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Brothers On The Run

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Story Title: Brothers On The Run

Type of story: Short/Medium fic

Main characters: Aden Jefferies, Sean Jefferies, Justin Jefferies.

BTTB rating: A.

Genre: Drama & Angst.

Spoilers: Possibly for UK viewers (I'm not exactly sure where you guys are up to.)

Any warnings: Language, Violence, mentions of abuse.

Summary: Sean escapes from prison after Larry's funeral, and Justin and Aden end up fleeing with him. What will happen when these three brothers try to survive life on the run?

AN: I've changed the storyline so that Aden tries to save Larry after he give him the drugs, but Larry ends up dying in hospital anyway.

Chapter One:

Aden shivered under his blanket, the material not doing much to protect him from the crisp wind that blew through the night. The fire that had been created was long gone, so he wasn’t able to gain warmth from that, and his brothers had taken the most sheltered parts of the shallow cave, which left him to curl up where he could. There was no way he was waking them up to ask them to make room for him- Aden didn’t want to ask them for anything, he was angry at the both of them.

It was their fault he was in this situation. It was their fault that he wasn’t tucked into his warm bed at Roman’s. It was their fault that he wasn’t with Belle. It was their fault his life would never be the same again. He was now a criminal himself, wanted for helping a convicted criminal escape from prison. It was all their fault.


The weather was dark and sombre, a reflection of what was to come today. Aden stepped out of the car with Roman, both dressed head to toe in black. Without saying a word, they had headed to where a small group was gathering around an empty grave. He could see Justin’s face in amongst the blank expressions. Justin. The brother he hadn’t seen for years, returning for their scumbag father’s funeral. If only he knew what Aden knew.

He joined the group, and was greeted by a familiar, comforting face. Belle. His beautiful girl. The one who had been with him through so much. The one who had found him crying hysterically, waiting for the ambulance to arrive, after he realised he had almost killed his father. The one who had been there when, a few days later, his father had died in hospital. The one that was always there to support him, to love him, to take care of him. Now, at the funeral of a man he had almost killed himself, Belle slipped her hand into Aden’s and gave it a reassuring squeeze. Aden slipped a smile to her, and didn’t let go.

The funeral was just about to start, when a police car pulled up to the cemetery. Murmurings were sent through the group- was someone about to be arrested? Fear rocked Aden’s body- he wasn’t about to be sent to jail for attempted murder, was he? But no, two large officers stepped out of the car, carefully guarding the man dressed in a prison uniform between them. They made their way over to the surprised group of faces.

Sean had arrived.


As the breeze picked up, Aden tried to curl himself into a tighter ball. He didn’t understand why his brothers had to get him involved. Here he was, trying to piece his life together, when they had gone and smashed all his hard work to bits. They had never been there for him, not once in their lives, not when he had needed them most. And now he was here for them. It wasn’t fair. His family was always letting him down, and he was currently stuck knee-deep into a situation that he knew he couldn’t get out of.


The funeral had been short, few words were spoken, and Aden was glad it hadn’t lasted long. He didn’t really want to pretend to grieve for a father who had let him down time and time again. Sean was to be whisked away almost as fast as he had arrived, but before that happened, he asked to speak to Justin and Aden by the car, alone. Of course, alone meant with the two cops, but it was better than nothing.

Before Aden knew what was happening, Sean and Justin had struck a cop each and he was being pushed into the cop car. They were speeding off, Justin at the wheel.

“What the hell is going on?” Aden shouted, head spinning, as Justin dodged through the cemetery gates.

“I’m escaping, man. Getting out of that hellhole!” Sean revealed.

Aden tried to comprehend those words. “What the f***?!?!”

“Look, Aden, me and Sean have had this all planned for the day when our old man topped himself. We knew the booze were bound to kill him one day, and I didn’t think it was right to see my bro rot away in prison.” Justin explained as he steered craftily down the winding road.

“Are you guys insane?!?! You can’t get away with this! They’re going to catch you, and chuck you both in prison!” Aden tried to reason with his older brothers, chest tightening.

“They’ll chuck you in prison, too, mate.” Sean added calmly.

“What? No way! I don’t any part in your stupid little scheme!” Aden was shocked. Why were they getting him involved?

“Bro, we need you. We need you with us. You’ll be so useful to us, another pair of eyes to keep watch for us, another pair of ears to listen out for danger. You wouldn’t hang your own brothers out to dry, would you? Not again, anyway, not after you dropped me in it with that Ric Dalby!” It had started out as a plea, but now Sean’s words had become dangerously threatening.

“But what about Roman...and Belle...they’ll be so let down.” Aden mumbled to himself.

“They’re not even your real family! We’re the only family you’ve got left, your own flesh and blood that are willing to keep you safe, as long as you’ve got our backs- you wouldn’t desert your own brothers, would you?” Justin bullied Aden.

Aden sat back in the car seat miserably, all the fight left in him now gone from being emotionally blackmailed. “Okay, okay. I’m with you.”

“Good to hear, little bro.”


Aden looked up into the moon, large and grey, casting ominous shadows with the trees that lined the forest. His brow furrowed as he thought of Belle. She was probably devastated that he had turned into such a criminal. If only she knew the truth. It was Sean and Justin’s fault. All their fault.

