Tuesday, May 13, 2008

SKATE YOUR LANE;; THIRTYFOUR

THIRTYFOUR;;

Gametime came sooner than I'd expected;
I was sitting in my seat, second row, directly across from the Pens bench, so Sid
could see me cheering him on.
Let me tell you, those guys were playing their hearts out. But no matter how
hard they tried, Ottawa crushed every last one of their hopes and dreams of
holding Stanley's Cup this year.
As the Senator's fans all clapped and cheered, the dejected Penguins skated off
the ice after toughing it out for some traditional handshakes, and then I made
my way down to their locker room.

No one said a word when I entered; they were all dressing out in silence, and I
knew they were all thinking the same thing, and it wasn't exactly 'We did our
best.'
Evgeni was muttering to himself in Russian, as Mark Recchi and Gary Roberts
were trying to cheer up Jordan, Ryan, and Jocelyn, but they weren't falling for
it.
Sidney was already dressed in the suit he'd come in, his tie hanging loosely
from his neck. He sat off to the side, staring down at the ground.
I made my way through the mess of equipment and guys, then sat next to
Sidney, taking his hand in mine. I didn't say anything, because there was
nothing to be said. I was just following through on a promise.

At the hotel, I wanted to give Sid his space, so I told him I'd stay in Marc's
room. He didn't object; just nodded and gave me a hug goodnight.
"Marc!" I groaned once I was in his room.
"Aubrie!" he mimicked me.
"Sidney's not taking it so well." "Yeah.. none of us are."
"But at least you're talking!"
"Everyone's gotta handle it in their own way," he told me as I got into the other
bed next to his. "Darryl will talk when he's ready." "I know.. I just hate not being
able to do anything."
"You can.. All you have to do is be there when he needs you." I nodded at my
brother's advice, "Night Marc-Andre." "Sleep tight, Brie."

On the plane the next morning, everyone was clean shaven and ready to go
home. Again, Sidney was silent, so I merely held his hand as I talked with
Sergei and Ryan Whitney most of the time.

A week and a half passed since then, and I haven't heard from Sid once. I'd
called several times, but just gave up all together.
Casey, Jared, Brett as well as the rest of the team and I were at lunch after a
long, hard practice. I guess you could say I've been taking my frustrations out
on them, for the most part.
"Jesus CB, what's your problem?" Brett asked me from the seat across from
mine.
"Yeah, what's got your panties in a bunch?" Casey asked while sitting next to
him, and I glared.
"Guys, lay off," Jared tried to stop them.
"It's cool. Let them have their fun," I sighed a bit.
"Woah now. Seriously. What's going on? You're not defending yourself?!"
"Are you and Loverboy having problems?" Brett asked in a concerned voice;
something he rarely uses. I shook my head.
"Then tell us what's the matter," Jared prompted me.
"I haven't seen or heard anything from Sid since we got back from Ottawa...
He's not taking that loss very well, and I'm just really worried about him."
The three boys all gave me sympathetic looks. Of course, they wouldn't know
how to help. They're guys.
""You've called him, right?" Casey asked. "Yeah! But he wouldn't pick up, so I
just stopped after a week."
"See! You gave up. The CB we know would never give up so easily!
She'd be over there knocking his door down and insisting on answers!" Brett
told me.
"I know.. But I have to let him deal with this in his own way," I sighed.

"What if he needs you to help get past it, but he doesn't know it?" Jared
suggested. "That makes no sense, whatsoever."
"Think about it," Brett continued, "Loverboy could be trying everything to get
over it; sleeping, eating everything in sight, or punching the crap out of stuff,
but nothing seems to work." "And he needs his Aubrie there to work her magic
and talk him through it.. or to just be there and listen," Casey went on, and
Jared finished, "But he doesn't know he needs you. Not until he does something
really stupid."
I looked at these boys and smiled, "You guys are the greatest."
"We know," they chimed, then dug into their food.

That night I went home and thought about what the guys had said, and what I
should do about it.
I could let Sidney have his space, and wait for him to call me, or I could go over
to the Lemieux and let him know that I'm there. Jared, Casey and Brett had a
point though.. Sidney could be in all the pain in the world, and not know how to
help it.

The phone woke me up around one thirty in the morning, and I picked it up,
"Hello?"
"Aubrie, it's Mario." I immediately sat up, "Monsieur Lemieux, why are you.. it's
almost two am.."
"I haven't had a chance today, I've been swamped lately. But I think you should
come over."
"Now? Why?"

"I think Sid needs you. Just come over and I'll explain when you
get here." "Alright, I'll be there soon." I hung up and got out of bed, pulling on
one of Sid's sweatshirts that I'd borrowed over my tank, and slipped on a pair
of flip flops.
I got to Mario's around two fifteen, and he met me at the door.
"What's going on?" I asked once we were inside.
"We're worried about Sidney. He doesn't come out of his room.. or even that
side of the house, unless it's during the middle of the night for snacks. I saw
him an hour ago, and he's a mess.. I can tell. He hasn't slept in days, and I'll bet
you he's been watching nothing but those games from the series. Just go and
talk to him, please." I nodded, and went into his wing of the house.

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