Snap Shots Series: Picture Perfect

Twenty-Two


"Willa are you almost ready?" Lance yelled as he came to the bottom step of the front staircase. He was dressed for a nice sunny day. He'd been excited about seeing the sun after coming home to the rain the night before. He wanted the day to go well, not only for the Make a Wish thing, but he wanted things to be ok between him and Willa for once. He knew that if they could get along for the day that the Make a Wish girl would get her wish.

"I'm almost ready!" she yelled to him. He heard her voice coming from the direction of the downstairs guest bathroom so he went to go see how ready "almost ready" was. He hadn't dated in a while and couldn't remember if "almost ready" meant really ready or was just a phrase to stall him.

He found her in front of the mirror in the bathroom putting on mascara and eyeliner. She wore jeans and a long sleeved T-shirt that looked dressy, but not formal. It was a good look for her and she actually seemed relaxed, a little quiet like the night before, but she had a smile on her face this morning instead of a frown.

"Don't stare," she said, "I'm nervous enough about this as it is."

"Why are you nervous?" he asked. "It's just a little girl and her sister."

"Yeah and a camera crew and a few photographers and the news people and everyone," she rambled out.

"Whatever. Just smile and be nice," he said.

"Easy for you to say. The only fan of mine I've ever actually met was that girl Veronica at the Ritz."

"Well it's not like you're going to be alone today. How do you think I feel? I usually have the other guys to be with."

"And what am I? Chopped liver?"

"No," he said.

"Please don't stare."

Lance leaned against the door. "It's not every day that a guy gets to see a supermodel put on her make up in their guest bathroom."

"And what a bathroom this is," she said looking around. "I take it you like Dr Sues?"

"Yeah," he said looking at the huge Grinch logo on the wall behind her. "We did a sound for the new soundtrack."

"Very interesting."

"Not as interesting as watching you put on make up," he said then leaned and looked at her closely. "Why are you pulling your eyes like that?"

"This is how you put on mascara and liner," she said and stopped to look at him. "Want some?"

"No, it's not my color," he said with a smile.

Willa laughed at his comment then went back to her make-up. "I'm sure that this is all entertaining," she said rolling her eyes. She was sarcastic about it, but it wasn't a mean sarcasm. It was a funny sarcasm for once.

"You'd be surprised," Lance said and looked at his watch.

"Ok, I know I'm setting myself up for an insult, but does it look ok?" she asked, "Not that you'd really…"

"It looks good, except…" He scooted closer to her and touched her cheek. "You have an eyelash."

She held her breath as he stood closely to her. When he looked up from her cheek he found her watching him with wide eyes.

"Was that a compliment from you Lance?" she asked, "That sleep last night must have been really needed. You sound like a different person."

"Don't look too surprised," Lance laughed. "Whatever. I'm just trying to act nice and sweet so I don't ruin that little girl's day."

"So this is all an act?" she asked.

"I have to keep up my asshole status with you," he said with a wink in her direction and left the bathroom to go to the kitchen. "You want anything to eat before we go?"

"No," she said, "I made myself some toast this morning."

"You did?" he called back looking around the kitchen. It didn't look like anything had been touched, until he saw the plate and knife in the dish rack. He didn't even know that he had a dish rack. It must have been something that his mother must have gotten him while he was on the road.

"Yeah," she said. She came out from the hallway wearing her bag over her shoulder. "You ready?"

"Hold up a second," he said. He went and grabbed an apple out of the refrigerator. "Let's hit it."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Willa followed Lance out to the garage. They entered from the door that led into the house. There were a small sports car and an SUV and watched in amazement as he opened the passenger door of the SUV for her. "Hop in,"

"You're driving us there?" she asked.

"Yeah. We have to pick up Wes and Loni then we're going to go and meet with everyone. I think we're going to have the girls come with us in the car when we drive over to the park," he said. "Why? You don't think I can drive?"

Willa sighed and got in the car. He took her backpack. "I just didn't expect it."

"That's what I like to hear. I love keeping women on their toes," he said.

He closed the door and she watched him walk around to the other side of the car. He stopped on the far side to throw their backpacks into the back seat then Lance jumped in the driver side and turned on the ignition. Country music filled the car. He turned it down then buckled his seatbelt and hit the button of the garage door opener. A moment later they backed out of the garage and drove around the small u-shaped driveway that led to the street.

A laugh filled the car when they got outside the security gate.

"What's that for?"

"This is the first time in a long time that people haven't been waiting for me on the street. This was an unscheduled trip so no one knows I'm home."

"That's kinda why I'm glad I'm not a pop star," she said, "I can always go home without worrying about having people there waiting for me."

"Must be nice," he said.

"You really hate that?" she asked.

"Nah, it gets annoying for my parents. They have people in Mississippi that pick the grass on the front lawn. Also my sister and brother-in-law get harassed a little."

"Harassed?"

"When they go shopping or something they get followed."

"Sounds like me. I've had some reporters following me."

Lance pulled the car over, parking in front of someone's house. "You've been followed?"

"Yeah, I think its some tabloid reporter or something."

"Really?

"Yeah, it's nothing. He usually takes pictures of me when I'm going to and from the agency. He's never said anything to me."

"Are you serious?"

"It's not that bad."

"Yes it is."

Lance reached his arm around and pulled out his phone.

Willa watched him as he dialed a number then held the phone to his ear then pulled the car back onto the road.

"Wes," Lance said, "Yeah, we're on our way. I have to ask you a favor man."

Willa looked out the window. She didn't know what he was doing so she didn't want to listen to something that didn't concern her.

"Is Spanky still in the business?" Lance asked.

Willa laughed at the name.

"Yeah, I need to see if I can get him to work for me. Think he'll do it?" Lance said, "No, no, it's not for the group. I think that Willa needs someone around…no, nothing happened, but some reporters have been trying to take her picture. Just in case."

"I don't need a bodyguard!"

"Hold on," Lance said into the phone. He covered the receiver and looked at her. "Willa, it's not like he's going to baby-sit you. I just want him to be on call incase you need someone to…" He sighed. "Just let me do this ok? I got you into this mess and I don't want that to totally screw with your life."

Willa watched the look in his eyes. He was worried about her. It shocked her, but at the same time it was comforting to know that he cared about her. Maybe Wes was right. Maybe he did like her.

Lance turned and spoke into the phone again. "Yeah, I want him to meet Willa at the airport tomorrow when she gets back to Kennedy."

When he hung up a moment later he looked at Willa. "It's not that I expect that something to happen to you, but it'll be easier for me to sleep at night knowing that someone out there isn't stalking you."

Willa stared at him. "You stay up at night worrying about me?"

Lance glanced at her. "I…I…I know that the announcement caused you some trouble and I'm…" He took a breath. "Never mind."

"Jesus Lance, you were almost there…"

"What are you talking about?" he said.

Willa folded her arms across her chest. "Oh never mind. You'd never understand."

"Does this have anything to do with what Wes said with you yesterday?" Lance asked.

Willa looked out the window. "No...Never mind about it."


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