"So, what are you doing here?" Dylan asked innocently.
David opened his mouth and closed it again. If Amanda was his teacher, did Dylan really need to know? He'd find out eventually, but still… "Miss Williams' room?"
Dylan's eyes brightened. "Ah. Pretty woman. Nice, too. Yeah, I've got her for history. She's a good teacher. But you don't want her mad at you."
David laughed. "Believe me: I know."
"She has a kid, you kn- Oh."
David looked at him sideways, when he noticed Dylan smirking. "What?"
Dylan bit his lip. "I'm wondering how someone smart enough to put herself through college was dumb enough to go on any number of dates with you."
Dylan laughed and dodged the light blow David aimed towards him as they stopped in front of the closed door of Amanda's classroom. David caught him the second time he lunged and they began to wrestle around in the empty hallway.
"Hey!" They froze in place when Amanda walked out of her classroom to find Dylan held in David's headlock. "Stop it! You… boys…" She trailed off when she noticed David was one of the culprits.
David and Dylan both straightened up quickly, standing guiltily side by side. "I…" David tried to explain.
"I don't even want to know." Amanda told him. "I'm talking to a student right now, you probably know Jade Hayes, don't you?"
David nodded. "My partner's daughter?"
Amanda shut the door behind her as she stepped into the hallway. "That's the one."
"Is she okay?" Dylan asked.
"She will be. She's beating herself up because of something she almost did recently."
"Almost did?" David asked in confusion.
"There was a boy, who shall remain nameless, who talked her into lying to her parents and going to spend the night with him at a friend's house. She didn't do it, but it's still bothering her. I saw her talking to this boy, and, apparently, she saw me watching them, so she came to talk to me about it."
"Huh." David considered this carefully, slowly mulling it over, before he asked, "Can I talk to her?"
Amanda nodded; her eyes serious. "Sure."
David stepped into the classroom behind Amanda, with Dylan right behind him.
"Hey, Jade." David said softly into the quiet room.
Jade's head snapped up in surprise at seeing him there. "Hey." She replied just as softly. She didn't ask him why he was there.
David sat down on top of Amanda's desk while Dylan lingered in by the closed door. "I hear you've been having some trouble with your conscience."
Jade nodded, looking at her hands and twisting her new purity ring on her finger.
David released a harsh laugh at himself. "Let me tell you: I know what that's like. But here's the thing: in the end, you did what was right." He glanced at Dylan before he said, "You turned away and got back on the right path before it went too far. Before there was no return. That's not something to be ashamed of." He leaned towards Jade and quoted her father. "Do you understand what I'm telling you?"
Recognition flitted through her eyes when she met his gaze and nodded.
"Then what's the problem?"
A smile slowly made its way across her face as she came to the conclusion, "There isn't one."
David leaned back on the desk. "Right."
Amanda slipped up beside David and slid an arm around his shoulders, squeezing them in thanks.
"And, hey," Dylan and Jade both looked back up at David when he spoke. "I just want you to know that I'm proud of you. You too, Dylan. Taking a stand is hard, but you'll be glad you did. Better to walk out on that stuff – drugs, sex," He paused before focusing on Dylan and adding hesitantly, "Drinking – now rather than trying later, when it's harder. Believe me," He glanced at Amanda, standing tall beside him. "Believe us, we know."
Please review! This story is complete and is what became of another one of Challenge King's challenges for me. :)