When the best part of me was always you
Erica called and told me that Pat was going to Vancouver and I booked the first flight to Buffalo. I had agreed to go watch the house while the family was in Vancouver. They were leaving in a few days. It was Valentine’s Day and I was miserable than ever.
Jon had flowers delivered to the house and part of me was hoping maybe Pat would have flowers delivered for me.
“Ally,” Erica said calling upstairs, “We’re leaving come secure the alarm.”
“I’m coming,” I said walking out of my room and finishing my text message to Alyssa who was in Vancouver already with the boys.
“Make sure you lock up at night and sleep with the gun in your room,” Donna said, “Even though Jason is in jail, I don’t trust him as far as I can throw him.”
“I’ll be fine,” I replied smiling, “I’ll see you guys soon.”
“If you need anything call the Jones’ next door or the Smiths across the street,” Donna said writing their numbers down on paper, “I really hope you come to Vancouver soon.”
“I’m going to try and get out of work down in Florida and then I will be up if I can,” I lied.
“Alright,” Donna said as she hugged me goodbye and told me she’d call me soon.
“Ally, please come to Vancouver,” Erica said being the last one out of the house, “It would mean a lot to not only Pat but Jon, Duncan, and Brent.”
“I miss him Erica,” I said finally breaking down and she wrapped her arms around me just letting me cry.
“He’s a mess,” Erica replied, “I’ve never seen my brother this in love with someone before. He’s an emotional wreck.”
“Do you think he cheated,” I asked.
“ERICA LET’S GO WE’RE GOING TO MISS THE PLANE,” Jackie shouted out of the window.
“My brother is not the type that would cheat, Ally you saw how in love with you he was. He proposed to you for God’s sake.”
“I need to talk to him, I’ll see you at the gold medal game,” I said giving her a hug and she walked out of the door and I secured the alarm and went upstairs pulling out my cell phone to call Steeger.
“Hello,” he said groggily as he answered the phone.
“Did I wake you,” I asked.
“Who the hell is this?”
“Ally,” I replied laughing.
“Oh hey,” he coughed, “Sorry, I thought some psycho fan got my number.”
“Nope it’s my new number,” I said, “Hey can I ask you something and I want you to be completely honest with me.”
“Is it about the pictures in the limo with John and Pat?”
“How’d you know,” I asked.
“I figured you would call me sooner or later and ask me about this,” he said, “Pat pretty much said you flipped your can and he cussed me out for taking that picture. He didn’t touch any of them Ally, in fact he wanted to get out of the limo and John wouldn’t let him.”
“Why was he shirtless then,” I asked.
“He left his shirt in the bathroom at the bar after I spilled a drink on him,” Kris said, “He had no choice but to get into the limo shirtless.”
“I feel like such a bitch,” I sighed, “Thanks so much for getting to the bottom of it.”
“Anytime,” he replied, “Too bad you weren’t here in Alberta, there’s karaoke at the bar down the street from my mom’s house.”
“We’ll have a karaoke night soon, I promise,” I said laughing, “Hey I have to finish cleaning the house before I start packing to head home so I’ll see you soon.”
“Bye Ally,” he said hanging up the phone.
“Bye Kris,” I said setting the phone down when there was a knock at the door.
I looked out the window and saw a flower delivery truck, “Hi are you Ally,” the teenage boy asked as he handed me the bouquet of peach roses and I immediately knew who sent them.
“Yes I am,” I replied taking the basket from him.
“Have a great day ma’am,” he said walking down the driveway to his car and I shut the door behind me walking into the kitchen and setting the flowers on the table. I pulled the card out from the bouquet and I read it immediately tearing up.
It’s our first Valentine’s Day without each other in I don’t know how long. It’s not easy for me not being able to hold or kiss you. I miss you so much
it hurts. I just wish you would give me another chance. We’ve been through so much together and we can’t just live the rest of our lives acting like we don’t know each other. Inside the envelope there is a plane ticket and a ticket to the gold medal game just in case we make it. Please come if you can, it would really mean a lot to me having you there if we won. We all make mistakes and I promise this will be my last if you give me another chance. I love you so much Ally, I don’t want anybody else but you.
I wiped the tears from my eyes and pulled both the plane and game ticket out of the envelope. When the games started I was glued to the TV, Pat was a goalie killer. I knew he was an amazing hockey player but playing for the Hawks, he hardly got any of the spotlight since they had many young stars but the Olympics were definitely his time to shine.
Pat and Team USA made it to the gold medal round and were facing Jonny, Brent, and Duncan. I was definitely interested to see them face each other when they are used to playing with each other and not against one another.
I threw the last bit of my clothes in the suitcase when the taxi honked outside the house. I grabbed my bags and plane ticket and headed outside.
