tagAnalJoel and Carrie Ch. 08

Joel and Carrie Ch. 08


"Hey," Carrie said, her voice coming from the computer speaker. I could see she was tired despite the poor quality of the picture. I felt my chest tightened.

"Hello beautiful!" I said with a forced smile, trying to sound upbeat. God I missed her! "How have you been?"

"Lonely," she replied.

"Me too," I sighed, no longer smiling or making the attempt to seem happier than I was. Carrie knew me too well to buy it anyway.

"How's school?" she asked.

"Okay," I answered. "You?"

"Okay," she replied. We looked at each other in silence for a few seconds. I took a deep breath and let it out.

"Well, this sucks," I said.

"You think?" she asked rhetorically. She wasn't quite smiling.

"This is even harder than talking on the phone," I said, shaking my head.

"It was your bright idea to try video conferencing."

"I just wanted to see you," I said softly, taking the sight of her in.

"We should never have agreed to this separation," she sighed.

"What choice did we have?" I asked. "It's not like our parents gave us options. Besides, your school is better for your major anyway. It was your first choice."

"That was before I met you," she replied. "Right now, I'd settle for community college if it would let us be together."

"Like I would let you do that," I smiled sadly.

"We have to do something!" Carrie cried. "It's only been a month and I'm going crazy! It was bad enough at home those last couple of months sneaking around to see each other, but this is impossible!"

"Please!" I snorted. "My father is going to flip when he sees my grades if I don't find a way of focusing soon."

"Serves him right for forcing us to be so far away from each other!" she snapped angrily.

"His reaction did surprise me," I said calmly. "Although, your mother's was just about what I expected."

"She's talking about moving," Carrie said. "She says she's still too embarrassed to face any of her friends."

"What about your father?" I asked.

"He barely talks to me," she replied sadly. "And he won't look me in the eyes when he does." We fell silent.

"Remember how bad we thought Valentine's Day was?" I asked with a shake of my head.

"Me and my bright ideas! I should never have planned such a big graduation party," Carrie shook her head.

"That's not really fair," I said. "The plan was fine. It was the party crashers that caused the problems."

"That was scary," Carrie sighed.

"I can't believe Jimmy was stupid enough to crash with two guys he met at a bar!"

"I can," she said. "Thinking things through was never Jimmy's strong suit and he was drunk on top of that. I am so sick of him!"

"I wouldn't worry about Jimmy anymore," I said, trying to calm her down. "Between the cops and his parents, he won't be bothering us again."

"You know, I still second guess myself on calling the police," she said.

"It was exactly the right thing to do," I insisted. "Those guys were bad news. It would have been real bad if the police didn't arrive when they did."

"You call what happened not bad?" she asked in disbelief. "You had to pull one of the guys off of Maria!"

"That was unpleasant," I admitted, but then couldn't stop myself from grinning and adding, "But Deana kicked him so hard between his legs afterward that I'll be amazed if he's ever able to do much in the sex department again."

"Thank God you got to him before anything really bad happened!" Carrie said, not sharing my amusement. I didn't blame her.

"How is Maria doing?" I asked.

"Okay," Carrie answered. "Truthfully, I think she was more traumatized by her parents finding out she was gay. Not that it stopped her from moving in with Deana."

"I bet they're happy," I said wistfully.

"We could always tell our parents off and move in together," Carrie joked darkly.

"If you really wanted that, I'd agree to it in a second," I said. "But the way your parents reacted, they'd disown you and that would kill you." We fell silent again.

"Well, I'm more depressed now than I was before," I said, forcing a laugh.

"Just think," Carrie sighed. "Only a month and a half to Thanksgiving."

"Yeah," I said glumly. A month and a half sounded like a lifetime. "I spoke to Robbie and Tara. They're doing well. Have you heard from anyone else?"

"Sure," Carrie said. "Jill and Tara keep in touch constantly via text and email. They're both having a blast at college. We speak on the phone about once a week."

"Did Tara say how Brian was doing?" I asked.

"Good," she replied. "She didn't out and out say it, but I think Brian's roommate spends most nights at his girlfriends, leaving them his room."

"I'm so glad that we convinced them and the others to take off just as the cops arrived. Could you imagine what Tara's father would have done if he knew they were involved?"

"I'm surprised the police let them go," Carrie said.

