Tuning Delicate Strings

Chapter 11

"C'mon Ike, hurry up!" Zac demanded as he dragged his older brother out of their hotel room with Taylor behind them.
"Why…why are we going down the hallway…I thought that the party was going to be in our room?" Ike asked, trying to keep up with Zac.
"It is…it is…we just have to pick something up…" Zac said, smiling ear to ear. Zac turned to Taylor and motioned for him to go up ahead.
"Uh…you have to wait here for a second." Zac grinned as Taylor walked passed them.
"Where's he going?" Ike questioned, trying to look over Zac.
"Never mind that." Zac said, attempting to adjust Ike's shirt.
"Hey…hey…get off." Ike said, slapping his younger brother's hands away.

"Phyllis! Amanda!" Taylor called from the living room area of the hotel room.
"We're coming." Phyllis yelled back. Taylor looked back out the door and motioned to Zac.
"Okay…c'mon…" Zac said, grabbing Ike by the wrist and dragging him.
"How come I have this horrible feeling, I'm going to be set up?" Ike said but was ignored. Without another word, Ike was shoved forward from the help of his siblings but not before seeing the two girls that Taylor and Zac were with the night before.
"Hi…bye." Phyllis grinned as she walked passed him. He turned his head to look at them only to be shoved in the room and the door slammed in his face. He stopped suddenly when he recognized which room he was in and instantly tried to get out but noticed that it seemed someone was holding the door shut.
"Uh…" Ike was cut off when he felt the urge to turn around.

"OH. MY. GOD." Came the simultaneous reply from both Ike and Nikai. Nikai stood in the doorway, wondering what the hell was going on, only to see Ike, standing before her. Her eyes went wide and she immediately started to back up towards the bedroom.
"Ni…Nikai?" Ike stuttered, gasping for air.
"Oh god!" Nikai said and immediately ran into the bedroom, locking herself in.
"NO! Nikai!" Ike yelled, running to the door and stopping.
"You…you're…you're a…" Ike stammered, not knowing what to say or what to do. There were ten thousand things going on in his mind all at once.
"Nikai's a girl! NIKAI'S A GIRL! WHY DIDN'T I SEE THIS?! WHY DIDN'T I NOTICE THIS?!" He thought to himself.

"OH GOD!" Nikai screamed.
"HE KNOWS!!! OH GOD!!!" She yelled and looked around.
"Nikai?" Ike's voice came through the door.
"Wha…what?" Nikai's voice apparently wasn't cooperating because it only came out as a whisper.
"Why didn't you tell me?! Why didn't you tell me you were a girl?!" Ike said, starting to feel anger rise in his body.
"WHY!?" He yelled and slammed his hand against the door. Nikai jumped hearing his fist hit the door.
"Open the door!" Ike demanded, grinding his teeth. Nikai reluctantly got up from her seat on the bed and unlocked the door, opening it fully but had her eyes cast down to the floor. Ike stared at her harshly.
"Why didn't you tell me!?" He said, his face flustered.
"I…I didn't tell anyone…it was…was for my career." Nikai mumbled.
"You know…this…this is just ridiculous…I…forget it…" Ike said, covering his eyes with his hand.
"It wasn't because of you…" Nikai said, trying to be calm.
"How do I really know that…you…you lied to me…you…is Nikai even your real name!" Ike said, hissing the words out.
"Yes, Nikai is my real name." Nikai answered.
"I…I just don't understand…" Ike said, softening his tone.
"You wouldn't…you never will either." Nikai said, turning away from him and sitting on the bed with her face turned.
"I could have…I would have…" Ike said.
"Do…do you have any idea what I've been going through this whole time…do you?!" He said, a wild-eyed look on his face.
"Do you have any idea what I've had to go through!" Nikai said, turning harshly at him, grinding her teeth and furrowing her brows.
"I've…I've had to live my life as a lie! A GODDAMN LIE! All so that some hot shot record execs would take me seriously as a musician and not think of me as some little bimbo just wanting to make bubble gum music." Nikai shot at him and stared at him with a deadly look in her eyes. Ike was taken back by the look and quickly lost all his anger and felt pity instead.
"I have lost my whole personality…it's gone. I'm not cut out for this…I've tried so hard…" Nikai said, looking down again and shaking her head.
"Do you realize what I was trying to tell you the other night." Ike finally spoke up, making Nikai look at him.
"I understand what you were trying to say…" Nikai said, a grimace turning up on her face.
"I was trying to tell you that I like you…not just as a friend. I thought I was going nuts…I was actually beginning to question my sexuality…" Ike said seriously.
"I don't need this…I can't handle this…" Nikai suddenly jumped up from her seat and made her way out of the room.
"NO! Nikai! We need to talk about this!" Ike yelled as he ran out of the room and grabbed her by the arm.
"This conversation is over and so is me being your bass player. I quit!" Nikai said and stormed out of the room, knocking Ike's siblings right over.
"NIKAI!" Ike yelled as he ran out of the room, but couldn't catch up with her.

"Uh oh." Zac said with wide eyes as he looked at Phyllis, Taylor and Amanda.
"I told you this was a bad idea!" Phyllis hissed. Ike began walking back towards them, hands clenched, teeth grinding and a look of potential homicide, written across his face.
"I…I…think that…" Taylor stuttered.
"WHAT THE FUCK WERE YOU THINKING?!" Ike yelled, eyes flaring.
"We…we…" Zac stammered.
"SHE FUCKING QUIT! DO YOU UNDERSTAND ME!" Ike said, shaking his fist at them.
"You know what…forget it…as far as I'm concerned it's over…this is all over…I don't want to see either of you!" Ike said, staring at his brothers and walked back to their hotel room. The brothers looked at each other and Phyllis and Amanda.
"This is just wonderful…" Amanda sighed and put her hands on her hips.
"We are so screwed." Zac whispered to Taylor. Taylor nodded in agreement.
"Well…there's only one thing to do." Phyllis said, turning her back.
"Please…we're…we're really sorry to get you involved…I mean…" Taylor suddenly said, putting his hand on Phyllis shoulder. He almost looked like he was going to burst into tears.
"Don't worry about that now…you go talk to your brother…we're going after Nikai." Phyllis said, turning back to him and smiling faintly.
"Re…really?" Taylor stammered.
"Yeah…we helped you with this before…we'll stick it out." She grinned.
"WHOSE THIS WE!" Amanda yelled.
"MANDA SHUT UP!" Phyllis said angrily.
"Thank you!" Taylor smiled and grabbed a hold of Phyllis and hugged her.
"I wouldn't start doing that until we get Nikai to come back." She said, mid embrace.
"Okay, well, then for good luck." Taylor smiled, feeling his face go flush.

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