Title: Friends & Enemies
Author: Melanie M./Shai/Misty
Archive: please ASK if you want to archive it.
Pairing: J/K, G/S
Rating: Probably R. No sex, just bad language and mild affection between two beautiful girls.
Disclaimers: I don’t own Once & Again or anything attached to the show/characters and I’m making absolutely nothing off of this fic. Well, accept for maybe feedback. The song belongs to the very talented group Expose & it’s called “I’ll Never Get Over You (Getting Over Me)”.
Comments: I need feedback. Remember, FEED ME! Shout outs & a big thanks to Crystal (piper_c22) & Shelly (shellybean) as well as many others who gave me input. To let you know, I love the song in this fic. You HAVE to listen to the song before you read the fic. It adds to the effect. Anyway, here we go.
Note: ~<>~ indicates song lyrics.
I’ll Never Get Over You Getting Over Me
Sarah sat on her bed, peering into the night. Tears welled up in her eyes. How could she have been so stupid? Why did she fall in love? She still couldn’t figure it out. No matter what she did she still loved Katie and that feeling wouldn’t go away. She’d tried everything but nothing seemed to work.
I hear you’re taking the town again
Having a good time with all you good-time friends
There was a party tonight. A few actually but she just couldn’t go. She knew she couldn’t. Nothing made her happy anymore. She bowed her head. Katie would be at those parties and she couldn’t be there. Jessie would just be cruel to her and she’d make things worse by being just as cruel in return.
Katie was always the life of the party. She made everything come to life. It was like being next to her made life shimmer. She made the sun shine in the darkest of nights.
“Katie,” she whispered into the breeze, “I love you.” A tear trailed down her cheek. The searing pain inside impaled her will to live. She really saw no point in pretending anymore. They could be friends but that wouldn’t go over well with Jessie. She gritted her teeth as THAT name crossed her mind. Why couldn’t Katie just love her back? Why did she have to fall for that Sammler girl?
I don’t think that you think of me
You’re on your own now and I’m alone and free
With a mournful smile she reflected on all those times with Katie that she cherished. One moment in particular. The moment she knew she was hopelessly in love with Katie.
“You’re so goofy, you know that?”
“It’s your fault. I only get this way around you!” Katie smiled happily, teasing her friend as she always did.
Sarah smiled. “You’re gonna get it for that comment!” She pounced on the other girl and they began tickling each other and rolling around in the grass.
When they finally stopped, all laughed out, they rested in the grass on their backs. “You know, I don’t know what I’d do without you Katie.”
“You won’t have to be without me, so don’t think about it, k? I’m here if you need me Sarah. Always.”
“Always,” she sobbed.
I know that I should get on with my life
But a life lived without you could never be right
Wiping her tears, she remembered a song. She couldn’t recall the lyrics but it was about moving on. She knew she had to but for some reason she couldn’t. Katie was her sunshine and now that light had been lost forever. Only stormy days ahead could she see for the lightness had faded to black and gray.
Katie was over her and she knew that but she’d never forget holding that angel in her arms and feeling happy for the only time in her life. Looking up at the stars she saw one shoot across the sky. Making a silent wish, more tears poured down her pale cheeks.
She knew she’d better go to sleep or dawn would come to mock her and she wouldn’t be able to go into that wonderful land of dreams where she could hold Katie again. With one last glance at the stars she remembered yet another moment with Katie.
As long as the stars shine down from the heavens
As long as the rivers run to the seas
I’ll never get over you getting over me
“It’s beautiful, isn’t it?”
“Yeah. I like it. It’s so. . .”
“Emotional? Water’s like that.”
Katie smiled. “Yeah? I never really noticed.”
“Water’s passionate. If flows so smoothly yet it thrashes around. It’s like love. You know, the good times and the bad?”
“Yeah, that too.” Sarah beamed up at Katie with a loving smile. “I love you.”
Katie smiled warmly. “I love you too.”
Throwing herself on her bed, she crawled under the covers to hide from the world. Tomorrow would only bring more pain, more anger and it would only bring her closer to losing her soul altogether.
Monday at school, lunch time
With her head bowed Sarah walked through the crowd. She just wanted to be alone. Things had gotten worse over the weekend. She spent most of it in her room crying and sleeping. The memories were getting harder to block out and she knew that soon she’d loose her cool. The one thing she didn’t want to happen was for her breaking point to happen at school.
“Hey Sarah! Can I be your girlfriend? I’d love to break your heart!” some nobody screamed from afar with her friends cheering her on.
I try to smile so the hurt won’t show
Tell everybody I was glad to see you go
“Shove it loser! Why don’t you go back to dating canines and leave me alone? I’m way outta your league anyway freak,” Sarah spat angrily. She heard a few “oooh” noises from the peanut gallery before she decided to completely ignore them. She walked faster until she collided with another human body. She was a little stunned from the impact but what made her day was seeing Tad glaring down at her. This was just what she needed. More shit thrown her way, more insults.
“Why if it isn’t Little Miss Drama Queen. Where’s your bitch posse? Run off on you for better company like Katie or did they just get tired of you?” he laughed.
But the tears just won’t go away
No meaner smile on me
Looks like it’s here to stay
That was her breaking point. She could sense Katie drawing nearer. That meant Jessie couldn’t be far behind but she didn’t care. Tears filled her eyes though she tried to hold them back. Pushing him out of her way she ran as fast as she could, hiding in the only place she could, under the bleachers. Holding her knees to her chest she cried her heart out.
“Hey Tad. Was that Sarah?” Katie asked, only mildly concerned.
“I’m not sure. I think it was. Might have been a clone.”
“What do you mean you’re not sure?” Katie asked, slightly confused.
“Well, she was all Queen Bitch at first and then I said something and I swear, she was crying. She pushed me outta the way and ran off.”
“What did you say to her?”
“Sarah was crying?” Jessie asked with a raised brow. She was actually shocked. She didn’t think Sarah could cry. It was impossible or something.
“I just asked where her friends were. Ya know, if they decided to hang out with better people or got bored with her and then she ran off. I swear she had tears in her eyes. You think she was hurt or something?”
Katie eyed him suspiciously. “Maybe.” The entire time she was with Sarah she’d only seen her cry once and that had been when they broke up. This didn’t sound good.
“It was probably her pride or her ego. I’m sure she’s off whining to her wannabe friends about us by now,” Jessie grumbled.
Tad nodded with a smirk. “Or she’s starting some kinda vicious rumor. That’ll probably make her happy.”
I know that I oughta find someone new
But all I find is myself always thinking of you
Sarah sobbed harder, unaware of the lone onlooker who’s heart was breaking at the site before her. Wiping her tears away she gathered her stuff and prepared to face the world again. She couldn’t show any weaknesses at school. She couldn’t. Standing tall, she held her bags tightly and walked out into the field. Sitting on the bleachers she began to study.
After reading yet another tragic story by William Shakespeare she set the book aside and looked toward the sky. Remembering a few lyrics from the song she sang what she remembered.
As long as the stars shine down from the heavens
As long as the rivers run to the seas
I’ll never get over you getting over me
She smiled. It fit perfectly. She’d never get over Katie completely and she’d never get over Katie getting over her. “Stupid Tad. Why’d he have to bring up Katie? God, why can’t I just forget about her? She’ll never return my feelings. I can’t blame Jessie, I know that but it would be a hell of a lot easier. Sarah, get a hold of yourself you wimp. You have homework to do and more important things to worry about than your broken heart,” she scolded herself, not realizing she’d said that aloud. Wiping away a forming tear she decided to do her American Government assignment. Taking out a sheet of paper she began to write as the figure watching her silently slipped away.
Grace stomped angrily toward a group she wasn’t too fond of. Standing in front of the tall, dark haired boy she crossed her arms over her chest and ignored the questions coming from the other two members of the group. “Who the hell do you think you are?”
Tad backed away slowly. He could tell the older girl was pissed off but he didn’t know why it was aimed at him. “Huh?” he muttered in confusion.
Grace’s eyes were burning through him, her cheeks scarlet with fury. “Tell me why you threw it in her face? What right did you have Tad?” she barked ferociously.
“I. . .uh. . .”
