Tuesday, April 26, 2011

I'm back?

I was cleaning out my bookmarks and realized that I really do miss writing this stuff. I want to start a new story, but first I wanted to check if there is still interest. I need some help from you all, too. If I do start writing again, who would you like to see as the focus? (It will probably be a Penguins player, simply because I'm most familiar with that team and city.) Would you guys want to read another Sid story? I am also toying with the idea of rewriting Such Great Heights--some of the sections and story lines are messy. I know I didn't end this story in a very good way--I was really busy with school and couldn't commit to updating regularly. I decided to write a quick ending rather than leave you all hanging.

If I do decide to start another story with other main characters, I might recycle some plot points. What do you all think of that? Would you prefer to see a new and improved version of Such Great Heights, or a completely different story with a new main character (basically I'm asking if y'all are sick of Karine yet)?

I would really appreciate any feedback! You can email me at summer.obrien89@yahoo.com, or leave a comment on this post. I'll be checking back regularly to see what you all have to say.

Sunday, June 13, 2010


As you can tell from the title of this post, this will be the final installment of "Such Great Heights." I really loved writing this story, and hearing back from all of you guys. It's been so much fun and I hate ending this, but I don't have enough time to devote to writing quality posts on a regular basis. In addition, I've kind of lost inspiration for these characters. I would really like to start another Sidney story, and if I do I'll be sure to say something here. I want to thank all my readers for your support. I'm still amazed by how many people read and appreciate this blog. You guys are the best. -Summer

I shot Sylvie a terrified look. “The veil,” I whispered in a terrified voice. “Where the FUCK is my veil?!”

“Calm down, it’s around here somewhere,” she replied, her voice equally terrified. She started tearing apart the suite, looking under cushions for my missing bridal veil. “Where did you see it last?”

“I have no idea!” I moaned. I collapsed onto a wing chair and tossed my head back. “This is a disaster. I shouldn’t even be doing this.”

“Oh, come ON.” Sylvie stood with her hands on her hips. “You are not getting cold feet now.”

I smiled. Of course I wasn’t getting cold feet. There was nothing that marriage could throw at me and Sid that we couldn’t handle. Our relationship had been a long-fought war, and neither of us was willing to surrender. Trying to stay together while I was in Montreal and he was in Pittsburgh was extremely difficult, and eventually I decided to find a job in Pittsburgh and moved back. I had my own apartment in Highland Park, and Sid and I had just moved in together last week, despite us being engaged for a year. We were still taking baby steps three years after we made that promise to each other in the locker room.

“Found it!” Sylvie cried triumphantly from behind the sofa. She jumped to her feet and gently placed the veil on my head. “Just in time, too,” she added with a smile as we heard the string quartet begin to play.

My father walked me down the aisle, to where Sidney was waiting for me with a huge grin on his face. The ceremony was a blur. I felt like everything was a dream and I didn’t wake up until the priest pronounced us husband and wife.

The years flew madly by. Five years after our marriage, I gave birth to our first son, Andrew Patrick. Less than a year later, we were surprised by another pregnancy. Another boy, this one named Jason Daniel. They were undeniably Sidney’s. Dark hair, dark eyes, and completely obsessed with hockey. They both went on to play professionally, but Andy decided to retire early and became the GM for the San Jose Sharks. Jason played until he literally couldn’t any more. He was a true threat on the ice—not as skilled as Sid, but physical and fast.

After dealing with raising the two boys, Sid and I thought we were done with children until we were yet again surprised. This time, by a baby girl, eight years younger than Jason and a spitting image of her mother. Adrienne Marie played hockey throughout high school, but opted out of an athletic scholarship to study journalism at one of the best schools in the country.

Sid won four more cups and retired a Penguin at the age of thirty-seven. He was approached by several teams with coaching offers but ultimately opted to stay in Pittsburgh. He took a management position with the Penguins and worked there for many years.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


Okay, so it took a little longer than a week, but here you go...

I stood outside the locker room door, wringing my hands and feeling extremely awkward. Slowly, one by one, the men began to file out of the locker room. The ones who knew me either sent me a short nod or an angry glare. I exhaled deeply and closed my eyes. I just wanted to go home, crawl into bed and never get out.

I waited for a few minutes after the last player exited before pushing the door open. Sid was sitting on the bench in front of his locker, staring down at his hands. I took a seat beside him.

