Must've Been Love
Chapter Seventeen: Christmas Eve On TV
"Well, ladies and gentlemen, it's been a busy week in the lives of Jewel
Connie settled herself on a stool, sending the audience an amused grin,
a wicked twinkle in her blue eyes. "Not only have California's favourite
all girl rock group secured the number one slot this Christmastime by the
narrowest of margins ever recorded, but Diablo's own song, 'Believer' has
soared in the chart from 18 to 7 in a matter of days! Could it be anything
to do with the tittle-tattle behind the scenes? And is there any truth
in the Topaz/Luca affair story? Let's see if we can't ferret out the truth
behind the rumour, before we get down to some hardcore Christmas rock and
roll! Now, before the show this evening, I was approached by both parties,
each wanting to give their side of things live on national television! So,
you'll hear it here first! Later we'll hear from Jewel's Canadian frontwoman,
Topaz, but first, please give a huge hand to Luca Ranieri, from Diablo!"
There was a rousing reception from the crowd, as a slightly uncomfortable
Luca made his way out onto the dais to take the other empty seat. In a
way he was glad that Connie had been unanimously selected to host the Christmas
special, for she was a fairly sympathetic interviewer, but he had decided
that the record must be put straight. The fact that he had spent an unfortunate
half an hour in Rory's office to the same end had further convinced him,
and before the show he had spoken to the producers, who had promised him
a live slot.
But, for Diablo's PR man, Luca was looking decidedly hot under the collar.
"Well, Luca, thanks for talking to us, first of all." Connie sent him
a grin. "Tell us, this must be a bit of a novel experience for you, being
at the centre of such a hyped up scandal."
"It's not a pleasant experience." Luca began slowly. "I want to make
something very clear, though. There is...no relationship brewing between
Topaz and myself. The tabloid press have...settled on rumours, I don't know
where from, that there is some kind of romantic attraction between us, but
it's not true. Topaz has someone who she cares very deeply about, and myself,
well, I like Topaz a lot, but only as a friend."
"So there is no truth in the rumour that the two of you...got things
together?" Connie could sense the disappointment rippling through the crowd
at this simple denial. Luca frowned.
"I'm not a liar." He said evenly. "And I'm not going to pretend it didn't
happen when every man and his dog knows it did. But it was a one off...an
isolated incident. Both Topaz and I are agreed that it happened under exceptional
circumstances and should never happen again."
"Well, let's hear it from the girl herself." Connie suggested. "Ladies
and Gentlemen, it's Topaz!"
Luca looked visibly startled at the thought of facing the singer in front
of such a big audience, but Topaz appeared completely composed, taking
her seat with a small smile at the host. There were one or two whistles
and jeers from the crowd, but she ignored them.
This was more important, after all.
"Topaz, what have you to say about this whole business?" Connie asked.
"Nothing much." The singer spoke in soft tones. "Except to echo what
Luca's already said. We're friends, but that's as far as it goes between
us." She frowned. "In any case, as he mentioned, there's someone else who
means the world to me. The press have done their best to split us up this
Christmas, with one thing or another, and I hope they're satisfied that
they succeeded. Had...had he and I not been broken up, there is no question
that Luca and I would have even spoken to each other. The fact of the matter
is, though, that broken up or not I made a...a huge mistake. I underestimated
the one man I really love, and I've paid for it by losing him." She bit
her lip. "I can't say any more, Connie. Only...well, I'd like to dedicate
tonight's performance to him. Even if he can no longer love me...I want
him to know I'm never going to stop loving him."
Her voice wavered on the last note and, seeing it, Connie took the show
to a commercial break. As Jewel set up their instruments to play their opening
song in the round robin format the directors had set out, Sylva squeezed
Topaz by the hand.
"Nicely done." She murmured. Topaz shrugged.
"I just hope he's watching." she replied. "I can't see any reason why
he would be, after last night."
"He'll watch." Sylva responded. "Trust me."
Sylva was right.
In Aaron's front room, alone and surrounded by belongings strewn every
which way in a half hearted attempt at packing, Cameron had found himself
drawn to the television set.
"Jus' torturin' yourself, mate." He muttered, nevertheless sitting down
and turning the channels over till he saw Connie's smiling face. "Why you
want to watch her? The girl cheated on ya! What are you, a bloody sadist
As Connie announced first Luca, then Topaz, the redhead sat motionless,
intent on the screen and on every word being spoken. Despite himself, his
heart ached. He knew he loved her, regardless.
"But I can't 'ave a long distance relationship with someone who'll jump
into bed with some git like...well...'im at the drop of an' 'at."
He murmured darkly, jabbing the handset viciously in the direction of the
hapless Luca. "No matter how bad the fight or what it's consequences!"
At that moment, Jewel's first song began, and before Nancy played the
opening chords, Topaz took the mic from it's stand.
"I don't need to say a name, he knows who he is." She said softly, her
blue eyes wet with tears. "The first time we met, we played this song...so
I asked the girls if we could play it again today. It's not quite the same
way, we've no acoustic guitar or regular piano...but I hope it'll mean
something, just the same. This...this is Any Other Way."
As the song began to play, Cameron felt a lump forming in his own throat
and, despite his anger and hurt, he remembered only too well how special
that first meeting had been.
"Love at first sight." He whispered. "That's what it was. Dammit, Rora,
'ow could you do this to me!"
He got to his feet, pacing the room. Finally, he could bear it no longer
and, grabbing his coat from one of the messy piles he slipped his feet
into his shoes, hurrying out of the apartment and down the three flights
of stairs to the door, jumping into the hire car and putting it in gear.