“I’m sorry.” He whispered into the darkness.

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Thankyou guys! I'm really enjoying writing this story at the moment, so I'm glad you guys are enjoying reading it. The chapters in this fic are ending up rather short, but I think there's going to be a fair few of them! :)

Chapter Two:

As the group of three trekked through the bush, few words were spoken. Each brother was mad at the other for different reasons. Aden was mad at Sean and Justin for dragging him into this mess. Sean was mad at Justin because he hadn’t planned all the details carefully enough, and they had to get rid of the car. Justin was mad at Sean because he thought he brother should have been more grateful with all the effort he went to. Sean and Justin were mad at Aden because he wasn’t exactly being very co-operative. All in all, it made for a very tense journey.

It was Aden who broke the silence. “Where exactly are we headed, anyway?”

“To a mates of mine. I know he won’t tell.” Justin reassured him.

“How long is that going to take?”

“Few days yet.”

“Great.” Aden replied sarcastically. He was already feeling great frustration towards his brothers.

“Well, it would have been quicker if that idiot hadn’t stuffed up the plans.” Sean snarled at Justin.

“Hey!” Justin looked offended. “I organised all the camping gear and food and clothes, and helped you escape!”

“Yeah, but you screwed up our transport, you idiot!” Sean retorted.

“You knew we wouldn’t be able to keep that car forever, anyway. It was stolen cop car!”

“Well you should have organised another car to be waiting for us!”

Aden closed his eyes, trying to shut out his brother’s voices. He knew if he got involved, they would just attack him instead. It was best to let them fight it out till their tempers cooled down and they were ready to continue.

A few moments later, and the arguing had ceased. “Right, let’s get on with it.”

They continued on for a while, until it was time to stop for a rest and some food. As they sat on rocks, wiping sweat from their faces, Justin started talking. “Aden.”


“Did you really almost kill Dad?”

The silence was deafening. Both Sean and Justin were staring at Aden, while he avoided eye contact by staring into the deep forest. “Does it really matter?”

“No...but I just wanna know.”

“If it doesn’t matter then there’s no point trying to explain things to you!” Aden burst out, standing suddenly and trying to shove things back into his backpack.

“You did, didn’t you?” Sean sounded neither shocked nor happy. In fact, he sounded unnervingly calm.

“Shut up Sean, I don’t want to talk about it. Can we just get on with this ridiculously stupid plan?” Aden tried to change the subject.

“Sounds like we aren’t the only Jefferies that have come up with a ridiculously stupid plan.” Justin observed, intentionally trying to agitate Aden, to make him bite.

“Look, Dad told me something that will make me hate him forever. He was a pathetic, worthless man, and even if it wasn’t me that actually killed him, I’m glad the alcohol finally did.” Aden spat.

“What did he tell you?”

“It’s none of your business! I’m not about to spill my guts to my two brothers who have done nothing but let me down, time and time again!”

Furious, Aden strode off, ignoring his brothers calls to stop. He was angry and agitated. He was being the weak one, the one who gave in to his families’ emotional blackmail. And he had done it again, when he agreed to go on the run with Sean and Justin. He was not going to tell them what his father had said. Not just yet, anyway.

That time would come.

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I've almost finished writing this story! I'm so happy with myself. :) Umm...a warning of abusive themes in this one. Pretty short, too.

Chapter Three:

Out in the bush, with no-one to comfort him, Aden had that nightmare again. His face dripped with sweat and his body shook and convulsed in his sleep, as he entered the dream world which he couldn’t escape from.


They were arguing again.

These days, all Dad and Justin did were argue. The fights were loud and vicious, with both of them swearing their heads off at each other. Sometimes Sean’s voice would interject, or his grandad’s, and sometimes there was violence, so Aden stayed in his room until everything became quiet again. Aden knew what had happened is that Justin had run away, and would soon be back in a few hours or a few days. It was the way it always went.

But this time, it was different. Justin didn’t come back, and all his things were gone. Aden asked his Dad again and again where his sixteen year old brother had disappeared to, but he just grunted a drunken reply. He asked Sean, but the eighteen year old just shrugged his shoulders and told him he didn’t know. Aden, only thirteen at the time, was scared that Justin had died like his mum had, and he was never going to see him again, like he never saw his mum.

About a week after Justin left, Aden was crying in his room while his dad was out at the pub, and Sean was out somewhere, with a girl probably. His grandad was left to look after him. Sometime during the night, his grandad came into his room, telling him to be quiet, that everything would be okay, that he would take care of him.

For the first time that night. Aden understood. He understood why Justin had run away, he understood why Sean barely spoke. He understood what it was like to be scared and frightened, to feel weak and pathetic. And he understood what it was like to be angry- angry at the people who were supposed to protect him to abuse that trust, angry at the world for letting it hurt him so badly, and angry at himself for not being strong enough to do anything about it. He didn’t know what to do with all the anger, so he channelled it into hate. Hate for the world and for everything in it.


As the memories flashed through his head, Aden tossed and turned, groaning and trying to fight them away. He awoke with a shout, sitting straight up and breathing rapidly. As his eyes adjusted to the darkness, he remembered. He was no longer a thirteen year old boy, frightened of his grandfather. He was an eighteen year old man, trying to live life on the run.

