We need to teach the next generation of children from day one that they are responsible for their lives. Mankind’s greatest gift, also its greatest curse, is that we have free choice. We can make our choices built from love or from fear.
AN.: This chapter serves mostly as an overview of who makes up Generation 9 (at least those with the most relevance for storyline purposes). Get to know them a little bit better, their characters, quirks and attitude towards life and each other.
The eight teens closest in age, ranging now from 14 to almost 18, are a tight-knit group, fast friends, and call themselves “The Cameron Clique”.
By age, oldest to youngest, they make up the group as follows:
The oldest by a few weeks at 17, almost 18. He is the son of Eric and Charlotte Cameron, and lives with them, his grandparents Chase and Shea Cameron and his younger sister Caitlin, as well as two dogs, in the legendary Beach House, first inhibited by our legacy’s generation 1, handed down through the generations and remodeled many times since.
They are simple people with limited funds, grandfather a retired scientist, grandmother a retired writer, father a chief detective in Willow Creek and the mother a homemaker, who sometimes sells paintings.
Jamie would be best described as a dreamer, often absent-minded, and very much into music, particularly the guitar. His best friend is his aging dog Montana. To date, Jamie has dated, but never had a steady girlfriend.
Gavin Zane Cameron
The second oldest also approaching 18, son of a world renown celebrity, the prolific and famous actor Ewan Leif Cameron, and his wife Ava.
Hailing from an already wealthy family – a different branch of the Cameron family tree than Jamie’s ancestors, with wealth inherited through generations, and despite the shared last name, there is little true relationship left worth mentioning at this point between the two main Cameron branches (originating by Blake and Elias generations back), diluted by remarriages, huge age gaps, and half-siblings in the many generations past.
Gavin lives in an impressive, luxurious mansion on a hill fit for someone of his father’s caliber, located next to the Beach House, with his parents Ewan Leif and Ava, his younger sister Courtney Elise and their two dogs Blue and Brandy.
Despite having been born with the proverbial silver spoon in his mouth, Gavin is very grounded, but even at 17 already laser-focused on reaching his own greatness in life, through hard work and determination, striving for a career in law and one day owning his own, fancy practice. He considers Jamie his best friend. Gavin had countless girlfriends by now, but all have been only brief relationships.
While he never really opens up to most, he has told Jamie that he has trust issue with strangers, due to his father’s fame and wealth, always leaving him to wonder about every new person’s true intentions.
Gavin’s cousin, also 17, he lives in another impressive home, the Cameron Estates, which flanks the Beach House on the other side across the beach, which he shares with his parents Lucas and Lucy Cameron. He is an only child, also grew up wealthy, but remained grounded.
Like his cousin Gavin, he already has very clear future plans about college and life after, and with his father’s help planned his next steps to ultimately lead him to manage one of his father’s companies.
Jordan currently is Blakely Johansson’s boyfriend.
16, and another cousin to both Gavin and Jordan, and the only one of the eight who does not reside in Brindleton Bay, but in Willow Creek, where he lives in a nice, large home with his parents Caden and Veronica and his younger brother Cody (12).
A gamer and self-proclaimed computer nerd, something he wishes to eventually turn into a career down the road.
The only thing that really gets him out of the house on most days, is hanging with the other Clique members and the only reason CJ is even a part of the Cameron Clique is because his cousins Gavin and Jordan.
CJ had a girlfriend in the past, but is currently single. He is interested in Caitlin Cameron, but has yet to make a move.
Also 16, she lives with her parents Sven and Hannah, younger brother Jonah and dog Noisette in a sweet Scaninavian style home just outside the old downtown of Brindleton Bay, near the docks and pier, where her mother runs a small seafood style restaurant.
Her father was born in Sweden, which influenced her upbringing to a small degree, regarding taste and liberties – as well as appearance. She is very close with her grandparents and parents, but ever since toddler age had a bit of animosity and jealousy towards her younger brother, which she never fully outgrew.
Independent Blakely loves life and fun, has an outgoing, strong personality and is well liked among her peers and in the community.
