‹ Prequel: Chicago City Lights
Sequel: Make It Back to Me

I'll Be Right Beside You

Running Out of Time

May 22nd 2009
Ben Eager hated the city of New York, CUNY School of Journalism, and really, the entire field of journalism, altogether. Of course he would never tell his wife that he held that opinion. She would probably hit him. Either that, or she’d get really bummed out, misinterpreting his disdain for him not being supportive of her decision. He was actually very supportive of her move to New York. She wanted to go back to school, and CUNY was her dream school. There was no way he could tell her not to go. It still didn’t mean he liked it. Evelyn was going to be in a completely different state, nearly one thousand miles away.

He knew it was only a temporary situation, and he was trying to stay on the positive side. After his season ended, whenever that may be, he would be spending a lot of time in New York over the off season with her. It was an opportunity for him to experience a new place, and a place like New York. It was said that everyone needed to vacation there at least once, after all. She would be leaving the following Saturday, staying in Chicago for the remainder of the Blackhawks and Redwings series, however that ended. Ben appreciated that; he needed her support for the time being.

Pulling his helmet on and buckling the chin strap, he took a deep breath and followed his teammates out of the locker room. Game three of the Western Conference Finals was luckily for the Blackhawks, at the United Center. It was really a do or die game, having lost the first two at the Joe Louis Arena. As he stepped out onto the ice for warm-ups, he went straight to where he knew Evelyn was sitting. Sending a smile her way, which she returned, he got into his warm-up routine of shooting pucks, stretching, and skating around.

He would glance at her every once in a while to see her talking animatedly with Kita and Phoebe, making him laugh. Though, he made a note to talk to her about what she wore to games, or anywhere, really. The guys that sat next to Evelyn had their eyes practically glued to her, his wife, which simply did not fly with Ben. Calling out to Andrew Ladd, who was a few feet over from him doing some stick-handing, he asked for his puck. Ladder watched as Ben eyed up the boards from ten feet away from them, pulling back and firing the puck forward.

The puck hit the boards with a sound like a gun going off, right where Evelyn, Kita, Phoebe, and the guys that had been started talking to Evelyn were sitting. All six of them jumped at the sound, Evelyn narrowing her eyes at Ben as he grinned at her. He moved his gaze to the three guys to Evelyn’s right, making sure to glare at them long enough to let them get the hint. He watched them sink back into their seats, looking away from the girls. Ben nodded his head at his job well-done before going back to his warm-up.

In their seats, the girls burst into a fit of giggles, Evelyn laughing the hardest.

“Did Ben really just do that?” Kita asked once she had calmed down.

“Oh, I think he did,” Phoebe laughed, sending a look at the three guys who still looked scared for their lives.

“What was that about?” One of them finally asked, turning slightly to glance at Evelyn. “Why did Ben Eager just glare at us?”

“You were hitting on his wife!” Phoebe exclaimed, causing everyone in their immediate area to look at the small group. “Oh, my bad, Lyn,” she added, knowing she had probably just embarrassed her best friend. Evelyn shook her head, glancing at the people around them and offering a weak ‘hello’ and a small wave.

“Oh,” one of the guys said, glancing at the large diamond rings on her left hand, something he had failed to notice before. “Sorry.”

“It’s fine,” Evelyn laughed. “Just don’t do it again or Ben’s really going to get pissed.”

The game, when it finally started, gave the Hawks a three-goals-to-none lead very early into the second period, but the Redwings had answered with three goals of their own, and going into the third period the score was tied at three goals a piece. The girls were literally on the edge of their seats, biting their nails. It was just so intense. The Hawks looked like a different team, more determined, and less star-struck at the veteran Detroit team than the first two games. They managed to hold off the Wings for a scoreless third period, sending the game into overtime.

By then, every fan in the United Center was on their feet, Phoebe, Kita, and Evelyn included. It only took a minute and fifty two seconds for the game to be over, Patrick Sharp releasing a wicked snap shot off assists from Phalsson and Byfuglien. The UC erupted into the loudest cheers the girls had ever heard, the players literally mobbing each other on the ice. Evelyn grabbed her bag and followed the guys next to her out of the isle, waiting for Phoebe and Kita to catch up once she got to the concourse.

They met up with the other wives and girlfriends who were already inside the lounge area of the locker room, having had an easier walk down to the locker room from the box where they sat. So many times they had asked the three to join them there, but Kita, Phoebe and Evelyn politely declined. There was nothing like sitting with the fans. Why the others didn’t see that, they’d never know.

“Ben’s looking for you,” Evelyn heard as soon as they walked in. Laughing to herself, she figured it was because she had gotten hit on. Kita and Phoebe were telling the hilarious story for her as she made her way into the locker room, walking to Ben’s stall.

“My knight in shining hockey gear,” She laughed, wrapping her arms around him from behind. She heard him laugh and he turned in her arms, wrapping his own arms around her.

