June 29, 2016

Haley: Week Twenty-Nine, Day Five

Jason got out of bed, stretching as he sat up.  He glanced up at the top bunk, surprised Rio wasn't there.  Rio always slept later than he did...
Did he even come home last night? Jason remembered that Rio hadn't been in the room when he crashed last night.  Man, he was going to get in trouble!

He decided to cover for him...

Johnny sat down next to Jason.  "So, what're you up to?" he asked.

"Just watching the game," Jason said, glancing at him.  "Wanna join?"

Johnny settled back on the couch. "Sure, who's playing?"

"Llamas vs. Gnomes," Jason said, turning his gaze back to the game.  "Gnomes are up by 5 points."

Johnny made a face. "Come on Llamas!" he said, concentrating on the game and rooting for his team.
Jason's jaw dropped.  "You root for the Llamas?!" he asked with surprise.  "Lame!"

Johnny chuckled.  "You can't live in Bridgeport and not root for the Llamas!"

Jason scowled.  "Well, we're not in Bridgeport!"

Haley waved her hand in front of her face as she came in from working on the garden.  "Oh! I'm so sweaty! It's so hot out there," she said, lifting her hair off the back of her neck.

"Hmph!" Jason said, sitting back in his seat and facing forward to watch the game.
Haley smiled and sat down in the armchair.  "So who's winning?" she asked, watching the players run around on the field.  It all looked silly to her.  But, Jason loved watching his team, the Gnomes, play. 
"Where's Rio?" she asked, "Is he still upstairs?"
Jason turned to face his mom with a startled look on his face.  "Uh..."

Something's not right, Johnny thought, turning to face Jason.  "Where's Rio?" he questioned the kid.

Jason turned scarlet red.  "Uh... I don't know..."

"Jason..." Johnny pressed with a no-nonsense stare.

Jason caved.  "I don't think he came home last night..." he admitted in a small voice.
Haley gasped.

Johnny squeezed his eyes shut and prayed for patience.  "And you're just telling us now?!" he demanded.  "Christ!"  Quickly, he jumped up and pulled his phone out.

"Are you ready to tell them?" Nadine asked when she noticed that Rio was hesitating at the front step. 
Rio gulped as he stared at the front door.  Tia was going to be so disappointed in him...

"Yeah... I'm ready," he said, steeling himself for the coming scene.  I'm eighteen now, he reminded himself.  I can make my own decisions...

"I'll call my buddy on the force to have him keep an eye out," Johnny said, flipping through his contacts.  "Dammit.  I should've seen this coming after we spoke last night..."
"Hold on, I'll try calling him again," she said, pushing re-dial.
The phone began ringing by the front door.

"Tia?" Rio said, opening the door with Nadine on his heels.  He looked between his tia and tio cautiously, noticing that they were panicked and making phone calls.  Probably not a good sign... 
Johnny and Haley whirled around.  "Rio! Thank God!" Haley said, releasing a sigh, then angrily demanding, "Where were you?"  Her gaze flicked behind him to where Nadine stood.

Rio shifted nervously. "Err..."
"I... we... have some news..." he started warily.  Rio shifted again, obviously uneasy about whatever news he had to give them.

He glanced back at Nadine with a stricken look.
Nadine stepped up and took hold of Rio's hand.  "We're having a baby," Rio announced quickly, getting courage with her standing beside him.
Shocked, Haley and Johnny looked at Nadine as she rested her hand on her slight baby bump.  "I've been hiding it from my dad, but I'm about 13 weeks," Nadine told them.

It was then that Haley noticed the golden ring on Nadine's finger. 

Rio noticed where Haley's gaze was stuck and hurried on, "We just came from City Hall.  We're married."  He reached for Nadine's hand again and squeezed.  "No one will keep us apart ever again."

"Never," Nadine agreed, squeezing his hand back and grinning happily.
Haley stared, shocked silent.  She opened her mouth and then closed it again.  Rio was married with a baby on the way?  She glanced back at Nadine's baby bump and then over to meet Rio's gaze. 

Rio chewed his lip while he waited for Haley or Johnny to yell.  "Well... say something!" he said nervously.  "But, it doesn't matter what you say! We thought it all out last night.  I'm enlisting in the military and Nadine's going to stay home and raise the baby and they have family housing near the base where we can all stay."

Haley felt tears welling in her eyes.  Rio was going to have a baby and he was moving out.  Reaching up, she cupped his cheek.  "It feels like just yesterday you were a little boy," she said sadly.  But he wasn't a little boy anymore.  Truth be told, he'd been forced to grow up long before now.  

