Fandom: JoBros RPF
Title: Living the Dream Ch.7 (Book Three of the Entire Series To Understand Our Love)
Pairings: Joe/Nick, Kevin/Danny (other incidental pairings that aren't as important)
Rating: This chapter PG-13, NC-17 (entire fic)
Warnings: This chapter; incest Entire Fic: incest, alcohol abuse, implied "accidental" self-harm
Summary: This is pretty much still about what it was about before. A long rambling fic about Nick and Joe and their FEELINGS, and how they deal with it all.
To Start from the VERY BEGINNING, go HERE.
May 17th 2008
Joe is enjoying a fairly lazy morning on the tour bus, happily munching away on his Cap’n Crunch Crunch Berries and watching the milk turn a weird shade of purple, when he hears the front door open. His heart starts jack-rabbiting in his chest in a completely involuntary reaction to the knowledge that Nick is back. It can’t be anyone else, he knows. Everyone but Nick went to breakfast, leaving a note for Joe to read when he woke up. They’d stopped because Frankie wanted Diner food for breakfast, and Dad had business to take care of, as usual. He knows Nick didn’t go, though, because his mom wrote the note, and he has a bleary memory of Nick’s warm, slightly chapped lips against his forehead and a whispered “I’ll be back around noon.”
It’s stupid to be so excited to see him when he sees him every day. They literally spend almost every waking moment together, and even some sleeping ones, but Joe’s lazy morning has been a little lonely without Nick’s shuffling beside him. Without Nick’s hand on his back directing his stumbling steps to the kitchenette, or his arm around his waist as Joe makes them scrambled eggs.
Joe quickly finishes the last of his cereal so he can slurp up the milk as Nick walks in. He knows how much it bugs him and he can’t resist the familiar big brother urge to torment. No matter how old they get, it will never not be funny when Nick gets that pinched up, disapproving look on his face, like he’s sucking on something sour.
He gets into position, bowl tipped toward his face and milk halfway to his slips and as soon as Nick walks in he-
Joe nearly spills milk all over himself in his surprise, spitting a bit onto his shirt and getting it all over his mouth instead of into it.
Nick smirks and snorts unattractively as he passes by to go toward the back of the bus, and Joe carefully, slowly sets his bowl down on the table before getting up and following Nick to the back lounge. He sees Nick rooting around in his stuff, searching for another t-shirt, maybe. He picks out a black one that’s old and worn, and more of a grey than anything after being washed so many times. He gives it to Joe, nodding at his ruined shirt with a spark of humor in his eyes, and Joe can barely open his mouth to tell him that he doesn’t really wear that t-shirt anywhere but to bed as it kinda doesn’t fit anymore, because he’s too fascinated by Nick’s hair….or lack thereof, really.
Nick cut his hair.
Nick cut his hair.
Joe brings a slightly uncoordinated hand up to his face to wipe the sleep out of his eyes and make sure he’s seeing right.
Granted it’s not the first time Nick has cut his hair. It happens. His curls grow unbelievably quickly and their Mom is always telling him he needs a haircut, and Nick usually ignores her because that’s just never the first thing on his mind. He’s too busy in the studio, or talking business with Dad, or…with Joe (the thought makes him smile).
But this is the first time he’s ever come back with it a lot shorter. A lot shorter. Shorter than it’s ever been.
Joe can’t help but run his fingers through the shock of shiny brown curls on his brother’s head. They left a bit of length on the top in the front but it’s just….Joe doesn’t even know what it is.
At the same time, kinda hot? Like….Nick looks good. He looks really good. And it’s so…unexpected.
I mean, sure Joe loves his brother. Has loved his brother forever, has wanted his brother since he understood what wanting was, but it’s always been sort of an extension of his feelings for him. Joe’s always thought Nick was beautiful in every way, and he’s always wanted to get closer to that, to be closer to him because of it.
But this might be the first time he’s looking at Nick and thinking…God, he’s hot.
Nick looks sexy. And that’s kind of new, and terrifying, and really really bad for Joe’s impulse control.
“Um…it’s really short.”
Nick smiles slightly, raising one eyebrow, and says simply, “It was time.”
“Yeah,” Joe says nonsensically.
Nick puts the shirt he was trying to hand to Joe (which Joe has yet to take) onto the couch, and makes to pull off Joe’s milk covered t-shirt himself.
Joe jumps slightly at the hot touch of his fingers against his bare skin as he drags the shirt up and over his head.
“You okay?” Nick asks, curious smile on his face. “You seem a little out of it.”
