When I wake up, Lorelei isn’t in bed with me. I had sweat running down my back, and my heart is thudding against my chest. I climb out bed, slowly moving out of the room, I can hear someone making food in the kitchen.
“Good morning baby,” I say, walking over to Lorelei in her seat kissing the top of her head. I turn to Alec bouncing around the room like nanny McPhee. “Good morning,”
“Morning! Coffee is in the pot, Zahara said you should sleep in,” he says. “Feeling better?”
“I feel like the world is crashing around me,” I admit, walking over to my cabinets and pulling out a mug. “I’ve never felt less in charge of the outcome of my life,” I pour myself a cup of coffee, adding almond sweetener, and milk before sitting on the counter next to the stove watching Alec cook.
“Calum had to run to his office and Zahara said she would see us tonight, your phone has been ringing since I woke up,” he says, gesturing to it sitting on the kitchen table. I slide off the counter grabbing it off the table, taking a seat beside Lorelei who patiently waited for her food. I had a dozen missed calls from Laila and my mother, but I didn’t have the energy to reply. I had a few missed calls and messages from Braum, but I didn’t want to hear anything he had to say. He was either lying about who released the information or he’s going to try to apologize for his Father, and I didn’t want to hear any of it.
“How did you sleep love?” I ask Lorelei, turning my attention to her.
“You slept with me mama,” she replies.
“I did, I did,” I say.
“Did you have a bad dream?” she asks.
“No, I just missed my cuddle bear,” I say, reaching over and ruffling her hair. A ring of the doorbell pulls me away from the table, May waits for me at the front door.
“They beefed up security,” she says, with a humorless laugh. I open the door allowing her in closing and locking it behind me.
“Sorry, if I’m causing you trouble, I can talk to Zahara about a raise,” I say.
“No Deya, it’s cool,” she says, before making her way into the kitchen. I follow behind her, she peppers Lorelei with kisses, before helping Alec finish breakfast.
“You need to eat mama bear, you have a full day of writing and rehearsals,” Alec says, bringing a plate over to me and pushing me down to the seat.
“I’ve got Lorelei’s work already for her, so she’ll be pre-occupied,” May says.
“I really don’t want to leave her,” I say.
“You won’t be leaving her, she’ll be in her playroom and you’ll be in your writing room, she won’t be far,” Alec says. “And she probably doesn’t even realize what’s happening right now,”
“Just another day in Hollywood,” May says. After breakfast, May, takes Lorelei to wash up and get ready for the day. I move to my room where I change out of my dirty clothes and take a long hot well needed shower before heading towards my writing room. Before starting, I return my mother’s call figuring I wouldn’t get any peace if she was calling me every 5 minutes.
“Hello? Adeya?” My mother says.
“Where have you been? Why haven’t you been answering your phone? Everyone is very worried,” she says.
“I’ve been busy mom, I had a lot to deal with yesterday,” I say.
“I heard,” she says. “I can’t believe someone would do that,” she says.
“Braum said it was Mr. Clifford, is that true?” I ask.
“Oh, heavens no! Robert would never do that! He thought it was a great idea that Lorelei isn’t in the limelight, children stars are always the crazy ones,” she says. He lied to me.
“Then who was it?” I ask.
“My guess is that Demetra girl, something about her always gave me bad feelings, at Braum’s graduation party she just seemed like a lot to handle,” my mom says.
“Thanks mom, I’ve got to get going, I have a lot of work,” I say.
“You’ve got it sweet pea, keep me updated! And answer your phone!” she says.
“Gotcha,” I hang up the phone, immediately texting Zahara the new information before calling Braum.
“Adeya?” Braum says.
“You lied to me,” I say, the other side is silent. “Braum I want this to work, I really want this to work and it is so hard for me,” I say.
I never stopped loving you.
I never stopped loving you.
I never stopped loving you.
“And I know I kept her a secret, and that was my bad, but you can’t lie to me not about her okay?” I say.
“She didn’t mean any harm,” Braum starts, I sink back in my seat squeezing my eyes shut. “She didn’t know it was that big of a secret,”
“Adeya,” Braum says, his voice washing over me like waves sending me back to time when all I could think, talk, or breath was him. “She was just, upset about it all,”
“Why? What does this have anything to do with her?”