“Where to Miss,” the driver asked.
“Greater Buffalo International,” I replied and he turned on the meter and we headed for the airport.
I arrived in Vancouver after the six hour plane ride and I checked in at the family lodge under an alias that Donna had given them so in case Pat asked, he wouldn’t know I was there.
Zach Parise tied the game and it headed into overtime where Sidney Crosby scored the game winning goal and Canada the win. Pat looked disappointed and I just wanted to run down on the ice and tell him that I loved him just to see him smile again but I couldn’t until after the game in the hallway. I headed down the arena hallway towards the family area. I flashed the guard my pass and he lifted the rope so I could head down.
“Tazer,” I screamed to my opponent, best friend, and linemate back in Chicago.
“What’s up Kaner,” he said pounding his fist against mine during the warm-ups.
“She’s not here,” I said sighing. I was so sick of trying to win her back, I loved Ally with all of my heart and wanted her back in my life but she pushed me further and further away and I reached my breaking point.
“Erica said that she talked to Ally and she said she was coming but I don’t know,” Jon replied, “Maybe she’s running late.”
I sighed and Jon patted me on my shoulder, “She doesn’t want me anymore,” I replied, “I tried everything to win her back and she wants nothing to do with me.”
I looked up into the stands before I took the faceoff and I saw Ally nowhere in sight. I felt my heart break knowing she wasn’t there and I was off my game. I watched as my team battled back and forth with the Canadians. Overtime, great, fifteen more minutes of intermission which means fifteen more minutes of me spacing out thinking about the one girl who ripped my heart right out of my chest and stomped all over it.
“Come on Kane, we’re five minutes away from winning gold for our country snap out of it,” Team USA defenseman Ryan Whitney said to me.
I could have killed him right then and there. His cocky attitude made me want to pounce on him and kick his ass but team USA hockey stuck together and we had a game and a medal to win to make our nation proud.
We skated out on the ice fist pumping Jamie as we headed out to achieve one of the two dreams that hockey players dream of. We dream of winning a gold medal for our country and the Stanley Cup. I looked up into the stands again where my family was and her seat was empty.
“Fuck,” I shouted and Jon looked at me from across the ice and gave me a slight smile.
I felt the chunks rise in my throat and the tears build up in my eyes as Sidney Crosby scored the goal. Everything we worked for flushed down the toilet on a fluke goal. I could have killed myself right then and there. I was happy for Jon, Brent, and Duncan since they’re my friends and my teammates back in Chicago but I was feeling sorry for my team and myself. Thank God Ally didn’t come to see me disappointed I guess but FUCK! Ally, there she is again in my mind. Why can’t she go away? I want her in my arms again, I’m definitely heading to Buffalo after we leave here tonight to see her. I looked at the silver medal around my neck and went down the runway to the dressing room in disappointment not only because I won a silver medal but because the one person more important than any award I ever won wasn’t here.
I bought Pat’s USA jersey in the Olympic apparel store and sat in a vacant seat away from the Kane family. I blended in with the crowd of USA fans in the section where I was sitting. The little girl behind me was freaking out over Pat and I did have to laugh. This is what I went through at Hawks games and nothing was really new here even in Canada with him playing for Team USA. I watched in disappointment as Crosby, I think that’s the kid’s name for Canada that scored the game winning goal. Pat looked like he could kill someone right now and I couldn’t help but feel like I had something to do with that.
In fact, I know I did. Every time he looked to the section where his family was sitting he would look down and shake his head.
I walked down the hallway to the direction of the team USA locker room and there he was standing outside talking to the media. I noticed Sarah Spain from Chicago, she was a nice girl, some may even say they wanted her job. I know for sure many girls wanted her job because she got to interview all of the guys after games and what not.
I waited in the side hallway where Pat couldn’t see me when the crowd of reporters walked away. I walked around the corner and when I saw that he was about to open the door to the locker room, I yelled his name.
He stopped dead in his tracks and turned around looking directly at me. I speed walked towards him and wrapped my arms around him. I was disappointed when he didn’t hug me back. I did the one thing I’ve been dying to do for six months, I leaned up and kissed his lips but he just stood there.
“Why would you do that if you don’t mean it,” he asked, “If you’re here to yell at me and tell me what a jackass I am then you can go back home to wherever you’ve been the past five months and stay there.”
“I came six hours from Buffalo to tell you that I love you and that I can’t live without you and you stand here and mistreat me. Pat you and I both know that we are miserable without each other. This is the last thing I want to do after you just lost one thing that you have worked your whole career for.”
“How do I know you aren’t down here telling me this just to make me feel better about myself, Ally?”
“I fucking kissed you,” I snapped.
