It was arguable that moving out to New York to attend NYU was possibly one of the biggest mistakes of her life. Jade had never been cut out for a busy lifestyle. The city just wasn’t for her - not at all. It was too loud, the people were too obnoxious, and she stuck out like a sore thumb. She had been a fool to ever think she could do it. The girl still intended on returning there in the fall but she was going to soak in and enjoy as much of the small town she could get. What small part of it she enjoyed. There was not a doubt in Jade’s mind she would find a place similar to this one when she was done with college. She may have hated her time here in particular but she hated the city more. She found it ironic.
She liked quiet places but this just wasn’t one of the ones she was fond of. For her spring break she had spent time with her cousin up in Aurora. Now that was a nice place and she enjoyed her time there profusely. This was not her idealistic summer break. Maybe her activities wouldn’t be changing no matter where she had been, but she would have preferred to do it somewhere else. Somewhere warmer. However, Jade didn’t have the money. Her job of hosting one of the city’s somewhat popular restaurants were enough to pay for her dorm and her gas money and other expenses but it wasn’t enough for a good enough trip. So this summer was going to be like any other one spent in Stratford - uneventful.
Uncurling from her curled up position, she bookmarked her journal and closed it, setting it beside her. ”Its me.” She confirmed quietly, taking note of his slight hesitance. Her only way of showing she agreed was a slight nod of her head. It had been awhile since she had last seen him but then again, it had been a long while since she had seen loads of people. A blush slowly spread across her cheeks. ”You still look the same as I remember you.” Jade noted, her voice hardly rising. Handsome. Outgoing. Really, really attractive. She didn’t remember being so attracted to him growing up. After all, he was her brother’s best friend. Except, she didn’t see Matt now. Just Cam.
“I didn’t know you liked it here.” When she wasn’t in her room or somewhere in her family’s old estate she had been at the coffee shop. She didn’t remember him coming there often, or at all to be honest. Even if she had her nose in a book, she would have realized it sooner or later. ”How has, um…how has college been for you?” Why did she still have to be so damn awkward! She thought she’d eventually grow out of that. Now she was probably just reminding Cam exactly of what he had known her to be. She sighed. Jade didn’t think she’d ever change from her norm at this point. She’d be awkward and quiet for life. Well, that was upsetting.
Cam merely smiled at the girl for a second, taking a little while to regain his sense. He had never expected to see her here, and he had never expected her to look like she did now. “You don’t look anything like I remember you,” he said with a laugh almost immediately after she mentioned that he looked just like he had when he was in high school. He wasn’t sure if that was a compliment or not, but he knew that when he said Jade looked nothing like he remembered her, it was. She was absolutely stunning now. Not in a grab you by the pants and take your attention as soon as you walk in sort of way, but in a subtle way. She had the kind of beauty that you wouldn’t mind just gazing at on a hot summer afternoon while she sat somewhere quiet and read and you pretended to do the same.
But Cam shook that thought out of his head. She was his best friend’s little sister, after all, and there was some kind of rule about that. Then again, he hadn’t seen Matt in nearly two years, and Jade was there, in front of him, and it looked like she had been doomed to the same summer that he had. Perhaps they could keep each other company.
“Oh I didn’t,” he told her when she said that she didn’t know he liked it at the little coffee shop that they were currently sitting in. “But then college happened, and I may or may not have gotten addicted to the stuff,” he said, holding up and indicating to the cup in his hand with a slight nod. He really couldn’t blame her for not knowing, of course. In high school, he had never come here. He had pegged it as the place for nerds and hipsters to go. Not that he had ever had anything against them, but in high school, Cam hadn’t run in the same circles as them, and because of that, for some strange, strange reason, he wasn’t allowed to have the same hangout spots as them. That, and the fact that he just didn’t like coffee back then.
“College has been great,” he told her with a smile when she asked how it had been for him. “I’m an engineering major at URI now, I don’t know if you know that or not…” he said. Truth be told, although he enjoyed college, he didn’t have a whole lot of interesting stories to tell. Just lots of friday nights spent up in his dorm studying, only every once and a while hanging out with a few friends. He took another sip of his coffee, his face contorting ever so slightly as it burned his tongue. Obviously, it needed another few minutes to cool down to a drinkable temperature. “What about you?” he asked the girl sitting across from him.
