-1Title: Two Down, Five to Go (#16)
Category: Future Children
Disclaimers: I own everyone except for the parents.
Author's Note: FEED ME- And thank my review team for this.
"I can't do this." Josh said as he paced the living room for what must have been the hundredth time.
"Yes you can." Liz said as she rocked Alixandria in her arms.
"They'll hate me!" Josh said as he reached the wall and turned around to make tracks once again.
"They'll love you." Max countered as he came into the living room with a bottle of warm milk.
"What if I embarrass myself?" Josh asked in horror.
"What if you're late and then you have to apologize and you end up apologizing for it every five minutes and annoy them and make them think you have some sort of guilty conscious and then that would lead to them thinking that there is a reason. Then they'll be weary of even letting Amanda talk to you." Nicole said in an even voice in one breath.
"But…" Josh began to argue.
"Go before you're late." Max said tossing him the keys.
"But?" Josh said as he took one fearful step towards the door then looked at the people around him.
Nicole rolled her eyes and opened the door with a nod of her head she walked over to Josh and pushed him out of the door shutting it behind him.
There was silence for a moment.
"Thank you." Josh said before he turned and walked to the car. He started the vehicle and tried to swallow the lump in his throat. He had never been so nervous about meeting someone's parents.
"That boy." Nicole said shaking her head with a smile.
"Speaking of boys, are you and Randy going to paint Jenny's room tonight?" Liz asked curiously.
"Yeah. I should probably get going." Nicole didn't look too enthused.
"Why don't you give her a chance. Izzy and Alex wouldn't have let her stay if there wasn't something special about her. Just get to know her before you pass any true judgments." Liz said seeing the obvious dislike for the girl.
"No promises." Nicole said with raised eyebrows.
"I'll see you later." Nicole said as she hugged Max and kissed him on the cheek.
She hugged Liz around the shoulders and kissed the baby in her arms on the forehead.
"So do you know what you want painted yet?" Isabel asked as she helped Jenny remove all the furniture from her room.
"Yeah I do." Jenny said as she lifted one side of her bed.
"Why don't we let the men do this again?" Isabel asked as she lifted the other side.
"Because they're playing with their toys." Jenny said walking backwards into Alex.
"They're really nice toys though." Alex said playfully as he and Thomas moved out of the way so that the bed could come out.
"Finally done playing with the guitars?" Isabel asked as she walked back into the room.
"For now." Thomas said as he and his father went to the dresser.
"You ready?" Nicole asked as she walked into the art room at the gallery and out the double door back exit. It was convenient for transportation of canvases too large to go through the normal doorways.
"Yeah I packed up like one of each color." Randy said as he closed the back of the van used to run painting errands for the gallery customers. Usually it was only used for delivery, but Michael had given them permission to take it and the paints to Isabel's house and paint Jenny's room.
"I brought some paints in my car. I'm going to drive it over there." Nicole said as she turned around to walk into the gallery and to her car out front.
"Stop." Randy said loudly as he walked towards her.
She spun around in just enough time to be face to face to her boyfriend.
He looked at her and cupped on side of her face with his hand. His thumb gently stroked her cheek as her eyes slid closed. He ran his hand to the back of her neck and pulled her forward his lips attacking hers passionately. His tongue was wild and his lips were soft. Nicole grabbed his back for dear life. The kiss was the most intense they had ever shared. Even more intense than the shared eraser room kisses.
As he reluctantly pulled back Nicole let out a moan of disappointment. She leaned against his broad chest feeling his heart beat fast due to over exertion and lack of oxygen. His breathing was erratic as he tried to compose himself. His ragged breathes blowing against her head and ear.
She was not fairing any better. Her breathing was just as inconsistent, but that was because her pounding heart felt as though it was lodged in her throat.
"I love you no matter what you are." Randy said in her ear causing her breathing to stop all together.
She pushed back quickly her mind running amuck, what had he just said?
"I know. I know about you." Randy said looking at her intensely.
"What? What do you know about me?" Nicole asked her eyes wide with fear.
"That you're not like other girls." Randy said stroking her cheek.
She turned from his touch as if it burnt her skin.
"What do you mean I'm not like other girls?" She asked moving farther away, her lip trembling.
"You're special. You're not human." Randy said taking a step towards her, "You're an alien."
