Well I went and did it again. I got involved in yet another interactive fan fiction story. This time, my character was paired with Richie (much more to my liking). That story wrapped in early November 2008, and I had been asked to assemble the "story posts", that is, the posts that tell Richie and Jen's story, in one place for people to read.

So I'm doing it.

I'm having to add some filler as I go, as there were lengthy pauses between the verbose posts I made, but I'm trying to keep the flow of the story going.

The Richie/Jen story is only half of the fan fic project. The other half was a Jon/T story. That is not explored here at all. In fact, very little mention is made. Just enough so it isn't a surprise when T shows up at various points.

If anything is confusing, please let me know. I've been living this character for the better part of the last eight months, and her memories are mine. I forget, sometimes, that you all can't see into my head.

I hope you enjoy the story. It starts here.

~ Hath

Mission: Impossible

Monday, April 6, 2009
Richie watched her go, and took internal stock of his feelings. He was a little surprised that he was already thinking ‘forever’ with Jennifer. Hell, he shouldn’t think like that AT LEAST until he introduced her to Ava and his mother. He wondered how best to bring Jennifer together with the other important women in his life. He pulled out his cell and pressed a button, connecting to Jon’s voice mail.

“Man, I need you to help me figure out the best way to tell Ava about Jennifer. Call me back.”

He hung up and unfolded the piece of paper she had given him before getting out of the car.

Your mission, Rich, should you decide to accept it, is... to get through the gate, and into the house before the alarms go off, the police show up, and you get arrested. Or shot.

The gate code and alarm code are both 070806. You have 5 seconds to get through the gate. You have 30 seconds to get the house’s alarm code right.

You should enter through the back door.

As usual, should you or any member of your B.J. Force be captured or killed, the secretary will disavow any knowledge of your existence. This note will self-destruct in five seconds. Good luck, Rich.

~ Jennifer

Richie laughed his ass off. Her sense of humor was a little off, but just perfect. Ava was definitely going to love her. He watched the landscape go by, changing from city to highway to suburb. He smiled when they took the exit, number 17B off the highway, to her town. They passed normal town things; gas stations, jewelry stores, restaurants, drug stores, and the college where she went to school. He made a note to have her give him the tour when he came back next week, or over the weekend.

They made several more turns, and finally a long driveway loomed in front of them. Halfway up stood an imposing wrought-iron gate. He reached out and dialed the code into the keypad on a pole about 10 feet from the gate, and the gate quickly slid open. There was a computerized voice that started a countdown. “Five seconds,” it said, then counted down to zero. By that time, the sedan had passed through the gates. At zero the gate slid shut noiselessly but quickly.

“Damn,” Richie whispered. She took her security seriously. The driveway meandered a good quarter mile further, flanked by a tree-lined pond on one side and rolling fields on the other. Coming around a corner, the house came into view. He let out a low whistle.

The house was a late 19th century Tudor mansion, set up on a hill. He counted eight fireplaces and four dormers. The car followed the driveway around to the back of the house, and parked. There was a six-bay garage off to one side, connected to the house by a long hallway. Beyond the garage, he could see another house on the property. It looked like it had a two-car garage. He shook his head. Jennifer was holding out. He couldn’t wait to rub this shit in David’s face.

The driver put Richie’s gear on the back steps and took off, hoping to hell he could get through the gate before the damned thing sheared his car in half.

Richie used the key Jennifer had given him to unlock the heavy oak door. He pushed it open and gasped, looking at her kitchen. The discrete beep of the alarm sounded, rousing him from his reverie. He could just imagine the headlines if the police had to come out because he didn’t get the code in on time. Richie found the panel to the left of the door, and quickly dialed in the code. “Welcome home” flashed on the control panel, and the beep stopped. Richie brought in his bags and shut the door behind him. He sat on one of the island benches, and pulled out his phone.

“Hi, this is Jennifer, how can I help you?” Richie thought she sounded distracted, and decided to have a little fun.

“I’m looking for a Ms. Jennifer Petruzzo?” He had put on an awful Bostonian accent, and had to put his hand over the mouthpiece to keep from laughing.

“Speaking,” Jennifer was confused, but sufficiently intrigued.

“Yeah, well, there was a repoaht of an alahm going off at your prahpitee, and we wanted to make sure everything was alright.”