“Grace, back off!” Jessie growled, not liking this situation at all.
“You back off! This is between me and Mr. Thinks He’s All That! It’s none of your damn business Jessie!” Grace hissed, causing Jessie to take a step back.
Jessie looked at Katie pleadingly. She’d never seen Grace this angry and she knew now that she never wanted to again. This uneasy feeling was settling in her stomach. She was actually afraid of what her stepsister might do.
Katie raised a brow. What was going on here? What had Tad done to piss Grace off this much?
“Answer me! Why the hell did you bring Katie into it, huh? Stab the fricken knife in and twist? Is that how you scumbag jocks get off?” Grace was trembling slightly, her eye twitching as the veins in her neck became visible.
Katie stepped in between the scared jock and the irate girl. “Grace, back off. Give him some space.”
Grace glared right through Katie. “Answer me,” she whispered coldly, scaring the other three people more than she had with her angry voice. Her tone was so desolate and bitter that it chilled to the bone. It was as if all she bore for this being was a death wish if he didn’t answer her immediately.
“I. . .didn’t. . .m-mean to. I. . .it just came out,” Tad stammered nervously.
Grace gave him a disgusted look and turned to walk away. “Don’t do it again. Ever.” Then she walked away, the others watching as she left.
Jessie, Katie and Tad stood there in silence for nearly ten minutes. “What did you do Tad?” Jessie finally whispered, breaking the silence.
“I think she ran into Sarah.”
“But why would she care? Grace isn’t really the kinda person to hand out sympathy,” Katie inquired.
“Maybe she’s just more touchy. You know, since Mr. Dimitri was fired.” They all nodded, still somewhat afraid of running into Grace later in the day. Mr. Dimitri had been gone for weeks now but Grace had been more grouchy lately.
Walking through the park in silence Jessie looked over at Katie. “So, is she ok?”
“I dunno. I didn’t see her after lunch.” Katie sighed. She wanted to comfort her ex but she didn’t know how Jessie would react. She still wanted to be friends but that wasn’t really an option at the moment. Apparently Sarah was still hurt and angry.
“Oh.” Jessie didn’t want to hold Katie back. She knew why Katie hadn’t gone off to find Sarah and she blamed herself for the other girls pain. She felt like she had caused Sarah’s pain and the guilt was really starting to eat away at her. Running her fingers through her soft blonde hair, she sat on a bench next to Katie. “I don’t, you know.”
“Wanna hold you back.”
“Huh? Jessie, what are you talking about? You set me free. How could you think you’re holding me back?”
“I just. . .she was crying. I made it happen,” Jessie sighed.
“No. Jessie, it’s not our fault. I. . .”
“I took you away from her.”
“No! I fell for you, remember? If anyone’s to blame it’s me. I. . .” Katie bowed her head, not feeling proud of what she was about to say. “I broke her heart.”
There was a moment of silence. Jessie sighed, wrapping her arms around her girl. “I feel sorry for her.”
“So do I. I just don’t know how to help.”
“Maybe. . .we could find someone for her. I mean, I’m not her biggest fan but I just can’t stand to see her hurting.”
“I know,” Katie whispered, caressing Jessie’s cheek. “I think I should talk to her first. Would it bother you being friends with her? She’s not Miss Pleasant in public but she really is a good person inside.”
“Yeah. We could get together away from school if she wants.”
“That sounds great.”
No matter what I do
Each night’s a lifetime to live through
I can’t go on like this
Sarah couldn’t hear what they were saying but she could see them. She could see the love between them. The gentle caresses, the loving glances, the content tone in their voices. She could remember when she’d been that way with Katie. Leaning back on the tree she closed her eyes. Why did this hurt so bad? Why couldn’t she just give in to temptation and end all of this?
There was something inside that wouldn’t let her give up. Some microscopic fragment of her that believed Katie wouldn’t leave her completely. She’d said always but had she meant it? Knowing now that “I love you” had only been a profession of friendship she prayed that everything else had been true. She didn’t want to pretend to be cruel anymore. She wanted to be who she was inside and she really didn’t care if anyone noticed or didn’t like it.
I need your touch
You’re the only one I’ll ever love
Sinking in sorrow, she wrapped her arms around herself. She was taken to a time when those arms had been Katie’s. She spent a moment in bliss at the thought but broke away from the memory before she could start crying. With a smile she sat down, cleared her throat and sang. Loud and clear so that maybe Katie would hear.
And as long as the stars shine down from the heavens
As long as the rivers run to the seas
I’ll never get over you getting over me
Katie’s head snapped in the direction of the singing. She knew that voice, that song. She stood, totally confusing Jessie. . “Expose, I'll Never Get Over You Getting Over Me,” she mumbled. Listening more contently she heard the last few sung words of passion, anguish and somehow forgiveness
I'll never get over you getting over
Never get over you getting over
I'll never get over you getting over me
Looking down at Jessie she smiled. “I’ll be right back,” she whispered, kissing her girlfriend on the cheek. She then walked to the tree to find Sarah sitting there with her eyes shut tight, her arms around her body tightly as she fought to hold back tears. “Sarah?”
Sarah swallowed hard, opening her bloodshot eyes. She knew she couldn’t speak because it would only come out broken and weak so she nodded.
Katie’s heart ached at the site before her. Now she knew why Grace had been so angry. Gazing deep into the brunettes eyes she smiled warmly. “I’m not gonna give up on you,” she confessed. “Always, remember?”
Sarah sniffled. “Always?”
“Always.” Katie took Sarah into her arms and hugged her tightly.
Jessie, who’d followed Katie, just smiled. Sure she’d have to get use to having Sarah around but this looked like a new beginning for all of them. Seeing Sarah so heartbroken had made her see that there is always a sweet, kind person inside somewhere, people just don’t get to see it.
Sarah closed her eyes. This was part of letting go but at least she’d still have Katie in her life. “Thank you,” she whispered, opening her eyes to look at Jessie.
Jessie raised a brow. “Me? For what?”
“Letting everything slide.” Sarah let Katie go and bowed her head.
“Hey, you weren’t being you. I get that now. I’m gonna have to get to know this whole new person but I’m ok with that,” Jessie replied. Smiling, she offered her hand to Sarah. “Friends?”
Sarah beamed with joy. “Sure,” she answered, shaking the blonde’s hand.
Katie smirked. “What do you two say to ice cream, my treat?”
Both girls looked at each other then nodded in agreement. Things were looking brighter. The gloom was slipping away and now they all felt like a burden had been lifted from their shoulders.
“So, you doing anything later? Jess and I are going to the movies and we wanted to know if you wanted to come.”
“Are you gonna actually watch the movie this time or is it gonna be another smooch fest? And I’d love to go.”
Katie smiled. “Actually, we’re seeing Resident Evil so we’ll be watching it this time,” she giggled.
“Well, I have to get home. Have some homework to do before I go with you and Jessie.”
“Ok, cool. I’ll pick you up around 6, k?”
“Sure.” Sarah smiled then headed home. Things had been great lately. Seeing Jessie with Katie didn’t hurt her anymore. It actually got her thinking that maybe there was somebody out there for her.
She did have somebody in mind but that was just a fantasy. She’d never be able to go anywhere with this girl and she knew it but for some reason she couldn’t stop herself from falling.
“Eli, can I come in?”
“Uh, sure Grace. What’s up?”
“Well, there’s this thing. A problem. My friend’s got a major crush on somebody but she doesn’t know how to tell them.”
“You’re joking right? You’re asking me how she should tell him? Grace, what’s really going on?”
“Ugh, men! Forget it!” Grace huffed, storming out of the garage. Marching to Jessie’s door she tapped lightly.
Grace walked in and sat on the bed next to Jessie. “Can I talk to you?”
“Sure,” Jessie replied, setting her homework aside.
“Don’t laugh, ok?”
“I have this friend and she’s got a crush but she’s not sure about how to tell this person. She really needs some help so, do you have any advise?”
“Well, if she really likes this person she should tell them. If other stuff makes it complicated, then go the safe route.”
“Yeah. Letters are the best way of communicating in this kinda case. I think you, um, your friend should send her crush a note.”
“What kind of note?”
