The Arrangement

Cassie Morris is an aspiring actress, though she struggles to land a successful role. After another failed audition, the role of a lifetime falls into her life. Does she seize the opportunity, finally achieve her lifelong dream even if it goes against every moral she's ever held herself to? Can she handle being attached at the hip to someone she despises?

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14. Who Is She?

Due to how late at night it was, I tried to sneak quietly back into the apartment. I also wanted to avoid talking to Nancy, but I wasn't sure if that was possible. Although as I tiptoed through the front door, I noticed that all of the lights were off. So maybe I was off the hook, for tonight at least.

 

Of course as I made it to my bedroom door, I heard her yell out my name from her own bedroom. I sighed as I heard the patter of her feet, running from her bedroom and through the living room towards me. “Hey,” I said with a smile as I turned around.

 

“We need to talk,” she said in a serious tone with an excited smile on her face. She grabbed my hand and practically yanked me back through the living room and onto the couch. “Tell me everything.”

 

I opened my mouth to speak, but no sound came out. What do I tell her? That it's all bullshit? That I'm being paid off to pretend that I'm in love with a douchebag? “There's not much to tell,” I finally said with a sheepish smile.

 

She glared at me, knowing damn well that I was full of shit. “Oh, come on,” she muttered, crossing her arms over her chest. “You're suddenly dating one of the biggest pop stars in the world, and act like it's nothing? How did it happen?”

 

I decided to give her the same bullshit story that I had given everyone at dinner; he came in for drinks one night, and the rest was history.

 

“Holy shit,” she murmured, an enthusiastic smile spreading from ear to ear. “It's like something out of a fucking movie!” she laughed, which was followed by my own nervous laughter. “Did he buy you that?” she asked suddenly, looking down at my outfit with wide eyes.

 

I glanced down, suddenly remembering I never changed back into my own clothes. Which were still at Justin's. Shit. “Oh, yeah,” I muttered, playing with the hem of my dress. “He's pretty insistent on buying me all this new stuff,” I lied. Which wasn't totally untrue; Scooter had been insistent on the new clothes. That was kinda the same thing, right?

 

“Good thing we're best friends!” she laughed. “I definitely need a new wardrobe.”

 

I chuckled nervously but didn't say anything. Not once had she ever referred to me as her best friend, let alone acted like it. But now that I'm with a celebrity, and have new expensive clothes...she's my best friend? “I don't even know if I'll keep it,” I told her, which was true. I didn't want clothes that cost more than my half of the rent. “It's just too expensive, I'm scared I'd ruin it.”

 

“Oh, you have to keep it!” she exclaimed, her hand on her chest like I had personally offended her. “It would be rude not to. But if you really don't want them, I'll take them off your hands!” she giggled. It was hard to tell if she was joking or not.

 

I scoffed. “You would be drowning in these,” I laughed. “You're a toothpick compared to me.”

 

“I could have them altered, it's no big deal,” she laughed. Again, I couldn't tell if she were serious or not.

 

“Right,” I muttered. “Well, I'm gonna go to bed,” I told her as I stood up and stretched. “It's late, and I have to open the bar tomorrow. Night.” Without another word, I turned and walked back to my room. Thankfully she didn't argue, but I could still feel her eyes burning holes into my back as I walked back into my room.

 

The rest of the night consisted of me tossing and turning in bed, counting down the hours until I had to get up in the morning. I couldn't sleep because for whatever reason, Nancy's behavior had really thrown me off. Did she really wanna be in the spotlight that bad, where she would pretend to be my best friend? And did she really think that, even if we were best friends, that I would make Justin buy her expensive stuff too? And if she was already acting like that, how would other people react to me?


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I woke up in the morning to the sound of my alarms blaring at me. With a loud groan, I slapped around the nightstand until I managed to hit the snooze button. After hardly getting any sleep, I wanted nothing more than to stay in bed all day.

 

I grabbed my phone as I headed for the bathroom to begin getting ready for work, and realized I had an unread text from Justin.

 

Justin: I've got a radio interview at the KIIS station at 9. Think you can make it?

 

I glanced up at the time, which read 8:52 AM before quickly typing out a reply.

 

Me: I can't, I have to open the bar

 

I set my phone down on the bathroom counter as I began getting ready, but my text tone soon went off with another text, no doubt from Justin.

