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Rihanna carries on behind me as I hop off the stage, and I stop by the curtains to grab a towel some scrawny looking girl throws at me. I stand dumbfounded for a moment as I watch Rihanna from the side and wipe the towel over my arms and chest so I can slip my shirt on without feeling drenched in water. How uncomfortable, plus these clothes are really nice and although they’ll be back at the store by tomorrow looking brand new with this fucked up life Ginger and I are living, I’d still like to look nice and rich for the rest of the day. Cherish it in case we really do die or figure this out one of these days.
I don’t know what it is exactly that gets my attention off of Rihanna… but I turn around to see Ginger being [i literally] lifted away by two large, burly security guards. If I wasn’t positive by my interactions with Ginger the past few days , I’d stand a minute longer and laugh. But alas, without even buttoning my shirt all the way up, I take off toward her. I have no idea what I’m going to do, or if I’m going to do anything at all. I’d love to stay and try to get some more Rihanna attention, but I can always come back tomorrow, because this is where she’ll be. I’m willing to bet Ginger’s feeling a tad bit annoyed anyways.
I catch up to her outside the bar, and the security guards part around me when they see me. I don’t know if they think I’m somehow part of the show, or what, but for a second I ponder turning around, but when Ginger comes into view I remember why I’ve followed her out. Although Rhianna is gorgeous in all her glory, she’s a celebrity. A fake one at that. Ginger is naturally gorgeous, and she wouldn’t believe me if I told her, but honestly I find Ginger more beautiful than Rihanna. The singer is just a sexy piece of ass. But all of this I’ll have to keep from Ginger, because she’d probably hit me if she heard it, or at least go on a tangent on how I’m a liar of some sort. She’s kind of funny… Can’t wait to learn more about her as a person, and I’m thinkin’ we’re going to have plenty of time.
“Ginger! Hey! Holy shit, did you see that? I wasn’t expecting that!” I break out in a laugh, the longer I stand here the more it sinks in how unbelievable the past few hours have been. She doesn’t look as amused as I am, and I flash her an apologetic look and quickly finishing buttoning up my shirt. I flip the keys to our beautiful car-of-the-day out of my pocket, and pick her up in my arms impulsively. “Okay I’m takin’ you on a real date this time, the dinner after your sister’s concert doesn’t count,” I joke, plopping her down in the front passenger seat. “I know just the place, too” I state, and peel out slowly from the curb, simultaneously leaning over to force Ginger to give me a kiss.
It takes a good forty-five minutes to get to the restaurant, but it’s a beautiful drive once out of the heaviness of the city, and the restaurant is nestled right on the coast. I’ve never been here before, but I know it’s one of the craziest, richest little ocean-front restaurants around LA. I’m sure this meal will be well over 500 bucks with a nice bottle of wine. But I can afford it, everything will be in its rightful place by morning. We don’t even park, and instead we stop in front of the place and their valet service parks the vehicle. I’m a bit sad to have even that little bit of time driving this car taken from me, but at the same time this is an experience I can’t miss out on going to such a fancy restaurant for the first time. We actually have to take an elevator, because it’s on the 50th floor, right on the top so we can get a beautiful view of the ocean. If my timing is correct, by the time we’re seated and have order our food, night will be falling over the horizon and we’ll get the beautiful night-view. Once were seated, I stare out the window for a moment, “God, this is fucking beautiful,” I half-whisper to her, smirking over the small table at her. “Better mood?” I prod.
Let me begin by saying that I do not in the least blame Alistair for this behavior. Thou shalt do what Rihanna wants. I've never had a tryst with a woman or anything, but would easily dabble in that if that's what Rihanna did so desire right now. So yes, if I were in his shoes I too would be getting my dick all up around Rihanna's business and then somehow pulling out only my finest moves. All of this, however, does not mean that I am not jealous over what's happening on this stage. Firstly, I am jealous because that's [i my] boy toy. Secondly, and most importantly, I am jealous that he gets to have this amazing moment with Rihanna of all people, and I am just some plebeian watching from backstage. But hey, this is what I signed up for I suppose.
