A/N - This is my first venture into Reba fanfiction and it was written as a gift for Allie (dance without sleeping), perhaps a Christmas gift, if you will. It's unbeta-ed so all mistakes are mine. Enjoy!
She Makes A Wish For Snow
It is slightly cold outside, but thoroughly warm inside. Reba smiles wistfully and takes a sip of her hot chocolate. The weather outside isn't considered cold to some parts of the country but Reba isn't used to cold. She likes the sun and she likes the warmth. It so very rarely snows in Houston but when it does, Reba thinks that it is a lovely sight. She hopes that it will snow this year. Curled up on the couch with a soft blue blanket over her legs, Reba thinks of the last time she has had total peace. She loves it when she is alone at home. As much as she loves her family, she loves the company of sweet silence as well.
There is an open family album on her lap and she has been going through old family photographs for a few days now. Reba does not know the reason behind her nostalgia but she welcomes it. Cheyenne and Van are busy preparing for the arrival of their new baby and they come by the house less these days. Jake is growing up and spends more time in his room. Reba can't help but to feel a pang - of what she didn't know - in her chest to think of her baby boy growing up. Nevertheless, she is glad that they are becoming independent.
Warming her hands on the hot mug she is holding, Reba allows herself to think of Brock and Barbara Jean. They are a happy couple, she muses, unconsciously gripping her mug harder. Barbara Jean looks very beautiful now and Reba feels a slight twinge in her chest when she sees Brock laughing together with Barbara Jean as though they have not a care or worry in the world. They are living the life of a happy family no doubt, Reba thinks, and they are very likely to remain that way thanks to her stopping Barbara Jean from leaving only just a few months ago. She didn't want him to lose his happiness just as she had lost hers. The happy and wonderful life she and Brock should have had together, her mind adds bitterly. If only there was someone who had stopped Brock from leaving like she had stopped his current wife.
She wastes no time in squashing that line of thought. It is all in the past now. There is nothing to be gained by thinking of regrets and what could have been. Barbara Jean is a good friend, and although the younger, blonde woman isn't a very bright woman, Reba finds herself liking her. She can admit it now, that she thinks of Barbara Jean as a best friend despite all that has happened.
It is barely evening but the sun is setting earlier than usual. The Christmas decorations are up and the presents are already wrapped, sitting in her closet. With nothing particular important to do, her mind wanders again. She thinks of Jack and what he would be doing now. Reba hopes that he is happy, wherever he is. Their romance, she thinks, was based purely on attraction and lust. It might have turned into something more if they had more time. Reba thinks of the various men she has dated. Again, she hopes that all of them are happy. Everyone should be happy during this time of joy and celebration.
The voice startles her out of her reverie and she looks up, already knowing who it is. Reba can recognize his voice anywhere, even over a static laden telephone call.
"Hey," she says, smiling at him. She has started to mind less and less when Brock comes over. She likes his company even - when he isn't busy annoying her of course. "What do you need?" she asks as he closes the door behind him.
Brock's smile is pleasant and warm, something that Reba notices. "Nothing actually. Barbara Jean went last minute Christmas shopping and she forbade me to go along. She's been gone all day. She doesn't want me to know what she buys because it's a surprise and she thinks that I'll tell you what she got for you." He goes straight to the refrigerator in the kitchen and grabs a bottle of mineral water.
Reba tilts her head slightly, amused. "Really?"
"Yeah, that's what she said. That woman loves you more than me," he tells her with a lopsided grin.
She chuckles. "I think I can see that." Reba can see that he has come over for someone to talk to although he doesn't mention it at all. She is secretly glad that he enjoys her company. "And would you have told me what she got if you knew?" Her voice turns predatory and she pretends to look annoyed.
Brock sits on the couch opposite her and leans back, a smile curving his face. "I just might," he tells her and Reba breaks into a grin.
"That's very wise," she nods, a sparkle in her eyes.
"It's colder this year. Might snow," he says, giving her a pointed grin. He knows that Reba likes snow.
"Yeah, I hope so too." There is a silence but it is not an awkward one. They have grown comfortable with each other's presence and enjoy it as well. "Isn't it a little cold to be drinking cold water?"
He shrugs. "Nah, it's fine."
"Look at these," she says, holding out the photo album she has been going through to him.
Brock takes it and puts down the bottled water he has been drinking from. He flips through the pages, gazing at each photograph with adoration. "The kids were so tiny," Reba muses and sips her drink. "They look like they were born yesterday."
