Picture Perfect: A Romantic Short Story

My life had always been picture perfect. I was born into a wealthy family; my parents were loving, bought me whatever I wanted, I was popular at school. Boys loved me, girls wanted to be me. I never thought I would end up running away from home, But I did. All for a boy. One amazing boy who changed my life for the better.

It was a warm summer day when we met. I was going to the country club to meet up with some of my student council friends when I had to stop off for gas. I almost never went to the gas station but sadly if I didn't, I was going to end up stranded in the middle of no where.

I pulled up to one of the pumps and waited for one of the attendants to fill up my car. That's when I saw him. He came over dressed in some Levis and a grease covered t-shirt. His hair was a bit shaggy but then again, what guy had perfect hair nowadays? I could tell when he first laid eyes on me that he thought I was attractive. Guys just always gave off this look where I could tell "He thinks I'm hot."

He stood there for a few seconds, starring with those wide brown eyes of his. His glasses were slipping down his nose a bit as he did.

I waited a few more minutes then snapped my fingers to get his attention.

"Wha?" He mumbled.

"Umm…my car? It kind of needs gas." I said in a snippy voice. God, I was such a bitch back then.

He frowned a little but went over to the machine putting the pump in my gas door.

As we waited for my tank to fill up, he started to examine my car. "Sweet ride you got here."

I shrugged. "It's no big deal."

His eyes looked like they had popped out of his head. "Yeah right! This is a fricking 2010 dodge challenger!"

"So?" I asked, narrowing my eyes.

"So? This must have cost a lot of money."

"Not really."

"Wait…" He pondered. "I know who you are. You're on the student council, right?"

"Maybe. It depends on who you are." I countered.

He laughed a bit, sticking out one of his grease covered hands. "I'm Seth Davis."

I scrunched my nose a little, taking his filthy hand with the tips of my fingers. "Katarina."

"Last name?" He asked.

I was unsure whether I should really tell this kid my last name. He apparently went to my school but still, I had enough stalkers. "Sinclair."

"Ahh. I was wondering who in our town was rich enough to own a car like this. But now I know. Your dad owns the real-estate office, right?"

I nodded, a bit confused. "Yeah…Why does it matter?"

"It doesn't really. I guess I just want to get to know you." He smiled.

Wow. He was the first guy who ever wanted to just get to know me. But then again, it could be a ploy. Many guys tried to trick me for ether money or sex. Mostly the money, but there were some sick guys who just wanted a fuck buddy. Thankfully after the first two tricks, I upped my game and made sure boys never got close to my money or my body. This one seemed different though.

"Hmm. Well you seem nice." I commented, giving him a charming smile. My thoughts then were 'May aswell try him out. If he ends up like the others, I'll just throw him out to the sharks.' By sharks, I meant the guys in student council AKA My rich football boys.

He smiled back. "Well maybe you'd like to go out some time? Maybe get a bite to eat?"

I nodded. "That sounds nice. I'll think about it." I looked at my gas gage to see it was full. "Well I guess I'll see you later then?"

"Of course. At school." He answered, taking the pump out of my car.

I reached out the window, handing him a few bills.

He counted, his eyes going wide. "Wow. This is like forty dollars more then you owe me."

I smiled. "Let's say that I honor a job well done."

As I drove away I thought, 'That boy is a special one.'

The next time I saw him was at school. I arrived on the first day, wanting to find my locker before all the lower classmen showed up. I went to my locker to find him at the locker right next to mine. He turned around and gave me a large grin.

"Well, it seems we're locker neighbors."

I laughed. "Nice to see you again Seth."

"You remembered my name." He sounded surprised.

I tilted my head, my long brunette hair falling to the side. "Why wouldn't I?"

He shrugged. "You just seemed like the type to not care about the 'common folk'."

I gave a small laugh. "No. I may be popular but I'm not rude. Well, not to nice people that is."

He smiled. "So…About that date we talked about…"

"Yes." I answered.

"I-I didn't even ask yet. Or say where." He stammered.

I shrugged. "You don't need to tell me where. I don't care where it is."

"Uhh…Alright. Tuesday at seven?" He suggested.

"It's a date."

I gave him one of my alluring smiles before flipping my hair and walking off to my English lit class.

On the Tuesday, he pulled up in front of my estate in his beat up pickup truck. I myself found it charming. My parents on the other hand, didn't.

"Who is this boy Katarina?" Dad asked. My father was Italian so he still had somewhat of an accent. But he made tons of money because of it so it all worked out in the end.

"He's just a boy from school daddy." I assured him, putting the essentials in my purse. Cell phone, IPod, lip gloss, money.

"He doesn't seem very dignified." My mother commented, strutting in the hallway. My mom was pretty much model gorgeous. I assumed that's where I got my looks from.

