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Authors: Meghan Quinn

Fame (9 page)

BOOK: Fame
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“Sometimes, I really just want to jam my foot in your mouth,” Grey said, as he took a gulp of his lemonade.
 

“Nah, you don’t want to do that, you’re more of an ass man.”

“Are you just here to irritate me?” Grey asked.
 

“No, we need you, man,” Cruz said, growing serious. “The Grammys are in a week, and we want to show up as a band. It’s the first time we’ve been nominated, and we need to soak up every moment of it. It’s something to be proud of.”

Even though it felt like his life was falling fast down a dark abyss, when his mom told him Shattered Souls was nominated for two Grammys, Grey nearly lost it with excitement. The one thing he wanted at that moment was to be with his boys celebrating, but instead, they were all doing their own things, going their own ways.
 

Grey nodded and said, “Is everyone going to be there?”

Cruz paused as Grey saw slight panic cross Cruz’s features, an emotion he didn’t show very often, which surprised Grey. Most of the time, Cruz was calm and collected, but Grey could sense the nervousness in his answer.
 

“We can’t find Rook anywhere.”

“What?” Grey asked in disbelief.
 

They couldn’t find Rook? Was he really that out of the loop that he didn’t know that one of his bandmates, one of this closest friends and brothers was missing?
 

“Since when?” Grey asked.
 

“Since the tour ended. He’s gone completely off the grid. We can’t track him down. We’ve been trying for a while.”

“Have you checked his old house?” Grey asked, thinking that’s where Rook would go, especially if he was in a dark place after his dad died.
 

“Yeah, a couple of times, but he’s not in there. Landon is going back to his old neighborhood to ask around. We’re kind of running out of options.”

Grey’s heart rate started to pick up as he thought about Rook and what might have happened to him. Even though Cruz and Rook were closer, Grey felt like he was the keeper of Rook, making sure he was staying on track and keeping up with the rest of them. He always held Rook accountable for his actions, and even though they fought about them most of the time, Grey knew Rook appreciated it. Rook needed someone to hold him accountable, someone to watch over him because growing up, he never had that; he was never watched over…he was the one watching over everyone else.
 

“Let me find him,” Grey said, as his mind started wandering to different places where Rook could be hiding.
 

“Are you serious?” Cruz asked, almost in disbelief.

“Yeah, I think I can find him.”

“Does that mean you’re going to come to the Grammys?”
 

“Yes,” Grey said with a slight nod.
 

“Well, mother fucker, I did it,” Cruz praised himself, as he popped another cookie in his mouth. “The band is back! I knew I was good, but damn, I should win an award,” he fist pumped the air.
 

“Calm the hell down. Just give me some time, okay? I’m working through things, so don’t go shouting to the roof tops just yet. I need to find that forgiveness that’s needed in order to work with my brother again, and I’m having some difficulty doing so, but the Grammys are important. I owe it to you and the guys to be there.”

“You owe it to yourself,” Cruz pointed out. “You worked just as hard as us, man. We all deserve to be there.”

Grey nodded and said, “You’re right, we do.”

They sat in silence for a while, taking in the smog-filled skyline of Los Angeles and just basking in silence. Grey had to admit it…even though Cruz was a pain in the ass most of the time, it was nice to have him around. It was nice to have that comradery again. He missed his guys, hell, he missed Landon. All he needed to do was just find the strength within him to let go and forgive. Like his mom said, forgiving was the hard part, but also incredibly liberating, and right now, he wanted nothing more than to have the dark shadow that was hovering over him lifted off his shoulders.
 

“Do you have a tux?” Cruz asked.
 

“Like hell I’m wearing a tux.”

“Well, it’s not like you have Quinn to dress you anymore,” Cruz said with a grin. Grey gave him a death glare and Cruz added, “Too soon?”

“Too fucking soon,” Grey responded, starting to feel sour again.
 

Cruz leaned over and punched Grey in the arm. “Loosen up, man. Joking about it is the best cure for getting over the loss of a good pussy.”

Gritting his teeth, Grey said, “It would probably be in your best interest if you leave now.”

“I gathered that,” Cruz laughed and got up. “In all seriousness, man, your brother is happy. You weren’t in love with Quinn anymore; we could all see it. Let them have this moment and you’ll have yours. The right person is out there for you; don’t let this minor setback bring you down. Quinn wasn’t made for you…she was just a stepping stone. Realize that and move the fuck along. There’s some fine ass girl out there just waiting to suck your dick every night.”

On those parting, and not so very eloquent words, Cruz took off before Grey could say back that the girl that was meant to be with him was currently sleeping in Cruz’s bed.
 

**Rook**

Journal Entry #169

The feeling of absolute hunger has stopped and numbness has taken over. I know I’ve lost some weight, I can see it in the way that my face looks sunken. To hide the weight loss from my therapist, I decided to grow a beard, making me look like a damn yeti. I think the beard is more disturbing than the sunken face.
 

Thanks to my push-up regimen every day, I am able to maintain muscle, but now I just look like an emaciated muscled moron. I just can’t seem to force myself to eat. I have a couple of saltines here, as well as some Cup of Soup packets. Apparently, my dad bought stock in that damn sodium rich entrée because there is an endless supply in the pantry. He either really liked the soup or he stole it, most likely the latter.

The darkness that envelops me every night has started to become my friend. I enjoy it, not being able to see anything, but only hear my breathing. It keeps things in perspective. I’m still alive, which is surprising, given my previous thoughts.
 

