Chapter Four

"Ryan, where have you been? " Kirsten, Sandy and Seth are waiting for Ryan in the kitchen and Ryan winces at the tone in Kirsten's voice.

"Dude, I tried to cover for you," Seth begins.

"Seth, bed, now..." Kirsten orders.

"Okay, okay," Seth holds his hands up, "but if I can just say in Ryan's defense at least he doesn't have to worry about getting her pregnant."

"Goodnight Seth," Sandy adds.

"I feel asleep, it was nothing," Ryan states as soon as Seth has left the kitchen, but he can see the shadow of his adoptive brother just outside of the doorway. "The rumors got to be to much so I took her home, but her parents are still out of town so we hung out for awhile. We fell asleep watching TV."

Ryan watches both Kirsten and Sandy sigh, he can tell they almost wish it was worse because they don't know how to punish him for helping out a friend going through a hard time. "Ryan..." Sandy begins but trails.

"Just don't make a habit of it," Kirsten adds, "there are already enough rumors going around about the two of you without people seeing you leave her house at all hours of the night."

"Okay," Ryan nods and begins to walk away.

"Ryan," surprisingly it's Sandy who stops him front getting any further away.

"Yeah?" Ryan half turns to face them.

"I realize she's your friend and she's in some trouble, but she's a big girl and you have to make sure you concentrate on your life. Don't let her take up all your time."


"You want to help, I realize that, I'm just offering you some advice. Don't let it take over your life, because I know you and you want to help Anna..."

"It's not like I'm going to drop out of school to help her raise her baby or something Sandy," Ryan responds maybe a bit edgier then it should have come out.

"Why don't we all just get some sleep?" Kirsten suggests, "it's late and it's been a long day. If need be we can talk about it more in the morning."

"You spent the night at Anna's?" Summer and Marissa corner Ryan almost from the moment that he walks into the hallways.

Shooting a typical Ryan Atwood glance at Seth, "it's not like that."

"Okay in my defense they drug it out of me," Seth responds.

"That's such a lie Cohen," Summer responds.

"Thanks Summer," Seth glares.

"Thanks Seth," Ryan echoes continuing away from the group and toward his hallway.

"So what's going on with the two of you?" Marissa questions as all three trail behind him.

"Nothing's going on with us, we're friends," Ryan states twirling his combination lock.

"Yeah," Seth states, "but I'm friends with Anna and I didn't fall asleep at her house last night. Or any night since she's been back."

"We're just friends," Ryan responds harshly jerking out his books, "why is Anna and my relationship everyone's favorite topic lately?"

"Well, it's just that when she was here before you guys weren't exactly best friends and lately you've been spending every free moment with her," Marissa states.

"Well, I don't see any of you going out of you way to be friendly with her," Ryan retorts, "did you ever think that she may need friends? That the position she is in now is scary and to have at least one friend go out of their way for her might mean something to her since the rest of her friends in Newport seem to have abandoned her. She sits at home all alone all day and the only time I know of that you've talked to her was at the party last night." With his words Ryan slams his locker shut and walks away from the group.

"Ryan..." Summer begins but she falls silent as the three stare after Ryan.

"Hey guys, what's going on?" Zach approaches the silent group and he receives no response as Marissa and Seth walk in opposite directions. "Was it something I did?" Zach questions.

Summer shakes her head sadly, "no, Ryan just called us out on what sucky friends we've been to Anna since she's been back."

"Bad friends?" Zach asks, "why does he say that? You guys seemed alright at the party yesterday."

"We just haven't gone out of our way to hang out with her and stuff," Summer hugs her books to her chest.

"That doesn't mean you've been bad friends," Zach supplies, "just busy."

"You don't understands," Summer shakes her head, "you don't know Anna. She'd go out of her way for anyone, it's just the type of person she is, and she's not the type to ask for anyone's help. We should be there for her but we haven't been." Summer sighs, "anyway, I have class. I'll see you later."

"Summer, Marissa, um what are you guys doing here?" Anna looks obviously shocked to see Marissa and Summer at her front door after school.

"We're kidnaping you," Marissa states.


"Ryan pointed out to us that we've been sucky friends," Summer admits, "and we feel horrible for that. So we thought, what's the best way to make it up to Anna, one of our closest friends?"

"And we came up with the perfect conclusion. We're kidnaping you for the rest of the day, we're going to do some shopping, a new maternity shop just opened in the mall and we thought we'd check that out. Then head over to the melting pot and gets some dessert-y type foods, then manicures and pedicures and then rent tons of movies and head back to Sum's house for a movie night. What do you say?"

Anna grins, "how could I say no to that."

"Exactly our thought," Summer grins, "you can't."

"You know," Marissa states as she, Summer and Anna are rest comfortably in the massaging pedicure chairs, "we really are sorry for not being around."

Anna waves her freshly painted bright pink nails, "Ryan shouldn't have said that you have. I understand that you have been busy, the thought never occurred to me that you haven't been good friends. Ryan shouldn't have said that," she repeats with a roll of her eyes.

"Maybe not in the way he did," Summer replies, "but what he said wasn't a lie. But we're going to be here for you, for anything. We may not be the experts at being pregnant but if you just need someone to talk to we want you to know that you can come to us."

Anna nods, "I do, thanks."

Marissa bites her lower lip, "you know you can talk about the babies father, it's good to talk about things..."

"Marissa!" Summer stares at her oldest friend shocked that she'd been so up front about the question. "Maybe she is talking to someone about it."

"Actually, I'm not," Anna responds and then sighs, "maybe it is time to get it off my chest." The other two remain silent, not wanting to pressure Anna into saying anything she wasn't ready to say yet. But after a short pause she says, "I told him the day I found out. Not by choice though, he showed up at my house to surprise me when I hit the stage of being angry that I'd been stupid enough to get pregnant. Probably 45 minutes after I'd taken all five of the tests. I kind of lost it. There was a lot of yelling, and I'm not exactly sure but I think I threw a book at him."

The pedicurists seem as interested as Marissa and Summer in the story but this doesn't really seem to bother Anna as she continues. "So after that I didn't see Damien for like a week, my aunt and uncle had found the boxes and called my parents and it was a whirlwind of what I was going to do and I wasn't in school. By the time it was decided that I would be moving back to California when school let out, they're on year round school back there, it had been a week since I'd told Damien. After school on my first day back Damien asked me to come off campus with him after lunch, he said we needed to sit down and have a real conversation about it.

"So we did. Damien informed me that I needed to have an abortion and not tell anyone and we'd just go on like nothing had happened. He told me that he was graduating in June, then he'd be going to Yale and then law school to go into business with his father. Then he told me that nothing was going to get in the way of that. So when I told him that I had no intention of having an abortion he didn't even skip a beat when he told me that I'd be alone in this because he wouldn't be involved. That when the baby was born he'd be signing papers to terminate his parental rights, no matter what I decided to do."

"What an ass!" Summer exclaims.

Anna shrugs but everyone can see the tears in her eyes, "it was his choice, I can't change his mind about that."

"Anna," Marissa frowns and then both she and Summer get out of their chairs, half painted toes curled upward as they hug the blonde.

"Boys suck," Anna laughs when she's bombarded.

Once Summer and Marissa are in their chairs again Summer states, "if I ever seen the jerk I'll kick his ass!"

Anna nods, "okay, I think you could take him."