April 27-May 10, 2015
From Chapter 3
Jeremy texted me about an hour ago, asking to meet at the bot- tom of The Barclay Bowl run. I stack my skis and poles in the stand outside the lodge. Quarter-size snowflakes drift through the air. I squint into the sun and follow the well-packed path towards Barclay. The slopes are still crowded—everyone’s trying to squeeze in a few more runs before the sun slips behind the hill.
My heart quivers when I see Jeremy standing in the shade of a thirty-foot Jack pine, leaning on his snowboard. I wave, but he’s too busy texting to notice me. Who is he texting?
“Hey Jeremy,” I call.
He holds up one finger to me, like my mom does when she’s on the phone. My heart sinks. A minute goes by before he smirks and stuffs the phone in his pocket. He faces me and his smile lifts my spirits.
“Hey Julia,” he says. He sounds serious—or something. I jam my hands into my jacket pockets. I would’ve worn my mitts, but they are soaked from my spills on the hill.
“How were the black diamonds?” I ask.
“Awesome. I smoked everyone up there.”
“Oh. Good. I graduated off the bunny hill. I even did a few greens and only fell twice. And look no broken bones.” I hold out my arms for his inspection. His eyebrows rise as he gives me a cursory glance. “Remember? Last time I went skiing, when I was eight—I broke my wrist,” I explain.
“Right,” he says and clears his throat, resting his snow- board against the pine tree. “Listen, Julia, I wanted to talk to you about something.”
The wind picks up and snowflakes swirl around us, blowing my long bangs across my face. I tuck my curls under the edge of my toque, so I can see Jeremy. I cup my frozen, angry red hands in front of my mouth, blowing hot air into them. It doesn’t help, so I stuff them back into my pockets.
He tugs me into his chest. “Tonight’s the night.” His mouthcrashes down on mine. I try to respond, but my lips are so cold they barely move. They ache under the weight of his lips. He pulls back, his smile tight.
“What’s wrong?” “Nothing. I’m just cold.”
“You won’t be for long. Once we’re back at the chalet, I’ll get you hot.” His lips caress my neck. “I need you, Julia. So much.” Shivers rush down my shoulders, spreading over my body.
I toss my head back, close my eyes, and sink into his embrace.
“Tonight, we’re going to finally do it,” he murmurs; his voice is low, husky. My eyes flash open. The tiny hairs at the back of my neck prickle as I untangle myself from his arms, pushing him away.
“Wait,” I say, fighting to comprehend what he’s saying. My hands rise in front of me in the international accepted sign for “stop right there, mister,” preventing him from saying any- thing more.
Jeremy opens a tin of his signature extreme mints and pops a few in his mouth. He crushes and swallows the tiny candies in seconds.
“Jeremy,” I manage to whisper over the voice of panic that’s doing laps in my head, “do you think we’re having sex—tonight?”
“Of course. We’re out here, with no parents, it’s perfect.”
“But Jeremy, I thought you understood.”
“I do, and you wanting to wait to have sex is one of the best things about you. It makes you special, but it’s been a long time. Now we’re all the way out here…” his voice trails off as he runs his hand through his dark blond hair. It stands on end, looking like he just tumbled off a magazine spread. “And you do love me, don’t you?”
“Love you?” I say, pausing. We’ve never said that to each other before. “Of course I do.”
“And I love you.”
He loves me. My breath catches. But I’m still not ready. I blink fast to stop the tears that gather, preparing to spill. My throat aches. I spin around, not able to look at him. Jeremy coughs—quiet at first and then louder, continuing until I turn and face him. He looks impatient. What am I sup- posed to do? Hot tears slip down my face, stinging my wind- burnt cheeks.
I try to speak, but all that comes out is a strangled, “I just can’t.”
“Julia, please don’t cry. Having sex is no big deal, really.
Everyone does it. You need to get over your sex issues.” “I know, but I’m just not—”
“Ready? I know, you keep saying that, but we’ve been dating close to two months and people who love each other have sex. Julia, I’ve been really patient. And generous. Do you know how much this weekend cost?”
“You know, Julia, people ask me what I see in you, and I always stick up for you, saying how great you are. How we are meant to be together. Maybe you don’t feel the same way I do.”
“Jeremy,” I plead. “That’s not true.” “Maybe we need to take a break.” “What?”
This can not be happening! I’m 165 kilometres from home, being dumped at the bottom of The Barclay Bowl run. How can this be happening?
“No, please Jeremy. You just said you love me.”
He cringes and inhales. He holds it for one, two, three seconds. He exhales and his spearmint breath stings my eyes.
“I do love you, Julia. But I need to know for sure that you love me back. I’ll give you some time to figure out what you’re willing to put into our relationship.”
“What does that mean?”
“It means that you’re on your own tonight.” “But, I’m staying with you—in the chalet.”
“I don’t think that’s a good idea.” His grey eyes darken to near black.
“You can’t be serious?” Oh my God, where am I supposed to sleep? I only have $40. This isn’t happening.
He yanks me close. His face is an inch from mine. He huffs his anger onto me.
“I love you, Julia, but I need you to figure out how much you love me, or we’re done. For good.”
My stomach recoils and then collides with my sinking heart. Jeremy still looks like his usual Tommy Hilfiger self, but I don’t feel those dancing butterflies in my stomach when I look at him. I still feel butterflies, but they aren’t in the mood for dancing. I turn my head, but those butterflies are too fast. They race up my throat. Macaroni and cheese splashes Jeremy’s brand new, first time worn, Novella snowboarding boots. Four hundred and thirty bucks gone in one KD barf.
Seriously bad day.In the book Forever Juila the author Jodi Carmichael really touches the reader's heart!. The book is told from the point of view of Julia the main character. The characters are in depth and Carmichael goes out of her way to keep the reader directly interested in what happens to the main character. The author uses stark reality when situations of pressure arise between the main character and her boyfriend, Jeremy.
you just never know who is going to be good with you or bad with you in life, but one thing is for sure love is definitely not dependent upon materialistic items or what one can offer. This book touches upon issues of social class and structure as well as psychological fears instilled via a partner in a domestic relationship. This is one of the best YA novels that I have read in a super long time! Carmichael definitely deserves a high rating for keeping in tune with reality as well as bringing meaning to what real good partners are not!
I rate this book a full five stars and recommend for all those that are dating age and up!
* I was given the book Forever Julia in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are mine and I have not been compensated for them.
JODI CARMICHAEL lives in Winnipeg where she can often be found dancing in the living room with her two wildly imaginative daughters, her patient and supportive husband, and a scruffy Border Terrier named Zoe. Jodi’s previous book for young readers, Spaghetti Is NOT A Finger Food, won numerous awards and has been a multi-week Bestseller.
Visit Jodi Carmichael at www.jodicarmichael.com
(1) winner will receive
a physical copy
by Jodi Carmichael
Winner Will Be Drawn
May 25, 2015