A/N: I'd like to thank TalonRider for editing this epilogue. His unparalleled excellence and tireless effort applied throughout this story has been, and always will be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

I'd also like to thank the brilliant Librent and hh5 for beta-reading this chapter. Thanks, Librent!

And finally I'd like to thank Dargon, Drewbie, Jamie de Valen and Nephylim for their contributions to this epilogue. Thanks guys!

American Differences
-By Emulated


Two Months Later

I now pronounce you, Husband and Wife.” Smiled the Vicar warmly, “You may kiss the bride.”

My cousin, Robert leaned forward towards his new wife, Suzie and shared a small kiss with her. Camera flashes went off around them, as we all stood up from the pews and applauded, with the organ starting to play within the church. They pulled apart, grinning at each other, before they began to make their way down the aisle, Suzie’s arm hooked around his.

I felt Josh nudge me slightly as he stood beside me, “How much would you pay me to step on her dress?” He said, just after they had passed our aisle.

I looked down at him, laughing, “You’re crazy.”

He shrugged, eyeing the trailing end of the dress.

We followed them outside and made our way to the front of the church, watching as they climbed into their chauffeur driven car, a cream-coloured Rolls-Royce. A few moments later and the car pulled away. Rob and Suzie waved from the windows, flashing their infectious smiles to the cameras. I smiled myself and waved back at them, seeing the love and happiness on their faces. The car made its way out of the church’s drive, and drove down the road, out of sight.

Weddings used to annoy the hell out of me. Too much time was spent standing around doing nothing. You had to get all dressed up, and usually drive for miles, like we had. And to top it off, it was currently a heterosexual-exclusive event. But this time, for that wedding, I was actually in somewhat of a more positive mood. Seeing the groom, one of my older cousins, dressed in his suit immediately reminded me of Jamie in his suit he wore those months ago at the Prom. Couple that with it being quite a nice day, weather wise, and a chance to see all of my Mum’s side of the family, it worked out pretty well.

There was of course a few problems to the whole thing. Namely being the chosen location for the wedding. While having it set in the Lake District was an excellent choice in terms of scenery, it did mean that we had to travel over two-hundred miles to get there. So that meant Jamie was two-hundred miles away. A fact I hated. Another event that almost coincided with the wedding was my results day at school. I was due to get my GCSE results four days after the wedding. Of course, we’d be at home by then, but I wasn’t particularly looking forward to going back and having that waiting for me, so I put that at the back of my mind, and concentrated on the present.

The crowd slowly began to disperse as people headed to their cars, heading back to their hotels or wherever they were staying. We waited around a while, speaking to members of my family, specifically my aunt, uncle and Craig, who was with some girl around his age.

“Who’s that pretty-looking girl with Craig?” Asked my mum.

Craig’s mum, Claire, my aunt, answered her, “Oh, that’s Ellie, Craig’s girlfriend.”

“I remember you telling us when you called last.” Mused my dad, “How long have they been together now? It must be about four months.”

“Three.” She replied, looking over at them, “But they’re happy with each other. Ellie’s a really nice girl too.”

I frowned. ‘Three months and he’s bringing his girlfriend? I’ve been with Jamie for EIGHT months yet he’s not standing here with me.’ I thought to myself, quickly getting frustrated. As I thought about it some more, watching Craig give her a small kiss, I was actually somewhat glad that Jamie wasn’t there. While it would have been great, the last thing I wanted was my family to be looking down their noses at us, least of all at Jamie, who was nothing less than a Prince to me.

Fortunately we didn’t hang around much longer as we’d be seeing them all later anyway. When planning the wedding, Rob and Suzie had hired a hall quite close to where the majority of the guests were staying, where the late afternoon/evening arrangements would be held. I plunged my hand into the stiff pocket of my trousers, retrieving my phone and checking the time, 3:37. That wasn’t so bad. The party wasn’t due to start until around five anyway, with Rob and Suzie appearing around half-past. That’d give us enough time to head back to the hotel and chill out for a while. And hopefully give my baby a quick call too!


