The following story is fictional and is intended for an adult audience with an open mind.
It is not meant to suggest anything about the sexuality of the celebrities included in this story.
This story is fiction, meaning not real.
It's all for fun and enjoyment.
If you are under age, or it is illegal in your country, or you don't like stories about gay sex, please stop reading this immediately.
Judge Navarro banged his gavel, the courtroom clouded in murmuring gasps and the scratching sounds of pen to paper, other reporters writing on iPads, the reporters recording the surprising news.
Lucas' violet pools were staring quietly at the District Attorney, the young man knowing all eyes in the courtroom's gallery were on the back of his head.
All the members of the jury were staring at Lucas as well, the young man remaining seated, his face a mask of soft calmness.
The D.A. smiled, looking at the doctor again.
"So you're stating on record that this bat was the murder weapon? And that Lucas Carver's--I mean Lucas Carver-Belmont, as he calls himself now--fingerprints were on that murderous blunt instrument?"
Gideon stood up, the judge waving towards him with a sit down motion, the judge staring at the D.A.
"Tone down the embellishments, counsellor. You don't have to oversell the facts." the judge said, Waterman smirking, apologizing to the judge, looking at the coroner again.
"Yes, sir. This bat was the murder weapon and Mr. Carver-Belmont's fingerprint was on the bat." the man said, Waterman smiled, looking towards Gideon.
"Thank you, Dr. Cavanaugh. Your witness, Mr. Carlisle." he smiled, walking back to his table.
Gideon looked at Lucas, the young man quietly looking at him.
Gideon's blue eyes looked towards the doctor.
"Were there any other marks, injuries or physical anomalies pertaining to Mr. Addison's autopsy, Dr. Cavanaugh?" he said, the doctor looking at him.
"I have made a detailed report, sir. The District Attorney was given that full report." the doctor said, Gideon looking towards Nolan Waterman.
"I'm sure he was. I'd like to see that report myself, please."
Waterman smiled, looking towards the judge.
"It's on the evidence table, Your Honor. I was going to have it entered into evidence. The defence counsel can have full access to it now." the man smiled, the bailiff walking over to the table, picking up a folder, the man attaching an evidence tag to it, walking it over to Gideon's table, Gideon thanking him as he handed it to him, the lawyer opening up the folder, his blue eyes looking towards the doctor.
"Continue answering my question, Dr. Cavanaugh." he said, the doctor nodding.
"Yes, sir. Mr. Addison had a black eye, two broken teeth, a cut bottom lip and lacerations on his left cheek. There were also lacerations on his right hand. We also found blood samples and hair debris under his fingernails on that same hand. It didn't match the victim's." the doctor said, Gideon nodding, perusing the folder's reports, his blue eyes looking towards the doctor.
"Did it match the defendant's, Dr. Cavanaugh?" Gideon said, Lucas quietly looking at the doctor.
"No, sir. It didn't match Mr. Carver-Belmont's either." the man said, Gideon nodding again.
"What would you consider were the reasons for those lacerations, Doctor?" Gideon said, the doctor looking at him.
"I believe by the forensic evidence that Mr. Addison had been
in a fight or altercation, sir. Some of the lacerations were from fingernail
scratches on his right hand. Fingernail residue was found in those marks. Also
the bruise under his left eye had a faint ring imprint on it."
Gideon nodded, his eyes raising again, the young lawyer handing the folder to Grayson.
"So you're stating that the victim had been in a fight before his death?" Gideon said, Waterman looking at the young lawyer.
"Yes, sir. All indications and evidence lead to that." he said, the lawyer nodding again.
"So at the time of his death he could have been in a weakened state? His stamina drained?"
Waterman stood up.
"Objection, Your Honor. The victim's physical situation at the time is irrelevant. He was hit from behind by a baseball bat! Surprise shows no mercy against any physical conditioning."
The judge looked towards the D.A..
"Overruled. The victim's physical conditioning at the
time of his death is
always important to any case, counsellor. Regardless of any surrounding
conditions. Continue, Doctor. Answer the defense attorney's question."
The doctor nodded, looking at Gideon, the young man staring at Waterman.
"Mr. Addison was physically fit, sir. He was in his late twenties, muscular and trim." the doctor said, Gideon nodding again.
Grayson's blue eyes met Gideon's, the older lawyer setting down the evidence folder he had been perusing, his eyes then looking at Lucas.
The young man was silent, looking calm.
"But he wasn't truly fit, Dr. Cavanaugh. I read your thorough autopsy report. Please state what else you found during Mr. Addison's autopsy." the young lawyer said, his eyes looking towards Lucas as well.
Dr. Cavanaugh looked towards the D.A., the lawyer quietly looking at Gideon.
