Category Archives: Rape

When The Glitter Turns Gold – Chapter 20


Chapter 20 — Quit Playing Games

Aug 17, 2004 – Los Angeles, CA (North Beverly Park Suburb)

“Josh, are you sure you can find the house?”  Nikki asked, looking at Josh as he continued driving through the neighborhood, while looking around as if he was looking for something.

“I’m sure baby,” Josh replied as he stopped the car, smiling at Nikki.  “We’re here, are you ready?”

“Are you sure this is the place Josh?  I don’t think this would be JT’s house,” Nikki stated with a frown as she pulled out here cell phone.  “Maybe I should give him a call and get directions from him or Justin.”

“There’s no need for that, this is the place,” Josh stated as he opened the car door as Nikki frowned again, allowing him to get out and walk around the car to open her door.  “All we need to do is just walk up to the door and…”

“Josh look around, do you really think this is the kind of place that JT would live?”  Nikki asked as she looked around.

“Well, I don’t see a gated fence, a guard tower or any security guards or dogs, running around the property,” Josh stated as Nikki rolled her eyes and then glared at him.

“Don’t start, we don’t need any extra drama,” Nikki stated, sighing as Josh held the door open, waiting for her to get out of the car.  “I don’t think this is the place Josh.”

“Fine, go ahead and call him and see if he comes out to greet us,” Josh relented as he leaned against the door as he folded his arms across his chest.

“About time you showed some common sense,” Nikki said as she opened the phone and pressed a quick dial button as she held the phone to her ear.  “Hey JT, I think we’re here, could you come out to greet us?  Yes, I think we’re here, I’m not sure, being that I wasn’t the one that drove us here.”

“Is he saying something…” Josh said as Nikki waved her hand at him to quiet him down.

“Okay, I figured that,” Nikki said as she popped Josh on his leg.  “We’ll see you guys in a bit.  No, I don’t think Justin needs to come down to get us.  I’m sure we’ll find it.”

“This isn’t it?”  Josh asked as Nikki rolled her eyes again and then motioned with her head for Josh to get back into the car.

“I’m hungry too, so we’ll see you guys quickly,” Nikki said as Josh got into the car, started it and looked at her as she pointed in the opposite direction.

Grand Junction, TN – The Studio Apartment of Laci Greylek – The Front Yard

“Me-Ma, I’m sorry to have to do this, but she’s leaving me no choice,” the sheriff’s deputy spoke as he pulled a pair of handcuffs from a holster on his belt.  “I’m sorry, but I’m going to have to use force to take her in.  Please take PJ from her.”

“Please John Darby, please don’t do that.  Just let her do things in her own way,” Esther Jenson, Laci’s grandmother said as she moved around Laci, standing at the door as she raised her hand.  “Please John Darby, don’t separate her and the baby right now.”

“Alright, for you Me-Ma, for you,” the sheriff’s deputy spoke as he put the handcuffs back into their holster as he hugged her and then turned around.  “I’ll be back later on this evening and she best be in a cooperating mood.”

“Yes sir,” she replied as she turned slowly and looked over at Laci and the little baby.

“Alright boys, let’s head back to the station,” the sheriff’s deputy said as the other officers got into their cars and then left.

“Girl, what did you do?”  Esther asked as she looked at Laci.

“I didn’t do nothing,” Laci answered as the woman shook her head.  “Honest, I didn’t do anything wrong.”

“You had to do something wrong for John Darby and his men folk to be here,” the woman said with a sigh.  “John Darby never goes anywhere with his posse for people that haven’t done nothing.”

“Okay Me-Ma, I beat up someone, but they had it coming,” Laci stated as she sighed.

“Why did you beat up someone?”  Esther asked, watching Laci as the young woman got up and then walked over to a chest of drawers.  “What are you doing?”

“We’re leaving,” Laci replied as she lay the baby on the bed and then started taking clothes out of drawers and then throwing them into bags.  “I’m not letting those fuckers lock me up!  If I get locked up, I’ll never see the light of day again.”

“Who did you beat up?”  Esther asked, watching Laci move around in the room frantically.

“I beat up the mayor’s daughter,” Laci replied as she shook her head and then threw some other items into another bag.  “We can’t stay here, we’re leaving.”

“You can’t just up and leave,” Esther said as Laci walked over and hugged her.

“I have no choice Me-Ma,” Laci replied as a few tears fell from her eyes.  “If I give in to them, I’ll probably rot in prison.”

“You won’t rot in prison,” Esther stated as Laci shook her head.

“You know as well as I do that those spoiled brats do what they fucking want around here,” Laci stated as she shook her head.  “That ho deserved that beating!  She took my last twenty dollars and then said I was trying to cheat her!  She knew what she was damn doing!”

“What happened that lead to you beating her up?”  Esther asked.

“When I was paying for the groceries, she said I didn’t give her the right amount of money and that I was trying to cheat her,” Laci stated as Esther shook her head.  “That was all the money I had left and I ended up having to give that to her and then she had the damn nerve to call the police on me!  Damn right she needed her ass beat Me-Ma.”

“Why didn’t you just explain that to John Darby?”  Esther asked as Laci shook her head.  “He would listen if you just tell him.”

“Those fools work for the damn mayor Me-Ma, they’re not going to listen to me.  You see they came here to lock me up!”  Laci screamed as she continued throwing items around in bags.

“Where you and PJ going to go?”  Esther asked as she looked at Laci.

“We’re going to find his father,” Laci replied as she continued packing things.

Chicago, IL – The Clemons Estates – The Backyard

“Well hello Juanita,” Eddie Clemons spoke as his wife stepped into the backyard to see a party in progress.  “It’s so nice of you to join us here today.”

“Eddie, what’s going on around here?”  Juanita asked, looking around the yard.  “You’re having a damn party, why?”

“Why else does one have a party, but to celebrate of course,” Eddie replied with a smile as he turned his back to her and walked over to the bar and then poured himself a drink.  “Why you here woman?”

“What in the hell are you celebrating Eddie?  Where in the hell did you get the money to throw a party like this?”  She asked, looking around again.  “Who are these people?”

“These are some of my new friends,” Eddie replied as he cut his eyes as the woman.  “Again, why are you here woman?”

“I came here to see how you were doing,” the woman replied as he shook his head.

“Why Juanita?  Why are you here now?  Why do you even care about how I am doing?”  Eddie asked, knocking the drink back and then pouring himself another one.  “How I got the money to throw this party is no longer your damn business.”

“What do you mean it’s no longer my damn business?”  She asked, glaring at Eddie.  “Where did you get the money to throw this damn party Eddie?”

“Hell, you didn’t help me get it, so that’s none of your damn business,” Eddie said as he pointed his finger at the woman.

“What about Skeeter and your debts?”  She asked, folding her arms across her chest.

“Skeeter got his damn money,” Eddie responded as he knocked back the drink he had.

“Why you drinking like that?  Don’t you have wo…” the woman said as Eddie held up his hand, stopping her.

“What I do is no longer your business woman,” Eddie stated with a sneer.  “You left here, remember that?”

“Eddie,” she said as Eddie shook his head.

“Don’t Eddie me woman,” Eddie stated as he poured himself another drink.  “When I damn needed you, you were no fucking where to be found.  Now that I don’t need you, here you fucking are.”

“Eddie,” she said again as Eddie shook his head again.

“No Juanita, wherever the hell you’ve been, take your skanky ass back there,” Eddie said as he took a sip of the drink and then placed the glass down on the bar-top.

“What!  You can’t talk to me that damn way!”  She screamed as others around, turned and looked in her direction.

“I’ll talk to you any damn way I please!”  Eddie snapped, pointing his finger at her.  “Again, wherever the hell you came from, take your skanky ass back there.  You ain’t welcomed here no more.”

“I live here, I’m not leaving,” she said as Eddie shook his head.

“Look, I don’t need or want you here bitch, leave!”  Eddie snapped as more people watched them.  “You can leave here walking on your own two feet or you can go out in a body bag.  Which way do you want to go?”

“What you trying to say Eddie?”  She asked as Eddie shook his head and then lifted his shirt a bit, revealing a gun.

“I’m sure you know what I’m saying Juanita,” Eddie responded with an evil look on his face.  “Get away from here Juanita and don’t you come back here.”

“I have things here, I am not leaving here,” the woman said as Eddie shook his head.

“You had things here,” Eddie replied, his expression not changing.  “Everything that you had here that was personal to you was put out on the street weeks ago.”

“What!”  She snapped as Eddie tapped the gun on his waistband.  “You threw my stuff out?”

“Mr. Clemons, is there a problem here?”  A tall black man asked, looking at Eddie and then looking at Juanita.

“No, there’s no problem here, she’ll be leaving now,” Eddie stated as he smiled and then turned back to the bar, pouring himself another drink.  “Juanita just realized that her usefulness to me has ended.”

“Eddie…” the woman said as he shook his head.

“Your time here has ended,” Eddie stated as he shook his head.  “There’s nothing here for you.  Get the hell on… Get gone!”

“This isn’t over,” the woman said as Eddie smiled and then nodded his head at the black man that was nearby.

“Yes, it is ma’am,” the black man said as he pointed towards the gate to the yard as he took her by the arm.  “You need to leave here and don’t come back as Mr. Clemons suggested.”

“Who in the hell are you?”  Juanita asked, snatching away from the man.  “You don’t know me to put your hands on me.”

“Ma’am, if I have to, my hands on you would be the least of your worries.  Please leave here… Don’t make Mr. Clemons angry.”

“I don’t give a damn about making Mr. Clemons angry!”  Juanita snapped as she pointed her finger in the man’s face.  “Eddie, I don’t know what the hell is going on, but you’ve lost your fucking mind!”

“I’ve heard enough,” Eddie said as he pulled the gun from his waistband and then aimed it at Juanita.

“What in the hell are you doing?”  Juanita asked.

“Putting an end to the headache that’s forming right now,” Eddie replied as he smiled.  “I told you nicely to get gone, but it seems you didn’t want to listen to the nice version of that.  Here’s the remix…”

“Fine, I’m gone,” Juanita said as she moved away from Eddie, being escorted away by the black man as the tears streamed down her face.

A Few Hours Later – Chattanooga, TN – The Bus Station

Laci’s POV

Damn, how long does it take someone to process a damn bus ticket?  I’ve been standing at this damn counter for almost twenty minutes and it seems this stupid fuck-up isn’t finished yet.  I already gave him my damn money, so what’s taking him so damn long?  He needs to hurry the hell up, it’s almost seven and I would like to get my ass on the road, before someone notices me or something.

The way that fool is dragging his feet with setting up my ticket, it’s like he’s being slow on purpose.  Hell, if I didn’t know any better, I’d think the fucker was trying to hold me up on purpose, so I’ll miss the bus and have to wait until later on tonight to leave out.

Damn, this crap isn’t funny, he needs to hurry the hell up.  I’m not looking to stay around in this place any longer than I have to.  The sooner I get out of Tennessee, the better I’ll feel.  Since leaving Me-Ma, I’ve had this strange feeling that I’ll have to put up with some extra drama before I get to where I’m headed.  This fuck-tard needs to hurry up so I can get away from here and not to have to deal with Darby and his damn crew.  Right now, drama needs to keep its distance from me, I’m not in the mood for any of it.

“Sir, how much longer is it going to be?”  I asked as the man turned away from the computer and then looked over at me.

“I’m sorry Miss, but the terminal is being a bit sluggish today,” he replied as he smiled and then went back to his paper as he sipped his drink from the cup.

“Is there something you can do to hurry things along?  I don’t want to miss the buss when it gets here,” I said as PJ started crying.  “Come on PJ, you have to be quiet for mommy right now.”

“Ma’am, the computers act real funny late in the day, there’s no rushing things,” he said as I shook my head and then turned around. Looking at the clock on the wall, noticing that it was already after seven.

Damn, he needs to hurry up.  The bus heading to California will be here within a few minutes.  This shit is taking too damn long.  I’m getting a funny feeling here.  Is he trying to slow me down so the sheriff and the gang back in Grand Junction can catch up to me or what?  Is that what’s going on here?  Then again, how would he know the sheriff is looking for me back home?  I don’t think anyone around here knows that I’m wanted for questioning.  Hell, I think I’m wanted for more than questioning, being that I beat up the mayor’s daughter and almost left her for dead for taking my damn money.

“Alright miss, here you are,” the man said as he handed me the ticket and then smiled.  “You and your boy have a safe trip.”

“Thanks,” I said, reaching down and picking up my bags as I walked towards the door where the bus would arrive.

Pretty soon, all of my prayers will be answered.  I’m going to forget about ever being in this sorry ass state.  I’m saying buh-bye to being the poor little girl and saying hello to everything I ever wanted.  Hopefully, by this time tomorrow, I’ll have a new outlook on life, PJ and I will never have to go without again.

The bus to California should be here soon and we’ll be on our way from this fucking rat trap.  I can’t wait to get out of here and over to there.  I just know that this is the best thing for the two of us.  By the time I’m done in California, things will never be the same for us or for Justin Tanner.  When I’m through with him, he’ll wish he never married that man.  Hell, by the time I’m done, I think a lot of things will change and I’ll end up being more famous than Justin’s ever been.  Only time will tell, but I’m sure that Baby Tanner here will shed some light on a whole lot of things for me.  After all this time, it’s time to put my theory to the test.

Los Angeles, CA (North Beverly Park Suburb) – The Home of JT and Justin Poole-Tanner – The Entertainment Room

Howard’s POV

Wow, when Chad said this place was awesome, he wasn’t lying.  This place looks so great, I wonder how they got it decorated so quickly.  They’ve only been out here for a week and they act like they’ve been here for years.  I must admit I didn’t think JT would live in a place like this, but here he is.  I’m used to JT living in a military complex, not a regular house.  This is so different than what I’m used to, dealing with his insecurities.  I wonder what attracted him to this house, being this house is nothing like the house in Jacksonville or the place he used to live in Albany.

“So, you’re here Howard, what’s on your mind?”  JT asked as he and Justin walked into the room.

“Did you enjoy your flight Howard?”  Justin asked as he took a seat on the sofa and then kicked off his slippers.

“Do you want something to drink Howard?”  JT asked as he walked over to a picture, pressed it as it opened up, revealing a refrigerator.  Damn, that’s so cool.  A refrigerator hidden by a picture on a wall.  JT got himself a soda and then looked at me again.  “Howard?”

“No thanks, I’m good,” I answered as he walked around the sofa and then sat on the opposite end as he put his feet up on the sofa cushion as Justin moved a bit and then started massaging his feet.

“Howard, have a seat.  There’s no need for you to stand up, unless you just want to,” he said as I smiled and then sat down across from the two of them.

“Well to get to why I’m here, there’s been a development with Heather,” I said as he put the soda on the floor and then moved around on the sofa, sitting up.  Okay, is this going to go as planned or what?

“What kind of development Howard?  What’s happening?”  JT asked, his expression changing to a scared one as he looked at Justin and then back at me.  “Is Caleb leaving?”

“No, Caleb isn’t leaving,” I replied as his expression remained the same.  “Caleb is staying forever, from what I have here.”

“What do you have there?”  He asked, looking at me strangely.

“This is a writ from a judge,” I said, his expression still the same.  “This says that Heather’s parental rights have been terminated and you are Caleb’s sole biological parent.”

“How is that possible?”  Justin asked, as he moved around on the sofa and then sat up.  “What’s going on?  Did she do something?”

“Think about the stuff we talked about before you two left Jacksonville and add in the fact that the judge that’s presiding over her case has determined that she’s not capable of ever defending herself in her criminal case,” I stated as JT shook his head.

“Meaning, she’s acting crazy and she’s gotten away with what she did.  I knew she wouldn’t be held responsible for what she did to me,” JT stated as I shook my head.

“No, that’s not the case buddy,” I said as he looked at me strangely.  “The judge ruled that she remain institutionalized, until she is capable of contemplating what she’s done to you and Caleb.  That judge also severed her parental rights to him, meaning that she can’t interfere with your lives in regard to him.  You are free to raise Caleb without her being around.”

“Question,” Justin said as JT looked at him.  “What happens when she is able to contemplate what she’s done?  She gets out of the nut-house and comes looking for us to cause problems and tries to take Caleb away from us, is that it?”

“The judge severed all rights she had to Caleb.  She’s nothing to him and he’s nothing to her,” I said, trying to make that clear as I possibly could.  “Her rights to him have been completely terminated.”

“So, you’re saying I don’t ever have to worry about Heather again, right?”  JT said as I nodded my head as Justin shook his head.

“Howard, you didn’t answer all of my question,” Justin said as he looked at me.  “When she’s capable of contemplating what she’s done, she’ll be out of the nut-house.  She’ll surely come after…”

“No, she won’t,” I said, trying to figure out how to put this into words that both of them would understand.  “With the way the judge worded things in this writ, there’s nothing Heather can do in regard to Caleb being here with you two.”

“Are you sure?”  JT asked, looking down at his hands.  “I don’t want to have to put up with any drama that she could…”

“Buddy, I don’t think you’ll ever have to put up with Heather again,” I said, looking over at him.  “If you deal with her, it’s because you want to.”

“I don’t want to deal with her… Justin, do you want to deal with her?”  JT asked, looking over at Justin as he shook his head.

“As I was saying, you won’t have to deal with Heather,” I stated as I pulled out the other folder.  “With the crimes charged against Heather, when she’s finally able to contemplate what she’s done to you and to Caleb, she’s going to jail and for a very long time.”

“She’s going to jail,” JT said as I nodded my head.

“The crime charges that are pending against her are all felonies,” I said as JT looked down and then shook his head.  “That means she’ll spend time in jail for each offense she’s charged with.”

“When she gets out of the mental place, don’t they have to have a court trial or something to convict her of the charges?”  JT asked.

“They don’t have to, she’s already been found guilty in a sense,” I replied as he looked at me strangely.  “She can’t plead innocent to the charges, there is already enough evidence to back up all the charges against her.  Everything has already been proven that she did the things she’s charged with.  The affidavits from the hospital staff at Penn Med, statements from your friend Ken and his parents about what they knew of Caleb’s conception, from what she told them, Caleb’s existence is evidence and plus she keeps telling people that you two had consensual sex and…”

“So, in simple terms, she’s going to jail, regardless of what she or anyone else does and we don’t have to ever worry about her, right Howard?”  Justin said as I nodded my head.

“You guys don’t have to see her, unless Caleb wants to have a relationship with her, but I surely doubt that, since I’ve gotten some very negative reports from children services,” I said as JT’s eyes widened.

“What kind of reports?  Are those the reports from the shit with Glitter?”  He asked as I shook my head.

“No, these are the various reports from the different state and local area social services divisions that attempted to deal with Heather’s action and abuse against Caleb.  There were numerous complaints filed against her, but she never stayed around in a place long enough for the charges to be substantiated,” I explained as JT sighed and then shook his head.

“What kind of abuse Howard?”  JT asked as he looked up at me.

“It seems she had a pattern,” I said as he just looked at me.  “Everywhere she was, different people made the same complaints about her actions with Caleb.”

“What was the complaint Howard?”  JT asked, looking like he was about to breakdown.

“It was accused that she physically and emotionally neglected him and that she had left him in the care of other people, that wasn’t family.  So, there’s a big red flag there.  There were even reports from her Mom about her care of Caleb,” I stated as JT shook his head.

“That somewhat explains that Shannon woman,” Justin stated as he looked over at JT, got up from his spot and moved closer to him, wrapping his arms around him.  “She acted more like she was Caleb’s caretaker and…”

“He called her Aunt Shan,” JT stated as I looked at him, wondering what he was talking about.  “How long was she around in his life, for him to develop that kind of relationship, to call her his aunt, when she’s not related to Heather in any way?”

“Baby, you know kids develop a liking for people in a short amount of time,” Justin said, rubbing his back.

“Maybe so, but that doesn’t… How much did Heather leave him with that Shannon woman and other people?  The boy doesn’t like to be alone much and anytime that I’m out of his sight for too long, he freaks out.”

“Yeah, that’s been established already baby,” Justin said as he sighed.  “Remember, I had to put up with the crying fit while you were in the pokey.”

“Justin,” JT said, rolling his eyes as I shook my head this time.  “So, he’s been neglected and left alone and she’s facing charges for that?”

“Yes,” I answered as he looked at Justin.  “So, as I said in the beginning, she won’t be around to bother you, either of you.  Once she gets out of the institution, she’ll head off to prison.  So, you guys won’t have any interaction with her, unless you want to.  There’s that silver lining I was telling you about buddy.”

“I guess it is a silver lining,” he replied, half smiling as he sighed.

“Then why does it seem you’re not happy about all that I’ve told you?”  I asked, watching him and Justin.

“I am happy about what you’ve told me—us Howard, but there is so much about Caleb’s life that I—we don’t know about.  When we try to find out what’s happened to him, he clams up and changes the subject or runs off,” JT stated as he looked down and then sighed again as he shook his head.  “We know something happened to him, you just confirmed it in a way, but we don’t know what.  We figured when he was ready, he’ll tell us, but after hearing all of what you’ve said, I’m more concerned about his past.”

“We try talking to him, to get him to open up about things, but that’s not really working.  We figured out a few weeks ago that Heather had to have done something to him, because he keeps freaking out, thinking JT or I is going to leave him and we’re not coming back,” Justin stated as he frowned.  “We both try to get him to open up about things, but it seems we’re not getting through.”

“You two may need to get him into some kind of therapy,” I said as JT looked at me and then looked down as he shook his head.

“I—I don’t want him to get a label attached to him Howard,” he said as I and Justin looked at him strangely.  “Once you get that label, people treat you differently.”

“Getting him some help has nothing to do with labels baby,” Justin said, rubbing JT’s back.  “What we’re doing isn’t working.  We might need to get someone better than us to talk with him and maybe he’ll open up to them about what Heather did and what he’s been through.”

“Maybe, maybe not,” JT said as he sighed.

“I don’t think it’ll hurt buddy,” I said, hoping I wasn’t overstepping my authority as he just sighed and then looked at Justin as I pulled the adoption papers out of my briefcase for Justin to sign.  “Also, these need to be signed.”

“What are those… Oh yeah, the adoption papers,” Justin said with a smile as I handed the papers to him.

“Justin, are you sure you want to adopt him?”  JT asked, looking Justin in the face.

“Baby, that’s the dumbest question you’ve ever asked me,” Justin stated as he took the pen from me and started flipping pages, signing the papers.  “You’re my husband and pretty soon, he’ll be my son.  We’ll be one big happy family.”

“Yes, you will be,” I said, wondering would Chad and I have this kind of life, well not the drama part, but the love part.

“Yes, we’ll be one big happy family,” JT said as he looked down again.  “A bit screwy, but a loving family.”

“Ha ha ha, real funny baby,” Justin said as he flipped to the last page and then sighed.  “Here you are Howard, I think I got all of them.”

“Let me have a look see,” I said, accepting the papers from him as I looked through the ones I had little stickies on, making sure there was a signature and initials.  It looks like he got them all.  “I’ll get this submitted to the courts in Jacksonville and then have them filed here in California also.  Are you sure you want this?”

“Yes, I’m sure I want this,” Justin replied with a smile.  “I want this, and the little man can’t wait for me to become his dad too.”

“You two talked about it again?”  JT said as Justin nodded his head.  “Great, well I guess that’s settled then.”

“Yep, it’s settled,” Justin said with a smile.

“I guess you could say that the glitter finally turned gold,” JT stated with a smile as he and Justin kissed.

To Be Continued…
in Book 4 – The Ties That Bind.

When The Glitter Turns Gold – Chapter 19


Chapter 19 — Mirror, Mirror

Aug 17, 2004 – Los Angeles, CA (North Beverly Park Suburb) – The Home of JT and Justin Poole-Tanner – The Family Room

“Wow, this room is big,” Caleb said, looking around as he, JT and Justin walked into the room.  “Daddy, can I watch some TV?”

“Sure, but only for a little bit,” JT replied as Caleb picked up the remote, turned on the TV and then sat down on the sofa in the room.  “Remember, we have to go check out the new school in a bit.”

“Yes sir,” Caleb spoke as he folded his arms across his chest as Justin and JT walked over to the windows in the room.

“Baby, are you sure you’re going to be happy, staying here in LA, twenty-four seven?”  Justin asked as he looked at JT closely.  “You’ve lived in Jacksonville for a long time and…”

“And as I told you last week, this is a new start for all of us Justin,” JT stated as he leaned in and kissed Justin’s mouth as Caleb giggled behind the two of them.  “What are you giggling about little man?”

“Nothing Daddy,” Caleb replied with a smile as JT walked over and picked him up and then kissed his forehead.

“Did you finish unpacking your things in your room?”  JT asked.

“Yes Daddy, Justin helped me,” Caleb replied as he giggled as Justin tickled him.  “Quit it Justin, that tickles.”

“It’s supposed to,” Justin replied as he tickled Caleb more as a phone rang in the room.

“That’s probably Nikki, she said she would call once she and Josh arrived in town,” JT stated as he fished through his pockets, retrieving the ringing cell phone and then opening it.  “Yep, it’s her. Hello Missy, you make it into town okay?”

Justin’s POV

He’s totally right.  This is a new start for a lot of people.  In the past few weeks, a lot of things happened and with that, he and others made decisions that affected our lives and the lives of others for a very long time.  I just hope with all the changes that have taken place, nothing bad happens.  I’m just happy that I’m still a part of his and Caleb’s lives.

Since the Fourth of July party, our lives have taken a different path than what I expected or planned.  One of the paths taken in our lives have to do with his career.  With the way things were going with his career, I thought he was going to take a break from recording.  Hell, I thought that would be the general thing to do since one of the execs of the record company told him he couldn’t record until they wanted him to.  He didn’t take that as the final say so of his career and he used some of his dad’s connections and bought controlling interest in the record company.  Now that he has control, he made changes to his contract.  With his recent actions, Glitter and Starletta are both unhappy.  Oh well.

Another path we’re traveling is this house.  We’re here in Los Angeles of all places to be in the world, the ultimate place to be if you’re a singer, actor or whatever.  With his resume of being in the spotlight, he has access to all aspects of stardom from here.

After the things that took place with Chris crashing the party, JT decided that he had seen and heard too much drama and that we needed some changes in our lives.  Since this house was already bought and he had been here before, we flew out here a few days later to see if I would like the house as much as he does, and I do.  This place looks great outside and it’s not as big as his military complex out in Jacksonville, but it’s big enough for our growing family.  After touring the house and the neighborhood, it was official that we would live here in LA, while Todd and Wes stayed at the other house.

