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Chapter Five

Shae’s P.O.V

I woke up today and felt good. Wow, am I becoming a morning person? I put on a cute dress, chunky sneakers, and a jeans jacket. I scrunched up my hair, grabbed my things, and headed downstairs with a wide smile on my face.

“Morning.” I chirped happily.

“Someone’s happy.” Mom smiled.

“I don’t know, I’m just happy,” I said furrowing my eyebrows.

“Does it have to do with that boy from school?” Andy asked, smirking.

“What boy?” Greg said with a faux stern face.

I laughed. “I rejected him.” I shrugged.

“Why? He’s cool.” Andy replied.

“You’ve been at the school for like a week.” I raised an eyebrow.

“Yeah but, I’m Andy Talvin. People want to talk to me.” He laughed and I rolled my eyes.

“Anyways, can we go now?” I wanted to change the subject because I didn’t even know why I rejected him.

“Mmhm.” Andy teased and I rolled my eyes.

“Oh, hun?” Mom called out.

“Yes, mom?”

“Can you come dress shopping with me today? We want to have the wedding soon.” She asked and my face lit up.

“Of course! Can Cass join?” I asked, smiling widely.

“Of course she can.” She answered chuckling.

“Are we riding together?” Andy asked once we got outside.

“If you want..” I trailed.

“Let’s go.” He ran over to the Bugotti. “But I’m driving.” He sang. We hopped in and he pulled out recklessly.

“Slow down!” I yelped as he laughed.

“Anyways, why don’t you want to go out with Darien? He seems to like you.”

“I don’t know man, I feel weird,” I answered thoughtfully.

“I think you should consider.” He shrugged.

***

When we finally pulled up to school everyone was staring and I was shaking in my chair. Everyone’s eyes were bulging and they were probably wondering who was pulling into the driveway, about to kill everyone. As soon as Andy parked the car, I jumped out and steadied myself while taking a couple of deep breaths.

“Oh thank you sweet baby Jesus!” I hollered as I leaned against the car. Andy came around and belly laughed.

He wrapped an arm around my shoulder, “Oh sis, relax. You’re alive aren’t you?” He said

“Barely, you dickhead!” I yelled and all eyes were still on us. The fuck, I hate this school sometimes. I hate when people stare at me for no fucking reason. “WHAT ARE YOU ALL STARING AT?!” I yelled annoyed and Andy laughed more. He pulled me inside and the stares continued.

“Okay, what’s going on?” Andy asked my group of friends as they ran towards us excitedly.

“Omg, Shae!” Cass squealed.

“What?” I asked as she shoved two magazines in my face. One from Vogue and one from Harper’s Bazar. I gasped and my face lit up. “What, I thought they weren’t coming out until Friday?!” I squealed.

“You look so hot, girl!” Cass exclaimed and we laughed.

“And your mom is pregnant? Wow,” Dylan congratulated. He always loved my mom.

“And getting married,” James added. I was so happy with all the news but my smile soon faded. I didn’t realize all of these would come out so quickly.

“What’s wrong?” Andy asked.

“Well, now everyone knows who I am.” I sighed. I thought I would have until the end of this week.

“So...you’re famous. Live it up!” Cass said. I guess I should be proud.

“Know what...you’re right. I am Shaeliegh Reeves.” I said and they all cheered.

***

This morning was wild. People left and right, gawked at me like I was a rare bird. Some congratulated me, some wanted to know the real reason why I kept my life hidden, some wanted a damn autograph as if I hadn’t been going to school with them for years! Needless to say, I was extremely overwhelmed. Seriously, I was currently trying to eat my lunch but everyone was still staring. This is the main reason I didn’t want fame until I graduated.

“Could you guys give it a break!” Miranda yelled, gathering all of the attention. “She’s a normal girl who probably begged Shannon Reeves to adopt her or something and force them to let her do the photoshoot,” Miranda said as she walked over to Andy, She placed a tight grip onto Andy’s shoulder.

“Excuse me? Do not disrespect my step sister like that.” Andy spoke up, removing Miranda’s hand off of him. She dramatically gasped as if he slapped her.

“W-what,” She stumbled.

