Saturday, October 29, 2011

Chapter 12: Therapy Pt. 2 - Max

“So Mr. Talbot what would you like to talk about today? The therapist asked looking across the gap between their two overstuffed chair.

“I do not wish to talk I wish to find answers.” Max said maintaining his pouty state. Yes, it had been his idea for them to enter therapy but he was pretty sure he didn’t need it.

“Answers about what?” the therapist asked making Max simmer with annoyance.
“Why will my wife not say she’s my wife? Why can we not just be normal happy people? Why can we not just be happy?” he said slowly relaxing a bit. It was obvious max was a much easier nut to crack than Mal.

“That’s why we’re here. Everyone needs to deal with their personal issues before they can be in a successful relationship. Let’s start with Mal though. You are in love it is clear. She accepts the best and worst in you and you her. She says you knew she never wanted to be married yet you and I’ll quote her here ‘tricked her’ into it.” The therapist said looking back at his notes. “If you knew this about the woman you love why would you do it?”

“Ah you see Mal lies, well she doesn’t lie but she doesn’t always know what she wants. She wants everything marriage is a home, to be a wife but without the documents that say so. What she does not understand is the legality of the situation. I am a Canadian citizen and she US. We would have no legal right and if something were to happen to me she would not have support. I know she can not give me her money when she passes but I can and plan on giving her mine. “ he explained heaving a sigh. “It happened in Vegas the week before Sarah and Tanger’s wedding.”
“The friends Mal describes as sickeningly perfect?”

“Yes they would be them. They are perfect.They’re so perfect they belong in a …” he paused looking for the right phrase in English “Doll house a Barbie, Ken home. They are my best friends though I love them and always will. I love their girls, and what they’re doing in Pittsburgh. You know Sarah is going back in school to be a practitioner in addition to being a Mom to the three girls they adopted? Kris is just on fire in the league. He was barely drafted but look at home now? They are just amazing people.”

“Back to you and Mal…” the therapist encouraged.

“Oh yes, it was the week before their wedding and we were taking a short trip to Vegas. It had been a long summer. We went to Haiti and Mal had loved it though she had to be forced into it she ended up loving it. Then there was free agency and my choice to go here to Philly. It was a hard choice but my agent encouraged it. I like it here but I do not like how many people I hurt and let down. So their wedding was three weeks before training camps. We went the week before the wedding week to Vegas. It was so we could be back to help. Mal was helping Sarah and I was doing my best to get things set in Philly and keep things sane for Kris. There is nothing like a woman planning a wedding even as laid back as Sarah is I think I saw her angry for the first time ever that week.”

The therapist gave Max a pointed look encouraging him to get back on topic.
“So Mal and I went to Vegas. We had a great time, lots of dancing some gambling, she’s quite good at poker. So much so we were always getting free drinks. It was one of these nights where she was up by a few thousand and I was down by a few so we were really drinking. Between the drinks and finishing up our anti-malaria medicine I just asked her. I’ve had the ring a long time since before our time apart. She’s the only girl I ever want to be with again. So she laughed and said yes and then the casino hotel offered to make the arrangements for a small ceremony. She said ‘yeah sure’ in her drunk state. I think they just not wanted to pay her and provide service than give her the money. So we stood me in a dress shirt and slacks, Mal in a blue dress that made her look just…” he closed his eyes imagining. “She looked so beautiful. If it had been planned by her I think she would have picked a similar dress with even months to plan. So there we were saying slightly tipsy vowels in Vegas. We signed the papers and went back to he drinks and you know the wedding night stuff.” He said wiggling his eyebrows.

“So you didn’t intentionally get her drunk to marry her?” the therapist asked.

“No, she won’t believe me but I did not intend for it at all. I am happy it happened though. I just sent all out paper work in for our marriage to stand in Canada as well. She says she loves me and will not divorce me but is still not happy with being married.” He shrugged. “I don’t know what I can do to make her feel better with it.”

The therapist sighed and brought his hand to his chin in thought. “I think it will just take time. Mallory has so many walls around her heart the concept of marriage is a lot for to handle. Being in love and having it reciprocated was hard enough for her but this legal binding symbol of love is harder. I know you’re a good man and she is a good woman. I believe with time you’ll figure it all out. You just have to remember that for her the idea of having your heart is a big responsibility and one she was bot looking to accept. Now with it being legal there are laws that say doesn’t have an easy out. She has had an escape route for everything all her life and is struggling with not having one now. She knows she doesn’t want to have one but it’s hard to blindly enter into something not knowing how or when it will it and now.” The therapist explained as he scribbled notes in their file. “I really think you won’t be with me much longer. You’re strong personalities who I can tell will find a way to make this work.”


Max entered the condo taking his shoes off bound for the kitchen where the smells and sounds of food cooking were coming from. It was a off day and as always Mal was making dinner for him.

“What’s for dinner?” he asked kissing her on the cheek before sitting down in his usual spot on the counter where he liked to watch her cook from.

“Steak stir fry and jasmine rice.” She said moving to stand between his knees giving him a quick kiss. “I got you something today.” She said reaching around him to where her hand bag sat on the counter. She fished out a small box handing it to him. “I just thought you should have one too.”

He looked at the little wrapped box skeptically and then to her raising an eyebrow. Mal nodded her encouragement and he pressed on taking the fancy lid off taking out the velvet box. “Really?” he asked not opening the box yet not taking his eyes off of it.

