Author: HaloFin17 PM
An unexpected visitor follows Bobby home shortly after Evelyn’s death. Can the brothers learn to be as warm and welcoming as their mother always was? Mostly fluff, centered around Jack and Bobby. Rated for some language. NO slash.Rated: Fiction T - English - Family/Humor - Bobby M. & Jack M. - Chapters: 2 - Words: 5,277 - Reviews: 24 - Favs: 37 - Follows: 5 - Updated: 09-11-07 - Published: 09-05-07 - Status: Complete - id: 3769186
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Summary: An unexpected visitor follows Bobby home shortly after Evelyn's death. Can the brothers learn to be as warm and welcoming as their mother always was? Mostly fluff, centered around Jack and Bobby. NO slash.
Disclaimer: I may love 'em to death, but I don't own any of the Mercers, and I never will. Dang, life really isn't fair, is it?
Author's Note: Well, I can't begin this story without a shout-out to Torilei who has continually insisted that I need to write more fun and fluffy Four Brothers fics and has already helped me with some ideas for this one. This one's for you, Tori-kins, you're awesome! So now, everybody please enjoy, and feel free to review!
Chapter 1: Little Monster
The distinct 'click' of the front door being opened echoed throughout the living room, and Jack Mercer looked up from strumming his beloved guitar at the sound. The door swung shut again.
"There!" an unmistakable booming voice reached his ears. "Ya happy now?"
Not knowing whether his oldest brother was addressing him or not, Jack still could not resist answering, "Well, I was, Bobby, but now you're home."
"Shut up, Jack, I wasn't talking to you!" Bobby immediately shot back, still in the doorway beyond his youngest brother's line of sight. "Why do you always have to be such a smart-ass?"
"I learned from the best, Bobby," Jack responded with a stifled laugh, for no statement could have better proven the older man's point.
Bobby likewise caught the humor, but he only sighed despairingly. "And there ya go again. You're hopeless, Jackie, ya know that?"
"Yeah, I know." The lean nineteen-year-old still smiled at his brother's habitual teasing, but his subdued reply suggested that this latest jest might have struck just a little too close to the truth for comfort. Sometimes he really did feel hopeless, a feeling that was hardly aided by their mother's recent passing.
Finding his eyes brimming again with unbidden tears, the youngest Mercer decided to change the subject. "So who are you talking to then?" he asked, glad his eldest sibling couldn't see him brush away the hot drops of saltwater from his stormy blue eyes.
"I'm talking to this…this…thing!" Bobby continued on his verbal rampage, wholly unperturbed and unaware of any emotional turmoil his kid brother might be experiencing. But God only knew how Bobby was going through the exact same torment, night after night.
"This damn…creature won't leave me alone!" And Bobby Mercer, the legendary 'Michigan Mauler', finally made his grand entrance into the living room, eyes alight in all their righteous fury.
Jack frowned as he placidly observed yet another of Bobby's tantrums, still completely clueless as to what had so upset his oldest brother, but the enigma was soon explained when the younger Mercer glanced down. Bobby had stormed right past where Jack sat on the couch with his guitar, opting instead to blaze an angry trail into the kitchen. And there tripping right at his heels was a tawny alley cat.
Jack couldn't help but burst out laughing at the sight, and he immediately got up to follow the mismatched pair into the kitchen. Few things in life were worth parting with his guitar over, but this was bound to be one of them. He entered the kitchen to find Bobby glaring daggers down at the intruding feline, while the cat merely looked back up at him expectantly with wide, hungry green eyes.
"Oh look, Bobby, you've made a friend," Jack teased his sibling with a mischievous grin, still chuckling even though he knew it would only irritate Bobby further. Or was it perhaps that he still chuckled because it would only irritate Bobby further?
Bobby redirected his daggers to Jack's face. "This is not my friend! I hate cats, Jackie, you know that."
"Well, why'd you let him in then?" Jack pressed, enjoying every moment of seeing his brother lose his head over nothing more than a stray cat.
"I didn't want to!" Bobby protested. "He followed me all the way home from the drugstore, even came up right behind me when I was about to open the door."
The tall blonde crouched down beside the small cat and began to scratch its head, hearing a rewarding purr as the feline leaned into his hand.
"So he forced his way in, then, is that it?"
"Exactly," Bobby answered succinctly and leaned back against the counter as he watched his brother now run his hand down the cat's striped back.
Jack grinned wickedly. "And it has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that he's cute, cold, and starving, and you just happened to take pity on something for once in your life?"
"Absolutely not," the older man answered sharply with a swift yet playful cuff at his sibling's blonde head. "Yeah, he's hungry all right, Sweetheart, and you'd better watch out before he bites your hand off."
Jack rolled his eyes. "Leave it alone, Bobby, he's not vicious."
"Easy for you to say now, Princess, but just wait 'til he claws up your pretty face. Then I wanna hear you tell me he's not vicious."
"He's not, Bobby. And come on, even you have to admit he's kinda cute."
"Cute?" Bobby echoed in sheer disgust. "Real men don't use the word 'cute', ya Fairy. And even if we did, it wouldn't be in reference to that little monster."
He thrust his finger out in the cat's general direction to better prove his point, and Jack sighed with a deliberate shake of his head.
"Bobby, if I'm hopeless, then you're impossible!"
The older Mercer only shrugged, for they both knew there was plenty of truth buried within that particular statement, as well.
"So are you gonna feed him, or what?" Jack finally asked impatiently.
Bobby threw his hands up in the air. "I don't know what the hell you're supposed to feed a cat," he exclaimed, obviously flustered. "Wanna sacrifice your ear, Sweetheart? I'm sure he'd love chewing on that!"
