A/N: Okay, so writing for a new fandom = very scary! I love My Boys, even though I have only seen Season One because here in England its DVDs or nothing and only the first season has been released so far! Anywho, despite what I have heard about PJ & Bobby in the future, I remain a PJ/Brando shipper, and since there is only one fic dedicated to the pairing on here so far, I felt the need to write my own. I really hope I do the fandom and the pairing justice...
Disclaimer: My Boys and all its characters belong to Betsy Thomas, TBSs, and probably some other people, none of which are me. Any characters you don't recognise from My Boys do belong to me!
Chapter 1 - New Player
"...so then she said she was coming to visit" explained PJ as she collected up the deck of cards and prepared to shuffle and deal another hand.
She spoke of her Cousin Debbie, who she hadn't seen in years, but had suddenly called her out of the blue with a line about how it had been too long and they really needed to catch up. The boys seemed interested in hearing more about the mystery relative, who as yet had never been mentioned.
"I have two important questions" said Mike, raising his hand as if he were in a classroom, despite the fact he was sat right next to PJ and was therefore easily heard, "One, is she hot? And two, is she single?" he asked, practically rubbing his hands together with the excitement of it all.
"Seriously, that's what you wanted to ask?" checked Kenny before PJ even managed to open her mouth, "See, I would've asked; one, if she was single, and then two, is she hot?"
"Dude, what is the difference?" Mike wanted to know, looking bemused as he turned to look at his friend as PJ and Bobby watched the pair have another of their usual dumb mini-arguments.
"The difference is this, my friend" began Kenny, "If you ask your way and find out she's hot only to then be told she's not single, you know you missed out. If you check for a single lady first, then the hot is worth knowing about" he explained.
Mike seemed to run through what his friend had said, mulling it over a moment before nodding his head.
"That actually made sense" he conceded, before turning back to PJ as she began to deal out the cards around the table, "So, is she single?"
"Guys, it doesn't matter which way you ask" she shook her head, "I can't tell you if she's hot because first she's a girl and second she's my cousin! As for single, she didn't mention a boyfriend so maybe, but I didn't actually ask"
"Sorry I'm late, guys!"
No further questions could be asked as Brando's arrival interrupted proceedings, "but look who I ran into on the way over" he jerked his thumb back to the door where Andy practically staggered in.
"It's okay, I'm fine" he said breathlessly, "I had to park so far from the building and... nevermind" he gave up on his explanation, collapsing into an armchair as Brando flung his jacket onto the couch and joined the guys at the Poker table.
"What'd I miss?" he asked, as PJ re-dealt the cards to include him.
"Apparently, we're going to meet another member of the Franklin clan, and Mike and Kenny are already arguing over who gets dibs on her if she's hot and single" explained Bobby, only to have PJ shake her head.
"Actually Debbie is my Mom's sister's daughter, so she's a MacIntyre, not a Franklin" she explained, glancing at Brando when a grin appeared on his face.
"DeeDee's coming to visit?" he chuckled, "Oh man, she has such a major crush on me. It is so cute!" he enthused much to PJ's amusement.
"Dude, that was years ago!" she pointed out, "Debbie was just a kid then, she will totally have moved on by now. In fact, when I told her you were crashing here, she barely reacted"
"Oh God, not one of Aunt Margey's daughters" Andy groaned as he levered himself out of the comfy chair at last and came over to the table, watching as the guys played their hand, "That side of the family certainly makes up our entire slut quota"
"Andy!" PJ looked shocked by what he'd said but was laughing a second later, "How can you say that? Debbie was never slutty, she was always really sweet"
"Hot, single, and slutty?" said Bobby, apparently not taking in what PJ had just said at all, "Yeah, there's not enough cold showers in the world for what you're doing to those two" he chuckled as he gestured towards an open-mouthed Kenny and gasping Mike.
"You guys are so sick" the one female at the table shook her head at the amount of base emotion and caveman behaviour surrounding her, "My cousin Debbie is a sweet kid and if you mess with her there will be consequences, you got that?" she said quite seriously.
"Peej, seriously" said Mike with a gesture that was all innocence and surrender, "Like we're gonna be anything but gentlemen to your sweet, sweet cousin" he overemphasised in such a way as to make his friend feel oddly nervous.
Still, she had to accept that whatever Neanderthal tendencies the guys had sometimes, they would be respectful and decent around her cousin. Besides, Debbie would have grown up a lot these past years, and PJ had no doubt she would have learnt to deal with guys unwanted attention if that's what she got. Things would be cool, she told herself, though PJ felt a little less confident as she looked around the table at too many grinning faces. Sometimes the guys were such... guys!
* * * * *
"Thank you so much for driving me down here, Steph" said PJ with obvious gratitude as they waited at the station for Debbie to arrive, "I would've asked one of the guys but they were all being so scuzzy about hitting on my cousin..."
"Hey, Peej, it is not a problem" Stephanie assured her, "Besides, I'd love to see your little girly cousin come back into your life a while. She might actually be on my side about you wearing make up!" she declared.
