Chapter 11

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Over the last month there has been a ton of changes; good changes. Eric slowly started moving his things into my house. It’s been fun living with him so far. I love that I have someone to share my life with, someone that I met in a very unconventional place. Today is his first day back at work so not having him overnight is going to be strange, but I’ll have to get used to it. I’m choosing to spend my life with a firefighter, it comes with the territory.

Speaking of firefighters. Jessica and Godric have been on two dates now from what she said. We haven’t had a chance to talk about it yet, but today is pedicure day so I’m sitting in a massage chair with my fellow teacher sitting in the one next to me.

“So, spill,” I finally say. She just got settled after picking her color.

“About what?” she asks coyly.

“You know what. About your dates with Godric,” I press. She has no idea where Eric and I met. One day I was single and the next Eric and I were an item.

“They’ve been good. I wouldn’t say it’s love at first sight or anything, but I like him enough to keep seeing him.”

“That’s good. What kinda stuff do you guys do?” Eric and I mostly have sex. “Did he try to kiss you on the first date?” Yeah, I’m an old nosey mother already. I don’t even know if Jessica is the type to kiss on the first ten dates. Hell, as innocent as she seems I wouldn’t be surprised to find out she’s a virgin.

“He did.” Her blush is epic.

“Aww, was it any good?” I whisper.

“A lady doesn’t talk about that kind of thing,” she says, but the way her blush deepens I’m guessing it was excellent.

I snort and say, “You’d probably burst into a ball of flames if I told you some of the things I talk about.” From what I know about Godric he’s doing things right with her. I’ve only met him a couple times, but Eric says very nice things about him.

“I’m sure I would,” she smiles. “He’s a very nice man. Polite and he doesn’t mind that I’m… old fashioned.”

She is a virgin.

“That’s good. There’s nothing worse than a pushy man that thinks he’s going to be the one to talk you into throwing away all your morals and beliefs.” I didn’t have sex until I was twenty. I completely understand. I also know Jessica is a couple years younger than me.

“It’s why I’ve stayed single for so long,” she sighs. “Ironic, right?”

“I’m just happy you still put yourself out there. I was a shut in for a long time. I’d just put myself on the market again when I met Eric.” Technically, I wasn’t exactly on the market, but I wasn’t opposed to a relationship. I had a really bad relationship with a dickweed named Bill Compton that turned me off for about three years. I was getting tired of my vibrator so Pam, and subsequently Eric, came along at the perfect time.

“We’re going out again tomorrow,” she smiles. “He has tickets for Blake Shelton over in Dallas.”

“I bet that’s going to be a blast,” I smile. “Is it weird that in the two and a half months that Eric and I have been dating we’ve become homebodies? He’s been working on his house so when I get off work I usually go see him.”

“I don’t think so. As long as it’s what’s comfortable for you, who cares what other people think?”

“Thanks,” I smile. “Halleigh thinks we’re moving too fast. I know it seems fast, but I’ve known him almost a year. Moving in together isn’t that big of a deal. I trust him, I’ve met his mother. It’s right for us.”

“That’s good. It’s good to see you so happy,” she says. “You deserve it.”

“Thanks. You do too. I really hope this thing with Godric works out. It would be nice to go on double dates and stuff,” I chuckle. “From what Eric’s said, Godric really likes you.”

There goes that big smile again.

“I really like him too. We’re so different in a lot of ways, but I guess we’re the same enough that it works somehow. I’ll try to work on him with those double dates,” she promises. “I’m worried about taking him to meet my parents but I know we’re not at that point yet.”

Her dad is a douchebag– a bible thumping douchebag.

“He’ll make a good impression. He has manners and he has a good, noble job serving the community. I wouldn’t worry too much about that.”

“He has all those tattoos though. Daddy hates tattoos,” she says.

“Hmm, hopefully he can see past the tattoos to the sweet man underneath them.” I doubt it’s going to happen, but wishful thinking is never a bad thing.

“I doubt it,” she says. “But it doesn’t matter. I’m a grown up woman now. I pay my own bills, live in my own home and there’s nothing he can say about the way I live my life. If he doesn’t like Godric he can… well he can just go fuck himself.”

My drink pauses on its way to my mouth when the F word comes out of her mouth.

“Why yes he can,” I say with an odd chuckle. That was a very strange thing to hear from her. I almost feel like that’s the first time she said fuck. “I’m happy to hear you say that. I’m proud of you.”

“I love my father but he doesn’t get to make my life for me,” she says with conviction. “It’s not up to him to judge; that’s God’s work. Daddy would do better to remember that if he has intentions of gettin’ into heaven after he goes Home.”

“He certainly didn’t raise a fool,” I smile. I pick up my phone to see if Eric’s texted me. Contrary to what he believes, we are one of the sickeningly sweet couples that talk all day and kiss more than any two people should. It doesn’t matter though. We’re happy and that’s all that matters. I don’t have a message so I put my phone down. This is me time; I need to think about me and my lady date with Jess. “Is it sad that I want Eric to be at home when I get there? This is going to be my first night without him in a month.”

“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that at all. I’m sure it’s nice having someone to snuggle up with at night,” she says with a little smile.

“It is. It’s nice to have someone that wants to snuggle back. He’s so sweet, Jess. He’ll just stop me in the middle of whatever I’m doing to tell me how pretty I look or to let me know how happy he is to have me. From what I gather his dad was the same way and Eric really looked up to him.”