“You heard me. Now, fucking hell, get off of me.” He sneered. She flustered and shot up straight as something quickly came over me.

“And you know what Miranda? Could you possibly shut the fuck up for once? I am so tired of your shit and one-sided hatred against me all these years. I am already having a rough day and struggling while trying to come to terms with the fact that my life just switched upside down! Get over yourself, dude. I know you secretly wish you were me but get over it. I’m not adopted, my mother; Shannon Reeves clearly gave birth to me about seventeen years ago. I literally look like a spitting image of her.” I exasperated as I ran my hand down my face. “Due to personal circumstances, my mother nor myself wanted me to be in the limelight, I wanted a normal childhood so my identity was somewhat hidden. How do you guys think I afford everything I have and how I get the latest fashion lines before it hits stores? Miranda, go somewhere and lay on your back. We all know that’s all you’re good at anyway.” I finished and slugged in my seat, a raging headache coming on. Miranda spluttered multiple times before storming off. Everyone took the hint and backed off as well. I smiled and began eating my food peacefully.

“Dude, that was fire.” Dylan cheered as the rest of my friends smiled widely.

“Look at you, learning how to deal with it!” Cass beamed.

***

After school, Cass and I headed towards the boutique that my mother was getting her dress from. While leaving school, my mother had texted me saying that one of her friends wanted to meet me and it had to do with becoming my manager. To say I was shooketh was an understatement. I mean, how did my life go from ‘regular, rich teenage girl’ to my face being on freaking Vogue magazine?! When I had envisioned starting my career after graduating, I thought I’d do an expose story with a reporter, not model for Greg Talvin’s winter clothing line, and have him label me as his stepdaughter and daughter of Shannon Reeves in one week!

Jesus, my life is like a movie right now. We got to the boutique and people were slightly staring and whispering as we entered, a copy of the magazine laid in one of the employee’s hands.

“Darling!” My mother cheered as she greeted Cass and me. We both hugged. “This is Adrienne, she is an agent.”

“Nice to meet you.” I smiled as I shook her hand.

“I’ve heard so much about you over the years! Your mother would always say ‘she dreams of being a singer one day, book her.’ Now that you’ve ‘come out’ perse, what’s the wait?” Sheesh, she got right to it.

“Uh, I was always thinking of waiting for graduation but now, I don’t even know. I feel like my world was just flipped upside down. I was living like Miley and Hannah for so long but now I feel like that scene in the Hannah Montana movie when she pulls off her wig in the revolving door and Travis sees her.”

“Dude.” Cass laughed as my mother and Adrienne just gawked with amused expressions.

“She’s cute and quirky, she’ll be a star.” Adrienne laughed. “Let’s chat while your mother tries on her dresses.”

“Yes, let’s get to that!” My mom said, calling over the assistant. She took her into a room where all her dress options were.

“So, how would all of this work? You representing me?” I asked.

“So, it would be simple. I’d get you booked, plan everything out-- basically I am your fairy Godmother who makes things happen and tells you when to show up.” She shrugged with a laugh. “I represent many clients and truly love my job. I think you could be an amazing star, you have the look and vibe.”

“That sounds great.” I nodded thinking it over.

“Dress number one!” The assistant cheered as my mother stepped out in a gorgeous puffy lace gown.

“Oh wow, mommy!” I said. She looked stunning.

“Do you like it, bean?” She asked.

“Love it!” Cass and I both answered.

“You look stunning, Shannon.” Adrienne complemented genuinely. She twirled some more before heading back into the room to put on dress number two. “So what is your goal? Dream?”

I breathed out, feeling tingles on my arms. “A singer,” I said confidently. It had always been my dream.

“She’s an amazing singer.” Cass chimed in.

“That’s awesome! What kind of music do you like or would like to sing?”

“I love alternatives! Definitely an alternative r&b kinda gal.” I nodded.

“Very cool and very different.”

“I’d honestly like to stay that way and not become a super pop star with bright colors and theatrics,” I added. I hated when so many alternative artists ended up switching because of management.

“I will try my hardest to make sure you’re true to yourself.” Adrienne nodded genuinely and I smiled, feeling excited. “I want to get you into a studio as soon as possible. Hear your sound.”

