part 9 by Vicki


“Look at me,” Jude couldn't. She didn't want to lose herself there again. She didn't want him to see what her eyes showed. The admiration. The desire. The love. “Please look at me, Jude.” God how she loved the way he said her name. She felt safe. His voice promised everything and it terrified her. Promises had a way of being broken and she had suffered from them. With all her strength and courage she tried not to look at him, but they both wavered and her eyes meets his. She instantly saw life for her there. “Nothing is going to happen that you don't want to happen,” She tried to look away, but he stopped her. His large hands gently held her face. “I'm not him. I'm not going to hurt you.”

“Today!” wept Jude.

“What in God’s name did he do to you?”

He broke her heart plain and simple. Her hope spent. Her soul perished almost beyond repair. She felt she would be better off if the darkness of death took her. In one full swoop the Gods had taken from her the man she loved and respected, and returned a beast. At times Kerry had to check in on her, her tired bereaving body barely breathing in life. What had he done to her? He had emotionally destroyed everything she ever was and everything the heavens allowed her to be.

“I don't know what it is you want. I don't know what you want from me. What do you want from me?” Jude pleaded with him as she pulled away from him. She couldn't stop herself from crying. She didn't want him to see her like this. She didn't want him to know he was affecting her this way. She was scared he would hurt her. She was sure she would never survive if he did. Luka found and dare he say joy in her grief. It meant he could be there for, and he preferred no other place to be.

“Nothing.” He lied. He simply wanted her to want him. He wanted to take away all her pain. God how he wanted just to take her. He wanted to hold her happiness and each other her smiles in his heart, deter her nightmares, wipe her tears, comfort her through the darkest days, sit back watching her bask in her glory and triumphs. He wanted to hold her hand, kiss her lips soft and tender. Be entwined within her chaos, webbed through her schemes and blessed by her peace. He wanted everything from her, a moment, a day, a lifetime, and he knew he would lose her if he said anything, so he stood there denying himself what he wanted, and allowed her to grieve.

“Please, I am not stupid. Everyone wants something, whether or not you give it to him or they just rip it out of you, they want something. Why would you be any different?” She needed to understand. Him. What he wanted from her. What he wanted from her life.

“The truth, Jude? You want the truth?”

“Is there anything else?”

“I want you...not to hurt like this.” She didn't want to hear this. She needed to, walking away this time just wasn't going to be an option, and he wouldn't let it be. He stood in front of her, he didn't touch her, he didn't force himself on her, he just stood there, trying to protect her, “and I’m not going to let you do this to yourself. This is not your fault. The son of a bitch did it to you, not the other way around.” He was as angry as hell. How he hated her father for doing this to her. She fidgeted in rising voice. “I'm sorry, I don't want to frighten you, but you can't keep blaming yourself.”

“I have to.” She cut in.


“Because...” she was dying, her heart broke, “I did something!”


“I don't know but he hurt...” Jude just couldn't go on. It was all too painful. “I don't know what I did. What did I do?” She was confused. She was beside herself. Her hands shook, her tears fell, she died.

“Oh God Jude, you didn't do anything.” Tears came to his eyes. His soul went out to her. His heart ravaged in torment.

“Why did he do it?”

“Because he was sick and he had the problems, not you. You didn't do anything wrong, you have to believe that.” Luka tried to console her. She didn't know what to believe anymore. She was as scared as she'd ever been. She tried to deny him from everything, which was Jude Ann Baker. Her feelings, her thoughts, her heart, her life, but he stood so close to her, there was nowhere she could go, and she was no longer even sure she wanted to go there without him.

Suddenly impulse engulfed him, and she stood captured within his warm arms, seized by his gentle kiss. The delicacy of it instantly touched her heart, and it terrified her. It lasted only a few seconds. He didn't want to frighten her away. He needed to be sure she wanted him as much as he wanted her. “I'm sorry. I shouldn't have done that.” Luka gathered all the willpower he needed to walk away from her. He was angry with himself for letting his desire for her take over. Why did he have to ruin it in wanting more? A kiss. A night. A lifetime. He was afraid he had just lost the only person he'd ever loved the way he loved her. He stood looking out of his living room window at the snow falling again.