Nicole couldn't take it, she had to get away, there were too many jumbled thoughts in her head, and she fled.
Josh nervously rang the doorbell. Amanda opened the door before he could pull his finger away.
"Hey." She said quietly as she gave him a hug and a quick kiss on the lips, "My parents are in the kitchen."
"You started already? Am I late?" Josh asked as he began to panic, "Are they mad? Should I leave?"
"Josh, you're ten minutes early. They're still cooking." Amanda said as she laughed at her boyfriend.
"Oh." Josh let out a breath.
"Don't be so nervous. They'll love you." Amanda said as she hugged him again.
Josh wrapped her in his arms again. The feeling of her body so close to his made him relax… a little.
Amanda released her grasp on him and took his hand.
Josh shut the door behind them as he followed his girlfriend through the hallway and into the dinning area, which was adjoined with the kitchen.
"You're early." Amanda's dad said as he entered the dinning room with a casserole in his hands.
He set it down on the table and shook Josh's hand. Josh looked him straight in the eyes; "It's nice to meet you sir."
Amanda's dad smiled, "Nice to meet you too."
"Finally." His wife added as she walked in with plates.
Nicole rushed through the door to her house.
Matt and Mark looked at their sister with concerned eyes.
"You OK?" Matt asked as his brother went to hug the obviously distressed Guerin.
Nicole backed away quickly, "I'm Fine."
"Liar." Marc said as he went forward again.
"Did Amanda call?" She asked as she tried to calm herself down.
"Don't change the subject." Matt said, as he too became even more concerned.
"I'll just…" Nicole didn't even bother finishing her thought. She ran out of her house and jumped back into her car.
She pulled out of the driveway so that her brothers couldn't follow her. She quietly pulled over to a side road and rested her head against the steering wheel while taking deep breathes.
She would go to Josh's!
She started the car again and pulled out slowly. Turning onto the main road she realized Josh was still at Amanda's.
"OK Nicole, it's OK. Do not panic!" Nicole talked to herself trying to calm down.
"Call Thomas- tell him to send Randy home. Then go over and finish what you were doing before your world fell apart." Nicole instructed herself as she reached for her cell phone.
"Thomas…" Nicole said out loud as she dialed his code number for speed dial.
"Where are you? What's wrong?" Thomas asked picking up the phone before it even rang.
"What?" Nicole asked slightly surprised.
"Matt and Mark called- they're worried. Josh called from Amanda's asking what happened to you. Randy called and said he was going to be late because he was going to look for you. Your parents, Josh's parents, my parents, and Eddie's parents are worried. Even Eddie, our Eddie, is worried about the emotions coming off of you." Thomas said his voice getting louder, but still filled with concern.
"Call them. Tell them I'm fine. I just had a fight with Randy. Tell Randy to drop the paints at your house and leave. I'll take care of Jenny's room." Nicole said formulating a plan in her head.
"You're lying." Thomas said knowing her all too well.
"Thomas, please." Nicole begged softly not denying the accusation.
"Just hurry your pale butt up!" Thomas said caving.
"Love you cousin." Nicole said grateful.
"Love you too."
Nicole hung up the cell phone and pulled over to the side of the road.
"Nicole, you're screwed." She said to herself as she leaned backwards closing her eyes.
Randy pulled the van over about four meters behind her turning off his engine and quietly getting out.
He had been looking for her everywhere.
He slowly ran up to the car. She had her head resting against the headrest, tears pouring out from under sealed eyelids. She looked so utterly distraught.
He would give anything to wrap her up in his arms and cradled her against him their hearts entwined in beat. But he knew she couldn't handle that right now.
He slowly reached his hand out to knock on the glass, but before he could make contact it rolled down.
"Go away." Nicole said a tremble in her voice.
"Sounds like a talk we've had before, but as I recall I was the one in the car." Randy joked nervously.
"Randy… I just I can't do this." Nicole said as she started to start the car.
"Nicole please." Randy said as he put his hand on hers trying to stop her.
She jerked her hand back like his touch was molten lava that scared her porcelain skin.
"NO!" She yelled as she got over into the passenger seat and out of the door running away as quickly as she could. She had to leave. She had to get everything straight in her head first.
