Chapter 3.49 – Goodbyes

Two days later, Reagan’s father went home. Reagan gave him a day to get settled before she decided to bring up moving. If he said no, he needed her here, she’d stay in a heartbeat. When she arrived at their home, Dannie directed her to the TV room with barely a word.

Her father was sitting up, watching TV, both of his dogs by his side, when she walked in. His eyes lit up when he saw her. She didn’t deserve his love, but she desperately needed it, and that little expression both lifted her spirits and put an arrow through her heart. “Hi Daddy.  Dannie said you were in here. Am I interrupting?”

“Never. This was boring anyway,” he said and turned off the TV smiling. He picked up Buster, the little dog sleeping next to him.  “Come here Buster, let’s make room for Reagan,” he said, as the dog affectionately lapped at his face, then he patted the now empty seat next to him and looked up at her.  “Come sit down and tell me what’s on your mind.”

Was she that transparent? “Daddy, first, I want you to know how sorry I am. I was foolish and blind when it came to Mother. I only saw what I wanted to see and it nearly cost you …” She stopped and inhaled sharply, unable to say the words.

“Baby stop that,” scolded her father. “There’s absolutely nothing to forgive. We were all fooled by her at some point. And frankly, I wasn’t exactly the ‘World’s Best Dad’ when you and Ryan became teens. I did some unforgivable things to protect you, but should’ve been honest instead. Your mother was a sociopath and I couldn’t bear seeing the pain her absence caused you two. I assure you, my actions all came from a place of deep love …” he paused and chuckled, “I guess what they say about the road to hell is true, but it’s all over now. We got lucky.  I’m fine and I’ll be back to work in a month.  And while your mother’s death is sad, it’s on her, not you, or me.”

“I feel so guilty about everything,” said Reagan.  He couldn’t possibly dismiss it that easily.  “You were only trying to protect me from her.  I thought you were jealous and selfish.  I understand you weren’t, but I didn’t then. I was terrible. I’m sorry.”

“Honey, you were a hormonal teenager whose identity was torn apart. If I hadn’t handled it so poorly, maybe you wouldn’t have run to her, or even Archer. So let’s put it in the past and just try to learn from it.”

“Daddy, that’s just it. Everything here, it’s too hard. I can’t escape it, even my house, my work, Evan …”  She almost said Dannie, but stopped herself.  “Archer asked me to come to San Myshuno with him … for a month. I need to get away for a little while, but I don’t want to leave you. I owe you so much. I should be helping care for you.”

“Dannie treats me like an invalid.  I assure you, I’m being well taken care of.”  He paused for a minute before continuing, carefully choosing his words.  “But, sweetheart, while I can understand your need to run away from reality for awhile, please, be careful that you aren’t going with Archer for the wrong reasons.”

“You still don’t trust him, do you?” asked Reagan, her tone more accusatory than she intended.

“I owe him your life, and mine too. He’s turned out to be a hard working young man … however, his profession can be dangerous … so I worry about that.  Plus, I think you have unresolved issues with Evan. You’re in love with him and I know he loves you too. Very much, in spite of what happened, what Avery did to him. We all make mistakes sweetheart. You should give him a chance to explain.”

“Daddy, Archer has been great. He helped me so much after the shooting. You’re right, I owe him. If he hadn’t been there … I don’t know what I would’ve done.”  A shiver went down her spine.  She might not be sitting here.

But her father’s words bothered her.  Was she really running away from reality? She just needed to go where it was safe and think, and Archer was safe. He wasn’t dangerous – at all.  He worked in an office.  And Evan. She did love Evan. When she saw him, she knew she still had deep feelings for him. But, right now, she couldn’t think about him and his lies. It hurt too much and she needed time away from the hurt. 

“I’m only going to be gone for a month,” she said finally, keeping her voice soft.  “I could never stay away forever. My family is here, my job too. I just need time to get my head on straight.”

“But what about Evan?” asked Cole pointedly.

God, he won’t give it up, thought Reagan.  “I have to sort it out,” she said.

“And you can do that, away from him? Living with Archer?” asked her father, incredulous.

“I can’t stay and think.,” she explained, “And anyway, Archer and I are only friends.”

