23 - Chariot - Stacy
It was cold, wet, drizzly, and most of all, I was stuck in New York for my eighteenth birthday. All I wanted was to be at home having a huge party with all my friends. Instead, I was hauled up in a hotel room with my two brothers, who at the moment were too involved in playing some video game to notice that I was sitting on the couch pouting. Yeah, I know I’m too old to pout, but wouldn’t you be if you were stuck in a hotel on your birthday? I doubt I could even leave the room without being mobbed by a few fans.
Deciding to take the risk anyway, I grabbed my coat and twisted the doorknob.
"Where are you going?" Taylor asked without glancing up from the television set.
"Mom said we can’t go out unless Jason goes with us." Jason was our bodyguard. Because of him was the reason why we could never have any privacy. We couldn’t even go on a date without Jason going. How was I supposed to kiss a girl with him watching my every move?
"I’m eighteen; I’ll do what I want." I shut the door behind me and walked down the long corridor to the elevator. It could be risky going into the lobby if any of the fans found out what hotel we were staying at. The security downstairs was tough, so nothing too bad could happen to me, right?
I stepped off the elevator and quickly checked my surroundings. To my fortune, not a single teenaged girl was in my sight. I quickly made my way over to the hotel restaurant and searched for a stop to sit. The lunch hour was in full swing and the only empty seat I saw was at the bar. I moved my way over.
"Is anyone sitting here?" I asked the lady at the bench next to the empty one.
"That depends. Are you sitting down or not?"
"I’m Isaac Hanson." I took a seat on the stool and held out my hand. "You are?"
"Chariot. And I know who you are. Where are you brothers? Aren’t the three of you inseparable?" Her green eyes rolled in her head and she turned back to her drink.
She was beautiful. Her dark auburn hair was cut just under her ears and her bangs just touched the top of her eyebrows. Her short, black pleated skirt ended mid-thigh; the white blouse she wore was unbuttoned at the top, showing a small hint of cleavage; black stockings ended just above her knee; and she wore black Mary Janes. Black liner outlined her eyes and her lips were the shade of a plum.
"We don’t always stay together. We do have separate lives," I remarked to her question.
"So how did you wind up at a bar?" She swallowed the last mouthful of her drink and flagged down the bar tender.
"I need another scotch," she told him.
"I’ll need some identification, Miss. My shift just started."
She pulled her wallet from her purse and showed the bar tender her birth certificate. She was twenty-one as of June nineteenth.
"Are you going to answer my question, Isaac?" This woman was getting on my nerves, yet she was so intriguing that my body trembled with every sound of her voice.
"I wanted to get away from everything. It’s my eighteenth birthday and just for one day I wanted to be someone different. You know what I mean? Of course you wouldn’t," I answered my own question. "You wouldn’t because you don’t have to hide from screaming fans every day of your life. I want to get away from it all for just one day, just to enjoy my birthday. Birthdays are supposed to be happy, but this one is making me miserable. It’s way down there next to one of the worst days of my life." I could have kept going, but I got the feeling Chariot was losing interest in what I had to say.
"So let’s go do something. You can be anyone you want. Be Superman for all I care." She finished her second drink and pushed away from the bar, holding her hand out to me.
"Chariot, don’t you think you’re a little old for me?" I questioned.
"It’s fake. I’m only nineteen," she whispered. "Let’s go. I promise you won’t regret it."
"And how do you plan to do that?" I wasn’t in the mood from company, and unless she planned for us to go somewhere worth my while I wasn’t game.
She leaned over to my ear, her breasts just barely brushing against my shoulder. "I’ll be your Lois Lane," she whispered.
I gasped quite loudly and quickly stood up and followed her out of the restaurant. We waited patiently for the elevator and rode it up to the seventh floor. The corridor looked much like the floor I was staying on, with the exception of different pictures.
"You want a cigarette, Isaac?" Chariot asked once we arrived in her room, lighting one her herself.
"No, thanks; I don’t smoke."
She sat down on a chair next to the small table. I pulled out the other chair and sat down myself as I took in the contents of her room.
It seemed about the same size as mine, but the layout was nothing alike. A huge, king-sized bed jutted out from the middle of one wall. There was no balcony, but one whole wall was a floor-to-ceiling window, which showed a great view of New York City. The table was glass and had two small white chairs with beige cushions. The carpet was an awful shade of blue, but matched nicely with the white walls. Because of the large window and the brightly shining sun, the whole room was lit.
