Pucks, Sticks and a New Barn – Bellevue Bullies Read Online Toni Aleo

Categories Genre: Contemporary, Sports Tags Authors:

Total pages in book: 11
Estimated words: 9744 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 49(@200wpm)___ 39(@250wpm)___ 32(@300wpm)

Jayden Sinclair has known this day was coming. No matter how much work he put in during his successful hockey career, his injuries have become too significant to overcome.
With Baylor and their boys by his side, he’s forced to make a tough decision about his career. But while the Assassins have become his professional family, his real family has always been looking out for him too. And they have conspired to create a new opportunity for his future on the ice.

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************


I’m Sorry


I’ve been mentally and physically dreading this appointment.

The boys are with Mom and Dad—yes, I still find it weird that my dad married my husband’s mom, but it’s been a while now, so I need to just accept it and move on. Still, weird, but it’s great because the boys love being with their grandparents. I guess I could have left them at the house alone. Dawson is old enough to keep an eye on Louis, but I feel as if maybe Jayden and I might need some time alone.

To accept.

To grieve.

I’ve watched my strong, resilient husband fight against his injuries. Though, when the dreadful and terrifying injury happened, I think I knew he’d never play again. It was such a freak fucking accident, one I am still very upset about. The Nashville Assassins, the team Jayden captains, were playing the Jets. He was positioned behind the goal, waiting for his team to set up with new players after a line change. He’d done it tons of times, no big deal, except one of the Jets’ forwards felt he could pick off the puck.

The player rushed Jayden, much to his surprise, so Jayden went to defend, but the toe of his skate got caught in the back of the net. His leg stayed stuck, while his body went the other direction, snapping his knee. That wasn’t the worst of it, though. When he fell, he fell right into the forward’s knee, face first, shattering his nose, knocking out his front teeth, and receiving a concussion. To add insult to injury, the Jets scored while my husband lay on the ice, blood and teeth in his gloves.

It was traumatizing, to say the least.

Especially for the boys.

That was a little over fifteen months ago, and while his knee and nose have healed and he has new front teeth, he still can’t kick the effects of concussion. He’s been having terrible migraines, and the prescriptions have been working, but I know doctors are fearful of another concussion. I was terrified when I found out this wasn’t his first.

Instead, it was his sixth. Since childhood.

Don’t get me wrong; concussions are a part of all sports. It happens. But even as a female hockey player, I’ve only had one, and I played with boys all my life. Broken bones—a lot of those—but thankfully, I didn’t suffer the head injuries like Jayden has. It’s all so frustrating and scary, especially since now they seem to have caught up with him.

The doctor looks over the scans of Jayden’s last CT. I hold Jayden’s hand in both of mine as he rubs his thumb along the inside of my left wrist. I gaze at his profile as he watches the doctor, visibly on pins and needles. He wants so badly to be released. He wants to be on the ice with his team. He goes to practice and even works out with the guys, but not being on the ice makes him feel as if he isn’t on the team. I get it since I had to medically retire after just one year in the NHL. I shattered my knee during a game, and they told me I’d never play again. It took a long three years, but I proved them wrong. I didn’t make it back to the NHL, but I did win a gold medal in the Olympics in women’s hockey.

I still haven’t decided whether that’s better than a Stanley Cup.

But all that doesn’t matter; I needed to focus on Jayden. I know I’m just scared, and that’s why I’m lost in my thoughts. I want nothing more than for Jayden to be healthy and happy. He’s been so hard on himself. Borderline depressed. When I noticed, I started encouraging him to go to therapy. He listened, and we stayed ahead of it. Together. Like we always have.

God, he is the love of my life.

I found him early in life, and just as I was on the day I met him while on vacation in Florida, I am still completely and utterly attracted to him. I’d played hockey with boys for as long as I could remember, but when I played against Jayden, I knew it was different. I wasn’t playing to win; I was playing to impress him. I wanted him and knew he was my future. Now, with two kids and many years of marriage behind us, I’ve never been more in love with him than I am now.

His dark hair is longer these days, curling around his ears and neck. Both boys have longer hair and wanted their dad to match them. I’m not used to it. I’m used to the clean sides and trim top, but I have to admit, he’s gorgeous either way. His eyes are still such a devastating green that capture my heart every time they lock on me. He’s still so lean and strong. Even now, when I know he’s scared out of his mind, he sits with such confidence.