Also, the character Hazel was created by AgentKilljoy (hope I got that right), who is pretty awesometastic and I heart her.
Long chapter is long.
Chapter 58: The date night
The situation was nerve wrecking.
After all, she’d never been on a date before, and the first date was kind of a big deal. At least that’s what she thought it was. She wasn’t really sure. Most girls have their moms to talk about this kind of stuff to. All Gia had was her dad, and even if she mentioned the word ‘date’, he’d just stick fingers into his ears and start singing.
And speaking of Gerard… He didn’t take the whole date thing very well. It was bloody. There was yelling. Some things were said, Gia cried a bit. Doors slammed, by both participants.
Gia knew that she had gotten back at him, made him upset, but it just wasn’t quite enough.
So, eventually Lindsey had talked to him and somehow made him see that maybe this wasn’t the worst possible thing that could happen.
“So you’re sure you wanna go?” Gerard asked, his head peeking from behind the door. “I could come along, you know… Or, I could send Frank, you like hanging out with him right?”
Gia couldn’t help but smile. Yes, he may have agreed to let her do this, but he still wasn’t okay with it. During the half an hour that Gia had been up in her room, getting ready for the date, he had kept interrupting her and asking if she was sure about this.
“Yes I’m sure. And no, I’m pretty sure we don’t need a chaperone.”
“Who said anything about chaperone? No, I’m not saying these things as your father, I’m saying this as a friend. You know? I feel like we’re at a place where we can call each other friends and just have a serious conversation about... feelings and shit.”
“Dad,” Gia said, raising a brow. “You’re acting crazy again.”
Gerard frowned. “Okay, I change my mind! You’re not going anywhere!”
And before she could react, he had pulled the door shut and barricaded it with the couch that was on the outside of Gia’s room. The girl sighed, and waited for a couple of moments. Then she heard the couch being moved slowly, and the door reopened to reveal a very unhappy looking man.
“I’m sorry,” he said.
“That’s okay. I understand. You’ve had coffee.”
The doorbell rang downstairs, and immediately Gia felt strange. There were butterflies in her stomach and her heart jumped into her throat and started beating rapidly. All color flushed down from her face when the nervousness grew a few hundred levels.
“You stay here until I tell you it’s okay to come down,” Gerard said in a very stern tone and glared at her threateningly.
Gia wondered if she should have come up with a better way to get back at him than this. Obviously he was heading down the crazy road again.
Downstairs, moments before the doorbell rang, Lindsey was in the kitchen with four men. One of them looked bored, one looked like he was either high on skittle-sugar or very badly constipated, one had the afro distracting from the anxious look on his face and the fourth man had just finished up his thirteenth cup of coffee that evening.
“I am getting too old to drink this much,” Mikey sighed as he looked at his empty cup. “Linds, fill me up.”
“Mikey, I love you and everything, but no. I will not give you any more coffee. One, because your hands are shaking from the amount of caffeine. And two, there is no more coffee in the house.”
The doorbell rang, and Frank shot up from his seat. “I’ll get it!” he immediately announced, but Lindsey told him to shut up and sit down, and went to the door herself.
The boy behind the door wasn’t exactly what she had been excepting. This was a huge change from Lucas, that’s for sure. Ryan was tall for his age, and the black Mohawk made him look even taller. He had a piercing on his lip and his clothes just screamed the exact opposite of ‘I’ll return your daughter safely by 9 o’clock’.
Lindsey wasn’t one to make a snap judgment, and neither was Gerard, but when it came to the boy Gia would be spending the next few hours alone with, Lindsey had a feeling that Gerard wouldn’t be as understanding.
The woman had a strong urge to slam the door to his face just so the peace in the house would stay and her husband’s sanity wouldn’t have to go through this. But, Lindsey wasn’t Gerard. So she let the poor boy in.
“Oh my god!” Ray gasped. The four men had decided to come greet the boy. “Gerard is going to flip out!”
“Hey nice hair!” Frank said gleefully, and then realized that he wasn’t supposed to like anything about the boy, and did his best attempt of a mean glare. That backfired obviously and he ended up looking like a retarded raccoon.