"Mr. Addison's body, as I said, was fit, strong and trim. But his mind wasn't."
"Objection, Your Honor. The doctor can't make that assumption. He didn't have any contact with the victim while he was alive." Waterman said, on his feet again.
"Sustained. Please refer your comments only to the physical evidence you uncovered, Doctor." the judge said, the doctor nodding.
"I'm sorry, Your Honor. What I meant wasn't his emotional mind. I meant his brain characteristics."
"His brain, Doctor?" Gideon said, looking towards Lucas.
"Yes, sir. Jacob Addison had a large tumor on the back lower quadrant of his brain stem, right against the cerebellum. It was malignant. He would have shortly died from it."
The courtroom murmured again, the judge banging his gavel lightly, the room quieting.
Lucas remained silent, his head lowering for a moment.
Josh, Justin and Lance were all quietly looking at him, knowing how that news might affect Lucas.
The jury members were looking at each other, then at Lucas.
"The victim was dying, Doctor?" Gideon said, the D.A. on his feet again.
"Objection, Your Honor. The victim's previous health condition has no bearing on his death. He was attacked, beaten and then murdered. A malignant tumor has no bearing on that outcome."
The judge looked at Gideon.
"Tragic as this report shows, Mr. Carlisle, the D.A. does have a valid point. What is its bearing on the violent death of Mr. Addison?" the judge said, Gideon looking at him.
"No direct bearing that I know of, Your Honor. I only wanted all of
the victim's medical conditions known to the jury. We must also establish his own emotional
turmoil at that time."
"Agreed. I'll allow the testimony." the judge said, the D.A. looking at him.
"You provided this witness, Mr. Waterman. He will divulge all of his report. Overruled on your request."
The D.A. sat down, folding his arms.
"What effect do you believe, in your own experience, would that tumor have had on Mr. Addison's emotional, physical and interactive state, Doctor?"
"From the size of the tumor, I'd estimate that he'd had it for at least three years. It would take that long for it to mature to its ending size."
Lucas' eyes met the doctor's, the man staring at him.
"Three years?" Lucas said, the judge looking at him.
"Your client will remain silent, Mr. Carlisle." he said, Gideon looking at Lucas, the young man's eyes lowering again.
"What are the physical and emotional characteristics of this type of tumor on a patient, Doctor?" Gideon continued.
"The patient would have had mood swings, physical upheavals, emotional outbursts, as well as severe agitation and restlessness. The young man would have been an emotional, energetic, high strung man at times. The tumor was pressing against the cerebellum. It would react with the patient's movements, energy and temperament. His testosterone levels were well above normal. He would have been quick to anger or arouse, sexually and emotionally."
Gideon nodded, looking at Lucas.
"The veritable walking time bomb, as they say, Doctor." Gideon said, Waterman glaring at him.
"In a sense, yes sir. With treatment, the patient would have
been calmed, placated so to speak."
"Did Mr. Addison show any signs of treatment? Drugs or narcotics in his system?"
"No, sir. From what I see in his metabolism and blood work I believe the young man never even knew he had the tumor."
Gideon nodded, looking towards Waterman again.
"Let's focus for a moment on the established murder weapon, Doctor. Were there any other fingerprints on the baseball bat?" Gideon said, the doctor looking at him.
"No, sir. No other prints were found. Only the one print belonging to Mr. Carver-Belmont."
Gideon nodded, looking towards the D.A..
"Interesting. I wonder how that could be? If the defendant held the bat in his hand, there would have been more than one fingerprint. Not to mention skin residue of some kind." Gideon said, the doctor nodding.
"Yes, sir. That would be true. But the bat was
found floating in the pool alongside the victim."
"How long do you estimate the bat was in the pool, Doctor?"
"Judging by no water-soaked expansion of the wood, it would have been in there for only an hour or so."
"Would that length of time easily remove fingerprints and
skin tissue, Doctor?"
"If the area with the fingerprints was submerged it would be feasible." the doctor said, Gideon nodding.
"Understood, Doctor. But still unusual that there's only one print, perhaps for another reason." Gideon said, the D.A. looking at him.
"I have no further questions at this time for the witness, Your Honor." Gideon said, the judge nodding.
"The witness is excused." he said, the doctor rising from his seat in the witness box, walking back to his seat behind the D.A.'s table.
Gideon returned to his seat, his and Lucas' eyes meeting.
Gideon's hand went to his shoulder gently rubbing it.
"Call your next witness, Mr. Waterman." the judge said, the D.A. standing again.
"I call to the stand, Finnegan Delaney."
Finn's eyes widened in surprise, everyone surrounding him looking at him.