She has dated a lot, but currently has her first real boyfriend in Jordan Cameron.
Courtney Elise Cameron
Younger sister to Gavin, also 16, but despite her model-like natural beauty, she is a lot more serious about life than the others. Like her brother she already has very clear ideas about her future and has been working to assure her grades and performance in school allow her to fulfill them as planned.
While she has been out on dates, she has not shown true interest in a steady relationship, even though she likes to go out and flirt, which she does exceedingly well, but to her it seems more a testing of her skills thing, rather than out of true interest. Making out with a few lucky guys has been as far as she seems to be willing to take it. Like her brother she is quietly cautious about strangers’ true intentions, due to her father’s fame and their family’s wealth.
A daddy’s girl, her dream is to follow in his footsteps by studying Economics, to later potentially become an entrepreneur of some sort. Level-headed and strong-willed, with a pronounced go-getter attitude would be her best descriptions. She seems older and more mature than her peers even though she is one of the youngest of the group.
The polar opposite to his bubbly older sister Blakely he has always been a quiet child, you could even call him shy.
In kindergarten he became best friends with Jamie’s younger sister Caitlin and the friendship has lasted the years, every bit as strong now at 15 as it had been.
He always loved helping his mother cook and bake, even as a toddler, which has since grown into a hobby.
Without it ever being truly discussed, it has been clear all along that he will one day run the family restaurant with his mother.
When not in school or with the rest of the Cameron Clique, he is usually found at his mom’s restaurant or at home, either in the kitchen trying out recipes, or in his room playing computer games unless he is hanging out with Cait, whom he has a secret, yet unfortunately unrequited crush on.
The youngest of all at 14 (almost 15).
She is a sweet, quiet child, optimistic, polite and always trying to help others. She likes reading, especially romantic novels, revels at romantic movies, dreaming of one day finding her own Prince Charming.
She and her brother have a close bond with each other and their family, and she enjoys spending time with them as much as with her friends, particularly her best friend Jonah and his sister Blakely, whom she quietly idolizes, wishing she looked like her and were as outgoing, confident and as popular as her.
Totally oblivious to Jonah’s romantic feelings for her, she instead has a major crush on CJ McNeill, fueled by him flirting with her at one of the most recent get-togethers, but she is too timid to act on it. Due to her tender years, she has not yet dated at all.
The following are excerpts from the teens’ days are not in chronological order, just small tidbits highlighting their characters, hopes, dreams and plights.
The Johansson’s home, inhibited by Sven & Hannah and their teens Blakely and Jonah, plus dog Noisette.
Caitlin was standing by the window.
“You really have the best room. I always loved this view, it’s just so perfect, no matter the time of day or weather. Even when it’s pouring down rain. I swear right here is my favorite place – ever.” she sighed.
“Yeah, it’s pretty cool, but definitely not anything like Gavin’s at their gigantic sick luxury mansion right by the cliffs with the private beach and all. And probably not even better than CJ’s.” the latter bit was added with barely-there disdain.
CJ used to be okay in Jonah’s book all the way up until he started liking Caitlin a little too much. And she him. Ever since that started, CJ had been off Jonah’s holiday card list for sure.
“Nobody has a home like Gavin, Courtney and their parents. That’s so outrageous, it doesn’t even count. And I dunno about CJ’s room. Never seen it. Have you?” Cait said now.
Her reply caused him to smile inadvertently. So she had not been to his house. Phew!
“I have. It’s okay. Just okay, nothing special. From his window you only see asphalt, trees, their neighbor’s mailbox and trash can. You’re not missing anything, no need to go look. Ever.” he quickly downplayed it, hoping to extinguish any interest she may ever have had.
“I loved Jordan’s though. That entire house is dreamy!” Cait swooned, ruining Jonah’s momentarily high.
“Why were you in Jordan’s room?!” he asked, alarm bells shrilled in his head along with a sudden pang of jealousy. Another guy creeping in on her?! His sister’s boyfriend at that?! WTH?!
