Author Topic: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)  (Read 3660 times)

Bill Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #15 on: April 15, 2016, 12:00:31 PM »
20 Years Ago

Gerry had been missing for weeks.  Nobody could explain it, there were no signs of struggle, no signs of forced entry, not a single shred of evidence.  Which meant one thing:  a lot of questions were directed at the grieving and terrified Finnegans.  Some people looked at them immediately as the culprits in this.  Afterall, it was Bill Finnegan who had gone over to Frank Aimsley's place, roughed him up and took his kid for a month.  Lots of eyes were on him.  Of course, what they didn't know is that Frank Aimsley waited a month before trying to get her back, sending the cops over to Bill's place and having her removed.   No charges had been pressed, but Kara went to bat for him.  This was a thousand times worse.

Bill couldn't believe he was a suspect in the disappearance of his child.  He was utterly devoted to his children, and his son was missing.  The looks people gave him on the street, the way parents shielded their children when he passed in the grocery store, it all broke his heart.  These were his neighbors, his supposed friends.  

He stared into Gerry's empty room.  The police had combed over every bit of that house, little sticky notes all over the place, marking leads that ended up just telling the tale of a kid who didn't like to pick up his toys when he was done playing with them.  "Where'd you go, buddy?"  He whispered into the room.  He heard sounds coming from outside and went into alert mode.  Bill glanced cautiously back toward the room where his wife slept.  With slow, quiet steps he moved into the room.  The sounds coming from behind the curtains at the window.  Part of him was hopeful that he'd pull them back to find his son standing there, just run off or something and back with a changed mind.  He'd be mad, but so relieved.  It was a pleasant fiction.

Of course...he could open it to see the kidnapper...and that filled him with even more dread.  He threw open the curtains and found a skinny 11 year old girl holding onto a tree branch trying to pry the window open.  She let out a little yelp in surprise.  It took him a moment to recognize her in the dark.

"...Kara?"  He said, perplexed.   He opened the window and leaned out, reaching his hands to her.   "What are you doing here?"

"Please, Mr. Finnegan, I didn't mean any trouble!"  He pulled her in through the window.  "I just...I couldn't sleep and...when I was here and I couldn't sleep, I'd come in here...and...and..."  Her face had to scrunch, and the beginnings of a sob in her voice.

Well.  That about broke his heart.  He hugged the girl.  "Sh.  Sh sh's okay."  

Kara clutched to him hard, burying her face against him.  "I just miss him so much."

Bill patted her back gently.  "Me too, Kid.  Me too."


A few minutes later, Kara sat at the dinner table.   Bill walked over with a hot chocolate for her, sliding it over.  He sat down across from her.  The skinny girl smiled up at him.  "Thanks."

Bill just smiled to her, but it was short-lived.  "How are things at home?"

Kara frowned and sipped her cocoa.

"He's not hitting you, is he?"  Bill asked.

"No.  No, not after last time."  She said with a shake of her head.

"Good."  Bill said.

She smiled.  "I think he's especially afraid now that everyone thinks you-"  She stopped herself, realizing that completing that sentence was probably not a very nice thing.  Bill looked to her gravely.  He looked like he'd aged about ten years in the past few weeks.  His usually vibrant eyes looked so tired.  Kara's eyes turned downward at her mug.

"I know you didn't do anything to him."  She said softly.  "I know you wouldn't."

Bill smiled sadly at that.  "Thank you, sweetie.  That's nice of you to say."

"They talked to me.  The cops?"  She said.  It drew his attention.  "Asked me a bunch of questions.  'Was he abused?', 'Did you ever see his father hit him?', 'What was his mood like the last time you saw him?'"  her face showed plain and clear, her annoyance.  "Acted like they knew him.  Said a bunch of stuff like 'he was mad and he ran away' and tried to get me to say yes. They don't know a ****ing thing about Go.  Bunch a' useless dicks..."

She looked to Bill, who stared at her with raised brows.  "Sorry for cursing."

That drew a little laugh out of him.  "It's ok.  Did a bit of cursing myself over this."   He looked over at the clock on the microwave.  "It's getting pretty late, Kara.  We should get you home."

Her brow furrowed at that.  "I don't want to."

Stop it, Kara, he thought.  I can't handle this.  

"If I go home, he'll be there.  He'll be there when I wake up, he'll be there when I go to bed...he'll there, and I hate it!  I hate him, and I hate that house!"  She said.

Bill's eyes slid shut.  " know we love you.  If you need anything you can always come here. have to be there. You live there.  He won't hurt you, I promise. doesn't look good.  You staying over here.  Half this town already thinks we-"  He couldn't even complete that sentence.

God, but Kara looked hurt.  In a rational part of her 11 year old mind, she understood, but this was not a rational moment.  "Please."  She said weakly.  "Please don't make me go back there."

"I *have* to.   Legally, I *have* to."

She stared at him with watery eyes.  Slowly, she nodded.  Kara stood  and stepped away from her chair, Bill following suit.  "Come on, kiddo.  I'll drive you home."


That gave Bill a pause.

"I...I think I'll walk."  She said.

"Please, Kara...don't do anything stupid."

She looked insulted and put her hands on her hips.  "Like what?  Like lose my kid and make the whole town hate me?"

Bill looked more hurt than she'd ever seen him.  He knew she hadn't meant it and was just lashing out, but damn did it cut deep.  His voice was hoarse and quiet.  "Good night, Kara."

Suddenly, Kara looked panicked.  She felt like someone was crushing her heart through her chest.  She just threw herself at him, wrapping her tiny arms around him, clinging for dear life.  Bill put a hand at the top of her head.  After a moment and without a word, she let go and ran out of the house.  Neither knew it at the time, but it would be the last time she would visit for years.  She and Bill would see each other out and about and keep in touch here and there, but she wouldn't return to that house until Gerry came back.

Kara Aimsley

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #16 on: April 15, 2016, 05:38:45 PM »
Present Day

Kara knocked at the door, a box of donuts under one arm.  She looked around the Finnegan front yard and smiled.  It was idyllic around here, especially in the bright, warm spring sun.  She could see a figure moving toward her through the curtained window, voices on the other side.

"Bill, I said get the door!"

"I'm getting it, Woman!  Don't make me come back there and body slam you through the table!"

"Don't make promises you can't keep, Stud."

" sexy little minx, you..."

Kara's nose wrinkled as she laughed softly.  Bill whipped open the door.  "Whaddaya want?!"  He said with faux anger.

Kara put on an innocent face.  "Sir, do you have a moment to talk about the Lord?"

Bill dramatically rolled her eyes.  "Ohhhh boy.  No thanks, Jesus Freak, keep on walkin'."  He turned, slamming the door in her face.

Kara just laughed and pounded on the door.  "But, Hell!  Hell and damnation and fire!"

Bill opened the door again.  "Get in here, goof!"  The two hugged as she stepped inside.  "What are you doing over here?"  He asked.

Kara, pushed her hair behind her ear.  "I was in the neighborhood and thought I'd stop by."  She held up the box of donuts.  "I come bearing gifts."

Bill's eyes widened.  "We accept this offering of doughnuts only if they include jelly filled nuts of dough."

Kara made a sassy face at him opened the box.  "Who you talkin' to, old man?"  

"Ooooh.  This shall please the Gods.  Come on in." he lead the way into the kitchen.  "What's up?"

Kara followed.  "Not much."  She said as she walked over to Rose, who was sitting at the table, reading the paper.  "Hey, Mrs. F."  the two exchanged quick kisses on the cheek.

"G'morning, sweetie."  Rose said with a smile, setting down her paper.  Bill stepped back to the stove, cooking breakfast.

