Authors: Devon Vaughn Archer
Tags: #teen, #young adult, #teen romance, #romance, #high school, #friends, #sexual abuse, #multicultural, #coming of age, #basketball, #teen drinking
By Devon Vaughn Archer
Copyright 2011 by Devon Vaughn Archer at
Smashwords. All rights reserved.
Cover Image Copyright R. McKown, 2010
Used under license from
Her Teen Dream is a work of fiction. Names,
characters, places, and incidents are either the product of the
author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to
actual events, locales, business establishments, or persons, living
or dead, is entirely coincidental.
Smashwords Edition, License Notes
This ebook is licensed for your personal
enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to
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of this author.
Other Books by Devon Vaughn Archer
YOUNG ADULT FICTION
His Teen Dream
Christmas Wishes: Laura's Story (under name
R. Barri Flowers)
Ghost Girl in Shadow Bay (under name R. Barri
Danger in Time (under name R. Barri
Vandals: A Young Adult Short Story Thriller
(under name R. Barri Flowers)
The Hitman's Woman
Pleasure in Hawaii
The Secrets of Paradise Bay
Destined to Meet
Love Once Again
For my nieces
Kendre and Keeare
* * *
“Hey, Karin, what’s up?”
Karin Blanch looked around through eyes that
were deep brown like cappuccino before focusing on Reese McKenzie’s
face. Surely he couldn’t be talking to her. Could he? After all,
Karin could probably count on one hand the number of times Reese
had spoken to her since she started at Elmwood High School a year
ago. And, even then, it had always been pretty generic with things
like “excuse me” or “sorry, didn’t see you standing there” or “I
need to check out this book.”
The book part was in reference to her work in
the school library, where she sat at the checkout desk once a week
as a reward for two other days of collecting books off tables and
placing them back on shelves.
But they weren’t in the library. And she
wasn’t on duty. They were in the middle of the hallway with other
students passing on either side in a mad rush to answer the call of
the bell between classes. It was the first week of January and the
school year was well underway.
For a moment, Karin was speechless, a term
that was rarely in her vocabulary. Not only was Reese quite
possibly the best looking and probably most fit guy in the entire
school, but she also had a major secret crush on him. As did half
the other sixteen-year-old sophomore girls. But none of them seemed
to have a fighting chance with the eighteen-year-old,
six-foot-three starting point guard for the school basketball team.
At least not while he was dating Cheryl Green, the gorgeous junior
cheerleader who seemed to mesmerize every guy she set her sights
But that was now a thing of the past, Karin
thought of the much-publicized breakup of the former high school
sweethearts. She wasn’t really sure who broke up with whom. And,
frankly, didn’t care. Right now, she was only concerned with why
Reese had stopped her from continuing on to class.
Or maybe curious was a better word.
“Hi, Reese,” she made her lips move.
He rubbed his shiny shaved head, as if having
second thoughts, before speaking. “Can we talk for a moment?”
Aren’t we already doing that?
“Sure. Why not?”
Never mind the fact that Karin was due in her
English class and Mrs. Roddick had a real problem with students who
were late. Of course she had a very good excuse, if only in her own
Though she was five-eight and apparently
still growing, Karin still had to tilt her head back to look into
Reese’s ebony eyes.
“Let’s talk over here—” Reese grabbed her
hand and they made their way to the wall, where the congestion was
slightly more manageable for talking.
He’s actually holding my hand,
thought in disbelief.
Am I dreaming or what?
Deciding she was very much awake, Karin still
had to come to grips with the fact that she and Reese McKenzie were
about to have an
conversation. Or so she assumed.
About what, she couldn’t imagine. Maybe he wanted to admit to
having his own crush on her.
. Or that he’d
always wanted to hold her hand. She doubted it.
By the look on Reese’s face, she decided
whatever was on his mind was more serious than that.
Feeling more nervous than she wanted to be,
Karin flipped back her shoulder length brown hair. And waited.
Reese hesitated, licking his lips. “Look, uh,
I need some advice.”
She batted her lashes in shock. “You need
advice from me?”
“Well, it’s not actually me, but a buddy of
Karin suddenly felt disappointed. “What kind
Reese met her gaze. “Your Dad’s a lawyer,
It made no sense to deny it, considering that
Karin’s father was a well-known criminal defense attorney, handling
his fair share of headline cases in Crescent Heights, California.
But it was still amazing to Karin that Reese knew of the
“Yeah, he is,” she answered hesitantly.
“Thought so.” Reese touched the bridge of his
broad nose, as if patting himself on the back. He glanced at a
group of students huddled together like they were on the basketball
court. All seemed to look their way and Karin wondered if this was
some kind of prank, with her being the butt of the joke. If so, she
wasn’t amused at all.
