Read Part Two Here
Taylor walked to her car slowly, dreading going home. Her day had not gone as horribly as she had imagined. For the most part people left her alone ,and she thankfully saw no sign of her stupid ex boyfriend. She did not want to be at school, but she did not want to be at home either. She just wanted to be back in Seattle. She knew her parents would ask a million questions about her first day back, and her grandfather would be drunk and slipping Jesus into the conversation every chance he got.
She leaned against her car and let out a large sigh.
“When will my life be normal?”
“I don’t know babe, but would you really want normal?” Taylor looked up to see Dylan leaning against her car as if he belonged there.
“What the hell Dylan!”
“I’m sorry, I know I just … Sorry” Dylan looked at his feet. Taylor took a moment to collect her thoughts. This was not what she expected. She thought he would be just like Katherine. Smug and hell bent on making her miserable. But, he was sorry. She looked him up and down and realized he had changed a lot. He wasn’t the skinny kid with freckles anymore. Sure he still had freckles, but he was nearly six feet tall and clearly worked out. He ran his hands through his sandy blonde hair and looked into her eyes with hope.
“I…” Taylor started to speak.
“No, don’t… let me talk first. I’m sorry about what happened two years ago. She cornered me in that classroom, telling me stories about how you were going to break up with me. I don’t know what happened, and then she was kissing me. Hell, I was 14, and a pretty girl was kissing me. I should have stopped, but I just couldn’t. And then you were gone. I couldn’t call you; I didn’t even have your address.” He looked down at his feet again as he kicked rocks across the parking lot.
“I’m sorry for leaving like that. I was just so heartbroken. I thought you… I don’t know what I thought.” She looked up at the clouds passing in the sky, hoping they would have some answers.
“Can we start over? As friends? I would really like that,” Dylan spoke quietly.
“Ok,” said Taylor. She reached out to shake his hand, but he grabbed in her a giant hug and swung her around.
“I’ve missed you Tay.” He snuggled her into him tighter.
“I’ve missed you too D.” Taylor glanced at the large clock on the back of the school. “Shit, I have to go get my sister. I can’t be late.”
“Why don’t I come with you? Unless you think your sister hates me now too?” She was struggling to find her keys in her purse and thought, what the hell, why not?
“Sure, she might like to see you. If you can get her to smile, you can stay for dinner,” she laughed as a big smile came over his face.
As they drove to Kate’s School, Dylan filled Taylor in on the gossip from the past two years. His parents had gotten divorced last summer. Taylor winced at the thought that he had to go through that alone, but he didn’t seem upset. Dylan was happier now that his parents were done arguing, plus he noted it meant his mom lived next door to her grandparents, so he could bother her all the time. Great, she thought, no wonder he had no problem driving home with me.
The school drama was the same as it was when she left, except Katherine had risen to the top of the mean girl group and was a force to be reckoned with. Not even the teachers attempted to reign her in. Taylor quietly wondered how brutal it would get when Katherine realized her and Dylan were friendly again. And, as if on cue, Dylan spoke up.
“Don’t worry about her messing with you. I’m the quarterback of the football team, and I am untouchable by her posse or they would lose social status. So, by proxy, if they mess with you ,they will lose social status. I’ll protect you.”
“Dylan, I don’t need someone to protect me. I can handle myself.” Dylan laughed and patted the top of her head.
“Whatever you say, Babe.”
“STOP CALLING ME BABE!”
At this point Dylan was rolling around in his seat with laughter. She couldn’t help but to laugh herself. God, she had missed his friendship, more than she realized.
They pulled up to Kate’s school and saw her sitting on the curb biting her finger nails. She didn’t seem to notice they had pulled up next to her. Taylor went to open her door and Dylan grabbed her arm and shook his head no. He slowing opened his door and snuck up behind Kate. All Taylor could think was how much trouble for this she would be in when she got home. He snuck up behind her, scooping her up in his arms and shouted.
“My KatieBear! What have they done with you? You are too grown up to be my KatieBear.” He swung her around and set her down. She looked up at him as though she were about to cry. A look of panic hit Dylan’s eyes as he glanced from Kate to Taylor. But, before he could say anything else, she hugged him. Relief flushed across their faces.
“How did you get here, D? How did you know I was here?”
“I tricked your sister into bringing me to come get you, naturally.” He smiled and waved at Taylor. Kate glanced up at her sister. She noticed she was smiling in a way she hadn’t seen her smile in a long time. Maybe things would be okay again. Just maybe.