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Authors: Nicola Haken

The Making of Matt

BOOK: The Making of Matt
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The Making of Matt

 

by Nicola Haken

 

 

 

 

The Making of Matt

 

Copyrigh
t
©
2015 Nicola Wall

 

 

Cover Design by Reese Dante

 

http://www.reesedante.com

 

 

Edited by E. Adams

 

 

Licensed material is being used for illustrative purposes only and any person depicted in the licensed material is a model.
 

 

This book is a work of fiction. All names, characters, places and events are created from the author’s imagination, or used fictitiously. Any resemblance to any actual events or people, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

 

All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced without written permission from the author, except in the case of critics or reviewers who may quote brief passages in their review. If you are reading this eBook and have not purchased it or won it in a blogger/author competition then you are reading a pirated version. Please support the author by deleting this copy and purchasing it from an authorised distributor.

 

Dedicated to a very special friend

~ Denise Shirley Carter.

Thank you for sticking with me, for checking up on me, for knowing the
real
me, for your support, your encouragement, for listening to my troubles.

Thank you for not letting me disappear.

I love you.

Chapter One

 

~Matt~

 

 


Ugh
,” I grumbled, shrugging away whatever the fuck was nudging my shoulder. “I said get the hell outta bed! The wedding starts in a half hour!”


Shit
!” Leaping out of bed I barged straight past Alex and into the en-suite. “Why the fuck didn’t you wake me?”

“I did! When I left the hotel almost two hours ago you said you were getting up.”

“That was
two
hours ago?”
Jeez, it’s amazing how quickly time passes when you’re sleeping.

Kip and Elle were getting married today. They’d been planning it for the last twelve months and I was glad it was almost over so Elle wouldn’t be able to bore the shit outta me with freakin’ bridal magazines anymore.

“It’s not my fault,” I protested around a mouth full of toothpaste foam. “I’m jetlagged.”

“Dude, we’ve been here almost a week.”

“Well my body’s extra sensitive. Still don’t see why they couldn’t just get married back home.”

“Because it’s not
their
home. They’re both from London. All their friends and family are over here.”

By this point I was hopping through to the bedroom, pulling on my underwear with one hand and shaving my face with my electric razor with the other. I preferred the electric version. I liked the light layer of stubble it left behind that, if it were possible, made me look even hotter.

“Grab my suit,” I said, setting down the razor and picking up my cologne from the nightstand. Huffing, Alex padded toward the closets, only to turn straight around when he opened them.

“There’s nothing in here.
Please
tell me you remembered to pick it up yesterday.”

“I asked
you
to pick it up.”

“Um,
no,
you didn’t. You said you were just-”

“Never mind what I said. What the fuck am I gonna wear?” I let out what could only be described as a growl before rubbing at my puffy, tired eyes. “You’re gonna have to go get me another suit.”

“I’m not your bitch, Matt. Besides, there’s no time. The car will be here in fifteen minutes.”

I sighed, running my hand over my face. “Fuck.”

“Just throw on some jeans and a vest. To be honest, they’ll probably be expecting it.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?” I snapped. We argued a lot lately and I didn’t really get why. Whenever we were together for too long I started getting restless and on edge, which was bizarre because I thought of Alex as my very best friend.

“It means you’re unorganized and unreliable and everyone knows it.”

“Screw you, asshole.”

With no other option, I rummaged through my suitcase until I found a pair of dark jeans and a white vest. I coupled it with a smart jacket – not quite wedding attire but it would have to do. I wasn’t unreliable, just… industrious.
That means busy, right?

Once I was as presentable as I could be within ten minutes I took what felt like my first breath of the day. It was only then I really looked at Alex and realized how smart he looked.

“Wow. You look kinda hot, dude,” I complimented, eyeing his sharp gray suit up and down. I found myself flirting with Alex every so often, partly because I flirted with everybody and partly because it made him smile. I liked that. He was my friend, seeing him happy made
me
happy.

“Not too bad yourself.”

“Goes without saying,” I agreed, combing through my hair with my fingers. It’d been years since I sported my natural color. The girls dug the dirty-blond look. But since I lost my hair in a bet last year, I didn’t bother bleaching it again as it grew out. So now I was my own light-brown. Turned out the chicks liked that, too.

