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Friday, March 17, 2017


Dean pocketed his cell phone before he turned to the two men with him.  “Well, it looks like I’m going to be heading back to Elmville for a few days,” he said.  “It’s a good thing we got all the cabins repaired.”

“What’s the matter?” the taller of the two men asked.

“Nothing wrong,” his boss answered.  “Just need to help a friend with his garage make over.  I promised him I would be there when he was ready.”

“Sounds like that’s gunna take more than two days,” the shorter man said with a bit of a smirk on his face.

The contractor smiled back when he saw a grin curling at the corner of Griff’s mouth.  “What are you two grinning at?”

Griff looked over at Jax then seeing a slight nod from him, he answered his boss and friend, “Might not take as long if you had help.”

“That’s a fact,” Dean agreed.  “I know you could get away, Griff, but do you think your men would let you leave the resort for a couple of days, Jax?”

“Um, I don’t know, Dean,” the younger man replied.  “They let me go to the cabins with you guys.  I don’t see why they wouldn’t let me go to Elmville if I was with you two.”  Jax blushed then added, “But they’ll have the last word.”

“Let me talk to Jeff about getting the time off then we can ask the big guys,” Dean suggested to Jax.  “But for now, let’s get back to work.” 

The men had spent the day working on the cabin in the cove that only employees used when they needed some time away from the resort proper.  The roof needed a few shingles.  Dean was handling that while the younger men worked on the dock. 

“I hope James and Heath let you go to Elmville with us,” Griff said.

“Me too,” Jax agreed.  “My Mom lives there.  And since she got rid of that piece of shit she called a husband I wouldn’t mind seeing her again.”

“From what you told me he was a real piece of work.”

“Yeah,” Jax said shaking his head.  “I don’t know if the guys will let me go if they think I want to see her.”

“I don’t know why they wouldn’t want you to see her,” Griff said.  “She is your Mom after all.”

Jax didn’t say anything for a minute or two, just continued to hammer the nails into the plank he was replacing.  “Maybe I’ll ask them if it’s ok,” he finally said.

Before Griff could say anything, Dean was yelling for the boys to finish up.  The sun was riding low in the sky and they needed to pack up and head home.

The ride back was quiet. Dean was going over in his head what he was going to say to Jeff.  While Jax was doing much the same only with his partners.

As the construction crew passed the infirmary Jax asked Dean to stop and let him out.  He wanted to talk to Heath about going to Elmville.  If Heath wasn’t ok with it he didn’t figure there was much chance James would be.

Heath heard the side door open and walked into the hall to see who it was.  He smiled when he saw his youngest lover.  “Hey, babe,” he said leaning over to kiss his young man, “to what do I owe the pleasure of this visit?”

Jax returned the kiss, nuzzling in closer to his man.  “Well, um, Dean needs to go back to Elmville for a couple of days and he asked if I could go.”

Heath raised an eyebrow.  “I’m not too sure…”

Before the Doc could finish his sentence Jax jumped in, “Before you say no, Griff is going too.”

Putting his arm over the smaller man’s shoulder Heath said, “Let’s go find James so we don’t have to have this conversation twice.”  He guided Jax to the front door and down the steps.  Knowing James would still be at his office the two men walked in that direction.

James looked up when a shadow blocked the light coming in his office door. "Well, if it's not my two most favorite people in the world. To what do I owe this honor?" he asked, his smoky blue eyes twinkling.

"Funny that was just what I said when Jax popped into the infirmary," the doctor chuckled while the younger man only blushed.

James got up and went over and pulled both men into a three-way hug and then kissed each one and asked again, "What is it?"

Returning the hug Heath kissed the side of James's cheek.  Jax wrapped his arm around James's waist.

Once James released his two men he said, "Have a seat. You two don't usually come to visit me here at my office unless it's something important." He took a seat on an overstuffed chair near the sofa.

With his hand on Jax’s shoulder Heath guided their young man farther into the office.  They both sat down on the couch.

"Jax has something he wants to ask us."

James sat back and tried to relax. "What is it Jax?" he asked his youngest partner.

"Well, um," Jax started then remember what James had told him in the past about speaking clearly and keeping eye contact. He cleared his throat then started again.  "Dean needs to go to Elmville to finish a project for a friend," he explained clearly.  "He asked me and Griff if we wanted to go with him.  Griff can go because he doesn’t have a partner but I told Dean I needed to ask you two."

