Hey y'all! It's Miley and stuff like that!

Wow...Too much SNL.

Anywho. Here's part two! Hope you're enjoying this!

~Rosey


So That's What They Call a Family

PART TWO

When Jack woke up, he found he was colder than he remembered, and his teeth were chattering. He raised a hand to his aching forehead and found a cold cloth there, and he blinked, confused.

"Jack!" Mrs. Jacobs was suddenly at his side, a smile on her face. "I'm glad you're finally awake. Your fever got worse. You had me worried there for a moment!"

Jack rose an eyebrow. He worried her? He didn't mean to worry her…But he had to admit, having someone worry about him felt pretty good. "I'm fine," he croaked.

Mrs. Jacobs removed the cloth from his forehead and placed the back of her hand there, biting her lip. "You're still running a fever. If it doesn't go down we might have to call for a doctor."

"A doctor?" Jack bolted up, which turned out to be a bad idea. He groaned, grabbing his head.

Mrs. Jacobs shushed him, gently pushing him back down. "It's alright, dear. I'm sure your fever will break soon and if it doesn't, doctors aren't so bad."

"Ain't never been to one in my life," Jack grumbled, crossing his arms. "And I ain't about to start now."

"You've never been to a doctor?" Mrs. Jacobs was shocked. "What about when you were younger? When your mother was alive?"

Jack fell silent, and Mrs. Jacobs regretted bringing up his mother's death instantly. She hurriedly changed the subject. "Do you think you could try some more soup?"

Jack's stomach rumbled in answer and he reddened, looking down. "Um, I guess I'm a little hungry."

Mrs. Jacobs laughed, good natured, hurrying to the kitchen and returning seconds later with some warm soup. Jack took the bowl and attempted to raise the spoon to his lips, but found his hand was so shaky he couldn't hold the silverware. Mrs. Jacobs gently took the bowl from his hands and dipped a small spoonful, holding it out to him. "Here."

Jack rose an eyebrow. "What? Ya gonna feed me? Like I'm a baby or somethin'?"

"Jack," Mrs. Jacobs mumbled gently. "It's alright. And I won't tell anyone. Your reputation will still be safe," she added with a wink.

The seventeen-year-old looked at her skeptically for a moment before sniffing and sighing, giving in. "Okay. Fine. But if anyone finds out, I'm denyin' it evah happened."

"Alright," she smiled, holding the spoon to his lips. "Now eat up."

Jack swallowed the spoonful, wincing as it went down his raw throat. "Still hoits," he admitted weakly.

"I'm sorry, dear," she said sympathetically, holding out another spoonful. "But you have to eat something to get your strength back."

After the bowl was about half empty, Jack sneezed hard, coughed, and said he didn't want anymore right now, thank you. Mrs. Jacobs smiled and nodded, setting it aside. "You ate quite a bit. That should feel better, I'd think."

"Except for, ya know, da fire in me throat," he sniffed.

Mrs. Jacobs nodded in sympathy, reaching for a bottle of red liquid on the side table. "Here, have some of this. It's cold medicine. It'll make you feel much better."

"I'd rather not," Jack winced away from the spoon that was suddenly before his face. "It smells like Blink in da mornin'."

"If you want your fever to go down or your throat to stop hurting, you need to take some of this," she said firmly.

Jack sighed and gave in yet again, swallowing the foul liquid. He winced hard as it went down, and then looked over at Mrs. Jacobs through squinted eyes. "What, ya tryin' ta kill me or somethin'?"

Mrs. Jacobs just laughed softly, setting the spoon and medicine aside. "Just watch. You'll feel better before you know it."

Jack opened his mouth to respond, but only managed a weak cough. He groaned, laying back into the pillows. "I hope you're right."

Mrs. Jacobs put her hand to his forehead again before putting the cloth back over his brow. "I'm going to go get a thermometer. I want to take your temperature."

"Huh?"

She turned around in surprise. "Haven't you ever had your temperature taken?"

"Uhh...Maybe. Wid my muddah. But I don't remember."

"Doesn't Mr. Kloppmann take you boys temperature when you're sick?"

"No."

Mrs. Jacobs shook her head, getting the thermometer out of the cabinet and going over to Jack. "I worry so much about you, Jack."

Jack was stunned again by these words as the thermometer was put in his mouth. As his temperature was being determined, he stay still, letting these words play in his head. She worried about him. Somebody actually worried about him.

Mrs. Jacobs broke him from his thoughts, removing the small glass stick from his mouth. She looked at it, worry on her face. "102.5 degrees," she mumbled. "Jack, why on Earth did you leave your coat at the Lodging House?"

Jack sighed, too tired to make up a story. "I didn't leave it back at da Lodging House. I sold it for money so I could eat."

"What?" Mrs. Jacobs exclaimed in shock. "Oh Jack, you know you can always come here for food!"

"But I don't want charity," he groaned, his high fever causing him to drop the tough-guy act for a moment.

"Jack, it's not charity. You know you're like a son to us."

"Like a son!" Jack rasped, his voice as loud as it could be in it's sore state. "But I ain't your real son. So it is charity! And I hate bein' a charity case!"

Mrs. Jacobs bit her lip, taking his hand in hers. "Jack, we all love you very, very much. And any time you are here it is NOT charity. It's like...A son returning home. We have never, ever thought of you as a charity case. So don't you go feeling like you are one."

Jack took a pause, thinking, breathing. "Mama-" he stopped, falling silent. Where did that come from? He didn't mean it... "I'm sorry."

"Jack." Mrs. Jacobs' voice was serious and gentle. "You can call me Mama whenever you want to. Everyone needs a mother figure in their lives. Even you. And I'd be honored if I could be that to you."

"Shoot," Jack mumbled, sniffing and coughing hard. "You know you already are dat to me. I'm just too stupid to admit it."

"You're not stupid, Jack," she smiled gently. "Stubborn, yes. But not stupid."

Jack paused, sniffing. "I don't need no legal guardian, ya know. Just...someone I can come ta if I need it."

Mrs. Jacobs beamed, nodding. "I'll always be that for you, Jack."

Jack sneezed and then grinned weakly, looking up at her tiredly. "Tank you. For everyting."

"Of course," she smiled, patting his hand sweetly. "Now Jack, as your mother figure, I must insist you eat more soup."

Jack looked up at her with a sheepish smile, his voice hoarse and tired. "Will you feed it to me?"

Mrs. Jacobs just grinned. "Of course."


Well? What did you think? Good? Bad? Should never see the light of day? Whatever you think, please tell me in a

REVIEW!

But flames will be used to smoke Pulitzer out of his big ol' fancy house.

~Rosey