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Chapter 24 - Gregory

I haven’t even met Taylor’s mother but I feel angry enough to wring her neck! I mean even my drug addicted mother was around for the suffocating hug when she was as high as a kite after my dad used me as a punching bag. But I had seen the look on his face when he said she wasn’t at the funeral and that hurt him the most. He still loves his mother, but that action of not showing up at the funeral left a deep scar on his heart and soul.

My poor baby. I softly run my hand through Tay’s hair as his breath puffs out of his slightly open mouth. He grumbles a little as he shifts his weight closer to mine is his fitful sleep. “I am going to take care of you Tay, don’t you worry.” I kiss his forehead before cuddling closer to Tay’s heat under the covers and burrow my nose in his hair. When I reopen my eyes, I see Tay’s curled around Syl. When did he get here? I can’t help but smile as I push the covers back, getting up.

“Morning.” I smother a yawn as I walk down the stairs. Dad looks up from his pots on the stove. “Can I take some upstairs? Tay is still asleep.” I frown as I see Lo sit on the floor all sad and rejected. “What is it Lo? What’s wrong?” He turns to me and I see he is trying very hard to keep his tears at bay.

“Syl left.” He sniffles, inhales the bogus dripping out of his nose and wipes his nose for good measure. “Without saying goodbye or eating breakfast. I thought he was my friend.” Now he started wailing as he throws himself at me.

“He didn’t leave you Lo; he is my bed sound asleep with Tay.” Lo is up and out of the room just as I manage to finish the sentence. A chuckle makes me turn on my heel and bounce a little backwards because my chest collides with a heavy laden tray. Courtesy of dad’s cooking now we have two more mouths to feed.

“Take this upstairs, I am pretty sure Lo woke the sleeping beauties up.” Dad ruffles my hair making me roll my eyes as I gladly accept the tray. Dad had added a plate for me and Lo. Sadly, my balance isn’t the best as I rattle hard enough to wake Nance out of her beauty sleep and she glares at me as I walk past her room.

Tay’s eyes soften as he sees me standing on the threshold with a tray; Lo and Syl are sprawled all over the room that I had left behind. “What is our plan for today?” I sit down next to Tay as he starts handing out plates and lifting lids of little pots. I wasn’t really keen on leaving my room for it was very cold out, but Tay’s deep sigh told me he has something planned. And I have to brave the cold anyway since I have trainning later.

“I think I am going to go home and talk to mom. I am pretty sure both she and Gordo said things they didn’t mean. And that way I hope to figure out what she meant with taking me and Syl back home to Italy.”

My mouth drops; he didn’t say that on the phone to dad last night. By the way Lo and Syl reacted they hadn’t known either. Both boys looked like scared little bunnies that smell a fox but can’t see it. They cling to the other tightly as they continue to stare at Tay with big wide eyes.

“You’re leaving?!” I can’t help but screech at the end of my sentence; I didn’t want him to leave. Lo didn’t want Syl to leave either, he got this very determined look on his face. Tay shakes his head as he cups my face, drawing me closer to his face despite my best efforts.

“I am not going anywhere Il mio cuore {my heart}. I am not planning to leave your side.” He looks a little sad as he continues “I am pretty sure mom only wants me and Syl to back to Italy so she can get access to papà’s millions.” Syl tears up and Lo slowly rubs little circles on his back. He smiles as he tugs me close, “I will leave Syl here, I am just going to see how things are and get a few changes of clothes for us. Your dad invited us to stay for as long as mom is in town.” He glances back at Syl “I think I will take your dad up on his offer.”

The rest of breakfast was spend in slight silence. Nance came around later and lured the boys downstairs with the promise of movies and popcorn. Leaning against the headboard I watch Tay worriedly as he jerkily pulls on some clean clothes. “I still don’t feel comfortable with you going home right now.” I say it to fill the heavy silence. Tay faces me and sits down beside me on the bed as he tugs on his shoes. He presses his head against mine, whispering that he will be back soon. My arms wrap around his shoulders as he kisses me, I am very unwilling to let go of him. His slightly rough fingertips slide over my skin as he traces random patterns on it.

“I will be back soon Il mio cuore {my heart}.” He lifts my hand to his lips “I promise.” With those words he sadly walks out of the front door. I can’t help but worry the rest of the day. At practice I was hopeless; I couldn’t even get the easiest balls. So it wasn’t much of a surprise to me that the coach pulled me to the side. “What is on your mind Chambers? Is it a family matter?” He coach was up to date with my whole family situation. I shake my head, it wasn’t a real family matter, it was more a boyfriend matter.

