Friday, November 27, 2015

Chapter 106

Lexie and Sally have brought the trio out to the dog park with a very pregnant Snowball, Lexie had been working on the book for the trio and putting out feelers through the her fellow writers.  A few were panning out, she was scheduled to have lunch with one editor that Ava Stone had recommended, and tomorrow she was lunching with Karen Hawkins and her editing team.

“Do you think Ava’s editor will take you on?”  Sally asked her as she tossed the ball for Snowball.

“Ava thinks so, he wants to branch out into my genre, that sort of scares me, but she loves him and he’s not a pushy type that puts close deadlines on his writers. That I think is a plus on his side.”  She fed Livie bites of banana, Cullen and Maddy were reaching for their share of bites.

  “Good, how’s your new book coming?”  Sally sat on the bench with a tuckered out little momma at her feet.  She reached and broke off some banana off for Cullen and Maddy.

“I had forgotten how hard it is not to go all Mother Goose or Doctor Seuss.” Lexie laughed “It must be good, because the trio loves it and I’m hearing the voices in my head again.  I’ve been missing the voices, man that makes me sound schizophrenic, but if it’s going good, I hear the characters voice in my head.”

“You’ve talked about that in chat before.  I want to thank you and Mr. Jon for letting me help with the kids.”  Sally said as she wiped some banana remnants off Cullen’s chin.

“Hellen was needed at home, and I hate going through all the interviews, I know you, you signed all the papers without problem and the biggest thing is I trust you.”  Lexie looked over at Sally’s bowed head.  “The boys like you too.”

Sally looked up at Lexie and blushed a little.

“We’re just friends.” Sally mumbled.

“I’m glad you’re friends, senior year and all, harder classes and visiting Notre Dame and all.”  Lexie watched her babies start to yawn and rub their eyes. 

“He’s got a good head on his shoulder, he knows what he’s going into.  He’s the man of the house while his dads gone, he told me last night while I was rocking Maddy,”  She looked up, “he was rocking Cullen.”

“Oh, he’s helping with the Trio?”  Lexie looked at Sally to see how she reacted.

“There’s nothing going on Lexie, we’re just friends.” Sally laughed.  “I’m almost two years older than he is.”

“There’s a problem with being two years older?  Jon’s older than I am, we have no problems.”  Lexie told her.

“I think he thinks of me as an older sister.”  Sally told her as she tossed the banana peel into the garbage.

“The way he watches you when you come into the room, that’s more than a sisterly look.”  Lexie teased.

“I think you’re mistaken.”  Sally packed up the Trio’s picnic and made sure Snowball was ready to head back.

“If you say so.” Lexie giggled, this was going to be fun to watch, she thought.

Latter after dinner and a little television everyone was in their room, Lexie was in Jon’s office with her laptop.  She was reading her email when she got a skype notice.

“Hey rock star, are you at the arena?” Lexie asked Jon as he came onto the screen.

“Yeah Richie is up there making the women cream in their panties.” Jon laughed as he towel dried his chest, before changing shirts.

“It’s just the Richie girls, yours are at the bar getting drinks.” She laughed.

“I just needed to see you.”  Jon waved off the hairdryer but accepted the cup of hot tea.

She noted the change in his tone, she had seen last night’s audience.  Matt was sending her pictures nightly.

“Well Rock Star, we have six kids and I had lunch with an editor today, I am where I need to be and you are where you need to be.”  Lexie reached for her cup of tea.

Jon’s head popped up, “Lunch, with an editor, was this a male editor?”  He slid closer to the screen.

“I don’t think we have a problem with Kevin, he brought my third number one fan with him, his wife.”  Lexie sipped her tea to hide her smile. He could be an ocean away, shaking his ass in front of skimpy clad cougars, and still get all alpha on her.

“Doesn’t mean he wouldn’t take you on the table and make you scream.” Jon told her as he put on his red shirt just for her.

“Oh come on Rock Star, you know I only scream for you,” Lexie rolled her eyes at her husband.

