Nick woke up to see Linz sleeping peacefully in his arms. May 21, he thought. Linz's birthday. She's gonna be so surprised. Nick could hardly contain himself. He got on top of his sleeping girlfriend in a straddling position and bent over to kiss her.
"Mmm...morning." Linz met the kiss passionately.
"Happy birthday, baby," Nick said before kissing her again.
"It's my birthday?" Linz looked at her watch. "I guess so."
"I love you. You're so selfless." Nick pulled some of her hair out of her face.
"You're so sweet, baby. I love you too." Linz sat up to meet Nick closely.
"Surprise!" the boys and Kati and Sarra said in unison as they walked into the room.
"What's this?" Linz smiled at everyone.
"It's your 18th birthday, sweetie," Nick told her.
"Yeah, you can...you can..." A.J. searched for what she could do at her age.
"Vote?" Kati suggested.
"Yeah, that's it." A.J. smiled.
"Okay, well..." Brian rolled his eyes.
"Shut up." A.J. pushed Brian.
"Yeah, no fighting." Kevin separated them.
"This is so nice of you guys." Linz smiled.
"You deserve it Linz." Howie smiled at her, remembering how she saved him a couple of months ago.
"So I thought I'd be okay if I came in here and surprised you while Nick was still in bed with you, but I was wrong. So could we put some clothes on please and come into the kitchen?" A.J. smiled fakely.
"If it would shut you up," Linz joked.
Linz and Nick kissed passionately before going into the kitchen.
"Well, it's about time." Kevin hugged her.
"Yeah. That was like 30 minutes. You guys didn't do it again did you?" Brian asked as he hugged Linz.
"It only takes 15 minutes," Kati said with a suggestive grin.
"G-d you all are more horny than we are." Nick wrapped his arms around Linz's waist.
"Gee I wonder why that is?" Howie said.
"Maybe because we don't get some every night?" Sarra asked Howie.
"Yep. That's it." Howie smiled at Nick and Linz.
"So what do you wanna do t'day?" A.J. asked her.
"She forgot it was her birthday." Nick rolled his eyes.
"Yeah, I was gonna go to work." Linz smiled sheepishly.
"You forgot it was your birthday?! That's a first." Kati looked oddly at her.
"I know, you're usually assigning presents and stuff. Nick must have been keeping you preoccupied." A.J. smirked.
"Actually, I've been a little busy lately." Linz looked uneasily at Howie.
After she had saved Howie, Morgan, and JC from Kelly, she had a hard time with police and court because of Kelly's death. It's not like Linz liked to kill people, but it someone didn't stop Kelly, Linz might have been the one six feet under, or maybe even someone close to her.
Howie felt bad about Linz's trouble with justice; he had done as much as he could. He would've killed Kelly for Linz if he knew she would've had to go through this. Kelly was one of those psychos that would never stop.
"Well, we have plans for you." Kevin smiled, patting Linz on the back.
"What are you guys doing?" Linz felt Nick's grip loosen as he laughed to hear the fear in his girlfriend's voice. "Oh you think this is funny?" she asked.
"Well, we all decided since you're 18 now that you should get you first tattoo today." A.J. smiled.
"That's such a rip off." Linz rolled her eyes.
"What?!" A.J. asked.
"A.J. tell me, were you planning on getting a tattoo as well today?" Linz smirked to see her brother's face go blank.
"Well, I was gonna get one to match yours," A.J. said with wide eyes.
Linz smiled evilly already knowing what she was gonna get.
"Come on A.J. don't you want a butterfly on your lower back?" Linz showed her brother her new tattoo.
"That's practically your ass Linz," A.J. pointed out.
"Details, details, details. You said you'd match mine."
"Yeah Bone go on and match hers," Kevin laughed.
"If you don't shut up Train, I'm gonna..." A.J. walked over towards Kevin.
"Hey baby what'd you get?" Nick cut A.J. off as he walked in with a large bag full of clothes.
Linz turned around proudly to reveal the brilliantly colored butterfly. Nick went over to her and rubbed it gently before kissing her neck.
