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Story of My Life - Jake's Road Trip

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Author Topic: Story of My Life - Jake's Road Trip  (Read 1254 times)
Samantha Star
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« on: October 22, 2018, 09:50:16 pm »

OOC: The following is a CD series detailing the next few days in the life of Jake Chandler after getting humiliated by his now ex-girlfriend at SVW Rampage. I’ll thank those who appear in future parts for their participation in advance.

~ ~ ~

October 15, 2018, 2:48 AM
3 hours away from San Jose, California

He sat in the parking lot of a closed Target store, the only car in the lot at this time of the morning. His eyes looked down to the screen on his phone as the automated voice spoke.

Next new message dated October 3, 2:44 PM

“Hey there, hon. Can you pick up a bottle of 40 wate on your way home? I appreciate it. I love you.”

MESSAGE DELETED

Next new message dated October 1, 4:49 PM


“Just checking in. I remember you had said the car was making an odd noise. Wanted to see if I fixed it. If it’s still doing it, I’ll look at it when you get home. I love you.”

MESSAGE DELETED

Next new message dated September 28, 2:19 PM


“You ever tried explaining to Gillie why Carmen Sandiego never changes clothes despite being a world-renowned thief? Don’t. See you when you get back to the hotel. I love you.

MESSAGE DELETED

As the next message was about to play, Jake immediately tapped to delete it too. He could already remember what it said. He could remember what they all said, since he had never deleted virtually any of them. His hand reached up to wipe his eyes again, then he took a tissue out of the glove box to dry his face a little more.

Still looking down at the screen full of old voicemail messages from her, he tapped to delete them all. When the prompt asked him if he was sure, he paused for a moment and finally confirmed it. Exiting out of that to the main screen, there she was again.

A picture of her holding his jaw as she kissed him on the cheek. It was taken at Christmas, and he could remember how itchy that Santa cap on his head felt. Another exhale followed that before he went into the options and deleted out that picture too. He loved the memory, but he couldn’t bear to look at it now.

Now with a nondescript wallpaper, his eyes looked down to his text messages. There were over 30 of them that had come in since the Pay Per View went off the air. He pressed the tissue to his face again as he could feel it getting warm all over, and quickly dried to tears as they formed in his eyes.

After opening the texts, he saw messages from many of those he called friends, even a few he didn’t even see or talk with that often. Some from FFW, some from Future Shock, and a few from around the wrestling world. At the top of the list of messages was Adam, his best friend in the world. He opened that one first.

I know you’re hurting right now, man. Been there too. Take all the time you need, we’ll hold it down here. Just let me know you’re alright.

Jake reached forward to the stereo, and queued up his media player. He then started the car, and opened a voice message as a song began to play. He only recorded a few seconds before he sent it to Adam. Then he pulled out of the parking lot and headed off into the night.

………………………….

When Adam awoke the next morning, he saw he had a voice message from Jake which he immediately tapped play to hear.

Life goes by so fast
You only want to do what you think is right
Close your eyes and then it’s past
Story of my life.



To be continued....
« Last Edit: October 22, 2018, 09:52:54 pm by Samantha Star » Report Spam   Logged

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« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2018, 02:21:04 pm »

OOC: Obviously everything in this thread is off camera since I didn't mention it in the first. Thanks to the folks who contributed to this piece, I appreciate it immensely!

October 23, 2018, 3:19 PM
Las Vegas, Nevada

Having spent the last few days in Las Vegas, Jake had grown tired of being in the city. He always enjoyed visiting it, it’s the only place he ever felt like a winner after all. But there was such a thing as too much of a good thing. And with his last day in town being this one, he was sat in his hotel room with his laptop open looking at the Expedia home page.

He wasn’t ready to go home yet, it was too soon for that. Plus he had hoped that there would be nothing left in the house that would remind him of Mallory. But with his time off, it afforded him the chance to go see some friends he only got to see at arenas. The support from people he knew and didn’t know well at all was overwhelming. He didn’t expect half of the responses he got, but maybe it was among some of those messages and texts he could decide where he wanted to go first.

He fished out his cell phone, and opened his messages. The first one he saw was from someone he was getting to know better, and a little bit of a surprise to him that she cared enough to send anything. He always thought she was pretty wrapped up in her own world.

From: O.E. Ayano

See, what you’re facing is a wild situation,
The hardest thing to do is try to be a little patient,
Life is like a track and everybody racing,
You about to get caught by the same shit you chasin’.

