Never Say Forever

“This was a bad idea…” Brie said, taking note of Tyler’s reaction. “I should go.” She walked passed him. Tyler sighed, unsure of what to say next. He let her walk halfway down the walkway before he finally ran after her. 

“Brianne, wait…” He said, grabbing her arm to turn her towards him. “I’m sorry about the way I reacted…you have to understand…it’s shocking to see you!” Tyler looked her up and down. “And you just look so…different.” Brie laughed.
"Well, Ty…it has been 5 years since you last seen me.” She said.
“Exactly…” Tyler responded. “And…it’s more of a shock because I’m standing here in my heart-covered underwear while you’re standing there looking better than ever!” Tyler laughed, pretending to cover his body in embarrassment. Brie giggled.
“You always were a charmer…” She suggested.
“Don’t mind my asking, but…why are you here?” Tyler asked, cautiously.  

Tyler…I need your help.” She said after a long sigh. “I’m in…big trouble.”
“So naturally, you come here?” Tyler was confused. “I don’t get it…you always have had tons of friends…you haven’t spoken to me in years. Not to mention, you must have gone through hell and high water just to figure out where I live. I’m not listed in the phone books!”
“This was the only place he wouldn’t think to look for me.” She paused for a moment. “And I asked around for your address.” Tyler grew even more confused. 

“I don’t understand…” He said. “What’s....going…” Sam looked over at the expensive, yellow Ferrari parked so perfectly in his driveway. If he wasn’t around Brianne, he would’ve started drooling. “Oh…my…god…” He interrupted himself. “Is that yours?” He ran over to it.  

“Ty!” Brie called as he ran towards her car. “This is serious! I need to talk to you!” Tyler didn’t respond. 

“This model isn’t even out yet!” Tyler said, excitably. “How did you…why…how…”
“It’s not mine…it’s my friend, Donnie’s. He lent it to me so I could get around.”
“He lent you his Ferrari? What an idiot! I wouldn’t even let my own girlfriend touch this if it were mine!” Tyler exclaimed.
“You always get so distracted!” Brie yelled, getting frustrated.  

“How can I not be distracted by the nicest car I have ever seen in my entire life?” Tyler hollered back. Brie took Tyler by his arms and shook him. Tyler instantly snapped out of it.
“Are you going to listen to me or not?” She yelled. Tyler nodded quickly, frightened by his old friend’s rage.
“I’m listening.” He said quietly.
“Last week, Hank came home one night all bent and bruised up. He was still in uniform so I figured something had happened while he was on duty.” Brie lowered her arms and softened her voice as she painfully remembered the next part of her story. “I tried to lick his wounds for him—gave him band aids, tried to put some ice on his bumps—but he was so angry at the guy who did it to him that he started blowing up on me. He pushed me away and started yelling at me and ended up confessing to everything. He told me about his affair with Sam’s roommate and how Sam beat him up and…and…” Tears began to fill her eyes. “…and…everything just went crazy from there. He wouldn’t let me leave, he would hit me and yell at me and call me names…it was a nightmare! He blamed me for ever even knowing Sam and punished me for having dated him.” 

Tyler was shocked and couldn’t think of what to say. Brie continued.
“Last night, Hank got really drunk and passed out early. I was finally able to use the phone and so I called my friend Donnie to come rescue me. He snuck me out of the upstairs window and brought me back to his place for the night. With his girlfriend coming back home today from her camping trip, he knew she wouldn’t like me staying there so he lent me his car until I could figure out what to do next.”
“Have you figured out what you’re going to do?” Tyler was finally able to ask.
“Well…yes. Hank has never met my parents—he hasn’t even cared enough to ask where they live! So I think getting to Boston is my safest bet. I’ll tell the authorities there what happened to me and let my parents and the cops take over from there.”
“Why don’t you just go to the authorities here? Boston…is a long ways away.” Tyler responded.
“I can’t talk to the cops here, you idiot! Hank is chief of police! And word is, he’s out there looking for me.”
“So you want to fly to Boston….” Tyler tried to understand.
“No, I can’t fly. Hank has access to everything and the second I run my credit card, he will know and he will find me. I have to get there by driving.”
“So drive. You have Donnie’s Ferrari.” Tyler joked.
“I can’t just take his Ferrari…and I don’t have my own vehicle either. The car I drove was Hank’s second vehicle. Besides, my parents are on an Atlantic cruise right now…I’m stuck until they get back for an entire month!”


