simple: I love you, Kendall. And I want you to have all the beautiful things in the world. You deserve more than I could ever give you.” Kendall lifted her head from his shoulder and looked into his eyes. He looked vulnerable. She couldn’t resist the urge to give him another kiss.

“And the second reason?” she asked while running her thumb along his lower lip. “The second reason is more selfish,” he answered with a slight wince. “If things go wrong in the courtroom ... if justice isn’t served ... then my heart can be with you always, even if I can’t,” he said softly. He watched tears gather in her eyes and roll slowly down her face. He hated himself for those tears. He hated Dixie and he hated Tad Martin. He tilted his head in surrender and wiped the tears from her face.

“Zach,” she said. “The necklace is beautiful and I will treasure it until the day I die. I’ll pass it down to our daughter, who will pass it down to hers. It will remain generations after we are gone, as a symbol of how much we love each other. But I don’t need anything to remind me that I carry your heart with me always.” She took his hand and placed it over her heart. “Do you feel that?” she asked. He nodded. “That’s your heartbeat, Zach. Not mine.” Then she placed his hand over his own heart. “That’s where my heart lives, Zach. You carry it with you. Whether that’s here in Pine Valley, or away in some prison cell waiting for the next round of appeals. We’ll be together forever. No matter what.”

He lifted her off his lap and then stood beside her. He pulled her into his arms and held her tight. “I love you, Kendall,” he said into her ear. “I know I don’t deserve you, but I’m so glad you’re here.” She stepped back so she could see his face. “I love you, too, Zach. Nobody has worked harder to get us where we are today. Not even me. You fought for us when I was unwilling or unable. That’s why you deserve someone much better than me. But I’ll never let her have you,” she said with a smile. “Fair enough,” he smiled in return.

“How does a moonlight stroll sound to you, Mrs. Slater?” Zach asked as he took her hand. “Sounds perfect,” she answered. “Maybe we can work off more of that dinner and come back here for a little dessert.” Zach looked her up and down before responding. “Sorry, I didn’t bring any dessert,” he said suggestively. “We’ll think of something,” Kendall replied as the two of them stepped out of the gazebo and walked into the night, side by side, each knowing that they would be together forever. No matter what.

————————————-

Zach couldn’t sleep. He was too occupied watching Kendall sleeping beside him as the radio played softly in the background. He didn’t want to miss a minute of their time together. He knew why she was tired. Dessert turned out to be rigorous, and very satisfying, he thought with a smile. For once in his life he was actually glad that Ryan Lavery was around. He’d willingly taken Spike so the Slaters could be alone for one more night. Kendall wanted to spend it at the casino, just so they could get to the dessert right away. But he talked her into waiting for them to drive home. He wanted them to sleep in their bed, not knowing how many more opportunities they would have.

Now that we’re alone
No more hide and seek
You are the highest dream to me
And as you softly sleep
Then I can tell you what it means
Locked in my arms like lovers lie
I will not let you slip away
Is this the summer of them all
Is this my night of nights
That you came to stay

Here you are owner of my heart
Just the way that love should be
And there is something I must say to you
If you promise to believe
That it’s you I’m living for
And I could not love you more


Now, hours later, the world was asleep and all was quiet. He wanted to spend the rest of his life watching her. Watching her sleep. Watching her laugh. Drying her tears after watching her cry. He wanted it all. He felt her begin to stir and watched as her eyes opened. She smiled up at him and his heart melted. “Zach, can we do something?” she asked softly. He looked at her like a starving wolf, but managed to keep his voice even. “Anything you want, whenever you’re ready,” he said. She laughed, then surprised him by getting out of bed. She stood beside the bed and waited for him to join her. She looked so beautiful to him, her naked body bathed in moonlight. He knew he’d do anything she asked.

“I want to dance with my husband,” she said sheepishly. “Is he willing?” “He is more than willing,” Zach said as he wrapped his arms around Kendall, first kissing her, and then pulling her closer. They stood there, skin to skin, soul to soul, and swayed to the music as if they didn’t have a care in the world.