"Mmm...what's in your sac?" Linz asked.
"That's a rather personal question." Nick pulled away with a grin. "I got you something, but I'll hafta show you later."
"Nickolas Gene Carter, you're a bad boy." Linz hit him playfully.
"You'll hafta punish me t'night." Nick turned her towards him and kissed her passionately.
"I'm gonna be sick," A.J. muttered.
"Okay so that was A.J.'s surprise. Now for mine. I decided to give you the pleasure of taking me to the mall. I'll pay for anything you want. I'll do anything you want." Kevin smiled.
"Does this mean what I think it means?" Linz smiled uncontrollably as Kevin nodded. "I can take you into Hot Topic?"
"Come on then." Linz pulled Kevin and everyone else with her.
"Linz, I don't think these pants fit right," Kevin said as he came out in the army pants that barely stayed on. "Is there a belt somewhere?"
"No belt," Linz laughed.
"But..." Kevin protested.
"No buts!" Linz smiled.
"Okay, okay, you've had your fun with Kev. It's my present time now," Brian said.
Kevin had bought her tons of clothes and stuff.
"Let's go then." Linz smiled as she hugged Kevin and thanked him. Everything was going perfectly. This day was amazing!
Linz shot the ball into the net. "Okay, I got another point, take your pants off."
This strip basketball wasn't going as planned. Brian didn't know Linz was this good.
"Take it off B-Rok," Kevin laughed from the bleachers with the other guys and Sarra and Kati.
"Okay I only have like one more point." Linz smiled evilly.
"Damn, I thought I could beat you. How'd you get so good?" Brian asked as he sheepishly took his pants off.
"It's called Nick's my boyfriend." Linz waved to Nick and the others.
"Okay, okay. Let's do this. Bring it on." Brian smiled as he dribbled the ball.
Linz took the opportunity and took the ball and dribbled it down the court. Brian looked around, after being rushed, to find the ball.
Linz shot the ball into the net as the Boys and Kati and Sarra laughed.
"Take 'em off, boy." Linz walked towards him.
"Linzey Rose McLean, I'm an engaged man." Brian acted appalled.
"It's not like I haven't seen a penis before, Brian." Linz smiled.
"I wouldn't bet on that," A.J. joked.
"Shut up." Nick hit him upside the head.
"Come on. It's my turn." Howie pulled Linz to his car.
"That was a great play, D." Linz hugged him.
"I love that one." Howie smiled. "And I'm sorry."
"Sorry? For what? This has been the best day of my life," Linz said.
"I just wish I could help you more. You saved my life by risking yours. I could never do that." Howie smiled at her.
"You're so sweet, D."
"That's why we call him 'Sweet D,'" Nick said from behind her.
"Yeah, well, I'll meet up with you later, Linz." Howie hugged her.
Linz waved goodbye to Howie and turned around to Nick.
"Hey, what about you?" Linz put her hands on his chest as he held her tightly.
"I'm saving it for t'night, after the concert." Nick kissed her.
"Nick we do that every night." Linz rubbed his chest.
"But tonight it's gonna be different." Nick touched her button nose.
"Oh, are we using something 'extra' t'night?" Linz said with a suggestive grin.
"We might be." Nick smiled and kissed her. "Well, Kati and Sarra can't wait for their present. Come on they're in the car."
"I love you." Nick put a hand in Nicks.
"I love you so much." Nick wrapped a large arm around her small waist.
"So what's this big surprise?" Linz asked.
"If I told you it wouldn't be a surprise now would it?" Nick kissed her neck.
Linz cracked up as Kati switched the movie for the third time. There was a knock at the door and Sarra mindlessly opened it.
"Good job, Sarra," Kati said as the security guards picked them up.
Nick got out of his car when he saw the three girls being carried out by security guards. After the security guards left they went over to Nick cracking up.
"Hey what happened?" Nick smiled.
"They caught us," Linz laughed.
"Well got to go." Sarra looked at her watch.
"Okay, I'll drop you off. Come on." Nick smiled.
Linz walked into the kitchen with the mail. As she started to look at it, Nick came up behind her and smelled her hair.
