Hey everyone I'm in the process of completing the next instalment of 'Driving Lessons' but have been wanting to write this piece for months. So I've finally got around to it! This is based around one of my favourite songs by the brilliant Adele. This song always reminded me of the Angela/Jordan relationship and it is one I could totally see playing in the background of a future reunion between them. Hope you enjoy it, again it's a little different for my usual stuff. It's a little heavy at the start but wait for the twist! It alternates between Angela's thoughts and Jordan.

Bye for now

-RedCatCatalano

The news of your return reaches me a long time before I see you. I'm sitting at my desk in work when Rayanne texts me.

"The prodigal son returns" and I know. You've come back. Finally after seven years of wondering what happened to you when you'd disappeared into the night after graduation, you were just back. It was a strange concept to me, something I'd always hoped for never believed would actually happen. I don't run to see you, I can't. Too much time has passed for me to fall back into foolish habits, but I wonder. Do you remember me? Do you lie awake at night wondering like me what would have happened if you'd stayed, or if I'd made it to the gas station in time to join you? But we can never change the past. Fate it always seems has it's own plans for us, placing obstacles in our paths ,to make our choices impossible to carry out. I never made it in time to find you because Rayanne went into labour with Corey's bastard seed and you couldn't wait the extra five minutes it took me to get there. You left thinking no one gave a shit about you, that I'd spurned your heartfelt offer of escape. But I had shown up, bag in hand, five minutes too late to sail off into the sunset and to the great unknown. Then you were gone, without another word or trace and with you, you'd taken most of my heart. But life moved on regardless. I went to college, got a job and learned to live a life without the presence of Jordan Catalano.

Over the weeks that follow your return ,the gossip grows all around the small town, especially among the girls you'd once kissed and gave false promises of fidelity to. They speak of you in harsh, sharp insults and take pleasure in how they'd always known you'd crawl back here, your tail between your legs as an utter failure. I grit my teeth and try not to listen as they postulate cruelly on why you were back. News from girls like Cynthia Hargreves is kinder, and that's where I hear the first real truths about your return.

I heard that you're settled down,

That you found a girl and you're married now' .

Cynthia tells me you swapped your red , trusty car for a reliable silver minivan and you're living with a mysterious and beautiful brunette in a cute little three bed near the high school. She says the girl is small and flawless, shy but perfectly lovely and polite. People say how happy you seem, still the same slightly dopey and awkward Jordan, but now self-assured and contented. Though I am happy that you have found some kind of peace in this world, I can't help the ache that grows in my chest when I hear. Especially when Cynthia tells me about the little boy. The small dark haired boy with the ethereal blue eyes and elfin features. I hear about you bringing him to Mrs Hannigan's preschool not far from my house from Rayanne. She tells me his name is Matthew and he's friends with her younger son Hunter. No one else knows much else about the situation ,only that it is of no doubt he is of your blood. And with this revelation, the last remaining parts of my heart shatters like glass.

I heard that your dreams came true,

Guess she gave you things I didn't give to you.

A little while later I learn from Shane, through Rayanne of course, that you've set up a garage just off the Lincoln street. It's in that old converted warehouse , the place where at one time I know you used to hide out from your alcoholic father and addict of a step mom . The same place you'd taken Rickie that terrible Christmas he'd found himself homeless. Most importantly, it's the place where Tino had held the pre-graduation party that you'd told me your plan. That simple proposal to just get in your car and drive until the ghosts of Three Rivers no longer chased you. I'd listened intently to you talk so uncharacteristically impassioned about it. I was still so wrapped up in you and your world, even after I'd insisted that we only ever be friends after the letter fiasco. That night you asked me to join you, that we both needed to escape it all. When I asked you why me and not Shane, you gave me that small, enigmatic smile I had rarely seen on Jordan Catalano. Then you'd replied in your quiet, husky voice.

"Come with me and you'll find out".

