The Ties That Bind – Chapter 6


Chapter 6 — Troubles of JT and Justin’s World

Aug 24, 2004 – Los Angeles, CA – A Parking Lot Behind a Pizza Eatery

“Laugh all you want man, but that really gets to be a problem when you’re just trying to spend time with family or friends,” Justin said as Chad opened the door, waiting for Zach to get inside, behind his seat.

“Yeah, it gets old, but that’s a part of being a celebrity man,” Chad stated as Josh looked at him strangely and then got into the jeep.

“When it comes to fans interrupting our private time, trying to get autographs and pictures, that’s just too much,” Justin stated with a frown.  “There’s a time and place for that and sometimes people just don’t realize that.”

“You have a point there Justin, but the fans aren’t always considerate of a celebrity’s private time,” Chad stated as he got into the jeep, getting ready to close the door as something fell from his pants’ pocket.  “What did I drop?”

“Justin Tanner!”  Someone yelled as JT and Justin sighed.

“Not again,” JT said as he ushered Caleb into the jeep quickly.  “Come on Caleb, get into the seat and buckle up.”

“Okay Daddy,” Caleb replied as he got into the seat next to Chad as Josh got into the jeep next.

“Justin Tanner, stop right there!”  Someone yelled as Justin got into the jeep quickly and then pulled out his cell phone just as a woman with a baby in her arms arrived at the window, tapping on the glass.  “Justin, stop, it’s me… It’s me Laci!”

“Whoa, looks like we got a live one,” Chad said as JT turned and looked at him.

“Justin, I need to talk to you, it’s very important!”  Laci exclaimed as Justin looked at the window and then scratched at his head as he tried to dial a number on his phone.  “Come on Justin, it’s me Laci, your girlfriend.”

“What!  Did she say girlfriend?”  JT asked, looking at Justin and then leaning forward so he could see the woman at the window.

“Look lady, I don’t know you and I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Justin stated, pressing the button to close the window as she put her arm through the window, stopping it from going up.  “Look lady, what’s your problem?  If you want an autograph, this isn’t the way to go about getting one.”

“I don’t want your autograph,” Laci stated as she shook her head.

“What in the hell do you want then?”  JT asked as he leaned against the dashboard of the jeep, trying to see the woman.

“What I want is for him to take care of his child,” Laci stated as JT’s eyes went wide as he turned his attention to Justin.

“You want him to take care of his child?  Justin, what in the hell is going on here?  Who in the hell is this woman?”  JT asked, sliding against the door of the jeep as Chad sighed.

“Baby, I don’t know what she’s talking about here,” Justin replied as he turned to look at JT.  “Seriously baby, I don’t know what’s going on here.  I don’t know her, and I don’t have a child with her or anyone for that matter.”

“Stop trying to act like you have amnesia Justin,” Laci stated as she removed the hat that covered the baby’s head.  “You know what’s going on here Justin.  You’ve been neglecting your son and me for a long time and it’s time for that to be rectified.”

“Lady, you are crazy, I don’t have any kids!”  Justin snapped as Laci tried to open the door to the jeep as she would pull the lock up and he would press the button to lock the door back.

“Stop playing games with me man, I don’t have time for this,” Laci said as she shook her head.  “Your son is right here in my arms and he needs his mom and his dad in his life.”

“Lady, I don’t know you!  I don’t have a child with you!  I’m a happily married man and…” Justin said as Laci shook her head.

“You were with me, before you got with him!”  Laci screamed, pointing her finger in Justin’s face.  “You told me that you love me!  You promised me!  You promised me that you would be with me and that you would take care of me!”

“Baby, she’s delusional,” Justin stated as JT folded his arms across his chest, listening to what was going on.  “Come on baby, you’re not believing her, are you?”

“I think you guys should just call the police and let the police deal with her,” Chad stated.

“How are the police going to shed light on what he promised me?”  Laci asked, looking at Chad and then back to Justin.  “The police had nothing to do with the nights of love we shared.”

“Oh God,” JT said as he shook his head as some tears fell from his eyes.

