Live In Fifteen

Prologue: Does the Red Light Mean We're Live?

"The better you know someone, the less there is to say.

Or maybe, there's less that needs to be said."

- Unknown

"We go live in one minute," a voice called out above all the others from somewhere in the studio and my heartbeat sped up. Conversations faltered as everyone took their place and looked over the rundown for the half an hour. We'd either get it right the first time or, well, it was live TV, there was no other chance.

"Forty-five seconds," the floor manager yelled. We were forty-seconds away from going live all across Denson County, which meant about my face was going to be seen in about 800,000 households.

I guess now would be a good time to mention that I was completely insane. I'm the usually type of person who runs away from the spotlight, yet here I was, under bright lights with three cameras pointed at me, and less then forty-five seconds away from going live. What the hell was I thinking?

Try to forget the fact I want to be a journalist and this was a good opportunity to get footage for my resume tape. Also forget that it's only 4 PM so everyone is still on their way home from work. Also forget that I've been through this process hundreds of times already. So yeah – forgetting all that, it was perfectly clear as to why I was nervous.

I have always been a huge fan of rehearsing, I loved retakes and the ability to have options, but unfortunately, live television doesn't cater to those needs. Once it is over, it is over. If it didn't go the way you wanted, you'd just have to do better then next time. If you were allowed a next time that is.

"Thirty seconds," he shouted, slowly glancing around the studio to make sure everyone was in the right place. Sure, it was easy for him to be calm; he wasn't the one being telecasted into thousands of homes. He wasn't the person everyone would laugh at if I mispronounced the word probably or mischievous.

I think that now might be a good time to mention my fear of doing anything spontaneous. I need to think things through, weigh each and every option, even the illogical ones, before finally settling on a solution. Everything must make sense before I take action.

You should have seen my pro/con list before deciding to take this gig – it was a mess.

Maybe a career in broadcast journalism wasn't a good idea.

"Fifteen seconds."

I closed my eyes and took a deep breath, although, from experience, I knew it wouldn't help. Only one thing could.

As I exhaled, the person next to me leaned over and gently squeezed my hand. I always found it funny how one simple gesture could change a person's state of mind, especially one as small as this. I opened my eyes and offered a meek smile to the brown-headed boy next to me on my right. It wasn't a surprise that after seventeen years of friendship, he had some idea of how to keep my emotion in check.

"Alright folks, let's have a good show" the show's director, Kyle Ashford, cheerfully exclaimed through our earpieces. "And we are live in five, four, three, two, one, take camera 2 with graphic, open mics, and cue talent."

Deep breathe.

"Good evening everyone and welcome to WHNQ Nightcast. I'm Dan Johnson."

"And I'm Kate Cullen. Breaking news out of the capital today."

Wow. Talk about a blast from the past. I'm sure a lot of you might be a tad confused by this story so let me take a minute to explain. This was the first story I ever wrote. To this date, it had been the only story I ever finished. About two years ago, I reread parts and I could not believe how awful it was (I am a horrible critic for myself) so, mostly out of embarrassment, I decided to take the story down with the hopes of reediting it. In a moment of stupidity, I decided to change all of my characters names and repost the prologue with my new intensions to revise the story and change the wording of everything so it flowed better. Then I got caught up in life and other stories and never got past revising the first chapter.

Years pass.

Cut to present day when the story popped into my head. See, I've been having issues lately with sticking with one story and developing it fully so today I decided to open up the Live in Fifteen file. I started looking at it and once again, got the weird urge to make some edits, and next thing I know, I'm about ten pages into the story, basically rewritting everything with a more practiced and knowledgeable pen.

Now, I am not promising anything, but I really tempted to see what I can do with this story. I know I have said it with all my other stories, but I think that maybe if I look at this story and start working on it's plot, it will remind me what's it is like to actually finish a story, and maybe give me the kick I need to finish my other stories. I'll either repost it slowly or very quickly, depending on if I stay solely focused on these characters or if I jump between stories once again.

I'd be shocked if anyone really remembers this story, although I'm happy to report that I changed that names back to Kate and Danny. I probably changed their last names, and I know I changed the names of most of the minor characters, but I only did it to save myself some confusion (I used those names in another story and I didn't want to confuse myself anymore).

So yea, for those of you who were once fans of this story, I hope the changes do it justice. For the most part, everything is going to remind the same, but I'm hoping to add a whole lot into it to make it more interesting.

For those who are new but are familiar with my work, I'm sorry I keep jumping ship between all my stories but at least I'm trying to provide you with some entertainment right?

And lastly, for those who are entirely new to this story and my work, please feel free to take a look at my other work. All are currently in progress (minus Hiding Beneath the Lights).

Feel free to drop me a line anytime about anything.



ps...I need to think of a new summary before I can post chapter 1 so if anyone has any ideas, let me know.