‹ Prequel: So Close Yet So Far

Meant to be

Nothing Like Home for the Holidays

"Can you hurry up?" Franky pleads to the tour bus driver.
"Just sit down," the driver grunts, "I'm driving the best I can in this storm." Franky peers through the window and sees the street sign.
"Stop the bus!" he yelps, "I'll run it."
"What?" The driver half-gasps. Franky pulls the lever to open the door.
"Tyler, take care of my shit!" he yells to his band mate. He jogs out of the bus and down the street. Rather then head back to the recording building where taxis were waiting for the band members to take them home, he planned on running the two blocks to Ana-Lynne's dorm house. It was Christmas Eve and they were supposed to go to her parents' house.

He continued jogging down the street and slipped on a patch of ice.
"Mother fucker!" he yelled as he got back up and continued on his way. His only hope was that Ana-Lynne hadn't left yet. He got to the building and pulled open the door before making his way briskly up the stairs. He got to her room and knocked on the door; her roommate answered and his face fell.

"Ana!" she called. Franky smiled again, Ana was still there.
"Franky!" Ana squealed happily as she wrapped her arms around him. "You're so cold."
"Yeah, I jogged two blocks."
"You could've just double parked in front of the door," she sighed.
"No, we were running late and I saw we were just down the street so I got off the bus." He rambled. She kissed him a bit before grabbing her coat.

They took her car to drive to the restaurant where there were due for dinner. Her parents lived in Seattle and drove down for the day and then planned on going to Hawaii for a vacation Christmas day.
"So," Franky asks slowly, "Is your roommate going anywhere tonight?"
"Her train lives at eight." Ana smiles, "And yes sex is on the menu."
"Score!" Franky says comically.
"But first we have to deal with my parents." Franky had met her parents once before, he went home with her during some long weekend. Her father made them sleep in separate rooms, but other than that her parents were pretty nice.

The restaurant had a valet so they didn't worry about parking.
"Hi, Tremblay party," Ana-Lynne says to the hostess.
"Right this way." She instantly spots her parents sitting at a table near the far end.

"Hey Ana," her father says cheerily, "And Frank." That's the one thing Franky couldn't stand, the fact that her parents called him 'Frank,' it reminded him too much of his grandfather. After hugs and hand shakes they sit down.
"So what's new?" Jeremy, Ana's father, asks.
"Well," Franky says slyly, Ana grins.
"We got engaged!" Ana-Lynne bursts out, she'd been nervous about telling them but she just couldn't hold it in any longer.

Jeremy's jaw drops, almost to the floor, and Ana's mother, Hannah shifts in her seat. Hannah never liked the idea of her daughter dating a younger guy and now they were engaged on top of it.
"Well," Hannah swallows hard, "Congratulations."
"Yeah!" Jeremy says enthusiastically, "This is great news!" A great weight is lifted from the young couple and unknowingly passed onto the older couple.
"When do you plan on getting married?" Hannah asks trying to keep high spirits.
"Well, we were thinking about May but Franky's sister is due to give birth that month so we decided June."
"A summer wedding, how nice."

"So your sister is pregnant?" Jeremy says clearly. "How old is she?"
"Twenty-five," Franky says calmly, "Why?"
"I thought she was younger than you."
"Oh no, I have a younger brother, older sister," he laughs.
"Okay, you nearly scared me there."

"I'm just going to the washroom," Ana-Lynne says calmly as she gets up from the table and walks away.
"So," Jeremy says awkwardly, "How's . . . . work?"
"Well, my band just finished touring and we want to go back in studio by February."
"That's great," Hannah says nervously, the tension is broken by Franky's cell phone jingle.
"Excuse me., he says walking to where the washrooms are to get away from the noise.

"M'boy, where are you?" his father's voice asks.
"I'm at the restaurant."
"Weren't you supposed to come home first?"
"Got caught in traffic so I had to come straight here," he says quickly.
"So when do you think you'll be home?"
"Err tomorrow morning," he says awkwardly, he knew what comment was coming up.
"Welcome back sex eh?"
"Dad, you're disturbing," Franky mutters as his father cackles laughing.

"They're too young to get married!" Hannah hisses to her husband.
"Ana will be twenty-one by then."
"Jeremy! We were twenty-three when we got married!" she exclaims.
"Hannah, we can't just stop them from getting married."
"He's younger than her!"
"Okay we both need to calm down," Jeremy says gritting his teeth, "What do you want to tell them? You can't get married! They'll do it anyway, behind our back." Hannah lets out a deep sigh.
"She'll still have a whole year of college left," Hannah exclaims, "What if she drops out?!"
"Shh, they're coming back."

Franky and Ana sit giddily at the table.
"You're going to continue with college when you're married, right?" her father asks.
"Yeah of course," Ana says rolling her eyes.
"Okay, I was worried for a second there."

According to the younger couple, dinner went smoothly, but to the older couple it was a disaster. Everything was a disaster and they couldn't wait to leave for Hawaii the next morning. Ana-Lynne and Franky were more than happy to get back to her dorm and do as previously planned.