“What the hell is this?” Isela glanced down at a press release announcing a new reality TV show on Vh1. “Rockstar Wives? How lame is that….” she read it to herself stopping at a name. Vanessa Rivera. “Oh no she didn’t. Oh no she didn’t.” Isela yelled at the sheet.
“You’re set to interview 3 of the 5 of them this afternoon…” Maggie yelled over her gasps.
“Which ones?” Isela asked.
“Well, I know one of them is Vanessa…” Maggie came over to her co-worker to see her reaction.
“Oh no, I can’t do that. You know I’m not an angry person, but this is too much.” Isela told her walking into her office with her cell phone in her hand. She closed her door dialing Bruno.
“Good morning, darlin’! What’s going on?” he answered the phone.
“Did you know about Vanessa?” she asked him bluntly.
“What about her?” he asked.
“She’s going to be on this new reality TV show…”
“Oh. Good for her.” he had clearly gotten over his ex.
“No. It’s not. She’s doing a Basketball Wives show..but with musicians…like Travis Barker’s wife is on there and some other rapper’s baby’s mamma is on there too…she’s the one that dated the musician but isn’t with him anymore…” Isela explained in an angry tone.
“Wait what?” he answered confused.
“Yes! That’s exactly what it is. You haven’t talked to her since October have you?” she asked.
“No, I haven’t…” he wondered out loud.
“You need to talk to her before I punch her in the face…” she told him.
“You wouldn’t do that, Selly.”
“Don’t under estimate me, Brunz. I am livid. How dare she exploit you like that…and it’s been more than a year since you two broke up…”
“I will call her. I don’t think there’s much we can do about it…except get angry at her…” he tried to reassure his fiancé over the phone.
“Can you call Jake to see what we can do to her?” she asked referring to his lawyer.
“Let me call her first…and then if I can’t get through to her then we can call Jake.” he finished. “And don’t do the interview. I know you’re upset. If you see her, walk in the other direction. I don’t think I’ve heard you this angry since…since…August…” he told her.
“I will try to walk in the other direction, Brunz. I’ll try my hardest..but I can’t promise….” she heard a knock on her door. “I have to go. Please call her.” she said hanging up the phone. She flipped her hair, checked her mascara since she was almost about to cry and said, “Come in…”
“Isela? Can I talk to you?” she saw Vanessa standing at her door wearing a tight blue dress and strappy white wedges. Her curly brown hair was straightened. She had so much make-up on it looked like she was wearing a mask. Isela wanted to punch her in the face, right then and there.
“Well, since you’re in my office..yes.” Isela said sarcastically.
“Okay…” she said quietly sitting down in one of Isela’s chairs. “I’m not sorry for what I’m doing. It’s paying my bills and a girl’s gotta do what she’s gotta do.” Vanessa said openly.
“I don’t think I can talk to you right now, Vanessa. I’m too pissed. Thank you for coming to talk to me, but I don’t have anything nice to say to you right now. Yesterday, I might have been nice to you. Today, you are the most disgusting person on the face of the earth. I am ashamed that we share something so important to me. And you exploiting that is really, really, just there are no words to describe how I feel about it. So, you can go now. Thanks for stopping bye.” Isela stood up opening the door walking out behind Vanessa. She heard Vanessa’s phone ring halfway down the hallway.
Bruno flipped through his address book to dial “Skanky Bitch.” He heard the phone ring several times before she picked up.
“Hey! I had a feeling you would call me, Brunz….” she answered.
“What the hell are you doing, Vanessa? What the fuck are you doing?” he asked her.
“I’m moving on with my life. I know you have…” she retorted.
“What happened to you not talking about us? You were all about he’s just a normal guy, we were together before Doo-wops and it’s personal and no one will ever know about what happened between us unless I tell them directly and in person? Where did that go? Even Christine wouldn’t do that. And she was…crazy.”
“Don’t tell me what to do, Bruno. It’s not all about you. You know you aren’t the only musician I’ve ever dated. Unlike your fiancé who only knows what you’re about..I know a lot more than just Bruno Mars…”
“Woah. Slow down. I have no idea what you’re talking about, Vanessa.”