I surfaced at the top of the pool and took in a breath, wiping the water away from my eyes as I blinked a few times. I glanced around the pool and noticed Josh swimming a few metres away. I slowly began to make my way over to him, enjoying the feel of the water against my skin. When we were first told the name of the hotel where we were staying at, we looked it up on the Internet and found it had an indoor swimming pool. Not wanting to waste the opportunity, Josh and I made sure to take our swimwear along with us in case we had the chance to use it while we were there. Luckily for us, we had the chance to have a quick dip just after we arrived back from the church, before the party.

Dad was in the pool with us as well. He’d say that he was there to have a swim, but it was really to keep an eye on Josh, who, while having only turned thirteen a few weeks back, still didn’t have much of an idea when it came to his own personal safety. I didn’t mind keeping an eye on him, but it was easier to have Dad do that job, while I swam a few lengths.

The guys and I had gone swimming a few times during the past couple of months, and we always had loads of fun. The first time we went with Jamie was a little awkward as I wasn’t sure if I’d instantly spring an erection when he stripped down. But I kept my back to him, my mind on something else while he done his thing, so I didn’t have any issues ‘arise’ through that. Saying that, there were a few times when we were in the water, where I’m sure Jamie intentionally ‘brushed’ up alongside me. Each time he done that I was instantly thankful for the baggy pair of swim shorts I was wearing. They worked wonders for hiding things.

We weren’t in the pool for long before we had to up and leave, not wanting to be late for the party. Once we were back in our room - our room being Josh’s and mine - we quickly got dressed in our party clothes and sorted out our hair in the mirror. I’d had mind cut a little since the Prom, but it was still kinda long. I flicked my head to the side and applied a little spray to keep it looking good. I stepped out of the bathroom, relinquishing the small mirror to Josh so he could do his hair, as I headed over to my phone. I picked it up and checked the screen, noting how I had no signal. Naturally I held it up to the ceiling, but still nothing, “Crap.”

“What?” Asked Josh.

I sighed, “My phone isn’t getting a signal here.”

“I know. It’s dodgy up here.”

Laughing, I nodded, “You’re not kidding.” I replied, slipping the phone into my pocket, deciding I’d try to call Jamie later. I headed over to the bathroom when there was a knock at the door. I walked over and opened it, seeing Mum and Dad standing there, all dressed up and ready.

“You look good, Matt.” Said Mum, as she stepped inside, “What about my other son?”

“He’s just finishing off his hair.” I replied.

Dad nodded, “Good, we have to go as soon as he’s done.”

“I’m done!” Called out Josh, before he appeared around the bathroom door, with water dripping down the side of his face. Mum grabbed a towel and started to wipe his forehead.

“How much water did you put on? You’re soaking.”

He fought off the towel, “You’re messing up my hair.”

I shared a look with dad, deciding to join him out in the corridor. We didn’t have to wait much longer for Josh to be ready, and his hair somewhat drier, before we headed downstairs to the reception, where we met another one of my Uncles, who was also on his way out with his wife. We spoke to them for a few minutes as we walked over to our car in the car park. One minute later we were sitting down in the car, and around ten-minutes after that, we pulled up outside the hall, ready for the evening.


I reached over to the table, picking up my can of Pepsi and taking a sip as I took a look around the hall. While it wasn’t that large a building, it still had more than enough room for everyone there, and it was very modern too. As soon as we stepped inside through the automatic doors, hearing the music being played, it was clear that it was going to be a good evening. It really reminded me of the Prom, save for the obvious of it being with my family, instead of my friends and Jamie, but it was somewhat similar.

If there was one downside to the party, it was that, aside from Craig, Josh and I really didn’t have any other cousins around our age. We had a few five-year-olds in the family, and a few more toddlers, but that was it. Had it been a wedding on my Dad’s side, things would’ve been a bit different. I had quite a few cousins on his side that were my age. Still, we made do with what we had, which was pretty much each other. It was times like those where I was eternally thankful that I didn’t have a brat for a brother.

