A Change in the Weather
Summary: Part of the Time After Time series. When Tori has a cold and John agrees to take Kaiya for the day, who's there to take care of her? The Miz, of course. John/OC.
Disclaimer: I own nothing associated with the WWE. I only own Tori, and purplelygoodnes owns Kaiya.
Author's Note: Hey! This is another oneshot for the "Forever and a Day" series by Graelam that covers the six year time gap between the prologue and chapter one. So, go read the story that inspired it if you want the whole story! Let's see... Though the pairing is John/Tori, there's a lot of Miz/Tori sibling fluff! So, with that said, enjoy!
As soon as Tori slowly felt herself wake up, she knew that something wasn't right. She could not breathe through her nose at all, her head was pounding, and her throat felt like it was completely raw.
John Hennigan, who had been awake for some time and had been reading in bed, looked down at Tori when he heard her groan from where she was curled up next to him. She had slept a lot longer than she usually did, but he had just figured that she needed the rest and had let her sleep. She wasn't a morning person, but she was never like this. "Are you okay, Tor?" he asked.
"No," Tori answered in a mumble, pulling the blankets up over her head when the sunlight in the room bothered her, feeling too crummy to even try to assure him that she was fine. It annoyed her that she sounded so stuffed up and could barely talk since her throat was so scratchy.
Concerned, John set his book aside and turned his full attention to his girlfriend. This was definitely not normal behavior for her. He slowly lowered the blankets, getting a good look at Tori's face under her disheveled hair. It was pale except for her cheeks, which were rosy in color. He leaned down and pressed his lips lightly against her forehead to feel for her temperature. "I think you've got a bit of a fever there, sweetheart," he told her.
Tori cracked one eye open to look up at him. "Doesn't surprise me with the way I'm feeling," she said, sniffing.
John sighed as he ran his hand up and down her back, realizing how miserable she must have been feeling to admit it. He knew that there were two times a year that Tori got sick without fail, usually with a change in the weather. This must have been one of those times.
She then scooted closer to him so that she was pressed completely against his side, snuggling into him. "I'm just a little cold," she explained quietly, not even bothering to open her eyes.
"Here." John laid back down and wrapped her in his arms, holding her close. She definitely had a bit of a fever judging by her body heat. "I think it would be best if you stayed in bed today, Tor."
At this, Tori opened her eyes and raised her head to look at him. "But we were supposed to take Kaiya to see Santa at the zoo today," she replied. "She was so looking forward to it..."
John smiled and kissed her quickly before gently pushing her head back down on his chest. "What you need to do is get better," he told her. "And the way to do that is to spend the day resting. I'll take Kaiya to the zoo still, and that way, she'll still get to go and you get some peace and quiet."
Tori laughed a little, which brought on a coughing fit. She covered her mouth while John tightened his arms around her until it stopped. "You taking a four-year-old all by yourself?" she asked, her throat hurting when she tried to talk. But she wasn't just any four-year-old. Kaiya was her and John's daughter who was very outgoing and energetic and could easily get overexcited at events like this.
"Yeah," John muttered. "It won't be too bad. She'll be fine. I'm more concerned about you. Just rest up and feel better, okay, babe? Don't worry about a thing."
That was going to be easier said than done. Tori sniffed again as she cuddled against John, grateful for the warmth he provided. She hated feeling so crummy. She would have much preferred to spend the day with her daughter and the love of her life, but she also knew he was right. Getting better was the important thing. Her eyes slowly closed again, the pressure in her head ceasing a little, as she fell into a restless sleep.
When Tori opened her eyes again, she saw that she was alone in the bedroom, and that it was a couple of hours later than the first time she had woke up. Still feeling just as crummy as before, she wasn't quite sure what had woken her. She had heard John leave with Kaiya a little while before, so that wasn't it...
But then, she heard it. Though the other two people that lived in the house were gone, she heard noises coming from the kitchen.
Tori sat up, closing her eyes and pausing when a wave of nausea swarmed over her. Once it passed, she slowly climbed out of bed, shivering when she was no longer surrounded by its warmth, and quickly pulled on her favorite hoodie from the closet. Then, she opened the door and cautiously began to make her way to the kitchen.
"Damn it! Stupid stove..."
When she heard the agitated grumbling, Tori paused, realizing that they sounded familiar. She hurried the rest of the way to the kitchen, her eyes widening in shock at the sight before her.
Standing in the kitchen was none other than Mike "the Miz" Mizanin, John's best friend and the man she looked to as an older brother. He was standing in front of the stove with his back to her, and whatever he was doing must have gone wrong since he was still cursing under his breath.
When he heard his name, Mike quickly turned around, trying to hide whatever was on the stove. "Oh, hi, Tori," he said with a smile. "Sorry, I didn't mean to wake you..."
