Yesterday is Forever
Disclaimer; Popular and its characters are copyrighted to Touchstone. This story is for entertainment purposes only and no profit will be made from it. No infringement meant.
Pairing; Sam and Brooke always.
Dark eyes moist with tears gazed lovingly at the faded photograph in her trembling hand as memories flooded her tortured mind; images of soft, moist ruby lips, glowing looks of love from obsidian orbs that once reflected her pale face with reverence and adoration.
The name emerged from her thin, tired lips as the woman recalled her youth now twenty years hence a distant memory, when her days were golden, and all of her whims were granted by a doting father who adored her, and at night she rested in the slender arms of a stunning, beguiling beauty who loved her beyond measure.
"I wish I could go back again," the woman shrouded in black whispered as her soul continued to drown in abject melancholy.
"Did madam say something?" the chauffeur asked, his head whipping up from the road at the sound of her muffled whisper.
"No," the woman dressed in sadness replied quietly, "I was just talking to myself."
"Does madam desire to go around the park once more?"
"Just go to the address that I gave you when we set out," the woman replied.
"Has madam informed master Josh that we are driving so far away?"
"No, James. This is a private matter that doesn't concern my husband. Understand?"
"You are not to speak of this to anyone, James. Not anyone."
"I will do as madam directs me to."
"Good. Then take me to that address."
"As madam desires," James replied mechanically as he turned the wheel of the limousine onto the expressway and headed north. "The trip will take twenty minutes, madam."
"Fine," the woman replied curtly as she turned her gaze out to the window of the car door beside her.
She couldn't complain about her life in any sense. She had married right out of highschool to her old highschool sweetheart Josh Ford. She had studied something easy and useless in college just to satisfy her inner feminist tendencies, yet still be old fashioned enough to be a wifely woman to an up and coming attorney who soon began to rise in the local political scene of Santa Ana. The years had rushed by her in what seemed at warp speed, and in those hazy days she had given birth to a son that grew up with nannies and boarding schools so that she was only technically his mother but never possessed his affection. The boy had become a man and had quietly slipped away from her life never calling her mom with love or giving her a hug. Now the man she called son was an engineer working on government projects somewhere in Asia, making a life for himself which she would never be a part of. The husband that she had submitted to, whose career she had nourished so patiently, who had cheated on her countless times, and eventually grew apart from her was now the mayor of Santa Ana and eyeing a seat in the state senate.
"Its just as well that he have a mistress," the woman said to herself, "saves me from having sex with him. I really don't like having him touch me anyway." As far as she could recall she never really did like having sex with Josh, but she did it because it was the accepted thing, the dutiful womanly thing to do and it pleased her wealthy father who had set up the match. "I can't believe that I ever let myself fall into that trap," she huffed, "an arranged marriage in that day and age?"
The year and date were still burned into her memory;
August 23rd, 2001. That was the date of her marriage when she had gone from being golden debutante Brooke McQueen to being socialite wife of promising Josh Ford Williams the 3rd. That day of her new life, dressed in her flowing white wedding dress, looking like a springtime goddess as she took her vows at the altar of Trinity Baptist Church, standing across from her sweetheart, Josh who smiled tenderly at her, and looked at her with intensity, her own gaze wandered away to another pair of eyes a few feet away; those of a young woman who stood in the front row of the congregation, and the first love that she had ever truly known.
"Sam," the woman said the name slowly, enunciating it firmly against her tongue as if she were kissing the person it belonged to, "I wish...oh how I wish."
Once again the woman returned to her painful memories as she recalled the fateful day that she ended the only real dream of love that she had ever possessed in her entire life. A smile came unwillingly as Brooke recalled the two years that she had spent in the company of her step-sister Samantha, who's mom Jane, a gentle soul had married her forlorn father Mike. "Those two made a great pair," the woman sighed recalling that both her stepmother and father were long deceased.
"Almost all of them are gone," she said sadly, "Nicole died of breast cancer last year. Mary Cherry was killed in a plane crash on her way to Canada to get divorced five years ago. Popita died twenty years ago when she went overseas with the Navy. Carmen died of a drug overdose ten years ago, and Lilly was murdered when she went to Indonesia with the Peace Corps. All of them except Harrison who simply disappeared after we all graduated from Kennedy." The woman with a soul besieged by years of regret sighed again, "those were the best years of my life and they are gone forever. They were my yesterday, and I can't go back. I can't go back and change them. So I guess its true. Yesterdays are forever."
