When I closed the door behind me in my room, I saw my sisters all sitting on my bed in a row, waiting.
Michelle made the first move. “So?”
“Success!” I cried, and ran to them, throwing myself down onto the bed, with them catching me.
“I’ll get the music!” Claire said, getting up to turn on Vampire Weekend. This was a celebration mode. Hence, the Vampire Weekend.
“Let’s party!” Alli said, grabbing Michelle and me and pulling me off the bed.
All of four of us danced like crazy people for at least a half hour. Then I turned off the music. I didn’t want to push our luck.
They turned to stare at me. My sisters loved to dance, even more than me, which was saying a lot.
“How dare you.” Claire said, giving me ice cold stares.
“I didn’t want to push the luck.” I said, explaining my illegal actions.
“Oh.” All of them flopped on my bed, as tired as me.
“I’m going to the boardwalk and then shopping.”
“Meeting him?” This came from Michelle.
“I knew it!” Alli said, punching her fist in the air. “Pay up people!” Claire and Michelle pulled out their wallets and grabbed some cash.
“What the hell are you doing?” I was so confused. They bet on me?
They all stopped, apparently having forgotten my problem with betting. “Whoops.” Alli muttered.
“Leave if you are going to bet. No contaminants in my room!” I practically yelled. One of my earliest boyfriends had gambled, and then gotten beat up because of it. In front of me.
“Sorry Nic.” Michelle and Claire said, but didn’t move.
I reached over and grabbed them by their shirtcollars, and then dragged them to the door.
“Bye!” I said, and shut the door. Alli was now facing me, shocked. “You too.” I said, and opened up the door for her.
“Sorry babe.” She said, and shut the door behind her.
Once she had left I sank to the floor, bawling. That night flooded back to me, clear as day.
“Jonah!” I yelled above the music. “Where are you?”
“Nicole! Come here! I want you to meet someone!” I could hear his voice above the music, the only thing I wanted to remember.
“Coming!” I replied, and tried to weave my way through the crowd. It took me a bit longer than expected, and by the time I got to Jonah, he was on the floor. Bleeding. Not awake. “Jonah!” I screamed and sank down next to his side. “Wake up… Come on.” I picked up his head and cradled it in my lap. “Jonah…” I whispered, barely audible above the yelling and music of the pool hall.
“Miss?” I looked up to see a nice boy holding towel, in front of me.
“Oh. Thank you.” He handed me the towel, and I wiped the blood away from Jonah’s perfect face.
“Do you need any ice?” He asked, trying to be helpful.
“That would be great.” I replied, and continued to nurse Jonah’s wounds. “Baby?” I asked. He had just begun to call me that, and I knew that is what I would forever call him. He would always be mine.
“Here miss.” The boy had come back and was holding out some ice.
“Thank you so much.” I replied, and pressed the ice to Jonah’s temples where the bastard had punched him.
The boy was still standing there, but I ignored him. All I wanted was for Jonah to be awake, and with me. That was all I cared about.
That’s when I heard it. His voice. “Nicole?” He whispered.
“Jonah.” I replied, and cupped his bloodied face in my hands.
“I love you.”
“I love you too Jonah.” I replied.
“Can we go?” He asked.
“Do you feel all right to be in the car?” I asked, not wanting to hurt him.
“Anywhere but here.”
“All right then. Let me help you up.” I stood up and put his arm over my shoulder, helping him to stand. It felt like an endless walk to his car. “Keys?” I asked, once we got there.
“Back pocket.” He replied.
I reached in his back pocket, and curled my fingers around the keys.
I helped Jonah into the backseat, and then went around to the driver’s side. I inserted the key in the ignition, and turned. Thankfully, the car started. Music blared form the speakers, Spoon, the same song we had been listening to on our way here. I switched it off, not wanting to disturb Jonah.
I turned around in the seat, and saw that Jonah was asleep. I put my hand on his head just to make sure, and was relived to discover that he was still alive. Good. Now I needed to take him somewhere. Places scrolled through my brain. My house, his house, Katie’s, Jeff’s. I decided on Jeff’s house, knowing that Claire was there and she would help me.
Jeff was awake, along with Claire. Jeff helped me get Jonah out of the car while Claire made up a bed on the couch. I stayed by Jonah that night. All night. When he woke up, I took him home, and told his parents that we had ran into the school bully, and I had taken him home. That was the last time I saw him. He moved away the next day.
My brain churned, processing everything that I had remembered, tried to put behind me. But I could never forget Jonah. Never. I pulled my phone out from my back pocket, and found Jonah’s number, still programmed into my phone. My finger lingered over the TALK button, and I eventully pressed down, wanting to hear his voice more than anything.
All I heard was static. Then a voice. “Hello?” I couldn’t tell, was it Jonah’s?
“Jonah?” I asked, cautiously, hoping it was him.
“Who is this?” He asked, and I knew it was Jonah.
“It’s Nicole.” I could hear breathing and then a door shutting.
“Baby. Oh my gosh. It’s you. I’ve missed you so much.” It was him. My Jonah. I didn’t lose him. My throat began to choke up and I felt tears coming on.
“Jonah. I love you.” Was all I could manage.
“I love you too Nicole. I want to see you so bad. Where are you?” He asked. I could feel the desperation in his voice.
“I’m at home.”“Expect me. I’m coming.” He said, and then he said, “I love you, and I’m coming. I promise,” and then he hung up.