Bearly Healed:Pacific Northwest Bears(2)

By: Moxie North

True, she was never one to fade into the background. Her short hair was always some crazy color. Often changing week to week. She had tattoos, some that matched Effie’s. Others that were much more complicated. She dressed like a homeless gothic punk most of the time. Not that she called her style that, but Effie had often remarked on those traits.

Now people stared with pity. They clucked their tongues and said things like “you poor thing,” and “I’ll pray for you.” Nice thoughts sure, but not what Cassie wanted to hear. She didn’t want people looking at her for any other reason than her just being outlandish.

Her tattoos were covered now. The awesome garter and nine-millimeter gun tattoo on her thigh hidden by stretch pants. A borrowed oversize t-shirt of Dax’s covered her slight frame but left the pin-up girl tattoo on her arm visible.

The hair that had been orange with red tips was now blonde on top with orange tips. It had grown out during her hospital stay, and even though Effie offered to dye it, she declined. She just had her cut it shorter so it wouldn’t be in the way. The temptation to use her hair to cover her scar would have been futile anyway.

She was always tiny, not that she didn’t eat like a six-year-old. Petite was just who she was, but after her stay in the hospital she was tiny. She even felt it. Her muscles atrophied from being bedridden for so long. Even after she managed to start hobbling around, she tired so easily from the injuries that she often took a pain pill and slept the day away.

Effie was worried. Cassie’s internal radar was well aware of the stress she was putting on her friend. Effie was pregnant now. Her baby was due soon. She should be happy and excited about her new baby. Not worried about her bestie’s downward spiral.

Cass thought it was funny how your rational mind knew good and well that your attitude was shit. But your external persona didn’t seem to care.

That’s where she was now. She just didn’t care.

Dax had come to her and expressed his concern about Effie. He basically wanted her to buck up. She got that. But it wasn’t happening. It was all too much. So instead, she asked to run away.

Luckily, Dax knew just the place. His sister Kenzi was married to Conner Rochon. Dax used to visit there and said staying there was better than a four-star hotel. The Rochon cabin set back into the woods with Connie Rochon, the mother of Conner, who was ready to pamper and coddle might just be the thing.

So that’s why they were flying out to a small airport on the Olympic peninsula to finish their drive into the forest. Effie didn’t think she or Cassie would handle the hours long trip from their vineyard on the other side of the Cascade mountain range.

The rattle of a pill bottle was heard in the back, and Dax and Effie’s eyes went back to Cass shaking out a pill. She popped it into her mouth and washed it back with a bottle of water. She didn’t care if they saw her. Their gazes were part of her life now. The constant watching and analyzing. She tried to ignore it.

She was watching them out of the corner of her eyes. She envied them; they were so fucking gorgeous. Dax looked like he’d stepped out of a men’s magazine, all tall dark and handsome. Although he wasn’t so dark anymore. When Cassie had met him, he’d been dying his hair to tick off his mom, which Cass totally approved of. Today his hair was more of a golden brown, his face clean shaven. Dressed in dark slacks and button up long sleeve shirt in white. Cassie called it his uniform. He was almost always dressed business casual.

Her best friend Effie was a fashion icon in Cassie’s mind. Somehow Effie had found her own style mixing rockabilly with classic fifties chic. Although being pregnant had been a bit of a challenge for someone who normally dressed in tight fitting clothes. Effie had managed to morph her style to accommodate her growing belly. Lots of stretchy pants with trapeze tops. Her hair was done, though. Looking like she’d just come from the salon with a wash and set. And no matter how much Dax complained, she still wore kickass high heels.

They were beautiful together, and their baby would probably come out fashionably forward as well. Cassie, well she looked one step above homeless, but then, who did she have to impress?

Chapter 2

“I really hope this is the answer. I need my friend back. This baby needs its Auntie,” Effie said, grabbing her mate’s hand. Her eyes scanned back to the rear of the plane where her friend sat trying to ignore them.

“Do you think this is going to work?” Effie whispered. She ran an agitated hand over her very round belly.

“It’s what we are going to try. If this doesn’t work, maybe there is some European spa we can send her to,” Dax said with a small smile. He wasn’t totally joking.

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