Status: New

A Day at a Time

Five

Charlie lets herself into her mother's house. Melissa and her mom are waiting at the table with food sprawled out. She greets them, pulling out her chair. "Mom, you didn't have to do all of this. Thank you."
Charlotte smiles at her daughters, "I won't be able to do this forever, you know. Besides, it's so nice to see you girls together. How are you settling in, Charlie?"
She shrugs while grabbing a plate of waffles, "It's not all bad, I suppose. Work is not exactly what I like, it's nothing like back home. I've been hanging out with my neighbor, who owns the bar downstairs. We're going out tonight."
Melissa grins at Charlie from beside her. She is happy to hear that her sister isn't as miserable here as she acts.
"Where are you going?" Melissa inquires.
"We're going to a concert, nothing big. No one I've ever heard of but it should be fun," Charlie blows it off, not wanting to go into the details of last night or who this guy is. she changes the subject, "How are you feeling, mom?"
Since the diagnosis, Charlotte has been living one day at a time. She has regular visits with her doctor to monitor her progress and treat the symptoms as they come. As of now, her doctors do not know how much longer she may have but they have kept her comfortable and mobile with the right medications.
"I'm alright, sweetheart. You don't have to worry about me, I have my own doctors for that."
Charlie rolls her eyes, "And when will I meet them, mom? I do have some questions of my own. I just want to make sure you're getting the best care."
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Gerald texted Charlie the address earlier this afternoon, telling her that her name was on the guest list.
"Would you mind if I brought a friend?" She texted back.
She received a text shortly after, "Is she hot?"
She rolled her eyes, not replying.
Alex meets Charlie at her apartment around six o'clock. She's wearing black high waisted leggings with sneakers and a cardigan over a caged crop top. Charlie kept her look casual, dressing in sneakers with ripped jeans and a black bomber jacket over a plain white t-shirt.
The venue was only about thirty minutes from where they live, in the Bay area. When they arrive there are hundreds of people lined up near the doors. Mostly young women, a few who have dragged their begrudge boyfriends along from the look. They make their way past the crowd, directly to the bouncer, "Charlie Dae plus one."
He nods at her, opening the doors and allowing them through. When they enter the venue Gerald is in front of a camera with fans, doing meet and greets. He looks over quickly and excuses himself momentarily, jogging over.
"Hey, thanks for coming! You can go through those doors over there. Meet the crew, I'll be there in a few!" He smiles at them and directs them to the doors before going back to his fans.
Alex grins at Charlie, "This is so cool."
Charlie rolls her eyes, "It's no big deal, he's just a man. You realize you hosted this same shit last night, right?"
Alex rolls her eyes back at Charlie and grabs her hand pulling her in back. Through the doors, there are more people than Charlie had anticipated. They made there way over to the bar and order drinks. Alex looks over at Charlie inquisitively, "I thought you didn't drink?"
"I think I'll need one tonight."
Alex laughs and shrugs. A man with a camera around his neck makes his way over to the bar, leaning towards her, "Hey, I'm Grady. What's your name?"
Alex glances nervously at Charlie then back towards Grady, "I'm Alex."
"Didn't I see you at the show last night?"
Alex nods and laughs, "I own the bar. I'm not following you, I swear."
Charlie leaves the two alone to flirt and leans against a wall taking everyone in. She sees others, who she assumes to be the opening performers, all huddled up with their hands in the center. She smiles to herself, it's cute. There are people running around with G-Eazy crew shirts on, bringing items on stage and putting the show together. She sips her drink and see's Gerald rounding the corner. He smiles at her and walks over, leaning against the wall, "It's cool, isn't it?"
"What is?"
"All of this, I mean shit... I do it all the time but it still never feels real. This is my first hometown show in a while, it's going to be lit."
She turns her head to looks at him, taking in his features. He has that smile again, it's so genuine and honestly, it's adorable.
"Let me introduce you to some of the crew. Come on," he grabs her hand and tugs her toward the crowd. Charlie grimaces, she's more of a wallflower in a situation like this. She glances over and sees Alex who is deep in conversation with Grady, still.
"Hey, guys. This is Charlie, the one that saved my ass after the last show." G introduces her to his team, a few guys around them. They laugh and one pats her on the shoulder, "I've got to thank you for getting him out of there. That could've been some bad publicity. I'm his manager, Matty."
Charlie laughs with him, "Don't worry, I've already alerted the press."
G rolls his eyes and touches her lower back, leaning down to her ear, "Come with me, let's get a drink."
"I don't really think you need a drink."
"One, before the show. Think of it as a ritual."
He leads her to the bar and orders whiskey neat, "And for you?"
"Vodka punch," Charlie orders, making a reference to one of his older songs.
"Have you been doing your research?" He smirks down at her.
"Don't flatter yourself."
Gerald grins and drowns his drink, "Alright, I'm up." He leans down and whispers in her ear, "Enjoy the show," and jogs over to his team. Again, Charlie witnesses a cute little circle. They break apart and Gerald cheers, "From the Bay to the Universe" followed by the crew.
The show was amazing, Charlie and Alex viewed from backstage. The crowd was pumped and loud, cheering for Gerald. The floor shook with fans jumping. It was a good energy.
“Hey, would you be cool if I stayed after the concert? Grady wanted to hang,” Alex asked, turning to Charlie once the music ceased.
“Yeah, totally. I’m going to head out - I have my first day shift tomorrow.”
When Gerald comes off the stage he runs back, high-fiving his crew. He has the largest smile decorating his face. He walks towards Charlie and drapes an arm over her shoulder, lips brushing against her ear, “let's get out of here.”
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