Broderick Cooper

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Every word he spoke last night, his low and tender voice echoing in my mind, pulled me out of an adrenaline induced sleep. His confessions kept me light as air throughout every dream and in between. Giving up any memory of my near death experience, I couldn't get passed my thoughts of Broderick. My eyes opened with a fresh glimmer in them, and I could feel the warmth of the sun as it beamed through the windows, beckoning me to join the day in a renewed sense of life.

I couldn't wait to see him again.

My parents overslept from their night out, so church was no longer on the agenda this morning. Instead, true to my natural procrastination, I reminded myself of the marching band practices that would start tomorrow, and I figured it would be a good time to rehash a few flag drills before we learn a new routine for the upcoming football season.

After a quick shower, I got dressed and brushed my teeth. Looking into the mirror, my chin wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it was going to be. It was pink and raw. I dabbed some ointment on it, then headed to my parents' bathroom in search of two bandages for my elbows.

The entire morning was spent running through flag drills on the front lawn until I felt prepared for the week ahead. It was like riding a bike. Tossing the blue and yellow sickle shaped flag with a simple flick of my wrist and catching it with rhythmic ease had become second nature. Keeping time by lifting my heels in tiny movements, I maneuvered the flag in graceful twirls and spins until I decided to take a break for lunch. On the way inside, I stopped to retrieve the coffee lid laying in the yard by the house; the one that nearly caused me to meet my maker the night before.

Mom and Dad were sitting in the kitchen rehashing their night out together, sharing a pot of coffee. "Good afternoon!" I chirped.

"Well, you're in a cheery mood." My mother smiled brightly.

"What's that on your face?" Dad asked.

My hand quickly popped up to touch the graze on my chin. "Oh! That?" I grasped for an easy lie. "I tripped and fell in the driveway last night." I began pouring a bowl of cereal.

"Is that what happened to your elbows, as well?" my dad raised as he stood up and made his way to the back door.

"Yes. I was in a hurry to get in and start the movie I rented," I answered, hoping to change the subject. "You know me, Dad. I'm just that talented." He shook his head and walked outside to enjoy his cup of coffee while sitting on the back deck. I chuckled softly at my clumsiness as I pulled a spoon from the drawer and sat down at the table.

"So what are your plans for today since we're out-of-church heathens?" Mom winked playfully.

"Broderick and I are going to hang out for a bit today," I stated nonchalantly as I finished my cereal.

"A date?" my mother asked with a curt smile.

"Just friends," I insisted, hoping my face wasn't betraying me.

"Cari called to check on you while you were outside."

"You didn't say anything about where I was yesterday afternoon, did you?" I was panic-stricken.

"Why does it matter?"

I shook my head. "I'll never hear the end of it from her. She doesn't trust Broderick because he's popular."

Before my mom could offer some advice over the matter. Natalie walked in from her overnight stay at Amber's wearing a cute lime green dress with tiny white polka dots that didn't match well with the navy blue sling she sported on her left arm. She stood in the middle of the kitchen with her free hand on her hip. "How was church?" Her tone was thick in sarcasm.

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