4. Rumor Has It

"I feel it, in my heartbeat

I’m a superstar, now that’s breaking news

I’m just so excited,

I was born to shine, now that’s breaking news"

"Breaking News", -Alpha Centauri

"You did what?" Manager Douglass yelled and stomped on the breaks hard; we were all jerked into a painful stop in the middle of traffic. The blaring of car horns blasting through the air like knives slicing through butter suggested one thing; that our sudden stop wasn't very much appreciated. I shrunk back into my seat when I saw a thick blue vein pulsing on the side of my manager's face.

I'd seen him mad before; like the time when I stuffed his birthday cake full of firecrackers and they went off after he blew out the candles and cut the cake last year. Or the time I threw a bucket full of water balloons on him from the roof of the NJ Productions building after he grounded me and made me stay inside all day for showing up late for work. But never have I ever seen him pissed. He looked like he was about to blow his top off. If this were a cartoon, I'd bet you'd be seeing smoke coming out of his ears and fire escaping his open mouth.

Kelsey leaned over from the passenger's side of Manager Douglass's black SUV and patted his shoulder. "Smooth," Kai said from somewhere behind me with a dark chuckle.

I rolled my eyes and crossed my arms over my chest. So I wrote her a dumb apology note. What was the big deal? "Do you know what you've just done?" Manager Douglass snapped and glared at me in the rearview mirror.

I frowned. "What's the big deal? It's just a note," was the best answer I could give him.

And also the worst. Kelsey squeezed the manager's shoulder gently. I swear, if I didn't know better, I'd say that she had some feelings for the man. It was just the she acted sometimes toward him. Maybe I was wrong; she was half his age, only twenty-five and manager already had a girlfriend.

"'It's just a note," Manager mimicked me in a high, snooty voice that wasn't my own. Both Alex and Kai chuckled somewhere behind me.

I sighed. This was not going to be the long, quiet drive back to the hotel that I'd been hoping for. "Humph," Manager said and scowled. "I can't believe this."

"What did I do?" I asked and threw my hands up in the air agitatedly. Kelsey jumped at me tone and Manager narrowed his eyes at me in his rearview mirror.

"You put this whole band in danger that's what!" he shouted angrily and I winced a little.

"I can handle your juvenile pranks, Eden, but this has crossed the line; you wrote a love note to some random girl who most likely will go around boasting about it and will post it on the internet claiming something absurd like 'Eden told me that he loves me! Woo-hoo!' and then what'll happen? Rumors will fly around!"

I raised an eyebrow. "So? That comes with the job."

Kai and Alex groaned in unison and Kelsey hung her head in disappointment. Didn't all celebrities have rumors flying around about them all the time? Why was it so bad that it happened to us? We were celebrities too, weren't we? It came with the job.

"Fool!" Manager shouted and slammed a fist down on the dashboard of his car; the blasting horns were now louder, a whole symphony of deafening, ear-splitting noises with irritated threats and a few fists being waved in the air threateningly. Kai leaned forward and peeked out my window for any sign of a police cruiser coming by.

"As much as it pains me to say it," he said without looking at me. "I suggest we get out of here before the cops show up. I doubt they'll let us get off easily simply because of whom we are."

Kelsey nodded in agreement and with a loud sign, Manager hit the gas petal and sped off into the brightly-lit night, grumbling under his breath and muttered a thousand curses on my name. I sure feel loved, I thought sarcastically and stared out the window for the rest of the trip.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I took the stairs of my home two at a time until I reached my room down located to my right at the end of the hall; it swung it open and took slow, exaggerated steps, as if I were the bride of my own wedding being led down the aisle while draped on the arm of my father. Had he still existed in my life today was what I meant.

