Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Chapter 29- Hat Trick

After not writing in forever... here is a new post! My only excuse is that I'm now in Grad School and I don't have a life anymore and it doesn't exactly leave me time for writing. But one of my New Year's resolutions was to finish this story. So hopefully I can get there and finish this up! This is sort of a transition chapter because I had to go back and re-read parts of my own story to remember what I had been planning.

As always, thank you for still reading this!

I woke up the following morning feeling achy but sated. One arm was tingling beneath the weight of Geno's head but I didn't care; not when I was feeling so cozy and at peace tucked against his side. In my previous relationships, the start and end of the honeymoon period passed before I even noticed what had happened. What amazed me now was that I didn't feel like a honeymoon period ever happened in this relationship and to me, that was perfect. In place of the honeymoon, it felt like Geno and I had seamlessly slid into something complicated but real. It was so real that it was enough to cause varying levels of fear and joy in me every single day.

Geno's sudden yawn and readjustment of his leg over my hip stirred me from my daydreaming. Not that I minded being his person version of a body pillow.

"What time?" he mumbled sleepily. I tried to lift my head to see the bedside clock but couldn't see beyond his head or the pillow beneath it.

"I don't know. I can't see past your big head." My comment was made teasingly and he instantly picked up the baton and ran with my invitation to banter. My giggling was suddenly muffled as he rolled his body over mine and pressed me further into the mattress.

"See now?" he said grinning down into my face. Before I could respond, he began to kiss along my eyebrows and nose, distracting me even more from our objective.

"Geno, we can't" I half-smiled and whined, instantly picking up on what he wanted to do. It was as if my body had a siren for when he wanted to get frisky and my bells were ringing at full alarm.

"What?" he replied innocently even as his hand was creeping halfway up my t-shirt.

"You have a game tonight and I need to get to my office."

"We have time." I laughed knowing that we probably didn't have time and that this was his last ditch effort to get some in the morning. He may not have been a believer in the 'no-sex before a game' rule but I was and I certainly wasn't about to be responsible for his poor performance in a game. Unfortunately my next refusal was blocked by his exploration of my weak spot on my neck.

"Not fair" I mumbled even as my traitorous body moved to better serve his lips.

I was re-considering the amount of time we had when I heard a few quiet knocks on our door. "Oh my god, someone's at the door." With a strength I didn't know I had, I managed to shove Geno off of me and scrambled to right the t-shirt I was wearing.

Geno called out in Russian and suddenly the door opened revealing a smiling Mrs. Malkin. When she called out cheerfully in Russian, Geno translated for me.

"She say 'good morning.'"

"Morning" I called out in response even though I was dying of embarrassment. Apparently neither of them thought anything of Geno and I in the same bed. I considered myself a modern woman but that didn't mean I was ready for Mrs. Malkin to walk in and make assumptions about what we were or were not doing at night. Geno obviously didn't feel the same way. In his obnoxiously unique way, he yawned and stretched throwing his left arm around me and tugging me into his side.

"She asked if you're still taking her to game tonight."

"Of course" I replied, pausing a moment to allow Geno to translate. The back and forth from English to Russian was starting to mess with my head. Mrs. Malkin could muddle her way through a conversation in English but obviously preferred to speak in her native tongue. For the umpteenth time since last night, I wondered how I was going to survive an entire game's worth of conversation with her tonight.

"Is anyone else sitting with us tonight?" I poked Geno in the side causing him to flinch and rub his side.

"What do you mean?" He retaliated by poking me back in the side.

"I mean, how am I going to talk to your Mom all night? And where are we sitting?"

"Nervous?" He asked grinning. In a playful move, he pushed me back against the pillows again and swung a leg over my legs holding me in place beneath him.

"Of course I'm nervous! What if we have nothing to talk about? What if we can't talk at all!"

Geno interrupted my tirade with laughter and placed a kiss on my cheek. "You be fine, just talk about me and my goals."

"You're not that great" I teased linking my arms around his broad shoulders and sighing. Even though I was beyond nervous to sit with his Mom at the game, Geno had this way of eliminating my doubts and making them seem foolish. Maybe it was because his thick accent still made me thiInk of him as a Cold War spy. Or maybe it was because I was obsessed with his big broad shoulders and couldn't get enough of the cute shrugging thing he did when giving interviews.  I was never going to advise him to stop doing that in interviews.

