"Relax," Kelly said, as Jaiin and I started walking around the lobby. Our impulsiveness led to us becoming guests on the show, and as most of the Kellybiters know, the station won't let any visitors in by the time her show starts. It'd be complicated if I explain it here, but back then we never really knew why they did that, or why we were there in the first place.
Being "elected" as conference "president" after a weird turn of events was a weird thing already. "I'm a reluctant fan," I've told a handful of people, wishing that I was given merely a honorary title, which is in itself something to smile about. That night, three of us delivered prizes for a quiz on the conference that Daes somehow managed to come up with, and I decided to stay, just to let things chill before we take the long commute home. Maybe for a couple of hours.
"You have ten minutes," Kelly cued. She's started the show, and as she cues in one of her mixes, I was fidgeting on my seat. I wasn't just someone inside the studio - something that, with the help of some stealth tactics, would never get found out - but instead, I was on the microphone, and as the universally-agreed leader of the pack, I was to tell the world about that conference quiz bee we planned. Funnily enough, the topic of the night was luck, and as if it was on cue, I found myself, for an hour or so, becoming some guy on the radio, talking to unsuspecting listeners.
The night before, we took the decision to announce the game on the program in quite a surprising manner: a phone call to the station. Kelly was clueless back then, but during that conference - after I finished the visual aids for our world history report - I was begging for the phone to be picked up, but alas, the blinker was not blinking well, and my pleas were read as the show ended. A cause for anticipation, it seems, as the rest of the Kellybiters were waiting for the announcement until that night. Only then did we prepare the questions, and get things prepared. It's not as easy as it seems.
Nevertheless, it's a moment to live in. I am still waiting for word on whether my RX auditions went well - apparently, according to Jem, there were so many accepted the last time they haven't named the new batch yet - and if that doesn't prove successful, I'll graduate without anything interesting on my resumé. Now I suddenly find myself, at the very least, experiencing the experience, and it never crossed my mind whether I would buckle or not. I only started talking, the way I usually would if I'm alone, and even if I forgot the prize Kelly decided to throw into what we already have, I was having fun.
There it was on the airwaves, my "gayish" voice, no longer coming from my mobile.
Jaiin and I left the station twenty minutes behind schedule, if there even was a schedule. Daes had left earlier, having to attend to a family dinner, but she was still following the show, and even helping out on the conference, tending to bewildered reactions from listeners who found our questions too difficult. On the ordinary bus, the two of us were discussing the apparent repercussions of what we have just done, while worried sick about not continuing the journey home in the best way possible. When we split up, my thoughts drifted back to Angela, the girl I met two months ago while I claimed my wall clock, and why, up to now, she remembers me as the guy who lent her his jacket. The next morning, after getting more than enough sleep, I got an idea of what happened. "Just got my first warning," Kelly wrote us, talking about her first memo. "But it's all good."
All of us did feel bad about it; almost immediately we started exchanging apologies and regrets, although Kelly and I were trying our hardest to bring some sunshine. Then again, you'll feel something is wrong once you get into something too much. It's weird for me, because I've (almost) always thought a simple liner would do wonders in attempts to be thoughtful, and yet that afternoon I was walking at the Podium with greeting cards in one hands and the prizes in another.
Also consider that, for the past twenty-four nights, I've been pretty much tending to the conference - the inevitable consequence being my election - talking about life, love and losing your sanity, in the loosest sense of the term. Thankfully, on the night I was on air, only one friend decided to listen, even if I announced that to three people. Piyar is probably the only one closely connected to me that heard forty minutes' worth of the three of us talking about the game, the occasion, the conference, and my own love life, or what passes as one. I think they have reinforced the idea, and that moment I was pretty much cornered. There's no way to escape.
Indeed, once you get into something too much, something will go wrong. You don't know if something is right or wrong, or if something is this or that. In other words, denial.