I’m lying in bed, reading a steamy romance novel, when Katie says, “What happened with you and Dawson tonight?”
“We just, you know, we’re maybe starting over. ”
“He just changed his relationship status,” she says, as my phone buzzes.
I pick it up and read what I’m supposed to approve: It’s complicated with Kiki Kiki.
And I don’t know who came up with that relationship status when they invented Facebook, but I’m thinking I couldn’t have described it better myself.
Because it is complicated.
And I’m pretty sure that my sleeping with him just made it even more complicated.
I decide to call Riley. “How’s the video going?”
“Almost done. We’ve got three computers with all the video, and Dallas and Aiden have been helping me find the footage I need. It’s turning out great. Are you going to be up for a little while? I’m putting some finishing touches on it and will send you the link in a few. ”
“I’ll wait up. I can’t wait to see it. Um, Riley, uh, how come Aiden is helping you?”
bsp; “He offered. ”
“Oh. Are you friends?”
“Yeah, pretty much. ”
A few minutes later, my computer dings with an email. I follow the link and watch the video.
I call Riley back.
“I, um, it’s really good, Riley,” I blubber.
“Are you crying?”
“I’m just, it’s just . . . really good. ”
“Yeah, you said that already. It’s supposed to make you want to come here, not cry. ”
“It will make people want to come here. It just . . . ”
“It’s about us. ”
“Exactly. I love you and Dallas. ”
“What part made you cry?”
“Just all of it,” I lie.
“What part made you cry?” he asks again sternly.
“Aiden’s part. How people here inspire him to be a better person. About the sunsets. ”
“And why did that make you cry?”
“I can’t tell you. ”
“Because I slept with your brother tonight. ”
“Is that what It’s complicated means?”
“Baby, it’s okay with me if you like Aiden. I know you’ve liked him since school started. ”
“Thanks, Riley, but I don’t like Aiden. I mean, I did, at first. But he doesn’t like me back. He wants to be my friend. ”
“Oh, really? Your friend?” Riley chuckles.
“Don't laugh at me. I’ve been friend-zoned. It’s embarrassing. ”
“Keatyn, I swear, you are clueless. ”
“I am not clueless. He told me himself he wants to be my friend. ”
“I want to be Ariela’s friend. ”
“You also want to sleep with her. Aiden doesn’t want to sleep with me. Actually, that’s not true. He said we might sleep together someday. But I had a friends with benefits relationship before. I don’t want that. I want more. ”
“And you’re getting more from Dawson?”
“Yes. No. Kinda. He says he loves me. ”
“I’m learning that saying it and proving it are two very different things. Night, baby. ”
Wednesday, October 19th
A little more disturbing.
I’m putting my mascara on, getting ready for class, when my phone buzzes with a text.
I glance down at it.
Garrett: Meet me at that little diner in town in 20 minutes. We need to talk about Miami.
Me: You’re here? In town? What’s wrong?
Garrett: I need to talk to you.
Me: You have bad news? What’s wrong??!!! Is my family okay??
Garrett: They’re fine. We just have a lot to talk about.
I sign myself out of school, pretending to have a dentist appointment, and drive to the diner.
Garrett meets me outside my car. The first thing he does is pull me into a hug.
“I swear, you’re going to give me gray hair. I’m glad you’re okay. ”
I pull away, pleasantly surprised by his hug.
“Are we going to talk about Tiny? Did you find some clues to connect him with Vincent? Is he going to jail for a very long time? Can I go back home?”
He sighs and shakes his head. “Afraid not. The guy’s like teflon. I can’t get anything to stick. ”
“What if we set him up?”
He narrows his eyes at me. “Set him up?”
“Yeah, planted some evidence. Made it look like he killed Tiny. Tip off the cops. ”
“I believe in justice, Keatyn. But I won’t discard my morals. ”
“So, I guess that means hiring a hit man to take him out isn’t an option?”
Garrett laughs and shakes his head at me. “Very funny,” he says, but then his face gets serious. “There are a few things going on that I want you to know about. ”
“I’m about to get the bad news now, right?”
He hands me a tabloid magazine. Sprawled across the front page is a large headline. Tommy’s Affair With Abby’s Best Friend. Below is a photo of Tommy hugging Millie. The photo looks damaging. Millie is getting into a car and it does look like he’s saying goodbye to his lover. He’s hugging her tighter than usual.
“This can’t be true. ”
“It’s not. Tommy, Millie, and a producer had dinner together in LA a few nights ago. They’re trying to convince Tommy to guest star in a few episodes of Millie’s prime time soap opera. She was tired, so she asked Tommy to walk her out to the car. The reason he’s hugging her so tightly is she just told him the reason for her being tired. ”
My eyes get big. “She’s pregnant, isn’t she? Oh, my gosh! I’m so excited for her and Deron!”
“She is pregnant. But the press is going crazy. Pulling out any old photos of them together without Abby. Or cropping Abby out of the picture. Their publicists expect this to get worse before it gets better. I just wanted to make sure you don’t worry about it. ”
“Thanks, Garrett, I appreciate it. ”
“Now, for something a little more disturbing. ” He hands me another paper. This one has the words Press Release across the top of it.
Vincent Sharpe of A Breath Behind You Films is pleased to announce casting has commenced for the green-lit film, Another Day at the Lake, a remake of the Abby Johnston cult classic. Mr. Sharpe says, “While some roles have been cast, we’re looking for an unknown to play the role Abby Johnston originated. We’ll be doing nationwide open casting calls in many major cities. If you know someone who looks like the main character in the early version of the film, please message us. And be sure to check our website for details, but get ready Miami and New York, we’re coming to you first. ”
The paper slips out of my hand and my knees start to give out. “This is brilliant. ”