So I do my best as figuring out the lights. I was only half paying attention to Alistair when he was dishing out advice on how to make myself blend in. In my defense, there was a hell of a lot of other more interesting stuff going on here even before it got all Magic Mike up in this place. Truly, Alistair was probably just responsible for the sexual awakening of at least a dozen rich tween girls. The whole time I debate pulling out my phone to capture this wildness, but decide that living in the moment is what's best. The phone would draw too much attention to me. And the whole idea of this living the same day over and over is just to live in the moment, right? Thinking about the past or the future just fucks with the head a little too much to manage.
He's nailing this things, almost literally, and I am very much not. The lights are a bit of a shitshow, and I've got someone coming up to me to question what the fuck I'm doing. If this was really my job, I'd be fired in a heartbeat. Instead, I'm recognized as someone who is very much not supposed to be back here. I try coming up with a million different excuses, and consider flashing my tits if that means I get to stay, but they're dragging me away already, accusing me of being some kind of Rihanna stalker. Her security people must see shit like this all the time. But damn, Rihanna is currently my nemesis because she is way hotter than I can even aspire to be and she's gone and given Alistair a taste of that.
Now's my time to go and make a scene of my own. Had security not gotten a hold of me, I probably still would've made a scene the second Alistair was back around. Because logically, I get this whole thing. But sometimes a girl just has to speak her mind and vent some stuff, and he would've just had to take the butt of that. But these dudes are much bigger than Alistair, and a lot less willing to put up with my nonsense. They might have a very easy time lifting me, but muzzling me is a different story. I keep screaming about how they're making a huge mistake, because I am actually someone very important. Somewhere along the way I transition into this weird half-British, half-Southern accent talking about the great fortune my family has amassed, and how they've just made enemies of some very important people. Some of that had to have at least caught Alistair's attention, signaling that it's time to bounce, and quickly, because I need to get off the premises as soon as possible.
I can feel Ginger’s worry from several feet away. The adrenaline that came from meeting Rihanna quickly fades with the realization that we’re going to feel that billion-dollar rage if this all doesn’t go as planned, and I have zero theatrical experience other than dancing with friends when I was younger. My friends hate going out with me because apparently my ‘moves’ steal all their girls away, but I joke that it’s just because I’m a cop and women have a sixth-sense when it comes to that kind of thing. I really don’t see how me making an ass of myself in front of Rihanna is in any way a good idea, though, so instead I just watch her from back stage. I hear someone call my name, and it looks like they're waiting for a que. When I look back on stage, I can tell she’s ready when she twirls and gives me a quick wink. The screaming from the young girls in the crowd is quickly drowned out by the intro to her show. I have no idea what she plans on doing or singing or how long this whole thing is going to be, but I put my hands in my pockets and enjoy the show.
[center [i That is, until the lights go out. ]]
It’s kind of funny though, and a bit fitting. The lights turn out, but Rihanna is smart enough to continue singing. So far, the crowd hasn’t caught on, because it’s song that begins slow and soft. I’m sure they think it’s all part of the show. The stage is pitch black, and everyone backstage is silently panicking. They’re hoarding around Ginger and I, and honestly I think we’re both as overwhelmed as we can possibly be. I grab Ginger’s arm and tug her toward me.
“Go back toward the lights and tell the guy back there to check and see if we blew something, and take his place. Have him show you how to use the manual spot light while he does that, it should work if he hooks it to battery power. It’ll maybe give us enough time to fix all of this nonsense. If not, let’s run for it. I don’t need Robert De Niro tryin’ to kill me after this fails.” I part ways with her, and turn my attention to the singer. She sounds convincing to most, but I can hear the concern in her voice. She finishes the song brilliantly, and runs toward the side of the stage. I meet her in the middle, it’s too black for anyone else to hear us.
“What the fuck is going on?” She demands.
“We have it under control. Just talk to the audience and improv! Hold ‘em off for us would you?” She looks suddenly much relaxed.
“How’s everybody doing!?” She asks the crowd, speaking into her microphone this time.
The crowd goes wild, and I turn to walk off the stage. I remember the spotlight though, and run back to whisper in her ear one more time. Unfortunately, my warning goes unfinished, because the spotlight turns on and I look out at the stage completely blinded for a moment by the light. My heart drops, and I have the urge to run. Thank god the woman beside me has lived through a few of these kind of awkward fails, and knows how to act natural. She grabs my arm and smirks at me, and doesn’t even have to say anything. The whole crowd is screaming, and I can’t figure out why. We’re standing on the stage with no music and a bright ass light shining down on us. How is this in the least bit exciting? Suddenly the music starts again, not a clue what song but a slower, more sensual song. Without a second to lose, she whips around and slowly drops down to the floor, and slowly stands while popping her ass. So… Rihanna is grinding on me right now. This… this is not real. Un-fucking-believable. The gorgeous, dark-skinned woman turns her head to sneak a peek at my expression, and smirks at me. I reply by raising a brow, and I smirk back.
