Note:I think I finally answered every single e-mail, didn't I? Which means that you can give me a lot of new ones to occupy me, just because I don't know what else to do with my time. (Yeah, right.)
Dedication: To Ben. Surprise there, eh?
Disclaimer: All mine. Joey's in the kitchen, probably emptying the refrigerator, Chris is taking a walk with Busta, Lance... I don't know what exactly he's doing, is that supposed to be a portrait of Joey? Anyway. JC and Justin are in their room, doing... - Well, I don't think I want to go there, at least not now. And if I could get rid of this annoying straitjacket, then I probably would be able to cash the check I just received for writing this story before the bank closes.
Just To Be With You...
...is giving me the best day of my life...
Dido, Thank You
JC was pacing. Outwardly, he was perfectly calm, but inwardly, he was pacing Lance's room, back and forth, from the window to the door and back. To anyone who would happen to see him, he was sitting in a chair, waiting for Lance to finish settling their wake-up calls.
But it was a facade. A bad facade, Lance thought smiling. He wasn't intending to make JC uncomfortable, but the settling of the calls was necessary and he always did it right after entering his room. It wasn't his fault that the clerk at the front desk was deaf. Maybe he should have faxed the information.
Although it seemed like an eternity to JC, he had to wait for only three more minutes before Lance finally got off the phone and sat down in the chair opposite him. The distance between them was just right: Not too close, but not far enough to make JC think that the blonde was now uncomfortable in his presence. Lance was good a things like that, everything that had to do with other people's feelings was where he truly excelled. But JC still didn't know what exactly to except from his friend.
The younger man leaned back in his chair, relaxing and silently - and just as unsuccessfully - asking JC to do the same. "So... You're in love with Justin."
It wasn't a question, it was a statement. One that was made with such certainty that JC didn't even think of denying it because he knew that it was useless. So all he did was hanging his head, looking at the floor, but not answering.
Lance leaned forward and gave his friend's hand a quick squeeze. "Don't worry, I'm fine with it. You probably would have me screaming at you if you were just interested in his body; God knows that he has more than enough people like that after him. But you love him, and that's fine. He deserves to be loved for himself."
"You're... you're fine with it? Really? I mean, you don't have to say that you're fine with it just to make me feel better. So if you have a problem with this, then..." JC knew that he was babbling and stopped himself abruptly. For the first time since Lance had started speaking, the dark-haired man dared to look up and meet the blond man's eyes.
"Jace, you know that I only say things I really mean. And I mean this. You're one of my best friends who just happens to be in love with another one of my best friends. Both of those friends are male. So what?"
"I just thought that with you being so religious and, I don't know, but they aren't exactly enthusiastic about homosexuality where you come from."
"Do you know how inappropriate some parts of the Bible are because of translation mistakes? You'd be astonished. And me being from Mississippi doesn't mean anything. My parents raised me to be tolerant and to respect others for who they really are. And how can loving someone be wrong? It isn't, Jaycee, and it will never be."
"When did you get so wise, and why didn't you tell us?"
"Oh, I always was." Lance grinned. "I just didn't want the rest of you to feel inferior."
JC returned the grin openly, relief written all over his face. Sure, he had hoped that Lance could accept this, but he hadn't dared to hope that it would go so well, that the Mississippian boy didn't even show the slightest bit of unease around him. They sat in comfortable silence for a while, JC lost in thoughts and Lance knowing better than to disturb him.
Suddenly, the older one raised his head, giving him a curious look. "Lance, how did you find out? I mean, am I really that obvious?"
"No." Lance shook his head. "Don't worry about it, you aren't. I'm pretty sure that Joey and Chris would have trouble noticing, even if they would observe you as closely as I did today. Sure, you give him looks, and you touch him more and somehow... I don't know how to describe it. More loving, I guess. But it's not obvious or anything."
"Why did you observe me?"
"Well, you gave me the first clue by accident. Remember today, in the bus, when Justin dragged you off to watch some horror movies with him and we met in the doorway of the kitchen?"
JC nodded in affirmation and waited for Lance to go on.
"You were writing something before, and I guess you wanted to get rid of it when you heard Justin approaching. Let me tell you one thing, JC: When you don't concentrate properly, then your aiming sucks. I found this about two feet away from the garbage can."
Lance reached for something in his pocket, brought out a crumbled piece of paper and smoothed it, then held it out for JC to read. Not that the latter didn't know what was written on there, but he still reached for it and scanned over the words.
My Life would have been easier
If I had never met you.
When I lie awake at night.
Each time we have to seperate.
And less heartache
Knowing that you'll never be mine.
It just wouldn't be
The dark-haired man glanced at Lance, back at the poem, then at Lance again. "I don't get it. I mean, sure, it's a love poem, but how did you know that it was about Just?"
Lance shrugged. "I didn't think much of it when I first read it, not until I noticed that it was completely different from the stuff you normally write. So I read it over again and realized that you meant what you were writing, and the line "never be mine" got stuck in my head somehow. Believe me, I didn't have the faintest idea that you were in love with Justin, not yet, but it sounded as if you could use someone to talk to, and that's when I decided to watch you."
"And I gave you enough clues to make you realize that the person I was talking about was Just."
Lance nodded. "You did. It's almost like you radiate love whenever you're around him."
JC leaned back in his chair, sighing. "And you tell me that I'm not obvious..."
"You aren't, Jace, believe me. You're only obvious to people who know what to look for."
"Did you..." JC paused, not sure whether to continue or not, but decided that it was worth a try. "Did you also watch Justin?"
