”Eve…” Bruno whispered in her ear kissing her again. ”You’re hot when you’re angry.”
”Shut up.” she laughed pulling away from him. He grabbed her wrapping his arms around her kissing her again. His hands moved down toward her butt. She squirmed feeling his hands all over her. She moved her hands to the bottom of his hat touching his hair. She felt him run his fingers along her back lightly making her tingle. She sighed heavily feeling him grab her by the waist to take her into the bedroom. Halfway through the hallway they heard the door open with several small footsteps following behind. ”Shit.” she said seeing Lucy, Emery and one of her brothers, Jonathon, walk in the living room.
”Mom…your shirt is on the floor..were you doing laundry again?” she asked.
”I can get our clothes too, Evie. My mom said she didn’t want to do laundry…” Emery said.
”I was singing her a song, Lu-lu.” Bruno said watching her feeling his pants.
”But he was really going to the bathroom…” she told him lifting her eyebrow at him.
”Oh..yeah..right..I haven’t gone to the bathroom since this afternoon. I’m doing the potty dance…” he clapped his hands imitating a commercial dancing away from her.
Evie took the kids to the kitchen table handing them snacks getting them settled.
”Evie…is that Bruno Mars?” Jonathon asked.
”I told you, Jonathon!” Lucy yelled.
”Whatever.” the 8 year old said. ”I’m going to get Anthony. He’ll want to see him. He won’t believe me.”
”Jonathan..your mom and Bianca know. They’ll meet him someday. Why don’t you take his sister home and tell your mom about it, okay?” she answered leading the two to the door.
”Fine. But we better get backstage passes when he has a concert. Or else I’m telling Lucy all about what you two were doing….” Jonathan said pointing to her sweater on the floor.
”Get out!” she laughed at him pointing to the door. ”Lucy..let’s get you ready for bed…”
”Lucy…go with your mom..I’ll be there in a second…” Bruno said hugging her.
”Okay..fine…” she answered running into the bathroom to take a bath. They heard a low scream coming from the bathroom as they lagged behind her. Evie ran the last few steps into the bathroom seeing her daughter holding her hand with tears running down her eyes.
”Lucy!” Evie exclaimed bending down to hold her hand. ”Did you turn on the hot water?”
She nodded her head holding her hand with tears still in her eyes. ”It hurt, mom.” Lucy said.
”Come on…we’ll get you in there so it doesn’t hurt…and please remember not to touch the faucet. You don’t want to get burned again…” she said lifting her daughter’s clothes up testing the water with her hand lifting her into the bathtub putting bubble bath in the water watching her daughter throw the water all over the place even onto her. ”Hey!” she said laughing. ”Not when we have company, Luc.” Lucy laughed watching Bruno who had sat down on the toilet watching them. Lucy threw the soap at him catching him off guard.
”So we’re playing like that, huh, Lucy?” he laughed taking some soap from the tub placing it on his chin. ”That’s all you and your mom are ever gonna get from me.”
”I’ll be right back…” Evie said standing up touching Bruno’s chin. She went into the kitchen and cleaned everything up from the kids in the house and placed her books back where they belonged. She took a deep breath sitting on the couch. So this is what it feels like to have someone help you. She thought to herself closing her eyes. She laid her head back listening to Bruno start to sing about taking a bath and Lucy laughing with him. I should get up but I don’t think I am…she thought to herself losing herself in their voices.
Bruno helped Lucy out of the bathtub wrapping her in the giant pink towel made to look like a pig and led her into the bedroom pulling something out of a drawer. ”No, Bruno. Not that. You don’t know…” she told him grabbing another shirt.
”Oh…okay…” he replied watching her put on the shirt.
”Now read me a story.” she said jumping in her bed. He looked at her confused by her demand. ”Please?” she gave him puppy dog eyes.
”Okay…” he said grabbing a book laying on the floor. ”Or do you want to tell me a story?” he said pointing to the book.
”No..you tell me.” she said. ”But wait…Bruno…when do you leave again?” she asked.
”In two weeks, Lu-lu.” he said with a sad face.
”Bruno…I’m sad. I don’t want you to leave.” she told him. ”I don’t want you to leave ever.”
”Oh, Lucy. It’s okay. I’ll be here…” he said pointing to her heart.
