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Another Way, Another Life

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101 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Sat 17 May 2014, 11:43 pm

Dear Liam                                                        3rd June 1963


How are you? I am very adequate. The voyage was very nice. Daddy picked me up from Southampton; we stayed for a few days in our house in Brighton before we drove up to Oxford to meet Mother. Daddy ensured me that Mother has been very well the past weeks. She seemed a lot better; well she was the first day when daddy was home unfortunately he has to teach a summer class. And since the two days he left in the morning Mother is very nervous again. Just this morning I angered her by not wearing the right dress, she decided for me to wear a certain dress at the DA luncheon, DA stands for Daughters of Aristocracy. She wanted me to wear the Oxford-blue silk dress and I forgot and wore my green cotton dress. She was so angry that -I deserved box round the ears- I was not allowed to attend the luncheon.
She also complained that my English is horrible and she is right my pronunciation got really bad and I say things like ‘smashing’.
It is very different to be in Waterfall Downs again. Mother mentioned that she has arranged a suitable husband for me, since I caused such a scandal with Victor in America. So the only one that is suitable for me -now that everyone believes Victor deflowered me- is the young Lord Alfred Jackson. The Jackson’s are the second most important family after the royal family. I met Alfred a few times and well let’s say even though he is the only Jackson heir suitable brides are rare he has not the best reputation. But mother thinks his and my reputation well cancel each other out. I will meet him tomorrow when we go to dinner to the Jackson’s. You and I know Mother can’t make decisions regarding me but let’s face it, daddy cannot publicly say she has no say over me and who knows maybe Alfred is now as harsh everyone says I met him once before and I remember he is really smart. And daddy says I will not marry before I am sixteen so I can finish school.
Enough about me how are you? What are you doing all day? Is your mum well? I really miss you. I hope to hear from you soon.


Cordially your Jo


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102 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Sun 18 May 2014, 12:20 am

Jo,                                                      8th June 1963


I can’t believe your father plays along and makes you be engaged to anyone you barely know, and believes you got deflowered -what a stupid word for losing your virginity-. I still think all rich people are crazy except you. I’m quite busy I try to build an engine for mum’s car that it runs on sunlight so far I’m failing [for the next page or two Liam describes in every little detail this engine he is building, including calculations and drawings].
Mum is fine she had a few days off and we went to Michigan Lake. I had to think of you since we were camping. I wonder how you would have dealt with sleeping in a tent and sleep on the floor. It was pretty fun. I got something for you in Michigan.
Mum sent a package of pictures of me to Graham I still don’t want anything to do with that prick.
Guess what another prick was in the newspapers, Victor trashed a restaurant and it was a huge scandal, apparently the Grey’s have no money; they lost it in gambling, whores, booze, and other stupid things. I’ve collected the articles for you.
And I got you a present in Michigan it is waiting for you here at home.

How are you getting on with your maths summer homework? No cheating and asking your maid to do it for you. You need to do it yourself; I can check it when you come back end of July.
Mum says Hi, she is teasing me that you are the first and only one I am ever writing a letter, not even my grandparents receive more than a few postcards during the year.
I hope your mother calms down again, it is not as unpleasant as she makes it to have you around.
A few days ago I managed to make mum pancakes for breakfast. They were bay far not as good as yours but better than mum’s/
Not far from our house opened a British pub, mum said we can once in a while get food from there on weekends it might be more like your food at home.
Okay after writing this really long letter I have to say it, I think I should tell your Mother that you do now want to be engaged yet. You are not even 13 yet and far from being ready to get married. I mean come on you just got your period, you are still pretty much a child.
Shit, I got to go mum is calling me again. She is making me mow the lawn, apparently the neighbours complained about our lawn. Who would do that? I think it is none of their business.
Talk to you soon.



Liam


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103 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Sun 18 May 2014, 9:39 pm

Dear Liam.                                    16th June 1963
[A lot of tear stains cover the letter and make it difficult to read.]
This is the hardest letter to write. Nothing I could tell you seems important enough to tell you. I am at Portsmouth port waiting for the ferry.
Last week after the dinner at White Heaven Manor, the house the Jackson’s live in, something unspeakable happened. I do not know how to write this, I am scared when I write it down there is no going back and it is real. Lady Elizabeth Williams, my Mother, passed away.
I do not really know what to say I have to leave Waterfall Downs, I cannot stand staying at this manor right now. I do not know if Daddy is alright, he is working every day since it happened, I have only seen him once the day of Mother’s funeral. He is very upset about Mother’s passing, I think he tries to write a new book but as I said I barely saw him neither talked to him. I am on the way to Germany to stay with my cousin Lorelai. I need some distance and asked Daddy if I could come back to America but he does not want me to spend the summer in America as well.
I added my address on a separate note for you.
I have to go now if I want to send this letter before the ferry leaves. I hope I hear soon from you, I could really use some  of your special charm.
Love

          Jo 


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104 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Mon 19 May 2014, 6:22 pm

Jo,                                                      16th June 1963
Mum got a research project in Australia. We are at the airport right now. It is amazing all our expenses will be covered in Australia. We will be gone all summer, and are coming back just before you come back. You can reach me via the new address I added. Luckily I’m not scared of flying or we would never arrive in Australia on time. Sorry little joke.
Talk to you soon from Down Under.
 

          Liam  


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105 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Fri 30 May 2014, 11:22 pm

It was the first week of August, Jo went back to Concord but she didn’t know why she came back to America but the week before she left was hell. Her father was working none-stop and people looked at her so weirdly because her mother had taken her own life. Jo was very confused what to think, her own mother that she has taken the decision from the Lord to end her own life. Jo wasn’t sure if she wanted to go back to Concord Academy but she didn’t want to be in England.
It was registration day and Jo signed up for a lot of classes maybe even more than she had to but she wanted to be busy, she didn’t want to have time to think.

“Jo!” Liam shouted across the yard, but Jo did not seem to have heard her or she deliberately ignored him? When she never wrote him after her first letter he thought her mother just got her will and stopped her from writing, he knew her dad liked him but her mother was a different story. Or being back in posh England had turned her into a snob -not that she ever was one, she was very down to earth-?
They had two days of registration and orientation it was Friday lunch time when Liam found Jo sitting alone on their table outside in the yard.

“Hey Stranger. How was your summer?” Liam grinned and sat down at the table, she had a full plate but just pushed her food around.
For a while Jo said nothing and Liam started his lunch.

“Are you serious? You sit down here as if nothing had happened? You didn’t write to me anymore and ask me how my summer was when you know that my mother killed herself? You stupid, stupid boy!” Jo got up, took her tray to throw it roughly into the bin and march off. Liam got angry that she had called him stupid and that he hadn’t written any letter when it was the opposite even though Jo had not written to him he had wrote her every second day a letter about his adventures while he got nothing from her but then suddenly it hit him… when you know that my mother killed herself.

“What? Shit!” Liam thought about finding Jo to talk to her but then he realised that he needed more. He not just had to talk to Jo because Jo did not act at all like Jo the lovely girl he knew. Liam did all his registration and let’s face it he does not need an orientation he knows the school. He went to Haines House and talk to Jo’s house mother.

“… yes her mother passed away during the summer holidays.” The house mother answered Liam’s question.

“I see. Um… can Jo come to me house for the weekend? I mean she was allowed to come every weekend last year, I can call me mum.” Liam argued.

