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Jared the Paramedic III ~ Redemption

Copyright 2018-2019 Snowblind. All Rights Reserved.

Chapter 37: At the Cabin


It was a few days after the shooting.  Jared had the cabin ready for everyone to arrive.  Liam had gone shopping to restock the cupboards with dry and canned goods.  With the fresh vegetables they brought, the meat in the freezers, and the cupboards all full, they could feed a large army of people for an extended period of time.  With the guests this weekend, the dress code was to start with short pants, possibly moving to loincloths.

Jared had gone to Jett's farm to speak with his family.  Jeff was working out in the shop servicing a combine so Jett had run out to ask him to come inside for a cup of coffee with Jared.  His father saw the hope in his son's eyes and followed him back to the house.  Jamie, Jackie, and Jett's mother Louise were all sitting there with Jared.

After they each got a cup of coffee, Jared invited the men to the special sweat ceremony at the cabin on Saturday.  Louise asked many questions about the ceremony, listening carefully to Jared's answers.  He caught everyone's attention when he explained this was to heal Jeff's relationship with his son's, and that then he could begin to heal with Louise.  It also meant that Tyler could begin healing as well.  The two younger brothers were bursting with enthusiasm at the suggestion, which really caught Louise off guard.  She hadn't expected them to be interested in something like this at all.  She asked the big question, "What if we say no?"  Jared smiled, and had replied, "Then it would be just my family healing this Saturday."  By the time the coffee was finished, they had agreed to go to the cabin for the ceremony.

It was late afternoon, and the rest of the brothers had been there most of the day.  Some were out water skiing, a couple were on jet skis, and Patrick, Adam, Mark, and Conner were out on the quads.  Jared and Liam were in the kitchen working on supper when a white SUV pulled into the yard.  After parking, four men got out and approached the house.  Jared went outside to meet them.

Jeff was looking around wide-eyed at the Quonset and the cabin. "I'm sorry Jared.  I wasn't expecting something like this out here."

"I get that a lot, Jeff." Jared closed his eyes for a moment, and when he opened them, he asked, "Did you see four quads along the grid roads as you were coming in?"

Jamie answered, "Yeah, covered in mud and looking like they were having a great time."

Jared smiled, "That's the little brothers and they will be here in a few moments."  Just as he spoke, a ski boat went by the end of the dock, dropping off the skier.  "The rest are out water skiing or on jet skis."

Jackie said "Fucking awesome!" before he even thought of his dad standing there.  He hung his head and said, "Sorry."

Jeff thought for a few seconds, "If it doesn't bother anyone here, it's ok.  This is a guys weekend.  Just don't swear in front of your mother when we get back."  Jared smiled his approval at Jeff's decision.

"I must warn you guys, we do swear around here.  But, it's at acceptable times and never aimed personally.  You will find that we have fast hands to slap the back of someone's head if they do something they need to think about."

Jamie moved into a ninja position and said, "Bring it on.  I'll be ready."

No one saw movement, but they all heard the slap on the back of his head.  "Son of ... Who did that!?"

Jett started laughing, "Dad, I told you these two are no problem for these guys to tune in."

Jared was smiling as Jamie was rubbing the back of his head, "Would you like another?"

"I got the point," the young man replied with a smile.

"I'll take you on a tour of the cabin area, then up to your bedrooms.  I have two rooms for you four, the three young men together and Jeff, your own room."

"I was really thinking we'd all be in sleeping bags on the floor somewhere," replied Jeff.

"The beds all have clean sheets, blankets and towels."

Jeff smiled, "This is roughing it?"

Jared smiled back at him, "In some ways.  Let's go for a tour." He took them to the Quonset, around the outside of the cabin, the hot tub, the boathouse, and back to the cabin.  Jared showed them around the cabin and their rooms.  They were all astonished at the building.  They heard the quads come back into the yard.

"Would you guys like to go quadding? Or out on the water?" Jared asked.

