Brother I

Nick is startled awake by the shrill ringtone of Jess's phone. He feels her move under his arm, and grunts in annoyance when she tries to pry his arm off her waist. But he complies after some resistance and lets her go, fully awake now as he watches her reach for her phone on the nightstand.

"Hey, Mom," she says, voice hoarse with sleep.

Nick frowns, wondering why Joan had called at 8:30 in the morning, on a weekend. He hopes everything was okay.

"What?!"

She ks fully awake now and starts to sit up on her bed. Nick places a inquiring hand on her arm as he raises himself on his elbow, looking at her with concern. She is wide-eyed, and she looks at him with surprise and shock.

"Yeah, okay, Mom. I'm on my way," she says, before hanging up and frowns in confusion at her phone.

"Jess, what is it?"

"My brother's in jail," she says slowly, the puzzled expression not leaving her face.

"What?" says Nick incredulously. "Why?"

"I- I don't know," Jess says frowning, and starts to get out of bed. "But he's here in L.A. and I need to bail him out."

Nick nods and jumps out of bed too. "Okay, I'll come with you."

"No!" says Jess quickly. "No, that's fine, Nick. I'll-I'll go by myself."

"But Jess, I could-"

"Nick, no, don't worry about it!" she cuts him off. "I can manage."

With that, she hurries out of the door before Nick could argue. Nick sits in bed, staring after her, wondering if he was reading too much into her weird behaviour. He slowly walks out her bedroom and heads to the kitchen, deciding to make them both breakfast before she left.

He forgets about his dilemma for a while, and after Jess leaves to bail her brother out, Nick finds himself agreeing to be Schmidt's wingman at a bar mitzvah. As the day progresses, Nick's insecurities begin to get the better of him and he wonders if Jess was too embarrassed by him to have him meet her older brother.

...

"Hey, Tiny!" is the first thing Jason Day says when he steps out of custody, a big smile on his face.

Jess runs towards him and envelopes him in a hug, and he drops the heavy bag he's holding to his feet as she hurtles towards him. As he lifts her off the floor, he can't help the small smile that comes onto his face as he hugs her, because he remembers why he chooses to come back to Los Angeles in the first place.

As he sets her down on her feet again, he is met by a sharp jab in the stomach. "Why were you jail!" she asks sternly, hands on both her hips.

"Relax, Tiny," Jason chuckles and throws an arm over shoulder as she walks them to her car. "I got a little carried away on one of the gigs I was covering."

Jess raises her brows questioningly.

"What, it's not everyday I have the chance to cover [ insert name of your favourite band ]," he says. "I just had to try sneaking into his trailer. I have was really hoping to get an interview."

Jess gasps, and narrows her eyes at him. "So, did you?" she whispers.

"No, Tiny, I got arrested," he laughs.

"That's a shame," she says ruefully as she opens the door to her car.

"Um, she doesn't know yet," he admits, rubbing the back of his neck.

Jason catches her by the shoulder before she slides into the driver seat. He holds his hand out, eyebrows raised. "You know the rules."

"Jay! You just got arrested," she says incredulously.

"Rules are rules, Tiny," he shrugs. "I didn't make 'em."

"Yes, you did," she mutters, but drops the car keys in his palm and walks over to the passenger's side of the car.

He laughs at her annoyed face as she sits in the passenger car. He revs the car engine and as he adjusts the rearview mirror, he says in a British accent, "Seatbelt, little one."

"In place," she says, mirroring the accent.

As they pull out, she laughs at him fondly. "I missed you."

"Missed you too, Tiny," he says, smiling.

As they pull out of the parking lot, Jason slips into the British accent again. "Lead the way to your abode, little one."

"Actually, I was thinking," says Jess in the accent, but there's a certain nervousness to it. "Why don't we go to Cece's house?"

"What? Why?" asks Jason, frowning. "I wanna see where you live. And the guys of course. And your boyfriend."

"Well, I thought you could surprise Cece. I'm sure she'd love to see you," says Jess. "Besides, Nick's um, kind of busy today."

"Alright. To Little C's house," he says, and notices when she looks slightly relieved. He doesn't comment on that, but decides to take it up later.

"Okay, then," grins Jess. "And don't call her "little" anymore. I don't think she appreciates it very much."

Jason laughs. "She never did."

"So, how's Liv?" asks Jess, and gives him a knowing smile.

"She's doing great!" he shrugs. "In New York on an assignment."

"Did you tell her about being arrested?" she asks slyly.

He looks at her sheepishly, and shakes his head once. "She worries too much."

"And that's why I love her," she laughs, and after that, they settle into a comfortable silence.

As they drive towards Cece's house, Jason throws a sideward glance at Jess. She's humming that theme song of hers, and he still remembers writing the chords down for that. It amuses him to no end that Jess still sings it. She is and bobbing up and down in her seat, and he loves that nothing about her has changed.

