~*~ Every last word of the pages to follow is from an author's vast imagination and is therefore not supported in true reality. Although the characters to be featured are prominently factual, the numerous scenarios, situations, and events they will encounter throughout the course of the tale are not! Its principal objective is that of enjoyment and entertainment to you, the reader.
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~*~ The Catalyst and the Driving Force ~*~
Days slip by with uneventful twists and turns as he is alone in the mansion. His girlfriend Jessica only spent one night with him because she had to get back to work in Los Angeles. He should be working too but there will be plenty of time for that in the future. Timberlake is happy to see them in the news and tabloids from when he went to pick her up at LAX. Their kiss is covered over every news report and is the subject of many magazine articles. The staged kiss did exactly what it was supposed to do and he is excited to see himself back on the world stage like this. And she still has no idea what is going on. Their sex manages to keep her distracted and occupied so that she does not suspect a thing. He should see this. Justin lays in bed as morning light shines in on him with the TV on and forming all these opinions on his relationship with Jessica Biel. The word is getting out and his phone rings.
He sighs at the name and, "Good morning mother."
"Hi sweetheart. How are you?" his mother Lynn asks her son.
"Fine. Just wondering why my son never calls me anymore---"
"Aww mom---I'm sorry. I've been really busy and---"
"---And I see what you've been busy with," she cuts off to show the real reason for her calling.
"What do you mean?"
"Who is this Jessica girl you're kissing all over the news? What's this all about?"
The true reason for the call comes out and he becomes a little uncomfortable at the blatant question. He is dating a woman but he told his parents that he is gay. So it is obvious that his mother would want some answers as to what he is doing. Justin remains quiet trying to think of what to say to convince his mother that this relationship with Jessica Biel should be taken seriously. But when the line goes silent the pressure is on even more for an explanation so he thinks of what to say. His mother must be worried about him because he told her and his father that he is gay but now he is dating a woman on the world's stage. That's it. Timberlake thinks about it inside his head and wonders what his mother would say were he to tell her the truth about why he is doing this. Why he is truly dating the beautiful actress. No one must know the true intent their relationship. It has to be kept a secret from all.
"I bet dad's happy about this," the former N*SYNCer scornfully thinks out loud.
"What is that supposed to mean?"
"He doesn't want a gay son right? And gay men don't date women."
"I don't understanding you Randall," Lynn's worries come to the surface. "Are you gay or not son?"
"Does it matter?"
"Yes. Yes it does. It matters a lot. So are you?"
Justin sighs before beginning, "Yes mom. I'm gay. I won't ever change back. Guess I'm not your little boy anymore---"
"Don't ever say that! You will always be my little boy no matter how old you get or what you do."
"It's for appearances. We're together for the media."
"What does that mean?"
The concept is confusing to her and Timberlake does not feel like explaining it to her but he is sure that she will keep him on the line until he can fully explain himself and his link the Biel. If this was truly the case then getting together with someone whose career was on the fast track as well would make them a power couple. The media would go into overdrive to get pictures and dirt on the couple, which would bring extreme attention onto future projects. This extra attention would help boost sales and is a global marketing tool that is used by many of his peers. Justin tells this to his mother in hopes that she will buy it and stop questioning him. Any type of publicity is good publicity and this is what he explains to her. He tells her that their relationship is for the public alone and it will guarantee that the spotlight will remain on them. Still there are questions that loom much to his annoyance.
"Does she know?" Lynn seems to be uncomfortable with the idea.
"No. She thinks it's real---"
"It's easier this way," the songster shortly replies back.
"For who? So you're using her without her even knowing? What happened to everything you were telling me about people doing things like this all the time?"
"They do. I just don't want to complicate things."
"I didn't raise you this way. To treat women like this---"
"Don't do this mom. It isn't anything like that," Justin scratches his head and yawns.
"So what is it like Justin? Why would you enter into a relationship with this girl only to use her? You're sitting on top of the world so you don't need any more publicity."
"There's always room for more publicity."
"She doesn't know about it. She probably thinks this could get serious. Why would you do that to someone else?"
