Where Would You Be
March 14, 1998
Joni hadn’t touched another drink since that night. Kaitlynne was stilly bubbly and trying to be happy for the
sake of everyone around her. Today was Taylor’s fifteenth birthday. Kaitlynne was supposed to keep him busy while everyone
planned a surprise party for him at the Hanson house. They told her to keep him away from the house for about three hours.
She knew the perfect place… the mall! They could watch a movie and she could spend some time with him on his birthday.
Maybe even buy him a couple more gifts than she had left at the house with the other gifts.
“What do you want to see, Tay?” Kaitlynne asked once they were in line to get tickets.
“Um… whatever you want to. I really don’t mind…”
“Yes, you do, Taylor,” Kaitlynne laughed, “Don’t lie. It’s your birthday… I guess
I can tolerate an action movie.”
“I actually wanted to see Austin Powers…”
“Then come on.”
Taylor started to pull out his wallet, but Kaitlynne took his wallet and hid it in her purse. She gave him a smug smile
and pulled out her own money, paying for two tickets. He looked taken aback and started to say something but Kaitlynne hushed
him. This went on for a while before he seemingly gave up and let his prepubescent girlfriend beat him.
“You took my wallet,” he complained when she least expected him to speak.”
“And you can take my money on my birthday, but right now, I’m paying, so hush up and watch the movie!”
“Mean,” he mumbled.
“It’s my birthday, so I get what I want and I want to pay!”
“Nice try,” Kaitlynne laughed.
“Kaitlynne!” Taylor cried.
“Hush Tay!” She commanded, laughing.
They watched the movie together, laughing the whole time. After the movie, they shopped for about an hour. They went
to a ton of stores. Claire’s, Abercrombie, Virgin Records, and a ton of other stores. Taylor and Kaitlynne even piled
into a photo booth and took pictures. Taylor wanted to get home after a while, though, so he could spend some time with his
family. He and Kaitlynne caught a cab back to his house. Diana had paid for all Taylor’s relatives to take a cab from
a vacant parking lot, about a block away, to the house so Taylor wouldn’t know they were there.
Kaitlynne and Taylor walked inside and everyone jumped out screaming ‘Surprise!’ Taylor grinned and hugged
Kaitlynne before going around and saying hi to all of his family members. Memories flooded into Kaitlynne’s mind of
her family get-togethers. She felt tears in her eyes and went to sit on the infamous Hanson house stairs. Though it was his
birthday, Taylor was the first to notice she was gone. He came in and found her on the stairs.
“Hey,” he smiled, “Are you okay? We’re about to eat cake.”
“No, you aren’t. What’s wrong?”
“I don’t want to ruin your birthday, Tay. Go have fun. I’ll be alright.”
“Kaitlynne, I can’t have fun knowing that you’re over here upset. If you tell me what’s wrong,
maybe I can help you out and we’ll both have a little fun today instead of me having fun while you’re upset. That
doesn’t work for me.”
“It’s just… seeing you and all of your family… I remember when our family used to have big
get-togethers and celebrate some random holiday. At Christmas, Joni would always insist that everyone there wear a Santa hat.
It was so much fun, but we can’t do that anymore. We don’t even know half of our family anymore. I just wish that
things could go back to normal at least that much.”
“Kaitlynne, you do have a family, okay? You have us. I mean… I know we’re dating and everything,
but Jessie and Avie love it when you’re at the house and you actually play games with them. Mackie’s amazed that
you actually play with his action figures. Zoe loves all the attention you give her,” Taylor laughed, “Her first
word will probably be ‘Kaity.’ My parents love you, too. They love how you and Joni are always helping out, even
when you don’t have to. Every time they try to pay you guys, you refuse.”
“I know, Tay. And I appreciate it. It’s just not the same. I don’t feel well. I think I’m gonna
go home. If you want, you can come by after everyone leaves, but I think I’ll just be in my room.”
“Are you sure? You can lay down in my room.”
“I just want to go home. But thanks, Tay.”
Joni found them just as Kaitlynne was getting up to leave, “Where ya going, Kaity? We’re about to eat the
“I don’t feel well. I think I’m gonna go home.”
“You want me to go with you?”
“Nah, I’ll be fine.”
“Alright. Call if you need anything.”
Kaitlynne went across the street and up to her room. She laid down on her bed, with her feet on her pillow, and gazed
at the pictures of her and her parents and Joni. She wondered where they would be if her parents hadn’t died. They would
probably still be in Toronto, but would they still have met the Hanson family? Kaitlynne believed in fate, so she figured
they probably would have met sooner or later. As Kaitlynne began thinking, she thought maybe fate was what had killed her
parents so she and Joni would have Taylor and Isaac. After thinking that, Kaitlynne started to get depressed. She began thinking
that it was her fault.
Kaitlynne started crying. Where would Taylor be if her parents hadn’t died and she hadn’t met him? Would
he be with another girl? Would he be depressed because he didn’t have a girlfriend? Kaitlynne knew she was being stupid,
but sometimes she just wondered… was she being selfish by wanting both her parents back but still wanting Taylor?