Chapter   Twenty

A lot of things happened over the next five months. The Backstreet Boys embarked on the U.S. leg of the Into The Millennium Tour. Destiny went with AJ, again interrupting her college education, which she had decided to continue at Harvard. Since Destiny was close to finishing her sophomore year when she died, she took a test so she could be admitted as a junior. Destiny studied everything she remembered, and a couple things she didn’t have the chance to learn with a tutor, and passed. AJ bought them a little house near the campus so Destiny wouldn’t have to stay in the dorm. All of Destiny’s old friends from Harvard were happy to see her back. When the question of her death came up, Destiny just said it was a case of mistaken identity. They seemed to accept that explanation. They were also very excited to hear that Destiny had married one of the Backstreet Boys, and the wild one at that.

After touring the U.S. for three months, AJ went to Orlando for a few days, while Destiny went back to Harvard. They saw each other the next week when the two met in Las Vegas for the 1999 Billboard Music Awards. Destiny saw that Estella had taken a few days off from the University of Central Florida to attend with Nick. Estella moved in with Nick after all, but stayed in the dorms when classes were in session. It seemed after being friends for a couple months, Nick finally convinced Estella that he really wanted to be with her, that she wasn’t just a rebound. Hope and Jerald came with Kevin and Kristin, and Howie brought Claudia and his sister, Pollyanna. A couple days later, Destiny flew back to Massachusetts, and Estella and Hope flew back to Orlando. AJ, Kevin, Kristin, Howie, Claudia, Brian, and Nick made their way to Los Angeles to shoot the video for their latest single, “Show Me The Meaning Of Being Lonely”, the third single off their second album, Millennium. When that was done, AJ flew to Massachusetts to be with Destiny until her winterbreak started.

AJ and Destiny flew back to Orlando to spend Christmas with their families and friends. Kevin and Brian went back to Kentucky. Kristin went to New York, Howie stayed in Orlando, while Claudia went to Holland. Nick went to California and Estella stayed in Orlando. Leighanne went with Brian to Kentucky. But they all got back together for New Year’s, so they could bring in the new millennium together. They figured AJ and Destiny’s house would suit just fine for a party. It was that day that Destiny chose to tell AJ that she was three months pregnant. AJ looked like he was going to pass out, but the celebration continued as the good news was passed on. AJ decided he and Destiny would sell their house and buy a new one a couple weeks later. Brian decided to sell his house, too, and buy a new one.

Now, AJ and Destiny were in their new home that was closer to Orlando than the other one. They had just finished moving everything in, which was good because Destiny had to fly back to Massachusetts for classes the next day. AJ did most of the work since Destiny was there only on weekends. It would be several weeks before her springbreak. Destiny was sitting in the living room, watching MTV. AJ came in just as her favorite song came on and heard her singing along.

“Maybe you should become a singer and I’ll retire,” AJ said, sitting down next to Destiny.

“Yeah right,” she smiled. “I’d rather not face the wrath of your loyal fans. Besides, I couldn’t put all the time and effort into it right now. Not with school and the baby coming.”

“How are you gonna manage school and the baby?” AJ asked her.

“I really don’t know,” Destiny said. “My mom said she’d move into the house with me and help take care of him or her. But I know she’ll be missing my dad a lot ‘cause he’ll be here working. So, Hope volunteered to help me. She said she’s looking to be a law clerk for a firm in Boston area.”

“Two lawyers in the family,” AJ said, shaking his head. “I only have one and I share him with four other guys.”

“That’s okay, Alex. One day you’ll married to one.”

“Gee, you really think so, Destiny?” AJ asked, acting like an excited little boy.

“If you don’t want me to be a lawyer.....”

“No, no. Be a lawyer. I’d love having a smart wife.”

“Good. Most guys wouldn’t stand for it.”

“Not me. I was brought up to appreciate the smart mind of a woman.”

“I must thank your mom for that.”

AJ put his arms around Destiny and kissed her. “I love you, Mrs. Alex McLean.”

“I love you, too, Mr. Destiny Morningdove,” she laughed.

The two of them sat quietly for a few minutes. AJ thought about Destiny singing. Most of the fans knew her as a future lawyer, but how they react if she became a singer instead? Nick had helped Mandy get a record deal and the fans were a little skeptical about that. But Estella wanted to be a lawyer, too, just like her sisters. She was spending one year at the University of Central Florida to study pre-law before transferring to Harvard. He, as well as Destiny, knew part of the reason was to establish her relationship with Nick. Kristin was a dancer for Cher and was touring with her while the Boys toured the U.S. Claudia was a model, but she was successful long before she and Howie got together. Leighanne was an actress and model and successful, but really got a boost when she started dating Brian. In fact, she just finished filming a movie last month in which she was the star. But the fans were always a little skeptical about Leighanne’s and Mandy’s motives for dating Brian and Nick, AJ gathered that much from what he saw on the internet. They seemed pretty relieved about the break up of Nick and Mandy, and seem to have taken better to Estella because she has no aspirations to be a star.