She didn't move. She couldn't. She was too afraid to. Afraid if she moved he would disappear, and she would wake from her sweet dream. She was not afraid of him or what he had done, but she feared he would walk out of her life. She feared she wouldn't have him like she so desperately wanted. She feared she wouldn't spend the rest of her life with the only man she'd ever loved. She needed to do something. She needed to show him. Taking the breath she direly needed to steady herself, she bravely walked to him, her heart literally reaching out of her body to him. No longer did she shiver. No longer did she walk away. No longer would she deny him of who she was, and herself of him.

He felt her brush up against the back of his arm, his heart beating him to death. She softly took the side of his face in her calm hand, tilting his head slightly down, so that his eyes meet hers once again. Sometimes she just wished he would take her. No words spoken, no permission needed, just mutual understanding between two souls, craving to be one. Her words only a whisper, “Do that again.”

For a single moment, they didn't move or talk. Blink or breathe. They stood still and silent, looking into each other, their eyes, their souls; they just stood there, simply being.

“Are you sure?” She could hear his deep chivalrous voice but not make out his words. “Jude?”


“Are you sure?” He desperately hoped she was but would understand if she wasn't. She hadn't gone into intricate detail of how her father had hurt her, but he had gathered by what Kerry had told him, it was bad and she had been in a terrible state for a long time. The last thing he wanted to do was hurt her. She shook her head yes but answered no. He couldn't help but smile, he loved this young woman with the earnest of his heart, and it tore at his soul to see her like this, afraid, confused, petrified at letting herself go and allowing her heart to love him like he wanted her to so desperately.

He gently took her face into his own hands, and began to reach down, she whispered, “Unless of course you'd prefer to kiss Jenny.” She was kidding, “Jenny who?” he had no idea who she was talking about. No one existed in his life or his heart but Jude Baker. He met her lips with his own, and kissed her deep and passionately. He simply astounded her and she didn't fight or contest to his velvet felt lips. They were joined kiss to kiss. Heart to heart. Woman to man. Instantly emotional and spiritual love surrounded them. Fears were cast aside. New beginnings begun.

Luka Kovac lifted the sorrowed mask from her face, oh God how beautiful she was he thought, of course he was biased, he was in love with her. Jude Baker felt free for the only time in her life and the man kissing her, was the man who had brought her to this exquisite place. To make love Jude had to be in love and she was in love with no one but Luka.

The moon sat on the brim of the earth, and the soft cold snow fell over Chicago. The candles in Luka's bedroom were the only lights shining in his apartment. Jude's clothes lay over the floor, entangled among his. Her shaking nerves had sunk to the bottom of her stomach and anticipation took over. She balanced herself in front of him, naked and cast him with her sexuality. Instantly, he swooped her into his manly arms and tantalized her perfume neck with his moist lips, wanting to gather her love with his own. He could taste Vanilla all over her warm flesh. He felt her nipples harden upon his chest. He harbored a sensuous knowledge of love and desire and willingness, sharing with her, taking from her, being taken by her, and they rejoiced in each other's fingers, tongues, and lips. They kissed each other with whispered kisses, their lips barely touching but promising more to come. Both his hands took her face, softly stroking it with his warm fingers.

He began to kiss her eyes, her forehead, her temples, and slowly worked down her neck. Luka's tongue tickled all the parts that deliciously turned her on, softly nibbling at the soft parts, whispering in her ears of the things he was about to do to her. Instantly getting lost in her gentleness. Her soul. Her love. They were intoxicated with each other’s juices. Their hands lost all over each other’s body. Luka took her full on the lips wanting to taste her again, their tongues searching, their arms wrapped around each other. She didn't need to tell him anything else, he could read her mind through her eyes, and she could in his. His tongue answering hers, his lips experimenting, and his hands experiencing. Love being tasted. Lust being devoured. His taste sweet perfection. Bound together by the powerful feelings they shared and their sensuous appetite for ecstasy. They allowed each other to abandon themselves and what they felt. He was a gentle lover who embraced her willingly and unselfishly. They stand together drowning one another with spirited souls.

