About: Kevin, Scotty, Robert, Jason
Rate: G (Sorry!)
Disclaimer: Not mine. I know.
Summary: What is it like to be a brother?
Kevin swings his briefcase on the couch and immediately disappears into the kitchen, knowing he’ll find Scotty there and that seeing Scotty will make him feel better. However, not even their loving kiss and soft touches can lift his spirit today.
“What’s wrong? More bad news from Kitty?” Scotty asks quietly.
“No. Kit is alright. As far as one can be ‘alright’ when one has cancer.”
“What is it then?”
“It’s none of my business.”
“That has never stopped you before.” Scotty teases and even Kevin can smile a bit.
“It’s just…” he starts, but then he changes his mind mid-sentence. “.. never mind.”
“I do mind, if it bothers you so much.”
“I don’t want to fight or argue.”
“I promise you, we won’t fight.” Scotty replies, brushing away one of Kevin’s curls.
“Jason is in some remote area in Malaysia...” Kevin quickly looks at Scotty to see how he reacts to the name of Jason.
“And….?” Is all the reaction Kevin gets.
“Robert doesn’t want Jason to know.” Kevin leans back against the back of the kitchen-chair.
“Why not?” Scotty asks after having waited a few seconds to see if Kevin would say more.
“Jason is very busy. Has a lot on his mind. Robert doesn’t want to add to that. Jason is too far away. There’s nothing he can do. It is pointless and needless to get Jason involved.”
“I get that Jason cannot do something… But Jason is Robert’s brother.”
“My thoughts exactly… I respect Robert’s choice as my brother-in-law’s opinion. As a communications director I have no obligations here. And Kitty is my sister, she is the most important factor for me here…
Jason is my ex. I’m happily married to someone else…” He gives Scotty a quick smile which Scotty replies to the same. “So I don’t owe Jason anything either. It’s none of my business, Robert’s choice, not Kitty’s concern, not my responsibility.”
“As a brother… If I were to find out that Sarah, Kitty, Tommy or Justin would keep it a secret from me that their partner is terribly sick, I’d be livid! And I happen to know that Jason loves his brother very much. He’ll be so hurt.”
“Maybe Robert will change his mind. He’s so used to dealing with things on his own…. Could be that contacting Jason was not the first thing on his mind… but now that you mentioned it…”
“Yeah, maybe.. but I don’t think so.”
In all honesty, Scotty doesn’t believe it either and as much as it bothers him to suggest it, he does it anyway.
“Why don’t you call Jason?”
“I promised Robert I wouldn’t… Besides, Jason, me, Malaysia, telephone… Bad memories.”
Scotty laughs quietly and even Kevin looks a bit more cheered up.
“I don’t know.” Kevin says. “I need to think about this…” He rubs his face, looking tired. “Do I still have time for a shower before dinner?”
“Yes. 10 minutes max though.” Scotty replies.
“Mr McCallister? … Message for you. Call back. To America. Urgent.” Jason looks up to the man handing him a piece of paper. He opens the message to see the name and surprised he asks:
“Are you sure?”
“Yes, the man ask you to call back. Had him spell name… Not good?” Jason smiles at the young Malaysian man who looks a bit insecure.
“No. The spelling is correct. I’m just surprised that he would call me. That’s all.” And the young man disappears again, satisfied that he didn’t make a mistake.
Jason dries off his sweaty forehead, this early in the day and he’s already soaking wet. He knows he has to go inside and get to the phone. He reads the name again. Call back. That familiar telephone number… He sighs, feeling this is too important to ignore. It is after all not every day that he gets an urgent call back request from Scotty Wandell.
“Scotty?... Hi, it’s Jason McCallister. I got a message to call you back?”
“Yes, that’s right… Thank you for actually calling back.”
“Is everything alright?... Something wrong with Kevin?”
“Yes. no. Not exactly. It has more to do with Robert.”
“Is Robert alright? Did he have another heart-attack?”
“No!! No. Robert is fine… but Kitty isn’t … She’s been diagnosed with lymphoma.”
“Cancer… We just found out these last few days and …” Scotty doesn’t know how to go on.
“Why hasn’t Robert contacted me? I’ve been here all along.”
“Robert told Kevin that he feels that there’s nothing you can do. And you’re far away…”
“He’s my brother!”
“That’s what Kevin thought too. Robert is too busy trying to keep control…”
“I know.” There’s a silence between them for a few seconds.
“Scotty, thanks for calling me and telling me… I need to think over my next step. Does Kevin know that you called me?”
“No. I wasn’t sure if your old number would still work and if I could get through to you. Or if you’d take my call.”
“Trust me. Knowing that you were looking for me, caught my attention.” Jason laughs.
“I hoped it might.” Scotty confesses.
“I have a few things to look into, a few options at my disposal, but… I don’t know yet.. I have to let this message sink in… Can I call you later on?”
“Yeah sure. I’ll be here all night.” Scotty replies, reminding Jason that it’s getting late in the evening in America.
Two days later Jason is back in LA. He watches the crowd for a familiar face and soon enough he sees one.
“Jason.” The welcome is warm and friendly.
