October 20, 1995
Thank you for being here for me to talk to over the past year. You're the only friend I have. And I have some good and bad news. The bad news is that I'm no longer going to write to you. But the good news is that I'm coming to see you soon. I just can't take it here anymore and I don't have anywhere else to go. You're the only one that has listened to me and I want to be with you now. But I need to take care of a few things and then I'll be there. See you soon.
Present 1999 time.
"Hey Meghann over here!" I yelled. Meghann saw me and waved when she heard my loud voice over everyone. It was Saturday, and I was standing in the middle of a crowd of people at the airport unable to get to her at the time.
Meghann stood about 5'3", very slim with chin length blonde hair. She is visiting me in Washington DC from Orlando for her spring break. She is a senior in high school while I was going to attend college in the fall. She was wearing her favorite dark denim Lucky jeans with a dark green sweater. She looked just like I remembered her from last summer except her hair was different.
"Wow, hun you look great! And I love your hair. When did you get it cut? Why didn't you tell me?" I asked giving her a quick hug.
"Thanks, I actually did it myself last night, and look!" She then lifted up her shirt a bit to show me her new belly button ring.
"WOW! I love it." I said still amazed at the sight of her. "So should we go and get your luggage or are we just going to stand here?"
"Alright then. Let's go!" She said with a laugh.
We quickly found her luggage and went to find the car. I seem to always forget where I park, but we eventually found it.
As we drove to my apartment to change and drop off Meghann's stuff before heading out to do some shopping we talked about our plans for the week. Meghann had mentioned to me earlier that she wanted to introduce me to some of her friends that were going to be in town for a few days this week. After she told me they were guys I became more interested, as usual, and the questions started pouring out.
"So are they hot? Any of them single? How many of them are there again....."
I was cut off by Meghann talking over me, "Calm down would you! You'll find out soon enough, alright?"
And she left it at that. I still didn't know when I was going to meet them, how many there were, what I should wear. But I did know from the tone in Meghann's voice that they were all hot and very much single. That's what I love about her. We go all the way back to junior high. We know each other so well just by the tone of our voices and expressions on our faces.
While I was thinking about that I heard Meghann laugh at herself because she knew what I was thinking. I just gave her a dirty look as I pulled into my parking space in front of my apartment.
"We're here!" I yelled because by this time Meghann had found my radio and turned the volume up as loud as it would go and she was singing along with it..."how does it feel, To treat me like you do....." It was the new song from Orgy called "Blue Monday" which was one of our favorites right now, but I turned off the car right in the middle of her singing and told her we were home again.
"Alright! It's about time. I'm hungry!" She exclaimed in an annoyed tone.
"Damn! Girl you're always hungry. But you're just lucky that I love you so much, because I went shopping for food just for you yesterday. And I even made you a German chocolate cake with out the icing last night. There's also a wide variety of different kinds of chocolate snacks too. So it'll be like you're at home." I told her as I was unlocking the door to my apartment that I shared with a college student. Her name is Marie but we hardly ever see each other because she works full time at the coffee shop on the corner to pay for college. I am employed at the 70's diner downtown but I have the week off to spend with Meghann.
When I got the door unlocked Meghann ran in before me to get to the cake I guess. I just laughed as I started to pick up some of her bags to take inside. When I was coming back out to get the rest the landlord of our floor stopped me.
"Hey Amy do you have a minute? I don't have much time because I have to get to a class soon but I wanted to let you know that the old Chasez house behind the building, you know which one I'm talking about?" He asked.
I shook my head yes.
He continued, "Well I just heard that they are going to sell it and the buyers want it all cleaned out before they move in. So I was told to let everyone on the floor know that they have today and tomorrow to take whatever they would like from the house. The new people are moving in on Monday and you're the first person that I've told. I'll let the others know later on when I get home from my class but can you please let Marie know as soon as you see her? I know that she could use some of the things from their house."
I immediately started smiling. "I sure will Adam. And thanks for letting me know." I said. He smiled and told me the house would be unlocked until he got back. I thanked him again and we said our good-byes.
PART TWO As I walked into my apartment I found Meghann with half of the cake on a plate and a large glass of milk watching TV in the den. She knew that something was up when she saw my face. I quickly retold her what Adam told me. Then I explained why I was so excited about it.
"You see, the Chasez's are very well respected people in this town. About three or four years ago something terrible happened to their son Josh and they have been totally devastated ever since. I think that they decided to move out of the house to get away from everything that reminded them of Josh. From what I've heard they live on a small ranch outside Orlando."
"What happened to him?" she asked giving me her full attention.
"I'll explain on the way. Let's go!" I said as I grabbed her arm and pulled her to the door. I knew she wanted to know about their son and I would tell her but I wanted to be in that house. Mr. and Mrs. Chasez were the first people to welcome me to the neighbor hood. They invited me to dinner at their house the first night that I was in town. Ever since that night I have kept in touch with them and they still invited me over to have a 'decent home cooked meal'. After the first few months of living in my apartment I became a regular in the Chasez household. Mr. and Mrs. Chasez became like second parents to me. I loved them like I loved my own parents. They were wonderful to me. I just didn't understand how such a thing could have happened to Josh. It didn't make sense.
As we got out of the elevator and started outside Meghann broke the silence with her wondering question. "So...what happened!?" She said getting kind of upset that I was keeping it from her.
"Well all that I know is that in October, I think, of '95 Josh just disappeared. They don't know if he was kidnapped, ran away or if he's even alive anymore. It's very sad, what happened."
Meghann just stood in silence and stared at the huge house as we approached it. We stood outside for a few minutes just looking at the house. It was an amazing site. You have to wonder why anyone would ever want to leave this place. It's so beautiful.
"Well, what are we waiting for?" Meghann asked as she waited for me to enter the house first.
I stepped up onto the front steps and grabbed ahold of the doorknob. I slowly turned it and pushed it open. I took a deep breath in as I entered the house. I could still smell the scent of Mrs. Chasez's homemade bread cooking and taste the fresh squeezed lemonade that she had made for me. A tear rolled down my cheek as I remember the sweet face of the dear older lady. I really missed her.
"I'm going to start upstairs. I think that I would like to see what Josh's room looked like." I said as I slowly started walking upstairs. I had only been in the downstairs in the many times I had been in the house so I didn't really get to see the rest or learn what Josh was like. As I was walking up the stairs, I stopped to gaze at some of the family pictures and other memorabilia that was on the walls. When I got to the last one I stopped to look longer at it. I then realized that Meghann was following me. I reached up to take the picture off the wall. It was a family picture of Mr. and Mrs. Chasez. I never understood why they took down all the pictures of Josh. They had mentioned before that they had two other kids but I never found out their names or even saw a picture of them. I have never seen a picture of Josh either.
I walked on down the hallway to the first room I got to. The wooden nameplate on the door said Josh. I drew in a deep breath and confidently opened the door and walked in. It was very dark in the room. The blinds were pulled on the windows. Meghann had followed me into the room and had found the light switch for me. When she turned it on we both gasped at the same time. There were white sheets over all of the furniture and things were very dusty. You could tell that the room had not been entered in a long time. I took off the closest sheet to me. Underneath was a dresser. The things that I figured went on top of it were in a box that was sitting on the floor beside it. I quickly looked through some of it but lost interest in it. I hesitated before pulling open a dresser drawer. I felt kind of embarrassed going through Josh's dresser. Inside the first drawer I found some socks and boxers. I didn't move anything after I realized what was in the drawer. But as I went to close it something got stuck. I reopened the drawer and tried again and it still wouldn't close all the way. So I took the drawer all the way out to see what the problem was. I examined the drawer and nothing seemed to be the matter. So I tried the hole where I had taken the drawer. I felt around inside and found something taped to the top of the drawer case. I had to pull a few times before it finally fell off. It was a dark blue book. I turned it over and my heart almost stopped when I read the word diary across the top. I slowly sat down on the floor. I sat there for what seemed like hours just running my fingers across the word diary. By this time Meghann had seen me sitting there and came over to see what it was I had. She peered over my shoulder and when she realized what it was she sat down next to me. We both looked at each other and nodded in agreement that we would read it. I mean, if it was hidden like that since Josh disappeared then it might be a clue to help us find him now if he's still alive.
I took a deep breath and opened the book. It was somewhere in the middle. The date was August 8th, 1995. I read it out loud.
Ya know it's my 17th birthday and my parents didn't even say one word to me all day. I didn't get a hello or a goodbye. Nothing. I was really disappointed. I haven't gotten one thing from anyone for today. It's supposed to be a special day for me right? I mean it's my birthday. But I guess that if I don't have any friends then I won't be getting any presents from anyone from school. Maybe I should just pack up and leave. What do I have here that will make me stay? My parents have made it perfectly clear that their business is more important than me and how I feel. I'm no longer needed here. Maybe if I go somewhere else I can make some friends and be able to sing. I don't like going to this fancy private school anymore. They don't have anything in the music department. My parents didn't listen to me when I asked to be enrolled in a public school. My dad wants me to go to college and take over the family business when he retires. But I want to sing, not make furniture for the rest of my life. But he just doesn't understand that. No one understands that. No one ever will. I'll probably never make it anyhow. I should just run away and forget everyone here. I just don't know what I'm going to do anymore.
Meghann and I were in tears when I finished reading it. I just put my head in my hands and stayed like that for the longest time. I wasn't sure how long I had been like that but after awhile I knew that I had to get out of that house. I quickly stood up and ran out of the room. A million thoughts were running through my mind at the time. But the one that stood out the most was that I needed some fresh air. I didn't stop running until I got to the small park near the Chasez house. I collapsed into an unoccupied swing and continued to sob. Meghann caught up with me a few seconds afterwards. She sat down next to me. We sat there in silence. Neither of us dared to talk, for we feared we might say the wrong thing.
