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Chapter Five

June 20, 2014

The first thing my body registers is the large hand sliding up my leg. It takes a second for my brain to organize the sequence of events from the previous day and I at first think that I must have dreamed my return trip. Perhaps I am still in bed with Brian. This thought makes me smile.

I open my eyes and see my phone laying on the nightstand. It’s the newest iPhone and I realize that I am back in the present. I also realize that the hand on my leg can’t be Brian’s. If it is mot Brian's then I have a home invader. A home invader that is about ready to rape my passed out body. My reflexes kick in. My mouth opens.

I scream.

The hand flies away. “COURT!”

The intruder knows my name. The voice sounds vaguely familiar but I can’t place it. I tear at the comforter. The door to the bedroom, a bedroom that isn’t mine, flies open. I am sure I have gone insane. Brian is standing in the doorway, except it isn’t quite Brian. He’s much too young. Younger than the Brian I left last night.


Now I know I am insane. My shoulder hits the floor hard as I’m still jumbled up in sheets. I scramble to my feet breathing hard.

“Court, what’s wrong?”

I have trouble looking away from the concerned looking Brian in the doorway, but I do.

I wish I didn’t.

Nick Carter is looking at me. His chest is bare, his hair's a mess like someone has spent a whole night tugging it, and he is sitting up looking extremely confused, but I’m sure not as confused as I am. He reaches his large ape-like hand out towards me. Seriously, he has giant hands.

“Calm down. Bad dream?” He looks away from me. He looks at young Brian.

“Go get her something to drink, Ben.”

Brian turns and disappears.

I don't answer Nick. Instead, I immediately begin to look for my compact. I pick up a pillow and shake it. I get to my knees and crawl halfway under the bed that is bigger than my entire studio apartment. In an attempt of desperation I grab my phone and check for the date, sure that I am being punk'd.

June 20, 2014.

"Court, what the hell is wrong with you?"

I glance at him just in time to see him stand up, yanking a pair of boxers on. He had been naked. I can feel clothing on my own body and know that I am not quite so free spirited in my sleep, yet I have no time to check exactly what that clothing might entail. I turn back to my phone, dialing quickly.

"Who are you calling?"

I do not answer. Instead, I listen to the stomach plummeting sound of the phone company telling me a number does not exist.

Kal's number.

Things have gone horribly wrong.

"Here's some water, mom."

Brian walks in holding a pink wine glass almost overflowing with ice water. He looks scared.

"Brian," I say, desperate to have something, anything in this alternate universe seem right.

"Dad?" Brian says. "What about dad?"

"Court, it's Ben. Your son?"

And again I am drowning.

"I'm going to call a doctor," Nick continued. I turn towards him.


He stops, but I see him eyeing his own nightstand. Brian or Ben or whoever the Brian in the doorway is looks back and forth between me and Nick as if searching for guidance. Nick finally makes the call.

"Give us a minute," he assures him. It's enough to make the boy disappear, but not before giving me another concerned look, inching over, and setting the glass of water down. Only then does he tear out of the room.

"Court, you look like you're going to pass out. Drink some water."

I want to argue with him, but my throat is parched. I grab the glass and take a long drink, but it doesn't fix the fact that everything is very wrong.

"Talk to me."

Unlike almost every other woman on this planet, Nick has never made me so deliriously turned on that I think I might implode. Certain tidbits of information like the fact he isn't a habitual teeth brusher or that he sometimes forgets to wash his hands after going to the bathroom are pretty big turnoffs for me. Other fans I know think it's a badge of honor to get the Nick plague, but not me. I can't for the life of me think of any reason why I would be in the same bed as him or why he would spend his mornings feeling me up instead of his wife. This is the only question I can think to ask of him.

"Where's Lauren? Why are you here with me?"

Nick's eyes widen and I see in them a look of pure disbelief and something akin to frustration. He doesn't answer immediately but when he does, I am no closer to the truth.

"You hit your head harder than I thought," he says gently as if I am a victim of a horrible accident or someone with a terminal disease.


"Yesterday you missed a step getting down to the studio and hit your head pretty hard. You said you were okay but...I think you have amnesia. We've got to get you to the doctor."

He reaches for the phone again.

"Step!" I cry. "I don't have amnesia! All I want to know is why you aren't with your wife! Just answer me that one question." My anger is rising. All I want is for him to answer me.

"Court," Nick shakes his head as if I'm asking him the impossible.

"You are my wife."
Chapter End Notes:

I won't have time to post the morning update tomorrow so I'm posting tonight. Expect the next update by Wednesday night at the latest!