"It's difficult to read the mail when you're smellin' me." Linz turned around to him playfully.
"Then I'll do this." Nick turned her around and started to kiss his way up and down her neck. Linz giggled a bit as she checked the mail but after reading a letter she pulled away with wide eyes and ran up the stairs. Nick started to follow her but the letter caught his eye. After reading it he looked up.
"Adopted?" he mumbled before running after Linz.
"Adopted? Adopted?! How come you never told me?! Don't you think I deserve to know these things?! Do you know what this means Alex?" A.J. cringed when she called him Alex; she never did that. "My whole life is a lie!"
"I didn't know, sweetie," A.J. told her with tears in his eyes.
"Bullshit!" Linz fell to the floor in tears. "I'm not a McLean, I'm not anything."
"Don't say that! You're always gonna be a McLean." A.J. put a hand on her back but she quickly pushed it away.
A.J. couldn't hold back his tears. " I didn't know."
"Bullshit, A.J., bullshit!" Linz held back her tears and stood up angrily. "I hate you, I never want to see you again."
"Linz..." A.J. said softly through tears.
"No! Everything that meant something, means nothing now. All of my friends are strangers. I'm leaving." Linz ran down the stairs with Nick closely following her. She grabbed the letter and her keys and ran out of Nick's house.
Nick ran after her and stopped her by putting a hand around her waist. She threw it off but then turned to Nick to reveal her tear stricken face. Nick held her tightly as she cried into his shoulder.
"Do you wanna go find you birth mom?" Nick asked in a soothing tone.
Linz nodded. Nick kissed her forehead as he ran his fingers through her hair. He took her hands in his as they walked to his car. Nick opened the door and helped Linz in and quickly went to the other side and got in.
A.J. let his tears roll down his face as he sat in his leather chair. He heard a knock at the door but didn't get it.
"A.J.? You here?" Kati walked in. "Why is it so dark in here? Do you want me to turn a light on?"
"No, no that's alright," A.J. replied quickly.
"A.J., Linz is probably really confused right now, I know I would be. She didn't mean the things she said. She loves you." Kati said down next to A.J.
"She meant it." A.J. put his head in his hands. "Linz never says anything she doesn't mean."
"But she was confused."
"Well so am I! I mean my sister, my little sister, who I love and would protect no matter what, isn't really my sister?" A.J. half asked as tears streamed down his face. "The girl, who has caused so much joy in my life, isn't my sister. Meaning I would have never met her if our...my parents didn't adopt."
"You both are way overanalyzing this. You are brother-sister. You did meet her, and the best part is no matter what any blood test says, you're both McLeans!" Kati brushed away his tears.
"You're right. I need to go find her. Will you come with me Kati?" A.J. held her hands in his own. "I don't know what I'd do without you."
A.J. ran his fingers through her hair as they kissed passionately.
Kati concentrated on the road as they drove down the country street. Kati was having a lot of trouble driving the Miata but she concealed that from A.J.
She slowed down as they went over the railroad tracks, just a little too slow though. The engine died down.
"Stupid stick shifts!" Kati hit the car.
"It's okay, just start it up again," A.J. said right before the railroad crossing signs came down.
"Oh shit." Kati's eyes widened.
Nick, Linz, and Mrs. Angelshacotty laughed loudly. Linz had found her birth mother within the hour, and she had almost forgot about A.J. Almost that is.
"Well, I didn't know you had such an interesting life." Nick smiled.
"Well, it does get a tad bit boring once in awhile. Linzey dear, do you have any other questions for me?" Mrs. Angelshacotty asked.
"Well, I do have one more, I know it might be hard to answer, but..." Linz trailed off.
"Well ask it. Come on dear," she coaxed her daughter.
"Why did you give me up for adoption?" Linz spit out.
"Well my dear, everyone makes mistakes," Mrs. Angelshacotty replied before sipping her tea.
There was dead silence in the room until Linz got up and left.
"I gotta go. Nice meeting you, g'bye," she replied on her way out.
