Thursday, May 26, 2011

2 For the Price of 1. What a Steal!

Hey Guys it's New Chapter Thursday!!! Woooohooo!!! Are you so excited???

Not as excited as I am that Lauren & Scotty are in looooove!!! oh yeah, you heard me right. A friend of mine told me there was a kiss so I youtube that sh*t & there definitely was. And then Scotty goes "I love you baby!" So that made me happy that Scotty won because if Lauren had won their relationship never would have survived. Let's be honest. But I for one cannot wait to buy Lauren's first album!!!

Ok so if you're just joining us please refer back to last Thursday's post for Chapter 1 of Dockside. Here's Chapter 2!!!

By Janice McCrostie
Chapter 2

“What do you know,” Clare said over the back seat “Keaten McGuire, single, just in time.”
“It’s not in time for anything Clare…”
“What’s this?” Gram piped up. “Maeve? Are you harboring an old flame for the sexy young lobsterman? Can’t say I blame you, if he’s anything like his father.”
The two girls laughed, never a dull moment.
“Oh Gram that reminds me…” Maeve breathed a thankful sigh of relief as her sister changed the subject. “What is going on there?”
“Oh nothing.”
“Sure looked like something.” Maeve turned to position herself to face her grandmother across the console. “When did that all start?”
Surprised by the fact that this inquiry came from her usually un-prying granddaughter, Gram answered.
“About a year ago,” she paused and glances across at Maeve, waiting for some form of disapproval. She found none. “After Anne passed away, you know the cancer, Mike was a mess. Everyone, the town, the church, Keaten, your father, all of us tried so hard to get him to talk about it. He, he was shutting down. It was your dad who called me and begged me to go over there and ‘work my magic’ as it were.”
“I don’t think that’s quite the magic Daddy was thinking of.” Maeve said, sending the three women into another torrent of laughter.
“You do have an incredible way Gram.” Clare piped up from the back seat.
“Well thank you, I didn’t know what I would be able to do, but my son’s friend needed me. He was like my son in some ways, back then.”
“Back then.” A giggle almost escaped Maeve’s lips.
“Would you two like to hear the story or not? Because I have better things to do…” The fake annoyance was overly apparent. Gram hadn’t been really annoyed with these two girls in, well ever. They both nodded exuberantly.
Gram let out a laugh and then immediately became somber again.
“I went over, knocked and got no answer. So I walked right in and it was the saddest thing I’d ever seen. Mike was just sitting in the recliner chair, a beer in one hand, his house a wreck and CNN on the tube. But he wasn’t watching it, he was just staring.” Here she paused, turning into the driveway. Remembering, as a woman who was in love would, how sad she had felt that day, looking at Mike, hopeless and lost.
“Gram,” Clare affectionately wrapped her arms around her grandmother from the back seat. “What did you do?”
“Oh I just started talking and cleaning. I was there for hours without Mike saying a word; I just cleaned and chatted away. I talked about your father and the commune and you girls living in the Big Apple. I told him about Woodstock with a 13 year old and the seventies with a Harvard graduate. I just kept talking. And when I’d finished I told him I would be back tomorrow and I left. The next day when I came back, he had showered. Then the next week he was up making breakfast. Eventually I got him to go out on the boat again with Keaten, and then out for drinks and the rest just kind of happened.”
“Just kind of happened! Going from friend’s mother to lovers and googly eyes does not just kind of happen!” Both Gram and Clare stared across the front of the jeep, shocked that Maeve had beaten Clare to the point again.
“That is a story for another day, possibly after several bottles of wine.”
The three women climbed out of the car and Maeve immediately walked around the hood to hug her grandmother. Clare shared the sentiment and soon her arms were wrapped around the two as well.
“Oh,” their grandmother’s words were muffled. “This is going to be quite an adventure.”
Maeve could not have agreed more.

