Common Ground

Childhood friends, turned more, turned upside down

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25. Stressed Out

Bethany:

I woke up later Monday afternoon and pretty much jumped out of bed to make coffee so I could get started on my school work. I slept later than I wanted but I really wanted to stay ahead of everything. I was just so exhausted from this weekend I didn’t bother setting alarms and figured I would wake up when I did but this was still later than I wanted.

“You seem preoccupied.” I looked up and half smiled at Claire.

“Yeah I guess you could say that…”

“What’s on your mind?”

“I don’t know…Trevor was acting all funky this weekend like…I don’t know how to describe it. Like not towards me but towards the music and everything…”

“That sounds unlike him.” Claire agreed.

“That’s what I thought. I mean, you could tell he was excited but at the same time he was just off. I don’t know…he never said anything to me and with how crazy the weekend was I didn’t want to hound him for answers but I just hope he’s okay, you know?”

“Of course. But your coffee is ready, has been for a couple minutes and maybe you should get started on some school work.”

“That’s the plan…thanks.” Claire nodded before grabbing her keys and heading off to work, leaving me alone. I sat down on the couch with all my stuff getting started on my math work. I was dreading everything because I still felt so drained, even with the coffee. My mind was still spinning due to how Trevor had been all weekend and I just…I felt like death.

 

Trevor:

“Are you okay? You’ve been acting weird all weekend?” Matt asked me at my locker that I was half asleep on.

“Bro, not even close.”

“What’s been going on?”

“I don’t know…nothing is really going on I just have this weird feeling that things aren’t going to be this way for a long time…”

“What do you mean by this way?” Matt asked, sounding confused.

“I mean like…I feel like everything is going to take off so much quicker than we all planned. I mean, yeah, we had that shot a few months ago but between Bethany and how much she busts her ass for us and Caroline actually being on top of her shit I just feel like things are really going to start changing. Call it a gut feeling or whatever but it’s making me nervous as fuck. I don’t know why I have these feelings though since it’s only been one weekend.”

“So you’re just scared of how quickly things are changing and could be changing?”

“Yeah I guess so. I mean, this is all happening so quick and it’s just really hitting me now I guess.”

“Yeah but it’s also great.”

“It is great and I try to keep telling myself that but I’m still so freaked out by all of this. Like I figured by the time we actually started to make progress we’d be damn near graduation, not only almost halfway through our junior year. I mean, look at all that’s happened this year? Bethany moved in, she joined the band, she got all our friends involved in the band to help us out, got us a better manager, got us travelling gigs and shows and…like it’s moving so quick.”

“Don’t forget you finally got Bethany.” Matt joked.

“How could I possibly forget?” I half smiled and shook my head.

“Look, just focus on the good and just…this is what we wanted, right? We’ve talked about it since we were kids so don’t let the change scare you. Anyway, I think Bethany said she had our next cover song and was finishing it up today so…we have something new to practice tonight.”

“Okay…” I said as the bell rang. We both groaned before trudging off to class.

At lunch, Shannon and Drew were showing me, Matt, Tim, and Alex all the new things they added to the website while we were spending so much time on the bus. Bethany’s page was getting more hits and the new cover and our tour blog that Drew threw out idea wise last minute was killing it already. The views and subscriptions were flying through the roof quicker than I ever thought possible. It was insane. Shannon added a merch link as well for all the leftover merch since Bree and her classmates were still pumping shit out like crazy, we were getting overloaded with it.

I was on and off texting Bethany throughout the day just to see how her day was since I missed her. I may have seen her all weekend but I felt like I barely did at the same time with how crazy everything was and I knew I was acting funny and wanted to talk to her about it since she always knew what the right thing to say was. I just missed being able to talk to her. This week was just all too crazy to have a conversation, and the moments we had the time, we were sleeping.

“You looked like you need a fucking nap.” Emily said, joining me in the library during my study class.

“Oh yeah, I do.” I said, looking up from the circles I was just mindlessly drawing in my notebook.

“I do too, and I pretty much had the easiest job this weekend…sell clothes. But it was the best weekend ever.”

“Yeah it was great.”

“What’s wrong?”

“Eh just stuff I wanna talk to Beth about. I talked to Matt already but I just really want to tell her what’s on my mind and I know she knows something is wrong because I was weird all weekend. I just never got the chance to say anything this weekend.”

“Yeah we all noticed. We all just kept our mouths shut since it was such a crazy weekend.”

“Yeah, I’m kind of happy we have this whole weekend off to just relax, you know?”

“Yeah, tell me about it.”

“Hey guys.” We turned and saw Vienna and Logan walk over and join us.

