Winter’s Bliss: Chapter Three

Two days later, Christine lay curled up on the couch watching television with the sound off. Her mother was locked in her room with JD and strict instructions not to be disturbed. This meant any little sound could set her off so Christine remained as quiet as possible. Since Christine hated sub-titles because they bothered her eyes, she made up the dialog that was being said in the day time soap opera she was watching. Day time television was the worst and Christine felt that she made the storyline less boring. While she had no idea what was going on in the real show, in her version the main blonde chick, who she named Bianca, was cheating on her husband, Marco, with his twin, Polo. But what Bianca didn’t know was that Marco was cheating on her with her twin, Bruce. Yes, there were two sets of twins in the show and Bianca’s husband was gay, two things Christine never saw in a soap opera.

Suddenly, her show was interrupted by a swift knock at the door. Sliding off the couch, she shuffled over to the door, curious to see who it was. Swinging the door open she was surprised to see Jon standing there, looking slightly impatient. Since the incident from the other day Christine put off her plans to seduce Jon, knowing that when the time presented itself she would act on instinct. It seemed that the time she was waiting for arrived sooner than she expected. Not feeling completely confident, Christine hesitated not exactly sure what to do. The two stood in an awkward silence for several minutes before either of them spoke.

“Hi,” Christine finally breathed out breaking the silence.

“Hey,” Jon replied, looking a bit uncomfortable. An awkward silence began to hang over them again, but Jon was quick to break it this time. “We got some of your mail,” and he held out two letters that were clearly addressed to the Raymond residence.

Christine muttered, “Thanks,” as she reached out and took the two letters from him. She could feel the awkwardness filling the air once more, and she could sense that Jon could feel it too because he started to fidget.

“Well, I guess I’ll see you,” Jon said as he began to turn to leave. Christine knew she couldn’t let him go; that this would be the only chance she would get all winter break to get on his good side because saying he would see her around was not going to happen. They hadn’t said a word to each other in years, and Christine knew that if she let him go now they would probably never speak again.

“Wait, Jon!” Christine blurted out, throwing her arm out as if she were going to grab a hold of his shoulder. “I want to apologize for the other day. I didn’t mean to intrude on your space or anything. I just wanted to talk.”

Jon held up his hand to stop her apology. “It’s no big deal,” he replied. “I should actually be the one apologizing. I said some really harsh words, and let my anger out on you even though you weren’t the one I was angry at.”

This wasn’t only Jon knocking at her door to give her mail, it was opportunity knocking, and Christine and jumping at the chance. “Oh, who were you mad at?”

Jon eyed her suspiciously, “No one, it’s not important now.”

“Why is it not important now? Wouldn’t you rather talk about it with someone than keep it all bottled inside?” She could see the wheels turning inside Jon’s head. He was debating whether he should trust her or not. “How about we go for a little walk and you can tell me all about it,” Christine suggested, trying to get him to trust her. She figured if they weren’t inside maybe he would believe that her intentions were good, and that she wasn’t just trying to use him. To Christine’s surprise it worked. After a bit of hesitation Jon, not sounding sure of himself, said, “Sure, why not.”

“Awesome!” Running inside, Christine grabbed her snow boots and her coat and rushed back out the door. Not wanting her mother to know where she was going she slipped into her boots and coat while standing on the front step, and quietly closed and locked the door behind her. She could feel the strange looks Jon was shooting her way as he watched her wipe snow off the bottom of her socks before shoving them into her boots. Ignoring his looks, she stood up and shrugged her jacket on and zippered it up. Placing her hands into her jacket pockets she looked at Jon and asked, “Ready?”

“Sure,” he replied, still sounding unsure if he really wanted to take a walk in the snow with her. Christine knew he felt weird about this whole situation because she felt weird about it too. How did they begin a personal conversation when the last one they had was 10 years ago? It was obvious that neither of them were completely sure because nothing was said for several blocks, but Christine didn’t mind. This time she enjoyed the silence that lay between them. It was calming rather than awkward, and made her realize how much she really did miss him as a friend. This thought made her panic but she shrugged it off. Christine knew what she was after and panicking would make her lose her nerve. Pushing any nerve wrecking thought from her mind, Christine decided she would break the silence and say something. To her surprise, Jon broke the silence first.