"I want to go back to my room," I said through tears. I didn't know what else to say and I didn't want to talk about Josh's diary entry that we had just read. I just wanted to watch some TV and rest for the remainder of the night. Meghann shook her head in agreement. We stood up slowly and walked home in silence. We watched old movies and at popcorn and crispy M&M's for the rest of the night.
Josh! Josh! Where are you? Grab my hand! Josh don't leave me! JOSH!
"Amy! Amy! Wake up!" Meghann screamed in my face while shaking me.
I bolted upright drenched in sweat and unbelievably cold all over. I felt Meghann beside me. I turned and she handed me a glass of water. I graciously excepted it. While I started drinking it, everything from my dream came back to me. Meghann just sat on the edge of my bed waiting for me to talk.
"Oh Meghann it was awful. I was with Josh but it wasn't really Josh. I mean it was Josh but I couldn't see him. He was there and everything but I can't remember what he looked like. While I was with them he was showing me around his house. We were still downstairs when the living room floor cracked down the middle and Josh fell into this big pool of black water. Then all of a sudden it was dark everywhere around me. I tried to reach Josh but I didn't know where he was. I could hear him screaming for me to help him and after awhile his voice faded away until I could barely hear him. And then you woke me up." I told her. By this time I was crying again and so was Meghann. I glanced at the clock and saw that it was a little after 5:30 so I decided to get up and take a hot shower before Meghann and I went shopping.
When I got out of the shower Meghann already had some hot cocoa waiting for me with some scrambled eggs. She then took her shower and we got ready together to go out.
On the way to the mall we avoided the topic of conversation about Josh's diary. We both knew we wanted to talk about it and about what was written but we just simply avoided it. I knew that it would come up later though. I think that Meghann knew it to. It was still fresh in our minds and it was all we could think about while going shopping.
I had been thinking about Josh all afternoon until Meghann interrupted my thoughts with a single question that reminded me of something that I had totally forgotten about. "So what kind of an outfit are you going to get to wear when you meet my friends this evening?"
"Oh no! It's this evening? I had totally forgotten about that! You're going to have to help me pick out something since I don't have any idea what type of people that I am meeting or where I'm going to meet them. Should I get something trendy yet classic or something athletic yet..."
"God just shut up! Let's go to Hot Topic and get you some new plaid pants. I think that they'll like those. And maybe a new sweater."
I paid for the items that I bought and Meghann and I left to go look for something to drink. When we sat down Meghann was the one to bring up the subject of the diary.
"I have something to tell you," she started. "After you ran out of the Chasez house I took the diary with me. I hid it in the bushes and went and picked it up when you took your shower this morning. I didn't know if you would get mad if I took it so I hid it last night so I could get it later. I wanted to read more but I didn't want to read it with out you. I don't think that I can read it by myself." Meghann paused before continuing with her last question. "Will you read it with me?"
I took my time in answering. I already knew what the answer was and so did Meghann. I wanted to read it. "I'll read it with you later tonight after we get back from dinner. I don't want to worry about it right now. I'm trying to forget it so I can have fun today. And right now we need to go and find me a new CD. I haven't bought a new one in over a week, and I've been going absolutely insane!" I told Meghann as I got up.
"Man girl you and your stupid CD obsession! Sam Goody or On Cue?" She asked me while getting up to follow.
"Let's check out Sam Goody since it's right here in the mall then we can hit On Cue later if we don't find anything here. Is there anywhere else that you want to go before we leave?"
"Yeah I want to get some blue M&M's from Mr. Bulky first."
"Oh man! Some Jelly Belly's sound really good right now too!" I said as we headed towards the store.
"Man these things are the best on earth." I said as I popped a few jellybeans in my mouth after leaving the store. I then put a handful in my pocket and then put the rest of the bag in my larger bag from Hot Topic that had my new outfit for the night in it.
"So what CD are you looking for? Anything in particular?" Meghann asked with a little bit of a hinting tone in her voice.
"What would you like to recommend to me today?" I asked
"Well first let's just go to On Cue because I know that they will have it there plus I like that store better than Sam Goody."
"Alright, we need to find the car first though." I said as we headed towards the exit.
"So what CD do you want me to get? I already have one picked out that I want so I'll probably just get both." I said to Meghann. We had been in On Cue for about 25 minutes and she still hadn't shown me the CD.
"Alright follow me, it's over here." She said as she started towards the front of the store. I followed a few feet behind, looking around at some of the CD's on either side of me.
"I'm going to have to come back here in a few days." I thought to myself as I stuck my hand in my pocket for some more jellybeans.
"Here it is. I have this one at home. It's one of my favorites and I think that you'll like it too," she said as she handed me a CD from the rack.
I looked over it for a few seconds. "'N Sync?" I asked. "Who are they?"
PART FIVE "One of the most newest most hottest boy bands around and from Orlando." Meghann said with a smile. "And I this one is mine! So stay away from him, alright?" She informed me as she pointed to the blonde one that was second from the right. "His name is Justin. Isn't he hot?"
I took a few seconds to look over the five guys on the cover before answering her. "I like this one the best." I said pointing to the guy in the middle.
"Oh him? That's JC. He's from DC too actually. MAN! I can't believe you didn't know who they were! You're like this music freak and you didn't know who they were! Do I even know you?
"Look, just shut up! I don't want to hear it right now. And just to make you happy I'll buy it. Well, and because I think they're cute. But they better be good or you owe me for this." I told Meghann as I paid for my CDs.
"You won't regret it, I promise," she told me as we walked out of the store. "Let's listen to it on the way home." She suggested as she took the bag from me as I got in the car. She found her seat and quickly opened the CD and put it in the CD player. Then she started messing with the numbers on the CD so it didn't start on number one.
"Hey! Just leave it on number one and we'll go from there!" I yelled. I didn't like it when people played with my music. I wanted to start from the beginning of the CD.
"No shorty, you have to hear JC sing first. Then you'll get hooked, I swear." She said as she finished messing with the CD player and turned up the volume so I could hear better.
'More precious than any diamond or pearl you broke the mold when you came in this world...'
"Isn't he beautiful?" Meghann said in a dreamy voice. "Now listen to Justin."
'Can this be true tell me can this be real how can I put into words what I feel..."
"I like it a lot." I said after a few songs had been played. By this time we were almost back to my apartment. "Bring this CD in with you so we can listen to it while we get ready for tonight." I told Meghann as I got out of the car to get my bags from the trunk.
"I think that I'm going to rewash my hair so that I can do it over again before tonight because there isn't much curl left in it now. Actually I'm just going to take another shower so I know I'm totally fresh." I told Meghann as I went into the bathroom. I walked out about 30 minutes later with my hot roller still in my hair. I wanted to leave them in a little longer so that I knew my hair would look good all night. Meghann gave me a weird look when she saw me. She had found a comfortable place on the couch and was watching TV.
"You haven't changed a bit have you?" She asked me.
"Actually I have. These are new rollers." I said sarcastically.
"We still have two hours before we go out for dinner. You want me to go pick up a movie to watch in the mean time because there isn't anything on TV?" Meghann asked me.
"Sure, my keys are on the table. Do you need some money for it?" I asked as she got up from the couch.
"No, that's alright. I think I have enough," she told me as she walked out the door.
The video store was only a few blocks from the apartment building so I knew that she would be back soon. In the mean time I picked up the remote and channel surfed. I was really glad that she suggested getting a movie because there was nothing on.
'I hope she got something good,' I thought as I heard the door close.
"Alright! I'm back!" Meghann said with a smile as she handed me my keys. "I got a movie that will take our minds off Josh and get us ready for tonight."
"Great! So what did you get?" I asked trying to get the sack from her.
"Dude, I mean shorty, you're just going to have to wait! I also stopped and bought us two bottles of Pepsi. I've only been here for one night and I'm already sick of your milk and OJ. It's time you live life on the edge and have something besides healthy stuff to drink." She said as she pulled out a bottle of Pepsi for me and one for her.
"Um, okay thanks," I said uneasily as I took the bottle.
"Yeah dude, no problem!" Meghann said as she put the video in the VCR.
The movie ended up being Scream which was one of the many movies that we had watched at least a dozen times together. It didn't do a very good job of getting my mind off Josh and it only made me more nervous and anxious about dinner that night. But I had to love Meghann for trying. I just would have rather seen something new so I could pay more attention to it. My mind kept wondering from the movie to Josh and his diary. A million things would run through my mind each time I remembered the entry we read. I wondered why Josh felt like he did and why he wasn't found if he did run away. I wondered where Meghann had put the diary and if we would really read it after dinner. I knew I wouldn't forget about saying that I would read it with Meghann tonight but if she forgot then I surely wasn't going to mention it to her. But I knew I couldn't put it off forever, but I would try to as long as possible. My heart went out to the Chasez's as they still grieved over their son's disappearance. If there was something I could do to help them then I was going to do it. If it meant reading Josh's diary then I would do it.
"Hello?" Meghann said as she picked up the phone.
I returned my thoughts to planet Earth as I listened to her conversation.
"Oh, we were just watching a movie but it's almost over and we've seen it about a million times before. So just give us about ten minutes to change and then we'll be down." She said into the phone. She paused for the reply before finishing and then hanging up. "Alright!" She laughed, "we'll be down in a little bit. Peace out."
"What was that all about?" I asked sitting up and turning off the TV.
"Well, that was one of the guys. They're sending a limo that will take us to them, and it'll be here in about ten minutes so we better hurry."
I had my new outfit already layed out for the night and all I had to do was put it on and take out my hot rollers. I was ready to go in about five minutes. It took Meghann the whole ten minutes and then some before we finally left my apartment.