Glancing around the room again, I caught sight of Craig across the room with Ellie, instantly reminding me of my American beauty. I reached for my phone, pulling it from my pocket and staring at the screen, finding that I finally had a signal. I looked over at Mum, who was speaking to her sister, “I’m just gonna go give Jamie a call.”

She nodded, “That’s fine.” She said, “Oh, and don’t forget to check about tomorrow. We should be back in time for you to go.”

“I won’t.” I replied, smiling at her. A few days before we left on our little trip up north, Jamie’s parents had invited me over for dinner at their place. It had actually become somewhat of a monthly thing, with me eating over his, or vice-versa. Another thing that had occurred a few times, were the sleepovers. We had the one sleepover after the Prom, and had another one about a month after. I was also due to have one over Jamie’s house, the following day, after eating over there, but Noah hadn’t known about the wedding. Even so, I quickly made it clear that NOTHING would stop me from spending the night in Jamie’s bed. So with that sorted out, I just had to check with Jamie that it was all okay, and that I was still allowed to spend the night over his.

I stood up and walked out to where the toilets were, as there was a little seating area there, with a few vending machines. Why they were needed when there was a bar available, I had no idea, but they still occupied the side of the wall, opposite a large set of windows looking out onto the distant hills.

I stood in front of the windows and dialled his number, placing the phone to my ear. As it started to ring, I quickly glanced around, checking that I was alone.

“Hey, Matt.” Came Jamie’s voice as he answered.

I smiled, “Hi, Babes.”

“How are you?” He asked.

“I’m okay, thanks. How are you? Miss me?”

I heard him sigh, “Like you have no idea.”

“I know the feeling.” I replied.

“Yeah, so how’s the wedding? Everyone looking fabulous?” He teased.

I giggled, “You bet, except for my aunt. She’s wearing this hideous dress..” I began, making Jamie laugh hysterically on the other side, “It’s true. I wouldn’t be seen dead in…” I trailed off, blushing at what I said.

Jamie laughed again, “You wouldn’t be seen dead in what? The dress? I hope not.”

“Yeah, well, I…uh…” I stammered, “Stop it!” I warned.

“Stop what?” He asked cheekily.

“Trying to…you know…”

“Make you blush like I always do?”

I felt my cheeks warming, “Yeah.”

“Is it working?”

“No.” I replied, “It’s that look you give me.”

“I give you a look?” He remarked, feigning surprise.

“You know you do. That little stare you give me.” I replied, “You always do it before-“

“Before I what?” He pressed.

I checked the hall again, “Before you…kiss me.”

He giggled, “You sound so cute when you say that.”

“I’m not trying to be-“ I lowered my voice as one of the wedding guests came out of the toilets, “Cute.”

“Maybe.” He replied, “But it’s the way you are.”

“Sure. Whatever.” I said, making him laugh again, “Hey, did you get the picture?”

“The super hot one you took in the mirror?”

I bit my bottom lip, recalling the photo I’d sent to him that morning, “Yeah, that one.”

“I got it. Thanks.”

I smiled, “Is everything still good for tomorrow night?”

“MmHmm. But are you sure you still want to come, after that long journey back?

“Of course I’d still want to come.” I lowered my voice again, “I’d never give up the chance to spend a night with you, in your bed.”

He was silent for a moment, “I like the sound of that.”

“Me too, babes.” I said, feeling cheeky, “But I might have to stop off at my house first. There’s a few...things I need to pick up.” I added, as I faced my tenting groin away from the corridor.

“Oh, I…uh…”

“You what?”

“I…went shopping yesterday.” He whispered cutely.

A smile crept onto my face, “Shopping?”

“Yes, I got some more…” He trailed off.

I flashed a toothy grin into the phone. Jamie could be sooo cute when it came to sex. And I just loved teasing him, “Hmm, I hope you remembered to pick up the extra-extra-large ones, because those large are just too tight for me, you know?”

Jamie laughed, “Oh, shut up.”

I giggled, “I’m sorry.” I sighed, “I wish I was there now.”

“Me too. But Sam’s here, and we know how loud you can be...”

I blushed instantly, “Jamie!” I warned.

He laughed again, “Don’t give what you can’t take, boy!”