“Shut up guys,” Lindsey commanded, and then smiled to Ryan. “Hi, I’m Lindsey. Gia’s… I guess stepmom.”
“Hi. So is Gia about ready?”
“She’ll be down in a minute.” At least that’s what Lindsey hoped.
But when Gerard came down the stairs alone, she knew that things wouldn’t go as easy as she had hoped.
“Oh hell no!” Gerard shouted once he saw Ryan.
“Yeah!” Frank shouted as well. “What he said.”
No one in their right mind would’ve been afraid of Frank, but when he was surrounded by four other grown up men, even the midget became threatening. Ryan began to question if this was a good idea after all when he realized that he didn’t only have to deal with the father, but four other maniacs as well.
Upstairs, Gia stared at herself on the mirror quietly. Judging by the silence, no one was being killed, which she took as a good sign.
She had spent a lot of thought on her outfit. She had decided that a skirt wouldn't be a good idea, so she wore black jeans, a white shirt and a dark purple, nearly black jacket. She had no idea where Ryan had planned on taking her, but she had a feeling that it wouldn't be anything too formal. For a moment she wondered if she should change her shirt. The belly button ring was bulging a bit through the tight shirt, but she figured that as long as she keeps her jacket shut around her dad, he won’t notice a thing.
The silence was broken by her cell phone ringing, and Gia hesitated a moment before answering. What are the chances that Lucas would call now, at a time like this?
“Hi! I’m not calling at a bad time am I? I’m grounded and mom doesn’t know I have two cell phones so this is pretty much all I can do right now.”
“Why are you grounded?” Gia didn’t even bother getting worried. She knew that Lucas liked to get in trouble.
“I might’ve ate the cake that mom bought for her boss’ birthday office party. So, what’s up?”
“Lucas… I need to ask you something. And it’s pretty important.”
In a way, she was glad he had called, because she felt guilty about going out with someone else when things with Lucas were… Well, she had no idea that they were like, and that’s what she wanted to find out. “I was just thinking about what you said the other night on the backyard… And I was just wondering what exactly it means.”
“Honestly, how daft can you be?” Lucas laughed. “It means exactly what I said. I like you, but I don’t expect you to say the same. And the truth is, there is this distance now, so even though I said that I think it’d be best if we just continue being friends. Okay?”
Gia thanked heavens that Lucas wasn’t shy at all. She couldn’t have said any of that if she had to. Gia took a deep breath before answering. “Okay, promise you won’t freak out or get mad at me or something.”
“Remember that scary guy I told you about? The one I was doing that health ed assignment with?”
“The guy you have a baby with?”
“Yes. Well, he asked me out and… We’re going out tonight.”
Lucas didn’t answer. The only reason she knew he was still there was because his breathing had become heavy and she could hear it.
“Lucas… This was bound to happen sooner or later. You live there now, and besides, you just said –“
Before she could finish, he hung up. Gia felt like crying. She wasn’t exactly sure what was between the two of them. Ever since Lucas left, and they had kissed, she had been confused whether they were friends or… something else.
But the truth was that he lived on the other side of the country, and there was no way to get around that. They’d move on sooner or later. Perhaps Gia made it happen too soon, and for completely wrong reasons, but it was still inevitable.
Downstairs, Ryan was forced to sit on the couch. Lindsey watched silently as the five men stood in front of him, glaring. Or actually, four of them were glaring. Bob didn’t really understand what the big deal was. If the girl liked this boy, then why should he have a problem with it? Frank had tried to explain it to him on the way there and even drew a couple of pictures, but as usual, Frank’s explanation just made everything more complicated.
“So which one of you is the dad?” Ryan asked. He was getting kind of freaked out from the silence and staring.
“Oh wouldn’t you like to know!” Frank scoffed.
Gerard glanced at the short man like he had just ruined the whole thing, and then said to Ryan: “I am. Now, what exactly are your intentions with my daughter?”
On the side of the whole scene, Lindsey rolled her eyes. She felt like she was in the middle of a silly fan fiction.
“I am intending on going out with her?” Ryan answered.
“Yeah, you wish!”