"So," he said without looking up. I nodded, but couldn't speak. Tears began to sting my eyes. "Are you okay?" he asked.

"I'm fine."

"Bullshit." I couldn't help but smile at the way he was smirking at me.

"You still know me too well."

"I remember everything." We sat in silence for endless seconds as we both remembered...everything.

"Who was the girl?" I blurted out. My voice was barely above a whisper. Part of me needed to ask the question. The other part was afraid of the answer.

"What girl?"

"I stopped by your house to find you. There was a girl upstairs."

He groaned. "She's still there?"

"Umm..." I was shocked. Anger and jealousy overtook me. I knew it was irrational, but I was so upset that he had taken a girl home the same night that I tossed and turned, didn't sleep at all, because I was so excited and nervous to come see him.

Sid sighed. "We went out last night...it just kind of happened."

"Classy," I snapped. I stood up and started to walk toward the door. "You're disgusting. I used to have so much respect for you."

"Oh, I'm sorry. I guess I didn't understand the rules. So you're allowed to completely overreact and run away without a word, act like I don't exist anymore, get fucking ENGAGED, but I was supposed to sit here like a good boy and wait for you."

"This was a mistake." My voice was shaking. I just wanted things to be different. I wanted to go back in time and start over.

Sid stood and walked toward me. "Karine, why are you here?"

My tears were falling freely now. I gave up trying to hold it all back. "Because I still love you, you idiot. You're all I can think about. For the past two years, you've been all I could think about. My heart hurts, Sid. It literally hurts. I want to go back in time and meet you for the first time again and change everything. I want to do it right, because God, Sid, I was so happy with you. I thought Thomas could fix my heart, but he just wasn't you. That's why it didn't work. That's why nothing else is going to work for me until we get closure. Because no one else is you."

He was quiet for a few seconds. "I still love you, too," he replied quietly. He placed his hand on my arm and steered me to the bench.

"Then why is this so hard?" I was close to completely breaking down.

"Maybe...maybe it just isn't supposed to happen." He couldn't make eye contact as he delievered that deathblow. I felt like he had punched me in the stomach.

"I think that's the opposite of our problem. I think it was always supposed to happen. I think we're soulmates. I just think our timing was wrong. But we're older now...we know what won't work, so maybe we can try what will work."

He nodded slowly and wrapped his hand around mine. "So what do we do?"

"Build a time machine and start this over."

"I won't have time to research theoretical physics until after the playoffs."

I laughed through the tears. "So...is this hopeless?"

"I want to say no..."


Sid exhaled loudly. "But."

We sat in silence, holding hands, a million possible scenarios running through my head. I could move back to Pittsburgh...we could run away, change our names, start new lives.

"I just want to be with you. I don't care how hard I have to work to make that happen," I said. Sid stared into my eyes.

"That's all I want, too."

"Then let's stop hurting each other. Let's do this."


"We have to take it slow this time. I'll stay in Montreal. I can't leave my job to move back here, especially when you're gone for half the season anyway. We'll have to deal with doing this long distance for a while, but if we can make it through that, then when the season's over maybe we could figure something out."

Sid nodded. "Baby steps."

"If we're meant to be together, we can do this. We just have to start fresh and do it right."

"We deserve a second chance."

I squeezed his hand. "This isn't going to be easy. But if it doesn't work, we can walk away knowing we gave it a fair chance."

Sid shook his head and smiled. "We are either absolutely perfect or absolutely terrible for each other."

I smiled back at him. "Let's strive for perfection."


I stayed in Pittsburgh for a few more days. The Pens had a three-game home stint, so I joined Mario in his box and cheered on my boy. When he had free time, we went on dates or cuddled on his couch. I felt like I was in high school again. I was giddy, butterflies had taken permenant residence in my stomach, and I was completely happy.

Going back to Montreal killed me. Sid took me to the airport and practically had to push me onto the plane.

"I want to stay here." I buried my head into his chest and cried.

"Hey, it's okay. Baby steps, remember? I'm only a phone call away." He placed his hand under my chin, raised my head and kissed me. "We'll see each other soon."

I smiled weakly and hugged him. "This is going to be so hard."

"It will be worth it. I promise."

I boarded the plane and put on a brave face. As I left the city of Pittsburgh, I felt nervous and excited, but most of all, hopeful. I had no idea what my future held, but it was going to be an adventure.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

You guys make me feel guilty...