"You thought I was great last night" he grinned gently rubbing his hips against mine and looking smug. "How many times did I hear you yell it last night?"

His reminder was enough to light my face on fire and make me burrow against his neck. "I'm still embarrassed about that. Do you think we can have sex at my apartment from now on?"

"What?" Geno looked at me like everything he ever said always made sense. "They know we have sex."

He wasn't helping the situation and I tried to muscle him off of me so I could finally go shower. Leaving him laughing in bed,  I flipped him off while dragging my tired body into the bathroom for my normal routine. There was something so wrong about having to go to work on a Sunday but then again, nothing was conventional about the hockey world. Players, staff members and families all had to endure the stress and long hours of a full season and if they were lucky, the post-season. By the time that I was showered, spritzed and dressed, I was already thumbing through the emails on my phone and debating whether or not to offer Crosby up as interview bait that night. The game was being broadcast on NBC that night and all of the players hated having to do interviews with national broadcasters. Since Crosby was the most seasoned interviewee out of all of the players, he was the usual sacrificed player; plus he was who the nation wanted to hear talk. At the same time, it was good to give other less-known players some exposure. I was still considering my options when Geno poked his head through the bathroom door.

"Hey" Geno greeted interrupting my debate. "Ride with me to the rink?"

I nodded distractedly still mulling over my interview plans for the day. The team was playing Boston and both teams would have a huge number of fans watching at home.

"What wrong?" Geno asked following me downstairs and into the kitchen. We both paused to greet his Mom and remind her of the plans for the night. To save me the trouble of leaving the arena, picking her up and battling through traffic back to the arena, Geno had arranged for a car service to pick her up and bring her to the Consol. 

"Nothing" I replied, leaning around him to pop an english muffin into the toaster. It was quiet for a moment while we listened to the soft ticking of the toaster and the sounds of his parents moving around upstairs. My phone buzzed twice indicating that I had a new text message- probably from someone at the office.

My muffin  sprang up indicating that it was done but Geno grabbed it before I could put it on a plate.

"Thanks" he grinned slathering peanut butter and jelly on two sides before unceremoniously smushing the muffin together.The fact that he knew that was my favorite only made me more indignant.

"That's mine!" I said trying to grab it out of his hands. Geno easily had a foot on me in height without my heels and I jumped up trying to reach the muffin that he was now dangling over my head."You're such a bully" I said now glaring into his gleeful face. He obviously found this funnier than I did.

"You want some?" he taunted, obviously trying to get even more of a rise out of me. Unfortunately, I didn't recognize the look in his eye and soon found my mouth full of english muffin before I could think about what he was up to.

He burst out laughing at the horrified expression on my face as I tried to chew and swallow the sticky mass of peanut butter and jelly in my mouth. "You're mean" I accused him as soon as I could talk again. I tried to formulate the words necessary to communicate "screw you" but my mouth was too full of sticky peanut butter.

"Baby" he taunted pulling me into his arms. He pulled me up on my toes for a kiss and that's how his Mom found us a minute later, still liplocked and tasting each others' breakfast. She smiled brightly at us and for the second time that morning I was embarrassed about the amount of intimacy his parents were witnessing.

The level of intimacy in our relationship was still something I was adjusting to in general. No one would guess that the 6'4" lanky man in front of me was capable of so much affection on a daily basis but he was easily the most open and affectionate man I had ever known or dated. In the beginning of our relationship I could remember almost flinching when he casually touched me or brushed a lock of stray hair from my face. Now it felt weird for him to not be around and doing those things. Even though the dynamic of our relationship had clearly changed and me along with it, I still wasn't sure how to interact with him in front of other people- whether it was his friends or his parents. That was one of the many reasons I was so nervous to sit with his family again tonight. By sitting in the friends and family section with his Mom, we were making a very public declaration in front of a crowd of (most likely) curious strangers and in front of  members of the Penguins organization who also expected Geno and I to maintain a level of professionalism. It almost felt like I would be wearing three different hats at the game: Pens employee, supportive girlfriend and woman trying to impress her boyfriend's Mom.

"Hey" Geno spoke interrupting my racing mind. "Stop thinking so much, just go to game, enjoy and cheer for me."

