Chapter 8: Time together?

"When Howie says he is going to call he means it," Kat thought as she put down the phone after another of their hour-long calls. If they werenít on the phone they were chatting online, and her office was abuzz about the elaborate flower arrangements that showed up "just because," according to Howie. She hadnít told anyone whom they were from Ė just someone she met on her vacation.

When she wasnít talking to Howie, she was talking to Kevin, who was taking his best friend role seriously. Actually he said he found to relaxing to talk to someone about stuff other than the music business, or to complain about it with someone who wasnít as close to it as the other guys were. He was doing well. Kelly had stalked him for a little while, which he found upsetting, but she soon found another guy to foist her attentions on. Kevin was, he admitted, a little lonely. Brianís relationship with Faith had deepened Ėhe had even taken her to Kentucky with him to meet the folks. Nick and Jordan were inseparable. Even AJ and Kimberley were a hot item.

Kat knew that all ready. Kim had kept in touch, and AJ, at Howieís insistence, had become one of Katís more frequent online chat mates. He has a wicked sense of humour and their original awkwardness had long ago disappeared. Kim still tried to keep him guessing but they were clearly nuts about each other.

The Kevin situation quickly resolved itself, though. A month or so after Kat left Florida, he and Howie had come up to Toronto on a promo trip. Kat had finally told someone, Alexis, the truth about her trip and her new friends. Alexis was stunned, surprised and amazed. She also admitted a love for the Backstreet Boysí music, something she had never mentioned before.

So when Howie and Kevin arrived at Pearson airport, Alexis was with Kat. After the introductions had been made, Kat stepped back and couldnít help but laugh.

"Whatís so funny?" Kevin asked.

"You," Kat grinned. "Now I know what you meant about not knowing for yourself, but recognizing it in others."

Kevin flushed as he remembered what he had said about Howie and her, then glanced at Alexis. She was talking with Howie, but also looked over often at Kevin.

Kat reached up and gave Kevin a hug, then went on her tiptoes and whispered in her ear, "Go for it."

By the end of the short trip he and Alexis were well on their way.

 

Having Howie around for a few days also deepened his and Katís relationship. They hadnít made love yet, but they had become intimate with each other in almost every other way. She loved the feel of his soft skin on hers, his strong hands ranging everywhere. And the way his mouth worked on her nether regions was incredible. She loved the tasted of him, and the way he moaned her name when he came in her mouth was the sweetest sound she had ever heard. It hurt like hell to say good bye to him at the end of the trip and Kat had cried herself to sleep for days afterwards.

Now he was finally coming back. The group had agreed to perform at MuchMusicís annual awards show. While they would, once again, only be in town for a few days, Kat had decided that now, finally, she and Howie were going to consummate their love for each other. Even if she had to seduce him.

She was going to meet them at the airport but Kevin warned her away, telling her it was going to be madhouse. "If it is anything like this," Kat thought as she battled her way through the crowds of fans at the hotel, "I am glad I didnít go."

This was the first time she as really going to see the Backstreet phenomenon up close. The last time Kevin and Howie had just slipped discreetly in and out of town with limited fuss. This time the music television station was promoting the hell out of the upcoming appearance. It seemed like everyone in Toronto was there, and all the Boys were going to do was walk into the hotel!

As the guard checked her name against his list, she could hear the chorus of wails and screams rise behind her as the limos arrived. She turned, and was about to head towards the noise, when the guard tapped her on the shoulder and told her she would be better of heading up to the suite. Nick had emerged from one of the limos; she could see his white-blond hair from her, and the screams became almost deafening. She nodded her thanks to the man and headed up the elevators to the penthouse.

The room was about half full with people from the record company and the television station. They were giving Kat strange "and what are you doing here, girl?" looks, but she ignored them. She spotted Alexis at the window, also looking a little uncomfortable and walked over to her.

"I donít know how they can stand it," Alexis said, looking up and Kat then back at the crowds in front of the hotel.

"I suppose after all this time it is second nature," Kat mused. She shook her head, "I think we are going to have to get used to it too."

