KT (rensahannou) wrote,
KT
rensahannou

[fic, BTR] Too Far From the Start, a.k.a. James & Logan are NOT Dating (Part 2)

Re-posting this here for archive purposes. ♥

Title: James and Logan are NOT Dating Too Far From the Start [Part 2/?]
Author: rensahannou
Disclaimer: Still not my boys, although I kind of love them like they were.
Pairings/Characters: James/Logan...basically
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: ~6500 for this part
Warnings: Umm...a few little spoilers for Season 2 episodes. Text-speak. More run-on sentences, because apparently periods are expensive and I need to save some for the occasional ellipsis.

Summary: James decides to collect on his and Logan's pact a little early.

Previous chapters: Part 1

Author's Notes: Bear with me on this one, guys. James's head is a lot harder for me to get into than Logan's so I was struggling a lot here, especially without Kendall and Carlos to take some of the focus away. So if this sucks I apologize! The next part should be better.

Also this fic totally needs a better title but I've never been any good at coming up with titles, so, uh...we're stuck with this for now. And probably forever.

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Part 2: The Kiss

James wondered if Logan ever forgot about their pact. Sometimes James did. He couldn't help it; since they never talked about it, it was easy to get caught up in the excitement their lives had become after moving to L.A. and let things like childhood promises slip his mind. But then some hot guy—there really were a lot of them in California—would smile at him all flirty and the pact would resurface in his mind, stopping him before he could smile back.

Logan was seriously costing him a lot of potential dates. And make-out sessions. And…whatnot.

For the most part James didn't really mind, because once they left Minnesota the pact became much less about James and much more about Logan. The only thing stopping James from trying his luck with a guy back home had been the lack of quality opportunities; the only thing stopping Logan was pretty much everything. There were enough hot girls around that James was willing to make this sacrifice for Logan.

He didn't even have to stop and wonder why he was willing. He would have done it for any of them; his friends had given up so much for him, and even though they all enjoyed the benefits of this new life James never forgot it had cost them each something important. Well, okay, sometimes he forgot. But the point was, the sacrifice he was making for Logan didn't stem from a sense of debt, or even the general loyalty he felt for each of his best friends. Maybe it was a direct result of the pact itself and the fact that James was genuinely convinced Logan could go his whole life telling himself he only ever thought about girls if someone didn't force him to confront his own sexuality. Maybe it was because the pact had made James think about what kissing Logan might be like and now he was curious to know for real.

Or maybe it was because James's relationship with Logan was something a little different than what he had with Kendall or even Carlos. There weren't words for it, at least not words that James knew, and he was afraid if he tried asking Logan his friend would look at him like he had no idea what James was talking about. But James felt it all the same. He felt it in the little thrill he got whenever Logan took his side in an argument, and not just because Logan was a genius so whichever side he picked had to be the right one. He felt it in how quickly Logan forgave him over the Camille issue, and was always totally okay with James and Camille being good friends both before and after the kiss. He felt it in the way he had been nervous bringing his sneaker reselling idea to Logan—because it seemed like a good way to make money but he couldn't tell for sure, and he didn't want Logan to pry too much about the reasons James was willing to get his hands on such amazing shoes and then give them up—but as soon as Logan heard it he jumped on board and started figuring out the details.

Of course, when James did get his hands on the shoes the worries about how he was mostly broke and might have to give his friends bandanna origami animals for Christmas (again) had disappeared in the face of sleek black leather and shiny gold perfection. But even though it ended up in a fight and him and Logan costing each other $250, there were no lasting hard feelings in either direction which James thought was pretty impressive. In fact the whole thing had turned into a story they liked to tell in interviews, dissolving into laughter as they recounted the tragic fate of the poor sneakers.

(James actually still had those Buster Clydes, though he was pretty sure Logan thought they'd been tossed. They were hidden safely away in James's room, and although months of searching hadn't turned up any magic shoe-repair shops that could fix them, James was still convinced one existed. This was Los Angeles, after all. The whole city was magic.)

James felt the differences, but he didn't know how or when they'd started. Probably long before he'd ever noticed. All of the guys had their loyalties tested sometimes, but in the past year his and Logan's friendship had been tested in ways his friendship with the others hadn't. And while James wouldn't say they'd passed every test with flying colors, each one had shown him that much more how what he had with Logan was just a little bit special. And so, yeah, James was okay with waiting to date guys. Because it was for Logan.

