Colliding Hearts

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Chapter 24 | I Am Fine


Standing in the middle of the tuxedo shop as the old man pokes and prods at me with needles as he takes measurements of the suit I’m wearing isn’t how I envisioned spending my day off from football. Yet here I am. Coach has worked us extremely hard since returning from Thanksgiving break, two weeks ago. Knowing we all eat a lot over the break and don’t spend every day in the gym or doing rigorous training like we do at practice. The rest of them, my brother, dad, brother’s groomsmen all stand around in their suits while the twins run around.

“What’s wrong with you?” Liam questions, noticing my stiffness every time the man tells me to move.

“Coach has been brutal at training. This is the first day we’ve had off in a week which I’m spending here instead of in bed or a fucking ice bath. Tell Emery thanks for that,” I sigh, rolling my shoulders back.

“You tell her. She’s all bridezilla at the moment, stressing out about this wedding. So if you want to go tell her this doesn’t suit your schedule, have at it,” Liam scoffs, pulling down his cuffs. “I am not pissing her off.”

“Never thought I’d see the day when Liam Jackson feared someone,” One of Liam’s best friends Hunter smirks, knowing he is riling Liam up.

“I’m fucking terrified of her. Most innocent looking person you’d ever meet, but you do not want to piss her off. I blame Liam, she was all sweet and innocent when we first met her, he’s corrupted her,” Nathan, his other best friend, shivers in terror as he speaks about Emery.

Liam scoffs, rolling his eyes. “Fuck off.”

“So little Jackson, Liam here tells us you got yourself a girlfriend? The celibacy streak is over,” Nathan sings, and I roll my eyes.

“First, I’m not celibate, I’m just focused. Second, she’s a friend I brought to Thanksgiving because she lives in New York and couldn’t get home,” I explain, getting off the pedestal as the tailor finishes my measurements.

“Maybe we should meet her, decide if she’s the right fit for little Jackson,” Hunter slings his arm over my shoulder and messes up my hair.

“You’ll scare her off.”

“Nah, you’re worried she’ll see us and ditch you,” Nathan brushes imaginary dust off his shoulder. “I wouldn’t blame her. I’m awesome.”

“Says who? The countless girls that run the other way when they see you?” I joke and everyone laughs.

“Us Jackson’s have this undeniably charm. You couldn’t compete, Nathan,” Dad explains.

“I may not have the Jackson charm, but I’m charming. I’ve been told,” Nathan points.

“Yeah, by your mom,” Hunter scoffs, making us all laugh. “That doesn’t count man.”

“Does to me,” Nathan grumbles, shoving Hunter away, making us laugh.

“The twins next,” The tailor says, and we look over to the twins seeing them play fighting with ties.

“Good luck with that,” I chuckle, knowing there is no way they will stand still for a long period of time, or any period of time for that matter.

“Alex, stop messing around and do what the man tells you to do,” Dad commands and Alex sighs before doing as told, although he’s fidgety. “I blame your mother for this. She didn’t want to stop until she had a girl. I’m glad Luna came after the twins. Any more kids and I would have had a heart attack.”

Finishing up the suit appointment and getting the twins out before the tailor murdered them. My phone rings as soon as we step outside.

“Hey Ava, what’s up?” I ask, answering the phone, and the guys make kissy faces at me as I throw something at them.

“Noah, it’s Hannah. Ava’s been in a car accident.”

Running through the doors of the hospital, I dodge around the patients, doctors and nurses that cover the emergency room as I head to the receptionist desk.

“Avalon Miller.”

She looks through the computer before giving me the room number and telling me which way to go, before I rush off. Making my way through the hospital, and up the slow ass elevator I look at the room numbers before finding Ava’s and heading inside seeing the girls and Nick already there. Everyone’s heads snap up when I walk inside and Ava groans.

“You didn’t need to call Noah, or everyone for that matter. I’m perfectly fine.” Ava stresses. My eyes flicker over her body checking for injuries, as she is lied in the hospital bed. Hannah reassured it was a minor crash. Someone hit the front end, and she spun, but she still needed to be checked out.

