A Collaboration between Bron and Suzie
to Miami," was all Angelina heard as she tried desperately
to rollover and go back to sleep. 'Why is my bed so uncomfortable?'
she thought. Feeling her head resting on a familiar chest, she
Suddenly, she felt
a slight tremor under her and it wouldn't stop bouncing. Laughing,
Nick slowly poked Angel's arm, "C'mon Baby, time to wake
Angel whined, "Don't
want to," as her eyes stay closed.
Nick looked as tired
as she felt but he was excited to see his family, even under
the current circumstances. More than that, he couldn't wait
to have them meet Angelina. When he called his Dad to tell him
when he would be coming home, he also told him about Angelina
and that she would be coming home with him.
As the cabin door
opened, Angel felt the humid air invade the aircraft. Kissing
her forehead, Nick whispered in her ear, "Let's go meet
Angel looked up at
him wide-eyed, "Oh yeah, I'm going to make a great first
impression with my bed head," Angel was laughing as she
thought about it, "And morning breath. Please tell me you
have gum or Altoids?"
Nick grinned as he
took her hand and they walked down the ramp and through the
airport to the baggage area.
Angel's senses went
into overdrive as she smelt coffee. "Oh there is a God.
I'll be right back. Do you want one Nick?"
does smell good. And I have a feeling I'll need to be awake
for a while." Nick rolled his eyes at her after he said
it. Part of him didn't want to face what was ahead at his home.
Smiling up at him,
Angel said, "Everything's going to be okay Nick. It will
all work out. Just remember, every thing happens for a reason.
Not quite sure what the hell that reason would be in your family's
case, but just keep the faith, okay?"
"Yeah. I know.
Now go. Get me my coffee woman!" Nick teased.
As Angel returned
with their coffees, she noticed Nick talking to a couple of
people. 'Uh-oh, fans' she thought, 'Oops, or maybe not.'
here," Nick yelled. Angel picked up the stride in her step.
The last thing she needed Nick to do was draw attention to himself,
with her, and have it be all over the internet just in time
for Kevin to read it as he wakes up.
As she approached
him, Angel noticed a tall, blonde headed man resembling Nick.
my dad, Bob….." Nick hadn't even finished introducing Angel
before Bob reached out to hug her as he began talking, "You
must be Angelina. It's so nice to meet you. My son's been keeping
you a secret."
Angel turned toward
Nick wondering what he had told his family about her. "Nice
to meet you too," Angel mumbled into Bob's shoulder.
Nick missed the eye
conversation Angel tried to have with him. Instead, he pulled
the last of their luggage off the belt.
Let's get out of here," Bob said as he grabbed one of the
The drive to Nick's
place would take about two hours, well, at least at this hour
of the morning. It was now 6:30AM on Saturday. Instead of waiting
around for a flight to the keys, they decided this would give
them all a chance to talk. Nick sat up front with his Dad and
talked while Angel fell asleep in the backseat.
'What the hell is
tickling my nose?' Angelina thought. She brought her hand to
her face and started brushing away the offending object, 'Better.'
Her mind was trying to get back to sleep. Shifting herself into
a more comfortable position, she sighed.
'There it is again!
Ignore it.' Angelina's subconscious was having a conversation
with itself. Turning her head into her pseudo pillow, she shook
her head back and forth to scratch her itch.
"Damn Bro. She
sleeps even heavier than you," Angelina suddenly stopped
moving her head upon hearing a strange voice. Slowly turning
her head and opening her eyes, Angel saw two blurry figures.
She rubbed her eyes with the palm of her hand to focus, in front
of her stood Nick and a younger version of Nick.
Sitting up straight,
Angelina yawned and stretched as she smiled back at the eldest
blonde, "Did you sleep well?" Nick teased.
"Yes, I did
thank you very much."
Nick laughed at her
response, "Good. This is my brother Aaron. Air, this is
Aaron looked at Angel
with a smile and questioning eyes, "Nice to meet you Angelina.
My brother's been keeping you hush-hush. He just mentioned you
would be coming with him this weekend."
Nick blushed before
saying, "That's enough Air."
"Nice to meet
you too Aaron." As they shook hands, Angelina noticed a
feather in Aaron's hand and gave him a look that told him he
Aaron started laughing,
"Guilty," was all he said.