James's brow creased in consternation. "Thank you for coming to us before you committed to going with them, Jax.” He glanced at Heath.  “I'm not sure about this... what if Gene is still lurking around there somewhere?" he asked in concern.

Fear flashed in Jax’s eyes but he quickly recovered.  “But Duke said he was heading west.”

"Yes, he did, but there's not any way to tell if he stayed there once he got there or if he even really left."

"Babe," Heath said pulling his boy to him, "we just don't want to take a chance that you might get hurt."

Dean had just left Jeff's office after telling him he needed to take a couple of days off and that he wanted to take Griff and hopefully, Jax with him.  He planned on talking to James next and stopped just outside the owner’s door when he heard them talking.

James replied, "Yes, sweetheart, you're too precious to be broken up by that as... that man."

"But Gene wouldn’t even try if I'm with Dean,” Jax whined hating that he was sounding like a little kid.

James said, "If you didn't go to Elmville we wouldn't have to worry about it at all, would we?"

Deflated Jax answered, "No sir."

Dean took that moment to knock on the door.

James frowned a bit, then said, "We'll finish this in a minute." He got up and answered the door. "Dean, what a pleasure.  We've just been talking about you. Come on in."

"Thanks James," Dean said looking over at the two men on the couch.  "I was hoping to talk to you before you made your decision."

"You’re too late, Dean, they already said I can't go."

James quirked an eyebrow. "I didn't say you couldn't go, just that I was concerned about Gene being around.  When you tried to argue, that’s when I said if you didn't go to Elmville we wouldn't have anything to worry about," he corrected.

"I understand your concern, James, but Jax will be with me across town from his mother's house.  Both Griff and I will be with him even if Gene was around and tried something,” the contractor said.  "But even if Gene was in town I just don't see how he would know Jax was there."

For the first time since he entered his oldest partner’s office Jax began to have hope.

"How long do you think you would be in Elmville?" Heath asked.

"No more than three days but with both Griff and Jax's help we should only be gone two days.”

James nodded as Heath spoke. "Well you will be with Jax and you do know Gene."

"I doubt I will ever forget him."

James gave Dean a small smile. "Yes, I doubt that any of us will."

"I know what that poor excuse for a man can do, James.  I know what he looks like.  I was there with Duke after he hurt Mutt," Dean growled.  "You can trust that I'd never let that man close to Jax."

James closed his eyes and his brow furrowed in thought, then the smoky blue eyes opened and he looked at Heath. "What do you think Doc?"

Heath looked at James, searching his face, his eyes.  He knew James needed confirmation before he would allow their younger partner to possibly ride into harm’s way.  Then he turned to look at their boy whose eyes sparkled with hope. It was plainly written in his eyes, Jax would do what they asked of him but did they have the right to keep him home.  "I think we need to let Jax go with Dean and Griff."

Jax let out his breath and waited for James to agree.

The older man looked at Jax, Heath and then Dean. "All right, but you stay with Dean at all times. Is that perfectly clear?"

"Yes sir."

“And you call us at lunch and dinner,” Heath added.

"Yes sir."

James nodded. "All right and Dean has permission to deal with you if he needs to while he's in charge," he said, giving Dean a long look.

Jax looked at Dean blushing.

"Jax's never given me trouble and I doubt he will in the next three days," Dean responded.

James nodded again. "Yes, but he's never been off resort property while working with you and there will be more temptations."

"We will be staying at the project site.  I promised my friend that I would help him remodel his garage into a studio apartment.  So, we won't have any time to fool around and still get back here in two days,” Dean explained.  "Right Jax?"

"Right," the younger man agreed. 

James said, "Then you may go with my, our blessings, but be aware of the things I've said."

"Ok then, since that's settled," Heath said standing up, "let's get home and start dinner and get your stuff together."

"Thanks James," Jax said then walked over to his lover and leaning down hugged his neck.  "I'll be careful."

James returned the hug and said, "Good, make sure of that,” then he stood up. "Take good care of Jax for us Dean."

"We will take care of each other, James.  With Jax there the time will go by faster so thank you for letting him come with us."

"You're welcome," James told the other man with a smile.  “Hurry back to us, we'll miss you hogging the bed," he teased Jax.

Jax laughed, "I don't hog the bed.  Mostly I get squished."

James chuckled. "But what good is a sandwich without the filling?"

Dean laughed too but wondered when he would have a partner to share a bed with, someone to protect the way James and Heath did for Jax.


