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Chapter 6

I slept really well considering I was sharing a twin sized bed with a good sized man but apparently we wrestled in my sleep because I woke up facing the curtain with Aj between me and the wall. I couldn't figure out what had woken me besides my disorientation at being on the opposite side of the bed that I started on until I heard a small noise as my curtain pulled slowly open. It was Camie.

“Kat, listen…” She started and I shifted a little causing Aj to moan and roll over while putting his arm around my waist. Camie’s eyes turned hard and she quickly closed her mouth and stalked away.

“Crap” I said quietly trying to untangle myself from Aj’s arms

“Where do you think you’re going? I demand morning cuddles!” Aj said cutely

“I’ll be right back. I think I just burned the last bridge I had” I said quickly swinging myself from my bunk. I caught up to Camie as she paced in back of our bus. “Camie, listen, it’s not what it looks like-”

“What it looks like is that I was completely right last night. Why take back what you’ve said when you are right” She said angrily as my heart dropped. It seemed like seeing Aj in bed with me had caused her some real pain. I felt awful.

“He came over late last night because he couldn’t sleep and decided to stay because my eye was bothering me and I couldn’t sleep either. Nothing happened. I’ve known him for less than a week, I’m not that kind of girl” I said quickly as Camie suddenly stopped pacing and faced me head on.

“You, Katrina Blackwell, are exactly that kind of girl” Camie said harshly before practically running to the rehearsal studio. I sighed and slowly made my way back to the bus. When I got there Aj was out of my bunk and leaning against the outside of the bus. I went to explain what had happened but he was looking at me with this horrified face and it made me stop in my tracks.

“What?” I asked as his mouth hung open and his eyes got wide

“Your eye” He said and I groaned

“Is it that bad?” I asked and he just nodded. I slowly made my way to the bathroom and braced myself before I faced the mirror. What I saw made my mouth drop open too. My eye was a deep black with yellow splotches through it. My cheek was swollen so one side of my head seemed to double the other and a few blood vessels had broken in my eye so it was almost completely red. Aj appeared next to me and wrapped his arms around me from behind.

“You’re still cute” He offered as I rolled my eyes at him

“Adorable. I hear this is the new look of the summer. Want me to give you one?”

“I’m good” He said with a small smile as I cracked one too. There was no reason to be angry with him.

“You should get out of here before you cause any more trouble. I’ll see you in about 20 minutes at rehearsal” I said still staring at my eye as Aj nodded and kissed the top of my head.

“I’ll see you then” He said walking out and narrowly missing my sister as she yawned her way into the bathroom.

“Kat what are you-” She started and then stopped as she got a good look at me “Oh. My. God”

“I know I know. Can we skip the freak out and fix it?” I asked as I studied my face

“Yeah, totally, Ok, time for make up!” She said quickly running into her room for her makeup bag. About ten minutes later with the help of a distraught Sophie the dark bruising turned more into a light shadow but there wasn’t much to be done about my red eye or the swelling

“Well this is great guys. Until I start sweating…” I said with a sigh as I met identical looks of pity from Sophie and Mollee.

“Remind me to never get on the opposite end of your fist” Sophie said to Mollee as she led us out of the bathroom.

“This could be much worse. This could be Camie and you could be packing” I assured Mollee as she gave me the “I am SO sorry” look for the 50th time this morning.

“That’s true I guess. Ugh I’m the worst sister ever” She groaned and I hugged her. As we approached the studio we saw that all the guys were already there with Camie. Aj came right up to me and grabbed my hand.

“Any better?” I asked as he raised his eyebrow

“Some” He lied as I laughed at him

“It’s somewhat comforting to know that while you seem to be perfect on many fronts you suck at lying” He smiled a bit and then took a step behind me as Brian came up to me for his usual morning greeting.

“Kat Good – holy goodness what happened to you?” He asked with concern as he took the good side of my face in his hand and looked closely at my eye.

“It was me, totally me. It was an accident. Totally my bad” Mollee said attempting to keep her promise by doing all the explaining today. What she couldn’t do was take all the pity looks that were directed my way now as everyone came to see what all the commotion was about.

