Demi Lovato had a smile on her face for the photographers. She had a smile on her face as she posed with the Jonas Brothers, and she kept that smile in place as she moved down the interview line. On the outside, she was as happy as she could seem. Inside, she didn't want to be there. She didn't want to have to smile. Her heart wasn't in it. Her heart was in Puerto Rico.
She wanted to scream. She wanted to hit something. There was this pain that resided in her heart, aching for the truth to be out there. She knew that would never happen. In their lives, they were lucky on one level, and that level was that no one paid attention to their eyes.. to Demi's eyes.
Her eyes were the window to her soul.. her weakness. The smiles could last for hours, the laughs even longer.. but they were never true. None reached her eyes, and she was thankful every single time that she could get through a public event without someone seeing through her facade.
She had many secrets.
Her most current one was the small little notebook that was safely placed underneath her pillow.. the one that had a calendar drawn into it, counting down the days until Selena was home. She knew that she wouldn't be close to complete until she had Selena with her again.
Her biggest one, however, was Selena.
The connection that the two of them had.. it had only been a matter of time before what they had evolved into what they have. The glances, the touches, the comfort.. every single ingredient of the perfect relationship was there, and once they realized it, there was no turning back. It was time for them to live a lie.
Her mind had a tendency to drift into fantasy land, but is always rudely returned by someone asking yet another question. "How are you enjoying this eventful night so far?" a nameless person asks.
"It's great. I mean, I really wish that Selena could be here.. she's way off in Puerto Rico filming the Wizards movie, so she couldn't join me.. but I totally miss her like mad," she replied, her gaze going to the empty spot next to her, for one brief second picturing Selena standing there, their arms wrapped around each other tightly.
Back in the safety of her room, she pulled out the notebook as the clock neared midnight. Crossing off another day, she tucked it safely back into safety.
Her phone began ringing as soon as she was in her pajamas, curled up under the covers. She answered it, Selena's voice filling her mind. "I can't sleep. Sing to me," she whispered.
Demi smiled. "What do you want me to sing?"
"Suprise me," she replied, yawning.
"I know just the song," she said. "They didn't have you where I come from, never knew the best was yet to come.." she began, her voice lower and rougher than normal as she quietly sang Lullaby by the Dixie Chicks, knowing it was one of Selena's favorite songs. As her voice faded, she heard Selena yawn again. "Bedtime?"
"Bedtime. I'll call you tomorrow.. I love you."
"I love you so much more," she replied, waiting until her phone disconnected itself. It was heartbreaking to her, wanting to hold Selena so badly but knowing that she could only do so in the privacy of their bedrooms.
Staring at the ceiling, she took a quick second to glance at the clock. "Four in the freaking morning.." she mumbled, rolling off her bed and heading to her laptop. She quickly brought up the most recent YouTube video, watching only Selena. "I miss you like hell right now," she whispered.
Looking again at the time, she smirked as she brought up a webpage for Northwest Airlines, quickly going through the motions, purchasing a plane ticket to San Juan. As the E-Ticket printed, she began throwing random articles of clothing into a backpack, quickly followed by the essentials from her bathroom.
Grabbing the paper from the printer, she waited until she was sitting on the front porch to pull out her cell phone and call a cab. Her eyes didn't leave the window that belonged to her mother and step-father, praying that no signs of life would appear. She let out a sigh of relief as she told the cabbie to head to Los Angeles International Airport.
Stepping out into the sunshine, Demi pulled out her phone, quickly highlighting a name and pressing call. After two rings, there was an answer. "Hello?"
"Mandy.. it's Demi.."
"Well, hey there. What can I do for you?"
"Pick me up at the San Juan airport, get me into Selena's room without her knowing and don't call my mother and tell her where I am?" she asked in one fluid breath.
Mandy was silent for a moment. "I'll pick you up and then we can talk about the other two," she said, seconds before disconnecting. Demi put her phone back into her pocket, nodding while giving herself a silent congrats for the attempt.
She had only been sitting on the curb for a little over fifteen minutes before Mandy pulled up. Demi climbed into the passenger seat, smiling at her girlfriends mother. "Wasap?"