“Ally, I just did something I’m good at. I fucking won at losing. It’s what I always do. I didn’t win what I worked so hard for within the past two weeks and this past summer and I don’t have you anymore. I fucking win at losing, if that’s what winning is then I want no parts of it.”
I stood there not saying a word and he sighed and went to open the locker room door when I grabbed his hand and shoved him against the wall in a secluded hallway full of equipment and the zambonis.
“Listen here,” I started, “I’m not here to fight with your ass. If I was here to fight with you, I wouldn’t have kissed you or tried to hug you. You’re mad at yourself for losing right now and you have no reason to be ashamed of winning a silver medal. A medal in the Olympics is a medal Pat, some guys don’t get medals at all.”
He let his eyes wonder to the floor and I didn’t know what to do. It was almost as if the person around the corner was reading our minds when their cell phone rang.
What am I supposed to do when the best part of me was always
What am I supposed to say when I’m all choked up that you’re okay
I’m falling to pieces one’s still in love but the other’s leaving
Pat looked up and met my eyes. Neither one of us noticed Donna and Pat Sr. standing there as we both walked towards each other and got lost in our own little world as our lips meant for the first time in six months. I felt like I was back in Buffalo at the airport all over again.
I felt his tears fall on my forehead and I couldn’t help but let mine fall and I felt them fall on his medal. Both of us pulled away and held onto each other as if our lives depended on it.
“I’m sorry,” Pat spoke up finally breaking the silence.
“I’m sorry too,” I replied, “I never should have assumed something without going to Kris or John.”
“I didn’t touch those girls,” he said.
“I know, I talked to Kris before I came out here,” I said as I wrapped my arms around his waist.
“I love you so much Ally,” he whispered against my lips before he kissed me again.
“I love you too, more than you could ever know and I was so stubborn the past six months. I’m sorry about being a bitch at the wedding,” I said, “I wanted to dance with you so bad but I couldn’t bring myself to do it. Your face when I gave the flowers back to you and then your face when you asked me to dance has haunted me every day for the past month.”
“Let’s start over,” he replied, “Let’s forget about the past and start brand new here today.”
“Okay,” I said smiling and he smiled for the first time that day.
“Jon rented a cabin here in Vancouver as a late Valentine’s Day date for Erica, I rented one too just to be by myself for a little while but since you’re here, will you be my Valentine,” he asked and I couldn’t help but smile at how shy he was acting. It was like he didn’t know me and was asking me out for the first time.
“I don’t know if my boyfriend would approve,” I joked.
“Very funny,” he replied and I reached into my purse pulling out the gift that I had bought for him.
“Here,” I said handing him the box.
“What is it?”
“Just open it.”
Pat opened the box and saw the shiny silver dog tag with the cross staring back at him.
“Ally, I love it,” he said as he took it out of the box and put it over his head.
“Did you read it,” I asked.
“No,” he replied moving the cross out of the way so he could read it.
“I couldn’t think of anything else to put on it,” I said biting my lip and he smiled as he finished reading the engraving.
“You used the lyrics from our song,” he said smiling.
“It’s undesirable for us to be apart, I never would have made it very far because you got the keys to my heart 9/3/07,” I said reading the dog tag on his neck.
“By the way you look great in my jersey,” he said smiling.
“Thank you,” I said twirling around, “I wanted to fit in with at least half of the crowd without you seeing me.
“It sure as hell worked,” he said taking my hand in his, “Come on let’s get out of here.”
“You have to shower and changed first,” I replied.
“I forgot I was in my gear,” he replied.
“You look hot though all sweaty with your medal on your neck though,” I pouted.
“The faster we get out of here the quicker we can get to the cabin,” he said and we walked down the hall hand in hand.
“There they are,” I heard Erica whisper.
“They’re holding hands,” Jon whispered to Donna who turned around and smiled at us.
“It’s about time,” Jessica said smiling, “I got sick of seeing you two fight with each other.”
“I missed having Ally around,” Jackie said and I smiled hugging the Kane family and whispering ‘Congratulations’ to Jonny so Pat didn’t hear me.
“We’re going to head out,” Erica said to myself and her family, “It’s been a long day and we’re both hungry and tired.”
“Alright see you later honey,” Donna said hugging her daughter, “I love you.”
“I love you too mom,” she said before hugging Pat and her dad.
“Do they know about the cabin,” I whispered to Pat who shook his head no.
“Yep,” he said smiling, “They don’t know we’re going yet though.”
“Go shower,” I said, “I’ll be out here waiting.”
He gave me a kiss and I sat down on the chair outside the locker room. I’m pretty sure Pat was the only guy left from Team USA since no other families were in the hallways waiting. It was just me, Donna, Jessica, Jackie, and Pat Sr.