Finn's eyes met Lucas' turning violet pools, the young man calmly looking at him.
That calm look calmed Finn's own apprehension, the young man rising from his seat, walking to the front of the courtroom, taking his seat on the witness stand, the young man swearing the oath, sitting down after.
The D.A. smiled at him, walking up to the witness stand.
"Your Honor, this witness I believe may be apprehensive in his testimony, the young man being a close friend of Lucas Carver-Belmont. He also has direct involvement in all of this." the lawyer said, the judge looking down at Finn seated beside him.
"You will answer the District Attorney's questions
truthfully, Mr. Delaney. Your involvement with the defendant is secondary to the
true facts of this case. Including what you witnessed."
"Yes, Your Honor." Finn said, the young man looking towards Lucas, the D.A. looking at Finn.
"How long have you and Mr. Carver-Belmont been acquaintances, Mr. Delaney?" Waterman said, Finn looking at him.
"For over seven years, sir. I met him when his sister and I became friends in secondary school, or high school as its called here in America. We formed our band shortly thereafter." Finn said, looking towards Lucas, the young man quietly staring at him.
"And how long did your know the victim Jacob Addison?"
"I knew Jacob from the moment he walked into Lucas' life almost three years ago. Up until he left Lucas." Finn said, looking at the D.A..
"But he never left him, did he, Mr. Delaney?"
"He left him, after I and my friends made Lucas see what he was doing to him." Finn said, his voice showing soft emotion.
"You mean after you beat up Jacob Addison two years ago?"
"He hurt Lucas badly back then! He would have killed him that night! I'll always protect my friend!" Finn said, the D.A. smiling at him.
"As you protected him the night Jacob died?"
Finn stared at the lawyer, Lucas quietly watching his friend's emotions.
"Witnesses have stated that you and Mr. Addison had an earlier altercation at a private party that evening. That you attacked him there. Is that correct?"
"I hit him, yes. His surprising appearance set off my temper." Finn said, his eyes lowering.
"You're a very focused, hot-headed young man, Mr. Delaney." the man said, Gideon rising again.
"Objection, Your Honor. The D.A. is provoking the witness." Gideon said, the judge looking at him.
"Overruled, Mr. Carlisle. We all can see that the witness needs no provoking. You have a volatile personality, Mr. Delaney." the judge said, Finn nodding his head slowly.
"I've always been quick to state my feelings, Your Honor. Especially for those I love." Finn said, his blue eyes looking towards Lucas.
The judge nodded, nodding at the D.A. next.
Waterman stared at the jury, then looked at Finn again.
"On the night of Jacob's death you were in his condo, were you not? You've already stated that to police, correct?"
"Yes, I was. I went there that night after the party to give Jake an ultimatum. I told him to stay away from Lucas." Finn said, his eyes looking towards Lucas again.
"And how did he take to that ultimatum?" the lawyer said, Finn looking at him.
"He didn't agree to it."
"So the two of your fought again, didn't you, Mr.
"The man attacked me! I was defending myself!" Finn said, his anger softly rising, his emotions on full display.
"Calmness, Mr. Delaney." the judge said, Finn looking up at him, his anger calming.
His eyes met the D.A.'s, the man staring at him.
"Did you kill Jacob Addison that night, Mr. Delaney? Or did you rough him up and then let Lucas Carver finish the job?"
Gideon was on his feet immediately, the D.A. smirking towards him.
"Your Honor! The D.A. is badgering the witness! And making false suggestions!" Gideon said, the judge banging his gavel when the courtroom filled again with murmuring sounds.
"Sustained. The jury will disregard the second half of Mr. Waterman's questions. Mr. Waterman, you're walking a fine line of decorum and judicial prudence." the judge said, staring down at him.
"I'm sorry, Your Honor. I just got emotional after the first question." he said, looking at Finn.
"It seems to be the atmosphere in here. Curb your enthusiasm, Mr. Waterman. Calmness is needed by everyone." the judge said, Finn's eyes lowering.
"You will answer the first question, Mr. Delaney. You will disregard the second. As will the jury." the judge said, Finn looking at Lucas, his young friend calmly staring at him.
"I did not kill Jake Addison. He was alive when I left after our fight. Beaten down and laying on the living room floor, but he was alive." Finn said, the lawyer smiling at him.
"So you left him on the floor. Was he unconscious?" the man said, Finn looking at him.
"He was knocked out, yes."
The lawyer smiled.
"And therefore an easy target for the next visitor." the man said, Finn staring at him.
"What do you believe were Lucas Carver-Belmont's true feelings towards Jake Addison? From your own observations, of course." the man said, Finn staring towards Lucas.
