Life on the Fast Track – 21

Chapter 21 – This is what the future looks like

Jasmine wanted to fight Danny.  She wanted to stay angry at Danny.  Angry at him for making her live through a sleepless night worrying the worst had happened.  Yet, seeing his face, his eyes filled with sincere worry, all she could think was, ‘thank goodness he wasn’t hurt.

Jasmine shifted her gaze to the silly apron he still wore.  It was pink, with frills on the side.  She liked sticking her hands in the pockets while she cooked.  Now, she would always remember how funny it looked on Danny.

“Are you going to say anything?” Danny asked, not moving away.

“I lived through a nightmare last night,” Jasmine said, still staring at the apron.  “Every time I close my eyes, all I see is you spinning out and you not making it.  I needed you to stay with me, Danny.  I needed to make sure you were fine, but you pushed me to Jimmy and drove off.”

“I needed to do that,” Danny insisted.  “It was the only way to catch that bastard.  Which we did, and the trouble is gone now.  I finished it.”

Jasmine shook her head.

“So, now what?  Should I be happy you almost got yourself hurt?  Oh, thank God he caught the culprit. What if something happened during the process?  I can’t live like that.  Don’t make me lose you.  I don’t want to—”

Danny pulled her into a tight hug.

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Two peas in a pod

 

“I’m not reckless.  I was safe, and as long as you were with Jimmy, I knew you were safe too.”

“You’re missing the point.”

“Don’t ask me to stop racing.”

Jasmine closed her eyes pressing her forehead into his shoulder.

“I’m not asking you to stop.  I’m asking you to think about the fact that you and I, we—

“We what?” Danny asked when she stopped.

Jasmine bit her lip, then let out a soft sigh.

“We’re like two peas in a pod, Danny.  Can you think about my heart too?  I don’t want to see you hurting.  I don’t want you to catch trouble.  I—I wouldn’t survive it if something happened to you.  So, promise me you’ll be extra careful.”

Danny tightened his arms around her, kneeling on the floor as he pulled her even closer.

“I promise, Jasmine.  Your heart is the most important thing to me.  You have to know that by now.”

Jasmine smiled, thinking she must have saved a village in the distant past.  Danny seemed to be hers when she had thought he would never be.  She wrapped her arms around him, as the fear that had bothered her all night dissipated.  It always did, when he felt so alive in her arms.  She hoped it would always be so.

They stayed holding each other until the door opened to admit Wanja.  Danny took his time letting go, even with Jasmine pushing him off her gaze on her mother.

“I figured I would have to come in here,” Wanja said, her chuckle startling Jasmine.  “Jazz, food is ready.  Come on.”

Wanja left them and Jasmine sat staring at the open door in surprise.  She had expected yells, and a few curses at Danny.  Danny took her right hand and pulled her up.  She followed him out of her bedroom to the little dining room off the kitchen.

Lunch was eaten in a cloud of excitement.  Jasmine listened as her brother and sister asked Danny too many questions.  He answered each one with patience, and interest.  He engaged her mother with stories of his childhood, his father’s restaurant, Terry’s business, his garage.  In a sense, it was the perfect family lunch.

Her strange apprehension about her mother disproving of Danny died away with each minute, each laugh, each giggle, and she wondered why she had worried so much.

Jasmine took her glass of orange juice from the table, sipping juice, her gaze resting on Daryl.  She thought about Daryl and their father.  The man who saw fault when his kids refused to follow the line and wondered how she was ever going to introduce Danny to him.  She frowned.

More importantly, what were they going to do about Daryl?

“Jazz?”

Jenny touched her left shoulder and she looked up to find everyone staring at her.

“Danny wants to take us to visit his garage,” Daryl said, his excitement tangible.  “Do you mind if we go?”

Jasmine looked at Danny and smiled when he winked at her.

“You can go,” she said, smiling at her brother.  “Don’t cause trouble though.”

Danny chuckled as both Daryl and Jenny got up heading outside to his car.

“I should help clean up,” Danny said, waving at the messy table.

“Don’t worry about it.” Jasmine pushed her chair back and stood.  “You helped cook.  I’ll clean up.”

Jasmine took plates to the kitchen, and wasn’t surprised when Danny followed her.

“I’ll see you later?” Danny asked, stealing a quick kiss, making sure Wanja didn’t see him.

“Yeah, sure.  I’ll be home.”

Jasmine swatted his hand away when he pinched her waist.  She watched him hurry back to the dining table.

“Mamma Jazz, I’ll bring Daryl and Jenny home.  Thank you so much for lunch.”

“It was nice to meet you, Danny,” Wanja said.  “I hope this is not the last time we’ll see each other.”

“Definitely not,” Danny said, moving to hug her.  “I’ll come visit you with Jasmine next time.”

Wanja chuckled and Jasmine came back to the table to see Wanja watch Danny leave.

“He’s bold, that one.”  Wanja noted when Danny was gone.  “So, you two are serious?”

