I woke up to find myself in a bunk, which was weird because I distinctly remember sleeping on the couch. I slowly climbed out of the bunk so I wouldn’t wake anyone. As I started walking I felt someone grab my ankle. I quickly turned to see who it was.
“Hey.” Said a sleepy JC.
I just waved and walked out of the bunk area. JC followed and sat down next to me.
“I thought I fell asleep on this.” I said as I patted the couch.
“You did, but we brought you to a bunk. We figured you would be more comfortable.” JC smiled warmly.
“Thanks. Do you guys have a show today?” I raised my eyebrow confusedly. They were surprisingly sweet for the crew that had kidnapped me.
“No we have the day off. The bus has been stopped for a while, so you can probably wander around for a bit.” He shrugged and leaned back.
“I would if I had clean clothes to wear.” I smiled up at JC.
“I’ll go see if Haley’s awake.” He groaned as he left the bus at a trudge.
When JC got back with some clothes for me I got in a quick shower and left the bus. I needed to get away from all the craziness. We were in a quiet town and not too many people were out. It was calming, relaxing and less hectic being around normal people. I was still taking in my glorious surroundings when I bumped into someone.
“Watch where you’re going you little…Casey!” Squealed the light-brown haired bitch I call my sister. But how? What the fuck would by sister be doing in…wherever I was!
“Holly,” I said with fake excitement as she hugged me. “What are you doing here?” I said through clenched teeth. My heart was racing in absolute horror. It was like watching a movie and knowing the jump-scare is coming, but not when.
“I’m getting married!” she said as she flung her huge engagement ring in my face. I squinted and leaned away from the dangerous gesture.
“To whom?” I asked a little shocked that anyone would be able to put up with my sister.
“You remember Alec, right?” My stomach dropped when she mentioned the name of my ex-boyfriend. Of course I knew him; he was my fucking boyfriend when they met. But she couldn’t mean…
“You’re getting married to Alec?” I choked.
“Yeah, we started dating after you left.” She flushed.
“Well good for you guys.” I said with fake excitement as I widened my eyes and grin. It actually hurt now.
“I’ll go get him; we can all go get some lunch!” She wiggled up and down in utter enjoyment. Oh, she knew I was squirming.
“I don’t-“ I started but she interrupted me.
“Come on!” she dragged me to a nearby hotel.
We just got our drinks and I already heard all about how wonderful and perfect their life is. How Alec is the CEO of a major computer company, which he inherited from his father, and how Holly spends all of his money. Their house is a fucking castle right by a lake. I also heard all about the wedding plans.
The smile from Holly’s face faded and she looked down at her hot pink nails. And yes, I knew that look. She was enjoying bragging about her own life, but it was time for her to make mine much more miserable. I was surprised she had gone on for so long without torturing me. Maybe she was going to a therapist.
“So do you have a boyfriend?” a smirk slithered across her face. “Or have you not gotten over Alec yet?”God I hate her. Of course I’ve gotten over Alec; it’s been two years since I graduated. But, if I tell her I’m single no matter what I say, she’ll think I still love him. This is the kind of torment that I lived with for 18 years. My sister’s a god damn prick.
And this is where I go into panic mode. What the fuck was I supposed to say? Alec’s right next to her! If I don’t have a boyfriend, which I don’t, she’ll mock me right in front of him! She’ll tell him her little sister is still in love with her fiancé! But if I say I have one, she’ll scheme even more! Fuck, fuck, fuck.
“Yes I do.” I said as I took a sip of my coke and winced as soon as the lie hit my lips.
“What’s his name?” She asked looking curious. She raised an eyebrow but the smirk never faded. It’s like she didn’t believe me.
I practically choked on my soda. Why didn’t I think she would ask questions? Stupid, stupid, STUPID! Of course the brat would ask that.
Think of a name, think of a name. I thought to myself. But there are so many names in the world; from fucking Rajesh to George or Tom! But I can’t give her a dumb name and if I hesitate she’ll know I’m lying oh FUCK.
“Bret.” I said before I could come up with another name. I hesitated and looked up at her for any signs of disbelief. Why hadn’t I just said Rajesh?!
“Bret who?” laughed Alec.
“Bret Von Dehl.” I said as I nervously scratched at the back of my head. Von Dehl? Really Casey? Are you trying to get yourself killed?
“Is he here?” Asked Holly with a toothy grin.
“He’s in town.” My voice came out dry and shaky, and tried to give her a vague response.
“Call him; I want to meet him.” Holly folded her arms across her chest. Her voice had gone from excited, to blank. She didn’t believe me, or she was mad that I could get a guy. Well truth is; I can’t get a guy and she shouldn’t have believed me. FUCKING STUPID, STUPID!
“I can’t. I broke my phone.” I smiled on the inside. No meeting Bret today.
“Here, use mine.” She handed me her pink sparkly smart phone. Why hadn’t I thought of that either?
“Alright.” I let out a sigh of defeat and began dialing Brandon’s number. I got up from the table and walked out the door to talk to him.
“Hello?” Brandon’s voice sounded through the phone.
“Hey, it’s me…is Bret there?” I sighed and spoke as quietly as I could, although I knew Holly couldn’t hear me.
“Who’s me?” he sounded very confused. Damn idiot.
“Casey. Can I please talk to Bret?” I stiffened in nervousness.
“If I can find him…” I heard a lot of shuffling as he went to find Bret.