Speaking of Todd and Wes, they are a really strange couple.  Shoot, with the way things went down with them, especially after Chad had proposed to Howard, Todd seemed to be in a strange funk that no one could explain, not even JT, his closest friend.  That didn’t seem to matter much to JT, being that we’re here and whatever drama they have going on there, won’t affect us here.  The drama I feel would affect us has to do with his brother Josh.  I don’t think Josh is really comfortable being around us, but yet, he agreed to leave Jacksonville and move out here with us here in Los Angeles.  Whatever’s going on with him, I hope it doesn’t cause a problem for me and JT when he finally arrives.

“I think that’s right down the street from us,” I heard JT say as I turned around to see that he was still on the phone, chatting with Nikki.

When he told her that we were moving out to Los Angeles, she jumped for joy.  She thought it was a great idea for all of us getting away from Jacksonville and starting new, some place fresh.  Being that she’s been keeping house in Atlanta with her mother, I can understand why she was so gung-ho about getting away from the east coast.  Things were made even more clear about her decisions when it came out that she and Josh were already married, and she hadn’t told her mother about it.  To say the least, JT was a bit upset that he didn’t get to attend her wedding, but the kicker came when she told us that she had gotten married in a private ceremony, somewhere in Georgia, a few days before they left to go to our wedding.  Talk about jumping the broom first.  Anyway, to keep things with ‘Mutual Attraction’ going great and to keep them together, Nikki and Josh are on their way here, to move into their new home.

As for ‘Mutual Attraction’ as a whole, I don’t know what’s going to happen.  With JT’s actions with the record company, things for them has changed quite a bit.  For Glitter, her solo career has been put on hold until further notice.  When she found out, she went through the roof at the meeting that JT had with the execs at the end of July.  That girl was so pissed off, she threatened to sue everybody around until she got what she wanted.  JT laughed it off and left things as they were.  He stated that once he and Nikki were settled, things with the group would resume.  I don’t know if that’s really plausible, since Mo’ette is a no-show.  She’s been acting really strange since David married the other woman.  She’s been acting—acting like she’s ready to end it all since she’s been hanging around with us.

“Justin, do you have any plans for the rest of the day?”  I heard JT ask as I looked up to see him walking towards me.

“I cleared my schedule for things here baby,” I replied as he smiled and then looked at me.  “Is there something else we need to take care of?”

“Nikki invited us to dinner,” he replied as he looked at his watch and then turned around.  “Caleb, TV time is over buddy, we have to go visit your school.”

“Okay Daddy,” Caleb replied as he picked up the remote, turned off the television and then slid off the sofa as he walked over to the two of us.  “We go now?”

“In a moment,” JT replied as he looked at me.  “Are you ready to go Justin?  You’ve been in here for over an hour, just looking out the windows.  You got something on your mind or…”

“I was just admiring the scenery of our new place baby,” I said, leaning in and kissing his mouth.  “I’m ready when you are.”

“Cool, let’s go,” he said as he took Caleb by the hand as the three of us walked out of the room, heading towards the garage—a garage that is slightly smaller than what I’m used to seeing, like the one out in Jacksonville that seems to have a car for every day of the week.  Shoot, who am I to talk?  At my old place out in Memphis, I had five cars, two shy of him.

Across Town – The Hyatt Regency Century Plaza – The Lobby

Mo’ette’s POV

Why in the hell did I bring my ass back to this damn hotel?  He already made his choice.  He chose that ho over me.  There’s really nothing more for me to do here.  He told me that he married her and that he’s going to be with her.  For the life of me, I don’t know why.  What does that ho have that I don’t?

Why can’t I let this go?  I know what he said, but I don’t believe he really meant any of it.  After all that we’ve been through over the past few years, something deep within me is telling me not to let him or this thing that we have go.  Why Lord, why am I being put through this trial?

“Well, look who it is,” I heard behind me as I turned around to see the ho in question.  “It seems the old whore is still breathing.  Haven’t you cried your heart out and died?”

“Leave her alone Emily,” I heard David say as I shook my head.

“Look here heffa, I’m in no mood to deal with the bullshit that you’re spewing,” I said as I pointed my finger in her face as her eyes widened a bit.  Apparently, she hasn’t taken the hint that I’ll drop her ass in a matter of seconds.  “And furthermore, I don’t need you sticking up for me David.”

“I was only…” David said as I pointed my finger at him.  “Mo, please…  There’s no reason for you to be here, doing this sort of thing.  We already…”

“Since you two are in the mood of thinking that I’m down and out, I got something for you,” I said as I cleared my throat as a song that JT had been working on, flowing through my soul and out my mouth.

[1]Did you think my life would end that day
That you walked out when you broke my heart
Did you think I couldn’t make it through
Ooh, without you
Did you think you’d stop my world with goodbye, oh no
Did you think I’d crumble inside

Not Me, I’m still breathing
And this heart of mine is still beating
I, I’m not feeling any pain
No baby, not me, I’m still breathing
This old heart of mine is still beating
The tears I cried have dried
You are gone and I survived
I’m still breathing

There were times when it took all my strength
To just get through, yeah, through another day
There were so many nights I thought that I was gonna die
Without you
But the tears I cried somehow made me strong, so strong
Did you think I couldn’t go on

Not Me, I’m still breathing
And this heart of mine is still beating
I, I’m not feeling any pain
No baby, not me, I’m still breathing
You are gone and I survived
I’m still breathing

You tried to cut me down
But look who’s still around
Without you
Did you think you’d stop my world with good bye, no baby
Did you think I’d crumble, just crumble inside

Not Me, I’m still breathing
And this heart of mine is still beating
I, I’m not feeling any pain
No baby, not me, I’m still breathing
This old heart of mine is still beating
The tears I cried have dried
You are gone and I survived
I’m still breathing
The tears I cried have dried
You are gone and I survived
I’m still breathing

“Hmph, I got the meaning of the song,” the bitch said as I shook my head as a few people that had gathered around us, clapped and cheered as I took a bow and then walked away, leaving those two fools there as I stopped at the door and then turned around to see that David had tears in his eyes.  Damn it, something’s not right here.

Jacksonville, FL (Arlington Suburb) – The Apartment of Joshua Raymond

Josh’s POV

Damn, what am I going to do with all of this stuff here?  Should I keep it all, putting it into a storage unit some place or should I get rid of it all?  Sighing deeply, I looked around the room, moving over to the different things—things I’ve collected over the years.  The Lord knows I have too much stuff here to faithfully decide about what to do with.  All the stuff here has a distinct memory for me.

“Lord, what am I going to do with all of this stuff?”  I asked aloud as I continued walking around the room, stopping in my bedroom as I looked at the different pieces of furniture in there that I had collected throughout the years.

Where am I going to put these things in my new place with my brother?  I guess I’ll have everything I want shipped out to the new place, like JT suggested and I really don’t know what to do about the rest of this stuff.  I just don’t know what to do about the other stuff that I’m not taking with me.  JT tried to convince me to just get rid of it all and get new stuff when I actually got out to Los Angeles.  I don’t see anything wrong with this stuff… Therefore, there’s no point in getting rid of it.  I don’t see any point of spending money to get new stuff, when this stuff is just as good as anything new I could possibly buy.  The way JT acted, it seemed to me like he was trying to say that my stuff wasn’t good enough for his—our home.

“Am I really doing the right thing here?  Is moving out to Los Angeles with him and Justin the right thing for me to be doing?” I asked aloud as someone knocked on the door.  “Who could that be?”

Putting the picture album down, I walked out of the room and headed to the front door as I looked through the peephole to see my adoptive brother Brad, standing outside with that evil heffa Layla.  What in the hell is she doing here with him?  Sighing, I opened the door, grabbed him by the arm and pulled him in quickly, trying to close the door to keep her out as my cat Sparky put up a fuss at the commotion that was going on.

“What in the hell is going on Josh?”  Brad asked as I finally got the door completely closed as she banged on the door.  “Josh, what’s going on?  Why you didn’t let her in?”

“Because she’s not welcomed here,” I replied as he looked at me strangely.

“Bro, what’s going on?”  Brad asked as the knocking and banging got louder and then she started yelling.  “Why aren’t you letting her in?”

“I don’t want to see her, she’s not welcomed here,” I replied as he shook his head.

“Bro, she just wants to talk to you,” he said as I shook my head.

“Well I don’t want to talk to her Bradley,” I replied as he frowned.

“Why not?” He asked.

“She’s a waste of time,” I replied as he raised an eye.  “She’s done nothing but string me along and break my heart!”

“I don’t think she strung you along bro,” he said as I shook my head at him as the knocking and banging continued.

“Get away from the door or I’m calling the cops!”  I yelled as his eyes widened as the noise stopped as someone outside yelled, ‘Thank You’ as Brad looked at me as if I were crazy.  “Why are you looking at me like that?”

“Why did you threaten to call the cops on your girl like that?”  He asked.

“She’s not my girl anymore,” I replied as he shook his head again.  “So, what’s up bro, what brings you by?”

“I’m here to see if you’ll reconsider leaving,” he said as I shook my head.  “You don’t have to leave here, to have a relationship with—with your real brother.”

“No, I don’t have to leave here to have a relationship with him and my family, but I’m choosing to leave for me and other reasons,” I said as he looked down.

“Does your decision have anything to do with Uncle…” He said as I shook my head and then raised my hand, stopping him from saying more.

“I’m doing this for me,” I said as he sighed.  “I would very much like to have a relationship with my family and I can’t do that here.  There are too many ghosts of my past, lingering around me here to cause problems.  I know my decision to leave here may hurt your feelings, but I…”

“Yeah, it hurts my feelings Josh, but I don’t want to lose you,” he said as he moved closer and then wrapped his arms around me.  “We’ve been through too much over the years and I’m not ready for the man that I’ve called my brother all these years to just up and leave.”

“I’m still your brother and we’ll keep in touch, but JT is my brother too and I would like to get to know my brother, the way I know you as my brother,” I said as he frowned and then sniffled.  “We’ve known each other since I was four years old and you’re my adoptive brother.  JT is my biological brother and—and we don’t know anything about each other.  The stuff I know about him is mainly what I’ve read in the magazines about him.  I know you think I’m making a mistake here, but this is a once in a lifetime opportunity for me to get to know my family, my real family and I aim to do it.”

“He’s not going to treat you like family Josh,” he said, looking down at his hands.  “This is probably just some celebrity pity thing for him.”

“I don’t think it is Brad,” I said, thinking that very thing myself.  “He seems to genuinely care for me.”

“Does he care about you or does it have something to do about how that fans would react to knowing that he didn’t connect with his brother?”  He asked as he placed a hand on my shoulder.

“JT—JT is very family oriented,” I said, looking down at the floor.  “He has a husband, a son, he has connections with mom and dad, our mom and our dad, not your parents and he—he seems to want the family connection with me.”

“Are you doing this because of Layla and Uncle Walden?”  He asked as I sighed.  “Are you doing this to escape the memories of what he did to you—to us?”

“Why are you talking about that Brad?”  I asked as I felt the tears sliding down my face. “What’s the point in bringing that stuff up?”

“He—he hurt us, but he can’t hurt us anymore,” he said with a frown.  “We’re grown now and he’s not here to do anything to us.”

“No, he can’t hurt us anymore, mainly because he’s in prison,” I said as he frowned again.  “When he gets out of prison, I won’t be here for him to try again.  I’m not going to give him the chance to try to make a move on me.  Because of your Uncle Walden, I always wondered about my feelings for people.  Because of him, I don’t know if I loved girls or guys.”

“What are you trying to say Josh?”  He asked.

“I’m trying to say—say that I don’t know if I’m gay or straight,” I said, finally getting those words out of my system and into the open.  “For the longest time, I didn’t know if I liked boys or girls.  Had it not been for your Uncle Walden, I would’ve been able to make that choice on my own, instead I got used and abused by him!  Because of his actions, I don’t understand how to trust my feelings with other boys—men!”

“So, you—you’re telling me that you—you’re gay, possibly?”  He asked as I looked up and then shrugged my shoulders.

“I don’t know if I’m gay or what,” I replied as he sighed.  “I don’t know because I’m scared to trust my feelings around other men.  Each man I’ve been around with, I get scared they’re going to do the things to me that Walden did.  Do you know how hard it is to trust your feelings when you’re scared that someone’s going to hold you down and rape you, if you close your eyes around them?”

“I—I don’t know what to say to that Josh,” he said as I looked down.  “What about Layla?”

“What about her?”  I asked.

“Why didn’t things last with her?”  He asked as I shook my head.

“Because she’s an evil bitch that couldn’t stay out of jail long enough for anyone to build something with her,” I said as he looked at me strangely.

“So, you knew about her being in and out of jail?”  He asked as I nodded my head.

“Yeah, I knew about her being in jail and the prison time,” I replied as he looked down and then rubbed his head.  “She’s another reason why I believe that me being away from here and starting some place fresh would be beneficial.”

“Things could be beneficial here bro,” he said as I shook my head.  “Please Josh, please think about Mom and Dad, think about all of the people here that…”

“You want me to think about the people that allowed your uncle to use and abuse me,” I said as he sighed.  “You want me to think about the doctors that poked and prodded on and in me, because our parents thought there was something wrong with me, because I told them about the things your uncle did to me.”

“Josh…” He started as I shook my head and then kept on going.

“You want me to think about you, Olivia, Pam and Keisha, the people that I’ve always looked up to and thought were my friends, but none of you lifted a finger to help me when I needed it and I ended up here, in this place, a place where I had no choice but to run to, so I wouldn’t end up in a mental health institution.  What am I supposed to see that is so beneficial here Brad?”  I asked.

“When you put it like that, I—I don’t know,” he said as I looked him in the face.  “Does your brother know about your mental health issues?”

“He doesn’t care,” I said as he looked at me funny and then shook his head.

“Did you tell him about your issues Josh?  Does he or that husband of his know?”  He asked.

“Does that really matter Brad?  Why is that a concern all of a sudden?”  I asked.

“It’s a concern because I don’t want anything happening to you, I love you man,” he said as I shook my head at him.  “Regardless of what you think, I’ll always love you, blood or not.  We grew up together man, we are brothers.”

“Yeah, we’re brothers, but it seems I’m the brother that took the brunt of things,” I said as he sighed again.  “Regardless of what you say or do here Brad, I’m still leaving and I’m going to be with my real family.  Good or bad, I’m going to live my life—a life I should’ve lived a long time ago.”

“Josh, I—I hope you know what you’re doing,” he said, shaking his head as he leaned in and hugged me.  “If you need me, you know I’ll always be here for you.”

“I know Brad, but this is something I have to do,” I said, pulling away from him.  “I may not act like it, but I do love you too Brad, but my brother needs some family love and that’s why it’s time I show him some.”

“Well if something goes wrong…” he said as I shook my head.

“Nothing’s going to go wrong Brad,” I said, turning around.  “I’m going to get on a plane tonight and tomorrow, my new life in Los Angeles starts with my brother, his son and his husband.”

“I hope you’re right about things,” he said, hugging me once more as he turned and walked towards the door.  “I love you man, take it easy.”

“You too,” I said as he opened the door, waved and then walked out of the room, closing the door behind him.

Now, I need to get back to what I’m going to do with all of this stuff.  With the conversation I just had, I’ve made up my mind.  I’ll just put everything here in storage and if something happens, I’ll have it to come back to or go someplace else.  I guess that would be my contingency plan if something bad happens and I need to leave Los Angeles.  With that decided, I guess when I get out to Los Angeles tomorrow, I’ll just go shopping and get some new stuff.  Okay new life, here I come.

Somewhere in Grand Junction, TN – The Studio Apartment of Laci Greylek – The Front Yard

“Get the hell off of my damn property!”  Laci screamed as a few police officers stood out in front of the building.

“I’m sorry Ms. Greylek, but you’ve been warned about your actions towards others, plenty of times.  Now isn’t a joking matter,” a sheriff’s deputy spoke as he walked around the car to stand at the edge of the yard.  “Is Me-Ma in there?”

“Yeah, she in there, why you want to know?”  Laci asked, watching the man as he approached the door.

“You might as well leave little PJ with her and come on with me.”

“I’m not going anywhere with you Darby!  You tell that fucker to shove that damn warrant up his fucking ass!”  Laci screamed as the baby cried in her arms.  “I’m not letting you or any of those fuckers take my baby!”

“Come on now Ms. Greylek, don’t make matters worse than what they already are,” the sheriff’s deputy spoke as he hiked up the belt of his pants and then walked up to the front door.  “Go on now, pass little PJ over to Me-Ma and you come with me.  The sooner you take care of this matter, the quicker you’ll get back here to be with little PJ.”

“I said fuck off Darby!  Take your fat ass somewhere else with that shit!”  Laci yelled as she shook the baby gently, trying to get him to stop crying.  “Come on PJ, you gotta stop crying for mommy.”

“Ms. Greylek, don’t make me force you to come with me,” the sheriff’s deputy said, looking over the top of his shades.  “If I have to, I’ll drag you down to the office, kicking and screaming girl.”

“Do it Darby and you’ll fucking regret it,” Laci stated as she pointed her finger in the man’s direction.  “I’m not going anywhere with you or anyone else.”


[1] Song Excerpt = ‘I’m Still Breathing’ by Toni Braxton

To Be Continued…

When The Glitter Turns Gold – Chapter 18


Chapter 18 — The Truth and Heather’s Fan

Jul 24, 2004 – New York City, NY – Madison Square Gardens – The Backstage Area

JT’s POV

“Thank God it’s the weekend,” I said in a sarcastic way as Caleb and I followed Justin and his security team around the area, checking for possible security flaws while his crew set things up for his show later on tonight.  “A few more hours and we can get some rest.”

“Daddy, are we still going to the zoo?”  Caleb asked, looking up at me.

“When Justin…” I said as Justin turned around and interrupted me.

“Baby, why don’t you two go ahead and head on to the zoo.  I’ll join you guys a bit later on,” Justin suggested as he leaned in and kissed my mouth.  “There’s no point in you two being cooped up here with me, while I’m working.”

“Justin, we planned on going to the zoo as a…” I said as he placed a finger to my lips, stopping me from talking.

“I know baby, but I have a bit more work here to do and as I said, there’s no reason for you two being cooped up here with me,” he said as I sighed.  “I promise baby, when I’m done with things here, I’ll be right there with you two.”

“Are you sure about that Justin?”  I asked, looking him in the face as he nodded his head.

“Yeah baby, I’m sure,” he replied as he leaned in and kissed my mouth again.  “You two go on ahead and I’ll join you, just as soon as I’m finished here.”

“Okay,” I replied with a pout, hoping he noticed that I wasn’t entirely happy with his decision as I looked down at Caleb again.  “Where are Marty and David?”

“I think they’re outside in the car, waiting,” he replied as one of the crew members walked over, getting his attention and showing him something on a piece of paper.

“Well you have fun here, we’ll see you when you’re done,” I said, taking Caleb’s hand as we walked down the corridor that led to the exit, so we could leave and head on to the zoo.

I hope he knows I’m totally pissed off with him right now.  Today is starting to look like our family plans are not going to be attended by all of the family.  What was the point of us making plans to do something as a family, if he’s not able to actually do what we planned?  When he told Caleb that we would visit the Zoo here in New York for his birthday, I knew that would be a big mistake.  He knows better than to make a promise to a child that he knew he wasn’t able to keep.  Hell, if I’d known that he was here, doing work for his concert for tonight, I would’ve had Marty and David take us on to the hotel, so we could get some more rest, instead of having them bring us here.  I was under the impression that we came here to pick him up, so we could start our plans, but I see that was a mistake on my part.

“Daddy, is there something wrong?”  Caleb asked as we made it outside to the car, but Marty and David were nowhere around.

“No son, why do you ask?”  I asked, looking at him as he frowned at me.

“Because I had to walk fast to keep up with you,” he replied as I frowned.

“I—I’m sorry,” I said, pulling him to me and hugging him.  “I didn’t mean to drag you.  I’m just in a hurry to get our plans started is all.”

“I want to go to the zoo too Daddy,” he said as I noticed Marty walking around the corner of the building with David, following behind him, zipping up his pants.  Lawd, please tell me those two aren’t up to no good.

“Well security is here, so we get to go,” I said with a smile as I stood up and waved Marty over.  “It’s just the two of us, Justin isn’t coming, he’ll pop up later on when he’s done here.”

“Okay sir,” Marty spoke with that look that made me wonder if he really liked me or not and just tolerated me because I’m married to Justin.  “Are you ready to go?”

“Yes, we’re ready,” I replied as he opened the door as Caleb and I got into the backseat.

Almost Two Hours Later – Central Park Zoo

JT’s POV

Damn, it’s been a long day and it’s not even one o’clock yet.  It’s a little after lunch time and I’m already beat.  So far, we’ve been around to see the snow monkeys, the grizzly bears, the sea lions and the pandas.  At each exhibit we visited, Caleb made sure he got a keepsake to remember that he came here to the Zoo.  Hell, he was so entertained by the grizzly bears, that we circled back to see them again and while we were there, he picked up another keepsake, a big stuffed grizzly bear, a teddy bear that’s bigger than he is.  I’m thankful that Marty and David are with us because I wasn’t able to carry everything he’s picked up so far.  I’m not trying to spoil the boy, but this is his birthday outing and I want it to be a memorable one, even if Justin isn’t here with us.

With some of Caleb’s energy levels waning, we got to sit down at a table to get some rest.  Yes, I need the rest, this little boy has walked me rampant, so to speak.  Now that we’ve gotten a bit of rest, we’re trying to decide what we’re going to do about lunch.  I thought Justin would’ve been around with us, but apparently, he’s not here yet.  When I get my hands on him, he might as well hang it up.

“Daddy, do they have hamburgers here?”  Caleb asked as I looked at the map of the park to see what was near us.

“I don’t know buddy boy,” I replied as I scanned the map closely, not happy with what I saw.  Hell, I don’t feel like walking all the way back to the front of the place to go to that little café we passed coming in and I sure as hell don’t want…

“Hello handsome,” I heard Justin’s voice as I turned around to see him hovering above me, standing behind the bench.

“Finally,” I said, giving him the ‘look’ as he frowned and then moved around the bench quickly as he sighed and then sat down next to me.  “You wait until we have a good moment alone.”

“I’m sorry baby,” he whispered to me.

“Yeah, I’m sure you will be when we have that good moment alone,” I whispered back to him as he frowned again.  “We’re trying to figure out what to do about lunch.”

“I already got that covered,” he said as he looked at me.  “Come on.”

“Where are we going?”  I asked as he stood up quickly and then pulled me up.

“Don’t worry about it, just come on,” he said as he took Caleb’s hand.  “Come on buddy, I know you want a burger.”

“How did you know that Justin?”  Caleb asked with a smile.

“Because that’s what my little man likes,” he said as Caleb giggled.

“Where are we going Justin?”  I asked as we walked along as I noticed that people were watching us.

“We’re almost there,” Justin replied as I saw Marty and David heading in opposite directions.

“Ah Justin, where are Marty and David going?”  I asked, noticing that we had exited the zoo and was walking down Fifth Avenue.

“They are going to put away Caleb’s things,” he answered as I shook my head.  “Don’t sweat it baby, we’re almost to where we’re going.”

“Are you sure?”  I asked, looking around as I noticed a few guys from his security detail walking near us.

Okay, now that I’ve recognized some of his security guys, I feel a bit better and safer.  I don’t want there to be another scene like it was when we were at the Landing in Jacksonville.  That was a horrible experience for Caleb to go through and I don’t want him to experience anything like that again, anytime soon.

“Daddy, look!”  Caleb squealed as we approached, I guess our destination.  “Look at all the people.”

“I see,” I replied, looking around as we trekked into Central Park.

Where are we going?  Why does it seem like Justin is being secretive all of a sudden?  I’m not liking this one bit and when I get the chance, I’m going to let him know just how I feel about all of this.  I didn’t drag me and Caleb here, just so he could work and leave us to our own devices.  We could’ve stayed back in Jacksonville and would’ve been just fine.  I’m tired and hungry and all of this is getting to be a bit…

“We’re here,” Justin announced as we arrived at a picnic table that was already decked out with food as a few of his tour crew worked on bringing more stuff to the table.

“What is all of this?”  I asked, trying to figure out what was going on around us.

“It’s our lunch,” he replied with a smile.

“Duh, I know what food looks like Justin,” I sarcastically said as he frowned.  “What is all of this?”

“I wanted to do something special for my husband and…” he said as I held up my hand, stopping him.

“So, you orchestrated some kind of special luncheon for us in a public park, where others could see and possibly intrude,” I said as he frowned again.  “What a perfect plan there Justin.”

“Baby,” he said as I shook my head and then held up my hand.  “What’s going on baby?  Why are you not happy about this?”

“Had I known you would be working today, Caleb and I could’ve stayed back in Jacksonville,” I said as he frowned again.  “Today was supposed to be about family, not you going off to work, leaving the two of us to do things by ourselves.”

“I—I’m sorry baby, there were some last-minute changes for tonight’s show and I…” he said as I shook my head.

“I’m sure you knew about those ‘last minute’ changes before we jumped on a plane to come out here,” I said as he sighed.  “We could’ve done this some other time.”

“Yes, we could have done this some other time, but I didn’t want to break my promise to Caleb,” he said as he looked down.  “I don’t want him thinking I’m a liar, baby.”

“He wouldn’t have thought you were a liar,” I said as he frowned.

“Baby, you know how he is about promises,” he said as we both looked over at Caleb as Marty kept him busy.  “I was only trying to keep my word to him.  I didn’t know there were going to be so many problems with the crew this morning.”

“Still, you just wait until we get a good moment alone,” I said as he sighed again.

“Okay, I’ll look forward to you reaming me a new one later on,” he said as I pulled him close and kissed his lips as Caleb giggled.  What is it with that boy with the giggling when he sees us kissing?

“I’m hungry, what do we have?”  I asked.

“To start, my buddy Caleb has a cheeseburger with all the fixings and some fries and milk,” Justin replied as he motioned with his head as Marty removed the cover from Caleb’s food.  “We have grilled salmon…”

“Ooooh, grilled salmon with what baby?”  I asked.

“Grilled salmon, seasoned with lemon,” he said as I rubbed my hands together in anticipation of the meal.  “Grilled peppers, steamed rice, garlic bread sticks and sweet tea.”

“Stop the talking and serve the food,” I said as he smiled and then got up as he moved around the table and then grabbed some food containers, placing one in front of me and the other in front of his spot.