Seasons may come and seasons go
But these are the truest words I know
Face to face, eye to eye
This is the summer of our lives
One love that cannot die

Here you are owner of my soul
Never let you say good bye
And there is something I must say to you
We leave the world outside
And you have come to me
At last, we start
Open up your heart
Let my deepest love inside
I’m only doing what I have to do
If you promise to believe
And I could not love you more

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Roseann

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Reply with quote  #75 

9K, thank you.  Beautifully written. 

Roseann

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Reply with quote  #76 

Oh, 9K. Simply beautiful. Thank you.

             

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Thank you 9K - you are amazing - so talented with your words


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9K you out did yourself.

Thanks again
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Reply with quote  #79 

9K, another beautiful bedtime story.  It was so touching, I'm still crying.  Absolutely wonderful.  Thanks for sharing your wonderful talent with all of us.


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No wonder I am wearing the rose-colored glasses these days.  It is your fault, 9K.  I have just caught up with all three stories.  You've been busy while I was out of town.  Each story was beautiful.  It's not too late for AMC to follow your lead.  It is a shame you don't write the story line for Zach and Kendall.

 

Your work is perfect.  Please keep it up.  Granny


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Great story 9K.  Wouldn't it be great to see them with this kind of storyline and getting through this trial together instead of apart and miserable. Thank you for writing such a beautiful story.

ninekaronas

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Well ladies, this is it. No more Zendezvous after this one, cause they don't have to fake it anymore. Thanks again for all the kind words and encouragment. And thanks for taking the time to read my little fantasies of how things should be. Can't wait to see what inspires me next.


Happily Ever After

"This is it," Kendall said to herself as she checked her reflection in the mirror. The day of reckoning had finally arrived. Zach and Dixie had been on trial for more than a week. Nine days to be exact. Nine days of misrepresented facts and outright lies. Luckily, Livia had proven to be a worthy warrior in this unworthy battle. She poked holes in every bit of "evidence" the prosecutor tried to present ... including Tad Martin's fairytale. Today was judgement day. Only not for Zach and Dixie. It was time for the corrupt justice system in Pine Valley to be judged.

"You ready to go?" Kendall looked up to see Ryan standing in the doorway. He had escorted her to court everyday as part of the ruse they were all still trying to pull off. Kendall lived for the day she and Zach could break free of the lie and be together again - in public, in private - Pine Valley be damned. Ryan had been a good friend to her, but she was tired of the game. Tired, really, of his constant presence in her life. There were no more staged moments of affection between Zach and Dixie or Ryan and Kendall. The strain became too much for the Slaters to live with. Kendall didn't want to pretend she and Ryan were lovers. She wanted her husband to come home. Maybe today would be the day. She took a deep breath. "Yep, let's go," she said as she sailed out the door behind Ryan.

-------------------------

Zach tried to keep his mind from wandering as the judge painstakingly issued his instructions to the jury. The morning had been spent listening to closing arguments from both attorneys. It had become more than tedious. It was hell. He was tired of the whole thing. And he was tired of Dixie. Always there, eager to please, Dixie. He didn't want to spend time with her. He wanted his wife. He wanted to go home to Kendall and Spike. Maybe today would be the day.

He looked over his shoulder at Kendall, something he did often. Maybe not the smartest thing to do, but he couldn't help himself. He needed her. And never did he turn to look at her that he didn't find her eyes on him. It was more comforting than she could possibly realize. He smiled at her and saw the love in her eyes. Just before returning his attention to the proceedings, his eyes fell to the dragonfly pin on her shoulder and he smiled again. She had worn it to court every single day. A testament to him of just how unwavering her loyalty was. He told her once that she had the greatest capacity for love of anybody he'd ever met. If he'd only known then how much he would test her. With a final glance at her, he shook his head and turned away.

