Fiction Friendship Happy

The cup landed on the floor with a huge bang, as the cappuccino splashed onto the black and white tiled floors, scattering shards of the cup. My hands shook and my eyes widened with fright. Eyes around me grew to the size of saucers and mouths dropped open. A Cup of Joy was not used to clumsy waitresses, this was a posh cafe where everyone was meant to be perfect at everything.  

“Ro!” screeched Mrs Alejandro, her fist balled up. She grabbed me by the wrist and dragged me behind the counter. She let go of my wrist revealing a pink mark.

“Are you mad! You just wrecked our cafe’s reputation! Firstly you come late to your shifts and then mess up all the time! I’ve been dragging you along for too long.” I crossed my fingers, hoping she would not say what I thought she would say next.

“You’re FIRED!” she announced, banging her fist onto the countertop. 

“Please give me a chance!” I begged. I’d never been fired before my records were always pristine and clean. If I lost this job then I wouldn’t be able to pay for my school fees. 

“I’ve given you enough chances Roanne, I have had enough. Grab your bag and I want you out.”

I held on to my backpack as I made my way to the dorm room. I only had one more year here and the cafe paid me enough to live in the dorm and attend school. I needed to find a job soon or else I wouldn’t know how to pay these expenses. I knocked on the room door waiting for my roommate Kenna to open the door and allowed me inside.  

“Hey Ro, what’s up!” my heart raced as I summarised the story of my horrific day. 

“Seems like you’ve had a horrible day,” she said matter of factly.

“No kidding,” I replied.

“Well I’m sorry to burst your bubble but I’ve got more news,” I looked at her with the hope in my eyes. “I’m moving! You’ll be getting a new roomie but for now, you’ll be by yourself."

I looked at her in awe, great I’d be living by myself without a job. 

It was Monday morning when I went walking down at the park to let my thoughts run free. To show me that I would be okay. My cold hand brushed against the wet roses as once again I had forgotten my gloves, misunderstanding the weather outside. My legs began to drag as I realised I’d been walking for an hour and had walked myself to a Diner to satisfy my growling stomach.

The Diner was warm, with the smell of pizza wafting through every crevice of this retro-styled place. I took a seat beside the window, reading the menu while I wrapped a lock of my curly hair around my finger. The choices were difficult as I didn’t have a lot of money and I was ashamed to ask anyone else for money; especially my Mother who spent her savings getting me to university. I eventually ordered a slice of pizza and a soda. I picked at the cheese oozing from the sides of the pizza, I knew I was hungry but my appetite seemed to have died. 

“Oh my GOSH!” screeched a familiar voice. 

“Hanna!” I said, knocking my soda over and then quickly wiping the mess with the free paper towels.

“Oh wow Cousin, still such a clutz,” she teased. 

Hanna was an actor, back in high school she aced Drama classes and got the opportunity to be in school plays and acting gigs that were outside of school. After high school, she was taken to Hollywood to gain a big break in the industry. Currently, she was in a thriller show playing the protagonists' best friend which was just as important and famous. Seeing her at an old Diner made me curious enough to talk to my Hollywood cousin.

“Ha-ha,” I responded, not meaning the laugh as she sat in the seat in front of me. “What brings you to this neck of the woods?”

“This is my escape city,” my eyebrows furrowed. “What I meant to say is, paparazzi don’t come looking for me over here.”

She made eye contact with one of the tall, dark-haired workers and motioned something with her finger. I looked at her in awe. She was always stuck up but now she was rude too, is that what happened to famous people? She spoke about her new show and all her upcoming projects. How one of her fans started Twitter wars with her and all her odd controversies. 

“So what’s happening in your life?” she asked as the same waiter she had motioned came with an order of Nachos with a lot of cheese on top of it. Weird, she never ordered anything verbally.

I went over the details of my life at the moment; about losing my job and roommate- slash- only support system in this foreign city. I told her about how tight money was and my embarrassment to ask for money from anyone. For the first time since that day, I was talking about my feelings and thoughts to a person I didn’t even trust. She occasionally nodded and chewed for the most part. 

“I can help if you want.”

“Hanna, I’m not going to be an extra in any of your shows,” I warned, putting my hands up in protection.

“Well, that was the second option.”

“The second option? What’s the first?”

“Well there’s this project that’s close to being shelved because the debutant actress decided to quit the project,” my jaw dropped. “I mean David was shattered but he’s already signed a contract and everything. All he needs is a talented actress for the role of the protagonist.”

