She rolled over in her bed for about the eighth time, moaning in aggravation. Her eyes opened and she sat up in bed, sighing in annoyance. What the hell was wrong with her?

Running her fingers through her messy brown hair, she looked around her dark room, barely seeing anything but shadows. Rain pelted against the window to her right, creating a lullaby that usually helped her fall asleep. She willed it to work this time, throwing herself back onto the pillow behind her and squeezing her eyes shut.

It didn't work.

Swallowing her scream of frustration, she sprung back up and was met by the glowing red numbers of her bedside alarm clock.

2:10 a.m.

Why was she up so late?

A whimper escaped her throat, and she leaned over to turn her lamp on, squinting at the sudden brightness. It wasn't like she had been out partying or anything. And there had been nights where she would stuff herself with sugar and caffeine and still fell into a quiet, peaceful sleep. But this time she had done nothing and gone to bed at around midnight after working double shifts at the Groovy Smoothie. She should have been able to sleep perfectly fine.

So why wasn't she?

Sighing lazily, she reached for her slippers and slipped them on, scratching the back of her head as she trudged to the door. Yawning tiredly, she made a face as she entered the deserted living room, complete with a deserted dining room, deserted kitchen, and deserted swirly slide.

Apartment 2J was odd at night, seeming almost… dead with no one around. She was much too used to seeing James and Carlos fight over the remote for the TV, too used to Kendall hunched over their little hockey dome game, and way too used to Logan sitting in a corner, stuffing his nose into a math theory book.

There was no Katie typing away on her blog, and definitely no Mrs. Knight fumbling around in the kitchen.

No, it was just her, unable to sleep once again, trying to make some use of her time.

Trying to be as quiet as possible, she grabbed a pudding cup from the fridge and plopped down on the orange sofa, turning on the TV and shrugging when she saw Spongebob was on. Putting on the subtitles, she muted the sound and sighed, a pout forming on her face as she dug into her pudding cup, restless but awake.

After finishing her fourth cup of pudding and growing bored with the underwater sponge's muted laughter (which seemed just as annoying without sound as with), she got up, just looking around her. She was so bored.

The rain grew harder outside, making a louder noise against the window, and she frowned at her blurry reflection in the glass.

Then she got an idea.

Thinking back to when she was little, she remembered having nights like these, unable to sleep, a storm outside. She also remembered sneaking into her older cousin's room when she couldn't sleep. Through the years, he had become her older brother, especially after her mom died and her died dropped her off at his house frequently while he worked late night shifts. She remembered him making room for her while she scooted beside him, feeling protected.

She stared at the door to his room. It might be ten years later and they might both be seventeen now, but the gesture was still there right?

That's what she hoped as she quietly turned the knob to his room, tip toeing over to his sleeping form.

She kneeled by his bed, right where his head was, and tried not to laugh at him.

Oh the evil things she could do to him while he was in such a vulnerable state…

Shaking her head, she pushed that random thought aside and leaned in closer to him.

"James…" she whispered, gently nudging him in the shoulder. "James…"

He mumbled and groaned, adjusting himself to a more comfortable position.

"James," she nudged him again. "Jamie…" she sang softly, a little louder. He only rolled onto his back. "Yo, Diamond!" she hissed, pulling on the purple bandana in his hair.

"Mmm," was his response.

"Hey, listen, I can't sleep." She muttered.

His eyes stayed closed. "What to you want me to do about it?" he snapped groggily, clearly annoyed.

"Scoot over." She told him.

"No," he muttered, giving her his back as he fell back into the sleep that she wasn't able to get.

"James, ugh, James!" she nudged him harder in the back, sighing when she realized he wasn't going to respond.

There goes the loving gesture…

Standing up with a groan, she stuck her tongue out at him, not really caring how childish she looked. It's not like there was anyone there to judge, anyway.

So she made her way back to the living room. The TV was still on, showing something random that she held no interest for.

Spotting the yellow swirly slide again, she decided 'why not?' and walked over to it, plopping herself down on the bottom, laying in it with only her neck up covered.

She stared up at the dull mustard that the darkness cast on it, trying to keep herself busy while mumbling fruits with each letter in the alphabet.

"Apple, banana… cranberry..." she trailed off, already stuck. Was there even a fruit that started with the letter d?