“Seriously?” I squealed.

“Yes. From there, you could be recording some demos, getting interviews, and booking gigs! Speaking of interviews, tons of people want you on.”

“Wait, what?” Who?!

“Yes, you’re the talk of Hollywood right now, everyone wants to be the first to book you on their talk show.”

“Dude!” I smacked Cass’s arm and she beamed at me.

“This is awesome!” She hugged me tightly just as mom came out in an even more stunning gown. “Okay, I need this for my wedding!”

“Who are you marrying?” I teased her. She punched my arm lightly as we all laughed.

“You guys like this one?” Mom asked as she smoothed her belly. It was already starting to show.

“It is gorgeous, mom!” I squealed happily. Mom smiled as she went back into the room.

“So, I’ll talk over the business with your mother and let you know alright? Maybe you could come down to the studio sometime this week.”

“Thank you, Adrienne!” I smiled. I was beyond excited. “Can we help pick gowns?” I asked the other assistant at the counter. She nodded happily and Cass and I began searching.

“How about this!” I asked, holding up a beautiful ivory gown. It was another lacy one and it screamed Shannon. I mean the lace criss-cross pattern on the back with bows was lovely. Plus it was A-line and the bodice went down to the hips before it flowed out with a super long train! My mom peeked her head out and both she and Cassandra gaped at me. My mom ran over with tears in her eyes.

“Oh my God! This was the first wedding dress that I designed.” She squeaked, beaming as she read the infamous name tag; By Shannon Reeves.

“It’s-- its...wow.” Cassandra swallowed.

“I have to try it on! How do you guys even have this?” She rambled as she ran back into the dressing room. A few moments later, she stepped out and I almost cried.

“I think this is it, mom,” I said emotionally. Wow, she was freaking beautiful and I was so happy for her. This is so full circle! One of her first designs and she gets to wear it to the wedding of her dreams--- the wedding she deserves.

“Yes, you’re right.” She cried.

“I guess, I’ll ring you up?” The assistant said and we all chuckled. My mother nodded excitedly.

***

After purchasing everything, we went to grab a bite at the mall. We didn’t normally do this.

“As you know, the wedding is in three months and I need some ladies to walk down the aisle.” Mom said cheekily.

“What?” I asked

“I want the two of you to be in the wedding.” She nodded.

“Really?!” Cassandra shrieked, gaining unwanted attention.

“Obviously.” Mom rolled her eyes playfully and Cass smiled smugly.

“Cool, who else is in the wedding?” I asked. They have only begun planning.

“That’s the problem.” She sighed. “Greg and I don’t really know. I mean our first thought was to obviously have you and Andy stand alongside us. But, I thought, how sweet would it be to have James and Dylan? You know, most of our friends are married and too rich to care about being bridesmaids and groomsmen.” She shrugged honestly. “I don’t know and I’m feeling kind of stressed! We have three months to decide on everything. The cake, invites, decorations!” She sighed and I felt bad.

“Mom, I’m putting myself in charge of this wedding,” I said sternly.

“Really? How.” Mom asked, tearfully.

“With the help of Cass. You’re pregnant and should be relaxing.” I said honestly. Cass nodded.

“Thank you both.” She grasped our hands tightly. “Oh and bean?”

“Yes?” I asked.

“I want you to be my maid of honor.” She said warmly and my sides tingled.

“Ahh! Of course!” I said happily as I went over to hug her. I hugged her tightly and she laughed. “Okay, I need to pee, I’ll be back,” I said, smiled, and actually skipped to the ladies room. Before I could make it, I spotted Darien. He worked in the apple store? Aww, he looked so cute. He stopped talking to a customer as he spotted me. Shit, he made the air leave my body as smiled his bright and charming smile. He held up a finger towards me as he finished up with the customer.

He made his way over to me, swiftly. “Shae,” He greeted.

“Darien,” I replied and we smiled at each other.

“I didn’t get to tell you earlier but I just wanted to compliment you on your magazines. You looked beautiful in them.” He finished and I blushed

“Thanks,” I muttered

“Okay.” He breathed out and cleared his throat. “I know you’ve rejected me many times but this time... I’m not taking no for an answer. I mean obviously, unless you have an actual reason. But, please, will you accompany me on a dinner date tonight? Possibly 7:30?”