Randy just ran after her waiting for her to tire or to at least slow down so that he could catch up.
Nicole cursed under her ragged breath as she felt Randy catch up to her. Why didn't she date really out of shape guys?
She slowed down to a stop and put her head down to try and revive her now battered lungs.
Sucking air deep into her lungs she lifted her head watching as Randy stood above her grinning.
"What?" She asked harshly, it was time for the walls to come up.
"It's a jock thing. You know, running." Randy said as he leaned forward.
She stood erect immediately. Her eyes were a violent sea storm. The gray circles almost black with turmoil.
"Nicole," Randy began taking a small step towards her, careful not to make any sudden movements.
"We need to talk." His voice was smooth like he was trying to calm a wild animal… a wild Guerin… it wasn't exactly an exaggeration.
"Then talk." Nicole said her stance very defensive.
"Nicole, I know you're freaked because I know that you're special but I don't see why you're scared of me." Randy said as he shoved his hands into his pockets.
Before Nicole could reply a car passed by and the sound startled them both.
"Come on." Nicole said motioning to the woods behind her as they both walked into the secluded, more private area.
"How long have you known?" Nicole asked as she starred at the sky.
"You mean really known or had an inkling?" Randy asked as he shifted his weight back and forth.
"Start from the beginning." She commanded her tone unreadable just as her features were.
"When we were in the eraser room. That's where it started. I got a vision or flash of the future or something. You were changing things around you with your hands. Telling me that you were… special. Then when I got home I read the piece of paper you dropped." Randy said as he removed his hands from his pockets and pulled a wallet out of the back pocket of his jeans.
He slid a worn piece of paper out of the folds and opened it,
"I am anything but what I seem.
I'm not like you
But I suffer too
My pain is looming
Looming above me
Tears run like the sea
I desire your Golden touch
But my kind doesn't deserve such"
"It's your poem. Underneath it you wrote- 'alien-hybrid and Jocks don't mix'."
"There's no way you could know from a flash, that you didn't know was real, and a stupid poem." Nicole said glaring at him. He was hiding something.
"You can sense me. I… I can sense you too." Randy admitted, "You always know when I am behind you or when I enter a room, like back at the car. I can do that with you. I can feel the moment you come into a room. My mind doesn't exactly comprehend what's going on but my heart, it knows when you're near. And then there's the dragon thing." Randy said the last part very quietly.
"Dragon thing?" Nicole asked crossing her arms over her chest to try and strengthen her resolve.
"When we were working on the mural I had my back to you and when I turned around you waved your hand over the dragon's eyes and they sparkled like diamonds in the sun." Randy said taking a step closer.
"You spied on me!" Nicole called out.
"Not exactly, and let's not forget you lied to me!" Randy yelled.
"I had to." She countered.
"Why? Why couldn't you tell me?" Randy asked indignant.
"I sort of think my life depends on it! I don't want to be a lab rat for the FBI. Sorry, it just doesn't sound very promising to me!" Nicole said as she snapped her head from side to side.
"You thought I would turn you in?" Randy asked his voice expressing every bit of the hurt he was feeling… feeling because of her.
"Randy…" Nicole said her façade falling a little.
"No. No way." Randy said as he shook his head and gripped his hands in fists, "After I found out I still loved you. I gave up every thing I had at school, my jock friends, and my popularity, to be with you. I was even going to give up a job I LOVE to be with you. You want to know why? BECAUSE I LOVE YOU! Did you honestly doubt me that much? Can you look me in the eyes and tell me that you loved me when you didn't even trust me?" Randy asked his eyes a dark glassy jade. Stone… they were stone.
Nicole looked him in the eyes, "Get out."
"News Flash Girlie we are out." Randy said scoffing.
Nicole took a deep breath, "You can get out. You can walk away from me right now and I will understand. If you don't want to be brought into this hybrid mess you can leave now. I won't blame you." She said her eyes finding the ground very interesting. She knew her self well enough to know that her eyes, right now, were portraying every emotion in her body.
Randy walked over to her and put his hand under her chin lifting her face to meet his eyes. This time she didn't shun from his touch.
"Laurie Nicole Guerin," Randy said looking her in the eyes, "You're not human, you're not normal, you're not like any other person on earth. Not because you're an alien, but because you're an angel. You're my angel."
