Chapter 3

"John maybe part of our being great together and lasting this long is our mutual understanding of the othersí need for the dreaded wordóĎspaceí.

"Evangeline, you know Iím not trying to get you to change who and what you are. Ever since we started up Iíve known you travel light and are committed only to your pursuit of adventure, and sometimes to me and what we have and nothing else." Shifting her off his back John gathers his arms around her, turning her to face him and continues, "You like living this way, fine. You donít have to upend your lifestyle for me, get your own place and we can, I donít know, date like I hear other people do and we never did. Know that I want you with me; I admit Iím thinking it would be niceÖfor a change to come home to someone when that someone is you."

"I want to be with you everyday too, I find the idea doesnít scare me like it used to but this would be all the time living, day in and day out, John. Can we handle that?"

"Oh, Iím glad itís not just can I handle it; not just my adjustment." Stroking her arm and wrapping his fingers in her hair with his other hand he smiles with relief. Just being able to touch her was nearly too much for him to process.

"Nope, thatís what Iím saying. We can take it slow. Iím ready to move closer to you and living in the same country, not to mention the same state and city is a big step forward. We can still give each other living space with lots of visitation." Van pushed Johnís hair out of his eyes and accepts his light kiss near her lashes and nearly painful hug. "I know you wonder how deep it runs with me; I donít know if Iíll ever be able say ĎI love youí but I am focused on us. I know that I want us to work and for this thing between us to thrive. I just think we have to be patient with each other John. Weíve both been alone and living our lives as we saw fit for a really long time now. Patience, can we grant each other patience?"

"Tell you what, youíre here now and this is a big move youíre making coming back across the ocean. Live with me while youíre moving and once everythingís in place for you here if you want to get your own place, thatís cool by me." He looks uncertain for a moment but has to ask, "Anyway it goes weíre together, right? Secrets and all?"

"Secrets and all. JohnÖbelieve me, my biggest, single, only purpose right now is to ensure I donít do anything that willÖ" pausing Van gives him a heartfelt kiss whispering "I just donít want to make it impossible for you to stay with me. I donít want to hurt you. Iím fighting with everything I have not to."

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