Jamie and Jackie both said, "Water skiing."

Jett said "Quadding."

Jared smiled, "How's the chest and the shoulder wound doing? You won't aggravate them will you?"

Jett looked at his feet, then into Jared's eyes.  "I have some of the best paramedics camping here with me.  I'm not scared."

"That wasn't the question Jett," asked Jared.

"Ok... I won't push it too far.  I do appreciate your concern."

Jeff looked at his sons, and said, "Could I sit on the end of the dock?"

Jared replied, "Of course you can.  That's where Liam and I will be going shortly."  He turned to the twins, "Get your suits on and there are beach towels in the bathroom to use."  Jared closed his eyes for a moment, when he opened his eyes he said, "They'll be waiting for you at the dock, so get a move on."

Jackie was the analytical one of the two boys.  "Jared, that's twice I've seen you close your eyes and then you know exactly where they are."

"Very good Jackie," replied Jared.  Jeff was about to say something when Jared cut him off, "That's very astute of you. Sometime this weekend you'll find out why."

Jackie was about to ask another question, but Jett cut him off. "Bro, just wait."  The younger brother looked at Jett before nodding his head.  The twins took off into their room.

Jared turned to Jett, "If you go out to the Quonset, they'll get you outfitted and set up with a quad." Jett took off down the hallway, the stairs and out the back door with a slam.

Jeff watched Jared for a reaction but saw nothing.

"Jeff, my brothers are harder on the floors, stairs, and the doors than your children ever could be.  Let it happen.  What you heard was happiness."

"You're right.  I guess I worry about rules, impressions, and doing things right."

The twins went shooting by Jared and Jeff standing in the hallway.  The heavy footsteps down the hallway, the stairs and the front door slamming caused Jeff to smile.  "You're right.  That is happiness."

Let's go downstairs to get Liam.  Would you like tea, coffee, a glass of wine or something to take out to the dock?"

As they were going down the stairs Jeff replied, "A glass of wine would be wonderful."  Jared noticed Jeff's face had pain on it as they were walking.  Unless he was totally wrong, Jeff was having problems with his artificial leg or stump.

The three men sat on the Muskoka Chairs at the end of the dock enjoying the sunshine.  Jeff was watching his son's mix with people they had only seen once, if at all, and act as if they were long-lost friends. While watching his sons, Jeff suddenly realized he had missed so much of them growing up.

He was startled when Liam spoke, "Jeff, you didn't miss it.  Your eyes were open, but they didn't see."

 Jeff was stunned at the words from Liam.  "How do you know..."

"We know there's been trouble.  That's not a secret.  But, you just looked at your sons with a look that many fathers have had when they realized they should've done things differently, and been with them more."

Jeff didn't even know what to say, but finally said, "You both have a knack of being able to understand what is going on through my mind as I think it."

Jared sat his glass down, "There are many things you will learn this weekend. It's why you are here, so you and your boys may begin to walk down the path as a family again."

"Are you psychologists?"

Liam replied, "No, we're not.  We just know."

Jeff's thought was broken when Jamie went by on one ski, trying to splash them as they sat there.

Before Jeff could say anything, Jared said, "If they do something which makes us mad or offends us, we will deal with it.  Please, relax and enjoy watching them."

Jeff watched for a few moments, "It's amazing really.  Those two little guys out there were babies I held in my arms at one time. I'm not sure when they grew up to 6', a little bit of hair on their chest, and such good looking kids.  This is the first time I've seen them in a bathing suit for years."

Both Jared and Liam took a sip of their wine, not replying to Jeff's statement.

Jeff continued finally, "Not long before they're gone to university or off to work, even married.  They don't have long left in the family house."

"Perhaps this is the weekend you can sit with them as their dad, and ask them about their futures," Liam suggested.

Jared jumped in with, "Grasp what you have now.  Something for you to consider is that the tribe's people always hunted or collected grains for the future of their family, not the past.  You can't feed the past, but you will solve hunger for the future."