“Buddy, there is another burger and fries, if that’s not enough,” he said, looking over at Caleb as he poked a few fries in his mouth.  Lawd, if he doesn’t slow down, he’s going to choke himself.  Why does he eat like that?  Did Heather not feed him enough?

“Okay Justin, thank you,” Caleb replied, taking a bite of the burger and then taking a sip of his milk.

“This looks so delicious,” I said as the aroma filled my nostrils.  Lawd, it’s on now.

He’s so lucky that I’m hungry right now.  Had it not been for those hunger pains in my gut, trying to take me out, I would still be on his case.  Besides, I don’t feel like keeping this drama going.  I’ll deal with him later on.  I think after I’ve calmed my nerves a bit, we’ll have a discussion about priorities and how he needs to deal with them in the future.  After an hour had passed, we were all done eating our meal and to say the least, I’m totally full.  I don’t know about Justin, but I don’t feel like dragging this body anywhere now.

“Are you okay baby?”  Justin asked as he looked at me.

“I’m full,” I answered as he smiled.

“I’m full too,” he said as he patted my leg.  “Do you want to go find a place to be alone, so you can fuss at me?”

“Naw, I’ll fuss at you later on,” I replied as he shook his head and then leaned in and kissed my lips.

“I don’t care if you fuss at me, I still love you baby,” he said as he draped his arm over my shoulder as Caleb played around with Marty.

Wow, it seems Marty is great with Caleb.  From what I know about the man, he’s never been married and he doesn’t have any kids.  The two of them seem to get along perfectly and so far, Caleb doesn’t have any complaints.  It’s almost as if Caleb has an adult playmate when Marty is around.  With the way things are going, I might have to lure him away from Justin and hire him to be a security guard and nanny for Caleb, mainly for when I’m on the road or when we’re out in about.

“Baby, what’s on your mind, besides being full?”  Justin asked, caressing my cheek.  “We have four hours of free time.  What are we going to do with it?”

“This is fine,” I replied as Caleb and Marty continued playing.  “Look at those two… They seem to be having a great time.”

“Yay, everybody enjoys playing freeze tag,” he said as I shook my head and then laughed.

“Well I’m stuck in this spot, I’m already frozen,” I said as I looked over the rim of my glasses at him.  “Speaking of frozen, I thought I saw ice cream and cake over there.”

“You did baby, but that’s for a later time,” he replied as I shook my head.

“Oh no, we’re not giving him ice cream and cake later on, for him to re-energize and run me rampant,” I said as Justin raised an eye at me.  “If he’s going to have the sweets, you best give it to him now, while there’s someone around to tire him out.”

“Okay baby,” Justin said, giggling as he got up from the bench and walked over to the containers were the food was.  “Hey buddy, I have a surprise for you.”

“You have a surprise for who?”  Caleb asked, stopping as he looked at Justin.

“For you buddy,” Justin replied as he motioned with his head for Caleb to come over.

“What is it?”  Caleb asked as he walked over to the table, standing next to Justin.

“This,” Justin replied as he lifted the cover off of one of the containers, revealing the cake and ice cream.  “Happy Birthday again.”

“Oh boy, cake and ice cream,” Caleb said as he turned and looked at me.  “Daddy, we having cake and ice cream?”

“Y’all are having cake and ice cream, I’m too full for anything else,” I replied, waving my hand dismissively at the two of them.  “Enjoy yourself sonny boy.”

“Okay Daddy,” Caleb replied as Justin grabbed a bowl from another container and then cut the cake, placing the slice into the bowl and then dipped out some ice cream, adding it to the side of the cake in the bowl.

“Here you go buddy,” Justin said as he prepared another bowl with cake and ice cream in it.  “Marty, you want some?”

“Sure thing sir,” Marty replied as he walked over as Justin pointed at the cake and the ice cream.

Later that Evening – Madison Square Gardens

Justin’s POV

Lord, please give me the peace and serenity to overlook the crazy people around me, because if you give me strength, JT’s going to need bail money to get me out of jail.  With all the crap going on, I can’t believe someone was stupid enough to place a damn paper cup, full of liquid, atop an amplifier!  What the hell was that person thinking?  I don’t know what that person was thinking, but they couldn’t have been using common damn sense.  Did they actually think them placing a cup of damn water on top of an amplifier would be safe?

“Justin, half of the stage electronics aren’t working properly,” one of the crew technicians spoke as I shook my head.  “The guy from the city is here to look things over also.”

“So basically, the show isn’t going to be a go, is that it?”  I asked, looking at the technician as he shrugged his shoulders and then slunk backwards, moving away from me.

“Look, am I going to be able to perform here tonight or what?”  I asked as another technician walked over to where I and the guy was.  “What’s the real problem here?”

“The real problem here is when the amplifier blew, it sent a surge through all the nearby circuits, causing everything connected to short,” the other guy said as I shook my head.

“Is there a way around these problems?”  I asked as the guy nodded his head.  “Which is?”

“Reschedule your concert for a later time, a different day,” he suggested as I shook my head.

“I can’t do that, this show has to go off tonight,” I said, thinking about all the crap Sheldon talked with me about tonight’s show and how bad I need to get back into the swing of things.

“Right now, we can try to patch things up, but it’s not a guarantee,” the guy said as I motioned with my hand for him to get to it.  My show is supposed to be starting soon.

This is outrageous!  Is someone trying to cause problems for me today or what?  Because of the actions of one dumb ass person, things have been delayed.  My crew has been doing their best to replace things and get things set up, in a working order, but the people here at Madison Square Gardens’ are acting as if they could care less if my show went on or not.  I wonder what’s up with that shit?

I’m really waiting for the next bomb to drop around here.  With all that’s happened to me today, I don’t think this show is really going to go off without a hitch, like it should.  One of the stage crew has been on the phone for the last hour, trying to get the needed equipment here and the way she’s looking, I don’t think she’s had much luck either.  We have less than an hour left to get things fixed, so the show can start without any problems.  I don’t feel like having to go through the process of having to refund customers’ their money back and reschedule a show.  If I have to, I will do this show acapella, like they did shows back in the old days.  I have too much on my plate and rescheduling a one-night show isn’t something I have time for.

“Yo Justin, if we don’t put too much strain on the power system, things should work out fine,” one of the stage technician’s stated as he walked over with a clipboard.  “You may not get to use some of your special pyrotechnics in this show, but you’ll be able to keep the music and the screens going.”

“Great,” I said as I looked around.  “So, things will start as scheduled?”

“We’re going to try that, being that you weren’t able to properly rehearse,” the guy said with a weak smile.

“Well I’ll pray that everything goes off without a hitch,” I said as I shook the man’s hand and then walked towards the area where JT and Caleb were supposed to be.

A Few Hours Later – The Samson-Chek Hotel – Justin and JT’s Hotel Suite

“Baby, is he still asleep?”  Justin asked as he, JT and Marty walked into the room.

“Yeah, he’s out like a light,” JT replied as he turned his head to look at Caleb in his arms.  “He’s been out since way before we left the Square.”

“Do you want me to take him JT?”  Marty asked as he looked over at JT.

“I’m good,” JT replied with a smile.  “I’ll just put him to bed and I’ll be right back.”

“So, did JT talk with you?”  Justin asked, looking over at Marty.

“No sir, is there something wrong?”  Marty asked, looking at Justin with a concerned look on his face.

“No, there’s nothing wrong at all,” Justin responded as he stepped closer to Marty.  “It seems there…”

“He’s in bed and I’m starved,” JT announced as he reentered the room, stopping Justin and Marty’s talk.  “Did I miss something?”

“No baby, I was just about to tell Marty about what a good job he’s been doing with Caleb,” Justin stated as Marty looked at him and then over at JT.

“Oh good,” JT said with a smile. “So, are you going to do it Marty?”

“Do what?”  Marty asked, looking at JT strangely as Justin shook his head and then giggled.

“Baby, I didn’t ask him yet,” Justin spoke, looking over at JT as Marty just looked between both men.

“You haven’t asked me what sir?”  Marty spoke, looking at Justin.

“We would like to know if you would be interested in coming to work full time for us,” Justin stated as he looked at Marty.  “Meaning you’d be one of our personal security guards and Caleb’s protector when he’s out and about in public.  What do you say?”

“Full time, meaning all the time, twenty-four seven?” Marty spoke as Justin nodded his head.  “I… Ah… I don’t know what to say sir.”

“There’s a raise in it for you if you say yes,” JT stated with a smile.  “There are plenty of benefits of this position.”

“Such as what sir?”  Marty asked, looking over at JT.

“More money, you get to live with us, you wouldn’t be constantly changing projects and working for other people.  We would be the only ones you work for,” JT stated, still smiling.  “Plus, you’d have constant company when Caleb is around, he enjoys hanging out with you, it seems.”

“He’s a good kid sir,” Marty replied as he rubbed his head.  “A raise would be good and not changing clients often would be great.  When do I need to give you two an answer?”

“There’s no rush in this matter,” JT stated as he walked around Marty and got close to Justin.  “Man, I’m calling room service and order food.  You want something?”

“Yeah, just get me whatever you’re going to get,” Justin responded as JT raised an eye at him.

“I don’t think that would work,” JT stated as Justin looked at him.  “I’m in the mood for tons of junk food and…”

“You?  You’re going to get junk food?”  Justin asked, fake gasping as he shook his head.  “I knew there was a junk food nut in there somewhere.”

“I eat junk food, just not often handsome,” JT stated as he walked over to the phone and pressed the number on the phone to call room service.  “I feel like pizza, fries and a milk shake.”

“Sounds good to me,” Justin stated with a smile.

“Marty, do you want something?”  JT asked, looking over at the man.

“No thank you, I picked up something before we left the venue,” Marty replied with a smile.  “But thanks anyway.  If I’m needed, I’ll be in the room.”

“Alright Marty,” Justin replied as he waved as JT sat down on the sofa in the room and talked on the phone, placing their order as he walked over to the windows in the room, looking out at the lights of the city.

Philadelphia, PA – FairView Mental Hospital – Heather’s Room

“What’s the problem here?”  The resident technician asked, walking into the room and turning on the lights.  “Is there a problem Heather?”

“No, there isn’t a problem,” Heather replied as she sniffled and then wiped at her eyes.

“If there’s no problem, why are you crying?”  The resident technician asked, stepping further into the room.

“I said there wasn’t a problem,” Heather stated, sniffling as the resident technician shook her head and then turned around, turning the light off in the room.  “Good fucking night.”

“Keep it up Heather, you’ll lose another day of privileges,” the resident technician stated as Heather shot her the bird.

“What is it with you Heather?”  The resident technician asked, turning the light back on in the room and leaning against the doorframe.  “Why is it always you that causes problems on my shift?  You know, I don’t like the ones like you that like to cause problems for me.  I like my shifts to go smoothly and right now, it’s not going that way.”

“Screw you,” Heather stated, waving her hand dismissively at the woman.

“No thank you, you’re not my type,” the resident technician spoke with a sneer.  “I hear your type is the kind that isn’t awake to say ‘no’ to you.  I’m awake and I know how to say ‘no’ and if you don’t listen to the words, I’m sure there are other conscious ways to get you off of me, unlike the guy you took advantage of while he was unconscious.”

“I didn’t take advantage of anyone,” Heather stated as she shook her head, covering her ears.  “Get out!  Get out of here!”

“That’s probably what that gay man would have said to you if he had known you were looking to have sex with him, but you didn’t give him that option, now did you?”  The resident technician asked, smirking as the tears streamed down Heather’s face more.  “How damn pitiful are you?  It’s a damn shame that you had to drug a gay man, wait for him to be unconscious and then have sex with him, just to get your damn thrill.  That’s some fucked up shit there.”

“Get the hell out!”  Heather screamed as the resident technician shook her head.

“Damn, you have to be real low on the damn chain if you had to stoop that low as to drug someone up and then rape them to get the pole,” the resident technician stated as she shook her head.  “Are you telling me that there were no other men available that you could get the pole from?  There weren’t any straight men around to get a stab at your cookie jar?  Come on, I want to know.  There weren’t any straight men around that wanted the cookie jar?”

“Why are you doing this?”  Heather asked as she wiped at her eyes, sliding to the back corner of her bed, leaning against the wall.  “I want you to leave and not come back!  Just leave me alone!”

“I’m sure that black guy would have said something like that, but you didn’t give him a chance to, now did you?”  The resident technician asked.

“No!  No, I didn’t give him a chance to do or say anything!”  Heather screamed as the resident technician’s eyes widened.  “Yes, I took advantage of him!  I took something from him, that he can never get back!  Is that what you wanted to fucking hear?  He said I was a monster and I guess I am, since all you fuckers keep treating me the same way!”

“What’s going on here?”  Another resident technician asked, walking into the room with Heather and the woman.

“It looks like Ms. Stewart is having a break-through,” the first resident technician stated with a smile.  “How long have I been down here?”

“Half an hour,” the other resident technician stated as the first turned around, turned off the light and then closed the door, leaving Heather in the corner of her bed, still crying.  “Are you going to call the counselor and report all of that?”

“Nah, she only said that to get a rise out of me,” the first resident technician stated as she looked into another room, checking on the patient in the room.  “She’s only seeking sympathy, she doesn’t really mean what she’s saying right now.  Had she meant it, she would’ve said it a long time ago, while she was in court, in front of a judge.  I think she’s only saying it now to get out of here.”

“I think I heard some emotion in that outcry,” the second resident technician stated with a frown.  “Maybe she’s finally coming to terms with her actions.”

“Maybe, maybe not,” the first resident technician stated as she shook her head.  “I still say she did it in an effort for her to get out of here.”

“Well think of it this way,” the second resident technician stated as she sighed.  “If she leaves here, she has nothing to go back to.  Once she’s released from here, she’s going to jail.  She’s lost the rights to her child and all the stuff she’s done will become public knowledge, she’ll have a felony record.”

“Well I guess she won’t be going back to Hollywood,” the first resident technician stated as the second sighed.

“No, she won’t be going back to Hollywood,” the second resident technician stated as they arrived at the resident station desk.  “She’ll be lucky to have any family interaction at all.”

“I guess she’ll have to see what the future holds,” the first resident technician stated as she took a seat and then started to type on the computer.

To Be Continued…

 

 

 

 

When The Glitter Turns Gold – Chapter 17


Chapter 17 — Holiday Changes

July 4, 2004 – Jacksonville, FL (Baymeadows Suburb) – The Home of JT Poole – The Backyard

“Hey girl, I’m glad you could make it,” JT said as he and Nikki embraced as she passed a covered dish to Justin.  “Where’s the little lady and Josh?”

“He’s getting her out of the jeep,” Nikki replied with a smile as she pulled back.  “Where’s your little one?”

“He’s around here somewhere, running around with Lance’s niece and Joey’s nephew,” JT stated as he looked around.  “Drinks are in the fridge, steaks, dogs and burgers are on the grill.  Do you need something right now?”

“I know where to find it handsome, if I do,” Nikki stated as she smiled and then turned around as Josh Charles walked up with his and Nikki’s daughter in his arms.

“Hello Summer,” JT spoke as he waved at the little girl.  “Hello Josh.”

“Hi,” the little girl spoke, giggling excitedly as JT tickled her belly.

“Hi JT,” Josh spoke with a plain look on his face.

“Justin’s out there with the kids somewhere,” JT stated as he pointed towards the far end of the backyard.  “If he’s not back there, then he’s in the game room.”

“Okay JT,” Josh spoke as he handed the little girl off to Nikki and then walked away.

“What’s his problem?”  JT asked as he motioned with his head at Josh.

“JT, don’t start nothing,” Nikki said as she raised an eye at him.  “It took a whole lot of convincing on my part that you wouldn’t bring up the past and…”

“Well, being that you brought it up,” JT said as Nikki glared at him.  “Fine, he gets a free pass for the day.  I’m not going to bother him.”

“Good,” Nikki replied as she leaned in and kissed JT on the cheek.  “We’re trying to heal our broken little family, not cause any problems.”

“Well I hope you save that speech for Glitter’s skanky ass,” JT stated as he shook his head.

“Is she here?”  Nikki asked as she looked around quickly.

“Not yet, but I have a feeling she’ll pop up real soon,” JT stated as Mo’ette walked over and hugged him.  “Hey girl, how you doing?”

“I’m here, aren’t I?”  She asked with a sad look on her face.

“Yeah, but I don’t see…” JT spoke as Mo’ette interrupted him.

“Let’s not even talk about David,” Mo’ette stated as she shook her head.

“My lips are sealed on that subject then,” JT stated as a few ladies walked over to him.  “Hello Syndi and you brought little Starletta along with you.  Are Dana and Lisa here?”

“Dana and Lisa are spending time with their families today,” Syndi Perry-Lambert spoke with a frown at JT’s reference to Starletta.

“Hello JT,” Starletta spoke as she rolled her eyes and then walked passed him, heading further into the yard.

“Girl, you better keep Ms. Fancy Pants on a tight leash around here.  I won’t bat an eye to kick her ass up out of here,” JT stated as he pointed his finger in Starletta’s direction.

“Don’t worry about her, you need to be worrying about her,” Syndi stated as she motioned with her head as JT turned to see Glitter walking towards them.  “Have fun with the girl that’s losing herself.”

“Oh ha ha ha, real funny girl,” JT said, giggling as Syndi walked off as Glitter walked up.  “Hello Glitter.”

“Hello JT,” Glitter spoke with a strange smirk on her face.

“Girl, don’t you start any trouble here today,” JT stated.  “I’m trying to be nice, but if I have to, I’ll kick your ass up out of here, faster than a baby daddy going to jail for non-payment of back child support he didn’t owe.”

“Whatever, I’m just here for the food,” Glitter spoke as JT shook his head and then walked off.

An Hour Later

Lance’s POV

We’ve been here for a few hours now and just being around the married couple, I feel like things between me and Joey are going downhill.  Why did we decide to come here in the first place?  I know what Joey is seeing is upsetting him on some level.  Just him seeing Justin interacting with JT has caused a reaction with him.  I’ve seen the way he’s been looking at Justin and JT and I know those reactions.  He’s angry, but why?  Is he upset about what he once had with Justin or is there something else?

Since we’ve been together, I sometimes wonder did I make a big mistake, hooking up with him, after Justin broke his heart.  Maybe I should’ve given him some more time to get over things.  At the time, I thought that if he had something else to focus on, he would be alright, but now, is he alright or what?

“Lance, are you okay?”  I heard Justin ask as I turned around to see him standing there with a cup in his hand, holding it out to me.

“I’m fine Justin,” I answered as he sighed and then looked down.  “Really, I’m fine Justin.”

“If you’re fine, why is Joey out there, playing around with the kids, while you’re over here, looking like someone shot your dog?”  He asked.

“Why do you even care Justin?”  I asked.

“I care because you’re my friend,” he replied as he attempted to touch me as I moved back.  “Sorry, I—I think I’ll go back over there.”

“Justin wait,” I said as he stopped walking and then turned around.

“Yes Lance,” he said with a hopeful look on his face.

“Why didn’t you marry Joey?”  I asked as he looked at me strangely.

“What?”  He said as I sighed.

“Why didn’t you marry Joey?”  I asked again as he shook his head.

“I didn’t marry him because he didn’t want to marry me,” he replied as I looked at him, wondering why he had just lied to me.

“What do you mean he didn’t want to marry you?”  I asked, grabbing his shoulder.  “He told me plenty of times that he was hurt because you refused to marry him.”

“I never refused to marry him,” he replied as he shook his head.  “He asked me to marry him, I said ‘yes’, but when it was time for us to get married, he changed his mind.”

“He changed his mind?”  I asked, wondering what he was talking about.

“Yeah, he changed his mind,” he replied as he shook his head.  “He said he wasn’t going to marry a man like me… a man he felt that was hung up on someone else.  He said I only agreed to marry him because I was trying to forget about JT and that I wasn’t serious about him.”

“Were you trying to forget about JT?”  I asked.

“No, I honestly had feelings for him, but he didn’t believe me,” he said as I shook my head, wondering about all the other things that Joey had said in regard to the relationship he and Justin had.  “So, we broke up a few months later and that was basically it.  What is this about Lance?”

“It’s about him,” I said, pointing at Joey.  “Since we’ve been here, he’s been acting strange.”

“Well maybe you should go talk with him and find out what’s going on buddy,” he said as he patted me on the back and then walked off.

Another Part of the Backyard

Josh Raymond’s POV

I feel so out of place and strange, being here with my brother and surrounded by all of these famous people.  I had no idea that my brother knew so many famous people.  When I found out that he was a star, I guess I underestimated how much of a star he was—is.  I just got here and I’ve already met tons of people that I never thought I would ever meet in a million years.  I guess being in my brother’s life, I’m going to have to get used to rubbing elbows with celebrities.  Then again, who’s to say that I’ll be around these people on a regular basis to…

“Josh, are you okay?”  I heard, snapping out of my thoughts to see Justin, my brother’s husband, standing in front of me with a cup in hand. “You look sorta lost.  Is everything okay, do you need anything?”

“I’m alright Justin, just my mind is a bit blown.  I—I didn’t know… I didn’t think there would be so many people here,” I said as he smiled.

“Well Josh, that’s something you’re going to have to get used to buddy,” he said as he looked around.  “Whenever there’s something that needs to be celebrated, JT goes all out it seems.”

“Yeah, I guess he does,” I said, spotting Keliah, a female singer I’ve always admired for her love songs and some guys from the group Informers, walking around with drinks in hand.  “This is a whole lot to take in.”

“I’m sure you’ll get used to it,” he said as Caleb, my nephew and some of the other kids around, ran passed me, playing with water guns.  “It looks like he’s having a great time.  You want to come?”

“I don’t th… Sure, I’ll go,” I said as he motioned with his head as I followed behind him, passing a few more celebrities that I’ve always wanted to see as I stopped in my tracks when I saw Gladys Knotts.

“Josh, is there something wrong?”  Justin asked as I just stood there, watching the woman that sang some of the songs that keep me holding on when I thought I was going to lose hope.

“I’m okay Justin,” I replied as he looked at my face and then looked around, spotting who I was looking at.

“Do you want to meet the Empress of Soul?”  Justin asked as I tried to speak, but no words came out of my mouth as all I could do was nod my head as he smiled and then giggled.  “Come on.”

“Well hello Mr. Poole,” Gladys Knotts spoke as I looked at her strangely as she patted Justin on the shoulder.  I guess she’s calling him that and not me.

“Hi,” Justin replied as all I could do was stare.

“And you’re JT’s brother, correct?”  She asked as Justin stepped to the side as I smiled wide, but my mouth still wasn’t working.

“This is my brother-in-law, Joshua Raymond and he’s so happy to meet you,” Justin spoke as Gladys Knotts stepped closer to me and then pulled me into a hug.

Oh God, Gladys Knotts is hugging me!  Oh God, this is a dream come true!  Wait, am I dreaming?  Am I still at home?  Please God, please let this be real.  Please don’t let this be one of those dreams that I have when I’m trying to get away from…

“Josh, Josh, are you okay buddy?”  I heard Justin’s voice as he patted me on the shoulder as I came back to reality.

“Huh… Oh yeah, I—I’m okay,” I replied as Gladys Knotts looked at me with some concern.  “I’m okay, just happy to be here, to meet one of my idols.  I’m in the presence of Mrs. Gladys Knotts.”

“Oh my, I’m someone’s idol,” Gladys Knotts said with a smile as she leaned in and kissed me on the cheek.  “It’s always good to be an idol, but I enjoy being a normal person like everyone else.  You can call me Gladys.”

“O—okay Gladys,” I said as she smiled and then waved as she patted Justin on the shoulder and then walked off.  “Oh my God, that was a dream come true.”

“Around here, I’m sure a lot of dreams come true,” Justin said as Caleb ran passed us again as I got splattered with water.

“Hey, I’m going to get all three of you!”  Justin yelled as he grabbed a water gun, handed it to me and then grabbed another as he took off running behind the kids.  “Come on Josh.”

“You can’t get me Uncle Josh!”  Caleb squealed as he shot me with some water as he ran off with the other kids again as Justin chased after him.

“Can I join in?”  I heard Dad’s voice as I turned around to see him standing there.  “Hi son.”

“Hi,” I replied as he leaned in and gave me a hug.

“Looks like everyone is having a good time around here,” he said as he waved his hand as the young man that works for him walked over.

“Yes sir,” the young boy said as Dad looked at him and then motioned at the table where the drinks were.  “Yes sir, right away sir.”

“Dad, who is that guy?”  I asked.

“That’s my personal aide,” Dad replied as I looked at him closely.

“Dad, is he your boyfriend?”  I asked as his facial expression changed.  “Well, I’m only asking Dad.  If he’s your boyfriend, it won’t offend me or anything.”

“He’s not my boyfriend, he’s just my servant,” Dad said as the young man returned and handed him a cup.

“Will there be anything else you’ll need sir?”  The young man asked as Dad shook his head as the young man bowed his head and then walked over to a chair out in the yard and then sat down.

“See son, he’s just a servant,” Dad said as I shrugged my shoulders and then walked towards the area where the kids were playing as Dad followed behind.

Sometime Later

“Daddy, are we going to see the fireworks?”  Caleb asked as he climbed into JT’s lap.

“We’re going to watch them out here,” JT replied as he took a sip of his drink.

“We can see them from here Daddy?”  Caleb asked as JT nodded his head.  “Can Grandpa watch too?”

“Yes, I’m sure he can,” JT responded as he looked up to see an unwanted guest.  “Caleb, I need you to sit right here, I’ll be right back.”

“Okay Daddy,” Caleb replied as JT walked towards the unwanted guest as Justin and Joshua Charles noticed also.

“Baby, let me handle this,” Justin stated as JT shook his head.

“Nope, you can’t handle this one like I can,” JT stated as he got to Chris Keller and then grabbed him by the collar of his shirt, jacking him up off of his feet.  “What in the hell are you doing here man?”

“Get your hands off of me!”  Chris yelled as he struggled to get out of JT’s grasp.

“No, what in the hell is your scrawny, no-good, stupid, racist ass doing here on my property?”  JT asked.

“I wasn’t here bothering you,” Chris stated as he slid out of his shirt, getting away from JT’s grasp as JT threw the shirt down on the ground.

“You being here on my property is bothering me,” JT stated as he made a move to grab Chris again as Justin stepped in front of him, blocking him from getting to Chris again.

“Baby, stop this,” Justin said as Chris glared at him.  “There’s no point of you getting into trouble today, over this piece of crap.”