We sat in silence while Chariot finished her cigarette. She then stood up, untucked her white blouse and walked over to the closet. She pulled out a pair of jeans and a tee shirt.
"What are you up to in New York?" She asked, turning to face me as she un-buttoned her blouse, revealing a bronze coloured, satin bra.
"Uh, not much," I stuttered. Either Chariot didn’t have an inch of shyness in her or she was trying to turn me on. If that was the case, she was succeeding. All I could do was thank God that I pulled on a pair of baggy jeans this morning.
"You must be here for a reason right?" She pulled her stockings off and pulled down the zipper on her skirt, letting it fall to the floor. She now stood in front of me in only her bra and panties. The panties happened to be the match to the bra she was wearing.
She bent over to retrieve her skirt from the floor and I stifled a rather loud moan. Immediately, I felt guilty and prayed she didn’t hear me.
"Isaac, have you never seen a girl this way before?" Chariot asked, as she climbed into her jeans, which clung to her legs. They reminded me of how Taylor wore his pants.
"Don’t say it like it’s a sin or anything. It’s not that big of a deal."
"I never said it was. I just figured because of your status you would have scored with at least a few girls." She sat back down at the table. I watched her grab a napkin and wipe the lipstick from her lips. Next, she lit another cigarette.
"Smoking can kill you." I knew that was probably the wrong thing to say at that time, but it was just something that naturally came out of my mouth when somebody lit up in front of me. Maybe it was because of all the times my mother has drilled the three of us about smoking and drugs. Maybe it was because the smell of smoke disgusted me when it was ground into your clothes.
"Is that so? I’m not dead yet so it can’t be that harmful towards myself. Besides, it’s not worth all the hassle of trying to kick it." She turned her head and exhaled a long link of smoke, escaping from her slightly parted lips. She turned back and smiled, showing her perfectly white teeth.
I pulled the cigarette from her hand, brought it to my lips and took a long drag. I tried my hardest not to choke, but I gave up once I could no longer breathe. I coughed a few times and shrugged at Chariot, who was giving me a strange look. I took one more drag before I handed back the cigarette.
"Smoking can kill you, Isaac," Chariot mimicked. She tapped her foot against my shin and laughed. "You’re such a rebel."
"Yeah, that’s me. ‘Isaac the Rebel’." She handed me her cigarette and I took one last drag before putting it out. "Is there something we’re going to do or are we just going to sit around here all day?"
"You want to see something neat? If you lie on the bed and turn your head to just the right angle you can see the Statue of Liberty."
"Come one, I’ll show you." I followed her to the bed and lay down. I turned my head towards the window and looked around outside for a few minutes. I couldn’t see any sight of what might be the Statue.
"I don’t see it," I finally said. Chariot leaned over me and picked up my hand. She pointed my finger in the direction of the Statue of Liberty. After a few minutes I finally caught the corner of it with my eye. I turned my head a little more until the whole Statue was in view.
"Do you see it yet?" She asked. Her body was still outstretched over mine and she trailed her fingernails over my inner arm.
"Yeah, I see it. It looks sideways from the angle your head is at." I turned to look at Chariot. Her face was only inches apart from mine. Her eyes were mesmerizing; the only colour of green I’ve ever seen remotely close to her colour were a cat’s.
Emotions overcame me and the only thing I wanted to do was kiss her. But, as inexperienced as I was, I wasn’t sure if I should. Did she want me to kiss her? Was it wrong to kiss her because I knew I would never see her again?
I felt something warm on my lips and looked up to see Chariot pressing her lips against mine. She forced my lips apart and slid her tongue between my teeth. Her hand left my arm and she started to wind my hair through her fingers.
"Isaac," she stopped and said to me. "It’s okay. You don’t have to be so tense. Unless you don’t want to do this..."
"I want to do this, Chariot, but I’m not very experienced at this. I’m not really sure what you expect of me." I couldn’t believe I just went out and told her that I had never kissed a girl before. To her, I must have seemed like a fool. I was eighteen and this was the first time I had ever been this physically close to a girl. Sure, I had been on plenty of dates, but never had I ventured a move because Jason was always there looking over me.
