Time Goes On: Chapter 1

Title: Time Goes On
Chapter: Chapter 1 of 10
Author: Chelle
Rating: NC-17
Warning: This fictional story contains mature content such as; alcohol-usage, profanity, sex and violence, consider youself warned.
Excerpt: I’d convinced myself that moving had been the right thing to do. My life had taken too many wrong turns and now I’d gotten the chance to start over. I walked out of the kitchen and back into the livingroom. Hmm, not really spacious but nice, I thought as I made my way back into the kitchen and looked out of the window. It was a nice place to live, quiet but with a few children. I didn’t think about the fact that I was 18 and completely on my own, miles away from my home and family, which I’d managed to avoid for the last 4 months. I was never close to them and I’d never actually gotten along with them to begin with. They just sort of ignored me as I did them. It was clear that the minute I turned 18, I was out of there. And I had been, literally. The day after my birthday, I’d left. First living in Florida with a friend and now had made it to Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Chapter 01

The air was so humid. The wind barely blew as I listened to kids playing in the street. It was quiet except for their laughter. “Stupid thing!” I said out loud to no one as I tried to move a heavy box across the floor. I had just moved into the secluded neighborhood and was trying to get things unpacked. I stood in the livingroom filled with boxes looking around. The door was open as were the windows and I had fans going due to the fact that I’d not bought an air conditioner yet. “I don’t know how it can be this hot so early.” I said to myself, grabbing a bottle of water out of the fridge. It was barely 10am and already 88 degrees. I stood in the kitchen for a moment, listening to a kid outside calling for a recount about something while nearly bending double with laughter.
I’d convinced myself that moving had been the right thing to do. My life had taken too many wrong turns and now I’d gotten the chance to start over. I walked out of the kitchen and back into the livingroom. Hmm, not really spacious but nice, I thought as I made my way back into the kitchen and looked out of the window. It was a nice place to live, quiet but with a few children. I didn’t think about the fact that I was 18 and completely on my own, miles away from my home and family, which I’d managed to avoid for the last 4 months. I was never close to them and I’d never actually gotten along with them to begin with. They just sort of ignored me as I did them. It was clear that the minute I turned 18, I was out of there. And I had been, literally. The day after my birthday, I’d left. First living in Florida with a friend and now had made it to Tulsa, Oklahoma.
“Hello!” someone called from the front door. I walked in wiping my hands on my red shorts. “Hi.” I said. I saw a woman standing there with a little girl at her feet. “Come on in.” I said as I gestured to her. She walked in smiling. “I just noticed your door open and wanted to come and say hi and welcome to the neighborhood!” I said, “Thanks.” and smiled. We chatted for a few minutes and then she said “Oh good Lord, where are my manners? I’m Diana and this little one here is my daughter Zoe. She’s my youngest.” I smiled an noticed that the little girl hadn’t let go of her mother’s hand. They both had blue eyes and long blonde hair, which blew to the side with the wind coming through the door. I replied “It’s nice to meet you both. I’m Melissa.” as we shook hands. “Nice to finally meet you.” Diana smiled, then continued, “We saw you here a few days ago. I was going to ask if you needed some help but you left in a hurry.” I grinned as I stuck my hands in my pockets. “Yeah, I just came to pick up the keys and drop off some cleaning products.” I answered. “Oh, well listen if you need some help getting things moved around,” she gestured around the room and smiled, “I’ve got a husband, four strapping boys and two other daughters. We’d be glad to help.” I smiled at her, already deciding to take her up on that offer but wanting to wait ’til the next day so I didn’t appear too eager. “OK thanks. I’ll give ya a yell if I need some muscle.” She grinned “Alright hun. We’re in the brick house over there with the porch swing,” she said as she pointed across the street and two houses down, “Just come over anytime and let us know.” She and I smiled and then she said, “Well, I’ve gotta get this one to a birthday party, so you have a nice day and we look forward to getting to know you.” I shook her hand again and said “You too. Bye Zoe.” The little girl just waved and as Diana (as she insisted on being called) smiled, she walked out and back to her house.