“Thank you, Scotty, for taking the time to pick me up from the airport.”
“That’s alright…. I’ve checked Kevin’s agenda and he has a meeting with Robert alone this afternoon to discuss how to approach the topic of Kitty’s cancer in the media…”
“Oh, good… I plan to give Robert a good suggestion on how to discuss it with his brother.”
“Have you spoken to either Robert or Kitty?”
“No, not yet… I called Nora though, after you told me that they are in Nora’s house. She was surprised and shocked I didn’t know, but wouldn’t say a word to Robert just yet and Kitty was still asleep.”
“Listen, I don’t want trouble between myself and Robert or Kevin and Robert.” Scotty warns, suddenly feeling a bit worried.
“Don’t worry, neither of you will be in trouble… My brother though.. different story.” Jason replies a bit grumpy at first, but then he smiles as he gets into Scotty’s car.
“Senator McCallister? You have a visitor.” His secretary smiles at Robert.
“I don’t have anything planned…” Robert start, slightly annoyed. He hates it when people don’t make appointments.
“Oh, I’m sure you’ll want to see him.” She laughs and then Robert sees a familiar face.
“Bobby!” The hug between them is strong and maybe Jason holds Robert a bit longer than usual, but Robert doesn’t notice.
“When did you get back?”
“This morning.” Jason replies honestly.
“You should have told me….” Robert looks pleased to see him and Jason now turns to Kevin.
“Kevin, it’s good to see you again.” There’s a quick hug between them as well. “Kev, can I speak to my brother alone? I need a few minutes to yell at him.”
“I want to see that! Sure I can’t stay?” Kevin teases
“I’d rather do this without witnesses to the crime.” Jason grins and Kevin leaves the two McCallister-men alone.
“He called you, didn’t he?” Robert asks, a bit annoyed by Kevin’s presumed betrayal.
“No. He is just as surprised that I am here, as you are. He didn’t tell me.” Jason answers. “and that shouldn’t have been you concern or irritation. You should have been the one to tell me about Kitty’s cancer…. Why do you keep doing this to me? I’m not a kid anymore, Robert.”
“I know. But you were in Malaysia… There was nothing that you could do….”
“Do? Oh! And what exactly can you do about it? Nothing! Nothing else but be there for Kitty when she needs you. Why do you deny me the right to there for you and Kitty? You are my brother and you’re more important than anyone else. And even if I couldn’t come here immediately, I could have prayed, I could have called, I could have talked to Kitty, I could have… I don’t know…I would have known!”
Robert remains quiet while he looks at Jason. He cannot remember the last time he has seen Jason this angry.
“I’m sorry, Jase. I guess.. I just want to protect you. Keep this away from you. It’s all so ugly and ….”
“Don’t. Don’t ‘protect’ me. I don’t need that from you. I may have needed it when I was 10-years old, but not anymore. You know nothing about my life, but I’ve seen, heard and dealt with the worst, Robert. From children beaten half to death by their parents to giving last rites to people gurgling out their last breaths in their beds. So, please, don’t act like I will fall apart if I hear that my sister-in-law has cancer.”
“I’m sorry, I never meant to imply…” Robert raises his hands to calm down Jason, but Jason only shrugs and, still angry, says:
“Good. Glad you didn’t. Now. Talk.” He sits down on the couch in Robert’s office and motions Robert to join him there. (and he’s bit surprised when Robert actually obeys!)
“No. First I need to know who told you.”
“It wasn’t Kevin. Kevin respected your wish not to tell me.
“No. Not Kitty either. Let it rest, Robert. It’s irrelevant who told me… All you need to know now, is that I know.”
“That’s not good enough.”
“It will have to do however. Now talk to me.”
“What do you want me to tell you?”
“How’s Kitty at the moment?”
“Fine. Confident. Scared. Worried. Everything else in between.”
“How are you?”
“Good. I’m fine. After all I’m not the one who’s sick.” Robert answers.
Jason nods, recognizing the denial in his brother’s voice. He knows Robert well enough.
“You’re not ‘fine’.” Jason says calmly.
“Yes, I am.” Robert denies.
“No, you’re not.” Jason doesn’t take his eyes off of Robert and Robert gets very uncomfortable. He has no desire to discuss this with his brother, but somehow Jason seems larger than life. Unavoidable. Unrelenting. And Robert feels the heat going to his face. He bites his lip as he tries to control the hurricane of emotions in him.
Jason moves a bit closer and puts a hand in Robert’s neck.
“I’m here.” He says quietly.
“I can’t… I need….” Robert tries to move away from Jason, but Jason doesn’t let go.
“I’m right here.” He repeats, feeling the tension in Robert’s body.
He’s aware that now Robert is going to either break or get up, so he holds his breath as he, once again, reminds Robert:
“I’m nowhere else. Only here. With you. You and me. No one else.” That is when Robert’s defense comes down and all Jason can do is hold Robert close, while Robert sobs out his own fear.
Kevin places some documents on the receptionist’s desk and signs them, when, from the corner of his eye, he sees Robert’s door open.
“It was good to.. talk to you, Jase… See you tonight?”
“If I’m not asleep already, I feel completely jet-lagged.”