“Bro, are you alright?”  Josh asked, placing a hand on JT’s shoulder as Caleb watched what was going on.

“Justin, just start the jeep and let’s go,” JT stated as he sat back in the seat.

“You can’t leave, this isn’t over with!”  Laci screamed.  “You can’t leave until you tell me what you’re going to do about taking care of your son!”

“That’s not my son!”  Justin snapped as the baby started to cry.

“Shhhh, it’s okay PJ, it’s okay, nothing’s wrong,” Laci said, trying to quiet the baby down.

“There’s a lot wrong, but oh fucking well!”  JT snapped as he threw his hands up.  “Justin let’s get the hell away from here!”

“If that’s the path you want to take Justin, do that, but you promised me,” Laci said as she pointed her finger in Justin’s face.  “You promised to take care of me and that includes my child, your son!”

“I didn’t promise you anything!  You’re fucking crazy!”  Justin snapped as he started the jeep, putting it in gear and then pulling out of the parking space as Laci stood there, watching as she quickly pulled a pen and a piece of paper from her pocket and wrote down the license plate to the jeep.

“Dang, that was crucial,” Chad stated as JT turned and glared at him.  “Sorry, I’ll be quiet.”

“Thank you,” JT said as he sniffled as he looked out the window.  “Olay boys, did you get enough to eat tonight?”

“I got enough Daddy,” Caleb replied as they rode in silence back to the house.

Later That Evening – North Beverly Park – The Home of JT and Justin Poole-Tanner – The Backyard

Josh’s POV

Since getting back here to the house, I’ve been sitting out in the backyard, replaying the events of what happened at the restaurant.  In a way, all of it was a big rush, but that rush also scared the hell out of me.  We almost got mobbed by JT and Justin’s fans and it sort of made me feel like I was part of that world with them.  When things started, I didn’t think anything of it, not until the teenage boy came over to the checkout while Justin was paying and asked me for my autograph.  When I told him I wasn’t a celebrity, he looked at me like I was crazy and still held up his book for me to sign.  So, not to disappoint him, I signed his book.  One day he’s going to go through the book and wonder who in the world is Joshua Raymond.

Chad Faulk, my brother’s cute friend is nice and seems to have a pleasant attitude.  I think he’s a guy I would very much like to get to know better.  When we got back here to the house, we talked for a few minutes before he left to take his nephew home.  To say the least, he was very livid about the things that happened earlier.  He didn’t like what happened with that woman that approached Justin and he thinks there’s probably going to be some news about that on the TV soon.  With all the things she said, I agree with him.  Before he left me, we exchanged numbers… Yeah, I need to get a new cell phone and get a local number for out here… so we can hang out some time.  I think hanging out with him, without a kid around would be cool.  Maybe he can help me sort out some of the feelings I have in my head.

Changing gears, I just hope things are okay with my brother and Justin.  With all that went down in that parking lot at the restaurant with that woman, I feel sorry for Justin.  The ride home from there was totally silent.  No one said a word, not even Caleb and most of the time, he’s very talkative.  With all that happened, I guess he could feel that it wasn’t the time for talking.  She said her name is Laci and that Justin promised to take care of her—her and her child.  I wonder, how old is the child?  The baby didn’t look like a newborn, so it couldn’t have been anytime recent, that this happened, was it?  Being that I was at the wedding, they’ve been married for about three months now.  I don’t know how long they dated before they got married, but I don’t think Justin is one to cheat, is he?

“Dang, it’s almost eleven,” I said, sighing as I got up from the lounge chair.  “I need to be getting outside.  I have some things to take care of in the morning.”

One of the things I’m going to take care of in the morning is what to do about Chad Faulk.  How am I going to get to know him better, without it seeming like I’m trying to get him into bed?  Maybe I should ask bro what to do, then again, he might not be in the mood for talking with all that happened tonight.  I just hope that crap with that woman doesn’t cause a big problem between him and Justin.

Inside – JT and Justin’s Bedroom

“So, how is Caleb, is he still asleep?”  JT asked as Justin walked into the room.

