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    From the Ashes – Part Six (Finale)

    “Gotcha loud and clear, Porter,” Joyce said over the radio. “Decker?”

    “Right here L-T, feeling like I gotta lose a few pounds.” Eric rolled his shoulders to release the pinch of Antonio’s snug-fitting shirt and jacket.

    Bette forced a chuckle to ease her tension. It didn’t work.

    “Kennard?” Joyce said.

    “Loud and clear.”

    “We’re taking up position. Good luck.” Joyce and Prichard parked just off the main road while Bette continued down the paved access road to Three Owls Vineyard.

    The digital clock on Bette’s dashboard said they had about eight minutes before the deadline. What would the minutes following that bring? Like the last time Bette and Tina were here, would things turn out for the best? Her stomach knotted at the alternative.

    Bette gulped when the remains of the main house came into view. In its place stood three brick fireplaces and chimneys, mangled household appliances, and a scattering of cinderblock foundation among a field of scorched, tangled debris.

    The two SUVs in front the night of the fire had since been removed and outlines where they ignited remained on the asphalt. She pulled up just short of that spot, the place where she and Tina had left the two guards tied up for their certain deaths. No doubt those men would’ve slaughtered them if given a chance, but she left them helpless, and that left an irrevocable bitterness in Bette’s mouth.

    She threw the car into park, then gripped the steering wheel tight, twisting her fingers around the leather wrap. What came next troubled her. In the pool, she sensed she’d come closest to death. Her parents’ car and the exploding drug lab were brief brushes with her mortality, but there in the water, she had hours to consider her demise. Only Tina got her through it. Now, Tina was by her side again.

    “I’m glad you’re with me,” Bette said gazing into Tina’s eyes.

    “Me too.” Tina scrunched her nose in a faint grin. “Let’s go get our family back.”

    “Game time, fellas.” Bette stared in the rearview and Eric and Quintrell both acknowledged her with a nod. “Hey Tina, open the glove compartment and grab the flashlight.”

    Tina fished out the metal mini-Maglite.

    Bette and Tina each opened their doors and slid out the sedan. The stale odor of weeks-old burned waste laid heavy in every direction, reminding Bette of the hours she spent in the pool.


    1. Dear Readers,

      It’s been a wonderful journey bringing you Out of the Flames and From the Ashes. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it as much as I’ve enjoyed writing these rollercoaster stories. To every reader, thank you for trusting me to bring you into my world of fiction. To every reader who left a comment and sent a personal message, from the bottom of my heart, I am forever grateful. All of this wouldn’t have happened without your encouragement. I may not return as a writer for a while, but rest assured, I’ll pop by as a reader to catch up with my favorite TiBette writers. So, all you fan fiction authors, keep writing. You never know what opportunity might come knocking.


    2. It’s a mystery, but Bibi28’s comment wouldn’t save. Here you go, Bibi. Thank you so much for reading. I’ve enjoyed each of your comments along the way. – CN


      My comment will not be saved when i posted it. So i hope that you recieve it this way:

      Hey CN,

      I couldn’t believe and still am in shock that this was the last chapter!

      Both stories were a joy to read, ok joy, sometimes it was so heartbreaking that it made me almost cry. And it makes me very sad that Eric and Bette are no longer friends anymore, but when trust is broken it is hard to get it back.

      I am happy that Bette finally adopted Reagan, that she is so incredible happy with Tina and that she has a family she loves and love her equaly back.

      But i hoped to read more about the adoption struggle with the Santos, how Kadin and Bette handled them. It was a part of this story and left me a little unsatisfied.

      But i am so happy and thankful that you decided to share your unique talent with us. I will look forward to the other stories i hope you will write in the future.

      Maybe you will write a epiloge, i wouldn’t mind!!!

      For now, enjoy reading the other Tibette stories on this fantastic site!!!

      Thank you again CN!

    3. Hi CN,

      So happy to see and read your latest post. It was well worth the wait and as usual you took me through all the varying emotions.

