Somebody Needs You


Tucking the towel around her head a little tighter she checked the way that her other towel was pulled around her body then paused to look around the room for a second.  She felt as if her brain wasn't clicking into everything just yet.  She'd come out of the bathroom to get her clothes, but all of a sudden she didn't know what to wear.  She'd packed more than a few choices thinking that it might help her, but now the thought of choosing was giving her a headache.  "Lance do you know what your mom and Stacy are wearing to the game today?"

"The Skills thing?" he asked as he dropped his towel and pulled on a pair of green and gray stripped boxers.

"Yeah," she said trying to keep her eyes off him.  They'd been in the shower together and had managed not to molest each other too much, but the sight of him being so comfortable with her around made her start to think that they were more of a couple than they were, which only made her want to act like they were in a movie and kiss him every two seconds.  "Or whatever we're going to today."

"Hell if I know.  Probably just jeans or shorts or something," he said.  He threw his towel over his shoulder and walked back towards the bathroom, hanging it up over the edge of the shower door.  "I don't know wear whatever... it doesn't matter..."

"It DOES matter," she pouted stubbornly and moved across the room, opening up the top cover of her bag to find something to wear.

"Why?" he asked.  He stopped and looked at the top of his dresser for a moment and shook his head as if he couldn't remember what he was looking for then reached for the watch he'd been wearing the night before at the airport.

"Because if you hadn't noticed I'm about to meet all your friends and hell half the country and while you're out there running around everyone in the place is gonna be staring at the family section of the bleachers wondering who I am and when I show up in fluorescent green shoes and an orange and yellow tank top--"

"Half the country?"  He sighed.  "It's really not that big of a deal."

"Yeah just an event with 10 million of your biggest fans focusing on me and wondering what the hell made you want to date me in the first place..."  She sighed and turned around to face him.  "You forget Dani and I talk!"

Lance laughed more and walked over to hug her. "You are beautiful wear whatever you feel comfortable in."

"I should have known better asking a man for help on what to wear..." As Colleen trailed off Lance walked away from her.

He ended up near her suitcase and magically pulled out a pair of khaki Capri pants and a white tank top and threw it over to her. "Wear this. You might want to bring a sweater or sweatshirt incase it gets chilly in the arena though."

Colleen grabbed the clothes so that they wouldn't wrinkle then escaped into the bathroom.

When she got into the bathroom she realized that she didn't have any underwear or bra.


"Lance?"

"What do you need Sugar?"  He was standing in front of his dresser mirror running his hands through his hair, opting to not spend that much time on it figuring that when he got into the game it would get messed up anyway.  He normally would have cared, but that weekend it was all about being natural, or as natural as he could be in front of about ten thousand people, like Colleen had so kindly reminded him of.

He could see her leaning out of the bathroom looking at him.  Her hair hung over her shoulder and he could almost see the curve of her breast from the way she was using the door to protect her modesty.  What she didn't know was that he could see the rest of her naked body behind her in the mirror over the sink.  "Ummm I kind of forgot to bring my underwear and bra with me can you grab them for me?"

"Why don't you just come back out here and get them?" he asked.  He smiled. "Or better yet, don't remember them at all."

"I just put on lotion and I already took off my towel and--"  She narrowed her eyes.  "I'm not gonna go in there with my boobs all poking out all over the place."  She pointed at him.  "Don't go there Lance.  We don't have time to even think about me and my boobs until tonight."  She ducked back in the room a moment later and he saw her brushing her chair.  "You probably haven't looked at your itinerary for the day since you sent it to me.  I'm surprised that they let you have this morning off."

Lance walked over to her suitcase and began to look through to find her undergarments.  In his mind she wasn't as pretty when she was slightly nagging him.  He knew it was just her way of dealing with the pressure, all girls did the same thing, micromanaging everything up until their first outing with him, then they seemed to see that it wasn't a big deal and would calm down.  He tried not to seem too put out by her request.  Knowing that she was in the other room and naked could have been used to his advantage, but being just a half hour away from having to pack up and get into the car to go downtown, it wasn't time to think about extra curricular activities.

