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5 years later:


    Well, I haven't grown up the way my parents would have hoped and prayed. My family among the celebrity world was known as the 'perfect' family. And perhaps part of it was me being a famous singer and actress but part was definitely my best friend, Kylie. You see, we moved to Los Angeles with the rest of her family when we were 14. And being young and thrown into the world of celebrities, we soon began trying all the things that I know my parents would have had a heart attack if they'd known what I was trying. Needless to say, among those mostly was drinking. I did try drugs once but soon decided I wasn't interested in those and switched to drinking constantly to alleviate stress. Of course, my parents also expected that their kids would always save their purity for marriage. And well, I did intend to, but well, one night when I was 16 and drunk, well, you'll soon see.


    "Lanie," Joe pushed my arm down to stop me from lifting the next glass to my mouth, "You've had enough. We should get you home."


    "But Joey," I whined.


    "Don't," he insisted as he pulled me off my barstool, “You know what your producer said about making a scene.”


    He pushed me out of the bar towards his car. I stumbled over to the passenger side where I somehow managed to get in without falling over. We drove back to his apartment but didn’t immediately get out once we were there.


    “What about Kylie?” I asked him as best as I could considering how drunk I was.


    “Kevin will make sure she gets home fine.”


    I stumbled my way up the stairs to Joe’s front door. He opened it and soon I was lying on his couch, trying to remember what had happened that had made me drink that night. See, I was impaired, but not so drunk that I wasn’t aware of what I was about to do.


    The next morning, Denise stopped by to check in and make sure Joe had been successful getting me back to sleep off the alcohol. Well, what she walked in on was not what she was expecting.


    Joe and I were sprawled in his bed, wearing nothing more than his sheets. And I think your imagination can do the rest. Needless to say, Mrs. Jonas was NOT happy.


    “Joseph! Alayna! Wake up now!”


    “Mom!” Joe sat straight up, saw where he was and who was next to him, and continued, “Oh, dang, Mom, this is not what it looks like.”


    “Oh, really, then what does this look like?”


    “Well, I guess it is what it looks like, but, Mom, I love her. And I wouldn't change what happened. Maybe the timing, but other than that...”


    Just then I finally opened my eyes to find Denise's eyes boring into mine. I sat up and pulled the sheets up to cover as much of me as I could before stammering,


    “Mrs. Jonas, I'm so sorry. I don't know what happened, I mean, I know What happened, just not why. Please, I beg you, don't tell my parents. It won't happen again.”


    Her eyes softened slightly as I climbed off the bed, taking the sheet with me as I grabbed my clothes, which were conveniently all in one pile and ran into the bathroom trying hard not to start crying until I was by myself.


    I dropped the sheet in a heap on the floor, stepped into the shower, turned on the water and began to try to wash away all the evidence of what had happened last night. As I scrubbed I finally began to sob. Soon I was just standing there, water flowing over and around me while I stood my head in my hands, tears flowing down my face.


    Outside the bathroom, Denise was perched on the edge of the bed while Joe pulled on sweatpants and an old tank.


    “What were you thinking, Joe? She's your sister's best friend. And she's 2 years younger.”


    “Yes, mom, she's younger and Kylie's best friend. But I don't know, it just felt right. I love her, mom.”


    “Even though not 6 months ago she and your brother broke up?”


    “Yes, but Nick was the one that broke up with her, they're still friends and it was because of that I got closer to her and realized I loved her.”


    “You realize though, that this can never happen again. And no one else can ever know.”


    “But, Mom!”


    “Don't 'But, Mom' me,” Denise went back to being stern, “I thought I had raised you to wait until marriage and I know Lanie's parents would be disappointed, but what's done is done. Can't be undone but we won't tell anyone. Understand?”


    “Yes,” Joe hung his head, “I understand.”


    Finally satisfied with that response, Denise left the bedroom. I finally turned the water off, wrapped a towel around me, sunk down to the bath mat covered floor and continued to sob. As soon as he was sure his mom wasn't going to walk in the room again, Joe came into the bathroom and sank down to the floor beside me.


    “I'm sorry I got you into this whole mess.”


    “Thank you,” I looked up, wiping the tear stained streaks off my cheeks, a weak smile showing through.


    “I certainly didn't mean to make you do something you'll regret.”


    “You didn't make me do anything I didn't want to at the time. I could have stopped you anytime, but I didn't. This whole mess is as much my fault as yours. And I don't totally regret our decision last night.”


    “You don't?”


    “No, I heard what you told your mom and what she said to you.”


    “You did? Then you heard me tell her that I'm in love with you?”


    “Yes, but she's right, you know? We're both with Disney and this incident would be frowned on by their executives.”


    I soon got dressed and went back to my parents' house, knowing full well that I would never be the same again. I also realized that he wasn't the only one in love. I loved him. Still do. And I don't regret what I did. Maybe I didn't exactly promise to save myself for marriage, but I did promise to save myself for 'the one' and it was this moment that I thought I had kept that promise.

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