"Kara brought us donuts to go with the eggs and bacon."  He pointed at Kara,  "Eggs?  Bacon for you?"

She looked a little put off for a moment.  "  That's okay, I don't want to put you out."  She totally wanted some.

Bill blew a raspberry.  "Oh, hush.  I always make too much."

Rose glanced up to Kara, a withering look on her face.  "If I didn't let him eat unconscionable amounts of bacon, he'd never cook."

A quiet chuckle left Kara.  She loved the two of them so damn much.  This, she thought, was what a family was supposed to be like.  What she missed out on with her own parents.  Bill opened the oven and flipped over the bacon.  

"So?"  He said, shooting her a sidelong glance.

Kara chewed on a cruller, with a raised brow.  "What?"

"You two went out the other night and then show up together the next day."  Bill said with a smirk.

She nodded.  "Mm.  We did."

Bill gave her a weary look, he was going to have to pull this out of her.  "How'd it go?"

That brought a wry little smirk to her face.  "Oh.  Well, I hate to disappoint you, Pops, but nothing happened."

"I know that!  But...anything?  Even a hint?"  He said.

Kara tried to look like she was taking it in-stride and shrugged.  "He's still in love with her.  And, I mean...that' have to expect that."

Rose nodded, acknowledging it made sense.  Bill sighed.  "Yeah...I suppose in his shoes, I'd be the same way."

Kara looked between the two of them.  "I need you to do me a favor."

Bill turned to her.  "Sure.  Anything."

"Don't pressure him."  She pointed specifically to Bill, which, of course made Rose grin.  He mouthed "me" and put a hand to his chest.

"I'm serious.  We might end up together, we might stay friends.  I like him.  I do.  But he might not ever feel the same way.  If he does...I want it to be because HE wants me, not because he was made to feel like he SHOULD."  Yes, the thought of him never reciprocating her feelings crushed her, but she would rather have him for real than have him feel obligated to be with her.

Bill's grin faded as she explained.  Eventually, he nodded.  Rose, however was the one to speak.  "We understand.  We just both love you so much, honey.  Maybe we got a little too heavy handed and lost sight of the situation."

Bill looked a little bit ashamed and nodded.  

Kara gave them each a reassuring smile.  "Thank you for trying, though."

BIll pulled the bacon out of the oven and turned to her.  "And if it doesn't work, we get him drunk, take him to Vegas and we trick 'im.  That's how you get the best ones.  You trick 'em."  He turned to Rose with smirk  "Right sweetie."

Rose sighed and picked up her paper again.  "Yes, dear."  Her eyes flicked up to Kara and rolled ever so hard, getting a chuckle from her.

Gerard Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #17 on: April 18, 2016, 05:16:50 PM »
It was a typical night at the bar, the regulars, some newer female clientele come to see the man behind the bar, some kids home from college that had Gerry checking ID's like crazy.  A nice warm breeze blew in from open doors, AC/DC playing over the din of the crowd.  He had grown to actually enjoy the job.  It wasn't as physically demanding or strenuous as his old place, but with Kara as his boss, he might as well have been his own boss.  If there was one thing he missed at that job, it was the people.  There were no pirates here, no odd creatures.  There was not ONE minotaur employed anywhere in his current area code.  What the hell was that?

He slid a glass to the little blonde standing in front of him and smiled to her.  His attention was pulled to Kara, dressed in a tight white top that just accentuated her...attributes.  A man was standing there, about 5'11".  Slinky with long hair pulled back in a pony tail, and a goatee.  The look and attire of a biker to him.  She looked less than pleased to see him.

"Hello, Tim."  She said curtly., her posture sending out a strong 'get the **** away from me' vibe.

He fairly sneered at her, his eyes travelling along her body.  "Hey there, baby.  Lookin' damn fine tonight."

Her face remained icy.  "What do you want, Tim?"  Kara said.

"I'm back!  I'm back in town!"  He said as if this was something she should be happy about.

"Good for you.  What do you want to drink?"  She said, feeling like she hadn't blinked in hours.

"Aw, come on baby, don't be like that."  He said.

"Don't be like that?"  She asked him incredulously.  "You got drunk and beat the **** out of me and then stole my car and wrapped it around a telephone pole.  How would you like me to be?"

Gerry frowned.  He couldn't hear it all, but he didn't like what he could.  

"Look."  She said.  "Why don't you just turn your ass around and get the hell out of here."

"That's no way to talk to an old friend."  He said with a dangerous edge to his voice.

"Well, then it's a good thing we're not friends, then, isn't it?"  she spat back at him.  "Get out of here or I'll tell every woman in this bar what a tiny pecker you're packing."

He narrowed his eyes.  "You know, you should watch your mouth, slut."

Gerry stepped up behind her, his green shirt clinging to his well-muscled chest, short sleeves strained against his large arms.  Tim's eyes flicked up at him, Gerry staring down at the man like an insect.  "Hey, Kara.  Customer at the other end has a question."

She looked up at him, sharply.  She softened a bit and even offered him a small smile.  Gerry kept a stone face and nodded to her, his eyes staying on her as she walked away.  Slowly his gaze returned to Tim, a friendly smile coming to his face.  "How's it going, man?  What can I get you?"

Tim smirked at the brawny man.  "So, who the hell are you?"

Gerry glanced behind him and turned around acting apologetic.  "Sorry.  Fresh out.  Maybe you should try down the street."

The rangy man let out a laugh.  "You the big man around here, huh?"

"Big man?  Nah.  Hurlihiegh's clockin' in at 425.  Me?  I'm just a 6'2", 250 lb man who is very protective of his friends."  Gerry's jovial facade faded slightly.  "So...I'll say it again.  If you're not gonna order anything?  Get out."

Tim stared him down.  There were men who might have bent to this guy, but Gerry wasn't one of them.  He stared right back.  Eventually the smaller man just laughed.  "Place is **** hole anyway."  

Tim turned and started walking for the door, turning and walking backwards.  "Kara!  I'll be seein' you around.  See you real soon."  

Gerry's eyes remained locked on him until he was gone.  Kara shot him a thankful look and went back to work.

They were cleaning up for the night, Kara counting down the cash register while Gerry loaded the dishwasher.  Financially, it had been a good night.  But Gerry was concerned.  He stepped out from the kitchen and rested a shoulder against the doorway, drying off his hands.   Kara was counting down the cash, just finishing up.  

" wanna tell me who that was?"  He asked.

She didn't look up, just kept counting.  "Who who was?"

He made derisive little noise  "You know who."

Kara sighed.  "He was my boyfriend."

"Was?"  Gerry asked.

"Yeah, why?  Was there a warmth between the two of us that I missed?"  She asked him sarcastically.

"What happened?"  He asked.

"It was a long time ago."  Kara turned to him.  "Before you even came here the first time."

"Kara.  What happened?"

She sighed and slipped the money in the envelope before reaching into the cooler and snagging a beer.  She was stalling, he knew, but he would wait.  "3 years ago, I was...with him.  He would come and stay at  my place and he'd get...really, really drunk."  She stared off, calling it all from her memory.  "The good nights were the ones where he'd just pass out."

Gerry could tell where it was heading.  She continued, "But some nights...he'd get violent."  Kara took a long drink off her bottle.  "Well, one night, he comes over, pounding on the door, and I can already tell he's gone."  She shook her head.  "So...I let him in.  He starts in about  how he's going to kill this guy who pissed him off, and I'm trying to calm him down.  I tell him 'Don't do that, you don't wanna do that.'"  

Kara's eyes shut.  "Well...he hits me.  Punches me in the face." She said, her voice quieting.  "Tells me never to tell him what to do."  She nodded slowly, Gerry watching her as he listened.

