Arc Three: When Life Goes On...
Part Two

Chapter Seven: Cameron

"Excuse me, but when is the flight from London Heathrow due to arrive?"
Topaz cast the man behind the information desk a smile, tucking a lock of gold hair behind her ear. Inwardly her nerves were racing and her stomach jumping at the thought of seeing Cameron again, but she kept her cool, waiting patiently as the man checked through the list of incoming flights.
"It's running ten minutes late, miss." He told her with a smile. "Should be here in five - you expecting someone off it?"
"Yes. An important friend." Topaz nodded. "Thanks. Five minutes? Okay."
She moved away from the desk, glancing up once more at the big arrivals board, and biting her lip.
"I hope this is going to work out." She muttered. "I wish I hadn't chosen this morning to feel like crap, too. I suppose it's partly nerves as much as anything else, but I hope he doesn't notice I'm pale. He's a medical student, so he just might."
She made her way slowly to the waiting area, sitting down on an empty seat and trying her best to make herself comfortable till the flight was called. A shriek caught her attention, as an excited teenager spotted her from across the arrivals bay and she cast them a smile, her mind elsewhere.
"Topaz, can I have your autograph?" the teenager seemed to have summoned all her courage to approach the singer, and Topaz was a little taken aback by the adoration in the girl's grey-green eyes. She nodded her head, this time offering a warm, genuine smile.
"Of course." She agreed. "Are you here waiting for family?"
"My Dad's flying back from Venezuela. He's doing scientific research out there - we haven't seen him for six months." The girl admitted. "I miss him a whole lot, but he'll be here in less than twenty minutes now!"
"That's awesome." Topaz gently took the proffered leaflet and pen, looping her name across it, then pausing. "What's your name, by the way?"
"BethAnn." The girl dimpled. "Ooh, my friends are gonna be so mad that I met a Jewel and they weren't even there!"
"There." Carefully Topaz penned a brief message, then, "I'm glad to know we've fans here in L.A!"
"We all love Jewel." BethAnn agreed, taking the leaflet and pen back reverently and pocketing it. "But you're my favourite. You sing amazingly. I went to the concert you did with the Misfits and the Holograms and it was just the best thing ever! Mom took me, because it was my birthday and I wanted to go - you sing even better live!"
"Thanks for the compliment!" Topaz blushed at this. "I'm glad you enjoyed the show. Playing with the Misfits, Holograms and Stingers was an unforgettable experience - we all loved doing it."
"My Mom is a big Misfit and Hologram fan." BethAnn laughed. "So she was happy to come along too! She likes that slow song you guys do too - Whisper."
"Yeah, that's one of my favourites, too." Topaz nodded.
At that moment, a third voice interrupted the conversation and, startled, Topaz glanced up, seeing Cameron himself waving from across the arrivals lounge, his suitcase in the other hand.
"I'm really sorry, BethAnn, but I have to go." She cast an apologetic smile at the teenager. "That's my friend, he's here for the wedding we're hosting at home, and there's so much to do."
"Oh, it's fine, really, I understand." BethAnn assured her quickly. "Thanks for signing my leaflet and being so nice and everything. People at school say famous people don't talk to normal people but it's not true. You're really nice, I'm gonna make sure everyone knows it!"
With that the girl was gone across the lounge, back towards her mother, and Topaz got to her feet, smoothing her skirt and heading across to greet her boyfriend, butterflies in her stomach. Cameron cast her a smile.
"Hi, you." He murmured, putting his free arm around her and hugging her tightly. "I've missed you like you wouldn't believe."
"It's mutual, believe me." Topaz told him softly. "Everything's building up for the wedding...I'm glad you're here."
"You look kinda pale, are you all right?" Cameron looked concerned.
"Yeah. Vi's hen night was last night, that's all." Topaz smiled, though there was a hint of nervousness in her eyes. He didn't notice, however, merely laughing.
