“You need a resolution
I need a resolution
We need a resolution
We have so much confusion…”

From “We Need A Resolution” by Aaliyah


“So I’ve been noticing you and Teddy getting all lovey-dovey with each other… what’s going there?” Odessa pried.

“No Ode, don’t even try to start something!” Kiko sighed. “Although he is looking kind of good tonight, he and his brother… real good!”

Odessa laughed. The two girls were by one of the cocktail tables in the party room at Llanfair, where Kiko’s grandmother Vicki was hosting a New Year’s Eve party. Practically all of her family, and the well-knowns in town were there. Kiko had also invited the tall and handsome Teddy Montgomery, who’d also come along with his equally handsome older brother and Jack Manning’s best friend, Xavier. Ace had come with the two brothers, as they had driven up from Pine Valley.

“To be honest, it kind of blows because even if I were interested in him, we both live in different towns, we’re both seniors, and we’ll both be graduating soon. So many schools have scouted him, but he plans on playing football at Ohio State, full scholarship. I know athletes get treated like they’re goddesses or whatever… and he won’t be thinking about me with all those girls throwing themselves at him… I mean just look at him! Anyway, assuming I get in, you know I want to go to NYU, and that’s too much distance for my blood anyway.” Kiko sighed. “Sometimes, I do think about what it would be like if Teddy and I were more than friends,” she sighed. “But some things are just better off left as is…”

“Yeah, I think I know how you feel. Sometimes I wonder about what’ll happen after graduation with Tim and me. I mean I know there’s the summertime and all but you know time will go by quickly. It’s just depressing thinking about it.”

“When do you hear from the schools you applied to?”

“Between mid-February and early-March. But I only care about getting into Syracuse. When I visited the school last summer with Mom and Dad I really liked it there, in terms of the campus and for the graphic arts department. Dad loves the fact that one of his all-time favourite Eagles player studied at the visual arts department. A guy named Donovan something. Anyway, I just hope I get enough scholarship if I get in… But with Tim, I don’t know what the hell he’s gonna do… he doesn’t even know what he wants to do… Do you know he’s carrying a 4.5 G.P.A?”

“Wow! I knew he was smart and all, but geez! Too bad he can’t afford going to university… I’m assuming anyway. Did he even bother taking the SATs?”

“Kiko, that’s the strange thing. Based on academics, I think he could easily get into any school he wanted. Even though he was home-schooled he told me a while back that he took the SATs at a private centre when he was 15, and ended up getting a mark 300 points short of a perfect score! I believe it too because he’s been taking almost all of his classes he's taken were hard and advanced classes -- Senior Year, mind you -- and getting high marks. His work ethic alone is abnormal, yet I don’t think he has any desire for higher education.”

“Man, my dad would be bragging his butt off to everyone if I was smart as smart as Tim. How’d he like skiing with the Mannings?”

“He said he was rusty and his legs are still a little sore, I guess, since he did a lot of snowboarding with Starr. He also said the trip, overall, was okay, but I think he was trying to downplay it… his eyes were saying he had a wicked time!”

“Hehe, guys think they’re so smooth… speaking of which there’s Duke over there with Derek and Xavier. I’m gonna go over their and interrupt their conversation.” Kiko conspired. Odessa gave her a wry look. “What? Technically, I’d be doing of them a favour… they’d all get to talk to me,” she joked. “I’ll be right back.” Kiko went over to where the guys were. Soon afterwards, Skyler and Tamzin had joined Odessa over at the table, engaging in small talk when Teddy came over to them.

“Hey, have you guys seen Yuriko around?” asked Teddy. “I want to know if she was serious about making a resolution.”

“Hehe, knowing her you’d just be wasting your time, but she is over there with Derek and her brother Duke,” she pointed out to the pair’s direction.

“Ah okay, cool… You know, I’ve never been to Llanview, but I’m glad I finally got a chance to visit her. We talk on the phone occasionally, but I think it’s been a couple of years since we last saw each other, sad as that is,” he said sheepishly.