Jasmine wiped the table mats, arranging them neatly.

“Do you approve?”

“He’s a good man.  I know his father, and Terry is like your sister.  She slept over our house so much, she’s like a daughter to me.”

Wanja patted the empty seat next to her.

“Jazz, sit.”

Jasmine placed the cloth she held on the table and moved to sit next to her mother.

Wanja took her hand, and rubbed her fingers gently.

“I’m no expert on love.” Wanja gave her a rueful smile.  “So, I won’t tell you Danny is right, or he is wrong for you.  All I can say is make the right choice for you. Your heart knows what it wants.  That’s what matters most in this very long life.”

“Mum.”

Wanja brought her hand up to stroke Jasmine’s right cheek.

“You were always the strongest of my kids.  I don’t think you get it from me, Jazz.  I think you get it from your father.”

“He won’t approve of Danny.”

Jasmine shook her head, sure she was right.

“He is set in his ways,” Wanja said with a sigh.  “But you prove him wrong on a constant basis.  So, he’ll accept Danny, in time.”

Jasmine squeezed her mother’s hand and stood up.

“Speaking of which, before he approves or disproves of my boyfriend, why don’t we talk about Daryl.”

“Jazz.”

“Military?  Mum, seriously?  Daryl doesn’t want that.” Jasmine shook her head.  “You’ve always known he loves engineering.  Why won’t you fight for him?”

“It’s not that easy.”

Jasmine picked up the mats she had arranged.

“Fine, I’ll help you make it easy.  Daddy is home, right?  Let’s go see him.”

“Jazz—

“We have to try, Mum.  Otherwise, Daryl won’t forgive us when he ends up marching for the country.  And I’m not saying there is anything wrong with joining the military.  I just think a guy should do what he wants.  If Daryl wants to work in engineering, he should.  Who knows what he’ll end up building?”

Wanja wiped a hand down her face, and shook her head.

“You’re probably the only person who can stand up to Daddy with that statement.”

Jasmine grinned and hurried into the kitchen to dump the mats in their drawer.

“Then let’s do it today.  I’ll go get my sweater.  We should go before Danny finishes with Jenny and Daryl.  I don’t want them anywhere near the explosion when it happens.”

***

Thank you for reading…to be continued ^_^

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Life on the Fast Track – 12

12 – I know My Best Friend’s got my Back

Jasmine’s phone buzzed and she smiled when she checked her messenger.  Danny was

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Photo by William Stitt on Unsplash

checking in on her.  They had not seen each other for a week since he dropped her food at work.  But, he called and replied messages when she wrote them.  A little thrill went through her every time her phone buzzed now.  She liked it.

“So, this morning on my way to drop off an order, there was this discussion on the radio,” Terry said, as they strolled through the mall.  “Apparently, most women fantasize about celebrity women.  Who you’d do, the ideal one.”

Jasmine laughed.

“I’ve never wanted to be with a woman but if asked, I think I’d go with Angelina Jolie,” Terry declared.

“Coz, she has experience?” Jasmine asked with a chuckle.

“Her badass attitude would totally rub off on me, and come in handy when I pick fights,” Terry said.  “She would be cool in a fight.”

“Gal, what are you saying?” Jasmine asked stopping at the Body Splitz shop.  “You don’t think I’d have your back in a fight?”

“Of course you do, but you’re all girly looking,” Terry said, giving her a once over, then she laughed when Jasmine smacked her arm.

“I can scratch out eyes with the best of them,” Jasmine declared, strolling down the closest aisle.  “What’s with the fantasies?  Whose eyes do I need to scratch out?”

“Your man,” Terry said, a grim look on her face.  “Danny is interfering with my business.  Granted that he has every right, he footed the capital, still…it’s annoying.”

“Who is he trying to save you from?” Jasmine asked, stopping in the body wash section.  “Does it have anything to do with the races?”

“Yeah,” Terry said, taking a bottle of lavender body wash and smelling it.  She returned it to the shelf.  “Jazz, you’re going to have to deal with that part of his life, eventually.”

“I know,” Jasmine said, handing Terry her shopping basket.  She picked out a bottle of mint lotion, and smelled it.  “His racing scares me, gambling with this life every time he gets behind the wheel.  I can’t think about it.”

“Danny is not an idiot,” Terry defended her brother.  “He is not careless and knows what he’s doing, Jazz.  He doesn’t take unnecessary risks and insists on a clean race.  Which is part of the reason my business is an issue now.  Danny’s trying to weed out some thug from their circle.”

“Is that why he’s kept away for a week?” Jasmine asked, trying to keep her tone nonchalant.  The messaging and phone calls were great, but Danny had not come to see her once.

“Do I sense some frustration?” Terry teased.

Jasmine chose the mint lotion, mint shampoo and body wash, placing them in her shopping basket.  She picked out a coconut lotion for Terry and looked at her best friend.