I smirked in response to his 'cheering' comment. "So you think you're going to play well, huh?"

He tipped my chin up and gave me the cocky look that sent shivers up my spine. "Of course. You there, family there. Tonight will be good."

I laughed at how he was able to simplify a situation that I found to be so stressful and complex. "Just don't go picking a fight with Chara. I don't want to watch a giant pick on my boyfriend."

He laughed outright at that and pulled me against him. "But you could be nurse after game" he said wiggling his eyebrows and sliding his big palm over my butt making me blush and laugh. I glanced over at his Mom who had her back to us and was humming as she dug around the refrigerator.

"Thank god your Mom doesn't understand everything that you say."

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Chapter 28- Too much

Hey guys! I'm still committed to finishing my stories and I'm going to commit to this one first. I know what I want to happen, I just have to make more time for it. I still appreciate all of the comments you guys leave even when I sporadically update! I didn't do a thorough grammar or spell check but I hope you enjoy the update!

I woke up feeling refreshed after my nap. So refreshed that I realized 3 hours had passed and it was well past dinnertime. I felt even worse after I checked my phone and saw that Geno had called me 4 times already. I was the world's worst girlfriend after promising to cook for my boyfriend and his family and then sleeping through the entire time.

I had come home with the intention of taking a breather, not blowing them off. Feeling anxious, I pressed my call button and Geno answered almost immediately.

"What happened? Where are you?" he answered without saying the pre-requisite "hello."

"I'm sorry, I'm in my apartment and everything's fine."

He paused and I wasn't sure if it was because I mentioned that I was here in my apartment or if there was something else going on.

"I'm really sorry" I added. "I wanted to take a quick catnap and ended up sleeping a lot longer than I wanted to."

"Catnap? What is catnap?"

"It's just an expression" I smiled realizing that he didn't know that word yet.

"Oh. Well are you coming here?"

I heard the hopeful tone of his voice and it shamed me to think that I was the only one who was scared of moving forward in our relationship. What kind of person was afraid to accept that kind of love?

"Yes, just let me grab some things and I'll be right over." We agreed that I would be there in 30 minutes and hung up. I loaded more of my clothes and a few other comforts into an overnight bag before hauling it downstairs and into my car. The groceries I had purchased for his house were still cold in my trunk thanks to the Pittsburgh winter. All the groceries I bought reminded me that I hardly lived in my apartment anymore. I hadn't bought milk or eggs for my apartment in awhile because I either cooked at his house or we ate out.

Even though I didn't want to admit it, we did practically live together. His annoying persistence had led to the gradual demise of my self-reliance and the very reminder of my current actions made me feel like I was breaking out in a cold sweat.

I pulled into his driveway- our driveway?- feeling like a 50 year old woman in menopause. The cold air outside was an instant relief as I began to unload my car. I heard the garage door go up and seconds later, Geno's tall form emerged from the garage.

"Here, I help you" he said leaning down to kiss my cheek and steal the grocery bags from my hands. Once he stepped back and got a better look at my face, he set the bags down again and pulled me toward him.

"What wrong?" I tried to shake him off but a burly hand on my hip kept me from moving out of reach.

"Nothing." Suddenly I felt like if I met his eyes, I would spontaneously burst into tears and probably scare the hell out of him.

Instead of letting me go, he pulled me tightly against his chest for a hug, mumbling something in Russian. Since I was a little more than a foot shorter than him, my head fit perfectly against his neck where I could inhale the smell of his skin and count to 10. His hands rubbed steadily over my back in calming, reassuring gestures that made me want to groan in pleasure as he pushed the tension away.

 I wasn't sure if he knew why he was comforting me but as my body relaxed, I knew he understood that he was helping.

I felt slightly less manic than I had before and allowed myself to press a kiss to the skin I was currently snuggled against. His skin always looked and felt so smooth, despite the battles his body had endured and as a woman, I had to marvel about the fact that he never used lotion.

He countered my kiss with one of his own, planting it on the spot by my temple that always made me sigh.


I nodded and when I stepped back, he let me. He didn't ask why I had shown up at his house looking like a nut-job and instead picked up a few of the grocery bags like nothing had happened at all. Thankful for the out, I grabbed my overnight bag and a few groceries before following him inside. Our embrace had made me feel warm so the heat from the house barely registered as I stepped inside.

