John Francis - Chapter 251

Sunday, December 18, 2011 at 6:34 PM
Jon kept running into a brick wall.

No, a castle made of brick.

No, no, a castle of brick inside a fortress of steel inside a mountain of rock.

Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.

He had called Amanda’s mother three times when the last call went straight to voice mail, a sure sign she had turned her phone off. He’d stammered through a message that he was sure was a soliloquy in incoherence.

Jon stared at his watch. 10:30. He hit a speed dial button and started barking orders at his assistant, Sharon, before she’d even finished saying, “Good morning, J…”

Their conversation consisted of several “uh-huh’s”, “okay’s” and finally an “I’ll call you back.”

Jon hung up, a satisfied smile on his face. He would know where Amanda was by the end of the day.

Nothing was going to stop him.

Not even a brick wall.

~~~

Richie sat on the couch in Trish’s apartment, lost in thought. He had most of his attention tuned into the bathroom where Trish had gone, ready to spring into action if she was sick again. He was so engrossed in listening for sounds that she needed him that the ringing of her phone barely registered. The second ring had him looking around for it. By the fourth ring he knew he wasn’t going to get there in time, but he managed to fish it out from under her purse just as “Missed Call” showed on the display. More out of habit than curiosity, he hit the button that showed the last caller.

No name, just a number.

+30 22860 86267 (DO NOT CALL THIS - I MADE IT UP! LOL!)

Richie’s head tilted in the near universal sign for confusion as he looked at a number that was decidedly not from the US. He traveled enough to know that +30 was a country code. He took out his own phone and a quick search had the answer. +30 was for Greece.

Who the hell did Trish know in Greece?

Richie looked up as Trish came back into the living room.

“Hey babe, your phone rang, but I didn’t get there in time.”

She smiled at him and reached for her phone.

“Who do you know in Greece?” Richie asked.

Trish’s eyes widened slightly as she looked at the last call on her phone.

She knew someone in Greece alright.

“My … cousin.”

Richie smiled then himself. “Gorgeous country. You ever been there?”

“No,” Trish answered, shaking her head, “haven’t had the chance yet.”

“We should go. You close to your cousin?” He paused, then smiled even more widely. “Didn’t even ask if your cousin was a he or a she…?”

Feeling the tension that had risen with Richie’s first question begin to drain off, Trish gave a small laugh as she thought for a few precious seconds. “A female cousin…” She trailed off, not wanting to make her lie any bigger. Richie saved her from adding any more as he returned to the subject they’d been talking about before she’d left the room a few minutes earlier. Trish mentioning her cousin in Greece had him thinking of honeymoons which in turn had him right back where they’d left off.

“Trish, you -- you weren’t saying you don’t want to marry me, were you?” he asked.

“No, I wasn’t saying that. I -- we -- it’s just I want us to get to know each other better. This pregnancy -- we wouldn’t be talking marriage yet if I hadn’t gotten pregnant.” Trish fixed him with a firm look. “And you know that.”

Richie’s lips tightened a bit, even as he knew she was right. He knew he was falling for her. Hell, he might even have already fallen. It sure felt that way. But he also knew he could be a bit impetuous and a slight grimace crossed his face as Denise flashed into his memory.

“No, we wouldn’t be talking about it yet, that’s true,” he said. “But things have changed --” He gestured expansively, managing to include her belly and the entire world in the gesture. “We’re going to be parents together and I think we should be married when when we do.”

A dog with a bone, Trish thought to herself. She widened her eyes at him in a playful manner, a small smile on her face. “We’re going to be parents whether we’re married or not.” She reached out, putting her small hand into his large callused one.

“Richie, if this is right between us, a little time isn’t going to hurt, and if we’re wrong, we won’t be adding a divorce to it.”

He didn’t want to admit it, but she was making a lot of sense.

Why then was he so disappointed?

~~~

“Amanda! Thank god you didn’t call me from your cell phone!” Trish nearly shouted into the phone a few minutes after Richie had kissed her good-bye. She’d told him she really wanted to sleep that afternoon and he had reluctantly admitted he was now wide awake, so they’d agreed to meet later for dinner.

