This takes place about 4 years in the future (Ash is 20). And the misfile still hasn't been corrected.

Tension

Marie Upton looked over at her daughter in the driver's seat. After spending an hour driving home in silence from the modeling event, Marie couldn't handle the tension, "Ash…" she started. She thought for a moment about the best way to phrase her question, "Honey, is something wrong?"

Ash took a deep breath. She wasn't in any kind of mood to talk, and she just wanted to drive the last few minutes to the house in Cape Cod without her mother asking any embarrassing questions.

Marie, however, wasn't going to take silence for an answer. "Ash," she said in a forceful, but loving manner that only a concerned mother could pull off, "I know something's wrong, please just talk to me."

Ash fought harder to channel all of her thoughts to the road.

"Was it the event? Look, I'm sorry that I made you go through one of those again, but my job was on the line. I really had no other—"

"It wasn't the event," Ash snapped bitterly, "I don't want to talk about it."
"But I do, Ash. You've….changed. You were always a tomboy, but in the past four years I've noticed that you seem hostile toward anything feminine."
"Mom, just drop it, okay," she dropped the bitterness, "I'm fine."

Marie wasn't convinced, she knew her daughter too well to think she was being honest with her. Marie sighed, thinking her attempts were futile when the Ale House came into view. Suddenly she had an idea, "Ash," she said, "why not pull into the Ale House, they're open right?"

"Yeah, for like an hour," she said, recalling the information from her brief employment there a few summers ago, "But why? We had dinner at the event."
"You might have, but remember. I had to coordinate the entire thing. I didn't have time to get anything."

With a sigh Ash pulled into the restaurant's parking lot. The two got out of the car and walked silently into the restaurant.

"Welcome to the Ale House," a new face greeted them, "table for two?"

"Yes please." Marie said.

"Just so you know," the waitress said as she picked up some menus, "we're closing in a few minutes, so you'll have to be quick."

"No problem," Marie said, "just get us some water and some BLTs."

"Sure thing," the waitress put the menus back and led them to an empty table before heading to the kitchen.

The two sat down across from each other and sat awkwardly in silence before Marie spoke up, "Ash, what's wrong?"

Silence.

"Ash, please, don't do this to me. I can't stand to see my baby in pain."

Mom, when you look at me, what do you see?
Marie paused, wondering what her daughter could mean. She smiled, "I see my 20, going on 21 year old daughter who is far more beautiful than I think she gives herself credit for. And, who, contrary to everything she may think, is a gorgeous woman who could make any man happy."

"Mom," she said with a tear-filled chuckle, "I know you're trying to compliment me. But you don't understand how much that hurts."

Marie took that in and started putting the pieces together, "But it's true, Ash. You really are beautiful…" Marie paused, thinking of the best way to say what she had to say, "and if you are a lesbian I will support you one hundred percent of the way." She took her daughter's hand in her own and smiled, thinking she had solved the problem.

"Mom," Ash fought back the tears as hard as she could, "you don't understand."

"Don't understand? Honey, you're my daughter. I don't care who you decide to bring home, my love for you is never going to change."

"Mom, that's not what it is."
"Ash, you don't have to deny it," she stroked a strand of hair from in front of Ash's face, "I know you have feelings for Emily. I've known it for years, ever since you two first came down here together."

"No, mom, you don't get it."

"What, you don't like Emily?" she said playfully in an attempt to lighten the mood.

"No, I do….but I….I like Emily…a lot, but…..I'm not a lesbian."

"Does she know that you feel differently? Is that what has been bothering you?"
"No, I like her like that too….but I'm not a lesbian."
"Ash, you're not making any sense."

"Please, don't make me say it….I just can't."

"Ash, please tell me. I can't stand seeing you suffer like this any longer. What is wrong?" she tightened her grip on Ash's hand.

"Mom," tears ran down Ash's face now, "I….I want to…..I don't…..." Ash just couldn't get it out, but something compelled her to keep trying. She took a deep breath and clenched her eyes shut, "Mom, I don't want to be a girl." She felt her mother's grip get even tighter. "I'm sorry," Ash said as Marie released her hand. "I'm so sorry, Mom. Please, don't be mad. I've lost so many people because of this, I don't think I could live through losing anyone else. I've had to hold this in for so long." Ash started crying harder, thinking that her mother had left her, when all of a sudden she felt someone's warm embrace encompass her.

"Ash, it's okay. Don't be sorry, I'm not angry. I told you before. You are my daught….my child and nothing you do is going to change the love I have for you. I can only imagine how many friends have left you, thinking that you have become someone completely different. But I know you," she wiped the tears from under Ash's eyes, "and I know that you are the child that I have loved and cared for all your life." She stood up and kneeled by Ash. She placed her hand on Ash's thigh, "Through thick and thin, I will stand by you in whatever you wish to do in life."

Ash got to Marie's level and hugged her. Despite her many years of attempting to remain completely masculine, Ash couldn't help but let the tears flow.

My first Misfile Fanfic. I feel like I may have rushed it a little, but I think it came out pretty well. thanks for the read, and please review.