Sylvia Dallas closed her eyes and sank back into her pillow. Why was it that even after 50 years she couldn't forget Jerry Thompson? Why did she still dream about him and that terrible day?
Since then, Sylvia had married twice -- once divorced, and once widowed -- and had four children and seven grandchildren. Surely there had been more impactful moments in her life than Jerry's kiss, Jerry's love, Jerry's betrayal?
Debbie stuck the gift box on the highest shelf and didn't look at it again | Source: Shutterstock.com
Sylvia and Jerry had met shortly after she finished high school, and she had fallen head over heels in love with his wide cheeky grin and his wacky sense of humor. Sylvia had been sure Jerry was The One.
She'd learned that she was wrong on Valentine's Day 1972. Sylvia had the feeling Jerry was setting up for a surprise, and she was curious. Her curiosity had always overcome her good sense, so she decided to go to Jerry's house and take a peek.
At that time Jerry was living in a small apartment at the back of his mother's house to save for his own house -- he'd explained. Jerry had invited Sylvia for dinner that night, but halfway through the afternoon, she decided to just 'drop by.'
No matter how old you are you're still in time to fall in love.
She walked around to the back and peeked through the window of Jerry's dining room, expecting to see a romantic dinner set-up or a sea of flowers, but instead, she'd seen Jerry in another woman's arms!
50 years after his betrayal, Sylvia still wasn't over Jerry | Source: Pexels
Worse of all, the woman was her best friend, Janice! Sylvia staggered under the double blow. Her boyfriend and her best friend! Sylvia went home and lay down on her bed.
Over and over the image unreeled in front of her wide-opened eyes: Janice and Jerry, their mouths glued together by lust, her hands gripping his shoulders like a drowning woman...
Sylvia had no doubt that their embrace had continued on to Jerry's bedroom, that they had consummated their betrayal in every way. A few hours later her mother knocked on her bedroom door.
"Hun," her mother said. "Jerry's just called, he says he'll pick you up in twenty minutes!"
The preparations for a romantic dinner wasn't what Sylvia saw | Source: Unsplash
Sylvia stood up and went to her dressing table mirror. The glowing happy girl she'd been this morning was gone forever. She looked bitter and unhappy and angry.
"I AM bitter and unhappy and angry!" Sylvia said. "And it's all written on my face."
When Jerry pulled up in his Corvette twenty minutes later, Sylvia was waiting on the porch. Jerry practically bounced up the few steps and reached for her with a happy smile.
"Baby," he said. "I love you so much..."
Jerry was kissing her best friend Janice | Source: Unsplash
Before she knew it, Sylvia drew back her hand and slapped him. "Liar!" she screamed. "Filthy cheat! I loved you Jerry Thompson, but I know about Janice!"
Jerry was stunned. "Janice? What are you talking about? I love you, Sylvia!" He slipped his hand into his pocket and brought out a little blue box with a white bow. "Look, this is for you..." But Sylvia knocked the box out of his hand and onto the floor. "Get out! I never want to see you again!"
Jerry was pale as chalk. "I'll come back tomorrow when you're calmer and we can talk," he said in a quiet voice. Then he turned around and walked away and Sylvia never saw him again.
Early the next morning, she was on a bus to Los Angeles to stay with her aunt Bea, and a few weeks later, she met her first husband, Ronald, and married him on the rebound.
Sylvia wouldn't let Jerry explain | Source: Pexels
It hadn't been a successful marriage, mostly because no matter what Ron did, he just couldn't please Sylvia. Deep in her heart, she knew she still loved Jerry, so after two miserable years, she divorced Ron.
Her second husband, Steve, had been kind and loving and a little older, and he didn't remind her of Jerry at all. With Steve, Sylvia had found peace and contentment, and after the children were born, she'd been very happy.
She and Steve had forty years together until he died suddenly from a massive heart attack. The whole family had been devastated by Steve's parting, and after two years, Sylvia still missed him.
So why wasn't she dreaming about Steve and their happy times together? Why was she dreaming about Jerry and his kisses? "Sylvia," she told herself. "You're 72 years old, it's time you put away this foolishness!"
The next morning she took a bus to Los Angeles | Source: Unsplash
That afternoon, Sylvia had a very special visitor, her grandson David who had become her best friend since Steve's death. "Gran, what's wrong?" he asked straight away.
"Oh David," Sylvia sighed. "You can always tell when I've got the blues!" And so Sylvia told David all about Jerry and her broken heart and how it had led to some very foolish mistakes.
David frowned. "So what was in the box?" he asked.
"The box?" asked Sylvia, bewildered. "What box?"
Sylvia married another man on the rebound | Source: Unsplash
"The blue box he gave you!" David exclaimed. "So what was in it?"
"I don't know!" Sylvia said. "I put it in my bag, but then I didn't have the courage to open it. It's on the top shelf of my wardrobe..."
At David's urging, Sylvia fetched the box, and her grandson watched with bated breath as she unwrapped the ribbon. Sylvia opened the lid and gasped. Inside sparkled a beautiful diamond engagement ring!
"But...If he was going to propose, why was he with Janice?" Sylvia asked.
Sylvia finally opened the box and found an engagement ring | Source: Unsplash
"Why don't you ask him?" David said, and opened his laptop.
Within hours, David had found Jerry through social media and sent him a message to organize a meeting with Sylvia.
Sylvia was nervous about seeing Jerry after so many years, but she was also determined to set her ghosts to rest. When she saw Jerry walk into the restaurant for their meeting, her heart started pounding.
He smiled that same wide smile and ran towards her. Jerry was hugging her and whispering in her ear, "I've been missing you for the last 50 years! You are the love of my life!"
Sylvia was stunned and stammering. "I only opened this last week," she explained, holding out the little blue box. To her astonishment, Jerry dropped to one knee and held out the ring.
Sylvia's grandson contacted Jerry | Source: Unsplash
"Sylvia, I love you. No one else has come close. Please be my wife!" he said.
"But Janice..." Sylvia protested.
"Janice threw herself at me. I never wanted her, I kicked her out of my house," Jerry explained. "I was going to explain it all to you when you calmed down, but you ran off..."
"You love me?" asked Sylvia with tears in her eyes, and then Jerry was kissing her just like in the dream, and the 50 years didn't make a bit of difference. A few months later, they got married, and David gave away the bride.
After 50 years, Sylvia and Jerry were together again | Source: Pexels
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