Forever Now (Forever - Book 1)

Forever Now (Forever - Book 1) by Elise Sax

Book: Forever Now (Forever - Book 1) by Elise Sax Read Free Book Online
Authors: Elise Sax
wondering what our futures would hold.
    That was plenty of stress, believe you me.
    December first had come and gone, and there was still no word from our parents. It was like they had forgotten they had kids. I pictured them living in a luxury resort on the beach in Mexico, sipping Mai Thais. I could envision my mother lying on the beach saying to The Boyfriend: “Have I forgotten something? Oh, well. Must not be important.”
    Either that or they were dead.
    Or in Jail.
    Or they never existed, and I made her up.
    I mean, anything was possible. Since I had no idea how to reach them, I guessed I would never know.
    “Six more months,” Cruz mumbled.
    “What?”
    He turned down the TV. “I was just thinking out loud. We have six more months until you graduate and I leave for my modeling. We can stop paying bills at the end of March and ride it out through June. They won’t kick us out before then. Anything we make for those two and a half months we can save. Do you understand?”
    I nodded. I had been living day to day and hoping for the best, but Cruz had been doing real planning. He was organizing everything around my graduation.
    “What do you mean leave for your modeling?” I asked.
    “Eric is going to get me work in Japan. A lot of male models make their start there.”
    “Oh.” It was the first time I heard about Japan. I got queasy thinking about him leaving, going far away from me. But wasn’t that what I wanted to do, as well? I planned on going halfway around the world, too. And then something else dawned on me.
    “Cruz,” I said. “If you can go in June, couldn’t you go now?”
    “Oh, no,” he said, not looking at me in the eyes. “It’s better to wait. I can get more pictures taken for my portfolio in the meantime, and besides, Japan is cold in the winter.”
    It was a flimsy excuse. I knew he was lying. He was obviously waiting around in order to take care of me. And I was selfish enough not to fight him on it. I would never make it at home without Cruz. He was giving me a huge gift by sticking around for another six months, putting off his career all that time. He was saving my life.
    He was also counting on me to graduate in six months and be alright to go to France with some way of supporting myself. But how could I make that happen? Mrs. Landes, the college advisor, hadn’t found a scholarship that would pay for my plane ticket and my housing in Paris.
    I had filled out an application to the Sorbonne with her help, but I didn’t know if I would be accepted. There were so many things that could go wrong. There was so much riding against me.
    “Yes, I hear Japan is cold in the winter,” I said.
    “I hate the cold.”
    “Me, too. At least I think I do.” I had never been outside of San Diego, and the city wasn’t known for cold winters.
    I finished my homework and closed my books. The movie on TV caught my attention. It was an old comedy with Katherine Hepburn and Cary Grant.
    “You’re like that,” Cruz said.
    “What did you say?” I turned to see him studying me, like I was a puzzle. He didn’t blink; His eyes were deep and fathomless and drew me in.
    “You’re like Katherine Hepburn. Classy. Smart.”
    I was slightly stunned, but I was woken out of my stupor by the doorbell. We both assumed it would be for Cruz. Who else would it be for?
    He hopped off the couch, answered the door, and came back into the living room.
    “It’s for you,” he told me. “Your friend.”
    “My what?”
    “Your friend! Your best friend!” Dahlia announced, skipping into the room. She danced around Cruz and plopped onto the couch next to me. She was wearing a man’s pinstripe suit, and her hair was French braided and twisted into a bun. She carried a large clear, plastic purse, and I could see a box of Pop Tarts among her makeup, papers, wallet, and other stuff. She kicked off her sandals and crossed her legs on the couch.
    I had felt awkward near Dahlia since the incident at school with the

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