She rested her hands on his legs. “I said I’m not going to leave or change our status. I figure all the girls in their fuck me pumps should know if they try to fuck you I’ll stab them in the eye with my own fuck me pumps.” She shrugged opening the box for him to reveal the rather plain platinum band till she showed him the etching on the inside. “À cœur vaillant rien d'impossible.” She said softly. “I have it in mine too.

“With a willing heart all things are possible. That is how it is best said in English. With a vaillant heart nothing is impossible.” He repeated in a more direct translation. “I think it’s wonderful.”

Mal slipped it on his finger with a perfect fit. “So no slutting it up ok?’ she joked leaning in for a kiss. “I mean you not the girls. They can slut it up for the rest of the boys.”

Max held her close bring his legs around her not letting her move. “I love you and you are right nothing is impossible for us.”

She let her smile fade figuring there was no better time to tell him. “I’m glad you say that because things are about to change.” She cleared her throat.

His brows knit and he opened his month to say something only to have her cover it with her hand. He smiled licking her hand bringing a glare from her.

“Ok asshole lick me again and I kill you; which would be a shame since I think you’ll be a great Dad… because I’m pregnant.”

Friday, October 21, 2011

Therapy Pt: 1 MAL

Here it is! Honestly I didn't know when or how the story would continue just that it would. All of a sudden Mal was talking to me again so here we are! As always let me know what you think!


“So tell me Mrs. Talbot what will we be talking about today?” he asked sitting all superior like across from me.
“Mal please. Mallory is name I go by Mal why do we have to go over that every week.” I say as I do each week.
“Ok Mal. If you’re will I’d like to start from the beginning, or your version of the beginning of how we got here.”
I nodded and sighed knowing it was time. There was only so long I could rage on about my Mother and childhood in these sessions. I was here for a reason and this was a part of it.
Max and I had been together for a year and a half in theory when the Pens won the cup. Sure we had our time apart where he cheated and then I saw someone while we were apart. We’re both at peace with that though. I ended up telling him and he flipped out and we both cried since it was playoffs and emotions were all over the place. Sarah and Kris were planning their wedding and thank God Kris has recovered from his concussion. It was the scariest thing ever seeing a friend get hurt like that. Max and I started talking in February around the trade deadline the prospect of him no longer being in Pittsburgh. Thankfully we made it past that but knew his contract was up. I knew his agent was trying to keep him in town and keep everything as it was here so we could be happy. I forgot about it though as the guys pushed through round and round of the playoffs. I was busy helping Sarah with wedding stuff and adoption stuff. I went back to working at the hospital too, just picking up shifts here and there. I was doing a lot of education stuff with families which I thought I would hate but ended up liking.
The boys made it through to the finals and everyone was on the edge of their seat. I mean you know you’re a sports therapist. You deal mostly with athletes and these times of pressure. I mean there were three states for Max. Game time where he was so in his head we’d barely talk, resting where he was so beaten and broken I would cry since there was little I could do to fix his broke body aside from ice and rub and heat. Then there were the pent up sexual moments where we’d be so ready but stop due to the crazy must drive for the cup then we fuck theory all the guys seemed to ascribe to.
I mean long story short the guys won and everything we had all been going through was worth it. A team really is a family and all the fellow wives and girlfriends, kids and Parents, we were all there to see it. Kris and Sarah grabbed the headlines but everyone felt like winners and we were so happy to let them have the spot light. I mean they’re perfect and my best friends.”
“So you aren’t jealous of Sarah?” he asked making random notes on his sheet. I was pretty sure he wanted to be a caricature artist as a child and just used this therapy thing as a chance to practice.
“No. Well maybe her dress size and ability to be blond but not stupid. But no in the way you think. Sarah is my best friend and we’ll all be on one another’s team. “ I could tell me made a note when I sighed.
“It was in the crazy sex fest after the cup that Max started to become distant. We had a month to wait till free agency. We stayed in town. I worked Max healed up. We took a trip to Haiti the two of us to see the orphanage and to do vaccines. Then we went to Montreal to just wait it out with his family. I didn’t ask one thing about anything concerning his contract and such. I thought I was being the most awesome girlfriend in the world. I mean winning the cup made him a hot commodity but I never thought we’d leave Pittsburgh. I was shopping with Sarah the opening day of free agency when we heard it on the radio.”
“Philly and Pittsburgh aren’t far apart.” He didn’t know it but it was when people said things like that they were most likely to get punched in the face.
“No they aren’t far but they are different. It was the choice of stay in Pittsburgh and put every stressor possible on my relationship with Max or go with him.”
“And you went with him.”
“I am with him. We’re here in Philly. We’re together it’s crazy and I’m not sure if we’re happy but we’re here.”
“You seemed to skip a rather important part of the story.”
“Yeah well, I’m not to keep on how I came to be Mrs. Talbot so maybe when Max is back in to see you he’ll tell you how he tricked me into that happening.”
“Would this be anything like how you’re trying to hide from him that you’re pregnant?”
“I really hate you sometimes. You should be glad we’ve dealt with my anger already or I’d have given you a black eye by now. Yes though. I am hiding that I’m pregnant from him for now. He’s just getting settled with the team and I don’t want to mess that up for him. We’re days away from getting the place we want here so I’ll tell him before we start moving in. Things are already tight in the hotel and I don’t want things to be any heavier than they are.”
“You’re going to tell him though right Mrs. Talbot?”
“Yeah. I mean I love him. Obviously I’ll tell him he’s going to be a Dad… when the time is right.”

