The next day Jon awoke to his cell phone vibrating next to the bed stand. He still had on his tuxedo shirt and pants from the night before.
He pushed the empty wine bottle out of his way and picked up his cell.
“Good morning sweetheart. Your baby is ready and in good shape.” Said the voice on the other end.
“Obie?” Jon said laughing.
“Who else would be calling you at 7 in the morning again doing some strange ass thing for you that is not within my job requirements.” He quipped.
“She’s running good man?” Jon asked,
”Jonny, she’s purring like a kitten. I even took her out for a few miles. I tweaked some parts here and there on her, but she’s perfect.”
”Thanks Obie, I appreciate it.” Jon said.
“I’ll keep it on the continuing running tally of things you owe me. Jonny, seriously be well. That’s all we all want. Come back when you’re ready and fuck everyone else. “
“All right man. Thanks and take care.” Jon said. Hanging up the phone.
“He rubbed his eyes and looked at his watch.
“Shit, seven o’clock is still way too early sometimes.” He said to himself.
He got up. Took off his tuxedo shirt and went into the bathroom. He turned on the shower and decided to let the water run a bit before he got in.
Quickly he called the concierge to have a car waiting for him and have room service bring up some coffee and eggs.
He put his things into his leather shoulder bag and put his laptop in it’s own leather bag. He took out a pair of jeans and a black t-shirt and laid them on the bed.
Jon walked into the bathroom. He took off his pants, shoes and shocks and jumped right in.
The warm water ran over his body slowly. He felt as if it were washing away one part of his life. Jon took some body wash from the shower caddy and slowly began to wash himself from head to toe. The body wash smelled of sandalwood and jojoba.
The soapsuds were making a trail from his back down towards the curve of his firm torso. He rinsed off and proceeded with the wash to make a new trail from his tight ass down his thighs and calves.
He rinsed off once more and felt the water rush down his back and ass. The more he thought about things, the more he knew he was making the right decision.
With the rock star persona temporarily washed away. Jon dried himself off and put on his jeans and t-shirt. He noticed that room service had brought up his coffee and eggs. Next to it was a note addressed to him.
Figuring it was a check, he quickly opened it.
“Dear Jon, you may not know me yet. But I needed you to know that I support and love you. Be there for your children and find peace. All of us need you to come back strong and share you gift with us. My bar in Beaumont is called the Lone Star. We’ll be having a party on 4th of June. RSVP me if you can make it. All the best to you, Love Kate.”
Jon looked around quickly wondering how the letter got past security. He looked at it again and laughed.
When he arrived at his home in New Jersey. In the driveway stood Richie with bags in hand smiling. “Well it’s about time.” Richie said.
“Who is Kate?” Jon asked him.
Richie looked dumbfounded. “I don’t know. Why? “ he asked.
“She’s not one of your friends?” Jon asked.
‘Nope.” Richie shook his head.
“This is lady left this note on my tray earlier. I just assumed you knew her.”
He gave the note to Richie.
Richie skimmed the letter and looked just as surprised as Jon.
“No Bro. Don’t know her. I take it she’s a fan?”
“I don’t know. She’s knows we’re going.” Jon said.
That’s why I thought it was one of your friends. The announcement hasn’t been made yet.”
”Hmm. “ Richie said. “I wouldn’t worry about it. If she’s got a place in Texas, we should check it out.”
“Huh?” Jon said.
“Get out of your comfort zone. Let’s have some fun.” Richie told him.
“We don’t know her Rich.”
“So? Let’s get out there and meet her and anyone else that we want to.”
“You’re not worried about some chick we don’t know wanting us to hang with her.”
“No?” said Richie.
Jon looked blankly at him.
“Come on. I have a feeling she’s harmless. “ Richie reassured him.
Jon sighed and glanced cautiously at his friend.
“Oh Jon quit acting like a dad for a few weeks and get back to being a roving rock star.” Obie said walking behind him with the bike.
“There she is.” Jon smiled. As he glanced at the red and white custom Harley Davidson he had taken on many a trip.
“Have fun.” Obie told him. “I’ll be dong something for you while you’re gone that as usual is not in my job description.” Richie laughed. “Ain’t that the truth.”
“Sad part isn’t it. The things I do for our boy Jonny.” Obie winked. Jon smiled.
Obie patted him on the back and drove off.
“Daddy! Daddy!” Jake and Romeo said running over to their father.
He swept them both up his arms and swung them around. Jon was so happy to see them. Jesse with Stephanie followed the younger two with caution.
“How’s my boys?” Jon said giving the two younger boys a kiss on the cheek.
