Chapter 30 - Reaching out

Masquerades 101 by Emily

Posted on 15 Views / 1220 Hits Word Count: 4516 (20 minutes)

Synopsis: A certain sister reaches out to Nic and Vic.


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I had just finished up at the gym where I had a very hard work out. I was upset nobody was doing anything about Brandon. The cops didn’t care anymore. I couldn’t go back to TK for more questions. Brandon himself was MIA. I felt powerless. So I did the only thing I could control - that punching bag. So I punched and kicked that heavy bag as hard as I could for at least 20 minutes straight.

I got home, locked the door behind me and took a nice long shower to get this sweat off. I let the scalding water cascade off my shoulders. It felt good. After the shower, I got dressed into a t-shirt and shorts and sat on the couch with my homework.

After an hour of homework, I was getting restless again. I was starting to miss my friends. It’s a Tuesday night, what would they be doing right now? I want this to all be over with. The body swap. This genie business. Brandon. I want to wake up back in my old body and old room as if this semester hasn’t happened. 

The phone interrupted me. It was a text from Madison. “How are you doing? Want me to come over?”

I looked at the clock. It was already past 6. I wanted to say yes. I’m lonely, and I could certainly use the company, but I didn’t want Madison walking unescorted across campus in the dark.

“It’s too late.” I text back. “See you tomorrow?”

“Absolutely. Let’s do dinner.”

At least I have dinner plans tomorrow.

The phone buzzed. Please be the cops. It was Hanna.

“Hello?” I answered.

“Hi Nicole,” she said.

“Hey Hanna, what’s up?”

“I was wondering if we could have some sister girl talk?” she asked.

“Oh, of course,” I replied. “What’s on your mind?”

“When is the right time to have sex?” she blurted out.

I nearly choked when I heard that. “Umm. Isn’t this a better topic for your parents or Vicky?”

“I can’t talk to my parents about this, and Vicky refuses to talk about this type of stuff. She still sees herself as my big brother.”

“Well, I’m not sure I’m the best person to talk to about this.” I replied.

“Why not?”

“Well.” I said. “I um... first started having sex when I was younger than you. But I hated it.”


“There was a boy.” I said. “I guess you can say I dated him. But I felt nothing for him, and after a few dates, I felt enormous pressure to have sex with him. So I did. In the back of his brother’s car. And I neither had a good time, nor enjoyed it. We were both 16. What did we know?”

“But you’ve had sex since, right?”

“Well, I was rather confused for a while. I hooked up with my best friend. That felt good actually, but I was just fooling around with her and I never went all the way with her because my homophobic parents caught us kissing and holding hands.”

“Oh wow.” she said. “I didn’t know you were into girls.”

“Yeah - I didn’t know either. But then there was Tyler.”

“Tyler is your boyfriend who is also Vicky’s boyfriend right?” she asked.

“You know about that?”

“Yeah.” she replied. “You two talked about it briefly when I was up there shopping with you.”

“Oh.” I said. I’m not sure what I said and when, but it's likely Tyler was brought up in passing. I was about to talk about my emotional connection with Tyler when she interrupted.

“What’s going on with that anyway?” she said.

“Um.” I said. “It’s complicated.”

“Are you sure you two actually swapped? You sound like my brother - avoiding an uncomfortable topic.”

Wow. Hanna can get sassy. I sighed. “I’m sorry.” I responded. “OK. So, Tyler was my boyfriend. When your brother and I swapped bodies, Vicky continued to date him, pretending to be me.”

“Why would she do that?”

“I umm… asked her to.” I replied. “Because at that point we were keeping this body swap craziness to ourselves. I didn't want this to complicate my relationship with him.”

“And she’s still dating him after you all told him the truth?” Hanna asked. 

I laughed out loud and cut myself off. “Tyler still doesn’t know. Vicky started falling for.. them. And now she’s in so deep, she can’t get out without hurting herself or Tyler.” For a moment I started to feel sorry for Vicky. I certainly put her in an impossible situation.

“Do you want me to kick my brother’s ass for you?” Hanna asked.

“No.” I replied. “That’s not necessary.”

“Have you had sex as a boy yet?” she asked

“I um… That’s kinda private.”

“Come on,” she pouted. “We’re sisters.”

