On FM Scout you can chat about Football Manager in real time since 2011. Here are 10 reasons to join!

[FM15] Raising Cain

The story of a failed young manager's attempt to resurrect his career ... and his life.
Started on 1 September 2015 by tenthreeleader
Latest Reply on 12 August 2016 by zappo137
This run-in could make or break your season, hopefully you come out on top!
Thanks, gents ... things are starting to heat up again!


They met on the Thursday night with the team traveling the next day. It would be one of the longest trips of the season – five and a half hours by coach to just shy of Liverpool and the coast – and Kyle wasn’t looking forward to the journey.

He was, however, looking forward to dinner. Jenna was with Miles, and for a change Kyle had nothing to say about that since he had his own plans.

He had noticed a marked change in his daughter over the preceding few weeks, and it made him sad. You could say a lot of things about Kyle Cain, but one of the things you couldn’t say about him was that he was an inattentive father.

He loved his daughter deeply, and like any father watching his baby girl grow up, parts of that process were hard to watch. The hardest part was watching her give attention to a male who wasn’t him.

Yet that night, it didn’t matter so much. And in a way, that was good for him.

He bade his daughter good evening and, for a change, she didn’t remonstrate with him for seeing Allison. She had realized that Allison was good for her father in her way, so the two of them had had sort of a rapprochement on that issue.

She did, however, text Stacy to let her know that her father was out with another woman. Stacy didn’t react well to that – but then since Boyd was curled up next to her on the couch at that moment, it wasn’t like she could say anything.

It was a sort of Mexican standoff, if you’d pardon the expression, since all three of them had issues that someone else in the group didn’t like.

But as Kyle drove to Allison’s flat to pick up his friend, none of that really mattered. He was doing better. That mattered.

It was a warm early spring evening, and she appeared on cue and on schedule, wearing a white blouse and blue jeans which flattered those parts of her that Kyle didn’t want to admit he looked at. She climbed into his Vauxhall Adam S and grinned at him.

“Hi,” she said, hugging him across the bucket seats of the car. “These things get in the way.”

“You mean the seats.” Kyle was thinking of other things.

“Yes, you perv, I mean the seats,” Allison laughed. “Let’s go!”

So, off they went. She chose the Swan and Castle, which was fast becoming a spot of theirs, and before long they were in a corner booth enjoying a quiet dinner.

And it was wonderful. They talked. They laughed at silly things, they laughed at funny things, and they laughed at each other. They never touched, they never kissed, they never did anything untoward. It was two friends having dinner.

And as they finished, Kyle looked up to see Jack Churchill sitting at the bar looking at them. Their eyes met, and the reporter raised his glass in toast.

# # #
Ha you know how to make my comments look foolish...
Reporters everywhere :))
Stupid reporters.....:D

“Hello, Kyle,” Jack said, sauntering to their table. There were few things sadder, and in some cases few things more typical, than a reporter drinking alone.

“Mr. Churchill,” Kyle said, knowing what was about to happen to him. This wasn’t going to be good, and Allison’s face was as white as a sheet.

“Having a good time, any road,” Churchill said, evidently at least half in the bag and presumably a lot farther along than that. “You do have good taste in companions, Kyle.”

The manager saw red as he looked up at the reporter, who would never have seen it coming if Kyle had hit him in the face. He was in no shape either to drive or to converse, and Kyle knew it.

“I’m not your enemy, Kyle,” Churchill said. “I’m just looking for a storrrrry.” The way he said it, drawing out the word due to alcohol, made Kyle both nervous and angry at the same time.

“Excuse me, I’m interrupting,” the reporter slurred, finally getting around to noticing Allison’s beauty. “Pardon me, miss ….”

Churchill’s voice rose at the end of his statement, searching for an answer. Kyle looked at Allison and ever so slightly shook his head from side to side.

Allison thought for a moment, and the color returned to her face. “No offense, Kyle, but it’s all right. Miss Austin. Allison Austin, age 34, Oxford. I am Mr. Cain’s friend. Are we quite clear on that?”

