The limousine pulled up to the same place that he’d bought for Addison just after Death Ever After made it big. He walked into the huge entry way dropping his bags to the floor and sighed looking at all the new decor that he put in four years ago after destroying the inside of his house. After Addie had her baby, he ripped everything off the wall, threw it into a pile on the furniture in the middle of the front room, and burned it all.
There was nothing left. Anything that had reminded him of his baby girl, or anything that they had bought together, he destroyed in his drunken rage. But now he wondered that if they started talking again and she happened to see their old place, what would she think about everything being gone?
He had just taken a shower and was making himself a sandwich when he heard Nickels calling his name. Soon he walked into the kitchen with a grin on his face and a envelope in his hands. “Hey, Maria let me in. She said you let all the staff go home early today.” Nickels asked going to the fridge to grab a water and then took a seat at the counter.
“I’m tired, and hungry.” He stated putting some chips on his plate. “Besides, the A’s are playing the Red Sox’s tonight. I thought it would be nice to just relax.” He told Nickels pulling out a soda and started to eat.
“So, Dax said he had a chat with you about Addie.”
“Yeah, he did.”
“You didn’t say anything on the way home about it.” Nickels pushed.
“Well that’s because I didn’t want to talk about it with you guys.” He answered.
“Hey, can I ask you a question?”
“Does it matter if I say no?” He chuckled.
“No, not really.” Nickels grinned. “Do you want to see Addie, I mean really? Over the years we’ve all known who the music was for, and about, but… what do you really think about seeing her again?”
Jimmy put the sandwich down and shook his head. “You know, this has been something I’ve been dreaming about for years now, but…”
“I don’t want her to see me and hate my ass man. I mean, it was one thing to be fucked up dealing with the rejection, but stone cold sober… that would be rough.” He sighed.
Nickels grabbed a handful of chips nodding as he ate. “She might not want to see you again, I don’t think that’s the case, but hell, anything’s possible. She might just want to be friends, or you might end up having her falling for your ass, and you might want her back. Nobody knows anything for sure. But one thing for sure when it comes to the girls, they love us and we’re a family. It’s up to you if you’re willing to see what happens next.” He said putting the envelope on the counter and pushing it to him.
“You’re such an ass. You didn’t even want to give me a day?” He chuckled reaching out to the damn thing looking at it. There was no name on it, just a typical cheap ass white envelope, that was staring back at him. There was a part of him that didn’t want to see what this guy had to say. Addie’s new husband had seen him at his worst. “Do you know what it says inside?” He finally asked.
“I think I have an idea, but that’s all. Jones told me that him, Howie, and Dax had a long talk with Win only a couple weeks before he passed. He was asking how you were doing, were you still clean, and how he thought you’d be with kids. You know, that kinda thing.” Nickels shrugged.
“And how did that go for them?” He growled.
“They thought it went pretty damn good considering the circumstances of all the shit that’s happened, and that was going on.” He confessed, then chuckled. “I got to tell you, Addie is the hottest doctor out there man. Win was one lucky bastard.”
“Yeah, thanks for that tid bit of fucking information man. It helps me out a lot!” He growled again.
“Well, are you going to read it, or just stare at it all day?”
“I’m going to read it.” He sighed starting to open the letter.
“Do you want me to go, or stay?” Nickels asked.
“It doesn’t matter.” Jimmy said picking it up from the counter but stopped. “Hey, why are you even here? Shouldn’t you be with Lynn?” He asked stalling.
“You think I could go home if I didn’t deliver you this letter, and have your ass on the plane with me back to Nashville… do you know my wife at all?” Nickels chuckled, but then frowned. “Besides, she’s got her hands full with Addie right now. I guess she’s not doing so well since she just found your box of letters to her.”
“Damn, I thought you knew that.” Nickels sighed. “Well, Win hid all the letters that you wrote her. At first, we thought it was just from when you were in rehab. But there was more to it than that, wasn’t there?”
“So, Addie has been reading my letters to her from over the years?” He answered not wanting to admit to the question.
“Yeah, she has. Now read the damn letter Win wrote you and see what it says. No more stalling, I’m leaving in thirty minutes for Nashville and I need to know if your coming with me or not.” Nickels told him.
He ripped open the envelope and took out the letter but couldn’t read just yet. “You really don’t know what’s in it?” He asked.
Nickels frowned and sighed sitting back in the chair. “Well, there’s only two ways it can go if you ask me. But we’re all hoping for the best.”
“Yeah…” He murmured seeing what all this was all about.
This is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life. But let me just tell you straight up now, I’m not sorry I took her away from you, and I don’t feel sorry for you either, you deserved everything you got. At the time you hurt my angel, and I just wanted you gone from her life and the hell out of ours. And if the circumstances were different, I would never even have thought of giving you this opportunity I’m giving you now. Because that woman would’ve been mine forever! But I see the woman I love falling apart in front of me, and I’m not even gone yet.
But I’ve learned the hard way that things change, people change, and circumstances change, and now here I am. Over the years that Addison and I have been married, I’ve become friends with the guys I thought at one time were assholes for not sticking up for her and protecting her from you. But now I know that was wrong, and they’ve become some of my best friends. Rather ironic isn’t it?
The reason I’m telling you all this is because of them, what they’ve told me, and why I’m considering what I’m about to suggest to you. Dax has told me so many times now that you’re better, that you don’t drink anymore, and that you haven’t picked up a drink in years. Also, that you’re free from the drugs, and that you’ve realized what you did when you slept with those women and broke my angel’s heart so many years ago. All I have is what they tell me, and your songs, and yes, I’ve heard them all.