"I can't believe that it took you longer than me to get ready when you've already met these guys before. Is there something that you're not telling me? I mean I know you too well and you don't take that long in getting ready and care so much about what you look like if you were only friends with these guys. So what is it that you've been keeping from me?" I asked as we got into the limo.
"Good evening Meghann. How've you been? I haven't seen you in awhile. Are you staying out of trouble?" I heard the limo driver ask when we sat down.
"Hey Jonathon. I'm doing great and I'm trying my best about being good for a change. So where are you taking us? Or are you sworn to secrecy?" Meghann replied back.
"I'm sorry hun but you'll have to wait and find out. We'll be there shortly." he said as we pulled away from my apartment building.
"Okay now I know that you're keeping something from me and I want to know right now." I said as I crossed my arms over my chest.
"Well I was going to tell you later on tonight after we got home from dinner but this way when we get there we won't have to hide it from you all night." Meghann told me. She paused before finishing the rest. "The truth is, I'm seeing one of the guys that we are meeting for dinner tonight. Are you happy now?"
"Wow, hun that's great! I'm glad that you're so happy because I know that if you weren't happy you wouldn't have taken so long in getting ready. So what's his name?" I asked.
"Justin," she replied. "You'll like him."
That was all that was said during the thirty minute drive to our meeting place. I was so excited about meeting these guys and not because they were cute, but in the mine months that I had been living in DC I hadn't met that many people except the ones that lived in my apartment building and the ones that I worked with. Though once I start college this fall I would meet a lot of people.
"Have a good evening you two," Jonathon told us as we got out at our destination. It was a beautiful ranch in the country. Horses roamed in the pastures nearby and trees were everywhere! I couldn't believe how many trees there were. I had forgotten what it was like to have trees around since I lived in the city now. It was gorgeous. I couldn't wait to see the inside.
"The guests have arrived!" I heard someone call out when we walked in the house. Then a guy appeared before me and I swear I had seen him somewhere but I wasn't sure where.
"Hey Meghann! I've missed you so much babe!" The mystry guy said to her as he embraced her in a hug. Then he turned to me and shook my hand. "Hello, I'm Chris," he said.
"Hi, I'm Amy. Nice to meet you." I responded.
"Where's everyone else?" Meghann asked. "Well Justin is getting ready upstairs and the rest of the guys are in the back by the pool," Chris replied showing us the way outside.
I walked behind Meghann and Chris on the way to the back of the house while I looked around on the inside. It was very beautiful. I was still trying to take in the whole house when Meghann interrupted my train of thoughts.
"Amy? Hey!" She yelled at me to get my attention. "Now you have to promise that when we go outside that you won't freak out on me. Can you do that?" She asked.
"Why do I have to promise for?" I asked confused.
"Just do it!" She hissed.
"Okay! I promise!" I said. "Alright let's go. Now remember you promised." She said as she opened the door to the outside. 'Oh my God!' I thought as my heart stopped in my chest. I couldn't believe who it was.
"Amy, I would like to introduce you to JC." She said slowly letting me digest everything.
At this time I was so mad at Meghann for having me get their CD. I would have been so much more comfortable not knowing who they were before I met them. I was in so much shock that I couldn't speak. I had to say something though. I couldn't just stand there like an idiot. I was glad when JC came over to me from his spot on a picnic table to shake my hand.
"Hello Amy. It's nice to meet you finally." He said with a smile.
"What do you mean finally?" I asked turning my head to glare at Meghann who was standing nearby. She pretended like she hadn't heard me.
"Meghann has told us all about you before today. I hope that you're not mad at her. She didn't say anything bad. Trust me, it was all good." He said still holding onto my hand.
"That's good. I can't be mad at Meghann anyhow. It wouldn't last very long if I was. I'm not the type to hold a grudge for very long." I said as I took my hand back. I felt like such a fool. I was rambling and JC probably already thought I was a dork. I would make it up though.
"Why don't you come over and sit down? The food won't be ready for awhile." JC told me as he pointed to the picnic table that he occupied earlier. It would give us a chance to be alone which was a good sign.
"So whose place is this?" I asked as I sat down across from JC.
"Actually, it's Joey's aunt and uncle's ranch. We just decided to come here to get away from the city and because it wasn't that far away for you guys either." He explained.
"I think it's very beautiful. Well what I've seen of it anyway." I said.
"Would you like the grand tour?" He asked me with a little hinting in his voice.
"Sure! I'd love to. Are you going to be my tour guide? You're not going to get me lost are you?" I asked questionably.
"Yes, I'll show you around and no I won't get you lost. I've been here a million times before." He said putting his arm on my shoulder and leading me off towards the pool house. "This is where Lance and I are staying for the night. The other guys get to stay in the main house. But I'm not complaining about anything. At least I get the better bed and the game room."
We walked around the barns and he told me about the horses and asked me if I had ever rode before. Of course I had I told him. He said that we would go riding later that evening but for the moment we had better get back and get some food before it's all gone.
Meghann smiled as we walked back up to the house where everyone was already enjoying their meal. "Did you two have fun?" She asked.
I didn't answer her as JC and I got some plates and dug into what was left of the food. Someone had fixed a whole barbecue. There was plenty of food and there would be for quite a while. During the meal I met Lance, Joey and Meghann's boyfriend, Justin. I couldn't believe how much better they looked in person than on their CD cover. I was still mad at Meghann for showing me that CD. That was one grudge that would take me awhile to get over. She knew that I was mad though. I had every right to be, but she also knew that I was thanking her with all my heart for introducing me to them. I will be thanking her for a long time, and there will be some more people that will get added to that list later too. "Who's up for some horse back riding?" JC asked while smiling at me.
We had long finished our meal and had been talking about everyone's favorite music for the last hour. It was quite an interesting conversation. Everyone's style was so different yet very much alike. It was during this time that I revealed that I had bought their CD earlier that day. I told them about the whole situation and how I'm music crazy and go on CD shopping sprees instead of normal college girls that go out and buy clothes all the time. I explained that Meghann recommended the CD to me and before today I had never heard of them. I left out the part about having a crush on JC but I think that everyone could tell I do. I didn't care. If they didn't know now they would probably soon find out. Meghann can't keep something like this a secret from any of them for very long, especially JC. He would know as soon as she got a chance to be alone with him or once I wasn't around so she wouldn't embarrass him. I was sure that Justin already knew.
"I'm ready to go!" I said as I got up to throw away my trash. Only Meghann and Justin were coming with us. I thought that was rather strange.
"Aren't you guys coming? It won't be the same with out all of us." I whined hoping they would decide to come.
"No, that's okay. You guys go ahead. We're going to stay here and get things cleaned up and ready for the next thing on the agenda." Lance told me with a sly smile.
"What's that supposed to mean?" I asked.
"Nothing, I can't say. You better go before they leave you though." He said pointing at the others who were already starting towards the stables.
When I finally caught up with everyone, I stopped and walked beside JC who was walking behind Meghann and Justin. When he saw me he put his arm around me.
"You're really going to love this. There's a place that I want to show you too. Just don't let me forget about it, okay?" He asked.
"Why would you forget?"
"Well, just in case." He said a little embarrassed.
The barn that the horses were kept in was very clean and meticulous. It was almost as beautiful as the house.
"Alright, which one would you like to ride for the night?" JC asked me, interrupting my thoughts. Justin was helping Meghann further down the aisle.
I wasn't sure which one I wanted. They were all so gorgeous I wasn't sure which one to pick. "Will you pick for me? I don't know which one I want." I said.
"Sure, It'll be my pleasure." He said with a smile as he walked down the aisle looking at each horse carefully. He did this for a few minutes making sure to check out every horse before he told me he had made a final decision. "Here we go. I think that you will look beautiful on him," he said showing me a very handsome chestnut stallion.
"What about with out him? What will I look like then?" I quietly asked him.
PART NINE "Oh baby you'll still be beautiful," he said as he gently brushed my cheek with his hand. "It's just that I'm a sucker for girls on horses and I think that this pair is the perfect match." JC said looking at me standing beside the horse he picked for me. "His name is Scout," he informed me.
"Thank you. He's perfect. I couldn't have picked a better one." I said as I quickly led Scout down the aisle to put him in cross ties to get tacked up. I didn't want JC to see me blushing.
When we got out on the trails, Justin and Meghann left us shortly afterwards. JC and I talked about our current lives and college and a little about his busy career life. He told me that he would send Meghann and I some tickets for their concert that was in a few days in DC. I was excited about that because I had just found out who they were and I really liked JC. He's very down to earth and I can talk to him easily. It's very hard to find a guy like that, and I wasn't about to let this one go.
"Where's the place that you wanted to show me? It's getting kind of dark." I asked JC interrupting the silence of enjoying the peacefulness.
"It's better to see it in the dark. But you're right. We should go there and then head back to the house. It's this way." JC said turning to the left.
I immediately followed. It only took us a few minutes to get there. It was at the top of a hill at the back of the property. I was confused at first when we got there because there was only a fence separating the two properties. On the other side was the neighbor's property with a ton of trees everywhere. "What's so special about this?" I asked.
"You'll see. Just wait. Do you have a watch on?" He asked.
"Yeah, it's a few minutes 'til 9:00." I replied.
"Okay then I think it's safe for you to turn around." He said with a smile.
I was a little nervous about what was going to happen, but I eventually turned my horse to face the opposite direction. My heart nearly leaped out of my chest at the site before me. It was gorgeous. JC and I had a view of the whole property from atop the hill. I was speechless.
"So, do you like it?" JC asked after a few minutes. By this time the nighttime lights had come on so we had a better view.
