|Once a crow
Author: Dareia PM
Jo haven't been in Charming for 10 years. She swore she would never go back but she has to when her mother dies. Will she be able to leave again or she missed her old life, family, friends more than she is willing to admit? JAX/OCRated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Drama - Jax - Chapters: 20 - Words: 24,151 - Reviews: 123 - Favs: 102 - Follows: 133 - Updated: 11-16-12 - Published: 08-27-10 - Status: Complete - id: 6275362
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
I know, I know, I still have 4 other stories to continue but I couldn't help it, I got obsessed with Sons of Anarchy and had to do something about it. But no worries, I already wrote 5 chapters, I know where I'm heading with this, plus I wrote the last chapter, too because I have some serious problems with endings and I tricked myself with that :LOL:
Anyway, I hope you will like my story. I will update once a week. Reviews are highly appreciated.
I DO NOT OWN ANYTHING BUT THE STORY LINE, JO AND PETER.
Some people believe that ravens guide travelers to their destinations. Others believe that the sight of a solitary raven is considered good luck, but a group of ravens predicts trouble ahead. And a raven right before battle promises victory.
Jo held her breath as they passed by the sign „Welcome to Charming". She stared out the window of the car, her head leaning against the glass, watching the buildings, old memories popping up in her head, one by one. Nothing had changed since she left 10 years ago. The dusty streets, the people walking down, the grocery, the barbershop… All the same.
„Are you alright, honey?" Peter, her fiance watched her concerned.
Jo barely heard what he said as they passed the Teller-Morrow garage. Her heart beated faster, her palm sweated as she gazed the old garage full of motorcycles.
„Joanie, babe," Peter shook her a little to get her attention.
„Sorry, just spaced out a little," Jo forced a smile to her face, her hand finding Peter's. „Go straight, it isn't far."
10 years ago Joana Jameson swore to herself she would never come back, no matter what. She left everything behind, the gangs, her junkie mom, her best friend and love, her family. It was the best option after she was hurt as never in her life before by the man she loved more than anyone. She became a lawyer, did a year in an ambulance car, started a whole new life.
Last week she got a letter that her mom died and left the house for her, she didn't know what to do. Peter, her fiance got no idea what kind of life she lived. At the beginning of their relationship Peter tried to ask about her background, simple questions like where she was from, about her family, childhood but Jo refused to talk about any of it. Peter respected it and stopped asking about her past.
When she told Peter about what happened, he convinced her to go to Charming, saying she had to face her past otherwise she would never be able to move on. Jo agreed to go even if she got a sick feeling in her stomach with every mile what took them closer to the small Californian town.
„That's it," Jo sighed, pointing at a rundown house.
She moved her gaze over the house when she got out of the car, the light wind blowing her long brown hair into her face. It was just like she remembered, maybe a little more ragged than the last time she saw it but the feeling of it was all the same.
„So this is where you grew up," Peter gazed the house, getting out of the car.
Surely, it could have been a strange sight for him. Peter came from a rich family, he never had to spare anything. Unlike Jo, he got everything, money, family, the perfect life since the day he was born.
„Yeah, more or less," she optioned not to mention she lived with her godparents after her dad died when she was only 14, or that she moved to the Clubhouse at 16.
Jo shut the car's door and headed toward the house, lifting up a ceramic turtle at the door, knowing she would find the key there. She opened the door, afraid of what would wait for her, ashamed of Peter might see what a mess her mom was. She smiled a little when she saw the place was cleaned, probably cleaner than ever before. Everything was on its place, nothing smelled. Gemma, she thought to herself, mentally thanking for her godmother for taking care of everything before she arrived.
„Wow, there are a lots of pics here," Peter watched the photos on the walls amused.
Jo looked around suprised to see, he was right, there were pictures on the walls everywhere. Photos of her, the Club, her dad and just about everything what belonged to her past.
„You looked different… Your hair was black," Peter noted, his eyes moving from photo to photo. „Why did you dye it?"
„Needed a change," Jo shrugged casually, not wanting to get deeper in the reasons of her total transformation.
Peter stopped in front of a framed photo, what hang in the center, getting the main place. A bunch of men, Jo between a young man, his arms around her shoulder and an older man, her long black hair blown up by the wind, her eyes laughing as she looked up at the blond guy with such an admiration in her eyes even a blind man couldn't miss it.
„Who is he?" Peter asked, causing Jo to turn to him.
