3 ½ hours later:
Matt & Jeff gave their Dad a hug before boarding the plane to New Orleans.
"Bye Dad, we’ll call you when we get there all right?" Matt said.
Mr. Hardy nodded, "Take good care of them Amy."
She gave him a quick hug good-bye, "You know I will Mr. Hardy," she said with a smile.
"We gotta go," Jeff said, hefting his duffel bag over his shoulder. "Love ya Dad," Jeff tossed over his shoulder as they disappeared down the walkway.
It was a 2 hour flight from Cameron to New Orleans, but Matt and Jeff brought plenty to keep them occupied. Amy looked over at them from across the aisle as they settled in their seats. She watched as Matt pulled out a stack of about 10 wrestling magazines from his backpack.
Amy’s eyes widened, "You brought all that just for a 2 hr. flight? Don’t you like to read a "People magazine" now and then?"
Matt shook his head, "Nope, I’m not really into the Hollywood scene."
"I mean, there is such a thing as conversation," she pointed out, clearly annoyed.
As Matt handed half of his magazine stack to Jeff, he shook his head. "Not right now, but if you would like to talk, we’re perfectly willing to listen," Matt said innocently. Amy looked at him, her mouth hanging open, speechless. She turned around abruptly in her seat, and picked up the novel she’d been working on.
An hour into the flight her airplane roomie decided to have one too many drinks and started hitting on her, "Hey sweet thing, how’s about you and I paint the town when this here big bird lands?" he said, as he lazily ran his hand up and down her arm.
She jerked her arm away. "How about keeping your hands to yourself mister," she said angrily. Amy looked across the aisle over at Matt and Jeff, *darn, it looked as if they were fast asleep.*
"Aw, but they’d rather be touching you," he slurred. She could smell his breath, which reeked of alcohol. His hand reached out to encircle her slim wrist, but didn’t quite make it.
A larger, stronger hand tightly gripped the drunk guy’s wrist. "I believe she told you to leave her alone," the person said icily. Amy looked up in surprise, only to see the enraged face of Matt Hardy.
"Unhand me!" the stranger sputtered.
Matt shook his head, his eyes glinting, he whispered, "I’m going to let your wrist go, and I swear, if you touch her again, I’m going to break it, understand?" The guy nodded, swallowing profusely. "Good, now why don’t you go find somewhere else to sit," he said practically shoving him out of his seat.
Jeff had been watching the whole time and grinned, breathing a sigh of relief. "You okay Amy?" Jeff asked. She nodded and gave him a small smile.
Matt sat down in the window seat next to Amy. "Thought we were asleep huh?" he said with a grin. "Now before you say anything, let me explain. I was awake and listening, waiting to see if you needed any help. You seemed to be doing okay on your own. Jeff and I thought you would want to handle it by yourself anyway, until he didn’t take no for an answer." Matt abruptly turned his head to face straight ahead. "Jeff and I felt he needed a little friendly persuasion," Matt said lightly, but Amy could see his jaw muscle tighten as he said it.
She had an irresistible urge to stroke his jawbone. Instead, she settled for door #2. She just looked at him in awe, "Thanks," she said softly.
He turned to her in surprise, concern etched on his face, "Amy, are you sure your okay? He didn’t hurt you did he?"
"I’m fine really. I appreciate your coming to my rescue," she said almost shyly.
He stared at her, his mouth gaping open. *Man, I thought she was going to be really ticked at me for helping her-she tends to be really stubborn much of the time. *
"Matt?" Amy waved her hand in front of his face. "You okay?"
"Huh?" he shook his head.
"Thought you were zoning on me for a second," she said with a smile.
Almost as if reading his thoughts, Amy said, "Look, I know I tend to be stubborn sometimes but…" her voice trailed off.
Matt was listening to her intently, "Go on," he said softly.
Amy waved her hand nonchalantly. "No, no, it’s okay, I’m finished."
Matt let out a breath he didn’t realize he’d been holding. *I know that she needs, no wants to say more. He sighed. *She’ll talk about it when she’s good and ready. *It concerned him that she was holding things inside. When she was in the ring she needed to have her mind totally focused. He didn’t want her getting hurt in the ring due to outside problems. "Okay, if you’re sure," he said quietly. He stood up, but Amy tugged on the sleeve of his red checked, flannel shirt.
"Hey, toss me one of your magazines, would ya?" she said with a smile.
Matt grinned, "Hand me a magazine, would ya Jeff?" Jeff grinned as Amy spent the rest of the flight reading wrestling magazines.