After that I let you kiss me, totally caught in the moment and you seemed happy. I know I certainly was. You'd grinned cockily while I'd beamed goofily up at you and for a brief time there was hope for us. You drove me home afterwards and you asked me to come with you again before I left the car. I said I'd think about it and you beamed again, telling me the time and place. I gave you a smile in return, already knowing deep down I'd go. But unfortunately that was the last time I saw you, except from brief glimpses at the graduation ceremony. I never did get my answer why you only wanted me for company, but I often wonder in nostalgic hope what the reason might have been. I had always thought about asking Shane where you were, but then decided that cutting the ties in their entirety was in your best interest. It wasn't fair to drag you back here. So I let you become who you were always meant to be.

The garage ,I'm told is doing well. There is a steady stream of cars in through your doors and very quickly ,the snarky side comments of you being a failure, dissipate. I am proud that you're succeeding in your venture, but I'm not really surprised. Whatever you had lacked in academic prowess in high school, you had always made up for with an innate understanding of the engines of cars . A savant of the mechanical world and a veritable genius with a wrench. Even the critical Brian Krakow, Three River's fresh out of Yale attorney at Law, says you're the best mechanic west of Philadelphia. Soon the once haughty smirks of your bitter ex-lovers disappear in disappointment and their hostilities are turned to a new target.

Old friend, why are you so shy?

Ain't like you to hold back or hide from the light,

You keep to yourself in those first few months and initially I'm a little hurt you don't come looking for me. But I can't blame you either, the past is the past. I don't seek you out for the same reasons you probably don't find me, some things are meant to remain behind us. Still, I long to see your face, to catch up and discover what you did for so long. Maybe I need to see you Jordan Catalano to reconcile this new responsible version of you ,to the directionless but sweet boy that left seven years ago. We were once so close that it bothers me that now we're practically strangers. Sometimes I find myself drifting to the prospect of our inevitable meeting and I replay the scenario over and over, planning exactly what I'll say.

I hate to turn up out of the blue uninvited,

But I couldn't stay away, I couldn't fight it

When I finally do see you it's a shock to the system, the situation comes out of nowhere, blindsiding me. I'm sitting in my usual booth in the diner, correcting some 10th graders idea of an English essay when you waltz in. Everything I ever wanted to say to you leaves my head, and all I can do is watch you across the small distance in awe . Like I don't believe it's actually you in front of me after so long. Your hair is short and tactfully dishevelled to give the illusion of bed head Your lower face covered by a light layer of stubble, but I know it's you instantly. Jordan Catalano still so fresh faced and captivatingly beautiful, barely looking like you've aged a single day. Butterflies begin to flutter in my stomach as I watch transfixed. Smiling happily to yourself as you carry a little boy. You both take up a seat by the counter while you chat about something. The little boy is gorgeous with depthless blue eyes and even more delicate features than you . He smiles up at you, and you gaze down at him in affection. This simple exchange of love makes my chest ache and I can't fully explain why. I hear the door of the diner opens again and a woman walks across to you both. This is the girl everyone had been talking about, and it's not difficult to see why. She is petite and dark haired, with more natural grace then I could ever hope to achieve. She's younger than I thought she'd be, no more than twenty two and still so childlike in her movement somehow. The two of you exchange a warm smile as she reaches you and the boy. I can see in the azure of your eyes how deeply you care for this girl and make me feel so incredibly sad, like if lost something I never knew I still wanted to keep. I am so caught up in my own misery I don't notice your eyes shifting from the girls face onto mine. Your eyes grow wide and your mouth is partially open in obvious surprise as you stare at me.

I had hoped you'd see my face,

And that you'd be reminded that for me it isn't over

My breathe catches in my throat as our eyes meet and I'm frozen to the spot. Seconds stretch on endlessly as we stare at one another, neither of us moving. The little kid pulls at the sleeve on your jacket and you snap out it. Whispering something in the girls ear, you suddenly take a step towards me. I squirm uncomfortably as I realise what's happening, I hastily shove student's papers into my bag. The short walk seems never-ending as you make your way across, this terrified look on your face. I attempt a smile to try hide the nervousness I feel being in your presence again. Stopping just in front of my table you smile back uneasily.