In minutes, he was naked too. Both their shadows cast on the wall by the flickering candles. His fingers gentle as a butterfly's wing, brushed over her hard nipples, causing gasps of sensation to knot in her stomach. Jude ached for him so much it was almost killing her. She kissed him hard on the mouth, and he became crippled by her flavors.

In her sexual experience, Jude felt somewhat comfortable and content for the first time with the way she looked. Luka asked if not the lights on, then candles burning. He wanted to see her every curve, her every freckle, her every flaw. He wanted to see every inch of her naked flesh. She was self-conscious of her body but she felt safe in his arms, confident within his love. A soft crest of desire covered over them as their lips fell together again. He hovered upon her lips, Jude lingered over his, searching for the heat she felt from them only seconds before.

He lay her gently down on his bed, covered her with his own flesh, over both of them lay a blue silk sheet, their embrace almost poetic. They became two innocent souls protected from the wars of life, death, hurt, hatred, and heartbreak. They lay entwined around each other in a lover's cocoon, savoring one another's juices. He softly turned her over on to her back and gently kissed his way down her chest, over her breasts. Her hands tried to stop him from kissing the scars on her chest and stomach, the places she hated most, and he answered by kissing them more. His kissed every part of her body. Some parts made her laugh, some made her cry, some made her blush, others made her quiver in sweetest delight, most made her so deliciously turned on she made him kiss them again and again and again.

Her nails dug into his back as he ever so gently drove himself in her. She cried out his name, her words not but a whisper. Luka. He loved the way she sighed his name, both in pleasure and pain. The pleasure of his touch, the pain of her heart touched by his soul. Her life was suddenly different, she loved it, and she loved him. Instantly he showered her with a world of his love, his heart, his soul, a world simply of Luka Kovac.

Playing in the aftermath of their climatic joy, they truly knew and felt their two hearts became one, united unconditionally. They lay not only experimenting in sex but also in new love. She lied upon him, tenderly experiencing him. He lie breathing in her sweet breath, remembering all the times he took her touch and smell with him into his dreams, but no longer were they dreaming. Words were spoken, sweet, and tender. He told her he loved her; she still couldn't bring herself to say the words, not yet. Her perfume, his aftershave, spicy fragrances merged, as did two young loving souls. He memorized her every touch, her every stroke, her every kiss. Instantly a new aspiring world for him had begun, a world of a woman who had the entirety of his heart, a world of Jude Baker.


They lie on their sides facing each other, his fingers rubbing up and down the nape of her neck. Pulling her to him, his lips indulged in her every fantasy. Indulged in the essence of her warm soft body. Tonight had become a night of willingly giving themselves to each other and to one another's innermost desires.

She was terrified she would disappoint him, but his eyes were clearly the windows to his soul, and they showed her everything when she found herself hypnotized by them. He was not disappointed. He was just as happy as she was, and just as in love. She still hadn't told him how she felt. She feared if she did, he would walk out of her life. He wanted so desperately to hear it spoken from her lips, but he didn't want to push her if she wasn't ready. He just wanted to love her and he did with the sincerity of his heart.

For the only time in her life, she let herself be free, and she finally found her freedom. She lied alongside the most giving and generous man she had ever known. He allowed her to abandon herself to him and what she felt. The spiritual connection Luka believed so deeply everyone needed to completely give to another flowed through him and her.

She felt his whiskered face brush up against the side of her neck, his voice whispering she needed not only to enjoy him but also take all she wanted from him. Their hearts inseparable. Promises were made. He had been heaven sent; he had to have been. Jude believed only God and his heaven made such beautiful creatures like Luka. He gave to her expecting nothing in return. He shared with her openly and freely. He would build her a castle of dreams with his own two hands, and protect her from those who tried to harm her. Embraced in each other's arms, enjoyed with love, covered over with peace, Luka and Jude, for the third tonight, came together.

