“I can finish my shift, sis, don’t worry about it,” Jax grumbled rubbing his temples and groaning when the bell over the shops door jangled.
“Fine but if you’ve still got that headache tomorrow, stay home and rest, okay.”
“Yeah, yeah, I’ll be fine, quit your worrying.”
“Never, I’m older for a reason,” she laughed as she went to tend to their customer.
A half hour later the young man left with both eyebrows pierced, and Jax had a ten dollar tip in his pocket. From behind him, he heard his sister snickering.
“What?” He asked as he turned around and headed for the coffee pot. He poured a steaming cup and gulped at it, desperate for the caffeine to kill the pain.
“He was eyeing you like you were a t-bone,” she remarked.
“Yeah, no shit,”
“Shocked he didn’t hand you a phone number along with that tip.
Jax reached into his pocket and pulled out the ten, unfolding it to see a slip of white paper fall out and flutter to the floor. He wobbled a little as he bent to pick it up and squinted as he read it.
“Apparently he did,” Jax muttered, tossing the number away and pocketing the ten.
“Wow, not gonna call it? I think I’m really worried now.Aare you sure it’s just a headache?”
Jax sighed and dropped into a chair to finish his coffee. “Yeah, a headache that you’re making worse. I just wasn’t interested, okay.”
“Does it have anything to do with why you weren’t answering your phone all day on Thursday?”
“Was my day off, saw no reason to answer it.”
“Or maybe you were too busy wrapped up in the sheets with a hot girl or an even hotter guy, or both, it was both, wasn’t it?”
Jax groaned and ran his free hand through his hair. “No it wasn’t both, it’s been months since I’ve had both at the same time and what the fuck was I thinking telling you about it?”
“Allowing me to live vicariously through you, that’s what. I’m widowed, not dead, got to have some thrills in my life.”
“How about you get your own, then?”
“I’m not ready for that yet,” she replied and Jax wanted to kick himself, knowing how insensitive he’d sounded.
“Sorry sis,” he muttered.
“Its fine, you don’t want to share, don’t share.”
“I’m just not sure what to make of it yet,” Jax admitted, hoping the caffeine kicked in soon and took some of the pain away.
“So there is something going on?”
Jax chuckled. “You never quit, do you?”
“I guess not, it’s too engrained, I can’t help it, there’s always something going on with you.”
“Well, in this case, nothin’ is goin’ on, but I think I want there to be.”
She clapped her hands and Jax flinched and lay his head on the counter beside him. “Oh shit, Jax, I’m sorry.”
“I think I’m gonna puke,” Jax groaned, keeping his eyes squeezed tightly shut.
She lay her hand on his back and gently began rubbing circles.
“Breathe slow and relax. You need to go home and at this point, I don’t think you can drive yourself. Let me call Callum and Max and see if one of them can come get you.”
Jax exhaled a ragged breath, hating the throbbing pressure that was making him wish for death.
“Yeah, yeah, okay,” he managed.
“Where’s your phone?”
“Jacket pocket, turned off.”
“Okay. Just stay still and try not to puke,” she said, even as she carefully placed the metal garbage can beside him. “And if you do, please, please, please get it in that.”
Jax didn’t even bother with a response, he just breathed and clung to the counter, his sister’s voice dim as she called his friends.
“Okay, Jax?” she asked. She was closer now, kneeling beside him. “Hey, hun, how are you doing?”
“Workin’ on not pukin’”
“Good, ‘cause I’ve got bad news. Max was at home, but Callum was stuck at work and he has the car.”
Jax moaned pitifully. “Shit.”
“Is there anyone else I can call?”
Jax was silent, at this point he’d have tried crawling the seventeen blocks, but figured he’d end up curled in a doorway after less than two.
“Danny,” he muttered, knowing he sounded pathetic. He really did not want the guy who’d started creeping into his dreams to see him this way, but at the moment, he wasn’t even sure if he could stand.
“Okay, I’m gonna dim the lights back here a little first,” she said and moved away.
The voice in his head that screamed ‘suck it up’ and ‘tell her to forget it’ was drowned out by the pounding of the migraine. The shop bells jingled and when he tried to stand to go help, he ended up just slithering onto the floor and pressing his head against the cool metal of the filing cabinet.
He heard her gasp entirely too loud when she came back in and saw him there. “Shit, Jax, maybe you need to go to the hospital.”
“No,” he groaned.
“Okay, but, I’ve never seen you have one this bad.”
“Please say Danny is coming.”
“He’s on his way. I’ll bring your bike in here when after I close tonight, it’ll be just fine.”
“Thank me by getting some rest and feeling better,” she said. “I’ve got to go, guy just walked in looking to get a snake tattoo to cover up his ex-girlfriend’s name.”
“Joy,” Jax groaned, grimacing.
“I’ll send Danny back as soon as he gets here. At least now I finally get to meet him,” she remarked before hurrying out of the room.
Jax just moaned miserably, hoping Danny would hurry the hell up.