Tears sprung top Nicole's eyes, "No, I'm not. I'm not an angel."
Before Randy could protest she lifted herself up and kissed him softly, "I'm a pixie. Get it right."
Randy let a grin come across his face.
"I love you." He said as he pulled her close and kissed her forehead.
"I love you too." She said snuggling into his chest.
After a few moments of peaceful silence Randy spoke again, "I like you."
"I like you more!" Nicole responded with a child like glee.
She took his hand and led him deeper into the woods.
"Na-uh!" Randy said back as he gripped her hand firmly.
Josh felt a tidal wave of relief and love flow over him. His stomach finally stopped tightening in knots.
"So Josh, how is school?" Amanda's mom, Teresa, asked.
"Very well. We're just starting our final reviews though so I suspect it won't be that way for long." He said a real smile on his face.
"Finals, heh… school is ending so soon. Do you have any plans for the summer?" Amanda's dad, Will, asked.
Suddenly a picture of Amanda in a bathing suit popped into his mind. He cleared his throat a little before answering, "Not yet."
"So what powers do you have?" Randy asked as Nicole finished her story about her aunts, uncles, cousins, and parents.
"Well…" She said as she turned towards a tree and touched an ivy growing on it making the ivy grow all over the tree and sprouting beautiful weird flowers from a bivine.
"Wow." Randy said as he ran his hand over the thriving vine and then he touched her hand and ran his hand up her arm and into her hair, making her swallow.
"Are you scared of me?" Nicole asked as she watched him hesitate to kiss her.
"Yes." He said in a serious tone.
Her eyes lowered and she closed them.
"But it has nothing to do with you being an alien. It's just you being, well you." Randy said as he released her and started to run knowing she was right behind him.
They both smiled at each other as they playfully wrestled once he let himself get caught.
"It's about time!" Thomas said as he walked through the door when Nicole and Randy got there.
"I know we're late." Nicole said solemnly.
"About two hours late." Isabel said from the couch as she watched a lifetime movie with Jenny beside her.
"We'll stay late." Nicole offered as she walked towards Jenny.
"You want to take me up to your room and show me how you want it painted?" Nicole asked trying to take her Aunt Liz's advice.
"Yeah, come on." Jenny said as she stood up and walked towards the stairs.
"Stay." Nicole said as she looked back at her boyfriend.
"Yes master." Randy grumbled under his breath.
"Good boy." Nicole called back not looking over her shoulder.
"You are so whipped." Thomas said laughing at Randy.
"I'm not exactly alone in that club." Randy said as he looked pointedly at Thomas, "Nicole has everyone in her family wrapped around her finger."
"Except for the girls." Isabel said from the couch.
They stood in an awkward silence.
"Want to see my guitar?" Thomas asked.
"Yeah OK." Randy said with a shrug as he followed Thomas into the basement.
"You play?" Thomas asked as he gestured to the many instruments around the room.
"Not well." Randy said as he glanced around the room.
There was a couch in the center of the room facing the wall opposite the door. There was a TV, DVD player, VCR, Playstation II, and an X-box on the entertainment center that was opposite the couch.
"Now that I play." Randy said smiling.
Thomas smiled as walked over to the system and inserted his favorite alien invasion game.
"Come on." Thomas said motioning Randy to sit on the couch. You didn't have to tell him twice.
"On this wall I want a sun rise. And on this one I want a sun set." Jenny said as she motioned to the walls.
"East and West." Nicole said shaking her head.
"I want a rainy day theme on this wall." Jenny said as she motioned to the South wall, "And I want a scene somewhat like the ones at the gallery. I want a princess being rescued by her prince… if you wouldn't mind trying to tie in the pictures together somehow."
"No problem." Nicole said as the paintings began to form in her mind's eye.
"On my floor I want a path drawn. On the wall with the Princes and Prince I want a latch open door with the castle in the background. And on the ceiling I want it black with glow in the dark stars." Jenny said as she took a piece of paper out of her pocket.
"And I want it to say this in the stars." Jenny said handing it to Nicole.
Nicole opened the paper and read it aloud, "Don't hate me because I am beautiful love me because it's on the inside."
"You'll get paid per wall. So I can pay you as you finish each one or I can just wait till you're completely done and pay you at once." Jenny said as she put her hands on her hips.