Natalia was boiling water for what looked like tea and when she saw me, she grabbed my shoulders and placed a kiss on both of my cheeks. "Hungry?"

I smiled this time, a real smile, and shook my head no.

"She didn't eat" Geno said behind me then spoke to his Mom in Russian. She looked between us and nodded then went to the refrigerator anyway.

"I'm not hungry" I turned and tried to talk to Geno. He ignored me and picked up my bag so he could carry it upstairs.

"Did you eat dinner?"

When I didn't answer, he shrugged his shoulders. "Then you hungry."

Since there was no point in arguing with his form of logic, I hung up my coat and found Natalia arranging leftovers on a plate for me. It made me feel guilty to watch her but I let her stack my plate up with meat and potatoes. I remembered Geno explaining that it was in the Russian culture for mothers to dote on family and that it would be rude if I tried to refuse her.

She looked up and smiled at me, once again inspiring guilt and self-loathing for having so many doubts about her son and for behaving like I did. I watched her hum and check on her tea while my food was in the microwave. I could tell that she was subtly watching me, and the game of watching each other but pretending not to, made me feel wary.

We were either psyching each other out or we were both wondering if I was worth all the trouble Geno was going through.

The microwave beeped and I jumped up to get my plate and pour myself a glass of milk. Even though I didn't feel hungry, the food looked and smelled delicious.

"Thank you" I told Natalia genuinely and slid into a seat at the kitchen table. Geno walked back into the kitchen, this time wearing his nighttime sweats, and joined me at the table.

"Good, right?" he asked, leaning in to inhale the smell of my food. He was right, it was awesome. Even though I was enjoying my food, I was still watching Natalia watch Geno and I. He was usually a touchy-feely kind of person so I didn't think twice anymore when he put his arm around the back of my chair or leaned his knee against mine. But with his Mom suddenly watching us with an indistinguishable look on her face, I wondered what we looked like or if there was something about us together that she didn't like.

Women, especially mothers, are way better at reading other women than men are. If Geno thought anything was really wrong with me or that I was suddenly second guessing every detail in my life, his mother would be sure to pick up on it faster than him. Then what would happen?

I listened to them both talk about their plans for the rest of the week, some of it in broken English and the rest in Russian. I knew that Geno had practice in the morning and a game at night but Natalia surprised me by asking if I would take her to the game and show her around the arena. I hadn't planned on going to the game since the team was only playing the Predators- not exactly a team that would cause a PR frenzy- but I agreed for the sake of proving to her that I wasn't the worst kind of animal that her son could be interested in.

I zoned out of their conversation but let the syllables of the russian language wash over me as I cleaned my plate. I was so absorbed in my own thoughts that I didn't hear Geno calling my name.

"Sorry" I said smiling sheepishly. "I'm a little tired."

Natalia grinned and said something in russian to Geno who also grinned. I still had a long way to go before I ever understood what they were saying.

"What did you say?" I asked him, feeling slightly put out by the fact that they knew I couldn't understand what they were saying. 

"Ready for bed" Geno said grabbing my hand and pulling my dirty dish away from the table. His request was barely a question and more of a statement. He put my dirty dish in the sink and barely allowed me to say goodnight to his mother before he dragged me up the stairs behind him.

"Could you at least let me walk instead of dragging me?" I half-laughed/whined. In his room, I saw that my bag was sitting on his bed unopened. Rather than let me unpack and hang up my work clothes, Geno pulled me to the bed and gently pushed me down onto the soft coverlet. Before I could move, his long body covered mine and pressed me deeper into the mattress.

"Mmmm," he mumbled pressing his lips into my neck. "I sleep like this."

"I'm not even in my pajamas" I laughed, trying not to get distracted by the feel of his chapped lips tracing over my skin.

"I can fix that" he said, grinning down at me menacingly. Even though it was very easy for me to be distracted in this position, I couldn't forget that his mother was in the house.

"Does your Mom know what we're doing?" I asked as soon as he freed my lips.

Rather than answer me he ground his hips against mine instead. The moan that slipped past my lips was enough to make sure that his Mom did know what was going on.

His name slipped out of my mouth in a mortifying moan as he ground his erection against my core once again. Because he outweighed me by 50 pounds, he easily dodged my punch to his arm and pinned my fist above my head, struggling to capture my other arm with it.  