“Hey guys…what’s up?”

“Oh just dying.” Vienna joked, making me and Emily laugh.

“Yeah, you guys all look like fucking death.” Logan pointed out. “I’ve never seen so many people look like death like most of you guys do. I mean I know it’s Monday but damn, this weekend must have been wild for you guys to all look the way you do. I’m kind of jealous I missed this whole weekend, though your show on Friday was fucking killer.”

“Thanks man…but no, there was not a single party. It was just that hectic.” I pointed out.

“Well fuck, that’s boring.” Logan rolled his eyes and shook his head.

“It was just too busy to do much of anything else. We were on the bus if we weren’t performing.” I said, shrugging.

“The place was fucking wild.” Emily said, agreeing. “I had like the easiest job and I feel like death so I don’t even want to know what Trevor is feeling like.”

“Seriously though.” Vienna added. “Those people outside3 the venue were fucking crazy at every show; even the one on Sunday. Like it’s a fucking Sunday, you would think it would be mildly toned down but no, not even close.”

“Kind of happy I wasn’t there now. That and Bethany didn’t want to include me.” Logan stated.

“Dude, what part in any of this did you want? You just came for the after parties.” I said, laughing.

“Also true, but it was fucking weird only having a few friends around for the weekend and not everyone.”

“Yeah I can see how that would be weird; be a fucking groupie then. They don’t have any of those, and they don’t need to do shit.” Emily joked.

“Yeah, fuck that.” Logan said, laughing. The bell rang again, causing Emily, Vienna, and I to groan and make our way out of the library slowly.

 

Bethany:

I finished math and most of my elective courses so I finished up working on that new cover that Alex and I started working on while on the tour bus. For the most part I just had to finish up the music for the chorus and give Trevor, Matt, and I all parts while breaking down the song. Alex did most of the music but wanted to see how well I could handle the, in his words, “best part.” I was slowly giving myself a headache with it all while sitting downstairs playing the guitar trying to figure out what was best and where and I wanted to cry. I needed to get all this built up stress fucking out of my system.

“Hey, you seemed to have lost track of time.” I looked up with tears in my eyes to see Matt. “Dude, are you okay?”

“Oh my god please don’t tell me I missed our gym date…”

“No, I just got home. But seriously, are you okay?”

“I need to get out of this house. I’m too stressed out right now.”

“Alright well I’ll be in the car, just get ready and we can go, okay?” I nodded and followed him upstairs where I saw Trevor with Drew and Shannon in the kitchen.

“Hey babe, you good?”

“I’m stressed, I wanna nap, and I hate everyone.”

“What’s wrong?” Shannon asked.

“Can I just hate life in peace?!” I snapped. Shannon’s eyes went wide and I suddenly felt bad. “I’m sorry, I’m just not having a good day.”

“No girl, you’re good. Don’t worry about it.”

“I’ll meet you in the car.” Matt said again, grabbing my shoulder. I ran upstairs, almost on the verge of tears as I changed into workout clothes. When I went to meet Matt in the car, I could feel Trevor, Shannon, and Drew all looking at me but I didn’t want to deal with it right now. I wanted to get out of the damn house.

“Okay, so what’s wrong?” Matt asked when I got into his car.

“I’m just so stressed! I mean this weekend was crazy, Trevor is all sorts of off and he never told me what’s wrong, I overslept like crazy so I barely made it through one main course today, and the stupid cover is giving my so many issues. I think I finally finished it but still, it was stressing me out to get the chorus just right and I just feel so overwhelmed…”

“Girl, take a breath. Everything with Trevor is fine, he talked to me and he said he would talk to you tonight. It is not anything bad, he’s just stressed too. I’m sure the cover is great, I’m sure your school work is just fine, and now we can go work all that extra stress out at the gym, okay?”

“He told you what’s wrong?”

“Nothing is wrong, Beth. He is literally just as stressed as you are just in his own way.”

“Promise?”

“Have I ever lied to you?”

“When I asked you to talk to Trevor to see if he liked me you claimed you did and I found out you didn’t so yes, you have.”

“Oh come on? You’re going to hold that over my head now?”

“A little, yeah.” I cracked a small smile and Matt laughed.

“Fine, but besides all that, have I ever lied to you?”

“No, you haven’t.”

“Exactly so just breathe and let’s get you inside so we can be gross as fuck at practice, okay?”

“Okay…” I said as he hopped out of the car and headed inside the gym.

 

Trevor:

“Is she always like this when she gets stressed?” Shannon asked.

“She has to be so beyond stressed that stress doesn’t even begin to cover how stressed out she is to get like that…” I said slowly.