Nick was wide-awake
and full of energy; "You want to go out on the boat with
Angel was taking
a sip of her now cold coffee and almost chocked. "Um…why
don't you two go on out with out me. I want to freshen up, take
a shower, brush my teeth, ya know, feel human again."
Nick knew Angelina
was trying to give him some alone time with Aaron, and he was
appreciative. "Okay baby. Let me get your bags and give
you a quick tour of my pad and then we'll go." As Angel
stepped out of the Escalade, she took a look around.
Angelina questioned while laughing. "Honey, this looks
like a Tiki Hut. Where's the Captain, Gilligan, and the Professor?"
and MaryAnn," Nick jibed backed.
Aaron watched the
couple interact in awe.
Angel's wide eyes were motioning towards Aaron as a light shade
of pink brushed over her cheeks.
Nick laughed, "Oh
please, this is nothing new to him. He's not a vir.."
Angel held up her
hands, "Okay Nick, ten yard penalty! TMI!"
Aaron couldn't help
but laugh at Angel's comment. He thought to himself how most
people that came into their lives thrived on learning inside
information on his family; this was definitely a welcomed break.
Giggling, Nick grabbed
Angelina, picked her up as he carried her into his home.
'Nick, you have a
lot of explaining to do keeping this relationship a secret,'
Aaron thought as he watched his older brother interact with
Nick and Aaron had
spent most of the afternoon out on the boat. Aaron was able
to talk freely about the pent-up feelings he had towards their
mother and father. He explained what had happened. Nick couldn't
help but feel sorry for his younger brother seeing how old he
now looked, and he wasn't even 16 years old yet. His and his
twin sister's, Angel, birthday was next week. Nick was sad to
learn what had been going on for the past eight months while
he wasn't home. He tried to give Aaron good advice on how he
should proceed with this matter. Emancipation from her as well
as looking for a new manager were first and foremost on the
list. Discussing tactics on how this should hit the media was
know Mom will go to the media outlets to make it look like she
is the victim in all this. She'll most likely blame Dad for
all her mistakes in your career and mismanagement of funds."
Aaron knew Nick was
right. Jane wasted no time going to the National Enquirer when
Nick refused to join his family one Christmas in Los Angeles;
instead he stayed with his lived-in girlfriend in Florida. It
took Nick a long time to recover from what his mother had done
to him then, and at times, he still didn't completely trust
her. Sometimes her actions and words were very selfish.
Aaron had a lot to
think about and was grateful he was able to talk to Nick in
private. Their other siblings didn't understand the ramifications
of their mother's actions, especially with their careers.
Wanting to change
the subject, Aaron drilled Nick on his latest projects. One
in particular kept coming up, and she was now at their home
Angelina spent her
time lounging near the water while reading her book. As she
put down her book, her eyes scanned the ocean. It was so peaceful.
She had no idea which boat was Nick's as she looked out on the
boat belongs to Nick?" Angel jumped up out of her seat
hearing a female voice, "I'm sorry. Didn't mean to scare
you," said the blonde standing above her. Extending her
hand, she introduced herself, "Hi. I'm BJ, one of Nick's
Pulling off her sunglasses
to look at BJ, Angelina returned the gesture, "Can you
tell I don't like scary movies?" Angel laughed nervously,
"Hi. I'm Angelina. Nice to meet you BJ."
were all a bit surprised to learn Nick's been dating someone
out in LA. He hadn't mentioned you before." BJ said as
she eyed Angelina.
'Oh boy, she's a
bit protective.' Angelina thought. "We haven't been together
BJ replied nonchalantly. "I think its time I got to know
you a bit better. What do you do for a living?"
Angelina tried to
think if Nick would have talked about the movie deal the boys
were involved in. 'Shit' her mind screamed as she was drawing
"I'm a writer,
but I work as a bartender at a LA restaurant to pay the bills."
Angelina watched for some sort of reaction from BJ, hoping she
would clue her in if BJ knew about the movie.
"Oh wait. Are
you working with Nick and the boys on their movie project that
Nick isn't supposed to tell anyone about?" BJ's face lit
up as she put two and two together.