“Yeah, he’s still asleep,” Justin replied as he kicked off his slippers and then climbed into bed, huddling close to JT and then kissing his lips as JT turned his head.  “The little guy was all tuckered out after his evening of adventure.  Once he was out of the tub, he put on his jammies and he was out like a light before I even started to read to him.”

“Well, he had a full evening,” JT spoke as he looked up at the ceiling.

“Baby, are you okay?”  Justin asked, caressing JT’s face.

“I’m fine Justin, why do you ask?”  JT asked, still not turning to look at Justin.

“I’m asking because you’re not looking at me,” Justin answered with a frown on his face.  “Baby, the matter isn’t just going to go away because we’re not talking about it.”

“Justin, a woman approached us and said she has your baby,” JT said, sounding as if he were crying.

“I know baby, but as I said earlier, I don’t have any kids with that woman or any other woman,” Justin stated as he tried to get JT to look at him.  “The only child I have is the one I just went to go check on and that’s the child I have with my husband.”

“Why Justin?  Why did she come there and single you out like that?  Do you know that woman?  Is she one of your past deranged hook-ups?”  JT asked as Justin sighed.

“Baby,” Justin said as JT shook his head and then sniffled.

“It doesn’t matter,” JT said as he sat up in the bed.  “It doesn’t matter because you are the…”

“I’m the what?  I’m the one that slept with tons and tons of women and couldn’t keep up with who they were, is that what you’re thinking?”  Justin asked as he sat up and looked at JT.  “Is that what you think of me John?”

“N—no, I don’t think that at all,” JT replied as he turned and looked at Justin with a frown on his face.  “I—I never thought anything of the sort.”

“Then why would you think that I would lay down with some woman I don’t’ even know and produce a child with her?  Do you really think I’m that shallow and dirty to just father a child with someone and then leave them?  I’m not that type of guy and I thought you knew that about me.”

“I—I do know that about you Justin, but…” JT said as Justin shook his head.

“There’s no ‘but’ about it John,” Justin said as he looked at JT with a hurt look on his face.  “We’ve known each other for a very long time and do you really think I would just sleep with a woman, unprotected and father a child with her?  Do you believe that John?”

“Justin please,” JT said as Justin shook his head and then got out of the bed.

“No John, I want you to answer me damn it,” Justin spoke as the tears streamed down his face.

“I don’t know how to answer that question Justin,” JT stated as he got out of bed and then walked around to where Justin stood, leaning against the wall as he took both of his hands.  “I know you as well as you know me, but had you asked me those questions about myself…”

“These are two different situations and you know it baby,” Justin said as he sniffled.  “You were taken advantage of by a lunatic and…”

“Yes, I was taken advantage of by a lunatic and because of her actions, there’s a little boy right down the hall,” JT stated as he looked Justin in the face.  “So, what I know to be true about you is null and void when it comes to the actions of other people, especially some crazy woman out there in the world.  There are crazy people out there in the world and what I could possibly think they’ll do is way up there in the air.  I never, in a million years would’ve thought that Heather would’ve done what she did, but guess what, she did it.  So, when all of that crap spewed out of that woman’s mouth about you being her baby’s father and that you promised to take care of her…”

“It reminded you of how things went down between you and Heather,” Justin stated as JT nodded his head as he sighed and then pulled Justin close and wrapped his arms around him, hugging him tight.

“I assure you baby, one crazy lunatic is enough in our lives,” Justin stated as he looked JT in the face.  “I don’t have a child with that woman.”

“Remember, I said that too,” JT stated as he shook his head and then sighed.

“Yes, you did,” Justin replied as he looked down.

“Why don’t we just get to bed… We both have things to do in the morning and this is something that will have to be dealt with at a later time.  There’s nothing we can really do about it tonight.”

“No, there’s nothing we can do about anything tonight,” Justin replied as he and JT walked back over to the bed and got into it.

“Justin, besides this baby drama, are you okay?”  JT asked.

“Yeah, why do you ask?”  Justin asked as he looked at JT strangely.