“Friends don’t look at friends the way Archer looks at you,” said Cole and blew out a breath, “but I don’t know If I’m in a position to say what you need to do. Maybe it’ll do you good to get away for a little while. But you should keep an open mind about Evan. He’s suffered a lot at the hands of Avery.”

Haven’t we all? she though sarcastically.  She would try anyway.  She did long for Evan’s embrace, the way he touched her, his almost reverent kisses, the way he made love to her, and that sexy as hell grin that gave her goosebumps every time. God, what was she doing? How could she want him so much when he lied to her? Archer is safe, she repeated as a mantra to herself, and he’s been nothing short of sweet and respectful. And she needed safe right now.

Reagan turned to her father and kissed his cheek. “I will Daddy.  Thanks for being understanding.  Sooo, can I stay and watch the movie with you?”

He laughed and pulled her next to him before turning the TV back on. While they watched the movie, his comments about both Archer and Evan kept niggling at her consciousness.  She had to force them back so she could enjoy her last day with her father for the next month.

****************************************************************************

By that evening, everything was settled. Reagan and Archer planned to leave the next morning.  She sat in his hotel room where she’d just hung up with Ryan, telling him her plans, while Archer finished packing.

She figured Ryan wouldn’t be happy and she wasn’t wrong. He felt like she was rebounding from Evan.  He also said Evan loved her and she should give him a chance. Neither he nor her father could understand how painful it was for her to be around him. They should form the ‘Evan Connor Fan Club’ and hang out with him, she thought angrily.

A few minutes later, her phone rang. Evan. She knew Ryan must’ve called him. She should’ve told him she was going to call him. He should’ve heard it from her. Ryan probably didn’t think she would. But she would have, wouldn’t she? She took several deep breaths and answered his call.

“Hi Evan,” she said weakly, bracing herself.

“Reagan, please tell me it’s not true.  You’re leaving town with him? And you weren’t even going to tell me?” He sounded so hurt and so sad. She could feel his pain through the phone and it cut her like a knife.

“I promise, I was going to call before I left,” she said gently, “but Evan, I have to get away. I can’t breathe here. Everywhere I go and everything I do reminds me of either you or her. It’s too much.” Reagan began to get emotional. Dammit. That’s exactly what she had to leave.

“You’re running away from me?” His voice was filled with pain.

“No Evan. I just need time to think, and I can’t think straight in Newcrest.”

“We never got to have dinner.  Reagan, don’t run. We need to talk. Then maybe you’ll understand. There’s so much left unsaid. Let us try. I want you in my life. And there are things you deserve to know – regardless.”

Was he right? Was she was running from him? Or was she running to Archer like her father suggested without saying it? Was Ryan right and Archer was a rebound? But they were only friends. Why did everyone assume otherwise?  All she knew was she needed space away from Evan and Willow Creek. For now anyway.

She pulled herself together before responding. “I have to do this, for me. I’m taking a one month leave from work. My grandparents are going to continue to help you and Ami while I’m gone.  I’ll be back Evan.  We can have dinner when I return and can think straight.  So you aren’t surprised, I told Ami to put my house on the market.  I can’t go back inside of it.  Maybe you can help Ami keep an eye out for a new place in Newcrest? I will be back.”

She knew she was rambling, so she stopped talking.  She shouldn’t be asking him to help sell her house.  What was she thinking?  She wasn’t.  That was the problem.

Evan was quiet for a minute and when he spoke his voice was thick with emotion. “I’ll help her with it. Of course I will.  We’ll move your things to storage. I love you Reagan. You love me too. I know you do.”

“Evan, please don’t,” begged Reagan.  She just couldn’t deal with it now.

“I’m sorry, but it’s true and I couldn’t let you leave without you hearing it one more time.”

“I have to go. I’ll call you,”  she said and disconnected the call.

The minute she hung up Archer turned around.  “Reagan, are you okay?”  asked Archer, “I couldn’t help but overhear.”

“Goodbyes suck,” was all she could say.

He put his arms around her. “It’ll be easier once you’re away. Trust me. I know.”

“I hope so,” she said into his chest as he pulled her tight against him, “all of this is just too hard.” 

