…And Then…He Kissed Me
By: Jamie Sommers
Rated: PG 13 (for language)
Synopsis: Jamie Sullivan has been hurt in her efforts to help Landon with the school play and refuses to give him the time of day. Landon Carter has been doing everything in his power to change her mind. Will he?
Chapter 3: …Three Steps Back
As I stepped closer to the school bus I felt my heart beat faster and faster. ‘Will you be here today? Are you sorry about what you did? What’re you going to do when you see him Jamie? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. But what about forgiveness? Forgiveness?’ I listened to my own words and realized that the right thing to do would be to forgive him for his mistake and put it behind me. I continued to tell myself that very same thing as I took my seat on the bus next to Gina.
I fought off the urge to see if he was sitting in his usual seat, but something inside of me knew he was there and that he was watching me. I heard his voice a few minutes after the bus was set in motion.
“Jamie…listen. About yesterday. I should’ve been straight with my friends, but…you know how it is?”
“No. I don’t. Why don’t you tell me how it is? You know what Landon? I think you said it all yesterday and I know I have nothing to say to you.” ‘So much for forgiveness Jamie.’
“Jamie?” His voice came out in a strangled whisper and it took everything in me not to turn to him and tell him that everything would be all right. “Can’t we talk about this? Come on. Please.” He placed his hand on my arm and I could here his words echo through my ears, ‘In your dreams.’ “Jamie please?”
‘I have nothing left to say to you Landon. Not until you apologize and mean it.’ I could feel my stare burning into his eyes. He removed his hand from my arm and didn’t bother me again for the rest of the ride.
Every week I watched him do the same thing over and over again with Luis and every week I watched Luis get no further with his tutoring. Landon wasn’t able to reach him. ‘Find another way Landon. There has to be a way. This is your last shot.’ I noticed them leaving the building and after a minute or two my curiosity got the best of me…I had to know what they were doing--where they went.
“Okay it’s you…me…and the basket, we form the three corners of a triangle. Now take a step towards the basket.” I watched through the window as Landon took a step with him, “now I’m at the same angle to the basket as I was before?”
“So what did we just make?”
“Uh…A similar triangle?”
“YESSS! Yes. Okay, make me an isosceles.” Again Luis moved to make the perfect formation and Landon praised him by forgetting about schoolwork for a while and playing some basketball.
‘I guess you found a way to back in, huh Landon?’
He was on my mind all morning after that. I began questioning myself again. ‘Maybe you weren’t wrong about him? Maybe there is something good inside of him? Maybe you should forgi… He’s sitting in my seat.’ Gina and I went to take our normal seats on the bus when I noticed him sitting there.
“Why don’t we sit in the back Jamie?” Gina suggested and started making her way towards the back of the bus. She didn’t know exactly what had happened between Landon and myself, but she knew that there was something wrong.
“Actually…I was kinda hopin’ you’d sit with me Jamie.”
‘Do you really want to make this that easy for him Jamie? Well he did help Luis out. Yes, but none of his friends were here today. If I say yes Landon will we go back to you being ashamed to be seen with me? Two words Landon…that’s all it’ll take. Two words, I’m sorry. Can you say that?’
“Please Jamie?” ‘Wrong two words.’ “Sit with me?”
“I don’t think that would be a very good idea.” ‘I’m sorry Landon. I just don’t think I can trust you yet.’
I took the seat next to Gina and began rehashing the past few days. The more I thought about it the angrier I would get. ‘Why is this bothering you so much? Why are you letting this get to you?’ I decided that I would put it behind me once and for all. ‘Landon Carter has spent more time out of my life than in it so it’ll be no problem for us to go back to the way things were before.’ At least…that’s what I told myself.
We had play rehearsal that afternoon so Landon and I walked directly from the bus to the auditorium. It was a little awkward, walking two feet in front of him without saying anything, but until he said he was sorry and meant it, I just couldn’t excuse his behavior.
We tightened up our blocking, and all of us were prepared to do the run through without the aide of a script with the exception of Landon. ‘You should still be helping him Jamie, if only for the sake of the play.’
At the end of rehearsal Sally came up to me and asked, “What is up with Landon today? I mean hasn’t he even picked up his script and tried to study his lines?”
“I don’t know. Why don’t you ask him?”
She looked at me with a tilt to her head and asked, “Well…aren’t you helping him run lines?”
“Why not?” I just shrugged my shoulders. “Jamieeeeeee???” She whined.
I looked at her and sighed. I really didn’t want to tell her the truth--she had told me in the beginning not to help him--I really didn’t feel like hearing ‘I told you so,’ but then I realized I needed to talk about this with someone. I explained what had happened, what he had said to me by the lockers and I knew the minute I told her that it was a mistake. By the time I got to play rehearsal the next day everyone knew about it, including Miss. Garber. If I wasn’t humiliated before, I certainly was now.
The play was less than two weeks away and Miss. Garber was holding rehearsals every afternoon after school, which was the only time Landon, and I would exchange dialogue…literally. He no longer tried to talk to me; he barely noticed me and I wondered if I had made a mistake by pushing him away. I saw him walking towards me in the hallway and we glanced at each other, any other day I probably wouldn’t have turned, but I needed to know… ‘Are you watching me too?’ I turned around to see. He wasn’t. He just continued walking down the hall with his back towards me. ‘Face it Jamie, you’re not even a passing thought to him.’
Chapter 4: Curtain Call