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It had been a week and a half weeks since they had gotten back from Travis’ graduation trip. They still hadn’t told their mothers that they were officially back together as a couple, which her Father had asked them both about, a few days after they’d gotten back. But they had plans to do it at the Chamberlin’s Summer Get Together! The summers were usually pretty chilly in their little hometown in Montana, so they always had a big bonfire and everyone in their little town came out.
She just grinned as she drove down the Chamberlin’s long driveway. It seemed like half the town was already here, including her parents. She looked toward the front porch, seeing Travis, who was waiting for her. She parked the Jeep and jogged up to Travis. [b “You ready?”]
Travis had told the man what had been in their heads when they had kept it from everyone. He even was more than willing to take the blame for them keeping it a secret. The man knew why her father had been upset with them. Hell, he might have even been himself. But it had to be known that the last thing on their minds had been to hurt anyone. They had just needed to know they would last before they let it out. If they didn't there was no need to have both their mommas and them hurt. This had been the safest option that they had had.
And again, Travis had moved back to Cori's side when she had decided to speak and to explain it had been both their choice. [b "We were only thinking of all of you, sir. Wanted to make sure it anyone was hurt it would only be us.."] He added quietly.
For a moment, the older man stayed silent as he took in the words that the two had spoken. Deep down, he knew that neither Travis or Cori would try and hurt them. But he was still hurt and upset that they had not told them either. And when he was able to find his words, Cor's father spoke. "I get it.. Just still wish the two of you would have said. To make up for this, y'all are telling your mommas." He muttered.
Cori smiled weakly when she felt Travis’ give her hand a soft squeeze. They would be okay, in some way or form, they would be okay. She nodded after she had heard Travis’ words. [b “I know.”]
She kind of hung back as Travis was speaking to her father. Surely he had to know that they never wanted to hurt anyone with their being back together. Heck. Everyone had always wanted them to get back together, she could see why her Father was upset, but then again, things were okay with the two?
[b “We wanted to tell everyone, we just wanted to make sure that we were going to last, Daddy. Travis and I both came to the decision that our relationship needed to stay between us for a little while. We didn’t want our mommas to get their hopes up.. Please. Don’t be mad.”]
His hand gave hers a squeeze. He knew Cori well enough to know she was freaking out and scared what her father might say. Hell, even he was afraid because this was the first they had both been on the man's shit list. [b "No matter what we're in this together.. Meant what I said about never letting you go again."] The man said quietly as he led her out to the parking lot and towards John Taylor's truck.
The look given to them was nearly the same as it had been in the diner. And his words almost wanted to become locked in his throat. But he said he would do this and he would.
[b "Sir... Cori and I never meant to hurt you or to make you find out this way. It had been my idea to not tell any of you. See we were just starting to get back together and testing the waters. We didn't want to have our mommas all excited and for this to end the same way as before. We had actually been meaning to tell y'all when we got home. So I am sorry.. Wanna be mad at someone...be mad at me."] The man said, his handing staying in Cori's and his eyes stayed locked on her father.
Cori smiled softly and shook her head. [b "This isn't your fault. We're happy, we're happy together. That isn't something we're ever going to apologize for."] she said. Truth be told, she had no idea what her Father would say to Travis, or even if he would speak at all.
[b "Travis."] she mumbled. [b "No matter what he says.. We stay together."] She took his hand and stood up. Following Travis outside, she looked over at her Father. [b "Can we please talk?"] she asked.
She was freaking out on the inside, so she was going to let Travis take the lead on this converstation.. It was his idea anyway.
John sighed as he looked at Cori and Travis. [b "Say what you think needs said then."]
Seeing that look in the man's eyes had hit something in him. It was the same his own father would give him when he really messed up himself. And knowing that he had gotten Cori in trouble with her father made him feel like shit. They had been meaning to tell their parents soon..but had wanted to see if things continued and they would be okay.
[b "Let me see if I can talk to him first. If I can't sort it out.. Then go with him and I'll see you tomorrow. I'm sorry baby girl that I got you into this."] He said quietly when he was able to unfreeze himself and give her the attention that she deserved.
