Author's Note at 09-30-01: Ok, so this chapter is dedicated to Han and Stina, since the two of them are giving me such an amazing feedback since chapter one. I posted it a few days before, as friend's only, so Han and Stina could read it beforehand. Now it's out and in the open for everyone. Enjoy the 4th chapter!
Title: Soundtrack Of My Summer
Author: Lucilla/FeelTheSilence (ninthrevolver)
Pairing: Shane Gray & Mitchie Torres (Smitchie)
Rating: T (PG-13)
Status: On going
Summary: AU. He was Shane Gray. Famous rock star and worldwide sensation, he didn’t belong in the suburbs with the cozy people and apple pies. But he needed a reality check and a change of heart and that's what he got when he met a small town girl with big dreams.
Disclaimer: I don't own Camp Rock and I'm not making any profit out of this.
MEET YOUR LOCAL CELEBRITY
MEET YOUR LOCAL CELEBRITY
Mitchie felt like she was glued to the same spot after making eye contact with Shane Gray.
Well, it sure was a surprise when Danny greeted her saying that his cousin was there. But she couldn’t just freak out now, could she? The best she could do was try to not look that surprised by seeing a pop star right in the middle of Brown’s messy living room, sitting on the old leather couch and watching… Was that Hot Tunes? She averted her eyes from the TV screen and cleared her throat.
“Ahn, hi. I’m Mitchie. Mitchie Torres, nice to meet you.” She made a pause, expecting him to say anything. He didn’t. So instead she just started talking again, since she couldn’t stand uncomfortable silences. “Well, I wasn’t really expecting to see you here... Hum, nice thing I brought a lot of food, I guess.” The girl opted to shut her mouth then, she was starting to babble.
Shane unconsciously checked her out. It was definitely the same girl from that afternoon, but she was kind of poorly dressed now. She was wearing jeans shorts, a baggy T-shirt, some really old pair of blue Converses and her hair was wet, like she had just washed it and didn’t bother to dry it. Plus, she didn’t have any make up on. Guess she really wasn’t expecting to see him then. At least she wasn’t screaming, maybe she was just too surprised.
“Yeah, nice to meet you.” He answered in a monotone voice. “I’d tell you my name, but I guess you already know who I am.”
Mitchie frowned. What a cocky guy. But she guessed he kind of had a reason to be cocky, since he was right and she did know who he was. Still, he was making her feel a little uncomfortable and self-conscious with his probing gaze and she didn’t like that.
For her luck, Danny distracted her by pulling on her hand.
“Mitchie, I’m hungry.” The boy said with a slight pout. Shane thought the kid was being strangely whining considering how he acted so independent in that same afternoon. Maybe it was because the girl was around now and he wanted to look cute. What a brat.
Mitchie smiled a little bit. “Well, good thing I have food, right?” Then she turned to Shane. “I brought some burgers from my mom’s Dinner. Are you hungry too?”
Shane scoffed. So aside from being a waitress and a baby sitter, she was also the daughter of the Dinner’s owner? That girl was a small-town walking cliché. He didn’t tear his eyes off of the TV screen to answer her. “I don’t eat fat food, remember?”
Mitchie felt lost for a second before realization dawned upon her face. Of course… The voice, the arrogance, the stupid disguise, the way he talked about music as if he knew a lot about the subject. Shane Gray was the guy who showed up at the Dinner that afternoon, treated her badly and then rudely told her to ‘stop bothering him’ when she tried to give him his change. She shook her head, what a small world.
“Sorry, but fat food is all that I’ve got.” She answered, sounding not sorry at all.
Shane shrugged and then turned around just to give her a bored look. “Yeah, no kidding. No wonder you don’t look much skinny.” And then he focused his attention back on the TV.
Mitchie was positively bewildered. Did he just call her fat? Really? Shane Gray had the nerve to call a girl fat?
“Excuse me?” She asked, incredulous.
Shane sighed. Why couldn’t that girl just shut up already?
“What?” He sounded even more annoyed than Mitchie when he turned to face her again.
The brunette now had both of her hands on her hips and her eyes were narrowed. “You’re being a real jerk, did you know that?”
