Monday, November 2, 2009

Sessions 18 - Hangnail



My hopes just fell, and I can't see
The reason why, why there is blood on my sleeve
And all this time, I thought it mine
But it's not, it's yours...

soundtrack: Hangnail - Nickelback


Bay View - Harbor Place 10 PM


Cooper moved fluidly down Harbor Street each heavy footfall echoed the steady beating of his heart as the aroma of garlic wafted from the nearby Italian restaurant. Stopping briefly at the corner Cooper inhaled and took a hard left heading for the crosswalk.






It had been a long time since Cooper had been in this part of Bay View but it hadn't changed much. Making his way around the corner, he headed toward Lyon Street and stopped before he reached the intersection and considered what he was about to do. The kiss he shared with Stevie, that kiss had been a bucket of ice water thrown squarely in his face. It was not his intention to seduce her, never what he wanted. Acutely aware of what his actions had put in motion, he needed to deal with it hard and fast.


She was waiting at the bistro sipping a coffee and looking pensive. Cooper hesitated, maybe this wasn't the best idea after all, meeting her like this, and he considered leaving when she looked up and smiled at him warmly.


At that moment he realized that everything was going to change for all of them. His impulsive decision to quit touring, made in one heated moment when he had challenged McDermott, had not brought him closer to his wife or his family. It seemed to have had the opposite effect. Beth was distant and wary, Rayne openly confrontational. His twin sons - Nate glared and Eric avoided him. The band was coming apart; he was losing his closest friends. And now this thing with Stevie, an undeniable and ominous shift in their relationship from friendship to groping in the men’s room in a photographer’s studio.


Cooper glanced to his left and then made his way toward her more aware than ever of what he wanted, what he needed, and what was best. Stevie rose from her seat and reached out to embrace him, an embrace he did not return.

"Is everything all right?"


Whether it was concern or confusion on her face Cooper was not sure. His reply was as stiff as his posture, "Everything's fine. Walk with me."

Stevie hesitated, and then grabbed her bag hurrying to catch up. "Sure. Where are we going?"


Music from a dance club above them filled the streets as they walked in silence. Whatever conversation passed between them was nothing more than casual pleasantries, constant chatter mostly from Stevie, awkward and uncomfortable. They moved further down the street through people, past myriad shops and closer to the wharf until Stevie stopped short and grabbed Cooper's arm.


"This is ridiculous," she snapped. "Don't put what happened at the photo shoot all on me Cooper. You were in the moment as much as I was. So if you have something to say about that, just say it but do not pretend it didn't mean something." She stood arms folded and waited.


Cooper pulled her toward a corner of the patio before responding. "We crossed a line Stevie, it never should have happened. What the hell were you thinking anyway, that I was going to take you right there in the men's room? If I hadn't pushed you away..." Cooper looked away, irritation bordering on anger lacing his words.


“If you hadn't pushed me away, you just might have. You wanted it at that moment as much as I did," Stevie's voice was low and steady. "Did you ever consider what would have happened between us if I had come for you when you left Julia for good?"


Agitated, Cooper paced back and forth and then leveled his gaze on her. When had this happened? Had Stevie been thinking about ‘what if’ for all these years? He hadn’t suspected it, always assumed she understood that the flirtation was nothing more than that. He didn’t want to hurt her, but this had gone past flirtation into something he didn't want to deal with.


Releasing an exasperated breath, Cooper pulled her toward him and firmly held her shoulders, and then dropped his hands to his side. “Stevie, I’m going to be honest; I never considered it, never thought about going back to you, and it wouldn’t have gotten you anywhere if you’d come after me. If I’d wanted you, I would have done something about it. Listen to me - I take responsibility for behaving like an ass, giving you the impression I wanted more than friendship, and that damned ‘moment’ in the men’s room, doesn’t matter how much I might have wanted to take you, that was not going to happen. I have the woman I want, and she gives me what I need, everything I need. I don’t need you and I don’t love you.”


