||[Mar. 21st, 2015|09:14 pm]
Title: Remember Me?|
Author: Jackson K.
Summary: Someone from Don's past wreaks havoc just to get his attention.
Warning(s): Implied non-con, violence, character death (minor)
January 25th started out like any other day in the Flack household. While Don and Danny were getting ready, Jackson got breakfast ready. The three men ate and Jackson got ready to go to his shop. Before Don left he commented on Jackson's choice of footwear.....
“Really, babe, red sneakers?”
“I happen to like them. Besides, when you start buying my shoes you can poke fun all you want!”
Don laughed, leaned down and kissed his husband, and said he would see him later. Danny ran up for a quick kiss and then the guys headed out the door. Jackson was gathering some paperwork he needed for the shop, and just when he was getting ready to leave the doorbell rang. He walked over and looked through the spy hole. Just as he was about to ask who was there, the door was kicked in, and before he could really react, two men burst into the room and tried to grab him. He tried to fight them off and get to the bedroom where his pistol was, but he wasn't that lucky because just as he reached the hallway, one of the guys tackled him from behind. He kicked at and tried to punch his attacker, but the other guy slipped in and covered his mouth and nose with a damp cloth.
When Jackson came to, he had a headache and his ribs hurt. He knew he was in a moving car, but wasn't sure how long they'd been on the move or where they were because he was blind-folded. The car stopped and someone was pulling him out of the back seat. In the process, his cell phone fell out of his pocket. When the man who was pulling him from the car saw it, he stomped it with his boot. That earned Jackson a sock in the jaw hard enough to loosen a few teeth. He was shoved into another car and told to stay down until they got to where they were going. Jackson's mind was racing, thinking of so many things Don had told him to do in case something like this ever happened. He knew to take in as many details as possible, but he was stymied because of the blindfold. Soon after the car stopped and Jackson was dragged out a second time, and he had a better of idea where he was. He smelled water, and assumed he was near the river. He was man-handled into a small shed and the door was slammed and locked.
Jackson tried to stay calm and take stock of his surroundings. He could hear water lapping against the back of the building he was in, and knew for sure that he was near the river. Trouble was, he didn't know which one. He was trying to keep it together, but when he thought of Don and Danny, he couldn't help but cry. He tried to remember if he'd told the two of them that he loved them before they left that morning. He sure hoped so because he had no clue when he'd have the chance to do so.....
Don was at his desk trying to get some paperwork done, but he couldn't seem to concentrate. He had that nagging feeling that something was wrong. He called Danny to touch base and ask if he'd heard from Jackson. Danny replied that he hadn't, and after that he decided to call Jackson. He got no answer at the shop, nor on the cell. That bothered him, but before he could get too wound up, he got a call about a suspect that he needed to check on. When he got back to the precinct, he called Lisa back and asked if she'd heard from Jackson. She said she hadn't but if she did, she would let Don know immediately. Don didn't get a chance to worry much because he caught a break in a major case and had to move immediately.
Later that afternoon, Don was finishing up paperwok when Danny showed up at his desk. He asked Don if he was ready to go, and Don replied that he needed five more minutes. When he was done, he and Danny left the precinct. Danny asked if Don had ever gotten in touch with Jackson and Don said he hadn't. When they arrived at their apartment both men knew something was bad wrong. Danny immediately called for back-up and the two men waited until officers arrived on scene. Mac Taylor heard the call and recognized the address. He hurried over immediately to see if he could be of any assistance.
Don noticed the broken door, and when he and Danny entered the apartment, Don could tell that whatever happened, Jackson put up one hell of a fight. Furniture was overturned, lamps were broken, and papers from Jackson's work bag were scattered everywhere. Danny started down the hall when he saw an indentation in the plaster with blood and hair in it. He showed this to Don and Mac then continued down to the bedroom. Nothing had been disturbed, and everything was in its' place. Mac told the guys he would have a team come in to process and when Danny offered to help, Mac told him that he couldn't work the case because he was too close to it to be completely objective. That pissed Danny off, and it cost Don more than a little effort to calm the man down.