“Well, I’m glad you’re finally able to make it up here, we’ve heard quite a bit about you… Did you and Xavier come up here with Ace?” Skyler asked.

“Yea, but I don’t think we’ll be doing that again. Ace purposely sang karaoke the whole drive up and that cat is the worst singer I’ve ever heard! Xavi was close to throwing him out on the backroads. It was like riding the bus to away games all over again, when we played football together.” Teddy laughed. “By the way Odessa , I’ve met Tim and I gotta say I’ve never met anyone as laid-back as him… Definitely an interesting dude. Did he ever get some aspirin?”

Odessa was puzzled. “What do you mean?”

“Well while we talking he’d keep rubbing his temples. I asked him what the matter was. He said his head had been hurting him a little all night.”

Odessa frowned. And he’s wearing his glasses tonight, too… Why doesn’t his stubborn self see a doctor?!? “Where’s he now, Teddy? Do you know?”

“Last time I saw him he was at the gazebo with Ace, Gisella and her dad… but that was about 30 minutes ago.”

“Actually, Ode, I just in my grandmother’s office a few minutes ago, and Tim was in there with my parents, Alec, and others,” Tamzin acknowledge.

“Okay, thanks… I’ll be right back.” She started to walk around looking for the office and on her way there she almost bumped into Christian Vega, who was in town for the holidays and staying with his brother Antonio. “Whoops! Sorry, Mr. Vega. I didn’t see you there!”

“Hehe, it’s alright, Odessa . You seem a bit lost, are you looking for something?”

“Yeah, I’m trying to find Mrs. Davidson’s office in this huge place. My boyfriend is in there with some other people. Do you know where it is?”

“I’ll show her, Papi!” said an over-enthusiastic voice. It was Gisella, who’d come down the stairs. Natalie was right behind her holding the hands of a yawning Alessandro. Gisella gave Odessa a forced smile. “Mom and I were just waking up Alex so that he wouldn’t miss the countdown.”

“Ah, so little man wants to clock out early on us, huh?” Christian said, playfully picking up and tickling his son.

“No, stop!” Alessandro said between giggles.

Just then Evangeline had come into the corridor with the intention of using the bathroom. She, too, almost bumped into Christian. “Whoa! Sorry about that Chris!”

Christian, chuckling, set Alessandro down. “Must be a sign on my back or something. Your daughter here almost ran into me, too.”

“Like mother, like daughter, typical…” Natalie snorted to herself.

Christian gave her a strong disapproving look. “Natalie, don’t you start alright?” he cautioned. The red head merely rolled her eyes. He took young Alessandro’s hand. “C’mon little man, ¿Vayamos el hallazgo su abuelita, bueno? (Let’s go find your grandma, alright?)”

“Okay,” his son answered.

“And ladies, I’ll see you all back at the party,” Christian said, and then he walked away with Alessandro into the large party room.

Natalie was about to return to the party but couldn’t resist giving Evangeline a glare. “Gisella, are you coming?”

“I’ll be there in a second, Mom.”

“Alright then, but don’t take too long... I wouldn't want you to start off the new year around certain people."

“That’s right Natalie, keep influencing your daughter to be as miserable as you.” Evangeline said in response to Natalie’s jibe.

Natalie was about to step closer to her, but Gisella stopped her. “Mom, please?! I’ll see be there soon…” Natalie smirked and back to the party.

“I’ll see you later, ‘Dessi,” Evangeline continued on to the bathroom.

Soon enough Odessa and Gisella were alone in the corridor. “Shall I take you over to the office then?” Gisella asked, her voice full of false sweetness. Wary of her, Odessa only shrugged and they began walking. “So do you have any New Year’s resolutions?”

“Hopefully to stay away from you as much as possible…”

“Ode! That’s not very nice to say! Here I am being cordial to you and you want to make hurtful remarks like that!”

