Chapter One

June 5, 2001

Rose DeWitt-Bukater looked at her watch as she ran through the airport terminal. She had five minutes to make it to her airplane. If she missed her flight she'd never make it home to see her mother, not that it would be a true disappointment in her eyes. Her mother's eyes were a different story. Oh well, no time to think of that. Have to get to the gate.

"This is the final boarding call for Flight 517 to Philadelphia..."

Rose paused as she got in the line to board the plane before digging into the back pocket of her jeans to pull out her boarding pass. She was still slightly out of breath as she smiled and handed her pass to the attendant. As she stepped into the airplane's cabin she let out a sigh of relief. She moved back toward the coach section, looking for her seat. She found it, regretfully an aisle seat right beside a man about her age with blonde hair.

"Hello," she said to him as she sat down.

He turned to look at her. "Hello..."

After setting her purse on the floor, Rose turned to look at the man she would be sitting beside for the duration of the flight. "Oh, my gosh! Jack Dawson, I can't believe it's you!"

"Rose DeWitt-Bukater! You were the last person I was expecting to see on a flight from San Francisco to Philadelphia!"

"Same here," she said with a huge grin on her face. "I can't believe this! It's been years since I've seen you. Wasn't it on graduation?"

"Yeah, it was. My parents dragged me away after that. I tried to get in touch with you after that but I lost your address and I couldn't remember your phone number."

"No problem. Same with me, though I think my mother threw them away so I couldn't keep in touch with you. She never liked you. She always wanted me to date Caledon Hockley, but there was something about that guy I never liked."

"I still remember your mother's eyes every time I came over to your house. Like ice." Jack thought for a moment. "You know, I heard from someone that Cal is in jail for abusing his wife or something like that."

"Doesn't surprise me that he was already married and that he abused his wife. Seems to me that jail is where he belongs."

"Yeah," Jack replied. "So, do you live in San Francisco?"

"Yeah, I live and work here. How about you?"

"I do too. I almost can't believe we never ran into each other before!"

"It's pretty amazing," she replied with a slight smile.

Suddenly the captain came over the loud speaker. "Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. Sorry about the delay, but we will be getting on our way. Please turn your full attention to the flight attendants as they demonstrate how to use the safety devices in the plane. Thank you."

Jack and Rose smiled at each other, then looked forward to the flight attendant.

Some time later...

"Rose, when you said I would spend my life drawing, you weren't kidding. Getting that job at Brown's Advertising has done me a world of good. I can do what I enjoy all the time and get paid good money for it."

"And when you said I would spend my life with my fingers glued to a computer keyboard, you were right. I work for the San Francisco Times as a journalist. Well, not really. I just design the layout for the paper and send it to print. I like it and the money's not really bad either."

"Rose," Jack said a few minutes later, turning toward Rose. "I really regret how our relationship ended up. I do. I really loved you and to be honest I can't say I ever stopped."

"Jack," Rose said, slightly shocked. "I don't know what to say. I never would have even thought you would have feelings for me after all this time." She laid her hand on his. "I can honestly say I feel the same way you do, Jack. It was just a weird feeling I had when we were going in high school. That we belonged together."

"Yeah, I had the same feeling. I should have told you about it. I mean you honestly can't believe how heartbroken I was when we left and when I discovered I had lost my last connection to you. I moped until my parents threatened to do something drastic to snap me out of it."

"Yeah, I was so upset, too. Mother tried to set me up with Cal to make me feel better, but he tried to feel me up that night and he ended up getting a cup of coffee in his pants." Rose grinned evilly.

"I would have loved to have seen that. I bet you loved doing it."

She leaned closer to him. "Oh, you know it. Almost as much as I love doing this..." She closed the remaining distance between them and kissed him, the same fire that had fueled their passion when they were in high school rushing back at that instant. Rose ran her hand up Jack's chest to rest on his cheek as Jack's hand ran from her cheek to run through her fiery curly red hair.

"Can I get you something to...oh my..."

Jack and Rose pulled apart to look up, smiling sheepishly at the flight attendant. It would be a long flight.