I began unpacking again. As I walked out to my car to get the last suitcase out of the trunk, I tugged at my white shirt. I was sweating and had become aware that my clothes were sticking to me. Stopping at my car, I tightened my ponytail, then lugged the suitcase out and slammed the trunk closed. Barefoot, I walked up on my porch and sit the suitcase inside the door. I turned stretching my back and then my arms and as I looked around I noticed a young guy in the front yard of Diana’s house waving at me, smiling. I smiled quickly and waved back. Then I watched as he gathered a small child in his arms and began spinning in a circle. I smiled as I heard the child scream with laughter.
Then, walking back inside, I closed the door and headed into the bathroom. I took a shower and changed into a pair of black, denim shorts, a blue t-shirt and black strap sandals. After pulling my hair into a clip, spraying on some perfume and spreading on some lip gloss, I quickly walked out and to my car. I noticed that at Diana’s house, the small child now sat on the porch steps eating what appeared to be ice cream, while the same guy walked across the yard. There was a young girl in the driveway washing a car. I saw right away that she had the same blonde hair that Diana and Zoe had. I drove past them as I put in a CD and he waved again as he now stood at the mailbox. I noticed that he’d taken his shirt off. “Must be one of those sons she was talking about” I thought as I waved and drove on. I decided right then and there that I really needed to get those heavy boxes moved into the den that day… and I’d need some muscle. I smiled to myself.

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I walked through the small store. I just got the basics-bread, milk, eggs, a few microwave dinners, cokes, 3 packets of koolaide, chips, vegetarian turkey, a box of brownie mix and some apples. I paid for my groceries and started home. I had noticed the clock before leaving the store read 4:25.
As I pulled down my street, I saw Diana and Zoe walking toward their house from her car. I blew my horn and pulled into the end of their driveway. Diana smiled and walked over. “Hi, Melissa right?” she asked pointing toward me. I nodded and smiled. “Hey, I was wondering if I could borrow one of those boys of yours. I need some stuff moved into the den.” She smiled and said “Sure, I’ll go in here and see who’s available and send ’em over ok?” I smiled again and replied “Ok. Tell them I won’t keep ’em long.” She waved and I backed out and drove to my house. I unloaded the car and walked inside. I put the groceries away and started sipping some water while I hoped Diana would send the son I’d noticed earlier. She’d, no doubt, sent the one with the most muscle and he had not been lacking it. Then a knock on the door made me jump out of my thoughts. I opened it and there he stood, wearing a black tank top and blue jeans. His hair was short and his eyes were a deep honey color. His skin was somewhat tan and he had a smile that spread from one end of his face to the other. “Hi,” he said with a slight smile, “My mom, Diana, told me you needed some help moving some stuff. So here I am to your rescue.” I couldn’t help but laugh at his remark. I put my hand out and as he took it I said “Hi, thanks for coming over. I’m Melissa. And you are?” He stepped inside and answered, “Hi, you’re welcome. I’m Zac.”
“Oh my God! Of course! I don’t know why I didn’t notice before. Hanson. I knew the name Hanson. The band Hanson. Zac Hanson. I knew I’d heard your mom’s name before!” I smiled, he blushed. “Yep, that’s it. But around here it’s not a big deal ok? So here, I’m just Zac. Deal,” he raised his eyebrow and I suddenly caught on. “Deal” I said with a nod, then continued, “Ok, you want something to drink?” I asked. “Nope, just here to help,” he replied. “Ok then, this stuff goes into the den right in there.” I said as I pointed to some boxes. He rubbed his hands together and began moving box after box as I finished unpacking the last box for the livingroom. Afterwards, he moved the couch to the other side and hung some curtains. I was barely 5’4″ and he, at 6’0″, towered over me.
He worked until we were finished with the living room. It was close to 6. “Now, you have to let me get you a drink.” I said, sighing. I’d noticed the sweat beginning to streak down from his temples onto his neck. “Ok,” he sighed, “water would be nice.” I smiled and turned to go into the kitchen. Grabbing two bottles of water, I walked back into the living room. He had seated himself in front of one of the fans and had adjusted it to blow on his face. I handed him the water and he gave that big grin. I sat next to him and we made small talk for a while about the weather, the neighbors, his family and he and his brothers playing in the band.