Danny apologized to Mac and Don asked what they should do next. Mac asked about Jackson's phone. Danny said that he carried it with him all the time and Don explained that he'd been trying to call it off and on during the afternoon. Mac called Adam at the lab and had him try tracking the phone through GPS. Just as he was finishing his call with Adam, one of the uniforms came in carrying an evidence bag. When asked, he explained that the red shoe was found near the storm drain on the corner. Don felt his anger begin to rise when he saw the shoe. He identified it as the one Jackson was wearing when Don saw him that morning. He went on to say that Jackson had been wearing a pair of faded jeans and a red and white striped t-shirt. About that time Don's cell chirped. He fished it out of his pocket and frowned when he saw “unknown caller”. He pushed a few buttons and tersly barked; “Flack.....”
“Well well, if it isn't the star of my hottest fantasies!”
“Who the fuck is this?”
“Come now, Don.... that's no way to talk to an old friend, is it?”
“What do you mean?”
“Really, Flick-Flack, you really don't rememeber who this is?”
Don felt a cold chill run down his spine at the caller use of a nickname he'd never hoped to hear ever again.......
“Very good! You do remember me......”
“Seems you've lost something......all the cops and all......”
“Where are you?”
“Someplace safe...... by the way, in case you're wondering, Jackson's fine for now. He and I are going to get better acquainted real soon......”
“Goddamn you, Jaden Ross.... you best not lay a finger on him, or so help me God, I will tear your head off with my bare hands!”
“Such a bad ass! That use to really get me hot back in the day..... remember?”
Don was about to reply when the phone clicked in his ear. He slammed his phone to the table in frustration. Danny asked what was going on, and Don explained that he had an idea who had taken Jackson. The two walked over to where Mac was talking to Adam on the phone regarding Jackson's cell. Adam explained that phone had pinged off a tower near the East River at exactly 10 a.m. He went on to say that the phone was either off or something had happened to it becaue there was nothing after that. Mac thanked him and ended the call. He explained to Don and Danny about Jackson's phone and Don told Mac about the phone call he had just received from Jaden Ross.
Mac asked Don to explain who Jaden Ross was, and Don told him that Jaden was the younger brother of James Ross, a guy that Don had sent to prison. He and James had been friends in high school, and Jaden had tagged along with them because he had a crush on Don. After Don became a cop, he had arrested James and testified in his murder case. Don stated that he had no contact with Jaden after the trial, and the phone call was the first time he'd heard from him. Mac called Adam, asked him to run Jaden Ross's name through the database, and to call him if he got something. He then told Don that he and Danny should try and get some rest and to stay be the phone in case Jackson called.
Meanwhile, Jackson was trying to find a way out of the shed he was locked in. He'd managed to find a jagged piece of tin on one of the shed's walls, and had ever so carefully cut the rope to free his hands. After that, he untied his legs and had been kicking at the door and banging on the wall in hopes that someone would hear him. He'd screamed himself hoarse and would have given almost anything for a drink of water. He was trying not to panic because he knew it wouldn't do any good. He thought about Don and Danny and that made him sad. They must be out of their minds by now with worry. He took comfort in the fact that they would do their best to try and find him. He just hoped they were able to soon.
Jaden Ross was pissed, but knew he really shouldn't be. It was just like Don to be shitty to him, just like the old days. This time, though, he had the upper hand. He had Jackson, and that was as good as money in the bank. He knew there was nothing Don wouldn't for Jackson's safe return, and he planned to take full advantage of that fact. He had a few thing in mind, but the most important thing at the moment was figuring out the best way to take care of Jackson. He knew he could count on Spike and Daryl because they had managed to grab the prize, and Jaden knew for a fact that Spike wanted a go at Jackson. There would be time for that later.
