part 6 by Vicki
Jude rushed to get the train, but the doors closed too fast and it pulled away. Damn it.
She stood on the platform; waiting for the next one, hoping in didn't take too long. She wanted to get back to Kerry's place and soak in a hot bath. Lydia and Dr. Romano took care of Thomas and Foster parents would take him home first thing in the morning. Under strict instructions, she had grabbed her stuff and left the hospital to take the rest of the week off. She couldn't imagine what she was about to do with herself. The peace and quiet. Being alone while Kerry was at work. She figured she would go sightseeing. She had not seen much of Chicago since she arrived, and she had wanted to see Wrigley Field.
She couldn't believe this. The day was just getting worse and worse as the snow stopped falling and the night arrived. Why did she have to miss the train? Her headache suddenly a splitting migraine. Luka sat down on the seat behind her, and rested. He had finished his shift and wanted to go home and soak in a hot bath. He saw Jude standing only a few feet away. Two people who had thought they knew each other ignored one another. Had they come to a place where they couldn't go back from? If they spoke up and told the truth, of what their hearts felt would a line be crossed? If they let their souls flow with feelings and wants and desires would they finally get what they wanted? Neither of them moved nor spoke. Afraid. Excited. Lost.
Her heart died. Jude instantly felt Luka standing behind her. He stood, his eyes closed, he could smell the shampoo in her hair, and the perfume on her neck. She stood, her eyes closed, her soul craving. She had to stop this before things got out of hand. Things being herself, his lips, her hands, their hearts.
What the hell are you doing? He found himself too tantalized with the scent of her perfume, and the tiny hairs on the back of her neck to answer. She could smell his after-shave, her mouth watered. He could hear her breathing, it was undeniable, she was as nervous as he was. He didn't say anything, not so sure what to say, he hated her, how dare she confuse him the way she did, her voice, her presence.
Stop doing that. She could feel him breathing. He just wanted to know her, but she gave him not even an indication of ever letting him get close. Through her stubbornness and hurt, she was not about to let a man destroy her like her father did. She knew in her heart of hearts she would never survive. Her heart had long been neglected, and he wanted to be the one to change that. He liked how he felt when he saw her smile. Her nervousness embraced his heart, and the way she tried to pretend he didn't affect her touched his soul. He wanted to know her. Why so much hurt reflected from her eyes, and who had caused it? Was she jealous? Was it possible that she was angry at him not because of his disapproving words but of seeing him this morning with another woman?
The crowd, which had gathered on the platform to catch the next train suddenly, disappeared. The music soft, the singing voices gentle, the lyrics of love.
I have to go. whispered Jude.
Let me explain, pleaded Luka. She could feel his breath on the back of her neck.
There's nothing to explain.
Yes there is, Without thinking, he took her arms into his hands, and turned her around to face him. Jude struggled to get away, but he didn't hold her too tight, and she didn't struggle too hard. They were not speaking. They were not even breathing. Too taken with the moment to speak or move or remember something as simple as who it was they were. He needed to see her face, her eyes, and her soul, I don't want you to go.
I still have my headache, I have to go home. Her head was still spinning. Her heart pounding. Why should it bother her if he was kissing another woman? She knew she was making fool of herself and she needed to get out of there before she died.
She kissed me. He argued his defense. Jude pulled her arms away from his hands, and slowly walked away. She didnt want to hear all the disgusting details. He followed behind; he was not going to let her go easily. He would do almost anything in his power to stop her. Gently take her into his arms, smother her with his heart, love her like he had the moment he saw her. He dreaded it. The thought if he let her go now, he would never get her back. She doesn't mean anything to me. You have to believe me Jude. In his pleading, his accent rich as she had ever heard it before.
Why? It doesn't matter to me. You can kiss whoever you want. She didn't believe that anymore than he did.
Than why are you leaving? He had noticed.
I told you I have a headache. She was a little angry, he had seen through her lie and straight into her heart. He didn't want her to go. He didn't want her to go ever again. He wanted her to stay and make a life with her. I don't want you to go.
So I'm supposed to stay because you want me to?
I want you to stay because you want to!