She suddenly felt a presence outside the slide, where her legs were.

"What are you doing?" she shot up at the sound of someone's voice questioning her.

"OW! Jeez…" she yelped when her head collided loudly with the roof of the slide. Sliding down more, she revealed herself to whoever was standing in front of the slide, clutching her head with her groan.

Looking up, she saw that it was Carlos, in his usual nighttime sweats and wife beater, helmet perched on his head and a… baseball bat in his hand?

"Carlos!" she groaned in pain. "You scared the crap outta me!"

His baseball bat landed on the floor with a loud thump, and she winced at the sudden sound, awaiting five angry people to storm out of their rooms and demand what was going on.

"Marissa!" he gasped in relief. "I thought you were a murderer or something!"

"Why the hell would a murderer be hiding in a slide, Carlos!" she growled.

The Latino shrugged and answered with a simple. "You never know…" when he didn't hear her respond, he looked down to see her rubbing the side of her head slowly, and he began to wonder just how hard she had hit herself.

Holding his arm out, his eyebrows scrunched together in worry. "You okay?"

"My head hurts," she whined as she took his hand and he helped her up, causing her entire world to spin.

She fell into him and he held her up easily, sweeping her legs out from under her and carrying her over to the couch.

Turning on the lamp, he saw the small bruise beginning to form. "Jeez, Mari," he commented, running his thumb over the small lump. "How hard did you hit your head?'

"I don't know," she sneered sarcastically. "How hard would you hit your head if you were just chillin' in a swirly slide trying to think of a fruit that starts with the letter d and you suddenly heard a voice?"

He shrugged. "Okay, I get it, pretty hard."

She sighed and rolled her eyes. "Can I please get some ice for the huge chichon that's forming on my head?"

He chuckled at her Hispanic slang and made his way over to the kitchen, wrapping a handful of ice in a small hand towel.

He strided over to her, taking a seat on the space next to her head and rested the makeshift ice pack on her head, ignoring her winces of pain when the bruise met the intense cold.

"Do we have aspirin or something?" she asked him.

He thought for a minute. "I think so, hold on." She grabbed a hold of the towel while he scoured the medicine cabinet for aspirin.

Turning her head slightly, her eyes followed him, and a sudden thought came to her mind when he reached up for a box on the top shelf.

She had to admit, that tank top did suit him pretty well, outlining the shape of the muscles underneath it. She could easily see his arms flex as he reached up, and she suppressed a dreamy sigh.

What is wrong with you? A voice in her head screamed. Stop checking out your cousin's best friend, it's sick!

How is it sick? Another part of her registered. I mean, he is pretty hot.

And it really didn't help the argument when he reached up to the very top of the cabinet where practically no one could reach and she could see the muscles in his back and shoulders perfectly, sculpted from so many years of playing hockey.

I mean, those sweatpants sure do him some justice… just like that wife beater.

Pull yourself together, Marissa! This is the bruise on your head talking! You hit your head way too hard!

The fact that you're arguing with yourself in your mind explains enough.

"Got it!" he announced triumphantly, holding the box of aspirin up for her to see. She pressed the ice harder to her head and nodded, gulping. Had she really hit her head that hard?

Soon enough, he came back with two aspirin and a glass of water. She sat up slowly and took his gifts. "Thanks." She mumbled, taking the aspirin and chugging down the water.

"Anytime." He replied, staring at her.

When the last drop of water had been swallowed by her, she set the glass on the coffee table and both of them sat there awkwardly… well at least she did. He was totally calm, studying her from afar. Her messy hair, her big blue eyes, her straight nose, her perfect eyebrows. She offered a gentle smile and he couldn't help but notice that she had dimples… and how pretty she looked with them.

This girl was definitely related to James, Carlos could tell that much.

Marissa was having a hard time keeping her train of thought. Whenever she thought of something to say to break the silence, she would meet the mysterious darkness of his eyes and forget everything. Then her eyes would wander down to his tones arms and her stomach would clench and when she would look back up at him, she would notice the dimples on either side of his face and offer a smile.

He was completely hypnotizing, and it annoyed her to no end.

"So… uh…" she couldn't take it anymore, she had to say something. One thing Marissa Diamond hated were awkward silences. "What are you doing up this late?"

