Can Kara achieve her dream? Can Richie help?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Chapter 62

By the end of the week Kara was ready to pull her hair out. She hadn’t talked to anyone other than by e-mail or IMs, her apartment was so clean she could eat off her bathroom floor if she so chose and she had watched more god-awful daytime television that any person in her right mind should subject herself to.

She wanted to talk dammit. She wanted to sing something, anything to shatter the silence that had been her companion all week. At this point she would have sung Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star to her neighbor’s cat if it she thought she could get away with it.

With a sigh she clicked off the television and wandered her apartment. She was drawn to the little room down the hall, the old piano called to her. She had polished it and the warm honey finish shone in the late afternoon sun. Sitting down she ran a scale before sliding into the song her mother had always played for her. There were no words, just a haunting melody that flowed around the room and settled on the man standing in the doorway.

She hadn’t heard him come in, didn’t know he was there as she moved from one melody into the next. He stood and waited, listening to her sadness flow out her fingertips and into the room.

He knew how hard it must be for her not to be able to speak or sing. He had watched Jon struggle with this more than 20 years ago. But this time, this time would be different. Richie wouldn’t let Kara do to herself what he’d seen Jon do and have done to him.

There was no Doc McGee involved this time and there would be no steroid injections, no half-assed attempts or quick fixes. He wasn’t going to stand by and watch her push herself the way Jon had if she wasn’t ready. A doctor or a specialist would be involved, even if he had to drag her there himself. He wasn’t going to let her waste her god-given talent on what ifs or what might be.

As the music faded away he dropped his bag to the floor and she turned at the soft thud. Too surprised to even think the “Richie” was blurted out faster than he could admonish her not to talk. And it hurt. He watched the pain cross her features as he crossed the small room to her. Crowding next to her on the piano bench he wrapped his arm around her. “I know that hurt, I could see it in your face. Please Princess, no talking, not yet.”

“But Rich” she started. He pressed his fingers over her mouth, “Come on, you know better.” Kara frowned and got up, heading back to the living room, to her pen and paper. Richie followed, stopping her when she picked up her pad. “Wait a minute Princess, I have something for you.”

He rummaged in his bag and handed her a pink notebook that sparkled with a tiara on the cover and a pen that was pink as well. Pink and sparkly? I’m a little old for that, aren’t I? She turned the paper so Richie could see. He smiled, “I hoped it would bring a smile to your face. It worked, didn’t it?” She shook her head and smiled as she nodded.

Turning back to her paper she began to write again. Thank you. But Rich, what are you doing here? Aren’t you supposed to be somewhere in the midwest or Canada?

Richie toyed with the ends of her hair that lay over her shoulder. “I told Jon I wanted to come see you and make sure you were really all right.” Kara rested her head against his shoulder before she penned her thoughts. You didn’t tell him what was going on did you? She frowned; she didn’t want anyone to know.

He saw her frown and sighed, “I had to Princess. I couldn’t just up and leave.” He turned her to face him, “besides, he’s been through what you’re dealing with right now. He knows what it is not to be able to talk or sing; what it is to be afraid you’ll never be able to again. He understands and” he reached into his shirt pocket and handed her a slip of paper, “he wants you to e-mail him if you have any questions or if you just want to talk.”

Kara looked at the paper in her hand. Jon had been through this? Maybe she’d e-mail him and get his opinion. Maybe it would help. She looked up at Richie and smiled, thank you she wrote on her paper before setting it all aside. She looked back at Richie, he had come to her, again, when she needed him. Crawling onto his lap she straddled him and took his face in her hands, “thank you” she whispered and before he could say anything her mouth was on his, kissing him gently.

Richie’s hands slid to her hips and held her close as her lips played over his. He hadn’t been looking for this when he decided to come see her. He had been worried about her, but right now, the worry was fading and the lust, the longing was taking over.

Sitting up a little straighter his fingers tangled into her mass of hair and tugged her head back, exposing the creamy line of her neck to his eager mouth. She sighed as his mouth skimmed over her and she nearly whispered his name but his lips were on hers before she could get the word out. Pulling back he tsked, “uh uh Princess. You don’t get to talk.” He stood, holding her in his arms “in fact” he said as he started toward her bedroom, “you don’t get to make any noise at all.”

Laying her on the bed Kara looked up at him with a frustrated glare. How did he expect her not to make any noise at all? He watched her, knowing what she was thinking. “You can do it Princess.” Joining her on the bed he pulled her sweatshirt up and off, groaning when he found her braless beneath. Dipping his head, his tongue drew a line from the hollow at the base of her throat to one rosy pink nipple. He looked up at her before he went any further, “you ready?”

Chapter 61

For a long time Kara sat staring at the screen of her laptop. She had been surfing, looking for any information that might be helpful when she noticed Richie was online. She wanted to tell him what was going on, but how could she? Hadn’t he been saying right along how he wanted to help her achieve her greatest dream? Would he be disappointed and change his mind, or would he understand what she was going through, how afraid she was? With a heavy sigh she signed on to Yahoo Messenger and gave him a nudge.

karad: hey you…

Richie had been going through his e-mail and frowned at the ping, then smiled when he saw it was Kara.

bluesguyatheart: hey yourself Princess
bluesguyatheart: how are you?

And there it was; the question she was terrified to answer.

karad: actually Rich, I’ve been better.

Richie sat up straighter on his bed, pulling the laptop onto his lap and adjusting his glasses.

bluesguyatheart: what’s wrong Princess?
bluesguyatheart: did you have a bad day at school/work?

Kara sighed, if only it was that simple.

karad: no, I didn’t work today.

Richie’s eyebrows raised in surprise. What is going on with her?

bluesguyatheart: are you sick?

Kara hesitated; she should just be straightforward and tell him. No more beating around the bush. Jen had been right, he needed to know.

karad: no, I’m not sick. Not really.
karad: it’s my throat. Doc says I’m not to talk for at least a week
karad: he gave me meds too.
karad: we’re hoping they do the trick.

Richie took all this in. He knew there had been something more serious going on with her throat when she was with him in Philadelphia. He only wished now he had been able to convince her to get to the doctor sooner. He picked up his phone, wanting to call her but looking back at his computer her words about not talking had him turning back to his keyboard.

bluesguyatheart: I’m sorry Princess. Do what the Doc says
bluesguyatheart: he knows best.

He watched the blinking cursor, waiting for her to answer back. He hated this, not being able to be there for her when she needed him. He wanted to take her in his arms, hold her and tell her everything would be all right.

When she didn’t answer he got antsy.

bluesguyatheart: Princess, talk to me.
bluesguyatheart: tell me what’s going on in that pretty head of yours

Kara wiped at her eyes.

karad: what if the Doc doesn’t know Rich.
karad: what if its something more serious?

Richie wanted to reassure her, but doing it across the wires of the internet felt so cold and impersonal.

bluesguyatheart: you can’t dwell on the ‘what ifs’ Princess.
bluesguyatheart: you just need to stay positive

After he hit send he picked up his phone. Even if she couldn’t talk, at least she could listen to him.

bluesguyatheart: Princess, I’m going to call you.

karad: but I’m not supposed to talk

bluesguyatheart: I know. I’ll do the talking, you just listen.

karad: okay, thanks.