”But Brunoooo…” she whined. ”You won’t forget about us will you? My mom said that you’ll forget us because of all the girls…”
”Oh, Lucy. No. I love you and your mom. Those girls are nothing compared to the two of you….” Bruno said honestly.
”Bruno…how much do you love us?” she asked him.
”I love you….” he paused holding out his arms showing her his tattoos. ”this much…”
”You do? That’s a lot!” she said.
”I know…it is a lot.” he answered wrapping his arms around her kissing her head. ”Now, go to sleep and I will see you tomorrow.”
”Okay…but Bruno I love you more than that.” she told him watching him stand up.
”Good night, Lucy.” he smiled turning off the light walking back to the living room seeing Evie curled up in a ball at the end of the couch. Damnit. He thought to himself. He picked up a quilt from the floor placing it on her.
”Bruno?” she asked.
”Yeah, baby?” he answered sitting next to her.
”I don’t know what I would do without you in my life.” she replied.
Evie sat down in front of the bathroom mirror in a fancy chair at Bruno’s house. ”Bruno…why are you leavvvviinnnngggg?” she whined.
”Because I have to.” he said laying his head on hers looking at her in the mirror. ”You are so beautiful.” he said walking away pulling on a jacket. She blushed at his comment standing up to watch him put on his shoes. She sat down on the edge of the bed next to him putting on her high heels. She Stood up dancing a little in the shoes. ”I don’t like it when you’re taller than me.” he told her.
”I’m sorry. I can chop of my legs for you.” she told him feeling his hands run against her knees making her laugh. ”Stop, stop, stop! I need my legs!”
”Okay, okay..fine..let’s go…” he said leading her out the door.
”Bruno….how crazy is this pre-tour party going to be?” she asked sliding into the car.
”It’s going to be crazier than anything you’ve ever seen before.” he winked at her.
”Oh god. Why are we dating? I don’t know if I can handle all this craziness.” she said to him.
”Okay..we’ll do something not crazy when I come home in June.” he told her.
”God, June. That sounds like forevvverrrrr….” she whined.
”It’s 3 months.” he told her.
”It’s really not me that I’m worried about. It’s Lucy.” she answered. ”Mt four year old loves you more than anything in the world. She’s already cried twice after you left the apartment this morning.”
”I don’t know what to do for her, Eve. I know she cried. It’s just something…”
”That you’ve never had to deal with. I know. I haven’t either.” she sighed.
”We’ll figure it out.” he told her squeezing her hand pulling into the parking lot. ”Holy crap…look at those photographers.” he pointed to the VIP entrance.
”Just put your head down and keep walking. That’s all you can do.” she told him getting out of the car with her. She felt his hands start to sweat and his body tense against hers.
”Thank you…” he said squeezing her hand back.
”That’s what I’m here for.” she smiled behind him as they walked through the crowd with people screaming at him. ”You have to go talk to those girls…” she told him. ”I’ll see you inside.” she walked away from him toward the front door.
”But…” he started.
”Do it.” she smiled at him watching him walk toward the screaming girls. She walked into the club identifying the VIP section. She hugged several people and said hello taking a drink from the bar.
”Where’s Brunz?” she heard someone ask her.
”Well, I wouldn’t have come by myself…” Evie laughed pointing to the door where he was walking in.
”Eve….” Carrie pulled her aside from the crowd. The two were on good terms. She had stopped speaking to Sean after Evie told her the whole story on the plane back to Los Angeles. She sympathized and realized speaking to him probably wasn’t a good thing. He had threatened her after she told him that she wasn’t going to spy on Evie anymore. Carrie called Evie scared of him. Evie had to calm her down even having Carrie come to her apartment for the night so she wouldn’t get hurt.
”What’s going on, Car?” she asked.
”Look at my text…” she said handing Evie her phone.
”He’s coming here? Why?” Evie asked in response to Sean telling Carrie that he would see her at the club.
”Well, I didn’t tell him it was a Bruno thing..so….” Carrie said.
”He can’t be here. He just can’t.” Evie said.
”I know. But he’s downstairs right now…” Carrie said to Evie.
”I can’t be here…if he’s here…” she walked over to Bruno who was sitting on a big leather couch laughing with someone. I can’t stress him out right now. I can’t. I just…
”Evie? What’s wrong?” he asked seeing her hands shake moving the drink in her hand. He took the drink from her walking her to the corner of the roped off section.