“Oh yeah?” Shane snapped and petulantly rose up from his seat. “And who are you to tell me that?”
“I’m a person!” She snapped back. She couldn’t believe the level of stupidity coming from that guy’s mouth. “And there’s a way of talking to a person and that’s not it! You’re giving your cousin a terrible example!”
Shane felt a little taken aback after Mitchie’s outburst. Was that girl telling him off? Him, Shane Gray? That… That wasn’t right. Stuff like that didn’t happen to him. Girls didn’t talk back at him like that, they were supposed to just… Ask him to marry them and stuff like that.
Shit, he was supposed to answer her. The girl was staring defiantly at him as if expecting him to say something and he opened his mouth… But nothing came out. Now Shane was immensely pissed off at himself. What was wrong with him? He was Shane freaking Gray! He wasn’t the type of guy that was left speechless by some girl. Especially not a small-town girl like that Mitchie Torres. Still, why couldn’t he think of anything to say to her?
Ok, he needed to say something. Anything. Because that Mitchie girl was starting to look at him as if he was a mental case.
“Fine. I… I’ll eat your burger if that makes you happy.” He cringed inside, hating how insecure he sounded.
Still, Mitchie didn’t seem even remotely pleased with his answer.
“I don’t want you to eat my burger. I want you to try to act a little bit nicer. Gosh! It’s not like you’d drop dead if just tried to be polite to someone, did you know that?” And then Mitchie bitted her tongue. Ok, where did that come from? She wasn’t normally like that. She wasn’t so… fierce. She was the quiet type of girl, the blending-in-the-background girl. But that Shane Gray was getting on her nerves and when things got on her nerves she… She just snapped. She couldn’t fathom why he was being so rude ever since he met her – first at the Dinner, and now here. What did she ever do to him?
Gosh, she’d better stop now, was Mitchie’s thought. She was starting to go too far. After all that was Brown’s house. It would be too impolite and ungrateful of her to offend Brown’s nephew at his own house.
Shane sighed, thinking how that girl was remembering him of his mother. No surprise that Brown wanted that Mitchie to babysit Danny. If she was giving Shane Gray, famous Connect Three member who was probably older than her, a piece of her mind, then the singer didn’t even want to imagine how ugly it would be if eight-year-old Danny dared to misbehave around her.
He realized that he wasn’t going to get anywhere by trying to make smart jerk remarks with her. The girl would probably just keep on talking back and burning him all night long. Shane didn’t know if he could take another moral-filled answer from her.
“Okay. Restart. I’m Shane Gray, nice to meet you.” He offered his hand for her to shake, as if they have just met.
Mitchie gazed at his extended hand with wide eyes. She didn’t saw that one coming. Did he actually pay attention to what she said? Seriously? Well, she wasn’t used to that, to have people listening to her, even less doing what she asked them to do.
It was Shane’s turn to feel self-conscious under her pondering gaze. The singer suspected that she was balancing her options – take his pathetic peace offer or just finish destroying his now fragile super star ego? Little did he know, Mitchie was just too busy feeling bewildered at the moment – and, this time, in a good kind of way.
She wasn’t a vengeful type of person so she sheepishly took his hand and shook it. Shane noticed with a bit of surprise that she had a weak handshake. He was kind of expecting her to crush his fingers or something after her personality display from earlier. But then again, she was a petit girl. A fragile looking girl… With a strong temper.
“Nice to meet you too, I’m Mitchie Torres.” And then she smiled. It was nothing like the ear-to-ear smile that she had given him earlier, at the Dinner, before she found out who he was, but at least was a start. She didn’t seem mad anymore, which was kind of a relief to Shane.
“And I’m Daniel Cesario and I’m hungry! Can we eat now that we are all friends?” Danny called their attention, tired of being neglected.
Mitchie giggled and let go of Shane’s hand. The singer couldn’t help the sudden feeling of loss when his hand was left alone. Mitchie’s hand was small, soft and kind of warm and nice to hold… But then he silently cursed at himself for having those weird thoughts.