      I must, however, say that this cannot be the Finale!You cannot leave us with things the way they are between Eric and Bette nor without more detail on the lead up to the Adoption.

      Additionally the Statement “Move in with me” needs at least an Epilogue!

      So, thank you for sharing your wonderful talent again, sad that you say it will be some time before we read you again – I am a Sassy GreatGran now you know so don’t keep an old lady waiting too long my days may be numbered!


      • Sassy GreatGran, “Move in with me” isn’t the end of the story for these characters. The third installment will pick up where Ashes left off, including the tenuous relationship with Eric. It’s just that I have other pressing matters to tend to for several months which hopefully will end in fantastic news. Guaranteed, one way or another, the third book will find the light of day. You’re a gem, SG. Thanks so much for taking the journey with me.

        • Dear CN,
          Happy to take the journey with you.

          I send you my best thoughts for your dealings over the next months and look forward to the results.

          I look forward to good news in the future and thank you for the wonderful journeys you have taken us on. I may have to get my CN fix by re-reading :-)

          Good Luck in all you do

    4. Hi CN:

      An excellent end, I liked very much this story.

      I had to read it in three parts, interrupted twice by extreme alerts of ‘tornado warning’ here in Texas (looking for shelter), fortunately, everything went well.

      Great story CN, but I may be confused or perhaps I misunderstood you, but I could swear I read that you wrote someplace that it was going to be a third part in this series. Am I delusional or imaging things or is going to be a third part?

      Anyway, I hope you could write more about this story.

      Good work CN, thanks for the story.


      • proteonomics, Glad you’re safe! Spent several years in the Midwest and those tornado sirens followed by the long wait for the danger to pass can be unnerving. You aren’t mistaken about a third book. The working title is Beyond the Smoke. It’s outlined and partially drafted, but I have to put it on the back burner for several months, maybe more. I hope to complete it by year’s end. (PM me if you want further explanation.) Thank you so much for joining me on this journey and lending thoughtful words of encouragement. I cherished each one.

    5. CellaNox this was an amazing journey and so we’ll written. I just wish Bette could have had a happy ending without losing one more important person in her life. I’m sure you had your reasons for that, but I think Eric dying without the confession meaning he wasn’t responsible would have been kinder. Thanks for a great read. Looking forward to part 3 when ever you decide to unveil it. All the best.

      • Bat2012, This has been an incredible journey. And yes, I have my reasons for having Eric reveal and survive. Book three depends on it. I so look forward to you continuing your story Daddy and Love … The bridge between our differences. I’ve read just about everything you’ve posted here, and yours among about a hundred others inspired me to turn from reader to writer. So, don’t stop writing, Bat2012. You never know who you might inspire.

    6. Ok, I ready. So, like others I hope that maybe someday, when you ready, you will give us another great story, or maybe third part of this. About this part – my favorite male character is alive – it’s good, but I still don’t like Kadin interest in Tina. About Eric case – I don’t really know what Bette should do, maybe she’s right cutting all ties with him. And of course – where is answer on last question about moving in between Tibette?

      • Zhenya, Sounds like you enjoyed the finale. All your favorite and not so favorite characters will return in book three, and which will hopefully answer all your lingering questions. I’m still not sure when I’ll have it polished, but I’m hoping by the end of the year. Thanks so much for reading, it means the world.

    7. Thanks for sharing this story with us, CN. It was quite the unexpected ending. You had me on an emotional rollercoaster while reading.

      I’m happy that the families are reunited again and everyone is safe and sound. Well, almost anyway. I have a feeling that the story of Bette and Eric isn’t finished yet.

      Looking forward to a third part sometime this year :-)


      • kiwipit, You’re right, Bette and Eric aren’t finished yet, but the real question is whether that’s a good or bad thing. So glad you enjoyed the story and I’m so thankful for your loyal readership.

