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Do You Ship Us? - 21. Teasing

“Are we seriously going to the TMA’s?!” Luke asks excitedly before Chris even walks through the door. He stops and frowns at the looks on everyone's faces, excited anticipation.

“Yes, how did you know?” Chris gives him a suspicious look.

“Our fans are scary at hacking things. They always leak the list for those events.” Blake smirks, showing Chris the list of performers that had been circulating Twitter in the last half hour.

"I am lowkey afraid of our fans. They could probably find nuclear release codes and uncover government corruption. But they are too busy writing fanfiction and searching for any mention of our names and over analyzing photos like they are body language experts." Jasper says jokingly to Blake.

"World war 3? Nah sorry, busy writing smut about two straight dudes getting freaky." Blake jokes back, but Jasper doesn't laugh the way he use to over those kinds of comments. He felt both guilty for having not told Blake about his sexuality, and really worried that Blake would judge him, get weird around him and just generally be uncomfortable with him if he knew that Jasper wasn't straight. He wasn't attracted to Blake, but the way their friendship was relied heavily on them being more comfortable with each other than they probably should be. He didn't want to lose that, not for anything.

“Yes, we are on the list to perform, with a few other boybands. It should be a great night, teenage audience and voters so we’ll be pulling out all the stops to make sure we get the highest votes for the night. For this, I’m going to ask Ryan to choreograph an easy dance piece with back-up dancers for your partners, it will need to be appropriate for the audience of course but I think that will really set us aside from the other boybands we’re up against, show what we've got that they don't. Also Jasper, the fans are all hoping for some fanservice, since your little moment in the interview the other day, BlaSper fans are feeling a bit dismissed. I know how much you don't want to let them down.” Chris tells them handing out some information about what their plan was for the night, the songs they would be singing and what time they were going to be on stage along with the list of other bands in their category.

"Naww our babies." Blake puts his hand on Jasper's shoulder. "They will never give up hope for us, don't worry." He smirks. "Not with the narrative they have running that I've corrupted you. Sweet little church boy falls in love with the Emo badass. Ryan can't compete with that kind of chemistry. What's RySper got going for it anyway?" He teases, looking at Ryan like he's challenging him. Ryan considers for a moment, a smile on his face.

"I don't know, the singer accidentally falls in love with the dancer trope?" He offers.

"Pft. Cheesy." Blake scoffs. "Where's the depth in that?"

"Other than maybe the power exchange of me being romantically confident and Jasper falling apart around me because he's the 'sweet little church boy' that is confident at everything except romance. That would be my guess." Ryan shrugs, not looking at Jasper, thankfully, because Jasper felt like he was made of glass and Ryan could see right through him.

"You guys have fun fighting over me." Jasper shrugs Blake's hand off his shoulder and has a sip of water to avoid having to add anything to this conversation, heading over to Luke and Simon to read the information Chris gave them.

"Are you saying you're a dom?" Blake asks Ryan and Jasper starts choking on his mouthful of water and regrettably having everyone's attention now on him, Luke, Simon and Chris frown at him then look over at Blake and Ryan confused.

"I'm fine." Jasper coughs, he could only hope Ryan wasn't looking at him right now.

"What'd you do, deep throat your water bottle?" Blake jokes, coming over and patting Jasper's back. "At least you know your gag reflex works." Blake was on a roll today and Jasper was trying to will himself to die before Blake could make another comment.

"I was trying to drown myself, obviously." Jasper rolls his eyes. "So the show." He deflects back to what they were meant to be talking about.

“This will be an amazing show.” Luke grins, reading the list of bands performing with them and passing it to Jasper to peruse.

“This is such a great line-up. I don’t even care if we win, it’s going to be so much fun to watch the others perform too, and I seriously hope we get to have an after party with these guys.” Jasper says as he skims the page.