“Excuse me!”  Chris snapped as JT looked at him, ready to grab him again as Joshua moved around Justin and then grabbed Chris around the neck, getting him into a headlock.  “Let me fucking go!”

“Why did you come here Chris?  We don’t need you causing any of your kind of trouble,” Joshua stated as he held Chris tightly as the man struggled to get free as JT and Justin snickered.

“I always knew he was good for something else, besides telling other people who I’m sleeping around with,” JT stated as Joshua glared at him.

“Baby, don’t start,” Justin said as he turned his attention back to Joshua and Chris.  “As for you Chris, you’re not welcomed here or anywhere around us.  After all the stupid and racial things you’ve done to us, do you really think any of us would want you around?  Come on, really man?  You need to leave and if you don’t want to leave of your own free will, I don’t’ mind calling the police to have you taken away.”

“You would actually have the police take me away, wouldn’t you, you fucking race traitor,” Chris stated as he pushed Joshua away from him.  “I don’t know what happened to you two.  It was always you two that turned your backs on your own race.  You two always chose the niggers over your own kind.  Do you really think you’ll have a good life with those fucking porch monkeys?”

“This muthafucka just cruising for a damn ass whooping,” JT said as he shook his head.  “He actually on my damn property, talking this shit, like he got it like that.  Aw hell naw playa, you ain’t got it like that!”

“Baby please,” Justin said as JT shook his head.

“You two are so damn weak.  You married one and you actually bred with them, having a damn zebra in the process!”  Chris snapped as he pointed his finger at Joshua.  “You two are so disgusting.”

“No, you’re the disgusting one here,” Justin stated as he shook his head.  “I can’t believe we were actually ever friends with you.”

“No, I can’t believe I was ever friends with the likes of you two race traitors,” Chris stated as he pointed his finger in Justin’s face.  “You could’ve done so much better than this nigger here.”

“Somebody better get him before I get up in that ass!”  JT snapped as Joey and Lance walked over to see what was going on.

“Good Lord, what in the world is going on here?”  Joey asked.

“If he’s here, it can’t be good,” Lance said as he shook his head and then sighed.

“And here we have the so-called nigger loving committee,” Chris said as Lance rolled his eyes.

“He’s still on that kick I see,” Lance said as he waved his hand and then turned around.  “I’m not getting in the middle of this mess.  Someone needs to call the police and have his ass arrested.  That would save a whole lot of time and trouble.”

“No, I’m going to kick his ass and then the police can arrest him,” JT said as he moved around Justin as he grabbed Chris again as James, Wes and Todd rushed over and grabbed him, holding him back.

“Son, what’s going on here?”  James asked, looking at JT and then at Justin.  “Justin?”

“This is Chris, Chris here has a problem with black people,” Justin replied as he shook his head.  “You know what, I’m done with this madness.”

“Too bad, the police are here,” Nikki spoke as she walked up behind JT and Justin.  “When I saw you guys over here, I went ahead and called the police.  I knew something had to be going on.”

“Just more drama the media is going to twist and turn against us,” JT stated as he shook his head.  “Since the police are here, they can get this trash out of here and we can get back to the party.”

“I’m glad to hear you say that,” Justin said as he pulled JT close and then kissed his mouth as Chris’ eyes widened as he looked down.  “Come on baby, let’s get back to our little boy.”

“Sounds like the perfect idea,” JT stated as he popped Chris in the back of his head and then walked off.

“You fucking…” Chris said as Joshua punched him in the face, knocking him down to the ground.

“Josh,” Nikki said as she shook her head.  “Let the police handle that fool.”

“Fine, come on babe,” Joshua said as he took Nikki’s hand as the two of them walked away.

“You’re a very lucky young man,” James stated as he smiled weakly and then walked off as a police officer walked over to Chris and started reading him his rights as another officer walked over and handcuffed him.

A Few Minutes Previously – The Parking Area

“Hi Howard, are you alright?”  Wes asked as he walked over to where Howard sat in his car, tears streaming down his face.

“Yeah—yes, I’m okay,” Howard replied as he sniffled and then wiped at his eyes.

“If you’re alright, why are you sitting in your car, crying man?”  Wes asked.

“Is—is Chad here?”  Howard asked as Wes shrugged his shoulders.  “Wasn’t he supposed to be here tonight?”

“I haven’t heard from Chad since the last time he was here,” Wes stated with a frown.  “If you want to find out some information about Chad, you’ll have to ask JT.”

“I—I don’t want to ask JT, I don’t want him to think…” Howard trailed off as Wes smiled.

“That you’re in love with Chad,” Wes stated as he lifted Howard’s chin, so he could see his face.  “Why are you out here crying man?”

“I—I haven’t heard from Chad in a few days,” Howard replied with a frown on his face.  “The last time I spoke with him, he said he would be on location for one of the shows he was working on, but he would try to make it out here for the holiday and the party.  I was so hoping to see him.”

“As I said, you would have to ask JT if you want to know something about Chad,” Wes stated as Howard sniffled again and then got out of the car, closed the door and then pressed a button to lock the doors and arm the alarm.  “Besides, there’s a party going on around the house, you should be having a good time, not sitting out here, worrying about a man.”

“I guess you’re right,” Howard stated as he wiped at his eyes again and then smiled as he and Wes walked around the house, heading to the backyard.  “No point in being upset about him not being able to be here if he had to work.  I can’t expect him to pick me over his career.”

“Don’t talk like that man,” Wes stated as he and Howard walked over to a table and got something to drink.

“Well I don’t know what I was thinking, we just started dating and…” Howard stated as Wes held up a hand, stopping him from talking more.

“Man, chill with that and have a good time,” Wes stated as some fireworks lit up the night sky as he took a sip of his drink.  “You are here with friends, have a good time…”

“Well I’m sure he’ll have a better time with his boyfriend,” Chad’s voice was heard as he stepped up behind the two men, scaring Howard a bit as he turned around quickly as Chad slid his arms around his waist, pulling him close and hugging him as Wes stepped back and watched as the two men kissed.

“Well look at that,” Wes said as he smiled and then shook his head.  “You two have a good time.  I’m going to find my own man.”

“Hey handsome,” Chad said as he and Howard kissed again.  “Did you miss me?”

“Yes, I missed you very much,” Howard answered as the two of them kissed again.

“I think I missed you more than you missed me,” Chad stated as he kissed Howard’s lips quickly as he dropped down to one knee.  “I think I need to rectify that problem of us missing each other.”

“Oh my God Chad, what are you doing?”  Howard asked as a few people had gathered around them.

“Babe, I know we haven’t been dating long, but I think we both feel the same way about things,” Chad stated with a smile as he looked up at Howard as he pulled a small velvet box from his pocket and then held it up to Howard.  “Howard, would you do me the greatest honor and become my husband?”

“I… Yes Chad, yes I’ll marry you!”  Howard squealed as Chad hopped up and then pulled Howard into a hug as the two of them kissed as the people around clapped.

“Congratulations you two,” JT spoke as he and Justin walked over to where Chad and Howard were.  “Thanks a lot for changing my Fourth of July party into a marriage proposal man.”

“You’re welcome,” Chad replied as he and JT hugged.  “I’m so happy right now.”

“I’m happy for you,” JT stated, kissing Chad’s cheek as Todd frowned and then walked away as Wes looked at him strangely and then shrugged his shoulders.

A Little Later – The Entertainment Room

“What’s on your mind baby?”  Justin asked as he walked into the room to see JT, sitting by himself.  “Is there something wrong?”

“Yes and no,” JT replied as he looked up at Justin and then sighed.

“Want to talk about it?”  Justin asked, walking over and sitting next to JT as he took his hand.

“Today was a good day, well until your friend came and crashed the party,” JT stated as he shook his head.  “I’ve had enough of people crashing parties around here.”

“Baby, I’m sorry for Chris and…” Justin said as JT shook his head.

“It wasn’t just Chris,” JT stated as he sighed again.  “Glitter, Starletta and that fool Darren.”

“I don’t remember seeing him here,” Justin said as JT shook his head.

“I redirected him back to his car, before he could stay long enough to cause any problems,” JT stated with a frown as he shook his head.  “He actually started talking shit in the parking area.”

“About what baby?”  Justin asked, looking JT in the face.

“He wasn’t happy about what I had done,” JT said as he stood up.  “He didn’t like that I released my singles without the company’s say-so.”

“What else did he say?”  Justin asked as JT walked over to the sound system in the room, pressing a button as some music started.

“He said that if I did something else without the record company’s approval, I would be gone,” JT said as he turned around with a smile on his face.

“And, what did you do?”  Justin asked.

“I directed him off of my property nicely and I returned to the party,” JT stated as he turned back around.  “Dad overheard the conversation and asked me did I need any help.”

“And,” Justin said.

“Pretty soon, I don’t think I’ll have to worry about the record company anymore,” JT stated as he leaned against the wall as Justin got up and walked over to him.

“Meaning what baby?”  Justin asked.

“Let’s just say, before the end of this week, I’ll own the record company,” JT stated as he leaned in and kissed Justin’s mouth.  “With that said, I feel like celebrating.  Let’s go to bed baby.”

“That’s totally fine with me,” Justin said as he and JT kissed again and then left the room.

To Be Continued…

If I Ain’t Got You – Chapter 21

Chapter 21 — New Additions and Ultimatums

Jan 4, 2003 – Orlando, FL – The Poole-Walden Estates

“Come on baby, do you forgive me?”  Mark asked, holding JT in his arms as they stood in the doorway.

“Yeah, I guess so,” JT replied as he looked into Mark’s eyes.

“You guess so?  You guess so?  What kind of answer is that baby?”  Mark asked, looking down.

“It’s the only one you’re getting from me right now,” JT replied, kissing Mark on the cheek and then pulling away from him.

“Fine, I’ll get a better answer out of you later on tonight,” Mark said as he crossed his arms across his chest. “So, when will Justin, Nick, Dean and Angie start moving in?”

“Well, Nick is already moved in.  Justin is partially moved in,” JT replied as Mark looked at him strangely.

“He’s partially moved in,” Mark said as JT nodded his head.

“A few of his doctors aren’t on the same page as me yet,” JT stated with a frown.  “I’m trying to get them all to see the big picture through Justin’s eyes, but some of them are concentrating on his medical issues first and not on his privacy and freedom from the hospital.”

“I see,” Mark said as he shook his head.  “Is someone trying to keep the hospital’s profit margin up or is there something else at play there?”

“It’s a bit of profit, his health and the fame of things with him,” JT stated as he sighed.  “He may not be a big-name celebrity in the whole entire world, but he is a singer around this town, same as Nick and since they’ve been at the hospital, tons of fans have been camped out in the lobby.  The hospital has gotten tons of news coverage because of those two and the board likes it.”

“Well I’m glad you got their back, so you can see the big picture of things,” Mark said as he pulled JT to him and kissed his lips.  “What about Angie and—and Dean?”

“Angie has the movers putting most of her things into storage.  She’s going to stay here tonight and finish up with some things at her apartment tomorrow.  She’s taking the room down the hall that she normally sleeps in when she stays over.  Dean will be across from her and he’ll start moving in around Tuesday, maybe Wednesday.  He said he has to see his lawyer about some things, so he’ll keep me informed of things,” JT explained as he sighed.

“This place will be operating like a hotel sooner or later,” Mark said, laughing.

“That’s what I said earlier,” JT stated as he kissed Mark’s mouth.  “Before I left the hospital, I checked on Kai.  He’s ready to come home, but Andy wants him to stay a bit longer.”

“I bet he misses his room,” Mark said as JT shook his head.

“He wants to move up to the attic,” JT stated as Mark looked at him strangely.  “Should we let him?”

“If that’s what he wants, why shouldn’t we?  He’s almost fifteen and he would probably want to be far away from our room as possible,” Mark said, laughing again.

“He’ll be all the way up there, away from us,” JT said, hugging Mark as he looked down.  “Way up there in the attic, doing only God knows what.”

“Baby, it’s not like we don’t know how to go up there,” Mark said as he rubbed JT’s back and then slid his hand down into the back of JT’s pants.

“Hey now, you’re being naughty,” JT said, kissing Mark’s mouth again.

“Yeah I am, but you bring out the naughty in me.  Let’s go get our freak on, before everyone comes back,” Mark slyly said.

“No baby, we can’t do that, we don’t have the time,” JT said, pulling away from Mark.

“Hell, all I need is fifteen minutes.  Shit, all I really need is a good five,” Mark said, kissing JT’s cheek.

“Excuse me, I’m not going to just go jump into bed and rush things along for you,” JT said with a frown.

“Come on baby, it won’t take that long.  We’ll be done before anyone comes back,” Mark whined, trying to kiss JT’s mouth.

“Down boy,” JT said, turning Mark’s face away from his.  “I think you need to go take a cold shower or something.”

“But baby,” Mark whined.

“That’s what you want, but you’re not going to get it right now,” JT stated, shaking his head.

“Fine, why don’t you just fuck me then; I need some form of sex baby.  I need you, I need you in any way I can get you,” Mark said, his eyes pleading with JT as JT shook his head.

“No baby, just wait until later on.  I promise you, I’ll make it worth your while later on.  You’ll love that so much better,” JT said as he walked down the hall to his home office.

Florida Hospital – The Emergency Room’s Nurses Station

Angela’s POV

I can’t believe I’ve been here an extra hour.  I should’ve been gone an hour ago.  I bet JT and Mark are probably wondering where I am and why I’m not at their place.  I need to get my stuff and get the hell out of here before something else happens and I end up staying another hour.  The sooner I get out of here, the better things will be.  I’m going to say my goodbyes and get the hell on.

“I’ll see you tomorrow girl,” I said as Tamara walked passed me, heading for the exit doors.

I busied myself, finishing up my notes and then gathered the rest of my things so I could head over to JT’s house, doing my best not to be spotted by any other doctors or possibly patients that need my help.

“Where in the hell did I put those stupid keys?  Damn, I must’ve left them in the locker,” I said, shaking my head and then sighing.

Rushing back to the staff locker room, I heard my phone ringing.  I dreaded answering it, especially after last night.  Kevin has been blowing my cell up, trying to apologize for what happened, but I don’t want to hear anything he has to say.  I looked at the caller ID, not recognizing the number, I decided to answer the phone.  I flipped it open as I rummaged around in my purse, trying to find my locker key.

“Hello?”  I said, pulling out the key and opening my locker so I could change out of my scrubs.

“Angie, please don’t hang up,” I heard Kevin’s voice say quickly, trying to buy himself some time before the dial tone greeted his ass.  “Baby, I just want to talk to you.  Please don’t hang up on me.”

“Don’t call me Angie!  You no longer have the right to call me that.  I thought I told you to lose my number!  What the hell do you want from me?”  I asked in exasperation, not needing that kind of stress right now on top of everything else going on in my life.

“I—I just want to see you, so that I can apologize for what happened last night,” he replied quietly, so quietly in fact, I had a hard time hearing him.  “Angela, I really care about you.  I know that I fucked up, but please don’t let this kill us before ‘us’ has a chance to grow.”

“There is no ‘us’ Kevin, I told you that already.  I meant what I said when I last saw you!  Any ‘us’ that might’ve been, died last night when you called me by his damn name!  Now please, if you really care about me, leave me the hell alone,” I said, hanging up the phone before I started crying.

Damn him!  Why can’t he just leave me alone?  I already have too much on my plate as it is to deal with.  First, my baby Kai gets hurt and then Valgina fucking Williams comes back to make life a living hell.  To top things off, JT gets fired and that damn bitch is named his replacement!  I don’t know how much more of this I can take, before I have either a nervous breakdown or I catch a damn court case.

As I finished changing into my clothes, I grabbed the last of my stuff out of the locker so I could head out.  Stopping by the time clock, I made sure that all the nurses under my supervision remembered to clock out before I headed for the door.  Since I decided that it would be a good thing to move in with JT and Mark, I have a lot to do at home, so I hurried to my car, stopping dead in my tracks before I could get there.

Sitting on the hood of the car was a vase of at least a dozen perfect long-stemmed yellow roses, anchoring a clutch of helium balloons that said, ‘I’m Sorry’ on one side and ‘Please Forgive Me’ on the other.  I got close and could see that there are also a dozen teddy bears sitting on the hood of the car, each holding a pink rose and a card that read, ‘Please Forgive Me’.

I gasped in surprise; tears sprang to my eyes as I got closer.  I touched the roses gently, almost afraid that they might break.  I can feel my heart melting and I knew that Kevin was behind all of this.  I turned around to put my purse on the roof of the car so that I could find my cell, but just as I’m about to dial his number, my phone rang.

“Kevin?”  I said breathlessly, hoping that he had forgotten that I told him never to call me again.

“I take it you found my apology,” Kevin replied softly.

“Yes… It’s beautiful.  Thank you,” I managed to say before I started crying softly.  “Where are you?”

“Somewhere close by.  I didn’t want to come around, unless you said it was okay,” he replied.

“I need—to apologize—to you,” I spoke before I felt hands on mine, moving the phone away from my ear as I turned around to see him standing there.

“Don’t cry sweet girl,” he softly said as he wrapped his arms around me as I buried my face in his shoulder, holding onto him.

“I’m sorry that I slapped you last night Kevin.  It just hurt me so much when I gave myself to you and you called me by his name,” I finally told him as I cried, holding onto him.  His arms tightened around me, holding me closer to him.

“Baby, you have nothing to apologize for.  I’m the one who screwed up.  I wish that I could go back and erase the pain, but I can’t.  All I can do is say that I’m sorry for hurting you that way.  You’re so much better than I deserve and…” he stated as I cut him off.

“No!  You deserve me… And I deserve you,” I softly said.  “I just need to be a little more willing to forgive you when you make mistakes.  I’m so sorry for hitting you.”

“Hey, that’s in the past, remember?  Can we put last night behind us and concentrate on getting back to where we were?”  He asked as he smiled down at me.

“I think I’d like that,” I replied, kissing him gently.  “Would you like to be my date tonight?”

“Where are we going sweet girl?”  Kevin asked, kissing me as we began moving my gifts from the hood to the back seat of my car.

“We’re going to a barbecue at JT and Mark’s house,” I replied as I stole a quick kiss before I got behind the wheel and started the car.  “Oh and another thing.”

“Yes sweet girl,” Kevin said, looking at me closely.

“If you ever call me by another person’s name while we’re making love again, I will rip your head off and shove it someplace really painful.  Capeesh?”  I said as he nodded his head.

“Capeesh!”  He replied, laughing as I pulled out of the lot as he rested one hand on my thigh as I drove to JT’s house to share a special night with him and the new friends.

Late Evening – The Poole-Walden Estates – The Backyard

“Where’s everybody?”  JT asked, looking around the backyard.  “This is supposed to be a get-together and it seems no one is here.”

“Angie called and said she and Kevin are on their way and Nick and Justin are busy in their room,” Mark replied with a smile as he winked his eye as JT looked at him strangely.

“They’re busy?”  JT said as he looked down and then back at Mark.

“Yeah, I said they are busy as in they are gettin’ busy,” Mark said with a smirk.

“They’re having sex?”  JT asked with a surprised expression on his face.

“Yeah baby and from the sounds of it, Justin is doing a good job of taking care of business,” Mark said as JT slapped his arm playfully.

“That isn’t your business baby, you’re a big perv, you know that,” JT said, shaking his head.

“It’s not my fault, it’s theirs.  No one told them to leave the door cracked,” Mark said as he ducked another of JT’s slaps.

“Shut up you perv,” JT said, walking out into the backyard.  “Come on you big baby.”

“Where are we going?”  Mark asked, looking around the yard.

“We’re going to the pool house, so we can take a dip,” JT said as he winked at Mark as Mark looked at him strangely as realization hit as he took off running towards the pool house.

“Hot damn, I’m gonna get some,” Mark said, stopping at the pool house door as he waited on JT to get there.

“You could’ve at least waited for me,” JT said, pushing Mark up against the wall as he kissed his mouth passionately while groping at his crotch.  “One of these days you’ll stop and think about what it is that you’re doing.”

“I’m sorry baby,” Mark said as he hefted JT up on his shoulders and walked into the pool house as he closed the door behind them.

A Few Minutes Previously – Justin and Nick’s Bedroom

“How are you feeling baby?” Nick asked, kissing Justin’s cheek.

“I feel fine,” Justin replied, pulling Nick closer.  “I’m starting to like it here already.  I wonder how long JT’s going to let us stay here with him.”

“I don’t know, but our best guess is that we better keep an eye out for a place of our own, just in case,” Nick replied as he looked down.

“Do you think he’ll throw us out?”  Justin asked, looking at Nick with concern written all over his face.

“I don’t know baby.  We don’t really know him like that.  We just know that he’s our therapist and I think he only took us in because of our celebrity status,” Nick said as he looked down.

“I don’t think that’s the case baby.  I don’t think he’s concerned about any of that.  I think he genuinely likes the two of us.  Besides, his husband is known around town and is famous.  I don’t think him knowing the two of us would make a difference,” Justin stated as he kissed Nick on the cheek.  “Just forget about all that stuff and we’ll take things one day at a time.”

“Are you sure about that Justin?”  Nick asked, lying his head on Justin’s chest.

“Yeah, I’m sure, sure as the sky is blue and the fact that I love you Nick Canton,” Justin said as he rubbed Nick’s back.

“I love you too baby and that’s Nick Canton dash Tanner,” Nick said as he kissed the tip of Justin’s nose.

“We’re not married yet, but okay baby,” Justin said as he laughed.

“We’ll be married soon, I hope,” Nick said as his cell phone rang.  Sighing, he pressed a button to answer it, turning on the phone’s speaker.  “Hello, talk to me.”

“Nick, where are you?”  Nick’s brother Aaron’s voice rattled out through the speaker.

“I’m at my and Justin’s new home,” Nick replied.

“You’re at your new home?  Where’s that?  I wasn’t aware that you two had bought a place,” Aaron said as Justin giggled.

“We’re at JT’s place, you know JT Poole, the therapist,” Nick stated.

“You mean Mr. Poole, as in that Kasai guy’s father?”  Aaron asked.

“Yep, one in the same,” Nick replied.

“Cool, can I come over?”  Aaron asked.

“Yeah, I called you earlier and left the address on your voicemail.  There’s going to be a barbecue, so bring something to contribute,” Nick said as Justin shook his head.

“What should I bring?”  Aaron asked.

“Does it really matter?  It’s a cookout, think of something that you would want to eat at a cookout,” Justin said as he giggled again.

“Yeah, what he said.  I’m in the middle of something bro, I gotto go,” Nick said as he smiled at Justin and then closed the phone.

“You didn’t have to hang up on him baby,” Justin said, shaking his head again.

“Oh yes I did baby.  It seems your dick is ready for more action and I wasn’t expecting it,” Nick said as he moved into a sitting position atop Justin’s hips.  “Are you ready to go again?”

“Hell yeah,” Justin replied, holding onto Nick’s hips as he moved him up and down on his dick.

Later On – Upstairs – Angela’s Bedroom

Angela’s POV

“So, this is going to be my new home.  Well, at least until JT and Mark either drive me crazy or kick me out,” I said, gathering hangers as I walked over to the closet and slid the door open as I hung up clothes as I talked.  “Kevin, could you hand me those pantsuits please?”

“Sure baby,” Kevin replied, bringing me the pile of clothes as he kissed my shoulder.  “So, will I be allowed to come over for conjugal visits or not?”

“Conjugal visits?  You make it sound like I just entered prison or something silly,” I replied, laughing so hard I had to sit down next to him on the bed.  “JT and Mark said that it’s perfectly okay for me to have company as long as we keep it down to a low roar.  Damn, it’s going to feel weird living with him and Mark right down the hall.”

“Well at least you have your own room and plenty of privacy,” he said, kissing my shoulder again as he got up to open another suitcase.  He stared down at the contents wide eyed as I wondered what he was looking at.  “What’s this?”

“Wait, don’t look in that one!”  I yelled, ducking around him, trying to grab the small case.  Kevin moved the case out of my reach, blocking me from taking it away from him.  I sighed in frustration, blushing furiously as Kevin picked up piece after piece of lacey silk lingerie, inspecting each carefully.

“Well… You never told me that you had such good taste in lingerie Angela,” he said in a very sexy whisper, coming close and touching my face.  “Can I see you in some of it sometime?”

“Sure you can, but only if you’re a good boy and you finish helping me unpack all of my stuff,” I replied with a grin as I took the bag with the lingerie over to the dresser to be put away.  I carefully refolded the pieces, putting them away as he eyed me closely.  “Well I’m done for now.  How about we go downstairs to join the others?”

“How about you give me that show right now?  Screw the others,” he replied, wrapping me in his arms as he kissed my mouth passionately.  I melted into him, sighing softly when the kiss ended.  “So, can I have that show now?”

“Party now, show later, you horn dog,” I retorted as I pulled him down for one more lingering kiss before letting him go.  I turned to walk away from him, stopping when he wrapped his arms around me, pulling me close to his body again.  I grinned, reaching back to put my arms around him as we walked out the door together.

Out in the Pool House

JT’s POV

I must admit that I was really pissed off with Mark, mainly because of his constant temper tantrums.  It’s like damn, he acts like every guy I see, I’m going to leave him and go jump into bed with them.  Lord, I hope this jealousy of his goes away soon, if not, I don’t think I can continue putting up with it or him.

“Baby, what are you thinking about?”  Mark asked, smiling at me.

“You and those terrible jealousy fits you keep having,” I replied as he frowned and then looked down.  “Why are you so jealous all of a sudden Mark?”

“I’m scared you’ll stop loving me and leave me for someone else,” he replied, looking at the wall on the opposite side of the room.

“What gave you that notion Mark?”  I asked.

“It seems, for some strange reason, that all the people you’ve dated in the past or have been in a long-term relationship with, have resurfaced,” he said as I wrapped my arms around him, pulling him closer to me.

“So, what if Dean’s come back into my life, he’s only in it as a friend and that’s it.  I love you, you’re my husband Mark, not him,” I said, trying to reassure him that it was him I loved.

“What about that other guy?”  He asked, looking into my eyes as I wondered who he was talking about.

“You know, the guy that came by the hospital with the flowers and stuff, about two weeks ago,” he said, turning away from me again.

“Turn back around here mister,” I said, pulling him back to me.  “Mark, don’t do this to us.  I love you and only you.  There’s no other man that I love, well besides Kai, but you know what I mean.”

“Who was that guy baby?  Don’t be trying to change the subject,” he said, sitting up.  “Who was tht guy that brought the flowers and kissed you on the cheek?”