“I—I saw the way you looked at Chad earlier this evening while we were on our way back here.  What was up with that?”  JT asked as Justin sighed.

“What’s up with him baby?  Did—did you two have a thing together or something?”  Justin asked as JT snickered and then shook his head.

“No, we never had a thing,” JT replied as he tilted his head to the side, watching Justin.  “Come on, don’t tell me you’re jealous of my friendship with Chad.”

“I’m not jealous of your friendship with him, I—I just think there’s something wrong in the head with him,” Justin stated as JT shook his head.

“You think something is wrong like what?”  JT asked.

“It seems like he doesn’t know how to control his tongue at times, like there’s no filter on what he says,” Justin stated as JT laughed.  “Why are you laughing baby?”

“In that case, the same could be said about Joey, Chris, Lance and Josh,” JT stated as Justin sighed.

“Come on baby, you know what I mean,” Justin stated as he lay his head on his pillow.  “All evening, while we were out, it seemed all he could do was make unnecessary comments and all.  Everything you said, he—he would follow up with something strange or—or negative.”

“Honey, that’s just Chad,” JT stated as he leaned in and kissed Justin’s lips.  “Chad had—has some issues, but I’m not going to let his issues cause a problem for us and you shouldn’t either.  Chad’s issues are his own and his alone.”

“I know that baby, but I—I don’t know…” Justin said as JT kissed his lips again.

“So, our little boy called you Papa tonight,” JT stated, changing the subject as Justin smiled.  “How did that come about?”

“I don’t know,” Justin replied as he shrugged his shoulders.  “It was nice, I like it.  It seems like I’m finally a bigger part of his life now.”

“Justin,” JT said as Justin shook his head and then leaned up and kissed his lips.  “You are a part of his life, you’re…”

“I know I’m a part of his life, but—but it felt more like I was just the guy that’s married to his dad and nothing more than that,” Justin explained as JT smiled weakly and then sighed.

“You’re not just some guy that’s married to his dad,” JT stated with a frown as he shifted in the bed.

“But that’s how it felt before tonight,” Justin stated as he moved around on the bed.  “I—I never knew how to act with him.  I didn’t know what role he or you wanted me to take, being that’s something neither of us really talked about.”

“There isn’t a certain kind of way you have to act Justin,” JT stated as he lay back on his pillow as Justin moved in close to him.  “All you have to do is be you.”

“Regardless of all of that baby, it was nice hearing him call me Papa tonight, that warmed my heart over,” Justin stated with a smile.

“You don’t mind him calling you Papa,” JT said as Justin shook his head and then kissed his lips.

“He can call me Papa all he wants to, but I love it more when you call me Big Papa,” Justin stated as he moved on top of JT and then started grinding his crotch into JT’s.

“Someone’s being naughty,” JT stated as they kissed again.  “I’m just glad you two get along so well.”

“We do, that’s probably because I enjoy hanging around with my younger brothers and my cousins,” Justin stated as JT shook his head.

“No, it’s probably due in part to you acting like him at times,” JT stated, giggling as Justin pouted.

“Come on baby,” Justin said as JT laughed more.

“What do you expect me to say baby?”  JT asked as Justin started tickling him.  “Stop it, you’re going to make me piss the bed.”

“Okay, I’ll stop,” Justin said, leaning in and kissing JT’s lips again.

“You have to take into consideration that you two play video games together, you guys run around the house and the backyard, playing like crazy and you both have similar attitudes in the morning, especially when it comes to cereal,” JT explained as Justin looked into his eyes.

“When we’re playing, you should join us sometime; you don’t know what you’re really missing baby,” Justin said as he lay his head in the space between JT’s neck and shoulder, kissing his neck.  “It helps me burn off some excess energy and I have fun at the same time.  We connect.”

“Maybe sometimes, but not always,” JT stated as he rubbed Justin’s back.  “I’m not going to make that an all the time occurrence.”

“It’ll keep you feeling young baby,” Justin stated as JT laughed as the two of them settled down in the bed.  “I love you baby.”

“I love you,” JT responded as he turned off the beside lamp, getting comfortable in bed.

To Be Continued…