Beck Oliver was driving his truck over to Jade's house on a bright summer afternoon.
The couple had planned a dinner for their three-year anniversary for months now; it was supposed to be perfect.
Things never turn out like they're supposed to, do they?
Beck's phone buzzed in the console next to him, and he, like most teenagers, immediately picked it up and flipped it open.
Hey babe, I can't wait for our date tonight. I love you.
Beck smiled to himself; it was a rare occasion that Jade was so sentimental and sweet. He immediately began to text his reply.
I love was all he ever got to write, because as he was looking at his cell phone screen and not the road, a semi rammed into the driver's side of the car.
Jade West was beginning to get worried. Beck had told her he would pick her up at 4:30; it was now 5:15 and he hadn't shown up yet.
Worse, he hadn't called or texted her to say he was running late.
As Jade became more worried and irritable, she decided that she would call him and find out where the hell he was.
She heard three rings before a voice she didn't recognize picked up.
"Hello, Miss? Are you close with Beck Oliver? We can't find an emergency number for him in his contact list, and you're the last person to have texted him".
"…Emergency number? Someone better tell me what is going on right now!"
"Miss, I'm sorry to tell you this, but Beck Oliver was involved in a fatal car accident. It appears that he was texting at the time of impact. I'm very sorry, Miss, but he's gone. Are you able to come to the intersection of Main Street and Orange Avenue and find his parents for us?"
Jade takes a deep breath, and then says "I'll be there," and promptly hangs up.
She lets the tears stream down her face as denial takes over her body.
There is no way Beck Oliver is dead. He can't be dead, damnit! He promised her forever; he always filled his promises.
Shitfuckshitfuckshitfuck is all that runsthrough Jade's head as she guns it toward the scene of the accident.
This can't be happening…
Three days have passed; Beck's funeral is today. Jade steels herself (she is strong, she has to be) while Tori and Cat are sobbing next to Mrs. Oliver.
She doesn't care if she seems like a heartless bitch: she has no other choice but to numb herself from the pain of losing her other half.
Tori gets up and delivers some meaningless words about how stellar Beck was and how Hollywood Arts will be forever changed. She's followed by other members of the gang, and even Sikowitz commends his favorite student.
It's not until André gets up that Jade pays attention. The breath he takes before his speech is audible throughout the church.
"Beck Oliver was one of my best friends. He was laid-back, he was a fighter, and he cared about everyone. Jade West had a special place in his heart, though. Beck always told me how much he loved her, and that love for her manifested itself in many different ways".
Another deep breath.
"When Beck died, he was sending a text to Jade. I've heard the words were I and love. It was a text he never got to finish, but his love for Jade was probably his last thought. I just wish that he had pulled over before sending that text. He'd still be alive; we'd be in school today; everything would be normal. I guess that it'll never be normal again though.
"If I know Beck Oliver, I know that he'd want you all to learn from his death. I found out that sending one text while driving can equal drinking up to four beers before getting behind the wheel. So what he would probably want you all to learn is this: Don't text and drive. No text, even if it's saying I love you, is worth losing your life for. Thank you".
Jade felt the guilt encompassing her as André stepped down from the podium.
She can't be strong anymore- she breaks down and cries.
Jade doesn't know what to do anymore. The one she loves is interred in the earth, never to return again.
She listens to Almost Lover again and again, and knows that her dreams can't ever come true now.
Every day, she wakes up and the same realization hits her every time: He's gone.
Jade is mad. He promised that he'd always be with her, and he broke that promise.
Jade is sad. Sad because of broken dreams, sad because of lost hope, sad because she's lost the light in her life.
But most of all, Jade feels guilty. She knows that it was her text that caused his death, even though she couldn't have known that sending that message would have such consequences.
André and Tori show up to school hand in hand one day.
That's not what shocks Jade.
It's their thumb bands, their freaking thumb bands!
X the TXT X the TXT X the TXT.
It's like a bad mantra that reminds Jade of Beck's death, like the gang is screaming at her and blaming her for his death.
How could they be so cruel?
She faints and hits the cold hard ground- just like her soul is now.
She wakes up and the nurse looks at her in surprise and is that shame?
Jade West will not allow herself to be shamed.
However, it's all she can do not to faint again when the nurse looks at her and says, in the most sarcastic voice possible:
"Congrats, kid. You get to be a mother. Hope you know who the father is".
She hadn't been a virgin and he hadn't been a god.
Those lyrics, for some reason, ring over and over again as Jade laughs and laughs because this can't be happening to her, girls whose boyfriends are dead don't get pregnant, you silly woman.
"Wake up, sweetheart. He might be dead, but he left you with a kid to raise".
Fucking perfect. Jade West is 17, feels guilty and ostracized, and is going to become a mother.
What a lovely mess her life is going to be.
Jade names her baby boy Beckett Michael West. It's the least she can do, as voices in her head scream:
It's all your fault.
A/N: This story took a life of its own. I was going to have each individual character's grief and response to Beck's death, but this came out.
Reviews are gorgeous, as you all are. Kudos to those who get the song references.
Oh, and don't text and drive.