All You Need Is Love

The End

Walking along the hospital corridor, Tre had never felt this exhausted, even after playing night after night and expending so much energy playing his drums he’d never felt this drained. He knew why, he’d not slept since the plane journey, almost 24 hours ago, he’d not washed and his clothes still had the disgusting smell of smoke still hanging on them but he didn’t care because he was going to see Gabrielle for the first time. She’d survived, miraculously, how he didn’t know but he would soon find out.

She was laying there in the hospital bed looking frail, her auburn hair forming a shiny golden fan on the white pillow, her face pale and her tiny purple scars stood out just that little bit more.

”Tre,” she croaked as she turned to the door, hearing him enter the room. She held her hand out to him, her gorgeous green eyes filling up with tears.

He went to her, of course he did the memory of last night and that moment when everyone thought it was her body under that blanket, the memory still haunting him but it wasn’t her after all. It was Meg.

Tre took her small hand in both of his, her hand felt freezing cold so he rubbed it to warm some life back into it then bent and kissed her forehead.

“Beth said you were here, I couldn’t believe it, you’d only just left Tre, how come you came back?” said Gabby a tear now falling from each eye.

Reaching to wipe the tears from her cheeks he spoke.

“Gabby I need to know what happened in the hotel, this Meg woman, Paul said she called you up to her room saying she was ill. It was her that started the fire wasn’t it?” he said.

Gabrielle turned away from his gaze.

“Yes, she did. She said she wanted to kill me like…like my innocent son was killed. She said I didn’t deserve to have you and that once I’d gone she’d be free to have you to herself and that you’d realise what type of person I was like.”

“Gabby I know what type of person you are,” said Tre.

”Do you?” said Gabby turning to him, her voice still croaky, tears still falling. “I’ve kept so much from you Tre, I’ve been a fool not telling you. It’s been hard.”

“I know but you know what?” He said putting his hand up to her forehead, “we have all the time in the world, I’m ready to listen if you’re ready to tell but lets get you out of here first. I brought you some things from your apartment and Lorna helped me get you some things that you left at the cottage. It seems you’re living in two places at the moment. What are you going to do about that?” said Tre.

“I’ve come to a decision but that’s…” then she started coughing hard, the smoke from the fire still on her lungs, so Tre reached for a glass of water and helped her sit forward to take a sip.

“That’s something I need to tell you about. I hope you’ve got a good set of ears because I have so much to say.” She said laying back against the pillow.

“I spoke to the doctor just now,” said Tre. “He said you can come out tomorrow, they just want to observe you for another night. I’ve also brought someone else to see you,” said Tre.

“Oh. Who?” said Gabrielle, frowning.

“Ramona,” said Tre. “She wanted to come over with me, and Frankito wanted to come too but that was going a little too far, I said I’d bring you home to see him as soon as I could.”

Then Gabriele started crying. “Lets just wait until you hear my story,” said Gabrielle.

But Tre didn’t answer, just leant down and kissed Gabrielle on the lips.

“I’m going back to the cottage, Ramona is there taking a sleep, I’m going to get a well needed bath and a few hours sleep and I shall come back later, OK?” said Tre getting up and walking over to the door. “I’ll leave your things here on the chair for when you’re ready,” he said.

Gabrielle simply nodded and watched the handsome guy leave the room, wondering if he’d still want her after what she’d have to tell him.

The nurse came in a short while later and Gabrielle asked her to bring the bag over that Tre had left.

Once alone she dug around, hoping that she’d find a small mirror in there, just wanting to check herself, to see how she looked but fumbling around in the bag she came across something cold and hard at the bottom. She brought it out and there, in her palm was the purple stone that Tre had found on his first visit. This time he’d written on it, I love you Gabby.


“So she locked you in the hotel room after throwing petrol all around it and lighting it with her lighter?” said Tre, gobsmacked at what that woman had put Gabrielle through. They were sitting together in the living room of the cottage, Gabrielle in a cosy set of pyjamas leaning onto his shoulder, he resting his chin on the top of her head and his arm around her shoulder, pulling her tight to him as Gabrielle told him of the experience.

“Yes, then she left the room but I knew by listening to the fire that she was surrounded by it, I half wanted to call out and tell her that I knew a way out but then I realised that she’d gone and wouldn’t hear me so I decided to look after myself. This Meg didn’t realise that I had a key on my fob that opens any door or window in the hotel so I unlocked the window, climbed out onto the ledge and made my way down the drainpipe at the back of the hotel. I fell and hit my head and must have been out cold for a while, that’s when that fireman found me and carried me to the front of the hotel. I saw you and Beth, you looked horrified,” she said.

“Of course we looked horrified, we thought that was you under the blanket,” said Tre hating remembering back to that moment. “But you’re here now, fit and well and with me.”

They were quiet for a while then Gabrielle shifted slightly uneasily. Suddenly she was up, going over to the dresser where she pulled out a drawer. In her hand she had what looked like a picture frame. Tre watched her study it for a moment then closed the drawer and brought the picture over to Tre, sitting down, she handed him the frame.