“Why? What’s the matter? Are you ok? Trish, dammit, I’ve been frantic over here!” Amanda’s voice was also loud in her excitement.

“I’m ok, but I have something to tell you,” Trish answered. “I got back from the doctor’s a little while ago and -- Amanda, I’m having triplets!”

“Oh--my--god…” Amanda’s voice rose on every word. “TRIPLETS?!”

Trish answered in a breathy near whisper, “Yes. Triplets.” She yanked the phone from her ear when Amanda let out a loud shout.

“I’m so happy for you!” Amanda continued. “Did the doctor say everything was okay with the babies?”

“Yeah, he did. It’s really early, almost too soon to really know, but apparently just enough!” Trish laughed as Amanda squealed again.

“What did Richie say?” Amanda asked.

“He fainted.” Trish said, a chuckle beginning low in her throat.

“HE WHAT?” Amanda shouted and Trish nearly dropped the phone as she doubled up with laughter.

“Fell flat on the floor. All six feet of him.”

“Oh, poor Richie …” Amanda crooned, then laughed. “That I would have liked to see.”

Trish hiccoughed as her laughter slowly wound down. “Oh no, you wouldn’t! He scared the hell out of me!”

They laughed as friends do for another minute until Amanda remembered what Trish had first said when she’d called back.

“Why did you say it was good I hadn’t used my cell to call you?”

Trish took a deep breath, letting it out with a small shudder. “Because Richie picked up the phone.”

“Oh god,” Amanda whispered, “that would have been bad.”

There was silence from both women over the miles separating them as they thought of the secret they shared. It hadn’t started out that way. It had begun the night Richie had brought Trish over to Jon’s house and they’d all had dinner at Buddakan, They’d exchanged phone numbers later that evening as they’d talked in the ladies’ room and a few phone calls later they were talking almost every day.

Amanda had mentioned to Jon that she and Trish were talking and Trish had said she’d done the same with Richie. What neither had seemed to have done was tell their men just how close they’d become.

Trish didn’t know anyone dating someone like Richie … except Amanda … and the same was true for Amanda. While Susan was still her dearest friend, the relationship she had with Jon seemed to be off limits in their discussions and she wasn’t sure when it had become that way. What she had come to value, though, was how she and Trish could talk as equals, each knowing quite a bit about how the other’s life was simply by virtue of dating the same category of men.

Over the last few months they had become closer than either of them had expected and during the last few weeks Amanda had come to rely on the support Trish provided, as had Trish with her situation. While neither shared intimate details of their lovers, each was able to find answers from the other when needed.

“Has he asked you if you‘ve talked to me?” Amanda asked.

“You mean Richie, right? I haven’t seen Jon since … well, since before all this happened,” Trish answered.

Amanda sighed deeply. Even hearing Jon’s name hurt. “Yeah, I mean Richie,” she answered.

“No,” Trish said, “and I’m surprised he hasn’t.”

Amanda smiled, although she knew Trish couldn’t see her. “I’m not. Not really. Those two are so close. There’s just this -- bond -- there that is more than just friends. Jon’s closer to Richie than to his own brothers. You can just feel it.”

“I haven’t spent as much time with the two of them as you, but I believe it,” Trish answered, then paused, taking in a deep breath. “Amanda, Richie -- he asked me to marry him.”

“Oh, Trish!” Amanda gasped, and then laughed. “So when’s the date?” Silence met her question and Amanda’s voice softened as she spoke. “Trish?”

“I’m here,” Trish said. “Not yet, Amanda, I didn’t say no, but I know we wouldn’t be talking about marriage if it weren’t for this pregnancy. It’s too much right now. We need more time to see if we work.”

“Aww, honey,” Amanda sighed. “I understand. You have some time.”

“I know we do and if it’s right between us -- and I think it might be -- then we’ll take that step,” Trish said.

Amanda nodded as she spoke. “You’ll know, Trish. You really will.”

“I think so too,” Trish said, then she took a deep breath herself. “Amanda? I need to tell you something.”

“Ok, I’m listening…” Amanda said.

