I just got the notion to add to my little Prison Break one-shot. I really don't know if this will become anything. If you like it give me a holler. It inspires me to write more! XD
Lincoln couldn't keep his attention on the road. His gaze was drawn to the bundle of limbs beside him. LJ. The boy was curled into a ball on the passenger's seat, his dark blonde head resting on the window. After visiting Sofia in the hospital Lincoln had rented a car and made some calls to book a room in a hotel. LJ needed rest and Lincoln needed time to think.
The man reached over and rested his large hand on his son's head and his jaw clenched as the teenager jumped from the contact. Wide eyes turned to look up at him and a knot formed in the man's stomach. He had put his only child through so much. Too much pain. So many nightmares.
LJ offered an apologetic smile for flinching and Lincoln's hand slid down to rest on LJ's neck.
"How you holding up, kid?"
"Okay, I guess."
"Not long till we're there."
"Where we going?"
"I got us a room in a hotel."
Lincoln removed his hand and placed it back on the steering wheel. They drove in silence for a few minutes.
"Do you think Uncle Mike is okay?" LJ asked quietly. Lincoln gripped the wheel tighter.
"He'll be okay, LJ."
"But how do you know that? How do you know?!" LJ cried out, sitting up straighter.
"I just do. Now enough of this." Lincoln's voice was stern. He couldn't bear the thought of his little brother being in trouble. In trouble and alone. After everything he had done for him.
"LJ." Lincoln scolded. "Close your eyes. Go to sleep. I'll wake you when we get to the hotel."
LJ's lip almost pouted out of stubbornness and Lincoln was reminded of nights when LJ would fight so hard not to go to sleep. He always hated having a bedtime.
"LJ. Sleep." Lincoln said softly. The boy rolled his eyes and rested his head back on the window.
"I'm not tired."
Lincoln frowned as he watched his son's inner struggle to keep his eyes open and suppress the yawn. What nightmares waited for LJ behind those long lashes?
They arrived at the hotel and Lincoln checked them both in as LJ dragged a bag out from the back of the car.
"Room 215. This way." The man took the bag from the teenager and led them to their appointed room.
As LJ shut the door, Lincoln pointed to one of the single beds.
"Dad, I'm not..."
"You're not tired. I know. LJ, I just watched you cover up twelve yawns in fifteen minutes and you can barely keep your eyes open."
"I can so."
"In the bed. Now."
The teenager glared up at his father and his arms crossed in front of his chest defensively.
"LJ. You are going in that bed one way or another."
The staring match continued for a moment or two before Lincoln stepped closer to his son.
"Fine! Fine. I'm going." LJ moaned moving away from his dad. He kicked off his trainers and jeans and climbed under the covers.
The man gave his son a minute to get comfy and then sat down on the edge of the bed.
"Just close your eyes. I'll be here when you wake up."
"Will you sit here for a bit longer?"
"Yeah." Lincoln moved until he was leaning against the headboard. He threw an arm over his son's slender shoulders.
"Yes, LJ." Lincoln said with a sigh.
"Will you tell me about you and Uncle Mike when you were kids?"
"You want me to tell you a story?" Lincoln asked, looking down at the boy. LJ blushed and played with the helm of the sheet that covered him.
"You don't need to...I know it's stupid...It's just...When I was little and I had a bad dream, you'd tell me a story about you and Uncle Mike to help me go back to sleep."
Lincoln smiled fondly and hugged LJ closer.
"Okay. One bedtime story coming up."
"Dad! It's not a bedtime story!" The boy whined. "That's lame."
Lincoln laughed and settled down on the bed. He thought a minute. He was always getting Michael into trouble with his schemes when they were kids. One particular memory came to mind.
"Okay, you'll like this one. It was a boring Sunday and my best mate was away on holiday. There was no one else to pass the time with and that's when I spotted your uncle sitting in a corner reading. He was nine and the book was heavier than him! I was so bored. Crazy bored. And that's when I decided to get back Mrs Jones for bursting my football the day before. All I needed was an extra pair of hands. That's where your uncle comes into this. I told him... ..."
"...and that's when she turned around and figured out it was us that had put her cat in Mr Lennard's mail box."
Lincoln laughed nostalgically and when he glanced down at his son he noticed LJ fast asleep, a dead weight on his arm.
"Sweet dreams, kiddo." Lincoln murmured and kissed the boys forehead gently. It was so good being able to hold his boy again. Safe and sound. The man closed his own eyes and let his thoughts drift off to childhood memories. He just wished Michael would come home soon and then their story really could have a happy ending.