"Hey" you say softly as you pull at the sleeves on your jacket uncomfortably, your eyes flick from my mine to the floor for a second in shyness. The tone of your voice is friendly despite the obvious awkwardness.

"Hi" I say back, matching your amiable manner.

"What are doing here?" you say a little more assuredly, placated by the attempts normalcy.

"This place has the best chocolate sundaes in town, I always have one on Friday to help me get through all the work I have to finish ." I say a little wryly as I lift up my satchel of English assignments for a second. You nod and give me an understanding grin.

"You're a teacher right?" you ask with interest. I nod back with a smile.

"Yeah, I'm a high school English teacher. So glamorous." I say with a slight laugh. You grin at me, relaxing visibly by the small expression of sarcasm.

"Hey I'm a mechanic, that's not exactly the high life either. English teacher you say? I think it suits you." You reply with a warm smile and my inside melt a little.

"Thanks. From what I hear, your doing very well for yourself in that new place you set up." Your eyebrows rise up and this cocksure look crosses your face.

"Have you been checking up on me?" you say teasingly. I can feel my face filling with heat in embarrassment.

"No" I say a little gruffly "it's just things I heard". You keep smirking at me and I can't help but blush more brightly.

"Sure." you say with a laugh. Nothing else is said for a few seconds, like we're trying to fully digest that we are actually in one another's company. Your eyes grow serious and the original light hearted mood disappears.

"So if you knew I was around, how come you haven't been over to say hi or something?" you say almost hurt.

"I could ask you the same question. I know Shane probably told you I was working at Liberty High." I say sorely. You shrug and stare down at the floor ashamedly.

"I was busy" you saw unhappily.

"I can see that" I reply a little more bitterly than I'd intended, looking over your shoulder at the young mother and son. You frown at me in confusion over my sourness. Neither of us say anything else for a moment.

Suddenly the little boy is beside you, pulling at the leg of your pants.

"I need go potty. Mommy says gotta take me" his sweet voice begs. You give the little kid a big smile a reach down to pick him up. I get a good look at the child now, he's no more than four years old and is as cute as a button.

"In a minute buddy. I want you to meet a friend of mine first. Matthew this is Angela, Angela this is Matthew". The little boy stretches out a tiny, sticky hand and I take it gladly.

"Hello L'Angela, nice to meet you" Matthew says politely

"Nice to meet you too Matthew" I smile kindly .

"You're pretty like my mommy, but your hair is yellow" Matthew says matter-factly, watching me with his large, blue eyes.

"Thank you very much young man, you're very handsome too." I say happily. My eyes shift up to yours again, and I'm met with a contented, approving gaze.

"Say …how about you join us for dinner if your not too busy?" you say cheerfully. I look back behind us to the beautiful brunette watching us with careful interest and hesitate. The thought of sitting with you and your happy little family, makes me so low I can't bear it.

"Maybe another time….." I say despondently. Your face crumples in disappointment.

"Why not now?" you say touchily.

"I just don't think it would be appropriate…..considering our history and that I haven't met your 'friend' " I reply pointedly as I pick my bag up and slide out of the booth. You arch a dark eyebrow at me, obviously puzzled by my answer.

"It was really nice seeing you again, I hope I see you guys around" I say softly taking one last look at Jordan Catalano, my first love and man I can never have again. The person that I've tried for the best part of a decade to replace, but so far have come up short. I'm unable to stop the lump that forms in my throat, knowing my eyes are about to well up.

"Good luck Catalano" I add longingly and turn my heel before you can say another word to stop me.

Nevermind, I'll find someone like you,

I wish nothing but the best for you, too,

Don't forget me, I beg, I remember you said,

"Sometimes it lasts in love,

But sometimes it hurts instead

,Sometimes it lasts in love,

But sometimes it hurts instead, yeah.

