Ayden’s Eyes 47
Jay had a smile on his face and thanked Tush and Bubble several times as Spud was again tearing up.
“You should have told me, I’m your best friend and you shut me out.”
“I am sorry Spud, you’re right but I thought I had a handle on it, he fed me loads of bullshit and I fell for it. You know I would have told you but I didn’t want to upset you, that’s all.”
Tony and Horse were looking at him and Tony looked like he was going to go for someone’s throat. Abs held Cyn who was really upset as Rita cut pieces of cake for everyone, that fixes everything.
Hulk stood there not knowing what to say then he did a good thing, he stepped up beside the bed and kissed Jay on the forehead and said,
“Get well soon our friend.” The most I have ever heard him say, and it was in English.
Jay did a double take and tried to laugh.
“You have just given me a boner Hulk, a frigging boner and I am so in pain too, what the hell?” Ali translated, Hulk smiled and it was beautiful.
Everybody laughed and before I left I whispered in his ear, I thought I might give him some hope.
“He’s twenty-one, he has a story, and he is so upset about what happened to you. Maybe you should look closer to home in future.”
He gave me a blank stare but then he got it and smiled back.
“He likes me?” he sputtered out.
“But Den, he’s gorgeous, why would he be interested in me?”
“Ask him, not me, but I think your gorgeous too.” I smiled.
Ayden was sitting beside him.
“Jay ok now, Kin fix Jay, Bubs too.” He kissed Jay then we left feeling much better because our baby Bubs has got it all under control.
We called into see Susan and Pat, the girls had finally returned and they had a great time teasing Spud and Ali. We listened to their stories and they ended up saying they are already thinking about coming back to Australia. They said the van behaved perfectly and after many, many thank yous they eventually got our coffee ready. Susan and Pat had put them to work.
Hulk drove our car and us back and Evan drove the van, he parked it in the garage, I had a funny thought, something for Spud to try, but I will tell him later on.
Everything seemed back to normal when we hit our porch, my boys donned their wet suits and Pat had followed us home, he was waiting for them in the car park. Evan looked at me and I nodded.
“That’s what we are here for Bub, go and surf and while you do, think about that big dick of mine doing you in the bushes tonight.” He groaned but I was too quick, I shoved him out the back door even though he protested.
Horse cradled Ayden as Tony still seethed.
“When Jay comes home I am going to send him to Indonesia for six weeks, he can oversee my workroom and if everything’s okay he can ship it straight from there to the customers.”
“He will be okay Tony, there’s no need to move him to another country. He made a mistake, he’s new to the game and let his guard down a little, that’s all.”
“Well I’ll think about it, he’s a bloody good worker so I don’t want to lose him.”
Yes, I hear you Tony, and he has become your friend and you worry about him too.
The smells from Rita’s kitchen were awesome and as the afternoon wore on I got hungrier and hungrier. Rita saved me by bringing a bowl down, some sort of Mongolian stew which tasted wonderful.
“This sure is good honey, did the boys make it?”
“No Den, this one is mine, I wanted to see if I could broaden my recipe book so I gave it a try.” She smiled.
“They are not here to take over you know.”
“I know, they are here for security and the fact they can cook is a bonus. I just wanted to try something different.”
“You’re worried aren’t you?”
“A little, I don’t want my hamburgers to take second place on the menu, I made heaps out of them last Christmas.”
“It’s not going to happen baby; they are the best ones within a hundred miles so don’t sell yourself short.”
“Well I put a lot into them Den, they should be good.”
“Let’s just see what the food critic says, I noticed they had hamburgers on their second visit and they ate them all to the last crumb.”
“Really,” I replied.
She sashayed down to the kitchen and I checked Ayden was asleep, now for my talk with his king.
I had limits I wanted to discuss with him. No more hurting the baby, and if he has to, just put him to sleep, but no dreams. I thanked David for doing Ali’s beautiful painting and I also thanked him for Jay’s life, but could they all make it less painful for me in the future.
