A/N: I apologize that this chapter is shorter than the last two.

Chapter 2- The Bris and the Bad Decision

September 16th, 2000.

Spoilers: No Bris, No Shirt, No Service.

"Aiden, we're gonna be late!" Nick yelled.

Aiden rolled her eyes. He had been yelling at her a lot lately and she wasn't sure why.

"Where did you put that check? No, we won't be late," said Aiden.

"I think it's in the desk," said Nick.

"Yeah! I just remembered I put the yarmulke in there!" said Aiden.

"What's that for? Gus can't wear it," said Nick.

"Not for about another month, but I wasn't expecting to find one that was baby-sized," said Aiden.

She went to the desk in Nick's office and found the gifts.

"You're just chicken due to the impending bris ceremony," said Aiden.

"Okay, you got me… I'm chicken! You really think I want to watch a mohel put clippers near the baby's penis? What if he misses?" said Nick.

"He won't, Melanie told me she told the rabbi to recommend mohels who had prior experience," said Aiden.

The couple laughed and drove to Lindsay and Melanie's home.


Melanie and Lindsay greeted Aiden and Nick.

"What's wrong with him?" asked Melanie.

"Squeamish," Aiden whispered.

Lindsay laughed as Nick gave Melanie a check of 180 dollars.

"For Gus' college fund," said Nick.


While Nick got himself a drink, Aiden went to say hello to her brother and their friends, Ted and Emmett. Neither Ted nor Emmett had been present at the delivery, as they had had work the next day and had needed to sleep.

Emmett was one of Aiden's closest friends. They had met nearly ten years ago after Emmett had run away from Mississippi and despite Aiden going to college out of state at the time, had been inseparable ever since.

Ted was a different story. Aiden couldn't even remember how the older accountant had become friends with her brother and the other guys. He had just begun showing up at the Liberty Diner more and more and eventually became a permanent fixture in their lives.

Aiden had no idea why Ted had difficulty finding a boyfriend. He was a great guy. However, the group was too busy trying to figure out what Emmett's new boyfriend was saying – the man was Japanese and none of them knew what he was saying so Ted and Michael brought him over to Melanie while Emmett and Aiden talked.

"Have you and Nick started planning the wedding?" asked Emmett.

"Kinda," said Aiden. "His parents wanted us to marry in a church but since he's a WASP and I'm Catholic that's not gonna work. So now we need to find a location his parents will approve of since they offered to pay for the wedding. I shouldn't even be putting up with this. I should just tell Nick that I'd rather elope."

"Do you even love him? He doesn't seem loveable," said Emmett.

"Melanie set me up with him, remember? That means regardless of how I feel, I'm screwed!" Aiden hissed.

They were interrupted by Emmett's date, a young Japanese man who hadn't said a word of English since Aiden had met him. She wished she were more fluent in Japanese like Melanie was. She knew plenty of Italian and Spanish, but not much else where other languages were concerned.

"Melanie says ka-nay means… it means love," said Michael.

Aiden followed Michael and grabbed his ear.

"Ow! What was that for?" asked Michael.

"What is Emmett's date really saying?" asked Aiden.

"He's a male prostitute," said Michael.

He laughed as Aiden rolled her eyes and Lindsay walked over with the baby.

"Can I hold him?" asked Michael.

"The ceremony's about to start," said Lindsay. "Where's Brian?"

"He couldn't make it," said Michael. "Said to tell you –"

"Something came up," said Melanie. "I can guess what."

Nick walked over. Aiden noticed her fiancé didn't look so good. His face had taken on the color of an ashen green, if such a color even existed.

"Nick, are you okay?" asked Melanie. "You look a little green."

"Nothing personal…" said Nick.

He immediately ran to the table and got another drink. Aiden snickered as Lindsay introduced the group to Rabbi Prodish, the mohel who would be performing the bris.

"Oh, I love pot roast!" said Emmett.

Aiden exchanged an amused look with Nick, whose eyes widened as he downed an entire glass of wine in one swallow.