Jeff took a long, thoughtful sip of his wine.  "You two are a lot smarter than what you should be at your ages."

Liam leaned forward to look at Jared, "See, I told you I'm smart."  Then he stuck his tongue out at his husband.  Jared stood up, grabbed Liam and tossed him into the lake.

"That's how you deal with people who think they are smart."

Liam jumped out of the water, ran at Jared full speed, grabbing him as he went over the end of the dock.  Jared and Liam swam to the boathouse, stripped down to their underwear, put on life preservers, and jumped on the last jet ski together.  Jeff watched them head out to be with the rest of the guys.

He sat there watching everything the group was doing on the water.  Smelling the fresh air, feeling the humidity and gentle breeze on his skin, he began to relax.  Jeff didn't even realize he had actually dozed off in the chair until the sound of the boats nearby woke him up.  He watched as the ski boat gently came alongside the dock, and his sons jumped out to help hold the ropes for tying it in place.  The jet skis went into the boathouse and cut their motors.  Jamie and Jackie were both talking to Jeff as if they were high on sugar.  Jared came out of the boathouse, and up on to the dock.

"Alright, we need to get supper going.  Everyone up to the house to get changed," barked Jared.

Jesse put his arm around Zane, "If we walk slow, maybe the jobs will all be handed out by the time we get there."

Troy used his towel as a rat tail, snapping it at Jesse's ass.  He got it good causing Jesse to screech and jump up and down while holding his ass.  Tyler had his towel ready to snap at Liam, getting him on the right buttock.  Jared got Jamie on the left buttock.  The towel fight was on as they moved up the lawn to the cabin.  Jeff was laughing at the hijinks and was surprised when Jamie nailed Jackie good on the ass.  Jackie pulled the back of his suit down to look at the mark (which even Jeff could see a dozen feet away) before he attacked his twin brother.

They all disappeared into the house, and Jeff heard what sounded like a herd of buffalo going up the stairs.  Upstairs, Zane showed the boys where to hang their towels and bathing suits to dry.  Neither hesitated, pulling them off and putting them on the rack to dry.  They walked down the hallway to their room naked, giving Zane the impression they weren't all that uncomfortable being nude.

Jeff was sitting at the kitchen table, not sure what to do to help get dinner ready until Jared came back.  The back door flew open and five young men including Jett ran through the kitchen naked.  Jeff just sat stunned that his son would do that.

Jared called out, "Jett, how's the shoulder wound?  Need a new dressing after the shower?"

Jett turned around and walked towards Jared, "That would be great.  I'd appreciate it."

"I'll be ready and take a look at it when you come back downstairs."

Jett smiled at him, turned and ran upstairs.

Jeff was shaking his head, "I can't believe he's so comfortable being naked around everyone."

Troy smirked, "To be honest Jeff, we don't normally wear this much clothing around here unless we're cutting firewood, on the quads or it's cold.  We are very comfortable with our bodies, and do the naturalist thing a lot."

Jeff was surprised, "You're nudists?"

It was Jared who replied, "Not really.  It's just the way we are, as it was the beginning.  We wear our loin clothes a lot as well, a traditional garment which keeps things in place but doesn't overheat us with layers of cloth."

Zane smiled, "Even Adam and Eve didn't have clothing until God made clothes from the skins of animals, but not to protect them.  The clothes were made to prevent indecent exposure or being dressed as an incentive to sin.  People who dress like that are responsible for their own sins but also for those that others may commit sin because of them."

Jared chuckled, "That is a hell of a topic for us to debate some evening around the supper table or at the campfire."

Jeff was surprised, "You guys discuss things like that?"

"We discuss many things as a family," Jared replied.  "We respect and encourage everyone to voice their opinion even when it's contrary to anyone else.  Everyone has a voice and an opinion.  But to be honest, when a person is naked and in a debate, there is nothing to hide behind.  The body language speaks as honestly as the voice."