“MOLLEE did THAT?” Nick asked looking at my face as I burned red. Aj squeezed my hand, probably some sign to indicate to me that he was here with me, but it felt like pity and I jerked my hand away.

“Can we just dance? Isn’t that what we are here for? Anyone want to actually put together a tour?” I asked angrily as I threw my bag into a deserted corner and began to roughly put my jazz sneakers on. I heard murmuring from behind me as I assumed Mollee explained in more detail the events of last night (hopefully omitting the part where the blow had been meant for Camie) and Aj cautioned everyone to treat me as normally as possible. I slowly counted to ten and then a wave of shame came over me. They were just concerned. I didn’t have to freak out.

“Ok guys, let’s start” Fly said as I joined everyone

“Sorry” I said sheepishly to the quiet room “I just don’t like extra attention. I appreciate the concern but I’d rather pretend it never happened”

“Sounds good” Fly said as he took the attention of the room back. I sighed as Brian moved next to me, put his arm across my shoulder and leaned on me. I looked at him and he stuck out his tongue. Thank God for Brian. “We’ll start this morning with Larger than Life and then this afternoon we’ll only need Camie and Kat for Shape of my heart. So let’s get started”

“I get the afternoon off!” Brian bragged as I gave him a look. It would be just Camie and me? Why oh why just Camie and me? “Sorry”

“It’s ok. I just know Camie is going to be a nightmare and I don’t want to give her another reason to hate me” I whispered to Brian. I wanted more than anything to stay and work on Larger than life for hours but, as time does when you’re truly dreading something, the morning flew by. It was a cute dance, reminiscent of the music video with the robots but not too difficult. Too soon Fly was dismissing us for lunch. At once Aj was at my side.

“Do you want to grab some lunch?” He asked

“Don’t you want to get a head start on your afternoon off?” I asked grumpily as I made my way over to my bag

“I’m staying to watch” Aj said with a hurt look like he would find it insulting that I believed he would not stay and watch me dance. “Unless you don’t want me”

“No no I want you. I’m sorry. I’m in a bad mood. I don’t really want to spend all afternoon with Camie, my eye is throbbing again and all the makeup has run off so it looks awful-” but I was cut off with a kiss. I pulled back before it got too intimate (who knew where Camie was) but the message was delivered. Stop stressing. You’ll be fine. I’ll be here.

“I don’t think I’ll ever be able to leave your side again” Aj joked as he walked me to the buffet that was set up outside the studio

“And why’s that?” I asked picking up a plate and a bagel

“The one time I left you for any extended amount of time you got hurt. I promised no one was going to hurt you while I was here.” He said simply as I smiled a little. I watched him pick up the bagels and dump them all out on the table

“What are you doing?” I asked as he demolished the contents of the lunch table

“Making you something for your eye” He said taking the bag the bagels were in and filling it with ice.

“You know I think there is actually first aid here…” I trailed off but then I caught sight of his face. He was trying so hard. I smiled “But you know this looks like it would be much more helpful”

“I thought so too” He said returning my smile as he handed me his makeshift ice pack before grabbing a sandwich and taking my hand. We walked out to the beach and Aj put his jacket down so we could sit on the sand without getting too messy.

“Think we’re allowed to see each other tonight? I mean no one saw you were there last night except for Camie but I think she’s too hurt to say anything-” I started

“Good. I hope she’s hurting. I could barely look at her all through the dance I was so furious. I can’t believe she said those things to you” Aj said with his fist tightening in the sand

“Hey. She just wants to be liked. Granted I’m the last person she wants to like her right now but I can understand what she’s feeling. Plus she’s not the one who punched me” I explained as I ate my bagel

“You are saintly to a fault my dear” Aj said relaxing all the same. “But yeah, I think we should be allowed to hang out. Your sister feels awful so she’s not going to stop you.”

