Disclaimer: This was written for FanArtPolooza '09, it involves the story Alan mentions on page 20 of issue Two. All characters belong to Lora Innes. Everyone enjoy!
A Memory Best Forgotten
A The Dreamer Fanfiction
Alan Warren had always known that being an apple farmer was not the most lucrative of career choices. And that's exactly what it had been, a choice, he'd been given every opportunity to go to Harvard and become a doctor like his cousins, or a lawyer, or a clergyman, or a teacher, or whatever else he could have wanted. But all Alan wanted was his simple farm, and never, until now, had he questioned his decision.
Because now there was, of all the cliché things, a girl. A girl to whom he said a simple hello one afternoon, causing what he could already tell would be years of trouble. Not that he necessarily was complaining.
She, in a roundabout way, was the reason he had been waiting on this wharf for the last half hour, because if not for her he wouldn't have cared about how much money he was making, wouldn't have any parents to try and impress, and no Tory suitors to compete with. He would have no reason to search for obscure methods to sell his unripe apples. He'd never thought about it before, but sailors like fresh fruit just as much as anyone, and after a few months in a barrel the apples would be ripped, and they were willing to trade Alan for quite a profit.
In six short months she had already managed to make a mess of all sorts of things. Really, he couldn't have found a more inconvenient girl to fall in love with. She was completely stubborn, too young, prone to tantrums, and the complete opposite of him in politics and society. The second time they met she'd interrupted his family's thanksgiving dinner, an event that he was sure he would never stop hearing about from his aunt and cousins. Since then, she'd coordinated their "secret" meetings at the market each week where he was supposed to be selling his apples. Even now, just as Mr. Watson, his new business partner, was approaching she was sneaking up behind him and covering his eyes with her hand.
"Guess who." She whispered in his ear.
"Beatrice! What are you doing her?" He demanded, completely stunned.
"I came to see you." She said with a grin.
"How? You shouldn't be here! Miss Whaley, you need to go home!"
"I told my mother I was shopping with Eve today, she is covering for me. We can spend the entire afternoon together." She said with a gleam in her eye.
"Beatrice, this is most improper. You have to go back and find her right now! I don't have time this afternoon."
He didn't mean to get annoyed with her, but what was she thinking? Plotting and sneaking out. It wasn't that he didn't want to spend time with her, but what if they were caught, or even seen, what would people think. Alan would rather only see her for a few precious moments once a week than have anyone thinking anything about her.
Of course there was no way she would understand that. Her mood changed instantly. "I have an entire afternoon to do whatever I want, if you don't want to spend time with me, then I will find someone who will." She declared, stomping back down the dock.
"Good Morning, Mr. Watson." Alan greeted, ignoring Beatrice's antics, for the moment.
Mr. Watson had brought his sons with him. Alan knew that Mr. Watson hoped the teenaged boys would learn the trade from him and continue the business, but it seemed they cared little for their father's affairs while they stayed several feet away, talking loudly to each other.
"I have a deal I would like to make with you, if you would hear me out." Mr. Watson told Alan in a deep voice. Alan found that he couldn't hear Mr. Watson out, because amongst his son's bantering there was suddenly an all too familiar giggle.
Mr. Watson droned on as Alan looked over and found his Beatrice talking to the boys. Talking being the polite way to put it, she was leaning quiet closely to one of them with her hand resting above the elbow of the other.
"Oh yes, I am terribly lost, I don't know what I'm going to do!" Alan heard her say to one of them.
"So if we can continue these shipments until the harvest begins I can offer you…"
Alan hated lying more than anything, it upset him to no end how seamlessly she could be dishonest. 'Maybe if she is going to be throwing her self at worthless men more often' he thought 'she should make use of that unseemly talent and also pursue a career on the stage.'
"I'm actually in quite a hurry, Mr. Warren, so if you could just sign right here the entire transaction will be complete."
"Oh, yes of course." Alan said signing the paper he had barely even glanced at.
"Wonderful! Good day!" Mr. Watson said as he walked swiftly back toward land, calling for his sons to follow. They left Beatrice with a kiss on the hand each, but, as Alan was quick to notice, no help with her "troubles."
"So," she said in a light voice, walking along side him as he passed her, "Now that that's finished, what shall we do?"
The gravity of what had just happened came over him all at once. She had done it all on purpose, knowing it would make him jealous, and he had let it affect not only his emotions, but who knows what he had agreed to in that contract. Alan had never been known for controlling his temper, so he acted on the first thought that popped into his head. With one swift shove she slipped off the wharf and into the harbor.
Alan had walked five steps, giving him three seconds of feeling complete satisfaction and triumph before he realized what he had done.
Maybe some day there will be stories told about how he dove into the harbor to so save her, carrying her and her a hundred pounds of her wet dress back to the safety of shallow waters. Maybe someday the girls of posterity will swoon over his legacy, but Beatrice was having quite a different reaction.
"Get off of me!" She demanded as soon as her feet could touch the sand. She pushed him backwards into the water and began trudging onto shore.
"No! I am going to go find Eve and go home, just as you wanted me to, and don't you dare follow me, I never want to see you again." She screamed back at him.
He let her go, trying no to laugh loudly enough for her to hear. He knew she would be safe, he could see Eve watching the entire scene from a block away. He knew he'd made a mistake, but he was nearly positive that if he didn't come after her right now, she would be waiting for him at the market on Wednesday, just like she had every other week.