HAYDEN (Dragon Security Book 5) - Glenna Sinclair



Ten years earlier…

I curled up on Megan’s bed, watching her try on different tops for her date with Luke.

“I wish my mom would let me wear things like that.”

Megan glanced at me in the mirror. “Wear them anyway. She’s not around all the time.”

“Yeah, but she’ll find out. Mrs. Collings goes to our church. So does Mr. Waters.”

“Half the kids at our school go to your church, too. But that doesn’t mean they’ll all go blab to her.”

“Sure they will. They’re all afraid of her.”

Megan turned around, her blouse hanging open as she regarded me. “I wish we could convince her that you weren’t going to hell if you wore pink. You’d look so good in pink.”

I blushed. “I doubt it.”

“Chris Philips would ask you out in a heartbeat if you wore this pink blouse,” she said, grabbing it off the hanger. “You’d look so good in it.”

I got up and took it from her, holding it up against my chest. It was a good color, a soft pink that made the color of my cheeks look a little more natural. It made my dark eyes and mousy hair look different, somehow. Maybe it was just me. Maybe it was what Megan had said. But I felt different as I stood there, the blouse up against my chest.

“You’re beautiful,” Megan said softly, coming up behind me and resting her hands on my shoulders.

We’d known each other a little more than a year, ever since we both matriculated into Sam Houston High School from our previous middle school. I don’t know how we found each other, but we did. And now…I couldn’t imagine my life without her.

“I don’t think I’ll ever find a guy who’ll look at me the way Luke looks at you.”

Megan smiled. “He does have a way of looking at me, doesn’t he?” She sighed. “But you will. The only reason Luke and I are so close is because we’ve known each other forever. But you’ll find your one. I know you will.”

“Not according to my mom. Love is for silly girls who don’t believe strongly enough in God. To hear her talk, you’d think I was an immaculate conception.”

“Maybe you were. You never did meet your dad.”

“Yeah. Maybe.”

I handed the blouse back to her and curled up in the center of her bed. “I just want a guy to look at me and make me feel like the most beautiful girl in the world.”

Megan came over and curled up beside me on the bed. “It’s not all sunshine and flowers,” she said, taking my hand. “Luke can be a real jackass sometimes. He told his friends every detail about our first date, making himself seem like a real player. I was so mad when I found out.”

“He was just showing off. You’re like the most popular girl in the sophomore class.”

“I doubt that.”

“No, it’s true. And he’s always been this sort of second class citizen because his mom is a housekeeper, so he feels like he has some catching up to do to be in your league.”

Megan glanced at me. “You really think so?”

“I do. I see it.”

She nodded. “See how good you are with people? You see things that other people don’t.”

I shrugged. “Because I’m always in the background—observing.”

“You’ll be the one in the spotlight someday, Sam.”

I smiled, but I didn’t believe it. I wasn’t that girl. But I would be perfectly happy if I could be Megan’s friend for the rest of my life. She pulled me into a world I never thought I’d be a part of. I loved her for that.

You can’t choose your