Guys, don't be confused. Briana's brother's name is Eric and then there's Eric from the web show. I don't even know why I did that, ok.
Chapter 23: The Award Ceremony
Eric walked me back up to my room just like a true gentleman. When we approached, I turned to him and smiled. "This is me."
He nodded. "So I see that." I shrugged, pretty much unsure what to say. "I've had a great time with you today. You're a real amazing girl Briana."
"Thanks," I said smiling. "Sometimes I really need to hear something like that."
He smiled, grabbed my hand and then pulled me into a big hug. "Sometimes pretty girls need to hear amazing things." I tightened my grip around his neck.
"You're not so bad yourself." He laughed as we separated, "I'll be seeing you tomorrow night."
"I wouldn't miss it for the world." He smiled once more before he turned around and began his trek back downstairs.
Just as I was about to unlock the door to my room with the room key, it came open in a drift and Liz was standing there with red bushy eyes. "THERE YOU ARE!" She screamed pulling me into a hug. I hugged her back just because I didn't like to see Liz cry.
"Where on earth were you? We looked all over the place," she said letting me go and pulling me inside of the room where Ian and Alexander were.
"Briana," they both exclaimed. Alexander stood up and hugged me and then right after him Ian. The way that Ian sheltered me in his arms, I could tell that they were all worried sick that something bad might have happened to me.
"Don't give us another scare like that," he said into my neck.
Our door, which was partially closed, opened revealing Liam, Lucas, Kaleb, and Eric. "No sign of her down-" Lucas started until he saw me. "Princess!" He screamed. It seemed like at this very moment, everyone wanted to hug me and never let me go.
"You guys would you please chill," I said as they un-smothered me. "I was fine. I just needed some fresh air."
"Still," Eric said. "You couldn't have warned us beforehand on anything that was going on."
I sighed. "Yeah. Sorry," I muttered as I sat up. I looked at them all and their worried faces came on me in a bundle. "You guys, cheer up. I haven't been raped or killed. I'm okay. Just believe that."
"We do believe that," Alexander said. "We were just still worried. You wouldn't know since you were the one missing."
"Well, I know now. So just like calm your nerves and chillax." They rolled their eyes at me. "So what do we have planned for today?"
"Weeeeee," Liam said pulling out this list in his back pocket. "Well, Lucas, Ian and I were going to go talk to the gym."
"And Alexander and I were gonna go roam the mall," Liz said looking at Eric. "We asked Eric, but he'd rather sleep. You know him."
"I don't blame him," I said stretching. They looked at me. "Actually I have to prepare a speech for tomorrow just in case I win. Isn't that weird? It's like mandatory."
"It is pretty weird." Lucas said.
"And I'm also seeing what I have to web show about tonight or whatever, so yeah. My night is pretty packed."
"So we see," Ian said. He turned to Kaleb. "How about you tell everyone what you'll be doing tonight."
"How about I don't," he muttered.
"Don't be ashamed," Liz said. I raised an eyebrow and Liz looked at me. "He asked Dell out! Can you believe that?" My mind couldn't even wrap around that idea. I couldn't even look at him because I knew that I'd probably either cry or throw a punch at him. I sat there silently mesmerizing over the fact that he could do that. "Earth to Bri?"
I looked up. "Oh yeah," I said. "That's wonderful." I bit my tongue. "Okay, um I have to shower and stuff." I stood up slowly and made my way to the bathroom.
As I leaned in the shower, I still couldn't comprehend the fact that Kaleb actually asked one of my friends out. I guess I couldn't actually blame her since she didn't know that Kaleb and I were something or nothing, actually I didn't know what we were right now since he was technically like cheating on me in essence if that makes sense. I had all the right in the world to be mad at him since he was doing this to me and I actually want to be with him.
I sighed and turned off the water. I leaned out some, grabbed my towel, wrapped it around my body and then opened the shower curtain. Once I did that, I was staring right at Kaleb. I bit my lip and looked at him. I didn't have the courage to step out of the shower.
"You look nice," he said smiling at me.
"Please leave," I muttered. His smile dissipated. "I knew that being with one girl was too hard for you so just go to Dell and leave me the hell alone."
"Briana, what are you talking about?"
"You know what I'm talking about! You asked her out Kaleb! Apparently I don't mean anything to you."
"Briana please," he said, raising his voice. "You mean too much to me. And she asked me out, thank you very much."
"So why did Liz say you asked her out?"
