We got home around three and Chloe was exhausted again, so I made sure she was in bed, with everything she needed around her, and I went to see Sparks right away.
He was family and this shit couldn't wait.
When I got there, he was seated at his kitchenette with a smoke hangin' out of his mouth.
"You dying?" I came right out with it.
There was no need to beat around the bush. I'd already cried with my baby girl, cried with my Old Lady and thrown shit. Now I was settling on anger.
"It would appear so." He gave a nod.
"What is it?" I asked.
"Lung cancer." He gave a ragged breath.
"How long?" My lips went tight.
"How long've I known, or how long've I got?" His brow furrowed in confusion.
"Both." Might as well find out both at once.
"Few weeks before Chloe arrived and a few days ago, before I called Liv and had my money transfered, I was told I only had a few more months." He looked up at me with a solidarity.
"And you're still fucking smoking?" A gaped at the cigarette in his hand.
"When are you gonna quit?" He turned it around to me, "You got a baby on the way. Now's a better time than any."
"Where'd you get the money?" I gaped at him.
"That was from my accounts." He smiled sadly, "It's accumulated a lot of interest over the years."
"Where'd you get to put in your accounts?" I ground out.
"Before this biker shit, you know Bruiser and I had a band." He huffed and a light ile touched his face, "Sure as shit, it paid off, but I was never in it for the money. It was all about being a family. I never needed high-end shit. Only people who want to impress others buy into that shit. A good pair of boots will last years."
"Why'd you give it to us?" I was still confused about my end. Why had he given me any?
"Because, there's more to come when I die, and I wanna' see y'all enjoy some of it while I'm here." He shrugged like it was nothing.
I closed my eyes and looked away from him. The emotions were hitting me hard.
"We won't be able to enjoy it, knowin' you're dyin'." My voice was choked.
"Look at me, Victor." He hadn't used my real name since I became "Church" and I choked at I turned to face him.
I could feel the hot tears streaming down my face and I knew he could see them, but I didn't fucking care.
"I don't wanna' see the sad faces, I don't wanna' see the tears and heartache, and I sure as shit don't want anyone to fuss over me." He pointed at me as he spoke, "It's why I didn't tell anyone when I found out. My time has passed. My wife and my baby girl are in the ground. The only things keepin' me here were you and my beautiful grand baby and your both grown and able to take care of yourselves."
"This is my last holiday," He looked out the window with tight lips, "I can feel it, and I want it to be good. I want it to be happy and I I want everyone around. I ain't down for the bullshit or the babyin' either. I'm gonna eat my turkey and stiffin' and all the fixins and ain't no one gonna be the wiser, but Livvie, Chloe, Ali and you."
"You ain't gonna' tell the gang?" My jaw went tight, "What about Bear? He's been with you since the band."
"No." He held his chin high, "He's in my will though. He's always had his eye on my bike."
"Sparks-!" I began to argue, but he pointed a finger at me.
"I don't want to relive or think about the good ole days, if I did, I'd tell him." He snapped, "I wanna live in the now. I want to see the people around me laughin', jokin' around and havin' a good time like they always do. I want them to see it from me, without the potty and the worry. Is it that hard ta' understand?"
"You wanna go out without anyone knowin'," I ground out, "And it ain't fair to any of 'em."
"I don't want people's last memories of me bein' of them worryin' 'bout me or my illness. I want their memories to be happy." He looked me in the eyes as though he was begging me to understand.
I did understand, but it didn't mean that I thought he was being fair.
"Chloe's family normally does this huge Thanksgiving dinner in Maine." I eyed him, "I told her we'd go, but you don't look good now, you ain't gonna be able to travel in a couple months."
"We don't need ta worry 'bout that" He smiled, "Livvie's got it all under control."
"What does that mean?" My brow furrowed.
"It means, it ain't for you to worry about." He gave me a slow nod.