Copyright© 2016 by Jay Cantrell
Romantic Sex Story: Chapter 26 - Travis Blakely had a comfortable existence. He had a decent job and good friends. He was comfortable with what the future held for him. Then he ran into a girl he remembered from high school. His life got a lot more interesting - and infinitely more complicated
“Are you sure about this?” Liz asked as the commuter plane prepared for landing at Los Angeles International Airport on Monday afternoon. “If we walk through the airport holding hands, your life is going to change. For the rest of your life, a lot of people will no longer refer to you except as it refers to me. You won’t be Travis Blakely. You’ll be Liz Larimer’s boy toy or love interest or ... whatever.”
It was the sixth or seventh time that this had been explained to me. I had convinced myself that I was ready and could handle the situation. Now that the moment had arrived, I wasn’t so sure. Our arrival at San Diego airport hadn’t gone unnoticed, of course, but we had arranged things so it appeared that I was part of the protection detail Ryan had brought along. He had thoughtfully dressed the two men that accompanied him to San Diego in clothing that was similar to what I wore – a dark blue shirt and tan linen pants.
I took a deep breath.
“If you’re not ready then you can just blend in with the security guys,” Liz told me.
I shook my head.
“That will just look disingenuous to people when we finally go public,” I said. “Right now, enough people know my name to find out what my job is. If that gets out, the label might take additional steps to hurt you.”
“I don’t give a shit about that,” Liz said. “I care about you. Remember the other day when I said I would protect you? This is what I meant. This is a big step for someone not used to it.”
“I’ll have you beside me,” I said. “I’m ready for this.”
Liz looked at me for a long moment before smiling.
“I’m ready for this, too,” she admitted. “It really meant a lot to me when your mom said she was happy for us both.”
“Yeah,” I said. I had worried about how my mother might react to the news that I had not taken her advice. I had not trodden carefully in any way, shape or form. I was committed ... and so were my friends.
Our first mission that Monday morning had been to arrive at the hospital as a quartet, march into Jennifer Clement’s office and deliver our letters of resignation to the stunned woman. Sarah’s friend, Rachel, had looked over the contracts on Friday and done some checking on the legality of some of the clauses on Saturday. She had let us know that the contract was valid ... and very, very generous. The starting salary for each of us was three times what we had made at St. Joseph’s. I had questioned that to my friends but Susan had assured me that the compensation was commensurate with the level of responsibility we had all agreed to assume.
I had not even reached the airport when Sarah had called to tell me that the hospital administrator herself had come off her lofty perch to contact Susan to see what we wanted in order to return.
I wish I had been there to hear Susan’s reply but Sarah’s recitation was good enough.
Susan had told the woman that “there wasn’t enough money in the world to convince us to put up with the idiots and sycophants that ran that hospital.” She made it a point to ensure that the administrator understood that she was included in the statement and then hung up.
We were alone on the plane so I leaned over and give Liz a quick kiss. She hooked me around the neck and made certain that I had a full understanding of her happiness by sticking her tongue down my throat.
“OK, we’re a private arrival so that means we’ll go through the VIP entrance,” Ryan explained as the plane doors opened. “Once we’re there, it’ll be a short walk until we hit the public areas. You can count on the fact that someone will get the word out that Liz is here. You can expect 50 people with cameras. Now, they’ll follow you and shout questions ... and a lot of the questions will be rather personal. Don’t lose your temper if they ask if Liz has implants. Let me deal with them. OK?”
I nodded and took a deep breath. Ryan patted me on the back as I offered my hand to Liz. She smiled and took it for a moment. Then she slipped her arm around my waist instead.
“Let’s make sure there is no misunderstanding our relationship,” she said as I slipped my arm around her shoulders. “Oh, and one more thing: Smile. At least pretend that you’re happy to be seen with me.”
I saw at least three celebrities that I recognized from TV or the movies in the VIP lounge when we walked through the door. One of them, an actress on a popular TV show, was on her phone. She stopped talking altogether and just stared at us as we walked by.
“Oh, my God!” she told her friend. “I just saw Liz Larimer!”
Liz looked over at me and winked right before we entered the walkway that led to where the vehicle was waiting. The initial flash of lights caught me off-guard despite all the warnings I got.
I blinked and the cameras fired again before I could see clearly. Just as my vision returned, a bright light from a video camera hit my face.
“Liz, is it true that you’re in negotiations to star in a movie?” a male voice asked. It took me a second to figure out that he was the one holding the camera. Liz didn’t get the chance to answer before 20 new questions burst forth.
I saw Ryan’s large frame step in front of me.
“Miss Larimer will answer questions when we get outside,” he said in a tone of voice that would have made a Marine Corps drill instructor proud.
Sadly, it didn’t lower the din or keep the lights from exploding all around us.
“Smile,” I heard Liz say. I glanced in her direction and realized that she had spoken to me without anyone in the room knowing it but me. I couldn’t help but smile and I even added a little chuckle. Liz glanced my way and her smile went from what I had termed as “forced” to the one I knew to be “genuine.”
We made our way to the waiting SUV and Ryan opened the back door. The two other security guys stationed themselves on either side of us, making no effort to conceal their part in this little side drama. They were the bullies on the block, there to make sure the newsies maintained some decorum.
Liz took her arm from my waist and turned around, capturing my arm to turn me with her. She slipped her hand into mine.
“Who’s your new guy, Liz?” a female shouted.
“This is my boyfriend, Travis,” Liz said. “He and I have known each other for years and we reconnected recently.”
That brought a series of questions my way but I couldn’t understand any of them.
“Hey,” I said loudly in the voice I used when Lucas and Brandon got a little too rambunctious. “Behave yourself! If you want to ask me questions one at a time, I’ll answer what I can. But I’m not going to shout over you.”