He could practically see the sadness and fear in her words. He knew how scary this must be for her. He had watched Jon go through this, watched it nearly destroy what they had worked so hard for. He didn’t want that for Kara. He wanted her to have her dream and he was prepared to be there for her, no matter what happened.

Chapter 60

Sitting at a red light Kara decided she really didn’t want to go home. She stopped and got her prescription filled and went to the person she knew who could make her feel better about this whole situation.

She just hoped Jen was home.

Pulling into the driveway Kara heaved a sigh of relief. Her friend’s car was there and her daughters weren’t home from school yet. They could talk in relative peace. She checked her watch, for about an hour anyway.

When Jen pulled the door open she was surprised to see Kara standing on her front step.

“Kara? What are you doing here? Why aren’t you at school?”

Kara gave her friend a sad smile, “I need to talk to you” she whispered.

Jen ushered her in, “what’s wrong with your voice?”

Kara took off her coat, “that’s what I need to talk to you about.”

They sat at the kitchen table, the place where they always sat and talked about whatever was bothering either of them. The room, that table, held more than just dishes and dinner; it held hopes, dreams, fears and joys. Today, the fears were going to be added to.

Kara buried her head in her hands, “I’m so scared Jen.”

Jen reached over and gently pulled Kara’s hands away from her face, “tell me what’s going on.”

Kara told Jen all that had happened in the last few weeks, about being sick, her delay in going to the doctor, her trip to see Richie, her achingly sore throat, her last week at school and her latest trip to the doctor. “He gave me a prescription and told me not to talk any more than absolutely necessary.”

At that last statement Jen got up and went to her desk. She handed Kara a pen and a pad of paper, “don’t talk, write.”

ara huffed out a sigh and set pen to paper.
How am I supposed to do my job if I can’t talk or sing? She turned the pad so Jen could read it.

Jen laid her hand over Kara’s, “you’re not. You’re going to take the week and let the medicine do its job. It’s only a week Kara, it’s not forever.”

Kara turned the pad back, toying with the pen before writing again, what if it is.
What if the medicine doesn’t work? What if it is something more serious than just the swollen glands? Then what do I do? She paused before adding, how do I tell Richie?

“Just wait Kara” Jen held up her hands, “you can’t worry about what might happen. Worrying about what if never did anyone any good. Just take it a day at a time. I’m sure once the meds kick in you’ll be fine. Just focus on that for now. And as for Richie, you need to tell him what you just told me, only make sure you do it in an IM or a text. NO talking, remember?”

Kara nodded her head and wrote,
I know. And I know I should tell him, but he’s on tour, he doesn’t need to be worrying about me, he’s got enough on his plate right now without me adding to the burden.

Jen just shook her head at her hard-headed friend. “He loves you, right?”

Kara nodded her head and wrote,
yes, and?

Jen wanted to shake her friend, “he’ll want to be there for you Kar, that’s the kind of guy he is. He won’t want you to deal with this alone.”

Kara looked down at her paper, she knew Jen was right.
You’re right. I’ll tell him later. I’ll IM him when I get home.

When Maddie and Lizzie came charging through the door after school Kara spent a few minutes listening to their chatter before heading for home.

Jen watched her leave, wondering if Kara really was going to be okay, or if her dream was going to end up being just that, a dream. She hoped for her friend’s sake, that whatever this thing with her throat was that it wasn't serious and that her dream would indeed become a reality. She deserved that much at least.

Chapter 59

Glancing around Kara sighed. The doctor’s waiting room never changed. The plastic plant in the corner had leaves that were gray with dust and the low table held magazines that were ages old, their covers curled up at the corners. She didn’t dare close her eyes for fear the muzak would put her to sleep.

Kara had been out of work the last three days, barely able to talk, let alone sing. She had gotten through the weekend and had a voice on Monday for school but by Wednesday, she was breathy and hoarse again. How could she teach the kids to sing if she didn’t have a voice? So now, here she was, at the doctors, again.

She hated going to the doctor.

She sighed again. God, what was taking so long? She was the only one in the waiting room, had been for nearly half an hour and still she was waiting. Would they ever call her name? Kara dug in her purse for her phone. Maybe she’d text Jen to kill some time. Just as her fingers closed over her phone the door opened.

“Kara D’Angelo?” A woman not much older than herself wearing white pants, a floral print scrub top and a stethoscope waited; a clipboard in her hand.

She dropped her phone and stood. “It’s about time” she muttered under her breath as she followed the woman through the door.

The nurse weighed Kara before leading her into an exam room. Kara sat on the edge of the table, had her temperature and blood pressure taken before the nurse spoke again. “What brings you in today Ms. D’Angelo?”

Kara explained about her throat and about being sick just a couple weeks prior. The nurse nodded and made a few notations in Kara’s chart. “Okay, the doctor will be in shortly.”

All this waiting was making Kara edgy. She studied the poster on the wall, glanced at the brochures next to the sink, looked out the window at the dreary March day. She was reaching for a magazine from the rack on the wall when Dr. Reed finally walked in.

“Sorry to keep you waiting.”

Kara’s hand jerked back, “its okay.”

Dr. Reed sat on the wheeled stool and looked over at Kara. “So what seems to be the trouble today?”

As Kara talked Dr. Reed probed her neck, hmming and okaying. “Let’s check your throat” he said taking out his penlight and a tongue depressor. Kara opened her mouth and waited.

“I don’t see any signs of strep but I’m going to test for it anyway. You’re glands are swollen as well. It may be a virus so I’m going to prescribe an antibiotic. If this doesn’t clear things up we’ll have to run a few other tests.”

Kara sat quietly as he wrote out a prescription and opened the test swab. He turned back to her, “open up one more time.” He swabbed her throat quickly. “Okay, that’s it.” He handed her the prescription. “I want you to keep the talking to a minimum, can you do that?”

She shook her head, “I teach music at the elementary school. Not talking is not an option.”

Dr. Reed scribbled something else on another pad. “Here, I want you out of work for a least a week.

Kara looked at the slip, and then back at the doctor “a note to get out of school?”

He jotted something down on her chart, “just in case you need it.” He headed to the door, “I want to see you again when you’re done with that prescription. The nurse will call you tomorrow with the results of your strep test.” He reached for the door knob and turned back to Kara, “remember Kara, no talking unless absolutely necessary.”

Kara sighed and nodded, “okay Dr. Reed. Thanks.”

Back in her car Kara dug in her purse for her phone. As she dialed Dr. Reeds words echoed in her head
keep the talking to a minimum. She closed her phone. She’d have to wait to talk to Richie.

Chapter 58

Sitting in her classroom at the end of the week, Kara glanced out the window. The ugly March day matched her mood. The sky was gray with thick clouds and the air was damp with a late winter mist that would leave even the hardiest soul with a chill. Kara shivered just thinking about the walk to her car. Gathering her things she bundled herself up and headed for home.