“Frank, shut up.”
Mikey decided to speak up, even though he had probably overdosed from the coffee. “He means, what will you two be doing tonight.”
“Oh! Well, I was thinking of going to the movies and then probably just eat something. But is Gia going to be down soon?”
Ryan glanced at Lindsey, who seemed to be the only nice, normal one around.
“She should be here in a minute. Oh, there she is,” Lindsey said and smiled when she saw the girl come down the stairs, glad that the third degree could end.
Ryan got up from the couch, thankful that Gia had finally decided to come down. “Hey,” he said to her. “You ready to go?”
“Yeah, in a second,” Gia smiled, and then looked at her four uncles. “What are you guys doing here?”
“Being supportive,” Mikey answered.
“I don’t need any support.”
Ray grinned and said: “He meant to Gerard."
"He’s a wreck,” Bob confirmed.
“Yes, I see that…” Gia sighed, glancing at her dad. Lindsey and he were talking quietly, and it was obvious that she was trying to stop him from doing something stupid. “Okay, let’s go then.”
“I hope you don't mind getting your hair flat,” Ryan said when they got to the door, and Gia soon realized why.
“Um… You seriously want me to get on that thing?”
Gia had never been on a motorcycle, and she had never considered trying. Those death machines were terrifying, and she never would’ve agreed to go out with Ryan if she knew it would require riding a motorcycle.
She almost told him that the date was off, but when she saw the horrified look on her father’s face, she changed her mind, and followed Ryan to her doom.
“Here, put this on,” Ryan said, giving her a black helmet.
Gia considered asking if she could get a full-body armor, but then just gave up, put the helmet on (and made sure it stayed on), and climbed on the motorcycle behind him. She was so happy she wasn’t wearing a skirt like she had originally planned. The black jeans were a much better choice considering the situation.
When Ryan started the engine and the motorcycle roared, Gia yelped in surprise and wrapped her arms tight around his middle body. She heard him tell her to hold on tight, and then they were off.
Being deathly terrified of motorcycles, during the whole ride she just held on to him in fear of suddenly flying off, and prayed that time would undo itself so she could get out of this situation. But through some sort of a miracle, she did not die. When the motorcycle stopped, and her feet touched the solid ground, she swore that she would never get on that thing again.
"See? Wasn't that fun?" Ryan asked once he'd taken his helmet off.
"You ride that thing for fun?! You enjoy the possibility of dying?"
Ryan shrugged. "You have to admit that it's pretty cool."
Gia stared at him like he was crazy. This boy was even harder to understand than Lucas ever was, and she wasn't so sure if that was a good thing. Now she was starting to doubt if Ryan could keep his promise to her dad to return her home safely.
But surprisingly, four and a half hours later, Gia was still alive and in one piece, and standing on the driveway of her home. From what Gia had learned from the movies, the date had been pretty standard. Ryan took her to see a movie, then they went to eat in that Chinese place that she liked. And even though her thoughts were constantly elsewhere, she still had fun. Sort of.
"So... Here's your helmet back," she said, handing him the object. "I had fun. Thank you."
"Me too. Thank you for agreeing to go out with me. Now when I tell people about my plastic baby, at least I can say that I dated the mother."
Gia smiled and said: "Too bad we have to give Edmund back next week."
"Didn't we agree on Eddie, and not Edmund?"
"So, I'll see you at school."
"Yeah I guess." Gia wasn't sure how she should act and what she should say in a situation like this, as it was kind of new, so she just ended up on saying 'bye' and walking to the door. But before she could even take a step, Ryan grabbed her hand, stopping her.
"One more thing," he said, and pulled her closer.
Before Gia could react, his other arm went to the back of her head, and his lips pushed against hers. Even though it took her completely off guard, and his grip on her was a bit forceful, it didn't even occur to her to pull away.
The kiss wasn't very long, but when it ended, Gia felt like it had lasted much longer. And without saying a word, she walked to the door.
"See you at school!" Ryan shouted to her before he put on his helmet and drove off on his death machine.