He looked so cute and I had a jolt of confidence, I couldn’t say no. “Alright.”

“Just think about it you know and - wait yes?” He looked shocked.

“Yes,” I said giggling and his eyes lit up.

“Yes! Finally!” He cheered and I laughed.

“But. One condition. It has to be somewhere private. You know my life just flipped upside down and I really don’t want my first paparazzi photos to be scandalous because I’m out with a boy.” He took in what I said. “It’s not you, obviously. I just don’t want to be on another cover tomorrow morning. I’m still trying to get used to this whole thing. I mean, I keep getting stared at, it’s freaky.” He chuckled and nodded in understanding.

“Whatever floats your boat! As long as I get to see you, baby, I’m fine.” He said sweetly and I blushed some more before we went our separate ways. I ran to the bathroom as my bladder reminded me why I even got up.

***

After eating, I decided to text my Aunt Reba about the wedding planning and because she was nosey and interested in how I was adjusting, she suggested coming over right now to meet. So, my mother, Cass, Aunt Reba, and her daughter -also my cousin- Andrea, and my mom’s friend Leona sat around in the living room.

“Okay now that catch-up is done, let’s get down to business,” Cassandra spoke up.

“Yes! We need to figure out the venue, choose the bridal party, get a cake, caterer, limo, clothing, decor! Oh, and most important; the date! Can’t purchase the invitations and vendors without the most important aspect.” I said. I kept glancing at the clock, it was after 4:30 and I needed to get ready for my date.

“Well, I want an outdoor wedding. Probably in a backyard, decorated like those beautiful fairy gardens you see on Pinterest.” Mom gushed and we looked at her and laughed.

“Those hormones.” Aunt Reba laughed. I loved my aunt, she was the typical big sister.

“Okay, let’s keep note.” I muttered. An outdoor wedding will be doable. “So you want the wedding in 3 months right?” I asked.

“Yes, before the baby comes.” She answered.

“So we’re in January currently...How about April?” I raised my eyebrow.

“Lovely! April 26th!” Mom quickly shouted.

“Why?” The 26th?

“We met on the 26th earlier this year.” She said cheekily and I smiled.

“Aww.” Everyone gushed while she blushed.

“Now that that is settled, what about the time?” Leona asked.

“How about starting the ceremony at three then starting the reception around 5;30?” Andrea said.

“Boom,” Cassandra said, writing it down. “Good work, ladies.”

“Food and cake?” I shot.

“Lizzie’s,” Leona grinned.

“Ouu, they’re good!” Mom agreed.

“They make delicious frosting.” Leona groaned.

“Write it down then!” I laughed.

“What’s next?” Cassandra said.

“Limo and car services,” I answered. I was going quickly as possible so we could finish soon. I mean everyone here has basically planned events or has needed to go to events, they know a lot.

“Campbell Services.” A male voice said. We turned and oh my God, Michael Lake was standing in my house! He smiled at us, his gaze slightly lingering on Andrea. Uh, okay! Andy smiled at Cass and they both blushed. When the fuck? Geez, I feel left out. The four of them apparently were out in the back, swimming based on their wet bodies. James and Dylan peeked around the corner. They’re here too?

“Write it down,” I told Cass and she snapped back to reality.

“What’s up?” Andy asked as he plopped on the armrest of my chair.

“Planning the wedding,” I said, “And you’re in it,” I said pointing at them.

“All of us?” Dylan asked.

“Yerp.” I said and we wrote it down.

“We can get decorations and invites and DIY them? Maybe some kids from the school will help with being the crew?” Aunt Reba chimed in and I snorted.

“Kids from our school?” James laughed.

“Ha! Yeah right,” Dylan said.

“Hire professionals,” Andy said.

“Alright, that’s all settled. Now it’s only the bridal party and the outfits left.” I clasped my hands.

“Oh, and add my uncle Kerry. He’s in the wedding as well.” Andy said “And I’m apparently the best man. You know the maid of honor and best man are supposed to you know.” He wiggled his eyebrows.

