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22 January 2007 @ 07:28 pm
Title: You Belong to Me
Author: paparazzichick
Genre(s): Drama, Romance, Death
Rated: R
Pairing(s): Joe/Crystal and eventually...Brad/Crystal, Brad/Jen, Chester/Cali, Rob/Shelli
Warnings: Language, Mild Sexual Content, Violence
Summary: Crystal and Shelli meet the guys and Cali.

Notes: I don't own Linkin Park and this is just fiction. I also don't own Cali or Jen. I do, however, own Crystal and Shelli. The awesome banner was made by Cali!

Chapter 4: Start of Something New

“Will you stop fidgeting?” Shelli snapped.

“I just can’t help it, I’m excited!” Crystal exclaimed.

“Just try, ok. You know how I feel about planes.”

“You really need to get over that.”

“Well, there’s some things that you need to get over and haven’t.”

Crystal had stopped listening to Shelli because she knew where this conversation was going. At the moment, both of them were on a flight to California. Crystal couldn’t contain her excitement, so she was fidgeting to keep her hands busy. All that fidgeting made Shelli nervous because she hated flying, but she agreed to go on this trip with Crystal.

Shelli had moved away from her hometown because she was accepted to VCU in Richmond. Crystal came with her because she was tired of living with her parents. She was also tired of her dead end relationship with Joe.

“Do you think he’s changes much?” Crystal suddenly asked.

“Who, Joe? I doubt it,” Shelli replied.

“He has to have changed a little. He sounded older and more mature on the phone.”

“You also haven’t really talked to him in a while.”

“True, but I get the feeling that this isn’t some leisure trip. I think that it’s a sign!”

“Oh hell! If the guy hasn’t asked you out yet, he’s not going to. Besides, didn’t he tell you why he wanted you to come visit?”

“Yeah, he said that he wanted me to see how he was living now. He also said that it’s been too long since we last saw each other.”

“I wonder who’s fault that was.”

“Mine and you know it. I’m the one that moved, remember?”

“He wasn’t exactly begging you to stay either, remember?”

Crystal hated it when Shelli made sense. It just crushed her fantasies and snapped her back into reality. She seriously wished that Shelli would be wrong for once.


The plane landed around noon and both girls were glad for it. Shelli was delighted to finally feel the earth beneath her feet and Crystal desperately needed to use the restroom. She sped off in search of one while Shelli stretched for a moment. Shelli noticed that Crystal had a sudden burst of energy and attributed it to the fact that Crystal was now breathing the same air as Joe. Shelli used to hope that her friend would drop Joe, but she knew that would obviously never happen.

“Ready?” Crystal asked after coming back from the restroom. She was overly excited and it showed through the way she was speaking.

“Will you calm the fuck down?” Shelli snapped, thoroughly irritated with Crystal’s excitement.

“Gees, what’s your damage?”

“I’m tired and hungry; two things that definitely don’t go together.”

“Oh look, Burger King! We can get you something and at least solve half your problems.”

After Shelli was munching on her bacon and cheese Whopper, she wasn’t as annoyed with Crystal. Whilst Shelli was eating, she and Crystal were heading to the baggage claim. When they got there, Shelli was waiting for their bags to slide on the conveyor belt and Crystal ran off again. Shelli looked up to see where her friend went and she saw Joe. When Crystal saw him, she just couldn’t contain herself.

“Joe!” Crystal shrieked as she rushed up and hugged him.

“Hey, lil’ Chris. How’s it going?” Joe greeted while hugging and then releasing Crystal.

“God, you’re still calling me that? Let that nickname die, man,” Crystal said while frowning at the use of that nickname.

“I see some things haven’t changed,” Joe replied with a chuckle.

“Yeah, yeah…oh, who’s this?” Crystal asked, just noticing the blonde standing next to Joe. She hoped it wasn’t his girlfriend.

“This is Cali, she’s Chester’s girlfriend. Cali, this is Crystal, the friend I’ve been tell you about,” Joe explained.

“It’s nice to finally put a name to a face,” Cali said as she held out her hand.

Crystal smiled and shook Cali’s hand. She was relieved that Cali wasn’t Joe’s girlfriend because she didn’t think that she could calmly handle something like that today. As the group were talking, Shelli walked up with luggage trailing behind her. She had bought a rental pulley because Crystal wasn’t there to help her.

“You could have helped me, ya know,” Shelli snapped, instantly going back to being irritated with Crystal.

“Shelli, this is Cali. Cali, this is my friend, who is in desperate need of a mood change, Shelli,” Crystal said introducing the girls.

“You’re not Joe’s girlfriend, are you?” Shelli asked, ignoring Crystal’s sarcasm.

“Oh hell no! I’m with Chester. Joe wouldn’t be able to handle all this,” Cali joked.

“Ha ha, very funny,” Joe said as he rolled his eyes.

“You know, I like you already,” Shelli said.


Once Joe got all the girls’ luggage in his SUV, they were on their way to his house. Crystal was sitting in the passenger seat while the other two were in the back. Shelli and Cali were doing most of the talking, but Crystal would comment every now and then. Crystal was more interested in studying Joe as he drove than speaking. He still looked like the same guy she remembered, he just got taller and grew facial fuzz.

“Will you stop staring,” Joe said, noticing that she was indeed staring at him.

“I wasn’t staring. I was just noticing how different you look,” Crystal lied.

“What, are you mesmerized by my good looks?” Joe jokingly asked.

“What good looks?” Cali retorted and laughed.

“Seriously,” Shelli added and laughed as well.

“Anyway…what have you been up to?” Joe asked, completely ignoring the girls in the back.

