The Rendezvous Ch. 01byAchtungNight©
Celebs: Keri Russell, Alicia Witt, Evan Rachel Wood, Erika Christensen. Codes: FF, FFF, F+, cons, reluc, oral, fist, mast, exh, voy, viol.
Disclaimer: This story contains graphic sexual situations and adult themes and is therefore not suitable for those under age 18 or the close-minded. It may be illegal in some areas too. :( Please also note that it is not a true story, instead merely a fantasy. Real events may be referenced and real names, likenesses, and other personal details of celebrities and other real people may be part of the story- however they are used in a fictional manner styled to the author's liking that may be satirical at times. The author has never met any of the celebrities used herein, so he has no way of knowing if they really act the way they do in the story, and is confident that they probably don't. One hopes that these facts do not keep you, the reader, from enjoying the story.
Acknowledgements: Thanks as usual to all who have aided in the creation of this story, even those who have done so without knowing it. Thanks also to those who maintain sites for stories like this, and to all those who write for them, read them, and otherwise keep them alive. Thanks especially goes out to those who have sent this author feedback. If after reading this story you desire to do the same, please email feedback to me at the address in my profile. All feedback, with the exception of flames and spam, will be answered and appreciated. I hope you like this story. If not, please tell me why you didn't so I may learn of my mistakes.
Copyright: This story is my creation. All other stories which are referenced or otherwise paid homage herein belong to their respective creators. This story may be posted anywhere on the Internet that is free to access and has my permission- please email me for such. The inclusion of this disclaimer and proper credit will be all that I ask.
Notes: This story takes place during the making of the 2005 movie "The Upside of Anger." You may want to see that movie to get some of the in-jokes. It's also a pretty good movie, so you might be entertained, who knows? The story is related to the movie, but it is not based on it. Instead it's just a story where four young actresses begin a project together, resolve their differences, and then do some other things. ;D Special thanks to Nero, Victoria, and others for help with the story when needed.
That said, on with the show!
"Anger and resentment can stop you in your tracks. That's what I know now. It needs nothing to burn but the air and the life that it swallows and smothers. It's real, though - the fury, even when it isn't. It can change you... turn you... mold you and shape you into something you're not. The only upside to anger, then... is the person you become. Hopefully someone that wakes up one day and realizes they're not afraid to take the journey, someone that knows that the truth is, at best, a partially told story. That anger, like growth, comes in spurts and fits, and in its wake, leaves a new chance at acceptance, and the promise of calm. Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child."
- Lavender "Popeye" Wolfmeyer (Evan Rachel Wood), The Upside of Anger.
The Rendezvous- Chapter 1.
London, England. Late September 2003.
"Hey! Ain't you that girl from..."
"Felicity," Keri Russell completed, grimacing at the familiar question. She sighed and extended a hand to the young blonde man staring at her as she stepped off the elevator. "I'm Keri Russell. Nice to meet you."
"I love your show," the man said, shaking her hand and grinning like a satyr. Keri smiled back and tried to keep from rolling her storm-gray eyes.
"Thanks," she said, looking around the studio lobby. She was just heading back to her hotel after a successful audition for a new movie that would be starting filming the next day. From critically acclaimed writer/director Mike Binder, The Upside of Anger was set to premiere sometime in the next year or so. Keri, who was just breaking back into the acting business after several months off, was glad she had gotten a significant role in the film. Now, though, she was feeling a little out-of-sorts. Would she ever escape the shadow of her most well-known character?
"Um..." she said to the man as he released her hand after pumping it enthusiastically. She could feel his dark eyes running over her slim curves under her jeans, black shirt, and tan duster. "Uh..." The man looked back at her fresh face framed by shoulder-length golden brown curls. "You do know my show's over, right?" Keri asked.
"Yeah," the man sighed, shaking his head at her. "I miss it, don't you?"
"I don't miss it," Keri snapped, crossing her arms. Seeing the chagrinned look on the man's face, she dropped them and shrugged. "I was done with that character. It's over."
"Sorry," the man said, looking away from her for an instant. Then he turned back to her, grinning again. "It's good that you're growing back your hair."
"Please," Keri held up a hand, now unable to keep from looking upset. Why did I accept that dare during the second season? she wondered again, then shook off the question. "What'd you say your name was?"
"Sorry. It's Dave. Dave Shaw." He gestured around the studio lobby. "You, uh, gonna be in a movie here?"