“Something sweet, something that says how your friend feels. Then she has to decide whether or not she’ll sign it with her name or keep her identity a mystery.”
“The secret admirer game? How did you get so good at this?”
Jessie smirked. “First hand experience.”
“Yeah? Hey Jess, thanks,” Grace whispered, kissing Jessie on the forehead before leaving to type a letter out on the nearest PC.
Katie giggled as the credits went up on the screen. “I guess she was really tired,” she sighed.
“Or the movie bored her to death but that’s not likely. Thankfully we decided to hit the drive in instead of a theater,” Sarah replied with a smile as she watched Jessie snuggle warmly to Katie whom she’d fallen asleep on. A moment of silence caused both girls to feel slightly uneasy. This was kinda weird. Sarah sighed, then decided it was now or never. “Katie, can I talk to you? I mean, away from Jessie? I know she’s asleep but you know, I just. . .it’s kinda strange.”
“Sure. I totally get the strangeness,” Katie replied, slowly slipping away from Jessie. She met her best friend behind the car and stared at her silently. She could tell this was something that meant a lot to her ex and she hoped she would be able to help.
“This girl I know has a crush on somebody and she doesn’t know what to do. Got any ideas?”
“Well, I think your friend should send her crush a letter. If you, I mean she, wants to she can sign it with her name or play the secret admirer game. Just tell her not to be vulgar and stuff. That kinda turns a person off, ya know?”
“Yeah. Katie, thanks,” Sarah replied, hugging Katie tightly.
Sarah sighed as she opened her locker. She raised a brow as she took out a typed letter and a rose. She hadn’t put it there and apparently somebody knew her combination but right now that didn’t seem to matter. She smiled to herself, put her books in her locker and headed over to the bleachers where she was suppose to meet up with Jessie and Katie. Approaching them she realized the note and the rose were still firmly in her hand but she ignored it for now and sat next to Jessie on the bench.
“Hey Sarah!” Katie squeaked, hugging her friend gently. She winced and backed away when she felt a sharp pinch on her arm. She saw the rose and smiled. “Who’s it from? C’mon, spill!”
“Um. . .I don’t know. I haven’t read it yet,” Sarah admitted, blushing slightly.
“Read it!” Jessie screamed anxiously.
Sarah blushed more as she opened the letter. Reading it over her cheeks began burning red as ripe strawberries. Looking at Jessie and Katie she ducked her head shyly.
“What’s it say?” Jessie squealed excitedly.
Before Sarah could say a word Katie grabbed the letter and opened it. Clearing her throat she began to read it. “To Sarah, dark angel of my heart. No words I could write would describe what I feel for you. You make sunshine of my rain. You forge passion in my dreams of sorrow. I see but I’m blind. I’m in a whirlwind. Thoughts of you take me away. I feel for what seems like the first time but when I open my eyes the mirage fades away. I want more than a mirage but fear seizes me, paralyzes me. What I need to say is that I like you. Professions of love may come but I’ll only state what I know to be true. You haunt every moment I live, every breath I take. That I know is true. This rose is a symbol of you. Sweet, beautiful and perfect in my eyes. Hold this to your heart and you just might see me. I’ll write more soon. Kisses and roses, your secret admirer.”
Jessie smiled brightly. “Hey Sarah, looks like you’ve got a secret admirer and they really dig you.”
Sarah turned several shades of red before snatching the letter from Katie’s hand and shoving it in her pocket. She gazed at the gorgeous blooming red rose, letting a girlish grin spread freely across her lips. Bringing the rose to her heart she saw a glowing image in her mind and smiled as the other two watched her.
“Soooo. . .what are you gonna do?” Katie whispered.
“WAIT!” both Jessie and Katie roared.
“Yeah. It’s not like I know who it is.”
Jessie nodded. She had an idea but she couldn’t tell at this point. Anything was possible.
“You wanna see Boys Don’t Cry with Katie and me tonight?”
“Sure,” Grace answered hurriedly as she rushed into her room, not really realizing she’d agreed to see the movie.
Grace sat on her bed, eyeing the pink piece of paper. Opening it for the first time she read what is said. “To Grace, my white knight. My heart fell when I met you. I didn’t know what it was at first but now I know it’s something even I can’t capture with words. I can’t say it’s love just yet but I’m falling, falling deep. A simple glance is all I need to make me smile. You make me smile. What I feel for you is true and I hope you’ll give me a chance. If you want to know anything, you can write back and slip it in locker 315. I don’t know what else to write so I leave you with that. XOXO, your secret admirer.” She smiled. It was short and sweet, the way she liked it. It cut to the chase. No bull, just the info. Sighing, she threw herself onto her bed and wished she could just tell Sarah how she felt. Maybe the letter was from her but Grace doubted it. Closing her eyes she fell fast asleep.
“Hey Sarah, did you wanna go see Boys Don’t Cry with Jess and me? I know you like Chloe, so I figured you’d wanna see it via the big screen,” Katie asked as Sarah opened the car door.
“I’d love to. What time?”
“About two hours.”
“Pick me up in about an hour and a half.”
“K. I’ll go hang with Jess then come back.”
“Ok, I’ll be ready.” Sarah hurried into her house as Katie drove off.
Arriving at the Sammler home, Katie parked and got out of her car. She walked up to the door just as Jessie opened it. “Hey.”
“Hey. Come in. Hope you don’t mind but I invited Grace to go with us tonight.”
“Really? I invited Sarah.”
“Cool.” Jessie led Katie up to her room and made sure the door was locked.
“So what’s up?”
“I think Grace is Sarah’s secret admirer.”
“It sounded like her writing. I told Grace she should let her crush know that she likes them through a letter and look what happened.”
“It could be a coincidence.”
“I doubt it.”
“You really think so? Sarah asked me about that too and I told her the same thing. Did Grace get anything?”
“I think so. When she rushed into her room earlier she was clutching a pink piece of paper.”
“Did it smell like vanilla?”
“Did the paper smell like vanilla?”
Jessie tried to remember. Then it came to her. She did smell vanilla but she thought it was Grace. “Yeah, why?”
“That’s Sarah’s paper. When she writes letters she uses that.”
“See, I told you.”
“This is so cool. Maybe they’ll talk tonight.”
“Yeah. It’s good that they both feel the same,” Jessie sighed, snuggling up to Katie.
“Grace! Open up! It’s Jessie. We have to go in a few!” Jessie shouted as she hammered on the door.
Grace stumbled to the door. Opening it she growled, “what?”
“The movie starts in an hour and we have to go pick up Sarah.”
Grace tilted her head, lost as to what Jessie was talking about. “So?”
“So get ready. You are coming right? You said you would,” Jessie replied, pouting.
Grace remembered now and mentally smacked herself for agreeing. “Wait, Sarah’s going?”
“Yeah. Katie invited her. It’s her fav movie. Hurry up and get ready. We have to be at her house in half.”
Grace nodded and shut the door. Stumbling to her closet she contemplated taking a quick shower. Deciding it couldn’t hurt she plucked an outfit from her closet and hopped in the shower.
Jessie woke Katie gently. “Hey, we have to go in a little while.”
“Hmmm?” Katie murmured sleepily.
“The movie starts in an hour.”
“Oh. I must’ve fallen asleep.”
“Yeah. You look adorable when you sleep.”
“You were watching me sleep?”
“Yeah. Apparently you weren’t the only one taking a cat nap.”
“I went to ask Grace if she was ready and I heard her stumble out of bed, to the door. She wasn’t happy to see me and then when I reminded her of the movie she didn’t remember saying she’d go. She’s getting ready.”
Katie rubbed her eyes awake then stretched.
Both girls jumped, looking toward the hallway. “Guess that’s our queue,” Katie yawned.
Jessie nodded and they met Grace at the bottom of the stairs. They all headed to Katie’s car, Grace crawling into the back seat with a yawn. Jessie studied Grace briefly before getting into the front seat. Grace looked slightly stressed like this was a pop quiz she hadn’t expected. Jessie pondered this as Katie started the car and began driving.
