This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
Hunter Brogan was one of five very beautiful boys. They weren’t actually brothers but, (and not by chance) they were five very talented, very pretty boys all born on the same date 6th June 1996, and now formed the immensely popular boy band, The Heavenly Quins.
Hunter’s blond hair and green eyes had girls the globe over fainting at the sight of him. The band had only been famous for six months and already had three number one singles and a world tour booked, on which they had just embarked. Hunter liked to keep his fans happy, he regularly shared ‘selfies’ with them on social media, and out of the five boys, was the most likely to interact with fans online and in person. He looked younger than the rest, although they were all the same age, his face appeared to be the most babyish. The rest of the band consisted of Cody, Logan, Ethan and Dylan, for the purpose of the band they were all called ‘Brogan’.
“So who is she then?” Cody bounced into Hunter’s hotel room asking as he lay himself down on the end of Hunters bed.
Hunter looked at Cody blankly, “Who?”
“The girl you spent last night with… durghhhh” Cody said implying that Hunter was either stupid, promiscuous, or both. Hunter clearly had no idea what Cody was talking about.
“Look mate, if you didn’t want the world to know about her, you shouldn’t have posted a picture of you two in bed together on Instagram!” Cody sniped. A disagreement ensued, whereby Cody said the picture of the two of them appeared on Hunter’s instagram this morning from this very hotel room. Hunter retaliated with, the pic he had shared this morning was of himself, on his own, in bed, relaxing with his arm behind his head! To prove his point he pushed the original photograph he had taken on his phone under Cody’s nose.
“Exactly my point! Who is she?” Cody said turning the phone back to Hunter. There very clearly in the photograph, nestled into the crook of Hunters arm, was a pretty young girl with dark red hair and huge blue eyes.
“I’ve been hacked!” Hunter stated matter of factly as he had been on his own when he took the photograph. Cody couldn’t see how but suggested he took the picture down off Instagram before the company got wind of it. Hunter was more concerned that his phone had been hacked, but did as Cody suggested, calling for an mobile technician to deal with the intrusive hacker.
Hunter had to attend the shop in the city center or reset the phone. There was a lot of things on his phone he didn’t want to lose so he chose visiting the shop as a means of sorting the problem of the hacker out.
The assistant was as adamant that the photograph had not been interfered with, as Hunter was that the girl was not in his room. After much discussion and disagreement, the phone had to be reset or go in to be analysed and fixed. Hunter decided there was no way his phone was going to any repair place, it contained sensitive information, so he reluctantly backed his private files up and reset the phone.
Hunter was annoyed, no one had decided to deal with the problem of the hacker, not even the mobile provider who had let the hacker in, in the first place. Reluctantly he made his way back to the hotel, tonight they had a concert here in Manchester, then for the following three nights no rest, a concert every night in Manchester before the having a night off then four nights in London.
Cody and Dylan were sat at the bar talking when Hunter arrived back. Deciding that, the issue had now been dealt with, he hadn’t lost his personal files, and his privacy hadn’t been compromised, Hunter decided to let his mood lighten and prepare for tonight’s show. He always filled with nervous energy when about to go on stage, and it started building up hours before. Cody looked up and asked him if he had managed to solve the problem of the girl, at which he and Dylan laughed. Cody couldn’t understand how, if she wasn’t in the room, the picture had been uploaded to Hunter’s Instagram, Dylan suggested she’d hacked that too.
Hunter checked his Instagram account and with a small amount of relief that there had been no other infringements, put his head on the bar, that would be all he needed, some psychotic fan, not only hacked his phone but his Instagram too. All he could do with the Instagram account was change the password and hope for the best. Dylan suggested that the only way she could have done it, was via his phone, she replaced his picture with the one of the two of them, and uploaded it via his phone to his instagram account. Even Cody agreed that was the most logical explanation, and now his phone had been dealt with, she ‘should’ be out of his pictures and his social media.
