Everyone's in place and is watching us with enthralled and eager expressions.
Well fuck, this is gonna be harder than I thought. Even though it's just the first scene, Dan and I are meant to lock in an epically long and meaningful gaze before I run out. Barf!
Basically what happens in this scene is that I and a team of trained assassins infiltrate the Parisian headquarters of Je Suis, the assassination team that keeps killing off our bad crime committing clients.
There's fighting and there's an explosion and a standoff between Dan and I. We're going to go through 10 minutes of the movie in one go, no stopping. So it's really demanding physically seeing as 7 of those ten minutes are spent fighting.
It doesn't affect me as much though because I've been discreetly trained over the past month, apparently Adam accepted the role a while ago and made the whole team get personal trainers, I had to train more fiercely because I was 'the lead singer'. I guess that's true to a certain degree. But still!
Me and Dan had to end up falling in love with eachother, and there were some scenes that I was seriously not looking forward to but hey, this was going to kick start the career I'd been dreaming of ever since I started to pretend like I was Goldilocks after I read the book.
'And..ACTION!' Geoff boomed.
I quickly escaped my colliding thoughts and slid into the character of Kylie Willows. One of the most experienced assassinators of Bringing Your End or BYE.
I look around at the in- character extras. All of them are martial arts trained and all of them about to die.
'I want a quick job people, I wanna be back in time for home phoning, remember, target must be neutralized, if you find that we're outnumbered, fall back and don't hesitate' I state the facts to my crew.
Curt nods were my reply and we started to move toward the door.
The camera zoomed in on our formation before backing out as we began to make our way through the 'lasers'. Guns pointing at random corners as we kept a sharp lookout.
One of the experts made their way through the laser maze and deactivated them. Our 'hacker' broke into the network and disabled all the security commands and set HQ self-destruct to 10 minutes.
The bomb was placed on the door and we all stood back. The camera came back with us as we waited for the explosion.
And once that door blew open, all hell broke loose, figuratively speaking of course.
We rushed the enemy, taking out as many as we could. It felt weird because I wasn't even touching the people I was 'hitting' and they still crumpled to the floor in convincing agony.
Each person in my specialised team had their own camera so that the director could show selected footage of all of us fighting.
The fighting scene continued until one of my teammates, who happens to be my best friend, falls at the hand of Dan.
With a vengeful motive, I make my way to Dan and both of us become locked in a deadly fight. One by one, all of my mates except one are killed and the boss of Je Suis who happens to be Jake Gyllenhaal aka Ivan Korkaroff gets away.
'You shouldn't have come here' Nick (we have to call eachother by our character names so that it becomes a habit) hisses as he leans over me, two swords from both our hands crossing over one another in a strong lock.
I pretend to kick him in the stomach and swing the sword at him.
'You're wrecking business for us, we're here to get rid of the blimp on the radar' I spit back with equal venom in my voice. You see, BYE is the type of assassination group that runs on a system like E-bay. Highest bidder wins. We're either sold off as body guards or assassins. Kylie is meant to be the most respected assassin in the underworld. No one could buy her, she chose to save or kill for you.
Dan and I had practised this routine in the half hour that Geoff had given us, and I admit that maybe I got a little too rough with him, but with how he left things between us, he had it coming. Too bad that in this scene, things don't end my way.
'Ha! Well, how about you tell your people to call my people?' he asks as he dodges my roundhouse kick, instead he grabs my leg and slams me into the ground, I let the swords fall out of my hands as I 'struggle' under his grip.
He unsheathes his knife from his belt and prepares to kill me when the last of my BYE mates lunges at him with his own knife, wounding him.
Nick staggers back in pain but only for a bit.
'Go, this place will come down any minute' my comrade urges, eyes flicking to a recovering Nick.
I gotta say, this extra is pretty damn good.
'I'll try and eliminate this one, GO!' he pushes me out the door and presses the button to seal it, the last I see is of him being stabbed through the heart and Nick staring at me intently.
Camera's zoom up in both of our faces before I turn around and start to run as the lights go off…
'CUT!' Geoff booms, his hands clasped together in glee.
'Fantastic work you guys! Great acting, great skills, great mood! And Nicki! I do believe we have a future Oscar winner!' he beams at me.
