DISCLAIMER: All characters of Phineas and Ferb are the property of Dan Povenmire, Jeff "Swampy" Marsh, and Disney Channel. "The Heart of Life" is the property of John Mayer and Columbia Records.


"Where is she?"

"Upstairs."

He said nothing else, nodding his thanks to her mother. He climbed the stairs to his girlfriend's room, knocking softly on the door.

"Candace?"

No answer.

"Candace, I'm coming in. If you don't want me to enter, say something now."

Nothing.

"OK, then."

He slowly opened the door, and in his sights was Candace, face down on her bed, laying in the exact same position that her mother had described. It was apparent that she was in a very miserable mood. It was not, however, a normal one for her. Otherwise Mrs. Flynn would not have called him, the concern easy to hear in her voice.

Jeremy sat himself down on the chair at her mirror, setting his case down next to him. "Is everything OK, Candace? Your mom is really worried about you."

Still nothing.

"And Stacy and Jenny told me you haven't been answering your phone."

"..."

"Is it your brothers? They're not even here, you know. Your mom told me they were at Baljeet's."

This was clearly going nowhere. Whatever was bothering her, it was putting her in a deep depressive mood. Any normal boyfriend would certainly be frustrated at this point.

But Jeremy Johnson wasn't a normal boyfriend. And he didn't need a reason to try to help her. She was his girlfriend. He was going to do anything to make her feel better.

Jeremy silently flipped his case open and pulled out his guitar. He plugged the cord into the nearby speaker, closing the lid in the process. His foot was already tapping on the case the tune that he knew he would need for this occasion. He started strumming on his guitar, the riffs filling the room with a soft melody.

He could see the slightest movement from the bed, but still no significant change. He, at the very least, knew that he had her attention.

I hate to see you cry
Lying there in that position...

Candace's ears perked up at the start of the song.

There's things you need to hear
So turn off your tears and listen...

She turned her head, and Jeremy saw her face for the first time. Her eyes were bloodshot, and her cheeks were red. She had been crying, it seems, for a while.

At least they weren't going now.

Pain throws your heart to the ground...

He peered at her eyes, hoping she would see the concern in his.

Love turns the whole thing around...

She gave a mighty sniff, wiping her cheek dry with a finger.

No, it won't all go the way it should...
But I know the heart of life is good.

As he strummed on his guitar, Candace sat up the side of the bed, her frown never leaving her face. But she was up now. That was a good sign. He continued on:

You know it's nothing new
Bad news never had good timing...

He thought of Stacy and Jenny, of her parents, of all of the people that were attempting to make her feel better.

Then the circle of your friends
Will defend the silver lining...

He thought of what he could give her, and knew that this was the best thing he could do.

Pain throws your heart to the ground...
Love turns the whole thing around.
No, it won't all go the way it should...
But I know the heart of life is good.

Jeremy noticed her silently sit up, her hair still in shambles, her eyes still red. During the soft interlude rifts, she shuffled over to him, and without a word, sat on his lap, setting her head on his shoulder.

He smiled, knowing that she was going to be just fine. It would just take some time.

Pain throws your heart to the ground...
Love turns the whole thing around.
Fear is a friend who's misunderstood...
But I know the heart of life is good.

Jeremy looked into her eyes, and was relieved to see the faintest hint of a smile on her face.

I know it's good...

Nothing but the strums of his instrument were heard. Not that anything needed to be said. He understood. The problem she had wasn't important. What was...was being there for her.

And as his hands graced the strings of his guitar, he knew that no matter what bad things were going to happen...the good would find its way out in the end.


AUTHOR'S NOTE: Most of the time when you're writing a story, you know your inspiration. It festers in your mind, allowing ideas and concepts to formulate in your mind, thus bringing out the story. It is not usually something that is immediately thought of in your brain.

Most of the time. This, fellow readers...is not one of those times.

A dear friend of mine is going through a rather tough patch in her life, and though her name and business will remain anonymous, know that it is far, far more than one person should have to handle on their own. It pains that I cannot do more to help her. But just because I can't do much...doesn't mean that I can't do something.

This is for you, my friend. The bad times may seem insurmountable, but I know that life has a funny way of bringing out the good in due time.

And know I will always be there for you...even if I can't be "there".

Some of the readers may not know what the meaning is when they read this, and I'm sorry, but there are not any easy answers for me to give. Plus, as I once made a young redhead inventor say..."There are some things in life that are just better left to the imagination." I have a friend. A friend whom I care about very much, and one that I would do almost anything to help. That's all you need to know.

Read and review, if you like. Until next time.