Thank you so much for taking the time to read my story over the last couple weeks. It was great to finally put it out there at get some feedback form all you wonderful folks.
Let me know in the comments below what you thought of the book overall and if you would like to continue to see creative writing pieces from me.
You all have been amazing!
Get caught up before reading the conclusion:
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter One)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter Two)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 3-5)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 6)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter Seven)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 8)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 9)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 10)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 11)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 12)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 13)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 14 & 15)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 16)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 17)
- Discovering Wonderland (Chapter 18)
I should have gone after her but my mind was fogged over, and my body was in a state of shock. I could not believe that after all these years, Ophelia was here in the produce section of my local grocery store. In all the ways and all the places I imaged running into her, this was not one of them.
The grocery store?
Finally my feet moved as I realized who I just ran into. I shot out the store screaming her name at the top of my lungs. I had promised myself that if I ever found her again I would never let her go. She was the greatest thing to ever happen to me and I was foolish enough to let her slip through my fingers. I missed her every second of every day since I left. I kept telling myself that I didn’t have a choice, because it was true. Letting her go was the right thing to do. But damn, if it wasn’t the hardest.
Once outside the store my eyes scanned the parking lot, screaming for her with my hands cupped over my mouth. When I didn’t see her I started running towards the street searching for her. I headed towards where most of the hotels were and thats when I saw her. There were a handful of bodies between us. She was crossing the street.
I ran harder, faster, and screamed even louder. In the process I shoved people out of the way and got a lot of “Watch it man!” She had to have heard me because I was so close to her and there wasn’t that many people between us.
Why was she ignoring me?
She took a turn into an alley way and by the time I got to the ally she was gone. I ran up and down that ally, hands aggressively combing through my hair, curse words on my lips.
I made my way back to the grocery store and found Beth waiting for me outside the store, hunched over the green cart.
“What was that all about?” She said looking perplexed.
I looked at her, hollowness in my eyes.
“Arch? Was that her?” She asked grabbing my arm.
“Yes.” I whispered angry at myself for letting her get away, again.
“Oh my gosh, what are the chances?” She said smacking her lips.
“Apparently really great.” I said bitterly and then, “Why would she run? Do you think that she’s moved on and couldn’t face me?” I didn’t understand and it hurt in places so deep inside me that I felt like I swallowed a matchbox four years ago and the lighter fluid finally caught wind. I was a burning man, from the inside out.
Beth was silent for a minute before she looked at me guiltily, “No, Arch, I think that she thought you moved on.” She then rubbed her belly.
I let out a stream of expletive words.
This could not be happening.
“She thought you and I were together and that this was your baby.” Her eyes were wide.
“What do I do now?” I asked pleading.
“Well she has to be staying at one of the downtown hotels, right?” She asked.
I loved that she wanted to help me. Beth and her husband, Caster, had become my closest friends here. They new all about what happened with Ophelia and sympathized with the situation I had been put in. Beth taught at my school and told me that her husband had been looking for a new guitar player for his band after she heard me play. Caster and I hit it off right away. After a year of playing together he made me the front runner of his bad, so he had more time to focus on his three kids at home.
“They won’t give us any information.” I said pacing, exiting shoppers looked at me like I was a mad-man.
Maybe I was a mad-man.
“All you have to do is ask to call up to her room and if she is there they will call up. The hotel staff may not tell you what room number she is in but it will at least let you know what hotel she is at.” Beth says with eye brows raised high while pulling out her cell phone.
I pulled out my cell too, “I’ll call the hotels south of King Street and you can call the ones north. Starting with hotels that are closest to here.” I said and she nodded.
Twenty minutes later I had the name of the hotel she was at and Beth dropped me off at the front entrance. Running inside I made a quick glance around the lobby, nothing, which is what I was expecting.
Walking up to the front desk, I said, “My name is Leo Micheals and I am Ophelia Micheals brother, she is a guest here. I was hoping you could call up to her room and let her know I’m down here?” I said in my teacher voice, trustworthy and honest. The guy nodded and clicked at his keyboard until finally picking up the phone. I watched his fingers press 203. He looked at me and I gave him a quick smile, impatient. He looked away briefly and I shot out of the lobby and into the stairwell so fast he didn’t have time to yell at me.
