The girls arrive back in New Jersey. Monica and Alicia bond as sisters.
The flight had taken 5 1/2 hours. Leaving Vegas at 1:30 and reaching New York at 10:30 in the morning messed up your sense of time. After fighting the crowds to find their bags they had trudged to the shuttle that took them to the parking lot where Alicia had left her car. To make matters worse Jamia had gotten sick on the flight and was still feeling bad when they had dropped her off.
"I miss Mikey" Alicia said with a sigh. "I wish we could have stayed longer." She readjusted her sunglasses trying to hide the tears in her eyes.
"I know how you feel, I started to miss Gee as soon as we pulled away from the casino. I hope he is OK" Monica tried to think positively but she couldn't shake the strange feeling of dread that had settled in on her heart. Gee needed her and she couldn't be with him. He had said he understood and she believed he did. But that still didn't change the fact that he needed her and she wasn't there.
"Monica, try not to worry. They will we home soon, at least for a little while. I know you are worried about Gee and all the shit he's going through. Mikey will keep an eye on him."
"Alicia, Gee has never talked about it but I get from what others say that he has had a problem with depression in the past."
"Yea, he and Mikey both. The Way brothers have both battled depression but in a way it's good that they both have cause it make it easier for both of them to look out for each other."
Monica leaned her head back against the seat, "Alicia can I tell you something that you won't repeat even to Mikey?"
Alicia glanced over at her quickly, "Oh crap, this isn't gonna be good, is it?"
"If you don't want to keep things from Mikey then I won't tell you. I understand, really."
They had left the city behind and were headed to Belleville. "Monica, you need someone to talk to and I'm your girl. What you say to me will stay with me."
Monica raised her head, "Bert went to talk to Liv because I asked him to."
"Yea I know, I was standing by Ray when he told you not to tell Gee that you were the one who sent Bert. No body else heard. I was gonna ask you but didn't think it was my business."
"Alicia I think of you as a very close friend, hell we are gonna be sister- in-laws. Don't feel you can't ask me things." She returned Alicia's smile then continued, "There is more to it than that. Liv wants me to go and see her and Elena."
"Well fuck me. She told Bert that?"
"Yea, Bert said she pleaded with him to ask me to come and see her. She says she needs to talk to me."
Alica thought for a moment, "What the fuck do you think she wants? From everything I've heard about Liv it can't be good."
"Maybe she wants Gee back and thinks that if I see his daughter with her I will give him up." Monica spoke with sadness in her voice.
"Oh holy hell, please tell me you wouldn't even for one minute think like that. Liv messed Gee up so badly it would be his downfall if he got back with her. Even taking the girl into consideration, it would be so wrong."
Monica sat looking ahead thinking. Her mind was just so weary. She need to sort thought her feelings but couldn't focus. This thing concerning Jenn was worrying her too much on top of everything else.
Alicia worried about her silence, "Monica, trust me if Gee got back with her he would lose everything he is everything he has worked so hard for. She would tear him down. The fucking woman made him hate himself. Mikey has told me how bad it was for Gee when he was with her."
"Maybe she has changed." Monica said quietly.
"Not fucking likely. Think about the night at the Christmas Gala. She just waltzed in and thought he would run back to her. She made shitty comments about you. Does that sound like someone who has changed?"
"I don't know Alicia, I just can't think straight right now."
Alicia understood, "On top of all this shit you are worried about your girls."
"Kyle's sister hates me. I don't want her anywhere near my girls. Shit, I just want to forget every aspect of my life back in Kansas. I just want all that to be over."
Alicia saw the Welcome to Belleville sign. They were almost to Donna's. She spoke choosing her words carefully, "Monica you told me not to be afraid to ask you questions, well I don't' really want to ask you anything I want to tell you something. I know there is more to your husband's death than he just drown. I got a pretty good feeling he wasn't a very nice person and that whatever happened to him he deserved. I know that sounds shitty but that's how I feel. I'm not asking you what happened cause I really don't want to know. Why I'm saying this is cause I want you to know that I understand you've been through a lot of shit in your life and now with all this going on I want to be there for you. I want you to know that I'm with you I'll stand by you."
Monica was surprised and touched by her words. They had pulled up in front of Donna's. Alicia killed the motor. Before she knew what was happening Monica had her in a hug. Alicia hugged back. "Thank you so much. I was worried when I first met you that we would have trouble being friends. Our age difference worried me."
Alicia laughed," I don't even think about it. I guess you are older than me."
"Thirteen years, yea, I'm older" Monica shook her head, "But I gotta tell you, the truth, I don't really think of you as a close friend."
Alicia looked hurt until Monica added, "I think of you as a sister. I'm an only child so you have no idea how special you are to me."
They hugged again, Alicia laughed, "OK enough of the love fest. Let's get your crap inside before I fall asleep. I still gotta drive back to the apartment."
They grabbed the stuff and were met by Donna at the door. "Welcome home, daughters."
She smiled and held the door open. Both women gave her a hug.
Donna handed Monica a small jewelers box, "I am under strict orders by my son to hand this to you immediately.
Monica knew it was the engagement ring. Her hand shook slightly as she opened the box to reveal a beautiful white gold diamond ring. The center diamond was nestled between two smaller diamonds. It was beautiful. She took it and slid it on her finger. She remembered Gee's words and felt his love.
Her phone vibrated in her pocket. The id told her it was Gee. "I love you," she said as a greeting.
"I love you honey, now and forever." his voice was full of emotion.
"Gee how did you know just the right moment to call?" His call had been timed perfectly.
"Look at mom. She had my number on speed dial and hit it as soon as you had the ring box. I gotta go we just arrived and the whole day is planned out." Monica could hear the guys calling to him. "Just one more thing Monica, each day that passes gets us closer to our "Happily Ever After", just remember that, honey." With those final words the call ended.