Friday, September 18, 2009

GOING GREEN (the blog story)

To catch up on the ongoing blog story, GOING GREEN, click here!

“Do you want me to stop to get a corsage?” my father asked.

“Ew, no.”

“Suit yourself. I figured that way if anyone asks, you can pretend you have a date in the bathroom.”

I looked across the car at him and raised my eyebrow.

“Just thinking ahead, kid.”

When we pulled up to school, my stomach twisted in disgusted knots. What was I doing? Could I really walk into prom dateless, especially when everyone hated me? Like they needed more fuel.

“Don’t overthink it,” my father said softly as he parked. I stared into my lap, anxiety crawling up my skin. “And besides,” he added. “It’s high school. It traumatizes everyone. Right of passage.”

I laughed, shaking my head. “You really should have just let me stay home.”

My father’s face became serious. “You would have regretted missing your prom. And of course, you’ll need something to talk to a therapist about in the future.”

“Oh my God, old man. You are demented.” But I loved him. After all the crap I’d been through with my mom, Conner, the entire school…. It was nice to have someone in my corner. Even if it was my dad.

“Let’s go,” he said, interrupting the quiet. “I don’t want to miss the electric slide.”

“Dear Lord. Please don’t dance.”

He scoffed. “You don’t think I came here without practicing, do you? Give me more credit, Stella. I’ve got the Macarena down pat.”

“I’ll die.”

***

The prom was a mix of pastel fabrics, glittery balloons and a butt load of flowers. It looked exactly like how I imagined hell. This feeling was confirmed when I looked over to the dance floor. In the middle, like they were already crowned king and queen, was Conner and Trish. Slow dancing.

I darted my eyes away, hoping they didn’t see me. There was still time to go hide in the car. There was still time to stop this before I was completely humiliated. But instead I look over at them again. Trish’s too-tan back faced me as she rested her head on Conner’s shoulder. I hated that she could be so comfortable with him. I hated him.

Just then, Conner’s beautiful blue eyes looked up to catch mine. His lips parted, and then he smiled softly. And as much as I resented him for everything he’d done, I found myself smiling back. But I caught myself and spun around.

No. I wouldn't do this. I wouldn't… but I felt the tears well up in my eyes. Damnit. I wouldn’t become a prom cliché, crying in a perfect prom dress over a boy. No. I would cry in the bathroom like any self-respecting woman.

My heels clacked on the gym floor as I hurried toward the girl’s room. Once I pulled myself together I was going to go back out there and fake fun. Nothing said revenge like having a good time.

“Stella!”

I stopped, only a few feet from the safety of the toilets. I wasn’t sure I could turn around.

“Can I talk to you?” Conner asked.

I closed my eyes, the first tear running down my cheek. Fantastic. I sniffled and turned around, crossing my arms dramatically across my chest. I wasn’t expecting him to be directly in front of me. Looking gorgeous. I gasped.

Conner reached out and put his hands on either side of my face before using his thumb to wipe away my tear.

“You look beautiful tonight,” he whispered, looking me over.

My entire body shuttered with relief. Despair. “Yeah?” I asked. “You and Trish look really cozy out there. I think you two have King and Queen of doucheness locked up, don't you?”

But instead of answering, he leaned in and kissed me.
.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Rock Star Life: Starring Frank Portman

I had a blast last night because friend and fellow author Frank Portman was in town promoting his new book Andromeda Klein, his follow up to King Dork.

Frank also happens to be HILARIOUS! Oh, and did I mention he's a rock star?? Well, let's start from the beginning:
He had a pretty amazing turnout at Barnes and Noble:

And he played guitar AND read from his new book. Not an easy task. Favorite audience question? From here will your books keep getting harder to read? Frank: Yes.


Then we headed over to Plan B where Frank Portman transformed into Dr. Frank-Rockgod



Really, we were just getting started. Once again, he had a great turnout. I was amazed at the people that knew him, knew his songs; cuz, you know, Frank doesn't live here! So I was pretty impressed.

Friend and author Alexa Martin came by to hang out. You can catch her new book next year from Hyperion.
Yes, that's her grilled cheese sandwich. And yes, it is SLATHERED in ketchup. Ew!
Then it was time for Dr. Frank to rock out! And he did. It was awesome!
It's never easy to see friends go. :-( If you get a chance, catch Frank on tour. He's in Chicago right now, tearing up a B & N or bar near you!!
PS. I missed my LA girls-Heather and Mandy