tagRomanceA Gray Area Ch. 08

A Gray Area Ch. 08

byDeity©

His coffee was getting cold. Jon stared down at it as if it had wounded him. Through the brownish liquid he could see his reflection, his eyes distant and narrow. The coffee would do him some good seeing as he hadn't slept for a good two nights. Caden was on his mind. Everywhere he looked he would see her. Everything he did reminded him of her. Even the coffee gave some stark reminiscence of her. He was dieing to talk to her again. He liked that attitude she gave. That harsh bite that was in every word she said. As long as he didn't remind himself that she was being hellcat because she hated him he would be all right.

There had been progress last night. A break through in the experiment. She had spoken to him. Without yelling. She had laughed with him even though it had only been for a second. God, her smile was gorgeous. Her teeth were small. If he didn't know her he would think she had made it all the way to nineteen without losing her baby teeth. They were perfect. Tiny, white and straight, which went perfectly with her lips. And she wasn't just a pretty face. She was a goddess with a mind. The girl was clever.

She was perfect. The words threatened to spill over his lips and into his coffee but he kept them inside. His cousin was looking at him as if he were waiting on something. Shane had said something to him and was obviously expecting an answer but Jon was not at the table. He wasn't even in his body. He was floating on some cloud far away.

'God, if this is her talking to me again. I cant imagine what will happen if we get any closer.' The thought excited him. He had an opening now to fix everything that had gone wrong. He could take back every little thing he had done to her when they were younger. He couldn't honestly say that he wanted things to go back to the way they were. He didn't.

He had been an ass back then. He had neglected something beautiful and let it get away from him. Not just Caden but his family. They had all broken apart. Alcohol seemed to have nurturing affect on him in those times. That and sneaking into Caden's room at three in the morning. Those had been the days when he woke up in the morning and wanted to kick himself.

'I really do care about you, Jon. I'm serious. I'm here for you,' she would always say. In a drunken stupor those words meant nothing to him but now when he looked back they sent a shiver down his spine. He wanted to hear those words from her now in stead of her normal conversation starter 'Don't talk to me.'

'She probably says my words to Jason at night,' the idea made his heart sink. She was with Jason. Even if her and Jon became close friends again that would be the relationship would halt. She was with Jason and that deemed her untouchable.

In front of him Shane removed himself from the table, most likely sick of speaking to a brick wall. Jon snapped out of it and caught his cousin as he walked to the sink washing out his coffee cup.

"New York, huh?" Jon began. He had no idea where he pulled the information from but somehow he knew that Shane was preparing to take a trip to New York next month. Shane didn't turn to look at him. "So you were listening?" he asked. "I'm surprised. I was getting sort of worried. I thought you had fallen into a vegetative state." His cousin set the washed cup down on the counter and returned to his spot at the table.

"Yup," admitted finally. "Department is sending me to New York. They said they had some sort of job for me and if I do good—"

"You get your tummy rubbed and a treat?" Jon offered. Shane smiled. "Close but no. I get a job up at NYPD. Big news, huh?"

Jon shrugged. He couldn't deny that he was proud. For the longest things hadn't been looking to good for any one in the family but Shane had been the only person to break through the mold. He had gotten a job with the local police department, was sky rocketed up to Detective in no time and now he had been asked for, by name, to join NYPD. That was big.

"What can I say? I'm proud of you. Now all you got to do is just get married have 5 sets of twins and you'll be in the record books," he made sure not add any sarcasm in his voice. The compliment was genuine. Shane winced. "Five sets? That's pushing it. They don't make condoms for nothing."

"Condoms are for balloon animals. But you're right. You can barely handle one Deity. Just imagine the nightmare it would be if there ten of them running around," Jon let the words linger in his mouth. His cousin looked at him hard. "Oh, c'mon Shane. Like no one could see you drilling holes in her face all night last night. I'm surprise she didn't kick you. She noticed it too." The blond man shrugged. "If you like her so much, then go get her. You see how the Winter-Kristoff family is. They are stubborn. You have to make the first move." Jon couldn't believe he was insisting on his cousin making a move on Deity Winter. That was suicide. The girl was a firecracker. She was far worse than Caden. She was Caden on her period. Times a million. All day. All Month. All Year.

Good luck, Shane, he was dieing to add in.