“Can we actually not talk about the other day?” he asked. “I’m sorry, I know I agreed to go on this walk with you so we could talk, but I don’t think I can talk to you about something so personal.”

“Why not,” Christine demanded. She didn’t only bring Jon on this walk to seduce him. She was truly concerned about him a lot, even if they didn’t talk anymore.

“Face it, Christine, we haven’t spoken to one another in years and you expect me to trust you?”

“There should be no question on trust. I never broke any trust between the two of us.”

“You did when you started sleeping around with every guy in school.”

“Not every guy!” Not only was Christine shocked, but she was also slightly embarrassed. So it really wasn’t all her mother’s fault. Her promiscuity was apparently a reason why they didn’t speak any more.

Jon scoffed, “Okay fine, but the majority of the male population. The point is, once we hit high school I thought we could be friends again. By that time I didn’t listen to my dad anymore because I was old enough to make my own decisions on how to run my life. Unfortunately, you had changed so much I could tell it wouldn’t work out between us. Realizing that was the worst feeling I ever experienced. Even worse than when my mom died.” Christine didn’t know what to say. The only time she was ever upset about losing his friendship was when she was 8 and Mr. Wilson was telling her Jon couldn’t come over to play anymore; that they would never be able to see each other again. After that she never looked back because the experience was too painful to relive. She never once thought about how he might feel. “You were my best friend,” he continued, and Christine could hear the hurt in his voice. “Seeing you act the way you did,” he shook his head as if trying to erase the image of her from his mind, “hurt. It hurt so bad to know that you were not the same person and that I was.” Jon glanced over at her but Christine turned her head away from his glance. She didn’t want him to see the tears that were forming into her eyes.

“I… I didn’t know you felt like that,” Christine barely whispered, afraid if she spoke any louder she would lose it. She didn’t know why Jon’s opinion mattered so much to her. If she had known from the beginning he felt this way about what she was doing she would have changed for him. Now, not only was she afraid she couldn’t stop the track that her life was on, she was afraid that she didn’t want to stop it. She loved the attention that she received from guys. All the attention was like a drug: she loved the feeling she got from it and craved it whenever it was taken from her.

Jon shrugged, “Yeah, well, no big deal.”

“But it is a big deal,” she almost yelled, whipping around to finally face him. “We were inseparable when we were little. Just because one incident happened between us didn’t mean we couldn’t still be friends. We could’ve found a way around it, like you tried to do!” Tears started to pour down Christine’s face as she babbled on. “I’m sorry I am who I am and I’m sorry I didn’t try harder to be there for you!”

“You don’t need to apologize,” Jon rushed in, looking a little frightened by the situation. Christine knew all he wanted was for her to stop crying, but she couldn’t. The situation was frightening her too because she had never shown this much emotion to a guy. This was the first time in years that a guy truly cared about her, and she didn’t know what to think of it.

“But I do! It’s all my fault things turned out they way they did! I could’ve done something, anything, to be able to see you again, but I was too afraid! I didn’t know what would happen if I tried, and now that it’s too late. I’m so, so sor—“ Christine stopped mid sentence. Jon had his arms around her in a tight embrace. There was nothing sexual about the experience; it was something completely new to Christine. The only person who had ever hugged her was her mother, and she stopped giving her hugs when she became friends with Jack. She never received a hug from any male before, neither her father nor any previous lover. Her head was pressed firmly on his chest and she could feel almost every inch of him. Through his jacket she could hear his heart beat in a rhythmic pace. Maybe it was because it was a new experience, she wasn’t sure, but something about that hug aroused her. Without even thinking about the consequences, Christine slowly lifted her head toward his and kissed him, very lightly on the lips. Suddenly, everything stopped. Wide eyed, and looking a little ill, Jon let go of her and backed away.

“I have to head back now. I forgot I have homework to get done.” Without another word, Jon turned and ran back to the cul-de-sac, leaving Christine standing alone in the middle of the snowy, deserted street.

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