“Are you sure you don’t want to come with us?” Brenda asked.
“No, but thank you.”
“Come on, you need to get out.”
Nick was taking Brenda out to celebrate her new job as assistant principal at the school they were opening. It had been a few days since AJ had come by and she didn’t want Kat to spend any more time by herself.
“No, you enjoy it. You’re around kids all day and then you come home and help me with Jake. Enjoy a kid free night for a change!” Kat said with a laugh.
“Jake’s a sweetheart and you know I don’t mind.”
“I know, but you and Nick need some alone time and some adult time.”
“Why don’t you really plan some adult time and stay at his house?” Kat asked wiggling her eyebrows.
“Funny Brady! Maybe I will!”
“Maybe you should!”
“She should what?” Nick asked coming down the hallway. “Sorry, I rang the bell but no one answered. You shouldn’t leave that door unlocked.”
“I usually don’t but I was just heading out to wait for you.” Brenda said.
“Well I’m here so let’s go.”
“You two have fun!” Kat yelled watching them leave. “Oh and don’t come home tonight!”
She heard Brenda and Nick laughing as they left. After feeding Jake, she gave him a bath and put him down for the night. She had just crawled under her covers to watch a movie when she heard the doorbell ring downstairs. When she reached the door, she was amazed to see AJ through the peephole.
“Hi.” she said opening the door.
“Hey.” AJ answered. “Think I could come in for a few minutes?”
Kat pulled the door open and waved her arm. She locked the door and followed him down to the living room. He had already taken a seat on the sofa so she sat in the chair opposite it.
“Excuse me?” Kat asked.
“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have behaved the way I did the other day. I was angry and scared and I didn’t know how to deal with everything that I heard.”
“You were scared?”
AJ nodded and for the first time, Kat noticed the red rings around his eyes. She got up, handed him a box of tissue and sat down next to him on the sofa.
“I’m scared. It was a lot to take in and I couldn’t figure out why you couldn’t tell me what the doctor did.
Kat’s eyes welled up. “I’m sorry I didn’t AJ, but you’re not the only one who’s scared.”
“Then talk to me. Please don’t keep shutting me out.”
“I don’t know how to tell you what I’m feeling AJ. It’s something I deal with myself.”
“But it’s not just you anymore. Jake is here and so am I. Please be honest with me and help me understand.” He paused. “Did you tell Brian how you feel?”
“Then why can’t you tell me?” AJ said loudly making a fist. “I’m the one you were supposed to spend the rest of your life with and you won’t even talk to me anymore.”
“It’s been a long time AJ and we’ve been through a lot.”
“I don’t care. I told you a long time ago that I would be here for you through anything. I made that promise to you.”
“But you don’t owe me that promise anymore.”
“I want to keep that promise. If that’s one thing I do, I want to keep that.” AJ turned to face her and grabbed her hands. “Please Kat, I’m begging you. Talk to me.”
Seeing AJ that upset finally broke down the last bit of the wall she was trying to hold up.
“I’m scared AJ. I’m scared that if I don’t do the surgery, I’ll die and leave Jake behind. I’m scared that if I have the surgery, there could be a complication and I would still die.” Kat paused and wiped the tears from her eyes. “I’m afraid to die.”
“You’re not going to die.”
“You can’t say that AJ. You don’t know what’s going to happen.”
“Yes I do and you’re not going to leave us.”
“Even with the best doctors…”
“You’ll have the best doctors. I don’t care how much it costs for that to happen but you will have everything you need.”
“Thank you for promising that but it’s not your issue to worry about.”
“You are my issue Kat. You are my reason to worry. You and I have a son and I don’t want to lose you. I can’t raise Jake by myself and I don’t want to.”
Kat wiped the tears from her eyes and laughed softly. “You don’t give up do you?”
“No I don’t and you should know that by now.” AJ said, smiling for the first time that night.
“I agreed to do the surgery AJ and I’m sorry for not telling you about everything sooner. I’m not sure what else I can do.”
“You could do one more thing.”
“Move in with me.”