'It'll only be coz of you Geoffie!' I smile back good-heartedly to him.
I'm so pumped after that first scene but I'm not needed back at the studio until 4:00pm so I've got a good few hours to burn.
'Nicki, you've got to record your voice over for the film with Striker'
Ugh! There goes my free time…
Begrudgingly I make my way over to the recording rooms where Dan's already wired up and waiting.
I walk into the rooms and acknowledge him with a small nod.
'Dan- I mean, Nick' I mentally slap myself for forgetting the exercise to stay in character.
Nick has a bemused expression on his face and I can see him holding back his chuckles.
'Kylie' he nods back.
'Alright, we've got a lot to get through so I need to get at least a third of the voice overs done and Nicki wired up before 4 because you're needed on set again'. Tiffany, the technician for the voice over stated.
In 5 minutes I had my barely there high quality recording microphone stuck on me and Nick and Kylie were standing in a white walled room. I awkwardly shifted about, I didn't know what to do when it came to voice acting.
'It's basically acting, but into a microphone instead of a camera' Dan explained.
'Well thank you Captain obvious! I knew that, I just don't understand why we-' I pointed to the both of us 'Have to be put into the same room for it'.
He chuckles as if he's the wisest man in the world.
'It helps us act it out better, when we speak our lines to someone, natural actors instincts kick in and we act out the words. Think about, if you just sat in front of a big microphone, alone in a room, like the cheap low grade movie director's make people do, do you honestly think that your expression, your belief in the role, would be the same?' he says passionately.
I blink in momentary shock. At that moment, I could see the love of acting in Dan Strikers eyes. He didn't act for the fame or the money or the perks. He acted simply because he enjoyed it.
And honestly? What's not to enjoy about it? Believe me when I say that it's easier to be someone else than yourself. Ironic huh?
'Alright, your first few lines are reflective, they're to no character, it's to the audience, get in your role and Nick-'
'Look around me, I was just wondering… could we stop calling eachother by character names? Instead of helping me… it just confuses me, whenever someone calls out Nick I feel as if they're talking to me and I just get hopelessly lost' I cut Tiffany off.
Through the sound-proof glass Tiffany blinks at me, the expression makes me burst into laughter because she's got those massive headphones on and, all-in-all, it makes her look like a monkey.
'Errm, sure?' she finally manages, not before sizing me up and debating on whether or not her opinion of me is sane or insane.
'Dan, you're on in five, four, three, two…one' the red recording light lit up and Dan turned from an obnoxious, jack ass player to one of the world's most deadliest assassins.
He stepped forward as he began reciting his lines.
'Love' He scoffs. 'Who has time for love? Love is an inescapable obstacle in people's paths. It can only lead to heartbreak and suffering. You fall for someone, vow to dedicate your life to someone and they either rip your heart out, or abandon you with their death. Love is not welcome at Je Suis. Love is a target. And I intend to neutralize it should it ever come my way. I'm Nick Fords, top assassinator of Je Suis. The cases I get have a near impossible success rate stamped next to them. I go after the most powerful criminals and terrorists in the world. I'm the reason there's a worldwide wanted list. I'm the reason suspicious activities were occurring worldwide and I'm the reason BYE is staging their own personal attack on our HQ right at this moment.
He chooses that moment to look right at me, and I'm shocked to the core by his blazing expression.
'Anndd… cut!' You can hear the awed smile in Tiffany's voice. 'Nice Dan, we don't need another take on that I think, I'll let you know what Geoff thinks of it'
The deadly glow from Dan's eyes fade as he breaks into a shy smile, cheeks turning the slightest shade of red and body scrunching up sheepishly.
Dear Lord! Dan the great is blushing??
I smile at him, a genuine one. He doesn't seem to be that bad when the papanazzi's (yes, I kept the name) are around…or Sasha for that fact…or anyone even remotely related to the media.
'And Nicki, you're on in five, four, three, two…one'. The light blinks on for me too and I take a deep breath, stepping into the world of Kylie Willows.
