Sunday, May 30, 2010

Chapter 35

During the night Karen couldn't sleep and was tossing around, waking Sidney up.

"Alright, either tell me what's wrong or get the hell out of bed."

"Sorry I can't sleep."

"Well that's apparent. What's the matter?"

"I had a run in with Jordan in the kitchen after I came out of the bathroom."

"What did he do?" Sidney said getting angry.

"Nothing, it's what he said."

"Then what did he say to you?"

"That him and Brit are now engaged and he'll be around for us to be one big happy family."

"When did they get engaged?"

"I don't know. He just said he asked her to marry him when I told him it was good to see them happy and together."

"So this is just another way to stay near you?"

"What's with all the questions?"

"Well what you're talking about keeps stirring up other questions. So what are you afraid of?"

"That now with the babies born, I'm scared he may try something for real."

Sidney sat up "I will never let that happen, you know that right?"

"I know but there will be some moment you won't be around."

"You're right, I can't be around you all the time but we can change that."

"I am not taking on a bodyguard Sid."

"Not what I meant. We will just talk about it and come up with a plan to make you always with someone or just not in the same place as Jordan."

"Ok, I think we can work it out that way."

"Good, now will you go to sleep."

Karen cuddled into him "I think I can now." She laid there and still couldn't fall right asleep but the tiredness did soon take over.

It had been a few days since the babies were born and Karen was already getting antsy. She wasn't really allowed to do anything and the annoying part was when she tried to do something when Sidney wasn't home, she saw all these post-it notes all around the house telling her to stop and go sit down. Karen had collected all of them and saved them, waiting for the perfect time to give them back to him.

Karen was coming from the basement when she heard a car pull up. She walked as fast as she could without hurting herself and went to sit down on the couch. A minute later, Sidney came through the door and saw her sitting there with a smile.

"Hey baby" he said coming over to give her a kiss.

"Hey, how was practice?"

"It was good" he said looking at her.

"What's with the look?"

"What did you just do?"

"I didn't do anything."

"Uh huh" Sidney said getting up and walking around.

"What are you doing?" she asked watching him walk around the house. Sidney came back and stood at the doorway "did you find something?"

"Come here."

"I'm suppose to be resting."

"Just for a second baby." Karen got up and walked over to him and he led her to the basement door, opening it "do you hear something?"

Karen knew what he was hearing "no, I don't. You've always had dog ears to hear the most weird noises" she said walking away but was stopped.

"You put a load of laundry in didn't you?" he said standing there staring at her.

"No...why would could be the furnace...stop staring at me like that...ok, fine. Yes I put a load of laundry in the washer a few minutes ago before you came home. Happy now Mr. Caveman, won't let his wife do anything" she said walking back to the living room.

"I'm not the one telling you not to do anything, those are doctor's orders baby."

"I know but I'm bored not being able to do anything. Even a simple walk to the kitchen for something to drink I get a note" she said pulling out a post-it and putting it on his chest. "When I get up to go outside and maybe take a short walk, there's a note on the door" putting another one on his leg. "Getting up and going to the BATHROOM, there's a note on the mirror" she said putting it on his ballcap. "Note, note, note note note" Karen put each note on him and all on his face.

"Baby, I just want to remind you to be careful" he said trying to take the post-its off his face but Karen slapped his hand away.

"I have about 20 more, would you like to see them?"

"No, I know what they already say. Look, I'm sorry but I'm worried about you alright" he said taking them off his face and putting them on his legs.

"I know we have a six week no sex clause, but if one night I want to pleasure you are you going to put a post-it on your body to stop me?"

"I get where you're going with this. You can be limited but you can also do normal things until you say it's too much."

"Sid, I love you and I am not going to jeopardize my health to cause more problems. I know what I can and can't do before I feel like I've strained myself. That load I put in was the sheets off our bed. I do things in small amounts and I've been fine."

"You have?"

"Oh stop pretending to be shocked, you know I have been doing things. Dinner doesn't magically appear or fresh sheets don't remake the bed themselves. I'm fine."

"How about I let you go into work for two days out of the week? If you go in with me like before and then work until I get done with practice and my work outs, then we can head home and it'll get you out of the house." Sidney saw Karen smile and get excited "but Ray will know to not let you run around the arena and you will still take it easy."

"I can agree to that" she said kissing him "I love you."

"You better" he said getting a look from her "and I love you too baby."

A couple days later and Sidney was going in for practice and Karen was right with him. He walked her up to the offices and to her dismay heard him tell Ray her limited abilities. Ray just smiled when he looked behind Sidney and saw Karen making faces behind his back. When Sidney turned around, Karen just smiled and he shook his head leaving, giving her a kiss.

