Sunday, February 11, 2018

Love at the Candy Heart Cafe - Chapter Eleven by Belle Calhoune



                                         Love at the Candy Heart Cafe
                                
                             Chapter Eleven by Belle Calhoune

                   





It was time for Candy to be completely honest with herself.  Her feelings were bubbling over like a chocolate fountain at a wedding reception.  The letter from Honey Sweet had sealed the deal! Chad Hershey was the only man she’d ever loved.  And, judging by the way her heart burned like cinnamon red hots for him, that love had never dissipated.  Not for a single moment.  She’d been holding it inside of her all this time.

Life was too short to not grab for the brass ring!

For the first time since Chad had come charging back into her life, Candy felt hopeful.  Taffy’s words meant the world to her.  It felt as if she had her best friend back, as well as a shot at happily ever after with the man of her dreams.  But, in order to fix things with Chad, she needed to go after him and tell him how she felt about him.  She wanted to tell him she had no intention of marrying Bruce Tart. He was about as appealing to her as an apple pie with a worm in it.

It was a huge leap of faith for her to lay her heart bare to Chad after he’d disappointed her by trying to get her to sell the café. But she knew Chad’s heart was as beautiful as a plate full of chocolate eclairs.  She just knew there had to be a reasonable explanation for his actions.

“Can you cover for me, Taffy?” she asked her friend as her heart thundered in her chest.  “I need to find Chad.”

“Of course I can.”  Taffy winked at Candy.  “Go get him!”

Candy ripped off her red heart apron and handed it over to Taffy.  She rushed toward the door, pushed it open and took a deep breath of the briny sea air.  She raced over to her licorice red convertible and hopped inside.  While she revved the engine she tried to formulate a plan to find the man she loved.  She flipped on the radio, tapping her fingers against the steering wheel as a romantic love song wafted through the speakers.





Where was Chad?  She was racking her brain trying to figure it out. He had left the Candy Heart Café as if his feet had been on fire. His eyes had shimmered with betrayal and disillusionment moments before he took off.  He’d been as upset as she had ever seen him. 

All of a sudden, Candy had a hunch she knew exactly where he’d gone. 

Their lighthouse.  It was the place where they had always gone to seek tranquility and solace.  The red and white peppermint lighthouse had special meaning for the two of them.  It had always been a sweet harbor from the storms of life.  They had enjoyed their first date there - a summer picnic followed by stargazing - and made promises to one another about spending their future together.  Tears misted her eyes as tender memories washed over her.  Her relationship with Chad had always been as sweet as the filling in a Key lime pie. 

Could they somehow find their way back to that blissful place in time?

A few minutes later, Candy had arrived at her destination.  She stepped out of her car and walked down the boardwalk toward the lighthouse.  It glistened in the distance like red candy apples.  






Candy looked up at the structure, shielding her eyes from the glare of the sun with her hand. Was he inside?  Hope propelled her forward as she mounted the steps leading up to the top of the lighthouse.  When she reached the top, Chad was standing on the balcony looking out toward the water, his profile as strong as granite. She was suddenly seized by nerves.  Could she really put into words the way she felt about him without getting tongue-tied? 

“Chad,” she said in a raised voice, wanting to be heard above the sound of the roaring ocean.

He turned around to face her, a look of surprise etched on his handsome features.  There was a hard edge to his mouth.  He scowled at her.  “What are you doing here? Shouldn’t you be celebrating your engagement?”

Suddenly, she felt as if a gumball was lodged in her throat.  How could she tell him everything resting on her heart?

“I came here to find you, Chad.  You left the café before I could explain about Bruce.  I’m not marrying him.  Not now or ever!”

Surprise radiated from Chad’s face.  His features softened. “You’re not?” 

“No, Chad,” she said with a shake of her head. “I wouldn’t marry Bruce Tart for anything in this world.  Not even to save my business."

Chad took a few steps closer toward her, easily swallowing up the distance between them.  "I'm sorry for storming off.  I should have known you would never get engaged to the likes of Bruce Tart."  He reached out and swept his palm across her cheek.

"No, I wouldn't," Candy said, her lips trembling.  "How could I, Chad?  There's only one man who holds my heart...and that's you."





22 comments:

  1. Love the addition of a lighthouse, Belle! Also love that Candy and Chad are together, at last!

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    1. Thanks, Debby. It's the Cape Codder in me. We New England gals love lighthouses.

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  2. Ah, Debby, but can they stay together?

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  3. Tis the question... she's gone after him... put herself out there... what's he going to do in return?

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    1. I guess we'll see what Chad is made of in the next installment.

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  4. I love this, Sandra. I have to admit, I was hoping their special place was a lighthouse. I actually almost wrote that in, but then decided I'd better leave it to you. So glad you thought so too.

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    1. Thanks, Cate. It was great collaborating with you. Between your Maine roots and my Cape Cod roots I think we came up with the lighthouse together.

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    2. A lighthouse was in the cards...or the strawberry cream pie! :)

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  5. I love the lighthouse and the ocean. It would be my special place too.

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    1. Lighthouses and the ocean are my things! I was showing my Cape Cod roots.

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  7. I love this. I could see the lighthouse, the sea, her bright yellow scarf dancing in the wind. Can't wait to see what happens tomorrow!OH! Wait. It's me. This is so fun. Will they get to kiss?

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    1. Thanks, Jolene. I'm so hoping there is a kiss in tomorrow's installment. After all this time and separation...there's gotta be a kiss or two.

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  8. Oh so sweet. I can’t wait to see how this turns out.

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    1. Thanks, Terri. I'm rooting for a HEA. I know Jolene Navarro will give us some feel-good moments.

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  9. Living on the Oregon coast, I'm also a lover of lighthouses! What an absolutely romantic spot...now to read the outcome next...yay, can't wait!

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    1. Hi Trixi! I would love to visit the Oregon Coast one of these days. It looks gorgeous.

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  10. Replies
    1. Hi Deb! Moving toward that HEA. Biting my nails now.

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