Clare found herself on the docks bright and early the next morning. She hadn’t brought her camera, she always found that observing a place first, finding the best angles without the pressure of a lens brought the best pictures. Because of this her camera remained in the trunk of her car two hundred yards away.
She breathed in the salty fishy air. Since she was a child she had always felt connected to this place, to this island, to these docks. When she was twelve she had thought it was because of The Goonies. Every summer she had come up here she waited for her adventure to begin, waited to find One Eyed Willy’s map. She never did. She had found blueberry fields and old cemeteries and George Phillips who had taken her virginity at 17. But never her adventure.
That, she thought, was for this round. Her grandmother had been absolutely correct, Clare could feel it. This time the island would bring the changes that she had waited for 3 weeks every summer for the first 19 years of her life.
She bent down to pick up an old bottle cap, wondering how long it had been there. Her fingers touched the cold metal and she stopped. This was it, this was her first picture. The first picture of her adventure.
Clare shot up, the gravel whistling under her converse sneakers and began to run across the parking lot. Her blood was pumping, all because of a Budweiser bottle cap; beat up by cars and shoes. She stuck her keys into the trunk and looked across at the spot where her inspiration began. Good, nothing had changed. The sun was still low in the sky, the boats docked behind her shot had not moved out to sea and the bottle cap had not been touched. Clare grabbed her camera out of its sacred shoe box and jogged back across the parking lot, lying down next to her cap.
Then she let loose, shooting the cap in focus first, the old B in all its glory. Then she rolled to the left and she shot the boats with just a glint of cap in a forefront blur. Through her lens she found two fishermen preparing for the day, talking about the Red Sox game the night before or whether or not it will be a successful day on the boat.
A boat crossed her path and the name of it caught her eye and she sat up to get a better look. It wasn’t clear to the naked eye so she raised her camera up and began clicking away. ‘Amore Mae’ shown blue against the white boards and Clare could only have guest whose boat it was.
“Amazing.” She said aloud and brought the camera down to her lap.
“That’s just what I was thinking.”
Clare turned and saw what she could only describe as an English professor in work boots. He was wearing a dark blue button down dress shirt tucked into dark wash denim jeans and, yes, a tweed jacket. His face was angelic, with kind lines and perfect symmetry topped off with shocking blue green eyes. The wind blew and messed with Clare’s short unwashed cut, but did nothing to the mystery man’s short blonde hair.
“Sorry,” he continued. “Did I interrupt your concentration?” His voice was refined, one of those dialects that came straight from white collared NYC, summering in the Hamptons, not on this small island off the coast of Maine. But there was something about his voice.
“No.” She stood up, wiping the dirt off her shirt and pants and probably her face. It was fruitless, gravel stuck to every part of her. “I was finished.”
“Jasper Clay.” He walked towards her and extended his hand.
She stared at his hand. Definitely upper class, she thought, they’re the only ones who still think a handshake makes an introduction.
“You have a very good eye. I never would have thought to try that particular angle.”
“Yeah well four years of photography school will do that to a girl; see the photo rather then the beer cap.”
He bent down and picked up the old Budweiser cap. Clare’s first reaction was pure anger, who did he think he was? That was her bottle cap for her photo, just because she said she was done didn’t give him the right.
“You found beauty in this? Fascinating.”
“Did you need something, directions to the closest golf club perhaps?”
It was his turn to stare. She waited, unlike Clare, worrying at what his answer would be. Usually her sharp tongue was a source of pride, but for some reason this time she felt a twinge of guilt.
“I was searching for polite conversation but apparently I’ve come to the wrong place.”
Clare grabbed the cap out of his hand. “I couldn’t agree more.”
She turned and began to stalk back to her car. She felt like a complete idiot, walking across the gravel parking lot like she was on a
NYC street
passing cat callers. Why was she shaking her hips like this? Weird.
“Maybe another time then!” he yelled out to her back.
“Yeah maybe.” Clare mumbled as she climbed into the car. She was going back to the B&B to shower, maybe then if she ran into Jasper Clay she would act like a human instead of a complete jackass.

Ok I know what you're thinking. That was too short!!! me too, so here's another one!!!

Chapter 3

Clare came into the room and threw her 5 pound bag masquerading as a purse on the bed next to her sister’s feet. Maeve shot up.
“What time is it?”
“A little before seven.”
“Jeeze Clare, what are you doing up? Did you go out already? You look like you rolled with pigs. What’s that in your hair?  What’s in that bag I think you broke my toe?”
Clare look at her sister, Maeve’s long crazy hair framed her face with a small messed of a bun hanging off the back left of her head. Only Maeve could have that many coherent thoughts three seconds after she had woken up.
“I’m going to get a shower. Go back to sleep, you don’t have to be up yet, the island world doesn’t have to begin at the break of dawn for everyone.”
She moved into the small bathroom and slipped out of her filthy jeans, letting them fall off her slim hips to the floor. Pulling her t-shirt over her head she caught the mirror image of what Jasper had been looking at. An old bubble gum wrapper was caught in her slept-on hair sprayed do and smudges of dirt were her make-up for the morning. If you didn’t count the smudged black around her eyes. I really need to start taking my makeup off at the end of the day.
Clare grabbed a tissue and cleaned off the area around her eyes. Where had he come from? Literally nowhere. But then again, she had been in the zone, snapping away pictures for… how long had it been? She had headed out around and the clock had just read . Had she really been taking photos for over an hour? If so, how long had he been watching?
She shook it off. Clare never let guys get to her like this, Jasper Clay was just another stuck up silver spooner who was thinking about slumming with the dirty girl on the docks. He probably thought she was an islander, which would make his upper crust friends pat him on the back all the more.
Or maybe...
Maybe he really was just looking for some conversation.
He obviously was from out of town, maybe he was just that, lonely and looking for someone to chat with. Had New York really made her this bitter against men?
She turned on the shower and waited for it to heat up, her hand under the spray.
Who was this guy? And why was he so interested in talking to Clare? Aristocratic asshole or lonely professor? Either way Clare knew that the next time she saw Jasper Clay she was going to behave differently. Which way that behavior went was still up in the air.
She climbed under the warm water and let it wash her intriguing morning away.