Kevin approaches Robert and Jason.
“Everything alright?” he asks.
“Yeah, fine.” Robert answers. “Jason needs some sleep. I’ve given him the keys to my car so can drive to Nora’s house.”
“Good. I’m going downstairs with you.” Kevin says to Jason and Jason nods.
“Jason?... If it wasn’t Kevin or Kitty, then who?” Robert asks. “Nora? Sarah?”
“You’ll never guess.” Jason laughs.
“Aww? We never will? … Who’d be the most unlikely person to call you?” Kevin teases.
And then he and Robert share a surprised look as the same name pops up in their minds.
“Scotty?” Robert asks baffled.
“No way!” Kevin shakes his head.
“My lips are sealed.” Jason replies.
“It’s Scotty.” Kevin confirms to Robert.
“Yes, I think so. If it wasn’t, Jason would deny it.” Robert agrees.
“I just see no reason to get someone into trouble, for taking the trouble to call me.” Jason shrugs.
“Jason, Nora is waiting.” Robert reminds him and Jason nods, knowing he has to go downstairs. Robert watches as Jason and Kevin get on the elevator and he shakes his head, glad that Jason is here with him. Then he takes his phone and sends a text-message to Scotty.
“Thank you for calling Jason. Robert.”
“So, Scotty called? Wow! I just can’t get over that.”
“Imagine MY surprise when I got the message to call him back.” Jason laughs. “I knew it had to be serious and when I heard what he said about Kitty. I was just so shocked. How are you coping?”
“Better than a few days ago. Kitty is strong and, in general, in a good mood. She facing it head on. Scotty and I talk as much as we can. Sarah, Justin and I call each other often. I drop in more often on Mom to see how Kitty is doing and Scotty made some meals for her and Robert to take the pressure of mom…. But …
.. none of us could really reach Robert. We all felt like he could use someone to fall back on as well, but… He didn’t confide in any of us and when I asked him if he contacted you, he said he hadn’t and he told me why. Yet, I felt that if anyone could reach him, you could. But Robert made me promise not to tell you…” Kevin sighs.
“I’m glad you told Scotty and that he overcame his own feelings by calling me.”
“I don’t think that Scotty is too concerned about you anymore…. I hope he’s not. I married him and we plan to have a family. If he still thinks that I’m more interested in you, then I don’t know what to do, to prove to him that I’m not.”
“I don’t think that Scotty and I will ever be the best of friends, but I don’t think he still sees me as ‘the enemy’ either. In fact, Scotty was the one who picked me up from the airport and drove me here, so I believe that he definitely doesn’t hate me anymore.”
“That’s progress… He’s great.” Kevin sighs, unaware of the tenderness on his face.
But Jason sees it and it amuses him to see Kevin so much in love.
“Yes, he is. You’re very lucky. Now, get back upstairs and call him. I’m sure he’s very curious how it all worked out...”
“I will.” Kevin promises and after a little hesitation they hug.
In the semi-dark of the garage Jason can suddenly see Scotty standing there, frozen to the ground for a second, then Scotty turns away and disappears behind a pillar.
“Thank you… For looking after my brother.” Jason whispers. Kevin steps out of their embrace with a little smile and nods at Jason’s words.
Then he returns to the elevator to go back upstairs and then Jason cannot suppress the desire to tease Kevin any longer.
“By the way, Kevin, how’s the Kool-Aid in Robert’s office?”
“I hate you.” Kevin replies, but both his smile and Jason’s make his words meaningless.
The door closes and Jason turns around to walk up to the pillar where he saw Scotty. Walking around he sees Scotty standing there, his back against the wall. He joins him by leaning against the wall next to him.
“It was just a hug. It didn’t mean anything.” Jason says.
“I know. I’m fine. I was a bit surprised to see it…. But I’ve had a couple of minutes to analyze it and, honestly, it doesn’t bother me. I have faith in him.”
“And you should. He’s very proud of you and he’s so in love with you. I hardly recognize that part of him. …. Oh, and Robert knows. He and Kevin guessed.”
“I know. Robert sent me a message to thank me. I’m glad he’s not angry.”
“Looks like we did the right thing then…” Jason summarizes and Scotty nods. “So, time for me to get some sleep. I’m going to Nora’s house.”
“Maybe I’ll see you there then.”
As Jason steps in Robert’s car, Scotty suddenly turns to him.
“By the way, Jason? … How are you coping with the news?”
“I prayed. I have faith that God will look after Kitty and give her strength… You?”
“Kevin and I talk… a lot…”
“Yeah… figures…” Jason smiles, then he closes the door and a few seconds later he drives off, while Scotty sits down in his car and picks up his phone.
“Hey, tried to call you sooner.” Kevin’s voice is soft and sweet.
“How did it go?” Scotty asks.
“Perfect. Robert is more relaxed now.”
“So, no one suspects?”
“That I knew that you called Jason? No. I don’t think so.”
“Good. See you tonight?”
“Yes, I’ll try to be home early.”
“I deserve something for my trouble.” Scotty’s voice is suggestive and Kevin laughs quietly.
“I love you, Scotty.”
“Love you too, Kevin.”