Chapter 11 - Fame

"Guess what guys! Guess what!" Zac screamed, running into the living room where Isaac was helping Taylor with a math assignment.

"We’re going to film a video for "MMMBop" and be on the Jenny McCarthy show!"

"Huh?" Taylor looked up, his mind clogged with visions of algebraic equations.

"We’re going back to California to film a video and we were invited to sing "MMMBop" on the Jenny McCarthy Show," Zac squealed with excitement.

"Who? Isn’t she on that dating show?" Taylor asked. "Do we get to try to win a date with some girl?"

"No stupid. She’s not on that show anymore. She has her own show now and we’re going to be on it," Zac rolled his eyes, not believing his brothers lack of MTV knowledge.

After letting the announcement sink into their heads and receiving a confirmation from their father that yes Zac was telling the truth, Taylor and Isaac soon joined into the youngest band members excitement.

"NO! I won’t wear it! It’s hideous!" Taylor exclaimed, five days later, looking at the grey sweater with the large red stripe around the chest. The stylist, hired by Mercury records for the boys, just looked at him bewildered.

"What’s wrong with it?" she asked.

"It’s ugly, that’s what wrong with it!" he shouted back.

"Taylor!" his mother warned. "Just put the sweater on. Your brothers aren’t having any problems with their outfits."

"That’s because they got to wear cool clothes," Taylor said, but reluctantly pulled on the very tight sweater. Looking at himself in the mirror, he made a disgusted face and grumbled, "Boy I hope I can breath in this. At least I can wear my own pants."

"Okay, why don’t you three boys line up, let me take a look at you," the stylist suggested.

Taylor leaned over to Isaac and whispered, "Who hired her anyway? What was wrong with what we were wearing?"

Isaac just shrugged his shoulders.

The stylist stood in front and eyed each boy from top to bottom. Deep in thought, she chewed her bottom lip and placed her right hand under her chin.


She crouched down in front of Isaac and proceeded to roll his jeans into huge cuffs. He personally thought it looked stupid, but didn’t want to make a scene like Taylor had done.

She then brought a second shirt over to Zac and tied it around his waist.

"Ummm, excuse me, uhh, what’s your name again?" Zac asked.

"Mary," the stylist answered.

"Mary," Zac began in his most mature voice. "Do you think the second shirt is really necessary? I mean, I’m feeling a little bulky here. I think one was just fine."

"Trust me," she smiled. "You look great. This second shirt completes the outfit."

"But..." Zac began.

"Zachary! Just wear it!" Mrs. Hanson said exasperated. She could not believe her sons were giving the poor young lady such a hard time.

Mary quickly gave them one more look and stated, "Okay, you guys are ready to go out there. Good luck."

"Thanks," three voices grumbled as they left the dressing room.

On the flight home, Taylor would not shut up about the hideous sweater or about how lucky Zac was to have Jenny McCarthy practically tackle him to the ground. Taylor and Zac continued their pointless bantering back and forth about being on T.V. and making a video, but Isaac was in his own world. He had not seen Juliet in over a week and could not wait to get home to her.

Isaac sat impatiently on the back porch of Juliet’s aunt’s house. She was out of town for the weekend and he knew that Juliet would come over any minute to let the dog out and water the plants. He fiddled with a twig and tapped his feet against the step. Finally, he spotted Juliet riding her bike up the street. He wanted to leap up, run and grab her off the bike, but figured that may not be the best idea.

She turned into the driveway, leaned her bike against the garage, and walked over to Isaac with a huge smile spread across her face.

"Hey, I’m glad you’re back," she embraced him and lightly pecked his cheek. "Want to come in for a while?" she asked reaching for her keys.

"Yeah, he replied, glancing around, hoping no one had seen their exchange.

Juliet unlocked the door and shut it behind them. She let the dog out into the back yard and then filled it’s dishes with food and water.

Finally Isaac couldn’t take it anymore. As soon as Juliet stood up from placing the dishes on the ground, he grabbed her shoulders and backed her up against a wall.

"I missed you," he whispered and pressed his lips deeply against hers. Juliet wrapped her arms around his neck and returned his kiss. Just as the kisses started to get heavier, they were interrupted by the ringing phone.

Juliet saw the cordless phone cradle was empty, so she went into the living room to use the phone on the end table next to the couch. Isaac sat next to her and proceeded to play with her hair and kiss the back of her neck, while Juliet attempted to hold a conversation with the caller.

"Yes Mom, I’m here, you’re talking to me aren’t you? Yes the dog is out. Yes I gave him the dry food this time. Don’t worry I won’t forget to pick up milk from the store. Okay......yeah........all right, bye mom." Juliet slammed the phone down and turned to face Isaac. "That was my....." but before she could say mom, Isaac had his lips against hers again.

She ran her hands down the front of his shirt, and slowly started to unfasten the top few buttons. She kissed the newly exposed area of skin and gently pushed him down so that she was laying on top of him. It wasn’t long before Isaac’s shirt was tossed to the floor.

Isaac ran his hands up and down Juliet’s back. After a few moments, he slowly grabbed the bottom of her sweater and began to pull it up. Juliet slightly raised her arms, allowing him to pull it over her head. Juliet kissed Isaac’s chest and shoulders. She worked her way back up to his mouth. As she kissed him again, he sat up and began to maneuver so that in the end he was laying on top of her.

Their breathing quickened, as they kissed passionately. Isaac’s hands moved from her chest to her jeans. He ran his left hand along the inside of her thigh, while trying to undo the button of her jeans. After managing to unfasten the button, he slowly started to pull on her zipper.

"Whoa, Isaac.....whoa," Juliet managed to gasp out.

"Shh, just relax," he whispered, not wanting to stop any time soon.

Juliet breathed deeply and began to kiss him again. Isaac managed to get her zipper the rest of the way down, and tugged on her jeans with both his hands.

"No, I don’t think so slick," she forcefully said and pushed him off of her.

"He sat up with a look of disgust and said, "What’s the problem?"

"Uhh the problem is we aren’t even going out, so I don’t think so!"

"Come on, don’t be like this," he muttered and tried to kiss her again.

"Isaac I’m serious!" she said, pushing him away and putting her sweater back on.

Isaac, at a loss for words, just looked at her and pouted.

"Come on," she said laughing and tossed his shirt at him. "I’m going to go let the dog in."

He pulled his shirt on and began fastening the buttons. "Yep, good idea. That’s exactly what I was thinking, let the dog in. Because you know what we were doing was so boring," he lamented.