“Yes, you get to attend the after party but this isn’t a social event, this is for more attention for the band and to generate excitement for your next album, which we will get started on after this performance. So I expect you to all bring me some drafts in the next week.” Chris orders, looking at the reluctant expressions on their faces. “What, that’s part of being in a band you know? First album, tour, second album. More music, new music. Get to it.” Chris snaps his fingers at them and turns and walks out. “Oh and Ryan, fans went crazy over your post last night, more photos like that would definitely get you more love.”

“More love is what I was aiming for.” Ryan licks his lips and just smiles at the group, noticing that Jasper was avoiding looking at all in his direction.

“What’d you post last night?” Luke asks, looking over at Ryan.

“Didn’t you see, he posted a shirtless selfie on Instagram, which is now circulating every social media. It’s impossible to have not seen it. I have had to give up social media until the onslaught of reposts from thirsty fans settles down.” Jasper complains he takes out his phone and opens Twitter, turning the phone around to show Luke. “See, first photo. Let’s scroll down. Ah yes, there it is again, three posts down from the last one. Same photo, different horny phrases. Fans are having an absolute fit over it."

“So, Ryan. Posting shirtless photos on instagram. Obviously you’re getting more confident.” Luke teases him, with an impressed expression.

“I was in a good mood last night.” Ryan shrugs, glancing at Jasper who quickly gets out of his phone and puts it away in his pocket, very focused again on pretending to read the forms.

“You’re not the only one who was in a good mood last night.” Blake smirks at Jasper, patting his back again.

“Shut up.” Jasper glares at him warningly. “Speaking of good moods, Blake was out on a date last night, with my ex.” Jasper smoothly deflects the attention from himself again.

“Better than being on a date with my hand.” Blake’s comment is thankfully unheard by anyone but Jasper because Simon and Luke were immediately asking about his date with Beth before the second convenient interruption, Fi, comes into the room, taking the attention from Blake. Jasper gives him a quiet ‘I will punch you’ threat under his breath.

“Only if you’ve washed your hands.” Blake winks at Jasper, killing the banter today.

“One more comment, I swear to god.” Jasper grits his teeth. Blake looks at him with consideration. Deciding he couldn't resist the urge to keep pushing his luck.

“A bit touchy today?” Blake smirks then laughs as Jasper lifts his fist and punches him in the arm. “Ow.” Blake rubs his arm, still laughing. “Surprisingly hard punch, that really hurt. Those one handed work outs are giving you muscles."

“Yeah? Well I hope that was your wanking arm.” Jasper rolls his eyes, he had to admit he was impressed by Blake's persistence and wit today but he really couldn't stand any more comments.

“You sure you were doing it right? Normally people are a little less bitchy when they’ve relieved themselves.” Blake grins, he won, Jasper had nothing left to give. Jasper just gives him the finger and walks away.

“Hey Fi.” Luke beams as she walks in, short red dress with black crisscross patterned stockings and a black chunky scarf around her neck.

“Morning boys.” She approaches the group, playing around with her tablet. “So, good news. Since Jasper told off Chris for putting you in those suits you all hated, he’s requested that you use them for your stage performance.” She smiles knowing the guys were not going to love the idea. There's a collective groan of disapproval but they had gotten out of wearing them once, so the figured it wasn't worth fighting this one.

“Good, Ryan could do with some more coverage after the photo he showed last night.” Jasper comments, finally making the mistake of glancing around to Ryan, who was standing almost right behind him now. Ryan's eyes meet his and a smirk crosses his face immediately. As if Jasper hadn't suffered enough yet today, his brain now unhelpfully decided to throw a thought in there of Ryan with that smirk on his face, the sheet over his waist slipping as he held himself above Jasper, pinning him to the bed. Jasper licks his lips, gulps and looks away before he gets himself in to uncomfortable state in front of everyone. Back to the conversation everyone else was having, about their styles for the upcoming show.

“Well I guess I can’t die my hair until after the stage show. I want to go blood red.” Blake runs his fingers through his hair and looks at Fi who was just smiling at him.

“You would totally rock that colour. I’ll dye it for you if you want.” She offers, flicking through and looking at the suit he’d be wearing. “It might clash but why put it off for a one time outfit.” She says with a shrug.