“I have to go shake my money maker, give the kids and extra kiss from their pop and I will be online later after the show tomorrow night.”  Jon started to stand up and blew her a kiss.

“Shake it Rock Star, but please don’t break it.”  She blew the kiss back to him.

Thumbing through her email she had heard from her first kids book publisher, Scholastic, they loved the rough draft and sent some illustrations for her to approve.  By the time Jon got home the book would be in print at the printers.

Lexie stood on the field with the other parents at the football practice.  She wasn’t shocked that Muffie and Biff, with their designer booze filled coffee cups.  She tried to keep her distance from the Biff’s, sure fire deterrent was she brought Snowball to the field.  They would stop and have a vet checkup, the puppies were due around the same time Jon would be home.

Romeo got done first and they headed to Jesse and Jacob’s field, thank God they were side by side.  She dodge one Biff to run into an overdressed Muffie looking for Jon.  She signaled to the older two she would meet them at the car, taking Romeo and Snow she headed to the car.

“Can we stop for Dinner after the vet?”  Romeo asked, as he sipped his soda.

“Are you hungry Romey?” She tossed him a baggie of trail mix.

“Pizza, please?”  He knew if he didn’t get his order in first or they would end up eating at home.

“We’ll order deliver after the Vet.”  She told him as the other two climbed into the car.

The boys sat in the room with her and Snowball.  The vet came in and fired up the ultrasound machine.

“How many puppies are we hoping for?” The vet ran the wand over her tummy.

“Just a few,” Lexie said.

“I think six.” Romeo said

Jesse shrugged his shoulders, he kept looking at his watch.

“I think three is a lucky number in this family now.” Jacob laughed.

“Well I see your lucky number three, maybe four.”  The vet wiped off Snowballs tummy and let the little momma up.  “She should start nesting soon, will need to keep an eye on her, she is a small dog.”

Lexie looked at her baby, nothing could happen to her Snowball.

They barely beat the pizza guy to the townhouse, Sally had the trio down in the family room.  Lexie settled in to watch the Jesse and Sally show.

“How was the vet appointment?”  Sally brought plates to the table, Jacob got the glasses and ice, Jesse got the Soda’s.

“Three maybe four puppies.” Jesse told Sally as he handed her a glass of soda.  They sat side by side on the sofa.

Lexie sat on the floor with the trio and her plate of Pizza.  Romeo brought her a glass of soda.

“Daddy calling tonight?”  Jacob asked from the table.

“I think so, the schedule is on the fridge.”  Lexie told him as she played with the trio.

Jacob went to the kitchen and looked for the schedule on the over loaded fridge door.  Coming back he grabbed another slice smiling at Lexie.

After dinner they tried to keep the trio awake, for Jon’s call.  They were starting to get crabby when the home phone rang.  Jacob rushed over to the phone and grabbed the receiver.

“Hey Dad, I made the team.”  Jacob told his father.

“Way to go Jakey, proud of you son.”  Jon told his son.  “Put it on speaker Jakey.”

“Okay Dad,” Jacob put the call to the speaker.

“Hey Rock Star, you’re missing pizza night.”  Lexie told him.

“Hey my favorite writer,” Jon’s voice came over the speaker.  This sparked the attention to the trio witch started to jibber jabber.

All of a sudden, Cullen comes out with something that sounded like “Da.”

You could hear a pin drop in the room.

“Did Cull just say Da?”  Jon motioned for Richie to come over, he tapped the speaker button on his phone.  “Cull just said Da!”

“Sounded like Da to me.”  Lexie beamed.

“Sounded like Ru to me” Romeo chimed in with a smile.

The object of their discussion just grinned and put his fingers in his mouth. End of his talking for the night.

“Hey, before we get cut off, how was the interview and the vet, I need to find puppy homes soon.”  Jon asked Lexie and the rest of the band waved off the puppies.

“The interview went great, I should have news to tell when you get home in two weeks.  About the puppies, the vet said maybe four, but could be more.”  Lexie informed Jon.  “Hey Rock Star, I sent you a story in your email.”