"'Cause Liz doesn't have her facts straight. She was just excited that I was going out with Dell in the first place." I clenched my jaw and finally stood out of the shower.
"Whatever." I turned my back to him and stood in front of the counter.
"That's it? You're just gonna give me the cold shoulder?"
"That's all you deserve," I said plugging my blowdryer into the socket on the counter. He placed his hand on my shoulder and then turned me around with force. I looked him in his eyes and I felt myself wanting to break down. I didn't realize how much I liked him until this very moment.
"I don't ever want to hurt you ok. She asked me out and what was I supposed to say? No, because I'm dating you?"
"You could have said something," I pleaded with him. "That you don't go out with friends of friends."
"Briana," he said smiling. "You and I both know that, that makes no sense."
"But still," I muttered. He smiled brighter at me and then pulled me into the circle of his arm. "I just don't want to get hurt."
His grip on me tightened. "You should realize that I'm more different than that. I don't have any intentions of hurting you now or ever." He pulled back and looked at me. "It's me and you."
I smiled at him. "Who knew that you could be so sappy."
"Don't ruin the moment."
"Sorry." He smiled and kissed me. I kissed him back and then sighed and pulled back.
"What's the matter?" He asked.
"Well doesn't this feel bad?" I asked. "I mean, kissing you now since you're about to go on a date with my friend."
"Now who's sappy?"
"I'm just being serious." I pushed him back. "Go before we do things we'll regret."
"Well, anything that I do with you I won't ever regret."
"I meant hurting Dell. Not me."
He sighed, loud and hard. "Fineeeee."
I laid in bed that night still thinking about tomorrow. Web-Lee's. I had a lot to do tomorrow & Liz was supposed to help me do all the things that I needed to finish. Ian laid beside me. He wasn't sleeping and neither was; too much on our minds.
He leaned over and threw his arm over my waist and I shivered at the touch. "Nervous?"
"You read my mind all the time," I said snuggling into his grasp. "You?"
"Not really," he said. "I'm not the one up for an award in front of maybe millions of people."
"Gee thanks." I said.
"Well, you know me. I love being optimistic." I snorted. He laughed and buried his face into my neck. I closed my eyes. Ian's touch was always soothing. "Just don't think too hard on it. Just let certain things go the way that they should."
"Don't you think that I was telling myself this the whole time."
"Yeah, but I'm pretty sure that you are thinking negative and not with an open mind," he said. "I know you Briana. I know how your mind works."
"Sometimes, I wish that you didn't know me some well."
"Vice versa honey," he said. He let go of me and rolled over. "Now go to sleep. It's late and you have to be out of this room by noon."
And we did leave at that time. Liz and I went straight to the big auditorium that all the web holders were supposed to meet us so that we could get coordinated.
"And the people in the active web show are supposed to sit over there," I heard someone say just as Liz and I approached. He stopped his whole conversation to look at me. "You're late."
"Name." I raised an eyebrow at how he cut me off. "C'mon honey, we don't have all day."
"Briana McArthur," I mumbled.
He turned and looked at the front row of the middle section. "You sit right on the third seat." He walked over to the seat and pointed at it. "Right beside Mr. Eric Lutaker who isn't here at the moment." I nodded and he went back to telling us what to do. "When they call your name, you exit your seat and you walk down the path that I am walking on, do you see?" He asked.
I rolled my eyes and crossed my arms. "This is the worst part." I looked to my left and saw Mary, Ty, Ricky, Susan and Lenay. They smiled at me.
"Hi!" I said smiling. They all gathered Liz and I into a hug. "It seems like it's been forever since I've seen you guys."
"Two days is a long time to see this beautiful face," Ricky said smiling at me. I rolled my eyes at his sarcasm.
"So what is this for?" Liz asked as she crossed her arms.
"The director guy just tells us our stage directions. Exit left stage, that's all you really need to know," Susan said. She shrugged. "I guess we've been here a million times, so we know where to go. He doesn't really need to show us."
"You should have skipped this part," Ricky said.
"Well, why didn't you?" I asked.
"We knew you'd be here," Mary said smiling. "We couldn't just leave you hanging."
"Is that why Eric and Louis didn't come?" I asked.
"I actually don't know why they didn't come," Ty said looking around. "They usually come to this since everyone knows and slightly despises who they are." He looked back at me and shrugged. "Who knows. They might need their beauty sleep."
