I’d spent the day contemplating how to tell Brody – my baby’s father – what I was thinking, and where things stood with my fiancé, Jaxon. Yeah, my MC VP and I had a lot of outstanding issues, but it had come time to make a decision. Brody kissing me the night before did nothing to give me clarity. I had been doing a decent job of organizing my discussion strategy when the damned song came on and sent me into a tailspin.
When I was not a blubbering mess, I had spent the afternoon in the kitchen making dinner. By the time Brody came home, I’d pulled myself together – mostly.
He stood before me probably thinking my hormones got the better of me - once again - when he asked, “What’s up Lei? We could’ve gone to dinner. You really didn’t have to cook… but thank you,” he walked over and kissed the top of my head. “How was your day?”
“Uh, fine, I guess.” I smiled half-heartedly, lost in my own head.
“Well, it looks delicious.”
We ate mostly in silence as I screwed up my courage to say what needed saying. “We need to talk, Brody,” I looked down so I wouldn’t have to meet his eyes. The fork he was holding made a loud clank as he dropped it to the plate.
“Yeah, we do,” he sighed. “Listen, I know things are complicated and I’m making them worse. I wish, for your sake, I could tell you that I was drunk last night and that I didn’t mean to kiss you… I guess I had hoped it would be the beginning of us getting back together.”
Just as I opened my mouth to respond my cell started ringing. My BFF Barb. I hit ignore.
Brody raised an eyebrow.
“Barb.” I waved my hand in the air. “I’ll call her back later.” Then placed the phone on the table. “So last night-”
My cell started ringing again. I glanced over, “Huh. Barb again.”
“Answer it. Maybe something’s wrong,”
“Hey Barb, I’m with Brody. Can I call you in a little-”
“Leila, honey, where are you?” she sounded frantic.
“I’m at Brody’s. What’s wrong?” Suddenly, I had an awful feeling in the pit of my stomach.
“I need you to come to the ER now. Can you get Brody to drive you?”
“What the hell’s going on?” My eyes widened as fear tore through my chest and crept up my throat.
“I’ll explain when you get here.” Barb stalled. “I don’t want you freaking out on the way. It’s not good for the baby.”
“No way. What in the hell is going on? I’m not moving until you tell me what’s wrong. What happened?” Full blown panic had set in. Worst case scenarios ran through my head in rapid fire succession.
Brody grabbed the phone out of my hand. “Barb, its Brody. What is going on? Leila is white as a sheet.”
I tried to grab the phone back, but he stood and began pacing the room. Hearing nothing but watching his face turn into a mask of stone, I felt the blood drain from my head.
“Fuck. Okay, we're on our way,” he hung up, stopped in front of me, crouched down on one knee, but looked down at the hardwood floor. Finally, he lifted his eyes to mine.
“What’s wrong?” The words were half stuck in my throat.
He clasped my hands between his. “I’ll explain on the way. You need to grab your purse and use the bathroom. Just please try and stay calm, okay?”
“Just tell me,” I whispered. I knew someone I loved was dead.
He stood and walked to the doorway. “We’re wasting time. Go to the bathroom, I’ll grab your purse and my phone and I’ll meet you in the garage.”
Typical Brody, he walked away not giving me a whole lot of choice but to do as he directed. When I met him in the garage, he had already started the Viper, and had the garage door opened. Without a word, he helped me in the car and we took off.
“Start talking Brody,” I demanded. “You said you’d explain on the way.”
Staring straight ahead Brody finally spoke. “What I’m about to say is going to be hard to hear, baby. You need to stay calm and think about our daughter, okay?”
“Brody, please.” Tears pricked my eyes.
“Promise me. I need you to stay calm and be the ER nurse right now.” He glanced over as we pulled onto the main road.
“Okay, okay. I promise. Now what’s happened? Is it my brother?” I gripped the side of my seat.
“No. Drew is fine…,” he hesitated. “It’s Jaxon.”
For a moment I couldn’t process what I heard. “What? What happened? Why is he in the ER?”
“I don’t know anything more than there was an incident with the motorcycle gang-”
“Club,” I interrupted, correcting him.
“What?” He looked from the road to me for a split second.
“It’s a motorcycle club. Not a gang. They’re mostly military vets, Brody, not thugs.”