"This advice is coming from the guy that is going after a girl with a barb wire fence around her. Tell me, how do you do it?"

Jon shrugged. "Once you get passed the barb wire the electricity and dogs don't hurt much." They shared a laugh before Shane sobered up and asked, "Is it really obvious. About Deity?" Jon nodded and shrugged, as if it were no big deal. "She's a pretty girl, Shane. But you know she's got issues. Look at how many times you've arrested her. Drug charges? Seriously, Shane." He gave Shane a pleading look before continuing. "Her dad just died last year. She was dating an asshole that was beating the shit out of her right under our noses and then to top it all off she doesn't trust you. She has done almost every drug imaginable and then some. God knows how many times she has run away and where she goes." Shane put his head in his hands and messed up his already messy brown hair. "Despite all the negatives of the situation... She needs a guy like you. Someone that can balance her. And love her."

"That's about that lamest thing that has ever come out of your mouth, Jon." Shane admitted. "But it helps."

"I know it does," Jon soaked in the gratitude proudly. He leaned back in his chair, yawning. It was dark outside. He had slept the whole day through. Storm clouds were gathering beyond the window. "And what about Caden?" Shane questioned. "From what I hear you're not exactly getting to lucky with her."

Shane's cousin raised an eyebrow. "Oh, you heard that? From who?"

"Don't worry about it. I've got my sources. Tell me what's up with you two?"

Jon sighed, preparing himself to tell the tale of his past mistakes. "I want her back," He stated softly. "I had heard she was coming back and I thought I would be okay. I was good and over her then I see her at Collin's and I kinda lose it. I had trained myself to not feel anything for her and seeing her just kicked everything out the window. And then I hear she is dating some hot shit model and what can I do but wait around for something bad to happen between them before I swoop in to save the day. He doesn't care about her, Shane," Jon had convinced himself of that. He had seen it in the man's eyes when they were all leaving Candice's house. She had raised herself to her toes to give him a quick kiss and he turned her away. In front of everyone he had denied her a simple form of affection and the hurt had played visibly in Caden's gray eyes for everyone to see.

Jon would have kissed her. He would have kissed with tongue and a little more.

"I don't know what it is that she sees in him but she can do better. So much fucking better. Deity even told me that he is an asshole to her and she takes it. He brought another fucking girl to Beatrice's party. Remember that thing she had a few days ago? Yeah, Jason walked in with some blonde girl on his arm. Supposedly, Jason was embarrassed because he was supposed to have Caden with him and when she wasn't people began to talk but I saw him. He didn't even care. Caden came in crying and Jason look like he just got a free fuck from Carman Elektra." Jon knew that right about now he was showing his heart in his eyes but he needed Shane to understand. "I remember you used to talk about her a lot. Back before she moved."

Jon nodded. "Yeah," he smiled at the memories. "I used to sneak into her room at around three every night. I would pretend to be wasted just so I could get the truth out of her. She figured I wouldn't remember anything so she could tell me everything."

"And that worked?"

"Most of the time...that would be the only time she would let me kiss her, too. When I was 'drunk.' She didn't want me to remember that either." Jon dove deep into all those memories. He could still feel her lips on his; His tongue begging for entrance into her mouth and how she would pull away with a shy laugh. He pushed back in his chair and groaned out loud. "I pretty much fucked it up with her after she told me how she really felt and I blew her off. Embarrassed her in front of all my friends. She left on a plane to New York the next day." Shane looked at his cousin, shocked. "The hell did you do to make her leave that bad?"

Jon sighed. He didn't want to talk about. Didn't want to repeat the words to him and he gave his cousin a look that let him know that. "All right," Shane agreed. "You don't have to tell me now but you do have to tell me some day." Jon nodded. He would. One day.

"So what now? Your apologetically in love with her?"

Jon shook his head. "When I found out she had left for New York I called her cell. It was off so I left a message,"

Shane waited. Jon didn't elaborate. "What did the message say?" He asked after a while. "It said to come back. Sorry I hurt you. I'll be better. We wont have to hide our relationship. Stuff along those lines. She never called back."

A silence settled between the two men. It was obvious that Jon was hurt. He had poured his heart into that message and she didn't call him back. But it was Karma. And Karma was a bitch. He couldn't honestly say that he deserved anything that she threw at him.