“You’re in a very good mood today Fi.” Simon smiles at her, she looks at him and smiles. “It’s good to see, you deserve it.”

“Thanks. Things have been good lately.” She hugs her tablet to her chest and sighs. “Any other requests for style changes?” Fi asks, looking over at Jasper. “Do you want to go a shade lighter? Get streaks or something.”

“You’re the stylist. Make whatever changes you want to make, I trust your judgement.” Jasper replies, he couldn’t concentrate on anything right now. He was being so quiet and on the outside of the group that he stood out.

"You ok?" Ryan asks, if he had any idea of all the thoughts Jasper had been having of him he'd understand why he was this silent. Jasper turns and gives him a smile.

"Oh, I'm just plotting." Jasper states then before anyone could ask, he walks out of the room. Running on this strange euphoria of just how good it'd be to be able to tell Ryan that he'd heroically stood up to Chris for them all.

“Come in.” Chris yells out as Jasper knocks on the door. “What is wrong now?” He sighs throwing his pen down on the desk, while Jasper just walks in with a satisfied smile to have the reputation proceed him of being that much of an annoyance.

“I have some concerns about our contract.” Jasper pulls the chair out and sits down casually, crossing his arms and settling in for a fight.

“About the contract?” Chris leans back in his seat frowning at Jasper. “You haven’t looked at the contract since you signed it, what could you possibly be concerned about now?”

“Actually, I went through it not that long ago, with a lawyer.” Jasper answers, watching the hint of fear crossing Chris’ face. “So, I want to know what it’s going to take for you to sign our music back over to us?” He asks sternly, leaning forward with a slight smirk on his face, he knew he had the upper hand on this.

“I can’t sign that over to you, without something substantial.” Chris tells him with a smile, picking up his pen and looking confident. Wrongfully thinking he had he upper hand on the situation.

“How about I release the scandal that ruins your family and this image you’ve given yourself.” Jasper replies sternly, Chris stares absolutely dumbfounded at Jasper, hoping to see any hint of him bluffing. “I know what happened with Ryan’s Mum. I think you should consider my request, because frankly my lawyer had plenty of other things he thought I should contest in this contract. If you don’t want problems to come out, do what’s right. In the mean time, I’ll tell the guys not to pass on any song ideas to you until the rights to them are ours. It’s only fair after all, since we’ve seen barely any profit but you’ve bought yourself a lovely big house for the wife you’re cheating on, and you’ve got a fancy car that you can’t put a booster seat in. Think about your family, they need you to be a little smarter about your career if you want to continue having one. Otherwise keep the rights to our stuff and I’ll make sure you lose everything the hard way.”Jasper stands up and pushes his chair in.

“Here I was getting lectured by you for being manipulative, and you’re just as bad as me.” Chris crosses his arms and looks down at his desk, chewing his lip as he thinks about the power move Jasper was playing against him.

“I figure it’s the only language you understand. I’m not proud of stooping to your level, but I am only doing it to help the people I care about.” Jasper defends himself, not allowing Chris to take him down on this.

“What about Ryan? That scandal would hurt him.”

“Ryan knows about it. And if you know what it has already done to him, you’d be wanting to go into hiding for shame of what you’ve done to someone already dealing with a lot. But then again, that's why you slipped an NDA into his contract, isn't it? Do the right thing, for all of us.” Jasper demands then walks out, slamming the door behind him and heading back into the band room to see everyone talking excitedly as they watch Ryan demonstrate some dance move ideas with a girl Jasper hadn’t seen before. “What have I missed?” Jasper asks, trying not to sound too jealous despite the way Ryan was dancing so closely with her.

“He’s improvising this sexy dance sequence for us. I’ve gotta say, he’s really coming out of his shell now isn’t he? I hope this confidence continues because with this attitude he’s going to quickly steal the show and become a real fan favourite.” Simon smiles as he watches the dance moves intrigued.