"Jeff, here's something for you to think about" Liam added.  "A Muslim, a Jew, a Christian, an Atheist and a gay guy all go into a coffee shop.  They talk, laugh, drink coffee and become good friends.  It's what happens when you're not an asshole."

Jeff chuckled while he shook his head.  "You guys are a hell of a lot more complicated than I gave you credit for.  This is all blowing my mind."

Jared smiled as he said, "Good, it's working."

Jeff watched as everyone came to the kitchen, each working on something to help make supper.  He was amazed by how they worked together to get things rolling.  He was shocked when they began to include him in their conversation as they prepared the vegetables, salad, potatoes, and fresh biscuits.  When the little brothers came down, they headed to the cupboards and began setting the big kitchen table with dishes.  When Jett, Jamie and Jackie came down, Patrick took them outside to first light the BBQ, and then to set for a fire in the fire pit near the beach.  An hour later, they were all seated around the table.  Jeff was astounded at all the food prepared to be eaten.  When it was all ready, Jared said a prayer: 

"We thank Great Spirit for the resources that made this food possible; we thank the Earth Mother for producing it, and we thank all those who laboured to bring it to us. May the wholesomeness of the food before us, bring out the wholeness of the Spirit within us."

It didn't take long before everyone had heaping platefuls of food.

"Jared, you guys must do this a lot, I mean have suppers like this.  I watched everyone working together to get things done," said Jeff.

"I know you find it hard to believe, but we're a family of brothers like you are a family with your children.  We just get things done when they need to be done," replied Jared.

"Can I ask what you guys all do for a living?" asked Jeff.  "I mean I know Tyler is a police officer..."

"Sorry, I'm a Constable.  I work for a living unlike an Officer," Tyler corrected him, with a smirk on his face.

Troy laughed, "You haven't got the balls to say that to John."

"Damn straight I don't," Tyler replied, causing everyone to laugh.

"I'm a paramedic," Troy said.

"Me too," added Conner.  "Just graduated from the college and working now."

"I'm at university studying business," Mark said.

"I'm just graduating from school with Jett," Patrick said.  "I'm going off to helicopter pilot school in the fall."  It was the first time it had been said as a fact.  His brothers all congratulated him.

"I'm the director of the LGBTQ2 outreach centre and food bank," said Zane before he stuffed a biscuit into his mouth.

Jeff looked puzzled, "LGBTQ2?"

"Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transexual Queer Two-Spirit.  We call it the Canaan Breck Centre after a young man that was kicked and knifed to death for being gay."

Jeff froze for a few seconds, "So, you're..."

"It's not a dirty word Jeff.  I'm gay."

Jeff didn't know what to say for a moment.  "I'm sorry Zane.  I've never actually talked to a gay person before." He put his fork down onto the plate, "Fuck, that didn't come out right either."

"Jeff, you're among friends here.  There is nothing to worry about.  The learning and healing are beginning," explained Zane.

"I apologize to everyone."

It was Jared who spoke this time, "No offence was taken, Jeff.  As I said to you earlier, we'll let you know if something needs to be said."

Jeff looked at Jesse.  "So, I'm a lawyer, and now in the role of a Provincial Court Judge.  I am also Zane's boyfriend."

Patrick gave Adam the elbow to encourage him, "Hi Jeff, I'm a Constable as well.  Just recently graduated from the academy, and I'm Patrick's boyfriend."

"So is everyone here gay?" asked Jeff.  Jett held his breath while waiting for the answer.

It was Conner who spoke this time.  "We're a family of brothers who basically came together after our families disowned us for being gay.  My father almost killed me, then threw me into the street a bloody mess after he beat me senseless.  I got off lucky, he murdered my mom and brother.  I'm alive today because of all these men helping me, especially Jared and Liam."

Troy spoke next, "We could all tell you stories of our past and I guarantee they would make you sick to hear them.  But that's not why we're here.  We're here to help people."