At first the house mother was not really keen but then she thought it might be a good thing for Josephine to visit her best friend. “Alright she may go if she agrees though I want you mother to pick you two up. I don’t want her to walk through town.”

Liam nodded and called his mum at work. “Mum, we have a problem, a big one. Jo’s mother killed herself and she is really angry. She does not want to talk to me and well said she sent me a letter but we just came back yesterday morning at like five. Can you pick us up? The nasty house mother does not want Jo to walk.” Liam said on the phone in Irish to his mum. “I think she is in a really bad place, even worse than the one she was in after the incident in the house.”

“Oh shit. Yes of course. What time do you want me to be there?” Catherine was very worried, it worried her that Jo had not written to Liam all summer but now to hear that Jo’s mother had passed away that was a whole different level of worry.

“I think she will be another hour or so busy and then come back to the house and I think she should talk to you because all she did with me was yell at me and call me a stupid boy.” Liam was still answering in Irish, he didn’t like that the house mother tried to overhear his conversation with his mother.

“Alright, I will be there around two. Don’t hang out at Haines House until then go to the library or go to the pool, don’t pressure her to talk to you.”

“Okay I go to the pool, I could use some rounds. See you later.” Liam hung up and went to the school pool Liam learnt surfer during summer and he loved it he was really good in swimming and the surfing made him stronger.

“Hello Miss O’Doherty. It is good to see you again. Josephine is upstairs, she is well as expected. As I understand it in the letter from her father that she had spend the summer not at home but at her uncle’s stud farm in Germany. I have not talked to Lord Williams on the phone I spoke to someone in the house and I am told that he will talk to anyone except through letters. I think she should not be in Haines House this weekend everyone is very happy to be back at school and I think Josephine will not be happy here this weekend.”

“I understand. May I go talk to Josephine?”

“Sure she is upstairs in room 24.”

Catherine nodded and went upstairs. She didn’t need long to find Jo’s room. Jo had unpack all her things and was sitting on her bed, she used to read a lot but now she just sat there and starred at the wall.

“Jo, honey. It is so good to see you again.” Catherine whispered from the door, she was shocked to see Jo this way. Jo was always slim but she must have lost at least ten pounds if not more. This beautiful girl was broken. In the end her mother had done it and broke her spirit. Catherine had to fight the urge to storm to Jo and hug her tightly!

Jo was quiet and just continued staring at the wall.

“Jo? Honey, did you hear me?” Catherine whispered a second time.

Jo nodded slowly. “I did. You have forgotten me.”

“Oh honey we never did! We thought of you a lot, and both Liam and I wrote you letters but I think because you were in Germany you missed the letters. I’m sure that the letters are in Waterfall Downs.” Catherine talked to him calmly but she was still at the door. “Honey listen to me, I would suggest you come with me and Liam home. I think it would be good for you, we have not forgotten you.”

“Alright. I… I don’t know where my things are.” Jo whispered.

“That is okay. I can help you pack some things if you want to and if not that is okay too, you have still things at home.” Catherine whispered. She was still scared to touch Jo.
Jo was quiet for a while, lost in her thoughts.

“I need nothing just this box.” Jo murmured. “Catherine?”

There it was again the urge to pull this little girl into a tight embrace. “Yes honey?”

“Does Liam hate me?”

“Oh dear God no!”

“Do you hate me?”

“No, Honey I love you.”

Jo nodded, she didn’t say anything but got up. She couldn’t life the box she had pointed so Catherine quickly picked it up. “It’s okay I take.” Catherine walked just a step behind Jo, she was so scared that she could fall or faint.
Liam was waiting at the car and he wanted to say something but Catherine was faster in a very quick Irish she said. “Just say ‘Hello’, no comments, no typically Liam, just ‘Hello’.”

Liam looked at his mother but nodded, she didn’t need to tell him that Jo looked awful. “Hello Jo.”

Jo didn’t give Liam the cold shoulder she was lost in her thoughts and it weren’t pretty ones. The ride home was weird, the evening was weird Liam and Catherine tried to engage with Jo but she was just staring blankly. It was barely nine o’clock when Catherine suggested that Jo and Liam would go to bed. Liam got upstairs first and got changed, he went in the bathroom while Catherine went with Jo. Catherine had the feeling that Jo would need helping to change into her pyjamas and she was right. Jo was standing there lost in hers and Liam’s room not knowing what to do.

“All your clothes are washed and folded. There are still some lighter things to wear but I also got your autumn clothes out. I’ve got you a new pyjama it is nice one, see. Come here let me help you.” Catherine was speaking very softly not like Jo was terminally ill but still gentle. Jo walked closer to Catherine and let her take off her day clothes. She went in the bathroom and brushed her teeth but she was just on autopilot. Catherine tucked her into bed. “If you need anything you can wake me or Liam. Everything is okay!”

Jo nodded and closed her eyes, she knew she would not sleep but Catherine did not have to know that.
Catherine worried a lot, and she didn’t know how to help Jo. But she saw that Jo needed help, real help.


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106 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Tue 17 Jun 2014, 12:29 am

It was the middle of the night barely past one o’clock when Liam got suddenly woke up by Jo’s screams. Liam took just a second to wake up and then hurried to Jo’s bed.
 
“It’s alright Jo. We are all safe and sound and you are alright.” Liam tried to calm her down, tried to pull her into a hug but Jo was fighting him.
 
“You didn’t write to me! You hate me! You think I am a snob!” Jo yelled and pushed Liam away as hard as she could.
Catherine was outside the door and wondered if she should intervene.
 
“I did write and I never thought of you as a snob or could hate you! You are my best friend!” Liam looked at her as he pulled out the letter she had sent him, the last one that had reached him or well should have reached him. “I found this at the very bottom of our letter piles.”
 
Jo didn’t answer, she just started starring again? She remembered herself sitting at the harbour waiting for her ferry.
 
“Let me quickly read it and then I know what you wrote. I sent you tons of letters and postcards from Australia. I’m sure someone in England has all of it unless your mother had thrown it all away.” Liam opened the envelope and saw her neatly handwriting when suddenly it hit him, her handwriting looked weird.
 
“Did this letter get wet?” Liam looked at the envelope which looked fine but on the letter were water stains. “Holy Saint Patrick. Your mother? She…? You cried. Oh my Yvaine!” This time Jo didn’t fight him and let him pull her into his arms. “Do you want to talk?” Liam didn’t know what to say but he had often enough seen his mum asking Jo if she wants to talk about whatever is on her mind.
Liam felt Jo shiver and he noticed that Jo was already wearing her warm pyjama. He brushed some of her bushy hair out of her face and pulled her soft wool blanket over her shoulder and then leaned back to sit more comfortable. The two children were snuggled into Jo’s bed and for a while Jo didn’t say anything she just held on tightly to Liam’s shirt, so tight as if she was scared to fall and maybe she would.
 

