Nichole goes to lunch with Tyler and /most/ of Hello Grace.
I’m really sorry that it took me sooo long to update :’0[ and this is kind of a short chapter…
I’ve been having a hard time trying to get everything organized, so it’s taking me a while. (Plus the obvious excuse of school, school, school. Although, I’ve been doing a wonderful job of procrastinating and stressing myself out with that :P)
anyways, so this is the second installment. Enjoy and review PLEASE!
Humongous thanks goes to…
xxpatdxx (for giving me that extra nudge ;-])
Thanks so much for reviewing!!! I love you guys! :D
~Around three years prior to previous chapter (circa 2004)~
“Yo, Nick! We just signed this awesome band! You’ve got to listen to them!” My brother, Tyler, yelled as he barreled through the door.
“Yeah, sure. Who are they?” I asked. I was used to my brother being crazy dramatic about the bands that hired him to be their publicist. He had always been passionate about music growing up; always shoving CD’s at me since I was a little kid. I could never pass up his judgment on a band.
“ Hello Grace . They’re awesome. I think they’re just what the record label needs. They’re going to go far.” He rambled, finally throwing a CD at me. I popped it into my lime green boom box that was sitting on my bedroom floor.
“Wow, they are good.” I said, bopping my head along to the first track. “But, as their publicist, you do know that you’re supposed to be getting their music out to the masses, not just your little sister, right?”
“Ha. Ha.” He replied. I looked at the CD case that was in my hands. It was humble for being their first record. A picture of the band was placed on the front, along with “Hello Grace” in shiny electric blue letters at the bottom. I glanced over the five boys that adorned the cover; stopping at whom I could only think was the lead singer, considering he was in the middle of the five and closest to the camera. Wow, he’s hot. I thought as I ran my finger over his face.
“How old are these guys?” I asked him casually.
“They’re all about your age. The lead singer, there,” he replied, pointing to the picture of the guy who my finger had just been assaulting, “is eighteen. The rest are seventeen, I think. Pretty young.”
“Cool. You think I could meet ‘em?” I asked hopefully.
“You a fan already?” he beamed, finally catching on to the small crush I had developed.
“I suppose.” I answered nonchalantly.
“Yeah, you can come right now. I was just fixing to meet with them for lunch. I came here to change… oh yeah.” He hurried out of my room, remembering why he had come home in the first place. Even though he’s 24, my brother still lives at home. We both do, actually. Since I’m only seventeen and just about to graduate from high school in May, it’s not as pathetic that I still live with our parents.
“Hurry up! Hurry up!” he said, rushing back into my room. He had changed into a pale-yellow button down shirt and dark wash jeans. “We’re gonna be late!”
“Okay, fine. Get out of my room and I might be able to change!” I laughed at him as he bolted back down the stairs. I walked over to my closet and looked at my clothing options. Great I thought sarcastically to myself. I had nothing to wear. And I’m not one of those girls who just say that when they have a closet full of outfits, either. I literally have nothing to wear. Just a few jeans and assorted band tee shirts (most of them I’ve gotten from my brother) make up my wardrobe. Money is a little tight, but it doesn’t really have anything to do with that; I just HATE shopping. I’m such a tomboy… and now I’m paying for it.
I grabbed a light green skirt (one of the only ones I own) and threw it on, while rummaging to find a suitable top. I had to settle with a white tank top. Plain, but it was the best I could do with my lack of fashion sense.
“Let’s go! Let’s go! Let’s go!” Tyler ran past my door again, stopping only a second to bang it down, before running out to the car. I grabbed my purse and sunglasses and followed him outside, a slight less rambunctiously. I was greeted by a the bright sun and thick Californian heat, despite it being the first of December. Locking the door, and jumping into the car that Tyler was already gunning, we sped off.
“There they are.” Tyler said, pointing to a group of familiar faces sitting around a circular table in the corner of the chilly lunch bistro. I followed him over to the boys who were laughing and joking about something that had just happened.
“Hey Tyler!” One of them said, rising and shaking my brother’s hand.
“Hey man!” He greeted him, pulling the handshake into a hug. “Nicky, this is Guy.”
“Hi!” I said flashing a smile at him. His sandy blonde hair was cut into a short Mohawk strip and he was dressed in a dark-green polo with faded loose jeans and Vans sneakers.
“Hello there!” he smiled back, looking me up and down. Was he flirting with me?!
“So… You’re name is really Guy?” I asked, and then mentally kicked myself.
“Uh… yeah. I’m a guy named Guy. I know it’s weird,” He answered somewhat offended, but still smiling.
“Sorry, I didn’t mean… uh… I’m Nichole, Tyler’s sister,” I stammered, sticking my hand out at him.
“No worries. It’s nice to meet you.” He said beaming once again and shaking my hand forcefully. Gosh, he’s strong. After I finally managed to free my hand, he continued to make introductions. “So… I’m Guy Brannon. This is Landon Grey.” He said motioning to his left.
