About: Julia, Saul, Nora/Kevin (mention of William/Scotty)
Disclaimer: I don’t own anything
Extra: This an AU (Alternative Universe) story, so remember : The more things change, the more they stay the same. Here are part 01, part 02, part 03, part 04, part 05, part 06, part 07, part 08, part 09, part 10, part 11, part 12, part 13, part 14, part 15, part 16, part 17, part 18, part 19 and part 20
STILL CHRISTMAS 2007
“Oh my God. Julia Ridge?” A warm voice behind her says and Julia turns around. The words “it’s Julia Walker now” are on her lips, but she freezes when she sees, who the one is, who remembered her. Dominic! She had such a major crush on him in high-school and she cannot even believe he knew her name.
“Oh, hi, nice to see you again, Dominic.” She replies.
“Wow! You’ve changed since high school.” His looks travel all over her body, with an extra pit-stop on her boobs. And usually she would hate this and make some bitchy remark that she copied from Kitty, although not many men would dare to do that to Kitty.
But she ate very little today and the two margarita’s she just had, are a great way to stop the hunger and feel less insulted about Dominic’s behaviour.
“Want a drink?” Dominic asks.
“I just had two margarita’s and I believe I’m .... drunk.”
“Have a third one and make sure you’re drunk, then.” Dominic suggests and she giggles.
“That makes sense in a way.”
“I thought you lived in LA nowadays?” Dominic wonders as he watches Julia take a large sip from her drink.
“I do. I’m married... and I’m a teacher. I am here in town to visit my parents.”
“You’re husband here too?”
“No.... You couldn’t drag him to my parents with 10 horses.” She laughs. “It was mutual hate on first sight when dad and Tommy met each other the first time.”
“That bad, huh?” Dominic laughs as well. “Well, then it must be my lucky night, that I get a chance to have a drink with you...” He orders another drink for both of them, although they have not quite finished their drinks yet. And then he helps Julia to sit somewhere else where it is more quiet.
Saul rubs his eyes. He still has a few things to sort out, before he can say for sure that Ojai’s bookkeeping is up-to-date and correct. And he hopes to be on time for Nora’s Christmas dinner. He picks up the next paper. It’s a copy of a cheque for a substantial amount of money.
The cheque was made out to a Scotty Wandell. The name rings a bell in Saul’s mind, but he doesn’t know for what. Former employee? No... And suddenly he realizes that he is linking that name to Kevin. No, not someone in his firm, but his ex-boyfriend. Saul stares at the cheque, he sees the date... coinciding with Scotty’s leaving LA...
Saul bites his lip as an uncomfortable feeling creeps up. He, at first, tries to deny it, but he just knows he guessed right. Scotty was bribed! Paid! To get out of Kevin’s life... Saul feels an incredible anger rise up in him. How can William do this to Kevin? William promised Nora to treat Kevin with respect and now this....
Nora checks the room for what seems to be the 10th time, to see if she hasn’t forgotten anything. But no, the room looks as perfect as always.
“Nora, come to bed, sweetheart, it’s late.” William says, gently caressing her shoulder.
“I know, honey. It’s just... I feel there’s something I should have done, but didn’t.”
“The kitchen is spotless, the rooms are cleared of all evidence of a party, what more is there?” William jokes. Nora shrugs. She knows he’s right. She also knows why she lingers here. She missed Kevin tonight. In fact, she’s been missing Kevin for weeks. He hardly drops by anymore these days.
Work seems to be absorbing all his time. Losing Scotty obviously gave him a good reason to burry himself in his work and Nora is worried about him. She’s scared that he will do something stupid. He seems so hurt. Oh, why can he not find a man who will love him as he deserves?
She also feels stupid. She really thought Scotty was the one. She had immediately liked him. Some of Kevin’s ex-boyfriends had been arrogant smart-asses, but there had been a gentleness in Scotty that she had appreciated. She thought she had seen with how much love he had looked at Kevin. How could she have made such a mistake? She doesn't get it.
