Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Another Installment of Fun and Games with K&K Week 4 Part 1

A quick recap:  I am currently working on a writing project with my twitter friend Karla Nellenbach.  We each take a turn writing up a part of the story and passing the baton back and forth.  Here is the my next installment.  When we last left Harper and Grace, Harper had just showed up at Grace's with latte's and bagels and announced they were going shopping.  Let's see how it went.

Once in the car and on their way, Grace tried keeping up a steady stream of conversation that she and Harper both seemed to need.   She talked about the outfit she’d already had picked out for Harper in her head.  She mused on stopping at the bookstore for the latest Karla Nellenbach novel.  With forced enthusiasm, she tossed out the idea of lunch and maybe hitting the spa after for mani/pedi's all around.

It didn’t seem to matter how hard she tried, that big elephant was there with them, riding shotgun right along with Harper.
Once at the mall, Harper dove right into shopping by pulling Grace to the shoe department inside of Nordy’s.  They oohed and ahed over designer shoes, one of Grace’s favorite past times.  Harper insisted Grace model every shoe in her size and even selected a pair for herself without Grace once having to badger.  
When they finally made it to the clothing section, Harper was like a dynamo, bulleting through the racks grabbing shirts and pants on her way to the dressing room.  Again, they tried on what appeared to be every article of clothing in the store  Once the marathon shopping session was over, they decided to fore go the spa and head out to lunch.  Choosing a Mexican restaurant they both liked found them sitting down to chips and salsa within minutes.

With a chip in one hand, Grace looked Harper in the eye for the first time that day, and announced, “Truman was waiting for me when I got home last night.”

“I heard.”

Scooping up salsa, Grace hesitantly asked, “Did he tell you what we talked about?”

Harper’s chip froze midway to her mouth.  “No.”

Grace looked down at her hands and started shyly, “It was actually a pretty interesting conversation.” Or at least it had been once she convinced him there was nothing wrong between her and Harper.  He had been like a dog with a bone regarding that one.

Harper leaned forward and grabbed Grace’s arm with a bracing grip.  “What did you say to him, Grace?  You didn’t say anything about…” But she couldn’t finish it, and before she even tried, she realized by the change in Grace’s features that she had been completely off base.

Sitting back in the booth to distance herself from Harper, Grace took in her friend’s expression.  Harper was scared and breathing fast, and if she wasn’t mistaken, that damned elephant had just joined them at the table.  Sliding her arm away from Harper’s grip, Grace tried to get them back to even ground.  “Actually, he asked me out for tonight. “

The excitement she had felt last night, which had already been tempered by the situation with Harper, seemed to lose more of its sparkle.  She wanted to be happy that Tru had finally asked her out, but was feeling guilty that she could feel this way when there was all of this shit going on with Harper.  Not that Harp was copping to any of it.  Nope, Harper was running herself ragged, acting very un-Harper like in order to convince Grace that everything was fine.

Harper smiled.  “Grace, that’s great.  Finally, right?”

Since it was now her turn to act normal Grace tried to summon a smile and answered, “Yeah, he took me by surprise with that one.”

“Where are you going?”

“A party, I think.”  Grace didn’t miss the way Harper bowed up at the word party, and wanted to kick her own ass.  As much as Harper might insist that nothing happened, it was becoming more and more clear something had.

“What time is he picking you up?”  Harper forced the words out.

While she was saying all of the right things, Grace felt as if she and Harper were putting on a show for each other.  Wanting to lean across the table and shake her friend, she sighed and answered, “Seven-thirty.”

The tension at the table was thick and rising.  In a moment, Grace was sure they would both be choking on it.  Before she could comment on it, the waitress was there with their lunch orders.  Grace fell on her chicken verde, thankful for something else to focus her attention on.

They sat, pushing their food around before Harper said softly, “I'm really happy for you.  Tru asking you out and all.  I know how long you’ve wanted this.”

Grace looked up with a smile.  “Yeah.”

