There was small, tense conversation in the car on the way to the ferry, but it was awkward and wet. When we got to the ferry, the boat was pulling away.

"Sorry," the boy said by the hood of the car, staring uncomfortably at his hands.

I looked back at him. "Its not your fault," I assured him.

David turned around. "So long, then." Ugh! He could be such a rude man sometimes. I'm sure Kimba wouldn't have refrained from telling him outright that he was making an ass out of himself.

The boy nodded and threw his backpack over his shoulder. "Thanks for the lift."

"Are you sure you'll be okay?" I asked, concerned for the boy.

He nodded. "Yeah, I'll survive."

"Okay then," David said. "Bye now."

"Wait," I said digging through my purse for something. I pulled my wallet out.

David scowled. "He said he'll survive."

I ignored David and walked toward the boy, pulling some cash out. I started to hand it to him.

He shook his head and waved his hand. "No, really-"

"Please. Take it."

He hesitated a moment before reluctantly conceding to my wishes.

"Be careful."

He nodded and shook my hand. "Thanks." He walked away. "See ya around."

I couldn't help but think that there was something quite odd about that boy. But odd in a good way.

"I suggest you scrub that hand with ammonia as soon as possible," David said, glaring at me.

"Why? You wanna hold it?" Fat chance. David hadn't held my hand since we were much younger. "Kimba would've liked him," I grumbled when I didn't get a reply, turning back to David.


We rented a room in a shabby little motel for the night until the ferry came back the next morning. David didn't really appreciate the adorable antique grandma's cabin atmosphere as much as I did. David was an ass as usual about the room. But while I was arguing with him over the livability of the motel room, I was worrying about Kimba.


I was having a nice dream about swimming on the beach at my mother's vacation house when I was awakened by the honking of car horns.

I jolted upright in the passenger's seat. "Ugh!" I groaned when I saw the long line of traffic in front of us.

"Sorry, kiddo," Bobbi, my best friend, said beside me. "Its gonna take a while before we get through this mess."

"Yeah, a while meaning weeks," said Derek, our other best friend (also my boyfriend) in the open back of Bobbi's big van. The blue paint on the outside was chipping away slowly, and I doubted that all this rain was helping any.

Bobbi was a girl my age with long blond hair and a friendly face.

Derek was a punk rock kid with ripped up jeans, and spiked black hair. He dressed according to his own style, not the school's uniforms. The ones Bobbi and I were wearing. Tan short-sleeve button up with a white tank underneath and an orange pleated skirt.

I made a pathetic noise, glaring out of the foggy window at the cars around us. "I bet my parents are already there, fine and dandy, sipping tea and munching dainties," I said, mimicking my mother's accent.

Though both of my parents had a slight English accent, I had none. I was adopted at the age of 3. I was already talking by 3, so I hadn't learned to pronounce my words with the slurs they used.

Derek chuckled and shook his head. Seeing that the traffic was going no where, I unbuckled and walked into the open back of the van with Derek.

He grabbed my hand and squeezed it. "We'll get there," he assured me, flashing a smile that made his green eyes crinkle.

I sat down and Derek sat with me, tossing an arm around my shoulders and drawing me into his side. I shut my eyes for a moment, envisioning what it would be like when I finally saw my parents again for the first time since Christmas break.

Back then, I had been just the same as I always had been around my peers, awkward and shy. I had been my own wild self around my parents. But after finding friendship in two fellow outcasts (Bobbi and Derek), I lightened up and was probably now even more wild around my parents. I was a bit more problematic for the teachers, but not bad enough for them to have to report me to my parents.

I wondered what they would think of how long my hair had grown to be, or how much different my new brand of makeup made my eyes look, or would they mind much (if they noticed at all) that I had pierced the cartilage in my left ear?

Before long, I had fallen asleep.

But when I woke up, we had picked up a hitchhiker. And, not that I would ever openly admit this with Derek so close, an attractive hitchhiker.

Is it our hothothothothot hitchhiker from earlier? ,':O We'll just have to see. Thanks for reading! Review! :)