Well, James was okay with it until he wasn't, at least.

——————

It was getting into autumn now, the time of year when they all started missing Minnesota a little more than usual. Here in L.A. there were no crisp breezes or leaves changing color, no fresh hot apple cider or pumpkin patches everywhere, no hockey season right around the corner. On the other hand, they did have an awesome pool and bright sunlight that was great for tanning, they got to record music and had fans who loved them, and there were attractive people everywhere. James was okay with the trade-off.

Still, he was pretty sure he wasn't having quite as much fun in L.A. as he could be having, and it was all Logan's fault. Logan was already 18, James would be soon, and he was starting to lose his patience. His sacrifice was becoming less willing, bit by bit. At this point it seemed pointless to follow the pact to the letter and wait until graduation; there had been plenty of time already and if Logan hadn't gotten up the nerve to kiss a guy so far those last few months weren't going to make any difference.

(Sometimes, James wondered what would have happened if it had been some crazy boy who had latched onto Logan when they got to California, instead of Camille. He wondered, but he could never come up with an answer, partly because it was too weird to imagine those early days without Camille being crazy about Logan.)

It was on a late Tuesday afternoon during an impromptu foosball game that James decided to bring up their pact. He and Logan had the apartment to themselves for the moment, but there was no telling how long that would last so he had to make his case quickly and hope for the best. And hope that his friend even remembered. But Logan wouldn't really forget something like that, right?

"I don't think we should wait until graduation," James said matter-of-factly, hitting the miniature puck towards the goal.

There was no response for a second, then Logan dropped his hands from the knobs and stood up. "What?"

James leaned forward to look at Logan, hands propping him up on the table dome. "So you did forget!" He had to admit it hurt a little. Logan stared wide-eyed back at him.

"Are you…" Logan started to say, then looked around the room before continuing in a near-whisper, "Are you talking about…the pact?"

"Oh!" James said with a smile as he crossed his arms. "You do remember. Cool."

"Of course I remember, James," Logan replied, still looking confused. "But why are you bringing it up now?"

"Because I'm tired of holding back for your benefit."

Logan raised an eyebrow at him. "Oookay, I'm still lost."

"Dude, do you remember or don't you? If either one of us kisses a guy it ruins the whole thing. So I've been passing up all these chances just to make sure you don't end up going your whole life without knowing if you're into guys." It made him feel very selfless to say it, which was probably bad but oh well. James was an awesome friend, and it didn't hurt to remind people every once in a while.

Logan blinked, and looked like he might be holding back a laugh. "James, you're the one who isn't remembering it right. We had this discussion, back then. You said the pact was that if either of us had never kissed a dude, not both of us. You were pretty insistent about it."

James's jaw dropped. Logan was totally right. James's memory had twisted everything around and gotten it backwards. This made so much more sense! But that meant…

"So I've been not kissing guys all this time for no reason?" He was on the verge of pouting.

"Yep, pretty much," Logan said with a nod. "For what it's worth, it's, uh, cute that you were looking out for me though. And sweet."

James rolled his eyes. "Yeah, cute and sweet for a year and a half when I could have been making out with hot dudes!"

A chuckle escaped from Logan and James glared at him. "Um…sorry?" he offered. "But now you know, right? So you can make up for lost time."

James huffed and stood there for a second, considering. Logan was right, but… "I still think we should do the pact now."

"What? Why?" Logan asked, and his voice had an edge of fear to it.

"Because I've been waiting all this time to kiss you, dammit." Logan blushed immediately, and James realized that may not have sounded quite like how he intended it. "I mean, not waiting to kiss you, but…waiting to kiss you."

Somehow that actually seemed to make sense to Logan, because he didn't question it. "Yeah, and you can just keep waiting until graduation."

"See, that's my other point," James said, waving a hand towards Logan. "You're just stalling. You're going to be kissing me either way, because there is basically no chance you'd kiss any other guy between now and then. So you might as well just get it over with now. And then I can stop worrying about you and focus on more fun things. Like making out with hot dudes."

James stared at Logan, and Logan stared back, still red-faced. "Like, right now?" he finally said.

"Yep," James answered, nodding. "We're alone, so it's as good a time as any."

