Jared and Shannon have a falling out; Skyla runs into Tomo; Jared and Shannon both fall hard for Skyla. **cliffhanger**
` Skyla took off down the hallway of the hotel they were in and got in the elevator going down. She pressed the button for the lobby and descended eight floors. When the elevator doors opened, she glided toward the front doors of the hotel. As she stepped out into the warm night, she didn't know that Jared and Shannon were still arguing eight floors above.
"I can't believe you did that!" Shannon yelled at Jared.
"Me? What about you? You were munching on Skyla's face!" Jared shouted.
Neither one of the men had yet noticed that Skyla had disappeared; their argument continued as they walked around their hotel room packing bags.
"I bought her a necklace. She owns one like it; it's in her bag!" Shannon spat at Jared.
"Like I'm going to believe that," Jared hissed in a low voice. He rolled up a pair of jeans and stuck them in his bag, followed by more jeans, shirts, and sneakers.
While Jared and Shannon continued to argue, Skyla was walking down the street with tears streaming down her face. She kept trying to wipe them away with her hands but it wouldn't work; her face was red and puffy from crying.
Suddenly someone grabbed her from behind. "Where're you going?" the person asked her.
Skyla stammered an answer. "I, uh, um..."
The person laughed, and she recognized the laugh. "Come on, let's go get some coffee," he told her. Skyla finally let a small smile escape from her lips; she turned and told Tomo, "I don't drink coffee, but I drink Frappucinos!"
"About time you recognized me!" he told her. "Where's Jared and Shannon?" He started looking for the two of them.
"They're back at the hotel. Where's Vicki and Emma?" she asked Tomo.
"They're down the street at another hotel!" he told her with a laugh. "We're staying in one, and you guys are staying in another, how funny!" He started walking in the direction Skyla was already heading, "We'll go get Vicki and Emma; and then we'll get some coffees and then go get Jared and Shannon," he decided.
Skyla grinned at him. A few blocks behind her, Jared and Shannon's dispute continued to grow.
"Why'd you even come look for me anyways?" Jared asked Shannon icily.
"Because I'm your older brother." Shannon finished packing his bag and turned to look at Jared. "And I look out for you." With those words, Shannon left Jared standing alone in their hotel room amidst his clothes and Skyla's clothes.
Shannon went to the receptionist at the front desk. "Can I get a room for one, please?" he asked her as politely as he could after his and Jared's argument.
"Sure." She handed him a key to a room on the fourth floor and a goodbye with a sickly sweet smile.
"Thank you." Shannon turned and left. He pressed the "up" button at the elevators and then hit the button for the fourth floor. As the elevator ascended this time, he quizzed himself on how he liked Skyla: as a friend or something more.
He exited the elevator when it reached the fourth floor and went to find his room. He walked in and plopped on the bed; his mind was reeling with all of the events that had happened so far.
Shannon jumped up and ran out the door. He had to find Skyla. Last time she argued with someone, she almost got hurt. Now him and Jared were arguing, and she was gone. He tried calling her - it rang five times before it went to voicemail.
"Hey this is Sky-" Shannon hung up and tried again. He hit redial and started praying. She answered.
"Skyla? Where are you?" he asked her hurriedly.
"I'm with Tomo." Her phone was breaking up; Shannon had to strain to hear.
"Okay, as long as you're safe," he said. He breathed a sigh of relief.
Shannon went to a bar that was inside their hotel. A scantily clad waitress came up to him and asked him what he'd have.
"Just a Heineken, please. Thanks." Shannon started breaking peanuts and wishing he and Jared would get along. Suddenly his phone went off.
"Heyyyy!" Tomo's voice resonated in his ear. "Long time, no see. How have you been?"
Shannon bit his lip. "Always better, but it could be worse."
"Know how that is. Skyla's with me," Tomo started.
"Tell us something we don't know," Shannon thought.
"And we're heading over that way pretty soon," he finished up.
That Shannon didn't expect. Him and Jared were in different rooms and they weren't about to meet up somewhere just to see Skyla, or Tomo or anyone else. Shannon sighed.
