It was too early on a Saturday morning for me to even exist. But, Mark practically begged me to come with the band to NOVA. They were going to be doing an interview on the breakfast show. I didn’t really know why he wanted me there with them. Bianca said something about having extra support; I asked her ‘why me?’ She just looked at me as if she thought I should know the answer to that apparently stupid question.
My excuse was that I was still half asleep, and considering how late I stayed up the previous night, you could hardly blame me for acting naive about Mark’s request. My brain was always mush if I hadn’t had enough sleep. Especially on a weekend. Which was a little odd since I was usually fine about getting up on Sunday mornings.
Anyway, I fronted at the radio station, just to humour him. The band deserved some local support, at any rate.
Did I mention Bianca’s a morning person? I turned my head to see the band’s guitarist heading my way. She looked like she’d had about fifteen cups of coffee; her eyes were bright and she was grinning so hard I thought I’d never see another smile the same way again.
“Hey, Bianca, ready for the interview?” I asked.
She giggled in response, shaking her head. “To be honest I’m so nervous I think I’ll puke before I even get in the studio.”
I knew how that could be. I hated presenting myself to the public, or in front of groups of people. Crazy, I know, considering my choice of profession. And, you’d probably think the same for musicians who had anxiety issues. But, a lot of good musicians got into the business because they wanted to make music, and not necessarily to draw crowds. For some that was a bonus, and for others the biggest nightmare.
I know for Pierre he had big trouble fronting the band when they first started. Apparently he had been painfully shy of the crowds and used to perform the whole short gigs they did with his back to the audience. You’d never realise that now, seeing him perform live, the kids under his complete control, eating out of the palm of his hand. But, I guess he matured in that regard.
“I’m sure you’ll be fine, the guys at NOVA are pretty sweet, and it’s not like the listeners will be able to see you.”
“True that,” Bianca flopped down next to me on the sofa I had managed to commandeer. She glanced around. “You seen the others yet?”
“Nope. But I got the impression they’d be here already. Maybe they’re hiding from us.”
Bianca laughed, shaking her head. “Maybe they are. Oh well, we’ve got a few minutes before we need to go on, anyway.”
I smiled faintly. She tilted her head at me. “You’re not awake yet are you?”
I laughed. “You’re observant.”
She shrugged. “I’m a morning person. But, I can tell someone who isn’t.” She patted me on the shoulder. “Really, thanks for coming. The guys will appreciate it.”
I mock grumbled, “They’d better. I forfeited my sleep-in for this.”
“Oh, they sure do. Especially Mark.” Bianca grinned some more at me.
Blinking at her statement, I shook my head. “Right.”
She waggled her eyebrows at me. I rolled my eyes then craned my head toward the entrance just as the doors swung open and the guys finally walked in. The three of them came in bearing steaming cups of coffee. I giggled to myself.
Bianca glanced at me and stage-whispered, “They’re not morning people.”
“Oi,” Mark laughed, “Mornings are overrated.” He stopped in front of us and smiled softly at me.
“I’d have to agree with you, there,” I said, blushing a little at his look. His eyes commanded my attention, and I really didn’t notice anything else. Bianca cleared her throat, drawing my gaze away from his. I noticed him glancing in her direction as well.
Bianca’s lips twitched as she said, “That may be, but we really need this exposure, so you’ll just have to deal.” The seriousness of her tone reminded me of the way Chuck used to get with the guys in Simple Plan. He was always thinking of how the band could be promoted to the different industries. The brains trust was he. In some ways she was similar to him in that regard.
I shook my head to once again clear my thoughts, now was not the time to be reminiscing on things that I didn’t really want to think about. Particularly anything to do with him. Luckily, Mark was talking again, drawing my focus away from my mind.
“Yeah, it’s all good, really. Did you get the questions?”
Bianca nodded at Mark’s question. “Yep. Here.” She handed a sheet of paper over to him. “It’s just the stock standard, how’d we start and all that stuff. Nothing too curly. Though we all know what they can be like on the Breakfast show.”
