“Chrissy, will you please, just take a break? You know it isn’t any fun with the rest of these heifers at the club.”
I put my brush down and turn around, “I have a gallery in 2 weeks, and this piece is no where near done,” I say to my best friend Morgan.
“You’ll get it done, you will probably come back in here tonight drunk as hell and finish it in an hour, I know you girl. Plus, there are supposed to be some hot guys out tonight, you know what happens when clubs open. And i kinda promised Micha that we would be there, we are on his list.” Micha is Morgan’s twin brother, and he’s the manager of a new night club here in Vegas.
“Fine bitch, you win this time. But I swear to God, i’m not leaving my studio after this until this shit is done.” I walk out into the hot Vegas sun and across my backyard, letting myself into my house. Well I should say my parents house since they own it, but they live in Tennessee.
I jump in the shower and get around in my underwear. “Mor! What the fuck am I supposed to wear?” She comes into my room wearing a short black skirt and a zebra print bra, she digs through my closet for a second and throws a dress at me. “Here wear this, you will surely get some wearing this.” “What if I don’t want to get some hookah?” I say as she walks out of my room.
As I step on the red carpet i’m immediately blinded by flashes, “Bruno, over here!” I’ve declined all interviews tonight, i’m out to have fun. I take a few steps and stop for more pictures. When I get to the end I wait for the rest of my guys.
At the door, a group of girls are talking with security, they are all covered in elaborate tattoos, a girl in a short black dress turns, catching my eye. I don’t see her face but she has black shoulder length hair, in a million layers and a huge peacock tattoo, starting between her shoulder blades with it’s tail trailing over her shoulder. I let my eyes travel down her body, and I almost choke on my gum, when I see the chucks on her feet, with bright pink laces.
As we walk into the club, Micha is there to take us back to our table. “Damn Chris, couldn’t you wear some different shoes? I mean you are smoking hot and then you get to your feet and it’s a damn shame.” I wave him off, I don’t do heels. I stop at the bar and order 2 shots of tequila, the bartender puts the shots down and puts salt next to it followed by a lime. “I know one of those better be for me.” I look over my shoulder, to find a guy a couple inches taller than me, with cinnamon colored skin, dark curls peeking out of his fedora. I push a shot towards him, lick my hand, then pour salt on it. “Can I get a pineapple absolute also,” I say to the bartender. I look towards my drinking partner, who just happens to be Bruno Mars. “To tonight, may we have fun and get shitty.” I clink my shot into his, lick my hand and toss my shot back. His lime goes straight to his mouth, I pick mine up and toss it over the bar at the trashcan. I slap a 20 down on the bar grab my drink and walk away.
I leave the bar and head up to my table in the VIP area upstairs. We all get set up with drinks and i’m ignoring everyone except my guys as I down a couple drinks. After a bit I start feeling good, I stand up and start dancing. Looking around, the club is filled with so many beautiful ladies, but I don’t see the girl with the peacock tattoo, my tequila partner. Her friends are at the table next to us, but she is no where in sight. “Yo Phil, there are the girls I was telling you about,” I say to him trying to be sly.
We get another round of drinks going and i’m replying to a text, looking at the ground when I see a pair of chucks with pink laces coming towards me. I tuck my phone in my pocket and step directly in her path. “Oh, excuse me,” I say acting like it was an accident. “I’m so sorry,” she says. When I look up from her feet, i’m met with eyes the color of honey. I can’t believe I didn’t notice them before. “Wow, you have amazing eyes.” “Thanks,” she says side stepping me and walks away. I look towards the guys and they are all laughing.
“Chrissy, that was Bruno Mars.” “And i’m Christian, glad we’ve established who everyone is,” I say rolling my eyes. Morgan looks up at me from her seat. “Did I just read his lips right, he said you had amazing eyes?” “Yeah and I Thanked him, girl you know I don’t mess around with those kinds of dudes.” I sit down next to Shawnie, “Hey girl! How’s hooking going for you?” “Shit, I might as well take it up, I would have better hours.” Shawnie is my tattoo artist and one of my closest friends. We sit there and talk for a few minutes and then I jump up and start dancing when a good song comes on. I grab Morgan’s hand and start dancing on her. Before I know it I’ve become a Bruno/Morgan sandwich. I turn around and put my ass into Morgan’s lap, grinding against her, giving our neighboring table full of guys a show. When the song is over Bruno grabs me by the waist and leans in, “Please tell me you like men?” “I like men,” I say laughing.
