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“Nick if this goes sour, I'm going to ask you about the Lakers.” Brian had pulled Nick aside before they entered the club.

“Brian we haven't even gone inside yet.” Nick held in the chuckle he could feel attempting to escape. His friend's eyes darted back and forth, a sure sign of his nervousness. “You will be fine Brian,”

“I know I am going to sound like a broken record, but I feel guilty.” Brian attempted to start walking in the other direction, Nick grabbed his arm and pulled him back towards the building and inside.

“Think of it as meeting a fan at some event if that will help you get the courage to sit down with her.” Nick could see Brian's face relax more before he nodded. He must have taken the advice as he walked with his usual demeanor over to the table where Stephanie and a couple of girls sat waiting for them.

Nick moved to the table and watched as Brian said 'hello' and introduced himself to the other two girls sitting at the table. Nick nodded and smiled to the girls and sat down, he barely heard the names Brianna and Melanie before he took his seat and started looking around for a server so he could order a drink.

After the drinks were ordered, Nick tried to join in the conversation Stephanie and Brian were having but the pounding music was making it hard to hear what was being said. They appeared to be enjoying themselves as they continued to move closer and leaned into each other to converse. Nick smiled at his friend, happy that he was having a good time.

“So Nick” One of the girls, possibly Brianna, spoke up. “I see you have a timer. How long do you have until your clock zeros out?”

Nick glanced down at his wrist and pulled his jacket down to ensure it covered. “I don't like to think about it, it doesn't rule my life.” He lied.

Brianna turned to the other girl and started chatting about their timers. Apparently, Melanie just got her timer implanted earlier that day and her timer only had a few short months until she met her one, Brianna was excited that she had less then a week left. Relieved when his drink arrived, Nick immediately ordered another and quickly downed his first. The night was set to be a long one.


Nick rubbed his eyes, his head pounding only slightly still from the night before. The slightly cool summer day was a unusual but pleasant as he sat outside finishing his lunch. Brian and Stephanie had thoroughly enjoyed themselves the night before and even made a date to have dinner over the weekend. Before Nick left, Brian pulled him aside and reminded him of his promise. He was not looking forward to fulfilling his promise, but he promised and after years of broken promises, he wanted to be stick with them

“Can I get you anything else?” the waitress asked him. Nick looked up and for the first time realized it was the same server, Trina, that waited on him the last time he was here with AJ and his fling of the moment.

He looked at Trina, she was fairly attractive, slight build, dressed in sleeveless shirt and jeans with her copper brown hair pulled back in a messy ponytail.

“So...?” She questioned again.

“Sorry about that.” Nick replied. “I am done, but I have another question.” He watched as she picked up his plate and waited for him to continue.

“I was wondering what time you get off of work.” He spoke quickly and then chugged the remainder of his water. 'Smooth Carter.' He admonished himself.

“I just started my shift actually, I work a double through dinner.” She replied filling his water glass. “My shift ends at ten tonight.” She shrugged.

“Want to grab a drink after you finish? My treat.” He smiled, hoping it didn't look forced.

“Sure, sounds nice.” She smiled. “Just don't tell my co-workers, technically I am not supposed to date the customers.” She pulled his check out of her apron and placed it on the table. “Meet me in front of the restaurant around ten and you can choose the place.”

Nick watched her as she walked away, relieved that the hard part was over. He glanced at his watch, only nine more hours until he needed to be back to pick Trina up. Nick thew down his money to pay the bill, ensuring a decent tip and made his way to his car.

“Wait,” He said to himself as he got in. “She doesn't even know my name, why did she agree to this?” Nick slapped his head before turning his car on.

He returned that evening with fifteen minutes to spare. He sat outside the restaurant and waited. He didn't wait long for her to run out of the restaurant and look around. He got out of his car and waved to her, opening the passenger side door for her. “Hi,” he stuttered when she approached him. “Are you ready to go?”

“Sure” She said looking around before she got in his car.

They drove in silence and were quiet until after they sat at their table and ordered their drinks.

“So, I really gotta know, what made you go out with me?” Nick asked.

Trina looked around, she was still clutching her purse wringing the straps. “To be honest, I just did not want to go home after work. My ex-boyfriend was moving his stuff out today and I didn't want to go home with the possibility of him still moving stuff out.” She shrugged. “Sorry to mislead you.”

Nick laughed at her response. “I'm sorry, I'm not laughing at your explanation. I only asked you because I promised a friend I would get over this whole timer thing and try going on date.” He smiled and noticed that Trina relaxed more, enough that she stopped clutching her purse so tightly. “Do you even know my name?”

Trina nodded, “You are that Backstreet Boy that dated Paris.”

Nick dropped his head into his hands. “I will never escape that.” He laughed. “My name is Nick, you can call me that, that Backstreet Boy that dated Paris might get a little long to continue calling me.”

It was Trina's turn to laugh this time. “I'm sorry. So you have a timer?”

Nick cringed at this question. “I do.”

“I do too,” She flashed her wrist at him. “I have like three years left, my ex, he zeroes out tomorrow.”

“Ah” Nick said understanding why she really didn't want to go home.

“There's more to it than that....” she assured him but did not elaborate any further.

Nick gave Trina his signature smirk “Well let's just both have some drinks and forget about why we both agreed to hang out tonight.”

“Agreed.” Trina smiled warmly and held up her glass towards him taking a sip after they tapped their glasses together.