"No." The younger one shook his head. "Sorry, Jace, I can't tell you anything about his feelings. - Aw, don't look so disappointed, Big Daddy. I didn't say that it's impossible that Justin returns the love you have for him. I just didn't watch him, and therefore I don't know anything about it. He never talked about his sexuality, I guess I just automatically assumed he was straight." Seeing the hopeless expression on JC's face, Lance quickly continued. "But that doesn't mean anything. Only a few hours ago, I would have automatically assumed that you're straight as well, just because I never really thought about it. What I'm trying to say is: There is a chance, Jayce."
"But I'll never find out unless I tell him, is that what you were going to say?"
JC sighed. "Lance, I appreciate that you're trying to make me feel better, but let's not forget about real life. And in real life, the chances of Justin being in love with me are about 1:1000."
"Okay, so it's not very likely. But it's still possible, and even if he's not in love with you, then you'll still feel better because you don't have to pretend being straight in front of him. And Joey and Chris, for that matter."
"He would feel uncomfortable being around me, and I don't want that."
"Maybe it would take him some time getting used to. But Justin loves you, at least in the brotherly, platonic sense, and I just know that he wouldn't let go of your friendship because of something like that."
"How can you be so sure about this?"
"Because I know Justin, I know the kind of person he is. I may not know him as well as you do, but I think that in contrast to you, I'm able to judge him objectively here. You're scared, and that's why your objectivity goes on strike." Lance knew that he had reached the exact point where he had to stop, not because he was afraid that JC would get angry at him, but if he stopped now, then the thought would slowly start to settle down in JC's brain. Therefore, he changed the topic. "What about Chris and Joey?"
"You think they'd be fine with it?"
"I think they will. Sure, Chris won't be able to hold back some of his jokes, but you know him. Joey... I don't think you should have a problem with him, Joey was always pretty open-minded, he won't give you any trouble. Why don't you start with telling them, at least that you're gay? You could tell them one-on-one, then you can be sure that you have everyone's support when you tell Justin."
"You want me to tell them that I'm gay and in love with Just?"
"No, only the first one. Leave the rest for later." Not sure if he had chosen the right way to tell JC to come out to the remaining three, Lance leaned back and waited for JC to finish thinking it over. He was mildly surprised when he saw the older one hesitantly nod his head after a few minutes of silence.
"Okay, I guess you're right. Maybe I should tell them, but give me time, okay? I never thought about telling anyone before, so I have to get used to it first. And I don't want to just blurt it out. When the situation is right, then maybe I'll tell Joey or Chris. But not Justin. Not yet."
Lance hadn't expected more. In fact, he had expected less. Sure, it wasn't a promise to tell them, but at least JC didn't just laugh off the idea. There was a chance that he would eventually be ready to say something to Joey and Chris. And Justin.
Lance really wasn't sure about Justin. He was sure about what he had told JC, that Justin would remain JC's friend no matter what, but Justin being gay, and/or in love with his best friend? Lance had to think about that. Definitely.
Come home, Josh, I can't sleep without you here. Please? It's been over an hour. I miss you... - God, this is ridiculous. Can I get any more pathetic? Probably not. A little over an hour without him, and I'm going insane! Get a grip, Justin, you don't want him to find out your cute little secret, do you? No, you don't. Which is why you have to get a grip. Now.
I can't believe this, I'm acting as if we never spent nights in different hotel room. Okay, it's been quite some time that we had to room separately, but still, this is not good. Maybe I should call Brit, but then she would know that I didn't exactly tell her the truth when I said that the only time I can't sleep is when we're sharing a room. Do I want her to yell at me? No, I don't think so. Hence I have to find something else to occupy me. Well, there is something I could think of - but as I don't know when Josh will be back, I'd better forget about it. What else?
MTV, that's it. Who knows, maybe there's something good on, it's worth a try. Hey, isn't there even a song about it? "You're watching MTV while I lie dreaming in an empty bed". Okay, doesn't exactly fit the situation. Anyway, let's look what's on...
Um, yeah. Great. Why is it that no matter how you're feeling, there's always the right thing on TV to make you feel even worse? I'm exaggerating? So what! I think I have the right to be a little pissed right now. Just answer me this one question: How probably is it that all I'm trying to do is forgetting about JC, and the next thing I see on MTV is God Must Have Spent? At least the video's almost finished now, I don't know if I can stand the corniness at the moment. Why? Because I almost agree, and I own it to my dignity that I'm not able to see even the tiniest bit of sense in lines like "When I look into your eyes / I know that it's true / God must have spent a little more time on you.". I can't be sunk that deep, can I? Please tell me that I'm not!
Although... - Hey, I wouldn't mind spending a little more time on you. Okay, that's Mr. Horny talking again, trust him to speak up at least once a minute. Isn't there this saying "Small sins are punished immediately"? Seems to be true, because now I'm being punished for thinking dirty: Here I was thinking that the video was over and now I could watch some other artist and hopefully get my mind off Josh, and what are they doing? Broadcasting an interview with Josh. Yep, I can't help but love MTV today. Are they doing it on purpose? Probably not, because if they knew that Justin Randall Timberlake is hopelessly in love with his best friend Joshua Scott Chasez, then they sure as hell wouldn't show our videos and rather spend hours interviewing every halfway famous human being about it instead.
Yup, living the life of a pop star is great.
Another one done. I'm getting those out fairly quickly, don't you think so? It's fun to write, though. Sorry about my bad poem.