    8. Hi Cella.

      I have been reading your stories from the beginning, starting from your Delayed series and til now. And some ive read repeatedly because of the way you wrote them. Im looking forward of the continuation of this story in the future and pray for all the successes in your future plans. Good luck.

      • AReader, Wow! Thanks for the repeat business! That quite the compliment. So glad you enjoy my storytelling. Thanks so much for dropping a comment. It’s much appreciated.

    9. Loved the ending, I was about to comment with roughly what SassyGran said. It is good to know that we will have a continuation to give us more insight into what happened that fateful day. Also what happened with the Santose family. I hope it was something justly deserved. I’ll be here waiting when you are ready to give us more, thanks for the great ride.

      • OneStorm1, So glad you came along for the ride. It’s so much better with friends. I hope to get the third installment out soon. Thanks so much for reading and for the kind words. It means the world to me.

    10. Thank for this exciting story, I am hoping you intend for Bette to work on forgiving and trusting Eric again.
      I love the way you write with such detail, especially the paragraph in which you describe the Serenity Garden, I could visualize it so well I felt like I was there to see it myself.
      Lastly, HOW DARE YOU compare Barry Manilow and water boarding to be at the same level. I hope every time you get into an elevator a Barry Manilow song will be playing.
      Don’t mess with a Fanilow.

      Looking forward to your next post hopefully before the end of the year and good luck with your future project.

      • bubcris1, Thanks so much for the kind words, especially about the serenity garden. A little secret. Everyone of my settings I’ve either been to and recall from memory, or I find a picture on the Internet for inspiration. So, that garden exists and has helped many troubled loved ones find peace of mind. Regarding Barry, it all comes from a place of love, my friend. However, any future digs about The Carpenters, not so much. :-)

    11. Had to digest everything I read over the last few days before I could comment on this last chapter. I guess the time didn’t heal the wound because I’m pretty mad at you for throwing such an unexpected wrench in the Eric-Bette relationship. I’m wracking my brain trying to remember if you were dropping breadcrumbs to this revelation, but they were vague and ambiguous at best.

      Needless to say, I’m not happy with this turn of events at all. That’s only a compliment to you as your uncanny ability to draw me into your well-rounded characters is to blame for this emotional reaction. And now that I have to wait to find out the fate of that relationship until you find your success in actual publication just really pisses me off. LOL.

      In any event, I’m glad one end of the epic tale was wrapped up nicely and that Reagan and Chandler’s bonding will help forge the budding relationship between Bette and Tina.

      Best of luck in your writing adventures for the masses beyond the confines of this fanfiction community. Looking forward to what you get yourself into, professionally speaking. And I’ll be waiting here in SD when you’re ready to cash-in on that cocktail.


      • MeLL,

        The breadcrumbs were vague, perhaps a little too well-hidden. I might consider a few extra in future edits.

        I’m so glad to find out how much you enjoy my characters. I continue to doubt whether I’ve done enough to entice a reader to fall in love with the good ones and hate the bad ones. This tells me I’m hitting the mark.

        My next writing adventure still has a big question mark by it, but I’m inching closer. Drop me a line and we can work something out with the third installment.

        Hope to hit your fair city this summer. Cheers!

    12. What a journey !
      Your work has always amazed me but the 2 last installments were perfect, you improved yourself very much.
      It will be hard waiting for your stories, I wish you luck with your next project but please don’t forget about us.

      • izzie, First, thank you to joining me on the ride. Creating a world of fiction may be a lot of work but it’s also so much fun. This site is a magical place. The hundreds of stories here sparked an interest in reading I’d long abandoned. and dared me to think I could write one myself. I never thought this “hobby on a whim” would turn into my passion, but it has. The more I do it, the better I get, and the better I get, the more I love it. I’ll never forget this wonderful place. Here is where my love for reading re-sparked and here is where my love for writing was born. Your loyal readership and kind words keep me pumped up for the next story and the next. Thanks again. Hope to be back soon.

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