“Oh, of course, Miss Austin,” Churchill said, nodding emphatically and perhaps getting a head rush because of it.

“Because if you aren’t quite clear on that, Mr. Churchill, I’ll remind you that there are still defamation laws in this country.” Her blue eyes blazing, Allison closed in.

“Mr. Cain needs a friend, in part because of the hurt you caused him. Now, if you know what’s good for you, you’ll go back to the bar and ask the barkeep to hire you a cab home.”

Churchill looked at Allison, smoothing his thinning hair as he did. Discretion was the better part of valor.

“A pleasure, I’m sure,” he said by way of taking his leave. He left the restaurant, leaving his glass on the bar as he did.

Kyle looked at Allison and got almost the same look in return that she had given Churchill.

“Hey, what did I do?” he asked.

“You didn’t do anything,” she replied. “But it really annoys me that I had to do that just now. I know why you didn’t want me to talk to him, but honestly, how are we going to get you better treatment from him unless we tell him the truth? Otherwise he’ll just guess.”

“Or he’ll pay someone,” Kyle mused. He stared into his drink, wondering when he was ever going to get a break.

Indiscretion is the gift that keeps on giving, and right at that moment he was kicking himself for it.

But at the same time, Kyle had a revelation. If he hadn’t messed up, if he hadn’t stepped out, then Stacy would be with him, and he wouldn’t be sitting across a table from Allison Austin.

Fate. Sometimes, it’s so ... fateful.

“I know, but you can pay someone to say just about anything these days,” Allison said glumly. She took a sip from her glass, enjoying some of the last of her pint of ale. Kyle always did like women who looked good holding a pint.

“So, Allison, I do wonder why you are here,” Kyle said, trying his best to concentrate on her eyes.

“If you haven’t figured that out by now, I can’t help you,” she responded, a wry smile turning up one corner of her delicate mouth. “I’m waiting my turn.”

That was pretty plain, and Kyle’s eyes got very large in response. He was still trying to figure out what the hell he was going to do about Stacy, who sometimes seemed to want a reconciliation and other times wanted his head on a spike, and here was a woman every bit as attractive as Charlotte had ever been coming right out and telling him she wanted to be next.

Kyle couldn’t help but smile, but knew he had to be careful.

“We need to have a serious conversation when I get back from Birkenhead,” Kyle said. “None of this restaurant stuff. I mean a real conversation, alone. Just the two of us.”

“I get your point,” she replied. “And I know there’s a long way to go before anything like that could even be considered. You’re married. I understand that. I was married until recently myself and I know that sometimes you have to play the long game. But understand, Kyle, I’m not going anywhere unless you tell me to.”

Kyle was very glad that Churchill had left the bar when Allison spoke those words, because they were real trouble from just about every standpoint Kyle could imagine. Yet, he wasn’t fighting them.

They talked for awhile longer until it was time for him to take her home. The coach was leaving early in the morning to get the squad to Birkenhead in time for lunch and training at a local school, and he had to get some sleep.

They drove in silence, Kyle’s hands on the steering wheel and Allison’s hands in her lap. They had some thinking to do, and they chose to do it silently.

He stopped the car outside the door to Allison’s flat, and she gave him a smile.

“Thank you for a great evening, Kyle,” she said. “Have a safe trip.” Their eyes met, and locked.

Their goodnight kiss – their first – was soft, special and deep.
# # #
Awwww cauteeeee!
2016-05-03 01:47#230601 Griffo : Awwww cauteeeee!
Kyle was furious with himself all the way home.

He couldn’t decide why he was angry – for kissing Allison, or for not kissing her enough.

He had long suspected that her friendship was really carrying a torch, but he wasn’t at all expecting the liplock he got as they said goodnight. That said, he did like her a lot and the wrong side of his nature wanted to explore that emotion.

He then thought about Stacy all the way back to his apartment, and then he had to wait two hours for Jenna to arrive home at midnight. He was not in a good mood as the minute hand swept twice around the face of his wall clock.