"Lucas was afraid of Jake for a long time after their relationship ended. That man took a lot of Lucas' soul. And then Lucas thought the man was finally out of his life. He began to live his life again, free from the pain." Finn said, looking at Lucas.
"And when Jake walked back into his life?"
Finn stared at Lucas.
"Answer the question, Mr. Delaney." the judge said, Finn suddenly quiet.
"He was shocked when Jake appeared. We all were." Finn said, the lawyer looking at him.
"Did Lucas want Jake out of his life for good, Mr. Delaney?" the lawyer said, staring at him, Finn quiet again.
"Answer the question, Mr. Delaney." the judge said again, Finn staring at the lawyer.
"Of course he did! Who wouldn't. . ." Finn began to say, the lawyer waving off his last words.
"Yes, of course he did. And it looks like he has that now. Jacob Addison is indeed out of his life. No more questions, Your Honor." Waterman said, smiling at Finn, walking back to his seat.
"Your turn with the witness, Mr. Carlisle." the judge said, folding his hands in front of him, staring at Gideon.
Lucas leaned over, whispering in Gideon's ear, then returning to his calm facade.
Gideon rose from his seat, looking towards Finn.
"You have deep feelings for Lucas Carver-Belmont, don't you, Mr. Delaney?" Gideon said, Finn nodding.
"I feel for him like a brother. I love him." Finn said, Lucas smiling at him.
"Would you lie for him?"
"No, sir. Our love has always been built on trust and loyalty. And I'm an honest man. I've always tried to lead a life of open honesty." Finn said, Gideon looking towards the jury.
"On the night of Jake's death, when you left that condo, where was the baseball bat?"
Finn looked at Gideon.
"It was laying on the living room floor where I'd thrown it. Addison had taken a swing at me with it when I'd begun to turn around to leave; that was what had ignited the fight between us. He'd tried to sucker hit me. I grabbed it out of his hand, throwing it on the floor, then fought with him. I only need my bare fists to prove my own worth." Finn said, his father in the stands looking at his son with fatherly pride.
"So you had held the bat, as had Jake?" Gideon said, Finn nodding, looking towards Lucas.
"Yes, we'd both held it."
"It seems strange that that bat later had neither yours nor Jake's fingerprints on it. Strange indeed."
The District Attorney stared at Gideon, the young man staring at Finn.
"Since Mr. Waterman asked you a pointed question, I'd like to ask you one as well, Mr. Delaney. Did Lucas ever make any threatening comments about Jake? On ending his life?"
Finn stared at Lucas.
"No, sir. Lucas has never voiced any threats on anyone's life. His soul is pure giving love. I've felt that love." Finn said, Lucas softly smiling at him.
"Hearsay and conjecture, Your Honor. His own opinions of the witness' character." Waterman said, now on his feet again.
"True, Mr. Waterman. The jury will disregard Mr. Delaney's own opinions on Mr. Carver-Belmont's own self."
Gideon smiled at Finn.
"No more questions for the witness, Your Honor."
"You may step down, Mr. Delaney." the judge said, Finn rising out of the witness stand, returning to his seat, his and Lucas' eyes meeting for a moment as he walked past his table.
"As the hour is closing in on twelve, we should break for lunch." the judge said, the two lawyers nodding their head.
"Court is recessed until two." the judge said, banging his gavel. rising from his seat, everyone in the court rising, the judge walking out of it.
Lucas rose from his seat, his violet pools meeting everyone's standing behind him.
The group moved quietly, following Lucas and his legal team as they walked out of the courtroom, the three men followed by reporters as well.
Lucas sat down in a chair at the end of a long conference table, his violet pools looking around at all the faces now staring at him.
He and his family and friends were in a private room, the group followed there by the reporters, two armed security guards now at the door, the group together in private.
Josh sat down beside Lucas, his hand going in his on top of the table.
Gideon stood at the end of the table, staring at Lucas, his violet eyes meeting his.
"Why in God's name didn't you tell me about the bat, Lucas? That you'd touched it!" the young lawyer said, Grayson at his side, quietly looking at the young man in front of him.
Everyone in the room heard the seriousness in Gideon's words, the lawyer having been just as surprised as everyone else at that revelation.
"I'm sorry, Gid. I'd forgotten about the bat. I'd found it on the pool's edge when I'd climbed out of the pool after that stranger had hit me from behind. I'd picked it up then dropped it after seeing the blood on it. It was on the pool's edge when I ran out of the place. It must have rolled off there and fell in the pool." Lucas said, Gideon staring at him.
"You tossed it into the pool, Luke?" Alain said, Harry's arms wrapped around him, the two staring at Lucas.
