Darling Daughters

So… I’m going to be THAT guy…

There is another 14 Chapters of Darling Daughters…. This is the end of the year and so rather than continue posting from Darling Daughters in 2021 I am going to do something different. So please, if you have enjoyed the story so far please go ahead and buy the complete story from amazon. Thank you and Happy New Year!!!

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Darling Daughters

Chapter Thirty


Summer had quickly become a workaholic. It didn’t help that Elizabeth was still acting a bit strange since finding out that she had inherited the bakery. It was made worse by Cassandra and Jamie liked to over indulge in their steamy relationship.

Summer hadn’t slipped under the radar though; she was the Darling at Darling College. When she wasn’t hiding in her dorm with loud music in her ears and assignments all around her trying to shut out the noise from the next room she was in the library with her assignments.

Summer was constantly concerned for Elizabeth who still blamed herself for her ex returning. He still hadn’t been caught. It had been over a month. Kingston had helped Summer out by installing a security system, which was little used thanks to Elizabeth’s visitors. The only time it was used was the time when Elizabeth got infuriated and asked them all to leave, only to bury herself into Archie’s files.

Reluctantly Summer agreed to go to a “social” with Cassandra and Jamie just to shut them up. She went with them but got bored of their affectionate public displays. Summer had had a drink or two and sat at the table twiddling her thumbs. Cassandra told Jamie to keep an eye on Summer who wasn’t in the spirit of it before she had to leave for an emergency with her lab partner.

Summer was a little tipsy, and being the Darling had attracted a little too much attention leaving Jamie to act as a buffer to the boys trying to “bag the Darling”. With a few more drinks in her system Summer was sort of floating to her dorm. Or perhaps it was just the sensation of Jamie trying to make her walk.

Jamie shouted for Cassandra but she wasn’t there. He tried to steer a very drunk Summer into her dorm who was now obsessed with surfing on the sofa. Summer stumbled as she tried to drag her weight towards the sofa. Jamie caught her and held her up a little. She looked at him smiling before confusion contorted her features as he kissed her. She pulled away coming to her senses she told him to leave using the arm of the sofa to keep her standing more upright. She heard him slam the door before she fell on the sofa.


Summer woke to the sobbing noise coming from Cassandra’s room. Her head was throbbing, her throat was sandpaper and the noise was awful. She peeled herself from the sofa and stumbled towards Cassandra’s room she propped herself against the wall as she asked what was wrong.

“Why doesn’t he love me?” Summer’s brain felt foggy as she swayed towards Cassandra. Eventually Cassandra managed to explain that Jamie had broken up with her. Summer asked “why?”

“He decided it wasn’t working, apparently he likes someone else. How could he do this?” Summer held Cassandra as she cried trying to ignore the bother of all hang overs.

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Darling Daughters

Chapter Twenty-Nine


The funeral was exactly that, a funeral. Simple, but beautiful. The birds had sung the whole service. Elizabeth had been reluctant to go, later she confessed to Simon why. At night he had been staying at the manner to help out, it was that night that Elizabeth had asked him to stay and talk to her. She told him that it was her fault. No matter how many ways he tried to change her mind, it was unchangeable.

There had been so much distance that Summer didn’t want to leave for college, but it seemed everyone in the town had stepped in her way to make sure she couldn’t find a way to stay behind to be with Elizabeth. There seemed to always be someone coming or going. They kept asking Summer to do the town proud. Simon had been the most helpful, helping her pack now that Cassandra had left. Simon even helped take all her things to the dorm suite.

The whole place felt strange. The dorm room was empty and shew as the first to arrive. The view from the window was pretty even for a ground floor. There seemed to be something faintly magical about the place again with the hustle and bustle. It distracted her for a moment.

With everything inside Simon said his goodbyes and rushed back to the Diner, or to see Elizabeth as Summer suspected, she smiled at the thought. It was time to start unpacking. Hooking up the speakers in her usual playlist she hit the shuffle and let it go.

Summer ignored the sound of the door closing, on a roll with her unpacking for the moment. A face appeared at her bedroom door.

“Cassandra?! What are you doing in here?”

“Isn’t it great? I’m your dorm mate,” she smiled widely, “I made a special request, and well here we are.”

“Oh, wow, yeah that is, sure, that is something. But why is Jamie in the living room?”

“Oh haven’t you heard? We are, well, we are together. I hope it’s not weird, it kind of just happened. But here we are the three musketeers.”