“I’m saying she doesn’t have a lot to compare you to. “
“That’s a completely different story than you were telling me when she ran out the door in tears because you called her a whore, Vanessa.”
“Experience versus numbers are two different things, Bruno. And I have the experience she doesn’t. And that’s why they wanted me. I still don’t understand why you’re with her. I stand by my comments from that night.”
“Don’t ever insult Isela like that again, Vanessa. Jake will be in touch with your people…if you have those yet.” he hung up the phone.
“Are you going to watch it?” Lola asked.
“Hell no. And give her the satisfaction of knowing the show is getting ratings?”
“Well, I just want to see what it’s about…” Lola clicked the DVR to start the show.
“I’m leaving, Lolly..” she got up from the couch.
“No..watch it. Just the first one to see what it’s about…please?” she pleaded.
About half way through the show Isela commented on what was going on. “It’s not that bad…she’s just talking about touring with that guy…” she said.
“Yeah. It’s really not. I can see why they cast her…”
“When was this taped?” Isela asked.
“Hmm…” Lola grabbed her phone to check. “August to October…” she answered.
“Well fancy that bullshit.” Isela rolled her eyes knowing that Bruno’s drama would make it on the show. As they finished watching the show they waited for the preview. He’s going into rehab! Oh my god! Was the last thing they played.
“No. I don’t want to see this on TV…ever…” Isela said grabbing her phone.
“Don’t turn into an angry Mexican, Isela.” Lola told her.
“I’m calling Bruno. He always knows I’m an angry Mexican. “ she said as she finished dialing the phone.
“Damnit. Of course you’re somewhere…call me please.” she left a voicemail for him followed by a text.
“Wow, stalker much?” Lola asked her.
“No. I just need to talk to him…”
Two Weeks later
Bruno, Isela and Jake sat on one side of a large antique wodden table looking at Vanessa, her manager and her lawyer named Aric.
“Okay..” Aric started. “And you want all her episodes taken off the air?”
“I’m not doing that.” Vanessa stated.
“My client is not willing to accept those terms…” Jake said. “We will send you a cease and desist….” Isela glanced at Jake asking him to finish his statement. “For slander and libel..in five minutes.”
Bruno sat with his head down embarrassed by the proceedings. He knew it was a battle between Vanessa and Isela. He didn’t have anything to do with it, aside from his name being included. None of what happened that year mattered. The actual outcome was moot. The girls just wanted to see who would be the last standing. Isela was winning.
“We’ll also seal the documents to ensure no one sees it.” Jake continued.
“Because you’ll get the press…” Isela said. Bruno grabbed her hand to calm her down. “I’m fine, Bruno.” she said out loud.
Aric leaned over to talk to Vanessa. They spoke in hushed tones for about 5 minutes leaving everyone on the other side wondering what they were talking about. “We’re going to win, Brunz.” Jake told him.
“Vanessa…” Bruno spoke up. “You can have the show. Just don’t air anything including us. I don’t want you to lose your opportunity to do what you’ve always wanted to do…I’ve moved on from those events and to relive them is not what I want to do.”
“All you had to do was ask.” she told him. She looked at her manager nodding her head. “That’s fine.”
Isela’s jaw dropped.
“We’ll give you until the end of the week…” Jake said to the lawyer.
“We will take further steps to guarantee this is completed.” Jake explained. “We’ll have the papers to you by the end of the day.” Every stood up exchanging polite handshakes leaving the room,
“You could have stopped all this by just asking her?” Isela asked,
“There’s an art to understanding her, Selly. And sometimes you just have to ask. No one was being nice to her. She’s just going about the whole fame thing a little differently. At least there wasn’t a sex tape…”
“Yet…” Isela said under her breath as they drove off in his car.
Isela danced around in the dressing room mentally counting down the minutes until she walked down the sandy aisle. They had decided on something small, very small, considering the size of both their families. Yuli and Belen were her bridesmaids while Phil and Eric were Bruno’s groomsmen. Even though the wedding party was tiny, it didn’t stop all the siblings’ ability to assist with Isela’s wedding preparation. They both loved their families, but it got so out of control sometimes. Isela walked into the room wearing a pair of shorts and a I ♥ Hawaii t-shirt. Everyone was talking, putting on make-up, not paying attention to what she was doing. Yuli looked up at her twin sister as Isela started to sing I’ve got a husband…I’ve got a husband…I’m marrying a sinnngggeerr. A dancceer, a drummerrr and hotttieeee…”
Everyone turned around to see her laughing at her song. “It’s old school.” she told them.