“But I don’t want you to get hurt either, so just be careful.  He’s my brother and I love him, but he is still a guy.”

Grace put her fork down and cocked her head.  “Harper, I don’t think he’s going to declare his undying love for me or anything like that.  But he did say he hasn’t been able to stop thinking about me since our trip to Lake Geneva.”

Harper snorted her disbelief.  “Listen Grace…” But that was as far as she got as something caught her attention on the other side of the restaurant. 
Turning, Grace saw Mr. Haas had just entered with a blond clinging to his arm.  They were both windblown from the frigid temps outside and laughing with each other.  In a casual move, he pushed his sunglasses to the top of his head and leaned in to nuzzle her.
In a move more reflex, Grace raised her hand to flag down the popular teacher before realizing the implication and cringing inside.  Turning her attention back to her friend, she saw Harper frozen in place.  Eyes full of remorse, Grace mumbled a quick apology before turning her attention back to the couple making their way to the table.
Smiling, he was halfway to their table before his eyes locked on Harper and Grace didn’t miss the hitch in his stride.   Eyes wide and wild, Harper looked everywhere but at the music teacher. 
Smoothly, Grace stood and shook hands with the blond who introduced herself as “Bambi.”  They exchanged a few words, and Grace plastered a phony smile on her face while she made small talk.  Nothing happened at the party, my ass.

Mr. Haas spoke to Harper directly as they were leaving, telling her to enjoy the rest of her winter break, and the rest of her lunch, but it was clear that he was no more comfortable around Harper than she was around him.
Calmly, Grace sat back down and picked up her fork.  She was furious.  Furious with Harper.  Furious with Mr. Haas.  Furious with this deception she was helping Harper perpetuate.  Something had clearly happened between the two of them.  But this was Harper’s game, so they were going to have to play it out.  Looking her friend directly in the eye, she asked, “Bambi?  Can you even believe that?  Who names their kid Bambi?  Do you think she’s a stripper or something?”

Okay tell us what you think.  We can take it.  And don't hold anything back. Come back Thursday, when Karla updates us on the next installment.  Trust me, it is getting good!

Monday, November 29, 2010

And the winner is....

I have been suspiciously absent from my blog for the past two days.  I took off Thursday and Friday for the Holiday and it was great.

Our awesome friend from Seattle flew in and we spent some quality time together.  On Tuesday the boys went out on the boat.  I had to work.  Yeah, I was unhappy with that too.  After we went to McGuire's Irish Pub for some pints and food.  It took a little longer to get our food and the manager was so nice, he comped the entire meal.  How cool was that? 

On Wednesday the conned me to go the Naval Aviation Museum.  Don't get me wrong.  This is a great place to go and hang out.  I love seeing the displays and browsing the gift shop.  But the weather was pretty freakin' awesome and I really wanted to be on the water.  Unfortunately I was outvoted.  I didn't grumble.  Much. After we headed to the beach and stuffed ourselves on crab claws, calamari and oyster at Peg Leg's.  I helped myself to a couple of Blue Moons and was feeling pretty mellow by the time the hubs and I called it a night.

Thursday was all about the turkey and man was it good.  It was the husbands best effort yet.  We stuffed ourselves on all the trimmings and didn't even get to the pies and cakes until the next day.  

Friday we said so long to our friend and sent him home.  But it was really great seeing him and after this visit know it will not be the last time.  We picked up as if no time had passed, even though it was quite clear it had.  I can honestly say this was one of the best holidays ever.  I was sad to see it end.  

I hope all of you had a wonderful holiday as well.  Okay on to the winner of the book contest.  This months winner is Lenny Lee.  My buddy who hosts his own blog over at Lenny's World.  Congrats to Lenny!  I am hoping that after he reads the book he can guest post on my blog and tell me what he thought of it. 

So until tomorrow, tell me, how did your holiday go?