Jade held the leatherbound notebook closer to her chest, as if someone were to take it at any moment. That was very unlikely to happen as her hometown seldom to facing any crimes. It had been a long time since she had last been here - nearly a year an a half. Ever since she left for college, she really had no desire to return back to Stratford. Most of her childhood had been spent locked away in her bedroom, secluded from society as it had been a bit too loud for her, even in such a quiet town like Stratford.
The old coffee shop she used to go to towards the end of her high school years hadn’t changed a bit. It smelt like a combination of new books, caramel, fresh coffee, and a tad of whipped cream. In short, it smelt like heaven. The familiar sound of the fireplace cracking and the Coldplay Pandora station filled her ears, making Jade sigh contently. She had threatened her parents there was a good possibly she was going to be spending most of her summer in this shop. Just the smell confirmed her suspicions - she was not leaving here. She’d have her journal on her and perhaps a laptop and a book, curl up on one of the plush armchairs, and down her skinny lattes. That was productivity at her finest.
After ordering her usual to the every cheery barista, the same girl it had been before she had left, she opened up her notebook, taking a pen from her small purse. The small writing instrument was constantly on her. Words seemed to pour out of her like wildfire at random moments. Jade couldn’t control it, so whenever those spontaneous moments occurred she was always ready. She had almost been in a hurry to get to the shop as now was one of those moments. Inspiration was flooding through the confinements of Jade’s mind. She needed to get it out.
After two hours in the same position, scribbling words furiously onto her notebook, she stopped paying attention to the clock. Time was passing by. The only thing she knew for certain was that she downed about three frosted glasses of coffee; she certainly wasn’t getting much sleep later. Her eyes flickered up for just a brief moment, then flashed down in an instant. It wasn’t until a few seconds later that she let what she saw register in her mind. Her blue eyes zoomed back up before focusing on the person, suddenly disinterested in her work. It seemed as if he noticed her too. A small flush clouded her cheeks before she found it in herself to tentatively call out, “Cam? Is that you?” Her voice was hardly above a soft murmur. Was this Mathew’s childhood best friend? No, it couldn’t be…he went off to college somewhere completely else. Yet, he looked exactly like she remembered.. Very handsome. Oh dear.
Back in town for the summer Cam Turner was facing a serious predicament: boredom. The small town of Stradford, Conneticut was quiet, crime-free, and full of small children. The perfect place to spend a family, yes, but pretty much the worst place on earth to spend a summer vacation. At least, in Cam’s mind it was. He had no idea what he was going to do for the next two months, and his only hope was that he would run into some old friends who still happened to be at least somewhat interesting.
If there was one thing that Cam had learned in his three years of college, it was that coffee was a gift from the gods. While he was at school, he developed a morning routine of get up, get dressed, get coffee, go to class, and many others his age had the exact same routine. Then, later in the afternoon, when the coffee high was coming to a halt, there was more coffe poured down his throat. This routine had become more of an addiction for him over the past few years, and he fully intended to keep it up while he was home for the summer.
Now, it was time for his afternoon fix, so leaving his house without even saying goodbye, he made his way to the coffee shop that most high school upperclassman tended to frequent. While it required that he spend a good amount of time with high school students, which he wasn’t exactly fond of, it did have good coffee, and that almost made up for it. As he waited in line, he tapped his foot and looked around at all of the people that made up what could only be classified as the after school rush. One girl, in particular, caught his eye. She was very pretty, but she also looked very, very familiar. He couldn’t put his finger on exactly who it was, but as soon as he had ordered and gotten his coffee and she called out his name, he was positive he knew who the girl in the chair was.
“Jade?” he replied. “You know, I thought that was you,” he said with a laugh as he walked over and sat down in the chair opposite her. “My god, it’s been ages, hasn’t it?” he practically exclaimed. “And, wow, you’re all grown up.” A huge smile was on his face, one that he couldn’t quite explain. This was the girl who had bugged him and Matt on all of those afternoons. Asked if she could play with them, yelled when they touched one of her books. He had never even given her a second thought in high school. She had been two years younger than him, rather awkward, and his best friend’s sister. And yet now, there she was, sitting in the coffee shop that he had hardly ever gone to while he was in high school, and looking positively beautiful.