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Old 02-17-2006, 04:25 PM   #1
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Up Close & Personal - Chapter 9

Thanks for the feedback as usual, welcome back to the fic, it's not real, etc! Oh yeah, bit of language here. Just to warn, nothing major though!

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Chapter 9

Would you like to know about the time I went camping with my class at school? It was hilarious, we had tents and a stove and…

Of course you don’t! You want to know if it’s Larry on the phone, don’t you?

Well, it’s not. Yeah, because my life is that sweet. It’s actually my mother, of all people. I should pretend to be pleased to hear from her, but she’s tying up the phone lines!

“Rachel, is that you?”

I roll my eyes. “Who else would it be? Molly?”

“Don’t be cheeky,” she admonishes, even though I am twenty-two. “Is everything okay with the house?”

“Yes. It’s still standing, I’m still alive, now I have to go, Mum.”

“What do you mean? I’ve phoned for a chat.”

I roll my eyes again. I do that a lot where my mum’s concerned. I can’t tell her my real reason for wanting to get rid of her so I make one up. “I know, but I promised Adele I’d meet her in town and I’m already running late.”

“But it’s almost six.” My mother makes an impatient sort of noise.

“I’ll call you later, Mum, okay? I really have to go!” And I hang up. Oh God, I just hung up on my mum, she is really going to kill me when she gets home. What else could I have done? Larry might be trying to get through right now and if he can’t, maybe he won’t bother again!

I am turning into a real obsessive, aren’t I? This isn’t good.

I then go against myself by picking up the phone and ordering a pizza. I have to eat somehow and I haven’t done much in the way of shopping this week, it’s been terrible. The order only takes about two minutes though, and I figure it’s worth it so I don’t faint from hunger pangs or something.

When the pizza arrives, it’s brought to my door buy a very hot guy, blonde with blue eyes, who smiles at me in a way that makes me wonder if I should invite him in to share my pepperoni (only joking, I hate pepperoni). I take the box, give him the money and close the door, almost tripping over Molly when I turn to go back into the kitchen.

“Molly, for God’s sake,” I grumble and she stalks off. I put the radio on and sit down to eat, and am busy dancing like a loon to some 70s disco stuff while stuffing my face with cheese and tomato pizza when – you guessed it – the phone rings.

Argh.

I struggle to clear my throat and swallow the pizza as I turn off the radio and pick up the phone extension in the kitchen. It’s like a call of destiny and if I don’t be careful I am going to choke in the middle of it.

“Hello?” I realise, too late, that I am practically shouting into the receiver.

“Hi, is that Rachel?”

“Yes, that’s me,” I reply, all breathless and girly and kind of still mid-pizza.

“Hey, Rachel, this is Larry.”

Oh my fucking GOD.

I cough. I splutter. I have to step away from the mouthpiece as the pizza picks a fight with me and almost wins. It’s fortunate I manage to gasp a breath at last and by the time I put the phone back to my ear, I am thoroughly embarrassed.

“Um, hi, sorry,” I mumble, just so glad he can’t actually see me.

“Are you okay?” Bless him, he sounds worried. Larry sounds worried. About me.

ARGH! I pinch myself but it hurts. Don’t try it at home, folks.

“Yes, I’m fine,” I lie. Because while I am fine physically, emotionally I am turning into a wreck. I need to calm down, I want to, but it’s really difficult when I’ve never had a man sound worried about me before and when the man in question is Larry, well. You can imagine how it might feel. I’m within my rights as a hot-blooded female to get a bit overwhelmed in this situation, right?

“Okay,” Larry says, sounding as if he doesn’t quite believe me. That’s okay, I like a perceptive man.

I want to change the subject, so I do. “How was New York?” I jump up and sit on the counter top, imagining the look of horror that would cross my mum’s face if she could see me.

“It was great, thanks. Adam and I arrived a couple of hours ago. Just thought I’d give you a call since Edge gave me your number.”

He is so cute. He’s pretending not to be that bothered, that Edge just gave him the number and it reminded him, but he asked for the number! What if he was on that plane, counting the hours until he was able to phone me? Did he tell Adam about me? Did they have a funny boys’ discussion about it?

“So you got it okay? I went to the management place and he was there, so I handed it over.” See, I’m doing it too, acting vague. I know it’s part of a weird game that has to be played for people to retain their credibility even while falling apart inside because they fancy each other loads.

“Yeah. Edge picked us up at the airport, so I got it then.”

“Right.” Awkward sort of pause. Not for the first time, the thought of ‘do we have anything in common?’ flits through my mind, but I pay it no heed. There’s no point shooting this thing in the foot before we’ve even given ourselves a chance. “I met Bono again, too,” I add, just for something to say. And it’s somebody we both know, although obviously my association is hardly worth talking about.

“Ah, yeah, Edge mentioned,” Larry replies, sounding a bit more relaxed, if I’m reading his voice correctly. “Did he apologise? I know he made you uncomfortable in the coffee shop.”

“He did, but it wasn’t necessary.” Being nice about his friends is a good move, I imagine. And it hadn’t been necessary, anyway. “Think he was just making sure I was suitable for you.”

Larry laughs, then. It’s lovely to hear again. “You’d think I was incapable of deciding that for myself. He means well, I suppose.” The grudging praise is given with a barely-hidden affection that makes me smile. They love each other, those boys.

“Was he right, then?” A bold question, I know, but I’m in the safety of my own kitchen and for some reason that gives me courage. “Am I suitable for you?”

“Well, that depends.”

“On what?” Are we flirting? I’m half-trying, though that hardly means anything given my lack of skill in that department.

“On if you’ll come out with me. Properly. Not a stupid café but a real dinner.” It’s said pretty quickly, a sign he is nervous, and that gives me added confidence. That, and the odd flopping of my stomach. Larry is asking me out.

“Okay! When?” Forget casual and nonchalant – I want this man incredibly badly and he wants me too!

“Tomorrow night? I can pick you up at about seven.”

Lots of protests enter my mind, stuff about short notice and nothing to wear and playing hard to get, but I don’t give a damn about any of that. Nor do I care that Adele will probably never speak to me again as long as we both shall live and I won’t be invited to her wedding. Do you know why?

Because tomorrow night, I will be dressed up (oh yes!) in a restaurant with Larry Mullen Jr., perhaps the most gorgeous man I have ever seen in my life.

“That would be great,” I answer, unable to stop grinning. Well, would you be able to?


TBC!
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Old 02-17-2006, 10:01 PM   #2
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Yay! I'm excited to hear how this date is going to turn out...hooray for living vicariously, eh? Keep up the good work.
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Old 02-17-2006, 10:52 PM   #3
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Hoozah! Another great chapter!
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Old 02-18-2006, 11:02 AM   #4
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Wheee!!! This is a fun read, girl... and I'm a Bono woman, myself
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