My only response was a shake of my head.
After a few minutes had passed I turned to JC who was already looking at me. I blushed under the moonlight but I know he saw it. "Thank you so much for bringing me here. It's wonderful. This has been one of the best nights of my life since I moved to DC." I said with a smile.
"I'm glad to hear you say that but this night is far from over. The best part is yet to come. If we don't get back soon then they will start with out us so we better hurry." He said as he started away.
"Hey!" I yelled still at my same spot. "What's going on?" I asked.
"You'll see! That's all I can say." He said as he glanced back. "Hurry up!"
"What is this all about?" I asked JC after we had put up our horses and were walking back to the main house. "I want to know!"
"You will find out in a few seconds. Just be patient." He told me as he took my hand when we approached the back yard.
The place was so dark and empty! I didn't know what was going on. I started to open my mouth to say something to JC but I heard him shush me. I didn't know what to do after that. So I stood there like an idiot holding onto JC's hand. We stood like that for a few minutes when I heard someone yell something about the lights. It sounded like Chris but I wasn't sure.
"SURPRISE!" Everyone yelled out in unison as they jumped around when someone finally turned the lights on.
"What is all of this?" I asked barely able to speak. There were so many people everywhere. At least a hundred. I didn't know what to do. I didn't know anyone and they were all staring at me. And the guys had definitely been busy getting everything ready. The place looked great. White Christmas lights had been decoratively strung around and some cheesy party lights were around the doorway leading into the house. But it still looked really great.
"It's your surprise," JC whispered in my ear.
"But why?" I asked turning to look at him.
"I want you to meet some people," was his reply.
"I would like to make a toast before we do any introductions." I heard Justin say over all of us. He then stood up and then proceeded to climb on top of the picnic table to stand so everyone could see and hear him better. "I would like to make a toast to Meghann. You mean the world to me darling and I'm so glad that we get to spend part of this week together. It's been a long time since we've had a free night like this to spend with any one and who better to spend it with then you." Justin said as he smiled at Meghann and lifted his glass in the air.
"I'll drink to that!" I heard Meghann say.
"Wait! I'm not finished yet!" Justin continued. "I want to make a toast to JC and his new girl Amy. I wish you guys the best for the future." He said as he grinned at me, not even noticing JC beside me.
"What is he talking about JC?" I asked a little embarrassed. I mean, yes, I really like JC but I didn't think that Justin was going to say that in front of all these people. JC and I had just met that night, and I wasn't even sure if JC felt the same way. What would give Justin the idea to say something like that? There were going to be a lot of questions later. I didn't really want to hear them though because I knew they were all going to be the same.
"This is for you," JC told me as he handed me a white carnation from the vase at a nearby table.
"JC you just took this from the table decorations. It wasn't for me silly. And why are you avoiding my question. Do you know something I don't ?"
"No, Amy. I'm not keeping anything from you. It's just that I don't want to ruin this night because of Justin's big mouth. Sometimes he doesn't know when to keep quiet about things. That's all. We'll talk about it later, I promise. And I want you to keep the flower. One of these around here are for you but I don't remember which one. Since they are all the same though just keep this one!" He said with a smile.
"What did you mean about Justin keeping quiet about things? You're still not telling me everything are you? This night won't be ruined if you're going to tell me what I think you're going to tell me." I said.
"What do you think I'm going to tell you?" JC asked.
"That you like me and you're too shy to just come out and say it to me." I said.
"That's not right at all. You have it totally wrong!" JC said getting defensive.
"Oh, so you don't like me?" I asked.
"No! It's not that at all. See, you're wrong again." He said.
After that neither one of us said anything for a few minutes. I finally broke the silence. "So explain to me how I am wrong then if you have it all figured out."
JC still paused even longer. "Okay so maybe you were a little right. But I said that we would talk about it later and I would have told you then!"
"Oh! So you were going to let me go the rest of the night with out knowing this? You know how much torture that would have put me through. I can't believe that you were going to do that!" I said hitting him on the shoulder. JC grabbed my hand before I had a chance to hit him though. He pulled me close to him and gave me a hug.
"I'm sorry. I should have just told you. Do you forgive me?" He asked breaking away to look at me with this sad face.
"How about a dance?" JC asked taking my hand and leading me to the dance area.
"Well okay!" I said jokingly because he had already put his arms around me and started to dance. His hands roamed my lower back as we danced and he held me oh so close. We were turning around slowing in our circle when Meghann and Justin caught my eye. They were also dancing. At that point I was jealous. They looked so good together and I was so happy for her. Almost every guy in her life had treated her badly and she needed someone better. And that prince charming just so happened to be Justin. He was great with her. She had been through a lot when she was barely a teenager that no person in this world should have gone through and I think that Justin was just what she needed to move on from her past. I was jealous because I really liked JC and I knew that Meghann and Justin loved each other. I just prayed that JC and I would be like that in the future. I knew that Meghann wished for the same for me. She knew I was the happiest I had even been in almost a year and she wanted it to last forever for me. It was all like a dream to me. I would wake up soon and it would all be over and JC would be gone. I just knew it. Things were too perfect.
"What are you thinking?" I heard JC ask. I hadn't even realized that he had taken his head off his resting spot on my shoulder and was know looking at me while I was in my dreamland.
"Oh, nothing." I replied. "It's just that I saw Justin and Meghann and was thinking about how good they look together and," I stopped.
"And what? You can tell me." JC said with a caring voice.
"Well, it's just that I am kind of jealous of them. I mean look at them! They are so right for each other. I just wish it could be me." I said looking away from JC. I couldn't believe that I had just said that. I wanted to crawl under a table and hide.
"Oh baby I'm not going anywhere. I know that I just met you tonight but we feel so right. My only wish is not to be like Justin and Meghann. I just wish that I had met you sooner because I know that this will turn out wonderful in the end. Just you wait and see."
"Oh JC, I…" I started. "Sshhh. Don't talk. Just enjoy the music." JC said putting a finger to my lips.
He rested it there for a few seconds while his eyes burned into mine. I gently kissed the single index finger that was held in front of my lips. JC took this as an invitation. He proceeded to outline my lips with his finger. When he circled it twice he rested his hand on my cheek and leaned in.
"Hey you two! I need to talk to you JC." I heard a male voice say from behind me.
"Oh hey D. Great timing." JC said a little annoyed.
I turned to see who interrupted. It was just Dax who played the keyboards in their stage band.
"Yeah, well thanks! Anyway I just wanted to let you know that we were going to have a little rehearsal around 8:00 so if you and the guys wanted to come and sing with us then you know where to find us." He told JC.
"Great. So you came all the way over here from the table that you were sitting at with Lance to tell me this?" JC asked getting suspicious.
"Well, I was on my way out and I saw you two…." Dax started.
"Yeah you saw us two. Then you just decided to come over and interrupt me with this wonderful news?" JC asked.
"JC just let it go alright?" I told him trying to get him to turn around.
"No, I want an explanation for this." JC said crossing his arms over his chest.
"Look I'm sorry. I just didn't think about it until I saw you on my out. It's late and practice starts early so I was going to get some shut eye when I saw you. I'm really sorry if I interrupted any special moment you two had. It'll never happen again. I promise." Dax said.
By this time I was shocked and little embarrassed that this was happening. JC didn't have to be so hard on him only for interrupting us when our lips were inches apart. I didn't know what to do.
"Well that's good to hear. You should be sorry. I'd be going home now if I was you. Looks like you had one to many gingerales tonight. Go home and sleep it off before morning. Then maybe we can get some work done." JC said.
"Well I'll see you in the morning then." Dax said turning to leave but not with out smiling a little too big.
"Hey! What was that all about?" I asked raising my voice a little.
"We had you so fooled there for a while! Man you should have seen the look on your face. I can't believe you feel for it. I would never be that mean to someone over not getting to kiss a girl." JC said laughing.
Boy I felt like the idiot then instead of Dax. "Oh so kissing me just a minute ago wasn't going to mean anything to you?" I asked getting a little mean but not really serious.
"I think this is my cue to leave. See you in the morning JC and it was a pleasure meeting you young lady." Dax said as he winked and walked toward the house to get his coat.
"What? No! Why would you say that?" JC asked a little confused and somewhat defensive.
"Because you just said that you wouldn't oh never mind! I understand what you said now." I said embarrassed for getting mad at him for it.
"I just meant that I would never be that rude to someone about anything. Yes, I was mad because he ruined our moment but knowing D he probably didn't even notice. He doesn't notice a lot of things but he saw me so he stopped to talk. Plus once you get to know Dax he argues like that with everyone. Sometimes I'll start the fight with him just like I did, but none of us mean any harm by it." JC explained.
"I really have a lot to learn about you and everyone else, and I'm looking forward to it. I seriously haven't had this much fun since I've moved here." I said.
"Where did you move from?" JC asked while taking my hand and leading me to a secluded table to talk. "Tell me everything."
"I moved here in August of last year from Indiana. I took a year off before college so I can concentrate on my music. I'm still not sure what I want to do with my life right now. There are so many things out there to do. I really love music but I don't think I'm that great at what I do. That's why I'm taking a year off to work on it. Plus there are so many jobs that have to do with music besides being a musician. So I'm still deciding." I said.
"What do you play?"
"Guitar and I sing a little too but it sounds nothing like how you sing." I told him.
"Everyone has their own style," he said before pausing for a moment. "I'd like to hear you sometime." "Oh I don't think so. No one is ever around when I practice. Meghann hasn't even heard me play before. But she has heard me sing to the radio or while in the shower."
"Well, if you ever change you mind my offer still stands." JC said with a smile.
"I'll think about it and let you know later."
