Diane sat at the table, lost in thought. The birds chirped merrily outside the window. The breeze blew the curtains into the room, sucking them back into the frame just as quickly. Diane smiled to herself. It's as if the house was breathing. She suddenly found herself drawing in a large breathe and exhaling slowly. I'm getting married...married...married. The pen in her hand stayed poised above the snowy, white paper. Guest list, written at the top, and nothing else. Carla Tortelli was the first person who popped into her mind as she contemplated their guest list. She and Carla had had a tumultuous relationship, at best, when Diane had worked at Cheers. Such a bitter little spitfire, that woman. Time for a new mental subject. Just the thought of opening that can of worms had Diane in an intestinal conundrum. She knew it would come up eventually. Truth be told, Sam had yet to even mention Carla's name once since she'd been back in Boston. Was she still a waitress at Cheers? Carla and Sam were close and Diane knew the subject would be broached. She tried to mentally get out ahead of the situation, becoming emotionally prepared for the onslaught of feelings that may accompany said subject. Diane rolled her eyes at the empty room. Why am I thinking like this. For god's sake, it was almost an entire lifetime ago. Yet, some of Carla's retorts from the past still held a sting as if they had just spewed from her yesterday. Crazy, she thought, how we allow others to dictate our train of thought and penetrate our self-image.

A car pulled into the driveway. Diane recognized the sound of Sam's Vette. She giggled to herself. My stud muffin and his hot rod! She moved to the window, careful not to let him see her spying. He was still inside the car. Upon closer inspection, she could see that he was on the phone. Her heart literally felt warmer when he was the object of her attention. Like, she could feel the weight of the emotion his presence brought to her soul. It was like she was on some high-flying, magic carpet. She felt that age was relative, and truly, all that really exists, is this very moment. In this very moment, Diane felt alive and happy. She could feel the sensations of the beautiful weather, their lovely home and her handsome beau pulsing through her veins. Suddenly, she realized, it didn't matter what anyone said or did. She was in control of her own place in the world and no one could pull her from her reverie without her permission. Sam was on his way to the door. He barely got through the door when she had wrapped him in a huge, intense hug. She put her face in his neck and breathed in the essence of him, squeezing him tighter.

Sam: Hey there baby, what's up?

Diane: Nothing in particular, just wanted to envelop you momentarily. (pulls back to stare up at him) Do you mind?

Sam: Absolutely not! I love envelopment! Want to go upstairs and practice more envelopment? (grins sheepishly)

Diane: Too far. How bout the couch?

Sam: (laughing loudly) Woman! You are, what's that buzz word of yours, insatiable! Thank you!

They move to the couch and...envelop.

Diane hears what sounds like a faint buzzing. Slowly returning to reality in her mind, she opens her eyes. A smile spreads across her face as she notices she is trapped, pinned rather, in the crease of the couch. Not ready for the warm, snugly feeling to end, she closed her eyes again. Ugh, there goes that buzzing again. This time, Sam heard it. He reached under the blanket they shared and pulled out his phone. Diane glanced at the screen. CARLA was written next to a picture of several small children. Well, how's that for the law of attraction. I did that, she thought. The uncomfortable feelings she'd had earlier were gone. She suddenly realized that nothing could take her from her new state of being, ever. Sam tossed the phone on the coffee table and turned back to her. They lay there in silence for several minutes, soaking in the love and tenderness of their close proximity.

Sam: You know, I like this envelopment feature of yours. In fact, I think we should practice it several times a day.

Diane: (laughs aloud) Sounds like a plan to me. Speaking of plans, what is yours for the day?

Sam: Well, several things, actually. I need to go to the bar and help Woody with a few things.

Diane: What kind of things? Can I help?

Sam: (kisses the top of her head) Sure! Want to come with?

Diane: I don't know, do I? What sorts of things does Woody need help with?

Sam: Diane, it's Woody, Woody Boyd. He's still the same child-minded soul you knew back then, except, a little wittier. His time in politics was short-lived, yet beneficial in many ways. The boy from Indiana became a man with the boy from Indiana trapped inside. Kelly's family took him under their wing, so to speak, and he ran with it for a while.