“OK, I have.” I replied.

“How was it?”

“It was weird.” I replied. “I have this foreign appendage that's giving me dysphoria. And I made the mistake of having sex with my drunk best friend. I mean I was drunk too. It was just a mistake all around.”

“I hear ya.” she said.

“But anyway.” I said trying to change the topic, “What I’m trying to say is only have sex when you’re ready.”

“Oh I know that.” she said nonchalantly. “I’ve already had sex.”

“Wait, what.” I said. “But you called to-”

“To figure out why my sisters were fighting.”

I shook my head. I should’ve known. “Sneaky.” I said. “How did you know?”

“I’ve actually managed to talk to Vicky over the phone for the past 2 weeks. When I bring you up, she gets very silent.”

“Yeah” I responded. “It’s good you both are talking to each other. Me and Vicky on the other hand are not.”

“Maybe you should.”

“I can’t, Hanna. Vicky has taken everything from me. She’s living her best life, and I’m sitting here alone.”

“Then maybe I should go beat her up.”

“Yeah, maybe.”

“Well, hang in there, Nicole.” she said. “As always, I enjoy talking to you, sis. Maybe we can do something just the two of us when you come over for Thanksgiving.”

“Yeah. Thank you. That sounds nice.” Hopefully by Thanksgiving all of this Brandon stuff is over. And maybe, just maybe, by Thanksgiving I’m back to my old body… but then, I wouldn’t be hanging out with the only sister I’ve ever known.

“Good night,” she said.

“Good night,” I replied.

* * *


I woke up in Tyler’s bed. I can smell bacon. I rolled over to check the time. It’s early. I rolled out of bed and shuffled through my overnight bag to put on a pair of leggings and a t-shirt. I walked out of Tyler’s room and to the kitchen.

I didn’t expect to find Taylor standing there in a beautiful flowing yellow sundress flipping bacon. Josh was sitting there too there patiently waiting for breakfast. I guess Josh knows about Taylor too.

Taylor looked at me and smiled. “Good Morning.”

I yawned and sat down beside Josh. “When did you meet Taylor?”

“This morning,” he said. “But her reputation preceded her.”

“I told Josh about Taylor sometime last year” Taylor chimed in while flipping bacon.

“There was a night of drinks,” Josh said. “Naturally I was trying to hit that.”

“And I spilled that I’m non-binary.” Taylor said.

“And you kept insisting you weren’t gay.” Josh chuckled.

“I’m not,” Taylor said.

“Honey, you’re a girl and you have a girlfriend. You’re gay.”

“Well… I…” Taylor was tongue tied. “I’m not always a girl.”

Josh simply chucked.

I love their banter. “How did you two meet anyway?” I asked.

“Freshman year,” Taylor said. “Josh was my neighbor in my dorm.”

“No, It was my freshman year,” Josh corrected. “I’m a year behind you, remember.”

“Oh yeah.” Taylor replied looking a little confused. The confused look went away as she started moving bacon off the skillet and to a plate.

“I was walking around trying to drum up support for being Dorm Mayor.” Josh continued. “Tyler’s reputation as a website builder and cosplayer and all-round cool person preceded them.”

Taylor chuckled and looked at me. “Don’t you remember those days back when we first started dating that Josh would pull me away for some crazy dorm event or project?” 

I laughed at the memory I don't have. “He still does that.” I laughed.

“Yeah, you were jealous,” Taylor said laughing.

I faked a laugh at that one. I could see Nicole, thinking Tyler was gay, and worrying about their new gay best friend. 

Tyler stood at the skillet for a moment silent. “It’s odd, I feel like I remember you knocking on my door freshman year half naked.”

“Yeah. That was totally your dream,” Josh laughed. “Or mine. Yum.”

“Yeah,” she said, handing a plate of bacon and eggs to Josh “I do have weird dreams every now and again.”

“Thank you very much, Miss Taylor.” Josh said.

Taylor then gave me my own plate. “For my beautiful girlfriend,” she said.

“Why thank you, Taylor,” I said with a smile.

Taylor served herself and sat beside me. 

I started eating.

Taylor took a bit of some bacon and turned to me. “I’m planning something romantic on Friday. Just me and you, nobody else. Wear something fancy.”

