Running down the stairs, Jesse kneeled down by the side and waited. “Daddy! Daddy!” 6 year old Ellie called as she too ran down the stairs. “Daddy, no fair you said you—“
Just before her feet touched the last step, Jesse swooped up and caught her in his arms. “Gotcha!” He teased, taking his free hand and tickling his daughter all over.
“Daddy! Daddy, stop!” She giggled uncontrollably. “Mommy! Daddy, won’t stop!” She called out, still giggling.
“Jesse, stop,” Angie said gently as she walked out the living room sliding on her tailored trench coat. “Are you two done playing, we don’t want to be late?” She hinted.
“Where we going?” Ellie asked, as she hung almost upside down in her daddy’s arm.
“You said you wanted waffles from Krystal’s this morning,” she reminded. “Jesse, her blood is going to rush to her head, get her up.”
Eyes popping wide, Ellie jumped out his arms and dashed back upstairs. “Let me get my shoes,” she called in her wake.
“Stop running!” Angie called back, just before Jesse pulled her flush against him and wrapped his arms around her waist.
“You alright this morning?” He asked, gently kissing her cheek. “You’ve been up quite a while and all last night you tossed and turned. What’s going on?”
Shrugging, Angie dropped her head. “I’m just… Tired. I haven’t had any days off, barely have the evenings off… This low staff thing has to come to an end, soon,” she said with a sigh. “I miss you guys so much. I only get to see you in the mornings and evenings. Mornings we’re ripping and running to get out and in the evening… I can… I can barely make it home before Ellie is put to bed. I just need a break,” she whispered, leaning into his chest and resting.
Jesse held his wife tighter and kissed her forehead. “Hey, how about tonight I take Ellie to Frankie and Madison’s for the weekend? I’ll prepare dinner and help you relax, sound good?”
“Yes. You deserve it, baby.”
“May I request a bubble bath?” She hinted, with a twinkle in her eye.
Laughing, Jesse dipped Angie and gave her a long tender kiss. “Whatever you want my sweet angel.”
“Ewwww! Not again!” Ellie fussed as she came down the stairs. “Can we go eat please?”
“It’s may we and yes we may, as soon as you both put on your coats.”
“Angie! Oh my goodness, it’s so good to see you again,” Krystal yelped.
“You too, sweetie!”
After the infamous party at Adam’s where JR Chandler shot 9 people and killed 4, both Krystal and her family and Angie and her family left Pine Valley looking for a new start. But as they already knew, there was no place like Pine Valley. Krystal had only returned 6months ago, but Angie and Jesse returned almost 2years ago. When they felt Frankie had healed from his gunshot physically and emotionally as well as moved on as much as he could from the death of Randi, they came back and reset up their roots. Angie and Jesse purchased a 2 story home on the outskirts of the city and reclaimed their positions as Chief of Staff and Chief of Police.
“How are you guys doing? How’s Frankie?” She asked after she returned from placing their orders.
“We’re good. Uh… Frankie, he’s doing great right now. You know he and Madison are engaged!”
“Really!? That’s great. I understand when he lost Randi it was hard, considering she was also pregnant.”
“Yea, it was hard. But Frankie is strong and with the help and strength of us and Madison he came out stronger than he’s ever been,” Angie interjected. Nobody knew it but the family that while Randi was pregnant, it did not belong to Frankie. The baby had survived the trauma and because Frankie was her husband he had them keep her alive until they could take the baby. It was what Randi would have wanted. Well after the baby was born, it was discovered that the baby belonged to one of Randi’s model buddies, after finding out he stepped in and took full responsibility for their son. To say Frankie was heartbroken would have been an understatement, he was torn to pieces of the discovery and had sworn to be single until the day he died, but of course Madison wasn’t having any of that and stepped in to help him recover from his injuries and heartbreak.
“How are you and Jenny doing? How have you guys settled back in?”
Krystal sighed. “It took a minute. She was not a fan of coming back, especially after losing Colby, but after some coaxing from me and Tad, she eased on back in. But we’re good. It’s just so weird being back after all that’s happen. I mean, Pine Valley just isn’t the same without Colby, Greenlee, Ryan and Randi,” she replied. “I even miss my Marissa and I know she’s doing okay.”
Nodding, Angie reached up and took hold of Krystal’s hand. “Hey, I’m sure Marissa and Bianca are doing just fine in Paris.”
“Yea, I know, I just miss her so much. The doctor’s say she’s getting better and better every day, but she doesn’t want to see me. She doesn’t want me to see her with all the tubes and stuff.”
“I know. But I’ve kept in touch with her doctors and they are very, very sure she will make a full come back. Just still won’t be able to do certain things.”
“Auntie Krystal, can Jenny come spend the night with us this weekend?”
Krystal hugged Elle and smiled. “Actually why don’t you come over tonight. Jenny’s having a few girls from school over for a tea party and sleep over, you are more than welcome.”
“Mommy, Daddy, can I? Please, please!?” She begged.
Jesse looked from her to Angie. “I thought you wanted to hang out with Frankie and Madison this weekend?”
