The beginning of September was as beautiful as ever, a small dip in temperature but it was still hot and gorgeous outside. School had started and the house was quiet.
Sarah wasn't working today and hoped Richie wouldn't either, but she knew better than that. He was very busy arranging everything. Immensely proud as she was, she was as also sad she couldn't see him perform. By the time Richie was leaving for Europe, she would be in her last month of pregnancy. The thought of him missing the baby's birth had crossed her mind a few times but Richie would be back two weeks before Sammy was due. If Sammy stuck to the due date.
She spent most of her day strolling around the house, whenever she sat down Sammy protested until they walked again.
As long as Sammy would behave tonight, she thought she'd be alright.
Tonight, they would celebrate their anniversary. It was hard to believe a year had gone by so fast but she was also incredibly happy with everything that had happened in that year. Her life had changed so much and for the better.
The feeling of having a husband that truly loved her was amazing, surrounded by a happy family was all that she could wish for. She had always dreamed of this. Only, she had imagined it when she was 25, not at the end of her forties.
But that was how it was and she wouldn't change anything anymore, her past had made her stronger, she knew that, she had just proved it in court.
In the bedroom, Sarah noticed something unusual. She had kept the rose Richie had given her a year ago when he proposed, it was still safe in its tie box but the box wasn't on her night stand anymore. Checking behind it and not finding it made her panic a little bit. Sure the flower was wilted and mostly falling apart but it had special meaning, she wanted to keep it as a reminder of that wonderful night.
She checked the rest of the room but couldn't find it anymore. Why would anyone take it or put it somewhere else? Everyone knew the meaning of it.
She shouldn't get upset over it, it was only a flower, a dead one even but she couldn't help herself as the tears slid down her cheeks.
Richie arrived home an hour later, he had been gone almost all day but he knew Sarah understood he had imported things to arrange and it had been the perfect time to get her anniversary present. They were having a date tonight, a special restaurant he had picked out and he planned to give Sarah her present during dinner. He was sure she would love it.
He had put a lot of thought into his gift and finally decided this would be a very good anniversary gift. He almost couldn't wait to give it but took it upstairs to the bedroom to put it away for later.
There he found Sarah lying on the bed, he put his gift on top of the dresser and walked over to her. She seemed asleep but when he got on the bed next to her he saw she wasn't. He could see the tear stains on her face. It always made him feel bad when Sarah was upset. He hoped it was because of hormones rather than something to really upset her.
"What's the matter?" He asked gently as he wiped his thumb over her cheek.
Sarah sighed. "I don't know, a mixture of everything I guess."
"What do you mean?" Richie asked confused, still keeping his gentle touch over her cheek.
"I'm pregnant. Sammy wants to do stuff and I just want to lay down, my back hurts, my feet hurt, everything hurts." She sighed again. "It's probably hormones."
Richie moved over to her other side, his hands going straight to her back to massage the pain away.
"What else?" He asked gently. "Does this help?"
"I does, thanks." She could feel the tears burn behind her eyes again. "I lost something."
Confused, Richie looked up but from his position he couldn't see his wife's face. "What?" He asked even though he already had a pretty good idea about what she had lost.
"My rose. The one you gave me when you proposed, remember? By the large rose bushes. It was so wonderful and now I lost the rose."
"Oh." Richie tried to sound worried.
"I just can't find it. I can't believe it's gone." She couldn't hold back the tears anymore and started crying all over again.
"Sarah." He said. "It's alright. You'll find it again." He tried to sooth and hug her but it didn't help.
"It's gone. I've looked everywhere for it."
He hugged her tighter, he couldn't believe she would get this upset over losing a dead flower.
Gently he let go of Sarah and got up.
"Where are you going?" She asked confused.
"Getting something that'll cheer you up."
"But I want you here."
"Just a second." Richie said as he walked back to the dresser and picked up the small wrapped box.
Sarah sat up and watched him in wonder.
Richie picked up his wrapped gift and went to sit next to Sarah again.
"I wanted to give you this tonight but I'll let you open it now." He handed it over even though he wanted to wait til later, he also wanted to see his wife happy.
Sarah took it and looked it over. "Are you sure?"
"Yeah, just open it."
She did as he asked and gently unwrapped the gift, careful not to tear the paper. Inside, she found the all too familiar tie box.
"Richie?" She asked confused, he had taken it?
"Open it." He insisted.
Sarah opened the tie box and noticed the box was entirely full, she turned it upside down and an acrylic cube fell out, the rose preserved in the middle of it. She held the cube and ran her thumbs over the smooth edges.
"I thought you'd like it, that way the flower wouldn't be damaged any more. Now you'd know it'd be safe." He explained.
"Richie, that's so thoughtful and perfect. I love it. Thank you so much." She threw her arms around him and hugged him tight. "I love you."
"I love you too honey, happy anniversary."