"He didn't throw it in, Alain. He dropped it and it rolled in." Josh said, his lips kissing his man's cheek, Lucas smiling at him softly.
"Yes, I dropped it. But it was on the pool's edge when I last saw it." Lucas said, Josh rubbing his back.
"That's damning evidence, Lucas. Your fingerprint is on it. And no one else's." Emerson said, the man sitting down on the other side of Lucas, everyone else in the room sitting down on other chairs around the large table, and around the room.
Lucas' violet pools were staring at Gideon, the young man seeing the troubled thoughts showing in his blue eyes.
"Speak from your heart, Gid." Lucas said, Nick's blue eyes looking at Gideon as well.
He saw the look on Gideon's face as well.
"I was blindsided in there today, Lucas. I felt totally blindsided by the D.A.'s witness." he said, Grayson looking at the young man.
"We all were, Gideon." he said, Lucas rising from his seat, walking down the table, stopping beside Gideon, their eyes meeting.
His hand went to the young lawyer's shoulder, Gideon staring at him.
"What else aren't you telling me, Lucas?" he said, Lucas sighing, lowering his eyes for a moment, raising them again and staring into his blue pools.
"I've told you everything, Gideon. That one fact perhaps I should have divulged, but it did truly slip my mind until recently." the young man said, Gideon seeing the soft look of quietness in his violet pools.
"How recently, Lucas?" Tristan said, he and Savannah seated beside Emerson and Francesca.
"I remembered it yesterday, Dad. And I remembered something else about it, something I had verified. When I saw the doctor take the stand I realized that it would come out immediately about my fingerprints on it. I'm sorry for not giving you a heads up, my friend. But I thought the need for its surprise outweighed the reluctance I had in telling you. But I was just as surprised that there was only my prints on it." he said, Gideon looking at him.
"I'm your lawyer, Lucas. And I'm your friend. I need
you to trust me."
"I do trust you, Gideon. I have full faith in your abilities and your friendship. I want you to have the same in mine."
Gideon stared at him, the young man seeing another look hidden deep within Lucas' violet pools.
The young man lowered his eyes again for a moment, Gideon's hand going to the man's shoulder, his eyes meeting his rising violet again.
"I saw the confusion overshadowed by your love for me in your eyes, Gideon. I saw the depth of your love for me in your not wanting to draw that other truth out in front of me." Lucas said, his eyes moving, looking at Grayson.
"I saw the same look of compassionate love in yours also, Gray." he said, Gideon's hand rubbing his shoulder.
"I'm sorry you had to learn of Jake's deadly illness, Lucas." Gideon said, everyone staring at the young man, seeing the soft emotion in his violet pools.
Josh started to rise from his chair, Justin rising from his first, his chair right behind Lucas and Gideon, his hand going to Lucas' shoulder.
"I. . .I feel all of your love, everyone." Lucas said, looking into Justin's blue eyes, the young man sitting down in the seat in front of him, Justin's hand remaining on his shoulder.
"He was. . .he was dying. He didn't even know it." Lucas softly said, Justin rubbing his shoulder.
"Perhaps that was a blessing, Lucas." Lance said, Justin looking at his lover.
"It was more than that to me, Lance. It's shown me the truth." Lucas said, his violet pools showing a soft wetness now, Josh on the move again.
He sat down beside his soulmate, his arms going around him.
Lucas' violet pools met his blue, Josh seeing the soft love showing there, and the emotions behind it.
"It all makes sense now, Joshua." he softly said, Josh kissing his cheek.
"What makes sense, my love?" he said, rubbing his man's back, Justin's hand still on his shoulder, his other now on Josh's.
"All that anger, all that ruthless anger he had. It. . .it wasn't totally his own self. He was lost. . .lost in the pain of his affliction. That's what the doctor said, right? That perhaps that tumor was making him not himself?" Lucas said, looking up at Gideon, the young lawyer sitting down on Lucas' other side.
"All that pain he gave to me, all that sexual anger. . .it was because of the. . .of the tumor perhaps." Lucas softly said, Gideon looking at Josh.
"Perhaps, Luke. The illness ran through him for a long time, his own self changing as the doctor said. But I don't think you should make excuses for what he did to you." Gideon said, Lucas seeing the love shining in his eyes again for him.
"It. . .it wasn't me. I. . .I wasn't the reason he did that to me. He. . .he didn't really. . .he couldn't see what he was doing to me. I now truly believe that." he softly said, his violet pools meeting Finn's blue, the man standing across from him against the wall, Skyler's eyes on him as well, both showing soft tears in their eyes.
Trish's blue eyes were staring at Lucas as well, remembering her brother's past with that man, Andrew's arm around her.
