(Based on the song "Take My Hand" by Dido)

It had been two weeks since JC's altercation with Joey and things had changed for the better. Joey was in and out of the hospital the next day and continued on with the album. He reconciled with JC and dropped the charges. They finished the songs "Gone", "Celebrity", "Game Over", and "Dirty Pop" within that week and as the dust from the fans had settled, they looked towards going to L.A. to finish the album.
"Is everyone ready?" Justin yelled before he walked out the door of the house. Their limo was waiting outside to take them to the airport where from there they would take off to California.
"I'm ready!" Chris exclaimed from behind him as he carried his bags out the door where the chauffer was waiting for them.
"I don't know how much more of this plane stuff I can take!" Erica said, following Chris. Lance followed behind her and the rest were behind him.
"You've only flown once!" Lance replied as he walked down the sidewalk and dropped his stuff at the trunk of the limo.
"Actually, I've flown three times but I've had enough, believe me!" she exclaimed as she crawled into the limo.
"It's not so bad!" he said, sitting beside her as the others also jumped in.
"Yeah, but you're used to it" she finished as Lance just shook his head and turned on some music.
"I just have one rule for this trip!" Chris jumped in as he grabbed some cheese puffs from the cabinet.
"What's that?" JC asked as he put his arm around October and looked over at Chris who was on the other side of her.
"If you fall asleep on the plane and I have to hear you snore, I'm gonna....." he hesitated until he could think of something. "I'm gonna stick these cheese puffs up your nose!"
"Ha! Ha!" JC laughed jokingly as the other guys started to laugh.
"Oh! Don't make me laugh!" Joey winced as he held onto his ribs which were still broken.
"Sorry, man!" Chris replied but still kept laughing as they pulled up to the airport and drove to the closest area to the plane.
Though Joey tried not to laugh, he was happy that Chris was back to his old self and still joked around. He had not made them laugh since before he met Lexie. His comedy with cheese puffs had reassured them on his mental health which comforted them and put them at ease.

"I wouldnt fall asleep if I were you" October whispered to JC who started to drift off. He awoke with a jolt and looked over to Chris who was smiling and holding two cheese puffs in his hands.
"Thanks for reminding me" he replied, sitting up and looking over at October who had the window seat.
"So, how long are we going to be in L.A.?" she asked, leaning towards him and putting his hand in hers.
"I dunno. I'm guessing like two weeks or so. After the album is finished, we are gonna do the video for the first single while we are there. After that, things are gonna be busy again. Lots of grueling long days on the road and tiring nights of shows after shows for three to four months" he finished, closing his eyes, trying not to even imagine the exhausting work that lay ahead.
"I'll still be able to go with you on the road, right?" she asked, a bit concerned on being alone again for three months.
"Of course! You don't think I'm gonna go through all that torture of being without you again, do you?" he looked over at her and smiled.
"What about Erica?" she asked, looking over at her as she sat with Lance who were both deep in a conversation of their own.
"You know, we've talked about this dozens of times and you already know the answers to all these questions" he replied, looking at her sternly as if not wanting to answer the question again.
"I know, I know" she said, sitting back in her seat and gazing out the window, watching the clouds sail across the wing of the plane. "It's just that I cant believe that I can be with you every minute now"
"Well believe it 'cuz I'm not letting you go!" he exclaimed as she turned towards him and kissed him.
"How does Justin feel, not having Britney with him all the time?" she asked inquizitevly as she looked over at Justin who was sitting with Chris across from them. Joey was behind them and took up both seats so he could lay down.
"I'm sure he gets lonely but there isnt really much he can do. Britney has her own career and I'm sure feels the same way. Believe me, when they get together, they are inseperable. We don't hardly get to see him then" he finished, settling into a comfortable position to go back to sleep.
"You aren't actually going to go to sleep are you?" she tried to joke with him.
"Yeah. I trust you enough to protect me against the cheese puffs" he babbled under his breath, too tired to stay awake.
"What?" she asked, not understanding what he said as he lay his head on her shoulder. She looked over at Chris who once again was smiling in JC's direction.