"You must be dreaming if you think we're having sex now" I panted, struggling to shift my lower body and somehow use my legs to free myself.

It was no longer clear why I was even fighting him off since we both knew that as soon as he touched me, I was a goner. Still, we both weren't the kind of people to back down from a challenge and in that moment, it became a game of physical domination.

"Ya hochu, chtoby vy" he said smiling down into my eyes. When he looked at me like that, it made me forget to be annoyed that I had no idea what he was saying. His lips met mine again and this time the mood changed from sexual dominance to slow and careful.
He let go of my wrists so I was free to explore the wide expanse of his back while his hands moved to free me of my sweater.
He mumbled something else in russian but I was too far gone to care what he was saying. All I could concentrate on was the feeling of his skin rubbing against mine, striking me each time we touched like a match waiting to be lit on fire.
The rest of our clothes came off fast, unforgotten and spread throughout the bedroom. Our mouths were connected when he entered me and I swallowed his exhale of breath as he reached my inner depths. In our haste, we had forgotten a condom and the feeling of just him touching me in my most intimate place was like a shock to both of our senses.
When he realized, his eyes widened to almost comedic proportions. "Sorry" he breathed out, instantly moving to pull out of me. The possibility of being disconnected made my fingers dig into his shoulders in protest. 
"It's okay" I told him, shimmying my hips a little and showing him just how okay it was. "I'm on birth control too."  Just to make sure he understood, I lifted my hips up and rolled them against him.
"Der'mo" he breathed out. The vein straining against the skin of his neck told me that he was already close to the edge. One slow thrust of his hips pushed me to that edge with him. Another made me whimper and pull him closer.
Even with all of my doubts about where my life was suddenly heading, only he had the singular ability to make me completely disregard that apprehension and get naked with him. 
"Oh god. Just fuck me already" I moaned, anxious for the relief he could provide to both of us. His mouth claimed mine and he happily obliged. Even if I said it a thousand times, it would never be enough- he was too big, too pushy and too dominant in how I viewed my future. Despite this, every time he touched me, my mind forgot that it didn't know what it wanted. 
And that was okay for now because I didn't want to think anymore.  

Monday, March 28, 2011

Chapter 27- Translations

Its been a shameful amount of time since I've updated but as usual, my academic life is crazy. I'm not done with this story and it will get finished eventually. Here's a chapter to tide you over for a little bit. I'm hoping to have another one up this week or early next. Ignore my typos and spelling mistakes please :)

Also, thank you so much for your comments! That's why I wrote this chapter because I saw that I was randomly still getting comments. You're all great!

Waking up was a less than pleasant experience. Not only was the alarm shrilling in my ear but Geno had left long before me and his side of the bed was cold. I hit the snooze button and wondered why I had even set it in the first place. Not only was it a Saturday but I had absolutely nothing to do today except go visit the hospital.

Since his heart attack, things had been relatively quiet. Geno was going back into the lineup on Tuesday night in a home game against the Thrashers. Everyone, including a team psychologist had insisted that he sit out at least a week while his Dad's health slowly stabilized. To his chagrin, I had backed this decision and made myself very clear that I wasn't going to visit him if he ended up in the hospital too because of reckless play on the ice.

The alarm began beeping again signalling that it was time for me to wake up and finally get my butt out of bed. In the bathroom, I yawned and stretched, my eyes slowly focusing on a post-it note on the mirror. His crooked handwriting, so unused to western-style characters, made me smile as I read, "Hospital at 12?"

Over the past week, we had still been operating under the guise of fiance and fiancee so that I could get past the nursing staff as a non-family member. Geno smirked every time a nurse made a cutesy comment about us or winked. Even Geno's Mom seemed to be enjoying our lie and took every opportunity to let me know that she approved. It was sweet of course but it also worried me that she seemed to be taking our new, fake status as something that would be permanent in the immediate future. If I didn't even want to permanently live with her son yet, then how did she expect us to get engaged any time soon?

Not to mention, I worried that other people would start to gossip about our "engagement." The nurses were nice to us but that didn't mean that they weren't gossipping about us on their breaks or when they went home to their families.

Out of necessity, I shoved the worrisome thoughts out of my head and turned on the shower so that I could get ready for the day. Feeling how light the bottle of shower gel had gotten, I made a mental note to buy more the next time I stopped at the store.

