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"Spot on, Lukey!" Finn yelled, his friend smiling at him from the other side of the stage.
"We nailed it on the first fly through, Finny." Lucas yelled back, smiling as he waited for the stagehands to unhitch his wire harness.
Skyler and Trish both smiled, setting down their guitars on their stands, the two walking towards Lucas.
"That's all of it, Luke." Paul, the stage roadie said, pulling off the last of the harness that crossed Lucas' chest.
"I felt like I was wearing a Wonder bra."
The man laughed, Lucas grinning at him.
"Well technically it does give support, Luke."
The young man laughed, his violet eyes looking towards his bandmates as they walked toward him, Finn already free of his wire harness.
The four had run through the more theatrical and technical aspects of Canyon of Love, the two men having been flying overhead at the end of the song, suspended by the harnesses.
"It's great to be back into the swing of things, Lukey!" Finn grinned, Lucas smiling at his friend.
It was late Friday afternoon, the group in Chicago, the first venue of their
rescheduled tour dates.
The next two weeks would be busy, vocal and intense.
All four were greatly looking forward to it.
"You have to be careful, Lukey! You almost collided with me up there." Finn grinned, his arms going around his girlfriend, kissing her cheek.
"I'll try to make sure that if I do it'll be from behind,
Might as well give you a thrill."
Finn laughed, winking at Lucas, the young man smiling back.
"Promises, promises!" he retorted, Lucas smiling with love.
"Where's Justin? he said he'd be here before the
last rehearsal." Lucas said, pulling off his white t-shirt, wiping his sweaty
chest with it, Finn doing the same.
A girl from costumes came up to them, smiling at both, handing each a towel and clean black t-shirt, her eyes scanning both of their muscled, slim physiques.
"Ya can't touch, Barbara. But we love giving you a thrill." Finn winked, the young woman blushing, then smiling.
"Eye candy is eye candy, Finn." she smiled, Skyler smiling at her, no jealousy showing in her blue eyes.
"Wait till he starts to shed." she said, everyone laughing, Finn blushing as he covered his hairy chest.
"I keep it trimmed, babe. And you know that." he said, smiling at his girlfriend, Sky smiling and kissing his lips.
"The downy fields of heaven." she smiled, Finn smiling at her, his eyes glancing towards Lucas.
Barbara smiled, Lucas smiling at her.
"Have you seen Justin, Barb? He was supposed to meet us for the last rehearsal." Lucas said, the lady smiling at him.
"He called about ten minutes ago, Luke. Running a bit late, I'm afraid. He said for the four of you to chill and go over your scales."
All four nodded, Finn smiling at Lucas as the young woman smiled at them all, walking away with their sweaty white t-shirts and towels in her hands.
"Not even here and he's being a slave driver." Finn chuckled, Lucas smiling at him.
"The last few days have done him good, Finny. He's focused on something." Skyler said, Finn nodding.
"Yeah, he's almost back to his old self. I think he owes a big part of that to Lance and Josh. They've made him smile all week." Trish said, her eyes looking towards Lucas, the young man quietly tucking his t-shirt in his pants.
"Josh loves Justin, Trishy. He's being the friend he always was. Justin needs that now." Lucas said, Trish smiling and kissing his cheek.
"I know, Lukey. But what about Lance?" she said, Lucas lowering his eyes.
"He's Justin's friend, too, Trishy. He's even as close as my Josh."
Trish nodded, her eyes meeting Finn's.
"I think Lance wants to be even closer, Luke." the man said, Lucas' eyes raising and looking at Finn.
The three bandmates smiled at Lucas, the man looking softly surprised.
"We're young but we're not naive, Luke. We all see Lance's looks towards Justin, and his caring for him. Justin's been coming back to himself mostly because of him. Josh is just being his friend. We believe Lance is in love with Justin." Skyler said, Lucas blushing.
"I'm sorry, guys. It wasn't my place to tell you. I hope you understand that." he said, Trish's arms going around her brother.
"Something tells me you had something to do with this." she said, Skyler and Finn both smiling at their friend, Lucas softly blushing, his usual reluctance showing.
Trish leaned over, kissing his cheek.
"Our ever-giving, ever-loving, Lukey. Your heart guides all to love and happiness." she said, Lucas smiling, his violet eyes glancing at Finn, the man quietly staring at him.
"I like to see people happy, Trishy. Lance and Justin mirrored each other's souls. I just thought the two of them could find happiness in each other's arms."
Finn walked up to his friend his arm going around Lucas' shoulder.
"What's Justin's view on that, Luke?"
"Lance has always had deep feelings for Justin, everyone. I saw that easily in his soul. And Justin needs a deeper, giving, healing love. Lance has walked the path Justin was forced to walk. In each other they can find a greater peace and acceptance. I think Lance will be wonderful for Justin. That man is so lonely. I think Lance will fill the loneliness and perhaps give Justin all he needs."
Everyone smiled, Finn kissing Lucas' cheek.
"I'm glad I'm already taken. I'd hate to see how devious you'd be with me."
Lucas chuckled, kissing Finn on the cheek, the man smiling at him.
"Well I know Joan Collins is free, she could always use another young gigolo."
Everyone burst into laughter, Lucas smiling at his friend, Finn blushing again.