“Well, I was thinking that we’d include my sister. She was right about one thing yesterday; I haven’t been spending good time with her. I was hoping you could talk to Nick and see if he’d ask her on a double date with us. It might make it easier for him to relax around her. According to Mollee he’s a real basket case when he tries to impress her. When he calms down she really likes him. What do you think?” I asked anxiously. I watched the thought cross his face and could practically hear his inner debate. Having Mollee there would ensure I’d be able to go out with him but having Nick there meant he had to share time with me. “We could do something alone after…”

“Alright, I guess that sounds fun. I would only double date with Nick Carter for you” He said with a grin. We talked and made jokes the rest of the way through lunch and then Aj walked me back into the studio where Camie was waiting. She eyed the two of us and watched intently as Aj kissed my cheek and settled in a corner where he’d be able to best see me. I went to approach her but she turned quickly away. I sighed and let it go. It wasn’t worth upsetting her right before we’d have to be spending so much time together. We’d get used to each other slowly.

“Ok ladies. The idea with Shape of my heart is that the guys will be in four corners of the stage singing and we will have you two soloing in and around them. It’s very lyrical and very personal which is why I chose you two. You are definitely the strongest emotional dancers” Fly said as I nodded. “So I’ll show you each one section that you’ll be doing and then we’ll break it up and take turns with the different verses. It’s very free form so I’m not committed to any ideas of who dances where and when. I figured we could work together and figure it out”

“Work together. Great.” Camie said quietly so only I could hear it.

“Sounds good Fly” I said cheerfully, determined to make the most out of this and try to keep Camie positive as well. After all, this was the dance solo she’d wanted.

“Ok, here’s how we start from the top” Fly said cueing the music and marking the dance. It didn’t take Camie and me long to get the gist and after watching a few times he made the decision that I would open it for the verse and Camie would run on for the chorus. Then there was the bridge which Fly had hoped we could work on together to figure something out that complimented the two of us. He left us with a parting glance and a promise he’d be back in a half hour.

“So…” I said quietly as Camie grabbed her water and took a sip

“Yeah” She said looking down at her shoe

“Did you have anything in mind?” I asked as she sighed heavily.

“You’re really flexible but I’m not. I’m much better with turns than you are. That’s all I got” She said stiffly

“We’re both good with leaps” I said quietly as she smiled a little

“Your loop combo with the switch leap earlier was pretty awesome. Could we riff on that? I wanted to try it” She said getting a little sparkle in her eye. I ran with it.

“You could definitely do it easily. Since it’s so dramatic we could run in on opposite sides and cross then run the leap sequence so we ended up doing the loops almost on top of each other.” I suggested as she looked at me for the first time all afternoon

“And after the straddle we could land in a roll on the floor so by the time he sings the words ‘shape of my heart’ we could do kind of a back arch circle” She said excitedly as I smiled.

“And he thought we’d need a half hour” I said and she laughed. I glanced at Aj who was silently laughing and shaking his head. I knew what he thought of me being so patient with someone who had been so rude to me but I wasn’t one to stay angry, especially not when the offending party was hurting. We ran the steps a few times with the music and then put it together with everything we had done. Fly came in and was so impressed that he didn’t change it at all.

“Alright ladies, great job, we’ll see you tomorrow” Fly said as we headed out together. Aj made a motion to come and join us but I subtly put out my hand to stop him.

“Camie, can I talk to you quickly?” I asked as she changed her shoes

“Let me go first. I believe you that you never slept with Aj. I also see the way he looks at you. You’re everything to him” She said as Aj pretended to busy himself behind us while he eavesdropped. He was so obvious.

“Thanks. I don’t think he doesn’t like you-” I started but she interrupted me with a laugh

“You think we're best friends after causing his girlfriend to get punched in the face? I highly doubt that”

“I’m not his girlfriend” I said quickly and she looked at me skeptically “We’re dating”


“That wasn’t really your fault anyway. I got my face in the way of my sister’s fist”

“I caused her fist to be there in the first place” She retorted quickly. This was not going the way I’d hoped.