Grace sat quietly in the back seat thinking of what on Earth she was gonna do. She really liked Sarah and she didn’t want to screw this up. She didn’t want things to go wrong like they always did when it came to her and love. She’d dreamt this scenario a million times but now that it was coming true she was scared. She wanted to run away but that emotion was normal to her. She’d learned to block it out and just run with her emotions but this time seemed different. She wanted to listen to the part of her that wanted to run but something wouldn’t let her. This little part in her told her everything would work out, everything would be ok. Sighing deeply she realized they weren’t moving anymore. Looking up she saw Katie getting out of the car. They were at Sarah’s house.
“Hey. Who’s in the car?”
“Oh, I hope you don’t mind but Jess invited Grace.”
Sarah went pale. Grace? Of all the people in the world Jessie had to invite Grace. “Oh, I don’t mind at all,” Sarah replied, thinking ‘oh god. Don’t screw this up Sarah. Here’s your chance so take it.’ Sarah got in the back seat next to Grace, hoping her heart wouldn’t leap out of her chest.
Katie got in and smiled. “Ok, the drive-in’s gonna be really busy so you guys get popcorn and whatever else you want while I find a parking spot, k?”
The other girls agreed and it was off to the movies they went.
Jessie bit her bottom lip. “You think we should get popcorn?”
Grace rolled her eyes. “I’m not eating any and I think Sarah’s got plenty for the three of you.”
Jessie nodded. “I think that’s it.”
“I’m gonna go to the bathroom before the movie starts. I don’t wanna miss any of it. I’ll meet you in the car,” Sarah replied.
Jessie nodded. “Good idea. What about you Grace? You wanna go with me or wait til Sarah’s done?”
“Um,” Grace didn’t like both of them staring at her so she replied quickly, “I think I’ll stay if you think you’ll be ok walking alone.”
Jessie shot Grace a playful glare. “Very funny. I’ll see you guys there.” Jessie departed as the other two headed into the bathroom.
Sarah brushed past Grace on her way to the stalls and smiled apologetically. Entering the stall she let out a sigh. What was she gonna do? She wanted to make her move but it was still hard to tell if Grace was into her or if she was just in a better mood than usual. Closing her eyes she began to think out her next move.
Grace leaned against the wall and sighed. Then she realized something. When Sarah had brushed past her she’d smelt something very faint but fragrant. She knew that smell but try as she might she couldn’t remember where she’d smelt it before. Biting her bottom lip she tried to recall what the scent was.
Sarah exited the stall, heading to the sink to wash her hands. Watching Grace in the mirror she wondered if now was the time. Facing the other girl she tried to speak but failed.
Grace got wide-eyed. Now she remembered that exotic smell, that vanilla scent that had won her over when she’d read the short yet sweet letter. “Sarah, uh. . .”
“Um. . .did you write me a letter?”
Sarah blushed a deep crimson, giving away her answer before she could speak. “I. . .if you’re not like that I understand. I mean, I like you but if. . .”
Grace placed her finger over Sarah’s lips. “It was sweet. I liked it. I. . .I sent you a letter too.”
Sarah smiled. “Your letter was beautiful.”
They stared into each others eyes. Drawing closer their lips gently touched. Grace pulled away slightly.
“I. . .I’m sorry,” Sarah whispered.
“No. It. . .it’s not you. I have this thing with relationships. They always go wrong. I just. . .I don’t wanna. . .”
“Or hurt you.”
Sarah placed her hand over Grace’s heart. “I won’t hurt you.”
Grace smiled, taking Sarah’s hand in hers. “I won’t hurt you either.”
They exchanged smiles and headed to Katie’s car to watch the movie.
Katie yawned. The movie was finally over and it was time to go home. Looking over at Jessie she smiled. Her love was curled up and asleep. Touching her cheek lovingly she looked into the back seat and smiled.
Grace looked up, blushing slightly. Sarah had fallen asleep on her shoulder and now she sat there caressing the brunettes silky hair. Looking at Katie she smiled brightly. Both Jessie and Katie had known about their letters to each other but let them figure it out instead of trying to play matchmaker and for that Grace respected them.
“Hey, maybe we could go on a double date sometime,” Katie offered, really wanting to include Grace in her circle of friends.
Grace smiled. “I’d like that. Maybe we could go dancing.”
“Cool,” Katie replied, starting the engine after giving Jessie a quick peck on the cheek. The drive to the Sammler home was rather quiet considering Grace was falling asleep and Katie was preying she could make it there.
Parking in front of the garage, Katie gently woke Jessie. “Hmmm?” Jessie muttered.
“We better get in there. Curfew’s in about ten. Do you think I could stay the night?”
Jessie stretched and yawned. “I don’t think dad and Lily will mind. You can stay in my room and Sarah can stay with Grace,” Jessie replied, still half asleep.
Katie nodded and shook Sarah and Grace awake. All four girls headed inside, trying to be as quiet as possible.
“You girls are home a little late aren’t you?” Lily asked from the bottom of the stairs.
“Sorry mom, we fell asleep at the movies,” Grace replied.
Lily smiled. “Sleep tight girls.”
We Like to Party
“So, we on for tonight?”
“I’m in. Have you talked to Jess and Katiuska?”
“Yeah. They’re both going.”
“Isn’t your curfew midnight?”
“Yeah. I told mom you and Katie were gonna spend the night and that we were gonna hang out in Jessie’s room after a party we’re going to.”
“So we have to sneak back in?”
“That’s the plan. I’ve already set everything up but we have to make sure Jessie’s door is locked so nobody closes the window. That would be a crisis.”
“No kidding. I’ll see you in half, k ai?”
“Ok enjeru,” Grace replied. With a smile she hung up. Their pet names were so clever. Nobody would ever guess what the heck they were talking about unless they studied Japanese. Sarah always called her ai, which meant love and she called Sarah enjeru which meant angel. It fit. They fit. With a smile she walked to Jessie’s room and knocked. “You ready?”
“Yeah,” Jessie and Katie chorused as the door opened.
Jessie smiled. “Everything’s set,” she whispered as Katie exited Jessie’s room.
“We’ll meet you in the car,” Grace whispered before leading Katie downstairs.
“Where’s Jessie?” Lily asked before Grace and Katie had the chance to walk out the door.
“She’s in the car. Katie and I were just talking to Sarah to make sure she was ready,” Grace answered. Katie took this opportunity to leave while Grace was stuck waiting for her mother’s reply.
“Oh. I didn’t see her leave. Well, you girls have a good time. Grace, I’m really glad you’re spending more time with Jessie. I think she really looks up to you.”
Grace tried not to laugh. That concept was more than funny but she’d laugh later. “Thanks mom. I’d better get going. Jessie and Katie are waiting,” she replied, taking her only chance to leave. After all, if she didn’t leave now her mom might decide to question her about who’s party they were going to. Getting in her car she smiled. Tonight would be a night to remember.
Jessie eyed the big building. “Are we in the right place?”
“Yup. It’s in there. Tad’s cousin Kat her sister Crystal are DJing tonight,” Katie explained.
Grace grinned. “Don’t worry, I know the bouncers so we won’t have to pay a cover.”
“What kinda club is this anyway?” Sarah asked, more than slightly curious.
“It’s a gay teen dance club. They open every other weekend,” Grace replied. The other three girls stared at her. “What? What?”
“Won’t people start stuff at school?” Jessie asked, a little afraid of what rumors could start flying on Monday at school.
“I’ve been here before. Everyone here’s cool. They don’t care where you come from or who you are. Everything’s first name basis and if anyone from school sees us they won’t say anything. If they did they’d be implying they were here and most people, for some odd reason, freak out if people know they’re gay.”
Sarah nodded. “Anyway, what’s the big deal? People already think you two are dating, Grace has been here before and everyone knows I’m gay so it really doesn’t matter.”
They all nodded then headed into the club. The bouncer, a tall buff African American guy, recognized Grace immediately and let them in ahead of a few other people. As they entered the club, “We Like to Party” by the Vengaboys blared into their ears. Grace dragged Sarah onto the dance floor as “Run Away” by Real McCoy began to play.
Jessie watched from the punch bowl as Katie chatted with a few friends. Just then a girl approached her. “Hey there sweet thing. You want some x? Since you’re cute and all I’ll give it to ya free.”
