Chapter 5  

The meal was eaten with little conversation exchanged among the group.  As Leighanne proceeded to clean the table off.  Kevin watched and then smiled at Brian.  “You’re lucky.”

“So are you Kev,” A.J. broke in on the exchange.  “You just don’t know it yet.”

Nick’s loud cough stopped A.J. from making further comments.  “So Kev what do you want to do now?”

Kevin looked at all of them as they stared back at him.  “You didn’t leave me much to do.  My house is clean, my laundry is done.  Somebody went shopping too.  Are you guys for hire?” he chucked as looked around.

“You washed enough of my dishes,” Nick laughed.

Kevin shook his head back and forth at him, “That I did Kaos, that I did.”

“Let’s watch some movies,” Howie spoke in a much to happy tone.

As Leighanne walked by him she elbowed him in the back of the head.  “Yes why don’t we,” she whispered in an unhappy tone at him.

“Sounds good.  Unless of course you guys planned on leaving.”  Kevin was hoping that they would be but knew better.  It would be a few days before any of them would let him out of their sight.

“Sure, we are Kev,” A.J. spoke sarcastically.  “Trust me running this little intervention for you is my complete pleasure.”

Kevin winced slightly knowing why A.J. had spoke to him in that manner and tone.  Kevin had basically confronted Bone five years earlier in Boston for the same thing.  “I’m sorry Bone,” Kevin apologized knowing now how it felt to have the shoe on the other foot.

A.J. grinned from ear to ear, “Don’t be.  It was necessary and so was this.”

Kevin didn’t reply as he got up and walked to the den.  He opened the cabinet and looked at the videos and DVDs inside.  They had all seen them at least once or twice before.  “There’s nothing here we haven’t watched.  Who wants to take a ride with me?”

Nick and Howie both offered to go.  Kevin looked toward A.J. seeing if he wanted or felt he needed to go with them.  A.J. sunk down onto the couch.  “Don’t pick nothing sappy.  We’ve had enough sap for one night.”

Kevin pursed his lips together at the off-handed remark as he grabbed his keys.  “Dildo,” he mumbled as he walked out the door.

The remaining three listened to the engine start on Kevin’s truck.  They watched as he pulled out of the garage and headed down to the road

“I can’t believe D,” Leighanne moaned loudly.  “Can he get anymore obvious.”

“Hey Kevin doesn’t know what’s going on so don’t worry about it.”  Brian spoke.

They made a little plan to pull a tape switch when Kevin returned.  Leighanne would be in charge of putting the tape in after A.J. switched them.  If Kevin was going to go off he wouldn’t do it towards Leighanne.

Twenty minutes later Kevin, Nick, and Howie walked back into the house.  A.J. grabbed the tapes, “Whatcha’ got.”  Quickly he flipped open the box and dropped the tape to the floor.  As he bent to get it he bumped it under the couch.  When the tape was retrieved, it wasn’t the movie.

“Damn Bone, be careful,” Kevin warned him as A.J. tossed the tape to Brian and he in turn handed it to Leighanne.

Leighanne put the tape in as she held onto the remote control.  “Everyone get comfy,” she smiled as she held on to the remote control.

“Leigh, toss me the remote,” Kevin spoke as he settled in the chair.

Leighanne frowned at him.  “Why you don’t trust me with your toy?” as she pointed it at the large screen television and pushed play.

Kevin huffed slightly, “It’s my damn house.”

Nick chuckled slightly knowing that Kevin wouldn’t ruffle Leigh’s feathers over such a small thing.  Any other time he probably would have but not after what she had just done for him.  He leaned over to Howie, “Damn, large screen again.”  Howie giggled at Nick as he watched his eyes roll around in his head.

Brian, A.J., and Leighanne shot death glares at the two sniggering fools.

The tape began to play and they watched Kevin watch the tape.  A soft, “Jesus,” was heard coming from him as the baby was born.  Not another word was uttered from him as he watched the entire tape play.  He motioned Leighanne over to him and she handed him the remote.  She knew what he wanted to see.  She saw the spark of recognition go off in his eyes when they showed the little girl blowing out the candles on the cake.

Kevin sat for over an hour hitting rewind, play, and stilling the shots on the tape.  “This ain’t a rental,” he finally spoke as his left hand shot out to his side.  His fingers were grasping in the air at nothing as he got up and walked to stand in front of the T.V.

A.J. spoke as he stood from behind Kevin, “Leave her alone we’re here to work.”

“Shut the fuck up Bone, you don’t understand.  Hand me the phone.”  Kevin hissed.

A.J. wasn’t going to back down.  He wasn’t sure what went down between Kevin and Cass but he knew that Kevin understood what the implications were playing in front of him on the television.  “What for?”

“Give me the damn phone I have to make reservations,” Kevin spoke as he turned and settled his eyes on A.J.

“No need to bro,” as A.J. walked over to the desk and back.  He handed Kevin an envelope.

Kevin grasped the object and then opened.  The envelope contained a one way ticket to Billings, Montana.

“I don’t even know if she is still there.  I’m not sure what to do, maybe it is, maybe not,” Kevin spoke as he stared at the ticket.

“Well I guess we are all going to go and find out.”  A.J. grinned as he placed his hand on Kevin’s trembling arm.  “You have two hours to get ready.”

Kevin stuffed the envelope in to A.J.’s hand.  “Not enough time,” he said excitedly as he bolted from the room.

The rest of BSB and Leighanne looked at A.J.  Brian was the first to speak.  “How did you do that?  You didn’t know if we could even pull this off.  What do you mean we’re all going?”

A.J. lit his cigarette and headed towards the door.  “I would do anything for my brother, he saved me once, I owed him.  Yes we are all going.  Except Leighanne, she has to watch the kids.”

