"Well hello to you too." Nick says as he pulls me off his chest. "I see you are on your way out."
"I was going for a walk if you must know Nicholas." I shake my head at him. "You can join me if you want. Not like you would give me the choice if I wanted you to come or not."
He links arms with me and starts walking down the driveway. "You're right. I wouldn't have."
"You know I went six damn years without seeing you, now you keep showing up in my life. What the last three days?" I turn my head to the side as I look at him. "You stocking me Jerry?" He lets out a groan. "What's wrong Jerry J?"
"Why must you call me that? I don't let anyone call me Jerry."
"Why must you stock me?" I shoot back at him. "And how the hell did you find out where I live?" I stop in the middle of the sidewalk. "Really how did you find out where I live?"
"Mike loves me, and will tell me anything." I roll my eyes at him. "Especially when I tell him I had an idea for a bonus song for your album." He shrugs his shoulders as my mouth falls open.
"Nicholas Jerry Jonas! You lied! I can tell on your face that you don't have a song for me." I slapped his arm as I pulled my arm out of his. "What do you really want?"
"To talk about...."
"No. I am not talking about your brother with you." We round the corner leaving my street behind us. "That has nothing to do with you."
"Actually." He laughs at me. "Not everything is about you. I wanted to talk to you about Priyanka." I give him apologetic look. "I have a date with her soon, an actual date. No PR bullshit, no friends, just her and myself." I can see he is starting to freak just thinking about it. "I need your advice on where to go."
"Cook for her. Have her come to your place, and cook her food. You're Italian Nicky. You can cook. She will love it. And there won't be any paparazzi to get every second of your date."
"I just don't want her to get the wrong idea. I don't want her to think I just want to get in her pants." He lets out a sigh. "But I don't want everyone staring as us as I try to get to know her."
Before I could stop the words from coming out of my mouth, or even think about what I was saying. "Just have it at my place. If you want." Nick stops in his tracks. "I mean it would help take some of the edge off for you. I wouldn't be home. I would go to Jaime's house." I stop and look at him. "So?"
"How did I live six years without my best friend?" He scoops me into a bear hug as I let out a laugh. "You are the best person in the world. But that's too much, I can just have it at my place." He starts spinning us around.
"Put me down!" I yell out as he squeezes me. "I am not joking."
"What are you going to do abo-" before he can even finish his sentence, I pull on his hair, and he quickly drops me to the ground. "OW!"
"Listen to me the first time and I won't have to do that you dumb ass." I start walking down the sidewalk. "I came on this walk to clear my head."
"From what? My brother?" I let out a huff and walk faster away from him. "I'll take that as a yes." He catches up to me quickly. "You know, he still has the same number. You can call him."
"About this date." I quickly change the subject. "What day is it? How many dates does this make?"
"Friday." A smile, full on toothy smile, very not Nick. "And it's our first date just us." I can tell he is excited but scared at the same time.
"You really like her, don't you?" He nods without saying anything. "I'm glad you finally found your person Nick."
I can feel his eyes roll without even looking his way. "You still on the Grey's shit."
He puts his arm around me as we start walking back to my house. "Chelsea, you know you are my person." He lets out a laugh as he says the words. "And I can't believe I even said that." I grab ahold of his hand that is across my shoulder as we walk. I can hear the sound of pictures being taken in the background, but we both ignore them as we walk.
"Priyanka knows we are just best friends, right? I don't want her seeing pictures of us looking well very much like a couple and getting jealous." I walk through my front door with Nick following behind me. I flop down on the couch, as Nick slowly looks around my house at the pictures hanging on the walls.
"She knows." He stops on a picture of my family. He runs his fingers across my parents. "I miss them. They always treated all of us like sons, not just Joe. Some of the best times of my life where summers at their place."
"I miss them too." I let out a small sigh. "It'll be three years this year that they have been gone." A small tear comes out and I quickly wipe it away. "Thank you for sending flowers by the way." He looks at me with sadness in his eyes. "I loved the flowers from Jerry J."
"If I couldn't be there, I would be damned if I didn't send you something." He gives me a small smile. "I felt horrible that I couldn't make it." I shake my head at him, brushing it off. He moves along to see a recent picture of Addison. "She's beautiful. She looks like you."
"Thank you. She's the light of my life." A smile breaks out on my face. "She's kept me going when I never thought I would be able to. She's funny, caring, sweet, full of life, has no fear." Nick walks towards the couch. "I still can't believe that she is my daughter, that I get to raise her. I am so blessed to be her mother."
Nick sits beside me not saying a word. I know he wants to ask more about Addison. I can see his wheels are turning. Thankfully his phone stopped him from asking any questions. "Hey Joe." He shoots me a look as he answers the phone. "No, I'm just sitting at Chelsea's house." I roll my eyes at him and give him a soft kick in the ribs. "Shit, I can't believe I forgot. I'll be right there."
After hanging up from the call, he stands up and walks towards the door. "Sorry, I have to go, I forgot we had to nail down some plans to fly to see our parents, Frank, and Kev and his girls." He wraps me in a hug. "Love you Chels." He squeezes me a little too tight.
"Jerry, I love you too but if you squeeze me anymore you will probably kill me." He lets out a soft chuckle as he lets me go, planting a small kiss on my forehead he exists my house and shuts the door behind him.
