Six weeks later
Port Charles was so beautiful this time of year. The leaves decorated the ground in a variety of warm colors. Gold. Brown. Yellow. The beginning of Autumn represented a change. A change in seasons as well as a change in life.
The young couple who relaxed on the blanket knew all about change. They had both suffered through so much. Individually. And as couple. The road that lead them back to each other had been a difficult one to travel, but travel it, they did. Now, they were so glad they had made the journey that brought them back together.
"Isn't this wonderful?" he sighed, pulling her into his arms. Determined to make sure that this time around was even more romantic than the first, he had suggested a picnic in the park. A secluded picnic in the park where they could be completely alone and free from interruptions from the outside world.
"Yes, it is. But I have one question," she said, resting her head on his sweater covered chest. The sweater was thick and felt good against her soft cheek, but it couldn't hide the powerful beating of his heart which serenaded her ear.
"Yes?" he whispered, rubbing his chin across the top of her head.
"Where are the children?" she said with a laugh. She knew the lengths he went through to ensure that their privacy was maintained, but she couldn't help but tease him about it.
"Aw, come on. There can't be any children here. What would they think?" he asked, teasing her back.
"What would they think about what? Two people having a picnic? I don't think they would notice us at all," she said, pulling back only enough to gaze into his laughing blue eyes.
"They may not notice a picnic, but they would notice this," he whispered, cupping her face in his hands. This was a kiss that captured their mutual passion for each other. Just like every time they touched, the feelings that flowed between them were electric and hot. And wonderful.
His hands moved from her face to roam sensually down her body. Coming to her back, he gently lowered her back onto the blanket. As she parted her tights covered legs, he rested himself between them. He was careful not to rest all of his weight on her.
He needn't have worried. She wanted to feel him. All of him. Her hands traveled from his golden mane to the broad expanse of his back and down to rest on his firm, hard bottom, pulling him closer against her.
He loved the aggressive side of her. She was so passionate, so alive. Softly moaning her name, he dragged his lips away from her mouth to trail tiny kisses along her jawline, the sensitive spot behind her ear, and further down to nuzzle her neck. His tongue teased and tormented the pulse that beat rapidly there. This was her weak spot. It always had been and he relished how she reacted when he touched her there.
"Are you sure about this?" she moaned, arching herself against. Soon, she wouldn't be able to turn back. Soon, neither would he.
"Yes, sweetheart. We have the entire place to ourselves," he reassured. His hands moved under her sweater. His light caresses caused her to moan in pleasure which aroused him even more. God, how he missed her soft sighs of satisfaction. How he missed her.
"Oh, Jason," she sighed, nibbling on his ear.
"Oh, Keesha," he groaned, before he again claimed her lips in an ardent kiss, which she returned with a passion and intensity that matched his.
"Ohh…" she sighed, turning over in her bed. Her arms wrapped around her companion who was more than pleased to return the favor.
His fingers threaded themselves in her dark, mussed curls as he lowered his face to her ear. Softly, he whispered, "Keesha, baby, wake up."
"Mmm," she moaned, rubbing herself against him.
This must be some dream, AJ thought. Now, if only she would hold that thought when she woke up. Maybe, this time she would.
AJ lowered his lips to hers and gently kissed her. When she parted her lips, he breathed a sigh of relief and pleasure and deepened the kiss. He wanted her so much, and it had been so long. Maybe this time she really wouldn't pull away.
This wasn't right, her sleepy conscious told her. The lips…the touch didn't feel right. It didn't feel the same. Jason doesn't kiss like this, she thought.
Keesha ended the kiss and pushed herself from AJ's arms. She left the bed and quickly pulled on her robe. Turning her back on his questioning gaze, she picked up her brush and began to furiously brush her hair.
"Keesha, what's wrong?" AJ asked. Lately, there was a distance between them. Ever since she came back from that hellish experience beneath Port Charles' surface, she had been different. At first, he thought the changes in her stemmed from her ordeal and that she needed time to recover. But now, he wasn’t so sure. She was blocking him out and he wanted to know why. He needed to know why.
"Nothing, AJ. Why would you think that?" she asked, jumbling the words together. She needed to get out of there. Away from him. Away from his questions. And away from her dreams of Jason which confused her and left her wanting. Wanting what she wasn't sure and God knows, she was afraid to ask.
"The way you pulled away from me just now. Hell, the way you always pull away from lately. Have I done something to hurt you?" he asked, watching her as she hurried around the room, grabbing things from her dresser and closet. He wanted to reach out to her and hold her. But he forced himself to keep his distance. Rather, to keep her distance. To not bother the wall she had been so quietly, but certainly building over the last several weeks.
"No, of course not. You haven't done anything," she answered, her eyes refusing to meet his gaze because she wasn’t ready to face the hurt and confusion she was sure to find there. "You know that I want to get to the hospital before my appointments arrive. Check on Simone and make sure that Tommy takes a break."
Simone and Tommy, he thought. Her standby excuse. Damn, he thought.
If he had known she would be this way, he wouldn't have bothered her by staying the night. But he had foolishly or maybe wishfully thought that last night was different. She had returned his kisses with not her former enthusiasm but she had returned them all the same. Maybe she was nervous and a little shy, he thought. He would take his time and be gentle with her. Show her that pleasing her was his top priority and that making her happy made him happy.