I smiled, taking a seat on the window sill, “So how about the guys, how are they holding up without me?”

“Con can’t keep quiet about you, and Max is threatening to drive up there and steal you back.”

“Steal me back? Max?”

“Yep. Beth’s encouraging him to do it too.”

That had me giggling again. Ever since Jamie and I came out to Beth, by kissing in the park, she had been all over us! She wasn’t kidding when she thought two guys kissing was cute, even more so when it was Jamie and me doing the kissing. She quickly wanted to become our best friend. So much for us trying to defy the stereotype of having a very close female friend follow us everywhere! But she wasn’t really all that bad. And in the end, she still thought of us as Matt and Jamie. That meant everything.

Noticing some more people walk pass me, I decided I’d better end the call. “Hey, babes, I better go. Wouldn’t want everyone to come looking for me, wondering who’s keeping me here talking.”

He laughed, “Sure. You go and enjoy the party.”

“I’ll call you later.” I promised, “Before you go to sleep.”

“Good.” He said, as he smiled into the phone, “I love you, Matt.”

“I love you too, Babes.” I whispered into the phone, before hanging up. I stood there for a second, grinning to myself, unable to contain my excitement of seeing him tomorrow.

“So who is she?” Came Craig’s voice behind me.

I turned to him, feeling the blood drain from my face, “Who?”

“I love you too, Babes.” He grinned

I frowned, “You were spying on me?”

“I’m just pleased for you.” He smirked, leaning against the vending machines, “So come on, who is she?”

“No-one.” I replied, noticing Mum walking down the hall towards us. Good. At least I could get away.

She smiled, “So is Jamie alright with that?”

“Huh?” I asked, eyes wide.

“Jamie, is he okay with-“

“Yeah.” I replied, “He is.”

Craig laughed, but shut up when I shot him a look.

Mum nodded, “Good, we should be there early in the afternoon.” She replied, before heading to the toilet.

“What’s so funny?” I asked, looking at Craig.

“Nothing.” He said, the smirk returning to his face as he watched Mum leave before he walked over, his voice lowered, “Come on, we both know it wasn’t Jamie on the phone.”


“It was your girl, wasn’t it?” He pressed.

I looked at him. Knowing that I wasn’t planning on coming out to him anytime soon, I took the exit he gave me. I grinned at him, “Well, what do you think?”

He placed a hand on my shoulder, giving me a knowing smile, “I knew it.”

“I guess you can’t keep things a secret forever.”

He laughed, “No way, Mate.” He said, before he nudged me lightly, “Besides, you can always tell me anything. Especially when it comes to women.”

“I’ll keep that in mind.” I said.

He led me out to the hall, “So, who is it? Li?”

I rolled my eyes, “Why do you always think it’s Li?”

“She’s the only one I know.” He pointed out, nudging me again, “Who is it?”

“Her name is Beth.” I replied.

“Is she hot?”

“Yeah.” I replied, “Really hot.” And I really didn’t have to make much of that up, as it was pretty clear that Beth was one of the best looking girls in our area.

He reached out, giving me a high-five, “Nice one, Mate. Glad you finally got someone.” He said, before laughing, “And to think, my Mum and Dad started to worry about you.”

I froze, looking at him, “How do you mean?”

He shook his head, “It doesn’t matter.”

I opened my mouth to inquire further, but Ellie wondered over, catching his attention.

“Hey, Ells.” He smiled, kissing her softly, before turning to me, “You haven’t met Ellie properly yet, have you?”

I shook my head, before Craig quickly introduced us to each other.

“You should come sit with us, Matt. Get Josh to come over too.” Said Craig.

I nodded, and headed over to get Josh, finding that we’d probably have a better time there, than sitting with the Aunts and Uncles.

We ended up sitting with Craig for much of the party. Ellie was a really nice girl too, and seeing her with Craig seemed to confuse me. I mean, here was a very nice person, yet she was dating someone like Craig. It didn’t make much sense at first. But putting his homophobia aside, Craig WAS a pretty cool person. There were few people he didn’t get on with, and he was generally nice to other people. In the end, that all meant very little to me, as I was exactly the type of person who Craig despised. I had no idea why he hated gay people so much, and some of the stuff he came out with was really tasteless, but that only happened once, or twice.

