It was nearly 2 am. We’d just finished with our last set but I wasn’t tired. Zachary was so sweet to walk with me back to my place instead of taking a cab. My insides were like whizzing butterflies. I was DYING to know what that producer thought about our band but Grandpa had left with her early and texted me that we’d know more later. That wasn’t a good sign.
“What’s wrong?” Zachary’s low voice rumbled in the quiet morning.
I shook my head and covered my mouth. “What if she hated us, Zachary? We’ll be doomed. This is our only shot at getting a label. If Dusty Blair says we’re no good, who would want her leftovers?”
He stopped and held me close, kissing my forehead. “It’s not something you should worry about, Chey. Come on. I’ll give you a nice back rub when we get to your room.”
I snuggled into his chest. I loved having him with me. He knew just how to settle my nerves.
My mind raced through the night, waking me. But then having Zachary there would help me get back to sleep.
Why couldn’t I just pack him in my suitcase and take him with me wherever I went? I clung to times like this with him by my side. It was pure heaven.
The following morning, my nerves were fresh and fried. I paced around like a caged animal. Zachary went out and got us some coffee with tons of whipped cream. My favorite. He thought of everything.
He looked a bit nervous, hesitating.
I cocked my head. “What’s wrong?”
Swallowing, he said, “I…I was thinking, Chey. If this producer thing doesn’t work out, would you consider leaving the band and coming with me to Bridgeport? You know that city has the best theaters in the country. You could work as an actress. And in time, it could lead to what you’ve always dreamed of–maybe even a movie deal.”
I sipped the delicious carmel coffee. My heart wanted to instantly say yes but…I mean…I just started with the band and I loved it. It was a part of who I was now. Of course, he was right. My dream of becoming an actress still loomed over me. I DID want to do that but theater acting and commercial acting were two different things. And the odds of getting a movie break working in Bridgeport were basically zero. Zachary didn’t understand.
“Zachary…” I started. “I…”
He stopped me. “Look, I’m not saying you need to give me an answer right now but let’s give it until I start football in the fall. Okay? If things aren’t going as well as you thought, would you consider it? For me?”
If I was serious about us, I had to consider quitting the band. I knew that deep down but pushed those thoughts out simply because I wanted everything. Couldn’t I be a part of the band for a few years and have a long distance relationship? Many couples did that for years.
But it was obvious Zachary didn’t think the same way I did. I guessed I didn’t have to promise anything now. And he was right. Maybe in a few months I’d feel differently. “Okay…I’ll think about it.”
He smiled breathing out. “I know you won’t regret it.”
Just then, Mateo and the others burst into the room.
“Where’s my favorite singer?” Mateo cried.
My stomach dropped. “What’s going on?”
Angelo grinned. “Dusty Blair called. She wants to make a deal.”
Whooping, Mateo yelled, “Yeah, baby!”
I couldn’t believe it! Racing up to my band mates, we all gave each other a group hug.
This was it! Our dream was coming true!
I couldn’t believe it!
I should have been happy for her. Hell, Mateo wasted no time in acting as if I didn’t exist, monoplizing Cheyenne. But I guessed I couldn’t blame him. I’d probably do the same thing in his position.
She was so giddy at what the news meant for the band.
It wasn’t lost on Angelo. He hated me since I’d tried to hit on his girlfriend earlier in the year. Heck, how was I supposed to know she was attached? And that was way before Cheyenne.
Being the dutiful boyfriend, I snapped some pictures of the band celebrating.
And before I knew it, the weekend was gone and it was time for me to go. I had meetings with my team and finals were coming up. I couldn’t believe I’d be graduating soon then off to Bridgeport for training.
I gathered her hands in mine. “Let me know what happens with that producer.”
She nodded, not saying anything. I saw tears in her eyes. We both knew we wouldn’t see each other for months. Would our relationship just fade away?
“I don’t want you to go,” she whispered.
“I’ll call you when I get home.” This sucked.
I hated saying goodbye to Zachary. We’d have the most amazing time together whenever he visited. It was like time was on fast forward when he was here. It wasn’t fair!
And then poof. He was gone.
But my love life had to take a backseat to my job.
Before I knew what was happening, the guys and I were in an uber going to the famous Simy Fire building. It was shaped like a guitar. I thought that was so cool!
I had a knot in my throat and my whole body was shaking just being in front of Dusty Blair. She exuded fame. She’d produced some of the all time greatest rock legends!
“Well, look at what the cat drug in.” She tutted. “I expect you’ve already signed your contracts then?”
We nodded looking at each other awkwardly not knowing what her words meant. Cat drug in? Like…was she dissing us or did she want to produce our music?
She dropped her hands on her desk dramatically. “Listen, I’ll give it to you kids straight. My PA will take you to hair and makeup then you’ll do a modeling session for all the PR we’re going to give you. Everything’s gotta change. All your hair has to match. And good God, we’re going to give you a hair weave, Mateo, ridding us of that god awful mohawk. I mean what is this? The 90’s?”
Mateo’s eyes widen then he scowled. I honestly had to stifle a laugh. She did have a point. It did look a bit on the nose for a black rock band.
Then her eyes locked on me. “Because you have a beautiful goddess in your midst, we’ll be highlighting her and changing your group’s name to Edge of Eden–a play on the sexuality of this goddess. You’re quite lucky to have her, boys. Most rock bands are men only. That will help the hype.”
“What’s wrong with BLITZED?” Mateo grumbled.
He was so cute. He’d come up with the name himself and with her attacking his hair, I could tell his pride was a little hurt.
She plopped her boots on her desk. “It sucks. We’re elevating you, dear boy. If you don’t like it, the door is always available for you to leave. Do you wish to leave?”
Of course, Mateo backed down. And before we could say DREAMS! YES! we were in front of a green screen, all primped up and trying to look right for the camera.
It was hardest for Mateo.
He was always goofing off, doing the opposite of what the frustrated photographer asked of us. At one point Angelo couldn’t help it but he laughed.
Mateo was being ridiculous.
After about four hours and four thousand pictures later, we finally got a few pictures that worked.