Jessie nearly choked on her drink. She’d only been here a matter of minutes and already she was being offered drugs. “Um, no thanks,” she coughed. Katie came up behind her and smiled.
“Hey, you ok?”
“Uh, yeah. I’m fine. Let’s dance.”
Lily sighed. “Rick, they’re still gone.”
“What time is it?”
“One. I made it clear to Grace that she had to be home on time. I think they planned on being gone.”
“What makes you say that?” he inquired, intrigued.
“When I went to see if they were in Jessie’s room the door was locked. I checked outside and the window was wide open. Rick, what if they’re at one of those rave parties? They could get hurt. Do you know how many kids die at those things because of drugs.”
Rick sighed. “Our girls are too smart to do drugs Lil. Plus, Sarah and Katie are with them and we both know those two wouldn’t let either of them touch anything like that. When they get home we’ll ground them. Since it’s late we can’t just send Katie and Sarah home so they might as well stay but it’s gonna be the last time for a while,” he replied, very tired and not in the mood to deal with much of anything right now.
Lily nodded. “I hope they come home soon.”
Grace sighed as she parked in front of her house. All four of them got out, giggling and hushing each other as they climbed up to Jessie’s room. As they all settled in the light suddenly flipped on. They all froze.
“I was wondering when you’d get home. Do you know what time it is?”
“Um. . .” Grace fumbled with her watch.
“Try three in the morning. You’re both grounded. We’ll talk more about it tomorrow but for now Grace, go to your room. Sarah, go with her. Katie, you’re sleeping up here with Jessie. Any questions?” Getting no response Lily waited outside of Grace’s room to make sure they did as she instructed.
Grace sighed and got up, motioning for Sarah to follow. They exited Jessie’s room and went into Grace’s. After this Lily went to her room to go to sleep.
“I love you.”
Jessie smiled, curling up close to Katie. “I love you too.” She then met Katie’s eyes and kissed her tenderly.
Meanwhile in Grace’s room. . .
“Take your shirt off.”
“Sarah, I. . .”
“I wanna give you a back rub. Nothing more if you’re not ready, ok?”
Grace blushed. “Ok,” she whispered, taking her shirt off. Laying on her stomach she tried to relax.
Sarah began to gently caress her girlfriend’s back.
“You’ve got wonderful hands.”
Morning beckoned to steal away their sunshine for surprises lurked around every corner.
Lily smiled cheerily as she walked to Grace’s room. She’d gotten a good nights sleep which gave her a more lenient look on her daughter’s punishment. Not bothering to knock, she stepped into Grace’s room and nearly collapsed due to shock. What she saw before her confirmed her suspicions of Grace being gay but seeing all that she had was just too much. She turned her back and closed the door.
Both girls jumped. They were curled up under the covers now, hiding their naked bodies and baring crimson cheeks. They’d just woken up and settled on a good morning kiss when Lily had walked in. To say the least, they’d only been covered from the waist down. “Mom,” Grace squeaked, embarrassed.
Lily cleared her throat. “Grace, we really need to talk later. Breakfast in ten minutes.” With that she left as fast as she could.
Meanwhile. . .
Rick stretched, still a little grouchy from the night before. Quietly opening Jessie’s door he took a few step, looking toward the bed. He nearly fell backward. His little girl was kissing another girls. It wasn’t one of those innocent pecks on the cheek either. It was one of those “I love you, good morning” kisses with tongue and all. His face turned red with anger and embarrassment. He could tell they both had their clothes on so nothing more had happened but it still infuriated him.
“Dad?” Jessie squeaked in surprise.
“Jessie, breakfast in ten minutes. We’ll talk about this later after Katie and Sarah go home,” he mumbled as calmly as he could at the moment. Retreating from his daughters room he headed for the kitchen. Now he really needed his morning cup of coffee.
“Grace, I’ve decided to ground you for a week. No phone and no car unless I say otherwise. Are we clear?”
“Yeah,” Grace answered, standing to leave.
“We’re not done here.”
Grace sat back down with a frown.
“About you and Sarah. . .”
“Mom, I’m sorry I didn’t tell you. I was just. . .”
“Afraid. It’s ok honey. I understand. I just want you to know I’m ok with it and that I’ll love you no matter who you choose to date.”
“Really?” Grace asked, a bit surprised.
“Of course. At least now I don’t have to worry about you getting pregnant.” They both smiled as Grace gave her mom a hug.
“Thanks for understanding mom.”
Meanwhile in the next room. . .
“Dad I. . .”
“Don’t try to explain Jessie. You’re grounded for a week. No phone, no TV and you are not to make any contact with Katie Singer at all. No phone calls, letters, anything. Are we clear?” Rick growled sternly.
“But Dad, I love her.”
“You don’t know what love is. What you two have is disgusting and unnatural not to mention it’s immoral. If I find out you’re seeing her I’ll make sure you never see her again. Are we clear?”
“Are you threatening me?”
“Are we clear?” he snarled, not in the mood to debate right now.
“Do her parents even know about this sick game?”
“It’s not a game dad. I don’t know if they know about her and me but they know she’s gay and they’re cool with it. Why can’t you see that what we have is the same as what you and Lily have?”
“Because it’s not. It’s some sick twisted mind game that makes you think you’re in love. It’s NOT love Jessie. It’s wrong and I won’t stand for it. We’re done here! Go to your room,” Rick ordered, ending their conversation.
Jessie lowered her head and made her way to her room. Once there she threw herself on her bed and began to cry.
Grace smiled at her mom. “I’m gonna go to my room and write, ok?”
“Ok, I’ll come up when dinner’s ready,” Lily replied, entering the living room where Rick sat. “So, how’d it go?”
“Great!” Rick barked, still fairly angry.
Lily sighed. “What’s her punishment?”
“She’s grounded for a week and she’s never to see Katie ever again.”
“Rick, that’s not fair. Jessie and Katie love each other. You can’t keep them from seeing each other. They’ll find a way with or without your permission.”
“Life’s not fair Lily. I’ve already warned Jessie. If I catch her seeing Katie I’ll make sure they don’t see each other again.”
“What are you going to do? Beat her up?”
“No. I won’t stoop that far but I will get my point across. It’s not right Lil.”
“I don’t agree with you. Jessie has a right to date whoever she wants to, whether they’re Asian, African American, British, male or female. Love doesn’t see races or genders Rick. Love happens and if they’re happy then I think we should let them be happy.”
“I don’t care what you think. She’s my daughter and I won’t have her dating a girl.”
Lily sighed, defeated. “If you don’t get over this, you’re gonna lose her,” she whispered, standing and leaving.
Grace walked up the stairs with a smile until she heard sobbing. She knew where it was coming from so she headed straight for Jessie’s room. She knocked softly.
“Go away!” Jessie bawled.
“It’s Grace.” Hearing the door unlock Grace went in and closed the door behind her. “Jessie, what’s wrong?” she whispered, sitting beside her stepsister on the bed. All Jessie could do was cry so Grace took her into her arms and tried to calm her down. “Shhh, it’s ok. Everything will be ok Jess.”
Jessie’s sobs subsided as she sniffled, “no it’s not.”
“What do you mean?” Grace pried, caressing Jessie’s hair.
“Dad. . .h-he. . .he said I can’t see Katie anymore. Ever,” Jessie sobbed on Grace’s shoulder.
“Oh god, that’s horrible,” Grace whispered. She’d never thought Rick would be the type to be homophobic or anti-gay but apparently she didn’t know him as well as she thought she did. It kinda shocked her. She really didn’t know what to say next. Composing her thoughts, she spoke softly, “hey, we’ll find a way ok? Sarah and I will help in any way we can. We wanna see both of you happy. We’re all friends, remember? And friends always stick together, right?”
Jessie smiled through her tears. “Right. Hey Grace?”
“No prob little sis,” Grace whispered with a smile.
Long Arm of the Law
“Jessie, he can’t do this.”
“Unfortunately he can. The only safe way for me to talk to you is alone, where nobody can see us.”
“I’m not gonna lay down and take this. I’m gonna fight for you Jessie and I won’t give up. Not until he sees how much I love you.”
