Love Struck (Miss Match #2)

By: Laurelin McGee



Don’t throw up, don’t throw up. Lacy darted into the bathroom and leaned over the sink. What the hell was she going to do now? There was no way she’d have an album ready to record in ten weeks. She was doubtful she’d have one ready in four months. Dammit, she should just own up and tell Darrin the truth—none of the songs he’d heard her playing the last few months were anywhere near complete. And definitely nowhere near recording ready. Hard to record with no lyrics.

But after his speech about being proud and all that, she couldn’t bear to see his disappointment. Couldn’t bear to admit to total fraudhood.

No, better not make any rash decisions. She’d talk to Folx about it first. Right now she had to get through her panic attack. Deep breaths and a splash of cold water usually helped. That, and unloading on her writing group. She dug out her phone and used the group’s app to send an urgent message to Folx. Need to talk. Message me when you can?

Lacy felt a little better already. Maybe even better enough to get through the rest of her shift.

Wait—Darrin said she could leave early. That helped her stomach subside. She’d wait for Folx’s reply in the comfort of her own home. She’d probably be dragged into helping her sister, Andy, with wedding plans. Which was fine. As challenging as it was to hear endless conversations about linens and venue options, living with a bride-to-be was fantastic for keeping her mind busy—even though it did make her think of the wedding she was supposed to have with Lance. At least it was great for keeping her troubles to herself. Engaged women, especially ones engaged to prominent billionaires, were too busy to pry. Andy’s preoccupation with her upcoming nuptials was the only reason she hadn’t noticed that her precious baby sister was keeping secrets.

One more deep breath. Lacy peered in the mirror. She was a little paler than normal, but otherwise looked fine. She fluffed her long blonde curls and practiced a fake smile. The trick was squinting. If you squinted just slightly when you smiled, people thought you meant it. The things learned while hiding from the world. One day she’d write a book. When she got her words back, that was.

Opening the bathroom door, she almost walked smack into Kat.

“Um, oh my God!” Kat pursed her lips at Lacy and stared meaningfully.

“‘Um, oh my God’ what?” Of course this chick was waiting outside the bathroom. Thank the lord she hadn’t actually thrown up.

“Darrin told me you’re taking Bitchy Ether’s recording time! I’m so stoked for you! I’m going to do your drums. It’s my gift to you. Of course, Darrin said he’d pay me my normal rate, but I’m really doing it for you. Oh honey, come here!” She threw her arms wide, inviting Lacy to walk into her embrace.

Lacy did, but took another deep breath first, not because of her nerves this time, but because of her nose. It was her experience that Kat usually smelled like more patchouli than she was comfortable with. Some of the scent always clung to her post-hug, which was tolerable, but it was best not to do an inhale during the actual act. Inhalation led to choking fits.

And this hug was going on too long. She needed to breathe again. “I was supposed to call you?” she asked as she pushed away, using the question as a reason to extricate herself.

“Yeah! There’s this band playing tonight that is like soooo good, I swear to God you will love them so much, so we have to go. Right?”

And that was another thing that sometimes bugged Lacy about Kat. She talked like a preteen. That was annoying as hell. Kat’s taste in music was impeccable, and the fact that she was able to keep tabs on all that went on in the Boston music scene was even more annoying. Yet another area where Kat had it going on, and Lacy no longer did.

Lacy was torn on the invitation. She really needed to talk to Folx, but if he wasn’t online, she’d just be sitting around home fretting and nodding at centerpiece options. Good music also might help resolve the tight knot in her belly. At the very least, it might be inspiring. And, man, did she need inspiration. “Fine. What’s the club?”

“Tigerstripes.”

Lacy sighed heavily. She’d have to change first, then. Tigerstripes was an über-trendy place, a total “see and be seen” for local musicians. Her yoga pants and tank top might be comfortable and fine for solo studio days, but she couldn’t wear them somewhere cool, somewhere people might know her. It was her least favorite part of being a musician—she really couldn’t go out in public without being “in character.” Her sister usually wore pantsuits to work and then got herself casual and comfy when they went out, but Lacy didn’t have that luxury.

When Lacy Dawson saw a band, she saw them as Up-and-Coming-Indie-Sensation Lacy Dawson. Which meant she needed to be in her uniform—full hair and makeup, plus trendy jeans and stylish shirt. In other words, clothes that didn’t double as pajamas.





Chapter Two

Twenty minutes later, Lacy was at home applying copious amounts of black eyeliner and fending off her sister.

“This wedding guest list is impossible!” Andy was yelling from her bedroom.

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