The Dream

Disclaimer: I do not own the rights or the characters associated with Strong Medicine.

Peter Riggs was sitting at Mike's Diner eating lunch. He has been wracking his brain for the last hour trying to think up a way to propose to Kayla with absolutely no luck. He looked at the little paper balls around him. 'Poor tree,' he thought.

He already had the ring. He's had it for months…three to be exact. Three months ago, he bought the ring and for three months he's been trying to think of the perfect proposal and he hasn't had any luck. Everything that he's come up with has either been too long or too short or too personal or not personal enough.

He knew that getting proposed too was an important thing for a woman. He wanted this to be something that Kayla remembered for the rest of her life. He was a sensitive guy who was in touch with his feelings. He has no trouble expressing them, writing a marriage proposal shouldn't be this difficult. He took out some more paper and wrote, "Kayla, you know all the songs that play in my heart…"

'Way too cheesy,' Peter thought. He crumpled the paper up into a ball and threw it on the table with all of his other drafts. Why is this so hard? It's not like he was confused of his feelings for Kayla. He was madly in love with her and wants to spend the rest of his life with her. He just hoped that she felt the same way. Peter laughed to himself. The possibility of her saying no never occurred to him. Now the pressure was really on. He opened his pad of paper to jot down some more ideas, but the pad was out of paper. He looked around to all of the paper balls that were on the table. "Crap," he said. Things just weren't going his way. He needed a distraction.

He looked out the window and saw a little girl walking between her mom and dad holding their hands. They lift her up and she swings between them. He looked around the diner and saw parents with their children feeding them French fries that they had cooled off by blowing on them.

Watching all these parents with their children gave him a warm and fuzzy feeling in the pit of his stomach. For the first time in his life, he realized that that is what he wanted. He imagined he and Kayla and their little girl sitting at the diner sharing a meal. His daughter was stuffing French fries in her mouth. He and Kayla were sitting there watching their little girl eat.

"Lily, don't eat that hamburger," Peter said. "That hamburger is made of cows which were slaughtered in mass, kept in isolation from his rooster and hen friends, and bread solely for the purpose of dying to make that hamburger so you can eat it."
Kayla smacked him in the arm, "Peter don't tell her that. You're gonna scare her."
Lily looked at her father and giggled.
"For your information beef is full of protein, which little girls need to grow big and strong. Isn't that right Lily?" Kayla said.
"Right mommy," the four year old said.
"Also full of mad cow disease too," Peter whispered to his wife.
Kayla smacks him again. "Ow," he said. "That hurt." He looked over at his daughter who was giggling. "Are you sure that you want to eat that hamburger?"
Lily looks up at him with her big brown eyes, obviously inherited from her mother and says, "You do want me to grow up big and strong, don't you daddy?"
"Well, that's what protein supplements are for," Peter said.
Lily gave him her best puppy dog look, another thing that was obviously inherited from her mother. "Daddy."
"Finish your burger."
"Mmm, thank you daddy," Lily says. She sits on Peter's lap and puts the burger to his mouth. "Have some, daddy."
"Thanks, but I think that I'll stick to the protein supplements."
Lily giggles and takes another bite of her burger. "I'm gonna grow big and strong, just like Mommy."
"Well, Mommy is gonna grow a lot bigger soon," Kayla said.
Peter looked over at Kayla and laughed. "How much bigger are you planning on growing?"
"About the size of a basketball," Kayla replied taking a sip of her water. "I mean it will take me a few months to reach full basketball status, but eventually….."
"You mean you're….?"
"That's right., I'm pregnant."
"You're? We're? Baby?" Peter was having trouble getting the words out.
"That's right," Kayla said. She look absolutely radiant.
Peter kissed his wife. "I love you," he said. They were going to have a baby. Another baby. He couldn't believe how happy he was. He looked down at his daughter who was sitting in his lap playing with her French fries. "Hey Lily, guess what?"
Lily looked up at Peter with eager eyes, "What?"
"In a few months, you're going to get a little brother or sister. How does that sound?"
"Yay," she said as she clapped her hands. "Does that mean I have to share my toys?"

Both Peter and Kayla laughed.

Before either one of them could respond, Peter was shook out of his thoughts by a loud, gum-chewing waitress. "Anything else?" she asked.

"Nope, I'm good," Peter said.

"Okay, then. Here's your check. Pay at the register."

"Will do," Peter said.

Once she was gone, Peter's thought back to his daydream and smiled. That's what he wanted…a wife and a family and he wanted to have all of that with Kayla. Then it hit him….the perfect proposal. He searched his pockets for a piece of paper. When he couldn't find one, he took out a dollar bill and began writing on it. He felt just like a Beatle, writing a hit song on some napkins that was going to make them millions. The only difference is that what he was writing was going to win him the woman of his dreams, which to Peter was so much more important than the millions.

He wrote and wrote and wrote and when he was finished he let out of sigh of relief. He had actually written something completely amazing. Something that he was sure that Kayla would love. He read it over once…twice…three times marveling at how easy it had come to him. He had been trying to write something for three months and nothing. Then, in a moment of blind inspiration, he had written the most amazingly beautiful proposal ever created. He just hoped that Kayla felt the same way about it. He put the bill back in his pocket for safe-keeping and took a sip of his water. He glanced at the clock and realized that he was late for his shift. He took one last gulp of his water and ran to the register and paid the bill. Unfortunatly he had forgotten to leave a tip. He ran back to the table and took a few dollars out of his pocket to leave for the waitress.

As he turned to leave, the baby at the next table dropped his binky. Peter bent down to pick it up and handed it back to the baby. "There you go," Peter said. They baby gurgled. 'Soon enough, Peter. Soon enough,' he thought and ran out of the diner towards Rittenhouse hoping he wasn't too late.

Meanwhile, the gum-chewing waitress went to the table to collect her tip. She saw that one of the bills had scribbling on it. She walked over to the register and handed it to the cashier. "Joe, some guy gave me a bill with writing all over it," she whined. "Can you exchange it for me?"

"Sure thing, Tina," Joe said.

"Thanks." Tina handed him the dollar bill that had been left on the table and took a nice clean bill.

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