"Jordin," Paige said walking into his bedroom, "Jordin, wake up."
"What," he mumbled as he rolled over to face her.
"I am going back to work today and you have practice."
Jordin smiled brightly, he had been dying to get back on the ice.
"Want me to drop you off on my way to the arena?"
"I have to stay late for a meeting, so I'll take my car. Do you want to meet me for dinner later or do you want me to cook when I get home?"
"I'll meet you for dinner, where do you want to go?"
"Sounds good to me, call me and let me know what time to meet you."
Paige looked at her watch, "Shit, I have to go. I'll call you later. Have a good practice."
Jordin smiled as she leaned down to kiss his cheek, "Have a good day at work."
Paige smiled before heading out of the door to head to work. Pulling out her phone, she searched through her phone for Wade's number.
"Hey Paige," Wade said as he answered his phone, "What's up?"
"Can you do me a huge favor and pick Jordin up on your way to practice? I know I sound overprotective but I just want to make sure he's okay."
"Relax," Wade replied, "He's picking me up on his way to the arena."
Paige breathed a sigh of relief that she didn't know she was holding, "Thank you, Wade."
"Anytime," he replied, "I'm here for you guys."
"I'll let you go; I'm on my way to work."
"Eh, work is work. Have a good practice."
"Bye Wade," Paige said ending the call on her iPhone.
Pulling into work, she grabbed her bag and purse out of the trunk before swiping her ID badge to get inside.
Paige smiled as she walked into her office and saw the vase full of roses sitting on her desk. Setting her bag and purse down on the floor, she opened the card that was in front of the vase.
Paige smiled at the image on the front of a small dog holding a heart. She felt herself tear up as she read the words that Jordin wrote on the inside.
Although it may not seem like much, I just wanted you to know how thankful I am that you have been there for me. I could not have asked for a better person in my life, you showed me that there were people in my life who need me and I am forever grateful that you are my friend. We'll beat this together, I know we will. Thank you for putting your life on hold to help me through it, I will never be able to repay you. You will never know how much you mean to me.
Paige wiped the tears away from her eyes and dialed Jordin's number from the phone in her office. When she got his voicemail, she decided to leave him a message telling him how beautiful his gesture was.
The work day was going slow but luckily, Mrs. Fisher herself, Carrie Underwood was stopping by to speak with Paige about her upcoming performance, "How come you're not at practice with that adorable friend of yours," Carrie asked as she sat down in front of Paige's desk.
"I had to come in and catch up on work. I took two week's vacation to take care of him, and I was far behind so I came back to work. There's only so much my assistant can do."
"Mike told me everything and how Brooke left him, he needs someone like you in his life."
"I hope everything works out for him; I'm his sponsor for AA. We have our first meeting on Monday morning."
"Mike can fill in for you if you need to come here."
"I appreciate the offer but I don't want to let Jordin down."
Paige and Carrie fell into conversation about Jordin and Mike going on the road in a week's time. Carrie reassured Paige that Mike would keep an eye on Jordin. Carrie finished her rehearsals and told Paige she'd give her a call sometime.
Paige sighed as her work day came to an end at 8 o'clock that night. She wasn't used to working 12 hour shifts. Sure, she worked long work days but she was exhausted as she drove to the restaurant where Jordin was meeting her.
"Long day," he asked as she sat down at the table in front of him.
"You have no idea," she replied taking a drink of the water in his glass that he had held out for her.
"I ordered already, I hope that's okay."
"It's fine," Paige replied, "Thank you."
"Did you get your flowers?"
Paige smiled, "I did, and they’re beautiful. Thank you, very much. I will always be here for you, Jordin."
Jordin leaned over and gave her a hug, "I don't deserve a friend like you."
Paige kissed his cheek, "No Jordin, I don't deserve a friend like you."
Jordin smiled slightly, "I ordered your usual."
"Thank you, I'm glad because I'm starving."
Their food came and they ate while making small talk about Jordin's excitement for his comeback came in the coming nights.
"You'll be there, right," he asked as they walked to their cars.
"Of course, I will," Paige smiled when they got to her car first.
"Meet me back at the house," Jordin said, "I don't want to go home yet. Drop your car off at the house and we'll go see a movie or something."