"If you don't mind me asking, how do you know Meghann?" JC asked.
"I've known her since junior high. We weren't really friends in junior high much but that's when I met her. The summer before our sophomore year we got together at my house one night while my parents were out of state so she could stay with a guy for the night. We went swimming in my pool and then they ended up sleeping in my closet. It was a lot of fun and we've been really good friends after that. She actually only lived two miles from my house. I lived in the country and she lived in this little town called Laketon that was a few miles from me. So it was really convenient."
"Why did you two get split up?"
"Well she didn't pass her sophomore year and I went on to be a junior. She never caught up with the credits so I've already graduated and she's still in high school. She moved to Orlando to live with her sister and go to school there. She's visiting me on spring break. But tell me something now, how did you meet Meghann?" "Well when we were helping with a local charity at a children's hospital we met her there. That was last summer actually. Her and Justin really hit if off and the rest of us have been like brothers to her and took care of her and her sister if they ever needed it. It was funny how we met her though. I'm still not sure to this day why she was in the hospital though. But anyway we were playing around with these kids and jumping around in the recreation room and Justin was running around with this little boy on his back. He slowed down to take the boy into the hallway to get a drink when he ran right into Meghann. They were both turning the corner and bumped into each other. Meghann had some books and papers and they fell to the floor and scattered everywhere. It was strange to us at first because he was out in the hallway long after the little boy had come back in. So one of us went to check on him and found him out there sitting on the floor talking to her. We invited her in to help out and she's been with us ever since." He told me.
"Wow! That was a long time ago. I can't believe that Meghann never told me about this. Usually she calls me every other day and fills me in on everything. I figured that if she met this famous pop group of five gorgeous guys that she would have called me immediately. I can't believe her! I'm going to kill her. And you knew about me and everything but you wouldn't let her tell me about you or show me your picture before today! I would have flown to Orlando to meet you guys if I would have known about you before today. Now I am mad." I said putting on a pouting face.
"Oh baby don't me mad at me. I wanted you to know but we can't let all of our close friends going around telling anyone about us and that they're friends with us. You should know somewhat about the famous life of musicians and you would understand why we're not allowed to do that. It's just standard procedure with everyone. I'm sorry if I upset you or hurt your feelings. I didn't mean to." JC explained while he held my hand.
"Oh I know you didn't mean to get me upset and I understand where you are coming from. It's all right. I'll get over it. At least we did get to meet and for that I'm grateful. But I have an idea."
"What's that?" JC asked.
"That we get some rest for the night. It's getting kind of late and there are not many people here anymore. Plus Meghann and I have to get ready for the concert tomario." I said.
"Tomario?" JC asked giving me a strange look.
"Don't ask alright. I think I should go and find Meghann. As much as I would love to stay here and be with you we really need to get some rest." I said while getting up.
"Okay I understand. I'll help you look and then I'll take you and Meghann back to your place."
"Well are you guys ready to go?" JC asked after we found Meghann. We already said our good-byes to the remaining people at the party, which was still a lot.
"Yeah we just need to get our jackets. I'll be right back." Meghann said heading off in the direction of the coat closet.
"Are all these people going to be gone by the time you get back from taking us home?" I asked JC over the loud music still blaring from somewhere inside the house.
"I'm not exactly sure, but I don't think there are any people in the pool house but if there are then I'll just kick them out. So the rest of the guys will probably stay with me and Lance for the night."
"You guys are more than welcome to stay at my place," I offered.
"What about your roommate? Will she get mad? Do you even have room for all five of us?" he asked.
"She works late on Sunday night to clean and stuff at work and she only has one late afternoon class on Monday. And there is plenty of room for all five of you guys just as long as you aren't too loud." I said with a sly smile.
"Well let me ask everyone first. I'll be right back. Don't go anywhere!" JC ordered with a quick smile.
"Where's JC?" Meghann asked when she returned.
"He went to ask the rest of the guys if they wanted to crash at my place since there's still a party going on here and they have to get up early." I informed her.
"Really? That's great! So how are we splitting everyone up?" Meghann asked with excitement in her voice.
"You and Justin can sleep anywhere you want just as long as you are quiet. I don't want to hear anything from you at all tonight!" I warned her as JC and the rest of the guys walked up.
"Are we all set?" I asked.
"Yeah but we'll have to take two vehicles. I'm going to take my jeep and Joey will take his car." JC said on the way out.
"Justin and I will ride with you and Amy," Meghann said to JC.
"Alright, that's fine but get in the back." JC said. "Both of you!" He told Justin who was waiting for me to get in the back.
"Fine! I see how you are now!" Justin said.
"Okay how do I get to your place?" JC asked as we started down the drive.
"Turn left here and then left again at the highway until you get into town." I said as I rested my head on the back of the seat. I could hear sweet sounds of Kenny G in JC's car as we drove the thirty minutes to town in silence.
"Okay now where?" JC asked while shaking me. I must have dozed off with out realizing it.
"Oh, sorry." I said as I blushed from being embarrassed.
"That's alright. It's just that Meghann is asleep too and you're the only other person that knows how to get to your apartment." JC joked.
"Oh, turn right at this light. It's just down the road from here." I said as I sat up so I could see better. "Pull in over………..What are you doing?" I asked after JC abruptly stopped on the road right before our entrance to my apartment building's parking lot. I heard a car horn from behind me and JC looked back before slowly pulling into the lot. "What was that all about?" I asked while we were still sitting in the car. JC paused a while before answering. Maybe a little too long.
"It's nothing. I just remembered that I, um forgot something that I need for tomorrow. So I'm just going to go back to the ranch." JC said while not taking his eyes off the building.
"JC, is something wrong?" I asked with sincerity.
"No, everything is fine but I'm just going to stay at the ranch that's all." He said while he took his eyes off the building and looked at the pavement in front of the car.
"Okay, that's alright. I guess I'll see you later then." I said while opening the car door. I paused for a moment waiting for a reply but I never got one.
"What is his problem?" Chris asked me as we all watched JC speed away.
"I'm not sure. He just freaked when he saw where I live. He said that he forgot something and that he would just stay at the ranch tonight." I said still watching in the distance where JC's car traveled.
"Man, I'm sorry. I can tell he really likes you so I'm not sure what his deal is." Chris said putting a comforting arm on my shoulder.
"Yeah, he didn't even say goodbye to me either." I said while thinking about what Chris had just told me.
"Let's just go inside. We can talk in there if you want." He offered leading the way towards the building. "Thanks Chris but I just want to try get some rest right now. I've had a long day. We'll talk later." I told him.
I decided to take a hot bath and try to relax before going to bed. It did little to calm me. I just didn't understand the way JC acted when he dropped me off. He was all excited about staying at my place and then he flipped when we got here. And to make things more complicated Chris tells me that JC likes me. I'm just so confused now. Thoughts of what happened with JC earlier in the car were still fresh in my mind as I laid down on my bed. I fell into a deep restless sleep that night.
"Hey are you ever going to get up?" Chris hollered with his face in mine. I was still in bed after a long night of tossing and turning.
"What time is it?" I asked with out opening my eyes.
"It's almost noon. We've already gone to practice and Justin and I came back here. I wanted to see how you were doing and if you would like to go out to lunch with me so we can talk or something."
"Sure Chris, that sounds great. Just let me take a shower and I'll be ready to go in a few minutes." I said slowly getting out of bed.
"Where is Chris?" I asked after I had gotten ready to go. "He left about ten minutes ago and said he'd be back in a few." Meghann said.
"Alright. I'll just wait in my room." I said before disappearing. I wasn't sure where Chris could have gone. I thought we were just going to get some lunch.
"May I come in?" I heard a male voice ask.
"Yeah sure. I'm just watching TV. Are you ready to go?" I asked Chris.
"Yeah, I just wanted to get some more OJ for you because you were out and I wanted some. But I'm ready now."
"Okay where are we going?" I asked getting up to leave.
"Where's a good place to go in this town?" He asked.
"We could go to the mall and look around and eat there. If that's alright with you." I said.
"That's fine but only if you drive." Chris said.
"Do you two need anything while we're gone?" I asked Meghann and Justin who were in their own world on the couch.
"No," I heard one of them say between laughs.
"Those two are so cute. I can't believe that she never told me about any of you until yesterday. And I can't believe that I never bought you're CD until yesterday." I said getting in the car. "But I probably wouldn't have believed Meghann if she told me she was dating a music star. I would have laughed. So I guess I'm glad she didn't tell me. But I would have liked to have met you sooner."
"Yeah me too. I haven't seen JC this happy in a long time. Well he was happy." Chris said. "What do you mean 'was'?" I asked.
"He was so happy with you last night, I could tell. But after he brought you back home and he left he's been acting really weird. He hardly said two words to any of us this morning at rehearsal."
"I really like JC and I admit I was a little doubtful about his feelings for me after what happened last night. But hearing you tell me that he was happy with me makes me even more confused." I said.
"I know JC really well and I can tell he does like you. I'm just not sure what happened with him last night." Chris told me.
"That makes me feel a little better but I'd really like to talk to JC myself. What are you guys doing tonight?" I asked.
"I'm not sure but I think that I can talk him into doing something with all of us." Chris said.
"When I got your CD yesterday Meghann told me that JC was from around here. Is that true?" I asked.
"Yeah, he did live in this town before I met him in Orlando where we formed the group. But I'm not sure where he lived."
"I wonder if he was scared of something. Because before we even pulled into the parking lot he stops all of a sudden and he never took his eyes off the building." I told him.
"I'm not sure. We will have to talk to him about this later. I know that I'll go crazy if he's in this mood for the rest of the week. We all will."
"Did you two have fun?" Meghann asked after we had returned home and Chris and Justin went back to the ranch.
