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Katie grinned, patting his leg. “Sean, cool. You’re staying home!” she said.

Sean groaned. “My plans aren’t really solidified yet,” he said.

“You’re going to ask David to work with you,” Katie told him.

“Hey!” Sean protested.

“It’s all right. I think it’s a great plan,” David said. He lifted a hand toward Katie. “We really do have to get some sleep.” She stood to join him, glancing at Bartholomew.

“Get along now, you cute little kiddies,” Bartholomew told her. “I’ll be here, I swear.”

Katie kissed her brother’s cheek carefully. “We’re a short drive away. Call if you need anything! I’ll be back in the morning,” she promised.

David shook Sean’s hand. “Jamie is on his way up to spend some time with you. He’ll be here soon.”

“I’m all right. I’m really all right. I want to come home.”

“They’ll release you soon,” David told him.

“Hey, David,” Sean said.


“You’re really interested?”

“I’m really interested. My intentions are not to leave home for quite a while now,” he said.

He took Katie’s hand and they left the hospital room. Katie peeked in on Sam, but his nurse said that he was resting comfortably, so they tiptoed away.

In the car, Katie was silent for a while.

“I heard you talking in the kitchen when I woke up,” she told him.

He glanced her way. “Yes, you did.”

“You were talking to?”

“Bartholomew, of course.”


“I don’t see him. I can hear him.”

“Oh. What was he saying to you?”

“Ah. Well, they’ve gone on. Tanya, Stella and Danny.”

“I’m so sorry for all of them.”

“Well, Stella and Danny were together.”

“Poor Tanya.”

“I don’t know. Some people believe that we forget about the ones that were most important to us in this life. I don’t believe that. We don’t forget those who mean everything to us here.”

“You sound sure.”

“I am,” he told her.


He looked over at her, a slanted smile cutting his features.

“Because love is our finest human emotion,” he said. “And losing it is the true depths of hell.”

“That’s lovely,” she said.

He pulled off the road suddenly, turned to her and took her hands. “Katie, I know that I’ve barely had time to really get to know you, for you to have time to know the real me. Your brother asked me my intentions. Well, my intentions are to stay here. To be with you. And, I’m thinking, when the time is right, when you’re sure…well, then, my intentions become absolutely old-fashioned and honorable. I want to marry you. I want to raise a family-and live happily ever after, of course.”

“Ah!” she said.


She leaned over and kissed him.

“I do know you,” she said softly. “And I already know that my life without you would be hell. So-ah! I love you. And yes.”


“Yes, I’ll marry you!”

He smiled.

They drove on home.

And that day, as they turned onto Katie’s street, it seemed only right that the angel parade was going on, and that fireworks went off as well, down at Mallory Square, just as they pulled into the drive.

They stood by the car, watching the lights in the sky.

David pulled her close.

“Home,” he said.

And so they were.