“Isn’t that what you said on your first date?” Yuli asked.
“It is! I love my sister for remembering that!” Isela came to her sister giving her one of the biggest hugs they had ever had.
Befpre the ceremony Bruno walked past every one of the chairs on both sides of the aisle. He sat in the front row of Isela’s side where his youngest nephew was to place a single red rose for her mother. “This is for you, Angela…” he said under his breath.
“Brunoooo! What are you doing?” he heard a cousin yell at him from behind.
“Just thinking…” he replied.
“Don’t think too hard, bro. It hurts.” he laughed at his cousin.
“I know…” he said getting up walking back to his friends and family.
By sunset the small invited group began to arrive. Bruno stood in the front on the step humming something as everyone came in. The hugs and kisses were out of control. He felt like he needed to take a bath to rinse it all off. Eric came up next to him and looked at him with a serious face. He sat there for a few seconds before leaning over to kiss his brother on the lips.
“Dude!” Bruno yelled.
“What? Everyone else is doing it!”
“You just wait, E. You just wait.” as they finished the brotherly exchange Phil and Urbana came up to him.
“Don’t worry, Bru, Bru. I won’t kiss you…” Urbana said giving him a huge hug. “You deserve this.” she told him releasing herself from the hug.
Bruno saw his uncle walk past him toward the piano they had set up off to the left. He nodded his head which made Bruno get more nervous. “Okay, guys. Let’s do this…” Bruno said walking Urbana to her seat next to another group. As he walked back to hugged his mother and oldest sister. “You’re beautiful, Bruno.” his mother squeezed him tightly.
“Don’t be nervous, Brunz. It’ll be the best feeling in the world when this party is over. Knowing she’s yours forever is the best thing ever…” Phil said smiling at his wife and two children sitting in the middle of the audience.
They watched Yuli and Belen walk down the aisle to the composition Bruno and Ari had written just two nights before. After Yuli and Belen made their way down the aisle slow church bells to the tune of Marry You played.
“Awww…” Becca said as she watched her stepsister make her way down the aisle with her father.
Bruno was speechless…which is pretty impossible to make happen. Isela wore the simple white dress with a short light veil laying on her long brown hair twisted into a small bun. She blushed as he took her hand from her father. “I want to marry you…” he whispered in her ear squeezing her hand.
“Isela Luz Ortiz..I promise to love you, kiss you, tell you that you are the most beautiful woman in the world times a million. To stand by and with you through better or worse, for richer or for poorer, through all of your tests and your results, to start the most amazing family with you, and to be with you until death do us part minus day because I cannot live without you. “Bruno took the small ring from his brother’s hand placing it on her ring finger.
“Bruno…” she paused looking into his eyes catching a small tear escape his eye. Isela took her finger to wipe it from underneath his eye. “I’m the one that’s supposed to cry….” she smiled at him starting her vows. “Bruno…I promise to love you, to hold you, to be there for you when you need me no matter the time, place of distance. I will love and cherish every moment we have together, whether it’s standing this close to you in front of our family and friends or its on the phone at 6 in the morning…my time and 4 in the afternoon your time. For whatever reasons there are, we have been through a whole heck of a lot together. And I would never change a thing. And I promise I will be there for all of those good and all of those bad times with you, no matter how hard it is. Because…you are everything, I love you, Peter Gene Hernandez.” she took his sweaty hand from his side to place her ring on his finger. “I love you…” she said as he leaned in to kiss her.
“Mister and Mrs. Bruno Mars!” Phil yelled as the pastor introduced them as Mr. and Mrs. Peter Hernandez. As they pulled away from each other he wrapped his arms around her picking her up to carry her away from the crowd. She screamed happily telling him that she could walk.
“No. I’m holding on to you as long as I possibly can. Forever…” he said as he ran past the last row of guests.