Arrowleaf Bed and Breakfast

Twenty three year old, Dakota Bay co-owns a bed and breakfast with her parents in Arkansas. Their normal customers are couples looking for a romantic getaway. So, when they get call from an indie band who wants to make a reservation for seven months so they can write music, Dakota isn't sure if she'll like these long term visitors. But, when you spend so much time with people, they've got to at least become friends, or maybe something more.

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1. Chapter One

Dakota

I angrily shake a pillow out of it's pillow case and it plops down on the floor. I practically rip the fitted sheet off of the mattress, and throw it down next to the pillows. I absolutely hate changing sheets. But, unfortunately, so do my parents, which is why they make me do it. I'm just trying to carry the mound of dark purple sheets down the steps without dying, when my mom yells from downstairs.

"Dakota! Come here for a second!"

"I'm coming," I mumble into the sheets. I realize they shouldn't be anywhere near my face, when I remember the couple who slept in them last night, and what they could have been doing. The thought makes me want to throw them down the stairs. After years of helping to run a Bed and Breakfast, and having to deal with thousands of couples, that kind of thing doesn't really faze me anymore. But, we could all hear this one from downstairs, and it was worse than usual. And we thought our rooms were soundproof...

I remember when I was eight years old, on a particularly bad night, and I asked my parents if the people upstairs were jumping on the bed. My mom took me into another room, and cleared that up pretty quickly. So, since I've known what they were doing since I was super young, the idea of engaging in those activities has never appealed to me. 

"Yeah, mom?" I say as I drop the sheets on top of the washing machine. I'll come back to those, later. 

"I have some great news!" she exclaims as she finishes marking down whoever her last phone call was with. "Jeremy, get in here!"

I'm really, really hoping she's going to tell us we're going on vacation. We haven't been in years, and I'm getting really tired of all of this romance, and the couples, and sex, and everything else that happens in this stupid Bed and Breakfast.

"We're having a new client for seven months!" my mom exclaims.

"Seven months!?" my dad and I both yell, in disbelief. Seven months is a long time, and why would this ever be exciting.

"Yes!" my mother says excitedly. "But I haven't told you the best part yet!"

"And what would that be," my father grumbles, and I laugh.

"Well, they're a band from Nashville called 'Surface Forest.' They're coming to get away from the city and write their second album! And they chose our Bed and Breakfast!"

"Wonderful," I say, my voice dripping with sarcasm. Why couldn't they have picked somewhere else. Oh, I don't know, maybe in Tennessee? And then, it's probably going to be a country band, which is probably my least favorite genre of music. "How is this stupid country band going to pay for these seven months?"

"Well," my mom starts, fidgeting with the end of her cat printed apron. My dad and I know she's up to something we won't like when she does that. " First of all, they're not country they're an Indie band. And secondly, I told them they could stay for a seven hundred dollars a month, if they buy all of the food, and help around the house."

"That's it?!" my dad exclaims. We usually charge one hundred dollars a night. We'll lose so much money on this!

"And then we have to cook more than once a day!" I say, because that is what I'm really worried about. Cooking breakfast for tenants is hard enough, let alone dinner and lunch.

"Can I please explain myself?" my mom says, waiting for my father and I to calm down.

"Fine," we mumble.

"I know we all want a break from all of these couples." she starts. "And with the band being here, we have a seven month break. And Dakota, I think they're in their twenties, so you should get along with them, alright."

Now that I think about it, this sounds okay. It'll be great not to have new people coming in every few days. I'll only have to wash the sheets once a week instead of everyday! Yes!

"Alright," I say, picking up my cat, Wildflower, who was just weaving in and out of my legs. "When are they coming? We have to wash the sheets, make the beds, go buy groceries, make sure all the dishes are washed..."

"Tomorrow, so we better get started," my mom says, and my dad and I groan. This is going to be a long day.


Alex

"Oh my god, guys!" I hear our singer, Flint yell from the other room. "I finally found one that isn't so expensive that we'll go bankrupt!"

Nadia, Jamie, and I all run into the room Flint's in. We've been trying to find somewhere we can go to write music forever, with no success. Most of the places we've called won't even take us, and the ones that would were extremely expensive. I don't really understand why we have to go anywhere, but Flint thinks it'll be good for us. But he's not the one who has to take five guitars and a keyboard with him. That should be fun to unload out of the car.

"It's called the 'Arrowleaf Bed and Breakfast', correct?" Flint says into the phone, after taking his hand off of the receiver. Our drummer, Nadia, and I laugh at how professional he sounds. He's absolutely nothing like that in real life. "Alright, we'll be there."

"Finally!" Jamie yells, throwing his hands in the air. I'm not quite as relieved as he is. I was kind of hoping we wouldn't find a place, and that we would just end up staying here. I really, really don't like the idea of staying in a stranger's house.

"When do we have to be there?" I ask, and Flint looks at the ground. I have a feeling I won't like his answer, very much.

