I'm just a man ... standing in front of the world ... asking them to love my writing.
It started with giving out money to go to the store. And then when they're older, they're sprung.
Parents didn't know about the subtle relationships being formed. Because likely, if they did, they wouldn't approve. Though there were some who may have felt otherwise and turned their heads ... Or rather, turned their brains off and labeled any attention as a blessing. Perhaps swept up by his charm and generosity. Eager to brag to their friends and family that a celebrity singer, musician, producer was mentoring their daughter. Dollar signs in their eyes. Unaware that she had his personal phone number and talked to him more often than they were aware; late in the midnight hour even.
Chris Stephens dated women his own age, but there could be too many hassles involved.. A woman too sophisticated with her own mind and need for independence would want to know where he was all hours of the day and night. And he couldn't have that. Not when the night time was the right as far as he was concerned. Including several hours in the studio and then a few more hours clubbing.-- under the guise of searching for new talent.
If the search for "talent" was fruitless, it didn't matter. There was always a backup singer or dancer vying for his attention. And they didn't care if he was currently involved with someone that had the honor of walking red carpets with him. Because whether it be a girlfriend or a wife, they all tended to be temporary. But it wasn't the age appropriate women that were given a second glance by outsiders. It was the younger females that were joked about by fans and whispered about by non fans. The family secret that was hinted at on blogs and podcasts all over the internet, but no one wanted to personally take measures towards.
Stephens had a penchant for cruising by his old high school, his former college and the mall. In search for the naive ones who were so star struck that they'd follow him any and everywhere. And sometimes all it took to secure the deal was to spread a little money around.
Gucci handbags. IPhones. Designer dresses. Jewelry. Shoes ... All of the essentials to making a minimum wage earning or unemployed babe's eyes grow as big as saucers and her jaw to drop. Topped off with a meal at the food court or the nearest fast food joint.
If she wanted to sing or dance, he'd promise her a tour of his studio or backstage passes to his next appearance to show how it's done. Or sometimes he'd offer her a internship to start from the bottom and "pay her dues". And once she agreed, he'd even take her to shop for the perfect "work clothes".
He would call her his personal assistant. And she did everything to look the part.
From her head down to her feet. Sometimes being industrious enough to research what a good personal assistant should do on the internet.
She'd run made up errands for him, such as picking up his dry cleaning or taking a long trip to his favorite watering hole that served huge pickled pig's feet, right out of a gallon jar from behind the counter.
She'd take unnecessary notes in long hand, that had to be typed out on computer and printed up. Not to mention keeping coffee and/or liquor flowing and ordering, picking up and serving his favorite meals.
For her faithfulness, he'd woo her by taking her on picnics during her lunch break; sitting by the lakeside with a 2 liter of orange pop, sandwiches, chips and Twinkies. And he'd slip her money -- even though this was supposed to be an unpaid internship. Just enough to make her feel as though she were sitting on top of the world. All while looking deep into her eyes and stroking her face or touching her hand; making her feel like he couldn't do his job effectively without her by his side. Which was essential to getting her into bed if she hadn't given in to his charms earlier on.
Later down the road, he offered up his home so she could host parties and invite all of her hot female friends that he could potentially bed. More young ladies with dreams of fortune and fame. Some who didn't care so much about the fame, but wanted to be infamous for having his child. Therefore being linked to him for the rest of their lives. The best kind of bragging rights for someone who was otherwise living a hum-drum life.
Even Chris Stephens wasn't immune to women poking holes in unused condoms or fishing used ones out of the garbage to serve their own purposes. Because if any particular woman wanted him bad enough, she'd knock over her granny and step on her mom's back in order to make it so.
They used him just as much as he used them. However, he was the only one in danger of having his music banned from radio. And he was the one facing the possibility of being dropped from the music label that had been his home for over 20 years and losing multi million dollar endorsements.
In his mind, the risks outweighed the consequences. As far as he was concerned, he was the entertainment world's "teflon don". Untouchable.
© 2022 LaZeric Freeman