foreverwarrior: (Miranda (embarassed/shy))
[personal profile] foreverwarrior
Where: Eastern New Mexico
When: February 14, 1986
Alias: Elaine Brown


"Marry me."

I nearly choked on my mouthful of hashbrowns, and stared at him. "I... Uh... What?"

He smiled at my nearly being speechless. "I know this isn't the most romantic spot to ask and all, but you know the kids love you."

He was right about that. A Waffle House somewhere in the middle of eastern New Mexico wasn't exactly a ritzy restaurant in Paris. I stared at him and then looked over at the two kids swinging back and forth on the counter stools.

Truth was, I loved them, too. And they needed a mom. And I liked feeling needed.

I looked at him again, speechless. There he was, in a faded cotton shirt, his best jeans, the belt buckle he'd just won, and his brown sweat-stained hat on the seat next to him, upside down. I watched as he dug around in his pocket, not an easy thing to do, given the fit of the Wranglers. He pulled something out, but kept it in his hand so I wouldn't see it.

"This was my granma's," he said softly. "It's the only thing I have of hers. Normally, I'd wanta ask your daddy first, but since he ain't here..."

My throat closed on the lie. I'd tried to avoid him out on the circuit. I wanted time to myself, time to forget about the past ninety years. But he was always there, every rodeo, every town, every motel. That had lasted all of three months. The next three months were spent getting to know him and his two kids.

"Wade, I..." I tried to protest.

He then showed me the ring: a deep green emerald in a platinum setting. My heart stopped. I didn't realize he was serious.

"But... I... you don't know anything about me," I finally managed to say.

"The way I figure it, we've got the rest of our lives to sort all that out," he answered simply. "Besides, Elaine, no one's supposed to be alone. Even you."

The small restaurant turned into a massive watery blur as I realized he was right. So what if he was a mortal and I wasn't? We could make it work, couldn't we?

Two weeks later, we were standing in front of a Justice of the Peace in Albuquerque, and I hadn't known him for a full year. Funny how things work out.

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