"Just do whatever comes natural to you; I’’ show you the rest."
She moved her body on top of mine and once again began kissing me. I moved my hands to the small of her back and pulled her close, hugging her tightly. I was turned on and I knew she could feel it by the way she shifted her weight on me. We laid there for what seemed like centuries, out lips locking and unlocking, and then starting all over again. I moaned as she glided her hands across my body and I slowly ventured mine to the front of her chest.
Chariot stopped, sat up, took off her shirt, and watched as I admired her chest. She reached around and unclasped the back of her bra, letting it slide off her shoulders and hit my waist. For the fifth time that day I uttered a small moan that I wish I hadn’t. Chariot didn’t seem to mind, she just simply shook her head and smiled, letting me take as much time as I wanted.
Shyly, I sat up and pulled at the base of my grey tee shirt, sliding it over my head. Now was the time that I wished I had worked out a little more often with Taylor. Chariot, once again, didn’t seem to mind. She ran her hands up and down my chest mumbling something about how soft my skin was.
I lay back on the bed and pulled Chariot down with me. I wasted no time in moving my lips downwards until they were on her chest. She responded with a little moan of her own, signaling that what I was doing was all right.
Turning my body, I pinned Chariot to the mattress, my elbows resting on either side of her head. I lowered my body onto her as I moved my lips back to hers. She forcefully tugged at my lips with her own, almost bringing me over the edge. Chariot took control, her hands reaching for the button on my jeans.
"Chariot, wait," I stopped her. "This probably isn’t such a good idea. I mean, I’ll most likely never see you again after today. We’re not going to be able to have a relationship or anything."
"Don’t you think I know that? I never wanted a relationship, Isaac. I just want to have a good time with you. That’s all."
I had to stop and think. Was Chariot only using me for sex or was it the other way around? Was she letting me take advantage of her? Maybe it was a little of both. Either way, it didn’t matter much at this point. I had a beautiful girl lying beneath me who was ready and willing. I didn’t like to think of the pact that my first time was only going to be a one-night stand, but I couldn’t back down at this point.
Memories floated back to me as she slid my pants from my body. Memories of those talks with my parents about how you should wait until you were married and was with the girl you love; memories of Melissa. She was the girl whom I had the biggest crush on when I was little. I had written ‘More Than Anything’ about her. She was the girl from ‘seventy-seventh Street’. We were always sort of best friends because there was never any other kids our age in the neighborhood. I never had the courage to tell her how I felt before we left for Los Angeles to record ‘Middle of Nowhere’. I still think about her on some days, wondering what would have happened if I had told her about my feelings. Would we have been together today? Or would it just have destroyed our friendship?
Today, though, today I wasn’t going to have to spend the rest of my life wondering what if. I wasn’t going to shy away from what I wanted this time, not again. So maybe I would never see this woman again and maybe I would spend my time moping around about her for awhile after, but I would truly be disappointed if I didn’t do this now; if I didn’t give my love to this woman.
"Isaac, are you alright?" Chariot questioned. By this time we were both in the nude and Chariot was waving her hand in front of my face trying to catch my attention.
"Yeah, I’m fine." I stopped a minute to take another look at her before I began to give to her what I could never give any woman again.
I opened my eyes, not recognizing where I was. All I saw was the buildings and skyscrapers of New York City. I could even see the corner of the Statue of Liberty. That’s when it hit me: I was lying in Chariot’s bed.
The events of the afternoon came rushing back to me; the emotions I felt; how amazingly wonderful Chariot had been.
Then I felt guilty, guilty that I knew I would never see her again. Guilty of giving away something so sacred to me to a girl who literally meant nothing in my heart. Chariot was only a girl who had picked me up in a bar and I followed her back to her room. It was my fault. I knew exactly what was going to happen when we left the bar, but yet I didn’t stop it from happening. I was just glad to be out of the supervision of Jason and my parents that I rebelled against the first thing I could.
Chariot wasn’t in the bed next to me. I heard the shower running so I guessed that was where she was. I turned onto my back, my head sinking into the big, fluffy pillow.
My stomach growled with hunger, but I was too tired to get up and see if there was anything to eat. I just ignored the pains and closed my eyes. Visions of Chariot flashed through my head; the first time I saw her down at the bar; her sly smile; her naked body lying underneath mine.
