Backstage Pass / Page 17

Page 17

Author: Olivia Cunning

She moved around him and entered on the driver’s side before sliding over the white leather bench seat to the passenger side. He climbed in, closed the door and started the engine. It roared to life with a low-pitched purr. He revved the engine. “She has some kick.”

“You bet your sweet ass she does,” Myrna said.

“V-8 engine?”

“Yeah. A 312 with dual Hol ey carburetors.”

“Fuckin’ sweet.” Brian put the car in gear and peeled out of the parking space. He cranked the wheel to one side and drifted sideways before settling into a straight path toward the buses. He decided to drive around the parking lot several times. Myrna cringed every time the tires barked, but Brian was enjoying himself so much, she couldn’t dampen his spirits. Myrna caught sight of Jake, the roadie with the blond mohawk, waving at them wildly. “I think they’re ready to leave.”

“Yeah, I suppose.” Brian drove up behind the bus and stopped abruptly. “That was fun.”

He drew her across the bench seat and kissed her. “Let’s go to bed.”


“I could use some sleep.”

“Oh, we’re going to sleep.” She smiled, ducking her head.

“For a few minutes, at least. You’ve worn me out today, woman. And I’m not used to getting up early. It’s usual y party al night, sleep al day around here.”

The car door opened. “Ha,” said Jake. He tipped his head into the car. “I get to drive the Thunderbird.”

“Not if you drive like Brian, you don’t,” Myrna said.

“I’l be sweet to her.”

Brian climbed out of the car. “I’m not a bad driver. You can’t put a big engine in a little car and expect me not to see what she’s capable of.”

Brian helped Myrna out of the car.

“Sweet!” Jake said. He climbed into the driver’s seat. “See you in Des Moines.” The door slammed. The tires squealed as the car shot backward.

“Great!” Myrna said. “A maniac is driving my car.”

“He won’t hurt it. If he does, I’l buy you a brand new Porsche.”

“I don’t want a Porsche. I love that car! It belonged to my grandparents.”

“It wil be fine. I promise.”

She watched the round tail ights of the Thunderbird brighten at a stop sign. The tires squealed again as the car shot forward. It fishtailed before gripping the road and speeding into the night.

She stomped her foot in frustration. She grabbed the front of Brian’s T-shirt and pul ed him toward the bus. “Let’s get moving. The faster we get to Des Moines, the faster I can kick that guy’s ass.”

“Ooooo. Can I watch?”

“Oh yes. You can definitely watch. You are going to hold him down for me.”

Myrna started up the bus stairs, but a body hurled from the bus’s interior halted her progress. She caught the young woman and if Brian hadn’t steadied her, she’d have toppled to the asphalt.

“What part of ‘get the fuck out of here’ don’t you understand?” Sed bel owed at the young woman from the top of the stairs. Myrna recognized the girl as the one who Sed had lifted over the barrier about an hour before.

“Sed,” the young woman sobbed, clutching her hands together in front of her chest. “Please let me stay with you. Please!”

“I’m finished with you. Get lost.”

Sed, looking highly annoyed, turned and moved further into the bus. The young woman started up the steps, but Brian grabbed her arm. Enraged, she yanked on her arm and slapped at Brian’s chest repeatedly. Her eyes widened when she recognized who she was beating the hel out of.

“Oh God, I’m sorry, M-Master Sinclair.” She covered her mouth with a trembling hand. Tears poured from her eyes. “Talk to him for me. Please! T-tel him I love him.” Mascara ran down her face in black-tinged rivulets. “Tel him I’l kil myself if he doesn’t love me back.”

Brian took her shoulders in his hands and shook her slightly. “Hey. Hey. What’s your name, sweetie?”

She looked up at Brian and Myrna was struck by how vulnerable she appeared. She couldn’t have been much over twenty.

“My name?”


“K-K-K-Karen.” She threw herself against Brian, clinging to him desperately.

He spread his arms wide and gave Myrna an “I’m not touching her” look over Karen’s shoulder. Brian spoke in a soothing tone to the girl. “Karen, you have to understand something about Sed. He’s not looking for a relationship with anyone. He just wants to get laid. You know? There’s nothing wrong with you. You’re a beautiful girl. He wouldn’t have picked you if you weren’t.”

Myrna smiled. So sweet of him to try to console her.

“I just thought…” She took a deep, gasping breath. “I thought…” She rubbed her face against his shoulder, smearing tears and makeup over his shirt.

“What did you think?” He patted her shoulder lamely.

“I thought if I showed him how much I loved him, that he’d…” Her voice lowered to a whisper. “…love me back.”

Brian pul ed her away and looked into her watery eyes. Myrna had never seen him look so serious. “Sed can’t love anyone, Karen. Not since Jessica.”


Karen’s eyes narrowed. “I’d kil that bitch if I could.”

“Not if I got to her first,” Brian murmured. He gave Karen a gentle hug and released her. “Now, walk away with your head high, sweetheart. You survived sex with Sedric Lionheart. I’d wager you even enjoyed it.”

The girl grinned and kissed Brian on the cheek. “Thank you for making me feel better, Master Sinclair.” She glanced at Myrna as she passed, but quickly averted her gaze.

Myrna would love to talk to her to learn more about her psychology. Did she real y think she was in love with Sed? The real Sed?

