Defining Moments Series:

A Resplendent Meeting

Written by:
Day


BILL & TED characters are trademarks of Nelson 1991 Inc. The motion picture BILL & TED'S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE & © 1989 Nelson Films Inc. All Rights Reserved. The motion picture BILL & TED'S BOGUS JOURNEY © 1991 Orion Pictures Corporation. All Rights Reserved.

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1977

It was strange being the new kid.

This, Ted "Theodore" Logan, had decided shortly after arriving in San Dimas, California, and was enrolled into his new elementary school.

Ted hadn't attended any kind of school for very long when his father had retired from military service. His parents had come to the decision that they, meaning his mother, wanted a more stable life for their two children. Military families were often transferred and Ted's mother worried it would be hard for her babies to keep having to leave friends behind and adjust to new surroundings and new people as they got older.

Ted knew his mother had never been all that happy with being so far away from her own family and friends in San Dimas. Though she never complained, he always got the feeling that she had felt isolated and alone around the other military moms on base.

After suffering through a hard labor with his baby brother Deacon, and almost dying from complications surrounding his birth, his mother had finally broken down and confessed her feelings to his father.

Timing was everything.

Too distressed over nearly losing his wife, his father would have agreed to anything. The man had lived and breathed rules, honor, and discipline practically from the womb himself, so this had been a major change from his father's usual attitude and a rare act of spontaneity.

As a result it wasn't long afterward that they said "Aloha" to Hawaii, and for the family to move to California and into the wilds of suburban living.

School was different, but exciting, as Ted had always loved meeting new people. Once he had gotten over the initial butterflies and the awkwardness wore off, he had leapt right into the new situation.

The other kids seemed genuinely interested in him at first. Ted had been popular for the first week or so, but then his newness started to wear off and the other children pretty much left him alone. So now he was plain, ordinary Ted again. And he was fine with that. The only thing he wanted now was a friend.

Like his mother, Ted had an outgoing personality and unbridled enthusiasm so his choices weren't limited. There was, however, a particular boy in his class he wanted to get to know. When he'd first arrived the little boy had drawn his attention by the simple fact that, unlike the others, he had stayed back.

The boy appeared friendly enough. He was always quick to smile, but shy. The other kids didn't treat him like he was the class misfit or anything. They didn't single him out. If anything, the little guy singled *himself* out, as he was quiet and tended to do things on his own.

The child was the complete opposite of Ted, who was anything but quiet or shy. Nonetheless, Ted felt drawn to him. Besides, the kid acted pretty cool in the rare times he'd let his hair down and have fun. The boy seemed lonely and since Ted was lonely too, he thought it was a great idea to get to know his classmate.

Armed with the sack lunch his mom had packed for him, Ted headed toward the far corner of the lunch table. The blond curly haired boy sat doodling on a piece of paper; a neat looking tin Star Wars lunch box lay unopened in front of him.

"Hi! Do you mind if I sit with you?"

Ted's classmate looked up and blinked several times. He then smiled shyly and offered Ted a seat.

"Whatcha drawing there? Is it a dragon?"

The boy shrugged, "It's a horse. A stallion, really." He pointed to the horse's back and moved his finger toward the rear of the animal, "See the mane and tail?"

Ted looked closer at the picture and nodded. "Oh yeah! It's really good! You like horses?"

The boy shrugged as he drew. "I've never ridden one but I'd like to." The child looked up for a second and smiled at Ted politely before lowering his head again. "Do you like dragons?"

Ted nodded his head as he opened up his lunch sack. "I wanna go see 'Pete's Dragon.' It looks like it will be good."

"It is. I saw it when it came out a couple of weeks ago."

"Really? My parents and I really haven't had the time since my brother was born. Plus there was all that packing and unpacking. Did your mom and dad like it?"

The boy paused in his artwork but didn't look up. He frowned. "They didn't go see it."

"Oh, so you saw it with your grandparents?"

His classmate didn't say anything but Ted was getting the impression that the answer was no.

"My mom dropped me off and I went to see it by myself. She says I need to learn to be self-reliant."

"Self-what?"

The boy smiled. "Reliant, dude. It means I need to do more stuff on my own without grownups doing it with me."

"Oh! I knew that," Ted lied self-consciously.

"No, you didn't." His classmate laughed softly as Ted's face turned red from embarrassment. "Don't worry. I didn't know what it meant either until I asked my dad."

The boys grinned at each other and settled into a comfortable silence.

"It looks like my mom packed a peanut and jelly sandwich for lunch today. Not one of my favorites. What do you got? Maybe we could switch. Do you like peanut butter and jelly?"

The boy frowned again. Ted didn't know how to take the other's reaction. At least it didn't seem like his classmate was frowning at him. However, the boy didn't appear very comfortable with the idea either. Maybe he was afraid Ted had cooties or something.

Before Ted could tell him to forget it, his classmate unlocked his lunch box to reveal something out of a Frankenstein's laboratory. Ted's eyes bulged as he took in the mess. He let out an exclamation when an air bubble formed in whatever *that* was and popped. "Whoa! I think it's still breathing!"

The boy laughed loudly before closing the lid to his lunch box. "My mom considers herself a gourmet," he replied.

Ted was taken aback. His classmate looked serious and he didn't know what he could say that was polite.

Before he could think of something, the other boy laughed again at Ted's expression before finally finishing his sentence. "Not!"

Ted sighed with relief. Then he laughed too. "I think I'll settle on my peanut butter and jelly. It looks a whole lot tastier now." He pulled out a container of pudding and a plastic spoon from his paper bag. He handed them both to his classmate who took them gratefully. "Here, ya go. Be careful not to lick the lid. Mom says that's dangerous."

The boy smiled and thanked him. They ate their food while chatting in between bites.

When the bell rang signaling an end to lunch the pair got up together and walked up to the line forming at the door.

As the teacher did a quick head count, Ted turned to his companion. "That was fun. You want to play with me at recess? I could really use the company." Ted paused to think for a second. When he continued, his voice was full of enthusiasm. "We could release your lunch back into the wild!"

The boy giggled at Ted's joke and grinned happily at his newfound friend. "I'd like that." As an afterthought, the child offered his hand for a shake of introduction. "By the way, my name's Bill Preston."

Ted grinned triumphantly at Bill and took his hand. He bounced happily on the balls of his feet. "Logan. Ted Logan."

The two children shook hands. Before letting go, Bill's eyes danced and he leaned forward. "I know," he whispered.

THE END