~ Chapter 2 –The Love We Give ~
Me: “Oh my gosh that’s terrible! What happened?”
He stood and said, “Car crash. She was turning in an intersection and a man going 100 mph sped right through making her car flip over in the middle of the road…..” His voice trailed off as he choked quickly spewing out the last few words.
Everything faded from my mind. My hands became numb and I forgot that I was holding Jamie’s hand. I forgot Ryan and Nash were also there. I forgot where I was. I just looked at Ian’s eyes darkening with sorrow as he looked down fighting tears. I moved closer to Ian and once I was standing right in front of him he didn’t even look up or flinch, but I could see his chin twitching as he continued to fight tears. I didn’t know Olivia Keaggy, but I had seen her in pictures and Ian talked a lot of her. From what I gathered she was very down to Earth and a girl who didn’t deserve to die. I stared at Ian for a while and right when a tear was about to fall down his face I darted my hands and then arms between his and his upper chest and hugged him tight. He slowly returned my hug as a thank you for that comfort since he was too choked up for words.
I pulled away and looked him straight in the eyes, which was when I noticed I had stopped that tear from falling. I told him, “Sorry, I’m a hugging person and I thought you could use a hug.” and gave a weak smile. He twitched a smile, but that was all I got. This time with all seriousness I said, “I’m so sorry.” I didn’t want to say anymore knowing I would probably trigger nerves and make him cry even more. It was ok though because after I said that his eyes changed in emotion and I could tell he knew I really meant it.
Nash: “…..Now what?” Nash asked with hesitation, not wanting to be rude or interrupt.
Ian wiped a tear just before it fell and said, “My mother wants me to catch the next flight to Nashville with you guys and morn Olivia’s death for a week. We’ll have to cancel some of the tour or push it back, but I think this is a big enough occasion. Is that alright you guys?”
Ryan: “Yes! Of course it’s ok, we know you are going to want us to be there and we are happy to be there for you! I’ll call our manager and tell him everything and work out a new schedule for the tour. All of our luggage is in the van so we can catch the next flight tonight if there is one.”
Nash: “I’ll start tweeting!” Nash waved his phone around letting us know he would be telling the fans he was sorry from all of us about canceling tour dates and spreading the news to other people.
Ian: “Thank you guys! I’ll call my mom back and tell her we’ll be on our way.”
While everyone else was on their phones busy about working all this out, I couldn’t help, but continue to think about Ian’s sister and what had happened to her. Jamie turned to me and I looked up at him with sorrow in my eyes and he gave me a reassuring look and said, “Are you all right?”
Me: “I don’t think so…..I mean this was so unexpected and I know I didn’t even know her, but I’m just one of those people that really get touched. Ian, I know him and he would talk so much about his sister, he loved her! It’s so sad to see this happen.” Jamie gave me a soft kiss on my forehead, I felt his angel soft lips gently press against my head. “I wish there was something more I could do! Plus with you guys leaving so soon, I just got to see you. I looked deep into his eyes so I wouldn’t forget the real and in person look of them.
Jamie paused for a bit and then his faced changed as an idea hit him hard in the head, “Why don’t you come with us!?” A huge smile stretched across his face at the thought, though mine drooped.
Me: “What?! I couldn’t do that!!!” I almost shouted as the thought took place in my head. Jamie grabbed my shoulder with his free hand and nudged me further away from the guys.
Jamie: “Why not?! You are going to be off for fall break this week and we’ll pay for your plane ticket and everything!” He asked extremely worried that I wouldn’t be saying yes. Did he really expect me to just leave and go with them right there and then to Nashville for a week?
Me: “Well, how would I ask my parents? I may be eighteen, but I at least have to tell them and they may not approve of this. Although, they are very understanding and very trusting as well and besides, the guys would rather not have me there.”
Jamie: “Are you kidding? We would love having you there!!! The way you just hugged Ian, he needs that support right now!”
