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"Dave," the maître d' announced in an authoritative voice, "Mr. Shipley would like to borrow your instrument for a few minutes."

"Of course," the young man hurriedly turned over his bench to the famous musician.

"Thank you," smiled Adam. "I won't keep you from your work for too long. I just want to surprise my wife with something I wrote right after we were married."

What was this? A new composition? Dave's ears perked up and his mouth stretched out in a wide grin. He backed away from the piano and watched as Wallace Shipley sat down on the very same bench that he had just occupied!

It was evident that the other patrons had been watching what was going on, for as Adam placed his hands on the keyboard, the entire restaurant came to a complete stand-still.

Amazed by their reaction, Charlie watched as everyone's eyes were glued to Adam. Then, the room began to echo with a hauntingly familiar tune. Charlie immediately recognized the melody, and her lips parted in a loving smile. Her memory returned to a storeroom, and the old piano that Adam had serenaded her on. "Do you know how much I love you?" he had asked. Yes, Charlie knew. She knew it every time he gazed at her with his handsome smile, and sought her company out from the others in a crowd. Charlie closed her eyes and sighed dreamily. She knew he loved her. She had no doubt of it.

Then, the music stopped, and the entire restaurant erupted into enthusiastic applause. Charlie opened her eyes to see Adam shaking Dave's hand and returning the instrument to its musician.

"May I ask," inquired Dave, "what the name of that piece was?"

"Charlotte." Just the saying of her name seemed to bring Adam much joy, and Dave nodded understandingly. He knew who Charlotte was, and needed no further explanation.

"It was an honor to meet you, Mr. Shipley," Dave fairly glowed with pleasure. "Thank you. I'll never forget this night, for as long as I live!"

With a wide grin, Adam strode back to their table and helped Charlie out of her chair.

"Now, we can leave," he winked.

When Adam and Charlie headed for the door, people thanked them as they passed their tables. The doorman called for Adam's limousine, and the three waited outside for their ride to arrive.

A cool wind blew against them, and Charlie couldn't help but shudder.

"Are you cold?" asked Adam, taking off his tuxedo jacket and draping it around her shoulders. Not content to have the jacket without its owner, Charlie leaned her head against Adam's chest and sighed contentedly.

"I had a wonderful time," she thanked him.

"Did you?" he softly breathed, putting his strong arms around her. The night seemed to hum with music, and so did Adam. Charlie could hear the tune he had just played, softly reverberating through his chest, while the sound of his steady heartbeat grew louder as her arms stole around his middle.

Just then, the limousine pulled up, ready to take them to the airfield where their private jet was waiting.

The engine whirred loudly, as they climbed up the aircraft's steps and found their usual seats in the cabin. Then the jet taxied down the runway, and Atlanta was reduced to twinkling lights that sparkled below them.
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