After Mac and his team left, Don and Danny tried to eat but neither were very hungry. Instead, they tried to figure out what Jaden Ross's angle was. Don explained that Jaden's brother James and he were good friends. They hung out together sometimes and Jaden was always around flirting with Don every time James wasn't looking. Don said he finally had to have a talk with Jaden, and that Jaden hadn't taken it very well. Don didn't hang out with James much after that, and they'd lost touch. After high school, Don joined the academy. Shortly after Don became a patrolman, he and his partner responded to a call about a robbery at a liquor store. When they arrived, the robber was exiting the store with the owner chasing him. Don recognized the robber as James Ross. Before he could do anything, James shot the guy in the head. Don's partner cuffed him and put him in the back of the squad car while waiting for the sargeant to arrive. Long story short: Don had to testify and James Ross went to prison. Don said he thought he was done with the Ross brothers until Jaden called earlier. Soon after, Danny said he was going to bed. Don told him that he would be in soon and kissed Danny goodnight. Don knew he wouldn't be getting much sleep because he was worried about Jackson. He hoped he was alright because Don knew he couldn't stand it if he lost his baby.
Jackson sat on the floor of the shed trying to keep it together. He was pissed, confused, scared, and kept thinking of staying in control. When he heard a car pull up outside, he scrambled behind the door hoping whoever came was alone. When Jaden told Spike to tune Jackson up a bit, he jumped at the chance because he had a few other things in mind for the little guy. He was so caught up in what he wanted to do that he didn't see Jackson slam the door into him and run out of the shed. By the time Spike realized what had happened, Jackson had locked himself inside the car and was frantically looking for the keys. He found Spike's phone and dialed Don's number, but before the call could be connected, Spike had the door open and was dragging Jackson out of the car. Jackson began kicking and trying to get away, but Spike was having none of it. He punched Jackson in the jaw hard enough to knock him out cold. He dragged him back into the shed and his idea of fun began..........
When Jackson came to, he hurt all over. His jaw was sore, he had cuts all over his hands and arms, and his clothes were in tatters. He felt shame when he remembered what Spike had done to him, but he told himself that he was just trying to stay alive. He'd do anything to be able to see Don and Danny again. Just the thought of his guys brought tears, and Jackson let them flow, hoping he might feel better. As he was getting himself together, he heard a car pull up outside. He prayed that it wasn't Spike coming back because he didn't think he could stand any more. When the door of the shed opened, Jackson looked up and was confused because he didn't recognize the man in the doorway.
Don felt like he was slowly losing his mind. Even though Mac had taken he and Danny off the case, he was doing his own investigation and it was going nowhere fast. He'd checked into Jaden Ross's background and found nothing. All he knew was that Jaden was independently wealthy from selling some programs he'd written to a big-time software outfit. He was brought back to reality when Det. Ackerman told him he had a delivery to sign for downstairs. Don knew he hadn't ordered anything so he called Mac and asked him to come to the precinct. When Mac arrived, Don signed for the package and opened it. When he saw the contents, he felt like someone had knocked the breath out of him. Inside was the red and white shirt Jackson was wearing the last time Don saw him, and it was bloody. Don and Mac went back to the lab so Don could tell Danny and Mac could get started processing the shirt and the box that it came in.
Don and Danny sat in Mac's office waiting for the results. Danny had been quiet, and had been trying to be hopeful. He was so afraid that Jackson might be dead, and that thought brought so much pain to Danny's heart and soul. He loved the little guy so much that the thought of his being hurt brought tears to Danny's eyes. Don kept turning the whole thing over in his mind. He was also concerned about Danny because he knew how close he was to Jackson. Don reached over and took Danny's hand saying; “We're gonna get him back.....” Mac came in and told them what they'd already guessed. The blood on the shirt belonged only to Jackson. Danny went back to his office and Don headed back to the precinct.