“His name is Ste… Ste Henderson,” I replied with a frown.

“So, what’s the deal with him then?”  He asked, the sadness hanging on his words like a moth to a flame.

“We dated in college, but that’s it,” I said, knowing he wasn’t going to accept that.  “He lives in London and each time he comes to America, he stops by to visit me, besides he’s married.”

“He’s married?  Why is he bringing you flowers and kissing you on the cheek?”  He asked as I sighed.  “He shouldn’t be doing those things for you.  He should be doing those things to the person he’s married to.”

“I’ve known him a long time Mark, we’re just friends, nothing more than that,” I said, getting pissed off with him.  “He’s been married for the last decade and has three beautiful kids.  Why would he jeopardize that life, trying to start something with me?”

“I don’t know, he may have a death wish or something,” he replied as I shook my head.

“You’re really pissing me off and you might not like the outcome if you keep this crap up,” I said, pointing my finger at him.

“What you trying to say baby?”  He asked, jumping up from the hammock.

“I’m simply saying that if you don’t stop with all this jealousy crap, I—I’ll divorce you.  I’m tired of all of this Mark.  Either you love and trust me or you don’t, it’s really that simple.  So, which is it?”  I asked, getting up as I walked over to him.

“You would actually divorce me?”  He asked as I could see the tears forming in his eyes.

“If I have to keep putting up with this crap, I’ll divorce you.  I love you Mark, but I won’t put up with the constant arguments about you suspecting me of sleeping with other men.  If you love me like you say you do, then you’ll stop this crap and show me that love, instead of wasting both of our time with those fucking accusations,” I told him, grabbing my clothes as I walked outside, not knowing that our guests were around.

“Well hello there big daddy,” I heard someone say as I turned around to see Marshall and Jamie standing there with their mouths gaping open.

“You might want to close your mouths, the flies might find a home in there,” I said as the two men realized they were staring.

“Baby, please don’t leave…” Mark said, realizing that we had guests too as he went red in the face, shoulders and his butt cheeks too.

“Well damn, look at that, he even blushes on his ass,” Chris Kilmartin said, walking up to Jamie and Marshall.

“I think your Irish pride is showing baby,” I said, laughing as he covered his crotch and then ran back into the pool house.  “We’ll be back in a few minutes.”

Florida Hospital – Kasai’s Hospital Room

“Hi there,” Aaron said, peeking his head into Kasai’s room.

“Hi,” Kasai replied, waving at Aaron as he came into the room.

“How are you feeling?  I told you I would come back to check on you,” Aaron said, smiling weakly.

“That you did.  What’s going on guy?”  Kasai asked, half-smiling.

“Nothing really.  I’m getting ready to head to your place.  It seems your dads are having a barbecue and I was invited,” Aaron informed him.

“Yeah, the famous barbecue.  Wish I wasn’t here,” Kasai said with a frown on his face.

“Why are you here, if you don’t mind me asking?”  Aaron asked.

“I got beat up by some guys and—and they hurt me pretty bad,” Kasai replied as he pressed the button on the bed to move the back up.

“Oh damn, I hope those creeps are in jail for doing that,” Aaron said as he looked down.

“From what I heard, one of them is and the cops can’t really find the others,” Kasai replied as he twisted around a bit in bed.

“I’m sorry,” Aaron stated as he looked down.

“Sorry for what?”  Kasai asked, looking over at Aaron, trying not to stare.

“I’m sorry that the cops haven’t caught the other creeps that hurt you,” Aaron stated as he weakly smiled again.

“Well it’s not your fault man,” Kasai said, keeping his eyes on Aaron, hoping the boy hadn’t noticed.

Aaron’s POV

Oh man, is this a dream or what?  I’m actually sitting here, in the room with Mr. Poole’s son and I can’t help but to stare at his beauty.  This guy’s a prime-time hottie.  I’ve been here for a while now and every now and then, I look up to see him watching me.  This guy is giving me a hard on and I don’t know if he’s gay or not.  I got to do something to find out if he is or not.  I just can’t take my eyes off of him.  Damn, just sitting here, watching him, talking him, I keep hearing that old song about not being able to take my eyes off someone, playing in my mind.  Whoever it was that sang that song, they knew what they were talking about.

“So, what do you like to do—do for fun?”  I asked, moving the chair closer to him as I could see him tensing up a bit.

“I—I like listening to music, playing computer games and stuff,” he replied, looking at me and then back down at the bed.  “How—how about you?”

“When I’m not on stage acting or performing a song like my brother, I get into about the same things.  So, who’s your favorite band or artist?”  I asked.

“Well I can’t choose just one, I have so many,” he replied.  “But I can stay that I do have a liking for the Rat Kids and Trashcan Man.”

“Cool, I’ve heard some of both bands’ music.  Isn’t Trashcan Man the band that guy arrested for running naked through the crowd at one of their concerts?”  I asked as he smiled and then giggled.

“Yeah, that’s them.  I like the lead singer of the band, he’s so hot,” he said and then blushed.  “I just love me some Ronnie Ray Days.”

“That name sounds so familiar,” I said, scratching the side of my head.  “Dang, he must be really hot, for you to be blushing like that.  Honestly, I can’t remember what the guy looks like, but I can say that I really like Nick Thawley of the Rat Kids, he’s a real hottie.”

“Not as much as Jess Lowe,” he said as I shook my head.

“No, Nick is the better.  I would…” I said, then caught myself, noticing how he watched me.

“Go on, what would you do?”  He asked.

“I would do very naughty things to him,” I replied, shaking my head.

“What kind of naughty things?”  He asked, looking at me strangely.

“Things that would probably put Ms. Skeeza of the Skeezas to shame,” I said, laughing as he laughed too.

“Okay, in the concept of their last video, would you be a naughty girl?”  He asked, sitting up in bed as he turned towards me as he pulled the sheet over his exposed legs as I caught a glimpse of the bruises there.

“For the right person,” I answered, smiling now that I knew that he caught on that I’m gay.

“Cool, I can be a naughty girl at times too, but I would rather be nice first,” he said as I got up, leaned in close to him and then kissed his lips gently.

To Be Continued…

If I Ain’t Got You – Chapter 20

Chapter 20 — A New Beginning for Jusitn and Nick

Jan 4, 2003 – Orlando, FL – Florida Hospital – Kasai’s Hospital Room

“Hi there,” Aaron Canton spoke, walking into the room.

“Hi,” Kasai replied, pulling the sheet up to cover his exposed chest.

“I wasn’t trying to disturb you, but I was looking for your dad,” Aaron said.

“Which one,” Kasai said, looking at Aaron.

“Oh?  Yeah, that’s right, you have two of them.  Will you please forgive my ignorance today; I’m kinda slow right now.  I’m looking for Mr. Poole, is he here by any chance?”  Aaron asked.

“No, Daddy hasn’t been down here yet,” Kasai replied, sitting up in bed.  “Have you tried his office on the second floor?”

“Yes, I went there, but no one was there.  I assumed he would be here with you, but I guess I was wrong again,” Aaron said with a frown on his face.  “I’m sorry for bothering you.”

“It was no bother.  It’s always good to have company around here,” Kasai said with a smile.

“Well cool.  If I have the time, I’ll drop back by here later on to see what’s poppin’,” Aaron said, waving at Kasai as he walked out of the room.

“Damn, he’s hot.  I wonder what I have to do to get his digits,” Kasai said as Mark walked into the room.  “Hi Daddy Mark, where’s Daddy?”

Mark’s POV

I thought JT was here, but I guess he isn’t.  Where could he be right now?  He’s not up in his office and he’s not here.  I guess he’s somewhere else in the hospital.  Maybe I should’ve checked the gym before coming here.

“I have no idea kiddo, I thought he was here with you,” I replied, sitting down on the bed, leaning in and kissing his forehead.

“Well that guy that just walked out of here is looking for him too,” Kasai replied, pointing at the door.

“That was Aaron Canton, without the make-up and stage lighting.  He’s probably trying to find his brother still,” I said just as my cell phone rang as I pulled it out to see JT’s number flash across the screen.  “Hello baby, where are you?”

“I’m at home, where are you?”  He asked.

“I just got here to the hospital, to check up on Kai,” I said, smiling at him as I rustled his hair.

“Well damn, I guess we just missed each other.  I just got here to the house,” he said as I wondered what he was doing there.

“What are you doing at the house baby?  Aren’t you supposed to be here,” I said, shrugging my shoulders as patted Kai’s leg.

“No, Larry demoted me, so I quit and decided to go home,” he said as I shook my head.

“You quit?  Baby, what all happened?”  I asked.

“He told me that I was demoted and that Val-hootchie was going to be my boss, so I quit,” he responded as I heard him fumbling with something, probably his laptop, since I heard something beeping.

“Damn baby, so what are you going to do now?”  I asked.

“Well, since you’re there at the hospital, I guess I’m going back there, so I can spend the rest of my day with my two favorite men,” he said as I made a funny face at Kai as he giggled.

“Okay honey, I’ll see you when you get here,” I said, making some kissing noises into the phone as Kai turned up his nose.  “I love you.”

“I love you too baby,” he said as I closed the phone.

“You guys are just too mushy for me,” Kai said, laughing as he waved his hand dismissively at me.

“Whatever kid,” I said, grabbing him as I kissed his cheek and started tickling him as he started freaking out.

“Get off me!  Get off me!  Please don’t hurt me!”  He screamed out, pushing me off of him.

“Oh God baby, I would never hurt you,” I said, getting up off the bed quickly as I watched him as he cried.  “I’m sorry baby.”

“No Daddy Mark, I’m sorry.  I just… I just don’t know what to do,” he said, sniffling as he reached out to me as I moved back over to the bed and then sat down as he hugged me.

In JT’s SUV

JT’s POV

As I made my way out of the house, to head back to the hospital, I spotted Dean as he waited out in the yard, I guess for me.  Walking over to him, he told me that he needed to talk about something important, but wanted to discuss it with my husband as well.  Thinking about things, what could he possibly want to talk to me and my husband about.  Telling him I was headed back to the hospital to check on Kai, he asked could he tag along to see Kai and I agreed.

“So, what is it that you need to talk to us about Dean?”  I asked, turning onto Ventura.

“I think I’d rather wait until you were with Mark.  I don’t want him thinking I’m trying to get with you or something.  I still love you JT, but not like I used to love you,” he said, looking out the window.

“What is it Dean?  Why are you here all of a sudden?” I asked, trying to keep my eyes on the road.

“Fine, I guess I can tell you that part.  I got married a while back and now I’m divorced,” he replied as I almost ran off the road when I heard that.

“You got married?  To who?”  I asked.

“I—I married Shannon, you know the girl from my last agent’s office.  We got married last year and well—well she caught me sleeping around with someone else and now we’re divorced,” he told me as I shook my head as he continued to look out the window.

“So, who did you cheat on her with?”  I asked, turning into the hospital’s parking garage.

“Some guy from a movie I was working on.  I fell in love with him JT, but—but he doesn’t even love me.  He doesn’t love me at all.  It was all about the sex for him.  I—I sacrificed the relationship I had with her, for a guy that didn’t love me.  All he saw was a piece of ass to use as he wanted,” he said as the tears streamed down his face.

“I’m sorry Dean, I didn’t know,” I replied as I leaned over and hugged him.  “Everything will be okay, I promise you that.”

“You can’t tell me something like that JT, I’m heartbroken here.  Things will never be the same, ever again,” he said as we got out of the truck.

“Come on, let’s go see Kai,” I told him as we walked into the hospital just as my phone rang.  “Hello?”

“Hello Mr. Poole, Daniel Sylar here,” I heard the voice of one of the hospital board members on the phone as we stepped into the elevator.

“Hello Mr. Sylar, what can I do for you?”  I asked, wondering why he was calling for me, being that I was no longer a hospital employee.

“I was calling to convince you to take your job back,” Mr. Sylar said as I shook my head as the doors opened.

“I’m sorry Mr. Sylar, but I don’t want my job back.  As long as Valgina Williams would be my boss, I wouldn’t want to work for Florida Hospital, ever again,” I declared with a sigh.

“That’s just it Mr. Poole, you were never demoted, Valgina Williams isn’t your boss.  You are still the head of psychiatry services,” Mr. Sylar stated as I looked at the phone strangely as I stopped at Kai’s door, motioning with my head for Dean to go on in.

“But Larry told me,” I said as Mr. Sylar interrupted me.

“First of all Mr. Poole, I don’t care what Larry told you.  You are still the department head of psychiatry services.  As I see things, no paperwork has been processed for your resignation, so you resigning your job never happened,” Mr. Sylar stated as I scratched the top of my head.  “Also, Larry Tanner is no longer employed by the hospital.”

“What do you mean he’s no longer employed by the hospital?”  I asked.

“He’s been terminated, effective immediately.  Please Mr. Poole, please come back to work.  Myself, along with the hospital doesn’t want to lose your expertise around here,” Mr. Sylar said as I contemplated the options.

“So, Larry Tanner and Valgina Williams aren’t going to plague me at Florida Hospital?”  I asked.

“Larry Tanner won’t, but if I need to, I will make sure that Valgina Williams doesn’t cause you any trouble either,” he stated as I smiled.

“I—I guess I’ll come back then,” I said, walking into Kai’s room.

“Good Mr. Poole, I expect to see you in your office at your earliest convenience,” Mr. Sylar said.

“I’m already here in the hospital, I can be in my office in a few minutes,” I said, looking at my watch.

“Great, I’ll see you there in a few minutes,” Mr. Sylar said as the phone connection ended as I closed the phone.

“I wasn’t demoted,” I said with a smile as Mark looked at me strangely and then motioned with his head at Dean.  “I’m still the boss up there.  Yahooo!”

An Hour Later – Florida Hospital – Hospital Cafeteria

“I’m sorry to keep you two waiting,” JT said as he walked into the room and then took a seat next to Mark.  “Okay Dean, what is it that you want to talk to us about?”

“First, would the two of you stop looking at me like that, it’s scaring me.  Damn, I just wanted to ask you two a favor,” Dean said with a frown on his face.

“What kind of favor Dean?”  Mark asked, sliding closer to JT.

“I—I was wondering, wondering ah… I was wondering could… Well, could I move in with you guys?”  Dean asked, his head held down, fixated with some spot in his lap.

“What!?”  JT and Mark said in unison.

“Never mind, I’ll find some other place to live,” Dean said, getting up from the table quickly as he turned around.

“Dean, Dean wait,” JT said as he got up and then grabbed Dean’s hand, stopping him.  “Just sit back down and tell us why you need a place to live.”

“Well I told you about what happened with Shannon,” Dean said with a frown as he looked down at the table again.  “To start, the divorce is now final and I’m homeless.  She didn’t want to play fair at all.  I can understand with all that happened, she was mad, but she didn’t have to do what she did.  To not put her through any trouble, I decided to just settle out of court, but instead of that happening, she got a woman lawyer that was a totally bitch.”

“What happened?”  JT asked.

“Shannon listened to the damn bitch and put the screws to me.  She didn’t want to settle out of court, she wanted to air our dirty laundry for the rest of the world.  We ended up going to court and guess what, we got a female judge.  None of that went well at all.  The bitch gave Shannon my house, both of my cars and a whole lot of other stuff she didn’t deserve to have,” Dean explained as he sighed and then rubbed at his eyes.

“Damn man,” Mark said as he shook his head.

“Well I’m glad the damn judge didn’t mess with the rest of my assets, but I do have to pay Shannon an ass-load of cash on a monthly basis for alimony for the next two years,” Dean stated as he shook his head and then sighed again.  “Right now, I don’t know what to do.”

“Damn, who did you cheat on her with?”  Mark asked as JT elbowed him in the side.

“Does it really matter?”  Dean asked, looking down at the table again.

“Oh man, you didn’t,” Mark said, getting up from the table as he looked at JT with a hurt expression on his face.  “I knew it!  You show your face for one minute and you two are back together again!”

“What?  What in the hell are you talking about?  Dean didn’t sleep with me, if that’s what you’re thinking,” JT said, glaring at Mark.  “Dean, just go ahead and tell him who it was you were caught sleeping with.  I don’t feel like having this argument again.”

“She—she caught me with some guy on a movie I was working on,” Dean replied with a frown.  “Look Mark, I understand how things seem, but me and JT haven’t been together for a very long time and basically, I don’t have the same feelings for him, like I used to.  It’s just a friendship, family type of bond we share, nothing more than that.  It has nothing to do with romance or anything like that.”

“Yeah right,” Mark said as he looked down and then shook his head.

“I thought we went through this already.  If you don’t have enough sense to trust me, then I think it’s time for us to go our own separate ways.  I don’t need the constant temper tantrums, accusations and these so-called fits of jealousy,” JT stated as he grabbed his bag and his crutches and started walking away.

“Baby don’t, I’m sorry.  You know I trust you,” Mark said as he followed behind JT.

“If you trusted me so much, you wouldn’t be so quick to think I would jump into bed with someone else.  The only man I love and sleep with is you and only you Mark.  When are you going to get that through your thick skull?  I married you, not him,” JT said as he punched Mark in the shoulder and then walked away from him with tears in his eyes.

“JT, JT wait!”  Mark called out as he followed JT down the hall, leaving Dean sitting at the table with a confused look on his face.

A Few Hours Later – JT’s Office

“Well hello you two,” JT spoke as Justin wheeled into his office with Nick following behind him.  “Glad to see you.  So, where have you been most of the day Justin?  The nurses and some doctors have been looking for you for a bit.”

“Ah, well…” Justin trailed off, looking down.

“Did you forget about your session this afternoon?”  JT asked.

“I—I’m sorry,” Nick replied with a nervous look on his face.  “I didn’t mean to cause any problems.  I—I took Justin on an outing for a few hours.  I didn’t think it would be a problem.”

“You took him on an outing?  Where did you two go, if you don’t mind me asking?  Did you have fun?”  JT asked, looking at the two men.

“Yeah, it was quite fun and very interesting,” Justin replied with a blush creeping around the corners of his cheeks.

“Well I’m glad you two had some fun.  What can I do for you guys?”  JT asked, leaning against his desk.

“I want to know when can I leave the hospital, for good,” Justin said as he looked up at JT.

“Leave the hospital for good?  What are you asking here Justin?”  JT asked.

“I don’t want to be here JT, I would rather be someplace else without all the—interruptions,” Justin stated with a sigh. “I want to go back to my life, if you know what I mean.”

“Justin, you’ll be cleared to leave here, when your doctors and I believe that you’re ready to go out into the world and actually be able to handle day-to-day living,” JT stated as he walked around his desk and then took a seat, picking up a folder from his desk and opening it.  “Justin, you still have medical issues that haven’t been addressed yet and do you really think you can get around and manage your life daily, without…”

“That’s just it JT, I think I’m ready to do that,” Justin said as he looked down.  “I just need to get out of here to see.”

“Okay, where are you going to go Justin?”  JT asked as he stood up and then walked around his desk, leaning against it when he got back in front of Justin.

“Well ah… Well, I could… Well, we haven’t thought that far along yet,” Justin replied as he looked over at Nick.

“Where were you planning on going?”  JT asked, looking at Justin and then over to Nick.

“We would go to Nick’s hotel,” Justin answered.

“You would go to Nick’s hotel.  Do you think that’s a good idea?”  JT asked, looking at Justin with a concerned look on his face.

“Right now, it’s the best idea I got, if I want to get away from here,” Justin replied with a frown.  “Until I can get into a place of my own, that would be the next best thing.”

“Where would you look for a place of your own Justin?”  JT asked, crossing his arms across his chest as Justin looked at him and then looked down.

“Well, I—I don’t know where to look JT,” Justin stated as he looked down again and then sighed.

“That figures,” JT said as he moved back around his desk again.  “Justin, if you don’t have a place to go, I just can’t up and agree to you leaving here.”

“Why not JT?”  Justin asked in a whiny tone.  “I can’t stay here forever.  Besides, people are starting to circulate rumors around this place and I’m getting scared that some of those might get out to the rest of the world.”

“What kind of rumors are we talking about here Justin?  Nick, do you know what he’s talking about?”  JT asked with a frown.

“I’m talking about the rumors about us being romantically involved,” Justin stated as he moved closer to JT’s desk.

“Ah, those are not rumors Justin,” JT said as he looked at Justin and then shook his head.  “You two are romantically involved.”

“I know that, but that’s nobody’s business but ours and our friends that know about us,” Justin said as he sighed and then shook his head.  “I want to get out of this place, mainly because I don’t have any privacy here and I want to spend every waking moment that I can with the man that will soon be my husband.”

“You want to spend time with the man that will soon be your husband?  Really now,” JT said, blinking twice.

“Yeah, I’m going to be Nick Tanner soon,” Nick said with a smile.

“Well I guess congratulations are in order for you two,” JT said with a smile.  “So, when’s the big day?”

“We—we haven’t decided on a date just yet.  We’re trying to solve one problem at a time,” Nick said with a frown.  “Besides, we have other problems to solve, before we can get married to each other.”

“What problems are those?”  JT asked, looking at Nick with concern.

“I don’t want to talk about any of that, that can be saved for a later time, maybe during a session or something,” Nick said as he looked down.  “Our main concern right now is finding a place to live.  Since you don’t agree with the hotel, do you have any suggestions as to where we can go, that will be suitable for us?”

“Now that I think of it, I do,” JT replied as Justin’s head shot up.  “I have the perfect suggestion.”

“What’s the suggestion JT?”  Justin asked, looking at JT as it looked like he was thinking something over in his head.

“How would you two like to move into my house?”  JT asked, looking between both men.

“Your house?  Really?”  Justin said, looking at JT strangely.  “Are you sure about that JT?”

“Yes, I’m sure Justin.  My house is already wheelchair accessible and all the rooms are equipped for all possible needs for wheelchair bound individuals.  I have two rooms on the main floor that are vacant, that you two could use,” JT stated as Justin and Nick looked at each other.

“We would only need one room,” Nick said with a smile.

“Are you sure?”  JT asked, looking at Justin and then at Nick.

“Yeah, one room is all we’ll need,” Justin and Nick said in unison and then giggled as JT shook his head.

“Ohkay, stereo much, that was just weird,” JT said, laughing.  “If you two want to move in, I’m all for it.  I’m sure Mark wouldn’t mind.  Hell, he better not mind, it’s my house anyway.”

“Well, if it’s going to be a problem, we can look elsewhere JT,” Justin said with a frown.

“Nope, it’s settled,” JT said, giving them the thumbs up.  “Let me go ahead and say this first though, if you live with me, I can no longer be your doctor.  I’ll have to assign other therapists here to your cases.  You two want that?”

“Would it be somebody we can trust?”  Justin asked, looking at JT.

“I’ll be sure to put you in good hands,” JT stated.

“Okay, I guess that’s something we’ll just have to deal with,” Justin said, looking up at Nick.  “You cool with that?”

“Sounds cool to me, if that’s what you want,” Nick replied, leaning in and kissing’s Justin’s cheek.

“Cool, we’re in JT,” Justin said as JT moved back around his desk.

“Nice, let me call everyone.  We’re going to have a barbeque today,” JT stated, picking up the phone on the desk.

“Really, why?”  Nick asked.

“To celebrate the new people moving into the house,” JT replied with a smile.  “We have a hotel running at the Poole-Walden estates.”

“Ah, okay,” Justin said with a giggle.  “You make it sound like there are more people there besides you, your husband and your son.”

“There are more people besides us.  Nurse Sebastian is moving in and a friend of mine is moving in too.  Steve also spends a lot of time around there too,” JT stated as he pressed a button on the phone.  “Hi Angie, pass the word around to the gang that there’s going to be a cookout at the joint.”

“Cool man cool,” Angela’s voice rattled out through the speaker in the room.  “So, your hubby tells me that you’re mad with him.  Is it safe for me to move in?”

“Yes it’s safe for you to move in,” JT said with a smile.  “About damn time that you did girl.”

“Yeah, I know it is.  I’m going to take you guys up on the offer this time.  Hell, it would be nice to be around my baby boy Kai,” Angela said as JT shook his head.

“Oh yeah, I can see you spoiling the boy rotten.  He’s already rotten now,” JT said, laughing as Nick and Justin just looked at each other.  “Oh yeah, before I go, I got a surprise for you.”

“What is it?  Don’t keep me waiting, tell me already,” Angela said.

“Besides you, Nick and Justin are moving in downstairs,” JT said with a smile as he winked at Justin.

“Really?  Great, gets them out of the spotlight of nosey central.  How long are they staying for?”  Angela asked.

“They’ll be staying as long as needed.  I’m in no hurry, it’s all about healing,” JT said as he looked over at Justin and Nick.  “Okay, I have to get things done on my end.  Don’t forget to pass the word, oh and don’t invite Tamara, she’s too damn greedy and I don’t think others enjoyed her slutty demeanor the last time we got together and she was around.”

“Oh alright, I was only trying to give Andy someone to keep him company.  I guess he’ll go at it alone, again,” Angela said as she sighed.

“I’m quite sure Andy can round up his own tail,” JT said as he laughed again.  “I’ll see you at the house later on and bring something.”

“Yeah yeah, I’ll stop by the store on my way to your place, since I’ll be getting off in a few minutes or so,” Angela spoke.

“Okay girl, bye,” JT said as he pressed the button to turn the speakerphone off.

“So, it’s a party.  Can we invite some people?”  Nick asked.

“Sure,” JT replied with a smile.  “But first, you two need to get your stuff and get going to the house.  I’ll get Steve to take you two there so you can pick one of the rooms that you want, while I go talk with a few doctors.”

“Okay cool,” Justin said, smiling.  “JT?”

“Yeah,” JT said, looking over at Justin.

“Come here,” Justin said as he waved JT over to where he was.

“Yes Justin,” JT said as he leaned down to Justin as Justin pulled him down closer and then kissed his cheek and then hugged him.

“Thank you JT, you’re the coolest person I know,” Justin said as Nick hugged JT too.

“You’re welcomed, just doing what I can to enhance the lives of my patients,” JT said with a smile.

To Be Continued…

When The Glitter Turns Gold – Chapter 16


Chapter 16 — Troubles of JT’s World

Jun 21, 2004 – Jacksonville, FL (Baymeadows Suburb) – The Home of JT Poole – Chad’s Guest Bedroom

“Hey there, did you sleep well?”  Chad asked as Howard opened his eyes and then looked up at him.

“Yes, I slept very well in your arms,” Howard replied as he moved in close and then kissed Chad’s lips.  “I’ve enjoyed my time with you very much.”

