7. chapter seven


I parked my black range rover in the car park infront of R&J HQ, I wore a pair of denim skin tight jeans and a grey jumper, black shades covered my tired eyes and my hair was sporting a messy topknot, since I couldn't be bothered to wash it for the meeting.

I walked into the large and familiar building that was spread out over a series of floors, making it extreemely tall, and made my way to Joannes office.

As I pushed the door open I saw Joanne stood at a coffee machine located close to her desk, another unrecognisable woman sat seated behind the desk on a large black chair placed next to Joannes

"Apple! Come in!" Joanne said merrily, making me highly surprised since I was expecting her to be upset about the bad press i had managed to rake in, especially since I was supposed to be doing the opposite for promo

I slipped off my shades and tucked them into the side pocket of my jeans, before taking a seat infront of Joannes desk. I felt like I was at a principals office in high school.

"Hi Apple, nice to meet you, Im Kate" The other lady spoke from behind Joannes desk

"Nice to meet you too" I answered, a little confused as I didn't understand why Joanne had company during a publicity meeting- which are supposed to be top secret.

Jo began to stir her coffee with a small spoon that lay on the side of one of the counters in her office, making an annoying ding sound which only aggravated my hangover headache even more. She took a small sip before sitting down beside Kate at her desk

"Okay, We'll just wait for Luke and then we will star-"

"Luke?!" I interrupted

"Yes Luke" Joanne giggled "Apple darling, We couldn't of held this meeting without Luke-obviously"

I knitted my eyebrows together

"Besides who did you think Kate was? Some random stranger I'd invited in for a chat?" Joanne mocked again

"I'm Luke's publicist" Kate chuckled, introducing herself for the first time

I shot her a forced smile, only to be polite, however inside I only felt confused, I couldn't help but wonder why Luke had to be here, I understand that this was something between us both- but this wasn't usually a regular thing that happened- publicity usually involved spiteful tactics and was generally a separate thing when associated with two celebrities being handled by different companies, it was definitely not normally something two publicity managers would come together about

My wondering thoughts were interrupted by a slamming of the office door behind me, I turned around, and a messy haired Luke stumbled inside

"Sorry I'm late" He apologised

"Its fine love, take a seat" Kate replied, motioning her eyes at the chair next to me

"Nice to see you again" Luke said, as he sat down in the chair beside me

I gave him a civil glance, and he ruffled his hair between his finger tips and played with the rips in his jeans awkwardly as we awaited for our publicists to begin speaking-since they seemed to just be observing the scene quietly

"Okay, As you have both seen, the media are having a field day with the pictures taken last night and the budding romance between you two" Joanne said

"There is no budding romance" I snapped harshly, still in denial of any romantic feelings towards Luke

"Well thats the way it comes across" Joanne replied sympathetically

I took a huff out "I'm so sorry Joanne, and you, Kate- we must of made your job so hard"

"Hard?" Kate laughed

I exchanged a confused look with Luke, who seemed to be as confused with the situation as myself.

"Honey, If anything you've made our jobs a million times easier" She said, as she read our confused expressions started speaking again

"You both have albums being released extreemely soon, any publicity is good publicity! These photos are everywhere, and will be all over the news tomorrow! This is great!"

Joanne nodded her head in agreement with Kate

"Everyone loves a teenage romance, especially between two successful stars like yourselves! The media are going to love this story, your faces are going to be printed everywhere, Its gold! Your going to be gathering more and more followers and fans-something that will be so beneficial to you both in the up and coming weeks" She said

Luke let out a small laugh

"We should make out more often" Luke joked playfully, nudging my shoulder against his. Although the comment made me slightly uncomfortable I couldn't help but be amused.

"Well its funny you say that" Jo said, taking a pause as if what was to follow was going to be serious

"We think that it would benefit you both if you faked a relationship together, you know- go on some fake dates, share a house, tweet something misleading or 'cute' and romantic once in a while-just get the media excited about the pair of you" She said

My facial expression was blank, and I wasn't able to fully process Jo and Kate's request

"Wait, You want us to live together?!" I suddenly asked as the highlighted piece of information stood out to me that little bit more than the rest "Isn't that abit extreme?!"