"Yeah, it was fun," was my reply as I went to my room to do some serious thinking. I wasn't in there for but about 20 minutes when I heard Meghann quietly approach me.
"You know, we never read anymore of Josh's diary last night. Is now a good time?" Meghann asked almost hesitating.
"I'm not sure Megh. I want to but I'm scared to. We should just give it to the police and have them do it. This isn't our area. But man, I want to do it myself so bad too! I just don't know what to do. Maybe I need more time." I said.
"I think that now is good time. But I'm not going to pressure you. After we go out tonight I need to talk to you about something. I should have told you earlier but I put it off and now I think you need to know. But not until tonight." Meghann said while getting up.
"Why can't we just talk about it now? We have time before we leave. Chris said we weren't supposed to meet him until 9. That's three hours away." I said.
"I know, I know. I shouldn't have brought it up, I'm sorry. But I promise you I will tell you everything tonight. After you and JC talk." She said while leaving my room.
"Meghann wait!" I hollered after her. But I was too late. She had already shut the door and I knew she heard me but she wouldn't come back. I didn't know what to think now. She made it seem like a life and death matter but she's still putting off on telling me. 'At least she promised to tell me later tonight' was the last thought I had before drifting off to sleep.
"Hello?" I said in a sleepy, groggy voice as I picked up the phone.
"Hello, Amy. It's me, Chris. I'm just calling to make sure that we are still on for tonight," he said.
"Of course we are. Why would you have doubts? Is JC having second thoughts and you don't want to tell me?" I asked.
"No, no. That's not it. I just want to make sure you're okay because JC is still acting very strange. I don't want you to get your hopes up about tonight and then be all disappointed when you see JC. But he may snap back when he sees you, and then again he may not," he said.
"It's so weird Chris. I care about him so much," I sighed.
"I know you do. He cares about you too. He maybe in love." Chris told me.
I laughed, "Why would you say that?"
"Well," he started, "I've never seen him act like this from a girl. I'm worried about him."
"I am too Chris, I am too.
"I know you are. I'm going to try to talk to him again before we leave. But I should let you go so you can get ready," he said.
"That sounds good. Thanks for everything Chris and thanks for calling me. I'll see you soon. Bye." I said.
After I hung up the phone I laid in bed staring at the ceiling just thinking about some of the possibilities of things that could happen tonight. More than half scared me. But there was the one chance that things would be like the night we first met. I hoped that's the way things would go.
"Hey dumbass! Get up!" Meghann yelled interrupting my thoughts as she jumped on the bed.
"I'm already awake. Chris woke me up when he called. He said that JC is still acting weird and that he would try to talk to him again before they left." I told her while getting out of bed.
"You should wear this really tight outfit tonight and make JC get his head out of his ass," Megh said with a slight laugh.
"That wouldn't work with JC. He's not like that." I said with a sigh as I sat down on the end of the bed.
Meghann came over and sat next to me. "Everything will work out. I can feel it. You and JC will get married and live happily ever after and have 2.5 children and a white picket fence and a collie like the rest of us will."
I had to laugh at that. "I hope you know what you're talking about," I said as I got up to finish getting ready. We only had 15 minutes before it was time to go.
"There they are!" I hollered at Meghann who was looking in the opposite direction of the mall from me.
"It's about time you guys got here!" Meghann said as Justin came to give her a hug.
"JC changed his mind at the last minute and we had a hard time getting him to come," Chris said before turning around to nod in the direction of JC who had been walking on the slow side and still hadn't caught up. Joey was walking behind him like a sheep dog to make sure JC made it to the group.
"And you thought he would "snap" back when he saw me?" I asked Chris privately.
"I'm sorry Amy. Just give him some time to open up. He'll probably talk to you about whatever is bothering him before he talks to one of us." Chris said as JC approached and stopped about 4 feet from our small circle. He couldn't even look at me. He just starred at the ground the entire time.
"Well, I don't know about you guys, but I'm hungry," Joey said breaking the silence.
"I am too," I said. "I'll come with you."
"Any one else coming?" Joey asked. No one moved.
"Alright more for me!" Joey shouted as he put his arm around my shoulder and together we headed off to the food court. As we turned the corner I looked back at our group. I saw them still standing in their same circle talking. But as I looked at JC I saw that he was watching Joey and me walk away. I held his gaze until he was out of my sight. A chill ran down my spine as I got off the escalator when I remembered the look on his face. It was this sad look like he wanted me to hold him. Yet he also had this jealous look like he was mad it was just Joey and me and that he wanted to be with us or me.
"Are you okay?" Joey asked. "You're being really quiet."
"Yeah, I was just thinking about JC," I replied.
"Oh, Amy, Chris told me all about it. I hope you won't get mad about that. We're all concerned about JC and you too. None of us no what is going on but we just want this to be over soon. We all hate seeing both of you so miserable and not knowing how to help." Joey said giving me a half hug.
"I wish Meghann was here," I said.
"Why?" Joey asked.
"Because I want to tell her how much I love her for introducing me to the five most wonderful guys any one could ever meet. Even if one is very stubborn."
Joey had to laugh at that. "That's what I like to hear. We meet so many people on our job, but we don't get to know them like this. The only friends that we do have are the ones from before we became a group and a few we've met a long the way. A lot of those are other bands. But we also have each other. We're all like brothers."
"I can tell that you guys are really close and that you all care about what's wrong with JC."
"Yeah, it's really hard when you see someone you care about in pain and don't know how to help."
"Everything will turn out okay. I'm sure it will. He hopefully just needs some time to think or something." I said.
"Hey! Did you two eat yet?" Chris yelled on his way to our table.
"Yeah, we were just talking," Joey told him.
"Well, I know something that will get your minds off everything!" Chris told us
"Sure! What is it Chris? I don't think I've tried everything yet," I said getting up.
"Ladies and gentlemen, please keep your arms, hands and legs inside the ride at all time; we are on our way to the arcade!" Chris said taking the lead.
"Ha ha! I beat you again!" I yelled at Chris. We had played nearly every game twice by now. More than half the times I beat him, but he was a good sport.
"Oh yeah? Well talk this!" Chris yelled coming at me from behind. He got me in a bear hug and pinned my arms down so I couldn't move. This time he picked me up and started to spin me around. I was laughing hysterically the whole time while trying to get out of his hold.
When he finally did let me go we were both laughing so hard. I couldn't stand up straight and soon found myself falling. A pair of familiar, warm arms awaited.
"Oh, JC," I said surprisingly. I stopped laughing then and stood on my own. I wasn't sure what to do next so I just stood there.
JC spoke first. "Can we go somewhere to talk?"
"Um, sure," I said slowly.
"Let's go this way," JC said taking my hand and leading me off towards the left.
We walked for a few minutes before JC suggested we sit down in front of a fountain. It was another few minutes before either of us spoke. JC started. "I know exactly what I want to tell you but I'm not sure how to say it," he said.
"It's okay," I said sympathetically, "take your time."
"No, it's not okay. I haven't said more than about five words to any of the guys. I hate putting them through this and I hate what I'm doing to you," JC said turning to face me.
I also turned to face him. "I'm going to be okay JC. You don't need to worry about that." "Yes, I do," he said smiling, "I want to."
I smiled too.
"I've just been thinking lately ever since I took you home and I've had my head so much in my thoughts and my past that I lost touch with the present. Maybe when you ran into me just a minute ago I snapped back into reality," he explained.
'Snapped back' I thought. I made a personal note to give Chris a big thank you hug later.
"What about your past?" I asked.
"Something happened a long time ago and I will tell you sometime but right here is not the place. You will learn about that later. But for right now I'd like to go back to the arcade. I challenge you to every two person game they have and I guarantee that I'm not as easy as Chris," JC said getting up.
He was still holding onto my hand. When he saw that he brought it up to his mouth and kissed the back of it. I knew that I blushed when he did it.
"See," he continued, "Chris has this soft spot for girls and video games. He always lets them win."
"Oh, I see. I'm going to have to talk with that boy later then," I said as JC laughed and we headed back to the arcade.
All the guys were surprised to see JC so happy. Chris came over to me at the change machine to ask what happened.
"We'll talk later Chris. But not right now, later tonight maybe?" I asked.
"That sounds good to me. I'll call you later then," he said before walking away.
The rest of the day went smoothly. The thought that something more could go wrong did not enter my mind. Little did I know that something else would happen.
“I’m glad to see that you can JC are talking again,” Meghann said as she shut the door behind us after we entered my apartment.
“I know. I feel so much better now that we’re talking again. I still don’t know what exactly happened, but he said that we would talk about it later and he would tell me all about it sometime. So who knows when that is. But I don’t care. I could tell it was something that really hurt him and I’d rather not have him bring it all up again. It could just hurt him again,” I said.
“Yeah, you’re right. But maybe he needs to tell someone. It could be hurting more to keep it in. But since we’re alone again, I’d really like to take another look at that diary. I know you said you weren’t sure if you could read anymore of it but I know you want to. And you know you want to,” Meghann said before pausing to remove the blue mystery book from her top dresser drawer. Then she continued, “Let’s go sit on the couch.”
I follow Megh to the couch. We sat for a few minutes before she opened to a random page. It read:
November 3, 1995
Thank you for being here for me to talk to over the past year. You're the only friend I have. And I have some good and bad news. The bad news is that I'm no longer going to write to you. But the good news is that I'm coming to see you soon. I just can't take it here anymore and I don't have anywhere else to go. You're the only one that has listened to me and I want to be with you now. But I need to take care of a few things and then I'll be there.
See you soon.
Meghann and I were already in tears. She slowly turned the page to continue reading and there was nothing. Would we ever find out what happened to Josh?