Diane: I'm embarrassed to say that I really didn't believe him when he told me about being elected, back then. (shaking her head)

Sam: Kind of scary when you think about it, huh? But, after his first term, that was it. He came back to Cheers and jumped behind the bar like no time had passed.

Diane: How did that resonate with the in-laws?

Sam: Well, I don't think Kelly minded in the least. She and Woody are both products of their upbringing. They kind of just shrug their shoulders and skip along their merry way. It really must be a blissful kind of existence, if you think about it. (chuckles)

Diane: Yes, quite. So, I saw Carla phoned?

Sam: Yes, love. I'm afraid Norm or Cliff, or a combination of Norm and Cliff, let the cat out of the bag about our upcoming nuptials.

Diane: I see. How do you think that went over?

Sam: Oh, I don't know. Probably alright. Carla has mellowed with age, or been beaten down by sheer exhaustion. I think she has like 22 grandchildren now?

Diane: Holy Moly! Really!

Sam: Well, she had eight children, so it's not that big of a jump.

Diane: Does she still work at Cheers?

Sam: Only part time now, or if we have a large party or event she will come in and help.

Diane: I see. How much time do you spend at Cheers these days?

Sam: Barely any during the week. I give Woody time off when he needs it. The weekend evenings are pretty busy. There is another bar tender, Gary.

Diane: Gary?

Sam: Oh! I forgot you don't know! Remember Gary's Old Town Tavern?

Diane: You mean that pompous, egotistical

Sam: Yep, that's the one! He lost his bar during the recession, the second bar, that is. The first one was "accidently" bulldozed to the ground. The second time, he had too many eggs in one financial basket, so-to-speak.

Diane: So he works for you now?

Sam: He does. Does an amazing job for us too. Princeton grad and all that, remember?

Diane: Oh yes, I remember. How could I forget? You almost traded me in for some Tawney bimbo, over a game of bowling.

Sam: Yikes, woman, you have an amazing memory for detail.

Diane: Yes, unfortunately, sometimes it is a blessing, mostly a curse. (chuckles)

Sam: (leans in to kiss her) You ready to get up, or are we still? (front door opens, Shea comes in)

Shea: Hello lovebirds! Whatcha doin?

Sam: Enveloping. You?

Shea: ( giggles) Just stopped home for some lunch and visit with mother about a proposition. Well, now I can say mother and father. (smiles, looking back and forth between them) We would like to move into the apartment above the coffee shop.

Diane: You don't want to live here?

Shea: Out of respect for your privacy, no, we don't. You already have Mary and Betty here, mother. You and Sam need some form of privacy.

Diane: I think it's a wonderful idea. Not because we need privacy, but because you will be so close to school. In the winter especially, you can walk if it's too dangerous to drive.

Shea: Yes! Then, someday, we will move back here and have lots of babies for you to squeeze!

Diane: (laughing) Okay! One day at a time sweet girl!

Sam: That's when we'll move into the apartment!

Shea: How are the wedding plans coming along?

Diane: Well I was actually starting on the guest list today. Shouldn't be too cumbersome. It's just going to be an intimate group, here at the house.

Shea: Oh mother! Yes! You can walk down the stairs and into the living room. We can drape ivy on the railing and the banister! We...

Sam: Oh boy. Time to exit stage left!

Shea: What? Why?

Diane: Sam isn't really into wedding planning, Shea.

Sam: Believe me, you don't want me involved. How bout I just stand up in front and look spectacularly dashing in my tux?

Diane: (wraps her arms around Sam) Darling, you look spectacular in anything. (kisses)

Shea: Hello? You two are so funny! Seventy year old love birds. Too cute to handle. (grabs her jacket and heads for the door) I gotta go meet Luke at the university. We can talk more about the apartment at dinner?

Sam: Sounds great. Hey, If you and Luke want to meet up later, your mom and I are going to be at Cheers helping Woody for a bit. You can stop there and we could go get some ice cream?

Shea: Cheers huh? You ready for that mom?

Diane: What do you mean darling? Why wouldn't I be?

Shea: Oh nothing, just that you are a sap when it comes to nostalgia. Is that Carla chick going to be there?

Sam: I'm not sure if she's working today or not. Either way, it will be fine.

