................ Flying, some people love it some people hate it, but when everyone on board the aircraft is as good as family then you have to submit and love flying and when the guys outnumber the girls at least fifty to one it is more than a little crazy.
“Damn we’re in England” Alfie threw his arm over my shoulder as we stood up and Pete pulled the bags from the overhead locker “We’re actually in England as in across the Atlantic and Fish and Chip and Crumpets and Jam”
“Dude you were here with your family last summer” Kerion chuckled as we waited to get off the plane
“I know but that was running round in London visiting family” Alfie laughed “We’re here supporting Nickelback… we’re a bunch of kids supporting a huge band”
“I swear to you this is the last time you get to hold the bag of pixie stix” I laughed as Pete handed me my bag from the locker
“You know I don’t think that’s really sunk in yet I mean that we are doing this” Pete handed Kerion his bag before closing the door, he looked round at the three of us standing there “ I mean come on a month ago we were all in high school”
“Chance of a lifetime guys…How could we pass it up” I sighed as I stepped off of the plane onto the jet way. The sound of a steady drum from rain as it hit the metal roof made me want the heat of Florida
“Welcome to Manchester” the girl standing there smiled giddy that the guys from Nickelback had already got off the flight, I wondered if we’d ever have people look like that after we got off a plane. Slightly star struck, but we hadn’t even done our first show and we only had a month with them, bands had done this sort of thing before and never been heard from again.
“Thanks” Kerion beamed taking my hand and pulling me forward snapping me out of my thoughts, we followed everyone else toward immigration. We had to wait in line with the rest of the crew that had traveled with us while the Band was taken through a VIP gate.
“The bags are all being taken to the hotel” Elena walked back toward us “Are you all okay after the flight?” her accent showed her lack of Jet lag but what did you expect when you were in Business and the rest of us were in Cattle class.
“Yes Ma’am” Alfie nodded he’d finally got used to her thick Russian accent
“Good” She caught my chin in between her thumb and forefinger “Chris?”
“I’m fine” I shrugged “I didn’t get much sleep with the noisy game of poker going on with these guys and the Sound techs” I poked Kerion in the ribs and he flashed me his biggest grin
“And you had to say good bye to Dimitri” she smiled a little at the thought of her son
“Yes Ma’am” I nodded “and my sister” Oh that stung the thought of the look on the face of my little sister when I told her I wasn’t going to be home for a month, and the fact Dimitri while telling me he was fine with it really wasn’t’ it was in his body langue when he’d kissed me good bye at the airport in Tampa
“Call them a little later” She patted my cheek
“I will” I sighed and looked at the time on my phone and tried to work out the time difference “They’re what 5 hours behind us?”
“Yes, but I think calling them at 1.30 in the morning wouldn’t be a good thing when they both have school” She let go of my chin and walked off shouting something to one of the crew making him jump out of his skin. If nothing else Elena Carpov was one intimidating woman.
“You’re going to call him as soon as we get to the hotel aren’t you?” Alfie laughed putting his head on my shoulder.
“Oh yeah” I smiled He was waiting on the call that much I did know. We walked out as the crew was getting onto buses, A Limo indicated to pull away obviously with the band inside, How the other half lived I ran my fingers through my hair and shivered against the damp air.
‘You think that’ll be us one day?” Kerion whistled
“If we work hard and people like us then why not” I nudged his arm “and you don’t keep me up at night or I will kill you and we’d then need to replace you” I pushed my tongue out at him
“Oh thanks…so feeling the love” he groaned as I moved to get on the bus
“Chris” I stopped and looked round as the limo had stopped moving out into the steady Airport traffic. Elena was standing out if the door of the limo “bring the boys with you” I looked at the guys Pete looked at me and shrugged
“Hey, you guys we need to talk to you” Chad put his head out of the window before pushing open the door. I still couldn’t help myself but grin like an idiot rather like the girl on the jetway, I was star struck still. I walked over following Alfie with Pete and Kerion next to me “Get in” We got in and it was like a bunch of fish in a net with all of us crammed in there with Nickelback and there management team of Simon, Lukas and Elena and all of Neverwest.