Alexis shivered, "I donít know if I can." She continued when she saw Kat frown, "donít get me wrong. I adore Kevin. I just wish he were around more! I never get to see him, except on TV, and now that he is hereÖ" she gestured at the crowds, "do you really think we are going to be able to spend some time alone together?"

"Hello? Who do you think you are talking to?" Kat tried to joke, and was rewarded with a small chuckle from the other girl. "The fans I can handle... I hopeÖ itís these others I am not sure about," Kat said nodded at the others in the room.

Alexis looked them over. "Yep. Makes me think of an aquarium."

"What?"

"Piranhas, sharks, eelsÖ"

The two burst into laughter, which garnered them some condescending looks from the other side of the room. The two were soon forgotten by the group as AJ and Nick entered the room. Alexisí shark analogy was proven accurate, as assorted groupies, made a beeline for the Boys. Nick looked, as usual, a little awkward when confronted with the microphones and cameras, but AJ was in his element. He saw Kat and waved before doing his best to charm one of the VJís. Nick saw the wave and made his escape, joining Kat and Alexis over by the window.

"Damn, it was even worse than usual," he said, giving Kat a hug. "Whoís your pretty friend?"

Kat laughed and introduced a blushing Alexis to him, warning him that he better behave with her or Kevin would hunt him down. Nick took a step back in mock terror, and begged humble forgiveness, which Alexis, naturally, gave. Kat asked if Jordan came with them, and Nickís face clouded.

"We are sort of not seeing each other anymore," he said sadly.

Kat hugged him, concerned, "you wanna talk about it?"

"Not right now. Later, okay?" he smiled. "Besides I figure you are going to be busy once Sweet D gets up here."

It was Katís turn to blush, and he laughed at her reaction.

Brian had entered the room, and also been pounced on by the media circus. Faith was with him and she disengaged from him quickly, letting him do his thing. She joined the small group by the window, hugging Kat and shaking hands with Alexis. She wiggled her finger at Nick sternly, and he laughed, saying "okay, okayÖ Iíll go be a good Boy," and went over to give Brian and AJ support.

Kevin walked in, still signing autographs. He stopped and looked around the room, smiling widely when he saw Kat. But it was on seeing Alexis that his face truly glowed. It was matched by the glow on Alexisí face.

"You two keep this up, I am going to need sunglasses," Kat chuckled.

"Nice to see you too, Kat," Kevin said, giving her one of his patented hugs. He then moved over to Alexis, and said, almost shyly, "hi."

"Hi."

"Damn I missed you," he said, sweeping her into his arms.

Kat was starting to get nervous. The record folk were starting to depart and there was still no sign of Howie. She wanted to ask Kevin where he was, but he and Alexis were deep in conversation. Even Faith had deserted her to return to Brianís side. She didnít know where Nick was, but she was sure that it was somewhere that he could hook up his game controller. AJ was still flirting with the VJ, and showed no signs of stopping. She wandered over to table and nibbled absently on a cracker from the cheese tray. She must have been even more distracted that she realized, because she was very surprised when she felt something stroke along her neck. She turned quickly to see a rose being held in front of her.

"I couldnít see my girl without getting her some flowers," Howie smiled.

"I think your girl would prefer to see you rather than any flowers," Kat replied.

"Oh, sorry, love, did I take too long to get here?" he asked worriedly. "Can I make it up to you?"

"D, would you just kiss the girl," AJ said, coming up behind them.

"For once you have the right idea, Bone," Howie said, and then his lips were on hers.

"Does time really stop when he does this?" Kat thought, then gave herself over to the kiss. She wrapped her arms around his neck, as he pulled her closer, intensifying the kiss. She could feel his hands stroking her back, and ran her fingertips over the back of his neck and earlobes.

"D! Kat! You better stop! There are children present," AJ laughed.

"Hey!" Nick said.

Howie and Kat broke apart and turned around to see AJ trying to cover Nickís eyes.

"Leave him alone, AJ," Kat said. "Youíre still a child too, remember?"

"Oh babe, you are so going to get it for that!" AJ threatened.

"You forget. I have claws. Iíve used them before, Iíll use them again."

"Yikes," AJ said as he hid behind Nick. "Save me Frack."

Nick laughed, "Man, I am on her side!"

Chapter 9