“And thank you for Evan, I know you were behind it now; and I will treasure him every day of my life.”
“Does that mean we can all relax?” Horse was behind me.
“Yes Horse, I was just reading the rules of engagement to the king here, anything you want to add?”
“Thank you for sending Ayden into my life, I feel the magic and I feel your presence, thank you.” He bowed over.
That’s a little dramatic Horse.” He grinned so I bowed too and we left the room, I think I heard giggles again.
“Did you hear that Den?”
“Yes.” Horse is in tune and will be a good ally when I have to tell the king to settle down a bit.
We arrived back on the porch and Ayden was trying to wake up, he moaned a little when Horse picked him up.
“Have another ten minutes’ little fella, we are here watching over you.” Ayden smiled then yawned, he does need some more sleeps.
The big pot of stew was placed on the table and the boys cleaned it up, even Tush and Bubble had some. They glared at Rita who said,
“Yes boys, I can cook if I want to.”
“The recipe Rita we will give you, no peace if you don’t share it.”
“Nope, it’s mine to keep boys, sorry.”
“Guards to the ready,” Bubble shouted.
Abs and Hulk stood up.
“Take this infidel out the back and give her a good flogging.”
It was Spud to the rescue though, he dived across the table and shielded Rita from the two men. Everyone cracked up laughing, even Rita, she said she had already written it in their recipe book.
“Have a nice night boys.”
She was getting busy and they followed her up to the kitchen still laughing and still showing off their tight buns. I noticed later on she had made them wear black aprons, I think she’s punishing them.
Later that night I followed Evan down to the bushes, he dropped his shorts and I gave him nine inches of thick dick. He moaned and I shivered, it was so cold. He asked me to pump harder and I asked if we could go home and get warm. He sighed pulling his shorts up before laughing all the way back to the house.
In the morning I slipped the spare key to the camper to Spud.
“Just in case you and Ali want some privacy and warmth on these cold nights.”
He winked at me and put the key on his key ring. The boys again went into town to visit Jay and I think they will bring him home with them. I saw Tony cleaning out his tiny home yesterday, so it will be spick and span for his return.
He will need someone to help him in and out the shower so I thought I might talk to Abs later on and see if Hulk is not needed for a few days.
Tush sat with me again and said he didn’t want to tell me Hulk’s story, so he made one up. He apologized to me saying it wasn’t his story to tell and I understood, I told him that Jay and Hulk could maybe heal themselves, he agreed.
Ayden was into everything, he was basically fully walking now so Rita had to toddler proof the kitchen, she had placed a box of old pot lids in the corner and let him bang away at them. But every now and then I would hear,
“Enough Bubs.” Then Ayden would appear on the porch looking for me, so we had a great conversation about making too much noise. I started to teach him how to color in and he was pretty good too. My heart sank when Rita suggested we put him into play school for a day or so, just so he can get used to other kids. I half heartedly made inquiries but then I did something bad and told Rita it was full up until next year. She knew better and tapped me with the big spoon, then gave me a lecture on lying to her, she was okay with my decision and was just making a suggestion.
The kids were holding each other more and more and kissing deeply and I was very happy for them. Ali blended in and even though he had eastern looks he blended in beautifully with our guys. We had talked privately about David’s painting and I convinced him when I compared Ayden’s king with David’s beach scene. I explained the strokes were David’s and I wouldn’t know how to paint in his style, he had a moment then prayed to his god. Then he kissed and hugged me and is life is getting better and better.
Spud was lost to those dark eyes, he followed Ali around all day and they never went anywhere alone. If Ali was serving a customer Spud was behind him watching, that sort of thing. The last time I talked to Arras I told him we had put Ali to work in the cafe, the phone went quiet then he roared with laughter. I had also sent him a photo of the painting; I think he understood my explanation.
