Keep the Beat

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Chapter 9

“Whoever is knocking on the door, I am going to rip you apart!” I heard Jessica screech. I jumped up in my bed, wide eyed and alarmed.

“What the hell?” I spluttered, and Shannon rubbed her eyes. Jessica had rolled out of her bed, and stormed over to the door, yanking it open.

“What?” She screamed at the grinning Caleb, who was standing at the door holding handpicked daisies and primroses.

“Good morning beautiful ladies!” He smiled warmly, we all glared at him.

“Stop looking at me like that, I was being spontaneous.” He argued, and I rolled my eyes.

“Those better not be for me,” I sighed, gesturing to the flowers, “I’ve hay-fever.” Caleb rolled his eyes at me, tutting. He made his way around an angry Keara and over to me so that he could poke me on the head.

“They’re not for you, they’re for her.” He turned his back to me, and smiled at the two other girls who had their mouths wide open.

“Wait, this seriously has to be Shannon.” Jessica muttered sitting back onto her bed.

“They’re hardly for you Jessica, no offense.”

“They’re tacky anyway.”

Shannon eyed him, still in disbelief. “What the hell Caleb?”

He smirked slightly, and handed her the flowers which she took hesitantly. “Get dressed, something casual-ish. Meet me at the deck in ten minutes.”

He smirked again, and walked out of the cabin leaving a stunned Shannon lost for words. I covered my smile with my fist, and bit down to prevent the girlish squeal. Shannon glanced at me, uttering nonsense.

“Shut up and get dressed dude!” I yelled, and Jessica snorted.

“I don’t get what’s going on.” She whispered.

“Nothing’s going on yet, but there hopefully will be when you get back.” I muttered, and pushed her into the bathroom. “Wash, brush, mouthwash, straighten, dress!”

“You’re so bossy!”

“Don’t sass me!”

“You two are so weird.”

Shannon closed the door after her, and I took a the opportunity to let out my squeal. Jessica rolled her eyes at me and she flopped down onto her bed. “I’m going back to sleep, I need the energy to deal with Keara today.” She informed me.

“How can you go back to sleep at a time like this?”

“I thought you weren’t girly.” She teased from her position. I frowned and threw a pillow at her.

“I’m not being girly! I’m being an awesome person.”

Shannon finally came out of the bathroom after quick five minute scrub up session. “I still don’t get what’s going on.” She muttered, causing Jessica and I to simultaneously roll our eyes. And they make me out to be the dumb one?

Once Shannon was ready, with the flowers in her hand, she made her way out of the cabin and down the path towards the deck. I watched her go, as if I was a mother sending her child off to their first day at school. Once she was out of site, I looked around me and contemplated what I should do. I knew it was pointless to go back to bed and try to sleep after the excitement that morning, so instead I got changed and made my way out of my cabin and toward’s Kelly’s.

Surprisingly, she didn’t share a cabin with Chris. I knocked on her door repetitively until I heard an angry sigh from inside. “Come on Kelly, don’t leave me hanging here!” I whined, stomping my foot.

She opened the door and glared at me, before shutting it in my face again. “Well that was rude.” I grumbled, “Now unless you want me to break this door down and punch you in the face, I’d open the door and apologize for your lack of excitement.”

“You’re not supposed to be a morning person!” I heard her cry in distress.

“True that, but this morning is an exception.” I countered.

“Can’t you just go and annoy Chase?”

“He’s probably just throw something at me..”

“And I wont?”

“You’re too nice!”

The door opened again, and I was greeted with Kelly’s pissed off expression. “What do you want?”

“I want advice.” I stated, and pushed past her into her room.

“Wait, let me in.” I heard a voice call from outside the cabin. “I want advice too!”

“Go away Shane. I was here first!” I argued, stomping my foot while Kelly growled under her breath.

“But this is important.” He whined.

“Why are you up anyway?”

“Caleb made me get up and help him.”

“Just get inside.” Kelly snapped. I made my way over and sat on her bed. I really did need advice. “One of you start talking.”

“Me first,” I piped up, “so I got a text from Josh. He’s coming back sometime this week.”

“And what’s the problem?” Kelly replied the same time Shane muttered something along of the lines of ‘so much for best friends’.

“Well I love Josh to bits, like he’s awesome but-“

“Are you scared he’s going to become between you and Chase?”

“What no! Nothing can come between Chase and I.” I snapped defensively and frowned, “That didn’t sound as lame in my head.”

“It was sort of cute.” Shane shrugged, and Kelly nodded in agreement.

“Really? It wasn’t too cheesy?”

“Nah, but back to the Josh dilemma.” Shane clapped his hands, ushering me to continue.