I realized then that I wouldn’t be able to walk out of that room today and never think about her again. I wanted to keep seeing her. I wanted to be able to hold her in my arms the next time. But there was never going to be a next time, was there?
I heard the shower turn off and I waited for Chariot to come out of the bathroom so I could try to convince her that we should continue the relationship. Would my fans think it was all that awful if I had a girlfriend? We wouldn’t be able to see each other often, but there was always the phone.
After waiting fifteen minutes, I stood up and dressed. I crossed to the bathroom and knocked on the door. She must have been finished dressing by now.
"Chariot, can we talk?"
"Sure. The door’s unlocked."
I pushed the door open and found Chariot sitting on the bathroom counter in purest form painting her fingernails. She certainly was the type of girl who wasn’t shy about showing off her body.
"Don’t you want to put some clothes on first?" I asked.
"No, It’s not as if you haven’t seen me this way before. Unless you have a problem with it." She dipped the brush back into the deep pink liquid and closed the lid.
"I don’t have a problem with it. I’ve been thinking, Chariot. Maybe we can continue this somehow."
"Isaac." She reached out and touched my cheek with her hand. "Do you really, deep inside, think this would ever work?"
"We could try. We don’t just have to give up now without even trying, do we?" I moved closer to her, pressing my lips against her cheek.
"Isaac, there’s nothing to try. You said yourself earlier that you wouldn’t be able to continue this. Why now are you changing your mind?"
"I don’t know. I guess I just really like you and thought we could try to work something out." I touched her shoulder with my hand, feeling her shiver from its coldness.
"Isaac, you know nothing about me. You don’t even know my last name. Tomorrow you won’t remember what I look like and a few days from then you’ll have forgotten my name. All you liked was the sex." She moved from the counter over to the bathroom door, pulling a robe off the hook. She pulled it over her shoulders and tied it shut.
To me, when she put on the robe, it signified closure. The matter was closed and there was going to be no further discussion on opening it.
"I guess you’re right," I stated.
"Isaac, I know I’m right. You need to go out and find yourself someone you can have a relationship with. I’m not the right girl for you."
"You might not be the right one for me, but I’ll still never forget you. I’ll always hold you in a special place in my heart." I moved over to her and pulled her into a tight hug. The end was coming to a near and we both looked like we needed the comfort.
"Yeah. I’ll be the one you remember all right. I’ll be remembered as the first girl you slept with," she choked out a smile, tears starting to well up in the corners of her eyes.
"No. You’ll be the only one who cared enough to make me have a fun eighteenth birthday. If it wasn’t for you I would be at home, well, the hotel, laying on the couch playing video games with Taylor and Zac." I squeezed her tighter and wiped the tears from her eyes with my thumb.
"Don’t cry, alright." If she started crying it would be impossible for me to leave here today.
"You should go now." Chariot took my hand and led me to the door.
"I had fun, Isaac. I hope you enjoy the rest of your birthday," she said to me.
"I had fun, too, Chariot." I walked out the door and took a few steps before I turned around.
I walked back to her and gently kissed her forehead. "Thank you."
I walked away again, but when I looked back a second time the door was closed. Chariot was gone from my life forever. She had only been in it for such a short time so why did I miss her so much already?
I fought back the tears as I rode the elevator back up to my floor. It would all be for the better that that part of my life was a closed book. It would be less hassle and I wouldn’t have to worry about what the fans would think.
As I went to pull the hotel card out of my pocket I found I piece of paper that I didn’t remember being in there when I got dressed this morning. I pulled it out and unfolded it. As I read, I leaned against the door and sighed.
Fate brought us together,
And destiny meant for us to be apart.
I’ll never forget the time we had,
You’ll always be in my heart.
I wiped the tears from my eyes as I had done to Chariot minutes earlier. I stuck the card in the door and slowly pushed it open.
"Where were you?" Taylor asked.
Funny how I was gone for over four hours, but yet the room was exactly as I had left it. Taylor and Zac were still in front of the television playing video games and, again, Taylor was too busy to look up from the screen as he talked to me.
"Out," I mumbled.
I dropped the key card on the night table and threw myself down on the bed. I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. This was going to be a birthday I would never forget.