Thursday, April 21, 2011


I know FINALLY! As promised I wasn't done nor am I done yet. Max and Mal are still on the road to... well I know where they're going.
I left the hospital questioning everything. Kris was a good person, why was he laying in a bad barely able to move and unable to remember the love of his life? Why had Sarah been so afraid to say yes? Why had the Universe or God or whatever forces out these brought them to this place? It was unfair. Nothing ever seemed fair. Just once I wanted to see the good people win, not just the game but in life. The drive back to max’s was short considering most people were on their way out of the city including his family. They had flown out shortly after I headed to the hospital. I knocked on the door and Max answered offering me a tiny silver object on his open palm. I raised my eyebrow skeptically.

“Mal, it is simply so you can come in when I am in the shower or something. Consider it my consent for you to freak me the fuck out by turning up whenever you feel like it.” He said the key still laying on him palm.

“What if I want it to be more?” I asked before I could contain my words my eyes looking between him and the key. I didn’t want to be like Sarah. I didn’t want to miss my opportunity to say yes and end up at the hospital holding Max’s hand having him not remember me. It was scary as fuck but the only thing scarier was losing him and it was all I could think of as I stood there.

“Call me crazy but did you just say you wanted to move in with me?” he asked taking his turn to quirk and eyebrow though it was more to mock me as a wide grin spread across his face.

I stepped up level with him covering the key in his open palm with my own as my other hand slipping behind his neck bringing our lips together. “Answer your question?” I asked brushing my lips over his.

“No, not really.” He said back his lips curling into a smile.

“Yes, I want to live here with you.” Thankfully I was able to edit out the try in my head. When people say they’ll try it’s like giving themselves an opportunity to fail. I didn’t want to fail. Not at this. Not now when everything felt so fragile.


“Woman where do you think all these clothes are going?” Max asked as the movers brought in the fifth and sixth box of my wardrobe.

“The spare room closet.” I said with a shrug. I didn’t like when he called me woman in front of people but in Private I thought it was funny and fun and to be honest it was weird but I liked how he acted as if I was a possession of his. It was nice to be wanted in the way that Max always made me feel wanted.

“You should go look in there.” Max said as he walked into the kitchen crunching into an apple trying to look innocent. I glaired and headed up the stairs.
Throwing the doors open my jaw dropped. “MY EYES!” I squealed. “You’ve got to be kidding me. MAX GET YOUR ASS UP HERE.”

He slinked into the bedroom standing next to me giving a shrug still munching on the apple.

“Explain yourself.” I said hands on my hips.

“I like bright colors… and plaid.” He said trying to give me big doe eyes but really they just translated into ‘however much fashion fail I have you want to fuck me on top of my pile of neon tartan clothes before we set it ablaze’ eyes.

“Just… no. We can put them at my place or burn them but I need a place to put my clothes.” I said with a sigh.

“That would be a good use of your place.” He said with a nod.

It was the one concession to my moving in. I had to keep my place at his insistence. It was January and in a month his fate with the team would be hanging in the balance. I didn’t think he had anything to worry about but his fears seemed legitimate to him so I didn’t question it. His contract was expiring at the end of the season and that apparently made it a desirable thing to move him now.

It was scary to think of anything about Max having an expiration date except the milk in his fridge. I didn’t know what to say and I still don’t. At best I managed to muster a pat on the leg as we watched tv. Now here I stood with him and I knew he was thinking about it again, I could see it in his eyes.

“Well help me then, start taking my clothes out of the boxes and putting yours in.” I say unloading chunks of clothes on hangers. What made the whole situation so laughable was I only brought my winter clothes. I still had a whole closet of summer ones still at the apartment. Sometimes Max and I were so alike it was scary.
It was worrying how silent he had gone all of a sudden. “Stop thinking about it.” I said knowing he was contemplating being traded and his contract ending. “Either stop thinking about it or worse, start talking about it.” I said with a silly kind of gasp at the horror of talking about feelings.

He sat down on the edge of the guestroom bed. Much to my shock he was going to talk about it. “If I have to leave I want to ask you to come with me but I do not want this to be a fight because I just got you back.”

He looked up at me with legit puppy eyes. The eyes that could make me say yes to anything if he chose to ask me while looking at me like that. He was breaking my heart. I lace our fingers together and lay my head on his shoulder. “I want you to know that’s something I want to do. It’s just scary as fuck. You left home as a kid to do this and aside from adventures I’ve never planned on leaving Pittsburgh.” I sighed pushing the hair that had fallen into my face away with my free hand. “I love you so much it scares me. To be without you now…” I lift my head meeting his eyes, those big blue orbs sucking me in with their intensity, love and pure emotion.

Thankfully he had the good sense to kiss me there just nodding. I don’t exactly know what he was nodding to but he was pleasant so I let it go deciding I would officially cross that bridge as we approached it.

“We should work on this more.” He said getting up though he didn’t let go of my hand till I was standing at his side. “Someday I’m going to marry you.”

That made me chuckle. “I think we both know I’m not the marrying kind of girl. A great love of your life yes, but you’ll meet a good French girl and she’ll give you beautiful French babies.” I teased though it was all based in truth.

He took his turn to chuckle at me before letting go of my hand smiling like he knew something I didn’t. Funny how he could go from looking like the sweetest most amazing creature in the world to a smug fuck I really just wanted to punch.


“So Sarah tells me Kris is better.” I say from the kitchen as I cut of veggies for dinner. Without work and little else to do I took up cooking as a hobby. “She finally said yes to Kris.” I add a final chop for the stir fry I was making. It was odd how something that seemed like a chore a year ago was now a pleasure since I had someone to do it with and for.