“Right well. We all know that Josh is well.. A bit of a-“

“Asshole? Player? Fuckboy?” Kelly mused, and I shrugged in agreement.

“Well yeah, but my ship is finally sailing. And he who must not be named coming back isn’t going to help the ship. He’s going to be the iceberg.”

“Is your ship Shaleb?” Shane inquired, tilting his head to the side.

“Yes. Yes it is.”

Kelly rolled her eyes, and lay back on her bed. “First world problems.” She mumbled, “Okay, May this may be hard for you. But you have to stay out of it. Staying out of things is probably a foreign concept to you, but just try okay?”

I pouted, and crossed my arms stubbornly.

“Shane, what’s up?” Kelly turned to Shane, brushing down he pink pajama top.

“I like this person. But this person doesn’t like me back, and will never like me back, like ever.”

I furrowed my eyebrows, and wrapped my arm around him. “How do you know they’ll never like you back?”

“I just do. Anyway, I want to find out how you get over someone. I don’t care how, I just need to get over them.”

Kelly looked between us, and rubbed her hands together. “You all seem to be forgetting that I pined over my high school sweetheart for years! I am so not good with relationship advice!”

“That’s very true.” I nodded in agreement. “But I have a piece of advice for you Shane. There’s two ways of getting over a crush. You whether start hating them, or you get a crush on someone else.”

“But I don’t want to hate them!”

“Someone else it is then!”

Shane sighed, “I guess you’re right then.”

“Are you going to tell me who it is?” I asked softly, and he shook his head with a soft smile.

“Not yet.”

I smiled at him softly, and he patted my head. “But shouldn’t you be getting ready for your performance today?”

“I’m delaying any time needed to spent with Keara.”

“Understandable.”

“I’ll spit in her cornflakes if you want.”

“Keara we are not singing that!” I snapped for the umpteenth time. Keara’s song choice were terrible, worse than terrible they were tumble down a cliff worthy.

“Why not?” She whined, stomping her foot in frustration.

“Because it’s pretty woeful.” Jessica grumbled.

“And you know it’s bad when Jessica won’t sing it.” I groaned, and slumped onto the ground. “Come on man, you have to have some good songs. Like what happened to your usual Katy Perry and Rihanna songs? I’d even sing a freaking Rihanna song!”

“Just check out this list, and choose from it.” Jessica ordered, stuffing her paper into Keara’s hand.

We had left the organizing for our performance quite late. As in ‘a hour before the show’ late. We just didn’t want to have to deal with each other, and thought that all we had to do was pick a song and our parts. We didn’t think it would be this difficult. So we were sitting in the camp’s office, on the computer looking for songs.

“What about this one?” Keara suggested pointing the song out. I sighed in relief when I saw that it was actually a reasonable choice.

“I actually love that song.” I agreed, glancing at Jessica. “We’re doing this one.”

“I have the main lead.” Keara butted in, and I gritted my teeth.

“This is a team work exercise. Chris isn’t going to let it go until we work together, so there won’t be a ‘main lead’. We will all sing equal amounts.”

“I don’t be in bands.”

“Well I don’t like to be around stuck up bitches, but we can’t all get what we want!”

“I’m not stuck up!” Keara screeched, and I raised an eyebrow.

“Yo you need to chill.”

Jessica began to bang her head against the wall, “Why me?” She whined.

“Karma from last year?” I mused, suggestively causing her to glare daggers at me.

“Okay,” she pressed print on the computer, and printed out the lyrics to the song, “I will sing this part, May can sing this bit, Keara sings here and we all sing the chorus. Can you live with that?”

“Sir yes sir!” I shouted, with a mocking salute.

The door burst open, and Chase ran in out of breath. “The show is starting, and Chris wants you all there now.” He panted.

“You’re so unfit.” I informed, before skipping forward and intertwining our fingers. He lifted my hand to his lips and pecked it.

“You know, holding my hand doesn’t make it any less verbal assault.” He murmured against my fingers, before pulling me out the office and ignoring Keara’s snide remarks.

“Oh psst. You love anything I say.”

“Wow what an ego.”

“I learn from the best.”

Chase chuckled and wrapped his arm around me as we walked to the concert field. “I heard that Josh was coming back soon.”

“Yup.” I nodded awkwardly, “So I found out that I really dislike peanut butter, it’s like really dry and-“

“Don’t change the subject May!” He groaned, slowing his pace.

“There is no subject. Josh is a good friend of mine, but that’s it. I’ve completely friend-zoned him.” The five second of summer song started to play in my head, and I controlled my outburst of the lyrics.

Chase smirked slightly, “Wow I feel bad for the guy. You aren’t going to friend-zone me anytime soon right?”

I smiled coyly, “I’ll think about it.” We reached the concert field, Keara and Jessica closely following behind.

