Six months later, Fez and Emberlyn were married. She moved out of the apartment and into his grand house and her life began anew. She took to her role as a prominent attorneys’ wife, hosting parties and organizing lunches for charitable causes.
Just before her 21st birthday, her past once again came calling but this time it wasn’t for the threat of blackmail. She received word that her mother had died from a Heroin overdose. She put on a cavalier face when she told Fez and acted like she didn’t care.
Fez knew about Emberlyns’ troubled past. He knew that her mother had tried to blackmail Mr. Carrington and he also knew that she had tried to sell Emberlyn.
He told her that she should do whatever it took to make sure her mother had a decent burial. “The past is the past,” he said “but she was your mother. Maybe the last thought that went through her mind before she died, was about you.”
Emberlyn wondered how she had been so fortunate to have found not one, but two remarkable men. Not a day went by that she didn’t whisper a prayer, thanking God for bringing them into her life.
She had her mother laid to rest in the graveyard near the trailer park, aptly called Stoner Cemetery. She and Fez were the only attendants. There were no tears. She left no flowers. She just stood in silence and then walked away. The only thing etched on the headstone was her name, date of birth and date of death. Emberlyns’ past was now dead and buried.
After her mothers’ funeral, Fez surprised her when he said “we need to get to the airport.” Emberlyn looked at him and said “what do you mean?”
“I’m taking you to Paris for your birthday,” he said. The little girl in her came out when she squealed “but what about my luggage?” Fez smiled and said “it’s in the car.”
Emberlyn had never been out of the state of Pennsylvania, much less out of the country. She had traveled far from her humble beginnings as the bastard child of a prostitute. Now she was traveling to a place she could have only dreamed of before. The most romantic city in the world. The City of Light.
When they arrived, Emberlyn felt like she was living a fairy tale. They walked hand in hand down the Champs-Élyées. They kissed in front of the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe and The Louvre. It was a memory that she would never forget but it would be only one of many.
The next year while they were having dinner, Fez asked “do you know who Oskar Schindler is?” Emberlyn said “yes, we learned about him in school.”
“I am a direct descendant of one of his Jews,” he said. Emberlyn knew that he was of the Jewish faith but he didn’t practice. “I thought we’d go to Mt. Zion in Jerusalem, where he is buried. I want to take a pebble from the dead sea and put it on his grave. My grandmother gave me a little stone before she died. She had always wanted to visit him but she never had the chance. I promised her that someday, I would go so she could see it through my eyes.”
“Then we’ll go,” said Emberlyn “and she can see it through both of us.”
Emberlyn didn’t know what her faith was. She wasn’t even sure if Beck had really been her last name. When she asked Fez if he would like for her to convert to his faith, he was moved. “Would you really do that for me?” he asked. “I would do anything for you,” she said. “You have given me a wonderful life.” Then she hesitated. Fez asked what she was thinking. She said “can we still have a Christmas tree?”
He let out a belly laugh and said “of course. You have also given me a wonderful life and I would never deprive you of anything.”
To be continued______________________