“She was ill and she took it very hard how much I had changed. She said I talk like a Yank, and I behave like one too. She was so upset with me, she didn’t liked that the young Lord Alfred he is fifteen had actually a very nice conversation about the French revolution but Mother did not think of it as proper. The day after the dinner Daddy had to work and Mother and I were alone, but she told me at breakfast that she is not feeling well and wants to be alone, I should see at eleven. It was a nice day so I took my book and went outside. I was reading Moby Dick and even though it is not a complicated book and quite good written I am not familiar with whale fishing. I love track of time when I suddenly remembered that Mother awaited me. It was nearly half past twelve when I went in her parlour and there she was on her couch, her head resting on her chest. I thought she had fallen asleep but then I saw the pill bottles on the table and the bottle of cognac. And that is when I saw it the stain on her chest, her pasty white skin and her queer look in her eyes. She was dead and I knew it. I don’t remember much more, I started screaming but what happened than I don’t know. I know we had the funeral but I do not know who attended.  The next thing I remember clear is the night before I wrote this letter I had a huge argument with father. I said I want to go back to America, I could not stay in the house. He did not want me to go back. It was America that killed Mother and he did not want me to go back to the place that killed his beloved Lilibet. In the end it was Anne my governess that suggested to spend the summer in Germany. Father agreed and I left the day after. Liam I killed my Mother, I did not attend to her when she ask me to. When I would have gone to her rooms at eleven and not half past twelve she would still be alive. I killed my mother.” Jo started heavily sobbing again and held on even tighter to Liam’s shirt. “I killed my Father love of his life!”


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107 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Sat 28 Jun 2014, 9:14 pm

Liam had no idea what he was doing he just held her tightly and brushed his hand through her hair. He had no idea how long he was holding her but at some point Jo went very quiet. Very gentle he brushed her bushy hair out of her face and saw that she was asleep but even though she was sleep she was holding on to his pyjama shirt with a very firm grip.
 
“Everything is alright. No one will harm you here. Just sleep and you will feel better. You are at home now.” Liam pulled her duvet over her shoulder and settled into her pillows and held her, he would not let her go.
 
“Liam Seamus O’Doherty what do you think you are doing?” Catherine whispered in Irish as loud as she could without waking the sleeping Jo.
Liam blinked and wanted to sit up but Jo was still lying on him and held him down. “Oh.” A sheepish grinned appeared on his face.
 
“Get up!”
 
Liam untangled himself from Jo who was luckily a very deep sleeper and followed his mother. “I can explain.”
 
“What did you do to her?” Catherine did not want to jump to conclusions but during this summer her teenage son turned into a fully aware sexual being and she was sure so far he was still well only with himself and certain magazines but now that Jo was back and vulnerable enough Catherine realised that it maybe was time to separate the two.
 
“I did nothing to her… or with her if that is what you think. Lady Williams passed away, she… took her own live.” Liam looked uncomfortable at his mother. “She took pills. Apparently she said to Jo to meet in an hour and Jo lost track of time but when she came in her mother was… cold.”
 
“Oh Liam, please tell me you weren’t that direct with Jo?” Catherine looked horrified at her son.
 
“No, no I think I was nice.” Liam looked uncomfortable at his mother. “Why did she do it?”
 
“I don’t know Liam. I don’t know. Did Jo say anything about school?” Catherine pulled Liam into a tight hug and didn’t feel like letting go of him.
 
“I’m not sure. She hasn’t been in Oxford since it happened. Jo spend the summer with her cousin in Germany and then she just came here.” Liam whispered.
 
“Don’t pressure he Liam. I will call her housemother and see what she says about this but I hope Jo stays here. It will be good for her.” Catherine let go of Liam.
 
“Okay. I should go back. She was so scared last night.” Liam looked sad at his mom.
 
“We will make sure she feels safe here but you need to let her grieve in her own time and way. Grieve is not something you can do for someone else.” Catherine looked concerned at Liam he was not always the most careful one with words.
 
“I know.” Liam kissed his mother on her cheek and ran back into his room. Jo was just waking up and Liam wasn’t surprised that she was heavily sobbing. He hurried back and picked her up from the floor.
 
“Hey what you doing down here?” Liam whispered while he wrapped her blanket and his arms around her.
 
“I don’t know.” Jo sobbed through her tear. Liam held her a little bit tighter.
 
“It will be all fine, my mum and I will make sure of that. Everything will be okay.” Liam kissed Jo on top of her head. “Everything will be alright.”
 
Jo nodded into his chest. She didn’t know how but she knew Liam would not let anyone hurt her. “Liam, I will need some help in school, I’m not good concentrating at the moment.”
 
“Sure thing. I’m your tutor for this year.” Liam whispered.


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108 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Thu 03 Jul 2014, 6:13 pm

It was three weeks since Jo broke down for the very first time since her mother had passed away, she was visiting the school counsellor twice a week and once a week she talks to the minister of the church she is going to, and it helped her. And Jo talked often with Catherine and even Liam he didn’t know why but it felt good to just listen to her. Jo often ended up in Liam’s bed when she was at the weekend at his’. And she was right she did need help with her classes. It was Friday late afternoon when Jo and Liam were sitting at the table in the kitchen to do their homework. Jo was meant to read a book for one of her English classes but…
 
“Jo, stop daydreaming and continue reading.” Liam admonished her for the fourth time that day.
 
“I’m sorry.” Jo looked down at her book again. “I just think Utopia is not a very fascinating book.”
 
“But you have to write the essay about it and you need to have read the book recently to do so. So read.” Liam said grinning.
 
“Liam you are very bossy tonight! Jo has time to read the book have you not sweetheart?” Catherine put her hand on Jo’s shoulder and looked on her notes on the book. But it weren’t notes on the book, they looked more like this:
Why? Why? Why? WHY did she do it?
Catherine sighed quietly.
 
“Actually she has not. The essay is due on Monday and…” Liam stopped when he saw his mother shake her head.
 
“I see. Let’s see if I can help. What is the topic of the essay?” Catherine sat down and took Jo’s notepad.
 
“Imprisonment in Paradise.” Jo whispered and Catherine understood why Jo had such a hard time, she had been living exactly that way.
 
“Well, you read the book before right?” Catherine wrote the title in the middle of the page. “So let’s collect thoughts. What does paradise mean to you Jo and what does it mean in the book?”
 
“Paradise means you have everything you need and have no worries.” Liam offered.
 
“No! A paradise means you live in a cage.” Jo whispered not looking at anyone.
 
“Well yeah, if you leave paradise you have not everything perfect anymore but why would you leave paradise in the first place.” Liam argued.
 
“But it is a golden cage.”
 
“Why would you want to leave?” Liam looked puzzled at Jo.
 
“To be free!” Jo suddenly yelled angry. “Paradise sucks! You have everything what you want but that doesn’t make you happy. Look at you and your mum, you are… you don’t have a lot of money but you are happy! Yes there are things you want and maybe even need but don’t have but this is paradise you value little things so much more than anyone of those stinking rich people I grew up with. A true paradise means every person is free! Free in the exact meaning of the word; Able to act or be done as one wishes; not under the control of another. Paradise is a word, a moment but can never be achieved not everywhere.”
 
“I think you have found your essay.” Catherine smiled and kissed her on top of the head. “I’m ordering dinner any wishes?”
 
Jo shook her head already busily writing her essay. Liam looked at her. She was so thin and so pale and even he had noticed it. She was not eating and it worried him.
It was not a surprise that Jo had to be several times to put away her essay things and help Liam set the table, and it was even less of a surprise that she barely touched her burger and only ate a few fries. She didn’t pay attention to Liam or Catherine even when they tried to involve her into their conversations she kept just starring at her plate. Liam nodded towards Jo and Catherine understood.
 
