the infamous club scene, in which Belle deals with her first encounter with reporters and photographers, and a awfully drunk best friend
"Kay, wake up! We have to go get him," I said, shaking Kay.
She mumbled before opening her eyes and yawning. "It's not even light outside. Besides, he's at my apartment, Belle. He can wait until morning..."
I shook my head 'no' and she incoherently mumbled something before grabbing her keys and following me to her car.
I heard the polyphonic ring tone from my pocked, and with my eyes still closed I grabbed for it.
"Hello?" I answered groggily, not minding to open my eyes. I pulled the light blanket tighter around my body and cradled the phone to my ear.
"She hit me first, Pete." Her words were slurred and her voice was raspy. I opened my eyes at the voice and sat up on the bed. At first I wasn't sure where I was, but upon looking to the right of me I noticed I had passed out in Belles room. The room was still dark and I looked over to the alarm clock which proudly read "2:30 A.M."
"Jane, I'm sleeping," I replied, rubbing my forehead with my fingertips and trying to keep my voice at a whisper.
"Come over?" She asked, trying to sound sultry, but only succeeding in making my head hurt more.
"Don't you have a boyfriend?" I asked, getting irritated. I was quickly developing a headache.
"Does it matter?" She asked, with a little more stance than I expected.
"You're fucking drunk and I'm not coming over, Jane. I'm going back to sleep now." I pulled the phone from my ear to end the call, but her voice came through the speaker loudly.
"Now you don't even want me!? You're little "Tinkerbelle" must be a good piece of-"
"For christ sake, Jane, will you fucking let it go? Belle is not the reason I don't want you! You being a fucking liar is the reason I don't want you!" I screamed, clutching the phone in anger.
"The only reason you aren't with her right now is because you would be burning bridges with Patrick. So go ahead, be with her!!" She said flatly and hung up. I kept the phone to my ear and thought about her words.
Why should I let her comments effect me?
The only reason you aren't with her right now is because you would be burning bridges with Patrick... The words echoed through me.
"Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you..." I faintly heard Belle sing as she walked threw the door and flipped on the light.
I looked up at Belle and then to my phone. The dial tone was pulsing through it.
"Are you okay?" Her soft gray eyes were filled with concern. Her hand slowly grabbed my chin and forced me to make eye contact with her.
"Why do I always overanalyze the English language?" I barely mumbled.
"Overanalysis is your hubris." She replied, trying to give me an heartening smile. Her hand dropped from my chin and grabbed mine.
"Do you want to talk about it?" She asked, taking a seat on her bed next to me.
I gave her a heartening smile. "No, it's nothing. Jane just called, so..." I trailed off, and she shook her head in understanding.
We sat there for a moment in silence. Belle shifted and smiled at me as she got up off of the bed. "I got you something for your birthday,"
"What is it?" I asked excitedly, letting my conversation with Jane leave my thoughts temporarily.
"I can't tell you! It will ruin the surprise,"
I chuckled at her excitement.
"You didn't have to get me anything-"
"I know, but I've had this picked out for a while. Just sit there and close your eyes," I looked at her with raised eyebrows and she stood with her hands on her hips.
"Peter Lewis-Kingston..." She grumbled. I sighed deeply and closed my eyes tightly. I heard her shuffle around before hearing her voice next to me again.
"Alright, put your hands out but keep your eyes closed," She instructed. I sighed and pulled my hands out of the blankets. I waited a second, and as soon as I felt the soft warm fur I opened my eyes.
"Holy shit! It's a dog!" I exclaimed, looking down at the white english bulldog as it sleepily looked up at me.
"I know you are really busy, and you don't think you can take care of it... but I met this dog breeder, and she showed him to me. I couldn't help but think of you," She said with excitement. I smiled widely and pulled the puppy up the my face. He outstretched his paw and placed it on my cheek before extending his tongue and letting it lap over my nose.
How could I not love this?
I looked over to Belle and pulled her into a one-armed hug. "I love him," I said, before pulling back and reaching down to rub his head.
