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The Life You Always Knew

By ArabellaBlack


disclaimer: I do not own anything.


Jacqueline was supposed to be a boy, she knew that much. She was supposed to grow up just like her father and become the heir to the club. She was supposed to be a prince – no, a god among men. She was supposed to sit at the head of the table, amongst the people she would call her brothers. She was supposed to be born with a dick rather than a pussy.

But she was only a girl. A five year old girl that was supposed to be an old lady and would never amount to anything else. That's all they saw when they laid their eyes on Jacqueline Teller, future old lady. She doesn't say anything about it or wonder out loud about the club's future for her because she is happiness and the light during the Sons early days. She is loved by her family, by the mother who braids her hair in the morning and the father that kisses her cheek, the stubs on his face scratching her skin, and the uncles that smell of whiskey and cigars.

Jackie is loved by many. The clubhouse is her home, her universe, and she doesn't say anything, despite knowing deep down, something was wrong.

Thomas Teller is born during a rather chilly day in California and Jackie hates him. Jackie hates how much he looks like their father more than her. She hates how everyone instantly praises him. She hates how he did something she could never do. She hates how he is the boy everybody has been waiting for.

Gemma Teller's face brightens up in a different way when Thomas is around. She smiles sweetly at Jackie, but around Tommy, it's different. It's more genuine.

She hates Tommy and she feels as though she has convinced herself of this, but then her father picks her up in his great arms and brings her to Tommy's room. She turns her head away and buries it in the crook of John Teller's neck.

'He reminds me of you when you were born,' said John, chuckling softly. 'Small wisps of hair and blue eyes.'

Jackie frowns at the comparison. She doesn't want to be like Tommy, she doesn't want to look like him. But curiosity has already built up inside of her and she turns to look at the spawn. Her body relaxes and John puts her down, next to the crib, next to the baby.

Jackie stares at him for a moment. Pale skin, icy blue eyes, and chubby fingers reacted out to touch her. She hesitantly sticks her finger out and he grabs a hold on, gurgling with delight. He has a strong grip and Jacqueline doesn't dare move an inch. An unfamiliar sense of love and protection flows through her body. She smiles back and thinks of only one word: brother.

'Tommy's a Teller isn't he?' said John. 'Strong willed, just like his sister. Got a set of lungs on him as well.'

Jackie smiles, though she doesn't look at her father. Her little brother is perfect and he could never hurt her.

In amidst of the happiness of the new son, Jackie manages to creep away without anyone noticing. She walks into the room she has only seen glances off. Gemma tells her not to go in there; that it was only for men and is was only their business. Jackie doesn't like her mother's rule, but she keeps her mouth shut, just like the good girl she was supposed to be.

There was only one light bulb in the whole room and the shined on the table in the middle of the room. She smiles at the entrance. The sense of breaking the rules – Gemma's rules – felt exhilarating. She takes a step forward, looking around just in case. When nothing happened to her, she continued to walk forward, the tips of her fingers treading along the cool surface. She then reached the head of the table and manages to pull herself up into the chair. She sits down comfortably, her legs crossed and the palm of her hands resting on the surface.

The Reaper was carved in the center of the wood, cigar clung to the room as well as cheap beer, but none of these passed through Jackie's mind. Her blue eyes scan the room; scan each chair in front of her, the chairs that were angled to where she was sitting. Her body tingled at the sensation. She felt… Jacqueline felt powerful.

Tommy Teller dies and the best of Jackie goes with him.

The funeral hurts her. Tommy is buried in the ground and all she wants is to go with him. She is forced to wear a dress. Jackie can't stand to be near her mother, nor her father. Instead, she stands next to Opie, who holds her hand in his own rough palms. She doesn't cry during the funeral, and she doesn't go to console Gemma when she is brought down to her knees, weeping.

Jackie keeps her eyes on Tommy's tombstone, promising herself that she wouldn't cry, though she knew a part of her was going with her brother.

John Teller dies a few short years later and Jackie finds it hard to compose herself, but she does her best and she knows Gemma is proud of her.

Opie later brings her to the garage later and they stare at the pieces of John Teller's Harley. He awkwardly placed his hand on top of Jacqueline in a sign of comfort.