“Sorry, I almost forgot. Let’s go eat.” She apologized to the kid with a sheepishly smile before turning around and heading to the kitchen with Danny following right beside her. But suddenly, after three steps or so, she stopped and turned around, looking at Shane with soft, inquisitive eyes. “Aren’t you coming?” Mitchie asked a little confused.
Shane blinked. Only then he realized that he was still standing at the same spot near the couch. He felt like kicking himself for acting so stupidly and so… un-Shane like.
“Yeah.” He nodded. Once. Twice. “Yeah, I’m coming.” But despite his answer it took his legs another whole second to actually move and follow them to the kitchen.
Shane’s reaction made Mitchie smile and Danny smirk, as if he was seeing something both teens were pathetically missing. The kid had a feeling that his dad would like to know all about that.
It ended up that Danny succeeded to sweet-talk his way into watching Avatar: The Last Airbender. Shane still wasn’t much happy with the idea of being forced to watch a stupid cartoon show, but stuck around the living room nevertheless. Partly because Mitchie made a somewhat disappointed face when he tried to excuse himself back to his bedroom after a quiet dinner. Or at least he thought that she seemed disappointed.
Well, he hoped that she felt disappointed. Not that it mattered to him anyway, but it would be good to know that she could at least act like a normal girl – like those who blushed and had crushes on him. Shane knew how to deal with those kinds of girls, but he didn’t know what to do with other, different girls. Girls who tell him off, like that Mitchie Torres.
The experience of watching Avatar led to Danny commenting that Shane was a lot like Prince Zuko and, in a first moment, the singer thought it was cool, being compared to a prince and all. But it lasted only until he found that that Zuko guy was a whining-emo-banished-prince with a huge and ugly scar on his face. And, on top of that, the so-called prince was in desperately need of a new haircut. Shane didn’t understand what the hell was the point that Danny was trying to prove – that Zuko character was nothing like him! That wasn’t him at all. But, for some inexplicable reason, Mitchie found the comparison extremely amusing. Well, he had already established the fact that Mitchie Torres wasn’t exactly ‘normal’.
The trio just spent the rest of the evening watching Nickelodeon cartoons. Shane discovered that he and Mitchie had at least one thing in common: they both hated Sponge Bob. That was kind of a relief for Shane, since Nate and Jason loved that creepy yellow thing and insisted on watching it while Connect Three was on tour. At least there was one positive point about that whole exile experience – he wouldn’t have to deal with Sponge Bob for another two months or so.
It was well past 10:00 PM when Danny finally started yawning and Mitchie decided it was bed time for him. She disappeared upstairs with the boy and left Shane in the living room with snacks and the TV all for himself. He took the opportunity to switch the channel back to Hot Tunes and caught the night musical news. And that was when he finally saw a glimpse of himself on the TV screen, alongside with the disturbing headline: ‘Is Gray Gone?’. He turned up the volume in order to better hear what the female reporter was saying about him.
“The word going up and down Hollywood is that Burning Up Records, the label who is behind teen sensation artists such as Connect Three, Tess Tyler and Margaret Dupree, is fed up with the eccentrics of their most prominent star, the vocalist Shane Gray. After Shane stormed off the set in the middle of filming the band’s lasted music video, a feat that cost the label thousands of dollars, the Connect Three summer tour was officially canceled and Shane Gray is nowhere to be seen ever since. According to the official pronouncement from the band’s management, the Connect Three members are currently taking some ‘time off’ with their families. But an insider from Burning Up Records told us today that Shane Gray was sent somewhere else than his family house in South Hamptons, in order to clean up his act. We are wondering if ‘time off’ and ‘clean up’ are synonyms for ‘rehab’...” The reporter smirked to the camera and Shane found it all so annoying that he grabbed the remote and turned off the stupid TV even before the new was finished.
Shane felt anger boiling up inside of him. Half of the stuff that reporter was saying was completely made up to begin with. Rehab? He didn’t need to go to a freaking rehab! He wasn’t even twenty-one yet, he didn’t drink! And he never got close to drugs! Did people think that those were the reasons behind his behavior? Well, if that was what they were saying about him in L.A. then he sure was happier staying in ignorance.