Maeve leaned back on the pillows and closed her eyes, listening to the water in the bathroom. This was it; the sun had risen on her year in Maine. It was going to be good, an adventure as Gram had said. The memory made Maeve think of Gram and her new beau, which then made her think of Keaten. How long had it been since she’d seen him??
Eight years. It had been eight years since her last long summer up here. She had made short trips, long weekends flying into Portland and renting a car. But since the August where Keaten had become more then just a family friend, Maeve couldn’t bring herself to spend more then just a few days on the island. Always being certain that there was no way to run into Keaten.
They had known each other forever, summer days spent running through the woods, swimming in cold water and night spent around camp fires while their parents drank beers on the porch. But something had happened that last summer that neither of them had expected. When Maeve climbed out of the van and walked across the yard, Keaten met her half way, picking her up and spinning her around in a tight embrace. She still remembered the look on Clare’s face, like the fifteen year old had seen this coming for years. They sat around the porch, laughing about old stories and making new ones.
“Mr. Mac Ardle, would it be alright if Maeve came to a party some friends are throwing with me tonight?”
“Well that depends on what your intentions are with my daughter.”
The horror of her father’s words was still fresh in her mind, but so was the ridiculous grin that broke out on his half in the bag face. He and Mike hooted and hollered like they had never heard anything funnier.
“That would be fine Keaten.” Mom had saved. “You go have fun.”
They drove off in his pick up truck and turned right out of the driveway, riding in silence.
“So where is the…”
“There is no party.”
He pulled off to the side of the road and threw the car into park. He gripped the steering wheel tightly in both hands, fiercely like he was holding himself back.
“Keaten, I…” and then he was kissing her. They were a mess of hands and lips and clothes, gripping at one another in the front seat of the Chevy like horny teenagers. Hell they were only a few years older than that. Maeve’s head had been spinning; she’d waited for this moment since she was twelve and noticed Keaten as more then just a boy.
He had pulled at her top and probably would have ripped it off if she hadn’t grabbed his hand to stop him. They waited in silence then, Keaten holding her down against the seat. She loved the weight of his body on hers more then anything in the world, that’s why when he moved to get up she held on. He bent and kissed her again.
“Let’s go for a walk.”
And they did, every night for the next three weeks. They spent all the time that Keaten wasn’t on the boat together. Maeve had been so starry eyed that she hadn’t noticed his mother’s looks of concern or the way he never brought her around his friends, or touched her in front of his parents. It wasn’t until their last night of the summer that everything became clear.
She had come inside for a soda when her summertime romance fell apart. As she got ice from the freezer she heard Anne’s voice from the living room.
“Keaten Alexander McGuire, for the very last time, this is not right. And I swear to God if you break that girl’s heart.”
“I think you’re probably to late mom.” His voice wasn’t smug, just knowing. “I can’t stay away from her, I need to be around her, I only have one more night.”
“And then what? She goes back to New York with what idea Keaten? Thinking that the two of you are going to be together, not knowing that you’re getting married in the fall?”
At that point she had heard enough and began to back away from the counter, leaving her empty glass she went back out on the porch. When the two returned she tried her hardest to act as if nothing was wrong, as if nothing had changed. But everything had and when he asked her to go meet his friends that night she said no.
The look on his face was one she never wanted to see again, but she kept her composure, climbed into the van and wept in silence back to the house. Then, up in the bedroom of two sisters, Maeve laid her head in her fifteen year old sister’s lap and cried herself to sleep. She never explained to Clare and that was why she was so adamant that Maeve re-ignite the flame. Every summer after that, she made it a point to have to work when the family planned their trip.