Or the rock star version who paraded up on stage? And who was the real Sed? Myrna honestly couldn’t say she’d met him. Brian ran up the stairs of the bus. There was a loud crack, fol owed by a thud. Myrna dashed after him. She paused in the stairwel , eyes wide. Sed lay sprawled across the bus’s floor with Brian standing over him, his fist bal ed. Sed rol ed over to lean on his elbow and wiped at the blood at the corner of his mouth with his thumb.

“Can you be any more of an ass?” Brian yel ed. “I’m so fucking sick of being your damage control.”

“Why do you care so much about my whores, Brian?”

They’re just like you, darling, Jeremy’s voice intruded. Myrna’s eyes widened.

“Because they’re not whores,” Brian said. “Whores don’t cry when you tel them to get out of your bed.”

“They sure do act like whores.”

Sed climbed to his feet. He grabbed Brian by the back of the head and Myrna winced thinking her lover was about to get pounded. Brian was much smal er than Sed, who was several inches over six feet and could no doubt bench-press twice his own weight. Sed didn’t hit Brian though. He kissed him on the side of the head.

Sed’s gaze was on Myrna when he said, “I don’t think you realize how lucky you are, my friend.”

He turned, shuffled down the hal way and closed himself in the empty bedroom.

Eric leaned out of one of the curtained bunks along the side of the cabin. “You shouldn’t have hit him, Brian. You know why he’s like that.”

“Yeah, I know.” Brian slid into a leather-upholstered booth surrounding the dining table and rubbed his face with both hands.

“Who’s Jessica?” Myrna asked.

Brian glanced up at her. “The woman who ripped Sed’s heart out and fed it to sharks.”

Myrna lowered her eyes. She could identify. Her heart had been fed to sharks long ago and she’d never retrieve it.

Chapter 9

Myrna rol ed over in the narrow bunk and snuggled up against Brian’s warm body. He sighed in his sleep, his arm tightening around her before relaxing again.

The bus hummed loudly as it climbed a hil , temporarily drowning out Trey’s soft snores coming from the bunk beneath them. They hadn’t reached Des Moines, so what had awoken her?

She opened her eyes to darkness. The bed was comfortable enough, but was twin sized, so there wasn’t much room to move. Fine with her. It gave her a good excuse to press up against the wonderful man beside her. She burrowed her nose in his neck and inhaled deeply.

From the nearby dining area, a can clinked against the table. So that’s what had pul ed her from sleep. Who’d be awake at this hour? She crawled over Brian’s body and peeked through the curtain. Sed sat at the dining table with his back to her. He took a sip of his beer, while he gazed down at something in the palm of his hand. She wondered if he’d mind some company. He seemed lonely.

Myrna climbed from the bunk, tugging Brian’s T-shirt down over her panties. Her luggage was stil in her car, so she hadn’t had anything to wear to bed and Brian hadn’t wanted her to sleep nude this close to the guys. When her feet hit the floor, Sed turned his head to look at her. He smiled slightly and slid whatever was in his hand into his pocket. She stood next to the bench across the table from him and waited for him to acknowledge her.

“I couldn’t sleep,” he said.

“Can I join you?”

“Yeah, of course. Do you want a beer?”

She shook her head. “I don’t drink. My ex-husband was an alcoholic and I can’t stomach the taste of it.” Or the smell. Sed pushed three empty beer cans aside. “I… didn’t realize you’d been married before.”

She shrugged. “It was a long time ago.” She brushed her hair behind her ears and changed the subject. “I think Brian’s real y sorry he hit you.”

“Yeah, I know. But I deserved it. Sinclair doesn’t clobber someone unless he deserves it. Brian’s a good guy. Not like the rest of us.”

“I think you’re al good guys.”

He grinned at her, his blue eyes sparkling in the low luminosity cabin lamps. “Even Eric?”

She chuckled. “Yeah, even Eric.”

“You’re right. They are good guys. I’m the asshole of the bunch.”

She reached across the table and took his hand. “That’s not true, Sed. I know something’s bothering you. You can talk to me, you know.”

Sed lowered his gaze. “You shouldn’t touch me, Myrna. Brian wouldn’t take it wel .”

She wanted to ask him something that she’d wondered since meeting them two nights before. “The last girl who dumped him. The one he got drunk over. Did you…?” She tilted her head to one side in question.

“Yeah, I banged her. And his previous girlfriend, too. I told you I was an asshole. He should hit me more often.”

Myrna squeezed his hand. “I won’t let you bang me. Okay?”

He glanced up at her and smiled. “You sure?”

Her heart thudded. She blew a breath through her lips. The man was mesmeric. Enigmatic. Virile. She’d never met anyone like him before. “Yeah, I’m sure.”

“You had to think about it though.” He chuckled. “Women are al alike. Whores.”

She stiffened, even though she knew he was just trying to get a rise out of her. That word bothered her. It had been flung at her too many times in her past. “Yeah, we’re al wh-whores. Especial y around the rock stars we admire. Why do you think that is?”


“Why do you think women are so promiscuous when they’re near you? Or Brian? Or Trey? Any of you?”

“Hel if I know.”

“Yeah, me neither. It would be fascinating to study it though.” Maybe she could get a research grant funded on the topic. Were groupies always loose or did their behavior change when around the band? She knew Sinners’ fame affected her. The excitement of screwing a man whom thousands of women lusted after. A strange psychology. Not that she had time to research something fun like groupie promiscuity. Her current project wasn’t going wel at al . She had to concentrate al her efforts on keeping her grant funding or she might as wel kiss her academic career good-bye.

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