A/N: This is the sequel to Hot Soup. I think this rounds up all the lose ends of the first part. I hope you enjoy it and please leave feedback. I like to know what you guys think about my writing. Is it good or bad? You like, you don't? What needs work? Say anything but say it, pretty please... Enjoy the story!
Lukewarm Coffee (Seq. to Hot Soup)
It was a hot and humid summer day, the perfect day to lounge around on the beach and daydream about a hot motorcycle-riding hunk. But instead she was stuck at the family dinner, serving food and cold drinks to all the teens that were enjoying their summer vacations.
Who on Earth had convinced her to cover a shift on such a hot day? And on the day that the A/C decided to act out and take a break nonetheless? Oh yes, she remembered who. Bobbie Spencer, her new landlord, boss and old friend. For some strange reason the busty redhead was on her way out of town for the weekend and needed someone to fill in for her.
"Who better than you?"
"Yes you. You know the place. You worked at Kelly's for almost 4 years. I trust you."
The fact that Elizabeth used to be a wreck of a waitress must've slipped her mind. Not to mention that she was a nurse now, and a very good one at that. She tried to argue about her shifts at the hospital, but there was no use.
"What about the hospital, Bobby?"
"Don't worry about it, honey. Remember I'm your boss. I'll give you the days off. Liz, I really need you."
And then it happened. The older woman dropped her bottom lip and gave the petite brunette 'the look'. She remembered that look. The one that made it impossible for her to refuse anything the other woman ever asked of her. She loved Bobbie Spencer like her own mother. After the death of her grandmother she thought she was going to be alone, but she wasn't. She found a surrogate family on the Spencers. So she agreed. And that was why she was stuck there instead of lounging around the lake, how she had planned with Emily.
With a loud sigh, Elizabeth refilled the ice tea of the girls huddled at the counter and made her way to the dinning room to check on the other patrons.
"Order's up, Lizzie!" Emily's voice resounded above the loud pop music blaring through the room.
"Don't call me that." Elizabeth walked to the side of the counter, in front of the swinging doors that lead to the kitchen where the tall brunette had emerged from.
"I can't help it. This is like a trip back in time. I feel like I'm fifteen years old again." Emily said with a smile.
"Yeah, well I'm glad someone is enjoying this." Elizabeth was scowling as she grabbed the big platter of cheese fries and took it to one of the tables, where a group of five high school kids where checking out her legs.
Due to the smoldering heat and lack of A/C, Elizabeth was wearing a jean short and a t-shirt cut out bearing her midriff. Her hair was tied back on a ponytail, with the exceptions of the wayward locks at the front that she had to keep placing behind her ear.
One of the boys dropped a fork and when he picked it up his hand made its way near Elizabeth's leg, but she caught him before he could touch her.
"Touch me and you won't leave to see high school again."
Emily watched the exchange while serving a glass of water for a costumer at the counter until a bell rang behind her and she jumped, dropping the water over the counter.
She turned to find green eyes and a big smile staring at her. "Lucky! Don't do that!"
"Sorry." He said with a smile that told her he really wasn't. "Table four is ready. Two burgers and fries are up."
Emily took a towel and dried the mess at the counter before turning and grabbing the tray. "I'm on my way."
Elizabeth made it behind the counter with a big frown on her face. "I swear, if one more of those little punks try to put his hands on me again, I'm going to break it off."
"A little testy are we?" Lucky asked from his place behind the kitchen window.
"I forgot how horny teenage males can be."
"I resent that."
"You're not a teenager."
"But I used to be. And if I remember correctly, you were the one who wanted to jump my bones back then."
"Temporary lapse of insanity."
"Oh come on, Lizzie. You know you wanted me. Who was the horny teenager then?"
"This coming from the guy that came to be known as 'Lurky' on the girl's locker rooms at PCH."
"That was just one time."
"Go back to work 'Lurky'. I still need two more platters of cheese fries, one for table 8 and one for table 3."
"Yes, ma'am." She gave her a mock salute and disappeared from view.
Elizabeth smiled to herself. Her best friends had volunteered to give her a hand when a waitress called in sick and the cook never showed up. Even if she was playing the serious one, she was still having a good time. She too was remembering her teenage years, when the three of them used to work at the dinner so they could have money to burn on the weekends. She busied her self filling the ketchup bottles and once in a while looked outside to where Emily was. The taller brunette was taking orders outside on the courtyard. Her long hair was twisted up with red chopsticks; she was wearing red flip flops, a pair of red capri pants and a white tank top. The green apron was a complement to her look. She looked so young without a trace of make up, no one would recognize her as the promising Dr. Emily Quartermaine.