I lean back in and start dancing with her again, her friend has moved away and is now dancing with Kam. “What’s your name?” I look down from her honey eyes to her lips. She has a ring through her nose, her septum pierced and a little stud at the corner of her bottom lip. “I’m Chrissy,” She says turning around, she sticks her ass in my lap and starts grinding. I run my hand down her sleeved arm and pull it up, wrapping it around my neck. She turns around and looks up at me smiling. “What do you do for a living Chrissy?” “I’m an artist.” We’ve stopped dancing and are now just standing there. “I paint, I actually have a gallery showing in 2 weeks.”
Her eyes are crazy sexy, I can’t get over the color. I lean down and place a little kiss on her lips, “Where is this gallery going to be?” She bites into her lip looking up at me, “LA.” Just then someone yells her name. She looks over her shoulder, her face takes on a huge smile. She looks back up at me and says, “I’ll be right back, I have to say Hi.”
She takes off running and jumps into the arms of a guy, dressed in tight jeans, a plaid shirt and a beanie cap. She lets out a little scream, and then takes his face in her hands and plants a kiss on his cheek, when I realize who it is, I start laughing. This is unbelievable, Pharrell knows this girl. He looks over to me as she’s pointing my way, smiles and starts coming towards me. “Bruno, my man, how goes it.” “Ha, I’m great Pharrell, how are you?” We shake hands, “I see you’ve met my little Chris here.” SHIT! “Chrissy, is your lady?” “Oh shit. Naw man, Chrissy is the coolest chick you will ever meet. Talented as a mothafucka.” He gives her a playful shove, I’m getting a brother sister vibe from them.
I walk away and let them talk, Morgan has completely ditched me for some guy in Bruno’s group. I walk over to the bar and take another shot. The room starts to spin, “Rell,” I say walking back over to them, “I’m leaving. It was good seeing you.” He wraps me in a hug, “I’m gonna come over tomorrow and see your new shit. I need a new piece.” “It was nice meeting you Bruno,” I say running my hand down his arm, grabbing his fingers for a second. I turn and walk away, but I only make it a few steps before he grabs my hand. I follow the hand up his arms, stopping at his face. Oh lord those dimples! “Don’t do this to me.” “Do what,” I say smiling. “You’re gonna flirt your ass off and just leave, and i’ll never see you again. You know what i’m talking about,” he says leaning into my ear. “I really don’t have time for guys right now. And I don’t mess with celebrities.” He leans back down to my ear, “You don’t know what you’re missing,” he says biting into my ear, sending chills down my spine. I reach into my clutch, “How about this,” I say pulling a pen and paper out, “this is my website, you can find my email on there. Or you can convince Rell to give you my number.” I put my hand on the side of his face, lightly kiss his lips and walk away.
“So Pharrell, tell me about Chrissy,” I say as we sit down. He starts laughing, “She’s hot right?” “She is, how do you know her?” “Her Dad is Richard Marx, I met her through him, she has sang on a couple demos for me.” “Richard Marx as in, the producer?” He starts laughing, “Yessir, that is him.” Wow, I’ve worked with him once, he’s amazing. I didn’t know that he had a daughter. “You said she sang on a demo for you? She told me that she was a painter.” I’m starting to get confused, is this girl lying to me? “She is a painter, she just graduated from San Francisco Art Institute, with a double major. She paints, she takes amazing photographs, she sings, she plays 6 different instruments. Girl is sick talented.”