Stevie held his gaze for several moments. "I don't believe you Cooper. Beth isn't equipped to understand this lifestyle, and that is exactly why you gave up something that makes you thrive. What you needed was someone who would have fought hard to make you see that. Maybe you need to think about that."


His mouth tightened as he stared down at her. The slam pissed him off. Equipped? Of all people, Stevie should realize how fucked up he’d been when he’d split with Julia, and how far he’d come, and he hadn’t made it on his own. “I don’t know where you get the idea that she doesn’t understand what she’s dealing with. She let me know what she thought about my decision – she’s capable of making her point – but it was my decision. I’m going to make this very clear - no one, not you or anyone else, is in any position to tell me who I should have married or what I need.”

Stevie dropped her gaze, her hands clenched. Cooper expected her to come back at him, she always did, but not this time. She looked down and said nothing.

Cooper abruptly turned. "I said what I came to say. I'm taking you back to the bistro."


They walked back in silence until they reached Lyon Street again. Cooper stopped, took Stevie's arm and turned her toward him. "I don’t need you to fix me anymore, Stevie. Whatever issues I have, I’ll work those out with my wife. But you and I...this ends right now." He shook his head, brushing away any regret, and swept cold, hard eyes back to her. "Goodbye Stevie."



Bay View - Holloway Residence


Shaun finished cleaning the kitchen and stood at the sink rinsing his hands when he saw her reflection in the window. Without looking up he greeted her. "You're home late. Do you want something to eat?"


Stevie walked silently to the kitchen table and sank into a chair. "I'm not hungry, thanks. Is Dev asleep?"

Walking over to her, he placed his hands on her shoulders, bent down and kissed her head and replied, "Yeah, he's asleep. You're tense baby; come on, get up and I'll give you a massage." As he began kneading her shoulders Shaun idly asked, "So where've you been?"


Shaun felt her tighten again as she rose and turned to face him. "I met Coop downtown; he wanted to talk."

Struggling to keep his face neutral Shaun stepped back and placed his hands on his hips. "Is that so...and you neglected to tell me this before?"


"Something happened..." she started.

"No shit!" Anger in his voice slowly began to make its way to his face. Whatever the something was, he’d been anticipating it, holding off saying anything to Cooper about it, figuring she would listen to him when he asked her to stay away from him. And that, he thought, watching her avoid looking at him, that had been a mistake.


"Shaun just let me explain before you go assuming the worst." He followed her to the living room and waited, silent and angry, for her to continue.

Stevie let out a breath and went right into it. "The other day, at the photo shoot, things got a little out of hand. Cooper lost it, stormed off, and I followed him." She hesitated briefly and then finished, "I kissed him, Shaun. It didn't go any further than the kiss. We...he broke it off. I wish I could say it didn't mean anything to me but I can't."


Shaun stood with his back to the stairwell and held himself still for a moment, a long moment. The damned dishwasher cut in behind him and churned, churned like his stomach. Cooper lost it and stormed off. When didn’t he lose it? His wife had come onto Coop because he stomped around looking unhappy and waiting for Stevie to fix it for him, that’s what he’d done. That’s what he always did. Coop got mad or his wife fucked up or some kind of shit happened, and there was Stevie, picking up the pieces for him, and it looked like she wanted to keep doing it.

His voice eerily quiet, Shaun asked, "So this big talk you had...are you two running off into the sunset? Is that what this is about?"


Stevie hung her head and replied softly, "No. He ended it, the friendship, all of it. I made a terrible, terrible mistake. I'm sorry Shaun, I never meant to hurt you and I do love you, I just..." She stopped mid-sentence as Shaun turned his back on her and ran his hands through his hair.


I just…it was always I just with Cooper. Whatever Cooper needed and whatever Cooper wanted but the deal was, Cooper didn’t need shit. Cooper knew exactly what he was doing. His face was hard, his eyes cold as ice, "I hope that kiss was worth the price Stevie, worth your marriage, your family. But it sure wasn't worth it to Coop."

