Well Here I am again. Life just sped right up on me and sucked away all my time. I know that's no excuse but hey that's what happens when you are in the cast of a musical that is making its US Premier (shameless personal plug there!) The show is up and running now so I have more time and I promise I will get this story back on track.
I would like to know if there are any direction ideas that you, the readers, have for this story. I know it has been slow going and not very exciting and I promise that it will pick up. I would love to know your honest feelings and where you would like to see Cody and the gang go in the upcoming chapters. Don't worry, the realism and romance will still be there but I would like to know what you think.
I was glancing back at past chapters and I noticed that since I introduced Cameron to the story I haven't shown enough of his perspective on things. So this chapter is devoted solely to his perspective and his role in the story. I think your gonna like it!!
My biggest fear I have is that the readers have disappeared. HELLO!!! If you're still out there and still reading, let me know. I always welcome your comments and words of wisdom. Hearing from you makes my day and brings a smile to my face. Feel free to write me at Shywriterboy29@hotmail.com
I don't have the slightest clue as to the sexual orientation of the characters in this story. It is entirely a figment of my imagination
(but I can dream!), and is not intended to reflect on any celebrities used in this story. For those of you that are NOT of legal age,
go do something else. If you do read this, then don't get caught. If you are offended by male/male material, or it is illegal to view
such materials in your area, you should be typing in a new URL at this time. (Why are you even at this website?) If you are looking
for a story with lots of sex, boy, are you in the wrong place! This is a story of love and friendship. Sure there will be sex, but it
will not be a free-for-all every story.
|EARLIER THAT DAY|
Josh hung up the phone and immediately sat down. "I think I'm gonna be sick."
"What did he say Josh?" Justin asked. "How does Brayden look?"
"Lonnie said that it's not pretty. He has a black eye, is walking with a limp and is holding his arm to his chest," Josh said, nearly in tears.
"Don't worry, Josh," Lance said, wrapping his arm around his friend. "We're all here for you and we'll get through this together."
"Thanks, you guys," Josh replied with tears in his eyes. "I don't know what I'd do without you."
The next few minutes passed as if they lasted an eternity. No one said anything; we all just waited nervously for Lonnie and Brayden to arrive. Each one of us dreading what we were about to see.
After about 5 minutes, there was a knock at the door. Everyone stood, frozen in their places. Josh would not take his eyes off the door for anything.
Cameron and I went to the door and opened it. I was utterly shocked at what I saw come in the room. There was Lonnie carrying this broken shell of a man with one arm. Brayden was obviously in a lot of pain, and didn't quite seem to know where he was. We all could tell that the poor man had been through hell.
Josh couldn't move, he just stood where he was and cried.
Lonnie stopped about a foot into the room and let Brayden try to stand on his own. Brayden found his balance and looked around the room quite dazed. I could tell that he was looking for Josh.
It did not take long before Brayden found what he was looking for. His eyes immediately welled up with tears as he tried to make his way to the man he loved.
me, Josh..." was all we heard before he lost his balance, and fainted
"BRAYDEN!" Josh screamed running to his boyfriend's side.
I was about a foot away from Brayden as he started to crumble and I managed to grab him before he hit the floor. I gently laid him on the floor as Josh and Cody came running up next to him.
"Oh My God!" Josh cried through flowing tears as he reached Brayden's side. "TALK TO ME SWEETHEART. CODY, IS HE OK? WHY ISN'T HE TALKING?"
"He just passed out, Josh, probably from exhaustion," I said, placing my hand on his back. "Come on, let's give Cody some room to look at him." Josh complied with the request and stood up, wrapping his arms around me while he sobbed.
We all sat in silence and watched Cody look Brayden over. My heart was sick at the thought that someone could do this to another person. Chris is his family, his blood, and just because Brayden spoke from the heart and confided something so personal to his "so called" best friend he gets this. It was just not right. What hurt even more was the fact that I used to be like that, that I did something like this to Cody.
As Josh and I stood watching Cody with Brayden, Lance and Justin came up to join us. I noticed that Justin stood right next to me. I looked over and saw the panicked look on his face and the tears in his eyes. I reached over to him and placed my hand on his back to comfort him and he immediately wrapped his arms around my waist on my other side and leaned his head on my chest. I could not help but look down and smile. I never thought in a million years that I would be standing in NSYNC's dressing room, let alone have two of its members stuck to either side of me. It was a very surreal feeling.