"Well, that set me off.  I get off the floor, my nose bleeding, and I jump on him and start hitting and swearing at him, telling him to get the **** out of my apartment."  This blue eyes slid up to Gerry, she set her jaw.  "He threw me off of him onto my coffee table.  Broke the damn thing in half.  He just starts hitting me over and over again, calling me...vile names."  Kara shivered at the memory.  "Broke my arm, got a nasty cut on my back, almost shattered my eye socket.  My vision in my left eye is still not the same."

"Jesus..." Gerry said in a quiet voice.

"That's not all.  He takes my keys, gets in my car and tries to run.  But the bastard's so drunk, he veers off the road and slams into a pole."  She said a bitter laugh in her words.

"How the hell is he back?"  Gerry asked her.

"His brother's a cop.  They downplayed it.  Got him a reduced sentence.  Said I attacked him and it was self defense and he had lost control.  And because they found wounds on him that were not defensive, he did 90 days and was let go."  She nodded chewing her lower lip.  

"Where's he been?"

"No idea.  Heard him and some of his buddies had moved to Dallas for a bit.  But..." She shrugged.

"Alright." Gerry said.  "I'm walking you to your car from now on."

"Really, that won't be-"

"Kara."  He said firmly.  "This guy is dangerous.  Let me do this.  I won't have you getting roughed up again."

A small smile crossed her lips.  "You're sweet."  She grabbed her purse and stuck her hand in.  "But this is Texas."  She pulled out a snub-nosed revolver carefully with two fingers.  "He comes after me, he'd better pack a lunch, because he's going on a real quick road trip to Hell."

Gerry looked at the pistol, and then to her.  "You know how to use that?"  He asked her, his voice deadly serious.

"Yeah, it's got this real simple point and shoot interface."  She said with a smirk.

"You ever have to?"

Kara's smirk faded and she tucked it back away.  "No."

"It's different when it's not a target at the end of the barrel."  Gerry didn't talk to her like he was lecturing, he didn't raise his voice.  He just smiled sadly.  "I hope you never have to."

The two of them stood in silence for a long while when he spoke.  "Come on.  I'll walk you out."
[i:df9d511a7f]To these memories I will hold
With your blessing I will go
To turn at last to paths that lead home[/i:df9d511a7f]


Gerard Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #18 on: April 25, 2016, 02:57:15 AM »
Freddie Prinz Jr. glanced over to Rachel Leigh cook.  "D'You always where those glasses?"  He asked her.  

"Yeah, why?"  She responded.  Freddie turned his eyes back to the street in front of them.  

"No reason."  For a long moment, he weighed his options on how to play this.  Again, he glanced to her.  "You ever think about contacts?"

Rachel shrugged, scrunching up her face.  She shook her head and looked at him.  "I have them, I just..." She pulled off her glasses, "never wear them."  

She looked at the glasses in her hands.  "I dunno, the idea of just...touching my eye is-"

"Cuz your eyes are really... "Freddie reached up and adjusted her glasses, giving his best dashing smile to her.  "Beautiful."

"Oh, **** you!"  Gerry yelled at the screen.  Kara laughed and elbowed him, throwing a shush his way.

Rachel Leigh Cook's eyes went wide.  "Oh....please!"

"What?"  Freddie asked.

Rachel gave him a disbelieving look  "'Your eyes are really beautiful?'"  She repeated as if it was the most ridiculous thing she'd ever heard.  "You really broke out the big guns with that one, didn't you?"

Gerry grinned.  "I love this girl."  Kara had insisted on them watching this movie.  Said it was required viewing when it came out.  "But come on.  THAT girl would have dudes BEGGING for her."

"Quit yer bitchin', Finnegan."

"I'm just saying.  If SHE'S the ugly duckling, I want to live in that town."  He said with a grin.

Kara looked to him.  "Well, when I was awkward as hell in high school, it felt kinda good to imagine myself being a make-over away from looking like her."

"Rough time?"

She snorted.  "I was 14 when that movie came out.  I was skinny, had almost NO boobs, these long-ass legs I wasn't used to,  and I TRIED to do a sort of....Gwen Stefani/Coolio thing with my hair.  It didn't really work."  She shot a look back him.

Gerry made a wincing face.  "Bleach blonde?"

Kara shut her eyes and looked away dramatically.  Slowly she nodded.  Gerry looked at her in horror.

"Did you wear the-"  He started

"Jnco jeans.  Yep."  She turned to him.  "It was a dark time."

Gerry chuckled "Hey, I envy your poor teenage fashion choices.  I had, like...2 pairs of pants and 3 shirts that I wore for weeks at a time when the only way of washing them was leaving them out in a rain storm."

Kara wrinkled her nose at him.  "Ew."

Gerry nodded.  "Yeah, it got pretty grodey."

Kara leaned her head against the back of the couch, green eyes on him, a smile on her face.  "What was it like?  Living on a ship?"

One corner of Gerry's mouth twitched into a slight grin.  "Pretty awful."  He chuckled.  "But there were some moments...where you'd walk outside to a sunset or in the middle of the night...and it would just be wiiiide open...nothing but stars and the water."

Gerry seemed distant for moment, reminiscing.  "Some nights I would lay there and stare up at the stars while all the other crew were asleep.  I'd wonder if my parents or you were back home looking at that same sky."  Gerry's smile faded.  "Wasn't even the same stars."

Kara's eyes turned downcast.  "What did you do?"

"I lied to myself.  Pretended I was somewhere else as long as I could. was beautiful.  You ever been out on the ocean at night?  The moonlight rippling on the water.  Your boat bobbing gently?"  A wistful smile crept back to his face.

Kara shook her head.  "Nope.  Not a big water person."

"It's serene.  Peaceful.  Nothing but you and hundreds of miles of sea.  Boundless potential in all directions.  Treasure, glory, adventure...You never knew what was out there.  It made you feel small in a good way."  He said to her.  Kara's green eyes rested on him, a sad smile on her lips.

"I used to do the star thing, too.  Go out on the roof outside my window and stare up at the stars, wonder where you were."  She swallowed hard.  "I did that for a long time before I gave up, G."

One thing Gerry hated was causing people pain.  It seemed to be a pattern with him, though.  No matter how hard he tried, no matter what he did, someone always ended up hurt.    "I'm sorry."

She shrugged, turning back to the movie.  "It's not your fault."  She narrowed her eyes at him suspiciously.  "It BETTER not be."  She pointed at him threateningly.  

Gerry chuckled at that.  "Oh yeah.  I ran off and got my ass kicked by pirates for 8 years just to get away from your skinny ass."

Kara put on a faux offended expression.  "Excuse ME, sir, my ass was...was...Okay, yeah, it was bony.  BUT IT GOT BETTER!"  She said defensively.

Gerry laughed and shook his head.   She looked at him wide eyed and leaned away from him..  "It DID!  Dude, check that badboy out, you could bounce quarters off this thing!"

He continued laughing.  She settled back in.  "Whatevs.  My ass is awesome."

"Okay, okay.  You have a nice butt."  He said.

Kara threw her arms up.  "Dude!"  She groaned.  "Stop lookin' at my butt!"

She crossed her arms, shaking her head as if she was disappointed.  "Perv."
[i:df9d511a7f]To these memories I will hold
With your blessing I will go
To turn at last to paths that lead home[/i:df9d511a7f]


Gerard Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #19 on: May 02, 2016, 02:30:01 AM »
Gerry had just cleared down for the evening.  Kara wasn't feeling good, so she had stayed home and left him on his own.  If there was one thing he'd learned from this evening it was that he was NEVER working a Saturday night on his own again.  If he had to get Ginny's happy ass down there to serve drinks, he'd do it.  He was just exhausted.  