"Steph" PJ rolled her eyes as she faced her friend, "Would you just..."
"PJ?" said a voice behind her then and she turned around with a stunned look on her face as she realised the young woman stood right there behind her was her cousin Debbie.
The years really had been kind to the once cute kid, turning her into somewhat of a babe at this point. As the cousins hugged each other, Steph looked the new arrival over. She was a hottie and the guys would be crawling all over her, she could only hope that Debbie had retained half the good sense she ought to have learned at the hands of herself and PJ years ago. It would be nice to have a trouble free visit from one of the Franklin relations.
"You remember Stephanie?" PJ checked as she let go of her cousin and made introductions.
"Of course, she was practically your sister in college" enthused Debbie as she dropped the bags she'd only just now picked up in order to hug the other woman.
"Oh, friendly" remarked Steph, looking just a little awkward as she hugged the girl back.
"So" said Debbie a moment later as she gathered up her things once again, "Where are these boys you were telling me so much about?" she grinned, making PJ and Steph share a worried look.
Both were sure they could trust the guys not to mess Debbie around, after all, underneath all the dumb commentes and chauvinist attitudes that occasionally popped up, they were decent enough... well, except Kenny, and Mike, and sometimes Brando.
"Oh, this is not gonna end well" PJ said to herself quietly as they climbed into Steph's car, Debbie chattering away to her friend about clothes and make up already, "Not good in soooo many ways"
* * * * *
After dropping her bags off at the hotel, and PJ apologising at least five times for her spare room being occupied for the duration of Debbie's visit, despite her cousin telling her it was fine, the girls arrived at Crowley's with a view to Debbie meeting 'the guys' as they had been referred to this whole time. Andy would not be there til later, so PJ had said, due to his being busy with work and living in the 'burbs these days, but she would be re-introduced to Brendan, and finally meet Bobby, Mike, and Kenny about whom PJ had talked almost non-stop since her arrival.
"Do you do everything with these guys?" asked Debbie curiously as they entered the bar.
"Pretty much" answered Steph before her friends got a chance, "It's sad, really"
PJ ignored them both as she headed straight for her friends at their usual table.
"Hey guys, I want you to meet my cousin Deborah MacIntyre" she introduced, pointing to the nearside of the table first, "Debbie, this is Mike and Kenny, then we have Bobby and you probably remember Brendan"
"Sure, yeah" she nodded, with a smile that looked forced, "It's good to meet you guys" she said, sounding just a little more genuine as Mike scooched over to make room for her and Debbie joined the group at the table.
PJ moved to allow Steph to slide in beside Bobby and she grabbed a chair to be her own seat at the end of the table. She winced as she heard Mike and Kenny practically bombarding Debbie with awkward questions, and yet her cousin herself looked unphased by the attention or the things they asked. She was open, honest, and unashamed when talking about how few guys she'd dated and an appropriate balance of flirty and uninterested when suggestions were made about dates between herself and either of the guys.
"So, DeeDee, it's been a while" said Brando when he could finally get a word in sideways, but Debbie glanced at him with little interest that stung him just a little.
"Nobody calls me that anymore" she told him, rolling her eyes, "Get a clue, Brando" she told him before going back to her conversation with Mike and Kenny, who only laughed at the way she cut him down.
PJ was less impressed and it showed on her face, though in all honesty she wondered if Debbie was just hitting out at the guy she felt had rejected her as a kid. When PJ, Brando, and Steph were in college, Debbie was just a young teen and besotted with her cousins best guy friend. Of course he liked her as a cute little sister type, but he never would've gone there. That had to hurt Debbie, who Brando himself had nicknamed DeeDee after his love of all things Ramones. PJ couldn't really blame her for that, though she would of course appreciate it if her cousin would be at least civil to all her friends whilst she was staying in Chicago.
"Hey, Debs, you wanna help me fetch a another pitcher and more glasses?" she gestured to the near empty beer jug on the table as she stood up to go to the bar.
"Oh, no thanks, I'm fine" smiled Debbie before going back to her conversation with the guys.
"I'll help, Peej" offered Bobby getting to his feet and going with her, "So, your cousin is... chatty" he said conversationally as they leant on the bar together, waiting to get served, "She seems a little off with Brando though" he noted as the guy in question tried to enter the conversation one more time before giving up and walking away to talk to Steph who was already at the other end of the bar ordering what she would call a sensible ladies drink as opposed to beer everyone else at the table was drinking.
"I know, I need to talk to her about that" sighed PJ as she ordered another pitcher, "I was hoping she'd be a grown up about her old crush on the guy. I guess it stings some he never paid her any attention that way, but she should realise now how innapproriate it would've been, I mean she was fifteen, we were like twenty!"
"I'm sure it'll be fine" he smiled, hoping to ease her worries and change the subject both as he began talking about an event he had to attend for his family.
Truth be told, PJ barely heard a word as she stared across at her cousin in animated conversation with her two womaniser friends, and then at Brando as he tried to look cheerful in talking to Stephanie. Things were already going downhill fast in her 'team' and she needed to do a little damage control before it got any worse.
To Be Continued...