Logan started fidgeting and looking around again, nervously. "Can we go into one of the bedrooms?" James raised an eyebrow at him. "No, no, not like that," he said, waving his hands for emphasis. "I just mean we're…kind of exposed here. Someone could walk in on us."

"You're embarrassed to be seen kissing me?"

"James," Logan said, pleading. "I don't—I don't know if I want it to be public knowledge. Or anyone's knowledge. I mean…I just don't want to have to answer to anyone else for it, before I've even had time to figure things out for myself. Can you understand that?"

"Of course I can, Logan," James replied, not sure if he should be offended. Logan looked relieved at the answer, so he decided not to be. "Besides, I don't really want to be interrupted until we've done this right." He grinned and had Logan blushing furiously again in no time. "So, which room? Yours is closer."

"Which is why we're going to yours. We should be able to hear anyone coming up the stairs."

James laughed. "You're so paranoid."

"It's called planning ahead. You should try it sometime."

James gave him a look and Logan smirked. "After you," James said, turning and gesturing towards the hallway with mock politeness. Logan started walking, but stopped once he was through the first doorway.

James stepped up behind Logan and put a hand on his shoulder. "It'll be okay, dude," he said, trying to channel some of his own confidence into his friend. "It's just a kiss. No big deal."

"Right, no big deal," Logan said, sarcastically, but he was walking again. James followed behind. "Just a kiss. We'll just forget the fact that I'll be kissing a guy, and not just that but, y'know, one of my best friends since forever. No pressure, no reason to be nervous at all." His voice was strained, and he started to sound panicky towards the end.

James laughed, hoping that was the right reaction. "You have a point. I'm always a big deal." Logan didn't say anything, but James could tell by the way he moved his head he was rolling his eyes. James grinned as they both headed up the stairs. "Well, is there someone you'd rather be kissing? I don't really care who kisses who as long as we both get some guy-on-guy tongue action today."

Logan stopped right as he reached the top of the staircase. "Tongue?" he nearly choked out.

With Logan a few steps above him James had a nice view of his friend's ass, which he didn't really mind, but… "Just go, dude," he prodded, poking Logan in the back.

"I'm not sure this is a good idea," Logan said, voice full of nerves.

"And I'm not sure I want to keep staring at your butt, so move it," James countered. "You can freak out once we're actually in my room."

Which is pretty much exactly what he did. Once James had closed his door he turned to find Logan wild-eyed, wringing his hands together. He looked like he was about to start shaking. "I don't think I can do this, James. I don't know why I agreed to it in the first place."

"For the same reason I did, Logan. We both need to know." James leaned back against the door and slid until he was sitting on the ground. "But it's not going to work if you're all jittery like this. So I'm gonna sit here until you ask me to get up. Just try to relax."

Logan looked at James for a second, then looked away. He started pacing, walking a short line back and forth. Then he tried sitting on the floor, but hopped up again almost immediately. All in all it was pretty amusing, except Logan was seriously freaking out and James didn't like it.

He looked too much like the Logan from three years ago, freaking out during the conversation that led up to the pact being formed. James loved that Logan, but if he wanted to make out with him he'd have talked Logan into it that same day. The pact had been future-dated for a reason, and it had turned out better than James ever expected. Because he did want to make out with the Logan he knew now, here in L.A. The Logan that had agreed to a silly make-money-quick scheme involving a pair of sneakers, the Logan that had sided with him instead of Kendall when they wrote their first song as a group, the Logan that had danced with James at prom, embarrassed but not enough to run away. The Logan he had shared stages and sound booths with, who was helping to make James's dreams come true.

The Logan from the day they made their pact was a kid, who buckled under pressure and would agree to just about anything his friends wanted him to do.

…And okay, current Logan was still really easy to convince against his better judgment, but current Logan was not a kid. Current Logan was hot.

Something in his reasoning struck James as sort of wrong, and he sighed. Maybe this wasn't one of those things he should be trying to talk Logan into, even if it was for his own good. "Look, Logan, if you really don't want to do this—"

"No," Logan cut him off, looking James in the eye again for a split second. "You're right, I know you're right. I haven't spent the last three years dreading this moment, so that must mean I want to do this. It's just—I thought I had more time, and this is so sudden, but you're right because it wouldn't have mattered anyway. I was going to freak out whenever it happened. Just…give me a minute to let my brain win this argument with my body, okay?"