For years I’ve had to listen to every song you wrote, knowing who you were writing them for, and to be honest, it pissed me off. The lost love, or the pain in your heart, and the latest I heard from the band, not being able to live without you, or I how you can’t move on. Dax once told me when Addison and me first got married that it would be hard for me to hear you sing about her, and he was right. It’s the hardest damn thing ever to know some guy wants what is yours. But if they’ve given you this letter, then my angel must be falling apart, and as much as I don’t think you deserve her, or another chance with her, I think you can help her heal and move on. But there’s more to it than that, we have two little boys together, and they are her world.
If your heart ever felt like mine does right now knowing that another man wants to take away what you love so completely, and touch and love what belongs to you… then maybe you’ll understand how hard this could be for me at this moment. I love that woman more than my own life, and I love my boys that she gave to me just as strongly. So, I guess the last question is, are you man enough to love her and our boys and make them happy?
Tia once told me when I was really sick, and I was mad at myself for taking Addison away from her job at the hospital, that Addison would quit being a doctor completely if it meant she’d have me forever. She said Addison had only loved two men in her life, and she chose me. But deep down I always knew you still had a piece of her heart that I couldn’t touch, and I was okay with that, because I’m the one who had her in my arms every night. But now I’m not going to be there for her anymore, and this is your opportunity to make up to Addison all the pain and loss you gave her all those years ago.
If you think you can handle what happened between the two of you and make it right, then go help our girl heal, that is, if you’re willing to. Go make her happy, go help her find love again, and please treat her like you did before you were the rock god. Dax told me stories of how good you were to her, and that’s what my angel needs right now.
Addison needs so little when it comes to material things, but she requires so much affection, so much love. If you give her that, that’s all you need to win her heart again, I’m sure of it.
His hand went to the counter with the letter still in his fist as he thought about what he just read. “Well, what did he say?” Nickels asked.
He didn’t answer, instead just took a stool to sit down and read it again. When he was done, he shook his head at his fucking luck, and glanced up at Nic. “I think he wants me to see if Addison will take me back” He answered, having it sound strange to say to his own ears.
Nickels grinned getting up from his seat. “Yeah, that’s what Dax thought he was going to say. But you never know what someone is thinking at a time like that in their lives. So, what are your thoughts on going to see Addie again? It’s been six years, and she does have two boys now…do you want to stay away from her, or do you want to go out and see her?”
His hands ran through his hair looking at the paper in front of him and racking his brains on what he should do. “Damn it, you know what I want to do!” He growled but then sighed. “Do you think it’s okay for me to go and see her? I mean if I just show up at her place, I don’t want to upset her or anything.”
Nickels walked over and placed his hand on his shoulder. “If Win thought it was a good idea for you to go see her, then why would you question it?” He explained, but Jimmy didn’t answer. “Look, if this was the other way around and you wrote that letter to Win, would you want him just sitting his ass on a damn stool knowing you just wrote the toughest thing that you ever had to in your life?” He asked. “I mean shit, the man just gave you permission to win back the love of his life!”
“Yeah, I guess you’re right, and damn it, I want to go see her. But I’m afraid that when I see her again, I’ll want more than I should.” He confessed getting up and started to make his way to the master suite.
“Hey, you’re coming with me, right?” Nickels shouted.
“Of course I am, just give me a sec to get a couple things together.” He yelled back.
He walked up to his bedroom getting one of his old jackets then passed by the nightstand to get his watch, when he stopped staring at the top drawer. It was the drawer he hadn’t opened in years because of what was in it. But today he walked over and pulled out the wedding photo of him and Addison, and saw her smiling face.
He was holding her in his arms at some chapel that they had drove to in Vegas so they could get married. She was just seventeen years old, and he was nineteen. Mary had finally relented to give the two of them permission to go get married after she knew she wasn’t going to change his or Addison’s mind. They left that night and spent two weeks being together before him and the guys music career started to take off.
They were so young, and he loved her like a possessed man. She was in a little white dress with a daisy behind her ear, and he wore a pair of jeans and a black shirt he’d borrowed from Dax.
Their wedding rings were cheap thin bands of 10k gold, but it was all they could afford. He could still remember telling Addison that one day she would have a rock on that finger of hers, but she just smiled and told him that all she’d ever wear was the gold band they had bought together, and that what’s she did. Even when he bought her a five-carat diamond for our fifth-year anniversary, she told him that she loved it, but still wore the simple gold band That should have told him that his baby girl only wanted him… he was a stupid fool for thinking differently.
He looked down at his ring finger and remembered telling Addison that he didn’t want some ring, but something permanent. Then right after they said their vows, they went to a tattoo parlor on the strip, and that day is the day when he got his first tattoo. It was a wedding ring of their wedding date, her initials, A. P. R and the word forever tattooed on his ring finger… and it was still there.
After all his mistakes, the drinking, the drugs, hurting Addison, he started having some of the tattoos removed from his neck and hands from those times in his life, but he could never touch that first tattoo. Howie even suggested at one point that it might help him move on from his past, and Addison, but he couldn’t because deep down he knew that the memory of what he had, and lost, would keep him on the straight and narrow path.
His bags were still packed by the door down stairs, so he put the photo down on the nightstand, leaving his room and making his way back down to his bags and Nickles.
Whatever was to happen when he saw Addison again, he was going to make sure she knew that it wasn’t the same man she had left behind. The fame made him into his worst nightmare, the loss of the love of his life made him be the man he was now. All he could do was hope and pray that she could find it in her heart to forgive him for what he’d done… and maybe let him love her once again.