“Well, because Blakely forgot her homework there. They went to his house after school and worked on it together, then she came to hang with me after, noticed she forgot her binder, so I went with her to get it.” Caitlin explained and sat down on his bed, then let herself fall backwards, giving Jonah odd feelings all over. A girl, THIS girl, Caitlin, literally on his bed. He carefully climbed onto the bed as well, next to her. If only he were braver …
“Blakely was in his room?! Like alone?! Were his parents there?”
“No, dummy, originally they did homework together downstairs. She left without it and their maid put it in Jordan’s room, and when we both went back to get it, he invited us up. And yes, both parents were in the living room and knew we went up. So chill. Totally harmless, no need to alert your mommy and daddy. Blakely’s not like THAT. And besides, I am in YOUR room unattended.”
“That’s different. We’re different. And I don’t know about Blakely anymore. She borrows mom’s car all the time and never tells me where she goes, let alone take me with. Just always bites my head off, even in front of mom and dad. You’re probably gonna be like that too when you turn 16. Forget all about me …”
“Hello? You’ll turn 16 long before I do and how could I ever forget about you, Jonah? You are my bestestest best friend in the whole wide world. I’d forget my own name before I forget you.”
Her words made him feel special and at the same time filed in the wrong cabinet. He wanted to be the besteststest BOYfriend, dammit! Just how, without ruining everything and humiliating himself in front of everyone if she didn’t like him like that? He just wasn’t wealthy like CJ. All his family had was a small restaurant by the pier. Whoo-dee-doo. And other kids laughed about him, because he liked to cook and bake. Even his own sister. But not Cait. Never had she even teased him about it. On the contrary, she always seemed impressed when he had her try something new he made.
“I wish mom and dad would let me spend the night.” Cait said now.
“Why don’t they?” he asked absentmindedly, sitting next to her, his heart beating out of his chest.
“Because every time I ask, all I hear is ‘you literally live 10 minutes apart, you can hang out and sleep in your own bed’. Adults, I swear. They just don’t get it. Too much dust in their old brains.” Cait rolled her eyes.
“Seriously.” he agreed.
A moment of silence fell between them, Jonah began to slowly inch his hand closer to Cait’s, when a sudden knock on the door, scared them both, causing them to jump up.
“Knock, knock! Are you dressed and decent, weirdo?!” they heard Blakely ‘s voice from outside his room.
“Duh! The door is cracked and Cait’s here.” Jonah called back, and Blakely entered.
“Oh good. Don’t want to walk in on you doing who knows what to yourself, you little creep.”
“I don’t! Ever!” he blushed deeply, panicked what terrible things Cait might think of him now. Dammit Blakely!
“Yah, right. Hey Cait. So, I had this idea. The new ‘Covert Men’ sequel is premiering tonight. What do you say if I get the car from my mom so Jordan, CJ, you and me can go see it?”
“What about me!?” Jonah complained.
“Uh … sure .. we totally need the literal fifth wheel. How about no, Jonah?”
“I just want to see the movie …” he argued. It was a half-truth. The movie sounded interesting, but he wanted to be there because of Cait. And that CJ. Better he was there, maybe he could avert the worst.
“Personally, I hope I am gonna miss most of it .. hint hint … Jordan is such a good kisser.” Blakely swooned, giggled, nudging and winking at Cait.
“Gross!” Jonah said, frowning.
“Well, YOU don’t have to kiss him. Just stay home and cook something with mom. Or learn knitting, sewing and start an herb garden or whatever, you fairy.” Blakely retorted annoyed.
“Blakely, poor Jonah! I’ll go, if he can come.” Cait determined and Jonah felt relief, even though he still was uncomfortable and humiliated.
“Fine. We’ll take him, but only under protest. Try to act like a normal human being, you dork, and if you rat out anything you see to mom and dad you are DEAD! Got it?”
“Ok, Cait, we need to raid my mom’s closet. She has super-cute dresses – and let’s face it, she won’t need them anymore at her age. But we do!”
“Hey! Cait was hanging with me! Blakely what the hell!?” Jonah complained vehemently.