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Gobble Gobble Gobble

Lets start this posting with this...Karla's next installment with Fun and Games is already up so get over to her blog and catch yourself up with it.  As usual you can find all of the installments right up there.  Imagine me pointing my finger straight up.  See.  Right there.  The tab next to home.  Yeah, that's the ticket.  The one that says Fun and Games.  You can find all of our postings there, or if you are already caught up just hit here to go over and read Karla's next installment. 


Watch these first and know that I am wishing you all the best of the best this Turkey Day! 

If you like that one...you will really enjoy this one.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Fun and Games with K&K Week 3 Part 1

A quick recap:  I am currently working on a writing project with my twitter friend Karla Nellenbach.  We each take a turn writing up a part of the story and passing the baton back and forth.  Here is the my next installment.  When we last left Harper and Grace, Harper had declared NOTHING had happened at the party.  Let's see what happens next.

If you missed any of the earlier posts you can catch up by clicking on that tab up top labeled Fun and Games with K&K.

“Me either.” Owen said.  “Now what do we do?”

The street light highlighted the remnants of the night’s effects on Grace’s face, giving her an almost haunted look.   He guessed his didn’t look any better.  In fact, it felt as if he had taken one to the solar plexus. 
Grace braced both her hands on the steering wheel and said, “Now we get to the bottom of it.  And I swear to god, Owen, if Mr. Haas did something to Harper I will find out.”  With those final words, she put the car in gear.

After dropping Owen off, Grace headed back to her house lost in thought.  What should she do first?  She didn’t have anyone to turn to.  In that moment, she felt entirely alone and then had to laugh at the irony of that.  This wasn’t about her.  It was about Harper.  But Harper had always been her touchstone.  The one person she could go to when she needed an ear or a shoulder.  Harper had always been there. 

In truth, Grace thought that worked both ways.  After tonight, she was no longer so sure. 

It had been so obvious Harper was hurting.  For God sakes, she had been wearing her Dad’s old, battered, red Wisconsin sweatshirt with her snoopy pajama bottoms, her go-to for when she was sick or hurting.  Grace didn’t need to be a rocket scientist to see the ravages of emotion still visible on her friend’s face even though the TV had been the only light shining in the Simonson’s family room.

Pulling into the drive way, Grace sat for a moment hoping some divine inspiration would strike.  When none did, she mechanically made her way to the door. 

Truman Simonson had been sitting on Grace’s front porch for the better part of an hour.  He had been back from college for two weeks and had yet to see her.  Okay, so maybe he was avoiding her.  But he expected to be tripping all over her at the house and that just wasn’t the case.  At first, he didn’t think anything of it, but last Saturday night when Harper came back early acting weird, he decided the lifelong friends must have had a fight.

Truman was a freshman at the University of Wisconsin and while he loved the feeling of freedom he had being away from home, he missed his family.  And like it or not, for better or worse, Grace was a part of all that, which was why he’d decided tonight that he needed to get to the bottom of whatever was going on. 

Watching the Pepto-Bismol pink VW turn into the driveway, he smiled because the car was just so…Grace. 

Grace caught a movement out of the corner her eye and turned to find Truman sitting in her favorite double rocker on the porch.  “Tru?”

“Hey, Gracie girl.”

“Hey, yourself.  What are you doing here?”  Grace moved deeper onto the porch and sat down next to her second best friend in the whole world; or at least he used to be. 

While Truman had been home from school for almost two weeks, the two of them kept missing each other.  Secretly, Grace thought Truman was avoiding her after what happened before he left for school.  Honestly, she didn’t know why he should be embarrassed.  She was the one that totally humiliated herself by telling him how she felt.  It wasn’t his fault that he didn’t feel the same way back.

Truman studied Grace’s face.  He knew her as well as he knew his sister, and something was obviously wrong.  “Are you okay?”

Trying to smile, Grace said, “Sure.”  But it was too much.  Truman had always been her version of a knight in shining armor.  After everything that happened tonight, her emotions were much closer to the surface than she thought, and the avalanche took them both by surprise.