“Well fuck, then I don’t want to know what she’s dealing with.” Drew said, shaking his head.

“Yeah when she gets like that you just need to let her like punch some shit, run it out, stuff like that. So the gym is probably the best place for her right now.”

“With your brother?” Shannon asked.

“What? Is that weird?”

“I mean, no but yes at the same time.”

“How is it even weird? Her and my brother have been going to the gym together for months so it’s not like this is anything new; they did this before we even started dating.”

“I don’t know. That’s like part why it’s not weird, that and she did grow up with your family but like I can’t picture any other scenario where like I would be okay with it if I was you.”

“It’s because you’re a girl.” Drew pointed out.

“What does that even mean?” Shannon asked.

“You’re always fucking paranoid. That and you’ve always had trust issues.” I tried to hide my smirk while Shannon was ready to go at it with Drew over this.

“Guys, stop before it even begins; seriously. It’s not a big deal, I know how close they are and I trust them both, okay? We’re good now; it isn’t your relationship Shannon so just chill.”

“Oh I am chill, thank you.” Shannon said, rolling her eyes.

“Besides, he like’s Kaylee.”

“So that’s why he never pays attention to Sophie…”

“It all makes sense now, right?” I pointed out, laughing.

“Well shit, Sophie won’t like that.” Drew said. “I mean, she’s been trying to get Matt’s attention since Matt broke up with crazy bitch.” 

“Yeah, I know. But Kaylee likes Matt too so I think she’s extra screwed on this one.” I said, shrugging.

“I’m not telling her this conversation happened. I don’t want know what she ends up turning into if she finds this shit out. Maybe she’ll just get over him.” Shannon said, looking back down at her laptop.

“I don’t think any of us do.” Drew agreed.

“Great, let’s drop this then and get back to whatever the hell you two are here for.” I said, laughing.

Once Bethany and Matt got back from the gym, we spent the whole practice breaking down the new cover and working on it. I was mainly working on lyrics while everyone else was working on the music and whatnot. Since Bethany had gone over this so many times she pretty much had the lyrics down to begin with. I caught myself watching her more than focusing on anything else. She looked so drained and stressed; you could see it all over her face even though she was trying to hide it. I wanted to talk to her about it all but I just didn’t even know how to begin.

After practice we went right upstairs; her to the shower and me lying in bed working on writing a new song. I felt like at this point I had to be working 24/7 and that thought alone stressed me out. I wanted to just relax but I needed to get some thoughts out on paper, you know?

“Hey you…” I said when I saw Bethany walk back in from the corner of my eye.

“Hey.”

“I feel like we haven’t talked all week and weekend.”

“Well we really didn’t.” She pointed out as she brushed her hair.

“Yeah, right…the cover was really good…” I said, getting nervous.

“Thanks; working on a new song?”

“Yeah I guess so…”

“Why all the hesitation?” She asked me, crawling into bed, staring me down.

“I don’t know. I mean, I do…I’m just really fucking stressed. With so much change all so quickly I feel like I have more pressure on me than ever before and it’s freaking me out which is probably stressing me out even more.”

“Trev…is this why you’ve been weird all weekend?”

“Well, yeah…I have this weird gut feeling things are about to change drastically and soon and I just feel like I want to hold onto this for just a little bit longer. Like you and I, how the band is, all our friends, school; I know this is all I wanted, this is all we all ever wanted but I never thought we would blow up so quick with just a little help and I guess I’m just a little scared. I don’t know.”

“Why didn’t you just say you were scared? Instead you ignored me pretty much all weekend. I mean I know we didn’t have all the time in the world to talk but you still could’ve found time to tell me…”

“I know but I didn’t want to stress you out with my stress and you already seemed stressed enough. Plus we just had made up from a fight and I didn’t want to cause any more arguments or anything…”

“Well you stressing and not telling me stressed me out but I guess I can see where you are coming from; it is pretty crazy right now. I just wish you told me…”

“I know babe, and I wanted to but I wanted us to be able to actually sit down and talk and not just have the talk in the middle of all the crazy, you know?”

“Yeah, I guess I do. I prefer things that way too. Is there anything else bothering you? Because you really did look wildly stressed this weekend.”

“I mean not telling you added to the stress but no, that’s literally it.” She smiled at me and laid her head on my chest and I sighed, missing this feeling; feeling beyond relaxed with my favorite person, my girl, right here with me, holding her close.

“I missed you…” She whispered. I kissed her head and started playing with the tips on her hair.

“I missed you too babe…” And with that, she was asleep and I’m sure I wasn’t awake to long after that.

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