Joey was 100% positive that Lance had arrived in the group with nipples. He was equally sure that all of them had, but he was over 200% sure that he’d never seen Lance’s. He knew he must have seen them at one point. The five of them had been changing and showering together for years and he even remembered a horrible shoot in a swimming pool, where they were all clutched their own scrawny bodies and claimed it was chilly, when mostly it was because Lou looked at them in that nervous, hungry way that he had. Surely he would have noticed if Lance didn’t have nipples?
Maybe it was because that was something guys just didn’t notice. But that couldn’t be right because Joey knew all about other nipples. Chris had flat, pink nipples that peeked out from a forest of hair that he refused to wax after that first time, even when Lou yelled about it. JC shaved his chest regularly, and frequently walked around with a Thundercat band-aid on his nipple when he nicked himself. Justin wasn’t old enough to have chest hair and barely old enough to have nipples if there were such an age limit. Joey didn’t really pay attention because he was too busy blocking Justin’s nipples from Lou’s gaze. Regardless, his memory of Lance didn’t go beyond a pale blur of flesh with no discernable characteristics.
And Joey knew all sorts of other things. Personal, secret stuff that went way beyond nipples. For instance, he knew that Chris was uncut; they all checked each other out at the urinals, even if they denied it later. It’s what guys did. Which meant he’d known from the first week he’d known Chris. Hell, he and the others even had a quick grope last summer when Chris had passed out on the floor of the bus without any clothes on. While Joey wasn’t quite sure anymore why Chris had been nude, if he rubbed his fingers together he could almost feel the soft, satiny feel of the extra skin.
Justin’s ass was covered in freckles and Chris had some strange sort of affinity with the big one right in the crease of ass and thigh. He could flick the damp tail of his towel with such precision that it seemed to kiss the under swell of Justin’s cheek and Chris would be across the room, empty-handed and innocent before Justin even felt the sting. Joey was the only one that didn’t mind rubbing antiseptic cream on the welt, so he could say with a certain amount of smug authority and laughter that he’d felt up Justin’s ass.
And shit, JC was constantly hard, morning, noon, and night, so much that Joey couldn’t even count the times they’d all caught him jacking off. There wasn’t anyone in the group who couldn’t tell you exactly how many strokes it took to get the center of JC, what his face looked like when he came, or how those breathless little whimpers that he made in the back of this throat rolled up and down your spine whether you wanted to admit or not.
Joey knew all these things because he’d seen it, but where the fuck had Lance’s nipples come from?
Yesterday seemed so far away.
The video wasn’t necessarily a good idea, but it was a fun one. They felt stupid in the Jackson 5 wigs and polyester, but the rap scene was a blast. Justin had gone overboard with his ghetto talk and JC had laughed until he dry heaved when Joey’s pants fell down. Lance had just looked dorky in his sideways hat and his “yo, yo, yo, man” but everything was fine.
They’d danced their regular song routine twice, but only because Lou decided they needed the extra footage. It was perfect the first time; they’d been performing it forever and never screwed up anymore. Later, when they all went back to the hotel, Lance was still Lance. Joey wasn’t thinking about nipples or lack thereof, just arguing with Chris about what club to go to.
But this morning Lance had laughed at JC's Slash imitation and then turned towards the camera when Johnny yelled action. Joey saw them for the very first time, right then, right there. Under the lights and before the cameras and in front of the technicians were Lance’s nipples.
Like little dark smudges of dirty skin, Joey had to strain to see them under the mesh of the black shirt. Take after take, Lance tossed his head back with wild abandon as he banged on his drum and laughed breathlessly while his nipples seemed to shift in the shadows of Lance’s body. And they were distracting; Joey’s eyes couldn’t help but be drawn to them.
More distracting than the wig and makeup, or the shiny, slick lip-gloss that Lance complained about, then got into trouble because he kept licking it off. And later, when Lance crawled behind him, he knew they were there and that was why, he told himself, the firm clutch of Lance’s fingers burned hot through Joey's pants. Or when he reached for Lance’s wrist, time after time because Justin kept screwing up his lines, he only rubbed it gently with his thumb because Lance was nervous. Not because he was wondering if the pale peaks of flesh would feel soft like that.
He knew for sure it would be better after lunch, because Chris and JC looked ridiculously ugly in their stuffed bras and dresses and Joey had seen himself in the mirror. Justin was showing more skin that anyone in his little red top, which only made Joey keep an eye out for Lou. Lance wouldn’t, couldn’t, wear anything smaller than that. So when Lance walked over in his short pink dress and small fake breasts and not a single nipple in sight Joey was most definitely not distracted.
Not by the slightly tan strip of skin down the center of Lance’s chest or thick, sooty lashes with smudged eye shadow or stained red lips, working industriously around the sucker Lou had handed him. He didn’t watch Lance’s hips sway when he walked or notice how the tight material clung to the fleshy swell of Lance’s ass. And if his chest got tight when Lance’s body brushed against him or Lance’s hot fingers pressed against the small of his back during the dance, he blamed it entirely on the fit of the bra. When the director yelled “cut” Joey didn’t run to the trailer to get away, it was just that he had to get away from the pinch of the pantyhose.