She felt a tug in her heart, seeing the photo, which got Peter's attention. She remembered that photo clearly. It was made at the last summer when both hers and Jax's dad was still alive. She was 13 then, the guy next to him, Jackson „Jax" Teller her used to be best friend, love, everything.
Jax was 4 years older than Jo. Everybody knew they belonged together. They were the „JJs", inseparable. He was her knight, maybe a strange one with a rusty armour but after all Charming wasn't the place where anything would be ordinary. Though Jax always thought about Jo as his sister, his best friend, nothing more. In the end that caused Jo running as far as she could from Charming.
„What do you think you are doing here?" a firm female voice called from behind them and Jo's mouth curled up into a smile.
„Aunt Gemma, I was hoping for a nicer welcome to your long lost goddaughter," Jo turned to the older woman, seeing her suspicious face.
„Jo?" she asked, moving her gaze over the young woman in front of her.
„No, I'm just her ghost," Jo rolled her eyes, grinning. „Don't you wanna hug me?"
„Oh, honey," Gemma pulled into a big hug her goddaughter.
Gemma Teller Morrow was more Jo's mother than her blood mother ever was. She and her second husband, Clay were the ones who took care of her after her father's death. They and the Club were Jo's real family.
„What did you think disappearing for 10 years?" Gemma gave her a look what would scare everybody except Jo who knew there was only concern behind her eyes.
Peter cleared his throat, moving next to his fiance, reminding the two women he was in the room, too.
„Oh, sorry," Jo blushed, looking uncomfortable. „Ahm, Peter, this is my godmother, Gemma," she motioned between them. „Gemma, this is Peter… my…"
„Her fiance," Peter cut her off, offering his hand to the older woman.
Gemma looked over at the young man in front of her, smirking.
„You'd better run before she eats you up alive," Gemma told before turning back to Jo. „I'll call the ladies and make a party for you," she stated.
„Be there at 8," she said before Jo could protest.
Jo didn't want to make a big deal about her homecoming. Actually, the truth was she wanted to keep it as low as possible. She wondered what she even thought, thinking she could be invisible.
„Oh, and Jo," Gemma turned back from the door. „Change your clothes. You look like a fucking muffin," with that Gemma left.
Jo laughed, looking over at herself. Surely, in her flowery dress and blue high heels she didn't look like a daughter of a SAMCRO member.
„She hates me," Peter snorted. „She doesn't even know me and she hates me."
„Yes. Don't take it too personally though. She hates everybody who isn't family," Jo smirked. „Great, now I have to bake what means I gotta go to the grocery."
„You can bake?" Peter raised an eyebrow.
„Yeah, never thought it would be important. I mean, you have a cook and everything," Jo shrugged moving past by Peter.
„Do you want me to go with you?" Peter asked.
„No, I'll be back in no time," Jo waved at him.
Jax wandered around the grocery. Gemma called him to get beer, chips and stuff like those because she was about to make a party. His mother was very secretive about the reason and it annoyed him. He hated surprises.
He was on his way to his bike when he saw a young woman walking toward him. She wore a nice flowery summer dress, blue high heels, sunglasses what covered most of her face, her long light brown hair bouncing in a ponytale.
She reminded him of somebody, her face, the way she held herself, the way she moved… Still he couldn't put his finger on who she could be. Jax was about to ask her if he knew her when he heard Tara calling him.
The mysterious young woman made a face and muttered something under her breath. It sounded like she said some things never change but Jax couldn't be sure if he was right.
„Wait," he called after the woman but she entered the grocery without even glancing back.
Jo didn't even want this. She didn't want to go home. It was all Peter's fault. She was already irritated after she saw Tara was back in town as well, drooling over Jax again.
„Are you sure you want to come?" she asked for the hundredth time Peter, hoping he would change his mind.
„Joanie, I'd like to get to know more about you. You never talk about your past, about Charming or anything at all," Peter sighed, trying to understand why his fiance wanted to keep him away from this part of her life.
There's a good reason, Jo groaned mentally but finally nodded.
„Alright, before we go you gotta know a few stuff," Peter nodded, waiting for Jo to continoue.
„My mom was a junkie and my dad died when I was 14," Jo said, watching Peter's reaction.
„Jesus, Joanie, why didn't you tell me any of this?" he pulled her close, feeling he should comfort her.
„No, no, don't get me wrong," Jo pulled away, shaking her head. „I've got nothing to complain about. See, my dad was a member of SAMCRO."