- Masta Ace


Jake reread the lines more than once, and it began to dawn on him what she was trying to say (or Masta Ace was). A nod of his head followed before he went through to see a message from someone he had become very close friends with practically since the day she arrived.

From Caitlyn Storm

I don't think anything I say could make you feel better, so I just want to remind you that I'm here if you need me. Big hugs.

She had always been someone he knew he could count on, and lean on too. The message brought a smile to his face as he flipped to the next.


From Missy

I can only imagine how you must be feeling, Jake. Just remember that you've got loads of friends here who care about you. Take the time you need, we'll be here waiting for you when you come back. And if you need anything we're only a call or text away.

He was glad Adam had found her. Adam deserved someone like that. He remembered many of the conversations they had had, usually with Missy ending up confused about something. But that was alright, he was always happy to explain things to her. He noticed he also had some voicemail messages, and started playing those.

Hi Jake, it's Mikayla. We've done a protection spell to keep you safe while you're away. If you need anything, spell related or not, just let us know.

The Stone sisters! He wasnn’t expecting to hear from them, but it still made him smile nonetheless. He and Mikayla had gotten along very well since they met, and he appreciated them even more when they helped him find his hotel key at the arena once. He sorted through a few more voicemails till he saw the one he was expecting the least and started to play it.

Jake? Hey, Jake, it's Frankie. I just saw what happened... honey, that's awful. If you need a place to crash, you can come stay with me, Kyla, and Emilio for awhile. There's plenty of room here. Also I will go Shaolin on her fucking ass. That's so... you're a good guy, Jake. You deserve better than that. Call me when you get a chance, let me know if I need to prepare the guest room. And I'm here if you need anything. Talk to you soon.

A wide grin crossed his face as he listened to Angelina, and put the phone down. He knew where he was going to head next as he typed in the name of the city into the destination box.

New York City



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« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2018, 08:23:09 pm »

OOC: Due to having a few shows I needed to put out, I’ve been a little lax working on these chapters. Gonna be picking back up with it though. Hope you’re enjoying it.

~ ~

October 28 - 2:11 AM

After having arrived in New York and spending a few days with Angelina Fantastica (as FFW fans know her), the “Ass-tastic One” had been nothing but supportive. She had reminded him more than once how willing she was to go Shaolin on Mallory. But the problem with that, at least for him, was that she wasn’t really someone he wanted to talk about even still.

He had gotten to meet and get to know some of her family in the meantime. And as much as he enjoyed it, he was starting to feel like he was overstaying his welcome. After all, here he was occupying space and eating their food. He was starting to feel guilty about that. He had decided already that he was going to head back west.

Here in the middle of the night, he had already packed his bags and written a little note for Angelina to find when she woke up the next morning. He also stuffed $300 cash into it to cover any expenses he had racked up since he arrived. The note read as follows:

Frankie,

I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you putting me up for a few days. I didn’t plan to stay as long as I did, but I felt so at home and away from everything that I stuck around longer than I had planned. You’ve been a great friend, and there’s not really anything I can say that will put that well into words. I did leave some money for anything I may have used or eaten while I was here. I didn’t want to be a mooch.

I’m heading back to the west coast, and gonna visit a few other friends while I’m traveling. I don’t get to see many of them except at arenas for shows, and that’s something that should change. I don’t just want friends at shows, I want them everywhere. Because they are the ones who will see you through the hard times and we both know a lot of life happens outside of the arena even if it feels like the opposite.

Thank you for putting up with me. I’m sure I wasn’t the best company in the world, and usually I like to think I’m a bit more fun to be around than during times like this. I was happy to see and get to know the people you have in your life that you love.

I’d say they are lucky people, to say the least. Feel free to call me anytime you want, and maybe we can do something sometime when I’m not feeling the way I am. Smiley Hey, I’ll even drop you a postcard from my next stop.

I feel like I’m a little bit of a stronger person for knowing you, and no matter what, you’ve got a friend in me.

Jake


Jake left the folded up note on the table before he slipped quietly out the door. He took one more look around the darkened place with a hint of a smile on his face before closing it behind him. Standing outside finally, he waited for the Uber he had called and stuffed his earbuds into place and tapped play on his phone screen.

