AFTER THE CONCERT
Phoebe tried to help as George, Jeremy, Eddie and many friends talked and packed up their instruments and sound system. Ecstasy was in the air. Sammy had invited the band to play again in a week, so the experience would go on! But Phoebe did not share in the general delight. She was haunted by worries about Abby, and unsure of the status of Stephanie and her friends. Were any of them attached to any of the boys? It seemed likely.
George took a moment to publically thank Phoebe, and she decided to stay around. Stephanie and Eddy both had cars and carried the group to the gas station office for a little celebration. But Phoebe became very irritated with Jeremy for ignoring her. When Stephanie had to leave early, Phoebe decided to take the ride back home.
As they drove out of the gas station Stephanie wasted no time with small talk. “Why didn’t you stay?” she asked. “Live a little. Your work too much.”
“How about you,” returned Phoebe. “You were having fun.”
“Well, I’ll be honest with you. Eddie and I have a date. We’re going to a little spot…”
“I’m happy for you. I understand things better now.”
Stephanie replied with some heat: “Yeah, well, there are some things I don’t understand. I thought you liked Jeremy, but you two treat each other like enemies.”
“I don’t understand him any better than you do,” Phoebe blurted out.
“Jeremy likes you, I hope you know.”
Phoebe raised her voice and was almost yelling: “We were close! You don’t know the things we’ve done together. And now he acts like I don’t exist.”
Stephanie looked her in the eye and said, “He thinks you’re in love with George. He’s stepping aside to let the two of you figure it out. You’re a couple of fools in my opinion. Wake up!”
Phoebe was so stunned she couldn't speak. Stephanie stopped the car in the field opposite Phoebe's house.
“Stephanie, I had no idea… It’s such a shock.”
“A good one, I hope.”
Phoebe smiled. “Yes… very good.”
“Can I ask for a favor then? I hate my job at Hickory Securities. The place is creepy. Do you know Bentley, the owner, and his friends? They try to flirt with me, and they’re old and creepy. That tall guy Milton Morphy is like the leader of them all. Even Bentley bows down to him.”
“I should have warned you months ago,” returned Phoebe. “It’s worse than creepy. They’re trying to take over the town. We’re secretly organizing against that group. But pretend you don’t know, it’s dangerous.”
“Please," said Stephanie, "I need a new job, like tomorrow. Something like yours.”
“I had kind of promised that to Abby…”
“Abby Chapman? I’ve heard them mention her at the office like I’m not supposed to hear. What’s she got to do with all this?”
“A lot. Stephanie, let me fill you in on a few things.”
“Not now, I’ve gotta go.”
“One more thought. Doesn’t Sammy need another employee already?”
“Put in a good word for me. I’ll take that job. I’m outa here.”
Phoebe jumped out onto the field, and Stephanie burned rubber as she roared off.
After The Concert illustration
by Carlos Uribe
Learn More About Phoebe And The Players In Middletown!www.protectorsofthewood.com
From PHOEBE BREAKS THROUGH (Book II)