*~*" Please donít say I love you, those words touch me much too deeply. And they make my core tremble. I donít think you realise the effect you have over me. "-Near Me Always, Jewel*~*
6 months laterÖ..
Sam reached into the bunk and grabbed some of the last paraphernalia off the shelf. Her hands latched onto a picture frame and she smiled as she looked down at it and the picture it contained. The picture had been taken when they were in Hershey, Pennsylvania. They were in a theme park and his arm was around her shoulders while she made bunny ears on him with her hand behind his head. Both of them had huge grins on their faces at their new found friendship. That picture had been taken about 5 months ago, and it was evident. Zac looked a lot different now from the impish face he had once had. Now it was replaced by manly features that became more distinct every day. Samís hair had reached to about two inches above her waist and had spring green streaks going throughout it. Sheíd advanced farther into the world of woman hood as well.
Finally she set the picture in her bag and zipped it shut. That was the last of her stuff. Sam swung the backpack on and grabbed her plane ticket off the top of her bed that was now just a mattress. Her suitcases were already off the bus and waiting for her. When she reached the bus, she turned and looked at it one last time, tears threatening to rise to her eyes. She grazed her fingers over the driverís seat and shutting her eyes as memories washed over her like the fresh spring rain of West Virginia in the mountains.
"Sam? Are you ready to go?" Megan called from outside the bus, shifting from foot to foot.
"Donít get your panties in a freaking knot! Iím coming!" She tugged at the bottom of her shit to straighten it out, looking down for an instant while her eyes scanned the shirts letters from upside down. ĎI donít suffer from insanity. I enjoy every minute of it.í
Zac had a matching one and was probably wearing it this very instant. At the thought of Zac, her heart twinged a saddened beat. Sheíd grown close to him and was sorry to see the tour end. But now the feelings for him werenít just friendship. They were an Ďitemí now. And they had been one for at least 2 months. She indulged on the memory of how it had come about, as the scene unfolded in her mind.
Zac leaned back against the cool metal railing that formed a line as they waited for the ride in Atlantaís ĎSix Flags Over Georgiaí.
"Are you going to get sick to your stomach on this one?" He teased, poking her stomach a little for emphasis.
"No. Are you going to scream like a little girl?" She asked him, just as jokingly.
"Maybe. Let me try it. AHHHHHH!!!!" He screamed as feminine as he could, a good half of the line in front and behind them turning to stare and raise eyebrows.
Zac blushed a little before looking around too as if trying to figure out who had screamed.
Sam smirked to herself before acting as he did and looking around before just shrugging with the rest of the crowd and returning to little chat.
She reached over and smacked him lightly on the arm. "Way to go, swift."
"Yeah, I am swift arenít I?"
"Sure Zac. As swift as a sedated mongooseÖ" She returned, smiling. He just grinned in response before the people in front of them boarded the ride and the metal bar came down again, stopping them from getting on. Samís brown eyes traced the looping and speeding motions of the cart on the track. Her stomach started fluttering with just the thought of her being on that ride in a few moments. As if knowing what was going on inside Sam, Zac rested his hand on her shoulder.
"Are you sure you want to ride this? We donít have to if you donít want to."
"Iím sure. Youíve waited all day to ride this. Címon, itíll be our turn soon." She reassured him.
"Thanks Sam. Youíre a real sweetie."
He kissed her cheek and she whirled around to face him.
"Zac, what did I tell you the last time you kissed me?"
Zac gulped and looked at her. He didnít think she would really decapitate or maim him, but she would probably try and seriously injure him along the way.
She nodded thoughtfully. "Much better."
She kissed him on the cheek quickly and nearly gave the guy a heart attack. He looked at her in shock before trying to smile coyly and stand closer to her.
She looked at him out of the corner of her eyes and resisted the urge to laugh at him, trying to play it cool and suave.
"Will you go with me?"
She was silent for a moment and when she opened her mouth to speak, the cart came down, ready for the next bunch of people to board and ride.
She got in and pulled down the shoulder bar black padded thing that came down over her and kept her from flipping out and off. Zac sat next to her and did the same. Everything was quiet for a few moments while the rest of the passengers got on.