She was wealthy, married to a powerful man, and lived in a huge mansion. She had all of her whims fulfilled, ate the best gourmet foods, wore the most expensive clothes, traveled to the farthest reaches of the earth. Yet with all of her luxuries, Mrs. Brooke Ford could not find peace or contentment. She was empty, and seeking consolation in a distant past that now returned to her in vivid, painful, burning images that left her heart raw with guilt and repentance. "I can still remember the day that I broke her heart." A single tear ran down from her left eyes, traversing the invisible path other tears had trekked many times before only to dry up on the curve of her pale cheek. "I so wish that I could go back."
The woman held back her urge to cry as her mind seemed to become a huge, white screen where blurry images formed until they achieved clarity that startled her with their realism. She found herself seated in the first row of her silent, private theater, as she watched her past unfold before her upon the giant screen;
"It was mid June. The day was sunny. I was in the garden, in the back of our home. I could feel the breeze blowing gently on my face. I was waiting for Sam to come out to the back. I had left her a message on her cell phone to meet me there. I had to tell her something important." More tears fell from the woman's eyes as she kept remembering, "that was the biggest mistake that I made in my entire life."
Brooke could still recall the garden at the back of her house; "the flowers were in full bloom. There were a row of teal roses on the far edge of the yard. There was a row of marigolds and pansies to the left edge. There were gardenias on the bushes next to the patio door. Sam loved gardenias, and she tended to those bushes like they were gods."
The mention of the name brought an ache to the woman's heart, "I was so cruel. I broke her heart. And I never even apologized."
Brooke recalled that last day that she had seen Sam privately in the patio garden. The girl had come through the patio door, a vision of all the loveliness in the world, "she was wearing a tight, short black dress. She had the smallest waist in the entire world. I always thought that she would break in two. I loved her cleavage; she looked like those old movie sirens from the sixties with the full, pouty lips and the firm breasts bouncing lightly enough to drive any man wild with lust. She certainly had a way of making me hornier than a wild bull." Brooke laughed lightly which startled her driver to speak to her once more.
"Is madam well?"
Once more the tired woman began to reminisce. "That day was our graduation day. We were free from Kennedy forever. Sam was wearing high heeled black pumps which matched her black dress. Her hair was long and wild, so thick that I always loved to run my fingers through it. She had the most delicate, pale skin, without a mark anywhere on her body. I was never much into tatoos and forbade her to get one. She wanted to put my name on her inner thigh. Oh I thought she was insane. But I can remember she was wearing clear lip gloss because her lips were already so red she didn't need to color them. I loved to bite her lips when I kissed her; they were so flexible, so plush, just like the rest of her..." Memories of the girl's warm, soft body pressed to her own on countless nights flooded Brooke's mind as a faint spasm of desire ran through her, "wow. I can't believe I still get horny thinking of her. I certainly don't feel that way about Josh. I never did. I just thought that I did. And I chose him over her. I broke her heart."
A faint memory of a silky voice filled with panic and pain returned to Brooke from the dark vault of her past; "Brooke...don't say that. How can you tell me that you don't love me?"
"I don't love you Sam. I never did."
"Why?" Sam's beautiful, finely etched features were twisted with pain, "how could you do this to me? What about our..."
"It was all a mistake. I never loved you Sam. I just had to make sure that I wasn't a..."
"I was just an experiment for you?"
"I never would have believed it," Sam sighed heavily as she tried to recover her composure, "I loved you so much. No one will ever love you as much Brooke. No one."
"I'm sorry Sam."
"No you aren't Brooke. But maybe someday you will be." Then Sam turned away and began to walk away, but she paused, "Brooke?"
"Didn't you feel anything at all for me?"
"No." The woman had answered quickly, dryly and simply.
"Oh." The girl had sighed audibly, then hung her head as she turned and walked back into the house. From that day on she and Brooke never spoke again. Sam avoided her by spending time with her friends Lilly and Carmen. Then Sam had left Brooke's life forever to attend college in France. The girl had attended Brooke's wedding out of courtesy to her step-father Mike and her mom Jane, and even some inkling of friendship to Brooke, but had left quickly after the wedding ceremony without saying goodbye to the bride. "She was gone like a sudden breeze."
Brooke often returned to that garden in her mind. She would be standing among the roses, aged in her fifties, bent with sorrow and repentance, draped in black, standing before a retreating, young Samantha. Brooke would call out to her in pain and guilt. "Sam please come back. Don't go please. Sam don't go."
But Sam wouldn't hear Brooke's faded pleas and would walk away into a settling mist that would vanish once it had engulfed her slender form. Then Brooke would be left behind, alone in the garden of her former youth with a wilted heart, yearning to return to her yesterdays. "But yesterday is forever. Forever into death and oblivion."
"We're here madam."
The driver's voice startled Brooke out of her doomed revelry as she looked up to see that the car was turning off the highway and into Gold Gate's Cemetery.