I get home and head to my room, stripping off my dress and shoes, and throw on a pair of sweats, pull up my hair and tie a scarf around my head. I grab my phone and head out across my yard, around my pool and into my studio. I turn all the lights on and turn my radio up, and then get all my supplies together. I feel bad about leaving Morgan, but she was too busy making out with that guy. I sit down on the floor, putting my canvas in front of me. It has this amazing sunset, with a beach, but its missing something. I get up and grab my sketch paper, and sit back down and let my hand take over. Closing my eyes every once in a while to see what i’m drawling again.
“Hey P, do you know where Chrissy went?” Her friend slurs her words as she comes up to us. “She went home,” he says. “Fuck, she was my ride. Can you run us home P?” Us? And then I realize that she is talking about her and Kam, he is all over her. I get up and grab Kam’s arm, “Yo man, are you sure you want to do that?” “I got this Bru,” he says brushing me off. Pharrell looks at me, “Well you want to go with us? Make sure your boy is okay?” I tell him to hold on and I go back to my table and lean down telling Phil that I’ll be back at the hotel later. “You okay Brunz?” “Yeah man, i’m just going to go with Pharrell, I’ll be back later. I have my phone.” Dre is gonna flip out when he comes back from the bathroom and sees that i’m not here.
We head out and they bring Pharrell’s car around. We all pile in and head out of town. After about 20 minutes we turn off the highway into a subdivision. The blocks are filled with huge houses. We pull up to the house and get out, Morgan and Kam let themselves in the house, Pharrell and I follow them. Morgan takes Kam’s hand and leads him up the stairs. “Come on Bruno, her lights are on in the studio,” He says and I follow him through the massive house to the back door. When we open the back door i’m hit with this insane melody. “Wow that’s beautiful.” “She’s singing, watch out man, she’s in a mood.” I stop in my steps and just listen, she’s singing this beautiful sad song about a guy that’s a liar. “Pharrell, I don’t know this girl all that well, i’m not sure I want to interrupt her.” “Bruno, you have been questioning me about her for the past 2 hours. Get in there, it’s not just a painting studio, her dad has a studio back in here too.” He grabs my hand and pulls me towards the little house that makes up the studio.
When we walk in, she’s sitting in the middle of the floor, paint supplies all around her, guitar in her lap, she has her back to us. Pharrell turns to me, putting his finger to his lips and motions me to follow him down the hall. As we are walking down the hall, I can’t help but notice all the paintings on the wall, some are abstract, there are naked women, sunsets, the artic lights painted over an outer space back ground. “Rell, these are amazing.” “Those are Chris’ work, I told you man, she is insane.” He opens the door at the end of the hall, and turns the light on. We’re in the studio. He flips switches, powers the computer up and then turns to me, “I’m going to hand you her guitar. She’s going to freak, just head back this way.” What have I gotten myself into?
We walk back into the main room, she is still playing, her voice is heavy with emotion, scratchy from her tears. He squats down next to her, rubbing her back, she looks up at him and breaks down. “Come on baby, let’s go let it out.” He takes her guitar and hands it to me, pointing to the tequila bottle on the floor. “Grab that.” I grab it and turn around walking back to the stuido, i look over my shoulder and Pharrell is following me, he’s carrying her. She is sobbing, I don’t see how a drunk, hysterical girl is going to do any good in this room, but i’m going to trust him. “Chris, where is that piano track you sent me last week?” He asks her as he sits her down. “Rell, please don’t make me do this.” She looks up to me for the first time. “I’m so sorry you have to see this,” she says slurring her words. I can’t say anything, I have no idea what i’m doing here, I don’t know this girl. She gets up and goes to the computer, pulling up a track. The sound of a sad bluesy piano fills the room. Chrissy closes her eyes and starts swaying, she starts mumbling and moaning. Pharrell picks her up and takes her to the booth, he pulls an armed chair to her and lowers the mic to her height.