“Jo, Sweetheart is something wrong with the food?”
 
“No. I’m just not hungry. May I be excused?” Jo looked sad at Catherine. Catherine fought with herself, she wanted to let her go upstairs but she had to eat. She was so skinny.
 
“Jo I would like you to eat a little more. If you want you can even just eat dessert. I know you are not hungry and I understand it, but I want you to eat something.” Catherine spoke calmly but determined.
 
“But…” Jo started.
 
“No but Jo. I want you to eat something. I don’t care what it is but you are not leaving this table before you ate something!” Catherine interrupted her very strict. Jo looked surprised at Catherine, she had never spoken to her like this and Catherine never had to.  
Liam was just as surprised and even more when he and his mum had finished dinner and Jo was still sitting at the table refusing to eat. And Jo was slowly getting really angry. Why was she punished? It wasn’t wrong not to eat if you are not hungry. This isn’t fair. It wasn’t fair that Catherine and Liam went into the living room and watched TV while she was still sitting here and had to eat this bloody foot. It was nearly half an hour that Liam and Catherine were in the living room when they heard a loud shattering in the kitchen. They hurried back and found Jo standing in the kitchen and for a brief moment they saw pure anger on her face until it vanished and she started crying again.
 
“I will not eat!” She yelled between her tears and ran upstairs and slammed her bedroom door.
 
“What was that?” Liam looked confused.
 
“That my dear son was a teenage girl.” Catherine sighed.
 
“But she is not a teenager yet.” Liam argued.
 
“No she is not but she sure reached puberty. Go watch TV, I’ll talk to Jo.” Catherine got some bread and spray-cheese and went upstairs. Jo was lying on her bed, her face buried in her pillow but when Catherine came in and sat down next to her.
 
“I’m sorry Catherine. I didn’t mean to yell at you or brake the plate.”
 
“I know Sweetie.”
 
Jo took the bread and the spray-cheese. “Mother would hate to see me eat this.”
 
“No she wouldn’t. Jo I know you are seeing counsellor but I’m not sure anyone mentions the fact that you are not eating and you lost a lot of weight. Jo I need you to stop this, if you have to you need to write down what you eat and every weekend I will talk with you about it and see if it is a proper amount but you have to eat.” Catherine helped Jo to spray the cheese on the slice of bread and handed it to her.
 
“I know but I am just not hungry.” Jo whispered, she took the bread and forced herself to eat it.
 
“Here take this book. I want you to write down every day what you eat. I’ve got you a list of things you could eat and also how much you should eat.” Catherine gave Jo a small book. “I do that because I love you. You know that right?”
 

“I know.” Jo curled up in Catherine arms and ate her spray-cheese sandwich.


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109 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Fri 18 Jul 2014, 12:31 am

Jo wrote every day in her little book what she ate. She and Catherine had sat down and looked at the school menu and made a decision of what Jo would eat during that week. It was hard for her to eat every day and most time she didn’t want to eat but she ate at least a little bit. She was gaining a little bit weight but not much she was still very skinny, but Catherine was very glad to see that she was eating a low amount but she stopped looking like a skeleton.
Meanwhile Liam was having his own development.
 
“Liam I told you to put away your clean laundry I don’t wash it for you to leave lying all week on the washing machine. Oh Holy Saint Patrick!” Catherine groaned, she had walked in on Liam when he… he had an adult magazine and was spanking the monkey.
 
“MUM!” Liam yelled.
 
“What? If you would have put your laundry away we would not be in this situation. Erm Munchkin, do we need to talk?” Catherine asked through the door.
 
 “NO! Go away.” Liam said sounding slightly out of breath.
 
“I see, yes of course. You are busy. We talk later.” Catherine went downstairs and put on the TV quite loudly.
But they did not talk, but Catherine found more and more often in Liam’s sheets, in the shower and the worst places were the couch and the kitchen.
 
“Liam? Are you asleep?” Jo was still often searching refuge in his bed.
 
“Erm. Yes but try to sleep in your bed.” Liam sounded a little odd and muffled.
 
“But I can’t. What are you doing?” Jo sat up and tried to see Liam in his bed but she couldn’t he seemed to be fully under his duvet.
 
“Nothing, go to sleep.” Liam moaned subdued and then was quiet.
 
“Liam?” Jo couldn’t explain why but she was suddenly scared. “Never mind.” She got up and left the room. Liam reappeared from under his duvet and leaned back, he was out of breath but he knew that he done a mistake. He hurt Jo, and he had promised her never to hurt her. He pulled up his boxers stuffed the extra sheet he had under his bed and followed her downstairs he passed the bathroom and quickly washed his hands.
 
“Hey! Hey, stop you are choking.” Liam pulled her hand away from her mouth she was trying to muffle her sobs.
 
“But you hate me.” Jo cried trying not to need his closeness.
 
“No I don’t and you know that. Okay listen but well you remember when mum talked to you about sex?” Liam whispered, he wanted to wrap his arms around her but at the same time knowing what he was talking about he preferred staying a little bit away from her and had a pillow on his lap.
 
“Yes?” Jo looked a little worried at him.
 
“Well don’t freak out but okay here we go I am masturbating.” Liam whispered.
 
“What? Oh dear Lord. Is it… me?” Jo looked with big eyes at him.
 
“No. no!” Liam lied or was he? “Sorry, I try not to do it when you are here. It’s just I have urges.”
 
“I understand Kate said boys have more urges. Can we still be friends?” Jo was so unsure about this.
 
“Of course. We are the best friends. So what scared you so much that you couldn’t sleep?” Now that his pants have calmed down he dared to pull her in his arm and covered them with the blanket.
 
“The same dream I always have. Mother climbing out her grave telling me I have to marry Victor and that it is his duty to deflower me right away.” Jo whispered and leaned against him. “I don’t want that and I am so sorry.”
 
“There is no need to be sorry. I know your mother thought he was the right for you but that does not give him the right to deflower you. That still sounds silly.” Liam whispered, he would not tell anyone but he actually hoped that Jo had nightmares when she was home for the weekend. It was the best part of the weekend to hold her and made sure that she was safe.
 
“Sorry, it sounds so… it hurts me to talk about this.” Jo whispered and Liam felt her trembling.
 
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to judge you. It’s okay I can think of it as silly but I will accept it.” Liam pulled her closer. “No one is going to hurt you, I will not let anyone hurt you or deflower you unless you want it.”
 
Jo nodded, her eyes were growing heavy and she slowly drifted into sleep.
 
How can she smell so good? How can she be so… beautiful? And then Liam noticed it for the first time, the little curve just above her heart. Is that… ? Oh shit here we go again.
 
Very carefully did he push Jo off his shoulder and managed to get off the couch. He had promised not to do it with her close by so he went in the bathroom did his deed there and went back to the couch. Jo was peaceful asleep. Liam sighed.

“Oh Yvaine, what shall I do with you? I want to help you so badly. I really do I just don’t know how.” Liam whispered. He felt so helpless, very slowly Jo was getting better but at the same time he needed her by his side. He didn’t understand but the time apart from her was always difficult especially since he had skipped a class and was now above her but it was even more than that. It was giving him a horrible stomach ache to be away from her. Liam sighed and snuggled back onto the couch with her. He had to control his pants when he was around her, he did not want to scare her, ever.