James blinked a few times before he started laughing loudly. He threw his head back against the door, barely noticing when it hurt, and when his laughter finally died down there were tears in the corners of his eyes. He wiped at them with the back of a hand, still chuckling softly.

"What was that about?" Logan asked, and at least he didn't sound nervous anymore. Confused and maybe a bit offended, but not nervous.

James looked at him, trying not to giggle again. "Did you hear yourself just now, Logan? Your brain and your body are arguing over whether to kiss someone, and your body is the one saying no while your brain tells you to go for it? Only you, Logan. Only you." He grinned up at his friend.

For a moment Logan looked like he couldn't decide whether to be more offended or just amused. His eyes narrowed, then his mouth twitched, then finally he shook his head. "Come on, stand up."

James didn't need to be told twice. He shot up off the floor, closing the distance between himself and Logan in three steps, intending to swoop in without any more warning. But Logan stuck his hands out and stopped James in his tracks, then held him at arm's length. James stood, watching Logan, waiting.

Logan wouldn't make eye contact, but he seemed to be gathering up his courage. When he started leaning forward, gaze focused on James's mouth, James felt the first stirrings of what might have been nerves in his chest and stomach. Then Logan's lips were on his, pressing lightly, and just as that fact was starting to register they were gone again.

James blinked a few times, eyes not really focused on anything. "Dude, what was that?" he asked as he felt Logan's hands drop from his shoulders.

"What do you mean, what was that? That was a kiss," Logan answered, indignation in his tone.

"Um, dude, no it wasn't," James said, shaking his head rapidly. "The time Carlos kissed you on a dare in the third grade lasted longer than—whatever that was."

Logan's eyes looked like they were going to pop right out of his head. "Oh God," he said, backing up, his expression horror-struck.

"What, what?" James spun around to look behind him, expecting to see some sort of ax-murderer. Or Kendall.

"I—I totally forgot about that!"

"Wait, what?" James asked, jerking back around to face Logan again. "How did you forget that? That's how you and Carlos met!"

"Yes, I remember that now!" Logan yelled back. He shuddered. "I don't know, I guess I…blocked it out, or something. God. Why did you have to remind me?!"

James narrowed his eyes, feeling a little offended on Carlos's behalf. "Hey, I don't think it would make Carlos feel very good if he saw you reacting like this—"

"Don't you tell him!" Logan shouted, pointing a finger at James. "He's probably blocked it out too, just let it stay that way!"

At this James rolled his eyes. "I really don't think he cares, Logan. That was like 10 years ago. And it was a dare."

"Yes, and we're never going to mention it again," Logan said, breathing heavy. "Are we, James?"

James huffed, torn between wanting to defend Carlos and wanting to get back to the topic at hand. "Whatever you say, Logan," he said, waving a hand in the air. "Now get back over here so we can do this right."

"What do you mean? We kissed, we're done," Logan said, but James could tell he didn't even buy it himself.

"No no no." James shook his head. "I might have gotten some things mixed up, but I distinctly remember the phrase 'make out' being used when we made this pact. A one-second peck doesn't even come close to cutting it, so quit stalling and let's do this."

Logan scrunched up his face at James. "You're insufferable sometimes, you know that?"

"Well the sooner we start the kissing, the sooner you can get away from me," James pointed out helpfully.

That got him a laugh. Logan seemed to be relaxed again, so James decided to take the initiative. He stepped closer to Logan, more slowly this time, and when Logan didn't react James put a hand on the back of his neck, making sure he didn't escape again. Their eyes met for the briefest of moments before Logan settled on watching James's mouth again. There was a fluttery feeling starting in James's stomach, stronger than before, but instead of giving himself time to worry about that or the tiny bit of fear in Logan's eyes James leaned down and kissed him.

At first all James realized was that Logan wasn't trying to pull away, which was a good sign. Then he noticed Logan had closed his eyes, and James smiled against Logan's mouth as he closed his own as well.

That was when the kiss really began, as Logan's whole body seemed to relax at once; James could feel it through his lips as well as the hand still on Logan's neck. Their lips started moving together slowly, and James pulled his hand back a little to rest it along Logan's jawline, brushing fingertips lightly against his ear on the way. Logan shivered at the touch, and for a second James was surprised, but then he remembered: Logan had sensitive ears. Everyone knew that.