"You're amazing, Lukey! Simply amazing!" Finn laughed, Lucas smiling around at all three.
"I only ask that you keep this to yourselves, everyone. Lance and Justin need to find their love on their own. And when they have they'll show that love to all of us."
All three nodded, Trish kissing her brother's cheek again.
"I always felt you brought Drew and me together
Lucas. In some way you guided us to each other's love."
Lucas shook his head no.
"No, Trish. That was your own souls finding each other. The love you both have pulled itself together. I had no say in that." Lucas said, Trish smiling at him.
"I think we should run through our falsettos, Finny. We don't want the master mad at us." Lucas said, Finn laughing.
"No, we don't want that." he grinned, Lucas smiling at him.
"A Timberlake shellacking I don't need. He hits hard." Lucas said, rubbing his ass, all four bursting into laughter.
"You wish, Lukey! You kinky pervert!" Finn said, patting Lucas' back.
Lucas laughed, the four walking back to their instruments and the backup musicians.
Josh smiled, the man walking behind Lucas and Justin, the two men in quiet discussion about something, Josh quietly walking behind them.
On two occasions he'd seen their hands touch each other's, their eyes meeting, Justin smiling at Lance.
They'd arrived at the arena, the three walking up to the offices, Justin having a discussion with some promoters and executives, Josh and Lance quietly listening.
From what Josh could hear from the execs and the other men, they were all ecstatic that Orion was once again on tour.
Josh heard a lot of praise and happiness coming from all of them.
Justin smiled at them, the man discussing venues, details and other management business.
Within half an hour they'd left the offices, the three walking down towards the arena, through the corridors behind the stage areas.
Josh smiled again, seeing Lance's hand go into Justin's, their hidden love softly boiling over.
When they'd reached the back entrance, their hands had separated, Lance opening the door for Justin and Josh.
"They should be done with most of the rehearsals, and perhaps going through the final vocal exercises I told them to do." Justin said, Josh smile widening.
Ahead of them somewhere waited his love.
Josh's pace increased a bit, the man moving around Justin and Lance, the two smiling at each other.
"He'll be cooled down by now, Joshy. Luke won't be all sweaty." Lance said, Josh turning his head and blushing, his pace slowing.
"Sorry, didn't mean to look anxious. I just haven't seen him all day. He left at seven this morning." Josh said, Justin smiling, his hand going to Josh's shoulder in front of him.
"I'm sure he's missing you, too."
Josh smiled, looking into Justin's blue eyes.
"Music is his soul, Josh. He's been singing nonstop all week. You know it is his passion."
Josh smiled, knowing the truth in that.
"Among other things. Myself included." Josh beamed, Lance smirked.
"The music comes from your love, Joshy. Luke told me you're his inspiration." Justin said, Josh smiling at him as he opened the next door, allowing Justin and Lance to walk ahead of him.
"He's already writing other songs, Jus." Josh said, Justin smiling.
"Great. I know they won't be a one hit wonder. The first album is gold. The next will be platinum." Justin said, Josh hearing Justin's confidence in his man's creativity.
"Lucas puts his love to music. That can't do anything but shine." Lance said, Josh smiling at his two friends, their eyes and smiles meeting again.
"Don't I know it, Lancy. Look at the songs he's given me." Josh said, Justin smiling at his friend.
He saw the look of musical worship in Josh's blue eyes, knowing his friend's heart was musically enriched.
"His music will ignite all of our souls, Joshy. I can't wait to record that song with you." Justin said, Josh smiling at him as they walked forward.
The three walked through a door reading Stage Area 1B, the three walking up a flight of steps, walking out onto a large stage, an empty seat-filled arena surrounding it.
The stage was busy with people, stagehands and roadies assembling background sets and wiring large amplifiers.
In the stage's center seven people sat, Orion and its backup musicians going through acoustic music.
Lucas' back was to the approaching three, Finn's smile meeting theirs.
"Hey, Carver! I said to do falsettos, not acoustics!" Justin yelled, Lucas smiling and turning.
"Our voices are perfect, Timberlake! Our instruments need the work. And you're late!" he retorted, Justin smiling as he, Josh and Lance walked up to the group.
"I'm the boss, I can choose my own hours." Justin smirked, his blue eyes meeting Lucas' violet.
"And we're Orion. We expect our management to be on time. Just for that we're going on strike." Lucas said, folding his arms, Justin staring at him.
"You can't strike without picket signs, Carver." Justin said, smirking at him.
Lucas stood up, his eyes going to Justin's jean-covered center.
"Well, I'd say you have the timber to cut us off a few. But they wouldn't be very big signs with toothpicks."
Everyone burst into laughter, Justin blushing, then laughing with them.
"I've never had complaints, Carver."
Lucas smiled, looking into his friend's blue pools of mirthfulness.
"Well, Josh has upgraded. Double the fun, right Beamy?" he said, Justin blushing again, the laughter around him friendly.
Josh's arms went around Lucas, the two laughing and smiling at each other.
"You're fantastic, Lucky!" Josh laughed, looking around at all the surrounding people.
The urge to kiss his lover filled Josh's need, the man realizing they were in public.
"Hold that thought, Joshy." Justin said, smiling at his friend.
