Status: coming this summer!


Like everything I've ever known

The puck flew by Jon’s head, sinking into the netting of the goal as Darryl threw down his clipboard on the sidelines, letting out a scream of frustration. Jon sighed, standing back up as the rest of the team started their passing drills, taking a drink of water. He started counting in his head, and just as he’d made his way from three all the way to zero, Darryl hollered.

“Quick, get your ass over here!” Jon sighed, skating over and stopping in front of his coach, who was red in the face.

“Yes?” He asked, bracing himself.

“Where the Hell is the Quick who got us into the playoffs?!” Darryl demanded. “We don’t have a prayer against the Bruins if you don’t get your shit together.”

“I’m sorry Darryl it’s just…” He stopped, pressing his lips together. He hated it when his personal life effected his playing, but he had to admit to himself that it wasn’t just a coincidence. “Something’s up with Amerie.” Darryl sighed, running a hand through his hair, but Jon cut him off, knowing what was coming. “I know I’m supposed to leave everything else off the ice, but she’s all I can think about.”

“What’s wrong?” Anze asked, waiting to get his skates sharpened. Jon sighed.

“She’s just different. She’s trying to hide it, but I can see how hard it is for her to smile. Hell she hasn’t laughed since three days ago.” Jon then winced. “Jesus what if she’s pregnant?” Anze and Darryl took Jon’s distraction to look at each other, concern in their eyes.

“Look.” Darryl said. “Why don’t you go talk to her?”

“But what about practice?” Jon asked.

“We both know that you’re the best in the league unless something like this happens. Practice won’t help, you need to talk to her.” Jon sighed, nodding.

“Thanks coach.”

“Just win tomorrow and that’s all the thanks I need.” Darryl said bluntly. As Jon walked into the locker room Darryl grabbed his phone, immediately dialing Amerie’s number. He knew she couldn’t reject his call, and finally she answered.

“Mr. Sutter.” She greeted simply. She couldn’t even hide how miserable she was in her voice as it shook on the last word. Darryl let out a long sigh.

“He knows.”


“Not that.” He said quickly. “But he knows that something is bothering you and it’s messing with his head. I sent him home to talk to you, so I’d start thinking of a cover story.” There was a long moment of silence before she spoke again, her voice shaking uncontrollably.

“This is why I should have just left.” She whispered. “He can tell when I’m lying, he’ll find out the truth and-”

“Amerie.” Darryl interrupted. “We hired you to make him better, and right now you’re not keeping up your end. I know this is hard but just tell him.”

“I can’t.” She whimpered. “Then he’ll want to know how many client’s I’ve had and it’ll be a huge mess and-”

“Just tell him Amerie.” Anze said, taking the phone from Darryl. “Just tell Jon the truth and then we can all move past it.”

“Tell me what truth?” Both Anze and Darryl froze as they turned to see Jon, having come back for his water bottle. He looked at them both for a long time, nodding to the phone. “You two know what’s wrong, don’t you?”

“Jon-” Anze started, but Darryl cut him off.

“It’s a different Jon.”

“Why would you be talking to Amerie about a different Jon?” He demanded. Both men stayed quiet, and the practice had come to a halt as the team looked at him. Jon looked at them, and just shook his head at their guilty expressions. “WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?!” He roared. But as no one answered him Jon ran back to the locker room, not caring about his bag, his water bottle, or the fact he was in nothing but sweatpants, because the woman he loved was hiding something from him.

He raced home, and was surprised he didn’t get a ticket as he pulled into the driveway. Madison had gone to Jaclyn’s for the rest of the playoff season, leaving nothing for Amerie to use as a buffer. He walked up to the door, throwing it open to see her sitting on the couch in tears.

His anger at her hiding something immediately vanished when he saw how miserable she was. He dropped his car keys to the floor, making his way over to the couch and sitting beside her. She was an absolute wreck, just sobbing uncontrollably into her hands as he rubbed her back. He hated seeing her even remotely upset, so knowing that something had her this broken, this absolutely devastated, was killing him.

“Amerie.” He murmured, looking into her eyes. “It’s alright, I’m here.” She turned, gripping him tightly and sobbing into his chest. He just held her gently, trying to calm her down as he stroked her hair. He felt crushed that she was hiding whatever was so terrible from his as her sobs caused her small body to shake uncontrollably. But finally, after about twenty minutes, she got a hold of herself.

“Jon.” She said, wiping her eyes. She then let out another choked sob. “Jesus I don’t even know where to start.” He just reached out, cradling her face in his hand.

“It’s alright Amerie, just tell me and we’ll get through it, together.” She just sniffled, shaking her head.

“There’s no getting past this Jon.” She whimpered. “I’m a terrible person and I don’t even deserve to know a great man like you.” He felt fear knot in his stomach as his mind raced over what could be so bad that she was so sure she would hate him if he knew. But he could never hate Amerie, she was his soul mate, he just knew it. He loved her from the moment he’d first laid eyes on her and he could never let her out of his life. He reached down, trying to show his support by taking her hands in his.