James tilted Logan's head slightly, adjusting their angle, and that was better. Logan's mouth was open against his, and while Logan wasn't exactly kissing him back passionately, he wasn't exactly kissing back shyly either. With a little more encouragement on James's part there was a lot of potential for fun here.

He opened his mouth wider, licking along Logan's bottom lip to see how he reacted. Logan stopped moving completely, and maybe James had gone too far but no, no; Logan's lip was actually quivering against James's tongue, he was holding still because he liked it, not because it was too much. James was feeling pretty damn proud of himself, and it spurred him to run his fingers over Logan's ear again, just barely touching the skin.

"James," Logan breathed against his mouth, voice and body both shuddering. There was emotion behind the whispered word; something James was too preoccupied to identify, and something else he knew right away. Want. Tentative but there, and oh, it was on now. James grasped the side of Logan's neck as his tongue snuck into Logan's open mouth. The response was immediate; Logan's lips pushed against James's, inviting James to explore as much as he wanted.

Yes, this was definitely fun.

James's free hand reached up to grip Logan's side, right above his hip, and without really meaning to he gave the slightest tug. When Logan actually moved closer James didn't know what to do with himself. Then Logan's hand was on his shoulder, fingers digging in to match the pressure on his own skin. Logan's tongue was in James's mouth now, and the longer this kiss lasted the better Logan was getting at it; the desire to find out just how good Logan could be was the only thing keeping James from moving to kiss Logan's ear or neck or jaw—probably ear because he was really interested in seeing what that would accomplish, but—that was a hand grabbing at his shirt now, that was Logan's hand twisting the fabric, and it had been a brilliant idea to do this in one of the bedrooms, Logan really was a genius, and now James just needed to maneuver them a little to the left…

The knock on the door was a faint, faraway sound behind the beating of James's heart and his focused attention on any little noise that Logan made. He didn't hear the door open at all but suddenly Logan was gone; his lips, his tongue, the heat of his breath against James's face, even his hands. James was about to ask what the deal was when he saw the look on Logan's face, that ax-murderer look again, and when he turned around this time he found it wasn't for nothing.

Mrs. Knight was standing there, laundry basket in hand, shocked look on her face. It was an almost comically familiar sight, except this time what was there to say?

"We made a pact," James tried, and realized as he was saying it Logan had said the exact same thing. They looked at each other, James's expression mirroring Logan's, and then Logan took off, past Mrs. Knight and out the door and down the steps.

"Logan, wait!" James called out hastily, then tried to follow him but was blocked by Mrs. Knight.

"James?" she said, confusion and concern in her voice.

James didn't have time for this; something was telling him he needed to go after Logan. Now. Plus…he was still a little too turned on to be having a conversation with anyone's mom. "Um, any chance we could talk about this later, Mama Knight? Please?" He tried to give her his best hopeful-pleading look, and although he felt like he wasn't pulling it off very well Mrs. Knight was pretty much the coolest lady in the world, so she let him go.

"Fine. But just know—there will be a talk about this. Soon."

James smiled in relief. "Got it. Thanks!" he said, then shot out of the room and down the steps.

He barged into Logan and Kendall's room without knocking and scanned the room quickly. "Logan?" he called. There was no answer, and he didn't see Logan anywhere. He was about to go check the bathroom when he spotted the closed closet door, and crossed the room to investigate. When he tried the knob and found it was locked, he knew he'd found Logan.

He was in the closet because the only bedroom in the apartment that still had a locked door was Mrs. Knight and Katie's room. That had been a lesson learned the hard way when Carlos broke down the door to his own room one day, convinced James wasn't responding to him because he was suffocating under a pile of his own clothing. It turned out James—while appreciative of Carlos's concern, of course—wasn't even in the room; Carlos had accidentally locked it on his way out earlier in the day. To avoid any repeats, the replacement door didn't have a lock at all. Logan and Kendall had lost locking-door privileges a little later; that one was James's fault, because he thought locking Kendall out of his own room would be a hilarious way to spend an afternoon. (It totally was.)