Summer nodded and said hello to Jamie before turning back to her own unpacking.

A while later she made her way into the living room where Cassandra had left a few boxes, Jamie had disappeared to sort his own dorm. Moving the sofa with Cassandra was a bit of hassle to get to a point of agreement but it got done.

Eventually Summer had some alone time to call Elizabeth. Elizabeth told her not to worry, Simon was going to keep her company and watch some bad rom-coms with her apparently he was determined to see her smile. Summer was genuinely glad.

After a bit of awkward conversation Elizabeth finally said the thing that had been on her mind. “I miss you, I wish you were here, tomorrow morning I have to go to a meeting, with Caroline’s attorney. Apparently she has left me something in her will.”

Summer offered to come back but Elizabeth insisted she stayed at the dorms tonight. She would be fine, she promised, repeatedly.

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Darling Daughters

Chapter Twenty-Eight


Simon began to wake at the sound of Summer’s voice echoing in the hall demanding to see Elizabeth. He shook the sleep and fog from his brain and rushed into the hall. Seeing her soothed him a little, the relief in his eyes shone through as he guided her into Elizabeth’s room. “She looks so… small” Summer’s voice sounded as small too. Simon began to tell her what had happened.

That was until Elizabeth’s eyes fluttered open. It was an hour or two of doctors and nurses rushing around until Elizabeth was allowed visitors.

It was in that moment that Summer rushed to Elizabeth’s side once the doctor had left the room that Simon said something sweet without thinking, “you two could be sisters, the way you stick together being all stubborn like that.”

Elizabeth smiled for a half second before asking, “how is Caroline?” No one knew. Summer asked Elizabeth what happened. “It was my ex, Steve. He found me.” Summer saw the significance, Simon just stood confused when she asked, “you’re sure it was him?” Elizabeth nodded. The policemen stepped into the room to ask questions, privately.

Summer was reluctantly extracted from the room by Simon, Cassandra who had remained silent till now spoke in the hallway. “Who is Steve?”

“He is her ex, evil ex. She said he was a monster, but this? This is something else.” The words had escaped her with no air, the hall felt suffocating, like every word had begun to suffocate her. Her cheeks flushed she was angry. She wasn’t the only one Simon seemed to absorb Summer’s radiating anger. Cassandra told them both to go and get some air but neither wanted to leave.

It was torture, watching Elizabeth in the room, tears were falling from her eyes. Summer couldn’t take it anymore. She stormed in. Standing by her side she took Elizabeth’s hand and refused to leave. The police reluctantly agreed to Summer but refused to let Simon in.

Summer stood by Elizabeth and held her hand as they asked their questions. Finally, with most of them answered Summer asked one, “what about Steve?”

With reluctance they confirmed that he had disappeared but tried to reassure them there was a warrant on his head. That wasn’t the only news they had. They had little choice but to inform them, that due to her injuries and the smoke, Caroline hadn’t made it through the night.

Elizabeth broke down, knowing the news before the words had escaped the officer’s lips, that fraction of doubt of telling her. Summer held tighter to Elizabeth.

Simon had been listening through the crack of the open door. He strode in beside the girls ignoring the officers. Tears had been staining his face, but the fresh wave was unmistakeable as he moved closer to Elizabeth who was shuddering with her sobs.


It was a few days before Summer was able to take Elizabeth home, with her left arm and right leg in casts she had to be wheeled out. It was going to take a little while to mend her broken bones, but longer than her heart Summer had thought. Simon picked them up from the hospital. The hardest part was the drive past the bakery, Elizabeth had barely spoken since they knew about Caroline, she had barely said or done anything.

Cassandra helped them settle, Summer had asked her to stay and she had obliged. Summer disappeared to Lavenders florist and picked some flowers. Returning to the manner, with a little help she wheeled Elizabeth out and put the flowers on her lap.

It felt as though the town was staring, no one knew what to say or do. There was an abundance of sympathy. Everything seemed so isolating.

When they reached the charred remains of Oaks, the reality hit harder. There where stacks of flowers, teddy bears, cards and photos laid so gently by the police tape.

Summer put the brakes on Elizabeth’s chair and took the flowers from her lap. Elizabeth stayed wilfully silent, even with the tears threatening to engulf her.

Summer turned to see Simon emerge from the Diner. It all felt too distant, like a million miles separated her from everyone and half that between her and Elizabeth. She didn’t know how to reach her. Summer turned back to Oaks with the flowers in her hand and put them down on the pile that had been built over the days.