I'm not even half a block down the street when I hear footsteps running behind me.

"Angela!" I hear you call . I stop in my tracks and hastily swipe at the tears that have managed to break through my defences. Your face is full of hurt confusion when I turn back towards you, I blush knowing my eyes are probably bright pink. Your face softens and you slow to stop directly in front of me.

"Angela, why'd you run off? Did I do something wrong?" you ask concerned, your magnetic blue eyes scrutinising me. I shake my head.

"Not at all….I just needed to go. I've got stuff to do" I say meekly. I can see in your eyes you don't believe me. We just stand there for a second, unsure of what to say next.

"If I didn't do something wrong, why are you so upset?" you ask with a slight suspicion after a beat. I shrug and avoid your gaze.

"I'm fine…it's just so overwhelming seeing you again. Your family's beautiful by the way" I say quietly. Your face brightens again and you smile proudly.

"Thanks. Matthew's my little ray of sunshine". I feel another kick to my gut and a part of me wishes that the child you talk about so excitedly were mine too. That it was me that you went home to every night, stinking of oil and gas, but blissfully happy in our simple, normal life. You must have seen the pain in my face that I couldn't hide ,because your eyes grow worried again.

"Are you sure you're okay". I smile weakly and will my response to be even slightly believable.

"Yeah, I've just had a crappy week. Uncooperative students and all that." You just nod, but the frown doesn't leave your handsome face. The silence between us is uncomfortable. There is so much to be said between us, but the timing seems off, like we're too late or something. I sigh deeply, swallowing the last of my hurt deep down within me.

"You better be going back to your son before he gets anxious." I say simply. Your eyebrows knit in bewilderment.

"Eh…..you do you know Matthew is my nephew right?". I don't even think before I ask the next question.

"So that girl…" I blurt out.

"She's my sister Georgia, well half-sister. When I went out West ,I looked up my Mom in California but found her instead". I immediately feel like a gigantic idiot as the pieces of the puzzle fall into place. I suddenly see in my mind the girls face, the cornflower blue eyes and high cheekbones, the chocolate brown hair and small, delicate frame. Of course she's your sister.

I am so frikkin' stupid.

"Oh…I heard…something different" I mutter bashfully, utterly humiliated. The frown on your face disappears, as you slowly grasp what was bothering me.

"Wait you thought Georgia was my girlfriend? Were you jealous or something?" you laugh teasingly. My face feels on fire as I go red in embarrassment.

"No" I say sheepishly, totally unconvincing in my retort. You smirk at me cockily, like you know exactly what's going on inside my head.

"Yeah okay if you say so" you say mockingly with a grin. I shift self-consciously under your gaze, utterly humiliated by my own transparency.

"Would you like to meet her?" you say suddenly, the teasing tone now absent from your voice. I'm a little taken aback my your invitation and don't respond straight away.

"She doesn't really know anyone here properly, she's kind of shy and none of the girls have really been that welcoming. I can't blame them considering my high school rep, but she could use a friend though." You look at me pleadingly. I smile sweetly to sooth your apprehension.

"Sure why not. I've got nowhere to be right now". As we both turn to walk back to the diner, a slow, happy grin stretches across your mouth.

"What happened to 'I've got stuff to do'? " you retort mischievously as we walk side by side. I roll my eyes at you.

"Oh shut up".

"So can we hang out again ,now you know I'm single" you tease once more. Sending you my best withering glare I shove you lightly.

"Jordan shut up."