I heard him sigh from the living room as he strolled into the kitchen sitting at the table to watch me. “Yes young love. He asked me to stand with him at the wedding, MAF and Sid too.”

I nod as the veggies hit the hot pan sizzling. “Yes, Sarah has suckered me into wearing matching dresses as well.” I hear him shift in his chair. “Spit it out. What’s on your mind?” I say with my back to him working on our dinner.

“I know you think I’ll marry a nice French girl and have French babies. What you should know is that I want you. I know you aren’t ready to talk about this but I just have to say it. I need to remind you, I want you… and if I have to go I don’t want it to be the end of us. I just got you here with me.”

I hear him sigh as I don’t respond quickly enough for him. “Max, that is all pretty and lovely. I love you more than air and need you just as much. I just don’t think you’re being logical.”

“Fuck logic.” He said with a shrug.

I smile. “I would if you tell me how. Quite the riddle isn’t it?”
He narrowed his eyes at me. “Smarty pants. It makes me want to go dig out that school girl outfit you have.”

He got up coming over to kiss my neck at the stovetop. “This isn’t the last of these conversations.” He said softly. “One day you’re going to give into me and we’ll have beautiful half French half yinzer babies.”

He got the plates out to set the table then. As much as I love him I hate how he actually made me think for a moment that I would want that. A baby in a stroller in a park, the summer flowers of St. Bruno and Max playing out a picnic blanket for us. I close my eyes banishing the thought rather than indulging in it. Dreams like that weren’t meant for girls like me.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Writery Update

No, I haven't forgotten.

No, the story isn't done.

I'm working on the next chapter but to be honest it's been a rough few weeks at work. As much as I love working on this and other stories my job, family, friends and other obligations have to come first.

No, this isn't a hiatus just a pleas for patience.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Chapter 9 - Home

I am SO SORRY this took so long! As always comments are appreciated!

I groan as I get out of bed. It had been a long week with HBO following me around, the team party, and the Caps coming up and Christmas. We were winning though so I couldn’t complain about that stuff. “I’m coming.” I said loud enough someone outside could hear me. I put on my plaid robe and stumble down the stairs. I hope it isn’t random girls. I hate that. Most people who actually know me know not to shock me in the morning. I’m all bow legged and stiff going down the stairs. As per usual at this time of day I trip sliding half down the banister into the door. “I’m up.” I groaned hearing a chuckle on the other side as the door. “It’s not funny.” I said as I right myself and throw the door open.

It was the shock of a lifetime to see her there. Things were to the point where I honestly had lost hope that she would return to me. I thought perhaps she would return to Pittsburgh but would continue on as if we had never met. Now here she was at by door looking just as beautiful as I remembered, perhaps even more so as the pangs in my heart pierced my chest. “I never… I…I…” I stuttered as I stepped back sitting on the steps in the small entryway.

“I understand if you don’t want to see me. My behavior has been extremely immature.” She shifted awkwardly on her feet my heart opening up in a way that I never thought it would again. This woman who was confidant, beautiful and once mine was standing on my stoop looking quite nervous. “If possible I’d like to talk to you, um perhaps inside where it isn’t freezing? If not that’s fine I totally understand and will walk away now.”

I just sat there looking at her unable to form words till she started to turn. “Don’t you fucking dare walk away. Never again do I want to see you walk away from me.” The words had flown out of my mouth before I had any control over them. “I mean yes, please come in.”

She smiled a little as she stepped in the door taking her scarf off and then her jacket. I didn’t remember her being this skinny but my mind could have been playing tricks. She shifted her bag seeming extra protective of it. “So…” she said looking around into the kitchen. “Isn’t your family arriving tomorrow?” she asked turning back to me with concerned eyebrows.

“Uh yeah.” I said still sitting on the step in shock she would remember holiday plans we talked about in October.

She sighed putting her bag down heading for the kitchen. I followed watching her go to the cupboard where the cleaners were kept. “You go start cleaning in your bedroom…” she turned back to the cupboard pulling out the pledge duster thing. “Take this I know you’re going to need it.”

“Mal you don’t have to…” I said as she waved the thing in my face.

“Max, I’m not letting your Mother come here with this place looking a wreck. She would want to take care of it for you and that isn’t right. So get yourself in gear. I’ll start down here. We can talk in a bit.” She said as she picked the trash out of my piles of dishes and making faces at some of the things I had been eating.

It was lunch time when she called me back downstairs. I had cleaned my bedroom and had just finished the shower, by actually showering and cleaning it.

“I know I’m an awful cook…” she said laying the two plates out on the counter. “You’re awful at grocery shopping so I think this mess of lunch is on both of us.”

I had to chuckle looking at my plate. There was a grilled cheese sandwich, coleslaw and a Twinkie which she had taken out of the wrapper to present nicely. It was so endearing I couldn’t help but smile. “I think it’s perfect.” I said taking the plates to the table where hardly anyone ate. This way we could sit across from one another rather than side by side. She brought two glasses of ice water before taking the seat across from me.

We ate in the quite for a bit before she finally started to talk. “I’m sorry I ran away.” She said looking up at me her food her green/hazel eyes seeing. “It was an extremely immature thing to do. It wasn’t just you that forced me away but years and years of shit built up inside of me.” She explained.

I nodded. “I know what I did was horrible. Beyond stupid. With this time I also know why I did it now. I didn’t do it because I didn’t want you or for any real reason people cheat. I did it because I was and still am so afraid.” I sighed putting my fork down having cleared my coleslaw from my plate. “I’m afraid because I’ve never made it this far. I’m sailing in uncharted seas.”