A tired voice came from Justin’s direction. “Aden? You right there?”

Aden looked around to see that his two brothers had stirred, and he tried to steady his voice. “Yeah. Fine. Go back to sleep.”

“You were shouting.”

“Yeah. I was just having a nightmare. Nothing serious.”

“What was it about?”

Aden sighed. He knew that they were going to have to talk about it some time or another.


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Chapter Four:

Of all the reactions Aden was excepting to get, laughter was not one of them, which was exactly what Sean gave him. “You’re having nightmares about Grandad?”

A look of confusion marred Aden’s face. “Yeah.”

“You still letting that old bastard rule your life?”

“Sorry that I’m not as strong as you to simply forget about something like that!” Aden snapped at him. Justin remained silent, watching the edgy conversation between the two.

“Aden, that was years ago! God, are you that weak that you can’t even get over something that happened years ago?”

With those words, rage boiled in Aden, and he snapped. “I AM NOT WEAK!” He lunged at Sean, punching wildly, trying to make contact with his brother. Sean struggled out from under him, wrestling with Aden, sending sheets and bags flying. As Aden reached for Sean’s neck, Justin stepped in, pulling Sean off Aden and holding the two seething brothers apart.

“Oi you two! Like it or not, were stuck with each other, and I can’t see how pummelling each other’s brains out is going to help!”

“Let go of me!” Sean grunted, pulling his arm out of Justin’s grip. A bruise was starting to spread across his cheek. “I need to get some fresh air.” He added sarcastically, before turning on his heel and disappearing into the night. As Aden slumped onto the ground and Justin tried to re-kindle the fire, silence once again reigned over the camp.

“Why did you agree to help him escape, Justin?” Aden asked miserably.

“Because he’s my brother, Aden.” Justin crouched next to him.

“Yeah, but when has he ever started acting like one? He sure as hell wasn’t there for when I needed him, and I’m betting the same went for you. He calls me weak, yet he’s the one who can’t even handle the truth!”

Justin was quiet. There was no point in yelling or screaming- there had been enough of that done already.

“Face it Justin, our family is one big f*** up. Our grandfather... our father... us. The Jefferies are a doomed species.”

“We’re not a ‘doomed species’.” Justin chuckled internally at those words.

“Yes, we are! Look at us- we get angry, we drink, we fight, we hate, and we die. And it’s no wonder- we still can’t even talk about what happened to us without arguing!”

“Aden.” Justin warned. “It’s very difficult, to even bring up something like that...”

“Don’t you think I know that?” Aden spat. “I saw you...and Sean...and Dad...bottle everything up, only for it to explode in raging fights! Now, we still haven’t learned- we’re still bottling things up!”

“It’s just the way we are.”

“And you think that’s a good excuse?”

“I...I don’t know.”

“No. No you don’t. At least I was trying to change. You two, on the other hand...” Aden trailed off, letting the darkness escape with his words.

“Try to rest, Aden. We’ve got a long way to go tomorrow.” Justin, unsure of what else to say, did what he was used to. He changed the subject.

As Aden lay down, tears wetting the corners of his eyes, he wondered how the hell they were going to get through this journey together.

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Thanks for your lovely comments! :)

Chapter Five:

Sean wandered absentmindedly through the forest. It was dark and cold, and he wasn’t even sure if he knew the way back to camp. For the time being, he didn’t care. He had too many thoughts racing through his mind.

Maybe he had been a little too harsh on Aden. Calling him weak was a pretty horrible thing to do. He went right off when people called him weak, so why did he expect his little brother to be any different? Even though Aden was different to Sean - more calm and more controlled- they had still gone through the same, very terrifying experiences.


When Sean looked at Aden the next morning, he immediately knew. His grandfather had been in his room.

Gone were the sparkling eyes of a young teenage boy, filled with life and happiness. Instead, what they had been replaced with was a blank stare, hollow and empty, as the young boy struggled to comprehend what had happened. In this one look, Sean could see Aden’s pain and misery, a look which he had adorned himself, and had seen Justin show as well. It was heartbreaking for Sean to see a thirteen year old boy already broken, years of hate and sadness ahead of him.

As Aden looked at Sean, he knew what he wanted. Aden wanted Sean to comfort him, to tell him everything would be okay, to tell him that he wasn’t alone and that they could fight this monster together. He wanted support from the only person left in his life that he felt he could trust.

But Sean couldn’t help him. He was no good to himself, let alone to other people. How could he support another human being where he didn’t even know how to support himself? It was selfish of him, but he just couldn’t deal with it. It was too much for him to handle.

So, as he had done when Justin gave him that look for the first time, Sean turned away from Aden and willed him to leave the room. As his brother’s heavy footsteps faded away, Sean knew he had lost him. And for about the millionth time, Sean wished he knew how to be stronger.



His head snapped up. He had been so lost in thought that he hadn’t even heard Justin approach.

“We should get back to camp. We’ve got a long way to go tomorrow.”

They started heading back through the forest.

“Do you think we did the right thing, bringing Aden with us?” Justin asked him.

Sean nodded firmly. “Yes. He has to be with us. He’s our brother.”