"That's brisket," said Ted. "In the Jewish faith I believe a bris is a circumcision ceremony."

"That's correct," said Rabbi Prodish. "First I give the boy-child a little wine. Then I say a prayer or two. Then I take my scalpel and remove his foreskin."

Aiden glanced at her brother, fiancé, and male friends to make sure they were okay.

Emmett stood still for a few seconds then fainted before anyone could catch him. Aiden then heard another thump that signaled someone else had fainted and realized Nick was also down for the count.

She noticed Michael making a phone call and wondered what her twin was up to.


After Nick and Emmett had revived – barely – the bris began.

Emmett saw the scalpel and felt like he was going to be sick.

"He's really gonna do it… I can't watch," said Emmett.

"Where's Brian?" asked Michael.

"Looking after the only dick that matters… his own," said Ted.

Aiden was too busy watching the bris ceremony to notice Brian walking past her until he spoke.

"Excuse me, Rabbi… you two. In the kitchen – now," said Brian.

Aiden could hear arguing from the kitchen after Lindsay, Melanie, and Brian left. Someone then handed Gus to Aiden.

"Hi, Gus," Aiden whispered. "The sperm donor made your parents mad again."

"Wah," Gus cooed.

"Yeah," said Aiden. "You and I are gonna sit with Nick. He doesn't feel too good."

"As crass as that was, he legally had the right to interrupt," said Nick.

"Don't tell me you're defending him," said Aiden.

"I'm not. Just stating facts, but if he had a problem with Gus having the bris performed he should've said something before today," said Nick.

"He didn't know… his fault," said Aiden.

"Least you got out of getting snipped, kid," said Nick.

"Nicholas Reynolds! Stop that! You're gonna give the poor baby nightmares," said Aiden.

Nick laughed and downed a third drink as Aiden rolled her eyes at his behavior.


Nick and Aiden had decided to go out for dinner. They were just getting seated when Aiden got a text on her cell phone.

Mom Woody's with Uncle Vic and Justin. HELP!

"Oh god," Aiden muttered.

"What?" asked Nick.

"That was Michael. Mom decided to go to a gay bar he was at… my twin brother is embarrassed," said Aiden.

"You've met my mother… she still embarrasses the shit out of me," said Nick.

"I hope that wasn't meant to be literal," said Aiden.

They laughed as their food arrived. Nick had been so busy prosecuting people lately and Aiden had been busy working on material for her show and op-ed pieces for various newspapers such as the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

A night out – away from meddling parental figures – was exactly what they needed.

However, when they got home things soon turned sour.

"I want our wedding to be special… that includes our wedding night," said Nick.

"Where is this going?" asked Aiden.

"I'd rather we not have sex until our wedding night," said Nick.


September 17th, 2000.

Aiden was woken up the next morning when the phone rang. Last night's bombshell and the lack of any affection had her annoyed. She hadn't even gotten a kiss goodnight, making her wonder what she had gotten herself into by saying yes. Was it even worth being in Melanie's good graces now that Nick was taking her for granted?

"Shit," Aiden muttered.

She went to pick up the phone.

"If you're a telemarketer, be advised that you're calling at seven in the morning… and that I'm going to start screaming at you in 5… 4… 3… 2…"

"Aiden it's me," said Michael. "Sorry, I thought that was a recording."

"I used to have one of me saying that until Mom called and got upset… what happened? You never call this early unless something bad happens," said Aiden.

"It's Ted. He overdosed on GHB," said Michael.

"What?" Aiden whispered. "Oh my God… is he…?"

"No," said Michael. "He's in a coma. I don't know what the prognosis is. We have to wait for information from his mother."

"Oh… oh… okay," Aiden whispered.

They ended the call. Aiden shakily placed the phone back in its cradle and pretended to sleep.

A Mohel is the name usually used to describe a Rabbi who conducts Bris ceremonies, hence why it appears in this chapter. TBC...