That summer flew by with Cy. They established a routine to work the market place or other tourist spots every few days and the money just rolled in. They divided the money equally and sold the credit cards to local low lifes. When school started for her, they slowed down, but didn't stop. It was hard for her to continue school with Cy out there every day, but he insisted. What had happened between them kept happening with more intensity, but Cy refused to call it anything more than friends. He was telling himself that she was his little sister (in a backwoods Kentucky kind of way), but kept enjoying the perks. That was until December and the Winter Social came along.

A week before the Winter Social, Norah met Cy at the trails. He gave her a quick kiss on the cheek before the started the walk into town.

"Hey, Cy? You know Saturday is the day of the Social?"Norah asked casually.

"Yeah, I know," He replied.

"Oh. Well, I know you're older and everything, but it's kind of important to me," Norah glanced up at him.

"Come on, Norah. I'm way too old for that crap. And it's not that big of a deal," he sighed. He grabbed for her hand, but it was too late as she pulled away.

"Not a big deal? Did you get to go to yours? Yes! You went with Stacie Flamaggio," she fumed. "I'm just asking to go to mine".

"Well, I'm not the boss of you, Norah. You can do whatever you want to do. I'm not even your boyfriend".

Norah stared at him in shock. She couldn't believe what she was hearing. After everything they had been through this summer, he was telling her that she was nothing to him. Her whole life she had been waiting for the day that he would tell her that he was head over heels in love with her and here he was telling her that she was nothing. She could feel her heart shattering, ripping her from the inside out.

"You're right, Cy. You're not the boss of me and you're not my boyfriend. You're too chickenshit to be that," Norah turned her back to him and started the long walk home.

Cy watched her go and realized she was right. He was chickenshit. He had been using her all summer for a good time and letting her get her hopes up when he didn't know what he was doing besides getting his jollys off. Yes, he was chickenshit.

Cy watched her go and felt a piece of his heart go with her.

One week later, the day of the Winter Social had arrived. Norah was eagerly waiting for her date to arrive. Finally, a black Mustang pulled in front of her home and a burly teenage boy unfolded himself out to saunter towards the door. Cy watched from the shadows of his porch, frustration building , as Dominic Giuliani rang Norah's bell. As Cy watched them take off in the Mustang, he felt a jealous twinge start to stir in his stomach.

Curled up on the porch, a few hours later, Cy awoke to loud talking in the street. He quickly jumped to his feet when he saw the source of the noise coming from a black Mustang. Cy was running before Norah could finish screaming, "Dominic, no!".

Ripping open the passenger's side door, Cy grabbed Norah out by her arm, nearly dragging Dominic out as well.

"Are you alright? Are you alright? What did he do?" Cy yelled, staring at Norah.

"I- I think so. He was trying to k- kiss me, I don't know, it was happening so fast," Norah stammered, tears streaming down her face. Cy released her and ran to the other side of the car and started banging on the window and pulling on the door. Dominic threw the car into drive and quickly took off. Cy ran back to Norah and wrapped his arms around her, burying his face into her hair. Norah collapsed into his warmth.

"I'm so sorry, Norah. I'll never leave you again. This is all my fault," Cy whispered, stroking her face and hair. Norah cried into his shoulder, her arms wrapped tightly around him.

"Please don't Cy. I'm sorry. I just did it to make you jealous,"she sobbed, looking up at him with tear filled eyes. He kissed her tear stained cheeks and brushed her tears away.

"Shh, Norah. It's okay. Never again. You're mine. My girlfriend, my whatever. I don't care. You're mine," he whispered. He gently grasped her face and brushed his lips across hers. She leaned further into him, planting her lips firmly against his. Her lips slightly parted and his tongue was there, quickly darting in to meet hers. Finally, he pulled away and took her hand. He led her across the street to his house, where he sneaked her upstairs to his bedroom.

She turned from the window with a smile, a tear silently slipping down her face. She brushed it away before glancing at the door. The guards were whispering between themselves on the other side, not paying any attention to her. She crossed to the tray on the wooden slab of a table and frowned in disgust. A green gravy had congealed over what had once been some sort of meat and heel of bread. Tearing away the gravy laden end, she nibbled on what remained of the bread and sat on the end of the bed where he slept.

As she stroked his back, she wondered where his father was? Would he make it back in time? Would he be able to save them?