“Jon wants you back.”

John Francis - Chapter 250

Sunday, December 4, 2011 at 4:36 PM
Too wired to sleep after Richie left, Jon started making coffee…and lists. He liked lists. They clarified his thinking, sorted out his plans, and gave him a direction to take. He’d usually have two or three filled with his barely legible scrawl before he’d even stop to take a real breath. Which is why he found himself frowning, scowling really, at the blank sheets of paper in front of him.

At first he’d thought of hiring a private detective, but considering that his mother’s hiring of one had started this whole avalanche of fuck-uppery, he was hesitant to go that route. He didn’t have any friends in NCIS to triangulate Amanda’s cell phone signal and even if he did, he’d be hard pressed to convince them this was the emergency he thought it was.

Jon sighed and lit another cigarette.

Fuck.

Shit. Fuck.

Shit. Fuck. Motherfuck.

Even swearing wasn’t helping.

He looked at his watch. Almost nine. He dialed the number he’d stored in his cellphone from months earlier and waited while it rang.

“Hello? Mrs. Adams? It’s Jon Bongio --”

He didn’t even get his entire name out before he was speaking to a dead phone.

Apparently calling Amanda’s mother was working out just as well as he thought it would.

Which was not at all.

~~~

Amanda was up the rest of the night and saw the dawn with eyes blurred from lack of sleep. She had found herself unable to go back to bed, afraid she would dream again. It was bad enough that she kept replaying it over and over as she sat outside, a blanket keeping her warm, a single carafe of wine slowly being emptied.

Dreaming it again and waking to find it was real life would be too much. She would have to sleep, of course, but not tonight. Not if she could help it.

As light gradually brightened her terrace, she stirred from her blanket cocoon and walked into the bathroom. The shower helped her wake up a little more, the water warm and soothing. She dressed for the day, intending to spend it walking as much as she could so that when she tried to sleep that night, she would do so without dreaming.

Please, God, no more dreams.

It didn’t help to know that being awake wasn’t any better.

Amanda had been in Greece for almost a week. It was gorgeous and the people were warm and friendly, yet every day so far had passed in a fog of pain that sleep brought no relief from.

What she wanted was for her love for Jon to die.

Learning what Jeremy had done had killed her feelings for him with one swift slice through her heart. The cords that held her to him had been severed the moment she’d learned that he’d betrayed her in the way that he had. An affair she might have forgiven. Ending their life, her life, as she knew it had not only had ended her love for him, but had changed what she knew thought she knew about herself. About who she was and her place in this world.

Amanda fingered the bracelet on her arm, the tangible reminder of the man known as Jon bon Jovi and that for a brief moment he had been in her life. The problem was that she did not give her heart lightly. She would have been with Jeremy until the end and there would never have been a man named Jon who would have awakened feelings she’d never felt before. She had come to realize over the last few days that while Jeremy was her first love, he was not her true love.

Her true love was a man she would never see again.

~~~

“Richie!” Trish screamed as the big man suddenly hit the floor with a bone-jarring thud. She sent up a silent prayer of thanks for thick carpeting and no nearby sharp edges.

One cold rag later, Richie found himself blinking his eyes and staring up as Trish wiped his forehead as water slowly trickled down and into one of his ears.

“Trish?” he asked, squinting his eyes in confusion.

“Richie! Thank God! Are you alright?” Trish’s hands seemed to suddenly be everywhere as she tried to check that everything was working properly.

Richie sat up, a little slowly as new aches and pains added themselves to the ones he got just a short while ago from his bout with Jon.

“What happened?” Richie asked, looking around, surprised to find himself on the floor.

“I think you fainted,” Trish said.

Richie’s face suddenly reminded Trish of an indignant cat.

“I did not faint. I have never fainted in my life.”

Trish just grinned at him now that she realized he hadn’t been hurt. She watched him stand and only reached out a hand once when he wobbled just a little.

Richie wasn’t sure his legs would hold him up. They seemed to have turned into a curious form of leg-shaped jelly and he willed himself to take several deep breaths.

Trish cleared her throat softly. “Uhm, Richie, do you remember the last thing I said to you?”

