Chapter 14

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Samson

We watch Melanie and Brock push Shannon on the swings while Carmen and I walk around. Shannon wanted Carmen to push her but we had to explain that she wasn't well enough and it would hurt her to push her. Carmen promised the next time we go to the park that she would play with her.

"I'm happy that I got my memory back up to high school, but I still need these past seven years." She's playing with the ends of her hair. "I'm sure the rest will come. You made great strides today. I'm sure the rest will come back soon." I'm being encouraging. I would really like for her memory to come back so we can get the details of what happened. I want to push it with her so bad, but I know it will hurt her if I do.

We decide to have a picnic after we've been at the park for a while. Melanie calls Rose and Kyle while Carmen and I go get the food that she ordered. We decide against inviting Ray and Brianne, much to Carmen's chagrin. We just want a peaceful afternoon and we won't have that with Brianne here. I really need to figure out what to do about her.

When we get back from picking up the food, Kyle, Rose and Tyler have already arrived and is helping spread out the blanket. Carmen is looking at the blanket like she's trying to figure something out. "What's wrong?" I put the food down on the blanket. "How am I going to sit down on the ground? I can barely stand upright." She says pensively.

I never thought I would enjoy having someone sit on my lap again, but Carmen feels like she belongs here. She timidly sits up straight and is eating her food while Melanie and Rose make suggestive comments. She blushes every now and then, covering her face with all of those gorgeous curls. Tyler tries to climb into her lap, but the adults have to stop him because even though he is little, we know that Carmen is in too much pain to hold him. We distracted him and now he's playing with a toy.

A little girl about seven years old walks over to us and looks at Carmen. "Are you Merida?"

Carmen looks amused, "I'm not sweetie. I guess I just look like her. My name is Carmen. What's yours?"

"Molly. My mom is over there." She points to where her mom is keeping an eye on her. Melanie waves her over. While she walks over, Carmen asks, "How old are you Molly."

"I'm seven. I'll be in second grade when school starts." She discloses. "Do you have any sisters or brothers?" Carmen is giving her all of her attention. That may be why kids like her so much. She treats them like they are the most important person in the room. "I have a little brother who's three. He couldn't come today because he has a cold." About that time, her mother reaches us, "Hi." She reaches out to shake Carmen's hand, "My name is Ann. I'm sorry we disturbed your picnic. She just had to come over and speak to Merida. I kept telling her you weren't her, but she wanted to check for herself."

Carmen shakes her hand, "No problem. I've been getting that a lot lately. I'm going to have to see the movie one day so I can see what everyone is talking about."

"You haven't seen the movie yet? Have you even looked it up online?" She asks. Carmen shakes her head, "I don't want it to be ruined for me. I haven't had a chance to see it yet and I'm sure that Shannon over here will make sure that she's with me when I do see it." Shannon nods enthusiastically. "Can I see it with you also?" Molly asks. "Sure." Carmen agrees.

Ann gives us their telephone number and we tell her that we will call them when we come up with a date and time to watch it. They thank us and walk away, Molly skipping excitedly. "Is this what we're going to run into every time we go to a place where there's kids?" Brock laughs. "That's the way it's been so far." Carmen responds. "I guess we better get used to it quick." Kyle says. We finish lunch and go our separate ways. Carmen and I go to the drug store to get her some more ibuprofen and cream then to her apartment.

While she's napping, I speak with Agent Holmes, "Why didn't you all call me when this happened?"

"Because if we would have, you would have done exactly what you did and ruined your cover. I know that you feel protective of her, but you have to act like you are with the rest of the group that you all hang with, whoever she calls will automatically call you anyway." He responds.

"But I didn't find out until this morning! It happened last night!" I insist.

"Did you talk to her about it?" He asks.

"Yes."

"What did she say?"

"That she will call me first from now on." I answer. "Then you have nothing to worry about, right?" He's proven his point. I sigh. He must hear me because he gives a little, "If it's something really important from now on, we'll call you immediately. Does that make you feel better?"

"I appreciate it. Thanks." I tell him. We hang up and I check on Carmen who is still sleeping peacefully. I grin at the two braids that she puts in her hair before she goes to bed. I asked her why she braids it and she told me that she will have to cut it off if she doesn't and Little Orphan Annie hair isn't her style.

I'm tempted to lay down with her, but resist the urge. I lay down on the couch and turn on the television.

Carmen

I wake up feeling a lot better. I can move just a little more. I should be good as new in a couple of days. I'm glad that I don't go back to work until Monday. I walk into the living room and see Samson sleep on the couch. I walk over and grab the blanket off of the back of the couch and cover him up with it.

I walk back into my bedroom so I don't disturb him and call Kathy my therapist. "Hello." She answers. I'm glad I got her and not her answering service. "Hi Kathy. It's Carmen. I'm calling you to tell you what happened last night. Do you have a minute?"

"I am actually in the middle of a free hour, so you're in luck. What happened?" I explain what happened to me and the result of it. "You got some of your memory back! That's awesome!"

"So what happens next?" I ask. "You just have to be patient. You know that the rest of your memory will come back, you just don't know when. That was the part of your memory that your mind is okay with now. The next time it happens, it may happen all at once or you may only get a couple of years. We just don't know when and how it will happen. I'm really happy for you. Have you thought about what I told you?"

I look out my bedroom door towards the living room. I can't see Samson, but I can hear his even breathing indicating that he's still asleep. "I have. You're right. As long as I remember everything when I get my memory back, I shouldn't wait to live. I'm ready to start dating."

"That's good. Let's set up an appointment for next week and then we'll cover it more." She says. We set up an appointment for next week and hang up the phone. I want to wait for Samson to be ready, but I need to move forward now. He may see that I'm ready and then he'll be ready. I know its wishful thinking, but I need to keep my hope alive.


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