Same Old Story: Every Monkees Fanfic Ever Written

A record store recently opened up not far from my house. It had been years since I’d been to one, so I made a point to check it out.

Out of habit, I headed straight to the M section. It had also been years since I’d listened to the Monkees.

Unsurprisingly, there was only one Monkees record there. It was sideways, so I pulled it out from the tightly packed crate to see which one it was. I didn’t recognize it. Nostalgia took over, and despite its poor condition and lack of a track listing, I bought it.

Back home, I dug my old record player out of my closet. I dusted it off, set it up, put the record on the turntable, and dropped the needle. It started off with “Last Train to Clarksville”. As “Clarksville” faded out, a slight hiss faded in. I took the record out of the player and cleaned it off. No difference. I put the record back on and tried to ignore the noise.

During “I’m a Believer”, the hiss abruptly became a high-pitched squeal. I covered my ears and squeezed my eyes shut as I stumbled towards the record player. I reached out to lift the needle, but there was nothing there.

I lowered my other hand from my ear and opened my eyes. The sound was gone, and so was the record player. The desk too, and the floor, and the wall…

It was then that I realized I could feel sand beneath my feet. I became keenly aware of the smell of the ocean breeze wafting through the air. I brushed my chestnut brown hair away from my piercing blue eyes and… wondered why I was thinking about the colour of my hair?

And why that house down the beach looked so familiar…

It slowly dawned on me. “You must be jo—” I clasped my hands over my mouth to prevent the catch phrase from escaping. I didn’t know how it was even possible, but I had read enough Monkees fan fiction back in the day to know what was going on.

I felt an uncontrollable urge to smooth out the skirt of my golden yellow sun dress. I found my thoughts drifting to my past; the hardships and tragedies of my youth that made me into the strong and independent woman I am toda—

Nu-uh, no way. If I was going to be some character in a Monkee fan fiction—the ol’ time-traveller-on-the-beach routine at that—I was not going to be a Mary Sue. That kind of story is already predictable enough without the addition of a beautiful, free-spirited, and quirky girl like mysel—

Ugh! Stop it! This is horrible! How could anyone read this drivel?

Maybe if I could just get away from this beach, I could prevent yet another cliché, cheesy, poorly-written romance novel from coming into existence. I started backing away from the beach house slowly; I wanted to run, but I inexplicably felt myself drawn towards that house.

This isn’t working. I sighed exasperatedly.

Come on, Jenny. You’re being silly. You don’t even like the Monkees any more. It’s kids’ stuff! Why, that isn’t even Mike Nesmith’s real hat!

Suddenly, I felt a weight lifted off my shoulders. I had done it! I didn’t feel exceptionally beautiful any more; I felt… normal!

“That’s more like it!” I folded my arms, satisfied. Time to go explore this fictional world—far away from that boring old beach house.

Before I could get away, I found myself hurtling towards the ground. “Oof!”

“Well, gee, ah’m sorry…” came a voice from above me.

I looked up to discover a towering, slim Texan. Texas just oozed out of his pores, so I could tell he was Texan. I also knew he was Mike Nesmith, but I knew I wasn’t supposed to use his name yet.

He held out his hand to help me up. I looked at it skeptically. “I’m fine, thanks,” I grumbled, pushing myself up. Though I desperately wanted to leave, my feet had a different idea.

“That, uh,” the lanky guitarist cleared his throat, “seems to be my hat you’re standing on, there,” he said. I looked down, and there it was: the green woolhat.

“Oh, is it?” I asked innocently. I picked the hat up. “Here you go,” I said, handing it to him.

“Thanks,” he replied, dusting the hat off.

I smiled impatiently and waited for him to leave, seeing as I couldn’t.

He gave me a strange look. “Uh… are you alright?” he asked.

“What do you mean?”

“You’re not, uh… you’re not, you know, shakin’ or nothin’.”

I raised an eyebrow. “And that indicates I’m not alright?” I asked.

“Well, usually girls who just appear on the beach here do that. Shakin’, or faintin’; we’ve had a few fainters.”

“Er, no, I’m alright, but thanks for your concern.”

“Oh, well, okay.” He walked backwards a few steps before reconsidering. “Um, should I send Davy over?”

“Who?” I asked, pretending not to know.

“Uh, cute little British guy, ’bout this high?” he said, putting his hand at just about hip level.

I shook my head.