'Wanna talk about it, Jackie?' he asks. It's obvious that he's uncomfortable, but at least he's making the effort to show that she's still loved within the confines of the club.

Jackie kisses his cheek, noticing how red he turned, and turned back to the ruined pile. They dig through it together, the only sound in the air were the metal scraps.

Whore. Slut. Cunt. Bitch. Baby. Doll Face. Slut. Slut. Slut. Bitch. Biker Whore. Bitch. Slut. Baby.

High School is hell, but Jackie manages to find the humor behind it. She laughs at people who whisper behind her back. She laughs at the teachers who shake their heads when they see the clothes she wears that shows off the tattoos in memory of her father and brother. She doesn't care about their opinion – who are they really? They mean nothing to her. She doesn't care about math or history or geography.

There was one subject she does at least try in. English. Or maybe it was because of the girl she was sitting beside. Tara Knowles was very interesting. There was something about her that made Jackie instantly notice her. Tara Knowles didn't shy away from Jackie, but she didn't exactly talk to her either.

It was only a couple weeks after the new semester when Jackie notices the bruising around her collarbone. Jacqueline passes over some cover up and Tara nods in thanks. They somehow form a friendship. Tara Knowles is the first real friend she has in the outside world. She's smart and has a dark sense of humor Jackie admires and laughs as they both drink beer they stole from Tara's father's liquor cabinet.

They laugh, drink, smoke and ignore the looks Gemma Teller (well, Teller-Morrow now) gives them. Tara doesn't hurt her or gives a fuck about the life Jackie lives in. She's got her own problems and doesn't want to deal with them when they two of them get into trouble for who-the-fuck knows what.

But years later, during their senior year, Tara looks at Universities in Chicago and Jackie knows she'll never be able to see her again. Their too different and Jackie is stuck making the same mistakes her parents have made, though she didn't know that at the time.

Tara Knowles leaves and Jackie is alone once again. But then something happens. Opie Winston comes back into town, leaving his mother behind and entering their lives once again. He hit his growth spurt and is about a foot or so taller than Jacqueline. His bead grows out and covers his face neatly, though Jackie has a feeling that in no time, it will be just as wild as he is.

They spend as much time together, catching up for lost time. Jackie hates Mary Winston for taking him away, but is grateful for him coming back. They go to Club Parties together, and there is something safe about being with him. His arms around her shoulders make her feel warm and safe.

Then he starts to Prospect and she starts to put on a fake smile in front of Gemma, in front of Clay and in front of Opie. There's a part of her that hates how everything is turning out, but, honestly, what did she think was going to happen? She was never going to be one of them. She was never going to be a Son. She was never going to Prospect. She was never going to be VP or President. No, that's all for Opie now. A descendent of a First 9. Co-founder's son.

Everyone tends to forget that her father is John Teller and she is also descended from one of the Founders, and she's Gemma's daughter, through and through.

She learns to put on a pleasing face and smile when needed. She wasn't going to be a Son, but the best she could hope for was an Old Lady, and Old Ladies can make or break a club. She wasn't sure which one she was going to be in the end. But she was going to prove to everybody that she was not going to be overlooked and they were going to remember her.

Jacqueline was an old lady, though she didn't exactly know how it happened. It seemed as though everybody else was convinced that she and Opie were together. She listened to Gemma and Clay talk about it and didn't bother to correct Bobby.

Old Ladies can make or break a club.

When Clay presents Opie with a brand new kutte and the party is swinging, Jackie walks up to him, grabs him by the kutte and presses her lips against his. It was rough and chaste and awkward, but it made a statement. Everyone hollered around them and Opie's rough arms circles around her waist, pressing them closer.

They fuck later that night, slowly and Jacqueline sees stars when she came. What the hell did she wait this long to be with him?

Jackie starts to keep a small little book in the back of jeans. She writes little things in there: quotes she finds randomly, things people say, things people tell her, and just her own thoughts. It's not a diary. It's not a goddamn diary.

'You should let me read that,' commented Opie.

