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[Chapter 6]

-- _ _ -- 2 weeks later -- _ _ --

Spending time with Landon made everything a little better for Danika. He made her laugh, which she rarely did and he was just always there if she needed a talk. It was Friday, the last day that Danika would be training Landon because he was able to play once again. She felt a little sad because she suspected that Landon would never talk to her again.

"So what's the deal with you and your mom?" Landon had asked Danika many times but she ignored the issue over and over again.

"She just doesn't act like a mother to me anymore." Danika answered quickly hoping to get off that topic.

"Well, how so?"

Danika sighed, she knew she was going to have to answer him or he would continue asking her. "She just doesn't… she's never there for me, she's always too busy. Those little things that make a mom who she is you know?"

Landon nodded. His mother was everything Danika's mom obviously was not. Ever since he had found out the terrible news, his mother was by his side at all times, helping him keep his head up high.

"Have you tried talking to her?" Landon asked, trying to find out more information. He felt sorry for Danika, she obviously was in need of some parental love, especially the love that only her mother could give her.

"Yeah, well no not really I always push her away." Danika replied as she sighed heavily. She felt bad for her mother yet she felt so angry with her, for never being there.

"Maybe you shouldn't, maybe you should talk to her, I'm sure she loves you." Landon finally said as he smiled at Danika.

"I know she loves me." Danika began but she didn't want to bore Landon any longer so she was persuaded to change the subject.

"So how is that you know the answer to everything, your life must be totally easy and exciting!"

Landon laughed a little, "I wish." He replied. If only she knew. He thought to himself looking down at the ground. He began to think back to that horrible day, all those tears, all that pain and worry. He ran his fingers through his hair as he spotted Danika looking at him.

As Danika looked at him, she saw so much pain. He looked like he was about to cry and nothing could stop him. Up until today, he looked like he was the happiest guy at school, but obviously she was wrong. She didn't want to go into his personal business but she was eager to find out what could be wrong with a perfect person. She looked at the clock and gasped, "Oh my God, I have to get home!" Danika quickly picked up her stuff as Landon stood up to say good-bye.

"Well, this has been the best 3 weeks of training I've ever had, thanks so much." He said as he smiled sweetly at her. He meant everything that he said, for some reason he felt comfortable to speak to Danika, but he just couldn't tell her everything.

"Yeah, it was fun, your very welcome Landon, good luck with sports and life." She said quietly with sadness in her voice. She didn't want these 3 weeks to end.

"Hey, maybe we can hang out sometime?" Landon asked as he saw a huge smile on Danika's face.

"Sure, that would be great! I'll see you around school alright?"

"Yep, thanks… see ya Danika!" Landon said as he walked back into the locker room. He took a quick shower and dressed in comfortable clothes and walked out of the empty school. He didn't have his car so he was ready to walk home when he saw a familiar black BMW pull up next to him.

"Hey Landon, let me give you a lift!" It was Riley.

Landon accepted the invitation, he lived pretty far and he was too tired to walk anyway. Riley's hair was down and it was shining all over. God she's beautiful. Landon thought as he continued looking at her. She was definitely a pretty face but she wasn't the type he could have a conversation with.

"Why are you looking at me that way?" Riley asked as she laughed sweetly.

"Because, well you're really beautiful." Landon admitted. Riley smiled and continued driving. She remembered the time her and Landon went out, it was perfect but he broke up with her telling her that they should remain friends even though Riley knew there was something else.

" Landon… why did you really break up with me?" She asked.

Landon swallowed the large lump in his throat and replied, "Riley I don't want to talk about it anymore okay? We've been through this many times, I've already told you the truth." Riley sighed and came to a stop in front of his house.

"Thanks Riley." He said as he gave her a hug and got out of the car.

"One day you will be all mine again, Landon Donovan!" Riley said to herself and sped away.

-- _ _ -- Next day in school -- _ _ --

"Hey Davina, where's Danika?" Landon over heard someone ask.

"She-She's in the hospital!" Davina cried, holding on to her books. Landon gasped. He couldn't believe what he was hearing. Oh no. He thought to himself as he ran out of the school.

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