AN: I am so sorry for not posting sooner. I was out of the country this summer and then I went straight back into school and school has been crazy. Here is chapter 3. After chapter three there is an epilogue and then I am done. I can't believe that. Thank you to all who read this and even more thanks to those who have reviewed. I hope that you enjoy!
Chapter 3- White Lines
I've got to get some distance between my heart and my head . . .
When the door slammed shut Tommy just sat on their bed too shocked and numb to react. Then he was hit by grave fear-it was Angie all over again. The argument, the running out with his keys, and he hoped this time it wouldn't end tragically. He quickly threw on clothes, grabbed keys to another car, and ran out the door to search for Jude.
He searched G-Major, the pier, a favorite coffee spot of Jude's open all night long, even Spiederman's and Karma's. No matter how many times he thought that this place had to be where she is at-she wasn't there. It had been a few hours and he was out of mind with worry and guilt. He hadn't even thought of what he was going to say to her when he found her he just wanted to find her. Eventually Tommy ran out of places to search and headed back home hopping she came back to him.
As Tommy entered the Penthouse he called out for Jude but received no response. He threw his coat and keys on the living room coffee table and started wandering through their home. Ultimately he ended up in Jude's home studio/office. She liked to call that room her inspiration room. Tommy never liked Jude calling that particular room her inspiration room. In typical male fashion he told he that title should go to their bedroom. He remembered the first time he told Jude that she just laughed and rolled her eyes. Later that day he demonstrated to her why the title should go to their bedroom. Jude then proceeded to demonstrate to Tommy why the home studio/office should be called the inspiration room. It turned into a game of each one trying to demonstrate why each of the rooms should deserve the title. Tommy smiled at the memories and tried to remember who "won" the last tittle war, but it had been a while . . . a long while . . . and he couldn't remember. Shaking his head in the negative and grimacing Tommy assumed the last time was around the time the bantering stop.
That started Tommy thinking; "God, had it really been months? Why didn't he see the signs? Was he working to much and not notice that they were having problems?" As much as Tommy would have liked to blame his ignorance of the problem on work he knew that was not true. Tommy wasn't ignorant either. He knew that something was wrong but he just ignored it, all the problems, hopping the problems would go away and the two of them could be happy again. "If only he opened his eyes to the problem he could have . . . what could he have done? When he wasn't even sure what he wanted except Jude with him . . . but on what terms?"
Tommy glanced around the room that was so Jude. He saw recording equipment, guitars, mementos from tours, gold records proudly displayed, journals, and then there was the wall of photos. Photos of the various famous people and fans that Jude had met. Photos of family and friends, Sadie, Stuart, Kwest, the Spiederman Mind Explosion, of him, and Jamie. When he saw the photo of Jamie and Jude at her sixteenth birthday party Tommy could have kicked himself. He never checked at Jamie's for Jude. Tommy thought about going over there but decided against it because there was no guarantee that Jamie would let him see her. He reached for the home phone and pushed the speed-dial for Jamie's apartment.
The phone range and range and just as Tommy was about to hang-up Jamie answered. The conversation was short and curt. Jamie confirmed that Jude was there, she was physically okay, but not ready to talk to Tommy. Jamie told him that he would call him later but Tommy wasn't going to hold his breath. After all Jamie was not his biggest fan or even a fan of Tommy's. All Tommy could do was wait and think.
Tommy sat on the couch in Jude's studio for hours staring out into space and every few minuets shaking his head in the negative and sighing. The rumbling of his stomach brought him out of his pensiveness. He headed for the kitchen to grab something to eat. He was stuck with how bright the rest of the Penthouse was with all the blinds open. Jude's studio was pitch-back since Tommy hadn't bothered to raise the blinds. He assumed that it was mid day but he really didn't care.
Coming back from the kitchen he paused in the living room on his way back to Jude's studio. Glancing around the living room his eye attention was captured by the bright red and orange striped coffee table. They -correct that- Jude found it in a little shop near the Empress Hotel in Victoria and Tommy was just present at the time of discovery. Tommy called it an eyesore while Jude defended it saying it had character. He declared that they were not going to be taking that piece of junk home with them. Yet, here it was, in a prominent place in their living room. Tommy even defended it when Kwest questioned its existence. Jude had this way of changing his mind.
