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Author's Chapter Notes:
Alyssa decides to go visit her parents... coincidentally the same day Nick is on Long Island as well for a show.

Chapter 12

   Saturday arrived all too soon for Alyssa, and when she awoke that morning she still was unsure of whether or not she should show up at Jones Beach that evening. All week indecisive thoughts about accepting Nick's friendship plagued her, making her choice even more difficult. She decided that she would wait until the last possible minute to make her decision. That way she would be going with whatever her heart told her was best.

    Without a particular reason in mind, (at least that's what she told herself) she spent close to an hour in the shower, making sure to use her favorite smelling coconut mango shampoo and conditioner in her hair. Afterwards, she ran a little bit of mousse in her hair so that when it dryed it would settle in loose waves. Heading over to her closet, she selected a long beige pea sent skirt and a brown tank top trimmed with beige lace. She paired it with a beige cardigan sweater and brown flip flops.

    And you're getting all dressed up why? she asked herself as she got dressed. This was definitely not for Nick. No way. I'm only taking the extra time to look nice because I think I'm going to take the train to Long Island and visit my parents today, she convinced herself.

    Alyssa froze with the realization of what she had just told herself. She was going to go to Long Island? Nick was going to be on Long Island. No, I'm not going to see him. I'm just going to visit my parents and that's that. I haven't been out to see them since I moved into the city, she argued with herself. I'm not going to see Nick! That was why she was going to take the train. If she drove she'd have too much of a temptation to go to the concert. Without a car there would be no way of her getting there and her problem would be solved.

     Satisfied with herself, she put on some makeup and secured her hair back with a tortoise shell clip. Alyssa then grabbed the phone to call her mother to tell her to expect her on the very next train. See, I'm just going to spend the day with them, she decided.

    If that was the case though, Alyssa wondered why the more she tried to convince herself of that, the less she started to believe it.

    "I've forgotten just how much I've missed your cooking, Mom," Alyssa told her mother later that evening as she scarfed the last of her Mom's lasagna down. What luck was it that her mother had just happened to have a pan downstairs in the freezer waiting for a special occasion? It was no secret that Alyssa swore that her mother's lasagna was the best in the world.

    "I can tell. I hope you're eating right out there on your own. You're looking a little thin lately," Mrs. Martinelli commented.

    "I'm fine Mother," Alyssa assured her rolling her eyes. Leave it to her Mom to inquire about her current eating habits Truth was she hadn't really been eating as well as she should've. She'd been living on pizza, fast food, ramen noodles, and anything microwaveable.

    "So what are your plans for tonight?" her father asked her.

    "What do you mean?" she asked. She didn't have any plans. Well, she did, but she wasn't really going to go through with them.

    Her father looked at her suspiciously. "You didn't come all the way out here just to visit us?"

    Shit, she thought realizing how strange it probably looked to her parents that she suddenly just decided to come out to Long Island to see them for no apparent reason. "Oh of course not," she answered with a laugh. "I had arranged to meet with some friends from college tonight. We were going to get some drinks at Charlie Brown's and then probably head to a bar." The lie had came out of her mouth quicker than she could stop it.

    "That sounds nice," her mother interjected. "Are they coming by to pick you up?"

    Since when did they get so smart? Alyssa asked herself. Now she had to invent some other means of getting out of the house. How she wished she had decided to drive out, so that she would have had her car. "No, I'm going to actually take a cab," she continued to lie.

    "A cab? That's ridiculous! Your mother will drive you," her Dad insisted.

    He can not be serious, she thought. Some things never change. "Dad, I'm 25 years old. I refuse to have my 'Mommy' drive me to meet up with some friends. I'll be fine," she assured him. "I would've driven out here myself if it wasn't for the fact that we're going to be out drinking." She winced hoping that she wasn't laying it on too thick.

    "Are you going to be staying over here tonight?" her mother asked. "You're more than welcome to. Your room is still just the way you left it."

    Alyssa bit her bottom lip. This was getting way too messy. "We'll see. If possible I'd like to get back to the city tonight, but if it's too late to take the train back I'll come back here. All right?"

    Her parents just nodded in agreement. Alyssa let out a silent sigh of relief. They had bought it. Now all she had to was actually call a cab, but that would be simple. She'd take the cab to the train station and get the next train back into Manhattan and her parents would never know the difference.

    About twenty minutes later her cab pulled up to the house. Giving both her parents a hug and a kiss goodbye and thanking them for dinner, she headed outside towards the cab. After getting in and slamming the door shut the cab driver asked, "Where to?"

    The train station, her mind reminded her, but what actually came out of her mouth was just the opposite. "The Tommy Hilifiger arena at Jones Beach."

    Did I just say what I thought I said? Where I promised I would steer clear of tonight? Who was she kidding? The whole day her subconscious was pulling her towards Nick. The more she tried to fight it the stronger her desire to see him became.

    She could practically see the cab drivers eyes light up. Jones Beach was at least a good half an hour away, which would make this one expensive cab ride. Nick better make this worth it, she thought darkly to herself as the driver pulled away from the curb.

    After arriving at the arena and paying a $30 cab fare, plus tip, Alyssa looked at her watch. Doors had definitely long since been open, but she doubted that any of the opening acts had gone on yet. She'd probably just get to see Nick for a few quick minutes before he had to start getting ready for the show.

    She wondered if he was thinking of her now. Was he backstage pacing, waiting for his phone to ring? Was he beginning to lose hope that she wasn't going to come after all? For some reason this scenario gave Alyssa a strange sense of empowerment. The ball was in her court now, but the question was did he really care which way it went?

    Taking a deep breath, she took out her cell phone and hesitatingly found his number in her phone book. With a trembling hand, she pressed the send key. She listened to it ring and began to panic when she didn't hear an answer. Watch, I came all the way out here and he's not even going to pick up his fucking phone, she ironically thought to herself. That would be typical of him. She was just about to give up when she heard him pick up. "Hello," he answered.

    "Nick, hi. It's me Alyssa. I'm out in the parking lot of the arena by the gates where you first walk in. I just got here," she told him, sounding relieved that he had finally answered.

    "So you decided to come after all," he said, sounding a little smug. "I was beginning to think that you were going to turn me down."

    "Well, I was in the area," she replied. It was the perfect response. It didn't sound as if she had come down there just to see him or anything.

    "Okay. Well stay where you are and I'll send Q down to pick you up and bring you backstage," he instructed, ignoring her remark.

    "All right," she agreed. "I'll see you in a few then. Bye."

    Alyssa closed up her cell phone and put it back inside her purse. Leaning back against the edge of the gate she began to wonder, If I could care less about Nick then why do I feel so excited to see him?