"Yeah, well, I have to get home anyway, you big baby. Oh by the way, Taylor invited me to his birthday party." Juliet held out her hands and helped Isaac off the couch.

"Are you going to come?" he asked.

"Yeah, I was thinking about it."

I don’t know if that’s such a good idea."

"Why not?" she gave him a curious look.

"Well, because I don’t know if I’ll be able to keep my hands off of you, " he said grabbing her, and burying his face in her neck, lightly kissing her.

"Ha-ha," she said and shoved him towards the back door. You had better go. My mom’s probably getting ticked that it’s taking me so long to let out the dog and get her milk."

Ike, hey Ike! Where were you?" Taylor asked, following his brother up the stairs.

"Leave me alone. I need to take a shower."

Taylor glanced at his watch. "But Ike, it’s 5:30. Why bother taking one in the middle of the evening? Why not just wait until bed time or the morning?"

Isaac went into the bathroom, slamming the door in Taylor’s face.

"Well, I did it." Taylor continued to talk to the bathroom door. "I invited Juliet to my party. Aren’t you proud of me? I actually called her and asked her to come."

"Yeah, whatever, that’s great," Isaac mumbled and turned on the cold water.


Chapter 12 - The Party

"Meredith, what do you want? I’m going to see you in a few hours. Can’t it wait?" Taylor grumbled into the phone.

"My mom somehow tricked me into spending the day with my stupid cousin, Gretchen, even though I told her I was going to your party. She seems to think that your family wouldn’t mind if I had a guest tag along with me. The only problem is that, she’s a pain. She’s the biggest tomboy. She always has her hair in a ponytail and she never wears makeup. She’s never even had a boyfriend. She’s a big loser and if she comes I’m afraid she’s just going to hang on me the whole time and we won’t be able to be alone at all!" Meredith whined.

"Oh, well you know she is your cousin. I’ve always been taught that family comes first no matter what, so I insist that you bring Gretchen along. In fact I would totally understand if you had to hang out with her the whole time," Taylor put a lot of emphasis on the word "whole". "Well, look I gotta go get ready, so..... oh, and if your cousin doesn’t want to come and you can’t make it don’t worry. No hard feelings."

With that Taylor hung up the phone. He couldn’t believe his luck---Juliet was coming and Meredith didn’t think she would be able to spend any time with him. Things were looking up.

A few hours later the party was in full swing, and Taylor thought he would die of embarrassment if his mom brought out one more stupid party game. She had already tried to get the good times rolling with an ever exciting game of musical chairs, complete with Hanson music, and everyone’s favorite---pin the tail on the donkey. Now she was attempting to get the crowd involved in charades.

"Mom," Taylor pulled Mrs. Hanson aside. "What do you think you’re doing? We’re teenagers, we don’t want to play any of these stupid baby games!"

"Well honey, I had to do something that the little ones would enjoy also."

"Okay, well, why don’t you put them to bed now. It is getting kind of late," Taylor pointed out.

Mrs. Hanson glanced at her watch. It read 4:36 p.m. "Fine, I’ll let you older kids go to the rec room, and have the little ones play the games out here," Mrs. Hanson said getting the hint. "Why don’t you open your gifts first though."


Taylor began to unwrap the first package. He looked at the mini recorder in his hands, slightly confused.

"I’m sick of always having to find a piece of paper, a notebook, or pencils for you. Now you can just talk into that whenever you have a song idea," Isaac explained.

"Cool, thanks!"

"Open mine next!" Zac yelled and threw a box wrapped in old newspaper at Taylor.

Inside Taylor found a light orange, button down shirt.

"I wanted to get it for myself, but I only had enough money to get you a gift. I figured I can just borrow it anytime anyway," Zac gleefully exclaimed.

"Thanks Zac. It’s so nice to know that you’re always thinking about me," Taylor sarcastically exclaimed.

After opening a few CD’s, movies, and books, Taylor got to the package he was dreading---Meredith’s gift. He slowly unwrapped the Loony Tunes paper and opened the small box. Inside he found the most horrid, ugly gold ID bracelet he had ever laid eyes on. His name was engraved on the front.

"Flip it over and read the back," Meredith happily instructed.

"Love Meredith," Taylor regretted not reading it before he spoke the words aloud. While the room was filled with exclamations of "ahhh" and "how sweet", Taylor thought he was going to puke up the birthday cake he had eaten. He quickly threw the bracelet aside and moved on to the next gift.

Finally after all the presents were opened, including the very embarresing gift of underwear from his Aunt, and everyone had had their fill of Coke and ice cream, the older teens re-treated to the downstaris rec room. There they flipped on the stereo and debated about what to do.

"We could play Truth or Dare," one of Taylor’s soccer teammates suggested.

This was met by groans and gagging sounds.

"Well it was just an idea."

Taylor caught himself staring at Juliet a number of times and had to remind himself that he was being just a tad bit obvious.

"How about.......spin the bottle?"

This idea got few arguments, and soon they were all gathered around in a circle. Since it was Taylor’s birthday, they decided he was the lucky one who got to start the game off. As the empty Coke bottle spun around and around, Taylor chanted ‘Juliet, Juliet, Juliet,’ in his head. The bottle began to slow, and it finally came to a rest with the mouthpiece pointing at........Isaac.

"Uhhh, I think I need to spin that one again," Taylor said and gave it another try.

This time the bottle stopped pointing at non other than Juliet. Taylor couldn’t believe his luck. He got up and met her in the middle of the circle. Just as he was working up the courage to kiss her on the lips, Juliet quickly pecked his cheek, and sat back down. Taylor frowned and returned to his seat, very unsastified.

The game continued in this fashion for a while with no one giving more that a tiny peck, save for Meredith’s cousin who said she refused to kiss anyone with a group of people watching. She had sat on the couch and watched.

Finally, sick of the way the game was headed, espically since on each of her turns, the bottle had never once pointed to Taylor, Meredith spoke up.

"I have an idea. Has anyone here played Seven Minutes in Heaven?"

Everyone just sort of looked at each other, with no one speaking up.

"Okay, here’s the deal. All the guys write their name on a slip of paper, fold it, and put them into somthing, like a bowl or hat. Then the girls pick one slip of paper and each couple gets a turn in the closet. The most anyone can be in there is seven minutes and whoever makes it that long wins. BUT, you have to be kissing. You can’t just stand there and talk or look at one another."