Lucas rose from his seat, Josh and Justin releasing him, the young man walking around the table and stopping in front of Finn.
Their eyes met, Finn's hand going to his shoulder.
"Are you alright, Luke?" he said, Lucas hearing the love in his voice.
"Yes, Finnegan. How are you doing?" he said, Finn lowering his eyes.
"I. . .I wasn't much help out there either, Luke. I walked right into that man's baited trap. Me and my damn anger."
Lucas smiled at him, leaning forward and kissing his forehead, their eyes meeting again.
"You and your damn love. That's what I saw in there. Your sticking up for your brother. Your showing your love for me." Lucas said, everyone smiling when they saw the smile come to Finn's face.
"I love you, Lucas. You are my brother."
Finn smiled more, Skyler kissing Lucas' cheek now, the young man smiling at both.
He turned, looking at everyone watching him.
"I'm alright, everyone. And thank you all for standing by me. I felt all your love behind me. No matter what's shown in there I still feel all your love."
Gideon walked up to him, their eyes meeting again.
"I'll always be here for you, Luke. We've been surprised but we're still standing." he said, Lucas smiling, the young man moving forward hugging Gideon to him, the man smiling, patting his back.
"I promise you no more surprises shall come from Mr. Waterman." he said, Gideon nodding.
He saw the returned calmness in Lucas' violet pools, the young man again focused.
"I want to see Jake tonight, Gideon. I want to say my goodbyes." Lucas said, the young lawyer nodding, Josh and Justin looking at Lucas with love, Lance quietly watching him as well.
"We'll go later this evening. He's being cremated and then quietly buried tomorrow, as per your wishes."
Lucas nodded, the young man moving back to the table, sitting down beside Josh, everyone staring at him.
The door of the room opened, Joey and the two Chrises walking in with paper bags, Chris Pine smiling at Lucas.
"They just delivered our lunches. Italian food." he said, Lucas smiling at him.
"Awesome. I am actually hungry." he said, Joey smiling at him as they sat the bags down on the table.
Alain walked up to Finn and Skyler, his hand in Harry's.
Finn's blue eyes met Alain's brown, the black man smiling at him.
"What's all this nonsense with people calling you Frankie, Finny?" he said, Finn immediately blushing, Skyler smiling.
The quietness was broken by laughter, all eyes going to Lucas, the young man laughing, Colton smiling at him.
"It's alive! It's alive!" he laughed, pointing at Finn, Colton joining him, Finn blushing more.
Sklyer kissed his cheek, their eyes meeting him.
"Might as well tell him, babe. Our monster of love." she said, Finn smiling at her.
"I guess I really am that." he smiled, his hand going to Alain's shoulder, Harry smiling at the Welshman.
"I've got more ammo for you, Alain. Try not to shoot me down too much!"
Lucas laughed again, everyone smiling at his now good mood.
They all began to open the paper bags, diving into the welcomed food.
Finn and Alain sat down together, Lucas smiling as his friend began to talk.
No one saw Grayson quietly walk out of the conference room.
Lucas wiped his lips, smiling around him.
His violet pools met Grayson's blue, the older lawyer smiling at him.
He'd just returned as lunch had ended, Emerson asking his old friend where he'd disappeared to.
"A few calls to make, Emerson. Your vast empire needs constant attention."
Lucas smiled at him, handing the lawyer a plastic tray of lasagne and a Caesar salad.
"Thank you, Lucas." he smiled, Lucas smiling back.
"No, thank you for looking after my family's interests always, Gray." he said, Grayson smiling at him, then at Tristan and Emerson.
"I love this family, Lucas. I honor all of you with my steadfast loyalty."
"And we all take it in with loving grace, Gray." Emerson said, Francesca smiling at the lawyer as well.
Grayson smiled, his blue eyes on Lucas.
"Loyalty and honor are only two parts of a man's heart, Gray." Lucas smiled, the older man nodding at him.
"What did I miss?" he said, Lucas smiling around at everyone.
"Only Finn's revealed monstrous mirthfulness. Alain's still laughing." Josh smiled, looking towards the black man, he and Harry seated beside Finn and Skyler, the Welshman's face showing a wide smile.
Alain had laughed loudly for a few minutes, Finn blushing but smiling beside him.
"Oh that's precious! And such ammo for me!" Alain grinned, Finn smiling at him.
The black man had smiled at him, Finn staring into his brown eyes.
"The monster of our hearts indeed." Alain had said, Finn smiling more.
"From one monster to another, I'll try not to shame you too much. All given in love, Frankie." Alain had whispered into his ear, the Welshman laughing.
"I am the monster of my love's heart. But try to keep your hands to yourself, Alain." he smiled, Alain laughing loudly again.
