from Annie Knox's Pet Boutique Mysteries
We all have one, right? That one person with whom you might--just might--have had a romance but who remained something else (friend, acquaintance, even a stranger).
Mine's name is Sean. Sean Tucker.
We've been friends since kindergarten ... me, Sean, and Rena Hamilton. Well, we were friends. Until this one awful night our senior year in high school, when Sean showed up in my yard, tossing rocks at my window to get my attention. He was drenched from a sudden thunderstorm, and the lightning still flashed in the distance. I took one look at his face, that urgent, fraught expression, and knew something was about to change forever.
I almost waved him away, crawled back into my big iron bed, buried my head beneath my pillows.
But I didn't. I wrapped myself in my old terry robe and slipped down the stairs, joining Sean at the pergola beside the apple trees in my parents' overgrown backyard.
"I love you, Izzy."
Four words. That's all. They summed up every lingering glance, every shared laugh, every awkward brush of hands. They'd always been there, those words, but now they were spoken ... they were real. Unavoidable.
And they destroyed our friendship. Because I was dating Casey Alter. Not just dating him. Heck, we had a ten year plan culminating in married life in the Big Apple. Sean Tucker was slated to be groomsman, confidante, maybe a god father to our kids.
"I love you, Izzy," turned all that on its head.
Now, of course, Casey has moved on. So has Sean. He's dating one of the Harper clan, a trust fund baby with big blue eyes and big blonde hair.
I don't think I made a mistake that night, but I can't help wondering--when I wrap myself in my old terry robe and curl up alone in my big iron bed--what might have happened if the one who got away hadn't.
Do you ever wonder about the one that got away?