Mistaken Identity by Lisa Chapter 9

Republisher’s Note: Michelle’s loving nature comes to the forefront.

Mistaken Identity by Lisa Chapter 9

Michelle filed into the body of the plane along side much happier passengers then herself. She felt removed from what was taking place around her. Seemed as though she was the only person there afflicted with this dark cloud overhead.

She found herself listening to parts of the conversations taking place around her. One older women was on the way to her granddaughter’s wedding, another couple was about to see their grandchild for the first time, two high school sweethearts were on their way to college together. Listening to the pair cooing at one another made Michelle’s heartache. If she closed her eyes she could see Jesse and herself. She was able to hear all the promises that they had made to one another. How one day they would be married and living in the lighthouse. Those promises now were nothing more then a memory. A sham of what she once had considered her greatest love.

The chatter that surrounded her was annoying. For Michelle wanted all around her to feel the pain that she was. Why was it that she was the only one hurting? She slipped into her seat hoping that the isle seat would remain vacant. Unfortunately her wish was not to be granted. Out of the corner of her eye she caught the faintest glimpse of a body come to sit next to her. She shifted her posture away from the individual beside her. The last thing she wanted to do was be forced into some inane conversation for the duration of this flight. Michelle much rather wallow in her own misery.

The flight attendants voice compelled her to look up. It was then Michelle saw the sad expression the person beside her wore. She could only image that it mirrored the one she wore as well. The girl that sat along side of her couldn’t have been much older then Michelle herself. She was a petite thing with coal black hair and eyes the color of the Caribbean Sea. Michelle found herself studying the girl. Trying to imagine the cross that she had to bare, but she was as unreadable as Michelle was. Absently Michelle wondered if that’s just how shell shocked she looked as well.

“The pilot will extinguish the fasten your seat belt sign as soon as we have achieved cruising altitude,” Michelle averted her eyes to the woman standing to the front of the plane.

Michelle noticed the young girl’s hands tighten around the arms of her seat as the plane began to taxi for its take off. A look of utter filled her face as the jet began its climb.

“First time on a plane?” Michelle found herself asking before realizing that she had spoken.

“Uh-huh,” the girl returned without even opening her eyes.

“It will be over before you know it.” Michelle had no idea where this upbeat attitude was coming from. Moments before she would have been content to see there for the entire flight drowning in her own self pity but something about this girl’s face wouldn’t let her do that.

“It won’t be soon enough for me,” she said with a quiver in her voice as the plane leveled out.

“How about we get a drink?” Michelle asked.

“I’m not old enough.”

“Neither am I,” Michelle laughed, “But up here do you think anyone will care? Excuse me,” Michelle said reaching for the nearest flight attendant.

“Yes?”

“Two white wine spritzers please.”

“Certainly.” With that the woman made her way back to beverage cart.

“WOW!” the petite girl commented.

“See, nothing to it.”

“Here you go ladies. Enjoy the flight. My name is Joan should you need anything else.”

“Thank you,” Michelle said taking a sip of the drink.

“I can’t believe she just handed us a drink no questions asked. It was never that easy in a bar. By the way my name is Sarah Wainwright.”

“Hi Sarah, I’m Mich……Melanie,” Michelle was quick to catch herself. This whole name switch wasn’t going to be easy.

“Nice to meet you, Melanie.”

“What has you going to Texas?” Michelle asked before she really thought what she would say if the question was returned to her. Ben had gone over many things with her but not much background on why she was heading to Texas in the first place. She didn’t know if she should make something up or do her best to avoid the questions. Before Michelle had a chance to agonize over it any further she saw Sarah burst into tears. She sat frozen for a moment not knowing what to do or to say. “Sarah?” she finally questioned tentatively placing her hand on the girls trembling shoulder.

Between sobs Michelle was able to piece together that Sarah’s parents divorced when she was quite young. Apparently she was an unexpected bundle of joy that her father didn’t know any other way to handle but to runaway from.

“I don’t even remember the man!” Sarah cried, “And now I don’t have any choice, but to live with him.”

“Why?”

“My mother had cancer and before she died she made provisions for me to go to Texas to be with him so I could at least finish college,” she said through a strained voice.

“I’m sorry about your mom,” Michelle choked back her own tears. She knew how painful it had been for her losing Maureen and she at least had a loving family around her for support. It was tough to imagine what it would be like for this girl walking into a man’s life she didn’t even know. She laughed thinking that their situations were very similar. Sarah may not have had to change her name but she had been uprooted from the only life she had ever known in much the same way that Michelle had been. Under either circumstance it sucked.

“She had struggled for a long time. We knew that she wasn’t going to make it but……….”

“It’s okay,” Michelle cradled the young woman in her arms. For the first time in months she had someone other then herself to think about, “I lost my mother too. I was twelve and she died in a car accident.”

“I miss her so much. She was my best friend!” The anguish was evident in her tone.

“I miss my mom every single day since she has been gone. It gets better though. It’s not always pain. One day you will remember with tears but they will be tears of joy at all the wonderful things about her.”

“I wish that I could believe you.”

“Don’t get me wrong I still have days when I wish that it had been anyone but my mom in that car but mostly I remember what a great lady she was. How she could light up any room that she walked into. How people flocked for her home cooking and wonderful advice. It won’t always be so dark….I promise”

Michelle found it hard to believe that she had just said that. Not more then an hour ago she had stood in front of Agent Reynolds as he said the exact same thing to her and she had scoffed at the thought.

“I think I could handle her being gone if I didn’t have to be with a man I don’t even know. He has never once seen me or sent me a birthday card. I will be surprised if he even recognizes me when we get off the plane.”