She dropped her gaze and returned to her task. If half the girls there knew that the hunky Detective Spencer was preparing their food, they would probably choke on a fry. Elizabeth smiled again. They had come a long way since they were 15 years old. Who would've thought they end up here again? Or in her case, who would've thought she'd survive the last six months?
Two more hours 'til he was home again, and he was happy about it. Who would have thought, Jason Morgan would be counting the days until he could go back to Port Charles? Certainly not him. But he had a good reason; a petite, blue-eyed brunette was waiting for him.
Jason let out a long sigh and looked outside the window of the airplane. Was she still waiting for him after so long? They didn't even know each other that well. Why was it that he couldn't stop thinking about her? Her short chocolate color hair, those azure blue eyes, her full red lips, her porcelain skin; he was hypnotized by her beauty. But he also knew it was way more than physical attraction. He'd never known someone as caring and trustworthy as her. He wasn't used to thinking about the future or planning ahead, but after their meeting almost six moths ago, he couldn't stop thinking about going back home, looking for her, taking her for a ride on his bike and see what exactly was going on inside him. Because one thing was for sure he's never felt like that before. The goose bumps every time he heard her voice, the electricity shock that ran through him when they touched and the painful stab he still felt after their goodbye. He smiled then, not good bye but see you latter.
1His lips grazed hers slightly. The kiss was slow and sweet, and way to short for both of them. Before he could really taste all she had to offer he heard the man calling to him. They didn't break the contact immediately. His hand trailed her face and tucked her hair behind her ear. She looked at him a tear rolling down her cheek. He dried it with his thumb and kissed her forehead.
"I'll come back. I promise."
He let her go and turned away. Her hand found his wrist, she stopped him and he turned around. "Be careful."
He nodded. "Good bye."
"No. I'll see you later."
He had fallen in love with her, and she didn't deserve it. Everything he and Sonny talked about came crashing in like cold water, waking him up from his reverie. He wasn't a man that could make promises of happily ever after. What made him think that he could come back to her after everything she went through because of him? No. He was not that selfish, the only thing he could really do was forget her and just walk away.
Elizabeth was wiping down the counter and her mind drifted to the events that took place after Jason left town. She decided to file the transfer papers and two weeks later was working at General Hospital. She thought the memory of her grandmother would haunt her, but it didn't. If anything, being the granddaughter of Audrey Hardy and following her footsteps made her more proud than before. For a while, things were going great. Even though she didn't know how Jason was doing, she took comfort in his promise. He was a strong man and somehow she knew he was okay.
But two months later, things changed. There was a break in at her studio, nothing was taken it was just trashed and a bowl of chicken noodle soup half eaten was left on her table. Elizabeth freaked out and called the cops, but here was no DNA proof on the leftovers. She knew that it was a sign, but she let it go. Then she found an envelope under her door a couple of days later, one single picture inside. A picture of her and Jason hugging outside of Jake's the day he left. Elizabeth was starting to get nervous, but she knew that the police was not an option. She was sure Sonny Corinthos had something to do with the subtle threats. He was the only one who knew about her helping Jason out and he was after Jason.
One night after her shift, she walked out of the hospital and found a big black limousine outside. Two men came out of the car and one walked out of the shadows. She tried to escape but there was no use. They took her and brought her to a warehouse on the docks. No one said anything to her even though she was screaming and fighting to get out. She was so nervous, she was sure she was going to die until a man came into the warehouse. She wasn't tied down, but she wasn't about to make a break for it when four goons were standing at each corner of the room. Sonny Corinthos smiled his thousand dollar smile and dimples at her and asked her to stay calm. After much convincing words, she calmed down and listened to what he had to say. It was then when she learned that they knew the truth. Sonny Corinthos had been played by his sister Courtney Corinthos and a man named Roscoe. They had being embezzling money and playing around the so called 'Organization'. What exactly that was she didn't know and she didn't want to, so she just listened to what the man had to say.
"I'm so sorry we frighten you Ms. Webber. It was never our intention. But we've gotten word that you've been receiving threads and we know how much you did for Jason, we want to help you."
"Why should I believe you? I mean, I went to you for help and you threw Jason's dishonesty at me. You didn't want to see him. You said he was dead to you and that he was your enemy."
"I was blindsided by pain. I should've never doubted Jason. He's always been loyal."
"But you did."
"Yeah I did and I'm trying to make this right."
"By threatening me? Or are you going to eliminate me?"