"Do we drive directly to the grave?"
"Yes. Please James. Don't park too close by. I want to be alone at the grave for a few minutes."
Brooke watched the rows of grave out of her window; the quiet scenery of green grass and tall trees of the pleasant cemetery that she visited every year on the anniversary of Samantha's death.
"We are here madam," James said as he positioned the shiny black limousine he drove on the side of a tall hedge. Then the elegantly clad in gray driver got out of the car, quickly went around the side and opened the door of the car for his lady.
"Thank you James," Brooke replied as she accepted the hand that James extended to her as he helped her tired, lanky frame get out of the back seat.
"I'll be here waiting, madam."
"Alright," Brooke said as she turned, and walked along the hedge to a lone gravestone that lay at the foot of a tall oak. "Sam..."
Brooke stood at the foot of a worn headstone that bore bold letters on as the only testament of a young life lived; "Samantha McPherson, September 5th, 1983- February 3rd, 2008."
"Hi Sam," Brooke smiled and spoke as if the girl of her dreams was actually standing before her, "you actually got a very good spot here. Nice breeze and shade."
Brooke bent her tall frame so that she now knelt at the edge of the grave, and briskly began to tear weeds from the overgrown grass with her gloved hand, "the service at this place is just awful. Your grave needs a trim." The tired woman chuckled, "I'm going to pay for special service to make sure you don't go around looking messy. I can still remember what an awful dresser you were sometimes!"
Brooke opened her coat and delicately took out a small bundle which she unwrapped with great care to reveal a small bouquet of gardenias, "I had these flown in specially for today. I can still recall how much you loved them."
Brooke lowered her head, "Sam...I...I..." the woman began to sob quietly as she tried to spill the bitter contents of her heart to a silent listener who could no longer respond, "you once said that I would one day regret what I did to you. Well you were right. It took me a long time to understand how much I hurt you."
Brooke laid the flowers gently at the edge of the headstone, then took off her gray glove so that she could run her trembling fingers along the etched letters that spelled Sam's name. "I didn't understand when you said those awful words to me. I was empty then. But I understood in time. I didn't love you then. But I fell in love with you slowly, through the passing days when I realized that my marriage was empty, that I was repulsed by my husband's touch. I fell deeper in love with you every time Josh would mistreat me, or when I was in labor with a child I didn't really want. I even envied you when you went off to chase your dreams of being a journalist and a writer. I read all of the stories of yours that appeared in the newspapers. I bought the books that you wrote. I watched you on television when you were an anchorwoman. I even imagined that I was traveling with you all over the world on incredible adventures. I was so proud of you Sammy. I told everyone that you were my sister. I even hated you when I found out you had married some French baron overseas. I was so jealous because I couldn't believe that you could ever fall in love again. In my stupid little mind you would always only love me alone. But you found happiness again even if it was short lived. I cried so hard when you died in that stupid war in India that your newspaper sent you to cover. I haven't stopped crying for you. There's no more blood in my heart Sam. Its all gone in my tears."
Yet there were tears spilling from her hazel eyes as Brooke literally collapsed onto Sam's grave and buried her pale face in the soft, plush grass that covered the mound under which was buried the tired woman's only dream of happiness, "I was such a fool Sammy. I wish I could tell you how much I yearn for you. I dream that I'm lying on top of you at night. In dreams I make love to you. I kiss you and touch you. Then I wake up to find that I'm alone in a huge house with only servants to speak to. I don't even know my own son. My husband is a stranger who lives at his office, and has convenient sex with his secretary, which makes me glad cause I can't stand him."
Brooke felt her heart pounding, her agony building up more and more, "I fell in love with your soft touch, with the memory of your words of love and devotion. I kept your letters and poems to me hidden in my things. I've read them over and over a million times in twenty, long years. I've cried so hard, so often over your letters that the words on them are blurred but I know them by heart Sammy. And I love you so much now Sam. Every day my love for you grows deeper and more desperate. And I wish that I could visit yesterday again. I wish that we could start over but its too late." Brooke could no longer control herself as she began to sob wildly, loudly so that she heard the firm steps of her chauffeur approach her.
Brooke lifted herself a bit from her position on the ground, "I'm alright James."
"We should return home, madam. You are not feeling well."
"Yes madam. Home to your mansion. To the Ford Estate."
"That's not my home James. That's my damn grave. This small patch of earth right under me is my home. This is where my heart is buried."
"It will do you no good at all to cry madam. Tears cannot resurrect the dead."
"I suppose," Brooke said in defeat as she sat up and dried her tears with her other, still gloved hand. "Yes. You are so right, James. The dead can't hear us anymore."
