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02 July 2015 @ 11:00 pm
 
I wrote something. It's the start of original fiction.


“Hey, watch it!” The words fell out of her mouth and she pulled her grocery cart to a complete stop. The kid waved sheepishly at her as he darted around her, and further down the aisle.

Piper, the woman in question, sighed as she ran a hand through her hair. It had slipped out of the bun and fell in messy blonde curls around her shoulders. It had been a long day, and the last thing she wanted to be doing was grocery shopping. Not when she still had a pile of work to finish when she got home, and no time to finish it. Sometimes she wished she could just hire someone to do it all for her. File her paperwork, grocery shop, and then actually cook and prepare the meals. That would give her the proper time to devote to Levi, her six-year-old son; who she never got to see, thanks to her soon-to-be-ex fiancé, and his crusade for full custody. The thought of Levi made her smile, and she began pushing her cart down the aisle again, only stopping long enough to study food items as she walked. Nothing went into the cart.

Grocery shopping, she decided, just wasn’t as much fun without Levi’s cries of ‘I want this! And that! Or that!’ about everything in sight.

“Wow, Piper Easton, as we live and breathe.”

The familiar voice had Piper turning, and a bright smile splashed across her face, as she darted forwards, throwing her arms around the woman in a bear of a hug. A cough drew Piper towards the woman’s companion, and she gave him an as equally excited greeting.

“Madeline! Asher! I haven’t seen you two in like what…” Piper trailed off, thinking back. “Four years?”

“More like five, almost six. But who’s counting?” Asher asked, drily. The realization of not seeing her friends in almost six years was shocking, but as she quickly thought about it, Piper realized it was true. It was almost six years ago when she’d first become involved with Harris & Brown as an intern. Now, years later, she was their best and finest paralegal.

“We really lost touch,” Piper realized, speaking her thoughts out loud. “I’m a terrible friend.” Asher opened his mouth to speak, but Madeline nudged him hard with her elbow. Piper didn’t notice, too busy drinking in the sight of her (former?) best friends.

“You had a lot to do at H&B, we understand,” Madeline told her friend, and Piper had to hug her again. “Now that we are reunited, we should definitely start hanging out again. I know I’ve missed you.” They both looked at Asher, who nodded in agreement, and he threw an arm around them both.

“Mads knows how much I’ve pined for you, Piper.” The words sounded weird, almost hollow, and not like the joke they were meant as. Piper gave him a confused glance, but Asher didn’t expand on his words, as he let them go.

“Sisters do know best,” Madeline agreed, and the look she gave Asher wasn’t confused, just calculating. Piper would have to remember to ask her about it later.
“So, where’s Prince William?”

Piper made a face. “Please don’t call him that,” she said, reflexively. “But you know what,” Piper decided, as an afterthought, “Call him whatever you like. He and I are done.”

“No way,” Asher’s mouth hung open, gawking at her.

“What he said,” Madeline’s eyes were wide. “I don’t think we heard you right.”

Piper rolled her eyes, “No, you did. We’re done. Completely through. Will and I split. Six months ago. We’re fighting over custody of Levi right now.” It was hard. Both of them spent a lot of time working, but Will had a stable family life available for Levi. Three sisters and his parents, while Piper only had herself. They both knew that Will actually didn’t want the custody, and was doing it just because he could, but she couldn’t prove it. Not that she wanted to ruin Will’s family. They were, and would always be, like a second family to her. But they were still Will’s first, and loyalty was a tricky thing right now.

“I’m just floored,” Madeline told her. Her face the picture of sympathy. Piper appreciated it. Asher continued to just gawk at her, and Piper rolled her eyes. She turned her attention completely to Madeline.

“We were great. He was great, but then he got a job offer in London. I just couldn’t pack it up and go with him. New York is my home, and he wanted the job more than he was willing to fight for me. So we had an argument, and I walked out in the middle of it, and that was it. We were over. Now it’s just petty and he’s turning mean, and it’s just a mess.”

“He really is Prince William,” Asher muttered, and Piper shot him an annoyed look. Hearing it once, she could live with; twice, not so much. As much as things were sour right now, Will was still a decent man. They were just both going through a lot, and moving to a new country made it even more difficult, and Levi just didn’t understand what was happening between them.

“Ignore him,” Madeline said, and touched a hand to Piper’s arm, drawing back her attention. “Let’s have a girl’s night this weekend and you can tell me everything, OK?”

Piper started to nod, but her face fell. “I’d love to, but I can’t. I have Levi every weekend.”

“Weekends only?” Piper nodded miserably at Madeline’s question, “That’s bogus. You are the perfect mother.”

“Tell that to the judge,” Piper said, bitterly. “Old family friend of Will’s lawyer. Basically does whatever when there’s money involved.”

“But you are not exactly poor, either,” Madeline said slowly, blinking owlishly at her friend.

“And I’m not going to waste all of it on the lawyer,” Piper shook her head. “Then when I got the custody, I’d have nothing to give to Levi. I need to provide for him.” She was his mother. She had to do everything she could for the future, not just the now. “Besides, Bob is representing me for free. Since I’m not paying, he has to put a few other clients first. That’s why this is taking so long, but he’s confident that it will be over soon. With Will leaving in a month, they don’t want to move the case overseas.”

“Wow, good luck.” Madeline gave her a confident smile, “We know you’ll win. Everyone could see how you are the obviously best choice for Levi. And since you can’t go out, we’ll have a movie night, then,” Madeline decided, “I’d love to see Levi again. I haven’t seen him since he was little. Now he’s full of personality, right?”

Piper smiled. ‘Personality’ was one way to describe Levi. “You got that right,” she laughed, “But sure. Movie night sounds great.” She shot Asher a thoughtful look, “You can come too, if you want.”

“Can’t, I have work all weekend.”

“You own the bar now, can’t you take a day or two off?”

Asher’s look was mock outraged in response to her, “I’m the boss, so I have to set the example. Besides, it’s the beginning of summer now. Everyone’s here for their vacation. Too busy to abandon ship.” Piper nodded. She remembered those days. That was how they’d first met. But Asher’s dad, Logan Davis, had been the owner then, and Piper had practically begged for a job the day she had turned 18, and was old enough to bartend. That had got her through many school nights. “But I’ll gladly raincheck it for a weekend in a few weeks? I’d love to see the squirt again.”

“Sure, or maybe I can bring him by the bar sometime.”

“He’ll be a big hit with the ladies,” Asher agreed, “Sure. I’ll open a little early for you sometime.”

“Great,” Madeline clapped her hands, and glanced down at her watch, “Now that we have this settled, Asher and I have to get going. Dad invited us over to meet his new flavor of the month, and we still need to get a bottle of the strongest wine that we can find. I’ll call you later tomorrow for the weekend?”

Piper nodded, and gave them each another hug, and watched them walk away, Asher tossing her a wave and smile over his shoulder. Who would have thought that one of the most horrible days of this week had turned out so great?

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