When Maya left the counselor’s office that morning, she was feeling completely at peace and excited to start her new life. She thanked the counselor for all her help and wished her the best of luck.
She didn’t get too far from the the student building, before she ran into Eddy on the sidewalk.
He looked even worse than he had before. Instead of his usual stylish hair, it was all disheveled and hanging in his face. His skin was incredibly pale, his eyes were black from possible lack of sleep, and he looked like he hadn’t shaved in weeks. All that was nothing compared to his clothes, which looked like they had come out of some rag bag. She couldn’t believe this was the same man she had dated for all those months.
Maya’s heart went out to Eddy, and she found she couldn’t refuse when he asked her one more time, if she would just sit and talk with him. With her life in order and all her decisions made, she felt that now was the time to make amends with Eddy, so that she could start her new life without any baggage in tow.
Eddy was in his usual desperate state, begging Maya to take him back. She looked at him carefully as he spoke, and wondered exactly what had happened to him. Other than the obvious changes in his life, what had caused this drastic change to go from the self confident, suave, sexy man to this shrunken person in front of her? It was too drastic a change, and she knew there had to be something incredibly important behind it. She had to admit she was slightly suspicious, but she also wondered if the whole persona from before, had just been an act from the start. Perhaps Eddy wasn’t the man she thought he was all along.
She decided to walk with him over to the Grotto, so they could talk and she could give him her news in person. He was devastated to hear that she was leaving, and it hurt to see him so upset. He tried to convince her to stay, to give him another chance, while she tried to figure out what could have happened to him.
They talked about Eddy being kicked out of the band, and ultimately Illeana Montegrande and their newborn son. Eddy stressed over and over again that he didn’t know she was a teen and how sorry he was about the affair. Maya was still feeling slightly sore about the topic,
but she had thought about it quite a lot since the confrontation on the hill that night.
She admitted to him, that he did have a point when he told her he didn’t know if they had broken up. She had left him in limbo when she went into hiding in Sunset Valley. He swore to Maya, that Illeana had been the only one.
She didn’t want to to leave University town with Eddy in this broken state, so she tried to talk to him about his life. She wanted to impress upon him, that even though he was without a band, his talent hadn’t changed.
“Go start up another band. Just begin again. You have an amazing voice Eddy! Don’t let your talent go to waste. Do as you wanted and make your father proud!”
“I can’t do it without the guys and they have gone on without me. The band’s popularity has gone through the roof without me and with Jonny J as the new star. Girls are going crazy for him!”
“So what? You’re
Eddy Mullins. Girls go crazy for you!”
“Right. Just not you .”
Maya was surprised by that statement. To her, that almost sounded like a wounded man. Yet that didn’t make sense. Eddy couldn’t possibly love her. She shook her head, because that was not a line of thinking that she wanted to follow.
“Eddy, regardless of what happened between us, or who’s fault things were, I have always and will always care about you. I hate seeing you like this.”
“Couldn’t we just try again? Please Maya, I need you in my life.”
“Eddy, you don’t need me. What you need is to find the Eddy you used to be. Get back that sexy swagger of yours.”
“I can’t be that man without you.”
“Oh Eddy,” Maya said hiding a smile behind her hand,
“You were that man long before you met me. It’s time to make a plan for your life. Put out some feelers for new band mates and a new manager. Start writing music again.”
“It’s not that easy Maya. Starting up a band takes cash, which is something I no longer have.”
Maya eyed Eddy up carefully. “What kind of cash are we talking about here?”
“I would need an easy two hundred and fifty thousand to get started. It’s all about royalties and legal fees, let alone basic band costs. So you see, there is no point in even thinking about it. I have no idea what I am going to do with my life without my music.”
Eddy covered his face and looked like he was trying not to cry. Maya, once again felt sorry for Eddy. It didn’t seem fair that she had all her dreams come true, while his talent would go to waste.
“How long do you think it would take you to earn that money back once you were established and playing again?”
“I don’t know, It all depends on the success of the band. Maybe three years?”
“That sounds reasonable. I will lend you the money, and when you can, you will pay me back.”
“Oh no Maya. No. I couldn’t take your money. Now I feel bad for even bringing it up. I don’t want you to think I was asking!”
“Nonsense. I insist. I know your talent and I know you will pay me back. It’s not like I don’t have the money. We shall have some papers drawn up and make it all legal. Then you can get started on your dream.”
“I don’t know how to thank you Maya. This is more than anyone has ever done for me.”
“Well, I need to go. I have a ton of things I need to get done before I leave town.”
“So you really are going then. You are going to make an incredible well known artist around the world some day. I wish you luck.”
“Thank you Eddy.” In a gesture of friendship the two hugged and Maya went on her way.
The minute she walked out the door, Eddy threw back his head and laughed. It worked, it really worked! It took weeks but this whole act finally got him exactly what he was looking for. She had bought the whole thing. The pale skin, the shadowed eyes and his downtrodden hunched demeanor. All he needed to do was sign on the dotted line and he was home free. At least with Maya, he could continue to put off paying her back. Which was much better than Jerry, whom he didn’t trust and had threatened his life more than a few times recently. All over a little bit of money.
He couldn’t wait to get out of these crappy clothes and start dressing like himself again. Plus this beard was driving him crazy! Just a few more days and Eddy Mullins will be back! He pulled out his phone, to call Jerry and give him the good news.
What Eddy didn’t know, was that in the same room, someone else was also making a call and for Eddy, that was bad news.