Catalina was jolted out of her memories by a pounding on her door. Climbing off her bed she made her across her room, throwing open the door to reveal a grinning Brianna.

"I knew you wouldn't be dressed yet so I came to help you out." Brianna pushed her way into Catalina's room. "Let's see what you've got." Brianna threw open Catalina's closet door and disappeared inside.

Catalina knew that she would only be in the way if she followed Brianna so she returned to her bed, lying on her stomach so she could keep an eye on the closet. Reaching over she turned on her iHome that was situated on the bedside table. Selecting the shuffle function on the iPod she hit play and settled back to watch the fireworks.

As soon as Kickstart My Heart began to play, Brianna popped out of the closet. "How in the world can you listen to this?" She asked, holding her hands over her ears. "There is no way that this can actually be considered music."

"Motley Crue is a classic." Catalina defended as she smirked at her sister. "Besides my room, my music. If you don't like it then you can leave."

Brianna rolled her eyes as she headed back into the closet. "If you don't like it you can leave." She mocked causing Catalina to laugh. "I seriously wonder how we can be related sometimes." She muttered before disappearing back into the awning cavern that was known as Catalina's closet.

Once the Motley Crue song was over, a Johnny Cash song came on and once again Brianna came bounding out of the closet, only this time she actually had clothes in her hands. "Now this is music." She smiled as she laid out the outfits on the bed next to Catalina. "I will never understand your weird taste in music. I swear you go from listening to Metallica to Kelly Clarkson to Nelly to Garth Brooks."

"It keeps things interesting." Catalina shrugged as she rolled off the bed to avoid being buried by clothes. "Besides I like all genres of music so why should I limit my listening to just one?"

"To preserve your sister's sanity?" Brianna held out a black halter dress, motioning for Catalina to try it on.

"There isn't any sanity to preserve." Catalina retorted as she slipped the dress on. Once the dress was settled in place, both Brianna and Catalina stared at it in amazement as it hung loosely on Catalina.

"This dress used to be so tight on you." Brianna commented.

"I don't think any of my clothes in that closet are going to fit me anymore." Catalina remarked dryly. "Guess I should have unpacked, huh?"

"We'll just do it now." Brianna bounded over to the bags that Paul had deposited earlier. Catalina pushed aside the clothes that Brianna had brought from the closet to make room for her luggage. The girls each took a bag and begun to dig through them to try and find something suitable for Catalina to wear.

"What are you wearing tonight?" Catalina asked as she pulled out a pair of jeans.

"I'm not sure. I was going to find you an outfit and then base my decision on that." Brianna pulled out a deep purple dress.

"This is awesome." Brianna breathed. "You have to wear this." She thrust it into Catalina's hands, clapping her own hands as Catalina rolled her eyes at her.

Catalina slipped off the too big black dress and replaced it with the purple dress. The dress had spaghetti straps and two layers. The bottom layer was made of a silky material and fit Catalina's figure perfectly. The top layer was a lighter shade of purple and made out of a gauzy material that allowed the darker color of the bottom layer to peek through. After having Brianna zip her up, Catalina smoothed her hands over the dress as she spun around for Brianna's verdict.

"Wow!" Brianna stared at Catalina. "That dress is…" Helplessly she motioned to the dress. "I can't even think of a word to describe it. Where did you get it?"

"I made it." Catalina looked down at the floor in embarrassment.

"You made that?" Brianna's eyes bulged as she regarded her sister.

"Yeah. I took a sewing class at the academy and this was my final." Catalina looked down at the dress with pride. "I completely designed and sewed the whole thing. I've found that I really enjoying designing clothes."

"You have to design me a dress." Brianna grabbed Catalina's hand excitedly. "Just think, I'll be able to have a totally unique dress for any social rom now on. You can be my personal designer."

Catalina laughed at her sister's enthusiasm and nodded her head in agreement. "I could probably do that but it's going to cost you." She warned.

"Anything you want." Brianna said dramatically. "You can even have my Bentley." She dug in her pocket and held out the keys to her car."