There was of course the whole question of what he meant when he said that his parents ‘started to worry’ about me. I instantly started to think that they were assuming that I was gay, because I hadn’t had a girlfriend, and in fact, that made sense. I tried to bring it up with Craig again, to be sure of what they meant, but once he let rip of one of his slurs, I decided against bringing it up. The last thing I wanted was to keep him talking about gay people, so I simply let it drop.

As for the party, things seemed to go really fast once they had brought the food out. We had a nice little dessert, a few more drinks, and before we knew it, people were beginning to leave. I took this opportunity to give Jamie another phone call, telling him a goodnight and that I’d see him tomorrow. My family and I didn’t stay much longer either, and soon retreated back to our hotel where we headed to our rooms.

Josh climbed into his bed and I climbed into mine. I switched off the light and snuggled closer to the sheets. I smiled, knowing that the next time I’d be in bed, I’d be doing so in Jamie’s arms. I fell asleep with my mind on my blond beauty all those miles away.


The Following Day

Letting his tongue slip from my mouth, I pulled back, grinning, “Miss me much?”

He looked upward, “Erm…”

I kissed him again, making him laugh.

It was the following day and I was over at Jamie’s house, just after dinner. We’d spent most of the day travelling, and despite having sat in a car, I felt drained by the whole thing. But as soon as we exited the motorway and entered our town, I was up and alert, ready to see my baby.

“Of course I missed you.” He replied, hugging me close and kissing my cheek, “Don’t do that again.”

“No more me going away for three days. I promise.” I giggled.


I managed to sneak in a few more kisses, before we stuck a DVD in his Xbox and started to watch it. We didn’t get much watching done though, as barely five minutes into the film, Jamie started to sneak his hand up my thigh. I pretended not to notice, before he placed his hand squarely on my tented groin. I sighed and let my head fall back against the couch.

Jamie grinned, rubbing me gently through my trousers, before he slipped his fingertips beneath the waistband. He paused, “Do you want me to?”

Every nerve in my body was screaming a yes, but with everyone else in the house still awake, I was a little reluctant to let him continue, knowing it’d be impossible for me to stop once he’d started. I shook my head, “Later.”

He kept his hand there.

I opened my eyes and stared at him, “I’ll make it worth your while…”

He pulled back his hand and grinned, “You’d better.”

I leaned forward and kissed him, “It’s a promise.”


Going to sleep next to Jamie was an amazing experience. But waking up next to him, wrapped in his arms was completely heavenly. Nothing else came close. Well, unless we were making love, now THAT was at the top of the scale. Nothing could touch that up there. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a chance to be together that night, in that way. Sure we both ‘fooled around’ a little, okay, a lot, but we didn’t go that far. It wasn’t because we were ‘scared’ to or anything, I mean, since the day after the Prom, our first time, we’d found two separate times to be together, and it was still just as magical as the first time.

Of course, being gay, there is the added benefit that we can switch positions, unlike our straight counterparts. And that really made things interesting. Jamie making love to me that first time, but when I made love to him, it really seemed as though we were complete, you know? As though we really had reached another level to our relationship. The feelings of being inside him, and seeing his golden locks sprawled against the pillow as I stared down at him, were etched into my mind and my heart. It was in that instant where my heart all but exploded in my chest. Even thinking back still gives me the warm fuzzies.

And as I laid there, that morning in Jamie’s arms, hearing his gentle breathing, and feeling his warm breath nip at the back of my neck, it was as though I had a moment of clarity. Everything seemed to make sense. As though the jigsaw was complete. I couldn’t help but feel that things were always supposed to be that way, as if someone or something had planned out everything long ago. I didn’t, and don’t believe in fate, but at that moment, it really felt as though I’d reached a whole new mark of my existence. That a whole story had reached its end, and another one about to begin, one with Jamie Keller by my side every step of the way.

