I'm so sorry that it's been so long since an update... I'm going to go the safe route and blame it on school... -cough-
Okay, so maybe I've been a little lazy myself, but...oh well. XD"

Oh! And I celebrated my birthday on November 30th. =3 I'm old enough to go do adult-y things. Like buy lottery tickets! =D

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The door swung open just the slightest under her palm. She watched as the light-haired girl leaned back against the wall, eyes closed and a smile on her face. Mix-style headphones rested around her ears, the very ones she herself had bought the light-haired girl last Christmas.

A small smile hovered around the dark-haired girl's mouth.

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Chapter Twenty-eight

Picture Perfect

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"Are we there yet?"

Matt sighed at the singer's whine. He wasn't sure if she was making a joke or not… "Almost. Have some patience."

"Sorry, but I'm allergic." Aislinn grinned at him widely.

Matt gave her an amused smirk. "Allergic?"

Aislinn nodded seriously. "First my cheeks swell up like this." She puffed out her cheeks. "Then I start fidgeting." She bounced on her seat a little.

"And then you drive me absolutely crazy?" Matt suggested.

She grinned. "Is it working?"

He chuckled. "It's been working for three years, dear."

Her grin grew and she slowly reached out and poked his arm. "Are we there yet?" She poked him again. "Are we there yet?"

He laughed and grabbed her fingers. "Okay, okay, stop! We're almost there! We only have a block left."

She stuck out her tongue with a smile and twisted their hands so that their fingers interlaced.

"There it is," Matt said quietly, stopping the car and parking by the sidewalk.

Aislinn's eyes grew wide. "That's where I'm shooting?!?"

"The very same."

They had stopped at an ancient Victorian house that jutted up from amongst the modern homes that surrounded it. The white paint on its wooden planks was peeling, while the wraparound porch looked in dire need of renovation. The glass in the window panes was smashed in some areas, and the doors were two seconds away from falling off.

"OH. MY. GOD." Aislinn jumped out of the car, slamming the door behind her as she landed on the sidewalk. "This is amazing!" she squealed, clasping her hands together in astonishment.

Matt came around the car and handed her the camera she had bought the month before. She about snatched the camera from him and ran towards the house.

Aislinn ran into the house to find Jade lounging in an antique chair with claw feet.

"Oh, Aislinn, you made it. Good." The model smiled gracefully. She chuckled. "How do you like the house?"

Aislinn squealed to show her appreciation.

Jade chuckled again. "That's what I thought."

"Do I hear my favorite singer?" A pale, lithe woman came into the room from the wide, open doorway on the far side of the room. Her almost-white blonde hair hung in ultra-straight layers around her pretty face. The woman wore simple black skinny jeans and a tight white long-sleeved shirt.

"Felicia!" Aislinn launched herself at the model and hugged her tightly. "I haven't seen you since January!"

The lithe blonde laughed and squeezed Aislinn back. "I know, I'm so sorry. I had to go to South Korea, you know."

Aislinn pulled back and gasped. "Oh yeah! Did you bring me a pressie?"

Felicia smiled. "Aislinn, do you really think I would go somewhere and not bring you something?"

Aislinn's face perked up immensely. "What is it, what is it?!?"

Felicia chuckled and reached through the open doorway to bring back a plastic grocery bag. "Happy Photoshoot."

Aislinn took the bag gleefully and pulled out a shoebox. "Dude! I've been needing new shoes!"

"Oh God, not more shoes."

The women in the room looked up.

"Matt!" Jade said. "I haven't seen you in forever." She jumped up to give the guitarist a hug.

"Yeah, and you with all the time in the world," Matt said with a chuckle, knowing the model had just came back from a show in Europe.

Jade gave him an amused smirk and punched his arm lightly. "Don't be jealous, now."

"I try not to be, dear." He grinned at her again before embracing Felicia, who had joined them. "I haven't seen you even longer."

"It was so hard to stay away." Felicia grinned as well.

"DUDE! SECHUNA BOOTS!!!"

The trio by the door glanced back at the blonde singer, who was holding up a pair of boots.

"How do you like them?" Felicia asked.

Aislinn stared at her. "Like them? Like them?!? FELICIA, I NEED TO HAVE YOUR BABIES."

Felicia chuckled. "I think that's biologically impossible, dear."

Aislinn's eyes narrowed. "We will make it happen."

Felicia laughed again. "Okay, Miss Bio Scientist, let's check out the rest of the house, eh?"

Aislinn brightened. "Yeah! Of course!"

The house was two stories with a small attic. The inside was filled with antique furniture and old, peeling wallpaper with small, simple flower patterns. The outside was just as old and a small, decaying barn stood in the backyard.

"Oh my God!"

"What's the matter, Aislinn?" Jade ran off the porch to join the singer, Matt and Felicia right behind her.

"There are Dorothy Doors!!!" The teenaged blonde exclaimed and pointed to chipped cellar doors.

"…'Dorothy Doors'?" The model questioned.

Matt sighed. "Yeah…like in The Wizard of Oz?"

"Maybe they should be Doorthys…," Aislinn said thoughtfully.