“I’ve gotta get to class,” she said unevenly.
“If we’re through here—”
“Wait,” Reese uttered with a sense of
urgency. “Just ignore them. My friend really does need the help of
“What has he or she done?” Karin wondered who
he was talking about. Since she didn’t hang out with Reese, she
could only imagine who his friends were. Mostly jocks, probably.
For all she knew, he considered his ex-girlfriend Cheryl Green a
Reese sighed. “There was a party last night
at a friend’s place. Well, uh, one of my boys got wasted and kind
of trashed the place. Now the homeowners want to press charges. My
buddy’s freaked out about it, since he’s afraid it might jeopardize
his college scholarship. Not to mention he could possibly end up
doing time. He was hoping to make restitution without getting the
legal system involved.”
“I’m not sure that I can—”
“I thought maybe you could talk to your Dad
about it.” Reese cut in.
“I guess.” Karin shrugged, wishing he had
been more interested in her rather than just needing her father’s
help. But it had probably been asking too much to think that Reese
McKenzie could really be attracted to her.
He grinned sheepishly. “Thanks. I really
appreciate it, Karin.”
“I’ll need a name if my Dad’s going to be
able to help your friend, and I’m not saying he will—”
It wasn’t every day—how about never?—that she
brought a problem to her father as an attorney. The experience
should be interesting, if not scary.
Reese looked at the group of students and
back. “Marcus Payne,” he said almost guiltily. “He’s—”
“I know who he is,” Karin said, recognizing
him amongst Reese’s friends. Marcus stood head and shoulders above
the rest and was easy to spot with his black dreadlocks with blonde
highlights. He was a walk-on starting forward on the Elmwood High
Spartans basketball team. Any scandals involving him could affect
the entire school and the team’s chances to play for the state
Reese sighed. “Hope your old man doesn’t mind
taking on a charity case every now and then. Marcus isn’t from a
rich family and doesn’t have a lot of money to burn.”
Maybe he should have thought of that before
he vandalized the house.
Karin felt unsympathetic for some reason. She
knew her father did some pro bono work, but it was usually for
clients whose cases he passionately believed in. Whether this one
fit the standard remained to be seen.
“Can’t promise anything,” she told Reese
honestly. “But I’ll try.”
Reese grinned as though it was a done deal
and Karin nearly melted as if under his spell.
“I’ll relay the message to Marcus. I knew you
learning something new every day.
“Yeah. I’ve seen you around...and
Embarrassed, she was suddenly short on words
again. It was as if she were dreaming that Reese McKenzie was—or
could become—her boyfriend and she was afraid to do or say anything
that might wake her up to reality.
Reese managed to do just that when he said,
“Well, I’ve gotta run. Coach Cleaver hates it when we’re late to
Karin resisted a smile. She knew the coach
wasn’t the only one who had a dislike for tardy students.
“Mrs. Roddick is every bit as hard on her
English students,” she said.
Reese smiled crookedly. “I know. Had her last
“See ya.” Karin watched him take looping
strides to join his friends, before they all headed off. Marcus
Payne gazed at her, and there seemed to be a ray of light in his
dark features. Karin swallowed, hoping she could deliver, if only
for the sake of a possible new friendship with Reese McKenzie. She
didn’t dare imagine anything more.
* * *
Karin sat next to Lesley Rochester in English
class. Lesley was also sixteen and more developed than Karin’s
shapeless body. She wore her short black hair in a curly natural
style. They had been best friends and next-door neighbors since
“I can’t believe it! You were two minutes
late and Lady Dragon didn’t bite your head off,” Lesley whispered.
“She must be sleepwalking today.”
Karin suppressed a chuckle. “Either that or
she’s mellowing in her old age.”
In fact, Mrs. Roddick was around the same age
as Karin’s parents. Mid to late thirties was not really that old in
her book, but it was definitely getting up there.
Still on cloud nine, Karin leaned towards
Lesley. “You won’t believe who I just had a little chat with.”
Lesley looked at her skeptically. “Right. In
your dreams, girlfriend.”
Karin didn’t blame her for being doubtful.
She would have been, too, were the situation reversed.
“I’m serious.” Karin tried to keep her voice
“And how much did you pay him to give you the
time of day?”
“Nothing. He just walked up to me and started
“About what?” Lesley raised her voice a bit
It alerted the attention of Mrs. Roddick, who
approached them. “Is this a private conversation or something you’d
care to share with the
It certainly wasn’t something Karin wanted to
share. She gave Lesley the eye so she got the message.
“We were just comparing class notes,” Lesley
said quickly. “Sorry if we were a bit loud.”
“So what else is new?” Jimmy Nolen said from
behind them, evoking laugher from everyone else.
“Mind your own business,” Karin snorted.