A few hours later, Karen had left Ray's office and headed down towards the locker room to find Sidney, instead she found Jordan.

"Hey beautiful. Hope you came to see me?"

"Sorry to disappoint you but I'm looking for my husband."

"If you divorce him, I could be your husband."

"You're going to be my sister's husband so why continue to pursue me?"

"You know why."

"Actually I don't. All I keep hearing is this bullshit how you can't get over me. How much rejection can you take Jordan?"

As soon as she said it, Karen knew she regretted it. Jordan got an unfamiliar look in his eyes and pushed her against the wall "I can always make you want me as much as I want you."

"Don't flatter yourself."

Jordan held onto her against the wall but let his hands slip under her shirt "Ooo, you're getting your body back I see" he said feeling her stomach.

"Stop it Jordan."

"And your breasts..." he said moving his hands to the bottom of her breasts and caressing around the sides "are the way I like them, nice and round." Karen's breathing started to get faster but it wasn't from him turning her on, it was out of fear.

"Stop touching me now."

Karen felt Jordan move his hands to her waist and the band of her jeans, moving his finger right above it "feel like getting caught" he said trying to unbutton her jeans.

Karen was able to fight her fear and lift her arms, pushing Jordan away with her hands "I said STOP IT!" She got louder with her demands and when Jordan scowled, he came back at her and pressed his body tighter against her.

"Wrong move beautiful. You want to play rough, let me show you rough."

Before Jordan could attack her lips, Karen felt him being pulled off her and slightly thanked God it was Sidney. Before Karen could say anything, she saw Sidney pull his arm back and hit Jordan square in the jaw. Next thing, Jordan came back hitting Sidney on the cheek and a full blown fight was happening infront of her in the hallway.

Karen couldn't stand to see them exchanging punches and throwing each other against the wall "stop it..." no response "I said STOP IT!!! Sidney? Jordan? BOTH OF YOU, STOP!!!!" Karen screamed at the top of her lungs but nothing happened until she saw some of the guys run past her to break up the teammates. Max went over to Karen, who was crying uncontrollably and walked her away from them.

"Damn it, what's going on here?" Coach Dan yelled at both players who now had red marks and blood on their faces.

"Just a misunderstanding Coach" Jordan said.

"Bullshit, he had his hands all over my wife and I wasn't about to deal with his shit excuses" Sidney said as they fought to get back at each other.

"ENOUGH! Crosby, my office NOW!" Jordan managed to get out of Geno's and Jay McKee's grasp and smirk walking back into the locker room. Billy and Tanger still had a hold of Sidney "That's it, practice is over, everyone head home. Crosby, now." Sidney just nodded and Coach Dan walked back into the locker room with everyone else.

"What the hell was that all about?" Tanger asked Sidney.

"You might as well know, Jordan has been after Karen and he got too close for my liking."

"That doesn't make any sense Sid" Billy asked "talk."

"Jordan and Karen had an affair awhile back. It was over when I caught them, we made up and got back together, but Jordan never got over his feelings for her and that's why he's been pursuing her constantly. I just didn't think he was that dumb to take it this far."

Billy looked around "where's Karen at?"

"I think Max has her and took her away so she wouldn't watch these two rip each other apart" Tanger said.

"I need to find her" Sidney said trying to get away from them.

"I will go find them, you go see Coach Dan" Billy insisted. Sidney just looked at him and then nodded going into the locker room as Billy left to find Karen. He walked a ways down the hallway and saw Max holding Karen and he could tell she was still crying. Billy put his hand on her back and offered a sad smile when she looked at him "you ok?"

"Yeah" she nodded "is Sid ok?"

"He's fine. I think he surprised us all, we didn't think he had that in him" he said to get Karen to let out a small laugh. "They're both in there talking to coach, so can I take you home?"

"I can take her" Max said.

"Actually, I'd rather wait for Sidney."

"Karen, I don't think that's a good idea right now. We don't know how long he'll be talking with coach."

Karen looked between Max and Billy "you're right. One of you can take me home, if you don't mind."

Max smiled and Billy hugged her "neither of us do. Max why don't you stay with her and I will go change and take her home."

"Sounds good."

"I don't how to handle having two such fine looking bodyguards."

"Well Nat would kill me if she knew I left you alone for Jordan to try and get to you again, so it's kind of an unwritten rule to look after your wife's best friend."

"And my wife would just kill me for not helping out a friend."

"You guys are the best, thank you."

"It's our pleasure Karen" Max said.