“Alright, uh, if you say so,” he said, and walked off towards the house, scratching his head.

With the Texan gone, I found myself in control of my feet once again. I smiled. I had done it; I’d broken the pattern. I didn’t need four childish musicians to have a good time. I turned around to explore the other end of the beach, but found myself, once again, face-to-face with a Monkee.

“It won’t work,” the bass player said, shaking his smooth, shiny blonde hair.

“I’m sorry?”

“I know what you’re doing, and I’m telling you now, it’s not going to work. There are rules here. Tradition, if you will. It always plays out the same way, and there is no changing it.”

“How do you know all this? Are you TV Peter, or real Peter?”

“I’m the good parts of both combined.”

I nodded. “I probably should have known that.”

“You have two choices,” he said.

“Which are?”

“Well, you can play along, or—

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

I shuddered. “Phew! What was that? It felt terrible!”

Peter smiled sympathetically.

“So I can’t leave?”

He shook his head.

“I have to stay here?”

He nodded.

“I have to be a… a Mary Sue?”

“’Fraid so.”

Well, that’s not how I was planning to spend my day at all.

I sighed resignedly. “Okay, fine. So now what? I already ruined the ‘meet cute’.”

“Hang on; let me check something…” Peter leaned closer and peered deep into my eyes. Confused, I leaned away from him and crossed my arms. After a moment, he stood back and licked his lips. “Miiiike!” he called. I looked at Peter inquisitively. “You’ll know what to do,” he assured me.

Mike jogged over to us. “Hey Peter,” he whispered to his bandmate, “What’s goin’ on, man? Is she supposed to be here?”

Peter flashed a big smile. “Yeah. She was just a little confused is all. I’ll leave you two alone,” he said and walked away.

Mike wiped his hands nervously on the front of his jeans and approached me cautiously. “Well, uh… I guess you must be hungry after all tha… uh, no, I guess you didn’t really, um…” he trailed off. “Er, why don’t we go back to the pad, and I can I get you something to eat?”

“Guess I don’t have much of a choice,” I said. We walked over to the Monkees’ back patio. Mike held the door open for me, and we went inside. He walked over to the fridge, and I sat down on the chaise longue.

“You don’t look very impressed,” Mike noted, nervously.

“What should I be impressed about?” I asked, looking around skeptically at the uncoordinated decor.

“Well, people always seem dazed when they walk in here for the first time. Never did understand it myself.” Mike muttered and opened the fridge. “Gee,” he said. “All we’ve got is—”

“Cream of root beer soup?” I guessed.

“Yeah,” he said dejectedly.

“That’s alright. I probably wasn’t supposed to be hungry anyway.”

Mike walked back into the living room and sat down next to me. He tilted his head and looked into my eyes as if he was searching for something. “There’s somethin’ different about you,” he observed. His previously apprehensive demeanour had disappeared, and he suddenly became quite serious. “You’re not like any other girl I’ve met.”

“Oh yeah?” I asked, amused. “He’s sure layin’ it on thick,” I thought.

We sat in silence for a few moments before I noticed a fluttering feeling in my stomach. Somehow, Mike seemed to notice it too; I could detect a slight hint of a smile forming on his lips. I laughed nervously and quickly looked away before I could get sucked into those gorgeous brown…

Come on, Jenny; you promised yourself you wouldn’t let this happen,” I reminded myself. “I don’t care what Peter says; I’ve got to get out of here.”

I jumped up abruptly and wandered over to Mr. Schneider’s seat at the dining room table. “So, uh, w–what do you do for fun around here?” I stammered, not really interested in the answer. I absentmindedly knocked on the wooden man’s head, contemplating how to make my escape.

“Well, uh, there’s the beach, and the discotheque. Me and the guys were going to head down there later.” He smiled, “Heh, you see, we’re a rock and roll group called The Monkees, and—”

“I know who you are!” I snapped.

“You do? Well, hey, look, I’ve got this new song, if you’d be interested in—”

I grimaced. “Oh, a song, great,” I said sarcastically. With feigned excitement, I added, “Maybe later, Mr. Babbitt will drop by to pick up last month’s rent payment, and then we can go to the Vincent Van Gogh Gogh and run around doing silly things completely unrelated to the plot! Heh, no thanks, buddy,” I said, heading for the door. “It was nice meeting you, but I have some things to do that don’t involve being a walking cliché. Have a nice life—goodbye,” I said, with a short, quick wave. I reached for the door handle, when suddenly… BANG!