-------------------------

The courtroom was only half-filled with gawkers and reporters today. The jury had been deliberating for almost two days. The hearing scheduled for this afternoon was sudden and, supposedly, unimportant. Just a formality, Livia had said. The jurors had some questions for the judge, and he'd agreed to hear them in open court. Most of the people who'd been present for the rest of the trial didn't even bother to show up. They were only interested now in the verdict. The facts weren't that important to the town's elite. They just wanted to see Zach Slater brought down a peg. They wanted to see him suffer.

Kendall, who was sitting right behind Zach, leaned forward and touched his shoulder. She knew it was a little risky, but the jury hadn't come in yet and neither had the judge. She had to touch him - to be near him. There hadn't been time for stolen moments during the trial. They were both being watched too carefully. She felt so lonely for him, even though he was two feet in front of her. So she touched him. Gentle and feather-soft. So soft she wondered if he even felt it. Then he placed his hand over hers and turned to her.

"Zach," she said breathlessly. Kendall was amazed at the effect he still had on her physically. Just having his eyes on her made her heart beat faster. She found herself breathing hard and losing her train of thought. She just wanted to stare at him. To be swept up in his arms and held forever. He looked at her as though he was reading her thoughts. Then he got up from the table, despite Dixie's protestations, and went to sit beside Kendall in the front row. He wanted to take her in his arms, but he knew he shouldn't. He glanced around the room to see who was watching before he ran his finger down the side of her face. She turned toward his touch and looked into his eyes.

They both jumped when Livia entered the courtroom and glared at them. Zach pretended not to notice. "It's almost over, Kendall. Don't give up on me now," he said softly. "Never," she said as she took his hand in hers. "I'll be here, Zach. As long as it takes." Then she straightened in her chair and transformed the look on her face to one of cold indifference. "You better go now," she said softly. Zach followed her gaze to see the judge entering and quickly resumed his seat at the defendant's table.

"Well, it seems we've all gathered here a little prematurely," the judge told the people gathered in the courtroom. The jurors no longer have a need to speak to me. They have apparently worked through their questions. In fact, they expect to have a verdict very soon. With that in mind, court is temporarily adjourned. But all parties are advised to stay close. As soon as the verdict comes in, we will be reconvening." He then rose from his seat and left the courtroom. Zach turned just in time to see Kendall running out the door.

"Zach?" Dixie said as she placed her hand on his arm. "Is everything okay?" She was annoyed that Ryan wasn't here to keep Kendall distracted. And with no jury in the room, Zach didn't even pretend to care about her. He was cold and distant. He tried to walk away from her, so she tightened her grip on his arm. "Is there something I can do?" she said with mock concern. "Sorry, Dixie. What I need to take care of ... well, let's just say I don't need your help." He peeled her fingers from his arm and walked away.

-------------------------

Kendall stood in the ladies restroom trying to hold back the tears. She didn't know why she had become so emotional when the judge said the verdict was at hand. Suddenly it all seemed so real. So final. If the jury believed the state's circumstantial case or Tad's lies, she could lose her husband for a very long time. How would she ever be able to stand it? She gave up the struggle and let the tears flow as she openly sobbed, grateful there was no one else in the room. She stilled when she felt a breeze behind her. She looked into the mirror and saw Zach standing there, holding a hand towel out to her.

"It's like deja vu all over again, huh?" she said, trying to make light of her embarrassment. "Only this time you're leaving with me," he said as he pulled her into his arms. He suddenly pulled away from her and went to the door. "We are alone, right?" he asked, as if just realizing where he was. She nodded and watched him lock the door before returning to her. Once again he pulled her into his arms.

"Don't cry, sweetheart," he said as he gently rocked her back and forth. "Everything will be okay. It's almost over. We are so close to being able to go back to our lives. I can't wait to go home. To see Spike and tell him bedtime stories. To make love to my beautiful wife and hold her in my arms while she sleeps. To wake up in my own bed with that same beautiful wife and make love to her all over again. We're nearly there, Kendall." He stepped back and looked into her face. Then he leaned down and kissed her, softly at first, then with more urgency.