He does not need this lecture so early in the morning and he knows that his mother's questions are only going to get harder and go deeper until the truth is uncovered or she is satisfied with what is being said to her. He gets that trait from her so he has come to expect it. But she will never get to the bottom of this plan to have the truth uncovered. Justin's obsession with revenge is now making him lie to his mother in hopes that she will get off his back. Kobe Bryant's emotional presence in his life is daunting and dangerous but playing with fire helps him get through the day sometimes. This unhealthy appetite goes unnoticed but he is leaning against it now more than ever to get through the intimate parts of his relationship with the stunning Hollywood actress. The intimacy she so desires can never come from him alone. Thoughts of the basketballer have to aide him in this scheme. There is irony.
"What's going on with you Justin? Why are you doing this?" her voice comes in his ear again.
"Mom don't worry. I know what I'm doing," Timberlake reassures while keeping his emotions in strict line.
"You're not the one I'm worried about---"
"She'll never know."
"And you're okay with deceiving her this way?"
"I have to be---" he softly trails off. "I have to go mom---"
"I don't want you doing this," Lynn tells her son.
"Don't worry about it okay. Love you. Bye."
The R&B megastar closes the call and thinks for a moment about the gravity of what he is doing. But this means that if his mother saw the relationship on TV it is really out there. Out there for him to see. Out there to hurt him. He yawns again before fully getting up for the morning to get his day started. He strolls into the bathroom to brush his teeth and wash his face to go downstairs to the kitchen. On the way he sends his publicist a text message to get him two floor seats to the Lakers exhibition game that is only two days away. Jessica should be able to go then as she is only taping a guest appearance on a television sitcom as well as a few radio interviews. He knows he will not get to see her until then so a text invitation will have to suffice. So that message goes out as well and he goes into the refrigerator to get something to eat. The second phase of this plan is on the brink of happening too soon.
It's the right thing.
It really helps saying or thinking that from time to time; maybe it keeps him motivated or keeps the guilt down but it always does the trick. The crooner sits at the kitchen table and munches on some cereal with his phone by his side. He waits for her response to his invitation to a Los Angeles Laker game. She has to say yes. What girl doesn't like dates--- The sidelined phone rings and it is his mother Lynn again but he completely ignores it. Justin wonders what JC will think when he hears about this new relationship. He suspects the conversation will go along the lines of what it was like with his mother earlier this morning but he will deal with that when the time arises. He should call to see how his goddaughter is doing though. Timberlake has yet to call to see how she is doing since meeting her in Paris. He has to get better when dealing with the precious little one because of her innocence.
A responding text a few hours later accepts his invitation to the basketball game and he smiles at the result. The plan is getting confirmed with each piece of the puzzle falling into place. Outside is sunny and warm in the early afternoon so the singing star decides to relax for a couple of hours out there. The house boasts beautiful outlooks of the Hollywood Hills and the large overflowing pool glistens from the light piercing through the skies. A tank-topped and shorts clad Timberlake walks out onto his spacious backyard and makes way to his favorite lounge chair by the pool. The Sun bathes his freckled skin when he sits down and stretches out fully to absorb it all. Sunglasses shield his eyes and his phone is by his side for work purposes. It is a trade off; if he does not work then the phone has to be by him for his team to contact him. He closes his eyes in an attempt to soak in all the sunlight.
Again his mother calls him to talk about Jessica Biel but he is in no mood to defend himself or his decisions to her again. The Sun is making his feel relaxed and at peace and he does not want to disrupt that with his thoughts of deception and revenge. Right now it is not about that but only to relax and catch some rays. But his mind does wander from time to time on if Bryant knows yet. The baller is not one for watching celebrity entertainment programs so he could still be in the dark about it all. This is what going to the exhibition game is for though. They are bound to get noticed seeing as they are a high profile couple now. Gentle breezes blow and the air becomes hotter with each passing second of the day. Justin stops thinking about it all and closes his eyes to truly begin to relax himself. It works and he forgets that he is under the Sun in his backyard. Calming blue skies shelter him.
Another hour passes by and his almost lifeless body is sprawled across the lounge chair enjoying the weather. The former N*SYNCer jumps awake though and looks around as if he is lost. His darkened vision sees nothing out of the ordinary but he sits up instead of leaning back down. He is feeling clear and ready for the game a few days away but outside is getting too hot for him so he heads back inside. Justin sits down to watch some TV in the grand room but it only holds his interest for a few minutes. He turns it off and decides to get a workout in so he relieve even more stress so he heads back upstairs to get a pair of sneakers on. Waiting these two days will drive him crazy if he does not find ways to fill in the time. Maybe because the more free time he has on his hands, the greater the chance he will have to sit down and really reevaluate himself. That is not an option when he has come so far.