„SAMCRO?" Peter asked, getting no clue what that could mean.
„SAMCRO is the local motorcycle club and they are my family. Clay, my godfather is the president of the club, his wife, Gemma, she was like my mom and all the guys… We are a huge family," Jo tried her best to explain her weird background, knowing it would be hard to understand for somebody who got no idea about this kind of life.
„So this SAMCRO… They are like the Harley Davidson guys you can see on the roads," Peter said slowly.
„Yeah, something like that," Jo thought it would be better to leave it that way, not wanting to share other parts of the Club with her fiance.
It wasn't like she didn't trust him but her loyalty would be always with the Sons and she knew Peter would never understand what this kind of life meant.
„About the party," Jo put on her most serious face, wanting Peter to know everything she was about to say she meant. „ The guys can be a little overwhelming. Whatever happens, just don't start to argue with them or say anything what could offend them. Don't touch their bikes and…"
„And don't look into their eyes?" Peter laughed, cutting her off.
„I'm not kidding, Peter," Jo groaned. She was nervous about Peter going to the party. He didn't know the rules of her world.
„Sorry, it's just like you're talking about wild animals, like we are going to the zoo," Peter give her a kiss, smiling, trying to calm her down.
„Just try not to forget don't say anything stupid," Jo repeated.
„Sounds like I'd better just stay silent all night," Peter watched her, moving toward her old room.
Something like that, she thought to herself but instead of saying it she sent a weak smile to Peter before she disappeared in her room.
Nothing had changed in her room. Everything was the same as she left it. She moved to her gardrobe. She didn't bring any clothes she could wear, so she got no choice but to wear something old.
Jo decided to wear her shabby ripped jeans, a black tank top and her old boots. She stopped in front of the mirror, her eyes stopping at a photo. It was made when she was born. Jax who was 4 years old then kept her proudly in his arms, grinning like he won the lottery. There was another one, Oppie, her other best friend laughed hard at something while she sat in Jax's lap, playing poker with the guys.
She thought about how different was Peter and Jax. While Jax got a blond hair, Peter got black. Jax's eyes was blue, Peter's dark brown almost black. Jax was tall, about 6", while Peter was way shorter than that, almost the same height as her.
But those were just the obvious parts what anybody could see. They were the opposite inside, too. Jax was restless, wild, always dealing with some messed up emotional stuff, being with him was like sitting on a roller coaster. On the other hand Peter never lost it, he was always put together, calm, his life, his emotions always in perfect balance.
Jo shook her head and pulled her hair into a pony tail. It would be stupid compare fire to water. She reached for the black eyeliner. It was a long time ago she used such a thing. Of course, she used make up but not as intense as used to.
When she was done she stared at herself in the mirror. The girl she saw there wasn't the same who lived in New York. It was weird, like Joanie went on a vacation and Jo took her place for a night. She wondered how they would welcome her. Did they remember who she was? Was she still part of the family?
She sighed, grabbing her leather jacket from the chair and moved to the living room where Peter waited for her. When Jo stopped in front of him, his eyes almost popped out of his head.
„Wow," was all Peter could say, seeing her.
„I know it isn't what you get used to," Jo sighed.
„It's definitely different," Peter nodded, still trying to get used the sight.
„Okay, let's get over with this," Jo said, heading out of the house.
Jo entered the house without knocking, Peter hot on her heals. He heard the voices from the back and saw Jo smiling. He watched as she walked through the house with a surprising confidence. Not that Jo wasn't confident but she seemed to be different, more strong, maybe even tough. Probably because of the clothes, Peter thought and shrugged of the weird feeling.
„Who makes the best pie in the world ever?" Jo shouted, grinning as all the eyes turned toward her.
„Raven?... Jo?" Everybody asked in union, watching her with wide eyes.
Peter wondered what they meant by Raven. They didn't recognize Jo or that was a nickname for her.
„Snow White's stepma, you sillies," Jo laughed, seeing their shocked face.
„Oh, baby girl, so you're the reason we're all here," a big man pulled her into a huge bear hug, lifting her up.
„I missed you, too Papa Bear but I need to breath," Jo giggled and the man put her down.
„Wasn't your hair black, Raven?" a guy with slightly curly hair and dead cold blue eyes asked, watching her close.
„Yeah, I guess there was a reason I went with the name Raven," Jo laughed.