“Did those creeps leave you alone?”

“They were afraid to look at me after that, Ben.”

“Then my job was done.”

“You’re such a caveman sometimes.”

“What the hell are you two talking about?” Sharpie asked from a few stalls down, but before Ben or Evelyn could answer, Andrew Ladd did.

“Ben shot a puck at the boards where Evelyn was sitting because he could see these three guys next to her, hitting on her and fucking staring at her. It sounded like a gun went off, and they about shit their pants. It was so fucking funny.”

The room erupted into laughter, Sharpie making the comment, “No man hits on Ben’s woman and gets away with it.” And it was true, too. Ben was so protective of her, but not overprotective. He knew his wife could handle herself when it came to guys, and he was sure she got hit on everywhere she went, but when the perfect opportunity had arose to scare the shit out of those three guys, how was he supposed to pass that up?

Evelyn kissed his cheek and told him to hurry up before walking back out to the lounge. He watched her leave, smirking lightly to himself as her hips swayed back and forth, definitely more than usual, just because she knew Ben was watching her. How he was going to go up to four months without seeing her once he had to get back to Chicago for the preseason and she stayed in New York, he didn’t know.

Evelyn was wondering the same thing, as she sat on the couches and waited for him to get ready to head to their apartment. Ben was her rock, he was her protector, and he was the one person, no matter what, who could make her smile. To others around them, Ben was quiet and reserved, but to Evelyn, he was the loudest, more hilarious guy she had ever met. No one would know Ben like she knew him, except maybe his family. But even then, they never got to see the terribly romantic and incredibly charming man he was. That was all reserved for Evelyn.

She felt him put his hands on her shoulders and his lips on her cheek from behind her as he leaned over the back of the couch. Quietly telling her he was ready; she hopped up off the couch and let herself be pulled from the locker room. Everyone knew what Ben had on his mind. It was something he always had on his mind, once again letting his thoughts drift to how he was planning on being a thousand miles away from her for months at a time.

He laughed when she tried to pretend that she didn’t know what he was in the mood for when they got back to their place. She went into the kitchen and told him she was going to do the dishes, but he knew she was bullshitting; there was two cups in the sink to be washed, nothing else. He grabbed her around the waist and picked her up, making her squeal at him as he carried her into the bedroom. He could have continued the playfulness he had started, but when Evelyn landed on the bed with a small ‘thud’ and laid there looking up at him with her big brown eyes, he couldn’t.

The bad feeling was creeping into his stomach again, and all he could do was come down on top of her, pressing his lips to hers with everything he had, somehow trying to show her how much he would miss her with a kiss. He knew she understood though, when her delicate hands came up to his neck, holding his head in place as she pressed her lips just as forcefully back on his. Pulling away from the kiss, ever so slightly he told, “I love you so much.”

“Ben, don’t make it sound like we’re saying goodbye.”

“It feels like we are.”

“Ben, please…”

“I can’t help but feel like this isn’t going to work out. That we’re not going to work out.”

She frowned, pushing him off of her. She sat quiet for a long time, her eyes looking everywhere but at him. He sat and waited for her to look at him, for her to say something. She finally looked up at him, tears in her eyes, and he immediately wrapped his arms around her, “Don’t cry, Lyn.” He shook his head slightly at the complete one-eighty she had made since they had been home. She went from giggling and teasing him to crying on his chest. Only Evelyn, he thought.

“Ben, am I making a mistake?”

He wanted so bad to say she was, but he couldn’t. Instead he told her, “You said it yourself, Lyn. Going to New York might be a mistake, but you have to try.” She nodded, wiping the little bit of wetness from her cheeks. Ben kept his eyes locked on hers, as she smiled up at him lightly.

“Okay,” She said, smiling and wrapping her arms around him. “We can have sex now.”

He laughed, “You still want to after that mood swing?”

“I’m going to let you in on a little secret… I’m always in the mood.”


“Yes,” She laughed, pulling him toward her and pressing her lips against his, cutting off anything else he had to say. She’d be leaving in a week, and she wanted to have as much of Ben as possible.
♠ ♠ ♠
There I go with that damned foreshadowing again! ;)

Important note!!!
This story is winding down to a close soon. I'm not sure of exactly how many chapters are left, but I'm thinking at the most it's 5 more parts. If you follow me on twitter, you might have seen me mention that I have TWO POSSIBLE ENDINGS. One would officially end the story, no more Ben and Evelyn. The second one would lead to a third part of the story.

I will honestly be happy with either one, though I would love to write more Ben and Evelyn. The thing that I worry about is that I will BORE you guys. I don't want to keep writing Ben and Evelyn if no one's going to read it...

So the big question is...

Do you want me to make another sequel, a third story, or just end it here at the second story?

So, please comment!!!
Let me know what you think! I want as many comments as possible, because it's up to YOU if I make a 3rd story!