Outside Bell, Book and Candle, Cassie flips through pictures on John’s cell phone. The last time the two saw each other was years ago in Istanbul, where they were part of an archeological dig. While there, Cassie realized that her life was headed in a different direction and she unexpectedly left to pursue her own path. Her departure left John feeling as though he’d abandoned her and things were never the same for John again. But John is now on to the next new chapter of his life, teaching archeology at the college in Blairsville. John now hopes that his new job will give he and Cassie the chance to get reacquainted.
The next morning Sam awkwardly attempts to use a shovel to clear the leaves from his yard. Grace walks over and suggests he try using a rake. Sam asks how her driving lessons are going and Grace laments that while her mom and Brandon mean well, they are not the best teachers. As she recounts the horrors of driving with her family, Sam begins to realize that she has an ulterior motive for her visit. He cuts to the chase and asks what she’s really driving at. Grace then nervously asks Sam if he will be her driving instructor. Sam’s surprised at first, but Grace pleads that he may be her only hope of ever learning to drive. Her pleas convince Sam that as long as it’s ok with Cassie, he’d be happy to be Grace’s driving instructor and they plan their first driving lesson for after school.
Inside Grey House Linda pulls a fresh batch of muffins from the oven. Sam walks in and is surprised to see his ex-wife baking. Cassie then walks into the kitchen and, still doing her best to be a polite hostess, graciously invites Linda to use the kitchen anytime. Sam approaches Cassie and the two discuss Sam’s giving Grace’s driving lessons. Linda immediately interjects, suggesting that Sam is too busy with work and with Nick to “teach someone else’s child to drive.” Sam stiffens and tells Linda that Grace isn’t just someone else’s child and that he can always find time for important things. Cassie smiles and thanks him while Linda sits stewing over Sam’s rebuke.
In downtown Middleton, Abigail and her realtor Chuck inspect a potential location for her new business. Despite ongoing renovations, the storefront is perfectly located, with lots of street and foot traffic. Chuck is doing his best to sell Abigail on the property, even telling Abigail that he has another interested tenant who’s willing to pay more for the location. The location is ideal and Abigail agrees to meet Chuck for dinner to finalize the deal.
Back at Grey House, Larry sits outside contemplating his failed engagement. Cassie sits with him as he explains that he loves Beth and has always done whatever he felt could to make her happy. But Beth’s strong personality has made him fearful of ever expressing his own feelings. The result is that in the three years they’ve dated, Beth has never gotten to know the real Larry. Cassie suggests Larry show Beth who he really is, but Larry doesn’t know where to start. His only hope now is that one day Beth will understand and forgive him.
Since Abigail quit her job at the bistro things have begun to spin out of control. On this particular day Stephanie runs from table to table doing her best to manage a crowd of hungry customers. At one of the tables, Ben finishes repairing one of the patio umbrellas. His face is a welcome break from the throngs of customers. But when he mentions that he just left inspecting Abigail’s new store, anger surges through Stephanie’s veins and she storms off. Hoping to make things better, Ben offers to make dinner, but Stephanie has to take a rain check, at least until she can find a suitable replacement.
Since learning that she’s not pregnant and that Brandon may not be ready for fatherhood, Tara has been staying at Grey House with Cassie. Hoping to lift her spirits, Brandon lays out a surprise breakfast with all her favorite foods. He flashes a big smile as Tara walks into the kitchen, but she is not ready to forgive and forget. She asks Brandon how he would really have felt if she had been pregnant. Brandon struggles to explain his feelings, but his non-answer says volumes. Frustrated, Tara tells him that the problem is clear: she wants a baby and he still doesn’t know what he wants.
Later in the evening, Beth tearfully apologizes to Cassie for canceling her wedding at the last minute. Larry walks in and tries to talk to Beth but she immediately shuts him down. Beth says she’s done talking and has already booked her flight home. Larry very meekly agrees and Beth gets up to walk away. But before they can leave, Cassie points out that Beth and Larry have to decide what to do with all the food, flowers, and other wedding arrangements they’ve made. Cassie says she would normally handle this type of situation but with a new employee at her shop, she needs Beth and Larry to handle this together.
At Sam’s house, Grace is filled with confidence as she pulls Sam’s car into the driveway. Fully self assured, Grace tells Sam that while she was a little nervous driving on the freeway, she feels like she did a great for her first time. Still recovering from the experience, Sam explains that Grace’s decision not to let the big rig pass was ‘interesting’ and that despite her assurances, the big rig driver was not waving at them. Grace takes Sam’s advice in stride and asks if he is available for another lesson tomorrow!
With the new location for her new shop secured, Abigail visits City Hall to plead with Martha for help with a new business permit. Through a whispered voice Martha explains that a new permit usually takes three months to process but Martha can expedite the process if Abigail will do her a favor. Martha’s new “K-Buddy” mentoring program pairs kindergartners with community leaders and business people. While she’s got interested children, Martha is in desperate need of a leader or business owner to volunteer. Martha offers to trade one expedited business permit for Abigail agreeing to spend the day with one of Martha’s ”K Buddies.” With no other options, Abigail agrees.
