Hey, this is my first In the Heights story. This is just a spin on the song Breathe.

Hope you like!

And I don't own anything In the Heights obviously


Nina stood on the streets where she grew up. It felt weird going back, but also sweet. Bittersweet.

She didn't know how to face her family. So she decided to call her one and only friend from college, Anna. After putting quarters in the payphone, she sat and waited for an answer.

"Hello?" Anna said.

"It's me," Nina replied.

"Oh, hey! Sounds like you got home safe. Is everything alright?"

"Not really. I don't know how I can go in and see my parents and not...not feel like such a screw up."

"Don't say that," Anna scolded.

"No, seriously," Nina continued. "Like, here I am, on my old street. I look around and see all the proud faces. Everyone's acting all nice and sweet, just the way they did when I left in the first place. How can I tell them all that happened while I was away? I'm just a huge disappointment. Welcome home, Nina."

"Lighten up. Your family and friends love you. You just have to go in there and give it your best shot."

"But what happened to me? This city used to be mine. Back then, they all waved and said hey, it'll be fine. But that seems like such a long time ago. What am I supposed to say to? Hey, I'm home?"

"That's a pretty good start," Anna admitted.

A woman across the street noticed her and waved, shouting "Nina!" Nina smiled and waved back, shouting Hey as well. "I mean, they're obviously not worried about me at all," she said. "I'm the one they're counting on to succeed, to make a difference. I always worked the hardest. I thought I was destined for Stanford, but maybe I should have just stayed home."

"What do you mean?" Anna asked.

"Well, when I was younger I climbed to the highest place on every fire escape, and still wanted to go higher, never afraid and always ready for a challenge. I got all the scholarships, I had to save up all my money to be the first one in the this whole place to go to college. How am I supposed to tell them why I'm back?"

"Why don't you start with the truth?"

Nina laughed. "I can't...I have to...I have to straighten up, smile at all the neighbors. Pretend everything's cool. When they ask about school, I'll just...say...there were lots of tests, lots of papers. Then I'll smile and wave goodbye."

"And then...?"

"Oh, god! What will my parents say?" Nina asked hysterically. "Can I really go in there and say I know that I'm letting you down?" Her grandmother called to her from the window. "That's my abuela. I have to go."

"Alright," Anna said. "I'll talk to you soon. And Nina? Just breathe."