It all stemmed from one of those ridiculous ideas that come floating out after too many beers drunk by kids too young to legally buy them, too late at night. We were out at Kevin’s house for one of his fires. This particular one had ended abruptly when Mark showed up with Caroline draped over him like an expensive fur. James freaked, punched Mark in the face and they ended up in a ball on top of the beer pong table, fur flying. Caroline started crying, at which point Megan and I headed for another beer and when we got back the party was nearly dead.
The regulars stuck around, like we did nearly every weekend night of the summer. I fished the last of the beers out of the freezing water sloshing around at the bottom of the cooler, and took my seat next to Cole, handing him one and receiving a kiss on the cheek as I did. Cole and I had been dating for over a year, which equates to about five years of marriage in adult life. Thus, we did everything old married couples did and completely ignored the continuous remarks about the lameness of our relationship.
“Can you guys believe school starts in a week?” Megan asked from where she sat on the other side of me.
Megan was my best friend and not in the ‘get’s one corner of a ten picture collage in my #nationalbestfriendday appreciation post’ on twitter kind of way. No, Megan was my other half; the one who gave me hope, when there was no hope to be found, which was too often in this dead-end town. Most people thought Megan was as cold as her icey blue eyes, yet most people didn’t now what Megan faced at home. I did.
“I can’t believe we are going to be seniors. Where did the time go?” Clara asked from across the fire, where she sat draped on Kevin. “I hope the drama dies down a little this year.”
“AMEN!” I called out. Then drained my beer.
“I don’t even remember what half of it was about,” Clara said flipping her recently chopped blonde hair. Clara was one of those who knew how to flip it in a way that made every boy within ten miles turn their heads. It was a genetic thing. Her mom and two older sisters were experts too.
“I remember homecoming-“ I said.
“Harlan, You do NOT remember homecoming!” Megan interjected.
“Okay, I remember up until we left the dance of homecoming.” I corrected myself.
“See homecoming’s a great example, I don’t remember anything about why there was so much drama,” Clara said.
Megan and I exchange knowing looks. Clara was our third best friend, which never works. Sometimes she was my best friend, sometimes she was Megan’s best friend and sometimes we worked together to completely ignore her. We loved Clara dearly, but Clara was a lot sometimes.
“There was drama because Todd broke up with Susie on Tuesday and then took Megan to the dance and you taunted everyone by tweeting pictures of them at dinner,” I said.
Clara erupted in her signature giggles bringing smiles to everyone’s faces. “Oh yeah. That was funny though, and Susie is so dumb!”
“It was funny until Susie arrived at the dance with her little posse and we had to play body guards all night,” I added.
“It would be amazing if we had all like, written down our thoughts on that whole situation and locked them away. Then we could pull them out now. They’d be so funny to read,” Clara said.
“I would have said you were an idiot for tweeting all those pictures,” Megan said.
“That’s fine, because I would have bitched about having to spend all night guarding a relationship that wouldn’t last two weeks,” Clara said, “but look at you now.”
Megan and Todd had been together ever since that fateful homecoming dance. No one saw it coming. Todd was hot and smart and played football and came from a good home. Megan was quiet and reserved and not one to be found on the arm of a football player. Yet, that’s where she’d been ever since, and I was so thankful for it. Todd gave me a much-needed break. After six years of holding her up, it was nice to share the load a little.
“It actually would be awesome to read all of that now,” I said. “We should do it for this year.”
“YES!” Clara shouted, her blue eyes growing to match the full moon overhead.
“How would we even do it?” Megan asked.
“We could write it down and seal it in an envelope and then all of us deposit them somewhere safe,” Clara said.
Megan shook her head. “That would be such a mess.”
“You guys need to remember you’re working with Megan here. Clean and organized is essential,” Todd said. Everyone but Megan laughed.
“What about email…” I said.
“Yeah, we could make a special account that we each send to,” Clara said.
“How do we keep from logging in and reading them all before next summer?” Megan asked.
The fire fell quiet while we thought, and drank.
“You guys should make up a super hard password and then give it to me and I’ll keep it safe until next summer,” Kevin said. A cunning grin covered his face.
“I’m not giving it to you, but that isn’t too bad of an idea,” Megan said. “We could seal the password in an envelope that we all sign and then if it gets opened we’d know.”
Megan retrieved her phone and right there, all inhibitions forgotten, we created the HMC Senior Record email account. Kevin got us an envelope, we sealed away the password and we spent the rest of the night discussing our marvelous idea.
With the fire nearly out we packed up our things.
“This could either be brilliant, or a brilliant disaster,” I said.
Want to receive emails when new pieces of All the Things We Should Have Said are released? Click here and enter your info.