Me: “Ok well what about your families? None of them know I exist, and I’m supposed to come back with you guys like hey, they met me on Twitter two months ago and we are all best friends now! I won’t be judged as a stalker freak at all!” A strong sarcastic tone escaped my mouth with that last sentence.
Jamie: “Well that is what happened. Maggie knows you though! Ian tells her about you very often and says she even wants to meet you!” He would not stop! Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to go more than you could think, but I can’t just impose myself on their families like that!
Me: “Jamie, I-I just don’t think it’s nice to your families, I would come across as rude! I don’t want that as a first impression.” I said in a calmer tone because I had realized that I had been getting quite loud.
Jamie: “You won’t! I’ll tell them it was my idea! And I’ll tell them how nice you are and how well you comforted Ian in this time of need.”
Jamie frowned and turned to the guys, “Hey you guys, do you think it would be ok if Alexa came with us to meet our families and stays with us? Do you think they would approve of her?”
Ryan: “That would be awesome! They would definitely love her, and she could stay at our house!” My face stretched at hearing that from Ryan.
Ian: “Yeah! You could help support my family; they would love you as well! And you’ll get to meet Maggie, you guys would love each other!”
Nash: “That would be really great! We could all get to know you a little better and spend more time with you! My sister Skye will probably be there and you could make really good friends with her too!”
They all went back to what they were doing and Jamie turned back to me, with his eyebrows raised and an ‘I told you so’ face staring straight at mine.
Me: “Alright fine! Let me at least call and ask my parents.” I smiled really big and a huge wave of relief flushed over me as I realized that everything would be ok and their families would accept me just nicely. Now if only I could get a yes from my parents.
Jamie: “YES!” He looked up into the sky like he was thanking the Lord and grabbed me from under my arms and lifted me up real quick which caught me off guard and I gave little shriek making the boys turn around to see what was going on and they smiled and laughed at the sight. “She’s coming with us!” He practically shouted at them. They all cheered, but then I killed the moment when I said I still needed to talk to my parents first. They all wished me good luck and I started to walk to my room alone after Jamie gave me a reassuring hug and kiss on the cheek.
* * *
I walked down the hall alone entering my room knowing this would be a hard thing for my parents to let me do, but I knew that they trusted me a lot and they would allow me if I just played my cards right.
I pulled out my phone and dialed the house number. It rang for a little bit and then my mom picked up.
Mom: “Hello sweetie! How are you, everything alright?” I loved hearing my mom voice even over the phone.
Me: “Yes, everything is fine. Is dad there?” I wanted to make sure it was alright with both of them.
Mom: “Yes he is, why?”
Me: “Put the phone on speaker, I need to talk to both of you.” There was a pause and then I heard my dad.
Dad: “Hey beautiful!”
Me: “Hi dad. There is something I want to ask you guys.”
Mom: “Of course honey, we’re right here.”
Me: “Ok so uhm, is it ok if I go to Nashville with the members of Hot Chelle Rae tonight and stay there till Saturday? Ian’s sister died in a car crash accident and they want me to come and meet their families and honor her death for a couple days.” They didn’t say anything for a while and I wondered what they were thinking.
Mom: “……I’m fine with it.” And that was when I thought she was kidding. She wasn’t. My mom was a very reasonable person and she knew when things went too far over the limit, she always had just about the right knowing for these sort of things.
Dad: “…What?” He was looking at my mom in shock and I knew she was looking back at him with that stare women have telling men not to mess with them, we know what we’re talking about.
Mom: “Yes, she is 18 years old, if she is old enough for college and an apartment and a car then she is also old enough to be far away from us. Plus this will also be good experience for her.” My dad didn’t say anything. “Of course there will be conditions you will have to fulfill because we just want to make sure you’re safe.” My dad lightened up when he heard her say that, with my dad as long as there were responsibilities I would have to attend to he was fine with anything. “One, you must call us once you get there, and text me before you go to bed. Two, we will give you 200 dollars for emergency only money, so spend it on nothing but emergency!”