Florescent lighting brightly lights the expansive home gym when he steps in and looks around. He has only used it no more than a handful of times and it is mainly because work got too much for him to handle and he needed to blow off steam. That was how he used to healthily deal with his skyrocketing stress levels until it all changed and he started bottling everything up and leaving it unattended inside. It is time to let some of it out. Timberlake sits on one of the many blue mats that adorn the floor and starts stretching out his limbs to get them warmed up all ready. They feel like a tangled mess at first but eventually he can reach places that were impossible when he first started. When he feels limber and flexible enough he walks over to the weight bench to begin doing reps to build his upper body and arms. His status as a sex symbol has to be maintained at all cost though he will never partake in women.
Iron pumps and clanks as they are lifted up and the brought back down over and over again. The sexy singer spends about an hour at various benches working on his biceps, triceps, back, and legs until he cannot do another rep set. A heavy-breathing Timberlake lies on the mat and put his eyes on the ceiling immediately for a few moments to regain himself and then he starts with reps of sit-ups, pushups, and ab crunches. Endorphins fuel adrenaline and his sweating body as he is pushing it further and harder to get a desired result. Muscles ripple and crunch up against lubricated skin and is then released only to be done again. He is sure to count off carefully in his head so that the momentum never breaks. Stomach muscles feel tight and pressurized from both the crunches and standard sit-ups. This strict pattern continues for another half an hour. He is to the point where he cannot continue.
When he feels like his stomach muscles are about to explode, Timberlake struggles but finishes his last rep before he drops back against the blue mat to catch his breath. It is not long before he is up and ready to complete the last part of his workout; the whole thing lasted longer than it should have. He did not realize how much energy he had to burn but he is feeling great. A set of stretches keeps him flexible and he walks onto the treadmill to do about a half hour of cardio to wrap everything up. The exercise machine starts and he starts off with a brisk walk that soon leads into light jogging. Eyes are forward and determined to finish this as Justin takes off from jogging into heavy running. The treadmill belt zips by under him and rotates around and around so that he can run. Then it slows down so he can trick his heart rate before picking up speed once again. This complete workout has him feeling pumped.
The belt reaches its last revolution and comes to a complete stop with a drenched musical superstar standing on top of it. His tank top adheres to his chest, back and flat stomach as second skin as he steps off the treadmill and walks a few feet to fall back down onto the same blue mat as before. Harsh breaths escape both his nose and mouth and he is beginning to stick to the mat below him. It does not matter as a heaving Timberlake spreads himself out to let his body rest and regain energy. Hands are resting on either sides of his thighs and his eyes are closed. His heart rate will come back to normal in a short while so he just has to stay here. Justin allows his mind to wander anywhere it wants to and over any thoughts that were previously forbidden. Nothing of particular interest comes to him but the big smile on his face from his body's natural high is still there. It will wear off into nothing.
He figures it is about time to get up and go wash himself off before finding something to eat. He rubs his wet stomach over soaked tank top and tries to get up but his brain tricks him into staying down. Unconsciously, the wet shirt peels up a little and his hand now rests on his bare stomach all the while his eyes are closed and enjoying the sensations. Justin's hand delves into his shorts to reach his soft dick and play with it. He rubs it as the wet fabric of his shorts bothers him even more than it should. The mood is set and he retrieves his hand to help remove the wet tank top. It ends up somewhere above his head and his shoes and socks come off his body next. Timberlake's nipples are hard either because of his arousal or from the cool air hitting his now bare chest. Socks and shoes get kicked off the mat and away and the former boybander is now in a pair of damp shorts. There is no stopping it.
