Sight

Sight Chapter 37: At Arm’s Length

24
7:34 a.m. | Tulewood Garden Lane
Aislyn hands the driver the fare for her ride and steps out into the chilly morning air. Upon Minah’s suggestion, she was to accompany Axel on his assignment for the day in Ravensburg. They had all exchanged contact information at the Sentinel HQ, and around dinner time the night before, she’d received a text from Axel with an address and instructions to meet up at 7:30.

She was hoping that the day’s excursion would allow her and Axel to eliminate whatever awkwardness had already formed between them during the previous day’s encounter. After receiving his text, Aislyn proceeded to spend the rest of the evening reading through the materials she’d gotten from the library; she was fairly certain she knew what a typical day on the job would entail.

25
Axel’s text was vague, he’d sent the park she was entering as the destination, but nothing more. Aislyn begins to walk around, catching sight of some mothers pushing strollers and elderly folk feeding birds. Just as she’s about to consider calling Axel, she notices his tall frame leaning beside the entrance to a subway station, and heads towards him.

“You’re late.” He says when she finally reaches him. “Barely.” Aislyn says back defensively; Axel raises an eyebrow and Aislyn feels some heat rise to her face, “I mean, sorry. I had to take a cab and my driver wasn’t exactly speedy Gonzalez.” She says. Axel grins at her joke and Aislyn takes that as a positive sign that by the day’s end things between them would be normal, perhaps even friendly. “Why didn’t you just drive?” He asks. “I don’t have my license… yet.” She answers, more heat rising to her face. “You might want to work on that.” Axel says as he pulls open the door to the station. “Right.” Aislyn mumbles as she enters after him.
___

26
11:23 a.m. | Fischer Marine Corp. HQ
As they sit beside one another on the subway, Axel fills Aislyn in on the day’s agenda. He enlightens her on the case he’s working on: an investigation of the Fischer Marine Corporation. They were a large organization that owned aquariums and attractions along with facilities that performed research on aquatic animals. Recently, there have been whispers that Fischer was using its company as a cover for illegal animal trafficking and other illicit activities. Axel had been assigned to the story and covertly began gathering information from sources here and there to determine whether there was merit to the story or not. Today, he was finally going to speak with a representative from the organization itself to question their business practices.

Aislyn was surprised at the thoroughness Axel displayed in filling her in; from his fact-checking and conducted interviews, to his contact list and connections. Despite all of his chattiness, she couldn’t help but notice Axel’s reluctance to look her in the eyes. Instead, he opted to glance down at his hands or straight ahead at the passengers in front of them for almost the entirety of their ride.
___

27.5
2:14 p.m.
“That’s it?” Aislyn asks as she hurries to keep up with Axel’s long strides as they exit the building. “What’s wrong? Not as glamorous as you thought it’d be?” Axel asks with his second grin of the day. Aislyn resists the urge to roll her eyes, “You asked that woman every question under the sun, except whether or not those rumors are true.” Aislyn says. “And why do you think that is, rookie?” Axel questions, a hint of amusement in his voice despite his expression returning to the sternness he displayed for the majority of the day. “I’m guessing it’s still too early…”

“That, and the fact that bringing the issue to their doorstep like this, with no cameras or warrants, will only give Fischer enough time to clean up their act, or at the very least, cover their tracks enough to make my job more difficult.” Aislyn nods as she takes this in. “So what now?” She asks. “Now, we head back, where I shall continue to work on this, and you can tag along with someone else to get more of a feel for the job or have Silva give you your own assignment.”

“You don’t need help?” Aislyn inquires, and Axel scoffs, “If you knew me, you would not be asking something so ridiculous. Let’s go.” Aislyn opens her mouth to retort, but decides against it and hastens her pace to remain by Axel’s side.
___

29
They ride back to the Tulewood Station stop in silence. Aislyn wasn’t sure if things between her and Axel had improved or not. A part of her had become invested in the case and wanted to get to the bottom of it with him, but she knew asking something like that would only put her even further from his good graces. “So…” He says, finally breaking the quiet between them as they climb the stairs leading above ground. “Do you need a ride back to Bayville?” Aislyn is pleasantly surprised at the offer, she’d have thought that spending three hours on a ride back together would be the opposite of what Axel would want to do. When she stops to look at him, she’s even more surprised to see that he’s meeting her gaze and looking into her eyes directly for the first time all day.

Before she can answer, Aislyn’s phone buzzes in her purse. “Hold that thought.” She says as she pulls it out. It’s a message from her father including an address she doesn’t recognize along with a request for her to meet him there once she’s free.