Jennifer was quiet for a moment. “Rich, is that you? You ass, that’s not how the monitored service works. And, fuh the reckid, that is the WORST fake Bahstin accent evah.” She snickered.

Richie laughed. “Hey baby, I just wanted to let you know I was here. I wanna make dinner, can I take the bike to the store?”

Jennifer laughed. “Of course. Keys are in the garage on the pegboard. He’s gassed up. Saddle bags and assorted leather is in there too, and the store is out the driveway, take a right, out to the main road, and take a left. Go ‘til you find it.”

“Just like that?” Richie was surprised.

“You know how to ride, right?” She didn’t get what the big deal was.


“Then it’s fine. I’m leaving on the 4:30 train, should be home by 6.”

“See you then, sweetheart,” Richie said. “Have a good day.”

“Thanks, babe, you too. Call me if you need anything.” She was smiling when she hung up.

Throughout the rest of the day, Richie called Jennifer several times, asking where things were, and she was a good sport, answering all his questions. By early afternoon, he had a loaf of garlic infused Italian bread cooling on the rack, a freshly made lasagna in the oven, and the ice cream machine humming. He looked at his watch. He had time for a tour of the house now, before he harassed Jon again. Richie couldn’t believe his friend hadn’t called him back yet.

Richie had just finished setting the table in the formal dining room when his phone rang.

“It’s about fucking time you called back,” Richie said without preamble. “What the hell have you been…never mind, I don’t want to know.” Richie was pacing, looking out the big picture window waiting for Jennifer to come home. She had called to say her train was delayed, and sounded like she was ready to kill someone. He chuckled. That ought to make tonight very interesting.

“Yeah, yeah,” Jon replied. “What the fuck, man, you’re gonna tell your daughter about this woman? What the hell for?”

Richie smiled. “Because I really like her,” he said. “She means more to me than some one-night or one-week fling. She’s different, Jon. Good different.”

Jon was shaking his head. “Bro, did you stop and think for a minute what telling Ava would mean?”

Richie sighed. “Of course I know what –” he started, but Jon cut him off.

“No, man, I don’t think you do.” He sighed. This was just like Richie, to go jumping into things with both feet. Made him a hell of a friend, but also left him wide open for disappointment and heartache. “Listen, if you tell that little girl about Jennifer now, when Heather is going through all this shit, she’s gonna form an attachment to her, whether you want her to or not. If she does that, and you guys decide it isn’t gonna work out, she’ll be hurt.”

“But I want this to work out,” Richie said.

“I’m sure you do,” Jon answered calmly. “Just like you wanted it to work out with Denise…And Maggie…And Debbie, Chrissy, Penelope and Carol. And, shit, what was that last one’s name? Oh yeah: Amber. You shielded Ava from those other women; you should shield her from this one, too.”

Richie was getting annoyed. “Jon, this is different. Jen is nothing like those other girls. For one thing, she flicks me in the forehead when I call her a girl.” He smiled a smile that Jon could hear in his voice. “She likes to remind me she is all woman.” He sighed, and Jon chuckled.

“So what?” Jon said. “Didn’t one of those other girls like to smack your ass all the time? They were just ports in the storm, man. Ways to ease the ache.”

“Jon, you aren’t hearing me, brother.” Richie was well past annoyed and on his way to being angry. He started pacing in front of the window. “I said she is different. She isn’t playing games with me, and she isn’t after me for my money or fame or whatever.” He pushed a hand through is hair, making it stick up. “She actually likes ME and gets me and dammit, I like her and get her, and I want my daughter to meet her.”

Jon was silent on the other end of the phone. “Whoa, whoa, WHOA. Back the fuck up. Meet her? MEET her? You just said you want Ava to know about her and now you have them meeting?” He shook his head. “Damn, she’s got your number, doesn’t she?” he asked.

Richie blew out a breath. “Yeah, man, she does. Hell, this morning, I almost used the ‘f’ word in a conversation with her, about us.”

“The ‘f’ word? Fuck man, that’s a regular part of our vocabulary.” Jon laughed.

“Not ‘fuck’, you asshole, though I must say, that word is appropriate for some of our communication…”

“I don’t wanna hear it, Rich,” Jon said.

“Alright, alright,” Richie said placatingly. “I meant ‘forever’. I almost said ‘forever’ to her.” He heard Jon’s scoffing laughter. “Don’t laugh man,” Richie said. “I think I meant it.”