He shuts the door and comes running into the room. “Restart that for me B.” He clicks a button and says, “Let it out Chris, you will feel better, you always do.” She looks up at me, pleading with those amazing eyes. “Pharrell, are you sure?” “Trust me B. Get a pen and paper from that drawer, you’re gonna have to write these lyrics down.” He moves over to the computer and restarts again, pressing more buttons to record her. The piano starts playing and i’m watching Chrissy’s face, fresh tears fall from her face, but as soon as she opens her mouth, my doubts are silenced by the magic that flows out of her mouth. She is curled up into a ball in the chair, eyes closed, and she has a huge powerful voice. “How,” is all I can manage to get out and Pharrell starts laughing. “I told you man, if she gets this trashed, and picks up a guitar on her own, you want her in that booth.” Her soul is flowing out in her words, and for 6 straight minutes we don’t make a sound. By the end her face is dry, and Pharrell and I are sobbing.
She comes out of the booth, looking a little more like the girl that I met at the club. “I’m sorry you had to see that,” she says looking up at me smiling. She excuses herself to the bathroom and I look at Pharrell. “Is she crazy?” He starts laughing, “Naw man, she just gets emotional when she drinks, i think that’s what makes her such a great artist. She gets all these emotions and then expresses it through music, or paintings.” He wipes his eyes. “I have never had a song make me cry like that,” I say looking at him. “She’s made me do it once before, she doesn’t get that deep very often.” When she comes back her face is washed, she looks amazing even without makeup. “Chrissy, your Dad is black, but what is your mom?” She has to be mixed with something, but I can’t figure it out. “She is Japanese,” she says laughing.
“Pharrell, I really needed to be working on my painting, but now you have me stuck in here. And now I want to have a session.” She says laughing, “Well you need to sober up a little, why don’t i go get my stuff, and I’ll come spend a couple days.” She jumps up, “Are you really gonna do an art camp with me again? You know by the end of the last one you couldn’t walk.” When she says that, I’m in the process of taking a drink. Needless to say, I choke on that drink and spit some out. “What the fuck am I hearing?” Pharrell starts laughing. “Chrissy and I have done what we call an ‘art camp’, we lock our selves in this house, and spend a week straight on music, painting, she tried to teach me to sculpt last time. But she is crazy, and makes me work out with her every day. So a week of no sleep, too much food, music, painting and intense work outs, by the end of the week your artistically full and sore as a motherfucker,” Interesting, “What do you have on your schedule Bruno? Why don’t you come do an art camp with us?” “You know what, that sounds amazing, let me step out and call my assistant and see if I have anything lined up or if I can move things around.”
“I step outside and call Ryan,” he answers after a minute. “Bruno, where are you?” “I’m in a studio with Pharrell, and I just witnessed some amazing shit! What does my schedule look like for the next week?” “Um, I think you are free, but let me look to be sure.” I’m running through things that I might need to do, I don’t think I have anything, I was just going to hang out in the studio with Phil and Ari. “The next 2 weeks are clear, we blocked them out for studio time.” “Alright, here is your choice, you can come here and do this art thing with me for the next week, or you can fly home in the morning. I’m staying here, I need to call Phil and see what he wants to do.” Phil is married with children so i’m sure that he probably won’t want to spend a week away from his family when he could be home.
Bruno comes back in, letting us know that he’s free for whatever, I turn to look at Rell. “Well, P are we doing this?” He’s been looking at his calendar on his phone, “I have 5 days.” I look at the clock, it’s 4am, “Okay i’m waking you guys up at 8, you can run and get your stuff and then i’ll go food shopping and we can start our lock in. I get up and walk back to my studio, throw my paint stuff back in the sink. Then I head back to the house, and collapse into my bed.
“Well,” Pharrell says looking at me, “She doesn’t play around, this will be the 4th time we’ve done this. She will have us up at 8 and not a minute later. Come on I’ll show you to an extra room.” We start turning everything off and I follow him to teh house, “There are 2 rooms on this floor, I usually sleep down here, if she wants to move you to a different room, she can do it tomorrow.” We say goodnight and I don’t even take my clothes off, I send Ryan a text telling him I will be there shortly after 8 to get him and within minutes I’m out.