Shea: Yes. We will stop by. I've been curious to see my mother's old haunts. Might as well start with the biggest one. (laughs, blowing a kiss as she exits)

Diane: Why do I all of the sudden have butterflies?

Sam: Anyone would have a bit of anxiety over this kind of situation. Just keep in mind, you are happy. Nothing can shake that from us, ever. That's all that matters from here on out, happiness.

Diane: Well, let's go. The funnest part is going to be getting in and out of your car. We are going to look cliché, two old souls cruising around in their corvette.

Sam: You know, I was actually on the phone with a potential buyer when I got here.

Diane: Oh Sam! I was kidding! Why would you want to sell your baby. It's a classic!

Sam: Because, I look cliche, an old timer cruising around in a corvette. (laughs) Besides, I live in Boston and I need a safer car that gets around all year.

Diane: Hmmmm. Do me a favor? Don't sell it yet. I want to look at the two of you together a while longer.

Sam: You got it , babe. Now, we should head out.

Diane: Just going to grab my phone so I can keep in touch with Mary and Betty. Should probably stop there and see if anyone wants ice cream. I'll meet you in the car.

Sam and Diane take a drive around Boston, reminiscing about the different places they had frequented back in the day. Diane felt the history of the city come alive again. The old brownstones, with their occupants busily selling their goods. She breathed in the blossoming tree fragrances filtering into the car. She rolled her window all the way down, letting her hand push against the air as they sped along. Happiness, she thought. Yes, that is all that mattered now. It's all that ever mattered, if she was being truthful. Why do human beings torture themselves trying to be something or someone they are not, when happiness can be so easily obtained? She put her head back and closed her eyes. Sam reached over and took her hand. She turned to look at him. Their eyes said everything. They pulled in front of Cheers. Diane took a deep breath.

Sam: You okay baby girl?

Diane: (laughs) Yes Sam, I'll make it. It's getting out of this car that worries me. You can just fall into it, but I think I may need a crane to get me out of it.

Sam: (laughs) Just sit tight. I'll be right over.

Diane: Oh god, don't let anybody walk by right now and watch this.

Sam: I told you. Senior citizens should act their age and not put themselves in such predicaments. (pulls her up from the car to the sidewalk)

Diane: (smiling) Well, that wasn't as difficult as I'd imagined. Wow, it still looks the same. (looks up and down at the outside of the bar and Melvilles)

Sam: Not much has changed. New sidewalk, new paint, same bricks and interior. A few new faces now and then. Shall we head in?

Diane: Sure! I'm anxious to see Woody.

They walked down the stairs to the little basement bar, hand in hand. Diane thought Cheers was a place of the past, but her life had come full circle…and here she was again. Nothing could alter her bliss. Nothing.

Carla: My oh my, as I live and breathe, I never expected this! Back in Boston for good I hear, huh Diane?

Diane: Hello Carla! Nice to see you again, and yes, I'll be running my mother's coffee and tea establishment. It's called...

Carla: Oh I'm familiar. I told Sam years ago, when he decided to move to the apartment there that he was nuts.

Sam: She thought I'd gone off the deep end and was moving there to keep the dream of us alive.

Carla: Looks like I wasn't too far off the mark there, was I Sam?

Diane: I can't believe how many years my mother was able to keep it a secret from me that Sam was her tenant.

Carla: (moves over and extends her hand to Diane) Listen Blonde, I know we've had our differences in the past, (Diane tries to interrupt), now, let me finish before you get your shorts in a knot. I just wanted to say that Sam is a new man. Now don't get me wrong, he wasn't depressed or anything, just, something was always a little, off. Since you've been back in the picture, I've noticed the changes in him. He's happy, really happy. The twinkle is back. I want to thank you for that. (Diane bends to hug her) Whoa, back off bleach ..I mean, Diane. I still got a bubble here.

Diane: Yes, of course, Carla, I understand. Thank you for the kind words.

Carla: Yeah, don't mention it. (Diane smiles) No, seriously, don't mention it. I'm afraid I'll have to deny it if you do, you know, I got a rep to protect. People see you bein, (acts like she's gagging) all nicey-nice, well they think you need to be that way all the time.