He passes Joe the shirt again, and Joe takes it this time, but does absolutely nothing with it. He just…can’t stop looking at him. He looks so…mature, just a bit older with his hair like that. And Joe can see his face now, or better than before, and his ears. Joe brings up a finger to softly trace the outside of one of his brother’s ears. He slides his hand to the back of Nick’s neck, now naked and vulnerable to touch, the smooth skin so much easier to access now that he doesn’t have to search for it under piles of soft curls.
He pulls Nick forward with that hand on his neck and kisses him lightly, just a simple touch of lips, but it sparks something deep inside him that warms him up and makes his blood sing.
When he pulls back Nick just stares at him for a minute, his gaze penetrating and serious, probably remembering that they’re still trying to keep things tame and simple. Then a smile slowly makes its way across his face.
“You like it.”
“Mmmm,” Joe hums in the affirmative.
Nick pulls him forward this time, with two hands at his hips, and kisses him slow and sweet, but deep, tongue searching and twining around his own.
Joe moans. He can’t help himself. The sound just pushes its way up from his chest, strangled and broken, and he shivers at how thoroughly Nick is kissing him right now. It’s not rushed, and there’s little urgency in it, but the languid pace is slowly driving Joe insane, and when Nick sucks on his tongue once, twice, three times before biting his lip Joe’s legs nearly give out on him. He whimpers, and Nick pulls back to look at him.
“Jesus, Nick. God.” Joe leans his forehead against his brother’s shoulder and tries to breathe.
Nick just chuckles a little and runs his hands up and down Joe’s sides. He’s sure the touch is meant to be soothing, but he’s yet to put that t-shirt on still, so all it does is make him want even more of Nick to touch him.
“I’m…gonna pull away now, and put on my shirt, and then I’m going to die.” Joe doesn’t wait for an answer from his brother before answering himself with “Okay, great plan,” and moving to do just that.
Nick let’s go of him with an easy laugh, squatting down to eye-level once Joe’s sat down on the couch and leaning in to kiss him again. Quicker this time, and much more comforting and settling than anything.
“Niiiiiick.” Joe takes hold of his brother’s hands as he whines, tangling their fingers together and pulling him forward to straddle him. He just wants to be close to him, that’s all. He just…always needs to be near him.
Nick obliges and sits, his body a warm, comforting weight holding Joe down.
Joe swallows back a stupid spike of nervousness and just blurts it out. “You look sexy and I don’t know how to handle it.”
Joe isn’t sure how he does it, but somehow his brother’s smile manages to be both smug and shy at the same time.
“I’m glad. You need a taste of your own medicine.”
“What?” Joe is actually confused.
“Most of the time you’re just…y’know…Joe.”
“Yeah, and you’re Nick, kind of all of the time.”
Nick just continues, ignoring Joe’s quip.
“Right, but sometimes, and more and more these days…you’re not just Joe, you’re…Joe.”
And if Nick thinks that that makes sense at all, then they have a real communication problem on their hands.
“I don’t follow.”
Nick rolls his eyes. “What happened just now? When you saw me…what did you feel?”
Joe takes a minute. “Um…” He can feel his cheeks getting warm, and hopes he’s not blushing nearly as much as he thinks he might be. It’s so ridiculous that this stuff still gets him like this. Nick’s had his fingers in places that most people never even think about, and Joe can’t even talk about how he makes him feel?
Nick just sits there, looking at him and waiting for a response, and well…Joe’s not even going to pretend to try and say no to him, so…he’ll just have to push through it.
“I felt…turned on, hehe,” he starts with an awkward laugh.
“Is that it?” Nick doesn’t look surprised or disappointed with his answer, just curious and perceptive, like he knows that isn’t all there is to it.
“No. I was also…a little sad, because it felt like I was losing something, I guess? I was kind of scared, a bit confused, and super overwhelmed? Yeah, overwhelmed, definitely, like…there was just so much that I felt for you and I wanted you so much, and it was kind of new, because I’ve loved you forever, but I wanted you sort of as an afterthought?”
Afterthought isn’t really what he means, but it’s getting more and more difficult to describe as he keeps talking. He stops short, hoping he didn’t offend Nick with the word, but there’s no sign of anger on Nick’s face and he nods like he understands so Joe keeps talking.
“It’s just…I don’t know, want has never been the first thing that I felt when I looked at you, but today…” Joe trails off, not able to articulate it any better, and not really wanting to botch it up in an attempt to. He feels a soft touch at his chin, drawing his attention back to the present moment, back to Nick’s eyes, direct and warm, boring into his.
“That exact feeling is what I feel when I look at you sometimes. And lately it’s more times than not, I look at you and I feel that instead of what I used to feel, which was a whole lot less complicated. I don’t know whether it’s because we’ve been talking things out with Doc, or whether it’s just more because we’ve set up rules against being together, or if it was just inevitable but…it’s there.”