"Either way will be fine." Nicole said as she smiled at the girl… maybe her aunt was right after all.
After a slightly awkward silence Nicole spoke, "I should go find my painting partner and get started."
"I have to get started on my homework. If you need me I'll be in Thomas' room." Jenny said as she gestured to the direction of Thomas's bedroom.
Nicole shook her head as she went out the door and wandered down the stairs she had her whole life and into the living room where Alex and Isabel cuddled on the couch.
She looked into the kitchen only to find it bare of any teens. She slowly made her way through the house until she reached the opening to the basement where there were several loud laughing noises emitting from it.
"Boys." Nicole said as she rolled her eyes, watching as Thomas did a victory dance in front of Randy's laughing face.
"Hey, I didn't hear you complain before." Randy said not turning around to face her.
"Sweetie we need to go paint." Nicole said walking up and wrapping an arm around his neck.
"Do we have to?" He whined as he dutifully stood up.
"Actually we need to talk to Thomas first." Nicole said as she reached behind her with her hand and made the door fly closed.
Thomas's jaw hit the floor… how could she do that in front of a human… and why wasn't he surprised?
"Thomas," Nicole began looking into her cousin's eyes, "He knows."
Thomas just let his mouth hang down for a while, his brain trying desperately to process the information.
"Why?" Thomas asked his eyes wider than ever.
"We have a connection and…" That's as far as Randy got when Thomas leapt at him his hands securely around his throat.
"You had sex with her! Wait till her father gets a hold of what's left. IF I LEAVE ANYTHING!" Thomas said as he continued to strangle the poor boy.
Nicole's eyes duplicated her cousin's as she pulled him off of her boyfriend.
"We didn't have sex. We just connected because of kissing. No sex." Nicole said looking Thomas in the eyes.
"No sex?" He said again slightly calmer.
"No sex." Randy whispered hoarsely.
"I don't see why you look so relieved, her dad's still going to kill you." Thomas said wrapping an arm around his cousin as he hugged her tight.
"Start from the beginning." Thomas instructed as he loosened his grip on Nicole.
"Night, and thank you again for having me over." Josh said as he waved to Amanda's parents as they walked out of the door and to his jeep.
"I guess I'll see you tomorrow? Bright and early?" Josh asked wrapping his arms around Amanda's waist.
"Yes Mr. Evans, bright and early." Amanda said smiling at him as he leaned down and kissed her on the lips.
As Josh pulled away he asked, "Do you think your parents really liked me?"
"Why are you so worried?" Amanda asked smiling up at her boyfriend.
"It helps to be on their good side when I'm dating you." Josh said kissing her on the forehead.
"They're usually pretty cool with me picking my dates. They have faith in me." Amanda said pulling back a little so she could talk to him more comfortably.
"I know but when it comes times for me to ask…" Josh shut up immediately.
"Thomas just turned homicidal." He spoke after a moment, his face contorted with pure confusion.
"I have to go." Josh said kissing Amanda on the lips on last time and hopping in the jeep.
"What do I do? Tell everyone or keep it a secret?" Nicole asked warily.
"You know as well as I do we can't afford secrets in this family." Thomas said as he repeated one of the main rules their parents had impounded into their brains as young children.
"Would that stop you from keeping this a secret from my dad?" Nicole asked as a look of fear passed in front of his eyes.
"Want to call a meeting or should we do it one at a time?" Thomas asked wearily as he rubbed his hands over his face.
"I'll go one at a time on this. We don't want an angry mob on our hands." Nicole said reasonably.
"They'll still become an angry mob, it'll just take them a little longer to form the mob." Thomas said as his hands fell down to his sides.
"We'll need the time to run." Nicole said grimly.
"Aunt Isabel, Uncle Alex can I see you down here for a moment?" Nicole asked as she sheepishly walked up the stairs into the house. Her hands were nervously wrapped around each other.
"Sure Sweetie." Alex said as he and his wife gave each other questioning looks and followed her back to the basement.
As they stepped into the room Thomas closed the door behind them hoping to drowned out some of the screaming.
"Yeah, it went great." Eddie said to Julie as they discussed each other's practices.
"Yeah hold on babe, I have a call." Eddie clicked over as the knot in his stomach wound even tighter.