“Yeah, but...he seems...different to what I remember.”

“Well, it has been five years since you last saw him, and three for me. Anyway, he tried to kill Dad. He’s not so different to us than you might think.”

“I wish he’d tell us what exactly happened.”

“Again...he’s just as stubborn as you or me.”


“Look, Justin.” Sean stopped them both, sighing. “I know it was very wrong of us to blackmail him like that, but he needs to be with us when we get to the cabin. If we had gone without him, he would never forgive us. Plus, it’ll make a good safe house.”

“I know. You’re right.”

“When aren’t I?” Sean replied cheekily. Justin let out a small laugh. “But Justin, remember to keep the fact we’re going to the cabin a secret from Aden.”

“Sure thing, man.”

“Who knows how he’ll react once he finds out.”

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Sorry guys! I've been distracted by my other fic, and so haven't been concentrating on this poor baby! Here it is!

Chapter Six:

As they spent all their time together, things became a little less tense between the three brothers. There was more light heartedness with their conversations as they travelled on through the dense Australian bush. They joked around with each other about all sorts of subjects. Even so, none of them dared to bring up their grandfather again.

“I can’t believe you’re repeating year twelve, mate.” Justin laughed at Aden.

“Well, I screwed up last year, and I had nothing better to do with my time, anyway.” Aden shrugged.

“You should have just given up after year ten- it’s what I did! Justin, too!” Sean encouraged.

“Follow in the family tradition, ey?” Aden joked.

“Yeah man. Become dumbasses like your brothers!” Justin grinned.

“Who said I was dumb?” Sean was mock offended.

“Just look at you- you’re a great big oaf!” Aden retorted.

Sean playfully punched his little brother on the arm. “Hey!”

“You know, I was actually trying to make my girlfriend proud of me.” Aden revealed quietly.

“What’s this girls name again?”


“Ah...Belle. She was at the funeral, wasn’t she?”


“This girl something special to you then?” Sean prompted.

“Yeah. We were....close.” He sighed “I hope she’s not too mad at me...for leaving like that.”

“Mate, from what I know of women is that they’ll end up messing with your head anyway. You’re better off without her. Women just complicate things.” Sean gave Aden his ‘worldly’ advice.

“Belle was different though. She was something special.” Aden tried to explain as they carefully made their way down a rocky hill.

“Aden, I’m sure you’ll have plenty other women running after you, women who you’ll find to be just as special. Us Jefferies never have a shortage of hot women running around at our feet, aint that right Justin?” Sean grinned cheekily.

Throughout this conversation, Justin had remained hushed. He quickly agreed with his brother, and then went back into his own thoughts.


Justin stepped off the bus and was immediately immersed into the busy and bustling world that was Sydney. People rushed past him, talking loudly on mobiles about ‘amazing business deals’ and ‘fantastic economic opportunities’. No one cared about him- he was just another figure against the gigantic scope of Sydney. It was so different to Summer Bay, where everybody knew everyone else’s business and privacy could be ruined by a mouth as big as Colleen Smarts. He grinned like an idiot- it was exactly what he wanted. It was time for him to blend in.

As he walked down the street, trying to figure out exactly where he was, he accidently bumped into a figure, which sent some of his maps and brochures flying.

“Oh god, I’m so sorry!” Justin apologised profusely, crouching to grab the things he dropped.

“Nah, totally my fault.” The figure crouched to help. Justin looked at him, and was struck by how attractive the guy was. He couldn’t have been much older than himself, with smooth, dark features, a beaming, perfect face, and a body that didn’t look all too bad either. As Justin struggled to bury these all-too-familiar feelings, there was one thing he couldn’t deny: this boy was cute.

“You on a holiday or something?” The boy asked him casually, handing back the rest of the brochures.

“Thanks. And no, I’m actually moving down here. Looking for a hotel or something before I find a place to rent.” Justin fumbled a little with his explanation.

“Sweet.” The guy nodded approvingly.

“My names Justin.”

The guy flashed Justin a gorgeous grin, which made his stomach turn. “Hi Justin. Nice to meet you.”

“I’m Cam.”

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I did not forget about this fic...much :unsure: I had this next part all ready to post too! No warnings- bit of a filler chapter.

Chapter Seven:

“We’re lost.”

Aden’s announcement echoed down into the valley they were standing atop of. Justin had stopped a few moments before, studying the map intensely and muttering to himself. His head snapped up at the comment. “No we’re not!”

“We better not be.” Sean threatened.

“We’re not lost. I’m just a little...confused.”

Aden rolled his eyes. Taking his backpack off, he noticed that it had become considerably lighter. “We’re running out of food, too, and I’m not about to turn to cannibalism.”

Sean threw his hands up in frustration. “Great! We’re going to starve to death all because this dumbass can’t read a map!”

“I can too! I did Scouts, in case you don’t remember!” Justin told them proudly.

“Doesn’t mean you can read a map.”

“Give me a minute, alright?” Justin turned his back on his brothers, and continued to mutter to himself.

Sean and Aden sat on the leafy ground, looking out over the valley. Absentmindedly, Aden started picking up stones, and threw them, hard. He could hear the faintest of noises as they brushed through trees and hit the ground.