“I’ve enjoyed mine with you,” Chad stated as the two of them kissed again as the sound of a ringing cell phone in the room interrupted their kiss.

“That’s mine,” Howard stated with a sigh as he fished around through the pockets of his track-pants on the floor as he grabbed his cell phone and then pressed a button to answer it.  “This is Howard Marshall; may I help you?”

“I’m going in there,” Chad whispered as he slid from the bed, leaned in and kissed Howard on the cheek and then headed into the bathroom, closing the door behind him.

Howard’s POV

“Hello Howard, I need a moment of your time,” Ms. McCormick spoke as I wondered what was up, being that she hardly ever called me while I was away from the office.

“Sure Ms. McCormick, but if you don’t mind me asking, what’s going on?”  I asked, waiting for her to go ahead and tell me what was so important that she interrupted my personal time with the man that has captured my heart.

“Are you still working on that case with Mr. Poole?”  She asked as I sighed and then nodded my head, not thinking about the fact that she couldn’t see my reaction.

“Which case are you referring to?”  I asked.

“The case regarding the biological mother of his child,” she stated.

“Yes ma’am, I’m still working on that case with him, but there haven’t been any new developments with the case, unless…” I said, fearing what I was about to hear.

“Apparently, there has been a break in the case,” she replied as I scratched my head, not remembering hearing anything about this when I was in the office on Friday.  “It seems the judge that’s presiding over her criminal case requested a seven-thirty exam…”

“Yes ma’am, I knew that part already,” I said, wondering what was actually going on.  “Did the judge throw the case out, being that there was no actual evidence to convict her?”

“Oh no, the judge actually ruled on the case and it’s against Ms. Stewart,” she stated as I looked at the phone strangely.  “Ms. Stewart has been sentenced already and has been transferred.”

“Come again,” I said, thinking I heard her wrong.

“Ms. Stewart has been sentenced and transferred,” she stated as I’m sure my eyes were bugging out of my head, hearing this news.

“What?  You’re kidding me, right?  She’s been sentenced and transferred already?  What was the sentence?  Where has she been transferred to?”  I asked.

“No Howard, not kidding at all.  The judge ruled that she’s not competent to stand trial in her own defense.  She’s been placed under the control of the department of mental health, until a time when she can effectively answer to her crimes and understand what she’s done.  The judge and the psychiatrist don’t think she’s competent enough to defend herself right now.  Until she’s able to do what the judge wants, she’s been transferred to the care of mental health,” she explained as I shook my head.  “She should be settling into the institution, until a judge sees fit to change the ruling.”

“Oh man,” I said, covering my mouth to keep from screaming out about this news, because I was sure the judge would toss the case out.

“To push things to Mr. Poole’s side more, the judge also terminated her parental rights to the child,” she stated as I looked at the phone.

“Are you serious?”  I asked.

“From the report that I’m reading here, the same report that was faxed to your office, the father, your client, Mr. Poole is the sole parent and guardian to the child.  He can either keep the child or give up his rights to the child,” she stated as I wondered if I should tell that part to JT or not.  “As of Friday, Ms. Stewart was deemed unfit to be a parent and the judge did away with her rights to the child.”

“Can the judge really do that?”  I asked, not thinking that was really possible in this case.

“Yes, it is and the judge listed his reasons for terminating her rights in the brief,” she stated as I scratched at my head again.

“I want to hear those reasons,” I said as she cleared her throat.

“The judge cited that he terminated her parental rights based on multiple statues of the clause for terminating her rights.  The first citing was the fact that the child was conceived as a result of rape.  The judge also cited the clause of long-term mental illness and then added in the fact that her actions would be considered a felony conviction.  So, being that she hasn’t been convicted of the actual charges against her, but when convicted, the conviction would be a felony due to her actions against Mr. Poole.  So, I’m sure with this news, your client will be a very happy man for a long while,” she stated.

“Maybe, maybe not,” I said, wondering how JT would take this news.

“This probably isn’t the win that he might have wanted, but it’s a win none-the-less.  From what this brief says, Ms. Stewart won’t be bothering him or anyone else for a long while, until she gets the help she needs.  From what the psychiatrist cited in his report, Ms. Stewart is going to need some intensive treatment, that may possibly take years,” she stated as I shook my head.

“With all that you’ve told me here, he has no choice but to accept things as they are.  I don’t think it’s going to get any better than that,” I said, wondering would he actually see things as a win for him or not.

“No, I don’t think it’s going to get any better than that Howard.  But getting back to the actual reason for my call, your client is on the news for another matter,” she said as I looked at the phone and then shook my head.  “It seems his mother is under investigation and the media has gone wild.  Has he said anything to you about that?”

“No ma’am, this is the first I’m hearing about this,” I said, wondering why JT hadn’t told me about this development with his mother.  Does he even know this information?

“Well I just wanted to give you a heads up on all that was going on and I’m sorry for disturbing your private time.  You have a good one Howard,” she said.

“Thank you for the information Ms. McCormick,” I said, closing the phone as I got up from the bed and then walked over to the bathroom door and knocked, but got no answer.  Is he in the bathroom still?  He’s been in there for a very long while.  Is he okay?

“Chad?”  I called as I tapped on the bathroom door again.  “Chad, is everything okay in there?”

What’s going on?  Why isn’t he answering me?  Is there something wrong in there?  Scared, I opened the door and saw that he wasn’t in the bathroom at all.  Okay, what’s going on in here?  Where is he?  He’s not in here… He must’ve walked out of here when I had my back turned.  I wonder where he went off to.

Philadelphia, PA – FairView Behavioral Hospital – An Admittance Office

Heather’s POV

I’m really getting tired of the shit I’ve had to go through lately.  After seeing the judge the other day, he advised my stupid public defender to request a continuance of the case.  The judge then suggested that I voluntarily seek mental health counseling before he follows the recommendations of the doctors at the hospital I just left from.  The judge then made the comment that if I went to counseling on my own, things would get better.  What the hell?  How are things going to get better?

Hell, I wasn’t about to voluntarily go to counseling for something I didn’t do!  I told the judge I wasn’t going to do something like that and he didn’t like that answer.  The judge just looked at me like I was crazy, opened the report from the doctors and then made his ruling and here I am.  After being in jail and the mental health ward at the hospital, here I am at a mental health hospital, being checked in.

Was this how things were supposed to turn out for me?  I’m a star, not some damn lunatic that belongs in a mental hospital.  I’m supposed to be in Hollywood, not in Philadelphia, getting checked into a damn mental health loony bin.  With all the shit that’s happened in the past few months, I better have a big ass payday when this shit is over and done with.

“Good afternoon Ms. Stewart,” I heard someone say, walking into the room behind me.

“Nothing good about it,” I replied as the person walked around in front of me and then took a seat behind the desk.

“Well, I’m sure you could find something good about the day,” the person said as I just looked at her.  “Hi, I’m Marsha Gems, I am one of the case managers here at FairView, I will…”

“Look lady, I don’t belong here,” I said as the person stopped and then looked around a desk and then grabbed a folder.

“It says here that you have been ordered to be here by Judge…” She said as I shook my head and then held up my hand, stopping her.

“I don’t give a damn what’s written in that file or what that judge said,” I said as she frowned.  “I’m an innocent woman, but yet everyone around me keeps thinking that I did something wrong.  I haven’t done anything, yet I’m the one that’s had my rights violated and I’ve been kept away from my son.  Who’s going to fix this problem, so I can go home to my son?”

“Ms. Stewart, I’m sorry you feel this way, but…” she said as I shook my head again.

“Who do I need to talk to, so I can get the hell away from here?”  I asked.

“Right now, that would be me,” she said, flipping through the file folder as I shook my head.  “You have been ordered to be here for no less than one hundred eighty days.  Once you have been here for the required time, then the judge will see you again and see if there has been any change in things.”

“Let me go ahead and tell you… There aren’t going to be any changes here, I didn’t do anything wrong.  There’s no reason for me being here or for my having to spend time in jail the way I have.  There is no law that says I can’t sleep with my boyfriend,” I said as she frowned, sighed and then flipped a few more pages in the folder.  “Regardless of what’s said in that file, I am not crazy, I am not a criminal, I didn’t rape anyone and I sure as hell didn’t try to hurt anybody.”

“So, you didn’t have sex with a gay man while he was unconscious and then later had his baby,” the woman said, looking at me strangely.

“He’s not gay,” I said as she raised an eye at me.  “Really, he’s not gay.  Everything that’s been said is a damn lie.  He’s my boyfriend and we’re going to be married.  This is all part of his plan for the media, you see he’s a star and all and…”

“Ms. Stewart, I am not the person to explain all of this to,” she said as she picked up another folder and then pulled a page from it.  “I need you to fill out this form and we’ll get things started.”

“I’m not filling that out,” I said as she frowned and then put the form back in the folder.

“Ms. Stewart, how can we move this process along?”  She asked.

“There isn’t a way to move this process along, I don’t belong here,” I said with a smile.  “I’m not filing out any forms, I’m not doing anything that will admit that I’m crazy when I’m not.”

“No one is saying that you are crazy Ms. Stewart,” she said, shaking her head.

“If I sign anything here, that’s me admitting that I belong here,” I said as she frowned.

“Ms. Stewart, you have been ordered here by a judge,” she said as she looked at me.  “Either way, you are here and you’re not leaving until your time is up.  You can do the paperwork or not, you will still be here for the judge’s required time frame.”

“Are you fucking serious?”  I asked as she nodded her head.  “Regardless of what I do, I’m stuck here?”

“Yes,” she replied as I shook my head, wondering what my next move was.  It seems I have no options but to do what these fuckers want.

Jacksonville, FL (Baymeadows Suburb) – The Home of JT Poole – The Entertainment Room

“So, what are you going to do JT?”  Wes asked as he sat down on the sofa across from JT and Justin.

“I don’t know what to do Wes,” JT replied as he shook his head.

“You know the media isn’t going to stop until you make a statement or have a press conference, talking about what Vanessa did,” Todd stated as he sat down next to Wes and then kissed him on the cheek.

“I know, but I don’t know what to say,” JT stated as he shook his head.  “I don’t know where she is and I don’t know what’s involved in all this mess.”

“Maybe it’s time we found out,” Justin stated as he looked at JT.  “Neither of us have seen her since we got married.”

“And she was acting strange then,” JT stated as he shook his head.  “I first thought it had something to do with Dad, but now I don’t really know.”

“Speaking of your father, is there something going on with that little young thing he has working for him?”  Wes asked as JT, Justin and Todd looked at him strangely.  “Dang, why ya’ll looking at me like that?”

“Probably because you need to mind your own business Wes,” Todd stated as he got up from where he sat as Wes grabbed his hand, stopping him from leaving.  “No Wes, let me go.”

“No babe, not going to happen,” Wes stated as he got up as JT pointed his hand, indicating that both of them should leave the room.

“There’s just too much stuff to deal with right now,” JT stated as he shook his head.  “After speaking with Howard and hearing all the stuff he had to say about Heather, I was somewhat happy and relieved, but now with the other crap going on, I don’t know what to think.”

“I’m right there with you baby,” Justin said as he pulled JT close and then kissed the side of his head.  “What are you going to do?  It would be beneficial for you to do a press conference and try to distance yourself from the situation with Vanessa and Marc, but then there’s the crap that Glitter created when she made the false accusation against you with child protective services.”

“That ho is going to pay for that shit,” JT stated as he shook his head. “It’s one thing to go after me alone, but she involved my child into this mess.  She’s playing dirty and I’m not going to let her get away with it.”

“Well there’s really nothing to do about it now,” Justin stated with a frown.  “Because she called and bragged about it, doesn’t mean anyone is actually going to do anything to her in regard to it.”

“I’ll make someone do something about it,” JT stated as he shook his head.  “I’m tired of all the drama in my life.  It all has to end at some point.”

“Yeah, but the first thing we need to do is distance ourselves away from the drama,” Justin stated as he looked down.  “Remember what Brett said… When we show the outside world that we’re not going to deal with it, then it’ll stop.  We have to show the drama creators that we’re a unified front baby.”

“You’re right Justin,” JT said as he and Justin kissed as Caleb rushed into the room.

“Daddy, daddy, I can’t sleep,” Caleb stated as he sat in between Justin and JT, sitting more on JT as he wrapped his arms around him.  “Daddy, I’m hungry… Can I have some cereal?”

“You’re really hungry?  Didn’t you have a big giant meal earlier tonight young man?”  JT asked as he looked down at Caleb.  “You had three servings of everything.  Where are you putting all the grub?”

“It goes into my tummy daddy,” Caleb answered as Justin and JT laughed.  “It’s in there somewhere, but I’m still hungry.”

“Okay, let’s go find you something light to eat,” JT stated as he rubbed Caleb’s stomach and then pulled him into his arms as he got up from the sofa.  “Justin, are you coming?”

“Yeah, it’s getting pretty late and I have some work to do tomorrow,” Justin stated as the three of them left the room, heading towards the kitchen as the doorbell sounded.

“You gotta be kidding me,” JT stated as he looked at Justin.  “Who in the world could that be?”

“Let’s go see,” Justin suggested as the three of them turned and walked down the corridor, heading towards the front door as the doorbell sounded again and then the knocking started.  “Someone’s in a hurry.”

“Yeah, they are,” JT responded as he opened the door to see Shannon Tate standing there, ready to knock on the door again.

“Aunt Shan,” Caleb said as Justin looked at Caleb and then looked at the woman.

“What are you doing here, at this time of night?”  JT asked as he looked at the woman strangely.

“How could you let that happen to her?”  Shannon asked as she looked at JT with anger in her eyes.  “How could you let them do that to her?”

“Excuse me, what are you talking about?”  JT asked as he put Caleb down on the floor.  “Go to your room Caleb, I’ll come get you in a few minutes.”

“Okay Daddy,” Caleb replied as he ran off, heading to his room.

“Now you, why are you here, at this time of night?”  JT asked again, looking at the woman as he folded his arms across his chest.

“I’m here because Heather has been placed in a mental asylum someplace in Pennsylvania,” Shannon stated as JT just stood there, watching her.  “Why are you just looking at me like that?”

“I’m waiting for you to tell me what the problem is,” JT stated as he looked at Justin and then back at Shannon.

“That is the problem,” Shannon stated as she glared at JT.

“Why is that a problem?”  Justin asked as he looked at Shannon.

“She—she shouldn’t be in a place like that.  She shouldn’t be in a mental asylum,” Shannon stated as she shook her head.

“You’re right about that, she should be in prison.  Being where she is right now is very fine until she goes to prison,” Justin stated with a smile.

“What in the hell is wrong with you people?”  Shannon asked as she looked between Justin and JT.  “She doesn’t belong in a place like that.  She’s the one that’s been victimized.”

“Are you kidding me here?”  JT asked as he stepped back from Shannon.

“No, I’m not kidding here.  Heather shouldn’t be in a mental asylum or in prison,” Shannon stated as she shook her head as the tears streamed down her face.

“I’ve heard enough already, I’m going to call the police,” JT stated as he walked over to a wall panel and then pressed a button as an alarm sounded.

“What—what did you do that for?”  Shannon asked, looking around.

“I’m not going to have you stand in my house and tell me that the woman that took advantage of me and conceived a child with me, against my wishes, shouldn’t be in a mental asylum or in jail right now.  I’m a gay man that was raped by your so-called best friend and if she couldn’t be put in jail, I’m glad she’s in the mental asylum, away from me and other people she can possibly hurt.  With that being said, get the hell out of my house and don’t you dare come back here!”

“I—I never…” Shannon started as JT shook his head and then pointed at the door.

“Get the hell out before I make you get out!”  JT snapped as sirens could be heard.  “You best be gone before they get here.  When they do, you’ll regret it.”

“I—I would like to see Caleb again before I leave,” she said as JT shook his head and then pointed at the door again.

“No, I’m not letting you near my son, get the hell out of here!”  JT snapped again as the sirens got louder as a police officer rushed to the front door with his gun drawn.

“What’s the problem here?”  The officer asked as he entered the house.

“This woman is trespassing and needs to be escorted off my property,” JT stated as the officer looked at Shannon and then looked back at him. “I want her gone from here quickly.  You don’t have to arrest her, but I don’t want her here.”

“You are a real piece of work man,” Shannon stated as she pointed her finger at JT.  “You are a real piece of work.  You’re going to regret this one day and when you see the error of your ways, I hope you burn in hell!”

“Okay, with that being said, I want to press charges for her being here,” JT stated as Shannon’s eyes widened.

“What actually happened here?”  The officer asked.

“She’s not supposed to be here,” Justin replied with a frown on his face.  “She’s upset about her friend being sent away from her and she’s blaming him for it, when her friend is the one she should be blaming.”

“Hell, I don’t know how she got passed the main gate, to get to the front door,” JT stated as he looked at Shannon and then at the officer.

“Ma’am, you’re trespassing on this man’s property and you need to leave here.  Come on ma’am, don’t make this worse than it already is,” the officer said as he tried to direct Shannon outside.

“I’ll go, but you’ll regret this,” Shannon stated as JT shook his head and then waited for her and the officer to leave as he waved and then closed the door.

“Let’s go find Caleb and get him fed so we can go to sleep,” JT stated as he and Justin walked away from the door.

A Hotel in Atlanta, GA – Brian Lake’s Hotel Room

Brian’s POV

What am I going to do now?  I’ve had a whole day to sleep and think about things and yet, I don’t see any resolution to the problems Betts and I are having.  The only outcome is divorce.  I was brought up not to believe in divorce, but in this matter, I don’t see any other way.

“Regardless of what I do, she’s going to always blame me for things I haven’t done or she’s going to accuse me of stuff she thinks I’m doing,” I said aloud as I shook my head and then walked into the bathroom.

Sunday morning was the perfect example.  Even though I hadn’t done anything wrong, she thought I had because I felt bad about the things that happened between JT and me.  She actually thought I had slept with JT, talking about I must’ve done something with him because I had a guilty conscious.  Instead of her listening to what I had to say about things, she jumped to conclusions about me trying to ruin JT and Justin’s marriage and me not being able to control myself.

“Her mind always goes to something dirty and perverted,” I said, shaking my head as thoughts of some of the other things she’s said and accused me of in the past, flashed through my mind.  “When I hid out in the house on Sunday, I actually heard her talking to herself about Nick.  Why does she keep thinking I’m going to leave her for Nick?  Nick’s a married man and he’s expecting a kid of his own.  The thing with me and Nick was a long time ago and for him, that was very experimental.  He wanted to know what he wanted, and he made up his mind.”

Accusations can kill a person and I’m not going to live my life that way.  I can’t live like that and I’m not going to try.  I’m going to save myself the trouble and time and just go ahead and file for divorce.  There’s no point and trying to make things work when one of us is in agony.  That’s an agony I’m not going to live with for the next twenty years.

“That’s it, when I get up today, I’m going to go see my lawyer and put an end to all of this,” I said, washing my hands and then heading to bed.

To Be Continued…

 

 

If I Ain’t Got You – Chapter 19

Chapter 19 — What Doesn’t Kill You, Makes You Stronger

Jan 4, 2003 – Orlando, FL – The Poole-Walden Estates – JT and Mark’s Bedroom

 “You are kidding, right Angie?”  JT spoke, looking down at Angela as she shifted in his arms.  “Why do I get the feeling that I’m not liking where this is heading?”

“If you shut up and let me finish telling you what happened, then you’ll know where things went,” Angela said as JT sighed.

FLASHBACK

Downtown – The Movie Cineplex

Angie’s POV

We practically ran out of the theater, stopping only when some fans recognized him, clamoring about to get autographs and to take pictures with him.  I stood by impatiently as he signed their items and posed for pictures, smiling when he winked at me over the head of one of the little girls.  When he was done, we walked hand-in-hand back to the car, kissing and giggling like teenagers on the way.

“My place or yours,” I asked as soon as we were on the road again, cuddling up to him as he drove.

“My hotel is closer, let’s go there,” he answered, kissing me quickly as he tried to keep his mind and eyes on the road.  I slipped a hand under his shirt, teasing the taut skin on his chest and stomach as he squirmed a bit.  “Angie baby, if you don’t want us having an accident, then you need to behave yourself.”

“Oh alright, you big baby,” I said with a pout, moving back into my seat, letting him drive in peace.

Looking out the window, Kevin reached over, touching the skin on my thighs as he rubbed slow circles over my skin, teasing me, as I had teased him.  I shifted again, opening my legs a little further so that he could touch as much as he wanted.  My mind, on sights out the window, I was shocked to hell when he slipped a finger under my panties, lightly teasing my lips, while never taking his eyes off the road.

This man shocked the hell out of me.  He kept me on the edge, but never let me get too far ahead of him as he damn near caused an accident in his haste to get to his hotel.  By the time we pulled into the hotel parking lot, I was soaking wet and ready to make love as soon as we hit the room.  Kevin got out, tossing my car keys to the valet, but letting them know that the car was mine as we made our way inside to the elevators.

The doors to the elevator didn’t even close before we were all over each other again.  Kevin pushed me back against the wall, squatting and then standing with me wrapped around him like a second skin.  We tongued the hell out of each other; the whole while Kevin is freeing himself from his pants.  I could feel him, hot and hard, ready to enter me, but with his history there’s no way in hell he’s getting inside my sugar walls without a raincoat.

“Kevin… Stop… Oh fuck… We… Ahhhh… Need…  Condom,” I gasped as he brought me down against him again.  I clung to him, drowning in warm sensuality as he sucked on my bottom lip.

He reluctantly let me down, catching me when my knees buckled as he attached himself to the side of my neck from behind.  When the bell dinged for his floor, he didn’t even stop kissing me to walk to his room, he simply led me down to his room before opening the door and pushing me inside.

I swung back around, divesting myself of clothes as quickly as possible while still attached to him at the lips.  He pulled away from me long enough for the both of us to pull our shirts over our heads, lips fusing again in liquid need as soon as the deed was done.  I could feel the fear and uncertainty starting to creep up on me, but I brushed those thoughts away like gnats, intent on finding satisfaction with Kevin as soon as possible.

Kevin touched the side of my face, concern marring his features.  “We don’t have to do this Angie.  I can wait you know.”

“No, I want to do this,” I replied, not meeting his eyes as I lay down on the bed and reached for him.  “Come to me now Kevin.”

He wasted no time joining me on the bed, kissing me with an almost savage passion as I rolled the condom onto him.  He pushed me down; lips dueling with mine as he entered me in one savage thrust that made me see stars.  He stopped, allowing me to adjust to his hard length before he started to move.

He started with slow shallow thrusts, teasing me with the promise of fulfillment, but refusing to speed up when I practically begged him to fuck me harder and faster.  He captured my lips, sucking on my tongue in rhythm with his thrusting hips, driving me to the point of no return, before beginning his real assault on my senses.

“Oh fuck baby… So good,” Kevin whispered, panting as he looked deep into my eyes.  He began to thrust faster, punctuating each thrust with a kiss.  “So… Beautiful.”

“Please… Faster Kevin,” I begged, moving my hips in rhythm with his powerful thrusts.  I whimpered when he slammed into me, pushing me closer to the edge.  “Oh fuck… Like that!”

He didn’t respond verbally, he only pushed himself harder to satisfy me.  I could feel my body tighten, a sure-fire sign that I was about to have a monstrous orgasm.  No sooner did I think about it, the explosion began, working its way up from my toes.

“Kevin… I—I cominggggggg!”  I screamed, as spasm after spasm shot through my body.  I could feel Kevin shake as his orgasm slammed through him.

“Fuck… Jayce, so fucking good!”  He yelled, his body jerking as he filled the condom.  I laid there for all of a few seconds before the realization of what he said sank into my foggy brain.

“What in the hell did you just call me?”  I asked, pushing him off of me as I sat up. “I can’t believe you just called me by his fucking name Kevin.  What the fuck is your problem?”

“Angie wait… I—I’m sorry sweetheart.  Please let me explain,” Kevin stammered, reaching for me.  I turned quickly, slapping him so hard that I hurt my hand in the process.

“Keep your fucking hands off of me, you nasty son of a bitch!  I knew trusting you was wrong!  How could I let you convince me in to giving you another chance, when you told me that you were in a relationship with him?  How could I be so fucking stupid!  Screw you Kevin!  If I ever see you again, it’ll be too fucking soon!”  I screamed, grabbing my clothes, trying desperately not to break down in front of him.

I ran into the bathroom, swearing under my breath as I fought to get dressed.  As soon as I was done, I opened the door and grabbed my purse, not stopping to let Kevin say a damn word.

“Angie please… Don’t walk away from us like this,” he said as I walked past him.  I stopped in my tracks, tears slipping down my cheeks as I shook my head.

“Fuck you Kevin!  There’s no more us!  You made sure of that when you called me by his fucking name!  How could you?  What the fuck did I do to deserve that?”  I asked, fighting for control of my raging emotions.

Kevin made his way cautiously over to me, touching my face gently as he took me into his arms when he saw that I wasn’t fighting him.  I surrendered to the pain for a second, letting the hurt wash over me, before I remembered that this is the man who caused my pain.  I struggled and slapped at his chest, fighting to get away from him.

“Let me go damn it!  I hate you!  You bastard!  Get your fucking hands off of me!”  I screamed, finally succeeding in breaking the hold he had on me.

“Angie—Angie, please don’t leave me.  I do care about you,” he softly said as the tears flowed down his face.

“You should’ve thought about that before you fucked up again.  Goodbye Kevin,” I shot back over my shoulder before I ran out the door.  I needed to get home before I completely lost it and that was coming quickly.  First that bitch Valgina, now this shit here.  How much more can I take before I go completely fucking stark raving mad?

END FLASHBACK

JT’s POV

“Oh girl,” I said as she looked at me and then shook her head.

“I’ve been crying about this ever since I got back to the apartment,” she said, looking at me with a sullen look on her face.

“Oh Angie, I’m so sorry things didn’t turn out like you wanted them to,” I said, hugging her close.

“That’s just part of the problem,” she said, rubbing at her eyes.

“Don’t tell me he did more than that,” I said, letting her go.

“No, it wasn’t him then, but it’s just as bad.  That damn Kendall is throwing me out of my apartment.  He claims that I pose a threat to him, since I kicked Valgina’s ass,” she said, crying harder as I shook my head.

“What?  How do you pose a threat to him?  How does he know that you kicked her ass anyway?”  I asked.

“They’re related, she’s his cousin,” she replied as she sniffled.  “I have no idea why I didn’t put two and two together before.  They both have the same last name and he told me that he knew me in high school.  I should’ve figured it out then.”