You know how the time flies,

Only yesterday was the time of our lives,

As you and Georgia instantly fall into step with one another, I can't help but smile. It's like the two of you have been friends for years and not the grand total of a single hour. Matthew loves you too and the whole atmosphere between all four of us is so light-hearted, it's hard to consider that's things were not always this way. You notice me staring at you and give me that shy, half-smile that always used to drive me wild, it still does now. You are even more pretty then I remembered. It's not just you've grown into your looks, but you now have the confidence to match your beauty. Your hair is a honey blond and your eyes seem a brighter green, less innocent but still so full of curiosity. It takes me a while to digest it all, that we're actually sitting in each other's company like we've never spent any time apart at all. It certainly doesn't feel like seven years. Angela Chase, the girl that broke my heart, sits opposite me so nonchalantly it almost unnerves me.

We were born and raised in a summer haze,

Bound by the surprise of our glory days

When I left Three River, I never stopped thinking about you. I tried to hate you for not leaving with me, but I couldn't. So I tried to forget instead, to wash you from my mind. But it never worked. No matter how many rivers I crossed, so many states I stopped counting, your ghost always seemed to follow me. So for seven years I learned to live with it and I was resigned to the fact that you'd always be in some small part of my heart. Sometimes I'd lie awake night wondering what you were doing. Mostly I'd think of why'd you'd never come to the gas station that night, what had stopped you? I'd felt so sure that you'd ride off into the summer sunset with me and we'd find our own way into adulthood together driving West. When you'd let me kiss you the night of Tino's party ,I thought that maybe I had another shot to win you over. That maybe this time it could work. You had asked me why I wanted you to come with me and not Shane. I was going to tell that night we were leaving, and perhaps one day I'll tell you the answer if ask again.

I hate to turn up out of the blue uninvited,

But I couldn't stay away, I couldn't fight it

When I came back to Pennsylvania you were the first person I asked Shane about. I was overjoyed when I heard you were an English teacher, everything about it seemed right. You had helped me to finally learn again and actually graduate as a kid, it was fitting that you became a teacher. I hear your sharing a house with Sharon just off main street and I can't help but think it's all perfect. Like this was how things were meant to be. I wait to see if you'd come looking for me, knowing my return with a kid and mysterious woman was sure to cause the gossip mill to go into overdrive. I knew someone would tell you I was back, probably Rayanne or even Cynthia. But you never arrived at my doorstep. I saw many familiar faces, Brian, Rayanne, Sharon, Rickie, everyone but the one I actually wanted to see. I didn't go looking for you either, too afraid you'd reject even my simple offer of tentative friendship. I suspected you were afraid to find me for the exact same reason, so sure I hated you. Maybe it was better to let the past lie, but still I wondered about you. And just as I began to believe you were actively avoiding me, I turned around in Tyler's diner to see you staring directly at me. And in that second everything came rushing back to me.

I had hoped you'd see my face,

And that you'd be reminded that for me it isn't over

At the start everything went better than I'd ever thought our reunion would go. It was clear you were just as happy to see me as I was to see you, but soon you were looking at me uncomfortably. I couldn't figure why you were suddenly so reluctant to be in my company. Why had you abruptly just taken off? Even more I couldn't understand why'd you looked at Matthew with such sadness in your eyes, like you were resolved to some inescapable fate or something .Nothing made sense at all, so I found myself running out of the diner in the wake of your departure. After waiting to see you again for so long I couldn't let you walk out of my life without an explanation. When the answer came, that you'd thought Matthew was my son and Georgia my girlfriend, it gave me hope. Your attempt at avoiding me had been caused by the belief that our friendship would be inappropriate, not that you didn't want to be friends again. Once I set the record straight it was like a huge weight was lifted off your shoulders and when the realisation you'd been jealous hit me, I felt optimistic. You still cared about me, that much was crystal clear. And with that revelation ,I felt so happy it was impossible not smile in your company and fall into old habits. What's more, you flirt back with me readily.

Soon Matthew is wriggling in his seat and groaning about being bored. He yawns widely and is obviously tired. Georgia sighs in disappointment, wanting to talk to you for a little longer. You're her first real friend in months since we moved here and it's clear she likes you.

"Looks like this little guy wants to go home." you say sweetly as Matthew nods in agreement.

