The Way Home

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Chapter 4

Kane and Marie enjoyed the dinner and got ready for bed. It shocked her at how quickly this turned into something that felt so comfortable. It was weird how her anxiety didn’t over come her, everything with Kane felt… right. They were laying down she was curled into his shoulder and chest while he laid on his back running his fingers through her hair.

“I can’t remember when the last time I felt this content or happy.” He lowly told her. “Me to.” She answered back in the same tone. “Can I ask you a question?” “You can ask me anything Kane.” “Do you feel like I’ve rushed you into any of this?” “What do you mean?” “Well babe we have been sleeping together almost every night since I’ve been home less than a week, and as much as I want this to keep going every night to come in the foreseeable future, I just want to make sure your not feeling any pressure or that I’m rushing you.”

“I can assure you that I am I do not feel any of those things. I actually feel excited and I hope this part doesn’t scare you off, but being around you like this in these ways it feels right. It’s almost like this is right where I am supposed to be.” “I know exactly what you mean. It feels like I’ve waited so long to get here with you. It’s just important to me that I don’t fuck up.” He said with a small chuckle. “I’m scared of the same thing. It does feel like I’ve waited a long time to get here with you, but I also feel proud that I am finally able to get to this point in life with someone I really care about.”

“Can I ask you one more thing?” “Anything.” “You don’t have to answer this question, I’m just curious. I know you haven’t been on a date or dated for over two years now, but I also know that you have had plenty of openings. I guess what I’m tying to ask is what made you take the chance on me and not someone like what’s a good example hypothetically someone like Dylan?”

“OK, I guess I just needed time to adjust I was in a really bad place for so long, as you know. I actually started talking to you a few months before I even met Dylan. It’s hard to explain kind of three are a lot of reasons I guess or maybe just a few reasons that made big differences. Ok since you used Dylan as an example he is a good friend, we do have a lot of in common I guess, but maybe on some level he may remind me of some things I choose to get away from unknowingly. I like Dylan he is a good person you both are, you are also both funny, insanely smart, good with your hands, and have very big hearts. I owe a lot to both of you for being there for me and helping me through the dark phase. When it comes down to it Kane, I don’t feel the same around him as I do around you. I can’t be just friends with you, you give me feelings I never thought I could feel. You help me get a trust back in people I wasn’t sure I could ever reach. If it wasn’t for you, the guys, and mainly Ricki I don’t think I would be here right now, to be honest I’m not even sure I could even be alive.” Marie said sadly.

“I feel so honored you let be the one to get close to you. You have no idea how special you are. You can do anything, you set out to do I just want you to know that, and all your guys are going to always be behind you supporting ya every step of the way especially your man right here on cloud nine just because you talk to me.” They both smiled and cuddled closer. “Goodnight sweetheart.” “Good night babe.” She feel asleep almost immediately, while Kane looked up at the ceiling thanking god, fate and whatever other force that got him to where he is now. He felt more at ease about knowing how she truly felt about Dylan. Thinking about seeing her more in the next coming days made him more excited, he started thinking about the holidays and how they could spend them together. All he really kept thinking about was how he was how he was going to do everything he could to ensure that neither one of them ever return back to the dark place that emotionally held such power over them before fate found them to each other.

Hearing the loud banging noises outside and he was quick to his feet looking for the intruding force. Seeing no danger around them he slide some pants and socks and shoes on forgetting the shirt and made his way out side it was 6a.m and the sun had not fully peaked yet leaving a beautifully grey blue color sky around the town. Opening the door looking for the clanking and banging sound shocked that Marie hasn’t stirred awake yet. Looking to the other side of the yard he looks up to see the source of the problem.

“Man what the hell you trying to do with that thing?” Kane asked. The laughter came before the words and so did the catching of the breathe putting down the heavy equipment. “Man I’m trying to get this crap back into the garage where it originally was until one of my clients had to borrow it to get their body strength back, they couldn’t afford the gym or half the treatment so a couple days a week I went for free and trained them on my own with my own equipment. They all healed now so I’m trying to hurry up and get everything back in there before I gotta get to the office for the first appointment.” Ricki said back starting to feel tired.

