The rest of the day carried on quite fast. Ponyboy pretty much locked himself in the room from that point on; school started back up tomorrow and there were a few pages of homework he had yet to finish. Sodapop had left earlier in the day to go and visit Sam at her house, nobody knew when he'd be back, but they were certain it wouldn't be until tomorrow. Darry just stayed in the living room and watched television as he called out to Ponyboy describing the responsibilities of having to do his work before hand instead of rushing to get it done the night before. Blah blah blah, Ponyboy had heard this all before, besides, by the time Darry realized that he was doing work, Ponyboy was already finished.

"Hey, Pony!" Darry called from in the kitchen this time.

"Yeah, Dar?" Ponyboy had already escaped the room and made a mad dash for the bathroom. Looking in the mirror, he tried out several different ways he could comb his hair, but none were all that different due to the amount of grease he had slicked through it. He was nervous about seeing that girl tomorrow, and he absolutely wanted everything about himself to be perfect enough for her. Just like she was perfect. And someone who's perfect, deserves nothing less. Even though he was nothing but a hood, he had a career going for him, something that couldn't be said about that many people in his position.

"Soda tell you where he was going?" Darry walked over the bathroom door and leaned against the door, peeking inside every so often; thinking Pony hadn't recognized him.



"Oh. He's heading over to Sam's place."

"I thought she told him to stay away?"

"You think that's going to stop him?"

"No." Darry walked into the living room and grabbed his coat off the couch. "I'm gonna go see where Steve and Two-Bit are. Stay here and don't answer the door to nobody." He then left, locked the door and everything.

Once he heard the door close Ponyboy peeked around the corner that lead to him and Soda's room. Even though nobody was home, he couldn't help but feel like one of the brothers would walk through that door just as he did something wrong. Soda was preferred. With a moments hesitation, Ponyboy gained up just enough nerve to head into his bedroom without glancing at the front door. Quickly, but carefully he began rummaging through some of Soda's things. It wasn't quite like him to be so disrespectful, but…remember, this girl was special. Soda was always great with the girls, and maybe if Ponyboy had a little bit of Soda in him then he'd be able to be just as great. Just maybe.

He grabbed a few shirts, well, one shirt and the one and only cologne that Soda actually owned. Soda liked to go with the real natural smell, so he didn't buy cologne very often. Ponyboy held the bottle up in front of his face, observing it for a moment. The liquid had gone down a considerable amount; Soda did seem to smell a lot better lately. Ponyboy shrugged and pulled the small cap off, dabbing the moist end against his wrist and neck. The smell was overwhelming but sweet; pretty amazing. Once that was taken care of, he grabbed one of the plaid shirts he pulled from Soda's closet and threw it on. The fabric was a bit loose, but Ponyboy was real skinny so he didn't mind looking like he had a few extra pounds on his body.

Slicking his hair back in a better manner, Ponyboy licked his lips and paced around the room. What're you doin', Pony? You know she ain't gonna be there waiting. You know that sneaking out is bad. That you'll get in trouble. What about your homework? What kind of example will you be setting for your kids in the future? You're crazy.

"Yeah, I may be crazy. But….she makes me crazy. And if that's a valid enough reason, then I'd rather be crazy for the rest of my life. Call me insane, because, well, I've lost all my sanity." Pony began talking aloud and chuckled oddly, pressing the palm of his hand to his forehead. Maybe he really was crazy. And not just 'crazy in love'. Crazy. Like, literally crazy. The kind of crazy with no cure. But he didn't care…kind of.

Well, yeah, he cared. But, it was about time he was spontaneous! Did something wild and noticeable. Maybe she liked that kind of thing. He sure hoped she did, because he was about to be as wild as wild could possibly get; if that's even possible. Well, sneaking out wasn't wild but hell, who cares? He sure didn't.

Walking out the front door, Ponyboy pulled on the collar of Soda's shirt, forcing it to cover the back of his neck. It always seemed to be cold outside in Tulsa, and as usual, Pony never even thought to bring a jacket with him. He made his way down to the park, observing as all the street lights passed. Several were flickering and gave no sign of ever being fixed in the future. The government was just to cheap to care about the safety of those here; it didn't matter, it's not like anyone really paid any attention to where they were going anyways. Cold gasps of wind nipped at Pony's ankles, arms, and face as he trudged onto the grass that covered the park land. It wasn't an unfamiliar place, nor was it a friendly place, but it was some place to go, right?

The soles of his shoes neatly dug into untrimmed vegetation, becoming accustomed to the feeling. Ponyboy's body was trembling, not from the cold but from the nervousness. Did he really think that she was going to be there? No. But it was at least worth a try.







Noises echoed from the ground all up until Ponyboy stopped walking. He stood beneath a street light, staring out into the mass of trees that lay just beyond the park. It'd be a real nice spot to stop and look at the sunset some day. Well, besides that, he was really hoping that she'd be there. Maybe she lived in the woods or something, like one f them runaway kids in the books. People gotta get their ideas from somewhere right? It was useless standing there, so he popped a squat on the sidewalk near the grass; didn't want any stains or Darry'd notice.

A few hours past and Ponyboy had crippled into that spot, his butt making a permanent imprint on the sidewalk. His face was tiredly buried into his knees as he held them close to his knees. Life was beginning to dissolve into a pitiful nothing; she had stood him up. Well, not literally, but it felt like she had by the way his heart was breaking. A single tear made it's way down Pony's cheek as he looked up to see someone walking towards him. The figure was carrying shoes and seemed a bit tired, the way it was walking. Pony quickly swiped at the tear that had rolled itself down to his jaw line; ain't nobody gonna see him crying.

"Pony?" Shoes hit the sidewalk as the person jogged up to him, making rough noises as his skin scraped against the obviously painful floor. Warm arms stretched around him as he began to sob, allowing his face to smother into the person's face.

Through gasping breaths, Pony managed to murmur, "Soda, you ain't gonna tell Darry are you?"

"You don't worry about a thing, kid. I got you. Don't cry." The brother began wiping at Pony's face, not only to clear the tears but to keep his cheeks warm.

Ponyboy had been sitting there longer than he originally thought. Thank goodness Soda had found him when he had, otherwise he probably would of fallen asleep where he sat. Pony allowed himself to go limp in Soda's arms as he lifted him off the floor in a cradle position. Soft, soothing, whispers came from Soda as he carried Pony down the street with the shoes rested between Pony's legs. Sodapop was, and always will be, Pony's savior.