They’d walked to another wing in the house where Odessa could see the home office with glass double doors, up ahead; she stopped movement. “You know what, you’re right, Gisella… I think the best way to prevent future comments like that is by you staying away from me!” she smiled tightly.

Gisella sucked in her cheeks and shook her head. “And here I am hoping that next semester you and I will have some classes together.” Smiling wickedly she stepped closer to Odessa and spoke in a low. “I’ll keep my fingers crossed.” And she walked away.

Odessa rolled her eyes. “Whatever, Gisella…” she muttered to herself. As she continued down the hall to the office she could see in the room were The Boy, Matthew, Christina, Alec and his parents Nash and Jessica, who both had come to town for Christmas and New Year’s. The Boy and Nash were half sitting on the office desk, while the others were either standing or sitting on the leather couches. Deeply intrigued she knocked on the opened door and Jessica waved for her to come in. “Hi all! What’s going on?” Odessa asked.

“Oh nothing much, darlin’. I was talking with Tim about travelling and all of a sudden the conversation turned to foreign languages. He was giving me a crash course in the Italian language.”

“He’s a brilliant young man,” Jessica complimented patting The Boy on the back; everyone else agreed.

“You don’t have to tell me that, Mrs. Brennan,” Odessa proudly beamed, holding in her laughter when seeing The Boy cringe at the commendations. “How’s your winery doing, by the way?”

Nash spoke up. “Very well, thank you. I just had a few people do some pruning done on the grapevines… In fact, that’s why I’m trying to pick up a few phrases from Tim here. Jessica and I are planning on going to Venice in a few weeks. We have some business prospects looking to invest in some American-produced winery markets. So we’ll be going there for about a week few days.”

“And I can’t wait! I loved seeing the country the first time I went,” said and excited Jessica.

“Man! Do you guys have to keep rubbing it in!” complained Alec.

“Aww, I’m sorry honey. You know your dad and I would’ve loved for you and Tamzin to come with us, but it’ll during school and there’s no way I’m allowing any child of mine to miss school like that. Anyway we could always arrange something during the summertime, okay?” Jessica said to her son.

“When was the last time you visited Italy, Tim?” Christina asked.

The Boy was about to answer when a knock on the door happened, coming from Hugh Hughes. “Hey Matthew, there you are! I need to speak to you for--" he abruptly stopped. Odessa glanced to see what – or rather, whom -- he was gawking at. Of course it was The Boy, who happened to be giving him the most chilling glare. Hugh frowned and walked over to him, “Hello, I don’t believe we’ve met before.”

The Boy pushed his glasses up his face. “No, we haven’t,” his voice deadly calm. “The name is Tim,” he extended his hand to Hugh and he accepted.

“I’m District Attor--”

“I know… D.A Hughes,” The Boy sharply interrupted. Hugh frowned again.

Odessa was disturbed by his manner towards Hugh, as she recalled Homecoming night when she and The Boy saw the D.A. from a far distance with Kelly, as well as recalling his tense reaction to Hughes. Everyone else in the room was just ogling at the two, unsure of what was going on until Matthew cleared his throat, breaking the tense moment. “What’s up, Hugh?”

The other man was looking closely at The Boy before answering Matthew. “Uh, nevermind Matthew, it can wait…”

Just then Jack rushed into the office. “Ah, there you guys are! What are you all doing? Ricky and Starr have a huge announcement to make… well according to them anyway. So everyone get your butts out there!”

As everyone was leaving the office room, The Boy was straggling behind them all and Odessa waited for him out the room. “What was that about with D.A. Hughes? You looked like you wanted to kill him or something.”

He looked at her sharply. “What are you talking about, Babes? I barely know the man… C’mon, lets go hear what the big announcement is before we miss it,” and he rushed ahead of a perplexed Odessa.

As everyone had gathered in the party room Ricky and Starr were holding hands, barely able to contain their announcement. Rosie was by their side, with both of her hands covering her mouth. “Okay everyone, as you all know by now that Starr and I have some big news to share!” Ricky beamed.

