[/>chapter four<\]
Taylor + Lori = Love
Taylor + Lori = Love
Late August 1996
“Omigod, Brook! You’ll never guess who called me!” Lori explained to me over the phone the morning after I went to the water park with the Hansons. My mind blanked and I got a sick horrible feeling in my stomach.

“Who?” I asked.

“Taylor! He asked me to go see a movie with him tonight! Guess all of that flirting actually paid off, eh?” My mind froze. What?! Taylor asked Lori out?! This had to be some kind of joke.

“Wow! That’s so cool! But Lori, you have a boyfriend right now,” I reminded her. Her and Jake had just started going out last week and only after she had convinced herself that she had no earthly chance with Taylor.

“No I don’t. I broke up with Jake last night after Taylor and I got off the phone,” Lori explained. My mind just couldn’t process this whole thing at all. She seemed so happy about it, I didn’t have the heart to tell her that just yesterday Taylor told me he liked me, held my hand and was trying to hook up with me.

When Lori and I got off the phone, I ran to the bathroom. I was soon looking at the bowl of the toilet and the new contents in it. My stomach wasn’t able to handle everything that I had just learned. But why was it upsetting me so much? I couldn’t figure it out.

After I felt normal again, I built up enough courage to call Taylor and ask him what was going on.

“What are you doing?” I asked Taylor.

“Not much, just playing a video game with Zac,” Taylor responded.

“That’s not what I mean,” I said, bitterly. “What are you doing with Lori?”

It took Taylor a few seconds before he responded. “I’m going out with her tonight.”

“Yeah, I know. But why?”

“Because you told me that you weren’t interested in me.” Taylor said simply.

“What?! So now you’re going out with someone you don’t like?” I asked. “That doesn’t make any sense.”

“You don’t know how I feel about Lori,” Taylor told me.

“Yes I do! You told me that you didn’t like how she flirts with you all the time! And I can see it in your eyes when she’s around!!”

“Why are you making such a big deal out of this? If you’re not interested, then why is this bothering you so much?”

It took me a few seconds now to respond, and the truth was, I couldn’t think of a good enough answer go give him. “We’re not talking about me right now; we’re talking about you and Lori.”

“I don’t want to talk to you about this,” Taylor said curtly, which made my temper blast through the roof.

“Then I don’t want to talk you about anything ever again!!” And with that, I hung up on him.

I soon had to put up with hearing Lori gush on and on about how sweet Taylor was. I truthfully didn’t want to hear about it, however, she never found out about my secret hatred towards them. It wasn’t that I hated them, I just couldn’t stand the fact that Taylor and Lori were a couple. He didn’t like her! He always used to make fun of her!! I finally gave up and just stopped hanging out with them. The last time I was with them was on New Years Eve.

The party was at Lori’s house. All of my friends were there, including Isaac and Zac. I didn’t even really consider Taylor as a friend of mine anymore because we didn’t talk anymore. Not after the fight we had on the phone. That was honestly the last time we talked to each other.


“Before I forget ... Lori wanted me to tell you something,” I said. His expression changed at the mention of her name. It looked like he was lost in his own little world for a few seconds. Then he focused his attention back to me. Before I had a chance to continue, I felt his lips on mine. I honestly didn’t even see it coming! Shocked, but mostly in disbelief, I pushed him away.

“I’m sorry,” he said immediately, “but I couldn’t help myself. You looked so sexy just then and I couldn’t help myself.” Then he smiled. I couldn’t do anything but smile back in response.

“You just surprised me,” I said, touching my fingertips to my lips where his had been a few seconds ago. Then I looked back at him.

“I like to do things that people don’t expect,” he said. Yeah, I know, I thought. “So, what were you saying before I interrupted you?” It felt like my head was spinning. Was he absolutely insane?

“She, Lori, wanted me to tell you that she misses you,” I said. Oh my! If she would happen to find out what just happened, she would kill me!!

“Ah, well, that’s nice,” Taylor responded. “Let’s go get your bags now, okay?”


1997 March
My phone rang late one night. I knew it had to be Lori. She’s the only person that calls this late at night. Her family recently moved to Oklahoma City, so we tried to talk more often to keep our friendship strong. I picked up the phone and I could immediately detect that something was wrong.


“Brook!” Lori sobbed. “I can’t believe it!”

“What hun? What’s wrong?” I asked her. Something horrible must’ve happened.

“Taylor ... he, he, we, we’re not...” she choked on her words.

“You guys broke up?” I guessed.

“Yeah,” she said, calming down a little bit. Her actual crying stopped, but she was still on the teary side of things.


“He said it was because their first single would be released soon and with all of the promotional touring they’ll be doing that it would be too difficult to have a girlfriend,” she said with disgust in her voice. Didn’t she understand that he was right?

“Oh, wow,” I said, then thought carefully about how to proceed with my next words. “But I can see where he’s coming from.”

“Well, yeah, it makes perfect sense, but Brook! I love him!” she whined. Ha, doubtful, I thought. She was still 15 and he had just turned 14. I was 14 now, too.

“You’re still going to be friends, though, right?” I asked. She sighed.

“Yeah, but it won’t be the same! We were together for 7 ½ months! If he was really serious about the whole relationship, then you would think that he’d at least want to TRY!!” Lori complained. She’s completely right. IF he was serious ... “if” is the main in that sentence. I knew from the beginning that Taylor wasn’t really serious about it.

“If you don’t mind me asking, how far did you two go?”

“I already told you details ... only kissing. He refused to go anywhere else. And the kisses were nothing spectacular. There’d only be some tongue action if I would engage it first,” she explained to me. Now, after she told me this, I was sure that Taylor never really liked her. Then I had to ask myself, why did he ask her out and spend nearly 8 months with her? It didn’t make any sense to me.

“Well, you guys will probably end up getting back together when the promotional stuff is over,” I said as cheerfully as I could.

“Yeah, maybe,” she said dully.


“You don’t exactly sound thrilled,” I commented. He shrugged his shoulders.

“I guess you can say that I never really had a thing for her. She was too ... conceited and full of herself,” he said.

“Why do you say that?” I asked.

“What? That I never liked her or that she was conceited?”


“Well, for one thing, she thought she could get any guy she wanted by smiling sweetly and batting her eyelashes,” Taylor said.

“You didn’t exactly help her out there,” I joked. He just gave me a “look.” Then my bags tumbled out onto the conveyor belt. “Those are mine.” He reached down and got them for me. I watched him closely and I could see the muscles in his back moving and tightening as he picked up my bags. I carried the suitcase and he carried the others.

“Yeah, well, I did have my reasons for asking her out,” Taylor told me. “Okay, so why didn’t you like her?”

“I just didn’t, okay? Geeze! What are you doing? Writing a magazine article or something?!”

“No! I’m just curious to see why we threw away a perfectly good friendship, that’s all,” I explained. “Plus, if you didn’t like Lori in the first place, then why did you go out with her, twice?”

“Fine, do you really want to know the whole story?” he asked harshly.

<-- Chapter 3
Chapter 5 -->