The next day after they left we loaded the busses and headed out. To my surprise Nick started it, "What was up with last night, Kev?"

Obviously he was lost, "What do you mean?"

"You and Tracie digging at each other like that?"

He laughed, "We always do that. I donít think Scott is right for her. Too boring."

Nick shook his head, "You two have the weirdest relationship. Itís like youíre a couple but without the sex." I held my breath.

"Itís great. Iíve never had a friend like this. I love it. Itís like you guys only sheís a girl. That perspective is cool."

"And Jessica is ok with this?" Nick was being brave. I waited for the explosion.

"Sure. She knows were just friends. She doesnít really have a choice, Iím not giving up Tracie."

I think that Jessica is not ok with this. I think that Jessica deals with this because Kevin doesnít give Jessica a choice. Knowing him he told her she had to deal with it or go. Pretty obvious to me that in a competition Tracie would win. Hands down.

The conversations changed.


Since we were on the subject of girlfriends, "Nick, where is Pam, when is she hooking back up?"

"This weekend."

"And how are things going? You guys fighting as much?"

Nick shook his head, "Nope, itís better. Iím doing a better job. I knew if I could just do a better job with her sheíd feel better about herself, about us."

I agreed. He didnít always take the time she needed.

Howie didnít agree, "What are you talking about?"

Nick looked over, "I have to be careful and make sure she knows how much I love her. I keep an eye out on the internet and get to get and explain the stories or pictures before she sheís them or pretty quick. Then she doesnít think crazy stuff."

AJ was waving his hands, "Hold up! You do rumour control with your girlfriend?"


He rolled his eyes, "Complete bullshit. She should trust you enough to not have to do that."

"She does trust me, bone. She just needs the re-assurance."

"I think youíre doing good Nick. Iím glad you figured out what she needs. Lots of attention." I thought he needed to know that.

No one else spoke.


Thatís horseshit. I canít believe that Brian is supporting that. Pam gets all freaky and pretty much holds Nick hostage. Heís right about one thing, she sees pictures and hears stories and does crazy stuff. Sheíll call right before a show and Nick will get down about it. Not sure what she says, but it ends up with Nick doubting himself. Great way to walk out on stage in front of forty thousand people. He takes it all to heart. This is his first big relationship and he looks to her for guidance. He always thinks he does it wrong. I think itís just that she is fucked. Weíve all tried to get him to see that maybe some of it is Pam. None of will say that Nick doesnít screw up. Of course he does. But she isnít perfect and she makes his screw ups huge. We donít have a chance with her AND his best friend feeding him that crap.

Speaking of crap . . . I took this down day to talk to Kevin once we got to the hotel. Just general chit chat leading into girlfriend talk. We both had one. I listened to him talk about Jessica and thought he did care about her. I asked if he was in love with her. He told me about their vacation and her telling him she loved him. I was not at all surprised he didnít say it back. "Kevin, where is Tracie in all this?"

"Weíre friends. Didnít we just do this?" He looked a little annoyed. I was used to that.

"Yeah, but this is just us. I have a hard time believing Jessica is cool with you guys falling asleep by the pool in the same chair, or all the nights you two fall asleep on the couch. Do you really think that just because youíre not in bed youíre not sleeping together?"

"Is that what you think? That Iím playing both of them?" Pissed now.

"Yes. Youíre getting the best of both worlds. One for friendship, and unconditional love, the other as a girlfriend and sex partner. Youíre making Jessica look like an idiot, and Tracie a whore."

He stood up, "What the fuck!"

"Everyone thinks youíre fucking Tracie when Jessica isnít around. I donít mean me everybody. If you say youíre not I believe you. But anyone at a party sees. The crew sees you one weekend with Jessica, next with Tracie. You hug them both, hold both their hands, dance with them both, and take off with both of them."

"I am not fucking Tracie. Jesus!" He slammed his hand against the wall, "I donít give a fuck what everyone thinks. Screw them. I fucking hate being under a god damned microscope all the time. God forbid I should have a best friend thatís a woman."

I added, "Beautiful woman."

He stopped ranting, "You know what. I donít even notice. I know sheís beautiful, but I donít think "wow, sheís hot" every time I see her."

"That I donít believe. I do not believe that you donít notice." Iíve watched his eyes follow her. He notices.

"Believe what you want. I donít think of her like that."

This was my chance. I headed out the door, "Maybe you should."


On the plane ride home I had planned on talking to Tracie about Kevin, but things went a little different. She downed one of those little bottles of Tequila. I looked at her, "Are you alright?"

She sighed, "I donít want to deal with Scott. Itís getting yucky."

"How so?"

"Boring. Boring. Boring. Heís so nice, and is good to me, but his niceness is annoying the hell out of me. I just need . . . I donít know what I need. The guys are right, I need strong, and exciting."

Notice how she left out what Kevin said she needed? I decided to let it go. It looked like she was coming around all on her own. If she is about to dump the boyfriend Iím not gonna slam her with the best friend issues. Hopefully, things are going as good with AJ and Kevin.


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