“Good.” Jake said. “Guess what? I made the baseball team!” Jake told him.
“You did? Jakey! That’s great.”
Jesse got to him and hugged him.
“I got a homer. Did Nana tell you?” he asked.
“No, I didn’t get to call her back last night.” Jon told him.
“Hey Dad. Uncle Mookie?” Stephanie said as she greeted both her father and Richie. “Nice speech last night.” She continued.
“Nice article Steph.” Jon said giving her hug. She broke free from him. Looking surprised.
“You mean you’re not pissed?” she asked.
“No. Why would I be pissed? It was very good.” He told her.
“Doesn’t it go under the Jovi oath? No secrets? No airing of Dirty Laundry?” she asked.
“No. You were just expressing how you felt. I understand that Steph. This year has been hard on everyone. Especially you.”
“Do these guys know yet?”
“Know what?” Jesse asked.
“Dad’s only home for tonight. He postponed his tour so that he could take a vacation. Isn’t that right Dad? Uncle Mookie?” Stephanie glared at Richie.
“Steph, that’s not true. Your father is not going on vacation.” Richie explained.
“Oh Uncle Mookie. Spare me. You think with all that time off that he’ll actually stay home? With us? Give us a break.”
“Stephanie Rose Bongiovi!” Jon yelled.
“John Francis!” she yelled back.
”Don’t talk to Richie like that.” Jon retorted.
“And don’t treat me like Jakey, Romeo and Jesse. I’m not a child. Just go Dad. Go and play rock star, feel better about yourself and then come home. I’m out of here. I’m staying with Nana and Papa. By the way, if you care they’re back home in Jersey. “ She said sarcastically.
“Fine.” Said Jon. “Go.”
“Make sure you send me a freakin postcard.” She said walking into the house.
“Hey Steph watch your mouth!” Richie told her.” “Says who? My mother? She’s not here and him? What does he care?” she said marching past both of them and slamming the side door behind her.
Jon put up his hand and shook his head. “So you’re really leaving us to go on vacation?” Jesse asked him.
“Can we go Daddy?” Jake asked.
“Yay! We go!” Romeo squealed. Jon kneeled down to meet Romeo and Jake. “I’m not going on vacation guys. Daddy just needs time to sort things out. Is it about Mom?” asked Jesse. Tears welled up in Jon’s eyes.
“Yes. I’m not being far to all of you and I need to figure out how to make things better. “
“Daddy, do that here so that you can go to my baseball games.” Jess asked.
“You will all the time. He gets sick of seeing you win all the time. He wants to see me. Right daddy?” Jon snickered. “I love all of you so much. I promise when I get home I’ll go to every game I can. Even if Jesse’s team wins all the time.”
Jesse sighed. “Well if this stops you from being so sad all the time. Go Dad.” Jesse said.
“You sure. You’re okay with this buddy?” Jon asked him.
“I’m not but this isn’t about us. You said. Right?”
“No it’s me.” Jon said.
“Well I’m mad because all you do and come and go! “ Jake said. “That’s all you do! Not right Daddy.” Jake continued.
“Jakey, you know that when I leave I’m going to work.”
:”Not this time. I think Jake’s getting like Steph and I. I’m going to pack” Jesse told him sharply.
“Jess?” Jon said.
“Me too!” Jake said running after Jesse.
“Daddy are you going in the helicopter? I like when you leave in the helicopter.” Romeo said.
Jon shook his head.” No Romeo. I’m not.”
“Oh man. Hey guys, wait up!” Romeo said running after his brothers.
Richie walked over to Jon.
“Steph hates me.” Jon said sadly.
“No Jonny. She doesn’t. “ Richie said.
“No Rich. She really does. See how made she got. I knew she was going to react like that.”
“Jon, that’s grief talking. She loves you. You’re being too hard on yourself.”
“Am I?” he said.
“Yes. Let’s go in the house have a great meal. Hug your kids and ride out of here in the morning. “
“A little space won’t hurt anyone right now.” Richie said.
That night at Jon’s Shoe Inn Pub that was on his property, he and Richie feasted on Chicken w/Angel Hair Pasta, salad and red wine. The two laughed and reminiscenced about all the different things that have happened to them on past tours and past motorcycle tours.
The two of them planned out their trip complete with stops in New Mexico, Arizona, Texas, and off to Nashville. They would take the private jet to New Mexico and ride the rest of the way and back home.
Jon brought along his camera, his journal and his guitar. He knew that with Richie around, he somehow or another would wind up either writing or playing somewhere.