“Yeah, well, you’ll live, you creepo. And if not, even better. We got important things to plan, so you just play on your computer, nerd.”
Jonah protested, Cait shrugged back at him while Blakely dragged her along to her parents’ bedroom to get said clothing, ignoring her little brother, who looked deflated.
The Cameron’s Beach House, shared by grandparents Chase and Shea Cameron, parents Eric and Charlotte Cameron and their teens Jamie and Caitlin, plus two dogs.
“Fine, I don’t care. Just pick something for me and I’ll do it.” Jamie shrugged, disinterested.
“Jamie … this is YOUR future. You need to pick something you want to do, something you’ll be happy with. Dad and I want to you to follow your dreams.” Charlee said gently.
“Except music!” Eric interjected.
“Dad … All right, already. I got it. Music is not an approved career path in his house. Copy that!” Jamie groaned slightly annoyed.
“Son, I am telling you from a place of having been there – I love music as much as you do, but it is not suitable for a career. Not for us. We are simple folk and just not made for the stage. It takes a very special type of person to put themselves out before people and perform, unfortunately the performers are on Ewan’s side of the family tree and even he has mostly retired from it.” Eric tried to reason.
“Yeah – because of Ava … ” Jamie argued.
“Maybe, but no matter the reason. Whatever you think it is like, it is not. People can be judgmental and cynical a-holes and everyone’s an expert when it’s you up on that stage, kid. Music producers are even worse. For every bone you get thrown, you went through tons of heartbreak, and all to barely scrape by. You need a real career. So, think about what you like. You have good grades, there must be some subjects you enjoy.” Eric told his son.
“I have good grades because as soon as I get home from school I usually have at least, one, sometimes two, if not four people hovering over me to do my homework and making me study. It’s like a school boot camp here, with you guys, grandma and grandpa”
“We do that because we love you, honey, and only want the very best for you.” Charlee said softly.
“And I endure it because I know that and because love you guys back. I don’t know, maybe you could get me signed up for a police job, or however you get into it, dad.”
“No, honey, not like that. Joining the police force is a big decision, not one you make like this. Dad and I will take you to a college fair, there is one coming up next weekend. We’ll go and check things out, you can talk to a few people, see what speaks to you. We should have done that last year, but really thought you’d come around on your own.”
“Fantastic, sounds like a total thrill ride. So, is this grilling session over now? Can I please go somewhere where people are not trying to torture me? I wanted to meet the others at Everett Heights.”
“Off with you, you drama queen!”
Jamie jumped up and left the room in a hurry.
“Hm, that was a lot easier than I expected. Surprisingly painless.” Charlee remarked.
“You think he will really listen to us?” Eric wondered.
“He said he would. Jamie’s not the behind the back type. If he had a problem with it, you know we would have heard about it. He would not have just sat there and let it wash over him. Guess we just raised really good kids. Maybe our reasoning resounded with him.”
“I feel a little guilty though. He seems to want nothing more than music. Poor kid. I hope I didn’t just shatter his biggest dream. But you and I both know it’s for the better, I really want to spare him from what I have been through on stages. I do admit I am pretty disappointed that he has put forth so little consideration for his own future. He’s like a leaf in the wind. Even his sister already has plans, and she is not even 15 yet.”
Before Charlee could answer Jamie reappeared.
“Uh, just wanted to tell you that you two are really the best parents anyone could ever …”
“Just take the car keys, Jamie.” Eric rolled his eyes, cutting off his son. He knew where this was going.
“Awesome! Thanks, dad! Bye guys!”
“Drive safe honey! No alcohol! And call if you’ll be gone past midnight. And also call if you end up drinking alcohol … accidentally! We won’t be mad, just want you safe!” Charlee called after him.
The slamming of the front door confirmed Jamie was on a mission.
“Yeah, if he had a real issue with our decision, we would know for sure. Maybe he’ll get inspired at the college fair.” Eric smirked.
Brindleton Bay’s Blake Cameron High School
“Uh – Cait, I was wondering if you had any plans for … well, what I mean is, in two weeks is senior prom and I was hoping you would be my …. uh … my date?”