Once tucked in at home she stroked her throat as she sipped her tea. She had hoped by now her throat would be better, but she really couldn’t ignore it any longer. There was obviously something more wrong than she wanted to believe. She could barely talk today and every time she swallowed it felt like trying to swallow a golf ball. She would have to call the doctor. With a sigh she set her mug aside and looked at the clock. That call would have to wait until Monday though.

Grabbing her laptop she booted it up, intending to do a bit of research on her sore throat when she noticed that Richie was on line. She smiled as she typed out a quick hello.

karad: Hey you…

As she was typing the words sore throat in the WebMD search bar she got pinged back.

bluesguyatheart: Hey yourself Princess.
bluesguyatheart: how are you?

karad: I’m okay I guess. I miss you.
karad: how’s Connecticut?

Richie studied his computer screen. He knew Kara hadn’t been exactly one hundred percent when she came to Philadelphia. He wondered if it was still her throat that was bothering her. Every time they spoke on the phone she had sounded like she was losing her voice.

bluesguyatheart: I miss you too Princess.
bluesguyatheart: is your throat still giving you trouble?

karad: yeah
karad: I was just doing a little research to see what I could do about it.

bluesguyatheart: why not just go to the doctor

karad: can’t call until Monday

Kara settled further into her chair. She wanted to change the subject; she was tired of talking about her health.

karad: how are the shows going?
karad: still want me to come out next month?

bluesguyatheart: the shows are great.
bluesguyatheart: they make up for all the other shit we have to do on tour.
bluesguyatheart: honestly…
bluesguyatheart: I want you here all the time Princess

karad: I’d be there with you if I could babe
karad: Easter break will be here before we know it.

bluesguyatheart: I know.
bluesguyatheart: It doesn’t make the wait any easier.

karad: I know.
karad: why aren’t you with the guys?

Richie glanced at his watch; he was supposed to meet them for dinner soon.

bluesguyatheart: actually we’re going to dinner in a bit.

karad: I’m going to make myself something and watch a movie
karad: how exciting is my life? LOL

bluesguyatheart: I’d take a quiet night in with you anytime Princess.

Richie had no sooner hit enter when the pounding on his door started. “Come on man, let’s go!” He shook his head, Kara’s night in was sounding better and better to him.

bluesguyatheart: brb

Opening the door he was surprised to see only Jon standing there. Standing back he let him in, “just give me a minute would ya?” Jon wandered over to the table and looked at the computer, hesitating briefly before hunting and pecking at the keys.

“Hey, what do you think you’re doing?” Jon ignored him and hit send.

bluesguyatheart: hey Miss D’Angelo, how’s it going?

Kara stared at her screen who is that?

karad: I’m fine, who is this?

Jon scrolled back a few posts to see what they had been chatting about.

bluesguyatheart: what movie are you going to watch Princess?

Now Kara was totally confused. She was sure it wasn’t Rich, but with the princess stuck in there she couldn’t be sure. Picking up her phone she sent a text off to Richie.

[7:15 pm] who’s on your computer?

karad: Failure to Launch, have you seen it?

bluesguyatheart: no, not really my kind of movie.

Richie smirked when he felt his phone buzz in his pocket. He quickly sent off a response to her.

[7:16 pm] Jon

Kara shook her head in amusement as she typed.

karad: hey Jon, you going to drag Rich off to dinner now?

Jon laughed as he typed.

bluesguyatheart: what gave me away, the Miss D’Angelo?
bluesguyatheart: yeah, the guys are waiting on us downstairs.

karad: only you and my students call me Miss D’Angelo
karad: put Rich back on for a sec?
karad: enjoy your dinner.

Jon stepped away from the computer “she wants to talk to you man” he told Richie as he moved past him.

Richie elbowed him as he went by, “of course she does you ass. I’ll meet you downstairs.”

He waited for Jon to leave before turning back to his computer.

bluesguyatheart: sorry about that Princess.
bluesguyatheart: I should go though. The guys are waiting on me.

karad: it’s okay
karad: go eat. Have a good time.

bluesguyatheart: I’ll call you later.
bluesguyatheart: I love you princess.

Kara smiled at her screen.

karad: I love you too.
karad: talk to you soon.

Kara closed her computer, setting it on the floor beside her. She rested her head against the back of the chair thinking about Richie and his promise of a phone call later. She only hoped he waited until he was alone, she didn’t want to end up talking to Jon again

Chapter 57

When they left for the venue, Kara wasn't sure what to expect, it had been a long time since she had been to a concert. It was like nothing she had ever witnessed before. Jon had more energy than her class of third graders; he never stood still. She watched in awe as he commanded the audience to do whatever he bid. She could only hope to be half that good.

Switching her attention to the man on Jon's right she was completely enraptured. The way he played his guitar so effortlessly, the way he moved and when he used the talkbox, she couldn't tear her eyes away. She shifted restlessly; she knew just how talented that mouth was. He winked at her and all she could do was stare.

When the Soulmates and some of the players made their appearance with a birthday cake for Jon, Kara had to laugh at Jon's reaction, wondering 'who the fuck was on his stage'. She raised her voice with the rest of the crowd as Richie led them in singing happy birthday to Jon, twice. She was exhausted just watching and trying to take it all in.

After the last note of the last song had faded, after the last bow had been taken, after the last scream had died away, Kara barely had time to catch her breath before she was swept up against a hot sweaty body and hustled along the hallway and through one of several closed doors. Richie didn't release her until the door had been kicked shut behind him.

"So Princess, what did you think of your first show?" He had been antsy all night, wondering how she would react never having been to a show before. Kara didn't answer right away, trying to gather her thoughts, trying to figure out how to tell him what she was feeling. She watched as Richie moved around the room, gathering his things, undressing, tossing his sweaty stage clothes in a pile, readying to take a shower. Wrapped in a towel he paused with his hand on the doorknob, waiting for something, any kind of reaction from her.

Kara crossed the room to him, wrapping her arms around him, resting her cheek against his hard, sweaty back, "I'm not sure how to describe what I'm feeling, what I saw. It was all so much more than I ever could have imagined. You were incredible, the whole night was amazing."

Richie turned, wrapping his arms around her "I'm glad you enjoyed your first time Princess."

She grinned as she leaned up to press a kiss to his lips, "I can tell you my favorite part though."

His eyebrow rose as he wondered just what she had found to be her favorite thing "do tell."

She smiled slightly and her cheeks pinked, "the talkbox. I loved when you used the talkbox."

Richie smiled at her before pressing a kiss on her forehead, "the talkbox, really? Why's that?"

She squirmed slightly, "you have an amazing mouth and, knowing what you are capable of with that mouth, you had me turned on all night." Before Richie could say anything, Kara leaned up and pressed her lips to his, letting the flood of emotions swirling inside her dictate her actions.

Grabbing her and holding her to him, Richie kissed her back, their mouths eating at each other, their tongues waging a war with each other. He had wanted her experience to be good, but hadn't considered her reaction being like this. He liked it.

Kara reached between them and with a tug, his towel fell to the floor. She pulled her mouth from his and dropped to her knees, kissing her way down, trailing her tongue through the barely there smattering of hair at his navel and lower, through the dark nest of hair that was the backdrop for his more than impressive cock, dragging her tongue up the length of him, taking him fully in her mouth.