“Hey Casey. What’s up?” asked Bret as the shuffling ended.
“You’re probably going to hate me.” I groaned.
“Why would I hate you? We’re the ones who kidnapped you.” He let out a laugh.
“I got into some trouble.” I admitted slowly.
“Um…hold on.” I heard more shuffling, a click, and the background noise stopped. “I can hear you better now.”
“This is really awkward and I’m really sorry, please don’t be mad at me.” I was practically whining.
“I won’t be mad.” He laughed.
“Can you help me?” I asked.
“Well I still don’t know what you did, but I do owe you. But if you killed someone, hasta LA vista,” Bret chuckled.
“Well I ran into my sister.” I said.
“So?” Bret snorted.
“She’s one of the reasons why I moved to the other side of the country right after I graduated.” I rubbed the back of my neck.
“Oh…” He still sounded confused. “I’m not going to murder her, if that’s what you’re asking. I’ve done enough illegal shit this week, thank you very much,”
“Oh shut up for a minute! Stop trying to be funny. She was really bothering me and I kinda’ said that youweremyboyfriend.”
“What was that last part?” I heard him choke on something.
“I told her that we’re dating and now she wants to meet you.” I repeated still quickly, but understandable. I felt SO embarrassed. But at least she didn’t want to meet a Rajesh.
“Where are you?” He sighed after a long pause.
“A little Italian restaurant down the street from the bus.” I replied slowly.
“Alright.” He hung up on me, leaving me unsure. I walked back inside to sit with my sister.
“Is he joining us?” said Holly as I gave her, her phone.
“I think so.” I looked out the windows nervously.
“Great.” She folded her arms and had a smug look on her face.
After a few moments of awkward silence Bret joined us at the table following our waiter. I moved over in the booth as he sat next to me. He kissed my forehead and I felt my stomach flip and the heat come into my cheeks. When Holly saw him a look of disgust swept across her face.
“Bret, this is my sister, Holly, and her fiancé, Alec.” I said as I gestured toward the people.
“Hey.” He said and nodded toward my sister. She was such a snob; I could tell she didn’t like Bret.
“So Bret, what do you do for a living?” said Alec, who hasn’t said that much today.
“I sing in a band. We’re on tour now.” He said with a smile. Oh Bret; so naïve and friendly.
“Of course you are.” Scoffed Holly.
“What’s that supposed to mean?” said Bret sounding confused.
“Nothing…nothing. What’s your band’s name?” she said with a fake smile.
“The Relapse Symphony.” Bret’s whole face lit up at his band’s name. I could really tell he loved what he was doing.
“How long have you been dating?” She shot.
“About a month.” Bret responded to Holly’s question without hesitation and put his arm around me.
“And you already went on tour with him?” Holly said in disbelief.
“Only for a few days. This only my second day with the guys.” This was one of the first things I haven’t lied about today.
“Okay.” She said with sarcasm dripping from her voice.
“So does your band do well?” Asked Alec.
“Well this is our first tour, but we’re doing pretty well.” Bret shrugged.
“Well, look what’s not surprising. Casey found yet another deadbeat to follow around. Don’t worry Bret you’re not the first guy like this that Casey has been in a relationship with. I think the guy before Alec is still in prison. Alec was the only decent guy she’s ever been with and she left him. Her relationships never go well because she thinks she knows what guys are good but they never are. She has been to jail because of a relationship gone wrong. You might just want to dump her now and save some time. I don’t want mom and dad to have to bail her out again, and I don’t want to see another boyfriend of hers get locked up.”
If that’s the snap, I didn’t want to see the crackle and pop. See, when my sister would start the torture, it was always end in something like this. A snap. By the time Holly finished her rant I was trying so hard not to cry. She had no reason to freak out like that. There are some things that I don’t want people to know about my past, and Holly just said one to someone from my favorite band. Kill. Me. Now.
“What?” Bret stared her down for a minute with his jaw dropped. I couldn’t move. Only my lip trembled.
“I think you heard me,” Holly said smugly.
“And I think you’re in need of an attitude adjustment,” Bret shot back.
“Me? You need an outfit adjustment! The Ramones? Aren’t they dead? Or at least they should be,” She flipped her hair out of her face, but I knew that was Bret’s snapping point.
“Your sister doesn’t deserve this shit!” Bret screamed in her face. The whole restaurant was looking at us now. “What crawled up your ass and died?”
“Your music career,” She smirked.
“You know what? Casey is a good person and her own sister should not say things like that to her or her boyfriend! You should respect the people your family cares about! Come on Casey you don’t need this shit. And for another thing; you can shove a fork up your ass!” Said Bret as he grabbed my hand and walked towards the door.
“Casey,” said Holly “don’t forget about the wedding!”
We were walking back to the bus in silence for a while. Soon Bret spoke up.
“Was what your sister said true?” Bret coughed.
“Yes.” I scoffed at myself and sniffled.
“Why did you move so far away? Was it just because of your sister?” He pressed.
“No it wasn’t just because of her.” I said shortly.
“So, why then?” he sounded sad more than curious. I rubbed my hand at the back of my neck. Clearly he knew I was uncomfortable. “Sorry. You don’t have to answer such a personal question.”
“Thank you for standing up for me.” I said as I gave him a hug.
“Any time. I’m just glad that you didn’t ask me to murder anyone” He said as he hugged me back.