“Do you know what he looks like?” Michelle questioned.

Sarah pulled out a tattered photo of a man from twenty years ago. “My mom said that he will look the same.”

From the photo, Michelle saw where Sarah got her exotic features. She was the spitting image of her father. “He’s very handsome.”

“Mom always said he was a charmer. That she fell for him hook, line and sinker.”

“I can see why.”

“Too bad he cared more about his looks then he did me.”

“You don’t know that,” Michelle tried to give her some hope. It was funny to her now that had roles been reversed that was the last thing she would have wanted to hear. “I’m sure your mother wouldn’t have sent you to him if she didn’t think it was the right thing to do.”

“Maybe……but right now all I want to do is go home,” Sarah cried.

“Me too………….,” Michelle thought to herself.


Danny sat in the terminal of the Kansas airport still doing his best to process the information that his travel agent had given him for his being bumped from his original flight. If it had been something to do with the state department where had all the security been? The Springfield airport didn’t look any different then it had any other time he had been there. There was something about it all that left a strange feeling in the pit of his stomach. He fought the urge to call Carmen just to gloat that he had gotten away. That whatever manipulations she had tried hadn’t worked. But he didn’t. He couldn’t take the chance that she would be able to trace him in any way. He had promised Uncle Albert that he wasn’t going to put his new way of life in danger and he intended on keeping his word.

Danny heard the voice boom over the loud speaker. That was last call for his flight to Texas.

“Uncle Albert,” he said into the receiver, “I should be arriving at the airport in less then an hour.”

“I’ll be there,” his uncle returned.

“Are you sure about this? I mean Aunt Jenny didn’t seem to thrilled with my call,” Danny said giving his uncle the opportunity to back out. He had every right to protect the life that he had built for him and his wife.

“Everything is fine, Daniel. We will be fine,” he returned.

“Thank you so much. I can never repay you for the chance you are giving me.”

“It’s nothing. I only want what’s best for my brother’s only living son.”

“I have to get going. See you soon.”

“Soon, Daniel.” Albert returned the phone to its cradle and met his wife’s disapproving stare, “WHAT!?!?!”

“I don’t like this Albert. Not one bit.”

“What was I supposed to do, Jenny….turn my back on him?”

“Yes!!!!!” she said as if that was the only right answer.

“I can’t do that. Daniel is family!”

“Family!?!?!? That ‘family’ has done nothing but cost you, Albert! It cost me my only child and you expect me to welcome Daniel into my home????”

“Danny was just a boy when Richard was killed. Danny had no involvement in the business then. My Lord, Jenny, he was less then seven years old,” Albert returned exasperated.

“You always said that Daniel was his father’s son. So what makes you believe him when he tells you that he doesn’t want that life?”

“I believe him.”

“WHY?!?!?…….HOW?!?!?”

“I can’t explain it to you, Jenny. I know it here,” Albert rested his hands on his heart. “I heard it in his voice. He sounded the way I did when I went to Migel. He had the same defeat in his voice that I had. My brother gave me absolution. He gave us a way out and a clean slate………I have to give that to his son. Can you understand that?”

“I wish that I could Albert……I wish that I could.”

“I believed him when he told me that Carmen would not be a problem………”

“Is this the same Carmen……..” Jenny broke in, “The women who was so power hungry that she didn’t even wait for her husband’s body to get cold in the grave before she claimed what she thought was rightfully hers?” Jenny found her voice raising, “Albert, please tell me that you aren’t counting Carmen Santos out of the picture. She hates to lose. And I don’t imagine that she will be taking Danny’s leaving lightly!”

“Jenny, you don’t understand how ‘la familia’ works. Carmen had to step forward to claim what had been Migel’s for her children’s sake if nothing more,” Albert knew he was giving Carmen far too much credit.

“For her children’s sake?” Jenny echoed in disbelief, “If that had been me and I had just buried my husband because of ‘la familia’, she said sarcastically, “I would have taken my children and I would have run and never looked back…………oh yes, that’s right I don’t have any children thanks to ‘la familia’!!!!!”

“Jenny,” Albert went to his wife but she turned her back to him. The tears for the loss of her only son were something that she never let be seen.

“I’m scared Albert. I couldn’t bare to lose you. I don’t want to be pulled back into a life where every time you walk out the door I am afraid I will never see you again,” she cried in agony.

“Daniel isn’t a threat. He isn’t about to bring Carmen swooping down on us. Trust me please,” he begged.

“I want to….but every time I close my eyes I see Richard’s funeral all over again. I see all those men in black suits paying their respects when I know damn well that one of them was responsible for killing my baby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” she shouted unable to hold the tears back any longer.

“Ssshhhhhh,” he rubbed her hair. “That’s why I got out. I could have taken my revenge, Jenny. I could have killed the men responsible for gunning Richard down, but that wasn’t going to bring him back to us. I saw no reason to go forward. I couldn’t do it anymore. I know that you can’t or don’t want to believe me but Daniel is in that same place I was then. Avenging Mick’s death won’t bring him back and I have a sneaking suspicion that Danny had no intention of ending up like his father and brother.”

“What if you are wrong? What if Danny is more like Carmen then you imagined?”

“Then I will send him packing. I meant what I said to him. I don’t want my old life running rough shot over the life we have made for ourselves here. I would never do that to you again Jenny, NEVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Jenny wanted with all her heart to believe her husband. She didn’t want to see Danny as a threat to her existence but she had a feeling that she just wasn’t able to shake.

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