“I can hang out with them next time. Please?”
“Okay… You may go over. We need to pack you an overnight bag.”
“Actually pack a bag for two nights. Tonight is tea and movies, tomorrow is spa day and more movies,” she jumped in before excusing herself to go and check on their breakfast.
Reaching under the table, Jesse gently squeezed Angie’s leg. “I love you, so much,” he whispered.
“I love you too,” she replied, giving him a little kiss on the lips. “I can’t wait until tonight.”
“Oh trust me… You will not be disappointed,” he vowed, just as Krystal brought their food and set them on the table. “Thank you.”
Midway into breakfast and talking about what happened the day before, Ellie paused and tilted her head giving them as inquisitively look. “Are we going out this summer?”
“You mean on a vacation?” Angie asked, before getting some coffee.
“I don’t know… Jesse, baby, what do you think?”
Clearing his throat and wiping his mouth, Jesse shrugged. “I guess, if that’s what you all want. I was just going to have us go to the house in New York and relax.”
“No, we have to do something fun!”
“Let’s go to… Disney World! Come on, daddy, you been saying for forever!” She exasperated.
After sharing a look with his wife and thinking it over in his head a little longer, Jesse nodded. “I don’t see why we can’t go. We have the money and we all do deserve a break… Angie?”
“I think we should start planning. See if the kids would like to join us too.”
“Alright then, it’s a date! This year we will be going to Disney World!” He yelped, getting a cheer out of his youngest. To be honest, he was just as happy as Elle, if not more. After the shooting incident and their family left Pine Valley, it had been nothing but work, work and more work. Once they got Frankie and Randi settled into a top notch hospital in Minnesota and found a place to live, they hadn’t stopped. They both worked, Jesse at a University teaching criminology and Angie at a private practice, they both went back forth taking care of Frankie and together took care Ellie. It wasn’t until their 3rd year there did they realize that Pine Valley would always be their home and they couldn’t fully rest until they were back. So once again they began to pack, flew back and forth to find a permanent home in PV and get their jobs back as well as get Ellie started into a daycare. When they returned they only had one week to rest and after that they ripped and ran for 2 years straight. “We deserve it,” he whispered, finishing his meal and later coffee.
“We sure do,” Angie whispered back, holding his hand. “We sure do.”
After having breakfast, Jesse and Angie dropped Ellie off at school. “You be good,” Angie said as he leaned over and kissed her daughter’s cheek.
“I always am!” She replied, happily.
“I’ll pick you up at the same time,” Jesse called out as they watched her catch up with her friends and file into the school. “It seems like only yesterday, you were giving birth to her.”
Sighing, Angie nodded in agreement.
“C’mon, let’s get on out of here. Get you to work, Mrs. Hubbard.”
The hospital was about 20mins away from Pine Valley Prep and 10mins away from PVPD. “Thank you… Don’t forget, I get off at—“
“No, don’t you forget you get off at 2 and I will be here to pick you up no later than 2:05. We’re going to start this weekend off right and nas—“
Just before he could finish, somebody walked past his truck leading Angie to cover his mouth. “Stop it,” she mumbled, shaking her head. “I get the idea. Now go to work. I’ll clock out at 1:50 and be outside waiting,” she promised.
“Alright, if I have to come in there and get you, you will be in a lot of trouble,” he warned, letting his hand wander down her back a bit, once again leading Angie to reach at him.
“Hmmm, I might just have to test that out,” she teased, before leaning into him more and giving him the most salaciously kiss ever. “You have a good day, Chief Hubbard,” she whispered as she grabbed her purse from his hand and swayed away, leaving Jesse leaning up against the truck in pain.
Groaning, Jesse did a mini squat and popped his neck. “You’re an evil woman, Angela Hubbard. Evil,” he said to himself as he jumped back into his truck and after making sure his wife made it into the hospital headed on to work.
The minute Jesse walked into the door, Lt. Perry rushed around his desk and handing him a stack of post it notes. Looking down, Jesse questioned. “What happened to the ‘while you were out’ notes?”
“We’re having a slight problem with inventory,” he replied. “We’re short on replacement vests, coffee, and even a few patrol cars. After that pile up last month she hasn’t given us more cars for the officers to do their patrol. Mayor Blanco went over your head and told Gengi to run all supply orders through her. She says that our spending has gotten out of control and she needs to monitor everything.”
“You’re kidding? Please tell me you’re kidding,” he sighed, shaking his head and reaching up with his free hand to rub away the beginning of a headache. “Uh… Get me the numbers for the people we order from and if Mayor Blanco calls, transfer it to me. This is my house, I control what comes and goes out of here,” he fussed, before turning and heading toward the door that led to his office. “This day started off perfect, now it’s going to the crapper,” he mumbled, slamming his door and instantly picking up the phone on his desk.
“Angela Hubbard?” Angie answered as she slipped into her lab coat.
“Hey, baby,” he sighed.
Hearing the tension in his voice, Angie eased back into her chair and picked up the receiver. “What’s wrong, baby? Everything alright?”
“Already?” She asked. “You just got there. What has she done now?”
