Fear Vs. Love

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Summary

Demetra moved to London for schooling, far away from her family and the world she had known all of her life. There, she gets drawn into a volatile, unpredictable, unorthodox, and confusing relationship with a young, extremely androgynous struggling musician. Demetra and Brian develop a friendship quickly. Though she has no idea of how deep his feelings for her really go. Their relationship is filled with very mixed signals, as well as many hardships. These are due mostly to his androgyny, and the drug-inspired mood swings he exhibits, causing him to say and do things that mislead all around him even more than his mannerisms and appearance already do. When Brian's band skyrockets to stardom overnight, becoming one of the most sought after bands in Europe, things only become more intense. His drug use and promiscuity increase tenfold with his newfound fame. This only adds fuel to the flames Demetra has to make her way through to get past both she and Brian's fears to hopefully find what could be a truly beautiful love.

Genre:
Romance / Drama
Author:
Janelle Walden
Status:
Excerpt
Chapters:
5
Rating:
n/a
Age Rating:
18+

Chapter 1

~October 1995~

Demetra Wells solemnly took her bags from the bus and hoisted them over her shoulders. She nervously looked up and down the London street and took a deep breath as she began walking in the direction the driver had suggested.

After walking for several minutes, long since having tired of the weight of her belongings, she finally stopped in front of a fancy apartment building. She took a second look at the name of the building, before reluctantly stepping inside. After taking the elevator to the third floor, Demetra made her way down the hall to apartment 320.

When Demetra stopped at the door, she found an envelope taped to it, with her name scrawled across the front. The note inside informed her that her Aunt Amanda would not be home until late because a last minute emergency had presented itself at the museum she was the curator of.

The note went on to tell her that the door code was her mother’s birthday, and that she should go inside and make herself at home.

Demetra sighed, but she was still somewhat relieved. She hadn’t seen Amanda since she was twelve years old, and she had enough to deal with, being in a foreign country, without having to make small-talk with her mother’s long-lost step-sister.

Shortly after dropping her bags to the floor, Demetra found herself staring out the window. She was trying to decide what her first step would be in dealing with a new life in a land a whole ocean away from the home she had always known in America.

As she gloomily stared out at the afternoon scene, her stomach reminded her that the only thing she had eaten all day had been one of those tiny bags of peanuts on the plane. She then noticed the cafe across the street, shrugged, and scribbled her intentions onto a nearby piece of paper just in case her aunt did decide to put in an appearance. She then headed back out of the apartment once again.

Demetra entered the cafe a few moments later and found herself a corner booth to hopefully hide the fact that she was eating alone, which she hated doing. But, in a foreign country, with an apathetic aunt, what choice did she have?

Demetra looked nervously around the restaurant, absently twisting her long, jet-black locks around her fingers, Finally, a waitress named Iris came over and asked her what she’d like, speaking with a strong British accent. Demetra made her selection from the menu and continued her inspection of her surroundings. She continued just looking around, not finding anything of too much interest at all until something did catch her attention at last. Two new arrivals walked in, and she couldn’t help noticing them. The taller one was much taller than his companion, almost a foot. He had short blonde hair, and, despite his height, which was well over six feet, he had extremely feminine mannerisms.

His companion was harder to figure out, appearing to be a female, and quite strikingly beautiful. The shorter of the two had longish black hair, heavy lipstick, large black sunglasses, and a lipstick stained cigarette at the corner of incredibly pouty lips.

The two of them took the booth diagonally across from her. The shorter of the two was facing away from Demetra, yet she continued to stare, hoping the taller one wouldn’t notice too much.

“Every day they’re in here,” Iris quietly complained to Demetra as she brought her her drink.

“Who?” Demetra responded, pulling her eyes away from the beauty queen she had been mesmerized by.

“Those two nancy boys right there,” Iris responded in a loud whisper, gesturing to the two new arrivals. “The boss won’t throw them out cause he’s afraid of getting sued or something,” she added before walking away, shaking her head.

Boys? Did she hear right? Well, if the waitress was right, it was slightly easier to figure out why she had been so drawn to this gorgeous creature. Though, you definitely couldn’t tell it was a male creature just by looking, that was for sure.