"So now you have to name him," She said, taking a seat on her bed and scooting back to lean on the headboard as we both looked at the puppy.
"It has to mean something," She said and she snuggled her face into the puppys face.
I thought for a moment. "How about Torizmo?" I asked, looking down at him. The puppy looked up at me as if to say "no way". I smiled and Belle laughed. I thought for a second more.
"Hemingway," I said matter-of-factly, grabbing the puppy under his arms and pulling him up to my face.
"Now he has to have a middle name," She said, rubbing the dogs ears.
"You can give him that, as long as it's not a double middle name. Those suck,"
She thought for a second. "Charles. Hemingway Charles." She finished with a smile. I raised my eyebrows, but didn't put up a fight. Besides, Hemingway seemed to be satisfied.
I felt myself shiver and began to pull back the heavy maroon comforter from her bed.
I laid on my back, propped up on the headboard and Hemingway on my chest. She laid down next to me and rested her head against my arm, her left arm over my torso. "I miss this," She whispered softly. I replied with a "me too," before focusing back on Hemingway. As Hemingway closed his eyes I heard Belles breathing calm and become more rhythmic.
The words that Jane had said earlier came flooding to my mind. I could see where her insecurities came from. Belle and I have a friendship that is far from conventional, but that is just how it ended up happening. I've always been slightly attracted to Belle, but I've never acted on it because we developed a serious friendship, and not to mention the ties I have with her brother. But I will admit I've let my mind wander to the "what ifs" section of our friendship.
I don't think anyone would even realize it if Belle and I became more because of the nature of our friendship. We are always hanging out together, not to mention the times we've shared beds. The few nights that I'm in Chicago she's always my first choice bunk mate because my insomnia never kicks in when I sleep next to her.
She began to breath deeper, signaling me that she was falling into a deep slumber. I looked down to her and shifted down to get my head to lay flat against the pillow. Hemingway shifted on my chest for a moment before sprawling out and falling back asleep. Belle's small hand reached up and rested at the nape of my neck, letting her fingers slowly twirl the small strands of hair that rested there.
I reached my hand up to push the hair off of her face, resting it at the base of her neck. Isn't a great hand that fate dealt me? I'm stuck in a situation that couldn't be more difficult. I am attracted to her, but I can't deal with rejection, not from Belle. And even if she did want...something more...I would have to explain it to Patrick, which would be...well, it would suck. If all of that worked out I would have to be careful, because if she hurt me (or even worse, I hurt her) than all ties with Patrick would be lost. I guess this is one of those lose/lose situations. I don't think I like Belle enough to risk the above mentioned.
But for the sake of not only our friendship, but my friendship with Patrick, I hope I become a better actor.
I woke up the next morning to Hemingway licking my cheek and I slowly sat up. He nudged my hand with his head, signaling that he wanted to be scratched. I casually rubbed his ears and I heard a noise that sparked my interest: the shower. I heard Belle singing quite loudly and I smiled to myself before grabbing Hemingway and walking into the kitchen. I opened the fridge, grabbed the pitcher of juice and put as many ice cubes as I could fit into it. I sat Hemingway down and walked back up to her bedroom. I grabbed the handle of the bathroom door and smiled. Silly girl didn't lock it. I walked in and quietly shut the door behind me.
"The insider lingo had me at hello, and we go where the money goes," She sung loudly, and quite off-key.
I smiled as I walked up to the shower curtain and raised the pitcher of juice. "I want someone provocative and talkative, bu- HOLY SHIT!!!!" I threw the light plastic pitcher in the shower with her and finished the lyrics for her: "But it's so hard when you're shallow as a shower!!" and ran out of the bathroom, running into Patrick and falling on the ground. Before I had a chance to move Belle was hovering over us with her robe on and the orange juice still evident on her face. Patrick pushed me off of him and laughed out loud when he saw her stare him down.
"Oh my...holy, this is..." He was laughing so hard he couldn't complete his sentence.
