Authors: Evan Grace
The Heartbreaker Series
By Evan Grace
Copyright © 2015 by Evan Grace.
All rights reserved.
First Print Edition: November 2015
Limitless Publishing, LLC
Kailua, HI 96734
Formatting: Limitless Publishing
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to locales, events, business establishments, or actual persons—living or dead—is entirely coincidental.
For anyone who has ever dealt with addiction. Keep working the program and taking it one day at a time. Don’t ever give up the fight.
Table of Contents
“Should we give him more time?” Dr. Franklin asks me. All I can do is shake my head.
Nico Bianchi has let me down again. I don’t know why I keep giving him chance after chance when all he’s been is a no-show. Oh, he came to a couple of appointments, but he seemed about as uninterested as a person could get.
He tells me he loves me and that he wants this baby, but his actions prove otherwise. I know he still drinks all the time and uses drugs. The multiple sluts he’s been hanging out with doesn’t help either.
I guess I should be glad that I stopped sleeping with him when his behavior turned more erratic. Who knows what types of STDs he has. I was truly hoping he’d change for us. Instead, he’s gotten worse.
Today, I’m going to find out the sex of the baby. At my twenty-week ultrasound, the baby kept his or her legs crossed and wouldn’t show us. Since I’m measuring small, they want to do another ultrasound today.
“Okay, since we’re not waiting, let’s get started.”
I lie back on the table and pull up my shirt. Dr. Franklin tucks a paper drape into the top of my jeans. She squirts some of that warm jelly onto my belly and grabs the wand thingy. “Let’s hope this little one cooperates with us today.”
As soon as my baby’s image appears on the screen, tears build in my eyes. I still can’t believe I have a little human growing inside of me. The doctor tells me everything she sees and my heart swells at the knowledge that my baby is looking good.
“Oh my. This little one is finally working with us. It appears you’re having a little girl.”
I start crying happy tears. I’m having a little girl. My life will soon be dresses, baby dolls, and shoes. “That’s great,” I whisper, my voice hoarse from the tears I’m shedding.
After my checkup, she lets me know that, when I enter my eighth month next month, I will have to start coming in every two weeks. She tells me to continue normal activity for now, but if I have any tightening in my belly or begin to spot, I need to start slowing down. I tell her goodbye and stop at the front desk to schedule my next visit.
When I step outside, I make my way to my car and climb inside. I blast the heat and try to warm myself up. While I wait, I send Nico a text.
Jill: Where were you? You missed ANOTHER appointment.
I pull out of the parking lot and decide to stop by Nico’s condo. I’ll show him the pictures and tell him what we’re having. He’ll probably act like he doesn’t care, as usual.
When I reach his condo, I see another car sitting in the driveway and my stomach starts to turn. I get out and make my way to the front door. I knock and ring the bell, but he doesn’t answer.
I have a key, but normally I don’t use it. Well, today that changes. I’m tired of him hurting me over and over. I feel like I’ve become pathetic because I always forgive him. I always give him another chance.
I stick my key into the lock, turn it, and then push the door open. The place is a mess. There are bottles everywhere. Vodka, tequila, and beer litter the coffee table, the end tables, and every other available space. I walk through the living room and make my way down the hall to his room. My stomach turns violently when I notice women’s clothing scattered all over the floor. The pile ends at Nico’s door.
I take a deep breath and push the door open. A pained cry leaves my lips before I can stop it. Some bleached blonde hoochie is sitting astride Nico, bouncing up and down as he grips her hips.
The noise I made must’ve gotten his attention. He looks around her, and his eyes widen when they connect with mine. He shoves the girl off of him and jumps out of the bed. His dick is hard and has a condom dangling from it. I bend over and throw up right in his doorway.
“Jill, are you okay?” His speech is slurred, so I know he’s fucked up. He tries to come toward me, but I hold up a hand to stop him. The blonde pouts on the bed and then picks up a mirror. I hear the unmistakable sound of her snorting something.