Tucking her head down, she leaned in and used him as her anchor.  True to form, he gathered her close and waited for the storm to pass. 
After, looking up through swollen, red-rimmed eyes she asked, “Have you been avoiding me?  Because it feels like you’ve been avoiding me.”

Truman smiled.  That’s what he loved about Grace, always got right to the point.  You never had to guess what she was thinking or feeling, and she never apologized for it. 

“Yeah, kinda.”

Using his chest for leverage, Grace pushed herself away and stood up.  Scrubbing her face with both hands, she moved to the opposite side of the large porch and leaned against the low wall that acted as a railing. 

She sat there for few moments, and he could have sworn he saw her mind actually working.   He imagined all types of gears shifting and spinning. 

Grace’s drank in his features.   Features, that were, as familiar to her as her own.  Truman and Harper both had dark hair, and light, glass green eyes.  It was remarkable really how the combination came out all feminine and soft on Harper, but all masculine and odd angles on Truman.

“I apologized for what happened.  You can’t hold that against me forever.  You’re one of my best friends, and I know you can’t help how you feel.” She had to clear her throat because the tears threatened to rise again. “But I don’t want to lose you as a friend.”

Truman stood up and moved to her because suddenly he needed to hug her.  He wasn’t sure where all of these feelings were coming from, but he was getting used to them.  They started right before he left for school.  They had gone up to the cabin on Lake Geneva for one final week.  He was down at the lake goofing off with friends when Harper and Grace came into view. 

She’d been dressed for a day on the water, just like always, lugging a large bag with snacks and books while Harper carried the small cooler and her guitar.  He could remember the sun bouncing off her hair and the line from a Robert Frost poem coming to him.  And just like that, everything changed

He pretty much avoided her at all costs after that, until the last night when they sat around the bon fire playing music and telling stupid ghost’s stories. 

That was the night she had screwed up her courage to tell him how she felt.  It had been almost eerie, since he had spent the previous days engulfed in the same emotions.  But he was leaving for college, and she was still in high school, and no way did he want to start that up. 

“I don’t think I could stand it if we couldn’t be friends anymore” she added before he folded her into another embrace.  Giving up the fight, she wrapped her arms around him and hugged him back for all she was worth. 

Rubbing her back in a soothing up and down motion he had seen his dad do a thousand times for his mother, he said, “Don’t cry.  Shh.  It’s okay.  You won’t ever lose me as a friend.  I promise.”

Nodding, Grace pulled back and smiled.  “It’s really good to see you.  I missed you.”

“I missed you, too.”

Moving back, Truman looked at Grace and said, “Okay now that we have that cleared up.  What the hell is going on with you and Harper?”

Okay, you know the drill.  Tell us what you think, because yes, Karla does lurk here to see what you guys are saying.  Make sure you swing by again tomorrow so you can catch her latest installment.  She is posting early again this week since Thursday is Thanksgiving.  I will have a link up to her blog so you don't miss any of it.

Monday, November 22, 2010

What I am Thankful for this year

With turkey day fast approaching I thought that it would be appropriate to do a posting on some of the things I am thankful for.  I know what you are thinking.  Yeah, we get another list this from wacky gal.  Big smiles all around.  Am I right?  Of course I am.  And because I don't want to bore you, I am only going to offer up five today.  And these five aren't even the most important.  Just five random things I am thankful for.
Fried Turkey.  I'm sorry, but I am so thankful for fried turkey I could cry.  I never had a turkey prepared this way until I moved to the south.  God Bless the south.  Captain Kid can fry a mean turkey but I can only get him to do it a couple times a year.  Thanksgiving being the number one day.  We also fry a turkey for Christmas and I can almost always get him to do one at least once during the summer.

