The group gathered at the Bowery for a late meal. Mark, the Bowery’s owner and former Bon Jovi staff member, had closed the bar so that the band could have some privacy.
Trina was starving. She feasted on chicken wings and French fries. Mark was giving her a glass of beer when Jon sat down across from her.
“Food is good here huh?” He asked her. He motioned for Mark to get him a beer as he watched Trina polish off more fries.
“These are great.” She told him as she continued to dip the fries into a white cheese sauce.
“It’s all about the cheese.” Jon quipped. “It’s addicting. I make sure that every time I come here I get a double-bacon burger and cheese fries.” He continued.
“Mmm. Good advice. Can’t believe this is my second batch of fries.” She told him. Her face suddenly felt flushed.
“You were hungry.” Jon said. Mark by then had brought over his beer and placed it on the table. He looked at Trina’s empty basket and smiled.
“Another batch Trina?” Mark asked.
“Oh no!” she said holding up her hand. “Any more and I’ll explode.” She said.
Jon laughed. He took a sip of beer and planted the glass back down on the table.
“Since we’ve established that you’re also a junk food junkie. Can we talk about what happened earlier?” he asked.
Trina took a long sip of her beer. She wiped her mouth off with a napkin that she had placed in her lap. She took a deep breath. She really was very hesitant to talk about this now.
“It wasn’t a big deal.” She replied.
Jon looked surprised.
“No?” he asked.
“I mean I understand why you kissed me.”
“Okay.” Jon asked.
She attempted to put an end to the discussion.
“It’s easy to get caught up in the moment. All of that energy that crowd made tonight. Nerves. Completely understandable.”
“What if that wasn’t it? What if I genuinely like you and want to see what goes from here? ” He asked.
Trina looked shocked. She took another long sip of her beer, leaving the glass nearly empty. She needed to rationalize and like Kendall said…Focus. “Well Jon, I like you too. I mean look what you’ve done for me. You’ve been great.”
Jon smiled. “Thank you but-”
Trina became dismissive. “But, I have to focus Jon. I want to do the best job I can for everyone. I have deadlines, other assignments…”
“And you need to have a good time with all of this. Otherwise, none of this will make much sense. Now will it?” he told her.
“I guess.” She said.
“Listen Trina, I wouldn’t want to do anything that would keep you from doing your job.”
He looked down at his fingers, tapping the table nervously. “You and I have so much in common. You remind me so such of myself when I first started. You’re passionate, strong, and steadfast in what you believe in. Shit, seems like such a long-time ago when Polygram was trying to change my name to Johnny Lightning.” He told her.
Trina nearly spit out her beer.
“Johnny Lightning? Are you serious?” she asked him.
“Dead serious. And I fought them and won. And then it was the other time when I first got my record deal and I had to put a song on it that I hated.”
“Okay, kill me now, but I really haven’t had a chance to really take a listen to the first record. I know ‘Runaway’, but…” Trina said leaning back in her chair.
“She Don’t Know Me.’ I didn’t write that. In order for me to have the creative freedom I had and do to this day, I had to put that song on the record.” Jon said rolling his eyes.
Trina looked surprised. “I had no idea you didn’t write that.”
“It’s not me. Not a part of me. Not where my head was at when I wrote that record. Not even my style. So, I refuse to play it live.” He said.
“It’s not a bad song Jon.” Trina said finishing up her beer. Mark watched her empty glass. He quickly came over and it exchanged it for a full glass.
“No. But like you were telling me what you weren’t going to stand for earlier today with your writing is the same way I felt about that song. From that record, on, if I didn’t write it, I wasn’t going to record it. No one’s going to tell me what to add on a song I have no idea about ever again to guarantee a hit. I’ll write with others, perform with others. But I also want a say in what to write. Richie, Desmond Child are great with me that way.” Jon said.
Trina got it. She nodded her head in agreement. ‘Common ground.” She thought. It explained why he got that way at sound check. They shared more that she realized.
“You had to fight too.” She said.
Jon nodded. “Still do. You’d be surprised at some of the shit I go through sometimes.”
Trina reached out and touched his arm. “Well you’ve got a friend in me.” She said.
Jon smiled. “Good.” He told her as his hand met hers, their fingers interlocked with each other. Both now looked at each other as if they both now had a true understanding of the other.
“I guess that’s what the problem was with Dorothea?” Trina asked.
“Yep and then some. Not taking that. Not anymore.” He said.
“So what’s next?” She asked. Jon shrugged his shoulders. “Sleep and then Pittsburgh and god knows where else.”
“For me. It’s going to file my story, Pittsburgh and then bed. Goodnight Jon. Thanks for the talk.” Trina said getting up from her seat.
“No, thank you for reminding me to fight again.” Jon told her as he got up.
He walked over and gave her another kiss on the forehead.
Trina smiled. She can’t believe she is walking away from him. ‘What am I doing?’ she thought.