Laney sighed as she finished sweeping the café plaza for the third time now. When had her life gotten so routine that she had nothing to do but sweep? Lately she didn't even want to cook anything.
Laney propped herself up with the broom and gazed at the town square, looking at nothing in particular, really. It was strangely warm for a day in late Fall and the trees were brightly colored with hues of red and orange. The slight breeze gently tugging at the hem of her white skirt.
Then she saw Lillian, hopping over Ash's white picket fence and a pregnant sheep to give Ash a cup of steaming Hot Milk. Laney knew that Lillian did this every day, and even though Ash got the same gift every day, he took the cup as graciously as ever. He even gave her a quick peck on the cheek as she left.
Ash didn't see it because her back was turned, but Lillian was blushing fiercely as she went up to the Bluebell request board. Laney took this moment to walk to the flowerbeds near Grady's shop, but she wasn't there for the flowers.
Laney watched Lillian pluck a few notes off the request board and then run up to Mikhail, who had come back to Bluebell when Summer ended and was coming out of town hall. She pulled something that looked like tofu out of her seemingly bottomless rucksack and gave it to Mikhail, whose face lit up considerably when he saw her.
Lillian then ran up the few steps to the plaza, where she promptly gave Cam a mint and bought several packages of what she thought was white roses. Cam, silent as usual, gave her the seed packets with no more conversation than was needed, and maybe even less than that.
Lillian just smiled and went on her merry way. Laney didn't know what caused her to do it, but she called to Lillian from across the plaza. Lillian, who had just noticed Laney now, gave her a big grin and jogged toward her.
"Hey Laney!" Lillian said, cheerfully as ever.
"Hey Lillian…" Laney said, forgetting already why she called Lillian here.
Lillian frowned, making her cute face scrunch up awkwardly. "Laney, is something bothering you? You don't seem very happy as of late…"
Laney knew something was wrong with her; she just couldn't put a feeling to it. Not really sadness, but something deeper than that. It felt like there was a hole in her chest, eating away at her from the inside out every second of the day.
Oh Goddess, when had her thoughts gotten so depressing?
"I-" She started, but her voice cracked, so she started over. "Lillian, who are you ever going to marry?" Laney asked, looking closely for Lillian's reaction.
Lillian's face turned bright red, and her eyes went wide, she had thought about this many times before, but hearing it from someone else made her face become flushed.
"Can you keep this just between us Laney? I was going ask Ash…" Lillian said, whispering and blushing. She held her head down, and Laney saw a flash of blue and gasped. It was a blue feather.
"…But" Lillian began again. "I was hoping he'd ask me first. Oh Laney, I just love him so much. I don't know what I would do if I ever, ever lost him… " She smiled softly then, and Laney could see the affection and love in her eyes for the rival farmer as she fiddled with the azure feather. Laney didn't know what she wouldn't give to feel that way, just for little while.
And then it all came crashing down on her. Laney was jealous of Lillian's life. Lillian had everything and could do anything she wanted and everyone in the two villages would love her no matter what. But the worst part wasn't the jealousy, it was the loneliness. That's what she had been feeling, the loneliness, and envy for her friend
"I wish I had someone Lillian… But good luck with Ash, he's a lucky guy." Laney said, smiling. She had known Ash since before she could walk, and she knew Ash would be happy with Lillian.
Wasn't the heroine suppose to dramatically fall in love in her story and live happily ever after? Laney felt as if she wasn't the heroine of her own story, but maybe miracles could happen, but they sure haven't happened yet. In the two villages, people say, miracles could happen if the luck of the Harvest Goddess was with you. She felt as if… As if she was an expendable, unimportant side character.
"Thank you, you're such a good friend Laney." Lillian said earnestly, and gave her a hug. "And what about Cam? He seems like your type. He's quiet." Lillian said, trying to cheer Laney up.
Laney chuckled half-heartedly, Cam and her? She'd be lying if she said she hadn't thought about it. There were only so many boys her age on this Goddess forsaken mountain, but Laney had known for a long time now that she and Cam were never going to be together.
Laney knew she couldn't complain about her life, she had a good life. She had a loving father and a warm bed to sleep in every night. Plus, Cam wasn't bad company in the cafe. And she was friends with everyone else in the village.
So why couldn't she find someone to love and connect with? Sure the people in Bluebell were nice, but it never felt like…enough. Was there something wrong with her? Was she not good enough for anyone here? Laney had lived in Bluebell village all her life and never had a boyfriend. But Lillian comes, and two years later, she already has the confidence that someone will propose to her.
She really had to stop thinking like this...
But it just wasn't fair. What did they take her for? Just a simple pastry maker? A robot? Probably. She wanted someone to hold her like everyone else did. Someone who needed her just as much as they needed them.
Ugh. Those depressing thoughts again. Silence depressing thoughts!
There… That should keep em' away... She thought crazily.
But it didn't work, her subconscious just whispered back to her: You can't hide from the truth Laney.
"Goddess, I'm going nuts!" Laney whispered to herself.
"Hey Cam!" A voiced called from behind them
It was Ash, coming up from his farm to see his friend Cam on his day off. The two girls where whipped out of their thoughts, and Laney tried to help Lillian stuff the blue feather into her rucksack before Ash noticed them. Where'd she get that blue feather anyway?
The two turned their attention to the boys who were chatting, well, more like Ash was chatting and Cam was listening and nodding while trying to arrange a bouquet of roses. Suddenly, a big grin spread across Lillian's face
"Um, Lillian, I don't like that look on your face…" Laney said, started to become frightened.
Lillian came very close to Laney's face and said with a squeal, "We're going to get you a date!"