They were enjoying a quiet time in the countryside: Jackie writing in her book and Opie trying to distract her. He played with her hair, twirling and tangling it in between his fingers.

Jackie scoffed. 'As if, Ope.'

The book was there for her and only her. This is something she gets to do for herself, something nobody can ever take away from her. She does what others tell her. She does her duty, she becomes an old lady, she is the perfect daughter, but this is just for her. Nobody is going to take this one thing away from her.

Opie proposes to her three years later after constant badgering from Gemma. Gemma's heart is in the right place, though Jackie questions that many times. She wants the best for her daughter and wants a Son to protect her. Gemma wants Jackie to be the next Charming Queen, though Jackie is sure she wants the opposite.

(Right? She doesn't want to be the next Queen bee. She doesn't. She doesn't…. right?)

Jackie says yes because that's what's expected of her. She lets her mother plan the wedding, pick the dress and pick the place.

'Jackie, come here, sweetheart,' Gemma calls her to the dining table.

Jackie sits beside her mother and takes the tea that was offered to her with a small smile. Gemma looks at Jackie for a moment and she does all her best not to squirm in her seat. Jackie loves her mother, she does, but Gemma's gaze is the only thing in the world that makes her feel uneasy. It's cold and calculating and Jackie doesn't want to turn out like her.

'I'm very proud of you,' Gemma began, her hand reaching out and touching Jackie's. She squeezes Jackie's hand for a moment before taking something out from her pockets. 'You getting married to Opie is a great thing. Teller and Winston. Makes sense for everybody. I see the way he looks at you and the way you act around him. You can't fake shit like that.'

She then placed the object on the table in front of Jackie. Rings, two rings.

'These were mine and John's,' said Gemma. 'Ope probably bought one for the two of you, but these are better. John picked them out just before we got married. I'd rather you wear the rings your father picked out than Opie. More meaning, more sentiment and all that crap.' She then sighed. 'This way, it seems as though you're father's there in spirit.'

Jackie smiles at the sentiment, but couldn't get those words out of her head. I'm very proud of you. Not happy for her daughter, but proud that Jackie was doing her duty.

If Jackie is one thing, she's a good girl and she knows her duty.

The wedding is held in on a reservation with different members from different carters coming down for the special event. Jury comes down and Jackie rushes into his arm, squeezing him as he laughs.

'It's good to see you, Jax,' said Jury. Jax… she'll always be Jax to him rather than Jackie. She loves the name and nobody else calls her that – it's only for Jury.

'It's good to see you too, Uncle Jury,' Jackie says sweetly to him. Sweet is what people only see from her, and she comes to accept it.

'I can't believe it's finally happening,' said Jury. 'A Teller and a Winston together. It's about damn time.'

Jackie's smile doesn't flatter; she learns how to control her emotions. She nods her head and gives his cheek a kiss before going to where her mother directs her. Clay is already there, waiting for her with a big smile. She wraps her arm around his and tries not to cringe. They begin to walk down the aisle together. Stepfather and stepdaughter.

Three things are going through her mind as they inch closer and closer towards the minister and Opie. One: she doesn't have a bridesmaid. Tara won't come back to Charming, even for Jackie's wedding. Two: John Teller should be walking her down the aisle. Tommy should be standing beside Opie. Three: She doesn't want to get married.

(I don't want this… I don't want this… I don't want this…)

This is not the life she wants. She doesn't want to be standing there next to Opie in front of a minister. A Teller and Winston coming together in holy matrimony is something every charter thinks of at one moment or another, but it's something she doesn't want.

But she does what's expected of her and she does it with a smile that could rival Gemma's. A smile that doesn't give anything away and keeps the boy's mind at ease.

'Brothers and sisters, we come together today under the all-seeing eye of nature to witness the blessed joining of Harry Kenneth Winston and Jacqueline Natalia Teller. You're both here of your own free will, intent on marriage?'

Jackie wonders when lying comes easy to her, how the words flow easily out of her mouth, not even taking her by surprise anymore.

'Yes,' Jackie and Opie say together.