Shane had been staring at the table when the house phone rang. His head jerked up as if alarmed at the unfamiliar sound. The ring permeated the air again. Shane leaned in his chair to grab the phone off the receiver that was attached to the wall.

"Hello?"

Silence. He glanced at Jon. "Yeah, He's here." Another silence. "Sir, I'm not sure if that's such a great idea. H—. Yes, sir." Shane extended the phone to Jon. "It's you dad."

Shade hadn't needed to say a word. Jon knew who it was. His cousin's voice had changed from a clipped casual tone to a sharp military answer. His father expected respect and anyone that knew him knew how to talk to him. Jon took the phone but didn't say anything

"Jon? I know ya fucking there. Say somethin', dipshit. Ya got a mouth, use it."

"Yes, dad," Jon answered, already exasperated.

"Where the fuck you been, boy? I been callin' ya since last night. You out partyin' again?"

Across the table Shane excused himself from the kitchen. "No, dad. I just went over to see an old friend. Is there a reason why you're calling?" Jon asked. He was trying to be as polite as possible but his dad was jumping on his last nerve and it was wearing thin. "Ya, I talked to ya mom last night. She says you ain't called her in weeks. The hell is wrong with ya? Don't ya know ya grand pappy is sick? Ya got no respect, boy?"

This was too much. "How dare you call my house and bitch me out about respect. Is there a better reason why you called me or was Cindy to busy tonight so you had to find a different way to get off?" With the last word that Jon ground out the nerve his father had been playing with snapped. "Don't you think I know granddad is sick? I talked to him more than you do. Don't call and patronize me when you're the one that needs to be burned at the stake."

From the doorway Shane had made his way back into Jons line of vision and he could clearly see the word 'wow' mouthed from his lips.

There was silence on the other line. Had he hung up? He hoped he hung up. "Ya got no respect, boy. Ya hear me? Ya no child of mine," Jon's fathers began soft and slowly raised on octave with each word. "How dare I?" He echoed. "How dare I? How dare you, Jon. I worked hard for our family. I gave you and ya mom and even ya goddamn cousin and his mom everything they needed. How do ya'll pay me back? All-a-ya treat me like shit. Like I did something to hurt all-a-ya."

Jon was in shock. Had he seriously just said that? All the bad things he had done to them and he denied every single bit of it. 'I'm innocent,' he was telling him in secret Dad code.

"I can't believe you just said that. You abandoned us. You left us all for dead. I had nothing. Mom had nothing just because you couldn't keep your cock in your pants. We had to suffer, Dad. Mom suffered." His voice cracked with tears.

He wasn't a crying type. Had never been until the night when he was forced to stand by his mothers bed. He was forced to hold her hand while she screamed in agony, writhing, thrashing on the bed. In labor. The baby died on the way out of her womb. They couldn't revive it. Stress the doctor had said. The child had had an irregular heartbeat in the beginning. Soon he had so many other irregularities. All from stress. Too much emotion. It was odd that Jon didn't blame her. If he knew that his spouse was going out behind his back and sleeping with younger women he would be stressed too.

"Don't blame me because ya mom doesn't know how to carry a child." Those words burned. Jon almost felt the singe on his ear upon entering them. "Don't call this house ever again, dad. I don't want to hear you say something like that to me."

"Jon, I swear to God. Don't you hang up this phone—"

"Good night, dad. Go check your blood pressure."

"Jon, you little bastard. I sw—" Jon pressed the talk button on the phone. He turned his head to look at his cousin who had his hands buried in a patch of brown hair. "I should have hung up the phone as soon I heard his voice, Jon." Shane apologized. He was right though. He should have. But he didn't. "Its alright, man. He just needs to get off his high horse and see what its like on the ground. Down here on earth people get blamed for stuff. He isn't used to that yet." He was proud of himself when a smile broke on his cousin's face.

The phone rang again.

Shane reached for it but Jon grabbed it first. "Dad, stop calling. I don't wanna sp—"

"Jon?" A panic voice squealed on the other end of the line. Jon's eyebrows scrunched and Shane sat up straight from the wall he had gone to lean on. "Who is it?" Shane demanded.

"Jon?" The voice asked again.