I stood up and she walked closer to me, a stone cold look on her face. She was an inch from my face and I looked down at her.
"Do you have any last words, Wentz?" She asked, cocking her head to the side. She wrapped the robe tighter around her body and double knotted it.
"How does it feel to be part of a complete breakfast?" I asked. She stood there with shock written on her face.
I smiled widely and turned around running away from her and out of the bedroom. She was quickly behind me, chasing me down the stairs. When we reached the kitchen I ran behind the island and grabbed the counter. Andy was at the refrigerator, Joe and Kay were sitting at the bar stools at the island, and they all looked from Belle to me and back.
Andy just shrugged and opened up the fridge. "Hey, who drank the o.j.?" He asked, and I burst out laughing.
She walked closer to Kay and before I had a chance to comprehend what was happening she grabbed Kays bowl of cereal and flung it at me, hitting my chest and splashing on my face. I quickly recovered and reached the sink to grab the faucet. I pulled out the sprayer and pointed it at her with an evil smile.
"How's it feel to be part of a complete breakfast?" She asked, slowly coming closer.
"If you take one more step, I'll shoot," I warned.
She smiled widely and stepped closer.
"I swear to everything holy, Belle. One more, and-" She quickly pounced on my back and I started to spray her. She grabbed at my hand, turning my weapon on me.
"Alright! That's enough!" I heard Patrick, as he grabbed Belle off of me. I threw the sprayer in the sink as Belle fought to get Patrick off of her.
"You may have won this battle, Peter.. But the war has just begun," She said with a laugh.
"I had almost forgot how entertaining "Double Trouble" was. Thanks guys," Andy said, taking a seat next to Joe.
"Anytime," Belle and I said in unison.
"Are you going to the Tonic Room tonight?" Brock asked me as I sat in his oversized office. Wait, aren't I suppose to be his boss? Hmmm...
"Well, Brock, I don't-"
He cut me off. "Please Belle, I'm not asking you this time, I'm telling you. You will be there, and you will have fun," He said, letting a smile take over his features.
"But I don't have anything to wear-"
"I'll take care of it. Are you going with Christian?" He asked, pulling his cell phone out of his pocket.
"No. We called it quits last night. I don't want to talk about it," I said, reaching down to grab my bag and my cell phone. He just raised his eyebrows and decided to keep his nose out it.
"Hey, Deanna, it's Brock. I need a hair stylist now. Yes, grab one of those two. We'll meet you at the salon in twenty minutes," I heard Brock say.
I rolled my eyes. Sometimes this guy was just too much. David told me the production company couldn't legally hire me on to do this movie if I didn't have an agent, so it was more like Brock found me than I found him. He was really controlling most of the time, but David assured me it would get better. So far it hasn't.
I flipped open my phone and dialed a familiar number.
"Hey Kay, do you want to come to the Tonic Room with me tonight?"
"I guess I can. Pete is going to be D.J.ing there tonight," Kay informed me.
"Hmm, yea he is," I replied simply.
"Well, you don't have to ask me twice," and with that she hung up.
"I look like a reincarnation of Cindi Lauper. This is great," Belle joked, looking down at the outfit she was wearing. She was clad in a black skull print off-the-shoulder top, a pair of light skinny jeans and a pair of knee-high spiked heel boots that covered the bottom of the jeans.
"This sucks. I look like a douche bag. I don't even match," Kay complained, adjusting the dark mini skirt she was wearing, and pulling up the light green top. "You should have worn the skirt. These leggings are horrible," She complained, referring to the white skull-print leggings she was wearing.
"You know my no-skirt law still applies to 80's themed fiestas," Belle said with a snicker, as she grabbed a compact from her purse and admired her reflection. Her hair was in a ponytail pompadour and her eye makeup was a little heavy for her taste. She did look damn good though, after spending an hour in a stuffy beauty salon, with some guy tugging her head and prodding her eyes with varies eye make up.
As soon as the car stopped Kay grabbed Belles arm and started pulling her out of the car. When Belle peaked her head out as if to make sure they were at the right place. There was a small red carpet at her feet and she gingerly stepped onto it, Kay grabbing her hand for moral support.