"Does it really matter? Doesn't personality count for anything?" I asked, giving myself a small glance in the mirror.

My parents made a look. The kind of look that pretty much said "Has my child gone crazy?"

"Class still means a lot." My father ended the conversation.

I rolled my eyes. "I'll be home in a few hours. Bye."

I walked out to find him standing in front of his truck with his usual smile on his face.

"Finally. I've been waiting here forever." He laughed.

I raised my eyes doubtfully at him. "Sure, sure. You only just pulled up five minutes ago."

"Hey, five minutes is a long time to have to wait." He retorted.

The date was wonderful. We went to the movies then to a local diner. I had never gone to a diner before so I was a bit uncertain but it was actually a very quaint place. Seth told me he went here all the time when he was younger. I was going to ask why he hadn't lately but held my tongue. I didn't know him very well and didn't want to step over my boundaries.

Afterwards he drove me home, giving me a small hug once he parked in front of my house. I was about to get out when he grabbed my hand.

"Hmm?"

To my surprise, he pulled me back into my seat, kissing me right on the lips.

At first I was shocked, then mesmerized. The two of us broke apart, both of us blushing.

"Umm…See you tomorrow." He stammered.

"Yeah. Tomorrow."

After he had driven away and I'd gone to my room, I realized I had feelings for him.

After a week the two of us started dating. We did the typical couple things. Holding hands, stealing kisses before class, passing notes in the classes we did have together, texting each other during classes we didn't have together. It felt so romantic and for the first time in a long time, I felt like I could truly be myself.

One day we decided to ask each other questions so we could fully get to know each other. I was surprised when he asked me a question I'd never heard before.

"So, what's it like living in that big house?" He asked while playing with his phone.

"Pardon?" I tilted my head. I didn't understand what in the world he was asking.

"What's it like living in your house? Is it awesome, empty, fun?"

"Umm…well when you put it that way, it's rather lonely." I answered quietly.

"How come?" He questioned, looking into my eyes with his dark brown ones.

"Well, it's just me, my mother and father. We have maids and stuff but I don't see them around at all. My parents are rarely home since my dad is working and my mother is always at the country club with my father's friends wives. I'm usually all alone in that big house." I explained. That was the first time I had ever really said my feelings on my home life. It made me feel better but sad at the same time.

He nodded. "That does sound lonely. It sounds a lot better then my home life though."

"Why? What's your home life like?" Realizing how personal that was I tried to take back my question. "Unless it's private, then you don't have to tell me."

He shook his head. "No it's cool. Well, my dad split when I was really young so I don't remember him too well. Then my mom got with this other dude, had my sister and now my life sucks."

I nodded a bit. "How exactly does it suck?"

"I just hate being at home I guess. Since if I'm not working then I have to be home looking after my sister or doing something at home. I'm not able to hang out much so last Tuesday was a lucky break. It's depressing being at home." He sighed.

I frowned. "Sounds like we're both depressed when we're at home."

He nodded. "But we're not depressed when we're talking to one another." He smiled brightly.

I laughed. "Very right. We keep each other from sinking into the terrible black hole of depression."

Three months after we got together, my parents found out I was dating Seth. To be very straight to the point, they did not approve of him. Not one bit. They forbid me to see him.

"Why can't I date him?" I asked them, trying to be calm about the whole ordeal.

"He is one of the common folk. You deserve so much better than someone who works at a gas station. You need someone who will support you." My father argued.

"He is able to support me! I don't care what class he's in. I love him." I told them.

My mother gasped, like one of those women in those southern dramas.

"You're a child. You don't know what love is!" He yelled.

"I'm seventeen! I'm not a child! I know what I feel and what I feel is love." I screamed back. This felt so odd. I'd never once talked back to my parents. I was always the perfect little girl. But I knew, I had to fight for this.

"You do not speak to me in that tone!" He said, outraged with my rebellious behavior. "Go to your room and you are forbidden to speak to that boy ever again!"

I lay on my canopy bed, sobbing. I couldn't believe my parents were that shallow to judge Seth on his social class then what really mattered, his heart. My phone started to buzz in my jean pocket. I picked it up, almost dying when I saw it was Seth.

I opened the text to read, 'I heard what happened. Can you call me?'

I slid open the phone, texting back 'I can't call. My parents will hear me. I'm so scared.'

After a few minutes my phone buzzed again. I opened the text and read 'Don't be scared. I have a plan; I'll explain the details tomorrow at school. For now I'll talk to you until you want to go to sleep if you want?'

'Alright. I'll meet you tomorrow at our lockers then. Can you? I don't think I can fall asleep feeling like this.' I texted back quickly.

We kept texting each other mushy romantic lines till I got tired and fell asleep, feeling content and loved.