He let out a sigh as the front door opened, interrupting him counting down the register.  "We're closed."

"Ahh...but I was really hoping to grab a beer."  He heard the voice say behind him.  An antagonistic air to the words that he recognized from a couple weeks earlier.  Gerry turned to find Tim standing there, black leather vest and a pair of ratty jeans.  That black greasy hair pulled back in ponytail and a smirk on his slim goateed face.  Gerry glared at him, watching him approach.

"Maybe you didn't hear me."  Gerry said in a low voice.  "The Bar's closed."

Tim looked up at him, amused.  "That a fact?  Huh.  Must have lost track of time.  Well, that's alright.  I'm a friend of the owner, so, how about you pour me a beer?"  He sneered at Gerry.

"How get the hell out of here...before I beat the **** out of you and *throw* you out?"  Gerry asked him.  "Sound like a plan?"

Tim chuckled and looked around the bar.   "Let me tell you a little story, Jeff."

"Gerry.  And I'm not interested."

"Nah, you'll love this one.  See there was this guy once.  Had himself a girl.  But the girl....see, she had a bit of a mouth on her. "  He put his hands on the bartop, Gerry glancing down to them and then back at him, the tension in the air could be cut and served like wedding cake.   "So...this guy, he has to rough her up a bit.  Because, the bitch's gotta learn not to mouth off, don't she?"

Gerry knew he was talking about his past Kara and it took every ounce of his strength not to choke the life out of him right then and there.

"One night, this guy, he gets a little tanked up and things get outta hand.  So, he leaves a bit.   And you know what he does?"

"Takes up knitting?"

Tim let out a little laugh at that.  "No.  He moves to Dallas.  Gets a job collecting debts from low lives who don't know their place."

Gerry crossed those huge arms in front of him.  Despite his size, Tim didn't seem at all concerned about him.

"One night, this guy has to stab a guy.  You ever stab someone to death, Jeff?"

Gerry didn't answer, he just stared at him.

"Helluva thing, watchin' the light leave a man's eyes.  Ain't like shootin' 'em.  Nah.   Nah, this way he knows what's happenin'.  Every.  Step."  Tim stood up straight, looking Gerry right in the eyes.  "See, he forgot his place."

Tim stared at the larger bartender for a long moment.  "Best you start recognizing your's.  Understood?"

Gerry nodded slowly, sucking his bottom lip and wetting it with his tongue.  "Yeah.   Yeah.  Now let me spin you a little bedtime yarn.  I know this guy named Jeff.  And Jeff doesn't take well to threats.  And this little prick, let's call him...Jim.   Jim's a lowlife piece of **** who beats on women and thinks he's a big man.  Well, one night Jim came into Jeff's bar and starts barking threats. "  Gerry feigned laughter  "Oh ho ho...Jeff didn't like that.  And if Jim wants to leave with his nuts intact, he better do so immediately.  Because Jeff's had just about enough of him."  He stared the biker down, unflinching and unafraid.  "You have no idea who I am, where I've been, or what I am capable of.  You want to take a swing at me, go ahead.  But I promise you, I'll be the last man standing, you ****ing degenerate."

Tim's grin faded somewhere in the middle of all that.  He took a couple steps back and let out an incredulous laugh.  "You might wanna watch your back from now on, muscles.  I came in here outta courtesy to your little girlfriend there.  But now?  All bets are off, pal.  Have a good night."

"Get the **** out of here."  Gerry said, watching him leave, eyes glancing down to the pistol that sat under the bar.  In Rhydin it was Jameson.  Here it was this guy.  It seemed no matter where he went, there was always someone like that.  Always someone who wanted a fight.
[i:df9d511a7f]To these memories I will hold
With your blessing I will go
To turn at last to paths that lead home[/i:df9d511a7f]


Gerard Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #20 on: May 02, 2016, 08:45:44 PM »
Gerry sat with Nasya in his arms, humming "Dream A Little Dream" to her.  The almost 6 month old smiling up at him, making little noises up at her father.  The singing always seemed to calm her.  If only it did the same for him.  The events of last night weighed heavily on his mind.  Kept him up.  It was one thing to pick fights with a psycho when you were a bachelor, but now there was this little girl involved.  And God help Tim if he came anywhere NEAR Nasya.  

He stared down at those big blue eyes, her mother's eyes and smiled before kissing her forehead.  "Love you, munchkin.  You know that?"  He said to his daughter.  His attention was drawn to a was like glass shattering and then a hard impact.  His brow raised, hearing it.

"Gerry?"  Ginny's voice came from the living room...a tone of worry to it.  Gerry stepped out into the living room to find Ginny staring out the window.  

"What's up, Gin?"

She glanced over her shoulder, those wide round blue eyes turning back to him, concerned.  "You better take a look at this."

Gerry's brow furrowed.  This couldn't be good.  He stepped over to the window and looked outside.  The windows of his truck were smashed in, all four tires slashed, and an ax embedded in the windshield.  He saw red, his chest rising as he filled with rage.  "Take the the baby."


"I said take the baby!" He handed Nasya off to Ginny and stormed over to the closet.  

"Gerry, what are you gonna do?"

Gerry aggressively searched the closet, deaf to her words.

"Gerry!"  She shouted, startling Nasya into a crying fit.

He pulled down a crowbar and started toward the door.  "Stay here."

Ginny moved after him.  "Gerry! No!  Don't!"  

"Stay here, Ginny!"

"Gerry! Please!"  She held onto Nasya with one arm and grabbed his arm with her free hand.  He wrenched away.

"I said stay here!"  He slammed the door behind him before she could protest.  Ginny's eyes were rimmed with tears as she tried to calm Nasya, shushing her lightly.

Gerry rushed down the stairs and stepped outside, crowbar in-hand.  His truck was beat to hell, shattered glass sparkling in the moonlight.  His arms spread out as he looked around, they were nowhere to be found.  "COME ON!  COME ON, YOU ****ING COWARDS!  I'M RIGHT HERE!"  He shouted into the night.  "YOU WANT A FIGHT?!  LET'S GO!  RIGHT NOW!"

There was no response.  Just silence.  Tim and whoever helped him were gone, but the message was loud and clear.

Gerry stormed back inside moving toward the closet.  Ginny approached him slowly.  "Gerry..."

"Ginny,"  He started.  "I want you to stay here.  Look after Nasya."

"Gerry, no!"  She protested.

"I'm going after them."


"They're not getting away with this.  This is our home."  He said, not even listening.

"Gerry, just call the cops!"

"Why?!  So they can put them in lock up and have them come back tomorrow?  **** that!  I'm going over there-"

"GOD DAMN IT, GERRY THIS ISN'T RHYDIN!"  She shouted over him.  That gave him pause.  

"You can't just go all vigilante here!"  she continued.  "That's what he wants!  He wants you to get all worked up and come after him!  Well, you're not doing that!"

Gerry was coming to his senses and guilt was setting in.

"You don't get to leave us, you *** hole!"  Ginny yelled with tears in her eyes.  She stared at him a long moment before turning away and trying to comfort the baby.

Gerry knew she was right.  They'd probably kill him if he tracked them down to wherever they were hiding out.  He sighed and moved over to his sister, putting a hand on her shoulder.  "I'm sorry.   Gin..."

She turned back to him with those sad blue eyes.

"I'm sorry."