"Yes, I'm one of the authors. That's how your brother and
BJ started laughing,
"Does Kevin know? He hates it when the boys get involved
with anyone that works with or for them."
replied, "Oh yeah, he knows."
BJ and Angelina talked
for about thirty minutes before Angelina's cell phone rang.
BJ excused herself to go get them some lunch while Angelina
took the call.
How are you doing?"
In a soft, sad voice
Sheridan replied, "Oh, I've had better days. How are you
Guilt set in as Angelina
kept talking to Sheridan. She sounded so sad and depressed.
However, Sheridan reassured her she was fine, or she would be.
Angelina quickly thought about calling Kevin to see if he would
check up on Sheridan later today or tomorrow for her. She would
ask Nick if he knew Kevin's plans for the weekend.
"I know why
you did it Angelina and I don't blame you. I'm just completely
mortified by my ex-boyfriend's behavior. I don't think I'll
ever be able to look at Kevin or any of the boys anytime soon."
Angelina heard Sheridan
sniffle and knew she was crying again. "Why Angel? Why
did Tom do that to me? I don't understand."
Cursing Tom in her
mind, Angelina reassured her roommate that she did nothing to
warrant Tom's behavior. It is his problem and that Sheridan
couldn't do anything to change it.
"I wish I could
send that pecker head's parents a few clues about their son's
sexual preference," Angelina was looking to get revenge
where it would hurt Tom the most.
Sheridan spoke sternly,
"Angelina, I don't want you to get involved anymore. I
know you are just trying to protect me and get even with him,
and I truly appreciate it. But I need to do this one on my own,
in my own way. Okay?" Sheridan was starting to feel a bit
stronger about herself as she talked to Angel.
Angelina knew better
than to argue with her. "Okay Sheridan, I'll stay out of
it." 'But I'm not making any promises about whether other
friends of ours will'' her mind contemplated.
Sheridan wanted to
change the subject and find out more about Angelina's sudden
trip to Florida with Nick. Sheridan sensed something was going
on with Nick but didn't know exactly. "So….how's Florida?"
Exhausting. Do you know how hard it is to try and sleep on a
fuckin' plane during the night? Cripes, it's not easy."
"What no mile
high clubbing?" Sheridan couldn't resist asking.
two losing your spark already?"
In a deep, low voice
Angelina replied, "Oh, if you only knew how untrue that
"Don't rub it
in," Sheridan growled. "So, have you met the rest
of his family yet?"
Angelina filled Sheridan
in on what had happened so far; then got off the phone as she
saw Nick and Aaron heading up from the ocean.
Leaning down to give
Angelina a kiss, Nick started dripping water all over her, "Hey
beautiful, miss me?"
Angelina's mind raced
seeing Nick's wet body in front of her; she appeared to be speechless,
"Uh huh….have fun?"
Nick wrapped his
hand behind Angel's neck and brought her closer to his lips.
Aaron had taken the
chaise lounge BJ used as he began his investigation on the happy
couple. "Hello again."
Breaking her kiss
from Nick, Angelina turned her head towards Aaron blushing,
"Hello. Did you guys have a good time out on the boat?"
"Yes we did,"
Aaron said smirking at her.
BJ came back to the
pool area with some food and drinks on a tray. "You two
can smell food a mile away, I swear. Angelina, beware of these
two! They always know when to show up when food is involved,"
BJ teased her brothers.
Nick got off the
lounge chair to give his little sister a hug, "I've missed
you. How are you doing?"
"I'm doing pretty
good. What about you?" BJ asked as she looked down at Angelina
and then back at Nick.
"I see you've
met my sister BJ," Nick said to Angelina.
"Uh huh. We
were talking for a while." Nick groaned watching Angelina's
tooth filled smile. He didn't know if that was a good or bad
Nick noticed Angel's
cell phone on her lap,
"Have you talked
to Sheridan yet?"
Angelina nodded her
head, "Yeah. Hey, do you know if Kevin had any plans this
thought about Angel's question, "I don't think so. Why?"
"Oh…I was just
going to call and ask him to go over and check on Sheridan for
me," Angel said with a sheepish grin.
Nick smiled, "I
think that's a great idea. I'll tell ya what. You stay here
and get to know my bro and sis a bit better while I call Kevin."