Demetra quickly pushed her own thoughts into the background as the taller of the two spoke to his companion.

“So, are we getting the usual, Brian?” he asked the superbly coiffed one in some strange Swedish-British hybrid accent.

“Probably. I’m too hungover to think right now,” Brian replied in what was an effeminate, though male voice, and an accent that made him sound like he came from four countries at once.

“When aren’t you?” the taller one returned.

Demetra watched as ‘Brian’ gave his, yes his, companion the finger before taking another long drag off of his cigarette.

She continued to listen to their conversation, even after Iris brought her food over, barely touching it as a result.

“So, what’s the plan for after the show?” the taller one continued.

“Are you asking me to think again?” Brian responded. Even his accent was sexy, despite the fact that it was unrecognizable.

“Sorry, I forgot,” the taller one responded, speaking in a naturally meek tone. It was fairly obvious to see why the waitress had dubbed them ‘nancy boys.’

Despite their feminine looks and mannerisms, Demetra still found herself incredibly drawn to Brian. He was beautiful. There was no other way to describe him. She then found herself getting depressed by the fact that the two of them were together, considering it could very well mean that they were together. At that realization, she even began to develop a bit of animosity toward the taller one.

Iris then approached their table and spoke, “what can I get you ladies?”

Though Demetra couldn’t tell Brian’s reaction to her pointed comment, his companion simply shook his head and ordered. After Brian ordered, Iris turned away, furtively glancing at Demetra and rolling her eyes.

“That bitch needs laid,” Brian grumbled, putting out his cigarette and glancing at Demetra, who had snickered at his comment. “Nice dress,” he commented as he glanced at her long black velvet dress.

“Thanks. I actually ordered it from England,” she managed, quite nervously.

Brian turned to face her. “You sound American.”

“Yeah, I am,” she replied. All she could hope was that her nervousness about speaking to someone as beautiful as he so obviously was, wasn’t too apparent.

“Really? Me too,” Brian returned.

“You are?” she replied with surprise.

“My parents and brother still live in New York,” he stated conversationally.

“Really? I’m from near there too.”

“I’m Brian, by the way,” he explained, then gestured to his companion. “This is Sebastian.”

“Hi,” Sebastian replied quietly. He then simply went back to reading something on the place mat.

“So, what on Earth brought you to London?” Brian asked.

“Well, my mother had this ‘great’ idea for me to study abroad... never mind what I thought. So, I’m moving in with my long-lost aunt here in England.”

“Sounds like you get along as well as me and my mother.” Brian attempted to wheedle a smile out of her, despite her unhappiness about her current circumstances.

“Actually, we get along ok, for the most part. She just tends to be a little pushy at times,” she defended unconvincingly, then checked herself. “I don’t normally talk like this with complete strangers, honestly. Especially on my first day in a foreign country. Not that I’ve ever been to one before this,” she smiled nervously.

“It’s ok. Some people just click,” Brian returned.

Demetra took a hurried sip of her drink as she tried to figure out how she was supposed to respond to that. “So, how come you and your mom don’t get along? Not that it’s any of my business,” Demetra quickly covered, checking herself again.

“Oh, it’s ok. Let’s just put it this way: She’s a born-again Christian, and I’m me,” Brian responded with a smile as he gestured to his appearance. Demetra smiled again and took a sip of her soda. “So, goth-girl, do you have a name?” Brian asked after taking a drag from his newly lit second cigarette.

“Oh, I’m sorry. It’s Demetra.”

“Demetra? How pretty. That would have been a good name if I had been born the right sex,” he complained as Iris set down their drinks without a word.

“The right sex?” Demetra questioned.

“Yeah, I definitely should’ve been a female. But most people think I am anyway. Did you when I first came in?” he asked her point-blankly.

“Actually, yeah,” Demetra admitted with a blush.

“Someone as pale as us shouldn’t be so easily embarrassed.” He winked as he leaned back to take a sip of his Bloody Mary.

“Sorry,” she giggled, proceeding another moment of silence.

“So, where are you living here? Is it nearby?” Brian finally continued.

“Where?”

“Yeah. We should spend more time together,” Brian suggested frankly.