"Joe, I swear to god, if you do not straighten up, I am gone." I let out with a sigh. "I cannot take much more of all this shit." I pick up pillows, blankets, cushions from the floor. This is just half the shit he threw last night, while yelling at me. He lays on the couch covering his face from the sun. His hair is a mess, I believe he's been wearing the same clothes for the last two days.
"Then leave. If you can't take anymore of me just leave." His voice comes out cold. I know he doesn't mean this; he can't mean this. I toss a pillow at him, hitting him in the face. "What the fuck!" He jumps off the couch, and faces me. "What was the for?!"
"You want me to leave? You don't want to even try to get better for me?" My words come out in a whisper. "I thought you loved me." I shake my head and walk away from him. I grab my keys from the table by our entrance, and walk out of the house.
He comes running outside, maybe this is it, maybe he will finally change. I turn around and look at him, he's wearing his famous smirk as he looks me over.
"If you're leaving, don't tease me, just leave me." He raises an eyebrow waiting for my next move. I quickly walk over to him, looking him in the eye I can see he isn't bluffing. He means this. Before I could even process what I was about to do, my hand connects with his jaw.
"Fuck you Joseph."
With that, I get in my car and drive away.
I haven't heard from Joe since he dropped me off three weeks ago, and I can't help but think it's for the best. At our best we were almost perfect, at our worse we were so toxic I couldn't think straight. I don't want to get back in the habit with him. I can't. Addison can't have that life. I refuse to let her.
"Mama!" Addie comes bouncing inside from the backyard. "Can we go to the park?" Jake isn't far behind her, and I can already see his pleading eyes. "Please mama?"
"Of course, babe." Her and Jake squeal and take off for the door. I hurry behind them, grabbing my purse and keys on the way out the door. The drive is short to the park, it was one of the things that I loved about this house. It has the privacy that I need but still has a park within a five-minute drive. I hardly had time to put the car in park for the to take off their seat belts and open their doors. "Slow down you two. The park isn't going anywhere." I get out of the car and easily shut their car door.
They are barely holding in their excitement, I let out a sigh. "What are you waiting for? Go." Without a word they both take off towards the playground quickly mixing in with the other kids. I find an empty bench and start scrolling down Twitter.
"Chelsea Jackson and Nick Jonas?! This is the reunion I've been waiting for! #FriendshipGoals" I read the tweet as I look over the attached pictures of Nick and I taking a walk, and going out to eat.
"Joe Jonas seen with new woman. First time since rehab stay six years ago. Getting hot and heavy in an alley no less." I take a deep breath as I look over the pictures.
"Fuck. Fuck. Fuck" You clearly can't see that it is me in the pictures. So that will save from going public, but Nick will know it's us. He will never let this go. He'll read more into than I want.
I put my phone in my purse and look up to see Addie and Jake playing with a group of kids. Times like this, her enter Joe comes out. All the kids are looking at her like she is their leader, they can't help but laugh at all her silly moves and jokes. She fits in with anyone, never judges a soul. Treats people with such kindness, and sweetness. She got my looks but she got the very best of her father.
Everything I ever loved about him. She got.
My phone ringing brings me out of my thoughts. "Hey Jaime. We are at the park." She lets out a laugh. "They begged."
"I'll be there in three. I was just on my way to pick Jake up. But I am sure I won't be able to get them to leave the park." She lets out a laugh and hangs up the phone. Within minutes she is sitting beside me. "You and Nick becoming friends again I have been seeing."
I just nod at her with a small smile. "You know Nick has always been my male you. He's always been my rock. I can be friends with him, and not let anything get out of control with the rest of the family."
"Maybe it wouldn't be a bad thing if it did." Jamie shrugs. "Addison should have all her family. All she has is us-" She put her hand up to shut me up before I can say anything. "I know we are enough; I know she won't miss out on a single ounce of love with us. Just after mom and dad." She pauses for a second before continuing. "Addie has a whole other set of grandparents, two uncles, two beautiful cousins, an aunt, and more importantly a father who would love her." She looks over at me. "Don't keep her away from them anymore. Don't keep yourself from them anymore." Jaime wipes the tears from my face, tears that I didn't even know were there. "Go, I got Addie for the rest of the day. Go." I quickly go the Addie that I am leaving and Aunt Jaime is going to stay at the park with them. She gives me a kiss and runs off. Hurrying to my car, I pull out my phone and call Nick.
"I knew you'd miss me." Nick answers with a laugh. "What's up Chelsea?"
"I need you to help me out with something." I start my car, moments after I sit down, buckling my seat belt. "Something with your brother."
"Chelsea. You shou-"
"No Nicholas. Listen to me." I make the short drive back to my house in record time. "I know you know about Addison. I am done with all the bullshit games that got started years ago. I want you all to be in her life. I want you all to be in my life." I park my car, and sprint into my house. "I want this. You all deserve to be in Addie's life. I've fucked up enough keeping you all away from her for all these years. I don't want to keep making mistakes."
"Joe's gone Chelsea." His voice is flat. "He left yesterday. He said he wanted to find himself, and he took off. He didn't tell any of us where he was going and he shut his phone off." My heart falls at his response, I could feel the tears forming in my eyes. "I'm so sorry."
"This doesn't change anything. Addie can still meet you and everyone else. Can you set this up for me? Addison and myself will fly out to New Jersey so Kev and Dani don't have to take their daughters anywhere. I know their youngest is still very young."
"Of course, I will get this set up. I'll call them all right now."
"Thank you, Jerry J., I love you more than you know." Without waiting for a response, I hung up the phone.