Out of the blue, Sean cleared his throat and started talking. “Listen, man, sorry about calling you weak the other day.” He said gruffly.

It took Aden by surprise. “It’s cool, man. Don’t worry about it.”

“Still, it was a pretty mean thing of me to say.”

“Sean, don’t worry about it. I’m sorry I went off my nut and punched you.”

Sean shrugged. “Meh. How else could I expect you to react? Our family talks with our fists.”

“So true!”

“Do you remember that time when Dad was driving, and he slowed down because there was a pedestrian crossing the road, and the guy behind him started honking the horn?”

Aden started sniggering. “And then Dad got out of the car, all ready to have a punch-on with the guy...”

“...and when the guy got out of his car, he turned out to be this massive dude, so Dad quickly jumped back in our car and sped off?” Sean finished, laughing heartily.

“We gave him s*** for that for ages!”

“I know! It was the funniest thing ever!” Sean’s laughter died. “You know, I kinda miss Dad.”

Aden’s brow furrowed. “Don’t. He’s a worthless bastard.”

“Aden, I know he wasn’t the best dad in the world, but he was still our dad!”

“You wouldn’t want to even think about him if you found out what he told me.” Aden muttered darkly.

Sean waited for Aden to continue, but instead he went sullen, and kept throwing stones into the valley. “Sean?”


“When are we going to properly talk about it?”

“Talk about what?”

“You know. Grandad.”

“Not yet.” Sean stood up abruptly, indicating that the conversation was over.

“But...” Aden pressed the issue.

“Not yet, Aden.” Sean repeated firmly, and as Aden looked at his brother, he could see the pain in his eyes. Aden knew then, that as much as Sean liked to pretend he had dealt with his past, it hurt him as much as it still hurt Aden.

“Aha!” The cry came from Justin. “I’ve figured out which way to go!”

“Are you sure?” Sean joined him.

“Sure I’m sure! And if we continue at a steady pace, then I’m pretty sure we can make it there before nightfall!”

“Make it where?” Aden queried.

“Oh...um...just to this pretty big campsite I know about. With proper toilets and everything!” Justin explained quickly.


The brothers continued on, Aden completely unaware that his childhood would soon be back to haunt him.

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More will be explained in the coming chapters! :) One last update before the weekend...hope you like it!

Chapter Eight:

This place was familiar.

Aden couldn’t quite put his finger on it, but he knew this place. It wasn’t so much the landscape- that hadn’t changed since they had started their travelling- but it was more the atmosphere. His senses were starting to tingle.

He decided to speak up. “I think I’ve been here before.”


“Yeah. I’m not sure, but I feel like I know this place.”

Justin just shrugged, and Sean remained silent.

“Gee, helpful guys.” Aden muttered under his breath.

The sun was starting to set, and the nights wind was beginning to blow in. The three brothers fought their way through a dense clump of scrub, and as Aden untangled himself from the branches, he looked ahead to see why his brothers had stopped.

It was the cabin.

The small wooden building stood proudly in the centre of the clearing, the only trail leading to it a dusty dirt road. Looking much like an abandoned home, it was still and silent, all movement void from its existence. The veranda, which wrapped itself around the structure, was now falling apart, the railings rotten, and the small garden which had once been filled with lush green plants was dead.

Aden was stunned. He couldn’t move or speak. He hadn’t seen this place in years- the last time he had been here was when he was ten. It was right before his mum got sick...right before she died...right before his dad became a hopeless drunk and his grandfather moved in with them...

“W...why?” He croaked. “Why are we here?”

“It’ll make a good safe house, bro.” Sean told him.

“But...why here? Why this one? Why not any other cabin?”

“There’s less chance of someone finding us here. The only people who know about this place besides us were Mum and Dad, and they aren’t about to come here any time soon.” Sean sighed.

“I...thought we were going to a campsite, and then to your mates house.” Aden directed at Justin.

“Sorry, Aden. We kinda lied to you about that. We thought if you knew we were coming back here, you’d...you’d...”

“I’d what? Get upset? Get pissed off? Not want to come?” Aden shouted. “Well, you were spot on! I can’t believe you both lied to me- again- and brought me here!”

“We thought it would be cool to see our childhood holiday house again.”

“Why?” Aden shot back. “So we can be reminded of all the happy memories? Of all the good times we shared together as a family? To make us feel bitter and resentful that those times are gone now, and what we’re left with is three very messed up people? You two can go right ahead, but there is no way I’m going near that place!”

“Aden!” Sean pleaded.

“No.” He said resolutely. “I’m staying right here.”

As the night got darker and colder, Sean and Justin gave up trying to persuade Aden to come inside. It became especially difficult when he refused to look or talk to either of them, so they retreated into the cabin, planning to have try again soon.


“Okay guys- we’re here!” Their dad announced as he pulled the very crowded station wagon up to the cabin. Sean and Justin tumbled out of the car, yelling and screaming, running around and around the clearing. Aden followed his brothers at a much slower pace, eyes widening as he looked up at the building. This was his first holiday here with his family, and the five year old was very excited to explore these surroundings.