Jamie awoke a few minutes later. I gave him a few small kisses, before he had to all but run to the toilet, complaining of a full bladder. I didn’t mind, and told him to take a shower while he was down there, so I could bask him his warm bed for a while longer. It didn’t last that long, as Jamie returned, sporting his dark, slick locks and smelling completely fresh. He even opened his robe for a few seconds, letting me peek inside, before he told me to take a shower, stating that his parents were going to leave for work, dropping Sam off at one of her friends on the way.

I relented, grabbed a spare robe, and made my way down to his bathroom. After my shower, I made my way up to his room without bumping into anyone. I stepped inside to see him standing there, still in his robe.

“Lock the door.” He said, “They just left.”

I glanced at the window, “All of them?”

He nodded, “We’re alone.”

My groin twitched at that, before I turned around and locked the door. Once I was sure it was locked, I faced towards the bed to see Jamie laying there naked, with his legs bent at the knees, everything on display. He licked his lips and patted the bed next to him.

“Come on.” He beckoned.

I slipped off the robe and padded over to him, climbing onto the bed and crawling between his legs.

He reached up and cupped my face, “I missed you.” He whispered, before pulling my face to his, kissing me gently.

I pressed my hips against his, “Me too.” I murmured back, as I kissed him again, flicking my tongue against his soft lips. We kissed for a few minutes, before he rolled me over onto my back. I wrapped my arms around him, pulling him closer to me, as I snaked my tongue into his warm and wet mouth. He pulled back and I smiled up at him, before I noticed something on the ceiling above him. My body jerked suddenly. Jamie frowned and followed my gaze up onto his ceiling, looking at the dark spider that was there.

“Hehehe, you’re cute, you know that.” He said as he leaned toward me again.

I pulled back, “Can’t you get it?” I asked quickly, eyeing the arachnid cautiously.

He glanced up at it again, “It’s tiny.”

“What?! That thing is massive.” I said, moving over slightly, in case it fell on top of me. I had always hated spiders. There was just something about them that crept me out. There was no way that I could relax knowing that it was just there. Or worse, it could glide down on a web and…I shuddered at the thought of it coming closer. I got up off the bed and stood back.

Jamie watched me curiously, “You’re kidding, right?”

I shook my head, “No, please get it.”

He frowned slightly, “Do you really not like them?”

“You know I hate them.” I looked at him, “Please, Jamie.”

He stood up on the bed and looked at it, “I think there’s a shoe under my bed, pass it here.”

“What? Why?” I asked.

He frowned, “So I can get it for you.”

“I don’t want you to kill it.”


“Can’t you like, get it in a glass or something?”

“Now you want to make it your pet?”

I’m sure my expression answered his remark, I wasn’t finding this funny at all.

He raised his hands, “Ok, ok. I’ll get a glass.” He looked over to his desk and noticed an empty one sitting there. He climbed off the bed, retrieved the glass and a piece of paper before he climbed back up again. I watched as he effortlessly captured the spider and secured it in the glass, “There!” He exclaimed, stepping down onto the floor.

“Good.” I commented, as I watched from afar

Jamie placed the glass on his desk as he pulled on his trousers, “I’ll put him outside, k?”

I nodded, “Yeah, thanks.”

He smiled and left the room with the spider. I crawled back onto the bed and waited for him to return. After a minute or so, I heard his steps coming up the stairs to his room. I smiled as he stepped through the door, before he closed and locked it behind him. He looked over at me, flashing his empty hands, “No more spider. He’s outside, playing with his other spider friends. Happy?” He asked, dropping his trousers and climbing onto the bed.

I nodded, just knowing that it wasn’t in the room anymore calmed me down some, “You’re my hero.” I said.

He flexed his bicep, “Always happy to help a damsel in distress.”

I swatted him on the arm, “Bitch.”

He giggled as he laid on top of me, “I’m the bitch?” He asked, as he lowered his face.

“Uh huh.” I replied, before our lips touched.


I needed my Jamie fix. Not for a pure sexual manner, but just to be near him. It was quite fun to go through Jamie’s shopping that he’d done while I was away, and there were a few interesting things in there. Suffice it to say, the term ‘ribbed’ meant a lot more to me than it did before. In a very good way. But still, with Jamie and I having recovered after our morning together, and showered again, we were ready for the day.

