"This is going to be one big mess!" Nicole slammed her hands against the steering wheel tempted to pound her forehead against it.
"Uncle cwistopher?" Quinn was on a roll, and she was damn sure that was why she had heard Christophers laugh as he had left. She would have laughed if she hadn't had to panic. Her innocent little boy was doing absolutly nothing to help her sanity.
"We are going to return these and get them the hell out of dodge.". She checked her rearview mirror no sign of the silver mercedes as of yet, but he was definatly getting closer. She pulled into the parking lot of the country inn noting the cluster of cars right outside of the room Kayla had indicated on her note. Parking she went around to the back eyeing the door to the room as it opened Sarah standing there arms crossed across her chest as she watched.
Unbuckling Quinn from his car seat she grabbed the stack on enevlopes and headed up the stairs. Skipping onto the last one she put Quinn down letting him walk the last few steps himself. Sarah knelt down meeting his eye level.
"Hi Quinn," the little boy eyed her with a similar look Nicole used chin tilted to the side examining her. "Would you like to come in? "
He nodded and then looked back over his shoulder. "Coming mommy?"
"Yes I'm comming baby." She readjusted her shirt. "We arnt staying long though bubba."
"Why not?" Jonathan asked opening the door wider. "Other plans?"
"I wanted to return these," she held up the envelopes "and also explain a little misunderstanding from earlier about what Quinn said when Christopher came by. "
"The whole uncle christopher thing?" Heather laughed from the small kitchenette. "Was pretty cute tho, you talked the same way when you were littlen thankfully you grew out of it."
"Want to sit down?" Matthew asked readjusting his t-shirt.
"Ok I am sorry, there seems to be a misunderstanding here." Nicole sighed brushing her hair back. Damn it why wouldn't they just take this and go? Because they have been searching for you they have no idea WHY you stayed. She chidded herself. And she was not going to explain it to them. "I just came to return and clarify no long uncomfortable talks, trying to make me remeber shit. "
"Its up to you." Heather sighed putting the pot on the counter to cool. Damn it all she had made chicken dumplings.
"Hey at least let little man have a snack while we talk." Ryan said softly coming out of one of the side bedrooms closing his phone.
It may well be the only time he gets to try your sisters dumplings, she reminded herself and nodded. "Want to try something really yummy?" Ryan grinned picking up Quinn and plopping him down in a chair while heather loaded up a plate.
"Should we talk in here?" Kayla asked, fidgiting in her sweats.
"Sure." Nicole sat down so she had a line of sight on Quinn. "What did you folks want to talk about?"
"Did you read any of them? " Christopher asked eyeing the stack, a few of the flaps where open.
"I did." She started, "but nothing clicked I'm sorry." She was lying. She had bawled when she had read them.
Nic where are you? Is everything ok? No one has heard from you in weeks.... One from Ryan had said.
You have been declared missing 1 year 5 months and 21 days, I'm still writing in hopes you'll be home and these will guilt trip you into never disapearing again... Joshuas letter from Iraq, he had been the most teasing, a pathetic cover for his panic and worry.
She had managed to wipe away the signs of tears from her eyes thank goodness for makeup and cold spoons. "I am really truly sorry for the friend, sister or lover you lost but I need to ask you to leave and stop trying to make me into her. Its been 3 years, why are you even still looking for her?"
Brandons eyebrow quirked."We want to find out if she is dead or alive, we care about her very much." He exmanied her reactions guaging what he said. "Wouldn't you look everywhere if your son dissapeared?"
Nicole sucked in her breath looking at every face in the group, she had to keep lying, her eyes fell on the little boy who was enjoying his aunts dumplings. She could break down tell them everything, but then she would risk their safety, Quinns safety just to be selfish. Out of everything when she said she needed them to leave, that was going to be it. They had to leave to survive.
Looking at Ryan she raised an eyebrow as he was watching Quinn eat. It really was obvious who Quinns father was, to bad he was never going to get to enjoy raising him. Maybe....
"This may seem like a random question," she looked directly at Ryan, "where you and your Nicole," she blushed a little "intimate? "
"Classy way of putting it but yes we were, " he smirked a little eyeing her up and down, she recognized the come hither look in his eyes. She felt her body tempurature spike, damn it. "How convinced are you that I am this missing woman?"
"On a scale from 1 to 5?" Joshua asked with a laugh."5."
