Chapter One

“You do understand how terrible of an idea this is, right?” Blue’s got that look of disgust along her pretty features. Her gray eyes narrowed and her mouth contorted downwards in a permanent frown, as it had been for most of the conversation. She looked tense with her back almost completely straight and her hands gripping the sides of the chair as if she’d jump up any moment just to cut the guy’s throat that had suggested such a foul thing to her.

“Stop being such a baby,” Ashley interjected back, seated right next to her. Unlike Blue, Ashley was appearing utterly indifferent and completely cool to the situation. She even looked bored out of her mind. Her gorgeous face set in that same icy expression that it has always held; the one that made her so famous and so very attractive to so many people. Well attractive or not, Blue did not feel at all intimidated by the look like everyone else in the world seemed to be. She didn’t even understand how anyone at all could be intimidated by Ashley, let alone find her so stunningly attractive, even though she was very attractive.

Blue’s grip on the chair became relatively tighter as she fought to even give the brunette the satisfaction of a glance. “Easy for you to say, you have no expectations or dignity, you selfish bitch.” The dirty blonde snaps, but Ashley’s only response was to pick at her nails as if Blue was only but the dirt on her shoe which was sure to set the dirty blonde off even more and of course Ashley must know that. She really had a way of managing to piss her off in a way nobody else ever could.

“Girls,” Lucas Bane rubbed at his temple in an attempt to duel the headache that had started the moment the two had walked into his room. Perhaps it started before the two had even gotten here, as it often did when he knew he had to deal with them at the same time. The problem with working with the talent was that the talents weren’t always smart or in the case of the two girls before him, mature. At least with each other they weren’t. Lucas normally did everything he could to keep them apart, but he managed both of them and the label demanded they work together more often than not and that often left Lucas in this rather frustrating position.

“I want my own tour,” Blue is absolutely furious, her gray gaze was blazing with a resound fire that Bane was sure he couldn’t put out even if he tried. But of course she’s furious. Last minute she finds out her solo tour is being bombarded by the one person she hates the most in the world, even if hating her makes no sense to Bane because Ashley was a reasonable girl and very professional, he could still see how Blue would be irritated, especially when she’s been promised and planning this tour for years. “I’ve earned it Bane.” The girl’s voice rose up defensively. Truth be told, Bane was sure she wasn’t exactly opposed to sharing a world tour, but when it came to Ashley things were always, always, always different.

If Blue and Ashley had to work together, things were always 100% more difficult.

Blue was sure that she had to work so much harder than Ashley for literally anything she wanted. All Ashley had to do with most of her career is flash her stoic look, maybe sometimes do that smirk that melts your soul and her sales skyrocket without even belting a note. Blue did not have that luxury; she had to plan out events strategically just so she could get them done her way. She had to be excessively interactive with fans as much as possible, which means owning at least one page on all social media platforms and updating them as frequently as possible even though she hates social media. That also includes promoting herself even though she absolutely hates to do that as well. Ashley didn’t have to do any of that. She definitely didn’t have every social media page and she hardly updated on the ones she did have. Ashley didn’t have to try, she just existed and people seemed to fall at her feet.

Everyone except for Blue Trotter it seems. A fact that was not lost on Ashley, whom often just found Blue more fascinating than anything else. She knew Blue didn’t like her much but Ashley couldn’t help that she found the girl to be incredibly interesting. Each time they were together it seemed to only fuel Blue’s hate even more so and Ashley just couldn’t understand why. It wasn’t that Blue was a bad person, because she wasn’t, Ashley knew that. Apparently there was just something about the brunette that really irritated the girl, and Ashley has always been really curious as to what that is.

Blue, however, just found it incredibly infuriating that she had to work so much harder than the girl next to her, but at least she thought she’d get her own tour out of it. Everything about Ashley just frustrated her; from the way she sits there silently to the moment she says anything at all. She doesn’t even have to say anything actually, just breathing is too much. “I know you have Blue, but it’s not what the label wants right now. You both are Ardelle Records top selling artists and a world tour done together means more money, faster ticket sales, etc.” Lucas continued to rub at his temple as if exhausted; he always was when he had to deal with them at the same time. They never made things easy on him and of course with this, they’d make things even harder.

“I understand,” Ashley responds calmly, trying not to smile as the statement further infuriates Blue, whose head finally whipped in her direction so fast she thought it would fly off.

