I closed my eyes, feeling the fabric in between my fingers. I take a deep breath and straighten my back, lifted my chin, rolled my shoulders back, finally smiled before letting my eyes open.
"Perfect," Cindy complemented. "Red Carpet Ready."
I faced my reflection that wasn't the small farm girl from Louisiana. I wore a long sparkly white dress with an open back. Maybe it was too much for a huge movie premiere but I have to say, I looked stunning. My hair was in casual curls to balance out, from the dress.
"Can I see here now?!" Libby asked from the other side of the door. We decided to change in separate rooms to surprise each other, but we've been anxious to see each other since Cindy's been running between the two rooms.
"Yes, come on in," Cindy sighed. Libby burst through the door in a sleek full length olive, sweetheart, strapless gown. Her brunette hair was in a casual braid down her left shoulder.
"YOU LOOK AMAZING!" She gasps, coming to me with her arms out.
"What about you?! You're stunning!" I'm stunned.
"Here," Cindy hand's us our clutches. "Now, go and shock your dates before you guys are late!"
We laugh and link arms before heading down the stairs where the boys were waiting in the foyer. Timothy and Henry wore suits with skinny ties. Charlie was sporting a bow tie for his suit while my boyfriend wore nice khaki pants with a blue button up and white suspenders.
Their jaws dropped.
"You l-look," Elliot cleared his throat, "You look beautiful." Wrapping an arm around my waist, I smiled at him.
"You don't look too shabby yourself," I tease.
"Bloody hell, Libbs." Henry looked floored.
"Too much?" She nervously glanced over her attire.
"Too much? You're perfect." Henry said in disbelief.
"Thanks, Henry," She blushed. Charlie and Timothy both commented on our dresses, telling us we were lovely. Daniel came in and decided we needed to leave, all piling into the limo. The ride there was filled with lighthearted conversation and when Elliot leaned in to kiss me I told him.
"No smearing the lipstick."
"You're going to kill me," he rolled his eyes.
"Get ready," Daniel warned when the car came to a stop. Elliot squeezed my hand as the door opened. We got out just in time for the flashing lights. Daniel directed us, letting us go in groups of two. First Elliot and I, then Henry and Libby, last was Timothy and Charlie. We would walk two feet before stopping to let them take pictures. Elliot always had his arm around me, never letting go. I would put on a million dollar smile as they'd shout.
"Elliot! Taylor! Over here!"
When I would have sudden doubts and nervous moments between the bright lights, I'd just move closer to Elliot for the reassurance that everything would be fine.
"A kiss for the camera?" One of the photographers asked. Everyone cheered for support.
"She's worried about smearing her lipstick," Elliot smiled making everyone laugh.
"Screw the lipstick, you look fantastic, Taylor," Another one said.
"Thank you," I blush from flattery.
"Kiss, Kiss, Kiss!" They chanted. Elliot shrugged, coiling both arms around me to pull me in for a kiss. I placed my hands on his cheeks to close the gap, making our audience of photographers and fans cheer as the cameras snapped. Pulling away, we both laughed at our childish act in front of the press.
"You two are great," the one who asked in the first place told us.
"Have a good night, lads," Elliot waved, pulling me into the theater. Before the movie began, Daniel pulled us aside telling how great we were.
"Glad to know I have your approval," Elliot said sarcastically.
"Just keep it up," Daniel patted his back before letting us return to our seats.
The movie was great, I heard the new song the boys wrote in the background of one of the scenes. Elliot kept his hand in mine the whole movie. At one point I glanced around the theater discretely. I was surrounded by famous musicians, actors, directors and producers. I would never had dreamed of this three months ago.
"What are you thinking?" Elliot whispered in my ear.
"Tonight has been incredible," I tell him in a hushed tone for only him to hear.
As soon as the credits were finished, Daniel rushed us onto the after party. Cindy packed two "after party" dresses for us to change into. Mine was a tight, white sparkly tank top styled, knee-length dress. Libby's was a tight electric blue body-con dress with no straps as well.