“Sisters Are Doin’ It For Themselves” began to play in his ears.
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« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2018, 08:14:29 pm »

(Off Camera)

October 30 - 9:44 AM

Jake had arrived in town a little later than he had expected. When he was invited to come visit the Stone sisters, he took them up on the offer and booked his flight. Unfortunately for him, the flight got delayed due to an engine issue. And by the time he arrived at the door of the home, he tried to see if anyone was awake since it was so early. After all, he’d gotten there at a little before six in the morning. And he was right to assume no one was awake.

So he put his bags down, and sat on their porch not far from the door. When he got comfortable and thanks to a baby on the flight keeping him awake crying, he ended up falling asleep with his head rested against his largest suitcase. Fast forward almost 4 hours, and he was still in this position when he was….discovered.

“Jake!” His name was exclaimed by the eldest of the Stone sisters, Melody when she opened the front door. She had been about to head out to the store before her discovery. “How long have you been out here?”

He began stirring a little when he heard his name, and started to open his eyes. A big yawn followed that before he looked down to see there was a newspaper in his lap. He gave it a curious look, and then up to see Melody. “Oh….good morning.” He said sleepily, and handed her the newspaper. “I don’t know if this is yours or not, but….the paperboy has really good aim.” As he said this, he rubbed the side of his head and started to get up.

She accepted the newspaper with a little shake of her head. “Are you alright? You should have phoned or something, we would have let you in. We have much comfier places you could have slept than the porch you know.” She looked at Jake with a fair amount of concern, before she turned around to put the newspaper on a little table just inside the door. “Come on inside. I’ll make you a hot drink and fix you something to eat.”

He scooped up his bags, and followed her advice as he went in, looking around for a moment. “I would’ve called, but I didn’t want to wake anyone up. I didn’t know if anyone was going to be awake around 6am when I got here.” He took a moment to take in the scenery before plopping his stuff down, and finding a chair at the kitchen table. “I’m not hungry, but orange juice would be alright if you have it, I mean.”

“We wouldn’t have minded you waking us up to let you in. It would have been much more preferable than you sleeping on the porch!” She shook her head again and looked him up and down. Almost as if she was looking for any sign that he had suffered from his hours on the porch. “Are you sure you don’t want me to make you some food? It’s no trouble… when did you last eat anyway?” She moved over to the refrigerator after she had asked the question to pull out a carton of orange juice as he had requested some.

“Who are you talking to?” The youngest of the Stone sisters asked as she walked in through the kitchen door. It didn’t take her long to answer her own question when she spotted their guest. She ran straight over to him and threw her arms around him. “Jake! I’m glad to see  you.” She stepped back inspecting him in a similar way to how Melody had before. “Are you alright?”

“Far as I know.” He rubbed his face a little with a scrunched nose. “Sorry if I’m a little stubbly. I haven’t had a chance to shave yet. As soon as I got off the plane, I had breakfast at the airport! Did you know two small pancakes were $18? And then I came here….and slept on the porch.” He recited the story with a smile, as though none of it really bothered him even though it probably would most.

Mikayla visibly relaxed when she saw that Jake was okay, and she sat down on a chair next to him. “It sounds like you had quite the adventure. Almost like camping… just without the tent! I would prefer the tent I think, although not having one gives you a chance to look at the stars.” She realised she was rambling a bit, and gave a little shrug. “Don’t worry about not shaving, but it bothers you, we’ve already left fresh towels in the guest room. Figured you’d likely want to freshen up when you arrived.” Mikayla advised him a little proudly at their hosting skills, while Melody brought him a full glass of orange juice.

“Thanks!” He told Melody. “I was in New York before I got here, visiting Angelina! She has a boyfriend and a girlfriend, you know. I’m not that good at remembering birthdays, but she must be.” He gulped down part of the juice before he continued. “And now I’m here for a day or so, if you guys want to put up with me. After everything that happened…..going home wasn’t something I wanted to do for a little while. Does that make sense?”

“Don’t blame you at all.” The voice of the third sister, Madyson, rang out as she walked into the kitchen and rested her back against a counter top. “You can stay as long as you want, it’s nice to have company around here that we’re not related to!” She told him with a little grin as Mikayla pouted at her. “And, I’ve been looking through a few of our spellbooks… say the word and I’ll turn that bitch into a toad or something.”