Was that... "Deity?" Shane snatched the phone from Jon's hands. "Deity?" He practically yelled into the phone. On the other end the young girl began to sob hysterically. Shane pressed a button on the phone so Jon could hear her sobs. "Deity, what's wrong?" The girl continued to cry. "Deity, baby, take a deep breath." Shane counseled. Jon was shocked he had said the word 'baby' to her. He would hear about that later. The sobbing girl took a deep breath. "I tried to call Jon's place but no one answered. I didn't want to call because I knew you wouldn't really want to help—"

"Help with what, Deity? What's going on?"

"Caden's not answering her phone. She needs to be there wh—"

"Be where, Deity? Tell me what the hell is going on." Shane was in as much a panic as Deity was.

"My mom. She was in the kitchen and she just passed out," she broke into uncontrollable sobs again. "I couldn't wake her up. I tried everything but she wouldn't. She was barely breathing so I called the ambulance. They took her but I couldn't go because the device on my ankle would go red. I can't leave the house, Shane. I need to be with her." The room was silent save for Deity's sobs. You didn't have to look into Shane's eyes to know what he felt.

Guilt.

He shouldn't have arrested her. He should have let her off like he did everyone else.

"Deity? Deity, stop crying, alright? And listen to me. You listening? Stay there. I'm gonna be there to pick you up in about five minutes. In those five minutes try calling your sister. Jon is on his way to get her now." He waved a hand at Jon. 'Go find Caden' he mouthed. Jon nodded and was out the door. "I'll take care of the judge and everything else just don't go anywhere till I get you alright?"

"Yes." She whispered. His heart broke at the sound of her voice. He heard a click and knew that she had hung up. He set down the phone softly then picked up his keys and his jacket while heading out the door

~*~

Caden sat on her couch and looked at the text message for the third time. 'Will be home late,' it said. 'Don't wait up. Don't make dinner. Late photo shoot. No biggie.'

'Maybe not for you,' she said to herself. This was sad. Talking to herself was becoming some sort of habit she had developed. She actually carried on decent intellectual conversations with her mind. They entertained her. What kind of photo shoot goes passed ten? Caden ignored the sinking feeling in her gut.

None.

At least not one for an unsuccessful amateur model. She hadn't even seen his portfolio. Her gut knotted up again. She wasn't supposed to think like that yet she couldn't help it.

'But you know I love you.' His words drifted in her head. That was great for him but what about her. She didn't know how she felt. She had been dieing to hear those words. Just to know that it was true. But there had been something in his eyes. An emotion that hadn't sat well with her since. She guessed she loved him. She was pretty sure she did but pretty sure never got anybody a successful marriage. Let alone relationship.

Her phone was ringing again. It had been ringing for the last hour. She glanced at it, making the decision to ignore it again.

Unconsciously she settled deeper into her couch. She had done nothing all day. In the morning her and Jason had stayed in bed an extra 30 minutes only to have her sister interrupt them with nonsense. Jason went to work. Caden ventured to the park to take some pictures and returned home shortly after. She had taken only one picture. She wasn't feeling it anymore. Her agent, Molly, had called earlier claiming that Caden was due for an art show in two days. Jason had taken the message. Caden hadn't heard a thing about it. For the remainder of the day, the gray-eyed girl scrambled together some pieces and faxed them to Molly.

'Poor, poor, planning on your part Cady girl.' Molly had lectured. 'These pieces will suffice but next time ask that boyfriend of yours to write things down.'

Oh, she would. This was her career he was playing with. C.K.'s head jerked up at the sound of a fist pounding on the door. "Coming," she called out, launching herself off the couch. The excessive pounding continued while she unlocked the locks. "Christ, man. I'm right here hold on," She threw the door open ready to verbally knockout her doors assailant but shut her mouth instantly.

It was Jon in all his blonde disheveled beauty

What a surprise. He was like a baby at her doorstep—the last thing she expected to see upon opening the door.

His eyes were wide as if his pupils needed to catch their breath like his lungs were. "Did you run here?" she asked, quietly concerned. C.K. moved aside about to let him in before she caught herself. This was Jon, not Jason, not Collin, not even the electrician. Jon. She had to keep a clear head despite how fast her heart was beating.

"What the hell are you doing here? She closed the door and whispered conspiratorially. "If Jason catches you here then you're fucked. G—"

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