Braelyn said goodbye to her friends from the Rover again a couple of weeks later. Mikey had flown back to Dallas again the night before so she didn’t have to fly alone. This fact made it way easier to get on the plane because, again, Braelyn found herself already homesick as well as being nervous about her latest adventure. When Mikey and Braelyn got off the plane they found a waiting car that took them to some residential building.
“This is a little sketchy,” Braelyn said, standing on the sidewalk as the driver unloaded her luggage.
“Nah,” Mikey said, putting an arm around her, “It’s the record label’s apartment. It’s pretty sweet. We’ve stayed here a couple of times. You’re like a block from the park and five blocks from the label’s building.”
“Cool,” Braelyn said, grabbing her bag. Then Mikey led her into the lobby of the building.
Mikey introduced her to the doorman and the woman behind the lobby’s desk. She gave Braelyn a package left for her by the label. It included the keys to the fifteenth floor penthouse that the woman directed her to.
Mikey and Braelyn stepped out of the elevator and into the fifteenth floor alcove. Braelyn managed to key open the door and gasped. The apartment was beautiful. Braelyn dropped her bags at the door and went to go explore breathlessly. Big windows in the living room looked out over the neighboring buildings, giving a spectacular view of Central Park. The kitchen was huge and there was a big dining table in a sunny nook that overlooked the street below. It was one of those fancy apartments complete with formal dining room and a sitting room. There were three bedrooms plus a master suite. Located on the same side of the building as the living room, there was a wall of windows with the same view of the park.
Braelyn launched herself on to the king sized bed and bounced, shouting “This is so awesome!!”
Mikey was laughing at her when he walked in the room with the luggage. “Told you it was sweet.”
Braelyn bounced off the bed and wrapped her arms around Mikey and kissed him. He dropped the bags and pulled her to him. Braelyn broke the kiss and buried her face in his chest. He kissed the top of her head.
“I’m freaking out a bit,” she whispered after a couple of seconds.
“I know,” he said, squeezing her. “But it’s a good freak out. This is going to be awesome.” She nodded. Mikey held her at arm’s length. “Good. Now come on. The boys want to meet you for lunch before your supposed to go meet with the guys in suits.”
“Ok! I just have to change.”
Mikey rolled his eyes, thinking about Ray’s lament from the beginning of tour about girls and their hair. Braelyn reappeared a few minutes later. Gone were the sweatpants and sweatshirt she had worn on the plane replaced with skinny jeans, a red and navy striped sweater and ballet flats. Her hair was in a long, loose braid over her shoulder instead of messily piled on top of her head.
She grabbed her purse from the stack of bags on the floor. “All set.”
Her arm through Mikey’s, she allowed him to lead her out of the building and down the street. A while later they were walking down 5th Avenue and Braelyn was looking at all the window displays thinking about how much she loved New York. Then they crossed the street and Mikey pointed. Braelyn followed his line of sight.
“Frankie!” She yelled, letting go of Mikey and sprinting down the rest of the block and into Frankie’s arms. He picked her up and spun her around.
“Hi. Hi. Hi!” Frankie put her down and she launched herself into Gerard’s embrace. “Hi Gee! I missed you!”
“Hey kid.” He held her close. “I missed you, too. Congrats on everything!”
“Thanks.” Then she turned to Ray. “Hey you.”
“Hi, Brae.” Ray bear hugged her. “How was your trip?”
“How’s my girl?” Topher asked, coming to hug her next.
Braelyn clutched him tightly. “I’m ridiculously wonderful. The apartment is beautiful and I love everything.”
“Glad it’s to your satisfaction,” he replied with a chuckle.
Mikey had arrived by that point and Braelyn had noticed another person there. A pretty blond girl was hanging onto Gerard’s hand now.
“Braelyn, I want you to meet someone.” Gerard tugged the girl forward. “This is my girlfriend, Quinn. Quinn, this is Braelyn.”
“It’s awesome to meet you,” Braelyn said, hugging the girl who was a little stiff. “Sorry. I’m a hugger.”
She relaxed a bit and smiled. “It’s nice to meet you, too. Gee and the boys talk about you all the time.”
At that moment, Frankie picked Braelyn up again shouting, “I MISSED YOU!”
Braelyn laughed. “You saw me like a week and a half ago.”
“Ok. Put her down,” MIkey said. “Let’s go eat.”
Frankie did not follow instructions. He simply carried Braelyn inside and only put her down when she promised to sit next to him. Mikey sat down on her other side while the others took seats around the table. They all ordered and Braelyn, Topher, and the boys all chatted about whatever. Quinn sat quietly next to Gerard, still hanging onto her hands. Braelyn did her best to draw the other girl into conversation, but Quinn seemed nervous. Braelyn mentally shrugged and tried to ignore the funny faces Frankie was making at her to pay attention to what Topher was trying to tell her.
“So we have a meeting in an hour,” he was saying. “We’ll find out when and where you’ll be recording and what other things the company wants you to do.”
“We’ll go hang out at your sweet new apartment,” Ray said. “Then we can figure out what we want to do tonight.”
They finished their meals and someone, Braelyn didn’t know who, paid for the food. Back out on the sidewalk, Braelyn gave Mikey her keys. The boys wished her luck and hugged her goodbye, Mikey leaving a kiss on her cheek.
A/N: My dearest Abbie, Han, and Mikey, I'm so glad you're still reading! Here's another chapter and I hope you enjoy it. So this month I'm participating in NaNoWriMo and I'm having a blast, but if you know anything about me, you know that I am a master procrastinator, so perhaps I will be working on this story instead of my 'novel.' Anyway, enjoy. Also, any awesome stories I should be reading? Hearts, Corri