Ariel was all alone now. So she decided this would be a new start. That meant redecorating.
First up was the kitchen. The only thing that remained from the old kitchen was her great great grandmother and the founder of this legacy painting.
Her bedroom was next.
It got a more grown up look. She was a young adult after all.
Her bathroom got some new wallpaper and some updated plumbing.
The biggest change was upstairs. Since her parents had been gone for so long it had not been used for some time. She changed that by moving her photography studio. She liked having it closer, even though before it wasn’t very far.
Of course she made sure Sebastian was very present. His portrait was now her most treasured piece.
What happened to her old studio? Ariel turned it into a small apartment. Now that she was on her own she would need an extra income source. She had put an add in the local paper but had yet to get any interests.
It really was a nice little space. Maybe perfect for a single guy looking for a sweet girl.
The last change was the hardest of all. Ariel couldn’t bear the thought of her brother’s ashes so far away from her. This was Sebastian’s home and it always would be.
Ariel had taken some time away from work during this hard time. On top of all that had happened with her family she still had to deal with the fact that the guy she was falling for was engaged to her mortal enemy. It was a relief not seeing Eric everyday at work. However that relief was not going to last.
Eric hadn’t really spoken to Ariel since that night she had left his house so suddenly. When she wasn’t at work he began to worry and when he had heard about Sebastian he had to come check on her.
“I know that you and Vanessa have a history And I know she won’t be very happy to hear I came here but you’re my friend. I wanted to make sure you were ok. If you need anything please know I’m here, no matter what.”
It had meant a lot that Eric had stopped by the other day. Ariel thought that maybe she would be ok just being his friend. But first she would have to try and just be ok in general.
She tried to keep her mind off of everything by doing the things she loved. She still had no idea that the thing she loved was what ultimately cost her brother his life.
She also just tried to stay busy with chores around the house. They were now her responsibility.
But no matter how hard she tried each night ended the same.
Willow hated seeing her friend hurting so much. She insisted that Ariel come out with her one night. If anyone needed a night of fun it was Ariel.
Willow could tell that Ariel wasn’t exactly having fun. She needed a distraction for her. Something that will make her forget a little about how crappy life has been.
“Check out that guy over there. He’s cute and alone! You should totally go over there! You need this.”
Ariel had to admit he was really cute. Maybe Willow was right. Maybe he was just what she needed.
So even though normally this is something Ariel would have never done she remembered this was her new start. She walked over to the cute guy and would see what would happen.
What happened was that cute stranger offered to buy her a drink.
One drink lead to some flirting.
And a second drink lead to an invitation to go somewhere a little more quiet and private.
Luckily it was a little chilly that night so the roof top deck was empty.
Ariel didn’t have to worry about being cold though. She had a new friend to keep her warm.
“My place isn’t that far from here. How would like to move this somewhere even more private?”
Ariel was flattered but she was not ready for that yet. So she gave the cute guy, who’s name she found out was Joel, her number and hoped that he would call.
It was the first night in a long time that ended with a smile and not tears.
The next few days were better. Of course she missed her brother and her parents. She’d give anything to have them back. But she also knew that they wouldn’t want her to stop living. They would want her to move on with her life.
Everytime Ariel’s phone buzzed now she was hoping it would be a text from Joel asking to see her again. She was surprised when instead of Joel she got a message from Eric to meet up.
Eric wanted to meet at the Atia Gardens. It was a beautiful garden. It would have the been a place Ariel would have dreamed to spend time with Eric in, had he been single.
As Ariel waited for Eric to show up she wondered what he could have wanted to talk to her about. In his message he made it seem like he had something very important to discuss. A small part of her hoped it was that he had left Vanessa and wanted to be with her. But she knew it was more likely that he was coming to tell her they couldn’t even be friends. She certainly didn’t think Vanessa liked the idea of them being friends.
Eric finally showed up. He apologize profusely for being late. Ariel couldn’t help but blush whenever she was next to him. Thankfully it was too dark for him to notice.
Eric started to say how upset Vanessa had been when she found out about him coming to see Ariel the other night. Ariel knew what was coming next. He was here to tell her they couldn’t hang out anymore. She was so preoccupied with what he was about to say that she wasn’t listening to what he was saying.
“So what do you think about me moving into the apartment?”
It turns out that Eric had told Vanessa she was being silly. That Ariel was his friend and if that bothered her it was her problem. He also said how he didn’t like the idea of her living by herself during this rough time. The lease on his place was ending and he and Vanessa would be getting a place together after the wedding. It didn’t make much sense for him to renew it for another year.
Ariel told him she had to think about. He said he understood and would see her tomorrow at work (Ariel would be going back to work). Hopefully she’d have an answer then.
Ariel hadn’t gotten much sleep. Not only was she nervous about her firs day back at work but she always stayed up all night wondering what she should tell Eric.
After going back and forth about it she finally had an answer for Eric.
“The apartment is yours if you still want it!”
Did Ariel make the right decision? Will she really be able to just be friends with Eric? Find out next time.