"Yeah," Keri nodded, wondering if he worked in the building. "It starts filming tomorrow. The Upside of Anger."
"Hey! My girlfriend's in that one!"
Keri frowned. "Your girlfriend?"
"Yeah," he laughed. "Amy Safir." Keri raised her eyebrow, not recognizing the name. "Hope Mercey." Keri shook her head. "Zoey Woodbine."
"I don't know any of those girls," Keri shrugged in apology. "You're dating three different people?"
"No!" Dave gasped, throwing up a hand. "They're all the same girl, they're just characters she's played." He smiled. "You'd know her better by her real name, I guess. Alicia Witt."
"Oh." Keri had heard of the actress, read about her in magazines, and seen many of her movies and TV shows. "You mean the girl from Urban Legend?"
"Yeah," Dave said. "And Mr. Holland's Opus. Also Dune, and Ally McBeal, and..."
Keri cut him off. "I know who you're talking about. I heard that she was in the movie with me. I haven't met her yet, though."
"Oh," Dave paused, then shrugged. "She's playing Hadley, the snobby bitch oldest daughter- a natural role for her, if you ask me. Which one are you?"
"Emily," Keri said, grimacing at the insult in his statement. The man's deep Mockney accent made it seem all the harsher.
"Ah, the second youngest," Dave said. "The dancer with anorexia. I thought that Lauren Ambrose was gonna be her."
"She backed out," Keri replied, looking for a way to exit the conversation. The man's words and expression were making her very uncomfortable. "I auditioned, I got hired. Filming starts tomorrow."
"Right, right," Dave chuckled. "I think Alicia told me about that, I just forgot. Sorry."
"It's okay," said Keri. "It's a good part, I'm glad I got it."
"Oh yeah, I agree," Dave said, looking her over again. "Uh, ain't you a little old for it, though?"
"I can do it," Keri insisted. She'd been telling herself this for the past several weeks. The role was a good one, her second movie role since coming back to acting. It had meant a long trip to London- the movie was set in Detroit, but of course it was being filmed elsewhere- and a lot of catchup dance courses, but it would all be worth it. The role was a good one. It would get her notice, help her career.
"I ain't saying you can't do it," Dave said. "I just..." He shrugged.
"What's going on here?" a harsh voice interrupted before Keri could answer. She turned to see a tall redhaired girl in a blue dress and black coat approaching them, arms crossed. She had prominent cheekbones and a dimpled mouth. Medium length cherry red hair framed her pale face nicely. Her figure was lanky and well-muscled. Every trace of the girl bespoke deep elegance. The only thing spoiling it was the glare in her dark brown eyes.
"Ali!" Dave quickly reversed the angle of his lips. "Hey girl!"
"You know I don't like being called Ali, David," Alicia Witt said. She waved a hand at Keri. "Who's the bimbo?"
Keri's mouth fell open. "Bimbo?"
"Don't you recognize her?" Dave asked, his mouth once again agape. "It's Felicity!"
"Felicity?" Alicia raised an eyebrow, turning to regard Keri, who was grimacing. "The girl from that dumb WB show to which you're _so_ addicted?"
"What are you talking about?" Dave asked, starting to wave his hands rapidly. "You're the one who turned me on to that show. We watch it together all the time."
"Please excuse me," Alicia said to Keri, an insulting smirk on her lips. "Dave's been catching your show since it came out over here and dragging me into it. I didn't recognize you with all the hair."
"Uh, it's okay," Keri grimaced. She had liked Alicia Witt in all the movies in which she'd seen her, and looked forward to working with her. Now, though, she wasn't so sure. "I've been growing my hair back since the show ended."
"Thank goodness," Alicia said, looking her up and down and smiling fetchingly. "You looked like a shaved rat!"
Keri frowned, seeing Dave's mouth fall open again. "Uh, you don't like my show?"
"I hate it," Alicia declared, putting a hand on her hip and glaring down at Keri from four inches of added height, six counting her heels. "You play the most vapid little hussy I have ever seen on television."
"Uh..." Keri was again looking for a way out.
"Ali, what is with you?" Dave asked, looking shocked. "You like her show! We watch it all the time. And now the two of you are doing a movie together."
Alicia looked at Keri, her face sliding into a suddenly shocked expression. "What?"
"Upside of Anger," Keri supplied nervously. "You're Hadley. I'm Emily."