The winter was mild and the café wasn’t closed at all, word had got around that it was the trendiest place to eat. The write up in the good food guide was perfect and the heading read, ‘If you want the best hamburger in Victoria, head for Rita’s café in Golden Bay.’ Our Rita was famous and her business was like a madhouse for weeks after, she was even taking bookings in advance. I think she should think about expanding her dining area, but to do that her shady tree will have to come down. The curry nights just exploded, and Spud extended it to Thursday nights as well. Well actually Tush and Bubble did that for him, Spud was too busy being in love.
Alex and Blue had shouted themselves a trip back to Bali and were sunning themselves on Kuta beach and hopefully they will be home soon as everybody missed them. Ali got Horse’s men to finish the shop first, they had added a men’s and lady’s toilet and a small kitchen come tea room. I haven’t had the chance to ask Spud if he’s got Trip onto getting some machines yet.
The school holidays will be here soon then our long hot summer will arrive. I had let the fire go out and eventually cleaned it and set it up in case we had another cool night, the air con was enough for our bedrooms at the moment.
Jay was sent home covered in bruising and turned up for work red faced the next day. Tony sent him surfing but three big containers left Tony’s property the day after, it is beyond me how he gets it all done even though Horse, Donk and Trip helped him pack it. I had four paintings for Spencer but they were shipped on their own, I had to do it because it was Spencer who started all the madness for my works, and I will forever be grateful to him. Spud's paintings had arrived at Rory’s friend Marcel’s gallery in Paris and I was told by a good friend that Marcel was putting a big price tag on them.
More and more Jay came out of his shell and it was more embarrassment than anything, he felt so stupid, and more and more Hulk and he went surfing and watched movies together, sometimes with the boys. The language barrier was a hindrance but I was assured by Bubble that Hulk was trying to learn as many words as possible each day.
“He asked me to teach him the words for friendship and buddies and then he asked me what were the words for, I like you very much. He’s taken with Jay and he has been since he laid his eyes on him, he won’t hurt him Den.”
“I know Bubble; they do look good together I must say.”
“Well Hulk didn’t have a childhood like ordinary people did, I think Jay is making one for him and his heart flutters all the time apparently.” He smiled.
Nuts arrived back a week after Horse and was furious when he heard about Jay, he wanted to send him back home. I talked him out of it explaining that I didn’t think Jay would try that trick again, and I also worded him up on Hulk’s interest.
“The garage is up for sale I believe Nuts, you should try and talk Trip into buying it; he and Donk could make a go of it, don’t you think?”
“They could Den, but unfortunately the surf calls them all day so I don’t think many cars would get fixed.” He laughed.
I walked over to Spud’s house with Ayden one day and he was almost running, because he knew Horse would be there overseeing the build. He picked him up and kissed him and Bubs squealed.
“This shop will be up and running in the next week or two Den, just in time for the school holidays.”
“Has he got any machines yet?”
“I think so, Ali said it was taken care of and to let him know when they can start moving them into the shop.”
“I asked Trip but he’s not scouting for them, maybe Ali knows a place.”
Horse winked at me and pointed to the blue container.
“I think the king had fun finding them, but don’t quote me.”
“Oh.” I won’t say anything; I’ll just look surprised when the container is opened.
I looked around the rest of the house, the family room and kitchen were on the ground floor and It was massive, there were four ovens and four dishwashers; just amazing.
Upstairs were five bedrooms, Ali and Spud took up almost half the floor, it was spectacular. They had installed a huge skylight that opened so they could watch the stars at night and all throughout the house were all sorts of plugs and monitor boards. The technical side of it was mind blowing, the security was something out of this world.
The house at the back of the property was a double story unit with much the same set up as Ali’s. There was a room full of TV screens and I suppose the guards will take it in turns to monitor the cameras. In between the houses was a small pool, and it was small, but with so much house there wasn’t any room for a bigger one. The best thing was they had installed a wading pool come spa at one end, just big enough for Ayden to learn to swim.