"Shaun, I'm so sorry," she pleaded, "we can work this out. I swear I will make this up to you, make things right again."


"I can't even look at you right now. Would you have run off with him if you had the chance? You know what; I don't even want to know the answer to that. I've had it. I'm out of here."

"Shaun, please..."


He'd heard enough, and had enough. Without looking back, he held his hand up to stop her, pushed open the door and walked away.

--------------------

NEXT CHAPTER: Chameleon Chapter 4

51 comments:

Azzy said...

Go Cooper! You tell her man! poor Shaun tho, i feel for they guy, it must not be fun to hear something like that. And Stevie needs to straighten out her priorities.

Dinuriel said...

Poor Shaun. Poor, poor Shaun. And their poor child :(

At least Cooper put an end to it before it got too far, though. Stevie needs to do some serious soul-searching.

S.B. said...

Dinuriel, yes at least Coop finally did, although he let it go on way way too long.

Shaun's a big boy; he'll survive. But it was a hard thing to come up against.

thank you!!

S.B. said...

I want to add something else, since I've been so hard on Stevie. I do understand what it's like to be in love with the wrong person, to know them long and thoroughly enough to be sure of it, but it's not returned. Coop did not make it easy on Stevie by flirting with her.

~Drew said...

My respect for Cooper was just kicked up a notch, well done, man. Nip that sucker in the bud. He has more inner strength than his own wife in a similar situation.

Love the comparison of the churning dishwasher and Shaun' stomach.
And Shaun, with his low tolerance for bullshit, has had enough, Stevie really screwed up here. Do I feel sorry for her? A little, but not much.
Shaun pretty much nailed it.

Great update, great interactions between the characters, deeply felt.

S.B. said...

Thanks Drew! Yeah I have to reach hard for it to find some sympathy for Stevie.

Shaun's an impressive guy. Glad he walked out on her.

There is one critical difference between Stevie and Coop and Beth and Ryan. Coop didn't bother to even think about Stevie once he walked away from that. Never any question about being in love with her. That wasn't the case with B and R.

and dishwashers drive me nuts...

thank you so much from both of us!!

Mao said...

Poor Shaun, what a crappy situation. :( I figured he wouldn't just stand around and be the consolation prize. No one should. As much as it sucks, Stevie brought this on herself and she would have run off with Cooper if he wanted to.

What Cooper did was good, but this should be a bigger lesson. He needs to remove his head from his anus and pay attention to more than just himself. It wasn't that hard to see what was going on and other folks noticed it, too. Cooper was either in denial or just completely ignorant, but it doesn't make it right.

I'm seriously wondering where this is going next!

S.B. said...

Mao, thank you. I was hoping somebody would point that out. Coop indulged himself, paid no attention to what people were saying and took the position that it was their problem.

and yeah I think Stevie would have gone in a heartbeat if Cooper said let's go.

thank you!!

Mizzgin03 said...

I'm in Stevie's shoes right now! It's really hard to let go when you are receiving mixed signals! Anywho loved it and I shed a tear for poor Shaun......it's just a sucky situation all around!

S.B. said...

Hi Missgin03! Yeah, it is awful to fight attachment to someone when you're getting mixed signals. The old intermittent reinforcement thing - it's very very powerful. You could say Stevie should have known better because she knows Cooper, but they do have history.

It is a sucky situation. Shaun got slammed.

Thank you so much for reading and leaving us a comment!

Gayl said...

Thank you all so much for the comments! I hope you won't mind a blanket response.

Going to play devil's advocate here (and not because I nearly killed her - twice). I believe Stevie's love for Shaun is much stronger than it appears. I think she got caught up in the past, the flirtation and the possibilities. She made a terrible terrible mistake, this was not her finest hour by any means and yes, she has a great deal of love for Cooper. But I do believe, at the end of the day, she loves Shaun more and she is going to figure that out.

And while Shaun is fairly laid back, he isn't going to be anyone's fool. His walking out was absolutely in character. Is this the end for them? I don't know. Do I think she would have run off with Cooper? Well first of all that would never have happened from Cooper's standpoint because he is extremely in love with his wife but no, I don't think she would have.