Coke Zero.  I don't function well without at least one hit of caffeine in the morning.  The colder the better.  It's like an electric charge to my system when I get that first taste.  The sound the tab makes when I punch it through the can.  Pure joy!  I am not a coffee drinker, and don't apologize for it.  There was a bad experience in Japan that involved me, a twelve hour mid-watch and three pots of the foul smelling stuff.  So Coca cola....thank you.  From the bottom of my heart.  Thank you.

My iPad.  It is just plain mean that I mention this because I can guarantee a snarky comment from both Karla and Patty regarding this one, but it's true.  I've only owned my iPad for a couple of months and now cannot fathom how I survived without one.  If you don't have one, I am so sorry and if you do, I know you get exactly what I'm talking about.  This is one time giving into what I was jonesing for was a good thing.

My Kindle.  Okay, shoot me, I am doing another gadget.  Yes, I have an iPad and yes I can read on it as well.  But for reading outside, nothing beats my kindle.  During the summer we spend quite a bit of time on the water, boating.  This is how we choose to unwind after a stressful week.  And for me, reading is a big part of that.  Nothing, and I mean,  NOTHING can beat the kindle for how clear that screen is in the sun.

My Blogger Buddies and Tweeps.  Nothing brightens my day more than the comments and conversations I share here on Blogger and over at Twitter.  I have met some of the most amazing, Lenny Lee, and interesting, Patty Blount, and generous, Karla Nellenbach, and kind, Abby Mumford, and committed (no she is not insane) Linda Grimes, and wonderful, Jeannie Moon.  Just to name a few.  All of you come back over and over and leave me messages and share with me.  You all have made me a better writer and dare I say it, a better social networking friend.  So I thank you. 

Of course now I want to hear what you are thankful for.  Talk to me.  And of course if you are thankful for my blog, well that would just be the icing on the cake. 

Friday, November 19, 2010

My Eyes...My Eyes

Do you remember that episode of friends where Phoebe finds out about Chandler and Monica?  She is standing in the window screaming, "My eyes! My, eyes!"  One of my favorite scenes from friends.  Ever!

Yes this post is about eyes, but I digress.  Last weekend was another pretty busy weekend in the Breakey house hold.  

Captain Kid has been complaining recently about his eye site.  Not nagging or anything, just mentioning in passing that his eyes bother him when spends too much time staring at the computer or how the cheaters he has are no longer working.  Personally I think he just hated wearing them because he had to keep them on the end of his nose.  It was really cute, but he didn't need them to see for distance, only for close up reading.

Friday night we went out to dinner with some really good friends to celebrate fellow tweeter, @PattyBlount's birthday.  No, she wasn't there but we did have a toast in her honor.  We went to one of our favorite restaurants, a local Irish pub.  Anyway, the point here was he couldn't read the menu.  I had to read it for him, which irritated him to no end.  

He didn't complain, but I could tell how much it was bothering him.  He hasn't had his eyes checked in about three years but has had perfect 20/20 vision his entire life.

On Saturday we went and got his eyes checked and guess what?  He needs glasses.  And not just any type of glasses.  Bifocals.  I am not going to lie, this just tickled me.  

He picked out two pairs of glasses, cause it was buy one get one free, and was able to pick them up the same day.   For me having to wear glasses has been at times both trying and rewarding.  But for the most part annoying.  I have looked into getting the surgery but am not eligible because of my astigmatism.  

Okay, maybe that makes me small because I get such a charge out of his new glasses, but honestly I don't think he is bothered by it at all.  I told him it was refreshing that he was no longer perfect.  Of course his smart remark to that was he never was and if felt that he was on a pedestal it was only because I had put him there.  So, I knocked him off.  He looks pretty good from where I am standing now.  Glasses and all.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Book Hungry: All Creatures Great and Small

The book review below was a Book Hungry Club read.  All of the Book Hungry Members are posting a book review today on their blogs.  They are all listed in my blog roll to the right here, so after you read mine, go check them out too!

This months selection for the book hungry club is by James Herriot called "All Creatures Great and Small".  This was brought to us by Alyson Peterson and you can directly link over to her blog right here.  The rest of the book hungry clan can be found to the right in the blog roll under Book Hungry. 

