John Francis - Chapter 107

Sunday, June 1, 2008 at 10:41 AM
Amanda shooed the men out of the kitchen so she could clean up dinner dishes. Richie and Jon moved into the living room where they sat with glasses of wine. Looking at Jon, Richie spoke, but kept his voice low.

“What’s the plan, bro’?”

“After Dot. Not gonna steal her thunder.”

“You asked yet?”

“No, not yet.” Jon eyes asked silently for Richie to keep this to himself. “I hurt her again, Rich. Now I’m even less sure she’ll say yes.”

Richie nodded. “You’ve got to talk to her before you do things. I mean, even this ‘hiring her’, she needs to know first. She’s not Dot, Jon, she expects to have a real partnership with you and you’re too used to everyone just falling into line when you make decisions.”

“I know, it’s a big problem for me. I am used to that and Dot just went along with it because she was so separated from my work.”

“But you want Manda with you, right?” Richie wanted Jon to put into words what he was thinking.

“Hell yeah I want her with me. But it feels like I’m learning a whole new way to live.” Jon sounded both plaintive and a little put out.

“You are learning a whole new way to live. But, was the old way that great?” As usual, his friendship with Jon allowed Richie to quickly cut to the heart of a situation. “The old way worked because of Dot being the way she was and then the kids. Amanda isn’t Dot, Jon, she’s used to sharing her life. I don’t think she’s going to accept less than that from you, not for long anyway.”

“I hear you and, no, the old way wasn’t that great and I think that’s what broke everything down. It took a long time to do it, but it did break.”

“So, work on changing. You got her to start with, then got her back once, not sure you should try for a third time.”

“I hear ya.” Jon accompanied his words with a determined nod of his head.

Changing the gist of their discussion, Jon asked, “You know we’re flying out this Thursday for the UK, right?”

“Yeah, her passport gonna be ready?”

“I’m pulling every string I can. It should be here by Wednesday at the latest.”

“Hey, meant to ask, what’s on your wrist?” Richie was looking at the bracelet Amanda had gotten him for Christmas. Jon took it off and handed to him. He looked at it and then at Jon.

“She give you this?”

“Yeah…amazing, huh?”

“She learned you fast, didn’t she?”

“Scared the shit outta me, Rich, I gotta tell ya.”

“You don’t like feeling outta control, bro’, so I’m not surprised. But you did surprise me by letting her get away.”

Nodding at his friend, Jon replied, “I know, major fuck up, will NOT be repeated.”

Sipping his wine, Richie just responded with “Good”.

“You staying over tonight?”

“Nah, thought I would head to mom’s, let the two of you have some privacy on your first night back. Besides, your walls are thinner than you know!” Richie’s grin was extremely wicked and Jon smiled that male smile that says a man knows when he’s pleased his woman.

Amanda jointed them then with her own wine glass and the three sat and talked a bit more. After a bit, Richie told them he was going to head to his mom’s and that he would talk to them tomorrow. Kissing his cheek, Amanda thanked him again for dinner and Jon slapped his shoulder.

“If ya ever need a job…” he teased his friend.

“Nah, my day job is pretty good.” Richie teased back.


Carrying their luggage upstairs, Amanda yawned hugely. It was close to ten and although it was a bit early for them, both decided to call it a night. I love having his arms around me, Amanda thought as Jon spooned her. He hugged her closer to him, pulling her tightly against him from chest to toes. Their breathing evened out and they both fell into a deep sleep.

Waking early the next morning as he had gone to sleep much sooner that he usually did, Jon closeted himself in his office to catch up on his business ventures. He verified the UK concert dates as they were hitting some venues that were done on the Lost Highway tour but demand was enough that they would add shows, with a portion of the sales going to charity. It would be a much shorter tour schedule, with only three concerts scheduled. He checked in at the Soul offices, talking with Marcia, finding out if he would be needed there anytime soon. She filled him in on some small problems with marketing, and he advised her of his recommendations. His commitments to Habitat were not as involving and there was nothing upcoming for at least two months.

He was still on the phone when he heard a soft tap on his door. It opened and Amanda stuck her head in. He motioned for her to come in and she brought him a coffee. Giving her a smile he wrote on a pad ‘ 30 mins’, letting her know when he expected to be done. Another call to his main assistant, Sharon, confirmed that Amanda’s passport was expected to arrive on Wednesday. He went over his schedule with her and she uploaded her PDA info to his computer where he synced his. They were now on the same page, so to speak, and could she could send info as needed.

His final call was to the other three guys regarding their flights into JFK Airport where they would then go from there to England. Each one asked if Amanda was coming and all were glad she was. Tico in particular did not mince words with the younger man.

“You got your shit together now?”

“Yeah, Teek, I think I do and whatever I don’t, I’m working on.”

“Good. See you in a few days.” They both hung up.

His cell rang again and he saw it was Dot.


“Hi Jon, just a quick update here. I talked to your mom, mainly letting her know that I wasn’t going to support her with anything to do that was against Amanda.”

“Jesus, Dot! Thank you!”

“You’re welcome, Jonny. Talk to you soon.”

He hung up, amazed at the real changes in his ex-wife. He found himself looking at the ceiling and laughed softly remembering Richie and the four horseman. He might had been right about that after all.


  1. Cathy Says:

    Yet another great chapter, I love Tico's get straight to the point and how the guys will always be looking out for Amanda's best interests.

  2. Mishna Says:

    I love the way you have Dorothea so supportive. It is really nice to read. I also love the rapport not only between Amanda and Jon but Amanda and Richie. There is a real friendship there with her and the guys. I love your writing. Can't wait for more.

  3. Opester Says:

    Glad Jon has got both Richie and Tico keeping him on the right path! Behavior change is pretty hard and he needs all the reminders he can get!
    I love this story too!

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