A/N: Okay guys, I know it's been ages, but I've had a lot of stuff going on, and my life's been going from hectic to snail-speed unexpectedly. I've also had lots of bouts of writer's block. Anyways, thanks for the reviews, and thank you to Bleed Into Night for Chapter 29's title. It's much appreciated. Now onward!

Chapter Thirty-The Talk

"Skye, honey, we need to talk…"

Mr. Kelton was going to hate me.

I looked at my mom for a moment. "You're seriously choosing now to have this talk?" I asked her incredulously, giving the clock on the microwave a pointed look. "We have less than five minutes to leave before we're late…"

"I'm sorry Skye, but it's the end of the year, and I'm sure you'll be fine. We need to talk, and now is as good a time as any," she said, though she didn't look at all apologetic. I sighed and turned to Jordon, pulling out my keys.

"Go ahead and go. This might take a while," I told him with a flat look, then turned to pull down a couple coffee cups. I wasn't really in the mood to have this conversation caffeine deprived.

"Actually," she interrupted, "I'd like to talk to both of you, if that's all right…"

"No, not really. Jordon's already missed enough school because of his bitch mother finding out about us." She looked from me to Jordon with a confused look. "She went ape-shit because she found out her oldest son was gay, and she found out in a not-so kid friendly way. Take you're reaction, multiply it by three, and add a raging lunatic with anger problems to the mix. You do the math."

"So why was he missing school?" she asked me with a blank stare. Previously I'd thought of her as at least mildly intelligent.

"Because school means seeing Skye," Jordon cut in. He was looking at me, not her, eyes full of concern. I guess I probably didn't look very calm. I didn't feel very calm either.


"Yes, oh," I sneered. Jordon's hand found mine, prying it away from the yellow coffee cup I had a death grip on and his thumb started rubbing circles over the back, calming my frayed nerves a little. He was still looking at me, completely unconcerned with the fact that my mom was sitting there looking entirely uncomfortable. I sighed, because the situation was weird and my mom was crazy and Jordon knew how to defeat my unease and I was almost certain that at some point it was going to be impossible not to fall in love with him. I looked down at him with a small smile, and pulled him with me to make some toast. "Fine," I said as I let go of Jordon's hand to open the cabinet and pull down the bread.

We were all silent as I popped the slices into the toaster. The air around us was stale in a metaphorical way, and I had no intention of trying to clear that away. It was my mom's issue; she was going to have to start this conversation.

"Butter and Jam?" Jordon asked, stepping over to the fridge. I gave him a small nod, not really caring either way. I wasn't really hungry, just keeping my hands busy. I ripped two paper towels from the roll and opened the drawer below the coffee pot for a butter knife and a spoon. Jordon set a jar of strawberry jam and a tub of margarine on the counter next to me, and I gave him an analyzing look. He was completely calm. I suppose it was the fact that it wasn't his mom we were facing, and that his dad had accepted us. My mind wasn't so at ease.

"Call Dave and tell him we're going to be late for school. If we don't let him know, two days in a row, he might get mad. And that way, your mom can't be too mad, because you let your dad know," I told him, pulling out my cell phone and handing it to him. He rolled his eyes at me, but nodded and took the phone.

"I'll be back in a minute," he said, disappearing into the living room to make the call.

I buttered my toast after popping Jordon's into the toaster, then slathered on the jam, probably putting way too much on it. I could feel eyes on me, the silence heavy and foreboding. I think she was waiting for me to say something, but as I had no intention of breaking the silence, she was just going to wait a long time. Jordon came back in just as his toast popped up. I buttered and jammed it, handed it to him. Then, I grabbed my coffee and my toast, pulled out a chair at the kitchen table, and sat down. I sipped my coffee, my eyes locked on my mother across the table, not even glancing at Jordon as he sat down next to me. I was waiting for her to say something, and I was being obvious about it.

I could hear Jordon munching away at his toast for a while, but I still didn't break my stare. I think I was creeping her out, because she looked a little perturbed and glanced away. Jordon stopped eating and gave a huff that sounded irritated.

"Since nobody else wants to buck-up and start this conversation, I will." He turned to me, and I finally looked at him. Yep. He was irritated. "Skye, you're angry, Karla, you're upset. Let's start with that," he said in a mockingly airy voice.

"And what about you?" I couldn't help but ask.

He gave me a cheeky look. "Who me? I'm just sexy and unaffected."

I snorted and shook my head, managing a smirk. "You're a cheeky bastard is what you are."

"Anyways!" he continued, turning to my mom. "Since you've called this meeting, I think you should start."

