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Sixteen-year-old Trina Lambert ran down a narrow corridor at the Texas football stadium. Her long black hair swung with each step. Dark brown, almost ebony, eyes twinkled with excitement. A black silk dress draped her dancer's body. A shaft of late afternoon June sunlight lit the dusky tunnel like a spotlight. Three other teenage girls followed closely behind her.
Trina paused at the backstage door, took a deep breath and turned to her friends. "I can't believe we're here."
Trina's best friend, Hayley Rogers, said, "I know. The guys are really looking forward to seeing us. Here it is summer and we haven't had one date!"
Tall, athletic Sharon burst out, "March seems like years ago. I've talked with Bryan on the phone, but seeing him again in person is going to be so wonderful. Will he still like me? Oh, dear. I can't wait to see him. It's so great–"
"Knock it off, Sharon," Amanda interrupted. "Casey is so cute. I want to see him now."
Smiling at the typical discussion among her closest friends, Trina thought, Seth Jordan, I missed you. That's not like me to stick with one boy this long. You must be my destiny.
Memories of meeting Seth, who played drums for the world famous rock band, Millennium, flooded her mind. Three long months ago, she and Seth had met during spring break in Denver. Millennium had a week off to ski with Hayley and all her friends.
Life had taken on a strong sense of unreality when Hayley had moved away from Denver to Bedford, Texas last summer and her idol, Steve Wilson, better known to teens around the world as Shadow, fell in love with her.
When Amanda's parents had offered toopen their large Victorian home in Denver to the band members last March, the four friends had enjoyed a spring break to remember forever. It hadn't taken Trina long when she had the time to spend with him to figure out Seth's bad boy routine was an act. He hid a great sense of humor behind a rough exterior. Any time his best friend, Steve, was in danger, Seth blocked the way for him, acting as bodyguard until help could arrive.
Today, Millennium's manager, Patrick Gaither, answered the knock on the dressing room door and the four girls entered the large room. The rhythm of Trina's heart increased when she met Seth's gaze. His dark eyes seemed to draw her forward. Seth's curly dark hair lay in waves to his shoulders. His red muscle shirt defined a strong, masculine physique with broad shoulders. His tight jeans revealed further proof of a well-exercised body.
"Hello, love. I'm glad you're here," Seth whispered across the space between them.
His words drew her to him; her last few steps taken almost at a run. His embrace made Trina feel warm and comforted.
"It's been a long time."
"Yeah. I can't believe we've been on the road so long." Seth agreed. "I'm glad we have a break and you can share it with me."
Her mind shouted, He likes me! Reality had never been this wonderful before. Maybe this relationship would last longer than her others had. Seth was so different from the guys at school in Denver.
Trina glanced around the room at her friends. Watching Amanda gaze into Casey McCord's face with an adoring look made Trina smile. For the first time in their eleven-year friendship, Trina thought Amanda seemed at peace with herself. The ongoing battle against overeating seemed well under control. Her friend's newly slim figure looked stunning in a lime blouse trimmed in royal blue with matching slacks Red hair curled in spirals and a hint of freckles across her nose combined to make Amanda a very pretty girl.
As usual, Sharon talked in fast, excited tones, interrupting Trina's thoughts.
"I've never tried surfing. Will you teach me? I know I'll love it. Please." Sharon's green eyes sparkled in the bright dressing room light.
A wry grin and mischievous twinkle in his gaze reflected Bryan's feelings about Sharon. He shrugged. "Why not? You'll give me some competition."
Soon the lively group settled down into couples, quietly talking. Only Rohn remained alone. Trina felt sorry for him. She wished their group of friends included a girl for the attractive bass player.
Flipping long strands of straight, silky black hair over her shoulder, Trina grinned at him. "Come sit with us."
Slow smile tugging at one corner of his mouth, Rohn walked toward them. He eased onto the metal folding chair.
"Loosen up. It's only an hour till we go on." Seth's amused voice made Trina giggle.
"I like your stage clothes. You all look awesome." Trina glanced up and down Rohn's black-and-green clad frame.
"Thanks. As long as it pleases the girls."
"It does." Trina grinned, then turned to Seth and pleaded, "Tell me about the place we're going."
"You'll love Port Aransas. It's different. I call it Island Time because the pace is slow and easy. And the gulf waters are always so warm this time of year." Seth stretched.
Copyright © 2003 by Wanda Horton