Status: I'm working on it

A Scandal in Hollywood

All Nerves

I finally set my pencil down and let out a sigh of relief. I finally finished copying the notes. It took all afternoon and a little of my lunchtime to finish, but I was finally done. I looked at the clock and saw that it was 1:30. Well, I didn’t have any other classes today.

I picked my cell phone up from the nightstand and dialed Christine’s number. She picked up after four rings.

“Hello?” she answered, a little out of breath. I could hear a baby wailing in the background.

“Hey, it’s Laura. Is this a bad time?”

“No, it’s fine. Did you finish copying the notes? Do you need me to come and pick them up?” she asked eagerly.

“If you’re busy right now I can hold on to them-” I started to say, but she cut me off.

“I’ll be right over,” she said quickly. “Hey, Jeff! I have to go do something!”

Suddenly the line went dead and I looked down at my phone with a confused expression on my face. Ok then…

Ten minutes later I heard a knock on my door. I went to open it to see Christine standing there with a smile on her face.

“Thank you so much for calling! I needed an excuse to get out of the house. Jenny was about to drive me insane!” she exclaimed as she walked in.

“Jenny is your baby?” I asked, closing the door behind her. She nodded before looking around my apartment.

“Cute place,” she said. “Must have cost a lot though, to get an apartment this close to the college and in this area of the city.”

“I guess,” I said with a shrug.

She raised an eyebrow. “What do you mean?”

“Well, I don’t know how much it was,” I admitted. It never occurred to me to ask Brett how much it cost, and I wouldn’t want to be rude by asking either.

“Oh, your parents bought it for you?” she questioned.

“No, my boyfriend,” I said, even though I felt slightly uncomfortable talking to this stranger about my personal affairs. For some reason it was different with Christine than it was with the stranger in the park. Maybe it was because I knew I would probably never see him again, but I knew it was also because he had this…feeling that he radiated. It made me so calm and relaxed around him.

“Wow, you two must be serious. How long have you been dating?” she asked as she walked over to the window and looked down at the view.

“Around two months,” I answered hesitantly. I felt like if I told her she would judge me, or maybe it was just my own conscious, knowing that our relationship was rushed. She turned to look at me in surprise.

“Oh…” she trailed off. “Well, how long have you know each other?”

“Around two months,” I answered quietly, not bothering to stick around for her reply. I picked up the notes from my bed and walked back into the living room.

“Here,” I said, handing them to her.

“You moved in with a guy after only knowing him for two months?” she asked, raising an eyebrow.

“I didn’t technically move in with him,” I said, feeling defensive. “He bought me an apartment, and he lives in his own apartment.”

“So, he bought you an apartment after only knowing him for two months, and he doesn’t expect to live here with you or expect anything in return?” she asked, and I shook my head.

“Something smells fishy…” As if I didn’t already realize that.

“He just really loves me,” I replied, more to convince myself than her. Why couldn’t I make myself believe that? Why did I feel this way? I walked back into my room and Christine followed. She saw the open notebook on my bed and walked over to it.

“Theories about what?” she asked, reading my neat, cursive handwriting at the top of the page. I walked over to the notebook and closed it.

“In our Forensic Science class we’ve been studying what we can find out from the jawbones and teeth,” I explained. “I got a lower jaw to study but I just can’t see how you can tell anything about the person just by their teeth.”

“Tell me about it, maybe I can help,” she said with a shrug, sitting down on the bed next to me.

“Well, the teeth are in bad condition, but all I can deduce from that is that they took terrible care of their teeth.”

“Bad condition, how?”

“Well, the enamel looks completely worn away, and the back teeth are really worn, even more so than the front teeth.”

“Laura, isn’t it obvious?” she asked, an exasperated look on her face. I looked at her with a questioning look on my face.

She rolled her eyes. “They were vomiting constantly, that’s why the enamel is worn away, especially with the back teeth. It may have been from a disease which eventually killed them, or the more likely reason, they were bulimic. Eating disorders are more prominent among girls, so I can also guess that it’s a girl.”

“That was amazing, Christine. Thanks!” I said, hurriedly opening my notebook and jotting down notes.

“No prob,” she said. Suddenly there was a knocking at my door. I walked to the door, and was surprised to see Brett standing there.

“Hey, Brett.”

“Hey, babe,” he said, leaning forward to give me a kiss. “I have a surprise for you.”

“What is it?” I asked, suddenly curious.

“I’m taking you to meet my dad, right now,” he announced with a smile. I heard a scoff behind me to see Christine standing there.

“You call that a surprise?”

“Yes, it is. My dad just so happens to be a movie star,” Brett announced proudly.

“Oh, is he now?” Christine asked, sarcasm and disbelief dripping from her voice. “And just who is your famous, movie star father?”

“Neil McKelvey.”

Christine’s eyes suddenly widened and she looked from Brett to me.

“Is he serious?” she asked, and I nodded.

“Who is she?” Brett asked, eyeing Christine with irritation.

“She’s a friend,” I said. “She was helping me with my Forensic Science.”

“Ok. Well, are you ready to go, Laura?” Brett asked, holding out an arm to me. I took it and he turned to Christine.

“You’re welcome to come along if you don’t believe me,” he said with a smirk.