”Sean is here….” she told him. ”I don’t want to stress you out…I’m gonna go home…Jess is gonna take me home and then come back…”
”Eve…you can’t let him ruin your life. He probably doesn’t even know you’re here. And if he does find you…we get security and tell them he’s in violation of his restraining order…” he said confidently.
”You’re right….” she answered hugging him. ”Thank you.” she whispered in his ear. He pulled away from their hug leading her back to the couch.
”Don’t let him run your shit, Evie.” he told her before they met the big crowd. ”But wait…you have to come downstairs for when we perform…” he said.
”I’ll be okay, Bru.” she said taking her drink back this time not shaking. She reassured him by smiling back at him touching his leg.
They continued talking for some time with Bruno interrupting the conversation by dancing with Evie at the couch. She laughed at him forgetting about what Carrie had said. ”Hey…I have to go downstairs..come with…” he said pulling her with him behind his small band.
”Okay..okay…” she laughed behind him. ”But I can’t fall in these shoes.” she told him.
”I gotchu.” he told her not turning around. They were followed by the rest of the VIP section who moved down to another roped off area in the front of the floor. Bruno let go of her kissing her lightly before going backstage. ”Eve..stay close to Jeremy…you’ll be safe.” his eyes moved toward the back of the club where he found Sean standing talking to another group of girls.
”I will.” she said watching him walk away turning around to look in the general direction Sean was standing making accidental eye contact with him. She rolled her eyes at him walking near Jeremy.
”Shit…he’s coming over here…” she said to Carrie who was standing next to her.
”Shut up! He is….hi.” she said to him.
”Hello, ladies. Are you having a good night?” he asked.
”Sean…you need to go back to where you were. This is like 4 feet…” she said starting to walk away.
”I was just coming to say hello, Eve. But if you want to make an issue of it…go ahead. Go get someone. Or even better…call Christina because obviously I can’t be anywhere where you are..even if it’s more than 500 feet away from you.”
”I just might…” she said pulling her phone from her small clutch.
”Damn..she’s such an instigator…” Carrie leaned over to Jeremy.
”Eve…come on…” Carrie said pulling her toward the roped off area. Sean pulled her back making her struggle with both arms.
”Where’s the call, Eve? Where is it?” he asked.
”I’m not going to call her…but please just go back with Jayson and Tre…please…” she started to feel her eyes start to well up with tears through his nails digging into her arm. ”Please Sean….I’m being nice….” she paused squinting in pain. ”tonight.” she turned around looking at Bruno’s friend Jeremy.
”Dude…really…just let her go…we don’t need to start anything tonight.” Jeremy told Sean reaching toward Sean’s arm. Sean flipped his hand back catching everyone around them off guard making them all turn around to see what was going on.
”Bruno!” Carrie screamed. He turned around barely hearing them holding a mic in his hand. Carrie pleaded with him with her eyes.
”You’re nothing but a groupie whore. You’re a fucking bitch, Geneva. Go ahead…” he lifted his arm up nearing her face. ”call Christina.” his hand hit her face hard making her wobble in her heels falling toward the stage hitting the back of her head on the stage.
Bruno ran to Evie holding onto her feeling blood drip from the back of her head falling on his shirt. ”Eve! Eve! Wake up!” he exclaimed leaning toward her placing her at the edge of the floor. He looked over at Sean who was walking toward him.
”Dude..I wouldn’t do that…” Jeremy stepped in between them.
”Whatever…” he kicked Evie’s feet walking away escorted by a security guard.
”We have to get her to the hospital….” Bruno said. ”We have to…”
”Bruno….Brandon already called the ambulance…” Carrie said sitting down next to him watching Evie’s slow breaths.
”Eve…” Bruno leaned his head down toward her. ”please wake up….” he said taking off his jacket placing it behind her head feeling the blood all over. Ewww…the blood. He thought looking down at her. She suddenly started to move her head feeling the pain shooting through her body.
”Owww….” she cried looking up at Bruno. ”Holy shit…” she tried to smile.
”Shhh…Evie…just….shhh. We have to get you to the hospital…” he said quietly over the music.
They saw two paramedics walk toward the roped off area that they had placed her in.