He shook his head. “This happens to me a lot. I’m getting used to it by now.” He added before rubbing his mouth. “I’ve dated a couple girls in wrestling, and both left me. The last one….she just went about it a little differently.” He gulped down some more juice, almost like he was still trying to wash his mouth out days and days later. “But I’ve been keeping Gillie updated on where I am. She tends to worry.”

“You had quite a few people worried about you.” Melody said as she started mixing up a batch of pancake batter. Even if Jake didn’t want anything to eat, she knew her sisters would. “You have a lot of friends, that was clear as soon all this happened.” She paused for a moment as she put a pan on the stove, giving Mikayla an opportunity to pipe up.

“Loads of us were wondering where you’d gone after it happened. And I know that there were people looking for you that night.” She reached over to give his arm a little cross between a pat and rub. “And as for the girls leaving you.. It’s their loss. It just means that you haven’t found the right one yet, but she’ll be out there somewhere.”

“I think I may just go back to taking care of my cactus.” He said half jokingly. “You guys mind if I take a nap? I didn’t sleep much, and your porch is nice and all, but…. I can get a hotel room if it’s too much trouble.”

“Don’t even think about it.” Madyson told him as she narrowed her eyebrows. “The guest room is all set up for you. Fresh linen on the bed. Fresh towels on the dresser. And I think Mikayla even left a plate of cookies on the bedside table for you.” Mikayla nodded her head in the affirmative before Madyson continued. “You’re right at the top of the stairs, first door on the left. But one of us can show you up there, if you’d like.”

“Thank you.” He got up from his seat when his cell phone began to chirp. He stopped in his tracks a moment to see he had a picture message. He opened it...and froze for a second before tossing it onto a recliner and headed upstairs. As soon as he was out of sight, Mikayla got up from her seat and went to get the phone. Melody was about to stop her before she turned the screen on, and there was the message with a little kiss emoji above it.



Mikayla started scowling immediately as she saw it, while Melody took the phone from her with a shake of her head. She looked towards the stairs where Jake had disappeared with a concerned look. “That poor guy. As if she hadn’t already done enough, she’s still taunting him.”

“Somebody needs to give her a slap.” Madyson said with a stony expression. Mikayla shook her head in response to that though.

“That’s not what matters at the moment, looking after Jake is what’s important.”

And maybe fittingly just like his phone screen, the picture of Mallory Bennett faded to black.
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« Reply #4 on: November 24, 2018, 08:42:27 pm »

(Off Camera)

Friday, November 3, 2018, 5:44 PM

Christian held the door open for his wife as they stepped inside the seafood restaurant. The pair had heard good things about the place, and was still getting to know the area around Portland. As they approached, the “Please Wait To Be Seated” sign came into view. And while they stood, they began looking around the place. “This place got really good Yelp reviews, three and half stars on up and nothing less.” He told her until he noticed something or someone had gotten Kelly’s attention.

The blonde nodded her head as a slight frown of bemusement crossed her face. “Yeah, three and a half stars… sounds really good. Great.” It sounded like she was auto-pilot as she spoke. “Can’t please everyone but all those stars mean they got be doing something right.” There was a slight hesitation as she gave her husband the softest of nudges with her elbow. “Isn’t that… I’m not seeing things… that’s Jake isn’t it? Sat over there. By himself.”

Christian turned his attention to where she was looking, and nodded with a slightly surprised look on his face. “Yeah, it is. I heard he was traveling, didn’t think Portland was on the itinerary.”

“Are you ready to be seated?” Both their attentions snapped back to see a waitress in front of them with a smile on her face.

“Yeah, do you mind if we say hello to someone first? Right over there.” He pointed it out to her, and the waitress let them go on ahead to the table. “Jake?” He asked as the After Shock host glanced up to them.

“Oh hi!” Jake waved to them. “I didn’t know you guys were here.”

“Mind if we join you for a minute?” Christian asked before Jake gestured towards the two vacant seats across from him. It looked like he had already eaten, and was nursing a soft drink at this point.

“Be my guest.”

“Thanks.” Kelly took a seat at the table. “We’re trying to get to know the area. This place has gotten good Yelp reviews, so we thought we’d see if it lived up the internet hype. We didn’t expect to see you here… I mean, in Portland. Not exactly one of those places people just go to.” She hesitated for a moment. “I mean you know… like a nice place to live maybe not somewhere…” She trailed off once more. “Anyway you look… are you staying anywhere nice while you’re in town?”

