Home > The Storm (The Storm #3.5)(10)

The Storm (The Storm #3.5)(10)
Author: Samantha Towle


“When can we meet him?”

“I’m flying out to New York tomorrow to see Bob. Then, I’m taking him to meet Storm. I guess…we can arrange for something after that. We just have to take this one slowly.”

Tipping his head back, Tom presses the heels of his hands to his eyes, rubbing at them.

This has hit him hard—about as hard as it hit me. Denny is struggling, too. He’s just always been able to handle shit better than Tom and I can.

“You doing okay?” I reach over and squeeze Tom’s shoulder.

“Yeah.” He drops his hands, blowing out a breath. “I just—fuck. It’s just surreal, you know? I mean, I know Jonny’s gone, but it’s like getting a part of him back.”

“I know, man.” I give his shoulder one last squeeze and then remove my hand.

“Does he look like Jonny?” Tom asks.

“I don’t know.” I shake my head. “I haven’t seen a picture of him.”

“Why now?” Denny pipes up. “Why is the mother just coming forward now? Does she want money?”

My eyes meet with Denny’s. “She’s dying.”

“Jesus fucking Christ,” Denny exhales.

“Yeah.” I know what he’s thinking. Storm’s mother is dying, and now, he’s going to find out that his father is already dead.

“She’s the only family he has…well, had,” I add.

“Damn fucking right, had. He has us now. We’re his family.” Tom slams his hand down on the table.

“Will Storm live with Bob?” Denny asks me.

“Honestly, I don’t know. Everything has happened so fast. I just don’t know. And it’s not that Bob wouldn’t want him ’cause I know he would, but he’s old, and he’s not well. I don’t know if he could take on a teenager.”

“Then, he’ll come and live with one of us.”

My eyes go to Tom—not in surprise, but because he’s spoken the words that have been circling around in my mind since I found out Storm was Jonny’s.

“We’re not leaving Jonny’s kid to fend for himself,” Tom says, “or to have him end up in some goddamn foster home. No fucking way. He’s Jonny’s kid, and that makes him ours, too. Jonny would have wanted us to look after him. You know he would have.”

“I know, man. And we will. You’re not saying anything I haven’t been thinking myself.”

“Then, what do we do?” Denny asks. “This kid doesn’t know us. He’s about to lose his mother. He’s gonna be struggling. And him coming to live with a bunch of strange people…it’s not gonna be easy on him.”

Denny is always the voice of reason.

“None of this is gonna be easy for him. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have the luxury of choice. Honestly, I don’t know what we can do.” I blow out a breath. “We can’t just charge in there like bulls and make demands or claims on him. But you are right. I guess…just let me go there tomorrow with Bob and meet the mother and Storm, and then we’ll go from there. Agreed?”

“Agreed,” they say in unison.

“How you doing?” I glance over at Bob, who is sitting beside me in the backseat of the black Mercedes that Dave hired to drive us in while we’re in New York.

We’re on our way to Queens to meet Tiffany. Well, I say meet, but, apparently, I met her a long time ago. But this will be Bob’s first time meeting her.

We don’t get to meet Storm yet. He’s at school at the moment. Tiffany wanted to speak to us before he gets home.

I get that. He’s her kid. She’ll want to protect him as best she can.

I’m itching to meet Storm. I want to know what he’s like—if he’s like Jonny, if he looks like his father, if he loves music. Does he play the guitar like Jonny did? I mean, it was in Jonny’s blood. For Jonny, playing the guitar was as easy as breathing. Did Storm inherit that?

I have so many questions floating around in my head, questions that can only be answered from meeting Storm.

Bob and I haven’t really talked about what’s going to happen when it comes to Storm’s living arrangements—not that we’ve had much time to talk. I flew from LA to New York, and then we picked up Bob from his house. Now, we’re driving to Astoria in Queens where Tiffany and Storm live in an apartment above a bakery.

Tiffany is receiving in-house care, and her best friend is helping take care of Storm.

Bob turns his head from the window to look at me. “I’m okay.” He shrugs. “I just…I wanna meet him, you know?”

“Yeah, I know,” I breathe out the words.

“Thanks for coming with me, Jake.”

I slide my eyes to him. “You don’t have to thank me. I’d have come even if you didn’t want me to.”

I give him a small smile, and he chuckles.

Then, he turns his face forward and blows out a tired-sounding breath, linking his hands together. “I don’t know what to do, Jake.”

“’Bout what?”

He gives me a quick look before turning his eyes away. “Storm.”

The one word tells me everything he’s concerned about.

I knew Bob was sick. His heart is weak, and he’s old.

He’s aged so much since Lyn passed.

When I saw him half an hour ago, for the first time in a year, I felt guilty. I should have been around for him more. It’s easy to forget when I’m happy and busy with Tru and the kids. But seeing Bob now, I feel like I’ve failed Jonny again.

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