Author's Note: And here's the sequel, guys. I know I said I was going to wait til August, but I've been getting impatient. The story is not quite finished, but I promise you, it will be. No slacking here. If you have not read Make This Go On Forever, I recommend that you do, just to see how we got here. Otherwise... enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not have any claim to Boondock Saints/All Saints Day/Connor/Murphy or any other character that appears in the film. That belongs to Troy Duffy who I am so jealous of his brilliance. You may recognize different pieces of this story from the second movie, but I did try to put my own little twist on it if you will. Any song titles or lyrics do not belong to me. Ashes & Wine is A Fine Frenzy. Haunted is Taylor Swift. Also, this little work is unbeta'd. All mistakes belong to good ol' me.
Chapter 1 (Haunted):
"Stood there and watched you walk away… from everything we had, but I still mean every word I said… to you… he would try to take away my pain… and he just might make me smile, but the whole time I'm wishing he was you… instead…"
"An' on tha' day, YE WILL REAP ET!"
I woke with a gasp in a cold sweat, bolting to a sitting position, short of breath.
I wiped my hand over my brow and glanced to my left. My boyfriend Stefano was staring up at me, his brown eyes sleepy. "'nother nightmare?" he asked, pushing himself up on his elbows and letting out a yawn.
I nodded. "Yeah… but, I'm fine, go back to sleep," I urged.
"You sure?" he asked, an eyebrow raised.
I forced a smile and brushed him off. "Seriously, I'm fine. I'm gonna go get some water and then try to go back to sleep myself."
"You wanna talk about it?" he asked.
I shook my head. "Nothing to talk about," I reassured him. "I don't even remember what it was about anymore."
He nodded slowly before lying back down and closing his eyes, hugging the pillow to his head. I managed to pull myself out of bed and grabbed my cell phone off the bedside table. I walked out of the room and pulled the door closed behind me with a gentle click before shuffling out to the kitchen. I pulled myself up on the counter and pressed "6" on my speed dial, lifting the phone to my ear.
"'lo?" a voice clogged with sleep answered after 3 rings.
"I dreamt about it again," I quietly replied as way of greeting, glancing at my closed bedroom door.
"Dammit, Kher, it's..." I heard Ava move on the other end, knowing she was looking at the clock. "It's 3am," she growled. "I have to be at the hospital in two hours."
"I'm sorry, but who else can I talk to about this?" I asked quietly, my hand moving to gently touch my necklace, my fingers absently rubbing over the diamond ring.
She sighed on the other end. "Okay, okay. I'm here. What happened this time?"
I leaned my head against the cupboard behind me, pulling my knees to my chin. "The same. The trial. It's always the trial."
"Maybe you should try talking to someone about this…" she suggested.
I scoffed. "That's what I'm doing. I'm talking to you."
"You know that's not what I mean," she retorted.
I sighed. "You saying I need my head shrunk?"
"We both know you're a little nutty," she teased.
I chuckled. "I guess."
"Seriously, though, Kher. What does Stefano think about all of this?"
"Um..." I stalled.
"You still haven't told him what the nightmares are! How can he not know? He sleeps with you and you have these at least 3 times a week!" she hissed in disbelief.
"C'mon, A, what the hell am I supposed to say? 'Oh, Stef, honey, you know those twins that your boss hates that killed his daddy? Well, I was screwing one of them and we would've gotten married if he didn't have to flee the country. Oh and guess what? I dream about him practically every night and I think I'm still in love with him after 8 years!'" I replied sarcastically.
"Well, maybe not in so many words," she retorted. "The cliff's notes version should suffice.
"Oh, fuck you," I muttered grumpily. "How's Aiden?" I asked.
"Oh, no. Do not change the subject right now," she growled. "If you can do that, you can take your ass back to bed and leave me in peace."
"Fine," I whined. "Call me tomorrow?"
"Okay. And we will discuss this at a more civilized hour," she told me haughtily.
I snorted. "Yeah, okay. Sleep well."
"You, too… And Kher?'
"It's been 8 years... you need to let it go," she told me gently.
I sighed, lifting the ring around my neck to look at it. "Have you?" I asked quietly.
She hesitated. "As best I can," she offered. I heard the click as she hung up the phone. I slowly pulled the phone from my ear and set it next to me on the counter, gripping my necklace in my left hand. I sighed and rested my forehead on my knees, my arms wrapped around my calves. Eight years. I couldn't believe that I hadn't heard from him or seen him in so long. I would've thought my memory would have erased pieces of him, but I could still remember everything like it was only yesterday, almost like a curse. I sucked in a shaky breath, remembering our last night together before watching him execute Yakavetta. A tear rolled down my cheek as snapshots rolled through my mind.
I jumped as the memory was shattered. I lifted my head and saw Stefano standing in the kitchen. "Baby, what are you doing up?" I asked, wiping my eyes.
"What's wrong?" he asked, crossing the kitchen to stand in front of me, his hands planted on either side of me on the counter.
I shook my head. "I'm good, just had to talk to Ava for a minute."
He raised an eyebrow. "At 3am?" he asked skeptically.
I shrugged. "Girl talk happens at all hours."
He scoffed. "You said you didn't need to talk."
I gave him another shrug. "I just needed to check in with her, that's all."