Do I blame Cooper for Stevie's downfall? Absolutely not. He is right that she should have seen it for what it was. Why Stevie decided to take it seriously this time we will never know. She is a good person who made a seriously bad choice. There is a lot of history between them. Do I think they can rebuild their friendship? Probably not which is too bad.

I have to add that I am thrilled when we can paint our characters in a true light. They aren't perfect, they make mistakes, bad choices and go on. Once in awhile it is great to really shake things up.

thank you all again for continuing to read our work and commenting. It is very much appreciated and always brings up good points to consider and build on. You guys rock!

Muzegoddess said...

Do you hear that??? That is the sound of me exhaling heavily (though I may not be breathing easy for long).

It is about damn time Cooper got his head out of the sand, looked at what he was doing and the effect it was having and corrected it accordingly. Did it really have to take a kiss from another woman to get him to see it?? I'm very happy it didn't take any more than that.

He was very clear with Stevie and he needed to be. Leaving a situation like that cloudy is asking for trouble. He is officially off of my naughty list for now.

I can also stop throwing darts at Stevie. She's hurt herself here and I can see that she really does have feelings for Cooper, but she let the past and the what ifs cloud her judgement. She's got a great, georgeous man at home and I hope she can fix things with him.

Now comes the aftermath. Stevie has to deal with Shaun and Coop has to deal with Beth (does he even know she's pregnant yet?). I know that Beth understands him in a way that no one else does, but there is only so much a person can take. Fingers crossed that they deal with this and refrain from sweeping it under the rug.

As always, the writing and pictures are positively wonderful.

S.B. said...

Hey Muzegoddess!!

yeah it is about time Cooper saw it, but he did. It took what it took and that was, from his standpoint, totally unexpected behavior from Stevie.

Stevie has some work ahead of her. The past she had with Cooper really was never resolved, but it sure as hell is now. Yeah we can stop throwing darts at her since she's impaled herself with one.

Does Cooper know his wife is pregnant? He doesn't act like he does. Is she going to be waiting at home with dinner and his slippers? Probably not. But it will be hard for her to throw stones since she was the first one to break the glass. This time I doubt it's going to be swept under the rug though.

Thank you so much - I always look forward to hearing what you think. You have such a clear view; you give us so much to think about. Thank you!!

Anonymous said...

incredible as always!
I really need to start up in account or something so I can use a username other than anonymous.

I'm so glad Cooper made the right choice and ended it before it got much worse. I feel incredibly sad for Stevie though..maybe because we share a name..or maybe because we've dealt with similar experiences or maybe just because I plain old like her character. She made a really stupid choice and I hope that someday she can fix things with shaun because quite frankly I find him ten times hotter than cooper. lol

Gayl said...

*gasp*

thank you anonymous...Cooper did the right thing even if it ended up ruining a friendship and hurting someone. I like Stevie as well, she did a really dumb thing that I don't think she can even justify but she is a survivor.

and...is this who i think it is???

S@ndy said...

:( I feel so sorry for Shaun...

And somehow I'm sorry for Stevie too, she was daydreaming of the past, of what it could had been... she neglected what she had, what was really hers to keep.. she made a bad move and sadly the piece she moved broke the balance and now everything is falling apart,
trust is like glass once it breaks is so hard to keep it together, you can always mend it but the crack will always be there...

She really needs to think of what happened... it wasn't worth... now her friendship with Cooper is over and her marriage with Shaun is also over...

so sad... I'm glad Shaun walked away... if she really loves him (I think she does) she will try to get him back, show him that he is worth fighting for.

Cooper, I don't really know what to say about him.

Awesome chapter!

S.B. said...

S@ndy...oh come on, you can say what you think about Cooper! You're not shy!

Gayl is right about Stevie, she's a survivor. She made a stupid choice, but she does really care about Coop.

Shaun had to walk away - second best is not acceptable.

