Dr. Sara Alderson didn’t think she had a problem in the world, when she walked into the office for her first day as a partner in her own medical practice. And then the police showed up and arrested her for a crime she couldn’t possibly have committed. Twenty four hours later, after a horrifying day and night in jail, Sara comes home a different – and completely broken – woman.
Clearing her name is her first challenge, but that’s nothing compared to the task of rebuilding her shattered psyche. And the only way she can do that is with the help of the supernatural dreams, the same dreams that have nearly cost Sara her sanity – and almost got her killed – in the past.
Dream Family is the fourth book of the Dream Series.
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Beth stays for almost an hour, before she’s got to get back to her office. We didn’t actually talk much more about – about everything that happened. She wanted to, but she didn’t have the heart to keep pushing me. I’m very grateful.
My father brought Lizzie back just a few minutes ago, and now she and I are walking Beth across the street, to the Metro station underneath the Pentagon City mall. Dad wasn’t thrilled with the idea, but I have to start acting like myself sometime. If I can’t manage a walk of half a block in broad daylight with my daughter…
Anyway, we cross the street and the grassy field and then we go into the walkway through the mall’s parking lot. That leads us into the food court of the mall, with Lizzie chattering at Beth the whole way. We go through there, then through the doors and down the escalator that leads us to the entrance of the station.
Beth embraces me tightly. “I know you don’t want to talk about it now. But – please, talk about it with Brian. Tell him everything you’re feeling. You remember your wedding vows?”
…I’m standing at the altar, looking at Brian, my vision blurred both by my veil and my tears. I’m giving my vows to him, the ones I spent hours and hours working on. “All my joys are yours to share, all your sorrows are mine to ease, in calm and in storm, now and forever…”
…Beth is waving a hand in my face. “Welcome back,” she sighs. “You remember those words. And remember that they go for him, too. He’ll ease your sorrows, and throw a lifeline to you when you get caught in a storm, just like you do for him. So let him. If our places were reversed, wouldn’t you be telling me exactly the same thing?”
Yes. And I’d be just as right about it as she is. It sounds so simple, too. “If our places were reversed, would you be able to do it?”
She starts to answer, but stops her herself before she gets a word out. She can’t lie to me, any more than I can to her. “Not without fighting myself every step of the way.” She squeezes me again, so close that I can feel her heart trying to hammer its way out of her chest. After a minute or two she steps back, and she takes my face in her hands. She’s holding me in place as much with her eyes as with her hands. For what seems like a long time she doesn’t say anything, then she whispers, just loud enough for me to hear, “Sara, I love you. I always will.”
She keeps holding me there, willing me to feel everything she’s sending out to me. I can’t move, can’t do anything except try to accept it. I don’t know how long we’re there, before Lizzie inserts herself between us. “I love you too, Mommy!”
I break away from Beth and look down at my daughter. She is so beautiful, so perfect. I close my eyes, grit my teeth, lean down and pick her up. It’s so hard, but I have to hold her in my arms.
“You see?” Beth is fighting back tears, again. “You have so many people who love you. Brian, us, the twins, your parents – I could go on and on. None of us are ashamed of you, or embarrassed about you, or anything else you’re probably telling yourself. When I look at you, I’m not picturing you in a jail cell. And I can promise you when Brian looks at you, he’s not seeing you the way you were in the courtroom. I guarantee you that,” she says. “And you know I never lie to you. You know I can’t.”
“I know. And I love you, too.” I answer. It’s all I trust myself to say. I know what she’s saying is true. I just have to learn how to make myself feel it again.
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