The next few days dragged on. Don was hoping for another phone call from Jaden, but none came. Officers were shown a photo of Jaden and were told to approach with extreme caution. Don went so far as to park near Jaden's house, but he didn't see anyone come or go. Later that evening, he and Danny were arguing over how there had been no progress on finding Jackson when Danny turned to Don and said; “Maybe more progress would have been made if you hadn't caught an attitude with Jaden Ross the first time he made contact.....”
“What did you just say, Messer?”
“You heard me loud and clear! That shitty, superior attitude you get when something annoys or pisses you off may have cost us Jackson!”
“You son of a bitch! You take that back!!!!!”
“Fuck you, Don....”
That's all Danny got out before Don punched him in the face. The two men squared off and the battle began. Danny landed several punches to Don's face and torso while Don caught Danny in the eye and jaw. Don finally shoved Danny away from him and Danny fell backwards onto the sofa. Danny tried to stand and suddenly found himself catching Don as he fell. He kept hitting Danny in the back, but the blows began to get weaker and Danny could tell by the hitch in Don's breathing that he was crying. With tears in his own eyes, Danny held Don as he cried and tried to apologize. Danny told him to get it all out and said;”It's okay, big man, I've got you.....”
Jackson heard footsteps coming down the hall and the fear began to come back. He was wondering if it was the man who had taken him from the shed. Jason? Jared? Jaden? That was it! He said his name was Jaden. He'd been nice enough to allow Jackson to bathe and had given him some sweats to put on. He had apologized for the vile things that Spike had done, and promised that it wouldn't happen again. Jaden had brought a doctor to treat his wounds, and Jackson was embarassed but let the doctor examine him anyway. All Jackson knew for sure was that he was ready for this nightmare to end. He didn't know why this was happening, but he wanted it to be over. When the door opened, Jackson could see that it was Jaden coming back and he relaxed a bit. Jaden asked if he was hungry and Jackson told him that he wasn't. He asked if he could have some water and Jaden brought some to him.
After Jaden had locked Jackson in for the night, he went to his own bedroom and took a box down from the closet shelf. He opened the box and took out an envelope stuffed with photos. He began looking through them and smiled as he saw photos of he and Don and James. He stopped when he came to his favorite. It was a photo of him and Don that James had taken at Coney Island. They were standing on the boardwalk and Don had his arm around Jaden's shoulder. The photo made him sad because this is the way it should have been now. Not Don with Jackson. Jaden knew if he could just get Don to listen to reason then he would change his mind. He made plans for the next morning to call Don and turn things up a notch.....
The next morning found Don and Danny talking things over. Don apologized again for getting physical with Danny, but Danny told him it wasn't necessary. He went on to say that he knew it was the frustration and fear. Don thanked him for understanding and was about to suggest they have breakfast when Don's cell rang. Don saw “unknown caller” on the display and answered immediately.....
“Good morning, Flick-Flack!”
“We need to talk.....”
“We do..... where is Jackson?”
“I don't want to talk about him right now..... I want to talk about us.”
“Jaden, there is no “us”, and there never was. Why do you keep insisting there is an “us”?
“Because it's what I want, and it's what was meant to be!”
“I don't understand, Jaden..... I never led you on, or promised you anything.....”
“It doesn't matter.... it's what I want, and I'm gonna have it. Nobody's gonna stand in my way!”
“You have Jackson?”
“I have the nasty little bitch.....”
“Jaden, please let me talk to him.....”
Don heard the phone drop and shuffling in the background. He heard the phone picked up and Jaden told him to make it quick.....
Don was appaled at Jackson's voice. He was so hoarse that Don could barely understand him.....
“It's me, baby.....”
“Donnie, do something for me.....”
“Name it, baby.....”
“Go visit Saunder's Ferry Lane for me.....”