He wrapped her and Nasya up in a hug and Ginny buried her forehead against his chest.
[i:df9d511a7f]To these memories I will hold
With your blessing I will go
To turn at last to paths that lead home[/i:df9d511a7f]


Gerard Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #21 on: May 04, 2016, 02:33:23 AM »
A few days had passed since the incident with Gerry's truck.  They'd called the cops and they were investigating, but Tim and his friends left little evidence that could implicate them.  And the damages to the truck were substantial.  The windows on all 4 doors busted, the windshield destroyed by the ax embedded in it, all 4 tires slashed, a dented to hell quarter panel, and a headlight smashed in.  It would end up running him over 5 grand to repair.  And in no way did he have that kind of money.  Not anymore, anyway.

His parents had picked up Nasya until Ginny got off work.  Kara was waiting outside in the apartment parking lot to drive him to work, Whitesnake blaring out the windows of the beat-up old hatch back.   She pointed at him with a smile, her eyes covered by Aviator's  "Here I go again, on my ow-oh-own!  Goin' down the only roaaaaad I've evah knowwwwn!"  

Gerry couldn't help but chuckle as he approached the car.  Kara leaned out the window.  "Hey, little boy, you want some candy?"

"My momma said never to take candy from strangers."

"Yeah, but I got Twix.  It doesn't count if it's Twix."

Gerry smirked.  "Will there be funny stories?"

"Funny stories and fingerstuff!  Get in!"

Gerry laughed as he slid into the passenger seat of that crappy old car.  "What's up?"  He greeted her, pulling the seatbelt across his chest.

"Nada, man.  SSDD."  She put the car in reverse and pulled out of the spot.  "How are you doin'?"  She asked him with a twinge of guilt in her voice.

Gerry grimaced at that one.  "Good as can be expected.  Cops said he didn't leave a hair or a fingerprint...nothing on the ax.  Not a single thing to connect him to it."

She turned those brilliant blue eyes to him, for a moment before turning down the radio.  For a bit, they drove in silence.  "Go...I'm...I'm sorry.  I feel like this is all my fault."

HE turned to her with a quirked eyebrow.  "What?  My truck?" he asked.

Kara shook her head.  "All of it.  Tim threatening you and then going to your HOME..."  She turned to him again.  "You don't deserve that."

Gerry smiled at that.  "Well...I'm used to it.  And it's not your fault he's a psychopath.  It'll be okay, K.  I've dealt with worse people than him."  That was true.  People like him were the reason he was there to begin with.

Kara nodded slowly, silent for a long moment.  "What if he comes again?"

"If he comes anywhere near my daughter, it'll be the last thing he does.  I guarantee that."  

Kara frowned at that.  "Don't do anything stupid.  I don't want to lose you.  I pretty much just got you back."  She glanced to him offering a worried little smile.

"I'm not goin' anywhere."  He said to her reassuringly.  That made her smile.  "What did you see in that guy?"  he asked her.

She blushed and sighed annoyed at herself.  "He had that kinda...bad boy thing going.  You know, there were stories about him and I was lonely and stupid...and he paid attention to me."  She shrugged.  "For those first couple months he was sweet as can be.  Then...well..You know."  She said, sparing him a repeat of what happened.

"How is that possible?" He asked her.

"What?"  she asked him.

"A woman like you?"  He said, nodding to her.  "How does someone like you end up lonely?  You're gorgeous."

Kara blushed and smiled at that.  Any compliment from him tended to send the butterflies aflutter.  She shook it off and focused on the road.  "Promise you won't judge me?"

"Of course."

"I was a bit of an addict in my early 20's.  Pills, coke...stuff like that.  Really into oxy.  It got bad.  Really bad.  I..uh...I ended up in the hospital after ODing one night."

Gerry looked horrified for her.  "Jesus...Kara..."

She bit her lip and nodded.  "After that, I got cleaned up.  Haven't done anything more than drink since."  She swallowed.  "But then, everyone knew.  Nobody really approached me.  Plus, I developed a bit of rep for being kind of a hard-ass, I guess.  Not exactly the girl most guys want to go after.  Plus...most guys here weren't looking for something...more than a fling."  That brought a frown to her face.  "Lotta disappointment there."

"Well, they missed out."  He said with a smile.

That drew a little laugh from her.  "With the drug addicted chick with a short fuse?  I was a bag of issues, man."

Gerry stared at her.  "You deserved better."

Kara turned to him.  "So did you.  You're an amazing man, Gerry Finnegan.  Any woman who winds up with you is lucky.  I know I'd kill for someone like you."  She looked back out the windshield, it slowly occurring to her that she might have crossed the line there.   She looked over again, worried.  "I'm sorry if that was...weird.  I know you're trying to-"

"It's okay.  It was nice.  Thank you. "  He smiled to her.  "I'd be lucky to have you.  Anyone would."
[i:df9d511a7f]To these memories I will hold
With your blessing I will go
To turn at last to paths that lead home[/i:df9d511a7f]


Gerard Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #22 on: May 04, 2016, 11:49:16 AM »
Gerry and Kara had finished out the evening at the bar.  Weeknights were always slow and tonight was no exception.  The pair of them stepped outside, Kara locking up as Gerry went to the parking lot.

'Finnegan!"  That voice rang out in the night.  Kara's head snapped toward it, immediately knowing the speaker.  Gerry turned slowly toward Tim.  He wasn't alone.  There were three other men with him, all bruisers, all looking ready to fight.  

"What?  No Jeff this time."  Gerry asked.

Tim walked toward him ominously.  "Nah.  Nah, see I'm a quick learner.  You, on the other hand..."

Kara watched on in horror.  Gerry was a BIG man, but there were a lot of them.  Of COURSE Tim wouldn't take him on one on one.  Gerry peered around Tim at his friends.  "What's the cheering section for?"

Tim grinned "Oh, I think you know why they're here."

Gerry raised his brows, staring a hole right through the smaller man.  A small laugh left him "Yeah?  What's the matter?  Scared?  Yeah, you're not going to be fighting a 100lb girl this time, I guess."

Tim's smug little smirk left him.  "Oh.  You're a real tough guy, huh?"

Gerry shrugged in response.  "Don't need to be tough to get through a tangle with a scrawny tool like you."

"That so?"  Tim said with a laugh, looking to his friends for validation.  Suddenly, Tim threw a right cross at Gerry.  But he was prepared, catching his fist.  Even then, the bikers were moving toward him.  Gerry headbutted Tim as hard as he could, sending the man to the ground.  He managed to turn around in time to catch the first biker's attack.  A lead pipe was swung at him, but he managed to catch it and wrestle it away, swinging wildly with it, catching his attacker's jaw.  

Kara fumbled with her keys trying to unlock the bar again, desperate.    A wood baseball bat slammed across Gerry's back, and sent him stumbling forward, but he didn't go down.  That second attacker kept moving though, swinging the bat again.  Gerry swung back with the pipe, knocking away the bat and then reversed the swipe to hit the biker in the face.  Out of nowhere, he was tackled from the side by a particularly burly biker, hitting the pavement hard.  Suddenly, Gerry was back on that ship from his youth, fighting for sport.  He could almost hear the shouts.  The two of them struggled in the dirty pavement of that parking lot, but Gerry eventually got the upperhand and went to work.  He pounded his fist into that third attacker's face again and again and again.  The biker's hand trying to come up and protect himself until Gerry knocked it aside and hit him again.

He was winning!  


The baseball bat slammed across his shoulders, sending him to the ground.  Tim stood over him, blood pouring from his busted nose.  "Yeah.  ****in' tough guy, huh?"  He brough the bat down on Gerry's side, cracking a few ribs with that hit.  Gerry howled in agony, pain radiating through his entire body.  "Come on, big man!"  Tim said maliciously.  "Get up and kick my ass!"