At 5 a.m. next morning James and Heath kissed their young lover good-bye and watched from the porch as he walked toward the parking lot to meet up with Griff and Dean, his tool belt over one shoulder and back pack over the other.

The three-hour trip to Elmville was uneventful, with the two younger men catching up on the sleep they missed by having to get up so early.  Dean, having a list of materials at the ready for when his friend, Carl, was ready for him to convert the garage into his man cave, decided to stop at the local lumber yard before going to the house.  He pulled through the gate and parked at the contractor entrance before waking the others.

“Up and at ‘em, boys,” Dean said, “we’re here.”

Jax yawned and looked around. "Where is here?" he asked.

Griff sat upright, rubbing at his eyes as he also looked around.  He squinted a little as his eyes adjusted to bright morning light.  He took in his surroundings quickly and said, "The lumberyard, I guess?  What's first, Dean?"

"We need to get some supplies," Dean answered.

"Lead on, boss." Griff smiled. "Or do you want us to split up and get different things to make it go faster?"

"Why don't you boys look around and I'll order the studs, sheetrock and insulation,” Dean instructed, then added, "If I need to send one of you back because I forgot something you'll know where to look."

Dean walked up to the counter exchanging greetings with friends.

Griff and Jax walked down one aisle and up the next, carefully taking mental inventory of where everything was, occasionally stopping to admire something that caught their eye.

Knowing they would probably need plumbing supplies Jax steered Griff towards the big sign that read PLUMBING.  The younger man stopped dead in his tracks as they entered the aisle.  Half way down the aisle was his mother. Her back was to him but he knew it was her.  He was wondering if he should just back out of the row when she turned around.

"Jax?" she said softly, then more loudly and with a smile on her face, "Jax! Oh, my Lord!  There you are! How are you, honey? Where have you been? What are you doing here?"

"Um, hi, Mom," Jax mumbled not moving toward her.

A look of sadness crossed her features but she tried to keep smiling. "Honey, I've thought of you so often since you left. How are you? You look good."

Jax felt Griff nudge him and snapped out of his stupor.   "Mom," he said again and hurried down the aisle to lift his mother in a hug.  "I've, um, missed you too."

Katy Thomas smiled broadly and hugged her son as though she would never let him go again.

He gently lowered her back to the floor and looked around.  "Are you here alone?" he asked worried that maybe Gene had come back.

Katy had no problem understanding exactly what Jax was worried about.  "I'm here alone, Hon," she reassured him, "but Gene is still here in town.  He’s living in the back room of his boat rental business.  I’ve had to get a restraining order against him so I’ve only seen him a couple of times since I kicked him out... which is a good thing for the most part, except when I need things done around the house, then I either have to pay through the nose to have someone else do it, or try to do it myself.  I don't know the difference between the faucets here or how to install them."

"I'm glad you got rid of him, Mom," her son agreed relieved that the man was out of her life.  "But I thought he left here and was going to the other side of the country.”  Jax looked around nervously as he ran his hand through his sandy blond hair.  “At least that’s what he told Duke when he came to the res... place I’m living.”

“Gene is very good at lying to protect himself,” his mother sadly said.  “He’s been here the whole time, well, except for a few days a couple of months ago.”

“Yeah,” Griff joined in, “that’s about the time he was there.”

Katy looked worried.  “Did he hurt you again?” she asked afraid of the answer.

“No, Mom, I never even saw him,” Jax answered.  “Remember the two guys that were with Mutt, um, the guy that brought you the letter from me?”

“Yes,” his mother answered.  “I don’t know their names though.”

“Well, Gene ran right smack into them when he was spying on me.  Griff saw the whole thing.  Two other security guards were there too,” Jaxon explained. 

Remembering that day, Griff smiled.  “Dean decked him.  That’s when Gene said he was leaving the state.”

“I heard Gene was sporting a bruised jaw when he came back.  But he didn’t tell Dwayne where he got it.”

“Is Dwayne still working for him at the boat rental?” Jax asked.

Katy laughed.  “Yes,” she grinned, “Dwayne lets his wife know what Gene is up too and she tells me.  Heaven help Dwayne if Gene ever finds out.”

“Gene would never hurt Dwayne, Mom.  His nephew’s on the police force.”

“It’s a wonder Gene hasn’t fired him but I think he knows he’d never find anyone else willing to work for him,” Jax’s mom said. “I’m so glad you don’t have to deal with your dad anymore, honey.”