"Stop with the emotional roller coaster I don't think I can take anymore ups and downs today." Eddie said his tone joking but his concern obvious.
"What's a matter?" Eddie asked when he received nothing but more emotions.
"Bring your parents to Thomas's house." With that Nicole hung up the phone.
"YOU WHAT? HOW COULD YOU POSSIBLY BE THAT IRRESPONSIBLE?" Isabel yelled as the door behind her opened to reveal the Evan's.
"What happened?" Max asked as he took in his niece's and sister's distraught state.
Josh went over to the huddle of teens. There was a boy on each side of his cousin, but he felt that he needed to be her protector at the moment. He knew his emotions were both selfish and irrational, but he couldn't help how he felt.
He wrapped both his arms around her hugging her tightly to his chest before releasing her and standing behind her between Thomas and Randy.
"Start from the beginning." Liz commanded as she shifted her child from one arm to the other.
"Have you told the others?" Max asked running a hand through his hair.
"The only people who know are in this room." Nicole said her eyes practically cemented to her shoes.
"I'll make the call." Alex said as he offered to take Alixandria upstairs before the real violence started.
Michael, Matt, and Mark were the first people down the basement stairs right after Alex.
"You OK?" Michael asked as he went over to his daughter and wrapped her in his arms crushing her to him.
"Yeah daddy, I'm fine." Nicole said taking a deep calming breath.
Daddy… she only called him daddy when she wanted something or when something was seriously wrong… and judging by the mood that was hanging heavily over the entire room he feared it was the latter.
Mark and Matt looked her over for any physical damage, seeing none they looked at her again, both the boys clearly concerned about her.
Next down the stairs was Eddie, followed by his parents.
Eddie walked over and kissed her on the forehead resting his against hers briefly afterwards. He was obviously the last bodyguard of hers.
"Sorry I took so long, mom was in the shower." He whispered before joining the rather large group of teens around her.
"So why are we here?" Maria asked, as she looked over the teens her uneasiness spreading to her toes and back.
"You might want to sit down." Thomas said gesturing to the sofa.
"Talk." Maria said.
Josh opened his mouth and started to gesture to the sofa.
"Now." Michael said the authority in his voice very apparent.
Nicole wrung her hands around each other opening her mouth only to close it again.
Randy started on her behalf, "We have a…"
"I need to be the one to do this." She said as she gave him a 'Thanks, but no thanks' smile.
She could feel her cousin's around her and she could feel the support radiating off of them.
She took a step forward, towards the rest of her family, the ones that wouldn't be as understanding.
"Please, No one talk till I'm done," She said as an intro, "When me and Randy were making out in the EraserRoom we both got flashes. Since then we have had a connection of sorts."
Michael nostrils began to flare and suddenly Randy was glad the people around him didn't have death ray eyes.
"He saw me use my… gifts." Nicole said finishing her short and brief explanation. Her eyes looking straight into her father's.
"Yeah, I think I'm going to go sit down." Tess said as Kyle helped her to the sofa.
"Nicole." Maria said her throat very tight and her mind in endless mumbles.
"Out." Michael said breaking gaze with his daughter.
"All the teens out." Michael said his tone of voice and commanding stance leaving absolutely no room for argument.
Mark and Matt were the first to move towards the door, fury clearly displayed across their eyes and facial features.
They bypassed the kitchen and headed straight up the stairs into Thomas's room.
Jenny was on Thomas's bed rocking the baby back and forth in her arms, trying to read her textbook lay out in front of her. When she had said she'd watch the baby she didn't anticipate it not feeling well.
"Could you give us a little privacy?" Josh asked as the twins wouldn't leave or request it of her.
"Sure, no problem." She said as she cradled the baby against her and walked out the door and down the stairs into the living room.
The rest of the group crowded inside Thomas's room.
"We need to have a word with you." Mark and Matt said at the same time as they both grabbed an arm and dragged her out of the room and down the hall into Jenny's unfinished room.
"What the…" Matt began.
"…Hell were," Mark said in succession.
"YOU THINKING?" They finished together their voice practically ringing off the walls.
"I didn't mean for this to happen." Nicole said her voice softer than usual, "I'm sorry."