Again, he hit him, another scream of agony as Gerry was hit in the back again.  He crawled toward the discarded lead pipe before Tim kicked it away, just when it was nearing his reach.  "Oh, nonono.  Not tonight, pal."  He turned and kicked Gerry in the face with a steel-toed boot, blood bursting from a new gash to his face as he rolled onto his back.  Tim hit him hard in the chest with that bat, Gerry curling inward with the impact.  

That boot slammed into Gerry's side again, hitting those already broken ribs.  His screams echoing in the parking lot as the other Bikers were shakily getting to their feet.  Tim placed the bat against Gerry's cheek, making the downed goliath look up at him.  "You ****ed with the WRONG bull, *** hole."  He brought that bat up to bring down on Gerry's head.  It felt like an eternity as he saw everything flash before him.  The ship, his friends, his business in Rhydin, his parents, Ginny, Kara,  Nasya...and Keirra.  Keirra who would never know how he died.  Why he left.  He saw joy and pain, love and hate, the good times and the bad all at once.  This was it.  This was the end.
[i:df9d511a7f]To these memories I will hold
With your blessing I will go
To turn at last to paths that lead home[/i:df9d511a7f]


Kara Aimsley

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #23 on: May 06, 2016, 03:14:57 PM »
The gunshot rang out in the parking lot, the bullet plowing through Tim's shoulder, just as the bat was coming down.  A mist of red burst behind him as the bullet exited.  Tim stumbled back, the bat clanging harmlessly on the ground.  Kara stared wide-eyed behind the barrel of her pistol as Tim hit the ground.  She's done it.  Holy ****, she'd just shot someone!  That was...oddly cathartic.  Huh.

The other bloody and battered bikers all stopped in their tracks, looking at the woman and contemplating their next move.  Kara came back to reality and quickly she turned the gun on them.   Their hands raised as they looked on her, wary of testing her willingness to pull the trigger.

"GO!   GET THE **** OUT OF HERE BEFORE I CHANGE MY MIND!"  She screamed at them, her voice ragged.  One of them moved to help Tim up.    She stepped forward, raising the weapon at him, those beautiful blue eyes turned deadly, filled with rage.  "Leave.  Him."  She growled.

The burly biker, his face gashed and bleeding, paused a moment.  She was not screwing around.  He slowly held up his hands and stepped away.  Kara gestured with the weapon.  "Go.  All of you."

One by one they made their exit, her heart pounding as she made sure they left, her arms trembling before she finally lowered the gun.   Gerry lay there, weak and battered, his eyes bleary from that vicious kick to his head.  A deep cash was just pouring blood down his cheeks like crimson tears.  Tim had hit him HARD.  She knelt beside him and gently touched his face.  "It's're gonna be okay. The cops are coming."  He barely seemed to register her there.  God, he looked so helpless, and it was tearing her apart.

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Tim stir and start to make the effort to get up.  A fire was burning inside of her and that was a gas tanker dropped into the inferno.  Oh, hell no, that son of a bitch wasn't walking away.  Kara rose up, her hand clutching her pistol like a lifeline.  She stalked over to him quickly and brought her booted heel down into his ribs, sending him sprawling onto his back.  White-hot hatred in her eyes, she stomped on the entrance wound at his shoulder, drawing agonized howls from the greasy biker.  The pistol leveled at his head, her eyes rimmed with angry, bitter tears, she stomped again, drawing further screams from him.

"You should have stayed gone, you piece of ****."  She growled at him.  "You should be in a ditch somewhere being eaten by rats, or at the bottom of the ****ing ocean, rotting, getting picked apart piece by piece."  Kara's voice shook as she spoke.  She had never known this kind of righteous fury, and now it coursed through her entire being.  

Kara pressed her foot  against the wound again, Tim groaning in pain.    She glared down at him with pitiless eyes.  "But no.  No, monsters like you always come slithering back, don't you?"  She bent down and put the barrel up against his forehead.  

"Well, not this time, you piece of ****!"  She pushed his head back against the pavement with the weapon.  

"Please..." He managed to eke out through the pain.

"What's that?"  She tilted her head incredulously.  "Are you begging?"

For the first time, she saw him afraid.  Terrified.  Tim stared up at her like she was the angel of death, and somewhere deep down...she enjoyed it.

"Remember when I begged you to let me go that night?  When you grabbed me by the hair...put me into a choke hold?"  She turned the gun to the side and jammed that barrel against his temple.  "You said...'Shut your mouth, bitch.' And then you threw me into a wall.  Remember that?"  

He tried to grab at her with his good arm, but she wasn't having it, she just knocked his arm aside and pushed his head against the pavement with her gun.  "You want mercy now?  You?!  You, who then punched me again and again and again until I couldn't breathe.  Couldn't speak.  You want mercy now?" Kara thumbed back the hammer on the pistol, her teeth grit.  "Guess again, asshole."

He squeezed his eyes shut, waiting for the inevitable.  Kara stared down at this flea, this speck of a man cowering beneath her.  He deserved death.  He deserved to be removed from this world.  He was a violent, abusive murderer, a bully.  And he would NEVER change.  She was doing the world a favor!

But...why hadn't she pulled the trigger?  Her finger hovered over it, but unable to apply the minuscule amount of pressure it would take to end him.  She tried.  God, she tried.  But she just couldn't do it.  She looked over at Gerry, barely breathing on the ground before turning back to Tim.  Finally, she swallowed hard and  leaned back on her knees.  She would not become him.  She was not a killer.  Slowly, Kara got to her feet.  "You're not worth a bullet."  She said to him in a pained, angry voice.  In the distance she could hear the sirens approaching, her gaze turned back to Tim.  "You try to leave, I shoot you in the knee.  You don't need that to live."

With that, she moved over to Gerry, talking and trying to comfort him until the cops arrived.

Bill Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #24 on: May 09, 2016, 03:14:37 PM »
Bill paced in the waiting room of the hospital, Ginny and Rose sitting and attending to Nasya.  They were at least trying to project an aura of calm, but Bill was ragged.  His heart has sank when Kara called and he snapped into action, getting everyone together.  But now, all he could do was wait and it was killing him.

The doors opened and Kara stepped out, looking exhausted, her make up runny from tears.  Bill's eyes snapped to her, a sigh of relief leaving the worried father.  He walked up to her, the two wrapping their arms around each other.  Kara buried her face against him, holding tight.  Bill put a comforting hand at the back of her head.  "How is he?"

Kara clung to the the man she considered her real father, grateful for him being there, yet again.  "He's under."  She said weakly.  "7 broken ribs, a cracked sternum...they're still checking his back now, but they think he shouldn't have any damage there."  She swallowed hard.  "They're going to bring him in for a CT scan.   He just..."  The tears had come back, filling her bloodshot eyes.  "He looked so bad, Dad..."

Bill put her cheeks in his hands and looked her in the eye.  "Kara.  Look at me.  He's gonna be okay.  Alright?"  He shook his head slowly.  "Nothing's wrong until something's wrong.  Okay?"

She just leaned her forehead against chest.  Bill kissed the top of her head and let her rest there a moment.  George Miller, an officer with the local PD stepped up.  "Excuse me.  I'm sorry, Bill, we have to ask Ms. Aimsley a few questions about what happened."  

Bill looked to her a moment.  "You okay to talk."  

For a moment she looked afraid, but she just swallowed it and nodded.  Bill took the girl's shoulders in his hands.  "You need us, we're right here."

The officer ushered Kara away.  Ginny offered her a reassuring smile as she passed.  " mind?"  she asked, handing Nasya off.  Bill stared at those doors, wanting to just bust through them and go make his son all better.  As if he could.  Ginny walked up to her father, placing a hand at his back.