Tommy was in Jude's darkened studio when the home phone interrupting his introspective. "Jude?" Answered Tommy but it wasn't. It was Jamie. Jamie told him to "come over in an hour or so."
As Tommy approached Jamie's door he hoped that Jamie was not there only Jude. He knew that Jamie would have this look on his face saying 'I knew you were going to hurt her.' There is no worse feeling then living up to someone else's poor expectation of you. Tommy lifted his hand to knock and instead of his normal loud confident knock it was a quiet and unsure knock.
Jamie opened the door and nodded Tommy in. In the entrance hall the two stood there sizing each other up. Jamie had his coat in his hand and started putting it on. "She's in the guest room asleep," glancing down at his wristwatch he added, "for the past hour or so. I'm going to meet Laura for dinner-the guestroom is down this hall and two lefts." He paused then added, "I'm trusting you with her." Tommy nodded his head in acknowledgement of the information, cleared his voice, and started to talk. "Andrews – I" Jamie interrupted him with "Don't screw it up. Don't go in there if you don't know what you want."
"I know what I want" responded Tommy.
"Good. I don't want to get in trouble with my Victoria Secret Model girlfriend for being late to dinner so I'm going now." With that he left the apartment and all who were left in the apartment was Tommy and a sleeping Jude.
Jude's eyes fluttered open to a dark room. She assumed it must be evening and wondered why Jamie let her sleep for so long. As her mind cleared away the cobwebs of sleep the hairs on the back of her neck pricked up. Jude sensed someone watching her. She was curled away from whoever was watching her. She turned over in bed to face her observer but could only make out a vague outline of a person hunched forward in a chair. Jude turned again away from the observer and reached over to the bedside table to turn the lamp on. The room was quickly flooded with a soft dim light. Jude eyes blinked as they adjusted to the flood of light and she turned back to see Tommy sitting in a chair staring directly at her, his eyes soaking her up.
As Jude noted the day's worth of stubble on Tommy she asked, "How did you-." Only have her question answered before she could even complete the question.
"Where is he?"
"Out to dinner with Laura."
"How long have you been here?"
As questions were asked and answers supplied the tension in the room grew. Both sets of eyes were locked on the other. Tommy and Jude were waiting for the other one to say something so they could get to the problem at hand. Jude was determined not to be the one who started because as far as she was concerned she said all that she had to say already. Tommy realized that he was going to have to start.
"I really do love you Jude."
"I know Tommy but that's not the problem."
"I know," said a signing Tommy. "Last night . . . it took me by surprise. I knew that something happened to our relationship. . . well. . . it has been strained for a sometime now. Hasn't it?" Sought Tommy. Jude nodded in the affirmative to Tommy's question. He continued on, " I just didn't realize the extent of the strain until last night. And the reason . . . I had no clue that you felt this way."
"The marriage thing."
"Thing?" Jude questioned Tommy is warring manner.
"That came out wrong. I just wish I would have known sooner so . . ."
"You could have handled it better?" Supplied Jude which caused Tommy to choke back laughter and the shared a smile.
"No, I probably would have handled it just as bad. But it might have given me time to think. Honestly I never thought about us marring. Never." Tommy saw hurt flash through her eyes when he admitted that but he pressed on. "Jude- you know what happened during my first marriage. I cheated on my wife, I fell in love with another woman, only to choose my career over her, and she ultimately died because of me. After all that, marriage left a very sour taste in my mouth."
"So you are going to hold all that against me?" Asked Jude. She tried to hide the hurt but her voice betrayed her. Tommy stood up from his seat and moved to sit next to her on the bed. Jude scooted away from him but his left hand reached out and grabbed her right hand pulling her closer to him. As the two held hands Tommy continued with "You were right last night I was scared. I am scared. I am afraid that if we get married I will make the same mistakes again. I love you too much not to have you in my life."
"What are you saying Tommy?" Asked a hopeful and confused Jude.
Tommy reached out with his right hand to the back of Jude's head guiding it so the their foreheads meet. "I do want to marry you someday, but I have some demons slay first. Can you give me some more time?" Tommy felt Jude shake her head 'yes' while she told him, "for you yes." Then Tommy felt her hands wrap around his neck pulling him closer so that their lips could touch and just before her lips descend upon his he heard her say, "I love you too." That was the moment that he knew everything was going to workout for them.
Home . . .