Swollen Issues - Chapter 23

The journalists were packed with questions for Nick about his alleged drug abuse. You could say anything about Bruce but he was handling the situation beautifully. Having the press eat from his hand.

Nick was relieved that he wasn´t getting many questions since he felt like he wanted to hurl at any second. His stomach felt bad again and he was getting some serious chills. And his groin ached so bad when he sat down that he actually had preferred standing up.

He started to move around in discomfort on the chair trying to ease the pain in his groin. This caught AJ´s eye, missunderstanding the situation. AJ got a big, smug grin on his face.

One of the journalists asked Nick about his condition and before Nick had a chance to answer AJ blurted out, "Nick´s got diarrhea!"

There was silence, then lots of laughter errupted in the room.

‘Oh thanks AJ. Let the whole world know!!!’ Nick glared angrily at AJ, feeling his face go red. He wanted to sink through the floor. As soon as he got a chance AJ would have his ass personally fried. He started to stutter when he was going to deny the situation. How he hated when he did that.

He didn´t dare to think about tomorrow headlines!

Kevin saved the situation. "What AJ is saying is that Nick have had a case of food poisoning. Yesterday he was ill at the dinner, but he is feeling better now." Kevin was short and clear as always.

Nick smiled slightly at Kevin, appreciating that he came to the rescue.

Changing his mood he glared at AJ who grinned, reminding him of Garfield’s smug grin. Nick was trying hard to come up with something desintegrating to say but his brain felt like mush.

The rest of the conference followed with no incident.When the boys were asked if Nick was going to cancel tonights show Bruce quickly filled in that there were no such thoughts and that Nick and the rest of the boys would follow the tours schedule as planned.

Both Brian and Kevin frowned at this, but said nothing. Not at that point.

As soon as the press conference was over and the boys had left the room to go to the elevator Nick caught the tatooed man by his arm. "AJ, what the fuck did you do that for?" he shouted, ignoring his pounding headache.

"Chill out man. It was a great tense reliever, besides you were jumping up and down like a fucking Mexican jumping bean."

"I was not!"

Ignoring Nicks comment AJ continued, "Which I am sure that the journalists noticed and better than that, they’re thinking that you were off some high trip I wanted to explain the situation in hand."

That sounded like a smart move, but Nick sincerely doubted that AJ would be so sincere.

"Plus I thought it was a funny line," he grinned. Yeah AJ let the truth out.

Nick sighed. There were no way he could win this battle besides the damage was already done. And he was in no condition to figure out his opponets next move.

"Relax buddy," AJ said, patting Nicks shoulder."It´s not like you commited a crime. Everybody does it. Everybody takes a shit!"

"Yeah we are human, including you, Nick Carter," Howie added, trying to make the situation more smooth.

"Yeah especially you," AJ grinned widely scoring another point.

Nick said nothing in defense, instead he said sourly, " I´m going up to my room to get a nap. I´m whipped."

"No can do, we’re going to lunch." Bruce looked irritated at Nick thinking that he was trying to skip out on the schedule again.

" Not hungry, count me out."

"Nick you have to.." Howie started, interrupted by Brian."Howie, let him be. He said that he wasn´t feeling too well. Besides I think he has a fever."

"Fever my ass. The kid is just trying to get out of the situation.” Bruce was in no mood of hearing that Nick was in any sort of discomfort. Besides management had called saying that the boys were under no circumstances allowed to let out of the schedule unless they were in a coffin.

Brian was about to speak up to Bruce when Kevin shook his head no.

"Why don´t we all go to our rooms for a while and whoever wants to eat can do that by ordering up lunch and then we meet in the lobby lets say in about an hour." Kevin’s strength in the band was that he was great in coming up with structure and stratidgies. All the boys nodded and even Bruce thought it was a great descision.

As they were standing waiting for the elevator Brian whispered to Nick, "Dude, don´t let it get to you. AJ didn´t mean anything you know how he is."

Shrugging, Nick said nothing. All he wanted was to get back to his room. His life sucked badly anyway.

Brian and AJ went off to spend some times with their woman and Kevin went to his room to call Kristin. Howie on the other hand was the only one that went out with one of the body guards for lunch.

Nick went straight to his bed. It felt so good to lay down and after wrapping himself like a cocoon in the bedspread, he fell asleep.

It wa an restless sleep and he dreamed about the press hounting him and he was running. Papparazzis taking pictures of him. People were screaming his name and he was desperately trying to get out of the situation but he was trapped in anyway. They were grabbing at him, tearing in his clothes when he woke up with a jerk.

Drenched in sweat. Soaked.

His head was so fuzzy. He shivered, chills wracking his body. Everything hurt. Every bone is his body felt like it would break. And his throat felt ready to burst. He started to doubt that he would make it to the tv show in his condition. But he also knew that when management made sure that they couldn´t back out, there was no way out.

Looking at the clock on the bed table he saw that he was suppose to be down in the lobby in fifteen minutes. Groaning, he tried to sit up, just to sink back into the bed again. His sweatshirt was plastered to his body in cold sweat and if he hadn´t been freezing so much the clothes would have been shedded instantly. They smelled bad. Sweat.

I have to do this, he mumbled while sitting up again.This time however his balls ached and he felt down his pants. They felt actually hot and very very tender. Nick wondered why they were so hot, he remembered reading in a magazine once that they were supposed to be cold or cool.

Making his way to the toilet he pulled down his pants and took a good look at his testicles. They were red and really swollen. “Shit can you get strep down there too?” Nick wondered outloud to himself.

Wetting a paper towel with cold water he held it towards his privates, cooling it off. It felt good and he felt a bit better. Only to be tricked by his body once again, the nausea was building up.

When he felt a bit better he made his way back to the bed again. There were no way that he could make it out of the room and this time he felt so bad that he didn´t care if the management would kick his ass for not showing up.

He must have dozed off because next he knew he was staring into the face of three concerned band members, Brian, Kevin and Howie.

"Nick can you hear me?" it was Howie, shouting at him.

"Shhhh," was all he could manage. It hurt so much to talk that he prefered to stay mute.

"His fever has gone up," Kevin being observant as always.

‘No shit and I thought we were in Alaska,’ Nick wanted to say but instead it came out as a groan.

"Is it your stomach?" Brian asked, sitting down beside Nick, stroking his sweat soaked hair.

’NO IT’S MY BALLS!’ Nick mentally cried out. “Yeah,” was the reply the men heard.

"We have to talk to Bruce. Nick is in no shape to go anywhere noless perform tonight."

"I know Bri, but you heard Bruce at the press conference. He promised the press that there would be no changes in the schedule and that Nicky would be preforming. There is no way that Bruce is letting that slip," Kevin said as he looked worriedly at Nick.

Nick opened his eyes again, " I´m fine," he said with a shaky voice, void of confidence in his statement.

"Fine my ass," AJ boomed as he entered the room. "Bruce wants to know where the hell you guys are. He’s waiting in the lobby. Mad as hell."

Chapter 24