"Oh," Alicia gulped, putting a hand to her lips. "I'm sorry. I... I didn't know."
"It's okay," Keri said. "I just got the part today." She looked at Dave. "Um, your boyfriend was just telling me all about you."
Alicia's hand dropped, the glare coming into her eyes again. "He was talking to you?"
Keri nodded and took a step back from her, fearing another explosion. "We were just talking."
For a moment, she thought the other girl was going to lose it. Alicia was glaring daggers at her, arms tensed, fists clenched at her sides. Then the redhead spun and raised a finger, pointing it at Dave. "You were talking to this bimbo?!"
"Ali, baby," her boyfriend protested, waving his arms and talking rapidly. "Relax. I recognized her and introduced myself, I was just having fun. You know me!"
"Yes, I know you, Dave!" Alicia waved her finger at him. "I know you too well!"
"Baby, please," Dave begged her. "You know I wouldn't..."
Sensing that their attention was focused on each other, Keri seized the opportunity to hurry quickly across the lobby and out the studio's front door. Damn it, she thought to herself. I hope that tomorrow she's calmed down and we can avoid a repeat of this. Otherwise my new film is definitely not off to a great start.
"So, Keri," the film's writer/director said to her the next day as they walked through the studio hallway, "are you excited about the film?"
"Yes, Mike," Keri Russell nodded at Mike Binder. She felt better today, having rested and relaxed all of the previous evening. "It's a good script."
"Yes, it is," Mike agreed, stroking his black beard and tapping his fingers on his arms as he walked beside her. He was wearing a black suit, while Keri was today dressed in a white T-shirt, green jacket, and light gray khaki pants that hugged close against her legs. "It's full of juicy lines and great moments of emotion, especially for Joan and Kevin."
"Yeah," Keri said. He of course meant the film's stars, Kevin Costner and Joan Allen.
"They're looking very forward to working with you," Mike smiled. "However, you won't be meeting them today. I want you to spend all of the next two days or so rehearsing with the actresses playing your sisters. Get to know them, get close, build some rapport for your action before the camera. Do you think you can do that?"
"Um..." Keri frowned suddenly, remembering her encounter with Alicia Witt yesterday. If the redhead still remembered it, and she probably would if Keri's luck was running as usual, things could be bad. She didn't even know the other girl, she'd made a dismal first impression, and now they were going to have to spend the next few days working on chemistry. Not good!
"You remember who they are, right?" Mike asked her. "You're playing Emily, Alicia Witt is Hadley..."
"Yeah," Keri cut in. "And Erika Christensen is Andy, the third sister." She frowned as she remembered what she knew of that actress. They had never met, but just as with Alicia Keri had heard of Erika Christensen, read about her in magazines, and seen a few of her films. She thought the girl had great acting skill and was looking forward to meeting and working with her, but she was also worried. Erika Christensen had played a psychotic serial killer in her most well-known role, the title character of the teen slasher movie Swimfan. Keri was certain that anyone who could do such a part with the skill Erika had shown at it might very well be a crazy person in real life.
It didn't help that Keri had also heard Erika was a devoted lifelong member of the Church of Scientology. That religion was very popular in Hollywood, Keri reminded herself. Many celebrities followed it. John Travolta, Anne Archer, Tom Cruise, and several others. They all seemed to consider it a way of life, and Keri was afraid Erika would be just like them.
Maybe she won't be, Keri told herself for the hundredth time. I shouldn't be worried. It's just... I don't like religious people. Scientologists I'm especially not too fond of, thanks to all their strange customs and the scandals they've been involved in. Lawsuits, frame-ups, con games, mysterious deaths. Yeah, they've done charity work, too, I know. And their founder wrote many good things, wise things. I've read his books. They were okay. Really, I don't know why I'm worried. It's just...
It's your secret, her inner voice whispered. You're afraid what will happen if someone religious, someone like Erika, finds it out. You were worried about the same thing with Mel Gibson during the last movie you made. That turned out alright, though, didn't it? Maybe this will too. Yeah, sure, whatever.
"Yes, Erika," Mike laughed.
Obviously, Keri thought, he's thinking about their scenes in the movie. Erika's character, Andy, had several moments of emotionally charged interaction with the character Mike was playing, a radio producer named Shep.
"I'm looking very forward to working with her," Mike said with a grin.
"Uh, me too," Keri said. "Have you cast the fourth daughter yet?"