“Ah, so you’re still here,” Mark spoke as he walked into the room, carrying a tray with plates of food on it.  “I bought enough for all of us.  Are you hungry Angie?”

“Yeah, I guess I am,” she replied, taking a plate of food from Mark.  “This looks good Mark.  What’s in the omelet?”

“Ham, cheese, tomatoes, onions and some peppers,” he replied, handing her a knife and fork.

“This smells and tastes good,” she replied, chewing her food.

“You could enjoy meals like this every day, if you moved in here with us,” I told her, knowing she probably didn’t want to move back in across the street with her mom.

“I can’t move in here with you guys.  I would be invading your space.  You two would never have any privacy if I moved in here,” she said, taking another bite of her omelet.

“Girl, you know you wouldn’t be in the way.  I have like five rooms in this house free.  You’re welcomed to have one on the other end of the hall,” I said, popping a piece of cantaloupe into my mouth.  “If you want it, it’s all yours.”

“I don’t know JT,” she said, looking down.

“Girl, just take the room.  It’s not like we don’t know you.  It’ll all be good,” Mark said, kissing her on the cheek.  “I wouldn’t have to go far to get help to get him to agree to things.”

“Ha ha ha baby.  Like you and Angie can actually gang up on me to get what you want,” I said just as the phone rang.  “Hello?”

“Is this JT?”  I heard a voice ask that sounded a bit like Aaron Canton, but I wasn’t really sure because the person was crying.

“Yes, this is JT, who’s this?”  I asked.

“I’m sorry to bother you, it’s Aaron Canton,” I heard him say.  “Look, have you seen or heard from my brother Nick?  He’s missing and I don’t know where he is.”

“I’m sorry no, I haven’t heard from him at all.  He should be at the hospital,” I replied.

“No, he’s not there.  I haven’t heard from him since he was released and I have no clue as to where he went.  I’m scared that he’s tried running away from Mom again and he’s somewhere hurt,” Aaron frantically said.

“Calm down Aaron.  Give me a half an hour and let me make some calls and I’ll see if I can have some answers for you,” I said, trying to calm down the boy.

“Thank you sir,” he said as the connection went dead.

“What’s going on baby?”  Mark asked, watching me.

“Apparently Nick Canton is missing.  Aaron hasn’t seen him since he was released from the hospital,” I said, sliding out of bed.

“Ewwww!  You said he was decent,” I heard Angie say as I realized I was standing in front of her without any sleep pants on.

“Sorry girl, I forgot.  At least he had a top on.  I forgot he didn’t have bottoms on,” I heard Mark say as I turned to see him covering Angie’s eyes.

“Now I know why I don’t want to move in here.  I might see something like this again,” Angie said, getting out of bed with her plate in hand.  “I’m going downstairs to wait for you two.”

“I’m sorry Angie, I said I forgot,” Mark said as I walked into the bathroom with a towel around my waist.

Half Hour Later – Hyatt-Regency Hotel – Nick’s Hotel Room

“How do you feel baby?”  Nick asked, leaning up on the sofa.

“I feel better, so much better baby,” Justin replied as Nick laid his head on his chest.

“I have something to say to you Justin,” Nick said, playing with Justin’s nipple.

“What is it Nicky?  Go ahead and say what you need to say,” Justin sadly said.

“I—I want to be with you forever and ever Justin. I can careless if you’re in that wheelchair or not.  I don’t care what my mother thinks; I don’t care what anyone else in the world thinks.  The only person that matters to me is you and only you baby.  I love you Justin Tanner and I hope to be Nick Tanner someday,” Nick declared as the tears streamed down his face.

“Is—is that what I think it is?”  Justin asked as the tears ran down his face.

“If you think it’s a marriage proposal, then yes baby, that’s what it is,” Nick replied, leaning in and kissing Justin’s lips.

“I—I don’t know what to say baby,” Justin said, hugging Nick close to his body.

“Well I hope you say yes,” Nick said, looking Justin in the eyes.

“Yes baby, yes I want to marry you,” Justin said as the two of them kissed again.

Later that Day – Florida Hospital – JT’s Office

JT’s POV

“Look, I really don’t want to be here, of all places, working.  So, just go ahead and tell me what the deal is Candy.  I’ll stop wasting your time, once I find out what I need to know,” I spoke into the phone.

“I’m sorry Mr. Poole, but I’m under strict orders from Mr. Tanner to keep that information private and confidential,” Candy, the nurse on duty on the prison floor stated as I shook my head.

“Excuse me; I really don’t want to have to go up there.  I’m really having a bad day and I’m not in the mood for this crap.  I asked you a direct question about the patient I’m supposed to be talking with right now and you’re giving me some line about Larry telling you not to tell me anything.  I’m the head of psychiatry services and I won’t put up with this impudence,” I said, just as Larry Tanner walked into my office.  “Oh, never mind Candy.”

“What seems to be the problem here Mr. Poole?”  Larry asked, sitting down in front of my desk.

“You can start by telling me why I’m getting the run around with Brian Lang,” I said, slinging Brian’s patient folder at him.  “I’ve been on the phone for a good hour, being bounced from person to person in this hospital, trying to get some information about this guy.”

“Had you asked me first, you would have known the deal Mr. Poole,” Larry sarcastically said with a smirk.

“Why in the hell do I need to ask you anything, before I talk with a patient that’s on my list?”  I asked, standing up as he motioned with his hand for me to sit back down.

“To start, I demoted you,” he said with a cheeky smile on his face.  “You’re no longer the head of psychiatry services around here, Valgina Williams is.  Also, you don’t have the necessary clearance around here to get information on anybody that’s considered confidential.”

“You did what!”  I snapped as he smiled again.  “You can’t do that Larry!  If you’re demoting me and putting Valgina in control of things, then I fucking quit!”

“Well you do what you have to do then JT, but my word stands as it is.  Valgina Williams is the new department head around here,” he said, getting up from the chair as he waved with that damn evil smirk on his face as he walked out of the office.

“Fuck this shit, I’m outta here,” I said, grabbing my knapsack as I picked up my crutches.

Half Hour Later – The Emergency Room Lobby

“Hey JT, what’s going on?  Where are you going?”  Angela asked, walking over to JT.

“I quit this bitch,” JT replied, walking through the lobby.

“You did what?  What are you talking about?”  Angela asked, watching JT like a hawk.

“I quit,” JT replied, pushing the door open with his crutch.  “Larry demoted me, so Val-hootchie is now the department head of psychiatry.”

“He did what?  You can’t just quit.  What about me, what about Steve?  You can’t just leave us here, with that bitch,” Angela said as she shook her head.

“Oh yes I can.  There’s no reason for me to stay here, being subjected to whatever madness that ho has in her twisted damn mind to inflict upon people.  So, I’m saving a whole lot of time, trouble, future possible lawsuits and jail time,” JT stated as he walked into the parking garage.

“What will you do JT?  What about money?”  Angela asked as JT looked over at her and then rolled his eyes.

“I can get another damn job elsewhere if need be, if not, I really don’t need to and you know this girl.  I have money and investments,” JT said, stepping into the elevator.  “Is there anything else Angie?”

“I—I guess not,” Angela replied, looking down.

“Will you be stopping by for lunch?”  JT asked.

“I guess so, probably Steve too, after he finds out that you’ve gone on and quit,” Angela said as her cell phone rang.  “Hello?”

“I’ll look for you two later on then,” JT said as Angela shook her head, holding the door.

“I have nothing more to say to you Kevin.  Lose my fucking number!  Don’t ever call me again!”  Angela snapped, pressing the ‘end’ button on the phone and then sliding it into her pocket.

“What was that all about?”  JT asked.

“Just Kevin, he’s wanting to talk again,” Angela replied, sighing as she shook her head.

“Aren’t you going to talk to him girl?”  JT asked, looking at her.

“Hell no, I’m not going to talk to him.  I told you this morning about what he did,” Angela said as she turned away from JT, shaking her head.

“Yeah, you told me with your words what he did, but you also told me with your body language of how you felt about things.  You have strong feelings for him.  It was just something that happened in the heat of passion.  You told me that he had a relationship with a man, maybe he was thinking about you, but said the wrong name,” JT stated as Angela rolled her eyes.

“Are you even listening to yourself on this one JT?”  Angela asked, crossing her arms across her chest.  “Don’t pull that psychiatry crap on me.”

“I know it sounds strange Angie, but give him a chance to explain his actions.  Just see what he has to say, before you write him off,” JT said, opening the door to the SUV as he got in.

“I can’t do that J, I just can’t.  we were making love and he—he called out another person’s name, a man’s name no less.  How do you think I felt, when I heard him call out Jayce?”  Angela asked, looking at JT as she leaned against the van door.

“I know that hurt you, but like I said, people say things in the heat of passion.  Just hear what he has to say and make sure you listen objectively Angie,” JT said as he started the vehicle.  “It’s Saturday, have a good day girl.  I know I will as soon as I get home.  I’ll be back later on to check up on Kai.”

“Alright you brat, I’ll see you at lunch,” Angela said, sighing as he walked back towards the elevator to head back inside the hospital.

Sometime Later – Larry Tanner’s Office

“Good afternoon Larry, I need to talk to you for a moment,” Larry heard someone say as he walked into his office, noticing someone sitting behind his desk, in his seat.

“Mr. Sylar, how are you doing this afternoon?  What an honor to see you sir,” Larry said, shaking the man’s hand.

“I’m doing fine Larry,” the man replied as Larry sat down in the chair in front of his desk.  “I came here to talk to you because I just heard the strangest thing.”

“You heard the strangest thing?  What was it that you heard sir?”  Larry asked, placing his hands on the desk as he looked at the man intently.

“To start, I just heard that JT Poole quit his job earlier.  I was told he quit because you told him that he wasn’t the head of psychiatry services anymore.  Why did I hear that Larry?”  The man asked.

“Well sir, I—I was told—told that he was being demoted and that the new employee, Ms. WIliams would be the new department head,” Larry stated, stumbling over his words as the man watched him.

“You heard that from where?  Where could you possibly heard that information from Larry?”  The man asked as he watched Larry fumble with his hands.

“I—I heard it in the emergency board meeting this morning,” Larry replied.

“Are you sure you heard that Mr. Tanner?”  The man asked, leaning on the desk, getting closer to Larry.  “I was in that board meeting this morning and I have no recollection of hearing what you just told me.  Which board member made that statement that you’re referring to?”

“Well sir, I—I don’t know which board member it was that made the statement,” Larry replied.

“Well I can honestly agree with you on that note.  I don’t know who said that either.  Mr. Tanner, answer me this.  Why would the hospital promote a new employee to a position of authority over an employee that’s been with us longer than the new employee has been in the field of study?”  The man asked, looking at Larry with mean look on his face.

“I don’t know the answer to that one sir.  I was just going by what I heard sir,” Larry replied as he looked down.

“Again, I don’t know what you heard, but what you’ve done here today constitutes your termination from this company Larry,” the man stated as Larry’s eyes widened.

“What?  What are you talking about Mr. Sylar?”  Larry asked, the tone of his voice rising a bit.

“When I heard that Mr. Poole had quit, I talked with some other employees around here today and they all informed me that you’ve had it in for Mr. Poole for a while now.  After reading some of Mr. Poole’s reports about things you’ve done and then reading reports from other staff members here, it seems everything you’ve done here today; you did because of Mr. Poole’s sexual orientation.  All this information leads me to believe that you only told him he was demoted, just to get under his skin to make him quit.  As of this moment Larry, you’ll tender your resignation to the board and I will assure you that you’ll leave with severance pay.  If you fight me about this matter, you’ll lose and leave with nothing,” the man stated as Larry stood up, shaking his head.

“Mr. Sylar please,” Larry said as the man shook his head.

“I want you out of this hospital by the end of business today,” the man declared as he got up from the chair and then extended his hand to shake Larry’s, but Larry refused as he shrugged his shoulders and then walked towards the door.  “Be out of here by the end of business today or I will have security escort you out.  What you’ve done here today won’t be tolerated in this workplace.”

“I don’t fucking believe this.  I’ve been fired all because of a faggot.  He’ll pay for this,” Larry said to himself, walking around the office, gathering his things.

To Be Continued…

When The Glitter Turns Gold – Chapter 15

Chapter 15 — A Lesson in History

Jun 21, 2004 – Jacksonville, FL (Baymeadows Suburb) – The Home of JT Poole – The Main Entrance

“Ah, hello James, what are you doing here?”  Justin asked as he stood at the door with a strange expression on his face.  “Does—did he know you were coming here?”

“No Justin, my being here is a complete surprise,” James replied as Justin shook his head.

“Yeah, it’s going to be a real surprise,” Justin stated as he sighed.

“I’m here so I can see my boy, my grandson and you,” James stated with a neutral expression on his face.  “I came to town, so I could try to mend my broken family.  If I’m going to have some kind of bond with my family, I have to start somewhere.”

“I—I guess you have a point there,” Justin responded as he stepped aside to allow James into the house.  “So, how long are you in town for?”

“I’ll be here as long as necessary,” James replied as Justin led him down a corridor and then stopped at a door.  “Is my boy in there?”

“No sir, Caleb’s in there, playing video games,” Justin replied with a sigh.  “JT’s still in bed.  I’ll go get him.”

“Okay Justin,” James replied as Justin smiled and then walked off.

Justin’s POV

Oh this is just great.  Is this day going to get any better or what?  With all the crap that went down with the police and the Duval County Sheriff’s office this morning, I don’t think James being here right now is going to make JT feel any better about the way things are going.  Hell, it took me almost an hour to get him to calm down, so he could go back to sleep.  Once the police left, things settled down, but I could tell he was still a bit on edge.

I don’t know what’s going through JT’s mind right now, but I bet it’s a lot having to deal with the police looking for your mother and those very same officers thinking you’re hiding her somewhere in your home, on your property.  Now that James is here, will things stay calm or will he blow things out of proportion and turn it out around here?

“Please God, please don’t let this cause a bigger problem around here,” I said to myself as I stopped at the door.

“Mmmmm,” I heard as I stepped into the room to see my baby, still in bed as he moved around a bit, but his eyes were still closed.  “Justin?”

“Afternoon baby,” I softly spoke as I walked over to the bed as he opened his eyes.

“Afternoon,” he replied with a smile as he yawned.  “Where you been?”

“I was with the mini you and we were playing video games,” I replied, not wanting to tell him that his dad was in the house.

“Who was winning, you or him?”  He asked, giggling a bit as he stretched his arms above his head and then yawned again as he smacked his lips.  “Have you two had anything to eat yet?”

“Yeah baby, you missed the mountain of cereal,” I said as he shook his head.

“I need something besides the sugary goodness of the cereal you two eat,” he said as he slid out of bed and then got up as we hugged and then kissed.

“Oh?  What is it that you need baby?”  I asked as there was a knock on the door as he turned around and looked at the door, ready to walk over and open it as Caleb’s giggles could be heard.  “Sounds like the mini you.”

“Come in,” he said as the door opened as Caleb rushed into the room, giggling excitedly as he moved over to where we were.  “Hey there little man, what’s going on?”

“Daddy, Grandpa cheats at video games,” Caleb said as I groaned as JT’s eyes widened as he turned quickly to look at me.  “He threw a blue turtle shell at me and my care blew up.”

“What’re you talking about Caleb?”  JT asked as I could actually see that vein throbbing in his forehead.

“I was playing the game with Grandpa and he cheats. He doesn’t let me win like Justin does,” Caleb stated with a fake pout as he took JT’s hand and led him out of the room and down the hall to the game room where James was as I just stood there in the hallway, wondering what was about to happen with this added event for the day.

“Well hello son,” James spoke as he got up from where he sat and then placed the game controller down in the seat as he walked over to JT and Caleb.

“James,” JT said as I shook my head, already knowing things were about to take a turn for the worst, mainly since he called him by his name.

“How are things going son?”  James asked as Caleb sat back down in his game chair and continued playing the game as JT and James moved over to a different part of the room as I walked into the room and joined Caleb, but did my best to keep my eyes on what was going on with my baby and his dad.

Now that they’ve moved to a different part of the room, I wonder what they’re talking about right now.  With him showing up right now, I’m sure he’s just as surprised as I am.  I wonder does James know about what’s going on with Vanessa… Is that the reason why he’s here now?

From what I know of James and Vanessa’s marriage, they’ve been estranged for a very long time.  The only time they were together was at our wedding and after that, Vanessa disappeared into the night and hasn’t been seen since.

Damn, looking back at the way things transpired over the past few weeks, one would believe Vanessa to be guilty of anything the record label alleges about her.  JT already figured out she had been taking money from him and now the record label alleges that she’s been stealing money from the company, along with Marc.  If she’s been stealing money with Marc, I hope she doesn’t’ come back here with that drama.  I don’t know how much more drama this house can take.

“Now wait just a minute here, it’s not my fault that you walked out and left us!”  JT snapped as I hopped up from where I sat and then turned around quickly.

“I didn’t walk out on you guys, your mother pushed…” James said as JT shook his head, waved his hands and then walked passed me, heading out of the room.  “John… Son!”

“Justin, what’s going on?”  Caleb asked as I shook my head and then pointed at the game, signaling that he stay here and keep playing as James walked passed me also, going after JT as I followed behind them.

“James, what in the world is going on?  What just happened back there?”  I asked, following behind him, noticing that the wall color had changed.

“I was trying to convince him that I’m not the monster that his mother has made me out to be over the years,” James answered as we arrived at a different part of the house, a part I hadn’t seen or been in before, a part that I didn’t even know existed.  “What is this place?”

“Don’t know, I’ll tell you when I find out,” I said, catching up to JT and grabbed him by the arm, stopping him.

“I’m not in the mood right now,” JT stated as he walked around a counter and then opened up a door that revealed it to be the door to an in-wall refrigerator.  “Just leave me the hell alone.”

“Baby, I don’t think you need that bottle,” I said as he pulled a glass down from the cabinet and then poured himself a drink.

“He’s right son, put the bottle down,” James stated as I shook my head, pissed off that he had poured himself a drink, a thing he said he wouldn’t do again.

This is about to get out of hand.  Apparently, I’ve stumbled into my husband’s private, in-house bar, which seems to be filled to the brim with every form of damn alcohol that one could ever want.  He promised me!  He promised me that before he would take another drink, he would talk things out with me first, so it wouldn’t get to that point.  Well it looks like he’s going back on his damn word.

“Son please, that’s not the answer,” James said as I looked at him.

“You don’t give any damn orders here!  You’re in my damn house, not the other way around,” JT said as he pointed the Vodka bottle at James. “I don’t have to do a gatt damn thing you say and I’m not about to listen to you either!”

“Son please,” James said again as I sighed.

“No James, you don’t have the right to call me son,” JT said as he took a drink.  “You might want to get back on that wave you rolled your ass in here on and ride it back to wherever the hell it is you came from.  I’m not interested in the bullshit, so take it with you!”

“JT!”  I snapped as he looked at me strangely as he took another sip of his drink.

“You might be my husband Justin, but that doesn’t mean you’re going to get off Scott-Free with this mess.  Why in the hell did you let him in my damn house anyway?”  He asked, looking at me like he was ready to go a few rounds, a knockout drag out round.  “With all the shit that went down this morning with the cops looking for mother, you should’ve known he would be the last person I wanted to damn see here!”

“The cops were here?  What did the cops want?  Is there something wrong?”  James asked as JT looked at him as if he could knock him through the wall.

“You know, why don’t you get the hell out of here and go call her to find out,” JT said as he took another sip of his drink as he walked around the bar.  “Make sure you make that call while you’re taking a long walk on a short pier at the beach.”

“Baby, he’s your father,” I said as he cut his eyes at me.

“That means nothing to me!”  He snapped as he took another sip of his drink and then placed the glass on the counter as he walked towards a door.  “In fact, I’ve had enough of this conversation and it’s about to come to a permanent end.”

“Son please,” James said again as he walked over to JT and then grabbed his hand as JT snatched his hand away, causing James to fall forward to the floor.  “Owww shit!”

“Don’t touch me!  Don’t you fucking touch me!”  JT snapped as he moved away from James, bumping into me and then moving quickly to get away from me.

“James, are you okay?”  I asked, helping him up off the floor.

“I’ll be alright,” James replied as he rubbed his hand and then looked at me as I noticed the tears in his eyes.  “I—I think I better just go.”

“That’s the best damn news I’ve heard all day!”  JT snapped as he picked up his glass, refilled it with Vodka and then took another drink.

“Baby, please don’t do this,” I said as he just stood over at the counter, sipping his drink as if he were ignoring me.

“The best thing for everyone is for you to just leave and not come back here,” JT spoke as he took another sip.

“I don’t want to leave son,” James stated as the tears streamed down his face.  “I love you son and I wish you would just let me show you that.”

“You already showed me what your love is, it’s nothing,” JT stated as he took another sip of his drink.  “Just leave here James and don’t come back.”

“Baby, please listen to him,” I said as he shook his head.

“I love you Justin, but this is something we’re not going to agree on,” he said as he knocked the rest of the drink back.  “Don’t fight me on this, you’ll lose.”

“Hell, I already feel like I’m losing,” I said as he looked at me funny.

“What do you mean?”  He asked.

“Look at what’s going on here,” I said as he looked at me strangely.  “You promised me that you wouldn’t do this and here we are.”

“There was nothing to talk about here Justin,” he said as he looked down.  “This man is the vain of all evil in my life and…”

“I’m not the man that hurt you son,” James spoke as the tears continued to stream down his face.  “If I’d known what your mother was doing, when you were on that damn show, I would’ve done everything I could to stop her.  She pushed me out of your lives.”

“No, you left, you allowed all those things to happen!”  JT screamed as he slammed the glass down on the counter, shattering it.  “She didn’t leave, you did!”

“I didn’t leave you on purpose son, she had me arrested, I…” James stated as JT shook his head, interrupting him.

“What the hell ever!  If that’s the case, you could’ve told someone, if that’s the truth of course,” JT stated as he moved towards James and got in his face.  “You could’ve stopped her from allowing that monster to do what he did!  Because of you and him, my innocence was taken away from me and I lost my brother!”

“I know son, but I didn’t know at the time of what your mother was doing,” James stated as I wondered what they were talking about.

“Daniel Graves is an evil man that shouldn’t be allowed to exist!”  JT snapped as he turned his back to James.

“You are totally right son,” James replied as JT swung around, grabbing him by the collar of his shirt and jacking him up off the floor.

“You know, for her to be a damn star, she made sure that monster was happy, no matter what it was he asked for!” JT snapped.  “Money, booze, drugs, sex, me!”

“Baby,” I said, finally putting the pieces together of what was being talked about.

“No Justin, this is between me and the old man here!”  JT snapped as he pushed James against the wall.  “If that fucker wanted money, she gave it to him.  If he needed drugs or alcohol, she got her ass up and went and found it for him!  If he needed his sexual tension relieved, she gave him me!  For years, he used me when he had a damn sexual itch to scratch!”

“I’m sorry son,” James stated as the tears continued to stream down his face.  “If I hadn’t been locked away, I could’ve stopped him from doing those things to you.  I’m so sorry son, really I am.  I would do anything to take all of that back and keep that fool from messing with you, but I can’t go back in time.”

“That’s right, nobody can do that!”  JT snapped as he looked down as the tears streamed down his face.  “Nobody can undo what Daniel Graves did to me or Josh!  It’s too late for anything to be done!”

“No it’s not too late,” James stated as JT looked up at him.  “That monster is dead son, that monster is dead.”

“What do you mean that monster is dead?”  JT asked as he looked at James closely.

“He’s dead and gone son,” James stated as I looked at James, wondering where this conversation was about to go.

“How do you know that he’s dead and gone?”  JT asked.

“Because I was the one that made sure he was dead and gone,” James stated as I covered my mouth and then stepped back a bit, not knowing what to think.

“What?  What are you trying to pull here?”  JT asked.

“I’m not trying to pull anything here son,” James stated as he looked down.  “Where do you think I’ve been all this time son?”

“I don’t know where you’ve been,” JT replied as he looked at James strangely.

“I—I spent seven years in a correctional facility in Cape Vincent, New York,” James stated with a frown as he looked down at the floor.  “I found Daniel Graves after you left the television show and I confronted him.  He told me about all the things that he made you do, so that you and Vanessa could be stars.  He even showed me some of the things he had you do, he used to tape you.  When he told me about all the degrading things he had done to you, I lost it son and I beat the hell out of him.”

“James, I…” JT stated as James shook his head and then continued his story as the tears continued to fall from his eyes.

“I couldn’t handle it son.  When I saw him doing those things to you on the television screen, my mind just… It just shut off and something animalistic inside of me took over.  I beat him within an inch of his life and I did to him, what he had done to you.  When I calmed down, he laughed at me and said he had experienced things more drastic than what I had done and then he opened a door to show me his so-called collection of sex toys.  So, I handcuffed him to his bed and beat him so more.  I kept on beating him and he kept on laughing at me.  I was so mad that I grabbed his baseball bat and then I shoved it up his ass so hard that I saw blood.  He stopped laughing as he struggled to get up from the bed.  He begged and pleaded for me to take it out, that he was in severe pain.  I told him I didn’t care, that he should think about the pain that he had caused you.”

“James, I don’t think you need to go on,” I said as he looked at JT and then sighed.

“He stopped moving around on the bed, so I took the handcuffs off of him and then slapped his face.  He had passed out from the pain.  I removed the bat from his ass and then sat down on the floor, crying about what I had done.  He came to a few minutes later, saw me and then hopped up off the bed and then ran around the room like a damn fool.  He was so out of it that he tripped on one of his toys and fell out the window to his death.  I got up and rushed over to the window and stood there, watching as the police arrived.  They came up to his place an hour later and arrested me,” James explained as JT moved away from him.

“So, you were in prison for seven years… What happened to all the other years that you missed with me James?”  JT asked.

“I was released from the correctional facility in May of two thousand and two,” James stated as he looked at JT as JT just stood there.  I wonder what thoughts are going through his mind after hearing all that his dad had to say.  “At the time, you and your friends were touring the world and you had since them moved from the home I knew of.”

“That’s your only excuse for staying away so long?  Why didn’t you approach me with this sooner?  Why are you telling me this now?”  JT asked as he looked down as I walked up behind him, touching his hand as he allowed me to wrap him up in a hug.

“Because I didn’t know how to tell you son,” James stated as I saw the pleading look in his eyes.  “I—I thought that getting rid of that monster would make things alright, but the only thing it did was take me away from you and your brother.”