“Hi.” Landon mumbled, smiling up at me. I looked down at the boy with natural jet-black hair that contrasted his rather pale complexion. He was a little on the thin side, which was exaggerated by the tight band tee and black skinny jeans he was wearing (along with a pair of black Converses that had been heavily scribbled on with a Sharpie). The look worked for him.
“Hey,” I answered him, lightly shaking his hand.
“That’s Andrew Curnutt,” Guy continued going clockwise around the table.
“Just Drew.” He said quickly. I chuckled, looking at the boy who must have had the softest hair in the world. His light blonde, almost platinum, locks reached his shoulders in soft wisps that reminded me (for some odd reason) of duckling feathers. He was wearing a simple but flattering burgundy colored tee shirt along with a pair of relaxed dark-wash blue jeans.
“ Drew Curnutt, then,” Guy rolled his eyes.
“And saving the best for last…” the last member present chimed in, “I’m Corey Rhodes.” I looked at the boy who had light mocha skin and multi-colored brown dreadlock twists. I reached over the table to the incredibly bright boy and shook his hand.
“Good to meet you guys,” I gave a small wave to the table, and then sat down between Guy and Landon. “So… there’s only four of you here, but I saw five on your album cover,” I stated casually, sipping a glass of water that was at my place on the table. I knew exactly whose face I didn’t see: the one whose face I wanted to see most.
“Yeah, Jeremy couldn’t make it.” Said Guy apologetically towards Tyler on his right. Darn.
“That’s fine,” Tyler said, looking at me slyly, “Nicky just has a little crush…”
“Shut up. I do NOT!” I said rather unconvincingly, all the while shooting Tyler death glares. I was saved from the awkward silence as the waitress came to collect our orders.
Once our food came, the boys started talking some mumbo jumbo music industry jargon. Recording, touring… shows… I poked at my salad and remembered to smile, laugh and nod whenever anyone else did, but I was otherwise zoned out.
“Nicky?” I snapped out of my daydream about Jeremy.
“Wha?” I looked around the table as everyone stared at me.
“The Christmas party for the label,” Tyler stated.
“Oh, yeah.” I nodded. What the heck is he talking about?
“So?” Guy turned to me expectantly.
“Um… what about it?” I asked sheepishly.
“Were you not listening to anything that we’ve been saying?!” Tyler groaned at me.
“Um… no?” I looked around the table, trying to figure out what the conversation had been about.
“Are you coming?” Landon half-whispered in my ear, cluing me in.
“Oh! Sure!” I beamed. I had never been invited to anything that had to do with the label. And now, twice in one day… I’m on a roll. “Wait, when is it?” I asked, remembering my midterm exams.
“December 20,” Tyler groaned, frustrated at having to repeat all the details of their previous conversation.
“Oh yeah, I can come. Exams are over by then.”
“Exams?” Guy questioned.
“Yeah, I’m a senior this year, and unfortunately I won’t be exempt.” I pouted.
“In college?” Corey this time.
“No, no. I’m still in high school. I’m seventeen.” I explained.
A collection of “So are we”’s came from the table.
"What school do you go to?" came from my left where Landon sat, glancing at me.
"Umm... I go to Oakland High School."
"Really?" This time came from my right, "So do we!"
"Wow. Small world!" I laughed looking around the table at the happily surpised faces.
"It is a pretty big school, but still, I wonder why we've never seen you..." Corey said, shaking his head.
"We'll definitely have to hang out some time," Drew verbalized, and everyone else nodded in agreement.
“Hey Nick, we’ve gotta head on now.” Tyler said, reaching around Guy’s back and poking me in the temple.
“Ouch! Was that really necessary?!” I snapped at him, jokingly.
“Well of course,” Tyler admitted with a flourish of his hands. He turned to the table “See you guys later.”
“And I guess I’ll see you all in December.” I added, rising from my seat.
“Great! We’ll see you then,” Guy smiled, as we were about to leave. “Oh, and Nicky!” I turned around. “Don’t worry, we’ll tell Jeremy all about you!” He winked.
“Thanks!” I said waving ‘bye’ again.
Wait... Is that a good thing?
Unfortunately, these next few chapters are going to be a lot of fluff and set-up for the meat of the story. Plus the fact that I’m trying to get everything straight in my head (way harder than it sounds) and I’m hitting blocks all over the place. Bear with me.
Another thing is that in my outline, Panic! Doesn’t really show up for a while. If you want me to, I can try and speed it up to when Nicky meets Ryan, and then just recap most of the earlier story in flashbacks. OR if you don’t mind reading a bunch of stuff about Hello Grace (which isn’t an actual band… yet. In case any of you were wondering) then I’ll just go on with how I originally planned it.
Once again, I LOVE reviews, opinions, comments and suggestions (well, duh. Who doesn’t?) so leave me tons and I’ll love you forever :D (Honesty is the best policy, so tell me what you REALLY think ;] If you have the guts to be critical, I’ll ADORE you!)