The Magical Beanie
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The Magical Beanie

Nick Carter sat back on his bed in the hotel room he was sharing with Brian Littrell while they were on tour. As he laid back onto the bed, his mind wandered as he tossed and played with an unusual Beanie Baby toy a fan had thrown onto the stage to him at the concert that night. Brian sensed that something was bothering his best friend.

“Nick, something wrong buddy?”

Nick kept throwing the beanie up into the air and catching it when it came down as he mulled over Brian's question. “Well, it’s kinda stupid,” Nick sighed.

“You know I'm a good listener, what's the problem?" Brian said as he bent over to get his pajamas out of a blue suitcase.

“Well, it’s just that I get so sick of being cooped up in hotels, for once I would like to just be able to go out and do stuff without being recognized. I want to go to the mall, I want to go to a nice restaurant without being bugged. Do you know what I mean Bri?” Nick’s last toss landed on his face and he laid there with the beanie on top of his eyes.

“Yeah Nick, I know it’s hard, but like the lyrics to the song goes ‘There are prices to fame’ and being recognized in public just goes with the territory." Brian smiled as he looked at Nick laying there with the beanie still covering his face. “Go to bed, you’ll feel better in the morning, okay? Good night buddy.” Brian slid into his bed and sighed as he turned the lights out.

Nick reluctantly removed the dark green toy from his face and pulled the covers back and crawled underneath the blankets. Clutching the tiny beanie tightly, with both hands, Nick whispered to it as if it would answer his desperate plea. “Just for a day I would like to be able to go out in public without being recognized.” As Nick started to drift off to sleep hanging onto to the toy, he kept mumbling the words over and over.

Nick woke up when he heard a door slam out in the hallway. The morning sunlight was filtered through the tacky hotel curtains. He looked over at Brian’s bed to see if he was awake yet. He discovered that Brian, as usual was curled up on his side in a tight ball hugging a pillow on the bed. Nick snickered at the sight. Checking the alarm clock, he decided to get up and get a glass of water and watch some tv since it was too early to be up yet. When he pulled his covers back, he quickly discovered that something was not right with him at all. He let out a yelp which immediately brought a pillow sailing towards Nick from Brian’s side of the room. “Nick, knock it off, would ya?” Annoyed, Brian burrowed deeper down into his covers.

“Brian, ssso-something’s wrong with me.” Nick’s voice was shaking.

Brian, hearing the tone of Nick’s voice leaned up onto his elbows and looked over at Nick. “Oh, my God, Nick!” Brian was in a state of shock when he looked over at his best friend.

“What has happened to me?” Nick was afraid to move.

“Nick......you’re so.......you’re..........oh, my God!” Brian couldn’t get the words out of his mouth.

“I’m huge. What’s happened to me?” Nick groaned as he struggled to get himself to a sitting position.

“Man, Nick, you look like you gained over 300 pounds in one night! I know I have kidded you about your late night pizza raids telling you to be careful, but that wouldn’t cause do this to you, at least not overnight,” Brian replied, a look of confusion on his face. “Nicky, think about what you did last night, maybe this is a weird reaction to something you ate,” Brian suggested.

"Yeah....something I ate last night would do this to me overnight? Are you fricken out of your mind?!" As Nick searched his mind for the events of yesterday, his eyes fell onto the dark green beanie baby. Scooping it up into his chubby hand, he turned it over, staring at it. “It was this thing,” Nick said as he shook it at Brian. “Remember how I was wishing for one day to go out without being recognized?” Nick threw the beanie across the room.

“Well, I guess your wish came true.” Brian grinned.

“But this?” Nick questioned as he pointed at his body. "What good is this gonna do me?"

“Wait until you see your face,” Brian teased.

“Oh, great what now?” Nick said as he struggled to stand. He slowly waddled to a mirror. “God my thighs rub together. This is so not cool!" When Nick got into the bathroom, Brian heard him yell. "And if that wasn't bad enough I’ve got a huge double chin now!"

Brian could hear that Nick’s voice was getting angry. “Hey buddy, you got your wish, you might as well have fun. I doubt your own mom would recognize you right now. Good thing we don’t have anything scheduled for today,” Brian snickered as he watched his friend waddle across the room.

“How can I go and do anything? I don’t have any clothes!” Nick shot back at Brian angrily.

Brian opened up Nick’s leather suitcase. He was just as surprized as Nick to see that all of the clothes had grown overnight to accomodate his change in size. Picking out some clothes, Brian tossed them onto the bed. “There you go, get dressed and just a little advice, you might want to tuck your shirt in, I heard it can make you look thinner Brian chuckled as he went into the bathroom to get dressed.

"Oh yeah...thanks," Nick gave a half laugh at Brian’s last remark. He grunted and groaned as he struggled with each article of clothing. By the time he was finished getting dressed, Nick was winded and sweaty.

“Hey, Nick, I hear Kev and Howie down the hall, go ahead and leave before me and I will meet you in the lobby, okay?” Brian said as he walked by the front door. "Let's see if they even know who you are."

Nick awkwardly tried to get up off the bed. “Okay sounds like a good idea. Then we'll see if I can pull this off.” He put his trademark white nike baseball hat on backwards and left the room.

The elevator was around the corner and Kevin, Howie and AJ were standing by it waiting for the car to come up. Nick stood waiting for the elevator with them. The three guys glanced over at Nick, but no one paid any attention to him. Nick knew he was unrecognizable when he got off the elevator and none of the guys ever said anything to him.

Nick and Brian spent the afternoon shopping at a mall and going to as many places as they could go. Although Nick was never recognized, Brian was at every place they went and Nick patiently waited as Brian signed autographs and posed for pictures.

“Nick, I just hope that this change that happened to you, made you happy,” Brian sighed as they got into the cab for the ride back to hotel.

Nick grinned. “Bri, this was actually one of the more happiest days of my life so far.”

Nick woke up the next morning when he heard a knock on the hotel door. Before he got up he looked under the blankets and was immediately happy to discover that he was back to normal. He started wondering if this was just all a bad dream. He jumped out of bed and ran to the door and looked through the peephole, a dark brown eyeball was staring from the opposite side of the viewfinder.

“Bri! Get up, AJ is here.” Nick announced as he pulled the door open. Opening the door he let AJ in.

“Hey, Nicky, where were you and Brian all day yesterday? I couldn’t find ya,” AJ questioned as he entered the room.

Nick rubbed the back of his head, “Ah, you know, out checking the sights and stuff with Brian,” Nick casually replied hoping that AJ would leave it at that.

“Oh.” AJ saw a dark green beanie baby on the floor and bent over and picked it up. At that moment, Nick realized that it was not a dream and that he should destroy the possesed beanie.

"Well while you were out yesterday playing around I was on the phone most of the afternoon having it out with Sarah. Ya know what Nicky?” AJ asked as he played with the beanie.

“What’s that, AJ?” Nick replied as he watched AJ play with the hexed toy.

“I have such a hard time figuring out women tick, why their moods change so much. I wish for one day I could understand women from their angle.” AJ was now holding onto the beanie tightly.

Nick grinned at the tatooed rebel. “I hate to say it, but ya know, that could actually happen someday, AJ.” Nick laughed.