As Catherine and Vincent looked around, they saw Michael approach Mary,
who smiled and nodded yes to the young man, and as Mary took his arm,
Michael led her out to the dance floor. And they danced to, "What a Wonderful

Catherine commented on how sweet it was of Michael to ask Mary to dance.
To which Vincent thoughtfully explained to Catherine, that Mary had become
like a second Mother to Michael. Having lost his own Mother at such a very
young age, and Mary loosing her child, well, they gravitated to one another.

Catherine gave Vincent an understanding nod, as he finished telling her their
tale, and then smiled as she now mentioned to Vincent, "Look at Jamie, and
Laura, they both look so pretty tonight! So grown up!"

Yes, the two girls did dress up for the occasion. They were standing on the edge
of the dance floor, like two wallflowers, giggling and pointing at a couple of the
tunnel boys. They looked as if they wanted, to be asked to dance!

And so Catherine playfully chided, "Why don't you go ask one of the girls to
dance Vincent?"

Questioning such a notion, he lamented, "Oh Catherine, how could I possibly
choose? Unless I..."

And so with his last comment dangling, Vincent left Catherine's side.

With great curiosity, Catherine watched Vincent, wondering what he was up to,
and what was his solution to this dilemma.

All of a sudden, Catherine started laughing, as his solution was now quite clear!

Vincent began waltzing about the Great Hall to the tune of "Shall we Dance?"
with both of the girls! The sight of these three, brought a bit of levity to the
party, and they thrilled one, and all.  

As Catherine stood there watching, she noticed Jacob was approaching her.
Turning to him she smiled, and said, "Hello Father, are you enjoying the party?"

Politely he replied, "Oh yes Catherine and yourself?"

To which Catherine nodded toward the dance floor and said, "Oh Father, how
could I not? I had not realized Vincent had a silly side to him. I have never seen
it before!"

Jacob chuckled and revealed to Catherine, "Yes, yes indeed, you are quite right,
the comedic side of him does not erupt very often Catherine. I have seen it very
few times myself, it is only when he is truly happy and content, that he is able
to let his guard down like this."

Jacob then cleared his throat as he continued, "It is clear Catherine,
Catherine...that you have made Vincent very happy, very happy indeed. If
anything should happen between the two of you...I shudder to think what..."

He then stopped himself from saying any more, realizing he was close to
crossing that MEDDLING line!

Catherine looked downward as she searched her heart on how to respond to
Jacob's comment. She had always known Jacob was not comfortable with her
and Vincent's relationship, and so she wanted to let him know, how much
Vincent meant to her.

Nervously, Catherine looked back at Jacob, and said, "Father, before Vincent
entered my life, I lived an existence that seems so shallow to me now. I can see
it clearly now that a part of me was missing..."

With a humble smile, Catherine then continued, "And then when I met Vincent,
the night he saved my life, my whole world turned up side down! Knowing
Vincent has changed me, changed my life, changed my heart. I can not
remember a time when I ever felt as good or as complete as I do when I am
with him. Father, I love him. You above all people should understand why."

Tears had filled Catherine's eyes as she spoke, and this endeared her to Jacob,
and he at that very moment felt his heart change, and an acceptance had finally

Shakily he smiled back at Catherine, seeing her now in a very different light. For
the first time, he understood this woman a little better, and recognized this bond
she shared with his son.

He could see she loved his son purely, and completely, and seemed committed
to their relationship. And he felt an admiration grow, for her courage to love
past, and beyond the prejudices other people may have. Himself included!

And so humbly Jacob confessed,  "I believe I have underestimated your
commitment to my son. Will you except my apology?"

Catherine sweetly replied, "Father, an apology isn't necessary. I just wanted you
to know. To understand..."

Standing together in this Great Hall, as a solemn silence overcame them, after
hearing and accepting each other's words for the first time, a new alliance had
been formed.

Jacob then graciously turned to Catherine and with an extended arm, asked,
"Would you do me the honor of granting me this dance?"

With a deep felt emotion, Catherine answered, "Oh yes Father!"  

As they joined the others on the dance floor, they danced to the tune of, "The
impossible Dream."

As Vincent looked on in disbelief, he suddenly felt his heart soar at the sight of
his Father and Catherine dancing together!

After the music ended, Jacob returned Catherine to Vincent's side, to whom
Catherine told, "Oh Vincent, Father is such a good dancer!"

Smiling, Jacob replied, "Tut Catherine, one is only as good as ones
partner, and I thank you for making me look so good! Oh my, there is Mary! I
must get to her before someone else asks her to dance! Would you both please
excuse me? Oh, and Catherine...thank you again, for the conversation, and for
the dance."

Jacob was then off on a dead run, hobbling to catch Mary!       

To which Vincent quizzically asked, "Conversation Catherine?"

As Catherine felt Vincent's curiosity as to what his Father could have meant, she
looked up at the man she adored, and subtly explained, "We crossed some
bridges tonight Vincent. I told Father some things I knew he needed to hear
from me, I told much you have changed my life, and I told much I loved you."     

Vincent felt stunned Catherine had been so open with his skeptical Father, who
had been making it difficult for them to go forward.

And so cautiously he noted, "Catherine, that had to be arduous for you. You did
that for me?"

Catherine answered solemnly, "I did it for us Vincent and for Father too. I
wanted him to understand my heart hoping it would put him at ease. I know he
loves you and has only concern for your welfare."

Lightening the mood, Catherine then teased, "And Vincent, Father really is a
marvelous dancer!"

Vincent admittedly said, "Yes, and...he has taught me all I know."

With a smile, Catherine taunted, "Seeing is believing."

Taking her hand in his, he sweetly asked, "Then Catherine...may I have this

Catherine delightfully answered, "Yes Vincent, dancing with you, is what I have
been waiting entire life."

As Vincent and Catherine held each other, and danced about the Hall, their
hearts soared, as their dreams and desires were becoming a reality. There was
no denying the love between this special couple, and as they took to the floor,
all eyes were on them. Vincent dressed in his finest attire, and looking so strong
and handsome, to Catherine's delicate beauty! They were a striking couple

Even Jacob watched in awe at this beautiful couple. At last, he felt blessed,
within his own heart, this destined pair, had found each other!

Although, everyone was aware of them, they were not aware of a single soul
except each other! Their first dance they danced to was Eric Clapton's, "The
way you look tonight", then onto Phil Collins,  "You'll be in my Heart", and
then  " Don't know much" by Aaron Neville, and Linda Rondstadt.

The night flew by, and soon it was nearing the end of the party. As Catherine
and Vincent decided to take a rest, she heard the beginning bars to her song that
she had been waiting all night for.

With hope, she turned to Vincent and asked, "One more song Vincent, just one

Elegantly he complied, saying, "Very well Catherine."

Vincent then took Catherine into his arms, and held her closely to him, as they
danced to, "The First Time I loved Forever."

To be continued
Chapter Seven
Sweet Passage!
By Sharon Holtz
Chapter Six