Trust is like glass. It is hard to mend it once it's broken, but it can be done.

thank you so much!!!

S@ndy said...

:P

I just don't know about Cooper...

Alright, he made the right move. it was about time, seriously. I'm glad he didn't do anything more stupid.

I'm just sad for Stevie, but we all get what we sow, she got herself into that mess...so it is not Cooper's fault...
well it is his fault somehow, he was playing with fire and he knew it, how easy of him to say, ''hey you are crazy, that wasn't happening, you didn't mean anything to me, I never thought of it!!!'' We all saw it Cooper, you were flirting with her!!! GRRR that makes me angry... lol but OK I do like him, and hopefully that right move will be the first of many and then I will once again fall in love with him!

I'm just wondering what will happen now with him, with the band with Stevie, is Stevie quitting he band? is Shaun quitting the band?

Is Cooper telling Beth about what happened? Is he going to go back to touring...

But yeah, he did the right thing... to bad it took him to long and too bad he had to end such a wonderful friendship... but oh well...
that's how life is...

mending glass is such a hard job, but it can definitely be done :D and if the right tools are used, maybe it would even look better than before it broke, :P lol

Again Awesome Chapter.

Phoenix said...

Read it this morning and was almost late for work! So I had to reread when I got home from work and I still feel the same way...

It's about TIME COOP!!! Not saying what you did was right but at least you finally opened your eyes a smidgen and saw beyond yourself. How long that will last is anyone's guess! And I also think you should tell Beth what happened. Everyone is gonna wonder why Stevie and Shaun are separated and better she know what happened now than to be left wondering. That'll really back fire!

Stevie...you can't recapture the past! It's over and done with. You're married! He's married! You have families! *shakes head* I sort of feel sorry for her but not that much since she brought it on herself since Shaun JUST spoke with her! Seriously? SERIOUSLY!! Gah!!

Shaun!! ♥ Finally someone who is acting like an adult. Why did Stevie think he was going to be okay with her kissing Coop is beyond me and I hope he makes her work to win him back...if they get back together at all.

Wonderfully written. I loved it!

Whymustallthegoodonesbetaken said...

Well Gayl I'm not sure who you think it is but chances are its not..I'm just me (formerly known as anonymous.) A big fan of your guys' work and an aspiring writer though I haven't yet written anything worth publishing on here.

Gayl said...

LOL! Well even though you aren't who I thought we are thrilled to have you reading and commenting! Hopefully we will see some of your work soon!

Sinclair said...

O Stevie...I feel for her cause shes that person who fell for what she couldnt have and held on to it. I do pity her for allowing the delusions of more than friendship to play in her mind. But I have to wonder why Cooper gets to play hard ball when he said himself he allowed it to go further.

MAJORRRRRR PROPS!!! for Shaun. Finally someone with a clear mind. Its been so long since someone has been able to look at things for what they really are. Shaun needs to spread the truth alot more. Especially since hes the only one who isnt out of his mind. Yay for sane characters!

Gayl said...

S@ndy: this was tough on pretty much everyone. Even if it took Stevie in his face to get him to open his eyes, I think Coop has learned something valuable. Thanks so much!

Phoenix: I think Stevie made some terrible choices and used extremely bad judgment. She is a strong woman though and I think she will fight to get her guy back. Shaun is such a level headed guy, it made sense for him to call BS on her. Thanks!

Sinclair: Yes, Stevie got caught up in the past big time, a terrible thing for her to have done. She is usually much more sensible than this. But Shaun...he has always been very laid back, easy going and solid, and always there for her. But there was no way he was going to stick around after what just happened. Thanks so much for reading!

Veron said...

O_O SHE TOLD SHAUN?!?!

Steeeeevie! But you know what, I knew she would do something like that. I knew the kiss would just stir everything up again and she would be silly about it! And I feel like Shaun had been waiting for this, kind of. Oh I feel so bad for him.