Things had been so busy lately between going to work, going to the hospital and taking care of both Geno and his Mom, that I had been staying at Geno's house for the past week. I hadn't been back to my own apartment in 3 days and as a result, my shower gel and shampoo had moved into his shower. Because the bottle had suddenly gotten a lot lighter, I suspected that a certain someone was using it as well. It seemed that we were sharing a lot lately.

Even if he was using my shower gel, I drew the line at us sharing an underwear drawer. As much as I wanted to make sure he understood that this living arrangement wasn't entirely permanent, I didn't want to make things more complicated right now by causing tension. Having our underwear all jumbled together in a drawer signified that our lives were completely intertwined.

In the practice of keeping things as simple as possible, I didn't want to bring it up- I just wanted to assert myself in other ways. Aka, keeping our underwear separate. If I could do that, then I could keep both of us from moving too quickly in this relationship.

A couple of hours later and one half of a tuna sandwich later, I felt heavy hands drop onto my shoulders from behind then a chaste kiss on my cheek.

"What? You couldn't wait?" Geno asked pulling out the chair next to me in the hospital cafeteria.

"You're 20 minutes late and I didn't eat breakfast" I explained passing him a napkin for the sandwich he was already eating without my permission.

"Papa had more test" he said in between frowning at my sandwich. "Is this tuna?"

"Yes, I would have told you if you had asked me" I grinned suddenly remembering how much he hated tuna sandwiches. He happily gave it back and sipped my soda instead.

"Tests were good." He commented after a contented lull in conversation between us.

"What kind of test was it?"

He frowned then and I knew that he had either forgotten or didn't really know what it was. I squeezed his hand instead of trying to probe him about it. "It's okay, I'll ask the nurses when we go up there."

Instead of being annoyed at me, he gave me a goofy smile and kissed the back of my hand lavishly. "See? Is why I need you." His expression went from confused to mischievous so fast that I barely had time to keep up.

"Yeah, yeah" I said smiling from his unexpected kiss. Even I wasn't immune to his goofy charm it seemed.

We waited another 5 minutes before walking hand in hand back to the elevators. After waiting for what seemed like forever, an elevator finally arrived and was blissfully empty.

He immediately pulled me to his side and pressed a not-so-chaste kiss to the sensitive spot beneath my ear. "It was nice this morning" he spoke quietly. I felt a shiver creep up my spine, feeling like we were little kids sharing a secret, not full grown adults standing in an elevator.

"What was nice?" I turned so that we were facing each other and slid my arms around his solid torso. I could smell the detergent on his shirt and his cologne from earlier in the morning.

"You, in my bed." I smiled against his lips even though it felt like he was leading us somewhere that I didn't want to go right now.

"It should happen more often" he added. When I opened my eyes he was staring down at me with that light in his eyes that always made me wary.

"We are together almost every night that you're not on the road with the team" I reminded him.

"Almost. Every. I don't like those words. Not good enough."

The elevator dinged and I stepped back out of reach. "Well, then tell Gary Bettman that. It's not my fault that hockey takes you away from Pittsburgh so much." He shook his head but let the subject drop. Both of us knew what the other one was up to. Him taking 2 steps forward and me taking the calculated 2 steps back.

"Ready?" He asked, already reaching for my hand before I could grab his. As we walked past the nurses station, I noticed that they all pretended not to watch us as we passed. Geno would never notice but I saw at least 3 stop and flat out stare at him as he walked. Since he was usually pretty oblivious to the female attention that he got in public, I knew that there was no reason for me to feel even remotely jealous. The only thing that pissed me off was the was the look that I got from the little blonde nurse pretending to do her paperwork.

She usually made a big deal out of letting me pass because I wasn't technically a family member- "fiancee" or not. Really, she was just being a bitch. I hadn't seen this kind of cattiness since the one-day sale at Barney's in New York. Weren't Pittsburgh girls supposed to be down to earth and sweet?

"In Russia we say she's bitch" Geno mumbled to me as soon as we were on the other side of the ICU doors.

He grinned at the astonishment on my face while it took me a minute to process that he was more observant that I thought. "You saw her?"
"Hard to miss" he smiled fending me off before I could slap his arm again. "She's obvious. Not a secret."

