The Cell Phone Story
The Return

The Farewell
The Return
Thanks and Dedication

"Falling Into Grace"

Whatever never knew
That I could feel so good
Smile in your eyes
Whatever never knew
That I could walk through wood
I guess I never tried
A million years old, but just a little girl
Vibin' off the gong, rubbin' on the bowls
Make you float around
Make your lovin' strong
And when we get in the same place
At the same time
It is your grace
That I want to fall into right now

Two in the morning and she's wide awake, pacing an empty airport baggage claim. His flight was supposed to be in an hour ago, but Mother Nature was not on their side and let loose with a flurry of snow only moments before he was supposed to land.

According to the lovely skycap, Florida's first white Christmas is causing the planes to take extra time arriving. Needless to say, she's less than thrilled.

She presses her hands anxiously against the glass, palms flat and fingers spread. She's waited so long for the waiting to be over, but the massive silver plane in front of her has other plans. It moves towards the gate with the kind of speed that only a snail would be proud of, and she can hardly contain her frustration. Dammit, come ON!

She uses the spare time to curse the security team that refused her entrance to the terminals so she could meet him at the gate. She wants nothing more than to wrap herself up in him the moment he steps off the plane, but due to increased precautions, she is forced to wait with the luggage and the few family members of the other passengers on the red-eye from Cleveland to Tampa Bay.

She lets out a tiny yelp of excitement as the plane's door is thrown open, and the attendant who was kind enough to show her a place where she could watch the arrival laughs at her from a distance.

She doesn't care. Suddenly, she is mesmerized by the large, looming object that will bring her baby home to her. She wants to stroke the wings and raid the cabin for leftover packages of honey-roasted nuts in case he is sitting somewhere among the shells.

"You know, I've been on that thing, and it really isn't all that fascinating."

With a sharp intake of breath, she whirls around to face the bright blue eyes that the voice belongs to.

"Oh my God..."

He laughs. "Yeah, that would be me."

Thankfully, she catches him in a hug before the comment can register, squeezes the life and the loneliness out of him all at once. He closes his eyes tightly as his hands find her hair and waist, respectively. He inhales, and the scent of Herbal Essences and honeysuckle intoxicates him.

"God, I missed you."

She looks up at him slyly. "Isn't that usually my line?"

He shrugs. "So sue me. I was too tired to read my script on the plane."

"I think I can forgive you. But just this once."

"I'd be eternally grateful."

The two laugh lightly as the familiar banter begins, and his arm tugs her more tightly to him as they move towards the baggage claim.

"You know what sucks most about the return flight?"

She eyes him with more amusement than such a comment should incite. "What's that?"

"Waiting for the stupid luggage. I mean, hell, I just got home. Do these people really think that I want to wait half an hour while my one ridiculously large suitcase makes its rounds on the belt?"

She smiles. "No, but they know that your ego can afford the loss of rock star treatment by the end of the tour."
He frowns. "Are you suggesting that a tour inflates my ego?"

Her smile widens to an innocent grin. "Did I suggest? I meant to say it straight out."

"I can see that the missing of me doesn't necessarily inspire a sappy, loving honeymoon period upon my return."

Her countenance registers surprise. "Why, Nick! You sound disappointed!"

He sighs. "Well, you know...I was excited about coming home. I made plans."

He smirks as her ears perk up in interest. "These they involve a bedroom vacation?"



He shrugs, but his eyes light up as he catches sight of a large black TravelPro turning the corner. "Hey, that's my suitcase!"

"And I care because...?"

He pauses to wink at her before lugging the suitcase off the belt. "Because we can't begin our bedroom vacation until I've got the suitcase."


Laughing, he slings an arm around her shoulders and leads her towards the exit. "So, where'd you park the car?"

He watches expectantly as her brow furrows, and knows that inwardly, she is retracing her steps. Before the familiar phrase graces her lips, he begins to scan the parking lot for the familiar Toyota Camry. Surely enough, a flash of dark green catches his eye, and he begins to steer her towards the far right end of the airport.



"I can't remember."

He feigns sternness. "You didn't write it down?"

She winces, knowing that she should've, because she wants him now, wants him home, and needs the car to get there. "No..."

He sighs in false exasperation. "Sam, don't I always tell you to write it down?"


"But you don't, do you? You never remember."

The wince has become a grimace. "Sorry?"

He rolls his eyes. "Your loss. The longer it takes to find the car, the longer it's going to take us to get home."

Finally having acquired her defense for the evening, she looks up and prepares herself to fight. However, instead of a vast expanse of cars, she finds herself staring at the back of her Camry, and the words she was ready to hurl at her boyfriend disappear.

"You little shit! You knew where it was the whole time!"

He laughs loudly, hugging her before she can find courage enough to smack him. "Don't I always?"

She huffs, and he knows she's pouting. "I hate you."

He frowns. "Well, that's a pity."


"Because I love you."

Finally, she looks up into his sparkling blue eyes and smiles warmly. "I love you, too."

He grins. "Gosh, I'm glad you said that."

Her eyes narrow in suspicion. "Why?"

"Because if you hadn't, I wouldn't have gotten to do this..."

She inhales sharply as his lips find hers, soft, sweet and endearing as twilight falls around them; and she cannot help but think, as his nose brushes her cheek, that they have finally come full circle.

"Falling Into Grace"
lyrics and music by the Red Hot Chili Peppers