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Chapter Fourteen

I'll be the first to admit I couldn't stand the amount of jealousy I felt. Leigh completely accepted Howie the way he was, stuck in my body and all, but Ro wouldn't even look at me. She was so freaked out by the whole thing. I mean I can't really blame her - she was sympathetic, she just wasn't as tolerant of the mess.

I had to put up with two weeks of me and Howie trying to figure out how to switch it back while sleeping on the sofa because it weirded her out to be sleeping next to what looked like Howie.

Finally, mercifully, it came time to go on tour.

"Please figure this out Monkee," a teary-eyed Rochelle bade me farewell at our door, "Please come back yourself... I miss you," she whispered, "I want us to have babies together, please."

"Trust me," I muttered, "I'm trying."

In the two weeks time, Howie and I had tried a crapton of stuff. The most embarassing one to admit was when we backed up against opposite walls and ran into each other, hoping the impact would make the switch-a-roo occurr. We'd spent two hours at the ER while waiting to get my wrist examined for a nasty sprain.

Nothing worked.

Brian's car was already parked in Nick's driveway by the time we got to his house in Beverly Hills. Howie sighed as I parked behind Brian's big blue SUV and turned off my truck. "Great," he muttered.

"What?" I asked.

Both of us were on edge, our nerves frayed from the stress of the last couple weeks. Nothing had gone smoothly, an a general air of awkward hang hung over everyone except James, who only wanted to play with Howie. I'd made him take my piercings out while he was playing with James and I had the sinking suspicion that I was going to have to re-pierce everything when I got back in my own body.

"We're still each other," he snapped, "We have to do a whole stinkin' tour like this."

"What?" I said, "Is it not so easy being me as you thought it was?"

Howie glowered, "It's still easier than being me," he snapped.

I turned away. Sorry, the guy has some financial bullshit, yeah, but it's not like its the end of the world. What his biggest problem was was getting his pride-filled head out of his own ass. He probably couldn't. His ego was too big. It got lodged in his rectum.

I got out of the truck and slammed the door and grabbed a suitcase out of the back of the truck's bed and started up the walk to Nick's door.

"Are we going to tell them?" Howie asked, appearing at my side a moment later with another suitcase. He nodded at the house.

"Why? So they can act as fucky as our wives did all tour?" I shot back, "I can just picture the fun Nick would have with this shit."

"Nicky would understand," Howie said.

I snorted, "You clearly don't know Nick like I know Nick. Brian is the one that would understand."

"Brian would freak out."

I rolled my eyes, "Whatever."

"Well if you think you know Nick better than I do, who's to say I don't know Brian better than you do?" Howie demanded.

"Because," I snapped, "He's Brian - he has exactly one dimension."

Howie laughed, "Oh J, J, J... Seriously, c'mon."

"Yeah? Well, get ready," I snapped, "Cos you're about to find out a lot more about Nick's sex life with Becky-the-Almighty than you ever wanted to know."

Howie looked a bit terrified at this statement. "What do you mean?" he asked as I rang the door bell, "He tells you like stuff?" he stammered.

I smiled. "That's for me to know, and you to find out, I suppose, 'ey AJ?" I said pointedly as the door opened and Nick's blonde head peeked around the jamb.

"FELLASSSS!!!!!" he cried, whipping the door opened. "C'mon yall! This is great! I'm just firing up the B-B-Q out back... Becky's makin' egg salad. I'm so friggin' ready to pound that shit." He grinned.

I winked at Howie and stepped past Nick.

"Hey, J?" I heard Nick whisper, "We gotta talk - oh dude, wait til you hear this..."

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

"Wait," I said as Nick took my arm. "I think maybe Howie wants to hear this instead."

Nick rolled his eyes. "Howie doesn't care about my liiii-iiifeee," he sang. "Howie cares about..." he paused and looked at J. "What do you care about?"

"Tacos," AJ said. "And money."


"Yeah, money!" Nick said happily. "C'mon."

I had no choice. Nick lead me through his house. I couldn't help but notice his pants were practically falling off his ass. Couldn't the boy buy pants that fit?

The house looked a lot different from when Nick lived there solo. There were a lot more womanly touches. Gone were the huge posters of half-naked Budweiser girls. In their place were admittedly cute pictures of Nick and Becky, ala photo kiosk.

Once we headed downstairs, I realized where the man cave had moved too. A big busty brunette leaning over a car smiled at me over Nick's pool table.

"Okay," Nick said. "I've so gotta tell you. This whole engaged thing rocks. Becky's on fire. I don't know what I'm gonna do on tour. It's like every night y'know?"

"That's good," I said. I picked up the black eight ball and rolled it in my palm.

"I know you're going to love this story," Nick continued, not noticing my disinterest. He jumped up and sat on the edge of the pool table. He grabbed a pool cue and stuck it between his legs, making motions that I so didn't want to see.

"What story?"

"Okay, so I went to visit Beckers at the hospital, right? Well she was on duty for like a million hours and I was missing her so I brought her dinner."

Here, Nick gave me a wink. "Dessert ended up in one of the medicine closets," he said. "We were going at it, y'know and the boxes were shaking--" Nick wiggled his fingers. "Anyhow, this whole box spills over and it wasn't sealed properly. I had my mouth open and, well, I ended up swallowing a couple pills."


Nick giggled. "They were blue happy pills. Three days later, Becky used all her sick days up and my balls were so swollen I felt like they were dragging on the ground. It. Was. Epic."

I blanched. Nick was the king of horrible mental pictures.

"I'm sure you won't do that again," I said.

Nick frowned. "What? Are you nuts? Of course I would!"

I smacked my forehead. Nick poked me in the shoulder with the cue stick. "Hey, you, me, and Howie are sharing a bus again. What can we do to How while he's sleeping this time. Huh? Huh?"

I lowered my hand. "What do you mean, what can we do to D while he's sleeping?"

Nick looked confused. "We always do something! Remember the time when we put the coconut bra on him? Or the time--"

I stopped listening after he started to talk about edible body glitter. I needed to get back upstairs. I was going to strangle my own neck, but it would be worth it to see AJ squirm. "Hey, J, is something wrong?"

"Wrong?" I asked absently. "Not at all."

Nick hummed. "Let's go. I want some barbecue. And some egg salad. And I don't mean like the yellow clumpy stuff, yanno? I mean like a helping of Becky. Or two helping. Hell, forget the barbecue. Can you just keep everyone distracted for an hour?"

Nick wouldn't shut up. My head was already hurting. He always left me alone. With AJ he was like a mosquito. Considering AJ was a gnat, they made a good pair.

A pair I so wanted to swat.

Unknown McLean Fact #14: Even though Nick's messy, AJ's messier. One time I put yellow condemned tape all around his bunk. So what did he do? He took it all down and made it into a wearable Borat suit. Sometimes no matter how hard you try, J just does not get the message.