“It has everything to do with her, she is my girlfriend and my ex comes back with my child and she just feels,”
“Jealous?” I say, silence again.
“She didn’t mean any harm,” he says. He referred to me as his ex, his ex. A word that seemed like it meant nothing for him to say, I didn’t know how to refer to him, I didn’t even know how to talk to him, but here he is defending his girlfriend to me.
“I can’t control whatever legal actions they take,” I say, before hanging up the phone and chucking it across the room. The loud crack that fills the room, confirms that I probably need a new phone now. The door immediately swings open, and Alec rushes into the room.
“What is happening?” he asks.
“It was Demetra,” I say. “She was jealous because I came back with Lorelei, and he defended her,” Alec immediately runs to my side, pulling me into him. “I thought he loved me,” I whisper, crumpling into him.
“It’s okay,” he whispers rubbing my back, as I sob into his shirt. The emotions of the last week finally breaking through the threshold, as Hurricane Adeya continues to crash through everything in its course. When I calm down, Alec makes us tea and we sit on the back porch and smoke a raw roll-up he brought. May keeping Lorelei occupied so we were completely alone. “What do you think is going to happen now?”
“I don’t know,” I admit. “He told me he never stopped loving me,” I say, Alec whips his head over to me.
“Before we left on Sunday, before I went to the airport, he was saying goodbye to Lorelei and he told me never stopped loving me,” I say, squeezing my eyes shut. “And for one minute, one small minute I believed him,”
“Oh baby,” Alec grabs my hand. “I’m sorry,”
“At least I have inspiration for my third album,” I joke, earning a laugh. We roll back into our comfortable silence, looking out at my backyard cluttered with all of Lorelei’s lawn chairs, and even her wading pool. “I feel like this is all payback, for not telling Braum when I first found out,”
“Don’t say that,”
“No, it probably is, Karma does stuff like that, balances everything out,” I say.
“This is what you call balanced?” he says, crushing the rest of the roll up under his boot. The back-door slides open, and Calum walks out followed by Zahara.
“Do I smell MJ?” Zahara asks.
“All gone sheriff,” Alec says, Zahara rolls her eyes before sitting down in front of me.
“How are you feeling girl? I already ordered you a new phone,” she says.
“I feel shitty,” I admit.
“Well, I informed Jacob of everything and he said he was going to get his lawyers to get in contact with her,”
“What’s going to happen?” I ask.
“If she doesn’t admit to doing it, she’ll be sued,” Zahara says. “If she tells the truth, Jacob said he’d cut her a deal if she gives away all the money and doesn’t take credit for the reveal,”
“Okay,” I whisper.
“The ball is in her court now, but she does have to come to California to meet with the board,” Zahara says.
“Well that’s going to be a show I’m going to hate missing,” Alec mutters.
“I’m going to have to be there?” I ask.
“Only if you want to, and I don’t want you too, I’ll go in your place, it’s what’s best,” she says. “The ball is in their court now and all we have to do is wait,”
“And what about the media? Am I going to tell everyone about Lorelei? What am I going to say? I don’t want my fans to hate me,”
“They’re not going to hate you,” Calum says.
“Honey, I know you haven’t been on the internet, but everyone is on your side,” Zahara says. “No one likes their privacy invaded, Jacob recommends we don’t say anything until we get everything sorted out legally with Demetra,”
“I’m sorry Zahara, I know I’m making your job hard,”
“Honey, this is nothing when I first started Gabrielle Johnson locked herself in a hotel room high on crack, with two of her brothers,” Zahara says.
“Christ,” I mutter.
“Our best bet is to just wait it out, wait until Jacob says next,” Zahara says.
“I just can’t comprehend, exposing the privacy of an infant over some petty jealousy?” Laila says, pacing around her room. “And Abraham is defending her?”
“I haven’t talked to him, I don’t have my phone yet, but my mother says that The Clifford’s aren’t allowing Demetra over anymore,” I say. “Apparently Mrs. Clifford never really liked her to begin with,”
“You will always be their favorite, you practically grew up at their house,” she says.
“This is shit, deep shit Laila and I keep nearly falling off the ledge, I thought the next time I saw Braum, I would look at him and not feel a thing, he broke my heart and moved on in less than a month before I could even finish grieving, we were together for a decade,”
“I know,” Laila says, gently.
