Timo decided on their nonstop trip that maybe Megan wasn't a friend at all. It started when he had to sleep in the backseat with Izzy. Obviously, Megan didn't like the dog, either.
"Would you rather be by yourself?" He asked her later after a very long ordeal of getting out of New York City. There was a moment Timo thought they might never get to the country, and when they did, he had to admit..it felt like freedom.
"Completely." She held on that stirring wheel as if she'd never let go. He had to plead for potty breaks for Izzy.
"I think you were a truck driver, in another life." What was her problem? He decided to shut up and go to sleep and hope he woke up when they got there. Of course, that didn't happen.
"Aren't you going to call your parents, or something?" Megan asked somewhere in Indiana or it might have been in Illinois.
"Why should I? I'm their problem child. Don't you know, no news is good news, when it comes to me?" He winced. Although, it was amazing to him, how he'd gotten this far on his own. Now, moving to the mid-west. Of course, she made him feel guilty. And for a second, he wished he'd called and told them how it hadn't worked out in New York, but he just couldn't. They'd see it as a failure. And a part of him didn't expect it to get any better, anytime soon.
Yet, Megan jolted on across the flat states until there were hills again. It wasn't along until they found the driveway to park in, and Megan was all giddy with her friends while Timo waited with Izzy. Soon enough, there was a fellow who looked like he might be the help that ran the place. He grabbed Timo's stuff and lead the way to the kitchen.
"We'll put your stuff in my room." He told Timo. "I don't use it for much, these days. I'm Smed." His grip was steady as he shook Timo's hand. Timo couldn't help but crack a slight smile. At least someone was expecting him. Smed lead the way to the basement.
Izzy was on her best behavior as she let Smed slide his hand over her head and stroke her neck. Smed smiled as if he were happy to Izzy.
"You hungry?" He looked up at Timo.
"Yeah." Timo couldn't help but say. Megan didn't stop for food. She was off upstairs with her friend.
"We've got some chili on the stove. And Sammi made some lemon bars." Smed lead him back to the kitchen. He asked him then if he cooked. Timo told him not much.
"That's OK. We won't make you clean up anything just yet." Smed grinned. "But, we all chip in. Sometimes, Caitlin gets on a cleaning binge, but she's not quite like that, this summer. Not just yet." He winced.
Timo wondered just what Smed was trying to tell him.