“This is James. He was my son and he died in an accident seven years ago,” she said quite calmly. “He was beautiful, cheeky and very loving and he reminded me so much of your Frankito. He was three when he died and I blame myself.”

Tre didn’t know what to say, he looked at the photograph of the little boy, a boy that no longer existed, a cherubic face with curly blonde hair, huge green eyes like Gabrielle’s and a cheeky, mischievous grin looked back at him and he did look similar to his Frankito. How would he be if Frankito died? It was something quite unimaginable to him.

“Remember I told you that when I was younger I wanted to do something with my life, not hang around here in Brighton?” she said.

Tre nodded, “I remember,” he said.

“Well I met this guy, Rob. He was rich, paid me untold compliments and took me out one night. He stayed nearly every week at the hotel for a couple of nights here and there on business, going out with him was against the hotel’s policy but I couldn’t resist and I didn’t care, it was as though I knew he was my way out of here. After about three months of him and I seeing each other he wanted me to marry him, real quick and said that he’d invested in a hotel in London and I could run it, it would be mine. Beth hated him and she told me later on that she really thought I’d come to my senses and see what he was like but of course, I didn’t. Pops didn’t like him either; he didn’t say anything but I just knew he didn’t like Rob. Rob’s family were very rich and I hated visiting them, they were so upper class and I know they wondered what he was doing with me and you know, even now I wonder what he was doing with me for to him I was a nothing and that’s the way he treated me.”

“We married quickly without any friends or relatives there. I couldn’t wait to get away and start my new life but once we were in London, far away from my home town I realised that it wasn’t what it was cracked up to be. He drank so much and got drunk on a nightly basis, he hit me regularly but then was apologetic straight away, and he lied to be me about the hotel saying that the investment fell through. He didn’t want me to work, he just wanted me to look after him, cater and clean and cook for his friends. He didn’t want me to have anything to do with my family or Beth and I missed them. I was a prisoner in my own home but then something changed and there was one thing kept me going and that was I fell pregnant and couldn’t wait to hold my own baby in my arms and I was sure that once Rob knew about the baby he would change.”

“He didn’t did he?” said Tre still holding on to the picture and glancing at little James every now and again.

“No, he had hardly interest in James at all, he wasn’t even there when he was born, was out on some business trip. Having James didn’t change a thing, he carried on drinking, I never knew when he was coming home of an evening, sometimes he just didn’t come home and in the morning he’d roll on in stinking of cheap perfume because he’d been with someone else.”

Tre put his hand out onto Gabrielle’s knowing how hard this must be for her.

“It was New Year’s Eve and we’d had such an awful time over the Christmas period, he was drunk for the whole time. James was just three and it was his first real Christmas that he was aware of, it was such a magical time for me but Rob didn’t feel the same way, Christmas to him was just an excuse to drink more. Anyway we were due to go to a party and James was invited but Rob didn’t want to take him. We had a huge argument about it but because James had a cold I said that we should go along and take him after all, that I didn’t want to leave him with a babysitter in case he was coming down with something worse. I wish now I had.”

Gabrielle sobbed then and Tre brought her in close. “Gabby, its OK, you don’t have to go on you know,” said Tre.

”Yes I do, I want to tell you everything Tre, to share it with you so that you understand.”

“So…we went to the party but James got worse and I wanted to leave early. Rob had been drinking non-stop and insisted on driving the car. We had a huge argument about it in the street and outside by the car he hit me saying that he was capable of driving his family home and the fact was it was only two miles away. I should have refused to get in the car, but no, I strapped my son into the back seat, kissing him…kissing him on his little flushed face then I got in the front. I should have got a taxi, it was raining, he’d been drinking, I….”

Then Gabby fell against him, “he crashed into another car, I hadn’t strapped my belt in properly because I was turning to talk to James, because I was checking that he was OK and that was all I remember until…until afterwards when I woke up in the hospital. I’d gone through the windscreen and had been in a coma for two weeks, they were surprised I’d pulled through. Rob had died and so had James and they’d buried my baby without me being there because they…they didn’t think I would.”

Then she sobbed her heart out and Tre just let go ahead and cry as he stroked her hair and kissed the top of her forehead.

”Gabby, I don’t know what to say, it’s unimaginable to me what you have been through,” he said. “I’m so very sorry.”

”So that’s, that’s why it was hard for me, I blamed myself, it was my fault that I strapped my baby into a drunkards car and let him drive, my fault for taking James to the party in the first place, he would have been safer at home.”

“Gabby you weren’t to know, the guy was a monster, hitting you like that.”

“He was a monster and I’m glad he died but at the time I wished I’d died too, for years I wished I’d died along with James. I was on anti-depressants for years.”

“I saw them, in your bathroom,” said Tre, “and I have another confession to make,” he said.

”Oh.” Said Gabby looking up at him, her face patchy and eyes bloodshot and watering.

”I knew all about James before.” He said practically whispering it. ”Beth told me, we had a phone conversation a while back, she explained everything, and thought I should know what hell you had been put through.”

“You knew?” said Gabrielle. ”You’ve known for ages and you still wanted me?” she said getting up and going over to the window. “I don’t believe it,” she said staring out, unable to look at Tre.