“Gross! I’m the maid of honor douche.” I said with emphasis.

“Eww, you’re about to become my sister. I don’t want to think about that.” He gagged and everyone laughed.

“Okay but we’re short on girls.” I sighed. “It’s only me, Cass, Andrea, Aunt Reba. Mom is obviously the bride and Leona chose to be the day of coordinator,”

“I’ll ask my sister; Jackie?” Michael said.

“Woah....the Jackie Lake?” James basically drooled.

“The Victoria Secret Model?” Dylan smirked.

“Yeah...my twin sister,” Michael said sternly.

“I’m walking with her,” James said quickly. I laughed and nodded.

“No fair!” Dylan whined.

“Hey hey, boys.” Michael smirked. “I could always ask her to ask her best friend; Sheila Chan, to come along too,” Michael sang. Crazy enough, I went to childcare with both Jackie and Sheila. Their mothers modeled for my mom a few times and we were friends. They’re both models now. Followed in their mother’s footsteps.

“It’s settled then!” I squealed happily as I read everything over. “Kerry and Reba, Andy and Cassandra, Michael and Andrea, James and Jackie and lastly; Dylan and Sheila! This wedding is going to be awesome!” I cheered and everyone agreed.

“Wait, but the maid of honor and best man normally walk together? Who will you walk with?” Mom questioned, confusedly.

“I thought I could just walk alone you know.” I shrugged.

“Oh no no-no.” Cassandra shook her head aggressively, throwing me a stink eye.

“I know who she can walk with,” James said, smirking and I knew who it was already.

“DARIEN!” The boys cooed dramatically. I blushed and bit my lip.

“Shut up,” I growled playfully, flipping them off.

“I mean, why not? You can’t just not walk with somebody!” Cass whined.

“I’ll figure it out.” I sighed. I checked the time on my phone and gasped. I had to go!

***

About thirty minutes later, everyone was gone and I was speed showering. I washed my hair, scrubbed my body, and lotioned all in twenty minutes. I felt refreshed, clean, and smelt oh so lovely. I ran back into my room, grabbed my lacy black set before slipping on my golden slip dress. I wanted to look sexy but casual. To finish off the look, I paired it with some ivory ankle heels and sheesh, I look good! I put on some light makeup, jewelry, and did my hair in a bun with curls hanging like bangs.

After admiring myself more, I grabbed my coat, purse, and headed downstairs. Mom was still in the kitchen and I went to say goodbye to her.

“You look beautiful, my love.” Mom cooed. “I hope this boy is a nice guy.”

I laughed at her raised eyebrow. “He is. I’ll be home in about two hours.” I hugged her and left the house. I was going to meet Darien at Kales; a dark, private restaurant. I was so excited for the dinner-- one I was hungry and two, I was pretty excited to get to know Darien. I know I had basically rejected him but that was due to random, displaced fear.

I got to the restaurant and parked my car. I sighed nervously, my adrenaline pumping, and got outside. I walked towards the entrance of the building and saw Darien standing there, looking like a meal. He was in a nice fitted sweater and some skinny-legged slacks with loafers.

“You look beautiful,” He said once I approached him. He grabbed my hand and kissed it softly, sending butterflies to swarm in my belly.

“You look handsome.” I complimented with a wide smile. He took my hand and led us in as the host greeted us. He beamed at me slightly and I smiled small. We thanked him as we took our seats.

“So... what’s up?” Darien asked, breaking the ice.

“Nothing much.” I shrugged, trailing my fingers on the table. “Earlier, I was planning my mother’s wedding with my family. Uh, dealing with Hollywood shit, y’know...transitioning I guess.” I laughed small.

“Oh, that sounds cool. How is the wedding planning going? I mean, how must it feel to plan your mother’s wedding?” He laughed.

“Oh..actually...about that.” I blushed, biting my lip as he raised an eyebrow. “Well, as I was planning, I decided to not give myself a partner to walk down the aisle with, and apparently it’s not acceptable so...would you mind being apart of the bridal party and walking with me?” I asked with my big eyes wide.

“Whoa, was not expecting that.” He chuckled as he rubbed his neck. “But uh, I don’t see why not. I mean, anything for you beautiful.” He nodded and I blushed again, causing him to laugh. “You’re too cute.”

