Home > Maybe We Will (Silver Harbor #1)

Maybe We Will (Silver Harbor #1)
Author: Melissa Foster

CHAPTER ONE

THIS FREAKING HILL is going to kill me!

Abby winced against the sliver of guilt slicing through her for joking about death and pushed herself to run up the steep residential sidewalk toward the main drag on Silver Island. She was not a runner by any stretch of the imagination, but from time to time she needed to escape the monotony and stress of working as a cook in a busy New York restaurant. When that happened, she became one. Or maybe jogger was a better word for her sluggish pace. It was easier to run on her treadmill at home in New York, in the comfort of her apartment, where she could watch television or read. She’d forgotten how hilly her hometown was. But she’d spent half the night arguing with her older sister, Deirdra, and she needed to work out her frustrations.

Deirdra had kept Abby up, badgering her to accept an offer they’d received from an investor to purchase the Bistro, their family’s beachfront restaurant. But their mother’s unexpected death three months ago had caused Abby to take a long, hard look at her life, which was nothing to write home about. She’d felt stuck in her job and in the quasi relationship she’d let go on for far too long. So she’d stepped out of her comfort zone and had thrown caution to the wind, quitting her job and ending the relationship, and she’d come out the other side feeling better than she had in years, despite having no plan for her future in place. Abby was still trying to figure out how to tell Deirdra she’d quit her job, because she knew her sister would give her a hard time about being irresponsible. But Abby saw her decision as an act of self-care—and probably the most responsible decision she’d made in ages. It wasn’t like she was broke and had given up her apartment. She had a nest egg that would cover her rent for a while.

She wasn’t quite sure what her plans were, but she definitely wasn’t ready to sell the Bistro. In a few hours they were meeting with their mother’s closest friend, Shelley Steele, who was the executor of her will. Shelley had been like a second mother to Abby and Deirdra when they were young, and she’d graciously allowed them time to wrap their heads around their mother’s death before dealing with her final wishes.

When Abby reached Main Street, the flat terrain felt like heaven. She slowed to a walk, peering through the windows of the shops as she passed. It was the end of April, not yet tourist season, and the streets were quiet, the sidewalks empty. She had always loved the island’s quaint small towns, with their inviting wooden benches and flower boxes, which were starting to bloom. Her family’s Sunday-evening strolls down Main Street were some of her fondest memories. Her parents would hold hands as their father captivated them all with his thick French accent, telling stories about when he’d first come to the island and bought the Bistro and how much both had changed. Abby had been the epitome of a daddy’s girl. She’d adored his sense of humor and kindheartedness and had wanted to be just like him. Back then, her mother had been full of life, and her parents had been so in love, it had emanated from them and had felt indestructible. Unfortunately, after their father died from a heart attack, their mother had found solace in alcohol, forcing nine-year-old Abby and eleven-year-old Deirdra to grow up far too fast.

Sadness pressed in on Abby, and she picked up her pace, jogging the rest of the way through town and along the winding roads toward Silver Harbor. The expansive patios and the pool at the Silver House, which stood sentinel on a bluff overlooking the harbor, came into view. She looked past the mansion-turned-sought-after-resort to the sunlight glittering off the inky water, the waves kissing the shores of Sunset Beach, and her worries fell away. Boats were tethered to the marina, and more were anchored in the harbor like rebellious teenagers refusing to come home. While she’d eventually left the island to start her life, growing up here, she’d always felt like a marina boat, following the rules and making the best of it, sticking around the island long after Deirdra had gotten scholarships and left to make her mark on the world.

Feeling the pull of the Bistro, she pushed herself to run the few extra blocks to take a quick peek before heading back to her mother’s house. Unlike the Silver House, the Bistro, a renovated boathouse, was built on the flat terrain of the sandy beach. The back faced the parking lot, and the front overlooked the water.

Abby’s breath caught at the sight of THE BISTRO sign perched tall and proud on steel legs attached to the double-peaked roof. The sign had been there since her father had first opened the restaurant several years before she was born.

Surrounded by the scents of the sea and memories of her parents’ laughter, which had once seemed ever present, she made her way to the side patio, taking in the shuttered windows and the CLOSED FOR THE SEASON sign hanging on the weather-beaten siding. She could still recall images of her father with perfect clarity, his long white hair tied back in a ponytail, his matching beard unkempt, and his gray-blue eyes dancing with happiness as he wandered through the restaurant, joining guests at their tables for brief chats. Memories of her mother always took her back to her youth, when Ava de Messiéres’s sandy hair was shiny and beautiful and a gap-toothed smile was always at the ready.

Her eyes shifted to the beach in front of the restaurant, where she and Deirdra used to play. The rickety, weathered gray fence that had once held colorful lanterns had been consumed by bearberry bushes as untamed as her hair. Memories of better days floated around her as she stepped off the side of the patio and onto the sand. Even in her sneakers, she loved the feel of sinking into the sand. She rounded the front of the building and was surprised to see a man sitting at a table reading a newspaper in the shade of the covered patio. It reminded her of her father, who used to read every page while he drank his coffee in the morning. But who reads actual newspapers anymore? And where did you get that table and chair? A travel mug from the Sweet Barista, her friend Keira Silver’s coffeehouse around the corner, sat on the table beside a book and a delicious-looking croissant. He’d made himself right at home, in his crisp short-sleeve button-down shirt, which revealed enticingly defined but not overly muscled arms, khaki pants, and loafers. Loafers? On the beach? A gold watch clung to his wrist, another anomaly. His toffee-brown hair was brushed back, giving her an extraordinary view of his clean-shaven, handsome face as she stepped closer. His chiseled jawline and aquiline nose were a little too familiar, though she couldn’t place where she’d seen him. He looked a lot like a distinguished David Beckham—Yum—but he wasn’t tattooed. Was that why he looked familiar?

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