Josh stared at the ceiling. He hadn't moved since she left. That was more than three hours ago. He couldn't bring himself to move. All he could think about was her, and what his life was going to be like without her. He had promised her that they would be okay and that they would never be alone, but he wasn't so sure anymore. He couldn't stop thinking about all of the reasons he was going to miss her. Who was going to meet him in the boy's bathroom when they really should have been in class? Who was going to hang out at the Rack all afternoon with him while he was stuck working? Who was going to laugh at his stupid jokes? Who was even going to understand his stupid jokes?
"Josh," his mom sad through the door, simultaneously knocking. He didn't say anything. He just kept staring at the ceiling. His door began to open slowly and Nicole poked her head in.
"I left some pancakes for you," she said. "Or I can make you something for lunch." He didn't respond. "I could make hot dogs, your favorite."
"I'm not hungry," Josh mumbled.
Nicole opened the door fully and stepped inside the room. When she saw that he was shirtless, a little inkling of worry crept into her mind.
"We didn't do anything," Josh stated, knowing exactly what his mother was thinking.
"I didn't say you did," she replied quickly.
"No, but you were thinking it."
Nicole nodded. "You're right, I was. But, just for the record, I do trust you and Andy."
"Yeah well, you won't have to trust us anymore," Josh said.
Nicole walked over to his closet and grabbed a T-Shirt. She threw it in his direction. He put it on as Nicole took a seat at the end of his bed.
"So, how are you doing?"
"My girlfriend just left to move across the country. How do you think I'm doing?"
"Right, bad question." She sighed. She was trying to think like the psychologist she was, but the mom side of her kept pushing through. "It will get better Josh."
He sat up, leaning against his headboard.
"She just left."
"Yeah, thanks for reminding me."
"I know it's hard, but there's no easy fix. It will take time, but you and Andy will figure this out."
"And what if we don't make it? What if it's too hard?"
"Do you love her?" He nodded. "Then you'll find a way."
Josh looked over at the clock.
"Her plane leaves in forty-five minutes," he said sadly.
"She didn't want you to go to the airport?'
He shook his head. "She wanted to say goodbye here."
"And what do you want?"
He felt an unfamiliar feeling taking over his body. His eyes were beginning to water. He hadn't cried since he broke his leg in the fifth grade and yet, tears were forming. He had managed to hold back his emotions the entire time. Even through Andy's cancer and now her moving, he hadn't cried. He had tried to stay strong for Andy and for himself, but as all of his feelings and emotions of missing her began tugging at his heart, he felt a tear roll down his cheek.
He flung himself out of bed and grabbed a sweatshirt off the floor.
"Josh, what are you…"
He began to rummage under his bed for his shoes.
"We need to get to the airport."
She could feel his need to get to her, to see her one more time. As a mom who wanted nothing more than to protect her son, her heart was breaking. She couldn't even imagine what he must be feeling.
She hated to say it, but she knew she had to. "Josh, it's too late…"
"No!" He shouted, wiping at his tears. He still wanted to be strong, but he was losing the battle. "We still have…" he grabbed his shoes and looked over his bed at his clock. "Forty minutes."
"You know we would never make it to the airport in time," Nicole said quietly.
"We have to!" He yelled. He sat on the floor and pulled his shoes on, not even bothering to untie them. "I need to say goodbye. I need to be with her. I need to see her. Just one more time."
Nicole slid off the bed and knelt down in front of him on the floor. She put her hand on his shoulder.
He looked at her for the first time since she walked in the room. His lips began to quiver and he threw himself into her arms. Nicole held him, rocking him back and forth like she did when he was a child. But he wasn't crying about a skinned elbow or the newest name Lori decided to call him. He was crying because of a broken heart, which Nicole couldn't heal with a bandaid or kind words. The thought made her eyes well up with tears.
Andy sat on the hard, red, plastic chair. Her knees were hugged to her chest. She lifted the collar of the shirt she was wearing to her nose. It still smelled like him. She never wanted that smell to go away. She wasn't sure if she would ever take off his shirt again.
From the seat beside her, Jane glanced over at her. Andy simply turned her Ipod up louder and closed her eyes. She was trying to remember the morning she and Josh had spent together, wrapped in each other's arms.
A few moments passed before Andy felt a hand on her shoulder. She looked up and into her mother's eyes.
"We're beginning to board," she stated.
Even though Andy's music was turned up so loudly that she couldn't make out what exactly her mother was saying, she what she meant. It was time for her entire life to change. Andy reluctantly picked up her small carryon bag she had next to her chair. She followed her mother into line to show the flight attendant their tickets.
"Andy, you can't ignore us for a flight that takes over six hours," her mom said, pulling the earphones out of her ears.
"Yeah, try me," Andy replied, giving her the cold shoulder. It was definitely going to be a long flight, but what was going to be longer was living the rest of her life without him.
