Flash Fiction: Chain Reaction – Part 14

This entry is part 14 of 20 in the Flash Fiction: Chain Reaction

Written in 60 minutes.


Kelly’s: Dining Room

This was not a good idea.

Somewhere in Elizabeth’s fevered brain, those words were surely being screamed, but she couldn’t hear them over the pounding of her heart, the sensation of Jason’s hands in her hair, the feeling of his skin beneath her hands as she slid them beneath his t-shirt, stumbling backwards as she felt herself being lifted onto the table, heard the crash of the napkin dispenser hitting the ground—

“Wait, wait—” With willpower she didn’t know existed, Elizabeth turned her mouth away from Jason’s, drawing in much needed oxygen, but he never missed a beat, his lips nibbling down the line of her throat, to her collarbone— “Wait—” she said again—covering his mouth with her hands, and then got his attention.

They stared at each other for a long moment, and Elizabeth nearly forgot everything all over again except how right it felt to be in his arms, to have her legs wrapped around his waist—

If they’d been anywhere else—

“Anyone can see us,” Elizabeth said, because at least that much would get through to both of them. Jason closed his eyes for a moment, rested his forehead against hers, then stepped back, carefully tugging her back to her feet, keeping one arm around her waist. “The, um, windows—”

“Yeah,” he managed, his voice rough. He looked at all the glass, giving them an excellent view of the courtyard which was thankfully empty. But anyone could have walked past and watched Jason Morgan ravishing a woman other than his fiancee on the tables inside.

“What are we doing?” Elizabeth whispered. “What are we doing, Jason? Didn’t we decide we weren’t these people?”

“What kind of people are we then?” Jason stepped back, reluctantly letting his arms fall to his side.

“I don’t know, are you still engaged?” she asked pointedly, and he sighed, looked away. “We have heat, sure. And we’re good on our own. We’ve always known that. When it’s just the two of us, it’s perfect. No surprise that the sex is good. Amazing,” she corrected when he just looked at her. “But as much as I want to be here for you, to be your friend, I’m not going to be the one you turn to when your real life gets too hard. Because if you go home to her this time, I might lose my mind—”

“I haven’t told her yet,” Jason cut in. He stooped down, picked up the napkin dispenser, set it back on the table. “I was going to. Maybe right there in the courtyard. But then something happened, and I had to take care of it. When it was over, all I wanted to do was find you. See you. Maybe I should have waited. No, I know I should have, it’s just…” He shook his head. “Never mind. Never mind. You’re right. I’ll talk to her tomorrow and then—”

“What happened?” Elizabeth asked and he fell silent. “I don’t know, am I allowed to ask that?”

“You can always ask. I just…I just can’t always answer. But—” He dragged a hand down his face. “Sonny’s having issues. I’ve never told you how bad they are, but right now, it’s as bad as it’s ever been and I don’t think what I’m doing is enough. That’s why I can’t talk to Courtney tonight. She’s with Carly at a safehouse.”

Elizabeth sat down, dread flooding her veins. “Is she all right?”

“Yeah. Mostly.” He returned to his seat across from her. “Sonny thought he saw Lily. On the balcony. He didn’t recognize Carly. When Max got inside, he had her by the wrists, was shaking her. Michael saw it all.”

She reached across the table, found his hand, covered it with her own. He turned her hand in his own, rubbed his thumb across her palm. “Max got her across the hall, and he called me. He didn’t know Lily was dead. Couldn’t remember it. He knew me, though. So…that’s something. I sedated him. He’s sleeping. And I just…I wanted to get on the bike and keep going,” he admitted in a quiet voice, so low that she could scarcely hear him. “I calmed Carly down. Courtney got home. She didn’t want to go, but I told her to. I couldn’t deal with her just then. I didn’t know what I’d say or do. I didn’t even want to look at her,” Jason bit out. “I just wanted them all to go away. They did. But they never stay away.”

He exhaled slowly, stared down at their joined hands. “So I got on the bike, and I came here. I thought if I just saw you, even if I just looked at you, I’d…I don’t know. Feel something different. And I know that’s not fair to you—”

“Don’t make me break out the line again,” Elizabeth said, and he looked at her, startled by the interruption, by what she’d said, and his laugh was short, almost a bitter sound that he immediately stifled by releasing her hand and putting both hands over his face.

“I’m going to tell her. I know how that sounds,” he added when she said nothing. “I’ve spent the last month trying to get back something I don’t think existed in the first place, and I just—I don’t want to pretend anymore. I just want something that’s mine. Instead of—” Jason stopped, swallowed hard.

“No, go ahead, finish it. There’s nothing you can say to me that’s going to change how I feel, Jason.” Elizabeth tipped her head.