Diane: Oh! Good heavens, we couldn't have that, now could we. (moves toward the bar as Woody comes out of the office)

Woody: (runs around the bar toward Diane) Miss Chambers! It really is you! (wraps her in a hug)

Diane: Hello Woody, thank you, yes, I'm back in Boston. You haven't aged a bit! Sam says you and Gary run things now? How have you been?

Woody: Can't complain. Well I could, but who would I complain to? Myself? (laughs at his own joke)

Diane: How is Kelly?

Woody: She's great! She is an interior designer here in Boston.

Diane: Really? How interesting! Commercial or residential?

Woody: No, she doesn't do commercials, designs interiors I guess.

Diane: No, Woody, does she design businesses or homes?

Woody: Ah, just their interiors, you know, like the insides of places.

Diane: I see, Woody. (lord help us) That's wonderful, really!

Carla: No corn cob, she means...

Diane: It's fine Carla, it's not important. Woody, may I have a soda water please.

Woody: Right away Miss Chambers! Boy, it really is amazing having you back at Cheers again. Are you going to work here again?

Diane: No Woody, I'm going to have my hands full with the coffee shop my mother left me. I will be back to visit often though, especially after the wedding, when things settle down some.

Carla: Wedding? (rolls her eyes) So the barflies were serious?

Sam: (comes out of the office, hears Carla) Carla? You causing trouble out here?

Carla: No, no trouble. I just asked a question, Sam. I mean, when you get to this stage of the game, this late stage in the game, why bother? I mean, you can live together, even have a geriatric boink now and then, but marriage? I don't get the point.

Sam: Well Carla, the point is, I love this woman, I've always loved this woman and I always will. Being older only forces the point that we haven't a moment to waste.

Diane: We've shared a lot of life together and we have a beautiful daughter. It just seems natural to tie the knot, so-to-speak. Like we've been given a fresh slate from which to navigate the future.

Carla: Well, whatever floats your boat I guess. Anyway, if Sammy is happy, that's all that matters. Hey Sam, I'm gonna take off. Ant-ny needs a babysitter. Tell Woody I'll take the shift tomorrow night.

Sam: Okay Carla, have a good one.

Sam sits on the stool next to Diane. He puts his arm around her and kisses her on the cheek.

Sam: Well, how do you feel, being back here I mean?

Diane: A bit surreal, yet familiar and comforting at the same time. As I look around the place, I notice subtle differences, but for the most part, it is kind of like a time capsule. Especially the Geronimo picture up by the piano. Kind of chokes me up a bit, gives me flashbacks so strong that I can almost hear the Coach speaking or humming behind the bar, like he used to.

Sam: Oh I guarantee you, he is still here, making sure I toe the line. You know Coachie, always a safe place to fall, and I've done a lot of fallin through the years.

Diane: Its funny, concerning certain things in life, time really has no meaning. I could pick up an ordering pad, apron and pen and be off to the races like I was in my thirties again. You could hop behind the bar and fill my orders (she is staring into space, obviously reliving a past memory) just like you...

Sam: Hello in there...come back to me.

Diane: Oops, sorry bout that. Senior moment. (she smiles)

Sam: You hear from the kids yet?
Diane: Well, I think Shea and Luke were going to meet us here, but I can text them to meet somewhere else?

Sam: We can wait for them here and go upstairs for ice cream.

Diane: Sounds like a plan. I'm going to use the restroom quick.

Diane disappears into the bathroom, Shea and Luke enter Cheers. They take off their jackets and hang them on the coat rack by the door.

Shea: Hi papa! (trots down the stairs and hugs Sam, making eye contact with Woody as she does so)

Woody: Hey there Sam! No hugging the pretty ladies anymore! You're spoken for!

Sam: No, Woody, I'm allowed. Woody Boyd, this beautiful creature, is our daughter, Shea Elizabeth.

Woody: Hello there, Shea. I like your name. Wonder why she didn't name you Fenway, though.

Shea: Ha! That's funny, Woody! I guess it would have made more sense, huh. Well, it's a long story I'll tell you about it sometime. Where's mom?

Woody: Miss Chambers is in the ladies room.

Shea: (kisses Luke) I'm going to use the facilities as well, then I think we are going upstairs.