Gia went into the house, still feeling the tingly feeling of the kiss on her lips. But the problem was, that she wasn't quite sure whether she had enjoyed it or not. However, the one thing she knew for sure is that she knew she would have to put up a show on and pretend she likes him, just so her dad would go crazy.
As soon as Gia got in the house, she was greeted by the very angry and frustrated looking Gerard in the hall.
"Before I get mad, I just need to ask one thing. Why did you kiss him? Did you know you can die from that?"
Gia did understand that the whole point of this date thing was to get back at her dad, but still... She was kind of afraid of his reaction and the yelling. "Die? From a kiss?"
"Yes, I am perfectly capable of murder."
"Me too!" Frank piped up from behind Gerard, and the other three were quick to agree.
Gia just now noticed her uncles at the end of the hall, all with similar looks like Gerard. "Well..." she started nervously, preparing to lie her ass off.”I wanted to, that’s why."
Gerard was now turning cherry red and nothing good can happen when his face is that particular shade of crimson. Gia nearly flinched and backed out, but then realized that if she did that, it would mean giving up. And she wasn't going to do that. This victory belonged to her.
"You're so grounded! Why are you doing this? To make me mad? Are you doing this to get back at me for doing everything I wanted?"
For a moment Gia didn't know what to say. Then she started to get a bit angry too. "You wanted all those things. But did you care enough to make sure I was okay with everything? No!"
"You said you were fine with everything!"
"Everything happened so fast! How can you except me to think about anything when you're rushing into things left and right?!"
Gerard was about to reply, but then his attention was caught by something else. "What the hell is that?"
Gia looked down at where he was pointing, and noticed that now that she'd taken her jacket off, the small bump on her stomach from the piercing was fully visible. She sighed. She had not expected this to come up.
"Gia Mikaela Way, please tell me that it's not what I think it is," Gerard said with a dangerously low voice. It was horrible, even worse than the yelling. It was like the calm before the storm.
She pulled up her shirt enough for him to see the piercing. From the moment she had gotten the belly button piercing, Gia had known that it was something that would make him freak out. It was better to show him now, as she didn't know how much longer she would be able to hide it.
When Gerard saw the piercing, he ready to kill, but also he felt sick. He hated needles and the only thing he could think of was how a needle had to go through her skin. He stayed silent until Gia covered her stomach again, and then he just blew up.
"What the hell happened to you?! You used to be so... so... good! Now you run away from home, get a piercing, go off kissing guys. What's next? You're going to get pregnant?! Is that what you want?"
"I'm not like my mom and you. I'm not careless and reckless like you were. I'm not stupid."
"All of this kind of tells me otherwise! Why? Why now? What did I do wrong?"
Gia couldn't believe what she was hearing. Was he actually asking her what he did wrong?
"Oh, I don't know. Could it be that you did drugs and were drunk for the most part of my childhood? I had to raise myself because there was no one else to do it for me! I didn't know right from wrong back then but I taught myself. If you didn't do drugs I wouldn't be the way I am! You're the reason I am this way. You're the reason I do what I do. You were never there and you still aren't."
She started to get tears into her eyes, but she didn't let them fall. She couldn't cry, even though she wanted to. "You go to rehab and promise me that everything will be better, that we'll spend more time together and that you'll be a better dad. Well, what happens? As soon as everything starts to fall into place, you go off and knock up some woman who I barely even know! And now you're married to her, and you just expect me to be okay with all of these changes? You don't even include me in any of them! I'm on the outside looking in and I don't like that!"
Gia didn't know where this all came from, but she guessed that from holding everything in for so long. It was ready to come out. Gerard seemed just as surprised as she was. He had never had Gia argue back and although he didn't like that she was, he had known she would eventually. Neither of them noticed the other four men, but if they had, they would've seen that they were just as shocked.
Gerard thought things over for a moment, and then, even though he knew that it was crazy to even think that, he asked: "Is this about Lucas?"
"Oh my god," she sighed. "Look, you can blame him all you want. But the truth is that Lucas didn't do anything but help me get over the fact that my dad was never there. He helped me when you wouldn't. While you were dating and having fun with Lyn-z and the band, I was here with Lucas or in California, and..."