“Mom, that piece of shi…” Jax stopped watching the pain in his mother’s face. “Gene was never any kind of dad to me, Mom.”

“I know, Hon,” Katy whispered, tears forming in her brown eyes.

Jax pulled his mother to him and enveloped her in a protective hug. 

Dean turned from the counter after arranging for his order to be delivered in time to see Jax hug the woman he knew to be the boy's mother.  He hurried back to the plumbing department just in case he was needed.

Katy saw movement from the corner of her eye and noticed the tall man walking toward her.  At first, she was surprised, thinking he might have been her soon to be ex-husband and then pleased it wasn’t. "I remember you! I'm sorry, I don't think I ever caught your name though," she said holding out her hand for him to shake. “And I know I never properly thanked you for helping that young man out.”

"Mom, this is Dean Montgomery, and Griff Holden," Jax introduced his friends. "We're in town to do a remodeling job."

Dean nodded saying, "It's nice seeing you again, Mrs. Thomas.  And we were just glad we were here for Mutt."

"It's nice to see you again, Dean. And it's a pleasure to meet you, Griff,” Jax’s mom said.  “I can’t tell you how happy I am that you brought my only son back to me, Dean.” 

Jax gently hugged his mom again.  “Me too, Mom, but we are only here for a couple of days.”

“Oh,” the woman sighed.  Then with a slight grin she continued, “I’m just glad I got to see you then.”

Jax was having mixed feelings because since he had come back to Maine, he had never been sure his mother wanted him there. 

Dean could see the conflict in his friend's face and decided to pull his mother’s attention away.  “What are you doing here at the hardware store, Mrs. Thomas?”

“I was just telling Jaxon and Griff that since I’m single again, I’m having to do the repairs around the house. So here I am looking at faucets. As long as you're here, perhaps you guys could give me some advice about which is the best faucet for my sink? I bought a how to book but it didn't give me specifics and now I'm completely confused," she laughed a little self-consciously.

"We can do one better than that, Mrs. Thomas.  What if we stop by after work tonight and fix it for you?" Dean suggested.  "Your son is quite the handyman."

Blushing Jax explained, "Me and Griff work for Dean, Mom.  He's a contractor and owns his own construction company."

"Oh, Jax, how wonderful! You've always been good with your hands," his mom smiled happily.  "I'm so happy that you found a good job.  And... well... I'd say no to the offer of help, but I'm really clueless and would appreciate it.  How much do you charge per hour so that I can make sure I have the money ready for you when you're done?"

Jax looked at Dean before stating, "Mom, I can't charge you to work at your house."

Katy looked as though she were ready to cry again but contained herself quickly. She felt so guilty about not paying more attention to him not only while he was growing up but also since he'd come to live with her. She knew that she didn't deserve his kindness.  "You have to let me do something. If you won't let me pay, can I at least offer you dinner?"

"We'd love a home cooked meal, Mrs. Thomas," Dean answered.  He noticed that Griff was being awful quiet and had stepped back behind him.  "Right, guys?"

"What would you like? I have a nice roast, or I can make a pasta dish?  I'll make the roast. It's the least I can do," she said happily.  "But, um..." she winced a little, "I'm still not sure which faucet to buy."

Jax laughed. "Mom, just a simple meal is fine," he said.  "We don't expect anything fancy."

"Which faucet is giving you the problem, Mrs. Thomas?" Dean asked.  "Bathroom or kitchen?"

"Please, Dean, Griff, call me Katy. And it's the kitchen faucet," she replied.  “I don't know whether to go with a single or double... and it's leaking like crazy under the sink. I turned off the water but now everything underneath is warped...." she looked a little frazzled as she glanced back at the wide array of faucets displayed.

"We'll look at it tonight and if we need to get supplies I'll send the boys over in the morning to finish it up," Dean said.

Jax looked at Dean remembering what James had said about him staying with the big man.  And now, knowing that Gene was still in town he didn’t want to go anywhere without Duke’s brother.

"Thank you so much, Dean. You don't know how much I appreciate this. Gene was an ass, but he was handy when it came to things like this."

"Have you heard from Gene since he left, Katy?"

Katy's face fell a little at the mention of seeing her hopefully soon to be ex-husband. "I was just telling Jaxon that Gene’s still here in town but I have a restraining order against him so he has to stay away from me," she said.  "I served him with divorce papers last week."

"If you have any problems I'm sure one of my partners can help you," Jax said without thinking.