"Apple if you choose to go ahead with this, we will be making sure that your being seen together whenever possible, this media story is going to be huge, if you want this to be believable your going to have to work with me" Jo said calmly

"You don't have to get your own place together, the boys are staying at a hired house in LA right now and theres more than enough rooms for you to stay aswell" Kate said slowly, telepathically asking for Luke's permission to let me stay there "At least that way you wont just be alone all the time" she continued

"So we just have to be like- Roomies?" I asked steadily

"Exactly!" The two publicists said

"I don't know about this- I'm sorry but I don't know if i could cope in a house with that band for a few hours- never mind a few weeks!"I said

Luke gasped, before grabbing his chest jokingly as he acted highly offended by the comment

"You could have a friend or two over aswell, its no big deal, we just need the press to think you two are getting all loved up" Kate answered

"And your sure-"

"Apple this is nothing more than a business opportunity! We're not asking you two to actually date! Or do anything your uncomfortable with infact, but this would really help us, and more importantly would higher both of your profiles" Joanne said-almost begging me to go ahead with the plan

I broke eye contact with her and looked at Luke

"Your being very quiet about this" I said

"I'm not exactly going to complain about having to live with a smoking hot pop star" Luke laughed

My cheeks burned up, and the two managers giggled

"Thats the spirit" Jo cheered, in a giggly fashion

"So what do you say?" Kate asked, the two publicists put all their focus into me, since Luke had basically already agreed, and i could almost feel them telepathically begging

I turned to face Luke and he opened his mouth into a massive cheesy grin

"Fine" I muttered

Joanne let out a rowdy cheer, before shaking hands with Kate as if she had just made the biggest business deal of the century

I exchanged awkward looks with Luke, he was smiling at me but I couldn't help but feel sick about the situation, I just felt confused, like I'd signed up for something I wasn't ready for and something I hadn't thought through, however I couldn't ponder for long, because after a pat on the back from Kate, Jo swung her arms around my neck

"I know this isn't really your thing, but you've done yourself such a favour" she assured me, before pressing her lips against my forehead. Since I was away from home a lot, Jo seemed to be the only motherly figure I had around, and hearing her reassurance soothed my nerves

"When will all this be happening? You know the moving in and stuff?" I questioned the managers infront of me, who already had their face buried in their phones

"You can move in whenever fits, ideally though it needs to be soon, especially since tomorrow people are going to be assuming your together-" Her sentences soon turned in to paragraphs, as she informed us about how we should from now on, whenever out in public, pretend we're dating.

"We will stir up some gossip and do some newspaper and magazine reports pronto" Kate finished

She looked at Joanne with her eyes squinted like her concentration levels were hitting the roof

"Anything iv forgot to say?" Kate asked

Joanne thought for a few seconds before beginning to speak "oooh one more thing! Since you two are a couple now" she said, pausing to throw a wink into the sentence "we are going to be scheduling for you to go on some dates-"

Luke slumped himself back into one of the chairs, he seemed to be impatient, and I guessed it was because the sudden wave of information was negatively affecting his hangover as much as it was mine

"Dates?" I questioned, Luke might of been able to sit back and take all this in easily, but this was a massive deal, I had hundreds of unanswered questions and I wanted to get to the bottom of them all- I wanted to know exactly what I was signing up for

"Yeah- little trips to cafes and the beach, just couple-y stuff, it just adds to the realistic element of it all" Jo clarified "Plus it drags all this out- it means the story won't just blow over and will keep it fresh, updated" she added

I nodded my head lightly

"Alls I will say is that it's going to be our job to make sure there's as many paparazzi's on these set up dates as possible, things might get a little overwhelming but you need to stay professional and in character!- If we are organising all this press it also means if your phone rings and we tell you it's time for your date, you need to be there as quickly as possible" she blubbered on

With a few extra pieces of key information, it was finally time for me to leave the business complex, Luke had to stay abit longer since Kate wanted to speak to him about something else, so I left the building alone.

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