I don't want to. Being this cold towards him was the only way she thought would keep him from her heart. Instantly his heart broke. He thought she didn't want him. The furthest thing from the truth. Jude just couldn't bring herself to say the words. She was humiliated. If only she had not made such a big deal out of all of this, and now her embarrassed pride was taking her home no matter what.
Fine. He was hurt and upset. She could hear the sadness in his voice, and it pulled at her but she couldn't back down. Her pride bruised, her ego crushed. Under no circumstances would she give her heart to him now. I mean who am I to make you stay. He longed for her. He voluntarily gave her his heart and she unknowingly broke it.
No-one. lied Jude. Of course he was. He was the man who had stolen her heart the moment she saw him comforting an elderly woman in the ER, who had come to him with a lost mind, and dampened spirit. When she watched him engrossed in his work that enveloped his life joyously. When tears came to his eyes when a little boy held his hand, crying in pain throughout the night, wanting his mother, who had died in surgery.
Right. Her words ripped straight to the core of his soul. These were not the words he longed to hear. I'm just a kopile who asks for too much.
Was this to be her life? Men asking too much from her and wanting more and hurting her because she couldn't give it to them? Her father. Luka Kovac. She had gone through this torment and anguish once in her life, she was not about to go through it again. Unbelievable! You kiss another woman and I'm suppose to feel guilty because I don't want to stay?
She kissed me, protested Luka.
Her silence was deafening.
Nothing is going to happen between Jenny and me. He was adamant. He knew while Jude was in his life, no other woman would ever come close.
I don't need to hear this. What you do with your life and who you do it with, is no concern of mine.
I'd like it to be. God how he wanted it to be. How he wanted her to be.
Why not? What can't what I do piss you off? What can't it move you?
Why would it? She tried as hard as she could to deny from him and her heart what he did, did affect her. It was prudent he understood she wanted nothing to do with him. She didn't want him to think she liked him just because she did, and she was determined to be careful he didn't see what her eyes showed, and what her heart felt. The simple truth.
You tell me. He wanted her to say it. He needed to hear the words of what her heart felt and what her eyes showed him.
I'm sorry for any misconceptions you might have, Kovac, but I don't have anything to say or to tell you. Once again of course she did. It broke her heart to see him kissing another woman the way she had wanted to for so long. She wanted to stand held in his arms, embraced by his warmth and love. She wanted to feel his lips upon her own. She wanted to die from embarrassment and she had brought it all upon herself. If only she had not carried on and made a big deal out of the redheaded nurse. If she had only kept, her big mouth shut and went home like Dr. Romano ordered her to.
Okay Jude. He was hurt and confused. They had been getting on so well lately. You don't have anything to say but I do...I want...
Please don't. She cut in on him. She couldn't hear his words. She couldn't bear it. Saying them out aloud made them real, and real frightened her to death. She was afraid she would be crushed again. She was scared if she did let him into her life, she would love him, scared loving him would destroy her.
Her father was an utter bastard. Doing this to her. Making her go through this all over again. Why couldn't she just let herself love this man without all the heartache and anguish and fear? She knew why, so did Kerry and they would never forgive her father for what he did to her.
Don't what Jude? Don't say it? Don't speak the truth? He loved how her voice quivered in fear. He wanted to reach out to her and take her completely in, but he felt the further he reached out to her, the quicker she faded back into her despair. Fear surfaced to his heart, he couldn't imagine living without her in his life.
The truth is... she hesitated. She knew words had to be spoken if she was to get out of this with her heart intact. The truth is...I need to go home.
Let me be whatever home is for you. He pleaded with her.
I can't. She couldn't. She knew it would kill her.
I would never hurt you.
Suddenly tears came to her eyes. She could no longer hold them back. It hurts just looking at you, and that's why I need to go home. He reached out to her hoping to take her into his arms, but she stepped back, her few words a whisper. Good bye Luka.
Before he had time to think or wonder what had just happened in his life, she was on the train pulling out of the station and out of his life. This had to be one of the worst nights of his life, as the crowd of people on the platform pushed and shoved their way around. The music stopped and the train was gone. He could do nothing but give himself to her. He knew. He had always known. He loved this woman with all his heart and soul, and already he missed her. He had chased her away with his stupidity.