“I’m sorry that I care about my best friend.” Hannah throws her arms up into the air. “Years of friendship and this is the thanks I get. I called your dad to let him know, and he wants you to ring him later.”

Ava sighs, “He’s going to be worried until I call him.”

“What happened?” I ask, walking around to the side of the bed moving her hair away from her forehead seeing a slight cut that has some tape on it and a bandage on her wrist.

“I was driving to campus and someone ran a red light and crashed into the hood of the car. The police came earlier to take a statement,” She explains, and I nod my head, glad they are going to sort it out.

“Are you okay?” I question and she nods her head. “Good.”

“Is she okay?” Dylan shouts, running into the room. “My baby!” He launches himself at Ava hugging her, making her all laugh and I pet his shoulder as a way of saying get off, so she won’t get hurt.

“I’m fine you didn’t have to come.”

“I told you, we’re family now. We look out for each other,” Aiden pats her leg, and she smiles.

“Hey guys,” Emery walks into the room in her scrubs, holding a chart in her hand.

“Hey Em, how is she?” I ask, and Ava rolls her eyes at my concern.

“Aside from the minor cut, she has a bruised wrist from hitting it on the steering wheel on impact. You need to ice it occasionally. Ten minutes on and ten minutes off. It will heal up soon.” Emery explains as we all nod our heads, listening intently. “Anyway, Avalon, you are free to leave, just sign out at the nurse’s station before you leave. If you start to feel unwell in any way it might be better to come back so we can make sure it’s not a reaction from the accident.”

“Thanks Emery,” Ava smiles, before Emery waves goodbye and continues with her other patients.

“Come on, let’s get you out of here,” Sierra says and Ava stands up as we grab her things for her and I wrap my arm around Ava’s shoulders.

“You gave me a heart attack,” I tell her, kissing her head. “I was worried when Hannah told me you got into an accident, I’m glad you’re ok.”

“Nice to know you care about me,” She cuddles into my side. “I’m ok, but my car isn’t.”

“How bad is it?” Liv questions, as Ava signs out and we head out of the hospital.

“The side of the hood is smashed and some debris smashed the windshield. Insurance will take care of it, and hopefully it will be fixed for when I get back from New York.”

“I can take you to the airport, if you need,” I offer, knowing her flight is in two days and she was going to drive there. She smiles thankfully at me.

“Can we stop for food on the way back? I’m hungry,” Dylan states, rubbing his stomach.

“So, nothing out of the ordinary then,” Hannah says, making us all laugh before we get into our cars.

“I am fine.”

Ava repeats again as we head into the apartment. Me carrying her things, while Hannah walks beside her. Both of us are probably too protective since it’s a minor accident.

“We know that, but even the nurse said when you signed out to just take it easy,” Hannah walks her over to the couch and Ava sits down as I put her things down.

“Take it easy, not baby a grown woman who is fine!” Ava huffs, crossing her arms.

“Grown woman, huh?” I smirk, referring to her reaction, and she rolls her eyes.

“I’m going to make you some chamomile tea. No coffee,” Hannah tells Ava before walking off to the kitchen, and I chuckle before sitting down next to Ava.

“She’s like a mother hen,” Ava shakes her head.

“It will pass, even minor accidents are still scary for people,” I squeeze her knee and she nods her head.

“Thank you for bringing us back,” Ava thanks me and I smile. “And offering to take me to the airport.”

“It’s no problem, I actually like your company believe it or not,” I say, and she laughs, before Hannah comes back and brings her the tea. “Never thought I’d see the day.”

“It won’t happen again,” Ava takes the tea off Hannah, thanking her.

“I’m going to head off, I need to catch up on sleep since coach has been riding our asses,” I stand up and Ava smirks, knowing exactly how bad coach has been.

“No worries, I understand. Coach has killed you all. Thank you for everything,” Ava smiles and I lean down to kiss her cheek before throwing a wave to Hannah and heading out.

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