“I saw it, will take a look tonight.  Love you all, got to go.  See you guys in two weeks.”  Jon said over the crackling on the phone, then the line went dead.

Later that night she was reading her email when Skype beeped.

“Hey Rock Star, what are you still doing up?”  Lexie smiled at Jon.

“I read your story and loved it, wanted to let you know.”  Jon leaned back on the headboard of the hotel bed.  “I went out with Rich, we ended up bar hopping and I think it was well documented.”  He chuckled.

“In other words, Rock Star, you two got blitzed, shit faced, blot toed.” Lexie laughed.

“Yeah one of those, we’ll pay for it tomorrow, erase that, today.  I miss you, I can’t wait to go home, and I’m even making my schedule off.”  He yawned.

“Go to bed Rock Star, I love and miss you very much.” She blew him a kiss.

“Love you.”  He blew her a kiss back.

Signing out of skype she signed off her laptop.  Picking up her empty tea glass, she headed down to the kitchen.  Passing the family room she stopped, there sitting on the sofa, watching a movie, in the dark was Sally and Jesse.

“Just friends my ass.”  Lexie shook her head and moved on to the kitchen with her glass.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Chapter 105

Lexie looked up shocked at the tone of Jon’s voice.

“I was going to tell you when we got home, I didn’t want to ruin everyone’s vacation.”  Lexie told him finally.  It was like a weight lifted off her shoulders.

Stephanie looked between her dad and Lexie, as she moved to go exit the room.  Just as she made it to the doorway it hit her. Did her smoking pot and getting her picture taken smoking pot cause Lexie to lose the movie offer?  She stood in the doorway and waited on this to all come back on her.

“That’s what your four hour meeting came to, Thomas pulled your movie deal on your first book?  Why didn’t you tell me this Lex?”  Jon moved further in the room and took the chair that Stephanie left.

“Because, I let him do it Jon, I let him pull the movie.” Lexie told him, her hands in the little dryers, waiting for her nails to dry.

“How did you let him pull the movie deal?”  Jon leaned forward to talk to her.

“Because I told him I wasn’t going to meet my deadline for the next book and I wanted to take some time off.  He said I needed to make my deadline or it would look like the bad press that Stephanie stirred up was the reason.  I told him he was crazy, that I would put the book out next summer. He said it needed to be out sooner.”  Lexie told him as she checked her nails for drying.

“So you move the deadline and put one out sooner, you’re always writing, can you pull a book from your notes?”  He knew about writing a song and how he and Richie had books of songs, just sitting and waiting for their moment of glory.

“I could, but my heart just isn’t in it and I was writing a kids story that I was telling the trio.  I asked Thomas about putting it out instead and he went ballistic.  You would have thought I asked him to cut off his balls.” She gave a tired laugh and turned off the nail dryers.  “Jon I want to tell him I quit about I want a new editor. But I want to line up another one before I do that.  That’s why I want to take the time off.”

Jon sat back and thought about what she just said.  She seemed to have thought this all out.

“If that’s what you want to do, then if I can help in any way, you’ll let me help?”  Jon reached out and pulled her onto his lap and into his arms.

“If I have any problems, I’ll be sure to let you help.” She smiled at him just before his lips descended onto her.

Stephanie breathed a sigh of relief, she hadn’t caused a problem for Lexie. Tears rolled down her cheeks, Jesse said this all might come around to bite her in the ass, and it just almost did. Pushing off the wall she headed down to the family room where the boys were playing video games.  She was surprised to find Sally and Jesse down there too, playing with Jake and Romeo.

“I though you two were going to a movie?”  She asked as she plopped down on the sofa by them.

“We got there, one movie was sold out and the other one we had seen already. So we came back here to watch a movie, the boys conned us into playing a foursome game.”  Jesse sat close to Sarah.

“Sounds like fun,” Stephanie rolled her eyes.  “I’m gonna make some popcorn, anyone want some?”  She got up and headed to the kitchen.