"They were being smart," I grinned half-heartedly. "Most of your friends have pretty affluent parents. The rumors flying afterward were bad enough. Could you imagine how it would have been if the cops decided to take everyone in?"

"Still," Carrie said with a shake of her head.

"All they really needed was Deana, Maria, me and the crashers," I insisted. "I wish you'd listened to me and left with the others."

"I couldn't leave you like that," she said stubbornly. It wasn't the first time we'd had this discussion. "Besides, it was my party. I doubt they would have let me go anyway."

"Doing anything fun this weekend?" I asked, changing the subject.

"Not really," she answered. "My roommate is trying to get me to rush a sorority with her, but I'm not really all that interested."

"Might be fun to go through the process even if you don't want to join," I offered. "I'd do it if I were you. It will at least get your out of your dorm room."

"We'll see," she said. "What about you? You doing anything interesting this weekend?"

"I'll probably spend most of it daydreaming about a certain blond haired girl," I offered.

"It better be me you're talking about buster!" she smiled. It wasn't full, but it was better than I'd hoped for.

"Always," I promised. "You're my blond goddess and you know it."

"I love you," she said softly.

"And I love you too," I said. "As long as we have that, the rest will work itself out."

"I know, but that doesn't make now any easier," she said. Her eyes were glistening. I could tell she was close to tears despite her trying to hide it. She forced a smile and added, "I've got to go. I can't miss my next class."

"We'll talk soon," I said, but she'd already disconnected. I knew it was because she was about to cry and didn't want me to see.

I sat in my room staring at the screen for a long time. My classes were already over for the day. Tomorrow was Friday. I had two classes. One was a joke. It was one of those huge lectures that half the people skipped. The other was actually my favorite class. The professor was interesting and it was one of my few classes actually in my major.

"You okay?"

I was startled to look up to see my roommate Tommy. He was a tall guy who looked like he could play middle linebacker for a football team, but he wasn't really a jock. His muscles came from being a farm boy in one of Midwest states. The truth was that despite his size he seemed pretty focused on his classes. He wanted to be a lawyer.

"Sorry, I didn't hear you come in," I said.

"Yeah, I know," he grinned. "That's why I was worried."

"Just distracted," I said.

"You video conferenced your girl, didn't you?" he asked.

"Yep," I answered. "It was good to see her." He looked at me carefully before shaking his head.

"You want a moment?" he teased.

"I want to see my girl!" I snapped, suddenly angry. I shook my head and quickly added, "Sorry."

"Don't be," he shrugged. "I understand. My girlfriend is still back home."

"How do you deal with it?" I asked.

"It's different with us," he answered. "We knew this day was coming for a long time. I think half your anger is from being forced apart. I'm guessing it makes the separation harder."

"You're probably right," I sighed, and then decided to change the subject. "Let's go out."

"I've got a test..." he began, but I cut him off.

"It's only a quiz and you're already ready for it," I interjected. "Besides, we'll only go for a drink or two. You'll be home early enough to study some more if you really want."

"You want to go to O'mally's, don't you?" he grinned. "And you need me to give you a ride."

"Well yes," I admitted. "But I'd enjoy the company as well."

"What is it about that place you like so much?" he asked.

"Well for one, it's not a meat market," I answered.

"True," he laughed. "I think when we walk in the average age drops by ten years."

"Very funny," I said, but didn't deny it.

Three hours later we were on our way back to the room. We had a few more than a couple of beers, or at least I did. I wasn't really drunk, but mostly because Tommy forced me to eat toward the end.

"I'm sorry for talking your ear off," I said, more than a little embarrassed. I pretty much poured my heart out to this guy I'd only known for a month.

"No problem," he smiled. "You needed to vent."

"What I need is to see Carrie," I sighed.

"So then, why don't you?" he asked. "If you really feel that strongly, then go for it."

"Go for it?" I asked in confusion.

"Yeah, they have these thing called planes," he teased. "They can get you to see your girl in like six hours."

"You don't think I've haven't thought about doing something like that?" I sighed.

"What's holding you back?"

"For starters they're expensive," I frowned.

"I have some money I can lend you if you need it," he offered, surprising me. "It's not a lot, but I'm willing to chip in for a good cause."

"You really are a farm boy," I said, shaking my head. "You barely know me! How could you offer to lend me money?"

"What, you're not good for it?" he asked with a smile.