Some time after that the guys reached a mutual decision: they needed someplace with a locked door, besides just the bathroom. So they pooled their money and bought locks for both closets, which Logan had installed. They were hardly ever used, but Logan had told them his theory that just having the option helped to keep tensions down. Somehow they had managed to keep the locks a secret so far.

And that's where Logan was now; he'd locked himself in his closet. James couldn't help giggling at it—Logan had just made out with another guy for the first time and now he was shut away in a closet. It was funny.

Except that it kind of wasn't, because James was knocking and saying Logan's name over and over but there was no response. What was Logan even doing in there?

A possibility struck James and his eyebrows shot up. "Dude, are you…" he started to ask, voice dropped to nearly a whisper. "You're not, like…y'know…touching yourself or anything in there, are you?" Still no response.

It wasn't a completely crazy idea to think that was what Logan might be doing. After all, he had just made out with James Diamond. James had that effect on people. And it had been a really hot kiss, even by James's standards.

Wondering if this made him a pervert, James pressed his ear against the door to see if he could hear anything. Really, he just wanted to make sure Logan was okay. Although if he wanted to continue where they left off that would be cool too.

James sunk down into a crouch, ear to the door the whole way until he finally caught a sound. It was nothing dirty, though. Just music. It was faint, but if it was loud enough to hear through the door it must have been blaring in Logan's ears. James strained to listen, and then he realized what it was. Jazz. Logan's go-to block-the-world-out music.

James sighed. Unless he suddenly learned how to pick a lock, or could figure out where Logan had hidden the key, there would be no getting through to him while he was in there. James sat down anyway, his back against the door, and tried to figure out what he would say to Logan when he got the chance.

He couldn't come up with anything. If he was lucky Logan was on the other side of the door figuring out the same problem, because Logan would definitely be able to come up with something.

James gave up on thinking about it and instead started thinking about this new world that was now open to him. Making out with Logan had been every bit as fun and hot and generally awesome as James had always suspected kissing a guy would be. He couldn't believe he'd waited so long to find out, but of course it was his own stupid fault he thought he had to. Still, as far as firsts went, Logan had definitely not been a disappointment.

So now what? There were too many places James could go from here. He started doing a mental review of all the guys that had ever flirted with him, and all the guys James had wanted to flirt with him. How many of them were still around, at the Palm Woods or in the neighborhood? He would have to find out. Then he'd have to rank them for current hotness levels, and figure out his plan of attack.

Look out, hot guys of Hollywood, James thought, smoothing his shirt down for no real reason. James Diamond is on the prowl.

He was just about to start daydreaming when there was a soft knock at the door. "Yeah?" he called out, knowing it had to be Mrs. Knight. Kendall wouldn't have knocked on his own door, and if Carlos bothered to knock it wouldn't have sounded like that.

The door opened slowly, just enough for Mrs. Knight to stick her head through. "Everything okay?"

James shrugged, then pointed behind him. "He won't come out," he said, and had to stifle another giggle. "And he's listening to music so he won't even talk to me."

"Can we talk, then?"

"We shouldn't wait for Logan?" James asked, basically trying to stall. He didn't really want to have this conversation. He just wanted to make out with hot chicks and hot dudes and not have to think too hard about it.

"I'll talk to Logan later when he's ready. Are you ready to talk now, James?"

He shrugged again. If he couldn't get out of it then whatever. "I guess."

Mrs. Knight stepped into the room and closed the door behind her, then sat on the edge of Kendall's bed. "So," she started, and it looked to James like he wasn't the only one who didn't really want to have this talk. "You guys made a pact?"

James nodded. "Freshman year. We both thought we might be kinda into guys, so we made a promise that if we still didn't know for sure when we got older we'd kiss each other to find out. Today we decided it was time to know." That was close enough, he figured. The details weren't that important.

"Oh," Mrs. Knight said, and that seemed to make her relax a little. "So it was just the one time? You and Logan aren't…secretly dating?"

James laughed. "No. That was the first time either of us had kissed a guy." He considered his next comment, then figured she was going to find out eventually anyway. "But I know for me it won't be the last time."

"Oh," she said again, eyes going wide. "So that means…you do like boys? Or…do you like Logan?"

The second question caught James off-guard. Why would she think that? "Logan's my friend," he said with a raised eyebrow, because duh. Mrs. Knight should know that. "But yes to the first question. I guess I'm halfway-gay, or no wait…" He knew the word, it just took a second sometimes. "Bisexual," he said, snapping his fingers as he remembered. "That's what I am."

