Tuning Delicate Strings

Chapter 4

They had finished the show and it went off without a hitch. From what Ike could tell, Nikai was really getting into being on stage with an audience. That was the only time he seemed to let loose. The guys ran off stage and grabbed towels so they could wipe their faces before they met any fans. Ike waited patiently for Nikai to appear but he was taking a long time.
"Ike, what are you waiting for?" Taylor asked impatiently.
"Uh…uh nothing." Ike said, narrowing his eyes toward the direction Nikai was supposed to come from.
"Well, come on, we can't keep everyone waiting then." Taylor smiled as they both began to walk towards the meet and greet area. As soon as they came into view, the noise began to reverberate through the room. Ike sighed to himself, waiting to be bombarded by fans, shoving paper and pens in his face for an autograph.

They got through the entire meet and greet only to find that the girls that they had met during the sound check were at the back of the line. Taylor had no qualms about making his way over to them so of course Ike and Zac followed.
"Hey, why didn't you guys come backstage?" Taylor asked the girl, Phyllis, looking at her directly.
"They wouldn't let us. They said that you guys had to leave or something." She answered.
"Oh, well, forget that, come on." He said, pulling her from the line along with Amanda. All fell silent as all the rest of the fans stood in awe at what was happening. The brothers and the two girls filed into the dressing room and closed the door from the rest of the hubbub.
"By the way, sorry about that, make yourselves comfortable." Taylor said, immediately playing host.
"Uh…are you sure you guys have time for this?" Amanda asked, looking around.
"Oh yeah, we just have to go back to the hotel, it's not like we have to leave for our next gig or anything until tomorrow morning." Zac answered. Taylor glanced over at Ike who seemed preoccupied, staring at the door.
"Ike?" Taylor questioned.
"Oh…uh…what?" Ike asked, jumping from the sound of Taylor's voice.
"Is there something you need to do?" Taylor asked, arching an eyebrow at his older brother.
"Uh…I…kind of need to talk to Nikai?" Ike said.
"Uh…May I ask who Nikai is?" Phyllis asked, staring at the two brothers.
"Our bass player. He's new." Taylor grinned.
"He?" Amanda questioned.
"Yeah." Taylor said, with a questioning tone to his voice. With that, both girls began to laugh hysterically. Ike was getting extremely angry but tried not to show it.
"Might I ask what you find so funny?" He demanded. As soon as he said it, both girls looked up at him with fear in their eyes.
"We apologize." Phyllis said. Ike took a deep breath and then headed to the door, leaving immediately. Phyllis looked over at the two remaining brothers in discomfort.
"Oh, don't mind him, he's just touchy." Zac grinned.
"We didn't mean to upset him." Phyllis said, glancing at Taylor.
"That's all right…but…uh…what did you mean?" Taylor questioned.
"You don't actually think your bass player is a guy do you?" Amanda suddenly said with a chuckle to her voice.
"Yes." Zac and Taylor both said at the same time. Both girls just shook their heads.
"Hate to tell you this but your new bass player is a girl." Phyllis answered.
"NO!" Zac said and then began to chuckle.
"Good joke." Taylor said, laughing himself.
"It's not a joke." Phyllis said seriously. Both boys began to choke.
"Are you all right?" Phyllis said concerned and got up and walked over to them.
"It's not a joke?" Taylor said, wide-eyed.
"No. Your bass player is a very tom-boyish girl, but a girl." She answered, looking at the brothers.
"Oh my god." Zac said, looking at his brother. Taylor looked at him too and sighed.
"Sorry." Phyllis said, smiling awkwardly.
"I can't believe this." Taylor said, shaking his head.
"Well, believe it. I can't believe none of you knew it." Amanda laughed and settled back in her seat.
"Don't mind her." Phyllis whispered.
"Well, Ike will get a big surprise now won't he?" Zac smiled.
"What do you mean?" Phyllis asked and looked at Zac.
"Uh…I…uh…" Zac stammered and looked at Taylor wearily.
"It's…it's just that they're really good friends." Taylor said, smiling ear to ear.
"Oh." Phyllis said.
"Well, I think that we should head on home, you guys must be really tired…" Phyllis began to say as she started towards the door.
"No…don't go yet…uh…why don't we…uh have dinner or something?" Taylor mumbled, feeling his face go flush. He glanced at Zac and could see a grin spread across his little brother's face that just wouldn't go away for a very long time.
"Uh…I…." Phyllis stammered, red faced.
"Sure, that would be cool." Amanda spoke up and slapped Phyllis in the back. Phyllis looked back annoyed at her friend.
"Well, let me just try and find Ike…" Taylor began to say.
"Let's not." Zac smiled.
The group of them headed out of the dressing room and on their way to dinner.

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