SUBJECT: Julie's house party
Hiya, long time no see . . . I hope they're not working you to death down there in "the office." I've hardly seen you at all this summer. There's a party at Julie's house tonight so was just wondering if you wanted to go. I don't really want to go on my own . . . anyway I'm sure you're busy in that office doing whatever it is you do so just ring me when you get a chance or e-mail me back.
SUBJECT: Re: Julie's house party
Rosie, this is just quick e-mail real busy. Can't go out tonight, promised Bethany would go to cinema. Sorry! You go and have fun, Alex
Hello from Portugal! Weather here really hot. Dad got sunstroke and all mum does is lie by the pool which is really boring. Not much people here my age. Hotel quiet (on front of postcard) and it's right on the beach as you can see. You would love to work here! I'm bringing home a collection of those little shampoos and shower caps and stuff that you love. The bathrobe is too big to fit into my bag. See you when I get back, Alex
SUBJECT: Catching up?
Heard you got back from your holidays last week, haven't heard much from you lately . . . fancy going out tonight to catch up?
SUBJECT: Re: Catching up?
Sorry have been so busy since I got back. Got you pressie. Can't go out tonight but will drop your pressie by before I head out.
SUBJECT: Re: Catching up?
Didn't see you last night, I want little shampoos ha ha.
SUBJECT: Re: Catching up?
Heading to Donegal for the weekend, Beth's parents have a little "hideaway" there. (That's what they call it.) Will drop your pressie by when I get back.
To the most inconsiderate asshole of a friend,
I'm writing you this letter because I know that if I say what I have to say to your face I will probably punch you.
I don't know you anymore. I don't see you anymore.
All I get is a quick text or a rushed e-mail from you every few days. I know you are busy and I know you have Bethany, but hello? I'm supposed to be your best friend.
You have no idea what this summer has been like. Ever since we were kids we pushed away every single person that could possibly have been our friend. We blocked people until there was only me and you. You probably haven't noticed, because you have never been in the position I am in now. You have always had someone. You always had me. I always had you. Now you have Bethany and I have no one.
Now I feel like those other people that used to try to become our friend, that tried to push their way into our circle but were met by turned backs. I know you're probably not doing it deliberately just as we never did it deliberately. It's not that we didn't want anyone else, it's just that we didn't need them. Sadly now it looks like you don't need me anymore.
Anyway I'm not moaning on about how much I hate her, I'm just trying to tell you that I miss you. And that well . . . I'm lonely.
Whenever you cancel nights out I end up staying home with Mum and Dad watching TV. It's so depressing. This was supposed to be our summer of fun. What happened? Can't you be friends with two people at once?
I know you have found someone who is extra special, and I know you both have a special "bond," or whatever, that you and I will never have. But we have another bond, we're best friends. Or does the best friend bond disappear as soon as you meet somebody else? Maybe it does, maybe I just don't understand that because I haven't met that "somebody special." I'm not in any hurry to, either. I liked things the way they were.
So maybe Bethany is now your best friend and I have been relegated to just being your "friend." At least be that to me, Alex. In a few years time if my name ever comes up you will probably say, "Rosie, now there's a name I haven't heard in years. We used to be best friends. I wonder what she's doing now; I haven't seen or thought of her in years!" You will sound like my mum and dad when they have dinner parties with friends and talk about old times. They always mention people I've never even heard of when they're talking about some of the most important days of their lives. Yet where are those people now? How could someone who was your bridesmaid 20 years ago not even be someone who you are on talking terms with now? Or in Dad's case, how could he not know where his own best friend from college lives? He studied with the man for five years!
Anyway, my point is (I know, I know, there is one), I don't want to be one of those easily forgotten people, so important at the time, so special, so influential, and so treasured, yet years later just a vague face and a distant memory. I want us to be best friends forever, Alex.
I'm happy you're happy, really I am, but I feel like I've been left behind. Maybe our time has come and gone. Maybe your time is now meant to be spent with Bethany. And if that's the case I won't bother sending you this letter. And if I'm not sending this letter then what am I doing still writing it? OK I'm going now and I'm ripping these muddled thoughts up.
Hey Buttercup, you OK? (Haven't called you that for a long time!) I haven't heard or seen you in a while. I'm sending you this e-mail because every time I call by your house, you're either in the bath or not there! Should I begin to take this personally??! But knowing you, if you had a problem with me you wouldn't be too shy to let me know all about it!
Anyway, once the summer is over we'll see each other every day, we'll be sick of the sight of each other then! I can't believe this is our last year in school! It's crazy! This time next year I'll be studying medicine and you will be hotel manager woman extraordinaire! Things at work have been crazy. Dad kind of gave me a promotion so I've more to do than just filing and labeling! (I answer phones now too.) But I need the money and at least I get to see Bethany every day. How's your job as chief dishwasher at The Dragon? I can't believe you turned down babysitting for that. You could have stayed in all night and watched TV instead of watching your hands turn to prunes while you scrape off egg noodles from a wok.