Shea joins her mother in the ladies room.

Shea: Wow mother, you were not exaggerating in the least when you described Woody to me. You know what he asked me?

Diane: I'm almost afraid to ask.

Shea: Well first of all he thought Sam was hitting on me, then he asked why you didn't name me Fenway.

Diane: Well that's because...

Shea: Yes, mother, I get it, obviously, the Red Socks play at Fenway and not Shea Stadium, it's just that, he said it. Seemed so intuitive, almost brilliant in a way.

Diane: With Woody, it's hit or miss. Usually a miss, but sometimes, he stops you in your tracks. Like the time he explained to Sam what a rhetorical question was. (Shea raises her eyebrows) Yes, I had the same look on my face as I listened to him explain, what really is a complex term, perfectly. I remember Sam had turned to me for confirmation. I had to chuckle and tell him Woody was exactly right in his definition of the word.

Shea: Wow, can you imagine being in that brain all of the time.

Diane: No, I can't. I just smile and thank the universe for the gift of people like Woody.

Shea: (laughs out loud) Yes mother, I agree!

Diane: I can't wait to meet his wife.

Shea: That will be interesting. We'll have them for dinner sometime, maybe?

Diane: Oh, I'm sure of it! These people are Sam's family, and I guess, in a crazy way, they are mine too. It's really kind of exciting, when you think of it. We brought our LA family to our Boston family.

Shea: So where is this Carla character?

Diane: She was called to grandma duty. You'll have to meet her next time.

Shea: Did you see her? How did it go?

Diane: Fine. Really, as expected, or maybe a little better than expected. I have a different perspective now, I guess. It's easier to handle a situation like that when you prepare yourself ahead of time.

Shea: Mother, you are a closet psychiatrist, I swear. (laughs)

Diane: Come on Shea, let's go before Sam thinks we fell in.

Shea: Oh he can sweat it a little. Make him think we're talkin about him.

Diane: He will come in here. The man has no boundaries. (giggles)

Sam: (knocking on the bathroom door) Come on! We need ice cream! You two done talking about us yet?

Diane: See, next time he won't knock. We better not poke the bear.

Shea: (laughs) Hold your horses, father!

Sam: You got two minutes and I'm coming in to get you!

Shea: Yeesh, you weren't kidding!

The foursome heads up the stairs to Melvilles for ice cream. Sitting in a rounded booth, the atmosphere is bustling and noisy with conversation. Diane excuses herself to call the coffee shop.

Diane: Oh hi Mary! Calling to see how things are going over there.

Mary: Just grand, Miss Diane! We had an excellent morning. Nearly out of pastries due to a large order, but the coffee and tea are holding up. We have had many requests for cold tea. We might want to change up the menu a little for summer.

Diane: Oh sure! I forgot. My mother left reference to the menu changes they've had in the past in the safe. There are a few different pastry orders as well. We are having ice cream at the restaurant above Cheers. It's called Melvilles. Would you like us to bring you some?

Mary: Sounds great! I'd like chocolate with raspberry sauce. (covers the phone) Betty, would you like ice cream?

Betty: Yes please! Hot fudge sundae!

Diane: You got it! See you soon!

Ice cream in hand, Sam and Diane head to the coffee shop. Upon arrival, they see that a huge truck has parked out front, taking up three parking spaces. The side of the truck, in large type, is printed, Santry and Sons Plumbing. There is water running out the front door and into the street. Mary is out front waving her arms as she sees Sam and Diane pull up.

Mary: Miss Diane! We have bursting pipe! The water, it run everywhere!

Diane: I see that Mary! Sam! What has happened?

Sam: Looks like a burst water pipe to me. Let's go around back, talk to Don.

Diane: Don?

Sam: Remember Rebecca?

Diane: Vaguely? From that evening at Melvilles.

Sam: Don is her husband.

Diane: Huh...coincodence?

Sam: Trustworthy.

Diane: I see...

They walked around the back of the shop and entered through the delivery door. There was water starting to enter the kitchen, but not as quickly as it was running out the front. A man was just backing out of the crawl space in the kitchen as they entered.

Sam: Hey Don. What's the damage?

