How will Sarah handle all of Joe’s friends and her first party hanging out with them? Does Tom have anything special planned to spice things up a little?
Joe drove up to Sarah’s place and quickly headed to the front door. Just as he was about to ring the doorbell, the door quickly opened and it was Sarah’s mom. Hi Joe, Sarah’s heard you drive up and is not quite ready and asked me to have you come in for a couple minutes. She said it wouldn’t be long. She was a little late getting home from work today. No biggie replied Joe. We are not on any type of time schedule. It’s not like we had to have a reservation for a bonfire. June laughed as she smiled at Joe. You have a great sense of humor Joe. I like that. It is what makes life fun. Too many people get all serious and loose what this life is really meant to be about. God wanted us to have fun and enjoy what he created not be some stick in the mud. Just then Sarah walked around the corner. Well you two have fun, Sarah’s mom added as she turned to make her way towards the kitchen. We will mom. I won’t be too late. I plan to go to church in the morning. Hey Joe, are you still coming with me? Sure am. That’s great, replied June. Hey, I was planning to get your dad to take me out to lunch after the service. You guys want to join us? What do you think Joe, Sarah added as she smiled at Joe? Sounds like a winner to me as he took Sarah’s hand in his. Oh super, June replied with a sound of approval on her voice. I will tell dad to make a reservation for four so we don’t have to wait too long. You know how those Sunday after church crowds can be. Yes mom, Sarah replied as she smiled at Joe with a raised eyebrow. See you later if you’re still up. Ha, ha Sarah. You two have fun, replied June as she turned and walked back into the kitchen with a smile on her face telling herself how nice it is to see Sarah so happy. Joe must be good for that girl.
Joe and Sarah made their way to the car and found themselves standing next to the passenger’s door when Joe pulled Sarah up close and gave her a kiss which didn’t just last a couple seconds. Sarah responded with a huge hug as she kissed him back. I hope your mom and dad know how much I like you Joe added once the passion of their kiss slowed down. I think they already know Joe. Joe opened the door and Sarah climbed in and before long they were on their way to the location where the party was already underway having small talk about the day as they drove along.
Joe pulled into an open spot off to the side of the other vehicles and shut the engine off when Sarah said; wow, there are quite a few cars here. I hope I know somebody else or you are going to have to hang with me all night. Well I know Ann will be here and you know Tom, so you will know at least three of us. But beware of Tom. You just never know what he will say especially after he has loosened up a little. He just loves to start something or just make some off the cuff comment just to keep the party interesting. He really is a nice guy and I have always got along with him. I would call him one of my best friends. He would give you the shirt off his back if you needed it. Joe opened his door and reached over the seat and grabbed his guitar. Sarah latched onto the cooler with pop and beer in it and they made their way to the bonfire. I see they saved me my favorite tree to set next to, Joe told Sarah as he smiled to himself. Joe walked Sarah over to his favorite spot and had Sarah set next to the tree so she could use the trunk as a backrest as he would normally do. Oh I see what’s going on here Joe, Tom piped in. This must be serious if you are going to give up your special tree trunk to Sarah he continued as he pointed his finger waving it back and forth between Joe and Sarah. Yup, you got it Tom, responded Joe as he sat down on the log next to Sarah. We are very much together added Joe as Sarah looked at him with a surprised look on her face but also a smile of approval that everyone could see. Joe looked around to see who all has showed up as he began to play a few note on his guitar making sure it was tuned correctly. Only a few seconds had passed when he noticed Carol sitting on the other side of the fire. Oh boy. I didn’t see this coming. Worry and concern started to rattle through his mind when he looked over at Tom just to see him smiling like he was the one that invited her. Joe started playing and a couple other guys joined in as the music began to add additional life to the flickering flames of the bonfire in front of them. The first song had lead into a second when Joe leaned over to Sarah and said guess who’s here? A lot of people I don’t know are here I can tell you that, responded Sarah. See the girl with the pink scarf as Joe motioned with his head. I think so. You mean the girl on the other side of the fire, questioned Sarah? Yes – well that is Carol. The “Carol”, Sarah whispered in his ear? Did you talk to her yet? No! Well she should know by now since you just announced to everybody that you and I were together and not just as a date. Well – one way or another she was going to find out about you, commented Joe as he picked up the pace of the song and rolled right into another one. Several of the girls stood up and started dancing around the fire. It was only a short time when several guys joined in after a little prodding by the girls. Others just relaxed and watched the flames dance in spectacular colors as they bounced off the logs and swirled in the air. The others were still playing their guitars when Joe stopped long enough to lay his down and ask Sarah if she would like a beer or a soda as he leaned over to open the cooler. A beer sound good right now replied Sarah. Joe fished out two beers handing one to Sarah.