“Oh well, I have a flight leaving the airport in a couple hours. I drove it in from Salem, where the Stone sisters live. You know the three witches in Future Shock?” He asked before taking another sip of his drink. “They’re really nice people.”

“Huh, Spent a few days with a trio of witches? Well that must have been interesting, to say the least. See anyone else of interest since you got in?” Christian asked.

“Yeah, I went to this convenience store to pick up some stuff before my flight. And I got stuck in line behind this kinda...well...obnoxious lady in a bikini top. I never knew girls wore those in winter.” Jake answered with a little shrug.

“Some people like to make a fashion statement. Or are really married to their wardrobe choices regardless of the weather. You’d be surprised at how determined some women can be when they find something they believe works for them.” Kelly took a deep breath as she gave Christian a look. “It sounds like you’ve been having a real adventure. With witches and obnoxious crazy ladies in convenience stores. Where’s your flight heading to? What’s the next stop, if you don’t mind me asking?”

“Los Angeles.” He answered. “I figure it’s time to head home, not that I’m particularly looking forward to it. There’s a lot of memories at home, and I’m not sure how many of them are left that’s going to hit me when I get there.”

“For what it’s worth, Jake, I know this wasn’t easy. And I know it’s not going to get easier going home. But think about what’s there you will be happy to see. Like Gillie! I’m sure she will be happy to see you. She’s one of your best friends, isn’t she?”

“Of course, I’ve been keeping her updated on where I am. She tends to worry, see. She says Mallory’s long since gone, and that the only people there are her….and O.E. Apparently she’s moved in while I was gone.” Jake told them.

“O.E.’s a great girl, and I’m sure she’ll make for a great roommate. And I’m not just saying that because I manage her. You just have to keep in mind with all this Mallory stuff. Not every girl out there is going to be like her. As a matter of fact, I’ve never seen someone like her do what she did. So try not to hold a grudge against the entire gender for the actions of one...well….bitch.”

“Yeah. I mean we aren’t all like that… for a lot of us, that particularly idea wouldn’t even cross our minds to do.” Kelly added. “And like Christian said, I’m sure O.E,’s a great person to have around as a room mate - maybe a little difference but that’s a good thing. And I bet Gillie’s going to try and make things as easy as possible; try to help and support you with whatever you need when you get back. Hell, her and O.E. might even have got the lighter fluid and a match ready just in case there’s stuff you really want gone for good.”

“I think it’ll be alright, nothing to worry about.” Christian added. “And when the time comes and you feel like you’re ready again, I’m pretty sure you won’t have to worry if there’s anyone interested in you of the female persuasion. I think most women would be thrilled to have someone like you in their lives.”

“Maybe.” Jake said quietly. “It’s not something I’ve really thought about, to be honest.”

“I’ll tell you what. Why don’t you stick around and keep us company while we try this place out? And we’ll cover the tab, how’s that?” Christian asked.

“You don’t have to do that.” Jake told him.

Kelly smiled at him. “But we want to and better being here with friends than sitting around all alone in an airport waiting and waiting and waiting for a flight. At least here you’re in a good restaurant - if the reviews are to be believed - and will get good conversation. At best airports are just about tolerable. Just. With a book or some kind of distraction. They’re a necessary evil usually.”

“Yeah, I’ve been in a few recently.” He replied. “Okay then, I’ll be happy to hang out with you guys. I have learned one thing though on this trip.”

“What’s that?”, asked Christian.

“You find new friends in the most unlikely places.”

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« Reply #5 on: November 24, 2018, 08:43:24 pm »

(Off Camera)

Saturday, November 5, 1:19 PM

With as much travel as he had done within the last few days, Jake Chandler’s last flight was the one that he looked forward to least: the flight home. Having arrived at LAX at least three hours ago, he hadn’t left yet and was sitting at his terminal ever since he disembarked. There was no one else in it at this point, since the next flight didn’t board for another 3 hours. But there he was playing a game on his smartphone and every so often looking out the window.

He didn’t really feel like he wanted to go home. He didn’t know how much it was going to hit him with Mallory gone. Had she gotten all of her stuff out yet? Was she going to be there by any chance? Had O.E. already sold most of his stuff? Okay, well maybe not so much the last one. The one person he did miss that was hopefully going to be there was Gillie. After having lived with her all that time (along with Mallory), the trip felt really odd without her. He’d done this all on his own. But lost in his thoughts, he failed to notice he had the attention of someone.