'Never send a guy to do a girls job.' I look at Dan, a hateful expression instantly taking over my face as I continue 'Je Suis had a lot of balls assassinating one of our suppliers right in front of me, It didn't take long for me to convince Violetta to let me stage an attack on their base, with the intention of killing their boss and the guy who delivered the kill. He was stupid not to cover his eyes though, it's amazing how easily you can find a target by just the colour of their eyes, if things all go according to plan, my face will be the last to see those eyes shining with life. I am after all BYE's best, I have a 98% success rate and 99.5% shooting accuracy. She had complete faith in me, and our squad has a combined 50 years of experience. We might not kill Ivan Korkaroff today, but we'll definitely scar him, because if you mess with BYE, you sure as hell are Bringing Your End.'
A shot of me bringing out my swords as the door explodes in the opening scene is meant to play in the movie before I say my next line.
'Oh, and by the way, I'm Kylie Willows'
'Anndd…CUT! Wow!' Tiffany breathes. 'I get the feeling that today we're gonna get heaps done because hot damn you guys are good!'
Dan and I exchange a glance of mutual respect before launching ourselves into hours of acting to no one in particular and finishing the estimated one third of voice overs exactly on 4.
'Noo' I groan, surprisingly exhausted with all the energy voice acting took out of me. I still had another 2 or so hours of filming to go before I was done for the day.
'Not all its cut up to be huh?' Dan appears out of nowhere and strides along with me to Studio 7.
I ignore his existence until he grabs my elbow and spins me around, an uncertain expression on his face.
'Why are you going to Studio 7?' he asks slowly. As if I was stupid.
'To film you idiot!' I snapped, pulling my arm out of his hands and resisting the crazy tingling he's left there.
He was probably holding on too hard.
'Ummm, it may surprise you to know that sometimes we actually film on location Nicki. We're off to a little café in Paris to film a scene, it's when Kylie and Nick first meet, but as normal strangers not assassins' he smile's a bit too happy for my liking.
'Oh joy!' I sardonically mutter as he tows me to the waiting limo.
'I know, we get pressed up in a narrow alleyway because two guys are trying to shoot us' he slyly smiles my way as he slides into the limo.
My mouth gapes open. I didn't think that those types of scenes were being shot so early!
'Well, at least I don't have to worry about getting some other girls saliva being shoved down my throat because you've been with me practically the whole day…regrettably' I mutter the last bit.
'Oh come on! At least, for the sake of the cast and crew, don't bring our past into this. Because when we get there Nicki, you and I aren't Dan and Nicki Striker we're- what?'
I raise my eyebrow at him questioningly. He stops and looks at me before it dawns on him what he's just said.
'I mean, you know, I'm not Dan and you're not Nicki' he scrambles, trying to correct his mistake.
'Nooo, I'm Nicki Turner but on set I'm Kylie Willows, You however are more than Dan Striker, you're an annoying, self- absorbed, stuck up jerk, who, on set, just happens to transform into passionately convincing Nick Fords.' I smirk, failing to realise that I insulted and complimented him in one go.
'You have a talent for insulting and complimenting people at the same time don't you?' Dan asks, brow raised disapprovingly, though I can see the glimmer of amusement in his eyes.
'Meh, it's a gift and curse' I shrug.
"You think I'm a 'passionately convincing Nick'?" he asks, grinning as he adds air quotation marks around my words.
'Yup' I answer honestly, popping the 'p'.
When Dan goes still beside me I sigh, knowing he's trying to think up of an explanation.
'When you act, you're so crazy good I sometimes question if the actual Dan Striker is really Dan at all…'
Dan's eyes are thoughtful and he opens his mouth to reply before a ringtone cuts him off.
He answers the phone without taking his eyes off me.
'Hello?' his body shifts and his voice lowers ' Oh hi…Sasha..'
I stiffen, reality crashing into me as the limo slows to a stop. Not waiting around, I get out and find the waiting Geoff trying to explain to a poor intern the exact way he wants his coffee to be made.
Dan's voice becomes farther behind me and Kylie Willows character is slowly creeping back into me.
A/N - This chappy is wwaayy longer than all my others... over 2000 words actually :O And seeing as it's the weekend again, I'm positive another update will be heading your way soon! Please comment or like? You know what? You guys have no IDEA how big of a grin I get when I see that you've commented or liked the chapter! I feel awesome knowing that people would actually come back to my profile to read the novel...so.. thanks :)<3