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~ 14 ~


I got such a little amount of sleep that I’m pretty sure it was dreamless. I woke to the smell of coffee brewing in the room and opened my eyes to Kevin stepping over me to get to the table. “Morning little man, did you sleep okay?” He asked, taking one more step over his cousin. “Any dreams?”

I sat up and wiped some drool off of my mouth, yuck. “I don’t think I dreamed. What time is it?”

“About 8.”

“I just fell asleep about two hours ago.”

He nodded at me. “If you want the bed, feel free to take it. I’m awake now.” He motioned for me to move to the bed which I thought about for a second before declining.

“Nah, I’m not really all that tired.” I stood up and looked down at my best friend who had the goofiest expression on his face. I couldn’t help but smile at him. He had his arms wrapped around the pillow as if it was a woman and had this odd smirk going on. “Wonder what he’s dreaming about.” I said as I slowly stepped over Brian and joined Kevin at the table.

“I’m not sure I want to know, are you hungry?”

I felt my stomach as if that would be able to properly answer the question. “Not really. I know I should be though.”

“Once everyone wakes up, maybe two of us can make a breakfast run or hell, we could always order room service. I mean why not, right?”

I shrugged, “Yeah, I guess that would work although so would a nice, greasy McDonald’s biscuit or seven.”

He laughed at me as he took a sip of his coffee, “God, this stuff is gross!”

“Do we have a performance today?” I asked him.

“Yup, just a short one right in the lobby of this hotel. It’s only three songs and then we’re done!”

“What time does that happen?”

He thought about it for a second, “Noon which is why I think it might be a good idea for you to grab a quick nap. Besides, I’d rather you sleep when we’re all awake anyway.”

I laughed at him. “So this way you can stop me from sleep walking to my death?”

“Yeah.” He smiled at me, “That’s exactly why.”

I glanced over at the bed and decided to take him up on the offer. “Maybe I will sleep for a little bit.”

“I’ll wake you up in plenty of time. Go rest buddy.”

I stepped over Brian once again and headed for the bed.


“Nicky, wake up.” I swear I heard only seconds after I closed my eyes. I bat at the sound of my name and heard a faint, “Ow! Crap! Nick wake up.” Ha! I knew I’d gotten him. I opened my eyes to Howie who was rubbing at his nose. “Next time you do it!” He said to AJ as they all sat and laughed.

“Sorry D, you lost the bet fair and square.”

“What time is it?” I asked, trying to rub the sleep out of my eyes.

“Almost eleven, we ordered you some breakfast. Any dreams?” Kevin asked again. I could tell this was going to be his new question for me, replacing “did you go to the bathroom because it’s going to be a long trip and we’re not going to stop just because of you” and “did you remember to get everything out of the room because once we’re gone, we aren’t coming back just because you were irresponsible and didn’t think to double check your stuff.” Wow, Kevin really is like a grandpa, an old, annoying, whiny, complaining grandpa.

“No dreams.” Thank God.

I made my way over to the table where a stack of pancakes and bacon sat there waiting for me with a huge glass of chocolate milk. “Wow, good job with the ordering.” I said to Kevin, more than pleased. “Where’s Brian?”

“He’s taking a shower.”

I nodded and quickly gobbled up my food knowing that I still needed to take a shower too. “Did Max call you back yet?”


I was disappointed but not surprised. I was really hoping he’d be here first thing this morning with some kind of news for me. Maybe after our concert, he’d be here waiting. I finished my breakfast in record time and ran into the bathroom just as Brian was coming out.

When I got out of the shower, I noticed a profound quiet in the room. I promised myself I wouldn’t freak out about it. Maybe they were all just sitting there trying to get ready for our performance. I know they wouldn’t have left me by myself, not after everything we just found out. I put my clothes on and anxiously left the bathroom.

“Hey guys you’re all being really quiet!” I said but stopped in my tracks when I noticed that I was in fact all alone.

In a panic, I walked over to the adjoining room door which was closed and tried to open it. It was locked from the other side, so I knocked, “Guys?” I asked in a loud voice but not quite screaming level. There was still no answer. “This isn’t funny guys!” I said to the empty room. I don’t know what I was expecting. Maybe I wanted them to come out of hiding spots like we were playing Hide and Seek or something.

“Shit,” was all I could think to say.

Then it occurred to me that maybe I was running late and they had already left to go downstairs. I looked at the clock and was a little relieved to see it was about 11:45. I could see management making them go without me, even though it was weird that they wouldn’t even leave me a note. A whole new set of fears hit me then when I realized I’d have to make it all the way down to the lobby alone. “Shit.”