”Can you help her up, sir?” they asked.
Evie nodded her head leaning on Bruno and Ray who were helping her out. The rest of them followed out the door behind them. ”I don’t think….oh…no….I can’t….” she said falling toward Bruno losing consciousness.
One of the paramedics started helping them to the ambulance opening the door to put Evie on the bed. Bruno looked at them with concern. ”I can’t go can I?” he asked.
”No, sir. You aren’t married are you?” he asked.
”Oh..no….no…” he said looking down at her arm with the charm bracelet he had bought her and Lucy.
”You can follow right behind us, though.” the paramedic answered.
”Okay..okay…” he answered walking toward the car quickly.
”Bro..you can’t go by yourself…” Phil said. Brandon came up behind them.
”We just canceled.” he told them.
”Well, I think that’s the only thing we can do…” Phil said watching Bruno walking quickly to the car.
”Go with him…drive him…” Brandon told Phil.
”Give me your keys…” Phil demanded.
”We have to get there…” Bruno responded.
”We will…” Phil told him.
They got in the car with Bruno feeling all the rage he had ever felt about to explode in the car. He screamed loudly trying to figure out what he was going to say. ”Does he just wake up every day thinking how am I going to fuck my ex up? Fuck.”
”He’s like the biggest asshole ever, dude.” Phil answered after a few minutes pullng into the hospital.
”We leave tomorrow morning…” Bruno said in a sad tone following Phil toward the door. ”Excuse me?” he asked a nurse at the front. ”Can you tell me where Geneva Wilson is?”
”She’s…ohhh..she’s a the third floor in surgery.” she said.
”Can we go up there?” Phil asked.
”She will be in….room 4507 when she’s done in after 2 hours…” the nurse answered.
”2 hours? What the hell happened?” Bruno asked.
”Sir…that’s something I can’t tell you…”
”I’m her fucking boyfriend…tell me what happened!” he exclaimed. ”I mean…please…” he pleaded.
”Sir, I would be breaking the law…”she told him.
”I don’t care! Tell me why!” he yelled.
”Bruno…come on…we’ll wait for Katie…” Phil said pulling him away.
”But…Eve….” he said sadly sitting down in the chair.
”Bruno!” Katie came running in the hospital. ”What happened? What happened?”
”I don’t know….” he said. ”She’s in surgery though….” he answered.
Phil stood up starting to tell Katie what happened. ”Sean was there….and he was holding onto her arm way to tight…Jeremy got in the way of it and then he reached around Jeremy hitting her so hard that she hit the back of the stage they were standing by….”
Katie gasped realizing how serious all of this was. ”He wasn’t supposed to be near her…”
”I don’t know what happened…” Bruno said. ”I told her I would protect her…and I didn’t…”
”Bruno…” Katie put her hand on his shoulder rubbing it. ”It’s not your fault.” she said walking to the nurse.
”I’m Geneva’s mother. Can you tell me what happened?” she asked.
”I will have someone come out to see you in a moment…” the nurse answered. ”Please have a seat…”
She sat down next to Bruno who had his head in his hands shaking his legs nervously. A petite blonde nurse came up to them. ”Hi, I’m Felicia. Mrs. Wilson…come with me…”
”The boys can’t come?” she asked.
”I have no approval from your daughter ma’am.” she answered.
”Oh…” she stood up walking off to a small office sitting down.
”Your daughter suffered from a rather large bruise to the back of her head. She’s in surgery removing the pressure.” Felicia told her. ”She should be okay.”
”Wait…he hit her that hard?” Katie asked.
”It wasn’t the initial impact Mrs. Wilson…it was her fall.” Felicia answered.
”Can we go see her?” Katie asked.
”Yes…you all can come…” Felicia said motioning for Bruno and Phil to follow her. Phil waved them off saying he would wait in the waiting area for them.
”Bruno…you can’t be upset at yourself…” Katie told him.
”I could have stopped him.” he shook his head still upset at himself. ”And I can’t stay…” he said.
”It’s okay, Bruno. You know she understands.” Katie said following Felicia to the room the other nurse had given them. Bruno looked at Evie stretched out on the bed with needles and wires all over. He could see a scar on the back of her head near an area of greasy hair. Katie stepped back sitting in a chair away from them
”Eve…” he leaned down near her ear holding her hand.