Less than half an hour after I got out of bed, we arrived at the church. When we got out of the car Alex took one last disapproving look at me before snickering to himself, and then I followed him inside. It was an old-fashioned type of building. Very British. Like the kind of building you would’ve seen on Downton Abbey or Miss Marple, or any other of the shit TV shows Alex liked to watch – old brick, stained glass windows and a steeple. I didn’t like churches – I never had. They were creepy places. Eerie. I always felt like I was being watched by someone I couldn’t see and it left me feeling unnerved.

I walked up toward the front of the church where I saw Sawyer and Jake sitting on the first pew. Ryder and Mason were on the opposite side, along with Kylie – Elle’s sister – and a bunch of old people I’d never seen before. When Sawyer saw me, the sarcastic bastard looked at his watch, exaggerating the move, before raising an eyebrow. I ignored him, choosing to go straight to Kip and wrap one arm around him, clapping his back.

“Congratulations, dude.”

“Thanks.”

“You nervous?” He
looked
nervous.

“Okay, no taking the piss…but not nervous, just emotional I guess. I can’t wait to call her my wife.”

“You’re on time,” Sawyer interrupted. He wore a lopsided smile and was one more sarcastic comment from getting it punched right off his face. “But what the fuck are you wearing?”

“Sawyer!” Jake scolded in a harsh whisper. “You can’t swear in church.”

“Shit, yeah. Shit I did it again. Fuck, sorry,” he flustered as if he had some kind of disorder.

“Long story,” I explained, referring back to his original question.

“You forgot to pick your suit up didn’t you?”

“I didn’t forget. I’ve been industrious.”


Industrious?
” Sawyer laughed.

“What?” I retorted. “That means busy.”

“I know what it means, Matt. Just a big word for you. Where’d you learn it?”

“Go fuck yourself. I’m not a total dumbass.”

“Go on, tell me,” he pressed with a mocking smile.

“The Chase,” I admitted with a defeated sigh. The Chase was a UK game show that I’d discovered while lounging around in the hotel with nothing to do at night. It was filled with quizzes and intellectual questions and I’d learned quite a few new things over the last few days. “Bet you don’t know the chemical symbol for sodium?”

“Sit down,” Sawyer dismissed. “Elle’s car’s just arrived.” Instinctively my eyes wandered to the back of the church, and sure enough there was a small commotion going on outside. “It’s Na by the way,” Sawyer whispered in my ear before I sat down.
Smart ass.
Then after giving Jake a brief kiss on the cheek, he jogged lightly along the aisle and toward the open doors.

An elderly woman dressed like a wobbly vanilla pudding started up a depressing tune on the great organ at the front of the church and immediately everyone stood from their pews, so I followed suit. I tracked the gaze of the people stood beside me toward the back of the church, and there she was. Without a doubt the most beautiful woman I’d ever seen, Elle made her grand entrance, linking Sawyer’s arm as they walked in small steps toward us. Everyone stared, unable to take their eyes off of her. Her white satin dress was understated – fitted and smooth with a deep v cut into the neckline. It was perfect. Stunning in fact.

When they reached the priest Sawyer brought Elle’s hand up to his lips, kissing it gently before placing it in Kip’s waiting hand. I’d never seen such a look of pure adoration in a man’s eyes before. I watched
him
watch his bride to be. He smiled so wide, so proudly, and his eyes sparkled with longing. Right then and there I
saw
what love was, though I didn’t particularly understand it. “Dude,” Alex whispered straight into my ear. “You crying?” he continued with a shit-eating grin on his face. I swear Alex was the king of shit-eating grins, and more often than not it was at my expense.

“No,” I protested, blinking the tiny drop of moisture from my eye. “I’m too hot, that’s all.”

I needed to get my shit together before I ruined my reputation. But damn, who knew weddings were so freakin’ emotional? I’d never been to one before. In fact I’d only been in church once since I was a kid and that was for my uncle Jimmy’s funeral. Even
that
wasn’t as tear-jerking as this. Though in fairness, that could’ve been because my uncle Jimmy was a dick.