"Where are they?" he asked moving some things around without trying to think about what he might find in the suitcase.

"On the right side underneath my green tank top."  She snuck back into the bathroom.  "Pick out something white so I don't have bra lines."

His hands landed on a tiny white lace thong first.  He wasn't sure if that was the underwear that she was asking about, but he wasn't about to pass up a chance to know that she was wearing them all day long.   He quickly pulled that out and dove back in for what he figured was the matching bra.  He'd always known that girls were all about matching everything.  Normally he'd found out they didn't care, but if they were going on a trip of any kind, even if it was just overnight, they always had to have everything color coordinated.

"Did you find them?" she asked.

"Uhhh," he picked out a white one that looked like it was probably the match to it and then moved to the door to hand them over.  "Here you go."

She took the garments from him and made eye contact with him.  "You would be the one to pick these out.  I was gonna wear these tonight, but I guess--"

"Why not wear nothing tonight instead?" He gave a hopeful look.

She laughed and blushed and pulled herself back into the bathroom.  "I'll be out in a minute Lance."

"Ok," he shrugged and found shorts to put on.  At the arena he'd change into the blue and white uniform of his team so until then he could basically wear whatever he wanted.

"Do I need to bring anything with me?" she asked, "Like money or whatever?"

"Nope," he said and went into the closet to find his backpack.  He wouldn't need much, but he thought he'd bring an extra pair of clothes with him in case they decided to go over to Johnny's or go get something to eat before they went over to the party that night.

"Are you sure?" she asked.

"Yeah," he said, "Everything is gonna be catered today and if you need anything I'll just have them charge it to me."

"Are you sure?" she asked.

"Yeah."

"I just don't want to feel like I'm mooching off you."

"You insisted on getting your own flight," he said, "That's--"

"I fly free honey."

He laughed, "Well it saved me a few hundred bucks either way so it's all good."

"So what's the plan for the day," she asked coming out of the bathroom.

He turned to look at her and found himself caught staring.

"What?" she asked.  She was finishing braiding her hair into two braids, one that lay over each shoulders and with a pair of glasses that had appeared from somewhere she looked more like Pippy Longstocking than what he would have figured.  "I don't look stupid do I?"

"No," he said remembering that underneath that innocent look lay the see through bra and white thong that he'd handed her to wear that day.  "Not at all."

"Good," she said.

"What's with the glasses?" he asked.

"I don't know," she said, "It's a different look and I didn't have to pay a few thousand dollars for the new look."

"What?"

"Never mind," she said with a sigh.  "I shouldn't say that.  God knows who might have fake--"  She pointed at her breasts.  "--tatas around here."

"Ta-tas?" he asked.

"Yeah," she said.

"Well I like your Tata's so don't go changing them."

She nodded and saluted.

"You ready?"

"Yeah," she said and looked down, "But I think you're forgetting something."

He smiled and leaned and kissed her.  "Better?"


The hallway was crowded and confusing and as they made their way in from the car he looked around for a familiar face.  He'd spent fifteen or twenty minutes next to the barriers outside signing autographs, but now that they were inside he needed to get down to business and make his way to where he needed to be.  He knew that he needed to get to work and leave her to have a good time, but he didn't want to just drop her in the middle of this chaos to find her own way.  "We should get you out to the stands so I can go change."

"Ok," she said squeezing his hand as he held it, "I can find my way.  I think they gave me everything I need."  She held up the little plastic press pass that had a pocket with all her ticketing information in it that Loni had handed them earlier.  The guard had disappeared for a minute to check on some last minute security information that he needed leaving them in the fairly secure hallway with the other stars that had been invited to the weekend. 

"I don't want you to go out there by yourself," he said.

"Whatever," she sighed, "Just point the way or find--"

Lance turned just in time to see Dani's pony tail bouncing by them.  "Dani!"

She turned around and smiled when she saw it was him that had called.  Instantly she was at his side giving him a half hug.  "Hey Lance."

