My regular readers have probably noticed a new arc in the story. That’s because I have a special treat for you this week. Susan Helene Gottfried and I have combined our writing talents to bring you a two-sided story. Once you’ve read this, click here to see the other side of things.
“This is great!” Miranda did a little hop, almost bumping one of the security guards keeping the audience away from the stage.
She had really outdone herself on the hair this time. She’d used some kind of temporary dye to put in streaks of neon red, at least Vin hoped it was temporary dye. As if that weren’t enough, she added a half dozen tiny braids that nestled in the general poof of her hair and held stuff like beads, bells, and feathers. When she hopped, the bells rang.
A couple of other ShapeShifter fans next to her gave her sharp looks and grumbled. Vin wrapped an arm around her, feeling protective and indulgent, but Miranda was in no mood to hold still, and hopped so much he had to let go.
“Look!” Miranda screamed and pointed. A roadie came out on the stage wearing all black except for a pair of brown gloves tucked in at the waist. “Do you think that’s Roadie Poet? I read about him on the official web site. It is! I bet it is!” She did some more bunny imitations.
Vin grinned. She was wearing an oversized, scoop-necked shirt cut short to show her belly button. When she jumped around, he could see the red satin bra he’d bought her
Miranda wasn’t the only one screaming. Apparently the roadie had a regular following.
“You’re really into this, aren’t you,” Vin said. “You get tickets for concerts all the time from that advertising job, but I’ve never seen you like this.”
“You kidding? ShapeShifter is the best! Wait until you see Mitchell’s hair. Did you know there was one time it was green? They tried to fob it off on the lighting, but I heard from someone on the internet that it was from spending too much time in a pool. Look! There he is!”
Miranda screamed like a teenager, right along with nearly everyone else up front. Vin plugged his ears. Sure, he liked the band, but it was only a rock band. It wasn’t like the adrenaline rush he got when he and Drew took down Sean and Joseph O’Connor. It wasn’t like listening to music could kill you.
The lights flashed. The guy on the guitar wind-milled his arm, bringing out an electric wail, and the band was off. It was great. For the first half an hour everything was perfect. He and Miranda boogied their butts off. He couldn’t wait to get her home and do a different kind of boogie.
Then Miranda got that evil little giggle she sometimes got when she was going to do something incredibly stupid. He heard it in the pause between songs. She stuffed her hands up under her sloppy shirt and wriggled around. He watched her pull down one red strap, and then another. Vin wasn’t sure if he should be getting turned on or pissed off.
He made up his mind when she yanked the bra he’d given her out of the front of her shirt and threw it on stage, right in front of the singer. Pissed off it was.
“What are you doing?!” He grabbed Miranda’s arm. She ignored him completely, still doing her hopping thing, which only made him madder.
Mitchell, the one with the long white hair, reached down and picked up the bra. He held it up for everyone to see, then passed it to the drummer, and finally to the guitar player.
Vin wanted to yell at them. He wanted them to give it back. Miranda had no business throwing away something he’d given her, and then to have everyone making fun of it like that….
Mitchell stripped off the shirt he was wearing. He handed it to one of the security people and the guys on stage pointed Miranda out. Vin’s rage turned white hot. Bad enough for Miranda to act like an idiot, but to take the singer’s shirt…. He couldn’t stand it.
When the security guard got close, and the teeny boppers around them went nuts, Miranda looked like she was ready to crawl over the top of everyone to get that T-shirt. Considering how short her skirt, any kind of crawling would tell everyone a lot more about her underwear than he wanted anyone but him to know. She could be such an idiot sometimes.
Fine. Vin reached over the crowd and took the T-shirt. It was wet and stinky from sweat, but he kept a firm grip on it. This was exactly the sort of thing Miranda would crow about. She’d want to show it to everyone, starting with Suzie who you get a motherly, tolerant smile and be completely unimpressed. She’d tell everyone at work. Then she’d wash it up and pack it away somewhere.
She tried to take the T-shirt from his hands, but he didn’t let go. He looked down at her pleading face. Maybe she was just beginning to understand how angry he was. That she realized it at all should probably count as a miracle.
“Are you mad?” She mouthed the question with more exaggeration than the music required.
He stared at the stage.
He still didn’t look at her, even when the lights flashing behind the band nearly blinded him.
She bumped him, a friendly little nudge.
He finally gave in, grinning at her as he put an arm around her. But he didn’t give her the shirt yet. Yeah, he would give it to her. When he was good and ready.
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Want to see it from the band’s point of view? Click here.