Keep it together little lad no standing up when Jo is here. Keep it down lad.


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110 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Sun 10 Aug 2014, 12:01 am

Two weeks later Liam noticed a difference in Jo. She was so… odd.
 
“Jo darling are you alright?” Catherine asked Jo while they watched TV.
 
“Oh yes I am very well. May I use the telephone?”
 
“Of course.” Catherine looked surprised at the little girl.
 
Jo was on the phone for a while and then came back smiling in a very cute way and then it hit Catherine. She knew what was going on, but she sure would not mention it until Jo did. Catherine knew that Liam would not like to hear this news.
 
On Tuesday at lunch Liam was waiting for Jo in their usual corner and she came but…
 
“Hello Liam. It is so good to see you, thanks for saving me a seat. Do you mind if Steven sits with us? He is… erm my boyfriend.” Jo said holding the boys hand. He was a freshman so not that much older than Jo. Tall, blue eyes and brown hair to be honest he looked a little like Liam just taller and well older.
 
“Hi Liam, I heard a lot about you.” Steven held out his hand but Liam didn’t move.
 
“Steven saw me two weeks ago try out hockey and we got talking.” Jo smiled and ate her salad, she had still problems eating but it was getting better. Liam noted every bite she took.
 
“Hey Josephine, I have to go to the biology room I have a project. I see you later?” Steven got up and actually kissed Jo on her cheek. Liam just stared at the two, as if they were an avalanche.
 
“Yes see you later.” Jo whispered. “Steven is a wonderful boy. He is very funny. He can do this funny voices, and he is helping me with my maths he is really smart. His parents have passed away and he is living with his grandparents. So what do you think about him? Steven says with a little practice I will be quite good in field hockey. Do you like Steven? He is nice isn’t he?”
 
Liam stared at her for several minutes until he finally said. “You want to play field hockey?”
 
“Erm, yes but Liam did you hear what I said?” Jo looked unsure at him.
 
“I have to go.” Liam ran off and didn’t even wait for Jo to say anything further.
 

“Yeah thanks talking to me Liam. Boys! They are so weird.”


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111 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Mon 11 Aug 2014, 12:56 am

Jo went to her class while Liam went a different way.
 
“What the fuck do you think you are doing?” Liam stormed into small science room all students were allowed to use for research on their own.
 
“Excuse me?” Steven looked up from the rat he was dissecting.
 
“With Jo what are you doing with her?” Liam was furious and he couldn’t even explain why, just the thought of this boy who was still a year older than him touching his Jo drove him crazy. “I kill you if you hurt her! If you touch her!”
 
Steven was calm. “Yeah Josephine said you will act all weird but I did not expect this. Look you had the last year to score now it is my turn and what I heard she is an easy girl to score. I heard a dude in New York got her first though.”
 
And that was the moment Liam’s vision went a little blurry, he pushed Steven off his chair and punched him as hard as he could in the face and it was oddly satisfying when he felt Steven’s nose break. “You stay the fuck away from her.”
 
Steven was lying on the floor blood running down his face, he was actually too shocked to even react or say anything. Liam just walked away and hurried to class.
 
The next few days Jo had hockey practice during lunch and Liam was always watching her, though she couldn’t see him. But he saw her and he saw Steven. Steven had told everyone the lie that he slipped and fell in the science room.
 
It was Friday and Jo walked home with Liam.
 
“And Steven said I look really good out on the field.”
 
“Yeah he likes seeing you in that skirt.” Liam mumbled.
 
“Liam are you alright?” Jo asked, she just too one of the bags from their dinner order at the diner.
 
“Yeah fine. Come on lets go I have a huge pile of homework.” Liam said grim and started walking so fast that Jo had to run to keep up with him. She knew something was up with her best friend but she didn’t understand what it was.
 
To Liam’s birthday Lord Colin had arranged that the little shed in the tiny garden got turned into a small laboratory for Liam so that he could do his experiments safely and that is where he went. He took a burger and some fries and locked himself in. Catherine looked through the window at the shed and wondered what was going on in her son’s mind. Why was he locking himself away? He lives for the weekends, before Jo because he couldn’t stand school now because it meant she was here. But he was so cold towards her.
 
“Jo, Sweetie did you and Liam have a fight?” Catherine saw that Jo had a salad and fries nut what made her happy was the large chocolate milkshake.
 
“No not that I know. But he is acting weird ever since I introduced him to Steven.”
 
“Who is Steven, Sweetie?” Catherine was actually worried that it was one of Jo’s imaginary friends.
 
Jo blushed and smiled shy. “Steven is my boyfriend. Here that is him.” Jo showed Catherine a small picture Steven had given her yesterday so she would not forget him during the weekend.
 
“Your boyfriend?” Catherine looked surprised but managed to keep it out of her voice.
 
“Yes Steven is…” Jo went on for a while about everything Steven did, said, thinks and believes.
 
“I think it is time for some homework, and I will go and see what Liam is up to.” Catherine kissed Jo on top of her head and went outside. “Liam what is going on?”
 
“Mum I am busy.” Liam didn’t even pretend he was busy.
 
“Liam are you jealous that Jo has a boyfriend?” Catherine knew there was no way of talking around the point with Liam, not when it came to this.
 
“No I am not.” Liam said gloom.
 
“Liam it is alright that Jo has other friends and even a boyfriend.”
 
“This boyfriend of hers is not a good one. All he wants is to… he wants her.” Liam looked angry at his mother. “Somehow people know about what nearly happened in New York though they think that Victor that he really… you know.”
 
“Liam are you saying that this Steven is trying to sleep with Jo?”
 
“That is not true.” Jo was standing in the door.
 
“He told me so. He said ‘I had the last year to score now it is his turn and what he heard you are an easy girl to score. He heard a dude in New York got you first though.’ All he wants is to get into your knickers Jo! He doesn’t deserve you!” Liam screamed the last words.
 
“No, no he… he tells me I look good, when…” Jo went pale when she suddenly realised that Steven told her only that she looked good when she was in her PE clothes or her hockey uniform. “Oh…” Jo started breathing rapidly and went pale. This was not good. “He kissed me.”
 
“I gonna kill him!” Liam yelled, the chair went flying into the wall when Liam jumped up. Catherine looked surprised at her son. He had never ever reacted like that, he hated to see her with a man but he never reacted so full of anger.
 
Jo shook her head and ran back into the house and as fast as Liam’s anger had risen as fast did it go. Liam didn’t see emotions in other people but he saw every little change in Jo and right now his Jo was terrified. “Liam I think anger is not the right way to go.”
 
“But you heard what he told me, you heard what Jo said. He kissed her next all he will hurt her.” Liam started to get angry again.
 
Catherine sighed. “Liam, think of Jo and not Steven. Hold on Jo said Steven fell and broke his nose. That was you.”
 
Liam looked away. “I had to. You would have done the same. If you had heard him brag how he basically already got her naked.” Liam sighed. “I go and talk to Jo, I promise I will not scare her. I just want her to be safe, she is my best friend.”
 
Catherine sighed Liam still didn’t know that he was actually in love with Jo and that is why he wanted to protect her so badly and he was not ready to hear that. “Yes go talk to her.”
 
“Hey Jo.” Liam whispered from the door of their room.
 
