February 1st - 2156.55 hours - New York City
Nellie slammed her light purple hairbrush on her dressing room table and stared at her reflection in the mirror.
The image itself was familiar. Violet eyes, long curly black hair, skintight minidress. Round face, small nose. But the girl inside? Yeah, she didn't know a thing about her. Sixteen years on this planet and she still had no idea who she was. She knew she was a Catholic that went to church every Sunday and she knew that people liked to hear her voice, but was deep down there?
Sixteen years, right on the day. Not that anybody had remembered. Her parents were dead, her brother was on the other side of the world. Her manager was the closest thing she had to a parent, and wouldn't he have wished her a happy birthday before . . . she checked the clock, its red digits glaring at her . . . ten o'clock at night?
Nellie put a washcloth under warm running water and began to work on getting the gothic makeup off her face. She had started crying without realizing it, and she didn't want to actually look like she'd let emotion show. It would be on the front page of Star in the next issue.
It was bad enough that she'd had a concert on her sixteenth birthday, but nobody had bothered to remember.
Just one of the joys of being a teen star. Nobody knew anything but the shit they read in tabloids and the music she wrote. They had no idea that she was serenading to them the depths of her soul, they just knew that her voice sounded pretty. Who has time to concern themselves with . . . oh, the Sweet Sixteenth of the girl they claimed to be their idol?
No, Nellie didn't want a big party. She tried to avoid crowds when she could; she hated the attention, no matter what the tabloids said. But . . . it would be nice for someone to say Happy Birthday on her Facebook page. She always replied to her fans, she would NOT just let something as simple as a 'Happy Birthday' slip under the radar.
There was a rapping at the door. She put the washcloth down and glanced in the mirror. The black eyeshadow and platinum eyeliner were smeared down her cheeks; she had washed it all off the top but forgot to clean off where the rivers of silent tears had already been.
Nellie fought the urge to violently wrench the door open and tell whoever was there to get the hell away and go do something productive.
She cleared her throat to make sure it wasn't scratchy. "It's open." Shit, her voice still broke on the last syllable.
The door opened gently and a girl about her age - maybe a year older - entered. She recognized her as one of the backup singers, but she didn't know her name.
I definitely could never forget those eyes though.
Okay, yeah, her eyes were stunning. Big, innocent, and icy blue. Her pale blonde hair was pulled into a braid and she wore a sky blue t-shirt and pink sweat pants. She sort of reminded Nellie of Elsa from the new Disney movie Frozen.
"Can I help you?" Nellie asked, trying not to sound pathetic.
The girl looked like she wanted to say something to Nellie about the tear stains, but she opted to just say, "Um, happy birthday."
It was obvious that she was nervous in the presence of the one and only Nellie Wafer. That name is ridiculous, how did I think it was a good idea?
Oh yeah, she was fourteen and into sugar puns at the time.
"Thanks." You have no idea how much that means to me. "What's your name?"
She half expected her to say Elsa, but the name she got was much better. "I'm Harmony Hill."
"Nice to meet you." Why was she so flustered?
"How old are you?"
Good, not that much older . . . why was she thinking this? She was not a lesbian!
"Would you like to stay here for a while? I could use some company."
Why did I ask that? Was it too soon? Why am I thinking like this?
"No . . . I have to get back to practice and-" Harmony caught the look in her eye though and finished, ". . . perfect the chorus, but I guess I could hang out for five minutes, maybe?"