When they came into the bedroom and things continued to progress, he really got his hopes up. But at the last minute, it ended the same as all the other times. She pulled away. But last night was different. Instead of not protesting when he began to leave, she asked him to stay. She told him that she wanted him to hold her. So, he stayed. Now, he almost wished he hadn't.
Keesha glanced at him and saw the pain that covered his face and filled his eyes. Damn, I hate doing this to him, she thought. Why can't I be what he needs, she wondered. Because of Jason. Because of the way he felt when he held her and kissed her. And, because of the way she felt when he looked into her eyes in the limo and later when he told her good-night at her door.
Six weeks had passed and she was still confused. She hadn't seen or spoken to him since that night. She had learned from various sources that he wasn’t in Port Charles. That he had secretly left and took Michael with him. Somehow, that knowledge weakened her all the more. Where was he? And when was he coming back? And when he did, what would happen next? Would he gaze upon her with those warm, inviting electric blue eyes or would his eyes be cold and emotionless? Should she care?
She shrugged the questions away as she stepped into the shower. Her day couldn't and wouldn't be consumed with thoughts of her ex-best friend, ex-lover. She had more important things to do. She had a life to live.
"Keesha," Jason whispered, as he awakened from his slumber. Always the dream ended the same. With them making love. The scenery changed. Sometimes, they were on a yacht, in a hotel room, in the shower. But always, regardless of the scenario, the ending resulted in their bodies becoming one.
Jason shifted in the seat and readjusted his seatbelt. He glanced down at Michael who slept in his baby carrier. Jason smiled as he brushed a red lock of hair off of Michael's forehead. You have everything before you, Jason thought, as he gazed at the sleeping child. Don't make the mistakes I did, was his silent advice.
He turned his gaze back to the white clouds of the sky. He was going back to Port Charles. He was going home.
Six weeks, he had been away. He had taken Michael, and together they went to visit his best friend, Sonny Corinthos in sunny Puerto Rico. Sonny was surprised by his sudden appearance, but he didn't let on. He didn’t question him. He simply let him be, knowing that in time, when he was ready, he would tell him. Which he did. But not at first. Later. Much later.
The first day there had been peaceful and soothing. Michael had played in the sand and charmed Sonny's entire household with his ready smile and his baby laughter. Sonny and Jason had talked. Rather, Sonny talked and Jason listened. Instinctively, Sonny knew that Jason wasn’t ready to talk. Whatever brought him on his doorstep without warning or invitation, not that one was needed, would take some time for him to sort through.
The peaceful first day was followed by a hellish first night. The searing pain permeated Jason's entire head and caused him to cry out, begging Sonny to take Michael to another part of the house and leave Jason alone to deal with the pain. To deal with the memories that came with it.
Sonny followed his bidding and left him alone. He went back to check on him a few times, but each time, Jason demanded that he leave him. Sonny did. He left him, but he didn’t stop worrying about him.
Thinking back on it, Jason felt that he must have remembered everything that first night. The pain was so great and his mind became flooded with memories. His parents. His grandparents. AJ. Keesha.
All the memories from before and after the accident consumed him and left him weak. He remembered AJ's drunken episodes. The promises to stop which were never realized. The night he jumped behind the wheel of a car and then, Jason jumped in after him. With him. To stop him from making a horrible mistake.
The only mistake that was made was Jason's. He was a fool to climb into the car with a drunk driver. He knew that AJ was drunk and out of control. Why did he think he had the power to stop him? Why did he so senselessly risk his life?
Two years. Two years were gone. He could never make up for the hurt and pain he caused his family. The pain he caused Keesha when he so callously turned her away. Told her that he didn't know her and that he didn’t want her around. His heart squeezed in his chest when he remembered it all now. He couldn't get the picture of her tear-stained face from his mind. Her eyes were red with tears that he caused.
Damn AJ and his freaking disease.
After the pain subsided and the memories made sense, Jason left his self-made cell and went in search of Michael and Sonny. Holding a sleepy Michael in his arms, Jason told Sonny everything.
Sonny took it all in. He didn’t know what to say at first. Would he lose his little brother? Sonny didn’t want to think about that, but he had to ask. Jason Quartermaine wouldn’t give him the time of day, but Jason Morgan was his best friend. What would happen now?
Jason reassured him that nothing would change. Sonny had been his family. Sonny would always be his family. Jason would have to make some decisions regarding his place in the organization, but their relationship would never change. Never.
Sonny nodded at his reassurances and believed him. He later listened as Jason confessed to him the problem that really plagued him. The two women in his life. Robin and Keesha. He loved one with all his heart. He knew that now, but the other one… What he felt for the other one was far from love. When he thought of her, he became cold and void of any emotion. He had to face her. Face them. But how?
In the end, Sonny held the answer. Go to her, he said. Tell her how you feel. Think about what you need and who or what you can't live without and go tell her.
Jason smiled as he remembered Sonny's words. He was now following Sonny's advice. He was going to her. Going back to Keesha. Soon, he would be in Port Charles again. In a matter of hours, he would be home. He would approach her slowly and cautiously at first. After the way he treated her, he had no right to force her to listen to him. But in time, she would. He knew she would. There was still something between them. The limo ride told him that.
But first, he would have to deal with Robin. It wouldn’t be pretty, but it had to be done. Jason stroked Michael's hair again and then, leaned back in his seat. He closed his eyes and once again, he dreamed of Keesha.