After a quick vote, everyone agreed to this game. Taylor ran and grabbed some paper and pens, double checked to see if the rec room door was locked, and handed out the paper. Jared Hayes, one of Taylor’s soccer teammates, relinquished his hat as the "bowl" and everyone threw their name inside. Since it was Meredith’s idea, everyone agreed that she should go first. Taylor prayed she would get anyone but him, and secrectly hoped she got Isaac. That way, it would be payback for Isaac telling Meredith about the party.

Meredith reached into the hat, smiling, but her face fell as she flatly read, "Adam" aloud. They were in and out of the closet before the second minute had elapsed.

A few more couples went in, with the longest lasting three minutes.

"Gretchen, it’s your turn. Pick a name," Meredith insturucted her cousin.

"I don’t think........" Gretchen began to protest.

"Gretchen, no one is going to see you. Stop acting like a baby!" Meredith ordered.

Gretchen sighed, reached into Jared’s hat, and drew a slip of paper.

"Taylor," she read flatly.

Taylor’s heart sank when he realized that his seven minutes would not be spent with Juliet. However this was his party and he was determined to win this game, no matter who he went into that closet with. He approached Gretchen and grabbed her hand. He had to practically drag her to the closet, and closed the door behind him.

****Taylor scrutinized her. She looked nothing like her blond cousin. Her round face was rather plain, and it looked even rounder with her straight, brown hair pulled into a sloppy ponytail. She wore a simple white Dallas Maverick’s tee-shirt and a pair of baggy overalls.

"Are you ready?" Taylor questioned.

"Whatever," she shrugged her shoulders.

Taylor stepped closer to her and put his hand behind her neck, drawing her face towards him. He was about to kiss her when he swore he felt her shaking.

"Is something wrong?" he asked.

She looked at the boots, lined in a row on the closet floor and whispered, "I’ve never kissed anyone before."

"Well, there’s no time like the present," Taylor said, lifting her chin. He gave her a gentle kiss.

After a few more soft pecks, Taylor figured that she’d had enough time to get over her initial shyness and decided it was time to get down to buisness. He kissed her lips longer, and tried to get her to respond.

Gretchen didn’t seem to catch on. In fact, her lips weren’t even moving. Taylor pulled away and looked at her.

"Open your mouth," he whispered.

She shot him a look of horror. "What for?"

" me. You have to. You’ll like it," he tried to reassure her.

Gretchen allowed her lips to part ever so slightly. With each kiss, Taylor tried to get her to open up just a tad more. Finally he was able to get his tounge in her mouth when she hauled off and slapped him across the face.

"Pervert!" she yelled, and stormed out of the closet.
Taylor stood there in shock with his hand pressed against his smarting cheek. He walked out of the closet shaking his head. "I can’t believe she did that," he muttered.

Everyone was laughing as he sat down, arms crossed over his chest. He attempted to act as if nothing had happened.

"Well, at least you guys are in the lead so far, four and a half minutes," Jared tried to cheer him up.

Taylor however, was still in shock that a girl would not want to kiss him.

Juliet stepped to the hat and drew out her slip of paper. Taylor nearly fell off the sofa when she announced that she had drawn Isaac’s name. Taylor wanted to kill his brother, as he watched the closet door shut behind Juliet.

"We have to beat everyone," Juliet whispered, and kissed Isaac’s neck, softly.

"That shouldn’t be too hard," he breathed and pulled her against him.

They wasted no time getting down to buisness. Juliet felt Isaac’s hand go up her shirt. They leaned back against the wall. Isaac ran his other hand down her body, resting it on the exposed area of her thigh where her short, pleated plaid skirt stopped. He ran his tounge down her neck, and began to slide his hand up her skirt. His other hand left her breasts and moved under her skirt when......

"What are you two doing in there? Your seven minutes were up a while ago." Taylor did not sound very happy as he pounded on the closet door.

Everyone gathered around to see the winners emerge. Taylor glared at Isaac and walked away from the crowd.

"So what was going on in there?" Meredith asked.

"Uhh, that’s none of your buisness," Juliet replied.

Isaac walked over to a furious looking Taylor.

"Hey, I just wanted to let you know that we really didn’t do anything. I just told her that I couldn’t lose to my 14 year old brother. We basically cheated, because we just stood there."

"You didn’t kiss her at all?" Taylor glared at his brother suspicically, looking for any indications of action.

"God Taylor she’s 14! No I didn’t kiss her. But what in the world did you try to do to that girl in the overalls, what’s her name.....Gretchen?" Isaac tried to steer the conversation away from himself.

"Nothing that’s just it! I tried to kiss her and she hit me!" Taylor shook his head. "Sometimes, I just don’t get girls."

Isaac laughed. "You and me both pal!"


Chapter 13 - Of Firsts and Orbit?

"Stop...just stop a minute."

Juliet pushed Isaac off of her and sat up on her bed. She grabbed her shirt, which had been discarded onto the floor and pulled it over her head. She drew her knees up to her chest and sat hugging her legs. Isaac leaned against the wall and just looked at her, confused. They were alone at Juliet’s house. Her parents and brothers were at a school meeting for parents and members of the football team.

"Why don’t we do anything else?" Juliet glanced at Isaac, her eyes wet.

"What do you mean?" Isaac wasn’t quite sure what she was getting at. He knew she couldn’t be talking about sex, because as many times as he had tried, she wouldn’t give in.

"We never go anywhere. All we do is sneak somewhere and make out. Why don’t you take me places?"

"You know why. How many times are we going to have this discussion? We can’t because of...."

"Taylor, I know! That’s the same bs excuse you use every time! I’m sick of it. Be a man! Tell him about us!"

Isaac glared at Juliet. He got off the bed and angrily grabbed his shirt. After hastily throwing it on, he grabbed one of his Airwalks and began to put it on.

"You know...." he stopped fussing with his shoe and looked back at Juliet. "You don’t quiet seem to understand the relationship I have with Taylor. He is my best friend."

"Isaac, he’s fourteen. He isn’t in love with me or anything. I’m sure he’d get over it if you told him. You telling him is better than him finding out from someone else. Besides, I don’t think that’s the only reason you are so desperate to keep our relationship a secret."

"Oh really? Well, enlightened one, please, do tell me the other reason, because I would really like to hear this!" Isaac snapped.

"I think you’re embarrassed by me!"


