A/N: While updating my website (lauradugan(dot)com), I realized that I had a few old stories that I never uploaded to FanFiction. I was shocked that I never posted this one! The other two were short one-shots. This is a very involved, multi-chapter story of which I am very proud! I guess I published it on my site and forgot to put it out here. Well, I'm remedying that now. I hope you enjoy!
Each chapter is prefaced by a song lyric (several from the story's title song, Hour Follows Hour) and includes a date and time. Each time has a specific origin which I'll explain in each chapter's preface.
Disclaimer: Not mine. STFBE is property of Pebblehut. It's not even on the air any more – oh, though I wish it was!
Date: 6/16 is my sister-in-law's birthday. Also the birthday of my friend Jenn.
Hour follows hour
Like water follows water
Everything is governed by the rule
Of one thing leads to another
~ Ani DiFranco :: Hour Follows Hour ~
Hour Follows Hour
12/21 6:16 pm
"Sue?" Lucy stood in the doorway of her bedroom and waved her arms trying to get her friend's attention. "Sue?" she said again, practically jumping up and down. Still, Sue did not look up. She remained staring at the telephone in front of her. Lucy sighed and walked over to where Sue sat, touching her shoulder and making her jump in surprise. "I think I've managed to land a few aircraft with my hand signals, but you didn't seem to notice at all."
"I'm sorry, Luce. I guess I'm just distracted," Sue smiled weakly and then stood, walking to the couch where she plopped down, clutching a pillow.
"Okay, what is going on here?" Lucy asked as she moved Sue's legs aside so she could squeeze onto one end of the couch. "I don't think I've ever seen you like this, moping around, not saying anything, developing an unhealthy attachment to the telephone..."
"I talked to David," Sue signed, feeling more comfortable at the moment in her native language.
"David? I haven't heard him mentioned in a while."
"We broke up." Sue closed her eyes, trying to find some inner calm, a way to detangle her thoughts. But all she saw was the look in Jack's eyes, that fleeting moment where he sought her approval before his lips touched hers and all rational thought ceased to exist. She opened her eyes and sat up, wrapping her arms around her legs and propping her chin on her knees.
"Ah. So that explains the depression. I take it, it wasn't mutual? I thought that you and..." Lucy stopped signing at Sue's signal.
"I broke up with him." Sue spoke, tucking her head behind her knees.
Lucy looked at her, puzzled, then reached out and drew up her chin. "Well, that certainly makes things more interesting."
"What?" Lucy couldn't help but grin. "I had a feeling there was more to this story than there seemed. So spill, I want all the details."
"Well, you said I hadn't talked about David in a while... And I hadn't because we really had not been seeing much of each other. It's Christmas, so he's been busy with orders and I've been busy with work and spending more time with..." Sue stopped speaking and made a sort of waving twisting hand gesture.
"I'm not familiar with that sign."
"That's because it's not one. I was assuming that you'd fill in the blank."
Lucy laughed. "Right. You mean Jack. I had noticed the two of you catching dinner at least one night a week, but I didn't want to ask. There's already a bit of gossip floating around work and I didn't want to make things worse."
Sue groaned. "Gossip?"
"Well, what did you expect after the two of you were caught making out?"
"We weren't making out!"
"Uh huh, yeah. You're talking to me, here, Sue. Not Bobby and the rest of the gang. And if it wasn't making out, then what exactly was it?"
Sue felt herself blushing and covered her face again. Lucy laughed and let Sue regain her composure before she touched her arm.
"You've got it bad, girl. But I promise, no more." Sue smiled gratefully. "But you guys do make the cutest couple." Sue scoffed and tossed a pillow at Lucy. A full out pillow fight erupted and continued until they were breathless with giggles.
"Thanks, I needed that."
"You know what you really need?"
"I'm afraid to ask."
"A party. We need to throw another Christmas party. We can invite the whole gang. It'll be fun! Let's see... Christmas is Friday, so let's have it on Wednesday."
"That's two days away. Do you think we can get it arranged by then?"
"Sure! We're women and we're resourceful. There's nothing we can't do."
A smile crept across Sue's face. "Okay. Two days. We can do this. I'll call Jack and invite them."
"Don't you realize what you just said? You said you'd call Jack and invite them." Lucy finger spelled the word for emphasis.
"No, I said I'd call the gang."
"You're hopeless. Go call."
Sue grabbed her Blackberry and punched in Jack's number. Suddenly her day was looking a lot brighter.