“Okay I think there’s way more room in the bathroom on the airplane” I groaned as I squeezed in between Kerion and Lukas and laughed as Alfie elbowed Pete in the face.
“Yeah maybe we should have waited till we got to the hotel” Simon sighedlooking around at the packed limo “I hope no one is claustrophobic”
“Bit late if we are” Kerion chuckled as the limo moved away from the sidewalk and followed the bus with the crew on. “
“We didn’t want to wait” Mike said shaking his head “We wanted to talk now before we get swamped with interviews and everything else that goes along with this” we looked at him
“Er… not meaning to sound stupid but we don’t know what happens” I chewed my lip and tried not to look directly at the band in case I woke from this dream Chad said something to Dan and then smiled and looked back at us
“Okay you guys need to get into the hotel, shower, change, grab food and then you’ll be heading to Arena” Chad looked at each of us pointedly I wrung my hands damn sweaty palms “You need to sound check as soon as possible because while we’re here you and I…” he pointed at me I raised my eyebrow at him, he offered a warm smile “…are going to be working on a song and Kerion you will work with Dan, Mike and Pete and then Alfie and Ryan so we…”
“Chad we don’t have the time?” Lukas sighed as he texted with one hand and held his other phone to his ear who said men couldn’t multitask.
“We’ll make the time for these guys” Chad said firmly as he fixed Lukas with a look of don’t piss me off “We took the chance on them and we’ll do everything we can to make it work” he looked at me “How’s the throat?” he pointed to the fading bruises on my neck
“Better” I nodded feeling a little self conscious knowing everyone in the car right now knew that just over two weeks ago I’d been attacked and raped by my ex in a parking lot of a restaurant I wished I’d got a scarf on.
“I want to hear you do ‘Side of a bullet’ right” There was enough firmness in his voice I knew he wasn’t going to take it easy on me but then I guess it was their name on the line by even taking us on this leg of the tour
“Yes Sir” I nodded I knew he’d picked that one because it pushed my voice to its limit
“And the new song that Alfie wrote” I felt my jaw go slack
‘But we haven’t finished it” Kerion looked at him slight panic edging into his voice “It’s not anywhere near…”
“I know but we’ve heard the range that Chris has to get on that” Dan looked at him “and if she’s struggling with it we can get her throat looked at before the gig in two days time” the driver pulled into the underground parking garage at the hotel and got out and opened the door ending up with Alfie falling out in a heap at his feet. He helped Alfie up and
“You have just over an hour” Elena called after us as we all got out.
Lukas handed us all our room keys, we had two rooms with an adjoining door. I lay back on the bed and pulled my phone from my bag as the porter brought in the cases stacking them on the racks in the small closet space.
“Hey Chris you want first shower?” Pete asked putting his head round the door from the bathroom.
“No you go I’m calling Dimi” he nodded and closed the door I hit the speed dial and it was answered on the first ring
Dimi * Эй, малыш ... Я скучаю по тебе (Hey baby… I miss you)
Me * oh that’s so not fair talking to me in Russian when you’re not here
Dimi * I’m sorry… I miss you schools going to suck so bad
Me * I know But it’s only a month… oh I practiced something for you
Dimi * what?
Me * Я люблю тебя (I love you)
Dimi * Я тоже тебя люблю (I love you too)… nice job
Me * thank you, you still need to teach me more
Dimi * oh I will the next chance I get to see you
Me * any idea when?
Dimi * nope it’s all down to grades and when Mom agrees, Oh and Niko says hi and break a leg
Me * Tell him thanks… Look call me when you’re at lunch or something I have to go and sound check
Dimi * okay Baby I love you and I’ll talk to you later
Me * Я тоже тебя люблю (I love you too)
Dimi * okay now you’re showing off
I hung up the phone and looked at the ceiling, I missed him Dimitri was the first person I’d felt safe with since leaving Arron and Wisconsin…Now we were on different continents and it was going to be hard with to hold it together…………