She looked at me again and I think I saw remorse in her eyes. She looked a little lost, like she didn't know how to say what she needed to. "I-" she started, then stopped, and started again, her voice gaining confidence. "I want to say that I'm sorry, to both of you. I reacted badly, and Skye, I'm sorry I haven't talked to you the last couple days. I needed time to think."

I nodded at her. "Before you say anything else," I said levelly, "Dad would've been fine with it."

She gave me a confused look and cocked her head to the side a little bit. She was about to say something, but I interrupted her.

"When I was in eighth grade, there was this kid. Thomas. He used to get picked on because he was this small, kinda girly looking kid, with big eyes, big eyelashes, and big self esteem issues. He also stared a lot, but he was usually staring at boys, so he got called a fag. I didn't really care. It didn't bother me, but my friends acted like it should, like him being gay was some personal insult or something. I talked to dad about it, and you know what he said?" She gave me a slightly blank look and shook her head. "He told me that it wasn't right for anyone to treat anyone like that. That one of his best friends was gay, and it'd never been an issue, but some people were just cut a little differently, and that being different was nothing to be afraid of. He told me he would've been upset if I'd joined in bullying this boy, and if I thought it was wrong, I should stand up for him. The next school day, I did. Granted that was the first time I ever got sent home for a fight, and the kid hated me after that because it got him teased about having a boyfriend who stuck up for him...but that's not the point."

She stared at me for minute before her face crumpled, and her eyes welled up with tears. She covered her face with her hands and let out a little sob.

"I'm sorry," she managed to force out. "I-I never should've said that about your father! He would've loved you no matter what." It was all she could push out before she dissolved into nothing but sobs.

I stood and walked around the table to her. I hesitated a moment before I wrapped my arms around her and said into her hair, "and he never would've blamed you for any of this. You know that. Nothing you or anyone could've done would've changed things."

I glanced over at Jordon as I said it, and we stared each other in the eye for a long moment. It took me a moment to realize it, but I was smiling.

Jordon spent about three nights home that week, as I did my best to make sure he had to face his mother as little as possible. He spent every night I worked at the shop with me and then went home with me after. It was nice. However, the dragon-lady-she-devil made it her biggest goal to make my life hell. She stopped me in the halls, yelled at me for coming in late, when I wasn't, and tried her very best to find something against me. That Monday, I was called into Mr. Gunly's office, a novel experience for me.

"Mr. James! Please have a seat," he said when I stepped into his open doorway. I looked at him for a moment. He was one of those men who looked like they used to be completely linebacker buff, but has gone soft with good food and age.

"What's this about, Mr. Gunly?" I asked as soon as I was seated on one of the chairs across from his desk, my left ankle resting comfortably on my right knee.

"Well, it's come to my attention that you've been having some undeserved trouble with my colleague, Mrs. Janson," he said with a sigh. "Ms. Andrews has told me that in the last week, she's seen you scolded six times, all for things you apparently didn't do. Care to explain?"

I looked at him for a minute. "Because she's a bigot, and she doesn't want me around her son." I tried not to sound too bitter, because I wasn't really in the mood to be spilling all my problems to anyone, let alone this back-woods good ol' boy as I'm sure he was, mostly because my problems weren't one's he could really comprehend, much less have any sympathy for.

"A bigot, huh? That's quite a statement. Why wouldn't she want you hanging around Jordon?" He cocked his head to the right and gave me this look, like he was trying to be the understanding adult, but I could tell that he was really just doing his duty, appeasing the secretary, and forestalling possible problems with parents.

I sighed, because I really did want her off my back. "That's not something I want going around the school. This isn't exactly the most liberal area," I finally said. I could have lied, but at that moment I didn't really care to.

"This meeting is completely confidential, Mr. James," he said, and I found myself believing him. He looked like he was trying to work out what I meant, but not really coming up with any answers.

I sighed loudly. "I'm gay, Mr. Gunly." His eyes just sort of stared for a minute, and his mouth hung open for about half a second.

"...Oh," he said awkwardly. I really think he should've expected that, mostly because I'd given him enough hints. "Well Mr. James, I think this is something you should be talking about to the counselor. Have you been to see her?"

I rolled my eyes. "I really wish you'd stop calling me that Mr. Gunly. My name's Skye. And, I don't want to talk to the counselor, now or ever. I'm not conflicted on the issue, I don't need advice, and I don't see being gay as some kind of moral disease, so please don't act like that's what it is. I just want Mrs. Janson off my back, because this whole discrimination thing is getting really old. Don't get me wrong, I'm used to it on account of my looks, but I really don't appreciate it. Jordon's almost an adult, and while every parent probably would love to, none have the capacity to tell their almost grown kid who they can and cannot hang out with, especially while at school."