A view of the photographers had set eyes on her, obviously hoping for a Paris Hilton, but settling for her instead. A couple of flashes went off in her direction, but then turned back to what had held their attention before her arrival.
"This is so exciting!" Kay exclaimed, as the photographers continued their unrelenting flashes. "Now move," Kay instructed.
"This is kind of a waste-" Belle was interrupted by a voice she recognized.
"Anabelle! Over here!" The voice cried. Belle looked over to see who it was, and walked further on the carpet, stopping to glance. She blinked the little lights away to take notice of the figure.
She frowned openly for a small second when she realized it was Christian, in the flesh. He was smiling widely, with a knowing look that basically said "You have to pretend to be friends with me,"
If he wanted to play the game, she wouldn't be the one losing. She grabbed Kay and walked over to him to give him a hug, all cameras flashing madly.
"My lovely Anabelle, you look marvelous!" He exclaimed, pulling her towards the crowd of reporters, photographers and paparazzi which began to buzz and scream to her. She had confessed to him her absolute fear of reporters and paparazzi once. She knew he was being facetious; he wanted to see her crumble.
"So you are Christians co-star on "Tales for an Accelerated Culture". Are you celebrating being done filming?" One of the reporters asked. Belle smiled as the camera lights flashed and were immediately on her. She felt tense, and the butterflies in her stomach wouldn't calm down.
But Brock had prepared her for this for a while. He taught her how to remain calm under pressure, and smile at all cost. Upon looking at her you couldn't tell she was nervous: she looked extraordinary and valiant. But on the inside she was ill at ease.
"Go talk to them," Kay whispered, and nudged Belle forward, breaking her out of her trance.
She walked up to the reporters and paparazzi. "Actually, it was just a reason to wear tight jeans and flashy clothes," Belle replied with poise as the cameras exploded multiple times.
"Is your first time on film?" One asked, jostling a microphone toward her.
"Yes, but originally I planned to stay with theater and ignore the big screen, but I read the script... and, well, I was made to do this role. It also helps that David is directing it. He is a genius," She said with a grin as the cameras flickered.
"So, tell us about your character," One who was closest to her asked.
"Well, I play Claire, who is this very nostalgic rebel who feels like she's lost serenity within herself. It's based loosely on Douglas Coupeland's 'Generations X'. It's just hard to describe, because the screenplay is aberrant. You are definitely going to have to come out and see it," Belle beamed. She looked over to see Christian looking somewhat defeated and she smiled widely as he made his way into the club. One victory for her. Or was it two?
She was kind of eating this up, Kay noticed and grabbed her arm to pull her out of her daze.
"Anabelle, over here!" One threw up his arm, and when she looked over at him exclaimed "Can we get some pictures of you alone?" She nodded her head and leaned on her left leg with her hand on her hip and her head held high.
Kay tugged on her arm and Belle smirked politely before excusing herself, turning to walk into the building, Kay following her closely.
"Wow, they took a lot of pictures," Kay said, once they got inside. Belle couldn't hear anything, the sounds from outside were still ringing in her ears.
Pete was with sitting Hemingway in his arms, comfortably in a booth with Joe. He looked to the door when he heard the shouts and saw the flashes. He adjusted his eyes to the entrance and let a smile overcome his features. The cameramen still screaming for her.
"Holy shit, that's Belle!" Joe shouted to Pete. Pete leaned his head closer and kept his eyes on her.
He watched as almost every person in the crowded club gazed at Belle as she was quickly ushered up to the VIP area by various security guards provided by the club. She took a seat next to them and Kay instantaneously started talking. "Belle just got swamped by the press," Kay said.
Pete raised his eyebrows at her and let his eyes scan the length of Belle as she tucked her legs under her body and bit her lip.
"Are you okay?" Joe asked. Pete and Kay looked at her with concern on their faces.
"That was really...weird..." She said with a weak smile.
