Memories Part 1: The Gathering

Chapter 14

'What the heck is that?' Chip thought groggily to himself. He looked over to the clock; 7:35am. The tapping started again, accompanied by a worried sounding "Uncle Chip? Uncle Josh? Are you up yet?"

"Just a second, kiddo. I'll be right there." Chip replied. He then reached over and shook Josh. "Wake up Babe, we got company."

Josh grumbled something unintelligible, and then put on some sweatpants. "Okay, I'm decent."

Chip pulled on a pair of jeans and went over and unlocked the door to find Cory and Sean standing outside with worried looks on their faces. "Come on in guys. What's wrong?"

Once they were in the room with the door closed, Sean replied. "Cory is worried that he might be hurting me."

Chip and Josh exchanged glances, and then without a word between them Chip pulled Cory over to him while Josh put his hand on Sean's shoulder and headed towards the door. "Sean, why don't we go talk bottom-to-bottom while the two tops discuss technique, ok?"

Sean gave a half-smile. "I guess so. There are a few things I'd like to know."

Once both of them were gone, Chip sat on the edge of the bed and pulled Cory down next to him. "Okay, little one, why the sad face?"

Cory muttered "I'm worried that I could be hurting Sean. He woke up sore this morning, he said there's nothing wrong, but I'm worried."

Chip pulled Cory close. "Has he been bleeding when you were done?"

"No, I checked that close, but I'm still worried."

"Well, yesterday was you guy's first time, wasn't it?"

"Yeah" Cory replied.

"First off, did you use protection and lube?"

"Yep, Sean said he read it made it less painful that way."

"You are doing fine then. The pain he is feeling is a pain of satisfaction; it's something only you can give him, a reminder of your love. This may be personal, but how many times have you guys done it so far?"

Cory blushed as he held up four fingers.

"No WONDER he's sore!" Chip chuckled. "Just out of curiosity, how often you think Josh and I do it?"

"At least once a day?" Cory replied.

Chip giggled. "That's what everyone thinks. Actually, between you and me, we average three to four times a week. If you do it too much, it can hurt both of you, and it loses the special meaning. Most of the time, we either cuddle or do other things, in fact Josh has learned to convincingly fake 'the walk' just to mess with everyone else."

That set Cory to giggling. "You think he can teach Sean that?"

"He probably is right now if I know my husband!" Chip chuckled. "Seriously, Sean probably would let you make love to him ten times a day to keep you happy, and he would enjoy all ten times, it is up to you to control the tempo, so to speak."

"Do you have to do that with Uncle Josh?"

"Believe it or not, yes. In just about everything else he helps keep me on track, but in this case I have to make sure I keep control to protect him. In a way, it balances us out some."

Cory got a downcast look. "That makes sense, but what do we have if I have to control this too. It seems like everything is me watching out for him."

"Cory, I know you don't realize it, but Sean watches out for you in a lot of ways. You are naturally a dreamer, which is good. What Sean does is keep you from drifting too far from reality. That is part of the reason why you had the problems after Mike's death. Your brain is wired so that your emotions drive it. Sean has seen you lose control once; I guarantee he won't let it happen again."

"I guess so. What do you think they are talking about?"

"Believe it or not, probably you, Cory. Plus I'll bet Josh checks out Sean just to make sure he is OK, and then gives him some tips on how to cut down the swelling, which is normal for the first time."

"Thanks Uncle Chip. I feel better now. It's great knowing I can talk to you about this stuff. I'm so scared that I might do something wrong."

"Any time, Cory. You are family now, and I always look out for my family."

Cory reached over and pulled Chip into a hug to thank him. Just as they released the hug, Josh and Sean came walking in the door, both walking as if they had just finished a wild session of sex. Chip and Cory took one look and fell to the floor in laughter.

Once they recovered their senses, Sean spoke up. "Okay, you got me. That was NOT the reaction I expected. What was so funny?"

"Uncle Chip told me that Uncle Josh might teach you to walk like that; it was funny 'cause he was right! Besides, Uncle Josh would never do anything with you, and I know you would never do anything with him."

Sean walked over to Cory and hugged him tightly. "Thanks, Cor. Hearing you say that you trust me that much makes me love you even more!"

"I love you too, you overgrown teddy bear." Cory replied.

Josh cleared his throat. "Okay you two lovebirds, Whadda you say we grab some breakfast before we start getting ready for today."