“Maybe we are too old to share a room. Maybe we are too old for me to come during the weekends.” Jo whispered back.
 
“No!” Liam took a deep breath, and continued less shouting. “No. We are not. I’m sorry I… well no I am not sorry I punched Steven but I am sorry I didn’t talk to you first. I just want you to be safe and the way he is eyeing you on the hockey field makes me feel sick.”
 
“But you were the same.”
 
“What?” Liam looked confused.
 
“That other night, when I ran out of the room and you followed me. You… you know.” Jo had felt Liam’s erections when Liam noticed that Jo had reach puberty.
 
“I am sorry you noticed. But I am not sorry that it happened. You are my best friend and I know you are pretty and well at the moment the female body is a very arousing thing for me. But I would never hurt you. I would never ever think that you would sleep with me. And I know that Victor is an ass. You are not an easy girl.”
 
“Why did you break Steven’s nose?”
 
“Because he talked badly about you and he needed to learn a lesson. Please don’t see him anymore.”
 
“I won’t if you really think he only wants to be with me because he wants to get into my knickers.”
 
“I do.”
 
Jo nodded. “Liam, don’t shut me out. Please. We are friends, you are my best friend and I miss you so much. Since summer it is all so weird.”
 
Liam rushed to her bed. “We are still friends and I am there for you and I’m sorry I shut you out.” For a while Liam was quiet and just held Jo in his arms. “I’m scared what will happen next year when I graduated. Who will protect you?”
 
“Can I still come here at the weekends?”
 
“Of course you need to keep mum company and then you can do all this girly stuff at the weekend.”
 
“And you will be at MIT.”
 
“As if.”
 
“You will, I know it. I know you will get a full ride at the MIT and then work for NASA and fly to the moon, you have to bring me a real moonstone not just a gem.”
 
Liam giggled. “Yeah that would be cool. And you can be a teacher close to me.”
 

Catherine was listening to the two teenagers. It was crazy how obvious it was. Jo and Liam were soul-mates and they were those lucky ones that met so young. In a way she was glad that the two didn’t know it, that way they can be in each other’s lives but not feel pressured to forsake their own dreams.


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112 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Sun 14 Sep 2014, 4:23 pm

Autumn fully hit and it was cold and wet, Jo was wrapped in her coats and warm jackets. It was Saturday when Catherine woke up Jo and Liam early and drove all the way to the beach with them to see the sunrise. They walked for a while before they went to a small diner to have breakfast. They ordered everything. After the long walk, Jo was awake and ate heartily. At first, they were quiet but then Liam started teasing Jo, he drunk his hot chocolate and spread his pinkie out, cut his French toast in tiny pieces and chewed those for about five minutes. He did not mean to hurt her, he never did but since summer and the joked more, he tried to make her laugh.

“Liam stop this.” Catherine looked sternly at her son who just carved in Jo’s pancakes a female body with quite large boobs.
Nevertheless, to her surprise Jo started giggling, and then loudly laughed. Catherine looked from her son to Jo and then just listened to just this so wonderful sound of Jo’s laughter.

“You are so silly Liam.” Jo was holding her stomach. Liam grinned cheeky at her.

“It is worth it to make you smile.” Liam wrapped his arm around her shoulders and pulled her in a hug for a moment. “I do anything to make you smile, Yvaine.”

Jo looked shy away and took quickly another sip of her hot cocoa. Catherine saw that Jo never stopped crushing on Liam. The young girl was head over heels in love with her son and she was glad that Liam started to treat her as if she meant the world to him and she did. Jo was everything to Liam.

“I thought we go to the swimming pool, there is a very nice one close by.” Catherine suggested.

“That sounds amazing.” Liam started to eat quicker, while Jo went a little pale.

“I haven’t packed my bathing suit.” The young girl whispered.

“I took the liberty of packing our things for the swimming pool.” Catherine said smiling.

“Oh, I see.” Jo nodded but looked at her plate. She was rather quite all the way to the swimming pool, in the changing room with Catherine and then in the swimming pool area. It was a nice pool not just for swimming it had some special pool, some were warmer, a few Jacuzzis, even a brine bath, and some water slides. It looked all very nice and like a good place for a day out with the family. Liam was already grinning and in the water when his mom and Jo can out of the girls changing room.
“Hey there you are. I thought you never come out of the changing room.” Liam pulled himself out of the pool and for the first time Catherine and Jo saw that he was not as skinny anymore. He was in the swim team, not often competing but he enjoyed training with them and he sure gained some muscles. Liam looked up and down at Jo, she was wrapped in a huge bathing towel but he noticed the clear that she had small boobs.

“Okay you two go entertain yourself if you need me I am boiling in the Jacuzzi. Be good and don’t make me regret letting you off the leash.” Catherine grinned and kissed both Liam and Jo on the cheek.

“So do you wanna go swimming or on the slides?” Liam asked Jo once his mother had left the two teenagers alone. Jo was still very quiet, she just nodded, held her towel tightly around herself and looked at Liam to make a decision.

“I think we she check out the slides and go swimming later.” Liam suggested, Jo just nodded and followed him. Liam felt odd. Jo was always shy but this was new. She never just followed Liam silently. Liam was on the way up to the slides when he noticed Jo was still standing at the bottom of the stairs. He hurried back down.

“Hey, are you okay you don’t look so good… I mean you look fine but you look bad.” Liam pulled Jo close to look at her properly.

“Don’t laugh, okay?” Jo whispered and to Liam’s surprise Jo started crying. He was always unsure what to do when she cried, he pulled in a hug and whispered.

“You know I am not laughing about anything you say.” He whispered back, he did laugh but never to hurt her.

“I cannot swim and it scares me to go in the water, I am scared to drown.” Jo was holding on tightly to Liam and they weren’t even in the water yet.

“You mean not good?” Liam never thought that children their age could not swim.

“No like at all… Mother always used to say swimming is not a sport for a lady.”

Liam pushed Jo a little away to look at her. “I’m really good in swimming, I can teach you.”

“But you wanted to go on the slides. I can wait here.”

“Come here.” Liam took Jo’s hand, went over to the benches at the side and put her towel down. Jo was feeling exposed and crossed her arms in front of her chest but followed Liam. It was crazy how much she trusted Liam. It surprised Liam that he felt sick to the stomach when a group of older teenager boys passed them and checked out Jo. He wanted to punch them, luckily Jo didn’t notice the other boys or how Liam felt. Liam led Jo upstairs to the slide. It had a traffic light system to know when it was safe to slide down for the next person. “Okay do you want me to slide first and wait at the bottom for you?”

“No!” Jo went pale and took Liam’s hand so quickly that it made him chuckle.

“Okay I guess we will go together.” Liam helped her sit down and then wrapped himself around her, before they went down the slide he took a deep breath so that his pats were calm and would not scare Jo and well it is embarrassing to show his excitement in just swim pants. “Are you ready?”

“Wait Liam, what if I don’t come up from the water.”

“Don’t worry about that. I’ll make sure nothing happen to you. Do you trust me?”

Jo looked at Liam for a moment and then said with a shaky voice. “I trust you.”

“Good.” Liam pulled Jo into his lap and off they went. Jo was screaming all the way and held on tightly to Liam and it shocked her when they hit the water, but Liam was right as soon they hit the water he lifted her up so that her head never went under water. “Are you okay Jo?”