Abs was very distracted the next day, he hardly said anything to anyone, only Hulk. I asked him what was happening but he just smiled and walked off. He was deep in conversation with Tiny on the beach when I took their breakfast down, something’s up and I’m not included me thinks. Before I picked up the basket I grabbed Tush and asked,
“Security issues Den, nothing for you to be concerned about.”
I watched as my boys had a last run then they started to come up to our tree, the day was mild and the sun was poking its head through the clouds. Bubs got a smacker as I’d missed him and Ayden got a ride on his board. We had leftover curry today so the guys looked at each other, smiled, then dug in. Ali, Spud, Jay and Hulk skimmed the shore then Hulk picked Jay up and ran him over to us, he was laughing his head off. Ali was pulled aside and Abs had a word in his ear, he nodded then rummaged in his bag for his phone.
“Excuse me I have to ring that dictator of a father of mine, I won’t be long Spudley.”
“Take your time my prince.” Spud sighed.
He spoke for ages, sometimes he smiled, sometimes he frowned, but I got the feeling everything was not okay.
Evan held Bubs and fed himself, he gave him a little rice and a tiny bit of potato, we have to get him used to eating curries because it’s his dad’s favorite food. I couldn’t help but smile because Jay was teaching Hulk some more English but he was not quite getting his tongue right. They were laughing like they were old friends.
Cyn’s house was almost identical to Tony’s, she had set up a showroom in the bottom half and would show off some of her exclusive items, if she gets a sale she will be happy but if she doesn’t that’s fine too. She will also use it as a photographic studio and was more suited to being used for that. Glass cabinets will hold very expensive ancient antiquity items, stuff from thousands of years ago and of course one offs. She would have them on her site and display them in her showroom. She was also building a large garage to house bigger items and I noticed she was darting back and forth to Tony’s whenever she came down here. Oh no! she’s darting upstairs to meet Abs, sorry my mistake.
I cleaned up and went back to my painting, I had started a new one and it was bugging me, I mean really bugging me. So I asked Tush again what was up and he answered that I had to talk to Abs, but I noticed his butt tightened up in his shorts as he walked off to serve yet another happy customer a Rita hamburger.
Spud and Ali’s shop was finished and most of their house was done in record time, the builders only had the finer things to do. I was over there one day talking in their amazing kitchen. Ayden had found the pot drawer and was banging away, it echoed through the very white contemporary house. Spud bailed him up and put him on his knee then he produced a coloring book for him to draw in.
“So when are your machines arriving Spud?”
“They are here Den, in the container Ali’s father sent them as a house warming present. We only have to unpack them and set them up, the guys said they can help us with that.”
“Great so they will be up to date ones then, not the old fashioned type?”
“No and yes, some are the old fashioned retro ones, and some are the latest gizmos, it will all be set up by next weekend then Ali and I are going to test them.” He giggled.
“Well they will be a big hit with the kids, are you going to serve food?”
“No Den, that’s Rita’s gig, I won’t have any food.”
“Good, what are you going to do about curry night?”
“We haven’t decided yet, we thought with Tush and Bubble’s help that Rita will do well. I think I will bow out and let her keep the profits, after all it was her idea in the first place. She only pushed me into it to make me hang around longer.” He smiled.
“Well according to Rory, Marcel is in love with your works, he’s putting a big price tag on your paintings so that will bring you more income.” I smiled.
“That’s if they are good enough.” I looked at Ali he slumped.
“For the one thousandth time Spud, they are world class so stop doing that, you’re always putting your work down. If you think they are crap don’t paint, do something else.”
“Yes my prince, they are world class, they are world class.” He repeated over and over again. I chuckled because it was a cute kind of thing for him to do, he has filled out beautifully, his hair was quite thick and long now that lost boy is nowhere to be seen, and an awesome, good looking young man had appeared.