“Umm, actually… it looks like I have somewhere else I need to be. I appreciate the offer though.” She says. “Alright then.” Axel holds the exit door open and Aislyn steps through. “So, I guess I’ll see you tomorrow then. Thanks for today.” She says as she walks out. “It was nothing.” Axel gives a lazy wave over his shoulder and heads towards one of the exits of the park. Aislyn watches him go for a moment before turning in the opposite direction to call herself a cab.
___

30
5:01 p.m. | Apricot Cir.
On the ride to her father’s mystery location, Aislyn’s thoughts linger on Axel. After their day together, she wasn’t sure what to make of him. There were times when he would get lost in his explanations and things would seemingly be all right, only for him to then slip into an eerie silence and do his best to avoid having to look at her. Maybe that’s just the way he is. Aislyn thinks. She’d probably be capable of believing that if she didn’t continuously compare his demeanor around her to the ease and care-freeness he displayed with Minah.

Aislyn normally wouldn’t waste time dwelling over something so trivial, but she couldn’t help it. Perhaps because this was her first proper job, and the first time in a long time in which she had to be a part of a cooperative environment, but she wanted things to be perfect… She’d need to work on herself to be okay with things not always going the way she’d envisioned.
___

31
Aislyn, who hadn’t been paying attention to the winding road the cab was taking her on, is surprised when it comes to a stop in front of a house on a residential street. She pays and utters a thanks to her taxi driver for the second time that day, and makes eye contact with her father whom she sees seated on the stairs of a porch as soon as she steps out. As she begins to make her way towards him, she notices a ‘For Sale’ sign in the yard.

“Hey kiddo. How was your first official day?” Her father asks once she draws near. “Hey dad, it was great. Where are we?” “There’s an interesting story involved in the answer to that question. Why don’t you have a seat.” Aislyn joins him on the wooden steps and looks out into the sky beginning to darken with the setting sun. “It’s beautiful out here, isn’t it?” Her father asks, following her gaze. “It is…” Aislyn says in awe. Her mind immediately drifts to Cailean, whom she’d imagine would enjoy capturing the vivid colors in the sky.

32
“This neighborhood is technically still a part of Bayville; just way more inland.” Her father says. “Despite it being my hometown, it surprises me just how much of Bayville I haven’t seen yet.” Her father smiles at her words, the lines beside his eyes deepening as he does so. His eyes lose focus, the way they often do when his mind takes him elsewhere, and Aislyn lets her own thoughts wander as the memories of her childhood drift to the front of her mind.

After a few minutes, the sound of her father clearing his throat pulls her back. “So, Nicole is actually inside with our real estate agent.” Aislyn looks at her father questioningly, expecting him to continue. “We kind of started getting the ball rolling before the holidays. Hence me finally tackling that darn attic… And we wanted to tell you, but after what happened with you and your friend I didn’t know how to organically bring it up. And-” “Dad.” Aislyn says, interrupting his flow. “You aren’t making any sense.” Despite her confusion, she couldn’t help but smile at her father’s muddled chatter. “Right.” He clears his throat once more, “Nicole and I have been thinking of moving.” “Okay…” Aislyn says, wondering what was complicated about that. “And the reason why…” Her father continues,…is because we are thinking of raising a child.”

33
Aislyn isn’t sure what expression she has on her face as she attempts to process what her father had just said. “A what?” “A child. You know, a young human being.” Her father says with a crooked smile. “That-That’s amazing…
Why didn’t you tell me sooner?” Aislyn asks, a million thoughts and emotions flowing through her. “Considering the grace and poise you displayed when meeting Nicole…” Her father says and Aislyn laughs at the embarrassing memory. “Dad, that was a decade ago. I’m a grown woman now, not a 16 year old hormonal teen.” “Yes, you are.” Her father says, drawing her in for a kiss on the forehead.

“Is Nicole expecting?”

“No, no, no.” Her father hastily clarifies. “Even though we aren’t that old, we’re past the point of having a safe delivery naturally. And there are a lot of kids without homes who need one, so we figured we’d adopt. Business has been good lately, and we aren’t going to get any younger, so now is as good a time as any.”

“I’m really happy for you dad, truly.” “Thanks, kiddo.” Her father reaches for her hand and grips it tight, “I’m hoping this next one doesn’t grow up as fast as you did.”
___

35
6:47 p.m. | ButtonSmash Arcade & Bar
“As much fun as I’m having, playing these games, this isn’t the sole reason you dragged me out here, is it?” Cailean asks. Shortly after he’d returned home from work, Kimberly had shown up to his house in a pleasant surprise, and kindly requested – in the convincing way only Kimberly could – to go out drinking on a weekday.

