“It’s nine am in the morning. Do you know where your partner is? Probably not, since he just punched his brother in the nose,” the female voice said on the other end.
Jack came awake with a bang. “He did what? Where is he now?”
Sarah let out a sigh. “Where the hell do you think he is since we live in Vancouver?” she snapped, at her soon-to-be brother-in-law.
“I’m on my way,” Jack said. “If I come to your place will he be there, or has he gone somewhere else?” Jack was quietly praying the police hadn’t been involved.
“Yes, he’s here and I have a couple of his buddies here. Jack, I don’t want to call the police; I don’t want them involved. If he takes off, I’ll text you and let you know.” Sarah said. “Jason Randal Copeland stop kicking that damn door,” she yelled. “Drive safe but get here fast. I’ve got to go,” she added and hung up the phone.
Getting a bag of Ice out of the freezer, Sarah walked over to her husband and handed him the cloth covered bag. Then, taking the old one off Shane’s nose she looked at his eyes as they started to turn black and bluish. “I don’t think it’s broke,” she told him. “What did you do?” she asked, sitting down beside him.
Jack quickly got dressed, contacted Kay to open the shop and got on his bike. He was in Vancouver within 4 hours.
He walked up the path and knocked on the door.
Jay’s oldest nephew opened the door and stepped back to let Jack in. “Dad’s in the basement, he’s totally pissed,” Steve told him as he shut the door “Do you want me to go get mom?” he asked, as Benji came up behind him.
“Why is Jay mad at dad?” Benji asked, behind his brother.
Jack nodded to Steve and knelt down to Benji. “Do you get mad at Steve?” he asked, and when Benji nodded shyly, he added, “Well, your Dad and your Uncle Jay are brothers; sometimes they disagree and get mad at each other.” He saw that Benji understood, “If I was you I wouldn’t punch Steve. That is no way to handle a disagreement. Understand?”
He looked up as Sarah entered the room, “Where is he?” he asked.
Jay was pacing back and forth in his old room, now set up as a home gym. The punching bag was swinging back and forth while Jay shook his hands out; sweat was running down his back despite the slight chill in the air. He knew his sister-in-law well enough by now to guess she’d called Jack to come and calm him down. Tom and Andy were sitting on the step watching their buddy. Sarah had told them both to make sure he stayed where he was, and that was what they were intent on doing. When Jay walked over to the steps, Andy stood and Tom got up and took the step behind his buddy.
“Let me past,” Jay told them.
“No,” Andy said.
“You know I can take you out,” Jay threatened.
“Yeah I know but, then you’ll have to take Tom out and we both know you won’t do that,” Andy told him, jerking his head back toward Tom. Jay let out a moan, turned around, went to the chair in the corner and flopped down. Putting his head in his hands he let out a sigh.
“Am I allowed to join this discussion?” Jack asked from the top of the steps.
Both men on the steps jumped and looked behind them, they both got up and stepped back so Jack could come into the room. “He’s all yours, I think he hurt his foot kicking the door,” Andy told him. “Hey bud, call me when you can,” Andy told Jay, as he and Tom left the two men together.
After an uneasy silence, Jay appealed to his partner. “I came here to talk to Shane, man to man, bro to bro, friend to friend, to let him know what you and I do. Well, discipline works for us, and I was ok with him knowing; it’s not like as soon as I saw him I punched him, “ Jay told the floor. “Is he alright?” he asked, looking up at Jack.
“He’s got a black eye and luckily his nose is not broken,” Jack replied. “Jay, look at me. I’m not mad at you. I’ve talked to Shane and I really understand why you did it but Sarah is pretty ticked at you.”
Jay shook his head no, he could not bring himself to look at his Sweets; he knew the man he loved was disappointed in him. He just pushed his face into the crook of Jack’s neck, and took a deep breath. “Yeah they were supposed to get the picture done today,” he mumbled. “Sarah swatted me,” he confessed.
“Picture?” Jack asked, confused.
Jay thumped his head against Jack’s chest. “Family pictures they do every year,” he said. “Is she still upset?” he asked, still not wanting to look at up.
“Let’s go up and see,” Jack replied.
“In a minute.” Jay took Jack by hand and walked over to the chair in the corner. After Jack sat Jay sat on the arm of the chair, Jay asked, “I want to know if we are ok with this, I mean, whether I’m I going to get my butt stomped for this.” Jay finally looked up at his lover.
Jack looked at his lover for a minute, “No,” he said, “I understand what triggered this. I don’t condone what you did, but I do understand why. I can’t punish you for something I might have done. After all I did beat up Mac when he came visiting.”