After a minute of silence, I asked, “Zac, why’d you guys quit?” He looked at me and took another drink of his water. “We didn’t really quit. We just… I don’t know, needed a break. We got into it so young and things got out of control. When we decided to start the record label, it took away from the focus of just being a band. We came home for a short break and time just passed. But we are writing again so hopefully we’ll have another album soon. We all miss it, we just needed some time at home, without rushing from one city to the next.”
I nodded. I understood and was happy that they’d taken time off. “Maybe sometime you can come over and hear some of the new music.” I could feel my face light up at his invitation. “Sure, that’d be great.” His face lit up at my answer. Then a knock on the half open door caused us both to jump slightly and turn. “Hey, Zac! You guys in there?”
We smiled at each other then Zac answered “Yeah, Taylor, c’mon in.” He stepped through the door and Zac and I stood up. “Hi,” he said, walking toward me and extending his hand. “I’m Taylor,” he said as I shook his hand. “Well, I’m…” Taylor interrupted me saying, “Melissa. Mom told me.” We smiled as I nodded. “Zac, mom wants you home for dinner.” He sighed and said “Ok, I’m on my way.” With that Taylor smiled again saying “Ok. Nice to meet you Melissa. See ya around.” I said “Yeah, ok.” He walked out and back across the street. “Guess I better go,” Zac said. I nodded, “Thanks Zac. It was nice of you to help me and very nice to talk to you.” He blushed “You’re welcome. It was nice talking to you too. If you want, I can come over tomorrow afternoon and help you some more.” I glanced at him and answered, “Ok, come by around 10:00.” He smiled and said “See you then.” With a wave, I watched him walk back to his house and inside.
I fixed a microwave dinner and settled down to watch some TV. Thanks to Zac, I now had cable and a VCR. After cleaning up a bit, I’d fallen asleep on the couch, sore and exhausted from the day’s work.

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I was woken up by a gentle shake on my arm and some calling my name. I opened my eyes and tried to focus on the figure standing over me. “Humm, what time is it?” I asked rubbing my eyes. “Five after ten.” He answered as he finally became clear to my vision. “Oh, god, hi Zac. I didn’t mean to oversleep.” I said as I sat up. “It’s ok. But you know, you really should lock your door.”
“Oh good grief… a dad lecture.” He continued pulling me to my feet. “I’m sorry to just have walked in. I knocked a few times and thought you may have gotten hurt.” He said. “No it’s ok. I’m glad you woke me up.” I suddenly felt his hand on my back as I stretched. He rubbed up to my shoulders and down to my waist a couple of times with such ease and strength. “I knnowwww.” He said giggling as I moaned, both from pleasure and pain. I laughed. “Ok, ok. Enough of that. We’re gonna work in the kitchen today.” I said matter of factly as I led him in there. “Now, if you could just start putting these on,” I said gesturing toward some new cabinet doors, “I’m gonna take a quick shower.” He smiled and said “Take a long shower, I got this.” I smiled as I started toward the doorway. “Oh,” I turned back as he glanced up, “If you get thirsty, there’s some stuff in the fridge.” He smiled and nodded and I started toward the bathroom. I lingered in the hot shower, taking full advantage of the effect it had on my tired sore muscles. When I reluctantly got out and dressed, I brushed my hair, sprayed on some perfume and walked into the livingroom to find Zac sitting on the couch, sipping some water, and looking through my collection of CDs piled near the stereo.
He glanced up and smiled as I walked in.”Hey, feel better?” He asked. “Uh-huh.” I smiled. “Well, I’m done in here,” he said as we walked into the kitchen. I got a can of coke and took a sip. I noticed that he had done a good job and had even cleaned up the mess when he was done putting the trash in the bag already half filled on the kitchen floor and neatly laying the hammer on the counter, next to it, the extra screws in one bag instead of the four he’d had to open. “Very nice, looks great.” I said with a smile, causing him to look down for a few seconds until the redness on his cheeks had faded. “Thanks,” he replied as he glanced up at me.