"Yeah." He is engrossed in walking down memory lane, when everything had been so simple. When they were still a family and - he pauses at a page - completely happy. Brock glances up to see Reba watching him. She is smiling and he realizes that he is wearing a goofy smile on his face. She shakes her head and goes back to her drink as he puts down the photo album.
"Thank you for being my best friend." Brock says it sincerely and gives her a warm smile.
Reba feels a surge of warmth embrace her heart. She knows that there is no doubt he is thanking her for convincing Barbara Jean to stay. She smiles back and is struck by the affection she sees in his clear blue eyes. The wind is almost knocked out of her lungs as she realizes how much he cares for her. Perhaps even as much as she cares for him. "Well, when I married you, I told you that I'll always love you and stand by your side no matter what," she says, suppressing the tinge of irony in her voice. No matter what, she thinks. Even if he leaves you, her mind supplies, as though it has a life of its own. Suddenly, she realizes that she has mentioned the word love. Reba is unprepared for the ache to form in her chest and anger starts to form. It is directed at herself and she looks down, not wanting Brock to see and misunderstand that she was angry at him.
"Yeah, you did. Thank you for that."
She looks at him and finds relief. He does not notice what she has unwittingly revealed to him. Or if he does, he is keeping it to himself to save her the embarrassment. Reba hopes that it is not the latter which is the case. She schools her features to a warm look instead of an embarrassed one. "You're welcome." It takes all her strength to keep her voice steady.
Before Reba knows it, Brock is looming above her and she stands up abruptly. "What are -" she starts to demand but breaks away when she feels his breath on her cheek. Her fingers curls around the mug she still holds in her both her hands. Reba clutches at it, feeling the need to hold onto something tightly before her soul flies into a tiny million pieces.
"And in my own way, I'll always love you too," he says and he reaches out to touch her cheek with the back of his hand. An illicit thrill rushes through her body and her cheeks flush. Reba wants to step back but she finds herself frozen to the spot, as though she is nailed onto the floor. His gaze pierces into her eyes and she feels unbearably naked before him. It is as though he can see her entire soul and deepest, darkest desires. The revelation frightens Reba and she longs to run as far as she can from him but like a unwitting fly, she is drawn to the light. Reba thinks she needs more than a mug to clutch onto because she feels herself slipping. For a moment, she thinks he might kiss her and her pulse quickens. She prays that he wouldn't because if he does, she knows that she is gone.
He doesn't kiss her and her heart sinks to the deepest pool of despair. And when he drops his hand, the spot on her cheek where his hand was feels bare and foreign.
"I have to go," he says, gazing at her. "Barbara Jean would be back by now."
Reba doesn't answer. She doesn't trust her voice and she doesn't trust that her mind would overrule her heart this time. So she nods mutely and tries to keep the disappointment she should not be feeling at bay.
He turns to walk to the door but then, to her surprise, he stops midway. Brock looks up and Reba can feel him contemplating his actions. She wonders if she should escape to the kitchen before he decides to go to her but her knees are weak feels as though they wouldn't support her if she walks.
A slight brush of the lips is all there is to it. He is halfway across the room by the time Reba starts to breathe. Her mind feels numb at the same time her body lights up with awoken fire. The kiss holds no lust and no torrents of passion. It is a simple affectionate kiss, friendly to whomever that might have had the change to witness it. Like a kiss exchanged between close friends who have finally return to one another; to their not lost but buried friendship.
Hand on the doorknob, Brock affords a look back at the woman standing before his eyes. His one time lover, his one time wife. His best friend. Reba returns his look with one of her own which conveys everything her heart says. The incident will never happen again, she knows, as Brock is a good father to Henry and a good husband to Barbara Jean. But she feels neither pain in her soul nor saddened by this fact. She feels joy instead because she knows he reciprocates. They will not ever act on their feelings but there is mutual understanding between the both of them now. By the time she has completed her thoughts, Brock has left the house.
With a sigh, she returns to her previous position on the couch. His presence remains in the room, his warmth in her body, his face in her thoughts and his love in her soul.
It is slightly cold outside, but thoroughly warm inside. Reba smiles wistfully and takes a sip of chocolate from the mug she is still holding.
She looks outside the window and makes a wish for snow.
A/N - Thanks for taking the time to read. Reviews would be a marvellous gift!