Golden Chance

AuthorFletcher Stanton

Rating:  PG

Summary:  My explanation as to why Lee told Amanda he loved her when he did.

Disclaimer:  I do not own any of the S&MK universe.  "If I Loved You", From Carousel, is by Rodgers & Hammerstein, so I don't own it either.  I am writing for entertainment purposes only Ė I donít make any money from this.  Any copyright infringement is unintentional.

Feedback:  of course!

Timeline:  During Stemwinder (Part One)

Author's Note:  Thanks to a certain someone for making sure I got to see Stemwinder!

Lee Stetson glanced nervously down the aisle, trying to look like a normal person doing a bit of shopping, rather than the hunted man he was.  He still had a few minutes before calling T.P. and Amanda, so he'd ducked into the gourmet grocery, figuring it would be less conspicuous than standing outside by the pay phone.

As he did his best to take in every detail of his surroundings, he noticed that the music playing in the background wasn't the usual Muzak these places had.  Instead, it seemed to be a mix of classical music and Broadway tunes.  Lee recognized the song that was starting to play.  His thoughts turned toward Amanda as he realized that it was a love song.  Listening to the words, he was surprised at just how well they mirrored his relationship with her.  Memories flitted about in his mind, brought forth by the poignant lyrics.

If I loved you, time and again I would try to say
All I'd want you to know

Amanda's implicit trust in Lee gave him the courage to make a real connection with her, something he'd never expected to happen.  He told her things about himself he'd never shared with anyone else.  He'd opened up to her, showed her the man behind the agent.

Their friendship had blossomed over the years - he couldn't remember when it began to change.  When had he started to want more?  When had Amanda become his lifeline?

If I loved you, words wouldn't come in an easy way
Round in circles I'd go

He'd gone around in circles, all right.  Lee had done everything he could to convince Amanda, and himself, that he didn't have feelings for her.

He'd push her away when she got too close.  He'd pretend to keep his distance, only to show up on her doorstep just because he had to see her, even if only for a moment.  He made countless excuses, each one lamer than the last, for his behavior.  He'd even dated a woman who was for all intents and purposes an Amanda clone, in a futile effort to keep some distance from the woman who had, without trying, stolen his heart.

Longing to tell you, but afraid and shy
I'd let my golden chances pass me by

"It was just a cover."  "Just part of the case."  "Just two people seeking a little warmth."

So many times he had come so close, only to back away, fearing her reaction... his reaction.  Worried that he'd lose her friendship, the closeness he'd come to cherish, if he tried to take their relationship any further.  Worried that he'd lose her to someone else if he didn't try.  Afraid she wouldn't feel as he did.  Afraid that she would.  And now they were dating, and he still hadn't been able to tell her how important she was to him.

Soon you'd leave me, off you would go in the mist of day
Never, never to know - how I loved you... if I loved you

He was the one leaving, but the result would be the same - she wouldn't know how he really felt about her.  Lee had no way of knowing when he'd be able to see Amanda again.  He'd been waiting for the right time, the right place, the perfect moment to tell her just how much he did love her.  Now it looked like that moment might never come.

Lee realized that he couldn't just leave like that - he had to tell Amanda how he felt.  Looking at his watch, he saw it was time to make the call.  He hoped he'd have a chance to tell Amanda in person someday, but, for now, the phone would have to do.