Don heard the phone drop again and then he heard Jackson screaming in the background and the sound chilled him to the bone. Jaden came back to the phone and asked Don if he was ready to make a deal. Don told him to call him back in 15 minutes with the details. He stepped over to the stereo cabinet and started looking through Jackson's old vinyl records. Danny was helping him and found the record they were looking for. Don put the record on and they listened all the way through twice. When the record player stopped, Don looked at Danny and said;”I don't get it.....”
“I do..... it's a clue to where Jaden's keeping him.....”
“How did you get that out of an old song?”
“The first and last lines with the numbers, and part of the title..... 66 and 32, or some combination thereof, and there's only one Ferry Lane that I know of and it's off the Parkway headed to the Staten Island Ferry.....”
“We need to get in touch with Mac after Jaden calls me back.....”
Just then, Don's cell chirped. He knew it would be Jaden. He pressed the button and instead of a greeting, he could hear Jackson still screaming in the background......
“Jaden, what the FUCK is going on?”
“That's just Spike trying to keep Jackson in line...... are you ready to deal?”
“Great! This is what's going to happen..... you meet me in Central Park at the fountain in 30 minutes. I bring Jackson and turn him over, and you come with me.....”
“Why do you want me to go with you, Jaden?”
“I want you to sit down with me and tell me why I'm not the one...... I want you to tell me why you crushed me by laughing at how I felt..... you know, a walk down memory lane so to speak.....”
“Fine.... whatever you say, Jaden.....”
Don heard the phone click in his ear. He went to the bedroom where Danny was on the phone with Mac. Don took the phone and told Mac that he was to meet Jaden in the park in 30 minutes. Mac said he would have some people planted near the fountain while he and Danny would try to find where Jackson was being held. Don thanked him and ended the call. He turned to Danny and said ; “We're gonna get Baby back, I swear!”
As soon as Jaden finished his call to Don, he told Spike to keep an eye on Jackson because he had to go out for a while. Spike was all too happy to comply because he really really liked Jackson. Jaden told him not to mess Jackson up too badly because he didn't want to have to find him a new playmate. Jaden headed to Central Park and made his way toward the fountain. He'd waited for this for so long, and it was within his grasp. He knew he wasn't playing fair, but Don hadn't when it came to his feelings. No matter! Don would have more than ample opportunity to rectify that soon.
Danny met Mac at the lab and they quickly ran the possible combinations of the numbers as an address. They determined the address to be 2366 Marion Ferry Road. Mac told Danny to come with him while he called for back-up. Before they left the lab, Mac advised the officers to proceed with caution because of the possibility of a hostage situation. When they reached Marion Ferry Road, Danny began to tense up. He was nervous, but ready to do whatever he needed to do to get Jackson back safely. The address turned out to be an office connected to an old warehouse. When Mac got word that back-up was in place, he and Danny kicked the front door in.
Don saw Jaden standing by the fountain, but didn't see any sign of Jackson. That pissed him off to no end because that meant Jaden hadn't kept his end of the bargain. Jaden smiled when he saw Don, who walked up to him and asked where Jackson was.....
“Come on, Don.....really???? This is supposed to be our time.....”
“You said you would bring Jackson.....”
“That was mostly just to get you here...... if it makes you feel any better, Jackson is safe.”
“Says you! You have my attention, Jaden..... what's on your mind?”
“That's more like it! Where to start? Oh, I know..... what is it about me that turns you off?”
“I don't understand....”
“Yes, you do! Why did you make me think you wanted me all those years ago and then turn me down?”
“If you thought that, it was only in your mind. I tried my best to discourage you at every turn. I never led you on, I never made promises of any kind, and I certainly didn't try to be anything more than a friend.....”
“I remember how you used to look at me.....”
“There was nothing there..... believe me!”
“WHY CANT'T YOU JUST LET ME HAVE WHAT I WANT????????????”
“Because it's not what I want, Jaden.....”
“I DON”T CARE WHAT YOU WANT! THIS IS ABOUT ME, DAMMIT!!!!!”