“So what do you need me to do?” Tyler was confused.
“What do you mean?” Brie asked defensively.
“You said you needed my help…”
“Oh…right.” Brie searched for her words. “I need a place to stay…and help finding a way to Boston.”
“You can’t stay here for a month, Brianne! I’m sorry, but there is just no room here.”
“Is there enough room for a few days? Just until I can figure something else out.”
“I don’t know…” Tyler sighed. “It’s not a good idea. My main focus right now has to stay on my music and trying to get my best friend to forgive me.” Brie was suddenly interested.
“Sam?” She asked. Tyler nodded responsively. “Why? What’s going on?”
“We got into this huge fight…I won’t go into details. He won’t even answer his phone long enough for me to say sorry! He’s completely ignoring me and I have no idea how to get his attention…”  

Brianne smiled.
“What?” Tyler asked. She gave him a look—a look that can only mean one thing. It was a look that Sam considered as Brianne’s biggest flaw…the look of clockwork—Brianne had an idea. 

That same morning, Sam and Kaleah were enjoying breakfast together. The weather was beautiful…it was getting warmer out and Kaleah could feel the summer months rolling in. Summer was her most inspirational season for her art.
“I like painting landscapes.” She explained to Sam. “They’re calming and can be interpreted in so many different emotions.”
“There are only 4 emotions in my mind—happy, sad, mad, and content.” Sam teased.
“No way, Sam! What about excited, exasperated, calm…” Kaleah was trying to be serious.
“Happy, sad, mad, and content.” Sam repeated. “Plain and simple.” He got up to wash his plate as Kaleah playfully rolled her eyes. Once she was finished, she join Sam at the dishwasher. 

“So it’s almost June 21st.” Sam explained, counting the 5 days that separated the present to the day he was talking about.
“Yeah, so?” Kaleah responded, sticking her plate into the dishwasher.
“June 21st is the first day of summer.” Sam said. Kaleah closed the dishwasher and faced Sam, unsure as to what he was getting at.


“On the first day of summer, I was always host a barbeque here in my backyard. It’s sort of been a tradition since I’ve graduated. I would totally understand if you want me to cancel it this year if you’re not comfortable with it…” Sam explained. Kaleah shook her head defensively.
“No, no, no Sam! Of course you can throw your party! I wouldn’t mind!” She smiled.
“Okay, good.” Sam smiled back.
“It will be nice to meet some new people…maybe make a few new friends.” Kaleah giggled. “It sucks being the new kid in town.” She joked.
“Yeah, I bet.” Sam agreed. “So Friday at 5:00 work for you?”
“Sam…I have absolutely no commitments. Anytime works for me.” Kaleah teased. “It will be fun!” She exclaimed, getting excited.
“Yeah, it usually is. We blast some music while I cook hot dogs on the BBQ and…it’s basically a time for everyone to reconnect. I don’t know who would all show up this year though…” Sam spoke in reference to Tyler. Kaleah comfortingly put her hand on Sam’s shoulder.
“Invite him.” She said, knowing exactly what he was thinking. “Everyone deserves to be forgiven. You forgave me.” She winked.  

Sam smiled. “Maybe…I’ll have to think about it.” He joked. He looked up at the clock.
“You waiting for a date, mister?” Kaleah accused, noticing Sam’s sudden interest at the time. Sam laughed.
“No…I work a double shift today at the grocery store. My manager wants me in by 11.” Sam said. Kaleah felt a wave of disappoint run through her when she realized she wouldn’t be spending the day with Sam anymore. She couldn’t understand why she would feel this way.
“Oh…” She said, trying to hide her obvious emotion. “Well I have a lot of work to do with my art anyways.”
“Well I’ll see you when I get home then.” Sam smiled before heading towards the door. They exchanged goodbyes and Sam reluctantly pulled himself into his truck while Kaleah sadly headed upstairs to her balcony.  

The entire day went by and Sam was finally off his extra long shift. Instead of going directly home, he went for a short walk down the street to do some thinking. The park seemed to be his favourite spot for figuring out his thoughts and so he headed in that direction. 

He thought he was alone until, not even 5 minutes after he arrived, he heard footsteps walking down the stairs towards him. He could only guess who it was.
“Sam?” Tyler asked, hoping he would get a response. Sam closed his eyes hoping his old friend would go away. 

“Sam, listen…” Tyler said. “I need to talk to you about something.” Sam sighed and slowly turned towards his friend, expecting yet another annoying apology. Tyler opened his mouth to start talking but Sam instantly interrupted him before even a sound could leave Tyler’s lips. 

Tyler, I’ve deleted you from my friend’s list on my chat, I’ve blocked your number on my cell phone and I haven’t returned any of your calls! What more do you need to realize that I don’t want to talk to you?” Sam hollered.
“How many times do I have to say I’m sorry before you forgive me?” Tyler hollered back. “I’m trying here! You are so set on pointing all of the blame on me and it’s getting seriously tried, Sam! This is ridiculous! I have been there for you through your happiest moments and your darkest times and you can’t even give me the decency of allowing me to apologize for something that really wasn’t a big deal at all?” 