“Regardless of the blame, I think we can put this behind us. You’re really talented and I’d like our bus to not be a war zone. I’d like to get to know you” I said as she picked up her things and started heading to the door

“That’s sweet. I’ll have to think on it. I’m not one for friends” She said turning her back to me

“Well that’s going to be awkward for you then” I said loudly so she would stop

“Why?” She asked turning towards me

"I’m determined to be friends with you and I’m an unstoppable force”

“Meet your immovable object” She said with a smirk as she walked out the door. Ok. It wasn’t perfect but it was a start

“You are too good to her” Aj said from behind me as I watched her walk across the parking lot through the decreasing slit in the closing studio door

“She’ll come around” I said as Aj smiled and handed me my stuff. I threw on my flip flops and headed out the door with Aj’s hand in mine “Did you talk to Nick?”

“Yeah and he’s so excited he could die” Aj said somewhat gloomily

“Hey. We’re going to get to spend time together tonight!” I said trying to cheer him up “And I might be able to sneak you into my bunk again”

“Or I could sneak you into mine. There’s a lot more room” He said as I laughed

“Were you really uncomfortable all night?” I asked as he stretched his neck

“I’ll get the feeling back in my shoulders someday” He said and then seeing me about to interject he added “It was worth it though. I wouldn’t trade it”

“Good save” I joked as he smiled

“Hey I have one question before you run off to shower and prep for our sweet double date. Why did you tell Camie you weren’t my girlfriend?” Aj asked once we had reached the bus and I was about to give him the normal departing words.

“Because I’m not” I said slowly trying to figure out where he was going with this

“Do you want to be?” He asked sincerely

“I think so” I said “But if that’s you asking me then you’ve got another thing coming. These things have to be romantic. Being your girlfriend means we’re exclusive. I need a little more than a sweaty ‘hey you want to go steady’”

“You want more romantic huh? You’re asking for trouble Ms. I-hate-attention. I hope you’re prepared to stand behind your request” He said with a mischievous smile

“What have I gotten myself into?” I joked kissing his forehead and turning to the bus

“See you at 7!” He yelled to my back

“7” I said quietly calculating the time we’d be away from one another. Two hours. I could handle that.

“Kat we’re going on a double date!” Mollee said flying out of the bathroom in a towel and hugging me

“I know! I think Aj may ask me to be his girlfriend” I said as she pulled back to look in my eyes

“Damn it’s hard to see you how feel about that from your eye color when you only have one non-red eye” She said with a laugh

“You could ask me”

“How do you feel about that?” Camie asked with an eye roll

“Excited I guess. I just haven’t had a boyfriend in almost a year. And this is all happening so fast. Do you think it’s too fast?” I asked her as she sat me down on the couch

“You know at first I did. But I see the way the looks at you and how you look at him. I see how you are together. I’m not crazy about you spending ALL of your time with a guy but you seem to be slowly learning how to have each other and the rest of us. I think I decided that life is too short and you’ve gone too long without being happy to wait. If he asks you, say yes. The worst that can happen is it falls apart, right?”

“Is that supposed to be encouraging?” I asked with a grin

“Do it. Do it now. Is that more direct for you?” She asked as I stood up

“Put some clothes on you slut” I said with a laugh as I went to the bathroom to shower. I got out and Mollee and I did each other’s hair. She curled my dark waves into a messy side ponytail that had pieces framing my face and tumbling over my shoulder. I pinned her natural curls into an up do that was just as sexy and messy as mine but left her neck exposed. She was getting really tan so she went for an icy white flowing sun dress that hugged her curves until it fell to her waist and fanned out into a full skirt. I went for the darker version – a dark blue tight tube top dress that went to my mid thigh. The top was heart shaped so I got a little cleavage in and I put on some strappy silver sandals to match my silver necklace. I was hoping that the dark midnight blue would remind him of my mystery eye color. Sophie came out and helped cover up as much of my bruising as possible and then she did the rest in a smoke theme. When we were both done Sophie started laughing and we both looked at her in shock.

