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Chapter 2

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Since it was Friday, Sean's mom and Anna were both at the salon. His mom had started up her own little business cutting and styling hair when she was twenty, so naturally, she was thrilled when Anna wanted to apprentice under her. Before she'd even finished high school, Anna had already amassed her own list of regular customers, so now that she was twenty, she was already well set on her career.

"Hi, Hun!" Sean's mom called from the other side of the salon as he entered.

"Hey, Sean." Anna waved with a comb in her hand.

"Morning," Sean replied.

His cousin patted the chair at her station with her free hand and he caught a concerned glance between the two women as he sat down.

"Is everything okay?" Anna asked.

"Yep."

Was he just a dick? Was that why things hadn't worked out with him and Jesse? He swiveled the chair around to look at himself in the large mirror.

"You look puzzled," Anna whispered, grinning when Sean looked up at her. "That or constipated."

"Thanks. I'm neither," Sean said with a wry smile. "Just thinking."

"I'll let you know if I start smelling something burning then," she stated, unwrapping a stick of Juicy Fruit and popping it in her mouth.

"Are you and your bae still pretty close, even though he's gonna leave for school soon?" Sean wondered.

Anna tilted her head slightly before moving behind him and tousling his dark mess of brown hair.

Sean's gaze focused on her reflection, and the way her darker skin contrasted with his own.

"Yeah, I guess," she replied before adding, "I mean we aren't attached at the hip or anything. Why?"

Sean itched his forehead just above his brow. He stared back at his reflection, trying to imagine himself fifty years from now...like the Gibsons. Maybe his hazel eyes would be a little duller, his thick, wavy hair white or gone, even... and he tried to imagine who would be with him.

"No reason," he finally said, though he'd immediately felt disappointed in himself for pussing out, and not saying what was in his head. But... maybe he was thinking too much about the breakup.

"You should let me do something with your hair. Your undercut's getting long."

"I like it a little longer," Sean defended. Maybe him and Jesse had just needed to be together longer as well...

"Then let me color it?"

...or maybe not.

"I don't want it blond." His immediate and firm response made his cousin laugh. "I'm headed to the Book Barn, actually. Was just stopping in to say hi on my way."

"Are you sure? I could do a balayage. That would look good on you."

"A bala-what?" Sean shook his head. "Maybe just a trim later."

Anna rolled her dark eyes. "You're so basic, Sean."

"Yeah, well... Trying too hard to look cool never seemed very cool," he said with a wide grin as he hopped out of the chair.

"Hey, could you do me a favor?" Anna said, shielding her eyes from the sun as she stepped outside with him. "Before they get any busier, could you run across the street and grab me something?"

La Petite Cafe sounded French, but the owners, Mr. and Mrs. Peters were definitely not. Sean was pretty sure the spelling wasn't even right, but the food was good at least.

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