Flight To Paradise
Flight To Paradise
Sequel to Special Delivery
Sarah walked down the
stairs and into the kitchen of her cousin's house, yawning. She poured
a cup of coffee from the maker and sat at the table, putting her head on
the table, closing her eyes. She felt so tired.
Sarah looked up at Vicki
as she walked in the kitchen and managed a small smile. "You might
say that, I can't believe Matt kept us out that late, I'm so tired," she
Vicki nodded. "Well,
he told me what happened, and trust me, this isn't the first time he's
lost track of time because he doesn't wear a watch. I always tell
him to keep his eye on the clock, but he never does," she said,
pouring herself a cup of coffee.
"Loosing track of time
really isn't that good of an excuse," Sarah said, pretending she already
knew what happened. It was apparent that Matt hadn't told the truth,
and now she had to figure out what he'd said.
"Well, when it comes to
Matt and his friends it is. When Matt, Danny, and Alex are together,
it's near impossible to ever get them home on time," Vicki said.
Sarah nodded and sipped
her coffee. She was relieved when her mother came in the kitchen,
saving her from the conversation.
"Hey, sweetie, good morning,"
she said, giving Sarah a kiss on her head.
"Hey, Mom, morning," Sarah
said, smiling. She watched as her mother, abnormally awake for so
early, poured herself a cup of coffee and looked at Vicki.
"Are you ready?"
"Where're you going?"
Sarah asked as the two stood up and walked to the back door.
"We're going shopping,
we'll be back later, sometime around lunch time or dinner time, which ever
it takes to get everything done," Vicki said.
"Yeah, so don't bother
looking for us, I'm getting everything that I need for the next year,"
Sarah's mother said.
"Ok, bye, have fun," Sarah
said, slightly surprised. She watched as her mother and cousin walked
out and to the car parked in the garage.
"Ok, that was weird,"
Sarah said to herself, standing up. She shook her head and put her
empty cup in the sink. She walked into the living room and picked
up the phone, dialing her calling card numbers.
"Hello, Littrell answering
service, this is Leslie, how can I help you?"
Sarah furrowed her eyebrows.
Leslie? "Hi, can I speak to Brian, please?"
"Depends on who this is."
"This is Sarah."
"Oh, hi Sarah! I've
been hearing a lot about you, Brian won't shut up about you. I would
hand him the phone, but he's in an interview right now. But I'll
tell him you called, ok?"
"Yeah, and could you do
me a favor? Could you give him my number? I never gave him
this number," Sarah said, suddenly realizing that it would be easier that
"Sure, lemme grab a piece
of paper from somewhere." Sarah heard a rustling and some giggling
from the other side of the phone. "Ok, what's the number?"
Sarah rattled off the
seven digits of Matt's number, praying that Leslie would get it right.
"You got that?"
"Yeah, I'll give it to
him, he'll probably call back in about a half hour or so, probably less
time," Leslie said.
"Ok, thanks, Leslie."
"No problem, bye!"
"Bye." Sarah hung
up the phone and bit her lip in thought.
"Leslie? Who is
Leslie? She sounded a little young, but who is she?" Sarah
"Why are you talking to
yourself? Is it some strange hobby that you took on while being bored
in Jersey?" Matt asked as he walked down the stairs.
Sarah hurried over to him and
followed him in to the kitchen. "I'd sure as hell like to know what
you told your mother what happened last night. I haven't a clue and
if I had asked her straight out this morning, she would've
flipped," she said.
"I told her that we all
went to a club and lost track of time. I left out that you went out
with your boyfriend and I went out with my friends," Matt said.
"Where did you and your
"To Danny's brother's
apartment. He gave Danny and Alex the alcohol, I didn't drink.
I never drink. And when ten-thirty rolled around, Danny and Alex
were drunk off their asses and I had to take them home. I drove Alex
his girlfriend's house and got ratted out
by her for letting him drink and then took Danny home and he was lucky
that neither of his parents were there. He finally made it to bed and by
that time it was quarter to twelve. I drove as fast as I could to
get to Starbucks, really, I did. If I could've been there faster,
I would've, and I'm sorry for making you wait, but I really had to control
over it," Matt said, explaining it all.
Sarah nodded, taking it
all in. "And you swear you didn't drink?"
"I swear upon God, I never
drink, I'm only sixteen, I could get in major shit for that, I'm not stupid.
Danny and Alex are both eighteen, I couldn't tell them what to do if my
life depended on it. At first they weren't going to drink a lot,
but once they started, they couldn't stop. Danny's brother was passed
out when I left, I don't want to think about what his apartment looks like
and what his roommate will think when he gets back later today. But
I swear, Sarah, I didn't drink and I wouldn't do that when I knew I was
going to drive," Matt said, begging for her to believe him.
Sarah shook her head.
"I believe you, and I won't say anything as long as you don't say anything
about my boyfriend," she said.