Rio met Haley's gaze, slayed by the tears he saw in her eyes.  She was as close to a mom as he had ever had.  "Tell me you're happy for us. Tell me we're going to be fine," he said, anxious and worried.  Despite his assertions that he was 18 and now an adult, he was still scared spitless.  And if Haley didn't think he could do this on his own...

"I am so happy for you," she told him, knowing what he needed.  "And you're going to be fine." It wouldn't be easy for the kids, but they genuinely loved each other and she knew that Rio would be a steady rock for both Nadine and their baby.  "You're going to be absolutely fine!"
Rio made a low noise in his throat and then threw himself into Haley's arms, giving her a fierce hug and squeezing his eyes tight against the tears burning in his eyes. He felt his fears and worries melting away in the face of Haley's conviction.   If Haley believed in him, then he knew everything was going to be fine.

Taking a deep breath, Rio stepped back and wiped at his eyes.  "I should go tell Jason..." he said, glancing towards the stairs.  "Is he upstairs?"

As Rio headed up the stairs, Haley and Johnny sat down with Nadine in the living room.  Haley clasped and unclasped her hands.  She'd only met Nadine a handful of times and wasn't sure what to say...
Meanwhile, Nadine sat nearby shyly, playing with the hem of her shirt and avoiding eye contact with the other adults.  She kind of wished she'd gone upstairs with Jason...

"Hey Jas..." Rio said as he rounded the corner into the attic, the room he and Jason had shared for as long as he could remember.
"Dude! Where've you been?! Did you spend the night with Nadine?!" Jason asked, bounding up off the bed, excited to see his best bud.  "Lucky dog! I tried to cover for you!  Boy!  Mom's going to kill you for not coming home last night!"
Rio swallowed heavily.  "Yeah, I saw Nadine last night," he said, trying to decide where to start.He blew out his breath.  This wasn't getting any easier to tell.  "Um, I found out she's pregnant.  We got married this morning."
"Oh man! That sucks! We're not going to be able to room with each other!"  Jason said. "You're probably gonna take Rachel's room, huh?  It's still got the crib in there!"
Rio glanced away.  "Actually, I enlisted.  We're moving to base housing," he said quietly.
"Wait. You're moving out?" Jason asked. "You can't move out! We had so many plans! It was going to be me and you, together forever!  I was gonna be a superstar athlete and you were going to be my manager!"

Rio held his arms out plaintively.  "Those are kids' dreams, Jas."
Jason clenched his hands in fists. "It's not a kid's dream!" he argued, his voice rising.  "I'm gonna be a superstar someday!"  He fought down his growing panic.  He couldn't believe Rio was leaving.  They were blood brothers!  They were gonna do everything together!  "God! I can't believe she tricked you into marrying her!" he said heatedly.  "Why'd you have to go and marry her?! We could've just raised the baby here! She could've even stayed if you wanted her to stay! There's plenty of room!"

Rio shook his head.  "No, I want to have a normal family.  I want my kid to know his mom and his dad.  I don't want to raise him like we were raised!"

Jason shook his head.  "I can't believe you're just gonna leave."
"Aw, come on, Jas.  It's time to grow up," Rio said quietly. "Look, we'll always be brothers. I'll give you some time to cool off, okay.  I'll call you when we're settled, okay?"

"Whatever."  Jason shrugged, looking away from Rio.

Jason threw himself down on his bed angrily.  "It's time to grow up, Jason," he said nastily, mimicking Rio.  "I want to have a family."   He plopped his chin in his hand.  "What the hell was wrong with the way we grew up anyways?" he shouted down the stairs, knowing that Rio was already gone. 

Now everything was going to be different, he sulked.
"Do you want to talk?" Haley asked, quietly coming upstairs.

Jason turned further away from his mom, giving her his back.  "No," he snapped.
Haley sighed and sat down on his bed beside him. "He's going to need us, you know.  It's not easy to be so young when you have a baby," she told him.  "And he's going to need our support."

"If he wanted our help, then he should've stayed here," Jason said angrily.  "He just couldn't wait to leave!"
Haley sighed and squeezed Jason's shoulder.  "He didn't do any of this to hurt you, you know."  She paused, dreading the thought that came to mind.  "Jason, you're not... having sex with anyone, are you?" she asked tentatively.