“You said it, last year. Sonny’s enforcer. First, last, always,” he muttered with a bitterness that she didn’t know he had inside of him. “I told you, that stayed with me. Don’t apologize for it—” he added when she opened her mouth. “You were right. That’s all I am. I live and breath Sonny’s life. His wife, his son, his sister, that’s my entire world, and I did it to myself. I did it willingly. Courtney fits, that’s what I told you,” Jason said, and she bit her lip. “She fits because she’s made Sonny and Carly her whole life. That’s all we talk about. Is Sonny okay today? Is Carly too stressed? What should we do to make sure Michael isn’t affected? How do I handle it if it’s a bad day? Or today’s a good day, so let’s make sure we don’t do or say anything that throws it off because it doesn’t take much—I didn’t even know my sister was dying until she had to tell me.”

“She wasn’t telling anyone, Jason,” Elizabeth said, reaching for his hand, but he avoided it this time. “But I know what you mean. She wasn’t telling anyone. But if either of us had been paying attention—we know her better than anyone. Between the two of us, we’d have wrestled her to the ground and dragged the truth out. You’re not the only one who feels like let her down.”

“I just don’t want it to be like this anymore. It’s not enough. It shouldn’t have taken a year for me to figure that out, and I’m sorry. I’m sorry it did. I should have ran after you that night. Stopped you. Never lied in the first place—”

“We’re not going to do that, remember? Think about the ways we hurt each other. You told me that, and now I’m telling you. I didn’t hold on when I should have. We both made mistakes. Let’s just…let’s leave that in the past where it belongs.” She cleared her throat. “And we don’t have to get into the rest of it. I really do understand why you haven’t…why you haven’t told Courtney. I can understand you wanting to wait until this is—until Sonny’s through this—”

“I’m not—that’s not what I’m going to do.” Jason frowned, his eyes sharp, focused on her, some of the misery burned away. “I told you. I realized what was important, and I came here to tell you that. I just—I got distracted by Ric, and then—everything else. I know—I know we can’t — you need me to end things and I’m going to. But I told you. I want my life to be my own again. And I want you in it.”

Elizabeth pressed her lips together, took a deep breath. “Okay.”

“You don’t believe me—”

“I do. I do,” she repeated when he just shook his head. “It’s just—you’ve—there’s been a lot today. Emily’s news, and that scene with Courtney. Everything with Sonny and Carly, and then Ric—I just think maybe—if you’re ready to end your engagement, your relationship with Courtney, okay. I don’t know if…” She bit her lip. “This is going to sound insane, and it’s not what I want, so believe me, I hate what I’m about to say. But maybe you need time on your own. Just you. I mean, I’ll be here. Friends,” she added. “But it’s been a lot this last year. You came home, and there was Alcazar, Brenda, Ric, and—it’s just been so much. For both of us.”

“You’re probably right.” Jason grimaced, looked at his hands. “I’ve screwed this up,” he muttered. “From the beginning.”

“You did the best you could. I know you did, Jason. That’s just who you are. You tried so hard not to hurt anyone that you ended up hurting yourself the most. Everyone expects so much from you, and you’re just—you’re human, okay? Remember that. You’re not responsible for Sonny and Carly. For Courtney. For Emily. Or for me. We all make our own choices and mistakes.”

He nodded, then sighed again. He got to his feet, held out his hand and pulled her up. “I’ve missed you,” Jason said. He reached for her other hand, held them both in his, looked down at them. “This—right here—this is the most right I’ve felt in weeks. Maybe longer. That night, you know what I think about the most?” When she shook her head, he continued, “when we were just talking. Laying in bed, with you in my arms. I think about that all the time.”

Damn it. Her eyes filled. She leaned up, pressed her lips to his in a short, sweet kiss, cupping the line of his jaw. “I think about that, too. The rest of the night — that was amazing, and sure, that’s in there. But mostly, just being with you. It’s all I’ve ever needed.”

He nodded, his forehead against hers. “I have to go. Or I won’t be able to,” he admitted. “Can I—can I call you or come see you tomorrow?”

“Sure. I’d like that.”

“I’ll walk you to your building…and stay outside when you go up,” Jason said, and she laughed lightly. She scooped up her purse and the light jacket she’d grabbed.

“That’s probably a good idea.”

Morgan Penthouse: Living Room

Jason sighed, dropped his keys on the desk, then just looked at the woman sitting on the sofa. “I told you to stay with Carly tonight.”

“She called her mother.” Courtney got to her feet. “I told her that we needed to talk. And we do. First, I need to apologize for today—”

“You knew her schedule, didn’t you?” Jason asked, staring at the wooden surface of the desk. “She switched to closing, but you knew she was on the lunch shift today, didn’t you?”‘

“Yes,” Courtney said, a bit hesitantly. “I did it on purpose. I guess I wanted to know what would happen—”

“You thought I’d be reminded of how guilty I’m supposed to feel and let you set a date for the wedding.” And now he looked at her, saw the irritation in her eyes before dropping them to the ground. “Did Mike give you the schedule?”