Suddenly the train jolted as it stopped on the tracks and Luka jumped in his seat. It had all been just a dream. He sat on the train, heading home, and couldn't remember what had happened in his life over the last ten minutes. He had gotten on the train behind Jude, and found a seat down a few from where she sat, and in his tiredness of day, he had drifted into sweet dreams. He searched the seat he saw Jude sit down on, and realized she was already gone, her stop two back.
He wondered why she always insisted on stepping over the line and knew there would come a time in her life when she wouldn't be able to step back from it, and she would regret it, and he hoped he would be there for her. His love for her instantaneously wove itself into his receiving heart, and he could feel the tears well up in his eyes. This was insane. This woman was having such a devastating affect on his being and he wondered how he would ever endure it. He prayed he did. He prayed he found the strength to carry on, in life, and in love.
Kerry quietly entered her apartment, hoping not to wake Jude. Her meeting had run late into the night, an important issue had been added on to the agenda. The Jude Baker outburst in the ER.
In the darkness, Jude sat on a chair near the window, watching the snow slowly fall outside, gently breathing in fainted breath, crying broken tears. The bright light blinded her bloodshot eyes.
Please turn it off, she begged. Kerry switched it straight back off.
I thought you'd be asleep, queried Kerry. She threw her coat and bag on the couch, and switched on the lamp, the light soft, and went to Jude.
I couldn't sleep.
Are you okay? asked Kerry. As always, she was worried about her friend, and never once stopped hoping faith and courage could be restored in the young woman who had come to her broken and battered.
Me? I'm fine.
Kerry didn't believe her. She knew her too well. She knew her silence meant suffering. She knew when she talked too much she was nervous. She knew when she cried her heart broke, and when she couldn't sleep, her soul was lost, and the nightmares returned.
Talk to me. insisted Kerry. Jude couldn't keep anything from her. Kerry like a true friend helped her through anything when she feared Jude would slip back into the depths of destruction that had long been enslaved within her heart.
I've been sitting here going over it in my head, and all I can figure out, is that I wanted to hurt that guy like he hurt his little boy, and that makes me an animal just like him. Hell at least now I know.
I get the eyes from mother, the accent, at least now I know what I get from the old man.
You are not your father. Kerry knew where this was going and she didn't like it. Kerry was harsh; felt she had to be if she ever got Jude through this detour in her road of life and learning.
See a problem, hit someone, and solve the problem.
You are not you father.
Jude was silent; she didn't fully believe Kerry's words. How could she not be like him? She was his flesh and blood, his child. He was her sire, her thorn.
In a single moment her mind blackened, her heart stopped beating and her spirit cried. With no explanation, no questions and no answers found Jude Baker found peace and comfort within the eyes of a man she cared for. She had no will to fight; her instincts vanished within the numbness. She made no movements, no sounds, and the life in her hid within the feelings she felt for a man she had finally found.
The bastard is always going to haunt me, isn't he? Every time I do something, every time I know I've said something stupid, there is this split second when I think he's going step up and slap upside the head, and then of course I remember.
Your fathers not coming back, and why in God's name do you keep doing this to yourself? Kerry knew like times before, Jude needed to touch the black unsavory bottom to help herself climb triumphantly back to the top, where happiness and life embraced her soul and spirit like it once did, before all of this happened, and her father had done this her.
I look at myself in the mirror and in my eyes I see my mother, but in my heart and in my scars I see my father.
No you don't. Not really, cried Jude, You have always been there for me, you saved my life Kerry, and I appreciate it I do, and I will love you always but you just can't know what it's like. Jude could no longer hold back the tears. The past three and a half months of her life catching up with her. The past twenty years haunting her. Thomas Crawley knows and somehow I find comfort in that, I know I shouldn't, because that little boy has been to hell and back, and he will probably go there again before all this is over, but I do.
Kerry didn't know what to say. It was obvious Jude had thought about it. She knew Jude cutting herself off like this surely was not healthy for her sanity, and no matter the words spoken or how many tears cried, she wouldn't give up, and she wouldn't stop just being there for her. A friend to hold, a sister to hug. An eternal mother to love. The isolation once again surrounded Jude's heart and soul. The cavern of fear festering since her childhood surfaced to her being.