“Where did you even come man have you been here all night?” Ricki added. “Ya you woke me up sounding like you were going to battle with the damn block. Marie still sleeping hard, how about I give you a hand so you can still have a some time to get ready you look like you could use a hand this crap looks heavy.” “Man you don’t know the half of it, but that’s be great if you could give me a hand.” They both started grabbing things together using team lifts there really wasn’t that much stuff it was just bulky and heavy. “You said she is still asleep weird, she’s a light sleeper, she’s never done this before she pops awake if she even thinks she might hear a sound. I’m going to go check on her when were done here.” “Sounds good man I’ll make some coffee I’m going to be heading out soon too.

“Are you guys good over here you waking the damn dead Ricki why didn’t you just come get me?” Dylan asked rubbing his head in his pj pants. “I’m sorry man I didn’t think I’d be that loud put your ass to use boy and grab them dumbells.” Ricki said they all laughed. “Alright.” They got done in less than 15 minutes. “Thank you guys I’m sorry for waking you up.”

“Its cool I have to get up and get ready to get back to the farm anyways. Yall want some coffee I swear my girl got the bet damn coffee I’ve had in years.” “That she does you know she gave Ricki and I the same stuff she uses a couple month back as an Easter we both tried, damn not even close.” Ricki laughed. “Ya man Dylan's machine caught on fire. It was funnier than hell for me that was gift that just kept giving." Ricki said tear sliding down his face from laughing so hard. Dylan and Kane laughing at him more than incident.

“Come on y'all I bet she’s up by now she’s not one to sleep this late.” Ricki said. They made their way into the house. Kitchen was still untouched “Huh, I’ll get it going if y'all want to relax for a minute.” Kane said all of them kind of shocked she was still sleep. “Sounds good man thanks. Dylan said. “I don’t know how neither of you are shirtless right now I’m cold as hell.” Ricki said shaking his head. “I didn’t even think about it.” Dylan said looking down to realize how he was dressed.

“All I wanted to do was stop that noise before it woke my angel.” Kane said honestly. Kane and Dylan looked each other silently sizing the other one up. Both had wash boards abs of course Kane was more detailed in his body, but Dylan was something to truly drool over. “What’s wrong?” Ricki said looking at Kane. “It feels like my stomache just dropped, I think I need to check on her.”

The guys looked at each other than to him, not knowing what was going on. You could hear loud cries coming from Marie’s room they all sprinted straight for her. Ricki got there first, Kane than Dylan. Marie wa tossing herself back and forth on the bed, tears rolling down her face begging her dream tormentor to stop and she was sorry. Ricki came to hug her but it made it worse. “Dylan you still got some of those meds?” “No it’s been a few months since I used the ones, I thought the new ones were working.” Dylan said.

“Let me take her. Dylan said reaching out his hands before Kane walked over taking her from Ricki holding her from the back. “It’s ok baby, I’m here. You’re her with me baby girl.” He said as he was rocking with her holding her form behind. Taking his hoodie and draping it over her to where she could inhale his scent. Marie was inhaling the hoodie close to her relaxing into his touch less than four minutes she was calm and collected almost like four minutes before didn’t happen. “That’s a new record, what are you a therapy dog? Are you ok sweetness you want some water?” “NO, I’m ok. I’m so s-s-sorry you guys she said sad tears of embrassment tolled down her face.

“Hey baby it’s ok. Do you want to talk about it?” She shook her head no. “It just hh-h-happens sometimes.” “I know honey, I know. Don’t worry about it just know I got you and your alright. Why don’t you go freshen up and I’ll get the coffee going?” “Sounds good. I really am sorry for scaring any of you. Thank you all for coming for me.” “We’re always her for you Darlin’.” Dylan said with a small sweet smile Ricki nodding with him.

She got up and went to her bathroom. They exited her room to give her some privacy “How’d did you know to use the hoodie for smell? That was some good quick thinking.” Dylan said. “I used to have anxiety when we had to set up camp somewhere sketchy and Marie sent us all these hoodies and beanies and these little things that went up your neck to keep them warm anyways they smelled like her and whenever I felt myself start to get uneasy I just pulled my clothes closer breath it in and it calmed down.” Kane said like it was the simplest thing in the world.

