Mixed Feelings

Icon is the biggest boy band in the world. They're even more popular than One Direction at this point. Liza Nelson can't get enough of them, but Erin Frederick absolutely detests the band. What happens after a chance encounter with one of the band members? Erin's life definitely won't ever be the same.

*the guys are based on the boys in One Direction*


2. ~Erin~


Front row.  I honestly cannot believe how good our seats are at the concert.  Liza is over the moon with ecstasy.  I’m not exactly a fan of the noise level, and the concert hasn’t even started. 

When it does, my best friend and everyone else around me are jumping around and singing along with the boys: Lucas York, Derek Towers, Jared Silver, Joseph Austen, and of course, Noah Somers.  I stand there stolidly.  No way am I acting like a crazy fan-girl, especially since I’m not one.  Besides, I don’t even know the words to their songs.

“This is stupid,” I mutter to no one. “I shouldn’t have come.”

“What did you say?” Liza shouts.

“Nothing,” I reply, raising my voice so she can hear me. “It doesn’t matter.”

Her stare is quizzical, but then my best friend quickly turns back to the stage.  She continues to scream and wave her sign around—the one that says “Let Me Be Your Only, Jared Silver!”  With a glare set on my face and my arms cross, I stare up at the boys as they dance around.  They come to the edge of the stage, and the fans around me go crazier, if that’s even possible.

My breath catches in my throat.  Noah has seen me.  We’re making eye contact now.  He looks shocked, and my face is probably a mirror of his.  Of course I’m probably the last person on earth he thought he’d see at one of his concerts.

When the song ends, Liza turns to me.  Her golden blonde curls are dancing around her flushed cheeks.

“Erin,” she says, “I know you totally hate Icon, but I think Noah and Lucas were actually looking at you just a few minutes ago.”

That stuns me even more than Noah seeing me.  Was one of his band-mates looking at me, too?  There’s no way on earth I like them, but I’m still pretty surprised.

“Guess we’ll get to see if they really were looking at you afterwards,” Liza continues.

I give her a puzzled look.

“Oh, I have backstage passes!” she exclaims. “Didn’t I tell you?”

“No, you didn’t,” I say grimly.  Liza knows that if she had, she would never be able to convince me to come to the concert.

The rest of the show passes by in a blur.  I pull out my phone so I can entertain myself.  But instead of Tweeting about how bored I am, I end up Googling the band and the five guys.  I learn some crazy things about them, like how Jared—the one Liza has a crush on—likes curly hair on a girl, and how Joe Austen likes it when people play with his hair, and how Lucas York is a sucker for romantic movies.

Then Liza hands me a backstage pass, which I loop over my neck.  She leads the way, and we flash our passes at the security guards.  One of them escorts us back to where we get to meet the guys.  The security guy knocks on the door.

“Boys, I’ve got two girls here with backstage passes.  Are you decent?” he calls out, sounding very gruff.

Liza giggles.  I just roll my eyes, but then I freeze.  One of the band members—the blond one; I think he’s Joe—has opened the door.  He smiles politely at Liza, and then our eyes meet.  His eyes are blue, just like Noah’s and mine, but his are much paler.

“Sure, they can come in,” he says.  His Irish accent is even more charming than Noah’s British accent, and I realize that he and his band-mates are probably used to getting girls just by speaking.

Joe holds the door open wider, and I nudge Liza in front of me.  She’s going to enjoy this twenty times more than I will, so I figure she might as well enter first.  As I pass by Joe, I feel his eyes on me, and I can’t help but blush.

Then I see Noah, and he looks startled once again.  I manage a small smile, just because I’m really not a jerk.  He breaks into a grin and crosses the room.  But suddenly, Lucas York is in front of Liza and me, blocking Noah’s way.

“Hi, I’m Lucas,” he says in that flirtatious way of his that I learned about from the Internet articles.

“We know,” Liza says breathlessly. “I’m Liza Nelson, and this is my best friend, Erin Frederick.”

By this point, Noah—who was glaring at Lucas—has slid around his best friend.  Their friendship is something else I learned about from my research.

“So it’s Erin, huh?” he says to me.

I shrug noncommittally.

“I thought you hated Icon?” he comments, raising an eyebrow.

Oh my word.  I’m suddenly falling for Noah, and how he raises a single eyebrow.  In my imagination, I shake my head, ridding myself of the thought.

“I do,” I reply, planting a hand on my hip. “Liza dragged me here, in exchange for redecorating my living room.”  I turn to her then. “Although I think you owe me double since you neglected to mention your backstage passes.”

She smiles sheepishly, but her gaze quickly flickers to Jared Silver.  His eyes are practically glued to her, and I wonder if it’s her charismatic vibe or her curly hair.  Derek Towers waves to us from his spot on a couch.  He’s too busy on his phone, and I remember reading that he has a girlfriend.  All the other guys are single, though.

Soon, I’m sitting and talking with Joe, Lucas, and Noah, while Jared and Liza are practically making out.  Okay, that’s an exaggeration.  But they look pretty cozy, and I watch as he subtly slides his arm around her shoulders.  I wonder if I should worry about Liza, but then I remember that Jared is the least flirtatious Icon member.  He won’t take advantage of my best friend or break her heart.

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