“Is it freaking you out?”
“A little, yeah” Nick chuckles out. “It kind of always has, I just…ignored it. But the want isn’t bad…just different.”
“Right. We can do different, right?” Joe says, squeezing at Nick’s lean hips in slight anxiousness.
“Well, I don’t really have much of a choice. I’m not planning on going anywhere. Are you?”
Joe hears the challenge in his voice, and is reminded of what happened the last time he felt unsure of them. At how he ran, and broke them, and hurt Nick and he’s afraid that Nick thinks he’ll do it again. He’s afraid Nick doesn’t trust that he won’t do it again, but Nick smiles like he already knows Joe’s answer is no.
He’s not wrong, of course.
“Hell, No. I’m staying right here.” Joe leans forward and pecks him on the lips again, pulling back to look Nick in the eye as he says, “I really like the haircut, though.”
Nick grins, eyes brightening ridiculously when he says, “So do I.”
Joe wraps his arms around Nick’s waist and just…holds him close until their family gets back.
May 19th 2008
Nick touches his knee to Joe’s lightly as he turns his head to look out of the window at the rising sun. They’re on their way from LAX to the set of Burnin’ Up.
They’re filming today and Nick is pumped. He kind of always is when they’re filming because it gives him a chance to be someone other than himself for a little while which is freeing in a way that a lot of his day to day isn’t. They always have a good time on set, and Nick always leaves feeling super accomplished. This time, though, he’s even more excited about the video than he normally is. Joe doesn’t know the premise yet. Nick and Kevin had started the planning without him when Joe was still avoiding him, so they just decided to mutually keep it a secret and surprise Joe on the set at the very last minute. The action star spoof was Kev’s idea, but choosing Miami Vice for Joe was all Nick, and he can’t wait to see the look on his brother’s face when they hand him the mustache.
He doesn’t really get star struck like Joe, but it’ll be really cool to meet all of the cameos. He knows Joe will be especially excited about Danny Trejo. Nick’s more excited to see Selena, if he’s completely honest with himself. They’d met briefly while filming the first parts of Camp Rock when she visited Demi, and she seemed awesome. It didn’t hurt that she was kind of gorgeous as well, but…that’s neither here nor there for him at the moment. He and Joe haven’t talked about how they’re going to handle them yet; about monogamy, and beards, and PDA. None of it sits right with Nick, anyway. They’ve mostly just been working on trying to get back to a better place between them, trying to learn how to be together again, and ignore those seeds of doubt that remain planted in the backs of their minds and creep up on them every once in a while. It’s been slow going, but Nick finally feels like they’re okay for now. After talking to Doc and starting to break down his feelings instead of stubbornly ignoring anything that might separate him from his brother, he’s starting to realize just how difficult this all has to have been for Joe.
He knows he’s good at ignoring things when he needs to, it’s not completely dissimilar to Joe’s occasional tunnel vision, and mostly he’s had to ignore the bad of him and Joe just to get by. He loves his brother. And he’s never going to not love his brother. After accepting that, he had to either act like the problem didn’t exist or deal with it, and there is no real way to deal with it other than not being with Joe. Their options are really limited, he knows. Or at least…who they are makes their options limited. Nick isn’t prepared to give any of it up, not Joe, and certainly not the Jonas Brothers. So he shoves it all away and back, back to the dark parts of his mind that he tries not to visit too often, and just…keeps living his life, doing everything in his power to keep them from falling apart.
Part of that, lately, seems to be letting himself watch Joe and enjoy what he sees.
They’re on set, now, he, Joe, and Kev settling down onto the pool loungers and having a pretty light-hearted conversation about the video, jumping from topic to topic in their excitement.
“Dude, I can’t believe you let me be Sonny Crockett!” Joe can’t stop smiling, and it’s kind of infectious, so Nick doesn’t try to stop his own.
“You love Miami Vice.”
“I know, but…”
“And tell me the mustache isn’t calling out to you right now,” Kevin inserts teasingly.
“It so is, I’m not even gonna lie.”
Nick smiles wider, happy he could make his lover happy. It’s weird that it sneaks up on him in moments like this, when Joe is grinning unbelievably wide and the sun hits his sparkling eyes just right, that he’s more lover than brother right now. Both, always, but what Nick wants to do to that smile is infinitely outside of the bounds of ‘brotherly’ contact. He tries to slide his gaze away from Joe’s lips, but only ends up staring at the triangle of skin at the base of his throat that peeks out of the slightly unbuttoned polo that he’s wearing. There’s sweat gathering there because it’s hot, and Joe already runs pretty warm, and Nick wants to lick it away-
Kevin clears his throat loudly, and Nick is reminded of where he is.