“Excuse me? Jake? Jake Chandler?”

Jake tore himself away from the Sonic game he was playing on his phone, and looked up. At first, he thought someone had come to ask him to leave. But he realized that wasn’t the case when he saw Stacy Jones, one of the newest Prospects and one he hadn’t really met till now. “That’s me! Hey Stacy, where you heading?”

“Heading to Boston for Future Shock episode 50, just been here in Cali visiting some friends. Mind if I sit down?”

“Sure, go ahead.” He cleared his carry on bag out of one chair next to him, and set it on the floor before offering the spot to her. “Make yourself comfortable.”

“Thanks.” Stacy sits down beside him and she notices the Sonic game that he was playing on his phone.

“Man, I love Sonic. I remember when I used to come home from school and my brother used to let me play the first one on his Sega Megadrive. It was either that or we’d both play on Streets of Rage, I always picked Blaze when I played that. No idea why but I always sucked when I played as Axel or Adam, haha.”

“Blaze looks like one of the girls on the FFW roster to me. This game is called Sonic Runners, it was only $3 and I’ve been playing it since I landed.” Jake handed her his phone to let her give it a try if she wanted. “It’s just a runner, and pretty fun too. Wanna try?”

“Maybe some other time, Jake. I’m not really a mobile phone kind of gamer, I’m old school and prefer to keep my phone as a tool for texting and calling.” She hands the phone back to Jake who shrugs before placing it back down.

“So anyway, I know we don’t know each other all that well yet, but I’m actually glad I bumped into you. How are you holding up after...well...after what happened?”

“Better than I was. I was kinda upset at first, but I’ve been seeing a lot of people since then and visiting places. It’s been fun. Felt like I was playing a real life version of Carmen Sandiego...but with me as Carmen.” He put his phone away from there. “I like console games too, but they are hard to fit in my jacket pocket, I’ve found.” He added with a tiny smile. “Ever try to fit a PlayStation in your coat pocket? It’s not easy.”

She chuckles, shaking her head. “No, I haven’t. That what a Nintendo Switch is for. I’ve been playing the Crash Bandicoot N Sane Trilogy on flights and stuff.” She looks over to him, trying to read him. “You sure you’re okay? I can’t believe that bitch would do that to you. It boils my fucking blood when people do that kind of shit to someone that they’re supposed to love.”

“Yeah, I’ll be okay. I’m kinda used to it. Mallory is the third wrestler in a row to dump me. One did it by letter, the other just left leaving another letter. And then...well that one.” He rubbed his mouth for a second. “If it had to happen, I think I’d have preferred another letter opposed to what I ended up getting, ya know?”

“I don’t blame you. But still, this sort of thing shouldn’t be something you should have to get used too. You seem like a nice guy, and in my opinion any woman would be lucky to have you.” She gives him a warm smile. “You just haven’t found the right one yet, and those three previous women? It’s their loss. But I’m glad to hear that you’re gonna be okay. And hey…”

She removes her cell phone from her pocket and gets her number up on it and passes it to Jake. “...here’s my number, put it into your phone and if you ever feel like you need to talk, just give me a call or a text.”

He took it, and started putting it into his contacts list. “I’ll have to take you up on that. There’s never such a thing as having too many friends. Oh…” He handed the paper back. “Put your gamertags on there. We might can team up...at least virtually.”

“Sure thing!” Stacy writes down her gamer information and handed it back to him. “And I agree on the friends thing, I honestly wouldn’t be here today had it not been for the many friends I’ve been lucky enough to make over the decade I’ve been doing this.” She sits back in the chair, resting her head back and lets out an audible sigh. “Man is it boring waiting in airports...I’ve never understood why you gotta be here several hours before your flight.”

“Mostly in case TSA has to check all your stuff.” He told her. “But I guess I should head home, huh? I can’t stay here all night….well I could, but these chairs aren’t that comfortable.” Jake replaced the paper back into his pocket, and scooped up his bag. “I’ll probably see you sooner than later though. Thanks for saying hello though, it was a real pleasure to meet you.” As he tossed his bag over one shoulder, he extended a handshake to her.

“Likewise.” She accepts his handshake. “And hey...hit me up if you’re looking for a guest on After Shock, yeah? It’ll be cool to sit down with you and go over the Future Shock shows some time. And take care of yourself as well.”

Jake gave her a nod and headed towards the baggage claim. No two ways about it….

