The sun had already set, and the lights of the small town were twinkling in the distance. Cara sat in her car, staring at the night sky, she was confused as to why she was there after years of being away. However, this was the only place that she felt like she could be, after a whirlwind of a divorce, it was time to come home. When she stepped out of the car and made her way towards her childhood house, everything looked the same, but something was different.
As she was getting her key out of her pocket, she heard a voice in the dark. "Cara?" said the voice. Even in the dark, she knew whose voice it was. Mark. She was nervous and it was then she saw him slowly walking towards her, hands in his pockets and a shy smile on his face.
For a moment, they just stood there looking at each other, taking in the years that had passed. They had gone to high school together, and Mark had been Cara's first love. Cara was an introvert and Mark was the star quarterback of their high school football team. He was the most popular boy in the school, and yet, he had always been drawn to Cara's quiet charm.
After a moment of silence, Mark said the words that Cara had been dreading, he had a girlfriend. However, seeing Cara stirred something in him that he thought had long been dormant. As they chatted a few minutes longer, there was clearly something magical in the air. Once they said their goodbyes, Cara couldn't shake the feeling of being in the right place as she made her way to her childhood bedroom, she knew she was home.
The next day, Cara made her way downtown to her favorite coffee shop – Cafe Nova. She was immediately greeted by the elderly owner, who had been a dear friend to her over the years. As she sipped on her coffee, looking at a newspaper, she couldn't help but overhear two middle-aged women gossiping about Mark's relationship with his current girlfriend, Emily. It was clear to Cara that Mark's relationship with Emily was not as steady as everyone thought.
Days went by, and Cara started frequenting the vineyard where Mark and Emily worked. Every time Cara would show up, Emily would be nowhere in sight, and before too long, Cara and Mark started to talk more and more about their past. They talked about their memories of high school, and the dreams they had for the future.
Cara couldn't help but think about the spark they shared during their conversation over the years. She knew that Mark felt it too as his eyes would light up, and he would speak with such a passion that it was clear he was drawn to her. As time went on, they frequently bumped into each other in town, at the grocery store, and even at the local bowling alley.
One day, Mark asked Cara to join him on a picnic. He took her to the most picturesque spot, and with the vineyard in the distance, they settled on a blanket to share a bottle of wine. They talked about everything and anything, and didn't even realize that the sun had set, and the stars had appeared.
In that moment, everything felt perfect, there was something so right about being with Mark, it was like she was finally home. Mark touched her hand and looked into her eyes, "Cara, you know I still have feelings for you, right?" he said. Cara was stunned, she had known for weeks, but the confirmation made her heart feel so full. "And I still have feelings for you, but what about Emily?" she said uncertainly. "Honestly, I am not sure about us, Emily and I, we just don't have what we used to. And, I don't want to make the same mistake again and miss a second chance with you," replied Mark.
One evening, Cara was standing in the vineyard when she overheard Mark's parents talking. It was clear that Mark's mother didn't approve of Cara and urged Mark to "make the right choice." The words sent Cara into a tailspin, how could she destroy the good dynamics he had with his family? She knew that they needed to talk about this before anything serious could happen.
The following day, Cara went over to Mark's house to confront him about his mother's conversation. Mark explained that his mother had always been protective of him and that he had his own life to lead. He also told Cara about how passionate he had always felt about her, and how he had never been able to forget her. Before too long, Mark and Cara were kissing, and it was like no time had passed at all.
For the next few days, Cara was on cloud nine, her and Mark were officially together and she knew from the bottom of her heart that this was the real deal. But reality hit when Cara was packing up and getting ready to move back to the big city and start over. Mark and Cara knew that this was an unlikely relationship but they wanted to try.
After her bags were packed, Cara stopped at Cafe Nova to say goodbye to the elderly owner. She shared the news of her new relationship, and how happy she was. The owner listened intently and gave her advice about the importance of following her heart.
As Cara was leaving, the owner called out to her and said, "You know, Cara, sometimes, the things we want the most are not meant to be. But they are still worth fighting for." Those words sent Cara into deep thought, could she fight for Mark?
As she started her car, she could hear Mark's voice, telling her not to leave, that he wanted her to stay and build a future together. She knew the decision she had to make was a difficult one, but her heart had made up its mind. As she drove away from her hometown and headed back to the city, she was happy, sad, and unsure. But she was at peace knowing that she had followed her heart, and fighting for her true love, was a cause worth the fight.