"NO!" Jason squeaked, rolling his shoulder away from his mom's touch. "God, Mom!" His cheeks and tips of his ears burned bright red.  He couldn't believe his mom was asking him about sex.  "Geez!"

Haley pulled her hand back and sighed.  "Okay. Well, we can talk later," she said, standing.

Haley sent in reinforcements.  "So, you wanna talk about anything?" Johnny asked.
"No! Go away! I don't want to talk about sex with you!"

Johnny smothered his chuckle.  "Good. I don't want to talk to you about sex either," he told Jason. 

Jason rolled his eyes and threw himself back on the bed, pouting.
Jason glanced down and saw the football on the floor.  He had an idea...
Leaning down, he grabbed the ball and held it up.  "Wanna toss the ball around?"

Jason scowled at Johnny.  "Fine," he said grudgingly.  "I need to practice anyway."  But he wasn't going to enjoy it.

Jason pulled his arm back and snapped it forward, letting the football loose.
It flew at Johnny at an incredibly fast speed.
Johnny caught it and felt his hand sting from the impact.  He shook his hand out and grinned back at Jason. 
"Christ, kid. Nice throw!" Johnny said, tossing it back to Jason.  "You've got a killer arm."
"Yeah?" Jason asked, proud to hear Johnny's praise.  Not like Johnny knew anything about football, but still...

"Hell yeah, Jas!" Johnny said. "You're going to have all the scouts looking at you senior year!"

Jason grinned, catching the ball and throwing it back to Johnny, making sure to toss it as hard as he could.  See, Rio, he thought.  It wasn't just a kid's dream! He was going to be a superstar!


  1. Poor Jason :c he didn't take Rio's leaving very well at all. At least he's not giving up on his dreams though! But yikes, the sex talk, yikes.

    I hope Rio's okay with Nadine and his military life. Will we still be seeing him occasionally in the future?

    1. Jason imagined them living the good life together in the house - throwing parties & dating oodles of pretty groupies. ;)

      Lol - yikes! The sex talk!

      Rio's going to be wonderful! I originally planned for Rio TO stay with Jason and be his help. But, I love him with Nadine & thought he deserved a happy ending after his crazy childhood! He'll still be in town, so we'll still see him!

  2. I was sure Haley was going to have a serious fit of rage there for a second. But it went so well, and Rio grew up and moves out. It went so fast.

    Jason doesn't want anything to change. And now he's all alone, and his mum has a boyfriend he pretends he doesn't like; so now he doesn't have all her attention either. Aaw, poor Jason. I hope he gets to live his dream of becoming a superstar.

    1. I think she was a little shocked to say anything at first! She's shocked, disappointed & worried for Rio - but what else can she do other than support him?

      Jason took Rio leaving really hard. It hasn't really bugged him that Haley is spending more time with Johnny because he's caught up in sports & girls, but 16 is a hard age!

  3. Sometimes, being an adult means swallowing what you can't change and supporting it instead. And there's the difference between Haley and Jason's reactions. It's also exactly what Rio did there. He accepted the change and made moves to support it. Good for him! It shows that Haley, Maritza and (to a lesser extent) Shaye did something right with him. Here's hoping he and Nadine are always happy, and the baby is healthy.

    LOL. Good for Johnny with the 'sex talk.' xD Throwing the pig skin around was a perfect distraction for killer there. lol

    1. Exactly! Haley senses that Rio's already taking care of what he needs to do, so the best she can do is support him. (And make sure Jason doesn't go down that path! LOL!)

      I thought that was perfect, too. Sometimes it's not about what you say, but the time you spend with them. :)

  4. C'mon, Jason, you didn't really cover for Rio! When they asked, you told them he wasn't there! Lol

    I'm really glad Haley supported Rio's decision. There was a moment of pause, and you could just imagine Haley making that decision in the moment. She and Johnny handled it really well.

    Jason, not so much. But he's still a kid right now. I hope he gets over it so that he and Rio are still good friends.

    1. Lol. Jason did roll right over when his mom noticed Rio was gone. But, he didn't tell them BEFORE! :)

      Haley could see that Rio was going to be okay. He'd craved that sort of stability since he was little! Yay - Rio gets his happy ending!

      Jason was really taken a back. He's still a young kid & naive to a lot of the under currents going on. He doesn't seem to dwell on the negative too long - I'm sure he'll be fine in not too long!

  5. I loved the way you had Rio and Nadine age up like that! I bet Rio is going to be a good dad.