He lay in bed while waiting for his daughter to get home, with Miles not having training the next day with the end of the youth season having just arrived.

He thought about Allison, he thought about Stacy, he thought about having been so wrong with Charlotte ... and how he had just repeated the mistake he had sworn up and down he would never make again.

He liked Allison a lot. He cared for her. She had cared for him, and it was obvious she was trying very hard not to interfere in the decision Kyle had to make.

He stared at the ceiling, counting the dots in the tile by the light of the full moon. As he reached eight hundred, the door opened and Jenna walked in, tossing her light jacket over a living room chair.

“Dad?” she called. “You awake?”

“I’m in here,” Kyle called. “Did you have fun?”

“Oh, yeah,” she laughed. “We went to a movie with some of Miles’ mates. Real nice time. Furious 7.”

“Highbrow stuff,” Kyle chuckled. That was the kind of movie he could be expected to enjoy, not his teenage daughter.

“It’s Vin Diesel, dad,” Jenna said, entering the master bedroom and leaning against the doorframe. “You gotta know he’s a hunk of man.”

This was the same Jenna who wouldn’t so much as looked at a fashion mag even a few short months ago. She had changed. Quite a bit, in fact.

“Now, how about you?” she asked. “Have a good time with Allison?”

“Actually, yes,” Kyle sighed. “She’s a good friend to me and I really do need to speak with your mother to find out her plans.”

“Why? Don’t you have your own life to lead like you said?”

“I do, but really, you know she has said she might want to come home. It’s really time for an answer from her. What has she told you?”

“The same,” Jenna said. “And you know I’d really rather have my parents together, preferably happy.”

“But you have your own life to lead,” Kyle said, now sitting up in bed. “You won’t be here forever, and if you and Miles stay together, who knows where you’ll go? Why is your mother being here so important to you if you aren’t going to be here?”

“Because I want to remember the two of you the way you were when I was small,” she said. “You were happy before that woman got to you. Then it was hell. I cried a lot, you know.”

“I know.” Kyle looked at her sullenly. “I know.”

“And I can see what Allison wants,” Jenna continued, reading her father’s mind – and his friend’s – like a book.

“I haven’t filed papers because I thought there was hope,” Kyle said. “But really, the only person who can answer that question for certain is your mother. She is in control of the situation. And since you are in contact with her a lot more than I in recent weeks, I’d be grateful if you’d ask her.”

“I’d be more grateful if you would ask her,” Jenna said. “Pick up the phone and call.”
# # #
Well.. this phone call should hopefully see some matters sorted!
It might, at that ....

18 April 2015 – Tranmere Rovers (19-13-11, 7th place) v Oxford United (19-10-14, 8th place)
Sky Bet League Two Match Day # 44 – Prenton Park, Birkenhead
Referee: Martin Atkinson

There was plenty of food for thought on the trip, but from the moment the coach left Oxford Kyle was as close to one hundred percent committed to his team as he could have been.

This was the match upon which the entire season would hinge.

Friday’s training really hadn’t been much, but Kyle wanted to see focus and he had gotten what he wanted.

The eighteen by this point was virtually cast in stone, though, and that was a good thing. The players knew what was expected of them and with the club playing a vitally important game, the focus was excellent both at the Friday training session and at the hotel on Saturday morning.

Kyle wanted a slightly more mobile back line for Tranmere so he made two changes there; Bevans for Grimshaw and Skarz for Potts – two Oxford players for two loanees. Those were the only two changes from Northampton, though, as Kyle knew enough not to mess too much with a good thing when he had one going.

There was also very little to say before the match. It wasn’t the time for heroic speeches like you see in the movies. It was the time for the players to simply think about how they would get on with the job. Focus had been excellent and Kyle dared not mess with it.

That was a lesson learned from Torquay, where he had tried very hard to add motivation to players who were already playing for the right to stay up and avoid wage cuts. That was motivation enough for some players, but not for enough. Now, he had learned his lesson – or, at least he thought he had.