Nick squints over at Kevin, unsure as to why his brother felt the need to state the obvious.
Kevin rolls his eyes. “Have you talked to her yet?”
It was a whirlwind when they got there because they’d arrived a bit late, not having adjusted their departure time for LA traffic. They’d all been hustled to wardrobe and make up in a hurry.
“Yeah, briefly, before Big Rob literally carried me away to wardrobe. Why?”
“Nothing, it just seemed like you guys hit it off last year, when you met.”
“Yeah, we did,” Nick says a bit hesitantly, shooting Joe a look out of the corner of his eye. Joe’s not looking at him, and to anyone else he seems relaxed, but Nick knows him, is starting to know his body language even better than before, and he was pretty good at deciphering it already. Joe’s tapping on the chair underneath him with two fingers and biting his bottom lip in worry.
Nick tries to send Kevin a look, like, “okay, change the subject now”, but he must not be as good as Nick at the body language thing because he just says,
“She seems into you.”
“Ahhh, eheh,” Nick laughs uncomfortably. “I’m pretty sure she’s dating someone, Kev.”
“Really? That’s not the vibe I got when I saw you guys talk. She was always fiddling with her hair and laughing at all of your jokes, and no offense, Nicky, but we both know you’re not that funny.”
Joe is beginning to frown, and Nick knows it’s not because of the not funny comment because he’d have just laughed at that.
“Well, even if she isn’t dating anyone, we’re going on tour soon right? Wouldn’t want to start anything I couldn’t finish.”
Joe tenses up even further, his shoulders hunching in on themselves as if in defense, his knuckles almost turning white where he’s now gripping the edge of the lounger.
“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with-” Kevin begins. But Nick cuts him short with a quelling look.
“She’s out of my league,” Nick says to lighten the mood again.
“Yeah, you’re probably right,” Kev says.
And then the conversation is over, and they move on to talking about baseball stats and how they miss playing over the summer in little league, and what they’re going to order for lunch.
It still takes a full ten minutes for Joe to start joining in the conversation again.
Joe is absolutely ridiculous during filming, and the first time he starts combing the mustache while cutting the blue wire, the entire set breaks out into hysterics.
Nick can’t help the giggles that escape. Joe has always been able to make him laugh with the stupidest things, and this is no exception.
Selena raises an eyebrow at him in good humor when she first notices him losing his actual shit over his brother. Then she smiles at him charmingly.
“Your brother’s a riot.”
“Isn’t he, though?”
“I never talked to him much when I visited Demz. He always seemed so…volatile?”
The word seems an odd description for Joe, so Nick can’t help but ask.
“In what way?”
“I don’t know, like…the times you and me would hang out with Dem, he was never there, but when you weren’t there he would stick to Demi like glue. He’d be insane on set, like bouncing everywhere, and causing a ruckus, kind of like now. Of course you always humored him.” She shoots Nick a look out of the corner of her eye at that. “But sometimes I would look at him and he’d have this odd look on his face, like…I don’t know. But it wasn’t a happy look.”
Nick swallows heavily and ignores the sharp pain in his chest as her description of Joe reminds him of that earlier time, when he and Joe were still struggling to fight what they mean to each other. And then the time this past month, during final filming, when Joe’s ignoring tore at both of them.
He takes a deep breath and pushes it all back.
“Yeah, Joe has his moments,” Nick says vaguely, because he doesn’t want to completely discredit Selena’s observation, but it’s Joe, who’s not only none of her business, but also his, and Nick’s never going to say a bad word about him, if he can help it.
“Well, he seems happier now, in any case.” Selena says neutrally. “I’m sure it’ll be great to get to know him.”
“You’re going to be getting to know Joe?” Nick says with a note of disbelief in his tone.
“Well, I’d have to if I’m getting to know you, wouldn’t I?”
“You want to get to know me?” Nick smiles a little.
“Who wouldn’t want to get to know you, Mr. Jonas?”
Selena nudges him a little, lightly touching her shoulder to his. Nick watches as Joe strips out of his collared shirt unselfconsciously and makes his way to wardrobe to change into his black shirt and white jeans for the stage scene. The lean muscles in his back and biceps dance with the movement and Nick shivers slightly, nearly choking on the wave of want that drops into his gut like a bowling ball.
Selena smiles at him teasingly, a little heat in the look in her eye, and Nick’s grateful that she thought he’d shivered because of her.
He realizes, as Selena loops her arm with his so that they can go shoot the car scene, that if he can’t get better control of himself they’re going to be in a world of trouble.
MORE TO COME HOPEFULLY SOON! I like them! I forgot how much I LIKE them together.