Episode Twelve - Maybe In Another Life

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"Oh wait, I almost forgot the gift." I whispered, I took my hand from his.

"Gift?" Seb exclaimed. "Dad won't be expecting anything."

"It's just a book." I replied. "I bought it when your Mom first invited me."

I walked into the kitchen and opened the cupboard above the fridge. I took out the black and yellow wrapped present and walked back across the floor to where Sebastian stood.

"Let's go."

We walked out of the house and I locked the door behind us. We walked in silence to Seb's care and then drove in silence to the country club. I hadn't been back since the first time all those years ago. But it hadn't changed much.

Sebastian parked the car near the front and before I even had a chance to open my own door he was out of the car, and there holding out his hand for me.

"Are you trying to be a gentleman?" I teased. "Because I think you're forgetting that I know all your deepest darkest secrets Sebastian Tolley."

"Not all of them." He muttered under his breath. I was about to press him for an explanation but before I could I heard Anne call from the entrance to the club.

I placed my hand in Sebastian's and let him help me out of the car.

"Mom." Sebastian exclaimed, closing my door behind me. "Everything okay?"

"Everything is fine, Aunt Karina is being a busy body as usual so I escaped for some fresh air." Anne stopped and looked at me her eyes widened and she said stepped forward.

"Emelia you look beautiful."

I felt my skin redden, as I forced a smile onto my face. "Thanks."

"Well I'd better return to the party. See you two in there." Anne turned and walked back toward the country club entrance. I sucked in a deep breath and closed my eyes.

"You okay?" Seb asked softly.

"Everyone in there has achieved so much more than me. I'm a diner girl." I whispered. "I feel like cinderella all dressed up, but I'm a fraud."

Sebastian frowned, he turned and faced me before placing his hands on my shoulders. "You are not a fraud and no one in there is better than you because of what they've done with their lives. You are cinderella Em, but unlike the fairytale you don't have to run away at midnight."

I nodded. "Sorry. It's just been an odd sort of day."

"Want to talk about it?"

I shook my head and looked toward the building. "We should get in there before the party is over. Besides it's nothing really."

Except it wasn't nothing. Today had been a mental mindfuck for a multitude of reasons.

Sebastian nodded and we walked toward the entrance. Sebastian walked me to the present table and I lay the small gift down. Alongside the other it looked small and insignificant, but I knew that Ted would appreciate a book on the history of Rugby. Sebastian and I had grown up listening to the New Zealand born man waxing lyrical about the sport. I'd watched a game once, it was like a brutal version of American football without the padding and helmets.

"Drink?" Sebastian asked.

"Yeah, I could go for drink."

"Wine? Champagne... Screwdriver?" Sebastian exclaimed as we walked toward the bar.

"I'm still only 20." I reminded him.

"And?"

"I don't drink Seb." I whispered. I hadn't touched a drop since the night I'd spun out.

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