His team talk was short.

“You know what to do. It’s out there for you. You’ve worked hard to have just this opportunity. What will you do to make all your work worth it? Now, get it done.”

There was a distinct big-match atmosphere in the place, even if it was the fourth tier, when Oxford kicked off to start the match. Hardly a word had been exchanged between Kyle and Micky Adams before the match – in a match of that importance, it simply wasn’t on to have banter between the managers.

In five minutes, Kyle’s men had gained the ascendancy, earning the first corner of the match on a bursting run by the relatively fresh MacDonald, his cross headed behind by defender Josh Thompson. Nothing came of the set piece but Oxford looked bright and that was necessary.

Ssewankambo tried his luck with an audacious half-volley from a square ball by Bevans moments later, only to see it flash wide of Owain fon Williams’ left post. Again, intent.

Fon Williams took the goal kick and Bevans played it down with his head to the right, and right onto the run of Roberts, who strode forward. MacDonald was running even faster and the teenager saw him, sliding the ball onto the Scotsman’s run down the right flank.

At full speed, MacDonald cut to the middle, shifted to his left foot and beat fon Williams cleanly to put Oxford into the lead.

It was a dream start, and Adams reacted on the Tranmere bench by throwing up his hands in frustration while the Us dugout erupted in celebration. The away support was fairly small due to the length of the travel but those who showed up were plenty loud.

Kyle headed to the touchline, applauding the team hands over head in an effort to spur them on to greater heights. MacDonald, for his part, nearly earned his eleventh card of the season by upending Josh Thompson immediately after the restart, which also brought Kyle to the touchline to yell for his goal-scoring midfielder.

I need you in the match!” he yelled, hoping the winger would get the message. Thankfully, he toned down his play. Steve Jennings retaliated by crocking Maddison moments later, which sent MacDonald another kind of message.

With the teenage midfielder rolling in pain on the ground, MacDonald and Dunkley chested up to Jennings in defense of their teammate, which promoted Wright and Tranmere skipper Michael Ihiekwe to wade into the scrum and start pulling players away by the collars of their shirts.

It was a near flashpoint, and Atkinson, who to his credit didn’t want to start booking players until it was necessary, simply called the offenders to him for a group chat, which happened to take place within Kyle’s hearing.

“None of this,” Atkinson warned, “and I mean that. You’re going to hurt your teams and I’m going to hurt your wallets if this nonsense doesn’t stop.”

Meanwhile, Maddison limped to the touchline for treatment and after a few minutes was able to return to play. Ssewankambo then set a new tone, with a thundering and completely fair tackle on Duane Holmes, taking away the ball and perhaps his sense of innocence at the same time.

Jennison Myrie-Williams then came close on a set piece as the home team tried to find its form, but Ashdown had the angle covered and watched the ball sail over the bar.

Lee Molyneux did the same thing a few moments later, but Oxford was restricting Tranmere to shots from distance and the keeper again wasn’t troubled.

Things had quieted from the previous few minutes, and that was good for Oxford, since Tranmere seemed to have issues with emotion and getting into the match. Try as they might, they couldn’t put a shot on target and minute after minute passed with the home team looking nearly abject in possession.

Hoban struck in 27 minutes, as Oxford surged forward on the counter, but fon Williams made a really nice reflex save as Hoban and Roberts played a two-man game inside the Rovers penalty area. A second goal there would have been great, but Kyle had nothing to complain about as the remainder of the first half settled back into a tactical affair, a morass from Tranmere’s point of view.

Atkinson blew for halftime and Kyle was well satisfied.

Same as before,” he told his players. “It’s all there for you now. It’s going to come down to who wants it more. Time to decide, gentlemen.”

As the second half started, Bevans decided to show Kyle how much he wanted it, leaving Lee Molyneux in a heap just sixty seconds after the restart, the ball at the Oxford man’s feet when it was done. Molyneux needed treatment, but couldn’t continue and left after fifty-one minutes in favor of the aptly named Max Power, because Tranmere certainly needed some.