Richie watched as she slid down the front of him and nearly cried out as he felt her warm mouth surround him. He had to close his eyes when he felt her tongue swirl around his head and when she took him deep and he felt the back of her throat he dropped his head back. "Fuck Princess." She smiled around him, humming lightly as she slid him in and out of her mouth.

Sliding her hands up his thighs she cupped him lightly with one hand and wrapped her other hand around him, moving it in tandem with her mouth. Richie braced a hand on the wall and the other he wrapped in her hair, groaning his enjoyment with each stroke of tongue and fingers. His hips pumped as she drew him closer to the blessed relief that was hovering.

When she took him deep, when she nearly swallowed all of him, he couldn’t hold back anymore. With a long, low groan, he exploded in her mouth, his hips twitching and pumping with his release. Releasing his grip from her hair he drew her up from the floor, kissing her, tasting himself on her lips. “I’m not the only one with an amazing mouth Princess.”

Her cheeks pinked and she averted her gaze, only to feel Richie’s fingers urging it back to him. “Don’t be embarrassed Princess, I love that you were able to let go and let your emotions lead you. As a matter of fact,” he swung her up into his arms and headed for the bathroom, “I intend on taking my turn next.”

Chapter 56

Covering his hand with hers, Kara was surprised to feel his hand tremble under hers. His fingers tightened on the slim ribbon holding the blue silk closed. She dragged her gaze up the front of him; the expanse of skin gave way to a light smattering of hair that did nothing to hide the sharp nail heads his nipples had become. She could almost see his heart beating as her eyes traveled further, past the adam’s apple that was working up and down, past the lips where his tongue snaked out to wet them, to his beautiful brown eyes that were near black with want.

Their gazes held as their fingers tugged on the tie of her top. It came free and the material slid across her skin, grazing her nipples lightly before resting limply at her sides. Richie’s hands moved over her, his fingertips ghosting over her skin from hip to shoulder, raising goose bumps across her flesh. Dropping to his knees in front of her, his tongue snuck out to tease her piercing as his fingers hooked into the sides of the tiny g-string that she wore; he wondered why she even bothered.

While his hands slid the scrap of blue down her legs, his mouth nipped a trail from her piercing to the top of her mound, avoiding where he knew she wanted him, following the path her panties made down her leg. Kara moaned and reached behind her, grasping the door jamb for support. He tasted his way back up her legs, kissing an ankle, stroking the back of a knee with his tongue, caressing the inside of a thigh. He wanted her to tremble for him, wanted her to vibrate with the need like he was.

Rising from his knees he dragged his tongue up the front of her, caressing the under curve of her breast, circling and suckling one hardened nipple and then the other before making his way back to her mouth. When their lips met Kara pressed herself against him and he pulled her back to the bed, turning to lay her across it. Crawling up over her, Richie stroked his fingers over her, caressing from hip to breast.

Kara bit her bottom lip, she could feel herself trembling under his touch. She couldn’t remember ever wanting anyone the way she wanted Richie. He made her feel so much and just when she didn’t think she could bear it, he urged her on, taking her where no one else ever had. He touched something inside her she had never known was there.

Lifting her head up Kara looked down and watched as Richie moved over her, watched his hands as they played over her. She thought she might have an orgasm just from his fingers sliding over her skin alone.

Richie looked up and caught her eye as she was watching him. The small, intimate smile was all the warning he gave her before lowering his head and letting his tongue slide down and taste the sweetness that was waiting for him. Kara’s head dropped back to the bed and she cried out as her orgasm rushed through her.

After he pushed her a second time Richie sat up, sat back on his heels and looked at Kara. Her eyes were closed and he could see a tear sliding down across her temple and into her hair. “Princess?”

She opened her eyes and found his, “please Rich, I need you baby.”

He couldn’t deny her. Rising from the bed he dropped his pants to the floor and slid back up over her. She reached for him and he stopped her, “if you do that now Princess, we’ll be all done.” She grasped his arms instead, waiting for the sweet relief only he could give her.

Teasing her a bit more he stroked the broad wet head of his erection across her clit. She reared up, gripping his shoulders, her nails digging in, “God Rich, please” she begged. Lowering to his elbows he dipped his head and found her mouth with his as he moved his hips, easing his way inside her, filling her slowly, filling her completely. Groping for her hands, he laced their fingers together as he gently rocked his hips. He pressed tender kisses along her jaw and down her neck, keeping the tempo slow and easy.

He brought his mouth back to hers, their kisses long and slow, matching each thrust of his hips. When Kara could pull her mouth away she begged him for more, “harder Rich, faster, please.”

Letting her hands go he pushed up on his, levering himself over her, “you sure Princess?” She pressed her hips to his in answer.

Grunting with the effort, he did as she asked; he drove into her, grinding against her with every down stroke, pushing her to scream as the first wave rolled through her. When he felt her start to tighten around him a second time, he hitched her leg higher on his hip, pressed deeper into her, letting himself go as she bore down on him, crying out with her as they found their release together.

Chapter 55

Looking around Kara couldn’t help but smile; Jen would kill to be where she was right now. Kara shook her head at the thought. Getting her phone from her purse she snapped a couple of pictures and sent them to her friend.

[3:05 pm]
*wish you were here? LOL*

She chuckled as she hit send. Glancing around again her eyes landed on Richie. He was sitting with Jon and David and they were talking. Jon looked a little tense, but it was his team out there on the field after all. She supposed he was allowed to be tense. Richie caught her eye and winked at her. She smiled at him and went to get something to drink.

Taking a seat next to Richie she sipped from the bottle of water, trying not to wince as she swallowed. Her throat was killing her. Never should have sung that damn song last night.

When the Soul scored and she cheered along with the rest of the crowd Richie saw her grimace. He left her side, returning with a bottle that he handed to her. “Here Princess, drink this.”

She looked at the bottle and then up at him, “I’m not thirsty Rich, but thank you.”

He sat down next to her, “I saw your face when you were cheering. You’re throat hurts, doesn’t it?”

Watching the action on the field she nodded and sighed, “it does.”

He urged her to take the bottle of iced tea, “it’s got lemon in it. It should help, better than the water at least.”

She relented and took the bottle, “thanks.”

After the game Richie and Kara begged off from going to dinner with everyone; the next day was going to be hectic and then Monday Kara was going home and he was off to Pittsburgh, the next stop on the tour. He wanted tonight just for them.

Closing the door to their room Richie turned to find Kara had slipped off her coat and was standing by the window. Moving up behind her he wrapped his arms around her, “everything okay?” He buried his nose in her hair, inhaling the musky floral scent that he would forever associate with her.

She turned her head to look at him over her shoulder, “are you sure you didn’t want to go out with everyone else tonight?”

Turning her to look at him he brushed her hair back over her shoulders, “we spent last night with them and we’ll be with them most of tomorrow. TonightI want just for us, okay?”

She smiled and nodded, “I like the sound of that.” She ran her hands up his arms, resting them on his shoulders “so, any idea of what you want to do?”

