Chapter 240

Friday, June 10, 2011 at 9:42 PM
For Jon, the next few days seemed to defy the concepts of time and space. He was extraordinarily busy with all his business ventures and yet, each day seemed to have a thousand hours in it. He was constantly surrounded by people, but he felt detached and alone in a way he hadn’t for a while. Over-riding it all were his emotions that roller-coasted from a high every time he tried to reach Amanda on the phone, to a low with every unanswered call.

Four days after he had seen her at the hotel, his emotions and his exhaustion were reaching rock bottom. Richie hadn’t spoken another word to him about Amanda, but an uncommon tension between them had Jon on a defensive edge. An edge small enough that he was starting to fall over into an abyss of anger that had him turning his rage outward.

By the end of that week even those closest to him were walking on egg shells. He’d made his assistant cry twice, Dorothea had hung up on him, Dave and Tico were speaking in one syllable words and Richie had raised his eyebrows so many times they were starting to take root at his hairline. It wasn’t that often that “Jon” and “douche” were used in the same sentence, however, as the week crawled by murmurs of that - and worse - could be heard by those left in a room after Jon had scorched the paint from the ceiling.

For Carol Bongiovi the last few weeks had passed with their own distortion. For her, though, the two weeks since she’d seen Richie, since he’d told her the truth of what she had discovered, had flown by with a speed that seemed to pressing her closer and closer to the confrontation she had hoped to never have.

She was going to have to talk to Jon.

Every day since Amanda had been forced to leave, forced by her interference and distrust, by her manipulation of people and events, Jon had grown progressively more distant and more depressed. Where he had been kind, he was now cruel. Where he had been open and friendly, he was now closed and distant. He barely spoke to the guys, refused to discuss anything with Dorothea, and his tone with her was at the lowest level of civil when she called him.

Carol was sitting in the study of her home, the room where she came to do her correspondence, make phone calls, and to think. She was staring out the window at the late afternoon sun when she heard her husband knock at the open door. She turned to him.

“Carol, what’s wrong? I’ve known you too long not to know when something’s bothering you.”

She gave a small smile at her husband, a mere ghost of a smile, and nodded.

It was time.

~~~

John sat there after his wife had finished telling him what she had done. She explained her reasons, which in hindsight sounded petty and selfish, and what she had learned, both from the investigator and from Richie. She voiced her concerns over the changes in Jon and how she wanted to tell him what she had done, but she feared losing even more of his love than she already had.

Her husband looked at her. She was scared of what he would say, how he would be right to call her out for the being the petty tyrant she had tried to be. She had made so many mistakes and now she simply didn’t know how to fix them.

“You know what you have to do, don’t you?” John asked her softly.

“I’m afraid, John.” She whispered back.

“Do you want our son back, Carol?”

“More than anything…” she began, but John interrupted her.

“Enough to admit you were wrong, wrong from the beginning, and that you were the cause of what happened between the two of them?” He loved his wife, but the time for cosseting her was over.

“I was wrong. I hurt that girl, John. When she was so sick she could barely stand, I told her that her husband was alive, thinking she knew, that she was a fraud. She passed out cold when she heard that and that’s when I knew. I knew she wasn’t lying, that she didn’t know her husband was alive. And then, as sick as she was, I made her leave.”

Carol admitted all this, getting it out now, while she was brave enough to tell her husband everything.

John started to speak, but she hurried before he could say anything.

“I told her to leave and then I manipulated things in such a way that Jon would never look for her. I made it look like she deliberately hurt him so he would get over her and get on with his life.”

Tears filled her eyes as she looked at her husband.

“How could I have been so cruel? How could I have done that?” Tears started in earnest now as she felt the deep shame of what she had wrought.

Looking at his wife, John found himself shocked at what he was hearing. Carol could be cold when she chose to, when she felt someone or something was threatening her family, but she had never treated anyone before like she had treated Amanda.

“Carol, you were against her from the first. You never even gave her a chance. Why?”

“I’ve been thinking about that since Richie came here to the house. This is going to make me sound even worse, John, but the truth is I liked how much Jon involved me in his life after his divorce. I felt needed again in a way I hadn’t in years. And then he brought Amanda in and again the truth is I felt he could do better. He had a chance to find someone who would enhance his life in a way Dorothea never could and again he chose someone like her. I wanted better for my son.”

Shaking his head side to side, John looked at her and his eyes had hardened.

“What was better for him that someone who really loved him? Who wanted to be in his life just the way it is?”

Carol opened her mouth to answer, but then the words John had spoken sank in as his eyes held hers.

“Nothing. Nothing was better than that.” Her voice was flat in final acceptance of how wrong she had been.

John stood up and extended his hand to her. She looked up in surprise.

“What? Where are we going?” Her voice shook a little, as deep inside she already knew.

“To see our son.”