His body thrusts up so that everything else can be removed; both the shorts and his boxers slide off with one powerful swipe and end up on top of his socks and shoes to make a pile. A naked Justin Timberlake returns his sweat-layered body onto the mat and props both his feet up as if he is about to repeat a rep of sit-ups. One hand snakes down his chest and abs to grasp around his semi hard dick while the other tortures one nipple at a time. Soft grunts and moans come from him as he begins to pleasure himself in his vast home gym. The slick hand pumps up the shaft and deflates back all the way down to the base before starting the journey all over again. Muscles of his abs, chest and even legs clench when he convulses as if he is about to cum. Yeah baby! Each nipple remains hard under his touch and he begs for more of the sensual and warming touch. His own touch drives him insane into it.
It is an erotic scene in the gym as his naked frame is on the workout mat jacking off. He is so hard and horny and missing Kobe. Missing kissing him. And sucking him. And connecting their bodies together. Sweat forms itself more because this feels like a second workout. His breath is short and his mind is scrambled as he thrusts his hard shaft into the tight ring he creates with his thumb and index fingers. Sweat creates a great natural lubricant and sometimes the noises cannot be helped. Timberlake feels himself getting close on so many occasions only to have his body cruelly fake him out. The definition of his muscles shows through the layers of perspiration as he touches himself in the most intimate way. And it feels so good. It is on the same level or even better than having sex with his girlfriend. He licks away sweat from his top lip that has dripped down from to tip of his nose. It tastes of salt.
Justin is so intoxicated by himself that getting off is his only goal right now in the gym. Bead of sweat drip down his balls and crash against the blue mat but his hands soon starts massaging the forgotten body part. He cups his balls gently at first but it is not enough. Strong tugs and sexual squeezing attempt to quench his appetite and entice his sexual desire to erupt. The new sensations against his manhood lull him into a false sense of ecstatic bliss as his body tricks him once again. Droplets of water on his stomach fall off either side of his toned body and onto the mat. His hair is wet and even his earlobes are dripping sweat onto the blue mat. It is starting to feel like a sauna instead of an expansive gym. The warmth only adds to the experience and his bubbling blood inside creates harsh friction between his hand and rock hard pole. The blissful illusion on heightens the experience of sexual fantasy.
"---Fuck---yeah!" the R&B crooner hums out his own satisfaction.
His soaked body is aching for release. The microscopic hairs on the back of his head and the brownish ones on either of his forearms are standing up at all the attention. His warm and slick shaft and pulsating at his touch and more inaudible groans and sucking noises pass through his lips. Justin's balls feel like putty in his hands as they help push his pleasure level over the top. They are churning and thumping in his hand eager for release as his body is for afterglow. He wants his ex boyfriend next to him so badly right now. He wants them both on the same mat together and their bodies touching in the most important ways. She can't do it the way I can. But it is all wishful thinking on his part and it will never happen again. They will never be together like that again. The head of his dick is slowly becoming overwhelmed with gratification and he knows that he cannot hold on for much longer. No more tricks.
The former boybander strokes his hard rod long and hard making sure to cover every inch of his shaft on his way up and down again so he can bring himself to the edge. The skin of his back is sticking to the mat because of sweat and warmth and manages to create a strange but pleasing sensation. Every inch of his skin is intensified to gain bliss from the simplest touch and this fuels his need to continue further. Timberlake feels his body quiver again and again so his hand speeds up to finish it already. Hard grunts rush out of his mouth and he is enveloped as a passionate orgasm washes over him. Pumping still continues when the stick white liquid shoots up through his erect dick and spits upward into the sky. It comes back down to last on his stomach and as high up as his upper chest. Justin's balls churn wildly in his secure palm and his body is feeling so good. The convulsions feel like overload.
"Uhh---uhh! Yeah!" he trails the words carefully. "Damn---"
The back of his head falls back to hit the mat and his eyes open to look up and see the indoor gym. His sweaty body and pounding heart keeps going long after the orgasm has subsided and he is still struggling to catch his breath. It was such an ecstatic moment that ending it now feels like the wrong decision and the singer wants it back more than anything. It does not even register to him that he still wants Kobe Bryant. He wipes the beads of perspiration off his brow with the back of his hand and finally sits his naked form up. Cum slowly snails down his chest and stomach but then stop in its tracks soon after. Justin puts his hands on his knees then rests his head on them to think about what all this is doing to him. He had to think about the baller when he was having sex with his girlfriend Jessica. And now he has to think about him while jacking off. Something is off but he will not confront it.