Matt stared at her. "Boo."

She smacked his arm. "Don't try to bring down my brilliance. You're just jealous."

He rolled his eyes with an amused smirk. "So I've been told all day."

Jade brushed back some hair, completely lost in the bandmates' banter. "Well… Aislinn… So you've seen the place. What do you think? Workable?"

Aislinn stared at her. "Workable? Workable?!? It's perfect! Absolutely astonishing!" Her head snapped towards Matt. "Can I buy it and keep it forever and I'll love it ever so much!"

He stared at her. "Because we're rolling in dough as it is."

Aislinn waved off his comment. "We'll just sell the house and use the money to buy this baby!" She thrust a finger into the air.

"Well, actually," Jade interjected, "this house belongs to my mom, so…"

Aislinn's eyes grew wide and she took Jade's hands in her own. "This means that I get to come and take pictures anytime I want, right?" Her lower lip quivered dramatically.

Jade laughed. "Sure. I'll get you a copy of the key."

Matt stared at her, incredulous. "Are you insane?!? She'll tear the house down!"

Jade laughed again. "No worries, Matt. Aislinn wouldn't do anything to hurt her newfound baby."

Aislinn ran up to the house and hugged the siding. "Of course not. Mama's gonna take real good care of you." She rubbed her cheek on it a little.

"If you get splinters in your cheek, I'm going to laugh at you," Matt warned.

Aislinn stuck her tongue out at him. "My baby would never hurt her mama, would you, Cerise?"

Matt stared at her. "You named it?"

Aislinn patted the wall. "Of course. Her name is Cerise. She's a beaut!" She put her hands on her hips and looked proud.

"Well, don't stop your house loving now, but Pat and Lenore are back," Felicia said calmly.

Aislinn's head slowly turned to take in the shiny sports car pulling into the driveway.

Matt went to Aislinn and patted her shoulder. "Please don't make a fool of yourself," he advised with a solemn nod.

Aislinn stuck her tongue out at him again and ran to catch up to Jade and Felicia, who were walking to met up with the other models.

"Sorry we took so long at the store," the woman climbing out of the passenger side said with an Australian accent. Her hair fell around her face and back in sun-bleached curls. Her gray eyes popped against her tanned skin and she wore black motorcycle boots over gray-wash jeans.

"It's because you have no idea how to drive an American car, Pat. You almost got us killed!" the other woman exclaimed. Her skin was a natural tan tone, set against pin straight black hair and sharp brown eyes. "I told you I should have driven!"

Pat Childs waved her fellow model's comments off and turned her attention to the same group of people standing on the lawn. "Hey, all!" she greeted with an easy smile.

All four of the models exchanged hugs and cheek kisses before Jade turned the attention to the small blonde about to pass out from excitement. "Okay, Pat, Lenore, this is Aislinn and Matt."

"You're the girl from that band Jade and Felicia have been doing nothing but raving about to us," Lenore said with a warm smile and an extended hand. "Lenore Stevens."

Aislinn appeared almost to be set in stone, a wide smile across her face.

Matt sighed. "Aislinn, shake the good woman's hand."

Aislinn snapped out long enough to give him a glare and then took the model's hand. "Aislinn Reynolds," she said, now back to normal.

"I'm Pat Childs," the Australian blonde said with a wide smile. "Nice to meet you."

"Likewise." Aislinn grinned brightly.

"Did you get the items?" Felicia asked the two models after they were done greeting Matt.

"Ah, yeah! They're in the trunk," Lenore said kindly.

"What items?" Aislinn asked, looking curious.

Pat popped the trunk and held up shopping bags from various department stores. "We went shopping for clothes, of course!"

Aislinn looked positively ecstatic.

Matt groaned. "Clothes! Of all the things to bring, you brought clothes!" He put his face in a hand.

"Aislinn has quite a history with clothes," Felicia informed the two newcomers with a knowing nod.

"Oy, is that so? Blimey, but they're a girl's best friend," Pat said with a wide grin.

Aislinn looked at Matt with a big smile. "I like these girls."

Matt groaned into his hands. "God help me…"

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"Ah, Lenore, your head a little more to the left," Aislinn directed from behind her tripod.

The naturally tan model turned her head and Aislinn gave her a thumbs up before snapping off a picture.

The four models all lounged on an old couch together, their legs and arms together. Pat wore a chiffon dress with an eleven button placket and accordion pleated trim. There were ruffles on the lapels and on the short sleeves. The dress itself was a light gray, whereas the lapels and the accordion trim were black.

Felicia was dressed in a short-sleeved silk dress with a pin tucked front and ruffle trimming. On the front was a placket with five buttons and a sash at the scoop neck. The dress was finished at the end with lightly waving ruffles.
Jade was also in a silk dress, but it was sleeveless and had a wide placket with five buttons and ruffle trim. The dress also had two-tiered ruffles on the shoulders. It came in at the waist with a tied ribbon and there were two ruffle-trimmed pockets on the hips.

Lenore's dress was a sleeveless black number with a four button placket trimmed by ruffles. The neck was drawn together by a cloth ribbon.