"Sorry isn't going to keep us out of a lab room." Mark hissed through his gritted teeth.
"He wouldn't do that to us." Nicole said automatically defensive.
"You want to take that chance?" Matt asked his leveled headed thinking almost completely gone.
"I would if I had to." She said instantly.
"Good, because now you have to." Mark said running his hand through his hair making it stand up on ends.
"I am sorry." Nicole said again not knowing what else to say.
Matt and Mark both wrapped their arms around her each burying their heads into her hair on a different side of her neck.
"We still love you sissy." They said in unison.
"I love you too." Nicole said a sigh of relief coming over her as she hugged them back forcibly
"We knew this would happen." Alex said reasonably.
"Easy for you to say. It's not your secret!" Michael said his anger getting the best of his irrational side.
"IT'S MY WIFE AND SON!" Alex said as calmly as possible, which couldn't be defined as calmly in even the remotest sense.
"There's no need to fight!" Max said trying to get both men to stop arguing before things got out of hand.
"Two down." Isabel said glumly.
"Five to go." Liz said as she shifted next to her husband.
"We always knew they'd have to share their secrets. Tell the ones they loved what they really were. It was inevitable." Tess said as she squeezed her husband's hand.
"I just wish they'd be more careful. They can't let just anyone in on our secret. It puts us all in danger." Michael said running his hand through his hair.
"At least Randy isn't freaking out. He willingly came and talked to us." Kyle offered trying to ease everyone's mind, including his own, in the slightest.
"That could be something to worry about." Maria said seriously earning some curious glances from the surrounding parents, "Who would willingly come talk to us about this? He has to have a death wish or be insane."
There were chuckles and smiles from everyone.
Michael smiled for a different reason though. Randy Jackson really did love his daughter…
Matt, Mark, and Nicole made their way back into Thomas's room.
As soon as Nicole entered the room she was shoved back out.
"Guy Talk." Eddie said as he locked the door and leaned against it so she couldn't come in.
"We warned you." Josh said calmly as he gently tipped the bat back and forth between his fingertips. Not lifting it but leaving it standing on the floor instead, "I told you to respect her secrets. That includes prying into them."
"I didn't pry. And I respect her secret. I won't tell anyone." Randy said not the least bit intimidated.
"How are we supposed to believe that?" Matt asked as he walked forward with his brother.
"Listen I have been in numerous fights for her. I have had several chances to 'get out' in her words. And I have defended myself to no end when it comes to my feelings for her and dating her." Randy said standing up exasperated, "I LOVE HER. That's all there is to it. I won't run off because if I were going to, I would have by now. I'm not afraid because she's still the Nicole I fell in love with and still do love. I won't turn her into the FBI or any of you because … it's just not right. Alien or not she's still her and you all are still who you are."
"Just for future references, our warning will always stand." Thomas said eyeing him over.
"Yes, yes. Eddie will kill me if I hurt her, Thomas will kill me in my sleep if I hurt her, and if I hurt her I will hurt… Right Josh?" Randy asked going threw the list of threats he had been issued a few weeks before.
"Right." Matt and Mark said in unison.
"Now that we're clear can I see my girlfriend?" Randy asked looking at the door that was getting constantly pounded and cursed at.
Eddie smiled as he opened the door sending Nicole flying into Randy who was standing a few feet in front of the entrance.
"The Alien Mafia done yet?" She asked annoyed.
"They're just being protective of you." Randy said wrapping his arms around her.
"I can take of myself and they don't need to threaten you." Nicole said leaning against him.
"You can't always take care of yourself and they need to threaten every person who breathes the same air as you." Randy smiled at her as the others stared on in amusement.
Nicole turned around and went down stairs to the kitchen while mumbling something about over protective barbarians the entire way.
Jenny slowly rocked Alixandra in her arms as she watched the stars flicker against the dark sky.
She hummed a tune her mother used to sing to her when she was younger. She was startled as the door behind her opened.
"Want baby sitting relief?" Thomas asked as he brought out a cup of tea.
"Sure." She said as she slowly released the child to its cousin.
"What were you humming?" Thomas asked as he watched Jenny sip her tea, sitting in the rocking chair beside hers.
"A song." She said smiling.
"Yeah I figured that much out." Thomas said smiling back at her.