Jo collected herself and then nodded. “That was fun, I think.”

“Good. I think, before we do that again I want you to teach you the basics of swimming. I worried the entire way down. Come on I promise you will be safe.” Liam smiled and took her hand. They went to the deep water. Liam felt more relaxed with Jo in the water even though it was the deep one and Jo was terrified to drown but Liam didn’t like her walking around in her bathing suit.

“Stop, Liam! Get me out of here!” Jo was freaking out and Liam had struggles to help her to the edge of the pool and help her out. He climbed out too and wrapped her towel around her. She was so scared, shaking and very pale.

“I’m sorry did I do something wrong?” Liam rubbed her back to warm her up and calm her down.

“I don’t want to go in the water again.” Jo whispered.

“Okay, you don’t have to.” Liam whispered back. They went back to their sun-loungers to get warm. For a while they were quiet and just watched the other people.

“When I was young Mother tried to drown me, I think she thought I was possessed or something and she tried to…”

“What the fuck was wrong with her?” Liam looked angry.

“She was just ill, it wasn’t her fault.”

“But it scared you enough to be afraid to learn to swim.” Liam looked at the lifeguard booth and suddenly had an idea. “I have an idea wait here.”

Liam came back with a blue odd-looking belt. “This will help you float. I promise you will not drown with this or your head will go under water. And this time we go in the non-swimmer pool it is warmer and you can stand in it.”

“I don’t know about this.”

“You will be completely safe. I promise.” Liam looked encouraging and Jo and in the end they went in the shallow water where Liam attached the belt to Jo. The two teenagers were in the water for a while and in the end Jo was able to swim very slowly in breaststroke. She felt not comfortable to swim when Liam was too far away, but as long as he was close by and was able to catch her she was swimming even without the belt.


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113 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Mon 08 Dec 2014, 12:27 am

WARNING! Mature topic! No under 18s








“Hey Jo?” Liam was lying on his stomach on his bed doing his homework -sort of, he had started to look into college applications and they all asked for essays and he was making a list of essay topics that would interest him- Jo looked up from her own homework. She wasn’t doing any advanced math or mathematical science this year, but even her basic math class was hard enough.

“Yes?” Jo didn’t look up she was trying to figure out the math problem on her own before she asked Liam to help her.
Liam looked at the drawing he had been doing the past half an hour. He knew Jo was still upset about her mother’s death and her self-esteem had gone to hell, whose wouldn’t knowing that she could have saved her mother if she hadn’t lost track of time. “I think I know how I can cheer you up, well more make you feel better.” Liam quickly hid the drawing and sat up.

“Liam I have to finish those math problems.”

“I help you afterwards with it.” Liam suggested, in a way he was scared that it would destroy everything between them but he had to. Since they were swimming Liam can’t get Jo’s body out of his head, and not just once did he remember her body, the way it felt like when she was sitting on his lap when they went down the slide, the way it felt to hold her when he taught her swimming. Her skin was so soft, and she smelled so good, even though she was just starting to develop a womanly body and his type was a well developed body with loads of curves but still not just once Liam had been jerking off under the shower.

Jo looked up at Liam. “Alright? What do you want to do?”

Liam sat up but he had to be careful not to show Jo that just the thought of what he wanted to do with Jo made him excited, like really excited. “Jo, your body is changing and with that change your nerves are changing and I think you look really good. I like your boobs… can I touch you? Not like Victor, I will not hurt you and stop if you really want me to.”

“Liam? I don’t know… I don’t think I want to do… be… lie with a… man… boy.”

“What, no I did not suggest to have sex with you. Just a little… fondling. It will
feel nice and not hurt you.” Liam grinned encouraging.

“You promise you stop if I asked you to?”

“Promise.” Liam got up, but he saw Jo’s eyes widen when she noticed his pants. “Well what can I say, your boobs are nice and the thought that I will touch them gets me excited.”

Jo nodded. “You promise not to act like Victor?”

“Jo I would never hurt you and if you don’t want me to feel you up I will not do it.”

“Well it would be nice to feel good even just for a moment.” Jo said while Liam sat down on her bed, she followed him and sat shyly next to him. She took off her cardigan and Liam looked hungry at her blouse covered boobs. Slowly he placed his hands on her boob a small moan escaped him.

“Let me take of the blouse.” Jo suggested and unbuttoned her blouse. And then Liam saw for the first time boobs not in a magazine or picture but real life. Jo little boobs were perky and pink and when he touched her just as soft as the rest of her skin. He took Jo’s hand and placed it on his crotch while he gently stroke her boobs.

What do you think you are doing?!” Catherine yelled. Liam jumped off Jo’s bed and Jo pulled her blouse together. “Liam! Living room, now! Jo you stay here!” Liam ran out of the room and Jo started crying. Catherine went in the corridor and took a deep breath for a moment before she went back into the room the children shared.

“Jo, sweetie. Can you explain to me what you and Liam were doing?” Catherine asked calmly.

“I’m always upset and Liam suggested to make me feel good for a moment, he said he likes my… bust and I want him to like me. He promised he would not hurt me, he would just feel me up.”

“Jo you had your hand on his crotch.” Catherine wasn’t entirely sure what to do or say.

“I’m sorry if I did something wrong…” Jo looked miserable at her knees. “But it did feel nice the way he touched me.”

“I understand, but Jo if you and Liam do… if you and Liam have thoughts of being intimate with each other, I need to think of another arrangement. You cannot share a room anymore. Do you think about how Liam looks naked?”

“No!” Jo started crying, this was such a mess. “I’m sorry! I won’t happen again! Ever!”

Catherine nodded and wrapped her arm around the girl. “I just try to make sure that you and Liam not do anything you are too young for.”

“I understand. Can I finish my homework, please?”

“Yes that’s a good idea. And I go downstairs and talk to Liam.”

Catherine knew that Jo was, well depressed unsure about herself and then there was still the crush she had on Liam.

“Liam what the hell were you thinking to feel up Jo? What next ask her to blow you?”

“Mum!” Liam looked shocked at Catherine.

“Don’t Mum me. Jo is only allowed here because I ensured the school and her father that I keep her safe and that does not mean you get to play doctor with her. So you either have to behave or you have to bunk with me and I will make sure your hands will stay on your blanket and not under it. Is that understood?” Catherine never believed in hit Liam or any child but in this moment, she actually understood why parents might do it.

“Yas, Ma’am.”  Liam knew Catherine and her voice made it clear that she was beyond angry.

“Now go upstairs and do your homework, do not dare to close the room door.”
Liam sprinted upstairs and saw Jo, she looked more miserable than before. “Hey Jo, I’m sorry if I made you do anything you didn’t want to do.”

“It’s alright, can we just forget that it happened?” Jo whispered.

“Sure.” Liam agreed, but he would never forgot her soft skin and how her hand felt on his pants.


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114 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Fri 26 Jun 2015, 9:23 pm

It was Christmas time and Graham became a visitor more often. Liam had made clear that he did not want to take part in him being there but he also did not try to sabotage Catherine’s and Graham’s relationship.

“Liam I know you said you don’t want anything to do with Graham but I would like you to hear him out. He was scared when I told him that I am pregnant and I understand him, his actions, I forgave him and I would like you to forgive him too.” Catherine looked at her son.

“He just left.” Liam said not looking up from his book.