"No Ms. Webber. I'm going to protect you, because Roscoe is coming after you."
"W-why would he care about m-me?"
"You helped Jason and you contacted me. Jason was meant to die, but by some miracle he didn't. Thanks to you I found him and when I figured out the truth, Courtney was taken out of the country."
"What does she have to do with this?"
"She was the brains behind the operation to take me down; she was my sister and Jason's fiancé."
Sonny proceeded to tell her how Courtney was blind by jealousy and greed. How she managed to infiltrate into the business by sleeping with Jason and making him believe she was in love with him. Sonny explained that she used Roscoe to do her dirty work by feigning innocence and acting like a dumb blond and how it all worked. Jason had being attacked outside the coffee warehouse after eavesdropping on a conversation between Courtney and Roscoe. Jason had found out the truth so he had to be taken out of the game.
Courtney and Roscoe used the code of Honor, Loyalty and Respect that the 'Organization' lived by to make Sonny believe that Jason was dishonest. But then they got proof of Courtney's betrayal. Sonny told her that as soon as he realized that Elizabeth and ultimately Jason were telling the truth he went to look for him at the hospital but it was too late, Jason was gone.
After months of looking for him, they were about to call of the search when they intercepted a postcard addressed to Ms. Webber. At the news Elizabeth's mouth dropped. He had tried to communicate with her.
Sonny went on and explained that they found Jason in Nashville and that he was healthy. Seeing that Elizabeth didn't believe him, Sonny took a small package and gave it to her. Inside there were 50 postcards, one from each state of the country. That was the only confirmation she needed, Jason was alive.
Elizabeth sighed and remembered every one of the postcards from towns around the country. She wished she could have been there with him. She would've being happy to leave everything and gone with him and the thought frighten her. She had fallen in love with a complete stranger in the time frame of a week. That sounded so crazy, but in the end it was real.
Home, Jason Morgan was finally home. After eight hours on a plane and six months without a single bike ride he was ready. Besides he needed to stop thinking and what better than a motorcycle ride on the cliff road to take his mind away for a few hours. Francis was outside of the airport waiting for him; his Harley was parked ride beside him. After patting the older man on the back and handing him his black duffle bag, Jason straddled the bike and revved it up.
The warm air of a humid summer night did nothing to alleviate the aching need to find Elizabeth Webber and take her in his arms. He needed to kiss her, kiss her soft red lips and tell her how much he thought about her. Her soft and feminine smell, a mix of snow and jasmine flooded his senses every time he thought about her. He was so close to her and yet so far. He couldn't do that to her, not after she lost everything, and was lucky not to lose her life because of him. No, he couldn't look for her. She could never know he was back.
When Sonny found him, he was sure he was going to die. But then when they sat down and talked about everything that had come to light, he realized how wrong he was. Sonny's Organization was still a part of him, they were still his family. Hours of taking and planning how to dismantle Roscoe's network and a plan was finished. Jason didn't ask about Elizabeth, still not sure if Sonny even remembered her.
It was a month later when a phone call from Port Charles, woke him up in the middle of the night. Sonny's voice reverberated in his head.
"There was a fire tonight."
All Jason could ask was a cold "Who?"
"It was set on Elizabeth Webber's studio."
Sonny kept talking when all that answered him back was thick breathing at the other end. "She's okay. She was out with Emily. Nothing happened to her, she's safe."
His trembling hand on his lips as he blink the tears back. "How did it happen? Who's responsible?"
"It was Roscoe."
"Where is he?"
"We have witnesses that position him on Miami as we speak."
"I'll take care of him..."
Dropping the phone and picking up his clothes Jason Morgan made his way to the bathroom. It was time that Roscoe paid for his mistakes and Jason Morgan was going to make sure of it.
He brought his bike to a stop in front of the battered building. He looked up at her studio. The small place on the third floor was being remodeled and refurbish, but it still reminded him of what it meant for her to be involved in his life. Destruction. He could never ask her to walk into a life of danger.
Sitting on his bike he remembered the last time he saw Roscoe alive. The smug Italian Boss was standing on the deck of his yacht, never suspecting that Jason was looking back at him. A crew member delivered the letter and when the drug dealer read the bold red warning he looked up to see Jason standing on the shore. He called out to one of his men but it was too late, Jason pressed the button on a remote detonator and counted down from five.
The blond girl that emerged from the lower deck took him by surprise, but it was too late.
The boat exploded in flames like a hell ball and Roscoe and Courtney Corinthos were a problem no more.