I found her room and started banging loudly. “Ophelia let me in! We have to talk!”
The door opened aggressively just as the guy from the front desk popped out of the elevator, “Sir, you are not allowed to be in here without permission.” He looked aggravated.
My eyes to shot to Ophelia standing at the door, “It’s fine.” She said waving me inside.
Once I walked in she let the door close itself before shouldering past me and walking to the opposite side of the room. She stood with her feet shoulder width apart, back iron-rod straight, and arms across her chest as is she was trying to impersonate a bouncer at a club.
I drank her in then. She looked like she gained a couple pounds and those pounds made her ridiculously sexy. She wasn’t a sinewy teenager anymore but a curvy young woman. Her breasts looked like they grew a cup size and her hips were were a sharp curve. Her hair was in perfectly styled waves dangling right below her shoulders.
I bit my lip, lost for words, because I couldn’t stop staring. Her gold eyes were huge and glorious. No glasses in sight. Ophelia was wearing makeup too, a very settle classy amount. Her legs looked muscled and tan hanging under a short denim skit. My eyes traveled over her white t-shirt. Was she not wearing a bra? Holy shit. Holy freaking mother of all that was holy. She was always a gorgeous girl but now she was completely sexy. I blinked over and over again trying to digest this new Ophelia, but I couldn’t.
“Will you stop eye-raping me and tell me why you are here?” She finally said breaking my somewhat creepy staring. Geez, what was I just doing? That was completely degrading and rude. Where were my manors? Where was my voice? She looked poised and pissed, like she had no time for me and my issues.
“Yeah, geez, frick…man…,” I stammered trying to compose myself and she raised her eyebrows, impatient.
Damn. Mother of all the damned.
I shoved my hands in the loose pockets of my khaki shorts and adjusted myself. I had hoped it was subtle but when her eyes watched me I felt horrified at my behavior. Talk about being weird pervert.
“I’m sorry Ophelia. I don’t know what say and your so damn sexy that I can’t think straight. I mean you have always been beautiful but it’s just hard seeing you again and all these feelings and longings just came rushing back. Almost like…”
“You never left.” She said with a serious look on her face.
“Yeah,” I said meeting her gaze finally gaining control of my lust. Ok, some of my control.
“But you did leave. Disappeared without a frickin’ trace.” She said darkly, breathing through her nose.
“Yeah.” I said. Man I was lame not being able to say all the things I wanted to. “I don’t remember you talking like this.” I finally said.
“I don’t remember you being an ogling perv but here we are,” She shot back.
“You’re right, I shouldn’t have ached like that,” I said sincerely and then I started laughing.
Her face contorted, “Why are you laughing?”
“Because I held back so much before, Ophelia. I did everything I could to make you feel respected, but I just undid all that behavior in less then five minutes. Maybe if I had been this creepy from the start we wouldn’t be here now.” I explained with a laugh on my lips. I couldn’t believe we were in the same room.
Alone, without rules or reasons why we can’t.
Ophelia let out a small laugh.
Oh, how I missed her laugh.
She bit her lower lip, her tough demeanor cracking slightly, “Where’s you baby mama?” She asked looking away from me, a ghost town in her voice.
I tilted my head back laughing, “Did you just say baby mama?” I watched as her arms relaxed slowly and she let out a smile. I loved how she was always so protective with her smile. She only let it out when she wanted to. Her real smile that is. Not that weird one she plastered on her face sometimes. The one I saw her wearing every time I watched one of her interviews on TV or when she had a small feature in a magazine.
“Beth is my friend and so is her husband Caster. Just friends.” I said exhaling a sigh of relief that the truth was out.
“So you don’t have yourself a baby mama?” She said smiling hard now, full-on grin.
“Nope, no baby mama.” I clarified smiling, a smile I only had for her.
“Why did you leave?” She asked cutting to the chase.
“I had to. I felt like a pedophile being accused of rape and sitting in jail all night.”
“I was hardly a child.”
“Child enough in the eyes of the law, plus I was your teacher. I crossed lines Ophelia.”
“You could have told me where you were going so we could have kept it touch, at the very least.”
“No I couldn’t have because you wouldn’t have been able to become the person you are now. I had to believe that you would come back to me one day.”