Don: Oh! Hey there, Sam! Well, looks like you got a large crack in the water main here. Looks like tree roots have weakened the integrity of the pipe.

Sam: Yeah, I see that. Good thing you got to the root of the problem, Don...sorry, I had to say it.(laughing)

Don: Yeah that's a good one Sammy, haven't ever heard it...(not laughing, rolling eyes)

Diane: I see nothing humorous about this situation, Sam! (laughing)

Don: Happens all the time in these old buildings. Historical buildings, historical plumbing. (chuckles)

Hey, darlin, you want to bring me the sledge?

Rebecca: Sure baby, coming right up.

Rebecca enters carrying a very large sledge hammer. She stops in her tracks, staring back and forth between the laughing Sam and Diane.

Rebecca: Woah...have I just entered the twilight zone?

Sam: Nope, it's all real.

Diane: Hello, Rebecca. It's nice to meet you...again.

Rebecca: Yes, again...Sam? What is going on?

Sam: A pipe burst in the shop and is leaking water all over the floor.

Rebecca: Yes, Sam, I can see that. (rolls eyes) I mean here, between you and Diane.

Diane: It does probably look a little strange, after all these years.

Rebecca: (staring into space lost in thought) Strange...yes...years...Oh! (snaps back to reality) I'm sorry, what was I saying? I mean...

Sam: We are going to be married.

Rebecca: Married?! Well...Congratulations! Of course...married!

Diane: Would you like to come, Rebecca? You and your family? To our wedding?

Rebecca: Family, wedding...I'm sorry...It's just taking me a moment to wrap my head around this. Married, Sam? Wow...

Sam: Yeah, we figured it was probably about time.

Diane: (whispering in Sam's ear) Better wait to tell her about Shea, might just push her completely over the proverbial edge...

Don enters the room, carrying his clip board.

Diane: Well, Don, what's the damage?

Don: Not for sure on the exact amount, but I should be able to give you a ballpark. Gonna take about a week if you close the place. Longer if I have to work around people.

Diane: A week! Oh goodness!

Sam: Why so long, Don?

Don: Well, takes time for things like concrete to set. Seein as how your biggest issue seems to be in the middle of the walkway...

Sam: Ok Don! We'll shut her down.

Don: Thank you Sam! I'll get the boys on it today!

Diane: The boys?

Sam: Rebecca and Don have four sons, thus the Santry and Sons logo.

Diane: FOUR! Wow!

Sam: Well three of them anyway. The fourth, and youngest is a professional ballet dancer up in New York,

Diane: Ballet...?

Sam: Yep, broadway.

Diane: They must be very proud!

Sam: (chuckles) Well, now they are. Was quite the family joke for a while. Jake's a great guy. He takes his brother's ribbing pretty well. They really are very proud of him.

Diane: We will have to go and see him perform sometime.

Rebecca enters the room, making eye contact, first with Sam, then discretely with Diane. She steps over the dishevelment in the room to lessen the distance between the group.

Rebecca: So, a reunion of sorts, huh! (laughs uncomfortably)

Sam: Hey Rebecca! Since when have you been going on service calls?

Rebecca: Well, you know...every once in a while...

Sam: Yeah, when there is gossip in the air, Becky...

Rebecca: Sam! Don't you dare! That was a million years ago. (face) Okay! I confess! I just happened to stop by Cheers the other day and...

Sam: Uh huh, that's enough...

Diane clears her throat.

Diane: Hello Rebecca. Sam, would you mind giving us a few moments, alone? Please?

Sam: You got it! I'll wait for you by the guys.

Diane: (turning to face Rebecca) That is, if you have a few moments? Rebecca?

Rebecca: Ah, sure? What's on your mind?

Diane: I was hoping rather, you'd tell me what was on yours.

Rebecca: Fair enough. I have always had, in the wee back of my mind, a vision, almost a knowing, that we would meet again. In truth, I thought it would have been long before now, but...anyway, Diane, I'm beyond happy that you are back in Boston. Sam looks ten years younger. I'm sorry...

Diane: No! Thank you, Rebecca, really! I know Sam is very fond of your friendship, and, frankly, so am I. When I left...(tears)

Rebecca: Hey...no tears. Listen, there is something I always swore I'd tell you if we ever met up like this.