Go To Chapter 3.50>>>>>

Go back to Chapter 3.48

48 thoughts on “Chapter 3.49 – Goodbyes

  1. Reagan has gone from being a naïve little dummy about her mum to… being a naïve little dummy about Archer. Great job, girl. Just great. And would someone PLEASE, FOR THE LOVE OF EVERYTHING, tell Reagan what Avery did to Evan?! I thought Cole was going to tell there, but I guess he assumed she knew. These people, I swear…
    Well, at least Cole apologised and realised that he wasn’t a great dad to Reagan and Ryan. Not that Reagan really listens… she doesn’t seem to listen to anyone but Archer which is just… it’s such a bad idea omg.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Ugh!

    I’m glad she had a nice chat with Daddy Cole. But can she be more clueless? He nearly knocked her over with “what your mother did to Evan”.

    Why the frick is no one telling her? I’m pulling my hair out at this point!

    Well, Archer will get his time with her. Then she’ll realize who she belongs with!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Chapter 3.48 – Time Away | New Beginnings

  4. I, too, thought Cole would tell her. I’m surprised she didn’t pay attention to “what your mother did to him”. She has no idea. And it did hurt me when she didn’t say ‘I love you’ back to Evan. She’s making the same mistakes all over again, but this time with Archer, not Avery, and everyone is trying to warn her like the first time. And oh boy, it must have been so painful to Evan when she said everything reminded him of Avery AND him. It’s like he was in any way similar to the witch that RAPED him.
    BTW, “while Evan finished packing”? I’m pretty sure you meant Archer? But I guess that works well for Reagan and her messed up mind.
    And here just yesterday I was talking to Louise about how we should start with the #restrainingordersonArcher, but she said Enzo’s dad’s not going to help us 😦

    Liked by 2 people

    • Poor Evan… she has no idea. At least he knows she doesn’t know. But I think Cole thinks she knows a lot more than she does. Not only does she not know what Avery did to Evan, she doesn’t know that it was Archer and his team that raided the game room. And that he shit her mother. Not with the needle, but with the gun. She just thought they were there to help.

      I know that it must have hurt Evan for her to say everything reminds her of him lumped in with Avery. She totally didn’t mean it the same way, but yes. Ouch. Big time. I wouldn’t be surprised if he made some changes and didn’t wait on her. But she keeps making promises to give him time to talk.

      Ohhhh. And yes. Good catch! It totally meant Archer. I guess Evan was on my mind. It works for her and her irrational thinking. Or desire not to think.

      Dang! Not that Enzo is going to the dark side, aka Gina, maybe he can get a restraining order! Cole and Ryan and Evan would be onboard! Lol

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Strange chapter. Not sure how I feel about any of it. Actually, I am sure. Didn’t like it. Cole being kind did not surprise me. I never got on that Cole-hatred bandwagon. Not really sure about the logic of running away to “heal” when your dad is recoup’ing from something you feel so guilty about and also to go with someone you know you still have confused feelings about, who also obviously wants you, to think about someone you have confused feelings about, who obviously wants you. She told Cole Archer was just a friend, when she already sorted out in past posts that there was more between them.
    Argh.
    Ultimately the learning and growing up factor of EVERYTHING that transpired in her life thus far was, what? 15%?
    i have said a million times that personally, I like Evan a lot, but prefer Archer, but I can see that long term, those two could never happen. I think Evan has the endless, untiring patience she needs.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Reagan’s head is totally messed up. She doesn’t know which way is up and she’s totally running away. At least for a little while. Cole loves his daughter and always has. I’m glad he admitted he made a lot of mistakes. I think she needed to hear that. Sadly, is was almost too late. She’s trying to justify that she has no feelings for Archer so that makes him safe. She’s kidding herself.