We then started more work, moving furniture, hanging curtains and paintings and putting in the ceiling fan. By this time he was starting to sweat and had started splashing cold water on his face and neck in the bathroom. Afterwards, he glanced at his watch. “Ok, let’s go.” I looked up from filling a vase with water for the flowers another neighbor had brought over as a welcome gift about an hour earlier. “What? Go where?” I asked putting the flowers in the water and putting them on the kitchen table. “Mom invited you over for lunch so you can meet the family. She told me to bring you over at 2:30 and it’s 2:40. So, let’s go.” I was surprised but welcomed the chance to meet the family. And I was getting hungry. “Ok,”I said “Umm, I need to go to Home Depot though so I can’t stay too long ok?” He nodded and opened the door.
We walked to the Hansons and were greeted at the door by Zoe. She ran into Zac’s arms and said hello to me. Then yelled “Mmooommmmm! They’re heeerreeee!” Zac winced and I laughed. “Hi, come on in here, have a seat. Zac introduce her.” Diana said with a smile as she headed back into the kitchen, spoon in one hand and the phone now back at her ear held with the other.
The home was a flurry of activity and noise as Zac and I went into the living room. “Everybody!” Zac said rather loud to get their attention. “This is Melissa, our new neighbor.” I was suddenly met with a massive amount of hand shakes and hellos. Once things were quiet Zac said “In case you missed any of that,” we all laughed as he rolled his eyes, “This is our dad Walker, Taylor, whom I believe you met, our oldest brother Isaac, our sisters Jessica and Avery, and our brother Mackenzie. And Zoe, you met her too.” Zac pointed to each person as he introduced them and they smiled.
As we sat on the couch, they began asking me questions. I answered each one and found myself very relaxed. They were all friendly but not nosey. Diana then walked in saying “Good grief, you all lay off! Hi Hon, glad you joined us. Lunch is ready.” The kids ran into the kitchen, with the adults following behind. After we were all seated Diana said “Isaac, why don’t you go see if Karen wants to eat with us?” Isaac excused himself and headed upstairs.
Zac leaned toward me from his seat next to mine “Karen’s Isaac’s wife. She’s pregnant and hasn’t been feeling too good.” I nodded.
Just then a young girl came in the door. “Hey,” she said grinning as she walked into the kitchen. Taylor’s face lit up and he jumped from his seat and embraced her in a hug. “I thought you weren’t coming home ’til tonight.” He said letting go of her and ushering her to the table. “Got done quicker than I thought I would.” She sat at the table and Taylor introduced us. “Honey, this is Melissa, our new neighbor. Melissa, this is my wife, Victoria.” I shook her hand across the table and she smiled saying “Tori. Nice to meet ya.” Then Isaac came in and said “Hey Tori! Mom, Karen was asleep and she said she’s not hungry right now.” Diana nodded and after grace was said, we began eating and talking about one thing then another. When we’d finished and had cleared the dishes, Zac said “C’mon Melissa. I’ll take ya to Home Depot.” I decided to take him up on that offer and after our good-byes, we left.
“You got a led foot too huh?” I asked with a grin as we pulled into the parking lot. He grinned and turned the car off. We walked in and he followed quietly as I picked up some paint supplies and put them in the cart he was pushing. After paying for the purchases we got back into his single cab, white pickup and headed home. He pulled into my driveway and helped me carry in the bags. We sat down on the couch as I told him of my plans to paint. He offered to help the next day. I agreed and after a few more minutes of talking he left.
I sat watching TV. I wondered why I’d found myself so comfortable and open with him so soon. Trust was a big issue with me and I’d never opened up to anyone so quickly like I was to him. I’d never felt so relaxed with anyone like I felt with him. Sure he was Zac Hanson from a band that I’d loved, but he was more than that. He was nice and polite and funny. He was also smart and had been very kind to help me. He was just Zac from Tulsa here and I’d never break our deal to turn it into anything more. Still though, I found myself wondering about him. I wanted to know him, everything about him. I wanted him to know everything about me. I wanted him to want to know about me.