“Hiya, Mike! You won’t believe what I—hey, when did we get a girl here?”

“Ah, Micky, now look what you did! She’s out cold! I’ll get some ice.”

The drummer kneeled down over my unconscious body. “Gosharooney; I’m sorry! I didn’t see you there! Are you alright?”

My eyes fluttered open. “What the…?”

“Oh, good, you’re awake! Well, hi, I’m Micky, and—”

“I know who you are,” I said groggily, sitting up. I rubbed my forehead where the door had hit it and grabbed onto a nearby coffee table to lift myself up.

“Whoa, careful there; don’t get up too fast,” Micky warned, taking my other hand to steady me.

I looked at Micky.

He looked back at me.

There was that damn fluttering again.

Mike began to approach with some ice, but he stopped abruptly. “Ah, no. Not this again.” He tossed the ice down on the kitchen table and slumped down in one of the chairs.

“Not what again, Mike?” Micky asked obliviously.

“Oh, you know,” he said, scrunching up his face and waving his hand towards me and Micky, “The April thing. It’s just too stressful. I’m just, I’m done with it, man. I’m through. I don’t wanna do this any more.”

“Well, hey, wait a second, Mike,” Micky said, approaching the guitarist. “I didn’t mean to—”

“Yeah, but you did the whole door bit, and the looking into her eyes thing, and that’s not cool, man. You know better.” Mike walked over to me and wagged his finger at me, “Now look here, Jinny, you’ve got a decision to make.”

I flinched. “How did you know my—”

Mike ignored me. “Now, ah’m not interested in playing any silly little games,” he said, lowering his voice. He was now so close I could feel his breath on my skin. “And if that’s the way you want it, babe, then ah just don’t want any part in…”

I stopped listening. Though he spoke in a commanding and self-assured manner, his eyes said different. They revealed an insecurity and longing that he rarely expressed freely. But I just couldn’t take my own eyes off those lips. I couldn’t take it any more. I didn’t care about being a cliché. I wanted him.

“…and that’s all there is to it. So what do you have to say for yourself?”

I looked down at my feet and blushed. “Um… the fish eat my furniture?” I said sheepishly.

Mike didn’t move a muscle.

“My clothing is radioactive?” I continued.

Nothing.

“The house glows…”

“…with almost no hel—” I threw my arms around him in a frenzy, and he furiously pressed his lips against mine.

In between sucking each other’s faces off, Mike managed, “Where are you staying?”

“Here, duh,” I gasped.

“Groovy,” Mike grunted.

“Uh… I’ll just let you guys, um… yeah,” Micky said, backing out the front door. He headed to the beach in search of Peter.

Instead, he ran into Davy.

“Hey, have you seen Peter?” Micky asked.

“Eh, I think ’e’s over there,” the Englishman pointed towards the shore.

“Thanks,” Micky said and began to leave.

“’Ey, wait!” Davy called. “Why don’t *I* get to be in the story?”

“She’s with Mike,” Micky informed him.

Davy rolled his eyes. “Oh. Well. That explains it.” Davy shook his head and crossed his arms. “Those ones are nevah nice to me.”

“Hey Peter!” Micky called to the bass player. Peter turned towards him. Micky grinned and gave him a thumbs up.

“It worked!” Micky announced.

“Are you sure?” Peter asked cautiously.

“It’s definitely a Mike,” Micky assured him.

“That’s good,” Peter smiled, but his expression quickly changed. “Oh no!” he cried.

“What?” Micky asked, alarmed.

“There weren’t any time travel references!” Peter slapped his palm against his forehead.

“Well, I’m not going back and re-doing it!” Micky shook his head defensively.

Peter sighed. “Did Mike call her ‘shotgun’ yet?”

“No.”

“Then it’s not over.”


Meanwhile, at the Vincent Van Gogh Gogh…

“So…” I asked Mike, “Do you take all the girls who appear on your beach here?”

Mike smirked as he played with his soda straw. I picked up a French fry and was about to take a bite when Mike said, “Ah wouldn’t do that if ah was you.” I looked at the fry dumbly. “It’s rubber,” he informed me. I looked at the cheeseburger. “It’s plastic,” he said.

“I know,” I said. I bounced the fry on the table. “So, uh, what’s the plan here exactly? What’s on the agenda for this act?” I asked.

“Well, ah suppose there’s gotta be a song soon.”

