"There could be only one. Only one perfect girl."
Raised by the foster care system and ushered for as long as he can remember from one temporary home to another, Daniel not only knows the vast emptiness of complete loneliness and the dull ache of consistent disappointment and real heartbreak. He expects them.
Daniel is just another forgotten face, yet another neglected soul destined to never realize the true potential of his own capacity to love or ever experience actual happiness. He's a product of the system, much like all the others living out the same fate...except for one small fact: Daniel is a dreamer. His heart holds onto hope, his eyes are wide and open to possibility, his young mind still clings to the belief that there must be more in store for his small life.
When his foster agent leads Daniel to yet another new residence where he'll be left with strangers - this time, it's the Andersons - for an unknown length of time only they are permitted to decide for him, the sight of the idyllic, inviting house on Broad Street almost takes Daniel's breath away. As a soft, gentle voice calls to him from the wide, wraparound porch, his young eyes are drawn to the angelic sight of her.
Marie is captivatingly beautiful, elegantly graceful, and full of pure joy. Every aspect of her beams kindness, caring, and unconditional love. She is the epitome of motherly femininity. And Daniel's young, fragile heart begins to open to an all-new world where he begins to feel safe, nurtured, even adored. At last.
The mutual friendship that begins to grow between Daniel and Marie through countless moments spent together, affection exchanged, and promises shared is wholehearted, natural, and binding. The innocent solidity of their relationship is contrasted only by the joyless, watchful presence of the man of the house himself: Marie's husband, Richard.
Always stern and forever judgmental, Richard never truly welcomes Daniel into their home and is far from capable of recognizing how his own criticism and lack of emotional availability - even jealousy - only serve to drive Daniel and Marie closer together.
His youthful longing for love and acceptance combined with her naturally nurturing femininity and deep-seated need for returned affection and devotion is the beginning of their lifelong bond and forbidden romance.