I would like to start my review by saying that this is one book I am glad I did not miss reading.  Another selection, that if I were browsing in the local bookstore, I would pass right by.  Thanks to Alyson I had a reason to sit down and enjoy it.

This was a book to be savored.  That is the best way I can describe it.  It was a magical story told through the eyes of veterinarian who kept me constantly enthralled.  I loved how green he was when he started and the almost romantic ideals he had and how it was derailed by the everyday realities of what being a rural vet really entailed.

There were times that I felt that I was right there in the thick of it due to the stylistic writings of Mr. Herriot.  I was whisked away to the English country side by his descriptions and the hilarity of his stories.  

From the very first page you are thrust into his idealism of what he expected versus what he got.  I really liked the fact that through the stories he tells you get the sense that he is laughing at himself as well as sharing his view of the world from the inside of a barn, or any where else he may have had to perform his vocation.

The secondary characters were just as entertaining and I was totally charmed by them.  In a nut shell this is one book I would recommend to anyone.  Even the most hardened of folks will enjoy it.

So now for the give away.  If you follow my blog you are automatically entered.  If you don't that's okay, I am not going to make you follow me although I would love if you did.  But if you don't, just leave a comment below and you will be entered.  Simple really.  The winner will be announced next Friday.  Good Luck!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Who you gonna call?

Today Karla over at The Lastword is offering up her installment of this weeks Fun and Games with K&K.  Go over to her blog and check it out.  The reason she is doing it today instead of tomorrow is our book club posts their reviews tomorrow.  She is also planning on posting Wednesday of next week since Thursday is a holiday.

I also want to point out that I have added another page to the blog.  Do you see it?  Look up.  No below the name...there, yes that's it right next to the bright green tab that says home.  Check it out.  I will keep updating it with our weekly posts so they are all in the same place.

Since I knew I could not match or entertain as well as Ms. Karla this morning I have decided to just offer up a video for your viewing pleasure today.

Soooooo......check it out!

I'm gonna kick his ask!

So what did you think?  

By the way as I am writing this I am watching NCIS Los Angeles and the best line I have heard all week, "You don't kick a guy in his junk based on a hunch!"  I am still laughing.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fun and Games with K&K Week 2

A quick recap:  I am currently working on a writing project with my twitter friend Karla Nellenbach.  We each take a turn writing up a part of the story and passing the baton back and forth.  Here is the my next installment.  When we last left Harper and Grace, Harper was pretty much bent on keeping whatever happened at the party a secret.  Enjoy.

If you missed either of the first two parts you can find them here and here.

Grace’s fingers drummed furiously on Frenchy’s steering wheel to the beat of the Foo Fighters pouring out of the speakers, eyes glued to the door of Maestro’s Music.  No way was he getting past her again.  She tried unsuccessfully to catch Owen twice at school and both times she had the distinct impression he was dodging her.

It hadn’t been hard to find out who Owen Lancaster was.  New guy and uber talented like Harper.  Everyone who was associated with the music department seemed to know him.  A few well-placed questions and she had his class schedule and home address.  Since Grace didn’t have a shy bone in her body she had no problems marching up to his front door.  Unfortunately he wasn’t home, but his cute -she assumed younger brother- told her where she could find him.  

Now, it was almost nine, and according to store hours for Friday, closing time.  She was more than happy to wait.
Owen didn’t miss the neon pink VW parked in front of the store.   She was tenacious; he would give her that.  In fact he wasn’t sure if he admired it or was a little afraid of it.  Knowing Harper, she wouldn’t like him talking to Grace about what he had seen.  With that in mind he decided to duck out the back. 
Pulling his soft grey hoodie up with hopes of some semblance of disguise he turned the corner away from the store and came face to face with Grace Monroe leaning on his boss’ BMW.   He was adding stealth to that list of things she seemed to be good at.  

