A/N: I wrote this fic because I am the world's biggest sucker for Shepard fics, and the appearance of Angela in 'That was Then, This is Now' got me thinking. So, here goes.

Warnings: language

I do not own any characters or plot ideas from S.E. Hinton's work.

Update 2015: This was written many years ago, and I can't quite vouch for its quality any longer. Please keep that in mind.

Chapter One

That kid.

Ponyboy Curtis. He sure has a funny name, but his face makes up for it. And his hair.

Angela Shepard watches him as he leaves. Tries to be discreet about it, not that it works. She's halfway hiding behind the stairs, wishing he'd stay a bit longer.

"Yeah, see you, Curly."

With that, the door is shut behind Ponyboy, and Curly is giving her the stupidest grin. "What's up with you, Angel? Lovesick?"

"Fuck you." Angela scowls.

Her brother looks at her with this expression that is so damn confusing – he's not smiling, but he's not angry, either. That's just standard Curly face: void of emotion. Because he's practiced to get it that way, and though he'll never be as good as Tim at it, he's better than most anyone else 'round that side of Tulsa.

After a few moments' pause, he says, "Watch it," in a level tone. Like he's never cursed at Tim before.

"You watch it," she tells him, and leaves.

She goes up those stairs she's been hiding behind, finding her room and shutting herself in it. Good thing the lock actually works on her door. You'd think the place would be nice, with two stories and all, but it's a shithouse like all the others in the neighborhood. Run down, falling apart.

Her mind keeps finding its way back to the Curtis kid. Thinking about those big, gray-greeny eyes. Normally a broad like her doesn't go for a kid like him, but she's willing to bend the rules. Doesn't matter if he's not your usual sexy. He's sexy enough, and she's gonna have him.

Angela is used to getting what she wants. Curly and Tim like to complain about her, but they're full of bull. They indulge her whims far too much to hate her. If they hated her, they would have left her that time her last boyfriend slapped her around.

"Huh," she says to herself, and then whispers his name. Ponyboy. Pony. Now it's not so odd as nice.

Give it a week. You'll be mine by then.


Tim is eyeing her in the most irritating way.

Head cocked, eyes narrowed, brow all pushed together ... He's evaluating her, and she hates it. She almost wants to tell him to spit it out, but you really don't say those kinds of things to Tim. After a while, he speaks, slowly. That's his way. "Curly tells me you're after the Curtis kid."

"To hell with Curly," she tells him, getting all cold inside.

"You know–" Tim leans with one elbow on the counter, as if readying himself to give her a long, serious lecture. Angel's instincts tell her to run, but her mind tells her to stay, because no one runs away from her big brother without making him angry. "–since Dallas died, we haven't been on the best terms with their group."

Dallas, Dallas, Dallas. It was months after he died when Tim finally went back to his normal self. Of course, no one knew he was mourning the other hood except her and Curly. No one else could pick up on the subtle changes in his personality. She could. This is the first time he'd straight out mentioned Dallas since that time about a year and a half ago, and she has no idea how to respond.

She sighs. "Yeah, I know." She bites her lip, then decides to continue. "But do I care?"

"Don't be a wise-ass, Angel." But Tim is still patient-looking as always. Well, as patient-looking as Tim can look.

"Sure, Tim."

He pushes his hair off his forehead and then says, all confidential-like, "Let me tell you something, kid. I'm pretty sure that Curtis don't like broads like you." He's thinking of that Soc girl, she knows.

But she makes her eyes go wide, and she says, "Why, he ain't never met a broad like me." She makes herself sound innocent, which is about as a far from herself as you can get.

"I'll bet he hasn't," Tim mutters, and leaves.

"Son of a..." she whispers at his back, and then stops herself from finishing.

Tomorrow, she begins with Plan A.


"Is Curtis coming over?"

Angela knows she's being obvious. But Curly has picked up on her thing for Ponyboy already, and so she doesn't bother to hide it. That's just more work, and she's never been an overachiever. She gets what she wants, no more, no less.

"Mmh," Curly says from the couch. He's sprawled out on it obscenely, with one leg on the back and the other dripping off, a Playboy practically flat on his face.

Odd. It was the answer she was hoping for, but she didn't really expect to get it. Curtis and Curly were never that close. Tim had seen to that; he practically beat their heads in every time they were together – mostly because her own brother always thought of some stupid way to get them killed. She wonders what's up.

"What are you two plotting, huh?"

Curly sits up and the magazine falls off his face. He peers at her suspiciously. "Who said we're plotting anything?"

"You," she says, shrugs.

He's not impressed by that. "I never–"

"Yeah, you just did. What's that stupid look for, then?"

"Go to hell, Angel."

She shakes her head and gets up. She goes back to her room and waits. If Curtis is coming over, it will be soon. He never comes later than noon. They never go upstairs, not unless they're doing something they don't want Tim to know. She'll strategically come down, and...

She really has no idea what she's going to do, but it's worth a shot.

Angela wants Ponyboy Curtis and she gets what she wants.