“Thank you,” I replied. We looked over the menus and the waiter soon came over with glasses of water and ready to take our orders. We both ended up getting steak. It soon came out and we fell into a comfortable conversation as we ate.

“Look, Shae, uh..” Darien started as he took his last bite. “I really like you and I would really love it if we could be together?” He asked with hope in his gorgeous eyes.

“Together? Like a couple?” I repeated.

“Yes? What do you say? I’ve been wanting this for a while.” He said honestly.

“I mean, what’s the worst that could happen?” I teased as his lips formed a smile in slow motion. “I would love to,” I said breathing out slowly. Wow, I’m actually doing this!

“Whew, okay! I was nervous as fuck,” He admitted and we both laughed.

“You’re too cute.” I giggled.

“Me cute? I’m not cute.” He joked, with a fake glare and I chuckled.“Hey, how about we catch a drive-in movie?” He suggested and I grinned up at him. I haven’t gone to drive in so long.

“I haven’t been in so long!” I whispered excitedly as we got into his car. We had left my car since he had a range rover that was more spacious than mine. God. I can’t believe that I’m actually dating again. After Peter, I swear I had trauma and some sort of PTSD. I would get anxious thinking about being in another relationship and that was part of the reason I kept rejecting Darien and lowkey, why I wanted to keep us being together somewhat of a secret. I was terrified of a repeat of the Peter situation.

Even though it feels like we were together ages ago, it still stings whenever I think about it. Peter and I were in love...I guess. I mean some people may think otherwise and say that we were too young to know anything about love but, I know what I felt. We dated from 7th grade up to our sophomore year and honestly, it was bliss. Everyone said we were the cutest, and he truly adored me. Sadly, with the pressures of high school, he wanted to fit in and not be considered lame and be made fun of by the other guys at school. Aka, he wanted to lose his virginity asap. But, I was only an uneducated fifteen-year-old...I was scared.

He would try and talk me into it many times but I would repeatedly say no and he’d get angry. But one night, he got so angry, I was backed into the corner, not knowing what he would do. He yelled at me, calling me frigid and a little pussy before storming out of the house. Around that time, I started ignoring Miranda and giving her the same treatment she gave me but she was obviously always worse than me and planned on making my life hell. So at a party one night, she literally had sex with my boyfriend.

Peter was such a drunk and high mess, it frightened me. He came over to my house a few nights after everything had blown up and I thought he was going to apologize but nope, silly me. He started yelling and accused me of being a whore, slut, and saying that the only reason I wouldn’t sleep with him was that I was sleeping with various other guys at school and was a walking STD. Apparently, Miranda had told him everything he needed to know and that was why he slept with her.

I was broken for months. All the childhood trauma came back up and I was crippled. Because of my mom’s job, she was barely home and her assistant was watching over me but I was normally home alone. I suffered alone. Anyways, Peter had come over multiple times, trying to apologize and saying how stupid he was for listening to Miranda. I laughed bitterly in his face. I told him how I was actually planning a special night for us and the way his face turned white then pure red still haunts me. He began hitting himself, calling himself stupid and that he lost the best thing he ever had.

All the trauma collected from him and my father ruined me. I became so closed off and the hidden, insecure girl I was just last week. But, as I said, I’ve been working on it, and launching my career was something I wanted to do that would help me, and saying yes to being with Darien obviously is a good sign that I’m growing in the right direction.

“You okay?” Darien asked, noticing my silence.

“Huh? Sorry, just lost in thought.” I breathed out. I didn’t even realize that were already parked at the drive-in.

“About?” He asked, confused. I looked over at him and smiled. He was such a nice guy and I deserve to give him my best.

“This,” I said softly before unbuckling my seat belt, leaning over, and planting my lips onto his. His lips were so plump and soft and they felt amazing as our lips moved in sync. I moaned softly as he tugged on my bottom lip, slipping his tongue in swiftly. Our tongues moved around each other, fighting for dominance that we eventually won.

“Wow.” He breathed and I smiled softly. I moved over and sat on his lap and cuddled up to him as the movie began.

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