“Nothing really. I’ve been taking some online courses and working at random places,” Crystal replied.

“Boring! While you are here, I’m going to make sure you have as much fun as possible,” Joe said.

Crystal smiled and was glad that Joe cared enough about her to say something like that. The rest of the conversation was about Joe because Crystal wanted to know what he had been up to these years. He talked about Linkin Park and the guys in the band. Crystal couldn’t wait to meet these guys, they sounded like interesting people


When they arrived at Joe’s place, Crystal was awestruck. She had never seen a mansion up close before and she couldn’t believe that it belonged to one of her friends. Shelli was just as shocked as Crystal. Then they guys came out to greet Shelli and Crystal. Both girls were taken by the attractiveness of the group of guys before them.

“So you’re Joe’s friend,” Mike said, talking to Crystal.

“Yep, guilty as charged,” Crystal replied, smiling.

“Joe, how could you be friends with this girl? She’s way too hot,” Brad joked.

“Shut-up! You’re not allowed to hit on Crystal, she just got here,” Joe replied.

They guys were joking and laughing about that. Crystal was blushing because she was absolutely flattered to hear such a thing. Brad was only half joking about her beauty, he really did think she was hot. He figured that if Joe didn’t want her, he would definitely take her. It had to be that exotic red hair on her head.

“Is your hair really red?” Dave asked as he twirled her hair in he fingers.

“I was wondering the same thing,” Brad said as he touched her hair too.

“Okay, this isn’t a petting zoo. It’s all natural, I assure you,” Crystal joked as she brushed their hands away.

“It’s really nice,” Brad said while flashing her a smile.

“Thanks,” Crystal replied with a smile of her own.

“Alright, let me show you the house lil’ Chris,” Joe interjected as he took Crystal’s hand and rushed off with her.

Joe was jealous that Brad was paying her extra attention. He didn’t like Crystal that way, but he felt that she was only his to have. He could handle Crystal having girlfriends, but he wouldn’t have Crystal getting close to any other guys.

Now the guys were shocked at Joe’s reaction. Joe had made it clear to them that Crystal was just a friend, so they couldn’t understand why he was getting so touchy.

“What was that about?” Rob asked.

“Yeah, and what did he call her?” Dave added.

“I think that’s her nickname,” Cali guessed.

“It is. Joe’s been calling her lil’ Chris for years. She hates it, but he calls her it anyway,” Shelli explained.

“It doesn’t suit her,” Chester commented and Cali gave him a look.

“So how long have you two known Joe?” Mike asked.

“Since middle school,” Shelli replied.

“That’s a long time and he never got with her?” Brad inquired.

“I told you guys that there is a possibility that your friend could be gay,” Cali said.

“They hooked up once,” Shelli confessed and they all looked at her in shock.

“What happened there?” Brad asked, eager for an answer.

“Joe was an ass and it just didn’t work out,” Shelli replied, not wanting to reveal too much of Crystal’s business.

They all wanted to know more, but Shelli wasn’t supplying them with answers. She felt that it wasn't her story to tell. She thought it was funny that Joe never talked about this stuff.

“If he doesn’t like Crystal like that, then why didn’t he tell his friends about this?” Shelli thought.


Later on, everyone was in the house just chatting. Crystal was telling Shelli about the house and decided to take her on the tour that Joe gave her. While the two of them were gone, the guys and Cali talked to Joe about his friends.

“Well, they’re nice,” Chester said.

“Yeah, Crystal’s friend isn’t at all like what you described,” Rob added.

“What, you like her?” Joe asked.

“I…I didn’t say that,” Rob mumbled, totally lying.

“What we really want to know about is your relationship with Crystal,” Brad stated.

“She’s just my friend like I told you guys already,” Joe said.

“So she’s free game?” Brad inquired.

“I guess, but what makes you think she’d like you?” Joe retorted, trying to hide his jealousy.

“What’s there not to like,” Brad said with a smile.

“Cocky much,” Mike joked and Brad playfully hit his shoulder.

Joe didn’t like the fact that Brad was interested in Crystal. He figured that Crystal would turn Brad down, so he had nothing to worry about.

As they were talking, Shelli and Crystal were having a conversation of their own. Shelli was talking about Rob and Crystal was tuning her out. Crystal realized how annoying obsessing over a guy was and decided to lay off the Joe conversations with Shelli. In fact, Crystal wasn’t as interested in Joe as she had been. She found her thoughts drifting to another guy now.

“Okay, which one is he?” Shelli asked, snapping Crystal out of her thoughts.

“Wait, what?” Crystal replied, not comprehending what they were talking about.

“The guy you were daydreaming about. Who is he?”

“Honestly! I don’t know why you’d think I was daydreaming about some guy.”

“Oh my god! It wasn’t Joe was it?”

Shelli was screaming with glee in her head. Crystal didn’t want to talk about it, so she proceeded to walk away. Shelli wasn’t going to let her off so easily. She jumped in front of Crystal to block her way.

“Spill it already,” Shelli advised and then added, “or do you want me to guess?”

“There’s nothing to tell,” Crystal replied, refusing to admit anything.

“Hmm, it was Brad, wasn’t it?” Shelli asked and Crystal blushed, “I knew it!”

“Keep your voice down!” Crystal snapped.

“Like someone’s going to hear us through these thousand rooms and well-insulated walls,” Shelli reasoned.

“I just don’t want anyone else to know and I know what you’re thinking. It’s just a crush Shelli, don’t get your hopes up,” Crystal stated.

“All I know is, this whole Joe thing is as good as done,” Shelli said.

Crystal wasn’t sure about all of that. She wasn’t ready to count Joe out yet.
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