Bill put on a brave face for her, offering a weak smile.  She hugged his arm to her, resting her head on his shoulder.  "He'll be okay."  She wasn't sure who she was trying to convince, him or herself.  

"It's just not fair."  Bill muttered.  He felt like he'd JUST gotten him back and he'd almost lost him again.  Bill looked to his wife, sitting with their granddaughter.  Rose forced a smile for his benefit.  How she managed to stay calm in a crisis the way she did was beyond him.  She just sat there humming to the baby, rocking her gently in her arms.

Rose Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #25 on: May 10, 2016, 01:45:32 AM »
Rose stepped into the hospital room where Gerry was resting.  They were keeping him under for a little bit, letting him rest.  The doctor said they were still waiting on the CT results, but the outlook was hopeful.  Bill was discussing things with the doctor and Ginny went with Nasya and Kara to get some food.  But, Rose wanted a moment with just her and her son.  

He lay there, hooked up to that heart monitor, his head bandaged up, and his handsome face scratched and bruised.  His chest rising and falling evenly beneath that hospital gown.  It felt like someone had reached into her chest and squeezed her heart.  A sad little noise escaped the older woman as she saw him, moving quickly to his side and clutching his hand.  Her face screwed up in an agony as she stood by his bedside, bringing his hand to her lips while the tears began to fall.  She let herself feel it, let it crush her for a few moments before she gasped in the midst of a sob and looked down at him.  

"My boy..."She whispered, leaning down and touching his face carefully.  "My beautiful boy."  Her breath caught in her throat.  "Please.  Please don't go.  Don't leave me.  Not again."  she pleaded with her slumbering son clutching his hand for dear life.

Behind her, the door opened, Bill peeking in.  She glanced back to him, looking like she might shatter at any moment.  Bill's shoulders slumped when he saw Gerry.  "Oh...God..."  He said in a pained tone, stepping up beside Rose.  She looked up at him with that worried expression.  She watched him place a hand on Gerry's forearm.

Rose stared at his hand, a smile coming to her face.  A small laugh escaped her and she looked up to her husband.  "You remember when he was so small he could fit right there?"  She asked.

One corner of Bill's mouth upturned in that lopsided grin that Gerry had inherited.  "God...yeah."  Bill said wistfully.  "That was here, wasn't it?"

Rose nodded.  "Right down the hall."    She glanced down to Gerry, her smile fading.  Such a long time ago.  So much had happened since then.  "I can't lose him, Bill."  She looked to her husband again.  "Not again."

Bill put an arm around her shoulder and pulled her close, Rose's eyes clamping shut as she leaned her cheek against his shoulder.  Bill turned his neck and planted a kiss on her forehead.  "He's not.  He's right here.  And he'll be better in no time.  You'll see."

One hand remained, holding Gerry's hand, the other held tight to her husband.  "I love you, Bill."

"To the moon and back."  He whispered to her.  Rose shut her eyes and clung to the two men in the world who meant most to her.

Ginny Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #26 on: May 11, 2016, 03:10:13 PM »
The Red haired girl sat in the hospital room with her brother.  He was still out, as he had been for the past few hours.  She decided to sit up with him in the dimly lit room, the TV practically white noise to her.  She just wanted him to get up and be okay again.  But that wasn't to be.  The doctors said that boot to the head had done more damage that he thought.  A small fracture to his skull that could have caused some minor brain trauma.  They would have to see what symptoms presented themselves once he woke up and then they would discuss treatment possibilities.  

All Ginny heard was "He may have some brain damage."  Normally, she'd have made a joke there.  But now, in the reality of it, it wasn't quite so funny.  It terrified her.  When he woke up, would he even be him?  She didn't think she could handle that.  After everything she'd done to get him back into their lives, everything she'd sacrificed, and this was how it turned out?  Like her father had said, it just wasn't fair.

She turned those big, bright blue eyes on her brother, just watching him in silence.

"You know..." she said quietly.  "When I first met you at that bar in Rhydin...I though you were a foul-mouthed, obnoxious brute.  And when I found out who you are, I felt...I felt like I had made a mistake in looking for you."  

Ginny leaned forward, her forearms resting on her knees.  "Like...I had wasted the past 19 years and threw away everything for someone who wasn't worth it."  Her head hung low for a moment, swallowing hard.

"Then...I got to know you."  She smiled to herself and returned her gaze to Gerry.  "You are...the kindest...most patient...most loving man I have ever met."  

Ginny chewed on her lip a little, her eyes watering.  She blinked and continued.  "You're an amazing father.  A great son.  And you're such a good brother.  I wish we could make up for lost time.  And...and everything that happened, through it all you've stayed THAT guy.  I am so, so proud of you."  She said touching her brother's hand.  "Please.  Please be okay?  Please be you?  I...I don't think I can handle it if you wake up and that son of a bitch has taken anything from you.  I don't know what I'll do."  

She squeezed his hand and sniffed.  "I'll probably have to run him down with my car and you know that thing will probably fall apart..."  She chuckled softly.  " gotta wake up and be okay.  Alright?  Just please...for me.  For Nasya.  For Mom and Dad...for Kara.  We need you."  

Ginny leaned her head on his arm and tried to distract herself with the TV a shuddering sigh leaving the tired redhead as she waited for her brother to wake up

Kara Aimsley

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #27 on: May 12, 2016, 08:01:00 PM »
Kara sat up in the hospital room all night, curled up a chair and staring out the window, just listening to him breathe and the heart monitor beep.  Occasionally, she would glance over just in case.  But still, he remained asleep.  The sun was rising outside the window, Kara's head resting against the glass, her eyelids feeling impossibly heavy now.  

A sudden gasp brought her right back, her head quickly turning to Gerry.  His eyes popped open, a look of confusion settling in.  Kara's heart leapt up into her throat.  She sprung out of her chair and moved to his side. "Oh, my god, Gerry!"  She leaned over him, grabbing his hand.  "Are you okay?"

His face contorted in pain as he took a deep breath in, the pain from his injuries suddenly becoming a reality.  "Oh...jeeeesus...." He winced, gritting his teeth.  He let out a shuddering breath and reached up and touched the bandage at his head, a worried look on his face.   Finally, he spoke in a weak, hoarse voice.   "What...what happened?"

Kara offered a comforting smile.  "You're in the hospital.  You've been here since all night."

He let out a weak little laugh.  ""  He looked confused a moment.  "No..."  He shut his eyes...trying to find the words he wanted to say.

Kara smiled to him.  "You trying to say 'No ****, Sherlock?'"  She asked him.

A little grin crossed his lips at that and he nodded.  "What happened?"

Kara chewed on her bottom lip a moment before speaking.  "The, uh...the doctors said you had a fracture in your skull.  They said-"

Gerry shut his eyes, frustrated and waved her off.  ""  He held up his hand.  For a long moment, he tried to form the words he wanted to ask.  "How?"

It slowly dawned on Kara as she stared at him, and it for just a moment, it filled her with terror.  " don't remember what happened?"   She asked him in a quiet voice.

Gerry's head lowered as he tried for a moment.  A frustrated look was followed by shake of his head.

She swallowed her grief hard, and pushed on.  "You saved me."  She said with a sad smile.   "Tim came to hurt us and...and you fought him off.

Confusion covered his face, but he still grinned.  "Didn't...didn' so good."

"I might have shot him."  She nodded.

He looked up to her with wide eyes and winced as he breathed out a laugh.  "Didn'"  God, he looked so frustrated with himself.  

"Kill him?  No.  One to the shoulder, in and out.  I wanted to...but no."  She reassured him.   "Listen.  Just rest.  I'm gonna go get the doctor, okay?  You stay here."

