John Francis - Chapter 66

Wednesday, May 7, 2008 at 7:48 PM
Speaking quietly, Richie said to Jon, “We’ve got a rat, buddy.”

“I know it man, the stories are worse than the truth. There was no press there tonight, so who told Matt there was? Also, Manda did nothing at the party, so who told stories about her behavior?”

Richie grimaced menacingly. “I don’t know, but we’re gonna find out.”

Jon’s phone rang and he looked at it, then handed it to Richie. “Not now, okay?”

Richie answered the phone and told Matt that they had found Amanda, but tonight was not a good time to talk. He held the phone away from his ear and whispered to Jon. “Shit, he’s trashed.”

“Call Teek and get him to call Matt’s wife and give her a head’s up, then ask if one of the guys will make sure he gets home okay? Thanks, man.” Jon nodded at his friend. Richie took care of the phone calls, filling in Matt’s wife himself instead of asking Tico, since Tico was going to see that Matt got home.

Amanda had fallen asleep once the warmth of the coat and Jon’s body heat soaked in. She was emotionally exhausted and as she slept, the men talked quietly.

“Why don’t you stay over tonight, Rich? It’s late, why wake your mom up?”

“I think I’ll take you up on that. We need to do some brainstorming tomorrow anyway. I don’t like living with a rat, especially someone who would go out of their way to hurt Amanda like that.”

They both looked at each other with that thought. “How many women we have on the staff?” Richie asked. “Not sure, but I’m gonna find out.” Jon’s voice was grim.

~~~

Not much later, they arrived at Jon’s home and Amanda woke up. For a few moments she smiled sweetly at Jon and then Richie, but within seconds everything came back. She moved towards the house, but stopped as she didn’t have a key. Jon thanked the driver profusely for his help and tipped him generously. Jon turned to see Amanda standing there.

“Honey, go ahead inside, it’s cold out here.”

She replied without turning, “I don’t have a key.”

Jon mouthed “FUCK!” to Richie.

Hurrying over, Jon opened the door and got her inside. She said, “I would really love some coffee. Anybody else?” Both agreed and she went into the kitchen to get a pot started.

Jon went to the sideboard where he kept a few bottles of Jack and poured a double shot that he downed in a single gulp. He poured himself another double and repeated it. He then offered Richie a glass.

“I’ll stick with the coffee, but thanks.”

Jon started to pour another double, when Richie reached out gently to stop his hand. “She might need you tonight and you’ll want to be there for her, right?” Jon capped the bottle and slapped his friend on the shoulder. They entered the kitchen.

Amanda was getting cream and sugar out for the coffee and setting mugs on the table. She turned to look at the two men as she had something to say.

“I want to tell you both something. I’m not going to run away any more. For the last year every time something got too hard or I hurt too much I tried to run away from it. I’m done doing that. I might walk away for a few minutes, but I won’t disappear. That was a really crappy thing to do to friends.”

Both men were listening intently to her.

“What your brother said really hurt, Jon, but after my self pity moment passed, the first thing I thought about was you and your kids. I don’t want to do anything that would hurt either one, so we’re going to have to figure that one out.”

Jon started to speak, but she held up a hand.

“Jon, I truly love you, and Richie, I love you as a friend, one who grows closer to me every day. I was hurt so badly by my husband’s death that I shut people out, thinking that if I didn’t care too much about someone I couldn’t be hurt too badly when they left. I’m also not going to do that any more. I’m going to stop being afraid.”

She met his eyes then, “Jon, you have me for as long as you want me.”

Richie looked at her and saw she meant what she said. He looked at Jon and again, as had happened the very first night, he thought ‘Whatcha gonna do, bro?' He knew what he would do if Amanda loved him the way she did Jon.

Smiling at Amanda, Richie couldn’t resist. “Does that mean you’re keeping me too?”

Looking at him with eyes as dark as his, she replied, “Did you really have to ask?”

3 comments

  1. Opester Says:

    “I want to tell you both something. I’m not going to run away any more. For the last year every time something got too hard or I hurt too much I tried to run away from it. I’m done doing that. I might walk away for a few minutes, but I won’t disappear. That was a really crappy thing to do to friends.”

    I'm so glad to hear Amanda say this and I really like that she realized that she needs to change some too. This relationship is just what a good relationship ought to be-one that prompts and nurtures growth in the other as they want to become better for the other person!
    I also loved Richie's little comment there at the end and how he used Jon's line a little differently when he asked Amanda if she's keeping him too! You always leave me with a smile on my face, Sunstreaked!

  2. I knew I should have read one more chapter before commenting. That's the Amanda we want to see, and what Jon needs. Nice job. Nd hell yeah, keep Richie too LOL

  3. jovikitn65 Says:

    Lol yes Richie she is keeping you as well. Nice to see Amanda realizes what running away solves, nothing. Jon you and Richie need to find out eho the rat isthat leakedinfo to Matt. After you find the rat call the exterminator..fast.

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