He smiled slightly before lowering his mouth to hover just above hers, “I’m sure I can think of something.”

She closed her eyes, “I’m sure you will” she murmured just before his lips claimed hers.

Richie’s hands slid down and cupped her butt, pulling her flush against him as he backed toward the bed. Sitting on the edge of the bed he nipped his way from Kara’s mouth to her jaw, “Princess?”

She sighed as he found a sensitive spot near her ear, “yeah?”

He curled his tongue around the lobe of her ear, “I wanna see what you bought for the weekend.”

She pulled back from him, her eyes wide open, “what?”

He smirked, “you were going to give me a fashion show last night, remember?”

She nodded, “I remember, but you want it now?”

He nodded, “absolutely.”

A secret smile slid across her lips as she thought about what she had bought. She pushed him back on the bed, “make yourself comfortable. I’ll be right back.”

When Kara opened the bathroom door she found Richie stretched out on the bed, barefoot with his shirt open and eyes closed. She leaned against the jamb and struck a pose with one hand over her head and one down along the molding. “Rich?” He turned his head toward the sound of her voice and opened his eyes.

He let his gaze peruse her from head to foot. The satin slip he guessed you’d call it was the palest pink and hugged her like a second skin. Her breasts were pushed up to almost spilling over the cups and it stopped just below her ass. His mouth watered, his pants tented. She looked amazing.

Kara watched him look at her. He looked like he wanted to eat her alive. “You like?”

He nodded his head “oh yeah” before motioning for her to turn around. She did a slow spin, the back of the slip dipped slightly and hugged the curve of her butt. When she met Richie’s eyes again the hunger there caused her to swallow hard. He started to move but she stopped him, “I’ve got one more.” She disappeared into the bathroom once again.

He kept his eyes trained on the door, willing it to open. He couldn’t imagine what else she might have found. He didn’t have to wait long to find out. The door opened again and he nearly bolted off the bed. The midnight blue baby-doll top had a single tie holding it together between her breasts and left nearly all of her smooth abs bared and he could see her navel ring winking at him.

“Rich?” He hadn’t spoken a word since she opened the door.

He came off the bed and ran his finger down between her breasts and toyed with the tie. “You’d better take this off Princess; I don’t want to ruin it.”

Chapter 54

While they were sitting at the table eating the light dinner Richie had ordered, a pounding on the door made them both jump. Kara looked up, “you expecting someone else?”

Richie shook his head, knowing full well who was on the other side of the door.

“Open up man, we know you’re in there.”

Richie didn’t move, trying to finish his dinner while ignoring the ruckus outside his room.

Kara looked over at him again, “are you going to get that?”

Richie put the last bite of his sandwich in his mouth, “I know who it is and I was hoping if I ignored them they would go away.”

As Richie stood another voice came through the door, “come on man, open the door already. You can ‘study’ later.”

Kara recognized the voice as belonging to Jon and hung her head and laughed. “You have nice friends Rich.”

He rolled his eyes at her and yanked the door open, “go away already!” The three men standing on the other side of the door ignored him and shouldered their way into the room, David stopping to pick something up from the floor on his way.

Kara stood and stepped near Richie when the three men entered the room. She felt a little exposed wearing only Richie’s shirt. Her hand went to her chest, holding the shirt closed as best she could. Scanning the faces in front of her she brought her gaze to rest on the only familiar one. “Hi Jon. Nice to see you again.”

He smiled and leaned in to kiss her cheek, “nice to see you too Kara.”

She looked at the other two men, trying to remember their names. The blonde curly-haired one was holding her dress. She turned to him and snagged it from his fingers. “I believe that’s mine. Thank you.”

David laughed, “well I hope its not Sambora’s.” He paused and looked over at Richie “unless there’s something you haven’t told us in the last 25 years?”

Richie punched him in the arm, “fuck off man.”

David turned his attention back to Kara, taking her free hand, “I’m David and you are?”

She looked him up and down, “not impressed.”

Jon and Tico laughed uproariously at her comment while David put on a great show of being insulted. “You wound me Kara. We’ve barely met and already you’re insulting me.”

Kara laughed, “just getting my shots in when I can. It’s nice to meet you David.”

Richie sidled up to Kara and put his arm around her, “nice one princess.”

He turned her toward Tico, leaving David reeling from the sharp retort. “This is Tico.”

Tico took her hand, kissing the back of it, “nice to meet you baby.”

She gave his hand a squeeze, “it’s nice to meet you too Tico.”

Richie pulled Kara to stand in front of him and wrapped his arms around her, “what do you all want?”

“We’re going downstairs to the bar and we came to see if you guys wanted to join us.” David replied as he tried to keep his eyes off of Kara’s bare legs.

Richie looked down at Kara, “you wanna join these losers?”

Kara shrugged, “can I put some pants on first?”

A resounding “NO” came at her from three different directions.

She laughed and Richie herded his friends to the door, “we’ll meet you down there. Get out!”

He shut the door behind his friends and turned to find that Kara had disappeared. “Princess, where’d you go?”

She called out from the other room, “in here.”

Going into the bedroom Richie found her pulling on a pair of jeans. Taking a few steps to close the gap between them, he slid his hands inside her open shirt and pulled her close, “I have to agree with the guys, you really didn’t need to put pants on.”

She laughed as she pressed a kiss to his throat, “this is a respectable hotel, I don’t want to get thrown out.”

Richie chuckled and tilted her head up for a kiss, “with those legs, highly doubtful princess.”

When they got to the bar they found the guys at a table in the back corner trying to be inconspicuous. There were a few people milling about, but it was quiet for a Friday night. Kara dug into her purse for some money and excused herself to walk over to the jukebox. Rifling through the songs she made her selection and sat back down next to Richie. “Find something good?”

She sipped on her drink, smirked and nodded, “oh yeah.”

He raised an eyebrow at her, leaning in to whisper in her ear, “what did you do princess?”

When the strains of Pink’s
U + Ur Hand started she smiled and hummed the first few lines.

Uh uh uh uh uh uh uh oh
Uh uh uh uh uh uh uh oh

When she started singing along, four pairs of eyes turned and stared. Richie couldn’t believe she picked this song and was singing along.

Check it out
Going out
On the late night
Looking tight
Feeling nice
It's a cock fight
I can tell
I just know
That it's going down
At the door we don't wait cause we know them
At the bar six shots just beginning
That's when dickhead put his hands on me
But you see

Kara looked around the table and her gaze landed on David as she started the chorus. He didn’t know what to think. And who knew she could sing like that?

I'm not here for your entertainment
You don't really want to mess with me tonight
Just stop and take a second
I was fine before you walked into my life
Cause you know it's over
Before it began
Keep your drink just give me the money
It's just you and your hand tonight

Uh uh uh uh uh uh uh oh
Uh uh uh uh uh uh uh oh

She pinned her eyes on David, infusing a bit of attitude as she sang the next part.

