Jean felt her heart drop deeper into her chest.
"What is it Jean?" Patty – who was the one in the driver's seat – said.
"My granddaughter is here," Jean trembled. She got out the car and didn't even realize that she hadn't shut the door.
Lilliana walked to her cautiously as if she was to confess a murder. Jean instinctively opened up her arms and stopped on her tracks once she was half way to her.
Her granddaughter then began to walk faster and faster until she crushed into her making their embrace unforgettable.
"Nana Jean," she said with relief.
I followed my gut, like you said," she released herself from the hug and wiped the single tear that escaped from her eye. "It told me to come here."
"Of course it did, baby." Jean took her granddaughter's hand and started to head towards the house. Once they got to the front porch she then saw Bobby.
"Miss Jean...Do you know her?" Bobby asked her.
"Why wouldn't I?"
"I told you I wasn't lying," Lily said to him.
"Let's all get inside and have a chat. Oh and I see you brought luggage with you, Lily. Good I like long visits" she smiled. "Bobby why don't you carry those in for her and help Miss Patty with the groceries as well. Oh happy day."
Nana Jean and Lilliana were sitting in her cozy living room with her hands fidgeting. She was waiting for Nana to come in and speak to her and couldn't help but feel like she was going to be in some sort of trouble.
Lily looked around the room taking in all the memories and curiosity as she could. This was exactly how she imagined her great grandmother living. The room was filled with bright sun and had miss matched furniture that seemed to compliment each other. In a way it reminded Lily of her sunflower field back home, warm and inviting. It smelled like firewood, peppermint, and lavender.
Nana Jean entered the room and sat next to her.
"You've grown so much. If it wasn't for the pictures you sent me I probably wouldn't have recognized you." Jean gently ran her fingers through Lily's hair admiring it. "Tell me, baby, how did you get here?"
"Oh, you're friend?"
"Do you plan on telling your father?"
Her face froze. So she knew.
"He called me this morning asking if I had heard from you and that you were gone."
"Did he sound angry?"
"No, worried is more like it. He asked to contact him if I heard anything."
Lilliana got a cold shiver down her spine and kept her head down feeling like a horrible person. She knew this wasn't the most ideal situation to be in and her father is just frantic. She couldn't imagine what to say to him if she were to return to him. Lilliana had seen him angry before, but her idea of his reaction to what she has done is something she can't even begin to describe.
"Don't worry, I won't tell him until you are ready."
"I'm not sure how long that would be," she whispered, confessing.
"You take all the time you need, baby."
"I'm sorry, Nana. I know I am putting you through a horrible imposition."
"Nonsense. You're gut needed you here and we are going to figure out why together."
"So, you are not mad?"
"Not even the slightest." Nana smiled. "But I would like to know what's going on in your head."
"So much yet not enough. I feel like there are puzzle pieces missing and I have no clue on how to put them together because I don't know what the picture is. And I thought about asking my father or May for help, but something just tells me like they wouldn't listen. Or perhaps not give me the true answer. In a way - and I know this is crazy - I feel like my mother would listen to me. Now, more than ever, I need her and she isn't here. And it's pathetic that I can't imagine anything that she would say or do to make me feel better. I needed the closest thing to her and I didn't know what that was. Then your face popped into my head, and impulsively I ended up here." She wiped the tears from her eyes. "And when I noticed the lavender field in your front yard…it's layout is the exact one that I dreamt of."
"Well I feel it proves that this is where I need to be right now."
"Yes it does." Nana took Lily's face into her hands. "And I am going to help you get to know your mother but for now why don't you settle in." Jean starts to get up and she opens the curtains – that were covering the window that shows the lavender field – and the room becomes even brighter.
Nana Jean leaves the room, letting Lilliana gather her thoughts.
Lilliana took a deep breath and tried to calm her heart down. She had so many emotions running through her right now. Lilliana was nervous and fearful, from the thought of her getting into trouble by her father. She felt tired, and still hot from the humidity. As she kept her breathing at a good pace, she started to breathe in the lavender scent that intoxicated the house, and it automatically soothed her.
Can't back down or give up now. She thought.
My location has abruptly changed recently, again. I am not in New York or in Maine; I am somewhere else. Somewhere new, I've never been here before but sometimes it just feels so familiar. The first day I arrived at Nana Jean's was the most spontaneous thing I have ever done in my life. Something like this usually ends up badly, I assume, but not with Nana. She understands me in ways I feel no one else could. At times I feel like I am talking to someone that I've known forever. Which is bizarre because I've only met Nana Jean once before this, and I was so young I can hardly remember. But it's her presence that makes me feel so at ease. Back at home I was constantly being watched and I had to be perfect, but now I'm learning, and stumbling my way around the cottage. Seeing things I've never seen before, things that are from back in the day when Nana was a little girl.