Just then Don's cell chirped in his pocket. He glanced at the display and saw Danny's number. That meant that they had found Jackson! He signaled to the officers and they moved in to arrest Jaden Ross for the kidnapping of Jackson Flack. Don read Jaden his Miranda rights and the patrolmen took him away. Don called Danny, who told him to meet them at Mercy General. Don could tell Danny had been crying and suddenly his blood ran cold. He got in his car and hurried to the hospital as fast as he safely could.
Danny saw Don running across the parking lot of the hospital and went out to catch him. Don wanted to see Jackson, but Danny told him that they needed to talk before he went inside......
“Danny, what's wrong?”
“He's not in good shape, Don.....”
“What do you mean? How bad is it, and who did it?”
“There's no easy way to put it.....”
“Godammit, Danny, just tell me!”
“When Mac and I got to him, he was huddled in a corner and covered in blood. He suffered several really bad knife wounds, and he's been sexually assaulted several times. Dr. Chapman has him in surgery to try and repair all the damage that's been done. That's bad enough, but I'm concerned about his state of mind.....”
“What are you telling me here?”
“When Mac shot the guy in the room with Jackson, he didn't even flinch. I tried to help him up so we could get him to the ambulance, but he wouldn't have it. He started trying to scream and he pulled away from me. He said he'd go, but he didn't want me touching him. Every time I reached for him, he'd pull away.....”
“Sounds like he's in shock..... did he say anything about the other guy?”
“Mac told me the guy was Charles “Spike” Murphy. Does the name ring a bell?”
“Not at the moment..... Danny, I really wanna see Jackson!”
“Let's go inside and see if Mac had heard anything yet.....”
Don followed Danny down the hallway to the waiting room where Mac was sitting. When they entered the room, Mac stood and Don walked over, shook his hand, and thanked him for helping to get Jackson back. Danny asked if Dr. Chapman had been in yet and Mac said that he hadn't. The three men sat talking quietly and soon the doctor stepped in. He greeted the three men, and Don asked how Jackson was. The doctor's face was grim as he explained Jackson's condition......
“He's in recovery right now, and may be there for some time. He's suffered significant trauma, both physically and emotionally. He suffered numerous knife wounds, mostly to his face, arms, hands, and torso. I'm most concerned about the cuts on his face. I fixed them up as best I could, but there will still be some scarring. There were other injuries that we need to discuss.....” Dr. Chapman looked pointedly at Mac as he said this. Mac got the hint and told them he was going for a coffee at the cafeteria.
“What other injuries were you referring to, Doc?”
“Don, Jackson was sexually assaulted several time during the time he was held captive. Some of the assaults were with a foreign object. He will have some discomfort during elimination of waste and urine, but hopefully that will ease in time......”
“Doc, Danny told me that Jackson wouldn't let him touch him when he was rescued. Any idea why?”
“Don, I don't know. I did have a hard time examining him until I could make him understand who I was and what I was doing. When he realized it was me, he complied with no problems.....”
“Doc, when can I see him?”
“It's hard to say, Don. He's heavily sedated right now because of the surgery. I'll have someone could get you when he's awake.....”
“Thank you, Dr. Chapman.....”
Shortly after Dr. Chapman left, Mac came back with coffee for Don and Danny. He could tell by the looks on they guys' faces that whatever the doctor had to say wasn't good. Danny thanked him for the coffee and Mac asked if they needed anything and Danny told him that they were okay. When Mac got ready to leave, Don told Danny he wanted to talk to Mac.....
“Mac, thank you for what you did for Jackson.....”
“Don't worry about it, Don.... it was something that had to be done.....”
“Nonetheless, I still appreciate it.....”
“What happened with Jaden?”
“I tried to talk to him, but he had something of a meltdown so I signalled the uniforms to take him in.”
