Saturday, September 18, 2010

Chapter Forty-Six

Her eyes fluttered open and she pulled the sheet up around her neck. God she couldn't wait to get out of there. The sterile smell of hospital had a way of making you just dread the place more and you couldn't get out of there fast enough. She wasn't a patient person at the best of times, but when it was something out of her control it was just so much worse. The sunshine peeked through the slat blinds and she smiled as her eyes rested on the man that had spent the entire night by her side, fast asleep. 

They very much needed to talk amongst the craziness of what happened as they didn't get a chance with David and the police last night. They never caught the thugs and there was no evidence to suggest that they had achieved what they wanted. Hell, they didn't even know what they wanted or what they wanted to achieve by having Jon going there. As the story had unfolded, Jon had admitted to reading an email that was captured by the their incoming security filters on David's computer. She couldn't help but feel guilty, if she had never left it would have never happened. She was always vigilant at locking her laptop when she moved away from it. It was a complete honest mistake by her colleague but in hindsight it could have been a deadly one.
He stirred and she smiled as his eyes met hers. "You OK?" He asked grunting as he arched back in his chair.

"I'm OK, I just want to get out of here."

He chuckled at sat forward rubbing his face with his hands. "That sounds more like you. We'll get you home today Kenz."

Her eyebrow raised as he perched himself on the edge of the bed, her eyes closed as he gently pushed the hair back from her face. He leaned in and she sighed as his lips passed his morning heat through to her. She lifted her hand and palmed his cheek as they kissed again, taking it deeper, urgent. She sighed and closed her eyes enjoying the intimacy that she had been craving from him for weeks. It had always been there, they both just had avoided it. 

"All I could think about when I saw you lying in that heap was that I might not be able to ever do this." His eyes flicked down to her lips and then back to her gaze. "And mean it."

Her heart skipped in her chest and she scraped her thumb along his cheekbone. "Me too." She leaned her forehead on his. "There is so much I want to say and should have said before." She went to continue but he rested his fingers against her lips.

"Me first." He let out a deep breath and his hands dropped down to soothe her arms. "MacKenzie I tried to deny it for so long but the fact is," his gaze met hers. "I'm in love with you." 

His eyes set into the warmest blue and it filled her heart. God she hadn't felt this way in such a long time...well since Brian. She nodded as he kept the intimacy with them barely inches apart.

"I was stupid."

She chuckled and then bit her lip as his expression didn't change from serious. 

"I should have never let it get as far as it did, we were so disjointed and I feel partially to blame for what happened to you."

"Oh Jon, no."

He shook his head and squeezed her hand. She relaxed and waited. "I didn't want to admit there was this thing between us, hell I didn't even know what it was for so long MacKenzie. It wasn't like my marriage.. you're not like my wife at all."

She raised her brow. "Is that a good thing?"

He laughed. "It's a great thing. I can't promise what we'll have is perfect but I can promise you I'll try."

MacKenzie blinked away the urge of tears. "Dammit, you're making me cry Jon. Not fair." She wiped her cheek but smiled when he closed the gap and their lips touched. There was so much to sort out, the gang what was happening next, what did this even all mean but for once MacKenzie let the moment sink in. He was giving her what she wanted. She covered their hands with her other hand and kissed him again. "I will try too. Speaking of marriage, the nurse informs me that we're engaged."

He laughed. "Oh that. I had to lie to get in here. I was going crazy when I didn't know what had happened to you."

"So there is no diamond ring in that pocket?"

"Nope, are you disappointed?"

"No, that would have been cheesy. And we're hardly together let alone in a place to be married?" She hoped she was assuming he felt the same way. Hell, she loved Jon but marriage was a whole different game and she wasn't even sure how she felt about that. 

"No, marriage isn't really my forte at the moment. Maybe one day we'll get there." His fingers dusted down her temple and his thumb traced around the ugly bandage. "They tell me I can take you home today, but you're going to have to stay in bed a couple of days just to rest."

Oh joy. On one level she was looking forward to having Jon fuss over her but on the other side she knew didn't keep still for too long at all. Ugh. "Great. I can at least help David do some research, makes some calls..." She stopped mid sentence as his frown deepened. "What?"

"It's called rest MacKenzie. David is taking care of all that needs to happen and I've given him the reassurance I will co-operate with his decisions and actions around the security. It's all sorted... you just have to get better." 

She sighed and then smirked. "You're really going to listen to everything he recommends you to do?" 

"I am capable in following instructions, occasionally. Kenzie I just want you to worry about getting back to your old self and being my girlfriend."

She leaned back and smiled. " Girlfriend huh? You asking me out?" She wasn't surprised how comfortable she felt with that. It had always been there between them and now that the wall of confusion was removed, it was all too perfectly clear. 

Jon chuckled and flicked her hand playfully. "Don't make me hurt you."

MacKenzie snickered. "Like you'd be able to do that. I'd overpower you in a second."

Jon folded his arms and toyed with a smile. "That sounds like a challenge for the bedroom when you're up to it."