I'm drunk
I don't give a fuck
Wanna dance
By myself
Guess you're outta luck
Don't touch
Back up
I'm not the one
Listen up it's just not happening
You can say what you want to your boyfriends
Just let me have my fun tonight

I'm not here for your entertainment
You don't really want to mess with me tonight
Just stop and take a second
I was fine before you walked into my life
Cause you know it's over
Before it began
Keep your drink just give me the money
It's just you and your hand tonight

Uh uh uh uh uh uh uh oh
Break break
Break, Break, Break it down

Stopping to take a sip of her drink Richie leaned over, “you’re too much princess.” She smiled and picked up again when the song did, gesturing to all the guys as she sang.

In the corner with your boys you bet them five bucks
You’d get the girl that just walked in but she thinks you suck
We didn't get all dressed up just for you to see
So quit spilling your drinks on me yeah

You know who you are
High fivin, talkin shit, but you're going home alone aren’t cha?

Cause I'm not here for your entertainment
You don't really want to mess with me tonight
Just stop and take a second
Just stop and take a second
I was fine before you walked into my life
Cause you know it's over
Know it's over
Before it began
Keep your drink just give me the money
It's just you and your hand tonight
It's just you and your hand

I'm not here for your entertainment
No no no
You don't really want to mess with me tonight
Just stop and take a second
Just take a second
I was fine before you walked into my life
Cause you know it's over
Before it began
Keep your drink just give me the money
It's just you and your hand tonight
Yeah oh

“Well, well, well” Jon said as Kara finished, “Ms. D’Angelo has a little attitude.”

Kara turned to face him, “just because I teach elementary school doesn’t mean I don’t know the grown up songs too, Jon.”

He held his hands up in defense, “hey, I’m just surprised that you chose that of all songs.”

She patted his knee, “what’s the matter, hit a little close to home for ya tonight?”

He laughed and looked around the table, gesturing to David and Tico “maybe for them, but my wife will be here in the morning. I’m sure I can wait until she gets here.”

Chapter 53

Richie pulled Kara to him, his mouth unrelenting on hers. Their tongues wrapped around each other, tasting and teasing. Richie's hands searched Kara's back for the zipper of her dress, "no zipper" he mumbled against her lips.

Kara nibbled along his jaw, "tie at the waist." His fingers fumbled with the knot for the slightest moment before the dress fell open and he pushed it off her shoulders.

He pulled his mouth from hers as the dress slipped away. "God baby you look so good." He fingered the lacy edge of her bra and up the strap, his fingers drawing light circles on her shoulder. "Is this new?"

She nodded as her hands wandered up the front of his shirt, unbuttoning it as she went. "I did some shopping this week." She had bought the dusky violet lace bra and g-string knowing that purple was his favorite color.

Richie lowered his head, nibbling at her shoulder as he pushed at the strap, "what else did you get?"

Kara's chuckle got lost as his nimble fingers found her hardened nipple through the lace of the bra. "I'll show you later." She dragged his mouth back to hers. He walked them toward the bed, pulling his shirt off as they went.

Depositing her on the bed he moved to her feet. Slowly he worked the zipper of her boots, dropping each one to floor before slowing caressing her legs from ankle to thigh, rolling her stockings down and tossing them somewhere behind him. When he stepped back, Kara propped herself up on her elbows to watch him. As he reached for his belt she sat up and stopped him. "Let me." His belt clanged to the floor and she stroked him through his pants before releasing the button and zipper. Pushing the jeans down over his hips she had him in her mouth before they hit the floor.

Richie closed his eyes and his muscles tensed as he fought the urge to let go and just fuck her mouth. When she took him deep and he felt the back of her throat he had to stop her. "Kara, baby, stop." She slid her mouth slowly up the length of him, her tongue swirled around the head and his eyes slammed shut against the need to just let go in her mouth. He pushed her back slightly, letting her fall back on the bed. Crawling up with her he reached for her panties, tugging them down and off.

He lay next to her, his hands skimming over her, her skin like silk under his calloused fingertips. As his fingers reacquainted themselves with her body, his lips caressed her jaw, nuzzled her neck, nipped at the hollow between her neck and shoulder, relearning the flavor that was Kara. When he slipped two fingers easily into her heated flesh Kara groaned and her hips arched from the bed. He pumped his fingers in and out and when his thumb brushed across her clit, her release rushed through her leaving her trembling.

Richie moved over her, slipping into her, burying himself to the hilt in one measured thrust. He closed his eyes against the exquisite heat and tightness of her, his control perilously close to slipping. When she moved under him, he couldn’t fight the need any longer. He pounded into her, hoping she was as close as he was. Kara wrapped her legs around him, pulling him closer, driving him deeper. He thrust one final time, pouring himself into her, her muscles draining him of all he had to give.

For several long moments the only sound in the room was the heaving of their breaths. “Rich?”

He turned his head, “hmmm?”

Kara tried to move, “can you pull the blankets up?”

He reached down and tugged the blankets up. “Better?”

She curled into him, nodding her head against his sweaty chest, “yeah.” Wrapping his arm around her, his hand idly stroked her up and down.

Frowning, he moved so he could see her. “Princess?”

With her eyes closed she didn’t see his frown. “Hmmm, what is it Rich?”

"You've lost weight."

She nodded, "I don’t really eat when I’m sick."

Richie’s protective instinct kicked in and he sat up, “well maybe we should get you some food. You need to eat, what do you want?”

Kara sat up next to him, laying a hand on his chest, “Rich, stop. If you want to get dinner, that’s fine. But the few pounds I lost aren’t a big deal. Don’t worry, they’ll come back. Unfortunately.” She coughed, “I wish this would go away though. The sore throat could go too for that matter.”

Richie cupped her chin and tilted her face up so he could see her, “princess, I like your curves so I hope the ‘few pounds’ do come back and your cough and sore throat will go away.” He pressed a soft kiss to her lips, “now, what do you want to eat and can we have that fashion show later?”

Chapter 52

Kara had never been so anxious for school to be over, and apparently she wasn’t the only one. Jake could barely stand still and when Kara wasn’t checking the clock, he was. It was Friday and she was leaving right after school for Philadelphia, for Richie.

When class was over she pulled Jake aside as the other children filed out of the room, “Jake, I know its Friday, but you were awfully fidgety today. What’s going on?”

His smile was so bright Kara couldn’t help but smile with him, “Ms. D’Angelo, we’re going to see Dad this weekend. It’s almost his birthday!”

Kara laughed, “I guess I should have known it was something like that.” She herded him toward the door, “don’t miss your bus and have a good time this weekend.”

He nearly danced out the door, “I will Ms. D’Angelo. See ya!” She shook her head and laughed as he zipped down the hall and around the corner. She was nearly ready to do the same.

Smoothing a hand down the front of her dress she reached for her coat. She smiled to herself hoping Richie liked it. She had bought it with him in mind. It was a chocolate brown cashmere wrap dress. One slip of the tie and the dress would reveal one of her other special purchases. She slipped her coat on, grabbed her purse and headed out to her car.

Three hours later she pulled into the hotel parking lot. Everyone and their brother must have been going to Philadelphia today, traffic had been just awful. Stepping out of the car she got her bag from the trunk and looked up.
Wonder which floor he’s on.