As soon as I pulled on my jeans from the night before, pushing my pockets back in, I felt some paper against my fingertips. I reached in and pulled it out, finding it to be a five pound note. A smile formed on my face before I nudged Jamie.

“Here.” I said, as he took hold of it.

He looked down at the crumpled note, “What’s this for?”

I flicked my head toward the bed, “Thanks, for last night.”

He frowned for a moment, trying to figure out what I meant, before he threw the note back at me, “You bastard.”

I laughed, picking up the fiver from the floor.

“You’re evil, you know that?” He spoke, a grin on his face, “Besides, you couldn’t afford me.”

I raised my eyebrows, “You actually have a price?”

He shoved me lightly, “Shut up.”


Three days later

Name?” She asked, before looking at me closely, “Sorry, Matt.” Replied Mrs Sweeney, my English teacher who was handing out the sealed letters containing our grades.

I smiled, “No problem.” I said, as she sieved through them, finding mine.

“There you go.” She smiled, handing mine to me.

“Thanks.” I replied, taking hold of it and standing to one side as Jamie got his.

It was quite weird holding the letter. It was my entire life in education summed up on a single sheet of A4 paper. And I really had no idea of how well I’d done. I looked over at the rest of the guys and headed over to them, once Jamie got his.

“You all ready?” Asked Connor.

Max started to tear his one, “Why wait? Nothing can change now.”

Jamie started to rip at his one, “He’s right.”

I shrugged and began to open mine, with the others following suit. Once the top was taken off, I reached in and grabbed at the sheet. I looked down at the slip of paper, my eyes critically scanning the words: Two As, a few Bs, and the rest Cs. I had done very well.

“How did you do?” Asked Jamie quietly.

I nodded, flashing him a grin, “Really good.” I said, as I handed him my slip, as I took his. Wow. If I thought I had done very well, then Jamie had performed excellently. Five As, and the rest all Bs. I faced him and pulled him into a hug, “You did great, J.”

“So did you.” He whispered.

I pulled back from him, not wanting to really drag on the physical contact, having already garnered a few stares. I looked at the others, “How did you guys do?” I asked.

Fortunately, everyone had done really well. Jamie and Sarah led our group with the high grades, while the rest of us settled with a few As and a nice amount of Bs and Cs. After a while, Dean showed up with Jon, and they opened their envelopes to some nice grades too. So all in all, it wasn’t the worse event in the world, but I was immensely glad that it was over, and that I knew how I did.

Once we’d spoken to a few of our teachers, each of them congratulating us on how we did – regardless of our result, we all decided to head to the park and chill out, to give our nerves a break. As always, one of the guys managed to conjure up a football, and we were up and running about, getting our minds off the grades and onto something a little more relaxed.

We weren’t there that long, before Jamie promptly reminded me that he had to leave to go see his Aunt. That annoyed me, but seeing as I’d likely be seeing him later, and every day for the rest of the holiday, I relented and let him leave. Had Dean and Jon not been there, I might have sneaked in a kiss too, but I managed to contain myself, hoping I’d find the opportunity later.

A while after that and the girls decided to head into town, something that the other guys opted to do as well, aside from Connor and me, which made us the only two left. So we decided on heading to his house where we could hang out there.

“So how’s things with Beth?” I asked, as we made our way to his house, “You two seem really happy.”

He nodded, “We are.” He replied, smiling, “She’s really great.”

“You can say that again. Just a shame she moved.”

“Yeah, but it was probably good that she did,“ He began, “I don’t think I’d have liked her as much as I do now.”

I laughed, “That’s a different way of looking at it.” I said, before my phone vibrated in my pocket. I reached down, pulling it out, finding I had a text. I thought it was my parents first, wondering where I was, but I didn’t recognise the number. I tapped on the message, pulling it up.

Tell Jamie I’m sorry about the notes.

My eyes widened, before I read the text again.

“What’s wrong?” Asked Connor, seeing that I’d stopped walking.