”Bruno….quit being such a baby.” she told him.
”But Evie…I could have stopped it.” he told her.
”Bru…he was going to do it no matter what. He was going to find a way to hurt me.” she answered him. ”Please don’t feel that way. You have such a big day ahead of you. Please don’t be upset. Please…”
”I’ll do it for you, Eve.” he said kissing her on the forehead.
”Owww…” she laughed. ”Mom…what time is it?” she asked.
”It’s 5…” she answered.
”Bruno…go home. Go to sleep. You leave in 6 hours.” Evie told Bruno.
”For you, Geneva.” he leaned down near her bruised face looking at her in the eyes. She cracked a pained smile at him. ”Be strong, boo.” he said kissing her quickly standing up hugging Katie saying good bye. ”Oh, and I think you ruined my jacket.”
”Get out!” she yelled at him with a smile. +”Ouch…+” she rubbed the back of her head closing her eyes remembering his face as he walked out the door. Shit. 3 months.
Evie sat in a familiar place in the court room in between Christina and Craig. She had cut her hair to shoulder length and gotten it highlighted to hide the scar from that Monday evening. ”Eve, hang in there. This should be open and shut this morning. And then we can go back to doing what you need to be doing, school.” Craig told her watching the edge of room where a police officer had brought Sean into the room handcuffed. He stared at Evie.
”I see your boy couldn’t make it.” he snapped at her.
”His schedule is none of your business, Sean.” Evie snapped back.
”Evie…stop.” Craig held onto her hand.
”Okay. Fine.” she answered.
The judge walked in the room going over the case briefly. ”So, the last time we were here Mr. Greene was subject to random UAs, supervised visits and had a restraining order placed. Since then he’s had three visits with his daughter and has violated his restraining order resulting in misdemeanor Domestic Violence charges. Mr. Blum, please catch us up with your side of the story.” he pointed to Evie’s lawyer.
”Your honor…Mr. Greene and Ms. Wilson were at the same large event this past Monday. He was not in violation of the restraining order by being in the same building with Ms. Wilson, however, he did violate the order by approaching Ms. Wilson in the middle of the evening resulting in the above mentioned violent altercation. He has also been reported that Mr. Greene instigates several highly abusive conversations while visiting with his daughter.”
”And Mr. Greene? Can you tell us what happened?” the judge asked pointing to his lawyer.
”Mr. Greene has visited with his daughter several times coming into supervised contact with Ms. Wilson. He states he has remain cordial with Ms. Wilson until she brings up the issues in the case to include Mr. Hernandez and his relationship with his daughter which he does not approve of.”
”I thought we resolved the Hernandez situation?” the judge asked Craig.
”It has been resolved, your honor. His approved background check is on file and on the record.” Craig said looking at his opposing counsel.
”Then what is the problem with Ms. Wilson with this man, Mr. Greene. I want to hear about it/”
The room was silenced for several seconds as they waited for Sean to speak. ”He’s not a good guy. I know I’m not perfect. But, this guy is just a famous rock star that’s going to leave both Eve and Lucy….” Sean stated.
Shit I want to yell at him so much. I can’t. I have more class than that. She thought to herself watching the judge. ”Do your feelings justify your past actions, though, Mr. Greene?”
”She knows what she is doing. I told her I didn’t want her around him. I don’t want my daughter with him.”
”Well, after these past actions, Mr. Greene I don’t feel as though you have much room to say this guy is a bad guy. I haven’t even met him yet. But, he has yet to break Ms. Wilson’s nose, leave bruises and scratches on her arms or verbally abuse her…”
”Your honor…” Sean’s lawyer started. ”Mr. Greene is still coping with his own traumatic experiences and continues to work toward resolving these issues.”
”What issues are these?” the judge asked. ”And why have they not been brought up yet?”
Oh fuck no. He would not make that argument. God damnit. Evie thought to herself looking at her lawyer.
”Your honor, Mr. Greene was injured in a multiple car accident in 2007 resulting in severe personality changes.” Sean looked down embarrassed by what was going on. Oh God. He looks like he did before. I’m sorry…I’m sorry Sean… Evie caught his eyes mouthing I’m sorry to him. He shook his head hurt by the proceedings.
”That’s been quite some time and the couple has yet to resolve these issues? I fail to see how this is elevant.” the judge said.