“You better get up there,” Chase mused, “before Chris kills you.”

“Such a dramatic way to die don’t you think?”

He snorted and pushed me away from him, towards the stage. Chris was waiting for us with his arms crossed. He eyed us carefully, “Are you ready?”

“As ready as we’ll ever be.” Jessica grumbled, and climbed onto the stage. The campers were already waiting in the field, and they were all looking up at us eagerly.

We each took our microphones that had been already set up, and I informed Max of what song we were singing. The music started, and I scanned the crowd. My eyes landed on Caleb who was standing close to Shannon looking very pleased with himself. Shannon was smiling softly, and I couldn’t help the ‘awe’ which slipped through my lips. The crowd looked at me wearily and I waved them off.

“I live my day as if it was the last

Live my day as if there was no past

Doin’ it all night, all summer

Doin’ it the way I wanna.” We glanced at each other to make sure all three of us were starting off at the same time, as we continued to sing the next few lyrics.

“Yeah Imma dance my heart out ’til the dawn
But I won’t be done when morning comes

Doin’ it all night, all summer

Gonna spend it like no other!”

“It was a crush.
But I couldn’t, couldn’t get enough.

It was a rush.
But I gave it up!
It was a crush.
Now I might have went and said too much!
But that’s all it was.
So I gave it up.” Jessica sang, swishing her hips to the beat.

“It was a crush,
I kept saying Imma stay in touch!
But that thing went bust.
So I gave it up!

No tricks, no bluff!

I’m just better off without them cuffs.

Yeah the sun won’t set on us.” Keara added, changing the versus around so that we could finish quicker.

“Went low, went high.

Still waters run dry.

Gotta get back in the groove!

I ain’t ever worry!

Went low, went high.
What matters is now.
Getting right back in the mood!” I sang.

“I live my day as if it was the last

Live my day as if there was no past

Doin’ it all night, all summer

Doin’ it the way I wanna.

Yeah Imma dance my heart out ’til the dawn
But I won’t be done when morning comes

Doin’ it all night, all summer

Gonna spend it like no other!” The crowd sang the chorus along with Keara.

“Now I’ve found another crush.

The lush life’s given me a rush!

Had one chance to make me blush.

Second time is one too late!” Jessica smirked at me, and I was about to continue but Keara interrupted.

“Now I’ve found another crush!
The lush life’s given me a rush.
Had one chance to make me blush.
Second time is one too late.” Keara sang the verse that was assigned to me, and I rolled my eyes at her inability to play as a team.

I looked up at the crowd to see them applauding us, but my eyes zeroed in on one person who was sitting upon the entrance gate, grinning. His blonde hair was the exact same as when I last saw it, and his piecing glistened in the sun. He winked at me. “Josh!” I cried, jumping off the stage and racing over to him. He chuckled at my enthusiasm and gave me a friendly hug.

Our friends made their way over to greet him and welcome him back. Yet they weren’t all welcoming. Caleb was shooting him the stink eye, while Chase looked bored of his existence.

I elbowed him in the stomach, and he rolled his eyes but nonetheless changed his expression into an attempted friendly one. “Behave.” I muttered.

“I’m a well mannered boy as long as he knows his place.” He mumbled back.

“The dominant alpha male doesn’t suit you, and frankly it pisses me off. I don’t belong to you, so stop acting like I’m some sort of toy.” I hissed.

His expression softened and his hand found his way to mine, and squeezed it. It was his way of apologizing and I excepted it.

“Don’t I get a hello?” A nasally voice came from behind Josh, and I peaked over his shoulder. Her hair was styled in the highest volume she could manage, and she still didn’t seem to take any of Jessica’s beauty tip.

“You’ve got to be shitting me!” I wailed, “Why me God? Why do you want me to be thrown out of this place for the use of violence?”

Chase groaned when he too saw who was waiting beside Josh, and soon after most of the campers sighed in disbelief.

“I feel so welcomed!” She tried to smirk, but the look didn’t suit her. She looked like an angry cat or something.

“I’ll welcome you with my fis-” I started, only to have Caleb stuff some grass into my mouth, causing Chase to burst out laughing.

“Caleb, god knows what was on that grass.” Shannon scolded him, yet kept a hold on me so that I wouldn’t bust my favorite person in the world and regret it later. After one last glare, I dropped his unhygienic act, and turned back to the witch and Josh.

“Guys, this is Stella. My new stepsister.” Josh gritted out, and we all shot him a sympathetic glance. Even Chase felt sorry for the guy.

Stella lived up to Keara’s ability to piss people off. We all glared at her until Jessica voiced all of our opinions. “How the hell did you get back here, you crazy psychotic bitch?”


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