“Thanks a helluva lot A.J.,” Leighanne yelled at him.

“Relax Leighanne, I have a feeling you’ll meet her real soon.  I’m going to my house and get everyone’s stuff.  You guys stay with him and keep an eye on him.”

A.J. proceeded out the door.  Once in his truck he took a deep breath and sighed.  “Thanks God, I needed your help on this one.  I need to keep control of my emotions and keep this going.  Kevin needs something good in his life right now.  Even if he gets what I wanted.”  Turning the key on the ignition he backed out of the drive.

Leighanne quietly waited awhile and then walked to Kevin’s bedroom and knocked on the door.  She heard him yell come in, so she did.  She looked at him and it was like he was reborn but still torn.  “Kevin I’m really sorry about being so sneaky about this.  I hope you can forgive us.”

“You’re already forgiven Leighanne.  I much rather my brothers kick my ass then anyone else,” he smiled as he packed his suitcase.  “I’ll be honest.  I’m very excited, elated actually.  But I’m also pretty freakin’ pissed at Cass.  Well I’m not pissed at Cass yet, but if that little girl is mine and she didn’t tell me, then I’m going to be really freakin’ pissed.  If that is my kid and no one told me then there will be hell to pay for it.”

Kevin’s rapid succession of words threw Leighanne for a second.  “Kevin she must have a reason or she would have said something along time ago.  She could have made your life a living hell and she didn’t.”

Kevin stopped in tracks and looked at Leighanne, “True, where did the tape come from?”

Leighanne hesitated for a moment and then Brian appeared at the door.  “It came from Abe with this note.”  Brian handed the note and Kevin read it.

“What do we need to figure out?  Who the kid belongs too?  I’m sorry Abe is gone, I liked the old guy.  Cass must have taken it hard.  Sounds like her brother split out of there too.”

Kevin’s mind went back in time to a day he had a conversation with Abe.  Kevin had come from the side of the barn to hear Gary and Abe talking about Cass.  Kevin froze and listened to Gary complain to Abe about Cass going out at night to try and catch that wild mustang.  The conversation went on to talk about the boys being at the ranch and how uncomfortable Cass was having them here.  That morning Cass had been extremely obnoxious to Kevin at breakfast.  She served him burnt food intentionally.  Gary reminded Abe that if the boys left then they were screwed because the management company wanted the boys out there for the entire four weeks or they wouldn’t get the bonus offered to the them.  They needed the money to keep the ranch afloat.

Abe laughed at Gary’s little pious speech and informed him that he was just upset that his big sister had a raging set of hormones again.  Abe said that he would try and talk some sense into her when she came in from the pastures.

Kevin covered his mouth to stop the laugh from popping out.  He watched Gary return to the house and then Kevin heard Abe’s voice speak directly to him.  “Kevin stop hiding and eavesdropping on people’s conversations.”

Kevin came from beside the barn, slightly embarrassed at being caught in this situation. 

Seeing that Kevin was indeed ashamed Abe laughed at him, “No harm done Kevin.”  Abe sat on the stool whittling away on a piece of wood with his pocketknife.  “I know what you heard and I suggest you keep it to yourself.  Don’t go holding this over Cass’s head.”

“I won’t,” Kevin answered with a mischievous grin.  “What did you mean by again?”

“Well now Kevin, it’s really none of your business but since I’m old and I have no one to talk to, I’ll tell you.  Cass was engaged to my son Gage.  They were high school sweethearts, been together since she was sixteen years old.  Cass’s parents died her senior in high school.  I was hers and Gary’s legal guardian.  She didn’t want to lose her parents place so we up and moved here with her.  We’ve lived here for seven years now.”

“Where’s Gage?”  Kevin asked as he intently listened to the old man speak.

“He died chasing down that same damn horse that she’s trying to catch.  He went up there to get that horse for her to ride in the rodeo.  The horse stomped him to death.”

Kevin didn’t know what to say to the old man.  “Jeezus!”  Kevin exclaimed.

“It’s been two years now Kevin.  Nothing will bring him back.  But Cass better leave that damn horse alone or it’s going to kill her too.  That horse is as ornery as they come and he’s a killer too.  Sometimes I think that’s what she wants.  It’s sad to see her like this.  She’s only twenty-five years old, she’s just a baby.”

Kevin absently kicked the rocks at his feet.  In the three days they had been there Cass had been nasty to all of them.  I guess he knew now why.  He did manage to garner the information that if they left Cass would loose it all.  Not being able to tell the guys was going to be difficult.  They had already began talking about wanting to leave.  Maybe there was a way that he could approach her directly without her knowing that he had talked to Abe.  If he could get her to talk to the guys a little nicer maybe they wouldn’t want to leave.

“Thanks Abe,” Kevin muttered as he stuffed his hands in the back pockets of his jeans and headed for the house.

“Yo, Kevin are you with us,” he heard Brian speaking.

Kevin shook off the memory, “Yeah.”

Brian stood there wanting to ask all kinds of questions.  Kevin could tell by the look on Brian’s face that it had been eating at him.  Kevin had been so steadfast about everyone leaving her alone that it became a serious issue with them.

Kevin zipped up the suitcase and pulled it off the bed.  “We’ll talk when we get there Bri.”

“We sure will,” Brian muttered as he followed Kevin down the hall to the foyer.  Kevin paced as he waited for A.J. to return.  As A.J. pulled into the driveway Kevin walked out the door.  He threw his suitcase in the back of the SUV and climbed in.

“A little anxious to get to the airport,” A.J. chuckled as he watched everyone follow Kevin out the door and Leigh lock the house up with A.J.’s key.

“Shut up Bone,” Kevin mumbled as he looked out the window.

“Yes sir!”  A.J. chuckled as they backed out of the drive and headed for the airport.





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