Read it here, and check out the excerpt below:
Three weeks later, I find myself in front of a modest clapboard house, my stomach churning with nerves. Vee’s parents. And her brother, but mostly, it’s her parents that worry me. I know I’m not their age, not quite, but I’m closer to their age than to their daughter’s. If it had been my mom, she would have tsked at me and asked why I couldn’t find someone a little older. She would have done it gently, but still…
“Ready?” Vee asks, practically bouncing on her toes. Her nose is red in the chill breeze. The snow out here in New Jersey is cleaner than in the city; there’s an expanse of pristine whiteness on the front lawn, marred only by the sidewalk down one side, leading to the front door. She takes my hand and we head towards the house. I’ve worn my nicer knee-high black boots, but I’m sliding on the cement, thanks to their lack of grip on the thin soles. I clutch at Vee, and she steadies me. Rarely have I been so glad of her wearing sensible combat boots.
We make it to the door without falling, and Vee doesn’t wait on ceremony. She yanks open the metal screen door and twists the knob of the heavier inner door, pushing inside.
“Mom! We’re here!” she calls, slinging her backpack from her shoulder to the linoleum floor. I press in behind her and close the doors, pausing to sniff the cinnamon-scented air. My stomach grumbles. I haven’t eaten much all day; I’ve been too nervous.