I wake up before my alarm goes off, I never sleep. 3-4 hours are more than enough for me. I jump in the shower and throw my hair up in a bun, pull on a pair of tights and a shirt. When I step out of my room there is a naked black man, passed out halfway out of Morgan’s room. I step over his foot that’s stretched all the way across the hallway and make my way downstairs. I stop in the kitchen and start coffee before I wake the guys. I’m assuming that Pharrell is in his normal room so I peek in the other room, Bruno is sleeping, on top of the blankets fully clothed. I climb on the bed, and poke him, “Bruno Mars, your friend is naked in my hallway and I’m not sure if he’s alive or not.” His eyes pop open, and he looks at me confused for a second. “Well it’s a good thing we didn’t have sex,” I say climbing down from the bed, “that would make for an awkward morning.” He sits up, rubbing his eyes, he looks down at his watch and groans, “Well he wasn’t lying was he?” “For real Bruno, naked friend, hallway, upstairs. Get on that shit.”
I walk out of his room and into Pharrell’s. He has been one of my closest friends for about 10 years, he’s like my big brother. I know that I could walk in front of him in my underwear and never have to worry, I could climb into bed with him and cuddle up and all he would do is wrap his arms around me. He knows things about me that even Morgan doesn’t know and I’ve known her since I was 5. I pull the covers back and climb into the bed, he has his back to me. I put my body up against his and bite into his back, “Wake up Spaghetti-O.” “Chris, if you were my real sister, I would be kicking your ass right now,” he groans arching his back away from me.
I get up and jump on the bed, “Get up Rell, it’s day one of , Chrissy’s makes your lie miserable camp!” He sits up laughing, “Ain’t that the damn truth. Where is Bruno?” “He’s getting up, I just left his room.” He pulls me back down and wraps his arms around me, “He was giving me 20 questions about you at the club last night,” he whispers into my ear. “What do you mean?” “He likes you.” “Great and then you brought him here to see me act a fool, I don’t know Rell, I’m just not ready to do all that shit all over again.” “Nobody said you had to do shit, I’m just letting you know. Take it how you want to, be his friend, he’s a nice guy. Have sex with him if you want, or don’t that isn’t any of my business. I’m just saying give the guy a chance, I’m the only guy you haven’t pushed away in the past year.” I hate being put in this position, nobody understands me except P and Morgan. “Rell, don’t worry about it, after this week he won’t like me anymore.” “Chris, stop being so hard on yourself, after this week, he will like you more.” “Naw, this stupid thing will fuck everything up, it never lasts.” “Look, i’ll try to explain things to him, without actually telling him. You have to be the one to actually tell him.” He pulls me close and holds me tight for a minute. “Pharrell, you know I wouldn’t be able to function without you right?” He kisses my forehead and gets up.
I get up and walk down the hallway following the smell of coffee, I pass an open door and see Pharrell sitting in bed, with his arms around Chrissy. What is going on between these two? One second I get a brother-sister vibe and then it’s more than that. I go in search of a coffee cup, “Naw B, you don’t want to drink that shit. Chris makes the nastiest coffee you will ever taste. Let’s get your boy, we’ll hit up Starbucks on the way out.”
We get Kam up and out of the house without waking Morgan. “Pharrell, do you and Chrissy have a thing going on?” He looks at me and starts laughing hysterically. “You’re kidding right?” “I mean last night it was like a brother/sister relationship, but I saw you guys this morning and got a different vibe.” I feel like an idiot now.
“How am I gonna explain Chrissy to you without making her sound crazy, or giving away her story. Because there is a reason, but that is for her to tell.” He drums his fingers on the steering wheel for a minute thinking how to explain to me. “Okay, i’m going to just come out and say this, she has a disorder. I don’t even want to tell you that, but I am, please don’t treat her different. You have to give her a chance, It’s nothing you can catch from her. It’s in her brain. But the point of this is, she fights so hard everyday to overcome the “symptoms” as you could call them. And she is so different than she was when I met her 10 years ago.” She has a disorder? I guess that could explain why she acts a little different. “Her parents sheltered her really bad, they didn’t want her to know the world that her father worked in. So when she was 15 her dad went against her mother’s wishes and took her to the studio. That’s how I met her, and then it became an everyday thing, she HAD to be there. To me she was a really quiet girl, and there was something different about her but I couldn’t figure it out. I mean how many 15 year old girls do you know that will climb into their dads lap and hold on for dear life?” He looks at me and I just shake my head. “When she started trusting me, which took years, she started doing the same thing to me. Let me say that again. It took her years to even let me touch her. She danced with you last night, the first time she met you. That is how far she has come.”