Mac said he was going to the station to have a talk with Mr. Ross and said that he would speak to them soon. Don went back inside to see if there had been any change with Jackson. Danny was still in the waiting room, and when Don asked, he replied that no one had come yet. While they were waiting, the two men talked about Jackson and Jaden , and all that had happened in the past few days. Don said he would be glad when they could see Jackson and Danny replied the he would, too.
Soon after, a nurse came into the waiting room and told the guys that they could see Jackson. They followed her to his room, and before they went it, the nurse told them that he was still under lite sedation and might be a bit groggy. Danny thanked her, and he and Don went in. They tried to prepare themselves, but the sight of Jackson lying there all wrapped up in bandages was a bit much. Don walked up to the bed and reached to take Jackson's hand when he snatched it back and told Don; “Don't touch me.....” Don's feelings were hurt, but he didn't say anything. He asked how Jackson felt, and was told that he felt alright, just sore. The conversation didn't last very long, and Danny told Jackson that they would come see him the next day. Jackson said that it would be okay and said that he might be better company the next day.
When they got home, Danny said he was going to bed. Don said he would be in soon and decided to call Mac. Don asked Mac about Jaden, and he said that Jaden had confessed to the kidnapping plot because his brother had been denied parole. That, coupled with the fact that he was still carrying a torch for Don, made for one really messed-up situation. Mac asked about Jackson, and Don explained what the doctor had told them. He told Mac about how Jackson reacted when he tried to hold his hand. Mac told Don that he and Danny needed to have a little patience considering all that Jackson had been through. The two men talked a bit more and then Mac told Don he was going to try and get some sleep. Don bid Mac a good night and went in to get ready for bed.
Across town, Jackson lay awake staring at the ceiling. He was fighting sleep because every time he closed his eyes, he could see Spike coming at him or on top of him. The mere thought made him sick. Then there was the incidents with Danny and Don where he didn't want them touching him. He knew he'd hurt them by saying that, and that he was going to have to find a way to explain. It wasn't their fault he felt the way he did, and it wasn't fair keeping them at arm's length and not telling him why.
The next morning found Don and Danny up and eager to get to the hospital to see Jackson. They quickly ate breakfast and left the apartment, heading to the hospital. When they arrived, Dr. Chapman was just finishing his rounds. Don stopped him at the nurse's station and asked about Jackson. Dr. Chapman said that Jackson was showing improvement, and might be able to go home the following day. That was great news to Don and Danny. They couldn't wait to have Jackson home where he belonged. When the arrived at his room, they knocked and entered. Jackson smiled when he saw them. Danny told him that he was glad Jackson might be getting to come home, and Don echoed the sentiment. Jackson looked concerned, and Danny asked what was wrong.....
“I need to ask some questions.....”
“Go ahead, babe, it's okay.....”
“The first question is this: what happened to the guy called Spike?”
“He's dead.....Mac shot him when we found you at the warehouse.....”
“Thank you, Jesus! I owe Mac Taylor big time for that.....”
“We all owe Mac for that one, Jax.....”
“My second question is in regard to Jaden: why did he do this?”
Don looked a bit uncomfortable, but knew that Jackson deserved the truth because of everything he'd gone through.....
“He did it becaue of me, baby...”
“But why, Don?”
“Years ago, I was friends with Jaden's brother James. Jaden had a crush on me, but nothing ever happened because I wouldn't let it. After I became a cop, James was involved in a robbery and he killed a man. I was a witness, and had to testify. My testimony helped send him to prison. When James was denied parole the last time, Jaden thought he could get you out of the way so he could try and win me over. He's in jail now, and can't bother us anymore.....”
“Stop beating yourself up, Don.....”
“No “buts”, Don..... I know you, remember?”
“Now, I have a request.....”
“What is it, Jax?”
“When they let me out, I want to sleep in the guest room for a few days.....”