“Stop acting like you’re not upset about this,” Blue snaps at her, gray eyes blazing. Blue knew this high road was only Ashley’s way of getting on her nerves once more as she often pulled stunts like this and Blue hated that it worked, hated that Ashley didn’t even flinch when the dirty blonde yelled at her. She looked at Blue like she was a nuisance, a small bug she wanted to squash but couldn’t reach. Sometimes she even looked at her as if she were amused and ready to laugh. She had always looked at Blue like that, like she was so much better than everyone else and Blue hated it. She hated her.

“I don’t see why this is such a bad thing?” Ashley’s emerald green eyes are filled with humor. It only further infuriates Blue that the brunette girl seems so incredibly relaxed and happy. She’s only doing this to get on her nerves and of course it’s working. It always works without fail.

She was giving Blue that look, the one with her right eyebrow raised on her forehead, her expression all dark and cold and domineering with a slight amused twinkle in her greens. It was the same look that sent most girl’s to their knees where Ashley was concerned, but not Blue, all it did to Blue was make her blood boil. “You pretend to be mature, but I know who you are. You’re just a heartless brat.” Blue snarls at her, gray eyes blazing into the pretty green ones in front of her. 

Blue knew Ashley was far from heartless, but she also knew that being called heartless was one of Ashley’s triggers; she absolutely hated it, and as if on cue, her pretty bright green eyes seemed to grow rather dark and the brunette’s nostrils flared. “If you would stop acting like a stupid fucking child you’d see that this isn’t so bad.” Ashley was no longer leaning back in her seat, now her back was as straight as Blue’s with her fists balled in her lap as if at any moment she’d take a swing at the dirty blonde, and Blue honestly wouldn’t put it past her.

Blue scoffed, “I’m the child!?”

“THAT’S ENOUGH,” Lucas finally yelled over them so he could silence both of them before they got lost in bickering. He took in a deep breath and moved his eyes back and forth between blazing grays and bright greens. “You have to work together; you have to manage to at least be civil enough, no matter how much PR your feuding gets. I want this tour to change the way your fan-bases interact with each other, I want this tour to change the way the world sees you both as artists. You’re not teenagers anymore. Show them you’ve both grown.” Lucas pulled out a contract from the confines of his desk and shot Blue the quickest glare he could to silence her before she started, because she was leaning forward with her lips parting in protest. “Tickets go on sale in two days, I brought you both here because the label requested that you both write and record a song together to help promote it.” Lucas slides the two contracts across the desk toward the both of them.

“Are you serious? A whole tour isn’t enough?” Blue exaggerates with her hands.

“We make two completely different types of music.” Ashley interjects over Blue and both the girl’s manage an annoyed glance at each other before they place their annoyed glances on Lucas.

“You wouldn’t have a problem with the tour if it wasn’t Ashley you had to share with and you wouldn’t care about the different genres of music if it wasn’t Blue you had to work with.” Lucas shuffles his hands through his short black hair as he stares at the girl’s in the chairs in front of his desk. “Take these contracts, sit down with your lawyers, sign them and bring them back. It’s not hard. This is just what you have to do, so get it done.”

Blue and Ashley huff the same exact way, both in frustrated defeat. They spare each other the wickedest of glances, Blue’s filled with anger and frustration and Ashley’s swirling with annoyance and irritation. The looks they give each other are often shared between them; it’s not unusual at all. They met at fifteen and ever since they’ve both been at each other’s throats. It’s a big mystery as to why, because on paper the two seem like they would be the best of friends.

But sometimes paper isn’t always able to tell the truth.

Blue snaps her contract up at the same time as Ashley. They both stand at the same time as well, in the same way, go for the door at the same time, try and exit through the door at the same time and end up yelling at each other about which one of them deserves to go through the door first.

Statements like “I should because I’m far more mature than you,”

And “Yeah right, you’re bigheaded and a brat.” And Lucas has honestly just had quite enough.

“Please get out!” He shouts loudly breaking both the girl’s apart from their usual trance of hating each other.

They jump at his loud voice, grumble as they both exit through the door, shoving each other slightly like children, slamming Lucas’s office door and making the glass on the window shake for a frightening seconds and Bane think’s it might actually fall, shatter, crack, just like every second does that he has to spend in the presents of those two when they are together. It doesn’t though, and eventually the bickering is muffled enough that he can finally let out a long stressful breathe of air as he sinks back in his chair.

