First off I would like to apologize for any repeating mistakes this chapter has, my computer decided to chew up my words and spit them out all over the chapter. i think i caught all of them but there could still be some small ones that i didnt catch. again, i am truely sorry for any mistakes.

Chapter 2 : Waking Up to Smell the Roses

"Hey Nat, Carter." Melissa walked by and found and empty seat next to Natalie. Natalie couldnt help but notice the tall, perfect drop dead gorgeous boy walking behind her. His shaggy blonde hair hung in his eyes, and he seemed liked he worked out, he could probably lift her with his pinky finger if he wanted to.

"Hey Melissa?"

"Yeah?"

"Do you want to tell me something?" Natalie jerked her finger to the boy. "I need an explination as to why you brought Mr. America into our premises. I thought you were sweet on my brother." Natalie watched as Melissas face fell.

"First off, ew, your brother is like 21." Natalie couldnt help but stiffle a laugh, they had been down this road one to many times for her to believe a single word out of Melissa's mouth. "Second, he said you two knew each other? So do you?" Natalie shrugged her shoulders, he didnt look familar, and if she had known him, she was pretty sure she would remember, she simply didnt forget a pretty boy like that.

"Um, Melissa, I have never seen him before. Trust me, if i did I would have told you. Now spill, how did you meet him, where did he come from and how exactly does this sexy beast know who I am?" Melissa just shook her head, on Natalie could catch her off guard like this.

"Nat, he is one of the guys in my martial arts class that I have been taking since I can remember, he is actually from this town and he says he knew you, but he didnt tell me where from."

"Okay, well then tell me his name or something, god why do you have to be so cryptic?"

"His name, hmm why dont you ask him yourself. Seems like he is getting along with Carter real well, now why dont I go and steal my man from your eye candy and let you two get reaquainted."

Natalie could hear her talking to the boy, but no matter what she couldnt figure out who he was. He wasnt someone from the chuch, unless he was brand spaken new, and he didnt go to their school, so how in the world did he know her. Did he help her to the car with her grocerices, was he someone who sold movie tickets at the theatre she always went to, or was he apart of the crowd she hung out with to get high off of poetry. The last one seemed plausible, if it werent for his looks. Looks like that said he didnt care about school, looks like that said that he was very high maintance, but then again she could be easily wrong. As he and Melissa talked she saw him glancing at her and smiling every so often. Almost as if to say 'i cant believe it.' That look that he held in his eyes, hope and the possibility of rekindling something that was long ago lost.

He was sauntering over. How could it be possible that they were all sitting here and he was sauntering over to her as if he was a ghost of her past. Slowly as if to torture her he sat down.

"Hey Natalie, remember me?"

"No, I can honestly say that I dont remember seeing you anywhere, I would remember you, I'm pretty certain of that."

"Oh come on Rat-a-Tat Nat, you sure you dont remember me." She gasped. No one had called her that in a long time. There was only one person who ever called her that who didnt say it with a condescending tone.

"There is no way. You cant be Conner, Conner was short and chubby and innocent looking, and he was sweet and never had anything bad to say about anyone ever. Even when everyone were complete assholes to him."

"Nat, its me."

"No."

"Yes, come on Natalie, I just grew up a little."

"No, you grew up alot."

"You could say that. But Nat, you have grown up alot too. I mean I knew who you were but you are not the little girl who i use to play with in the sand box with. You've grown into this beautiful young lady. The hair is still the same." Natalie clutched at her hair.

"I know, dont get me started, I hate my hair."

"Why, your hair has always been beautiful."

"Shut up! Conner it looks like my head is on fire half of the time." She watched as his eyes lit up, they were dancing with laughter. The smile widening across his face.

"I see the temper still matches the hair. I wish you had used that temper on Matt and his friends, man if only he knew the kick ass fire ball you were he would of left the both of us alone and I wouldnt of had to leave because of them." She let her mind roam, elementry school wasnt exactly the happiest time in their lives, reliving the horrors of the nick names and the memories that left them scarred for life. She could still see smirks of her classmates as they danced around her pointing out her crooked teeth, making her feel anything less than beautiful.

