Hot Bubblegum by SoapyMayhem
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
. . . *¨`*•.¸Hot Bubblegum¸.•*¨`* . . .
"Happy Birthday, angel," Renee said softly, hovering over my bed, waiting to present me with this monstrosity of a muffin that was only made more ridiculous because of the flickering birthday candle sticking out of the top.
"Let me sleep," I whined, pulling the soft duvet over my head.
"None of that, now - come down and say goodbye to Phil before he leaves for the office. Let him give you your birthday presents," she said warmly, tugging at my blanket.
Presents - hell yes…
"Okay, I'm up," I grumbled, stretching my tired limbs.
Renee pushed the festive muffin toward me, letting me blow out the candles, "My angel is an adult now. So grown up," she gushed before sitting the gifted baked goods on my bedside table, finally leaving me to get dressed. I sniffed at my substitute birthday cake, hoping for some chocolate chips. Disappointed by the bland smell of whole grains, I ended up tossing it in the garbage.
Fucking disgusting, health-food bullshit.
Like most of the residents in L.A., Renee was a health-nut - a vegan. If it ever had a face or couldn't be purchased from Whole Foods or a farmer's market, then we didn't eat it.
Well, it was my fucking eighteenth birthday and I wanted a goddamn In and Out burger.
I slipped on a pair of sleep shorts before rushing downstairs. Internally, I crossed my fingers hoping Phil was about to give me the gift I'd been waiting for.
"Happy birthday, Bella," Phil said brightly, his cosmetically enhanced features making him look slightly alien. He hugged me awkwardly, while I grunted in annoyance, unhappy with how familiar he always tried to get with me.
Phil had been my step-dad for about four years now and before then, I knew him as my agent - the one who had all theseurgent, late night meetings with my mother.
The first couple years he represented me, he and Renee were seeing each other in secret since Phil was still married to his second wife at the time. He was a cheating bastard, but he made my mom happy again and they seemed to get along really well.
"This is from your mother and me," he said handing me a set of keys.
Another fucking car… like I really needed that.
I followed them both out to the garage where they presented me with a silver Mini Cooper convertible. I plastered a fake smile on my face, accepting the gift as graciously as I could.
Did they really think I needed or even wanted that many cars? I 'd received a new one every birthday since I was fifteen, and they all sat in the garage, each with less than a thousand miles on them.
Of course they were all nice, but I rarely ever drove. Why would I when I was constantly attacked by little girls and their mothers wanting autographs and pictures taken with me, or the odd creepy man that claimed he wanted an autograph for his curiously absent daughter, only to have me sign it to Steve or Jerry or something obviously male.
Shit… I actually rushed out of bed for this?
Just as I was about to start pouting, Phil produced another gift.
"Here you go…" He moved to hand me a small silver gift box, but pulled it back at the last second. "Now don't go overboard with this," he warned.
I snatched the box, tearing into it with unrestrained excitement.
I was never one for gifts, especially those ridiculous cars I never used, but this was different.
This was my ticket to freedom.