Mark jumped in, "We are a family who just helps people.  We don't care about their faith, colour, ancestry, or orientation.  We help them all."

"Jeff, the only three people at this table who have a father or can call someone dad is your boys," Tyler said calmly.  "Out of our family, two had good relations with their father.  The rest of us either don't have a dad or we have a dad who won't even acknowledge us."

"Dad," Jett said slowly.  "Everyone here is gay except you and the twins." He took a deep breath, "Knowing that now Dad, does that change your opinion from what you were thinking about them before you found out they were gay?"

Jeff thought for a moment before he said, "I really want to say this right.  I'm sorry for my reaction.  I have a lot to learn and I appreciate you guys helping us."

It was Conner who summarized it best.  "Jeff, Jett, you two have the opportunity none of us ever had with our dads.  It didn't go well between you two the day Jett left the house.  Everything which has happened since that day has now worked out to give you both the opportunity to sort it out, heal, and plan for the future together.  It's a very important opportunity for you both to utilize."

Liam put his arm over Conner's shoulder to pull him close.  "Conner, you and the Fox do us proud."  The young man smiled.

Jeff looked at Jared, "This is the best conversation I've had with my son in years.  Thank you." Jett stood, quickly embracing his dad.  After they separated, Jeff said in amazement, "So you guys are all professionals in your working lives."

Tyler and Liam quickly stuck green beans under their top lips leaving them hanging down like tusks as they said, "Yup, we are."

Jeff didn't know what to say to the two of them.  He looked at his three kids, and they were doing the same thing.  Jeff thought, 'What the hell', and did it too.

The meal was a typical meal at the cabin.  The young men told stories, jokes, and poked fun at each other.  They were so charismatic that the twins and Jett were drawn in as well.  Jeff was really beginning to feel relaxed with these men.

When the supper was finished, everyone contributed to the cleanup; finishing it a very short time period.  During that time, Jeff was looking at a series of pictures on the walls. The pictures were all of the cabin from the beginning, including many more recent pictures of the brothers together. There was one picture of two young men in it which stood out to Jeff.  It was a picture of a police officer and a firefighter, both in dress uniforms, sitting together and holding hands.

Jeff didn't hear Jared come behind him as he was looking at the picture.  "That's our brothers Darren and Josh."

"Are they working this weekend?"

"No.  Do you remember last year when a gunman in the park near the college shot and killed two people during his rampage?"

Jeff thought for a moment before replying, "Yes, I do remember.  Two people were killed."

Jared nodded.  Jeff noticed Jared's eyes were watering as he replied, "The men in the picture you were looking at are the ones that were killed.  Although we miss them, they do manage to drop in on us now and then to let us know they're ok."

Jeff didn't know what to say in reply to Jared's comment.  "Do you mean like that crazy medium woman with the long fingernails from Long Island? They send you messages through someone?"

"Yes, sort of."

"You guys really are as tight as a family, aren't you?"

"In many ways, we are tighter than a modern family.  We stand together, don't hide anything from each other, never let disagreements affect our group, respect each other and love unconditionally."

"If you had told me that when I first met you, I would've called bullshit.  I've seen it, and I believe you."

They all moved out onto the deck to finish their tea or drink.  The twins followed the younger brothers down to the fire pit to stoke it up with wood.

Jeff had sat in one of the big Muskoka chairs on the deck.  His limp and pained expression on his face as he had walked was more noticeable as he came back onto the deck.  Jared stood in front of Jeff.  "I see your walking in pain.  Can I do something to help?"

"It's just sore.  I don't know what you can do to help me.  I go to see the doctor next week about the open wound on the stump."

Jared knelt in front of him.  "Would you feel comfortable enough to show me please."

Jeff thought for a couple of moments before he took off the artificial leg as well as the sock over the stump.  Jared reached out and lifted Jeff's knee slightly so he could see it better.  There was an open sore which must have been causing Jeff a lot of pain when walking on top of all the swelling, bruising and discolouration.