“Really a sailing metaphor?” she said working hard not to smile. “I know what you mean. It’s part of why I ran. I’m so afraid…” she took a shaky breath. “I’m so afraid that if I am with you like this now that if we continue on and find it not working I will cease to be. Max I’ve never ever been in this deep before. I’ve never… I’ve never needed to run because I’ve never been completely involved.”

I nodded again. “Mal, I’ve never wanted to be involved. I’ve never woke up in the morning missing someone before. I’ve never needed someone the way I need you and I do need you. I need you to call me on my shit, I need you to do things like this for me…” I said motioning to the plate. “I need you to tell me how badly my ties and shirts clash. I just need you because I’m better at everything when we’re together.”

She looked at me blinking and then went on to say things I can’t really remember listing as I had what was good about our relationship. All I know was she ended it with the most memorable thing anyone has ever said to me.

“I’m not a whole person without you.”

No one has ever said anything like that to be before. I’ve been a son, brother, friend and team mate, one night stand, crush and lover but never have I been the person that someone thought completed them. It was brilliant and scary all at the same time.

“Mal I think we should…” she didn’t give me a chance to finish.
“You think we should reboot us? If so I agree. I love you and you love me and we’re on the same page for once. I think we need to really go for it. I know you may be ready to jump off a cliff because you like to do things big. That’s you and one of the things I find so endearing.” She looked back down at her food."

She was right I was in the middle of asking her to marry me. IN my head these things sound brilliant but when she speaks reality sets in; he reality of my cheating and her running away. Those were no foundations to build a marriage on. “I think you should help me get the rest of the house ready for Christmas. I have a game tomorrow and then the next night so I think I need your help.”
She smiled and nodded. “I think we can do that.”


“So Maxime when did she come back?” My Mom asked me with coffee in hand as we sat down. The team had gone to Washington and won and now we were all on Christmas break for a few days. I had come home to find my house fully decorated (I had done a bit but it was even better now. Several batches of cookies laid out and a stocked pantry. All Mal’s doing.

“Please tell me you are asking because you are happy for me not because you wish to lecture me.” I said as I sipped my coffee still in my robe and ‘family visiting pajamas’. It was Christmas Eve and Mal would be over in hours to spend time with my family and I. I had never bashed her to my family though they knew I was suffering with her being gone.

She shrugged. “I was only asking because everything is put together in the way only a woman can. I know she makes you happy Maxime. I even feel she makes you better as a man. I am angry she was gone and inflicted so much pain on you. I am happy now that you are working things out.” My Mom always knew how to walk the diplomatic line when it came to these things.

“So when she arrives you will not be upset? I want to know what to expect.”

My Mom shook her head no. “Oh Son, no. I will never be outwardly angry with what makes you happy. I know you two belong together. I have never seen you as happy as I did this past summer. That is next to your day with the cup. I only wish neither of you had to experience this time of pain. I guess it is good that you got it out of the way now so that in the future nothing will seem as much of a challenge as the last few months were.” She reached out taking my hand giving it a squeeze. “Now go shower before she arrives. Consider shaving that stupid thing on your face perhaps?”

I couldn’t help but laugh. “She hasn’t said but I know Mal hates it too.”


“So that is what Christmas is like for normal people?” Mal asked snuggled up next to me on the sofa. Everyone else had gone to bed leaving the two of us on the sofa my arms around her and hers around me just laying together sharing the small space.

“I do not think anyone would ever call us Talbots normal but I guess this is what normal Christmas has become. We rotate hosting it each year so no one gets burnt out. We started doing that when my Mom was sick.” I explained brushing a stray piece of her hair from her eyes.

“The cancer.” Mal said which I nodded my agreement to.

“Yes. We started it then and just continued making it a new tradition. Next year we are back to Montreal.” I felt Mal nod. “You’ll love Christmas there.” I continued. “The snow is nice here but it is so special in Montreal. You’ll see.”

She smiled stretching ever so slightly to kiss my nose. It was the first time her lips had touched me in two months.

“Please, will you stay tonight? I don’t mean for sex but just stay. I don’t want to be away from you just yet.” We had exchanged our gifts earlier. Both were quite sentimental. She had gotten me a beautiful leather carry-on bag and the softest sweater I had ever felt. I had gotten her a necklace ages ago with Christmas in mind. It was a little handmade glass heart that had flecks of gold and purple in it. She had it on now and as I saw it catch the light I could see the colors reflected on her skin. It was one of a kind and beautiful just like her.

I could tell Mal was thinking over staying. “You still have clothes here. I didn’t move them.” I said in an effort to encourage her to stay.

She brought her lips to mine. “I’ll stay she whispered.” Her lips brushing against mine as she spoke. It was enough to make my whole body tingle and my cock twitch against her. I wanted her from the moment I saw her but even I knew it would take a bit of time for that to come back into the picture. “I love you Max.” she added before capturing my lips in the first kiss of our new commitment. And I loved her back. We love one another and because of that I knew everything was going to be ok, no matter what we would be ok.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Not Like the Movies

Sometimes, your characters do things you don't want them to...

London is made for the lonely. The rain and the fog should be a dead giveaway to the emotional tone of the city. If you think New York is the place to feel lonely in a crowd you’ve never been to London. In London you can feel every single ghost walk with you down the road. Native pagans who died moving rocks to build mysterious monuments, Roman soldiers who died hundreds of miles from home, plague victims, Kings consorts, hookers at the hands of a ripper, children running from air raids, terrorist bombings… all of them walk the streets of London with the lonely. The ghosts that weigh the heaviest on us forcing us to drag our feet through the market at Notting Hill are the ghosts of our own pasts. The ones that scream ‘WHY DID YOU RUN WHEN IT GOT HARD’ with every foot fall you make. They scream at you with each step when all you want to do is think of how Hugh Grant spilled his coffee on Julia Roberts just over there….