Jessie’s eyes were watering. Pulling Katie close she kissed her softly then sobbed on her shoulder. “Oh god I love you so much. Why can’t he see that?”
“I don’t know. He sees what he wants to see. Are you ready for a fight? Because I don’t think he’s gonna just give up.”
Jessie nuzzled her face to Katie’s neck. “You’re really gonna fight for me?”
“Of course. I love you Jessie and nobody’s gonna stop me from showing it. Not even your dad.”
“Then I’m with you til the end. Come hell or high water, I’m with you.”
A week later (Grace & Jessie are now off grounding)
The phone rang loudly and Grace leapt at it. “I got it!” She held the phone to her ear, “hello?”
“Hi, may I speak with Jessie.”
“Yeah,” Grace answered, heading upstairs. Keeping the phone close to her ear she crept up to Jessie’s room and handed her the phone.
Jessie mouthed a “thanks” then whispered into the phone, “hello?”
“Hey. How are you holding up?”
“I miss you. I’m going crazy over here.”
“I know how you feel. Sarah and Grace have a date tonight so maybe you can say you’re going with them and we could hang out at my house.”
“I’d like that.”
“I love you Jessie.”
“I love you too.”
“Jessie, get off the phone.”
“Get off the phone. I thought I made myself clear when I said you weren’t allowed to contact her.”
“I called her Mr. Sammler.”
“Then don’t call here ever again. Are we understood?”
“Look, you don’t scare me and you can’t keep me from seeing her.”
“Yes I can. Jessie, get off the phone now!”
“I love you Katie,” Jessie whispered before hanging up. “Grace, do you mind if I go to the movies with you and Sarah?” she asked with a wink.
Grace grinned. “Not at all.”
Walking downstairs they headed into the kitchen where Lily was putting the leftovers away. “Hi girls.”
“Hi Lily. I was wondering if you would mind if I went to the movies with Grace.”
Lily smiled. It was clever and to let them know their secret was safe with her she replied nonchalantly, “I don’t mind at all. Just be back before midnight, ok? Have fun.”
Jessie hugged her stepmom, whispering a thank you.
“You two better get going, the movie starts soon doesn’t it?” Lily asked, hinting that they should leave before Rick “the Destroyer” found out Jessie was going somewhere.
Grace nodded and they went out to her car. They made a quick stop by Sarah’s house to pick her up then stopped at Katie’s to drop Jessie off. “Hey, we’ll be back to pick you up at 11:30, ok?”
“Ok,” Jessie agreed, running to Katie’s door. Knocking gently, she didn’t have to wait long for somebody to answer the door. Katie threw the door open and pulled Jessie inside.
Hugging her tightly, she whispered, “I’m glad you made it Jess.”
“I had to see you,” Jessie whispered.
Katie smiled, leading the other girl up to her room. “It’s a little messy, I hope you don’t mind.”
“I came to see you, not your room silly.”
Lily sighed. The girls were home and in their rooms but earlier had been hell. When they’d come home Rick had a Mississippi fit. He’d started interrogating them until she stepped in and told him it could wait til mourning. He was starting to get out of hand but that wasn’t what bothered her at the moment. Lightly tapping on Jessie’s door she received a “come in” and walked in. “Jessie, can I talk to you?”
Jessie nodded and sat up in bed. “Is it about dad?”
“No actually,” Lily replied, sitting on the bed. “It’s about your mom.”
Jessie nodded, realizing for the first time that she hadn’t even told her mom about her and Katie. “I need to tell her.”
Lily nodded. “I already called her and she’s gonna pick you up after school tomorrow. I told her it was important and that you might want to stay the night. It’s your choice. I think a day away from your dad might be good for both of you.”
“Does he know yet?”
“No. I’ll tell him tomorrow morning.”
Lily smiled. “I’m going to help in any way I can but I can’t guarantee anything.”
“So Rick’s done a complete 180?”
“Something like that. Judy, I’m worried. I’m sure he wouldn’t hurt anyone but I was sure he was open-minded too. I told him that if he presses this he’s going to lose her but I don’t think he’s listening.”
“Men never listen. I don’t know what to say Lily. He’s made up his mind and I doubt there’s any way to change it. You’ll just have to let him find out the hard way.”
“Yeah, I suppose you’re right.”
“Mom, I need to tell you something.”
Karen nodded, motioning for her little girl to come sit next to her. “What is it honey?” she asked, worry straining her face. She knew that tone and it worried her.
“Mom I. . .I’m gay.”
“Thank God you’re not pregnant!” Karen sighed with relief, the worry slowly draining from her face. “So who’s the lucky girl?” she asked, very happy that her baby girl had finally fallen in love. The whole gay thing really didn’t faze her. It was a slight shock but it wasn’t like she had a say in it.
“Katie,” Jessie whispered with a blush.
Karen smiled. This was so sweet. Then something occurred to her. “Have you told your father yet?”
Jessie bowed her head.
“Oh no. What happened?”
“He banned me from ever speaking to Katie ever again.”
“That’s a little harsh.”
“Yeah. He thinks it’s wrong.”
“I see. Well, if you ever need to get away you know you’re always welcome here. It’s your home too.”
The next evening at the Sammler residence. . .
The phone rang and as usual Grace answered it, “hello?”
Grace headed up to Jessie’s room but was stopped dead in her tracks by Rick.
“If that’s Katie, Jessie can’t talk to her.”
“Would you quit being such a prick? She just. . .”
“Jessie isn’t talking to her and why are you helping them anyway? Is this some kinda of “dykes stick together” thing?”
Grace grinned. “Yeah it is! And I’m gonna continue helping her whether you like it or not Rick. Why is it so hard for you? Why do you have to be so fuckin pissy? Listen closely. If you don’t get your head out of your ass, you’re gonna lose Jessie for good.”
Rick angrily pushed Grace against the wall, ripping the phone from her hand. Backing away he growled into the phone, “Listen you little tramp. Don’t call here anymore or I’ll have you arrested for harassment. Do you hear me?” Hanging up the phone he glared at Grace. “Now it’s your turn to listen. If you stand in my way, you’ll go down with the rest of them.”
Katie approached the Sammler home, ready for battle. Knocking on the door, she waited. The door opened and Rick glared at her. “What do you want?” he growled.
“I came here to see Jessie.”
“You can’t see her.”
“Fine. Then I’ll wait out here until she comes out to see me,” Katie replied, returning to her car. Sitting on the hood, she waited.
About an hour later. . .
Grace glance outside. ‘OMG!’ she thought. Rick had told them it was nobody and ran off to make a phone call buthe’d lied. She ran up to Jessie’s room to tell her about Katie but Jessie was already climbing out the window. Jessie ran to Katie, hugging her tightly.
Seeing Jessie run out there Rick bolted out the door and toward the reunited couple. Rick tried to grab Jessie but Katie stepped between them. “Jessie, go inside NOW!” Rick ordered.
“She’s not going anywhere,” Katie growled like a pissed off wolf protecting her cubs.
Rick tried to grab for Jessie again but was pushed back by Katie. Another attempt was made but this time Katie pushed harder. “Get outta my way little girl,” Rick barked.
“No,” Katie hissed defiantly.
Rick grabbed Jessie by the wrist, pulling her toward him violently. “Ow,” Jessie yelped.
Katie’s eyes burned with fury. He was hurting her girl and she wouldn’t stand for it. Ripping his hand from Jessie’s wrist she threw him back. “Don’t touch her,” she warned.
Rick got up and tried again accept this time his face met Katie’s fist. “Back off,” she ordered, ignoring the pain in her hand.
Rick stood and smiled as the police car stopped in front of the house. Two officers stepped out of the car. He wiped away the blood on his lips and eyed the officers. “We got a call about trespassing,” one officer informed.
“Yeah and I’d like to add aggravated assault as well,” Rick confirmed.
The taller officer could see Rick’s busted lip and he looked at the two girls. Rick pointed Katie out and the officer took out his cuffs. “Katie Singer, you’re under arrest for trespassing and aggravated assault. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of law. . .”
As she was being cuffed and read her rights Katie screamed, “Jessie, I love you!”
Jessie kissed Katie on the lips, tears cascading down her face. “I love you too.”