"So, what do you think is going to happen?" Erica asked Lance who stared out of the window that he was sitting beside.
"Well, we are probably going to go right to the hotel and settle in and...." he started but was cut off by Erica.
"No, no. I mean, with us?" she hesitated to ask but looked into his eyes reluctantly.
"Oh!" he exclaimed, a bit embarrased by his lack of common sense. "Um, I dunno. What do you want to happen?"
"I'm not sure, exactly. I'm afraid of jumping into something that I know little about but yet I feel so comfortable with you" she continued as she took his hand and smiled at him. "I'm not going to know if this is right until I know how you feel.
"I understand. There are like a million feelings going through me at one time right now and that is why I'm not sure. I mean, of course I want to be with you but on the other hand I am afraid too. I don't know if I want to jepordize our friendship. It's something I value very much" he finished as he gripped her hand tighter and looked deep into her green eyes.
"I know. I feel the same way about our friendship. But, if it develops into something more, I would feel better if I knew that we were both jumping in with both feet" she leaned back in her seat and rested her head.
"Well, Im sure we will find out one way or the other" he replied as he leaned back also.
"By the way, I did enjoy our kiss in the park" she looked over at him and smiled. He looked back at her and just smiled back as the plane descended to land on the runway.

The plane landed with a thud and JC awoke with laughter all around him. He rubbed his eyes and tried to focus on everyone who looked down at him. October was yawning, as if she had fallen asleep too.
"Whats going on?" he asked as he stood up and looked down at October who was still sitting.
"Oh my God!" October exclaimed as she covered her mouth and laughed.
"What?!" JC yelled as October handed him a mirror. His lips were highlighted with bright red lipstick, his cheeks covered with blush, and his eyes accented with a light lilac colored eye shadow. "What the hell?"
"Well, at least you don't have cheese encrusted in your nostrils!" October stood up and continued to laugh.
"I thought you were supposed to make sure he didn't do anything!" he exclaimed as he pointed at Chris who was laughing so hard that he started to cry. Joey took off to the nearest exit so that he wouldnt laugh any harder than he was. Every breath for him was hard enough.
"Sorry, I must have fallen asleep" she replied, trying not to laugh.
"Thanks alot!" he said with an attitude as he took off for the airplane's bathroom to wash his face.
"Look! Now he's mad at me! He should be mad at you!" she yelled at Chris jokingly and descended off the plane.
"He'll get over it!" Justin said as he walked behind her.
"Yeah, I know!" she replied and waited at the bottom of the steps for Erica.
"You know I had to do it, right?" Chris asked as he met her at the bottom.
"But, of course!" she replied and turned her direction to Erica who was behind him. "And, I'm sure you had something to do with this?" October asked innocently.
"Nope. I don't know anything about it" she said, while playing with her hair.
"Well, unfortunately, you are the only one with lilac eye shadow" she pointed at her jokingly. Erica smirked as Lance put his hand in hers and drug her away.
"You know, I should of figured he would do something!" JC exclaimed as he came down the stairs. October put her arm around him and they walked to the limo.
"Actually, I'm glad that he is back to his old self. If he didn't do anything to you, I'd be worried!" she laughed as they neared the limo and quickly dodged by the fans that had learned of their arrival.
"Yeah, things are pretty much back to normal" he finished as he jumped in and the limo took off to the hotel.