“Oh really?” I said. “You know I’m a t-shirt and jeans or leggings kinda girl, right?”

“Yeah” she said. “But I want to go out somewhere nice this time.”

“Who’s asking? You or Tyler?”

“We’re the same person.” she said. A moment later she said, “Tyler.”

“You’re not going to try that French restaurant again are you?” Josh chimed in.

“No.” Taylor said, shaking her head. “I have something else in mind.”

“OK” I said. “I’ll see what I have in my closet then.”

* * *


I walked into my new internship, determined to prove that I belonged here. I found my boss, Joyce and asked her for things to do. Thankfully Joyce was my boss, not Vicky’s dad. That would’ve been awkward.

Joyce came back with a file box. “So this is a file of all previous customers.” she explained to me. “All of your fellow interns are cold calling them to see if we could offer any new services. Jennifer has the script you can use when they answer.”

“Great” I said, taking the file box.

Alright, let’s do this, I told myself. I made a copy of the script from Jennifer and pulled out the first file. I called them, ran through the script, and they said no thanks.

Next one. Similar results.

Next one. No answer.

Jennifer turned to me. “We have a spreadsheet of these files that are sorted by POC name, company and the last time we contacted them. We find that it’s easier to call companies we’ve talked to fairly recently.”

“Thanks” I said. I pulled up that spreadsheet and looked at it. I sorted it a few ways, but I noticed a name for a company’s point of contact. “Shirley Hancock.” Nah.. it can’t be. Can it?

I dialed a few more numbers. No thanks. No answer. We’ve gone with someone else.

I eyed the Shirley Hancock number again. I was nervously tapping my foot. OK, let’s do it.

I dialed the number. And a female voice answered. She sounded like my mother. Oh my god it’s her.

“Hi,” I said nervously. I started reading from the script. “This is.. Um. Victor Machado from Emilitech, I was calling to follow up on some work we did for you in the past. Is this Ms. Hancock?”

“Oh, hi.” she said. “I changed my name recently. It’s Ms. Marlon.”

That’s mom’s maiden name. That means, Aunt Shirley changed her last name back to it. “Thank you for that, I’ll update our records” I said, making a note in front of me..

“What can I do for you today?” she asked.

I wanted to say hi. I wanted to tell her that it’s her niece Nicole. How in the world can I do that? I started paraphrasing the script, “Since you’re a former customer I wanted to see if you were interested in another of our future services.”

“You all did a wonderful job with our accounting program.” she said. “So, I’m willing to sit through a sales pitch.” 

She was? I was excited. 

“But not today.” she said.

Then I was sad.

“Maybe tomorrow?” she offered.

I was excited again. “Tomorrow is fine,” I said. Jennifer waved me over to her screen where she showed me conference room availability. “How about 1 PM?” I suggested.

“That works for me, Mr. Machado.”

“Thank you. Um.. Ms. Marlon” I said.

We both hung up.

“Wow.” Jennifer said. “Good job on only your first hour of calls.”

Oh my god. I sat there, thinking. I’m going to see Aunt Shirley tomorrow. Now what? I lured her here for a business proposal, I’m going to need to follow through with. I might need to spend the rest of the day figuring out what I’m going to do tomorrow.

* * *


Later in the day after my classes and internship I finally returned home, and crashed on my bed. I looked at my phone, which I usually keep on silent during the day. I had some missed calls from Hanna, but nothing from anyone else. I stared at the ceiling for a moment, then remembered Taylor asking about going out Friday, so I went to my closet to look at what I had. I had stuff good enough for my internship. I had some cute outfits for class. I had the outfits I wore to Tyler’s parents. I had some hoochie-mama clubbing dresses, but nothing worthy of a romantic night out.

I decided to call my sister back. 

“Hey Vicky” she answered. I’m not sure I’ll ever get used to my own sister calling me Vicky.

“What’s up?” I asked. “I saw you called.”

“I wanted a favor.” she asked.


“Can you take me shopping?” she said.

“Take you shopping?” I asked. “I’m away at college and you have your own car now. Besides, I haven’t taken you shopping in years.”

“Yeah” she said. “And back then you were a guy awkwardly waiting outside Victoria’s Secret impatiently waiting for me to hurry up.”