“Aden.” His mother’s warm voice called him from the stairs, golden hair cascading over her shoulders. Her sunny smile was stretched across her face, as she beckoned to him with an outstretched hand. “Come with me- let’s go inside!”

He ran to his mum, grabbing her hand and letting her lead him up the stairs. They went inside, and Aden was amazed by the large fireplace, the soft, comfy couch, and the immediate cosiness he felt when he entered this place.

“I used to come here when I was a little girl.” His mum told him.


“Yes! Your Auntie Kim and Uncle Steve and I used to love playing here. We had a lot of fun.”

“Are you going to play with me here?”

“Of course! We will all play together!” His mum told him happily, giving him a squeeze.

Just then, Sean and Justin burst inside, still screaming. His dad followed closely with some bags, and gave him mum a big hug.

Aden started chasing after his brothers, joining in their yelling match.

They were going to have a lot of fun here!


Justin came to Aden, carrying a bowl of tinned spaghetti. “Brought you some dinner.”

“Not hungry.” Aden refused stubbornly.

“For god’s sake Aden, get your arse inside! It’s so much nicer in there- we’ve even got the fire going.”

“No thanks.”

“Stop being a stubborn prick. You’re going to freeze your arse off!”

Aden sighed. Truth be told, he was getting cold. A nice fire and a roof over his head might be a good change. “Okay.” He agreed. “But on one condition.”


“We have to talk about everything. Grandad, dad, us- everything. And soon.” Aden told him resolutely. He wasn’t going to back down on this.

“Okay, okay.” Justin agreed unwillingly. “Now, come inside before you freeze to death!”

With a heavy heart, Aden followed his brother towards the cabin, up the rickety stairs, and across the rotting veranda.

“Look who decided to come into the warmth!” Justin announced to Sean.

Sean, who was standing near the fire, looked at Aden. Silently, Aden crept inside, looking around at the cabin. Everything was exactly as he remembered it. The fireplace, the lounge, the kitchen, the dining table, the floors, the walls, the roof. As he stood there, the memories came flooding back. The endless games of hide-and-seek. Indoor football when the weather turned against them, which usually resulted in a broken something. The meals that his mum used to make taste delicious, even with the limited facilities. Rugging up by the fire while his dad told them spooky stories, then falling asleep in his mother’s arms. The loud giggles which came from the kids room late at night, when they were pretending they were asleep, which caused their parents to yell at them from their bedroom. The happy, joyful, excitable, fun filled memories. The memories that Aden though he had lost.

There, in the middle of the cabin, with his two brothers watching on, Aden broke down. All the emotion from the last few days, and the last five years, burst out of him, and once he started crying, he wasn’t able to stop. It wasn’t normal crying either- it was a hollow, piercing wail, tainted with anger and sadness, broken up with huge sobs and gulps. Aden fell to the floor, putting his head between his arms, trying to muffle the sobs, to make them stop, but no matter how hard he tried, they just kept coming. All his fears, all the loneliness he had ever felt, was now spilling out of him, wild and uncontrollable. He was no longer eighteen anymore. He was a scared and hurt thirteen year old boy.

Sean and Justin watched him, both knowing exactly how Aden felt, both wanting to give in to emotion and join him on the floor. But they didn’t. Instead, the guilt that they felt for abandoning their little brother made them act like the big brothers they should have been years ago. This time, Sean didn’t turn his back on him, and Justin didn’t run out on him.

This time, they were there for Aden. They picked him from the ground and comforted him, reassured him, and told him that everything was going to be alright.

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I think I'm happy with this chapter. *shrugs* Oh well- read on! :)

Chapter Nine:

Aden slept for a solid twenty fours hours after his breakdown. He was physically and emotionally exhausted. Sean and Justin had put in him in the parents room, covering him with blankets and drawing the curtains, so he wouldn’t be disturbed. He slept a heavily, dreamless sleep, his brain completely tuned out from everything going on around him. He woke up just before dusk, stumbling out into the kitchen to find his brothers preparing a dinner of what looked to be various tinned items.

“Hey man.” Sean greeted him. Aden took a seat at the dining table. “Sleep well?”

“I haven’t slept that well for ages.” Aden confessed, resting his chin on his hands. “What you guys making?”

“Canned veges with canned beans and canned tomato.”

“Sounds appetising.” Aden grinned.

“Hey, this is a culinary delight!” Justin mocked.

“Plus, all this canned stuff is the only things not out of date.”

“Fair enough.”

They sat down to eat, Aden gobbling it up in about two seconds flat. He realised he was famished. What he wouldn’t give for a big juicy steak to tie him down for awhile. He participated in the dinner conversation, carefully avoiding anything that might bring up his breakdown. Once they had finished, Aden curiously starting snooping through all the cupboards.

“Have you guys had a look in here yet?” He queried, motioning towards the sideboard.

“Nah, not really. We just found the plates and stuff in the kitchen and that was as far as we got.”

Opening the doors and pulling our draws, at first, Aden didn’t find anything really interesting. A lot of it was bare. There were a few old pieces of china, and a few random bits and bobs, like a box of matches and a duster, but nothing worth getting excited out. At the bottom of one of the draws, he found an old photo- a family portrait it seemed, of them standing out the front of the cabin. Aden stared at his mum, and as he did, remembered her warm voice, always so loving and soothing.