“And now he refers to me as his ex, like I’m nothing, and he doesn’t look at me the way he used to, and I didn’t think I’d feel so bad but I do, and it hurts so much,” I say, dropping my head down in my hands. “It hurts more than it did before,”
“I wish I could tell you, it gets easier, and I wish I could tell you that moving on is easy but I honestly don’t know I can’t really picture myself with anyone else but G, and it might sound silly or pathetic whatever peoples view on it is, but I can’t possibly imagine what you’re going through,” Laila says, “But I know you can do this Adeya, you’re so strong and fierce, and you can make it through this,”
“Thanks Laila,” I say. “I should get back to work,” I say, she waves goodbye and I end the call moving away from my amour and falling into bed.
I never stopped loving you. Liar.
“Are you decent?” I hear Alec knock on my door, pushing it open. “Good morning love, are you coming down for breakfast?”
“Is May here?” I ask.
“Yes, she just got here, is everything okay?” he asks, I sit up in bed.
“Just talking with Laila,” I say, sliding off the bed. “Is Zahara and Calum still here?”
“They left before dawn, leaving me stranded,” he says.
“I can get someone to get you a ride home you know,” I say.
“I’d rather stay here, Mark’s brother is in town and I don’t feel like being stared down like I’m a freak for a week,” Alec says.
“Mark’s family doesn’t approve of you too?”
“Mark is from Texas, and his Father is a pastor, what do you think?” Alec says, and I just nod.
“Well stay as long as you like, I’m sure you’ll find a way to squeeze into my things,” I say, leaving my room. When I go downstairs, May is still helping Lorelei with breakfast, I kiss the top of Lorelei’s head before making myself a cup of coffee, and a plate of food. “How did you sleep baby?” I ask, sitting at the table.
“Good,” Lorelei replies.
“Is it okay if I take her to the community park today?” May asks.
“Of course, just don’t leave the gates,” I say, she nods in response. When I finish breakfast, I move directly into my writing room. I had two songs to go, if I pushed through and kept everything out of my mind, maybe I’d make it. Maybe an hour passes when May leaves to take Lorelei to the park, I take a break to make myself some tea. I start playing with the piano hoping some words with form, just spill out.
“What’s the name for that one?” Alec says, at the door I turn my attention to him.
“I’m thinking of calling it Not Over You,” I say.
“That’s an interesting decision,” he says, sitting down beside me at the piano bench. “Can I hear it all,” he asks, I nod turning and starting the song, Alec sits in silence, swaying gently to the song. “Beautiful, as always,” he nudges me.
“Thank you,” I say.
“So that leaves one more song?” he asks.
“I think I have that one already,” I say. Before pushing out of my seat and grabbing my guitar. “It’s a bit different from my usual flow, but tell me what you think, it’s called I Think I’m In Love,” I say.
“Intriguing,” he says, I begin playing the sound just bouncing out of me. When I finish Alec gives me a standing ovation, and I give him a bow. “You are truly a songwriting extraordinaire,” he says.
“Thank you,” I say, setting down my guitar. “It looks like album three is finished,” I say, falling back onto the piano. “Now the hard stuff,”
“And now we drink, to celebrate the completion of your album,” Alec pulls me out of my seat and into my kitchen. Alec starts making me a drink and I slide into the barstool. “To completion” he says, holding out his drink, I grab my mine hitting our together.
“To completion,” I say. Lorelei and May, arrive back after Alec makes me a second drink, and Zahara comes over after my third. “I finished the album!” I announce, when she walks into the kitchen.
“Finally!” she says. “Jacob is going to happy! Something to bring the attention away from this whole scandal,” she says, setting her bags on the table. “Where is my little Lory?”
“In her playroom with May, who needs a raise by the way,” I say.
“I’ll look into it, in the meantime Alec make me drink,” Zahara falls into the seat beside me. “Demetra will be arriving next Monday,”
“Just Demetra?” I ask.
“I doubt it, probably her parents’ lawyers,” she says, before realizing she meant whether she knew if Braum would be tagging along. “I’m not sure, but you don’t have to handle any of that not if you don’t want to,”
“Do you know what her decision is?” I ask, she shakes her head.
“She’ll probably hand over the money, she doesn’t want to go to war with Jacob Dawson, trust and believe, that’s a battle not worth fighting,” Zahara says, before taking her drink from Alec. “Soon everything will be a thing of the past,”