Myrie-Williams then put hearts into throats on the Oxford touchline by weaving past Dunkley and putting a low drive squarely off Ashdown’s right goalpost in 53 minutes, which kept the score 1-nil but which also made Dunkley examine his priorities at Wright’s insistence.

Power then connected on a free header past Ashdown. Kyle’s heart sank until he saw the far side official’s flag up for offside – meaning Oxford had dodged two bullets within three minutes.

But then, amazingly, Adams substituted for his substitute, pulling Power off the pitch after only six minutes of play in favor of the Canadian striker Iain Hume – in essence wasting one of his substitutions. Power left the park with a look of utter bewilderment on his face. He had barely broken a sweat and was being sent to the showers.

Tranmere got a corner just after Hume’s introduction and the inswinger fell deep into the Oxford six-yard box. Roberts, assigned to guard the far post, rose with forward Cole Stockton to head the ball – and the Oxford player won, heading nearly off the line for Skarz to clear Oxford’s lines.

That made three close calls, none of which had amounted to an official shot on target. Stockton then shook loose in the area on the hour mark – and he shot over, which made four.

“We’re living dangerously,” Kyle said to Fazackerley, and his deputy could only nod his assent. Kyle got the impression that if he could, his assistant might have closed his eyes.

The Us then gained a throw in the Tranmere area, with Skarz finding O’Dowda on the left, but the winger was forced to the touchline. He spun and played a ball back to Skarz, who found MacDonald lurking outside the area. The winger put the ball into the area to find Maddison on the right – and the loanee turned and rifled a shot off the crossbar and down into the net for his first goal for the club in 66 minutes.

Football is a grossly unfair game sometimes. Tranmere had dominated the first fifteen minutes of the half, and had nothing to show for it. Oxford had had one decent foray forward and scored. None of that mattered to Maddison, who had finally broken his duck in his thirty-first game for the club.

Jake Kirby led Tranmere back, winning a corner nearly straight from the kickoff, but Oxford countered and won a throw deep in the Rovers’ end. Skarz again took it, and O’Dowda was felled in the area without interest from Atkinson, the ball rolling back to the full back. Skarz dropped the ball back to MacDonald, and he saw that O’Dowda hadn’t given up on the play.

Regaining his feet, O’Dowda found space between the defenders in the right channel, took MacDonald’s pass and gave fon Williams no chance just three minutes after Maddison’s goal.

Oxford was home and dry in 69 minutes, three goals to the good on the road in a vital match.

The mood was near-euphoric on the Oxford bench. Hylton got some more exercise ten minutes from time and soon it was over.

The second half had been brilliant. Oxford had passed Tranmere on goal difference.

They were now in the playoff places.

Oxford United: Ashdown: Bevans, Dunkley, Wright (captain), Skarz, Ssewankambo (Whing 86), MacDonald (Mullins 86), Maddison, O’Dowda, Roberts (Hylton 76), Hoban. Unused subs: Clarke, Grimshaw, Meades, Potts.

Tranmere Rovers 0
Oxford United 3 (MacDonald 9, Maddison 66, O’Dowda 69)
H/T: 0-1
A – 5,134, Prenton Park, Birkenhead
Man of the Match: Alex MacDonald, Oxford (MR 9.1)
GUMP: Alex MacDonald

# # #
An emphatic victory over your play-off place rivals, congratulations!
Thanks, gents! And Griffo, that is an awesome meme :)
“I honestly do not know how I could be any more proud of this group of players,” Kyle exulted. “From where they were to where they have now gone, I can hardly say enough. They get the credit, they have done the work, they are a very happy bunch now and we’re going to have a very enjoyable coach ride home.”

With two matches left, Oxford was now in control of its own destiny. That was amazing news.

The Us had posted an 18-5-5 mark in all competitions since Kyle had arrived and had moved from 22nd place to seventh. The achievement was remarkable, and it might not have been finished with the Tranmere result.