Even though he was enjoying playing the various arcade games, reminiscent of the way they’d spend their free time after class in high school, Cailean knew Kim well enough to know there was definitely a reason for her inviting him out. Considering she hadn’t told him anything upfront, he figured she needed a little push in sharing what exactly that reason was. Kimberly groans beside him as she loses her game. “Perfect timing. I’m so not wasting another token on this thing.” She turns around and lays eyes on a couple leaving the bar. “Care for a drink?” She asks.

36
They place their orders and are left alone shortly afterwards by the bartender who heads into the back to fetch more ingredients. Cailean takes a moment to think back to when he’d last hung out with his friends one on one like this; it’d been quite some time.

Having grown up as an only child, there were times when he’d view his friends as siblings: Mai as the occasionally strict, but still fun-loving, older sister, Kimberly as the mischievous younger one, and Gus, without question, as a brother; embodying every element of what it meant to be one. He’d seen Cailean go through almost every kind of heartache and heartbreak imaginable. A small bit of guilt at his distance from Gus as of late begins to bloom in Cailean’s chest.

37
Cailean pulls himself out of his memories to look at Kim who appeared to be lost in her own thoughts. For the first time he notices just how different she looks. Her extra piercings and heavy makeup nowhere to be found, skin paler, and body thinner. With this realization, the guilt in Cailean’s chest grows. How could he have not noticed until now?

As Cailean continues to examine Kim, out of the corner of his eye he catches a man looking at her much less lovingly. The way the stranger eyes her up and down, licking his lips as he does so, awakens that brotherly instinct of Cailean to shield Kim that he’d developed during their school days. Not that she ever needed any protection; Kim was quite good at fending for herself, but she also knew she could depend on him to step in if she needed him to. Cailean glares at the man, quite obviously, and when their eyes meet the stranger has the decency to hang his head and look slightly embarrassed as he walks by.

38
Kimberly turns to face him, seemingly oblivious to what has just transpired behind her, and Cailean feels a flash of anger and concern surge through him. Was Aislyn as blissfully unaware of the men around her as Kim was? The thought of her being looked at the way Kim just was makes him feel bothered by the distance they now had between them. “Earth to Cailean.” Kim says beside him, and Cailean wonders just how many times she’d said his name. “Thinking of Aislyn?” She asks teasingly, and Cailean worries that he’s somehow mumbled something aloud as he had yet to share word of he and Aislyn’s relationship to anyone.

“What on earth makes you think that?” Cailean asks, turning away from the eyes that could read him as easily as a children’s novel. “Oh, please.” Kim says, “It is obvious.” The bartender returns and sets down their drinks; Cailean immediately takes a sip of his, hoping to blame the alcohol for the heat that was currently rising to his face. “So, are you two going out or what?” Kim asks. “We’re just-” Cailean turns to Kim, prepared to deflect, but the expression she has on tells him lying would be pointless.

39
“Yeah, we’re dating.” He says, taking another swig of his drink. And Kim immediately breaks out into a smile that makes him laugh involuntarily. “What’s with that face?” He asks. “I’m just happy because that means Aislyn took my advice and pulled the trigger. Lord knows you’re way too much of a softie, goodie-goodie, gentleman to do anything quickly.” Kim takes a sip of her drink and Cailean takes a moment to process her words. “Wait, what do you mean
your advice?”

“She came by my house before she left and we had a chat. I can’t tell you what we discussed, you know, girl code and all. But we gave each other some advice, and it appears Aislyn was able to follow through… and I wasn’t.” Kim sighs and rotates her drink in her hand. “What did you need advice for?” Cailean asks with an amused grin, the thought of Aislyn talking about him to anyone, particularly Kim, prior to coming over hadn’t crossed his mind and he was extremely curious as to what she said, but he knew Kim was not likely to disclose that information. Perhaps the alcohol buzzing through them would incline her to share as the evening progressed.

“Sorry DeCarlo, but I’m not nearly intoxicated enough to share that tidbit of information.” Cailean raises his arm to call over the bartender, and Kim playfully swats at his hand. “Jokes aside, I’m really happy for you, Cailean. I was beginning to worry you wouldn’t look at another girl ever again.”

“It hasn’t been that long.”

“It’s been almost a year.”

40
“Right.” Cailean says, downing the rest of his drink. “Guess we do need to call the bartender over.” Kim says as she watches him finish. Correctly sensing that Cailean did not want to discuss his ex, Kim switches back to the topic of Aislyn. “So you guys are starting out long distance, huh? That’s gotta be tough… Granted she’s not that far, but still.”