“Now what?” I asked Meghann.
“Let’s start from the beginning,” she suggested and turned to the front.
This is what we saw:
March 23rd, 1993
Hello. My name is Joshua Scott Chasez. I’ve heard a lot about you and I’ve learned that you are one of the only people that I can trust. My parents just inherited this new business, they now make furniture for a living, and I haven’t been getting much attention from them lately. It’s like all they care about is their new business and they never have time for me or my brother and sister. I will fill you in on all the more in depth details when I have time. I’m off to the city to look for a manager or someone to represent my singing. But I’m going to show you a picture of me so you will know what I look like. I hope we can become friends. I will keep you updated soon.
“Where is the picture?” I asked not seeing anything on the front page.
Meghann slowly turned the page and my heart skipped a beat when we saw the familiar smile on the face.
“I can’t do this anymore!” I yelled getting up. Meghann just sat there and didn’t say anything. “Aren’t you freaked out about this?” I asked getting angry that she was calm about it.
“Amy, there’s something that I need to tell you. I should have told you when we first found this diary.” She said slowly.
“What? What are you keeping from me?” I yelled, angry that she was hiding something from me.
“I never told you JC’s last….” She trailed off.
“What?” I screamed. “You mean you never told me JC’s last name? Why? If you knew all this time, WHY didn’t you tell me?”
“Hello?” I barked into the phone.
“Amy, it’s JC. Is something wrong?” he asked worriedly.
“No, JC everything’s fine. Meghann and I were just in an argument. That’s all. So what’s up?” I asked hoping that this conversation would cheer me up. But I knew that it wouldn’t.
“I was just calling to say goodbye. We had an unexpected schedule change and have to leave for Orlando in about an hour. I wish I could see you before we leave but there isn’t time. So I’m going to send for you and Meghann to come to Orlando tomorrow afternoon and spend the rest of the week there with us. Is that okay with you and Meghann?” he asked with a bit of hope in his voice.
“Actually that’s not necessary. Meghann and I are leaving tonight for Orlando also. But not until 3 in the morning so I had planned on stopping over before we left but now I see that’s not an option anymore. I’ll call you in the morning and we can make plans then.” I said hoping to end this conversation soon.
“That sounds good to me. I’ll talk to you later baby,” JC said.
“Yeah, later,” I whispered before hanging up.
“What was that all about?” Meghann asked when I hung up the phone.
“That was JC,” I said as I felt the tears start to come, “they are leaving in about an hour for Orlando.” I paused for a minute and Meghann didn’t say anything. Our argument was still on the top of our minds but neither of us wanted to bring it back up. I continued first. “I need some fresh air. I’ll be back later.” I said as I grabbed a sweater and slammed the door shut behind me before Megh could reply.
‘What am I going to do?’ was the main thought that ran through my mind on my fourth journey around my block. I didn’t know what to do next. I know now why JC freaked when he dropped me off the other night. He’s probably not been here since he left I’m guessing. He did say that he would tell me all about it sometime. Am I just going to sit through the whole explanation knowing the ending or should I bring up his diary and knowing his parents? I don’t think that it would help him knowing that his parents actually did care more than anything in the world. I finally decided to head back to my apartment and finish packing and try to get a few hours of sleep. I’d think about everything on the way to Orlando.
“Are you OK Amy?” Meghann asked when I closed the door behind me. I could tell she’d barely moved since I left.
“Yeah, I’m fine. I’m just gonna finish packing and take a nap before we head to the airport. You should probably do the same.” I said.
“Amy, before you do anything we need to talk. I know that I should have told you all of this before when I first learned of Josh Chasez and when I first introduced you to….” She drifted off.
“Introduced me to who Megh?” I asked knowing what she was going to say but needing to hear it.
“JC Chasez.” She whispered.
We both just stood there, neither one of us knew what to do. I could feel the tears start and didn’t want Meghann to see me cry so I quickly turned on my heels and went to my room. The rest of the night would be one of the longest I’d ever had.
"Dammit!" I said out loud as I looked at the clock and noticed I still had two and a half hours before I had to leave for the airport. I had already been in bed for two hours after packing and I was still unable to sleep. I was even unable to recall and inparticular thought that had passed my mind since my phone conversation with JC.
After a few more minutes passed and I realized that sleep was totally impossible. I decided to get up and find something to do. As I was walking out of my room my computer caught my eye. So much had happened since Meghann had gotten here that checking my email had not crossed my mind. I pushed the main power switch on my way to get a midnight snack. There's nothing like Oreo's and cold milk when you're feeling shitty.
By the time I got back to my computer it was ready. I knew that a hours surfing the 'net would make time go quickly. Thank God for '90s technology.
**Two hours later**
"Amy are you awake?" Meghann asked from the other side of the door.
"Yeah, Meghann, I'm up," I said.
I look over at the clock and noticed I only had forty-five minutes before it was time to leave. I decided I'd start getting ready now since I would probably look like this for the rest of the day. I was surprised when what seemed like a few minutes turned into forty and Meghann and I were walking towards the elevator.
'Maybe this day wouldn't be so bad after all.' I thought on the drive to the airport.
"Please place your tray tables and seats in the upright positions and fasten your safety belts. We will shortly be landing in Orlando." I heard while be shaken awake by Meghann. "Get up stupid! We're here!" I heard her say.
"Dammit! Get off me!" I yelled at her. She knows that I hate to be woken up. But I knew I couldn't stay here forever. I sat up and fixed my seat and put my seat belt back on and watched out the window and wondered what the day would bring for me. Would I see JC today? How was I supposed to act when I saw him next? Am I supposed to pretend that I don't know anything? I just hope that when I do see him again I can keep my cool. I just hope this whole situation goes away soon.
"Ready?" Meghann asked after the plane had landed and everyone was exiting.
"I hope so," I said with a forced smile. "Where are we going?"
"We are going to my apartment that I share with a friend I met through Lance. Her name's Brooke. She's kinda cool but not really my type. Kinda dorky I guess. You'd probably like her though. She'll probably be asleep still when we get there unless Lance is already there. They are kind of an item so Lance is usually over at our place. And you know how I feel about Lance. So it kinda sucks for me at my place. I'm rooming with a girl that I don't really clique with and then she's dating a guy that I think is gay so I'm usually away somewhere else. It's a great place though. By the beach, lots of parties too!" Meghann explained on our 20 minute drive from the airport. I liked Lance so I figured that Brooke and I would get a long just fine. Meghann is just picky about her friends.
"Here we are!" Megh said as she parked her car in front of a large beach-side condo. It looked great from the outside and I couldn't wait to get inside. I knew Meghann was happy with where she lived even though she didn't really like the person that she lived with and the people that sometimes came over. This was where she always wanted to be and I was happy seeing her there.
"This is it! Not too big but it's nice." Meghann said as we walked in her apartment. It was very nice. And very surprisingly, clean! I was a little shocked. There were lots of pictures of her and Justin and a few of Lance with who I figured was Brooke. It was cute.
"Oh, well I guess that you'll have to meet Brooke later. Her and Lance went out for a while. But we get cookies! Lance's mom made them for him when he came home but he didn't eat them all so Brooke left them for me. Now we don't have to go out for breakfast!" Meghann said as she got out the cookies and two glasses of milk.
"If I don't get any of those cookies then you are buying my breakfast," I joked with her.
"Take as many as you want and I'll eat what's left," she said pushing the plate in my direction.
"Alright!" I said taking half the cookies. "So what are we going to do today?"
"I figured that I'd show you around the beach here and then we'll go shopping. The guys want to take us to one of their favorite clubs tonight." She said. When she saw the look on my face after she said that she added, "That is, if you want to go out."
"I'll think about it," was my reply.
"Well, you can take those with you but I want to take you shopping and show you around town, so lets go!" Meghann yelled at me right after I had gotten comfortable on the couch with the cookies and was already channel surfing for early morning cartoons.
"Dammit!" I muttered as I switched off the TV and followed Megh out the door.
"Megh, I think I'm just going to rent a movie and stay home by myself tonight," I said later that afternoon while we were on our way home after a long day of shopping and site seeing.
"Are you sure? I'll stay with you if you'd like," she offered.
"No, that's alright. Brooke will be with Lance so it'll give me a chance to be alone and just think," I explained.
"JC is going to be really upset. He had a very special evening planned for you," she told me.
"Just tell him…." I paused to think of a good excuse, "that I wasn't feeling well."
"You want me to lie to JC for you?" she asked, putting on this surprised act.
"I'm sure you can handle it," I said with a smile.
"I can't believe you're gonna make me do this!" Meghann exclaimed.
"I knew I could count on you. I do like JC but I still don't know him very well and I'd feel uncomfortable being around him right now. I wish it didn't have to be this way, that we didn't have to lie to him. But until I figure out what to do I just can't see him right now. I hope you understand," I explained.
"Sorta, but I'll cover for you for as long as you need me to. Just don't make it go on forever or I'll have to beat your ass for being stupid and pushing away a great guy."
"I'm not trying to push him away. Just put things on hold until I get this shit in my mind cleared up. I don't want things to move too fast with us."
"So what are your plans for tonight?" Megh asked.
"I'll probably either rent a movie or go for a walk on the beach."
"Sounds like fun," she said sarcastically then changed to a serious tone to add, "just watch out for some of the people on the beach."
"Are you worrying about me?" I asked.
"Maybe, it's just that you've never been here and I know what kind of people live around here. Something almost happened to Brooke with this one guy I met when I first moved here. Luckily for her Lance was nearby. If it hadn't of been for him who knows what would have happened." She paused and then added with a laugh, " That's one and probably the only thing I'm grateful of Lance for."