When we left the arena we headed to a cabin that over looked the city of Vancouver. I loved the view and the lights from the city were beautiful at night. Pat hadn’t stopped smiling since we left the arena and I couldn’t help but smile myself.
I finally had him back in my life. Both of us agreed that I wouldn’t wear my engagement ring again until he asked me to marry him again. We agreed that we would start our relationship fresh and not rush things like we both felt we did the first time around.
I stripped out of my clothes while Pat went to the store down the street from the cabin to grab a few things he said he needed. I didn’t bother to argue with him.
I closed my eyes as the hot water soaked into my body and I felt at peace for the first time in a long time. When I got out of the bathtub I put my robe on and walked out into the bedroom where I saw Pat lighting the last of the candles on the mantle.
“Pat,” I said in amazement, “You didn’t have to do this.”
“I know I didn’t but I wanted to,” he said coming over to me and giving me a kiss.
“I don’t know what to say.”
“Don’t say anything,” he replied, “You coming here to Vancouver was enough.”
“I love you,” I said giving him a kiss.
“I love you too,” he replied kissing me back and it felt right. I knew we were going to be okay.
We both walked out into the living room of the cabin and sat down on the couch watching a re-run of some stupid TV show that was on. We started making out and Pat undid the tie on my robe and slid it off of my shoulders.
“Not here,” he whispered against my lips when I went to undo his pants.
“Why not,” I asked as he picked me up off of the couch and carried me into the bedroom and laid me down on the bed yanking his shirt over his head before he removed his pants.
“God I’ve missed you,” he whispered into my neck.
“Make love to me Pat.”
“I thought you’d never ask,” he said entering me. I screamed out in ecstasy as he began thrusting in and out.
I’ve never felt anything like how I felt the moment he started thrusting inside of me. Out of all the times we had sex, this was the best time. I guess it was the six months without each other that caused us both to feel relieved as he made love until the sun came up.
I walked into the cabin and gasped in shock at what Jon had done for me. There were candles all over the place and rose petals all over the floor.
“Jon,” I said and he smiled.
“My mom set this up before the game,” he replied giving me a kiss.
“I don’t know what to say,” I said.
“Don’t say anything just go put on your bathing suit and meet me in the jacuzzi.”
I walked into the bathroom and stripped out of the clothes that I had been wearing all day into the black bikini that was sitting on the sink for me.
I walked outside into the cold Vancouver air and I couldn’t help but shiver as the cold air hit me.
“You wouldn’t shiver so much if you got into the water,” Jon whispered from behind me.
“Sorry,” I said and he laughed as we got into the hot tub. There were even rose petals in the hot tub with candles outlining the edge. I climbed in as he helped me down the small step by holding my hand. The hot water felt good against my cold skin and I leaned my head back against the jets that were coming out of the water.
I felt my eyes get heavy but what good would I be to Jon tonight if I fell asleep after all of this hard work. I felt the water get higher and when I opened my eyes Jon was in front of me.
Before I could speak his lips were on my own and I wrapped my arms around his waist as he picked me up so that he could sit and I was straddling his waist. The next thing I knew my bikini top was over my head and he was running his hands up my back.
“I love you Erica,” he said as he untied my bottoms.
“I love you too Jonny,” I replied. Only I was allowed to call him Jonny, if anyone else called him that, he hated it.
I reached into the water and slid his swimming trunks down his legs and put them on the ledge behind him.
“Maybe we shouldn’t without a condom,” he whispered.
“I’m on the pill, remember,” I said and he reached down into the water so he could enter me.
I couldn’t help but feel complete as he came inside of me. I definitely knew Jonny was the one for me. I loved everything about him: the way he treated me like a princess, how he blushed when I kissed him in public, and just how he made me feel like I was the only girl in the world.
“I love you,” he said giving me a kiss as we both lie in bed that night.
“I love you too, Jonny,” I replied kissing him back before we both drifted off to sleep.
I lied in bed with Ally, my head on her stomach with her running her hands through my hair. I never thought we’d be together like this again but here we were. Of course, my team lost at the Olympics but I won that day when she forgave me for everything.
“What are you thinking about,” she asked and I looked up at her smiling.
“You,” I replied giving her a kiss.
“What would you say about me coming home,” she asked.
“Ally, you are home,” I said, “You’re here with me.”
“I meant coming back home to our house in Chicago,” she replied and I smiled. I felt like I was on top of the world. No gold medal could ever be good enough for me when I had Ally here in my arms ready to come home to where she belonged.
“I would like that,” I said, “I hate coming home to an empty house.”
“I hate living without you, period,” she said as she ran her hands through my hair again, “I love you Pat.”
“I love you too, Ally,” I replied as we both shut our eyes and faded off to sleep in each other’s arms.