Catalina just shook her head at her sister's playfulness. "I don't want your Bentley." She said as she reached into one of her bags. "But I would like for you to do a favor for me."

"Anything, as long as it gets me a dress designed by Catalina del Harlow, I'll do anything." Brianna grinned as she watched Catalina attempt to control her mirth.

"I would like for you to wear this." Catalina held out a dress similar to hers only done in blues.

Brianna stared at the dress before looking back at Catalina. "Seriously?"

Catalina nodded her head, motioning for Brianna to take the dress and try it one. Brianna took the dress excitedly and slipped it on.

"It fits perfectly." Brianna twisted this way and that as she tried to study the dress after Catalina had zipped her up.

"I had Rose e-mail me your measurements." Catalina stepped back and surveyed her work critically. "You like?"

"I love it!" Brianna nearly tacked Catalina in a hug. "Thank you so much!"

"You're welcome." Catalina laughed as she patted her sisters back. "Think we should finish getting ready?"

Brianna took a look at the clock on Catalina's wall and nodded her head. The sisters began doing their hair and makeup, punctuating the conversation with a lot of giggling. Just as the finished up, they heard the doorbell ring and they knew that they needed to get downstairs. Brianna grabbed a pair of black heeled sandals while Catalina opted to go barefoot as they trooped out the door and down the stairs.

Catalina and Brianna took up post in the foyer and greeted their guests as they came in, both excited to see their friends. Everyone commented on their dresses, asking who the designer was, to which the girls would just laugh and tell them that it was an up and coming new designer but they weren't allowed to reveal the name just yet.

Once most of the guests had arrived, Catalina and Brianna moved away from the doorway, mingling with their friends. The party was a huge success and more people than either one of the girls predicted turned out to help welcome Catalina home. After making the rounds several times, Catalina began to feel the familiar need to get away from people. Catching Brianna's eye, she let her know that she was going to step outside for some air. Making her way through the crowd, Catalina breathed a sigh of relief as she stepped onto the quiet porch. Finding a chair she sat down, pulling her legs up underneath her as she looked up at the clear night sky.

Allowing her mind to wander, Catalina closed her eyes and let a smile cross her lips. For once, she felt happy and content. After several minutes, she heard the porch door open and she twisted her head around to see who was intruding on her alone time. Shocked she made out Zach's features as he stood with a look of defeat on the edge of the porch. Wondering how he had heard about the party, Catalina tried to make herself as invisible as possible, in hopes that he would leave before noticing her. Suddenly she remembered that he didn't recognize her and she decided to use that to her advantage.

"Lost?" She asked amused when Zach's head whipped around as he stared into the darkness trying to see who had spoken.

"Not really." Zach responded hesitantly as he walked towards her. "I'm actually looking for someone."

"Really?" Catalina raised an eyebrow, looking up at Zach when he stopped next to her chair. Even though he stood so close to her, she knew that he couldn't make out her features clearly since she was sitting in the shadows.

"Yeah." Zach ran his fingers through his hair, drawing Catalina's attention to it. She noticed that, while it was still black, he no longer wore it gelled and spiked. Instead it was cut into a short, simple style and fell across his forehead giving him a boyish look. "I messed up a couple of years ago and I really wanted to make it up to her."

"What happened?" Catalina motioned for Zach to sit next to her in an empty chair.

Zach gratefully sank down on the edge of the seat, dropping his head to his hands. "I lost the one girl that I believe I could have truly loved and I'm not even sure how I did it." He picked up his head and Catalina was pierced with his intense green eyes. Inhaling sharply she realized that he still had the power to cause her heart to go into overdrive and she shivered ever so slightly.

"Are you cold?" Zach asked as he noticed her shivering. "Here take my jacket." He slipped out of the light fleece and wrapped it around Catalina's shoulders. When his fingers lightly brushed her bare skin, Catalina couldn't suppress the shudder than ran through her or the goose bumps that raced up and down her arms.

Unwilling to admit that the shiver was from him, Catalina pulled the coat tightly around her, allowing Zach's scent to engulf her. "So what happened with you and this girl?" Catalina asked in an attempt to distract herself from the wonderful feelings radiating through her from wearing Zach's jacket.

