Chapter 1:

The saying is that: 'time heals all wounds' – that's the saying. It's true but not true. Yes, time is an aide for healing of a fresh wound, but a wound will always have the signs of being a wound. That was exactly how Bianca Montgomery felt as she walked around the streets of Pine Valley. She felt as though she was this visible wound who had to walk around as if there was never a wound at all.

Bianca continued walking through the silent fall air with a bouquet of flowers in her arms as the plastic crinkled with each step she took. Once Bianca saw the headstone, she took in a deep breath before crouching down.

"Hi," she placed the arrangement of serene green on the bottom of the tombstone of her deceased girlfriend.

"God, Marissa…I miss you so much," she wiped a stray tear that already dripped from the bottom of her cheek before she realized. "The kids are great. AJ is a wonderful young man – an all star baseball player. You would be so proud. And the girls…" trailed off a little bit before she continued, "Marissa is – well a teenager. Which of course means that I am her enemy. Having a mom who is a known lesbian only adds fuel to the fire. Gabrielle luckily isn't in that same place though. Give her a few years, I'm sure that Gabi may be in the same boat."

Bianca brushed away at some on the loose dirt on Marissa's headstone. "JR is still in his coma. I'm trying to be less angry, Marissa, but I just can't bring myself to do it. If not for him then you would still be here."

Bianca shook her head in disbelief, "I've gotten better about accepting that you're gone. It's impossible some days, but its…" again she trailed off, "I'm getting there." Bianca felt the chill of the air brushed against her and she gently shivered, "I should go. I love you," she kissed her fingers then pressed them against Marissa's name.

Brushing herself off, Bianca got up and walked to her car hugging her arms to try to fight off the cold.

Miranda lay on her bed looking up at the ceiling feeling bored, annoyed, and a huge laundry list of emotions. A.J. was busy with baseball practice and hanging out with the guys, so away went the one person that she could talk to.

Just as she let out a huge sigh, feeling overly lonely she heard a soft ding notifying her that someone was trying to chat with her on Facebook. Miranda sat up facing her laptop that was sitting open on the bed. Miranda squinted her eyes with intrigue upon see the message sent to her.

'Please tell me that you are doing something other than looking up at the ceiling, feeling as though the world is against you.'

Miranda saw that the message came from Reese Williams, her former step-mother/second mother. Reese was in Miranda's life from the age of 4-8 before Bianca and Reese divorced. As much as Miranda loved and adored Marissa who was in her life as her mother's partner for two years before she died, Reese always had a connection with her.

After Reese and Bianca divorced, the two women agreed that due to Miranda's closeness to Reese, they would have a custody arrangement so that Miranda would still know Reese as her second parent. Miranda always spent every other summer in Paris with Reese as well as every other holiday as per Bianca and Reese's custody agreement with the girls. If Miranda wasn't in Paris they kept contact through video chats and messages.

Miranda typed back:

'What are you? A fly on my wall!?'

'I don't have to be. I know my daughter well, little girl J' Reese typed back.

Miranda chuckled then typed back:

'I'm not sitting in my room as if the world is against me, by the way. I'm just…emotionally thinking.'

Reese typed back:

LOL emotionally thinking? That's a new one.

Miranda typed back

Are you too busy to video chat?

Reese simply typed in a heart symbol then before Miranda knew it, Reese was ringing her for a video chat. Miranda hastily answered the video chat and Reese popped up on her screen smiling at her.

"Hey sweetie!" Reese waved.

"Hi! You look beautiful."

"Thank you. So do you. Are you okay?"

Miranda shrugged, "I got into a fight with mom."

"Ooh…not good. What was it about?"

"Kids in the school making fun of me because my mom is gay. I took it out on her and told her that if she weren't…parading the fact that she was gay maybe people would leave me alone," Miranda looked away from Reese stare suddenly feeling ashamed hearing herself admit it aloud.

"Miranda," Reese called. Miranda still wouldn't look at her second mother, "Miranda!" Reese called more sternly, "Look at me!"

"You're disappointed in me."

"No," Reese frowned, "I'm not disappointed. I get it. Parents are embarrassing enough. There isn't a how to book for us gays on how to raise our kids to avoid what you're going through other than to teach you not to feel ashamed of yourself or us. BUT, instead of taking things out on your mom. Get her point of view."

Miranda reluctantly nodded, "I know. How's Gabi?" Miranda changed the subject.

Bianca and Reese shared custody of Gabi. Bianca had sole custody of Gabi but during summer, and every other holiday Reese had her in Paris. Summer was just about up in a few weeks, so Gabi was going to be heading straight back to Pine Valley.

Reese looked over her shoulder as if Gabi was going to pop up behind her, "She's good. The girl is speaking French even more fluent than me," she chuckled. Suddenly she looked serious, "I'm sending her back to Pine Valley in a few hours."

"A few hours? Isn't she coming back a week? "

"Well, she'll be coming a week early."

"In a few hours…isn't it like 8pm there or something?"

"Not quite. We're chatting at around 7ish pm your time. It's 1 am here."

"It is?" Miranda asked with amazement?"

Reese arched a brow as she slowly nodded.

"My god! Here I am asking you to chat with me and I'm taking you away from sleep. I'm so sorry – I'm an idiot!"

"Miranda, slow down. You're no idiot. I'm a night owl anyway. I do my best work when I'm up late." Speaking of which, I have to get on it. So I will talk to you soon. Love baby girl."

"Love you too. So why is Gabi's coming tomorrow… so early?"

Reese visibly squirmed, "Because…This time instead of a chaperone. I am coming with her to Pine Valley."

Miranda raised a brow in interest, "Really? Why?"

Reese uncomfortably cleared her throat, "I was hired to be lead architect for a new building that a company named…Centric is working on."

Miranda's mouth formed into a perfect 'o'. "Centric. I think I heard Aunt Kendall talk about a partnership with that company a month or two ago. Mom is temporarily in charge of Fusion while Aunt Kendall and Greenlee are on vacation, so you're more than likely to bump into her.

"So I won't be dealing with Kendall, I'll be dealing with Bianca," Reese thought aloud. As if able to somewhat read Miranda's mind Reese said, "Not a word to your mother."

Miranda began to protest, "But Reese –"

"Miranda, I mean it."

"Fine," she shook her head, "are you at least going to call her?"

Reese bowed her head down, "I tried…I still don't know how to talk to her like we used to. It will probably seem harsh, but I think seeing her face to face would be best. Then I can't avoid not dialing the number. I have to drop Gabi off. I have to knock on the door. I have to do this."

Miranda supportively smiled at Reese, "I'll make sure to keep mom home tomorrow."

"Thanks sweetie. Goodnight."

"Good morning," Miranda quipped back before ending their video chat.

With a smile Miranda closed her laptop. Part of the four year old within her who was so happy during the time that her mother and Reese were together was giddy from within. Her mother Bianca had a few secondary mother figures in her life with people who she could tell that though she liked them, that they wouldn't last. Reese was different. No, Reese and her mother didn't last, however even when they were apart a small part of Miranda rooted for the two. She would NEVER admit this to her mother, but as much as she loved Marissa it was Reese who she considered her first real second mother.

With it being five years since Marissa's passing perhaps her mother would finally be open to heal and maybe even work things out with Reese?

Miranda snorted with a shake of her head adding under her breath, "And maybe she'll begin liking men," Miranda grabbed her bathrobe and headed for the bathroom.