"Andy, listen to me," her mother said sternly, whirling Andy around so that they were facing each other.
"No!" Andy shouted. "You listen to me! You can pretend all you want that you're doing what's best for this family. You can say that I'll feel better in time and you know what? You're right. I will never stop loving him and I will never stop missing him, but, eventually we'll both begin to heal and learn how to make this work. But now…right now I don't want to hear it. Right now I just want to cry because I miss him. Right now I just want you to realize what you've done and to leave me alone!"
Andy went to turn back around as her mother put her hand on Andy's shoulder. Andy looked into her mother's eyes and let the tears fall. She had spent the last few day hating her mother, but at that moment she realized that she didn't hate her at all. She melted into her mother's arms and let her hold her until all of her tears had dried.
The clock read 11:01. Andy was already an hour into her flight. Josh turned away from the blinking red lights. He hadn't moved. He stared at his TV, debated on whether or not to turn it on, and then rolled onto his back. He didn't want to watch TV or help his mom clean out the hall closet as she tried to get him to do to keep his mind off things. All he wanted was to be playing G-Force with the one person who made his life complete.
There was a knock at the door.
"Go away!" He shouted.
"Okay, but I'm coming in anyway so if you're naked, I suggest you put some clothes on."
The door opened and Lori stepped inside.
"I said go away," Josh stated.
"I could, but then you'd miss all the fun and excitement." He didn't respond. He didn't care about whatever it was that Lori was planning. He just wanted her out of his room. He wanted to be alone to wallow in his own self-pity. "Don't you even want to know what's so fun and exciting?"
"Well, too bad because I'm going to tell you anyway."
"Look, Lori, I know you're just trying to cheer me up, but it's not going to work."
"Well, you know my motto, if you can't cheer someone up, get 'em drunk."
"Mom and dad went out to run some errands and, as we speak, Declan's on his way over with a case of beer. See, I told you it would be fun and exciting."
"Sorry, I'm not in the mood."
"Exactly. That's why alcohol is so great. It puts you in the mood."
"Look, I'm really not in the mood for alcohol or a sisterly talk, okay? Andy's gone and yes, I know eventually life will move on, but for right now I just want to be alone."
Lori sighed. "Okay." The doorbell rang. "That's Declan. Feel free to come down and join us if you want."
Lori nodded and walked out of the room, closing the door tightly behind her. Josh glanced over at the clock again. 11:04. He tried to guess which state Andy was probably flying over at that moment. And he wondered what she was doing. Was she listening to her music or writing in her journal or…
There was another knock on the door.
"I said I'm not in the mood!" He shouted. The knock came again. "Lori, would you please just leave me alone!" The knock grew louder the third time. Josh flung himself out of bed. He marched to the door. "Damn it, Lori…" Flinging the door open, he gasped.
"Now is that any way to speak to your girlfriend?" Andy asked. She was standing in his doorway, her hands on her hips in a perfect, Andy stance.
"You're not on a plane," he said, staring at her. He wasn't sure if what he was seeing was exactly true.
"I'm not a plane," she replied.
"Why aren't you on a plane?"
"I couldn't leave you," she whispered.
She threw herself into his arms, wrapping her legs around his waist. He hugged her tighter than he ever had before. He thought he was dreaming, but it was all too real. He could feel her, smell her, and as their lips met, taste her. As he began to wobble from the weight of them both, she let go of him and planted her feet firmly on the ground. But she didn't take her arms from around his neck. She wanted to keep that connection with him.
"What happened? How did you…your moms…why did they…"
She put her finger to his lips, quieting him. "All that matters is that I'm here."
"Let's just say I basically fell apart and cried in my mother's arms and she told me that she couldn't bear to see me in so much pain, not after all I've been through."
"So…that's it? You're not moving?"
"Well, my mother's going to fly out to Boston for a few weeks to help get the new law firm set up, but she'll be coming back."
"And you and your mom?"
"We get to stay here."
There were so many thoughts running through his mind. He wanted to make sure that this wasn't just some cruel joke.
"But what about your house and…"
"The house was never actually sold so it's still ours. Now we just have to unpack everything and put it all back."
He smiled and leaned his forehead against hers. He closed his eyes and took the moment to just feel what it was like to be with her again. He couldn't have felt more relieved or ecstatic.
"I can't believe you're really here," he said quietly, finally opening his eyes.
"Believe it," she said, kissing him lightly on the lips.
"So does this mean that your moms are going to hate me forever?"
"I don't think they can hate anyone who gives me something to live for."
They both smiled and let themselves melt into each other, knowing that nothing could ever keep them apart.
Author's Note: Alright, I know it was cheesy and it was predictable, but it was still fun to write and who doesn't love a happy ending? Anyway, I wrote this ending rather quickly because I wanted to finish this story, but I hope you still like it. I don't know when I'll have time to start my next fanfiction, but be on the lookout! Thank you for reading!