Nick walked casually into the house.
Aaron was staring
at Angelina. Suddenly feeling a bit self-conscious, Angelina
reached for her water bottle and drank it all.
Aaron began, "I got one question for you. You're not playing
my brother, are ya?"
replied, "Playing him? What do you mean?"
"You know, sleeping
with him so you can go and brag about it to your inner circles
in Hollywood, hoping it will help you climb up the ladder in
Angelina's jaw dropped
open, shaking her head, "No, I'm not playing with your
brother. And, just so you know, I don't have any connections
to any inner circles in Hollywood. If I did, it wouldn't have
taken me eight months to sell a movie proposal or find a job
in my field. The way Nick and I met was pure luck. Albeit very
strange, but still through luck."
BJ sat quietly listening.
She had been watching Angelina for a long time even before she
introduced herself. From all appearances, she didn't notice
the character flaws that previous girlfriends had possessed.
Angelina told her about their Thanksgiving. BJ asked the next
time she was out in LA if Angelina would teach her some cooking
tips. Angelina didn't mind at all, hopefully Nick wouldn't mind
either. Although they had a nice talk, BJ wasn't letting her
After calling Kevin,
Nick returned to the group. "All set," Nick said while
scooting himself behind Angel on the lounge chair so she was
leaning on his chest.
BJ watched closely
as Nick interacted with Angelina and was surprised. Nick wasn't
one for showing his emotions out and in the open with an audience,
even his family. But this Nick appeared to care less what he
was doing in public. Nick caressed, held hands and would periodically
kiss. He looked happy and content.
continued, "Nick said you were from Pennsylvania. What
part?" He continued to ask basic questions: family, schools,
friends, hobbies, and then the question that made Nick groan
and Angel chuckle.
"Do you have
any aspirations to be a singer?"
Angel shook her head
'no.' She couldn't speak as she was laughing at the absurdity
of the question. "No. I'm flat," was all she could
Aaron did a once
over of Angelina's body and replied, "Oh, no you're not."
Nick saw red, "AARON!"
hours behind the Eastern Time zone, Kevin slowly stretched as
he hung up the phone. He had tried to call Sheridan at all the
phone numbers he had for her: office, home and cell.
like I'm going to have to take a little drive," He drawled.
Sheridan sat on the
couch with her legs pulled up to her chest. She rested her head
on her knees while staring mindlessly at the TV. The caller
ID showed four calls from Tom and two calls from Kevin. According
to the answering machine, Kevin called back to let her know
he was going to run some errands then drop by to see how she
that man is a pain in my ass some days," Sheridan yelled
out. "I wish everyone would just leave me alone."
As the phone rang
again, Sheridan groaned, "Wonderful. Now my parents are
calling." She got off the couch and decided she had moped
in her pajamas long enough and a nice, long relaxing bath would
do her some good.
"This is useless,"
Kevin muttered as he rang the doorbell again. Suddenly, Kevin
saw Tom walking up the stairs with his arms full of roses, chocolate,
and a pint of Ben & Jerry's.
"Oh ah…hey Kevin,"
Tom said nervously.
Was Kevin's dry reply. "Are ya tryin' to make her fat now
Tom looked down at
his hands and chuckled again, "Oh no, just the chocolate
and roses are for Sheridan, the ice cream is for Angelina."
Leaning into Kevin's shoulder whispering, "It's a secret
I've learned. Angel is very forgiving if she has her two favorite
men to eat."
The thoughts going
through Kevin's mind with that statement were x-rated. Shaking
his thoughts, Kevin asked, "Don't you think you should
be worrying about having Sheridan forgive you, and not Angel?"
Tom thought for a
moment and causally replied, "Nah. Sheridan just needs
some time. We'll talk and work it out like we always do. Angel,
she's another story. She can hold a grudge for a long, long
Kevin chuckled at
that statement then turned serious, "Tom, I think its going
to take a lot more than a dozen roses and some chocolate before
Sheridan wants to see you again."
Tom nodded, "Yeah,
you've probably right. Oh hey, by the way, do you want to try
and meet up some night?"
Kevin pursed his
lips and clenched his fists as he tried to remain in control,
"Tom, I am not gay. Nor am I interested in you. I'm actually
very interested in Sheridan. So, if you don't get going by the
time I count to three, we are going to have a big problem."
