Chapter   Fourteen

Several days later....

Nick was sleeping on the flight back to Orlando. Alisha sat between him and Brian. Nicky was with Kevin, Howie, and AJ across the aisle from them. She looked over at them and saw AJ was giving Nicky his sunglasses to put on. Nicky smiled when AJ put them on. Alisha laughed at how the sunglasses looked on her son, too big. The Boys were so good with Nicky. He wasn't afraid when he first started being watched by them. Alisha guessed it was because of seeing them on TV, magazines, listening to their CD, and having pictures of them around the apartment made them familiar faces to him.

Brian looked up from the magazine he was reading and saw Nicky wearing AJ's sunglasses. He also laughed at the sight.

"He's a great kid," said Brian.

"Yes, he is," agreed Alisha. "I'm amazed at how well-behaved he is. It's hard to believe he's gonna be a year old in a couple weeks."

"I'll be twenty-three two days after. I'm getting old."

"Shut up, Brian. You are not. But I'm glad Nicky's birthday is on the eighteenth. My cousin, VJ's half-brother, Loren, was born that day. But he died when he was six months old."

"That's too bad. Does she miss him?"

"She wishes she'd met him. He's actually the oldest brother, born a year before JJ, with a different dad. VJ always said she felt like her family should be bigger. She never knew why she felt that way until her mom told her about Loren. Every time VJ goes to New Mexico now, she visits her brother's buriel site."

"That's good. She could still have a sense of knowing he was actually there. Maybe he's still there with her in spirit, you never know. But anyway, are you nervous about going back to Orlando?"

"A little. Did you tell VJ or BJ I was coming back with you guys?"

"No," said Brian, shaking his head. "We thought it would be a nice surprise."

"I guess." Alisha looked at Nick. "I don't know how he could stand to sleep all the time he's on a plane when you all travel so much."

"With our schedule, trust me, it's pretty easy."

Then a stewardess announced the flight would be landing shortly. Nick woke up and put his seat in an upright position and fastened his seatbelt. Everyone else did the same. Kevin sat Nicky in his lap and put the seatbelt around the both of them. Soon the plane touched down at the airport and made its way to the terminal to unload the passengers.

"Okay, so how are we gonna do this?" asked Alisha.

"Me, Howie, Kevin, and AJ will walk out of the terminal first," explained Brian. "Then you, Nicky, and Nick can walk out a little bit after us."

"Okay," Nick said. "Here, Kev. Let me have Nicky."

Kevin passed Nicky to Brian, who passed him to Alisha, who then gave him to Nick. They got their bags from the overhead compartments and carried them off the plane. The closer Alisha got to exiting the plane, the more nervous she got.

"Don't worry, Ali," Nick whispered in her ear. "Everything's cool. They'll be happy to see you again."

"I sure hope so," Alisha whispered back. She silently followed Nick down the terminal and saw VJ and BJ waiting for them with the rest of the people there to pick up someone. Alisha took a deep breath before stepping out with Nick holding their son.


VJ and BJ looked around the crowd of people coming out of the terminal, searching for the Boys. Finally, BJ spotted their bodyguards.

"There's Lonnie," said BJ, pointing at a really huge guy. "They should be coming out soon."

A couple seconds later, Kevin, Howie, AJ, and Brian stepped out of the terminal. BJ ran to AJ and gave him a big hug.

"Hey, baby," said AJ, squeezing her tight. "I missed you so much."

"I missed you, too." BJ hugged him tighter. "I'm so glad to have you home, honey."

They shared a passionate hello kiss and continued to hug. Brian and VJ were also caught up in a hug. BJ gave him a kiss on the cheek, then gave Kevin and Howie hugs also. When BJ and AJ were done, she gave him a hug, too, while BJ hugged Brian, Kevin, and Howie.

"Where's Nick?" asked VJ.

"Yeah," said BJ. "I want to see if that boy has gotten any taller."

"He should be coming out soon," Brian told them.

VJ looked at the terminal and her mouth dropped open. BJ saw this and looked at the terminal as well. BJ's eyes widened in surprise. There walking out of the terminal was Nick, holding a little boy with blonde hair like his, and Alisha walking right beside him. As they got closer to them, VJ started tearing up.

"Alisha?" VJ blinked her eyes a few times to clear them.

"That would be me," she said, smiling sadly. "Hi, guys."

"Oh my God," BJ breathed. "It's you. It's really you!"

VJ and BJ rushed over to Alisha and threw their arms around her. Pretty soon, all three girls were crying tears of joy at being together again.

"I know you two have about a thousand questions, but could you ask them later? I just want to get settled." Alisha looked at them.

"Of course," VJ said. Then she looked at Nicky. "Is that him? Is that your son?"

"Yeah, that's Nicky."

"Wow." BJ shook her head. "He looks just like Nick. Has anyone guessed or joked about Nick being his dad?"

"Some of my co-workers have, but only one knows for sure," Alisha told them.

"Can I hold him?" VJ asked.

"Of course," said Nick. He handed Nicky to VJ.

"Hello, Nicky. How're you doin'?" she asked her nephew. Nicky sighed.

"I guess that means he's doing all right," said BJ.

"Everybody," said Lonnie. "We need to get going before anyone recognizes the Boys."

Everyone picked up their bags at the luggage claim and put them into a taxi, then climbed into the limo that was waiting for them. They all agreed to meet for dinner later on and all got dropped off at their separate places.

Chapter Fifteen:
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