 

Justin: you should at least listen if you can, it's on 94.1

 

Me: okay

 

I smiled softly as I typed out a short reply. For whatever reason, it felt nice to be included. Even though I knew he was asking me to come just because I signed a contract. Either way, I pulled up the radio app on my phone, and set the station to 94.1

 

Even though I had to endure a few cheesy pop songs and annoying ads as I got ready, finally there was Ryan Seacrest’s voice echoing throughout my bathroom

 

“Alright!” he said cheerfully. “So we got Justin Bieber in the studio. Justin, how you been doing, man?”

 

“Pretty good,” I heard Justin's deep voice answer smoothly. “You know, can't really complain.”

 

“That's good,” Ryan answered, and I could hear the smile in his voice. “Now you've gotten into some trouble lately, could you talk about that a little?”

 

And suddenly I could practically hear the tension through the radio. Justin cleared his throat uncomfortably. “Well... I've kind of been in a dark place,” Justin admitted, totally surprising me. “I've made a lot of mistakes. I apologize for that. But, I, um... I've got a good head on my shoulders now, I'm trying to be better.”

 

I stared down at the phone in disbelief; I'd never heard something so deep and raw come from him. It was hard to tell if if was the truth or not.

 

“That's really good to hear,” Ryan said, sounding as surprised as I felt. “Now recently you've been seen out with a new girl,” Ryan laughed, a sly tone in his voice.

 

“Yeah,” Justin chuckled, cutting in. “Yeah, I've recently started seeing someone.”

 

Before Justin could even continue, Ryan interrupted with an excited chuckle. “C'mon, tell us all about her! Who is she?” he asked.

 

A weird emotion invaded my gut as I smiled to myself; it was a strange feeling having someone publicly gush over you. Justin laughed again. “Yeah, her name is Cassie, she's a super sweet girl,” he said adoringly. “We've been seeing each other a few weeks now. I definitely think she's got a part in...shaping me into a better man,” he said gently, emotion raw in his voice again. I was again surprised at the turn this interview had taken.

 

“I'm happy for you, Justin,” Ryan said back sweetly. “That's awesome to hear. Valentine's Day is coming up, you got any big plans for that?” he asked.

 

Oh, crap. I had totally forgotten Valentine's Day even existed, it's been so long since I ever even celebrated it.

 

“Oh, that's a surprise,” Justin laughed. “She's listening to this, we can't talk about it,” he said, earning another laugh from Ryan.

 

“Well you've got a lot of stuff coming up,” Ryan said, changing the subject. “You've um...got a birthday coming up soon in a few weeks, right?”

 

“Yeah,” Justin answered, “about a month. I'll be 23 on March 1st.”

 

“You're growing up,” Ryan laughed. “ And you've also got a tour coming up, right? March 9th, isn't it?”

 

“Yes,” Justin said excitedly. “The Purpose Tour kicks off March 9th in Seattle, we're all super excited about it.”

 

“What about Cassie?” Ryan asked. “Is she gonna hit the road with you guys?”

 

Justin laughed softly. “Well, we've talked about it. And she's gonna come to as many shows as she can,” Justin explained. “We'll fly her out whenever we can, but she's got a job in LA, so she won't be able to come to every show. She's been awesome and super supportive about the whole thing.”

 

“That's really good to hear, man,” Ryan said sweetly. And suddenly, they were done. Ryan said a quick goodbye after thanking Justin for being on the show, then it quickly went into more ads and cheesy pop songs.

 

Since I couldn't be there with him, I typed out a quick text message to him. Me: You did really good :)

 

I wasn't sure what else to say but that seemed appropriate. After a few minutes, my phone buzzed again with another text from Justin.

 

Justin: thanks babe ;)

 

I chuckled as I set my phone back down. I finished getting ready for the day with a smile on my face, and butterflies in my stomach.

 

 

 

Author's Note: you guys i am sooooo sorry it's been so long. i've had a lot of stuff going on lately and haven't been able to post, so i am so soooo sorry. but, ive been doing a lot of writing! to make up, i'm going to go ahead and post chapter 15 in a few minutes, and i'll be posting more soon. thank you guys so much for being faithful and reading my stories, it means the world! ♥

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