Justin pulled out his cell phone, calling someone.
He talked for a few moments, hanging up the phone.
"The tour production staff are on their way down." he said, Josh looking at him with confusion, Lucas at his side staring quietly at Justin, the man winking at him.
Justin walked over to an amplifier, picking up a microphone that lay on top of it, adjusting its volume, turning it up.
"Could I have everyone's attention, please?" he said into the microphone, his melodic voice carrying across the arena.
Everyone stopped what they were doing, Justin smiling around at everyone.
"We're going to have an impromptu meeting here on stage in thirty minutes. All hands on deck, please. " he said, everyone nodding, setting down their tools and going back to work, some talking amongst themselves.
"What's going on, Justin?" Lance said, Justin smiling at him.
"We're getting organized. Through friendship and music." he said, smiling at everyone.
"Could Orion please come with me? I need to have a private meeting with all of you first."
Everyone nodded, Justin walking towards the stage exit, Orion, Josh and Lance following.
The seven people were all seated on couches and chairs, relaxing in a private office, Justin standing at the room's closed door.
Andrew had met them in the hallway, the young lawyer having arrived moments before.
He and Trish lay cuddled in an armchair, kissing lightly.
Josh and Lucas had been kissing since they'd closed the door of the room, the two alone finally, their love erupting.
"Tone it down, guys. Geez, you'd think you'd been away from each other for months!" Finn said, Skyler looking at him.
"Maybe I'll leave for a day and we'll see your reaction." she said, Finn softly blushing.
"Sorry, my love. I know I'd practically molest you."
Everyone laughed, Skyler blushing, Finn kissing her lips.
"The love continues." Justin said, the couples breaking their kisses, all eyes looking at him.
"Before we go back on tour I need to clear up a few things." Justin said, smiling at everyone, everyone seeing that he looked relaxed.
"First off I want to thank all of you for your
friendship and love over the last few days. I'm getting back to myself, your
love a healing part of that."
Everyone smiled at him, Justin's eyes glancing at Lance.
Everyone smiled, seeing Lance's returned look.
"Before we head out on the road again, I need to be totally honest with myself, and with you all."
Everyone nodded, Josh looking at Justin with friendship.
"Let's start with the night you were shot, Lucas." Justin said, Lucas nodding at him, his violet pools meeting his blue irises.
"I know it wasn't Josh Bryce was after that night, Lucas. I know he was wanting to kill me."
Josh looked with surprise at his friend, Lucas' hand going to Josh's shoulder.
"I know all of you, as the giving, loving friends you are. We share a bond of friendship, loyalty and trust. I trust all of you enough to tell you the truth."
Everyone stared at Justin, his eyes meeting Josh's.
Lucas now saw the reluctance in Justin's eyes, the man focusing on his friend again.
"What happened that night was in fact my
Josh stared at Justin with surprise, the man's eyes glancing towards Lucas.
"The man who shot you the other night wasn't there to shoot you, Lucas. He was there to shoot me."
Everyone but Josh and Lucas looked surprised, all eyes going to his calm, focused face.
"That man was Bryce Hartwell, Josh's former boyfriend. Josh and he had been in an intense relationship for over four years. That relationship was filled with lies, hurt and deceit. It took Joey and myself to expose the man for what he was. A liar and thief."
Everyone stared at Josh, the man's eyes lowering, Lucas' arms going around him, everyone seeing Lucas' love for the man, those truths known to him.
"That man is still in love with you, Josh. And he's angry at me. For I did something I'm not proud of. And his anger that night almost cost Lucas his life. It's because of me that you almost died, Luke." Justin said, his eyes showing tears.
Lucas moved from Josh's arms, rising from his seat, his lover watching him walk up to Justin.
Lucas' hand went to Justin's shoulder, staring into his wet blue eyes.
"Life is fate, Justin. I never will blame you for what happened. That lays at the hands of Bryce Hartwell. His emotions guided him to that final moment."
"No, Lucas. It was I that guided him to it. For the
anger he felt in his soul was justified. It was me he wanted to kill that
night. And he had good reason."
Lucas stared at Justin, the young man's violet eyes going around to everyone, returning to Justin's blue.
"You've carried a lot of guilt in your soul for a long time, Justin. I think it's time you were totally free of it. You didn't do what you think you did. The blame for that lays solely at Bryce's feet."
Justin looked confused, Lucas smiling at him with love.
"Come here, Josh. Please." Lucas said, Josh rising from his seat, walking up to his lover and friend.
"Josh, I love you. Justin loves you as well. He's
carried a secret in his soul for many years. A fateful secret that in the end
created a path of uncertainty. That path still remains clouded. But the souls
upon it need to find their own lives. That starts with being honest to each
other. Tell Josh the truth, Justin."
Justin stared at Lucas, seeing the knowledge and love shining in his violet eyes.
Justin's blue eyes moved to Josh's uncertain blue, the man softly sighing.
"I. . .I slept with Bryce, Josh. About a year before he showed his true colors."
Josh looked stunned, staring at his friend.
"What. . .what are you saying, Justin? You. . .you slept with Bryce while we were together?" he said, a soft anger suddenly filling his voice.
"Yes, Josh. I. . .I slept with him." Justin said, lowering his eyes.