“Not the response I was expecting” Mollee said with a grin as Sophie tried to get it under control

“You’ve practically set up an angel and devil theme for this thing” Sophie said through giggles as we looked at ourselves in the mirror. Mollee in her white with her blonde hair delicately pinned sure looked angelic, especially compared to my dark and smoldering ensemble, capped off by my badass black eye.

“Mom would be so proud” I joked as Mollee smiled

“Dad, not so much” She said as we hugged each other. Just then there was a knock on the door. Mollee practically ran for it and I said a quick thank you and goodbye to Sophie as I followed her out. Nick was in dark jeans and a button up the color of his eyes and Aj was in black pants with a muscle shirt that had some Chinese symbol on it in red. Over that he had a deep red button up with the sleeves rolled up to his elbows, exposing his many bracelets and rings. Of course he had a beanie on but no sunglasses so I could watch his eyes as he took me in once my sister had stepped down to meet Nick. His eyes roamed from my bare legs to my hourglass waist and my ample cleavage which caused me to blush a little. I got a quick mental image of what blushing must do to my face with my eye being red and all and it was not pretty so I looked down. He immediately jumped up to my level on the bus steps.

“Hey now don’t do that” He said lightly picking up my chin with his finger

“My eye must make this whole sexy ensemble null in void huh?” I asked as he suddenly became serious.

“A girl who takes a punch to save her sister’s dream and not only endures someone who is trying to tear her down, but embraces her is not a girl who has anything to be embarrassed of. Red eye or not” He said as I leaned in and kissed him lightly

“Ok, Ok…” I said as he laughed

“When will you give yourself some credit?” He asked shaking his head and taking my hand. “You look absolutely stunning by the way”

“Thank you” I said as we followed Nick and Mollee to the beach

“So where are you taking us?” Mollee asked as Nick nervously straightened his shirt.

“We didn’t want to deal with restaurants or other people so we decided a beach picnic might be nice and low key. You had quite the exciting night last night” Aj answered when it seemed Nick couldn’t. I laughed a little. He was such a mess!

“Nick, you look great” I said hoping to help him break the ice

“Thanks. You too. Both of you. Look nice. And great.” He stuttered as Mollee sighed a little

“Breathe Carter” I whispered to him when Mollee broke away to inspect the blanket they had laid out.

“Oh God, what am I doing!?” He asked frantically as I took his face between my hands and squeezed it.

“She likes you for you. You don’t need to impress her. Just breathe and be you. That is who she likes” I said as he nodded and then made a fish face in response to my forcing his face into a chubbier version of what it was. “Just do that. Perfect”

“Coming?” Aj asked impatiently offering his hand. I took it and was able to really take in the scene for the first time. It took my breath away. The guys had set up a huge blanket on the sand and the sun was just setting in its brilliant purples and blues over the ocean. They had a ton of fruit and a small grill was set up to cook chicken and veggies. It was really adorable.

“Guys this is really amazing” I said with a smile sitting next to Aj on the blanket “Just what we needed”

“Glad you like it” Aj said kissing me lightly on the cheek.

“Ok what does everyone want?” Nick asked

“Chicken” Mollee said quickly as I laughed at her

“Chicken is great for me too man” Aj said still staring at me

“Can you just grill some of the veggies, I don’t eat meat” I said causing Aj to start

“How did I not know this?” He asked quickly as I smirked at him

“I don’t know” I said giggling at how annoyed he was at himself for not knowing something so vital yet insignificant “It’s fine, the veggies will be fine”

“This is why we need more time together by ourselves. I need to know all there is to know about you” He said with his eyes alight in curiosity

“Now what kind of puzzle would I be if all my pieces were flipped over and easy to place?” I asked

“Certainly nothing to the puzzle you are now” He said sweetly as we stared at each other’s eyes. We were torn out of our trance pretty quickly as we heard Nick swear and Mollee laugh

“Oh I’m not laughing at you, I swear!” Mollee said trying to hide her smile. I looked over to Nick and saw he had dunked his entire elbow in the chicken marinade. I snickered and Aj was looking determinedly away as Nick looked mortified.

“Ok I’m laughing at you” I said busting out and causing the other two to follow.

