Author's Note: Here it is - the last chapter! Let's goooooooooo!
By the time Chase finished talking, we were both crying. He was standing right in front of me, holding my hands and searching my face for a response. I just looked up at him with tears in my eyes and a small smile on my face, and nodded.
I don't think it was lost on either of us that I responded the same way he had so many months before, standing in the same room, practically the same spot, when I had asked to take a break.
"We can try this again. But we have to get better at communicating if we want to make this work this time. We've always been able to tell each other everything. That can't change now."
He chuckled a little and nodded his head in agreement.
"Trust me," he said. "I learned my lesson about keeping secrets from you back at PCA. With the exception of that little box right there," he said, nodding to the black box on the counter, "I haven't kept anything else from you since high school."
"I can't believe you've had that for years and still haven't asked me." I shook my head slowly and stared at him in disbelief.
"Zoey, we were 22 when I bought that. Are you telling me you wouldn't have thought I was crazy if I proposed to you right out of college?"
The man had a point.
"Well…" I began. Then we both started laughing. After a minute or so, the laughter subsided and we both tried to catch our breath.
"Chase?" I asked.
"I never stopped loving you, you know? I asked for a break so I could work on the collection and gather my thoughts. I thought it might be beneficial for us, in the long run. But it had nothing to do with the way I felt, and still feel, about you."
I looked into those green eyes I loved so much, and he wrapped his arms around me. It felt just like being home.
"And I will never stop loving you," he said, with a soft kiss to the top of my head. I let out a sigh and closed my eyes.
Yes, this was home.
Author's Note: Well, there it is! If you've made it this far, I hope you enjoyed it! Please, please, please let me know what you thought! Thanks so much! :)