Acting Up by Starlight_Slayer
Chapter 1 by Starlight_Slayer
This story is not going to be too long, probably no more than ten chapters.
I'm going to try and update this regularly (along with my other WIPs). I hope everyone enjoys it.
A plethora of flashlights blinded the young blonde the minute she stepped out of the hotel’s revolving doors. Hoards of reporters fired question after question at her, even as she covered her sunglasses-clad face with her tiny hand.
An older gentleman pushed through the crowd in front of her, shielding her from the worst of the hounding, but inside she felt like with every inane question, another part of her shriveled and died. Clinging to his arm she tottered as fast as she could on four inch stiletto heels.
“No comment!” The older, gray-haired man declared to the reporters stiffly in his upper class British accent, even as the bulky microphones continued to be shoved in their faces. “Miss Summers has nothing to say.”
Finally they made it through the throng to the large stretch limousine that was waiting for them, and he ushered her inside before slipping in himself.
Outside they could still see the constant pop of flashbulbs but at least the car provided a barrier to the barrage that they had faced moments earlier
The tranquility of the limo was like an oasis for Buffy and she pulled off her sunglasses with a groan and rested her head against the back of the seat.
“Are you quite alright, Buffy?” Rupert Giles asked her with concern. His young charge was looking decidedly thin and pale, the events of recent days taking a toll on her.
She nodded unsurely.
“I guess I’m okay.” At his worried look, she rolled her eyes. “I’ll be fine, as soon as all the press attention dies down.”
The look he gave her at that statement proved that he knew just as well as her that would never happen.
At least not completely.
Since she was seven years old Buffy had been in the spotlight. Her mother had taken her to the casting of a new movie on a whim, and Buffy beat out all the other kids to take the starring role.
Now, sixteen years, twelve movies and four hit television shows later, her every move was documented by paparazzi. Every single failed romance had made the front pages of the gossip rags and she could barely even go to the grocery store without someone trying to snap a picture of her or begging her for an autograph. Even the absolute worst of her bad hair days seemed to be fodder for the public to chew over.
All her life she had longed to be a normal girl.
But short of a miracle, that wasn’t possible.
As the limo moved off, she vaguely registered Giles, the man who had been her manager since she was nine years old, reciting her itinerary for the day to her.
But she couldn’t concentrate on what he was saying, because the young girl was still reeling from the betrayal of her latest boyfriend that had caused a renewed upsurge in the reporters who were after her blood.
Buffy hadn’t exactly loved Riley Finn, television star and asshole extraordinaire, but it didn’t stop the front cover pictures of him in the arms of some two-bit whore that had been published only days earlier any less gut-wrenchingly painful.
Even then, the young blonde had been willing to hear him out and even forgive him. However, his excuses had been the final nail in the coffin.
Riley had proclaimed that he was driven to infidelity by her lack of attention to him.
He told her that a woman should always put her man first and Buffy clearly wasn’t capable of accomplishing that, because as America’s beloved sweetheart she was virtually public property.
It was just another reminder that she could never be the normal girl she so badly longed to be.
Of course, no one could blame her when she made her fist collide with his pointy little nose.
She smiled to herself as she remembered the crunch as her balled up fist smashed into the bone and the gush of blood that followed his wailing cry.
“Buffy are you listening to me?” Giles asked sternly, breaking into her reflective musings.
“Huh?” She said, startled.
“Why, yes, clearly you’re hanging off my every word.” He drawled dryly. “Listen, Buffy, if you’re not up to doing this job…”
“I’m up to it!” She exclaimed. “I’m very, very up. I’m upper than up. I’m actually the up-est.”
Giles threw her a bemused look and sighed wearily.
“Okay, if you say so. Well, at least the job only entails one week of filming and then you can take that holiday I suggested.”
“I don’t need any vacation time, Giles.” Buffy assured her manager. “I need to keep working and keep my mind off of…things.”
“But you’ve been exceedingly upset following recent events…”
“And again, I repeat. Keep working. Mind off. Best way.”
Giles threw his arms in the air resignedly.
“Fine. We shall do this your way, for now.” Giles conceded.
“Oh thank you, lord and master.” Buffy mocked with a playful edge in her voice.
When the limo pulled up outside the studio, the pair stepped out and were greeted by a long haired man in a cowboy hat sporting a beaming smile and a skinny brunette female in a flawless designer suit who was regarding Buffy with a pinched face.
Buffy suddenly felt a little insecure about her Prada ensemble, and smoothed down her front of her skirt.
“Well hello Miss Summers and welcome.” The jean clad man gushed in a strong Texan accent. “We’re so pleased to have you here!”
He held out a meaty hand and took her delicate paw in his own, placing a gentle kiss on her fingertips.
“I’m Lindsey McDonald. I’ve been directing ‘Murder So Strange’ for the past three seasons.” He said. “And this here lady is Lilah Morgan. She’s our producer.”
Buffy nodded but let most of what he was saying fly right over her head. She didn’t need a history lesson about some daytime mystery drama.
In all honesty she wasn’t even sure why she took the role, although the idea of working on a lower-key show, even just for a little while, was appealing against the usual glitz and glamour she was confronted by.
The four of them set off inside and they ambled down the long corridors of the studio, with Lindsey still rattling off information.
“You already read the script that we had sent over, I assume.” Lilah said tersely, interrupting Lindsey and barging through to walk next to the girl.
It wasn’t a question, but Buffy was not about to tell her that she’d barely glanced at it since she found out on the same day she received it that her boyfriend was fucking another woman.
“Anything else I should know?” Buffy asked halfheartedly.
“All the other information that is relevant will be given to Mr. Giles and I’m sure he can pass along anything else that you need to know. You’ll need to be in hair and make-up in twenty minutes though.” Lilah told her matter-of-factly. “I just hope they can do something with those bags under your eyes. It looks as if your eyelids are packed and ready to take an extended vacation.”
The blonde scowled at the rude woman next to her, but Lilah just smiled, the very picture of sweetness and innocence.
Sensing the tension, Lindsey left Giles’ side and joined the women, slipping between the two.
“You’re going to have a wonderful time on set here, Buffy.” He assured her. “And we’re honored to have a star like you on our little show.”
“Thank you.” She responded gracefully, lowering her head to hide the faint blush that colored her cheeks.
“Oh!” Lindsey said excitedly as he led her toward her dressing room. “Did I mention you’re going to be co-starring with Spike Pryce?”
Buffy froze at the name, the blood draining from her face.
God, could her life get any worse?
Apparently the answer was yes.
And worse seemingly came in the shape of a rude, ignorant, obnoxious ex-porn star.
Oh yeah, she was cursed!
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters and settings are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. No money is being made from this work. No copyright infringement is intended.