The shower kicked off and brought Maeve back to reality. Knowing now that he had never been married made matters worse. Should she have spoken to him about it? Tried to understand? Would it have changed anything? She still had two years of undergrad and numerous CPA tests to get through.
She climbed out of bed, determined not to think about it anymore. How much would she really run into him? As long as she kept to herself and her side job and her writing, all of that should keep her busy enough. Right now what she needed to do was find the side job. That’s what was most important.
“I think I’m gonna go for the shop job down by the dock.” She yelled through the bathroom door.
“Nice! Leave me with the house keeping.”
Maeve laughed “Exactly. Are you done with the shower?”
An hour later Maeve was ready to face the day. Wearing a button down green shirt and a fitting pair of jeans she walked down the stairs of the B&B. When she opened the front door the smell of pine needles hit her, almost knocking her back. That scent may have been what she’d missed the most.
After a short ride Maeve found herself in the parking lot at the docks. She parked the beamer next to a beat up pick up truck that smelled of tobacco and fish. Walking toward the shop, Maeve hadn’t remembered it being so tiny, just a small square building sitting on the corner end of the dock. The door was open, allowing a breeze through the old bate shed.
Estelle Montrose sat behind a make shift counter, obviously built by a kind carpenter from town. She had owned the shop since 1943, when her husband was lost in Italy. From what her grandmother had told her, Estelle spent every day there since. Except for Sundays, when she went to church and then, weather permitting spent the day at her husband’s grave. But now the years had failed her and it was too hard to mind the shop. Her grandsons did what they could with the upkeep, but their days were spent on fishing boats. 
 She walked up into the shop and took a deep breath, the smell of old books and history surrounded her.
"May I help you?" Estelle asked. Though she may have been getting up there in age her strong voice showed no sign of it.
"Yes. Hello Mrs. Montrose, my name is Maeve Mac Ardle; you may know my grandmother, Rose?"
The look of disapproval mixed with jealousy and admiration flashed across Estelle's crinkled face.
"I don't know if you remember me, I used to spend the summers up here, years ago."
"Of course, you’re the chubby girl who was always running around with the McGuire boy."
"Yeah, uh, that would have been... me." there was a tension in the air, the type only a little old lady could make.
The two women watched one another waiting for the other to make the first move.  Maeve hadn't expected to face judgment when looking for a part time job, but beggars can't be choosers.
"I heard that you needed some help around the shop."
"What do you know about books?"
"Well, I read a lot. And I've been a CPA for the past..."
"What the hell is that?"
"Certified Public Accountant?" Maeve asked.
Estelle nodded her head, acknowledging that it was ok for her to continue.
"I will be quick to learn your books and procedures, so you won’t have to waste your time. And I love this island so I will be able to sell your tour tickets.”
“Then where have you been?”
“I’m sorry?”
“If you love this island so much why has it been so long that I barely recognized your face?”
“Oh, I… it’s just, well…”
“Jesus woman make a statement.” Estelle turned away and began rifling through an old tin file box. She pulled out a pile of papers and handed them to Maeve. “Come back this afternoon with these filled out, I’ll have you mind the shop while I go to my doctors appointment. It’s at .”
“Ok great!  I’ll see you around . Wonderful.” Turning quickly Maeve stumbled on her way out the door. After she steadied herself and began walk towards her car she could have sworn she heard Estelle comment on her gracefulness.

They met at Ramona’s Diner for lunch and once again Clare ordered fish chowder.
“Is that the only thing you’re going to eat the entire year we’re up here?”
“No, once we are in the house I plan on having ramen noodles quite regularly, that is to save money so I can eat out more often”
“Oh nice.”
Maeve poked at her salad as she told Clare about her interaction with Estelle. Clare didn’t seem to think it was all that odd.
“She’s a just cranky old lady, what did you expect?”
“No I don’t think she is.” Maeve popped an olive in her mouth. “I think that she’s sad, she’s lost a lot.”
Clare watched her from across the table. Her big sister always wanted to be the hero to those in need, never saving herself. It had been years since Maeve had mentioned a guy in her life and Clare had wondered if she’d completely shut off. Or started playing for the other team.
“So about Keaten?”
“Clare I really do not want to talk about Keaten McGuire.” The name was a fierce whisper.
“I’m just curious. I wonder what he looks like now.”
“You’re doing nothing for the annoying little sister reputation you’ve worked so hard to get rid of.”
“Ha. Ha.”
“Clare.” She was suddenly serious. “There’s just a lot of back story there I’m not ready to… face again. Nothing huge and earth shattering, I just don’t want to.”
“Got it,” Clare took a sip of her diet coke to wash down her soup. “Let’s talk about me then.”

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