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Old 02-08-2006, 04:30 PM   #1
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Up Close & Personal - Chapter 4

I am so grateful for all the lovely feedback on this fic so far! I'm going to keep posting as long as I can keep writing, I hope it goes well for a while yet. I also have another fic planned but we'll wait till I get this done maybe, lol!

As usual, disclaimer applies, this ain't true, dudes. Bit of bad language in this as well.


**************************

Chapter 4

Okay, okay. You’re right. I overreacted. Back in the café, I ran away for no apparent reason and blew my chances with Larry Mullen Jr. But I was so uncertain about the ‘date’ once Bono arrived and started assessing how pretty I was. All I’d wanted was to maybe meet a nice guy, have a chat, if it didn’t work out I’d get over it. I hadn’t been after some inter-band squabble or game which my presence was expected to sort out. Larry said he wasn’t even staying in the country long, what kind of relationship was that supposed to be? Clearly he’d been forced into going along with the advert by Bono and probably the others and he hadn’t even wanted to be there with me.

Which I guess is fair enough.

Overreaction? Maybe. But I don’t need to get in over my head with a bunch of rock stars. I’d rather keep my image of them in my head if it means I don’t get hurt by falling for someone who isn’t interested.

So why, when I’ve made the right decision, do I feel like something inside me is missing?

Sighing, I stop staring at the pavement and look up just in time to realise I’ve somehow wandered down the wrong street. Argh! This is really turning out not to be my day. It’s a bit dark and damp down here, puddles in the gutter from where the rain fell earlier. It’s stopped for now, but the massive black cloud looming in the sky doesn’t bode well for that state of affairs lasting much longer.

I turn, trying to figure out which way to go for my bus stop, when I come face to face with a lanky, unattractive man with straggly hair and a sneering mouth.

Taken aback, I gasp and stumble back a little as he advances on me.

“You,” he snarls, showing a gold tooth amongst his normal ones. Yes, I know it sounds like a cliché, but I can’t help it! That’s what he looks like! “You, gimme yer bag. And yer money.”

I’d like to think I’m a strong, independent sort of girl, one who’d fight back and protest when she got mugged. But when it actually happens, I realise nothing is worth risking whatever this guy might have on him – a knife, a gun, anything’s possible – so with a heavy heart I hand over my purse and, on his next demand, my silver watch, something I’m very fond of as it was an 21st birthday present from my parents.

“What’s in that?” he grunts, cocking his head at my carrier bag of records.

No! He wants to take my U2 records! God, this just gets worse and worse. I mean, I may have just had a strange encounter with half the band but I still want my lovely vintage vinyl.

”Oh, um, just singles, nothing valuable,” I begin, but he rips the bag out of my hand, takes one look inside and smirks.

“That’ll do nicely. The bloody rich bastards can do me a favour, for once. Now, anything else you want to give me?” He grasps my wrist and forces me back against the wall. I don’t scream, I can’t seem to find it within me as all the breath has left my body in utter shock. I’m not sure what he’s after but it can’t be good, I wish someone would hurry up and come past…

“You’re pretty, aren’t ya?” he says, pushing up against me. It’s disgusting, he stinks of booze and fags and God knows what else. I start to struggle but he grips me tighter, his horrible face nearing mine, threatening.

“I, I’m gonna scream,” I say, my voice too quiet and shaky to sound convincing.

“Go ahead,” he sneers, “no one will hear ya.”

“Is that right?”

My attacker turns his head the same time I do, and it seems we’re both stunned by what we see. At the end of the street, the sun shining around him like a halo (well, okay, not really, but hey I’m probably hallucinating), is Larry. His hair is wet, his mouth is twisted in anger, and he looks absolutely gorgeous.

As he walks towards me, I can’t help smiling in sheer relief. Larry doesn’t see; he’s too busy glaring at my attacker, who has let go of my wrist and is now attempting to square up to Larry only to realise Larry’s biceps are far bigger.

“I suggest you fuck off, before I do something I might regret,” Larry growls. I know it’s a serious situation, but can you blame me for feeling a thrill down my spine at the way he’s come to my aid? My mind momentarily wanders to scenarios involving me, Larry and a large comfortable bed.

“Yeah?” The skinny guy is doing his best to look hard, bless him, but I can see in his eyes he’s wavering. Larry does appear as if he’s capable of murder, right this instant. It’s so sexy.

“Yeah. Give me this young lady’s possessions.”

“Or what?” The bravado is battling on, only to wilt in the hear of Larry’s ire.

“Or I’ll fucking knock you into next fucking week. Do it!” Larry holds out his hand and the guy, with a snort, hands over my purse and the bag of records, and then makes a run for it just after I realise he’s kept my watch. It doesn’t matter. I have my money and my credit cards and most importantly, I have Larry here with me.

“Here you go,” he says shortly, giving me my things. It takes me a second to understand he’s still furious with the guy and not angry at me. A few beats later, he lets out a long breath and turns to me, his expression more relaxed, his eyes softer though no less intense. “Are you okay?”

I nod, still shaking. Probably partly because Larry is so near. “Thank you.”

“Not a problem. C’mon, this isn’t the nicest place to hang around.” He places a hand on my back (I could get used to that) and guides me out of the side street into the open, bustling thoroughfare. Vague sunlight squints down at us and I’m aware of just how lucky I’ve been to escape without a scratch.

“I could do with a drink,” Larry says, glancing at me. I blush, which is hardly playing it cool. “Fancy one?”

“Definitely.” I smile despite my embarrassment and general state of shock, and Larry returns it, another of those tiny smiles that illuminate his entire face. It’s more than good enough for me.

We head off down the street, presumably to a pub or café. “Honestly, I mean it,” I continue, needing to express my gratitude, even though there’s no way I can. “Thank you so much for, for being there. I was so scared.”

Larry makes a noise under his breath, which may or may not be a swear word. I hope it is. “There’s no need to thank me, Rachel. I’m glad I could help. Fuckers like that need a proper good kicking but unfortunately I can’t risk giving them one.”

“It’s fine, I got most of my stuff back, that’s great,” I reply, and Larry frowns as me.

“Most?”

Damn. Way to make him feel bad, Rachel. “Um, no, nothing,” I stammer, “it’s just he must have put my watch in his pocket when we weren’t looking. I didn’t even notice till he’d gone.” I try to forget how much the watch means to me and instead look cheerful. “But it doesn’t matter, because he gave me back all the records by my favourite band. Some guys called U2?” I risk a grin Larry’s way, and to my delight he laughs back. An actual, genuine laugh that I think just warmed my soul.

“U2? What d’you want that shite for?” he smiles, and then he’s holding a door open for me and I step inside a lovely cosy pub, feeling my stomach flip as I realise I’m going for a proper drink with Larry Mullen Jr.

And not a Bono in sight!

TBC!
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Old 02-08-2006, 04:39 PM   #2
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Old 02-08-2006, 08:01 PM   #3
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larry the hero
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Old 02-08-2006, 11:38 PM   #4
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Larry to the rescue!
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Old 02-09-2006, 01:58 AM   #5
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Old 02-09-2006, 10:20 AM   #6
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Old 02-09-2006, 01:14 PM   #7
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Larry the superherooo!!!!
love the writing....
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Old 02-09-2006, 10:51 PM   #8
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I'm loving this!
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