"How. . .how could you, Justin?! You. . .you knew what he meant to me! What kind of backstabbing slut are you?" Josh said, the anger now showing in his face.
Lucas' hand went to Josh's shoulder, their eyes meeting.
"Let go of the anger, my love. It isn't justified. Justin would never hurt you on purpose, Josh."
Josh's eyes went to Lucas' violet, seeing calm love shining there.
His eyes turned to Justin, seeing the man's lowered eyes, a look of defeat showing on his face.
Lance moved from beside Trish and Skyler, the man walking up to Justin, his hand going to the man's shoulder.
"What. . .what did Bryce do to you, Justin?" Lance said, Justin raising his head.
Justin stared into Lance's loving green eyes, knowing in his soul he could tell him the truth.
"He was. . .he was the first, Lance. The first who. . .who used me."
Lance's eyes met Lucas', the young man's hand going to Justin's shoulder.
"He played you, didn't he, Justin?"
Justin lowered his eyes, nodding.
"Yes, Luke. One night at a party he put something into my drink, then drove me home. . .and then used me."
Josh stared at Justin in shock, his eyes meeting Lucas', his lover showing truth in his violet eyes.
"Justin was being blackmailed by Bryce, Josh. He set it all up one night, the man wanting him. Bryce played him that night and then videotaped all of it. And then he started blackmailing Justin, using him for his own twisted needs."
Justin's head was lowered, Josh staring at him, seeing the truth on his emotional face.
"Justin was nothing but your friend throughout that ordeal, Josh. And in the end, he chose to risk his own revealed indiscretions, to free you from that man's clutches. For he saw that man's true self. He knew one day he'd perhaps do the same to you. Justin--with Joey's aid--freed you from that man's territorial ambitions. He got Bryce away from you, robbing him of one of his meal tickets. But not all of them. Am I correct, Justin?"
Justin's head raised, Lucas staring at him.
"So deep is the love you have for your best friend, Justin. So deep is the love you have for my Joshua." Lucas said, the young man staring at Justin.
"How long have you been paying him, Justin?"
Justin looked stunned, Josh staring in shock at Lucas as well.
Justin's head lowered again, Lance staring at him.
"I. . .I couldn't let him near you again, Josh. I've paid him to stay away. He's been blackmailing me for years. He never gave me the videotapes." Justin said, Josh staring at him in shock.
Lucas looked at Josh, his hand going to Justin's shoulder again.
"The payments stop now, Justin. You gave your honour, your dignity and then your soul to save my Josh from that man's deceit. The truth is free, the pain is over. You and Josh are both free of that man's lies."
Justin raised his head, the tears showing, Josh staring at his friend.
"I can't not pay, Lucas! He's got tapes of me. . .of us. . .of the great Justin Timberlake being his bitch!"
Lucas' hand squeezed Justin's shoulder.
"No he doesn't, Jus."
Justin looked surprised, staring into Lucas' violet eyes.
"My magic travels far, Justin. He has nothing on you but static. You are free of his torment, and of his deceit. Both of you are. No one blackmails my friends."
Justin's eyes moved, staring into Lucas' eyes, then turning and staring into Josh's blue pools.
"I'm. . .I'm sorry, Josh. He. . .he wouldn't let me free. He. . .he was so hurtful. I had to get him away from you! I. . .I couldn't let him do to you what he did to me! I'm so sorry!"
Josh moved forward, enveloping his friend into his arms, his tearing blue eyes staring at Lucas, Lucas' love showing on his face.
"Why didn't you tell me, Jus? I would have believed you."
"I was scared. You were so in love with him. He was so devious, so manipulative. We. . .he made me.."
Josh rubbed his back, Justin calming down.
Everyone stared at him, their eyes filled with tears.
"It's okay, Jus. I love you." Josh said, hugging his friend close, Lucas smiling at him.
"The love you showed after Bryce's leaving showed the real you, Justin. I felt your love for me. And now I see it was total."
Justin raised his head, Josh wiping the tears from his cheeks.
"I always loved you, Josh. I would never
have. . .never have interfered in your love for him."
"I know, Jus. I know the loving man you are. You're my friend and I know your love."
Justin smiled, wiping his own eyes, Josh rubbing his shoulder.
Justin's eyes went to Lucas'.
"You were caught in a situation not of your doing, Justin. That man was nothing but deceitful, and hurtful. He's out of your life and my Joshua's. No one hurts those I love. I'll always protect all of you."
"Lucas, you. . .you walked in front of me that night. You risked your life for. . .for me."
Lucas smiled, staring into Justin's blue eyes.
"You're my friend and I love you. I love all of you. I'd do the same for any of you."
Everyone teared up, Lucas' arms going around his man, Josh smiling at him.
"The past is the past, everyone. We go forward with happiness and our love for each other."
Justin smiled, wiping his eyes, looking around at everyone.
"There's something else you need to know." he said, everyone smiling at him, Josh's hand going to his friend's shoulder, Justin smiling at him, Josh's eyes looking towards Lance.
"We all see your blossoming love, you two. I couldn't be happier for both of you." he said, Justin and Lance both showing surprise.
Lucas smiled at both, Justin and Lance both staring at him.
"You've both been walking around with revealing eyes, guys. What I've known for a long time everyone else has just clued into."