Belle kept her eyes focused on her pant leg. Hemingway crawled his way over from Pete's lap to Belles side and nudged her. She picked him up and sat him on her lap, running a hand mechanically over his fur.
On a regular day she would be yelling about this behavior, Pete bringing Hemingway to a "smoke filled club". She seemed to be comforted by his presence.
Pete scooted closer to her and grabbed her chin, forcing her to look at him. She looked flawless, and the make up she was wearing accented her features ten fold. She winked at him and smiled before focusing her attention back on Hemingway.
"What's wrong?" Pete asked, just above a whisper.
"I dunno. They were asking me about the movie, and my career. It was great, Pete. I never expected anyone to take notice of it, really," She trailed off, finally looking at him. He gave her an encouraging smile.
"Why? Does that bother you?" Joe asked, moving closer.
"No, I thought it would be harder to deal with, actually. I think I may enjoy this," She finished with a sigh.
"Well, just be careful, because if you become a camera whore like this fuck over here, I may have to beat you," Joe finished, giving her a comfortable smile. She took a deep breath and lightly beamed.
"Thanks," She said, pulling him into a hug.
"Alright, that's enough of that. I want you to dance with me," Kay said, grabbing Belles hand and helping her up from the couch. Belle reluctantly stood up and handed Hemingway to Pete before following Kay down the stairs and on to the dance floor.
Nelly Furtado's "Promiscuous Girl" started blearing from the PA system.
"Should we worry about her?" Pete asked Joe, as they both watched the girls dancing.
"The best thing we can do is be there for her. I have a feeling she's going to need us a lot in the next couple of months. The press is going to have a field day with her," Joe finished.
"Why is that?" Pete asked him, furrowing his eyebrows in confusion.
"Look at her. She is gorgeous, naive, talented, and she has a bad history of letting stress get to her," Joe paused. "Her career is going to boom, and when this movie comes out she is going to be in the spotlight. I just hope she is able to handle it," Joe said, relaxing back into the plush couch.
The D.J.'s voice came over the PA. "Alright, and here is the man of the hour. Everyone give it up for Pete Wentz!" He screamed, and Pete handed Hemingway over to Joe before walking to the turn tables. He put the headphones around his neck before talking into the microphone.
"Alright, ladies and gentleman! Let's bring it back to the 80's!" Pete exclaimed, before a remix of "Heartbreaker" by Pat Benetar came over the PA system.
Meanwhile Belle and Kay excused themselves to get something to drink. They walked up to the VIP area and to the bar. "I need a rum and coke, tall," Kay ordered. "Just a red bull," Belle said, turning around on the stool to watch Pete work the turntables.
"Here ya go," He said, handing her the can with a straw. Kay took this opportunity to lean across the bar and make small talk with the bartender. Belle smiled, knowing Kay had no serious intentions with this guy.
"You sure you need to be drinking?" She heard Christians voice ask from next to her. She turned in her stool until it faced him.
"It's red bull. But even if it wasn't, last I checked I was old enough to make my own decisions," Belle said with distaste.
"Yea, your really good with that," He said with sarcasm dripping from his words.
"I guess you have a point. I made the decision to date you," She retorted.
"Yea, I'm the only one stupid enough to go for your 'no hanky-panky until we've been dating for a year' rule," He said with an arrogant smile on his face.
"Has the thought ever crossed your mind that maybe I'm not attracted to you? That the thought of you rolling around on top of me doesn't sound that appealing?" She asked with a slow smile. None of that was true, and he knew it. He was gorgeous.
"Whatever, Belle. You have a huge chip on your shoulder, and I'll be damned if I'm not the one to knock it off," and with that he left her there. She quickly finished her red bull, and Kay ordered another before they made their way back down to the dance floor.
"Alright, this one is for the Belle of the Ball. So let's see what you can do!" Pete said, seamlessly leaping into David Bowie's "Let's Dance". Belle laughed as Kay grabbed her hands. Belle saw someone come up behind Kay and she turned to see a guy about her height with his hands on Kays hips. On a regular night she would have said something, but instead she just swayed her body to the beat and finished the rest of her drink before sitting it down. Kay excused herself from the dance floor again and grabbed another drink in the VIP section.