Sam looked away from him and out at the sun scorched theme park.
He turned to face her eagerly.
"Yes?" He asked, waiting for her to say what she was planning on.
"ALRiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiighhhhhhttttt" his words were turned into a kind of scream when the roller coaster suddenly took off and down the deep bend.
"Samantha Lorene Vaclavik! You have got 2 seconds to get out of the doorway of that bus and onto the ground so that we can leave." Megan announced grumpily. Samís little zoning out episode hadnít been too highly appreciated.
"Iím coming, Iím coming." Remorsefully, the 17 year old brunette stepped off the bus and followed Megan dutifully to the cab.
She climbed in after her best friend, shutting the door behind her firmly and hanging her head. The guys had promised to be there before they left. Megan and Sam had just dropped the bus off in the designated parking space of the hotel that the guys would come to that night.
"Are they off recording again?"
"Yeah. You knew they wouldnít be able to come, donít act like it surprised you." There was nothing soft or regretful about Meganís voice. Only the grating harshness of someone losing her grip on a lot more than there friendship.
Samantha had noticed that too. When Ike and Megan made their relationship public, a lot of things had happened. Some negative, some positive. But the attention was taking itís toll on her best friend and their friendship as well.
After the taxi drive from Hell, they finally arrived at the Los Angeles airport and got their suitcases out of the trunk.
Stopping at one of the desks only long enough to get their baggage tagged and taken, they hurriedly walked in the direction of their terminal and waiting area.
As soon as they entered the area, the woman called out of the intercom. "Flight 217 to Tulsa, Oklahoma now boarding. First class now boarding." She repeated the announcement once again and Sam caught herself looking around quickly and pleadingly, as if expecting to see the guys somewhere in that mess of a crowd.
What seemed like moments later, the intercom announced again. "Flight 217 to Tulsa Oklahoma now boarding. Sections A through F now boarding." Once again, she repeated the announcement. Now Samís senseless searching was becoming desperate.
"Come on Zac. You promisedÖ"
He was still a no show.
"Flight 217 to Tulsa, Oklahoma now boarding. The rest of the seats will now be boarding." The announcement was repeated and Sam finally gave up and sombrely reached down to her side to pickup her backpack.
She watched as a tan hand gripped the backpack strap and picked it up for her. Sam raised her eyes to see Zacís warm chocolate eyes looking into her own.
"Told you we would come." He whispered as she threw her arms around him.
"I know you did. I knew you would." She kissed him softly before being interrupted by the announcements.
"Final call for Flight 217 to Tulsa, Oklahoma. Final call." Sam looked begrudgingly at the woman with the announcement mic before finally saying.
"Thatís my flight. Iíve got to go."
"I know." Zac nodded, trying to hide his sadness. Sam hated it when people cried over her.
"Maybe Iíll see you when you get back to Tulsa." She offered him, glaring at Megan who was tugging violently on her sleeve.
"Megan, cut it out or I will personally beat the shit out of you right here right now."
Megan backed down, seeing the immediate anger in Samís eyes.
"Maybe." Zac returned her to the conversation.
"Well, Iíve got to go. Later babe."
"Hey! Samantha??" He called after her as she faced her back to him to go.
"Yeah?" She looked back at him.
"You drive me crazy."
"I know." She grinned at the same time he did before being tapped again on the shoulder by Megan.
She turned and boarded the plane, followed by Megan who had just left the embrace of Ike. Hastily, she reached up and wiped the tears away that were ready to spill over and stream any minute.
With nothing more to say between the two of them, Megan and Samantha sat side by side on the ride home.
"Girl, you know what you were doing the whole time we were on that tour?" Megan finally spoke, once they were a couple thousand feet above ground and 30minutes from Tulsa.
"Driving him crazy." Sam answered gleefully.
"Will you see him again?"
"But of course. Iíll make sure of it."
"Driving him crazy." Megan muttered under her breath before laughing at her best friends humor.
"She was definitely driving him crazy." She continued under her breath.
Green Eggs And Hanson