Chapter One:

Rumor Has It...

It's Split's Ville for heartthrob and action hero Liam Moore, after wrapping up the filming of the much anticipated action movie WANTED: DEAD OR ALIVE – set to be released next summer – the actor called it quits with his co-star German uber-babe Dita Von Ulsen, after two months of hot and heavy romance.

Liam Moore – who recently signed to star in the up-coming period TV drama THE SCOUNDREL (based upon the novel by the same title) – arrives in town solo.

From Star News L.A. July 9

Liam Moore shoved the so-called 'newspaper' aside, Star news L.A. was nothing more than a glorified tabloid in the guise of a 'serious entertainment newspaper' Newspaper! They hadn't gotten their facts straight! If it was true that Dita was, by most people's standards, an uber babe, Liam had always found her rather insipid: too pale and too skinny, with no boobs or even hips to speak of, and mostly resembling a washed out version of Claudia Shiffer.

It was also somewhat true that they had had a bit of a fling while shooting Wanted, but it had never been all that hot or heavy, mostly Dita and him had gotten drunk a couple of times together and since they were in the middle of nowhere shooting some scenes in the desert, and both were single and reasonably healthy, they had just taken care of each other bodily needs. No one was emotionally invested and no one had gotten hurt, and it had been pretty much over by the time the tabloids got wind of it.

If Liam was to be absolutely honest, his 'fling' with Dita had been a booty call but, being half way from 29 to 30 years old, he figured it was high time he stopped calling them booty calls; it made him sound immature and that was the last thing he wanted at present, especially since he would be leaving in about a week, trading sunny, southern California for upstate New York, where he would spend the next six-to nine months shooting the first season of The Scoundrel.

The Scoundrel would be Liam's return to TV after almost ten years of focusing on making feature films. Many thought it wasn't a smart career move but The Scoundrel was the first project to really spark his interest in months – years, even – and it had been remarkably hard to get the part, mostly because the studio and producers thought he was an airhead, overblown pretty boy who made action movies: great for summer blockbusters, not so great if you wanted someone who could actually act.

In the end, and quite suddenly, he had gotten the part, along with his friend Ariel Cooper – fellow actress and one time teen pop diva – it would be the first time he and Ariel worked together and he was actually excited about it, like a kid who suddenly had someone to sit with at lunch. No one, not even Star News L.A., would ever think to make up a story about him and Ari dating, and it would be a relief not to see his name in the likes of Star News, Celebrity Buzz or The National Enquirer.

Deciding to do away with the hated tabloid all together, Liam tossed it into the garbage can in his kitchen and wandered out toward the terrace of his beach house in Malibu, bringing with him a can of soda, some chips and the script for the first episode of The Scoundrel. As it was his habit, he began to read it from page one, including the production notes, technicalities and descriptions. That last one, the descriptions, made him pause for a minute. It had shocked him at first - and it still shocked him a little -when he had read the description of his character, Adam Byrne. Physically, he and Adam Byrne were a perfect match, right down to the mole they both had on their left shoulders – which was described at the end of the episode, during his first bedroom scene.

Maybe that was partially why he had gotten the part, and Ariel too, for that matter, they both matched their characters in The Scoundrel perfectly. Adam Byrne was described as a tall man (6 ft 2) with dark hair – as dark as a raven's wing (which he had always though was a rather sappy description but accurate none the less), and stone hard emerald green eyes. Liam didn't want to think his eyes were stone hard but many a girl had described the color as emerald. And that wasn't all! There were many other things about Adam that called to Liam: his views on life, his cynicism and the bone deep loneliness he sometimes felt, the need to conquer and have MORE, and the ever present hunger that had made him restless for as long as he had been successful.

Liam didn't particularly like that feeling – it confused and annoyed him – but he hadn't been able to shake it off. Liam knew it encompassed many things: the need to prove to himself and others that he was his own person and not merely the less talented son of The Great Dominic Moore; there was also the hole Ash had left in his heart, and the anger he still felt toward that One Person who for one crazy, beautiful week had given him hope, just to vanish with said hope one morning without warming or explanation.

Liam sighed and focused on the sea for moment, letting it clear his mind before re-focusing on the script. He didn't want to fuck up this job, it had been so hard to get it, and thinking about the past almost always made him angry (at best, at worse it depressed him). The studio was pulling out all the guns for this project, they had paid top dollar for the rights to the book and Liam knew the author was in some way involved with the writing of the scripts, and the studio had hired some hot shot historian to make sure everything was accurate – from the scripts to the clothes and the sets – it was going to be a massive project, and Liam wanted to be up to par.

From the inside of the house, the phone rang, but Liam didn't bother to answer it, and let the machine pick up, barely registering that it was the ever beautiful Ariel calling.

LI-AM! Okay, so, I talked to Mom and she said there are no houses available in Town to buy or rent. But she says you can –and by that she means you WILL – move in with us for the duration of the shoot, or until something opens up. She's even going to let you re-decorate your room.

I sometimes think you're her favorite kid and biology be dammed.

Anyway, she's expecting us on Friday; we'll fly out to NYC and then take the train up state, okay?

I still can't believe we are filming in my hometown! Just wait until you see the Granchester Compound, it will knock your half-British socks off!!!!

Call Me!


End of Chapter ONE