Both men were stunned and a bit confused at the request. Neither understood, and when Don asked why, Jackson told him that he would explain everything in due time. His voice was starting to go again, and he told the guys he needed to rest his throat. They told him that they would be back in the morning, and he nodded his head in response. As they were leaving the hospital, Don asked Danny what all of that had been about. Danny said that he wasn't sure, but all of it did seem a bit odd. Don dropped Danny off at the apartment and he headed to the precinct to try and catch up on the paperwork he knew would be waiting for him.
Jackson was discharged from the hospital the following afternoon. Dr. Chapman gave him wound care instructions, and a special diet to follow for at least two weeks. Don arrived to pick him up, and Jackson asked where Danny was. Don explained that Danny was at the apartment getting things ready for their arrival. They stopped at the pharmacy to pick up Jackson's meds, then proceeded home. When they arrived, Jackson could smell the unmistakable aroma of Danny's lasagna in the oven. He could see that the apartment had been cleaned, and knew that both of his guys had put some serious effort into getting things ready.
After dinner, Jackson was tired and ready to go to bed. He made his way to the guest room and closed the door. Don and Danny looked at each other sadly and Don shook his head. Later, as they were getting ready for bed, Danny heard sobbing coming from the guest room. He told Don, who thought they should see what as bothering Jackson. He knocked on the door and was told to go away. Don tried the doorknob to find that it was locked. He called out to Jackson but only got silence in return. He and Danny went to bed, but sleep was a long time coming.
The next day at breakfast, Don asked Jackson about the night before. Jackson looked away, but Don insisted. Jackson told him that there were some things they all needed to talk about, and that not all of it would be easy to hear. The three men went to the living room and sat down.....
“I hope I can explain this and be able to get my point across. It goes back to when I told both of you not to touch me. It wasn't your fault. I just didn't feel worthy because of what had happened to me.....”
“But none of that was your fault, babe.....”
“I realize that, Don..... that's just how I felt.....”
“Jax, you can't possibly believe that we hold any of that against you.....”
“I sure hope you don't, Danny..... I was just doing what I had to do to survive.....”
At that point, Jackson began to cry while Don and Danny held him. Later that night, Don told Jackson that he didn't have to sleep in the guest room. Jackson began to get nervous, and Danny noticed quickly. He pulled Don aside and told him what he'd noticed. When it was time for bed, Don noticed that Jackson stopped short in the bedroom door and was looking fearfully at the two of them. He walked over to where Jackson was standing and took his hand. He led him over to the bed where he sat down, asking Jackson to do the same.....
“Baby, you have nothing to be afraid of. Danny and I talked it over, and we think the best thing for now is to have you just sleep in the same room with us. We know you can't do anything, and we don't expect you to until the doctor says it's okay and you feel up to it. How does that sound?”
“That sounds good to me, Donnie..... I want you to know it means a lot that I have two of the most kind and understanding men in my life.....”
“Don't sweat it, Jax..... we love you , and just want you to be okay....”
Jackson began therapy about a week after that night. Danny had set him up with a guy he knew that specialized in sexual trauma, and he did Jackson a world of good. He went to sessions twice a week and made excellent progress. He went for a total of six month, and when his therapist released him, he planned a surprise for his guys.
Don and Danny had been going all day long, collecting evidence and suspects. Both men were tired when they got home, yet Don panicked when he didn't see Jackson. He frantically called out, and ran down the hall to the bedroom where he stopped dead in the bedroom doorway. Danny, who had been right behind Don, ran into him and was trying to see what the hell was going on. Jackson was posed on the bed draped in yards of crimson satin and nothing else. Don whistled appreciatively, and Danny could only stare.....
“Dr. Simms released me today.....”
“That's great, baby.....”
“Is all of this for us, Jax?”
“That's the general idea, Danny, but some of it's for me, too.....”
The next three hours were spent re-connecting and loving. Don was so happy that Jackson was okay and that he trusted himself and Danny again. As Jackson lay sleeping in both his and Danny's arms, he vowed to keep his guys as safe as he possibly could.