Gone is nominated at the Deafening Silence awards, Itty-Bitty Fanfic.
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We walked in silence for a while, not really sure what to say.
"Sssssoooo…" it was really amazing how long you can stretch that word for.
"So what?" He asked.
"Ssssoooo how's life?" I asked him. Dumb, really dumb. It was really hard trying to see him as the same person 5 years ago.
"It's ok." He answered. Silence, I felt really awkward.
"Look, I have something to tell you ok?" I blurted out. He stared at me for a second.
"Sure, what is it?"
"ittwasmemwhoripeakdjg" I muttered.
"What?!" He sounded like he was on the verge of laughing.
"Don't laugh! It was me who ripped your shoelace at Paramus a few years ago." I told him, embarrassed.
"It was you?! You could've ripped my shoelace back home, y'know." He was truly laughing now.
"Yeah, yeah." Silence. I hated it. I remembered back to when he was just plain old Taylor Hanson, not Taylor Hanson THE rock star.
He was a lot easier to talk to 5 years ago. I remember going to their gigs and feeling special because I was at the front. But then, they got the record deal and everything changed.
"Hey, are you still here?" He asked me.
"Huh? Yeah, I am. Why?"
"Because we're at the front of your house." He told me.
"Ok, I'll see you soon." Without another word, I walked up my driveway leaving him bewildered standing at my doorstep. If I wasn't so mad, I would've laughed.
After they got the record deal, he seemed to change. He seemed more sure of himself, sometimes a little TOO sure. It sometimes got to a really maddening point. The others were nice but they still seemed different. I remember the last thing I said to Taylor when they were ready to drive to Los Angeles to record their album.
"Get me a pair of Mickey Mouse ears from Disneyland ok?" He had promised me that he would but that was 4 years ago. I doubt he still remembered.
The next day, he came over. We talked about nothing for a while, with him mainly talking and me uttering one syllable responses. He seemed to give up after a while.
"What's wrong?" He asked me. I couldn't take it any longer.
"What is wrong? You're asking me what's wrong? Don't you get it?!" I felt like I was going to start screaming any second now.
"Get what?!" He looked alarmed.
"It's been 4 years and you have not talked to me more than 5 times! All I got was a phone call at Christmas wishing me a merry Christmas and you were unheard of until the next Christmas! You're asking me what's wrong?! I'll tell you what's wrong! We were friends forever until you got that stupid record deal and you changed! I seemed to have gotten pushed back to the back of your mind until you remembered!" I gasped for breath. He just sat there, not moving, not talking. He was so still it seemed a bit freaky.
"Hey, you still there?" I asked him angrily, my anger still at boiling point. Without a word, he stood up and the chair scraped against the floor, making me wince. He walked to the door and looked back at me. His eyes locked with mine for a second and some kind of emotion flickered in there for a moment before it was replaced by something I couldn't figure out. He went out the door and walked away.
When I woke up the next morning, my anger still hasn't simmered down. I didn't understand how I could be mad at him for so long. We were friends forever yet…something different had happened. There was a knock at the door and I hurriedly put on my robe.
"Wait a minute, I'm coming!" In my hurry to get to the door, I almost knocked over a chair. When I pulled open the door, I slammed it in shock. When I realized what I had done, I opened the door.
"What are you doing here?" Still angry. He looked at me and said one word.
"What?!" I was too confused to be angry now.
"We're going back to Los Angeles to record another album." He said in a monotonous tone.
"But you just got here!" I protested.
"Well, it's clear that you don't really care whether I'm here or not isn't it?" He laughed bitterly. "See you soon."
Without another word, he pressed a package into my hands and walked away. I stood there looking at his retreating back until he was gone. What had happened to our friendship? I thought as I walked slowly back into my house. I sat down heavily on a chair and cried.
The shrill ringing of the telephone woke me up with a start. I looked at the clock and realized that I had drifted off to sleep and slept for almost 4 hours. I reached over and picked up the phone.
"Hello?" My voice was thick with sleep. I cleared my throat and tried again.
"Hello?" I waited for a response but there was nothing except a faint static noise in the background.
"Happy birthday." Taylor's voice came over the receiver.
"My birthday was a few months ago." I told to a dial tone. He had hung up. I felt like crying again. Suddenly, I realized I was still gripping the box he had given me in my right hand. I examined the outside before I opened it. It was a plain cardboard box, nothing special. When I opened the box and held the object in my hand, I felt a hysterical laugh coming on. I laughed and laughed until I started crying. The tears streamed down my face as I thought of the friendship I had lost. I was still crying as the last rays of the sun faded and I could no longer see the Mickey Mouse ears I held in my hand. The note attached to the ears fluttered to the floor gently but I did not bend down to retrieve it. I had memorized the note after reading it so many times.
"I was thinking of my promise to you when I bought this. It's been 4 years but I didn't forget did I?"