"I thought you didn't notice stuff like that!" He never seemed to notice people staring at him in the grocery store or the few places we went out together. Usually we frequented those places because people were nice and ignored us too. Still, that didn't completely weed out all of the female attention he garnered.

Before he could answer, his mother appeared around the corner, presumably to see who was laughing hysterically in the ICU.

She greeted us both in English and said something to Geno that sounded like it would be a scolding. Although I could never be sure since everything in Russian sounds more harsh than English. Geno shrugged and replied then at my look of annoyance filled me in on what she had said.

"She say we laugh too loud."

In his room, Mr. Malkin was sitting up and poking at the hospital food on his tray. It didn't look very appetizing but the last time that Geno or I had tried to sneak a real sandwich in to him, it didn't go over so well with his doctor.

He grinned broadly at our entrance and immediately tried to play on our heartstrings with complaints about the food.

"Too bad. It's good for you" I told him, taking a seat in the chair next to his bed so that I could squeeze his hand. It was pretty hard not to like this man with his constantly upbeat attitude and way of smiling about everything.

He squeezed my hand back but I could tell that his usual strength still wasn't there. When I first met him, his hugs had felt like I was being squeezed by a grizzly. Now his squeeze felt as light as a child's.

"They move him this afternoon" Mrs. Malkin announced, seeming relieved but exhausted at the same time.

I let myself fade into the background as they began to confer in Russian. It was obviously more comfortable for them to speak in their native tongue but it felt like I was intruding on something private and just for the family's ears only.

After a half hour of reading an old magazine, I excused myself to go check my messages on my phone. The mood in the room had turned serious and I noticed that Geno's eyes frequently landed on me while he spoke. My name was never mentioned specifically but it isn't hard to know when someone's talking about you- Russian language or not.

I passed the nurses station again and luckily the bitchy blonde from before was gone, leaving me to make my way down to the visitor's sitting room so that I could scroll through my emails. Even though it was the weekend, the emails never stopped flowing through to my phone. 

"I thought I find you here."

Just as I was reading through an email from Coach Bylsma himself, Geno poked his head in the door with his mother in tow.

"Sorry, I just wanted to clear out some emails."

"My husband sleep." Mrs. Malkin added. Her coat was already on and she looked tired. It looked like we were leaving so soon for her sake more than Mr. Malkin who would probably end up watching TV rather than sleeping.

"Okay then, let's go." I slipped my coat over my own shoulders and gathered up my purse. Outside, I waited with Mrs. Malkin while her son went to get his car. When he pulled up, I helped get the door open since she looked asleep on her feet already.

"Are you following?" Geno asked leaning forward to talk to me across the passenger seat.

I shook my head no. "I want to pick up some groceries and check up on my apartment." Even though this was a reasonable excuse for anyone to make, he didn't look pleased. He was never satisfied with anything other than his way and the word "apartment" was enough to annoy him anytime I mentioned it.

"I'll be back to make dinner and stock your refrigerator" I reminded him. Silently we both knew I was saying "drop it" instead.

When their car was out of sight, I began the trek to where my car was parked in the massive parking lot. I couldn't tell which emotion was motivating me when I drove to the Giant Eagle that was 20 more minutes away from where I usually went and then took a 2 hour nap back in my apartment just to prolong my afternoon: stubbornness or fear.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Chapter 26- Elbow in the Ribs

Sorry it's been awhile! Also, everyone should check out Penslove25's new story "Use Somebody." It's really cute so far and a good read if you need something new! Link: She's a really good writer and deserves to have more followers!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Chapter 25- Sort Of

So I had a little inspiration and I channeled it into figuring out where I want the rest of the plot for this story to go. Look forward to more posts coming up soon!

Also, if anyone has any good blogger story recommendations, please pass them along! I've been looking for a new story or two to follow :)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Chapter 24- Touch and Go

I've been trying to get this right for over a week. Hopefully it lives up to my expectations for it!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Chapter 23- Mama Knows Best

Thanks for all of the hockey watching suggestions, ladies! A few of you asked where I am studying for the semester and I'm in Barcelona. I also wanted to thank all of you for your lovely comments. It means so much to me that you guys still keep up with what I write!

P.S. This one's short because I didn't want to lump one chapter together and not have it flow well together.