"You’re embarrassed to be seen with me. You think that just because you made a CD in California, and you have all these T.V. shows that want you to perform, and all these people just think that you guys are so great, that if you were seen in public with a stupid fourteen year old girl, people would make fun of you. You think I’m not good enough for you!" Juliet burst into tears. "That’s not fair Isaac! It isn’t fair!"

Isaac couldn’t’ believe what Juliet was saying. He had never heard anything more absurd in his whole life.

"Hey......hey," he said quietly. He reached for Juliet and tried to put his arms around her.

"GET OUT!" she screamed.

"Juliet, please listen to me. I would never be embarrassed to be seen with you. I think you’re beautiful. I would be proud to say that you’re my girlfriend. I can’t believe you would even think anything like that!"

"I don’t believe you! You’re a liar! If you wanted to be with me that badly and weren’t embarrassed by me, then you would say ‘screw it. I want to be with her and nothing is going to stop me!’ That’s what you’d say! I’ve waited and I’ve waited. I prayed that one day you would say, ‘hey let’s go out somewhere. I want everyone to know that I’m with you.’ but you never do! And to think, I was going to sleep with you!" A fresh set of tears rolled down Juliet’s cheeks.

This statement nearly knocked Isaac over. Did she just say sleep with me? He didn’t know quite how to respond, so he said the first thing that came to his mind.

"You were going to sleep with me?"

Juliet glanced up and gave him a disgusted look.

"Is that all you can think about? My God, you really are shallow. I don’t know how I could have been so blind. It hurts a lot, you know? I just wanted this so much. I mean I really tried to kid myself into believing that you cared about me."

"Juliet, I do care about you! I care about you so much it hurts. I hate that it has to be like this. I’m sorry, I’m really sorry. Look, I want to be with you more than anything. I really do. Just give me some time. I need to tell Taylor in my own way. Listen, we’re going back to New York to film Oddville this week. I’ll tell him as soon as we come back, okay? I promise. Please don’t be mad at me. I....I can’t live with myself if I know that when I leave you’re going to hate me," he felt himself choke up and a tear slid down his smooth cheek.

Juliet gently brushed away the tear with her fingers. Isaac leaned over and grabbed onto her, holding her tight. She hugged him back, and lightly ran her fingertips up and down his back. He turned his face into her neck and began to lightly kiss her. He moved up her neck and kissed her sweetly on the lips. He started to pull away, but was surprised when Juliet held him tighter and pulled him down on top of her. They laid back on the bed still kissing. Isaac tugged at her shirt and once again it was deposited onto the bedroom floor. His hands roamed all over her body, feeling every inch of her skin. He slid her bra strap down, and kissed her bare shoulder. She let his hands work their way down to the button on her jean shorts, and didn’t protest as she had so many times before when he had tried this. Isaac’s tongue traced it’s way down her body to her stomach. Juliet pulled his shirt off and threw it on the floor next to hers.

"Isaac," she breathed.

Isaac moved up and stared into her soft brown eyes. It was then, seeing the look he gave her, one of love, desperation and lust, that she knew it was the right time. Her hands reached down and began to undo his pants. He gently grabbed her hands and held them tight.

"Is this what you want?" He prayed that she would say yes.

Juliet got a thoughtful look on her face and then without saying a word, proceeded to kiss him and pulled her hands from his grasp. She once again began to undo his pants. He kissed her almost desperately. Neither of them had experienced feelings like this before. Juliet’s shorts were soon on the ground next to her shirt, with Isaac’s pants following closely behind.

"Isaac," Juliet whispered as he fumbled with her bra clasp. "Do you have a condom or anything?"


"Uh oh......oh wait! I know my older brothers have some. Just let me run and get them."

"No. I don’t want you to go. Not now," he breathed into her ear.

"Isaac, I really want to do this but I’m not going to be stupid about it, and neither are you. I’ll be back in a minute.

Taylor leafed through the new issue of Rolling Stone, trying to find the article on Gwen Stefani when he felt a tap on his shoulder. He turned and found himself looking into a familiar face.

"Oh, hey," he said and returned to the magazine.

"Listen I’m sorry about hitting you at your birthday party, ok? I just wanted to tell you that," Gretchen said.

"It’s fine," Taylor replied without glancing up from the magazine.

"Well the upside is that Meredith is no longer speaking to me."

Taylor laughed and set the magazine down. "I wish I could say the same. She calls me almost everyday."

Gretchen snickered. "Too bad for you."

"So what are you doing in here?" Taylor asked.

"I just came to see if they had any Orbit."

"Orbit!" Taylor almost screamed. "I thought I was the only one in the world who drank that. I can show you where they are."

Gretchen just gave him a puzzled look. Something in that look got to Taylor. Gretchen wasn’t pretty, cute at best. She still had a lot of her baby fat, and was dressed in a black Detroit Red Wings tee shirt and baggy blue jeans. She defiantly wasn’t the sort of girl he normally liked, the complete opposite in fact, but they way she stared at him, one eyebrow raised, her lips pursed, a few strands of fly away hair escaped from the sloppy ponytail that blew every time the store fan hit them, was driving him crazy.

"Okay," Gretchen said slowly, breaking into Taylor’s thoughts. "Or you could just tell me, I don’t need an escort."

"Well, why don’t I just show you. I mean I have nothing better to do." Taylor gently grabbed her elbow and led her across the store.

"I don’t know what you’re getting so upset about!"

"Uhh, I don’t know....maybe because you were letting some ditzy blond, playboy model, put her lips all over your face!" Marie yelled at Zac.

The two of them had just finished watching Mr. Hanson’s copy of the groups performance on the Jenny McCarthy show.

"She was just doing it for the cameras. I mean jeez, she’s old enough to be my mom!" Zac had no clue why Marie was acting like this. "This is so stupid I’m not even going to talk about it anymore!" Zac sat and folded his arms across his chest.

"Fine then!" Marie sat next to him and folded her arms also.

"Fine!" Zac yelled in return.

They sat in silence for a moment. wanna go play Top Gear?" Zac questioned.

Marie contemplated that.

"Yeah, sure," she replied cheerfully.

Zac just shook his head. He didn’t think he’d ever understand this whole girl thing.

Isaac slowly opened his eyes and looked around the light green bedroom, a little confused about where he was. Suddenly he felt something roll over and throw it’s arm across his chest and everything came together in his mind.

I’m in Juliet’s room. I just had sex. Whoa. That is so cool.

He glanced at his watch.