The tears start coming as I feel my heart completely shatter. “Do I look okay?” I shout. “I’m done with you! You’ve done nothing but hurt me and let me down!”
He tries to speak, but I ignore him.
“This is the last straw. I don’t want to see you, hear from you, nothing.”
“Jill, what about our baby?” he asks.
I place my hands on my bulging belly. “This little girl is mine and mine alone. She has no father. I won’t have you letting her down the way you’ve constantly let me down. I fucking love you, and you’ve done nothing but repeatedly hurt me. I can’t let you hurt her too.”
“Oh shit, I forgot your appointment. Last night was busy at the club.”
I cut him off and look at the blonde, who finally starts to look embarrassed. “Yeah, I can see you were busy. At least you used a fucking condom, you asshole.”
I turn and run through his condo. I can hear him shouting my name and the sound of stuff being thrown around. I run out of his place and jump into my car. Then I pull out of his driveway and speed down the street.
The tears are blinding me. I shouldn’t be driving right now, but I couldn’t stay there one minute longer. I should’ve broken things off with him a long time ago, but I was blinded by love. I truly thought he loved me too.
I don’t see the car heading right toward me until it’s too late. The sound of metal crunching and glass breaking is the last thing I hear.
I pace my living room. I don’t know what the fuck to do. After Jill left, I kicked out Brandy or Candy or whatever the fuck her name was. I threw a towel over the spot where Jill got sick and went to take a cold shower, which helped clear my head and sober me up a bit. I drank about half a pot of coffee in the last hour and let it clear the cobwebs in my head.
I keep calling Jill, but it goes directly to voicemail. She needs to let me explain. I know I don’t deserve it, but she needs to give me a chance to make things right.
While I wait for her to call me back, I start cleaning up my living room. Minutes later, my phone rings.
I grab it and see that it’s Gabe, my best friend and Jill’s older brother. He’s probably calling to chew my ass out, but then at least I can find out where Jill is. “Hey, Gabe, what’s up?”
“Jill’s been in an accident. You need to get to Memorial Hospital right now.” Gabe’s voice sounds grim. My stomach turns, and my heart starts beating rapidly in my chest. I run through my condo and throw my tennis shoes on. After grabbing my keys off of the counter, I race out the door.
I reach the hospital in record time and find Gabe and his fiancée sitting in the waiting room. Gabe stands up when he sees me and comes to me. “They’re still running tests on her and monitoring the baby. They won’t let us see her until they get her transferred to a room on the labor and delivery floor.”
“Oh God, is our baby okay?” My vision gets cloudy as tears build up in my eyes.
“We don’t know. I know they’re worried about her going into premature labor.” Gabe rests his hand on my shoulder. “If she goes into labor, they won’t try to stop it. The baby will be early, but viable.”
He gives me a squeeze before he goes back to sit with Jasmine. I pace a little while longer. Then, I sit down across from them.
It’s another hour before a nurse finally lets us know that they’ve moved Jill to a room on the labor and delivery floor and that we can head up to see her. The silence as we step on to the elevator is unnerving, but I prefer the silence because I’m afraid that Gabe is going to start asking questions I’m not prepared to answer.
The elevator opens, and we step off onto the unit. They direct us to her room, and when we reach it, I take a deep breath and follow behind Gabe and Jasmine. Jill is lying in the hospital bed with a bandage above her eyebrow and a bandage over her nose. There are straps wrapped around her stomach, and I can hear the steady beat of our daughter’s heartbeat from the monitor next to Jill’s bed. Guilt and self-loathing fill me as I sit and stare at the woman I love and who I continue to hurt over and over again.
We all sit in silence while Jill lies there, sleeping. The doctor gave her pain medicine while she was downstairs and said that she’d be out for a while. With a shaky hand, I reach out and place it on Jill’s belly. I feel a thump against my hand. At first I’m not sure I even really felt anything, but then I feel it again and again. Something inside my chest snaps, and the tears begin to flow.
