Chapter 7-Almost Paradise
Jon was running the vacuum in his apartment. He wasn't even sure if the thing still worked since he hadn't used it in a long time because he never had a reason to clean. No one ever came over to his apartment and when they did, they would get too drunk to notice the mess anyway. Jon took a deep breath and let out a long sigh, he knew it was the end of his bachelor pad.

The walls were bare and white and nothing hung from them, but a large flat screen TV in the center of the living room with a large wood and glass TV stand with an Xbox and a Blu-ray player. Jon never cared about material things but every once and a while he splurged. The townhouse that he lived in was two bedrooms and was a little bit on the small side, but to most people, it would have been considered large. Jon walked the three bags of trash that included beer bottles and beer cans that he found throughout his house out to the dumpster and he returned to his bedroom. He had thrown away his old bed sheets that had seen their fair share of one night stands, he had even went as far as going online to look up ways to clean a mattress; but when he saw how hard it would be for one person to do, he decided to buy a brand new California King Bed. He had the money to afford the bed he had dreamed about his whole life, so he used the excuse to buy it.

He had just finished up cleaning the apartment when Ava texted him to let him know that her plane was landing in 20 minutes, so he took a quick shower and headed to McCarran International Airport.

Standing outside of the terminal of Southwest Airlines with his sunglasses on and his hat pulled down, Jon knew his disguise wouldn't keep him incognito; but for the time being, he hoped no fans would stop him. Looking around the terminal, he spotted Ava sitting in a chair a few feet in front of him.

"Hey baby," he whispered sitting down next to her.

"Hey," she replied smiling and he wrapped his arm around her as they kissed. "I missed you."

"I missed you too. I'm so happy you're here."

"I'm happy that I'm here too. I've been waiting for this."

Jon heard a small growl from a bag by Ava's feet and she reached down and he saw the brown floppy ears and small head of Roxie pop out.

"I hope you don't mind that I brought her, my neighbor is on vacation and it was too late to put her in a kennel."

Jon smiled as he reached down to pet the small dog, "I didn't know rats were allowed on airplanes."

"Hey," Ava whined. "She likes you. Poor little thing has been sleeping on your pillow since you left a couple weeks ago."

Roxie jumped into Jon's lap and he slung Ava's bag over his shoulder and took her hand as they stood up to leave the airport.

"Are you hungry?"

"Yeah."

"I don't have any groceries at the house and definitely no dog treats or food, do you want to stop at the store on the way home? We're only here for a few days, but we can get what we need."

"Jon. don't just buy groceries because I'm here. I am perfectly happy with take out."

"Ava, let me take care of you."

She sighed and leaned over to kiss him, "I love you."

"I love you, too."

Jon handed Roxie over to Ava as he put the bags in the trunk of his car and she got in the passenger seat. Ava laughed when the little dog stood up on the driver's seat watching Jon intensely before she began whining when he walked around the car. He opened the door and she jumped in Ava's lap before standing up on the console to lick his face.

"She likes sitting in your lap when you drive. If you put the window down and let her get air, she won't jump."

"Colby said his dog does that all of the time. It must be a dog thing."

Sitting back, Jon motioned for Roxie to come sit in his lap and she immediately jumped in, sitting down on his left thigh with her head resting on the door panel as the wind blew her small ears.

"See, I told you."

Jon smiled and reached over and grabbed Ava's hand. "I uh...cleaned my apartment. The bed is brand new and there's new sheets and pillow cases."

Ava smiled and squeezed his hand tightly, "Sorry for intruding in your life."

"You're not intruding in it, you're changing it," he replied bringing her hand to his lips, placing a kiss on her knuckles before rubbing his thumb gently over it causing her to smile.

They pulled into the parking lot of a Whole Foods a short time later, and Jon cracked the windows for Roxie before the two of them walked into the store.

"What do you want for dinner," he asked.

"It doesn't matter, I'm not picky."

"I'm pretty good with spaghetti."

"Spaghetti sounds good, haven't had it homemade in a while."

"Spaghetti it is, anything else?"

"Want me to make a cake?"

"Mmm, yeah. Cake sounds good."

"Chocolate or red velvet?"

"Pick one," Jon said. "Either one of those is fine."

"I'll make homemade red velvet, that box stuff is gross and doesn't do it justice."

"Knock yourself out, baby. My oven has never even been used and I bought it when I leased my place."

"Seriously," she asked.

Jon shrugged his shoulders, "I don't know shit about baking and it's not like my bitch of a mother visits and bakes me anything. I just cook for myself sometimes or I come here and buy prepackaged weighed meals."

Ava kissed his cheek and the two of them walked around the store finishing their grocery shopping. Ava grabbed a basket and put in several cans of dog food and a few bags of treats. "She's a spoiled brat," Jon said earning a scoff from Ava. "Only dog I know eating organic dog food."

"She needs to keep her small body."

Jon laughed and Ava slapped his chest lightly, "Only thing she's keeping are those big ass fucking ears."

"Asshole," she muttered and he kissed her cheek as they made their way to the meats section of the store.

"Do you want steak or chicken for dinner tomorrow," he asked as Ava finished an email on her cell phone.