~~~

Jon and Richie were in the studio, although to say they were working would have been a little like saying a dog has fleas. Jon was almost frenetic in his obsessive need to keep himself busy, his thoughts occupied, and his mind on anything but how unhappy he was. Richie was quiet, not at all his usual self, his mind returning every so often to the text message he had received in response to the repeated calls and voice messages he had left on Amanda’s phone. It had taken her almost two days to respond, but at least he knew she was okay, even if he had no idea where she was.

I’m fine. Away for a while. Don’t worry. Thanks for your help.

Some message, Richie thoughts were a growl, doesn’t tell me a damn thing. He was interrupted when he heard the distinctive sound of a cork being pulled from a bottle. Looking up he saw Jon opening another bottle of wine.

“You trying to become an alcoholic?”

Standing still for a moment, Jon just lifted his head and raised a mocking eyebrow.

The insinuation in that movement made the hackles rise on the back of Richie’s neck. He set his guitar down, stood up and looked at his friend. With lightly squinted eyes and a voice roughened by repressed anger, he answered that look.

“Yeah asshole, I know what you’re thinking. It took the worst decision I ever made, driving after drinking with my kid in the car. Took that for me to learn. What’s it gonna take you?”

The two men stared at each other, neither wanting to take another step along a path leading to words that could not be taken back.

“What if there was a reason why she left? Richie’s voice was soft as Jon raised his full wine glass.

“It wouldn’t matter. She led me along real well and I fell for it. Whatever the reason, it’s not good enough.” Jon’s voice was a low growl filled with anger and hurt and frustration. Amanda hadn’t answered a single phone call. He had no idea where she was and he couldn’t admit to Richie - hell, he could barely admit to himself - that he wanted to talk to her. That he wanted to see her.

Richie turned to leave the studio at hearing that. He paused with his hand on the doorknob at Jon’s voice.

“Where ya going?”

He turned back and answered.

“Outside for a break.”

Jon nodded and started to turn away.

“Oh, and Jon?” Richie called out as he opened the door.

Jon turned back and looked at Richie in question.

“I want you to remember what you just said. About no reason being good enough.” With that he left the studio, closing the door softly behind him.

Jon stood for several moments staring at the closed door.

Wondering ...

What the hell has happened to my life?

10 comments

  1. Anonymous Says:

    I was on the last 5 chapters when I noticed the counter for 2011 change from 2 to 3. I nearly jumped out of my skin! THIS STORY IS CRAZY GOOD! So glad you're continuing it!

  2. Anonymous Says:

    Oh thank you for coming back to this story! I've been checking daily and it made my day to see your last post! I hope we get more real soon!! Great chapter!

  3. Bayaderra Says:

    O!M!G!
    a new chapter!?!?!?!?!

    *faints*

  4. Sandy Says:

    OMG!!!! So glad you are back!!! You have been missed! Hope things are going well for you. Love the new chapter!!!!

  5. VictoriaJovi Says:

    Yeah a new chapter. This is such a good story, glad you're back.

  6. rutpop Says:

    Yeehaa new chapter hope we get to hear Carol admit the truth soon.

  7. Anonymous Says:

    Thank you so much for coming back. My life is soooo hectic and reading stories like this sort of takes me away to my Bon Jovi land. This story is so good! Can't wait for more.

  8. Alice Faye Says:

    OMG if I hadn't gone on twitter I wouldn't have known.

    WOW Can't wait for the fireworks.

  9. Anonymous Says:

    Thanks .... glad your back !!

  10. Anonymous Says:

    Thank you so much!!! I needed a new chapter more than you will ever know! So glad you are back!

    Newbee

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