Can of Worms

Chapter 3

Classic High School Romance

Looking at the next few papers, Brianna realized that the love notes had all the makings of a high school romance. There was a birthday card in which words like 'baby' and 'sweetheart' were used, and a few notes that looked as though they had been passed between the two lovebirds in class. Brianna, in horror, realized that cell phones did not exist when her mother was in high school. Her mother and her mystery boyfriend had not been able to text each other in class. Brianna did think, however, that the notes were kind of cute.

One card, in particular, was interesting. It had a pressed rose in it, which was perfectly preserved. It read,

Happy Valentine's Day. I can't believe that we've been together for nearly a year. Time has gone so fast. I want to ask you, though. Will you be my Valentine?

Weirdly enough, the signature on the card had been crossed out with a black marker. Brianna stared at it, hoping to make out the name, or even a letter or two. She couldn't, however, and sighed in resignation. Just when things were getting interesting, she couldn't discover who had sent her mother such sweet notes.

Elaine's notes, towards the beginning, were also sweet. They were filled with attempts at poetry, which were sweet, yet sappy. Elaine had obviously felt something for her boyfriend, as evidenced in her loving words. Over time, however, Elaine's notes to her boyfriend became more distant. They became more factual, with Elaine simply asking him what movie he'd like to go to, if he wanted to come over for dinner, and the like. The emotion that was present in her earlier letters was lost. Elaine's notes also became more infrequent, dropping from one every few days to one every few weeks. Brianna wondered what had gone wrong.

Among all the papers, Brianna's eye was drawn to a simple white card. It was completely unadorned with the hearts and smiley faces that had graced Elaine's previous cards. Brianna opened it, and began to read.

This is really hard for me to say, but it has to be said. In a few days, we will be heading to different colleges. We will rarely see each other, which is sad but true. I am not looking for a long-distance relationship. I think that our relationship should end now, before things get too complicated. I hope we can remain friends, and I'm sorry. -Elaine

Brianna, even though she had never heard of this boyfriend, knew what happened next. Her mother moved to college, immediately met and fell in love with her father, and--ew----got pregnant within weeks. Elaine and Brianna's father, John, soon married. Although they initially had some troubles, and no one believed that their relationship would work out, their marriage did survive.

'I guess I'm glad that my mom broke up with this guy,' Brianna thought. 'I wouldn't be here if she didn't. And neither would Hope.'

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