“Hi Grandpa…” I said bringing my phone from my pocket to my ear. “…yes I’ll go to dinner with you and Albert… Yes, I know he’s grandma’s friend… yes, I’ll be your buffer… ok… ok… yes I’ll be home in plenty of time to get ready… See you soon.” Ugh. Plans.

“Mallory you must come see me in Paris. I haven’t seen you in my studio since you were a child and I was still with Dior.” Albert said over our dinner table as I picked at my food. “You’re looking so well. Last I talked to your grandmother she called you pleasantly plump. All I see is a sensual young woman in her prime. You must come, I wish to make sometime for you I am already inspired. It shall be complete in two weeks. Do you remember the dresses I used to make for you?”

I smiled as best I could. A genuine smile was impossible since I left everything that could ever make me happy in Pittsburgh on the dusty bedroom floor of a certain man whom I can’t bear to name even in my own mind. “Yes I remember Albert. I’ve saved them in case I have a daughter of my own. They are timeless just like you. I don’t think I’m up for Paris though.”

“I think you should go Mallory.” My Grandpa said meeting my eyes with his own. “You need to get out of London and I know you love Paris.”

“Ah then it is set. I will measure you here and go back to my studio and create.” Albert said clapping his hands. “I continue to be inspired by you Mallory.”

All I could so was smile and sigh. I always wanted to take Max to Paris. Paris was my city and I wanted to share it with him on my terms. Going there without him just felt weird. I was left with little choice though as Grandpa gave me the evil eye saying ‘do this because I say so’. I knew it would earn me bonus points with Grandma as well which I was never in a place to pass up.

“Ok, ok. Two week from now I’ll be in your studio for a fitting Albert.” I fought back a sigh. As much as I didn’t want to go I couldn’t help but think of how beautiful whatever he made me would be.


There I stood on a familiar stoop in a familiar city dreading knocking on the door. I raised my hand only to have the door pop open.

“Ah... Albert said you would be along.” A young man said standing in the door. I don’t know if it was just me but in my opinion when a man enters the city limits of Paris he becomes instantly more attractive and this guy was case and point. “Oh please excuse me. I’m Danny. I’m I guess you could say working for Albert. Please come in.”

“He said something about men’s wear last week. I’m guessing you’re his muse?” the boy was built for a suit. He was long and lean just muscular enough through the chest and arms to not appear androgynous.

“Yes, he says I will be the face of the line.” Danny replied.

“Albert is good on his word. You’ll have your mug splashed around plenty.” I said as Daddy led me upstairs where I could hear the random music of Albert’s choice pumping through a stereo.

“Oh Mallory, stunning as always. I trust you went to Chantel Thomass?” he said raising an eyebrow.

“Yes, Albert I have all new under things just for you.” I kissed his cheek trying not to blush as this Danny character kept his eye on me as he ‘worked’ on something across the studio.

“Well then child off with your clothes!” Albert said clapping his hands and shooing me behind a screen where a robe awaited. “Do not bother with the robe Mallory everyone in the room is dying to see you next to naked.” Only Albert could make that sound like a compliment and self-esteem booster via his tone rather than a cause for embarrassment.

I stepped out tentatively my heels on my feet and new underthings feeling a bit stiff. I quietly crept across the room not exactly hiding behind anything but definitely not the confidant strides of the usual females who walked this floor. I could see Danny putting down what he was working on to join Albert as I was helped into the special made dress.

“Ah, stunning as I knew it would be. It needs to come in slightly. My Darling Mallory are you eating? I measured you just a week ago.” Albert scolded as pins were put in place and hems were checked on the beautiful black and red dress.
“If you remember Albert you measured me after dinner. Quite unfair if I do say so.” It was a lie I wasn’t eating and doing a lot of walking. I had lost a lot of weight in training with Sarah for the marathon in the spring which I quickly put back on over the summer due to general laziness and the wonderful cooking of Mama Talbot. My heart sank thinking about that glorious family I was no longer a part of. Just as quickly as it was put on the dress was removed from my body and taken for the slight alterations.

“Danny help the girl into her robe!” Albert called as he fussed over the hook closure of a garment he was working on.

Danny brought the robe over easing it onto my shoulder allowing me to tie it. “Come to dinner with me.” He whispered in my ear as the smooth silk glided over my skin. “Please, do not make me beg.” He said his French influenced but natively British accent making me a bit weak in the knees.

“I can’t.” I said closing my eyes. Even if the beauty of him was taken away in an effort to resist temptation I was left with the intensification of the smell of him. It was exotic and different with the total lack of locker room. I could only hope he didn’t see me swallow hard trying to hold my ground. I wasn’t ready for this.

“I said don’t make me beg.” He whispered as his hand moved down my arm lightly grasping my wrist giving a light pull forcing me to take a stutter step closer to him.

My heart skipped for a moment or was it my brain or was it a whole different organ system located in my lower abdomen that was doing the thinking? “Fine. Dinner.” I said opening my eyes meeting his green eyes.

“I’ll meet you at your hotel lobby at 8 wear the dress but keep your own style.” He said letting go of me going back to whatever his own work was just as Albert‘s eyes fell on me beckoning me to come to him and see what he was working on.