Tom saw the anger
in Kevin's face and decided he didn't want to push his luck.
Dropping the flowers, candy and ice cream, Tom took off down
the stairs mumbling "There's always Monday."
you still can be intimidating,' Kevin laughed to himself. Looking
around, Kevin noticed Patrick, the girl's neighbor, lounging
over at the pool. Kevin figured it couldn't hurt to ask him
if he saw Sheridan leave today.
Patrick?" Kevin said as Patrick put down his book and pulled
off his sunglasses.
Sticking out his
hand, "Hi. I don't know if you remember me or not. I met
you briefly a couple of months ago in Sheridan and Angelina's
apartment. My name is Kevin and I'm a friend of the girls."
Patrick nodded his
head back and forth, "Ah yes. I do remember. Sorry, I never
caught your name."
Kevin chuckled at
his memory when Angel answered the door that evening.
"By any chance,
do you have a spare key to their apartment I could use? I left
some important paperwork in their apartment last night and I
need it for a meeting later today." Kevin lied as he hoped
this could gain him access into their apartment.
I don't. But I haven't seen Sheridan or Angelina leave yet today.
They should be home."
Sucking his cheeks
in, Kevin responded, "Thanks man. Maybe Sheridan's still
sleeping or somethin'. Angel left last night to go to Florida."
Good luck," Patrick replied as he put his sunglasses back
on and Kevin walked back up the stairs to the apartment door
for one last try before he headed home.
Back in Florida,
time seemed to have stood still. Angelina read her book as Nick
slept behind her on the lounge chair.
Aaron had made a
quick getaway after he ate lunch saying he needed to go back
to work in the studio before it got too late.
Nick was glad to
learn that Angelina wasn't offended by his brother's rather
crude comment. "Baby, I work in a bar. I've had people
look me up and down before and I've also heard a lot worse comments.
Relax. It was a compliment."
BJ hung out talking
to the couple while tanning. Eventually, she fell asleep too.
Bob and Aaron's twin,
Angel, walked down by the pool area. Angelina heard voices approaching
and gently jabbed Nick to wake him up.
"Oh geez, he
hasn't stopped whining yet?" Bob's voice roared through
Nick woke up and
didn't skip a beat, "Yeah, I get it from your side of the
BJ slowly stirred
awake, "Shhhh….there are people trying to sleep here."
time to get up," a young girl clapped her hands in the
air, "Aren't you going to introduce me to your girlfriend
Stumbling out of
the lounger, Nick embraced his baby sister, "Sis, this
is Angelina. Angelina, this is Angel." Angelina stood up
and shook her hand, "Nice to meet you."
I got a reader's digest version of you from my dad and Aaron."
Nick groaned hearing
"Oh will you
stop. It was all good," Angel teased her brother.
Bob staggered a bit,
"So, what do you guys want to do for dinner?"
Nick looked over
to Angelina with questioning eyes, "Don't look at me. I
have no clue what you have to eat in your tiki hut or what places
are around here to eat. You pick."
BJ raised her head
up, "We can go out to eat. I don't feel like cooking again.
I made us lunch."
Angel piped in, "Well
you didn't invite me. How come no one came to get me?"
Bob replied, "You
don't do anything all day. How can you not feel like cooking?"
Nick raised his hands
up, "Truce. We have company. You can quit your bitchin'
til we're gone, okay?" Nick eyed his father and both sisters.
Said Bob and BJ in unison.
was Angel's reply.
"Why don't we
go to the Quarterdeck? We'll meet y'all up at the main house
in an hour," Nick rattled as he grabbed Angelina's hand
and they walked back to Nick's home.
"Nick, are you
okay?" Angelina asked as they both fell on his couch.
Rubbing her hair
making it a mess, Nick replied, "Yeah, I'm just cranky.
I get cranky when I'm hungry."
"And you haven't
slept much this past week either," Angelina said as she
stood up and reached for Nick's hand.
"Where are we
going?" Nick questioned
"To take a shower.
We only have an hour to get us ready."
Wiggling his eyebrows,
Nick said "Oh I love these types of showers."
back, "Oh yeah. I'll wash your back and you can wash mine."
minutes later, Angelina and Nick drove up to the main house.