“We have something to defend now,” Kyle noted. “The club has played brilliantly to get to this point, but we still have two matches left and if they don’t get won, we’re still staying home for the playoffs.”

“Could you even have imagined this, Kyle?” Churchill asked. Evidently he hadn’t remembered the night in the pub, since he was still speaking kindly to the manager.

“Everyone dreams of it,” Kyle said, trying to suppress a frown. “But if I’m honest, I don’t know that I’d have called this a playoff club when I got here. It’s been a great run, though, and it’s not over yet.”

He was asked, now by regional media, about the secret to Oxford’s success.

“They work. Damn, they work,” he said of his players. “They apply themselves and now their confidence is to the point where they aren’t scared of trying the killer ball, aren’t scared to switch play and make something happen, and they aren’t scared that if they make a mistake it’s going to beat them. There’s a lot to be happy about.”

“How much of that is down to you and your coaches?” A reporter who Kyle had never seen before but judging by his blow-dried appearance was probably connected to some television camera, was asking the question.

“All a manager can do is put his players in the best position to succeed,” Kyle said. “I’ve not seen a manager yet who could win anything by himself. The players have to believe, they have to push, they have to work, and they can’t quit or they get relegated. That’s what we had when I came here and now it’s different.”

“The players had quit?” The same reporter showed that he understood neither Oxford United nor Kyle’s response with his followup.

“No. I mean that if players at this level don’t play, they get to play at the next lower level if they don’t get released,” he responded, irritated at the question. “This club was in a bad state in November and I was fortunate to inherit a group of players who wanted to dig their way out of the hole they were in and make something of themselves.”

With that, it was back to a very happy group of players in the changing room.

Players were well into their post-match routines by then, with plunge pools taken, most of the team showered and the remainder replaying their heroics over refreshments of various kinds.

“Come on, lads, hurry along, we’ve got a long ride home ahead,” Kyle called. Reluctant to move on to the next phase of their day, the players nonetheless realized they had to get a move on.

“Can’t we just enjoy this?” MacDonald called out, to general laughter from the team.

“You should, you did well,” Kyle called back. “But if you want to see your wives and girlfriends sometime tonight, you’d better get on the coach, it’s a long drive for them to come pick you up!”

That moved the players along. Kyle had more thinking to do on the way home, and in his case it wasn’t about a wife or girlfriend. In his case, if he didn’t watch it, it was going to be about both, and the last time he had done that it hadn’t worked out well for him.

In London, Stacy sat watching Sky Sports, and the scores ran along the bottom of her television screen. She saw “Tranmere 0-3 Oxford: Us move into final League Two playoff spot” crawling along the bottom of the screen and she shrugged her shoulders.

“Maybe you aren’t such a failure after all, Kyle Cain,” she mused.

Boyd was down the pub with a few of his friends and so he didn’t see the result with her, but her phone message light came on as he texted moments later.

Your boy won,” Boyd had written. “But he didn’t win you.

Stacy leaned back in her chair and sighed. The baby was kicking again, and every time that happened, she thought about her life, and the life she was supposed to be having.

It hurt. The life, that is. Not the baby.

# # #
Oooooooo she wants him bacckkk, this meansss troubleee!!!!
In rowing, it was the be-all and end-all. Oxford v Cambridge. One of the world’s oldest and greatest sporting traditions.

But in football, not so much. Cambridge had nearly qualified for the first season of the Premier League after finishing fifth in the old Second Division before falling in the playoffs to Leicester in 1991-92, narrowly missing out on becoming the only club in the history of the English game to be promoted from the fourth tier to the top tier in successive seasons.

Now, though, the two communities who were not natural rivals on the football pitch had the opportunity to play for something real. The Cambridge Uniteds were mid-table; the Oxford Uniteds were shooting for something higher.

Kyle wanted to guard against letdown after the triumph in Birkenhead, but found that very difficult. Training was ragged on the Monday and Tuesday after the return trip to Oxfordshire – so bad, in fact, that he pulled the team off the training ground on the Tuesday afternoon and had them run laps.

