Wardrobe Malfunction(2)By: Samantha Towle
I blink, glancing around.
Piper’s and Cain’s faces are frozen, like I guess mine is. And Bradford just has this smug expression on his face.
“What?” I laugh, but it sounds uneasy, even to my own ears. “You’re kidding, right? This is a joke.” I even look around to see if Ashton Kutcher is waiting to tell me I’ve been punked.
“It’s no joke.” Bradford’s eyes flick to the big screen behind him, and there’s a picture of Cain and Piper in an embrace, outside what looks like a hotel room door.
It’s fake. It has to be. Because Cain would never do that to me.
I squeeze my eyes shut.
But I know it’s not a fake.
Because I know this industry. I know this asshole wouldn’t risk his career on a rumor or a fake picture. He must have authenticated it. He wouldn’t have done this on live television without die-hard facts and the proof to back it up because he knows he’d have his ass sued if he were lying.
My heart sinks into the pit of my stomach.
“This is bullshit!” Piper snaps.
I open my eyes and look at her. She’s pissed.
It’s because she’s been caught. And caught so publicly.
My eyes flick past her to Cain.
The contriteness in his expression is all the confirmation I need.
And I feel sick.
There’s commotion all around. I can hear people yelling from off camera. Piper is screaming for them to turn the cameras off.
That’s what she cares about right now.
Not me. Not the fact that my heart is being broken on live television by my cheating-ass girlfriend. But, worse, by my friend, whom I trusted. The guy I’ve known for ten years.
Ten fucking years.
My head starts to cloud.
I’m no longer on live television with an audience of people sitting there.
I’m staring at my best friend, and rage is firing in my bloodstream.
I get to my feet. “Is it true?” I say to him, my voice trembling with anger.
Cain gets to his feet, facing me. “I’m sorry,” he says.
“You’re sorry?” I laugh without a trace of humor.
Then, I punch him.
Hard. In the face.
Three Months Later
“Up and out!”
The sound of hands clapping and Jack, my manager’s, voice split through my head like an ax on wood.
Groaning, I mumble, “Fuck off, Jack. I’m sleeping.” My voice is muffled by the pillow my face is buried in.
Sunlight and warmth hit my back a second later as the curtains are pulled open.
“For fuck’s sake,” I grumble.
“Ladies, get dressed, and be on your way. A car is waiting for you downstairs to take you home,” Jack says with that no-nonsense tone of his.
I feel movement on the bed. Limbs and bodies climb over me and off the bed.
Alcohol. Lots of alcohol.
A redhead who could deep-throat like a champ and a brunette with legs that went on for miles.
Lots of it.
At the party. In the limo on the way back to the hotel suite I’ve been living in these last few months. The sofa. The bed.
Well, the usual for me now.
Stretching my aching body, I lift my head. The sunlight blinds me. Rubbing a hand over my face, I blink through the haze. My eyes meet with Jack’s.
He’s standing there, his arms folded over his chest, a disapproving frown on his face.
He wears that look a lot when looking at me nowadays.
The girls are moving around the room, picking up the debris of their clothes from last night’s activities.
“What?” I bite at him.
He says nothing. Just shakes his head.
His stare is making me uncomfortable. It’s the disappointment in his eyes that bothers me the most.
In a business filled with sharks, Jack isn’t one. He’s loyal. To me. His wife. His kids.
For all these years, I’ve stayed clean in a city full of dirt with his help and because of my family back home.
Well, I was clean. Now, I’m a helluva lot dirty.
My eyes flit to the girls as they quickly dress.
Shame spreads through my chest.
This isn’t me…
At least, it wasn’t me.
Sure, I’ve done one-night stands in the past. I’ve slept with women with no promise of more.
But this—the endless nights of drinking and fucking, and then rinse and repeat—isn’t me.