The girls rally round, Gerard is distraught, Donna learns the truth
Beside him Alicia shook her head, "Guess you wouldn't believe it if we said we just stopped by to say hello?"
Monica shook her head, "Look I know everyone is trying to help but really I will deal with this." She stepped back to let them enter. She was shocked when Mikey threw his thin arms around her. "I told you once and I meant it Monica. I won't let anyone hurt you and that includes my fucking idiot of a brother. I know he loves you."
Christa was standing a short distance away watching things unfold. At times she still felt like an outsider. She made up her mind it was time to become one of the group. "Well, Ray I love you" she tuned to him took the cheesecake, set it on the coffee table then gave him a quick hug, "but take Mikey and get out."
Everyone in the room turned to look at her. "What?" Ray said.
Christa pushed him towards the door. "You gotta get out. We woman need to talk."
Mikey was shaking his head, "But I just got here."
Alicia understood where Christa was going with this. She was trying to make a horrible situation easier for Monica to deal with. "Is that chocolate covered cheesecake?" Alicia asked looking over at the box on the table.
"Yep, I made Ray stop at the bakery on the way over. Figured the situation called for something with some chocolate."
"Fuckin' A it does. Mikey, out you go." She gave him a peck on the cheek and pushed him backwards towards the door.
Ray shook his head, "Come on Mikey we are so outnumbered and the woman power vibe is strong."
"Get out while you can" Alicia said smugly.
Mikey gave Monica a final smile and followed Ray out. Once they were gone Christa took Monica's arm and led her to the sofa. "Monica, we're all here for you and Kara." She looked around the room "Where is she?"
Monica sighed, "She and Kelly left the school during mid-terms without permission. The kids were brutal to her, showing her the photos and laughing. When she took off, Kelly saw her and left too." She paused. "She took Kelly back to try to explain that she was upset and that Kelly had only gone because she was so worried about her."
"You should be proud, Monica. Even while she's trying to deal with this shit she still thinks about her sister first." Jamia said quietly.
Monica nodded, "I have to admit I was surprised but then she's done a lot of growing up the last couple of years." She looked at the women around her, "Why would Bob do this to her?" there was anger in her voice that was undeniable.
Christa was the voice of reason. "Look I know the photos look damning. Ray showed them to me at the apartment, but lets slow down. Maybe they aren't really as bad as they look. He explained to me who Eliza and Katlin are and that they have known them a long time."
"We all used to be really good friends" Alicia put in.
Monica frowned, "So explain the video. Gee is fucking kissing her, it didn't look like a sisterly kiss."
"Maybe she kissed him," Christa offered as explanation. "It's hard to tell with the mike between them"
Monica's eyes narrowed, "Well I didn't see him back away. He didn't look upset and when they broke apart he smiled and went right back to singing."
"He'd have to." Jamia said.
Monica just shrugged, "Look I know he's been staying out till the early hours of the morning with her. When I asked who he was with he said 'friends'. He deliberately didn't tell me who he was with." She looked down, 'I don't understand what's going on."
Alicia spoke softly, "Look I'm not gonna make excuses for him cause I think he's been acting like a shithead but I think I understand part of it. He and Mikey are so close and with Mikey gone I'm sure he's messed up. Not only does he have to deal with that but Ray's gone too. Gee has trouble with change sometimes. He doesn't deal well with it."
"Ray kinda said the same thing. He told me earlier that he bet this wouldn't have happened it he and Mikey were there." Christa put in.
Monica sat quietly listening to their words. What they were saying made sense but that still didn't give him the right to kiss another woman or to stay out all night with her. "I just don't know what to think or feel." Monica said sadly.
Christa laughed, "Oh, I can help with that one. If I were you I would be pissed as hell. He needs his ass kicked but Monica, the guy really loves you. I could see it in his eyes when you were in the hospital. You need to talk to him. Let him tell you what's going on." She looked at the other women and smiled, "and if he doesn't have a good enough excuse we will all kick his ass for you."
Jamia and Alicia burst out laughing, "Yeah, we will" Jamia said.
"Fuck, yeah" Alicia agreed.
Christa stood and picked up the cheesecake, "Who wants a piece?"
Monica looked around at her friends and tried to smile, "Make sure mine has extra chocolate on it."
In Moscow Gerard sat at the desk in his room drawing in his sketch book. The bold dark lines reflected the way he felt. He was dark and empty. He twisted in the chair looking for his cell phone that he had thrown down in disgust the last time he had tried to call her. Should he try again? Maybe if he called Kelly she could help him. He shook his head in anger. It was wrong to involve her. He just hoped that this mess wasn't affecting her.
Kelly walked into the kitchen and smiled at Donna who was at the stove. "How was your day?"
Immediately Kelly knew that Donna had not heard about what was going on. She tried to smile but it was forced, "It was okay." She started to walk to the stairs.
"Honey, what's wrong?" Donna set down the spoon she had been using to stir the soup and walked over to her. "Did you mess up one of your mid-terms?"
Kelly shook her head and looked down. "Tell me" Donna said softly.
"It's all over the Internet. There's picture of Bob and Gerard with these woman. There's even a video of Gerard kissing one of them."
She started crying, "Then at school Kara's friends were evil and showed her the pictures at lunch and they were laughing at her. She took off and I went with her."
Donna put her arms around her, "Kelly slow down and take a breath, "You and Kara went where?"
"To Jamia's to see Mom. She wasn't there at first she was out with Elle. Then she came back and Kara blurted it all out to her. Mom was trying to understand it all then Liv showed up to pick up Elle. So then Kara felt bad cause I was gonna be in a lot of trouble cause I had left school at midday so she drove me back and explained. I'm not in trouble but she is and they said she might not be able to graduate. She says it doesn't matter anymore cause she doesn't care. Now Kara is going back to Jamia's and she wouldn't let me go so she dropped me off."
Donna's face went blank as everything Kelly had just said began to sink in.
"I'm afraid Gerard doesn't love Mom anymore." She sobbed. "That means he doesn't love me either."
Donna tried to speak but couldn't seem to find the words. Gerard was with Eliza? Elle and Liv? What the hell was happening to her family?
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Sorry about the weird spacing in parts of the story. Working with a new computer and it's not playing well with others. Still happy to be back posting.