He carefully positioned the photo on top of the sideboard, because that’s the place it deserved. Shrugging off his sadness, he went back to rummaging through the shelves.

Right at the back off the sideboard, his fingers closed round a bottle. Pulling it out and seeing it was gin, he realised he had come across his parents alcohol stash. The gin bottle was almost full, and so were the bourbon and rum bottles. There were also a couple of wine bottles hiding behind them.

Fuming, Aden gathered up all the bottles in his arm and stormed out of the cabin.

“Aden, where are you going?” Justin called, but there was no reply. A few moments later there was the sound of smashing glass. Jumping up from the lounge, Sean and Justin raced outside to find Aden throwing bottles filled with alcohol against a tree.

“Woah!” Sean grabbed his arm as he leant back to throw another bottle. “What the hell are you doing?”

Aden reefed his arm out of his brother’s grip to throw a wine bottle at the liquor soaked tree. “Venting!”


“I hate alcohol! I hate what it did to our father! I hate what it did to our family!” Aden yelled, throwing the last bottles, hard, at the tree. The glass shattered, splintering all over the tree and raining on the ground, and the three brothers stood in silence, looking at the mess created by Aden’s rage.

Justin put a reassuring arm around his brother. “I think it’s time that we had that talk.”

Sean frowned at him. “Now? No.”

“We have to Sean. We can’t keep avoiding it.”


“Look at Aden.” Justin nodded towards his younger brother, who was pale and shaking. “He needs us. He needs to understand.”

With a heavy heart, Sean agreed. “Okay. Let’s talk.”


They sat in the cabin, avoiding eye contact with one another, none of them really willing to begin talking first. Justin sat in the armchair, nervously picking at his nails. Sean sat at one end of the lounge, running his hands through his hair over and over again. Aden sat at the other end of the lounge, fiddling with his wristband, unclipping and clipping it. There were clouds of awkwardness in the air- none of them had ever been in a situation like this before.

Justin was the first to speak. “Aden.”


“What did Dad say to you that made you want to kill him?”

Aden took a deep breath. “When Dad came back from being on the run, he was in a pretty bad way. He was very sick, and he needed help. I was going to call the police on him, or at least an ambulance to help him, but then he told me that I couldn’t, that he had to tell me something. Something to make me understand.” Aden’s voice wavered at this point, but he continued on. “He told me that...what grandad did to us...he did it to him as well.”

“What?!?!” Sean jumped out of his seat, leering towards Aden. “Are you serious?!?!”

“Our father...he didn’t just suspect...he knew!”

Sean reeled at this news. His dad had known the entire time, and hadn’t done anything to help them. This was bad- this was really, really bad! This was the ultimate betrayal! Pacing up and down, he was fuming. “Are you trying to tell me, that the scumbag knew what was happening to his own kids, and let it happen?!?!”

“I think he is.” Justin answered him quietly. He was as shocked and as devastated as Sean, but instead of getting angry, he was upset.

“AAAAAAAARGH!” Sean screamed, before he started punching the wall, laying into it as hard as he could. Aden and Justin sat and watched, knowing that this was probably helping their brother comprehend the horrible news. Eventually Sean fell to the ground, breathing heavily, knuckles bleeding.

Aden sighed. “Now do you understand why I wanted to kill him?”

“He was our father. He was supposed to protect us!” Sean growled.

“Oh, like you did such a great job with protecting me?” Aden snapped, suddenly annoyed.

“What the hell is that supposed to mean?”

“You know exactly what I mean! You knew what was coming for me- you both did- and you still let it happen! While you, Sean, were off rooting every chick that looked your way, and you, Justin, were off running around Sydney, that dirty old man was coming into my room...and...and...” Aden broke off, tears now pouring from his eyes. “You should not be the one that feels let down- I should be! You guys weren’t there for me!”

“Aden-” Sean came and stood in front of him, uselessly waving his hands to calm him down.

“YOU KNEW WHAT WAS GOING TO HAPPEN TO ME, BUT YOU GUYS WEREN’T THERE TO PROTECT ME!” Aden stood up, screaming right into his older brother’s face.

“I’M SORRY, OKAY? I’M SORRY!” Sean shouted, silencing Aden. “But do you think it was easy for me, to watch both my brothers suffer like that? You think I didn’t want to help? You think that I didn’t want to protect you? I didn’t even know how to protect myself! It killed me to see you guys being tortured by that man, but I didn’t know what to do! He made me feel just as weak, pathetic, and useless as you guys did! So don’t you go around thinking that you’re the only one who suffered!”


Justin had finally spoke- not spoke, yelled. Aden and Sean looked at him, stunned, as Justin now stood in front of his two brothers.

“You think you both had it tough? Poor little Sean, watching on, helplessly! And poor little Aden, no-one there to help him! What about me? What about the fact that not only did I have to deal with that pervert, I had a number of other confusing and complicated feelings floating around in my head!”

“What the hell are you on about, Justin?”

He looked at his brothers sadly. “I’m gay.”

None of them predicted that Sean’s fist would come flying towards Justin’s face, a terrible crunch reverberating around the cabin as muscle connected with bone.