Suddenly, we’re moving together in a slow and sensual manner with the song, and I take note that Rihanna is even more beautiful and even more talented than I ever believed. She’s singing, and dancing, and she’s so stunning at the same time. Sexy, too. This woman is a home run. A part of me feels bad as I steal a glance toward the spotlight and remember Ginger, but she can’t blame me for being awestruck. Or dancing with Rihanna. At this point, I can’t run off or it’ll look cheesy and unprofessional. So, apparently I’m dancing, according to this woman. She picks up quickly that I can actually dance, and when she knows that, there’s no turning back.
I hear a loud indescribable sound out of nowhere, and immediately after, all the lights flash on and illuminate the stage. There’s colorful lights, flashing lights, and lights dancing all around us. It’s almost a strike of luck as the song picks up it’s beat and the professional dancers begin making their inconspicuous entrances. That is exactly why they are professional and get paid to do this shit. I, on the other hand, am winging this whole thing and pretending like I’m in a club with just another girl. An instrumental part begins, and she somehow hands the mic to one of the dancers without me even noticing, and suddenly I have her waist and hand and we’re doing some sort of sensual tango with lots of grinding, twirling, lifting, and touching. Yeah, so maybe club-dancing isn’t the only kind of dance I know… I blame my mother for that. And my ex-girlfriend.
She’s pulling at my shirt, tugging off my button-up, and sliding her hands beneath it. The crowd is going even wilder, screaming louder and louder as she tugs and pulls, and practically begs in a graceful way while still dancing. Finally my shirt comes off, and here I am dripping sweat all over the stage as I feel her body pressing against mine. This is so bad, but so great. Oh, I’m so sorry Ginger! The song ends and I walk off the stage, grabbing my clothes as I go while the young girl’s whistle, holler, and basically cat-call me. Damn, kids nowadays are not shy at all. They do realize I am ten years older than them, if not more? After the intensity of being on stage with Rihanna settles, I find myself feeling kind of guilty. Really, a mixture of shock, guilt, and excitement. Shit, I hope Ginger isn’t mad at me. I think we need to get out of here soon, or we’re going to get caught… although, even if we did, the way Rihanna was biting that lip, I don’t think she’d care…
Just a couple of minutes ago, I was getting comfortable with the idea of spending eternity caught in this time loop with Alistair. The prospect wasn't looking too shabby. In fact I was pretty content with just him in the picture. But hell, things are really looking up after De Niro. Alistair's great and all, but he can't exactly compete with a world class actor. Not to say that I'd fuck Robert De Niro .
If there's one person I'd definitely ditch Alistair for, it's Rihanna. There she is in the flesh too. Alistair takes the words right out of my mouth. I let out some mix of a gasp and a giggle, thinking 'you and me both, buddy.' Without any doubt, I would get myself involved in some kind of lesbian tryst with Rihanna. So I can't be mad at Alistair for thinking about what's under that bodysuit.
The moment she turns to talk to that dancer is just enough time to recover from my state of total shock. I'd be totally convinced this is a dream if I hadn't already pinched myself so many times after recent events. "You look perfect," I give my nod of approval, trying not to get caught up in flattering her. After all, she thinks we're here to do a job? It's unclear what exactly that job is, but it seems to be the same work Robert thought we're supposed to be doing. "So let's get this show on the road?" I suggest. I can't imagine someone like Rihanna is thrilled to be performing for a bunch of tweens, but she's probably getting paid well to do it. Just like Joe and Danielle, or whoever the hell everyone thinks Alistair and I are.
Honestly, I am the one who needs to get this show on the road. If we don't go into action too, I will spend all day standing here in awe of Rihanna's presence, and I don't think anyone else wants that. It would also be a dead giveaway that we totally don't belong among these people . But professionalism has got to come first and foremost if we're going to hold onto this gig.