"Gosh, they have no right to even be able to be in this category again," Lenay said crossing her arms. "They're just so ughh!" I tightened my lips since their observations about Eric and Louis weren't technically right.
"Have you guys ever talked to them?" Liz asked looking at them all. "I mean like really talked to them. Not just a few words here or there?"
"There's no need!" Mary said. "Everyone knows how cocky they are."
"Susan James! Lenay Wright!"
"That's our cue," Susan said. She turned and walked off in the direction their names were called in.
"We'll see you later tonight," Susan assured me. She gave my hand a quick squeeze and then walked off.
Liz looked over at Mary. "Do you mind showing me where the guests of you all sit."
"I will," Mary said.
"She doesn't know," Ricky said taking Liz's hand and guiding her. "Let me."
"Ricky!" Mary screamed running after them.
I smiled as they walked off. I looked over at Ty and he was staring at the floor. "So how did it all go with you and Mary? Have you talked to her." He looked up at me, smiled and then nodded. "Don't keep me in suspense!"
"You were right," he said crossing his arms. "I do love her, just not in the way that I thought that I did."
I smiled. "What did I tell you?"
"Alright everyone!" We all turned back and looked at the guy who was giving all the directions. "I want you to go back and get ready for the Web-Lee's. Remember, it starts at 7. You should all be here about 6 o'clock and your guests should be here at about 6:30. Everyone else should be flooding in about that time. If you're late, too bad, you don't get an award. Got it?" He looked around and then nodded. "Alright. You're dismissed."
Liz and I made a break for it. We had a lot to do in such a short amount of time. She went and woke the boys up. Ariel and Kurt had already woken up Ian and Alexander and they had already left to go do their business. Once the boys were up, Liz and I made our way do to the mall. We had to get our nails done, our toes done and we had to get some kind of curlers that Liz needed to do my hair with. That took about two hours of our day right there. As we got back to the hotel to get ready, the traffic was really bad so that was like another hour. So all in all, we got back to the hotel at 3 pm.
"This is just bad," I said unlocking our room door. "I won't make it. I won't make it."
"Just calm down," Liz said as she got a chair from one of the tables and sat it in front of the mirror in the bathroom. She had me sit in it as she plugged up the curlers that she had gotten at the mall and some bigger ones that she had brought. "Don't let this ruin your day."
"I'm trying not to, but we're off schedule like an hour because of that damn traffic." I sighed loud and hard.
"Well, we won't be off schedule any longer. Just remember that. We have the room to ourselves so that we can get dressed and stuff." I smiled. Liz always knew what to say to make me feel better. "Okay. I'm going to make a masterpiece out of you."
And she did that. When she was done with my hair, she turned me around so that I could see it and I gawked. She did the bow effect on my hair that I had always wanted to do on my hair. My hair looked like a big fat black bow. She curled the little bitty hair that wouldn't go inside of my bun and then she straightened my bangs.
"How did you?"
"No time to ask questions," she said. "That took me longer than I expected and you still have to shower and put your dress on."
I swear there was like some sort of flash forward button on us because all I knew was that at 5:30, I was putting the finishing touches of my makeup and I was going towards the closet where my dress was.
I opened the closet door and pulled out my magnificent dress. It was a white dress that was elegant at the top and a party at the bottom. It was tucked in a sweetheart neck at the top and it had like silver studs going around the waist and once it reached the mid-waist, it poofed out and made me look like a fairy princess. I smiled at the dress and began to pull it on.
The door opened as I got the dressed up and Ariel walked in. I turned and looked at her and she smiled at me. Her eyes filled with tears.
"Do I look that bad?" I asked frowning.
"No," she said smiling. "You look beautiful." My frown eased up into a smile. "This is why I wish that I had a daughter." I laughed at her. "C'mon, let me zip you up before you are late."
I hurried to her and let her zip up my dress. I walked to the bedside and put on my pink heels. As I was doing that, the door opened and then the room was full of everyone, even Dell.
"You look gorgeous!" She screamed when she saw me.
"You look amazing!" Alexander said playing with my hair.
"You look like my grown up sister," Eric said.
Even though they were all nice comments, I didn't think that I felt pretty until I noticed that Kaleb was just staring at me, motionless and with labored breathing. "You look phenomenal," he said to me. And I smiled because I knew I had to be.
"Alright," Kurt said. "Pictures and then she has to go before she's late."
I ended up leaving the room at 5:53. I took a picture with just about everyone in the room and then like thousands of group pictures. It was just madness.