“No. I know where he keeps it. Jason—”

He nodded, rubbed his mouth. “And then you gave a copy of it to Ric.” When her mouth just tightened, and she didn’t deny it, Jason felt sick to his stomach. “You gave him everything he needed to stalk her. That’s what he’s been doing. Every night. Did you know that?”

“I guess I don’t need to ask where you were tonight. Did you get a quickie in before coming home?” Courtney demanded, folding her arms.

“You’re not going to turn this around on me. What I did — I did. And you know, it was technically wrong because of this, but I didn’t do it to hurt you. I didn’t,” he added, when she just scoffed. “Because I just wasn’t thinking about you at all.”

“What? What does that mean?”

“It means exactly what you think it does,” he retorted. “I was with Elizabeth, and I didn’t think about you until I answered my phone the next morning. Not once. Does that bother you?” he asked.

“You’re just being cruel now to get back at me for telling Ric—”

“No, I just stopped caring what you think or feel,” Jason interrupted, and she snapped her mouth shut. “Just like you stopped caring what I thought. What I felt. I told you I didn’t want to talk about the wedding. That I wasn’t even sure I wanted to get to married. That didn’t matter to you. You set today up to hurt me, to manipulate me into doing what you wanted.”

Tears glimmered in her eyes, but Courtney just lifted her chin. “I see the gloves are off. Okay, good. Good. Now that you’re not worried about protecting my feelings, why don’t you tell me why you did it? What changed if it wasn’t the miscarriage I had?”

Jason shook his head. “You don’t want to hear this, so let’s just end it here. You can have the ring. You can have this place, I don’t care. But this is done—”

“If this is done, then I deserve to know why after everything we’d been through, after everything this last year, why did you jump into bed with Elizabeth? Why did you nearly leave me over it? Why don’t you feel guilty?” she demanded.

“Because I didn’t know there was a chance,” Jason said, and she simply stared at him.

“What? What does that mean?”

“Elizabeth told me I’d ruined any chance for us the night she walked out,” he said, the memory searing like acid. “And I believed her. But that night, I realized she was wrong. I slept with her because I wanted to. Because I’d wanted to for years, and for the first time, I realized she still gave a damn about me. Is that what you wanted to hear?”

Comments

  • Yes! Jason’s words were music to my ears! Take that Courtney !

    According to Liketoread on May 11, 2024
  • Jason actually said that he didn’t care. He might end up OK if he will just deiced that he isn’t Sonny and Carley’s caretaker.

    According to leasmom on May 11, 2024
  • Courtney deserves everything that Jason is saying. I’m so glad that he is finally telling her that it’s over. Now he can be with Elizabeth

    According to Becca on May 11, 2024
  • Yes! Another great chapter. I agree with Elizabeth that Jason needs to have some alone time. He can’t be with Elizabeth yet. Courtney is a bitch and she deserves what’s happening. She knew he wasn’t over Elizabeth but she didn’t care. I can’t believe that she gave that information to Ric. I hope he doesn’t hurt Elizabeth before she gets back with Jason. I do enjoy Jason and Elizabeth’s friendship.

    According to arcoiris0502 on May 11, 2024
  • So many good and much needed conversations! Jason and Elizabeth are giving me all of the feelings with this one. Jason finally took the muzzle off with Courtney! It’s so good!

    According to Beth on May 11, 2024
  • Well, Courtney said she wanted to hear and she has and I hope she can never unhear it. Good for Jason for standing up for himself and tossing her to the curb. Now, let’s see if he can tame the rest of the clowns. Great update.

    According to nanci on May 11, 2024
  • I agree with Elizabeth Jason needs time to himself before jumping straight to Elizabeth. I love what Jason told Courtney. I hope Sonny and Carly won’t guilt Jason into staying with Courtney.

    According to Carla P on May 11, 2024
  • That was so worth the wait of an extra day! Loved the honesty and passion between Liason but truly enjoyed Jason’s honesty with Courtney even more. Once again, such an absolute pity GH didn’t know about you back in the day because this is so much better than what aired on our screens. So much. I hope you feel better. Stay safe in all the crazy weather.

    According to Living Liason on May 12, 2024
  • Finally, Jason is telling Courtney what he feels for Li and to her with how Courtney feels. I hope Jason tak4es Liz advice and leave to heal himself. Great update.

    According to Shelly Samuel on May 12, 2024
  • Damn, that was just awesome, every scene, every word!

    According to Shawna on May 13, 2024
  • “swoon” YES JASON!!!!

    I hope Court and Ric aren’t going to be an issue.

    According to Tammy on May 13, 2024
  • Yes! Jason can talk after all and what he said was so damn right.

    Loved the update

    According to Pamela Hedstrom on May 13, 2024