I handed him the phone, letting him read it.

“Okay…now that’s…

“Yeah.” I replied, holding out my hand, “I want to check the number.”

He handed it back and I checked it. I hadn’t seen it before. I held the screen towards Connor.

Connor looked at the number, “I don’t recognise it.” He said, “Maybe you should call it.”

I shook my head, “Why would I do that? It’s not like he’d pick up if I called him.”

He shrugged, “Hide your caller ID.”

I thought for a moment, before I tapped on the screen, dialling the number. I just wanted to know who was behind it, to see who was behind everything.

“Put it on speakerphone.”

I nodded and tapped on the button, subjecting us to silence for a few seconds, before a click was heard,
“Hello and welcome to ASDA voicemail. The number you are trying to reach is curre-“ Came the female voice, before I hung up.

I sat there for a moment, and then turned to Connor, “
ASDA?” I asked, “I didn’t even know they sold phones.”

He nodded, “They sell those pre-pay sim cards.”

“Crap. So he could have used the card just that once, and then threw it away?”

“Yeah.” He replied slowly, “But at least if he starts texting you all the time, you can tell the police or something.”

I nodded, “I guess.” I said, “Damn, I wish I just knew who it was.”

“Me too. But that text seemed to indicate that it was the last message that he’d send.” Mused Connor, “Otherwise he wouldn’t be saying that he’s sorry.”

I sighed, deciding that he was right. Perhaps. Either way, just having the whole notes ‘fiasco’ rear its ugly head again instantly made me cringe.

We arrived at his house, finding that his parents were at work, and Josh’s bike up near to the door. We checked the rear garden to find Josh and Adam kicking a ball about. We greeted them before we headed upstairs and stuck on the TV. Connor gave me the remote, but I just found myself flicking through the channels for about ten-minutes, not really taking any of it in.

“Try the number again.” He suggested, after watching me for a moment, “Maybe you might be able to get through.”

“Why?” I asked, “It’s not going to work.”

“You don’t know that.” He replied, “It could be his standard phone number, and he might have had the phone off.”

I pulled out the phone and redialled the number, “Okay, but if he speaks, then-“

“Listen to see if you recognise who it is.” He began, as Adam and Josh could be heard heading up the stairs, making a noise with chocolate wrappers and cans of Coke. Connor stood up to go close his bedroom door, to block out the noise.

“Ok, it’s ringing now…” I spoke, placing it down on Connor’s desk as I activated the speakerphone, seconds before a ringtone started to go off in the hall. We looked in that direction, Josh and Adam coming into view of Connor’s open door, Adam holding his phone to his ear, “Hello?”

“Hello?” Came the voice through the phone. Adam’s voice.

Having heard his voice through my phone, Adam froze. He immediately turned to look at us, his eyes focused on the phone. His gaze shifted over to mine, trying to read the expression on my face.

“Adam?” Spoke Connor, “It was you?”

Adam didn’t say anything. His eyes nervously shifting from me to my phone, and then up to his brother. He hovered there for a second, before his phone fell from his hand as he bolted out of sight. Connor started after him, as I leapt from the sofa, following them. Running through Connor’s room, I came to the top of the stairs as Adam was nearing the door. I watched as he pulled down at Josh’s bike on the side, causing it to crash onto the floor, causing Connor to stop to avoid tripping over it.

“Adam!” Cried Connor.

By the time I reached the bottom of the stairs, Adam had slammed the front door behind him. Connor picked up the bike, shifting it aside before he reached the door, found the handle and yanked it open. He took a few strides down the path leading to his house, glancing in both directions before he came to a stop.

“ADAM!!” Called out Connor again, as I emerged from the house, looking about myself but seeing no sign of him.

Connor frantically ran back in my direction, checking the side gate to his house that led to the rear garden, finding that it was open.


I chased him around to the back of the house, not seeing Adam in sight, but given the relatively low fences, he could have jumped over either of the gardens. Connor ran around and checked over every one, before he dejectedly turned and looked at me, sharing the same expression I had on my face.

What the hell just happened?

Thank you for reading the final chapter of American Differences.

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