When I walked into the corridor, the guy that was giving directions ordered me into my seat. I briskly walked over to my seat and sat down. Today had been an awkward day and all I could do was let out a deep breath. I made it and I was on time. My nerves had left me and they were replaced with accomplishment. Even if I didn't win tonight, I knew that I had accomplished much by just being here.
"And you just look amazing." I looked up to see where that voice was coming from and noticed that it was Eric who was standing with Louis.
"Eric's right," Louis said. I smiled, stood and hugged them both.
"Thanks," I said as we sat back in our seats. "I felt so, I don't know. I was all over the place. I wanted to be on time."
"Hey!" Louis said. "Don't apologize for being candid. This is the best part too. The awards."
"Let's just pray that everything goes as well as I would think."
"Don't think negative lovely," Eric said smiling. "Even if you don't win, you leave here feeling like a winner. Happened to Louis and me thousands of times, and we still felt on top of the world because not everyone can say that they've been up for an award." I smiled, only 'cause he was right.
The auditorium filled up the bottom seats and the top seats. It had to have been over 10,000 people in this building and noting the cameras, another million were just watching this online or whatever channel it was on.
I heard clapping start and that's when I looked on stage and noticed that the host was there and he was smiling. Oh yeah. The Web-Lee's had begun.
I had to admit that I had a lot of fun, no lie. We got to see so many different web shows such as comedy, love, and sort of adventurous ones. The speakers were hilarious, the people were hilarious and all in all I felt like I was a part of something big. We saw many great people perform songs; people that I've heard of and others that I needed to listen to more.
Each and every time I would feel out of place, Eric would place his hand over mine and reassure me that everything would be okay. I knew that he was right since he had been here many more times than I had. I squeezed his hand back and kept on smiling.
I felt the Web-Lee's soon come to and end and that's when my heart plummeted. I knew as soon as I saw Hemsworth Belligold and Alisson Gullison walk on stage, that it was the time for the personal category to become in effect.
"Well Alisson," Hemsworth started. "It's been a long night. We've seen so many great awards being given out and well..." He sighed. "I'm tired. Is it over yet?"
The crowd chuckled at him. Alisson rolled her eyes. "No silly! Haven't you heard of the most famous category. Everyone loves it?" He looked around, oblivious. "C'mon, I don't wanna get too personal about it." You could hear some people in the crowd start screaming, apparently the personal category was a big deal.
"Yeah. Haven't you heard?" She asked.
He shook his head. "Nooo. Could you inform me on that?"
"Sure." She turned back to the audience. "These are the nominees for the Personal category."
The crowd went wild as Mary, Ty and Ricky's face appeared on the screen and right under it, they had the title of their web show bolded it. Show offs. They played an excerpt from the scene also.
"It's hard being somebody that you aren't," Mary said to the camera. "But at the same time, if you are yourself, how do you know that people will love you for you?"
"Sometimes you want to be with the in-crowd even if you don't admit it to yourself," Ty said.
"We all wanna be a show off sometime," Ricky concluded.
The scene ended and then we saw Susan and Lenay's face appear and their title Aloners was bolded.
"Being alone can sometimes lead to depression or sadness if you don't use your alone time wisely," Susan said.
"Therefore sometimes you shouldn't be alone unless that's what you really want to do," Lenay said. "Be wise everyone."
The scene ended and as soon as the next scene came on, the cheers came loud and hard. It was of Eric and Louis. Their title Perfect Blows was bolded also.
"What I mean is that when girls want to be perfect, they get tans, they get their nails done and they're hair done," Eric said. "Sometimes I just want to go up to them and shake them and tell them that's not what perfect is!"
"No one can utterly be perfect," Louis said. "No matter how hard you try, you'll just end up looking stupid."
"Like Louis here sometimes," Eric said. Louis turned his face into a pucker face and the audience laughed. "See what I mean."
The clip faded and then my eyes bulged when the clip of my web show came on. It was like a miracle when I heard the crowd go wild and I wanted to cry. Being Beautiful was right underneath it. I smiled and blushed a lot when the clip played.
"The next one," Alexander said. "'Would you rather live without happiness or without love?' from Jannneett." He just shrugged. "Honestly, love has never come my way, so I just would rather live without it than with it. So I choose happiness."
"Strangely I agree," Ian said. "Love only comes with heartache y'know?"
"I disagree," Liz and I said practically at the same time. She looked at me. "You first," she challenged.
