I have no idea where this came from, but its full of fluffiness... just in time for the holidays!

If we live our life in fear
I'll wait a thousand years
Just to see you smile again

Side Story 1: Resistance

One year later.

I strode into the fancy restaurant as if I owned the place, even though my heart was pounding and my hands were shaking. I looked around at all the tables, finding Parker sitting at one near the back, in a secluded corner where we would have plenty of privacy. And we would need a lot of privacy, because I was ready to kick his ass.

One week earlier, Parker had called while I was at work and told me that he had to head back home. As in home home, where his parents lived and where his sweet ex-girlfriend lived. Apparently he had left something with his mother that he absolutely needed.

He told me that it was just a coincidence that Tiffany had called the week before he told me he was going back, and said that she wanted to get together for lunch or something while he was in town.

Yeah, coincidence my fucking ass.

I took a couple deep breaths, forcing myself to keep my temper in check as I walked up to his table. Parker noticed me quickly and stood up, looking as though he was actually going to try and impress me. We would have been dating a whole year in two days – I knew everything about him and couldn't really believe that he expected good behavior to impress me.

Parker was a natural asshole. He could act nice for awhile, but eventually things would go back to normal.

"Hey, I'm glad you came," he said when I stepped up to the table.

You're lucky I did.

I sat down, deciding to ignore him for the time being. If this was going to go like every other breakup I'd gone through, then I'd rather get it over quickly and without unnecessary conversation. Parker noticed my attitude about the situation and he opted to sit again without saying anything more.

A waiter came up and asked what we wanted to drink. I used the opportunity to piss Parker off, give him a little taste of what I had been feeling over the last few days. I batted my eyes at the young waiter, looked up and down his body with no effort to hide my ogling. The poor guy was clearly thrown off and probably intimidated when Parker coughed and cracked his knuckles.

I looked at Parker, smiling at the way his hands were clenched into tight fists.

"What the fuck was that about?" he asked angrily. His tone was low, more like a growl, and if I hadn't been so freaking mad at him… it would have been rather attractive.

"Wasn't about anything," I mumbled as I stared at the table, knowing that I wouldn't be able to keep up my controlled mask if I looked Parker in the eyes. I loved the bastard and it would kill me to see how much my flirting hurt him.

My mind seemed to click then, thoughts slowing coming together.

If he was going to break up with me, then why would seeing me flirt with another guy bother him so much? Well, it wouldn't bother him… which meant I had probably just fucked up big time.

"It didn't look like that to me," he argued, sounding even angrier. A constant mantra of 'shit, shit, shit, shit' was the only thing going through my mind. Even one year after the whole fiasco with Tiffany, all it took to ruin my trust in Parker was one phone call.


I was a terrible girlfriend.

"If you're still pissed off at me for leaving town last week, then you need to talk about it," he went on in that low voice. "Not fucking hit on the first fucking guy you see in front of me."

I couldn't help it; I looked up at Parker's face, my eyes widening quickly at how serious his expression was. There was no longer any doubt in my mind… Parker had no intention of breaking up with me and I had really just fucked up.

"Okay, I can explain," I started, but had to pause to gather my words. Parker was the one that usually started fights, thus he was the one who always did the apologizing. I was out of practice.

"Yeah, you better be able to," he spat with a roll of his eyes, clearly beyond irritated with me. I supposed I should have been grateful that he hadn't walked out on me. Lord knows if the situation were reversed, I'd have left the restaurant a long time ago.

"I thought you were going to break up with me." Skipped the blabbering nonsense. Straight to the point. I wouldn't have been able to say what I wanted if I didn't say it right away. I would have chickened out. "Guess I didn't believe you when you said it was just a coincidence that you were going back to your hometown a week after Tiffany asked for lunch. Figured you got together with her, realized you made a really huge mistake with me, and now you wanted to go back to her."

He watched me in silence. His expression never changing, but his fists relaxed. "So you decided to get me back by flirting with the waiter?"

I nodded, hating how pathetic that sounded when he said it.

"Well, if you didn't believe me when I said I haven't talked to that woman in the last year, do you even believe me when I say I love you?" he asked with a deep frown.

Well, shit...

"Why would you even ask that? Of course I know you love me!" I argued, not even sure why I was doing so. I didn't want to fight, especially not in the fanciest restaurant in town! How embarrassing would that be.

"You seem like you need me to prove it again and again, I'm getting sick of it." His voice had gone back to that low, intimidating tone.

"No, you don't need-" I tried to argue, but he cut me off with a wave of his hand.

"Apparently I do, and lucky for you, I'm willing to do it one more time," he said before shoving his hands into his pants pocket, obviously looking for something.

I had no idea what the hell was going on, so I decided to just sit there quietly and wait for him to get everything out of his system.

I even remained silent when he slid off of his seat and kneeled one on knee just to the left of me. But my heart did start to race and my clenched hands started to sweat.

"I fucking love you and I'm very willing to do whatever it takes to make you believe that," he said, never looking away from my eyes. Slowly, almost as if he wanted to kill me with suspense (even though I was pretty sure about what was going to happen) he pulled a small velvet box from his pocket and held it in one of his palms.

… I was going to have a heart attack.

"I visited my mom because she always told me that the ring I gave to my wife would be the one that's been in my family for the last few generations, and since you have been conveniently dating me the last year and I happen to love you, I figured... what the hell."

He smiled, and it wasn't one of his usual cocky smirks or half grins, but a full on smile. And with that I knew that he was being completely serious.

"I love you, Ashlyn, and I want to marry you." Flipping the top of the box up, Parker picked the sparkling ring out and took hold of my left hand. "Would you do me the honor... marry me?"

I didn't know I was crying until Parker's calloused hand gently wiped my tears off my cheek.

"Please tell me I didn't just embarrass the hell out of myself and you're going to say no," he mumbled, looking over his shoulders at all the people staring. I didn't notice them at all, the only thing I could see was Parker... asking me to marry him!

"Oh my god." I breathed, having forgotten how for a few moments there. "Of course I will!"

He smiled again and slipped the ring on my finger.

It fit perfectly.

God, I loved him.