Today’s letter in the A to Z Challenge is “D.” I chose Dahlia. Last year was the first time I ever grew dahlias. The flower is beautiful. I stupidly didn’t dig the bulbs up last fall and hope against hope that they might have made it through our winter because it never got tremendously cold 🤞.
While the stories are linked, each is a standalone. However, if you’ve missed any and want to read them, you can catch up here.
Actions Speak Louder
Brian grins as he approaches me. His smile reminds me of a mischievous little boy, and I wonder exactly what he’s hiding behind his back. A foot away, he presents a pot with a blooming wine and white dahlia. My mouth drops open. It’s the most exquisite dahlia I’ve ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot.
I run my finger over the bumpy surface of petals. “One of yours?” I ask, looking up at him with a huge smile.
He nods. “What do you think?”
“It’s one of the most beautiful flowers I’ve ever seen,” I say. “Of any flower. It’s incredible.”
“Me and Christy named it Josephine,” he says.
My cheeks burn. I really doubt that his ex-, Christy wanted to call it “Josephine.” She’s never liked me. Brian and I were too close. She considered me to be the reason why she was his ex-. And maybe I was by the mere fact of existing.
“I’m honored,” I say. True words. No one has ever named anything after me much less a flower like this.
“Are you going to distribute it?” I ask.
“Nope. You’ll be the sole distributor,” he says.
I shake my head. “I appreciate—”
“I won’t take ‘no’ as an answer. I’ve wanted to do something special for you for a while. To show you . . .”
His words drift off causing me to look up into his vulnerable sea green eyes. He shakes his head, chuckles softly, before glancing off toward the greenhouse. “I still care, Josie. I hope one day you’ll see how much. That maybe—”
I press my forefinger against his lips to still his words. “Not just yet. Soon maybe.”
He kisses my finger. “You never loved Marcus.”
“You’re still working with Christy,” I say and then immediately wish I hadn’t. Such a childish direction for me to go in.
“But don’t fire her,” I add with what I hope is a believable laugh. “She’s good and what she does and an asset to your work.”
He nods. “Okay. Time I can give you. Plus, a dahlia.”
He walks away leaving me with Josephine the dahlia. Just when I thought my heart had been broken beyond all repair, it thumps loudly to assure me. “Oh, Josie, you never gave the really good guy a chance.”