Isaac sat there for a moment.

"Five o’clock? Oh my God!!! It’s five o’ clock. Her parents are going to be home any minute! I have to be home for dinner in half an hour!"

Isaac bolted upright, jumped out of the bed, and began scavenging the room for his clothes.

"What time is it?" he heard Juliet mumble."

"Ten after five"

"Oh my God!" She sat up. "My parents are going to be home! You have to get out of here!"

"Can’t you see I’m trying," Isaac shouted, frantically pulling on his pants.

Juliet jumped up. "Oh my God!" She collapsed on the bed again.

"Now what?" Isaac spotted his shirt and threw it on.

"I am so sore," Juliet moaned.

Isaac was now halfway under her bed retrieving one of his shoes. "Why?"

"Oh I don’t know........maybe because I was a virgin. We tend to get the bad end of the bargain with the whole "First time" thing." Juliet rolled her eyes.

"Well," Isaac rolled out from under the bed and looked up at her. "Was it okay? Did you like it?"

"Oh......ummm......well you know," she paused. "They say it always gets better after the first time."

Isaac’s face fell. "Sorry," he quietly mumbled, while tying his shoes.

"What am I going to do about this mess!" Juliet suddenly shrieked.

"What mess?"

"Look at the bed. There’s blood in it!" Juliet rushed over to her dresser and hastily pulled on a sweatshirt and a pair of warm up pants.

"Oh man.......that’s disgusting," Isaac stated, looking at the mess on the sheets.

"Well don’t just stand there, help me get them off," Juliet commanded. "If my mom sees this what am I going to say to her!"

"Uhhh," Isaac stood there dumbfounded.
"Never mind, just help me. They’re going to be back any minute."

They tore the sheets and pillow cases off the bed. Juliet rolled them into a large ball and threw them under the bed.

"Great it went through the sheets to the mattress. Quick help me flip it over."

Isaac grabbed one end of the mattress and lifted it into the air. They heaved the mattress up and over, throwing Juliet’s quilt on top when they were done.

"Okay, I have to get out of here," Isaac started out the door, but turned back and walked over to Juliet. He embraced her, kissed the top of her head and whispered," Thanks. You’re an amazing person." He then left, and raced to get home.


Chapter 14 - Adventures in a Car

"Don’t be long boys, it’s cake and present time soon."

"We won’t dad," Isaac stated, exasperated, as he started the car engine and pulled out of the long, gravel driveway.

"Thank God we got out of there. I swear if one more little brat ran into me or pulled my tail, I was going to have to kill someone! What, is it like a rule that all of the women in our family have to have about a million kids? Man, to think I thought it was bad at our house," Taylor lamented.

The Hanson’s had been at their aunt and uncle’s house since 8:00 a.m. in order to celebrate the baptism of their baby cousin, Keaton. Relatives from all over Oklahoma had shown up for the occasion.

"You know, I don’t think we even know half the people there. Who was that bald guy who kept calling me sonny, and having me "fetch" more chairs or bring in even more presents? Geez, the kid isn’t even a year old yet and he already owns the whole selection of Toys ‘R’ Us, and I think he’s working on KayBee’s," Isaac added.

"That guy is from mom’s side of the family, I think. You know those three snotty girls who think they are so above us that they couldn’t’ even bother to tell us their names? He’s their dad. Rumor has it that his wife is pregnant again, so there will be yet another addition to the snob clan."

"There’s always a women pregnant in our family," Isaac joked.

"Yea," Taylor agreed. "It’s usually mom!"

A few miles down the road, bored of looking out the window at fields, Taylor ventured a question. "Hey Ike, why don’t you let me try driving for a little bit."

Isaac glanced around. Seeing as how their relatives lived in the middle of Amish country on a farm, there was not another soul on the road. On either side of them was corn fields, so Isaac didn’t see what harm it could possibly do, letting Taylor take over for a few minutes. He pulled over, agreeing to let his younger brother take the wheel.

"Okay Tay, just put the car in drive and lightly step on the gas," Isaac began the instructions.

Taylor dropped the car into gear and stamped his foot onto the gas pedal. The tires spun, doing nothing more than spit gravel up from the side of the road.

"Whoa, gentle. Be gentle with it. Lightly on the gas, " Isaac exclaimed.
Taylor gave it another go and after a few moments, they were cruising along comfortably at a mild pace.

"Don’t you dare tell dad I let you drive his car. And don’t tell Zac either, because you know it will be blabbed to everyone at the entire party in two seconds," Isaac warned.

"I won’t, I won’t," Taylor grumbled, trying to keep his concentration on the road.

Isaac flipped through radio stations, trying to find one which wasn’t’ playing Garth Brooks. He stopped when he heard a DJ announcing some new song, Isaac had missed the title because he was telling Taylor to stop weaving, by some local band. Suddenly the opening chords of a very familiar tune filled the car.

"IKE!" Taylor screamed, taking his hands off the wheel and turning up the radio. "It’s us! It’s us! That’s "MMMBop"!" Taylor continued with his hands in the air and his foot on the gas.

"Taylor! The car! The wheel!" Isaac screamed back.

Suddenly Taylor had no clue what to do. He just kept screaming as the car began to head in the direction of a corn field.
"The brake you idiot! Step on the brake!" Isaac yelled while trying to grab the wheel.

Taylor continued to scream, "That’s me! I’m singing! I’m on the radio!" Each time he yelled, his foot pressed harder on the gas, as if he was keeping time with the tune.

Isaac managed to grab the wheel, and maneuver onto the right side of the road, barely missing the first row of corn stalks.

"Stop the car NOW!" Isaac yelled at the top of his lungs. He flipped off the radio.

"Hey, why did you..." suddenly things started to click in Taylor’s mind. "Oh my God!" he yelled and slammed both feet on the brake pedal, sending himself and Isaac flying into the protective strap of their seat belts. For a moment they both sat stunned.

Slowly Isaac began to speak. "Get out...of the car.....NOW!"

Taylor reluctantly vacated his position in the driver’s seat and walked around to the passenger’s side, trying to hide a smile. After Isaac had been driving for a few minutes, Taylor spoke up.

"Hey, you know that was us on the radio." "I know Taylor!" Isaac snapped.

"That’s really cool, isn’t it? I mean that was us. We were singing "MMMBop". I wonder if everyone at the house heard. Aren’t’ you excited?"

"Well, I don’t know Taylor. Sometimes almost getting killed sort of spoils the mood," Isaac shouted.