One officer escorted the girl to the police car and helped her in as the other spoke with Rick. “Are you going to press charges?”
“Not this time but you guys will keep her overnight, right?”
“Unless somebody bails her out, yes.”
“Ok. No, I’m not pressing charges but I would like to get a restraining order.”
“You can come down to the station tomorrow and fill out the information,” the officer informed, getting in the car and driving away. Katie looked out the back window, tears streaming down her cheeks.
“Go to your room Jessie,” Rick commanded.
Jessie glared at her father. “I hate you! I’m never gonna speak to you again!” she cried, running into the house.
Katie raised her head. “Yeah?”
“You have a visitor,” the guard informed.
Katie stood as Judy walked in. “Judy?”
“Hey kiddo. Lily told me what happened. I called your parents and they said it would be better if I came to get you. We already posted bail for you. Your parents were pretty shaken up. They think it would be better if you stayed with me for a couple of days.”
“You know my parents?”
“Yeah. It’s a really long story. They’re kinda falling apart and they don’t want you to be there while it’s happening. I’ve got some of your stuff in my car and I’ll go pick up your school stuff and your car in the morning. You don’t mind staying with me, do you?”
“Not at all. Hey Judy?”
“Yeah?” Judy replied as the guard unlocked the cell.
“Anything to help.”
“I guess you know about me and Jessie huh?”
“Yeah. Lily told me about it. Don’t worry, I’m not another Rick. I think it’s sweet. C’mon, we better get back to my place before it gets too late.”
Reaping What You Sow
“And how old is your daughter?”
“We’ll need her signature for the restraining order to be properly enforced.”
“She won’t sign it.”
“Then I’m sorry to inform you of this but you can only get a restraining order for yourself and your home.”
“That’s fine,” Rick replied, signing the paper. Now Katie couldn’t come near the Sammler home or anywhere he was with Jessie.
“I got a restraining order on Katie.”
“I never thought you’d stoop so low dad,” Jessie growled as Eli and Grace walked into the kitchen.
“Have you told him?” Eli whispered to Jessie.
She shook her head. “No but I think now’s a good time. Did you wanna tell him?”
“Tell me what?” Rick demanded, losing his temper already.
“Dad, Jess and I have decided to go live with mom for a while.”
Rick froze. “What?”
“Yeah. We already have all of our stuff at her place but we wanted to tell you before we took off.”
“When. . .when are you leaving?”
“Tonight,” Jessie answered, standing to leave.
“You’ll visit, right?”
“Yeah. I’ll be by every few days but I don’t know about Jess,” Eli replied as Jessie and Grace walked out.
Lily walked in as Eli left to ask Jessie if she was ready. Lil sat next to Rick, “we need to talk.”
He knew that tone of voice and he would bet anything that his day was about to get even worse. “About what?” he sighed.
“About your temper. Grace told me about your discussion and your violent behavior. I’m willing to give you another chance but you have to show me that I’m making the right choice.”
“Or I’ll have to ask you to move out.”
“Well, I can’t promise anything,” he grumbled bitterly.
“Then I have to ask you to move out Rick. I can’t feel safe with you like this and in the same house with the kids,” Lily whispered sadly.
“Fine!” he barked, standing and knocking the chair down. Storming up to their room he began to pack. Could things get even worse?
“Katie, are you ready?”
“Yeah. Whenever you wanna take off we can.”
Judy looked over the young girl. “You look very nice.”
“Thanks. I figured since you and Karen are being so nice I should at least dress up for the occasion.”
Judy smiled. Katie was like the daughter she never had. She was so sweet and thankful. They’d had their moments but that was what made Judy like Katie even more. She knew the divorce would be hard for Katie and she didn’t even know who the young one would live with. She’d spoken with Katie’s dad and he’d said that if it was up to him he would turn custody over to Judy if she wanted. Of course she wanted it but she needed to know if Katie wanted it. That was the big question and tonight it would be confronted head on.
“Let’s go then,” Judy said as they headed out to her car.
When they arrived at the restaurant Karen and Jessie were already seated. Judy and Katie approached with the waiter. Karen and Judy began a conversation while Jessie and Katie hugged and whispered how much they missed each other.
Meanwhile. . .
“No way! Tad was kissing this really hot jock from CA. His name’s Josh Ford.”
“OMG! That is sooo juicy.”
As Sarah and a friend from school, May, walked on, a Toyota Land Cruiser plowed over a speed bump and past a stop sign. It headed straight for them, neither party knowing the other occupied the area. The cruiser smacked into one of the girls, stopping briefly at the collision.
May was horrified. That car had just hit Sarah! Shock lay upon her face as her eyes met the barer of angst. Him. She knew him. That cold face of his. She knew what pain this would bring but now was not a time to stand still. She had to get Sarah to the hospital. The Toyota sped off, not looking back on its victim.
“So Katie, when are you going back home?” Jessie asked softly.
“I. . .” Katie looked at Judy. “I don’t know,” she finished, bowing her head.
Judy glanced at Karen and received a nod. “Katie, um, I was wondering how you’d feel about living with me for a while.”
Katie nodded. “They don’t want me,” she whispered as tears welled up in her eyes.
“That’s not it. They’re having a lot of problems right now. . .”
“And their getting divorced?”
“Yeah,” Judy admitted sadly.
“Oh. I get it now. Why didn’t you tell me sooner?”
“I. . .” Judy bowed her head.
“She didn’t want you to worry about it. A divorce can be very hard on children,” Karen offered.
Jessie nodded, caressing Katie’s hand. “So what do her parents want?”
“They want me to take custody of Katie but I told them it was up to her.”
“Custody? Would that legally make me your kid?” Katie asked, swallowing the lump in her throat.
“No. I would be your legal guardian. I’d be taking care of you and you’d be under my parenting until you turn eighteen.”
Katie nodded. “And the other option?”
Karen touched Judy’s arm, answering for her, “foster care.”
The table was silent for a moment. Katie looked into Judy’s eyes, pain and anger slipping away as she smiled and spoke, “if you wouldn’t mind putting up with me I’d love to live with you.”
Judy smiled happily as a tear of joy fell from her eyes. “You know I’m here when you need me kiddo.”
“I know,” Katie replied. “These past few days you’ve treated me better than my parents have my whole life. You respect me and treat me like the young woman I am. I think this living arrangement is perfect.”
“I respect you because you respect me and your father knows that. He said that I know you better than they do and he thinks this is what’s best for you.”
“I have to agree with him. Judy, you’re a great mother figure and I don’t know anyone else in the world who’s better for the responsibility of parenthood, especially with a teenager,” Karen inserted.
Jessie smiled. “I think this is a great opportunity for both of you. I mean, you two are so alike.”
They all smiled. “Dessert?” Judy asked joyfully.
She cried over her friend’s body. Tubes strewn along the pale female kept her alive as the hospital staff ran dozens of tests to help the stabilized hit and run victim. Fumbling numbly with her cell phone she mumbled a name into it and it automatically dialed it.
“M-May I speak to G-Grace,” May sniffled.
“Uh, sure,” Lily whispered, very concerned. “Grace,” she called, summoning her daughter. “It’s for you. I think something’s wrong.”
Grace’s face scrunched in curiosity. Who would be calling her this time in the evening? Maybe it was Sarah. “Hello?”
“H-hi Grace. I-It’s May.”
“May? What’s up? Weren’t you and Sarah suppose to go see Lost and Delirious at the dollar movies?”
“Y-Yeah. Grace, it’s Sarah. He. . .she. . .come to the hospital.”
“Hospital? Why? What happened?” Grace replied frantically, worry now straining her face.
“J-Just get here s-s-soon. I’ll explain when y-you get here.”
“Ok, I’ll be there in ten,” Grace replied, hanging up. Grabbing her keys she looked at her mom. “Something happened to Sarah. She’s in the hospital. I have to go mom.”
“Sarah? What happened?”
“I. . .I don’t know yet but I’ll call you when I find out, ok?”
Lily sighed. “Alright. Please drive carefully.”
“I will,” Grace replied, rushing off.
Later at the hospital. . .