The night forged forth, and Jude lie upon his welcoming chest, his arms mushroomed around her. She briskly whispered her fingers down his naked arm, entangling them through the tiny hairs, wondering whom he took after, his mother or father, but didn't really care. She hadn't meet his parents but cared for them very much because his father had sown his seed in his mother, and he had been a born beautiful, warm human being who she now wondered if he had sown his own seed in her.

Jude Baker was sure of nothing else but her love for him, and as they fell gently into sleep, wrapped in each other's arms, he heard her soft whispered words. “Volim Te, Luka.”


A new dawning slowly begun cool and it was still snowing. Jude was the first to awaken, still wrapped in her lover's safe arms. They lay on the same pillow they shared through the night and early hours of the morning. She could still smell his aftershave on it. She could still smell him on her flesh. She placed her hand over her face, engulfing his scent stained upon her flesh. His essence filled her nostrils, almost drowning her into sweet heaven.

The look on his face showed he was in the middle of a good dream, and she didn't have the heart to wake him. Gently as not to wake him, she brushed her fingers over his nakedness, remembering last night. The arch of his back, the slender of his waist. The gentleness of his hands and lips. She watched him sleep seeing inspiration and happiness glow from him. Majestic serenity and splendid tranquility.

Panic instantly stricken her heart. What had she done? She had given her heart to another. She had told him how she felt. She couldn't deny it. She couldn't take it back. He knew. He had seen it, felt it, and embraced it. Suddenly her fears surfaced again and no matter how hard she tried, she couldn't stop them.

He softly slept the morning away not knowing of her feelings and the events taking place in both their lives that would inadvertently change them forever. He woke to discover them. The note on the pillow next to him was all which was left of his night with the woman he loved.

**Dearest Luka

I am so deeply sorry for everything.


No reasons why. No in-depth explanations. Not even goodbye. She was a coward and she knew it. She lost her breakfast; she just couldn't keep it down. What had she done? She had walked out on the only man she had truly loved. A mountain of fear suffocated her soul. He had reached out his hand to her and she had taken it. He had given her his heart and as she sat alone in Kerry's apartment, she was sure she had broken it.

Suddenly there was a knock at her door, she jumped up from the couch, wiped her tears, she hoped it was him, she would beg for his forgiveness, plead to him for a second chance. Ask him to take her back into his life. She flung open the door. Luka Kovac was not standing there.


Jude couldn't come to terms with what she had done to Luka. She called in sick. She struggled with the idea of not spending the rest of her life with him. The minutes of the day seemed to tick away into oblivion. She could keep nothing straight in her mind. A tornado ripped straight through her commonsense. She hadn't ever been this carefree with anyone but she felt good, better than she had in so many years, and now she was devastated and this time she had brought it all upon herself.

He could she have been so stupid in leaving and just walking out the way she did? She figured Luka must hate her now. His sensitive eyes gnawed at her, every time she closed her own, even to blink. How could she have been so careless in letting Luka into her life and her heart, and so simply thrown it all away. His love. His happiness. Her own. Her soul lay decayed with guilt and shame. She had been inflicted with so much pain and anguish by her father, and now she had it as good as she felt she would ever have it in her life, and she had stupidly let it slip away.

The morning turned into afternoon, and the afternoon drifted into night. Jude fell to sleep eventually. She wondered what it was she had to do to get him back. She knew she had to go to him, and explain, apologize, beg him to take her back into his life. She prayed he would. She hoped with all her strength he forgave her and wanted her back. She couldn't imagine going through life now, without Luka being with her. She loved this man with everything in her, and she braced herself to fight for him. She had been through so much, come so far, and she wasn't about to turn back now. She needed him, longed for him, and craved him. She wanted to spend the rest of her life with him. She truly loved this man with all of her heart and soul, and she felt she could no longer deny him of that.