And of course I'm in the minority but I could helicopter kick Cooper in the throat right now. Okay, great. Take responsibility. Admit that it was wrong. Admit that it was a moment. Admit you love her and you'll stop leading things on. BUT DON'T YOU STAND THERE AND...

...

...

I don't know. Maybe he handled it the best way possible. And I'm just biased because I simply adore Stevie.

But at the same time, what could have happened? Either way, her relationship with Shaun was coming to an end. Which does suck way more than Stevie being put off by Cooper.

This was awesome as usual, ladies!

Veron said...

*don't love her.

That jerk.

Gayl said...

Hey Veron. Yes she told Shaun. Better to be up front about it than not. The truth was bound to come out anyway. And that is just the way she is.

I adore her as well...and to think I nearly killed her twice! Thanks Veron!

I should also point out that neither Shaun nor Stevie will be quitting the band. That won't happen. As for the rest, we just have to wait and see.

goodbye_sun said...

Well I have to admire Stevie for being up front with Shaun about what happened, but I could also throttle her for not trying to sound a bit more sorry for what happened. Its almost like she was after the sympathetic ear of a friend rather than trying to be honest to her husband. As much as I like them together, he doesn't deserve to be in a relationship when he is that low done on the totem pole.

And is the finally the kick in the ass Cooper needed to sort himself out? Good for him, but as I thought, Stevie is paying the price for it.

S.B. said...

Thanks everybody - fascinating comments!

Sinclair: LOL Cooper gets to play hardball because he can. And he can be pretty cold when he wants to be. Shaun's insight into the relationship made a counterpoint to Cooper's perspective, or it was intended to work that way. Shaun is a very different person than Coop, not as volatile or as self indulgent, but he's not the star Cooper is either.

Stevie did hang on to that delusion/illusion, but she had help doing it. Although he didn’t intend it, Cooper encouraged her.

thank you so much!

S.B. said...

Phoenix: Hi there! Oh I think Cooper will have to say something about it. It's going to come out, and his relationship with Stevie has NOT gone unnoticed. She wasn't a casual bystander in his life. He’ll do the right thing. Whether or not there are further repercussions, wait and see LOL.

Thank you so much!

S.B. said...

Hi Whymust...and I LOVE that user name!

It is sad that Stevie could not give up or get past what she felt for Cooper. I doubt she's over it yet either. Shaun absolutely did the right thing.

The Shaun and Stevie and Cooper situation makes an interesting parallel and contrast to the Cooper and Beth and Ryan triangle. Cooper did not react the same way - he didn't walk out. Would it have been better if he had? But then the relationships are not identical. Coop was not waiting around for Stevie to leave Shaun so they could get together, and Ryan was ready to go for it.

thank you so much for reading and commenting. It means a great deal to us to get feedback.

S.B. said...

Goodbye_Sun, you're right. Stevie's confession does sound like the kind of thing you'd make to a BF, looking for sympathy and advice. She did follow up with an apology, not one Shaun was willing to accept. Telling your guy you made out with another man and you're sorry and it won't happen again is one thing, but telling him it meant something and you just don't know if you can get past it is the kiss of death.

But she is honest. She has guts.

S.B. said...

Veron!
I’m not as crazy about Stevie LOL!

In a way she seemed to feel she had some kind of proprietary relationship with Coop – she knew best what he needed and nobody better get in her way while she made sure he got it. Probably because she met him when he did desperately need her, and she wanted to take care of him because she’s a good person. He’s way past needing that though, and the relationship became enabling instead of supportive.

Awwww…Cooper is Cooper. I don’t think you’re in the minority. He needed a good kick. He didn’t see this clearly because he didn’t want to see it – it was comfortable and fun and Stevie made him feel good. Unfortunately, surrounding yourself with people who see things only from your perspective and tell you there there, you’re right and everybody else is wrong is dangerous. He sees it now. I think he handled it the best way he could. Stevie needed to get it right between the eyes – I don’t need you and I don’t love you and leave me alone. Even after he tried to say it, she was still arguing with him about it. Cooper's not a bad guy, he just tends to see what he wants to see.

