A Missed Step and A Boost In Confidence

(Joint post with Redsword)

Courtney had really enjoyed all the performances, so, far but Matt's would always hold a special place for her. She noticed Conner practically drooling over Kaylee's outfit and she had to wonder if Matt had also noticed. What JD had done for Rose had been very classy and sweet and a part of had to wonder what the rich kids thought of that gesture as she didn't any of them doing anything similar. As the theater kids started another skit in between acts Kaylee and Matt both slipped into two of the dressing rooms to get ready for their next performance, which would come later, with Roxy.

The skit ended and the set with the bar and the tables was moved out onto the stage. Courtney took her place, curtain lifted, and music to The Other Side started. As she easily moved across the floor, making her way through the choreography there were a few cheers during the routine for some of the harder moves. Conner and JD were doing a great job and she was pretty sure of two things, that she was glad she agreed to this and that Coach Callahan seemed to be paying close attention to her. The woman was always looking to recruit people for the cheerleading team; something Courtney had no time for and while she could appreciate the athleticism of the cheerleaders, it just wasn't something she was interested in.

As the song went as JD jumped onto the bar he did a few quick dance steps that he was taught by the others. He missed stepped Conner's eyes widen as he knew if JD did not compensate quickly he was going to fall off the bar. Conner slid to the side to catch JD if needed. As he stopped he saw a grin on JD's face. JD tried his best to stay with the beat. JD kicked out one of his legs to counter his balance. twisting to the side he bent over grabbing the edge of the bar with his hands. Thrusting his feet up into the air going into a handstand. facing the crowd and Conner. JD dropped some then pushed off with everything he had allowing him to do a flip over Conner landing on his feet. Conner moved to another position so they could pick back up the dancing. Conner had a big smile on his face as people applauded. Only the people that help with the choreography knew how close he was to falling off the bar and hitting the floor all the teachers could do was shake their heads at what he did. His singing was a little off from being winded from his acrobatics. JD was happy he just did not do a face plant on the floor of the stage.

When JD jumped onto the bar; it was all fine until JD missed the step. It wasn't excately at a place where there was room for error and Courtney who was back behind the bar by this time could really only watch. She noticed Conner moving into place in case JD fell but then JD saved himself in a way that could only be described as epic. The thing was only Courtney , Conner and JD knew that. Still it the move was met with applause and a few cheers, apparently, the audience loved it. Courtney smiled and then got back into character. The dance picked back up and then ended to a loud applause.

Meanwhile. Melissa had watched all the acts in a kind of awe and getting more nervous by the minute. How could she ever follow all of that? She didn't know JD had messed up but the whole thing was very impressive. She felt her stomach turn and closed her eyes briefly, attempting to take a deep breath. Was it too late to back out?

She applauded at the end of Courtney, Conner and JD's act. Waited for the set to be moved off the stage, the theater kids to do another skit and the piano and drums to be put on stage before she walked on stage. The curtain was still drawn and no one could see her and Conner, she just stood there for a moment looking at the piano, wondering if she could go through with this.

Conner seeing Mel's apprehension thought for a moment then walk up behind her speaking softly signaling the stage crew to hold. "This is about you, not anyone else. You can do this. It's just you and the crowd. Show them how you are. Show them what you can do. make them wish they had more. You are in control and I am here and will follow you. don't focus on anyone person just look over the crowd and you can do it." He said trying to give her some confidence.

Melissa took a breath and said. "OK." She still wasn't completely sure about this but really she just needed to do it and get it over with. She got to her spot behind the piano and waited for Conner to get to his position behind the drums and then she said "I'm ready." Once Conner was set the curtain opened and she stared playing. She could see the crowd but avoided looking directly at anyone and definitely avoided eye contact with one person in particular. Conner sang the first part and then it got to her part in the song and the words and music flowed from her, surprisingly, effortlessly. Their duet of Rewrite The Stars was met with a loud applause and Melissa smiled.

Conner stands up from his seat at the drums with a big smile. He throws both of his drum sticks out into the crowd one at a time. then motions to Mel one more time putting her in the spotlight making her the center of attention. "ladies and gentlemen, Melissa!" and he starts clapping. then Conner sits getting ready for the next song.

Melissa hadn't expected Conner to do that but still she smiled at him and took the applause smiling at the audience. She gave Conner the signal she was ready for the second number, Love Song, and once it was set her fingers made their way easily across the keys and her voice rang out the song. She actually liked, no she loved this feeling, her apprehension had given way to something else, a feeling that she'd do this again in a minute. The second song ended to more applause. She motioned to Conner to let him her his applause. Apparently, people really liked it. She hadn't not only not screwed this up but she had done really well.(edited)

Conner stands again clapping for Melissa he had one more to go before he was done playing with Roxy would be next it was almost over be for the ending for him then what would he do there was Blossom and Kaylee how could he divide his time between them Conner wondered if he should just give up and make a decision before someone got hurt.

Backstage Kaylee was watching this performance. Melissa was really good but she was more focused on Conner and enjoying watching him perform. She was actually glad she had gotten to not only see him perform but performed with him.

Courtney had also watched and was surprised that she has no idea Melissa was so talented. She noticed that Conner seemed to be trying to boost Mel's confidence and that was a good thing.

In the audience Doug watched all of this with a rage slowly building inside of him. He was mad that Melissa hadn't told him about the duet. He was mad that she had performed with Conner which meant she has spent all afternoon with him. And he was mad that the spotlight was on her. She was good but it would have been better for Doug if she had fallen on her face. Anything that built her confidence wasn't good for him. He clenched and unclenched his fists a few times. He couldn't do anything, for the moment, but wait the show would be over soon enough.

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