Sally handed her controller to Jesse and went to help Stephanie in the kitchen.

“Have you heard from Mark?”  Sally asked her while Stephanie put popcorn in the popper.

“Yeah, he’s coming by tomorrow, he told me he’s between ladies.”  Stephanie laughed.  “We’re just going to be friends.  I don’t need any problems before I head to college.”

“Mark is always between ladies, even when he was dating me he was seeing someone else.  Just don’t let him try anything on you.”  Sally told her. She felt like an older sister to Stephanie, and wanted her to know the kind of guy Mark was.

“I’ll keep that in mind.”  Stephanie said as the corn began to pop.  “Thanks, Daddy and Lexie were talking when I left about the movie, her editor Thomas cut the movie deal because she wants some time off.  He’s not a nice man.”

“Lexie’s the only writer he has left, he’s destroyed a lot of careers.” Sally told her.  “When I heard she was having problems with him, I read up on him, you’re right, he’s not a nice man.”

“Daddy will help her find a new editor, he does have connections.” Stephanie said as she put the popcorn into bowls.

“I hope he does, it would be a shame if she stopped writing.” Sally said as she picked up one of the bowls and followed Stephanie back into the family room.

Lexie and Jon had joined them in the family room, Stephanie noticed that they were a little more rumpled then when she left them.  Smiling she handed them a bowl of popcorn.

It was close to one in the morning when Lexie finally got the younger boys up to their room. Sally and Jesse headed to the garage to Sally’s car, and that left Stephanie with her father.

“You two get things worked out?”  Stephanie asked as she curled her feet under her and turned toward her dad.

“Yes, I support her with her decision to take the year off, and I’m gonna put out some feelers to get her a new editor, hell she’s been on the New York’s best sellers list for years.”  Jon leaned back and popped a handful of popcorn in his mouth.

“You know, some of the writers at the conferences talked to her about leaving Thomas.  He was the only editor who never showed up to the conferences, daddy the whole time she was in the hospital on bedrest, he would call her every day to make sure she was writing and not just sitting around.”  Stephanie picked up the boys bowls and combined the leftover popcorn into the main bowl.  “He wasn’t even there when she won her award.”

Jon listed to what his daughter said.  She had gone with Lexie to the conferences several times, so she knew what was going on while they were there.

“The more I hear about Thomas, the more I hate that little shit.”  Jon grabbed another hand full of popcorn.

“Yeah, on that I agree with you dad.” Stephanie told her father, “On that we agree.”

The rest of the vacation was relaxing and all too soon they were loading the van and heading home.  Mark was Mark, he attempted to sway her into badness.  Jon had even told her one night, “Your mother always said your Uncle Mookie was the Devil, I think he handed over his pitchfork to Mark.”

Sally and Jesse made plans for her to come into the city for a visit. She was looking at change her job and Hellen had family that needed her services. So Sally would come in and take over being the trio’s nanny.  That would be perfect all the way around, the trio loved Sally and Jesse couldn’t be happier.  In two weeks she would be here, to take over.

They returned home from taking Stephanie to college.  She had met her roommate, Dorothea and Lexie had decorated her side of the room and they had checked out the clubs and the precollege parties and concerts.  As Dorothea and Lexie talked about the boys and it was decided that Lexie would send Dorothea a copy of the schedules.  It seemed like a truce was reached, and the boys would visit their mom when they wanted to.

Jon left in the morning to begin Bon Jovi’s tour, Lexie and Jon headed to Teterboro, where they met the rest of band for the flight to London.

“I’ll call you when we land and get to the hotel.” Jon murmured as they sat in the Escalade on the tarmac.  Lexie was going through his flight case, making sure he had the small travel frames on the kids and one of her and him, and  that his passport and id’s were in order in the travel wallet.  He would be gone a month, about twenty five shows.  “Your camera and batteries are all packed, take lots of pictures, I’ve never been to London.”  Lexie told him as they watched the rest of the  band showing up.