"Okay," Paige agreed, "See you there."
Jordin watched as Paige pulled into the garage and returned talking on her cell phone. She smiled as she opened the passenger side door, “Hold on one second, I’ll ask him,” she said turning to Jordin while pulling the phone away from her ear, “Josh and Megan need a babysitter this weekend for Kayden. The girl that usually babysits has the flu and no one else will do it on such short notice, is it okay if he stays with us until Monday night?”
Jordin smiled, “Of course.”
“Have him ready;” Paige said returning to the phone call, “We’ll be there in ten minutes.”
“He’s going to freak out when he sees me, isn’t he,” Jordin asked causing Paige to laugh.
“He’s seen you a million times but yes, he will freak out for the first five minutes.”
Jordin laughed lightly as they drove to Paige’s brother’s house to pick up her nephew. Jordin pulled into the driveway and parked behind Josh’s Hummer. Following Paige into the house, Jordin shook her brother’s hand before hugging her sister-in-law. Josh and Jordin fell into conversation about Jordin’s comeback game and Josh informed him that he’d be taking Kayden and a client and their children to the game that night. Megan Walker offered to sit with her sister-in-law so that she wouldn’t be alone.
Kayden’s footsteps could be heard running down the stairs as Jordin and Paige stood up to leave as soon as he reached them. Jordin couldn’t believe that the shy four year old child that he had met in the locker room was now almost seven and was a firecracker compared to the shy child he once was.
“PAYPAY,” He shouted running into his aunt’s arms, “I miss you.”
“I miss you too little man,” she said kissing his cheek before picking him up. Kayden wrapped his legs around her waist and buried his face into her neck.
“JORDIN,” he yelled excitedly and reached out for Jordin to take him.
“Hey buddy,” Jordin said as Kayden wrapped his arms around his neck in a hug, “How are you?”
“I hear you were sick,” Kayden said, “Are you feeling better?”
Jordin smiled at the young boy, “I feel much better. Your aunt is taking good care of me.”
Kayden smiled as Paige grabbed his bag and his coat, “Put your coat on and give mommy and daddy a kiss.”
Jordin nudged Paige and watched with amusement as Kayden excitedly buttoned his coat and ran off to give his parents a kiss goodbye.
“I’ll call you if he needs anything but we should be fine,” Paige said as she hugged her brother and her sister-in-law, “Call me if you need to see if he’s okay.”
“We know he’ll be fine,” Megan said, “We’ll call anyway though.”
Jordin shook Josh’s hand and gave Megan one last hug as they headed towards the black Tahoe.
Kayden buckled himself in the backseat excitedly as Jordin and Paige shut the doors behind them, “Are we going to Aunt Paige’s house or yours?”
Jordin looked at Paige who was silently cursing herself for not preparing her nephew for the information she was about to tell him. Paige smiled and Jordin braced himself for the screaming.
“I live with Jordin now, so you’ll be staying with us this weekend.”
“ARE YOU SERIOUS,” he shouted and Jordin laughed.
“Yep, she lives with me now, so you’ll get to hang out with me all weekend.”
“THAT IS AWESOME,” Kayden shrieked, “Can we go skating?”
“You can go skating when you and Paige come to practice with me tomorrow, how’s that? You can skate with me and the guys; do you have your hockey equipment?”
“It’s in his bag,” Paige whispered, “I think he planned this.”
Jordin laughed once again as Kayden rambled on and on about how he was going to score on a breakaway against Pekka when he suddenly grew quiet. Paige turned around to see if he was okay, and he was sound asleep on Jordin’s backseat.
“He’s out like a light,” she said to Jordin as they pulled in front of their house.
“We’ll put him in your room and you can stay with me,” Jordin said, “If he wakes up, he can come sleep with us.”
“I can put him on the couch. That kid will sleep anywhere,” Paige said, “It’s no big deal.”
Jordin sighed, he had gotten used to Paige spending the night in his room and he liked waking up in the morning next to someone. It helped him sleep knowing he wasn’t alone, he didn’t feel so alone anymore and he had Paige to thank for that.
“Let him sleep in a bed,” Jordin said, “You’re sleeping with me.”
