A Heart of Gold for Somewhere in Time…Somewhere in The Present She Will Find Him.

Anticipation twists in my stomach as I take my seat my chair squeaks as I ease my withered body down my eyes darting around the room as I scan each face that passes through the door. I wince as my frustrated groan raises a few curious glances from the students around me I bit back a smile when some just roll their eyes whispering bitterly to their neighbors about me oblivious to the fact that I still have excellent hearing even at my age. I sigh softly as I wait in the darkness my only comfort was the familiar warmth in my fingers as I take the watch from my pocket knowing full well that my surroundings prevented me from checking the time.

"Almost my love." I whisper dropping my voice as the seats ahead of me of become filled. I let my eyes drift again looking at nothing as my fingers traced invisible patterns on the golden surface as I reflexively tightening my grip on my only solid reminder that the man of my dreams was, in fact, real as more seats became filled…it was then as I sat there eyes closed surrounded by the chatter of the young people around me my hand skimming over the remains of my heart as it ticked softly in my lap that I felt his presence in my life once again.

He looks exactly as I remember if not better than the man from my memories if such a thing could even be possible. I had to concentrate on my breathing, my heart pounds against my ribs as his sea blue gaze sweeps over me his face splitting into one of his breathtaking smiles as he moves closer to me just as he had by the lake the afternoon he had first walked into my life. 'God he knows.' The thought is just a whisper in my mind as he continues forward that heart melting smile still on his lips.

"Oh, I'm so sorry Miss." His hands brush my neck as he catches himself on my chair having no doubt tripped over the empty one beside me in his hast. "Are you alright?" he asked worried at my sharp intake of breath squinting into the blackness to see my face the hand that was not still firmly gripping the back of my chair reaching toward me when I hadn't answered him. 'Always the gentleman.' I smile at him through the darkness nodding my replay as my voice was lost by his touch on my neck. "Well enjoy the play." He said finally releasing my chair as he straitens himself before moving on. I drop my gaze from his retreating back. 'He can't know because we have not met yet.' I give a weak sight as I continue tracing the cover of his watch trying to ignore the ache in my chest as my mind pulls me away…away to nothing but the feel of his touch on my skin.

The lights flash above me pulling my attention back to the cramped theater around me. I blink away the wetness in my eyes as he takes his seat only two rows ahead of my own the lights from the stage outlining him perfectly as he turns to speak to the woman at his side.

Jealously races through me when she leans into him, lingering too long for my liking but my fury in quickly erased as the kiss brings another of his heart stopping smiles before the curtains finally part signaling the beginning of his play.

After the performance ends I remain in my seat my eyes never leaving him as he rises from his chair. 'It was as if he had written each scene just for me.' The actress within me sutures as I continue to watch the playwright who ruled my heart as I waited for my chance to speak to him. He must have felt my gaze upon him as he moved around the room accepting congratulations from the remaining people separating us. I couldn't help by laugh softly as his fleeting glances in my direction became more frequent the terror growing more pronounced with each one. I took a deep breath to clear my head getting to my feet as the group around him closes as the cake was brought out finally pulling his attention away from me.

'Time for one last performance of the great Elise McKenna.' The words seem to echo in my mind as I take a shaking step toward him.

The crowd parts as I approach my heart beating louder and faster in my ears as I move mesmerized by his very presents as if our previous encounter before the play had not even occurred.

"Let's not cut the masks lets save those for last." He was saying as my hand reaches toward him rested briefly on his back "Uhm?" he asks as he turns into me.

There is nothing but shock in his eyes as he registers my closeness I take one quick breath to mask my pain as I take his right hand in both of my own pressing my heart into the warm frozen finger of the only man it would forever belong to curling them around it while he continues to gaze unseeing back at me with those sea blue eyes I have dreamed of for so many years.

I pause for a heartbeat savoring the feeling of his hand in mine as I such for the words that would make him understand "Come Back to me." My plea comes in a hushed broken whisper as I struggle against the tears as I pour all that is left of me; my years of pain, my fear, and all of my love into those four simple words. I meet his fearful gaze with a searching one of my own as if I could simply will him into realizing who I am and how much I love him.

He blinks as I relies him forcing myself to move away ignoring the whispers as I made my exit. I pause as his shaking voice reaches me my hand on the door "I have no idea." He was saying answering a question I had not heard in my hast to leave "I have never saw her in my life." I find my way to my waiting car in a haze of pain as I hear the truth of his words with each step I take.

I do not answer Arthur's worried stare as I slide into the protection of the limousine letting a single tear fall onto the pavement before he closes the door behind me.

I make my way to my room in a daze thankful that I had cried myself out on the way so I would not alarm anyone. My only thoughts center on the man I had just left….Richard Collier. I lean against the door for support as my memories overwhelm every one of my senses. 'My Richard.' I can't help but smile as Laura enters from the side door ahead of me as I cross the room.

"How was the play?" she asked excitedly as I pass her "Did you enjoy it?" she asked when I didn't answer. I wanted to spin around in shock at her vague question 'Why would I do anything but enjoy it?' I wanted to say my voice becoming louder than my normal hushed tone she was used to hearing from me. 'I would always love anything my Richard writes because he is the most astounding writer I have ever known.' But I do not turn, I do not even acknowledge she has spoken to me as I reach the white folding door that leads to my sitting room closing it swiftly behind me. "Are you alright?" Laura's frightened voice sounds from the next room but I still remain silent as I turn the lights on my eyes focusing on nothing as I open the lid of our music box letting the melody of my loves favorite song wash over me as I turn toward the window.

I take a fleeting glance out onto the lake that surrounds both the island and the hotel. I can feel the moisture in my eyes again as I watch the small boat glide slowly across the water as I sink into my rocking chair the program from the play, his play still held in my hand.

My fingers glide over his name as is I press page tightly in my chest imaging it was him, my Richard back in my arms again. My Richard the man who was everything to me just as I was to him my eyes drifted closed as I remembered the feel of his arms around me, remembering how he held me so close to him during our first and only night together as the last few bars of our melody filled the air around me.

I stopped rocking letting the memory of his smiling face me take me on, on to the place I knew I would become the Elise McKenna he loved once again. "Come back to me my darling Richard." I pleaded softly letting the white light around me envelop me whole "I'll be waiting for you."

The end