"I am," I said slowly.

"So, think about it," he said.

There were a thousand reasons why it was ridiculous to blow so much money to travel across the country for a few days at best, but at the moment I couldn't focus on any of them. I desperately wanted to see Carrie.

We fell silent for the rest of the trip. It was late by the time we got to our room. I took a quick shower and went to bed. Tommy was already asleep by the time I put my head on my pillow. He liked to shower in the morning. I did too, but for some reason showers help me think.

I lay there for almost a half an hour before getting up. I put my computer on quietly and spent fifteen minutes typing. I grinned to myself when I was done and got up from my chair. I turned the room light on and shook Tommy awake.

"What?" he asked groggily.

"I'm going to visit Carrie," I said, shifting my attention to my dresser. I started pulling out clothes for a few days and stuffing them in an oversized gym bag.

"Now?" he groaned.

"Now," I answered with a grin. "Hey, it was your idea."

"And I supposed you want a ride to the airport?" he asked, sitting up and rubbing the sleep from his eyes.

"I just checked the flights going out," I answered. "If we hurry I can catch a redeye."

"I'm going to be exhausted tomorrow," he grumbled.

"Just think," I teased. "You'll have the room to yourself all weekend. You can study to your hearts content."

"Very funny," he said, standing and throwing some clothes on.

"If this works out, I'll name my first kid after you," I laughed. "Now let's go!"

"Give me a second!" he cried. "I need to open my eyes!"

We were in the car not long after that. We stopped at a donut shop and got him some coffee. Thankfully the airport was only thirty minutes away at this time of night.

"Next stop, an all night ATM," Tommy said. "How much do you need?"

"Don't bother," I said. "I have enough based on the costs I saw online, but barely. I saved all summer for spending money for college this year."

"You sure?" he asked.

"Yeah, thanks anyway," I smiled. "Of course, I may need to borrow a bit when I return, at least until I get a job."

"A job?" he asked.

"Yeah," I shrugged. "This probably won't be my only visit if everything works out. I'm going to need money."

"I thought your father didn't want you to work while at school?" he asked. "Something about focusing on your studies."

"Then he shouldn't have insisted on separating Carrie and me!" I snapped in irritation.

"One of these days you're going to have to tell me what happened to make him and Carrie's parents want to split you two apart so badly," he said.

"You don't want to know," I said cryptically. Tommy frowned at me, but then shrugged and let it go.

I could just picture his reaction to the news that the cops arrested us for instigating an orgy. Damn Jimmy! If he'd just shut up this could have all blown over, but he kept blabbing about seeing everyone naked. Thank God Carrie's father got the charges dropped! Of course, that didn't stop the news from spreading all through town.

"You know," I said to Tommy as we left and made our way to his car. "Carrie and I agreed we wouldn't visit each other. It just didn't make sense to spend all that money for a couple of days and chancing pissing off our parents if they found out."

"And yet here you are going to the airport," he smiled as he unlocked the doors to his car. We got in quickly.

"I can't help it," I sighed. "I want to see her. I need to see her."

"Think she'll be mad that you decided to visit after you agreed not to?"

"No," I answered, but then grinned and added, "But I'm blaming you just in case." He looked at me and laughed.

The trip to the airport was uneventful. I thanked Tommy when we arrived as I jumped out of the car. He shook his head, smiled and waved before driving off. That's when the problems started.

They couldn't get me on the flight I wanted because it was cancelled and the one they could get me on was a lot more money than the price I saw online. In fact, it was more money than I had. I cursed myself for not taking Tommy up on his offer.

I was finally able to get a more reasonably flight at one of the other airlines. The only problem was that it wasn't direct and didn't leave for a while. Of course, when we finally did get off the ground, I couldn't sleep. The connection wound up being a couple of hours late getting off the tarmac as well.

In the end, I finally landed at 3:00pm Friday, totally exhausted, but relieved to finally be done with airports. Of course, there was the trip back, but I refused to think about it now. I grinned to myself. I was going to see Carrie soon!

I took a bus from the airport to her school. There went a few more hours. It took me a while to find her dorm once I arrived and of course she wasn't in her room. It was diner time so I figured she was out eating.

I found the lounge at the end of her hall and settled in front of a television. I don't remember what was on because I fell asleep before I really focused on it. It had been a long night and day.

"Hey bud!"