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The next morning, Zac came over around 9:30. I was awake and looking over the paint cans we’d bought the day before. “Hey,” he said walking through the door. “Hi,” I replied. “So, what room first?” he asked walking toward me. “Uhhh,” I had planned to paint the bathroom and guest bedroom. “I guess we’ll start in the guest room,” I said. He picked up the paint can and brushes while I carried the pan and a roller.
We walked in the room and after putting down the paint bucket, he opened the window and turned on the fan. “Zac?” I asked as he locked the window in place, “Would you go into the kitchen and get the tape off of the counter? The blue tape and grab a couple of bottles of water while you’re in there.” He nodded and turned to go toward the kitchen.
I sat on the floor and taking a screwdriver began to pry the lid off of the paint can. “God… good grief!” I said to myself trying to get the lid off. “Need help? Here let me.” Zac said as he walked into the room and turned to sit the water and tape down on a table. I said, “I think I got it… if I could just… get the… last edge… off, Zac!” I shouted his name. Without a warning, the screwdriver slipped away from the paint can and had stabbed me in the hand between my thumb and index finger, on my palm. The blood gushed out and Zac pulled me up quickly taking me to the bathroom and  holding my hand under water. “Just hold still a sec.” he said as he reached over and grabbed a towel. He took my hand in it holding pressure on the wound. After a minute or two, he slowly pulled the towel away and quickly replaced the used side as blood began rushing out of my hand. “Dammit, that hurts!” I said almost in tears. He again
pulled the towel away and seeing the blood had not slowed down, said “Ok, we gotta get you to a doctor, it’s pretty bad and I’m guessing you’ll need stitches.” I sighed and sucked in through my teeth as another sharp pain went through my hand and up my arm. “I’ll be ok. It’ll stop in a second. I just need to sit down for a minute.” I was getting dizzy and began to walk toward the living room. Zac took my arm as I walked and then a terrible feeling of sickness came over me and the last thing I heard was Zac calling my name.
I didn’t really recall what had happened when I finally came to. I woke up in a bed with an IV in my hand and a bandage on the other. I heard someone say my name and turned my head slowly to see Zac looking down at me. He smiled and little and said “Hey there.” I smiled slightly and said “Hi. What happened?” He started rubbing my forehead and answered “You passed out. You’re in the hospital but the doctor said it wasn’t bad. You needed a few stitches and they had to put you to sleep because you started waking up when they were putting them in. You’re gonna be ok though.” I slowly began to recall the events that had taken place and asked “How did I get here?” He answered “I drove you… in your car. And you know something,” he paused and
smiled “You have got to get an automatic!” We both laughed and when the doctor had given me the all clear, Zac drove me home. “I guess the painting will have to wait huh?” I asked as we pulled into my driveway. He helped me out of the car and inside. He led me to the guestroom and said “Sit and enjoy.” I turned and sit down in the chair and watched confused as he poured the paint into the pan, grabbed the roller, and turned on the fan and then the stereo. He began to paint and dance. I laughed so hard watching him do his best entertainment dance around the room… which turned into a stripper dance as he began to sweat and removed his shirt in a seductive manner. Neither of us could keep a straight face.
When he was finally done, he helped me into the living room, handed me the TV remote and some coke and said “I’ll let you get some rest, but I’ll come check on you later. I called mom from the hospital and told her I’d fill her in after we got back.” I nodded and as he walked out of the door, I said “Zac?” He looked at me over his shoulder, “Thanks. For everything.” I smiled as did he replying “No problem. See ya after a while.” I nodded again and he left. I sighed deeply and turned on the TV. My hand was still numb and I appreciated not feeling the pain run through my arm anymore. I got lost in a TV program and then took a short nap. When I woke up my hand was throbbing and I took one of the pills the doctor had given me for the pain. I walked in to the kitchen and got a few Oreo cookies and a glass of milk and settled back on the couch. I ignored the easing pain as I watched on.