Ethan’s appearance at the bar was preceded by screams, and then chants of “We love the Quins”. Cody asked Hunter how he had got in and out without being noticed, to which he pointed to the kitchen door and the back way. Ethan strolled in flicking his long black fringe back from his face as he removed his sunglasses. “There’s no need to do that here, there’s no fans” Cody scoffed. Ethan prided himself on his appearance and on his attitude, and no matter how much the others irked him, prided himself on the fact that as juvenile as they may be, he was mature enough to rise above it and ignore it, so he turned his attention to Hunter.
“So you’re the one she’s with, I did wonder…” clearly waiting for Hunter to tell the story, asked him what her name was? After Hunter’s explanation of events, Ethan’s eyes grew wide, it wasn’t often he was concerned about something but about this he clearly was.
The ‘girl’ had been appearing in their photographs for a little over a month ‘at least’ Ethan said, explaining that it had been at least that long that he had noticed her, he assumed she was with a member of the band, but didn’t know which one. Which meant, not only was Hunter hacked, it looked like the whole band was.
Dylan sat quiet for a few minutes then asked Ethan to show him these photographs. They all made their way to Ethan’s room. Ethan pulled up photograph after photograph, mainly group shots, crowd shots, and in each one ‘The Girl’ was there. Photographs from magazines, from audience shots during television interviews, fan events. In about fifteen photographs the girl appeared and quite ‘prominently’, standing out from her surroundings, in a way none of them could quite explain.
“Psychotic, stalker fan” Dylan said.
“Psychotic, stalker fan with hacking abilities” Cody followed up.
Hunter decided, that after her hacking his phone, if she turned up at tonight’s show, which in all probability she would, he’d have her arrested. Ethan didn’t think it was good public relations. “I don’t give a shit, she shouldn’t have hacked my phone!” Hunter shouted over his shoulder as he made his way back to his room to get his things ready for rehearsals and soundcheck.
The afternoon and evening passed off without much event. The boys were flat out busy, between soundcheck, food, rehearsal, food and finally the show they didn’t have much time to give ‘The Girl’ much thought. Photographs were taken, not that they were looking but they didn’t notice her and the show was a huge success at Manchester Arena. The boys had taken to taking a ‘selfie’ of themselves on the stage with the crowd behind them after every show, tonight being the first night of their world tour, was a memorable night, more-so because it was Dylan’s hometown, the boys stood, Hunter held the phone at arm’s length with selfie stick, as they took the photograph, Hunter saw 'The Girl' in the crowd just behind him, and near dropped the phone swinging round to confront her. When he turned around however, he couldn’t see her. He searched the immediate vicinity to no avail, ‘The Girl’ wasn’t there. He asked security to keep an eye out for her describing her well, and they reset the shot.
They had just focused the lens and there she was smiling at them from the front row, right by the security guard he’d just asked to keep an eye out for her. Hunter took the shot angrily and swung round, but again by the time he had faced the crowd, ‘The Girl’ had disappeared. Hunter gave the security guard a piece of his mind, she had been stood right next to him when they took the picture. The security guard argued that there were fifty or so girls stood right by him. Hunter showed him the picture, the girl prominently stood ‘next to’ the security guard. The security guard looked uncomfortable, he really hadn’t seen her, what bothered him most was, he wasn’t sure how he hadn’t? The Girl was exactly as Hunter had described her, she was exactly what the security guard had been looking for, and had been looking directly at, but he had ‘not’ seen ‘that’ girl in the crowd.
The boys returned to their hotel a little bamboozled. They had all taken a good look at the crowd as the house lights had been up for the photo taking. The only place the girl had been seen was the screen of the phone on which the photograph had been taken and in the photograph itself. “She know’s we’re on to her now, she may quit stalking us” Dylan said thoughtfully. The boys contented themselves with this thought, and relaxed for the night.
The following day they had a fan event in the afternoon, the day would be rushed as they had to fit in the soundcheck. The boys kept a keen eye out for the red head with the blue eyes, but she didn’t turn up at the event. At least they were sure she hadn’t until a fan tagged them in an Instagram photo, Hunter happened to look, and there stood at the end of the table, was ‘The Girl’.