Jay just looked at him, “You were protecting me at that time, but I do understand, I think. As long as we are ok, I’m ready to face Sarah and, er umm, you’re not going to let her swat me again, are you?” he asked as he got to his feet. “Cause her spoon hurts,” Jay said, as he rubbed his backside.
“I’ll protect you,” Jack promised with a smile. He turned serious, “You okay to say sorry to your brother and mean it?”
Jay chewed on his bottom lip a few minutes. He was thinking how to tell his lover, ‘I can’t. Shane taught me, you only say sorry if you mean it. How can I tell Shane I am sorry for hurting him when what he told me hurts a lot worse than any punishment he ever gave me? He’s been there for me, since I was born, and now he won’t even attend my wedding because of the way I choose to live my life with the man I love. I won’t lie to him or you.’ Jay shook his head. “I just want to go home, curl up with you and plan our wedding,” he told Jack.
“Can you tell him what you just told me?” Jack asked gently, “Then we can go home, curl up, and make plans.”
Jay thumped his head against Jack’s chest. “I can try, but I won’t promise,” he told him. Kissing his Sweet’s cheek Jay trudged up the stairs. Shane was sitting at the table with a cold rag on his eye; Shane looked at his brother as he came into the kitchen. Jay could feel his fingers curl into a fist and he swallowed hard, turning around he looked at Jack. “I can’t,” he said with a tightness in his voice. “Sarah, I’m sorry, I’ll call you later,” he told her and the tightness was still noticeable.
“It’s ok, I understand,” she told him, pulling him to her. The hug was quick as Jay pulled away and headed for the door.
“Jack, I’ll be outside.”
“Jack, he doesn’t need to be riding like this. Stay here in the guest house or at least in a motel,” she told him. “He’ll crash, I know it,” she said, as she watched him turn to leave.
“He wants to go home.” Jack replied quietly. I’ll be right beside him. If I see any dangerous or self destructive behavior I’ll step in. However I will check he is okay to ride. I don’t want him to crash anymore than you do.”
“No wonder he calls you Jackassson sometimes, you are as stubborn as he is. Do you want to bury him or marry him? It takes a split second to die on a bike.” Sarah just shook her head when she saw Jack raise an eyebrow at her. “Call me as soon as you get him home,” she begged.
Jack shrugged on his black leather jacket and walked outside. He walked over to Jay, “Sarah seems to think you need to rest before we ride home,” he said to his young lover. “I need to know if she’s right.”
Jay looked up at Jack who saw that his face was pale in color and wet with tears. He was rubbing his stomach and he looked as if he was going to either pass out or barf. Yet Jay gave him a smile. “I’m fine let’s ride,” he told him, slipping on his helmet.
Jack silently apologized to Sarah.
“No,” Jack said firmly, taking Jay’s helmet off before he could fasten it. “You are not safe and I’m not letting you on a bike until you look 100% better than now.” Sarah was very efficient and it wasn’t long before Jay was in bed sleeping his way to better health. Jack stayed with him until he was sure Jay was fast asleep, he gently closed the door and made his way to the kitchen where he found Shane making coffee.
“What the hell is your problem?” he asked his partner’s brother.
“We don’t swear in this house. My problem is, I want my brother to understand getting married is not a game, it’s something he can’t walk away from. I know he probably won’t have the responsibilities I do, but still he will have responsibilities and when things get rough a marriage can’t be walked away from.” Shane held up his hand to silence Jack, “I’m not done, I understand why he ran from Mac, but he’s still in the same type of relationship. Granted you don’t knock his teeth out when you get mad, or beat him black and blue or break his bones. Trust me, I did step in over Mac but I was told there was nothing I could do, except to murder the guy, but this is still the same game: I’m bad, spank me, then screw me,” Shane told him. “I cannot grasp the concept of it,” he said, pouring two cups of coffee and handing Jack one. “Now can you explain it to me so I can grasp it?”
“No,” Jack replied calmly. “It’s true we have a discipline partnership, the key in there is partnership. It’s actually Jay who has the power. He can stop at any time he wants. At the moment he feels he stills needs it. All we want to do is formalize our relationship, and Jay wants one of the most important people in his life to attend the ceremony.”
Shane sat in silence. He didn’t now how to word what he wanted to say, fearing that if he said it the wrong way Jack might punch him in the nose.
"Shane cannot accept that his baby brother, the one he raised, is gay," Sarah said from the door and Shane dropped his head in confusion. "He was hoping Jay would ‘wake up’ one day and decide he's straight and live a normal life," she continued. " He will not allow his sons to go to a ‘gay’ wedding ‘cause to him it’s not normal. I've tried to get him to understand but he’s just as stubborn as his brother, " Sarah told Jack as she came into the kitchen and put her arms around Shane’s shoulder. "But that is why we both love a Copeland, right?" she said, giving Jack a smile.