She grabbed her keys off the counter, put on her coat, closed the door of Kerry's apartment, took the deep breath she needed, and left what once she thought she would have always called home. Her home now belonged to a man she wanted to fall asleep with every night, and wake up every morning lying alongside. A man whose hand she held when they took long walks, making plans. A man whose babies grew in her, whose children she would nurture and love as much as she did their father. It belonged to a man she would love, always.

She walked all the way to train station, impatiently stood on the platform, and was somewhat anxious of where her life was headed. She knew deep in the place, which is not very often touched by a special soul, her someday finally begun.

Luka's gentle soul and caring spirit grew with such passion and truth and she had welcomed it. They had accepted each other just the way they were. Sometimes naive, occasionally temperamental, most often imperfect. Their souls had been tied so tightly they knew what each other was thinking before it was thought. They touched each other's hearts even with their hands tied. They saw one another even with closed eyes. They breathed for each other even with held breath. They were bound with honest souls, which were craved with love and devotion only for each other. Luka Kovac had helped her endure all her life's hardships, triumphantly helped her enjoy the good times, forget the bad. He refreshed her forgotten dreams within moments. He had happily encouraged her depressed heart, entwined pleasure, and peace within mind, body, and soul, and she let it all fall away.

She stepped into the train knowing in two stops she was about to change all that, and she prayed to God, Luka Kovac allowed her to.


It was going to be a cold winter morning, Luka could just tell. Dawn was breaking and the storm predicted two days earlier began to hit the horizon, Luka could see it from his window. He hadn't shaved in days, slept properly in a week. The days had dwindled into each other. The nights had come too fast and went by too quick. He wondered what he had done. His heart suddenly lay limp with hurt. The rigid lines on his face were more noticeable. His mind jerked and twisted with frustration.

He woke to find a note on his pillow and Jude not at work for the rest of the week. He was too overcome with anxiety and despair to know what to do. He hadn't seen her or heard from her, he couldn't decide whether he should call or go by and see her. The moments he spent with her swam in his mind, and confused him so much. He didn't know what to do. One half of his heart wanted to go to her, to find out what he had done. What he had said to send her away, and fight to have her back in his life. The other half wanted nothing to do with her. It didn't want to sacrifice itself to the torment of waking up every morning and not finding her there.

His soul mourned terribly. He stood looking out the window, watching the world pass by. It had only been a few weeks and already he seldom let himself dream about what life would be like with her. It was just too hard for him to bear. He feared the moment he saw her. He didn't want to have to look at her, knowing when he did he would fall in love with her all over again, and he didn't want to. He had loved her once and she had trampled him.

Already he ate, slept, and showered work. He lived work. It was the only thing that kept his mind off Jude. Physically drained and emotionally crippled, he wondered how he would get through his day, or the rest of his life. Right now, he struggled with the day, knowing life was going to be a whole lot harder.

His feet were killing him. Blisters on both heels. His back ached like hell. Paramedic ride-along was harder than he thought it would be when Dr. Romano offered it up for grabs and it volunteered for it. It had kept him out of the hospital for the past few weeks, and he was thankful for it.

He didn't want to face up to it. The reality. The reality was she had walked out of his life, perhaps even ran, he couldn't be sure, he'd been asleep, and he realized a distance had already grown between them. Luka didn't want to dwell on it any longer, and viciously threw out his thoughts of the woman he loved and paid attention to Pam's instructions.


In her dreams, she had found her salvation in the outline of a gentle man. In her reality, she had walked away. Jude took a long soul-searching look at herself in the mirror. She didn't like what she saw, and it had nothing to do with the scars.

The dripping tap in the ladies room of the ER, banged in her already throbbing head, as she stood looking at herself, wondering what she had done? She had foolishly walked away, perhaps even ran, she couldn't be sure, it was all still a blur, from the man who had loved her. Shame and embarrassment reflect from the face staring back at her, and it knew the sacred place she kept protected and shielded from the hurt and despair had happily accepted his love, and irrationally thrown it away.