He had being hiding for six months, all because a capricious little girl wanted vengeance on a family that never asked for her to be part of it. As easy as that the flames died, the ship went down and all that was left was the smoke. It wasn't fair, not for him, not for Sonny and not for Elizabeth.
Jason breathed deeply in and out. Elizabeth's only mistake was helping someone that needed her. She only brought him a bowl of hot soup, and she ended up loosing everything. And all for what? A mob enforcer? A scared bastard who wouldn't show his face? No. He thought, better. For a man who was willing to fight for her. He wasn't going to hide anymore. He deserved better and if Elizabeth Webber still wanted him, he wasn't going to turn her down.
He picked his cell and dialed the familiar number. "Where is she?"
It was almost 10 o'clock. She looked around and was reminded of the last two costumers of the night, an elderly couple sitting on a table at the back. They were sharing a piece of apple pie, but while the woman was drinking a cold ice tea the man had ordered a cup of black coffee. Black coffee? Who drank that on such a hot night?
They looked so adorable together. She even decided to give them the food on the house. Once they were finished they waved at her and thanked her for her amiable service. She said it was her pleasure and watched as they walked out hand in hand. She turned around and found the place empty. The night slowed down and she was able to send Emily and Lucky home. They had being working all day and they both had to work early the next day. So, Elizabeth decided to close alone.
She cleaned the table never noticing the man dressed in black that was watching her.
Jason walked out of the shadows and looked inside the dining room through the glass window. Elizabeth was in the kitchen and when she walked out, behind the counter she wasn't wearing her apron. She looked beautiful and so young and innocent a shock of desire went through him.
He watched as she moved around cleaning and then he saw her disappear behind the counter. He took a tentative step inside, his thick sole boots resounding on the wooden floor as he took heavy steps towards her. She was standing with her back to the door.
Jason smiled and cleaned his throat. "That's too bad I had my heart set on a bowl of hot soup."
Elizabeth's brow furrowed. Hot Soup, on a day as hot as today? This man is definitely crazy.
"We don't make soup on such hot days. It's summer!"
"Okay, I'll take a cup of coffee instead."
"You're set on taking something hot aren't you?" She turned around then.
Her breathing hitched and her smile grew wider. "Jason, you're back!"
Before he could answer she was at the other side of the counter and running straight to his arms. She jumped and wrapped her arms around his neck. His arms instantly grabbed her by the middle and they spun a bit from the momentum. "God I missed you! I missed you so much."
"I missed you too, honey. I missed you too."
Then she was out of his arms and a couple of feet away from him. The move took him by surprised. Here it was, he thought. She's going to walk away and tell him she didn't want him.
"Your shoulder and legs." She moved closer to him and started running her hands all over him. A worried look as she checked him for injuries. He smiled at the fill of her hands all over him. She didn't know what she was doing to him, with her innocent touch. "How are you? I didn't hurt you did I? I totally forgot about your injuries. And the stitches on your side...God I'm so stupid!" Her hands were on his side soothing the place were he used to harbor a gunshot wound. Now he had a thin scar instead. She was so close, her head bent and her bottom lip between her teeth. He placed his hands on her face and forced her to look at him. When their eyes met, he spoke.
"I'm okay. Everything is healed. My shoulder bothers me once in a while, but considering I left the hospital and therapy early, I'm good."
"Are you sure?"
"Yes. I'm a lot better now that I'm finally home."
"I'm glad you're home too."
He dropped his head slightly angling it. Elizabeth stood straight moving her head up, closing the distance. His hand caressed her jaw. But before he could move closer, she was out of his arms.
"Uh... you said you wanted coffee."
"Yeah, black is good."
"Okay." She moved to her spot behind the counter. She took the coffee pot and a cup.
Jason moved to the stool and sat down. She placed the cup in front of him, before she filled a glass with ice tea for herself. She rounded the counter and took a sit next to him.
"So, how have you been?"
"Good. I managed to stay low key for a couple of months. I couldn't really go out of the country because I could've been easier to track, so I just kept moving from place to place until He found me."
"We messed up, big time."
"Yeah, well there wasn't much more we could think. He told you I was his enemy and then he went to the hospital with the guards to look for me."
"How did he found you?"
"It was interesting, to say the least. But I don't want to talk about that."
"I imagined as much. But at least you both talked and got things straighten out."
"I was hurt and mad at him for not believing me. But he had poof and good reasons to doubt."
"I bet he did. His sister's a real gem isn't she?"
"You know about her and me." His gaze dropped to his still full cup of coffee.
