"Happy new year!"
"Happy new year!" I also wished and clinked glasses with Seth, before I took a sip from my glass of sparkling wine. He wrapped his arm around my waist and pulled me so close that our lips met for a kiss. It was New Year's Eve, the last day of the year that we celebrated with his parents. Janet and Keith had left a day before, because they wanted to celebrate with their friends in L.A. So we kept it at us and the four of us welcomed the new year together.
"We wish you a happy new year!" Kate and George said at the same time and clinked glasses with us. "May all your wishes for this year come true!"
"Thanks!" I cuddled up to Seth and looked at my wedding ring we had only picked up a few hours ago from the jeweler. He now also had his own ring. 'Forever Love' was engraved on the inner side and I hoped our marriage would really last forever. Warren and Lucy had called a day before already, because on the Fidschis the new year had begun earlier.
"Let's go outside and fire some rockets," George suggested. "I kept it all in the shelter. But we should take flashlights with us, because it's pretty dark outside."
Hastily we all got into thick jackets and boots and then went outside into the icy coldness. George's shelter, where he also kept wood for the fireplace, was in the middle of the forest. All the way there Seth was holding my hand and I remembered our trips and the happenings, before we had become a couple. We arrived at the shelter and George and Seth went inside to get the fireworks they then placed in the snow.
Kate sighed melancholy. "I wish Lucy and Warren were here now. But of course I'm also glad that they're so happy now and can enjoy their honeymoon together."
I looked at her thoughtfully. It was a new experience for me as well to celebrate without Lucy. But in the future things would be different anyway. "I'd love to come back for next Christmas," I blurted.
Kate put her arm around my shoulder. "Well, I really hope you will," she said smirking. "And for the following years as well of course." She grinned sheepishly. "I don't want to urge you, but of course George and I would like to celebrate with our grandchildren someday."
I felt my stomach clenching. Kate was already dreaming about grandchildren and I didn't even know if I even wanted kids. Did Seth want some? I knew Lucy did want at least three kids. A wish she shared with Warren. But I hadn't even talked about that topic with Seth. Because every time we were intimate with each other, he insisted on condoms, so I assumed that he wasn't too keen on becoming a father already. I was distracted from my contemplative thoughts, when George let off the first rocket into the sky. Seth fired the next one and then it was George's turn again. Fascinated I stared up at the play of colors in the starlit sky and suddenly felt Seth's arm around my waist.
"Make a wish," he said quietly and then kissed me.
I had never heard that you're supposed to make a wish during a firework; that was rather something you do with shooting stars, but I did it anyway.
"Will you tell me what you wished for?" Seth asked curiously.
I shook my head. "The wish won't come true then," I gave back with a smile. And I absolutely wanted it to come true. Because I had wished for Seth and I being this happy forever, just like right in this moment. I really wished that I could capture and preserve this moment forever. The soft breeze blew away the smoke the rockets had caused and we made our way back home. It was our last night at the house of Seth's parents, before we would go back to L.A. the next morning.
The time until the departure passed far too fast and when we eventually put our suitcases into Seth's car and said goodbye to Kate and George, I couldn't hold back my tears any longer. Sobbing I embraced my parents-in-law and promised them that we would call soon. Kate had told me that she and George would drive back to Bakersfield within the next days, where they lived and had a house. They would come back to Big Bear Lake not until July to spend their summer break there.
"You really need to come," Kate said and hugged me a last time. "It's so beautiful here during the summer months. You can go swimming, fishing, mountain biking and hiking. There's the right spare time activities for everyone."
"Mom, you sound like a walking talking commercial," Seth said and rolled his eyes. "I know all that."
"That piece of information was meant for Natalie," Kate said reproachfully. "Like I said, we really hope that you'll come visit here again."
"Now let them go already," George interfered and embraced me as a goodbye. "Take care, Natalie. We'll stay in touch."
"We would also like if you'd visit us at home some time," Kate quickly threw in and looked at her son with a dispraising look. "You do still know where that is, don't you?"
I quickly looked to Seth, who grinned sheepishly. Just like me, he probably didn't visit his parents all that often either. "We'll be glad to come by sometime," I said before him.
"We really need to go now. Mom… Dad…," Seth embraced his parents once more as well and then got into his car.
We had just left the place, when I turned to him. "How often do you see your parents a year?"
"Two to three times," he gave back shortly. "I know they would like it to be more often. But with work and all the other stuff I often don't find the time to drive to Bakersfield."
"Rather say you're not into family visits that much," I said smirking.
"Yeah, that too." Seth cast me a side look and grinned. "Although I don't wanna miss our time together during Christmas. I left early the past years and my parents celebrated New Year's Eve with friends."
"Well, you'll need to take a little time for family visits during the next days," I said with a serious face.
"Because I wanna introduce you to my parents," I gave back shortly. "In fact it's at two different locations. They got divorced."
"Oh man, I totally forgot that." Seth sighed.
I had to smirk about his reaction. "You see this year the things go a little different than the years before. We can't postpone that any longer."
"Where do your parents live?" he wanted to know.
"My mom lives in Pasadena, my dad in Santa Barbara," I informed him.
"And where do you wanna go first?"
"What… now?" I exclaimed baffled. "You wanna drive to them right now?"
Seth nodded. "You said it yourself, important things shouldn't be delayed." He grinned a little. "Scared?"
Of course I was excited and maybe even a little scared. Because after all my parents didn't know about my wedding yet. I took a deep breath. "Well then, let's get it over with." I gave Seth my father's address, which he instantly typed into his satnav.
"Then let's drive to Santa Barbara to your dad first and on the way back we'll visit your mom!" Seth said cheerfully, while he moved the car onto the freeway.
I leaned back, closed my eyes and drove towards an uncertain future with him.
Author's note: Thanks for reading and all the reviews! If you want to know what the future will bring for Seth and Natalie please read the sequel: 'Lost Dreams', you can find in my profile