Gerry nodded.  "Won't...go far."

She forced a smile for him, and kissed his cheek.  The second the door closed behind her she felt like her breath left her body and just sobbed.  How badly had Tim hurt him?  He couldn't form sentences, he couldn't remember any of the attack...What had he done to Gerry?  She just hugged herself and rocked against the wall, her body shaking as she cried.

Gerard Finnegan

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #28 on: May 16, 2016, 07:23:40 PM »
Gerry sat up in bed, surrounded by family, everyone thoroughly relieved that he was up and at least smiling.  Conversation was rough going, but they were managing.  They had him on some painkillers that were just...just so great.  He didn't feel like he was going to pass out, just like he was living on a happy little cloud.  Kara sat in the corner, looking every bit as exhausted as she should given her evening.  Ginny sat beside her, a smile on her face a mile wide.  Nasya was tucked under his arm on his good side, snoozing away.  

Rose was fussing like crazy.  "Are you comfortable?  Do you need another pillow, sweetie?"  She asked him.  Gerry smiled weakly to her.  "No...f...f...fourty ffffffive is my...uh..."  He shut his eyes, thinking.  "Limit."  

Ugh.  Jokes were hard now.  Rose smiled at him and shook her head.  "Alright, alright, I'll get off your case, smart guy.  But if you need anything, you let me know."  Gerry could tell seeing him like this was breaking her heart, but damned if he didn't appreciate her making a go at hiding it.  

Nasya stirred in his arm and he glanced down to her with a smile.  "Hey....hey you..." He said softly as those big, impossibly blue eyes opened.  The raven haired baby smiled up at him.  He'd dreamed of her while he was out.  It had kept him going.

In the dream, she was a teenager, coming down the stairs of their house while Gerry sat at the kitchen table.  

"Hey, Dad."  She'd said, sneaking up behind him and hugging him.  Gerry smiled and clutched her arm.  

"How you doin', precious face?"  He greeted his daughter.  

"Last day!"  She said excitedly.

"D' little graduate.  Going off to college and leaving me here all by myself.  Not fair, Kiddo."  Gerry glanced back at her with a smirk.

"Aww, dry your eyes, old man.  Now you can go tear it up on the mean streets of Clute again!"  

Gerry laughed.  "Oh yeah.  That's me.  'Tearing it up'."

Nasya smirked at him.  She had SO much of her mother in her.  Sometimes the only thing he thought she had from him was some of his height.  The girl rested her chin on his shoulder.  "You're gonna be fine, you know that, right?"

Gerry felt warm inside and just smiled.  "Yeah.  Yeah I know."  His gaze shifted back at her.  "I'm proud of you kid.  You're so smart, you're so good...You've always made so proud of you."

"Yeah?"  she said in a mischievous tone.  "Well, keep that in mind, because I'll be bringing home some tatted up biker with nose gauges and subdermal horn implants."

Well, there went his smile.  "You're disowned."

Nasya belly laughed and gave him a squeeze.  They just sat there a moment, her hugging him in his chair from behind.  "You gotta wake up."  she'd said.

"I do?"  He asked her.

"You know it's not real.  None of this."  She said.

"I don't want to."  He'd whispered in response.  "I want to stay here.  Stay in this."

"It's a dream, Dad.  You have to wake up the world is out there."

Gerry looked worried, unsettled.  "I'm afraid." he said in a shaky voice.

"Me too."  Nasya responded.  "But I'm out there.  Waiting.  And you have to make me become me.  Without you, Dad...I don't know what I'll be."   She kissed his cheek, and squeezed him tight again.  "Come on, old man.  Wake up."

That was when he'd woken up to find Kara watching him.  Now he was back, and the world wasn't quite as warm and idyllic as in the dream.  But the outpouring of love from his family was doing a helluva job keeping him happy.  None more so than the little bundle wriggling in his arms.  The girl in the dream waited for him in this tiny beautiful child smiling up at him.  And in that moment, he vowed to himself that he'd do anything to one day see that girl again.
[i:df9d511a7f]To these memories I will hold
With your blessing I will go
To turn at last to paths that lead home[/i:df9d511a7f]


Kara Aimsley

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Re: Chapter 1: Life On The Other Side (18+)
« Reply #29 on: May 17, 2016, 02:08:28 AM »
Kara had pulled a chair next to Gerry's hospital bed and the two of them sat watching Spaceballs on a laptop she'd brought in.  Gerry had gotten the staff to bring the pair of them a couple bowls of ice cream.  

On-screen, Rick Moranis as Dark Helmet stood wearing a comically over-sized pith helmet version of his mask while his men ran giant Ace combs.  His subordinate, Colonel Sandurz turned to him.  "Sir?"

Dark Helmet turned to him with a megaphone.  "WHAT?!"

Sandurz jumps, startled before continuing.  "Are we being too literal?"

Still speaking into the megaphone, Dark Helmet answered, "No, you fool!  We were told to comb the desert, so we're combing it!"  Sandurz nods reluctantly as Helmet calls to his men...without the use of the megaphone.  "FOUND ANYTHING YET?!"

Two men, both white look up from their giant comb.  "Nothing yet, Sir!"

"How 'bout you?!"

Two other white men look up, "Not a thing, sir!"

The camera pans over to two black troopers using an afro pick.  "What about you guys?!"

One of the men looked up angrily and shouted, "WE AIN'T FOUND s***!"

Gerry winced as the two of them laughed.  Gerry had just finished his ice cream and set his bowl aside.  The wounded father glanced over while Kara was busy, still chuckling.  He reached over with his little plastic spoon and scooped up some of her ice cream.  Kara pulled her bowl away protectively, laughing.  "Nooooo!  Mine!"

"But...but I'm...I'm...hurt!"  he said pleadingly, popping the spoon into his mouth.

"Yeah, duh!  I'm taking advantage of it to GET this free ice cream."

"Knew it."  He grinned to her.

Kara smirked at him and then offered him the bowl.  Gerry held up a hand and shook his head, passing on it.  She kicked her feet back up and went back to watching.

Try as he might, Gerry just wasn't able to remember much from the day of the accident.  It came in flashes here and there, but nothing from the attack.  Kara had laid out the basics for him.  The fight, how Gerry had defended her, the beating.  Part of him was glad he couldn't remember.  If only his memory was the only thing he'd lost.  He turned his eyes to Kara.  "What happened"  He squeezed his eyes shut.  He could see the name, hear it, but for some reason, it just wouldn't reach his lips.

"Tim?"  She asked with a frown.


She set aside her empty bowl and brushed her hair behind her ear.  "He'"

Even under his bandages, she could see his brow furrowed.  Her small hand touched his forearm.  "He's in protective custody until the hospital releases him to the cops."

"Then what?"  Gerry asked.

"Then, I'm going to do anything and everything within my power to put his ass away for a long time."  She said.

"Didn't get you in trouble?"  He managed.  

Kara shook her head.  "No.  He was about to murder you.  Plus, it's not like any jury would buy anything he has to say.  He's got a warrant out in Dallas, a record as long as my leg...Basically, they said I could have KILLED him and walked on self defense.  Son of a bitch is lucky I just shot him in the shoulder."

Gerry nodded at that, considering.  "Good.  That's good."  For a long moment, the two of them just watched their movie.  Gerry's mind was elsewhere though.  " don't have know?"

She looked over at him.  "You want me to go?"

"No."  He said firmly.  "No.  But..."

"Gerry.  I'm right where I wanna be."

Kara adjusted herself in her seat and leaned he head against his arm, taking his hand, their fingers intertwining.