If you've never heard of Long Meadow, I cant say I'm surprised.
Long Meadow is the kind of place that just sort of falls into the forgotten, because there is nothing worth remembering. It was the kind of place where secrets spread like wildfire, where everyone was content to sell their souls for the roles they played.
Summer was in full swing now. Kids ran rampant, free of the chains of school, at least for a while. Adults woke and worked and came home to their families. Everyone had a family in Long Meadow. Everyone had a home.
I was walking down the sidewalk, like any other day. I had my acoustic guitar strung across my back and one headphone dangling from my ear. Mouthing along to Something Corporate and staring down at my Converse Hightops. I thought that maybe I might find them some pink laces. A little color to brighten my summer wardrobe couldnt hurt.
My name is Meghan Tate, and as much as it pains me to admit, I am very much a cliche. When you're trapped in small town hell, it's easy to dream of bigger things. But me...I was just so, so sure. I knew I was meant for something more. I was not to live and breathe and die here. One day I would escape.
I stopped in my tracks, spun to face the person in question. A pair of dark eyes stared out at me from a stone cold face.
"Tyler," I greeted quietly. Forced a smile.
"Where are you headed?" He asked. I thought he might just be making small talk, but I couldnt stop the suspicion from coming. Long Meadow was, like any small town, defined by the people who populated it. I guess every town needed a bad guy to balance out the general goodness of it all. I wasnt quite sure if Tyler had signed up for the role or if he had just fallen victim to a lot of bad luck.
"Home," I lied, because I wasnt really sure where I was going, but I knew he wouldnt follow me there. Not with my dad and all...
Tyler offered me a small smile, but it looked just a bit too wolfish for my liking. I wondered what secrets he was so viciously protecting, and when they would come spilling through the seams. No one could keep secrets in this place for long, not even him. I narrowed my eyes in response to his grin.
"So..the fair's tomorrow," he said, like he was doing some great deed in telling me, like I didnt already know. Every summer, Long Meadow held a festival to kick off the season. Everyone in town got involved somehow, contributing whatever they could. Or, almost everyone, I thought, stealing a glance at Tyler. He was leaned up against the side of a shop, looking anywhere but at me.
"I'm hoping to play a little," I admitted. I didnt know what had driven me to tell him that. Tyler nodded like he understood, when of course I knew he had know idea. How could he? Music was the one thing in my life keeping me sane, keeping me grounded in this nothing town. It had been my passion for as long as I could remember, an escape from reality.
No, Tyler certainly could not understand that. If he had something like music in his life, he wouldnt have been such a problem. If he had something to turn to, he wouldnt need to scream out for attention so loudly.
"Right," I said awkwardly. "Well, I'll see you around."
With that as a goodbye, I hurried on down the sidewalk, leaving him behind. A few steps and my gaze was already back on my shoes. Maybe blue laces, I decided, instead of pink. I got the feeling it was going to be a blue kind of summer.