Nick glared at the old woman for a moment, stood up, and started to go out the door but turned around to her. "My girlfriend is not and never was or will be a mistake, lady, so fuck off!"
Nick ran downstairs and out the door to the car. Only to find Linz crying. He opened the passenger door and climbed in, scooting her on top of him. He wrapped his large comforting arms around her waist and soothed her.
"It's okay baby. She wasn't worth your time anyway." Nick kissed her ear.
"I thought she was gonna be perfect. She was but...I hate her." Linz turned her body so she could face Nick.
"Shhh, let's go home, okay?" Nick kissed her and tightened his grip.
"Come on!" A.J. said as he picked up Kati and ran from the oncoming train. They reached safety just as the Miata was crushed by the speeding train.
A.J. looked on and collapsed into Kati's arms.
"Well, shit," Kati mumbled.
"Where's A.J.?" Linz said to Kevin.
"Listen sweetie, something bad happened to A.J. and there's nothing we can do."
"What is it? What's wrong?" Linz sat as she was sat down by Kevin.
"Kati and A.J. were riding in the Miata when the transmission shut down. To make a complicated story short, the car was run over by a speeding train," Kevin as he started to cry again.
Linz stared at him blankly not knowing what do feel.
"T-They're dead?" Linz let the tears fall as Kevin nodded.
Linz trudged back to her and Nick's room with Nick close behind. She got in the room and fell on the bed.
"Come on, honey, at least change into some of my pjs," Nick coaxed.
He threw her some boxers and a shirt.
"Thanks." Linz put them on mindlessly and got under the covers. She quickly fell asleep trying to forget about everything. Nick got in and wrapped his arms around her sleeping figure and fell fast asleep.
Linz opened her eyes to see a familiar face watching her sleep.
"A.J.?! You're dead thought! Oh, I'm-I'm dreaming aren't I?" Linz looked down.
"No, it's really me, sweetie." A.J. smiled at her.
"Uh-huh I'm sure." Linz smiled longingly at his face wishing it was real.
"You're so stupid." A.J. hugged the now surprised Linz.
"A.J.?" Linz smiled. "I thought you were dead, so did everyone else. Listen, I'm really sorry about what I said. I didn't mean most of it. I love you, you are a brother to me."
"It's okay. I was just as confused and scared as you were." A.J. kissed her cheek and ordered her to get some rest.
"Linz? Was that A.J.?" Nick woke up before being kissed by Linz.
"Yep," Linz said. "He's alive."
"He's not dead then?"
"That would make him alive." Linz kissed him again.
Kevin drove the car. Everyone was going on a picnic.
"How was the real mom thing?" A.J. asked his disconnected sister.
"Not very well, she told me I was a mistake." Linz stared out of the window.
"Fuck her!" A.J. said angrily.
"Yeah, oh well," Linz sighed.
"Well, you'll always be a part of the McLeans. We brought you up and we love you." A.J. hugged her and she hugged back.
"Linz is ticklish," A.J. announced.
"No I'm not." Linz smiled.
"Yes you are," A.J. insisted. "Nick, tickle her."
Nick did as he was told and Linz burst into laughter.
"Well, that's probably the first time Nick's heard that from you." Kevin smiled.
"What?" Linz asked.
"Stop it, Nick. Please! Don't!" Brian mocked her.
"Shut up!" Linz smiled.
"Guys, I don't need to know." A.J. closed his eyes in disgust.
"Guess who?" Kati came back from the bathroom with Sarra.
"Hmmm...this is hard. Wait." A.J. felt her hands. "You don't know how to drive a stick and your name is Kati."
"Wow Bone you could tell all of that from her hands," Howie said sarcastically.
"I have my own way of telling thank you very much D." A.J. held Kati.
Nick kissed Linz awake.
"I need to ask you something." Nick kissed her again as she rolled on top of him.
"Okay, I know this might sound stupid, but I was gonna ask you in front of the guys but that didn't feel right. And I was gonna ask you your birthday night but that obviously didn't work so...Linzey Rose McLean...will you marry me?" Nick smiled up at his surprised girlfriend.