The drugs are tempting, so damn tempting, but I can’t touch them. I can’t be my father, and that is the one and only reason why I don’t dabble in them. It’s surprising that no one has tried to break in and steal my dad’s stash. Although, maybe they have and haven’t been able to find it. He kept everything well hidden.
 

She was in my dream last night, which was almost painful because I dreamt of her smile, of the way she used to look at me with those beautiful brown eyes of hers, and the way her lips used to pucker perfectly right before they met mine. Pain ricocheted through me when I woke up this morning because, in my dream, it was almost real; her touch felt real to me. I would have rather dreamt of my father beating me over and over again than of her. It was all too much.
 

I miss her so Goddamn much, to the point where I don’t think I’m going to make it another day without her soft lips touching my skin or her sweet words caressing my ear. But, every morning, I wake up, feeling emptier and emptier.
 

My prick of a therapist said I should talk to her, let her know the reason why I did what I did. It was hard not to laugh in his face. Instead, I fired him because any idiot who suggested I just walk up to Maisy, as if nothing happened and explain everything to her was a damn fool, and I didn’t want anything to do with them.
 

Maisy was a prideful girl, jealousy ran thick in her blood, and there was no way she would stand there and listen to me. No, the moment I taped that note to my door on the bus and started fucking that other woman, I kissed away any chance I ever had at even coming within a couple feet of my edgy angel.
 

Fuck, my edgy angel…I need her so fucking bad.
 

More than anything, I need her because she would make all the pain, all the sorrow, all the fucking night terrors go away. She would turn my world upside down and help me see the light again. She would give me hope, strength, and the willingness to live.
 

But having her again is a pipe dream because there is no way in hell she would ever want to see me again. I lost her forever.
 

Chapter Five

**Maisy**

“I’m just tired,” Maisy said into the phone to a worried Cole. “I feel like my brain is on overload with all the writing and pressure. I know I said we wanted to write our own songs for our next album, but I didn’t think it was going to be this hard.”

“Want me to help?” Cole asked.
 

Normally, she would have accepted help from a great man like Cole, but writing with someone else other than Kaid, Willow, and….Rook just seemed wrong. Hell, she couldn’t even write with Kaid and Willow right now. Willow wasn’t much help in the lyrics department; that wasn’t her thing, but when it came down to laying down a beat and putting everything together, Willow shined. That was why Kaid and Maisy spent most of their days in the studio. Willow would come in and help with some harmonization, but she grew tired most of the time with Maisy’s writer’s block and Maisy didn’t blame her. She was getting tired of herself.
 

“That’s sweet, Cole. I appreciate it, but I really think Kaid and I need to do this on our own.”

“I understand,” he said with disappointment. “I just hate hearing you so sad. I wish there was something I could do. Do you want me to come over?”

“No,” Maisy said a little too quickly. “I mean, that would be great, but I’m not much company now; I think I just need to chill and not think about anything.”

“You can chill with your boyfriend, you know?”

Guilt washed over her as she thought about all the times she used to just hang out with Rook and do nothing. There was no one else she would rather do nothing with back then. They would just lay on the bed in the back of the bus and stare up at the carpeted ceiling while holding hands. Sometimes Rook would hum a melody and Maisy would just listen to the deep seductiveness of his voice.
 

But, with Cole, she never found that comfort level, to just sit there in silence while contemplating life and what was to come. Granted, she didn’t know Cole that well just yet, but with Rook, it seemed so easy, like they were made for each other, molded to be one.
 

The churning of her stomach brought her back to the present as it did flips and nauseated her to the point that she needed to get off the phone with Cole.
 

“I know, and I really appreciate the offer, but I’m just tired and not feeling so well. Can I call you tomorrow?”

“Yeah, sure,” Cole answered deflated. “I hope you feel better, Maisy. I care about you.”

“I know you do. Thank you, Cole. Have a good night.”

“Night, sweetie.”

Maisy barely hung up her phone before she took off toward the bathroom and opened the toilet lid. Her chest heaved as she lost her breakfast and lunch. A sheen of sweat coated her skin as she leaned over the toilet for support. Her stomach convulsed a couple more times, just as Kaid walked in.
 

Instantly, his hands were on her hair and back and cooing into her ear.
 

“What’s going on?” he asked.
 

Maisy caught her breath and wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. When she turned to Kaid, tears started to flow from her eyes, and she fell into his embrace.
 

“Shhh, talk to me Maisy, what’s wrong? Are you pregnant?”

Pregnant? Maisy laughed and shook her head no.
 

“I haven’t had sex since Rook,” she confirmed in between sobs.

“Okay, so what’s going on?” relief was evident in his voice.

Needing more comfort, Maisy buried her head in Kaid’s chest and let him hold her. They sat on the bathroom floor for what seemed like forever until Kaid groaned and pulled Maisy into his grasp and stood up.
 

“My ass is numb; I’m moving you to the couch.”

Maisy didn’t even acknowledge him; she just let him take care of her as he rubbed her back and stroked her hair.
 

Once her crying seemed to calm down and her eyes were starting to dry, Kaid pulled her away and said, “Thank fuck you’re not pregnant, because I seriously thought I almost had a heart attack back there. I don’t know what we would do with a baby on a tour bus.”

Maisy snorted out a mucousy laugh, and Kaid handed her a tissue, while looking at her with slight disgust.
 

“Don’t stare at my snot.”

“Well, clean that shit up,” he laughed, and then looked down at his shirt. “Ah, hell, Maisy. Look what you did to my Queen shirt.”

Maisy looked down and saw a giant wet spot that could either be tears or snot, or maybe a little bit of both. She laughed and said, “Put it in with my laundry; I’ll wash it for you.”

BOOK: Fame
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