The emotions running wild through my veins quite quickly turned to boredom when after almost half an hour the priest was still rambling on about some part of the bible I knew nothing about. Naively, I thought they’d come in, say their vows, stick their tongues down each other’s throats and we’d all be heading off to party. I was wrong. The ceremony lasted for the longest hour of my life, and by the end of it I had to purposely keep shifting in my seat to stop myself from falling asleep.

The furor of clapping at the end of the service brought me back to life and I stood up, cheering for Kip and Elle.

“Beautiful wasn’t it?” Alex said, bumping my shoulder with his as he clapped.

“Uh, sure.”

“Don’t worry, I’m sure the party will be less boring.” He laughed to himself, shaking his head a little. “Wanna make a head start while they’re posing for photos?”

“Bar all to ourselves? Let’s go.”

 

**********

 

“People should be arriving soon,” Alex noted, pushing the cuff of his shirt up with his finger to expose his watch. We left for the hotel as soon as Kip and Elle left the church, leaving them with the rest of the guests, standing for photos in the church grounds. Security surrounded us and it reminded me of being on tour. There were men on every exit of the hotel, the church grounds, and Neil - Sawyer’s personal bodyguard - seemed to be everywhere I looked. He’s the only one in the band who still had a personal guard. Fucking diva.

“Then we should have another before the bar gets crowded,” I said, waving my empty glass in the air.

“You okay? Weddings are supposed to be happy occasions and you’ve seemed kinda miserable today.”

Miserable? Am I?

“I don’t know.” I shrugged. “Guess I just realized I’ll never have what Kip has. I’ve never really wanted it before, but today…”

“You’re twenty-nine years old. You have plenty of time to settle down.”

“But do I
want
to settle down?”

“If you don’t then what’s this conversation about?”

“Like I said, I don’t know. You don’t understand because you’re still a baby.”

“I’m only
two
years younger than you.”

“Things just feel different since the band split. Touring, getting laid, making music…it filled up my days perfectly. I didn’t have time to want anything else. But now? Now there’s just
nothing
. The rest of the guys have all found someone. They’re pursuing new paths. I need to do something, Alex. Give myself a purpose again.”

“Then we will.”

We?

“When we get back home I’ll help you. We can brainstorm. Find something you’re passionate about and pursue it.”

“Never really been passionate about anything except drums and women.”

“Then we’ll find you a new passion.”

“What’s this ‘we’ business?” I asked, cocking an eyebrow.

“Hey, I’m not trying to interfere or anything. We’re friends is all. Friends help each other.”

Unable to find any words that didn’t sound sappy as shit, I chose to bump fists with Alex instead. Smiling, he brought his beer to his mouth but got distracted by whoever had just come up behind me.

“Hey, Ry,” Alex said.

“Oh, hey. Where’s Mason?” I asked, standing from my stool to give him a one-armed hug.

“He’s the photographer, remember? Which means he needs to follow Elle around all day. They should all be here soon.”

I nodded. “Drink?”

“Sure. I’ll take a lemonade please, mate.”

Ryder was teetotal these days. He didn’t drink or even smoke cigarettes anymore. He learned in therapy that the pot and the alcohol were substitutes for heroin and quickly worked on giving them up. The smokes proved the hardest for him, so now he vaped instead. I had a go of it once and almost choked on my freakin’ lungs. But hey, it worked for him.

I remember the day he told me about everything he’d been through. The rape, the addiction, the shit with his asshole parents. The guy had more issues than Cosmo. Not knowing what to say, I mainly nodded through the conversation but Christ if my respect for him didn’t shoot up six billion percent. He’d been seeing a therapist for almost a year now. I didn’t know what they talked about, only that it completely changed him.

For quite a while after everything came out in the open he rarely smiled. He seemed nervous in my company, like he was too embarrassed to look me straight in the eye. But as the months passed, as he attended more therapy sessions, he opened up more and more. He was no longer all about the drink, the sex and the humor. In fact, I don’t think he ever was. He was just too afraid to be himself. Fuck knows why because the
real
him was pretty fucking amazing.

BOOK: The Making of Matt
13.56Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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