'I'd like to share with you a blessing of the Apache. Now you feel no rain, for each of you will be shelter for the other. Now you feel no cold, for you will always be warmth for each other. Now you feel no loneliness, for you will always be each other's companion. Now you are two persons, with only one life before you. May beauty and peace surround you both in your journey ahead and though all the years to come.'

'With this ring,' Jacqueline began, putting John Teller's wedding ring on Opie's finger, 'I vow my love. I promise to always be a faithful and loving wife… and old lady.'

'With this ring,' said Opie as Gemma Teller's old ring was now on Jackie's finger, 'I vow my love. And I promise to always cherish and protect you… And treat you as good as my leather and…' He paused as everybody else joined in, 'Ride you as much as my Harley!'

Everyone cheered, whooped, applauded and laughed.

'By the power invested in my by the laws of the Wahewa and the State of California, I pronounce you man and wife. Have at it.'

Everyone continued to cheer and applaud as Jackie and Opie Winston kissed.

After the party and after their first night (Jackie scoffs at that idea), she watches him in the night. He's still and silent as his chest moves up and down steadily. He looks peaceful as his palm rests easily on Jackie's abdomen.

She loves him, she knows she does, and in another life, she would have happily agreed to marry him without a second thought, without the MC breathing down on her neck to say 'yes'.

But Opie is kind and patient with her and he treats her well. He loves her, but she doesn't love him as much as he does.

Jackie feels happy with the house and the picket fences. Normal domestic life works for her. She paints the house, picks out the furniture, and adds her own touch to it. Opie nods when necessary and she kisses his cheek when necessary.

She has a paint easel in the corner of the living room, though she can't paint to save her life. Opie jokingly makes fun of her works as she sits on his lap and he cresses her legs. They sometimes paint together, though Opie would rather kiss her neck.

She finds these times calming. Strokes on the canvas, colours mixed together in harmony, the peace… Only in their house, Jackie loves the married life. Everything is quiet and peaceful. They are not under the eyes of SAMCRO. They are not expected to act perfect. Behind closed doors, they act like idiots in love.

Kyle Hobart was someone who didn't deserve the patch. He didn't deserve the Reaper tattoo on his back. He didn't deserve to call himself a Son.

Jackie watches him, her blue eyes hard and cold. When she sees people like this in the club her father built, she wishes she was born with a cock. If she was a boy, she would kick Kyle Hobart out the moment he stepped foot inside the clubhouse. He was weak and he just wanted pussy, despite having a caring wife and two kids that look up to him.

He wasn't loyal to the club, if not he wouldn't have abandoned Opie during their arson. He was supposed to be in the getaway car. Once he heard the sirens, he spilt and Opie landed in county for five years.

Jackie is present when Clay strips away his patches and she is there as he cries, begging for their forgiveness. He looks desperately at Clay, at Tig, Chibs, Bobby, Piney, Gemma and finally Jacqueline. She glares at him and he turns away, realizing he was fighting a losing battle.

Kyle Hobart has two weeks to pack up what little he has left and leave Charming. Within that two weeks, Jackie finds out she's pregnant.

She isn't ready for this. Opie is gone, locked up away in Stockton, and she's alone. Gemma will be there, yes, but she's only a grandmother, nothing more. The club will help out, but they are not the child's father.

But Jacqueline Teller wants this baby. She'll make it work, with or without Opie.

Jackie goes through the storage, trying to find some of Tommy's old toys and crib. She goes through boxes and pictures. She smiles at the one with John Teller holding her and tucks it away in her pocket, along with her and baby Tommy. She laughs at her parent's wedding picture, can't believe the hair her mother had.

She then finds a box marked: John Misc. and opens it. Pictures and a bunch of random things she didn't have time to go over, but there was something that peaks her interest: a black binder with a stack of papers.

The Life and Death of SAM CRO.

How the Sons of Anarchy Lost Their Way.

By John Thomas Teller.

Jackie then flipped to the next page.

For my son, Thomas, who's already at peace, and for my daughter, Jacqueline, may she never know this life of chaos.

Jackie's eyes blink a couple times at the words. She's about to turn the page, eager and ready to read the words her father wrote years ago –

'Hey, did you find anything?' Gemma asked, walking into the view of the storage unit.