"What number is that?" Belle asked as Kay began to sip it.
"Who's counting?" Kay said with a laugh. Belle gave her a look. "Listen, I never get to have fun. Just let me do my thing, please?" She egged and Belle thought about it for a moment before agreeing.
Belle sat at the bar and ordered a water while she watched Kay do a shot with the bartender. This was quickly getting boring.
Kay finished her third and ordered another.
"Alright, I'm spent. I'm gonna turn the tables back over to Derek, so you guys have a great night!" Pete's voice boomed, and he made his way over to the couch again.
"Alright, let's thank our guest DJ for his hot 80's grooves. Now, let's bring it back to date, with this..."
Kay smiled widely as the intro to the Kelis's "Bossy" came over the PA system. She grabbed Belle and walked to the back corner where Pete was sitting with Joe and a couple of people she had never meant before. Her cheeks were flushed from the alcohol and she was quickly loosing her inhibitions.
Belle took a seat on the chair next to the guys and Kay sat her drink down and grabbed Joe's hand. He looked up at her with a questioning face.
"Dance with me!" She demanded. He held his hands up in protest. "Can't. I have the puppy," Joe said, motioning to Hemingway who was in his lap.
She looked over to Pete and he shook his head and mouthed 'no'. She let an evil grin come over her face as she stood in front of him.
"Pete, dance with me," She demanded. He again shook his head with a laugh. "I don't dance," He told her truthfully.
"Alright.." She looked like she was going to give up but instead she stood with her legs shoulder length apart facing him and moving her hips to the beat.
"Stand up," She ordered. Again he refused. She raised her right leg and let it rest to the left of his legs and bent over him so her face was close to his ear. "Peter, I'm going to dance with or without you. But this will be less painful for you if you agree now," Pete felt her breath on his neck and shivered. Belle looked over a felt a pang of...jealousy? No, no...
Kay smiled devilishly and pulled back from him and turned around, placing her hands on both of his knees, dropping down to let him admire her completely before standing up quickly and turning around. She continued to tease him, moving her body to the beat and running her hands down the length of her body. She knew what she was doing to him, watching his eyes as they traveled down the length of her body.
Belle tried to keep her eyes on anything but the scene happening next to her. She should have pulled Kay off of him and yelled at her, she should have stopped Kay about three drinks ago...
When Kay knew the end of the song was coming she sat on his lap, facing Belle whose mouth was about touching the floor. She had her hands on his knees as she sat in his lap and using her hands as leverage to grind against him. Pete grabbed her hips to stop her. He was definitely aware of what she was doing to him, but with one more movement she would be fully aware of it as well. She simply grabbed his hands and led them down the length of her thigh and up. When the last note of the song played, she leaned back and put her head on Pete's shoulder.
"How was it for you?" She asked with a giggle. Belle grabbed her purse and stood up, contemplating leaving but realizing her only ride home had just gotten a lap dance.
"So, no more stripper watching for Kay. She's taking too many notes," Joe said with a nervous laugh, grabbing Kays arm and pulling her off of Petes lap. Pete quickly stood up and grabbed Hemingway. "I think we should go," He said, glancing over to Belle and noticing her gaze was on the floor.
Kay giggled and grabbed her cup off the table, but Belle intercepted it. "I think you're done," Belle said slowly. Kay pouted her lip and crossed her arms over her chest before sitting back in the seat.
"C'mon, get up," Joe said, getting up and offering his hand to Kay. She just looked up at him and shrugged her shoulders. Kay grabbed her purse and followed them out of the club through the back doors.
Authors Note: this one to moocow, phantom, and taradise for the reviews. i've had 30 reads in the past 14 hours. that's amazing, seriously. that number makes me feel like i'm doing something right.
i have something up my sleeve for the next one, kind of like a magician but only not because i don't have any powers.