Later on that evening Jared was upstairs and was waiting on Skyla to see if she would come back up to that room, or Shannon if he'd come apologize. He was mostly expecting Shannon, but wasn't surprised when neither showed up by midnight. He sent Skyla a text: "Where are you". She replied almost immediately, "With Tomo". A simple two word text. Jared got up off the bed and slipped his sneakers on and went out the door, all the while asking Skyla, "Where". He headed for the stairs and slipped the phone in his pocket, ignoring it when she replied back. He didn't want to hurt himself by falling down the stairs because of his new phone. It was a cheap disposable one; he couldn't wait until they got back to the United States and he got a new BlackBerry. When he reached the lobby, he looked at her text and saw an address for a hotel just down the street. He passed the bar and noticed Shannon inside; he scoffed and went outside.
Skyla was irritated. She had not only told the little information she knew about this hotel to Jared but she was also waiting for him like some sort of groupie. After twenty minutes, she headed to the drugstore across the street and asked the girl for help on a couple boxes of hair dye. The girl (who was about Skyla's age) told her in a thick accent that she would look good with light brown hair. Skyla bought the boxes with some euros Jared and Shannon had given her and left with her bag. When she crossed the street to the hotel, she saw Jared walking toward her. Her heart lifted.
"I came by earlier but you weren't here, so I walked back down to where we're staying and came back." He said Shannon's name with a slight grimace, as if he was clenching his teeth.
"Yeah I was across the street. I'm thinking of dying my hair..." she trailed off and twirled a thick strand of hair around her forefinger.
"Ooh can I help?" Jared had a pleading smile on his face.
"Sure." She smiled back.
Jared grabbed her bag and looked inside. "This color won't change your hair!" he laughed. Skyla laughed with him. Jared tossed the hair dye to some hobo and dragged her to a beauty supply shop. "If I go in, I'm gay. If you go in, though..." he snickered.
"But you can just tell them you're looking for manpolish," she protested. "Or guyliner!"
Jared shook his head. He gave her about fifty euros and pushed her inside the shop. He sat down outside and waited; she came back about ten minutes later and asked him, "What color?"
"Ehh... auburn?" he guessed. Despite what he had said, Jared followed her into the beauty supply shop.
Together they looked at auburn tones and decided on one that was close to a dark brown but also pretty. Jared grinned. "You'd look really Irish with this hair color!" he told her.
Skyla gave him a sheepish grin. "I actually am Irish. But not much." Together they bought the hair color and went back to his hotel room; Skyla texted Emma and told her where she was.
Jared sat down on the bed while Skyla dug out an old tee and some board shorts. She changed in the bathroom and then dragged him in there. "I might need you!" she had said. He laid in the bathtub while she brushed out her hair with some difficulty; Jared took over after ten minutes of seeing her struggle. He was very gentle, Skyla noticed, running his fingers through her hair after each brushstroke and making sure each tangle was gone.
After her hair was brushed out, she mixed one box of hair dye together and started putting it on her hair. After awhile, Jared helped her do that too, taking the bottle from her and putting the dye in her hair. He did the same with the second box, making sure each strand was completely covered with dye. He had the silly plastic gloves on, but so did she. He grabbed the third box. "Just to be sure," he winked.
Skyla's heart fluttered. She thought she liked Shannon! Both sides of her brain waged war with each other; she let out the breath she was holding.
Jared mixed the third box and applied it to make sure there were no missed spots. When he was done, he took the remainder of the dye and hit the underside of Skyla's hair. She was laughing. He threw the rest of the dye away.
"Why?" she asked.
"I like my own color." A simple answer. She should've known.
About an hour later they hurried to wash the dye out. "I forgot about it," Skyla said apologetically.
"Don't worry; I did too." Jared took the plastic covering her hair off and inspected her hair. "You can wash it out, I suppose?"
"Yes, now out," she told him forcefully. She gave him a small push toward the bathroom door.
Jared laughed as he walked out; he sat by the bathroom door as she washed the dye out. He was awaiting the final result.
"OH MY GOD!" Skyla said upon her first glimpse of her new hair.
Her sudden outburst had Jared running to the bathroom. He stopped short. She looking totally different; her hair was a dark auburn, almost burgundy color.
"I like it," he told her. She smiled.
Shannon left the bar after two Heinekens and went back to his room. He flopped on his bed and immediately fell asleep. He dreamed of nothing but Skyla and Jared. He knew Jared liked Skyla; how she felt about him was a mystery. Shannon liked her too, and wasn't afraid to show it. He just didn't know how Skyla felt about either one of them yet.
Shannon opened his eyes and rolled over on his back. He stared at the ceiling, wondering about who Skyla liked when he received a message.