That brought both boys back to earth. After Chip and Josh both pulled on their t-shirts and made themselves presentable, the four of them headed down to the kitchen. To their surprise, Anne was already there.

"Sit down guys. You going to have the usual, Chip?" Anne said with a smile.

"Yes, Ma'am. Why are you up so early?" Chip replied.

"You know me when kids are around, Chip. I heard these two moving around in the hall then going in your room, so I figured it was time to get up and start the coffee."

Anne set coffee in front of Josh and Chip and orange juice in front of Sean and Cory. She then set a bowl of fruit cocktail in front of Sean and Josh. When Sean gave her a confused look, she smiled. "Sean, a little advice. You really need to eat lots of fruit. It comes with the part you play in your relationship with Cory. Isn't that right, Josh?"

Josh looked at the blushing boys next to him. "Don't ask me, guys. She just knows somehow. Eat up, Sean!"

Just as Sean and Josh finished, Anne came back to the table with four plates. "Scrambled eggs with cheese and hash browns, that should be light enough for you guys today." Anne said as she refilled everyone's drinks.

As they were finishing eating, Cory looked over at Sean. "You know, we probably better go ahead and get ready. I'll bet the younger guys are gonna need our help getting dressed."

Sean downed the rest of his juice. "Yeah, you're right. Let's go. Thanks for breakfast, Gran'ma Anne."

Anne smiled. "Boys, that just made my day hearing you call me that. Go on, you have a rough day ahead of you. Ask your Uncles for help if you need it, okay?"

"Yes, Ma'am." Both boys replied as they headed for the stairs.

As they started to head back up, they were passed by Kevin and Brian, fully dressed in their suits, heading down and toward the door. A yell from the kitchen caused both boys to giggle as they went to their room.

"KEVIN SCOTT RICHARDSON? BRIAN THOMAS LITTRELL? Just WHERE do you two think you are going?" Anne asked in a loud voice.

Chip and Josh were still sitting at the dining room table when Anne raised her voice to her youngest son and nephew. They winced when she used their full names. 'Ouch,' Josh thought to himself. 'They're really in trouble now.' Both of them were trying to keep from laughing at the exchange between Anne, Kevin and Brian.

"We have to meet up with the rest of the group, Mom." Kevin replied.

"Not without something to eat you don't! Get your butts in here and sit! NOW!" Anne glared at both of them.

"Yes, ma'am." They replied as they shuffled to the table.

Kristin and Dylan were the next to come downstairs. They were laughing at Kevin and Brian. "I KNEW you two wouldn't get away with sneaking out!" Dylan said.

"Need some help, Anne?" Kristin asked.

That was more than Chip and Josh could take, as they broke down in laughter. "Lets go get ready, Babe." Chip managed to say to Josh as he struggled to his feet.


Sean and Cory had managed to wake the rest of the boys up, and sent them out to eat. As they filed out, Cory pulled Adam and Ty to the side. "Hey lil' bros, how are you holding up?"

"Fine." They replied.

"Today's gonna be rough for JJ and Kyle guys, they are gonna need a lot of support. Promise me if it gets to be hard on you that you will ask for help, okay?"

"We will." Adam replied. "Are you going to be okay, Cory? We talked last night, and JJ said he was worried about you, since you had problems after Mike died."

Sean walked up and put his arm around Cory. "Tell JJ not to worry about Cory, I'll make sure he is OK. Also, remind them that John will be watching out for their Dad, so they don't have to worry about him either."

The four boys embraced in a group hug. As the hug broke, Ty looked at Sean and Cory. "We'll make you proud, bros. I love all of you!"

That prompted another round of hugs and "I love you too's from everyone, then Ty and Adam headed out to the kitchen for breakfast, while Sean and Cory went upstairs and started setting out all of the boy's suits. Justin, Jamie, Jacob and Johnny headed out to the kitchen with the other boys.

Teri, Dan and John came down the stairs to find most of the boys quietly eating breakfast. As soon as they saw Dan; JJ, Adam, Kyle, and Ty ran over and gave him a huge group hug.

Dan gave a small smile as he kissed the top of all four boy's heads. "Thanks guys, I needed that. Go on and finish eating, ok?"

"OK Dad" the four answered.

"Where are Sean, Cory, Chip, Josh, Kevin and Brian?" Teri asked Anne.

Dylan replied, "They already ate. Kevin and Brian just left to meet up with the rest of Backstreet, while the rest are getting ready."