I finished getting ready, which consisted of me throwing some gel in my still wet hair and glopping on some deodorant. I usually left that part out until Howie and I had a discussion about good smells versus bad smells, him being the good and me being the bad.

As I walked down the hallway, I heard muffled voices coming from Brian and AJ’s room. I knew they were in there! I knocked on the door again. “Guys, let me in!”

When the door opened, it was my father standing there. “Oh my God!” I said with a great amount of relief in my voice as I moved to hug him. “Dad, thank God you’re okay. I have been so worried about you!”

“Not now Nickolas! I told you daddy can’t be interrupted. Go and play.” He pushed me away from him and I was confused. That’s when I saw Max standing there next to him. He looked different, a lot younger than before. His hair was long enough to wear pushed back in a ponytail and his body was more muscular. He looked at me but didn’t say anything. “We need to take care of this!” He urged my father who was trying to push me out of the room.

“Go play with Mommy…” He said and closed the door on me.

“There you are baby. I was looking all over for you.” The woman from my dreams said. “I told you, you shouldn’t be running all over the place.”

“I am confused, am I dreaming?” I asked her.

She ignored my question and gathered me into her arms. Okay I guess that was my answer right there. Of course this was a dream. Kevin would NEVER order me pancakes and bacon! How could I have thought this was real for one second?

My father and Max both came out of the room a few seconds later. Both of them had very serious expressions on their faces.

“I asked you to keep him away from here.” My dad said in a very harsh voice to the woman who was holding me and would end up dead later on.

“He snuck away while I was on the phone. I’m sorry.” She said as she bounced me in her arms.

My father’s expression softened when he looked at me. He walked over to the both of us and then gave me a kiss on my cheek. “Be good Andrew and listen to your mommy.” He winked at me and then gave the woman a kiss as well. “I love you.” He said as he turned to leave.

“When will you be back?” The woman asked.

“Once we’re done. Soon, I hope.” He answered.

Max was watching all of this as he kept glancing at his watch. When he saw the goodbyes were finally over he smiled and turned to walk away. I noticed a gun sticking out of his back pocket.

Once they were gone, the lady started humming a lullaby as she walked towards the now ever familiar room. I hadn’t noticed before but I felt him in my hands. It was my pig. We were heading towards this woman’s final scene.

“Where’s my mommy?” I asked her.

“I’m right here sweetheart.” She answered as she kissed my cheek and we entered the room.

I opened my eyes and let out a deep breath. I heard talking all around me as I sat up. Everyone was sitting around the table, including Max. All eyes came to me as I let out a yawn and looked at the clock. It was only 10. “We didn’t mean to wake you Nicky.” Howie said as he took a sip of coffee.

I ignored him and everyone else and walked over to Max, “Do you have any news? Please tell me you do.”

He looked at the guys and then back at me, “You’re not going to like it.”

“Tell me.”

“Last night I went to go check out your therapist’s office and it was ransacked. When I went to grab your file, it was gone.”

“Someone stole my file?”

He nodded and grabbed a piece of toast from the middle of the table. Looks like they did order room service while I was asleep although no trace of pancakes anywhere to be seen. Just toast, muffins and some fruit.

“What does that mean?”

“It means that they’re looking to see if and what you remember. The thing that disturbs me most is the fact that they knew where to look.”

“You think Jane is in on it?” Kevin asked, feeling guilty for having me go to her in the first place. I knew there was something fishy about that woman.

“It’s hard to say. I’m working on that but in the meantime, where’s that bottle of pills you mentioned?” He asked Kevin who stood up and went to the nightstand and pulled out the bottle from the drawer. “I’ll have someone take a look at these. About how many have you taken?” He asked me.

“Not sure, at least half the bottle by now.”

“Well you haven’t died, so that’s a good sign.” Gee, I feel much better now.

“Gentleman I think we need to consider moving you to a new location after your little concert today. If they have his file then they probably know he’s staying here. None of you are safe.” He continued while placing the bottle in his pocket.

“You know, if they do read that file, nothing is really in there. I didn’t say very much.”

“True, but it might be enough for them to worry.”

“Who are them?” I asked once again growing impatient with his vagueness.

“The less you know…”

I wouldn’t let him finish. “I saw you in my dream. You were there the day that woman died, weren’t you?” He looked at me with a stunned expression on his face.

“Did you have a dream?” Guess who that was.

I nodded but continued to talk to Max, “I saw you and my dad talking. You had a gun in your back pocket. Did you kill that woman?”

“No.” He answered very quickly. “And she wasn’t just a woman Nick, she was your mother.”

“What? That’s ridiculous! My mother was Jane Carter, not this woman. I have never even seen this woman before in my life.” As I was saying it though, I didn’t believe it. He could tell and so could everyone else in the room.

