Liberation (11 of 11)
He talked afterward about how he’d never felt this way
about anyone, how he could see himself falling for me and
changing his ways. I didn’t know how to reply, so I laid my
head on his bare chest. Wasn’t that what every girl my age is dying to hear froma boy? But now that it was said, I felt a hint of disgust rising in my chest. He was a grown man. Why would he fall for me? How could it ever work? I wouldn’t be done with high school for two years; our relationship wouldn’t be legal for three. My parents would never go for it. And what was wrong with him—he was good looking, clearly knew what to say to girls—why didn’t he have someone his own age? Maybe he was just playing me now, but his act was a little too good, it freaked me out. When we’d first met, I thought of him as a fun fling, the unattainable, older man. The perfect revenge on Trav, no strings attached. Now that I’d seen this side of Jon, with the neediness or Oscar-worthy acting, I knew I didn’t want to stick around to see where it would go.
After he fell asleep, I slipped silently out of the bed. In the dark, I quickly threw on a sweatshirt and shorts and shoved the rest of my clothes into my backpack. I snuck downstairs, deciding not to leave a note. I knew he didn’t have my number. Steve’s room was closest to the door; I shook his shoulder to wake him. As he drove me home in merciful silence, I rested my forehead on the cold glass of the old truck’s window. The moon peered over the pine trees, illuminating the little house for one last moment before we turned onto the road.