“Wait, so how did you get this place again?” Nate called from the crowded back seat as Gabe’s car sped down the highway.
“I know a guy who was going to be out of town anyway.” Gabe shrugged.
“Who do you know that lives out here?” He looked out the window at the passing houses becoming bigger and more impressive. Gabe pulled into a driveway and around to the back of the house. Everyone piled out of the car, grabbing their clothes and the equipment they’d need to film and entered the building. They found themselves in a large kitchen that looked like it belonged in a restaurant.
“Whoa.” Ryland gasped as they all wandered around, taking in the room.
“Are you sure this place is someone’s house and not like a hotel or something?” Alex raised his eyebrows.
“Holy crap, look at this!” Victoria laughed, pointing at a photo attached to the refrigerator by a Fueled By Ramen magnet. Everyone crowded around the slightly blurry picture, trying to get a good look at it. It was obviously Gabe, standing in front of a van and trailer with his arm around a short blonde girl in an ugly plaid skirt and blue polo shirt and matching knee socks. He was grinning wildly, and she was sneering at the camera.
“Who is that?” Ryland squinted at the photo.
“She’s kind of hot.” Nate nodded.
“What is she wearing?” Victoria giggled.
“That’s my school uniform.” Katie said over their shoulder.
“You?” Alex looked from her to the photo.
“I had a growth spurt my junior year.”
“This is your house?” Victoria looked around. “It makes sense now. You’re the only one Gabe knows that’s this rich. Or this clean.”
“I’m sorry I said you were hot.” Nate looked at the ground.
“It’s ok. It’s not the first time.” Katie smirked.
“Let’s go make a video.” Gabe said, marching off through the house.
“You don’t know where you’re going!” Katie rushed after him with everyone else following, looking all around them like it was some kind of museum.
“Ok.” Victoria called, stepping around to the front of the camera. I set everything up, you just have to push the button.
“Awesome.” Katie jogged back into the room. “All I found was Excedrin Migraine, Nyquil or children’s Tylenol that I can’t guarantee hasn’t been here since I was 7.”
“I guess I’ll go for the Nyquil.” Gabe shrugged as she handed the bottle to him.
“Should you really take that during the day?” Alex nodded towards the medicine as Gabe took a big gulp, grimacing at the taste.
“Nah, it’ll be fine.” He croaked out.
“Hey, so where is everyone anyway? We always hear about all the people always running around this place.” Ryland asked.
“Yeah, and where’s your camera guys?” Nate added.
“Well, My sister got invited to the opening of some nightclub in Miami, so all the camera guys went with her. My dad is Switzerland meeting with someone to build a ski resort, and my mom always goes with him. The chauffer goes too, to you know, chauffer. And when no one’s here, they give the housekeeper and the gardeners those days off. Are we ready?” She poised her finger over the red button on the camera.
“Hold on.” Gabe sniffed and coughed a couple times. “Ok.”
“Action!” Katie pressed record while simultaneously turning on her iPod speakers. The opening of Prostitution is the World’s Oldest Profession started and the band members all began running down the hallway.
By the time they were finished shooting the video, the Nyquil bottle was drained and Gabe was about ready to pass out. “We just need the shot of the boys jumping into the pool and we’re done. Victoria nodded.
“You’re not going too?” Gabe slurred, stumbling out the door.
“No.” Victoria laughed.
“Because I don’t want to. Now hurry up, it’s getting dark.”
“And that dress does NOT get wet.” Katie said, following them, dragging the camera and tripod with her. “I want to marry it and have its little sequined babies.”
“But it’s cold.” Nate whined, sticking his hand in the pool.
“Quit being a baby! Man up and take one for the team.” Katie punched him, lightly, in the arm.
“Got anymore cliches in there?” Alex laughed.
“A penny saved is a penny earned if you don’t count all your chickens before they hatch, because the early bird gets the worm.” Katie grinned.
“When I say go, everyone run and jump in the pool.” Victoria said, looking through the camera. “And…go!” They all jumped, yelling and flailing into the pool.
“Ok, now get out. Your outfits are rented.” Katie urged from the side.
“Lighten up.” Gabe grabbed her pant leg and pulled. She fell head first into the pool, shrieking the moment her head reached the surface.
“This sweater’s dry clean only!” She cried.
“Well it’s not anymore.” Nate dunked her head back underwater.
Katie knocked on the door and poked her head in Gabe’s room later that night. “Can I sleep in here? It’s the only room that’s not filled with TV equipment.”
“Yeah, sure.” Gabe nodded, moving over in the bed. It had taken a while but they were finally clean, dry and warm. Katie had hung the rented clothes over every available surface in the apartment in an attempt to dry them out, but all it had done was make the entire place smell like the locker room at the community pool. Katie glanced out the window on her way across the room.
"That guy has been standing on the corner since this morning."
"What guy?" He craned his neck to see without getting up.
"It's nothing. He's probably waiting for someone." She shrugged, sliding in next to him with a sigh. “I’m so tired.”
“Tell me about it, you didn’t drink half a bottle of Nyquil.”
“Me and Andy broke up.”
“You were going out with Hurley too?” He widened his eyes as she shook her head, giving him a look. “Oh…right. I forgot Butcher had a real name.” He chuckled. “What did he do? Do I have to beat him up?”
“No.” She shook her head. “We just decided it wasn’t as much fun when we weren’t sneaking around. We really don’t have that much in common.”
“Oh. I’m sorry anyway.” He looked over at her and she just shrugged.
“Your bed’s more comfortable than mine.” She rolled over, snuggling in close to him the way she had for years.
Here's the dress since I forgot it in the last one. It's hard to explain.