They were interrupted by a loud banging on the door. At first they just ignored it, but it was annoyingly persistent. "Go away!" Zach shouted over his shoulder. The noise immediately stopped. Zach turned back to Kendall and continued kissing her. Nothing else mattered to him. His whole world was right here in his arms. And he would never leave her.

"All better?" he asked a few minutes later when Kendall lifted her head from his shoulder. She nodded and ran her hand over his chest. "You always know just what to say to make me feel better, Zach. It's one of the reasons I married you," she said with a smile. "It is?" he said, looking surprised. "I always wondered? What else?" he prodded as he took the towel from her and began to dry her tears. "Well, there's the money," she managed to say with a straight face. "Money huh? Okay, what else?" "And you're not bad looking," she continued. He puffed out his chest and lifted his chin, striking a pose like a Greek God. "Yeah, okay. Anything else?" "Well you did say it could be an open marriage. I could still have my 'friends with benefits' boy toys," she said, this time unable to hide her smile.

"Oh no," he said, pulling her back into his arms. "No friends. No benefits. No boy toys." He gave her a look that suggested he didn't really want to know what a boy toy was. "That was the first marriage. And I never really agreed to that part even then, if you think about it." She laughed and stood on her tiptoes to kiss him. "Don't worry, honey. I don't play with boys anymore. That's another reason I married you," she said as she turned to the mirror to repair the damage her tears and his lips had caused. She winced when she saw her reflection, then elbowed him in the ribs when he dared to laugh.

"Ready to face the world, Mrs. Slater?" he asked when she turned away from the mirror at last. "Let's do it, Mr. Slater," she replied, taking his arm. He gave her one last kiss before unlocking the door and holding it open for her. Dixie nearly fell down at their feet. She had been standing just outside the door, hoping to catch part of their conversation. "Thanks, Dixie, for guarding the door for us," Zach said casually as he pretended to help Kendall straighten her dress.

"This isn't over, Slater. Not by a long shot." Zach turned to see David Hayward standing in an alcove in the hallway. He had been watching Dixie eavesdropping and was getting angrier by the minute. "You know the one about the fat lady, don't you?" he smirked, holding his hand to his ear. "I don't hear any singing." "Maybe not, Hayward. But she's definitely clearing her throat," Zach said as he patted David on the shoulder and walked into the courtroom to await his fate.

-------------------------

"Zach, no!" Kendall cried, but it was too late. He was gone and she couldn't do anything to stop him. Except go after him. So she jumped to her feet and ran into the frigid water. It was a tropical island, but it was also the middle of the night. And the middle of winter, at least back in Pine Valley. Her husband thought a midnight swim was a good idea. She waded into the water, calling his name. She no longer heard the splashing and it was too dark to see anything. "Zach!" she yelled. "Answer me or you'll be sorry."

Before she knew what happened she was lifted off her feet and carried into the surf. Zach was already soaking wet and laughing. "Don't do it," she warned. He just laughed harder. When he got out far enough, he threw her in. She quickly made her way to the surface, sputtering and shivering. And laughing. "You're gonna regret that," she said as she began to stalk him. He let her catch him, but she was unable to push him over. She tried with all her might, but he wouldn't budge.

She wrapped her arms around him and leaned up to kiss him. When he started to respond to her kiss, she suddenly pulled back and started to walk away. "But Kendall, it's our honeymoon. Remember?" he said to her retreating back. "You can't kiss me like that and then leave." She turned back to him, looking contrite. "You're right, Zach. That's not really fair. Let me make it up to you," she said as she returned to his arms and once again reached up to kiss him. This time, when he leaned over her to pull her closer to him, she used her foot to sweep his legs out from under him, watching him fall into the water. She walked back up to the beach laughing.