"Okay, guys, let's move onto the next set!" Aislinn exclaimed with a feverish look in her eyes.

"Okaaay, Miss Photographer, I think it's time you took a break," Matt said, coming into the room from behind Aislinn and encircling his arms around her waist.

Aislinn twisted in his arms and pouted. "But we're just getting to the best part!"

Matt tapped an index finger on her lips. "No 'buts'. You've been working since this morning, and you haven't taken a break yet. Don't you think these nice ladies…" He looked up at them. "Well…these nice ladies and Felicia are getting tired?"

"I'm going to throw my boot at you, Matt," Felicia called.

He just grinned at her before turning his attention back to Aislinn. "You guys haven't even eaten lunch yet. I bet you're starving." He brushed her bangs back a little.

She frowned. "I'm not going to let something as silly as hunger stop me in my quest to create the prettiest pictures evar!"

Matt considered this, looking thoughtful. "Well. I guess you'll just have to let me be the something that stops you." He took her camera gently. "This is confiscated." Aislinn began to protest, but he silenced her with a hand on her arm. "I've made lunch. How about you girls go eat?"

Felicia clasped onto Aislinn playfully. "Oh my, Aislinn! He cooks? I might have to dump you for him!"

Matt smiled. "I'd rather die."

"Oh you!" She punched him in the arm and he laughed, trying to dodge her attacks. The two continued their small fight as the group started into the other room, everyone laughing at their antics.

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"Wahhh! Look at all the stars!" Aislinn exclaimed, kneeling on a cushioned window seat.

"Oh! They're so pretty!" Lenore agreed, climbing onto the seat next to her.

The photoshoot had ended hours ago, but everyone had decided to stay and converse.

"Yeah. You can really see them well around these parts because there aren't many streetlights," Jade said from the left cushion of a couch in the middle of the room. The couch faced an ancient fireplace that barely worked anymore, made out of a dark oak and boasting a great mantle. Small gilded knick-knacks still sat in a line, dust covering them.

Aislinn turned her head back towards the model. "Did you come here a lot as a kid?"

"All the time," Jade said with a small smile. "My mom loves this place."

Aislinn pouted. "You should have told me about it sooner."

"It deserved a good photoshoot," Felicia said, seated next to Jade on the couch. "It wouldn't have been fit for just one model."

"I'm not sure you can call it a good photoshoot if you're in it," Matt quipped from Felicia's other side on the couch before sipping some coffee from a mug.

Felicia smacked his chest with the back of her hand. "Shush, you!" She stuck her tongue out with a grin.

Before any more fighting could occur, Pat walked into the room with a flashlight. "I couldn't find those candles you were talking about, Jade."

The Asian model stood up. "Ah, I can go get them. It's hard to find them if you don't know where they are."

"I'll go with you," Felicia said, her playful spat with Matt forgotten already.

Jade nodded her agreement and the two set out through the double wooden doors, already wide open.

Matt glanced at his cell phone, the artificial light burning bright through the half-darkness of the room. "It's getting a little late, Ais. So we can only stay here for a short while longer."

Aislinn pouted. "Ah, okay."

Lenore touched her arm gently from beside her. "It's okay. Pat and I will give you our phone numbers, and we'll stay in touch."

A bright smile returned to Aislinn's face. "That'd be awesome!"

The dark-haired model reflected her smile and pulled out her own phone. "Give me yours as well, okay?"

Aislinn nodded brightly and reached for her jeans pocket, expecting to feel the hard bulge of her phone. All she felt was smooth denim. Her eyebrows knitted. "That's weird."

Matt frowned a little. "Did you leave it in your purse?"

Aislinn's eyes turned upwards in thought. "Yeah…I think I did!" She jumped to her feet. "It's downstairs. I'll be right back!" She dashed out the door and down the stairs towards the living room. She paused, spotting Jade and Felicia in the hallway adjoining the room. She opened her mouth to call out a greeting, but stopped.

The two models stood in front of an open cabinet, a candle in one of Jade's hands. The model's other hand was entwined with Felicia's. The two smiled at each other in that gentle, familiar way.

Aislinn tilted her head, considering the situation. A few moments later, she simply shrugged with a smile and turned to her right into the living room. "There you are, bugger!" she whispered to her purse, picking it up and quietly making her way to the stairs as to not disturb the two models.

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"So, did you have fun?" Matt asked on the car ride home.

Aislinn stifled a yawn. "Yes," she sleepily murmured.

"I assume that all of my debts are repaid," he said with a slight chuckle.

"You're forgiven, yes." She paused, a lingering silent moment. "Why am I forgiving you again?"

"This was my payment for you acting nice at the photoshoot for the magazine. Where you kept heckling the photographer?"

"Ah, yes," she muttered, her voice growing heavy with fatigue.

The silence continued on for another few moments.

"Should've used 30."

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I guess to make up for the long wait, this chapter is longer...? XD" I don't know.

Also! Happy Holidays! You can consider this a present, I guess...? XD I find it to be a bit boring in parts, but... I hope you like it. ;A;

Please remember to review! =D