Josh would not take his eyes off Brayden for anything. As Cody examined his wounds, Brayden began to come to. Josh was at his side in a flash, holding his hand and comforting him. It warmed my heart to see such devotion and wished that one day I would find something like that for myself.
I went to move and see if I could lend a hand when I realized that Justin was still attached. I looked down and he looked up at me with tears in his eyes and a look that said "Please don't let me go." I smiled down at him and said, "Its OK, Justin, you stay right there as long as you need."
"Thank you," he said as he smiled that gorgeous smile and my heart skipped a few beats. It shocked me at first, the feeling that I had the moment he smiled at me.
"What was that?" I thought to myself. "Could I have feelings for him? Could I be falling for Justin Timberlake?" I quickly dismissed that feeling all together. "There is no way," I started thinking again. "He could have anyone and anything he wanted, he would not want a big lug like me."
I was immediately brought back into reality by an excruciating cry. Brayden was fully awake now and crying in pain as Cody carefully examined his wounds. The painful noise Brayden was making was not helping Josh's mood and demeanor at all.
"Be careful, Cody!" Josh said abruptly. "Is he OK? Is anything broken? I am so scared Cody. What if there is something seriously wrong with him? What if I lose him? I would die if something happened to him."
Cody stopped what he was doing and grabbed Josh by the shoulders, spinning him so that they were face to face.
"Joshua, listen to me," Cody said sternly. "I know how this looks and believe me, Brayden is in a lot of pain, but I promise you he is going to be all right. What I need you to do is calm down. Brayden is going to need the support of everyone to get through this, especially you. You are doing him no good freaking out like you are. So, take a deep breath and be strong for him. He is going to need that."
Josh took a deep breath and nodded quietly to Cody.
"Lance," Cody said, looking over at the blonde singer. "Could you please get my cell phone for me?"
"Sure thing," Lance replied going back to the couch where they were sitting before.
"How is he Cody?" I asked reluctantly.
"Well, I don't see anything life threatening. He will have a black eye and he may have some cracked or bruised ribs," Cody replied, looking up towards Justin and I. "My biggest concern is his arm. It is swollen and warm to the touch, it may be broken."
Hearing that last part brought a fresh wave of sobs from Josh. Cody looked up at him and took his hands, reiterating what he said before. "Be strong, Josh. He's going to need you intact to get through this."
Josh nodded and got his sobs under control as Lance returned with the cell phone.
"Who are you calling?" Justin asked.
"I am going to call Sylvia at the hospital. He needs to be checked out by a physician. I can only assess what I see; I want to be sure that there is nothing on the inside that needs attention," Cody replied. "Lonnie, would you mind taking us in?"
"No problem. I'll get the limo ready," He replied.
"I'm going, too!" Josh said standing up.
"No, Josh, you can't," Cody replied. "I will take good care of him and besides, Johnny said that you guys are not allowed to leave the arena.'
"I don't care, he needs me there and I intend to go," Josh replied angrily.
"Cody is right Josh," Lance joined in. "Think about it. Not only can't we leave, but if you were to push this, Johnny would want to know why and then it would get back to Chris that we know and that may create more problems for Brayden. I agree with Cody, let him and Lonnie take him in and get him checked. There is still plenty of time for them to be back by the time the show starts. He will come back to you, I promise."
"I will even go along, on your behalf, and make sure that he comes back," I piped in.
"Alright, fine," Josh said, standing. "But for the record, I'm not happy about this."
"I'll take good care of him, I promise," Cody replied, hugging Josh close. "Now let me call Sylvia and make sure this is as quick and painless as possible."
Cody took his phone and walked to the corner of the room, followed by Lance. We all just stood there, lost in our own little worlds, trying to make sense of this whole thing, when a voice came from out of the blue. "Could someone please help me up from the floor? I'm already in enough pain and I don't need to be stepped on."
Josh, Justin and I turned to see Brayden propped up on one elbow trying to get up.
"Justin," I asked. "Help me get him to the couch."
Justin nodded and we went to either side of Brayden and hoisted him up with his arms around our shoulders. We gently placed him on the couch next to Josh. Josh wrapped his arms around his boyfriend and gently kissed him on the cheek.
"Josh, I'm so scared," Brayden said as tears welled in his eyes again.