"Where are the other guys?"

"In the green room getting ready.  I got that jersey you needed."

"Did it come out ok?"

"Yep."

Lance pulled away from her.  "I'm sorry.  You remember Colleen--I think you guys saw each other in New York in the hotel didn't you?"

"Of course."  Dani pulled her into a hug and spoke in a low voice.  "I'm glad you made it out to the game."

"I thought you were from LA?" Dani asked looking at her closely.

"I am," Colleen said, "I first met you in New York."

"Yeah," she said, "I remember that--"  She elbowed her in the stomach a little.  "Had to save you from the teenies."

"Yep."

"LANCE!"

"Shit," he sighed.  "I gotta run in there and get changed.  Can you take Colleen out to the stands?  She should be by my mom and dad and the rest of the crew, but I don't want her to get lost."

"Sure," Dani said, "What about her jersey?"

"Jersey?" Colleen asked, "I didn't know I had to wear a uniform."  She turned to Lance.  "I'm really not that great at sports."

"No," Dani said, "It's tradition.  The guys and girls always get jerseys."  She pulled a shirt from behind her and brought it out to show her.  It said DOC across it and she had the number 3 across the back.

"Doc?"

"My initials are DR so they call me Doc sometimes," she said.

"Who's got Colleen's shirt?" Lance asked.

"I'll find it.  I think Loni grabbed it."

Lance looked over Dani's shoulder.  "Speak of the Devil."

Loni came walking towards them with a shirt flung over his shoulder.  He held it out to Lance.  "Boss-man you need to get into the green room with the other guys.  Everyone else is already in there."

"Ok."  He leaned and kissed her cheek and handed her the shirt.  "I'll see you during the break.  Dani will show you where to go."

"Thank you."

"I'll see you out there."

Her first reaction was to turn the shirt around to look at it.  She didn't really have a nickname with Lance other than Sugar so she was curious to what he'd picked for her.

"Wonderland?" she asked looking over the name and the 90210 number across the back.

"Yeah," he said.  He came closer to her and whispered, "Your body is my wonderland."  His tongue touched her earlobe and he pulled back and put a finger to his lips.  "Don't tell anyone."

"Ok."

As he left her standing there he could already hear Dani asking her about the shirt.  He knew it was dangerous to show that personal of a nickname, but he wanted to show her that he cared about her somehow.


"You didn't bring a sign," Dani joked sitting next to her.

Instantly she felt like she'd done something wrong.  It was the same kind of thing that had happened in the hallway when Dani and tried to get in the elevator with the guys in New York.  "What?"  She looked around to see if anyone else had signs with them.

"A sign."  Dani pointed around and soon she was noticing all the people in the arena with homemade signs.

She hadn't really had a chance to look around until then.  She'd been watching people in the crowd in front of her, then her feet on the stairs up to the fifth row from courtside then she had to pay attention to all the people that she was introduced to before Brianna had crawled up into her lap to sit with her.  "How many people are here?" she asked, whispering as if someone might hear how scared she had suddenly become.

Dani shrugged.  She looked around the huge room, completely comfortable with everyone around them.  "Probably about ten thousand."

"Sweetie," Kelly said reaching over to Brianna to hand her a box of animal crackers.  She looked at Colleen's face for a moment and smiled.  "Look at the signs.  It doesn't look so big that way.  Besides, you might find something funny to laugh at."

Her eyes scanned the crowd while Brianna opened up her box of crackers.

A laugh escaped her lips as she read everything to herself.

"I Wanna Be Your GIRLFRIEND."

"Back that B-ASS up!"

"OH MY GOD."  Colleen sighed and laughed at the sign as she read it.  "Lance's Baby's Momma."

"What?" Dani asked.

She chose to point to the sign instead of reading it.

"Hmm," Dani said, "Hmmm...right."

"NSYNC DRIVES ME CRAZY!"

It was when she had the binoculars in her hands and looking around the place that she noticed a few "JC's Giddy Up Girls" t-shirts and six girls each with one letter of the NSYNC name across their chests with a person wearing the apostraphy at the beginning of the line.

