Autumn's parents, in their very first display of their bigotry, had locked Autumn in her room.
For the rest of the school year, Autumn tried to explain what had happened, but Micky wouldn't listen. The gossip column had a great time with their break upóbut they were the only ones.
After school ended, neither one tried to contact each other. Micky formed a new band, and moved in with them. Autumn resigned herself to college and probably being forced to marry Jon Kildarby. Mick was the first real relationship Autumn had ever had where she'd actually both deeply cared for the guy and was happy with. Neither applied to Jon. Autumn knew that one day she'd lash out at Jon. She wouldn't be able to stop it, either. And every day, he fell more in love, and she grew increasingly unhappy.
It was upon one such thought she was dwelling. She'd made an agreement with her parents to finish college before she "decided" (whether) to marry Jon. She was half done two years of stall time down the drain.
It was late July, 1965. She'd soon return to school, beginning on her third year. Autumn was sitting on the low stone wall surrounding her property, throwing Frisbees for Jon to catch. From her current dismal situation, her thoughts turned toward Micky, which was enough to bring her to tears if she was alone. But Jon was there, and there was no point crying in front of him. Jon would try to comfort Autumn, which was what she really didn't want.
"Autumn?" The call came from her left.
"Micky!" Autumn jumped off the wall and ran to hug him. "Micky, I am so sorry about senior prom. I know you'd been looking forward to it for months, but my parents locked me in my room so I wouldn't go."
Micky had forgotten about all that. "Hey, don't worry about it. I was mad for a while, but I'd forgotten all about that!" See, I told you.
On an impulse, Autumn kissed Micky, and hugged him again.
"Hey, Autumn, I have a new band, the Monkees "
"Anyway, we're playing a gig at the Vincent Van Gogh Gogh tonight. Would you like to come?"
Before Autumn could reply, Jon came up behind them.
"If you wouldn't mind taking your arms from around my girlfriend," Jon said.
"I'll be there at eight," Autumn whispered to Micky before dropping her arms at her sides.
"Who are you, and what are you doing with my girlfriend?" demanded Jon. He attempted to put his arm around Autumn, but she took a step forward and to the right. She pivoted so that she was standing next to Micky, facing Jon.
"Don't answer, just walk away," Autumn instructed Micky. Micky took her advice.
Autumn's parents, Helen and Thomas Carnem, were hosting another dinner party at 6 o'clock that night. They would probably try another stunt like that last dinner party she didn't even want to think about that!
It was 5:30. Jon had gone home at 5, and the dinner party was half an hour away, for those of you who aren't all that great with math. Autumn was already dressed for the party. She was quite surprised to hear a knock at the side gate. Fashionably early?
"Hi!" said Micky when she opened the gate.
"I was wondering if you'd like to go to dinner before the gig. . . ." He looked at her dress and hair. ". . . If you're not already doing something already."
"Nothing important," she said, stepping out of the yard. "Let's go."
Autumn and Micky had a nice time, but. . . .
"It's not the same," they confessed in unison. You'll find they do that a lot.
They laughed. And that.
"You're more of a sibling than a boyfriend," elaborated Autumn.
"Yeah," Micky agreed. "I guess it was just a high school thing."
Autumn and Micky waited outside for the rest of Micky's band, the Monkees, to show up. Autumn suddenly pulled Micky into a tight hug. "Thank you," she whispered.
"Everything. Senior year, this afternoon, today."
Autumn quickly released Micky to tap her ears and make sure they were still functioning properly. She turned around and saw the other three members of the Monkees. Well, not at first. First, she saw a red Pontiac GTO, the latest model. "What a great car!"
"I remember the last time you said that," said Micky.
"Thirty-seven clunker!" they exclaimed in unison.
"What I wouldn't give for that GTO. . . ." mused one of the Monkees.
"Oh, Autumn, these are the Monkees. Mike Nesmith on guitar, Davy Jones on maracas andówhere's Peter?"
Mike looked around. "I think he's still with the car."
"Oh, well, guys, this is Autumn Carnemó"
"Of high school sweetheart fame," finished Davy. Autumn could tell he was from Manchester, England. It was a good thingóManchester was one of the few British accents Autumn could place.
"Yes, we've heard a lot about you."
The expression on Autumn's face told them she didn't think anything good had been shared.
"Oh, no, no," reassured Mike. Autumn detected a western accent. "After the first year and a half, or so, it was all good."
"Oh, that's very reassuring."
"Where is Peter?"
"Here he comes!"
Autumn turned around. "It's my brother." Micky said the next sentence in unison with Autumn. "If I were a swearing woman. . . ."
Mike, Davy and Peter, who'd walked up just afer Autumn turned around, looked at Micky as if he were crazy. "Don't do that," said Micky.
"Bye, guys. Nice meeting you!" Autumn called, without turning around to look at them.
"Autumn, what are you doing here?" demanded her brother, Phillip. Phillip was the oldest of the Carnems, 10 years older than Autumn, who was next in line. He seized her upper arm.
"Ow! Cut it out, Phil, you're hurting me!" Phillip ignored her pleas. Micky was amazed to see his 20 year old friend reduced to little more than a child by her older brother. In spite of her begging, Phillip continued to clench her arm tightly until they reached his car. He threw her in the back seat, got in the front seat and drove away.
"Who was that?" asked Peter.
on to Part Three--I'm into Something Good
Yes, I know they are unusually long titles!