I really miss you Rosie, I miss all our chats and jokes, things aren't the same without you! Mum was asking for you she said she wants you to call around to her. Oh and Sandy misses you too!
It's not because I hate Bethany that I'm not seeing much of you (although I do hate her), it's just that I think Bethany dislikes me just a little. It could have something to do with the fact that a friend of hers told her what I wrote about her in that (not so) private instant messaging thingy in computer class last year . . . I don't think she liked being called a slut, I don't know why . . . some women are just funny like that. But I suppose you already know that she'd heard what I said that day. (Speaking of computer class, Mr. Simpson got married this summer, I'm gutted. I'll never look at excel in the same way again.)
Anyway it's your birthday soon! You have finally reached the grand old age of 18! Want to go out and do some legal celebrating? (Well, legal for you anyway) Let me know.
PS: Please STOP calling me Buttercup!
SUBJECT: 18th Birthday
Rosie, Good to hear you're alive after all, I was beginning to worry! I would love to celebrate my 18th with you but Bethany's parents are taking me and my parents out for dinner to the Hazel. How posh is that??!
Sorry Rosie, another night definitely.
Well whoopdeedoo for you
Fuck her parents
Fuck the hazel
And fuck you
Love your best friend Rosie
SUBJECT: Happy Birthday!
OK then well, enjoy the meal. Happy birthday!
I can't believe this is happening! I was just talking to your mum; called over for a chat and she told me the bad news. I can't believe it, this is the worst news ever! Please call me when you can, your boss keeps telling me you can't take calls during working hours -- QUIT! Mr. I never EVER want to work in an office.
Get in touch with me as soon as you can, this is so terrible, I feel awful!
Dear Mr. Stewart,
We are delighted to inform you that you have been accepted to fill the position of Vice President of Charles and Charles Co. We are delighted that you will be joining the team over here and we look forward to welcoming you and your family to Boston.
I hope the relocation package we offer will be to your satisfaction. If there is anything further that Charles and Charles Co. can do for you, do not hesitate to ask. Maria will call you to discuss a suitable date for you to begin work.
We look forward to seeing you at the office. Welcome to the team!
President of Charles and Charles Co.
SUBJECT: Re: DISASTER!
I'll call you when I get home. It's true. Dad was offered a job doing something that sounds incredibly boring . . . I don't really know, I wasn't listening. I don't know why he has to go all the way over to Boston to do a boring job, there's plenty of them right here. He can have mine.
Oh Rosie, I'm so pissed off. I don't want to go. I only have a year left in school; this is such the wrong time to leave. I don't want to go to a stupid American high school or whatever it is they call it. I don't want to leave you.
I'll call you later and we can talk about it. We have to think of a way that I can stay. This is really bad, Rosie.
SUBJECT: Stay with me!
Don't go! Mum and Dad said that you could stay here for the year! Finish school here and then we can both decide what to do after that! Please stay! It will be so brilliant, us living together. It'll be just like when we were young and we used to keep each other up all night with those walkie talkies! Remember them?!! We used to hear more static than our voices but we thought we were so cool! Remember that time on Christmas Eve absolutely years ago we decided to start a "Santa" watch! We planned it for weeks. I can't remember ever being so excited! We drew little diagrams of the road and maps of our houses just so we could cover every angle and not miss him. You were on the 7-10pm watch and I was on the l0pm-lam watch. You were supposed to wake up and take over from me, but surprise, surprise you didn't . . . I stayed awake all night screaming down into that walkie talkie trying to wake you up! Ah well, it was your loss, I saw Santa and you didn't . . .
If you stay with us Alex we'll be able to just talk all night! Oh it would be so much fun. When we were kids we always wanted to live together, now's our chance . . .
Talk to your Mum and Dad about it. Convince them to say yes, anyway you're 18 you can do what you like! OK if you can't stay with me then at least stay with Phil. Your parents can't say no to you staying with your brother.
I didn't want to wake you so your mum said she would pass this on to you. You know I hate goodbyes and it's not goodbye anyway because you're going to come over and visit all the time. Promise me.
I have to go . . . I'll miss you. Ring you when I get there.
PS: I told you, I was awake that Christmas Eve, my battery just went dead on my walkie talkie . . . (and I did see Santa, I'll have you know).