“She sent us those like three months we started writing, and talking to each other. I’ve never had any issues after that.” Rick said smiling. “You got it bad man. I like that.” Ricki and Kane smiled at each other. “Proudly whipped man.” Kane said they all started laughing. “I think it’s best if we rolled out of here and let her have some time.” Dylan said with a sad smile. “Y aske know where we at I she needs us, you too man. Thank you Kane, not a lot people willing to stick around after they see what PTSD can do to someone even as sweet as Marie.” “There is nothing that woman can do that will scare me off that easily. Trust me boys I’ve seen worse.” “I don’t doubt I don’t wish this on anyone.” Dylan said.

They made their ways back home. Kane got the tea instead of coffee ready for her, and made his way back to the hall bathroom where the rest of his clothes and finished getting dressed. When he came back out to the kitchen he found her drinking her tea, fully dressed. “Thank you , this hits the spot so much better.” She said with a smile. “How you feeling now love?” He asked wrapping his hands around her waist resting his chin on her shoulder.

“Ya, I’m really sorry you had to see all that.” “It’s ok baby. It’s not that big of deal honey I’ve seen way wore and I already knew of these episodes before hand it’s really ok. I’m just glad I was here to help. I always got mad at myself for not being able to come be around you to come help you through them hen you had them while I was gone.” “Well I am thankful you were here to help me I’ve never been able to calm down in even half of the time as you got me. It’s almost surreal.” She was truly amazed at how the whole situation came about.

“So what’s on the schedule for today?” Kane asked her with a smile trying to change the subject. Well I don’t have to be at Dylan's office until tomorrow by about 8am. I already cleaned and baked maybe I can go in with you to see mama Callie and Pop. I could help her around the house.” “That sounds great baby, I know she would love the help. I would love to see you at lunch.” HE said winking at her.” Grab some of your things baby you can put them in my room for when you need them later.” He said kissing her lips quickly. “Get a move on though honey we gotta get going” He said with a playful smack to her butt. “She let out a giggle. Grabbing things in her duffle bag filling it with some casual clothes, and scrubs, undergarments.

“You won’t be needing these.” He said pulling her pjs out of her packing.” She raised her eyebrow getting nervous. “I got a bunch of shirts, and I love seeing you in my clothes so if you wanna pack some sweats or joggers I got you on the rest.” He said kissing her forehead. I got you a spar charger for your phone, a brush, some of them hair ties you use without that metal thing, a toothbrush, a loofa, those candles and the brand of tea you like so there’s a couple of things you don’t need to pack.”

“You really went and got those things for me?” “Of course honey, I want you to feel at home at my place. Oh I got you some new pillows to so don’t worry you won’t get that kink back in your neck this should be better now.” He said smiling grabbing her bag. “You got everything you need keys, phone, purse all that fun stuff?” She couldn’t help the look on her face as she was still shocked he’d go through trouble for her he was not a fan of going out to stores. Yet he made sure to get things to make her feel comfortable. She smiled nodding her head.

“You going to drive yourself or do you want to go in the tuck and have me bring you into town in the morning?” “Well I know how back up y'all get on Thursday’s so how about I just drive myself besides on Thrusdays I do have dinner with Ricki. So it’d be easier to just to drive myself back in without having to make you come back in to town, I don’t want to trouble you when you don’t have to.” “You are never any trouble but if that’s what you’d like to do than that’s fine.” “I know how much paper work you guys go through and have to print out the checks so really it’s fine. You can just text or call whenever your done.” “Would mind if I come spend the night? I can bring my stuff over too?” “Ya that would be fine you’re always welcomed here anytime, that’s why you got your key.” She said smiling. “I’ll be sure to bring yours tonight. How about I stay tonight and tomorrow and than after Saturday we can go back to mine and just if it’s ok with you stay til you go back to Meyers office next week. I mean I think it would make more sense staying out with us if your going to be working out there with us for a few days.” “You’re right, that sound fun.” She said smiling.