"Ever heard of milk, Bobby? Ya know, that white stuff that comes out of cows?"
If looks could maim, the blonde tips of Jack's spiked hair would surely have been singed by the fiery glare Bobby leveled in his little brother's direction.
"Fine, Smart-ass, I'll give him some milk. Though I still think your ear would be tastier." Bobby reached up to retrieve a bowl from the cupboard and filled it with milk from the fridge.
"Here, ya little monster," he growled, "drink up."
The cat padded over to the bowl at Bobby's feet and began drinking with a relish. It soon finished and looked back up at him, still greedily licking its lips.
"You want more?" the oldest Mercer stated in disbelief. "Fine, but this time, I'm gonna spike it with some Vodka – just to see what happens."
"Bobby, wait!" Jack interrupted him from across the kitchen. "Don't waste booze on the cat – Angel'll kill you when he gets back from Sofi's. Besides, this'll be better for him, anyway."
Only then did Bobby notice the can-opener in his brother's hand. "What're you giving him?" he inquired, frowning.
"Tuna," was Jack's simple answer as he spooned the fishy contents into the cat's now empty bowl. The feline immediately inhaled his new food and was halfway done before Jack had even finished emptying the can.
"Tuna?" Bobby groaned in dismay. "Jack, I was gonna eat that, you idiot!"
The blonde shrugged, wholly unsympathetic. "Too bad, Bobby, I guess you'll have to find something else. Why don't you have something healthy? Like an apple."
"Healthy?" Bobby scoffed. "And this is coming from someone who smokes two packs a day?"
"Hey, I only smoke half a pack, at most," Jack protested. "Stop trying to be Mom, already."
The bickering abruptly died then, and the only sound that could be heard throughout the kitchen was the scraping of the cat's rough pink tongue as it licked up every possible molecule of tuna from the bowl.
"So," Bobby offered after a pained moment of awkward silence, "what're you makin' for dinner?"
Jack frowned. "What makes you think I'm cooking?"
"You always cook, ya little Fairy."
"Yeah, but what makes you think I'd cook anything for you?"
Bobby grinned and reached up to playfully ruffle his sibling's mess of hair. "Cuz I'm your brother, and you love me, Jackie, that's why."
Jack angrily pushed his brother's hand away. "Shut up, Bobby! Believe me, the only one who loves you right now is that cat."
Both brothers looked down then, and sure enough, the tawny feline was sitting dutifully at Bobby's feet, gazing up at him with adoring emerald eyes.
"Hmph," Bobby grunted after finally losing to the cat in a tense staring contest. He turned back to his brother. "So what are you makin'?"
"I was thinking of just frying up some hamburgers," Jack divulged at last.
Bobby clapped him on the shoulder. "I knew you'd come through, Cracker Jack. Let me know when they're ready!" And with that, he left the kitchen and flopped down on the couch in front of the TV.
"Bastard!" Jack called indignantly after him, but he couldn't help noticing with a sly grin that the cat had eagerly followed Bobby's every move out of the room and was now up on the couch with him.
"Hey, what do you want from me?" Bobby exclaimed hotly when the cat started crawling onto his lap, and he tried vehemently to push the offending feline away. But it kept coming back to him, approaching from all different angles until it finally caught its favored human off guard by descending from the top of the couch and flopping limply on the vexed man's lap.
"Aw, he loves you, Bobby," Jack teased from the kitchen while he began to flatten the raw hamburger meat into patties.
"I don't know why, cuz I sure as hell don't love him!" He looked down at the furry form on his lap. "What am I supposed to do with this, Jackie?"
"Pet him, I guess. You're his favorite, after all."
Bobby sighed, exasperated, and lifted up the cat with two hands, holding it at arms' length away from his face.
"Now listen, you," he began, carefully emphasizing every word. "I don't want you. Understand that? I do not want you!"
But the cat only stared back at him, its head tilted slightly to one side while its ears twitched back and forth.
"You hear me?" Bobby asked again, giving the creature a little shake for good measure. "I don't want you. Now, scat!" He set the nimble feline none too gently down on the floor and shooed it away with his toe. "Go watch Martha Stewart cook, maybe he'll give ya some more tuna."
"No, I think that was the last can," Jack's voice came from the kitchen.
"Figures," Bobby muttered and switched the channel. Too bad he couldn't find any hockey on this time of day – only boring baseball. But before long, the tantalizing smell of browning meat drifted into the living room, and Bobby's stomach grumbled loudly.
"You about done in there yet, Cracker Jack?" he called.
"Yeah, they're ready," Jack answered, and Bobby jumped up from the couch and hurried into the kitchen.
Jack watched his brother eagerly scoop a hamburger up onto his plate and snorted softly.
"Ya know, you really shouldn't give that cat such a hard time, Bobby," he said. "You're just as desperate for food as he is."
"Shut yer mouth, Fairy, I don't wanna hear it," Bobby scolded him, turning away from his food a moment in order to better access the refrigerator and the hidden wealth of condiments there within. But by the time he turned around, ketchup and pickle jar in hand, his plate was empty.
Meanwhile, behind him, Jack finally unleashed the hysterical laughter that he had been struggling almost violently to contain.
"I think he got a little more than some tuna, Bobby," the youngest Mercer managed to say around his gasping breaths of laughter.
Bobby Mercer glared balefully down at the lean creature that sat on the floor beneath him, licking its lips contentedly yet returning his stare with the most innocent round eyes. And when Bobby Mercer had been robbed of his dinner, there was only one thing to be said.
"Damn little monster!"
Author's End Note: Don't worry, this isn't the end. I've got one or two more chapters for this story, however long it takes for me to get everything in. But I hope you like it so far, talk to you all later!