About: Kevin, Scotty, Chad, Jason.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Brothers and Sisters, but Alex Grodin is figment of MY sick mind.
Summary: The boys realize that they need to talk. Resistance is futile.
Writer's note: It helps if you know my series: Happy now? and Last Christmas
For almost a week Scotty didn’t say anything, he just watched Kevin very closely and tried to be sweet, but tonight he can no longer keep quiet.
“Kev, we need to talk.”
“Huh?” Kevin looks up from the paper he’s reading. “What is it, baby?”
“We… we need to talk about what happened to us, before Christmas… Alex.. Jason… Chad..”
“What about it?”
“I have the feeling, that it still preoccupies your mind. You’re quiet and withdrawn. You hardly laugh. I know you sleep pretty bad and are up half the night. I miss you when you’re not in bed with me.”
“I’m sorry. I get out of bed to make sure that I won’t keep you awake.” Kevin apologizes, though he’s not sure why he’s apologizing. He feels that he did what is best for Scotty and Scotty recognizes where the automatic response from Kevin comes from.
“I’m not complaining that you leave. I just… miss you.”
He caresses Kevin’s cheek to prove that he’s not upset or angry and Kevin relaxes a bit.
“I don’t know what to say or do. I try my best to not think about it, but sometimes … I blink and I can see him standing there with a gun in his hand and I feel like I can’t breathe and then.. he’s gone again….”
Scotty sits down next to him and Kevin lets his head rest on Scotty’s shoulder.
“I’m tired, Scotty, I’m tired of the memories. I just want them gone.”
“I talked to Robert and apparently Jason suffers from nightmares and then I called Chad, who is still in a lot of pain and uses his painkillers to sleep at night…
And I panic when I wake up to find you gone. I’m afraid that Alex will come in with the news that he just killed you and now it’s my turn…. We’re all very hurt by what happened.”
“So, what are you suggesting?”
“Chad actually joked about it … and then I agreed it would be a good idea, … to return to Clean Water Springs, this time with Chad and Jason and work through it…. Robert agrees it would be a good idea, for Jason too.”
“I don’t want to go back.”
“It might be a good place to confront this demon.” Scotty tries to persuade. “We need to move on. I know, it’s hard, it took me quite a while after his attempt to kill me, to even recognize that I was traumatized. I just wanted to forget and move on…. But you don’t forget, it’s there in everything you do.
You just don’t know it, until it crushes you.. Everyone has been affected this time. Your family, the McCallisters, Chad’s family, but Chad, Jason, you and me are the ones who got in direct contact with him, who were threatened by him. We know each other, I’m sure there a lot of emotions hanging between us.
Justifiable anger maybe even. Though I doubt that Jason and Chad are angry with us directly, there must be some feeling of having been caught in something that was entirely and definitely NOT their fault to begin with. And I don’t know about you, but I feel terribly guilty over what happened to them.
I know it’s not anymore our fault than it was theirs, but the four of us are the ones left behind with the most direct scars. There has to be a way that we can deal with this. We owe it to them and we owe it to ourselves. Not talking about it is simply not a solution…. It might eventually even ruin the little lines of friendship we have with Chad and Jason.”
“Wow…” Kevin says quietly. “How long have you practiced on that speech?” he asks, more sharply than intended.
“Two days, but I like the finished version.” Scotty immediately replies, trying to take Kevin’s remark as a joke and not to be insulted, in the knowledge that words are Kevin’s best defense.
“Do Chad and Jason both agree?”
“Chad, yes. Jason needed some extra convincing by Robert and Chad. And you were my job to persuade.” Scotty answers honestly, without taking his eyes away from Kevin’s stare.
“Alright, let’s do it.” Kevin nods.
Kevin feels a knot in his stomach when he enters Chad’s house, but finds himself quickly relaxing. The door is fixed. The Christmas-decorations are gone. The house is chilly, because the heating is not completely on. There’s a smell of clean fresh air as if all the windows had been opened. It is combined with the citrusy scent of some cleaning material.
The entire place feels and smells differently from three weeks ago, when they entered the house the first time. Chad, this time, takes his own bedroom, which means that Kevin and Scotty sleep in a different room, which they can’t complain about and they are amused to see how impressed Jason is with the room he gets appointed to.
By the time Kevin, Scotty and Jason are settled in and can join Chad downstairs, Chad has already made sure the fire-place offers a welcoming warmth, brewed some hot chocolate, put some cookies on the table for them to nibble on and informs them that they will have dinner at aunt Alice’s restaurant.
Feeling a bit nervous Scotty looks from one to the other. Chad is calm and entertaining as always. The perfect host. He talks about just anything. Jason is uncomfortable, but very responsive to Chad’s stories. Kevin on the other hand bites his lip and is awfully quiet, but not as tensed as he was on the way up here.
“Scotty!!!” Chad’s voice takes Scotty out of his thoughts. “Do you want some more hot chocolat?”
“No, sorry. I wasn’t paying attention..” he apologizes and Chad nods as if he can guess where Scotty’s thoughts were. He sits down and looking at Jason, Kevin and Scotty he starts:
“We all know what the elephant in the room is. We all know why we’re here. I get that we need a bit of time to… adjust ourselves to this situation… I wanted to suggest that tonight we do not discuss the reason why we’re here, but just try and relax and enjoy ourselves and let the awkwardness settle down a bit.”
They’re all more than willing to accept Chad’s idea and, as if they collectively let go of the breath they’d been holding, they relax and by the time they have dinner with Alice they laugh, talk and tease like old friends. Between the four of them there’s enough to talk about, without discussing the obvious, but they are aware that the worst is yet to come.
END OF PART 1