He only had a vague idea where he was going, but that didn't seem to matter.
All he knew was that he had to speak to her.
By the time he arrived at the studio, Jewel's song was finished and the
girls were once more backstage. As he slipped the attention of a wayward
security guard, he caught Copper's eye and the drummer gasped, grabbing Topaz
by the arm.
Topaz turned, startled. Then, as she met his gaze, she blushed scarlet.
"Did you come here to see me?" She asked softly, barely hoping for a
"I came to talk." Cameron said evenly. "Can we?"
"Yes...I have a while." Topaz nodded quickly. "Over here. Girls...I'll
meet you in the dressing room, huh?"
"Sure." Nancy grinned at her.
"Good luck." Sylva added, then they were gone, leaving the two alone.
"It's been a bloody miserable Christmas." Cameron observed. "Do you s'pose
if we were together all the time we'd always fight like this?"
"I don't know." Topaz admitted. "All I know is that I love you and I'm
so so sorry. I really am. I know it's unforgiveable, but..."
"Nothing is going to make me stop loving you." Cameron frowned. "I realised
that just now, seeing you on television an' watchin' you play. But Rora..."
He sighed. "Love can't make a relationship work on it's own."
Tears pricked once more at the back of Topaz's eyes.
"I know." She whispered. "You...deserve better than me, anyway."
Cameron pursed his lips.
"I ain't given up on you yet." He admitted. "If I 'ad, I wouldn't 'ave
come. But listen, Rora. This ain't gonna work...not 'ere an' now. Too much
'as 'appened over the last week or two...it's too much to deal with. I need...I
"All right..." Topaz paused, slightly unsure as to where this was going.
"I want a break." Cameron said. "I think...we need to cool it, Rora.
Quit bein' anythin' but friends for a while, see 'ow it takes us. See other
"Listen...if we come back together, all well an' good." Cameron held
up his hand to silence her. "And if we don't, it weren't meant. You 'ave
to understand, Rora, I need to rebuild some trust in you."
"I understand." She murmured. "And if that's what you want, then all
right. I...I'd rather have you as a friend than not at all. But Cameron,
there won't be anyone else. I learnt that lesson...it's not the same. I'm
in love with you...noone else."
"Well, Sylva called me this mornin' and bullied me till I promised to
come out to America for 'er twenty first birthday party in April." Cameron
looked slightly sheepish. "She even said she was buyin' the plane ticket.
So...we'll see then, huh? We'll see how we stand in April."
"Okay." Topaz managed a faint smile at Sylva's machinations. "She's a
good friend to me, you know."
"Yeah...I think she is." Cameron agreed. "You should listen to her more
"I know." Topaz admitted. She frowned, glancing at her watch. "I'm sorry,
I have to go. Will...will I see you tomorrow?"
"I don't know, yet." Cameron admitted. "But if not, Merry Christmas,
"You too." Topaz whispered. Then she was gone across the studio to rejoin
her bandmates, aware that he was watching her until she was out of his
sight. As she reached the door, she smiled.
"Perhaps there's hope yet." She murmured. "And either way, if Syl can
get into Christmas and enjoy it, feeling how she does about Jack, then so
can I. Cameron and I...well, we'll see where it goes. But for now, I'm just
gonna sing with Jewel and worry about having a Merry Christmas!"
Chapter One: Twilight
Chapter Two: Diablo's Place
Chapter Three: A Shopping Encounter
Chapter Four: Some New Acquaintances
Chapter Five: A Girl In Love
Chapter Six: Topaz's Advice
Chapter Seven: A Professional Saboteur
Chapter Eight: Melanie
Chapter Nine: A Lover's Tiff
Chapter Ten: Sylva's Decision
Chapter Eleven: One Night At Le Klub Kool
Chapter Twelve: The Morning After
Chapter Thirteen: Stefana Again
Chapter Fourteen: Luca Confesses
Chapter Fifteen: A Christmas Party
Chapter Sixteen: Repercussions
Chapter Seventeen: Christmas Eve on TV
DISCLAIMER: PLEASE NOTE
Copper, Nancy, Sylva, Anna, Blade, Raesha, Sirena, Topaz, Aaron, Sophie,
Justin, Elliot, Rosita Madeleine, Marissa, Luca, Stefana, Clay, Luis and
any other characters in this fiction which do not appear in the animated
Jem series are copyrighted to me (E.A Woolley) as of January 2002 <unless
otherwise specified> and are not to be reproduced without permission ANYWHERE.
Jetta, Pizzazz, Stormer, Roxy, Raya and all other original Jem characters
are the copyright of Hasbro Inc, Sunbow, Christy Marx and the other writers
of the Jem series. The future world of Pizzazz, Raya, Jetta, Roxy, Stormer,
Clash, Synergy, the fate of Jem and her memorial are all copyrighted to me.
The future world of Kimber and Shana is copyrighted jointly to myself and
The concept of 'Jewel' is entirely my own, and any apparent link with
any fictional or actual person or persons of this name is entirely coincidental.
Equally the characters in this fiction are not based on any real life individual.
The concept behind the future world of Danse, Aja and Craig, the idea
behind Jerrica's futureworld and the split of the Holograms is copyrighted
to Gemma Dawn, whose Teenangel Outsiders fiction is directly twinned with
Just a Dream. The character Sammi and any of the other Teenangel Outsider
characters mentioned in this fiction are entirely copyright to Gemma Dawn
and appear here only with her permission.
Pay her page a visit!
The concept of RayzaBlade is copyrighted to my sister Elena...^_^
(Yeah, blame her!)