“That’s bullshit, you should have given us a chance. Yeah, I’m lucky enough to be living my dream but it would have been a million times better shared with you.”
“Sometimes love has different plans,” I took a step closer to her. “Maybe, I made a mistake or maybe I saved us.” I took another step closer, “Who really knows?” Two more steps, “All I know is that I am here now.” I took one last step towards her. I stood at one corner of the hotel bed and she stood at the other. A beds width between us.
“So there is no one else?” She asked taking a step towards me.
“There has never been anyone else, Ophelia.” I took another step towards her.
“There has only ever been you, for me too.” She closed the gap between and then asked, “Even after all these years?” She needed me to confirm that despite time and distance my feelings never changed.
Her gold eyes looked up at me, lost and hopeful, “Even after all these years.” I echoed.
“I’m mad at you. Your broke my heart.” She breathed.
I reached out and stroked her face with the back of my hand, “I’m not worried about that.”
“And why is that?” She closed her eyes at my touch.
“Because you love me too much to stay mad at me.” I flipped my hand over and cupped her face.
“You think so?” Her voice was barely above a whisper.
“I know so,” I said planting a light kiss on her lips before saying, “And I’m madly in love with you too, Ophelia.” I kissed her then ever so slowly. My eyes open at first wanting to see her reaching her lips toward me. I tasted her top lip and lightly bit her bottom one before opening her mouth with my tongue. She moaned slightly and pushed herself into me. I grabbed her leg and twisted her as I pushed her down on the bed my kiss turning more aggressive. I sucked on her tongue as she moved up on the bed my body following her. Her hands were in my hair and I pushed myself deeper on top of her, grinding slightly. One of her legs bent so her heel was touching the edge of her bum. She was wearing a denim skirt so that movement allowed the tightness in my jeans to feel her heat. I groaned as my kiss became wild, passionate, and hungry. I slipped my hand under her shirt and felt her her bare breast. Moving my mouth to her jawline, collar bone, and down the V in her t-shirt. Using my other hand I tugged her shirt up, Ophelia arched her back and lifted her hands above her head as I pulled it all the way off. My lips were immediately on her bare nipples, sucking, tasting, savoring, which caused her to gasp for air over and over again. Her hands were now under my shirt and I let her tug it off of me.
I started to push myself off of her but she only gripped her fingers around my neck and forced my mouth on her. When I tried again she wrapped her legs around me. I swung around landing on my back, her grip was so tight around me that her body followed mine. I stopped kissing her at this point but rubbed my hands along her bare back as she sucked on my neck and trailed her hands down, unclasping my pants. I moaned out her name.
Finally I was able to shove her all the way off of me. She looked confused as she lay there panting beside me.
“Ophelia?” I asked, “Do you remember what I said to you the night you slept over at my house.”
“Remind me.” She whispered rolling on her side.
“If we do this I’m yours completely. Always and forever. There is no halfway with me. It’s all of me for always or nothing. Are you ready for that, Ophelia? To spend our lives together?” I rolled on my side and traced her frame with my fingers.
“Always, so serious. You do know that we have only been back in each other’s lives for like two hours right?” She joked but her eyes were smiling.
“Ophelia?” I said looking deep into her pupils.
She leaned forward and kissed me softly while running her hand over my face, “Archer, I’m yours. I’d marry you tomorrow.”
I kissed her slowly reaching higher and higher into a state of perfect oblivion. We were lost inside our own world, in each other. I pulled away again and stared deeply into her beautiful face.
She exhaled loudly, “Why do you always stop when it gets to the good part?”
I smiled at her impatience, “This is the best part.”
“What is?” She asked.
I grabbed her hand and entwined her fingers with mine, “Being here with you.”
She smiled, “Your right, we should probably slow it down.”
I laughed, “Hi, Ophelia how are you? Long time no see?”
She laughed loudly at my attempt to go back to the basics, “Hi, I’m really good at the moment and yourself?”
“The best I’ve been in awhile.” I kissed the top of her forehead and then settled back down on my pillow looking at her. Our hands were still intertwined.
It was as close to perfect as I have ever felt.
“So Archer,” She asked.
“What have you been up to all these years?”