"One of your partners?" she asked, confused.  "What do you mean... one? Are you in business?"

Jax blushed not knowing exactly how to answer her.  “No, Mom, we live together.”

“How... how many partners do you have?" her eyes grew wide with confusion and fear, wondering what her son had gotten himself into. Had he joined some sort of cult? Was he in any danger? She eyed Dean and Griff nervously.

Realizing what he had revealed Jax leaned over kissing his mom on the cheek. "We can talk about it tonight, Mom, but we need to get to work now."

"Jaxon," she began hesitantly, "I know I wasn't much of a mom to you, but... if you're in some sort of trouble... I'm here for you. You can always come home."

Laughing at the idea he was in trouble Jax said, "Mom, believe me when I say I'm happier than I have been in a very long time."

While she was still a little nervous about what her son had said, she could see that he was indeed much happier. She managed a smile said, “When do you think you'll be over for dinner so I can have it ready for you when you arrive."

"We can be there at 6:30 if that's ok, Katy?" Dean answered.

"That would be perfect. I'll see you then. And thank you again so much for your help," she replied gratefully. "I was beginning to get a headache trying to figure it all out." She laughed a little at herself, looking somewhat embarrassed.

"See you tonight, Mom," her son said hugging her again.

"I’ll see you all tonight," Katy promised, hugging her son back before turning to leave.

Dean said his goodbyes and led the young men out to his truck.

Once at the truck Dean turned to Griff, hand on his shoulder.  "Are you feeling ok, Bud?"

Griff sighed a little and said quietly, "I just don't know what to say sometimes. Especially around other people's family. I... well... I've been alone for so long. I lost my folks when I was a teenager, and then... well..." He didn't want to mention the name of his beloved partner; the hurt was still too raw. "I'm sorry, guys. I guess, I just get a little jealous or... I dunno," he finished hopelessly.

Jax watched as Dean put his arms around this man who was still a boy in some ways.  "We understand, Bud, it takes time," the older man assured him.

Griff managed a weak smile and blushed a little. "Thanks guys."

Among the three of them, the work on the new man cave moved along smoothly. Jax had remembered his promise to his partners and had called them when they broke for lunch.  He told his guys about everything he had been doing but neglected to tell them about his mother or that his step-father was still in Elmville. He promised to call them again about 8:30 p.m. hoping that they would be back from dinner by then.

Dean called it a day at 5:30 with plenty of time for the three of them to get cleaned up and over to Jax's mom's house.

She greeted them at the door with a wide, happy smile on her face, her fears for the time being laid to rest until she could hear what her son had to say. "Come in, boys! Dinner is ready!" she said, guiding them in and shutting the door behind them. "There are hooks right here behind the door for your jackets."

"Something smells wonderful," Griff said, sniffing appreciatively, then he blushed when he realized he'd spoken aloud.

Katy smiled. "I hope you enjoy dinner tonight." She gestured them toward the dining room where a large plate of pork chops, a large bowl of mashed potatoes, smaller bowls with apple sauce and cranberry sauce, a bowl of green beans, a gravy boat and a large salad took up much of the table.

"Pork chops." Jax grinned. "You remembered they're my favorite, Mom."

“Of course, I did.” Katy smiled and invited the boys to sit down. "What would you like to drink? I have beer, wine, soda, milk, ice water, iced tea, or I can make hot tea or coffee," she offered.

Dean and Griff sat at the table while Jax went to help his mom with the drinks. "Iced tea is good for me, Mom."
Katy went up on tip toe to give her son a grateful kiss on the cheek.  She handed him the gallon of homemade iced tea to bring to the table.  She brought a bottle of wine and a corkscrew as well.  "Griff? Dean? What would you like to drink? I can even make hot cocoa if you like, it's no trouble."

"Iced tea will be great, Katy," Dean answered while reaching for the bottle to open it for the woman.  He popped the cork and set the bottle back down near her plate.

Griff nodded.  “Iced tea for me too please.”

"Come on Mom, sit down with us," Jax said.  He remembered all those times she stood waiting to get whatever her husband demanded next.

She smiled broadly and sat down with the boys.  "Go ahead, dig in guys! I hope you're hungry," she said as she picked up the bottle and poured herself a glass of wine. She waited for them to serve themselves before she took some for herself.

 The three men did just as she said and dug in.  No words were spoken until Dean blurted out, "This is fantastic, Katy."

Griff nodded in agreement his mouth too full to talk.