I could’ve lost them both today all because my addictions have taken over my life. I’ve fallen so far down the hole that I’m afraid there is no hope for me. I feel a hand on my shoulder and look up at Gabe. There is no anger in his eyes, just concern. I look back down at Jill’s sleeping form and know what I need to do.
“Brother, I need your help.” My voice is low and broken.
Gabe squats down next to me. “Whatever you need. You know that.”
“I know. Can you help me get into rehab? I need to go, now.” There’s no way I can do this alone.
“Okay, let me make some calls.” He slaps me on the back, kisses his girlfriend, and steps out of the room.
“You’re doing a brave thing.” I turn to Jasmine, who is sitting in the corner.
“I should’ve done this a while ago. I’m afraid it’s too late.”
My daughter kicks my hand. I bend down so I’m closer to Jill’s belly and begin to softly sing, “
Fa la ninna, fa la nanna.”
used to sing that lullaby to me and my sisters when we were little.
Gabe calls my name from the doorway about a half hour later. I follow him into the hall. “What’s up?” I ask. I wonder if he found a place for me to go.
“I found a place in New York for you. They even have a bed open in their detox unit. I looked it up, and it looks like a nice place. You’ll have the option to just do the residential treatment or stay for the extended care. I booked you a flight, and we need to get you to the airport in two hours. My dad will pick you up and drive you there. Don’t worry about your condo. I’ll take care of that for you, but what about the club?”
“Thanks, Brother. I’ll call Mac. He’s been taking care of the club in Chicago. He’ll make sure everything is taken care of.” I’d sell that damn club right now if I needed to. “I’m just going to peek in on Jill real quick. Then I’ll go pack.”
I step back into the room and stand next to the bed. “
,” I whisper.
I kiss Jill’s belly then move toward the head of the bed. Gently, I brush her hair out of her face. I lean down and whisper, “I’m going to fix this. You’re going to forgive me because I need you and love you.” I brush my lips against hers and stand up.
Jasmine stands up and hugs me. She surprises me when she whispers, “We’ll keep an eye on them for you until you come back.”
“Thank you.” I kiss her forehead and make my exit.
I sit in front of my gate and wait to board the plane. My hands tremble as nervous energy flows through me. I’m scared about what’s going to happen. I have no idea what to expect, but I’m ready. I want to right all of my wrongs, and I don’t want to miss out on my child’s life because I’m too fucked up to care.
My phone rings, and I pull it out of my bag. “Hey, Gabe. Is she awake?”
“Yeah, she’s awake. How could you? I know you’re sick and you need help, but you missed the appointment because you were banging some random bitch. That’s why the wreck happened, you selfish asshole! She was so upset that she wasn’t paying attention when she pulled out into the intersection and another car hit her.”
I don’t even know what to say. It’s my fault. She could’ve died—the baby could’ve died because of me. I hang my head. There’s nothing I can say right now, because he’s right. I’m a selfish asshole who fucks everything up. Just one more thing to add to my list of mistakes that I have to make amends for, and I will.
“Gabe, I’m going to make this right. I promise you,” I say with conviction. I hope he believes me.
“Nico, you know I love you, but it may be too late. I’ve never seen my sister like this. You just focus on getting yourself the help you need, and I’ll watch out for her, okay?”
“Please tell her I love her. I’ll call you when I land.”
I turn off my phone. As soon as the other passengers begin boarding, I stand up and wait for them to call my row. Gabe’s words echo in my head as I make my way down the tarmac and find my seat on the plane. I throw sunglasses on and rest my head against my seat, ignoring everyone around me. My mind drifts back to the past, and I smile when I remember the first time I ever met Jill Swanson.
Ten years ago…
I follow my best friend, Gabe, his dad, his mom, and his stepdad onto the bleachers. I was surprised when Gabe invited me to his hometown to meet his family. We met a couple of years ago, when he first moved to Chicago. We hit it off and fell into a deep friendship. He’s become a brother to me.