Conner had it worse. At least they didnt claim she ate the students that moved away, but what was even worse than that was going through the pysical abuse. Conner was always being tripped in the lunch line, and at recess being shoved into the mud. Matt did anything to make Conner the continued laughing stock of the school. Matt was just a jerk. A popular jerk who got practically the whole school to follow his wrath. No one dared to be their friend, because then they would be subjected to what Conner and her lived through every day.

"I'm sorry." She shot him her most apologetic look. "Conner, I wish that I could have stopped those guys, I wish that neither one of us had to go through that crap, but we did and we are survivors."

Survivors? He still couldnt walk past that park without feeling every bruise, every memory of him being beaten up by Matt and his friend on replay. At least Nat never had to go through that. She was special, because when he left they had the decency to stop picking on her. At least that was what Conner had said.

"Nat? How were things after I left?"

"You want the sugar coated truth or the truth?"

"Lets go with the truth."

"I was miserable. I hated myself for not knowing what happened to you and then Matt zeroed in on me for quite some time. It took until 7th grade for those assholes to leave me alone about my teeth. And then I got braces, so they started in on my clothes, and then they made fun of the fact that I had braces to fix the one quality that they hated about me. I had no one to turn to, not even you."

He felt so guilty. "So, I'm guessing that Carter knows the sugar coated truth version."

"Nope, Carter just thinks that because they stopped for a little while when we were in grade school that everything from there was an easy battle to win.""Wow, hes changed, he use to be alot more self centered." She shot him a crazed look.

"Carter? Self centered. Dude, you have been gone far too long. Daniel is the self centerd one. Carter actually wants to know whats going on in your day to day life. Daniel however is a different story. I really only talk to him when his girlfriend is around. At least she makes him tolerable."

"Ahh Daniel, ya thats right he was quite a pain in the ass back in the day. Hey didnt you have three brothers? Oh what was his name...Luka, ya hows Luka. I havent seen the little guy since he was born."

"Luka is well, hes pretty awesome. Quite a cutie and well I am sure you will meet him sometime tonight if he decides to leave my grandparents table."

"Hes got to be what, six or seven now?"

"Somewhere around there. Hows Toby?"

"Toby? Toby is a dad now, crazy right. My brother had a kid. He was so stupid, got a girl knocked up his freshman year. Stupid kid was in such a hurry to grow up."

"Wait a second you are an uncle?"

"Yeah. Why?"

"Thats awesome, niece or nephew."

"Nephew. His name is Richard, but every one calls him Rick. He was born just a couple months ago. He weighed 8 pounds and 7 ounces. He is such a chunky butt now."

"I am so happy for you Conner."

"How about you, any kids, boyfriend, nieces or nephews I need to know about?"

"Nope. To young for kids, my last relationship was a huge failure so who needs a man and Carter was getting serious with this one girl and it wouldnt suprise me if Daniel and Andria had a baby soon but as of yet, nope, nothing but the same old boring family you left me with.

He had to laugh at that one. Her same boring family he left her with? Her family was anything but boring. Her two older brothers proved that. Carter had a tattoo for crying out loud, and Daniel was the same shovanistic prick he was when he left but he somehow managed to charm a girl into dating him. At least he went outside his me bubble for a little while. There was nothing boring about that girls family. No sir. They were all on the crazy scale, all except Natalie, she seemed to be the only normal one. Well normal for her family any ways. The only thing weird about Natalie was the color of her hair, she never blended in as one of the family.

He scooted in closer, they hadnt been this close to her in ages. "Nat, Ive missed you so much."

"Me too Conner." with that he laid his head in her lap and started to doze off when the paster got up to the mic. He could feel her fingers running through his hair. He didnt want the night to end. He hoped she felt the same way.

Authors Note:

This chapter was really hard for me to write because 1) Conner is rarely sappy like this, on rare occasions he is but you practically have to bribe the boy with steak or pizza. something man worthy. 2) we dont talk about stuff like this, mostly because we just get ticked off and yell...alot. You wont find us talking about Matts character or what happened in school alot.

however the boyfriend/girlfriend issue is something we went into depth with. thats coming up soon :) hope you enjoyed this chapter.

Please leave a review. I really dont care if you call this crap or not. I would like to know your opinion what ever it is :)