“And he tried to find me but I never gave him the address of your grandparents’ house. You know that O’Doherty is not an unusual name. Please Liam, for me.”

“Fine.” Liam stalked downstairs and sat down next to Jo as if he needed his best friend for comfort.

“Are you going home for Christmas? Your school holiday starts tomorrow, doesn’t it?” Graham asked politely, he did not ignore Liam on purpose but he also didn’t want him to feel in the spotlight. 

“Jo never goes home, she doesn’t like flying so she stays with mum and me.” Liam said nearly sounding angry.

Graham looked at Liam. “I never meant to hurt her, and the day after I left I knew I did a mistake. We all do them.”

“Maybe, but no one of us walked away from a pregnant woman.” Liam snapped back.

“I forgot my mother and she killed herself and I wasn’t there to safe her.” Jo said two pairs of blues eyes looked at her. “We all do mistakes and we all regret them for the rest of our lives.”

Liam looked at Jo and then surprisingly he hugged Jo. “It is not your fault, you know that she was ill.”

Graham watched Liam for a while and at first he wanted to say something but then he saw Catherine shake her head. It might have been a very long time since the two adult where intimately close but they still understood each other.

“So I made a lasagne, it should be ready to eat.” Graham said and made Liam look up at him, looking rather angry again.

“I had lasagne once when I was with father and... mother, we were in Tuscany.” Jo whispered as she followed Liam, she was suddenly very shy and as so often in situations like this searches Liam’s comfort. And Liam thought it was the most amazing feeling to know that when his best friend was scared she wanted him around.

“You travelled just as much and mum and I did.” Liam said as he sat down at the table. He had been for a short time in Italy with his mother but he couldn’t remember the food.

“Liam got an A+ in his advanced math midterm.” Cathrine said proudly.

“Liam that is wonderful, congratulations. I was always good in maths, but I often had private tutors to work around my piano lessons. Jo how did you do in your mid-term?”

“I am above exactions in my literature classes, my history class, art and music. But math...” Jo went silent.

“Jo doesn’t like math. She is doing the basic math class and I help her as much as I can but, well she doesn’t like it. It is stupid that she has to do it. I think she should be able to do another class.” Liam said heated, always protecting his best friend.  

“Liam, Graham just asked a question. And he knows that the only math Jo can do is frictions because they are part of music.” Catherine said.

“Fine.” Liam was quiet the rest of the evening but every now and then Graham caught him starring at him or gently touching Jo’s pinkie when the girl seemed nervous.

“Liam why are you so angry with Graham?” Jo asked when the two were in bed.

“Because he left mum alone after he knocked her up.”

“Liam, I don’t think he had very much experience with girls and I would not be surprised if he had no one to explain him where babies come from. So when he was lying with your mother he had no idea what could happen.”

Liam was quiet for a long time, so long that Jo thought he had fallen asleep. Though the sound in her voice made him think.

“You really think so?” Liam whispered?

“Yes. I know so. He told me that he had no other girl than your mum.” Jo whispered back. “Liam I know Katie said we shouldn’t but I feel a little scared. Can I sleep with you in your bed?”

“Sure. But I got to go for a pee first. I’ll be back in a minute.” Liam helped her quickly to get her duvet and pillow into his bed and then went out of the room. He waited and then went into the kitchen.

“Hello?” A very tired male voice answered

“Was she the first you nailed?” Liam asked rather bluntly.

“Liam? Is that you?” Graham asked.

“Yes. Just answer the question.”

“Yes she was. And I was very shy and inexperienced. And the thought to become a father scared me. Not that my father is not a nice man but he is a very strict man and I was scared I would be like him even when I didn’t want to be. I want to be a fair und understanding father. But I don’t know how to be that.”

“If you hurt her again, I’ll kill you and I don’t just say that, I mean it.” Liam said sternly.

“Understood. Thank you.” Graham smiled on the other side of the phone. Liam didn’t say anything else but hung up. He went back upstairs and pulled Jo in his arm, he really liked holding her like that.


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115 Re: Another Way, Another Life on Sat 01 Aug 2015, 3:58 pm

Jo wanted to be happy and proud and smile but the thought of the letter that Liam got a few weeks ago and today was the day Liam was graduating. Jo had another year at Concord Academy while Liam would start in August at MIT. He got accepted with a full scholarship, even though Graham had offered to pay but neither Cathy nor Liam would accept any money.

“Jo, you look lovely!” Liam grinned and hugged his best friend. He knew that she was said he would be leaving but MIT was in Boston so he already said he would be home at least every second weekend and Jo could visit him any time.

“Thanks. You look nice too. All handsome in your suit.” Jo grinned and fixed his collar. Catherine and Graham came to the two teenagers.

“Jo you look so lovely in your yellow dress.” Graham smiled at the young girl.

“Thanks.” Jo whispered she didn’t even notice that she stepped closer to Liam, not because she was scared but because he let her.

“Are you all set Liam?” Graham asked as he gently patted Liam’s shoulder. Liam smiled and nodded. It took him some time but now he sort of adjusted to his father being back he even started calling him dad and he also accepted that his mum finally found the man she was always looking for. Though both Graham and Catherine they would never get married and take it slow.
The graduation ceremony was nice and as expected but the most exciting part was that Liam would join Jo on a journey through Europe. They would even fly a part that Jo tried to forget but Liam tried to calm her down. They started in London, via Paris, Rome and Stuttgart where they stayed at her cousin Lorelai. For about a three days Liam was mesmerised by her but then he saw Jo in her riding clothes on a stallion. She looked so free and happy and drop dead gorgeous. He was confused that there was the goddess of woman in the house and the only girl he could look at was Jo. Sweet, innocent Jo.

“It will be alright, I’ll be home in two weeks and you can call me when you need help with your math homework.” Liam hugged his Jo again, Jo was crying. She and Catherine were dropping of Liam at his dorm at MIT.

“I know, but what if someone bullies me, or I suddenly am really bad in all my classes... with whom am I going to chat on the weekends?” Jo hiccupped into his shoulder.

“We write letters, every day. We call every other day and in two weeks I’m home to wash my laundry.” Liam held her tight and was glad his mom was close by.

“Jo honey, it is time for us to drive home. Liam has to do some errands and then he has meeting with his class mates. Come here.” Catherine pulled the young girl in her arms, kissed Liam on the cheek and went with Jo into the car.
As they drove away Liam waving at them and they are waving back. “Katie! I can’t do this. I can’t leave Liam behind and.... He will meet another smart girl and fall in love with her and forget me.” Jo broke down and heavily sobbed in the car.

“I never thought that this is possible but you really did meet your soul mate right?”

Jo nodded very upset.

“I did and I am so scared that he will find a girl that wants to get screwed by him and he will like that more than me, shy and weird.” Jo whispered.
“Jo darling, even Liam doesn’t know it yet but the day he stayed with you behind after school he fell in love with you. He just doesn’t know how to handle that, he saw me hurt for so long that he is scared to love you. Scared he could lose you. Scared that one day you look at him and see that he is nothing more than an Irish country boy and he doesn’t understand that you love him because he is an Irish country boy.” Catherine took Jo’s hand and squeezed it. “I might not pray very often but you are the girl I always prayed Liam would find. And there you were, an English Rose in America.”

Jo smiled and nodded trying not to worry that Liam would forget her.


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