Jack smiled back. Then he looked at Shane. “Look man,” he said, “being gay is not a lifestyle choice, it’s how we’re born. It’s nothing you did, or didn’t do. I promise you the only thing your sons will see is two people, very much in love, exchanging vows. We really want you there.” He left Shane then and went back to Jay, and waited for him to wake up.
Jay was laying on his side. Somehow he’d managed to wiggle out of his shorts while he slept. He opened his eyes when the bed dipped down. "Hey sweets", he gave his lover a smile, doing his best to give the impression he was ok, but his face told another story. "Did you kill him?" he asked.
“Nope,” Jack answered, not fooled for a second. “We talked and the ball is in his court. I’ve left him in Sarah’s gentle hands.” Jack smiled when he saw Jay wince.
Jay moved over and laid his head on his lover’s leg, looking up at his Sweets. "He's not coming, is he?" Seeing the sadness in his lover’s eyes, he continued, "I've done something wrong to piss him off and this is how he punishes me for it. Oh well, his loss. I'll get dressed and then we can head over to Timmy Horton's, split a burger and fries and head home, if that is ok with you. Or we can just head home. I need you to do something for me when we get there," Jay said, sliding out of bed and beginning to get dressed.
“He might come around,” Jack replied, although deep down he thought Shane was a lost cause. “I’m hoping Sarah and the boys will be there, however.” Jack eyed Jay carefully and was glad to see he looked better. “Sounds like a plan,” he replied, shrugging into his jacket and picking up his helmet. “Let’s blow this popstand.”
Jay just shook his head at the saying, found his leathers and helmet and headed towards the door behind his lover, saying goodbye to Sarah and the boys. But then he stopped, walked over and looked at Shane "Sorry bro, but I hope you come around," Jay told him and headed out the door. Shane looked confused at Sarah, but said nothing.
On the way home Jay’s mind was on things other than road or traffic when the traffic slowed down. Not seeing the car stopping in front of him, he almost rear ended it. He quickly maneuvered his Harley between the cars and, coming to an open part of the traffic, Jay quickly made his way to the side of the road, knowing Jack would be there soon.
Jack’s heart almost stopped when he saw the near accident. He pulled over next to Jay and lifted his visor. “We will be discussing this when we get home,” he informed his young lover. “I see any more signs of inattention, you will ride home on a very sore butt, and you won’t see the bike for a month. Your choice. Got it?”
Jay swallowed hard. He knew by look he got there was no talking about it, and there was nothing to be said but the, "Yes, Sir," which he delivered promptly. He closed his eyes and prayed for the first time in a very long time to keep them both safe and his mind clear. Jack decided to make the pace from then on. Jay followed him as if he was a new rider, a bike length apart, his eye on both the guy ahead of him and the road before them. He let out a breath of relief when he saw their home.
Once they were upstairs Jack didn’t waste any time pulling Jay over his knees and baring his ass. “Want to tell me why you’re here?” he asked.
Jay grabbed his squish pillow. "Not paying attention to the road or what was in front of me. But before you start smacking, I want to discuss something," Jay told him, trying to look back at his lover. "Please"
“OK,” Jack replied. “What?”
"Can I at least sit up?" Jay asked, lifting himself up on his hands and looking back at his lover; he hated talking like this. Seeing the NO in his lover face he let out a frustrated breath, "I've been doing some thinking and I think Shane may be right. I need to get a grip on life and grow up, stop being so insecure about things, and we need to live a normal life. I need to stop hanging with my dim witted friends and get a full time job so I can help you out and take more responsibilities around here. I don’t want to be such a burden on you most of the time. Husbands are not supposed to be a burden.”
“You are not a burden,” Jack replied firmly. “What with working at the Post Office in the morning and the garage in the afternoon, you’re basically working full time. I like most of your friends; you just have to stop and think about consequences of actions sometimes. Every time you don’t stop and think you’ll end up in this position again. If you want to stop this aspect in our relationship we can talk after we’ve dealt with the latest infraction.”
"Oh ok," Jay spoke softly, grabbing his pillow again. He buried his face into it and also grabbed the cushion edge.
The spanking that followed was swift but painful.
Once Jay realized the spanking had stopped and Jack was now rubbing his back, he shifted around and grabbed a hold of his lover’s neck. He did his best to calm down as he felt the soft touch of a hand that had hurt so bad earlier, and heard the gently loving words that his Sweets spoke softly in his ear. Jay kicked off his jeans and curled up into his soon-to-be-husband’s lap rubbing his face on the shoulder under him. He gave the man he loved a teary, weak smile. "I love you," he whispered.
“Glad to hear it,” Jack replied. He carried Jay over to the bed and said, “We’ll start planning the wedding ……. Tomorrow.”