"Popeye?" Mike shook his head.
Of course he hasn't, Keri thought. That character is one of the most important in the film- the narrator and the youngest daughter. Naturally Mike's going to be agonizing for a long time over who to cast.
"I'm down to three candidates," said Mike. "They're upstairs in my office waiting for me. As soon as I pick the right girl, I'll send her down. It shouldn't take long."
"Good luck," Keri told him.
"Thank you," Mike said. He then turned to a door they were approaching and twisted its handle. He walked through, and Keri followed him into the small sitting room within. Alicia and another girl were already there, sitting beside each other at a table. A plate of cookies, a plate of sandwiches, and a bowl of fruit were set out before them. There were also several glasses and pitchers of water, soda, coffee, and juice.
"Scripts are on the table," Mike pointed at a pile of papers. "Take a copy." Keri noted that Erika and Alicia were each already holding one. "Your dressing room is down the hall," the director went on. "You remember where it is, right?" Keri nodded. "Good. The restroom is in the corner at the west end."
"Right," Keri said, grimacing as she regarded her co-stars. Alicia was looking back at her, the expression on her face showing she did indeed recognize Keri from yesterday. Great, Keri thought, looking over the redhead, who now wore a white dress and black suit jacket. Luck's running true to form.
The other girl was an inch shorter than Keri, her figure lusher in the hips and upper torso. She was dressed in a dark blue polo shirt, stonewashed jeans, and white sneakers. Long reddish-blonde hair framed her face, one curl of it clamped between her wide lips as she flipped through her script, highlighting lines in orange. Keri recognized her hair, dimpled features, and deep blue eyes from Swimfan, Banger Sisters, and all the other films she'd seen her in. It was Erika Christensen all right.
Okay, Keri told herself. Don't treat her like a jerk. Remember devoutly religious people can also be amazing people worthy of admiration, not to mention fun pranksters. Mel Gibson proved that to you in your last movie. Maybe Erika will prove it again. Yeah, right!
"Alicia, Erika," Mike coughed. The blonde looked up from her script. Mike waved at Keri. "This is Keri Russell. She's taking over the part of Emily from Lauren Ambrose."
"Hey!" Erika put her script down, stood up, walked over, and extended her hand. "You were on Roar, right? The girl Heath Ledger dreamed about?"
"Yeah," Keri felt her heart clench at the other actress's smile. It had been a small role in a show that didn't last too long, one not many of her fans remembered well, especially in the days since Felicity. It surprised her that a girl she'd never met would remember it now. "You watched that show?"
"My brothers have it on tape," Erika said. "They're big into fantasy stuff. I've watched it with them a few times." She took Keri's hand in her own, staring directly at the brunette and widening her smile as she shook hands with Keri. Keri frowned and raised her eyebrows, noticing the softness and warmth of Erika's skin.
"Uh, that's neat," Keri said, trying to make her face welcoming. "You might know me better from Felicity."
Erika grinned, nodding. "I watched that show almost every chance I got when it was on. Great depiction of college life." She turned and waved a hand at the other woman in the room. "This is Alicia Witt. She's playing Hadley. You may know her from a lot of movies, most recently Two Weeks Notice."
"We've met," Alicia snapped, still glaring at Keri.
"Is there something wrong?" Mike asked, looking back and forth at Alicia's expression and Keri's nervous frown.
"Nothing," Keri shook her head. Better get things out in the open, she then decided. "Alicia and I just had a bad encounter in the lobby yesterday. Alicia, I'm sorry about what happened. I tried to apologize at the time, but..."
"It's okay." Alicia waved a hand nonchalantly, though her eyes still spoke acid. "It was Dave's fault. For some reason, he insists on flirting incessantly with every female celebrity he meets."
"Oh," Keri raised her eyebrows. That would explain a few things. Suddenly she noticed Erika was smiling at Alicia and tracing a circle with her finger in the air beside her head.
"Don't do that," Alicia snapped at the blonde. Erika giggled and increased the speed of the gesture, causing the redhead to roll her eyes and let out a deep sigh. Great, Keri thought, obviously they're old friends. Wonderful.
"That young man is forbidden to be in the studio, Alicia," Mike said. "You should know that. After what he told Joan yesterday..."
"I know, Mike!" Alicia spun to regard him. "That 'Pat Nixon could have been a contender' joke he made up about her was very uninspired. Dave won't be coming back here."