The next evening, Andalie carefully dressed and arranged her hair. Tonight was an important night – a life changer! – and she was determined to do this right.
She walked alone to the park, and waited patiently under the wedding arch, her white dress heavy against her legs.
As she stood and waited, Andalie’s patience waned. She was so excited, so anxious to see the expression on Dean’s face when he arrived! Her romantic surprise proposal and flash wedding were sure to impress, and while the shadows grew longer and longer, Andalie passed the time fantasizing about the life they would have together as husband and wife.
But as the minutes stretched on, and the sun began it’s descent behind the horizon, Andalie’s excitement turned to worry and then finally, to acceptance.
Dean wasn’t coming.
There would be no wedding tonight.
Andalie did not take it very well.
She tried to cheer herself by flirting with this guy…
But her efforts were to no avail. No one would ever live up to Dean. Andalie wandered home with a shattered heart and a broken spirit.
Luckily for Andalie, there was an upside to her insanity, and it came in the form of frequent irrational mood swings. Usually this got her into trouble, but when she woke up the following morning, it was as if Andalie had completely forgotten about the previous night’s rejection. She was as optimistic and cheery as if Dean was nothing but a distant memory. On this particular morning, her insanity was a blessing in disguise.
She bounced downstairs to find Emmeline and fill her in on her newest, BEST plan yet.
Andalie: It’s go time for Operation Nash!
Emmeline’s jaw nearly hit the floor. Just two days ago, Andalie was head over heels in love with Dean, and now she was back to pursuing Nash? Emmeline didn’t know what happened to change her sister’s mind, and she didn’t ask questions. There was no point trying to understand crazy.
Emmeline: Okay, well that’s good news. But, uh, Andalie … what happened to Dean?
Andalie blanched, but recovered in the blink of an eye.
Andalie: Nash is the love of my life! My soulmate! Today is the day! Carpe diem!
And off she went. It didn’t take long for her to score a date with the hunky blonde, and later that night they met up at the local nightspot. Andalie worried vaguely about getting caught by his girlfriend, but like most other unpleasant thoughts, she pushed the idea quickly out of her head.
Andalie: I’m so glad you agreed to meet me! Whatever happened to your girlfriend?
Nash: Girlfriend? I’ve never been in a relationship before, Andalie. I don’t know who you’re talking about.
Andalie: After my mom died and I was so awful to you…I saw you in the park with a pretty girl in a pink shirt… She wasn’t your girlfriend?
Nash: You must mean Paulina! She’s just a friend, Andalie. I went to her for advice on how to cheer you up. If you’d only asked instead of just disappearing you would have known that!
Andalie: I thought I’d driven you away…
Nash: You could never drive me away, Andalie. Why do you think I’ve never been in a relationship? No one has ever measured up to you!
Andalie: Nash… There’s something you should know. I have two children. A girl and a baby boy….
To his credit, Nash managed to hide his shock. All this time he’d been waiting around for Andalie, and she’d had two children with another man?
Nash: What happened to their father?
Andalie explained that there were actually two fathers. She gave him a brief rundown of her role as the heir, and breezily glossed over her rather intense obsession with Dean.
Nash seemed satisfied to think that Andalie hadn’t had any real feelings for either of the men, that she was only answering the call of duty.
Nash: Well…how about we avoid any more misunderstandings, Andalie. I’ve waited a long time to call you my girlfriend …. Is it okay if I start now?
Of course Andalie accepted. She only thought of Dean twice while she hugged Nash.
The new couple celebrated by renting a room in the adjacent lodge.
And of course, Andalie couldn’t wait to take a pregnancy test.
While Andalie used the bathroom, Nash had wandered back to the night club. Andalie ran off in search of him, so excited to tell him the good news that she didn’t even think to change out of her pajamas.
But as she walked into the bar, a familiar face stopped her in her tracks.
Her heart dropped into the pit of her stomach. Dean. She suppressed the urge to run to him, but his name screamed through her head.
Dean!! Dean!!!!!!!!!! DEAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Dean!! Dean!!!!!!!!!! DEAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Go to him! Make him love you! Who was I looking for, anyway? Wait, Nash! I like Nash! Dean! DEAN! DEAN!
She closed her eyes, overwhelmed by the cacophony inside her head. She opened her eyes carefully, and focused on the task at hand. She needed to tell Nash that he was going to be a father. At first, she balked at the idea of letting Dean know she had someone new – after all… what if he still wanted her? She didn’t want him to think she was taken. Even if, technically, she was.
But then she remembered his never ending game of hard to get.
Perfect, Andalie thought. Now he’ll finally see how desirable I am! He’ll be sure to want me back, now that he thinks he can’t have me!
And so, right in front of Dean, Andalie gave Nash the good news.
Dean reacted just as she’d hoped – by showing off and trying hard to get Andalie’s attention. Of course, he already had her attention. But Andalie saw jealousy written all over his face, and for once, she was sure she had him right where she wanted him.
And Andalie was back to square one. Only this time, she had a boyfriend and Nash’s baby growing inside her.