What I didn't take into account is that I don't know a damn thing about how to run one of these performances, and I'm making the pretty safe assumption that Alistair doesn't either. High school theater isn't even in my background, so we are royally fucked. "Oh my god," I mouth to Alistair when Rihanna has gone out the door towards the stage. I'm pretty sure the rest of my face reads exactly who screwed we are right now. But we can't disappoint both Rihanna and Robert De Niro all in one go. They'd never forgive me, and I'd never forgive me too.
A wall of young, angst-filled teenagers greets me as I walk in with Ginger. They give Ginger the once-over before their eyes plant on me. Simultaneously, the crowd erupts in strange childlike squeals, and somehow the mass floats towards us. My arm now reaches around Ginger's waist, pulling her close in a unintentional protective gesture. We both spend a few prolonged moments eyeing the crowd, and I almost cringe at how they're all dressed. Most of them look like they could be anywhere between fourteen years old and twenty-two. When I was younger, most girls my age weren't allowed to wear make-up, and we all went through a strange, nerdy phase--us boys included. They wore mismatched outfits and blue eye-shadows, and we wore awkward cut-off t's and sneakers, with a side of zits, of course. If it weren't for Ginger's curves, and a mature face, some of these girls could pass for her age. Bold, black, and pointed eyes, heavy concealer, and dark lipsticks. Some even have glitter, and sparkly dresses, or skin-tight black cocktail dresses-can't believe their mother let's them dress like that--I'd ground my daughter for life.. It's increasingly wierding me out as they stare, and a shiver runs down my back; shit, if I were to have a few beers, and they were to illegally come into a club with a fake ID, I'd probably hit on them. That's fucking perverted and creepy, girls should look their damn age.
I can't hear who it is speaking to Ginger, the only signal there's someone next to her the quick movement I see in my peripheral vision. I step forward and pivot towards her further to find someone standing there I didn't think I'd ever--in a million years--get to meet. My chest tightens for a moment, and I suddenly have the urge to scream like a little girl. I don't keep up with celebrities, but if you don't know who Robert De Niro is then we can't be friends.I attempt to keep my cool, though, and half-heartedly cough while trying not to stare too intently at him. Another reason why I love Ginger, seeing her so shook from the meeting. He's a true celebrity, old-school and respectable, not fake, pretentious, and sorely overplayed. I can't really hear what De Niro said to Ginger because of the loud music, but after he walks away--disappointingly so --I see her lips moving, and I lean in, lowering my ear to her to help. It's obnoxiously loud in here, and it feels like there are way too many bodies cramped in this small space. I nod to her vigorously when she invites me toward the back, assuming that has something to do with what De Niro was chatting with her about.
I let go of Ginger's waist and take her by the hand instead, background noise of gasps and squeals all around us as I push through the crowd and it starts to part like the Red Sea. When we make it to is the stage, I let Ginger guide us to the back. I have no idea what to expect, and Ginger probably doesn't either. Which is why when we reach backstage and start passing porn-star hot dancers , I become a bit anxious. My best guess is Justin Bieber or some other childish, queer singer or group. That's why when I see a tall, chocolate woman standing ahead of us with long, silky hair up in a high-pony, and a perfect looking ass I furrow my brows. I'm wracking my brain to figure out who it could be when she pivots around. In a tight black leotard with transparent long-sleeves, knee-high socks, and six-inch heels to add to her already long, toned legs, I almost faint. Rhianna. This--this is--this is fucking Rhianna. What. The. Fuck. No. Fucking. Way.
I practically trip over myself when I see her, but once again attempt to act cool, calm, and collected. Two damn celebrities in a night. Screw what I said before, Rhianna's music may not be exactly my genre, but she's hot.. She smiles my way, and I give her a reassuring smirk back. "I've been waiting for you guys! I heard Danielle and Joe were sick as hell, and the company was sending replacements," she paused to turn and whisper something to the young dancer she was previously talking to before turning back. "So, how do I look? Ready?" I raise my brows unintentionally, and suck in air. Man, if I didn't know any better I'd think she was asking me personally. Especially with the way she's biting her lip and raising her brows...
"Sexy," I blurt out, and quickly lean my head back and try to calmly look around the room. Shit... Sorry, Ginger...