All the boys agreed, she hadn’t been there, but the photo clearly showed her stood leaning on the table, in a suit, looking for all the world like as if she was working in the venue. They checked the Instagram account, it belonged to a fan they actually knew quite well, one who had followed them from the beginning.
Dylan seemed convinced it looked like ‘The Girl’ was a member of staff at the venue and decided call and find out who she was. “She has dark red hair, scarlet almost, it cascades down her back in gentle waves, she has really long eyelashes and huge blue eyes, full lips, hourglass figure, she reminds me a bit of Jessica in Who Framed Roger Rabbit.” Dylan told the manager of the venue.
“The way you’re describing her, I really do wish she worked here, but I’m afraid we have no one by that description on our staff.” The manager said before hanging up the phone.
“Jessica Rabbit?” Hunter asked disbelievingly. The other boys agreed though, she was definitely reminiscent of the cartoon character.
“Damn I bet she’d look good in that red dress…” Ethan thought out loud, Hunter dug him in the ribs, this girl was stalking them and doing it well. “Sooooo,” Ethan said, “That doesn’t mean she’s not hot!”
Logan said nothing to the other boys. He too had seen the girl on the screen of the phone, but when he turned round “she just wasn’t there!” he thought to himself with a shudder. He couldn’t rationalise it, Hunter had his phone reset, it was highly unlikely anyone would have been able to reinfect his phone so easily, the girl on the screen was clearly stood next to the security guard, she seemed to ‘stand out’ from the crowd, yet when he had turned round, there were other girls stood by the security guard, but not that one! When he had turned back and looked at the phone, the redhead had still been visible on the screen. Logan felt like there was something altogether demonic going on. He also felt like saying 'paranormal' out loud would attract it, or bring it down on him and so far it seemed to be focused on Hunter.
Tonight was the second night in Manchester, Hunter was prepared. He had circulated the picture of ‘The Girl’ to all the security personnel, to the admissions staff, in fact to everyone who had anything to do with the venue, to all the stagehands, road crew, if ‘The Girl’ got in, she would be escorted to the nearest police station.
The gig went off without a hitch, until the final ‘selfie’ and again there she was, this time Hunter was prepared, he took the picture, backed right up to the edge of the stage, but as he stopped he could see the other boys still searching the crowd. He motioned for Ethan to come over, and before Ethan looked at the phone Hunter asked him if Ethan could see the girl in the crowd? Ethan couldn’t, but Hunter could clearly see her on his phone screen. He asked Ethan to get his phone out. The same thing happened, ‘The Girl’ was visible on the phone screen, but not in the crowd. Ethan started asking random people to lend him their phones, from stage personnel to fans and security at the front of the stage. In every single case without exception, ‘The Girl’ was visible on the phone screen, but she was not in the crowd. Logan saw the colour drain from Hunter and Ethan’s faces as realisation gripped them. This was not a hacking, it was a haunting.
Things went swiftly from bad to worse. Every time one of the boys attempted to take a picture of themselves, the girl showed up. In the shower, in the bedroom, in the car. Pictures taken by other sources appeared to show her in the background, identifiable by her long red hair. Logan was so scared by now he was contemplating leaving the band altogether.
The last concert in Manchester, the boys forwent their obligatory ‘selfie’ and chose to throw tokens into the crowd instead. The journey to London was quiet, none of the boys wanted to mention it, and Logan had taken to wearing a rosary around his neck with crucifix after she had showed up in his screen reflection as he was attempting to make a call. The result was he dropped his phone and smashed the screen, which he had no intention of getting fixed until someone called in an exorcist.
They reached the hotel and ascended the steps. As they got to the rotary door, Hunter was distracted by a bus with their pictures on, as he turned back he bumped into someone, the someone didn’t look up and as Hunter made to carry on, he realised it was ‘The Girl’. She had descended a few steps by the time he caught up with her, grabbed her arm and swung her round, causing her to stumble on the steps, the two of them falling the remaining two.
All the boys ran back down to the pair in a heap on the floor.
