I always wondered what the chances that today would be the day a life-changing event occurs for me. I contemplated the chances of me losing my sister. I contemplated the chances of me modeling more than just for fun. I contemplated the chances of meeting the guy I would someway, somehow fall in love with. The amount of things that could potentially happen within my day was infinite, and that was the kind of thing I thought about on my nightly walk down the streets of my hometown of Calabasas.
It wasn’t unusual for me to crave a life-changing event when my current day-to-day life had been rather mundane and redundant. I graduated college with a near meaningless degree that got me a job working retail, a job I already had before my degree, I lived with my younger sister Chelsea in a house my retired parents left us, I hung out with the same couple of girls I had become best friends with by middle school, and a lot of other blah blah blah.
In the midst of my racing thought process and texting my sister, I bumped into a stranger wearing all black with his hoodie up.
“I am so sorry. I do this a lot. I should be more attentive,” I said apologetically. I could see the shadow of the grin on his face right before he pulled his hoodie back a little bit. His voice was familiar, but I had yet to see his face because I felt that my text was obviously more important in that moment in time.
“Maybe. That little black screen will do it to you,” he said. I chuckled.
“You got that right.” When I finally looked up, I froze after realizing why his voice sounded familiar. I knew his voice. I knew him. He switched into an automatic panic mode.
“Please don’t scream!” he whispered to me. “I’ll do anything, just please don’t draw attention to me right now.” I managed to calm my nerves, but my heart still raced.
“Lucky for you, I’m still kind of shocked and I can’t scream. For the record, I don’t have reason to scream.” He continued to walk and I followed along beside him.
“So running into teen heartthrobs is a normal thing for you?” he asked with glee in his voice.
“You’re not a teen.”
“Anymore, but that’s what I’m still known as sometimes.”
“Why are you following me?”
“You sound surprisingly not amused by my presence as if you didn’t just freeze up after seeing my face a minute ago.” I felt a slight blush fill my cheeks, so I looked down at my feet and gave a short laugh to hide it.
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t still a little frozen.”
“Starstruck?” he asked with a grin. “Or confused as to why I’m out here walking alone in all black at midnight?”
“Why are you walking alone out here at midnight?”
“I come out every night for a walk to reflect.”
“And I do the same.”
“So how come I’ve never bumped into you before?” I joked. I made him smile.
“I usually come out a bit later than this.”
“Why did you decide to come out earlier tonight?”
“I figured I’d be pleasantly surprised.”
“If meeting a really pretty girl counts as pleasantly surprising, then yes. I was pleasantly surprised.” I grinned.
“Should I take that as a compliment or as you flirting with me?”
“Take it as you wish.”
“So you are flirting with me?” He shrugged and laughed.
“Does it sound like it?”
“It sounds like a pretty boy heartthrob who already has a girlfriend is trying to woo me.”
“Ouch, that hurt,” he said as we stopped in front of a huge, gated house.
“I don’t condone cheating and I am most certainly not going to be the girl caught up in a scandal with Justin Bieber.” He smiled nonchalantly as though my words didn’t effect him in the slightest bit.
“You are quite the know-it-all, huh?”
“Is that a bad thing?” He scanned his handprint on the screen beside the gate and it opened up.
“Can I offer you a break from your walk and a water bottle?”
“You walked me to your house?”
“You walked yourself here Pretty Girl. You were walking the opposite direction when you bumped into me.” I furrowed my eyebrows as I tried to recall what happened. He wasn’t lying.
“Wait a minute, you definitely did this on purpose. You trapped me in conversation so that I would have to follow you.”
“You didn’t have to follow me. You could’ve simply said ‘well, meeting you was cool, but I gotta go this way to get home’, but you didn’t. You chose to follow me.” In that moment, I caught myself following him once again, only this time it led me to the inside of his house. “See? You did it again.” He handed me a water bottle from his refrigerator with a smile on his face.
“You’re so… weird.”
“Says the girl who technically followed Justin Bieber into his home.”
“Says the guy who invited a random girl into his home and let her in.”
“And, you don’t even know my name yet.” He sat down on a stool by the island in the kitchen and stared at me as though he were interested in me.
“‘Yet’? This is amazing. I can’t believe you’ll be telling me your name. I hope it happens soon. Though, I don’t exactly mind continuing to call you Pretty Girl.” I grinned.
“Chanel, no Coco. That’s me.”
“That sounds like an Instagram handle. Is it yours?” I stayed quiet. “It is!” he said excitedly as he typed it into his phone and started to scroll through my account.
“Please don’t follow me. I don’t want a sudden increase in followers because your fans found me.”
“Don’t worry, I have a girlfriend, remember?” he said in a smartass tone that made me laugh.
“How is Selena?” He shrugged.
“Why so… careless?”
“I care. I just can’t have a normal girl selling an inside scoop with me about my relationship.”
“Trust me, the last thing I care about is selling your business. You’re cute, your music is great and makes me happy, but that’s all the significance your celebrity self has contributed to my life and I’d like to keep it that way.” He smirked childishly.
“You think I’m cute.”
“So does your girlfriend.” He rolled his eyes before continuing to look at my pictures.
“Why not seriously?”
“I’ve tried. No one’s really wanted to book me. It’s a dream deferred.”
“Don’t give up. Life-changing opportunities are sometimes sudden.”
“I can only hope.” I said after sending my sister a text. I turned around to throw away my water bottle and when I turned back, Justin had been typing on my phone. “What are you doing?”
“Giving you my number, obviously.”
“You’re joking.” I snatched my phone back only to see a new contact created on my screen.
“Try it.” I looked at him skeptically before sending him the waving emoji. His phone dinged. He held it up to me with a devilish smile to show me the number on his screen, which turned out to be mine. “And now I have yours.”
“You have a whole girlfriend, Justin!”
“I also have a whole lot of room for new friends!” he said copying my tone of voice.
“I feel the overwhelming urge to leave your house before you get me into any trouble,” I said as I slipped my leather jacket back on and walked towards the door.
“Let me walk you out. You know, so I can get you into trouble on your way out.” I glanced at him and rolled my eyes, which he found absolutely hilarious.
We walked for a couple of minutes until I was right outside of the gate.
“Well, this was… spontaneous,” I said nervously.
“Spontaneity is good. It adds excitement to a boring routine.” I nodded once.
“I’m going to let you get back home now. It’s almost one in the morning.”
“Thanks for inviting me in for water.” He grinned.
“Good night,” he replied. I began to walk off before he called my name out. “Chanel,” he said. I turned to face him. “Text me sometime. I want to be friends.” He completed his statement with the most sarcastic yet adorable grin. I couldn’t help but chuckle and shake my head before continuing on.
On my walk back home, the only thought that lingered in my mind was that meeting Justin was going to bring me an adventure.