"Yes, I do." Her hand covered his.
"I was never in love with her." He looked her straight in the eyes then. And she knew he was telling the truth.
"Thank God, because if you had, she would've broken your trust and your heart. She used you as a means of an end and that is very wrong."
"I used her too. I was lonely and she was around so we hooked up. I never cared about her as more than a bedmate and that is also wrong."
"Yeah, well just because you did a very chauvinistic-pig-male thing doesn't mean you deserved to be made a target. Courtney hand painted a bull's eye on your back."
Silence overcame the small dinner and both of them looked deep in thought. Jason's face became somber. He had done the same thing to her and she didn't deserve it.
"I'm sorry that you got involved in this and I wasn't here to protect you." Jason broke the silence then.
"But you almost weren't. Strangers broke up into your place, they followed you and they put a bomb on your studio. You almost died, Elizabeth."
"But I didn't!" She said with a triumphant smile.
"This is not a joke. I did the same thing to you as Courtney did to me. I painted a bull's eye on your back. I've made you a target."
Elizabeth stood up and moved closer to him. She turned him around and he ended up facing her. "Don't you dare compare yourself to that self righteous bitch. You're nothing like her."
She stepped in between his legs then and grabbed his face with her small hands.
"Listen to me. You're the most loyal and respectable man I have ever met. You're caring and tender and I'm not going to stand here and listen to you rant and sulk, because a couple of dimwits decided they wanted to off me by association."
He took her hands away and holds them in the air between them. "Elizabeth this is not a game. My life is really complicated and dangerous."
Her brows were furrowed, forming a v shape as she scowled at him. "What are you trying to say?"
"We can't be friends anymore Elizabeth. I don't want to be responsible for you getting hurt. I can't watch you die, I care about you too much."
"Okay." She took a step back and took her hands away from his. A hurt look on her eyes.
"I'm doing this to protect you."
"Leave." She said in an even tone.
"I said leave. If you can't be around me and you can't be my friend, then leave. I can't believe I waited all this time for you. I used to lay awake at night clutching all those stupid postcards and worried about you and dreamt about the day I'll see you again and what? You come in here and act like you still care and then backhand me telling me you can't be my friend anymore?"
"Elizabeth..." He reached for her but she stepped back.
"Don't touch me. If this is what you were going to do all along why did you kissed me? Why did you promised to come back to me? Why did you send me all those cards? Why go trough the trouble if you didn't cared about me?"
"Elizabeth, I can't put words to the way I feel about you." He stood up then and took a step closer to her. She didn't back away. "You're so beautiful... I thought about you all the time. I think I fell in love with you, but you almost died because of me. I can't put you in that position again."
Elizabeth was speechless. "What did you say?"
"That I won't let you get hurt."
"That I thought about you too."
"After that." Her eyes were shining with unshed tears.
"I- what did I say?"
"You said you fell in love with me."
"I- I did."
"But that's crazy. I mean we spend a total of five days together. And you were in pain medication... this...I..." She walked to the stool and sat down on the one he had been occupying earlier.
"I know this is crazy Elizabeth." His arms came to rest on the counter successfully encasing her. He smiled down at her distressed face. "Somewhere in between the hot soup and this lukewarm coffee, I fell in love with you."
"But you said you couldn't put your feelings for me into words?
"I guess I found them."
She looked up at him. "Then now what?"
"I have no idea."
"I think I fell in love with you too."
Her quiet admission stirred things inside of him he never thought he was capable of feeling and he liked it. He put his fingers under her shin and pulled her head until their gaze locked. Their noses were touching and then he smiled at her. He moved his head to one side and then touched his lips to hers.
The slow and sweet exploration was enough to start fire on the already hot night. Soon his hands found her waist and hers his neck. The chaste kiss became passionate when her tongue asked for entrance to his mouth. He parted his lips and soon they were dueling for control. Jason straightens, bringing Elizabeth with him. Her legs find his waist and curled around him successfully pulling them closer.
When they finally come up for air, Elizabeth rests her forehead in his. "Are you still going to try and walk away?"
"No even if you asked me to."
"Good, 'cause I wasn't about to let you do it either."
"We still have a lot of things to discuss, Elizabeth. I meant what I said, my life is dangerous and you will be a target. My enemies could use you to get to me."
"If that happens, will you be there for me?"
"Yes. I will do everything in my power to protect you."
"Then, bring it on."
She took the initiative this time seeking his lips with hers and nibbling on them teasingly. He playfully bit her bottom lip and they laughed together. Yeah, she thought, everything was definitely right.