nsync in black and white

Disclaimer: this is fiction. We made it up.

Life's Driving Strength

by Mary, written for Lydia

"Artists lead unglamorous daily lives of discipline and routine, but their work is full of passion.
Each has a vision and feels responsibility to that vision."

Merryl Brockway

Another day, another class, and Justin's head was starting to spin from the tiredness running throughout his body. He didn't know why, but his muscles were screaming for him to stop moving but he pushed himself the way he always did. Somewhere in the back of his mind, he remembered the last time he had done this to his body, but he pushed the memory away because there was no way he was going to stop and take a break, not when all five instructors were there for the first time in weeks to see their progress. There were talks about someone being let go today for one reason or another, that there might possibly be two people and he refused to give them a reason to stop him from dancing.

"Focus!" Elena yelled out and her gaze tightened on Justin and he tightened his jaw at the clenching of his screaming muscles and continued dancing until the music stopped and he dance was over for now. "Five minutes," she announced. "Then we do it again."

He made his way to the side where his bag was and grabbed the water bottle, downing it almost in one gulp. His face contorted in pain when he stretched his neck out and he tried to work out the kinks in his arms, his legs, but the pulsing was still there, angry at him for not listening to their aching sighs. "Are you okay?" Monique was staring at him in concern and he nodded. "Are you sure?"

"Yeah, yeah, fine," he managed to sigh but now his voice was hoarse and he cursed whoever was listening and threatened bodily harm if he got sick now. "I'll be okay." He leaned down to put the bottle away and held his head as he stood up, closing his eyes to will away the pain and when he opened his eyes again, JC and Kelliana were standing in front of him, concern on their faces. He jerked back in surprise and Kelliana reached a hand out to steady him.

"Justin?" he could hear the question in her tone.

"I'll be okay. Just a wave of dizziness, that's all." He tiredly made his way to the group of dancers on the floor and JC stopped him. "I'm fine."

"Justin, there's a difference between passion and craziness. Don't go out there if you're sick, you'll make it worse."

"Would you skip out on a performance if you were sick?" JC stayed silent and Justin nodded. "Okay, then."

"He's pushing himself," JC said bluntly to Kelliana as they made their way past Studio 1 to leave the building. "You can tell he's sick."

"Josh, if he wants to keep dancing, you can't tell him otherwise. You'd be doing the same thing."

"Yeah I know," he paused in his walking and turned towards the studio. "Did you leave the sound on in 1?" She shook her head. "It sounds like something's on. You go ahead, I'll make sure everything's okay." He gave her a quick kiss. "See you tomorrow." He turned back around and walked to the back door of Studio 1 and leaned his head in after turning the knob slowly. His breath caught in his throat.

Justin's body was made to be a dancer. There were broad shoulders and muscled arms that moved down into slim hips with strong legs. He was made to lift other dancers and to move gracefully on his own and JC watched as the young dancer moved to the low humming of the radio. He could tell Justin was just moving, that there was no thought behind each step, but every move was perfectly executed.

"You make it look easy."

Justin stopped his dancing immediately and twirled around. "Oh, wow, you scared me."

"I'm sorry," JC apologized. "I heard something and wanted to make sure everything was okay."

"Yeah, it's just me," Justin smiled. "Thanks, by the way." JC nodded. "It helps to just forget all the dances we're taught sometimes and just let go," Justin explained.

"I wasn't asking for an explanation."

"Oh," he stayed silent, feeling uncomfortable in the awkward silence that followed. "I'm sorry for the comment upstairs."

"Don't worry about it," JC shrugged. "I worry about other dancers but as Kelliana was quick to point out, I would have done the same thing." His eyebrows drew together. "How are you feeling?"

"A little rundown, a little tired, but nothing a weekend won't fix." His stomach grumbled. "Or food, apparently. I probably got that way because I forgot to eat lunch."

"You forgot?" There was disappointment in his voice.

"Yeah. I get caught up sometimes," Justin admitted. "I know it's not good, but don't get mad at me or anything, please?"

JC shook his head. "I wasn't going to. I was just going to ask if you wanted to go get food."

"Oh," Justin looked surprised. "With you?"

"Well, no one else is around."

"Good point," Justin said under his breath. "Sure, yeah." He couldn't help but smile when JC smiled at him again.

Justin learned that JC was a lot different outside of the studio. He laughed more which made his eyes crinkle up into tiny slits that reminded Justin of a cat. He was a lot more relaxed and talked freely about his other passions in life like reading and writing songs. His voice was a bit deeper but that may have been due to the wine he was drinking and refused to let Justin try because he was still underage.

His eyes weren't just blue either, like Justin's. They were this intense, icy blue that held Justin's attention over the food they were having at a small restaurant JC claimed to love. In the back of his mind, Justin wondered if they were always that same shade of blue.

JC was a passionate man and Justin couldn't help but wonder if that meant in all things the man did and then he wondered if his eyes stayed the same shade when he was being passionate in bed. Immediately after the thought filtered his mind, Justin grabbed JC's wineglass and downed the liquid in it before anything could be said.

"Where've you been?" Louis said the minute JC walked into their apartment. "Get lucky? Finally?"

"No," JC grinned and smacked a kiss onto his roommate's cheek. "But I had fun."


"The Café."

"Who were you with?" JC's cheeks tinged pink and Louis sidled up next to him. "You're blushing. Who were you with?"

"None of your concern," JC responded hotly.

"Was it that Lance guy?" JC shook his head, making a face. "Okay. Did an ex-boyfriend come back to town?"

"Yeah, right."

"Did you pick up someone random at the studio?" Louis noticed it. "You twitched at the word studio." A slow smile appeared on his lips. "It wasn't someone random." He narrowed his eyes and studied his friend's face. "Jordan or Justin?"


"Jordan? Or Justin?"

"I'm taking a shower."

"Oh, come on, I narrowed it down already. Help me out a little!"

Justin picked up his phone and dialed a number. "Brit?"

"J?" There was a pause. "What the hell are you doing calling me now?"

"I had to tell you something."

"Okay, tell me so I can go back to sleep."

Justin grinned. "Maybe I like him." Then he hung up.




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