“Awww that’s sweet,” she says sincerely. “It’s nice to hear there’s still a guy or two out there who isn’t afraid of being nice or sweet to a girl.”

“I know, right?” I smile. “I had no idea how sweet he was until our first date. Before that we met at a club and continued to meet up a couple times a week. He told me he spent all of his free time from the firehouse with me.”

“That’s sweet, too. Is this… I mean, you’re living together so it must be pretty serious, but is this as serious as it gets for you guys?”

“We both want to get married and have kids one day. I know if he asked I’d say yes in a heartbeat. We both know it would be crazy to get engaged this soon,” I explain. I would walk down the aisle with him today if he had an appointment with the justice of the peace.

“But you think about it,” she says knowingly. “I bet you even get a little starry-eyed when you pass the bridal magazines in the Grab-It-Kwik.”

“I do.” It’s my turn to blush. “I want everything with him. I can see our kids, ya know?”

“That’s good. Does he want that stuff too?”

“As far as I know,” I smile. “I don’t know if it’s going to happen anytime soon, but that’s my ultimate goal and he knows it.”

“As long as y’all are on the same page, I think that’s great,” she says sincerely. “I’m happy for ya, Sookie.”

“Thanks. Now we just need you and Godric to fall madly in love and we can have a double wedding,” I joke.

“Oh gosh, no, you don’t want that,” she says. “I’m thinking of eloping myself when the time comes.”

“I honestly have no reason for a big wedding. My only family is Jason, and he could stand in the courthouse with me. If we have a big wedding it’ll be on his mom’s prompting.”

“You know, Godric doesn’t really have any family either,” she says quietly, like it’s a secret. “His dad took off before he was born and his birth mom gave him up for adoption when he was born. He was in foster care for most of his childhood, but there was this firefighter who stopped some jerks from picking on him once. The guy ended up adopting him a year later.”

“That’s one of the sweetest things I’ve ever heard,” I smile. “He’s an awesome guy. You two would have adorable little babies too.”

“I’m a little uneasy with the firefighter part. I mean I applaud what he does but it’s scary, you know? Don’t you worry about Eric?”

“Constantly,” I tell her. “I try not to think about what could go wrong. I choose to believe he’s going to come home to me every thirty-six hours. I cherish the time we have.”

“Good point,” Jessica nods.

“We had a talk about it. If it ever starts to be too much I can always call his mom to get advice,” I say. I’m sure Audrey is going to be a wealth of knowledge if and when the time comes.

“Would Eric give it up if you couldn’t handle it anymore?”

“I don’t know,” I admit. “The thought hasn’t even crossed my mind. I know it fulfills him and I wouldn’t feel right asking him to quit. I’ll find out though.”

“It’s important to know. If you have kids your feelings about his job might change,” she shrugs.

“True. We’ll have to talk about that next time I see him.” Before Jessica can respond my phone rings. I don’t recognize the number, but I answer anyway. “Hello?”

“Sookie? It’s Audrey.”

Oh, I guess Eric gave her my number.

“Hi, Audrey, to what do I owe the pleasure?” I ask sweetly.

“Eric was hurt on a call. He’s at the parish hospital,” she tells me.

My whole body goes numb. I can’t even respond to her. He what? No… no… This isn’t happening.

“Wh… what?” I whisper.

“I’m not sure what happened, but he had to be pulled out by rescue squad. He’s unconscious…”

I yank my foot back from the lady working on my pedicure. “Do you know what room?” I start to unroll my pant legs. The polish hasn’t gone on my toes yet.

“Right now he’s in the emergency room. We’re waiting for CT results.”

“I’ll be there as soon as I can,” I tell her. Jessica is giving me a concerned look.

“We’ll be waiting.”

I hang up without saying bye.

“I have to go,” I tell Jess and the nail lady. “Eric was hurt…” I’m not crying… yet.

Jess gasps. “Oh honey, I’m so sorry. Is he okay?”

“He’s unconscious. That’s all I know.” I can feel the tears starting to sting my eyes. I don’t know what I’m going to do if I lose him.

“Keep me updated. I can come keep you company if you need me,” she offers.

I nod as I gather my things. I’ll come back later to pay the lady for my half pedicure. I’ve been here enough that she knows I’m good for it. I head out to my SUV. When I get in I start up and head straight for the hospital. I’m numb. This can’t be happening… No, we just met. If I lose Eric… no, I’m not going down that road. He’s going to be fine. At least that’s what I’m telling myself.

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9 thoughts on “Chapter 11

  1. Yikes! I’ve been waiting for that shoe to drop, what an awful thing to happen. I think it would take an incredibly strong person to be romantically involved with a firefighter, police officer, anyone who puts their life on the line each day for the safety of others.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Hmmm, it’s Hollywood; they’re talking about the risks of being a firefighter and there goes real life. It had to happen. 🙂 Nicely worded bridging chapter.

    Like

  3. Wow, how quickly things change😟 Sookie and Jessica were having a nice time getting pedicures and having some girl talk, then Sookie gets the call everyone dreads. I hope Eric will be ok.😇

    Like

  4. Sigh, I knew it would happen at some point but I still didn’t expect it to happen on his first shift after starting to move in with her…
    Please let him be ok, and not leave us hanging for too long before we find out how bad things are.

    Like

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