"These girls are nuts," Colleen said.

"Diddy--"  Brianna took a bite of cookie.  "Diddy say dis girls awr LowCow in da head."

"LowCow?"

"Joey says that they are Loca en la Cabesa," Kelly explained.  "That's the spanish and g-rated version of what he normally swears at them in Italian sometimes, but Brianna started to mimic him so he had to clean up his act."

"Diddy say a big mouf," Brianna took another bite of cookie then started to cough.

Kelly handed her a bottled water.  "You don't have to hold her if you don't want to."

Colleen moved a little to see Brianna's face and smiled at the little girl.  "It's ok."

When a harsh whistle pierced the air she looked around.

"Your man is paging you," Dani said.

"What do I do?" she asked sounding completely stupid.

"Give Brianna to me and go see him."

Colleen made her way down to the floor of the arena and put her uniform jersey on as she went, meting up with Lance at the edge of the parkay floor.  "You wanna dance?" he asked.

"What?"

"There's part of this where I have to line dance with someone."

"Line dance?"

"I'll teach you," he said.  He took her hand and started to walk the other way.

"Are you sure?"

"Yeah,"  he said, "Come on."

Her eyes moved around the crowd and found more than a few strange looks being given to her.  "Are you really sure?"

"Yes."  He led her over to another group of girls.  "Girls this is Colleen.  She's gonna be my partner when we dance and she doesn't know how to line dance so can you teach her so while we're waiting for the start?"

"SURE," they echoed.

She quickly counted the number of people and found that she was the tenth girl there.  She would have wondered if it really was something serious for her to be there, but when they pulled her into the group to learn the steps her mind were more on her feet than on the other people in the arena with her.

As the competitions began she watched Lance carefully.  He'd had the name "SQUARE" as the nickname on his back with a zip code length number on her back which she soon found was the Jackson, Mississippi zip code.

It was strange to be there and in the middle of everything, but with all the games going the way they were with everyone screaming for their favorite team and laughing at the guys as they tripped their way through the first levels of an obstacle course there wasn't anything to do but love the way things were going for her and Lance.


She swung his hand a little in hers then bumped into his arm a little to get his attention.  "I'm gonna go grab a water or something.  Do you want anything?"

He nodded no and leaned to kiss her cheek.  "Make sure you get back here before the break is over or the guys won't let you back up there."

She nodded and smiled at him and turned her back to walk down towards the backroom where the catering table that had been set up earlier for all of them when she heard someone female call out his name.  She been good so far in curbing her jealousy towards other women talking to him, but the sound of urgency in her voice for some reason made her turn around again.

"Lance!"

Her eyes turned towards the woman approaching them and she put on a smile. At this point in the day she didn't have a clue who anyone was or what anyone did in relation to Lance.  There were too many family members, WEG employees, record label people, and fans talking to him to keep it all straight in her head, but it seemed as if her smile and semi interest in what they were talking about was getting her through the afternoon.

"Patty."  She heard the change in the tone of his voice and also felt his hand slid into a different position to hold hers, not letting her go when she wanted to leave.

While he'd been talking to reporters he'd crossed his arms across his chest. When he'd talked to record label people he'd kept an arm around her back to keep her near by.  With the fans he'd hooked a finger through her belt loop for only a moment before his hands were taken up with signing autographs and moving around so that he could get his picture taken.  This was the first time that day, since they'd walked into the arena together, that he'd made the motion of holding onto her hand, not just to show her the way through the crowd, but to show some sort of possession over her.  He'd been holding onto her palm for most of the time as he guided her, but now he'd locked her fingers with his as if she might slip away if he didn't.

The woman's eyes scanned over Lance, down his arm and landed on their fingers.  She paused to take a breath as if she didn't know how to react to the situation then smiled, but didn't take her eyes off their hands.

"I was wondering if Gabby could maybe have lunch with you one of the days while we're down here."