This should not be happening but the plan will put everything to a rest. It is the only thing that keeps him motivated and looking forward to it working and making him so happy. But then that would be it. It has to continue somehow. The R&B star gathers up his clothes and walks his naked body out of the gym and upstairs to take a shower and get cleaned up. His stomach is grumbling for food but getting clean takes priority now. Maybe the soothing water can flow through his mind and drown all the unwanted thoughts that reside there. That would take away some of his resentment and the overwhelming need for revenge and power. The room is quiet when Timberlake walks in to grab a towel before ending up in the bathroom. Things are getting dicey and he knows that watching his every step is in his best interest. Failure is not an option. Not now. Not after everything he has done.
A pair of eyes stare back at him in the mirror and he notices the little things more than what he should be focusing on. Hair is soggy and messily strewn in every which direction. Droplets of sweat mending together with his eyebrows and unshaven jaw and chin. He really should shave. Justin runs a hand of fingers through his slick hair to try and bring order back into the chaotic mess. His heart is reverting to its normal state as he gets into the shower to wash off all the sweat and cum that has accumulated on his slender body. Kobe Bryant is on his mind even though he does not want the basketball legend to be there. All this will change soon enough and he just has to wait for it to happen. Then maybe his mind will be his alone again. Timberlake steps into the shower with blasting water striking his sore biceps and abs. Showering does not clear his mind as he has come to depend on it to do. Nothing does.
It was going to happen sooner or later. They were bound to talk about what the world was buzzing about. He just did not want it to be today. Right now. But there were a few hours left before the big Los Angeles Lakers game and he still had to get ready and then go pick her up. Justin was going to squeeze it in right now because putting it off any longer was neither worth it nor necessary. The whole world knew so it was only fair that his best friend knew as well. But telling the truth was going to come at a price; a price too high to pay. Lying to JC was not a good idea though and the singing star was genuinely confused as to what to do. He was going to see her very soon to implement a major part of the plan and there was no room for doubt or change. All the wheels were in motion to make this thing happen. Then the phone call happened and everything changed for the moment.
"Hello?" Justin answered, not paying attention to the caller ID.
"Hey JC. What's going on bro?"
"Just called to see how you're doing," Chasez told him.
"Good. Same old."
"So how's my beautiful goddaughter?"
"Growing up too fast right before my eyes," he laughed. "I don't want to miss anything."
"Someone's sounds like a proud daddy."
Justin could only imagine how happy and content his best friend must be feeling. It was riddled and intertwined within his voice. A little part of him was jealous at the serenity and pure happiness JC had in his life but that emotion would never be known by anyone. All this planning and calculating was wearing him thin and he could not remember the last time he truly laughed. Revenge and regaining power were the only thoughts inside him and being so close to having just a small taste of that was maddening him. The pair talked about Stella and how she was growing more with every passing day. For a short while Timberlake forgot what the true intent behind the call was because he was wrapped up in his goddaughter's rapid development. He wondered what, or who, she looked like now or if Chasez ever planned to come back home. Being so far away was saddening. His best friend felt gone.
"Sorry I haven't called much. I've been busy---" the former N*SYNCer said to his onetime bandmate.
"I see what you've been busy with," Chasez replied in a serious but also worried hint in his voice. "Are you going to tell me the real reason I called?"
"I don't know what you mean."
"Okay---we'll play it like that. Why does the paper have you and that actress Jessica Biel together?"
"Beautiful isn't she?"
"That's not what I asked. What are you doing?"
The phone line immediately became silent as he thought of what to say next. Talking to his mother about this was easier because she knew nothing about his relationship with the Los Angeles Laker but JC knew just about everything. He was going to be able to put the pieces together to figure out the plan Justin wanted no one to know about. But he was tired of lying and regardless of what anyone said to him, he was going to deal with his pain in his own way. It definitely was not healthy but it was it was his own way and it was working for him. The R&B songster wondered if his best friend was upset with him or if he would think less of him because of Jessica Biel. Leading her on into something that would never become serious or worthwhile. To him anyway. He just had to play it by ear and see what happened because nothing could jeopardize the plan now. Not when they were this far into it.
"---Justin---what are you doing?" JC Chasez asked him again.
"We're dating. Didn't you read the paper?" he attempted to laugh to break the ice.
"I'm not kidding Justin. What's going on? Talk to me."
