Mprov #1

Note: Unbeta'd, not even spell checked - this was spontanously written into LJ (so please excuse any suckiness *g*)... I asked for five words to write my first mprov - and Ian (ianmcduff) provided me with:
obsessive-compulsive, drawl, Burgundy, spacey, beans

Nick had always had a big soft spot where Howie was concerned.

That was not surprising, since Howie had always treated him like a friend, not like some annoying kid he was forced to babysit. Also Howie had never seemed to mind Nick's habit of invading other people's personal space.

So Nick would explode at the slightest sign of Kevin's obsessive-compulsive protectiveness of him, or get sulky when AJ ditched him to go out to clubs Nick wasn't able to get in, or bitch out Brian for spending too much time on the phone with Leighanne. But he hardly ever lost his temper around Howie.

Nick didn't mind Howie being protective of him, because Howie didn't make him feel stupid about it, only loved and taken care of. He understood when Howie wanted to go out on his own, specially if Howie apologized by cooking Nick Paula's famous soup, containing tomatoes, beans, onions, potatoes and several secret spices. And when Howie was on the phone -- which was almost all the time when they were not working -- Nick simply curled up next to him and rested his head in Howie's lap, enjoying the feel of Howie's fingers in his hair.

Although he loved all of his bandmates, sometimes Nick suspected that maybe he loved Howie just a bit -- not more, but different.

So when he heard the question "Say, Nick, not to pry into your affairs - but are you in love with Howie?", asked in Kevin's familiar drawl in one of their daily phone calls during a tour break, Nick was not really surprised to hear himself answer that he might be.

What did surprise him, just a bit, because he was not normally that good with words, was something he said just a couple of days later, again on the phone, this time with Howie.

He must have been quiet for a while, because Howie's soft voice woke him from his daydream: "Nicky? You still there? You seem kind of spacey -- something the matter?"

And before Nick had had time to think about what he was saying he heard himself answer.

"Sorry, D -- it's just that I think I'm in love with you."

Silence. But not for long enough for Nick to get worried. Then Howie's laughter filled the line.

"And you think that's something to be sorry for?"

Nick couldn't help but laugh in answer. "Nah -- I'm just sorry that I did it over the phone."

Another laugh, soft like a caress.

"There you're right -- because now you'll have to wait until I've driven over to your place."

"Wait for what?"

Nick was not really afraid of the answer -- he knew from the tone of Howie's voice that things would be okay, no matter what.

"For the kiss I've been wanting to give you for years..."

"Then you'd better hurry, don't you, D?" Nick tried unsuccessfully to keep his voice calm, because all of a sudden he felt giddy and lightheaded.

"Take the Burgundy out of the cooler, love -- I'll be there before you know it!"

Love. Nick thought the word had a really nice ring to it.


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