Mitchie found Shane with a distressed expression painted on his face when she came down the stairs after putting Danny to sleep. The singer was still sitting on the couch, staring blankly at the TV screen – which was off. He seemed so lost in thoughts that didn’t even notice the girl approaching him.
“Hey, are you okay?” Mitchie asked.
Shane blinked and tore his eyes off the TV to gaze at the girl. She had a puzzled expression that went well with her concerned tone. He smiled a half and bitter smile.
“No, I’m not okay”. Shane answered, truthfully, before sighing and resting his head on the top of the couch’s cushion.
The silence fell upon the two of them for a moment in which none knew exactly what to say. It was pretty obvious to Mitchie that something happened during the time she was upstairs and, whatever it was, it had made Shane upset. Seeing him down like that made her feel kind of sorry for him. She couldn’t help wanting to ask Shane what was wrong and maybe try to cheer him up – that was Mitchie’s nature, since she was a little kid she hated seeing other people sad or upset – but she feared that Shane would snap at her, saying it wasn’t her business – which, really, it wasn’t – and then go back to acting like a jerk. She didn’t want that, she was rather pleased with how peaceful the last hours had been after Shane decided to put a stop to his overly egoistical attitude.
Mitchie bitted her lip and then took a deep breath. She had to ask, that awful silence was starting to be too oppressive for her taste. Plus, Shane’s lost gaze was worrying her. She couldn’t just leave and let him alone, not when he was upset like that. Who knew what he could do?
“Shane… Is there-” she had to take another breath to gather the courage to continue “… is there anything I can do for you?”
He sighed again and closed his eyes by placing his left hand over them. “No, Mitchie. Not unless you want to murder some Hot Tunes reporters for me.” Then he let out a bitter chuckle that made Mitchie felt like her lungs were being squeezed a little. It hurt the tiniest bit inside her chest.
“Were they saying bad things about you again?” She hesitantly asked.
Shane huffed. “Yeah, try more like always. Except that this time they were a little bit more creative.” He paused his sarcastic remark for a second. “Maybe I should send them flowers for their originality?” Shane added as a sarcastic afterthought.
Mitchie sighed and went to the couch to sit beside him.
“Well, if it is just a gossip, then don’t worry. It will blow off eventually, like it always does.” She tried to sound reassuring and prayed for it to work.
Shane chuckled. He seemed a little less bitter now. “Yeah, I know.” He clarified and then took his hand off his eyes but remained staring at the ceiling. “It just annoys me how these tabloids think that they know everything about me. They just assume that I’m a certain type of person, print it out and spread the new as if it is some sort of universal truth.”
Mitchie bitted her lip, Shane seemed really, really upset. She could just wonder what kind of stuff they were saying to get to him like that. It must’ve been pretty harsh.
Well she had to admit that, at first, Shane actually lived up for the jerk image the press gave him. But know, taking a second look… Well, he wasn’t that much of a jerk. Actually, in that very moment, Shane Gray wasn’t acting like a jerk at all. He was acting more like… A human. Like the normal boy she always thought him to be and who had every right to feel upset when people were spreading lies about him on the TV.
“I guess that when you’re on the spotlight and there are so many people looking up at you, then it’s only natural that the public wants to know more and more about you and when those who are responsible for gathering that type of information doesn’t have enough material to work with then… Then they just come up with something to fill the blank and sell their magazines and make people watch their TV shows. But I’m not saying that they are right!” She quickly added when Shane gave her a dirt look. “I’m not defending the press or anything like that, they are wrong when they say stuff that isn’t true about you. I’m just trying to say that, well… You’re Shane Gray.” She chuckled, as if only his name could summarize everything she was explaining. And, in fact, it could. Or at least the comment was enough to make Shane smile a little. “It just sort of comes with the package. All the gossip, the lies, the paparazzi, the way you have almost no privacy. It’s just part of the life that you chose and there’s no use to fight it or to get upset over it.” She shrugged. “You have to just, you know… Ignore it. Because you’re bigger and better than that. And as long as you and the people you care about know that the bad stuff they say about you isn’t true, then it’s fine.”