"We're dating for the press."
"I've been single too long and you know what happens when you remain single."
He said to finish the thought, "People start talking."
"And you know how that goes---" Timberlake talked on.
"Do you think this is a good idea?"
"Yes. Everything is fine."
"Justin---you're playing with someone else's feelings here. Does she even know that you're using her this way?"
"No. But she's using me to get ahead too," he defended.
"How can she be using you when you haven't even laid down any ground rules? She probably believes that you two are in an actual relationship."
"She can't know. It has to be this way."
He regretted saying the words as soon as they escaped because he now made it crystal clear that something else was going on with this relationship. Another awkward silence filed into the phone line and he thought of things to say to clean up the mess he just inadvertently caused. Timberlake did not want a lecture from his best friend but he was almost sure that it was on the way. A part of him always knew it was wrong to treat her this way because he was dishonest. JC was right; Biel did think they were in a legitimate relationship with a great chance of having a future. She was a sweet and kind girl but he had no interest in her whatsoever. The key was to her never finding out that he never had any intent of taking her seriously. And he did not care about any of that. Revenge was the only thing worthy to him. Getting back all he lost was going to make it all worth it. No matter whom he stepped on.
His best friend said, "So I was right. She does think your relationship is real. Why Justin? Why are you doing this to her?"
"It's nothing man."
"Why does it have to be this way?"
"Huh? What?" Timberlake asked because he was caught.
"Justin---you just said that it had to be this way. That she had to believe that you two are in a real relationship. Why does it have to be that way?" the former boybander grilled his friend.
"We are in a real relationship---"
"How? You're gay Justin. Do you remember that?"
"It has to be like this. I can't go back now."
Chasez got frustrated and sighed, "Stop saying that J! Tell me what's going on."
"I can't. It's nothing."
This was not going to end unless he said something concrete but he did not want to. If he told JC what he was really doing then he knew that he would let his friend down. But physically admitting it would make it real and hurtful. But he was tired of keeping everything to himself. He has been so lonely since the breakup with Kobe Bryant. Their intimate relationship was wonderful but he missed just having someone there. He missed having someone he did not have to be reserved around and could talk to about anything. Chasez was like that for him but the singer felt weird and awkward talking to him about the more intimate parts of being gay. In the beginning there was Chad but he managed to destroy that relationship as well and he and the blonde actor have not spoken in months. Yet another person who was burned by his fueled flame of resentment and retribution. Something snapped.
"It is something. I can hear it," he said into the phone.
"I---want him to hurt."
"What?" JC asked.
"He hurt me so bad JC. I loved---love him. This has to work," Timberlake talked in riddles and nonsense.
"You're using her to get to him. That's why she doesn't know anything," the pieces started to fit together.
It was a delicate situation and he did not know the words to say to make things any better. But this was wrong. Doing this to the young actress was wrong and he knew Justin knew that. He sounded so hurt and upset though. This was why he was so secretive and to himself. Chasez tried to calm his best friend down by being comforting and letting him talk through his feelings so he could maybe get a glimpse as to when and how this started to happen. When he started feeling this way and why he has remained so angry even after all this time. It was his mistake for naively believing that Justin was okay after the breakup or ever checking up on him to talk things through. Now he was so harmful and dangerous to himself, Jessica Biel, and his ex boyfriend Kobe Bryant. He could tell that Timberlake was almost to the point of tears. It had to have been killing him inside.
"I'm sorry buddy---" the former boybander tried to comfort.
"No---I don't want to hear that. He hurt me so now I have to hurt him."
"You can't think like that J. You have to forget this and move on. He isn't worth it."
"No. This will work."
"But this is wrong and you know it. And you're putting her in the middle of it. To get caught in the crossfire."
"She won't know anything. I have to do this," the R&B star sounded needy.
"No you don't. Stop saying that."
The pair talked for a while longer with his best friend mostly saying how wrong it was and how selfish he was being. The cost was too high to pay for something that would not be worth it to him in the end. Revenge was never worth it but the songster was failing to realize it. This stunt managed to show JC just how hurt and far gone his friend was. It has morphed into an unhealthy and serious obsession but he did not know how to help or what to say. Justin was determined to go through with it and he sat quietly still when the lengthy phone conversation ended with thoughts that swirled around him. Chasez did not understand his hurt; he did not understand the kind of love he had for the basketballer. No one was going to understand and that was why everything had to be kept a secret until the right time. No one was going to take this away from him. It was his right. His right to get back what he lost.