“HOW ARE YOU DOING IT?” Hunter yelled at the girl who quite clearly seemed to have no clue as to what was happening. Logan threw his crucifix on her, and was quite astounded when she picked it up looking at it in a very questioning manner, but clearly not burning or hissing or speaking in tongues. In fact the only tongue she spoke in was in English to ask them what the hell they were doing? As she finalled managed to drag herself to her feet, as it was clear none of these boys were going to help her, she handed the rosary back to Logan.
“How do you do this?” Hunter asked calling up a photograph and thrusting the screen in ‘The Girls’ face.
The Girl looked suitably confused as she asked him what he was on about? He asked her straight, how was she showing up in all their photographs, especially as she didn’t seem to be a ghost, therefore she must be hacking their phones, hacking everyone’s phones! The girl looked back at the screen and asked Hunter politely what it was she was meant to be looking at.
“YOU IN THE PICTURE! IN EVERY PICTURE WE HAVE TAKEN FOR THE LAST MONTH AT LEAST!” Hunter yelled.
“I’m not in that picture” the girl said meekly, looking at a picture of Hunter in the lobby of a hotel. Hunter looked at the phone, she was right, she wasn’t in it. Ethan snatched her phone and started piling through her photographs, and each time she tried to grab it back one of the boys held her off. Hunter continued looking through the pictures on his phone. She had been in most of them, and now she wasn’t in any.
Ethan had looked through all her pictures, she had nothing to do with Heavenly Quins on her phone, he handed her phone back and apologised. Hunter stood remonstrating for a while indignantly, until he realised he had absolutely no evidence what-so-ever that they had ever seen this girl before. Finally he looked the girl in her eyes which were filling with tears and something felt like it went ‘ping’ in his head.
Cupid fired his arrow and sat smirking on the steps of the hotel. Fate, had lost the bet. Cupid had set it up so that Hunter would be staying at the hotel Jessica worked in. However, these two were fated to pass each other by, like two ships in the night. Fate had maneuvered the scenario so that even though Jessica left by the front door of the hotel instead of the staff entrance, Hunter, distracted by his image on the bus would bump into Jessica but not make eye contact, thereby never knowing she was his soul mate. Jessica being engrossed in the message that had just come through on her phone at the end of her shift would pass by him never knowing who he was. They would bump shoulders but not pay each other any heed, and forever be ‘star-crossed’.
Cupid liked this new fangled technology, and in future he’d make sure Fate stayed out of romantic concerns! For now though, slate wiped clean, these two have just bumped shoulders and tumbled down a few steps, are helping each other up with the aid of his band mates, Ethan is joking, that is how to fall for a girl, and none of them remember being ‘haunted’.
Except Logan, who as always is saying nothing, the rosary around his neck has protected him from Cupid’s spellcraft. Hunter is very taken with the beautiful, curvaceous girl with the long red hair cascading in waves down her back, and huge blue eyes. Sat on the top step was a fat little man in a nappy, he had to all intents and purposes just shot an arrow that had it been real would undoubtedly have killed Hunter and ‘The Girl’. Logan nodded to Cupid, Cupid nodded back, “Your turn next young Logan!” he said, Logan lifted the rosary around his neck, Cupid simply winked at him and disappeared. Logan removed the rosary.
RodRaglin: Sounds like an interesting story, LesAnne.Here are some things you might want to consider when you revise this draft."Show don't tell." You've probably hear this before and wondered what's the difference? Well, the difference is as a writer you're telling your reader what's happening rather than ...
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Alex Rushmer: This was not what I expected, but I enjoyed it a lot Malfoy was always one of the characters that I liked a lot, so I like that a lot of this happens between him and Colette. I read the first couple chapters, and I enjoyed your writing style and am excited to see where you take this story. My com...
GeorgeS: The author has a VERY refreshingly direct writing style. Sometimes being punched in the gut (or nose, as the case may be) can be an excellent thing, indeed. Whatever may be lacking in subtlety is more than made up for in the diamond clarity of character development. I look forward to MORE. I c...
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FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"
Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."