"I swear the only reason I didn't get on the next plane from Milan and talk some sense into this idiot about living with three strange men was because one of them punched Blondie in the face," says Jason pointedly as he sips on cold beer. "They did my job for me."

"Well, Schmidt actually slapped Spencer," giggles Jess, holding her glass out for Cece to refill her wine.

"Wait, Schmidt is the guy that Little C….?"

"Yep," says Cece, taking a quick sip of her wine. "And I'm not "little"!"

Laughing, Jason stands up, excusing himself to use the washroom. Cece looks at Jess questioningly, eyebrows raised.

"What?"

"Why did you bring him here?" asks Cece.

"I thought you'd be happy to see him!" says Jess, surprised.

"I am, I really am," nods Cece. "But knowing you, you would've taken him home and immediately baked him that coconut cake he loves so much and then brought him over here."

Jess grunts, but doesn't say anything.

"Babe, what's going on?" she asks.

"He's going to scare Nick away," she mutters at last.

"What?"

"Look, Cece," says Jess, turning to face her. "Nick and I love each other, but we haven't really talked about a few things yet. Knowing Jay, he's going to… ask Nick questions that make him uncomfortable and…. I don't want him to freak out."

"You make him sound like your dad," says Cece with amusement.

"Don't let him hear you say that," snorts Jess.

Cece looks at her thoughtfully for a few seconds and asks, "And how do you feel about the whole thing?"

"How do I feel about what?" says Jess, nervously playing with her hands.

"About not having talked about a few things with Nick?"

"It's okay," she says quickly, and starts rambling. "I mean, we love each other. I love him. And he loves me. The talking can wait because we love each other. Does anything else really matter? No it doesn't. It doesn't."

Cece raises her brows. "Jess," she says knowingly. "I know you. You need to-"

She falls quiet when they hear Jason enter the living room again.

"So, Jay, how long are you staying here for?" says Jess quickly, and Jason looks at both of their faces and knows that this was a desperate change of topic. Cece is smiling too widely and Jess is not meeting his eyes.

He narrows his eyes as he falls back onto the couch. "A couple of days," he says, keeping his eyes on Jess. "Liv will be landing in L.A. the tomorrow. I have… plans."

"What plans?" asks Jess suspiciously, and when Jason smirks mischievously, she scrunches her nose. "Never mind, I don't want to know."

Jason merely laughs. "So I was wondering if I could crash at your place, Tiny. Till Liv is here and-"

"You can stay here, Jay," chimes in Cece, and Jess throws her a relieved smile. "The loft has too many people already."

Jess nods and says, "Yeah, she's right, Jay. The guys are all very noisy too and messy-"

"I guess that makes sense," says Jason slowly.

"Great!" says Cece, and grins. "Your making the dinner for today then."

Jason groans and refuses at first, and finally relents. The three of the of them take time to catch up will almost evening, when Jess finally gets up to go home. She kisses Jason's cheek and hugs Cece, thanking her softly at the door before leaving.

When Jess returns to the loft, she can tell something's off with Nick. He's sitting tensely on her bed, and she knows there's something on his mind. She says nothing and goes to change out of her clothes first. Once she's in her pyjamas, she walks out and sits next to him.

"Hey," she says, leaning into him lightly.

"Hey," he mutters. "How'd it go with your brother?"

"Good," she says, a small smile on her face. "He's crashing at Cece's for the night."

"At Cece's?" he frowns. "Why not bring him here?"

Jess looks at him, surprised, unsure what this was about. "Because it's already so crowded?"

Nick sighs in exasperation and turns to look at her fully, deciding to get straight to the point. "Jess, are you embarrassed by me?"

Jess is clearly taken aback. "What? Why would you think that!"

"Why won't you let me meet your brother?"

Jess purses her lips. She wasn't sure she could talk about that to Nick without bringing up "The Talk", so she simply stares at him dumbfoundedly. She wants to tell him, she really does, because she knows of his insecurities. But her throat is dry and she doesn't know what to say. Nick stares back at her, waiting with a pleading look in his eyes, but gets no response from her. She looks like a deer caught in headlights, and he doesn't want to push her anymore. He looks away after a few minutes and stands up to leave.

"Where're you going?"

"To my room," he mutters.

She wants to protest, but she doesn't. She needed some time to mull over things. As she watches him start to leave, she says, "I love you."

"I love you, too," he says softly, and leaves the bedroom, closing the door shut behind him.


A/N: Let me know your thoughts on Jason. I'm curious.

Need you all to know that with this, I'm laying the foundation to "something bigger" that you'll soon find out. So I hope you have the patience to stick with me. :)

The parts you don't see, just assume it's the same way as it was on the show. :')

Leave some juicy reviews please.