"Ah, okay, I see." He said, winking knowingly. "Well, me blinkin' exams are all out of the way and I'm back in Los Angeles at long last - what time is it here? My brain clock is all out."
"Nearly eleven." Topaz glanced up at the big airport clock.
"Is it too early for lunch? I'm not jetlagged yet."
Topaz swallowed hard, feeling sick inside.
"It is, rather." She admitted. "But we can drive out to the beach if you like, and you can catch some California sun and sand?"
"Sounds good to me, so long as you're comin' along." Cameron grinned, kissing her on the cheek. "Let's go, huh? Lead the way!"
Topaz slipped her hand in his, heading across the big airport to the double doors and out into the parking lot, where her own vehicle was parked. She unlocked it, slipping into the driver's seat and reaching over to release the catch on the opposite side.
"How was your flight?" She asked. Cameron shrugged, dumping his case on the back seat, and getting in beside her, pulling the door shut.
"Borin'." He admitted. "I'm not the biggest fan of transatlantic flyin', and they never play the best movies in the world. Still, I'm 'ere now an' it wasn't like it was bumpy or rough. Pretty okay, all in all."
"You get used to flying places all the time, trust me." Topaz told him. She paused, then, "Cameron?"
"With Violet's wedding and everything - do you ever stop to think about the future?"
"Yeah, sometimes." Cameron looked startled. "Why do you ask?"
"I dunno." Topaz admitted. "It's just, well, exchanging vows is such a big deal commitment. It made me think a little about things."
"We live so far apart really, don't we?" Cameron sighed. "It's hard to have a proper relationship that way. I'm sorry, Rora."
"It's fine." Topaz dismissed it with a wave of her hand, flicking the indicator and pulling the car out of the carpark. "We both have busy lives and well, it makes it special to see you, you know?" She smiled. "Besides, if we lived in each other's pockets, maybe we'd hate each other."
"Maybe." Cameron pursed his lips. "But I can't imagine it. Can you?"
"No." Topaz acknowledged. "Do you think Taylor's nervous? I know Vi is."
"Well, 'e wouldn't be 'uman if 'e weren't, and I've been teasin' 'im as 'ard as I can go." Cameron laughed. "Oh, 'e'll be okay on the day, Rora. 'E loves Violet and that's what matters. They'll be fine."
"I think they will too." Topaz nodded. "You're stopping with him at the Teenangel place, right?"
"Yep. Aaron seems...a little..out of it at the moment, I didn't want to impose on him and it seemed logical to stop with the groom, bein' best man an' all that." Cameron agreed. "What's up with 'im, Rora? Somethin' 'appen?"
"Nothing since he got turned down by Copper. It's still the same thing - he hasn't gotten over it yet." Topaz responded. "Poor guy. Copper's hurting too, mind you. It's a messy situation and I want to fix it, but I really don't see how I can."
"Well, when you interfere in stuff, it's more likely to make it messy." Cameron observed philosophically. "Maybe I'll give 'im a call, mind you, get 'im out of 'is flat an' back with the livin'. Hey, this car 'ave 'air conditionin'? I'm swelterin' here!"
"Sorry." Topaz reached over to turn a dial. "I forgot you weren't used to Californian weather. It's not so hot today really."
"Well, it is for me." Cameron grinned. He cast her a sidelong glance, then, "Say, are you really okay, Rora? You're actin' kinda preoccupied."
"Huh?" Topaz looked startled, then she blushed.
"I'm sorry." She said sheepishly. "I'm not feeling wonderful today, if you must know."
"It must've been a 'ell of a night last night then." Cameron looked amused. Topaz nodded.
"I didn't get a lot of sleep." She owned. "I'll be all right, don't worry."
"All right, if you say so." Cameron smiled. "Of course, if you feel you need examinin' by a trainee doctor..." He raised an eyebrow suggestively, and despite herself, Topaz laughed.
"I'm sure there will be time for that." She agreed, almost without thinking. "And here we are, at the beach. Time to get your shoes off, Cameron - we're going paddling!"