These same thoughts revolve around inside his head of what happened about an hour ago as he is in the great room of his luxurious mansion waiting for his plan to move forward. He can tell that his best friend is disappointed in him but that will all have to be dealt with sometime far off from now. Timberlake clutches his phone inside one hand and his index finger runs along the soft contour of his temple and ends about mid cheek. Everything has to move forward because they are both so close to the Los Angeles Lakers game. In his mind, there is no turning back now even if he wanted to. He is already ready and waiting until the clock strikes at the appropriate time for him to leave and go to retrieve his girlfriend. The conversation will have to go to the very back of his mind and be left there as his main purpose now is to make Kobe buy his relationship with Jessica Biel. There is this one chance.
He leaves precisely on time and speeds off to pick her up from her hotel suite. Strangely, he feels exhilaration as he drives toward the city. Kobe has to have some idea the two of them are dating because it has been splashed all over the news ever since Timberlake's display at the airport. So it is not a total surprise but seeing it live is now his next move in this plan. Something that was stolen from him when he fell for the lying Los Angeles Laker and getting it back is so close. So very close he can taste it. He has to be strong and stay on top of this. A mistake can cost him all over again. The singing star arrives at the hotel and rests the car in its exclusive valet section and waits for his fake girlfriend. A text tells her to hurry up while he waits with his hand on the wheel. Justin is getting anxious as he wants this part of the plan to reach its climax already. Biel arrives in the front and opens the door
"Hey baby," the stunning actress greets and they share a quick kiss.
"Hey. You look great," he feeds. "You ready?"
"More than you know," is the low response from him.
The former N*SYNCer speeds off in the direction of the highway and into the sunset. A beautiful orange globe hangs above them and he is a bit uncomfortable. His hand was just resting between the seats and Biel takes it upon herself to hold it. They truly look like a legitimate couple as they are holding hands while he is driving. Timberlake tries not to let it bother him and he knows if he pulls away she will suspect something. That cannot happen right now. Not when everything was so close. If done right, this could be the final aspect of his plan because he is unsure of what his next move should be. Maybe there is no next move. It could be over with this outing. The pair pulls up into a special garage at the Staples Center reserved for the players and more distinguished guests so greater privacy is ensured. Justin thankfully pulls away from her to get out of the car. This will be fun.
Jessica Biel holds on to her man's hand as the walk through the garage and into a secret side entrance of the stadium. Getting to the floor where their seats are will be easy from this corridor. His nerves are heightened and excited; this is the first time he has seen the baller in a while and it feels strange. There are no questions now. No looking back. They reach the court and immediately notice the multitudes of people filing in to seats high above them. Timberlake's eyes stop at the beginning of the Los Angeles Lakers locker room. He's in there. He is so caught up that he does not realize his girlfriend tugging at his hand to direct them to their seats. The songster just walks along while keeping his eyes fixed on the entrance in front of him. Jessica shakes him to full alertness when they are in front of their seats on the middle of the court. They sit together and wait for the game to begin. So close to the game.
"There are a lot of people here," he hears her say.
"Yeah. It's going to be a great game."
They both reach their seats and sit to wait for the game to begin. The floor soon becomes full of influential people who can afford the hefty price tag to be so close to the action. Many people ranging from other entertainers to businessmen and even politicians. Justin's insides grow impatient as he wants the game to begin already. He wants to see Kobe Bryant only a few feet from him. Come on! His girlfriend excuses herself to go to the bathroom while more and more people crowd the arena hoping to be in their seats on time for the game to begin. He is antsy in his seat. This could be it; all ties from the chocolate basketballer could be severed at this very moment in time. It is a dangerous game the former N*SYNCer is playing but he will win it. No matter what he will do whatever it takes to win his power back. His dignity and love. All the noise in the arena annoys him and it feels as if time itself has stopped.
"How long will it be until the game starts?" the beautiful Jessica Biel asks upon her return.
"It shouldn't be more than a few minutes."
"You're so excited baby. You can't stop moving."
