Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
For most of Llanview's residents, it was the beginning of just another ordinary fall day. The sun shone bright overhead and a brisk cool breeze circulated throughout the ideal suburb. A colorful array of golds, greens, reds, and yellows decorated the tree's foliage while also creating an artful display beneath. The chill in the air made it necessary to grab a light jacket when venturing out and they were many doing just that. The shopping centers, boutiques, and cafes were abuzz with activity. For a remaining few, however, it proved time for a melancholy farewell.
"I can't believe Llanview won't be your home anymore," Nora commented mournfully. She hugged her friend and long-time colleague. The reality of a new normal finally setting in. "I can't believe you will be so far away." There were many times she leaned heavily on Evangeline but now no more.
Evangeline replied, "We can still keep in touch."
"Please," Nora snorted and grabbed her shoulders. "Evangeline you are an employee of Shuster and Lewis. The most prestigious law firm in the state of Washington. I doubt you'll even have time for yourself."
Evangeline took her comment to heart. "I promise to make time for myself and my friends."
"You'd better." Nora gazed at Evangeline with a known expression and held her hands tightly. "Stay in Llanview. Come and work with the prosecutor's office again. We'll give you whatever you want and need. Tell Shuster and Lewis to kick rocks."
"Kick rocks...Nora." The two friends giggled. "You're making this way too hard."
"Sorry for being utterly selfish." Nora wrapped a grey scarf around her neck then lifted her purse upon her right shoulder. Lunch had been palatable but somber. Her favorite grilled chicken sandwich and ice tea tasted indifferent. She was already late for a scheduled appointment although it didn't seem to matter at all. One last hug, a resigned look, and smile - Nora was gone.
Evangeline brushed a couple of tears from her eyes. Her brave stance was quickly faltering. These goodbyes were never easy.
Now back at her apartment, Evangeline took a quick tour of the empty rooms - bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, living room. She, Layla and their cousin Elise did a pretty good job of cleaning, taking various pictures along the way. The inspection went well. Some final paperwork and handing over her keys remained. The bare walls stood idle, devoid of the many memories. She decided to take some things with her while others were locked away in storage. Evangeline exhaled. The one-bedroom sure didn't feel like hers anymore. Time and familiarity made it her place of refuge. She would choose to leave the secrets, doubts, and fears behind. She would leave friends and foes alike who either blessed her with a kind word or imparted a dire warning. The hallway mirror beckoned her. One last critique - leather jacket over green sweater dress; hair styled in a loose bun. She didn't have time for makeup except for an appropriate lip gloss. Her eyes fell on the keys that she cradled between her fingers. She shifted them around and around then pressed her lips together, "Its time."
"If Victor Lord Jr. thinks he can block my getting in contact with him then he better think again," Evangeline grumbled angrily pushing the elevator button hard. It was a wonder that he didn't have security blocking her entering the building. She folded her arms, leaning against the elevator's sidewall. Yeah, she understood his reaction. Todd or Victor the personality stayed stubborn.
Once the elevator doors sprung open Tina, Victor's long-time personal assistant, focused directly at her without blinking behind her trendy eyewear. The time on the clock reminded her that there was only so much time remaining. Tina quickly stood as Evangeline advanced towards her desk. Tina's light green eyes surveyed her from head to toe. She never really understood the relationship between her boss and the beautiful lawyer. From the outside looking in, there was nothing odder. Anyone could see that their personalities were vastly different. It didn't phase them the least. At times she speculated that at a different time and place, theirs maybe something more but that was neither here nor there. At the moment she knew Evangeline was leaving Llanview behind and Victor was pretty ticked off.
Evangeline prepared herself for battle but soon found none forthcoming.
"I was waiting for you to come," Tina remarked matter-of-factly.
That comment caught Evangeline off guard. She stood with her mouth slightly ajar, unsure of what to say next.
"He's in his office brooding," Tina remarked with a smirk. "He'll talk to you regardless."
Evangeline removed her jacket and set it down on one of the side chairs.
"Evangeline just go away!" He heard the door click open and inhaled her familiar Chanel scent. "I believe I won't have an assistant tomorrow!"
"I think you will!" Tina retorted calling his bluff before shutting the door behind her.
Naturally, he refused to turn around. The view of Llanview's superb skyline preoccupied his attention. She saw that he wore a blue dress shirt, dark jeans, and suede shoes. His hands pushed into his jean pockets.
"So are we going to say goodbye like this?" She asked as she approached him.
The finality and the coldness in that one word wouldn't deter her. She wouldn't play this back and forth game. "I can see why you chose this office space." She strolled up next to him. All he had to do was pull back the vertical blinds for this exquisite view.
He turned his head slightly and said, "Say what you have to say, then go."
Evangeline was horrified to see his unshaven face, unkempt hair, and bloodshot eyes. "Victor..."
"Well, at least I took a shower and brushed my teeth if you were wondering."
"I know that." There was no mistaking the smell of a man who hadn't. She put her palm to his forehead then his cheek. He saw it as a sweet gesture but misguided.
"Were you drinking?"
"No...I was just up all night. I'm heartsick Evangeline," he unashamedly confessed. "My best friend is leaving and I can't and won't beg her to stay even though I want to so badly." Evangeline couldn't pull her eyes away from his. Those intense blue eyes radiated a plethora of emotion at any given moment. "You waited for the perfect opportunity, didn't you?"
She wouldn't have left without his life having a real sense of stability. When he discovered his true identity, it threw his life into another round of turmoil. Leaving him then became the last option for her.
Her eyes retreated. "I just need a break from Llanview."
"A break from all the major and minor characters affecting your life daily."
"There's only so much you could have done, Victor. I need to do this for myself - for my sanity. I have to rediscover that passion that I once had for my career. I've lost something along the way."
"You care too much."
He finally pulled her into an embrace. "I'm going to miss you. Don't you dare forget about me."
"How can I?" She placed a chaste kiss on his lips and embraced him again. "This isn't goodbye for us." She lost her train of thought and quickly ran out of the room. He didn't stop or chase after her. The best thing was to let her go. He cared for her too much not to do so.
Victor plopped down into his chair and sighed heavily. This day wouldn't get any easier. At least he was writing his first novel to preoccupy his thoughts.