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Only a few more parts to go! :)

Chapter Ten:

Aden looked from brother to brother- one, eyes wide as his blood dripped from his nose and down the front of his shirt, the other, taken aback but slightly pleased, as he rubbed his sore hand. He rubbed his face in frustration. “Oh my god, Sean- could you be any more stupid?!?!”

Leading his brother over to the sink, Aden found him a cloth, and Justin stemmed the flow of blood, holding his head up high, smiling his thanks to his little brother. As he stood over the sink, Aden marched back Sean. “Well?” He demanded. “Are you going to apologise?”

“No.” Sean replied stubbornly. “You heard him- he said he was gay!”

“SO WHAT?” Aden shouted. “I’m pretty shocked myself, but at least I didn’t react by punching the guy! He’s still our brother, and he still went through exactly the same things that we did!”

“Aden, it’s okay! I think you both deserve an explanation. Just as soon as the blood dies down a little.” Justin indicated towards his nose.

“I don’t want an explanation! I already understand just fine! Justin is just as bad as- him!” Sean spat out the last word with as much disgust as he could muster.

“Don’t you ever...compare our brother...to him.” Aden hissed, fists now twitching. If Sean didn’t stop shooting his mouth off soon, it wouldn’t only be Justin with a bloody nose.

“Guys- cool it! Give me a minute, okay?” Justin interrupted.

A few minutes later, and the brothers were back to sitting on the lounge, only this time Justin held the cloth to his nose.

“Now,” Aden started. “I think what Sean was trying to say...when he punched you in the face-” He glared at Sean, who was now looking sheepish and slightly guilty. “-was...why? I mean, we don’t really understand, Justin! We never even suspected!”

“Well, that’s because I hid it from everyone. I was too ashamed to even admit it to myself.”

“But...gay? Are you sure?” Sean asked awkwardly.

Justin raised his eyebrows. His brother’s ignorance astounded him. “I didn’t choose to be gay. I just am.”

“It’s just...” Sean trailed off.

“You don’t understand why I’d want to be after Grandad?”

Sean nodded, glad that Justin had said it and not him.

“Believe me; I didn’t want to be either. Even before Grandad, when I was still at school, I started having these feelings for other boys, which didn’t feel right. You know what Dad was like- he acted like being a big tough macho man was the only way to go. And then I really started struggling with my feelings when Grandad was around- it was sick and wrong and nasty, so I tried to deny it myself. After I moved to Sydney, I thought that would be the end of it, but then I met Cam.” He took a deep breath, eyes glazing over. “Cam...he was really wonderful to me. He helped me find a place to live, and a job. I opened up to him and told him about Grandad, and he helped me to deal with my feelings towards other men, and eventually accept myself as being gay. I’m not with him anymore, but I’m always going to remember him- he was the only person I’ve ever told about Grandad.” Justin finished.

Sean sat back, thinking. He admired his brother for having the guts to admit something like that, not denying the truth to himself any longer. It surprised him that his brother was that strong- Sean knew if he had a secret like that he would never let it out. Guilt came flooding through his system- he had just hit his brother for telling the truth! Sean felt horrible. “I’m sorry, man.”

“It’s okay, bro.”

“But I shouldn’t have...”

“Sean, it’s okay. As you say- our family talks with our fists!”

Suddenly, there came a burst of laughter from Aden’s direction. They both turned to him, frowning. Aden waved his hand in front of him in defence. “I’m sorry!” He gasped, before letting out another fit of giggles.

“Is it my story that you are finding so funny, Aden?” Justin said grimly.

“No! I’m sorry, but can’t you see? Look at us! Look at how f***ed up we are!” Aden announced, before laughing hysterically again. “I’m angry, cos you left me to deal with everything on my own, and I tried to kill my own dad! Sean’s angry, cos he feels bad for not protecting us, and now he’s on the run from the cops! And Justin’s angry, cos not only does he feel as weak and as pathetic as we do, he turns out to be gay! It’s hilarious!” Aden was snorting and gasping for air, trying to hold back his amusement.

Justin and Sean looked at each other, and they too, burst into laughter. They didn’t even really know why they were laughing- they just were. After everything that had happened tonight, laughter now seemed like the only obvious thing to do.

Eventually, the laughter died down, and Aden apologised again. “I really am sorry, Justin. I realise this is a serious matter, but I just couldn’t help it!”

“It’s okay. I think that’s all what we needed.” Justin smiled.

“You know Aden, I think you’re probably the strongest of all of us.” Sean announced.

Aden laughed. “No way!”

“No, I know what Sean’s saying.” Justin agreed. “Me and him, we’ve constantly run away from our problems. You, on the other hand, you were facing them, trying to get help for yourself. You should be proud of yourself.”

“But...I tried to kill Dad!”

“If I were in your shoes, I probably would have done exactly the same thing.”

“Me too.”

At that moment, Aden felt the strongest connection with his brothers that he ever had before. For all the hate and anger he had felt towards them for the past five years, he felt something else too- compassion. “I’m sorry.” He whispered.

“For what?”

“For hating you guys so much.”

“Don’t be.”

A sense of peace and calmness fell over the cabin. These three brothers, who had always felt that their family had let them down, had finally come together, tied by a bond that was now unbreakable.

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