Timberlake lies with, "Excited---yeah. I love the Lakers."
"I'm glad we're doing this. I needed some time to relax."
Impatience finally pays off as a familiar noise sounds inside the massive Staples Center and the crowd becomes hushed. Flashing lights greet the spectators' eyes as the home team Los Angeles Lakers emerge from their locker room and step onto the court. It is still somewhat dark so Justin cannot spot his former boyfriend in the obscure chaos. Consciously, his body in the seat moves closer to his fake girlfriend's to give the illusion that they are definitely a couple. The paparazzi will catch on before halftime and their picture will be snapped multiple times. The rival Denver Nuggets exit from the visitor locker room to many boos and sour faces. This is it! The game should begin soon enough but eye contact between the two of them has not been established yet. It might throw him off his game. Be distracting thoughts in his mind. Wondering why Timberlake is doing this to him. Come on. Where are you?
The possibilities are endless and Justin selfishly wants them all to plague and haunt him. Damn he looks good in his uniform. That thought passes through his mind as the game has begun and he is running the basketball to dunk it. He moves in even closer to his actress girlfriend and they both watch the game unfolding right in front of their eyes. Bryant still has no idea of what is going on so Justin continues to wait for the right moment to bring him down. He is playing a great game of basketball thus far. Again Jessica holds on to his hand and he wants her to get off but the attention of more people will be gained. However, the only person's attention he wants in the entire stadium is still unaware of him. Come on. Come on. His caustic impatience flares up once again but he suppresses it with promises of vengeance and regaining of power. Kobe Bryant cannot hurt him anymore. Not like this.
"That tall guy is really good," Biel na´vely says as she points. "He should shoot more---"
"They're all tall," her boyfriend smiles at her unawareness of the game. "Which one are you pointing at? What number is he?"
"Um. It looks like twenty-four."
"Kobe Bryant," Timberlake says lowly without meaning to do so.
"Is that him? I've heard about him but never met him."
"That's him," is all he can muster to say.
In an instant before their eyes connect the former boybander goes in and kisses his girlfriend with a strong motive and purpose. She is completely caught off guard by this but does not refuse him of his powerful kiss. The act works because Bryant is momentarily stunned and runs into an opposing player who in turn snatches the basketball away from his grip. But he cannot stay this way so he shakes it off and goes on the defensive to regain the ball. It could not be him. That would be cruel and unlike him. The baller bides his time until he can get closer to confirm or deny his eyes' allegation and when the ball is passed to him on a subsequent turn, he goes out of his way to see the truth. Justin's smug smile and their holding of hands lets him in on the reality of this game and his former boyfriend. He cannot help but stare and his coach notices and immediately calls a time out for the whole team. It is cruel.
The Los Angeles Laker huddles with the rest of his teammates but his focus is drawn only a few feet away where Justin is sitting and kissing her. The actress he is now involved with and has been all over the news with. No magazine can stop covering their budding romance and Kobe has seen it once when Vanessa was flipping through the channels but he thought it was only rumored. Their being here together tells him that it is not. But bringing her to a basketball game. He is genuinely confused and hurt and a little upset but his eyes cannot leave Timberlake. The coach is yelling him and he falsely nods pretending to pay attention but a little part of his heart is broken. It was never supposed to be this way. Kobe wonders what his motives are and why he brought her here to this game. Something is off and wrong and they desperately need to talk. This is out of control. But it cannot get to him.
Back on the court Kobe still has trouble concentrating on the game and dodging in between opponents to make baskets. He finds himself passing the ball to his teammates more just to buy time to shake the unfocused thoughts from his head. He misses him so much. They share glances from time to time as the game continues and it becomes obvious that his plan is working. Justin's insides light up knowing that he still has an effect on his former lover. He is still functioning on the court but he is not sharp and is making common mistakes on many occasions. Maybe he should be on the bench but the negative publicity from that will haunt the team for months to come. The baller has to refocus and bring his head back into this game. Justin Timberlake cannot get to him like this. If this is all a game then it really is over between them. He just could not accept it before but is forced to now. No more.
"Kobe seems distracted. Is he hurt?" Jessica asks her boyfriend.
"I'm not sure," Timberlake revels.
"I hope he isn't hurt."
He softly adds to himself, "I hope he is."