"I've always had a fetish for tweaking electrodes." he grinned, Finn laughing.
Lucas smiled at both of them, the young man looking around the room after lunch.
His violet pools met Adam's and Usher's, the two men smiling at him, Usher's arm around Adam's chair.
"You also missed the hidden love and happiness, Gray. It surrounds us always. Right, Adam and Ush?" Lucas smiled, sipping at a Styrofoam cup of coffee.
Usher and Adam traded looks, everyone looking at them.
Adam sat up in his chair, his blue eyes staring into Lucas' violet pools.
"You know, don't you?" he said, Lucas smiling at him.
"Love always is drawn to me, my friends. It engages
the most opening hearts."
Usher smiled, his arm going around his Adam.
"Engaged we are. Adam's agreed to be mine." the black man said, Adam smiling widely, raising his hand and showing off the ring laying there.
Everyone smiled, beginning to clap, the two singers suddenly surrounded by everyone, pulled out of their chairs, hugged and kissed by everyone.
Justin and Lance both smiled at both men after they'd hugged both, Adam smiling at both.
"The past. . .my friends. . .I. . ." he softly said, Justin moving forward and kissing his cheek.
"The past is over, Adam. The love's enough now." he said, Lance smiled, his arm going around his man.
"It's a beautiful thing, engaged love is. It's the greater moment of our hearts." he said, the two men smiling at him, Adam's blue eyes meeting Lucas' violet pools, the young man having walked up to both.
"Love wins any heart when that heart always held love. We all see it shining in both of your eyes." he said, Adam tearing up.
"Thank you, Lucas!" he said, the man moving, Lucas hugging him tightly, the man's head against his chest.
Usher smiled at Lucas, the young man smiling back.
"You're both welcome. Anything for love, I'll always give." he smiled, Josh's arm going around him as Adam stepped back.
Both men saw the wide, loving smile on his handsome face.
"When this is all done we both want to celebrate your happiness." Josh smiled, both singers smiling, their arms around each other.
"Thanks, guys. Thank you all." Usher said, everyone smiling, the two wrapped in their welcoming friendship.
Lucas smiled, Josh kissing his cheek.
"Let's relax, babe. We've got an hour before court resumes." Josh smiled, Lucas smiling at him.
"Here with everyone watching, my love?" he said, Josh blushing.
"That's not relaxing, babe. That's heaven."
Lucas laughed, Josh smiling at his good mood.
"Heaven indeed. I'll walk heaven's path later
tonight. Cherubs and angels surrounding me."
Lance and Justin both smiled, Finn smiling at them.
The group relaxed again, Adam and Usher in the center of the conversation, Lucas settling back into his man's arms, their love close and open in private.
Judge Navarro looked out into the courtroom, his eyes meeting two other staring pools.
"You may continue, Mr. Waterman."
The D.A. stood again, looking towards Lucas' table.
"The court calls to the stand, Mr. Levi Strassman."
Gideon's blue pools looked at Lucas, the young man leaning towards him, whispering softly.
Josh's blue pools behind them followed the young man walking down the aisle to the witness stand, his eyes darkening.
Lucas turned back, his love shining in his violet pools, staring into his soulmate's two blue pools of protective love.
The man sat down after taking the oath, looking over towards Lucas' table.
"Please state your profession, Mr. Strassman." the D.A. said, looking at the handsome younger man.
"I am a lawyer, sir. I was Jacob Addison's legal
Lucas stared at the young lawyer, remembering his last appearance.
"When was the last time you had contact with your client, sir?" the D.A. said, the young man looking at him.
"About a week before his death, sir."
"And what was that meeting for?" he said, the lawyer smiling at him.
"Mr. Addison was getting his affairs in order, sir. He'd just come into a windfall and wanted to enlist my help in investing it for the future." the man said, the D.A. nodding.
"A future he didn't know wasn't going to last. In any way." the lawyer said, Gideon looking at him with soft judgment.
The D.A. smiled, looking back at the young lawyer on the witness stand.
"Have you met Mr. Carver-Belmont before, sir?"
"Yes, sir. We had a meeting about three months ago." Levi Strassman said, looking towards Lucas.
"And what was that meeting about? Was Jacob Addison in attendance?"
"Yes, Jacob was there. As were others. It was a litigation meeting between two sides of debating resolve."
"A litigation? Was the defendant in legal trouble?"
The young lawyer looked at Lucas, his blue pools looking past him, staring at Adam Levine staring back at him.
"Jacob Addison was suing Lucas Carver for his
The crowd murmured, the D.A. looking towards the jury.
"For his music?"
"Jacob had been under the understanding that he'd written the songs Lucas had recorded for his band's album." Levi said, the D.A. nodding.