Justin blushed, Lance's hand going in his.
"We're going slow. Justin's love I'll wait for. Our friendship hopefully will turn into something more." Lance said, Justin smiling at him.
"I was going to say that Lance and I are entering into a relationship. It's new to me, Lance's love I mean. The newness of his real love. But it's warming my heart. I'm seeing him in a different light." Justin said, Lance smiling at him.
"Put on the high beams, Justin. Lance is totally smitten with you." Finn said, Lucas laughing, Lance blushing.
Justin smiled, leaning over and kissing Lance's cheek, the man smiling at him, his blushing gone.
"I know, Finny. He's shown me all of his heart. Mine is opening up to that new love." Justin said, Lance smiling more.
Justin's eyes went back to Lucas and Josh, both men smiling at both of them.
"I just wanted to set the record straight, on my past and on my future." Justin said, his blue eyes meeting Lance's green.
"I think the past won't hold a candle to my future."
Lance beamed, Lucas smiling at Justin.
"So my record's straight, it's time yours was." Justin said, smiling at Orion, Lucas' eyes showing confusion.
"Come with me, everyone." Justin smiled, walking to the door, everyone shaking their heads, following him out of the room.
The group returned to the stage area, all of them walking through the door, climbing the steps.
Everyone walked up onto the stage, a large contingency of people waiting for them in a circle.
Justin smiled around at everyone, everyone smiling back.
"Gather round, everyone. Orion, you stand in the circle's center. You too, Joshy." Justin said, taking charge, his friends looking at him, walking into the center of the group, Josh at Lucas' side.
Once the group was encircled completely, Justin walked into the circle's center.
"Hello, everyone. I just wanted to take a few minutes and get all of us up to speed on everything. As you all know and have heard--through various gossip and media pandering--our favourite band here has had a little drama lately. Our dear friend Lucas was shot outside my restaurant last week. He's now fully recovered from his injuries and back with all of us."
Everyone began to clap, Lucas shyly smiling around at everyone, the young man seeing a lot of tears in people's eyes.
He saw a lot of love and compassion in those staring eyes, too.
"We're a family, we care about all that are in our group. I don't have to speak of contracts, or privacy issues, we all are family and trust each other."
Everyone smiled, nodding at Justin, his eyes going to the group.
"We're again embarking on a road tour, Orion's
music our shining center. And before we begin this journey we need to be open,
honest friends. I'd like to tell you the truth of what happened last week. The
gossip doesn't hold justice to what really happened."
Everyone smiled at Justin, the man walking up to the band, his hand going to Lucas's shoulder, the man staring at him.
"Last week, our friend Lucas almost gave the ultimate sacrifice. He risked his life to save myself and my best friend Josh."
Everyone looked surprised, Lucas staring at Justin.
Josh stared at Justin, his friend smiling at him, his eyes lowering for a moment.
Justin raised his eyes, meeting Josh's blue, Lucas' violet pools staring at Justin.
"My best friend Josh has always been my dearest friend. We've weathered years of musical happiness and joining friendship. I once promised you years ago that I would always look out for you. I never imagined that I would have to guard you against such deceit, Josh."
Josh nodded, staring at Justin.
"May I tell them the truth of your own soul, Josh?"
Josh nodded again, the man feeling Lucas' hand going into his.
"My best friend Josh, is in love with Lucas. The two are partners in love." Justin said, everyone around them showing surprise, some faces showing soft smiles, as if that news wasn't so new.
Lucas squeezed Josh's hand, their eyes meeting, Josh smiling at him.
"Justin is correct. I love Lucas." Josh said, Lucas smiling at him, the people around them suddenly breaking into applause, that applause increasing, as were their smiles.
Josh's eyes met Lucas', the young man smiling at him.
"You can't hide that face of love, my angel. I think they already knew."
Josh smiled, pulling Lucas into his arms, kissing him deeply, the applause rising.
Skyler, Finn and Trish were grinning, Finn raising his hands, goading the group into more applause.
"They're right randy! We need hoses!" he yelled, everyone laughing, the two men breaking their kiss, Josh smiling at Finn.
"Sweet! I love my man wet!"
Everyone laughed, Justin smiling at both of them, Lucas' eyes meeting his.
"Yes, Josh and Lucas are in love. I'm sure a lot of you had clued into that fact. As well as the other faces of love shining around you. Trish and her boyfriend, Andrew, the group's legal representative. Finn and Skyler's love shines openly also."
Everyone smiled, staring at the four, Andrew's arms going around Trish.
"This band is love, is the personification of love. Now they can show that love openly, Lucas and Josh the most."
Everyone smiled, Justin's eyes going around to everyone.
"I said I'd tell you the truth of what happened last week. At the end of our run with N*Sync, Josh fell in love with a young man. Josh was hopelessly in love with him. But that man turned out to be a liar, a cheat and a thief. I took it upon myself--with Joey Fatone's help--to reveal that man's indiscretions to Josh. I couldn't stand by and let my friend be used by that man."
Everyone quietly stared at Josh, Lucas' arm going around him.
"I exposed the man's lies, deceit and thievery. He was stealing money from Josh's accounts. So loving was Josh, that he trusted that man completely."
Josh stared at Justin, everyone seeing his calmness.
