Rating: NC-17 overall
Pairing/Characters: Jack Johnson/Drew Doughty, Sidney Crosby
Dedication: herwhereabouts, abby20, robi0688, early_afternoon and joolzie, thanks for all your support, feedback and encouragement. :D
Disclaimer: It's all lies!
Author's Notes: This is a sequel to Tangled Up in Blue and One Last Summer, but it's not necessary to read those fics to follow this one. This is set just after the ending of Tangled Up in Blue (1/8/11) when Jack signed a long contract extension with the Kings. Who are these guys?
Blue Moon, Part 6
We had a day of practice, then it was time to start our ridiculous ten-game road trip. We would fly back home after the third game, and there was a five day break before flying east with the final game of the trip in Anaheim (which meant that we'd be back home), but it was still going to be brutal.
Drew always packed a lot faster than I did - mostly because if he forgot anything, he'd just borrow it from Brownie - so he came over to my room to annoy me and slow me down.
"So, how's it going?" he asked with a big grin as he flopped onto his back on my bed, just as I was about to lay some clothes on it to fold them.
"Get off," I commanded gruffly, glaring down at him.
"But I feel so comfortable," he said, lacing his fingers behind his head and stretching out with a contented sigh.
I rolled my eyes and dropped my clothes onto his chest with a satisfying thump.
"Why don't we ever sleep on your bed? It's so nice and soft." He closed his eyes blissfully.
"Because the mattress squeaks when we fuck." I folded the pair of jeans on top of the pile and put it into my suitcase.
"We could fuck on my bed then go sleep in yours," he suggested, opening his eyes to look at me.
"No," I answered, as I continued to fold my clothes.
"Why not?" Drew whined, grabbing a T-shirt off his chest and throwing it in my face. I frowned at him and lay it flat on his stomach, folded it over once and left it there.
"Because I don't want to get up after sex and walk over to another room to go to sleep. You can if you want." I sat on the edge of the bed next to him.
"But then I wouldn't see your pretty face when I wake up in the morning, sweetie," he said, and I punched him in the shoulder, jostling some of my clothes onto the floor.
Drew gave me a wounded look, rubbing his shoulder. "Ow! What? I say something nice and you hit me?"
"Sweetie? That was laying it on a little thick, don't you think?" I glared at him accusingly.
"What should I call you then? Honey Bun? Baby? Sugar muffin? Cutie pie-ugh!" My entire pile of clothes fell onto the floor as Drew rolled away to avoid the series of punches I was delivering to his shoulder.
"Why do you never let me pack in peace?" I growled, walking around the foot of the bed to get to my scattered clothes.
"Because you're such a cutie pie when you get annoyed," he answered, laughing as I tackled him. He struggled fiercely against me, but I still managed to punch him in the stomach, making him grunt. "You're so violent."
"Still think I'm a cutie pie?" I asked, cocking my arm back like I was about to punch him in the face.
"Yes," he said, then quickly sat up a bit to kiss me, wrapping his arms around me.
"Damn it," I grumbled as I kissed him back, opening my fist and reaching down to stroke his hair instead.
Drew smiled up at me as I shifted a little to get more comfortable. "Hey, on the second part of the road trip, do you want to take Greener up on his offer?"
"What offer?" I asked, kissing him lightly.
"You know, about trading rooms." Drew raised his eyebrows, like he was surprised I didn't remember.
"Oh God, that!" The memory of our excruciatingly awkward conversation with Greener and Brownie suddenly flooded back and I cringed reflexively.
The two of them had pulled us aside in the hotel lobby on our first road trip of the season to talk. Greener looked extremely pleased with himself, while Brownie had the expression of a crack dealer on the look out for the cops.
"So Brownie and I did some talking and we decided that if you guys ever want to trade so that you can be in the same room, we're cool with it," he said, then explained completely unnecessarily, "So that you can have sex."
Drew burst into hysterical laughter while I gaped at him in horror, and Brownie looked like he wanted to burst into tears. I couldn't say anything, so Drew thanked him for the offer and I walked away as quickly as I could.
Our longest road trips so far had only lasted around a week, and even though Drew had wanted to trade rooms a couple of times, I'd talked him out of it, saying that it made me uncomfortable that they would know we were having sex. Drew pointed out that they probably didn't think we just hugged and held hands occasionally, but it was something about them knowing exactly when and where it was happening that made it worse for me.
"We're going to be on the road for almost two weeks--two weeks! We'll just do it one night?" he implored.
"We've gone a month without sex, I think we can handle two weeks," I said, as we both sat up.
"That's different. I'm going to be around you all the time, but I won't be able to fuck you. It's like having a nicely grilled steak on a plate right in front of me and not being able to eat it." Drew frowned unhappily at me.
"Did you just compare me to a steak?" I asked, frowning back at him.
"Yeah. Maybe a filet mignon. Seared and rare on the inside, maybe wrapped in bacon." He licked his lips. "Hey, do you want to go get dinner?"
"Sure, after I finish packing," I said, looking with dismay at the clothes that were strewn all over the floor.
I woke up early the morning of our game in Edmonton. We'd flown in from Minnesota after playing the night before and I tried to go back to sleep, but it became obvious pretty quickly that it wasn't going to happen. I decided to go down to the hotel restaurant and get some coffee and give Sid a call while I was there. I hadn't talked to him since the All-Star break, when I'd called him from home. He had sounded worse than he had on my birthday, and I was getting worried about him.