“Obviously, so spill it already!” Todd playfully chided.

Starr took a deep breath. “Okay… We’re proud to announce that we are--”

Rosie popped. “Going to have another baby!! They’re having another baby!!” A slew of happy gasps filled the room.

“Rosie!” Starr chuckled. “Well, it’s true everyone! Ricky and I are going to have another child. We found out this morning and I’m a couple weeks along!” Todd and Téa were the first to give the expecting couple a congratulatory hugs, and soon others followed suit giving their praises. After all the hoopla died down, Rosie out of the blue, asked an innocent but unexpected question. “Daddy? Mommy? If the baby’s a boy can we call him ‘Tim’?”

Immediately some people chuckled, thinking it was an adorable question, but The Boy’s reaction was different. He’d been sipping on some punch and almost choked on it, coughing roughly. “Whoa! Are you alright there, buddy?” Jack asked, about to pat his back.

The Boy shied away from him. “It’s okay, I’m fine, thanks…” He then gave Téa, who almost looked red in the face, an awkward glance.

“Uh, sweetie, it’s a good idea but we’ll think about that later when the time comes, okay?” Starr said to Rosie.

Meanwhile, Odessa had been staring at The Boy, including a second glance he’d given Téa. Damnit, What the hell is going on with these two?!

“Um, I think I need to get some air for a moment,” and he quickly rushed out back to the lightly snow-covered terrace.

Odessa looked over and saw her father, heavy suspicion apparent on his face. She immediately followed The Boy out back. “I’m gonna make sure he’s alright,” she said to no one in particular. On her way out she could hear Skyler reminding her that midnight would strike in five minutes, so she and The Boy shouldn’t take too long, or they’d miss the countdown with everyone else. Outside she could found The Boy by the small water fountain, his hands clasped behind his head, taking deep breaths. “Tim… are you alright?” she asked in a gentle voice.

He looked at her surprised. “Odessa, you shouldn’t be out here without a coat. I don’t want you to get sick.”

“Don’t worry about that, right now. What was that in there? And don’t play dumb with me… I mean the whole thing with D.A. Hughes, you coughing right after Rosie’s question.” She gathered her courage. “And then there’s you giving Téa weird looks… You aren’t lying to me when you said that you’ve only been with one person, are you?”

He was astounded by the forwardness in her question. “Please tell me you aren’t serious!! Babes, Rosie caught me off-guard, and I’m not lying to you about Hughes! I don’t know the guy. And I can’t believe you’re questioning me about having sex with other people, especially Téa!”

“Yeah, but you have already been with an older woman…” Odessa slipped out.

Now he was taken aback and getting worked up. “Geez! I sleep with one woman, and I get shit for it!”

“I’m sorry, Tim… It’s just that…” she sighed and waited before she began again.

“What? What is it?” The Boy urged.

“Tim, I don’t know what’s going on with you, but I worry sometimes: you overwork yourself; you’ve bruised your ribs and refused to go to hospital for them; you keep getting these random, frequent headaches, like tonight according to Teddy; then there’s this whole glasses thing; your issues with bonding with people and them not liking doing things for you… I could go on.”

The Boy, silent, was watching her intensely. “What are you trying to say to me?”

“Look, I can’t help but feel… no I know that there’s something about you that’s still closed off, and I’m scared that whatever it is it’s going to keep damaging you.”

The Boy slowly lowered his eyes and gave a soft but frightening laugh. “My old man used to say that to me, that I’m nothing but worthless, damaged shit… and I probably am…” He turned away from her. “Is that how you see me, Odessa? As damaged?” tone viciously deep and low.

His sudden mood changes was frightening Odessa entirely and she wanted to run away from there, even though his back was towards hers, but her feet stayed planted. “Wh-what are you talking about with your ‘old man??’ I thought you didn’t know your father…”

Ignoring what she said, he slowly turned around and stared at her. His shocking green eyes were more apparent as they now appeared wild. It was as if he’d become another person. “You didn’t answer my question…” he said his voice unchanged. “Tell me how you really see me.”