I chuckled. “Yup.”

“Well I was kinda hoping we could chip in together for a Christmas present for Mom and Dad.”

“Christmas?” I said, “It’s too soon to think about Christmas.”

“It’s less than 2 months away.” she said.

“OK, when do you want to go?” I asked.

“Today.” she replied.

“Today?” I said, “It’s almost dinner time. I’m getting hungry.”

“So, we’ll grab a bite to eat like old times.” she said.

I sighed. I was worried about leaving my apartment with Brandon lurking out there. But on the other hand, I know that the longer I stay as Vicky, the less interactions I’ll have with Hanna. Over time my real family will fade out of my life. 

“Well, I do need a new dress.” I admitted.

I heard Hanna squeal with joy on the other end of the phone. “Yes! Let’s do it!”

My stomach growled. What am I getting myself into?

* * *

An hour later I found myself at the town center with my sister. I was still hungry, but she insisted we go shopping first. We found something nice for Mom and Dad. It’s going to be weird that in reality it’s going to be from Hanna and Nicole - not me. But I guess it’s the thought that counts right?

Next I suggested one of the dress stores we’ve been to before. I got no resistance from Hanna who was overjoyed I suggested it. I figured, I’m going to be rewarded with some good food after this, so I’m pushing through it.

“So what do you need a dress for?” Hanna inquired.

“My… um... boyfriend is taking me out somewhere romantic tomorrow” I replied as I skimmed the clothing racks.

“Nice,” she said. “I haven’t heard too much about him. So tell me about your boyfriend.” Hanna asked.

“Well, Tyler is a they,” I said. “And.. I dunno. I guess I’ve been dating them since the swap. They're into all of the same things I’m into.” I paused for a moment. I looked at Hanna and she was listening to me intently. I thought of Tyler. “I… I love them, Nana. I know it’s crazy.”

“Aww” she said with a smile.

“When Lindsey broke up with me,” I continued. “I swore off falling in love. But here I am. When I started being Nicole’s stand-in, I never expected I’d fall for them.”

“And Nicole?” she said with concern.

“She hates me.” I said, putting my head down. “I stole her boyfriend. I don't know what to do.”

“You need to talk to her.” Hanna responded, “Apologize to her.”

“I tried.”

“Try harder. My sisters are fighting.”

Nana always had this way of making this face and getting what she wants. It always works on our parents. Sometimes it works on me. “I’ll try harder,” I said. I pulled a dress off the rack. It was a sparkly plum dress. “I’m going to try this on.” I said.

I came out of the dressing room wearing the dress so Hanna could see it. It hung off my shoulders and came down to just above my ankles.

“Oh Vicky, that dress is gorgeous on you.” Hanna said.

“You think so?” I asked. “Is it too formal?” I looked down at the price tag and groaned. Who knew women’s clothes could be so expensive.

“Not at all.” she said. “You said Tyler was taking you somewhere romantic. This is perfect.”

I looked at my sister who was all smiles. “Thank you, Nana. Thank you for being here for me.”

“Anytime,” she said.

“I’m afraid to lose you.” I added. “I miss Mom and Dad. I feel like the longer this swap stays this way, I’m going to lose my family. Sure I’m gaining a boyfriend, and new friends, but I’m losing you.”

“You’ll never lose me, Vicky” she said, hugging me. “You’re still my brother - or sister. Whichever you want to be.”

I hugged her back. This has to be the closest I’ve really been with Hanna. We were always close, and I was always the big brother she looked up to and she the little sister I tried to protect, but this feels different… to be able to really share our personal thoughts.

“Hold on.” Hanna said, letting go of the hug and pulling her buzzing phone out of her purse. “Hi Mom, I’m still out shopping.” “Yeah I know it’s a school night.” “You’re coming out this way?” “Sure I can meet up.”

I looked at the mirror and posed for it while Hanna was on the phone. This does look good. Hopefully this is what Tyler had in mind.

“Hey mom, can I bring a friend?” I heard Hanna say.

I looked at her. She had a devilish grin on her face. 

“In twenty minutes, great, we’ll see you there.”

“I can’t go to dinner with Mom and Dad like this,” I said.

