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Story Notes:
All portions of this story from AJ's POV were written by Pengi, all portions of this story from Howies POV were written by evergreenwriter83.
Chapter One

"Can you believe it's been a whole year?" Kevin said, shoving pork lo mein into his mouth with chopsticks.

Brian had his chopsticks shoved up his ginormous nostrils and was making google-eyes at Nick, who was Kevin's focal point and therefore could not laugh. Howie rolled his eyes. I started looking for my chopsticks to join in.

When I found them, Howie grabbed them from my hand and put them down on the otherside of his plate.

"One year ago today, Nick was braindead... and today..."

"He still is," I belched.

I got the Evil Brow from Kevin, a smirk from Brian and a "nuuh uhhhhhhhhh" from Nick.

"Today," Kevin continued, as though I hadn't interrupted him, "We have him here, healthy, strong, and well." He still talked slower than cold molasses trying to go up hill. Seriously, spill the beans, Kev.

Speaking of beans. I stretched across Howie, trying to get the spring rolls.

Don't ask me how that relates to beans, I don't really know.

Nick beamed as his girlfriend - Nurse Busty aka Becky - held up a crab ragoon to his mouth. "You know I love those racoons, baby," he muttered, nuzzling noses with her.

I'm pretty sure I was about to throw up. I pointed down my throat and made gagging noises in Howie direction to indicate this. "Will you grow up?" Howie demanded.

Grow up? Please - that was for... well, grown ups.

Kev picked up his microscopic thimble of tea and held it up. Brian's chopsticks fell out of his nose and hit the soup bowl in front of him. I called it Lick Balls Soup - that's what it tasted like. Not that I know what balls taste like. But if I did, I bet it would taste like that soup. Brian grinned sheepishly as Kevin eyeballed him suspiciously.

Nick afforded the opportunity to snicker and Nurse Busty rubbed the back of his neck as he giggled - well aimed so his eyeballs and nose were going down her boobs.

"I wanna giggle," I said. I looked at Howie. "Grow boobs so I can giggle in your cleavage."

Howie looked at me like I was mental.

I waved him off. Whatever.

Kevin cleared his throat and Becky scrambled to grab her tiny teacup, mashing her boobs further into Nick's face. He was probably hard enough that if he pulled his pants down his jimmyjoejohnso n could've held up that end of the table. I looked at Howie and nodded at them. Howie again rolled his eyes.

Dude what the hell?

"To Nick, our miracle member," Kevin said.

I almost choked at the words miracle member.

Brian knocked over his knee and grabbed some napkins. Nick grinned and held up his own tea, clinked it with Becky's, said, "To me! Yay!" and they twined hands and sipped each other's cups.

I looked at Howie. He was already guzzling his margarita.

I picked up my diet coke and held it up in the air and drank it, too late really for the toast, but not lame enough to just not toast - unlike Brian, who was trying to sop up the tea he spilled all over his pants. He looked like he peed himself. I turned to point that out to Howie, but Howie was already looking unamused at me, so I didn't say anything.

Instead I started entertaining myself by flicking grains of rice at Nick's ear. He waved a hand at his ear lobe each time, like there was a gnat that was aggrevating him, unaware that it was really pork fried rice, being pinged across the table top...

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

As Brian continued to dab at his spill, I glanced over at AJ. He was extremely jumpy tonight. He was always mouthy and irrational, but something about him seemed off.

I was extremely suspicious.

Even though I was on AJ alert, I was enjoying our meal. It was the first time in over six years that the five of us (and Rebekah) had gotten together for dinner. Kev had just finished another movie. We were headed out on tour again in mere days.

"A-hem. A-hem."

Nick bounced his knuckles against the table and stood up.

"I want to thank all of you for being here to celebrate this special day. I can't imagine a world without me."

"You wouldn't be around to imagine," AJ whispered under his breath. I jabbed him; he snickered. Bri tossed his napkin, giving up on the wetspot.

"Before we have dessert, I have something special I need to do."

His voice was shaking. I glanced around the table and met Kev's eye. Even though he didn't say a word, I could tell what he was thinking.

Is he REALLY going to do this?

Becky smiled up at Nick. He turned to her. He did a backwards hand stretch; Bri hurriedly put a box in his palm.

"Becky, this past year has been the best year of my life. I truly believe I survived because God wanted me to be with you."

"Nick..." Becky whispered softly. Nick wiped his forehead with his free hand.

"That's why, tonight..."

"Sweet chizz, is he doing what I think he's doing?" AJ said. Kev and I gave him a dirty look. He slumped down and played with his own wedding band.

"Rebekah Lynn Wilson will you marry me?"

Nick quickly swung the box around and sank to his knee. Becky's eyes widened. She covered her mouth.

A full minute passed. It was like the scene was frozen. Becky looked like she was going to pass out; Nick looked like he was going to pee his pants.

"Well?" he croaked.

"What?" Becky asked.

"They're a match made in heaven," AJ whispered.

"Will you marry me?" Nick repeated. Becky quickly nodded.



The second yes came from Brian. He jumped up and hugged Nick before he could even get the ring on Becky's finger.

"You're the LAST one!" he squealed.

"Bri, let him get the ring on!" I called out.

It was a sweet scene and one I never thought I would see. Nick slipped the ring on and they began to make out right at the table. AJ wolf whistled.

God, I missed Leigh. I kept reminding myself it was only a couple more days, but it was still hard.

While I was thinking about my beautiful wife, Kev was making a toast that no one was listening to, Brian was on his phone most likely chirping the good news, and AJ had disappeared from the table.

I'm not the curious type, but I felt the need to discover AJ's whereabouts.

"Congratulations Nick," I said. He didn't hear me; his hands were down the back of Becky's jeans. "Excuse me a moment."

I scooted back in my chair, took one last sip from my cup and headed in the direction of the bathroom.

With any luck, all I would find was one very tattoo'ed man standing sentry at a urinal humming to himself.

Why humming?

Unknown McLean Fact #1: AJ has to hum while he pees.