"Wait, what? He was in California with you?" Gerard asked. Gia got silent, afraid to continue. "Is that the real reason you wanted to be there? You didn't want to know anything about your grandparents. You wanted to be alone with that... That..." He groaned, and then shouted: "I am going to kill Lucas next time I see him!"
Gia knew she said something that shouldn't have come out but she was happy she got the big summer secret off her chest.
"Did you really want to get to know your grandparents or did you just want to go with Lucas?"
"Actually, both. I wanted to get to know them so I could try to remember something about my mom, learn things about her. You never tell me about her, so what was I supposed to do? Lucas was just there to be the good friend he is. He is the only friend I had. You're mad at me, but really I should be mad at you! You go out and get with someone and wait until things get serious with her before introducing her to me?! What if she was horrible to me? What if she threatened me? You would be so in love with her and not believe me. Then out of the blue you get engaged. I had to try to accept that and then, when I am barely getting use to the fact that she is here to stay, you tell me you two are getting married! I am still trying to get used to it. And right when about to accept that, you go and tell me she’s pregnant! How did you think I was going to take everything!? How would you feel if you had to go through what I did?" Gia stopped for a moment to take a breath, and Gerard was about to say something, but she was nowhere near done.
"I lose my Mom to suicide, and then get raised by a drug addict and the whole time I am fighting with family to stay with you because no matter what, you're still my dad! Then you go and betray me by getting engaged, getting married and having a kid and I get to learn EVERYTHING within a year. Did you ever think, 'Hey, I have a daughter, I shouldn't do drugs and mess up her life' or 'I should make sure my daughter is okay before dating and ask her what she would think if I got engaged and had another baby'?"
"That is all in the past. I am thinking about the future. And I don’t want to see you acting like this again. I don't want to see you treat me like this again. Do you hear me!?"
"At the moment I don't really care."
"You've been lying your ass off to me. God knows what else you lied about. I did not raise you to be a liar!"
"You didn't raise me at all!"
"You know what? I think you did have sex with Lucas. I knew you lied about that! Ever since he left you changed. You're more open with things, you don't think anymore. You ever think about what I would think about what you do? You're my only daughter, and I'm allowed to worry about you all the time."
"I know that! But then I remember how you never thought about me, so I figure, I can have a little fun and do what I want like you did."
"You had your fun and I will kill Lucas if I ever see him again. And the new guy, what'shisface."
"You're being SO unfair and you know it!"
"You have no idea how disappointed I am, Gia."
Gia was starting to get over whelmed. How could Gerard actually think that she would do something so stupid and reckless, like he did when he was her age? She didn't want to turn out like her parents and be a teen mom. She didn't want to have a baby without being in love.
Tears were blurring her vision, but she saw that her uncles were all looking from her to Gerard and back. They all looked very concerned. Lindsey was now by Gerard's side, talking to him quietly to make him stop arguing. She knew very well that Gerard can get nasty when it comes to him and his anger problems.
Not able to stand there any longer, Gia ran to her room, tear pouring down her cheeks. However, she didn't care about the tears. She wanted to stop thinking altogether, so she wouldn't have to think about all the things that were just said.
As soon as she got to get room, Gia slammed the door shut and crawled onto her bed. Jersey made a whining noise and came to check if his owner was okay, but Gia just ignored him.
All she could do was cry.
She heard the front door close downstairs, so the guys probably left. Gia tried to hear what Gerard and Lindsey were doing downstairs, but she heard nothing.
In the silence, Gia started to replay the fight in her head. She didn't want to think about it, because it just made her want to chop someone's head off and throw it in front of a moving bus.
And once that thought occurred to her, she decided that she had to get out of that house. As long as she is in that house, she would think about the fight.
Thanks to Lucas, she knew how to sneak out of her room through the window without making a sound, and get to the ground level without breaking any bones. Thank god Gerard hadn't figured out that the tree growing next to her window was an excellent way to get out.
Her first instinct was to of course call Lucas, but he was still on the other side of the country. So, she called the next best thing. Gia still wasn't quite sure whether she trusted Hazel or not, but at this situation, she couldn't bother being too careful.