Authors: Alexis Noelle
Tags: #Literature & Fiction, #Genre Fiction, #Coming of Age, #Romance, #Contemporary
“Have you lost your fucking mind?!”
I knew that Mike wasn’t going to like me deciding to pursue this thing with Becca, especially the part about me bringing her on tour with me, but I didn’t think one person’s eyes could bug out so much. “Yes, I’m serious Mike. Why don’t you take a breath before you hurt something?” I laugh but then immediately regret it.
“Take a breath?! My biggest client just called me and told me that he fell for some random girl and has decided to parade her all over the US with him on his biggest tour ever. It’s okay, though, because he has a good feeling about her.”
I rub my hands up and down my face. I hate that I feel like I need to justify myself to him. “Listen, you can be pissed all you want, but it’s not gonna change anything. This is
damn life, and if I want her in it then that’s what I want. I’m sick of letting you and everyone else that works for me tell me how to live my life.”
“I’m just trying to protect you, Lucas.”
No, he’s just trying to protect his money.
I’m not delusional; I know that no one who works for me actually gives a shit what I want. That’s why, in the end, their opinion doesn’t mean shit to me.
“I’ll be fine Mike; I’ll see you tomorrow when we leave.” I slam the computer shut, pull out my phone and call someone that I know won’t have any ulterior motives.
“Hey, Lucas! How was the week off?”
“Hey, Dad, are you busy? I kinda need some advice.” My dad is one of the few people that I trust completely. People tend to screw you over in my line of work, so I learned early on not to confide in many of them.
“No, I’m not busy. Your mother is cooking dinner and I’m banned from the kitchen as usual. What’s going on?”
“So, I don’t know if I told you but I stayed in Philadelphia for my vacation.” I take a deep breath and hope he isn’t going to think I’m as nuts as everyone else does. “I met this girl, and she’s unlike anyone I’ve ever known before. We have this chemistry that I can’t even explain and I wanted to get to know her better. When it was time for me to leave for the tour again today, I didn’t want to, at least not alone. I asked her to come with me so that we can give this a chance and see where it goes.”
“Before I tell you what I think, let me ask you one question, Lucas. This chemistry you say you have, is it just about the sex?”
Having your dad ask you about your sex life would probably freak most people out, but we talk about stuff like this all the time. “That’s just it, Dad, we haven’t
“Okay, well then, let me tell you that I knew from the first day that I saw your mother that she was the one. She couldn’t stand me at first but I knew that what I felt was different. If you really feel a connection with this girl, Lucas, then go for it and screw anyone who has a problem with it.”
The door to the room opens and Becca walks in smiling. My dad’s right; I can’t listen to anyone else, this is
life. “Thanks for the advice,
I needed it.”
“No problem, Lucas. I expect to meet this girl when you come see us in a couple of weeks.”
“Definitely.” I hang up the phone and walk over to Becca, pulling her close to me and pressing myself against her. I lean down and kiss her, knowing that what my dad said to me was right; I may not know if she’s ‘the one’ yet, but there is definitely something here.
She pulls back to look at me. “Is everything okay?”
“It is now. You get all of your stuff?” I still have her pressed against the wall but I’m not ready to move yet.
She lifts her hands around my neck and laces her fingers through my hair. “Yeah, I think so.”
“Good, we need to leave for the airport in a half hour. Is that okay?” I can still see the apprehension in her eyes; she’s scared to take this leap with me. I’m sure now she’s thinking I’m definitely expecting something to happen with us. While it’s something that I can’t fucking wait for, I’m going to have to wait and not pressure her into anything.
“Yeah, I’m actually starting to get excited.”
“That makes two of us.” I lean down to give her a kiss before walking back into the bedroom to finish packing my stuff.
During the ride to the airport I can tell Becca is still nervous; she’s barely talking and keeps staring down at her hands clenched in her lap. The driver pulls up to the terminal and I put my hand on her leg. “Hey, are you okay?”
“Yeah, I just…I’ve never been on a plane before, and I guess I’m just nervous for everything.”
I put my hand on her cheek and give her a kiss. “Everything will be fine, I promise. It’ll be just like it was this last week, except I’ll be doing shows every couple of nights. Come on.” I hold my hand out to her and lead her through the airport. When we’re finally settled on the plane and about to take off I can see her starting to get nervous again. Once the plane begins to move and speed up for takeoff, I kiss her. She opens her mouth to me and I slip my tongue in, letting the taste of her consume me. When I feel the plane level out I pull back.
Becca looks out the window and then back at me. “We’re already in the air?’
I laugh and nod my head. “I can’t wait to distract you when we land.”
When we land in California it’s around six-thirty and I’m starving. I was too nervous to eat before we took off, but my stomach is making itself known now. When Luke asked me just before we landed if I wanted to go eat, it was almost like he was reading my mind, or maybe he just heard my stomach. We’re just about to stand up to get off the plane when he grabs my hand.