It was the same with Destiny. The fans seemed to take to her better than Amanda because Destiny had no aspirations to be a star where as Amanda was in a singing group trying to make it when AJ met her, before she left become a solo artist. Then AJ had an idea.

“Destiny?” he started.

“Yeah?” she answered, looking at him.

“Why don’t we record you singing?” AJ went on before she could protest. “It’s just for fun. You know, something I can listen to while you’re in Boston.”

“Just you?”

“Well, me and a couple other people. You wouldn’t mind if I let the guys hear it, would you?”

“No, I guess not,” Destiny said. “But what could I sing? Where would we record? The studio isn’t installed yet.”

“We could go to Kevin’s house,” AJ suggested. “I’m sure he wouldn’t mind. And I’ve heard you sing while listening to Sam Watter’s latest project, Jessica Simpson. You said her music totally suited your style.”

“To listen to, Alex, not to sing.”

“But you sing her songs really well. Which ones are your favorite? You could sing those.”

“I like ‘I Wanna Love You Forever’, ‘Where You Are’, ‘I’ve Got My Eyes On You’, ‘Betcha She Don’t Love You’, and ‘Heart Of Innocence’.”

“That’s five songs. Almost half an album,” AJ told her.

“But ‘Where You Are’ is a duet between Jessica and her boyfriend, Nick Lachey. Who’s gonna sing Nick’s part?” Destiny asked.

“Do you really have to ask? I will. I think it would be great to sing with you.”

Destiny thought for a minute. “Okay, I’ll do it, but it’s your listening ears only. And few others. I don’t want any rumors getting out about me wanting to be a singer when I don’t.”

“You got it,” AJ promised. He kissed her cheek. “I’ll have the background music by next weekend. Are you coming back next weekend?”

“Yeah,” Destiny nodded. “But right now I have to pack my things for tomorrow.”

Destiny and AJ headed upstairs. Together they packed the things she would need. When they were done, Destiny walked over to the window and stared at the grounds of her new home. AJ came up behind her, put his arms around her waist, and rested his chin on her shoulder.

“Have you thought about any names?” he asked her.

“I don’t know what to name him or her,” Destiny said, leaning against him. “How about you?”

“No idea. I think I’ll get one of those baby name books. They always have cool names in those things.”

“I want something unique. A name you don’t hear everyday.”

“How about ‘Music’ or ‘Lyrical’?”

“For a boy or girl?”

“Girl.”

“That would be really interesting. How about ‘Harmony’?”

“I like that. For a boy..... I got it. ‘Elvis’.”

“I’m not naming my son ‘Elvis’. I love him, but not enough to name my son after him. I’ve always liked ‘Lance’.”

“As in ‘N Sync’s Lance?”

“No, as in the name ‘Lance’. I like ‘Brad’, too. How about ‘Devon’?”

“I like ‘Devon’. How about ‘River’?”

“As in ‘River Pheonix’?”

“Or ‘Hunter’.”

“I like both of those names. So we got ‘Music’, ‘Lyrical’, and ‘Harmony’ for a girl and ‘Lance’, ‘Brad’, ‘Devon’, ‘River’, and ‘Hunter’ for a boy. I think we should chose two more girl names.” Destiny thought for a minute. “How about ‘Charity’?”

“You’ve been watching too much ‘Passions’,” AJ said. “How about ‘Paris’?”

“As in my dog?”

“Okay, that’s out.” AJ thought again. “How about ‘Summer’?”

“All right. Looks like we got some great choices.”

“How about you and I got for a romantic dinner?” AJ suggested. “Then when we get back, we can make our hottest fantasies come true.”

“You are such a bad boy, Alex,” Destiny said, smiling. She turned around in his arms and looked at him with a daring glint in her eyes. “Okay, let’s go.”

Destiny went to her closet to pick something to wear while AJ took a shower. She got in after him and proceeded to get ready in the bathroom, not wanting him to see her outfit until she was ready. When she walked downstairs where AJ was waiting, she was rewarded with a whistle of appreciation. After grabbing a light jacket, the two headed to the restaurant.

Chapter Twenty-One
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