He followed that running stint with a brief team meeting about the importance of focus. Nobody likes to run laps after playing 44 league games plus cup competitions, and Kyle well knew it.

“If you don’t want to run, keep your shoulders to the wheel,” Kyle barked as the players passed him on a third lap of the training pitch.

Wright, the captain, was the first to understand what Kyle was doing, and a quiet talk with a few of the worst offenders after training soon put things right.

But with Saturday’s match providing Oxford a chance to all but lock up a trip to the playoffs, there was still work to do and finally, on the Wednesday, the players kicked things back into gear.

It was just in time for Kyle, who was running out of patience.

The pressure was starting to get to him, too, since Eales informed him that the club had a ‘fan day’ promotion planned for the final home match and ticket sales had been comparatively brisk.

That would mean a win was important to keep Moore off his back as much as anything else. She would make some comment, some aside to show her disdain for the Oxford manager and if they lost, well then it would get pretty loud as the team would surely need a result in the last match of the season away to Newport County to assure a playoff position.

These were things that no other manager in England had to worry about, Kyle felt sure, but then his job depended on winning and if he didn’t win he shouldn’t keep his job anyway, he thought.

But the thought of giving one more twist of the knife to that woman was enough to keep him going, enough to keep him looking at video for that extra half hour every night, to get him not to hit the snooze button in the morning for five more minutes of rest.

That was the way she wanted it. Well, Kyle would set a personal standard that would shut her up.

Allison, for her part, was just as passionate about seeing the team succeed, as a lifelong fan. She put her feelings for Kyle aside that week, to allow him to concentrate just that little bit extra.

She was quiet to the point that Kyle actually asked her if anything was wrong, remembering back to their goodnight before leaving for Birkenhead. He cringed as he sent the text, wondering if she had had second thoughts.

“Just giving you space,” she had texted back. “Everything’s okay.”

It would have been easier if she had had second thoughts, Kyle mused. It would have made his life, and his decision, much simpler.

He had liked his moment with her quite a bit. He knew it was forbidden fruit, though, and that took a lot of the starch out of him. He also wondered what Stacy could be playing at.

And, if he was honest, he missed watching Stacy carry the child. He had really enjoyed her pregnancy with Jenna back in the day, and as an attentive father, had secretly wanted to be able to repeat those special days. The chance was there – and someone else was getting to watch it all.

That would have been much easier had Allison not entered the picture. The person who noticed the conflict was Vic, and that didn’t bode well at all.

Vic and Allison were besties, though, and so Kyle needn’t have worried about anything showing up in the Mail that would affect that friendship. Yet she was a fairly astute judge of people, and as such her quiet question after the Wednesday training session didn’t take Kyle by surprise.

They were walking to their cars, and the reporter had waited for the manager. That in itself wasn’t unusual – Vic often did that when she had time before deadline and needed clarification on a certain issue – but the questioning certainly was.

“Allison said you had a nice time the other night,” Vic said, and Kyle blanched.

“Oh, don’t worry that I’ll say anything,” she said. “I just want her to be happy. I consider you to be a pretty good guy, Kyle, and I think you’d be good for her because I know what you’ve been through in your life. She went through a lot of the same things. That’s why I introduced the two of you.”

“We did,” Kyle admitted. “She’s a good friend and for now it needs to stay that way.”

“I know you have decisions to make that are important for you and Jenna and even your wife and your unborn child,” Vic said. “Those are your decisions and I know Allison respects them as well as your right to make them. I just want to make sure everything’s okay. As a friend to her.”

“I think things are okay, she said they were,” Kyle said, trying not to sound defensive. “If I had it to do over again, I don’t think I’d have kissed her, because I’m sure she told you about that.”

“She did.”

“We got caught up in the moment and I think we showed some feelings,” Kyle said sheepishly. Suddenly, he was unable to look Vic in the eye.

# # #

You are reading "[FM15] Raising Cain".

FMS Chat

hey, just wanted to let you know that we have a fb style chat for our members. login or sign up to start chatting.