It was time to go home.


To Be Concluded….
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« Reply #6 on: November 25, 2018, 10:14:36 pm »

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Tuesday, November 6, 2018, 2:14 AM

After talking with Stacy, Jake had lost a bit of his nerve about going straight home. There was some anxiety over how it was going to feel in that house. After all, he’d already had 2 girlfriends dump him who lived with him there. Granted, the last one was far worse than the previous but still. He had hoped that the memories wouldn’t be too strong, because he did miss being there. Despite everything with Mallory, he still wanted to surprise Gillie and see she was alright.

Instead of going straight there, he went to get something to eat and also pick up a few things. Mostly, he was just wasting time dreading the whole experience. After visiting his old job at the bowling alley and literally closing the place, he finally headed home. It was pretty late, and he didn’t see any lights on from the windows. Finding his key, he walked around and got his bags out of the trunk and tapped the alarm button on his key fob. BEEP BEEP.

As he got to the door, he began to wish he had left the headlights on so he could see the lock on the door a little better. But he didn’t want to wake the girls up or scare them either. After a few attempts, he finally managed to get the key in. But he was making some noise because his bags kept hitting the door with a repeated thud.  Finally, the key made it in and he pushed the door open. He stepped into the darkened foyer, and let his bags drop to the floor and closed the door behind him. It wasn’t until he hit the light switch that the welcome home he was expecting….wasn’t what he expected at all.

“YI-YI-YI-YI-YI-YI-YI-YI-YI!!”

Jake was welcomed by the sound of air and body mass rushing past him. He felt something swing at the air around him, though luckily he didn’t need to move for them to miss... Again. And again. And again. The person in question was swinging around a large textbook, likely the first thing they picked up.

O.E. didn’t even pay attention to who she was swinging at with the ponderously large book, only screaming at the top of her lungs. “You think you gonna fuck with my homey’s house! My man been through enough! You best get to stepping before I beat your whole ass out this house! You gonna taste this--”

The young Ayano stopped to read the front of the textbook. “Extra--Extra--Extractions of The Grap... Grapple...Grapplenomi--”

“O.E!” The book was quite physically wrenched out of The Orochi’s hands, Gillie panting as she looked at Jake in horror. Still not seeming to realize it was Jake, O.E. snapped at the Englishwoman.

“What you doing? I’m tryna protect this house for... Jake.” O.E. blinked.  He looked back at her with his arms up until he heard his name, slowly putting them down.

“If this is a bad time, I can come back later….” He said with a hesitant tone. “I guess I made a lot of noise, but it was hard finding the keyhole without any light.”

Gillie sighed. “Jake, this is your house. C’mon... O.E. was just trying to make sure it was safe for you to come back... In her own flipping way,” She shot a withering glare at the Ayano who mouthed ‘I thought it was Miss Suck-The-Devil’ when Jake turned around from her. Gillie handed her the book and motioned her forward before turning her complete attention back to Jake.

“We thought you’d be home sooner is all. Have a seat... You need a soda? Water? Something to eat?” She worried over him something like mum who hadn’t seen someone in months, which it likely felt like, keeping in touch or no. After his heart stopped pounding in his ears, Jake didn’t answer at first.

Instead he gave Gillie a big hug, scooping her up about an inch off the floor before giving O.E. a hug of her own. This one didn’t have a lift though. “I drank a 60 oz. Big Gulp at the bowling alley, so I’m good for a little while.” He told them before going into the living room, and plopping down on the sofa in the center cushion. “I’m sorry if I woke either of you up.”

“You know Gillie, she don’t sleep unless she read through at least three or four chapters or something,” O.E. commented, hands in her sweatpants pockets. She leaned up against the wall while Gillie stood for a moment where he had lifted her and put her down before following, and taking a seat next to him.

“...And O’s been playing... Madden? NBA? Some sport game on her PS4.” She looked back at O.E before glancing back at Jake. “Now that... Now that you’re back, are... Do you want...?”

O.E. looked around. “She wants to know if you wanna just redecorate the whole house, my dude. You say the word we repaint these walls, do something about this furniture, get that smell of WD-40 out the garage... I got just the thing, too. Grandma Amazake Ayano’s patented floor cleaner. Makes anything... And I mean ANYTHING smell like plums after you done cleaning.”

