Chapter 5

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My cheeks were flushed from the memory that had just infiltrated my mind. Once again I had left my conscious state and immersed myself in a memory of Camila and I that had changed our relationship.

“Lauren?” I heard and blinked and several times before snapping out of it.

“Wow, where did you just go?” Camila giggled and noticed that I was still somewhat absent from whatever conversation she and Dave were having right now.

“I…was just thinking about…some upcoming tour stuff”, I lied while taking a sip from my wine glass to calm down just a bit.

“That’s my job”, Dave exclaimed, “but tonight we’re both off and I want you to enjoy it. So, let’s go downstairs.”

Maybe it was rude of me that I had spent all of my time with Camila until now but I didn’t care what most of the people downstairs thought anyway. If I had choice, I would’ve kicked them all out and just sat with my former best friend and talk all night. Apparently that was not an option and I saw Camila follow Dave downstairs. I quickly finished my cigarette and took another big gulp of the red wine because I needed it to survive the shallow conversations awaiting me.

To my surprise, Camila was effortlessly talking to a group of people, having all of their attention. This wasn’t the shy and slightly anti-social teenager I had met at X Factor. The woman catching my eye now, while I was supposed to be having another conversation, had an irresistible aura about her. They seemed to cling to every word she was saying while her hands were gesturing to emphasize whatever story she was telling. Her head was still tilting backwards when she laughed really hard and I felt jealousy creeping up on me once again.

Since we had come down to join the other guests, I was making my rounds to appease everyone. At first I was worried about Camila but turned out she didn’t need my help making new friends at all. What happened to her in the last five years? I still had no idea how she had managed to transform into this seemingly perfect creature that made my heart race by just smiling at me across the room.

“Who’s that lady friend you’re crushing on?” I heard a female voice speak and instantly looked at Katherine, one of my background singers. My eyes widened and I felt busted but tried laughing it off.

“What? No…she’s my former band mate. Camila. I may have mentioned her”, I almost stuttered and saw Katherine’s sly grin.

“I was just kidding, Lauren. Relax”, she said but I just smiled hastily and fled the scene. Making more pointless conversation with a bunch of people I couldn’t care less about. When I finally reached the small group that Camila was a part of, I felt my pulse quicken and I was mad at myself for still getting nervous.

“What are you guys talking about?” I approached them and looked at the younger woman opposite of me.

“I was just telling them about some projects I have going on…charity related”, she explained shyly and I just then realized I had not even asked a single thing about her life. I was so preoccupied with the constant memory flood, that I had not taken an interest in the life she had obviously made for herself. Guilt washed over me heavily.

“You know I’d love to help out and give back in any way I can”, I replied to make her open up a little.

“No, that’s ok, I was just making conversation”, she said with a reassuring smile.

“Well then, please continue. I’m curious to hear what you do for a living. I feel like an idiot for not asking sooner”, I admitted sheepishly.

“I’m actually a music therapist”, she began and that sentence alone made my heart swell like crazy. How could she be any more perfect?! It was so like her to have chosen a profession where she was able to help other people but not give up on music completely. The fact that she had even chosen to pursue another career and not live off of the money we had made with the band showed her character. I had to focus on not drifting into daydreaming again but listen to her matured voice talk so passionately about her job.

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