“Tell me.” He pleaded. She let out a shaky breath, her eyes staying on their hands.

“I didn’t meet you by chance Jon.” She whispered. “I’m a special type of relationship counselor. I become men’s rebound relationship when they are distraught from a break up, divorce, or separation, and I help them move past the relationship.” Jon was silent as she kept her eyes on the floor, unable to look at him. “Darryl hired me to help you get over Jaclyn. Our entire chance meeting was a set up, Anze distracted you while the guys brought Madison over to the swings and I pretended to find her.”

He was just silent, his eyes a million miles away and she nodded. “I was never supposed to care about you.” She whispered. “And I think it’d just be best for both of us if I left.” He stayed silent and she wondered if he could even hear her as she stood. “Goodbye Jon.” She whispered. With that she turned, quickly grabbing her bag by the door and Jean Claude’s carrier before she ran to her car, unable to look back at the man she knew she had broken.

Jon just sat there, the entire world being put on pause as Amerie’s words sunk in. He let out a shaky breath, feeling like he was going to be sick as he finally came back to the real world. Amerie was hired, everything that had happened between them had been a complete lie, and she’d even had the audacity to drag his daughter into it. But as soon as the harsh words crossed his mind, Jon regretted them.

No woman was that good of an actress, she really had cared about Maddi, Hell, she had become like another mother, and Jon had caught Maddi calling her mom on more than one occasion. So if Amerie had really loved Madison, had she really loved him too? He shook his head, knowing he needed to ask her, but as he looked up she was gone. He then remembered her saying goodbye, but it was unreal, like a half remembered dream.

He shot up, needing to know she was still there as he looked around the living room. “Amerie?” He whispered. There was no answer. He became frantic, running through the house and looking for some sigh, clothing, Jean Claude, something that would let him know he hadn’t just sat there as the woman he loved walked right out of his life. But as he searched the guestroom for something, anything, it was like the beautiful French Canadian had never existed.

He let out a choked sob, collapsing on the guest bed where he had made love to her just the other night when something caught his eye. He knelt down, picking up a piece of paper, and when he turned it over he saw the glossy side of a photo. He looked at a young Amerie, her bright eyes unmistakable as she stood with two boys around her age, he knew they must be her brothers, and her parents. Behind them was a bakery, constructed to look like a French bistro with tables and flowers out front. Amerie held a pair of scissors in her hand, and red ribbon laid at her small feet. He just ran his thumb over her face, pressing his lips together before he grabbed his phone.

“Darryl.” He said, not waiting for a greeting. “Martin’s going to have to play tomorrow.”

“What, why? Jon what happened?” He looked at the photo again, biting his lip.

“I’m going after her.”


A small, petite woman with long chestnut hair laced with silver stood at the counter, rolling croissants. She hummed as she worked, her old hands still youthful in her movements as she prepared the pastries. Her apron and dress beneath were splattered with flour, as were her cheeks, but she didn’t mind.

“Pierre?” She asked, her bright eyes turning to the other room. An older man with dark eyes and blonde hair stuck his head in the doorway, smiling at his wife.

“Yes my love?” She smiled, blushing at the way he still looked at her after all these years.

“Bake with me, like the old days.” She said softly. He beamed as he walked over, washing his hands before he helped her start preparing the buttery treats for the oven. They were quiet for a long time before she spoke again, her eyes sad.

“I saw a photo of her in some gossip magazine the other day, with that hockey player.” She whispered. The man, Pierre, sighed.

“Marie, you couldn’t have stopped her-”

“But I could have supported her Pierre.” She whispered. “I drove our daughter away and she’s never coming back because I couldn’t support her dreams.” He set down the croissant, setting his worn, rough hands on her slender shoulders before kissing the top of her head.

“Someday she’ll come back to us my love, I’m sure of it. Amerie loves us.”

“And that’s why I know it must kill her that the last time we spoke was our screaming match before I told her to…” She stopped, tears rolling down her face. “Before I told my own little girl to leave and never come back.” Pierre simply held her, running his fingers through her hair before there was a knock on the door.

“We’re closed.” Pierre said, assuming it must be some tourist. But the footsteps continued into the kitchen, and as Pierre looked over to scream at whoever it was, he froze. Marie felt how stiff he was as sniffled, looking up to be met with a timid Amerie, standing in the doorway. They just looked at her, waiting to blink and have their daughter be gone, but she stayed put.

“Bonjour mama, bonjour papa.” She whispered. She then smiled, tears in her cyan blue eyes. “I’m home.”
♠ ♠ ♠
Go get her Jon!
Do you think she'll go back to him?
Or will she insist it's for the best they stay apart?
Thanks so much for reading!