Just an Illusion, Side A

By: D. Kelly

Present Day – Two Years After The Tour

Stories are meant to be told. I firmly believe that, or I wouldn’t have pursued a career in writing. And yet, some stories should never be told for a variety of reasons. My story—OUR story—is on the cusp of both of those beliefs. When I first met them, it was quickly decided I would write their story. And their story is a great story, one I want to tell with all my heart and soul. One their fans truly deserve after all this time. The only problem is, in order to tell their story, I have to tell mine, too, since they’ve become so intricately entwined. I’m not sure I’m ready to share my story yet. My heart may not survive if I do.

As I release an exhausted sigh, I pause momentarily and deeply inhale the scent of the Pacific Ocean. The beautiful sunset’s reflection shines on the waves, looking like a million shimmering suns. The silence in the house is all encompassing and allows me to take a few moments to appreciate life. It’s funny how so many things can change over the course of a few years. How one person’s life can go from private to public in the blink of an eye. How easily we transition beyond our humble beginnings, instead winding up in the lap of luxury. How fate always seems to find a way to intervene.

When I started this journey, I lived in a small, one-bedroom apartment in Encino, California. And now, I’m living most people’s dream. My home—well, technically it’s their home—is a beautiful beachfront house with every amenity I could have ever dreamed of. But at the end of the day, it’s just a house, and a house isn’t a home until you make it one. Even though it’s been over two years since I officially moved in, making this house my home is still a feat I haven’t quite yet mastered. If I accept this house, I have to accept the realities that come with it—realities I’m not ready to acknowledge.

Realities I should have long ago accepted.

His ultimatum tonight threw me into a tailspin. He knows he’s making me relive the best and worst days of my life. It’s not his fault; they’re his, too, and he’s waited long enough. He genuinely wants to make this a home for us, but he’s worried my heart may not completely be his.

Is it?

I love him. I’ve always loved him, but being in love with someone is different than loving them. The only way to figure it out for sure is to write THE story—his, mine, theirs, and ours.

I turn away from the window, fire up my laptop, and uncork a bottle of my favorite Pinot Grigio, filling the largest wine glass I own. It’s cool, and the alcohol warms me going down. If I’m going to do this, I need something to soothe me. Especially when I have to read his notes and pull all of Belle’s articles. I need those most of all for this story to be truly complete.

It’s just a story, Amelia, you write them all the time. It doesn’t have to be published; you’re just purging it from your system and getting it on paper. But if anyone ever got their hands on it … If they find out you finally wrote it, there’s no coming back.

Closing my eyes, I wage the internal battle with myself. He gave me a deadline; I have seventy-two hours to answer his proposal. Three days. I’m not quite sure if three days is long enough for my heart to catch up with my mind. It doesn’t matter; he’s serious this time.

The boys left and went camping, giving me time to do this, to gather myself. He was hesitant to leave me alone, knowing how hard it will be for me. Eventually, I convinced him I’d be fine. I’m not so sure now, but it doesn’t matter. It’s time to put on my big girl panties and give him an answer. Which leaves me only one thing left to do.

It’s time to write our story.

Belle’s First BAD Announcement Three Years Ago Slammers!

It’s your girl Belle here, and I’ve got some freaking amazing news to share with you! This girl and her best friend Mel are heading out for a night with BAD. That’s right, you heard me—Bastards and Dangerous are in town, and I’ve got a feeling I’m going to have a super scoop for you all tomorrow. Keep your fingers crossed these backstage passes will shed some light on the super-secret info BAD has been teasing us all with for weeks!

Don’t forget, live today like there’s no tomorrow!

Xs and Os, Belle

The Day It All Began

“Amelia! Are you really wearing that to the BAD concert?”

Bastards and Dangerous, otherwise known as BAD, are all of the above from what I hear. I’m not a fan. I’ve got eclectic tastes in music, but they’re just a little too loud for me. Since I’m not a fan, I don’t feel the need to wear the overly obvious I’m a groupie BAD shirt Belle brought over for me. Instead, I’m wearing my best curve-hugging jeans, my favorite black Converse, and a dark blue V-neck sweater. The concert is at The Greek, an outdoor venue. Our nights have been hovering at fifty degrees all week, which is unusually cold for Southern California, especially for late August. Global warming at its finest, but I’m not going to freeze so I can fit in with the crowd.

“Yes, Belle, this is exactly what I’m wearing. Don’t like it? I’ll happily bow out and you can give my ticket to someone else,” I answer with a smug smile.

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