“I’ll be up in a bit.” She says to William. “Just check if all the doors are locked.”
“I know. Just want to know for sure. You know how I get, if I start to worry about it in bed.” William shakes his head and laughs. He knows.
Once William is up the stairs, she retreats to the kitchen and then, after thinking about it for a few extra seconds, she picks up her phone and dials Kevin’s number.
“Huhmbm.” She hears. Obviously Kevin was already asleep.
“Honey?” She asks nonetheless.
“Mom? What the...? It is 2 o’clock in the morning here. I was asleep.”
“Sorry, honey, I just needed to... I wanted to..” Hear your voice, say it Nora, hear your voice.
“I’m sorry. I should have called, but I had a private party and got very drunk and...”
She listens to Kevin’s words and fills in the gaps. It sounds like he’s having fun.
“I just wanted to know that you’re all right. I am worried ... You’re alone over there and I am afraid... You’ve been so quiet and so hurt these last few months. I know you loved Scotty very much. That you...”
“Mom. I love you, but you worry too much. Really, I’m not going to do anything stupid.” Scotty looks up at him, Kevin’s voice has woken him as well. Kevin smiles and his fingers caress Scotty’s cheek. “I am fine with how things are between Scotty and me now.”
“Are you sure?” Nora asks.
“Yes, Mom. Go to bed and sleep and stop worrying about me. I’m fine. I’ll see your right after New Year’s day.” Kevin’s voice is gentle and soothing and Nora complies, hanging up the phone and joining William in their bed, still worrying about her lonely son, unaware that Kevin is asleep in the arms of the man he loves.
Julia is not sure of what exactly woke her, but something did. She opens one eye and then quickly changes her mind as her head seems to start pounding like crazy, if she does that. She tries to sit up, but something heavy around her waist is holding her back and much to her shock she realizes that the thing holding her back is an arm.
A male arm. A male arm that does not belong around her waist. Especially since it doesn’t seem to be her husband’s arm. She knows that arm and this arm is not his. In fact it doesn’t belong in her bed... but then, this is not her bed... Slowly Julia starts to see, that she is the one in a bed where she shouldn’t be.
Behind her is a grunt and the arm is removed and now she can carefully sit up, swallow away the nausea and wait until the room wants to take its solid shape. She looks beside her in the bed. Slowly, because her view is not in sync with her eyes. Everything hurts. And then she recognizes the man she’s with. Dominic!
A cynical smile graces her lips. Great! Four years, in high-school, she dreamt about being in Dominic’s arms and now she slept with him and she cannot remember a single thing about it.
“Dominic?” She whispers. A growl. She says his name again, a little louder this time.
“What happened between us last night?”
“You’re in my bed. What do you think happened?”
“We slept together? As in, had sex?”
“Oh, my God!” She jumps out of bed. “We didn’t!”
“Yes, we did.”
“Can’t! I’m married!”
“Yes, you told me that last night. It didn’t stop you ... or me.” Dominic says with a dreamy smile. He had loved sleeping with Julia. “Come on. We just had a bit of fun. No one needs to know. I don’t want your husband to find out. And my girl-friend will kill me if she finds out.”
“Your what? Girl-friend?!” Julia screams, immediately wishing she hadn’t, because her head objects to the noise. “You have a girl-friend?”
“Fiancée to be exact. We got engaged just before Christmas. But she’s out of town. And then I saw you....”
“But then why? You know I’m married. You’re engaged. Why sleep with me?”
“Julia, I thought you were the sweetest girl ever. I was madly in love with you then. In high-school. I was eighteen, but you were only fourteen. You were just a kid. My sister’s classmate. It would have been wrong.”
Julia tries to understand his words. He had a crush on her? She shakes her head. Impossible.
“I have to go.” She says, gathering her clothes and getting dressed.
“No! This was wrong. It didn’t happen. You hear me? It never happened. We did not have sex!”
END OF PART 21