If we were British, I'd say that Alistair is dressed smart as hell. I think we've managed this whole fashionable but effortless thing well, and that we definitely look like the walking money we actually aren't. Based on the other cars parked here, we're fitting in pretty well so far. "More than ready," I answer Alistair. We're greeted at the door by a huge guy in all black with an earpiece. Right, of course not just anyone can waltz on in here. He looks both of us over, and seem to decide we're the kind of people who should be here. "You here for the party?"
It's a little early for a party, but hell if there's a party happening here, all the better. "Yeah, but I forgot our invitation. I hope that won't be a problem?" I ask, trying to make my voice as sultry as possible, assuming that rich girls probably talk like that.
"Uh huh, no problem. It's through the doors in the back," he instructs us, letting us into the building.
The first room is mostly empty, save for a couple of guys who look like they play golf for a living, either professionally or the way retired grandpas do. I'm sure there's really a difference between those two things anyhow. The music blasting from the back room already sounds more interesting than hanging out at the bar with some golf dudes.
Through those doors is a surprise, though maybe not a good one. It's full of twelve year olds, mostly girls, and what appears to be some of their parents. My initial suspicion is that Justin Bieber is located somewhere on the premises, but I don't get to look around for too long before a hand is wrapped around my shoulder.
Holy. Fucking. Shit. Robert De Niro's arm is currently around me. I repeat, I am in serious contact with Robert De Niro. "Savannah's been waiting for twenty minutes now. Let's make sure my granddaughter has the best birthday possible, how about you go check out backstage and see what's happening?" he says close to my ear in a way that is so Godfather-esque I nearly faint, all through a huge smile.
In the meantime, Alistair is catching quite a bit of attention from tweenage girls. Some of them are boldly staring him down, others keep trying to discreetly look at him every couple of seconds while whispering like there is some truly juicy gossip to discuss about him. When good old Robert is out of earshoot, all I can get out is "oh my god," under my breath at first. I think the man thinks I'm some kind of event coordinator, since I clearly don't fit in with the crowd here. And by the looks of it, the girls here think Alistair is actually someone famous. "Well shit, I think I've got to go backstage and figure out what the fuck is going on. You wanna come?" I ask, already hurrying on my way. I'm afraid if Alistair doesn't come with me he might just get engulfed by a swarm of starstruck kids.
Although shopping with girls is literally something I never do, this is oddly exciting. With all these expensive shops and strange looks from all the higher-class customers, and the women working at every single store staring us down. They’re almost condescending with their attitude, until we pay for our things and leave. They seem almost shocked we can afford the hundreds of dollars we’re spending. Our final looks are rather believable in my opinion, and she looks more than stunning in that shining, slimming dress. Even better than the one I slid off the other night, but that’ll have to wait until later. We have a nice car to borrow for the day, and some celebrities to fuck with.
An unforgiving show at the upper-class dealership leaves us with a gorgeous maroon Lamborghini. I would have picked something different, but it’s a nice car, and of course that’s what Ginger suggested. We took our time, having fun look at the cars while the salesman walked us around and treated us like royalty. Is this how the upper-class gets treated? As much as I hate them, there’s definitely starting to be some perks in this change in society. He doesn’t even ask us questions, other than asking for a number to reach us at. Do they just hand these out to people? Man, thugs would love to know this. They’d have to look the part, and act like it, too. A part I think they’ll pale to in comparison to the glorious acting skills of Ginger. She’s got him wrapped around her finger with her lies, so graceful and easy she is at it, I’d be scared of her if I didn’t know her so well.
Once we're in the car, I turn to her with a smirk, revving the engine before I stomp on the gas and I feel myself melting into the seat. Holy fucking Christ, I could die now and be happy! I take some much needed detours enjoying the ride, and the looks, while racing fellow cars on the road before finally arriving at this so called washed-up celebrity bar. I’m interested to see who we’ll meet, but to be honest I probably won’t know any of them. I’m not good with names, and I’ve never followed the whole celebrity business. I park on the curb, surrounded by cars that are equally pleasing to my car, and I’m just content the car fits in. I just cross my fingers that we fit in. I walk around and open the door for Ginger before she can hop out, and let her loop her arm in mine as we stride inside. I look over at her just before we walk inside, though, reveling in this feeling of… being rich… “Ready to get into some trouble?”