Elizabeth was shuddering. Summer crouched beside her, the flecks of broken glass left behind still glimmered in the sunlight.

The girl’s shirts were sodden with the waves of tears. Simon didn’t know what to do, he just stood beside them. The sun kept shining, the birds singing and it just felt wrong. Everything had changed and stopped and yet there was nature still determined to do as it pleased. It infuriated Summer, but consoled Elizabeth like Caroline in that moment was there.

Summer kept trying to pull herself together, to keep herself together for Elizabeth, as much as she could. But when Cassandra made her stand, it felt too hard. Summer broke into Cassandra’s shoulder while Jamie stood beside them both.

They were no longer alone outside Oaks. A crowd had gathered around them as the sun was setting. They had been there all afternoon, save for some trips to the Diner to use the bathroom. Simon had brought teas for everyone over to the crowd. Kingston had spilt most of the coffee’s he had brought over, but the thought was there.

Tissues were spread between them and candles as everyone stood waiting for it to get darker. Slowly the regular church goers stopped their prayers and began to sing. One by one the crowd picked up the song as the candles were lit.

Finally, late in the evening the girls were made to go home to sleep. Casandra and Simon stayed behind. Summer hadn’t been sleeping but sat in her room staring into the darkness. Simon insisted on being there in case Elizabeth needed something.

There was no arguing, no one had the energy.

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Darling Daughters

Chapter Twenty-Seven


Summers absence over the two weeks had lead Elizabeth to be a hive of productivity. The house was clean, the laundry and ironing had been done. In Elizabeth’s opinion the house was perfection. Except for the mess and chaos that Summer brought with her. Elizabeth had gotten so used to hanging around with Summer it was like she had lost a sister, even if it was for two weeks, she felt lonelier now than she had in a long time.

Thankfully Summer was due back the next morning, something Elizabeth was now well prepared for. She was very well prepared at home, but at work she wasn’t prepared for what had happened over her lunch break. In her absence the bread dough ball had become a mountain and it was going to take a lot of work for her to tame. Elizabeth found herself cursing this particular recipe before setting to work.

Caroline had closed up while Elizabeth finished baking off the dough that had been put into the hot ovens. Caroline was elbow deep in the display stands when the door opened. The man she had heard rumours of, the rude one, always in the hoodie and grey slacks stood in the doorway. The one who had barged past so many people.  Caroline told the man they were closed, but he smiled calmly, “it’s ok, I’m just here to see Ellybeth.”

Caroline looked at him for a moment, no one ever called Elizabeth that. He put his rucksack down on the chair and made it clear he would wait. Caroline disappeared to the door way, still keeping an eye on the man. “Someone here to see you.” Caroline grimaced, Elizabeth walked towards her, “I’m not sure you want to see this one.” Elizabeth walked into the room buttoning up her cardigan. “I’ll check on the ovens honey, yell if you need me.”

Elizabeth nodded, not quite noticing Caroline’s tone. Her face went white as a sheet when she heard the man’s voice.

“No need to button up for me, I’ve seen it all before Ellybeth.” He smirked striding across the room, “you look surprised to see me, did you really think I wouldn’t come and find you honey, I’ve been keeping an eye on you.”

Elizabeth stepped back into a table. “Oh I wouldn’t back away like that if I were you, it could be” he paused turning his smirk into something more sinister, “dangerous.”

Elizabeth couldn’t move, it was like she had been pulled back in time, “you’re already in enough trouble as it is, I know what you did. Did you really hate me that much?”

Elizabeth tried to pull her body back towards the oven room where she had faintly heard Caroline’s footsteps retreat to a minute or two earlier. But she couldn’t find a way to get her mind and body to act as one as he continued.

“I didn’t think you had it in you,” he was closer now, his body casting a shadow over her. “You used to say you didn’t think you could do something like that, I remember how against abortion you used to be. Yet here you are, standing like nothing ever happened. Like we never happened. Like it never existed.” The venom in his voice was the same poison he had used before, Elizabeth remembered it.

His words, his tone, everything had gotten under her skin, her blood ran hot and she remembered everything he had made her afraid of. Suddenly all the rage and hatred she had for him was right under her skin instead of blood it was hot lava and it seeped from every pore.