I groaned. “Do we have to?”

“Well, ah don’t see any way around it. Got any preferences?”

“In that case…” I thought for a moment. “Are you going to be singing the song?” I asked.

Mike nodded.

I smiled slyly. “‘The Day We Fall in Love’.”

Mike’s face fell. “You must be joking,” he said.

I grinned.

“You know, ah don’t have to do this,” Mike warned.

“I think you do,” I said smugly. I leaned forward. “I think just like *I* can’t get away from you guys, you can’t stop playing your part.”

Mike leaned forward and whispered. “You’re right.”

“So how do we get out of here?” I whispered back.

“Shh!” Mike shushed me. “Not so loud!” He looked around anxiously. “If you don’t play along, bad things can happen.”

“Like what? Who’s making bad things happen?” I asked.

Mike looked away apprehensively, as if there was something he wanted to say, but couldn’t.

Me?!” I asked incredulously.

“Well? Who do you think?”

“Whoa. This is getting way too meta,” I said, sitting back. “If I’m controlling everything, why can’t I do what I want? Why can’t I leave?” I asked.

“Ah dunno,” he said. “No one’s ever wanted to leave before.”

We sat in silence for a few moments, considering our predicament. I bounced another French fry on the table. “So, how long have you guys been bringing strange girls into your pad and falling in love anyway?”

“’Bout as long as ah can remember.”

“And you never thought that was strange?”

“You think that’s strange? You don’t know the half of it, Jinny.”

I smirked. “Oh, I think I have a pretty good idea.”

Mike shook his head. “Ah’ve seen some bad things; there are some people with real messed up ideas out there. Ah’m just glad you’ve been benevolent so far.”

“I would never hurt you,” I assured him.

Mike smiled appreciatively.

“Mike?” I asked nervously.

“Hm?”

“What happens when it ends?”

Mike was silent.

“Mike?”

“Lissen, Jinny, you don’t need to worry about that.”

“Mike!” I insisted, “If you know something, you need to tell me.”

“Well…” he hesitated, “It’s just like… ah’ll go to bed one night, and you’re there, and then the next morning… you’re just… gone. Like ya never existed in the first place. Like nothing we did even matters.”

I could feel tears forming in my eyes. “How long do I have?” I asked quietly.

Mike shook his head resignedly. “Could be a few years, could be a few minutes.”

I bowed my head and nodded slightly.

“Hey. We’re gonna find a way out of this, okay?” he assured me. “We’ll make sure you stay here until we can get out. Both of us.”

I gave him a half-hearted smile.

“You okay?” he asked, reaching across the table to grab my hand.

I nodded. “Yeah, I’m okay.”

I lifted my head and put on a brave face. He surely saw right through it.


Later, back at the pad…

“Come on, guys, we need to rehearse,” Peter said, tuning his bass. The other Monkees got up on the bandstand and started getting ready. I sat on a chair in the living room.

“Any requests?” Mike asked. I smiled and started to open my mouth. “Not that one,” he smirked.

I shrugged. “Surprise me,” I said.

People come and people go
Movin’ fast and movin’ slow
I’m in a crowd, yet I’m all alone

The road is long, the road is rough
I do believe I’ve had enough
I’m gonna turn around and head for home

And I hope you’re there
And you still care
And if you do
I’ll spend my life with you

There was a knock at the door.

“I’ll get it!” said Davy, jumping down from the bandstand. He attempted to look through the peephole and then opened the door. There were three cute young girls standing there. “’Ello, luv!” Davy said, leaning against the door frame.

I looked at Mike quizzically. He put down his guitar and moved to stand next to me. “Friends of yours?” he asked nodding towards the visitors.

I shook my head.

“We get a lot of groups of friends here,” Mike told me. “It’s always the same; you’ve got the hippie, the nut, the chick, and then of course, the normal one,” he said, nudging me and smirking.

I looked closer at the girls. Peter and Micky had now gone over to talk to them. They were all very pretty, but none of the girls were as good looking as me—eerily so. “Can we get rid of them?” I asked Mike.

“You brought ’em here,” he shrugged.

“So what do we do?”

With a hint of jealousy in his voice, Mike asked, “Why are you so eager to get rid of love interests for the guys?”

“Huh!” I scoffed, “Have you ever tried keeping track of eight characters at once?” I approached the girls, still unsure of what I was going to do.