They walked down the hall until they reached the presidential suite of the hotel. A security member unlocked the door and the boys immediately ran into the room.
"Ahh! A bed!" Justin exclaimed as he opened one of the doors to a bedroom and jumped on the bed.
"A bit jet lagged, Justin?" Erica laughed as she looked out the patio door. The view was incredible. She could almost see the whole city from where she stood.
"Uh huh!" was all he mumbled as he lay there but soon got back up and joined them.
"We have a bit of a problem" Chris said as they all gathered back into the living room section of the suite.
"What? You ran out of cheese puffs?" JC exaggerated and rolled his eyes.
"Ha! Ha! Um, no!" he replied with an attitude. "There are only five rooms in here. So, whats up with sleeping arrangements?" he asked questionably.
"Well, I can sleep in JC's room. There is no problem with that" October answered. They were used to staying in the same room in Orlando.
"Ok, what about you, Erica?" Chris continued.
"Um...I dunno?" she replied while looking at Lance quickly.
"She can take my room. I can take the couch tonight. We can figure something out tomorrow" he stated and crashed on the couch, obviously jet lagged too.
"Ok then!" Chris finished as he grabbed his stuff and took a room.
"Well, since this is our only free night for awhile, I might as well make the best of it!" JC grinned as he picked October up and carried her into a room.
"Oh God!" Justin exclaimed as he went to the small kitchen and ramsacked through the fridge.
"I'm tired too, so, I'm headin to bed!" Joey added and walked into his room.
Erica sat down by Lance's feet as Justin left the kitchen to get a shower. They sat in silence for a bit until she grabbed the remote for the TV.
"No, dont" Lance said, still laying at the other end of the couch.
"What? Why?" she questioned with a confused look on her face.
"This is nice. I mean, to be alone. It hasn't been quiet with those guys for awhile" he said, looking at her. He was laying so low on the couch that when he looked at her it seemed as if his eyes were closed.
"Okay" was all she replied as she sat back on the couch. She crossed her legs underneath her, sitting indian style.
"So, have you thought about anything we talked about earlier?" Lance questioned to break the silence.
"A bit. Maybe too much" she looked down at the floor, not wanting to look into his eyes. She was thinking of that night when she talked to Chris at the hospital and he asked her if she believed in love and if she did, then she shouldn't let it pass her by.
"Too much of what?" Lance curiously asked as he leaned up to her.
"Nothing. It isnt right what I'm feeling" she continued to look away.
"What are you talking about? Please tell me" he took her hand and held it tightly.
"I have built this wall around myself and no one was supposed to break it down. Like that day in the park. I told you how good I felt when I was with you and then we kissed. I don't even know if that was right because we felt so strange about it afterwards, like we kissed a complete stranger" she sorted through words and feelings that were jumbled in her mind.
"What are you trying to say?" Lance asked, now confused.
"That I don't know how you feel or what is right, but..." she hesitated and looked at him with tears in her eyes. "I'm in love with you, Lance!"
"Oh!" Lance's eyes opened wide and he looked away from her. Totally shocked by her answer, he let go of her hand and leaned back.
"I am so stupid! I should of never told you that!" she yelled and got up.
"No you're not! No, wait!" he yelled after her but she took off to her room and slammed the door.
"What's goin' on?" Justin asked as he walked out from his shower. Lance just shook his head and fell back down with a thud on the couch.

"Erica?" Lance asked as he knocked on the door, a half hour later.
"Come in" she replied. He walked in the darkened room. Erica lay on the bed, illuminated by only the light from the TV.
"I wanted to apologize for my reaction earlier" he started the conversation, still standing by the door as he closed it.
"No, I want to apologize. It wasn't right what I said and I'm sorry" she looked at his darkened shadow by the door. She had no idea what kind of expression he had on his face.
"You don't have to apologize. I am happy you told me because I feel the same way" he confessed but kept his position, not knowing what she would say.
"Come here" she said, patting the bed as she sat up. He walked over to her and sat down. "You feel the same way?"
"First of all, you're not stupid for telling me how you feel. And second, the day at the park was amazing for me too" he looked at her eyes which seemed to sparkle. Her blonde hair flowed down freely. Lance had never seen her hair unless it was up in a ponytail.
"So, how do you feel, Lance? Tell me" she in a way demanded as she traced his hand with her fingers.
He leaned in closer to her until he was close enough to smell her sweet rose smelling perfume. "I love you, Erica, and this is what I want" he whispered to her.
She looked at him for a second until their lips touched. He kissed her passionately as if he wanted to kiss her forever. She broke away from him and layed back down on the bed. He put his body fully on the bed and leaned over her, and without a word they became one.

Take My Hand

Touch my skin
and tell me what you're thinking,
take my hand
and show me where we're going
Lie down next to me,
look into my eyes
and tell me,
oh tell me what you're seeing

So sit on top of the world
and tell me how you're feeling
what you feel now
is what I feel for you
Take my hand
and if I'm lying to you
I'll always be alone
if I'm lying to you

See my eyes,
they carry your reflection
watch my lips
and hear the words I'm telling you
Give your trust to me
and look into my heart
and show me,
show me what you're doing

So sit on top of the world
and tell me how you're feeling,
what you feel now
is what I feel for you

Take my hand
and if I'm lying to you
I'll always be alone
if I'm lying to you
Take your time
if I'm lying to you
I know you'll find that you believe me
you believe me

Feel the sun on your face
and tell me what you're thinking
Catch the snow on your tongue
and show me how it tastes

Take my hand
and if I'm lying to you
I'll always be alone
if I'm lying to you
Take your time
and if I'm lying to you
I know you'll find that you believe me
you believe me

#7 - I Have Nothing