„Still a smartass," the man rolled his eyes, hugging her.
She didn't need a second to forget about Peter presence. It was a long procedure while everybody greated her. He stayed at the door, watching his fiance. It was like watching a stranger. Everybody gathered around her and she hugged, kissed, talked and laughed, probably more than Peter ever saw. She moved so natural between these men and women like she never even left.
„Hey, Jax, look who is here," somebody shouted from the crowed when a blond guy passed by Peter.
Peter saw Jo froze for a second as she turned toward the guy. It was the same guy from the photos he saw in the house, the one Jo didn't talk about.
„So it was really you," the guy, Jax stopped a few feet away from Jo, looking hard at her. Her only answer was a shrug.
„You just walked away," Jax said, anger in his voice. Peter got a feeling something happened between his fiance and this guy, something in the past and whatever it was, he got a bad feeling about it.
„And you didn't follow," Jo glared at him what surprised Peter because for the 4 years he knew Jo, she never did anything like that or had a bad word for anybody.
There was tensed silence before Gemma announced the dinner was ready. They all sat around a huge garden table. Peter was overwhelmed by the loud companion, for a moment he even felt lost before Jo sat down next to him.
„Hey, are you alright?" Jo looked at him concerned.
„Sure," Peter smiled at her, not wanting to share he thought the men around the table looked like a bunch of criminals.
„I'm sorry I left you alone before but I didn't see these guys for years," she explained.
„Joanie, it's okay," Peter gave a kiss to her, feeling somebody watched them.
When he turned to see who it was, he saw on the opposite side of the table sat Jax, watching him intensely, looking like he wanted to kill him. Maybe the guy was in love with Jo but she left, he thought as he looked away.
„I'm here," a guy yelled, almost falling to the table like he ran for his life.
„You're lucky this is a special night, otherwise you could sit with the kids again," Gemma glared at him.
„I'm sorry, Gemma. I tried to hurry, but you know there was this stuff I had to take care of," the guy tried to explain but stopped when he saw it led nowhere.
„Oh, and who is this fine young lady here?" he asked, making room for himself next to Jo.
„Jo," she laughed as he kissed her hand.
„Let me introduce myself Miss Jo. I'm Jean Carlos Ortiz, but for my friends it's just Juice."
„It's nice to meet you, Juice. Good to see some fresh blood in this old creepy machine," Jo laughed and the men around the table snorted.
„So is she an old lady?" Juice asked, making Peter wonder what he meant by that. Surely, his fiance wasn't old at all.
„No, but you'd better keep your hands to yourself because soon she'll be," a guy with a terrible Scottish accent answered.
„It isn't that soon. I mean, she's only 28," Peter laughed sheepishly but he was the only one who thought this was funny.
„Being an old lady means she belongs to one of us," Jax said, his eyes not moving from Jo even for a second.
„Oh, I see. Well, that wouldn't happen unless I join the club," Peter laughed again, pulling Jo closer to his body.
Everybody stared at them like Peter said there was a bomb under the table and if anybody moved he would explode it.
„Where is Oppie? I haven't seen him," Jo asked, moving out from under his arm.
Peter could tell she wanted to save the awkward situation but it didn't work because the silence got more heavy if that was even possible.
„Donna died," Clay, the big man broke the silence after a few moments.
„What happened?" Jo asked, surprising Peter with her hard voice. He could tell Jo knew the woman, maybe they were even friends so it surprised him she could stay that strong.
Everybody moved their gaze to Peter who moved uncomfortably next to Jo. It could be a silent sign between them because Jo only nodded and didn't ask further. Jax stood up and left without a word, Jo going after him, leaving Peter alone at the table.
„Hey, pretty boy," Jo said, sitting next to Jax on the front steps.
„Wanna share?" she asked and Jax gave her his cigarette. „You know I didn't mean this but thanks," Jo said, taking a gulp.
„It was us," Jax said after a few minutes of silence.
„Shit," Jo looked at him with wide eyes, swallowing hard, already knowing what he was talking about. „What happened?"
„There's this crazy ATF bitch. She set us up, planting Oppie was a rat…"
„What? How could you believe that, Jax?" Jo raised her voice, standing up.
„I didn't, okay?" he looked at her annoyed. „They paid his debts, his car and mobile was wired so Clay thought that he gave us out. I didn't know about it, Raven."
