| 2 Years Later |
Janine returned to her house after being gone on a job for more than a month with Maddox's uncle, Constantine. The day after, she showed up at Maddox's job looking for him. Maddox became an accountant at a big corporation. The fact that his dad was gone bothered him, but he dealt with it just fine. He was in the process of dropping some papers off at someone's desk when he noticed Janine. He smiled at her when she made eye contact with him and he walked to her. "Hey bigshot," Janine raised an eyebrow with a small smile when he approached.
"Hey sweet thang," he hugged her, grabbing a hand full of her ass. The two of them were very on and off again, but at that time, they were on, "how was your trip?" He kissed her on the lips for a second.
"Rewarding." She rubbed his lips with her thumb, "can you go to lunch?"
"Uhh," he looked to his watch, "yea, let me go grab my wallet," he walked off real quick.
Janine spun around in a carefree manner and surveyed the office. When Maddox came back, they left out, "I would like chicken."
"You can have chicken," he rested his hand on her lower back. She put her head on his shoulder while they walked.
They went into a restaurant, "What have I missed?" Janine asked.
"Uh, shit, my mother's hip surgery went well. Celia moved to California and Trent's girlfriend had a boy."
"Babies ..." She shivered, "probably cute!"
He shook his head, "I'm adopting a kid because i know you will never have my babies. Either that or i have to find a woman who will."
She laughed, "kids are not a part of my job description, Maddox."
"Thats why i said what i said. Kids were always apart of my future and that will NEVER change."
Janine nodded, "I understand."
He kissed her head, "be glad i love you and im leaning more toward adoption."
Grinning, "I am. Really I am." They'd had that conversation before so she understood. At times, she wished she hadn't followed in Docs footsteps but couldn't disappoint him.
He paused, "what about a surrogate?"
"We could do a surrogate." She was unsure.
"Yea but ... not ... right now ... right?"
"No, not right now"
She took a deep breath, "can we talk about it later tonight, then?"
"Of course.." he rubbed her arm and kissed her temple.
| Later |
Before Maddox got to Janine's, she called carmine. She explained about Maddox wanting kids. "I don't know what to do. I can't have a family. He wants one. WITH ME!"
"So just tell him no. Its that simple."
"He'll ... leave ... me. We'll be off with no more on."
"Look, im not gonna make this decision for you."
"I just need help. Please. I'm lost. I miss Doc. I just need help." Her eyes watered. Janine's priorities were changing and she was turning into a real person. A person that she liked and wanted to be full time. Not just with Maddox.
"Lost why? You knew what the job was before you accepted it."
Janine clenched her jaw, "I was also a child when I got brought into this! FORGET IT." She hung up.
Just as janine sat there, maddox came barging in like always, "Lucy, im home!" He said in his best ricky ricardo voice.
Janine sighed and looked at him. "We can't ... I can't," she choked out, "I can't give you ... anything."
"Why not?" His smile instantly disappeared.
"I want to be ... normal. And I can't. I love you. I want you. But ... it's too risky. I'm scared for you and whatever kids we have. I'm lost," she started sobbing, "I can't fix this."
Maddox just looked at her, so disappointed, "well, our anniversary is coming up, i wanted to take you to meet my family in italy." He tossed the ticket to her, "be right back," he went to the bathroom, mainly to yell and curse silently.
Janine finished her crying and waited for him. "I'll go." She yelled towards the bathroom and figured she'd completely break up with him when they got back.
Maddox came out, face red, "im hungry."
Janine got up and raced to the kitchen to get him something. She didn't come out until the food was done. She handed him dinner, then sat quietly while he ate.
"Thank you.." he finished eating and handed her his plate.
She took it to the kitchen, then sat on the edge of the couch, curling herself up into a ball with her legs pulled into her body. She didn't know what to say.
"Come here, man," he opened his body to her.
She shook her head, "I'm sorry. I don't know what to do. I can make every decision when it comes to how to quietly kill an entire group of people but I can't figure this out. I called Carmine for advice and he gave me nothing so ... Im frustrated and Im scared. So. No."
"Get over here and stop playing." Janine got down off the arm of the couch and sat next to him. Maddox put his arm around her, "im not about to lie to you and say im not disappointed, i am. However, i get it. Im just most pissed that we will most likely end up breaking up soon because of it. That shit is lame."