"Oh," she repeated with a slow nod. "Okay, I've read enough parenting magazines to handle this." She took a deep breath.

"Handle what?" James asked, curious.

"Well, making sure you feel accepted and loved and…" she trailed off, looking at James closely. "You're not having any sort of crisis about this, are you?"

He grinned. "Are you kidding? It's awesome. I get to go on twice as many dates now." The grin faded as quickly as it appeared. "Why? Should I be having a crisis?" Maybe he hadn't thought this through very well. Maybe there were downsides he hadn't seen before.

"No, no, of course not," Mrs. Knight assured him, and James felt better. "You are accepted and loved, James. Always." She smiled, and James smiled back.

"Thanks, Mama Knight."

"Anytime, kid," she said, standing up. "But you are planning to tell Kendall and Carlos, right?"

"I hadn't really thought about it," James admitted. "They'll figure it out when I start dating guys."

"That's true, but…" She fixed him with one of those knowing-mother looks. "You should really think about telling them before that. In fact, after I talk to Logan you should probably all have a band meeting about it. Right or wrong, this could affect BTR."

Oh right. There was the downside. James could feel himself start to panic, and he jumped up from his spot on the floor. "Wait a minute, you don't think—"

"I don't know," she said, cutting him off with raised hands. "I'm not a public relations expert. Or a teenage girl. And I certainly don't mean you should ever hide who you are for the sake of your career, James. The guys will probably tell you the same thing. I just mean you might all want to be on the same page about this, because I know how important the band is to all of you. Now come here, I think you need a hug."

James was feeling suddenly far less secure about his newfound date-anyone-who's-hot policy, and a hug did in fact sound nice. He walked over and leaned against Mrs. Knight, letting himself be comforted.

"It'll be fine, James," she said, patting his back. "You guys can get through anything together, you've proven that more times than anyone could count."

"Logan could," James said, absent-minded.

Mrs. Knight chuckled. "Speaking of Logan, have you tried calling his phone?"

James pulled away from the hug as his eyes went wide. "That's a great idea! Do you think he'll answer?"

"I don't know, but it's worth a try."

"Yeah." He pulled out his phone, and Mrs. Knight took a step towards the door.

"Let him know I'm waiting to talk to him, okay? Whenever he's ready."

"Will do," he told her with a smile, and then she was out of the room. He pressed the button to call Logan as soon as the door closed, and got excited when he heard Logan's phone ring from inside the closet.

Unfortunately Logan didn't answer, but now that James knew he had his phone with him he could at least text. He thought for a second what he wanted to say before he started typing.

'Hey im waiting out here 2 talk 2 u. Just want 2 know ur ok?'

He sat down on the floor again, facing the door this time, waiting to see if Logan would respond. James set his phone in front of him and stared at it for what felt like forever, and then finally it beeped. He grabbed it and pushed the button eagerly, then scanned the text.

'Fine. I think. Just needed some time to figure stuff out. I told you I would.'

Now that he mentioned it, James vaguely remembered Logan saying something like that before their kiss. That was why he wanted to be in the bedroom, right? So no one would interrupt them and Logan would have time to think?

'Sorry we got caught', James sent back. For more than one reason, he added to himself.

The response was quicker this time. 'Not your fault. I should have been paying attention.'

James smiled, because Logan admitting he wasn't paying attention was the same as admitting he was too into the kiss to do so. He decided not to mention that, though.

'I told mama k about the pact. Not everything. Some. She wants 2 talk 2 u when ur ready. So do i'

James rolled his eyes at Logan's reply. 'We are talking.'

'U know what i mean', he sent back quickly.

When a couple minutes went by without his phone beeping again James sighed and sent another text.

'Ill wait in the living room 4 u. Let u know when c n k get home, tell them whatever u want me 2'

Another minute, and James had just stood up to leave when he got a reply.

'Thanks, J.'

James smiled at his phone, then his fingers were moving again before he could stop them.

'Ps ur a really good kisser l'

He waited until he heard the chime from Logan's phone, then was rewarded with a short, surprised laugh. James grinned and walked out of the room, closing the door behind him.

----

Part 3

Tags: big time rush, fic, james/logan
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