"Oh Ike," Taylor blew Isaac’s comments off with a wave of his hand. "We were not almost killed. The worst that could of happened would be us rolling into a few ears of corn."

Isaac just shook his head and proceeded in the direction of their aunt and uncle’s house for cake and presents.

A few days after Taylor and Isaac’s near death experience, Isaac got a strange feeling. He stopped picking at his guitar and looked up. Taylor and Zac were seated opposite him on Taylor’s bed, staring at him intently.

"What? Stop staring at me, it’s starting to make me nervous."

Taylor raised an eyebrow and gave Isaac a stern look.

"Something’s going on with you. Me and Zac have been discussing your behavior the past few weeks and have decided that it’s about time you tell us what’s up"

Isaac just sighed and resumed plunking away at random notes.

"COME ON IKE! Don’t leave us in the dark! We beg of you! Just tell us where you’ve been going everyday." Zac pleaded with his oldest brother.

"Zac..." Isaac began.
"Yeah, you leave everyday. You always say you’re going to the library or to a friends house but we know you’re lying," Taylor interrupted.

"How do you know? I have been going to the library. And I do have other friends besides you guys. As impossible as that seems, I do have a life outside of this family and our band!" Isaac snapped.

"Hey, don’t get testy about it, We’re just sort of worried," Taylor quietly stated. "You never used to be like this."

"Like what?" Isaac asked disgustedly.

"So secretive. I mean, you act like you can’t tell us anything anymore. Why?"

"Taylor, I just have some things that I like to do ALONE! Is that okay with you? Do I have to tell you guys everything I do?"

"Fine!" Zac yelled. "Don’t tell us! We’ll find out what you’ve been up to! You think we won’t! Well think again Mr. Secret Secret Secret, because you are WRONG WRONG WRONG!"

Zac got off of Taylor’s bed and ran out of the room. Taylor shot Isaac a dirty look.

"Good job, Ike. Are you happy now?" Taylor got up and went out of the room in search of Zac.

Isaac just shook his head. He tried to concentrate on his guitar, but it was impossible. He just couldn’t stop the feelings of guilt washing over him. He groaned, set his guitar on the bed and got up. Contemplating whether to go after Zac, he decided to let Taylor handle it. Absently he twirled a piece of his wavy hair in his fingers. He felt horrible lying to his brothers. They were his best friends after all, but he didn’t understand why they couldn’t see that he was sixteen now. At some point they had to of known that he would find things other than them and music to occupy his interest all day long. He could hear Taylor talking to Zac in the bathroom, and changing his mind, went to apologize for blowing up at them.

"Guys," Isaac opened the bathroom door. "Can I come in?"

"Are you going to tell us what’s been going on?" Zac asked hopefully.

"No, I’m not because there is absolutely nothing to tell."

"Oh, Ike, we all know you’re lying through your teeth. Until you decide to tell us what’s been up, don’t bother talking to us," Taylor glared at his older brother.

"Fine I won’t then!" Isaac yelled and stormed out of the bathroom.

Isaac went into the kitchen, picked up the phone, and dialed Juliet's pager number. They had worked out a code for him to use whenever he wanted to see her, other than their official meeting times. He punched in 47 911, left a note for his dad, and took Mr. Hanson's car to the dead end street a block away from Juliet's house, and waited.

Twenty minutes later he heard a knocking on the car window, and lifted his head from where it had been resting in his hands on the steering wheel.

"Open the door!" Juliet said loudly.

Isaac reached over and unlocked the passenger side door.

"Thanks for coming," he quietly began after Juliet settled into the car. "I really need someone to talk to."

She nodded her head as Isaac started the car. They drove in silence to Chapin Forest which seldom had visitors this time of year. Isaac parked in a lot set apart from the rest of the park by huge trees, and turned off the car.

"Taylor knows something is up," Isaac began. "He’s not sure what, but I feel awful keeping things from him."

"So tell him," Juliet stated simply and moved closer to him.

"I’m going to but...." Isaac wanted to say more, but Juliet forcefully pressed her lips against his and was practically pulling him down on top of her. As Isaac kissed her back, he realized she was starting to take off his shirt.

"Juliet," Isaac whispered. "I really want to talk about this," he tried to sit up, but Juliet held him against her.

"Not now," she whispered into his ear and lightly kissed it. She sat up a little and took off her shirt, tossing it aside.

Isaac glanced around. Not a soul in sight. Seeing as how Juliet was obviously not in the mood for talking, Isaac quickly pushed his problems with Taylor and Zac out of his mind.

Their kisses became more passionate, and Isaac slid his hand down the side of the car seat, pulling the lever and reclining it. He rolled completely on top of Juliet.

"I brought protection," Juliet gasped into his ear.


Chapter 15 - Big Mistake

Even after Taylor’s threat of not speaking to him until he fessed up, he and Zac accepted Isaac’s lame apology. However there was still tension between the three brothers. It didn’t help that they were on the road again, this time to perform on Oddville MTV. None of the boys really wanted to do the show, they were completely exhausted having flown back and forth across the country what felt like a million times, and making what seemed like a billion T.V. appearances, but their managers and publicist all agreed that it was in the best interest of the band to accept MTV’s invitation. The arguments between Isaac, Taylor, and Zac had become more frequent, even over little things like who got to sit in the very back seat of the van or who got what bag of peanuts on the plane, even though they were all exactly the same. Mr. and Mrs. Hanson chalked up their sons arguments to fatigue and left them alone, save for the occasional warning of ‘Boys knock it off’.

After all the band had been going through in the past months since their sudden stardom, it really should come as no surprise that Isaac, Taylor, and Zac did what they did. It all started very innocent.

"I am so sick of hotels. I just want my own bed, in my own room, with my own pillows. Why are hotel pillows so sucky? They’re always too flat or too poofy. I hate them. I just...."

"Taylor, shut up! We get the point. We’re all tired and we all want to go home!" Isaac proceeded his statement by dropping his suitcase of the floor and throwing himself face first onto one of the queen sized beds in the room.

Taylor stuck his tongue out at Isaac’s back and headed into the bathroom.

"What’s this?" Zac questioned.

Isaac lifted his head and looked to where Zac was pointing.

"Mini bar, duh," he replied before he buried his face into the covers once again.

"Cool, these have candy and stuff in them don’t they?"

"Probably," Isaac’s voice was muffled by the covers.