"Jon," she scolded again.

"Ava," he mocked placing both in the shopping cart. "Steak and chicken it is."

Ava wrapped her arms around his neck and placed a kiss on his lips. "You're too good for me."

Jon chuckled softly as he wrapped his arms around her waist, "You got it all wrong, you're the one who is too good for me."

"You don't give yourself enough credit," she replied kissing his lips quickly before pulling away so they didn't make a scene in the supermarket. "I love you."

Smiling at the words he had heard for the third time that day, Jon rubbed her cheek with his thumb. "I love you too, baby."

Ava smiled as they made their way to pay for everything so they could get home and spend time together in the privacy of Jon's house. As he unloaded the cart onto the belt of the register, Ava grabbed Roxie's food and her cake stuff and sat it on the belt behind Jon's groceries. Glancing down when her phone chimed letting her know she had a new email, she didn't pay attention to Jon as he told the cashier to add her things on with his.

"You ready," he asked when she turned around.

"Yeah, as soon as I pay for my stuff."

"I already paid for it, let's go."

"Jon..."

"Let's go home."

He smiled down at her and made their way to his car where Roxie was excitedly barking and jumping from seat to seat. Ava got in and Roxie jumped in her lap once again. Jon packed the trunk and they headed to his house.

"There's a tree she can piss on right there."

"She's a girl, Jon," Ava laughed. "She squats."

He smiled as he carried her luggage in before he carried in the groceries. Roxie ran around the yard excitedly and yelped when Jon squatted down and patted his knees.

"This is really nice, Jon," Ava said looking around the apartment complex.

"Thank you."

"I'll be honest, I expected a small apartment in a rundown part of town. It's more you."

He laughed as he stood up causing Roxie to growl in protest, "It's not the first time that I have heard that. Everyone expects that, I just figured why not splurge a little?"

"I splurge all of the time."

"How many pairs of shoes did you pack?"

"10."

"That's a little insane, don't you think?"

Ava scoffed, "I got to have options while we're the road."

"You're crazy," Jon said as he went straight to the kitchen and poured spaghetti sauce out of a jar and into a pot while Ava grabbed a bowl from above the counter.

"Pot meet the kettle," she smiled as he poured another sauce and added garlic to it.

Ava began measuring out everything that she needed for the cake, and Jon watched as she held the measuring cup up so that it was eye level before she'd pour it in the bowl. His cell phone buzzed in his back pocket and he pulled it out and saw Drake Younger's name on the screen.

"'Sup dude," he said kissing Ava's cheek as he made his way into the living room.

"MOX, my man" he replied. "What's up?"

"Not much, chilling at home in Vegas. What are you doing?"

"I'm currently having a tea party with Sophia while Valerie is out grocery shopping. The boys are coming over this weekend, you coming?"

"Um...no. My uh...girlfriend is here."

"Girlfriend," Drake asked. "You're seeing someone?"

"Yeah man, she's really great," Jon replied. "We've been together a couple months now."

"Well, I'll be damned. Mox got himself a girlfriend. I never thought I'd see the day."

"We were friends for a while before we started dating. She works for the company and we met when she was put in charge of our storyline. She's from Ohio too."

"What's her name?"

"Ava."

"I'm really happy for you, dude. It sounds to me like you're in love with a great girl."

Jon sighed before smiling when he looked in the kitchen and saw Ava bent over, so she could put the pan in the oven. He walked up behind her and put his arm around her waist. "I really do love her, man. I can't wait for you to meet her, but hey I got to go. I'm making her dinner and haven't really done much."

"Alright dude, I'll talk to you later. Good luck."

"Thank you. Tell Valerie that I said hi."

"I will. Later bro."

"Later."

Ava smiled as Jon kissed her and pressed her against the counter. "You turned me into a total pussy," he said smiling as he put his forehead against hers. "That was one of my good friends from CZW. He's married with a kid and another one on the way. You'd really like him and his wife."

"Good, I can't wait to meet them."

Jon smiled, "Cake smells good, and the sauce is almost done. I should probably start the noodles so we can eat. You have to be starving, I'm sorry."

"Don't worry about it. Cake should be done soon. I should go take a quick shower, keep your eye on the cake."

Jon's face went pale causing Ava to laugh, "Jon, it's ok. Just stick a knife in the center of it and if it comes out clean, it's done. I'll be no more than ten minutes."

"I never baked a fucking cake before, what if I burn it."

"You'll be fine, baby."

She kissed his cheek and walked up the steps to his upstairs. "Which room is yours?"

"First one on the left. Bathroom is across the hall."

The door closed and Jon sighed as he looked down at Roxie who was sitting at his feet swatting his leg with her paw. "I guess you're hungry."

She swatted his leg again and he pulled a can of dog food from the bag on the counter and grabbed a plate from the counter and scooped half of the can onto the plate and sat it down on the floor. Grabbing a small bowl, he filled it with water from the fridge and placed it next to the bowl. He heard the shower running upstairs and he looked in the oven and saw that the cake was higher than when it went upstairs.