He walked closer to me, “You know that’s not true. She’s your real mother.”


He placed a hand on my shoulder in a surprisingly loving way. “I know you have a ton of questions but like I keep telling you, the less you know at this point, the better.”

“Is my dad...?”

“Yes, he’s really your father.” He answered then turned back to everyone, “Look, I know you guys don’t know me from a hole in the wall but trust me. I’m on your side and the last thing I want is for anyone to get hurt. How hard will it be to convince your management to move you to another hotel?” He asked Kevin.

Kevin thought about it for a few seconds, “They’re going to need a good reason.”

“I’ve got that covered.”

“What are you going to do? Please don’t kill anyone!” I pleaded which sounded dumb but considering the circumstances, not totally out of the question.

Max looked aggravated, “I promise I won’t kill anyone, yet.”

“Okay.” Howie answered while everyone else, including me had what the fuck expressions on our faces.

“I’ll see you after your concert. Be safe!” He said as he left the room.

“I still don’t know if I trust him.” Brian admitted and I felt the same way.

“Me too, but what choice do we have?” Kevin answered.

“We could go to the police or tell our families about him.” Howie added.

“I don’t think we should tell our families anything. Max keeps saying how the less we know the better. I think the less they know the better as well.” AJ took that one. I know at first he was bummed that his mom wasn’t around but as more shit was slowly hitting the fan, I think he was more grateful than anything else that she wasn’t around for any of this. I wish I was with her on her cruise and she kind of annoys me. Don’t tell him I said that though, he’ll kick my ass.

“You don’t think these people will go after them, do you?” Brian asked suddenly nervous.

“I hope not.” Kevin answered looking over at me to monitor my mood I guess. “It won’t help to really think about that now. We have to concentrate on this performance and then thankfully we’ll have a day or two to rest, relax and really try to figure things out.” He looked at me again, “Are you okay? I know Max just dropped a major bomb on you.”

I shrugged because honestly, I wasn’t sure how I was. At this point, I didn’t even know if my name was Nick anymore. This was just one more thing to add to the list, that’s all it was.


Our performance went remarkably well considering what the hell was going on in our real lives. Maybe that’s why we did so well. None of us actually wanted to get off the stage and back to reality. We were fine with staying in the moment. Letting the small crowd gathered yell and scream our names as the older people applauded us. One thing I did notice was one of our management team members off to the side talking intently to a few hotel workers.

I had a feeling that Max was behind whatever they were discussing and sure enough as soon as we were done, they brought us into a small room and informed us that we would be changing hotels.

When Kevin asked for the reason, they remained coy and just said, “It was a security issue and not to worry about it. It’s all taken care of.”

They booked us at a smaller hotel completely out of Manhattan and under a bunch of different aliases. The same ones we used when we were in Europe. They already shipped everything over to the new place so we just had to bring ourselves.

We were kind of bummed to see we were no longer in a five star hotel but at least it wasn’t quite a motel either. It was nice. We all were in a suite on the top floor which meant no one would be alone. There were two bedrooms and a living room area connecting them. The Christmas tree and presents were all waiting in the living room along with a note from Lou and the management telling us to enjoy the next two days off. Wow, two full days off.

Once we were all settled, there was a knock on the door so Kevin went and let Max in. “I’m not sure what you did, but whatever it was, it worked.”

Max nodded, “it’s best you don’t know.”

“I’m guessing you’re going to be saying that a lot.”

“I’ll be doing some more checking on the Jane situation and making sure no one followed you here. Again, stay out of site. Take these two days and just relax in here. Watch TV, drink egg nog, rent porn, whatever it is you rock star types do. Just stay in this room!” He then turned to me, “I promise you, if I hear anything about or from your dad, I’ll let you know. If you have any more memories, you need to let me know. Your friend over there has my number.”

I nodded at him but followed him out the door.

“What part of stay inside was not clear enough for you?” He asked turning towards me with a stern look on his face.

“What was her name?” He just stood there so I continued, “I know the less I know the better, but I think I at least deserve to know what my mother’s real name was.”

His look softened slightly, “Nicole.” He said as he smiled at me and walked away.

“Nicole…I like that.” I said out loud, walking back into the room and locking the door.

Chapter End Notes:
Just to let you know, this week I am starting school again. I'm still a few chapters ahead of myself but this week is the first week all summer that I did not get a chapter written and I am afriad that's going to happen more often now. So, i'm going to pick a day of the week to be my new update day. I think i'm going to pick Mondays so a week from Monday i'll post chapter 15. Anyway, i'll stop babbling. thanks in advance for your feedback. Hopefully lol whether it be good or bad. lol