      She hasn’t learned a lot yet. I hope she finally does. Archer is short on patience I think. Whereas Evan does have a huge supply. Maybe from dealing with Maribel. But he and Archer both see past the confused little girl – thank goodness because she would be in the looney bin otherwise. She does need to start taking control of her own life and stop blaming others or letting others make her decisions for her. I think she was well on that path before Avery came back into her life.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Noooooooooooooooo nooooooooooooooo noooooooooooooo. Reagan is killing me, Audrey! The advice Cole and Ryan gave her was sound, but she still isn’t listening to anyone. She’s thinking the right things when she asks herself the questions, but she’s coming to the wrong conclusion. I thought she might be maturing a bit, but this shows she still can’t reason things through properly. She’s falling into the same mistakes again.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Cole and Ryan both can see more clearly than Reagan. She is totally running and in denial and has convinced herself she is just taking a break. She does ask herself good questions but doesn’t want to deal with the hard answer so she takes the path of least resistance. Totally falling into the same mistakes. Hopefully she’ll get therapy and begin to realize she is the one that needs to take charge of her life.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh man… I hate to say that Reagan still hasn’t learned her lesson..! She’s so naïve and she still won’t listen to her father! I was also surprised that she didn’t pay attention to the “what your mother did to him” line because as far as Reagan knows, nothing happened between Evan and Avery – so this should grab her attention at least!
    My poor Evan!! 😭😭 I can’t stand seeing him suffer so much! Archer should just back off already! 😡

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I am going to throw a Christmas carol bone at you Audrey. Why not bring Avery back as a ghost? Avery has unfinished business… And Reagan, like Scrooge, needs some intervention. Yes Drama, Drama, Drama.
    The hour of the past. Delving into Averys motivation, her love hate relationship with her parents/guardians growing up. Her ties with her mafia boyfriend, her targeting a future veterinian, Cole, as an easy way to riches. Her post partem depression after she had the twins…..
    Hour of the present: What Avery and her accomplice did to Evan, Blackmail, Archers involvement with the organization, Archer killing Avery for good.
    hour of the Future: maybe the funeral of Ben and the mourning of the family in contrast with her cold corpse in the mortuary in San Myshuno as a Jane Doe. Avery giving her the keys to the endless ball and chains fettering her like Marleys ghost. Telling Reagan to forgive her and let her go. That Reagan cannot escape from the consequences of the decisions Reagan makes in the future. Reagan symbolically unlocks the fetters with the keys and says goodbye to her mom for the last time.
    Just like Scrooge, Reagan can turn things around with Dannie, Archer, Evan, et all. Maybe have Coles dog say new beginnings everyone as Tiny Tim from Christms Carol.
    But this is your interesting story, am kept riveted to see what will happen to Reagan next.
    Thank you for the chapters and the creativity it gives me from reading it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s awesome! ❤️ The ghost of mothers past, present and future! The best part has to be Cole’s dog saying New Beginnings everyone! 😂😂😂. I’m so glad you are enjoying even if we don’t get a talking dog! ❤️❤️❤️.

      Reagan DOES indeed have a lot of ghosts haunting her that she needs to deal with. I think her attempt to include her father in her plans, even if it was really just to get his blessing, was a step in the right direction. But she is running. So….yes, things will happen. 🤷‍♀️

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  9. Reagan is still such a mess! I’m glad she was able to get some closure with her dad in this one ❤️ That was great to see!

    But she’s still running from her problems instead of trying to face them. Poor Evan. If she would just finally give him a chance to talk to her and explain, maybe she’d feel differently… or at least not be running off with Archer.

    I know that he’s what feels “safe” right now, but I’m hoping that she can move past this soon and open her eyes to the fact that she’s gotta talk to Evan! But I’m afraid going away with Archer is just going to push her even further into his arms 😬

    #TeamEvan #ReaganStopRunning

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes. Reagan and her father are starting to find their way back. ❤️

      But yes, she’s still running. And she soooo needs to talk to Evan. She has no idea what that poor man has been through. Archer has no baggage as far as she knows and she’s pretending they are still just friends. Wonder how long that’s gonna last and she does cross the line to more.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Honestly what’s wrong with Rea. Any other person would try to stick as close as possible to their father that almost got killed, even more so if they’d feel guilty to be the cause of it, but she runs away. Even worse, with master manipulator Archer.

    Also that “dinner in a month” promise to Evan sounds suspiciously much like what everyone tells you when they want to break up but don’t have the courage to actually do it.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Clearly it’s in Reagan’s nature to always head in the wrong direction. Her naivety about Archer is giving me a headache. What Archer does screams ‘wannabe more than a friend’ on miles. I can’t with her right now.
    Looks like you’ll make me like Cole after all. He was 100% tolerable when he was lounging on that couch with his dogs. I can totally stand that Cole who seems to have finally acquired wisdom and humility. And all it took was a stray bullet. Gonna 100% recommend this cure to future generations if they act illogical and crazy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Reagan’s totally not thinking logically. She’s still trying to make things be what she wants them….