"Ahhh, okay. Why didn't you come to get me to help cook?"

Kristin chuckled. "No need, Teri. We handled this group just fine. The three of us are used to it. You deserved a break this morning, enjoy it, have a seat."

They all sat down, and shortly had drinks and steaming plates of food in front of them. Shortly the boys finished their meals, and headed upstairs in groups.

Josh was dressed in his suit, and was just helping Chip put the finishing touches on his uniform. "There ya go, handsome! You look even more outstanding than usual."

Before Chip could respond, they heard a chorus of knocks on the door. "Right on schedule!" Chip chuckled as he went over to open the door. Justin, Jamie, Jacob, and Johnny came into the room.

"WOW, you look AWESOME!" Jamie and Jacob said in unison when they saw Chip.

"Dad? Pop? Could you help us with these monkey suits?" Justin asked.

Josh grinned. "Come on guys, they are not THAT bad. Get on in here, you bet we'll help you."

Fifteen minutes later, in spite of the squirming, the four boys were fully suited and ready to go, so the six of them headed downstairs.

In the other bedroom, the rest of the boys were getting ready. "You know, Cory, I'm glad someone thought to pre-tie the ties!" Sean commented as he placed the finishing touches on JJ's suit. "Come on over here, Adam, it's your turn."

"For real!" Cory replied. "It's awesome how they all fit us so well, I wonder who got them?" He then gave Ty a swat on the butt and moved over to Kyle.

"Uncle Chip had something to do with it, I'd bet!" Sean giggled. "He seems to have made sure everything else went well!"

"True." Cory then pulled his charges close to him. "Ty, Kyle, you guys look great. Are you going to be ok?"

"Yeah, I think so." Kyle replied.

"If you need anything, no matter what, you guys let me know, ok?"

Kyle hugged Cory. "We will, bro. Thanks!"

Sean put a hand on JJ's and Adam's shoulders. "Same goes for you two, promise?"

JJ gave a small smile. "Yeah, we promise too. We owe you forever, Sean, you too Cory. One of these days I PROMISE we will return the help you have given us."

The six boys embraced, and then left the room to head downstairs.

As John was helping Dan make sure everything was right, Dan spoke softly. "I'm worried. Are the boys going to be ok?"

"Just take care of yourself, Dan." John replied. "I know for a fact their boyfriends are going to be watching over them like hawks, and Sean and Cory will probably be watching over the boyfriends. Besides, I'm gonna be right by your side the entire way, and if I see they need anything either I'll do it or I'll tell you. Now relax, lets go join the others."

"Thanks John. I don't know what I did to deserve you, but I'm sure glad you are here now." Dan then hugged John as they headed for the door.

When they opened the door, they found Chip, Josh, and all the boys coming out of their rooms. Everyone gathered into one group, and headed down the staircase.

Teri, Anne, Kristin and Dylan were standing in the kitchen when they heard everyone coming down the stairs.

"WOW!!" Teri exclaimed, "How did Kevin ever manage to get all those suits to fit so well. All of them look perfect!"

Chip overheard her. "Actually Teri, he had a little help." Teri gave Chip a confused look. Chip continued, "Let's just say that the Enterprise's scanners are very sensitive with the right person at the controls."

Teri shook her head, smiling. "Chip, I'm beginning to believe that with you around almost nothing is impossible. Let's load up; the limos are waiting outside."

As they walked out, they split into two groups to enter the waiting limos. In the first limo were Anne, Kristin, Dan, John, JJ, Adam, Kyle and Tyler. The second limo had Teri, Chip, Josh, Dylan, Cory, Sean, Justin, Jamie, Jacob and Johnny. Once loaded, both limos slowly pulled out and headed towards the funeral home.

As per Sharon's wishes, there was no viewing beforehand. She wanted everything to be concluded in one day. When they were about halfway there, John's cell phone rang.


"John, this is Kevin. We have a problem."

"What's wrong, Kev?"

"Seems that someone found out that we're in town and here."

"OK, I'll get some help over right away. See you in a few."

"Thanks, John."

John hung up, and then dialed the dispatch direct line. "Sergeant, this is Sheriff Martin. You have the address where the funeral is at today, right?"

"Yes sir."

"We need all available units out there for crowd control. It seems someone leaked where the Backstreet Boys are going to be today."

"They are on their way."

"Thanks. Make sure I'm marked as emergency only."

"You are. Please send our condolences too."