Thank you - it's always so great to read your comments!

S.B. said...

Thought I would mention this since there have been a couple of questions about the band.

Stevie and Shaun are not in Cooper's band, Mercury Rising. They never have been.

Mercury Rising: Cooper, Heydon Mitchell; Daniel Whitney; Aiden O'Malley

Storm Warning: Shaun and Stevie; Tyler Romero

Whymustallthegoodonesbetaken said...

Ha I love my name I came up with too! lol

I've been a reader for a while and even made comments a few times but I didn't have an account. Finally I got tired of being "anonymous" and so after fighting the name thing I ended up with the one I have now. It could mean a lot of different things too. lol

I'm looking forward to the next post! Seeings as how my life has been extremely lame and depressing lately, your posts are something I look forward to even more!

S.B. said...

LOL WhyM yeah the name COULD mean a lot of different things!

We are very glad you're here. Consider it a participatory experience. We take reader comments very seriously and frequently use the feedback to tweak things, include things, fill in holes.

We're both working on updates for two of the companion works since they eventually tie in with Sessions, one way or another. I might have something ready to go for Passages tomorrow, the day after at the latest.

We hope we can entertain you - both of us are familiar with depressing stuff. And let us know if you post something yourself!

cheripye said...

I gotta give it to Stevie being forward and honest with Shaun. Although I think he is over reacting just a Teeny bit... Hopefully he will cool down eventually and want to work things out with her. It was after all only a kiss. Although that was a good question, would she have run off??? Somehow I think she would have. She was trying awfully hard to keep him. Still it was what was needed.

And Go Coop, but this step away from the limelight is certainly taking its toll. Come on now, Beth and Coop have got to get it together, they have too. And Stevie and Shaun too!!!

Intense, exhilerahting and altogether breathless work here ladies. Plus I love the screens. 80) EXCELLENT READ!

Gayl said...

Goodbye_sun: Stevie is paying the price for it definitely. Not sure that this will affect Coop at all other than losing a good friend which I am sure he regrets right along with his hand in the misunderstanding. But you definitely predicted it!

Cherie: Stevie would never try to lie or hide something like this. It always has a way of coming out. I don't know if I would say it was just a kiss, it was pretty passionate but reacting any way other than he did might have given the impression the door was still open. If you think back to when Beth cut Ryan off, it isn't that much different.

We'll see what happens with Shaun and Stevie.

xtinabobina said...

The shots in this were beyond amazing Gayl!!

There's so much pain filtering through the lives
of everyone. Let's hope Cooper gets his act
together and I know his wife will be hurt if he
tells her about Stevie.

As for Stevie..I adore her but she had this one
coming.

Gayl said...

thanks xtina! I think Coop will get his act together pretty fast. But I do think he will tell his wife what happened, same reason Stevie told Shaun, someone is bound to say something. Honestly I think Coop's wife will be relieved to know he has come to his senses. As for everything else, we just have to wait and see!

Lachesis said...

I think I've said this before, but you two have the richest, most extensive and realistic world. I just love it. It always looks so beautiful. Especially to one who lives in a blue collar northern mid-western town. :D

Poor Shaun, I hope he finds a better life without her. He deserves it. Dang, Stevie has a serious hangup she's going to have to figure out how to live with because by now she should have figured out, even before Cooper spelled it out for her, that she can never compete with Beth, no one can. :/

Nothing like throwing your life, and the future of your child away on a pipe dream.

Penelope said...

Ouch! Ok, she kissed another man that she has had a thing for, for like the past 15 or 20 years but is that a deal-breaker? Marriage over?

Naturally, Coop did the right thing in breaking it off but I feel like he's still too wrapped up in himself and his drama with his career and his friends while his family is still falling apart at home. What a mess!

S.B. said...

Lachesis, I've been remiss in thanking you for your comment. I got distracted - we both love hearing your take on what we write so I'm so sorry!

I think our world is a character all on its own!