“Damn it” Nick said with a small smirk on his face

“Oh come here you mess. Give me this” Mollee said going into the mom mode I knew so well. She slid off his button up leaving him in a white tank top. She got up and walked towards the water with his shirt as he stared after her.

“Go! Go follow her!” I urged him after she was out of hearing distance

“Oh, right” He said quickly standing up and sending a group of the plates flying. I laughed a little and watched him approach her.

“He reminds me of you when you first met me” Aj said with a smirk as I elbowed him

“I was not that much of a mess” I said

“If that’s what you want to believe…” Aj said as we heard a shriek and turned in time to see Nick and Camie run straight into the water. They started in on a huge water fight and Aj and I watched with smiles on our faces

“Looks like he figured out some way to communicate with her” I said with a happy sigh

“Hey Kat” Aj said and I looked over at him taking in his breathtaking eyes while noting with little importance that he was holding a small square box

“Hey Aj” I answered

“Now that we’re alone, I just needed to say something. I know I’ve known you for only a few days and that we’ve been going at a million miles an hour but I feel like we were meant to be and I think you feel it to. So what I’m trying to say is would you be my girlfriend?” He opened the box carefully and showed me a beautiful silver bracelet with all different colored jewels on it. Most were shades of blue and there were a few greens, one gray and one red. “They are the colors of your eyes. I had the red one added today”

“Aj that’s so sweet. I love it. I’d love to be your girlfriend” I said as he leaned in and kissed me passionately. He laid me down gently on the blanket and started planting sweet kisses down my neck and across my color bone. I slipped my hand in between his button up and his muscle shirt and ran my nails lightly down his biceps as he kissed the base of my neck. I gasped a little and he looked up with a mischievous grin.

“I think I found a sweet spot” He said as I met his eyes and smiled “And look at that. Your eyes are dark velvet blue. I think I understand what that color means now”

“Well then don’t stop” I whispered to him as he smiled and flicked his tongue lightly over the sensitive spot on my neck driving me crazy. He ran his hands over my curves and rested one on my upper thigh. His thumb slid seductively under my skirt but stopped there. I knew he was testing, seeing what I would let him get away with in his new role as my official boyfriend. I sat up a little and met his questioning eyes. I answered the unasked question with one word “Slow”

“You’re right. Sorry. I’ll behave” He said kissing my lips once more before looking up at the ocean “Where’d they go?”

“Who knows? Back inside. Look they took the food. When did that happen?” I asked quietly as Aj smiled

“I was oddly distracted” He said

“Can we go by the water? It looks beautiful” I asked. Aj nodded and helped me up. We walked hand in hand to the edge of the water and let the waves send warm pulses over our toes. “It’s so warm”

“It is. Not like those New Hampshire beaches, huh?” He asked and I shook my head

“Want to swim?” I asked with a devilish grin as he raised an eyebrow

“I don’t have anything to swim in” He said as I giggled

“Wearing underwear?” I asked innocently


“I’m not” I whispered walking a few steps away from him so he could only make out my silhouette as I pulled off my dress, flung it to drier land and dove into the water. It took him a minute of standing there before everything registered and then he was flinging off shoes and belts and rings in his excitement to join me.

“Kat?” He yelled once he was in the water. I snuck up behind him and splashed him before diving under again “Oh I’ll get you for that”

“Oh yeah?” I whispered inches from his ear before disappearing in the waves

“Damn girl, you tease…” Aj groaned as I surfaced right in front of him. The water was dark so Aj couldn’t see much of me but knowing that I was completely naked and inches away from him and his body only hidden by a pair of boxer briefs was enough to send him into a lusty spin.

“Want me to put your hands where you’re allowed to touch?” I asked seductively as he met my eyes and nodded slowly. I took his hands and placed them on the outside of my hip bones. I slowly inched them up, allowing him to enjoy the curve into my waist and back up. As they neared my chest I allowed them to play on the periphery before moving them forward to my collar bone and up to my cheeks. “Get the drift?”