I'm sleeping in the extra room. Nana said it used to be my mothers room when she would visit. It's different from what I'm used to. Very yellow and olive green colors. And I sleep on a smaller bed than I have back home but I don't mind not one bit. It has a sort of charm that only you can achieve authentically.
Nana just left to run an errand and now her rude neighbor Bobby is here. I'm still waiting for his apology that he darn well owes me but I hear men can be very proud. Luckily for him I can be patient.
Last night was the first night I had spent here and truth be told I don't remember dreaming. But I had a glorious sleep, such a sleep I've never had before. I woke up this morning feeling well rested, and something stirred in my stomach so heavily, it felt strange. I got this sudden urge like how I felt before when I arrived yesterday. The feeling of life offering me something so out of the ordinary and something so rare. I would be crazy to ignore it.
I am wondering what daddy and May must be going through. Daddy must be angry with me. However it is my life and I can't live it if I go back.
Still…I would be hiding my true self if I didn't confess that I feel guilty. All daddy would say is that he wants what is best for me. But I now wonder if what he feels is best really is the best. What if this whole time I was missing out on something and in order for me to be the best I had to experience it. Well I guess I just found my speech to tell him for whenever I return. If I return.
Ah, I should be finishing up now.
Until next time, Diary.
Lily closed her diary and placed it on the nightstand next to her bed. She then went to the mirror, that was hanging on the wall, and looked at her hair. It was going to be odd now that May wasn't here to do it. She didn't know a thing about tending hair. She tried arranging her loose curls around until they looked decent enough. Maybe Nana could show her how to tame it.
Her thoughts were jumbling around and rested on her friend Annie. She wondered on how much trouble Annie was in. She also was curious on if Annie would ever give in and tell her family where Lilliana was. Of course Lilliana would not blame the girl, she would complete understand. This was not the best scenario to put her best friend in. Oh, Annie, if she only knew how much Lilliana missed her.
After attempting to fix her hair she went into the kitchen for a muffin and saw Bobby sitting down reading some letter.
"Mornin'" said he.
"Uh, she should be back in a hour or two." He says it a little hesitantly.
Lily nodded her head.
She headed towards the door.
"Where you goin'?"
Once Lilliana stepped outside she felt the thick breeze flow pass her. The wind chimes were singing its serene, soprano tune once again. Out of nowhere she had goose bumps once the lavender field started dancing towards the left direction. She immediately thought of her dreams, and how in everyone she would be searching for a box somewhere, mysteriously in the field. The smell of the field was soothing as usual.
Usually back home, especially on a day like this, she would be in her sunflower field with Annie.
Behind her she heard Bobbie open the creaky door. He stood right beside her, with his hands in his pockets, not saying anything, just looking at the same view she was.
She rolled her eyes in her mind. She had a feeling that even miles away from home, having a moment to herself was something no one was going to allow her to have.
The thick humid breeze flew pass her again.
"Hot, isn't it?" Bobby said.
"It's definitely a day with sun," she added.
"There is a lake not too far from here. I always go when the heat is too much to handle."
"Is that an invitation?" And your version of an apology! She added in her head.
"No, I was just saying. Besides, I wouldn't expect you to enjoy something like a lake. It might be too dirty for your liking."
Who was he kidding? Every time she was in her sunflower field she always got a little dirty. As long as you clean yourself up afterwards, what's the harm?
She just rolled her eyes at the poor mannered boy.
"Don't take this the wrong way - actually take it anyway you want - but what are you doing here?" She asked.
"I take care of Ms. Jean," he answers defensively.
"In exchange for?"
He didn't answer, he just looked right passed her and fixed his eyes on some meaningless object.
Lilliana felt a little bad for prying.
"You don't have to answer, it's my mistake. I shouldn't have asked such a personal question." She mended.
He blinked his eyes twice, taken by surprise. "Thanks," was all he could say.
Lilliana nodded her head but quickly added her compromise. "Of course I will need to know later, now that I am to be staying here. Nana Jean is my family and I will make sure she is okay, and not taken advantage of." She didn't want for a response, she just kept on walking down the porch steps and into the field. Obviously not caring for this response back.
"Are you usually this bossy?" He calls out to her.
She stopped in her tracks, thinking about his question. No she wasn't normally this bossy. She didn't answer she just kept walking, ignoring his question.
Not wanting to ruin her white flats, she took them off to walk in the dirt. Her toes pressed into the field, creating footprints. She felt the thick hot breeze blow pass her again. The overwhelming, but calming smell of the lavenders danced in her nose again. She had a thought.
Lilliana turned to look at Bobby, back on the front porch. "Where did you say the lake was?" She blocked the blinding sun from her eyes by placing her right hand above her eyebrows.
He walked down the porch steps to go around the cottage to the back. Lilliana followed him both walking down the way to the refreshing lake.
"This should be interesting..." Muttered Bobby.