We get to the hotel and Pharrell tells us to meet him back down here, he’s got to take care of something. Kam and I head up to our room. I’m assuming that he’s going to crawl back into bed. I go into my room and change, gather up all my stuff and then go next door to Ryan’s room. “Hey man are you going with me?” ”My stuff is all ready.” We go tell Dre and Phil bye and head back down.
When we get back into the car, he picks up where he left off. “When she was in college, she would call me, in the middle of the night. I was closer than her parents so she would call me and she would cry. People would figure her out, or figure out who she was. Or when she had to present a painting, or do a solo in music class. That stuff terrifies her! I can’t tell you how many times I had to go sneak into her dorm, and just hold her. If you think hard enough, you can figure it out.” I think for a minute, I really think I know what he’s talking about, but from what I read people with the disorder that i’m thinking about really don’t function well. “But Bruno man, I can tell you this, she has an amazing heart, and when she gets comfortable around you, you hardly notice that she is any different than any other girl. She only gets bad like last night or this morning when she is nervous, when things change.” He starts laughing, “If she wasn’t 14 years younger than me, and like my little sister, she would be my girl. Because she is an awesome chick. She has problems with dating, because guys don’t understand her, they think she is clingy, she shows things different than you and I, her emotions are almost child like. So if she climbs into your lap, or hugs you, even just touching you. Take it as a huge compliment. For me, when she is doing that stuff to me, it’s because she is nervous, I’ve known her so long that most of the time I will just pull her into my lap before she decides that she needs that.”
“Ryan, I hope you get to hear her voice in the next week.” I say turning around to look at him. “It’s amazing.” “Man, she’s been offered so many record contracts, from me and her dad. It just wouldn’t work though. And she doesn’t want it.” “We should make her another Millie-Vanillie! She could be the voice behind the star.” Pharrell starts laughing, “Yeah man, we’ve released some of her songs on Itunes. But she refuses to do a record. Sometimes she will just sing something and sell it, but she always makes me put my name in the credits, she doesn’t want any recognition musically. She loves to do it, but she doesn’t want it to be her job. She just wants to paint.”
As we’re getting out of the car, Chrissy pulls up behind us, “Hey guys,” she jumps out and heads to the trunk. We all follow her and help her unload. Her trunk is overflowing with food. “Dang girl, do you think you go enough?” Ryan asks laughing. She looks up at him and smiles, and then turns away. “Chrissy, this is Ryan.” I say touching her back, she smiles up at me, squeezing my arm, “Who is Ryan to you?” She asks looking from me to him, “He’s my friend and assistant.” She’s still holding my arm, standing there in the driveway, her arms full of grocery bags. “You’re not allowed assistant’s here, you have to do things for yourself.” “Ryan, you’re fired!” He pulls a sad face and she laughs. Pharrell looks at me and smiles, when he grabs for some bags he stops, “Chris, please tell me you got more than just bagels, pizza and cereal?” I look down at her bags and realize that her bags are full of frozen pizza. “Ryan has 3 bags full of meat. This is for me, you know better than that P.”
When we get inside, Morgan is sitting on the kitchen counter eating ice-cream out of the container. “Morning sunshine,” I say to her. “Where did Kameron go? I had fun with him last night.” Bruno starts laughing, “Apparently you had too much fun with him, he passed out while trying to escape your dungeon at some point.” She sticks her tongue out at him and then notices Ryan, “Who is that?” She whispers to me. “Damn Mor, can’t you wash last nights man off before you start on a new one?” Everyone starts laughing, “Damn Chris,”Pharrell says when he stops laughing. Morgan gets up and walks out pissed. “Shit! Morgan, I’m sorry I yell at her.”