"Uh...tomorrow, actually," he says with a nervous laugh. Great, thanks Flint. You totally didn't make this ten times harder than it already is. "We might want to start packing, by the way..."

"Ugh," Nadia says as she starts to walk out. "I'll be trying to cram everything into one suitcase, in less than an hour! Thanks for the notice, Flint."

"I'll come help you," Jamie says, following Nadia out of the room. We're not really sure if they're a couple or not, but they spend almost every minute of every day together, so you start to wonder...

"Flint," I say, sitting down on the couch. "What if they're crazy psycho killers?"

"What?" Flint says, looking at me as if I'm the crazy psycho killer. I don't know how this hasn't crossed his mind.

"Well, they would have to be completely insane to let four strangers stay with them for seven months, don't you think?"

"I guess we'll find out," Flint says with a smirk.

"Maybe I don't want to find out," I mutter. "What's wrong with here?"

"Would you rather write music here, in this city with a bunch of country singers, or the folk music capital of the world?"

"Whatever," I say with a sigh. Yay, I get to spend months with old people. I'm so excited.


Nadia

"They're going to find out," Jamie says as he sits on the edge of my bed. I'm not so sure about that.

"We've lived here together for a year and they haven't," I say as I start shoving clothes into my suitcase.

"It's only a matter of time," Jamie points out and I roll my eyes. He has such a pessimistic approach on everything. It drives me completely insane.

"Why does it matter if they did?" I ask Jamie and he looks at me like I'm an idiot. Like the answer to this question is common knowledge that everyone in the entire world knows the answer to, except for me.

"Because if they did then..." I can tell Jamie also doesn't know the answer to the question. "They might kick us out of the band."

"Whatever you say," I reply, agreeing once again to keep our relationship a secret. Sometimes I wonder if I should still be with Jamie. If we broke up, the whole band would fall apart. If I told him that, the whole band would fall apart. It's a lose, lose situation.

"Lets just enjoy it while it lasts, okay?" Jamie says as I pull more clothes out of my closet. I cram them into my suitcase without even bothering to fold them.

"Okay," I say and sit on his lap. He pulls me in for a kiss and I wrap my hands around his neck. Then I remember, this is why I'm still with him.


Dakota

"Are they here, yet?" I ask as I walk downstairs. I smooth my grey dress out, and make sure my brown hair is in the right position as I pass the mirror in the hallway. I figured I should try to make a good impression on them, since every day after this, I'll look like complete crap. I actually bothered to put makeup on today, which happens once in a blue moon.

"Not yet, dear, why?" my mom says and takes her apron off. I grab Wildflower and he squirms as I lift him into my arms. Wildflower is an odd name for a cat, let alone a boy cat, but it's better than Cinderella, which is what I wanted to name him. My twelve year old mind didn't process the fact that naming him that was weird.

"Excited?" my dad asks me with a wink. Owning one of the "most romantic B&B's in Arkansas" (as various magazines put it) has made everything seem like an opportunity for me to hook up with someone. The odd thing is, that he's okay with it. Actually, he wants it to happen. Me being a twenty-three year old virgin certainly isn't either of my parent's choices.

"Maybe I am," I say with a small laugh. Wildflower claws at my just-curled, brown hair, and I move his paw away. Curling my hair doesn't happen often, either.

The doorbell rings and I jump. Suddenly, I'm nervous. I set Wildflower on the ground, and realize his jet-black fur has gotten stuck to my sweaty palms. I wipe them off on the back of the couch, and my dad laughs at me.

"Not funny," I mutter as my mother opens the door. Four people stand there.

"Welcome!" my mom says and motions for them to come inside. "I'm Andi, and this is my husband, Jeremy." She and my dad shake the band's hands.

"I'm Dakota," I say quietly.

"Flint." A man with light brown hair, covered by a black beanie says as he shakes my hand, with his finger-less gloved, hands. Gee, they sure wear a lot of black...

"Nadia," the only girl member, with enough dark eye makeup for three people. I notice her dark hair is tinted a plum, and her nails are the same color.

"I'm Jamie," a man with blond hair says. He's dressed completely in black, down to his black, lace-up boots. Freckles dot his nose, which is ironic considering the rest of his look.

"Alex," the last man says, his voice barely audible. He has extremely dark brown hair, almost black. Black glasses frame his blue-green eyes. The hand Alex isn't shaking my hand with is holding an acoustic guitar case. I'm interested to know what kind of music they play, considering their look.

The girl clears her throat, and looks at Alex's and I's still intertwined fingers. I guess we didn't let go at the time were supposed to. Out of the corner of my eye, I can see my parents, as well as the rest of the band, stiffing a laugh. Alex and I quickly pull our hands away, both turning bright red.

"I-um...I'll show you to your rooms now," I say quickly, feeling my face getting warmer. I hope this awkwardness doesn't last the entire time they're here.

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