I'm betting Shaun and Stevie make it up. She did have to realize that Coop flirts outrageously and doesn't mean it, but I suppose this was her opportunity to find out what was there. It wasn't what she hoped for.

Thank you again!!

S.B. said...

Hi Penelope!

I think it was less a kiss than the fact that Shaun was uncomfortable, told her how he felt, asked her to stop it, and she went right ahead and did it anyway. Like who cares what you feel.

Cooper is definitely wrapped up in his career, what he wants, what he's missing, and he still doesn't see the larger picture.

Thank you so much, from both of us, for taking the time to read and leave us a comment!

Emily said...

*pokes head out from her now comfortable black hole* LOL.

Okay, first off...yay Coop! You came through for me man, very pleased with his decision here and although it sounded pretty harsh, it was what she needed to hear, especially if he meant it. Which I believe he did.

Shaun, poor guy. He reacted about like I would I believe. He's had enough and understandably so.

Some of those shots where Coop and Stevie were talking were simply beautiful. Something about the lighting and angles, they really went to a whole new level, just gorgeous.

Fab update you guys, the drama never disappoints! Bravo!

Emily said...

Okay, so this is what I get for not reading through the comments before making my own. I had a realization about getting the mixed signals and endless flirting, had someone do that to me for almost 2 years and I was stupidly hooked again and again, every time. And then when something actually happened, very similar to Stevie & Coop (although I was NOT married!) it went about like thier conversation did. So I can totally feel sympathy for her now that I think about it. But like I said, I wasn't married and neither was he, so it's just a tiny sympathy. :)

Gayl said...

Emily, thank you! Yes I think Stevie and Cooper both got caught up in something that wasn't what it seemed. Cooper's actions and Stevie's and Shaun's reactions I think or I guess I hope were real.

I feel bad for Shaun and Stevie both. They had a good thing going and now they are both hurting.

Gayl said...

And I meant to say thank you so much about the shots! I try so hard to get it right so it is good to know I may have succeeded!

Colliegirl said...

I am glad that Cooper did the right thing by breaking it off with her. Although, it didn't help that he encouraged her by carrying on that light flirtation with her. Their emotions were bound to get tangled up in some way.

Poor Shaun. I hated to see him hurt like this. He's been such a great guy, so kind and understanding, and so very supportive of her - right from the start. He must have known what he might be in for when he asked her to marry him. She had a lot of emotional scars that she was packing, if I recall correctly. I can't believe that he would just so easily give up on her. Not now, without a fight. That would be like admitting he is second best. And we know that he's not!

I'm hoping that they can work it out. Shaun is such a gorgeous sweet guy, I find it difficult to believe that she would even give Coop a second thought. That girl must be nuts! Lol! : D

Gayl said...

Hi Colliegirl! Thanks so much for stopping by and reading! Cooper really didn't think his "harmless flirtation" was going to be taken seriously by Stevie. Once he realized what happened he knew he had to fix it, cut it off hard and fast just like Beth did with Ryan.

It's interesting that you bring up Shaun and Stevie getting married. Actually she asked him. Shaun is angry. He warned her what was happening and asked her to leave it alone. I don't think he will give up but he isn't going to be second fiddle either.

Colliegirl said...

Lol! All this time, I thought it was him that had asked her! I must have forgot or missed it. My mistake then. No wonder he was really hurt and angry. The poor guy! I still say she's nuts. Look at him; he's gorgeous! I love those blue eyes! I'm surprised there hasn't been a long line of girls everywhere vying for his attention! Stevie better watch out, they probably are there - just waiting for the right opportunity! Lol! ; )

Maybe that's what Stevie needs - a good dose of old-fashioned jealousy, so she can find out what it feels like to be treated like that! : )

Gayl said...

LOL no Colliegirl it was many many chapters ago...HERE

Shaun wanted to ask but felt it wouldn't be what she wanted. He was willing to make the family work with or without marriage.

And believe me, there are hearts fluttering in the background for Shaun, he is a total hottie and his nature makes him even more appealing. We'll see if we can cook up some jealousy for her!