He was tying up his shoes when Lance finally came in, glowing from the heat, looking for all the world like he'd just applied more lip-gloss. The laces kept slipping and Joey had to re-tie them three times while Lance shimmed out of his dress. He was more careful with it than Joey was with his, which was puddled in a corner where it had been kicked. Smoothing out the creases, zipping up the back, Lance looked intent as he hung it up just right on the padded hanger wardrobe provided. The boots he propped up underneath.
Joey tried to think where his heels were because he taken them off before he’d made it to the trailer, but he couldn’t, not when Lance twisted his arms around his own back and slipped out of the plain white bra, and Joey couldn’t help himself any more.
“Lance,” he started, but then didn’t know what to say. Lance looked at him quizzically and Joey absurdly wondered if it felt strange to stand there in nothing but a thong and knee-high white stockings with his nipples tight and pointed.
Lance just waited, never said anything, not as Joey approached him, not as Joey said, “I just…” and reached out. He stood perfectly still, watching Joey with wide, curious eyes, even as his nipple strained under Joey's fingers. Joey could feel the heat radiating off of Lance's bare skin and still Lance didn't move away, but his eyes closed slightly and Joey could smell his sweet strawberry breath as it quickened.
He moved closer yet, brushed the other nipple softly. Lance did move that time; backwards, without real intent and Joey couldn’t help but follow until Lance hit the makeup counter behind him. Joey pressed on for a moment, Lance’s skin silky beneath his palms and Lance swept his own hand behind him. They both ignored the clatter of falling items.
“I didn’t know,” Lance offered softly, like he knew exactly what Joey wanted to say. Understood what Joey needed and slid one of Joey's plucking hands from his chest to his hip, his thigh. The skin under Joey's palm twitched and burnt when he pressed, pushed until Lance sat on the counter.
Lance smiled up at him, reached to bring Joey's face towards his. It was tentative, a mere brushing of lips once, then again. Lance moaned low in his throat and pulled Joey closer, angled his head; let his tongue beg for entrance. Joey let him in.
This was different, Joey thought amazingly, better than anything else he knew about the rest. Lance’s skin was silkier than Chris’ and finer than Justin’s and his rumbly little pants sounded better than any noise JC ever made. His nipples were hard and round and fit so perfectly in his fingers, and he whimpered with every tug and pinch that Joey gave.
He could feel Lance fumble at his waist, pull at the drawstring on his sweat pants. Felt it, but he didn't stop to notice, to look. Just wanted to watch his thumb go back and forth, back and forth over Lance’s flushed skin. His other hand painted the same pattern on Lance's hipbone, his thumb slipping under the thin elastic band he found there.
It wasn’t that strong, the strap snapping easily when Joey twisted his hand. Lance bit at his mouth and wrapped his legs around Joey's waist, pulled him in. Joey moaned at the feeling of his bare cock pressing hard and damp into Lance’s; the silky glide of the stockings on the curve of his ass not new, but different coming from Lance, with Lance.
Lance’s mouth moved frantically over Joey's face, light kisses pressed along his brow, down his nose to his chin, onto his neck. Joey could see himself in the mirror behind Lance now. Watched his face go in and out of focus with every heated breath. Lance ran his tongue over Joey's nipple, through the shirt, the heavy burn of it made Joey's skin ache.
The hem of his t-shirt brushed against the tip of his erection, made him shudder until Lance held the two of them, squeezing and stroking, fingers moving over the heads with every down stroke. Another stroke down and one of Lance's hands kept going, his thumb slipping into the damp crease of Joey's thigh and back again, nudging against his balls. He wasn't sure what finished it for him: the squeezing comfort of Lance's hands, the way Lance groaned his name and came when Joey rolled his nipples between his fingers, or Lance's muttering mouth biting at his throat.
They leaned together, Lance's eyeliner smudged and the lip-gloss gone and his hair damp. He wasn't glowing anymore, just sweaty. Just Lance, Joey knew.
Like it had always been just Lance.
Because Joey could remember how Lance's nipples always pebbled when they were cold, and how embarrassed Lance had been when the photographer at the pool shoot told him to stand behind JC because of it. He'd always known what Lance's nipples looked like because he'd seen them a million times.
And when Joey leant down and took one in his mouth while Lance hummed tiredly beneath him, he thought that maybe a million times wasn’t quite enough.
Hmm, where to begin... well, Kasha probably read the same beginning over more times than can possibly be good for a person, and it wouldn't have an ending without Ann or Lesa. It wouldn't be finished at all without a lot more of Ann. Of course, if you don't like it, it's also Ann's fault. *g*
Also, thanks to Julad for the wonderful templatey goodness, which I will manage to fuck up on a regular basis from this day forward.