"Speaking of which, why
does he look so familiar? There's something about him that tells
me I've seen him before," Matt said.
"Hold on, I'll show you where you've seen him before," she said.
She got up and hurried to her room. She grabbed the issue of Rolling
Stone with the guys and Brian on the cover, she was reading it on the
plane ride to Florida, and it was a relatively
good article. Brian had sent it to her when they got copies, and
she always read it, enjoying the section on Brian, except for the parts
on Leighanne. She walked downstairs and
placed the magazine on the table in front
of Matt, who was eating a bowl of cereal.
"Holy shit!" Matt
exclaimed, spraying cereal everywhere.
"Hey, watch it, this is
a special copy!" Sarah said, grabbing napkin and wiping off the cover
of the magazine.
"What the hell is your
boyfriend doing on the cover of Rolling Stone?" Matt exclaimed.
"Idiot, his name's Brian
Littrell, as in Brian Littrell of the Backstreet Boys? A guy group
based in Orlando? Ringing any bells in there yet?" She asked,
rapping her knuckled lightly on his head.
"Yeah, my ex-girlfriend
was in love with them, one of the many reasons we broke up was because
I insulted them. Now my second cousin, that is supposedly so much
like me, is dating one of them? I can't believe this,
these guys are everywhere!" Matt said,
putting his head in his hands.
Sarah nearly laughed.
"Yes, they are, and they're all incredibly nice and sweet. I spent
almost all of last night with them, they're all really funny and down to
earth. None of them have bloated heads at all," she said, sitting
back in her chair.
Matt shook his head.
"Why me? Why can't I get away from these guys?" He asked himself,
looking at the cover. "Why is this a special issue?" He asked,
pulling it over to him and flipping through it.
"Because I got this the
same time the guys got their copies, before everyone else was able to get
it through the mail or in the stores. Brian even had the guys autograph
it for me, just for the hell of it. They had no
clue who I was then, but now they know,"
"Which reminds me, he's
twenty-four?" Matt asked.
Sarah nodded. "Yup."
"And you're sixteen?"
"An eight year difference?"
"What were you thinking?"
Sarah sighed. "We
never thought about age when we knew each other. We met on-line,
like I told you last night, and we knew how old each other was, but age
never mattered when you're making friends. He has a great sense of
humor and acts younger than twenty-four to keep himself sane and I have
always acted older than I was, he said that I acted the way he should and
he acted the way I should. Though I wouldn't go as far as to say
that, he always tells me that I look much older than sixteen."
"Yeah, somewhere around
eighteen or nineteen. If you met him on-line and he's a Backstreet
Boy, how did you two finally see each other?"
"They were in Germany
six months ago and Brian came to the states to get away from it all.
We acted like friends and whenever he came onto me, I moved away.
I knew that if I fell in love with him, I wouldn't be able to
say goodbye when the time came. Well,
the time came and I fell in love with him. The day he left was one
of the hardest in my life, I never thought I'd see him again except on
TV and in magazines. But two days ago, I received a small package
from him containing two tickets here for me to visit over the New Year.
It almost didn't work because my mom wouldn't let me come, saying it was
too much money, but your mother helped and now we're here and I saw Brian
last night for the first time in six months. No one knows about me
except for the guys and Aaron, Nick's little brother. Not even their
management knows. As far as anyone is concerned, Brian is single
and I am just a friend to anyone who sees us together. If anyone
ever found out about us, we'd both be in major trouble because Brian is
on probation still from when he disappeared from Germany six months ago.
He never told anyone but Nick where exactly he went and who I was and everything.
Nick is still the only one who knows the whole story, as far as I know.
If anyone else found out, I'm afraid to see what would happen," Sarah said,
sighing after the long-winded explanation.
Matt nodded. "Ok,
I think I get it all now. Um, who's who?" He asked, gesturing
to the cover of the magazine.
Sarah smiled. "That's
Nick, Kevin, AJ, Howie, and of course, Brian," she said, pointing to each
Matt nodded again.
"Ok, and why can't you tell anyone about your relationship?"
"Because if we do, Brian
will get in trouble, I'll get in trouble, and we might not ever be able
to see each other again. I love him too much, I wouldn't be able
to handle that," Sarah admitted, playing with the edges of the magazine.
They were both quiet until a phone rang.
"That's my line, I'll
get it," Matt said, standing up. He hurried upstairs and Sarah heard
him answer the phone.
"Sarah! It's for
you!" Matt hollered.
Sarah smiled and ran up
the stairs and to her room. She picked up the phone. "Got it,
Matt! Hello?" She said.
"Well, well, could this
be Sarah Howland, the most gorgeous woman I've ever seen in my life?"
Sarah laughed. "No,
this is just Sarah Howland, who is lucky enough to have a boyfriend who
is like sunshine on a rainy day."