Diane: Seriously? You've like actually thought about this.

Rebecca: Yes, shhhhh, now listen up before I lose my nerve here! Diane, Sam has always, longed for you...

Diane: Oh, Rebecca, you're embarrassing me!

Rebecca: Ok fine, you don't want to hear it then?

Diane: I'm sorry, it's just that this whole impromptu situation is rather surreal. To hear that you have even thought of me, in and of itself, is strange. I mean (choked up) I haven't even thought of you since 1993 for...gosh sakes!

Rebecca: Maybe I should go? I'm sor..

Diane: Like hell! I'll be plagued by this until you tell me, so...have a seat.

Rebecca: Wow, you do get excited about stuff don't you?

Diane: What? Why?

Rebecca: Not important...ok so Diane, Sam and I have a past. Looking at the expression on your face tells me, that statement is not a surprise.

Diane shakes her head no, looking puzzled.

Rebecca: Well, If this situation were reversed, I'd want to know so...Diane, Sam has had dreams, very vivid dreams, I should add, for a great deal of time.

Diane: Okay, you've lost me.

Rebecca: He has very fitful dreams. He does not typically awaken, nor does he remember them if and when he does. He sees a sleep therapist pretty regularly, but, when he was with me, and it would happen, he always said your name. Every time. I never told him. Seemed better for him, not to say anything? Are you two..., you know, doin the wild...

Diane: Of course Rebecca. I thought you said you knew Sam...well? (giggles)

Rebecca: Alright, don't be mean. What I'm asking is, is it still happening?

Diane: No, not at all. Hmm...Should I say anything to him? I mean, maybe just see how it goes?

Rebecca: Definitely! Say nothing! Diane, I think, you, were/are the cure!

Rebecca stands, they hug. Rebecca leaves to find Don. Diane remains rooted to her spot on the chair. Staring absentmindedly after Rebecca's retreating form, Diane brings her hand to her throat as if to sooth the burning sensation of swallowing her tears. Eyes stinging from the painful images her overactive mind conjured, she makes an immediate decision to squelch this negative vein and instead focus on the obvious. When one is in love, one sleeps well.

Diane locates the party in the kitchen. The guys are talking plumbing and Sam and Don are discussing the time length of the job when she walks in. Rebecca has gone. Sam looks up at Diane and motions for her to come to him.

Sam: Hey my love, we have good news, and we have good news.

Diane: Yeah? (raises her eye brows) Well lay it on me big guy. What is this glorious news?

Sam: We are going to have to close for about ten to fourteen days, mostly because the new flooring has to set for a good deal of time. So, stay with me here, not only do we get a new floor, but we get help to plan the wedding.

Diane: The wedding? I wasn't aware we had set a date? (smiles, looking down at her ring)

Sam: How about this weekend?

Diane: What? Sam! Do you really think we could pull it off? That's only a week away!

Sam: We can now! We can get married in our house. I know a great guy perfect to perform the ceremony. Betty and Mary will stay on the payroll as wedding planners, boom! Oh! And Auntie! For heaven's sake we can't forget about Auntie!

This time the tears could not be stopped. They poured down her face and into her mouth as she smiled up at Sam. Stepping over that blessed burst pipe, they headed home to plan their nuptials.

Finally! Wedding day! Diane reached her arms up to the ceiling of their bedroom, letting them fall spread out on the bed. Turning her right hand, palm down, she slowly felt Sam's empty spot on the bed. She smiled at the thought of him, spending the night at Norman's house. He probably didn't get any sleep, poor guy. She momentarily wondered if he had had any dreams, but shoved the idea quickly out of her mind. Sam's beautiful face came into her thoughts now. How he had insisted he not see her until she walked down the stairs of their precious home. Everything was ready. Sam was right. Everything just seemed to fall into place, coming together beautifully. The flowers, the food, and the cake are simple, yet elegant. Her gown is vintage lace, soft and subtle, age appropriate without being frumpy. It made her feel beautiful and light as air. She hoped Sam liked it. Seeing him waiting for her with the minister was a vision that kept playing over and over in her mind. Sam said the minister was an old friend of his and she was sure to like him. All of their closest friends and family are going to be there. Just a fun, intimate group gathered to wish them well. Mary and Betty had gone all out planning games and music for the reception. Diane smiled at the thought of Betty's version of charades. It entails a sheet and a lamp for shadow images to be deciphered. The old gang and the new gang...our gang. Oh my! Auntie! That's always a wild card...(knocking on the door)

Shea: Mama bride! You awake?