"I know, love, but Cody and Cameron are going to take you to the hospital to be checked out and he promised to take good care of you," Josh replied, laying his head on Brayden's shoulder.
"Who are Cody and Cameron?" Brayden said with a puzzled look
"Cody was the guy who was examining you when you first came in. He is a good friend of Lances and an EMT. This here, "Josh said gesturing towards me, "is Cameron, Cody's best friend."
"I wish it was under different circumstances, but it's a pleasure to meet you," I replied extending my hand.
"It's nice to meet you, too," Brayden said, shaking my hand weakly. "Josh, I'm scared. I wish you could go with me. I know Chris is here and I don't want to see him. I don't want him doing this to me again. Can I trust Cody and Cameron to keep me safe?"
"Josh, can I take that one?" I asked. Josh nodded. "Brayden, I know you don't know me very well but I have been in a similar situation and I promise you, that asshole Chris won't step anywhere near you. If he does I'll break him in half. He had no right doing this to you and I know I speak for everyone else in the room when I say that as long as the 5 of us are around NOTHING, and I repeat NOTHING, is going to happen to you."
"Thank you," Brayden replied with tears in his eyes. "That makes me feel a lot better."
"OK, it's all set," Cody replied, hanging up his phone and making his way over to us. "Sylvia said that it's slow there at the moment and the sooner we get him there the better."
This cause panicked looks from both Brayden and Josh.
"Don't worry Brayden, you're not in any danger," Cody continued. "She just wants to make sure we can get you in and out without any problems or delays and now is the prime time to do it."
"OK," Brayden replied, relieved. "Let's go then and get this over with. I promise to hurry back to you," he said turning to Josh. "Please don't worry, I'll be fine."
Josh leaned in and rested his forehead on Brayden's and gave him a tender kiss. They remained like that for a minute or so before Josh turned to me with tears in his eyes. "Bring him back to me, Cameron."
"I swear to you I will," I replied with a smile.
I reached down and helped Josh get Brayden to his feet. As we were walking him towards the door I noticed Justin out of the corner of my eye sitting alone in the corner of the room. He was leaning forward with his elbows on his knees and his head was down.
"Cody," I said taking Brayden's arm from around my shoulders. "Can you and Lance help Josh get Brayden to the limo? I'll catch up to you in a minute."
"Sure. Is everything OK?" he replied with a puzzled look.
I motioned with my head toward where Justin was sitting and both he and Lance understood where I was going.
"Everything is fine, I just need to take care of something. Just go, I'll catch up," I replied as Lance came over and took Brayden's other arm.
Lance looked at me and smiled as the 4 of them made their way out the door. When they were finally gone and before he closed the door, Cody looked at me and mouthed the words Be Careful. I smiled and nodded at Cody and turned to face Justin.
I walked over to where he was sitting and knelt in front of him. He didn't move or look up at me. He just stayed there, staring at the floor.
"Justin, are you ok?" I asked. No response from him.
"Talk to me kiddo. What's up with you?" Still no response from Justin.
I reached down and put my finger under Justin's chin and gently lifted his face up to look at me. My heart broke as I saw tears in his eyes. He finally focused his eyes on me and gave a half hearted smile.
"Hey," he said softly.
"Hey there, you ok? You want to talk?" I replied smiling back.
"That was so scary. How could Chris do that to him?" Justin's tears began to flow. "I felt so helpless. I usually can take control of a situation and get it resolved but with this I couldn't. All I could do was stand there. I couldn't help Josh. He's my best friend, and I couldn't help him..." Justin trailed off, as his sobs became heavier.
I reached up and wrapped my arms around Justin and pulled his head into my shoulder. "Sshhh, its OK," I soothed. "Go ahead and let it out."
After a few minutes Justin calmed down and sat up. Tears stained his face. He looked down and noticed the wet spot on my shoulder where he had laid his head.
"I hope I didn't ruin your shirt. I'll replace it if I did," he said looking worried.
"Don't even worry about it. It's just your emotions leaving their mark. It'll soon dry and everything will be OK," I said with a little wink. "As for those cheeks of yours, let me go get something to help dry those."
I stood up from where I knelt and walked over to the food table on the other side of the room. I grabbed a napkin and made my way back to Justin. I moved one of the nearby chairs over and sat next to him, handing him the napkin. He quietly began to dry his eyes.
