John Francis - Chapter 105

Thursday, May 29, 2008 at 9:05 AM
Jon moved through the kitchen and went outside to the greenhouse. Dot and Amanda were deep in discussion about plants and pots and fertilizers and the difference in growing things in Florida versus a greenhouse in New Jersey.

They turned to him as he entered and both smiled as they had been enjoying their discussion. He chuckled when both women at the same time put their hands on their hips, cocked their heads, and said with obvious impatience, “Well?”

“We talked, she knows Amanda is here to stay and she has to choose how much of a role she will play in my life from now on based on her acceptance of Manda.”

Amanda gaped at him. “Oh my god, you didn’t?”

Dot just nodded. “Good!”

Turning to her, Amanda was wide eyed. “Good?”

“Yes, Carol is a terrific grandmother, but she and I have had our moments over the years. Jon often had to step in and talk with her. She needs to know her ‘baby’ is grown and can make his own decisions. I’m proud of you, Jon.”

He smiled at her. “Thanks Dot, and…” he nodded towards Amanda, “thanks for making a new friend.”

They heard the sound of running footsteps then as Jesse came in to see his father. He made his walk a little more dignified as he neared his dad as befitted an almost 14 year old. He smiled at his dad and let himself be pulled in for a “guy” hug, even though he felt he was getting too big for hugs from his ‘old man’.

“Hey Jesse!” Jon’s voice showed his genuine pleasure at getting to see his oldest son. “How was practice?”

“It was great, dad, I might be making first string soon!”

“Alright!” Jon stopped before they continued their conversation. “Jesse, do you remember Amanda from Christmas?”

“Sure, hi Amanda.”

“Hi Jesse, it’s great to see you again.”

Dot gave her son a fond look and then a slight fake scowl. “What? No hug for your mother?” Her tone was light and teasing and Jesse gave her a big hug.

“Dinner’s on a plate for you in the fridge, big guy. Go eat and then visit with your dad, okay?”

“Ok, mom. Dad see you soon. Bye Amanda.” Jesse moved off to get his dinner.

Amanda surprised Jon by turning to Dot and taking one of her hands in hers.

“Dot, thanks so much for making things easier with your children. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it and admire you for it.”

Dot smiled at Amanda. “It’s like we talked about, Manda, kids are a lifetime commitment no matter what else happens. I would be a pretty crappy mom if I put any kind of pettiness before my kids, wouldn’t I?”

Amanda nodded. “I don’t think anyone could ever accuse you of being anything other than a great mom. I have a great mom myself and I know how important that relationship is.” She cocked her head at Dot and smiled at her. “I also know how to recognize a great mom!” She winked at both Dot and Jon and then asked if she could use a restroom. Dot gave her directions and she left the two alone.


After she had left them, Dot turned to Jon. “What do you think your mother is going to do?”

“She’s going to have to accept Amanda, there’s no other choice.”

He looked at Dot and decided to tell her a little of what had happened.

“…I lost her, Dot. She was gone. Richie found her and made me realize what I was doing to destroy both her and our relationship. I won’t allow my mother to do that again. Amanda is what she seems. Do you see it?”

Dot smiled a bit sadly at her ex-husband. “Yeah, Jonny, I do. I really wanted to dislike her, but it’s impossible to do, isn’t it?”

“Yeah, she’s the real deal, an honest, caring person. I can’t believe I got lucky enough to get that twice in my life.”

Dot was warmed by his words as she knew he still cared for her although their marriage was over and they had both had moved on.

“Jon?” He looked at her. “We’re going to have to talk about Eric and my wedding soon. You know that, right?”

“I’m hoping you go for all the trimmings this time. You deserve it.” Jon’s face reflected warmth tinged with loss as he smiled at his ex-wife.

She smiled at him for his understanding. “Yeah, I want the dress, the flowers, the guests, the whole works. The kids will take a part too.” She paused, then asked him, “Do you want to come with Amanda, Jon?”

He was silent for several moments. “Yeah, Dot, I think I do. I’m really coming to like Eric and I want our kids to know you have my full support, so yeah, I think that’s a good idea.”

“Thanks for that Jon, I want the kids to know that too.” Her voice was soft.

They left the greenhouse, returning to the kitchen where they found Amanda. They knew she had waited for their return and again Dot was impressed by her consideration. Calling the kids down to say good-bye, Jon gave hugs and kisses to his children and his mother, and a hug for Dot. Amanda also hugged Dot and gave Carol a smile and offered her hand.

“I hope to see you again soon, Mrs. Bongiovi.”

Carol gave her a small smile. “I’m sure we’ll see each other again, Amanda.”


The driver had been waiting for them and opened the back door as they came out.

“Sorry, Jason, didn’t mean to take so long. After you drop us home, we’re done.”

“No problem, Mr. B.”