“Are you sure it isn’t just because she’s a good lay?” Jon said cruelly.

“Fuck you,” Richie said, pissed off now. “You don’t know what she’s like, REALLY like. Do you know, she gets teary eyed when she sees little kids playing together? That she laughs out loud at those stupid Hallmark commercials? That she speaks fluent Italian and Spanish and knows everything about every person she does business with, down to their kids names and ages? That she actually gives as shit what her mailman’s name is? That when I open her pantry, everything is arranged nice and orderly and looks just like mine? That I’m so fucking comfortable in her house, in her life, that I almost forget that I don’t belong here?” Richie stopped, choking on emotion. “She’s too good for me, Jon. I don’t deserve her, but God help me, I want to. I want to deserve her.”

“That’s the first thing you’ve said that makes any sense whatsoever,” Jon said. “Alright, listen. Clearly you really care about her; otherwise you wouldn’t have gotten made at my picking at her. But you really want my advice?”

“I do man. I don’t want to do the wrong thing.”

“Then, if you feel that you have to tell Ava something, tell her you made a new lady friend that you really like, but you want to make sure she’s really nice before you tell her more, and leave it at that. Don’t tell her you have a girlfriend. Don’t have them meet yet for Christ’s sake. You don’t want to fuck up that little girl more than you already have recently.”

“Okay, yeah, you’re right. Of course you’re right.” Richie was quiet a moment. “What’s wrong, man?”

“What do you mean?”

“You don’t sound like yourself.”

Jon laughed without humor. “You’re nuts, Dr. Phil.”

"Am I?" Richie scoffed. "You're the one that introduced me to this woman, and yet you're now reading the script as ‘the cynic from hell to be named later’. So, c'mon tell Dr. Richie what's wrong." At Jon's silence, Richie would've thought that he'd hung up, if he didn't know him better. "Kidd, c'mon, ya know ya wanna talk about it."

"Shit man, I'm sorry. You're right. I was projecting all my fears onto you. Everything that I just told you...forget it," Jon replied, sounding angry, but Richie knew it wasn't him Jon was angry at. "That was all about me. And Tiff."

"Jon, do you realize how scared you sound?"

"Scared? Me?" Jon scoffed, "oh hell no."

"Yes you are," Richie told him.

"Fuck Rich, maybe I am. Tiff wants me to promise her that she's not just a fuck; that I'll still be around after this week. I wanna promise her that. I do. But," Jon stopped, and Richie filled in the blanks.

"You don't know if she's the one that can put up with your shit for the rest of your lives."

"Exactly," Jon confirmed. "Hell, I thought Dot was the one, and we both know how that turned out. I'm not so sure I trust my own judgment anymore. What makes you sure that Jennifer is the one?"

"Fuck Kidd, you're asking me for romantic advice?" Richie asked, astonished. "You're joking, right?"

"No, I'm not joking," Jon replied, his voice clipped.

"Jon, don't ask me. As you pointed out, I thought Denise was the one, and those others too. And I was wrong."

"Yeah, but you're saying that you really feel Jennifer's the one. How do you know?" Jon was almost desperate for the answer.

"I don't," Richie finally answered. "But, I'm willing to try to find out."

"You're willing to gamble? Risk your heart getting broken, if she's not?"

"Yeah, I guess I am," Richie answered.

They were both silent for a couple of minutes, while Jon processed what he'd just heard. After all he'd been through; Richie was still willing to trust his judgment. "How do ya do it, bro?" Jon asked.

"Do what?"

"Continue to trust yourself, when you've been wrong so many times," Jon answered.

"I trust my heart, man. You gotta trust your heart or you’ll never live."

Jon was quiet for so long, that Richie almost asked if he was still there. Was it that simple? Could he trust his heart?

"Thanks, Rich."

"For what? Listening? Don't thank me for doing my job, brother," Richie told him. "And Jon?"


"The answer is yes. You can trust your heart. Bye man." And with that Richie was gone.

How did he do that? How did he always know what Jon was thinking? It was like he could read his mind.

Jon spent the rest of the night contemplating what Richie had said, even long after Tiffany got home from work.

~ Thanks, T, for writing this one with me ~

(c) 2008 by TheGoddessHathor

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