By: Sam Crescent

She didn’t own the shop. Hilary owned the shop, and was an expert baker. Suffering with dyslexia, Autumn had never done well through school, or with exams and the random tests they liked to do.

What she excelled at was baking, cooking, and enjoying the pleasure of being around people.

The Fowler family had their success in Summer, the oldest daughter. Autumn, she was the screw-up. She couldn’t even keep a man.

At least she was nice.

Summer was the bitch.

Autumn was the nice one.

“You could if you applied yourself. Your little issues are not a big deal if you actu—”

As always, her sister complained about her learning difficulty as if it was just sheer laziness. Summer used to tell all of her friends that Autumn was just thick and stupid.

“I’m not going to make it for the pre-dinner drinks, or the speeches. Hilary needed me today, and I promised to work. We had a charity event, and I had already agreed to that months in advance.”

“You’ve known about our parents’ anniversary since you were a child, Autumn.”

She rolled her eyes. Their parents loved each other, and wouldn’t appreciate Summer’s big lavish get-together. Her sister was only using it as a way to suck up to her colleagues, or to brag about how her parents had stayed together.

“I’ll be there when I can, Summer. I’m trying, but there is traffic everywhere.”

“Fine. Fine. I’ll just have to deal with this all by myself. What a surprise.”

Autumn rolled her eyes and clicked the button, ending the call. There was no point trying to reason with her sister. Summer didn’t know the meaning of the word “reasonable”.

“Come on!” Autumn screamed at the traffic wishing she’d left ten minutes earlier, and then she wouldn’t be worrying about trying to get on time to her parents’ anniversary party. The next hour passed, and finally she was able to pull off on her section, zooming through the streets, and suddenly she heard a crack, and when she looked out of the back of her car, blooms of white smoke followed her. “Crap!”

She always forgot to get her car in for any kind of service or check. Dropping her head to the steering wheel, she could have happily sobbed.

“This is not happening to me.”

There was a knock on her window, making her gasp. Sitting up, she looked over and frowned. She recognized the face staring back at her. His hair was pulled back like she remembered so many times before. The shirt he wore revealed his array of tattoos that had started when she last saw him. He was much bigger than she remembered, more muscular. Carter Blue stared back at her. The same Carter Blue who used to date her sister.

Leaning over the car, she rolled down the window. Her car didn’t have the fancy electrical windows.

“Well, well, if it isn’t little Miss Autumn.”


“So you remember me?”

I used to fantasize about you.

“Kind of hard to miss. You dated my sister for a little while.”

“Yeah, until she decided to move on.” Carter ran his hand across the door. “She’s broken.”

“Who?” Autumn asked.

“Your car. From the smoke I’d say it’s your head gasket. You’re pretty lucky. I was just heading out.”

She stared past him to see that she’d actually come to a stop right in front of the mechanic shop, his shop.

Her heart was racing as she stared at him.

“What are you waiting for, beautiful?” he asked.

Carter always gave little compliments like that. He unnerved her, and it wasn’t in a bad way either. Out of all of the boyfriends Summer had brought home, Carter was the only one that Autumn had been jealous over. He was just everything. He didn’t give a shit what anyone thought of him, and he never tried to impress anyone.

She remembered a time sitting at the dining room table, trying to work through her English homework and being on the verge of tears when he was heading back from the kitchen with his soda can. She hadn’t wanted him to see her crying, so she’d gotten up from the chair, wiped away her tears and tried her hardest to pretend nothing was bothering her while grabbing a soda, too.

When she’d come back into the dining room, he’d had her laptop open, and the paper that she’d been working on was on the screen, only it had a different color background. She’d looked at him, confused.

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