At some point, I'm sure that every girl has dreamed of this moment. Who doesn't want to blow half of their savings on some banging clothes every once and awhile? Usually I'm a bit more practical of a person, but practicality went completely out the door the second Alistair pointed out that we are stuck in time. Adding to my Barbie-esque fantasy of being able to dress myself in whatever I please is the living, breathing Ken doll by my side in all of this. Hey now, hey now, this is what dreams are made of. Being here forever doesn't seem so bad, honestly.
"I'll be damned if I don't look like an it-girl," I tell Alistair with a determined grin, looping my arm in his as we head off to do some shopping. The poor guy has to zip me into more than a dozen dresses before I finally make up my mind on a silky blue number. Then there's the jewelry, and the shoes, and the purse, and the sunglasses, and the hair that should be done but frankly we don't have the time for that, so a bit tousled and unkempt is just going to have to do for the time being. I can't look like I'm trying too hard.
Dressing up as a guy is admittedly harder. There's a lot less options, and the line between casually and formal seems a lot harder to walk. Still, what he settles on looks amazing. "Now all we need is a Lambo and we'll fit in perfectly," I tell him after a kiss of approval. "For real though, time to go test out one hell of a car before we get ourselves into any celebrity cults," I add, because I am pretty serious about having the right ride to look the part. We might as well go as all out as we please. The accountant in me has a disgusting amount of savings anyhow, so money isn't as much of an issue as it should be.
To be honest this is making my moral compass spin in every direction, but if what I believe is going on, then fuck my moral compass. I’ll throw it on the ground and stomp on it… Well, maybe not step on it yet, since were both a little unsure at the moment, but sometimes you got to live a little… especially considering the crazy yet plausible idea that we are already dead and this is some sort of heaven or hell, or maybe even something in between.
I raise my glass to her and finish the last sip of it. “That sounds like a good time to me,” I slide the empty glass across the bar to the bartender who swiftly catches it, and I reach in my pocket. After pulling out a few wads, I slap a twenty down. I can see the look on Ginger’s face, even from my peripheral. I cock a brow, taking a few steps away from the bar before giving at explanation. “Got to start somewhere—can’t pretend were rich and make people believe it unless we believe it ourselves.”
There’s a few nice, high-end places in this area, but I’m thinking of something a little more classier and a little more high-end. I grab us a cab and quickly duck into the first one that pulls up, a gentle hold on Ginger’s wrist as I slides inside. She seems a bit baffled by all of this, but I leave her in anticipation by simply saying, “I hope you’ve got some money saved, you’re going to need it.”
Fifteen minutes pass before we’re able to step back onto the gravel. I wonder if she’ll even recognize this area—I do, but that’s because as an LAPD detective, I’ve got to know the city from the inside out, like the back of my hand—and boy do I. The area downtown we’re at is the richest, poshest, beautifully kept area in all of Los Angela’s. It’s annoyingly pretentious, and the aura of the place makes me feel almost stuffy. We obviously don’t fit in, but we’re about to.
Alistair the cop brings up breaking the rules. Alistair the cop is strongly considering breaking the law, because why the hell not. If we're going to be stuck here, we must as well bring our own little anarchy. I can't help but grin at him. I can really never help but grin at him, but this time it's more of a childish excitement and less of some weird star-struck drooling.
"I've always wanted to free all the animals in the zoo..." What hits me then is that lions and tigers and bears are totally capable of mauling and eating people, and we don't really know what happens if someone dies here. Are they gone forever? Do they come back tomorrow morning? Will there even be a tomorrow morning? Shit, what happens if one of us dies here? We can't be getting too dangerous. "But maybe let's not do that."
What comes to mind next is robbing a bank, but maybe let's not do that either. We probably shouldn't go pushing our luck too much until we understand what the fuck is going on here. Or at least have had more time to grasp the patterns. Eventually we're totally fucking doing it though. Who doesn't want to be Bonnie and Clyde?
"So, there's this really ritzy like kind of country-club kind of super rich people hangout place by the water where all of these washed up celebrities and former rich kids of Beverley Hills hang out, along with a couple of actual famous people during the day. And I am convinced that there is some Illuminati business going on there. I propose that we blow all of our money so we can look the part, pretend to be people who are relevant in that kind of society, and see what it's like to live like that while we can. I bet we could be pretty convincing."