“I think I will,” she said, holding her head high as she walked out the door behind us. We all piled in Brett’s car with me in the passengers seat and Christine in the back. The drive to the studio was quick and by the time we got there both Christine and I were looking around the studio like children who were being taken to a theme park for the first time. We were just trying to take everything in and see all we could from the car windows as Brett pulled up to the security gate.

“Brett McKelvey,” Brett said, pulling out his license before the man waved him through, opening the gates. The movie lot wasn’t what I expected, it was just a bunch of building with numbers on them and sometimes a golf cart of two parked in front in the empty parking spaces. Brett pulled up into an empty parking space in front of a building with the number 326 and we all got out.

“Do you need a special badge or something to get in?” I asked as Brett led us up to the door.

“No, there’s no need. I come often enough that they all know me,” he replied with a shrug as he tugged it open. We walked in to see a security guard standing at the end of a long hallway with a door at the end.

“Hey, Brett,” he welcome him as he held the door open for us.

“Hey, Charlie. This is my girlfriend, Laura…and her friend Christy,” he said, adding the last part as an afterthought.

“Christine,” she corrected him with anger in her voice. Brett ignored her comment and led us into the room. Off to the side there with a big camera propped up on an expensive-looking piece of equipment. A directors chair sat near it and the camera was pointed at a car with a green screen behind it.

“They’re filming the car chase today,” Brett explained, grabbing my hand and leading it down a long hallway. We came to a door with a star on it and the name Neil McKelvey tacked on it. Brett knocked on the door and I held my breath. I have to admit, I’d never met a movie star before, and I was all nerves.

When I saw the door creak open I stepped behind Brett, suddenly scared. I looked over to see Christine standing next to Brett, a nervous look on her face.

“Hey, Brett,” I heard Neil say. He sounded sort of different than when he was on TV, and yet familiar at the same time.

“And you must be, Laura,” he said. I saw a hand extended to Christine. She laughed and Brett shook his head.

“No, Laura is…wait, where’d she go?” he turned around and spotted me. “Don’t be scared, Laura. It’s just my dad.”

“This is Laura, dad,” he said before turning back to his dad an moving out of the way.


I was surprised by the woman he moved to reveal behind him. She was so unlike Brett’s past girlfriends, yet I could see why she had captured his attention. Brett’s past girls had been girls with bright, piercing eyes and perfectly angled faces, like a model off the pages of a Victoria’s Secret magazine, with an hourglass figure that they had no shame showing off, but this girl was something totally different; I would go as far to say she was totally opposite.

She had big, baby blue innocent eyes and chipmunk cheeks that made her look baby-faced. She had a small frame that was well-covered with a loosely fitting jeans and a shirt with sleeves that went to her elbows. Her hair looked soft to the touch and it was carefully pulled back into a ponytail. I didn’t know much about angels or what they looked like, but if I had to describe her I would use that word. She was like a baby-faced, innocent little angel, maybe like a Cherub.

Her eyes searched mine uncertainly and I realized she was waiting for me to formally introduce myself. I stuck out my hand and gave her a smile, which she returned with dimples appearing, before she stuck out her own hand.

“Hello, Laura,” I said.

“Nice to meet you, Mr. McKelvey,” she said politely before taking my outstretched hand and shaking it.

“You’re dating my son, there’s no need for formalities. You can call me Neil,” I said, still holding onto her hand. She suddenly looked concerned as she glanced at my hand in hers.

“I think you have a fever, your hand is burning up.”

I pulled my hand away and stretched my hand out. It felt alright to me. Brett took my hand and felt it.

“Laura, it feels fine to me. Your hand is probably just cold,” Brett said with a shrug, dropping my hand.


I furrowed my eyebrow. I couldn’t have imagined the heat radiating from his hand, I know I’d felt it. I just shrugged and looked back at the ground. Why did I feel so flustered?

“And dad, this is Laura’s friend from college, Christine,” Brett introduced my friend. Neil stuck out his hand and they shook hands briefly before he turned back to Brett.

“Would you two ladies like a tour of the set?” Neil asked, and I looked up with a smile and nodded while Christine replied with an enthusiastic, ‘Yes!’

“Alright, we’ll start with the fight scene set that we’re currently filming,” he said with a grand sweep of his hand as he led us down a hallway lined with doors that all had names on them. I studied Neil as we walked along the hallway. It felt strange meeting him for the first time when I’d seen him so many times before in the movies. I thought I knew what he looked like, but he looked different off-camera.

In the movies he looked clean-shaven, and pristine. He still had his signature brown, curly hair that went down to his chin, but he was somewhat different from how I saw him in the magazines.

In real life, he looked different: he had dark circles under his eyes that looked like they were fading and his face had a few small scars on his cheeks and chin. In the movies his eyes were always so bright and green, but in real life they were a bit duller and a darker shade of green. Little differences to anyone, but I was trained to pick up on the details; it was something that my parents did as lawyers, and was engrained in me as a child.

I snapped back into reality when Neil opened a door to a large room with a balcony and a large, inflated mattress at the bottom.

“I get in a fight up there on the balcony then fall over the railing onto the mattress,” Neil explained.

“Don’t you have a stunt double to do that?” I asked.

“I do all my own stunts,” he said, turning to look at me with a smile that I couldn’t help but return.
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Well, Laura and Neil have officially met now. Any thoughts on the chapter?