Ann was sitting a little off to the left of Sarah and smiled as she waved when Sarah reach over to take the beer from Joe’s hand. Hi Ann. Joe told me you would be here. Do you know everybody here? Yes, most of them are friends we hang out with everyone once in a while, replied Ann. They are all a lot of fun and you will fit right in. If you can get along with Tom who is the biggest pain here, you will like everyone else, Ann said with a big smirk on her face. Oh come on Ann, replied Tom with a big grin. Me! You know you love me for it. You really think so Ann fired back. Well, I guess maybe sometimes I do. You do keep a party lively. You can say that again added Joe. Joe picked up his guitar again and the music continued for the next hour as the three players exchanged song ideas and those that knew the words to the songs sang along. Sarah was having a good time singing the songs she knew when Joe leaned over saying; wow, you have a great voice. Where did you learn to sing like that? You shouldn’t hide something that sounds as good as that. Well thank you Joe replied Sarah with a slight blush on her face not knowing how to reply to the compliment. I guess I did sing in choir at school and I still sing in the choir at church. I have actually liked to sing since I was a little girl. Ann overheard Sarah and Joe’s conversation and came over and sat down striking up a conversation about old times singing in the choir at school and the couple times they sang in church together. They started following along with the next song and before long were harmonizing taking the song to a new level, something that also surprised Tom. He just never realized Ann could sing that good either. Before long everyone was joining in, even those that couldn’t carry a tune if their life depended on it. Everyone was laughing and having a good time as the fire started to dwindle down. Joe leaned over to Sarah and said; I need to visit the rest room. I will be right back.
As Joe got up and walked away, Carol could finally see her opportunity to introduce herself to Sarah and find out just what’s really going on between the two of them. Walking around the fire she approached Sarah and sat right down in Joe’s spot, looked right at her and said hi, I’m Carol. I don’t think we have ever met. Well hi, I’m Sarah and no I don’t think we have. But it is nice to finally meet you. So you do know who I am, quickly replied Carol. Well Joe pointed you out and told me a little about how you two dated in the past. All good things I hope, replied Carol. He just said you guys dated for quite a while until you moved away. That’s true replied Carol. I take it that you two are an item now? Yah, we have been dating for the last couple months, replied Sarah as she offered up a smile that should have let Carol know she really liked Joe and that they were more than just ships passing in the night. Too bad for me I guess. Joe probably told you I was trying to get together with him again, added Carol, fishing to see if Sarah was totally interested in only Joe. Yes he did and he told me he was going to talk to you about us. He just hadn’t had a chance yet, Sarah responded with a look that should have sent a message to Carol that it was hands off Joe. Carol still wanting to check for any possibility that Sarah and Joe were just really good friends offered up; I was hoping Joe was unattached and that maybe we could get back together. But now I can see you two are a little bit attached. I think he was trying to tell me that the other night but I was not hearing what he was saying. Sorry if I caused any issue between you two. You know how guys can be though. A little wishy washy! Yes, you can say that again, Sarah added. Tom had been listening in on the conversation between Carol and Sarah and quickly replied with an; oh come on girls, guys aren’t like that. They sure are replied Sarah. Sarah, it was nice to meet you and you got yourself a real nice guy Carol added with a smile that let Sarah know any pursuit of Joe by Carol was over. Carol stood up and looked again at Sarah and added; if he treats you as nice as he did me you will be very happy. Joe walked out from around the corner and could see Carol standing next to Sarah and all he could think about was; oh boy, this night just went down hill. What is she up too? As Joe walked over to Sarah, Carol moved to the side making room for Joe to sit back down. Hi Carol, Joe responded as he looked down to the side to see Sarah looking directly at him with a smile. I see you met Sarah. Yes I did Joe and why didn’t you just tell me right out that you had a girlfriend? She is really nice and… well I like her and you better be good to her. Joe stood silent not knowing what to say. Carol just turned and started walking back to her seat next to Paul on the other side of the fire.
Hey, didn’t you and Joe date a couple years ago Paul asked Carol after she sat back down next to him? Yes we did, replied Carol. When I moved away I wanted a little freedom so I broke it off. I made a mistake I think. He is really a nice guy. Hey, what am I? Just a… oh stop replied Carol. I like you just as you are and I’ll bet you are as nice as anybody here once I get to know you. Paul smiled to himself thinking he would never have a shot with somebody as good looking as Carol. I try replied Paul. Carol smiled and gave Paul a peck on the cheek and no more reply was needed.
Tom looked over at Joe and smiled saying; guess that problem is gone. No thanks to you Joe replied. Ann hit Tom in the arm and Sarah laughed a little thinking back to what Joe told her. Hey Tom, sometimes things don’t turn out like you plan them Sarah said as she laughed at him? Ok, I guess I had that one coming, replied Tom as he grinned back at Sarah. Everyone broke out into a laugh and Sarah added, Tom I still like you and anyway I don’t have a choice if you are one of Joe’s friends. Ha, ha and that’s not going to end Sarah. We have been friends forever. We were neighbors while we were growing up and most of what Joe knows came from me. Well we can tell that none of his music talent ever rubbed off on you Tom! Wow, you’ve got quite the wit about you, don’t you Sarah? I try Tom. Joe just sat quietly listening and think how much he liked Sarah and how easily she handled Tom. I think Tom has met his match don’t you think Joe volleyed across to Ann? I think so Joe.
“To be continued”