"That man was thrown out of Josh's life, Josh finally seeing
him for what he was. Josh went on with his life, that path leading him
to Lucas' love. And now my friend has the love I've always wanted him to have.
It's total love. The two are true soulmates."
Everyone smiled, Josh's smile showing for his Lucas, Lucas kissing his cheek in front of everyone.
"That man of lies didn't give up though. In his twisted mind he still carries a need for our Josh. And a twisted hatred for me. For he feels I am the one who ended his relationship with Josh. It was that man who shot Lucas last week."
Everyone stared at Justin, the man staring at his friends.
"Lucas walked in front of a bullet that was meant for me. That man was there that night to kill me."
Lucas moved, walking up to his friend, everyone staring at both men.
"I would risk my life always for a friend. No one hurts my friends."
Everyone smiled as Lucas hugged Justin, clapping going around the arena.
The two men parted, Justin looking around at everyone.
"I met with the police last week. I've informed them of the man's identity. Bryce Hartwell is his name, and he's now a wanted man. Our own security teams have been informed as well. As will all of you today. Pictures of him will be shown, and our security has been increased. We're all going to keep each other safe."
Everyone applauded, Lucas smiling at Justin.
"Our friend here has shown his love, his wanting all of us to be happy. I'm truly happy with his friendship and with all of yours. And most of all with my Josh's love. Today we're in the open, the openness of your friendship." Lucas said, Josh going up to his man, his arm going around him.
"Be prepared for anything, everyone. My Lucky can be very amorous."
Everyone laughed, Lucas softly blushing, Josh kissing his cheek.
Justin smiled at both, looking around at all the staff.
"As I said, we're a family. We all stand together. This man will be found and arrested. And then we can be free of the danger."
Everyone clapped, the four smiling around at their friends.
"Orion's the heart of this tour. Their love is the soul. I feel happy to be included in that love. I'll always thank Lucas for giving me another chance at life."
Lucas smiled, knowing the depth of what those words meant to Justin.
He smiled at his friend, his violet eyes looking around at everyone.
"Let's give them a show they'll never forget. Orion's going to light up the sky!" Lucas grinned, everyone clapping, the crew moving towards all of them, Josh and Lucas pulled into hugs by everyone, Justin smiling as others clapped him on the back, the group showered with protective, giving friendship.
Lucas grabbed his white t-shirt, two arms going around his naked waist, two lips kissing his neck.
"We're in the open, my love. That doesn't mean you can play with the goods for everyone to see." Lucas smiled, Josh smiling and rubbing Lucas' abs.
"We're in your dressing room, babe. A little bit of private heaven in all this openness."
Lucas smiled, Josh's hands going lower, rubbing Lucas' center, the young man wearing only boxer briefs.
"Do you want me going out there in front of thousands with a chubby?"
Josh laughed, squeezing Lucas's bulge.
"That would make a few eyes widen. And more hearts would be lost to your greatness."
Lucas smiled, turning around and pulling Josh close.
"You have dibs on my greatness. And that greatness needs you so bad." Lucas said, his lips going to Josh's, Josh feeling his man's needs.
A knock came to the dressing room door, Lucas' head turning towards it.
"Go away! We're busy!"
The door opened, Finn's head sticking through the crack, smiling at the two.
"Get some clothes on, Lukey! It's almost show time. Tracy's finishing her set."
Lucas glared at Finn, the man smiling and walking into the room.
"Did I interrupt something?" he said, smiling at his friends.
"Only my love's beauty, Finny." Lucas said, sighing and looking at Josh.
"Later, my love. You get dressed. I'll head out and find my seat." Josh said, Lucas smiling at him.
"I'll see you in the darkness, my love."
Josh smiled, Lucas pulling him close again, kissing him deeply.
Finn smiled, lowering his eyes from their private love.
"That'll hold me." Lucas smiled, breaking the kiss, Josh looking lost.
"You just left me wanting more, babe."
Lucas smiled, Josh smiling and walking towards the door, stopping and hugging Finn.
"Good luck out there, Finny. Break a leg." Josh said, Finn smirking and looking at Lucas.
"If it's the third one Lukey's showing, you can
break that yourself."
Josh laughed, Lucas softly blushing, his man blowing him a kiss, Josh walking out of the room, closing the door behind him.
Lucas grabbed his black jeans, pulling them up his legs, the t-shirt still in his hand.
Finn smiled at him, the man wearing a black t-shirt and white jeans.
"Everything's set, Luke. The stage crew's done a fantastic job. The crowd's going to be awed." Finn said, Lucas buttoning his jeans, pulling on his white t-shirt.
The young man smiled, sitting down and pulling on his sneakers, Finn quietly looking at him.
Lucas tied his shoes, standing up and walking up to his friend.
"Lucas, I want to say something." Finn said, Lucas smiling at him.
"I'm proud of you, Lucas. For what's happened today. Your love for Josh we all now see, and your love's now in the open. Well, here anyway, and at home. The next big step will be Josh's coming out to the world."
"I've already told him that he does that on his own,
when he's ready."
Finn smiled, his hand going to his friend's shoulder.
"That's why I'm proud of you, Luke. Your love shines
on its own terms. You take life by the horns. And all our lives are better for
it. Just look at us now. We're singing our music and living our lives."