"Do you want a tour now or later?"
worked up quite an appetite," Angelina said with a sly
Grinning, Nick beeped
his horn, "Don't I know it."
As the Carter clan
was walking towards the car, Angelina asked Nick where Leslie
"She's with my mother in Parkland." Nick mumbled,
"I doubt they'll talk about her tonight at dinner. When
we get back at our place, I'll fill you in."
forget your seatbelt," Angelina warned him.
He cocked his eye
at her, "Do you want to drive?"
Shaking her head,
Angelina replied "Nope. But I know you've been cited in
the past for not wearing it."
"How the hell
do you know this shit?" Nick asked with amusement in his
"Babe, the county
records are available to the public - online." She gave
Nick a wink as the doors opened to the Escalade.
Bob shouted, "All
right kids. Let's go eat."
It was a lively dinner
as they enjoyed each other's company and teased each other.
No one talked about the negative events going on in their lives.
Instead, they focused on the positives. Nick's siblings were
enjoying embarrassing him by telling childhood stories. Angelina
enjoyed it too, and for once, she didn't feel like she was invading
his privacy by learning new facts.
Nick could tell Angelina
felt at ease too, which he was grateful for. He knew his brother
and sister gave her the third degree that afternoon and she
must have passed with flying colors for them to talk openly
After dinner, Nick
dropped off Angel and Aaron at home and the adults went to a
local bar. Being the designated driver, Nick nursed a beer and
some water until they left. Once they arrived back at the Compound,
Bob, BJ, Angelina, and Nick sat outside drinking and talking.
Since Nick wouldn't be driving anymore, he was sucking down
his Grey Goose vodka.
As the couple staggered
into the tiki hut, both went to the bathroom and then straight
to bed. Once in bed, Angel's thoughts recalled the last couple
When they got back
home from the bar, they decided to sit outside and enjoy the
fresh air. Bob and BJ got to learn more about Nick and Angelina's
project. They talked about their first phone conversation. BJ
couldn't stop laughing when Angelina said she hung up on Nick.
Bob looked at Nick and said, "She won't take your shit.
You better behave." Nick tried to argue but it was all
As their conversation
turned to the Carter's family troubles, Angelina started to
feel uncomfortable. First, there was the Carter divorce. This
wasn't a conversation Nick wanted to hear either, Angelina could
tell. Then, they talked about Aaron's problems. After learning
about the tax lien against Aaron for unpaid taxes in 2001 and
2002, Angelina started to excuse herself as she stood up, "SIT
BACK DOWN," Bob barked. His slurred words worried Angelina
as she looked to Nick for some guidance.
Standing up to join
her, Nick said "It's fine. Stay Angel, please?" Nick
held her hand and pulled her closer to him. "This way I
won't have to repeat this to you later," He gently laughed
in her ear.
She smiled and walked
over to the bar, "Who needs another drink?" A chorus
of me's answered her as she returned with four drinks.
As Bob started to
vent about Jane and what she did with Aaron's money, Nick started
to get angry. His father should have been watching out for his
brother too. Bob was the one that got a phone call from the
bank letting him know Jane borrowed money from Aaron's account.
Nick felt his dad should have done something more back then,
especially with them separating.
As the night progressed
and another round of drinks consumed, the topic of conversation
turned to couples. Nick was quite affectionate with Angelina,
much to his family's surprise. Bob reached out and grabbed Angelina's
hand, telling her next time she comes to visit, he'll make sure
his fiancé would be there too.
This was new news
to Nick. He was shocked and outraged. The two men began arguing
and stood up screaming at each other. BJ went to her father's
side as Angelina held back Nick. The girls dragged the men to
their respective homes to get some shuteye.
Lying on Nick's bed,
Angel rubbed her temples. 'What a night,' she thought. Angelina
closed her eyes again as she felt Nick pull her closer and spooned
up against her. "Goodnight baby," Angelina whispered
as she listened to Nick's breathing, lightly snoring. Eventually,
it lulled her to sleep.
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This page © 2001 - 2007 Bronwyn
All Rights Reserved
This is a work
The characters and events portrayed are fictitious.
Any resemblance to real people or events is purely coincidental.
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