Sunlight streaming through the bus's windows the next morning made Nick groan and slowly open his eyes. Feeling weight pressing down on top of him, he glanced down and saw Kayla sleeping on top of him, her pillow on top of his chest and her head resting on top of her pillow. Nick pulled one hand out from under his head and reached down to stroke her hair. She looked so cute when she was asleep. Letting this thought really sink in, Nick sighed and pulled his hand away again. It was so stupid that he was always hiding his feelings for her like this. Why did he even do it? Brian hadn't been wrong when he had said that Kayla would never turn Nick down if he asked her out. So why didn't he just do it?
Immediately ten thousand excuses started to run through his head. He wanted to build a solid friendship before first. He needed justification of her feelings for him before making a move. He didn't want her to say yes solely because of his looks or fame or money. Etcetera, etcetera, and so forth. But now, he was getting sick of waiting. He just wanted it to happen already, before it was too late.
At that moment, Nick made a decision in his mind. He was going to make a move and finally be honest with her right now.
Well, as soon as she woke up.
When Nick opened his eyes again, the room he was in was bigger and dimly lit, and instead of being on the stiff tourbus couch, he was in a large bed with satin sheets and thick blankets. Glancing downwards, he saw that Kayla was still sleeping on top of him, except now the pillow under her head was gone and her arms were wrapped around him as she slept. Smiling, Nick reached down and started to stroke her hair as he had done before. Somehow, she looked even more beautiful now than she had the last time he'd seen her. Nick felt longing for her creep into his body, and he sucked his breath in sharply. He wanted her so bad, it wasn't even funny. And yet he didn't just want to mess around with her or get into her pants. He wanted more...and that feeling was kind of new to him.
Nick was so wrapped up in his thoughts that he didn't even notice her waking up until he looked down at her face and saw her blue eyes looking back at him. His eyes widened slightly, and he pulled his hand away quickly as he looked away.
"Uhm, hi," he mumbled, his cheeks coloring slightly.
"Hey," Kayla replied tentatively, studying his face carefully.
He hesitantly looked back at her again, almost afraid of meeting her eyes. "Sleep well?" he asked.
She smiled genuinely. "Yes. You're very comfy."
He smiled. "Thank you?" he half-questioned.
She giggled. "You're welcome."
As he laughed too, their eyes locked together, and the smiles faded from both of their faces. They stayed like that for awhile, just staring. Nick wished that he could kiss her so bad. Looking into her eyes, he suddenly became aware of a certain warmth that hadn't been there before, or if it had, he just hadn't seen it. For some odd reason, he could suddenly feel his fear and nervousness brought about by being in her presence start to slip away. Without knowing what the hell he was doing, he started to speak.
"I have to tell you something, Kayla," he murmured.
She slowly moved off of him, momentarily breaking their staring at each other, before replying softly, "So do I."
"You first," Nick offered.
Kayla shook her head. "No. You."
"I don't wanna," he complained with a laugh.
She smiled too before an idea came into her head and her face lit up. "What if we both said it at the same time?" she suggested.
"Okay, fine," Nick said, swallowing hard. The fear and nervousness that had so magically vanished away...they were both completely back now.
"Okay. Um, will you close your eyes? I really don't want to..."
"Yeah, you close yours too," he agreed.
Both of them did.
"Ready?" Kayla asked hesitantly.
"Ready," Nick replied. She slowly began to count.
Nick squeezed his eyes shut more tightly, silently preparing himself for the hardest thing he would ever have to tell someone.
Without thinking, he reached blindly for her hand under the covers. By some miracle, he found it, and, taking it in his own, squeezed tightly.
At that moment, to their immense surprise, Kayla and Nick both said exactly the same thing at exactly the same time: "I'm in love with you."
Both of them immediately opened their eyes when they heard what had happened. Nick was still holding her hand, and he didn't dare let go as he and Kayla stared at each other with wide eyes, absolutely dumbfounded.
"Nicky..." Kayla said softly after a silence. He wasn't sure, but it looked like her eyes were welling up with tears.
"You're not...just saying that...are you?" he asked painfully. He didn't think he had ever felt so much hope mixed with so much nauseous apprehension in his life.
"Why would I just be saying that?" she whispered shakily, brushing the tears away from her eyes and trying to make it look casual.
He grinned. "I don't know," he admitted. "Kayla, I had no idea."
She laughed, even more tears forming, and put her free hand, the one that wasn't tightly enclosed in one of his, on his chest. "I can't believe this."
"Me neither," he agreed, grinning.
There was a silence as both of them realized what had happened and turned bright red as they looked anywhere but at each other. Then Nick felt a squeeze on his hand and forced himself to look back at her.
"What now?" she asked in a whisper when they were making eye contact again.
Nick stared at her for a minute with no expression on his face before a smile broke across his lips. "C'mere," he said, wrapping his arms around her and pulling her up against him. She smiled and closed her eyes as the two of them started to kiss.
The minutes ticked by, and Kayla and Nick were getting more and more into the kisses.
"Babe," Kayla finally breathed as she rolled onto her back, "you wanna show me just how much you love me?"
Nick smirked as he pulled off his shirt and moved on top of her. "You bet..."
"Nick...Frack, you've gotta wake up."
"Huh?" Nick said groggily as he opened his eyes. Squinting in confusion, he lifted his head and looked around to see that he was still on the tour bus, and Kayla was still on top of him with the pillow under her head. Brian was standing up next to the couch.
"Time to get up," he said when his sleepy friend looked at him.
"What? But..." The reality of the situation came crashing down upon Nick, and he groaned. "Fuck," he murmured. It had only been a dream.
"Nothing," Nick muttered. "What time is it?"
"Eight thirty. We already let you sleep an extra fifteen minutes, so you've really gotta get up now," Brian explained.
Nick nodded grudgingly and looked down at Kayla. A sigh left his lips when he realized that since everyone else was already up and about, he wouldn't be able to do anything with her.
Brian saw the way Nick was looking at Kayla and shook his head as he turned and walked away. "I don't even want to know," he decided under his breath.
Nick rolled his eyes and shook his head right back before he realized that he now was faced with a slight dilemma—there was no way for him to get up without moving the still sleeping Kayla. Pursing his lips, Nick reached down and carefully tried to keep her asleep and on the couch while he tried to get up.
Despite his attempts to be gentle, she started to wake up anyway, grumbling and shifting around a little on top of him. Then she lifted her head and opened one groggy eye.
"Nick?" she asked hoarsely.
"Yeah...I have to get up, babe, I'm sorry," he apologized.
"Oh...sure," she agreed, rolling over onto her side between him and the back of the couch so that he could get up.
"Thanks," he said as he got to his feet.
"Uhhh," she acknowledged before rolling back onto her stomach and burying her face in the pillow, instantly asleep again.
Nick sighed to himself and shook his head as he walked back to his bunk to get a change of clothes, resisting the urge to go back there and pull her close again. So much for the romantic rendezvous.