Empty Spaces

Chapter Three

"Okay," Kylie said in her 'let's get down to business' tone of voice. "Let's figure out which of them are single." She was sitting in front of the computer with Dylan.

"Should I just look on their official site?" he asked.

"Yeah, that'll probably be the most legit," Kylie reasoned. Dylan typed in "www.backstreetboys.com."

"What now?" he asked when the window came up.

"Um...just click on their names down there and see if you can find a bio," Kylie suggested.

Dylan clicked on the first one—Brian. Sure enough, a page with "basic stats" came up. They scanned the screen and saw "status: engaged."

"Okay, he's not our man," Kylie said.

Dylan grinned and went back to the main page. He clicked the next name, and they discovered that Howie D. had a girlfriend.

"Um...Dylan? What do we do if they all have girlfriends?" Kylie asked when they found that Kevin was also taken.

"Hold on...still two to go," Dylan reminded her. He brought up AJ's page. "There. He's single." He looked at the pictures of AJ. "He looks like a bad ass. That's good...he'd probably sleep with you."

"But check Nick," Kylie urged, grinning. "He's cute."

Dylan gave her a look. "Okay, so about AJ...

"Come on," Kylie said, laughing. She wrested the mouse from her boyfriend and got Nick's page onto the screen. "Ooh, he's single too. Can I go for him? Please?"

Dylan took the mouse back and opened up a new window. He got AJ's page on it and put the two side by side. "We have to figure out which one will be the best target."

"Well...look, Nick just broke up with his girlfriend. That makes him vulnerable!" Kylie exclaimed.

"But AJ's the ladies man," Dylan insisted.

"So? Nick's the young, innocent one. He'd be easy to get," Kylie countered.

"Okay, this is getting us nowhere," Dylan said. "Let's look at their 'ideal girl.'"

"Fine," Kylie said, "but I think we should take into account the fact that I'm the one who's gonna have to screw him."

"And I think we should also take into account, A, the fact that I'm letting you screw him, and B, the fact that this is purely a business deal," Dylan replied with a sweet smile.

"Okay, okay," Kylie surrendered. "What does Nick want?"

"Honest, loyal, romantic, independent, feisty with great personality, good heart, natural, confident in her looks, doesn't wear too much makeup," Dylan read. He took a deep breath. "Wow. That's setting the bar a little high."

Kylie shrugged. "But it's not really all that much, when you put it all together. He just wants a sweet girl he can trust who isn't all superficial. I can do that. No problem," she said. "And if he really wants a relationship—which is what it looks like—that would make him more likely to really start liking me and help me out more."

"But look at AJ's," Dylan said. "Beautiful eyes, great personality, great sense of humor, long fingernails." He turned to his girlfriend. "Kylie, that's you. You've got gorgeous green eyes, everyone loves you, you crack me up..."

"I don't have long fingernails."

"You can! That's not the point. Look, with Nick, you'd have to work really hard to get close to him and gain his trust."

"But after that, I'd have it made," Kylie pointed out.

"Maybe, but it could take a long time to gain that kind of trust, and since they leave town so much, our time is limited," Dylan reasoned. "With AJ, you could get physically close to him with no problem and then just keep him interested. If he's getting sex from you, he'll be willing to give you some favors in return."

Kylie sighed. "That's a good point, but...Nick's so cute!" she reminded him, pouting.

Dylan closed the window with Nick's picture in it and maximized AJ's. "Look, Kylie. He's not exactly the elephant man."

Kylie smirked and cocked her head to the side. "Okay, you're right," she acknowledged. She smiled. "You know, he kind of grows on you. I like him."

"Hey now." Dylan closed that window too. "Let's not forget about your real boyfriend."

She grinned. "How could I?" Putting a hand on his cheek, she leaned in and kissed him.

"So," Dylan said when that was over, "it's settled then? You'll do AJ?"

Kylie giggled. "Yeah, I'll do AJ. But, if it's okay...I think I should do you a little bit too. I mean, I need practice before I do a friggin' Backstreet Boy..."

"Hmmm...well...yeah, I guess that'd be okay," Dylan said, faking reluctance. They shared a smile. Then he said, "Okay, we've figured out who."

"So what's next on the list?"


* * *

"Come on, Timmy, please?" Dylan begged his best friend that afternoon.

"Man, I'm telling you, I don't know," Timmy insisted, disappearing behind the bar. They were standing in his nightclub, which opened in two hours, and they were trying to pry out of him the name of the club where the Boys would be having their traditional after party. Actually, this one would be more than just traditional; the L.A. show was the very last one on their tour, so the party would be a lot bigger than usual.

"Timmy, Timmy, don't give me that," Dylan groaned. "It's just for me and Kylie. We won't tell anyone else!"

"Sorry," Timmy said with a shrug. "I don't know."

Dylan turned to his girlfriend. "Come on, Kylie. Help me out here."

She winked at him before getting up from her barstool, pulling herself up so she was sitting on the counter, and swinging her legs around to the other side so she was facing Timmy. "Timmy..." she began.

"No, don't even try all that cuteness with me," he warned, refusing to look up at her.

She grinned at Dylan. "But Timmy..." She hopped down from the counter and squatted next to him. "Timmy, you don't understand. We really need this," she said softly, looking at him with a pitiful expression on her face and touching his arm.

"Kylie, I can't help you out. I'm sorry," Timmy mumbled. But he was slipping. His cheeks were slowly turning red.

"Timmy, please?" Kylie begged. "I'll sing for you for free. Anything!" Timmy's club was her usual performing spot. She went there at least twice a month and did a set.

Timmy looked up at her sad little face and sighed. "Oh, all right! It's gonna be at Palm Beach," he confessed, hanging his head and shaking it.

Kylie let out a squeal and hugged him so hard she practically tackled him to the floor. "Thankyousomuch!" she shrieked rapidly.

When she let go of him, they stood up. "I love you, Timmy!" she announced, giving him a big kiss on the cheek.

"Yeah, yeah," he mumbled, wiping his cheek where she'd kissed it. "Look, if you just go there that night, you'll never get in, because by then, the info will have leaked, and there'll be a million people there. But it hasn't leaked yet, so right now, you should be able to get on the list. The owner is a guy called James. He should know who you are, Kylie. He's seen you sing."

Kylie's eyebrows shot up. "Really?" She loved Timmy to death, and performing at his club was always fun, but she'd had no idea that anyone of real importance was ever in the audience there.

"Really. If he doesn't recognize you at first, sing for him. That'll do it."

"Timmy, you're the best," Dylan said, grinning from ear to ear.

"I know."

Kylie laughed and hugged him again. Dylan gave him a quick clap on the shoulder. "Thanks for the help," he said.

"We owe you one," Kylie added.

"You're welcome. Good luck getting in," Timmy said. "Sing for me next Friday night?"

"We'll be there," Kylie promised. "Bye!"



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