"Let’s open it!"

"Open what?" Taylor said, stepping out of the bathroom.

"The mini bar."

"Cool, none of the other hotel rooms we’ve been in had one of these!" he tried to pull on the handle. "It won’t open."

"You need the key, stupid!" Isaac snapped.

Taylor crossed his arms and glanced around the room. He spied a piece of paper, a handful of wrapped mints and a set of small, silver keys on the table. He walked over, glanced at the "Welcome to the Rosemont Hotel" note on the paper, and proceeded to shove the mints and note out of the way and grabbed the small keys.

"I’ve got the keys, stupid!" he smirked and made another face at Isaac’s back.

"Open it then!" Zac yelled.

"Guys, don’t. You have to pay for everything you eat, and these kind of hotels charge about ten bucks per candy bar in the vending machines. Who knows what the stuff in there costs." Isaac suddenly sat up. "Wait a second...isn’t the show paying for all our hotel expenses?"

Taylor and Zac’s eyes lit up.

"You are so right oldest brother. Middle brother open this baby up!" Zac stated.

Taylor slipped one of the keys into the lock and opened the mini bar.

All three pair of eyes widened when they saw the selection of candy, chips, pop, and liquor in the small box of pleasures. Isaac scanned the miniature bottles of rum, vodka, whisky, and......

"Kaluha! I heard that this stuff is really good." Isaac took the tiny treasure out of the refrigerator.

Taylor grabbed the bottle out of his brother’s hand and read the label.

"It’s alcoholic, duh. You can’t drink it." He returned the Kaluha to it’s space in the bar.

"Oh yeah? Says who? You?" Isaac once again snatched the bottle. He knew that if Taylor didn’t want him to drink it then that was exactly what he was going to do. "Besides mom, dad, and the little ones crashed the minute they got into their room, so who’s gonna know?" He twisted the cap and held the bottle to his lips. He poured a small amount of the creamy liquid into his mouth. He let it sit a minute before swallowing. "That is pretty darn good." He quickly poured the rest of the contents into his mouth and gulped it down. "AHHH, good stuff." He tossed the empty bottle over his shoulder. "What else do we have in here?"

Taylor’s curiosity was peaked. "What did it taste like?"

Isaac spied another brown Kaluha bottle and grabbed it. He handed it to Taylor and said, "Here, find out for yourself."

Taylor took the bottle and carefully studied it.

"Just drink it ya wimp," Isaac laughed. "Look how small it is. It’s not going to kill you."

Not to be outdone by Isaac, Taylor twisted the cap and sucked down the whole bottle. He made a face and managed to choke out, "Yep, that is pretty good."

"What about me guys?" Zac whined. "Let me try some."

Isaac and Taylor looked at each other. Zac was munching a Snickers with a pleading look in his eyes. They shrugged.

"Okay, here. Try this." Taylor took a bottle of rum from the bar and handed it to Zac.

Zac opened it and put the bottle to his nose. "It stinks," he commented.

"Well you’re not supposed to smell it, you’re supposed to drink it." Isaac informed him as he took a taste from a miniature B-52.

Zac took a sip from the bottle and immediately began to spit out the horrid tasting concoction. "That is the grossest stuff I ever tasted in my life!"

"Just chug it," Taylor said helpfully as he grabbed a mini Mudslide.

Soon after sampling the contents of almost every bottle in the bar, the three boys were drunk as lords, hysterical, and acting like complete idiots.

Taylor and Isaac were attempting to calm down by sitting with their backs against the foot of one of the beds. Zac was laying on the balcony dropping candy wrappers, bottle caps, and just about anything else he could find that would fit through the metal bars, onto the sidewalk below. He was fighting a major case of the hiccups.

"You know Ike," Taylor slurred between laughing fits. "You have been acting like a complete jerk the past month or so. I mean, you’re getting up to asshole status in my book!"

Isaac tried to look hurt by Taylor’s comment, but only succeeded in snorting and going into another fit of hysterics.

"You want to know why? Do you? It’s sooo funny that you’re gonna laughs at me." He took his index finger and tried to poke Taylor in the arm, but missed and poked his cheek instead.

"You almost hit my eye!" Taylor chuckled and rubbed his cheek.

"Listen, listen to me know. Guess what I’ve been doing? This is so funny. I have been meaning to tell you this. You know Juliet? Know how I keep talking you out of asking her out? Wanna know why? I’ll tell you why....this is really good. Because I’ve been making out with her like everyday. And get this, this is the best part. You are gonna laugh. We’ve even been having sex! Isn’t that awesome! I Clarke Isaac Hanson am no longer a virgin. I’ve had sex. Isn’t that so cool! That’s why I don’t want you to ask her out, and why I’ve been so secret secret about everything!" Isaac laughed again. "Isn’t that funny Tay! Tay?" Isaac looked up.

Taylor had a look to kill on his face. He just stared at his older brother.

"Don’t you find that funny?" Isaac tried to laugh again but nothing came out.

"I can’t believe you." Taylor whispered. He tried to stand, but was dizzy and had to sit down again.

"Come on Tay. She never liked you, she told me so." Isaac tried to get his mouth to shut up, but he was drunk and nothing in his body seemed to be functioning right.

"YOU JERK!" Taylor suddenly screamed. He hauled off and hit Isaac as hard as he could, considering the condition he was in.

Isaac stared at Taylor wide eyed, and held his arm where Taylor had belted him.

"What’s your problem Taylor? My God, I’m only telling you this because....."


Isaac couldn’t believe what he was hearing. Taylor’s face was bright red and Isaac knew that the words were coming from Taylor’s mouth but it wasn’t’ Taylor’s voice. It was like a some demon had possessed his brother and was using it’s horrid sounding growl to represent Taylor’s screams.

Zac stumbled in from the balcony.

"What---hic---s going on in---hic---here?" He slurred.

Just then the hotel room door opened and there stood Mr. and Mrs. Hanson.

"Boys, what the hell is going on in here?" Mr. Hanson shouted. "You’re loud enough to wake the dead!"

He suddenly stood quiet and stared in disbelief at the scene before him. Taylor had grabbed Isaac by the front of his shirt and was babbling incoherent phrases in a rage. Isaac looked helpless in his brothers grasp, and Zac seemed to be having trouble standing. Mr. Hanson looked at all the empty liquor bottles on the floor and realized that his sons were dead drunk.