“Yes, that dress is rather formal.” she said. “Change back into your normal clothes, it’ll be fine”

“That’s not what I meant,” I said. “I’m Vicky not Victor.”

“You’re my friend, they don't need to know,” she said.

I smiled. This was a bad idea.

“We have twenty minutes.” she added. “Let’s go into Victoria’s Secret first.”

* * *

After some more quick shopping, where I just had to get some cute underwear for my date, Hanna and I walked into the restaurant. And right there sitting in a booth were my parents. I hadn’t seen them in almost a year. It’s been just over 10 months since the fight last Christmas.

“This is my friend Nicole,” Hanna said as we approached. “She is actually one of Victor’s friends.”

“Oh really?” Mom said. “I’m so glad Victor’s made some friends this year. How is he doing?”

“He’s doing… great,” I replied. I wonder how much of the truth I can actually tell them.

“I get the feeling he’s a little stressed out.” Dad said. “He just started working for me this week and he seems a little stressed.”

“It’s been a rough semester,” I replied.

“How’d you two meet?” Mom asked Hanna.

“Last time I visited Victor,” Hanna said, “we all went shopping together, and me and Nicole just hit it off. She’s like a big sister to me.” She smiled and winked at me.

The waiter came and took our orders. Mom and Dad casually talked about their day with Hanna. I just listened and took in the monotony of going out to dinner with my family. Something I may have taken for granted. Eventually our dinners came and we started eating. I was starving as lunch seemed like so long ago.

“Nicole,” Dad said. “What are you in school for?”

“Marketing” I said, testing the limits of the truth. “But I’m taking a few art classes.”

“Marketing?” Dad said with an exciting tone. “That was my major in college, too.”

I internally chuckled. Deep down I knew the real Nicole and my dad would get along.

“Is that how you met Victor?” Mom asked. “In those art classes?”

“Yeah, kinda” I replied. I just had an idea about one truthful thing I can share. “Victor and I worked on a project together for my own internship.” I pulled out my phone and pulled up the logos I created. “We worked on this together. I did the… ideas, and Victor did the art.” I passed my phone to my parents.

“Wow.” Mom said. “Those are nice.”

Dad smiled and nodded. “Victor made this? These are rather Impressive.” 

“My boss was impressed.” I said, eager to show my Dad I finally could be successful. “I think they’re going to offer me a fulltime job after I graduate.”

“Well, Congratulations” Dad said. “Sounds like you two work well together.”

I thought about that for a moment, and how we’re currently fighting, but I wanted this moment to be about me and my parents, not me and Nicole. I want to properly apologize to Dad. Granted, I did write him that letter telling him I was wrong and wanted to intern at his company, but I wanted to say something in person. But how do I say it in this body? “Victor um..” I started. “Never considered that his art could also have business applications as well.”

“I considered it,” Dad said. “But I did a poor job at voicing this. I felt that if he took a few business classes, he could find a way to focus his passion into something like this” He handed me my phone back.

He’s right, he did a poor job at voicing that. Or maybe I did a poor job at listening. “I’m sorry Victor has been a disappointment.” 

The moment I said that, I heard Mom and Dad put down their silverware. Hanna gave me a concerned look.

“Where did you get that idea?” Mom asked. “Did Victor tell you that?”

“Is that what he thinks?” Dad said. “Nicole, I think you have the wrong impression of us. I am very proud of our son. I always have been. We’ve had our arguments. He’s as stubborn as his father, which is why we butt heads. But he’s my son, and I love him.”

On one hand, I loved hearing this, on the other hand, I clearly made them upset. “I.. heard about your fight and...”

“And I said regretful things.” Dad interrupted me. “As a parent there’s a fine line where you let your kids make their own decisions and let them succeed and fail, and where you steer them to a safer path. I was pushing Victor to take the safe route instead of following his passion. I should have nurtured his passion and point him to the right places to follow it. But it looks like you may have gotten through to him better than I have.”

I nodded. “I think he said regretful things too. I do know he misses you both. He talked about you.”

Mom smiled. “And we miss him too. Hopefully he comes home for the holidays.”

Sadly I won’t be home for the holidays, but I imagine Nicole will be there instead.