“Hey, there might be photographers when we get off; a lot of them camp out at the airports because there are always celebrities coming and going. I brought this for you.” He hands me the same hat that he had given me the first night we spent together. “Just hold onto my hand and don’t look at or talk to them. Okay?”
I nod my head, trying to wrap my mind around what I’ve gotten myself into. Once we move past security I see a group of men standing around with expensive looking cameras around their necks. Luke has my hand and is guiding me toward the door, but sure enough they spot him. I knew they would, though; his hat isn’t much of a disguise. Within seconds we’re surrounded and Luke is pushing his way through the men, dragging me along with him.
They’re all shouting questions at us, some of them enough to make me blush.
“Who’s your new girl Lucas?”
“Is she better than Samantha?”
“Look up and show us your face, honey, we’ll find out who you are either way!”
I squeeze Luke’s hand, terrified that I’ll lose track of him in the midst of all the craziness if I let go. As soon as we step outside there’s a big black SUV waiting by the curb. I reach for my bag, but Luke stops me.
“Leave it, babe, the driver will get it.” He pulls me over to the door of the car and climbs in behind me. Once the door is closed I look out from under the cover of my hat to the men that had followed us through the airport. My heart is racing and my hands are shaking. When I look back over at Luke he looks worried. “Are you okay? Do you regret coming here?”
He’s worried that this is all going to scare me off. “No, I don’t regret it. I just think that this is something I’m going to need to get used to.” I scoot over next to him and snuggle up against his side. He puts his arm around me, and even with all the flashing lights from the cameras and the fact that I can still hear the men yelling from outside the car, I feel safe.
As the car moves away I relax a little more. Luke leans over and buckles my seatbelt for me but keeps me close to him. “So, I want to take you out for dinner since it’s your first night in town, but if you’re not up to it we can always order something.”
“No, we can go out. Take me to your favorite places like I did all week with you.”
“Okay, it’s about an hour drive into Malibu, so we still have some time. I’m going to call ahead and make a reservation, though.”
The next thing I know, I’m opening my eyes to a beautiful yellow, orange and pink sky. Did I fall asleep? I’m still lying against Luke, but something’s changed; he seems tense. I’m just about to pick my head up to ask him what’s wrong when I hear him start talking.
“Listen, I hear you but it’s not your decision…No, I was never into her and I told you that from the beginning…Well, that’s too damn bad if she isn’t going to be happy.
going to be happy and that’s what should matter to you. I’ll see you tomorrow, don’t call me back. Oh, and you need to make sure everyone is on their best behavior tomorrow or it’s going to be a long tour.”
He wraps his other arm back around me and I’m guessing that means that he’s ended the call. Who could he have been talking to and what could they have been talking about? I have a feeling that it had a little something to do with Luke deciding to take me with him, but why would that be a problem?
Luke’s arms tighten around me and I feel his head dip down next to my ear. “Becca, wake up.” I look up at him, deciding not to let him know I had heard the phone conversation; he’ll tell me if he wants me to know. “We’re here, babe.” I smile up at him; usually I think it’s so cliché when guys use the terms ‘babe’ and ‘baby’, but when they’re coming from him I can’t get enough of them.
I look out the window and see that we are pulled up in front of a place called Moonshadows. I also notice the crowd of photographers outside of it.
“So, I didn’t know there would be paparazzi here tonight; it’s kind of hit and miss with them. If you want to go a different night, we can.”
“Are they allowed inside?” Walking past them I can handle, but having people snapping pictures while I’m shoveling food in my mouth is
something I’m okay with.
“No, they won’t let them inside. Once we get past the door we’re home free.”
“Okay, let’s go in then.” I slide over to the door and am about to get out when Luke grabs my hand. I turn to look at him and see him holding my hat out to me. I grab it and put it on.
“Let me go out first, okay?” I nod my head, and as he’s climbing over me, he leans down to kiss me. If this is going to be everyday life with him I can really get used to it. He makes me feel so cared for and he always seems to know exactly what I’m thinking and feeling.
Once the door opens, the flashes and questions start, but I pay less attention to them this time. Maybe this
get easier, at least while we’re together. I can’t imagine trying to navigate through the paparazzi by myself. This time, instead of just holding my hand when I get out of the car, Luke puts his arm around me and pulls me close to his side. I wonder why he’s doing this now; does he
them to know that we’re together? Was this a way of staking his claim? I know from the brief encounter I had with him after Jackson hit on me that he can be very jealous. I’ll just add this to the list of things I’m going to have to adjust to.
We walk up to the hostess stand and the woman behind it immediately recognizes Luke. She shows us to a table that’s on the outside deck. Once we sit down I look around; this is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Our table is right by the railing that separates the restaurant and the beach. Instead of normal seats, we sit on ottomans. As soon as the hostess walks away, Luke stands up, picks up his ottoman and places it right next to mine. He puts his hand around my hip and pulls me close to him as we look over the menu together.
