Legends & Lattes

“I’m… not really good at speeches. So I won’t try to make a good one. But I wanted to tahnk you, all of you.” Her eyes suddenly stung. “This… all this… This was a gift you gave to me. And I…” She grimaced at Cal, and then at Tandri. “I didn’t deserve it. The things I’ve done in my life… I don’t have any right to this kind of good fortune.

“But more than this place, I don’t deserve you. If there was any justice in the world, I’d never have met you, much less have even a scrap of your regard. And for a while… I thought maybe I’d cheated fate to have you near me. That I was bending the rules–forcing some impossible streak of luck–and any moment, you’d find out who I really was, and then you’d be gone.”

She breathed out, slowly.

“But what as stupid thing to think. Unfair to you. Did I think so little of you? Did I think you couldn’t see who I was, really? Was I foolish enough to believe I could make you see something other than what was there?”

She looked down at her hands for a moment.

“So. I might not deserve you. And you might forgive me too much. But I’m damned glad to have you.”

[Legends & Lattes by Travis Baldree]

The Dead Romantics

“I believe people. Even if it’s weird, even if it doesn’t make sense, I want to believe them. I want to see the good in them. I give my heart to everyone I meet and I put it in everything I do. And sometimes it hurts–often it hurts, actually…” And I glanced back to Ben, wishing I had taken that moment on the porch and trapped it in a jar. “I can’t ever control how someone else treats me, but I can control how I choose to live and how I choose to treat others. And I’d worried about what other people thought and what other people wanted from me for years because I actually thought it mattered.”

[The Dead Romantics by Ashley Poston]