Caitlin could barely stifle her enthusiasm, even though she tried. He was so close, SO SO close, and he just asked her, HER, to the senior prom! Did she die and go to heaven?!
“YES! Of course I’ll go with you. Totally! Yes.” she nearly breathed the words out.
They went to their respective classes after that, but Cait was on a high all day.
“Mom! I know we don’t have much money, but I HAVE TO have a prom dress.” she told her mom as soon as she got home.
“What? Baby, you have lots of time till graduation! You are a freshman.” Charlee stopped what she was doing in the kitchen, one look at her beaming daughter with that far-away look in her glazed over eyes along with the tattooed on smile told her everything before her daughter did.
“CJ asked me to senior prom! I am going with an older boy. To senior prom. Mom, this is huge! I need a dress! A super-ultra-mega-special one!”
“All right, all right. I’ll take you to the mall on Saturday and we’ll get you a dress.”
“Can Blakely and Courtney come?”
“Of course! We’ll go get you a lovely dress that will knock him off his feet, my little big girl you.”
“Yay! Best mom EVER! This is so exciting. I love you so much, mom!”
Charlee just smiled. Other parents might be sad or frightened seeing their little girls grow into young women before their eyes, over the moon because they had a boy interested enough to take them to one of the most important rites of passages in any Brindleton Bay teen’s life, but not Charlee. To her, this meant she was able to grant her daughter the things she herself had been denied, and secretly thanked her husband Eric for having been her rock when she needed him most, when most others would have walked away, so that she could experience all these things with their kids.
To Charlee, it was all just magical, not scary.
Cameron Estate by the cliffs, Lucas and Lucy Cameron’s home with their son Jordan
Jordan and Blakely were sitting on the floor making out on the patio.
They had been a couple for several months now, and enjoyed time alone to be affectionate. He had been her first time, and she his, some weeks ago, when she snuck out at home and Jordan smuggled her into his room at night – and back out before the following sunrise, even walked her home that day.
Jordan’s parents were both home currently, but gave the young couple privacy, while still being near enough to keep tabs on the teens.
“I cannot wait till I am 18.” Blakely sighed once they came up for air.
“Same!” Jordan agreed, while trying to see through the glass reflections of the patio door to see if his mom might be checking on them again.
“My parents are great, but man, when they go into full parent mode they are ridiculous. And that weird brother of mine. I swear that little creep is gay.” Blakely told him.
“Jonah – gay? Are you sure? Not the reading I got from him. Little different, maybe, but gay? Pretty sure he wouldn’t get so nervous around girls if he were.”
“Oh come on. Which normal 15 year old boy likes cooking and baking, never had a girlfriend, never even a crush that I know of, I told him a few times to just rip the Band Aid off and come out, but he just about curled up in the fetal position and locked himself in his room. Bet he just doesn’t want to disappoint my dad, he has all this stuff in his head about ‘carrying on the Johansson name, grandkids, blah blah …’. I mean, what’s so cool about that name?”
“I like how it sounds. And it suits you. You look totally Scandi. Like a Swede.”
“Well, my dad and his family were born in Sweden, so no surprise there.”
“My family’s heritage is Scottish and Japanese. What a mix. If we had kids they’d be totally hygge drunkards but super-tidy and excel at Math.” Jordan chuckled.
“Uh – first of all, you are half-Japanese and still suck at Math. So much for prejudiced opinions. And Kids? Whoa!”
“Just saying … theoretically.”
“Yah – hello?! I am 16, you’re 17.”
“I know. I just meant, if we were older and married and all.”
“Married? Did you hit your head or something?”
“Why? Is this really such a weird topic? I mean, we’re a couple, we love each other … just talking about our future.”
“I don’t know, Jordan. I mean, you are my first real boyfriend. I have almost two years left in high school, and then the next huge step after graduation in all our lives will be college. I want to focus on experiencing all that to the fullest, not cram all day and night and then worry about weddings and mortgages. Not for at least 10 more years at the earliest. And kids is a really big question mark.”