“Well, hey there, gals,” I smiled politely. I glanced at the other Monkees, who were waiting for me to say something.

I leaned in closer to the girls. They leaned in towards me. “Um… rhubarb, rhubarb, rhubarb?” I mumbled in a low voice.

“I’m sorry? Did you just say… ‘rhubarb’?” the blonde asked.

rhubarb… rhubarb?” I mumbled even more quietly.

The girls stared at me.

RHUBARB RHUBARB RHUBARB! WHY ISN’T THIS WORKING?!” I yelled in frustration.

The brunette spoke up. “Um, I think we’d better be leaving. Come on, girls,” she said, and the girls ran off.

I turned back to Mike and grinned. “Eh? Eh? D’ya see that?” Mike nodded approvingly.

The other Monkees were glaring at me. “Wot did ya go and do that for?” Davy asked incredulously.

“I told you she was a Mike,” Micky said, bouncing back to the drum set.

“Come on, guys. Let’s finish the song,” Peter said.

“Nuh-uh, not me. I’m gonna go find those birds,” Davy said, determined.

“You can’t!” I said.

“Why not?” Davy asked.

“Because, um…” I glanced back at Mike. He shrugged. Lot of help he was. I had to think fast; I grabbed Davy and kissed him.

Davy was dumbfounded. “What a kiss!” he said. “I’ve never felt—”

“Oh, shut up!” I said, wiping my mouth.

“That’s not right!” Peter said. “That line doesn’t come yet!”

“Hey, you aren’t the one writing this, buddy,” I warned him. Peter flinched.

“Uh-oh,” Micky said, knowing that look.

Peter began to sniffle.

“Oh, Peter,” I said. “Come here.” I put my arm around him. “It’s okay. I’m sorry.”

Peter burst out crying. I looked to Mike for help, but he had his arms crossed and was giving me a look. I looked to the drummer. “Micky?” I pleaded. Micky bounced over next to Peter.

“It’s alright, Pete,” he said, patting his bandmate on the back.

While Micky comforted Peter, I dragged a still grumpy Mike out to the back patio. “Don’t tell me you’re mad because I kissed Davy! Come on, it’s not like I wanted to!”

“Then why did you?”

“I—I don’t know.”

Mike shook his head. “No, it’s alright. It’s good. There needs to be conflict.”

I nodded seriously. “Right. How long do we have to keep this up?”

Mike avoided my gaze, and once again, it looked like there was something he wasn’t telling me.

“What?” I urged.

“Well, if we stop fighting, that means there’s no story, and no story means…”

“You wake up tomorrow, and the radio’s playing ‘I Got You Babe’ again.”

“What?”

“Never mind. What were you going to say?”

“I was gonna say that means we live happily ever after, which means…”

“The end.”

“Right.”

“Well, come on then,” I said, “Let’s go back inside and create some more conflict.”


Inside the pad…

Davy and Micky were nowhere to be found. Peter was sitting on the bandstand with his guitar, writing a song. He looked up as we entered. “Are you guys still fighting?” he asked, concerned.

I looked at Mike. He walked away. I looked back at Peter and shrugged.

Mike went into the bedroom, and I sat down next to Peter and sighed. “What should I do, Peter?” I asked him.

Peter continued working on his song. “About what?”

“About Mike.”

“What about him?”

“I don’t think he likes me any more.” I added an exaggerated sigh for dramatic effect.

“I didn’t notice. You two are always together,” Peter said sarcastically.

“Is that jealousy I hear?” I asked teasingly.

“Maybe you should give him some space. It’s just, the band still comes first, you know? We’ve got rent to pay.”

“I guess so,” I said. “Hey Peter?”

“Hmm?”

“You remember what you told me on the beach earlier? That I’m stuck here?”

Peter looked up. “What about it?”

“Well, I was thinking… aren’t you stuck here too?”

“What do you mean?”

“I mean, you can’t get out either. But maybe if we all worked together—”

“Wait, hang on. Why would you want to get out?”

“Well, it’s kind of a boring life, you know? Always doing the same storylines over and over—”

“It’s not boring; we like it here!” Peter said defensively.

“No, that’s not what I mean at all; this place is awesome, but… don’t you think there could be something… more?”

“How could you say that?! We’ve got all we need right here! Friends, music, love; what else do you need?”

“Freedom, Peter!” I cried, “Freedom!”