“It’s more a boyfriend matter coach; it is Tay’s mother I am worried about. She is back in town and she has been saying that she is going to take both him and his younger brother Sylvester back to Italy.” I twist the ball in my hands, “I don’t want him or Syl leave.” Coach only raises an eyebrow at the boyfriend thing but it turned into a frown when he hears that Tay might return to Italy without him or the board knowing. “I just can wrap my head around the fact Tay said the only reason she wants them there is so that she can get her grubby hands on the inheritance.”

The coach squeezed the back of my neck in reassurance. “Have faith in your man Chambers, I am pretty sure he wouldn’t let you go without a fight.” My heart was a little lighter and was more focused on the practice after coach’s words.

“Are you going to be okay Greg?” Joey was looking at me concerned as he was waiting on me to walk me to my car. “You can talk to me you know? I am your friend.” He wrapped his arm around my shoulder as we walked to my car.

“It’s just that don’t want them to leave.” I groan as I drop my bag in the booth, leaning against it.

“I know for sure Taylor doesn’t want to leave either.” I huffed, thinking that he was just saying that because I wanted to hear it. “The fact he is glaring at me like he wants the kill me says more than enough.” He grins as he backs off a little and I see Tay’s stormy face as he comes stomping my way.

“What did your mom say?” I mumble into his shirt as he squeezes me tightly to his chest. The slight tremor is my answer; I think he is trembling in anger if his face is anything to go by. “Whatever it is, it’s going to be okay.” I breathe in his relaxing scent as I rub my nose along his collarbone. “I am not letting you go without fight.”

“Let’s go home.” Tay says although he doesn’t make a move to let go of me or getting into the car. My heart skips a beat at those words let’s go home; I squeeze him closer before handing over the car keys. It feels like the most natural thing in the world to let Tay drive and I smile as his hand claps mine during the drive. When we arrive at the house, I see a flash of the future as Tay gets out and comes over to my side to open the door for me. I see kids darting around the drive and Tay smiling and dad too as he stands on the threshold looking at us. “Greg? Are you okay?” I blink and its gone, as my eyes focus, Tay’s worried face comes into focus.

“Yeah, I am good.” Rubbing my eyes, I can’t seem to let the image go. “Just a little tired I guess.” Tay smiles charmingly as he hugs me to his side, kissing my temple as he murmurs sweet nothings in my ear. Grabbing my bag from the booth we make our way into the house. I blink in surprise as there are more than just my practice bag in the hall as Tay helps me out of my coat. I guess the others are his and Syl’s clean clothes.

“Fratello!” Syl’s shout has the both of us look in his direction and see dad stand there in the living room looking worried. Syl launches himself across the floor into Tay’s waiting arms. “I don’t want to go back there while she is there fratello. She scares me. I don’t like her.” I don’t need to look at Tay to see the anger on his face, I feel it radiate from him in waves. Something must have happened and it involved his mother and Syl.

“What did she do?” Tay places Syl on his hip as he all but growls out the words. He rocks him slightly from side to side. Dad says nothing, he simply steps aside and sitting at our kitchen table is a well groomed busty blonde. The shape of her eyes resembles Tay’s and Syl’s, her light complexion is the same as theirs too. So this is their gold digging mother. I think to myself as she gets up from the chair with the grace of a Royal. Her face falls a little as she reaches out to Syl but he turns away from her.

“You must be Gregory; I have heard many things about you.” Her voice is soft but her use of Tay’s name makes me thing she doesn’t really know much about him, or Syl for that matter. I clasp my hand over hers and am surprised by the strength of her pull as she pulls me down to her height so she can kiss my cheeks. So this is how people greet each other in Italy. I can’t help but blush lightly as she lets me go.

“Ciao madre, what brings you here? I thought Gordo said you had business to take care off in Miami?” His mother pouted at his words, telling me they don’t really ever interact as a family. Tay’s glare and tone don’t help; it’s dark and filled with suppressed anger. She kisses his cheeks in greeting and ruffles Syl’s hair since he won’t face her.

“I do, but I thought we should talk before I leave about your padre and nonno.” I grasp his arm as I see him tense. She looks genuine about wanting to talk about his father and grandfather.

“Maybe you should listen to what she has to say Tay.” I don’t flinch as he gives me the death glare that made him famous in our community. “If you don’t you might regret for the rest of your life. Please just listen to what she has to say, that’s all I ask of you. Please Tay.”

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