I had to laugh too. It was funny listening to Meghann talk about how much she loved Lance. I wondered how Brooke put up with living with her.
"Are you sure you don't want to come?" Meghann asked for the millionth time while she was getting ready.
"Yes, I'm sure. Now remember what I told you to say?"
"Yeah, I pushed you out of the car on the way here for being stupid," she yelled from the other room. She came back moments later to retrieve her purse and jacket before leaving.
"Are you sure you're going to be okay?" she asked with a serious tone.
"I'll be fine Mommy," I said with a sarcastic smile.
"Do you want me to bring you back anything?"
"I'll call you if I need anything but seriously I'll be okay."
"If you're sure," she said with a smile. "Have fun!" she added on her way out the door.
"Great now what am I going to do for the rest of the night," I said out loud. I knew everyone would be gone until way after midnight so I picked up the remote to see what was on TV. 'Great,' I thought. Every movie that was on pay per view I'd already seen.
When I finally figured out what to do with myself for part of the night anyways, I switched off the TV and went to get a sweater. I was going to take a walk on the beach. It was already after dark and the sky was clear so it was just begging for a walk. I hoped the fresh air would clear my mind. Unbeknownst to me, I was going to get more than that.
"Hey, Meghann, where's Amy?" JC asked when Meghann met him and the rest of the guys at Chris's house, alone.
"She wasn't feeling well. I think she had a migraine and you know, all that traveling and stuff. She really wanted to be here but she's just really tired," Megh explained to everyone.
"I'll have to call her later. I hope she feels better soon," JC said with a worried tone.
"She probably won't answer the phone because she said she was either going for a walk on the beach, or she was going to rent a movie. Unless she does something besides those then she won't answer the phone." She told JC.
"Why is that?" JC asked confused.
"Well if she goes for a walk she won't be there to answer the phone. If she watches a movie she won't answer the phone either. She doesn't like to be interrupted when she's watching a movie."
"Sounds like JC," Justin joked.
"Yeah, it does," JC whispered, drifting off in his own thoughts.
'I don't even see any people on the beach at all! I wonder why Meghann told me to be careful?' I thought.
I probably walked for about another 20 minutes when I finally saw other human life. I was on my way back to Meghann's apartment when I spotted them sitting on a rock watching out over the water. It was an older couple that was probably on vacation for spring break. I was just going to keep walking when I heard the older man clear his throat. It made me stop dead in my tracks. I turned around to see who it was but since they had their back to me I couldn't really determine who it was. I wasn't sure what to do. Do I say something to them? But what if it's really them? What would I say?
The next thing I knew I was running. To where, I wasn't sure. I was just running. I just had to get away. But wait, I couldn't leave with out knowing for sure. I had to know if it was them.
"Excuse me?" I asked a middle-aged woman behind the counter of the lobby of Megh's apartment building.
"Can I help you with something?" she asked with out a smile.
'Must've been a long day for her,' I thought.
"Yes, I'm looking for someone," I started. "Are they lost?" she asked getting annoyed.
"No, I was looking for someone who might be living here," I explained.
"What is their last name?" she asked.
"I'm looking for..."
"Hold on," she said when the phone rang.
I stood there for a few minutes while she argued with some very unlucky person on the phone. I soon grew bored and very impatient, two of my weaker characteristics. So I grabbed a piece of paper off the lady's desk along with a pen and wrote down the name of the people I was looking for. I handed the woman the note when I was finished. She had read it while she was still arguing on the phone. She entered the name into the computer in front of her. Moments later I was walking away with tears in my eyes and a piece of paper with a room number on it. I glanced at the clock before entering the elevator and realized it wasn't too late. I knew what I had to do.
I pulled the hat I found in Meghann’s closet farther down over my head as I approached room 112.
’Well this is it,’ I thought as I stood outside the door.
“Who’s there?” a husky voice answered to my knock.
’Oh God it’s him!’ I thought as I moved on to step B of my plan.
I cleared my throat and disguised my voice to the best of my ability and replied with, “I’m sorry. I must have the wrong room.” I continued with my plan and turned and walked away before they had a chance to open the door and see me. My eyes never left the floor until I reached the elevator.
There are five floors to this apartment building. Meghann was in room 304 so it took me a few minutes to get back. I only had a few phone calls to make and then sit back and wait for the rest of my well schemed plan to take action. I prayed everything would go smoothly.
“Guys, I thought we were going to go out tonight?” Meghann whined for the millionth time. They were getting ready to start their third movie.
“We were?” Justin asked.
“Dammit J!” Meghann said as she hit him with a pillow. “Don’t you two fight on my couch!” Chris yelled. “Take it outside!”
So they did just that. Justin picked Megh up and put her over his shoulder and took her outside, kicking and screaming, to the pool.
“Guys, I think I’m going to leave too. I’m going to go see if Amy is doing okay,” JC said getting up to leave.
“Maybe you should call first,” Joey suggested.
“Meghann said she probably...” he started.
“I know what she said. But if she does answer if would be polite to tell her you are coming over. Maybe you could pick her up something on the way,” Joey said with a wink then added, “ya know, to make her feel better.”
“Yeah, I should,” JC agreed. He left the room to go into the kitchen to call from there. I answered after the second ring.
“Hey baby, it’s JC.” “I’d know that voice anywhere,” I said with a laugh.
“How’re you feeling?”
“Just tired mostly. I went for a walk earlier and that felt good.”
“Would you mind if I came over for a little bit?”
“I was actually just getting ready to call you and ask you that.”
“So I take that as a yes?” JC asked.
“I’ll see you in a little bit!” I said with a smile.
Well, the easy part was over with now. I hoped the rest would go as well as that did. I just have one more phone call to make and then I’ll be all set.
"It's unlocked!" I yelled from the couch. I was on the phone with my dad. "Hey JC. I'll be off in a minute."
"Take your time," he said taking a seat on the chair next to me.
"Yeah, that sounds fun. I'm not sure if I can make it until the 3rd though." I said into the phone.
"Okay, I'll talk to you later. I love you. Bye." I said before hanging up.
"Sorry that was my dad. I'm supposed to go home next month and visit with him. We were just making plans." I explained.
"You don't have to be sorry."
"It must me hard for you to spend time with your family since you travel a lot," I said from memory. 'So far, so good.' I thought.
"Yeah, it is," JC said, looking at the ground.
"When was the last time you saw them?" I asked.
"It's been," he paused for a moment. Probably thinking up a good lie. "Quite a while actually," he continued.
"Do you want to go for a walk?" I asked.
"Sure, if you're feeling up to it."
"JC, I'm fine. I'm not sick or anything. I was just tired." I explained.
"Yeah, I know. So where are we going?"
"You'll see. I want to show you something." I said as I lead him out of the apartment building, to the beach.
We walked for about twenty minutes just talking about our days. When we reached the rock where I saw the mysterious couple earlier that evening we stopped and sat down.
"JC, what do you want to do with you life?" I asked.
"I'm already doing what I want to do."
"But are you going to do this forever? Or do you have other plans in mind?"
"I'm not sure. I haven't really thought about it. I'm just going day by day."
"I'm sure your parents are really proud of you, with your success and all." I said.
"Yeah, they are," he said quietly. Almost a whisper.
"Do you miss your life before the group started?" I asked.
"No," he said quickly.
"What did you do before the group?"
"Just normal teenage stuff. Went to school, took out the trash, fed the dog."
"Is that all? Nothing special?"
"Nothing that sticks out in my mind."
We sat there for a few more minutes in silence. I had no more questions. Well I did but I wasn't the one to be asking them. I glanced at my watch and noticed it was getting late.
"Maybe we should start heading back. I'm getting cold and it's getting late." I said getting up.
"Yeah, you're right." JC replied getting up to follow me.
I was already ahead of him and when he caught up to me he placed his jacket over my shoulders and then put his arm around me. I smiled and wondered if his parents realized how much of a wonderful gentleman their son, Josh, had turned out to be.
"Where are we going? Meghann is on floor three. Not one." JC said confused when we got off the elevator on the wrong floor.
"I know. But I want you to meet one of my friends that I met today on the beach." I replied.
"Are you sure? I thought you wanted to get back?"
"We will. I just want to stop here for a few minutes. Unless you don't want to meet my friends," I said.
"No, it's okay. I just thought you were getting tired and wanted to get back and go to bed," he said.
"Not just yet, but that does sound like a good idea." I said as we approached room 112.
I stopped outside the door and at the last minute I remembered something and changed my plans.
"Oh JC, could you go get me a frutopia out of the machine by the elevator?" I asked.
"Sure, I guess," he said as I gave him a dollar.
As soon as I saw him turn the corner I knocked on the door of room 112. This time a man didn't ask who it was. A woman opened the door. I felt the tears come as soon as I saw her face.
"Yes, it's me," I said giving the older woman a hug.
"What are you doing here?" she asked.
"I don't have time to explain it all right now. But I need you to do something for me," I said.
"Sure sweetie, what do you need?" she asked.
I quickly explained to her what I needed her to do. I didn't explain everything to her but enough to get her to do what I asked.
"They didn't have any frutopia, so I got you some water." JC said handing me the bottle.
"So are they home?" he asked.
"Yeah, I was just waiting for you. They are inside watching TV," I explained. I was going to take a drink of my water but realized that my hands were shaking so I quickly put them to my side. I looked up at JC and realized that he saw. 'I hope this is the right thing' I thought as we entered the apartment.
I noticed that nothing looked like I thought it would. I was glad it wasn't the way I thought it would be or it might have ruined everything before it even happened. I took JC's hand in mine as we approached the living room. We still couldn't see in the room yet, which was good. I glanced up at JC and drew in a deep breath as we rounded the corner and entered the room.