As I did at news conferences at the hospital, I pointed at a guy. The rest of the group seemed surprised to have someone insist upon control.
“Uh, Liz said you’ve known each other for years,” the guy said. “When did you meet?”
I looked at Liz for a moment.
“I would say I was four and she was five,” I answered.
“What was Liz like as a child?” a voice asked.
“Did you date in high school?” another wondered.
Since I hadn’t pointed to either of them first, I ignored them. Instead, I pointed to a woman with a cameraman beside her. Thankfully, she appeared to be an actual journalist.
“Liz, are you looking forward to playing Dodger Stadium?” she asked, which elicited a groan from several of the others.
“I am,” Liz declared. “San Diego was a great show in a great town. I understand Los Angeles has a rivalry with its neighbor to the south so I’m going to challenge my fans here to make Thursday’s show just as special. That’s all we have time for now. I hope you all have a great day.”
I let Liz climb into the SUV first ... using my body to make sure no one got a picture of her butt while she did. Ryan patted me on the shoulder when I climbed in and then got in after me. The driver pulled away at a rate of speed that would have gotten me arrested.
“Holy fuck, that was awesome,” the guy in the passenger seat turned around and said. “I wish I had a camera when you told them to ask their questions one at a time. I think one guy peed himself.”
“It’s usually a feeding frenzy,” Liz said. “They all shout and scream and you can only understand the ones closest to you.”
“Then you picked out some guy clear in the back,” Ryan said, shaking his head.
“Sorry,” I said. “He raised his hand to ask a question. It’s what I have people do at news conferences I assemble.”
“It was great,” Liz said. “It was obvious that you have experience in front of the media. That helps. You pitched your voice perfectly and your expression when you looked at me was just right. You weren’t checking with me to see if it was OK to answer. You were just including me in the question. You were considerate without being solicitous. That’s going to play well on TMZ. You did great, Travis.”
“The flashes still caught me by surprise,” I said.
“It’s no big deal,” Liz said. “It was only a second or two and you were back on your game.”
“It felt like an hour or two,” I admitted.
Liz squeezed my hand.
“We got two trailers, Boss,” the driver said.
Ryan turned around and I did, too – even though I was no one’s boss. Just as in San Diego, there were two motorcycles driving recklessly through the afternoon traffic.
“How far until we hit the others?” Ryan asked.
“Less than a mile,” the driver said. I made a mental note to learn all the names of the people that dedicated their lives to Liz Larimer. “I can see them up ahead and they’re slowing down.”
Ryan nudged me.
“You’ll like this,” he confided.
Less than a minute later, we were in the middle of five SUVs. I looked past Liz into the backseat of the one on our right. Through the glass, I saw a large man on the outside. On our left, I saw a tall woman in the seat where Liz sat.
“They all have the same license plate number, too,” Ryan said. “There is a security service out here that caters to celebrity clients.”
We were taking up three lanes of the highway but we were traveling with traffic so I guess no one minded but the motorcyclists behind us. Every few seconds the SUVs would change positions. One would move back and another would move to the left.
“It’s like a shell game with cars,” Ryan said, laughing. “If they manage to keep straight which one we’re in, we’ll ditch them downtown.”
One of the cars split off on an exit. Both motorcycles started off after it but one changed his mind. He raced along the shoulder until he was next to one of the SUVs. The driver swerved sharply and the motorcycle backed off.
“Jesus Christ,” I said, turning my head to make sure the paparazzi wasn’t doing 80 miles per hour on his ass.
“That was his warning,” Ryan said. “If he tries that shit again, the driver will plant him into the retaining wall.”
I looked at Liz but she seemed intent to ignore the entire thing.
“This is one of the times she just lets me do my job as I see fit,” Ryan said from my opposite side. “You’ll come to understand things better. These aren’t people. They’re vermin. If you think differently then Google ‘Jason Elliott accident.’ He crashed his car on the 405 last year while one of these bastards was chasing him and his girlfriend. The asshole with the camera didn’t call 9-1-1. He just kept taking pictures while the girlfriend bled out. She came within minutes of dying because the prick thought his bank account number was more important than a human life. Fuck them.”
We arrived at the hotel in one piece – and without causing anyone else injury. The second motorcycle had stayed until the third and fourth SUVs split off, banking that the one carrying the celebrity would keep a trail car in tow.
We slipped into the hotel through a private entrance that was well away from prying eyes and went straight to a top-floor suite that was larger than my home.
Liz sat down on the leather sofa and put her head into her hands.
“That’s always a bit harrowing,” she admitted.
I moved around behind the sofa and starting rubbing her shoulders and neck. Liz reached up to touch one of my hands as I used my thumbs on the knotted muscles in her neck. I was still working on her when the door to the suite opened and Ryan and Stephanie entered, followed by a hotel employee carrying the two bags that Liz and I had brought.
“She wasn’t kidding about making you her masseur,” Stephanie joked.
“It’s a thankless job,” I said.
“Pampering the princess always is,” Ryan said, smiling when Liz stuck her tongue out at him.
“You need to call Michael McHenry,” Stephanie said. “He’s been trying to get in touch with you for the last hour.”
“Fuck him,” Liz said. “He can wait until tomorrow. No, better yet, I’ll wait until about 10 o’clock out here and then call him at home. Prick.”
I looked up questioningly to Ryan.
“He’s an RFN VP,” the security chief explained.
“There have been a couple of complications you should know about,” Stephanie said. “RFN lists Jill as your contact person for the hotel reservations. She tried to cancel them when we got here. She was told that the label booked the entire top floor and some of the guests had already arrived.”