“Thanks. You don’t look too bad yourself,” she winks and orders a martini. “Do you want a beer?” She turns to look my way while the bartender waits.
“I’m going with whiskey tonight.” Reese raises her eyebrows, and I chuckle. “Need something stronger than beer if I’m going to be standing next to you in that dress all night, darlin’.” The bartender bites down her smile, watching our exchange before making our drinks.
“Dex,” she warns.
“Yeah, I know.” I raise my arms, palms facing her. “Just friends.”
“Yeah,” she sighs and grabs her martini. Once I have my drink, Reese links her arm with mine, and we make rounds. “Isn’t this amazing? One day you’ll have an event like this, I just know it.” Her encouragement is welcomed at a time like this when I feel like I may never get to this point in my career.
“Yeah, maybe.” I don’t miss the defeat in my voice.
“Hey,” she stops walking, pulling me to her by the arm she’s holding. “You’re really good. One of the best I’ve heard in a long time, and I don’t just say that because you’re one of my best friends. I mean it. I’ve been surrounded in this industry since my brother was playing in Riot, just like you. I know how hard it is, I’ve met musicians in the past. Your voice is unique.”
“Thanks, Reese.” I lift a shoulder, wanting to drop the subject in a public place.
“I mean it, Dex.” I nod in silence and look away, pretending to take in the atmosphere.
The live music starts, singers congratulating Rebel Desire as they perform a couple of songs. The fans go wild for all the talent spending their evening with us.
“Dance with me,” I grab Reese’s empty glass and place it on the bar. Everyone else around us is dancing to the music, so there’s no excuse that people will talk or get the wrong idea.
Just when I think she’s going to refuse, she puts her arm around me and begins to sway to the soft music. For a minute, all is right in the world. The worries of making it in this industry, the envy of not having the success others do, it all fades away the second Reese wraps her arms around me and moves to the beat.
I may have fucked around a lot in my life, but after meeting Reese and spending time with her, I’m sure I’d never want anyone else but her. If only I can make her see how good we’d be together.
I remember the first time I saw her, weeks before I actually met her. She was at Riot, laughing and drinking with friends. Her laugh reached me through the crowd, drawing my attention to her. Her confidence danced to the rhythm of the song I was performing. After that, she’d come in on her own some nights, and I’d watch her while I sang songs she could’ve inspired.
Women like Reese, hell, there are no other women like Reese. She’s in a league of her own—gorgeous, funny, and independent.