21. Better Man - Pearl Jam
When Mary heard Raph's distinctive footsteps coming down the hall, she rolled over and pretended to sleep. I wasn't that she didn't want to see him but, at the same time, she really didn't want him here. The hospital was bad enough without having to argue with her fiancé about what had gotten her here in the first place.
He was a good man but he just didn't understand that the job was important to her. And maybe she didn't need a good man. Maybe she didn't deserve one. Or maybe she just need a good man who was bad enough to keep up with her.
22. Unwritten - Natasha Bedingfield
Mary stared down at the blank piece of paper lying innocently on Marshall's table. She was here, against all sane thought, to get his help in writing her vows. Brandi, Jinx and Raph had all tried to help her but the words that they had suggested were just wrong. They were sappy and sweet and completely abhorrent to Mary's ears. So she was here at Marshall's to find the right words.
"Gah- why is this so hard?" Mary's hands crumpled the paper and only Marshall's hand on her shoulder kept her from throwing the paper across the room again.
Setting down the coffee he had gotten for them, he smoothed out the paper for the third time that day, "Why don't you just start with something simple and revise it as you go."
"Because everything I think that would sound right for a wedding is a bunch of shit that I don't believe and I'm not going to lie while standing in front of the alter." Mary snorted at the thought of talking about love lasting forever and obeying anyone.
"Just say 'I love Raph because he's blah blah whatever' and figure out the blah blah part later," Marshall suggested.
Toying with the edge of the paper, Mary kept her eyes firmly locked on to a spot on the table, "It's the first part of that sentence that I'm having problems with."
23. First Time - Lifehouse
The dance lessons were supposed to be for Mary and Raph but Mary's job had interfered so Brandi had decided to fill in for her sister. The first time she danced with Raph, it felt so right despite everything in her brain that shrieked how wrong it was.
Brandi never was one to go with her brain when her feelings told her something else.
24. Follow Me - Uncle Kracker
Raph remembered the first moment he had seen Mary. She had been throwing back beers in some dive of a bar surrounded by a group of men who were failing at trying to keep up with her. It hadn't been hard to convince her that the rest of those guys weren't anything compared to him. Less than an hour later, she was following him out the door.
When he woke up the next morning, he was surprised to find that he had wished that she hadn't snuck out.
A year later, he woke up in her bed and, upon seeing that she had snuck out again, he realized that the first night he had met her was the only time she had followed him anywhere.
25. Into the Ocean - Blue October
Sometimes Mary wished she had figured out how to be the river. At best, she had figured out the metaphorical way to belly flop into the ocean. It really was too bad she didn't know how to swim through jello because that's what it felt like was inside her head these days.
Scrambling off her bed, Mary ran to her closet and started rummaging though it. Up on the top shelf- way in the back- she found it. Holding the cheap little wrestling trophy up triumphantly, all she could think was, 'I can't wait to show Marshall this.'
26. What's Left of the Flag - Flogging Molly
It was raining the day they buried Marshall Mann. Mary stood quietly throughout the service and only moved to shrug Raph's hand off her shoulder. She hadn't spoken a word since she had gotten the news three days previous and no one had seen a sign of emotion on her face. She didn't even look when they handed her the folded up flag that had been draped over his coffin.
She was as still as a statue when the casket was lowered but when everyone else had walked away, Mary sank to the ground and cried as her world ended.
27. Into the Night - Santana featuring Chad Kruger
The truck had been fine the entire trip but somewhere between point B and point Albuquerque, the engine decided to stall out and die. Figuring Mary would be pissed, Marshall reached for his phone the minute the truck was on the side of the road.
Mary was looking out the window as she reached over to grab the phone from him. Sliding out of the truck, she gestured for him to follow her. They stopped a few yards away and stared at the full moon over the desert landscape.
With a small smirk on her face, Mary looked over at him and asked, "Ever dance with the devil in the pale moonlight?"
28. Someday - Nickelback
Raph hated it that Mary clenched her fists when they fought. She'd never hit him but the sight of her physical reaction to simple words bothered him. They fought. Every couple fought. So what? They'd make up and figure things out if she could just learn to compromise.
Of course, it was usually his job to compromise. And as hard as that was to cope with, Raph was positive that someday they'd get this all worked out. She'd change, right?
29. Desire - Ryan Adams
The guns were holstered, the statements taken and the perps were cuffed in the backseat of a cruiser. But the adrenaline was still pumping and Mary couldn't figure out why. The fight was over and it was time to calm down and give Marshall some crap about that superman stunt he had pulled over.
She couldn't believe that he had been stupid enough to do that- it was something that she would have done. Although- it had been fun to watch. Not really. Not at the time. At the time she was stunned. But now?
Looking over at her partner, Mary felt her heartbeat speed up some more and wondered what the hell was going on with her.
30. Fast Car - Tracy Chapman
Mark's car sped around the curves of the road that weaved through the Appalachian mountains. He had promised her a weekend of roller coasters but this was much better. He was careening around the hilly roads with Mary half out the broken sunroof and grinning like she had been handed the world.
She was addicted to the speed- to the danger- to the uncertainty- and, as she clutched onto the rusted roof, Mary wished her whole life could be like this. No albatross mother dragging her down. No little sister that needed to be taken care of. Just the freedom of freefall.
Preferably without the crash at the end.