He shrugged, slipping off his helmet, and she couldn't help but notice that Carlos could really pull off helmet hair. She shook that thought out of her head, causing his eyebrows to rise. "The rain woke me up." He told her, setting the helmet on the coffee table.

She nodded in understanding.

"Why are you awake?" he threw her way, and her eyes immediately met with his.

"I…uh… couldn't sleep." She admitted, looking down. "It happens to me practically twice a week. I just can't fall asleep." She wondered why she was telling him this. "It's weird."

"Why don't you wake someone up instead of hanging out in the dark by yourself?" he questioned her.

She shrugged. "I have no one to wake up. It's not like James is willing to give up his 'beauty sleep' to stay up with me…"

More awkward silence, where he just nodded, breaking his gaze and staring at his baseball bat lying on the floor.

"I would." He mumbled, a part of him hoping he didn't just say that out loud. He knew that ever since James had invited his cousin to stay with them in California so she could try getting a movie role, things would change, for now the guys weren't only going to be living with a ten year old girl, but one of their age. And Logan, Kendall, and Carlos were extremely nervous about her arrival because not only was this a girl…

But a "Diamond".

There was no way around it; everyone knew the Diamond family was beautiful. One look at James and you knew that.

So when you heard that there was another Diamond coming, you had to be prepared for three things.

Number one: Intimidation. Of course, James was one to turn heads, so when you hear that one of his relatives are coming, you have to be prepare for more of your self esteem to diminish.

Number two: Shallowness. James knew he was hot, and he never shut up about it. So when you hear that someone is family of the pretty boy, you have to be prepared to ignore more talk about their perfect hair, or perfect body, or perfect voice.

And the last, and probably the most important: Heartbreak. James always got the girl. James always dumped the girl, looking for one that could match his high confidence. One that made him want to put down the God forsaken mirror and amaze him. The other members of Big Time Rush knew that Marissa was going to be hot, and that she would probably cause as much of a mess as Jo did, so they all prepared for the disappointment of rejection.

But Carlos had to admit, she did surprise them.

Yeah, Marissa was hot. Gorgeous actually. With her long brown hair and deep blue eyes. She was talented too, and often practiced with Camille and Jo before auditioning for a movie role. Carlos had also heard her and James write a song about a week after she arrived, but no one except him knew that.

She was a lot like James. Talented, pretty, athletic. But she was so much more. She had the looks and the brains, and was just as able to finish a math test as Logan was. She was sarcastic and witty, and loved throwing smart comebacks back at Kendall when he had his moments. And not only that, but she was hyper and creative too! Always making up the funnest games and thinking of the coolest pranks.

She was Carlos' dream girl, and he was determined to get her. He had James out of the way, so the only thing he worried about what Kendall and Logan, who seemed too wrapped up in their thoughts about Jo and Camille to fall for Marissa, even though they both had their moments where Carlos would notice them staring at her for an extra amount of time, dreamy smiles on their faces.

And even though Carlos envied every time that happened, and he swooned every time she smiled at him or hugged him or even laughed at him, he kept it cool, which really surprised him.

Thankfully, no one knew of his huge crush on Marissa, and he planned on keeping it that way and making his move when the right time came.

That right time… was now.

There was more silence and Marissa just sat there, looking beautiful as she played with her fingers. He noticed that there was a slight blush to her cheeks and he again wondered if she had hear his confession.

"James is stupid, you know that?" she said out of no where, and his face twisted into an expression of pure confusion.

"Yeah, I know." He agreed, a small smile playing on his lips, and she tried to direct her attention away from his lips.

"Ugh, he annoys me so much! One minute he's acting like he's my big brother, all protective and loving, and the next, he's a shallow pop star that only cares about his hair!"

Carlos couldn't help but chuckle at her little outburst.

"What's so funny?" she demanded.

"How hard did you hit your head again?" he snickered.

She rolled her eyes and crossed her arms, but her lips seemed to bunch together in a funny, slanted smile.

"I can't even talk to you about how stupid my cousin is without you laughing at me." She sighed, her smile disappearing.

His face fell.

"Oh, come on, Mari," he moaned, finding it impossible to resist her. Sighing, he scooted closer to her and draped an arm around her shoulder. "You have to admit that was pretty random."