“Maybe,” Jasmine said.  “In truth, Danny and me, we’re worlds apart.  I’m caught in between wanting to get close and keeping this strange distance we have.”

“Jasmine Lima, don’t try to tell me that you are not missing my brother,” Terry said, heading to checkout.  They paid for their respective products and Terry pointed a finger at her as they took their shopping bags.  “I know you.”

“Well,” Jasmine sighed.  “I’m confused about him, Terry, and that’s the truth.”

“First, not to sound biased, but Danny is a good guy,” Terry said, when they left the store.  “Second, I don’t remember the last serious relationship you had.  Who was it with?”

“Tyler,” Jasmine answered, hating to remember it.  She had loved Tyler.  Yes, if she was to really be truthful, she had cared about Tyler enough to want to keep him.  “That turned into a mess.”

“Oh that’s right,” Terry said, her eyes darkening.  “Shit, Tyler wasn’t straight, Jazz.  He messed you up.”

“I cared too much.  He—,” Jasmine broke off.  “I’m not sure what he wanted.  All I know is that he did what his brother said and it didn’t involve keeping me.”

“His brother?” Terry frowned.  “I never heard about Tyler’s brother.”

“Yeah, I didn’t want to admit that my boyfriend left me ‘coz his brother didn’t think I was good enough,” Jasmine said with a soft scoff.  “It’s humiliating.”

“What is this brother’s name?  I’ll see about him,” Terry scowled.  “Tell me, Jazz.”

“It’s over and done.”

“I don’t care.  What if I date him?  Come on, I need to know his name.”

“Fine,” Jasmine said, amused.  “But dating my ex would be breaking the bff’s code.”

“Not your ex, his brother,” Terry clarified, making a face.  “Will you just tell me the bastard’s name?”

“Adrian Anderson,” Jasmine said.  “A pain in the ass is what he is, thinks he is some sort of ruler of the kingdom.”

“Anderson!” Terry gaped.  “Are you sure?”

“Yes,” Jasmine said, walking out of the mall into the cool evening.  “He came over to my house once to get Tyler.  It wasn’t pretty.”

“Oh no,” Terry shook her head and got quiet.

Jasmine stopped to look at her.

“What?  Is everything alright?” Jasmine asked.

Terry looked at her and smiled, though she seemed preoccupied to Jasmine.

“Yes, everything is fine,” Terry said.  “Come on, let’s go have something to eat.  I’ll treat you.”

“I feel like eating barbequed chicken,” Jasmine said, wrapping an arm around Terry.  “Real juicy and spicy.”

“So specific,” Terry laughed.  “I’ll take you to the Passion Fruit.”

****

“Stop!” Jimmy laughed.  “No more kungfu jokes, Danny.”

“Why?  You used to love those old movies.  What happened to that whole collection?”

“I don’t remember.  Lost in the junk in the storage room,” Jimmy said, sipping on his beer.  “Where’s Terry?”

“She went out earlier,” Danny said, changing the channel on the big screen to a football game.  “Probably getting back about—

Terry slammed into the house and dropped the shopping bags she held on the floor.  She stared at Danny, who was reclined on the couch, her expression made him wonder what had her in a tiff now.

“What?” Danny asked, sipping his beer, giving her a wary glance.

“Go to Jasmine,” Terry ordered.

“What’s happened?” Danny asked, sitting up.  “Is she hurt?  Why—

“No,” Terry said.  “But, I think you should be with her.”

“I messaged her a few minutes ago.  She said she’s fine, staying in this evening,” Danny said, relaxing.

Terry gave an impatient sigh and moved to sit next to Jimmy.

“Do you care for her, Danny?”

“You know how I feel about her.”  Danny frowned.  “Terry, I’m trying to find a way to pull Anderson out of our lives.  It’s better to go back to Jazz when it’s over.  Who knows what he’ll do?”

“Forget it.  She used to date Anderson’s little brother, Tyler,” Terry said.  “She told me they broke up because Anderson ordered it.  He knows her.  He knows where she lives.  It would be better—

Danny got up, threw the remote on the couch, meeting Jimmy’s gaze.  He was out of the house before Terry finished.

“…if you went to Jasmine.”

***

To be continued….Thank you for reading ^_^

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A/N : – If reading for the first time, this is an ongoing serial story.  I will link them all in one tab for easier reading at Track 15.  Enjoy!

I Dream of You – Free Story

I dream of youe

I Dream of You

by Elly Kamari

Summary:

Janet Kerira has been dating Timothy for a year and a half and he’s never told he loves her. On Valentine’s Day, she spends the day worrying because Timothy hasn’t called her for four days. He left on an assignment four days ago and hasn’t called, messaged or even emailed her once. Even with her concerns that their relationship is fading away, she can’t help but worry about Timothy’s safety, and hopes that the magic of Valentine’s Day will bring him back to her.

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In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, here is a short story.  Have a read, let me know what you think of it.

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