“You’re actually the worst person I have ever met,” Blue pointed at her, voice thick with anger as they walked down the hall toward the front doors. Ashley even started taking large strides like she couldn’t wait to get away from her. It was most certainly like that actually because Blue was incredibly impossible to deal with for a long amount of time. She always did stuff like this, Ashley liked her, sort of, she was pretty and talented and kind to most but she just had this way of getting under the brunette’s skin, incessantly.

“Funny you say that when you’re probably the most irritating person anyone has ever met.” Ashley manages her retort, and it’s childish, she knows that, but her mood has plummeted and Blue is just… so infuriating. She picks up her strides because getting to those double glass doors at the end of the hallway equals freedom. However, regardless how fast she goes, Blue is keeping up with her. Her stormy gray eyes are absolutely furious, it’s a common look Ashley receives from the dirty blonde beside her, and it continues to set the brunette off, as it always seems to do. 

It’s constantly like this. Pretty Blue Trotter can’t shut her mouth for two seconds to let Ashley breath or think. The worst part is that Ashley knows she has the worst reactions when it comes to Blue, outside of her being absolutely maddening, Ashley actually likes her. She never feeds into such rich girl behavior but Blue brings the worst out of her when their encounters are like this one, which is most of the time. She’s always yelling and calling her names and Ashley can’t take it, she just can’t because she doesn’t deserve it and she really doesn’t get it. She doesn’t understand what she ever did to Blue to make the girl hate her so much, and she doesn’t know how to fix it.

Blue’s feet are slamming against the tile below them, which brings about the fear that she may break her heels as they click loudly, the noise bouncing off the walls of the empty hallway they’re traveling down. “You always walk around like you’re so much better than me, but you aren’t as cool as you think you are Ashley.” Blue’s voice is gravelly, the kind of sound Ashley would find sexy if Blue hadn’t already completely ruined her day. In fact, everything about Blue’s appearance today, she would find utterly and completely attractive if she hadn’t already succeeded in being the biggest bitch of Ashley’s afternoon.

The brunette can’t help the quiet relieved sigh that leaves her lips as she approaches the glass of the double doors. Though she stops beside them just to say, “I’m certainly much better than you.” and goes to shove the door open with her final word. But Blue stops her by pulling the door shut with a loud bang similar to the one that had been caused when she slammed Bane’s door. The dirty blonde enters her space in the next few moments, and being a little taller than Ashley right now with her heels on, the brunette finds her chin tilting up just to meet stormy, furious, gray eyes. She smells like roses and sunshine and it makes Ashley grind her teeth together in an attempt to control her boiling emotions because Blue this close when she’s this mad at her is also another thing that gets under her skin, and crawls beneath her flesh, and climbs itself into her veins because how can someone so pretty and so nice to everyone else hate her so much?

What the hell did she do?

The dirty blonde is close to her face now, her breath minty and her lips glossy. Emerald green eyes can’t help but slip around the features of her face, and suck in a heavy breath as the air between them changes into something far tenser than what had been transpiring beforehand. “The next time you say something like that to me you’re going to regret it.” Blue has a snarl to her pretty lips, a dangerous look in her eyes, dilated, almost black. Somehow, Ashley isn’t as intimidated as she is stunned. She’s always stunned when Blue gets in her face like this, whenever they’re alone. She doesn’t even understand the action. Ashley doesn’t even have to do anything to provoke it. 

Every single time they are alone, Blue finds something ridiculous to yell about and gets so close to Ashley she can feel the heat of her body all over her, smell the scent of her perfume and shampoo in every breath she takes in, hear the her breathes as they imitate her own. It’s not quite uncomfortable; but it is something. It makes her think things she’d never think about Blue Trotter during the day, thoughts that she normally manages to push to the back of her mind, due to her infuriating nature. 

But most of all, it strikes her dumb.

The dirty blonde’s eyes travel the features of her face in much the same way Ashley’s own green eyes do to hers. Every moment they have like this, her eyes always do that, and Ashley is never sure if she’s going to kiss her or kill her, or maybe she’ll manage to do both. They move from her cheekbones to her nose to her lips and then back up to her eyes. The interaction always feels like it takes years, but in reality Ashley knows it’s probably only a couple seconds, but watching Blue watch her always sets something off low in her stomach, flips her belly and makes her breathe shake and she can’t do anything but accept the feelings.