"What are you doing here?" Tori stormed forward, wanting to see what he had destroyed.
"Well, John called me a little while ago, saying that he was concerned about you since you're sick, and I came over her to keep an eye on you..."
As soon as Tori approached the stove, she screamed when she stepped in something hot since she had bare feet. "Ow! Crap... What'd you do?!"
Mike laughed nervously. "Well, I was making soup..." he began in a mutter.
Once Tori wiped the boiling broth off her feet, she sighed once she got a better look at the stove. There was an empty can of chicken noodle soup on the counter, a pan with its contents on one of the burners. Of course, some of the soup had somehow made its way out of the pan and got on the stove, on the counter, and as she had discovered, on the floor.
"I'm not even going to ask what happened, but there's still enough to eat," Tori said, wondering how it was possible to mess up heating up canned soup. "Do you want some too?"
Mike smiled, seeing that she didn't seem to be too angry. "Sure. Thanks."
Tori divided the remaining soup between them into two bowls and set them on the table, relieved to be sitting down. Mike sat across from her, looking at her with concern as he started to eat his soup. "You know, there's an old wives' tale about chicken soup and colds. Thought it would help you somewhat."
"Yeah, and there is apparently something in chicken broth that helps kill cold germs," Tori told him with a slight smile, beginning to pick at her soup since she found she wasn't too hungry.
Mike raised an eyebrow. "That's more than I needed to know, Tor," he muttered.
Tori smirked at him. "What? I thought you'd want an excuse to use that thing on your shoulders for once."
"You're a pain in the ass even when you're sick, you know that?" Mike teased, smiling.
"Only to you," Tori assured him with a smile of her own.
"Thanks, I feel loved..."
When they were both done with their soup, Mike eating his entire bowl while Tori only touched a little under half of hers, she got up from the table and put the bowls in the sink. "I might as well clean this up," she muttered, signaling to the mess that was still around the stove. Tori grabbed a wet rag, but before she could make her way over to it, she suddenly felt dizzy and held onto the counter to keep from falling.
This did not go unnotcied.
"Whoa." Mike jumped up from the table and hurried over to Tori, putting his hands on her arms. "You okay?"
"Yeah, I'm fine," Tori tried to assure him. "Just had a bit of a dizzy spell for a minute there..."
Mike looked at her with concern, placing the back of his hand on her forehead. "John warned me about that small fever..." he muttered. "Here. You're going to sit down at the table while I clean up the mess."
"I don't think that's necessary, Mike," Tori replied. "I can do it..."
"Come on, Tor, I'm the one who made the mess," Mike told her, trying a different tactic. "Wouldn't it make sense if I'm the one that cleans it up?"
Tori looked at Mike for a long moment, finally handing him the rag. In truth, she was grateful that she had the chance to just sit down and relax instead of doing work. Mike smiled at her, leading her over to the table and sitting her down. Then, he started to wipe up the spilled soup.
She must have zoned out for a while because the next thing Tori realized was that Mike had set a glass of water in front of her.
"For your throat," he explained with a small smile as he sat down at the table next to her.
Tori returned the smile as she gratefully took a sip of the water. The coldness did work wonder on her sore, scratchy throat, but it also brought on another coughing fit.
"You okay?" Mike asked, patting her back.
"Yeah," Tori managed to answer once she was done coughing, her voice coming out in almost a squeak.
Once she finished her water, Tori washed out the glass and went into the living room with Mike. He sat down next to her on the couch and used the remote to turn on the television, and she brought her knees up to her chest and wrapped her arms around them to hold them close. "I'm cold," she explained when Mike gave her a concerned look, pulling the blanket that was on the back of the couch tightly around her.
Mike sighed, looking away as he put an arm around her and pulled her close to his side. Tori looked up at him curiously until he finally turned back to her. "What?" he said defensively. "This is comfortable."
Tori laughed. "Nice excuse, Mike."
"Hey." Mike narrowed his eyes at her, but there was a hint of a smile on his face as he poked her head. "If I get sick because of you..." His threat trailed off as he smiled fully, a bit of a laugh escaping him.
Smiling, Tori rested her head on his shoulder, her eyes closing. Regardless, she was grateful for the added warmth her brother provided. "Thanks, Mike," she muttered.
"Don't get used to it, Tor."
She wasn't sure how long she had sat there with her eyes closed, but when Tori slowly started to wake up, she felt a gentle hand running lovingly through her hair. Blinking a couple times to clear the sleep from her eyes, she looked up, surprised to see that she was now resting her head on John's shoulder.
"Hey, sweetheart," he said quietly, a smile appearing on his face when he saw that she was awake as he softly kissed her forehead. "How are you feeling? I think your fever broke..."