"Absolutely. Let me go change and I will meet you in a few minutes." Karen just nodded and Billy ran to get changed. Max took her towards the seats so they could sit and talk in private.

Meanwhile in Coach Dan's office...

"What the hell got into the two of you? I pretended to not notice the tension on the ice during practice or games but this is totally uncalled for."

"Like I said, it was a misunderstanding" Jordan said.

"Stop saying that, you had an agenda and it didn't happen."

"It would have if you didn't show up."

"Fuck you Jordan."

"Sid, enough and Jordan that was uncalled for. I want to know what is going on, now."

"Make him leave and I will tell you" Sidney said after a few minutes of silence.

Dan looked to Jordan who just shrugged his shoulders "alright, Staal go home and we'll talk tomorrow."

Jordan left but smirked at Sidney before leaving the office. If he could, Sidney would have jumped out of his chair to grab him but he restrained himself and took a deep breath before telling Dan everything.

Karen was still sitting with Max in the arena seats waiting for Billy "thanks for staying with me."

"You know I want you safe."

"Could you not tell Nat about this. I don't want her to worry since she doesn't know about Jordan's pursuing of me since we broke it off."

"So it is all over with him?"

"Yes" Karen said almost in a defensive tone "before Sid and I got back together I knew it was over then. It was over when he caught us."

"Ok, I just wanted to make sure. Staalsy has this way with women and most find it very hard to say no to him."

"Just like you before you found Nattie."

"What do you take me for?"

"A womanizer?"

"Ok, that may be somewhat true. I enjoy women, what man doesn't."

"Hopefully my Sidney is to only want one. Most days I still can't believe he chose to stay with me when he could have just left and not looked back."

"Karen, Sid is one of my best friends and from the day he saw you, it was over and there wasn't going to be anyone else."

"Did he confide in you when all this happened?"

"No, I didn't know anything about it until Natalie told me what you told her. Why?"

"I just wanted to hear what he had to say about it when he caught us. I didn't know if he would have opened up knowing how private he is."

"It was probably for the best because the media didn't pick up on it."

"But who's to say they won't pick up on this" Karen said as Max just nodded his head. Soon, Billy showed up and him and Karen left. Max told her that he would tell Sidney where she was and everything would be ok.

Back in Coach Dan's office...

"So let me get this straight" Dan started "before you and Karen met, she and Jordan dated. They called it quits when you asked her out and started dating but still met up one more time while you were together."

"Yeah, and after we got married I guess they continued to sneak around."

"Until you caught them." Sidney just nodded "I can see where you have hatred towards him."

"Karen said it was over and I believe her. Everything that's happened, Jordan had approached her. After we won the Cup and I was with the Media, he pinned her to the wall and kissed her. When she told me on our way back to Nova Scotia what happened, I let it go thinking he was done. Then when I saw him at Olympic training camp, it all came back and I decked him."

"You hit him?"

"He was standing there laughing with his brothers and my anger just festered. Can you blame me?"

"No I don't. So what happened out in the hallway?"

"I heard a women's voice yell 'stop it' and when I walked out I saw he had Karen pinned up against the wall and his hands were on her. I was just protecting what's mine Coach."

"I understand Sid and I'm not going to punish you guys..."


"I will have a talk with Jordan tomorrow before practice and if he loves playing here, the threat of leave Karen alone or he will be traded will be issued. It doesn't matter the circumstance leading up to what happened, he crossed a line and that won't be tolerated."

"You know, Jordan is still a friend, even through everything and him getting traded isn't what I want. I know we have a strong team and a good shot to repeat, I don't want to be the one to disrupt that."

"If Jordan can't leave your wife alone, we'll make it to where you had nothing to do with it."

"I just want it all over. Karen just had the babies a week ago and I don't want to constantly worry about her when they come home in a month."

"It'll be ok Sid. Why don't you grab a shower and head home to see her. I think either Max or Billy took her home."

"Thanks Coach, I appreciate it."

"Just doing what's best for the team Sid. I hope Karen's alright."

"I'll tell her" he said before leaving the coach's room and heading into the locker room. He saw Max coming from the shower and walking towards him.

"Billy took her home man and he'll stay with her until you get there."

"Thanks man, I owe you both for taking care of her."

"You know, we were talking waiting for Billy and Karen wondered if you talked to anyone about what happened when you caught them."

"Not really. How can you go to a trusted friend and say you just walked in on your naked wife with another guy, who's suppose to be your friend, touching her and knowing what they're about to go do?"

"I guess she was just curious to what you said about it, like how you felt."