"Umm--"

"Lance you're so rude not introducing me to your--" She licked her lips and moved her sunglasses a little on her head.  "--friend."

Colleen didn't like the look she was given and moved closer to Lance, hugging his arm again the way she had been a little while earlier.  She didn't want to be the clingy type, but the woman in front of her wasn't giving either of them any choice but to stake territory on each other.

"Babe," she said hating instantly that she sounded like a Valley-girl.  "I'm gonna go and get some water.  Are you sure you don't want any?"

It took him a moment to form words, but soon he answered with a slightly cry sounding voice.  "If you're going back to the green room can you get me a gatorade?"

"Sure," she said.

Before she left she planted the final blow to the situation.  She moved to kiss him and made the kiss more passionate than normal, keeping her eyes open to look into his before she moved away from him.  That look between them lasted only moments, but she hoped it said enough to him.  It wasn't that she wanted to be clingy or show off, but just the way he'd hung onto her hand for dear life made her want to reassure him that things were ok and that she wasn't going to abandon him and leave him to the wolf of a woman in front of him.

"I'll be right back," she said and finally slid out of his grip.  He watched her until she turned and headed back towards the green room.

When she was around the corner and out of sight she let herself relax.  Her brain wasn't on getting herself a drink, or even walking for that matter and she found herself literally bumping into Chris as she neared the green room.

"Watch it girly," he said, "I know I'm a little pudgy and you can bounce off me, but some of these guys back here will take that bump as something else."

"Sorry," she said in a daze.

"Are you ok?" Dani asked, somehow appeared in front of her.

"Yeah," Colleen moved her hands through her hair and took a deep breath.  "Yeah.  I guess.  I just had the--"  She looked around for a minute.  "I just had a totally girly jealousy moment and I'm just--"  She sighed. "--confused."

"Who was it?"

She cocked her head to the side and looked out at her with one eye. "Patty?"

"OH MY GOD."  Dani grabbed her wrist and and pulled her back towards where she'd come from.

"Hey!"  Chris yelled.

Dani turned back around and smacked a kiss on his lips.  "I love you baby. I'll find you after the second half of this.  We have to go rescue your sister from your mother and take her over to Tiffany's house for that sleepover tonight."

"Ok," Chris said with a dazed look that mirrored Colleen's previous look.

Dani was pulling her down the hall again before she could say anything more to Chris.

"Wait," she said slowing to a stop.  "Let me at least get the drink I wanted and he wanted so I don't look like I went to tattle on him."

"Right," Dani said and turned the other way and went into the green room.

"Why are you all hyper all of a sudden?" Colleen asked.

"Remember how I told you about Patty, the one that ran--"

"THAT was her?" Colleen groaned.  "I never should have acted like such an ass."

"What'd you do?"

"Nothing that bad,"  She sighed, "I just acted like a teenie bopper trying to make my mark on my man."  She covered her face.  "I must have looked like an idiot!"

"You didn't," Dani said, "Patty is just like that.  She is super agressive and can make ANYONE feel bad.  She totally flirted with Lance for weeks and then up and left the tour taking--"  Dani sighed and grabbed a drink as Colleen did. "I just know that I don't like her.  I love her kid, but I HATE her."

"I hope I didn't screw up.  I don't want to be the clingy girlfriend."

"You are such a worrier.  Don't worry about that," Dani said as they walked back out of the green room.  "You just need to make sure that you make it clear to her that she isn't going to get away with this."

"Away with what?" Colleen asked.

"Away with screwing around with Lance's head.  He was totally messed up over her because she was this motherly type girl and he wanted to be with her, but she couldn't be honest with him so she screwed around with him then left for Europe."


"So," Patty said leaning a little to look passed him.  "What's up with her?"

"Who?"

"Her?" Patty said giving him the strangest look.

"Colleen?" he asked turning a little to see if she was still behind him. "She and I started to date awhile ago."

"Date?" she asked and laughed a little.  "You're dating?"

"Yeah." he crossed his arms across his chest and corrected himself, "I guess dating makes her sound less important then she is.  Colleen is my girlfriend."