"A couple of years ago there was this girl that I really liked back in high school. She was really shy and a little on the heavy side but to me she was perfect, even if she couldn't see it. I would try and talk to her during the school day but things never seemed to go the way that I had hoped and I was beginning to lose hope that I would ever be able to actually convince her that she should be mine. Anyway, there was this school dance and for the first time ever, she actually showed up." Zach paused a moment, lost in thought. Catalina took that moment to reflect on that night also.

"I was so excited, knowing that it would finally be my chance to show her that I was serious. At first her older sister stuck by her side like glue even though I was threatening, cajoling, and bribing every one I knew to ask her to dance. Finally her older sister left and she was alone."

Catalina giggled at the thought of Zach having to force people to ask Brianna to dance. When he looked at her curiously she just waved him to continue.

Zach shot her another confused look before continuing. "Anyway, I took that opportunity to approach her. It actually seemed like I was making some headway. I convinced her to dance with me and, lucky for me, they were actually playing a slow song so I got to hold her in my arms. For awhile it felt like I actually had a shot. When she got tired I escorted her back to her seat and went to get her something to drink. When I got back with the drinks she was gone. I spent the rest of the night searching for her. I found out later that she had left with her sister because she thought I was trying to humiliate her. That was the last time I saw her but I've been searching for her ever since. I can't have her thinking that I just wanted to humiliate her."

Catalina waited for Zach to continue but when it became clear that he was done, she ventured a question. "If you haven't seen her in so long, why are you here now?"

Zach turned to her with a mocking smile. "I actually thought she would be here and I would have the chance to apologize. You see, this is her house and supposedly this is a welcome home party for her but I haven't been able to find her so either she isn't here or her sister warned her off."

"What do you mean by that?" Catalina shifted positions as one of her legs began to fall asleep.

"I ran into her older sister earlier today and asked her to give Catalina my number so that she could call me. I guess that Cat really doesn't want to have anything to do with me." The last part was muttered under Zach's breath as he stood up.

"Listen I'm really sorry for dumping all this on you. My name's Zach Denhardt, by the way." Zach held out his hand.

Catalina looked at his hand, deliberating on what she should do next. Finally she reached out a hand. "Cat." She said simply as she took his hand.

"Nice to meet you…" Zach began before what she said registered. His gaze sharpened in on her as he tried to see through the shadows. "Did you just say Cat?"

"Yes." Catalina slowly pushed herself out of the chair and stepped into the light.

"Hey! You're the girl that was with Brianna earlier this afternoon." Zach commented. "Why didn't you say anything?"

"I wasn't sure I was ready to talk to you yet." Catalina shrugged her shoulders. Turning away from him, she walked over to the porch railing, leaning against it as she stared across the manicured lawn.

Zach followed her, leaning against the railing next to her. "I'm really sorry for the impression that you got of me in high school." He said quietly. "I really did like you for who you were."

"You know…" Catalina looked over at him and smiled. "…I actually believe you."

Gazing into his eyes, Catalina leaned in and finally did something she had wanted to do for a very long time. Gently she pressed her lips against his, letting her eyes slide shut at the multitude of emotions that raced through her. Pulling away she opened her eyes to find him staring down at her.

"What was that for?" Zach's voice was husky with emotion.

"I always wondered what it would be like to actually kiss you." Catalina said in a voice that matched his.

"Was it everything that you hoped it would be?" Zach turned to face Catalina, pulling her into his arms.

"I'm not sure." Catalina said slipping her arms around Zach's waist. "I think I need to try again."

"I'm sure that can be arranged." Zach whispered as his lips descended upon Catalina's for a mind blowing kiss. As Zach's lips worked their magic upon hers, Catalina realized that she truly was home again.

The End

A/N: I hope that you enjoyed the story. This was just a short story I wrote to help combat writer's block. I will have several longer stories posted in the very near future. I am just finishing up the proofing so that I can get them posted. Please add me to your author's alert if you enjoy my writing style and would like to know when I post a new story. Thank you so much for reading!