Life gets kind of out of control sometimes. Post coming this week. Pinky promise.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


"You are absolutely, certifiably insane." Sylvie gave me a tight hug before I boarded my plane. "I love it. Go get him."

I gave her a kiss on the cheek and made my way through security. Anxiety gripped my stomach. "Please, let this be the right decision," I whispered to myself, praying to whatever higher power had my back today.

As I flew over snowy, beautiful Canada, I remembered the first time Sid and I met. I had just arrived in Pittsburgh and was unpacking my clothes in the temporary home Mario had graciously offered, when I turned and saw him standing in the doorway. His smile, his eyes…I knew I would fall in love with him at that moment.

My heart began to ache. He had changed a lot in the two-plus years since we had met. He looked older, somehow less bright…he looked sad. He was exhausted, and only 23 years old. I rested my forehead against the window and thought about our downfall. We had moved too fast. We were young, but we were in love. We thought we had it all. Unfortunately, our first challenge proved to be our last one. I was stressed out from being unemployed, and he lived with the illusion that everything was perfect.

I questioned my decision to arrive in Pittsburgh, uninvited and unannounced, for the millionth time. But Sid and I needed to talk and get everything out in the open. Even if we decided we couldn't be together, at least we could both move on and have healthy relationships with other people. I couldn't live my life wondering what may have happened.

This was my last chance to prove to myself that I could be happy, with or without him.

My plane finally landed in Pittsburgh and I rented a car. "What now?" I breathed as I pulled out of the parking lot. I hadn't planned any of this out. I assumed Sid was in town because there was a home game tomorrow, but I didn't know where he would be. He didn't know I was here. Panic surged through my body. He hates me. He has to hate me. Why am I doing this? What did I possibly have to say to him? I have no idea what I want from him.

I shook all the negative thoughts out of my head. It was too late to second guess my decision. I was in Pittsburgh, and Sidney was going to see me whether he wanted to or not.

I drove to his house, hoping he still lived there. I didn't see his car in the driveway, but I went to the front door and knocked a few times anyway. I peeked in through the glass door and saw familiar furniture. He still lived here.

I was about to walk back to the car when I saw a movement in the bedroom window upstairs. Someone had pulled up the blind. A female someone. A very attractive female someone. We stared at each other for a few seconds before she lowered the blind again.

I stood, frozen to the spot, for at least three minutes. I tried to come up with logical explanations for a woman in Sidney's bedroom that didn't involve him sleeping with her—maybe she was a cleaning lady? Maybe that was Taylor…I hadn't seen her in a while, she had probably grown up. Maybe it was a cousin, or a friend, or…Or maybe, after two years of hell, Sid had finally moved on.

My heart sank as I drove away. Part of me wanted to march into the house and confront her, but she hadn't done anything wrong. She probably had no idea who I was. She was lucky enough to have Sid…I couldn't freak out on her for that. But God, I wanted to.

I pulled over on the side of the highway and started to cry. I wanted to go home. He had someone else…he was over me. There was nothing left to say to him. There was nothing left to salvage. It was over.

No. I sat up straight, squared my shoulders, and gripped the steering wheel so hard my knuckled turned white. No. I was not going to let this happen. I wasn't going to leave without seeing him. If he wanted me out of his life, I was fine with that. But he would have to tell me.

I drove to the arena. If he wasn't there, I could find someone to tell me where he was. Luckily, the guys were in the middle of practice. I found Uncle Mario watching practice in the south goal area, so I decided to join him. He gave me a half-amused look and shook his head.

"Should I even ask?"

I shrugged and smiled. "I have some business to take care of."

He smiled and nodded in Sid's direction. "Business with the captain?"

"Who else?"

The team started to do shooting drills in the opposite net. Sid scored, skated around the back of the net, and we made eye contact. He slowly slid to a stop at center ice and just stared at me. Realizing something was wrong, all the other guys turned to look at me. All but a few realized who I was. Jordan skated over and said something to Sid. Sid shook his head.

"This is awkward," I muttered to Mario.

"What did you expect?" he replied.

Sid slowly skated to our end of the ice and slid to a stop directly in front of me. "You're here," he said, his tone betraying no emotion.

I stared at my hands, unable to look into his eyes. I couldn't tell if he was upset and it killed me. "Yeah," I replied quietly.

Sid looked over his shoulder at the rest of the team, who had reluctantly started shooting drills again. "Meet me in the locker room after we're done." He skated away, leaving me breathless and shaking.