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Around 7:30, I was watching a movie, bored, and heard a knock on the door. I got up and walked over to open it. “Hey.” I said. “Hi, how ya feeling?” He asked as I backed up and he stepped inside closing the door. “Ok, I guess. It doesn’t hurt and I took a nap.” He nodded and asked “Are you hungry?” I smiled and answered “I was just thinking of what I was going to have for dinner.” He grinned “How about a pizza?” He asked. “Sure,” I said sitting back on the couch, “Sounds good to me,” he nodded once and picked up the phone, dialing the number he asked “What kind?” I answered “Just cheese… and get some bread sticks too.” He nodded and said “Ok.” I leaned back on the couch and flipped through the TV channels as he said “Two large pizzas, one pepperoni, one plain cheese. And a order of bread sticks… Yes… uh-huh… 2433 West 77th Street… Ok, thanks.” He hung the phone up and said “It’ll be here in a bit.” I smiled. “You don’t like pepperoni?” he asked. “I’m a vegetarian,” I answered. He looked surprised. “Since when?” he asked with a grin. “Since my birthday 2 years ago.” I grinned back. He waited for an explanation so I said “My friend, Lacey, took me out on my birthday and every time I bit into the pizza we were eating for lunch she would squeal like a piglet.” He laughed as did I. Then I continued, “I just couldn’t eat meat after that. I kept seeing calves and piglets and baby chicks when I did so I finally just stopped.” We laughed again and he asked “Does it bother you to see people eating meat?” I shook my head and said “Not really. People can eat what they want.” He then stretched out his arms in front of him and leaned back on the couch. I gasped when I came across one of my favorite movies. “Oh my God! Look! ‘Rush Hour’ is on!” He raised his head “This is one of my favorites!” he said. I turned toward him, “No kidding? I love this movie!” He grinned and we leaned back and began laughing at Chris Tucker’s lines and facial expressions. A knock on the door caused Zac to jump up and walk over. “Who is it?” he asked as I turned the TV down. “Pizza delivery.” We heard a guy answer. Zac looked at me and grinned raising his eyebrows. He opened the door and took the two boxes and bag of bread. He set them on the table by the door and reached into his pocket. Handing the guy the money and a tip he said “Thanks,” and closed the door. He picked up our dinner and sit it down on the coffee table in front of the couch. We walked into the kitchen and go some drinks, napkins and paper plates. Then went back to the living room and started eating while we finished the movie. That was followed by some ice cream and ‘Rush Hour 2’.
When the movie was over, we just sat talking with the TV turned down. We talked about everything from music to our childhood and eventually we moved to completely random questions. We were laughing uncontrollably at each other’s most embarrassing moments and worst dates ever. After confessing our biggest and most secretive fears, I glanced up at the huge window that looked out over the back yard. “Holy shit Zac!” I said almost laughing. He glanced at me “What?” he asked confused. “It’s morning. Look, the sun’s coming up.” I pulled the drapes back and he looked out. “Damn hell. Mom’s gonna kill me! I gotta go.” He jumped up and pulled his shoes on and hurried to the door. “Bye.” I called to him laughing. “He giggled and said “Bye, see ya later.” Then he was gone. I wasn’t tired at all having slept a lot the day before so I went to shower. Standing under the hot water, I realized that I was falling for this guy. I really enjoyed spending time with him. His smile and laugh were contagious and I loved that we could have a goofy conversation filled with jokes and giggles but just as easily have a serious conversation about things very important to us and world events. I found myself feeling free to be myself with Zac. He listened to my thoughts and opinions and made me feel comfortable expressing my feelings. One thing he didn’t know about though was how I felt about him. I never seemed to know what to say. He seemed to like my company as well, but had never said anything about feeling more. I began to wonder if either of us ever would. I wanted to know how he felt, what he felt but was so terrified of what his answer may be that I always put the thought out of my head. “You are a coward.” I told myself, standing in front of my bathroom mirror wrapped in a towel. “What the hell are you doing? He can have any girl in the world and you are stupid enough to think he might like you.” I walked into my room and got dressed. Then pulled my hair into a braided bun and went outside.