The first thing I notice is how expensive everything is; I could never afford to eat at someplace like this. I guess for Luke, not needing to look at the price tag is normal; I doubt I’ll ever get used to it. His thumb is drawing little circles on the small area of bare skin between my shirt and my shorts. I stare out at the beach where the sun is just setting and lean my head against him. He kisses the top of my head and I turn to look at him.
“Do you know what you want to eat, beautiful?”
I have no idea what half of this stuff is, and the prices are scaring me away from the other half of it. I don’t come from money so I’ve never been comfortable spending a lot of it. “Not really.”
“Well, do you want it to be a surprise? We can take a chance and see if we like what we get.”
I laugh because only Luke would order food that costs this much without knowing if it’s something he would even like. “Sounds good.”
The waitress shows up and he tells her that we want their two best-selling appetizers and entrees. When he tells her that she isn’t allowed to tell him what they are, she looks so confused.
“So what do you think of Malibu so far?”
“I think it’s beautiful; I can’t wait to see what your house looks like.”
He leans in close to my ear and whispers, “I can’t wait to have you
Have me? Like have me, have me?
My body and mind are at war with each other right now. My body is ready to give him everything and enjoy every minute of it, while my mind is reminding me not to be some star struck idiot who gets her heart broken. “Calm down, I just meant that this is all so new to me and I have never taken anyone to my house before.”
“Really?” I’m not an idiot; I know that Luke has been with plenty of girls before me, so this really surprises me.
“Yes, really. My house is kind of like my escape so I don’t take just anyone there.”
The rest of dinner is amazing; the food is some of the most delicious I have ever had
. The appetizers consist of shrimp scampi and scallops. Besides the crab cakes we had on our first dinner date, I’ve never really had much seafood, but I’ve discovered that I really enjoy it. Our entrees are Maine lobster with garlic roasted potatoes and steamed vegetables. Everything is cooked to perfection and seems to almost melt in my mouth. Luke stays close to me and I have to admit that I love it. We talk and laugh all through dinner and it all feels so normal.
When it’s time to leave, Luke texts his driver to pull the car up, and holds me close as we make our way through the paparazzi again.
It’s only about a half hour drive to his house, and when we pull up my mouth drops open. It has to be, by far, the nicest house I have ever seen. It has a cream color stucco finish and it is surrounded by palm trees. The roof has dark brown shingles, and there are enormous sliding doors on the second floor that lead out to an attached balcony. As I’m climbing the steps I can’t help but feel out of place, especially when I look up and see his front door. It has to be almost ten feet tall, made of a dark brown wood, and looks like it was handmade with all of the intricate designs in it. He walks up and unlocks the door, then looks back at me and laughs. “You might like it even more when you go inside, you know.”
I start walk into to the house, embarrassed at how dumbfounded I must have looked. Once I’m in the house, my expression doesn’t get any better. The entry is circular with a big staircase leading up to the second floor. The staircase reminds the ones you see princesses descending in the fairy tales with finely crafted spindles and a beautifully carved banister. The walls are pretty bare except for a couple of pictures hung on the wall, and the only other thing in the room is a small white leather loveseat against one of the walls. There are different doorways up and down the halls, which I’m guessing lead to many more extravagant rooms. I turn to face Luke and see him smirking at me. I must look like such an idiot gawking at his house. The doorbell rings, saving me from further embarrassment.
Saved by the bell.
“Who the hell can that be?” Luke walks over to the door and pulls it open. Before he can say anything else his manager that I had met at the concert comes walking in. When he sees me standing there he stops and looks at me as if I’m some parasite that he can’t get rid of. With each passing moment I’m regretting coming here; I feel more and more like I don’t belong.
He turns back to Luke, completely ignoring my existence. “Can we go somewhere to talk?”
Luke walks over, stands next to me and puts his arm around my waist. “I thought I told you when we talked earlier that I would see you tomorrow. What’s so important?”
That must have been who Luke was talking to on the phone. I can understand why he’s giving him a hard time about having me here. I mean, our relationship has really moved at a rapid pace compared to “conventional” ones.
“It won’t take long, Lucas. Why don’t we just go into your office?”
He doesn’t wait for an answer, but walks straight toward one of the doorways. I turn to Luke who looks irritated. “Why don’t I go take a shower and let you guys talk?”
He shakes his head no. “Stay with me. Mike needs to get used to you being around, babe.”
The last thing I want to do is walk into that office and have Mike give me dirty looks the whole time. “No, really, it’s not a big deal. I could use a shower after the flight and everything, anyway.”
“Okay, I won’t be long. My bedroom is upstairs, the last door on the right.” He leans down and gives me a kiss.
I bend down, grab my tote bag that has just a couple changes of clothes in it and head upstairs to find the bathroom.