"Hi Jack, you're up early," Sid said, sounding a little sleepy himself.
"Yeah, I just woke up and couldn't go back to sleep," I said. The waitress came by with a pot of coffee and filled my cup. Just the smell was enough to make me feel better.
"Nice moves last night in the shootout. Too bad you couldn't get it up," he said, snickering.
"I got it up just fine; Backstrom just made a great save that's all." It was good to hear him giving me shit; he sounded more like himself.
"It's okay, you don't have to explain yourself." Sid cleared his throat. "When are you going to be in Pittsburgh?"
"Uhh, sometime next week. I think we're flying in the day before the game." I started to feel uneasy about the prospect of seeing Sid. I missed him, of course, and I hadn't seen him in almost a year, but the last time I'd been with him, we'd slept together. It was what happened every time we saw each other. I loved Drew, but I didn't know if I could trust myself if I was alone with Sid.
"Oh. I'll make sure I'm back then," he said.
"Back? You're not in Pittsburgh right now?" I asked.
"I'm in Florida with my mom. I went home last week. Doctor thinks it might be better for me to just get away from the rink for awhile." He tried to sound casual, but I could hear the worry in his voice.
"So are you kicking back on the beach with a nice cold drink? I'm in Edmonton right now and it's so cold it hurt to breathe when I got off the bus," I said bitterly.
"I haven't been on the beach much, actually," he said quietly. "I get a headache if I'm out in the sun too long."
"Oh. That sucks." Hearing the fear in his voice killed me. He'd missed a lot of games three years before with a high ankle sprain, but he'd been positive and determined throughout his healing and rehab period. This seemed different.
"Do you want to get dinner the night before the game?" he asked, but I knew he wasn't really asking about dinner.
"You know I can't," I mumbled and immediately felt horrible about it. He was one of my best friends and I really wanted to see him, but my desire to keep my promise to Drew outweighed that; I had to keep myself out of dangerous situations, and being alone with Sid definitely counted as a dangerous situation.
"You can't? So you don't eat anymore," he sneered, and the tone of his voice was infuriating.
"Don't fucking pretend that all you mean is dinner," I snapped. I took a deep breath and tried to calm down, not wanting to fight with him.
"He wouldn't find out," Sid said quietly. "Nobody's ever found out."
"But I would know, and it would make a difference to me." I sighed. "I'd feel like I was lying whenever I was with him. He gets jealous even about stuff that happened in the past. I don't want to lose him."
He was quiet for a while, then he asked, "What about me?"
I sighed. "Come on, Sid, you know you'll always be one of my best friends."
"Yeah, we're such good friends that you don't even want to see me," he said bitterly.
"I want to see you. I don't want to--look, let's get dinner okay? Just dinner." I felt that unease again, but I didn't want to have to avoid Sid forever. I had to figure out how to fit our friendship into my new life.
"Fine," he said curtly, although he sounded a little relieved.
"Can I ask Scuds to come too?" I asked.
"Sure, I haven't talked to him in forever. Hey, I have to go, I'll see you next week, Jack," he said.
"Okay, see you then. Bye." I hung up and drank my coffee slowly, unsure if I'd done the right thing.
We played a good game that night. Drew and I got put back together on the power play - something we'd wanted for a while - and it paid off really well with Drew getting a couple of power play goals. I scored our third goal, so it was a really good night for the two of us. We won our next game in Calgary in a shootout, so our road trip was off to a great start.
Then we were back home for the four-day break between games. I tried not to think about our next game in Pittsburgh, but it was always there in the back of my mind, nagging at me. I thought a dozen times about calling Sid and canceling, but I always ended up talking myself out of it. It would be like running away, and I didn't believe in running away from anything.
I didn't spend a lot of time with Drew on the road trip, but that wasn't unusual. He would go out to group dinners with Simmer a lot while I would eat with the other Americans. We weren't intentionally avoiding each other; it was just what we'd always done on road trips before we got together.
When we were at home, though, we spent almost all of our time together, and it was just a matter of time before I started thinking about Pittsburgh while I was with him.
"Hey, what's wrong?" Drew stopped kissing me and put his hands on my chest, pushing me up off him a little.
"Nothing," I said, trying to sound convincing.
"You are such a bad liar," he said, shifting himself into a sitting position. "Come on, you can tell me."
But I can't, I thought. This is the one thing I can't tell you about.
I sat up as well, turning around to sit next to him. We both stuck our legs under the covers and he looked at me expectantly, waiting for me to say something.
"I have an old friend who's in trouble," I said, trying to choose my words carefully. "And I want to help him. But I don't want to get in trouble myself."
"What kind of trouble?" he asked, taking my hand in his and giving it a squeeze.
"I can't tell you," I said, looking straight ahead. "I want to do the right thing, and I'm afraid I'll go too far."
"Can I do anything to help?" He sounded genuine, and I felt like an asshole for lying to him, and for having any doubts at all about what I might do with Sid.
I shook my head. "I just need to figure it out myself. Thank you, though. I'm sorry I was distracted."
"You don't have to apologize," he said, smiling, and I kissed him gently, feeling even more torn than I had been before.