"We've broken up a lot already." Sighing, "we'll figure it out after we come from italy."
"Yeah, but I never felt like it was final until now."
"Yea," she nodded, "I hear you."
He kissed her on the lips and held her waist, "love you," he stood up, "im going to pack."
| Days Later - Italy |
They'd arrived and gotten themselves settled. That same evening, they had dinner at Maddox's Grandma's house. The next day, they went out for a walk. It wasn't Janine's first trip out of the country, but it was her first to Italy and she loved it. Maddox hadn't been to italy since he was a teenager. This was the perfect time to come back although, the woman that he was with, he'd no longer be with after this trip most likely.
"I think we should have some cake," Janine was looking at a pastry shop they were walking past, "or a tart," she stopped, looking at the window, "or a muffin."
"What the fuck do you want woman?" He pulled her head to his chest and kissed the crown.
"Everything!" She was getting excited, "no. A tart. With the pretty fruit on top. Is it sweet?" She broke away from him and went inside, "I want this," she said in Italian and pointed to it, then to a muffin repeating the same thing, then to a slice of cake, "what kind is that? I can't have coconut," she told Maddox in Italian.
"I know babe, don't get it. Try the strawberry and blue berry tart," he responded in Italian.
"But I think that cake might be worth dying over." She looked up at him, then looked around some more. They finally left the shop with 2 pieces of cake, neither coconut, 2 fruit tarts and 1 muffin. "This is my dinner. I WANT THAT!" She'd walked away again. A couple of hours later and Janine purchased a vintage tea kettle, venetian glass earrings, bottle openers with the Pope's face on them, lace ... Just lace. She had no idea what she wanted with it but it was pretty and she wanted it. And a carnival mask. After the last thing she bought, she'd tried on the mask and as she took it off, there was Doc. Across the street. And the mutherfucker had the audacity to stroll through town after all the shit he left her with. Did Maddox see him? Should she say something? He was hiding so maybe she shouldn't but she was itching to. Still, she looked down at her bags, "I think i have everything." Then turned to go in the opposite direction.
"Hold on, I need to get my Nonna some candles from this place up here. I told her i would," maddox turned around holding most of Janine's bags and heading in the direction she was leading him away from.
"There's a place down here ..." She was desperately pointing in the other direction. Finally, she went and walked along side him, then stopped him, "let's take a picture."
"Janine in a second, damn.." he put his arm around her and turned almost right into his father. It was like he got socked in the face. He looked Doc square in the eyes, then down to his feet and walked right around him, "they should really work on cleaning the bums off the street ..." he said to janine and to no one in particular.
Janine sighed and walked with Maddox, glancing back at Doc, then back to Maddox, "how about we go drop this stuff off and relax on a gondola for a while?"
"That's fine, but damn woman, let me get these damn candles" he walked into the shop. Janine stayed put as Doc walked up to her from behind.
"May I help you?" She asked in Italian as to not blow his cover.
As soon as she turned around. He hugged her, and said into her ear, "i miss you, im proud of you, stay strong," he kissed her temple and walked away.
Janine held her breath and watched him walk away. She wished she'd said something to him. She wished she'd hugged him back. She wished she'd said 'thanks.' She just wished. Janine looked up at the sky, nearly at the sun, in an effort to keep the waterworks from starting but was unsuccessful. She walked away a little down the strip, in the opposite direction, hoping to give herself time to breathe before Maddox came out looking for her. When he did, she held her phone up and took a picture of him, then showed it to him, only to distract him from her face since she wasn't sure what she looked like at the moment. "How many did you get?" Looking at the bag.
"Ten," he smiled and kissed her, "whats wrong? You got the, 'I just ugly cried look in your eyes." He sat the bags down and pulled her into his body to look at her, "and tell the truth."
She immediately laughed and put her face on his chest, and put her arms around him, "he just told me to stay strong and then I crumbled like a child."
He rolled his eyes, she couldnt see, "why are you crumbling? You should always stay strong. You dont need him to tell you that."
"Because their is a huge part of me that constantly needs his approval. I like to know what he thinks of me. It's important."
"What do YOU think of you? " He rubbed her back
"I don't like me at all. Not anymore."
"Why not baby? You are amazing" he rubbed the back of her head, "you are everything"
"Everything except a real person," she let go of him, took a few bags from him and started walking again. "Now i just have to figure out how to become a real person while I have this job. I may know where to start."