Grace had gone to the front desk and found out what room Sarah was in. Now she waited outside, unsure if she really wanted to go in. She was afraid. For once in her life she was afraid of losing and she didn’t know what she’d do if Sarah didn’t make it. Bowing her head she walked in, mortified by the state her lover was in. “What happened?” she whispered softly.
May wiped away her tears. “A. . .she was run over.”
Grace raised her head, her gloomy eyes meeting the pale body on the hospital bed. Rushing to the bed’s side she gently caressed her girls cheek. Tears fell from her eyes as her world began a downward spiral. She felt like her whole universe was fading to the dark side of the moon, like the only light in the darkness was fading. “Oh god baby. Don’t leave me. I love you so much. Please, baby please come back to me. I can’t live without you. I. . .” Grace laid her head on Sarah’s shoulder and began to sob.
May stood and touched Grace’s shoulder. “It gets worse,” she whispered morosely.
“How?” Grace whimpered, her bloodshot eyes peering at the girl. How could this get worse?
“I know who hit her,” May replied meekly.
Grace stood at attention, her eyes clearing as a searing anger began to fill her. “Who did this?”
“Rick,” May breathed bitterly.
Grace’s eyes burned with anger, her rage only held back by her thoughts of vengeance. She would get that son of a bitch and when she did she’d fry him!
The Reaper Knocks
A/N: Warning: ANGST! ANGST! ANGST! Did I mention ANGST! Ok, I’m done now.
Comments: I need feedback. Remember, FEED ME! Shout out to May (rinoaheartilly_88), David (DavedeShark), Todd (Tms) and all my other ppl. You know who you are! Enjoy!
“Grace? Thank god you called! What’s wrong?
“Rick strikes again,” the teen growled into the phone.
“What do you mean honey?”
“He. . .the fucker hit Sarah!” Grace nearly screamed, barely controlling her rage.
“He. . .WHAT?” Lily raised her voice slightly, anger swelling in her throat.
“She’s. . .they don’t know if she’s gonna make it mom. I’m calling the cops. He’s gonna get his.”
“I. . .I’ll be there as soon as I can.”
About an hour later the police were questioning May as Grace sat with her mom, Judy, Karen, Jessie and Katie. May bowed her head and sat away from the crowd, worried sick about her friend. Grace raised her head, then beckoned for May to join them. The girl sat beside Grace silently.
Katie was crying. She’d known Sarah for what seemed like forever and one slip up could take it all away. Clinging to Jessie, she nuzzled to her softly.
Karen’s gaze landed on May. “Did he mean to do it?”
May shifted uncomfortably. “I think he did. He saw her when he turned the corner but he didn’t stop,” she answered.
The short red haired officer approached. “We have Mr. Sammler in custody. He’s already pled guilty to hit and run charges as well as attempted vehicular manslaughter. We’ll assign him a lawyer in the morning and notify all of you when his court date is decided.”
“Thank you,” Judy whispered.
A week before Rick’s trial. . .
Grace sat beside Sarah’s bed. Sarah had been in a coma for weeks now but Grace almost never left her side. She had her schoolwork sent to her and she’d even gotten permission to stay at the hospital at night so long as she was quiet. She lived at the hospital six days a week. She’d only went home for showers & more clothes.
Katie had come by after school. She was still shaken and disturbed at her ex’s condition but she knew Grace would take care of Sarah. Jessie had come as well. They’d brought food and homework. After a brief chat they left to meet Karen for a shopping date.
She sat in silence, watching her angel sleep. Then an alarming sound blared through her mind. BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEP! Doctors and nurses rushed in, guiding Grace away from her love. She fought. She knew what was happening. This couldn’t happen, it just couldn’t!
A moment passed when silence set in. The medical staff bowed their heads, muttering the time of death as they slowly retreated from the room to let the trembling blonde say her goodbyes.
Grace was in shock. Sitting beside the still form of her only true love, the tears began to fall. Laying her head on Sarah’s chest she cried and clung to her. Memories flooded her. The still warm skin took her back to all of the times she spent with the other girl. The first time they kissed. So sweet, so passionate, so delicate and so loving. Kissing her had been a taste of heaven, a gift from those above. Nuzzling to the girls neck, she felt no beating heart. Sobbing, she remembered laying in bliss, tangled in Sarah’s limbs and scent as she memorized the easing pulse flowing through her lover. She always smelled like vanilla, felt like silk, tasted like ripe, sweet strawberries. Sarah’s love was life to the other teen. It was her will, her passion, her devotion, her existence. But that was now gone.
Closing her eyes, she found breathing was quite a task. She wanted to go with Sarah, wherever she was going. She couldn’t let go. Not now, not ever.
Lily found her heart racing, her eyes filling with tears. She looked at the others but they too were consumed by sorrow. Jessie held Katie tightly as the both cried. Karen, Judy and herself sat there in tears. They had arrived at the hospital when Dr. David Sutera had called to inform them of what had happened. Grace still lay with Sarah, trembling in denial and anguish. How would life resume as usual? If wouldn’t for they had all changed. They had all seen such a beautiful young girl taken from this world by one man’s animosity. One man’s madness.
Grace stumbled out of the room, steadying herself on the wall. She hadn’t let go, nor forgotten but she stood there to see justice done. “That. . .” she paused, “that mother fucker’s gonna pay,” she growled quietly.
The DA, Todd Simmons, briskly walked toward the standing group of women. Meeting Lily’s eyes, he spoke, “we got him.”
Lily nodded. “His sentence?”
Grace slipped away from the crowd while the others weren’t looking. “The hearing for his sentencing will be in about a month but I can guarantee he’ll get no less than life. The charges have very strict penalties, especially vehicular manslaughter.”
“He plead guilty?” Judy asked.
“Yes. The charges we originally pressed against him were partially void after Sarah’s death. We informed the judge of the actions following the hit and run. He allowed the defense a moment to converse but they still plead guilty.”
“Thank you,” Karen whispered as Sarah’s parents left. Looking around she did a double take. “Where’s Grace?” she asked, not seeing the teen with her daughter and Katie.
Jessie looked around. “I. . .she was right here. . .”
Grace stood atop the tall building. Whispering to the sky, she smiled. Standing, she headed home. Arriving there she knew she didn’t have much time. They would be looking for her soon. She hurried into the bathroom, running sweltering hot water in the sink. Taking Sarah’s obsidian jeweled dagger from her pocket, she took a breath. She pressed the hard metal into her left wrist, making a big gash as she brought it down her skin. She winced, her grip on the dagger more stern now. Slicing her other wrist open she pushed her bleeding wrists into the water. Pulling back, her wrists bled more. Her veins were open and blood was flowing smoothly as she passed out.
About an hour later. . .
Jessie giggled as she opened the bathroom door. Suddenly she froze. A shriek of pure horror echoed throughout the house.
Karen approached Lily as Judy left. “All the kids are in bed,” she whispered.
Lily trembled as she heard the other woman’s words cut through her numb mind. Raising her eyes she whispered, “why?”
Karen shook her head. “I don’t know.” She took the bawling woman in her arms, comforting her softly. Lily looked into Karen’s eyes and kissed her softly. Laying her head on the other woman’s shoulder, her tears subsided. “She’s with Sarah now,” Karen whispered.
“We have to tell them eventually Lil.”
“When the time is right. We all need to mourn right now.”
Karen smiled, leading Lily upstairs.
A few months later, after graduation. . .
Jessie walked silently, her footsteps light on the hot summer Earth. She knelt beside a grave, her lady love doing the same beside her. Katie nodded. They placed the blood red roses on the graves before them, whispering in unison, “Like a falcon you did fly. Far away and into the sky. We see you dance, we see you play, we see you every single day. We hear your voices loud and clear, just know that we still hold you dear.”
We smile as we look down at them. They’ve come so far since we left. Mom and Karen finally came out but nobody really cared. Jessie and Katie are living together at Karen’s house with Eli. They come to visit every week or so. I wonder if they can hear us think. Jessie, if you can hear me, Sarah and I are happy and we can hear you.
Jessie looked up to the sky, smiling brightly. Taking Katie’s hand she whispered, still watching the sky, “they can hear us.”
~<>~ The End ~<>~
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