“Not a big deal?” Sam felt his face get hot. “NOT A BIG DEAL?” He repeated.
“Sam...Sam…calm down.” Tyler grew scared.
“It was a big deal to me, Ty! A huge one!” Sam yelled. “It’s not even so much about the fact that you slept with her! It’s about trust! I trusted you to take care of her and you couldn’t even do that for me!”
“She’s fine, isn’t she?” Tyler remarked.
“Sam! I didn’t even come here to try and apologize! I came here looking for you to tell you…” Tyler got interrupted.
“I don’t care what you have to say! I am so done with listening to what you have to say and now it’s over! Go!”
“But Sam…”
“GO!” Tyler shook his head, growing frustrated. He just wanted to warn him about Brie’s return into Tyler’s life.  

Fed up with trying, Tyler walked away, leaving Sam oblivious to what was about to ruin his life as he knew it.

When Sam got home, he walked in to Kaleah staring at a god awful painting from side to side. She turned her head one way, stepped back and turned her head the other way.
“What are you doing?” Sam interrupted her. Kaleah jumped at Sam’s voice.
“Gosh…you startled me!” Kaleah said, not looking away from her painting.  

“Did you paint this?” Sam asked. Kaleah nodded. “Why did you hang it here?” He asked, unsure if he should tell Kaleah that he didn’t like it.
“It’s too dark outside to see it in natural light and there’s not enough room on any of the walls upstairs to be able to hand it up and look at it. I need to see it from different angles so I can decide if it’s a keeper or a seller. What do you think?” 

Sam scratched his head. “Honestly?” He asked, hesitantly.
“Honestly. Brutally honest, in fact. Don’t worry…you won’t hurt my feelings.”
“I hate it.” Sam blurted quickly. “But maybe that’s just me…”
“No, you’re right. It’s not the best painting in the world.” Kaleah smiled, looking back at her painting sideways. Sam turned to walk into the living room, noticing a gray guitar propped up on a stand in the corner.
“Is this yours?” He asked, pointing at it. Kaleah joined him. 

She picked up her guitar and looked over at Sam.
“Want to hear me play?” She asked, growing red in the cheeks. “I’m not very good…” Sam nodded, excited. She began to play the song “Pictures” by Sheryl Crow. Sam tapped his foot and bobbed his head for a few moments as he listened in silence. Moments later, he sprinted towards the basement and ran to get his guitar. Kaleah stopped playing when she noticed Sam’s quick exit, thinking that he hated her music too. 

She sighed in relief when he returned with his electric.
“I know that song as well…” Sam said, tuning his guitar quickly. “Now, I know it might sound weird with an acoustic and an electric playing together, but let’s try and finally get our jam session!” He began playing the song with the base line. Kaleah listened and waited for her queue to jump in. Once she got it, she started strumming her strings and singing along.  

They played a few songs together and wasted a couple hours laughing and goofing around. Kaleah finally got tired enough to put her guitar down.
“Oh…Sam?” She said, as Sam was finishing his last set of notes. He put his guitar down too. 

“I totally forgot to give you that rent cheque today!” She said, startled. “Why didn’t you remind me?”
“Oh, I meant to, but I forgot and didn’t realize until I was at work. I headed over to Jacosta’s house on my break and made her out a cheque. You can pay me back when you can.”
“How much do I owe you?” Kaleah asked, worried.
“A grand…” Sam slowly spoke. Kaleah’s eyes widened and jaw dropped when she heard the outrageous sum.
“Are you joking?” She hollered. “Rent in Iron Horse is barely over a couple hundred dollars!” Sam grew confused.
“Did you not know how much rent was before you came here?” He asked. Kaleah shook her head. “Then why would you come here?”
“My mom set everything up financially. She paid my first month’s rent and damage deposit. She didn’t want me to try and pay her back for it, so she never told me how much it cost her.” Kaleah sighed. “I only have just over a thousand dollars in my bank! This cheque will basically run me dry!” 

“Well then you should get a job!” Sam explained.
“How can I get a job when I only have a temporary living situation here?” Kaleah whined. “Nobody will want to hire someone who is moving back home in half a year!” Sam winced at the thought of one day loosing Kaleah.
“I think there is something you can do for temporary living…there’s a program down at City Hall. You sign up in this book and they’ll look for a temporary job for you.” Sam remarked.
“Really?” Kaleah smiled. “Why didn’t you say something earlier?”
“I didn’t think you needed a job!”
“Everybody needs a job, Sam!” Kaleah teased. “Duh!” Kaleah and Sam talked for a few more minutes before deciding it was time to call it quits and go to bed.

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