“What do you think Jasper?” Ryan asks smugly, thanking his dance partner quietly.

“Mmm, not really feeling it.” Jasper answers, shrugging and crossing his arms. Ryan just nods, not believing for a moment that Jasper hadn’t felt at least something while watching the seductive performance. “Remember who we’re performing for. Teenagers don’t need encouragement to be all over each other, or to imagine themselves being all over us. Maybe tone it down a bit.”

“You’re just saying that because you're a prude." Luke tell him with a smirk.

"I'm not a prude." Jasper rolls his eyes. "Whatever dance you come up with for us to do with female dance partners, I’m sure we’ll be making a lot of people jealous.” Jasper bites his lip and looks at the woman beside Ryan.

“We were seriously only improvising so it’d be easy enough to change and make it more appropriate for the target audience. Or the same kind of routine but a step apart so it’s sexy but not so much touching.” The dancer suggests.

“Less touching is a good place to start.” Jasper could tell by the look on Ryan’s face that his reaction was just what he wanted, and usually he wouldn’t be so quick to accept defeat but the thought of Ryan dragging this out wasn’t really appealing to Jasper. He knew he was the one hesitant towards a relationship with Ryan, but not for lack of wanting. All this flaunting from Ryan wasn't fun so much as it was agonizing, his own thoughts were teasing him enough without Ryan adding fuel to the fire.

 

They get in the car to go home and Ryan sits in the back beside Jasper, getting on his phone and looking up ‘Obsolete Fanfiction’. Jasper glances at his phone and smirks as he sees some familiar story titles. Blake was on the other side of him, also peeking at his phone.

“Oh god, seriously?” Blake laughs, leaning forward to look past him at Jasper. “You’ve been influencing him, haven’t you?” He asks with a smirk.

“I hear your fans are all converting over to the Ryan fanbase.” Jasper pokes his tongue out at Blake who gives a sarcastic laugh.

“And you can have them.” He states. “Just please don’t read that next to me, a lot of the stuff that gets written is gay smut and I don’t feel comfortable with it.” Blake tells him, smiling as he watches for a reaction but gets none, Ryan simply gets out of the fanfics and types in something else into his phone.

“Woah!” Jasper and Blake look over at Ryan who was wide eyed and a little red, staring at his phone. “Sorry, just looked up Blasper and there are some drawings…” He stops, shifts uncomfortably in his seat and swipes the screen to get out of it, closing his phone. He sits in silence for a few moments, Blake and Jasper just smiling at him.

“I believe you’ve just discovered what I like to call, the point of no return. Curiosity will take you back there and you will see and read things that can never be unseen. Welcome to the dark side.” Jasper laughs, feeling like he’d unintentionally gotten back at Ryan’s attempt to make him jealous. The rest of the drive had an air of discomfort for everyone but Jasper, who spent the drive with a smug grin on his face as he looked out the window.

Once they got home, the group gets out of the car and all go about their separate ways as soon as they get into their apartment. Blake walks off to his bedroom making a phone call, Luke went for a shower claiming he had somewhere to go but not wanting to elaborate on what it was or when he would be home when Simon teasingly asks if it’s a date. Simon also had plans, heading out into town, leaving Jasper and Ryan alone.

“So.” Jasper shrugs and crosses his arms. “What are your plans for the night?” He asks, hoping it had something to do with him, his own hopes for the night very much included Ryan he just didn't know exactly how much of him.

“Read some fanfiction. Can you recommend any good ones?” Ryan smirks at him. Jasper bites his lip and nods his head.

“Pretty much all the Blasper ones are pretty hot.” He teases with a smirk, watching as Ryan looks slightly disappointed.

“None about us?” Ryan asks.

“I haven’t bothered to read any.” Jasper lies, not very convincingly given the skeptical look Ryan gives him.

“Ok. Well in that case I won’t bother either. I’ve got a lot to do to plan for this show so I’ll go and watch some dance inspiration.” Ryan shrugs and heads down the hallway to his bedroom. Jasper gets himself a drink, considering what he wants to do, then with liquid courage he decides to go to Ryan.