Ali has started placing his paintings, the one of him, David and Spud ended over the mantle piece. The six series ones I did hung on the opposite wall and David’s were placed on the staircase wall, they were so much like mine it was uncanny. His most treasured one of David sat quietly in his office. I tried to get him to put it on a spare wall downstairs but he said it would offend Spud. I had spoken to Spud about it and he said he wanted it hung in their bedroom so they could both admire it. He’s growing up that boy, and I think he will eventually get his way, he knows David will always be in Ali’s life no matter what. He also doesn’t want any of Ali’s paintings to be shut away from the world, no secrets, no midnight walks to talk to long gone ghosts.
“So where do you want to hang your house warming present from us?”
“The one sitting on your porch.” I smiled.
Ali was the first up and he ran to the door, he then brought in the huge canvas of Ayden’s Eyes I had done for them. It was identical except the fairy folk weren’t in his eyes, they were having a party in his hair, I had hidden them amongst that big shock of blonde curls, it all worked. He was so grateful he couldn’t stop hugging me. I told him to let Cynthia auction it for him and he thumped me.
“Then I would have to bid on it Den, not fair.” He grinned.
“Where do I place it Den, it has to have a really special place so I can see it all the time.”
“Over your mantle kiddo, put the trio and David’s gorgeous painting in your bedroom, that way no one is left out.” He frowned but I think he got it. Ayden’s Eyes number two was placed where it should be and I thought I heard laughing when the boys finally hung it. Spud repeated my suggestion about the other two, the trio and David’s portrait. He said they should be together and he loved them both so much he wanted to look at them last thing at night, and first thing in the morning. So they should be hung in their bedroom and Ali’s face lit up, Spud is making everything easy for him.
Back to the porch with my Bubs who wanted to run this time, he wanted to see his gran. I watched him as he took the steps on his hands and knees, he can’t quite manage them yet.
“Nana!!” he screamed out.
“What?” Rita answered.
“Nana, sum juice for baby.”
“Please,” she chided him.
“Peese nana.” He got his juice and lots of nana cuddles then came out to find me. I lifted him up and he looked into my eyes and smiled.
“Dah.” The drink nipple squealed as it left his mouth.
“How are things over there?”
“Good honey, I got their paintings sorted out and they are going to unpack the machines for the shop. Are you going to be all right with out Spud’s help?”
“Oh yes Den, Tush and Bubble are a god send and I don’t have to hover over a hot stove anymore, they shoo me away when I try.” Rita chuckled.
“They are an awesome couple Den, and can cook just about anything. I have told them they can keep the profits from the curry nights but the said no, they wouldn’t keep it, so looks like I’m in the money again.”
“What’s are you going to do with it all baby?”
“Riley’s lease is up and I want to go him halves in a house down here, he has the money from the sale of the old one and I will put in half. It won’t be a lot but I don’t want him going short either, he has the kids to worry about.”
“That’s great, if you want a hand just let me know.”
“I will Den, but I doubt if that’s going to happen, Evan’s already offered.”
“He offered yesterday Den, don’t you two ever talk?”
“Yes we talk, but he never said anything about helping.”
“Well he did and I refused the offer.”
“Is Merle coming back soon?”
“I don’t know Den; she’s been away a long time now maybe I will ask Riley tonight.”
“And the boys when will they be back?”
“Two days’ time and I can’t wait to see them. I believe Blue’s become a poster boy for Surfs Up too, they had photographers following them around last week.”
“Well I hope they are paying him well.”
“They are Den, don’t stress.” She poured me another coffee.
“What would you like for lunch?”
“Just a chicken sandwich baby, I’m not really hungry.”
“You are so; it’s just your head is so busy thinking about other things.” She giggled then went to make my sandwich, I actually did feel a little hungry. My boy has drifted off for his noon nap this time, so I gently placed him in his bean bag. I found my latest work and set it up.
I wanted to paint the street scape. I had my folk riding bikes, skateboarding, playing skippy and hopscotch and Ayden was sunning himself again on a lifesaver’s chair across the road and looked adorable.