"Would you take a paternity test?" She eyed Ryan.
Michale slammed down the phone, ignoring the thunk as it fell onto the floor. The dial tone buzzed as it fell off its hook. She was not listening to a damn thing, they were still there! He rubbed his head brushing back the newly dyed black mop of hair, he’d gone through more dye in the past 2 years then the girls had done in their entire high school careers.
Closing his eyes he leaned back against the sterile hospital like bedding of the hotel. Nothing had gone right since he had let her get that addition to her tattoo,
He had just gotten home from a deal, a pretty big on for his position and he’d felt the need to celebrate with his woman and child.
He heard the door slam as she got home, but instead of coming into the kitchen she had stormed up the stairs, he wondered if that artist had screwed up the design. Starting up after her he saw the bedroom door open and a suite case lying open on the bed. Pushing the door open the rest of the way he spoke up as she came out of the closet arms full of clothes. “Where are you going darlin?”
“I’m going to find Ryan.” She spat dropping the pile in the suitecase. “I’m taking Quinn to meet his father.”
“I’m his father,” he shook his head, she had remembered, or at least started to.”Who is Ryan hunny?”
“Shut the hell up Michale.” She hissed meeting his eyes, the old look was back, after they had sent him to juvinille, the utter dissapointment and loss.
“Do not disrespect me!” He reached over grabbing her arm and hauling her into his chest. “Not in our home.”
“Well soon it will just be your home you arrogant prick!” She spat shoving him away from her, “I remebered everything.”
“And what exactly is it you think you remember?” he was a low lying son of a bitch, and if manipulation kept her with him, where he knew she belonged he would do it.
“I know you followed me,” she laughed bitterly, “You dont think the cops didnt let me know you had been released? That i didnt recognize you? Even after you changed your hair, and your appreance, that stupid truck, did you think hitting me would bring me back to you or where you really just trying to KILL me?”
He really had no idea what he had been doing when he’d hit her, he thought he had lost her and had hit the gas to try ad catch up on the back country roads. It had been an accident, or so he had convinced himself as he watched her in the hospital, it had been a blessing in disguies when she had lost her memory.
His chance to prove himself as the man he could be for her. It was fading fast in his peripheral. “I would never do anything to hurt you.” He said desperatly grabbing for the suite case she was packing.
“Bull shit.” She yelled, “You dont think i know what you have been doing these past months? What you have been doing around MY son? You have never put our safety first! I am going home!”
She slammed the suite case closed and headed to Quinns room grabbing suit cases and toys to shove into bags. “You bitch!” he yelled following her down the hall slamming the door behind him.
“Exscuse me?” She turned around and glared, “I’m a bitch? YOU lied to me these 10 months, and brought drugs into my home! I am not a bitch I’m just blond for not having done something about you earlier! I’m going back to the people who are my family you jack ass!”
“No you are not!” He yelled, slamming the babies room door behind him trapping them in the small room. “You are not going ANYWHERE!” he grabbed her arms shoving her into the wall, “You are both staying right here, with me!”
“Get off me!” she shouted clawing at his hands. “Your hurting me Michale!”
“You are staying here!” He shook her, her head conked against the wall. “With me!”
“Get the hell off of me!” She hissed, reaching for his wrists digging her nails into his skin.
“Not until you say you will stay with me!” He pushed her into the wall again knocking a picture frame off the wall.
“Never you pompus ass!” She spat meeting his eyes, the cold anger in her eyes flipped the switch in his head. He pulled back his hand smashing it across her face, the sting burned his hand.
“You are staying here!” He snapped letting her fall to the floor. “Do not even think about calling the cops much less Ryan or Heather, or I will make you watch as i kill Quinn,” He watched maiciously as the blood drained from her face.
“You wouldnt, you wanted to raise him....” she trailed off tears welling up in her eyes, her hands tightened around the baby blanket she had dropped.
“I will, if you go back to them.” He growled. “And if they find you and you tell them anything, you will get to enjoy watching them die as well. Do i make myself clear?”
The pride he took in watching her fall apart that night had been nothing short of glorious, he had acquiested to her request to leave, it had been a better move for his business anyways but it was still nice to know she was home waiting for him to return every week.
He curled up under the white sheets, he would see her soon, hold Quinn, he was probably going to be able to call him daddy this trip. If they were still there he would take care of it. He smiled, sliding into dreams of his home.