"A bit better," Tori told him, slowly sitting up. This was true. She wasn't as stuffed up as she had been, and her throat wasn't bothering her as much. "Where's Kaiya?" She expected to see the little four-year-old jumping around with excitement after the great day she must have had, wanting to share all the details with her.
John smiled. "Mike took her for a walk around the neighborhood to look at all of the Christmas decorations," he explained. "He thought he'd let you sleep for a little while longer, which you needed. Oh, speaking of, there's some tea in the kitchen. Would you like some?"
Tori raised her eyebrows at the thought that something else had been made in the kitchen, and John laughed, seeming to realize the thought that crossed her mind. "Don't worry, Mike didn't make it," he assured her. "I did when we got home. It'll just take a little heating up."
Sighing, Tori smiled up at him. "As long as there's no mess in the kitchen, yes, I'd love some."
John returned the smile, kissing her quickly before getting to his feet and leaving the living room. After a moment, Tori got up and stretched a bit before following him, smiling at the sight. John was putting her favorite mug, one with two large roses on it, in the microwave to warm up for her. She had no idea what she had done to deserve someone like him.
Knowing that she was there, John turned to her with a smile of his own. "The point was for you to stay sitting on the couch while I did this for you," he told her with a wink.
"I know." Tori smiled as she approached the table, seeing a white plastic bag sitting on it. "What's this, hun?"
"Oh, I stopped at the store on the way home," John said, walking over to her. He reached into the bag and pulled out a small box. "Cold relief." He set it on the table and pulled out another one. "In case you need it, fever reducer. And I know you hate cough drops, so we picked out some hard candy we thought you'd like. They're strawberry."
Then, he stopped and looked at Tori, a smirk on his face. She looked back at him, laughing a little at all that had he had already bought and wondering what was left in the bag. "What?"
"Well, Kaiya picked out a little treat for you," John replied, reaching into the bag and pulling out a pack of her favorite peanut butter candy. "'So Momma gets better,' she said."
Tori shook her head and smiled as she took the candy from him, leaning into him when he wrapped his arm around her and pulled her close. "You guys are too good to me," she muttered.
John smiled, kissing the side of her head. "It's just because we love you, Tor," he murmured. "I'll get your tea."
She watched as he went to the microwave and pulled the mug out before setting it on the table. Then, he sat down in the chair and gently pulled Tori down onto his lap, kissing her quickly before she took a sip of tea. It was green tea with honey, also one of her favorites.
Setting the mug back down, she leaned back against John, simply enjoying being so close to him. Tori closed her eyes, resting her head against his as he ran his hand up and down her back. This was the kind of moment she loved to spend with him...
Then, they heard the door open, and Tori sighed as she slowly stood up, John beside her, as light footsteps could be heard coming toward the kitchen. A smile appeared on Tori's face when she watched Kaiya run into the room, bundled up in her winter clothes and her eyes shining.
"Hey, baby girl," Tori said, wrapping her arms around her daughter in a tight hug. She had missed her. "Did you have a good day with Daddy?"
"Yes, Momma!" Kaiya replied as Tori began to help her out of her coat and gloves. "We got to see animaws and Santa said I was good!"
Tori laughed, kissing her daughter's forehead. "Yes, you've been a good girl this year," she told her, brushing some hair out of her face.
Kaiya laughed too. "Daddy got me ice cweam!"
"Oh, did he?" Tori turned to look over her shoulder at John, giving him a look that said, "You're going to spoil her." John smiled and shrugged. "That was very nice of him. Did you have fun looking at all of the houses with your Uncle Mike?"
"Yes, Momma! The lights were so pwetty!"
"I bet they were." Tori stood up. "All right, girl, go get your pajamas on. It's getting late. I'll be up there in a few minutes to tuck you in."
John looked up as more footsteps announced the arrival of Mike as Kaiya ran out of the room, and he watched as his best friend entered the kitchen. "I'm glad one of us enjoyed walking around the neighborhood so much," Mike muttered with a sniff.
"What, you didn't like looking at all of the pretty lights, Mike?" John teased with a slight grin, pulling Tori close to his side again.
Mike gave them both a dark glare. "Oh, yes, the lights were very pretty," he said sarcastically. "But your... your girlfriend..."
John raised an eyebrow and Tori bit her lip when Mike suddenly sneezed, groaning as he rubbed his forehead. "Got you sick..." Tori finished hesitantly with an apologetic smile.
"Damn right you did," Mike muttered through his stuffy nose, sniffing again as he took off his coat. "That's the last time I'm nice to you..."
"All right, Mike, have a seat," John said before Tori could retort, releasing her as he headed for the cupboard. He opened it, sighing again when he looked inside. "We're going to need more tea."