I follow Ginger blindly, trusting in her so deeply it almost scares me. I assume it has something to do with this whole situation, because I am usually not one so quick to trust. In fact, I don’t open up much either. People tend to think I do, since I’m very open about things I’ve done, but unbeknownst to them I leave out the most important, painful, scarring memories I have, the ones that have made me who I am today. They don’t know me, they know the person they think I am, the person I make them believe I am. But see, Ginger is different.
We take a seat at the bar, empty aside from a few scraggly looking men who I assume live here half-the-time, and live out on the street the other. Whitening hair, holey jackets, taped shoes, and missing teeth. Yes, the kind of man you grow up looking at and hoping your life doesn’t lead you to that very seat. The ones who turn up missing, who no one goes looking for. I’ve seen it all too many times, and the guilty conscious that used to eat at me no longer does. I am [i cruel].
I follow Ginger’s lead, ordering one of the more expensive drinks. After all, I have an infinite bank account. Well, basically a few thousand dollars to mess around with. Thank god for my tendency to save. I haven’t had to support anyone other than myself in years, though, so that might have played a role in that.
“Drinking at nine-in-the-morning? No,” I take a sip of my drink and smirk, “but I’m not complaining.” I stifle a laugh, and scratch the back of my neck. “So Ginger, if you wanted to do one thing in this town that you couldn’t before because of rules, laws, or money, what would that be?”
Paige's show! I forgot all about it until now. This probably has something to do with the fact that my sister's dabbling with theater has never been interesting nor a priority to me, but is really probably mostly due to the fact that things have been totally crazy as of late. Alistair is a total genius for even thinking of it. "Right, right, let me call her." I pull my phone right out and dial.
"Don't even tell me you aren't coming tonight Ginger. You have known about this for months and you'd literally be the worst sister in the world if you didn't come support me I swear I'm just going to have to disown you and will basically never speak to you again." Okay, well, that's a start. That's very Paige. You never know if she's totally kidding or not.
"Woah there Chiquita, I was just calling to make sure there were some extra tickets in case I wanted to bring people."
"People? What people? You have like five friends and no life sooo...?" Yup, she's definitely not kidding.
"Alright, I won't bring them then. Bye!" We'll cut that nice and short, since Paige isn't exactly the first person I want to be talking to right now.
That's about all the confirmation we needed. I kind of want to freak out still but it really is better channeling that energy into something positive. What he proposes for the day sounds pretty perfect to me and I can't help but smile at it. "Oh yes, I could use a drink right now." Who cares that right now I'd usually just be getting into work? Alistair and I have absolutely nothing to lose at this point.
Completely on impulse, I grab his hand on the way out. At least this day we have to keep reliving is absolutely gorgeous outside. It's a shame I'm never going to get tan though. I drag him to the only bar I know to be open on this hour, and have resolved to order the most expensive and ridiculous drinks they have, because why not? I sort of have an endless bank account to play with. Well, kind of.
"Never thought you'd end up like this now did you?" I joke, taking a sip from my first drink. After a couple more, you could say that I'm feeling a lot better about this whole situation.
Give it to Ginger to lighten the mood, and I’m more than willing to follow suit. I can be awfully contradicting, I love spontaneity, but I’ve been told that I’m far too serious in some situations, but in others, too childish. It’s as if Ginger has the ability to balance me out perfectly, like we can keep each other sane in this baffling world we’ve set foot into. For Ginger to believe me means I’m either making more sense than I feel like I’m making, and she’s noticed as well, or she’s just as crazy as I am. Either way, it looks like only time will tell this one.
“Oh yes, your sisters play! I almost forgot about that! Shit, that’s perfect, Ginger,” I pause for a moment, intently boring holes into her eyes, but in reality I’m just in a daze. Suddenly I snap my fingers, “How about you give her a call and ask her about her show, if she says it is tonight, that’s damn near one-hundred percent proof of this whole thing. If she has no idea about the play we went to a couple days ago, then I think… my crazy theory may not be as crazy as it seems…” The more I thought about it, the more things compiled, so I was pretty sure about my fucked up theory. But if her sister verifies that tonight is her first and only show, then I’ve got to be correct, and that… that makes the hair on my arms and the back of my neck stand on end. Goosebumps readily travel up my back and arms. “Shit, Ginger, it’s like were stuck in a goddamn dream or something. What the fuck?”
