Sampler: Things He Hadn’t Told Her by Vicky Whedbee

They made a pact as boys. Can they keep that pact as men?

Chad Edwards and Cole Rivers have been best friends since grade school. “Blood brothers forever” they declared after Chad saved Cole’s life.

Years later in college at the University of Tennessee, Chad is a student of Sports Medicine, and Cole is the Vol’s star quarterback. That’s where they meet Maggie Thompson.

Ask either one of them and they would tell you, “Maggie is perfect”.

So, it’s no surprise they both fall in love with her. As fate would have it, Maggie falls in love too, but only one of them is the recipient of her affections.

It’s what happens next that will surprise you.

They made a pact as boys. Can they keep that pact as men?

Vicky Whedbee

Sampler: Things He Hadn’t Told Her

After dinner, Maggie asked them if they would like to accompany her to the OCI on Friday night for karaoke. They both agreed to go with her. “Maybe I can get you guys to sing,” she added, teasing.

“Yeah, that’ll be the day,” Cole replied, laughing.

***

Their dinner that night proved to be as fun as the first time, including the fortune cookies. None of them knew it then, but from that point on, Maggie would never miss another Chinese night dinner, and Cole and Chad would never miss another Friday night karaoke with Maggie.

***

Several weeks later they were at OCI looking over the list of songs Maggie could choose from to sing in the contest. They put in an order for some wings and a round of sodas. Cole had to forego his usual beer because he had his first game of the season coming up, Maggie never drank and Chad just wasn’t in the mood for it.

After ordering, Cole slipped off to go to the bathroom. While he was gone, Chad and Maggie noticed a girl they had never seen before sitting at a nearby table, trying but failing to hide the fact that she was crying.

“I feel so bad for her. I hope she’s going to be okay,” Maggie whispered sympathetically.

They turned their attention back to the list of songs but Maggie’s eyes kept drifting over to the girl, who was crying even harder now. Chad was touched by the amount of concern and compassion he saw on Maggie’s face for this girl that she clearly didn’t know and it melted his heart. Then apparently Maggie couldn’t take it anymore because she said, “I’ll be right back.” She went over to the girl’s table, approaching her from the front so as not to startle her. When the girl looked up and Maggie was confident that she had been seen, she made her way around the table and gently placed her hand on the girl’s shoulder, then bent over and said something in her ear. The girl nodded, so Maggie pulled a chair over closer to her and sat down.

Chad tried not to stare but he was so moved by Maggie’s selfless act of kindness that he found it hard to tear his eyes away. He couldn’t hear what was being said, but the girl was talking and Maggie was listening intently. They talked back and forth, and after a few minutes, the girl looked as if she was feeling a little better. When Maggie got up, the girl was smiling as she reached out and took Maggie’s hand giving it a squeeze. She looked up at Maggie gratefully. Chad could read her lips as her mouth formed the words “Thank you”. Maggie leaned down and hugged her, then headed back to their table, where Chad sat watching her, mesmerized. Her eyes were shining and there was a glow on her face. Then her eyes met his, and at that moment, Chad fell in love with Maggie.

***

He sat numbly letting this realization wash over him as Cole returned and they continued their quest to find a song for Maggie to sing. But Chad was only pretending to help, lost in his own little world. Cole was saying something about judging by everyone else’s singing, she could choose the alphabet song and have no competition, but before her turn came, Big Rod called Cole’s name. Hearing Cole’s name announced brought Chad crashing back down to earth. Cole grinned at them as he got up and headed toward the karaoke stage, leaving Maggie and Chad looking at each other, stunned.

They were wondering what was going on as they watched him go straight up on stage to Big Rod. They both knew there was no way he was going to sing. He would never do that. But looking pretty confident, he did take the microphone and as Rod Stewart’s Maggie Mae began to play, Cole started to sing. He was looking directly at Maggie, leaving no question as to who the song was intended for. Unable to believe it, she stood up, her eyes locked on his, amazed that he was doing this. He was out of key and probably couldn’t have sounded worse to everyone else there, but incredibly, no one made a sound. It was as though they knew it had taken an incredible amount of courage for him to get up there in front of everyone and sing. Maggie knew it too, and to her, it sounded beautiful! It was at that moment Maggie fell in love with Cole.

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