"I wanna go an watch toons with fuzzy bear" he moans. I'm just as reluctant to leave as Georgia, but I know deep down that's not the last we'll see of you Angela by a long shot.

"We better be taking him home now, it's nearly his bed time." Georgia says humourlessly. You reach into your purse and produce a pen. Writing on a spare napkin, you hand Georgia your cell number.

"I'm not doing anything tomorrow if you want to me up? I could introduce you to some of the girls and show you around properly. Just give me a call later tonight maybe?" you say warmly and Georgia grins at the prospect.

"Sure. That would be great!" she says excitedly. I send you a quick smile of thanks and you wink back as Georgia is distracted by the sudden need to write down her number too, You reach into your satchel and take out your phone.

"I'm just going to call someone to come collect me, I'll be back in a sec."

"Where's your car?" I ask. You shrug.

"Danielle borrowed it this morning to go to Phillie. She should be back now." you say simply, turning to leave again.

"You don't need to call Danielle. I'll drive you home." I find myself saying.

"But your house is like five minutes away and mine's on the other side of town." you reply suddenly. You blush as you become conscious of what you've said, revealing you know exactly where we live. I smirk but say nothing.

"Jordan can drop us off first and then bring you home" Georgia suggests earnestly. You hesitate but looking between mine and my sister's hopeful faces and you nod.

"Alright"

Nothing compares,

No worries or cares,

Regrets and mistakes, they're memories made,

Who would have known how bittersweet this would taste?

After I leave Georgia and Matthew home, a comfortable silence falls among us. Riding along the long forgotten streets of Three Rivers in old Red ,the whole situation is achingly familiar. For a second I'm seventeen and you're fifteen, and everything is possible again. A time when being with one another was all that mattered. It makes me a little cheerless when I think of what could have been.

"I'd heard you'd gotten a mini van" you say unexpectedly with a smile.

"Oh please…..me with a mini van. Whoever's been feeding you information is an idiot" I say wryly. You grin back with that wide goofy smile I've always loved.

"In retrospect I probably shouldn't believe everything Cynthia tells me is true" you chuckle.

"Never ever listen to Cynthia" I laugh too. My smirk grows into a smile but I don't add another comment. The silence falls in the car again and we're both lost in our own thought. I see out of the corner of my eye your smile slipping a little.

"Jordan, what made you come back to Three River's?" you ask softly just as I stop in front of your house. I sigh before I answer.

"I guess…I just thought it was time to come home." It is true despite wanting to escape this place for so long ,there came a time when I realised, there was no where else in the world that I called home. They always say home is where the heart is and I guess I'd left my heart behind in Three Rivers. You nod and look at me with interest.

"Where'd you go?" you say softly again. I lean back in my seat as I think.

"Ohio, Iowa, Oregon, California. Basically anywhere Red would take me. I did odd jobs for money till I found Georgia in Santa Barbara" A mischievous look enters your eyes before you speak.

"Did you ever make snow?" you smile.

"Snow?" I ask confused.

"Yeah…..like those guys up in the mountains, You told me you really wanted to do that." you say with a laugh. I blush a little as I remember saying it now. What had possessed me to say something so goddamn stupid? Make snow! I'm such an idiot.

"Eh no…they had enough snow makers in Colorado when I was there" I say dryly. You grin again and I blush a little deeper.

"Their loss, you would have made excellent snow" you laugh.

I roll my eyes and grin back at you.

Then for the first time since I'd seen you this afternoon I feel this undeniable tension between us, like there is so much for us to talk about. I become acutely aware we are alone and how, if I'd found myself in this situation as boy, I would have leaned over to kiss you to avoid the inevitable awkward conversation. But I can't just jump you, as much as I really, really want to. You must have had the same realisation as me, because you begin to shift uncomfortably in the next seat.

"So how come Georgia left Santa Barbara with you?" you say simply, trying to steer us away from the embarrassed atmosphere.

