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The Best Present Ever

Guest jdoddy

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Story Title: The Best Present Ever

Type of story: One-shot

Main Characters: Geoff & Nicole - with mentions of other cast.

BTTB rating: G

Genre: Romance

Does story include spoilers: Yes, I think - it mentions upcoming Aus story lines in past tense.. including 'The Belle Taylor one'

Any warnings: None

Summary: It's Nicole's Birthday.. she is upset that nobody seems to remember or care.. until its almost over.

A/N: I am currently writing the next chapter in Special Access – but due to my good mood, and a batch of spoilers I have just read I was inspired to write this.. hope you enjoy it :-)

The Best Present Ever

A Geoff & Nicole One-shot.

Nicole was sitting by the window in the Pier Diner, waiting for Colleen to bring across the strawberry milkshake she had ordered a few moments ago.. she looked out the window and saw a group of teenagers coming towards The Diner from just below – obviously they had spent time in the water as their hair was ruffled and the t-shirts they were wearing were sticking slightly to the light spraying of water which was still resting on their torsos. As they moved closer to the window she was sitting behind she recognised the first guy.. It was Brendan, Xavier's brother – she hadn't really met him before but she could tell he was really excited about something.. Xavier followed behind with Ruby.. 'Hang on' she thought.. as far as she knew Ruby was still in the city with Geoff.. surely he would let her know he was back safely?.. well, it was obvious he hadn't..

Her train of thought was interrupted by the arrival of Colleen, who placed a large glass of cold liquid of a deep pink colour on the table.. just how Nicole liked it - she allowed the liquid to caress her throat as the excitable Brendan entered the Diner.. shouting quite loudly as he crossed the wide room and settled right in the corner.. 'IT'S MY BIRTHDAY!.. ITS MY BIRTHDAY!' - it was then that a wave of emotion hit her.. see, it was her birthday too.. maybe Ruby and Xavier would come over and be the first people to wish her a happy 18th Birthday.. she hadn't expected anything from Kirsty and Miles, because they were busy with Ollie.. and in truth – she hadn't been living with them long enough to really let them get to know her properly.. so much had happened since she started living at Summer Bay House.. what with Trey and Belle and Sid and everything.. the only person who knew of her special day was Roman.. and he was in no position to send a card.. she was sure she had told Aden at some point during the year they had spent living under the same roof – but he was never any good at remembering anything that didn't involve himself or Belle.. she had told Geoff when they were together – but he was obviously too busy with his own life to care about her.. he had shown that when he failed to text her to tell her he was back.. it just confirmed to her that he didn't really care about her at all.

Xavier and Ruby entered just as she finished thinking.. but they didn't stop to say hello even, let alone let her know they had remembered anything special.. she sighed, Colleen – who was clearing down a table just behind the blonde caught the end of Nicole's sigh and moved backwards.. she caught Nicole's eye before speaking.. 'Something troubling you Nicole? - you know you can always talk to me.. I'm not one to go airing people's thoughts.. unlike some', Nicole laughed softly before shaking her head.. 'No Colleen, nothings wrong.. just missing my Dad that's all'.. Colleen replied 'I have to admit, its a bit odd not having him working here anymore' before bustling off to put the plates in the kitchen.

'Who was she kidding?'.. she thought 'something is troubling me, I just don't feel I should have to remind people of my own birthday'... she paused in thought.. 'its something that everyone should know by now'.

She finished what remained of her milkshake before standing up and walking briskly towards the door.. before she left she took one look back at the energetic threesome sitting in the corner before whispering 'Happy Birthday Nic' under her breath and continuing out the door.


Geoff changed gear and gave his gas pedal the lightest of touches.. which sent him forward at a steady pace, he was on his way home.. he had dropped Ruby off at Martha's farm so she could meet Xavier before turning back and driving the short way back to the City.. he was on his way back now and he felt the best he had felt in a long time.. during his spell in The City with Ruby he had made a decision.. he was going to get her back.. he looked to the passenger seat just as he passed the 'Welcome to Summer Bay' sign and smiled as his eyes fell upon the beautifully gift-wrapped box which sat on the seat.. he couldn't think of a better time to ask her.. because today.. today was her Birthday.


It didn't take him long to arrive back home.. he gently kicked open the door to the Beach House.. and smiled as the familiar smell enveloped his senses.. sure, he hadn't been gone long – but that didn't mean he hadn't missed the place.. and of course – its residents.

As he kicked off his shoes a picture of Belle caught his eye.. he had run away from the task she had bestowed on him – but now he was ready.. and if he reconciled with her he was sure he could complete that task perfectly. With that warming thought at the forefront of his mind he went off to pick out his best shirt.. and have a shower.. even he wouldn't deny that the long car journey hadn't been kind to his body.. and frankly.. he smelt a bit.


The Sun was sinking slowly behind the waterline as she walked along the coastal path.. she watched it sadly.. 'Oh well' she whispered 'There is always next year..' - as she turned.. with the intention of returning to Summer Bay House her mobile phone vibrated.. she pulled it out and moaned as she saw the word 'Geoff – [1 New Message] ' flashing on the screen.. 'oh – so your alive then?' she thought as she opened the message.. she read:

Hey Nic – back from The City..

I've got something for you if you'd like to come around.

See you in Five?

G x

Although she wanted to be angry with him she couldn't stop the excitement building.. she had something for her.. 'Maybe all is not lost!' she announced loudly and dramatically to the empty beach below before starting on a brisk walk towards the Beach House..

When she arrived the house he was waiting for her.. perched slightly on one of the kitchen tops in what looked like a brand new shirt.. 'Hey' he said softly as she hopped up on the ajecent top.. 'Hey' she replied.. she found it surprisingly hard to keep the tone of excitement from her voice, but she tried none the less.

He hopped down from his position with his hands hidden behind his back.. she let a small gasp escape her lips as he moved towards her.. she cursed to herself.. wishing she could reach out and take it back.. he presented her with the perfect purple package.. she took it from his hands.. took a moment to examine it.. she noticed a card sitting attached to the bow which rested atop it.. but she ignored that as she began to carefully unwrap the present.. inside was a photograph.. in the most ornate silver frame she had ever seen..it contained a picture of them both at the school formal.. and it was bordered with little pictures.. the ones out of the machine in the city.. you know for passports and stuff.. they had been taken when he took her shopping for her dress just before the magical night of the first picture. 'is that it?' she thought, before mentally scorning herself again.. 'he was the only one who remembered'.. 'and it was amazing'.. she felt him looking at her and met his eyes.. he whispered.. 'Turn it over' – as she did, a glint of silver caught her eye.. it wasn't long before those very eyes had realised what she was looking at.. it was a fragile silver pendant in the shape of a key.. it hung on a silver chain she gasped.. he took his hands and removed the jewellry from the back of the frame and placed it around her neck.. she smiled as she felt him fasten the clasp behind her head.. he brought his mouth around to level with her ear and whispered.. 'its the key to my heart'.

In that moment she swooned.. 'how did he know' she thought.. he placed his hands on each side of her face.. cupping it.. before moving forwards to place the gentlest of kisses on her smooth lips.. they lost themselves in the embrace.. both hearts connected again after such a long and uncomfortable time apart.. she went weak and almost dropped the frame.. before he reached down and placed it next to her.

She had been given the best present ever.. she had him back.

That's right, she thought

He was the best present ever.. and much to her surprise.. this had just become her best birthday ever.


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