“I didn’t have an abortion. I didn’t kill my baby. That was you. That night I ended up in hospital, again, after you lost control, again. I miscarried. It took losing my baby to make me see I had to leave. You are poison, I wish I had done it sooner.”

Elizabeth held her fists tight by her side, she had stopped cowering and stood straight.

He took Elizabeth’s words in, his face flushed, it wasn’t the shame that lingered it was anger. She was right. He refused to believe it still, “you’re a liar. You did it. It is your fault.”

“Steve, you and I both know it is your fault. You are pathetic. You kept using your girlfriend as a punching bag, even when you knew I was pregnant. Men like you, they aren’t men at all. You don’t deserve pity, or sympathy, or forgiveness. You deserve nothing, not from me, not from anyone.”

Steve snapped, he reached for the chair behind him and lifted it over his head to bring it down on Elizabeth. Elizabeth put her arm out to protect her, it took the force of the chair and there was a rather audible snap that turned her stomach. “Not the first time you’ve done that is it?”

He turned around and began throwing tables and chairs around. “It’s you, you do this to me. You turn me into this monster!”

Caroline came in through the doorway at the noise. Steve kept throwing things and this time he threw a napkin dispenser in Caroline’s direction. It hit her hard in the side of her head. She was still standing but her body swayed on the spot. Elizabeth moved towards her with her other arm to keep her standing upright.


Excited for their plans this evening Simon locked up the Diner to go to see Elizabeth. The sound of shouting and the smashing of glass caught his attention. A sudden burst of flames erupted in the bakery and a man, a rather familiar looking man ran from the building pushing past a group of teenagers that had tried to block his way. They couldn’t stop the man, he barged past like a bull.

Simon felt a swarm of panic in his throat. He yelled at the teenagers to call for help.

Somewhere behind the flames Simon saw a shadow in the smoke moving back. Taking a chance Simon ran inside trying to get past the flames that flung themselves at him and the fresh wave of air from the door. The heat hit him like a wall. He couldn’t get past.

Simon swore and ran around to the back exit. He heard the teenagers in the background calling him back, calling the emergency services. The commotion was attracting attention but Simon didn’t stop. He reached the back door to find Elizabeth struggling with Caroline trying to force her to stay awake, trying to force her to move.

Simon called out into the growing smoke, he heard Elizabeth shout back, she told him to take Caroline. He pulled Caroline, Elizabeth told him she was right behind him, she was choking on the smoke but she pushed herself. Simon left carrying Caroline. He put her on the grass and turned around looking for Elizabeth. She hadn’t come out.

He ran back into the building to find her. Something heavy had fallen and pinned her to the ground. Simon tried to pull it off her, it was hot. He pulled his sleeves over his hands to try again and shifted it enough that he could pull Elizabeth out, her scream pierced through his ears. He pulled her up by her arm which made her scream again, the arm she had used to block Steve’s chair. The smoke was growing even thicker.

He pulled her out of the building and onto the street, the smoke tumbled out behind them but the heat pursued them, stuck to their sweating skin.

The paramedics pulled them apart to assess them before the town saw them being taken in the ambulances as the fire crew arrived to tackle the inferno.


The police had gotten access to Simon first and began to ask him questions. His main concern however was Elizabeth, remembering how Caroline and Elizabeth had disappeared almost immediately as they arrived.

Simon kept asking for answers but no one could give him any. He tried to call Summer reaching voicemail he stuttered, he didn’t know what to say or how to put what had happened into words that made much sense, he kept telling her to come straight to the hospital.

They had bandaged Simon’s rather lucky minor burns and kept an eye on him for the smoke inhalation. But he was free to go. Instead he found out where they had taken Elizabeth.

He walked into the room, her body was limp in the bed, she had been knocked out with sedatives. The cast on her arm and leg looked so big and she looked so tiny to him. So fragile. He sat in the chair next to her bed and kept watch until he finally gave into the heavy feeling in his eyes and dozed off.


Summer switched her phone on as she got off the plane, in moments it was alive and buzzing with texts and voicemails. Summer left baggage having heard the messages she was panicking, struggling to wait for her case, desperate to leave. She found Cassandra waiting for her.

Thomas and Kingston had left voicemails filled with wild speculation. Simon had stuttered and rambled, he never rambled. Zach had texted her to say he would keep an eye on the house for her. No one told her what she wanted to know most, is Elizabeth ok?

Cassandra pulled Summer into the car with her suitcase and they drove straight to the hospital as Summer sat silent trying her best to just breathe.

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