" Matthew's father left them and she couldn't support herself anymore. I was all she had and I guess she wanted the chance to start again, you know, get away from where everyone knew her." I reply sullenly.

"Did people not like her or something?" you ask with concern.

"Thank to all the shit Johnny, Matt's father ,spread everyone believed she was whore. I wish I could have gotten a chance to sock that guy in his damn mouth, but the slime ball skipped town." I try to stop myself from getting angry but have to grip the steering wheel roughly to calm myself.

"Why would anyone ever think that about Georgia? She's so wonderful." you gasp.

"Not everyone is as open minded as you. People are all too ready to believe the worst of pretty, young , single mothers" I reply honestly. You shake your head in disbelief.

"Well that's not going to happen here, I'm not going to let it. Everyone's going to love her" you say fiercely. I give you this bemused look and your face flushes as you realise you've gotten a little carried away. I'm at loss as what to say next. The tension seems to build again, but this time I don't fight it. My arm is resting on the back of your chair and you're staring up at me, your green eyes locked with mine. I'm about to lean forward to kiss you but something captures my attention.

A face appears from the curtains in the window. The young man stares out directly into the car, a deep frown on his face. It' clear he's not happy in the least by my presence. I can't help but scowl back, removing my arm from your chair. You looked a me a little confused, but following my eyes to the window you sigh in annoyance.

"Goddamn it I've told Alex to stop doing that, it's creepy." you groan.

"Is he your boyfriend or something?" I ask grumpily. You let out a huge burst of laughter.

"Alex….god no. He's Sharon's cousin and he's staying with us till June." I feel a little embarrassed now

"Oh" I say sheepishly. You continue laughing, your eyes shining happily.

"You weren't jealous or anything. Right?" you giggle.

"Nope" I reply unpersuasively ,still blushing.

"Sure" you say with an arrogant grin. A smirk breaks through the straight face I fight to retain. Looking back out to your house you sigh again unhappily.

"I better be going. Alex will stare out the window until I go inside…..he's a little overprotective sometimes." I try to hide my disappointment, but don't protest when you go to open the door. This is not the last time I'll see, I'm certain of it.

Regrets and mistakes, they're memories made,

Who would have known how bittersweet this would taste?

But you hand stops on the handle and you look at me with trepidation.

"Jordan can I tell you something?" you say uneasily. I nod but don't not say a word. Taking a deep breath you stare at the mat on the floor.

"That day you left Three Rivers….I didn't stand you up. I went to the gas station" you mumble. My heart jumps in my chest and deep rooted pain throbs within me. I don't believe you brought it up, that invisible sorrow that lies in our past

"Where were you then?" I say more bitterly than I'd intended.

"Rayanne went into labour that morning and I was late" you say despondently. Your eyes raise to mine and I know you're telling the truth.

"I was there five minutes too late."

"I'm sorry, I should have waited a little longer…" I say unhappily, realising I had been partially responsible for our separation. You shake your head.

"Don't be, whatever happens, happens. You can't fight fate".

"No you can't." I say glumly. We stay still, lost in the regrets of so long ago. I'm stuck, not knowing what do with this information that has rewritten a huge assumption I'd always had. You had never rejected me, I'd just been too ready to believe you wouldn't show. Five minutes would have been all it took to write a different future. You give me one small, sad smile and reach for the door again.

Without thinking I grasp the handle and pull it closed again. I'm leaning directly across your body, my face so close to yours I feel your breath hitch as I gaze up at you. To my surprise Angela, it's you that reacts first, leaning down and kissing me so softly I get butterflies. I kiss you back as sweetly as I can and in that moment everything is just right. Bittersweet but free of regret. You pull back and I run my thumb along your cheek.

"I missed you ever damn day. You know that?" I whisper. You smile and mirror my action, running your fingers across the line of my jaw.

"Me too". We stay like that for the longest time, just touching each other so gently. I think about kissing you again but it seems too soon to just leap into anything. Good things take time with someone like you.