When I looked at it I saw happiness; and I felt it too, a few butterflies flittered in my tummy, maybe hunger pains? I looked it over one last time then I saw them, three dark shadows were standing next to one of the trees and were watching the porch, not the folk. It was strange but I never gave it another thought because I figured they were just shadows and were meant to be there. But it bugged me in the back of my mind, there’s something I wasn’t seeing.
Rita appeared with a big plate of pies, she winked at me then produced a stack of tomato sauce packets.
“Is that how it’s done Den?” she winked again.
“Yes thank you Rita, but there’s too many for me.” I laughed.
“They are for the boys, I can hear them showering and Ali and Spud are just walking out their gate.” She’s got a thousand eyes that woman. I felt a gentle kiss on the back of my neck and a hand squeezed my right peck.
“Did you have fun Bubs?”
“Yes Den, clean runs and no wipeouts today.”
“Oh, should we celebrate?”
“Later maybe, I’m hungry have you eaten?”
“Yes Bubs, but I could go half of a chicken pie.”
He cut one in half and placed it on a plate for me then had the other half; and a full one, he must be hungry. Donk was telling Horse about the gaming machines, apparently he couldn’t wait for Spud to open so he could take his money off him.
“Well the sooner you all help us set it up, the sooner you can start losing your money to us instead Mr. Donk.” Ali giggled.
“Is later today too late Ali, or I’m free tomorrow if that’s better?”
“Tomorrow will be fine Donk, your insolence towards your prince will get you a thorough horse whipping this afternoon.” The whole table burst into laughter. Donk had a comeback though,
“Is that before or after I put you on my knee and give you a good old fashioned spanking for being a spoilt brat?”
“Oh yes, please sir, Mr. Donk,” Ali replied then folded over, he couldn’t stop laughing.
Evan opened the shop around two and immediately he got busy with some backpackers and day trippers wanting to look. They spent loads of money and walked out with bags of his goods. He smiled at me so I told him to sit down and hold my hand. He did that but as Horse picked up our now fully awake son, we dashed into the bedroom for some afternoon love making.
That night my bad feelings arrived again, no urgent need to paint but a sort of panicked feeling that came and went just as fast. I knew something was about to happen but I didn’t share it with anyone except Abs. I pulled him aside and showed him the painting and he looked blankly at me and said,
“We know about it and we are prepared Den, please don’t dwell.”
He then walked away and I had my answer. Whatever is about to happen will be handled by the guards, not me or us, but my butterflies and feelings had put me on notice. I held onto Evan and I couldn’t get to sleep, something was about to happen and I didn’t know what. I quietly slipped out of bed and checked our son, he seemed peaceful enough so I headed for the porch. I thought I might sit there for awhile until the feeling of dread left me.
I quietly sat on the porch in the dark. There was no particular reason for this that I could really put my finger on, only I felt uneasy, like a gloom had come over our house. Out of the corner of my eye I saw movement, my head snapped around and over at the foreshore park I saw a figure in the tea trees, it was just a shadow, was the moon was playing tricks? I felt butterflies awakening, they were very subtle at first and as I watched they got heavier and heavier. I slowly slid off my chair and crept to the railing to get a better look. I saw someone and my feelings weren’t nice so I fumbled for my phone.
“Abs it’s Den, there’s someone creeping around the foreshore park, they are moving towards Ali’s house.”
“We know Den, go inside and lock yourself in, we’ve got this.” He hung up but I stupidly stayed where I was and watched. It was dead quiet and not even a stray bug sound was heard.
I looked towards Tony’s shop and saw nothing.
Then I saw it, a black figure coming from the same direction so I got on my phone again.
“Abs, there’s two of them.”
“We got it Den, please calm down and lock the doors.”
I did as I was told this time because the dread I felt wasn’t nice, and I wanted to check on Bub and Ayden.
I didn’t put any lights on when I entered his room. I saw him in the moonlight and he was asleep but uncomfortable looking. I stroked his hair and tried to calm him, but suddenly his eyes shot open, and they were black.