"That would have been a challenging worry for Mr. Carver-Belmont. I take it he wasn't happy with that litigation?" the lawyer said, looking towards Lucas' table, Gideon staring at the lawyer.
"No sir, he wasn't. He organized a meeting between my client and myself. Jacob and myself walked into a fabricated ambush." Levi said, Lucas staring at him.
"A fabricated ambush, sir?" the D.A. said, looking at the younger lawyer.
"Yes, sir. It was supposed to be a meeting between Jacob and Lucas alone. Lucas had the place filled with his friends and family. Jacob and I walked into a well set-up event."
"And what was the result of that event?" the D.A. said, Levi looking at him.
"The result was my client ending up in the pool there. Lucas Carver threw him into the pool."
Waterman showed a look of surprise, looking towards the jury.
"The defendant attacked Mr. Addison?" he said, Levi nodding.
"Yes, sir. When Jacob was backed into a corner, Mr. Carver took it upon himself to give the young man a lesson. He was very quick and forceful. The end result was Jacob becoming wet. Lucas Carver told him to leave and never come back. He said it would be the last day he lived if he ever did."
"That's a lie!" Lance said, rising from his seat, the judge banging his gavel, staring at him.
"Order in the court! Sit down sir!" the judge said, staring at Lance, Justin half rising, pulling Lance back into his seat.
"I was there! Lucas said no such thing!" Lance said, the judge looking at him again.
"Keep that up sir and I'll charge you with disturbance. The jury will disregard the intrusion." the judge said, looking towards the jury, then at Lance again.
Lance lowered his eyes, Justin quietly looking at him.
"I'm sorry, Your Honor." Lance said, looking at the judge again.
"I'll have decorum in this courtroom! Another outburst like that and I'll clear it!" he said, Lucas looking back behind him at Lance.
His green eyes met his violet, Lucas smiling softly at him.
Lance calmed, remaining silent.
His eyes met Justin's, his lover smiling at him as well.
The reporters were all staring at the two singers, Justin calming Lance.
"You may continue, Mr. Waterman." the judge said, the D.A. looking at the lawyer again.
"So Lucas was angered by Jacob Addison's attempt at
taking his music from him?"
"Yes, sir. He was that." Levi said, the D.A. nodding.
"Have the victim's affairs been sorted out, sir? Did he have a will?" the D.A. said, the younger lawyer nodding.
"Yes, sir. He had had it finished days before he died. It wasn't that great of a document, the young man having no immediate family to leave his money to. Not that there was any left." Levi said, the D.A. staring at him.
"Jacob Addison was broke?"
"Well, no sir. Not in the reality of what I'd witnessed a week before his death. Today he's officially broke. But not of his own doing."
"What do you mean, sir?" the D.A. said, looking at the younger lawyer again, then at the jury.
"The week before Jacob's death I had met with him,
as I stated. We went over his financial assets. The young man had come into a
large sum of money recently. He had had me invest it for him for about two
months. On that final meeting between us he'd had myself consolidate it into one
lump sum, creating a separate account for its entirety."
"You mean he put all his money into one account? How much did he have at that time, sir?"
The young lawyer looked around the room, at the jury, and then towards Lucas' table.
"On that date he had in excess of one million dollars in that account."
"And now sir?" the D.A. said, looking at the lawyer with soft staged surprise.
"I took care of the deceased's affairs, sir. That account now has only twenty seven dollars in it. Someone emptied it the day after Jacob Addison's death."
The spectator's gallery murmured with surprise, the judge banging his gavel again.
"Did you do any investigating on that disappearance, Mr. Strassman?" The D.A. said, Levi looking at him.
"Yes, I did, sir. As Mr. Addison's legal representative I went over all of it. The money was taken out of Mr. Addison's account the day after his death, through a online bank transaction."
"Where did the money go, Mr. Strassman? Where was it transferred to?" the lawyer said, Levi Strassman looking towards Lucas' table.
"It was transferred into another bank account here
in a Los Angeles bank."
"And who's name is on that account, sir?" the D.A. said, looking towards the jury again.
"Lucas Carver's name, sir. The account was set up by Belmont Industries under Lucas Carver's name."
End of Chapter 123
Another chapter of revealing surprises.
Seems the cards are stacked against Lucas.
Fingerprinted murderous bats and now stolen money.
Where did Jake come by all that dough?
And what happened to it?
The scent of Belmont Industries lingers around that money.
Is Haven involved in this?
Grayson disappeared for a moment, perhaps he'd clued into that as well.
The drama surrounds Lucas.
Up next: The trial continues.
And Lucas says a final farewell to his past.
In more ways than one.