Lucas smiled, touched by Finn's words.
"Life needs to be lived, Finny."
Finn smiled, Lucas looking into his blue eyes.
"I'm ready to live all of my life, Luke."
Lucas smiled, his arm going around his friend.
"Let's get out there and show our love, my friend."
Finn smiled, taking a deep breath, Lucas smiling at him.
He saw the momentary nerves in Finn's eyes, the young man kissing his cheek.
"Forward to life, Finnegan."
The man smiled, nodding, the two walking out to their awaiting fans.
Josh smiled, seated in a private box to the right of center stage, the man and his friends surrounded by screaming fans.
"They don't let up. The group's won their hearts." Andrew said, Josh smiling at the man seated beside him.
"Their music and love has won over them all, Drew." Lance said, Josh smiling at his friend seated behind him.
The three and Justin had sat watching the band for the last two hours; their energy, happiness and beautiful songs drawing screams from everyone, as well as roaring applause.
Justin had disappeared ten minutes ago, the man called to the backstage by one of the crew.
Lance had looked several times to the stage, wondering where his friend was.
"What's keeping Justin?" he said, leaning into Josh's ear.
"Probably some managerial stuff, Lancy. Your man will be back soon." Josh said, Lance smiling at him.
Drew smiled at both, his blue eyes looking towards the stage as well, the man having watched Trish all evening.
He smiled, the love in his heart shining out towards her.
"Only one song left, and that's Lucas' ballad." Lance said, Josh nodding.
When Lucas sang that song now Josh understood the words more clearly.
For Josh's love had changed the dynamics of the song.
For he knew he had a total claim to that heart.
He smiled, his eyes moving to his left, seeing Justin returning to their box, the man sitting down beside Lance, his green eyes meeting his blue.
"Everything okay, Jus?" Lance said, Justin smiling at him.
"Everything's perfect. Lucas just wanted to ask me something." Justin smiled, Josh looking back at him.
"How's my man doing?"
"He's totally stoked, Joshy. You're going to have an energized tiger on your hands tonight."
Josh smiled, his eyes going back to the dark stage.
"Wouldn't want him any other way. I'm going to be so happy!"
Josh and Lance both smiled, Andrew smirking.
"What was he asking you, Jus?" Lance said, the man seated beside him smiling at him.
"He just wanted me to organize a small celebration." Justin said, sitting back in his seat, his three friends looking towards him.
"To celebrate what?" Josh said, Justin smiling at him.
"Love, Josh. Plus he wanted me to ask you something, Josh."
"Ask me what?" Josh said, turning in his seat.
Justin smiled, leaning forward and whispering in his friend's ear.
Josh's eyes widened in confusion, Justin kissing his cheek, looking around first.
"I told him what your answer would be. Mine was the same. Yes."
Josh nodded his head slowly, Lance looking at Justin.
"What's going on, Justin?" he said, Justin looking into his green pools.
"Look to the stage and it will soon show itself." Justin smiled, the man settling back into his seat, smiling towards the stage.
Everyone looked at him again, their thoughts interrupted by lights coming on before them.
Four spotlights shone on four people standing in the stage's center, Josh's eyes drawn to his lover's beauty.
Lucas stood dead center, the man wearing a white suit, a red rose showing in his left lapel.
To his right Trish stood behind a keyboard, the woman wearing a red dress, a white rose on her left breast.
Andrew's eyes were drawn to her beautiful face.
"She looks so beautiful." he softly said, Josh smiling at his friend beside him.
Finn stood on Lucas' left, the man wearing a white suit as well, a red rose on his lapel.
Skyler stood to his left, the woman standing with a tambourine in her hand, wearing a long red dress as well, a white rose on her breast.
The audience was screaming and clapping, staring forward at their idols.
Lucas smiled, his violet eyes scanning the darkness, Josh seeing them focus on their box.
"Has everyone had a great time?" Lucas said, the fans screaming louder, the applause almost deafening.
Lucas smiled at his friends, Finn quietly looking at him.
"I take that as a yes." Lucas smiled, the fans answering him with more applause and loudness.
"It's been great for us as well. We've seen the happiness on all your faces all evening. Our love echoes in your giving love back."
Applause sounded, the four friends smiling out at their friends.
"We want to end the show tonight in a different way. With a song I've loved for a long time. I asked two dear friends tonight their permission to sing it." Lucas said, his eyes going towards Justin and Josh's box, the crowd following the man's gaze, applause erupting again.
"And I think maybe a surprise is in order as well. Love flows all around us. Orion's light shines bright tonight."
Everyone screamed, Josh seeing their total happiness.
Lucas smiled out at everyone, the man handed a guitar by Dean, the guitarist.
Lucas smiled, looking over at Finn.
"Take it away, Finny. Let your love shine bright." he smiled, Finn smiling at his friend, seeing his love shining at him.
"Sky, if you please." Finn said, extending his hand towards his girlfriend.
Skyler looked confused, Sam taking the tambourine from her hand, smiling at her.
Skyler walked up to Finn, her eyes glancing at Lucas, then out at all their fans.
Finn took her hand in his, guiding her to another spotlight that suddenly appeared ahead of Lucas, a solitary stool sitting in it.