I woke up with a start. There was a group of guys standing not quite over me. I closed my eyes and groaned. The sleep seemed to make me feel more tired then before. My eyelids felt heavy. It was an effort to even open them.

"Wake up!" the same voice said, sounding a bit annoyed. It was quickly followed by someone shaking my shoulders.

"Hello," I mumbled as I opened my eyes and rubbed the sleep from them.

"You're not from this dorm," a brown haired guy said with the same voice I'd heard already. "In fact, no one recognizes you as a student at all. What are you doing sleeping here?"

"Sorry," I said, standing slowly and stretching. There were actually quite a few people in the room looking at me, some of them nervously. I couldn't help it, I laughed.

"What's so funny?" the guy asked.

"Do I really look that bad?" I asked in reply. "You all look like your ready to call the police on some vagrant who wondered on campus."

"Maybe not that bad," the guy replied, smiling slowly.

"Actually, with a little sleep and a shower," a girl added. "You'd probably be okay."

"Cute even," another girl put in. It was followed by some laughter from some of the other coeds present.

"Thanks," I said, blushing slightly.

The first girl was very attractive. In fact, she was beautiful. She had the look of a girl who knew what she did to guys, but didn't let it get to her head all that much. The second girl wasn't nearly as beautiful, but she was attractive in her way and had a sexy smile.

"Don't mind Candice," the guy said, referring to the hot one. "She's the dorm slut."

"You wish!" she laughed.

"Please, some of the guys back home still swear she's going to be a nun one day," the second girl said.

"Summer, that's not true!" Candice cried in embarrassment.

"Ah, so now the truth comes out," the guy laughed.

"This is the last time I volunteer to baby sit one of Andie's friends from back home," Candice said, giving the other girl a nasty look.

"And the fact that I'm your little sister had nothing to do with it?" Summer asked with a laugh.

I blinked and looked between the two. They looked nothing alike. Candice was tall, blond and light skinned. Her features were fine and delicate, pretty in a European way. Summer was shorter, though not really short. Her skin was reddish and her hair black. She had strong features that went well with her wide shoulders.

"Step sisters," Candice said, seeing my confusion. "Although our parents got married so long ago that little Summer was still in diapers."

"Ha ha," Summer grumbled. "Very funny."

"I'm Kip," the guy said, ignoring the girls bickering and sticking out his hand. I shook it.

"I'm Joel," I offered. "I'm on a bit of a road trip to visit my girl."

"Joel?" Candice frowned. "Are you Carrie's Joel?" I smiled. I liked the sound of it.

"Yes," I replied. "I thought I'd surprise her with a visit."

"That's some road trip!" Kip said, sounding amazed. "Don't you go to school on the other coast."

"I wanted to see her," I shrugged.

"I can understand that," he grinned.

"Carrie?" Summer asked.

"You remember her," her sister said. "The incredible looking blond..."

"She's dating you?" the red skinned girl asked in surprise.

"Summer!" Candice cried.

"Shocking, isn't it?" I laughed.

"I'd say amazing," Summer grinned.

"Well, even you said you thought I'd be cute if I cleaned up," I said.

"Maybe," she replied.

"Summer, stop flirting with Carrie's boyfriend," Candice said with a shake of her head. "First, it's pointless. No one dating Carrie is going to dump her for you."

"Ouch!" I laughed. "I'm starting to see the family resemblance."

"What? Am I wrong?" Candice asked. I shook my head and she returned her attention to her sister. "And second, you'll be gone on a couple of days. This is my school and Carrie is a friend."

"Oh relax!" Summer cried. "It was just some harmless flirting."

"You forget little sister," Candice said. "I know you. Your innocent flirting sometimes turns into a bit more than that."

"Really?" Kip asked with a grin.

"Don't even think about it," Candice said to him. She might have been defending her sister, but it seemed like there was something more to it.

"Um, I hate to break this up because it's certainly entertaining, but where is Carrie?" I asked.

"She's going to be so happy to see you," Candice said, ignoring her sister for the moment. "You have no idea how much she misses you."

"If it's half as much as I miss her, then I think I do," I said.

"How sweet," Summer smile.

"I think I'm going to be sick," Kip grinned. I shook my head, but smiled. The rest of the crowd started to dissipate.

"Carrie?" I asked.

"It seems that someone convinced her to go to a sorority rush party," Candice grinned.

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