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“It’s too quiet.” Brian said, even though that was a lie with the fireworks going on above them in the sky. It was anything but quiet.
“Quiet?” Nick laughed.
“You know what I mean.” Brian said with narrowed eyes.
“No, I really don’t Brian. You seem to be giving mixed signals. I thought I knew what was going on, but maybe I’m wrong. I think you are afraid of me. You’re afraid I’ll make you feel different too.”
You are afraid of him, just tell him. You already do feel different.
Brian really wanted to but what came out of his mouth next, he couldn’t have stopped because as soon as he spoke he knew he pissed Nick off.
“I- I’m not afraid of anything. I don’t know what you were thinking you were getting out of this trip but I am not gay, Nick. I have a girlfriend. Something most guys want. Even if I wanted to be with you, we couldn’t….well they just wouldn’t understand. What would everyone say?”
Nick stood up and some people near them started to watch them. He was definitely angry, if he could breathe fire he probably would have smoke coming out of his ears. But instead he took a breath and tried to hold it together although his voice was breaking.
“What would everyone say? That’s all you care about, how people see you- isn’t it? Maybe you care how people look at you, Bri...but I don’t. I know who I am.” Nick half whispered, half shouted as his eyes watered from anger.
“Nick, please don’t….” Brian whispered, tugging on his arm to sit back down. Nick pulled away from him and walked away from him towards the hotel.
“Nick…” Brian called after him, but he ignored him and kept going.
He picked up their things and carried them back to the truck, calling Nick’s name but Nick did not answer him, he slammed the door.
“Damn it, Nick...I didn’t mean that how it came out. Please talk to me.” Brian begged when he went into the room to find Nick laying on the bed with his head in the pillow. He wanted to kiss Nick back on the beach but the decision of what to do with Leighanne still lingered in his head. He liked both of them and it was starting to make him anxious.
Nick turned over, looking at him in silence.
Brian felt the lump in his throat try to dislodge itself and coughed as he sat down on the edge of the bed, looking at Nick.
“I don’t know how to start.” Brian confessed, sighing and running a hand through his curly hair.
“You can start by explaining why you were about to kiss me.”
“I was not about to kiss you.” Brian lied. If Nick rolled his eyes any harder at that moment they’d have fallen out. Brian was not ready to admit to Nick, let alone to himself what his heart really wanted. He wasn’t even sure what that was yet and knew it would take some time to figure out.
“You’re full of shit.”
“Nick, you have to believe me. I’m feeling a lot of things right now and I need to make sense of it. I have a girlfriend that I really lo- that I really like and I want to see where it goes with her.” Brian protested.
Nick paid special attention when Brian corrected himself because he knew what Brian didn’t, that he was with Leighanne because it was considered acceptable by everyone. People expected Brian to settle down and have a family. He’d mentioned it in interviews, he’d told the guys about a hundred times that he wanted to move somewhere south and have a big house with a big yard for the kids to play in. He wanted kids more than anything, kids and a family like he had. Deep down, Nick had always been kind of jealous of Brian’s loving upbringing and supportive family. His family life was nothing short of dysfunctional and he couldn’t even tell them his secret because he already knew how they felt about something like that. His parents were close minded and were focused on Aaron’s singing career, the latest cash grab out of his siblings. They were starting to discuss Leslie too and Nick hated seeing this. He loved singing and loved everything that was about to happen. He loved being with the guys and performing, but alone he felt empty. He was hoping that Brian could fill that emptiness.
“Okay, keep covering.” Nick muttered, rolling over and facing the wall.
“Seriously, Nick. I don’t know what you want from me. I don’t want to kiss you. I don’t want to be with you. I have a girlfriend.” Brian protested.
Brian could feel himself getting angry and it was because Nick was absolutely right. It was then that he had a crazy yet brilliant idea….
“If I kiss you and prove you wrong, will you leave me alone about it?”
“Prove me wrong?” Nick asked, sitting up and staring at him with daggers in his eyes.
“Yes, prove to you that I do not have feelings for you and we can move on from this. I don’t want to keep having these fights with you and if we are going to continue being bandmates, we can’t let any of the guys think something is going on.” Brian sighed. Nick got up and walked over to him, facing him and staring him in the eyes like before on the beach. Brian suddenly became very warm, and he could feel his ears turning pink from nerves. Nick was hovering over him, staring him down.
Nick looked annoyed he was making him wait so long.
“I….uh….” Brian blushed, going pink in the ears. Nick smirked at him. He was being stupid, how hard could it be to kiss someone?
He’s not just someone, you idiot. He’s a guy and he’s also your best friend, your little brother. Your bandmate. You are afraid.
Before he could say anything, Nick leaned in and he felt Nick’s hand reach behind his neck, pulling him towards his face. Nick pressed his lips firmly on his mouth without warning, and he didn’t pull away. Brian’s first reaction was to push him off, but he surprised himself by allowing the kiss to happen. So many sensations rushed through his body in that fleeting moment, until they parted.
“Was that so hard?” Nick whispered gently into his ear, making the hairs on the back of his neck stand up. He blinked, unable to speak. He’d kissed another man.
He’d kissed another man.
Nick watched him now with concern because he wasn’t speaking.
He’d kissed another man just to shut him up and that was all. Nothing else. He did not enjoy it.
Except that was a lie. He did enjoy it. He wanted to do it again.
So he did.
Brian stood up, grabbed Nick and kissed him back so fast that he had no time to react. The kiss was full of fire, something he had definitely not felt with Leighanne when they kissed. It had more than animal passion. It had true feelings behind it.
He had willingly kissed another man and he enjoyed every minute of it….but where was this going to go from here? They couldn’t be together. Nobody would understand them. Nobody would accept them. He knew this in his heart. It was going to ruin everything. How was he going to explain this to Leighanne when he saw her again? That not only did he cheat on her, he cheated on her with Nick.
He would have to figure it all out soon.