"Will do. I'll call once I'm done. "Bye"

John then looked up Chip's number on the speed dial. "Chip, it's John. Seems that someone blabbed and now Backstreet has a bunch of fans outside."

"How bad?"

"Bad enough for Kevin to call me. I've got some units on the way to assist. Do you think you might be able to get some backup?"

"Give me 30 seconds and we'll find out." Chip handed the phone to Josh as he pulled out his communicator and opened it. "Dodds to Enterprise."

"Enterprise, Uhura here. What's wrong, Chip?"

"I need to speak to the Captain. It seems that the funeral home is being surrounded by Backstreet fans."

"He just heard you, Chip. He said not to worry. An honor guard of fifteen, led by Lieutenant Thompson, is preparing to beam down as we speak."

"Thanks, Nyota. Pass on my gratitude to him, will you please?"

"It's done Chip. I'll see you tomorrow."

"Thanks again, Nyota. Dodds out."

Chip retrieved the phone from Josh. "It's handled, John. An honor guard from the Enterprise is on their way down right now."

"Thanks Chip. That should get their attention. Talk to you in a few."

"OK. Let's hope this is the only problem we have to deal with today."

"Agreed. Bye."


A few minutes later, the limos pulled up to the funeral home. As the first one pulled even with the doorway, the Enterprise's honor guard formed a passage between the car and the doorway. Once everyone was inside, they pulled back and let the second limo pull up.

Chip was the last to exit from the limo, and the Guard formed into ranks behind him as he walked to the doorway. Before he entered, he turned to Thompson, the lieutenant in charge. "Coordinate with the local authorities. I want all the back entrances sealed. Station two men at the front door. That should deter any crashers. And one other thing, give everyone my thanks for doing this on short notice."

"Will do, Commander. You worry about your family. We'll take care of everything out here."

Chip smiled, knowing that Thompson would be good at his word. He then entered the door, and saw Kevin talking to JJ and Kyle. Both boys gave Kevin a quick hug, and then headed off into the hallway.

"What was that all about, Kev?" Chip asked.

"The guys and I figured out a way for the boys to say goodbye, and I was just asking them about it. You'll see, I think it will work quite well."

Chip shook his head as he then walked into the viewing room. He looked around, and noticed that all the couples were sticking close to each other, all being watched closely by Anne and Teri. Just as he was entering, JJ and Adam were saying goodbye to Sharon. The only others left in line were Kyle with Tyler, Dan with John, and Anne.

Josh walked up to Chip. "I was waiting for you, hun. Let's get in line, and then I'm going to man the piano for the Boys."

"Sounds good. How's everyone holding up?"

"Pretty good. The support from their loved ones seems to be working."

Chip watched as John led Dan away to his seat, crying but not out of control. Once Anne finished saying goodbye, he and Josh went up together, their arms around the other's waist. "Sharon," Chip said softly, "We're sorry we never met while you were alive, but I promise you this: we'll make sure Dan and your sons are taken care of for the rest of their lives."

As they walked toward Dan to make sure he was okay, Kyle came up and tapped Chip on the leg. Chip knelt down to face Kyle. The young boy hugged Chip. "Mommy said 'Thank You'." Kyle whispered in Chip's ear. Chip pulled Kyle into a hug and gave him a quick peck on the forehead.

Once he was sure Dan was okay, Josh went over to the piano and had a seat. He looked towards the doorway, and as soon as Kevin gave him the signal, he started playing.

The room fell silent as the Backstreet Boys assembled behind the podium and began singing "Amazing Grace". The room was silent as they finished, everyone wiping tears from their eyes. Kevin stepped to the front of the group. "My nephews were having a hard time with coming up with a proper way to say goodbye to Sharon, so they asked our help. Instead of a speech, they are going to sing their dedication to their mom. They have asked that the extended family of brothers they have been blessed with join them in this tribute. Boys, could you all come up here please?"

All the boys came up, Aaron giving Johnny to Anne before him and David joined them. JJ and Kyle stood in front, with Adam and Tyler at their sides. Behind them were the rest of the boys, with the Backstreet Boys creating a third row.

Josh started playing, and when it came time for the vocals JJ and Kyle sang them together, with everyone else acting as backup singers. The overall effect was as if it was being sung by a choir.