The interaction never lasts long, but it’s enough for Ashley to forget what they’re even fighting about if she does know at what they had managed to yell about, it’s enough for her to forget whatever Blue may have said beforehand that irritated her, until Blue is backing up again, pulling away from her and throwing the door open without a word until she’s a couple feet in front of the brunette. 

When they’re at somewhat of a safe distance, the dirty blonde turns to look at her like she is the scum of the earth, the worst thing she has ever seen, and she’ll mumble, as if she’s sharing some kind of secret, the most famous line they have ever spoken to each other.

“I hate you.”

Ashley’s fists clench at her sides as she watches Blue saunter off to her car, no reply managing to surface through her throat. She shakes off the feeling that had started rising in the pit of her stomach the best she can and stomps her way toward her own car. Fuck Blue Trotter, fuck her. Her stomach is flipping as she slides into the driver’s seat and starts her car in a daze. Blue is out of the parking lot before her, and storming off down the road in a nearly unsafe fashion.

“She’s going to kill herself,” Ashley grumbles to herself, shaking slightly as she backs out of the parking spot. She doesn’t speed out like Blue does; she takes her time and drives like a normal person, even though she’s screaming on the inside. She just needs to get home and write it out, play a couple songs.

Fuck her anyways.

Her phone rings but she ignores it. It takes her twenty minutes to get home. When she is home she’s still upset, for reasons she can’t completely name. It’s insane she lets Blue get under her skin like this but she’s well aware by now that she doesn’t think she could ever control it. No one else can do what Blue does to her and that in and of itself, just furthers her frustration. Hell, she’s sure Blue knows that by now. Maybe that’s why she does what she does, the brunette doesn’t know. She does know however, that she doesn’t usually let her feelings show for anyone or anything nor does she usually even acknowledge that she has feelings. She still thinks Blue must know it, Blue must strive for this.

The thought angers Ashley more and she spends the rest of the hour pulling songs out of nowhere, ones she’ll probably never share because Blue would know. Blue would know these songs are about her. So she puts them away in a box with all her other Blue Trotter inspired songs and shoves the box away to ignore its existence. 

Fuck her anyways.

It’s six p.m. when Ashley finally looks at her phone again. A missed call from her best friend flashes on her screen along with several other notifications she won’t actually take the time to look at. She’s not in the mood, nor is she ever in the mood, to check social media.

She unlocks her phone so she can call her friend back; it rings about three times before the bored tone of her best friend surfaces on the line. “Bitch it’s been four hours,” Kelly sasses, who knows what she’s doing or what she wants, but Ashley well aware that since her irritation has faded, she is absolutely starving, having eaten nothing at all today suddenly catching up with her.

She can’t stop the defeated sigh that leaves her lips as she stands from her couch and makes her way to the kitchen. “I know, I’m sorry, I’ve had a bad day.” Bad day usually means Blue Trotter was involved and her best friend knows that, but she really doesn’t want to talk about it so she hopes she just doesn’t ask.

When her tone comes through light and easy with, “So you take it out on me, rude,” and she pretends to be hurt, she knows her friend will only try and take her mind off of it, thankfully, because Ashley isn’t really sure she can talk about Blue today without spilling the way her belly flips when the girl steps into her space, and she doesn’t know how to explain that because she doesn’t get it herself.

She allows herself a soft chuckle. “Shut up, what did you want?” She asks as she pulls cupboard doors open, unaware of what she’s hungry for. She hopes if she just keeps opening drawers eventually something will pop out and flood her mind, but by the fourth cupboard she doubts that’s going to happen… maybe she’ll just order pizza instead.

“Why do I always have to want something when I call you?” Kelly asks innocently, which only causes a soft smirk to grace Ashley’s plump pink lips.

“When do you call me just wanting to know about my health?” She questions teasingly, listening to the girl on the other line huff slightly. Her smirk that had surfaced on her face eventually turns into a full blown grin as she awaits her friend’s answer. 

She pulls out a couple of things from the fifth cupboard but she isn’t really sure she’s in the mood for either and eventually puts them back, letting the cupboard door shut with a soft thud. “You have a point,” Ashley hears a rustling through the phone. “I was wondering if I could bring Darien on tour with us. He’s been a little lost lately and could use the getaway.” Ashley stops for a moment, a sudden knit to her eyebrows forming as she thinks. She knows Darien’s been in a funk since him and his girlfriend broke it off a while ago, but he hates tours. Why would this help?

