It Can Only Go Up From Here Chapter One: The Best Day (sample)

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The following is the start of the first chapter in the continuation of "To Be a Different Someone". I never intended to continue the storyline but I also thought that Jennifer's story was not complete.

While the first book did not concentrate on outside forces, this story does show the world attempting to butt its way into her life.

Chapter One:
The Best Day

November 2nd 1999 came and went with Daniel Kane winning the election for state representative.
I couldn't care less. I didn't pay attention.
Actually, that's kind of a lie as his face was everywhere up to and beyond that day. I could be at the mall, his face was there.
Walking into class; there he was on the newspaper.
Billboards and on lawn signs...postcards in the trash and littered on the ground.
I quit watching television a long time ago so I missed out on the soundbites, thank God.

Mom ceased coming by a few days afterward. I would want to think it was because maybe she finally thought about leaving me alone but I never got to ask her directly.
"Did dad ever send his lawyers after her?" I asked Grans.
"Your Father?" She huffed over the phone. "Your father can get a paper cut on his nether regions for all I care. I doubt he will do a thing, Jen. No one likes to air their dirty laundry. Especially politicians."
"Yes, ma'am," I replied as I sat down on a chair in the kitchen. I could never bring myself to sit on the counter--a la Krys--as I talked on the phone. It was my house too, but out of respect to my adoptive parents I used chairs and kept my feet off of the walls.
"Did Lydia tell you everyone's coming for Thanksgiving this year?"
"Yes ma'am."
"And by everyone, I also mean you need to bring your boyfriend along too."
"Grans," I replied as I felt a flush of red to my face.
"Well, he is, isn't he?"
"Yes, ma'am, but I don't want Matt to think--"
"--In my day, the boy introduced his girl to family."
I stood up and paced as far as the phone cord would allow.
"Yeah, if they planned to court and possibly get married one day."
"Don't tell me you haven't thought about it." She replied as I closed my eyes.
"Of course I have, but, we're still taking it slow and if I bring him along--"
"I want you to bring him. I want to see him before the you two split up or ditch or whatever the word for breaking up is these days."
"Yes, ma'am. I'll ask him.'
Krys stepped into the kitchen and perched herself on the kitchen counter.
"That's all you can do, I need to let you go now, Jen, time to get some work done around the house before I retire for the night."
"Grans?"
Krys held a slight smile on her face as she looked around the kitchen, in a futile attempt to pretend she wasn't listening.
"Yes, dear?"
"Tell mom hello for me."
"When I see her, I will."
"Goodnight, grans."
"Goodnight, Jen"
The line clicked off and I hung the phone up.

"How much of that were you listening to?"
"Just enough to know that Matt will have a room on the lower floor and we will be in the guest cottage."
I nodded in reply as Krys kicked her feet out and jumped to the floor.
"Okay, so, we need to work on something new for regionals."
"When are regionals?"
"Spring, not much time to get a routine going,"
"It's only November."
We walked out of the kitchen and to the stairs in the foyer.
"Like I said. So, come on, I need you to think of some stunts we can work on. How do you feel about being a flyer?"
"What?"
"You're light enough and June's been suspended from the squad.."
"Alright! I mean--". June was considered the 'worst case cheerleader'--she never smiled and made a minimal effort to learn a lot of the cheers but she was extremely limber and light enough to throw into the air. And as long as she was flying, no one cared that she looked like was pissed off at life. All. The. Time.
"--I know. But the show must go on and we are down one flyer. So, starting tomorrow afternoon, eat light."
"That's very funny, Miss hyper-metabolism."
"I know, I know," she said with a cheshire grin and a slight curtsey.
"One day it's just going to just stop and you're not going to be able to eat all the ice cream or, or a plate of fudge brownies or a whole sub sandwich.
"Hmm-mmm. Now I feel hungry."
"Who know, you may actually have to go running with me!"
"Horrors!"

We walked into my room--it was a bit of mess with multiple sketchbooks all over the desk and fabric bolts leaning on the walls. There was a little spot in the center where one could actually see the rug.
"Are these all for prom?"
"Yep," I replied as I closed two of the books and stacked them on the corner of the desk in an OCD-infused process.
"Thought you already decided."
"We're going over matching outfits."
"Are you already planning a bridal design too?" She asked as she pointed at a sketch of a tuxedo.
I didn't answer as I closed and flipped the book over, but I didn't have to--as my face said everything Krys needed to know.
"Let me know when he gives you a ring." Krys stepped to the clear spot on the floor.
"You'll be the first to know."
"Has he actually hinted to you?"
"Well, we've talked about it. I mean you did too--"
"When I was six--and about Donnie Wahlberg. That's not going to happen now. Okay, come here."



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