Shane eyed her with an appreciating gaze and a half smile adorning his lips. That was a nice reassuring speech that she came up with. He briefly wondered if she had much experience in consoling people or was just really sympathetic. Maybe both. But how strange was that a girl like Mitchie Torres, who was just a high school student, waitress and babysit from a small town, had had more success in soothing him than a very experienced, very expensive, psychologist from L.A.? His label executives would be mortified if they discovered that, since they were the ones who paid for those useless therapy sessions. But maybe that was exactly the reason why Mitchie could calm him down when a lot of people before her couldn’t.
It was because she was this plain girl who wasn’t related to him at all and who would neither gain nor loose anything whether Shane chose to pay attention or to ignore what she was saying. She hasn’t been infected by the show business virus yet. She was still pure… And that was refreshing.
Unexpectedly, Shane found himself smiling a bit more. “You know, you say some pretty smart stuff for a…” He raised an eyebrow. “What are you? Fifteen? Sixteen?”
She nodded at the last one. “I’m sixteen.”
He nodded back at her. “Yeah, I figured. You’re the same age as Nate.” Shane frowned at the memory of his younger band member. “He says some pretty smart stuff too.”
Mitchie giggled, feeling her chest a lot lighter. Shane seemed fine, which was a good thing.
“Yeah, Caitlyn would be pleased to know that.” She answered, giving little thinking to what she was saying.
“Caitlyn?” Shane narrowed his eyes, trying to remember where he knew that name from. Suddenly the image of a teen girl with curly hair playing keyboard came to his mind. “Isn’t that the girl who was singing at the Dinner? Why would she like to know that about Nate?” He gazed at Mitchie with a puzzled expression and saw her bit her lip, as if she had said something she shouldn’t. Then he realized what she meant about Nate. “Oh, don’t tell me she has a crush on Nate Connor?”
Mitchie seemed mortified with his bluntness and that only made Shane laugh.
“Well, no. It’s not like a real crush.” Mitchie tried to fix it before it went too far. Caitlyn would kill her if she found out that Mitchie had babbled about her friend’s tween crush on Nate of Connect Three to Shane Gray of all people. “She just… She just thinks that Nate is cute, that’s all.”
Shane shook his head. That was so amusing.
“Well, and how about you?” He fixed his hazel eyes on her brown ones. “Do you think Nate is cute too? Or Jason?”
Mitchie gulped under his probing gaze and felt her face heat. Gosh, was that really happening? Was Shane Gray asking her if she thought that his band members were cute? The only thing worst than that would be if Shane asked her what she thought of him.
Oh, God, why on earth did he want to know that anyway? It’s not like de didn’t know that he and his band members were all good-looking. Well, Shane was certainly aware of his own hotness since he acted to cocky about it.
But Mitchie was saved from answering that incredibly embarrassing question when a sound of a car horn came from the outside.
“Oh, that must be my dad.” It was her answer to Shane’s unspoken question about the origin of the sound. “I called him from upstairs and asked him to come and pick me up since Danny’s already sleeping and everything.” She bitted her lip then. Shane noticed she seemed to do that when she was nervous or unsure about something or when she was mad at him. “I can go, right?”
He felt a little confused as to why she was asking for his permission, but he gave it anyway. “Yeah, absolutely. You can go.”
“Oh, ok.” She stood up from the couch and he followed her gesture. They stared at each other.
“So, uh, it was nice to meet you.” Mitchie offered as a beginning of a goodbye.
Shane nodded. “Yeah, it was nice meeting you too.”
They locked gazes again and after some moments of just staring at each others eyes Shane started to wonder if it was just his mind paying tricks on him or if Mitchie Torres was purposely postponing her leaving.
But then the horn sounded again and the moment was broken. Mitchie jumped on the same place, caught up on what she was supposed to do and headed for the exit.
“Yeah, ok. I guess I’ll see you around.” She said at least, while holding the front door open.
Shane just nodded and then she left. The singer caught a glimpse of her small figure disappearing into the night to climb on her dad’s car before she was gone.
He locked the front door and took a look at the now empty living room. Shane sighed. He was alone now. Just like he wanted at the beginning of the day… So, why was he feeling a hell lot far from being pleased?
Current Mood: sleepy
Current Music: Demi Lovato - La La Land