“The three of us?” she asked nervously. That had to have been what he meant, right?

“Well, when Sebastian’s not with his boyfriend” Brian replied, completely unabashedly.

“Oh. So you two aren’t like...? Never mind. I’m being way too nosy,” Demetra said with another little blush as she looked away.

“No, we’re not like.” Brian laughed. “I’m not his type. The bitch,” he returned in a teasing manner as he threw a straw wrapper at Sebastian.

“Oh, like I’m your type Bri. You like all those little pretty boys, like yourself,” Sebastian retorted.

“You do have a great body though,” Brian told him in complete sincerity.

“Thank you, dear. Now let the poor girl finish eating,” Sebastian instructed in an almost maternal tone.

Brian leaned out of the seat to turn to Demetra before furtively speaking. “Who’s a more fascinating conversationalist? Me, or the sandwich?”

“I’d have to say you.” she smirked.

“See, Bas? She likes me,” Brian gloated as he blew his companion a little kiss.

“Tease,” Sebastian returned.

Brian also smirked before turning his attention back to Demetra. “Don’t mind him. I always knew friends with breasts were better anyway.” Sebastian simply rolled his eyes at Brian’s comment. “So,” Brian began again, a moment later, “now that we’re friends, are you going to answer my question about where you’re now living?”

“Sorry, I forgot that I didn’t answer that.” Demetra began. She honestly had. She had been too busy staring at Brian and having a mini-celebration in her head when she had found out that they weren’t actually a couple. Though, it had been as good as confirmed that Brian was definitely into guys. “I’m actually living in the building right across the street,” she answered.

“Somebody’s got a rich aunt,” Brian responded, taking another drag off of his cigarette.

“I guess so. Of course, I haven’t seen the woman in years. It really was the only place I had to stay,” Demetra admitted sadly.

“Don’t worry. We’ll keep you from having to spend too much time with her,” Brian promised.

Demetra smiled again and couldn’t help wondering if Brian knew exactly how much of a flirt he sounded like. Then again, maybe it was just her subconscious wishing it so.

“You look confused, dear,” Brian stated after having scanned her expression.

“Sorry. I’ve just got a lotta stuff on my mind,” she returned, taking another drink.

“Stuff? How specific,” Brian teased.

“Sorry,” she said with a small smile.

Brian looked over at Sebastian. “How many sorry’s is that now?”

“Five,” Sebastian answered matter-of-factly. “I guess she’s making up for the fact that you never apologize.”

“Who asked you?” Brian retorted in a less-than-serious manner.

“Just telling it like it is,” Sebastian replied.

Brian simply held up his hand, with its beautifully manicured fingernails, the palm facing Sebastian, and turned back to Demetra.

“What are you doing tonight?” Brian asked her outright.

“Tonight?” she began, surprised. “My aunt’s supposed to be home eventually. Don’t ask me when that is though,” she answered.

“She wasn’t even there to meet you?” Brian asked, surprised as well.

“No. Afraid not,” she admitted, eyes cast down.

“Fuck her then. Come watch us,” Brian instructed as though argument were futile.

Watch you?”

“Yeah, my friend Seth is going to sit in with us on drums tonight, since our actual drummer is back home in Sweden for the weekend,” Brian explained.

“You’re in a band?” Demetra returned with interest.

“Why? Did we look like construction workers?” Brian joked.

“Not hardly,” she smiled.

“So you’ll come tonight then?”

Demetra quickly pushed the words ‘I wish’ out of her head before she spoke. “I really would have no idea how to get there. Even if I had any way of getting there,” she explained apologetically.

“I could give you a ride if you like,” Brian offered with a continued friendly manner, despite how rare that may have been with people he was less fond of speaking to.

“Really?” she asked, hopeful again.

“That’s why I offered,” he smiled.

“All right then,” she agreed as Brian nodded in return.

“I hope you like rock music,” Brian chuckled.

“Look at me,” she smiled, gesturing to her own appearance.

“Yeah. You do,” Brian giggled. He had been giggling a lot actually.

They continued speaking, mostly about music, for another fifteen minutes or so before Brian bid her farewell until later. Sebastian simply nodded goodbye to her. Then they were gone.

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