I snorted. “They’re all high on caffeine.”
“Speaking of,” Mark started as he grabbed a cup of coffee from the tray he was holding and held it out to me, “figured you’d need one too.” Smiling, I took the cup he offered and sipped from it slowly.
He nodded just as the show producer called for them to go in. “See you after?”
I leaned back against my seat and nodded back, smiling softly.
* * * * *
While I waited I flipped through one of the magazines that was on the coffee table in front of me. It was some music magazine and it had several good articles in it. Even one on Fools Rush In… My hand started to shake slightly when I turned the page and found myself staring at a full page photo of that band… I blinked, eyes glossing over the words printed across it.
SIMPLE PLAN, BACK WITH A SIMPLE PLAN…
I stared at the photo. Part of me was screaming to turn the page. To stop looking. But, I couldn’t do it. Pierre. Was right there. Looking as dashing as always. Totally unfair… I slapped the magazine shut and closed my eyes tight.
I almost jumped out of my skin at Bianca’s voice. Peeking out from one eye I met her concerned gaze.
I nodded. “Yeah, just catching up on some sleep…” I think that convinced her because she grinned and grabbed my hand, pulling me up out of my seat.
“Come on. We’re done, the guys are waiting for us at the van.”
I allowed her to tug me out of the NOVA studios relieved at the distraction.
“What should we do now?” Mark asked as Bianca and I joined them.
Bianca grinned. “It’s too early for lunch…”
“We didn’t eat, though,” Mark pointed out.
Laughing, I shook my head. “I know a place where we can get all day breakfast.”
* * * * *
“So, get this,” Andy held up a finger his eyebrows waggling at us as he spoke, “We’ve been booked to be opening act for a big name international band.”
We were sat around a table at Aroma Café, eating decent sized all-day breakfasts. Bianca had her fork close to her mouth, tomato just hanging of it. Ben was buttering his toast. Mark was halfway through a piece of bacon, but started coughing at his friend’s statement.
“What?” Bianca’s eyes were even brighter than before. I just sat, blinking at Andy. He grinned through a mouthful of poached egg.
“Management sent me an email.” He held up his phone. “Simple Plan.”
The fact that I managed not to react was surprising; I just blinked several times and said, “That’s really cool.”
Mark chuckled, nudging me. “Isn’t that your favourite band?”
I nodded. “Yeah…”
Bianca grinning, said, “Don’t go all fangirl on us, hey.”
I smiled a little, downing my coffee. “No fear.” I’d long gone past the fangirl stage. They didn’t really appreciate it anyway, especially from someone who knew them so well. Though, sometimes I pretended to do it to get on Pierre’s nerves…
“Marly’s way too mature for that, Bianca,” Mark said, defending me. I lifted my shoulders at that, glancing at my watch.
“I wouldn’t know about mature. But, they’re just a band, nothing special.”
Andy laughed. “Right, and that’s why every student you teach knows they’re your favourite band.”
“Only Sian, Andy.” I shook my head. “I do like other music.”
Mark chuckled. “Obviously.” He looked down at his phone. “Oh, by the way, did you see The Eagles are coming to Perth to play one show.”
I nodded absently as my mind wandered back to Andy’s announcement; Simple Plan were going to take these guys on tour. That was pretty amazing for them. Mark and the rest, that is. I knew Simple Plan were pretty great…
“So, you going?”
Bianca smiled at me and said, “The Eagles.”
Oh, right. “Yes, I got tickets to take dad.”
“We could all meet up,” Ben said, his suggestion meeting with a chorus of affirmation.
“We could,” I said. “But, plenty of time to talk about that.”
Andy finished his coffee, agreeing with me. “Yeah, December’s a while off, And we have this tour first.”
I hid my sigh in my coffee, smiling around it whilst pushing my anxieties away.
No point in worrying, right?