As mentioned before, I'd never been too social, so I never attended school dances, let alone a club. But, I was immediately drawn into the colored lights that searched the building and the thumping music. We were escorted to a VIP section.
Once the people began flooding towards us, my head began to spin. Elliot introduced me to probably 50 people. I got names and professions confused. I was eligible to drink alcohol so I stole a few glasses of Champagne every couple of minutes. Another thing I've never done: drink alcohol.
Elliot excused himself to get us some more drinks, obviously not aware of how much I'd had, so I leaned against the metal railing looking down at the people dancing below, enjoying the music.
"Looks like fun, huh?" A voice asks from my right. A tall, dark-haired, boy came to lean against the railing as well. He was highly attractive and had a thick British accent but looked as if he were from India.
"I've never been to one of these things, not even a dance. I wish I was down there, just to experience it," I tell him with a smile.
"Christopher Bose, actor," he held out his hand.
"Taylor Harris, normal girl," I shook it.
"Britain's American Sweetheart," he sighed looking around the huge room casually.
"That's me... I guess that's not so normal," I shrug.
"You know, you're much prettier in person." He commented making me blush. He looked over at me and noticed my red cheeks. "It's true. It's a shame you have a lad. Many men would give their left arm to have a gal like you: Beautiful, Sweet, Funny, Caring, Passionate-"
"And taken," Elliot finished for him, standing behind us.
"Ah, Elliot my good man. How are you?" Christopher grinned, turning to face Elliot.
"I'm fine, Christopher. Yourself?" I could tell Elliot was irritated. He handed me my drink.
"Swell. But just a bit of advice, lad."
"And what's that?"
"You might want to watch your girl. She's getting bored and might need to find someone more interesting to talk to, maybe even dance with," Christopher gave him a cocky smile. "It's been a pleasure, Miss Harris. If you're looking for a dance partner, come and find me."
He left with a wink.
"I can't stand him," Elliot growled.
"Why's that?" I asked innocently.
"Are you joking me?" He asked in disbelief.
"What? I thought he was nice," I held up my hands in my defense. Still understanding what was happening around me but a tad tipsy.
"Are you seriously defending him!" He pounded a fist against the table.
"Well, I did!"
"He was flirting with you, Taylor." He told me.
"Are you mad?" I asked.
"Bloody hell, Taylor! He was trying to get with you! Why do you have to be so damn stupid?!" He yelled over the music that only seemed to be getting louder. I set down my drink on the table, slowly backing away.
"I'm going to go." I told him.
"No," He sighed frustrated. "I didn't mean that, Taylor."
"Yes, you did, Elliot. To you, I'm a stupid, innocent, farm girl from Louisiana who doesn't understand a thing about this world." I said.
"Taylor," he tried to grab for me but I backed away. I ran my fingers through my curls, confused as I pushed through the large mobs of people, searching for Libby. When I found her, she was on Henry's lap, kissing like no tomorrow. I thought of pulling her off of him but decided my horrible night doesn't have to make hers horrible as well.
I couldn't find Timothy or Charlie either but ran into Christopher, literally.
"Well, hello again," he held my arms to keep me steady. He would do, I decided.
"I need something." I requested.
"I need you to get me out of here," I told him frantically, just wanting to get as far away from Elliot as possible.
"I can do that," he nodded in all seriousness.
After that, my memory was a blank sheet.
"Taylor?! Taylor?!" I called her name, searching for her all over the place. I even went down to the dance floor, looking for any signs of my girlfriend.
"Libby," I practically pull her off Henry's lap. "Where is Taylor?" I ask in a rush.
"I haven't seen her. What happened?" She looked concerned.
"We got in a fight and I said something stupid and she ran off. I can't find her." I tell. Libby stood up, pulling Henry with her.
"We will find her. Don't worry. Let's split up." She suggests. I begin asking around and even had Libby check the restrooms. It was when I asked a security guard that I got my answer.
"Have you seen Taylor Harris anywhere?" I ask a tall muscular man.
"I saw her leave with Christopher Bose about a half hour ago," he told me.
My stomach dropped.