Jon stuck a knife in the center of it, saw it was done and sat it on the counter behind him. Ava came down and Jon was mixing a pot of finished pasta and she wrapped her arms around him from behind. "That looks good, baby."

Jon turned around and put his arm around her waist. He noticed she only had on a pair of yoga shorts and a tank top and he swallowed hard. "Your phone has been going crazy," he said quickly to get his mind off of the barely there outfit.

Ava walked over to her phone and saw the multiple Facebook alerts that were on the screen. "Hey babe, do you know a Drake Wuertz?"

"Seriously," he asked. "How the hell did he find you?"

"I have no idea, there's a request from a Sam Johnson and Jason Myers too."

"Those motherfuckers."

Ava laughed, "Friends of yours?"

"Drake is who called me earlier and I guess Sami and Jason heard him talking to me. Jason is Cody Hawk."

"The guy who trained you?"

Jon smiled, "Yeah, the guy who trained me. You read up a lot on me."

"I tried to. I still feel like I don't know much about you."

Jon sighed, "We'll talk about it during dinner."

Ava sat down on one of the chairs and noticed her notifications on Facebook were starting to add up. "What a creep," she said.

"What?"

"Your buddy Sami liked all of my vacation pictures from last year. I also happen to have a bikini or a slutty dress on in all of them."

"Seriously?"

Ava handed Jon her phone and he went through the twenty pictures that Sami liked and he had to talk himself out of taking Ava right there on the table. "I'm going to kill him, I'm really sorry. They must have looked your name up on Facebook and found you."

"The picture of us as my profile picture doesn't help either."

"I'm in your picture?"

Ava smiled, "Yeah, it's us after you won your title before we were together plus it says I'm in a relationship."

"I'll call him and tell him to stop if you want. Sami has no filter."

"Kind of like you," Ava joked causing him to shake his head.

"Don't make me taint your food."

"I'll eat the whole cake myself," she warned causing him to glare at her.

"That's not fair."

"Oh well," she smiled as he plated two bowls of spaghetti. "I should probably put the icing on the cake then sit down. Give me a couple of minutes."

Jon sat the plates down on the table and watched as Ava walked around the kitchen like she belonged there. He hoped that one day he'd be able to see her like this every time they were off. Ava put the cake in the refrigerator and grabbed two beers and sat down at the table next to Jon.

"What all do you want to know about my past," he asked and she shrugged her shoulders.

"I want to know stuff I didn't read on the internet like you being on drugs in Puerto Rico, the match where the rubber blade practically sawed your head, and I want to know anything that is just you."

Jon sighed, "There's not much to tell besides what you know. All of my promos were based on real experiences. I was a drug runner to put food in my mouth and on the table, I hate Cincinnati and you are the first person I have fallen in love with."

"Jon," she whispered grabbing his hand. "I don't know how you did it on your own. You are one of the strongest people I've ever met and I love you so much."

He squeezed her hand and leaned forward to kiss her. "I really don't deserve you."

Ava shook her head, "Stop saying that. You deserve me and so much more."

Sighing, he nodded his head and placed his hand on her thigh. "Let me know how the cake is. I hope I didn't use too much cocoa powder."

"It's really good, you should bake more often," he replied licking his lips of frosting.

"I will, I promise."

The two of them sat in a comfortable silence for a while and Ava smiled at him as she took his plate to the kitchen and began washing the dishes.

Jon came up behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her to him. Ava turned around and leanes up to kiss him, her nails scratching the back of his neck. Jon moaned when he ran her other hand down his back and squeeezed his ass in her hands.

He picked her up and sat her down on the counter. She tugged at his white t-shirt and he pulled it over his head before slamming his lips back onto hers. Ava moaned when he moved down to her neck, and sucked down the spot that he knew drove her crazy.

"Jon," she gasped as his hands slid under her shirt and he squeezed her breasts in his hands.

"If I'm going too far, tell me to stop," he said into her ear and she traced her fingers down his back.

"Don't you dare stop," she whispered as she reached down and pulled her tanktop over her head. Jon growled and kissed her again, slowly trailing his lips down her neck where he licked and sucked his way to her breasts as she shrieked as soon as his lips wrapped around her nipple.

She gripped his hair as he continued his assault on her chest while he looked up at her, his blue eyes meeting hers. She felt him pull her shorts down her legs and she hissed when his long fingers traced her entrance.

"So wet," he mumbled his head against her stomach.

"Please, Jon," she begged and he looked up at her with a smirk before taking the first lick of her core.

"FUCK," she cried out gripping his hair tighter.

"You taste so fucking good, baby," he reassured her as he expertly sucked her bud into his mouth causing her to cry out his name. Her grip on his hair getting tighter. Ava felt her orgasm building and when he thrusted two fingers inside of her, she cried out on his third stroke of her g-spot. Jon continued to lick and suck until she pulled his face away and kissed him.

"I love you," he whispered placing his forehead against hers.

Ava could barely catch her breath but she looked into his eyes, "I know you do and I love you too."

Jon wrapped his arms around her waist and buried his face into her hair. He had never been this happy in his entire life and he knew he had to do whatever it takes to make their relationship work. It'd kill him if it didn't.