"Jesus Christ," he muttered. "Go back to our room with the little ones." He gave Mrs. Hanson a push, who obeyed simply because she was in shock and really didn’t want to witness what might possibly happen next.

Mr. Hanson walked over to Taylor and Isaac. He took Taylor’s hands and forced his sons grip off his older brother. He pushed Taylor onto the bed in a sitting position and led Isaac to the other bed. He then went over to Zac who looked like he was about to cry.

"Dad," he whimpered. "I think I’m going to be sick." He held his hand up to his mouth.

Mr. Hanson grabbed him and swiftly carried him into the bathroom, where he held Zac’s head as he threw up. After Zac had emptied the entire contents of his stomach into the porcelain bowl, Mr. Hanson wet a washcloth with cool water and carried Zac into the room. He gently laid him on the bed where Isaac was sitting and wiped Zac’s face with the damp cloth. Zac curled into a ball and passed out. Mr. Hanson gently stroked his sons forehead and sighed.

"Dad...." Isaac began.

"Don’t even talk to me. Just don’t even think about it. I am so furious that if I hear either of you speak, I may kill you. I don’t want to hear your explanation. I want you two to go to sleep. I will deal with all of you in the morning."

Mr. Hanson stood, picked up the sleeping Zac, and carried him out of the room, slamming the door behind him.

Isaac looked at Taylor. Both had sobered considerably since their father had burst in.

"Shit," Isaac whispered.

Taylor just glared at him. He lay down on the bed, trying to push down the waves of nausea threatening in the back of his throat. He tried to sleep, but the thoughts of what Isaac had confessed to him, kept him from resting. Suddenly he knew the inevitable was going to happen and he rushed into the bathroom and allowed everything to come up. When he was sure he was done, he ran some tap water and splashed it on his face. He brushed his teeth and took off his tee shirt and jeans. He left the bathroom, not even bothering to search his suitcase for the sweatpants he had brought to sleep in. Isaac was asleep on the other bed. Taylor pulled the covers back and slipped in between the cool sheets. He felt miserable. Eventually he fell into a restless sleep.

It was seven in the morning when Isaac answered the ringing phone.

" 'Lo?" he grumbled.

"Isaac, it’s time for you and Taylor to get up. I expect you to be dressed and ready to go in an hour," Mr. Hanson sternly said.

"Kay," Isaac mumbled into the phone and slammed it into the cradle. He rolled over and stared at the ceiling, suffering from one of the worst headaches he had ever had in his whole life.

"Taylor," he mumbled. Noticing no movement from the other bed he yelled a little louder. "Taylor! You have to get up." Still no movement from Taylor’s side of the room.

Isaac slowly crawled out of bed and made his way over to his brother. He pulled down the comforter and gave Taylor a shove. "Get up!"

Isaac stumbled into the bathroom and looked at his reflection in the mirror. Never before had he seen himself look so horrible. His eyes were bloodshot and had huge bags under them. From the main room he heard Taylor moan, "I think I’m gonna die."

Not wanting to listen to his brothers moaning, Isaac stepped into the shower.

Taylor sat up in bed, clutching his stomach and trying to fight back tears. He was too ashamed to call one of his parents, but could not think of another option. He picked up the phone, but pain shot like a bolt though his head. He dropped the receiver and began to cry, bringing his knees up to his chest and rolling onto his side. He was feeling so sick and miserable that he didn’t notice the sound of a key in the door.

Suddenly Taylor felt someone’s arms wrap around him and looked up to see a blurry vision of his father. Taylor grabbed the front of Mr. Hanson’s shirt and buried his face in it, muttering, "I’m sorry dad. I’m so sorry. I...I..."

"Shh," Mr. Hanson tried to quiet his son. He held Taylor close, not quite sure what to say.

He heard Isaac step out of the bathroom and turned to face him. Still holding Taylor he said," I think you boys have learned your lesson. I expect that you will use better judgment from now on. Just so you know, your mother and I are going to pay for everything you drank so no one finds out about this. The last thing we need is for MTV news to do a brief about you guys getting drunk. And don’t think you aren’t going to have to pay us back for this little escapade," Mr. Hanson explained, but could tell that neither of his sons cared much about that at the moment.

"Dad, I think I have to throw up," Taylor moaned.

Mr. Hanson practically dragged Taylor into the bathroom, and as he had done for Zac, held Taylor’s head while he was sick.

"Dad, how’s Zac doing?" Isaac asked, wondering if his mother had brought aspirin.

"He’s in better shape than you two, that’s for sure. He told me he didn’t drink nearly as much as you two did." Mr. Hanson answered, turning his attention back to Taylor.

Mr. Hanson ended up ordering breakfast through room service for the whole family. He also gave Isaac, Taylor and Zac a few Tylenol to help with their headaches. None of them felt much like eating and Taylor could still not hold anything down.

Mrs. Hanson, not understanding why Taylor was still getting sick, walked over and placed a hand on his forehead.

"Walker, he’s burning up." she commented.

"He told me he wasn’t feeling good on the plane. He even said he felt like he was going to throw up before he drank anything, but I thought that maybe he was just tired cause he seemed fine in the hotel room." Zac informed them.

Isaac looked at his younger brother, wondering why he hadn’t noticed that Taylor didn’t feel good on the plane.

"Is that true?" Mrs. Hanson asked.
Taylor just nodded his head, looking miserable.

"Maybe you boys shouldn’t perform today," Mr. Hanson stated.

Taylor just shook his head. "I’ll be fine," he muttered, closing his eyes.

Three hours later, the Hanson family was waiting backstage on the Oddville set. Isaac saw Taylor sitting and staring at the ugly, puke yellow pants the stylist had forced him to wear, and realized that his brother hadn’t said a word to him all day.

"How are you feeling?" Isaac asked, sitting down next to Taylor. Taylor didn’t answer.

"Hey, what’s wrong?" Isaac tried again. He seemed to have forgotten what he had confessed to Taylor the night before. Taylor however, remembered it quite distinctly.

"Why do you care? I don’t want to speak to you." Taylor refused to look at his brother.

"What’s your problem? I know you’re not feeling good, but don’t take it out on me."

"Oh......oh you seem to have forgotten. See when I found out that my older brother, who is also supposed to be my best friend, is having sex with the girl I’ve had a crush on for just about forever, I kinda got a little upset," Taylor’s blue eyes pierced through Isaac.

"Look, Taylor, I am really sor..."

Taylor held up his hand. "Don’t bother," he said and walked away.