“Hey Jas. I just want to talk to you.” Blake walks out of his room, catching Jasper in the hallway.

“Sure, what’s up?” Jasper turns to him, almost grateful to be interrupted. "If it’s about Beth, I really just want you and her to be happy and I know you like her so I don’t have a problem with you dating her. Go and make yourself happy.” He orders, Blake just smiles at him.

“Thanks. Do you wanna talk about stuff?" Blake offers, gesturing at the drink in Jasper's hand. Jasper looks down at the glass then up at Blake, rolling his eyes.

"Don't tell me you think I have a drinking problem."

"I think since your birthday there’s been a lot of stuff going on, and it’s hard to tell how much of that is affecting you and how much you’re just enjoying being old enough to drink. Do you think it’s a problem? Like are you using alcohol as a cover or are you just enjoying it?” Blake asks, he felt as though he was too out of the loop from whatever was causing Jasper to feel this way. “Are you ok?”

“Oh yeah, no I’m fine. There was some stuff but I’m fine now. I just find it relaxing to have a drink at the end of a day.” Jasper shrugs and smiles reassuringly at Blake.

“What do you need to relax from today?” Blake asks, trying to gauge whether he had a good enough reason or not.

“I confronted Chris, not sure how that’s going to go.” Jasper takes a sip. “He’s the one that thinks I have a drinking problem.” He states.

“Oh well don’t worry about his opinion.” Blake chuckles, taking his phone out and checking the time.

“Am I holding you up?” Jasper asks.

“No, it’s fine. I said I wanted to talk to you first.” Blake puts his phone away and looks back at Jasper.

“So you’re kinda good at relationships and I am not. How do you know when you’re not going to waste someone’s time and you can do the relationship justice?” Jasper asks nervously.

“Is there someone you like?” Blake grins at him excitedly, the idea of his best friend being happy too thrilled him.

“I’m not capable of being a good boyfriend.” Jasper shrugs, finishing his drink quickly and letting out a deep sigh.

“Does this person like you back?” Blake smirks at him. Jasper just nods. “Listen, I had some girlfriends I was really bad at dating when I wasn’t sure what I was actually looking for in a person. I believe people with the right person, know how to love them the right way.” Blake’s comment makes Jasper smile, thinking about what to do about Ryan.

“You better go and visit your date.” Jasper winks at him.

“You better go and tell whoever you’re smiling about, that you are into them or I will take away all the alcohol in the house and hide your ID card so you can’t buy more.” Blake tells him, wagging his finger like a lecturing parent.

“Mm, we’ll see.” Jasper shrugs, finishing his drink a little fast then heading back to put the glass away.

“Well good luck.” Blake follows him down the hall then walks over and gives him a hug before he pulls back with a smirk. “Were you sexting this chick last night when I walked in?” He asks.

“Can we agree to repress that from our memories please?” Jasper shakes his head and covers his face embarrassed. “Don’t ask questions you don’t want answers to. And trust me, that is a question you won’t want the answer for.”

“Seriously though, go and tell them how you feel. Then tonight you can tell me all about it.” Blake pats him on the shoulder. “You deserve happiness too, don’t hold yourself back because you didn’t get it right last time. Go and fall in love.”

Claire Rosalind
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Blake is spilling some hot tea!! 

I'm worried about what Chris is gonna do now that Jasper has confronted him. 

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Jasper has just opened a slimy, disgusting Pandora's box:  I can't see Chris voluntarily giving up anything that makes him money, so what might he do instead? (He doesn't know that the other band members are aware of his perfidy [Jasper says, "I went through (the contract)...with a lawyer," not "we went through the contract"], so he might think that destroying Jasper--by reputation or otherwise--may address this issue.) A nice, messy lawsuit may actually have been better than Jasper's confronting Chris in private:  Better a snake on open ground (where it can be seen) than hiding in the bushes.

 

Edited by travlbug
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