“FIFTEEN MORE SECONDS!!” someone had yelled from inside the house

“You’re scaring me, Tim” her voice croaking as her body shivered because of the cold air and The Boy’s frame of mind.


He stepped closer to her. “Go on... tell me you think I’m a complete disgrace and waste of skin just like he thought.”


She shook her head frantically. “Stoppit, alright, just stoppit!! You’re talking crazy!! Why are you trying to put words I never said into my mouth!?!?”


“Why are you’re stalling?…”


And then she blurted it out quickly. “I can never think that way about the guy I’m completely in love with!!”


"HAAAAAAPPPPY NEW YEEEEAAAR!!!” Cheering, celebration whistles being blown and “Auld Lang Sine” from inside the mansion were dominating the air.

The moment her words left her mouth Odessa was in a state of shock. A tingling feeling had overcome her, all due to the fact The Boy had made her panic to the point where she couldn’t help but say what she she’d been subconsciously harbouring, all along.

Whatever crazed spell The Boy was under her he’d broken out of it. He blinked several times. “What did you just say to me?” he asked in a startled whisper.

She knew she’d probably regret continuing but the damage had already been done. She stepped closer to him and put her hand to his face, which seemed to warm-up in the cold atmosphere. “You’re not any of those things that were said to you, Tim, and you’ll never be those things… not to me anyway, because… I love you.”

He slowly shook his head in total disbelief. “Oh Jesus, what have I done…” his voice inaudible. Suddenly, his eyes widened and he backed away from her, grabbing his head. Screaming, he was in an apparent bout of pain.

“Omigod! That’s it!! I’m gonna go get my Uncle Mike or Derek’s mom out here!” She turned to run inside, but The Boy quickly grabbed and stopped her.

“NO! No doctors! I swear to you I will leave town if you get anyone!” he warned.

“Tim, what the fuck?!? Look at you!!”

“Just… just give me a moment… it’ll go away… she’ll go away.”

“She? Who’s she?!?” asked a baffled Odessa.”

He didn’t answer as he fell to his knees, looking down at the snowy ground, and continuing to hold his head. After a few more moments he appeared to be calm and stood back up, but Odessa was spooked as she observed that something about him was amiss. Once again he didn’t appear to be himself, his eyes looking reddened yet fully lifeless. Nevertheless, he noticed Odessa shivering. “You’re cold; you’d better get back inside,” he said almost mechanically.

“No, not without you… and what do you mean by what you've done??”

He looked at her apologetically as he pushed his glasses up. “I didn't mean to scare you, and I didn't mean for...” he stopped.

“Huh? What?!?” she desperately urged.

“I didn't mean for you falling for someone like me… It’s a mistake, it’s not right, and it’s not fair to you… I wish you hadn’t said those words to me.” His tone was soft and still, but the words were everything stinging to Odessa, and she could feel the tears coming. He kissed her forehead. “I’m going home now. I’ll see you later, Babes.” He started back towards the house.

“No, don’t you do this, goddammit! You’re not yourself right now! Don’t push me away, please! What about all those things you’ve ever said to me! What about fate?” she pleaded.

He stopped but didn’t turn to face her. “I blame myself for allowing us to get this far, because I don’t deserve someone like you… and I know I never will. Fate should've known that…”

With her throat choking up, Odessa watched as he walked to the front of the mansion. “Tim!” she barely croaked out. Her body was already feeling cold from being outside, but the coldness was nothing compared to what had just passed between her and The Boy. “Happy New Year…” she said in a small voice. Hearing his motorcycle's engine she was left distraught, confused, frightened, and speechless. Not knowing what to do at that point, it was now her turn in falling to her knees, sobbing away into the dark, early morning of the brand new year.