When she approached the desk Kara realized she had no idea how to go about finding out what room he was in. She didn’t know if asking for him by name would get her anywhere but what else could she do? The clerk behind the counter hung up from the call she was on, “hi, welcome to the Four Seasons, how can I help you?”

Kara glanced at the girl’s name tag, “Chrissy, my name’s Kara D’Angelo and I’m here to see…”

Chrissy stopped her, “I know who you’re here to see. He left your name with us. He’s in room 416.”

Kara smiled in relief as Chrissy handed her a key, “thank you.” Chrissy smiled; “enjoy your stay.”

Kara headed to the elevator, “I intend to” muttered softly as the doors slid open.

Richie was waiting impatiently for Kara to arrive. He glanced at the clock; she should have been here an hour ago. Pacing the room again he paused by his laptop and hit play. He could at least listen to her while he was waiting.

The holy voices speaking, words I can't recall.
And I do still believe if I still believe in anything at all.
All you hear in me and all you hear.
I thought I saw you walking down by a street yesterday.
I thought I heard your voice though I could not hear just what you say.
And I am waiting .
and I am waiting.
And I'm waiting here for you. I'm whispering your name.
I am telling to the wind.
Your love has brought me here.
Until I see you again.

I am opening the door.
I will let this moment in.
Your love will find me here. Until I see you again.

And I still can remember as I write down these words.
The music in your voice and the silence of the universe.
And I am singing.
And now I'm singing here for you.

Richie sat on the couch and rested his head against the back. With his eyes closed he listened to Kara’s beautiful voice singing to him. Lost in her voice, he thought he imagined the knock on the door when it came.

I'm whispering your name.
I am telling to the wind.
Your love has brought me here.
Until I see you again.
I am opening the door.
I will let this moment in.
Your love will find me here.
Until I see you again.

When the knock came again he realized he wasn’t imagining things. He quickly crossed the room and opened the door, gazing at her long enough to gauge who was standing there before he dragged her into the room and his mouth came crashing down on hers.

When Kara could find the strength to pull her mouth from Richie’s she gasped for breath, “I’m guessing you’re glad to see me?”

Richie smiled wryly at her, “you have no idea princess.” He went back for a second taste before letting her go. “Where have you been? You’re late.”

Kara stepped around him and surveyed the room while she unbuttoned her coat. “Traffic was unbearable. I thought I’d never get here.” She turned and smiled at him as she slipped off her coat, “must be something going on here in town this weekend. Any ideas what it might be?”

Richie threw his head back and laughed, “I think I have a pretty good idea. Now,” he stalked across the room to her, “come here, I’ve missed you baby.”

Chapter 51

Kara went and put the water on for her tea and came back, Richie still hadn’t moved. She shook him gently. “Rich.”

He stirred and opened his eyes, “hey princess.”

Kara turned and coughed. “What are you doing here?”

He sat up and pulled her down to his lap, rubbing her back as she coughed. “I came to make sure you were all right.”

She reached for the tissues, “you shouldn’t have come here Rich. What’s going to happen if you get sick?”

He toyed with the end of her ponytail, “don’t worry about me princess.”

The tea kettle whistled and Kara tried to move but Richie held her tight “stop right there.”

She looked at him, “I’m just going to fix myself some tea.”

Richie stood with her in his arms and set her down, “I’ll get it for you.” Kara curled up on the couch; the spot still warm with Richie’s heat. She pulled the blanket up over her and tried to catch his scent, but she was too congested.

Richie came back carrying a tray laden with a mug of tea, a glass of orange juice, cold pills, aspirin and a bottle of water. He looked down and Kara had her eyes closed. He set the tray on the table and caressed her forehead; it felt warm. Kara’s eyes fluttered open at his light touch, her gaze flitted between his face and the tray, “what’d you bring me?”

Smiling, he indicated to the tray, “what’s your poison princess, tea, juice or water?”

She pointed to the mug, “tea please.”

He set the mug of tea on the table next to her and then handed her two aspirins and the glass of juice. “Take these then you can drink your tea.” When she leaned over to put the glass on the tray he heard her breathing. “You’re wheezing Kara. You really should go to the doctor. This cold could be turning into something worse than just a cold.”

She waved him off, “stop with the doctor already, please? I’ll be fine.”

Kara hated going to the doctor. She just needed to rest and she would be fine; at least that what she kept telling herself. She sipped her tea while she and Richie watched a movie, dozing off while Richie held her close.

Richie looked down when she started to move around. He could feel the heat emanating from her. Her fever had come back and she was sweating, trying to kick the blanket off. He shook her, “baby, wake up.”

Trying to take a breath she turned slightly panicky eyes toward him, “I’m hot Rich and I can’t breathe.”

He sat her up, “okay Kara, that’s it. If you won’t call the doctor, I will.”

She was still fighting for a deep breath, “okay, get me the phone please.”


Two hours later they were back on the couch. Richie had helped her into clean pajamas and had given her the first dose of her prescription. Holding his hand, Kara couldn’t bring herself to look at him. “I should have listened to you the other day Rich. I’m sorry.” She had a sinus infection and bronchitis. The doctor had thought it was pneumonia, but the chest x-ray had ruled that out.

With his fingers under her chin he tugged her face toward him, “it’s all right baby. But next time, don’t wait so long. At least now you got the meds and you’ll start to feel better.”

She rested her head on his shoulder, “did I mention that I’m glad you’re here?”

He squeezed her fingers, “I’m glad I’m here too princess.”

By the next afternoon Kara’s antibiotics had kicked in and she was feeling slightly more human. She and Richie were in the chair together, flipping through the channels, trying to find something to watch. “When do you have to leave Rich?”

He looked down at her, “in the morning. We have a show tomorrow night and I told Jon I’d be back in time for sound check.”

Kara nodded, “we still on for next weekend?”

Richie kissed her head, “of course. This wasn’t exactly what I had in mind for us to be doing the next time we saw each other.”

Kara grimaced, “sorry. I didn’t intend on getting sick.”

He shushed her, “I know you didn’t. No one does. Just be prepared not to see much but the inside of my hotel room next weekend.”

Kara grinned at him, “promise?”

Chapter 50

Kara changed her pajamas for the second time that night after she changed her sheets. She had a fever, but without a thermometer she could only guess at what her temperature was. She only knew she was hot right now, but would soon be shivering with the chills. Padding out to the living room she dumped her sheets into the washer and went to pour herself yet another glass of juice. She had just shut the refrigerator door when her phone started vibrating madly on the table.

“Hello?” She croaked her greeting into the phone, her voice barely recognizable even to herself.

“Princess, is that you?” Richie pulled the phone from his ear and checked the number, sure he hadn’t misdialed.

“Yes Rich. It’s me.” She coughed again, “is everything okay?” She glanced at the clock, “how was the show?”

Richie winced at the sound of her cough, “Princess have you been to the doctor? You sound terrible.”

Kara tried to laugh, “that’s an improvement over how I feel.” He heard her sigh. “No, I haven’t been to the doctor. It’s just a cold. I’ll be fine in a couple of days.”