He stared at me for a long time before he said anything. "I'm going to have to agree with you, Mr. Ja-Skye. If it were any other parent, the school would stay out of it completely. Unfortunately, Mrs. Janson is a bit of a conflict of interest. I have to wonder though, how did she find out that you were...?"

I resisted the urge to roll my eyes. I had hoped not to be faced with that question, even when it was unfinished. I didn't hold back a sigh though. I was going to have to lie on this one, mostly because I wasn't going to tell anyone about us without Jordon's permission. "She...overheard a conversation between Jordon and I."

He stared at me for a while, then nodded his head. "I'll talk to her. I can't make her like you but I can try to get her off your back."

"I don't need her to like me...hell I don't even want her to like me. I just want her to stop making me late to class and trying to give me detention for things I didn't do."

He gave me a wry smile. "Fair enough. Now, Ms. Andrews said she hasn't talked to you about ordering your graduation stuff."

"Everybody's gonna love today, gonna love today, gonna love today! Everybody's gonna love today! Any way you want to! Any way you've got to! Love, love me! Love, love me!"

I decided that I was going to shoot Danny in the face next time I saw him, (which was going to be remarkably soon, what with graduation in just a few weeks). He somehow managed to get Jordon hooked on Mika, which I wouldn't care too much about if he hadn't decided to bellow it out while we were in my car on the way to the shop.

"I'm going to shoot Danny!" I told him when he went back to humming wordlessly. He was still being incredibly obnoxious, but at least I wasn't going to have that dumb-ass song stuck in my head. Well, maybe I was, but at least I didn't have to listen to the words anymore. Once, when Danny figured out exactly how much I hated Mika, he'd gotten Jack to conspire with him, getting me drunk enough to karaoke with Danny to a few Mika songs...I'd had them stuck in my head for weeks.

"No you're not," Jordon said with a grin that that made the whole situation a little less irritating.

"I'm going to shoot him, then I'm going to shoot Mika, just so I don't have to hear his damn music. Ever."

Most people would've given me a worried, slightly scared look by then, but Jordon just laughed. "No you won't. You'd need a gun for that. Besides, killing him would make the whole thing a tragedy, and everyone would want to buy his music."

I rolled my eyes and he went back to singing.

I pulled into the shop about five minutes later, relieved that there was only a beat-up old pickup, and a shiny Harley Davidson sitting in the lot, and no one on the sidewalk. I turned to Jordon, who had moved on to singing "suckin' too hard on you lollipop, love's gonna get you down!" in a ridiculously high-pitched voice.

I narrowed my eyes into an irritated glare and grabbed him by the front of the shirt mid-word. He let out a yelp as I yanked him forward, crushing my mouth on his. Our teeth clacked together and Jordon tried to say something, but I didn't let him pull away, so it was muffled against my mouth. I pulled his bottom lip into my mouth and bit down a little harder than necessary.

"Mph!" I finally let him go and he pulled back, glaring at me. "Skyler James, you ass!"

I leaned in close with a glare of my own. "You have no idea how much I hate Mika," I growled at him. At that something crossed his face that I wasn't really sure of, and his shudder was barely visible.

I rose an eyebrow at him and pulled back. When I moved to open the car door, I found myself yanked nearly halfway into Jordon's very warm lap with Jordon's very warm lips pressed into mine insistently. My left hand had landed on Jordon's thigh to catch myself, while the other was caught between me and the seat. Jordon didn't seem to mind my awkward position as he pressed into me, the hand that had grabbed the front of my shirt slipping up around my neck, into my hair, the other pressed into my chest. His lips moved against mine almost aggressively, his tongue pushing into my mouth. Then there were fingers pressing against my zipper.

"Mm! Mmmm..."

I leaned further into him, fully forgetting to breath through my nose until my lungs started to ache. I pulled back gasping, a string of saliva running from my lips to his.

"Shit," I barely managed to choke out before I extracted my hand and forced him closer for a third kiss. Then it occurred to me that we were sitting in front of the shop, in my car, kissing, and I hadn't even checked the lot for witnesses again. I pulled away reluctantly and glanced at the clock on the dash. It was 3:32. "Shit," I repeated more firmly, then looked out the windshield. There was a familiar figure standing near the door with a cigarette caught between smirking lips. "Fuck."

He gave a little two-fingered wave, his smirk firmly in place and a devious look in his bright eyes, and I knew I was firmly screwed.

A/N: GUESS WHOOOOOO! My favorite character is back :D. The next chapter will be fun to write...I hope. And only another one or two before we meet Jack and Dan-boy! Whoot! I hope you're excited, 'cause I am!