Later in the day Sam and Cassie walk through town chatting about Grace’s first driving lesson. Despite the harrowing experience on the freeway, Sam has agreed to take Grace on another driving lesson. In appreciation of his efforts Cassie offers to take Sam out for dinner. The prospect of a date with Cassie makes driving with Grace all the more worthwhile but, as they enter Cassie’s shop, Linda pops up to rain on the parade. She’s gotten three tickets for a college basketball game and, while Sam thinks it would be a perfect mother son outing, Linda insists that Nick wants the three of them at the game. Cassie understands and tells Sam they can reschedule their dinner date.
Later at Sam’s office, Eve is again gossiping with a patient. Sam enters the reception area and overhears Eve sharing the details of the very personal conversation he had with Linda. Eve’s gossiping ways are too much for Sam and he tells her that she must stop talking about everyone and everything. Chastened, Eve walks away and resumes her position at the reception desk.
Back at Grey House Larry and Beth try to work out where to send the food and flowers from their wedding. The discussion over their canceled wedding turns into an argument as Beth realizes that Larry has been going along with whatever she wanted in order to make her happy. Cassie makes her way downstairs to check on the couple and finds Brandon sitting in the living room watching the fight. He’d wanted to move but he didn’t want to be rude and interrupt. Watching the couple, he can’t believe they were thinking of getting married. It’s then that Cassie explains that Larry and Beth are not fighting, they are communicating, probably for the first time. She then tells Brandon that every couple needs to communicate from time to time.
The next day at Sam’s office Martha is again having her voice examined. Unfortunately, despite her attempts to stop talking, her laryngitis hasn’t improved. Sam tells her the horrible news that making a public speech could permanently damage her voice. Sam escorts her out of the office as she wipes tears from her eyes. Cassie, who is dropping off tea for Sam, tells her sometimes being there means more than words can express. Martha nods in appreciation and woefully leaves the office.
Cassie again thanks Sam for taking Grace on driving lessons. Unbeknownst to Cassie, the previous night, Linda had not so subtly mentioned to Sam that John was Cassie’s old boyfriend. Sam thanks her for the tea and then asks about the ‘new guy’ in town. Cassie casually explains that she and John we college friends, but Sam is unsure.
At the bistro, Stephanie sees Abigail walking by with a bouquet of flowers. Stephanie’s been unable to stop fuming about Abigail quitting, stealing her investor and her location but, after talking with Cassie and Ben, she’s decided to let it go. She approaches Abigail and tells her that despite what she did, she’s willing to forgive her. As they talk Chuck walks up and tells Stephanie that she dodged a bullet. Stephanie looks puzzled until he explains that the location she wanted for her new shop had a small electrical fire. The resulting investigation revealed numerous code violations and the building has been condemned. Abigail then points out that if Stephanie had signed the lease she would have been responsible for all the repairs. Stephanie is shocked into silence so Abigail simply tells her, “You’re welcome.”
As Stephanie heads back into the bistro Martha approaches Abigail with a bone to pick. Through her strained voice, Martha tells Abigail that she still owes her K-Buddy a mentoring session. Martha gives Abigail one day or the deal for the new permit is off. As Martha walks off, Chuck reminds Abigail that she also agreed to a dinner date if he got her the location for her new business. And regardless of the building being condemned, Chuck still wants his date.
Back at Bell, Book and Candle, Larry and Beth arrive to let Cassie know they’ve finished canceling their wedding plans. Before they leave Larry pulls out a letter and hands it to Cassie. He explains that he needed to sort some things out and it helped to write them all down. His started the letter talking about the wedding but ended up as an account of his feelings about Beth. Beth then pulls a letter from her pocket and reveals that she also wrote a letter about the wedding that ended up being a letter to Larry. As they begin talk they realize that their feelings for each other are still real and that perhaps they just need a fresh start. They thank Cassie for everything and leave to go and get to know each other for real.
Later in the evening, as Sam finishes work in his office, Eve arrives with a batch of oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. She apologizes for gossiping about his personal life and goes on to explain that in Middleton, everyone knows everything about everyone else. She explains that the beauty of small town life is that people know what’s going on in your life because they actually care about you. She then offers to find a replacement, someone more professional and less chatty. Sam realizes he may have been harsh, and smiles as he tells Eve that oatmeal chocolate chip cookies are his favorite. He then invites Eve to sit and gossip with him…about her problems with her dog.
In a beautiful florist shop in downtown Middleton, Abigail shows a young boy around cases filled with fresh flowers. In keeping her promise to Martha, Abigail was able to get the expedited permit to open a flower shop. She escorts her K-Buddy outside to a table where Chuck is sitting. He asks Abigail why flowers and she explains that she lived by the flower market in New York and fell in love with flowers. It also helped that the only other flower shop in town went out of business, leaving Abigail with no competition and lots of customers.
Back at Grey House, Cassie closes her mailbox as Sam pulls into his driveway. The news that Cassie has an ex-boyfriend in town has been weighing heavily on Sam’s mind. He gets out of his car and asks Cassie why she didn’t tell him about her ex-boyfriend coming back to town. She tells Sam that John is an old friend, not a boyfriend, and that his taking a job in Blairsville wasn’t really big news. Sam realizes that Linda is again trying to wind him up and control his life. Cassie doesn’t condone her actions but she does feel sorry for Linda. Her kindness reminds Sam why he’s fallen for her and asks if they can try dinner again. Cassie tells him absolutely.
Later in the day Cassie answers the door and finds John standing with a bottle of wine, her favorite. He asks if he can come in and tells her they have a lot to talk about. Cassie smiles but the concern is written all over her face.