“If I’m being completely honest, it has only been a few days, and I’m already beginning to feel the strain.”

“Why?”

“I mean, like I said it hasn’t been that long, and you’re probably going to tease me for being a softie or whatever, but I feel like no matter what I say or do, Aislyn is holding me at arm’s length.” To Cailean’s surprise, Kim doesn’t crack a smile, or give him a signature eye roll or scoff. What’s stranger is, some kind of understanding seems to click into place for her. “She’s a guarded person, Cai. Rightfully so.”

“What makes you say that?” “Nothing.” Kim says hastily, only fueling Cailean’s curiosity as to what exactly Aislyn had told her more. “Right, well… I suppose we’ll just see how things go with time.” “Exactly.” Kim chimes in. “Don’t stress. You guys will be back in one another’s arms before you know it.”  

Thanks for reading! Eek, more wordiness and less action. Yup, this was yet another character/relationship building chapter. The text to image ratio was not my intent, but there are only so many ways to take a picture of the same scene before it gets repetitive and I didn’t want to condense any of the dialogue as these are all necessary developments for later. 😇 Yes there’s a child coming (eventually!) and Aislyn+Marco+Nicole shall be moving. Oh, there shall also be a time skip, or several, but I wont say where~ 

I’m attempting to post this at a reasonable time during the weekend as I wish to respond to your lovely comments in a timely manner, as well as do some more catch-up reading. Last time I posted on a Monday and I was unable to do both of those things, haha, so we’ll see if this goes better. 😂 Feel free to let me know your thoughts~ Hope you all have a great weekend 🙂
xoxo Amy

13 thoughts on “Sight Chapter 37: At Arm’s Length

  1. Ooh, I didn’t expect for Marco and Nicole to have a baby! That’s an interesting development.
    So, Cailean feels like Aislyn’s already distancing himself from him, and to be fair, she still hasn’t told him about her job or anything… And of course, the secret of her gift is getting in the way as always.
    Kim seems to still be very unwell after the kidnapping. And, she still hasn’t reached out to Gus. I feel sorry for her, and wonder what the reason was for her scheduling the meeting with Cailean. Oh, and Cailean’s ex? Hmm, interesting…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yup! There is a new family member incoming ☺️ I can’t wait to show him/her, hehe~
      Yeah, Aislyn is going to have to open up at some point, but until then, her secrets will slowly begin to bother Cailean more and more… until they reach a breaking point.
      Kim and Gus won’t be getting together any time soon, sorry to say 🙃 She is having a tough time, but the worst of it is almost over, she can only go up from here. Her reasons for meeting Cailean were partially to find out about the situation between him and Aislyn, and partially just to not be alone. Ahh, the ex is an interesting person to say the least. She’ll also be making an appearance soon-ish. A whole lot of confrontations and drama shall be incoming. Thanks for reading! 😄💕

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I loved this update. Curious what Kim wanted to talk about since she didn’t really say anything other than ask about Aislyn. Maybe that was it. Kim does still seem to be struggling a little. Curious about what they’ll find in the attic! Hmmm…. And of course Axel is very interesting and I find it curious he finally looked her in the eye. He must be beginning to trust her. Ready for more…so excited to have this back…I know. I say that every time!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you 🤗 Yeah, Kim’s reason for dragging Cailean out was to hear what the situation between him and Aislyn is, and to avoid being alone at home because she’s still having a tough time sleeping at night. Haha the attic’s mostly full of junk and old sentimental stuff like the box Aislyn dug through with J.D. a few chapters back. The reason Nicole was nagging at Marco to go through it was because they are going to be moving 😊
      Haha Axel’s actions going forward will probably only continue to confuse everyone, but there’s a reason for his oddness, I swear 😂 Aww, thank you Audrey ❤️ You’re making me blush 🙈 Thanks for reading! 😄

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I wonder if this will lead into Cailean learning about Aislyn’s ability – Kym knows, after all, so it would be logical for him to find out as well.
    And Axel really is a weirdo, ha, ha. 😛 I wonder what his problem is, but I guess we’re going to find out eventually.
    This was a really chill chapter, but it was good to see some of the characters interacting.
    It’s so great we’re getting more of this. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Kim’s rather good at keeping secrets, she occasionally forgets herself and may almost spill at times, but other than that she’s a vault of secrets, haha. So if Cailean is to find out, it shall not be from her~
      Looool, he is 😂😭 As soon as the reasons for his behavior is explained, a lot of other things will make sense, but yeah… it’ll be a while before we get there, hehe. I figured it’d be odd to jump into the reveals and whatnot without dedicating some time to know everyone so it makes me happy to hear that ☺️ Thanks for reading! 💓