I sat there for a while with my legs hanging off of my porch. I was so lost in thought, I didn’t even notice him walk up to me. “Melissa, how are you?” I turned and saw Isaac standing there looking down at me smiling. “Hi, I’m good thanks. Here have a seat.” I patted my concrete porch and he sit beside me. “Zac told us what happened.” I nodded as he continued “We were worried about you. You sure you’re ok?” I smiled and said “Yeah, I’m fine. I only took one of the pain pills. It hasn’t bothered me any. It’s just hard getting used to this thing on my hand.” I held up my hand and he nodded looking at the bandage. “So, how’s Karen, is it?” I asked, trying to remember his wife’s name. “Yeah, Karen. She’s doing good. Ready to have the baby. The pregnancy’s been hard on her.” he said looking out into the street. “When is she due?” I asked. “Three months, 14 days.” He said grinning. “It’ll be our first so we’re really excited.” I couldn’t help but smile at how his face lit up. “So, how do you like it here?” he asked. “It’s nice,” I answered “Really nice. The neighbors have been very welcoming. I’ve gotten flowers, gift baskets, wine and even a welcome card from the little girl who lives next door to you.” He smiled “Ashley, yeah, she’s sweet. Loves to come over and play with the dogs.” We laughed.
The Hansons had three dogs, two labs and a mix breed. They were very friendly and loved nothing more than chasing a water hose across the yard. “Is Zac driving you crazy yet?” Isaac asked. “No, he’s been great company and a big help.” I answered. “Ok,well I guess I better get back. Just yell if you need anything.” I smiled and watched him walk down my driveway. He turned and walked back toward me stopping a couple of feet away. “Melissa, you know Zac really likes you right?” I was taken back but tried to seem less surprised than I was. “Really? What makes you think that?” I asked. “He talks about you a lot. He can barely breathe at the sight of blood and he managed to help you when you got hurt. He’s over here all the time and looks like he’s in dreamland when he gets back home.” I laughed, slightly blushing. Isaac continued “He likes you, I can tell. And I just wanted you to know that he’s not gonna say anything until you tell him you like him.” I glared at him now. “How do you know I like him?” I asked, squinting my eyes in the sunlight. “Well,” Isaac began as he walked towards me, “You lit up at the mention of his name, and your face turned four different shades of red when I told you he likes you. And that grin is unmistakable.” We laughed. “Just tell him, ok?” I watched as he turned back and started toward his house.
I got up and went inside. A few minutes later, Taylor knocked and I went to the door. “Hey, I was gonna ask how you are but Ike already told me.” he said. I smiled at him. “Look, I just wanna say that it’s no secret to any of us that you and Zac like each other. But you’re gonna have to say something first. He’s just not going to take the chance. He didn’t send either of us over here. I wanted to talk to you about it myself and so did Ike. Melissa, he needs somebody. And I really think, we all think, the two of you would be great together.” I sighed after listening to his words. I looked down and said “I do like him Taylor but I don’t want to be hurt again like I have been before.” He replied “I understand that but Zac’s been hurt too and he won’t do it to anyone else. He knows what it feels like to be hurt. Just talk to him, ok?” I nodded and then Taylor said “You know where we are if you need us. See ya around.” I smiled and nodded again as he turned to leave. As I was about to close the door Taylor said “Melissa,” I turned back “He needs somebody. You are and would be better for him than anyone, especially Courtney.” Before I could say another word, Taylor was in his car and driving past his house. I walked inside and sit on the couch. It wasn’t long before Isaac and Taylor’s words got to me as did my curiosity. “Well,” I sighed “You gotta do what you gotta do.” I stood up and straightening my clothes walked out the door and across the street to the Hansons. I knew that I had to talk to Zac and the next day, or the next week, or even the next month, wouldn’t have been any easier time to do it.

*Prologue / Chapter 2*
*Go Back to Chapters Index*

This fictional story is hosted at The Gifted Ones,
with permission from the author Chelle.

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