“I’ll take you for our anniversary, we’ll do the whole tourist trap, West End, the Tower and Piccadilly Circus.  I’ll even to take you to Harrods with the Black card.”  Jon laughed and Lexie joined in.

Then she sobered, this was the first time since the Trio was born, he was leaving her.  She felt tears prickle behind her closed eyes.

“Hey, it will be over before you know it.” He enfolded her into his arms. 

“I know, but I’ll miss you” She sniffed.

“And I’ll miss you.  Just like I missed you when you went away for three weeks, just don’t trip up Sally and break her arm.”  He tried to make her laugh.

“I won’t.”  Lexie sniffed again.

All too soon, there was a knock on the car door. Matt was there to get Jon on the plane.

“Wheels up bro, time to fly.”  Matt said as he tapped on the glass.

“Call me when you land?”  Lexie asked him.

“The minute they tell me I can use my cell.”  He told her with one last kiss.

They got out and walked hand in hand, as Matt followed with his go bag.  One last kiss and he was up the steps to the plane.  She stood there until the door closed. She walked to the car and turned as the plane moved into the cue to take off.  Standing there waving like a fool as the plane lifted into the air, tears rolling down her cheeks, she waited till it was a dot in the blue sky.  Getting into the car, she finally had the driver take her home.  She heard her cell phone beep, letting her know she had a message.  Pulling out her phone she tapped the message icon

744 hours to go and counting. XOXOX

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

I'm Back oh yeah, Chapter 104

Sick as a dog, but as promised, here is the next chapter.

Lexie had been avoiding this question, not only from Thomas, but also from Jon.  Granted she had used the kids and Jon’s upcoming month away for tour, when she talked to Thomas, but would Jon fall for it.  With all the things going on with Stephanie, and feeling like she had failed, she knew that it was a cop out.  She had never failed at anything before, she wanted to write children’s books, she conquered it, she moved to adult mysteries and she succeeded at it.  Being a mother to seven children, has her second guessing.

“You’re going to be gone for thirty one days, the boys will be at football tryouts and practice, the trio will be five months old and trying to pull up and crawl.  I’ll have so much on my plate, I won’t have any time to write.” She got up and walked over to her desk and closed her laptop and put her iPad in the drawer and turned to Jon, “It’s only for a month or a year.”  She gave him a smile.

Jon listened to her explanation of why she was taking time off, and knew this was all just a small tip of the iceberg.  They had met when she had writers block, but she was always tapping away on her laptop or iPad, so writers block wasn’t the problem. He knew that smile he had seen it before, right in front of the paparazzi.  She joking called it her Bon Jovi press smile, like the one he had. That glazed over smile that never made it to his eyes.  She had joked about it when he did Fan Club Meet and Greets.

“Darlin’ I call bull shit on that, is it writers block?”  Jon moved to sit on the edge of the bed, but kept an eye on the Trio.

“No, I just don’t have time to write Jon, I do have six kids that are going to need my attention for the next month to get them ready for school and to football practice and games.  That means more to me than writing right now.”  She told Jon.

Jon started to say something when he heard a knock came on their door. Saved by the knock. He watched Lexie open the door and let in Hellen in to get the trio, she had Stephanie with her. Stephanie knew the vibe in the room was electric, since she heard her parents arguing for the first time.

She walked over to the bed and picked up a sleeping Cullen, he snuggled to her chest.  She would miss these little babies, they would be most likely be walking by the time she came home for Thanksgiving.  She looked between her dad and Lexie and hoped that they would work things out.

“Night Daddy,” Stephanie said as she followed Hellen who was carrying both girls and heading to the door.  “Night Mom.”  Stephanie smiled up at Lexie.

“Good night sweetie.”  Lexie said to Stephanie.  It was a small baby step, but at least she called her mom and not Lexie.

Lexie waited till the door closed and heard footsteps moving down the hall.  She turned to Jon and smiled.  “She called me Mom.”  Lexie felt tears prickle the back of her eyelids. All thoughts of what they were talking about before the trio left, wasn’t important.

Jon held out his hands and she moved into his arms, now was not the time to get into an argument, he would talk to her about it tomorrow.