"Yes madam," the driver said dutifully as he held out his strong hand to the wife of his employer, and helped her to her feet once more. "I'll bring the car around right away."
"Give me a minute to say goodbye James!"
"Yes of course madam," James said with a bow as he stepped back and walked away."
Brooke turned and looked down at the grave, her eyes still brimming with tears as her fingers lightly brushed the top of the headstone, "bye Sammy. I'll be back to see you soon okay? I think I might move close by so that I can come here to see you more often. I'm thinking it might be a good time to tell Josh I want a divorce. Maybe I might even try to patch things up with my son Jake. Who knows? We might even become friends..."
Brooke grew silent for a moment, "but to me real luck will be when I see you again someday..."
Brooke's revelry was interrupted by two, arguing female voices. The woman raised her head and was surprised to see two young teenage girls passing her by. Brooke marveled greatly at the sight of the girls because they reminded her of Sam and herself when they were that age.
"Brittany! I swear you are such a pain in the ass! I told you to stay away from my best friend Henry!" the first girl said angrily. Brooke couldn't stop staring at her. The girl was about 5'8", slender yet voluptuous, with long, wild brown hair, long curvaceous legs peeking from under her short, black skirt, full ruby lips poised on the verge of a sexy pout, deep dark, fiery eyes that glowed intensely, "I don't want you dating him!"
"I don't care what you think Serena!" the other girl said as she stood her tall, almost six foot, lean, lanky frame before her apparent nemesis, "you don't own him!"
"You're such a bitch, Brittany McWilliams. Its bad enough my dad wants to marry your mom! Now I have to watch you steal all my friends too!"
"I don't want my mom marrying your dad either Serena McNeil!" blond Brittany replied angrily as she surveyed her companion with a look of disgust in her hazel eyes, "my stomach turns when I think you're going to be my step-sister!"
"Well at least we agree on that," Serena exclaimed loudly, "that is exactly how I feel, and I feel the same when I read those awful things you say about me and my cheerleading squad in your stupid little newspaper!"
"Cheerleading is ridiculous!" Brittany countered as she stood her full height, towering over shorter Serena.
"Your newspaper is nothing but a mediocre rag!" Serena blasted back.
"And you'll never make it as next year's prom queen of Kennedy Highschool!" Brittany stated firmly.
Serena looked up wordlessly at her apparent enemy and thorn in the side and suddenly started to cry, "why are you so mean to me? Why do you hate me so much?"
Brittany was stunned when she saw Serena weeping weakly before her so that her ire and rage died within her, "oh Sere...please don't cry," the tall, pretty blond stepped closer to the crying brunette, "I didn't mean to hurt you. I'm sorry that I'm so mean. Its just that I...I..."
"What?" Serena asked amid her sniffles, "what?"
For a moment Brooke found herself transported into the young Brittany's body which resembled her former, young self so much. With all of her might Brooke willed Brittany to speak the words that she knew were hidden in the girl's tender, quivering heart, "say it. Say it and mean it..."
"I...I love you Sere."
Brooke said the words silently, mouthing them as the girl said them, but in her heart of hearts Brooke said them to an eternally dormant Samantha.
"You love me?"
"Yeah," Brittany admitted quickly, "I'm just jealous all the time. That's why I'm always saying stupid things, and taking your friends away. I just don't want them around you. I...I want you for myself!"
"Oh...Brittany," Serena said softly as a smile appeared on her lips, "really?"
"Yeah. And I'm really, really glad that my mom is marrying your dad. That way I'll always have you around."
"You never told me..."
"Cause I'm a klutz sometimes. But I love you Serena. Do you think that maybe you..."
"Yes," the beautiful brunette replied breathlessly. "Oh Sere!" Brittany
couldn't help herself anymore as she lunged
forward and took the shorter girl firmly into her arms, "Sere..."
Brooke watched with deep pleasure as the girls kissed passionately on the lips. Then the tired woman turned away so as not to attract attention to herself. Brooke felt a surge of happiness rush through her as she thought of the two girls who were about to begin their lives together; "Its as if it was Sammy and me again... maybe... somewhere far away... somehow Sam and I will begin all over again... maybe." Brooke had a seed of hope in her heart as she walked along the hedge, away from Sam's grave, "goodbye Sammy."
"Home Mrs. Ford?"
"Yes James," Brooke said with a smile as she felt her heart filled with an unnameable hope, "home for now."
James helped Brooke into the back seat of the limousine, then went around to the front and got into the driver's seat of the car. James started up the engine and drove slowly out of the cemetery.
Brooke was smiling as she laid back against the seat and fell into a light sleep, somehow catching a faint voice that came to her like a distant breeze to caress her tired heart.
"I love you too Brooke."