"Yeah, Mom," Jax agreed.  "Can I have the recipe for Heath?"

The woman blushed, pleased at the compliment. She'd forgotten how Jax’s father had treated her before they had divorced and only remembered what it had been like while she'd been married to Gene.  She loved the fact that the boys were all eating with gusto.  Her smile faltered just a bit at the mention of someone named Heath and she took a sip of wine before regaining her composure.  "Is Heath... one... of your partners?"

Jax nearly choked on his pork chop.  Griff patted him on the back and Dean handed him his iced tea.  Finally looking at his mother Jax answered, "Yes, he is Mom.  And James is my other partner.  I'd love for you to meet them sometime."

"Heath.  And James," she said hesitantly. "I... honey... how..." she took another sip of her wine and tried to gather her thoughts. She liked to think of herself as an open-minded person.  She knew her son was gay but the image of him with two other men caused a flush to her skin that had nothing to do with the wine. She put it aside and swallowed nervously.  "I... I'd like to meet them... someday. I just need to..." she hesitated. Then coming to a decision, she said, "It doesn't matter, honey. All I know is that you're happy. Happier than I've seen you for a long time, and if Heath... and James can make you smile like that, then it's worth it."

Katy bit the inside of her lower lip after she'd spoken those words.  She was trying to be supportive but she was having a hard time convincing herself of her own words. To hide her concerns she took another sip of her wine and concentrated on her own dinner.

Jax breathed a sigh of relief.  "I'm glad you feel that way, Mom, because I love my guys and they love me.  You could say they saved me after I left here."

"Tell me about them," she invited, trying to ignore the feelings of fear and concern that gnawed at her stomach.

Jax didn't know how much to tell her.  He didn't want to hurt the resort in any way. "Heath is a doctor, Mom.  He’s tall and…handsome… and James, well, James is James.  He’s like Heath, in the height department.  James was in the Marines. They're both older than me but they treat me as an equal."

Katy noticed that her son was unable to make complete eye contact. A sure sign that he was holding something back, but she was afraid to pursue the matter for the time being. She felt like she was finally beginning to connect with him and she didn't want to lose him a third time. "A doctor and a Marine. That's nice," she smiled. “How did they save you?”

“After I left here…home…I traveled the back country.  The canoe I took floundered and I ended up in the water.  Heath found me after I made it to shore. He got me back to the res…to his clinic and patched me up.  Between him and James caring for me we just fell in love.  They asked me to become their partner.”

"I'd like to meet your... partners. Would you like to bring them here sometime?”

"I'd love for us to get together,” Jax said.  "Let me talk to the guys and see what they say."

After dinner Jax crawled under the kitchen sink trying to find the problem.  Once he turned the water back on it was easy to spot the leak where one of the compression fittings had loosened up.  He carefully tightened the nut until the drops of water stopped.  When he stood back up he told his mom, “There you go, Mom.  I’ll bring a piece of plywood over tomorrow before we leave and replace that warped one.”

“Oh, thank you, Hon,” she said giving Jax a hug.  “Are you sure you'll have the time to do that though?”

“I’ll make sure we have the time, Katy,” Dean assured her before Jax could answer.  “We should be done with the conversion by noon.  It went faster because I have Griff and your son with me.  So, we’ll stop by on our way out of town.”

“Thank you, Dean,” Kathy said.  “Why don’t you three plan on having lunch here?”

Dean looked to his two young friends to see if they had any objections.  When they both nodded, he told Jax’s mom, “We’d love to have lunch with you, Katy.”

“Great,” this woman who was only a few years older than Dean said.  “I’ll have everything ready when you get here so you don’t get home too late.”

“Speaking of being late,” Jax said, “we need to get back to the project so I can call my guys.”

Griff flushed then told their host, “Thank you for the delicious dinner, Mrs…. um… Katy.”

“You’re welcome, Griff,” Katy said as she pulled the tall man to her for a hug. 

Dean smiled as the young man colored nicely.  When Katy finally released Griff, he stepped in for a similar hug.  “Thanks for a wonderful evening.”

“My pleasure.  And thank you for bringing my boy back to me.”

“Bye, Mom,” Jax said slipping in to get his hug too.  “We’ll be back around noon tomorrow.”

The three men grabbed their jackets and walked out to Dean’s truck.  Katy watched them back out of the driveway from the porch.  After a few minutes, she walked back into her home hardly believing the miracle the morning had brought to her.

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