Mike emerged from the bedroom. “Hey, what’s goin’ on out here? I heard some yellin’…”

“Michael!” Peter said, running over and clinging onto the guitarist. “Talk some sense into her—she wants to leave!”

“Hey, now wait a minute. It’s gonna be alright, Pete; we can all leave together.”

Peter backed away, shocked. “You too, Michael?”

Just then, Micky and Davy came through the front door.

“Hey guys! Good news! The girls said they would come over tomorrow night!” Micky announced.

“Good!” Peter said happily, clasping his hands together. He turned back to me and Mike. “See? You can’t leave! There’s lots more story about to happen! Davy hasn’t even gotten starry-eyed yet! Come on, guys, let’s play a song!” Peter frantically started adjusting his microphone stand.

“’Ang on, ’ang on,” Davy said, putting his hand on his chest. “Wot’s goin’ on ’ere?”

“We’re leaving,” Mike announced.

“What?” Micky cried, “You can’t leave The Monkees! We can’t be a trio! We need you, Mike! Wahahaha!”

“No, the story, Micky,” I said. “We’re leaving the story, and you can too, if you want.”

“How are you going to leave?”

“Well, I’m in charge; I’ve got to be able to get us out of here somehow,” I reasoned.

“Oh, you’re not in charge!” Peter sneered.

“Then who is?” I asked.

Peter sat down on the steps of the bandstand and started to sniffle. “I just wanted us to be together again, like we used to be, and now look what’s happened.”

“Peter?” Mike asked cautiously, “What are you saying?”

“We had so much fun when we were together. I thought we could do it all over again. Please don’t be mad at me.”

“Wait, you mean, you’re in charge?” Jenny asked.

“Petah? Is wot they’re sayin’ true?” Davy asked. “Am I to understand you’re the one that brought us ’ere?”

“Hang on, so…” Micky looked down at his body. “Am I… real? Do I even exist? Wha—whaa!?” Micky bit his nails as a pained look overcame his face.

“Of course you exist; you’re The Monkees!” Jenny pointed out.

“Now hang on, Micky’s got a point. People are always sayin’ we aren’t a real band. What if… what if they’re right?” Mike asked.

“Petah,” Davy said, getting mad, “Now, look, man, you brought us ’ere, so you better get us out, or I’ll—”

“No, Davy!” Mike said, holding the little Englishman back. “Don’t make him angry! You don’t know what he’ll do!”

Jenny and the other three Monkees backed away from Peter.

“Oh no, don’t!” Peter pleaded. “I would never hurt you! I just want us to be happy—like we used to be!”

They all stood in silence, Peter on one side of the pad, and everyone else on the other.

“Please don’t be like that,” Peter said. “We used to be so happy; we were a family.”

The three Monkees looked at each other, trying to make sense of what they had just learned about their bandmate. They always knew their situation was a bit strange, but they had never considered that Peter was in control of it all. Now they had a decision to make: could they still trust the innocent looking bass player? And what would happen to them if they didn’t?

After a few moments, Micky relented. “You know, he’s right. We were a good little band. And we’ve got a nice life here. Why would we want to give this up?”

Peter smiled at Micky. “Thanks, Mick.”

“Come on, Davy,” Micky said to the tambourine player. “You get a new girl every week. Every day sometimes. You must be happy here.”

“I guess you ’ave set me up with some nice birds, Petah.”

The three Monkees looked at Mike. Mike looked at Jenny. “Will you stay with us?” he asked her.

“It’s not right,” she said, blinking back tears. “This isn’t real.”

“How do you know what’s real?” Mike asked.

She sniffled and looked down at her feet.

“I’ll tell you what’s real. Look at me,” Mike said.

She shook her head stubbornly. He lifted her chin upwards. She continued to avoid his gaze as tears streamed down her cheeks. With a tenderness one would not expect from the tough Texan, he gently wiped away her tears. She finally gave in and looked into his eyes. Mike took her face in his hands and kissed her passionately. Her knees went weak as her body pressed into his.

“Baby, that’s real.”

She took a deep breath. “Okay. I’ll stay. On one condition.” She looked at Peter. “You don’t write any more cheesy crap like that.”

“Deal,” Peter agreed.

“Now how about a song, shotgun?” Mike asked. Jenny nodded. The group got up on the bandstand.

All men must have someone, have someone
Who would never take advantage
Of a love bright as the sun
Someone to understand them
And you just may be the one

And they all lived happily ever after.