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Happy Ending
by Amanda Berendt
Copyright Sept 2003

    It was a warm, sunny June afternoon. Moms and Dads were milling about in the parking lot of the school, taking pictures of and with their children. Myra Schanke snapped a photo of her daughter, Jenny, before giving her a quick hug and sending her off to join the others.
    "Myra!" came a voice from across the crowd. Myra turned to locate the source and saw Natalie fighting her way through the throngs of people.
    "Natalie," Myra exclaimed as she embraced the other woman. "I am so glad you could come to share Jenny's special day. I know it means so much to her. You're practically family."
    Natalie smiled as she took off her wide brimmed straw hat to fan herself. "Thanks, Myra." Then added with a gasp. "Why is it always the hottest and sunniest day of the year?" Myra smiled at the truthfulness of the comment. It was definitely a scorcher.
    The two women continued to chat for a while. Then Myra checked her watch. "We can't really wait any longer. We should be getting to the seats." Natalie nodded as she scanned the crowd once more, then followed Myra through the crowd towards the bleachers surrounding the athletic field. Eventually, the reached the stands and began scanning the rows.
    "Myra! Nat! I'm over here!" came a voice from the stands. The women looked up and saw Schanke wildly waving his arms from a prime spot right in the middle. "Come on ladies, I got a great view from here!"
    Natalie and Myra climbed the steps until they reached the row where Schanke had saved their seats. Excusing themselves, they climbed over the people already seated.     As they settled into their seats, Natalie again scanned the crowd. She began to worry when she saw the crowd at the gates thinning out as people found their seats. It would be starting soon.
    Then as she was about to pull out her cellphone, there was a commotion at the end of the row. She laughed when she saw him trying to juggle the baby in one arm and both the diaper bag and the camera bag in the other.
    "Nick," she said as she relieved him of their eighteen month old daughter. "What took you so long? I left you at the car over half and hour ago."
    "Sorry, Nat," he answered with his little boy grin. "I couldn't find the baby wipes." Then he turned to Schanke and Myra. "Congratulations. You know I wouldn't have missed this for anything." He pulled the bags off his shoulder and took out his camera. He sat down next to his wife and daughter just as 'Pomp and Circumstance' began to play. Down on the field, Valedictorian Jennifer Schanke lead the graduates onto the field.

-Fin-