“He never wanted to come before because he said the tours were always too long. This is a world tour; it’s even longer than a regular one.” Ashley pulls herself up on the counter beside her laptop that sits along the granite. She flips it open and taps it to life so she can order a pizza.

“Yeah I know, but he just broke up with Sara and he’s in this kind of funk. It’s just not him, and you said you were looking for a new drummer since the last one stole from you and attacked you on stage.” Ashley can’t stop the small chuckle that escapes her at the memory, though that night had been a disaster.

She finds herself nodding along with Kelly’s words as she starts to click what toppings she wants on her pizza. “Are you sure that working every night and getting little to no sleep is what’s best for him?” The brunette can feel her stomach flip as she thinks of another reason none of her friends would want to come on tour with them, they didn’t much like Blue and they found Ashley’s bickering with her an incessant annoyance. It was a never-ending annoyance, especially when Ashley would love to just have a civilized conversation, get to know her, but she resists. “Guess who will be joining us.” Ashley confesses softly her throat running dry at the thought as she pushes her computer back against the granite a little too aggressively. She pats it, as if it’s a living, breathing person and can feel her apology.

“Oh no, they didn’t.” Kelly says dramatically with a gasp at the end of her statement. Her antics cause another smile to surface across the brunette’s face. “Didn’t you just get done doing a photo-shoot with her?” Kelly gasps further, sounding frustrated for Ashley because that’s just what best friends do.

Ashley feels herself nod and can’t stop her jaw from working for a second as she thinks how irritating it is that the label tries so hard to try and get them to integrate their careers together. “Apparently it was for our fancy headlining world tour that we’re going to be doing together, oh, not to mention our future number one hit that’ll just rock the nation.” Ashley continues sarcastically. Her palm curls against the edge of the granite counter while her other tightens a little around her grip on her cellphone.

“Wow, a song too.” Kelly sounds stunned, but Ashley doesn’t really feel that stunned about the situation. The label loves the press their feuding gives them. It’s not what Lucas wants, it’s not what Ashley wants, it’s most certainly not what Blue wants, but the label wants it and that’s all they care about. 

More money, more money, more money. 

“Maybe you guys will finally fuck on this tour.” Kelly says bluntly, pulling a loud squeak from Ashley. She drops her phone suddenly and luckily it lands on the countertop and not the floor. Her stomach does its famous flip at the thought of even being slightly close to Blue in even the smallest of ways. The thought of her and Blue in any position other than killing each other isn’t realistic… but the statement still sets Ashley’s heart racing like she wants too when she really doesn’t.

She checks her phone over before pressing the device back to her ear to hear her best friend laughing hysterically on the other line. “That will never happen.” She responds sternly. Her stomach twists again, leaving an unpleasant warmth at the very thought of touching Blue Trotter in even the slightest intimate of ways that doesn’t involve defending herself against the girl’s possible attempts to murder her through the tour… Okay maybe that won’t happen, but she isn’t actually sure about that. Blue can be… scary

Eyes that Blue had set on her earlier flash through her mind without much permission and she can feel her breathe catch at the just the thought of more close proximity, along with “I hate you” and the way her hips swing when she stomps away from her every single time they meet. It makes Ashley grumble to herself and shake the thoughts off as she tries to regain focus of what she is doing.

“I’m telling you, release some of that tension. You both want it.” Anya encourages, though Ashley knows why she’s doing it. She just loves flustering Ashley; she finds it funny the way the normally controlled girl turns into a complete mess, even when she can’t see her.

The brunette can feel her frustration come back full force. “I’m hanging up now; Darien can come on tour if he wants. And fuck you by the way.” Ashley snaps out in exasperation, she feels her fingers tap impatiently along the granite as her unhelpful friend cackles into the speaker of the phone. 

“I think you mean, fuck Blue.” Kelly teases even further, knowing exactly what she’s doing. Ashley grunts unhappily in the phone and doesn’t say goodbye before tapping her pointer finger aggressively on the end button. She slides her phone away from her so it rests next to her laptop and grumbles to herself unhappily as she hops of the counter to go grab her money for her soon to be arriving pizza.

She spends the rest of the night, eating greasy pizza and binge watching some pointless sitcom on Netflix, trying not to think of her and Blue in any other position but killing each other. It almost works, but when she closes her eyes to sleep that night, she can no longer control what she sees, thinks, or desires.

She’d never admit that it was a good dream.