Taylor hovered over the toilet, closing his eyes tight. This was the part he hated. He slowly reached his hand up and stuck his finger down his throat, which caused the automatic reaction he was so used to. He held onto the sides of the bowl as he violently began to choke as he vomited. Before he could stop his already violent retching, he heard the stall door open and someone gasp. He looked up, quickly wiping his mouth only to feel a shock of dizziness hit him.
“Oh my God, are you all right?” A girl, about his age asked. She had dirty blonde hair in which she had up in a messy bun with a few wild tendrils around her face. She was thin and small in stature. She had on a black “staff” shirt with white lettering and a pair of body hugging black pants on. Her green eyes were framed with glasses, which were staring into Taylor’s.
“Oh…uh…yeah…I…” Taylor stammered, red faced. She immediately kneeled down and put her small hand on his back, rubbing it.
“Are you sure?” She asked, very concerned.
“Yeah…yeah…” He said, raising his hand. She looked around and got up quickly, leaving Taylor to sit on the floor in a heap. Taylor could hear the water running and soon after, she was back with a dampened paper towel. She folded it and moved in cautiously, wiping Taylor’s mouth carefully. Taylor stared into her eyes intensely as she did it. Suddenly, he realized that if this girl knew, she would probably tell his parents or someone else. He grabbed her hand slightly and looked her directly in the face.
“Please don’t tell anyone about this.” He pleaded.
“Wha…what? Why?” She stuttered.
“Uh…I…uh…” He stared. She looked into his face puzzled.
“Uh…you’re…you’re not making yourself sick…are you?” She asked as she still wiped his mouth.
“I…I…” Taylor stammered. She stopped and looked at him.
“You are…aren’t you.” She said quietly. Taylor couldn’t say anything. He could just feel the tears start to brim in his eyes.
“Please don’t tell…” he pleaded.
“I promise.” She answered.
“My name’s Phyllis.” She said suddenly.
“Thank you Phyllis.” Taylor said. Phyllis put out her hand and Taylor took it, trembling. Phyllis wrapped her arm around his waist to help him up.
“Oh my God…” She said, poking him slightly in the stomach.
“How long have you been doing this to yourself?” She said in astonishment to how incredibly thin he was.
“Uh…uh…” Taylor stuttered. She closed her eyes and sighed to herself.
“Taylor…call me Taylor please.” He said, looking at her as she walked over to the sink.
“Taylor, do you realize what you’re doing to yourself. You are slowly committing suicide.” She said seriously.
“I…I…you don’t understand.” Taylor said defensively.
“It’s not my place or anyone else’s to say how to run your life but…you have to know that you’re not doing yourself any good by starving to death.” She said.
“I imagine there are a lot of people that care about you.” She added. Taylor looked up at her with tears brimming in his eyes again.
“It’s…it’s just this…this thing…” He trembled as a tear escaped his eye and ran down his face.
“I see myself in the mirror every day and…and…and I…” He couldn’t even finish what he was saying as he choked on his tears.
“Taylor, you’re beautiful. I’m not just saying that so you stop but you truly are.” Phyllis said, then turned a bit red. Afterwards, Taylor immediately looked at her in the face.
“Wh…what…” He questioned. Phyllis sighed.
“You heard me. Everyone knows you are, why don’t you?” She smiled. Without another word, Phyllis walked over to him and wrapped her arms around him, giving him a slight hug to console him. She let go and Taylor smiled slightly.
“You should really talk to your parents about…”
“No, no I…I can’t.” Taylor stammered.
“This isn’t going to go away on its own. You need some help.”
“I…I can’t tell them…I can’t tell anyone…” Taylor said, turning to the mirror.
“This is your life your talking about…I can’t tell you what to do.” Phyllis sighed then began for the door.
“Please…please don’t leave yet?” Taylor said. Phyllis turned and looked at him.
“I need to talk to my friend.” She said.
“But…but…” Taylor stammered. Before Phyllis grabbed the walkie-talkie she had attached to her belt.
“Manda, can you come in the bathroom, we have a problem.”
“What is it Phyl?” A girl’s voice said back.
“Just come in here.” Phyllis said. She replaced the walkie-talkie and looked at Taylor. He had his head down, staring at the floor. Suddenly, he sunk down to the floor, burying his face in his hands as he cried. Phyllis looked down at him sympathetically. She kneeled down on the floor and wrapped her arms around him.
“What the hell!” A girl yelled. She was tall, about 5’5 with the same “staff” shirt on as Phyllis. She had brown hair, which she kept in a braid along with blue eyes that were hidden behind glasses. Unlike Phyllis, she had dark jeans on.
“Hey Man.” Phyllis called and looked up.
“Uh…Phyl…I thought you meant problem as in the toilets are overflowing or something, not you hugging some g…OH MY GOD!” Amanda yelled and put her hand over mouth as Taylor looked up. Amanda ran over and grabbed Phyllis by the arm, yanking her away from Taylor.
“Phyl, you do realize you’re hugging Taylor Hanson.” Amanda whispered.
“I’m not stupid Amanda. He’s really upset.” Phyllis answered. Amanda looked back down at him.
“If his body guards even knew you were near him…”
“Man, relax. Listen, we have to help him, he’s…uh…sick.” Phyllis said and looked at the floor and back up quickly.
“Sick? What kind of sick?” Amanda whispered.
“Starving himself sick. I promised I wouldn’t tell anyone but I need your help. He won’t tell his parents or anything…” Phyllis said, looking at Amanda seriously.
“What do you want me to do?” Amanda asked.
“You have to make sure no one comes in this bathroom or knows where he is.”
“No problem.” Amanda looked over at Taylor and smiled hesitantly. She looked back at Phyllis and headed to the door.
“Phyllis, what’s going on?” Taylor asked as he wiped his eyes with his hand.
“Amanda is going to make sure no one comes in here.” Phyllis said and leaned against the sink.
“I really appreciate this…I mean, I don’t even know you or anything.” Taylor stammered.
“No problem. You just have to get some help…uh…are you sure you’re going to be able to perform tonight plus to a meet and greet?”
“I’ll have to. I refuse to cancel it.” Taylor said confidently and stood up, brushing off his pants.
“So…uh…how long have you been working at the Civic Center?”
“Not long, Amanda is my supervisor. When I heard you guys were coming, I definitely wanted to be apart of it.” Phyllis smiled.
“You live around here?”
“About 20 to 25 minutes away.”
“Oh…uh…” Taylor fought for words but couldn’t think.
“Just relax, I suggest that you have something to eat AND not throw it up.”
“I’m not hungry.” Taylor answered and looked at his feet.
“I don’t care!” Phyllis said sternly. She walked to the door and opened it a crack.
“Man, could you make a plate of food and brink it back?”
“Phyl, I…I can’t. Employees aren’t allowed, plus…we have only five minutes until show time.” Amanda answered.
“SHIT! Is anyone out there?”
“No, I heard Zac say he couldn’t find Taylor and a bunch of them left to look for him backstage somewhere.” Amanda answered.
“Taylor, you have five minutes to get on stage, everyone is looking for you.” Phyllis turned back and looked at him.
“CRAP!” He yelled and scrambled to his feet.
“Thank you.” He stopped and smiled at her just as he left the bathroom.
“Be careful.” She warned.
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