Aww man. Kat’s probably gonna be grounded for a month now. One month without Kat.
That’s worse than the death sentence.
Oh God, what if they send her to grand parents? I couldn’t live.
“Two-bit you seem to be thinkin’ awful hard.” Soda said bringing me out of my thoughts, “And for you that’s scary.”
I shrugged and I bit into my burger. We all decided to go out with our girls.
“C’mon Two-bit tell us what’s up.” Steve said.
“I’m just wonderin’ ’bout Kat right now.” I said and swallowed, “What if she gets in trouble with her brother ’cause of us? Or what if she’s send down to her grandparents? What then? We all know how much she hates them, and I can’t help but wonder if she is sent away, how are we gonna apologise for that? How are we gonna tell her we’re sorry for stickin’ out noses in business it don’t belong?”
“You got a good point there.” Soda backed me up, “How many times did Kat press us to tell her who we liked? And you can’t say shit ’bout you Steve, she practically handed you Evie.”
“She did not.” Evie argued.
I had to laugh. I remembered that day so well.
“Come on Stevie!” Kat whined as we walked around town looking for something to do. This was a couple years back so I was about 16, Soda and Steve were roughly 15, leaving Kat at the end as 14.
“Why do’you wanna know so much?” He hissed to her.
She crossed her arms and held her ground as she stopped us all dead in our tracks by standing right in front of us, ” ‘Cause if you don’t I’m gonna tell the entire school tomorrow, Steve Randle is queer for Curly Shepard.”
Steve was fuming as Soda and I were trying not to burst out laughing.
“Now you gonna tell me, or you want that goin’ around?” She asked knowing she’d won.
Steve sighed and ran a hand through his greased hair mumbling curses under his breath.
“All of ya’ll have to promise you ain’t gonna tell a soul.” He hissed, we all nodded, “I kinda, maybe, sorta, like Evie.”
“Dalton?” Kat asked.
He nodded redder than a tomato. An evil grin spread across Kat’s face, one that we’ve all learned either to love of be terrified of. Right now, Soda I should of loved it, and Steve should be terrified.
“You promised.” He hissed.
“I had my fingers crossed.” She said and took off down the street, Steve bolting after her
Soda and I ran after them to make sure they didn’t kill one another. Kat was the best runner out of all of us though, so before we knew it the three of us were walking, very fast, after her. Of course she was nice, and not stupid so she slowed down for us. But Steve soon bolted after her again when we coming up on the field where the cheerleaders practiced on Saturdays.
We watched her run down to them, an d throw her arms around Evie in a hug like stance and said something before looking over at Steve catching up, she looked up at her for a good second before she was gone again. Steve chasing after her. We were laughing as we followed.
“Sorry ’bout this ladies.” Soda apologised as we ran by, I just whistled.
Soda and I laughed together obviously remembering it.
“Good times.” Soda laughed.
“Exactly what did she say to you that day anyway?” I asked Evie.
She shrugged, “Just that Steve Randle wanted to take me out to the movies this weekend but he was too busy and nervous to ask me out right now. But if I hinted that I liked him, he might man up to ask me. Then she grinned and was gone faster than a bullet, and then Steve zoomed after her.” She giggled.
Steve just looked at her.
“What?” She asked.
“That’s seriously it?” He asked.
She nodded, “And to be honest, I was waiting for you to ask me out a while before that too.”
“So you could have had her a while longer.” Christine laughed.
Pony, Tootsie, Dally, Sally, me, Lilly, and Soda had to join in. Johnny cracked a grin.
“And then we owe all this to that little girl.” Soda said motioning to all of us.
We all had top nod.
“You know what I think we should do?” Pony said.
“What’s that Pony?” Soda asked.
“We go over to Kat’s and tell her we’re sorry while we still can, and tell her that if she really likes this guy and don’t wanna tell us than she don’t have to, but we want what’s best for her.” He said.
“That’s mature of you Ponyboy.” Christine said dreamily looking up at him.
He smiled down at her, and I made a choking sound. They looked annoyed, but stopped.
“Remember Ponyboy,” I told him, “You might be dating her, but that’s still my baby sis.”
“C’mon.” Steve said gettin’ up, “Let’s go talk to that girl.”
We all agreed and left. We had to talk to that girl, now.
And as much as it was killing me not to know who it was she liked, I knew it was probably best not to press her for it. Or at least that’s what I told myself when we entered an empty house of the Constantine/Johnes.
“Anyone home!” We called out.
This was weird. I thought. There is always someone home. We heard noises that sounded like they were coming from the back yard. We went through to the kitchen to the back door. Dally opened it and threw open the screen door.
We filed out one after another, I was the last one out.
“No fair!” Kat yelled.
One of the twins had her eating the grass. I guess they were wrestling.
“Sorry, Kitten.” He said gettin’ off her.”
“So this is how rule breakers are punished.” Soda said out loud, they looked over at us, “I want in.”
“Bring it Curtis!” Kat yelled jumping up as Soda ran to tackle her.
“Which one?” He asked.
“Pepsi!” She yelled and tackled him to the ground and pin in such a way I was sure he was trying not to cry.
“You win.” He groaned.
She let him go and he rolled over to breath.
“So what brings you guys over here?” Junior asked us.
“We wanted to apologise to Kat.” I said.
She shook her head, and I stopped, “I know why you guys pressed me like you did.” She said, “And I know you wanna make sure I get a good guy, and I assure you, he is. But there are somethings that a girl needs to figure out on her own, without the help of friends or family.”
“Then where do we come in?” Evie asked crossing her arms.
She grinned, “When I realize I made a mistake, family and true friends will be there for me to tell me it was worth it, because now I know better. For instance, I think we all know not to trust a man that’s about five or so years older than you who comes into a gas station and asks for directions, and then asks you out because he’s probably up to no good.
“I hear that.” Lilly giggled.
“We all make mistakes guys, let’s accept them and move on.” She said.
“How, are you the youngest?” Buddy asked her.
She shrugged, “Mama and Daddy decided to have five amazing sons to be the guides of their baby girl, first because they knew they wouldn’t be around.” She grinned.
“Let’s go raise a little hell.” Steve told her.
She and Soda got up together and she hugged each of her brothers good-bye. And we were out of the house walking down the street like old times. Like things should be.