Fruits of my Garden, Chapter 20

"Whew," Lorne said, sealing the last envelope, "that was a lot of envelopes to lick."

"Thanks so much," Federico said.

"No problem. That's what you meant when you said I could apologize with my mouth in a different way, wasn't it?"

"Oh yes – and apology accepted." Federico sat down in Lorne's lap and gave him a quick kiss. Lorne was surprised at how comfortable Federico was with his displays of affection – but he wasn't complaining.

Lorne saw the time on the clock. "Oh! I have to get going!"

"Okay," Federico said. "Hopefully the next time you're in my bedroom will be more… exciting."

Lorne grinned at him.

#

"Could you pass the salsa?" Federico asked. Liz complied, handing the small bowl over to him. Lorne and Liz had made nachos for lunch. They were delicious

"Excuse me for a minute, I have to use the washroom," Federico said. He got up and left the table. Once he was gone Liz turned to her friend.

"He's so polite! And sweet!" she said. Lorne blushed.

"Yeah, he's great."

A half hour later they were in the garden.

"So Lorne and I have been helping out, trying to rejuvenate this garden with some other people in the building," Liz said, leading them through the steadily growing plants.

"Just imagine a few years from now," Lorne suggested, "the plants will be so tall and beautiful."

Federico looked around approvingly. The summer sun was shining its noon-day rays, making the world seem more vivid and alive than usual. Federico was startled when a snake moved between his feet. Bees and butterflies moved from flower to flower, and pollen was in the air.

"This is the only thing from the old garden that we kept," Liz said, pointing to the cherry tree.

Lorne used his height to reach up and pluck two cherries connected at the stem. He put one in his own mouth and offered the other end to Federico. "For you, my sweet," he said around the cherry in his mouth.

Federico took the cherry and they pulled the stems apart, laughing. "Oh, it's really nice," Lorne said, surprised. "I was worried it would taste gnarly."

#

Weeks later, Federico was lounging with Lorne at Lorne's apartment. On a table he spied a leather necklace. "What's this?"

"What?" Lorne took a closer look. "Oh. That's something Robert gave me, while we were going out."

"Yes? What was that like, you and Robert?" Federico asked, curious.

"Oh, it was complicated. I'm much happier with you."

"Tell me about it."

"Okay. Um. We went out for a while but… it wasn't very good. Well, it was good at first but then, it got weird. I kind of squashed his heart, I think." Lorne looked forlorn.

"Mmm."

"I feel pretty bad about it. I was in a really messed up place, you know? I'm glad I'm passed that. But I just hope Robert is too."

Federico stretched out on the couch. "Have you ever apologized?"

"No, I haven't. I haven't seen him since before I saw you at the beach."

"Would it put some of your guilt to rest if you did?"

"I think it would."

Federico stopped there, but it was clear where that conversation would have led, and now Lorne's brain-cogs were turning. "Yeah," he said.

#

And thus ends our tale of Lorne, the man in search of Love, who journeyed far in the realms of the heart and sought long for the truth. We have seen him at his worst, and his best, and other, slightly awkward places in between. We have seen him friendly, lonely, loving, hating, brave, cowardly; we have seen many aspects of Lorne, and some aspects that contradict other aspects, and some aspects that were clear plot devices. And yet, through it all, we have kept faith that this is a beautiful life that is worth living.

The reader may have some questions floating around in her or his brain, unresolved. Here we shall have them answered.

After being kicked out of the apartment, Donny crashed at his brother's place, and began working as a fitness instructor, where he met many fit people and ended up with a long-term girlfriend who taught yoga at the same institution.

John graduated university with a degree in marketing, and got a well-paid job in a large firm. He quickly realized that marketing was not for him, though, and became an organic gardener, living just above the poverty line.

Marie became a successful artist, getting on the front page of "Canadian Art" magazine at the age of twenty-six. While her career always overshadowed Leonard's, they built a strong and mutually loving relationship.

Alita and Angela's careers never took off, because the year before they were supposed to graduate they became lesbian lovers and moved into an apartment in the Downtown Eastside, spiraling into alcoholism and addiction. When they died at the tragically young ages of 29 and 34, they were unknowns and looked down upon by society. But the beautiful gift of art they bequeathed upon the world was soon seen for what it was: genius.

Liz never found true love, but she did have a string of sexually satisfying lovers and she also won the lottery, so she didn't mind. She lived the rest of her years in a castle in Scotland, eating chips and ice-cream and studying obscure Eastern European folk dances.

Robert fell into a deep depression after his break up with Lorne. It haunted him for years afterwards, even when Lorne apologized. Then, in an inspiring and uplifting experience, he befriended a small child who lived across the hall from him, only to find out the child was dying from leukemia. Seeing her battle against certain death, he got out of his depression, got on with his life, and married her chemotherapist.

Lorne and Federico fell passionately and resolutely in love. After Federico graduated he decided he wouldn't go back to Barcelona, and they got married in a beautiful wedding where everyone cried (even Liz.) After the minister said "You may kiss the… groom," and they kissed, they both jumped up and high-fived each other, and then they were freeze framed, and the iconic rock and roll theme song began playing as the credits rolled.

A/N: So there we go. I hope it wasn't too awful. To those of you who've read this story to the end, you have my most profound respect. I don't think I could have done what you have done.

If anyone has major issues with the way I ended it, send me a message or leave a review. I could change it for you if you really cared that much.

It seems to me that this story is kind of bipolar. It has its manic phases and its depressive phases. This is pretty clearly a manic phase.

If you haven't already, check out "Tenderhearted". It's a good story! It's amazing! Wow, I probably shouldn't be shooting down Fruits of my Garden at his own going-away party. Three cheers for Fruits! Hip-hip, hurrah! Etc.