“So, does Mother know about this?”  JT asked as James nodded his head.

“She knew everything I did.  In a way, she was somewhat responsible for the actions I took,” James stated as he shook his head.  “Vanessa is a very manipulative woman son, I’m sure you already know that.”

“Yes, I know that James… Dad,” JT said as he sniffled.  “I—I’m sorry… I’m sorry both of you.”

“It’s okay son,” James stated as he opened his arms wide as JT moved away from me and then hugged him.  “This is a happy moment in my life right now.  The only thing missing right now is Josh.”

“Well he’s not too far away from here,” JT spoke as the main door alarm sounded.

“Who could that be?”  I asked as JT turned and looked at me.

“All you have to do is open that door and see,” JT stated as he pointed at a door across the room.  “That door leads to the front door.”

“We’re in the front of the house?”  I asked as he nodded his head.  “Damn, I’m really going to need a map of this place.”

“When I first had this place built, I had it set up to resemble the shopping mall downtown at the river,” JT stated as James perked up.

“So, this place is like the Jacksonville Landing?”  James asked as JT nodded his head.  “I stopped in there this morning since I’m staying at the Omni Hotel.”

“Why in the hell did you choose to stay at that place?”  JT asked as he turned up his nose.  “You could’ve done better going to the Hilton in the opposite direction.”

“I’ll have to speak to David about that,” James stated as I looked at him strangely.

“What’s the deal with David?  Is there something you want to tell me?”  JT asked as James just looked at him.

“David is my manservant,” James stated as I wondered was he telling the truth about that.

“Is that all he is to you Dad?”  JT asked.  “Everywhere you go, he’s there.  Every step you made at our wedding, he was close by, as if he was a second skin to you.  Is he your boyfriend?”

“No, David is not my boyfriend, he’s my manservant,” James stated as he looked at JT closely.  “He makes sure that my every want and need is taken care of.”

“Sounds like a boyfriend to me,” JT stated as James glared at him.  “Okay, I’m just saying Dad.  I would be okay with it if he were.”

“Well there’s nothing for you to be okay with, he’s a manservant and nothing more,” James stated as he folded his arms across his chest as the doorbell sounded again.

“I think one of us needs to get that,” I said as I walked over to the door that JT indicated earlier and opened it to see an unknown black woman standing there with Todd and Wes.  “Guys, who’s this?”

“Ah Justin, where’s JT?”  Todd asked as I looked at him funny.

“Why?”  I asked as he motioned with his head at the woman.

“Hi, my name is Juanita Bishop and I’m here from Children and Family Services of Duval County and I’m here to see a JT Poole and a Caleb Stewart,” the woman spoke as I’m sure my eyes went wide as saucers.

Lawd, what new hell is this?  Why is this person from family and children services here?  What in the hell is going on now?  Please God, please don’t let there be no more drama, I don’t think this house can handle any more today.

“What’s going on?”  JT spoke as he moved around me, walking towards the woman.  “I’m JT Poole, what is it that you need to see me and my son for?”

“I’m here to see the two of you to clear up some things,” the woman replied as JT looked at her strangely.

“What things need to be cleared up?”  JT asked as he folded his arms across his chest, taking a defensive stance.

“Maybe we should go somewhere a bit more private and discuss this,” the woman suggested as JT shook his head.

“No, right here is just fine,” JT stated as he waited for the woman to continue.

“I’m here because there’s been an accusation of neglect,” the woman stated as I shook my head.

“What?  Who made the accusation?  Was it Heather?  Who made this accusation against me?  I’m not neglecting my son,” JT stated as he shook his head.  “I really don’t need this drama!”

“Mr. Poole, maybe you should calm down,” the woman spoke.

“That’s Mr. Poole Tanner to you,” JT spoke as I smiled, being that’s the first time I’ve officially heard him use my last name with his.

“Excuse me?”  The woman spoke as she held up a clipboard, flipped some pages and then looked at JT strangely.  “You are John T. Poole, right?”

“I’m John T. Poole Tanner,” JT replied as he shook his head.  “Okay lady, out with it.  Who made this bogus accusation against me, so I can call my lawyer and sue someone, this is…”

“Sir, I’m here to see you and your son so I can get this matter squared away,” the woman said as JT shook his head.

“You’ve seen me and that’s enough for right now,” JT stated as the woman looked at him strangely.  “I’m not going to let some stranger, in off the street, just barge into my house and demand to see my son.  I don’t care who you are.”

“Sir, I’m trying to help you out here,” the woman stated as JT shook his head.

“Ma’am, I don’t know you from Eve off the street,” JT stated as I walked up behind him and stopped him from going on with his rant.  “So, if you would so kindly get the hell out of my house.”

“Fine Mr. Poole, you’ll see me again,” the woman said as she wrote something down on the clipboard and then walked out the main door of the house.

Personally, I didn’t think it would’ve been a problem for her to see Caleb.  I’m just wondering myself about who could’ve made those accusations against him.  Was it Heather that made the accusation or someone else?  Being that it’s been really quiet on the Heather front, it’s been a few days since we’ve heard anything about her, maybe it’s her time to start spouting off some new hot shit.  Okay God, I begged.  I guess I need to beg a bit more.  With all the crap that’s happened here today, maybe moving out to LA isn’t such a bad idea after all.  Moving into a different house, one without a built-in bar would be great.

To Be Continued…

When The Glitter Turns Gold – Chapter 14


Chapter 14 — Not Really Escaping Reality

Jun 20, 2004 – Atlanta, GA – The Home of Brian Lake – The Family Room

Elizabeth’s POV

Where in the hell is Brian?  I can’t believe he’s been gone all damn day!  I just know he’s somewhere, fooling around with a damn man!  Why didn’t I just leave him when I had the chance to do so?  The others tried to warn me, but I didn’t listen because I thought I was in damn love.  We have a child now, so there’s no damn turning back.  He doesn’t believe in divorce, but I don’t believe in spending the rest of my life with a man that has a problem, a big damn problem, differentiating which sex he likes, male or female!

Damn it, where is he right now?  Is he with Nick?  Xander?  Jamie?  Is he somewhere at a damn sleazy ass hotel with some random man he met on the chat line?  Where in the hell could he be right now?  What could he possibly be doing right now since he’s not here with me and his child?  He’s supposed to be here with me and his child, not wherever the hell he is right now.

Today has been one of those damn days that I don’t want to experience again.  Since we’ve been together, this is the first time we’ve missed going to church together.  When I walked into the church this morning, all eyes were on us.  The way people looked at us, it felt like I was on trial for something.  I felt all dirty inside, but I shouldn’t, especially since I’m the one that did nothing wrong.  My husband is the wrong doer here, yet I got the daggers of death from the congregation.  Those people sat there, watching the two of us as if we were on parade or something.  When church was over, I was so happy to get the hell out of there.  I normally enjoy hearing the word, but this morning, my heart was just not feeling it.

“Betts, what’s going on?”  Sam, my best friend asked as she walked into the room.  “Are you okay?  Is there something wrong with the baby?”

“The baby is fine Sam,” I replied as she looked at me strangely.

“If the baby’s fine, what’s going on?  Why did you have me drop what I was doing to get over here quickly?”  She asked with a frown on her face.

“I—I think Brian’s cheating on me,” I blurted out as she looked at me strangely and then shook her head.  “He—he left early this morning and I haven’t seen or heard from him since.”

“Oh God, I’m so sorry Betts,” she said as she moved closer and hugged me.  “I knew there was something up with him.  Do you happen to know who it is?  Is it Angie?  Donna?  Lacey?”

“What?  No… I don’t know who it is,” I replied, never thinking in a million years that Brian would cheat on me with another woman, but at the mention of those names and some of the things I’ve seen at some of the recent church functions lately, maybe I have something to worry about on the male and female side of things.

“Then how do you know he’s cheating on you?  Has there been signs?”  She asked as I really didn’t know what to say.  It’s not like I’m going to tell her about Brian’s past with men.

“Yes, there’ve been signs,” I replied, looking down.  “Today is a big sign.  He goes away like this and stays off and I don’t know where he goes off to.  I call his phone and he doesn’t answer.”

“Does he get phone calls from others and he act secretive or something?”  She asked as I shook my head no.  “Does he make phone calls and…”

“Betts!”  Brian’s voice was heard as the front door slammed.  “Betts!”

“In here,” I called out as he rushed into the room and then stopped in his tracks when he saw Sam.

“What are you doing here?”  He asked, looking at her like he wanted to hit her.

“I’m here, consoling your wife,” she replied as I shook my head as he looked at her strangely and then walked towards me.

“You’re consoling my wife?  What are you consoling her for?”  He asked as he stood before the two of us.

“I’m sure you already know, being that you’ve been missing all day,” she replied as he smirked at her and then smiled at me.

“What other little tales has my wife been telling you?”  He asked as he looked at me closely as I wondered what was going through his mind.

“I think I should be going now,” Sam said as she looked at me strangely and then started walking out of the room.  “I’ll talk with you later on.”

“Good night Sam,” I said as I moved away from Brian.

“Yeah, good night Betts,” Sam replied as I heard the front door open and then close.

“Now that your whore of a friend has left us, what has my pretty little wife been up to?”  Brian asked as he caressed my face and then pushed a few strands of hair from my face.

“I’ve been worried about you Brian,” I replied as he shook his head.  “You’ve been gone all day long and I haven’t seen or heard from you until now.  Church went terrible and…”

“Church went terrible?  Why is that?  I had a great time at church this morning,” he said with a smile.  “I had a wonderful time watching you squirm under the watchful eye of the congregation.”

“You were at church this morning?  Why didn’t I see you?”  I asked.

“I didn’t want you to see me,” he replied, moving away as he turned around.  “I wanted you to feel the exact same way you make me feel every time you accuse me of something I haven’t done.  You make me feel alienated and alone.  I’m sure you felt that way today.  I saw the look on your face when you walked into church and I saw how anxious you was to leave.”

“Of course I wanted to leave,” I said as he shook his head.

“And right now, so do I,” he said as he turned and looked at me.  “I’m tired of this Betts.  I’m tired of always having to defend myself because of my past actions.”

“Because of your past is the reason you have to defend yourself Brian,” I said as he shook his head.

“No matter what I do, whether I’m here with you or not, I’ll always have to put up with you thinking I’ve done something.  I can’t live like that and I’m not going to either,” he said as he sighed.  “So, what are we going to do about this Betts?  Which one of us is leaving?”

“I—I’m not leaving and neither are you,” I said as he shook his head.

“One of us is leaving this relationship Betts,” he said as he crossed his arms across his chest.  “I’ll just go ahead and take the lead and leave here.”

“No Brian, don’t!”  I snapped as he walked out of the room.  “Brian, don’t do this!”

“You made that decision clear this morning,” he said as I heard his footsteps on the stairs.  “When I’m done packing, I’ll go check into a hotel.  We’ll talk later on in the week about our child.  Goodbye Betts.”

“Brian please,” I said as I heard a door close.

Jun 21, 2004 – Jacksonville, FL – The Omni Hotel – The Hotel Room of James Poole

“Damn boy, was this the best you could do?”  James asked as he walked into the room behind David.  “This room looks rather small.”

“This is just the main room sir,” David responded as he walked over and pressed a button on the wall, turning on more lights in the room.

“Still, I think you might’ve could’ve done better than this,” James stated as he shook his head.  “Go ahead and unpack my things… Get a bath ready for me also.”

“Yes sir,” David replied with a nod of his head and then walked to the room he thought was the bathroom to handle James’ request.

“Boy, I’m a little bit lunchy, does this place have room service?”  James asked as David emerged from the bathroom as the sound of water running could be heard.

“I don’t believe so sir, but if you like, I’ll run out and get you something from the place across the street that we passed on our way in or I can try to find a late night place that we could go to, whichever you prefer sir,” David stated, bowing his head, waiting for James’ answer.

“I’m not in the mood for going back out, so it’s best if you run across the street and fetch me something,” James stated as David nodded his head and then walked back into the bathroom, the sound of the running water, stopped as David came back.  “On second thought, I’m not ready for a bath either.  I think we can find a place to eat.”

“Okay sir,” David stated with a small smile.

“While we’re out, I’ll get the lay of the land and possibly find some place to take my grandson to, if my son would allow me to,” James stated as David nodded his head and then walked over to the table and picked up the car keys.  “I wonder what my boy and his son are doing right now.”

“Probably asleep sir, being that it’s after midnight,” David stated as he and James walked to the door.

“I guess I’ll find out later on today, when everyone is awake,” James stated as he and David walked out of the room and down the hall, headed towards the elevator.

Across Town (Arlington Suburb) – The Apartment of Josh Raymond – The Kitchen

Josh’s POV

“Damn, I really need to get to bed,” I said as I shook my head and then got up from the table.  “I shouldn’t be eating this late anyway.  Besides, that crap was terrible.  If I would’ve had this crap earlier, while Brad was here for dinner, I would’ve been totally embarrassed by whatever the hell that was.  Hell, was that really chicken or what?”

I think I’ll think twice about picking up something from that Chinese place again.  I think I’ll stick with the regular stuff for a while.  Walking over to the sink, I placed the plate on the counter and then started the water.

“I’ll go ahead and get this crap washed…” I said, stopping the water when I thought I heard a knock at the front door.  “Who could that be?  I’m not expecting anyone at this time of night.  Shoot, anyone I know would’ve called to let me know they were coming here.”

It’s almost two in the morning, so who could that be at the damn door?  Sighing, I walked out of the kitchen and over to the front door as the knocking stopped.  Opening the door, I saw Layla standing there.  What in the hell is she doing here, at this time of night?

“What do you want Layla?  Do you know what time it is?”  I asked as she just looked at me as if I hadn’t said anything.  “I thought I told you not to come here anymore.”

“I want you Joshua,” she said as she stepped closer to me, kissing my lips as I pushed her back away from me.

“No Layla, don’t touch me!”  I snapped as she shook her head.

“Come on baby, please don’t do this to me,” she said as I shook my head.  “I love you.”

“You don’t love anyone!”  I snapped as I grabbed the door to close it, but she stopped me from doing so.  “Just go away Layla, leave me the hell alone!”

“I’m not going to leave you alone baby, don’t do this to me… Please baby,” she said as I shook my head again.

“I’m not doing anything to you.  You did it all to yourself!”  I screamed as a few lights across the way came on.  “Leave Layla, leave me alone!”

“I love you Josh, I’m not going to leave you alone.  We—we’re meant to be together,” she said as I shook my head again.

“We’re not meant to be together Layla, just leave me the hell alone!”  I said as she grabbed my arm, trying to pull me close, to hug her.  “No Layla, stop it damn it!  Get the hell off of me!”

“You two need to close that shit down, it’s too late at night for that shit!”  Someone yelled as Layla looked around.

“Yeah, shut the hell up or I’m calling the damn cops!”  Someone else yelled as Layla sighed.

“Just let me in Josh,” she said as I shook my head no.

“Layla, get the hell away from me,” I said, trying to close the door again.

“Come on baby, I’m trying to show you that I love you,” she said as I shook my head again.

“I don’t love you Layla, I—I’m gay,” I said, hoping that would shut her up and make her leave me alone.  “I’m gay, so I don’t love you.  I love someone else.”

“You—you’re not gay Josh,” she said as I nodded my head.

“I’m very gay,” I said as she looked down as I noticed a few tears rolling down her cheeks.  “You need to leave before—before ah—ah…”

“See, you’re not gay,” she said as she wiped at her eyes.

“Yes I am,” I replied, trying to think of other things to say, to convince her so she’ll leave me the hell alone.  “Robert will be here real soon and if he sees you here, it’ll cause a real big problem.  You need to leave here and never come back.”

“I—I don’t believe you,” she said as I sighed again.

“Fine, I’ll help everyone out and just call the police myself,” I said as her eyes widened as she stepped backwards.

“Fine, I’ll leave right now, but I’ll be back,” she said as I shook my head and then closed the door.

Damn, that tramp has me telling lies about myself, just to get her to leave me the hell alone.  I can’t be telling lies like that, just to get away from her.  The next time she pops up, I’ll just call the police and not let it get that drawn out.

Across Town (Baymeadows Suburb) – The Home of JT Poole – The Parking Area

Chad’s POV

What in the hell is wrong with me?  Am I that much of a fucking screw up?  Damn, it only took me a few minutes to mess things up and I wasn’t even trying to.  Why can’t I be happy like all of my friends are?  Am I fucking cursed or what?  It seems everyone around me is happy with someone, but me.  JT’s married and has a kid now, Todd finally came out of the fucking closet and now he has a boy-toy, Devon has a few boy-toys of his own and the three of them are happy in their triad relationship and Ronald—Ronald is the strange one, but hell, he’s happy with what he has with the so-called sex slave boys he has.  So, why can’t I have someone to make me happy?

Why does it seem like I’m destined to be alone forever in life?  Tonight was so perfect and then I had to go and mess it up.  I don’t get how I messed it up, but it seems I did.  I wasn’t trying to mess things up with Howard, but I did.  I was only trying to show him how I felt, but looking back on things, I don’t know what I was trying to show him.  Howard is… He—he’s hot and he seems like the perfect guy that I could fall in love with.  Damn, he’s really hot and he has a nice personality.  He has everything I want in a man… Well almost everything, being that I don’t know how good he is in the bedroom.  With the way things happened earlier, I don’t think I’ll ever find…

“Chad,” I heard as I looked up to see Howard standing there with a sad, but serious look on his face.

“Howard, you’re here,” I said with a smile as I stood up from the bench and moved over to where he stood.

“I—I’m sorry Chad, I—I didn’t mean…” he said as I shook my head and then leaned in and kissed his lips softly.

“It’s okay,” I said as he smiled at me.  “Do you want to come inside with me and…”

“And talk,” he said as he slid his hands around my waist, pulling me close as we kissed again.

“That sounds perfect to me,” I said as we walked towards the house.

Thank you, God, for sending him back to me.  It looks like I’m going to get a second chance to make a good impression on this hot, sexy, intelligent lawyer man.  With him coming back the way he did, that could be a sign that things are starting to look up for me.  I just hope I don’t do anything stupid to screw this second change up.  I like him and I totally want this to work out.

Almost 4 AM – The Master Bedroom

Justin’s POV

Lord, what’s going on around this place?  I don’t know if I should be crying or throwing my hands up and saying fuck it all.  Between being pissed off with my husband, a few of his friends and his family, I don’t know what to say or thing right now.  For the life of me, I’m starting to think our life together is doomed—doomed to experience bad things.  I hope that’s not the case, but it seems like every time I turn around, something bad is going on.  Please Lord, please let things get better around here for all of our sakes.  With all that’s happened tonight, I don’t think any of us can handle any more drama.

“Justin,” I heard as I turned around to see JT look up from his pillow at me.

“Yeah baby,” I answered as he patted the empty space next to him.

“I’m waiting for you, I can’t sleep,” he said with a sniffle.

“Give me a moment,” I said as I pulled my t-shirt over my head and tossed it across the room as I toed my socks off and then climbed into bed next to him, wrapping my arms around him as he moved his head to my chest, cuddling up to me.

“I love you Justin,” he said as he sniffled.  “I’m sorry if I didn’t show you that today.  I didn’t mean to make you feel—feel like shit.”

“I didn’t feel like shit baby, I felt like there was a part of you that I didn’t have,” I replied, voicing my feelings for the first time the whole day, even though it was almost five in the morning.  “It was like you showed a different side of yourself when Chad popped up.”

“Chad is one of my dearest friends,” he said as he sniffled again.  “He…”

“He bought you a house for your birthday,” I said as he pulled back from me and then slid up in the bed, looking at me.

“No Justin, he bought us a house,” he said, his eyes never leaving mine.

“Baby, how could he buy us a house?”  I asked, looking at him like he was crazy.

“The house that Chad bought, I’ve had my eyes on it for a very long time.  He knew that I liked the house.  Hell, if he hadn’t bought it, I would have.  I love this house, but I’m not wanting to spend the rest of my life here in Jacksonville,” he said as he looked down.  “Now that Nikki has her own family and Glitter’s acting like a prime-time bitch, I would rather be out in LA, than here.  This place holds…”

“She has her own family, but that doesn’t mean you need to get rid of this place,” I said as he looked down again. “If you get rid of this place, you’ll regret it later.”

“I’m not going to get rid of this place, but I’m not going to spend twenty-four seven here,” he said as he sniffled.  “Too much shit has happened here; I think it’s time for some changes.  That shit with Glitter should’ve been an eye opener.  Hell, I thought you would agree with me on that.”

“I do agree on some level, but…” I said as he shook his head, interrupting me.

“If I stay here, I’ll go insane.  I don’t need no more drama from Glitter or anyone else for that matter.  I need some peace in my life and I’m sure you want the same,” he said, wiping at his eyes.

“What about your friends, your brother that lives here?”  I asked.

“That’s what they make plans and trains for Justin,” he replied as he shook his head.  “I’m tired of talking Justin.  Let’s just go to sleep.”

“Okay baby,” I said with a frown as I reached over to the bedside table lamp and turned it off.  Thank you God for allowing things with my husband to finally settle down.  I thought he was going to go on and on about Glitter, Marc and Vanessa for the rest of the night.  He’s tired and ready to sleep and I guess we’ll pick this subject up again later on when he wakes up.

Jacksonville, FL (Baymeadows Suburb) – The Home of JT Poole – Chad’s Guest Bedroom

Howard’s POV

I’m having the most wonderful time of my life right now.  Hot damn, it’s almost six in the morning, but I don’t really mind that at all.  If I were at home right now, I would just now be getting up to start my boring routine of going jogging, coming back home to have breakfast, read the paper, catch the news, shower and be off to work.  I’m glad that I came back here to see Chad.  If I hadn’t, I would more than likely be home, regretting my actions.

Since coming back here to talk with him, we’ve been in the same spot, in this bed, kissing, cuddling and of course, talking.  Is he the guy I’ve been waiting for?  Have I found what I’ve been missing for so long?  I—I’ve never felt this way before and I don’t want this feeling to end.  Is this what love feels like?

“Howard,” Chad spoke as he moved around in my arms, adjusting himself to the curvature of my body.

“Yeah Chad,” I replied as I felt him drawing circles on the skin of my stomach with his finger.

“Are you happy that you came back here to see me?”  He asked, his other hand playing with the drawstring of my track shorts.

“Yes, I’m very happy,” I replied as I could feel his facial muscles move against my chest.  I hope he’s smiling about that.

“I’m happy too,” he stated as I ran my fingers through his hair.  “If he makes you feel like a million-dollar bill, say oh oh…”

“I didn’t know you could sing,” I said, recognizing the lyrics from one of the songs JT sang on his bootleg demo that he sent out to the radio stations recently.

“Just a little bit,” he replied as a phone could be heard, ringing very loudly somewhere in the house.  “Damn, I wonder who that could be at this time of the morning… JT’s really going to rip someone a new one for that.”

“You’re probably right about that,” I said, thinking about the times that JT yelled at me for calling him before noon.  “Whoever it is, I hope it’s worth it.”

“For their sake, it better be an emergency,” he said as the sound of a slamming door was heard.  “Uh oh, someone’s in for it now.”

“No baby, stop!”  I heard Justin’s voice and then another door slammed.

“Uh oh, was that Justin?”  He asked, moving closer to me.

“I believe so,” I replied, sliding up a bit in the bed as the sound of another door slammed.

“I—I hope they’re not fighting,” he said, sliding up in the bed also as he moved into a sitting position.

“With all that’s happened, now isn’t the time for fighting amongst the two of them,” I said, thinking about all the stuff going on in JT’s life, mainly the new additions of a child and a husband.  It seems like the new additions in his life are helping with keeping him calm, but not much.  I fear that before everything else is said and done, JT’s going to have a mental breakdown and I don’t know what’s going to happen then.

The Main Entrance

“Come on baby, you need to calm down,” Justin stated as he and JT stood at the front door, watching a few police officers walk around as the paparazzi snapped pictures at the gate.

“I’m not about to calm down!”  JT snapped as he turned and looked at Justin.  “My mother isn’t even here and the police is here, looking for her!”

“Let them do their job baby,” Justin said with a sigh.  “When they see that she’s not here, they’ll leave and we can go back to sleep.”

“That’s not the point Justin!”  JT snapped as he shook his head.  “Those fools out there is what I’m worried about!  They’re taking pictures of what’s going on here, like I’m a damn criminal!”

“You didn’t do anything baby,” Justin said as JT shook his head.

“You know as well as I do that the fans and the media is going to see something else,” JT stated as he shook his head again.  “They won’t care that the police is looking for my mother, they’ll think that the police is here to get me!  I didn’t do anything wrong and yet, I’ll be the one persecuted in the damn media!”

“Maybe things won’t turn out like that,” Justin said as footsteps could be heard behind them.

“JT, what’s going on?  Why are there police cars outside?  Is something wrong?”  Todd asked.

“The police are here, looking for my mother,” JT replied as he held his head down.

“Oh good, I thought they were here to get… Never mind,” Todd stated as he turned around in a hurry and then rushed down the hall.

“See, even my damn friends think the police are here to get me!”  JT snapped as a reported jumped the fence and rushed to the door.

“JT Poole, can you tell the world what’s happening here?”  The guy asked as he held a tape recorder up to JT’s face.

“What in the hell do you think you’re doing?  Get the hell out of my face man!”  JT snapped as he pushed the man backwards, causing him to fall down to the ground.

“Did you see that?  He attacked me!”  The guy yelled, motioning to the police officers.  “I want to press charges, he attacked me!”

“I attacked you?  You’re on my property damn it!”  JT screamed as the police officer grabbed the guy and escorted him back to the gate.

“Baby please,” Justin said as a few camera flashes went off.

“Those fuckers are invading our privacy!”  JT snapped as Justin sighed.

“It’s okay,” Justin replied as a police officer walked over to where they stood.

“We executed the search warrant and didn’t find anything Mr. Poole.  Sorry for the inconvenience Mr. Poole,” the police officer stated as he handed JT a piece of paper.  “This is for any damage that might have been caused.  Call the number at the bottom and someone there will help you out.”

“I don’t…” JT started to say as Justin covered his mouth.

“Thank you sir,” Justin spoke as he waved with his other hand and then moved back as he kicked the door closed with his foot.  “Let it go baby, we can go back to sleep now.”

“Whatever,” JT said, glaring at Justin as he stomped off down the hall.  “I’m going back to bed.  If those vultures are still outside when I wake up, they’ll regret it!”

“Baby,” Justin said as a door slammed.

To Be Continued…