Slowly he stood and had her hand in his. He wanted her with him so that way she knew exactly what happened.
[b "Daddy.. I can explain."] she said softly. The feeling of her magical moment with Travis had been pushed to the back now. [b "We can explain."] She didn't even know where to begin, but she could see the hurt look in her Father's eyes.
John Taylor just shook his head as he looked at his only child. [i "I just want to know when you started keeping secrets from your Ma and I, young lady."] he muttered. He was hurt. Cori and him had a better relationship than this. He was always the first person that she shared anything with. [i "I think it's best that you get your things and go get in my truck. Travis can wait here for his vehcicle."] he said. He turned around and walked out of the diner.
The young women was frozen. She didn't know what to say. She had only seen that disapointed look in her Fathers eyes one, in her years. That was when the sheriff brought her home after her breakup with Travis. [b "He's so mad at me..."] she muttered as she turned to Travis. [b "Do I go with him? I don't know what to do..."]
Well it was good to know that they had been on the same page. [b "Truth be told.. I wanted to get back in touch too. Just pride stopped and the fact it had been so long. Thought by now you would have moved on. "] He muttered quietly. This was the first time he could or would admit it.
Hell, even he struggled with the memories of that night. She had known what she wanted and he hadn't. Only knew he wanted to get out of their small town and wanted her to come with him. Cori of course hadn't been stubborn and not wanted to come with him. And they got into it. Said A LOT of stuff they didn't mean. It was like they had never loved at all. And everyday that bit him in the ass. He had been too stupid to realise back then that it would have never mattered. Just them being together was the best thing.
[b "Same here, darlin'. Same here."] And he did slowly deepen their kiss. It being like a light show and magical. But then that clearing of the throat came and ended the moment. Grudgingly, Travis did pull back from her, brown eyes on her father.
"Your momma was getting worried. Said for me to come and get the two of you. Said to have the company drive his truck back. Didn't expect to find the two of you like this." The older man said, gaze locked on them.
Cori smiled brightly at Travis as she listened to his words. [b "I always found myself wondering what if, or thinking that maybe I should try and get in contact with you... But my pride always got in the way."]
Truth be told, Cori still had nightmares from that night. They had fought and screamed in her front yard like they never had before. Cori wanted to be a teacher, and Travis didn't know what he wanted to do, but he knew where he wanted to go, and Cori was stubborn. She wasn't just going to back down from the arguement. She was young and had been stupid.
[b "You're not getting rid of me even if you wanted too. You're stuck with me baby."] she said softly. She practically melted into the kiss. She swore it was magic.... And like all things magical, they end. Her entire body froze when she heard someone clear their throat. [b "Daddy."] she mumbled as she pulled away from Travis and stared up at him. [b "Wh--What are you doing here?"]
Up until them finding the other again, if even by accident, Travis had been literally dead on the inside. He had just been trying not to be. But now he knew what it was to truly be alive and to feel it. And that was all thanks to the young woman, his high school sweetheart, and everything. Cori had always in her way been his saving grace, but before, Travis had been too young and dumb to realise that. He also had never really told her just how much she meant to him. A mistake he wasn't thinking to make again if he could help it.
When she was sitting beside him in the booth, the man's arms went around her and he did pull her closer to him. He wasn't always one for words, and as he got older that hadn't changed. She had always been the more expressive but that was one of many things he loved her for. [b "I know what you mean, darlin'. Up until we found the other again.. I didn't know what I'd been missing. Now I know it was you and I don't mean to ever let you go again."] Came his soft words as he returned her kiss.
It was the moment that their lips had met did a clearing of a throat come. One that they would recognize anywhere. "So, when were y'all planning to tell us?" Came the voice of Cori's father from beside their booth.
She looked at Travis from the other side of the booth and grinned before she stood up and moved so she could slide in next to him. [b "I wouldn't want to be stuck in a little town with anyone else."] she said as she reached down to grab her coffee. [b "I think it's smaller than our town, but you have to admit, it has a certain charm to it."]
