Skyla has an interesting visitor in Chattanooga, who gives her an interesting offer. :)
Over the next few days, Skyla anxiously awaited Jared's annulment notice in the mail. As a week came and went, she wondered if he was really trying to get an annulment. She walked outside to go and get the mail and she noticed someone familiar getting out of a taxi at the curb.
"Shannon!" she exclaimed. She ran over to meet him.
Shannon reached his arms out to give her a hug as she came closer to him. She leapt into his arms and hugged him tightly.
"I've missed you so much! Just talking to you on the phone isn't enough satisfaction!" Shannon said in a muffled voice. "Oh, and Jared and everyone else are back in L.A., now, so if you go back as I go, then we'll have to go back west."
"Is that why I haven't heard from Jared?" Skyla asked him. She kept the annulment notice a secret from him, and was positive Shannon hadn't been told yet.
"Probably, yeah. He's told me some things, but not all," Shannon told her.
"So he told you that we're getting the annulment?" she asked him.
"Yeah," he said. "So tell me, who else is home with you?"
"Just me right now," she grinned at him. "My mom is out grocery shopping but she should be home soon. Come on in; I'll make you some tea."
Shannon grabbed his bags and followed her inside. She showed him to the guest bedroom (which happened to be right beside her bedroom) and, after he settled in, he followed her back down to the kitchen. She put the tea on to boil and then she sat down at the table across from him.
"It's been weird here without y'all," she told him.
"It's been weird without you. I really hope you'll go back to L.A. with me," he told her.
She grinned at him as she went back to the tea. She poured it into a pitcher and put some sugar and water in it. She set it down on the table between them.
"So what do you think?" he asked her. He reached over and grabbed her hand and kissed it as she continued to put stuff out for a surprise meeting between her parents and Shannon.
"I say yes. But-" she started, "You have to meet my parents."
"Not until Jared does. Please not until Jared does!" he told her.
"Aw, please? I really want you to meet my parents, especially my mom," she begged him.
Shannon thought over it. He really wanted to meet Skyla's parents but he also wanted to wait until after Jared met them. He didn't want her parents thinking that he was Jared. He'd just die of embarrassment if that happened.
While they were waiting, Shannon decided to strike up a small conversation with Skyla. “Why do you want me to meet your parents so bad?” he asked her quietly.
“My mom wants to meet you. So I figured I'd let you two meet each other at the same time,” Skyla said sheepishly.
At that time her mom came in carrying a couple of bags of groceries in each hand. “Skyla, can you come and help me? They're not heavy, I promise!” she said.
Skyla rushed to the door. “Coming!” she called.
“Don't worry, I got it!” Shannon told her, and went to help her mom for her. Skyla walked back over to her seat and watched as Shannon helped her mom carry in groceries. After Shannon carried in the last bag, Skyla began helping her mom put the groceries up. Her mom mumbled something about needing something from upstairs and left the kitchen.
“I got that,” he told Skyla as she reached to put some cereal in the cabinets.
She gave him a grin and put the plastic bags up. He walked back over to her and hugged her around her waist. She breathed in his cologne.
“I'm stealing your cologne,” she whispered to him.
“Go ahead,” he told her with a grin.
Skyla smiled. She wrapped her arms tightly around him and gave him a bear hug. “Hugging you is so different than hugging Jared.”
“Really? Like how?” he asked her.
“Like Jared is two inches taller...” she giggled.
“Height has nothing to do with it!” he whispered in her ear.
“You should know!” she laughed.
They walked upstairs together to discuss their dinner plans. “Maybe we can go out to a club or something?” she asked him.
“No, your parents wouldn't like that,” he told her.
Skyla looked at him. He had a point; her parents didn't like anything that might be considered fun in the slightest. They had only let her go to the concert in April because it was going to be on her eighteenth birthday and Jessey was going. Her parents trusted Jessey; they thought she was a good influence on Skyla.
“I haven't heard from Jessey since I got back,” she told Shannon. She pulled two bottles of water out of the fridge and passed one to him. He opened it and took a swig.
“Call her later; we gotta go out to eat,” Shannon told her. He grabbed her hand and lead her toward the front door.
“Wait! I gotta get my purse!” she laughed.
“Just get your wallet! You might need an ID; I'll pay,” he told her in exasperation.
Skyla smiled at him hesitantly and turned around to head back upstairs. She quickly grabbed her wallet and checked herself in the mirror; she let her now-light auburn hair down and figured that the rumpled blouse and jeans she had on were okay for wherever he was taking her. She had kicked off her favorite pair of Converse sneakers the second she had got home, but quickly pulled them on before running back downstairs.
“Five minutes and you're back! Let's go!” Shannon told her. He grabbed her hand. “We aren't stopping for anything this time; we are leaving!”
As Shannon called for a taxi, Skyla leaned against him and sighed. She had set her sights on just staying home and relaxing before doing anything like going out to dinner. But she wanted to make Shannon happy.
“The taxi will be here in about ten minutes,” Shannon told her.
“I'm going to leave a note for my mom,” she told him. She quickly scribbled a note on a notepad in the kitchen and headed out the front door with Shannon. They waited for the taxi for a few minutes, and while they were waiting he turned to look at her.
“I talked to Jared. He's been trying to get ahold of you,” he told her.
“My phone hasn't rang... at all!” she said.
Shannon looked up at the stars. “Just call him whenever you get back, okay?”
Skyla sighed. She didn't like the look on Shannon's face... at all.