Jackie jumps a little and stuffs the manuscript back into the box hastily. She turns to her mother and shrugs, though her heart is racing.

'Just some shitty toys,' said Jackie. 'Nothing much here, though I did find something interesting…'

She then takes out the picture of Gemma on her wedding day and laughs. Gemma look a little outraged, though it's all fake.

'Oh, shut up, asshole,' said Gemma, rolling her eyes and she takes the picture in her own eyes. A wistful look overcomes her face. 'I was hot.'

'Smokin',' said Jackie. 'But that hair looks like shit, ma.'

Gemma lightly punches her arm and walks away, tucking the picture in her back pocket. Jackie sighs, relaxing. She managed to distract her mother for the time being, but couldn't sneak the manuscript out of the house. Jackie looks back at the box, a box full of John Teller's secrets and promises herself that she would come back for it, that her father's words would not die in some storage unit.

Jackie gives birth to their son and she laughs when the doctor announces that it was a boy, but her laughs slowly die as the doctor announces that the baby will have to get some sort of checkup. The words were blurred in her head. She didn't need some sort of doctor telling her what it was or how they should be optimistic. It was the god damn family curse all over again, the same one that took Tommy away from her.

For weeks, she had to watch her son though the toaster, watching his small body breathe with difficulty. Gemma blamed herself, Piney blamed the doctors and Jackie didn't give a fuck about both of them. She watched her son fight to survive for weeks. She watched the doctor look surprise day after day at his strength.

Jackie smirks. Her son is already pissing off his doctors. He truly is his mother's son.

It takes weeks and sleepless nights until she is finally able to hold him. The doctor places him in her arms and she lets go. She cries for the first time in years. She didn't cry when Tommy died, and she didn't shed a tear with John Teller was hit by the semi. She kept a straight face when Gemma married Clay Morrow and only closed her eyes when Opie was sentenced.

But holding her son, her little baby with her blue eyes and wisps of blond hair, released every emotion inside of her. She cried of happiness, of sadness, of excitement and of sorrow. She cried for the son she was holding, for the brother she lost, for the father she lost, for the mother who loved another man more than her, and for the husband that should be here.

She cried and laughed as she looked at her son. She then kissed his forehead.

'I don't know how to break this to you, little man, but I'm your mama. Sorry about that.'

Gemma is in the room, crying and laughing, but Jackie ignores her. She wants to spend one day where Gemma is not the center of attention.

No, her son is. She holds him close; trace his features and just watching him. She doesn't give him up when Gemma insists on seeing him or when the guys come over to see the newest member of SAMCRO. She allows them to place the blue beanie on top of his head, but that's it. He is her son, not the club's.

Jackie brings the baby on her next visit up to Stockton. She waits patiently as the guards bring Opie in.

He limps slightly, but quickens up when he sees Jackie waiting there for him. Before saying anything to her, he gives her a big kiss. Her feet are lifted slightly off the ground as she wraps her arm around his neck.

Jackie squeals for a second before relaxing into the kiss. She never really thought that she would miss these kisses until Opie was behind bars. His lips, his arms around her waist and his beard tickling her neck…

'I've missed you,' Opie whispered.

'I've missed you too,' said Jackie. And she meant it. She missed Opie. She missed having him in the house and in the bed next to her.

Her feet are then placed back down on the floor and they sit next to each other. Jackie lifts her son – no, their son from the carrier and Opie takes him carefully, almost fearfully, into his arms. He makes a small noise before falling into contempt. He knows he is in safe hands with Opie, with his father.

'His name is Abel,' Jackie whispered, looking directly at Opie, watching his every move. 'Abel Teller Winston.'

Opie smiles, though he only has eyes for his son. 'He's beautiful,' he whispers. He then looks up at Jackie. 'I promise I'll never miss anything like this again... I'm… I'm so sorry.'

Jackie smiles at him and for a brief moment, her heart flutters. The look on his face and the sincerity in his voice makes her love him even more than before. And she believe him, for a brief moment, she believes him. That belief and that love is going to kill her one day.

Not sure if I should continue or leave it like this yet...

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