“You don’t have to stay out here. I know I’m not exciting,” Gerard said after they’d been sitting there for a while.
“I don’t mind. I don’t have anything else to do anyway,” Braelyn replied, still sitting in her corner, book open.
“You could be sleeping,” he pointed out.
“So could you,” she said back.
Braelyn went back to trying to read. Her eyes kept jumping around the page. A few minutes later, she gave up, frustrated.
“What’s wrong?” Gerard asked after she sighed and tossed her book to the other side of the seat.
“Let’s do something else then.”
“Suggestions?” Braelyn asked.
“We could read the comments on our video. Make another? I don’t know.”
“Laptop?” She asked.
Gerard got up and went back into the bunkroom. He returned a few seconds later toting the computer. Braelyn patted the seat beside her and he sat down. They spent the next few hours scrolling through the almost million comments that had been made on their video.
“Look at this one,” Braelyn said pointing, “'Can George come to my college graduation. I feel like his presence would make it legit.’”
“I like the ones claiming that George discovered us, not the other way around,” Gerard laughed.
“WELL HE IS A FAMOUS PERFORMER,” Braelyn said forcefully.
“We should put that one up.”
Gerard nodded eagerly. As the sun rose and they crossed the San Diego city line, Braelyn was tweeting at Gerard. “Hey @gerardway! Looks like George has been at it again. God, sometimes he’s so pretentious.”
At the hotel, Mikey tried to get Braelyn to go to bed. She passed, choosing to drink another energy drink. She sat on the couch in the suite with her guitar and a manuscript book, working on new songs. Around nine AM, Topher knocked on the door. Braelyn answered it.
He paused and looked at her up and down. He asked, “Have you been up this whole time?”
“I had some stuff to work out,” she said, gesturing to the paper and guitar on the table. “What can I do for you?”
“Well, you and Frankie are supposed to go to a radio interview, but you should definitely get some sleep.”
“I’m fine,” Braelyn replied. “Go wake up Frankie. By the time you drag his ass out of bed I’ll be ready to go.” She grabbed her drink and headed to her room. She dug out her recently laundered and folded denim cutoffs and a button up cotton shirt. Once changed, she went to the bathroom. She winced when she looked in the mirror, now seeing what Topher was staring at. Her hair was crazy disheveled and she had pretty intense circles under her eyes. Nothing a hairbrush and some makeup couldn’t fix.
Braelyn went back out into the living room. Topher was sitting on the couch looking at her manuscript book. She sat on the arm of the couch next to him. “Do I look acceptable?”
He looked up at her, looking slightly guilty from being caught looking at her book. “Acceptable. Great actually.”
“Why thanks.” Braelyn pointed to her book. “You like it?”
“Oh. Sorry. It was open.”
“No problem. It’s not like they’re secret.”
“I don’t know how to read music very well, but I like the lyrics.”
“Good. I’ve got a lot of work to do on them, but I’m diggin it so far.” Braelyn walked over to the fridge and got another energy drink out and popped the top as Frankie walked out.
“Let’s do this!” He yelled.
Braelyn rolled her eyes, but Topher was staring at her again. When she noticed, she asked, “What? I brushed my hair and got rid of the circles.”
“How many of those have you had today?”
“These?” Braelyn brandished her drink. Topher nodded. “Like three? Gerard and I were up all night, so I need a bit of a boost.”
Topher looked at her skeptically, but let it go. They went downstairs in the hotel and got into a waiting car and headed to some radio station. They were introduced to this DJ, Dan. Frankie and Braelyn were sat down around the booth table and given headphones. The intro music played.
“Good morning ladies and gentlemen,” Dan said into the microphone in front of his face. “Hope you’re having a rockin’ Friday so far. Here to maybe make it a little better is none other than Frank Iero from My Chemical Romance.”
“Hey everybody,” Frankie said into his microphone.
“And the lovely Miss Braelyn Porter who is touring with them.”
“Hi,” Braelyn answered.
“So you’ve been on tour now for a couple of weeks. From the outside looking in, it seems like it’s been a little rough. Want to tell us about it?”
“It definitely has been a wild ride,” Braelyn said.
“But we’ve weathered the storm well, if I say so myself,” Frankie added.
“I heard that Braelyn has faced some backlash by fans. As a new artist, how do you deal with that?”
“Well,” Braelyn began, “It was rough. But I can remember being a fan and being suspicious of new people on the scene. I understand. And I’m really lucky for not only this chance that I’ve been given to put my music out there, but also, the universe has placed me with these awesome people to help guide me. The boys and Topher have taught me so much about how to be, and I’ll always be grateful.”
“Lucky girl,” Dan said.
“You have no idea.”
“Now to the issue we’ve all been dying to hear about. Bob leaving. What can you tell us about that?”
Frankie took a breath. Topher had predicted this question. “First of all, as a band, My Chem wants everyone to know that we still love Bob. He’ll always be an integral part of what we are. However, I can’t tell you why he left, I actually don’t think I know. We miss him being around, but we’re doing our best to move on.”
“So did he just leave one day? Or did you know about it ahead of time?”
Frankie looked a Braelyn who shrugged and they both looked at Topher through the glass. He mouthed ‘You can tell him whatever.’
“He told us one morning and he left after the show later that night,” Frankie said shortly.
“Well let’s take a short break, and when we come back we can hear a song from Miss Porter,” Dan said and pressed a button. When they were off the air, he said, “Sorry for the hard questions guys. You’re last couple of weeks haven’t exactly been drama free.”
“We understand,” Braelyn answered for the both of them. She could tell Frankie was getting angry. She put on a hand on his shoulder to comfort him. “It just happened so recently that it’s still pretty raw.”
Dan nodded. Then asked, “Do you mind playing for us?”
“Not at all,” Braelyn answered smiling, then taking a drink. She stood up, kissed Frankie’s head, and said, “Cheer up, friend.”
He nodded and watched as Braelyn strapped up and played ‘My Favorite Kind of Pain.’ Frankie was awestruck at his friend. He couldn’t believe they found her. She was truly great. He hugged her fiercely when she finished playing.
Then they said goodbye to the radio station staff and headed back to the hotel for a few hours before they had sound checks. Everyone was gathered in Braelyn and Frankie’s suite ordering food. Braelyn grabbed another drink before sitting on the couch next to Mikey, leaning her head on his shoulder.
“Hey Braelyn,” Topher said, “If you get a chance, maybe you should nap?”
Braelyn shrugged. She wouldn’t outright refuse his request, but she knew she wouldn’t be sleeping.
After lunch, everyone went their separate ways leaving Braelyn and Mikey on the couch.
“Come on,” he said to her. “Topher’s right you need a nap.”
She raised an eyebrow at him.
“Gerard says you haven’t slept in days.” When she still didn’t move, he sighed. “Will you please just come watch a movie with me?”
She nodded and stood up. In her room, she cuddled up next to Mikey while he searched for something to watch. “I know I seem a little crazy right now. Sleeping just isn’t happening right now.”
He nodded, kissing the side of her head. “I wish you would tell me why.”
Braelyn just buried her head in his chest and shook her head no, choking back tears.
“It’s ok.” Mikey put down the remote and wrapped his other arm around her. “You don’t have to say.”
They spent the rest of their time off watching bad tv movies. Then it was time for their usual show night mayhem and then back on the bus for the short ride to LA and the hotel they’d be staying in for a couple of days.
A/N: Go review. Hope you like it. I'd be more excitable here, but I have a headache. hearts, Corri