”Your honor…it was unfortunate timing as Ms. Wilson was 5 months pregnant when the accident occurred.” the lawyer answered. The judge looked over to Sean for supporting evidence.
”Mr. Greene?” he asked.
”We had a good relationship before then. We lived together while we finished school…I wasn’t who I was before. I still am not who I was then. I’m trying to deal with the changes. I’m sorry.” Sean said in a heartfelt voice. ”I just can’t….”
”Mr. Greene, we all understand the troubles, but sir, you have had more than enough chances to deal with these issues. Ms. Yates, has it been determined that Mr. Greene is a danger to Lucy?”
”Yes your honor. We are moving to terminate rights.” Christina answered.
Evie looked over at Sean who was about to cry. Where was this Sean before? I see him now. I just want to hug him….she thought to herself. Do I stop this? She looked at the judge who was trying to decide on his next move.
”And Ms. Wilson what is your opinion?” he asked.
”I agree with Christina.” she said through her teeth. She could feel herself trying not to cry.
”Ms. Wilson? Please take your time to think about this.” the judge answered.
She looked down at the floor trying to decide what she was going to say. She’s going to have a good-bye visit just like mine. In that fucking white room. They’re going to take a picture and that’s it. She’s never going to see her grandmother or her aunt again…but…where would I be without this happening….”If they think it’s the best option than it has to be done.” she said rubbing her head. ”It might be the hardest thing in the world to do, but it has to be done. I’m sorry Sean. I really am. Michelle, Stacy…” Evie turned around to see his family in shock. ”It’s for the best.”
”Then it will be up to the parties to discuss the proceedings. The termination hearing will be scheduled for April 2nd.” the judge said. ”Next case? Let’s keep moving today.”
Evie sat down on her couch later that evening after Lucy had gone to bed and she finished highlighting depositions for the following day. She stopped looking up at a picture Sean had taken of Lucy when she was a baby- after his accident. They had taken pictures to try to bring back his otherwise infectious personality. She picked it up rubbing her fingers along the picture making her start to cry. Why did this happen? We would be so happy together right now if this hadn’t happened. None of this. We would have gotten married and we would have lived together happily ever after…she lost herself in the thoughts and tears jolted out of them by hearing Bruno’s Heartless ringtone.
”Bruno?” she asked.
”Hey beautiful.” he answered her. ”What’s wrong?” he asked her.
”Bruno..I never told you what Sean was like before did I?” she asked him.
”No…but all that matters now is that he’s an asshole who shouldn’t be near you or Lucy.” he answered.
”Bruno…he got in a car accident and really hurt his head when I was pregnant. Before that he was amazing….”
”Wait….tell me again.” he asked.
”We were really good together. He supported my law school dream and I supported whatever he was doing then…and we were planning on getting married. The typical go to college, meet someone and get married the summer after you graduate. He was an Alpha and I was a Beta…it was meant to happen…and then…of course by accident I got pregnant. He was going to take care of me. We had it all figured out…but February 3rd….he was with Joe and Danny…and they were in a car accident. He wasn’t wearing a seat belt and were in a Jeep…he was thrown all over the place and really hurt his head…he didn’t lose his memory or anything…but he was just not who he was before. Like he would get angry but he would just walk away and we’d talk about it…but then it changed. And we were together when Lucy was a baby…and that’s when it all just…Bruno….they terminated his rights. But I saw the other Sean today. He was sorry for everything…” she sobbed through the phone. ”I know we wouldn’t still be together. Something would have happened. He hooked up with a lot of girls. I called him out on it..but he always won me back…oh my god Bruno. What did I do? What if he is sorry and he is the old Sean? I would feel horrible. And Lucy…she won’t be able to see him until she’s 18….”
”Eve…I don’t know what to say. Why didn’t you say that before?” he asked.
”Because…it was stupid…” she answered.
”Eve..I’m sorry you feel that way…but you have to know it’s the right thing to do. There will always be a place for the one you lost. But, Geneva..the Sean everyone knows now is not safe for anyone to be around, especially you and Lucy. You know that, baby.” he said sweetly.
”I know it is….but it doesn’t make it any easier.” she told him.
”Eve..to move on you have to move on.” he told her.
”I know. You’re right.” she answered wiping her tears from her eyes.