"I felt sick and crushed. I saw the love of my life break my heart. What would you do if you saw Natalie in the same scenerio?"

"I'd feel the same way and can imagine how you felt. Just remember that this is all Jordan, Karen never wants anything to do with him again."

"I know and it helps hearing it from you."

"Anything for you Sid, besides, if you didn't have me to talk to who would you go to?"

Sidney looked around the locker room "I think I have a lot of choices" he said getting the two to laugh. Max got up and went to get dressed as Sidney got undressed to get his shower and head home to see Karen.

Billy had pulled into the driveway and they both got out heading inside.

"Thanks for bringing me home, you've been a great friend for not knowing what's going on."

"We're a family, it's the least I can do."

"Can I get you something to drink or eat?"

"A drink would be great" he said following her to the kitchen. Karen poured two glasses of iced tea and they went to sit down in the living room "excited about gettting the babies in a month?"

"Yeah. We went to the hospital last night and they took them off one of the machines because they're getting stronger. I can't wait to hold them and feed them."

"Let me tell you, when my daughter was born there was no feeling in the world like it. I could tell Sid has been anxious ever since you told him you were pregnant. I remember him coming in with this goofy smile everyday after you two told us. It was like his life was finally into place."

"Until I almost screwed it up."

"Karen, you can't keep dwelling on it. Look, a lot of hockey players have affairs on the road and some wives find out, others don't. Yes, you got caught but it got you to come to your senses and know where your heart lies. Can I ask why you did it?"

"I met Jordan before I met Sidney. We had a couple fun nights and there was some feelings brewing. But when Sid finally asked me out, we had so much fun together and I began to feel torn between them. The more time I spent with Sidney, the less time I saw Jordan. We got together one night with some other friends and ended up in bed. I thought that was the last time because Sid had asked me to marry him and I knew who I wanted to be with. After we got married, Jordan started seeing my sister Britnie and the four of us were inseparatable. I guess being that close to Jordan again brought back some of those feelings and we began sneaking around again. He became a force bigger than me Billy that I couldn't stop myself. Sid catching us brought me back to reality."

"Most of the time, that's what it takes."

"I hurt him" she said letting the tears fill her eyes.

"But he's forgiven you."

"I know but it still goes back to being the one to hurt him."

"But he saved you today. I think he's not hurting anymore."

"Yeah I guess you're right" she said with a smile "would you like to see the babies' room?"

"I would love too" they smiled at each other and headed upstairs.

"Sid is working on Sidney's side and I'm going to decorate Trina Nicole's."

"I can see the contrast now, one side all hockey and the other all pretty in pink."

"Well does sell women's jerseys in pink."

"So which one do you think will have daddy's skills?"

"You know Sid would love nothing more for Sidney to follow in his footsteps, but I would love to see Trina Nicole out there too. I guess the pipe dream would be to have Sid still playing when they both turn 18 and be on the same line with their dad."

"You never know, that could happen."

"As long as Sid stays healthy for 18 more years."

"You're joking right? That kid will be playing with a walker if he could" Billy said to get Karen laughing. They left the room a few minutes later and Karen told Billy she was going to use the bathroom and would meet him downstairs. He left her alone and went back down, meeting Sidney as he came through the door.

"Where's Karen? Is she alright?" Sidney asked frantic not seeing her with him.

"Relax, she in the bathroom and will be down in a minute."

"Oh, ok. Thanks for driving her home."

"It was my pleasure. She's a sweet girl and I'm glad to have spent time with her, even if it was under these circumstances. So what did Dan tell you?"

"This goes no further, but if Jordan doesn't take his warning to stay away from Karen, then they are going to trade him."

"Are you serious?"

"Dan figures if he loves playing here like the rest of us, he'll heed the warning."

"You don't think he will?"

"It'll either be one of three things...he gets traded, gets arrested for sexual assault, or I kill him."


"He has no right to keep going after her Billy."

"And your angry right now, which I understand, but two of the three is a little extreme."

"I know and you know he would get traded before the other two but that's all I can think about right now...punishing him."

"Well leave that up to Dan, Ray, and Mario. I'm going to head out and let you two be alone. Tell Karen I said bye and I'll see you at the rink tomorrow, hopefully with a cooler head."

"It will be. Thanks again" he told him and closed the door behind him. When he turned around, he saw Karen was coming down the stairs and walked over to him. No words needed, Sidney wrapped his arms around her waist and Karen melted into his touch, letting the tears fall as she stroked the back of his head.

"Thank you for saving me" she whispered.

"I will always save you baby" he whispered back as they continued to hold each other.

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