After taking a seat in his own chair, Jesse explained to his wife what he’d just been told. “Angie, I don’t understand why she has a problem with me. Despite all the crap she’s dealt my way, I did it. I listen to her complain and whine about what I’m doing with my officers and the perps, and said nothing. I just don’t get it!”
“I know, baby. Listen… That’s what happens when you’re in a position that you have not only worked hard in since you’ve started, but one in which you have made your own. The way you handle that place, this town, you pretty much own this place and she hates that. She hates that you have control over people and she doesn’t and she’s in a higher position than you are,” she explained. “Just like Hayward use to do to me. He hated the fact that I could do a better job than him and he would do any and everything in his power to knock me down. Make me feel as if I wasn’t good at what I do. It’s what people with a need for power and need to feel needed, do.”
Smirking, Jesse sat back. “You’re better than good at your job, you’re great… But how come I can’t stand up to Blanco and you can stand up to Hayward? It should come easy right?”
“What, because I’m woman, I shouldn’t be able to stand up to a man,” she teased, before bursting out laughing when Jesse sighed.
“No, you know what I mean—“
“I know, I know,” she interjected. “The reason it doesn’t come easy for you is because you are a man who respects women. Simple as that. You’d rather a woman go off than you disrespect them. That’s just who you are. As long as you know and everybody else knows you’re doing a good job, that’s all that matters. Mayor Blanco will get hers, I’m sure of it,” Angie vowed.
“I guess,” he sighed again. “What started out to be a great day, has turned into hell and it hasn’t even gotten started good.”
“No, don’t think that way,” she started.
Just as his wife started to say more, Jesse’s other line beeped. Sighing heavily, Jesse spoke. “Hey, baby, hold on a second, I have another call.” And quickly switched over. “This is Chief Hubbard.”
“Hey, Jesse, this is Cedrick. With the FBI,” he replied, reminding him.
Being in his jacked up mood, it took Jesse a minute to register the caller’s name and voice. “Ohhhh! Hey, Ricky, what’s going on?”
“You got a minute to chat?” He asked. “I’m in town for the weekend and there’s something I need to go over with you.”
“Oh yea, yea. Come on over.”
“Cool! I should be there within the hour. Need to go check in at the hotel and what not.”
“Alright, see you then,” he ended before switching over to his wife. “Sorry about that.”
“Oh, it’s okay. Everything alright?”
“Oh yea, just an old friend of mine in town. He left the force right before we left Pine Valley.”
“Oh, okay. Well honey, I need to go and do my rounds and… Well run this place. Talk to you later on?”
“Yes indeed. And baby, thank you for the talk.”
Smiling and coming to her brown, peep toe pump covered feet, Angie replied. “It was no problem at all. Love you big daddy.”
“mhmmmm, I love you more.”
Jesse was in the middle of helping with an interrogation when there was a knock at the door. “Don’t get too comfortable,” he barked, hitting the table and staring into the man’s eyes. “I’m not done with you yet,” he warned, before standing straight up and walking out the room. “What’s up?”
“Agent Bolden is here to speak with you,” Officer Jones reported. “And Lt. Perry said he can take it from here.”
“No, I’ll get to him later. Leave him in there and turn the heat up just a bit in there. Gonna smoke the truth out of his ass. Excuse me.”
“Chief Jesse Hubbard! Long time no see!” Cedrick greeted, after peeling his gloves off his hands. “Man this weather ain’t no joke, I need to hurry up and get back down to the south,” he joked.
“Aww man, don’t be a wuss,” Jesse teased giving him that age ole man hug. “What’s going on man!?”
“Nothing much, nothing much. Working as always. You?”
“Same thing, with the addition of making sure my family is doing just fine. Come on in my office. I have one my officers running to the coffee shop next door to get us a fresh cup of coffee. We’re having some issues with ours,” he lied as he led him into the office and took a seat behind his desk. “So what’s up? What brings you back up this way?”
Having already worked for Jesse Hubbard many years ago and for several years, Cedrick E. Bolden knew better than anyone that when Jesse said they were having some issues with the coffee machine, it was code. “Mayor Blanco at it again?” He hinted. “C’mon man. I use to work here. You know I know code when I hear it and see it.”
Jesse look up and chuckled. “Yea, man. She’s at it again, but I’m in the process of getting everything under control before the start of Monday morning… Anyway, I don’t want to talk about her. Change the subject. Why you back here?”
“Well, I came here for you. You know you’re a hard man to keep track of. I know any and everybody can be found, but you… You for sure know how to stay under the radar. I came back looking for you about 5 or 6 years ago and they said that you and your whole family had packed up and moved out of Pine Valley. I did locate you in Minnesota, but as far as finding you, finding you, it was not easy.”
Intrigued, Jesse sat up and leaned forward. “And why have you been looking for me, oh secretive one? What reason brings you into my office?”
“A position with government’s finest… The F.B.I!”
“Huh?” Jesse asked dumbfounded.
“You heard me,” He laughed. “The Federal Bureau of Investigation wants you, Jesse Hubbard.”