Richie wasn’t going to lecture her, she was a grown woman after all and she should know when she should go to the doctor. “The show was fine. What are you doing up anyway?”

Kara curled into their chair, “I had to change my sheets and my pajamas and my phone started vibrating.”

He rubbed his hand across his forehead, she was worse than Ava, “go back to bed princess. You have a fever, you shouldn’t be up and about.” He made a mental note to call his mother tomorrow and ask her to bring Kara some soup. “Where are you right now?”

Kara pulled a blanket around her, “our chair. I can breathe slightly better sitting up.”

Richie paced the room, “okay princess, stay in the chair, but try to get some sleep. I’ll call you tomorrow.”

After they hung up Richie decided against calling his mother. Instead, he threw some things in a bag and went and knocked on the door across the hall. Jon yawned as he opened the door, “what do you want?”

Richie didn’t hesitate, “the plane.”

Jon’s eyes widened in surprise; “what the hell for?”

Richie pushed Jon into the room and shut the door, “I just got off the phone with Kara, she’s sick and I want to go make sure she’s all right.”

Jon studied his friend, “you love her don’t you?”

Richie nodded, “I do man. Look, I’ll go tonight and meet you in Chicago on Saturday. I just need to see for myself that she’s all right.”

Jon could see the worry etched into Richie’s face. “Go man. Just be back in time for sound check on Saturday.”

Richie hugged him briefly, “thanks man.”

Jon waved him off, “just get out of here already and let me get some sleep.”

Richie used the key Kara had given him and he let himself into her apartment. After quietly dropping his bag and hanging up his coat he went in search of Kara. He found her curled up in the chair, covered with a blanket. He reached out and felt her forehead. She was warm, but not overly so. He left her to go make sure her bed was made. He came back out, scooped her up and settled her in her bed, pillows stacked under her head to keep her propped up. With a gentle kiss on her forehead he backed out of the room and shut the door.

Looking around he gathered up the two dirty glasses and put them in the dishwasher. He remembered her telling him she had to wash her sheets so he checked her washing machine, they were still in there. He moved the sheets to the dryer and stretched out on the couch.

When Kara opened her eyes she looked around, confused. How did I get in here? She couldn’t remember getting out of the chair and going back to bed. Getting up she grabbed some clean pajamas and decided that taking a shower might help her feel better. After brushing her teeth she stepped into the steamy shower and just stood there, letting the hot water cascade over her, the steam helping to ease her breathing.

When she was finished she dried off and pulled on her clean pajamas quickly, not wanting to get chilled. Pulling her hair back in a loose ponytail she headed to the kitchen for a cup of tea and more cold medicine. She stopped short as she made her way through the living room. There was someone on her couch.


Chapter 49

Richie rolled over. Laying flat on his back the sun warmed him, the ocean breeze caressed his skin and he could just make out a soft voice singing close by. He smiled as he realized it was Kara that was singing. Her soft voice called to him and he reached out to her. He moaned lightly as his fingers moved over her soft warm skin. When he opened his eyes he realized his fingers weren’t stroking over Kara, they were stroking his own over-eager dick. Fuck. He was too far gone to stop and he let himself fall back into the fantasy, picturing Kara in a barely there bikini, imagining it was her hand stroking him and her name rolled off his tongue as the warmth spilled over his hand.

Disgusted, he got up and headed to the shower. It wasn’t as if he hadn’t ever done this before. He shook his head as he shampooed his hair,
it’s only been a week and a half! What am I going to do when we go to Europe for six weeks? He sighed and rinsed the lather from his hair and body; he hadn’t missed anyone like this in so long. Other than Ava, he hadn’t really had anyone to miss in a long time.

Giving his hair and body a cursory rub with the towel and wrapping it around his waist, he brushed his teeth before padding to the table in his room and turning on his computer. Maybe Kara was online and they could chat. That might help.

He logged on and opened his Messenger program and was glad to see that she was on as well.

bluesguyatheart: hey princess.
bluesguyatheart: how are you today?

Kara had been pouring a glass of juice when she heard the ping. Coughing she hurried back to the computer.

karad: hi Richie!
karad: I’m all right.
karad: how about you?

bluesguyatheart: I’m okay. I miss you tho.
bluesguyatheart: I had a hot dream about you.

karad: I miss you too.
karad: You dreamt of me?

bluesguyatheart: You’re never far from my thoughts princess,
bluesguyatheart: even when I’m asleep apparently.

Kara was coughing and didn’t answer right back.

bluesguyatheart: princess, are you still there?

karad: yeah, just had a coughing fit.

bluesguyatheart: are you okay?
bluesguyatheart: are you sick?

Kara sneezed and blew her nose.

karad: that’s one word for it I guess.
karad: I think I’d rather be dead right about now tho.

She’d managed to catch the cold/flu that was going around the school. She’d woken up this morning feeling like death warmed over and her head so heavy and full that even with the cold meds and aspirin, she still wanted to crawl in a hole somewhere.

bluesguyatheart: I’m sorry princess.
bluesguyatheart: chicken soup. Ma always says chicken soup for a cold.

Kara couldn’t help the smile.

karad: it’s a little early for that yet.
karad: I’m drinking my OJ right now.

bluesguyatheart: that’s good. Tea too princess.
bluesguyatheart: how’s your throat?

Kara picked up her laptop and snuggled down into their chair.

karad: it’s a little sore from all the coughing.
karad: I hope this doesn’t last long.

bluesguyatheart: me too.

karad: God I hate being sick.

Richie smiled.

bluesguyatheart: me too. Glad it doesn’t happen often.

karad: I’m sorry Rich, but I’m gonna go back to bed.

bluesguyatheart: that’s okay princess.
bluesguyatheart: the guys’ll be here soon anyway.

karad: love you

bluesguyatheart: love you too. feel better.

Richie shut his computer down and reached for the bag to put it away. A flash of something red and shiny caught his attention. Reaching into the pocket he pulled out a flat package wrapped in red paper. The little card indicated it was from Kara. How did I miss this?

R -

I didn’t have time to go out and buy you anything for Valentine’s Day but I wanted to give you something. I hope you enjoy it.



He tore the paper off and found a CD that Kara had apparently made for him herself. Her handwriting in black sharpie wound its way around the CD. So you can hear me anytime you want.
Happy Valentine’s Day!

Richie booted up his computer again and slid the CD in. There was video from the other night at the school, the four songs she had previously recorded and two new ones that he hadn’t heard her sing before. Selecting the last one, he found some clothes and got dressed as he listened.

At last
My love has come along
My lonely days are over
And life is like a song

At last
The skies above are blue
My heart was wrapped up in clover
The night I have looked at you

I found a dream, that I could speak to
A dream that I, can call my own
I found a thrill, to press my cheek to
A thrill that I, have never known

You smiled, you smiled
And then the spell was cast
And here we are in heaven
For you are mine at last

I found a dream
That I could speak to
A dream that I can call my own
I found a thrill, to press my cheek to
A thrill that I, have never known

You smiled you smiled
And then the spell was cast
And here we are in heaven
For you are mine
At last
At last
At last