After a few moments of silence, Hanna changed the subject to talking about a few of her cheerleading friends. Eventually dinner was done, and the tab came. I reached into my purse to pull out my credit card, but realized that I still am using Victor’s credit cards. I couldn’t possibly use that here with my parents present. So I pulled out cash instead. 

Dad waved me off, “Don’t worry about it, Nicole.” He took the bill from me, slid his own card into it and handed it back to the waiter. 

“Thank you,” I said.

“Nicole,” Mom said. “We’ve been talking all about us. How are you doing?”

I smiled. I can finally tell them about me without hiding behind this Nicole mask. “I’m doing very well.” I said. “Great in fact. I have some amazing friends. I… I’m seeing someone. I’m in love. I’m scared of where the future takes me.”

Mom and Dad smiled at each other and held hands, likely recalling the time when they first started dating.

“Enjoy the ride,” Dad said and looked at Mom. “When you find the right person it’s amazing.”

When the bill came back, Dad signed it and we all stood up from the table. 

Mom gave me a hug. “It was nice meeting you Nicole.”

I hugged her back. I miss you Mom. “Same here, Mrs. Machado.”

“Nicole, good luck in your classes.” Dad said. “Tell Victor we love him. I’ll tell him when I see him tomorrow, but he never believes me.”

“Thank you,” I said. “I’ll tell him.”

We then parted ways. Hanna and I walked together away from our parents.

“Vicky, are you OK?” she asked. “That got a little intense there. I thought you were going to blow your cover”

“I’m great.” I said, wiping a tear from my eye. “I’m going to miss them.”

* * *


I wanted to talk to her. I need to talk to her. I’m nervous about what she’s going to say. I stood outside Nicole’s apartment building. I pulled out my phone and texted the number. “I’m outside. Can I come in?”

She replied. “Be right down.”

I stood at the door pacing, watching other residents come in and out. I could just walk in, but Nicole gave me instructions to not do that since they beefed up security after the Brandon thing.

She opened the door, and smiled at me.

“Hi Lexi,” I said. “I was wondering if we could chat?”

“Sure Tyler” she said. “Come on in.”



Hi, I'm Emily and I'm writing Gender Transformation Fiction! This site is a place for me to keep all of my stories in one place. I'm also a software developer in the daytime, so this site will also be a proving ground of cool new features that pop into my head. Feel free to message me on Twitter or at my Discord Server! You can also find me on and

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So we have 2 weird lamps; one that Victor broke and the other Tyler/Taylor broke. We have confusing memories about when Josh and T met. A wish they made as well just before the switch. And, if memory serves, an exacto knife that rolled under Vic's furniture. I'm excited to see how all this comes together!

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Ahh yes. Chekhov's exacto knife. It's been a while since anyone's thought about that.

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I haven't forgotten. Maybe it's a red herring brand of exacto knife though

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Oh, the cliffhanger! Can't wait for next week...

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I genuinely get so hyped on a Monday when there’s a new chapter. I really enjoy the dynamic with Vicky/Hanna too. I hope we get to see some more of their relationship cause it’s really cute. Also, I don’t really write a whole lot of fiction, but I’ve been wanting to do one of these types of stories for a while. Just wanna say, your stories have honestly pushed me into working on it little by little.

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Thank you for reading! That's awesome this is encouraging you to write some fiction. Good luck, I'll keep a look out!

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OK, I just re-read this chapter in preparation for the new one. So much going on in the details. Now Josh and Tyler are having conflicting memories. It seems like nothing can really be taken off the table of possibilities at this point. It seems like all of the main characters have been affected in some way by magic. I think it is going to turn out that the lives of everyone were much different before they showed up at this school. I think it's great that Nicole is going to get a chance to meet her aunt again, by sheer coincidence of a cold sales call. But what has really stopped her from having a relationship with her aunt since moving away to college? Nicole is an adult and capable of deciding who to have contact with in her life. It was also nice that Victor was able to see his parents again, even if they didn't know it was him. Hanna sure is sneaky and manipulative! So now Tyler has invited Lexi ovr to talk. I think Tyler is going to pop the question to 'Nicole' and wants to feel out the best approach and timing with Lexi. So the big question is not "Will you?" but will Nicky finally 'fess up? Can't wait for the next chapter - oh, yeah, it's here! Gotta run. Cheers!

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