Blue Starlight Fanfiction

Chapter 9

A few months had gone by since Nick was taken from his mother, and he was becoming more comfortable being with the Littrell’s. Christmas was just around the corner and Nick was treating it like any other day.

“Dude, you’re not excited about presents? Every kid loves presents.” Brian commented when they walked to the park to play some basketball. Nick was starting to show interest in things other than studying, with Brian’s encouragement.

“I just wish Amanda was back. I miss her.” Nick muttered.

“You like her, don’t you?” Brian smirked, tossing him the ball. Nick blushed as he caught it…he hadn’t admitted this to anyone, not even himself that he was attracted to her.

“Kind of.” he shrugged thoughtfully.

“You should have told her before she left….”

“No way. I don’t want to compromise our friendship like that. Besides, she’s up in New Jersey….and I am…well, I’m stuck here.”

Brian and Nick started shooting around for a bit before taking a break.

“Don’t think like that, Nick. She’s gonna come back. She just had to go home and take care of some stuff. You’ll see her again.” Brian reassured him as he nodded.

“I guess.” Nick agreed.

“So what do you want for Christmas….besides Amanda?” Brian winked, grinning.

Nick shoved him playfully and they laughed. Brian was surprised, he was getting stronger every day, his muscles were toning up from playing basketball. Not to mention, Jackie was making sure he didn’t go hungry. Nick was still skinny but he didn’t look so gangly anymore.

“I told you, I don’t know. I’ve never had a real Christmas. My mom and I never celebrated….I’ve never even had a Christmas tree.” Nick replied. For as long as he could remember, Christmas was an unknown holiday at the Carter house, ever since he was five….before his father left.

“You’re in for a treat. We are going to Kentucky to see my cousin’s family. You’ll love it.” Brian beamed. Nick smiled, but somehow he didn’t think the trip would go so well.

Nick was quiet during the trip to Kentucky, it took almost half a day to drive there, the family stopping here and there for rest breaks. He liked seeing the world outside of Florida, it was definitely a nice change. During the car ride Nick watched the world pass by as he wrote in his notebook, writing whatever came to mind.

“What are you writing?” Brian asked, peering over at it. Nick held it against his chest so he couldn’t see.

“Stuff.” he shrugged, blushing. Brian managed to wrestle the notebook away and he looked at it for a bit, flipping through the pages.

“I didn’t know you wrote poetry.” Brian whispered. Nick stole the notebook back and stuffed it into his bag, feeling embarrassed. Nobody was supposed to see the songs he’d been working on.

“It’s just a hobby.” he said, shrugging again and flipping his blonde bangs out of his eyes. His hair was getting long, hanging just below his eyelashes.

Nick didn’t feel that he was particularly good at anything but cleaning and cooking. He worried often what would happen once he graduated from high school. He knew his grades would carry him to college but deep down, Nick knew that bigger things were waiting…he just wasn’t sure what they were. He hoped they included Amanda at the very least. As they neared Lexington, Nick wondered if she was thinking of him, like he was of her.

“We’re here.” Brian said suddenly, nudging him. They all went into the house where everyone greeted each other, Nick stood off to the side awkwardly.

“You didn’t tell us you were bringing someone with you, Harold.”

“I’m sorry Jerald. We tried calling before we left but nobody answered. This is Nick, he lives with us and we couldn’t leave him alone for the holidays.” Brian’s father explained. Brian’s uncle looked at Nick as if he were a stray cat that had wandered in….he didn’t feel welcome.

We don’t really have room for him.” the woman next to Jerald said. She looked at him the same way. Nick looked down at his feet, blushing. Ann and Jerald had three sons, but the youngest introduced himself as Kevin. The older two didn’t seem to be around.

“He can stay in my room.” Brian smiled brightly. As the day went, Nick felt more and more awkward. The Richardsons lived on a farm and owned horses, but Nick mostly sat on the porch reading.

“There’s something wrong with a boy that only wants to read. The other kids are playing football outside.” he heard Jerald say.

Nick didn’t like the comments everyone was making so he kept to himself.

On Christmas Eve Nick was feeling more lonely than ever, and he decided to stop hiding in his room…so he came out to spend time with the others.

“Well….hello there.” Ann said as he walked into the kitchen. She wasn’t anything like Jackie, this kitchen didn’t feel welcoming.

“I thought maybe you’d like some help.” he said timidly.

“Boys don’t belong in the kitchen. I don’t want anything ruined. You’ll just get in the way.” she snapped. Nick went to find the boys who were outside.

“Brian?” he called. They were hovering around a tractor that Jerald seemed to be fixing. Brian and Kevin weren’t anywhere to be found.

“Brian?” he called. They were hovering around a tractor that Jerald seemed to be fixing. Brian and Kevin weren’t anywhere to be found.

“I am telling you Harold. That boy is just a burden on your family…you can’t afford another mouth to feed. If it were me he’d be in an orphanage. There’s something wrong with him.” Jerald said.

“He is a lot to handle but he really needs a family right now. If you’d just get to know him…” Brian’s father replied.

“He won’t be our family, I can tell you that right now. Why can’t he be more like Brian? Brian’s a good kid. This one seems like nothing but trouble.”

“Nick is fine the way he is, we only took him in because Brian wanted us to.” Harold said. The two men looked up to see Nick standing there, tears swimming in his eyes. Harold looked horrified, but Jerald had no emotion as Nick turned and ran for the barn, somewhere he’d been hiding.

“Nobody will ever accept or love you…” he heard his mother’s voice tell him as he fell into the hay in the barn and cried. He wanted nothing more to disappear….to make sure he’d never be a burden to anyone again.

His mother was right.

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