"What was all the commotion about?" She asked glancing through the living room windows to the people inside.
"Nicole…" Thomas started trying to collect his thoughts, "Well Uncle Michael…" He stopped again anything he said would be a lie.
He looked towards her his eyes locking on hers. He couldn't lie to her. He simply couldn't.
"Family thing?" Jenny asked glancing at the floor.
"No, more of a Nicole thing." He said smirking to himself.
After a few moments of silence Jenny spoke, "My mom used to sing that song to me."
Thomas sat quietly rocking his cousin and watching Jenny.
"She loved to sing. Singing and dancing is what she swore she was born to do. Before I came along she would sing at clubs. Her and daddy would spend hours in the dance clubs just enjoying themselves." Jenny said moving the cup around and around.
"Her favorite lullaby to me was one she made herself while she was pregnant. The lyrics were
'Follow the rainbow.
Wish upon the colors, find love in me and others.
Across the rainbow wishes are truth.
Across the rainbow remain our youth.
Love shall be set free.
So visit across the rainbow if you need me.'
At least that's all I can remember." Jenny said tears stinging her eyes.
The door opened startling both of them.
"There's my baby girl!" Liz said as she walked outside making silly faces at her daughter.
Max walked over to Thomas to see his daughter weaving in and out of dreamland.
"Time for beddy-by baby." Max said lifting her to his chest for which her small hands clung for dear life.
Jenny stared off the other side of the porch so that the Evans couldn't see her tears.
The door opened again this time revealing the rest of his family.
"Later Thomas!" Eddie, Josh, Matt, and Mark called as they hurried over to their vehicles.
Tess, Kyle, Maria, and Michael were next. They quickly said their good byes and departed to their vehicles.
Isabel and Alex looked at the two teens who were silent.
"If you want to go to Thomas's room you can. Nicole and Randy are just starting on Jenny's room." Alex said as he pulled his wife back inside with him.
Jenny didn't move so Thomas took it upon himself. He stood up and offered a hand to the girl beside him. She took it and let herself be lead to his bed room.
He walked over to his desk and lit several candles before going back to the door and turning out the lights. He sat down on his bed next to Jenny's stiff form.
He leaned against the wall beside her before asked, "What happened? That night I came to your house… what happened Jenny?"
Jenny swallowed hard. She knew this would be discussed some day, but God how she wished she could postpone it till never.
"My mom loved to dance. It was on the way back from a dance club that the accident happened. I had a dance practice the next day. My very first one. Mom wanted me to follow in her foot steps. So they were coming home early on a Friday night." Jenny began hunching forward to rest her arms on her legs.
"She was driving, and at the intersection a guy didn't stop. She was less than a mile from home when… The guy hit them head on. It killed her. Not right away but it killed her." Jenny said as she took a deep breath.
"She was in the hospital emergency room for over five hours doing emergency surgeries. There was too much internal bleeding. They finally just moved her to a room and let us visit. Daddy sat by her side and cried the entire night. By morning she was gone." Jenny said tears falling of their own free will.
"I was ten at the time. Daddy and I moved as soon as we could. We moved here because there was a job opening and daddy took it. Not long after we moved her he started to drink. At first it was only a brandy or two after dinner. Than it was a margarita after lunch and a wine bottle at dinner. Soon he just drank every free second he had." Jenny said taking another deep breath to clear her tight throat.
"Then the beating started," She began the next part refusing to look in his direction because of shame; her voice cracking as she spoke, "That's what was going on when you found me. He had gotten drunk and he was beating me because he blames me for my mother's death."
Thomas reached out and grabbed her shoulders pulling her to him. She went willingly and cried silently as she was so accustomed to do.
He turned her so that they were both laying properly on his bed. He reached down and pulled a blanket over them.
"He can't touch you here." Thomas whispered as he held her flush against his chest, "No one can hurt you here. I wouldn't let them."
Jenny buried her head deep into the crevice of his neck breathing in the peaceful smell of him.
Thomas swallowed the hatred building up inside his veins. He had never hated before. He had never considered hating anything let alone anyone before Jenny's father had become known to his universe.
He heard a weak whimper from the girl in his arms and he forced the hatred to the side. Jenny didn't need him to hate her father. She needed him to be there for her.
And he would be… when ever she needed.