"Sit down, my love." he said, guiding her to the stool, Skyler looking totally confused.
"Tonight I end this night of happiness with my love for you, my angel. We stand in the center of our fans' adoration, in the center of our own band's love. And in the center of our own love." Finn smiled, Skyler blushing, looking out at everyone, a few awws heard, clapping showing again.
Finn looked towards Lucas, the man beginning to play the guitar, Trish smiling and beginning to play the keyboard, the backup musicians adding to the music.
Skyler recognized the song, her blue eyes going to her man's shining blue, Finn smiling at her.
"I love you, Sky. I've changed some of the words to show my love for you."
The crowd recognized the song, a lot of eyes going to the box over their heads.
Finn smiled, his voice filling the arena.
Oh oh. . .
When the visions around you,
Bring tears to your eyes
And all that surround you,
Are my blue eyes
I'll be your strength,
I'll give you hope,
Keeping your faith when it's gone
The one you should call,
Was standing here strong..
And I will take
You in my arms
And hold you right where you belong
Till the day my life is through
This I promise you
This I promise you
Skyler was in tears, her eyes locked on Finn's, the man singing his heart out to her.
Lucas smiled, he and Trish singing the background vocals, their love showing for both of them.
The fans were silent, all taking in the love shining in Finn's eyes.
This song was for his lady, for his love.
And they were all watching that love shining.
I've loved you forever,
In lifetimes before
And I promise you never...
Will you hurt anymore
I give you my word
I give you my heart
This is a battle we've won
And with this vow,
Forever has now begun...
Just close your eyes
Each loving day
I know this feeling won't go away
Till the day my life is through
This I promise you..
This I promise you..
Over and over I fall
When I hear you call
Without you in my life baby
I just wouldn't be living at all...
Finn walked up to Skyler, his hands going in hers, their eyes locked on each other's soul.
Skyler saw her man's love shining through, a large smile on
And I will take
You in my arms
And hold you right where you belong
Till the day my life is through
This I promise you baby
Just close your eyes
Each loving day
I know this feeling won't go away
Every word I say is true
This I promise you
Every word I say is true
This I promise you
Ooh, I promise you...
The arena burst into applause and screaming, the two in the center spotlight lost in their own love.
Lucas smiled behind his friends, the young man moving forward, his eyes meeting his sister's, Trish giving him a thumbs up.
Lucas walked ahead of his two friends, Skyler's head buried in Finn's chest, the emotion of his musical love silencing her with emotion.
Lucas smiled out at the audience, their fans screaming and clapping, Lucas raising his hands, trying to calm them, yelling for silence.
The crowd gradually lowered its enthusiasm, the arena quieting down eventually.
Lucas smiled out into the audience, everyone seeing his smiling happiness.
"A moment of treasured love, shown for all of us. We bask in their love, in their beauty." he said, his eyes going to Finn and Skyler, Finn smiling at him, Skyler looking at her friend with guarded surprise.
"Finn asked for this moment, to show all of you his true love for our beautiful friend. Skyler's love is his soul."
Everyone clapped, Finn smiling out at everyone.
"You have the final moments, Finn. Show our fans your true love. And show our Skyler your soul." Lucas said, the man suddenly disappearing into darkness, the stage going totally dark except for one circle of light, Finn and Skyler in that light's center.
Finn's eyes went to Skyler's blue, his fingers wiping away the tears glistening her cheeks.
"I love you, Sky. You are the sky of my world. The blueness
of your eyes are the sunlight of my soul."
People awwed, crying heard in the crowd, Finn staring into Skyler's blue eyes.
"We're surrounded by our friends and our fans. We are in the open light of each other's love. I love you, Sky. Before them, before each other, and before the world I only have one other thing to say." he said, the man going to one knee before her, Skyler's eyes widening, the crowd gasping.
Finn pulled a ring from his white suit pocket, Skyler staring at its diamond brightness.
Finn's face wore a wide smile of total love.
"Will you marry me, Sky? Will you be the sunshine of my life, the mother of my child and the center of my soul forever?"
Skyler stared into Finn's blue eyes, seeing the total love shining there.
She also saw the truth in what he'd now done.
This quiet--now revealed romantic--giving, loving man had stood in front of the world and stated his love for her.
She smiled, her hand going to his shoulder.
"I love you, Finny. Yes, I'll marry you. I love you." she cried, Finn on his feet, sweeping her into his arms, the two kissing deeply, the surrounding applause and screaming nearly deafening.
Behind them in the darkness two violet eyes showed tears, those teary eyes looking towards their own soulmate's blue.
Two smiles filled the darkness, their love echoing across the arena.
End of Chapter 51
I think I'll cry.
Very romantic and touching.
Finn's shown his love for Sky to the world.
His soul shows its romance, Skyler accepting the truth of his
Was there any doubt?
Justin has revealed the secret of his heart, facing Josh with his past.
And Lucas has shown both their own betrayal.
Bryce betrayed Josh by using Justin.
And Bryce found a greater opponent in Justin.
Justin stood up against him, saving his friend from the man's deceit.
Justin's soul is now free to find love and happiness, his friend's love unchanged.
And Lance now is the target of his heart.
Read on, my friends.
Love continues and the past comes into focus.