It takes a lot to know what is love
It's not the big things, but the little things
That can mean enough
A lot of prayers to get me through
And there is never a day that passes by
I don't think of you
You were always there for me
Pushing me and guiding me
Always to succeed

You showed me
When I was young just how to grow
You showed me
Everything that I should know
You showed me
Just how to walk without your hands
'Cause Mom you always were
The perfect fan

God has been so good
Blessing me with a family
Who did all they could
And I've had many years of grace
And it flatters me when I see a smile on your face
I wanna thank you for what you've done
In hopes that I can give back to you
And be the perfect son

You showed me
When I was young just how to grow
You showed me
Everything that I should know
You showed me
Just how to walk without your hands
'Cause Mom you always were
The perfect fan

You showed me how to love
You showed me how to care
And you showed me that you would always be there

I wanna thank you for all that time
And I'm proud to say you're mine

You showed me
When I was young just how to grow
You showed me
Everything that I should know
You showed me
Just how to walk without your hands
'Cause Mom you always were
The perfect fan

'Cause Mom you always were, Mom you always were
Mom you always were, you know you always were

'Cause Mom you always were ... the perfect fan

I love you Mom

("The Perfect Fan" © 1999 Backstreet Boys and Zomba Recording Corporation. Available on the "Millennium" CD)

A tearful pair of boys directed the last verse directly at Sharon. Their boyfriends pulled them close, not caring what anyone thought. Everyone up front was paying attention to the two boys, so none noticed that the dedication had brought the entire room to tears, including the preacher.

Anne coming up front got their attention though, when she gave an unplanned dedication from the heart. "I know a lot of you don't know me, I'm Daniel's long lost mother, Anne Richardson. Unfortunately, I found Dan too late to be able to meet Sharon, but in the last few days I have learned much about her. All of which was just proven right by the tribute her sons just arranged with the help of their Uncle Kevin, Daniel's younger brother. I know I can speak for a lot of you when I say Sharon was an honest, caring soul who did whatever she could for others, something her sons have learned quite well. For the rest of my life, when I hear that song, it will be Sharon that I think of. Thank you, Sharon. Your legacy lives on in these two fine boys here." Anne re-took her seat, wiping tears from her eyes.

The preacher stepped up, still wiping tears from his eyes, and gave his sermon, then everyone went out to the cars to head to the cemetery.

There were four limos behind the hearse. Anne, Daniel, John, Kevin, Kristin, JJ, Kyle, Adam, and Tyler entered the first; Sharon's family were in the second; Teri and all her boys, Chip and Josh with their boys in the third; Joe, Aaron, David and the rest of the Backstreet Boys with their families were in the fourth. Behind the limos were twenty-four other cars, making for a fairly long procession.

Once the graveside services were finished, everyone headed towards the cars except Dan, JJ and Kyle. The three of them stood next to the gravesite for a few minutes, both boys under Dan's arms, before they turned and joined the others. Once Sharon's family finished with their condolences, everyone got into the limo's for the ride home.

Once they reached the house, everyone filed into the rec room.

"I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm going to get comfortable." Chip said, unhooking the shoulder strap of his uniform.

"What should we do with the suits?" JJ asked.

"Lay them up, they're yours." Chip replied with a smile.

"Wow, thanks Uncle Chip!" JJ replied.

"Chip, I've been meaning to ask: how did you get all these suits, which look tailor made, for all of us without getting any sizes?" Said Dan.

"Actually, it was quite simple. Mr. Spock scanned everyone here from the Enterprise, then sent the results to the Starfleet uniform depot. The clothes were all delivered to Southcrest just before Aaron and David left, so they brought the suits with them."

"Ahhh, mystery explained. Thanks, Cuz, I owe you one."

"You take care of your sons; that's payment enough for me. Now let's all get out of these clothes and into something comfortable, and then meet back down here. I've got something to take care of."

Thirty minutes later, everyone had managed to change, and joined Chip in the rec room. Chip had brought down two garment bags with him.

"What are those two packages, Uncle Chip?" Cory asked.

"I thought you would never ask. Here, this one is yours, this one's Sean's. They are clothes, I'll tell you that much. Go upstairs, open them AFTER you are in your room. Put them on and come back down."

About a minute later, "HOLY SMOKE!" was heard being yelled from upstairs. Shortly thereafter, Sean and Cory came flying down the stairs wearing Starfleet uniforms tailored to them.

"Wow, Uncle Chip, these are AWESOME!" both boys exclaimed in unison.

"I'm not done yet - come here, guys!"

Sean and Cory hopped over to Chip, faces plastered with huge grins.