A few minutes later they arrived at Jon’s home and he made sure he tipped Jason generously for his long wait while they were at Dot’s.

Taking their bags inside, both gave an unconscious sigh of relief at being back in familiar surroundings. After setting down the bags and hanging up coats and gloves, they could hear a whistling from the kitchen and both broke into grins.

“Hey Rich! We’re back!” Jon called loudly.

“How was the trip?”

“Great! What the hell smells so good? Is Linda here?” Jon yelled back even though they were walking towards that room.

“Nah, gave her the night off from cooking. Knew you guys were coming back tonight and figured you’d at least clean up here even if you were going out to dinner. So…I cooked.”

He shot a glance at Amanda. “Fish, right?”

She giggled then. “You remembered?”

“Of course I remembered and I’m ready to pay up.”

She hugged him then and kissed his cheek. “It smells so good, but don’t tell me what we’re having. I want to be surprised! Do I have time for a shower?” She looked at the men.

“Okay by me, darlin’, need at least 45 more minutes before I’m ready to do the fish.” Jon also nodded and she dashed off to get cleaned up.

Jon remained behind to talk with Richie and catch up. Working confidently around the kitchen, Richie still managed to get a good look at his friend’s eyes.

“Well, hell man, you look a whole lot better!”

“I am better. We had a great trip. I really got a chance to relax.”

Richie grinned at him. “I can see that…mind getting that shit-eating grin off your face?”

“Fuck you, man!” Jon laughed.

“Sorry, bro’, I like girls!” He laughed too, glad to have Jon back and even more glad his friend seemed to be coming to terms with the new choices in his life.

Jon gave Richie a rundown on their time at Tahoe, but provided much more detail about what had happened at Dot’s today, both with her and his mother.

Richie looked thoughtfully at Jon. “I wondered what you were going to do about your mom.”

Shaking his head a little, Jon smiled a bit ruefully. “Guess I gave her a bit of an ultimatum, but I’m not going to have Amanda hurt again in any way that I can prevent.”

“I’m hoping you’re including yourself in that statement too.” Richie’s voice was a bit sardonic.

“What do you mean?” Jon turned narrowed eyes toward Richie.

“What I mean, you ass, is that it wasn’t your mother who hurt Amanda, it was you. She may have provided the ammunition, but you fired the gun.”

Jon pondered his friend’s words for a few minutes and then nodded. “You’re right, dammit! I hate it, but you’re right. She doesn’t deserve to be hurt by anyone, including me!”

“About time you figured that out, you asshole.”

“Yeah, yeah, enough shit, Sambora!”

“Okay, okay, you seem to be listening now, so I don’t need to say anything…but don’t think I won’t in the future!”

Jon nodded. “I’m counting on it. Let me go grab a quick shower too and we’ll be down to help.”

Grinning his wicked grin, Richie said, “Not if you get in the shower with her…” He continued to laugh as Jon shot him the finger as he was leaving the room.


Unfortunately for Jon, Amanda was out of the shower by the time he got to the bedroom. She was half dressed, at least in her underwear, and he moved to her. He kissed her deeply, smacked her ass, and before she could respond he was in the bathroom and had the shower running. She laughed to herself and finished dressing, toweling her hair and putting on warm clothes.

Entering the kitchen, she smiled at Richie and asked, “So what can I do to help, hon?”

“Pour yourself a glass of wine and sit your pretty tush down on that chair there. I need conversation!”


  1. Cathy Says:

    Great 2 chapters, love Dot and Amanda together and how Jon put his Mom in her place. Love Richie, too funny too adorable.

  2. Opester Says:

    “Yeah, she’s the real deal, an honest, caring person. I can’t believe I got lucky enough to get that twice in my life.”

    I really love that Jon said that and acknowledged all that Dot had meant to him in his life! Shows a lot of maturity as well as moving on past the resentment and feeling sorry for himself.

    Good call again on Richie's part too as Jon's behavior hurt far more than any negative evaluation by his mother. Jon really does have a short memory sometimes and difficulty taking responsibility for his mistakes without being reminded-but the fact that he can and does when confronted bodes well for his growth. Now let's see Amanda begin to confront him when he's an ass-Richie needs a break, LOL!!!!!

  3. blackbird Says:

    You know, reading these terrific FFs is always a lot of fun, but I also realize that I'm learning life's lessons along the way.

    Jon is a lucky, lucky man. Not only does he have a past that he can treasure, but also a beautiful future as well.

    And to top it off, they both get along!

    Maybe his mom should read a few of these! ;D

  4. Sandy Says:

    I love the way you describe the relationship between Richie and Jon. I really think that may be the way it is in real life. Great job. Thank you.

  5. jovikitn65 Says:

    The last two chapters had me smiling. About time Jon put his mom on notice where Amanda is concerned. The growing friendship between Amanda and Dorothea is nice to see as well. Richie is just a sweetheart in this story.

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