„Jesus," Jo said in a small voice, trying to hold back her tears. „Does he… Oppie… he…"
„No, he thinks it was the Niners," Jax shook his head.
Jo watched him for a few moments and she only realized then how tired Jax looked. She sat back next to him and hugged him.
„I swear if I only knew," he murmured into her hair.
„I know, I know…" Jo said, stroking his back softly, trying to take his pain away even if she knew it was impossible.
„Raven, you should come back if you don't want Gemma scare away your man," Half Sack, the new prospect showed up in the door.
„Oh, shit," Jo cursed under her breath.
„So you tell me you can't use any weapon, you can't fight, not even a rabbit as much as I can tell. Would you mind share with me how you would like to protect my goddaughter?" Gemma looked hard at Peter, reminding Jo of a cop who knew the suspect was running off the answeres.
„Leave him alone, Aunt," she rolled her eyes, sitting back next to her fiance. „You know just like I do that I can take care of myself. I learnt martial arts from one of the best and I can shoot since I was 12."
„You can shoot? And since you were 12?" Peter looked at Jo with wide eyes but Jo only shrugged.
„Do you remember? That was some crazy shit," Jax smiled across the table.
„Dad was so pissed he wanted to shot your ass," Jo laughed along everybody, remembering his father chasing the 16 years old boy across the street after he found out what they did.
„Wasn't so funny. That could have got me killed," Jax smirked.
„You would have deserved it. Giving a gun to a kid," Clay shook his head.
„Then again who would have taught all the other stuff to her? Like kissing?" Jax winked at Jo who laughed even harder.
„Shut up, Teller," she said, throwing a frie at him.
Gemma stood in the corner, moving her eyes between her son and goddaughter. That stupid boy let her leave, not realizing she was the one all along. Gemma knew she had to do something because there was no way she would let Jax make the same mistake again.
„What do you have in mind?" Clay stopped next to her, knowing she was up to something.
„They are still perfect," she answered.
„For what?" Clay raised an eyebrow, pretending not to know what his wife meant.
„You know for what, for each other," Gemma snapped, making Clay laugh.
„Don't try anything. They will realize sooner or later," he said.
„Not with that bitch, Tara back. She blinded Jax again with her pretty face. Somebody has to show him who he is belong to," Gemma groaned.
„But that somebody shouldn't be you."
Jo was talking to Half Sack, laughing hysterically as she listened to the story behind the name when a slow song started to play. It was Safe In My Heart by the Foreigners, Jo's gaze searching for Jax immediately. Their song.
When Jo's dad died she couldn't stop crying. She was with Jax at the club house. Jax turned on the radio and that song was played. He took the young girl into his lap, swinging with her back force, softly stroking her back, trying just to be there for her, knowing words couldn't have eased her pain.
Jax stepped to her, offering his hand what Jo took and Jax pulled her close to his body. They didn't dance, just swayed slowly with the music. Jo rested her head on his chest, listening to his heartbeat, a familiar feeling growing in her, the feeling of home.
Peter stood lonely in a corner, watching his fiance dancing with Jax. They were too close for his taste but that wasn't the worst part. He watched them all night, realizing there was some kind of invisible bound between the two, something what tied them to each other, something what he never had, that thing he knew was missing from their realationship, at least from Jo's part: blind, unconditional love.
„It was the biggest mistake of your life, convincing her to come back. She will never leave again, you know that, right?"
Peter flinched by Gemma's words but got a feeling the woman was right. He should have never let Jo come back. It was a good thing they would leave next day, he thought.
Jo pulled her shirt over her head, her eyes stopping at the tattoo on her left side. It was a crow, under it a text „JJ forever". She was 16 when one of the guys made it for her. Clay and Jax were furious but she just laughed at them.
„What does it mean, Joanie?" Peter asked from the bed, making Jo jump a little.
„I thought you were sleeping," she said, grabbing her night shirt.
„You didn't answer," Peter said.
„I already told you. Joana Jameson," Jo lied without blinking. „JJ forever" meant Jax and Jo forever but obviously, that wasn't a thing she wanted to share with her fiance.
„This isn't just a motorcycle club, is it?"
„What's with all these questions?" Jo asked back sharply, getting in the bed, pulling the cover over her.
„I'm just curious," Peter answered defensively.
„Sorry, it's 3 in the morning and I'm tired. Let's not talk about the club. We leave tomorrow anyway," Jo said, giving a kiss to Peter, cutting the conversation shortly.