How does one ready themselves for their first date post broken heart? Who am I kidding there is no ‘post’ broken heart. I continue to deal with a gaping wound in my chest where Max Talbot has a plaid and neon colored grip on my heart. All of this required me to take a deep breath so I could push back tears and continue on. I had my hair back in the simple chignon, my makeup simple with flared eyeliner and a nude lip. It was about the dress and my fantastic coat. Red shoes, black clutch a deep breath and I was ready to go.

The lobby was full of people as it usually was at this time. The Lobby of a hotel in Paris was much more a gathering place rather than the US view of it being a transitional space. I scanned the room and spotted Danny in one of the chairs pretending to read the paper as he looked around the room for me. Finally he spotted me. His eyes lit up but not in the way I had grown used to over the past few months. Danny’s look held lust and desire but unlike the past few months there was no child like joy or wonder in his eyes when he looked at me.

“Mallory, you look brilliant.” He said approaching me. “I cannot wait for you to take that coat off and wow the whole restaurant with your dress.” He whispered kissing my cheek coming in close as he escorted me from the lobby his hand on my lower back guiding me out to a taxi.

Le relais de l'isle was a classic French restaurant out on the island on the perfect Paris street that screams romantic and wonderful. It would be the perfect place to take Max. I pushed the thought aside as we were seated. Danny helped me remove my coat and I could feel all eyes on me. Usually I feel self-conscious when this happens but tonight in my stunning dress I feel proud. It was only a fleeting moment of pride as took the seat which Danny pulled out for me. It was so strange to have someone else do these things for me other than Max. He made me feel beautiful in sweat pants on the sofa.

The dinner was nice as was Danny’s company. He was decidedly less creepy face to face in the candle light. He liked Paris and felt stupid for having a job that was built on him being attractive. He was secretly masochistic and wondered of people would still see him the same way if he had a scar on his face. I don’t know if it was all a big line but it was attractive and lovely and made me feel better knowing that other people questioned why they were how they were. He questioned why he was handsome in a family of average people just as I questioned why I was heavy in a family of thin people. It was one of those things it seemed like no one could understand. Then again the wine could have been helping.


I was stiff from the wine. I thought as I swung my legs to the side of the bed in my hotel room. My hair was down again big messy curls all around my bare shoulders. I got up putting my robe on before heading to the bathroom.

“Where are you going?” I head from the bed. I turn seeing Danny propped up on his elbows watching me.

“I’ll be right back.” I said pointing to the bathroom picking up my clutch on the way.

I pulled out my phone taking a deep breath before sending a single text message.

I put my phone back in my bag and finished up in the bathroom before crawling back into bed.

“Told you I’d be back.” I said as I felt lips move over my neck and the tie of my robe slowly be pulled undone.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Chapter 7 - Bed of Lies

This was hard to write because as much as I know where the story is going I still didn't want it to happen. Max & Mal write themselves and this is what happened. Be sure to let me know how pissed you are at me about this.

I sat on the edge of my bed pulling on my boxers followed by a t-shirt over my head.

“You know I won’t say anything right?” the blond who was dressing on the other side of the bed said. “I mean I know you have a girlfriend or whatever. Everyone knows now.” She said fishing her shoe out from under my desk bending down completely unaware she was showing off her undies yet again.

I just sighed picking up my phone calling my favorite taxi company. “The car will be here for you soon.” I say getting up heading down stairs with her. Her name was Liz or Lizzie maybe Eliza. I don’t even remember. She was cute, tiny, blond and overly affectionate. She was everything Mal wasn’t.

“Oh my God your dog is so cute.” She said immediately heading for Stanley who growled at her.

“I’d leave him alone if I were you. He hasn’t uh… been feeling well.” Stupid fucking dog who loved my real girlfriend, he would growl at the first random slut I brought home. “Do you need anything before you go?” I asked her trying not to just completely push her out the door.

“Nah. I’m good.” She said as the lights pulled up.

“Don’t worry about the taxi cost. I have an account. They know.” Even saying those words now made me cringe. “Have a good night.”

“Yeah, good night Max. Have a good practice tomorrow.” She said before trying to kiss me. I pulled away from her which might have been an asshole thing to do but I was already an asshole who cheated on his awesome girlfriend.
With the chick gone I sat down on the sofa by Stanley who sat there just staring me down with those big eyes judging me. Damn dog reminding me of the first time Mal was here.

“I know, I’m an asshole douche, fuck head that just screwed everything up and I don’t even know why.” I rubbed my hand over my short hair. It was the beginning of November and the season was finally starting to pull out of a huge slump as a team. “Stop looking at me like that you’re a dog you hump legs indiscriminately.” I said to him which only got him to heave a sigh at my attitude. “Yes I know I just compared myself to a dog.”

I got up picking up my phone thinking who I could call. Kris would flip out on me. He’s Mr. Committed and would give me a big lecture and as always would be right. Fucking bastard and his perfect relationship so I scrolled through my contacts looking for someone. Ah MAF. He was in a relationship but he got me. We were ridiculously close and he had put up with a lot of my shit on the road as my roommate. I dialed his number sitting back on the sofa. It was just barely 6am but a Groggy MAF answered.

“Allo?” he asked as I heard him start to walk obviously getting out of bed leaving his lovely Vero to sleep. “Max did you kill a hooker? Do I need to get a shovel?” he said in an obviously teasing tone.

“No.” I said sighing. “I just cheated on Mal.”

