The heat of the sand was burning her skin through the towel. As the minutes progressed she could feel the skin on her legs become redder and redder.

Summer. That lovely season during the year where teenagers run wild day in day out, where tourist attractions are always filled, and the sun always causes human bodies to change.

Sam heard a child's laugh and lifted her head from the towel to see three children and their father - so she assumed - building a sandcastle a few feet away from her. The smiles on their faces as the man placed another bucket of sand on top of the already high pile.

The memories associated with such an activity where few for Samantha. As a child, family holidays to the beach where a rarity. The only memory she had of coming to the beach as a child was when she first saw her father hit her mother.

She felt a hand on her back. Rolling over she smiled at the face that greeted her.

"You coming in or not?" He asked her calmly.

"Eventually." She smiled at him.

"Well let me tell you, in there," he indicated the ocean which had a nice set of waves, "it's a lot cooler than here." He indicated their present position, 20 metres from the wet sand.

"Oh I don't know, right here seems like a pretty good spot right now." She smiled at him. He smiled with her, leaning down to plant a soft kiss on her lips.

Sam sat bolt upright in bed. She looked around the dark room, at all the figures that made up her life. The dresser that was on the opposite wall to the bed through a ghostly shadow where the wall behind it was light. There was a scrap of light coming from below the bathroom door.

The gentle snoring of the man in the bed beside her made the dream she had just experienced confusing. The man was not her husband. She lay back down in the bed, glancing at the clock beside her. The time was 4.14, making her dread the next hour and sixteen minutes.

She rolled over, snuggling up to the man who had placed the gold wedding band on her left hand.

"I'm going to DC tomorrow morning Sam, let me sleep." She could hear the tiredness in his voice.

"Jack, you're leaving at 6.30 and it's currently 4.15. I can't sleep when I know you're going to be away for a week." She could feel a lump forming in her throat but knew she had to control herself.

Samantha Malone. The day she had accepted his proposal was one of the happiest days of her life. She knew all about his past, the marriage he had right after college, the two daughters that marriage had created, and the loss of belief that his first wife and caused him to receive.

She knew how he felt on the day he filed for divorce. She was a young FBI agent on her first day in the Violent Crimes Unit. She was eager to prove herself. She had seen the look and carriage of a broken, dragged man. But at the end of the day, he appeared with the team as a man liberated from a fledgling life.

She knew he was waking up as he rolled over so that he was facing her. She could feel him looking into her eyes, she could just see the light gleam in his. "I'll never leave you Sam." He whispered before he kissed her.