He gave me a look but seemed to let it go. "Come back to bed," he commanded, standing up straight and grabbing my wrist.
I sighed and pushed myself off the counter letting him lead me back to the bedroom. "I guess I do need some sleep."
We crawled into bed and Stefano snuggled up to my back and kissing me on the neck, throwing an arm over my waist as I pulled the comforter to my chin. "Get some sleep, okay? I love you."
I attempted to blink back my tears as my throat closed. "Love you too," I replied quietly as tears coursed down my cheeks and Connor's face filled my mind as he did every night.
I stepped out of the shower the next morning and wrapped a towel around me before walking back to my room. Stefano stood at my mirror checking his hair.
"I think you're perfectly tousled, baby," I told him with a smile, pecking him on the cheek before walking to my closet.
"My hair is winning today," he complained, smoothing the unruly piece.
"Trying to impress someone?" I asked, glancing over my shoulder.
"A man always has to look his best," he retorted.
I rolled my eyes and chuckled, grabbing some clothes before walking to my dresser. Stefano's arm snaked out and I let out a yelp as it curled around my waist, pulling me to him. "Stef! I gotta get ready!" I complained.
"I'm just saying good morning," he responded, kissing me briefly.
"Well, good morning. Now, let me go or I'll be late," I told him with a smile and a peck. He smiled and let me go, grabbing his suit jacket from the end of the bed. "Late for what? Aren't you off today?"
"Not the point. Time's a'wastin'," I told him matter-of-factly. "Will I see you tonight?" I asked, rifling through my underwear drawer.
"I don't know," he replied, slipping the jacket over his shoulders and buttoning it. "Boss said we needed to talk."
I cocked my head to the side. "Oh?"
He shrugged and ran a hand through his hair one last time. "I really don't know what it's about. But, I'll call you later, okay?"
I nodded. "Okay, have a good day."
He walked over and kissed me on the top on the head. "You too. Love you."
"Love you too," I replied quickly, turning my focus back to my dresser as he walked out. I sighed as I heard the front door close and slumped against the dresser, rubbing a hand over my face. "Get it together, Kher," I mumbled, slipping my robe over my shoulders and wrapping my towel around my hair. I walked out to the living room and turned on the television. I upped the volume to hear it from my room before going back to get ready. I tossed my robe on the bed and I slipped into my bra and underwear, humming quietly to myself. I stopped as I let out a huge yawn and rubbed my eyes before slipping my robe back over my shoulders, leaving it open. I hadn't really managed to sleep. Connor's face was all I saw every time I closed my eyes, jerking me awake. I shook my head attempting to clear it as I reached for my moisturizer.
"...pennies on the eyes..."
My head automically jerked up towards the living room. That was the calling card of only one… make that two, Boston "murderers". I pulled my robe tight around me and moved to the living room, standing in front of the television. The story of a murdered priest was the top story, shot execution style, two taps to the back of his head, pennies on his eyes.
"...and so, the question on everyone's mind... are they back?"
I snorted and grabbed the remote. "Idiots," I muttered, clicking the television off. "Of course they aren't back," I mumbled, walking back to my room. "And if they were, they wouldn't kill a damn priest." I sighed and pulled the towel from my head, absently rubbing at the half-dried locks as I pondered. I grabbed my hair dryer and moved to turn it on. I suddenly jumped when my cell phone let out its shrill ringtone from its' spot beside my bed. I sighed, setting down the dryer and walked over, picking up the obnoxious piece of plastic. I glanced at the screen and rolled my eyes when I saw it was Ava. I picked it up and held it to my ear.
"It's not them," I greeted, walking back to the dresser, my free hand teasing my hair.
She scoffed. "Do they not teach you how to say 'hello' where you come from?" she asked.
"What's the point when I have caller id?" I retorted, putting the phone on speaker and setting it on the dresser.
"Anyway, what are you talking about?"
"Have you been watching the news?" I asked, smearing moisturizer over my face.
"You mean, the priest?"
"Well, obviously, it's not them," she retorted. "I don't care what a priest did; they wouldn't kill a man of the cloth."
"Pretty much," I replied with a sigh, throwing my hair into a messy bun before reaching for my chapstick. "So, if you didn't call about that, what's up?"
"What are you doing?" she asked. "You're off today, right?"
I tossed my robe on the bed and pulled my shirt over my head. "Yeah, I'm off. I'm getting ready to go run some errands and I have to go grocery shopping later. Why, what's up?"
She sighed. "You wouldn't want to take Aiden with you, would you?"
"He's not at school?" I asked, pulling my jeans over my hips.
"No, they closed for meetings or something."
"You had to bring him to work again?" I asked, checking my appearance in the mirror before slipping into some flats and throwing a purse over my shoulder.
"Fuckin' sitter. She was supposed to pick him up but she cancelled. Dirty whore."
I snickered and grabbed the phone taking it off speaker and lifting it to my ear. "It's fine. I'm good with little man. How long do you need me to keep him?"
"I should be off at 5. I'd probably stop by your apartment around 6:30 to pick him up."
I nodded as I walked out of the room, grabbing my keys from the kitchen counter. "Okay, I'll come pick him up and keep an eye on him."
"You're a lifesaver!"
I snickered. "I'll see you in about 30."