My dad was twenty- one when he got his sixteen-year-old girlfriend pregnant during her sophomore year in high school: Mom said she'd met him at a rave she'd gone to with my aunt Josie, who was thirteen at the time, and a couple of her friends. He was there at the rave with his friends because he had taken a 'break' from his college studies to 'take a breather'. They were introduced to each other by Molly-Ann, one of my mom's old friends and our old neighbor who moved to Texas with her husband because of work. The two got to talking and then started going out two weeks later. Their relationship lasted about six months before mom realized she was pregnant with me and dad decided to 'step up' and be a man. A few weeks after I was born, he split; he went back to the apartment they shared and cleaned all of his stuff out, only leaving a note and two hundred bucks in cash behind for us to survive on.

I hadn't heard anything from him; no birthday cards or happy New Year wishes. Not even a simple phone call. I sighed as I slipped into my swivel chair and turned my laptop on. Was he even worth my spending time thinking about him? Nope.

My laptop came and alive with a bright blue-white glow and the picture of all three members of Alpha Centauri popped up on the screen along with the other desktop icons in neat, straight rows. I melted when my eyes took in the glorious picture; Eden on the left sporting tight black jeans and a snug, thin green sweater that matched his gorgeous green eyes. He had one fist in the air and the most adorable smile I'd ever seen.

Next to him and standing behind the microphone stand was Alex; for some reason, I didn't find him as attractive as the other two. He had both of his large hands wrapped around the microphone at his lips and a serious expression on his face, which was odd since he was known for his killer beach-babe smile. His cropped, white blonde bangs were cow licked and the rest of his hair was spiked out in the back, making look like a real badass; his plain white button up shirt was unbuttoned, revealing a glimpse of his toned abs.

I licked my lips lustfully.

And last, but definitely not least, was the real badass of the group; Kai Fioralia; his normally long, shaggy hair was combed backward and a striped red-and-black tie hung loosely around his elegantly long neck. He bore one of his rare smirks and his jeans were dark with a series of rips in them. His eyes were closed and he seemed to be swinging his hips in time to the music.

Three major hotties and all of them single!

I clicked on the internet explorer icon and waited for Google to show up before I typed in the browser. The phone buzzed on the desk next to me and I jumped. Chill, I told myself and reached for the phone. It was probably just Hayden.

"Why haven't you posted the note yet?" she squealed and I jumped at her tone; she sounded like she was being strangled, her voice garbled and incoherent.

"Hello to you too," I said and giggled. "I just got home."

"Well hurry up!" she said again, this time sounding eager. "I can't keep everybody waiting forever, you know!"

"Wait, what?" Just what was that suppose to mean? Hayden sighed impatiently and continued. "I told everyone at school what you told me! Every girl there is flippin' out! They-"

"You what?" I yelped and stood up, causing my chair to fall over to the floor nosily. "Hayden- why did you do that? Why didn't you tell me you were gonna-"

"I thought it should be a surprise," Hayden said and sighed gleefully. I rolled my eyes; this was so typical of her. You tell her a secret today and by tomorrow, everyone already knows. The consequences of gossip were never good. I, having been the person who use to spread it, would know.

"I wish you hadn't," I replied hotly. "Now everyone at school's gonna think I know them personally and then the rumors will start."

Oh, yes, the rumors; I knew exactly what was gonna happen now. Once I posted the note with Eden's name on it, the fans would go crazy. They'd all send me a million messages asking me to hook them up or get the band to play at their sweet sixteen parties. After, say, a day or two, everyone at school will think that because I had a note in my possession with Eden's name on it meant that I was also dating the guy; war would break out. My name would be written on the bathroom stalls with a thousand slashes slicing through it in slow, angry drags and no one would want to even talk to me because they'd assumed that I was some snobby, stuck-up, bit-

"Hello?" Hayden said in irritation. "Hello? Kat? Are you there?"

"Y-yeah," I stammered, dazed and still fearful of what was to come. "Like I said- won't that be great? We'll be popular at school and everyone will love us!" she gushed and giggled with excitement.

"I gotta go," I said and hung up before she could reply.

I reached over without looking and turned my computer off before slipping the note underneath my pillow and heading to the bathroom across the hall for a much needed shower.

The End

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