Me: “Ok, but I can still bring my own money to shop right?”
Mom: “Oh honey of course you can, plus I’m your mother, I’ll give you more money for that! There is another condition for that though, if you do go shopping and spend the money I give you, you have to bring back something for me!”
Me: “Hahaha, of course mom thank you!” At this point I couldn’t wait to run back to the living room and hug Jamie and tell the boys I could go!
She smiled at the thought of her oldest daughter growing up or well, being a grown up. She then asked my dad, “What do you think? Anything to add?”
Dad: “I want to say I do, oh yes I do! They are all older so when it comes to them going out to have drinks or drinking you know what is and isn’t right!”
Me: “I know dad, and don’t worry, Jamie is only 19 so he can’t drink either.”
Dad: “Alright….You may go.”
Me: “Oh! Thank you guys so much!” I wished I was there so I could hug them! “Tell Emma (my 10 year old sister) that I love her and I say goodbye!”
Mom: “Of course we will! You have fun sweetheart!”
Me: “I will! Bye Mom, Dad, I love you guys!” I hung up quick with the urge to sprint out of the room so fast I would hit my head on the door.
* * *
I darted back to the room with the boys skidding around all the corners and stopped when I reached the living area to find they had all been waiting for me. They stared at me intently waiting for my answer. I didn’t speak for a while and I wasn’t sure why, I think it might be because they were all staring at me weird. Jamie stood up after having seated himself, worried because I hadn’t spoken yet. He walked over to me and wrapped his hand and arm around my waist and I twisted mine up his back.
Me: “They said that……I can go!!! XD Yay!!!” They all jumped up saying yay that’s great! Jamie turned to me and curled his arms around my neck and dug his face in between his arms and my hair and I slung my arms around his back holding him tight. :)
I packed two matching purple suit cases and a matching purple duffel bag with the things I wanted to bring like clothes, my phone, laptop, iPod, and shoes, hairbrush/toothbrush, toothpaste, and snacks in duffel bag for when I get hungry on the plane, my journal, pencils and pens, etc.
Jamie helped me pack my things and Ryan looked up tickets to Nashville, they are so nice they are paying for my ticket! I put on my old converse that matched with this outfit nice enough and with the help of Nash and Ian, put my luggage into the back of the car. I called Mariah to tell her what had happened about confessing and how good that went, then how Ian’s sister is dead and why I’m now on my way to the airport to fly to Nashville to meet Jamie/Ryan, Nash, and Ian’s families! She was so shocked by this, but so happy that the boys had approved. I promised her I would call her Sunday night and update her and that I would be back Saturday. We then said goodbye and hung up. I felt bad leaving her alone for the whole week, but hopefully she’ll call some of our other friends and go out to clubs and have fun!
Jamie and I sat in the very back seats in the van together; you know the ones that are usually tucked away back there? Ryan drove while Nash sat in the passenger’s seat and Ian sat on the left seat in the middle section. We made a quick stop at my parents’ house so I could collect the money they were giving me and to say goodbye. Then we continued for the airport not too far away.
We had gotten tickets for a 12:40 am flight. Security had beefed up since the last time I went through it which was about 2 years ago. We eventually got through all the chaos, and I was happy to be able to sit in the plane seat even though they were not the most comfortable seats in the world. I sat by the window to my right with Jamie to my left, Ryan was in front of Jamie, Ian in front of me and Nash right behind us.
We landed around 7:30 am because we took two flights to get there and arrived at 8:00 to the Ian family house, we decided to come here first because we knew everyone would be here waiting for us. I was nervous because I was at last going to meet the family of my new friends, from my favorite band Hot Chelle Rae! I was five times as nervous as I was when I was thinking about the guys coming to meet me and telling them about my new found relationship with Jamie. We all stepped out of the car and followed Ian inside one by one, Ian, Ryan, Nash, Jamie, and then me.