“I’ll probably head out today just after lunch time.” She said locking the door behind them. He opened her door but wouldn’t give her bag. “Nope, this is coming back with me I’m going to drop this at my place, so you can go straight the main house.” “Ok.” He shut the door and kissed her quickly. They drove off and he followed behind her. When she finally pulled up to the house she saw mama Callie finishing up water her garden.

“Good morning my gorgeous girl. I am so happy to be spending the next couple weeks with you.” Callie said smiling hugging Marie tightly to her. “Hey mama Cal. I am so happy to be out here for a while I still have to go back to Dylans office tomorrow and Friday. Kane talked me into staying her Saturday until I go back there next week.” “Cal clapped her hands together. “This is going to be a good week indeed. Oh Neil will be so happy to have all his babies on the property for a while. I wanted to ask if you and Ricki wanted to spend Thanksgiving with us this year? I think he said his parents were going on that cruise this year and won’t be back until after the New Year, so I was thinking you guys could just spend the holidays here with us. The guys have that spare room in the house and you know how they just adore you and Ricki and we would just love to have you both here.”

“I’ll run it by him but I think that sounds wonderful and I will be here. Are you sure we wouldn’t be intruding?” “Oh honey you know your family and always welcome here. It’s settled than. Now let’s get this house cleaned up and start on lunch these men going to hungry soon and lunch is at 11-12. It’s the meal we provide.” “How about pasta, salad, and breads. With some cookies?” “They would love that. Which pasta?” “Well go Chicken broccoli alfredo, and Lasagnas.” “I think you just made Tank and Bears whole day.” They bothed laughed. While the day went on Neil popped in the kitchen as the lunch was almost done. Pop was taking food and setting it outside on the lunch tables. “So how have you been my favorite child?” “You can’t just call me your favorite pop.” Marie giggled. “ I can if it’s truth it aint nothing nobody doesn’t already know.” He chuckled.

“Well I had a great night after Kane came. You know honestly I never slept as good as I do ever when he’s close to me pop. Ricki was moving some stuff around this morning I’ve been getting such good sleep this past week since Kanes been around I’m actually sleeping hard, anyway Kane I guess went and helped him move some stuff around at his place. When he and Ricki and Dylan came back inside I was in the middle of a bad dream and had an episode and luckily everyone was there to see it. He got me calmed in four minutes pop four minutes not even my meds can help me with that.” “I told you stop taking all that crap. There is nothing wrong with you to be taking all that. Maybe all you need is Kane to curled up to you can toss those sleeping pills. I hate you putting all that crap in your body love bug. You haven’t even touched your meds since the day before Kane even came home. Maybe it’s time we tossed them out kid.”

“Maybe your right, well just take it one day at a time, I won’t get rid of them just yet, but I will think about it. Still I can’t believe he saw that side of me so soon.” “After knowing you have these episodes, I bet you anything he is just happy to be near you to help you through it. It’ll make him feel way better to be able to with you than be away.” “You two are diffentely of the same cloth he said the exact same thing. Uncanny.” She said while Cal laughed. “They are birds of a feather my girl. You have no real idea.” She said laughing placing the rest of the food on the tables. The farm hand sand the boys all came around and washed up.

"Hey Angel," Tank and Bear said getting a hug and a kiss on her forehead. Some of the hands gave her a quick side hug as well. Kane growled a little getting them to hurry away form his girl tightly. I hate the thought of sharing you baby.” “Well it’s a good thing you honestly don’t have to. It’s all family out here babe.” She said. He lowly growled again. “ I love when you call me that.” He smiled. It smells good baby girl. Are you gonna join us.” “No actually I’m leaving now I’m going to the store to get some junk things I figured I’ll just order pizza tonight and with all the junk food too.”