Good luck little brother. Don't worry, you'll enjoy yourself once you get there and I can't wait to come and visit. I'm twenty-eight years old, married and have two kids and I still feel like moving over with the lot of you. I'll miss you all. It won't be the same without you. Stop worrying about Rosie, her life's not going to fall apart just because you're not in the same country. But if it'll make you feel any better I'll look out for her for you -- she almost feels like my little sister in a way. By the way if Sandy doesn't learn how to control her bladder in this house then I'm sending her over to you on a plane.
We'll miss you,
Phil. (+ Margaret)
SUBJECT: Urgent sisterly advice needed
I can't believe he's gone Steph. I can't believe you're gone. Why is everyone leaving me? Surely you could have "found yourself" a little closer to home? But France? Alex has only been gone a few weeks and I feel like he's dead, which is an absolutely awful thing to think, I know, but it just feels that way . . .
Why did he have to break up with Slutty Bethany just two weeks before, he left? Then I wouldn't have gotten used to him being around so much again. Things really got back to normal, Steph. It was brilliant. We spent every second together . . . literally. We had so much fun!
Brian the Whine threw a going-away party for him just last week; I think it was just an excuse for Brian the Whine to get permission from his parents to have a party to be honest because the two of them never liked each other. Not since that pizza in James' hair incident. But anyway Whine held the party in his house and invited all of his friends and I don't think me and Alex knew anyone in the entire place! The people we did know we can't stand so we left and headed into town. You know that pub O'Brien's where we held your surprise 21st? Well, we went there and Alex had the bright idea of standing outside the door and pretending to be the bouncer of the pub! (There was none on the door that night because it was only a Monday night.) Well he pulled it off anyway because he's really tall and muscley, you know Alex! Anyway we stood there for ages turning people away; I don't think he let one person in. Eventually we got bored and headed inside to the empty pub. Of course me and Alex ended up getting all weepy about him moving away . . . Apart from that the night was brilliant. I miss the times we had, just us together like that.
You wouldn't believe how lonely it is at school these days. I'm just short of getting down on my hands and knees and begging for someone to be my friend. How pathetic. No one really cares. I spent the last few years ignoring them so they don't feel like they really have to talk to me. I think some of them are even enjoying it. The teachers are loving it. Mr. Simpson called me back after class to congratulate me on how well I'm doing lately. It's shameful; Alex would be appalled if he found out I was actually working at school. I'm horrified that things have gotten so bad that I actually pay attention to the teachers. They're the only people who actually talk to me from one day to the next. How depressing.
I wake up in the morning and I feel like I'm missing something. I know that there's something not right, and it takes me a while to remember what it is . . . then I remember. My best friend is gone. My only friend. It was silly of me to rely so much on one person. It's all coming back on me now.
Anyway, sorry for whingeing on and on all the time, I'm sure you have enough problems of your own to worry about. Tell me how my sophisticated big sis is doing over in France. I can't believe you're over there, you always hated French class. At least it's only for a few months right? And then you're coming back? Dad's still not happy about you dropping out of college. Why you had to go away to find yourself is beyond me. Just took in the mirror. What's the restaurant like? Have you dropped any plates yet? Are you going to work there for long? Any nice men? There must be, French men are yummy. If there are any spare men that you don't want, send them my way.
PS: Dad wants to know if you have enough money and if you've found yourself yet. Mum wants to know if you are eating property. Little Kevin (he is so tall now you wouldn't believe!) wants to know if you'll send him some video game over. I don't know what he's talking about so just ignore him.
SUBJECT: Re: Urgent sisterly advice needed
Hello my darling little sister,
Don't worry about Alex, I thought long and hard about it and I've come to the conclusion that it's a good idea he's not there for your final year of school because you know how bad you two are when you get together! At least for the first year EVER you may not get suspended from school. Think of how proud you would make Mum and Dad. (Oh by the way tell them I'm broke and starving and currently looking for myself in an Internet café< in Paris.)
I definitely know how you feel right now. I'm alone here too, but just stick the year out and when you're finished maybe Alex will move back to Ireland, or maybe you can go to college in Boston!
Aim for something Rosie, I know you don't want to hear it, but it will help. Aim for what you want and the year will all make sense. Go to Boston if that will make you happy. Study hotel management like you've always wanted.
You're only young Rosie, and I know that you absolutely hate to hear that but it's true. What seems tragic now won't even be an issue in a few years time. You're only 17. You and Alex have the rest of your lives to catch up together . . . After all, soul mates always end up together. Silly Bethany won't even be remembered in a few years time. Ex-girlfriends are easily forgotten. Best friends stay with you forever.
Take care. Tell Mum and Dad I said hi and that I'm still looking for myself but may have found someone else in the process. Tall, dark and handsome . . .
Excerpted from LOVE, ROSIE (ROSIE DUNNE) © Copyright 2005 by Cecelia Ahern. Reprinted with permission by Hyperion Books. All rights reserved.
Love, Rosie (Rosie Dunne)