      Cole. He did finally realize he was a dick. And acted irrationally and he is so trying to tell his daughter she is doing the same thing. But she wouldn’t listen. She wants to run and hide.

      Like

  12. Goddang.This girl is a mess. 😦 Still after it’s said na done, she has a looooong road ahead until she can finally be healthy again.And by healthy, I mean, being able to walk on her two feet. Clinging to Archer is fine and all, when you’re recoverring from some deep trauma, but continuing to depended on him to feel ”safe” after several months have passed would be troublesome.

    I can’t say she should just ”suck it up and deal with it” since everyperson delas with this in a certain way, but she shoudln’t use this approach she’s using for now for too long.

    Again, she *does* need help to process everything, but it ain’t Archer nor Evan. She needs a theraphist, and I feel as thought she’s filling that role with the guys in her life. Which, ain’t helthy, since, you know, they have some utter motive that can get *very* emotional depending on the situation.

    Awww Cole. Finally admitting you did some nasty stuff. ALl it took was being almost killed by your crazy ex-wife. Truly wonderful.On a more serious note, I’m glad Cole has forgiven her, at least now he can give and receive the love he has been putting out for the twins in all thoses years he raised them.

    Evan should take this time to try and fix himself too. Yeah, you love her and all, but boy, you got your own stuff to deal with. Slowlyy, but surely, go back into some nicer mental health position (something I’m heck of sure Evan isn’t in right now), so, when she comes back, you’re *also* A-Ok (Or at least good enought…).

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    • Reagan is a mess and is definitely clinging to Archer for way too long. She needs therapy to help her. I hope since she’s doing this he might push her that way. Otherwise she will continue to depend on him.

      Why did he almost die to come to those realizations. Cole would never not forgive her even if he didn’t shoulder some of the guilt. They are definitely on the road to healing.

      Evan very much needs his own therapy. If he wants to deal with Reagan’s stuff he needs to deal with his first. 💔

      Like

  13. Pingback: Chapter 3.50 – Taj Mahal | New Beginnings

  14. Here we go….Reagan running, everyone trying to warn her and she is not listening. And this idea of running away…does she not realize those problems will be there when she gets back? I’ve been in a situation where I thought the answer was to run, but that solves nothing, in fact it just creates more problems. Problems are just part of life, pain is apart of life and Reagan is doing her damnedest not to deal with any of it, and running from her support system. Archer I don’t think is dangerous, but he is controlling and while he means well, he does have an agenda. So she is leaving a strong support system (despite Dannie) and into a not so stable support system.

    Liked by 1 person

    • 100% Agree. She is trying to run from her problems and only created more. She left the best support system she could have with her family who has always been there for her simply because it was painful and she felt guilty.

      Archer has an agenda and he’s talked himself into believing he’s the best thing for her when he knows she’s the best thing for him…. but it doesn’t always go both ways. He’s going to try to help her, no doubt, but isolating her from her family wasn’t a good move.

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  15. THANK U FOR THE APOLOGY COLE, IT MEAN A LOT TO ME
    er, Reagan.

    I am thinking that his is not a very good idea, Reagan, butt far be it from me to contradict your master, er, roommate? Creepy bodyguard? What even is Archer at this point??
    Life coach? O..o

    Liked by 2 people

  16. OMFG. From one manipulative bitch to another.
    She needs to listen to what EVERYONE is saying. Well, everyone but Archer. I don’t wanna even capitalize his name anymore. archer. Cuz he’s that low.
    Sure, I get it. In his mind, he loves Reagan. But HE LEFT HER. And he never bothered looking her up once he got settled. Yeah, he was in undercover work, but it was still some time after he got his desk job that he looked her up. Did he honestly expect her to fall into his arms again? Who the fuck does he think he is? God’s gift to women? To Reagan? And this whole “move away from your problems to make them get better” is BULLSHIT.
    *hyperventilates*
    *storms off swearing*
    I need a minute. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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