“Hey, Owen.  How’s it going?”  Like sitting in the dark on a stranger’s car waiting for someone she had never spoken to before today was normal?  Oh yeah, they were definitely made of steel. 

“Grace,” Owen acknowledged.

Cocking her head to the side, she remarked, “You don’t seem to be too surprised to see me?”

A preemptive strike was called for.  “Listen Grace, I don’t know what Harper told you about the party, but I don’t think we should be discussing what might’ve happened.  So, sorry.  But you need to speak to her about it.”

Confused Grace asked, “Party?  What party?”  Searching her memory banks, she stumbled across the get- together that Mr. Haas, the schools musical director, hosted at his house every year.  Just for band students.  “You mean the band thing from Saturday night?”

Owen took a step back, and Grace was on the scent.  Moving in on his personal space, Grace demanded, “What happened at the party Owen?  Did you do something to Harper? “

Raising his hands in supplication, Owen sighed, “No.  I didn’t do anything to Harper.”

“But something happened, right?”

Needing a moment, because Owen really hoped that what he caught sight of wasn’t really what it looked like, he turned and looked down the street praying for something to get him out of the interrogation she was currently subjecting him to.

When no high-speed car chases or lightning bolts appeared, Owen turned back and looked at Grace.  “I get it.  You guys are friends.”

“Best friends.” She interjected.

“Best friends.” He repeated.  “Well, Harper is my friend, too.  And I care about her-“

“If you care about her, tell me what is going on.  She blew me off for lunch and the last time she did that was because Danny Jacobson told her boys don’t kiss girls who wear glasses when we were freshman.  If someone hurt my friend, I want to know about it.”

“I’m sorry.  You need to speak to Harper.”  Owen started to move past her, but Grace was fast.  

Grabbing his arm, she stopped him with, “Owen what do you think you saw?”


“You said ‘I don’t know what Harper told you about the party, but I don’t think we should be discussing what might have happened.’  What do you think happened?”

Suddenly glad to have someone to share what he saw with, even it meant risking Harper’s wrath, Owen said, “I think Mr. Haas did something to Harper.”  He didn’t mention seeing Harper leaving the teacher’s bedroom or Mr. Haas following her down the hall all the while stuffing his polo shirt back into his khakis.  Owen was still reeling from the implications of it.  

Grace watched the emotions playing across Owen’s face and the first fissions of fear started to race.  “Screw this.  You know what?  You’re right.  I am going over to Harper’s right now.  I am getting to the bottom of this.”

This time it was Owen grabbing Grace’s arm to stop her departure.  “What are you going to do?  I could be way off base, and maybe nothing happened.  Besides it is late and…”  Owen stopped himself and ran his hand down his face.  She was right. 
Yes, he was new to the school, but he and Harper had become fast friends.  He enjoyed hanging out with her after seventh hour and talking about music.  If he had been hoping for more from Harper, she need never know.  Grace was right.  They had to get to the bottom of it.  

“You’re, right, let’s go.”  Owen did an abrupt about face and headed toward the front of the store. 
Surprise registered for only a second before she recovered.   Once they were both in the car and on the way to Harper’s, Owen remembered to ask, “So what happened to Danny Jacobson?”

Distracted, Grace asked, “Hmm?”

“Danny Jacobson, ninth grade.  Made fun of Harper’s glasses.” He prodded.

Smiling at the memory and finding it ironic that she could find anything to smile about she looked over and said, “He played the saxophone and had a tendency to leave it unattended in the band room during the day.  Someone dusted itching powder around the mouth piece.  Let’s just say he wasn’t kissing any girls for a while.”

Owen’s lips tipped at the thought before he and Grace both fell silent as they drove the ten minutes across town to Harper’s.  If what he suspected was true, Harper was going to need them.  The hard part was going to be getting Harper to admit it.  

Be on the look out for the next installment from Karla on Wednesday over at her blog The Lastword.
Wait, don't go yet, tell me what you think.