Part of A Pack, Part II

A Tale of Bucky.

Bucky Dideron was not as clueless as everyone thought he was, He knew Jenny was beautiful. He also knew that over the months it had grown hard to stay away from her. He was fairly sure he loved her. Of all this he was aware.

If someone told him a year ago-hell even this past summer-that he would feel this way about crying, nervous, shy, heartbroken Jenny Garnier he would have laughed in their face. Sure he had always found her attractive but thinking someone looks good and actually loving them was a whole different ballpark. A year ago Jenny and Abbey were nothing but a pair of crying mourning members of his pack that caused more annoyance than help.

But that had changed.

Abbey got older, smiled more, became more of a lovely entertainment for her lovesick mother than a sad reminder of the husband she married so young. So Jenny smiled more, she started to contribute to the pack and Bucky found excuses to help her out. Shamefully he even used the "making up for killing one of our own" routine opting to help others to cover the rouse of helping Jenny.

He never really thought he'd grow to feel so strongly-not only for her-but for little Abbey as well. He knew exactly when his desire to protect them and be a part of their life had crossed the line from friendship to the longing to be more for them: a mate, a protector for Jenny; a father, a provider for Abbey. He knew when he began to love them.

And he knew on the same level that Jenny felt this change: when she started wondering about luck and chances, when she started smiling more in his presense and stopped crying at the drop of a hat. She was nervous and shy by nature but she gained a certain confidence, was more of the Jenny he knew when they were kids and Gabriel, Paul, Jenny and himself ruled over all their age-mates in the pack. Gabriel with his cool confidence and demeanor that demanded attention; he with his brute strength and laughable swagger when it was Gabriel that got the girls; Paul, far brainier than either of them but still with the same something that made up the other two; and sweet Jenny, a part of them because of Paul.

The two of them had always been inseparable, even as toddlers, and when Paul became one of them, Jenny did too. You couldn't have one without the other.

When they grew older and Gabriel left for a time the group fell apart. Bucky and Paul spent less time together. While Paul and Jenny became closer than ever, marrying at twenty and having Abbey years later, after Gabriel had returned and only months before the fire stole Paul's life.

Bucky remembered that night with sharp clarity: the coward sheriff and his minions hiding behind their guns and silver bullets as the only home Bucky had ever known burned, Ivan directing all able males to help evacuate everyone from the inn and its cabins, females crying in terror and remorse as everything the pack held dear was burned to the ground.

But most of all he remembered running into the inn when Sybil said Paul, Jenny and the baby were still inside. When he heard that he didn't think, he, Ivan, and Gabriel ducked back inside but all he could think about was saving Jenny, though this didn't register as a conscious thought until much later.

Paul had been in the bedroom behind a wall of smoke and flames. Bucky and Gabriel took Jenny and the baby and got out when Ivan, their leader, told them to leave Paul to him. It never crossed Bucky's mind that the two of them wouldn't make it out.

But that was two years ago and they were all so changed. Gabriel's aloof manner had shed with Vivian by his side. He had taken on so much responsibility as a leader and that had changed him too. Jenny was no longer dependant on anyone. She was on her way to becoming a healer. She was more self-reliant and stronger than anyone gave her credit for. And Bucky…well he was confused. He knew how he felt about the young widow he grew up with. He knew she wasn't entirely unreceptive to the idea of them being together, but the only problem was Paul. Would he always be a wall between them? Her grief and his guilt? Could they ever be together?

There was only one way to find out.

Walking to Jenny's room from his cabin gave him a lot of time to chicken out, but Bucky told himself to just man up. If she accepted him that was great. If not…well there were other tails to chase…weren't there? Was there anyone else like Jenny?

"Bucky what are you-?" Jenny started as she opened the door.

But Bucky cut her off taking a step forward, took her face in his hands and kissed her hard square on the lips. It took a moment for her to respond, and for a split second Bucky worried she might push him away and out her door.

But she didn't. After a moment soft lips molded with his, moving in complex but simple motions with his own. She wrapped her arms around his neck, fingering the thick scars there from fights long past, standing of the tips of her toes to press harder against him. Bucky's emotions got the better of him and in a moment he was wrapping his arms around her waist lifting her like that backwards into the room she shared with her daughter.

A spatter of tiny applause brought a bubble of conscience to the fog that had descended over their brains. Abbey. Jenny broke away breathless, it was a moment before she could form words. "Uh... I think you should leave, now." Jenny raked a hand through her tousled brown hair.

Bucky fought back a stab of disappointment. He started back for the door, seeing Abbey's small frown but knowing there was nothing he could do about it. Everything from here on out was her mother's call.

Jenny followed him to the door. Just as he was about to leave she grabbed his hand, "Come back tomorrow?"

"Absolutely," Bucky's smile flashed across his face and after kissing her quickly he walked back down the hall of the inn, whistling.

This didn't exactly turn out the way I imagined but... I like it, This collection of one-shots gives me a chance to brush up on my third-person narrative and to my surprise I like how they are turning out.

I enjoy making my own back-story for all these minor characters that I can't fit into my other stories the way I'd like. Tell me what you think about them, this one in particular :D melissaturkey

p.s. I loved the word usage of "spatter" in this one. Can you find a word you like?