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, I love the fact that Marco and Nicole are going to adopt a child! That’s awesome ^_^
    That was such an interesting conversation between Kym and Cailean..! We haven’t seen those two communucating very often, so I was so intrigued to see them hanging out! Looks like poor Kym is still struggling (which is really natural, even though Aislyn seems so over it already), and Cailean… well, you gave us some mighty juicy info there! 😀 He feels some distance between him and Aislyn, plus he experienced hearbreak about a year ago?! That’s very interesting… I wonder if that ex will make a comeback (part of me hopes so cause I’m a sucker for drama, lol)!
    I still have no idea what to think of Axel. He is kind of weird, but something tells me there’s more of him than meets the eye, so I’ll just wait 😉
    This was great! 😀 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yup, better late than never ☺️ Nicole really wants to be a mother. Yeah, I realized that other than telling you that they’ve been friends since high school, you haven’t really seen it – so showing Kim and Cailean’s interactions and friendship was/is necessary, especially going forward. Aislyn definitely had an easier time moving on, she’s kind of desensitized to death being around it so often. Kim’s pretty much at her lowest point now, so going forward she’ll be moving on up.
      Hehe, what can I say? I love to tease 😇 Aislyn and her secrecy is gonna strain them a bit, and the ex will be reappearing! Lots of drama incoming, you shall be a happy camper, hehe. Axel and his actions won’t make sense until you all find out what his deal is… until then, I’m enjoying everyone seeing him as an oddball 😂
      Thank you so much ❤️ side note: I almost didn’t recognize you in my reader because of your profile! I could be wrong, but this might be the first time I’ve seen you change it, ever. It’s pretty ✨ I saw you’ve begun gen 3, I cant wait to start it 😄
      Thanks for reading 💕

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yessss, I love drama, so I’m definitely gonna love whatever comes next!! 😀
        Aah yes, it’s indeed the first time I’m changing my pic (and my blog layout), you’re right! That’s in fact little Raina all grown up 😉 Looking forward to your thoughts! Thank you! ❤ ❤

        Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s a sweet Idea to adopt. Good for them! I wonder how Aislyn will take it when the kid is actually here though.
    Axel seemed better this time. Something is still up though, I wonder what…
    Oh, and it’s nice seeing Cailean’s cute face again 😛

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yup, they want to expand their family but know that – risks of natural birth aside – there are plenty of kids who need a home! It’s going to be an interesting experience for Aislyn for sure.
      Axel is going to progressively weird you guys out, or confuse you 😆 50/50 chance of either occurring till he finally comes clean, haha.
      Ahh, I cannot resist shoving him where I can 😌 Glad you enjoyed, hehe~ Thanks for reading! 💕

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Whaaaa Aislyn is 26 and doesn’t have a driver’s license yet? Makes me feel better about not having mine 😆
    Yay for Nicole and Marco adopting a child! That’s a lovely gesture and I’m sure they will both be awesome parents. I wonder how Aislyn will get on with the kid, I imagine she might be rather awkward haha. That makes me also wonder if we will ever see Aislyn have a kid… she doesn’t seem like the motherly type, and you did say she and Cailean don’t necessarily have that kind of happy ending. Is this story going to be a legacy or standalone?
    I love how Cailean was protective of Kim, and it was great to see them chilling together. That expression Kim has when asking about Aislyn cracked me up, it’s like ‘don’t even try, boi’ 😑
    Ohhhh I’m really curious to what happened with Cailean a year ago and who this mysterious ex is! Since you mentioned he cuts people out completely I doubt it’s a girl we’ve already met. Or maybe it’s Rey? Hm 🤔
    Great chapter! Even though it was quiet, it was nice to delve deeper into those character interactions 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yup! Hehe, she used to be able to walk or cab to where she needed to, but that isn’t the case anymore so she’ll be working on that. They’re both so loving, it’s definitely doing to be a nice addition to their family. Aislyn on the other hand is definitely going to be awkward 😆 She and Cailean are going to have this conversation down the line but she feels she’s terrible with kids and the idea of having a child scares her. As of now the answer to that particular question is up in the air, hehe. I’ll be annoying and cross that bridge if/when I get to the end of the story 😌
      Cailean and Kim have been criminally underrepresented compared to Guslyn, but their relationship is sweet and I hope to show it some more~ Haha I was quite pleased with how that shot came out – it captured the vibe perfectly.
      Good guess, but you’re right in that it’s someone who we’ve yet to see in the story – so Rey is out 😇 Per my usual fashion, that whole debacle shall be revealed at a later time.
      Thank you! And thanks for reading ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

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