He looked at her and it was apparent he was thinking. She knew the moment he remembered when his eyes widened and his mouth formed a soft “O”.

“You’re pregnant,” he gulped and Trish almost smiled as he stated the obvious. “And -- you’re -- triplets?”

Trish nodded with a bemused look suddenly on her face.

Richie started to speak. “Well…” He cleared his throat and tried again. “I think I -- want to sit down.” He matched action to words and sat heavily on the couch.

Trish sat down on the other end of the couch, a bit unsure of herself in light of Richie’s apparent shock at her announcement although she was a little relieved to see she wasn’t the only one who’d had her whole world rocked.

She had always wanted a baby. Maybe even two, three if she had to pick the magic number, but one baby at a time. Just one. Learning she was going to have three at once had been enough to bring her to alternating bouts of laughter and tears throughout the morning. Richie had happened to arrive after one of the crying spells.

Finally realizing he could speak in entire sentences, Richie asked, “What did the doctor say?”

She sighed. The doctor had said quite a lot actually. “Lots of rest. No lifting anything over ten pounds. No vigorous exercise. And he wants me to see a nutritionist.”

Richie nodded along as Trish recited each item. “Good, good, okay, we can do all that.”

They fell into silence then, each with their own thoughts.

Trish finally spoke. “I’m terrified, Richie.”

Richie looked at her, seeing the truth of her words in her eyes.

“You’ll be ok, baby. We’ll make sure of it.”


(*wink* Bayaderra)

John Francis - Chapter 249

Thursday, December 1, 2011 at 9:07 PM
Richie turned the key to his apartment and groaned softly as his sore fingers hit the door jam as he did so. He shook his head, cursing again under his breath at his mistaken notion that having it out with Jon would be a good idea. His tongue ran over the small split in his lower lip where a right hook from Jon had caught him when he had zigged instead of zagged. He chuckled a bit at the idea of two men near 50 years of age trading punches like teenagers just proving their manhood. His grin faded as he “Ow”d at the tenderness of his lip.

He shut the door softly as he entered, throwing his keys onto the table near the door. Raking a hand through his hair, he stood for a moment by the door, feeling every single bump and bruise screaming at him that he wasn’t a kid anymore. He’d called Trish once he’d left Jon’s as the sun was just barely a warm rising glow. She’d sounded sleepy and he knew he’d woken her. He’d told her he was fine and that he would talk to her later that morning. All he wanted to do now was stand for a few hours in a warm shower until the aches and pains of the night were turned to a dull roar.

He settled for just under thirty minutes and stepped out of the steamy shower feeling as if he was only 90, instead of 95. Wrapping a towel around his waist, he shook back his hair then ran a brush through it. He cleared a section of the mirror with a swipe of his hand and took stock. The swelling in his lip was going down, although he might end up with a minor black eye before all was said and done. He left the bathroom, throwing on a pair of loose shorts. The kitchen, or more importantly, coffee, beckoned.

Richie wanted to speak with his lawyer first thing, which unfortunately meant waiting until at least 8:30, to get the paperwork in order. With serious money came considerations beyond just love and there were things he had to protect no matter who entered his life. He could afford to be generous, but he could not afford to be naïve.

Another thought popped into his mind and he gave a quick glance at the wall clock. Damn! Too early to call Ava in California. He’d also have to talk to Heather about he and Trish getting married. A small involuntary sigh escaped him. He’d thought he wouldn’t ever recover after Heather initiated their divorce. He had really expected to be married to her forever and to find that she had fallen out of love with him, no matter what excuse she gave to the press about another woman, had been devastating. The cruelest words on the planet had to be “I don’t love you anymore”.

Richie shook his head to clear away the small pain that seemed to linger like old cobwebs in an abandoned home. He knew his feelings for Trish were new, but he felt a peace when he was with her that he had not experienced for a very long time. A smile lit his face as thinking about Trish had him also thinking about the coming baby. He was going to be a father again and this time he would have a wife who wanted to travel with him and one who wanted to experience everything his life could give them.