“Wait, you mean The David Hughes! Someone quit his project and you’re telling me this because?”

“Well I was getting to that,” Hanna snapped. “Back in school you used to be pretty good at acting, if I got first place then you always were a runner up. I just thought if you wanted to, you could always audition.”

I looked at her, my eyebrows lifted, my jaw still dropped and now in pain.

“Look he’s desperate and I might’ve promised him I’d find a stunning actress,” she said, passing her credit card to the same dark-haired waiter whose name was Derek. 

“Here’s my card Ro,” she slid a business card across the marble table. “Call me when you’ve made a decision. You’ve got about 1 week from now. Bye.” And with that she was out of the Diner, wearing a hoodie over her short, shiny, platinum blonde hair. 

It was Thursday and I was already running out of the remainder of the money I had left. With Kenna gone there was no one to share-buy the essential food and hygiene items anymore. The grocery list increased by the second as my bank account decreased in number. By Friday I was convinced that I was broke and needed a quick fix. As I walked from the grocery store, I put my hand into my jean pocket and pulled out the small rectangle business card Hanna had given me. I was now officially broke because of this new carton of milk.

I picked up my partly crushed phone and pressed the numbers from the card. “Hey Hanna, about the offer from Monday, is that still available?”

Two weeks went by after that phone call. I temporarily shifted from my dorm to Hanna’s penthouse in busy LA. With that, my expenses dropped. I eventually confessed to my Mother that my life had taken its first adrenaline roller coaster ride. Hanna had spoken to David Hughes to take my audition and made him promise on their friendship that I would get a chance and all the hard work paid off because finally, the day had arrived. 

Hanna knocked on the door and hugged the light-haired man who wore a black beret and a black and white striped shirt with black a jean jacket combo. David had made some of the best movies, possibly EVER and here I was in his presence. 

“Hello there, I’m David,” David introduced himself in a British accent while sliding his big, bear-like hands into mine and giving it a shake.

Don’t fangirl Roanne, I chanted to myself as Hanna had explained to me since before the audition. It was called ‘Audition Etiquette’ this was what Hanna had said ‘if the people in the audition room see you freak out they won’t want to work with you,’. I sat in David’s presence giving a minimal smile and nodding my head at most of the things he said. Eventually, I was taken to this recording room where they gave me a script to the movie titled, ‘Nanny Daycare’ a comedy revolving around a young Nanny and her kids. 

“You’ll get a phone call by the end of the week,” the assistant that was helping said at the end of the recording session, I nodded my head while crossing my fingers behind my back.

I spent most of the week out at events with Hanna to supposedly ‘grow my name’. It was an exhausting week, every minute of it was spent either at college (which my Mother was funding for me after lot’s of arguing between us) and being with Hanna on movie sets and parties. Amid the havoc, I spent bedtimes contemplating with myself whether or not to call the Hughes agency. In the end, I chose not to seem desperate. 

“RO!” Hanna called from the doorway at three in the morning, “You made it! David says you’re outstanding Ro. Just your signature in a couple of pages and you’ll be a star.”

I ran out of my room wearing Christmas PJs in January. I flung my disorientated self onto Hanna and we clung onto each other like two monkeys jumping up and down. 

The process took a couple of days but it was worth it. On the first day of the shoot, there were many retakes. The lights were overpowering it made me squint and the shot had to be retaken, over and over again until perfect. The children on set were fun to work with but it was also terrifying not knowing when baby Suzan would need to be taken for a nappy change and when Leo the toddler would sneak into the makeup room and smear makeup on the dress pieces. The school was slowly building up and controlling assessments for psychology and practising monologues had become close to impossible in the beginning.

Days started to go by as filming wrapped up. On the last day, I cried on David's shoulders; tears of happiness and tears of sadness. I was happy to have done something with people I would remember forever and sad that being with these amazing people was potentially over. 

When the movie finally came out, it was a hit with critics which was unexpected on my behalf as I was not a skilled actor. I wouldn’t call myself an overnight star because it took 45 days of filming and a whole lot more days to get rehearsals completed for dance numbers before I reached success. Everything had ended with me having an unexpected turn of not just my career but my whole life, I narrated this to Lola the interviewer from Ragz to Riches Magazine the number 1 Magazine in all of the US. It had been three years since the start of my new life. I completed my last year of university and moved out of Hannas's house and appreciated her much more than before. I started renting a small but cosy apartment for Mother and I. Life isn't perfect but then nothing can be perfect without a few failures along the way. It all started with a mistake and worked out from there.

December 18, 2020 11:57

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