“Well, I am my parents’ only child. Marriage was in my five year plan. Or at least a solid relationship with a future that could eventually lead to marriage down the road. And I definitely want a child, and while I am still young, so I can enjoy it. My dad talks about his dad having him so old and feeling like he was cheated out of time with him because of it. I want to be there for all the big events in my kid’s life. I never even met my grandparents.”
“Okay … but don’t you think 17 is a big young to even think about that, other than how to prevent all that from being necessary?”
“Blakely, I really thought we had something strong here …”
“And I really thought we were young and having fun here …”
“What exactly do you mean by ‘having fun’? Are you talking to other guys?”
“No. But I may, if you keep this marriage and kids talk up. Seriously, that is NOWHERE on my radar. Truth be told, it may never be. I just cannot see it, stuck with the same guy for the rest of your life? I mean, if it works out that way, cool. But how do you know going in, right?”
Cameron Mansion, shared by Ewan Leif and Ava Cameron with their teens Gavin Zane and Courtney Elise.
“Sooo … law? Really?” Jamie asked, spread out on his best friend’s bed.
“Yeah. Dad always tells me I can be some argumentative, judgmental prick, might as well put that to good use while putting my name on the map for reasons other than who my father is – and rake in some big time dough if I get the hang of it, right?” Gavin laughed.
“Right. My parents are dragging me to a college fair next weekend to finally figure out what I want to do with my life and get some applications out, like super-last minute. I was gonna skip that whole university thing, but when I just hinted at that, my parents and grandparents looked like I pulled a gun on them, so I glossed over real quick. They apparently have been saving ever penny they could to send my sister and me through college, no way I can tell them ‘thanks, but no thanks’ now. Just haven’t the first clue. I literally do not know what I want to do for the rest of my days. Parents already nixed anything to do with music and arts which was pretty much all I got. Maybe I should do law too … think I would be any good at that?” Jamie wondered.
Before Gavin could answer there was a brief courtesy knock on Gavin’s door, and his younger sister Courtney entered.
“Uh – you know normal people knock and wait for someone to yell ‘come in’ before just busting in. I could have been naked.” Gavin told her grinning.
“Well, I knew Jamie was in here with you, so if you were naked, I would really be the least of your problems, Gav, and Jamie would probably be scarred for life by now. Jamie, would you mind looking at that damn computer again? It’s doing that thing again, like last time.” Courtney’s tone changed ever so slightly when she addressed Jamie.
“Yeah, sure …”
He got up and trotted after Courtney into her room, sat down at her desk and clicked around a little.
“You are so smart … I am just such a noob if it comes to computers.”
“I can teach you some stuff. I mean, you’ll need to be able to use your laptop when you study Economics.”
“I’d like that a lot. You could come over after school one day and really get down deep into everything with me.” the way she said that made Jamie hot under the collar, it took everything he had to play it cool.
“And there you go. All better again.” he said, avoiding to look directly at her.
He got up and she was very close to him. Like right there.
“Thank you, Jamie ….” she purred into his ear, he could smell her perfume, the freshness of her hair … felt her hand on his shoulder, his knees starting turning into pudding. Damn, she was gorgeous. He could barely even remember how to breathe anymore.
“Uh … welcome …” he stuttered as Courtney gently and briefly ran her hand across his cheek, which triggered all sorts of unwelcome reactions from his body.
He turned quickly and hurried from her room.
“Bye Jamie …” she cooed after him, followed by a slight giggle.
Jamie didn’t go back to Gavin’s room, which was located right next to Courtney’s, but instead straight into the downstairs bathroom, locking the door behind him, then splashing cold water on his face, while waiting out the most visible and noticeable reaction his body had to her model-like beauty and seductiveness, that seemed to come as effortless and natural to her as breathing.
Gavin may be his best friend, but if he had any idea that Jamie was battling an erection right now because of his younger sister, it would not go over well! Gavin could have a pretty bad temper, if warranted. And guy code warranted it in this case.
Everett Heights Park