Diane: Yes, my angel, come in and snuggle me a minute.

Shea: (bursts through the door, jumping on the bed) Can you believe it mother? Today is the day! I think I'm more excited about your wedding than I will be about mine!

Diane: Oh, you peanut! Of course your day will be just as exciting! Speaking of exciting, have you heard from Auntie?

Shea: (smirking) Maybe...

Diane: Oh good. I was hoping she'd be able to come.

Shea: What? No third degree? Wow! I'm impressed, but Auntie will never believe it.

Diane: I know. It's kind of fun reacting opposite of how I usually do, just to keep ya guessing. Now scoot. The old lady bride needs to shower!

Shea: Old lady nothing. I think you and Sam partake in...

Diane: Shea! Out! (Diane playfully pushes her daughter out of the room and closes the door)

Shea: (playfully pushing back) Just sayin...you're not old!

Diane sat staring at her reflection in the mirror of her dressing table. She smiled. In her mind she thought, well mom, it's happening! I can feel you here with me. Diane knew her mother was orchestrating from her place in the great beyond. The bedroom door slowly opened, and Auntie peaked around...

Diane: Hello! Oh you came! (jumping up and smothering Cher with a hug)

Cher: Well of course! I wouldn't miss the wedding of the century! You ready?

Diane: Yep! Very much so!

Cher: Alright, then I'll see you in a few...I'm gonna sing ya down the aisle, lady!

Diane: Oh, I'm so blessed!

Cher: Well, we'll see? I could be croaking like a frog after last night's gig! (Cher laughs, stepping out)

Shea comes into her mother's room.

Shea: It's time mamma!

Diane: Ok, lovie, let's go!

Diane stood at the top of the stairs. Soft music started to play. Auntie singing, ever so beautifully, her precious voice instantly recognizable, instantly comforting. She descended the staircase, following in her daughter's footsteps, slowly, with grace and anticipation. Holding the banister, rounding the corner, she made eye contact with her guy. Tears welled up in his beautiful eyes as she lessened the space between them. The minister entered the space from the kitchen. Frasier! Frasier Crane was the minister! Diane smiled, tears streaming down her face. If this was a dream, she most certainly wasn't ever going to allow herself to awaken from it.

The ceremony was beautiful. Everyone they invited had come. Diane and Sam stepped out on the back porch to grab a little peace and quiet. Sam held his arm around Diane's shoulders.

Sam: Happy, my love?

Diane: Oh, Sam! Ecstatic!

Sam: Don't know that I've ever seen a more beautiful wedding. You are a beautiful bride. Think I'll keep you round for a bit. (chuckles)

Diane: (kissing Sam on the cheek) You know, I like you pretty well too, let's see how it goes, shall we?

Strolling back inside, Diane sees a silhouette of two people behind the sheet. It's Cher and Norm. They are trying to get the audience to guess what they are doing. Voices are yelling out random acts, some close, some not close at all. Shea is busying herself with the camera.

Shea: Ok everyone! We need to take some pictures before you get too crazy now! Mom and Dad, you first. Luke can you get the tripod for the big group pic?

Luke: Sure baby.

Diane: Where shall we stand?

Shea: We'll put you and Dad up there first, and add people as we go until we have everyone. Ready? Luke, Auntie, everyone?

Sam: Ready for what?

Cher: Oh, nothing. Just do as you're told Samuel!

Shea: It's a surprise for you and mom!

Diane: Where?

Shea: You'll see.

Sam and Diane stand for their first picture as husband and wife. Diane doesn't remember when she has ever been this happy. Probably the first time she ever held Shea in her arms would be the closest. They did it. They were married! Life just doesn't get any better than this...

Shea: Ok everyone! Ready...

Everyone speaking together... "SMILE GRANDMA AND GRANDPA!

Diane: I was wrong, it just got better.

The End