“Oh…” he paused obviously thinking of what to say. “Do I need to get a shovel so we can kill a hooker and put her out of her misery before Mal does?”
Leave it to Marc Andre to make me chuckle at a time like this. “Good idea but I do not think jail is fun here.”

“Ah good point.” MAF said with a sigh. “Why’d this ‘appen Max? I thought you were in love.”

I couldn’t stop from sighing. “I do not know. I was at Diesel and I really just wanted to get a drink and some music. I missed the loud music and people paying attention to me. Then it was just a bit ago and she was picking her clothes up and looking for her shoes. I know how it happened but it was like I couldn’t stop it.”
It was hell to explain. Mal was perfect and we always have amazing sex. We had been dating for nearly a year now and I was far from bored with her. She was everything I could ever want in a woman. Strong, and smart, edgy and honest… she could even take care of me when I was hurt on every level. How could I go and fuck things up like this.

“Are you bored?” I head MAF ask. He hushed his tone. “Sometimes it is easy to be tempted to stray when you’re bored.” I could imagine him checking over his shoulder making sure his Girlfriend wasn’t listening in. They had a rough patch over the summer and into the season this fall but were starting to get back on track again.
“No. I’m definitely not bored.”

“I know what it is.” He said softly. “You’re sabotaging yourself.”
Fuck him that fucker. I hate when that big grinning fuck was right it was almost as bad as when Kris was right. “How fucked up am I?”

“Well you are fucked up but this is normal. When Vero and I first got real serious I got stupid too and pushed her away.” I could hear him shifting around and then peeing my call prompting him to use the bathroom.

“How can I fix this man?” I asked tears of anger at myself starting to prick my eyes threatening to fall.

“I do not know.” He said flushing the toilet. “I guess tell the truth and take it like a man. Maybe get nunchuck lessons or something so she doesn’t murder you.” He teased.

“No… it’s going to be bad. She’s not going to hurt me, I’ve hurt her.” I said softly. “Thanks for picking up Marc. I’ll see you at practice later. Let me score in the shootout drill. I’m having a bad day.”

“No way you bastard.” He said with a laugh. “You have to work hard for your points like everyone else. I’ll see you later.”

With the call over I was left sitting on my sofa with my judgmental dog that was clearly on my Girlfriends side wondering how I could be such a fucking idiot.


I took Mal out to dinner with every intention of telling her but Mal was in such a good mood and I really didn’t want food thrown at him in public. It was starting to get cold so we took a walk before heading home all the while. The cold, her cute hat and her generally being the most perfect girlfriend were making things especially difficult. Finally we headed home where Stanley greeted Mal his tail wagging happily and continued to give me the cold shoulder. Damn judgmental dog. He was my pet first wasn’t he? It was obvious she wanted to stay the night and for a good 15 minutes while we made out on the sofa and I slowly took these sexy stockings she had on off her legs I was tempted just not to tell her but it was when Stanley got up removing himself from the room as if she was giving us privacy I knew I had to tell the truth.

“I’m sorry Mal I can’t do this.” I said getting up from the floor where I had been kneeling right in front of her kissing up her smooth legs.
“What’s wrong?” she asked more concerned for me no red flags going up in her mind making it more difficult. I wish she would just slap me and storm out knowing what I had done. That would have been easy.

I felt the tears prick my eyes again. “I….” I took a deep breath. “This morning at 5am a taxi left here carrying a blond I met a Diesel last night. I slept with her.” I said hanging my hand. “I fucked up.” I said unable to look at her. I could feel her sitting next to me unmoving. She wasn’t punching me so I thought at first this was a positive but then it set in this was so much worse. She hadn’t been expecting it. She was to the point in our relationship where she had total trust and faith in me. “Please…”

She swallowed hard enough for me to hear. Finally she moved picking up her stockings and slipping her heels on her bare feet. “Don’t call me or text me for a few days.” She said getting up from the sofa. She started to walk away but stopped putting a hand on my shoulder so softly it was scary. “I love you Max. I knew one day you would break my heart, I just didn’t think it would be today.” She bent down kissing my forehead refusing to meet my eyes though I could see hers also contained tears that were already falling. It was the most painful experience of my life to see her put on her coat and quietly walk out my front door.


“Have you heard from Mal?” MAF asked leaning across Sid’s lap on the plane to talk to me.

“No man. She hasn’t said a word. I asked Sarah and all she did was shrug and walk away. I kept pestering her and she told me to go away. “I just shrugged. “I don’t know what to do.”

Upon landing I checked my phone as usual and found a waiting voice mail. I expected it to be from my family whom I always checked it with after a flight assuming it was a decent time. We loaded up the bus and I sat quietly listening to the message.
“Hey Max. It’s me. I wanted to let you know I’m going away. I’m going to London for a Nursing conference and to spend some time with my Grandpa who is there on business.” She paused leaving my heart breaking as each second of silence passed. “Please don’t call or text me yet. I can’t handle it right now. I’ve told Sarah she can stop giving you the cold shoulder. I don’t want you to stop being friends with her because of me. I haven’t decided when I’ll be back yet. I took a leave of absence from work that starts once the conference is over next week. I’ll be in touch eventually because I care about you. You should be free though so please don’t wait around for me to come back.” I heard her take a sharp breath in as if trying to cut off a sob. “Consider yourself single if you want Max. Like I said don’t call or text me.”

The message ended and I was left stunned just as the bus pulled up to our hotel. I got off skipping the people requesting autographs and headed straight up to the room I shared with MAF once I got a key card. I texted my Parents telling them I was too tired to talk. All I could do was go to bed.