**How could he go on? He couldn't and didn't allow himself to. Jude buried her father alongside her mother. He had long to find his love again and sadly found her in his own death. The gunshot blown through his head had been fatal. He had died in his grief, and in his regret. In his wives dying, he had lost his daughter, and losing his daughter had been his own making. In his daughter he saw his wife, and in seeing her he mourn and angered and struck out, and striking out had murdered the innocence of his little girl.**
Do you think maybe it's time to call Sarah? asked Kerry. Sarah Armstrong had been Jude's Psychiatrist since she was 16 years old.
No, that's okay, mused Jude. It was not that bad. I'll be fine; I'll just take a walk, clear my head.
Are you sure?
Yeah I'm sure. Kerry was concerned. Don't worry Kerry, I promise I will call her if I need to.
How about you call her anyway?
Jude was appreciative of Kerry's concern. Okay Mom, I promise. Ill call her tomorrow.
Good. Kerry was relieved. Alone she did her best and got Jude through a lot, but together with Sarah, they knew Jude would survive, and live to see another day unhurt, with no heartache and no despair suffocating her life.
Jude got up and took Kerry into her arms. Friendship and love abundant in their embrace. Go to bed, you look exhausted, and I will see you in the morning.
Okay, it's late, don't walk for too long. ordered Kerry.
Yes Mom. smiled Jude.
Jude grabbed her coat of the rack, and left Kerry's apartment to clear her head. Kerry went to bed, trying to sleep, waiting for Jude to get back.
The snow had stopped falling, but the air was bitter. Jude's coat covered right up to her face, and her beanie kept her ears warm. Before she knew it she had walked blocks, and her mind was lot clearer now. She walked along the sidewalk enjoying this moment, the glass of scotch from the bar two corners back had helped.
Suddenly she found herself in a familiar part of the neighborhood, Kerry's place was nowhere close, but she felt safe and protected. She felt like she was finally home. As she stopped and looked at the apartment building, she couldn't help but smile. She didn't want to believe it, she didn't understand what had brought her here to this place, but in a small part of her heart, she kind of guessed why.
How could she have been so careless letting Luka into her life and her heart the way she had? Had she sent out beacons, showing she was interested in him and his life? Had she given him any indication she wanted him? She thought she hadn't but felt he probably saw it in her eyes when she found him staring at her.
Her thoughts of him tormented her in the most soft and sensual manner. Her thoughts of the past day invaded her mind and she let them. How could he do this to her? What was he doing? Kissing other women? Did he want to show her there were other women willing to kiss him and to be with him? It worked. Jude was as confused as she had ever been since she met him. She couldn't believe how it affected her so deeply and he had left unhealed scars upon her heart with his words from this afternoon. He didn't say anything that wasnt true, but they ravaged through her mind all the same.
She stood on the sidewalk watching the front door of the apartment building suddenly hoping he would come out, saw her standing there, and took her into his arms. She waited and remembered all the times she lost herself in his eyes and immediately found his soul there. She didn't know what had brought her here. She couldn't take it anymore. He had somehow found his way in, to her heart and her soul. She couldn't help but think about him and she hated herself. It was the last thing she ever wanted. Having another man touch her in the place she had secretly hidden away could only bring her to a dark place again, but she couldn't help it. Luka Kovac existed there and for everything she had left in her, she couldn't deter it.
Jude Baker always thought love was an emotion believed in the mind, not felt within the heart but now she knew the truth, it did exist there. She stood outside Luka's apartment door, where she saw the light was still on and her heart ached, without her sweet angel being her life. She wanted to give herself to him, completely and voluntarily and caring nothing of the consequences. Her reality haunted her. Her reality was she didn't have him, couldn't give herself to him, afraid she would be crushed again, and he probably wouldn't want her after the way she treated him. No one deserved the disrespect and contempt she often forced upon him. She wondered how he would ever forgive her. She felt and believed he probably never would. She gathered her strength and will and began the journey she prayed would be the beginning of the rest of her life.
She softly knocked on his door and of course, she knew what had brought her here. It was Luka Kovac. There was nothing he wouldn't do for her. He would slay dragons if that's what she wanted from him. Keep the demons from her dreams. Have angels softly blow away her nightmares as she slept, allowing her good dreams to flow freely through her mind as the twilight's past and the new dawns begun.
to part 7
Back to table of contents
Back to Older fic
To give Fanfic Feedback, go here