"Cory, Sean. ATTENTION!" Chip said in his best imitation of a drill instructor.

Both boys snapped to attention, still grinning from ear to ear.

"Josh, the boxes I gave you, please?" Chip asked.

Josh handed Chip what looked like two jewelry boxes with a big smile.

"Cory, Sean. By order of Captain James T. Kirk of the Starship USS Enterprise, I hereby award you both the rank of Acting Ensign. This gives you the privileges and responsibilities of a full Ensign, without the pay. In these two envelopes are your orders." Chip then pinned the Ensign pins onto each of their uniforms and then handed each of them an envelope.

Both boys carefully opened the envelopes, and smiled as they read them.

"Hey you two, what do they say?" Nick said.

Cory went first:

From: Captain James T. Kirk

USS Enterprise NCC-1701-A

To: Ensign Cory P. Short

Des Moines, Iowa, USA, Earth

Re: Duty Orders

Ensign Cory Short;

You are hereby ordered to report to Starfleet Academy in San Francisco, California no later than thirty days following your graduation from High School. Upon successful completion of the Engineering course at the Academy, you are hereby instructed to report to the Chief Engineer aboard the USS Enterprise in person by the fastest means possible.

Welcome aboard, Cory. Mr. Scott and myself look forward to working with you.

(Signed) Captain James T. Kirk

"I'm gonna frame this, this is awesome!" Cory said in awe after he finished reading it.

"What's yours say, Sean?" Dylan asked.

Sean read his aloud:

From: Captain James T. Kirk

USS Enterprise NCC-1701-A

To: Ensign Sean M. Short

Des Moines, Iowa, USA, Earth

Re: Duty Orders

Ensign Sean Short;

You are hereby ordered to report to Starfleet Academy in San Francisco, California no later than thirty days following your graduation from High School. Upon successful completion of the Helmsman course at the Academy, you are hereby instructed to report to the Chief Helmsman aboard the USS Enterprise in person by the fastest means possible.

Welcome aboard, Sean. Mr. Dodds, the rest of the bridge crew, and myself all look forward to working with you.

(Signed) Captain James T. Kirk

"Wow, are these for real, Uncle Chip?" Sean asked in shock.

"Yes they are guys. And to prove how real they are, you both are required to wear those tomorrow."

"What's tomorrow?" Anne asked as she came in from the kitchen. "Congratulations, boys. Those look great on you!"

"Doctor Grouch wants to do a follow-up checkup on the twins, plus I think he has decided that he needs to be the family doctor for the rest of the boys" Josh replied.

"I'll make sure to tell him you called him that, right before your next physical!" Chip chuckled. "Actually, everyone's invited up by the Captain for a tour; the physicals are just Dr. McCoy's way of saying he approves."

"OK, but if the old crab gets out of line, I'm giving him a piece of my mind. Everyone get cleaned up, dinners almost done. Cory, Sean, could you please change so the uniforms look nice for tomorrow?"

"Yes, gran'ma!" they replied as they headed for the stairs.

Teri joined Anne in the kitchen. "Mom, let me help with setting things out. I've seen smaller armies than the group here right now."

Working together, they managed to get everything set up by the time everybody returned. The main topic of discussion over dinner was Cory and Sean's appointment to Starfleet Academy; which buoyed everyone's mood since it took their minds off of the day's earlier events. Once dinner was finished, the band left to their motel, and everyone began winding down to hit the sack early.

"Sean," Cory said lovingly, "if you want, we can sleep with the rest of our brothers tonight. All I ask is you cuddle me, Okay?"

"I love you, Cor. As long as it's OK with you, let's do it."

"I love you too, teddy bear, let's pick a spot and cuddle."

A few minutes later, Teri made the rounds shutting off lights. As she looked in the rec room, she saw Sean and Cory cuddled in the middle of the room, with the rest of the couples cuddled up close to them behind Cory. Justin, the twins, and Johnny made their own little pile snuggled up close to Sean's back. She smiled, turned the light down low, and headed to bed.

As Josh and Chip were preparing for bed, Josh came up and began rubbing Chip's shoulders. "You did great today, hon. And the joy you just brought to those two boys tonight was worth its weight in gold. I'm very proud of you!"

"Ummm ... you are putting me to sleep, babe. Thanks, and by the way, I love you!" Chip replied sleepily.

"I love you too, hun. Let's get some sleep"

The house fell silent as everyone rested in preparation for the big day tomorrow.