“I'm so glad you're here, Biff,” Krystal and Aaron sat in the living area talking while Courtney unpacked hers and Aaron's things into their new room. Justin had gone out earlier to keep an eye on things and meet a few new potential members that Ryan and Ty had found.
“Me too,” Aaron smiled, “It's been a long time.”
“It has,” She nodded, “I've missed you.”
“Ditto,” He smiled, “How have things been for you otherwise? Are you happy? Justin seems like an okay guy.”
“I'm happier now than I have been for a very long time,” She bit her lip with a smile as she thought about Justin, “Justin really is amazing. He's so tough for the world, but when it comes to me, he doesn't hold back his love from me; no matter how silly he may think it is. You seem really happy with Courtney,” She held his gaze, “I don't know her all that well, but I'm looking forward to getting to know the love of my best friend's life.”
“She's just...perfect,” He smiled, “We've been married for 3 years and I still wake up every day thanking God for her. It's one of those situations where just when I think my heart can't possibly love her anymore than it already does, she does something amazing and makes me fall madly in love with her all over again. She's my soulmate and I'm truly blessed to have her.”
“I hope I have that some day,” She smiled, “I mean, the potential is definitely there with Justin. I'm just so skeptical of everything because I spent so long being unappreciated by Dee. It destroys a person's confidence in a sense.”
“Preaching to the choir here, Biff. Courtney spent so much time picking up the pieces after what Amanda did to me,” He shook his head at the memory, “But I'm thankful now. I wouldn't be this happy if I didn't have her in my life.”
“She understands why you want Amanda's head, right?” She studied him.
“Yeah,” Aaron nodded, “I eventually told her everything. Hell, she's ready to kill her herself.” They shared a laugh.
“I just hope that this plan goes off without a hitch,” She sighed, “I'm rusty. It's been a long time since I've planned a murder. Let alone carried through with one.”
“As long as they're willing to learn, I don't foresee us having any problems,” He shook his head, “If they're as strong as you say they are, it won't take too awful long to teach them our ways.”
“They're stronger than any gang I've ever come across,” She sighed, “But still no match for us. When I first told Justin and he didn't believe me, I took 5 of them out in under 5 minutes.”
“How'd he react to that?” He chuckled, “I can't imagine well, since you were supposed to be his prisoner.”
“He was definitely shocked and I guess, worried would be the only way to describe it,” She frowned, “So far, I've held nothing back from him the way I did with Dee and Jerome's gang. I've shown him exactly how powerful I am and he hasn't ran yet, so that says something, I guess.”
“What about after the mission, Biff?” Aaron asked, “Are you gonna get back into things?”
“Once this mission is finished and I'm confident that Justin and the crew are as powerful as we are, I'll be done. I'm getting too old for it all. It'll never disappear completely from my life, because of Justin, but the more years pass, the more I hate the blood on my hands. I just want a family some day. I wanna settle down and get married and have a couple kids. I don't wanna have to worry about keeping up with the mission.”
“How are you ever gonna have that if you stay with Justin and he stays with the gang?” He wondered.
She shrugged and let out a deep sigh, “I want that with him more than anything and I'm hoping that once we finish this mission, the others will be trained well enough to keep Justin out of it as much as possible. I'm not sure he'd ever give it up, but we haven't talked about it either.”
“I gotta tell ya, once you're out, life's pretty great,” He gave her a sad smile, “I mean, obviously, I'm back in for the time being and I'm really glad you reached out to me to help, but once this is over, I'm going back to the simple life. Courtney and I are gonna start a family and just live like normal people.”
“Do you think we can do it?” A small frown crossed her face, “Do you think we'll be able to teach them the way Nick and the others taught us?”
“I know we can,” He nodded, “Probably better. I mean, we've picked up so many things along the years that Nick and the gang didn't teach us. There's a reason we're still standing and they're not around anymore.”
“I miss them,” She bit her lip; her heart breaking a little as she remembered them, “I actually think about Nick quite a lot. Him saying 'Never let them see your fear. Never let your guard down. Never let them beat you.' resonates through my head all the time. Not even just when it comes to the gang, but just life in general.”
He smiled as he remembered his brother, “I miss them too. Until I got out, I never realized how much of Nick's advice actually just applied to life in general.”
“I wish they could've gotten out before it destroyed them,” She shook her head, trying to rid herself of the heartbreak she was still feeling over the loss, “Nick would've been a great father and husband to someone.”
“He would've,” He agreed, “I guess I sort of think of my life as a legacy to him. If he'd gotten out, he would've been able to find the happiness I found in Courtney and I know he'd want that for me. So, I just hope that I make him a little more proud every day.”
“He was always proud of you, Aar,” She smiled, “He worked so hard at being the father-figure he knew you needed and your achievements were never small to him.”
“That last night, the last mission we did? When we took out the guys who killed them? I got back to the house and spent a long time crying for Nick and reflecting on it all. I know he would've wanted revenge and then he would've wanted me out. That's when I decided it was time to go.” He explained, “I do know that he'd want me here now though. You were always special to him and he'd kick my ass if I let you face this alone.” They shared a soft laugh, fighting the tears.
“He always did his best to be a big brother to me and I hope he knew how much I loved and appreciated him.”
“He did,” He nodded, “He loved you. You were always Nick's soft-spot.” At that moment, they heard the garage door open and Justin was jogging up the stairs, joining them in the living area a moment later.
He immediately made his way towards Krystal, bending down to place a kiss on her lips, “Hey, Baby.”
“How'd it go?” She asked as he sat down in between her legs, her arms wrapping around his abdomen.
“I think we've found 2 new recruits. They have a lot of proving to do, but they've got potential and could definitely bring something to the crew.”
“That's good, Babe,” She leaned her cheek against his back, “We're gonna need a few guys to replace Alex and Carey.”
“What y'all talking about?” Justin asked, looking towards Aaron.
“We were talking about the old days,” She smiled, “And the family that trained us.”
“Do you think you'll actually be able to train us?” Justin met Aaron's gaze, directing his question towards him.
“If you're all willing to learn, we'll have no problem teaching you,” Aaron shrugged, “The things that we're about to teach you though, are quite rare and it's not safe to put that kind of trust or power into just anyone. We're gonna have to be extremely careful who we decide to train this way.”
“I guess I just don't understand how the training can be so different from what we already know,” Justin frowned.
“It's probably not,” Aaron shook his head, “But we focus on speed and agility. We concentrate a lot on the mental side of things so that no matter what situation you're put into, you don't have to take time to think about what to do next. We'll get you to a point where it all just comes naturally at the quickest pace possible to keep you as safe as possible in any situation.”
Justin nodded his agreement, “When do we start?”