Return to Sparkhouse

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Title: Return to Sparkhouse

Author: Cat Chester

Rating: PG-13

Paring: John Standring/OC

Disclaimer: Not mine. Please don't sue as all I own are 3 dogs. Actually, you're welcome to the dogs.

Spoilers: For Sparkhouse

Summary: John and Lisa are making the best of life when Londoner Kate moves to Hebden Bridge hoping to make a new start. What is she hiding and will she ever find the courage to trust them?

Chapter One

"Come on, John, it's the 21st century, you have to move with the times."

"Lisa, love, I'm not really a 21st century kind of guy."

"I know, that's why I've booked you lessons."

John Standring groaned, knowing already that he had lost this argument. Lisa was his pride and joy and he couldn't have been prouder of her if she had been his own daughter, but by god was she suborn when she wanted to be, and he could tell that this was one of the times when she wanted to be.

He had two choices, continue to argue with her for another few days until she eventually wore him down, or give in gracefully now.

"How much are these lessons?" he asked.

"Free."

John narrowed his eyes at her.

"You don't get 'owt for nowt in this life, Lisa."

"Okay, she offered them for free if I'd walk her dog once a day."

"She can't walk her own dog? What's she have it for then?"

"No, she can, but she's disabled so she can't walk it too far and she likes her to have a nice run on the moors every day. She offered to pay me but I told her you needed lessons more than I needed payin'."

"Fine. You set it up and just tell me when and where."

Lisa smiled, pleased that she had won so easily. She kissed his cheek.

"You're great." She ran off upstairs to do her homework and John shook his head as he stared after her, smiling despite his misgivings.

Somehow he thought that her desire to bring the farm up to date with a computer might have more to do with getting a computer than helping the farm.

Still, his grandma used to say that a change is as good as a rest and who knew, maybe life would be easier if he could learn to use a computer.

III

John looked at the house with trepidation. He didn't much like meeting strangers and he really wasn't looking forward to meeting this one since he knew absolutely nothing about computers. He was afraid he'd show himself up.

"Come on!" Lisa called, bounding out of the car and running to the front door. She had already rung the bell by the time he was getting out of the car. The front door opened and the first thing he saw was a beautiful golden retriever which bounded into Lisa's waiting arms. Well, not into her arms exactly, more like the dog stood on it's hind legs to lick her face.

Clearly Lisa had been expecting this greeting.

"Down!" came a very sharp voice and the dog immediately dropped to the ground. Thankfully the next words spoken to the dog were much kinder. "There's a good girl, Daisy."

Seconds later he saw the owner of the voice as she stepped into the doorway and bent down to pet her dog.

"Sorry, I've gotten lax with her recently but she should know better."

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