She knew life was too short to waste on regret, and hoped today she could right her wrong. Jude splashed water on her face for the second time, and no matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t get it out of her head. Every time she thought about it, it brought tears to her eyes, and a lump to her throat. For the first time in her life, she had found the courage to give the entirety of her heart to another and had walked up the street that lead to Luka’s apartment, the following day after she had run away, to set out to win her man back anyway she could. Beg. Plead. Cry. Walk away if he asked her to, but she hadn’t made it.

Her courage deflated almost instantly when in walking up the stairs that lead inside his apartment building she bumped into Jenny Adams coming out. Jude foolishly thought she could walk back into his life as quick as she left it, and she suddenly discovered the truth. Why would he? Why would he let her back in? Why would Luka Kovac take her back into his heart, and his life, and make a home with her after what she had done?

Their conversation was short and cold. Two women opted to skip with formalities and instead got straight to the point. Jude could still hear Jenny’s vindictive words ringing in her ears, and her mind kept a snapshot of the look on her face when she spoke of her time together with Luka. Jude didn’t know what to think. She felt she knew Luka enough to know he wouldn’t set out to hurt her on purpose. She wondered if he was trying to get back at her. He mind couldn’t rationalize anything or keep anything straight.

“He called me. He said he had a fight with someone and needed to talk.” explained Jenny, lying.

“And you came right on over?”

“Of course I did, why wouldn’t I. He’s a friend and I do what I can for friends.” Jenny couldn’t deter her smirk. She knew she was lying and Jude Baker believed her every word. Luka hadn’t called anyone. He had wanted to be alone. If he couldn’t have Jude he didn’t want anyone especially Jenny Adams, and he told her so, when she banged on his door hoping to push her way into his life. He politely declined her offer to cook breakfast and told her there was nothing between them and wouldn’t be. He told her clearly his heart belonged to someone else. Pissed off, Jenny left plotting her next step even before she bumped into Jude outside, but put her new plan into action immediately against the woman who had come between her and the man she wanted, one she knew she would never get.

“I bet you do.” Jude’s mind ran rampant through all the possibilities. Had he slept with Jenny to get back at her? Had he told Jenny he loved her? Did he want to spend his life with Jenny instead of her? Of course he didn’t. Jude tried to make her heart believe that wasn’t him. He didn’t do that sort of thing, and he didn’t, but she couldn’t convince her mind, and Jenny didn’t help.

“He needed someone and I guess he felt I was the only one who could help him,” stabbed Jenny, she was going to make Jude suffer. If she couldn’t get her man she would destroy him and his happiness, and she saw it slowly dying within the eyes before her, that tried not to cry, “And I helped him.” Jenny smirked as she bragged about a deed that had not been done. She would turn them against one another.

Jude became absent from everything and everyone. Never had she suffered an impact of destruction and decimation upon her heart, not even from her father. This man was her life and the woman standing in front of her stoically pulled him away. In her chamber of selfishness Jenny set forth to watch Jude crumble, and divide two lovers.

“And I have to say, I was not disappointed. Luka is a wonderful lover.” lied Jenny.

The bond Jude and Luka had shared unexpectedly broke. Jude felt Jenny’s statement had to be true. She must have slept with Luka to know what she knew. He had been a wonderful lover, a gentle giver of himself and his love. Jude knew she could not go back. The line had been crossed. She had walked away in fear and confusion but she had not stopped loving him like she suddenly believed he had done.

“I’m just going to get breakfast. You should go up and say hi, and join us.” pushed Jenny. She knew there was no chance Jude was going to stay; it showed on her pale face. She could stand there and lie about spending the rest of her life with Luka and Jude wouldn’t know what to believe.

“I have to go…” Jude stuttered as she rushed down the stairs, trying to keep the tears from her eyes and her heart from breaking.

“Good bye Dr. Baker. I’ll be sure to tell Luka you came by,’ yelled Jenny as Jude rushed away, “Bitch.” whispered Jenny.

Jenny Adams walked off in the opposite direction, leaving behind her path of destruction, but feeling damn good about herself. She wasn’t staying in Luka’s life and neither was Jude Baker.


to part 10

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