The next day they went tubing on the river and had a blast. Lexie and Stephanie put together a huge picnic lunch. The trio were in diaper swimmers and little float tubes with sunscreens, each kid had a tube. Chairs were set up around a cook pit.  Jon and Jesse hauled the coolers and baskets of food.  Lexie had the younger two boys collecting sticks for a fire, so they could do damage to the two bags of marshmallows.

Jon got in with the trio, Lexie joined them after she got the site set up.

“They seem to love the water,” Lexie said swimming up to Jon.

“Yeah they sure do, just like the rest of their family.”  Jon said as he pushed Olivia toward her mother, loving the way she giggled and slashed the water at her mother.

Sally joined them after work when they were making s’mores, the trio were asleep in their seats.  Lexie put a marshmallow on her hot dog fork and sat between Jon knees, as he also held his fork over the fire.

“Do not burn me.”  Lexie said to Jon as his marshmallow flamed up.

Jon brought the marshmallow out so Lexie could blow out the flames.

“They make such a cute couple.”  Sally told Jesse.

“Yeah, Dad is like a whole new man.  His divorce to Mom hit him really hard.”  Jesse told Sally.  “He’s happy and watching him around the trio, it’s fun to watch.  They are making him learn what having three kids in diapers means.”  Jesse chuckled.

“Can I ask you two something?” Sally asked Jesse and Stephanie.

“Sure.”  Stephanie assured her.

“Has Lexie told you guys about the movie based on one of her books?”  Sally asked them.

“Sure, we found out before she got pregnant with the trio. This is a big deal for her.  I have followed her from the first book, but she told us in the last chat, she was taking a break.”  Sally told them.

Stephanie shifted uneasily on the log they were sitting on.

“Yeah, she and her editor have been meeting, she’s had a rough month or two.” Jesse said looking at Stephanie.

“Well the movie is off, this came from her editor’s site.  I wanted to talk to Lexie about it, but she just smiled and said we’d talk later.”  Sally told them.

“That would explain what they were arguing about last night.”  Stephanie told them.  She looked over where her dad and Lexie sat.

All too soon it was time to head back to the cabin.  Jesse and Sally had plans to go to a movie and Stephanie stayed home to do Lexie’s nails.  Jon took the younger boys to the Game store to pick up a few games.

Lexie was soaking her fingernails when Stephanie brought out the polish and files.

“I haven’t had my nails done since the trio was born.”  Lexie sighed and followed Stephanie directions.

“Sally was telling us about your post on line about taking a break.”  Stephanie reached out and took one hand out of the water.

“Yeah, with your brother’s football schedule and your dad starting tour, I decided to take a break.”  Lexie told her as she buffed her nails.

“So that isn’t what you and daddy were arguing about last night?”  Stephanie clipped at her nails.

“We weren’t arguing, we were discussing.”  Lexie laughed.

“I’ve seen daddy’s arguing face and his mad face and that was his arguing mad face.”  She put the hand back into the water and took the other hand. 

“Really, hmmmm, mad arguing face?”  Lexie looked puzzled.  They had never really had a knock down drag out argument, so she had nothing to fall back on.

“Yeah, he gets this tight face and his voice gets flat.  He and Mommy had a few fights before the split and I just know the sound of his voice.”  She finished with the other hand.

Lexie was quiet thinking about last night and what Stephanie was telling her.  Neither of them heard Jon get back with the boys.

“When are you going to tell him, Thomas killed your movie deal?”  Stephanie said just as Jon walked into the room.

“Your movie got killed?” Jon asked.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Uh Oh

I know you all are waiting patiently for a chapter, I have two at the editor. But and its a big but, I haven't had a vacation since 2012 and i have a chance to go to the beach and i am taking it.  I will be back on Tuesday the 10th.  If I have anything from my editor I will post both of them.  Thanks for understanding that this is important to me.  I really need my toes in the sand, even if its November and gonna rain most of the time I'm there, I really need this time away.

Alice Faye