“Well save me some I think I’ll be out of here at a good time today I’m already over half way done. Pop is actually printed all the checks and paper work done, after I’m done signing I’ll be all yours.” Kane said closing her car door. “Well we’ll make sure to have all of our boring conversations done before you get there.” Marie smiled. After running her errands. She went back to the car to grab her last bag. When She looked up and waved at Dylan who was just getting out of hid truck coming in from work. Her phone rang. “Hey Ricki the pizza is on it’s a way and the junk food is all ready. Are you ready to watch our hips expand.” She giggled. She could see Dylan smile walking up to her. “Hey girl I know this is breaking the code but I gotta ask for a favor and cancel tonight. Bear actually asked me out. He gets off early today and I really want to go.” Ricki said you can feel his excitement flow through him, through the phone. “Really Ricki that’s so exciting. I am happy for you. Your gonna have to tell me how it goes. Just remember it’s been awhile since he’s actually since he’s been out on a date don’t hold it against him. Also remember you already know him you’ve been talking to them just as long as I have.” Marie said with a giggle. “YA that’s the only thing keeping me calm. I really like him we’ve talked about this for months and now it’s actually happening. I’m so stoked but I feel bad for bailing.”

“Ricki you’re allowed to put yourself at least once. I’m not fragile I won’t break I’ll be fine.” “Fine like that man whose been sleeping with basically ever night since they’ve all been home? Now I’m willing to bet my car that he’ll be swinging in tonight to curl up next to his favorite little teddy bear.” Ricki said teasing she could even feel his smirk and he could feel her blush. “Well I guess you should know you car is safe.” She smirked Dylan smiled softly stopping as he approached her. “Look I know your busy getting ready so just know that it’s cool and I hope you have a great time tell him I said hi. I expect the details later.” “Love ya girl.” “Love you to Ricki.” They hung up. “Wow did you just get ditched for a date. I don’t think that’s ever happened. Whose the guy Jason Momoa?” Dylan said and they both laughed hard.

“Look if you don’t mind I’m starving and have time to kill if you’d like to hang out with me. I know I’m not Ricki status or anything to exciting, but it could be fun having dinner with a friend.” Dylan said scratching the back of his head. Marie looked up and smiled thinking it over. “You know what Dylan that sounds lovely, you can even talk to me about some things about your office so I can feel more comfortable when I get there. I know I’ve been in there a couple times but never for long periods of times and you know how I get in new places.” She said looking down a little ashamed.”

“Hey you keep that chin up Darlin’ everyone gets uncomfortable in new places there is nothing wrong with that it just means your human. I’ll get cleaned up and be right over.” “Just walk right in I’ll see you soon.”

She said as they made their way back to their own houses. Marie texted Kane. Ricki bailed apparently something better came up. Any ideas what they could be? She texted him. Ya Bear was pretty excited he was going to hold til Friday but he couldn’t wait any longer. I can’t blame him I know what that’s like. Kane texted back. It’s ok I still got the food coming, I even got a friend to join me. I can’t wait to see you soon. She texted back. That’s great We feel bad for taking your night with your bestie babe. So whose coming to dinner Ellie or one of the girls? Should I stop and get something along the way in? Kane asked. No don’t need anything just bring yourself. No actually Dylan overheard my conversation with Ricki and offered to join me. Which is actually helpful since he can talk to me about what to expect in his office tomorrow. I ve only been in there a few minutes exchanging a few files, and you know how I get in new places. So it actually puts my mind at ease a little bit to be better prepared. She texted back.

Kane felt anger seep into him a little bit. He knew she needed this to keep her anxiety and bad emotions at bay so he wanted to be supportive he knew he still couldn’t get there for forty-five minutes, but it made him feel better knowing he would be there soon and at the end of the night she would be in his arms. His only.

That is great baby. It’s always great to get a little prep work. I’ll be there in less than hour. I can’t wait to wrap up around you baby girl I’ll see you soon. They stopped texting the pizza man came and she had changed into an old shirt and some Nightmare Before Christmas pj pants. She set up the table with the pizzas and drinks and two cups on the table. The door opened and shut as Dylan walked into the kitchen. “Hey that smells great. Thanks for having me. It’s been such a long day.” He said running a hand through his hair smiling at her. “Well how about you sit and tell me about it. Than you can tell me about the rules of the office so I don’t anger the boss on my first day.” She said with a smile. He laughed with her lightly. “Ya I hear that guy can be a real dick.” The laughed. “Naw I don’t believe he’s that bad.” She giggled.