”Of course I still wanted you, I’ve always wanted you and once Beth had told me I understood everything,” he said going over to the window and putting his arms on her shoulders. “I love you Gabby.”

She turned to him with a half smile, “and I love you Tre Cool, I don’t think I realised how much until now.”

They hugged tightly then Tre spoke once more.

“Just one more thing, the song, the Beatles song, All You Need Is Love, why do you get so upset every time you hear it?” he said looking down into her eyes.

“Because…it was James’ favourite song, we sang it together all the time, he knew all the words and he often sang it to me. Once he’d died, I couldn’t listen to it anymore, it was too painful.”

“Oh Gabby. I understand,” said Tre pulling her into him as tight as he could.


The next day they were walking along the promenade with Ramona.

”I have something else to tell you,” said Gabrielle. “I’d sold the hotel before it burnt to the ground,” she said. “I’d sold it to Jeremy but everything will be covered by the insurance, he’s using my designs and plans and is going to build it up again.”

“So…what…what are you going to do?” said Tre. “You love your hotel, its beautiful Gabby and you put so much hard work and effort into it.”

”Yeah, I’ll miss it but I’d made a decision before all this happened. I’ve brought Jan and John’s hotel, your favourite place, golf club and all, I’m going to get Beth and her husband David to manage the hotel for me, they’re coming out to start a new life together with their daughter Lily and I’m going to need your help with the golf club, when you’re not touring and playing in your band, you have your own little golf haven.”

“You’re kidding,” said Tre. He looked gobsmacked and so did Ramona.

”Ace,” said Ramona and Gabby guessed by this action that she approved too. Tre couldn’t speak; they just walked for a few more minutes while he took the news in.

“So you’re definitely coming out to live in California?” said Tre suddenly trying to take everything in.

“Of course I am, wild horses wouldn’t stop me,” Gabrielle said.

Two Months Later

“Right, this is your last chance,” said Gabrielle. “We fly out tomorrow so, we’d better do it now,” she said.

“Do what?” said Tre.

”Go for a ride on the helter skelter,” said Gabrielle pulling him over to the brightly coloured slide. They’d been taking one last walk along the promenade and the pier. They’d bumped into that old lady that had spoken to them a while back. She was alone and Tre and Gabrielle went up to her to see how she was as she had a sad look upon her face. They’d chatted to her for ages, remembered that her name was Ethel and Ethel had sadly told them that her beloved Bert had died the previous week and she’d just felt the need to visit Brighton for one last time. She said she’d never return as it was her and Bert’s place. She’d wished them lots of luck and slowly got up from the bench and headed off to her hotel. They couldn’t move from the spot for sometime, just hugged and looked out at the sea, each with their own thoughts then suddenly, like a new lease of life Gabrielle decided to take Tre onto the pier.

“I don’t believe you,” said Tre.

“Come on, grab your mat,” said Gabrielle rushing off in front of him.

Once at the top, Tre noticed Gabrielle look slowly around her as if checking something out.

”What on earth are you looking at?” said Tre frowning at her.

“Just checking,” she replied.

”Checking what?” said Tre.

“Seeing it’s all clear so I can, do this,” she said and with that she’d pulled down her jeans and moonied.

Tre burst out laughing, “of course, you couldn’t resist could you,” he said.


Walking hand in hand eating fish and chips out of the newspaper once more along the pier gabby spoke.

“I wanted to ask you something, how do you feel about Lorna coming over to visit us sometimes? I’ve decided to spend some time with her,” she said.

”Gabrielle I’m so pleased, I was going to suggest it but didn’t know how you felt about her,” he said.

”I don’t know how I feel about her but I would like to get to know her a little,” she said.

“I’m glad,” said Tre and he was, he wanted Gabrielle to get to know her birth mother.

“Oh and I have some other news for you,” Gabrielle said, pulling him to a stop. “Remember I read your palm when you first came over?” she said.

”That old rubbish,” said Tre rolling his eyes and stuffing his face with fish.

“Yeah that old rubbish. Except one part of that old rubbish is now coming true, you’re going to be a Daddy for a third time,” she said.

Tre dropped his fish.

”Seriously?” he said.

Gabby just nodded but he’d grabbed her and just held her tight and she knew he was crying but didn’t say anything. He sniffed loudly then looked at her wiping his hand across his nose.

“Did I tell you I love you?” he said.

”You did, but you can tell me as often as you like,” said Gabby.

They started walking again, “I can’t believe how this has turned out,” said Tre. I have you coming back with me, I’m going to be a Dad and you’re going to be a Mom again,” he said looking down at her then touching her cheek, “I’ve got my own golf course and we have two properties here in England so that we or any of our friends can stay in when we come to visit. Your best friend is coming with us and…. its going to be OK isn’t it Gabby?”

”It’s going to be just fine, except, there’s one more thing I need to do,” she said and with that she ran off to the end of the pier, stripped off her clothes and jumped, butt naked into the sea.

Once she’d surfaced she looked up at the face of the man she loved, his eyes reflecting the sea just staring at her, unable to speak.

“I love you,” she shouted and suddenly, after all she’d been through, she was the happiest woman in the world.