He shook his head at that suggestion. “I don’t think changing the house is gonna be totally necessary. Except one room. I mean everything here, we’ve all used and spent time. I think the only room I want to change is my room. That’s the only place where….it was just me and….” He took a very long deep breath, electing not to even finish the sentence. “Would you two help me with that? And if you want, we’ll change your rooms just to be fair. But that’s the only place in the house I’d rather not be familiar now. You think that makes sense?”

Gillie nodded gently. “There... Is nothing I need to change about my room and O.E.’s already... Done her own changes to the old room.” The Ayano grinned wide, seemingly proud of taking whatever objects that had been left over and trashing them thoroughly. The Kent native put a gentle hand on Jake’s shoulder and spoke up again.

“That’s what we’ll do then. We’ll get paint and replace everything in there if you want until it’s more...” She looked as though she was struggling to find a word. More him? More clean? It looked as though it was on the tip of her tongue before she just let the sentence hang.

“Until we do, I think I’ll either sleep in the guest room or maybe down in my game room on the sofa there. That’s something I missed, ended up buying one of the Super NES Classic boxes to take with me on the road. But I missed you guys most!” He gave his attention to O.E., and I got you both presents while I was gone. In one of my bags is a copy of Spider Man for your PS4.”

“Eeyyyy,” O.E. grinned wide before nudging Jake gently in the shoulder, before looking at Gillie. “Can we show him the thing yet?”

“Not yet, not yet.” Gillie shook her head. “We missed you. We weren’t sure what to have waiting for you so we made something.”

“Before you do that, let me give you both what I got.” He held up a finger, and darted towards his bags and fished out a couple items with a bow on them. One was a book, the other was the game he already mentioned. He handed O.E. Spider Man, and took a seat to give Gillie hers. “Leave a save file for me.” He asked Ayano before putting a very old book in Gillie’s hands she no doubt knew well. “That’s a signed first edition copy of ‘The Jungle Book’ by Kipling. It’s really really old!”

Gillie stared at it in silence, the book looking as though a few page turns might leave it turned into dust. If anything this only seemed to make her doubly happy. She slowly put it down and hugged him in response, humorously lifting him almost a foot off the ground. O.E. grinned as the Englishwoman squeezed. “That it is... Thank you Jake. Mind if we show you what we made you?”

“Sure!” He pulled his jacket off, and tossed it into a chair after forgetting he had it on the whole time. “You guys didn’t need to do anything though. After all, this is our home. Not just mine.”

“I know I promised before that your game room, err... Man cave wouldn’t be touched but we thought it might help just for this special occasion.” Gillie noted as they began to head downstairs. She switched the light on and it looked for the most part as though Jake’s man cave had not been touched, save for part of the left wall.

It was a full size cardboard cutout of Michael Bay... That had been absolutely riddled with red targets. Each of the targets’ centers were painted with white numbers. His forehead worth one hundred points, his feet worth one hundred and fifty each, his crotch with a large three hundred point lettering, his shoulders with fifty-points each... For some reason his hands were five-hundred points.

“You hit those with a dart in the hopes that he ain’t never gonna be able to create something again,” O.E. noted, holding up some darts. Jake nodded his head as he listened, then circled it for a second as though he were sizing it up for something. And then he took two steps back….and for the first time in his life, Jake Chandler hit a dropkick that sent it tumbling to the ground. He climbed back to his feet with a smile. “How was that?”

O.E. whistled loudly and Gillie blinked in surprise.

“Boy got jumps,” O.E. noted in amusement. “Might see you do a shining wizard on this thing next time.”

“Well... He’ll never make another Turtles sequel now,” Gillie mused, looking down at the cutout.

“You know something? I was really dreading coming here. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel.” He moved back towards them after dusting himself off a little. “But...I was dreading it for nothing. You guys did an awesome job, and I’m sorry if I worried anybody. But I learned one thing especially during this trip. And that’s if I ever need them, I got friends all over the country. But there’s no place like home.” He gave them both another hug, and was about to head back to the living room when he stopped between them.

“I also learned you have to be careful when you play poker with a dude who’s nickname is “Face” when you’re trying to win a rare book he owns.”

“Say word? Something like that happened when me and Gill went to Atlantic City,” O.E. commented.

“O...” Gillie grumbled. “Jake does not want to hear about...”

“‘Course he does! You know Gillie here can sing a killer version of ‘Tom’s Diner’... See we lost a hand of Blackjack...”
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