"Other than to help me clean it up, there isn't much to be done."

Jett stood next to his dad.  "Dad, I told you guys are a very special group of people.  I suspect you are about to see how special."

"Jett, I know they are special, but... holy shit." Jeff looked at Jared's pure white eyes.

Jared said aloud "Creator, guide my hands to do your work" as he firmly grasped Jeff's knee.

Jeff immediately felt the end of his stump warming up as the pain decreased.  Inside his leg, he had felt something on the bone which he thought was part of the problem with the sore.

"Jeff, you were right.  A splinter from the bone has broken free and has been caused the problem.  The splinter was damaging the muscle and almost forming a growth as solid as a cyst.  That's what was rubbing inside the prosthetic, and causing the sore."  Jared's attention was attracted by something else.  "Jeff, I'm looking at some damage, trying to understand it.  Do you jump a lot?"

Jet looked at his father, "Are you still jumping off the farm equipment and bins? You were told a while ago you could cause problems."

Jeff's face went blank as he processed what both Jared and Jett had asked.  He hung his head slightly while starting to answer slowly, "I guess the doctor was right.  He told me I needed a better prosthetic to be climbing on the equipment, ladders and grain bins.  I thought he was trying to upsell me a new, more expensive model."

Jared's eyes squinted as he travelled through the leg bones to determine what was happening.  Finally, he saw the problem.  "Jeff, that splinter is just the symptom of what's going on.  The tibia and fibula had been resected back, nicely cut and smoothed by the surgeon.  The skin edges nicely cut to create a flap over the stump wound.  I suspect it did really well for many years until you pushed it too far with an unsuitable prosthetic for the task.  There is damage which includes the tib/fib actually showing some splintering up towards the knee."

Jeff was not sure what to believe, "How do you know?"

Jared smiled, "Jeff, you and Jett firmly grasp my arm; but make sure it is skin-to-skin contact.  I'll show you what I see."

Jeff started to say 'huh' but Jett cut him off.  "For God's sake Dad, just fucking do it.  Don't argue with everyone so much."

It startled his father when Jett spoke to him like that, but he accepted it.  A month ago, Jeff probably would've exploded in a fit of anger.  He reached out, grasping Jared's arm, Jett did the same except higher up on Jared's arm.

"Close your eyes, both of you" Jared directed.  A moment later both men gasped at what they saw in their minds.  While Jett was saying "awesome", his father said, "What the hell..."

"You are seeing what I see through my eyes as I heal injuries." The splintered areas in Jeff's leg began to blend together, the cracks vanishing as they healed.  Jared then focused on rebuilding the muscle and skin on the sides and bottom of the stump. They watched as muscle tissue grew, growing thicker, weaving itself between the layers of tissue.  The skin sore faded away to healthy skin as well.

The warmth disappeared, as did Jared's white eyes. "Your stump has now been returned to the condition it was after healing from the initial surgery.  It's totally healed, and ready for you to look after it properly this time."

Jett grasped his dad's shoulder "I told you they were special.  They helped me in the hospital too, healing some of the damage."

"Are you God?" asked Jeff fearfully.

"No.  We're not gods, just messengers here to help people.  Like I told you at the hospital the night we met at Jett's bedside, it's what we do," replied Jared.

Jeff looked at his stump and was amazed to see it was totally healed.  He looked up at Jared, "Thank you.  From all my heart, thank you.  What do you want from me?"

"Nothing," Jared replied.  "Just be the best person and father you can be.  That's all."

Jeff looked at him with suspicion, "That's all?"

Jared smiled, "That's all. Everyone has a path to walk in life, and you have your family walking beside yours.  You must do your best so they learn, and in turn teach their children to do their best."

"I'm beginning to understand why Jett respects you guys so much," Jeff replied. "You give honest answers with no hidden agenda."

Jett smiled, "Dad, you're finally catching on."


End of Chapter Thirty-Seven



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