"Girlfriend?"

"Yeah," he said, "Why the hell is it that everyone looks at me like I'm crazy when I say that?"

"So what was I?" she asked.

Lance saw Loni down the hall talking with Gritty, who he hadn't seen in months, but he had a feeling that he was there to be with Patty, but more practically to get an excuse to visit everyone.

Patty moved so that she was back in his line of vision and coughed.  "So how'd you too meet?"

"Traveling-"  He wasn't sure what had happened to her, but this wasn't someone that he'd like to be with.  He knew that she was a very forward person, but she seemed to be more on the bitchy side than the aggressive side that afternoon.  "How does Gabby like her new school?"

He could see the anger in her face when she wasn't getting her questions answered.  "She is doing really well.  She has made a few friends.  She misses you though.  So how long have you two been together?"

"Awhile-"  He tried not to be too obvious about changing the subject, but he couldn't stomach the idea of talking to her about them.  He didn't have clue what to call their friendship/relationship and maybe it was better that he wasn't thinking twice about it.  "Is she doing well in science? I thought she was doing good before you...left."

"Gabby's science teacher said that she must have had a good teacher cause she is more advanced then the other--" Patty's question feel on deaf ears.

"Oh my God.  Patty.  Is that you?"  Dani said coming up to them.  She pushed her way to stand in between them for a minute.  "I don't know if you remember me, but I totally remember you and-"  She looked around a little. "Where's that little one of yours?  Isn't her name Gabby?"

Lance sighed and watched Dani at work.  His shoulder had started to hurt a little from the stress of having to deal with her, but his mind seemed to ignore it long enough to watch the protective side of Dani come out.  It was a real piece of drama unfolding in front of him.  He'd always known that she had a knack for the dramatics, but this was something to see. 

"Hey," he heard next to him and felt an arm curl around him.  A bottle of blue Gatorade was pressed into his hand and he sighed as Colleen came to lean against him.  He moved so that his arm was around her and she smiled up at him.  "Is blue ok?"

"Hey," he said.  He could feel the stress leave him.  "Yeah.  Did you get what you wanted?"

Holding up the bottle she nodded and kept her eyes on him.  "I told her not to make a big deal of things, but it seems that Dani-"

"Lance?" Patty said, "Can you please get whoever this is out of my face?"

Dani backed up a little.  "Where's Reese when we need him?  Or maybe security?  You like those guys a lot I heard."

Patty put a hand on her hip.  "Excuse me?"

"You always seemed to be into disappearing in the past, you should use that trick-"  She stopped and backed away from Patty.  "Hi Gabby.  Hi Farzana."

"Hello," the girls said in unison joining the small group in the hallway.

"Lance!"  Gabby yelled as she flung her arms around him pushing herself in between everyone to hug him, pushing Colleen away a little.

"Gabby that wasn't very nice," Lance said.

The little girl smiled up at him and then looked at Colleen.  "I'm sorry."

"It's ok," she said, "He's good at hugs."

"Gabby I want you to meet Colleen, my girlfriend."  He pointed towards Gabby.  "This is Gabby-guitar stringer extroidinaire."

"Really?" Colleen asked.  "You really string guitars for a living?"

"Yeah," she said, "Dad pays me for working on Joe's Guitars, but I'm not
allowed to touch his stage set.  Those are too much money."

Colleen gave her best this-is-me-looking-interested expression, something she'd mastered that day and smiled.  "Joe who?"

"Satrinani," Lance said, "Reese works with Joe in the studio."

"I'm more of a John Mayer girl myself," Colleen said with a smile looking at him.

He leaned and kissed her cheek.  "I know you are."
 
"John Mayer!!! He's AWESOME" Gabby laughed.

Patty pulled Gabby back over to her and put her hand on her daughter's shoulders.  "Oh god don't get her started... I swear that is all I hear..."

"John Mayer is very talented Gabby... he is also a cool guy. Colleen and I went to his concert on our first date."

 


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