"Okay, that's enough for that shot."
Zoe held up her hands, casting a grin at the stage hands who immediately flurried onto the set to change it. "Mr Llewelyn, how much more do you want done today? I mean, I've no plans for tonight, but we're running over to six o'clock as it is, and I think Diablo are starting to get tired."
"We need the video ready as soon as humanly possible." Rory glanced across at her. "Since you were so unable to work the other day, we rather have a tight schedule."
"My apologies." Zoe blushed slightly. "Everything got a bit out of hand and my own schedule was messed about. It's fine now, though, and I don't mind staying, if Diablo don't mind."
"We've been here since half seven this morning!" Stefana rolled her eyes, tossing herself down on the edge of the dais and lighting a cigarette. "Can't we at least take five?"
"Sure, we've the set to sort out too." Zoe nodded at her. "If you guys wanna head out for five or ten minutes, we'll have the next shot set up here ready for when you get back. We'll work as quick as we can, Stefana, I promise -I'm sorry to keep you over."
"Well, if it gets us a hit, who cares?" Clay, Diablo's British born drummer shrugged, twirling his sticks. "It's cool with us, Zoe. We'll stop here till midnight if it takes that long to get it right."
"No we damn well won't." Stefana glowered at him. "I'm going outside and I'm not coming back in till this set is ready." She glared at Zoe. "If you'd bother to keep your engagements, we wouldn't be here now!"
With that she flounced off, banging the door behind her.
Marissa slipped down off the edge of the dais.
"It's okay, Zoe, she's just spouting off." She assured the video artist. Zoe looked rueful, shaking her head.
"No, it's my fault." She responded. "I let things get on top of me and I let you folk down, so I deserve a bit of flack from Stefana. I don't think we've a whole lot more to do, anyway. It's coming together nicely and then I'll take the tape away and splice it up as soon as I can. It's not like I have anything much penned in my diary between now and Violet's wedding."
"I've heard about that. It's a big deal occasion, isn't it?" Marissa looked thoughtful. Zoe nodded.
"Got a hot date?"
"Well, my cousin is taking me, but I'm told he's hot." Zoe looked rueful. "I haven't really noticed. I'm afraid I was working too much to get anyone else."
"Ah well." Marissa laughed. "You'll have a blast anyway, no doubt."
"I hope so." Zoe nodded. She gestured towards the door. "You don't have to stick around, by the way. I have to chivvy the set engineers, and I'm sure you have enough to do."
"I'm gonna head down to the cafeteria and find a bite to eat. It won't do anyone any good if I have a diabetic fit in the middle of filming." Marissa dimpled. "I'll catch you soon, okay?"
"Sure. We won't film anything till you're all back and through makeup and costume anyway." Zoe assured her.
She perched herself on the edge of the dais, relaying some instructions to the set engineers, then glancing down at her own notes, carefully marking off the things that she had already covered.
"Not many scenes left." She murmured. "And it's kinda good to get the distraction. I feel bad, though, about keeping them here late. I know Stefana is a brat most days to work with, but in this case, she's right. I've never let my personal life interfere in my work before. Maybe I should just stop this, before it gets really out of hand. I'm not sleeping right, I'm not getting my calls answered properly and I'm getting stood up. I don't know."
"Miss Montgomery?"
One of the stage hands jumped down from the set, her mobile phone in his hand. "Your phone's ringing - I thought it might be important."
"Oh!" Zoe flashed the worker a smile, taking the phone from him and hitting the receive button, putting it to her ear. "Hello?"
"Hi, Zoe. It's me."
The voice was all too familiar, and Zoe frowned.
"I'm kinda working." She said slowly. "I can't talk now, can you call me back later?"
"I could, but what I have to say won't take long." Came the reply. "I guess I'm sorry I blew you off before...I didn't mean to. Things aren't so easy right now. I have a problem with someone and she won't get off my case."
"She?" Zoe raised an eyebrow. "Who? Please tell me you don't have another woman on the go!"
"Don't be daft, I hate the bitch!" Came the response. "But she's kinda got me over a barrel at the moment. I'll explain when we meet - when you understand you'll realise why I've been so off with you."
"Mm..." Zoe said cautiously. "You've stood me up twice. What am I supposed to think?"
"Third time lucky?" The voice asked. "Look, can you meet me tonight? I.."
"I don't know. I'm at Flash Studios, I'm working with Diablo on their new video and it might take all night. Mr Llewelyn is keen to get it finished - we're just taking a break whilst the set people rearrange things."
"When, then?"
"Look, come by my apartment, okay?" Zoe cast a glance across at Rory, who was busy with his paperwork. "Tomorrow morning, if you can get away. We'll talk there - it's nice and quiet."
"What if someone sees me?"
"Noone will. Look, if you really want to sort this out with me..."
"Okay, okay, I'll be there." The voice sounded impatient. "I guess I'll speak to you tomorrow, then. Bye, Zo."
"Bye." Zoe murmured, as she heard the dial tone in her ear. She bit her lip.
"I wish you knew how much it hurts me that you never tell me you love me." She thought, slipping the phone into her bag. "Do you love me? Am I just wasting my time? Oh, I wish I knew what to think...I know it's a big jump to make, to commit to me and everything else...I realise you have a lot to lose, and so do I. But...oh, enough of this. I have a video to produce and it's not gonna be done by me moping."
She got to her feet, turning to examine the stage, then clambering up to check all of the changes. For now, Diablo's video was all that mattered. Anything else could wait.

Chapter One: The Truth About Copper
Chapter Two: Topaz Interferes
Chapter Three: Stefana Discovers
Chapter Four: A Devil At Work
Chapter Five: Dilemmas
Chapter Six: Hen Night
Chapter Seven: Cameron
Chapter Eight: A Firm Resolve
Chapter Nine: Aaron...and Copper
Chapter Ten: Schemes
Chapter Eleven: A Missing Groom

Chapter Twelve: Nancy's Hunt
Chapter Thirteen: Zoe's Revelation

Copper, Nancy, Sylva, Anna, Blade, Raesha, Sirena, Topaz, Aaron, Sophie, Justin, Elliot, Rosita, 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 Gemma Dawn.
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!