One of my favorite parts of writing this series is when I can do flashbacks. There is a point in this book where Tommy revisits the moment he first met Jack. Here is a sample of that memory.
It was the right decision. They just didn’t love him enough anymore and he would show them. He packed a sandwich and his favorite book and a few toys in his backpack and headed off down the street.
Jack was playing with his trucks on the driveway when he saw a boy walking down the street, a baseball cap on and a pack on his back. He didn’t recognize him from school, but his mom didn’t let him go to any other classroom. He looked up and caught the boy’s eye.
“Whatcha doing?” the boy walked up the driveway and asked.
Jack walked to him and shrugged. “Playin.”
“Did you just move here?”
“Yep. We live downa street.”
“Oh,” Jack smiled. “I’m six.”
“Why do you have a bag?”
“I was runnin away.”
The boy shrugged.
“My mom said I wasn’t allowed to run away.”
“My mom won’t care.”
“Dat’s not true.” He waited and the boy didn’t say anything. “My name is Jack.”
“Wanna play with me?”
“Kay,” Tommy put his bag down and sat on the driveway with Jack. They played for a long time and finally Tommy looked at him. “Do you have a sister?”
“Nope, just me,” Jack said and took Tommy’s bag. He rifled through it and took out the sandwich. He took a bite and Tommy stared at him.
“That’s mine,” Tommy said.
“I was hungry.”
“But this is your house. Go in and get your own.”
“If I go in, my mom will want to know who you are and then I will have to tell her I you ran away. You will have to go home and you would get mad. I like you,” Jack grinned and his dimples showed.
Tommy smiled. “Thanks.”
He shrugged. “So do you have a sister?”
Tommy’s face darkened. “Yes. She just got here.”
“My mom’s stomach. She and my dad won’t stop fussing over her and they don’t care about me. I hate her.”
Jack handed him half of the sandwich and they ate together. “You can stay here if you want.”
“Thanks. You seem nice.”
“I am. Mom tells me that all the time.”
Just then, Amanda ran outside and up to Jack. “Are you Thomas?”
Tommy’s eyes grew wide. “Uh huh.”
She sighed. “Your parents have been looking all over for you. What are you doing here?”
Jack looked at his new friend and then at his mom. “I met Tommy and asked him to play wif me. It’s my fault, he shouldn’t get in trouble.”
Tommy watched his new friend take the blame for him being there and he smiled. “I didn’t mean to scare them.”
Amanda crossed her arms. “Jack, you know you aren’t supposed to have friends over without asking permission.”
“But I didn’t know he was coming over and I didn’t know he was a friend. Now I know both. Mom, can Tommy stay for dinner?” Jack flashed her his dimples.
“When did you get so smart?” She smiled at him and looked at Tommy. “Come inside and call your mom before she sends the police over.”
Tommy stood up slowly. “Yes Maam.”
Amanda smiled at the cute little boy who resembled her son in so many ways. She followed him in and Jack joined them. They waited while Tommy spoke on the phone. He wiped his nose with the back of his hand and Maddie handed him a tissue. When he hung up, they all sat down at the table and she brought out some milk and cookies.
“Want to talk about it?”
Jack took a cookie and grinned. “Mom said there is nothing wrong that can’t be fixed with milk and cookies.”
Tommy pulled his cap down over his head more and shrugged. “I got a sister and she is smelly and no one cares about me anymore.”
Amanda smiled at the little boy. “What’s her name?”
“Julie. My mom is Juliana and they named her just like her. My dad’s name is David and they didn’t name me like that. Dey love her more.”
Jack shook his head. “Nu uh. My name is nothing like my daddy and he and mommy love me very much.”
Amanda smiled. “We do and your parents love you very much, I’m sure of it. I know your mom, Tommy. We met at the school parent meeting before she had Julie. She couldn’t stop talking about how wonderful you are and how much she loves you. She and your dad are very proud of you and they wanted you to know that.”
Tommy looked at her, his chin quivering. “Really?”
Amanda shook her head. “Really. Now how about you boys finish your snack and then play outside while I fix dinner.”
Jack smiled. “Cool.”
Tommy grinned. “Are we friends now?”
Jack held out his hand. “We have to shake on it. When we shake on it, we become best friends forever.”
Tommy shook his hand and smiled. “I never had a best friend.”
“Me neither. Let’s go play,” he hopped down off the chair and he and Tommy ran back outside to play.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read!