The next day the two of us arrived at our lockers before anyone else had even shown up to school.

We greeted each other with a kiss, grabbed our books out of our lockers and made our way to the field where we usually sat and talked until the bell rang, making us part.

"So, what exactly is your plan?" I asked, sipping the coffee out of my travel mug.

"Well…It's sort of stupid and I'm not sure if you would go for it or not." He said quietly, fiddling around with objects in his jacket pockets.

"You won't know unless you tell me." I said back.

"Okay…We should run away." He announced.

"What? You mean like pack up our stuff and leave town?"

He nodded. "Yeah. Your turning eighteen next month so then, we'll both be old enough to live on our own legally. I've been saving up since I started working to buy a place of my own and just leave this town. Now it's going to be even better because I'll have you by my side. Well, if you want to go through with it that is."

I nodded eagerly. "Of course! But…How will we make sure we won't be found?"

"Well, my parents know about the plan so they won't care. Only problem is your parents." He sighed. "We could always get your name changed or something?"

"Yeah. I actually have a lot of money in my account right now so I could use some of it for the ID change. I can also help out with the house and stuff."

"Sounds like a plan."

That day we made every single little detail of our plan. On June 30th, he would come to my house right after my parents went to bed. I would sneak out with all of my belongings and we would drive off to start our new lives together.

The night of June 30th. Probably the best night of my life. After my birthday dinner, I spent the rest of the time in my room. I packed up most of my essentials. Some clothing, a toothbrush, toothpaste, my hair brush, a few photos, my laptop and my notebook that held every heartfelt thing I had ever written. I zipped up my suitcase, watching out the window for his truck to pull up. When it did, my heart almost leapt out of my chest. I scampered down the stairs softly, making sure I didn't make a single noise. I set my suitcase down on the floor, slipped on a pair of cross trainers, picked up my things and slipped out of the house without waking my parents up. I ran to his truck, running into his strong arms which embraced me almost instantly.

"I missed you." I whispered.

"I missed you too." He whispered back.

He took my suitcase, putting it carefully into the back since he knew I'd give him hell if he broke anything in there.

The two of us climbed into the truck, saying goodbye to our tiny little town forever.

The first few months were difficult for me. I'd changed my name to Kat Stuart. Seth tried to get me to change my last name to his but I decided that I only wanted to change it to his when we got married. The name change took a lot of getting used to but Seth still called me Katarina so not much would change. Our apartment was quite small but I loved it. It was cozy and made me feel truly at home. I still felt home sick though. I missed my parents and my friends. For the first few months I barley even slept in my own room by myself. Seth had to stay by me, stroking my hair since my dreams were invaded by my past. I just couldn't get away from it like he could. I felt so guilty for leaving my parents without telling them. But then again, it was my only choice.

One day, Seth and I were sitting at the breakfast table watching the local news like every morning when something shocking showed up on the TV.

I looked at the screen to see my picture. I stopped eating and just starred at the screen.

"Oh crap…" I sighed.

"Two months ago, Katarina Sinclair went missing from her estate in a small town called Calendar. No one has seen or heard from her since her birthday. Her parents reported they hadn't seen any signs of suspicious behavior from her or anyone enter or leave their grounds. If anyone has seen this girl, please call-"

Seth turned off the TV as I sat there, eyes still glued to the screen in shock.

"Seth, what are we going to do?" I asked in a whisper.

"I have an idea." He responded.

Two hours later, Seth and I went to the local drug store. At first I had no idea what his plan was. Then he made me stop in front of the selection of hair dye.

"As much as it pains me to say this, you're going to have to dye your hair."

I'd already gotten in cut when I'd first arrived since the styling of my hair was a dead giveaway. It was now cut in a very short straight bob compared to my long luxurious style.

My eyes scanned through the dye until I found a colour that really caught my eye. A black with a blue tinge to it. I picked up the box, holding it up to him.

"I like this one."
We payed for the hair dye kit and left the building quickly so no one would recognize me.

The next year on Valentine's Day, all the news stories had died down. Everyone in our small town had officially proclaimed I was dead and moved on. For that I should have been sad but instead I was happy. I could spend my life happy by Seth's side.

For our Valentine's Day he decided to surprise me by taking me to a local fair. It was amazing. We went on a few rides, played a few games and watched a very beautiful display of fireworks.

As we watched them he held me in his lap and whispered, "Are you happy?"

"Of course I am." I whispered back.

"You don't miss your old life anymore?"

"No."

"How come? It seemed like you missed your perfect life before."

"Well, in my eyes this life I have right here it perfect. I'm with you."

"I love you Katarina Sinclair." He whispered, putting a silver band on my ring finger.

"I love you Seth Davis." I replied, touching the silver band that rested on his own.

-Fin-