“Seriously though how was your day?” She said. “It was long one of the patients got a positive on an STD test she was so scared of her boyfriend finding out that she’s been seeing someone else. Ironically he’s a soldier too he got deployed about three weeks ago. However before he left he came in and got tested as well and came up positive for STD the ironical thing is neither of them have the same one. Their planning to get married and yet they can’t seem to keep it in their pants. Not to mention another girl came in positive for pregnancy test and the first thing she asked was about an abortion because she wasn’t ready to give up her life to take care of some kid. It hit such a nerve I couldn’t stand it. I had to inform her that I don’t do those she’ll need to go somewhere else offered her a counsling appointment and gave her all the handouts of her options. It’s just long day.”

“I’m sorry Dyl. I’ll never get over how people can just cheat if you’re unhappy than just leave. You can’t say you love someone if you can so easily be touched by someone else.” She said digusted. “Also if you’re not ready for the what may come after you have sex, than you need not to be having it.” “I agree with you totally on all of that . You know what you’re getting yourself into yet they all want to play victim when the truth comes to light. Anyway on to better topics the office. It’s run exactly the same way as Dr. Johnson. Like exactly the same so you’re already familiar with the rules. You get an hour for lunch which I would like to take you to if you don’t mind. My office is actually like a mirror copy of Eddies so you’ll just feel backwards a little bit. Other than that nothing different you and Ellie will be the only nurse in when you come plus the receptionist there are two both Riley and his cousin Liam. You know them well by now I would think.” He said with a smile. “She nodded.

Dylan told her about how his nurse got in accident it was rather stupid she was doing some challenge her friend talked her into about dancing along the car thankfully she was not the driver she was the passenger she ended up tripping and getting run over by a motor cycle hurting her hip and her her arm they should both be healed after thanksgiving. Dylan and Eddie both take the week of Thanksgiving and the week of Christmas and New Years.

The laughter filled the room the whole evening. Dylan was so happy thinking how easy this was it wasn’t gonna get any better than this. The door opened. Marie laughter still going they both looked at the door Kane came walking in with a smile. “Howdy yall, how’s it going?” He asked as he came and leaned down to kiss Marie who happy accepted. “It’s actually fun. Dylan has been a great guest. Are you hungry or did you eat with mama Cal, and Pop?” She asked. “Ya I already ate I was just missing you. How you Dylan?” Kane said giving his hand to shake.

“Long day man, just long day.” Dylan said as he took his hand in his. Dylan hid his disappointment that his quality time was now cut short. He looked down and saw a big duffle bag. “Big bag you got there. Looks like circus clowns about to come out of that thing.” They all laughed. “Ya I wanted to make sure I covered all occasions in case they came up, you know how much I hate to go back and forth baby if it can be avoided for small things like my clothes. I’m going to put these away you still got those spots cleared out for me honey?” “Ya, go ahead it should all fit.” Kane kissed her forehead and went to put away his things.

“Wow, big step there. Is he moving in?” “No. No not moving in but we did give each other some room in our rooms to be able to keep some of our things to make our lives easier. Going back and forth early for clothes gets exhausting so we just cu out the middle man time and leave the things we need.” Marie said like it’s no big deal. “I gotta say I am proud of you putting yourself out there, you really doing taking life by storm huh? It makes my heart happy to see you happy Darlin’ Just remember I’m always a phone call away if you need anything. I think I should head out though and give you guys your time. We do have an early morning. We can go to the dinner for lunch.” Dylan said as he gave her a hug. “Goodnight Dyl that sounds nice.” Kane came around the cornr wrapping his hands around her waist. “You heading out already man?” “Yeah we all got long day tomorrow. I’m going to take the girls out for lunch tomorrow for helping me out this week.” “That’s real nice of you. Thanks for coming ove rand hangng with her tonight I know how sad she must have been to get blown off for a man.” They all laughed. “Naw it was great, it’s what good friends do. See you around. Oh by the way Ace and Colt can’t wait to see you Saturday. Night.” “Goodnight.” They both waved back. Kane locked the door, you ready for bed love it’s getting late.”

As they laid happily falling asleep close to each other. Dylan was getting ready in his mind for Saturday. No one knew the storm that was getting ready to come and bring hell back to Marie and Ricki. After all this time would she be ready to fight back against everything that dragged her down through the pits of hell?

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