"Anyway I'd better be going before Alex calls the cops" you say with a chuckle and I let go of the handle unenthusiastically.

"Yeah it's probably for the best" I sigh. You give me one more shy, sweet smile before you get out.

"Call me okay" you say hopefully.

"I will" I reply sincerely and with that you're gone.

Nevermind, I'll find someone like you,

I wish nothing but the best for you,

Don't forget me, I beg,

I remember you said,

"Sometimes it lasts in love,

But sometimes it hurts instead

I'm in a daze as I walk up the driveway to my house, fumbling with my keys. You're still in your car watching me go, your blue eyes locked on my retreating figure The whole situation doesn't seem real, like I've imagined the entire thing. I mean, did I really just kiss Jordan Catalano or am in some happy dream again. I give you a wave as I finally get the keys in the door and open it. You smile once more and start your car. I stand there until old Red is out of sight, trying to take it all in. I lean against the door overcome when I make it inside. Something hits me as I stand there, I never asked you the question that had plagued me for years. That one small important question I always wanted an answer to. I push it out my head and try to regain my senses. Sharon smiles at me when I enter the kitchen.

"Hey you, how was your day?" she says amiably. I smile back demurely.

"Oh you know…repetitive as usual"


Hours after I drop you home, my phone buzzes beside my bed and pick it up sleepily. It's from your number.

"Why did only ask me to come with you after graduation? What was the reason?" you ask. Your directness surprise me, so much so that I reply with similar frankness without a second thought.

"I was in love with you."

It takes a second for my consciousness to catch up to my sleep effected mind. I choke in terror when my brain kicks back into gear and I realise what I have just sent you. I cannot believe in my sleep induced haze I actually said that to you. My answer was a little more open then I'd ever intended. It may be truth but considering I had planned to take things slow, my declaration is a massive leap into the unknown. I count down the seconds till you reply, terrified I'd just scared you off. My heart pounds as your number flashes up on screen again.

"You want to go out sometime? Like as a date or something". I'm relieved when you don't freak out or read too much into my answer. That's what I still love about you, after all these years no one knows me better.

"Sure that would be great" I reply.

"How about tomorrow night at 8 in Let's Bolt? Meet you there?" you ask.

"Looking forward to it already J" I answer with a sudden rush of excitement.

The funny things about life is Angela Chase, people always told me there was plenty of more fish in the sea . But I've always known they were wrong. You see no one is like you. As I drift to sleep with a smile fixed to my face I realise I don't have to try find someone like you anymore. I don't have to hurt anymore, because no worries or cares compare to how you make me feel.

Nevermind, I'll find someone like you,

I wish nothing but the best for you, too,

Don't forget me, I beg, I remember you said,

Sometimes it lasts in love,

But sometimes it hurts instead,

Sometimes it lasts in love,

But sometimes it hurts instead.

I lie in my bed Jordan ,wondering and trying to figure out how my life could change so irrevocably in the span of 24 hours. I don't know what had possessed me in my semi sleeping state to ask you that question, but I'd needed an answer now more then ever before. When I kissed ,there had been no doubt in my mind that I wouldn't let you go this time. When I get your text in response ,it sends me reeling into a totally new stratosphere of delight. You tell me you had been in love with me, yet I'm not entirely surprised, like deep down I'd always known .It makes me happier than I'd thought possible, terrified and at the same time elated. Knowing you'd probably sent it on an impulse, I decide not to make a big deal of it. You know, gush uncontrollably or something. Good things take time. Because honestly I had been in love with you too, and I still am .

And here we are again, on the cusp of some great new adventure together. People had always told me that young love often never lasts, that all it did was hurt and scar us. But I have found, with someone like you Jordan, it endures and survives. Nothing compares to this, no worries or cares, regrets and mistakes, none of them matter now. They're all in the past. As I close my eyes finally to sleep the most contented sleep I'd ever had, I think about the future. Maybe this time we can have it all.