"I just don't understand. Love is one of those things that you can't help. You can't help who you fall in love with or what you do in love. I love to see people in love because love is amazing. I just... I don't. Love is one of those things that you can't see, but you can feel it and I wanna feel it. I wanna meet my soul partner and everyone else does also."
All eyes were on me. "Well," Liz said. "You blew my answer right out of the water."
I laughed along with everyone in the audience at what Liz said, and if I could have seen Liz too, I knew that she would have been laughing. The lights came back on, on the stage.
"Wow," Hemsworth said looking around as the applause died down. "WOW everybody." They laughed. "How many of you say that, that was the best category of the night?" The crowd erupted into cheering and whistling. "I say that it is too."
Alisson smiled as the cheering died down. "And the winner of the Personal Web-Lee award isssssss..." She tore open the folder and smiled.
My heart beat hard in my chance. If I won then a lot of things could happen to my web show. I could be promoted like Eric and Lutaker and I could be doing thousands of other things. Even if I lost, I couldn't help but be happy 'cause I'd made it this far. That was something to cheer over, right?
"Eric Lutaker and Louis Winslow for Perfect Blows!" Hemsworth and Alisson said at the same time.
Eric looked at me and squeezed my hand tighter as he and Louis made their way to the stage. I couldn't help but stand up and clap for them because I was really happy that they had won. I clapped along with the screaming crowd as they came on stage. Even after they were standing there, the crowd didn't stop cheering.
Louis smiled and maneuvered his arms up and down so that the crowd could shush and sit down. When they did, he began to speak. "Thank you all sooo much. It's been so much fun doing this web show for you all," he said. "We love you guys so much."
The crowd cheered as Louis handed the Mic to Eric. "Thank you all. As Louis said, it has been fun. I mean really. But first, I want to tell you guys a quick story. I met this amazing girl this week." The crowd began to laugh. "No seriously. Seriously. She was amazing. She was nice. She was all that a guy could ask for. Whoever has her is lucky and I'm glad I met her. So, Louis and I have talked this over. We actually want to give our award away to someone you all know." He looked around the crowd and smiled. "Can we have Briana McArthur please?"
My heart dropped. What did I just hear? The crowd applauded as the light stopped on me. I smiled and stood up. Everyone then recognized who I was and they started cheering even louder than they had been before. I walked the way that I was supposed to, to get to stage and I smiled when I got to them both. Louis just laughed at my exasperated face before he hugged me and Eric just hugged me and gave me his little award. He then pulled my arm to the podium and stood beside me as I spoke.
"Gee," I said smiling. "Hi everyone. I'm so awkward." The crowd laughed at me. "Um, I just wanted to say thank you to Eric and Louis. They're just amazing. Um, I always wanna say thanks to you all who voted for me. Um, yeah. I love you guys. You're like amazing." I felt the tears coming. "Omg, I am not crying. Okay." I wiped my eyes. "This is amazing." The crowd laughed at my awkwardness, but nonetheless clapped at me.
Not only did I leave the stage crying, but I left the stage a winner.
Suja V - I did notice! I was sad that I didn't see your comment anywhere. Omg. Hmm. You guys know that Ian and Briana's relationship is something weird. You can sense love, but a brotherly type love. I know it was a short chapter. I've just been sooo busy, that's why I made this chapter extremely long. I jumped from place to place here, and I'm running on no sleep so it must be weird. Lol. Everyone loves Ian. He's everyone's favorite character. Wowwow. Okay. Lucas will be in more. This story isn't over. Ok bye.
Maureen - Lol. You're in love with Eric Lutaker? Hmm. I don't know if I should do the webcam blogs. I don' t think that anyone would watch it and I don't know how to promote it. Aww. Did you like my Tumblr? I changed it again. I think I might be a smarty pants. Just not in Science or Math. Worst subjects ever. Kids are spoiled. It's stupid. I love where I moved to. I just started a new school and it's pretty cool. There's a lot of people and they shove you in the hall, but other than that, it's not that bad. You should write. I would read your stories day and night, seriously.
Rhyia - I trust you guys more. You're like my friends from the Internet Omg. Lol. We are best friends and believe it or not, my name is Briana. Awks, I know. Ian is my favorite character. He reminds me of myself. Literally. Life is different. I started school on the 27th and everything is different. I love it though. Hows your life?
Purple - You are in for a surprise! This is like the longest chapter I've ever written in my life.
TAYLORSWIFT - Lol. I think that Briana gets more jealous than anything!