She thought about his question and nodded. [b "Exploring and shopping sounds fun. There was a little boutiqe around the block that I want to check out... What would you think about staying another night? We can just hit the road bright and early in the morning?"]
Her arm wrapped through his. [b "This has been the best little get a away that I've ever had. I know now that all I'll ever need in this life to be happy, is you. Travis, it has always been you."] she explained. [b "I'm so glad that we found each other again.."] She leaned over and softly pressed her lips to his. [b "I love you."]
Wasn't the first time he had come to the small town they were in. And it wasn't the first time he had broken down there either. It was how he had known that it would be the half hour before anyone got to them. But during that wait, Travis could admit that he felt a little bad that Cori had been called by her momma at least twice and she had to remind the woman that he was with her and she would be fine. But on the up, it was good to see that her mother cared. His own actually would have been going crazy too if he had called her. But he had decided against it because he didn't want to give her anything else to worry about. Least of all him.
[b "Might be a fun project for the summers. Teach school semester and run a Bed and Breakfast over the holidays."] The man said when they had come to the Bed and Breakfast. It was by chance or by luck because the ONE hotel that was actually in town was booked. This place still had two rooms open, which the two took one of gratefully with it being late and them needing the sleep.
By lunchtime the next day, both had woken and were starving. It was lucky for them there was a small diner not far and the food was pretty decent. [b "They did say the truck should be up and running again in the early evening. Did you wanna explore and maybe do some shopping while we waited?"] He asked after taking a couple sips from his tea. He had no idea her father was just coming into the diner himself.
Travis was right. It was about thirty minutes before someone finally came along in a tow truck. She had never been so grateful to see a rusty old truck. Her mother had called her twice before the tow truck had gotten there. She said she didn’t like the idea of her being stuck in some little town they didn’t know anything about, but her Mother seemed to forget that she was with Travis. She had to reassure her that Travis wouldn’t let anything happen to her.
They had found a Bed and Breakfast by luck. The one hotel in town had been completely booked up. But the bed and breakfast had two rooms left. [b “You know. If I didn’t love teaching so much, I think it would be fun to open a Bed and Breakfast or even a little diner.”] she told Travis.
After they caught up on some much needed sleep, they headed to a little diner that was in the middle of town. It was lunch time and they were both starving.
The man knew the town the had ended up stranded outside of. Some weekends when he needed to get away he would come out here. It was a small and quaint town that always made him feel like he was back home. Probably why he wasn't freaking out that they had broken down like this. [b "Nah..it's fine baby girl. I should have showed you the map and the area before we started off."] He said with a small and guilty smile.
When she asked if he wanted her to call everyone, the man nodded. He could deal with ohone calls if he had to, but he hated them. Besides he had to find his card. So Cori would be better at the whole calling thing. Plus he knew she was less anxious when she had something to do.
[b "We have about half an hour if they're sending someone out. Might be a good time to tell ya that I've done this before. The breaking down...and just coming out here. We"ll be fine even if your daddy doesn't come."] Travis said and gave her a smile, his hand moving into hers as he leaned on the truck.
Cori calmed once she felt Travis’ hand squeeze her own. She wasn’t usually that easy to scare, but she had been almost in a dead sleep. [b “It’s fine. I’m sorry I reacted like that.”] she looked around and realized they were in the middle of nowhere, but then she heard Travis say there was a small town nearby, he must’ve drove through it while she was asleep.
[b “Do you want me to call the company?”] she asked as she unbuckled her seatbelt. [b “I’ll have to call momma and daddy and let them know, they’ll be worried. I’ll have my momma call yours too honey.”]
She found the number to the local garage and called and tried her best to explain where they were. He somehow knew, even with her sloppy directions. [b “Someone is on their way.”] she said to Travis after she had stepped out of the truck. [b “I called momma too, and she insisted that Daddy could come get us, but that we would be just fine.”]
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