She looked up at him and tried not to gasp at realizing how close their faces were. "I'm not as random as you think I salad." She mumbled.

He stared at her for a moment before breaking out into a huge grin. "What?" he laughed. "That makes no sense!"

"Exactly." She stated matter-of-factly.

Silence fell over them… again.

She looked around the room, trying to calm the butterflies in her stomach at the feel of his thumb gently and unconsciously rubbing her shoulder. She closed her eyes for a minute and bit her lip. How good did that feel?

To be honest, really good.

"You were gonna hit me with a baseball bat?" she suddenly asked, remembering the clatter from before.

He looked down at her with guilty brown eyes. "I thought you were a murderer!"

"Again… why would a murderer be hiding in a slide!"

He paused, trying to think of a reasonable answer that never came. She grinned triumphantly. "Exactly, he wouldn't. The closet I would understand, but the slide? Seriously, Carlos?"

He rolled his eyes. "Whatever."

They both looked in front of them, where the television was showing the Ziggle Zaggles. Neither of them noticed though, they were too occupied in trying not to notice how Carlos was gingerly gliding his hand across Marissa's shoulder and how her hand was slowly etching itself closer to his.

Impatient, Carlos moved his hand closer and tangled his fingers with hers, smiling down at her with glee. A blush crept to her cheeks and she looked down.

Carlos wouldn't have any of it.

He didn't know what came over him, but suddenly he was getting tired of it. Letting go of her shoulder, he pushed her chin up until her eyes met his, and the blue in her eyes seemed to get bigger as she noticed he was leaning in.

You're dreaming. That's it. You're dreaming. None of this is real. You aren't really sitting on the couch at four in the morning with Carlos Garcia, he's not really holding your hand. You're dreaming, because there is no way in hell he would ever kiss-

The thought was cut off by the very real feeling of his lips against hers, and her eyes slid closed slowly and hazily.

The first thing Carlos thought when he kissed her was that she had been eating chocolate pudding, but he didn't mind. He liked it. He felt her untangle their fingers so she could wrap her arms around his neck and climb into his lap, and he had to admit, he didn't stop her. Their lips moved together in a way that neither of them have ever experienced before, and honestly, he loved the feeling. Ignoring the voice in the back of her mind yelling at her, demanding what the hell was she doing, Marissa only threw herself into the kiss and enjoyed the warm feeling of those muscles she had been checking out before flex as he moved his hands to rest at her waist. Her hands tangled into his messy helmet hair, and she couldn't help but think that he truly did have amazing helmet hair.

When their was no air left in their lungs, they broke apart, staring at each other as they caught their breath.

"Wow." He breathed, smiling.

"yeah." She agreed.

"So does this mean…" he trailed off, hoping she'd understand.

"That's if you want…" she whispered.

They stared at each other for another minute, and she couldn't help but press another kiss to those soft lips.

"So how do you feel about a movie tomorrow?" he chuckled.

"You mean later today, considering it's almost five a.m." she giggled.

"Well, yeah…"

She pretended to think about it for a minute before smiling and giving him a mini massage on those powerful shoulders. "I'd love to."

With a grin, he leaned in and gave her another kiss.

They were interrupted by the sound of a baseball bat hitting the floor again.

"It's 5 a.m." a voice said.

"why's the TV on?' another voice asked.

"What the hell is going on?" an all too familiar voice demanded, and the main light was turned on to reveal Logan, Kendall, Mrs. Knight, and Katie all standing with their jaws practically hitting he ground.

James stood in front of them, face equally surprised, his hazel eyes huge with shock.

Marissa looked up at her cousin, then at Carlos, realizing that she was still perched up on his lap, his face inches apart from hers. Carlos' eyes were wide with fear, but Marissa's were calm and collected.

"James, I really want to say otherwise, given the awkward situation we have gotten ourselves into," she sighed, her face showing nothing. "But this is exactly what it looks like."

Carlos gulped and awaited the out burst that never came.

James only grinned.


So, uh, I can't sleep… it's almost 5 a.m. and… this came to me… hope you liked it

Click that button!... you'll get to wear Carlos' helmet…. (Hey, I would do it)

Oh, and there's a poll on my profile, if you want you can go vote, I just wanna see which BTR guys has the most love…