Finding Cassidy

Finding Cassidy by Laura Langston

Book: Finding Cassidy by Laura Langston Read Free Book Online
Authors: Laura Langston
long-time favourite from childhood.
    “You did pretty well,” Mom said when I went into the kitchen a little while later.
    “I managed to choke it down.” I rinsed my plate, put it into the dishwasher and cut myself a huge chunk of butter tart square.
    Frank was on the phone. “You have my personal guarantee that the mayor will hear about your flooding problem,” he said. Obviously it was a business call. “And I’ll be in touch with the Public Works Department first thing in the morning.” That was take-charge Dad. But in spite of the confident tone and reassuring words, I couldn’t miss the oatmeal colour of his skin, the slump of his shoulders, the constant tap, tapping of his finger against the table. He was sick. And he was only going to get worse. My stomach turned inside out at the unfairness of it all. I grabbed some milk and headed back to the bedroom.
    What would Frank think of my searching for my donor? Would he be hurt, like Mom suggested? Or would he understand? It wasn’t like I wanted to meet the guy, have a relationship or anything.
    Or did I?
    I was still pondering when I headed out to meet Jason and apologize.
    “Half an hour.” Mom stood in the doorway and called down the sidewalk after me. “I want you home by ten o’clock.”
    “By ten-fifteen,” I yelled back. “You said I could have thirty minutes with him.”
    Normally Mom would have come after me, repeating the curfew in her firm, no-nonsense voice. But tonight her only answer was a nod and a wave.
    Nothing in my life was the same anymore.
    Finnelli’s Fine Foods was in Cadboro Bay, a trendy little village half a block from the ocean. Traffic was so light, I managed the drive in five minutes. Pulling into the side lot, I parked beside Jason’s beat-up Toyota at exactly 9:27. Barring last-minute demands from Mr. Finnelli, he’d be out in three minutes.
    I had my head stuffed into the bottom of my purse—I was desperate for a mint or a piece of gum—when a knock on the window made me jump.
    Jason! He held up our Saturday-night tradition: a gold and green bag of leftovers from Finnelli’s bakery.
    I leaned over to open the door. “You scared me!”
    The tang of salty sea air filled the car. I heard the distant sound of waves pounding the shore. “Sorry.” Jason slammed the door behind him; the waves grew silent.
    “Pete gave you the message.”
    “Yeah.” He tossed the bag down and leaned over to give me a kiss. Cold lips. Hot mouth. Root beer. Jason. Oh, man, I’d missed him.
    I broke the connection first. “Look, Jase, I only have a few minutes. I’m sorry about what happened at your place this morning.” Bands of colour from the grocery-store sign flashed across his face. “I never meant to fall asleep. I should have gone home right away. Your mother probably figures I’m the spawn of the devil now.”
    And how do you know you’re not?
    Jason chuckled, tossed his hair back and reached into the bag. “Something like that.” He handed me a sugar-coated raspberry bomb. Finnelli’s speciality. Since the store was closed Sunday, Mr. Finnelli always cleared them out last thing Saturday.
    “She called my mom.” I bit into the sweet, yeasty dough.
    “Yeah.” Jason’s head was stuck in the bag. He surfaced with a lemon Danish.
    “She doesn’t want us to see each other anymore.”
    “That’s just plain stupid. Of course we’re going to see each other. At school and stuff.”
    And stuff. What did that mean? My stomach butter-flied. I licked a trace of raspberry jelly from the cornerof my mouth. “Are you saying…that you only want to see me at school?”
    “No! God, no!” Jason reached over and gave me an awkward hug. He smelled faintly of apples and aftershave. The soft fleece of his team jersey tickled my nose.
    “My parents said we should cool it for a couple of weeks too,” I said as I sat up. “Cut down on phone calls. No time alone.” I rolled my eyes. “They have some nerve suggesting it after what

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