"Wicked, wicked woman," she heard him say behind her, but she didn't turn around. She wanted him out of the water and into their room. It had taken her weeks to convince Zach to come on this trip. Not that they hadn't been honeymooning in Pine Valley. They had been behaving like the newlyweds they were since Zach was acquitted. He came home with he that very night and never left. Dixie was no longer a part of their lives, and Ryan was fading away into a relationship with Annie. The Slaters had barely left their home, or their bed, for nearly three months.

It had been glorious and Kendall was certainly not complaining. But she wanted a honeymoon, away from Pine Valley and the intrusions it offered. Like Fusion. Like the casino. Like Erica. So Kendall finally convinced Zach to bring her back to the place where they got divorced. Celebrating their honeymoon there would erase the bad karma of a divorce neither of them wanted. What better way to start their happily ever after?

Kendall's thoughts were interrupted by the sound of heavy footsteps behind her. She turned to see Zach running at her. "No way, Zach. I'm through playing mermaid. How about we try some indoor activities," she said suggestively. He stopped dead in his tracks, dropped the fistfulls of sand he'd been hiding behind his back and stared at her. He looked her up and down, slowly and thoroughly, before lunging at her. He swept her off her feet and carried her back up to the hotel. "You're more than a man deserves, Kendall," he said as he helped her out of her wet clothes. "But I'll try. For the rest of my life I'll try."

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Ande

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Reply with quote  #83 

HOW COOL 9K - I loved reading your entire story - It made me smile, cry, think and just thank you. Appreciate y our talent.....


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ZACH'S ALL FOLKS

Ande
Granny

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Reply with quote  #84 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ninekaronas
Well ladies, this is it. No more Zendezvous after this one, cause they don't have to fake it anymore. Thanks again for all the kind words and encouragement. And thanks for taking the time to read my little fantasies of how things should be. Can't wait to see what inspires me next.
I can't wait either!  I hope your fertile mind is churning away.  9K, I never get bored while reading your stories.  It is us that should be thanking you for the fantasies.  You keep our hearts pumping.  Thanks, Granny

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Thanks, Sharon, for putting Zach and Kendall in my backyard. Thanks, Karen, for attaching this to my posts.
Puppetwrangler

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Reply with quote  #85 

Thank you so much, 9K! I'm looking forward to your next endeavor.

Lorene

kzamc

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Reply with quote  #86 

Thank you soo much 9K for these great stories.  They were a great distraction to what's really being written.

Roseann

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Reply with quote  #87 

Thanks so much for the great mini's, 9K.  You sure kept us entertained.  I really think you should write a novel...  Hope to be reading you again very soon.

 

Roseann

tkaddicted

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Reply with quote  #88 

I can't tell you how much your minis gave me hope during the time we've had to endure the junk they've been feeding us.  I'm sorry they have to end, but I guess if we can look forward to our couple being together and happy, hopefully as you have allowed them to be, then I an live with it.  I look forward to another sequence of these vignettes, you are great.  You seem to know this couple much better than the writers on AMC.  Such a shame they don't have you as a writer, or at least as a consultant.  Thank you.


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Reply with quote  #89 

Thank you 9K for the great stories.  I can't wait for your next inspiration and hope it comes along soon.  With Zach as a catalyst it shouldn't take too long.   Again thank you..I enjoyed and looked forward to each chapter.

Ann

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Reply with quote  #90 

Oh 9K's, I am very late to this party, but I sooo love all your stories.  Now, it looks like we are going to get some good stories on the show again........at last.  *sigh*

But that is no reason for you to stop writing yours. (hint, hint)


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Ann
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Reply with quote  #91 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann

Oh 9K's, I am very late to this party, but I sooo love all your stories.  Now, it looks like we are going to get some good stories on the show again........at last.  *sigh*

But that is no reason for you to stop writing yours. (hint, hint)

I'll second that!    Granny

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Thanks, Sharon, for putting Zach and Kendall in my backyard. Thanks, Karen, for attaching this to my posts.
arhin

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Reply with quote  #92 

this the best if only this would happen in real life then all of our dreams could come true. thank you very much. keep writing you are the best.

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