Loving Michelle by Carla Chapter 20

Republisher’s Note: After feeling she had made peace with Danny on her trip, Michelle visits their newborn son’s grave.

Loving Michelle by Carla – Chapter 20

Michelle rearranged all of the items on Will’s grave and took a step back to view the arrangement. She had only been here a few minutes and already the feelings of sadness were overwhelming her. She had thought that seeing Will’s grave would be easier since she and Danny had finally been able to talk things through but the opposite was proving to be the case. Seeing Will’s grave and facing what she had done to Danny while they had been grieving Will’s death was slapping her right in the face and she was having a hard time dealing with it.

Usually she felt peace and serenity when she was this close to Will. She visited him at least every other day and miraculously had only run into Danny one time since the divorce. Ironically it was on Will’s birthday and it was the first time they had seen each other since they had parted ways. She remembered how tired he had looked and how she had wanted to reach out and put her arms around him and help to take some of that weariness that was etched on his face away. She hadn’t done that of course but maybe if she had, they could have shared together in their grief for Will and perhaps none of this would have happened.

She didn’t know how often Danny visited their son. Up until the day they had met there by chance, she had never seen any evidence of him being there. She, however, always brought something for Will when she visited. Sometimes it was a book or a small toy that she pictured him playing with. She talked with Will at length each time she visited him. She read him books, told him about the courses she was taking but above all, she told him about his father. She had realized too late what a grave injustice she had done to Danny in imagining him unable to love Will as much as she did or to grieve as hard as she had. She had been grossly unfair to Danny but she told Will constantly what a wonderful man his father was and that she knew, had he lived, he would have been a remarkable man like Danny.

She recalled the one gift that she noticed Danny had left for their son. She had noticed it on the visit after they had run into each other on his birthday. She had left to allow Danny to spend some private time with their son. The next day when she returned, she saw the small chain with their wedding rings on it left for Will by his father.

She remembered picking up the small chain and holding the rings in her palm and then closing her hand around the golden symbol of their once undying love. The unbroken circle had somehow been broken and she cried as she held her hand still clutching the rings to her heart and grieved for her lost love. She knew the rings were a gift for Will but she felt the need to keep them with her and if Danny ever noticed them missing and asked her about them, she would tell him that they were in her possession for safe keeping.

The rings were kept in her nightstand next to her bed and each night before she went to bed, she took them out, along with the picture of Will that Danny had taken before he died and she kissed them both. The remembrance of their near perfect love and the son that had been created out of that love, was the last thing on her mind before she lay her head down to sleep whether it was late at night after a 16 hour shift or early in the morning, after pulling an all nighter.

That was one thing she hadn’t shared with Danny the other night on the beach. She didn’t see what good it would do to admit that she still longed for him each night and held a lifetime full of regrets inside her regarding their failed marriage. They had made peace with one another and lay that past where it belonged. She had held onto the past and tried to learn more from it than it had to teach, but she had finally let it go.

She wondered what he would think if he knew that she had tried to see him after that day at Will’s grave when they had met by accident. Would he have been happy to see her? She had never gotten the chance to find out.

She had thought of nothing but finding him and talking to him since they met by chance and she had made up her mind to find him and tell him how sorry she was about her treatment and neglect of him and his feelings. She had hoped to bury the pain of the past by telling him it wasn’t his fault.

She had called the Santos house but was told that he was not home. She really didn’t think that anyone at that house would ever let her talk to Danny anyway so she had decided to drive over there and confront him face to face.

She was on her way to the house when she noticed his car outside of Towers. She parked her car and went up to see him intending to go through with her plan of helping to absolve him of his guilt. She had been the only one in the elevator as it made its ascent to the top floor and she had nervously wiped her hands on her skirt and took several deep breaths to calm herself.

She had gathered some courage and was all set to talk to Danny when the elevator opened. She saw him sitting at a table with Amelia and he had just handed her something. His back was to her and he never saw her standing in the open elevator. Amelia squealed when she saw the contents of the box he had given her and she jumped up and grabbed his neck and hugged him to her.

It was then that Michelle saw what Amelia had been so excited about. A ring. An engagement ring if the size of the diamond was anything to go by.

She had felt like she had been knocked in the solar plexus and somehow she found the strength to push the down button on the elevator and she was gone without Danny or Amelia ever seeing her.

She had numbly walked back to her car and went home where she cried herself to sleep clutching the gift Danny had given to Will to her breast.

She had diligently began working double shifts and remodeling the house to get her mind off of Danny and his upcoming nuptials and she had almost succeeded. The grueling hours at work and the mind numbing toil at home had just about put Danny Santos and his new found happiness out of her mind until that fateful morning last week when she had read the article that would change her life forever.

She would have to face him again. She had tried to get Carmen to let her talk to him when she had called him the morning of his wedding but Carmen had merely laughed at her and told her it was over. Danny didn’t love her anymore and was going to marry someone more suitable for him. Michelle had tried in vain to make Carmen understand that this wasn’t about her wanting Danny back, but that she had urgent business to discuss with him. She was rewarded with the resounding click of the phone in her ear as Carmen hung up on her.

She had been left with no recourse but to go to the wedding. Abby and Rick had received an invitation to the wedding and Michelle tried to get there in time to stop the wedding. She almost didn’t make it. They were just about to be pronounced man and wife when she had made her appearance.

The rest, as they say, is history, she thought as she took the picture that she had left on Will’s grave and stared at the happy couple that smiled back at her. That used to be us, she thought and she suddenly felt very old and tired.

She stared at the picture for a few minutes and replaced it tenderly on Will’s grave. She said her goodbye to Will and promised to come and see him the next day as usual. She turned from Will’s grave to go to her car when she found herself face to face with Carmen Santos.

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