There he was, Jeremy Paris. He was smiling ever so broadly, probably because my mother was standing so close to him. But I had to wonder to myself WHY she was standing next to him wearing a wedding gown. He said that he was her friend, but she never mentioned him before.

“Zac, give me that.” I asked, and he handed me the photo album. I took the photo out and examined it as closely as I could. I turned it over in my hands and looked at the back of it. I literally fell over. June 13th was the date on it. My mom always told me that June 13th was the day that she and my father were married. Could this be? Jeremy Paris is my father?

I considered all options in my head. How could he be my father? I always imagined meeting my father one day, and I would feel this special bond with him and I would know that he was my father, but when I met Jeremy, I didn’t feel anything special. And even if he IS my father, then why is he coming around NOW? Why wasn’t he there at any of my birthday’s? Where was he when my mother was sick? Why did he wait all this time, all those years to finally come around? I decided then that if it was true, if Jeremy was my father, then I could try my hardest to be nice to him and *try* to have a normal ‘friendship’ with him. I wasn’t going to say anything about him being my father, I would wait for him to say something to me.

“Ang, are you okay?” Zac asked me. I hadn’t realized that I was crying. Tears slipped from my cheeks and landed on the old photograph. I nodded, then wiped my eyes. “Is that your dad?”

I nodded. “Well, at least I think he is. And you know what?”

“Yeah, I already saw him today.” Zac replied, his eyes looking into mine. What would I do without him? I hugged him just because I needed somebody to hug. Even if the dog was there, I would’ve hugged him. I didn’t care. Suddenly, I didn’t care about the past few weeks and how everything was “weird” between us. I needed his friendship and his love more than anything right now and I couldn’t wait to get started.

* * * * *

Zac’s birthday came around and I finished making his present, thank goodness. I just made the finishing touches on it before I was called upstairs for breakfast. As soon as I walked into the kitchen, carrying his package, I saw him standing next to the kitchen table, hugging his mom, who had just given him a birthday card. He was smiling and when he saw me, it looked like he blushed a little because I caught him in a mother-son ‘moment’.

He looked at me with incredible eyes. He saw the package and the truth was, all it was was a scrapbook of everything that I have kept. It had all kinds of stuff in it that I collected and bought over the past 2 years, and from our childhood together. It wasn’t much to give him, but I thought that he would like it.

After breakfast was over, I asked Zac to meet me in the treehouse. I carried the wrapped photo album under my arm and climbed my way up the ladder. He was already there. I smiled when I saw him, my best friend. If it wasn’t for him, who knows where I would be right now...

“Happy Birthday.” I said, handing him my present.

“Ang, I told you that I didn’t want anything.”

“Whatever...I know what you told me, but, you know. Open it.”

I sat and watched him as he tore off the wrapping paper. He looked very curious when he saw a photo album. He flipped open the cover and peered intently at the pages that laid inside of it. The smile on his face was content and he never looked happier. I moved closer to him so I could see the pages, too. There was articles from the newspaper, different magazines like Entertainment Weekly, People, Spin, there was pictures from a few teeny-bopper magazines, too. I had to admit, I did buy a few just so I could see him...I missed him when they were on tour.

“This is so nice, Ang, thank you so much.” He said, then he leaned closer to me and our lips touched. Just a brief kiss to the lips was all that I offered. I know that I wanted more, I wanted to kiss so deeply and passionately, but this time I wanted to take things nice and slow and I didn’t want to rush anything.

“You’re welcome.” And with that, a crash of thunder and a bolt of lightning ripped through the air. I jumped, it had scared me. Within seconds, rain began pouring down. “We better get inside.”

I climbed down the treehouse as fast as I could. I was already soaked and I wasn’t even down the ladder yet. The rain came down harder and harder with each second and my gripping on the ladder slipped. I tried to catch my balance, I yelled for Zac to help me.

“ANGIE!!” I heard his voice scream. Then I saw nothing but darkness and the last thing I heard was a loud clap of thunder.

Chapter 14:
Chapter 16: n/a