"Thanks," he said tossing the napkin into a near by garbage.
"You gonna be OK now?" I ask him.
"Yeah, I think so," Justin replied with a smile.
"Good," I said standing. "Now I better go catch up with Lance and Cody and get Brayden to the hospital."
"I'm sorry, Cameron," Justin said quickly.
"For what?" I asked him.
"For losing it like that," Justin replied. "It just got a little overwhelming. I've never seen anything like that before, and like I said, I got scared. And then I kept thinking `why can't that be me?'"
I looked at Justin confused "Wait, you want someone to beat the shit out of you?"
"No. Sorry, that didn't make sense," Justin said with a giggle. "I saw Brayden and Josh together and how close and in love they are and I want that so bad. I want someone to care about me. I want to be loved so much."
As I watched Justin speak I could see the great longing in his eyes for the love he talked about. He looked like a lost child needing someone to make him feel special. Seeing this made my feelings for him increase. Here is someone with more money than I'll ever see in my lifetime and because of his celebrity image, they tend to get put on this pedestal. It was very grounding and endearing to see this human side. To see that he hurts, loves and gets emotional just like everyone else.
I grabbed the chair that I was sitting on and moved it so that I sat face to face with Justin.
"Now you listen to me," I said, taking both of his hands. "I am a firm believer that things happen when they are supposed to happen and there is a reason for everything. Justin, you are a wonderful guy and I know that there is a guy out there that would give you all that Josh and Brayden have and more. You just have to tell yourself that you're worth it, because you are, and keep that love alive in your heart cause one day someone is going to come along and see that love and want to make you a part of their life."
"You really think so?" Justin asked with a hopeful expression.
"Yes, I do," I replied smiling. "I also think..."
"But it's so hard for me and the rest of the guys," Justin interrupted, starting to ramble. "We are always in the spotlight so it makes relationships hard, and we never get any privacy. How am I ever going to be able to be who I am and..."
As I sat there and listened to this gorgeous man ramble on and on, my heart nearly exploded at how beautiful he was. I was seeing a side of him that not many people get to see; the human side. And it was this side of him that was attracting me to him even more.
I sat there and watched him ramble on and something came over me and I leaned in, placed my hand on the back of his neck and gently kissed his soft lips. He was mid-sentence when our lips met and all at once he stopped talking and slowly melted into the kiss. When the kiss finally broke I looked at Justin and he just sat there with his eyes closed. When he finally opened his eyes, he had a shocked and bewildered look on his face.
"What was that for?" he asked breathlessly.
"You looked like you needed it. I'm sorry if I was out of line," I said trying to cover my tracks. "Besides, you were talking entirely too much."
I tried to giggle and lighten the situation but Justin just sat there with a shocked look, making very little movement.
Way to go, Cameron. I thought to myself. You really screwed that one up. I began to panic and decided to just cut my losses and get out of there as fast as I could.
"Look, Justin," I said, focusing back on him. "I'm sorry if I was out of line with that kiss. You looked like you needed it. I was just trying to help."
I looked at Justin, hoping for any recognition, any movement, ANYTHING! There was nothing there. He was in some sort of trance, which didn't make me feel any better.
"Look," I said, standing to leave. "I better get going and help Cody and Lance with Brayden. Keep your head up and don't forget, you're a great guy and one day someone is going to love you for you. Just focus on the future and what you have, instead of what you don't have. Cause I promise it won't be long `til you get everything your heart desires."
There was still nothing coming from Justin. He just sat there.
"Well, I guess I better go. I'll see you in a while."
I turned and headed for the door when something Justin had said earlier came back to me.
"I remember you saying earlier that there was someone that you had a crush on," I said turning back toward where Justin sat. "I say focus on that. Try to get to know him better and see where that leads. What's the worst that could happen? Who knows, maybe one day he will kiss you like that."
"He just did," Justin replied, looking me straight in the eyes.
All at once I couldn't breathe. What did he just say? Justin Timberlake has a crush on me? Did the door to everything I ever wanted just open? The room started to spin and I began to panic. I had to get out of there.
"Umm, I got to go," I stuttered out, quickly making my way to the door.
"Cameron, wait!" Justin said after me.
I couldn't stop, I had to keep moving. I quickly made my way out the door and down the hall towards the waiting limo.
|**To Be Continued**|