"Aren't you poetic this
morning? What's up, baby, what are you doing today?" Brian
"I'm not too sure, I want
to go out and explore, but my mom would probably kill me for going out
alone without knowing what I'm doing and where I am," Sarah said, lying
back on her bed.
"Well, how about I take
you out? But this isn't going to be a normal tour, we're going places
today, the guys and me, we have interviews and appearances all over Southern
Florida. What do you say?"
"Depends, I believe I
have to take Matt so he won't squeal. Is that ok? Or do we
have to ditch him somewhere on the highway where you can get arrested for
walking around?" Sarah asked.
"You evil person, of course
we can take him along, BJ might like him."
"Which reminds me, who's
Leslie?" Sarah asked.
"Leslie is another of
Nick's sisters, she was acting as my secretary this morning while I was
in the interview. She gave me your message and she started laughing
when I grabbed the phone out of her hand to call you back,"
"Before your own mother!"
Sarah heard from his side of the phone.
"Brian! You called
me back before your own mother?" Sarah asked, sitting up.
"Well, she knew I was
in an interview, and I don't get to see you much," Brian said feebly.
"Brian Thomas Littrell,
I cannot believe you!" Sarah exclaimed.
"Hey, lay off the full
name, I can't call you that because you don't have a middle name," Brian
"Damn straight, why did
you call me first? You should've called your mother, she's more important
than anyone in the world to you, everyone knows that," Sarah said, relaxing
against the headboard.
"I know, trust me, I know.
But I know she would understand, once she finds out that I was talking
to you, she'll understand."
Sarah felt all the color
drain from her face. "You told her about us?" She whispered,
clutching the phone.
"Yeah, she loves the fact
that I'm seeing someone who makes me happy. Over the last six months,
her and Nick were the only ones who knew about you. None of the other guys
ever bothered to listen, but Nick and my mom did."
"Does she know how old
"Um, no, she doesn't.
She hasn't a clue, she just knows that you make me happy and I make you
happy. And that's all she has to know for now, right?"
"Brian," Sarah started.
"Sarah, she doesn't need
to know. She knows we're happy together and that we talk all the
time and that you're here, that's all. She doesn't need to know anything
else and she won't," Brian said somewhat sternly.
"Ok," Sarah whispered,
feeling hurt. Brian was talking to her in such a harsh way, it was
like he was instructing her on what she had to do.
"Now, I need you and Matt
to meet me and the guys at the record store in Orlando, in the back.
We'll be there in about twenty minutes, then we have a signing for about
an hour, and then we're leaving. Will you be there?"
"Of course, see you in
a little while," Sarah said numbly.
"Ok, love you, baby."
"Love you too, bye."
Sarah heard a click and
she hung up the phone, still slightly shocked. Brian never talked
to her like she was a child, he always treated her like an equal.
He never said anything to her in a harsh way and they never fought.
What was going on?
"Sarah? Are you
ok?" Matt asked from the doorway.
Sarah nodded. "Uh,
yeah, I'm fine. Do you feel like going for a day trip today?"
She asked, trying to smile. She pushed Brian's tone aside and tried
to concentrate on convincing Matt.
He asked, walking in and sitting in the computer chair.
"Well, for starters, the
record store in Orlando. From there, we'll be on the Backstreet Boys'
travel schedule," she said, tossing her legs over the side of the bed and
leaning forward. "Sound like fun or are you going to be
a spoil sport and not let me go?" She
Matt wrinkled his nose
and looked out the windows. "I don't know, I mean, I'm not exactly
friends with these guys, and you'll be the only one I know and I barely
know you," he pointed out.
"Come on, Matt, please?
You can meet Nick's sister, BJ, she's seventeen and she's really pretty,
she's a model," Sarah said, drudging up some ancient information she found
out on the Internet.
Matt looked at her, his
eyebrows raised. "A model? What kind of model?"
"A model as in clothing
model, Paris runways and such. She's done some pretty good stuff,
she's got a good list of credentials, and she's really nice," Sarah said,
getting up and walking to the closet where she hung up all
her stuff yesterday when she unpacked.
"You've met her?"
"Yeah, we get along really
well," Sarah said, rooting around in her closet and crossing her fingers.
Tiny white lies never hurt, did they?
"Come on, Matt, it'll
be fun," Sarah said, turning around, holding her outfit for the day.
"Pretty please? With sugar on top?" She pleaded, sticking out
her lower lip.
"Ok, fine, stop pouting,
its too puppy dog-ish," Matt said, standing up.
Sarah smiled and gave
Matt a hug as he walked past her. "Great, now go get ready, we have
to be there in a half an hour," she said, tossing her clothes on her bed
and walking to the bathroom.
"What? And I have
to take a shower too!" Matt exclaimed as she ran past him and in
"You'll have to wait!"
Sarah said, closing the door behind her. She smiled as she waited
for the water to reach the perfect temperature, excited that she was going
to see what a day in Brian's life was like.