Chrissy starts to flap her hands around, and then runs to the living room and curls up on the couch, rocking herself back and forth. “I’ll be right back guys,” Pharrell says. He goes into the living room, sits down and pulls Chrissy into his lap, he wraps his arms around her and starts rocking. “Dude what the fuck?” Ryan says to me, I shoot him a look. Pharrell looks my way, and motions me to come over. “Chris, you have to think before you blurt stuff like that out,” He whispers to her. She is smacking her hand on her leg over and over. “Rell, I fucking hate this. I hate my brain, stupid stupid stupid stupid.” He grabs her hand and holds it still, “You are above that, fight it, you have come so far. You have to keep fighting.” “Bruno is going to hate me. I’m fucking crazy, and he’s hot, and nice and i’m fucking crazy.” “What if he gave you a chance to explain, that’s one of your problems Chris. You never tell anyone why things are the way they are, you never give them a chance to accept you. I bet if you did, he would learn more about it, and he would do what I’m doing.”
She looks up to him, and he nods towards me. “I’m sorry, sorry sorry sorry.” I sit down on the other end of the couch. “Chris, can I go put that food away?” “I don’t want to make him uncomfortable.” “Well you’re doing better, so I bet you can sit here and be okay.” She turns and looks at me, “Come on Chrissy.” She lets go of Pharrell and he gets up. Turning her body towards me she stays in the middle of the couch, I’m taking this as a good sign.
“When I was 4, they toldmy parents that I had Asperger disorder, it’s in the autism spectrum. I did a lot of research on it once I got older. I’m not sure that I believe that, but that’s what they keep telling me. Although a lot of the things I do sound like the characteristics of Aspergers.” She starts to smack her leg again and I follow what I saw Pharrell do, reaching over and grabbing her hand. “Thank you. Some of us don’t function as well as I do, but I only have these ummmmm.” “Episodes?” “Yes, when I get overwhelmed. Autistic people get overwhelmed easily, especially when things change in their routine. My brain gets all fuzzy and I can’t handle things. What I was doing with Pharrell, climbing into his lap and him holding me tight, it makes me feel safe, it calms me and helps me take back control.” “That explains a lot. Should you go talk to Morgan or should I not even have mentioned that?” She pulls her hand away from me and scoots back to the other end of the couch. “She will come down, that’s one of the things that I struggle with the most. Confrontation scares the shit out of me, and sometimes my brain doesn’t understand that some things are out of line. I offend people a lot, but I don’t know that i’m doing it until they react to it.” “Look,” I say, scooting over and grabbing her hand again, “I really appreciate you explaining this to me, it helps me understand you, and I think that it’s great that you aren’t letting it stop you from being as normal as possible.” She gets off the couch, “No one is normal Bruno. I’m not trying to be normal at all. Hey Rell, what do we say about normal?”
“Me too’s are weird,” he yells back at me. I walk into the kitchen and start taking all the cereal out of the cabinet, rearranging them to face the same way in order of height. “What is ‘Me too’s’?” Bruno says coming into the kitchen. “Hey Chris, I like this new band,” Rell says to me. “Me too! God that shit is so weird.” I turn and look at Bruno, “My kitchen is your kitchen, help yourselves, I’m a horrible cook though.” Bruno walks further into the kitchen and opens a cabinet, “I fell like i’m in poptart heaven,” he says. “Rell likes poptarts so they are always here.” “Chrissy takes things overboard sometimes,” he says pulling a poptart out. I pour a bowl of cereal and walk out, heading to my studio. Bruno comes in and sits down on the couch. “Mind if I watch you?” “Not at all,” I say with my mouth full. I grab a sketch pad and a pencil and start doodling. I’m still trying to figure out what I want to put on my beach. I look up at Bruno and it hits me, “Can I draw you Bru?” “Absolutely.” I push my bowl of cereal aside and look at him for a minute. I know once I start this i’m going to obsess over every wrinkle in his face.