By the time Richie had finished his coffee, it was close enough to 8:30 that he could call his attorney. Jack Marshall answered his private line with a deep-throated hello.

“Hey, Richie! How are you doing?”

Richie smiled as he answered, “Good, Jack, working but not right at the moment.”

“Good, take some time for yourself when you can.” Jack replied.

“I do, my man, I do, and that’s pretty much the reason I’m calling you so early,” Richie said.

“What can I do for you?” Jack asked.

Richie gave a small chuckle. “Jack, I’m getting married.”

Jack paused mid-sip of his own coffee. “Wow! Congratulations! Who’s the lucky lady?”

“Patricia Russo, she’s a psychologist and -- well -- we’re having a baby…” Richie blurted out, then winced. I sound like a kid telling my dad!

“Holy shit, Rich!” Jack said, a slight hint of caution entering his voice.

“Yeah, I know, Jack, but it’s a good thing and I’m really happy,” Richie said.

Jack nodded, knowing as he did so that Richie couldn’t see him, then spoke. “Fair enough. So -- I guess you’re calling me about the legal aspect of this marriage?”

“I need you to draw up a prenuptual agreement.”

“Can you come in this morning? About 10:30?” Jack asked.

“Sure, I’ll see you then.” Richie answered.

“Okay -- and Richie? All my best, man.”

~~~

Richie was finished at the lawyer’s a little before noon and as he was leaving took out his cell phone to call Trish, getting her voice mail.

“Babe! I’m on my way over. See you in about 15 minutes.” He hung up and hoped she wasn’t feeling bad today as he had another time set with Jack Marshall that day for Trish to sign the prenup. He wasn’t too worried about her signing the papers, but he was a bit worried about rushing her through it. But, dammit, he wanted to be on a flight later today to Vegas so they could get married, so it had to be a little fast.

He drove the roads effortlessly, although not just a little recklessly as he was distracted with a thousand and one thoughts about his future. Pulling up in front of Trish’s apartment, he nearly bound out of the car, so eager was he to see her. He kept his wide smile until she opened the door.

“Trish? My god, what’s wrong?” Richie’s voice shook as he took in the face of the woman before him. His first thought was a terrible one - she had lost the baby. His second thought, that someone had died, wasn’t much better, yet all he could think was disaster as her eyes were red from crying and she hadn’t yet spoken a word.

“Are you okay?” Richie demanded.

Trish shook her head. No, Richie, I’m not okay.

“Trish, what is it?” Richie’s voice rose as his sense of panic grew.

“I had to see the doctor this morning.” Trish started to explained. Richie nodded vigorously, urging her on.

“I woke up and when I went to the bathroom, there was some blood.”

Richie closed his eyes as fear trilled through him. He waited to hear the worst.

“The doctor said the pregnancy is fine and that the spotting was normal for some women.” Trish’s voice drew to a whisper as she watched Richie’s eyes snap open in surprise and relief.

He stuttered as he spoke. “Ssss…so you’re okay? The baby is okay?”

Trish nodded and then swallowed hard, trying to find the words to finish what she needed to tell Richie.

“Why were you crying? Is something else wrong?” Richie asked.

Trish shut her own eyes now, but quickly opened them as his grip on her arms suddenly tightened.

“Trish, you’re killing me here. What’s wrong?” Richie demanded, fear once again rising. “Is something wrong with the baby?”

Time seemed to stop as he waited for Trish to answer his question. If she was okay and the baby was okay, then…

“What did you just say?” he asked, stunned out of his thoughts by the strange word she had just whispered.

Trish raised her eyes to his, staring at him as she repeated the news that had sent her home from the doctor’s in a near panic, the word from the doctor that had changed her whole world.

“Triplets.”

Warning and Disclaimer

The content of this blog is pure fiction. Actual places and real people are named, but in no way should anything be taken as fact. This is a story, with adult content and mature situations. If you are offended by such, please do not read.

Please do not copy any of this material to any other web site.

No harm of any sort is meant to the real people in the story and there is no disrespect intended towards anyone's family.

This is PURE FICTION and hopefully those that like this type of story will enjoy it. Comments are GREATLY appreciated!

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