"You are so on." She lay back into the pillows and sighed. There was still an air of uncertainty about the situation. Would they target them again? And how far would they would actually go? If anything this incident proved what MacKenzie had dreaded all along. They were relentless and there was no limits. She wished she knew what they had ultimately planned to achieve with Jon coming to the warehouse? What would they have done? Roughed him up? Kidnapped him? Hell, killed him? The coils in her belly relaxed after she tried to erase the thought. But it was true, anything was possible right now. 

She just had to make sure they were safe back at his apartment and then go from there. 


"I'm bored."

Jon rested down the pot of coffee on his bedside table and sat on the edge of the bed. She was propped up against the pillow, sprawled in the middle of his bed with his sheets twisted around her. He had insisted that she stayed in here with him. Where he could wake up in the middle of the night and know that she was safe. The late sun was streaming through the wall of windows but nothing was going to lift her mood. "Here, this is the remote to the TV up there. It has all the channels."

She snatched it off him and sighed. "Great. Can you get my laptop for me?"

Jon poured her a cup and handed it to her. "Nope. Not at least for a day or so Kenz. David has it all under control, he's up in my office at the moment. He'll leave a guard here tonight, I'm not planning on going anywhere so we'll be safe." Jon did what he did so often, he let the outside shine with confidence while he kept his own nerves locked away. She was OK and apart from an incredible sense of guilt and uncertainty, so was was he. 

"Can I at least play with your phone? You have better games than me. Blackberry games suck."

Jon rolled his eyes and pulled his phone out of his pocket. "Alright. Password for the iTunes store is Romeo."

MacKenzie grinned as she took it off him. "Aww, that's sweet. Have you told them about all this?" 

Jon shook his head. "No, and they don't need to know that their father was an idiot and nearly had his bodyguard killed."

"Jon that's not what I meant..." But he didn't stay, he left her to play. He needed a cigarette. He snuck out on the balcony and flicked his lighter to life. He closed his eyes and sucked in a lung full of smoke. The flash of her lying limp in his arms streaked in blood, his clothes stained with her blood was going to stay with him a long time. He shook it off and the leaned in, the railing pressing into his belly. Thank god it had been just a grazed bullet. He had shut the nausea down when he kept imagining it could have been much much worse.

And even worse, all his fault.
"Nice view..." He didn't turn around when David stepped onto the balcony. "Mind if I have one of those?"

Jon held out the pack. "Go for it." 

"Everything OK?"

Jon nodded and flicked his ash over the side. "Yeah. I'm just glad we're home. Although are we really safe here?"

David joined him at the railing and kept his eyes on the skyline. "Your both safe here. I have security on the door. You need a key-code and card to get it, these gangs after often ruthless but not always that smart, so don't worry too much." 

Jon nodded. "But what about after she's better? I can't stay in this apartment forever. It's not my lifestyle but I don't want to put other people at risk around me."

"We'll figure that out day by day Jon. Don't worry."

He pinched the bridge of his nose and squeezed his eyes shut. "Look David, I hate admitting I was wrong but in this instance I was. I'm sorry I've been an asshole to deal with. I just didn't---" He just didn't know what else he could have done to make this right. But the truth was he couldn't in this instance and to admit that to himself was a bitter pill to swallow. 

"It's OK Jon. This is not an easy thing to deal with, especially one that hasn't had a background in the criminal underworld like yourself. I'm sure it's been frustrating as hell." 

"You're not wrong. Mackenzie's put up with me being a right prick as well. If only things hadn't been so messy, just maybe this wouldn't have happened this way."

"We all make mistakes Jon. I guess one thing this whole thing did achieve was you both sorted out whatever was between you? Yes?" 

"Yeah. We did." He threw David a glance. "You're not going to give me a if you hurt her I'll kick your ass speech are you?" He knew MacKenzie had close family but he also knew David was to her what Richie was to him. Her rock. 

David snorted. "God no, she's more than capable of kicking some guy's ass if they mess her around."

"God, good point. Thanks for the warning." He smiled, she certainly was the most kick ass woman he'd been out with. She even rivalled his ex-wife that knew black-belt Karate so never wanted to end up on the wrong side of MacKenzie.

"All I'm saying is that don't beat yourself up about this Jon. You both made some mistakes. MacKenzie wouldn't hold it against you so don't hold it against yourself."

And there was the problem. He held himself accountable for so many things, it was just who he was. "I'll try."

David smashed his butt into the tray and patted Jon on the back. "Good, I'll get back to work. And to be honest, I'd rather be doing my work than the work you'll be doing to get that one to rest."

"No kidding." Left alone again he took in a few breaths of city air to cool his nerves and headed back inside. Could he forgive himself even though she was OK? 

Only time would tell.

Authors Note: a huge thank you to you guys, for your patience but mostly your compassion. Thank you so much for all your warm thoughts in a time that's been incredibly difficult. Love you guys & the good news is I am all up and running and back on track, life is returning to a new kind of normal after all this earthquake crap. :)


Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Some of you are probably wondering where I am.

We've had a pretty large earthquake this week so I'm trying to get my life back to a semi-kind of normal.

Check here for what happened and I promise I'll be back soon!