“Go it” He said lightly pulling my lips to his as we made out in the water. He wandered his hands to my butt and I let him brush them over the flesh. Then he ran them up my back through my hair. He came down and kissed my collar bone before replacing his lips with his hand. He inched lower and lower, checking with me as I enjoyed his exploration. Finally his hands met their destination on my breasts and he sighed as I kissed him hard. He started putting his fingers to work as I basked in the pleasure until it bordered on panic. I let out a big whoosh of air from my lungs and stopped his hands where they were.

“Just wait. Let me just center…” I said taking deep breaths to keep the images out of my mind.

“It’s ok. I’m here. It’s just me. I’m yours” He whispered sweetly, carefully cradling me in his arms. My naked body against his naked chest was the most wonderful feeling and I snuggled there as he hummed This is us.

“We should go in” I said after a while of sitting his arms.

“Yeah it’s probably late. How do you want to do this?” He asked as I grinned.

“You go first” I instructed as he slowly let me down and got out onto the beach and pulled his jeans on. “Now turn around”

“Not fair” He said with a laugh but turning around all the same. I slowly got out of the water and stole his button down, buttoning it over me. It was long and it’s a good thing that I’m short because it effectively worked the same way as my dress which I grabbed from the sand as I approached a shirtless Aj.

“Can I borrow this?” I asked as he took me in with new appreciation

“God you are so sexy” He said as I smiled and kissed him again. He brought me to the blanket where we made out some more until he pulled back “Ok if I don’t stop now I’m going to do something that we aren’t ready for yet and I don’t want to ruin this”

“Fair enough” I said with a smirk. We gathered what was left of the picnic and our clothes and snuck back to his bus. “Can I shower quickly?”

“Sure. Don’t take long though. And text your sister” Aj said as I smiled

“Man, she’s got you whipped” I joked

“I just understand where she’s coming from. She saw a guy separate you from her before so it must be scary to have a new guy take up so much of your time. I’m trying to make this as easy as possible for her” Aj explained and my heart warmed

“You are a keeper” I said softly before shutting myself into the bathroom with a big grin. I took a quick shower and came out with a towel wrapped around me to find a note on the couch with a wife beater and boxers.

“I’m in bed waiting, these are for you to wear” I read the elegant script as I smiled and changed into his clothing. Without a bra the wife beater look was certainly a seductive one and I hoped Aj would be able to control himself through the night. I called Mollee and she picked up after a few rings.

“Kat are you still on the beach?” She asked as I laughed

“No we just got back. I’m staying in his bus” I said as she giggled

“Ooh baby”

“Shut up”

“Ok well I’ll bring you some clothes and leave them on the steps of his bus tomorrow morning.” She said as I silently thanked whatever God gave me such an amazing sister

“Thanks so much. How did it go with Nick?” I asked

“It went really well. We finally broke through his nerves I think. We got our first kiss” she said excitedly as I smiled

“Awesome, I’m so happy for you. Well, I’m going to go” I said thinking of Aj waiting impatiently

“Hey let’s not have any other relationship firsts tonight, ok?” She asked as I rolled my eyes through the phone.

“Please, who do you think I am? We’re just going to sleep. Maybe make out some. But other than that, sleep” I said as she laughed

“That’s my girl. Leave them wanting more. Love you!”

“Love you! Bye!” I said hanging up and practically running to the back of the bus where Aj was waiting in bed.

“Damn” He said looking at my outfit “You look much better in that then I do”

“I wouldn’t go that far” I said appreciatively eyeing his arm muscles as I got in bed with him

“So the best thing to do now would be to go to sleep” He said cuddling close to me so our foreheads were touching

“Yes. Definitely” I said with a grin

“But what I want to do…” He said running his fingers up my thigh and stopping at the bottom of the boxers I was wearing

“I know. I want to too. But we shouldn’t” I said quietly as he nodded a little and sighed

“You’re pretty special” He said taking in my face in the dark

“You too” I said quietly. I gave him a light kiss and closed my eyes. And in the comfort of his arms and with the warmth of his breath on my cheek, I fell into a deep and blissful sleep.