Paige sighed in defeat, “Fine, you get your way but you better share the blankets because I’m tired of waking up cold.”
“Deal,” Jordin said unbuckling Kayden’s seatbelt to carry him into the house.
Paige unlocked the door and turned the light on that led to their game room from the garage. Jordin carried Kayden upstairs and laid him in Paige’s bed gently. Jordin carefully removed his coat and his boots before tucking him into the blankets leaving the small light on next to the bed.
Paige shuffled through her drawers and pulled out at a pair of yoga pants and an old cut off sweatshirt before disappearing into her bathroom. She took a quick shower and went to Jordin’s room. She found Jordin sitting on the bed shirtless in a pair of sweatpants watching Dexter.
“Is it this week’s episode,” she asked climbing into the bed next to him.
“Yeah, it just started,” Jordin replied.
“Good, we both missed it.”
The episode finished and they both decided to watch Kick-Ass until they fell asleep. By the time the movie was over, they were both asleep. Kayden woke up a short while later and walked to Jordin’s room, “Jordin,” he whispered shaking him awake, “Jordin.”
“What,” Jordin asked half asleep, “You okay?”
“I have to go to the bathroom,” Kayden whispered and Jordin sat up taking the blankets off himself.
“You can use mine,” Jordin said standing up and taking Kayden’s hand in his, “I’ll wait out here.”
Jordin turned on the light and closed the door. Kayden flushed the toilet and opened the door, “I need help washing my hands, the sink is too high.”
Jordin smiled and followed him in, lifting him up, Jordin turned on the faucet as Kayden pumped the soap into his hands. Jordin sat him back down on the floor and handed him a wash cloth to dry his hands with.
“Thank you,” Kayden said smiling.
“You’re welcome, buddy,” Jordin whispered as they walked back into his room, “Do you want to stay here with me and Paige?”
Kayden nodded his head and climbed into bed behind Paige, “Goodnight, Jordin,” he whispered hugging him.
“Goodnight,” Jordin replied returning the hug as the small boy nestled into his side. Jordin missed this most about his little brother. Kayden was going to help in Jordin’s recovery too by being the child that Jordin set an example for.
Paige woke up the next morning and found the bed empty. After using the bathroom, she walked into her room and saw that Kayden was not in bed either. Hearing laughter coming from downstairs, Paige walked down and saw Jordin and Kayden eating bowls of cereal at the table.
“Good morning,” Paige said as she took a seat across from Kayden.
“Hi Paypay,” Kayden said as Jordin ruffled his hair.
“He slept with us last night, he woke up to go to the bathroom and I didn’t have the heart to let him walk all the way back down the hall.”
Paige laughed, “I was wondering why I had a small foot in my face at five in the morning,” she joked as she poured a glass of orange juice, “What time are we leaving for practice?”
“It starts at noon, we’re leaving at 11 so eat up,” Jordin smiled as he grabbed his and Kayden’s bowl and walked them to the kitchen.
Paige looked at the clock that read 9:30; she had an hour and a half to get herself and Kayden dressed and ready to go. When they were ready to go, Jordin let Paige drive his car and they headed to Bridgestone Arena.
Paige and Jordin walked down the halls and Jordin told her where to sit. Grabbing Kayden’s hand, she lead him to the area that was reserved for the press. Paige took a seat with Kayden on her lap as the guys skated out one by one.
Jordin was in a trance after looking up seeing Paige in the stands with Kayden on her lap. Jordin pictured her sitting in the same spot with a small child dressed in his jersey while all bundled up so he or she didn’t get sick. Wade snapped Jordin out of his thoughts as he swatted him in the leg with his stick, “What are you thinking about?”
“My comeback game,” Jordin lied.
“You’re thinking about Paige, aren’t you?”
Jordin sighed, he couldn’t lie to one of his best friends, “She’s really been there for me, man. I’m grateful to have her in my life.”
“Hold onto her, Jordin. You won’t always have me here,” Wade said, “I’m trade bait at anytime.”
Jordin didn’t want to think about losing Wade but there was always that nagging possibility. Right now, all Jordin wanted was Paige in his arms because living with her without being able to kiss her was driving him crazy. She may have been helping him with his addiction but his addiction was slowly becoming her.