While she dials in her sister’s number, I whip out my phone and scroll through the contacts once again, verifying again that Ginger is no longer in my phone—I know it was in there, I watched her do it. I ignore the increasing messages in my inbox, knowing exactly who they’re from. They’re from my whole crew, wondering where the fuck I am. I try to be humble, but I know they’re lost without me. I avoid giving them a call, to avoid the guilt of not coming in today. I’m a little worried due to the fact that I know what they’re about to encounter, the man has a gun, but my team is strong and I’m not too worried. They’ll be fine, if they really need me, they’ll call. When Ginger hangs up the phone, I watch for her response. And, it’s exactly as I presumed it would be.
“Well shit, Ginger. I guess we’re off the hook for now? So, you know what? Fuck it, let’s go do something!” In the midst of all this negativity and confusion, I decide instantly that it’s my turn to help lighten the mood. “Let’s go have a fucking drink, play some pool, and sneak into that concert tonight. We’re gonna play it kind cool tonight, but if tomorrow ends up being today, than I think Disneyland is in order.” I snatch her hand, pulling her out of her spot and throwing down a few dollars on the table for the coffees. When I turn to look back at her, it’s like time itself slows. Everyone passes by me in a blur outside the coffee shop, but even the sound is muffled as I watch her follow me with blind trust. [i It looks like… you may be all I’ve got Ginger Trocker. I’m glad it’s you..]
If he's right about all of this, which I'm thinking more and more that he is, than nothing really matters. Who cares what we say or do anymore? The only thing that really matters is him and me, and I supposed to puts a lot of pressure on us actually having some sort of chemistry and being able to deal with each other in the long term. But who knows how long this is going to last anyways? We might as well have some fun with it.
I write down my number for him and ask him to do the same. Memorizing that should be easy for me, I'm good with numbers. Focusing on that might temporarily keep me sane.
"That sounds like a fair plan," I agree. It's a terrifying thought to think that I could wake up one day and walk to meet him and he might not be there. I don't want either of us to be utterly alone like that.
We probably shouldn't push our limits too far on this first day. At least until we know for sure that everything's just going to reset at the end of the day. But it's awfully tempting to do something wild, like it's some sort of rebellion against this circumstance. "Well, there's so much we could do today. We could drive up with Disneyland and raise absolute hell. We could sneak into this concert I couldn't get tickets to tonight. We could totally vandalize my asshole boss' house. I could heckle my sister throughout her entire play. We could blow all of our savings on ridiculously expensive things just for the day. That luxury sports car you've always wanted, that could be yours. I could dress in ridiculously expensive clothes and look ridiculously expensive and pretend to be absolutely rich," I ramble off, keeping my tone almost a little seductive. I know Alistair isn't necessarily a good boy, but he is a cop nonetheless. It probably goes against his instincts to break the rules.
After a few moments of silence to let it all sink in for the both of us, I take firm grasp of her hand and tug her out of the ally and back onto the sidewalk. I weave through the streams of people, holding her hand tightly, and making sure to block her from any and all shoving. Finally I see a somewhat quiet looking café, and open the door for her to come inside. I make sure that we sit in a quiet corner farthest from anyone. Technically it doesn’t matter, but I’d rather not have to deal with the judgmental stares.
“Okay, so I feel like we should set up some sort of plan… I mean, I don’t even know your number and I doubt you’re still in my phone,” I quickly check my contact list, and no ‘Ginger’ with a smiley face pops up. I lay my phone down, and urge her to check her contact list as well to prove I didn’t delete it for show. When she looks up at me, I know instantly what her answer is. “I haven’t deleted your number, as I doubt you have either, so this only backs up my theory… as ridiculous as it seems…” It so weird, even pondering subjects like this. I actually feel like a crazy person, like the guy I am usually chasing after to put in cuffs is me right now. Delusional and out of my mind.
I slide a pen out of my front jacket pocket, pointing at a napkin. “Write down your number, I’m going to memorize it so I can call you if something unusual happens—which I doubt. Also, let’s meet here every morning. If anything every happens or we can’t get a hold of each other, lets come here, okay?” Just then, someone walks up and pours us both a cup of coffee, after asking of course. I am delighted to have it, drinking it black. I’m not typically a coffee person, but I think I’m about to become one. “Anything you want to add? Anything you want to do on this free day?”
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