Shaking her head, Mandy remained silent as she drove off. The ride was silent, even as they walked up the stairs at the hotel. Mandy pulled out a keycard, letting them into a room. Demi didn't need to see the contents to know it was Selena's. "If she calls and flat out asks me if you are here, I won't lie to her. If she asks me if I know where you are, my lips are sealed. She finds out, I deny having any knowledge of seeing you. It's your problem."
Demi watched wordlessly as Mandy left the room. Smirking, she looked around, deciding she was going to pick up the hurricane zone that was the floor of the room. She didn't know what time Selena was going to be back in the room, but she knew she was going to have it cleaned for her.
After almost an hour, lack of sleep took over. Demi curled up on the bed, falling asleep within moments.
The door opened, hallway noise not disturbing the sleeping form. Once the room was silent again, Selena turned, dropping her phone as she took in the sight before her. "Demi?"
The figure didn't wake, only rolling over in her sleep, now facing the doorway.
"Baby," she whispered, moving to the bed and pulling the blankets around her girlfriend. She threw on a change of clothes before sending a quick text to her mom, saying that she wasn't gonna make it downstairs for dinner. Slowly, trying her best not to wake Demi, she crawled into the bed, wrapping her arms around Demi's waist.
Hours later, Demi awoke, turning to see Selena watching her. "Hey.."
"So, like, how in the hell did you end up in my bed? I mean, do you always go to random places across the country from you and fall asleep in someone elses bed? I think that might be something I have a right to know," Selena said, leaning so her face was less than an inch from Demi's.
"I couldn't stand to be apart from you any longer. So I got a plane ticket and voila," she replied, closing the distance to press their lips together.
"I'm hungry," Demi mumbled, her fingers tracing invisible patterns on Selena's bare stomach.
"You are a bottomless pit. You are always hungry. I'll run downstairs and grab some toast or something," she replied, sliding off of the bed, grabbing blindly at the clothes on the floor, shrugging when she came up with her shorts and Demi's shirt. "And I am borrowing your shirt."
She grabbed the keycard from the dresser and headed to the door. Swinging it open, she stopped in her tracks when she saw her mother standing there, arm raised as if she were about to knock.
Mandy lowered her arm, glancing at her daughter. "Isn't that Demi's sh.. nevermind. I do not want to know the answer to that question. I only come to ask if you two want food."
"Uh.. yeah.. I was just about to go and get some.."
"Relax. I'll bring you up some. And, honey, two things. One, fix your hair. Two, Demi's mom called. She knows she is here.. she wants her home in three days."
"Alright. Thank you," she mumbled, closing the door and stumbling back the bad. "Damn, that was awkward."
Selena sat on the edge of the bed, silently waiting for the knock that would bring the food to them. Minutes later, it arrived. Selena threw on a hat before opening the door. "By fix your hair, I didn't mean throw on a hat," Mandy said, handing Selena two plates. "You need to be downstairs in an hour."
Selena nodded, letting the door close before heading back to the bed and handing Demi one of the plates. "I have to go in an hour."
"What can I do all day?"
"Watch a movie?"
Demi smiled, reaching out to playfully shove Selena's shoulder. "Is it bad that I just want to stay here until you leave?"
The smile faded from Selena's face. "Your mom knows you're here. You have to be home in three days."
Demi stood up and set her plate on the dresser. "Well, that was a mood killer."
Selena set her plate next to Demi's. "Look, I didn't mean to bring the mood down, but it had to be said. Look at it this way, we have three days to spend together."
"But you'll be filming a majority of that time!"
"I should just freaking head home now.. save us both the hassle.."
"You are not going anywhere," Selena whispered, wrapping her arms around Demi.
"I don't care about their privacy! She knows that she was supposed to be home yesterday and I know she is still here!" Dianna snapped, her eyes locking with Mandy's. "Let me into that room!"
Mandy bit her lip, her eyes darting towards the door to Selena's hotel room. She wished there was some way that she could warn the two girls, but knew there would be no way to let them know the hell that was about to befall them. "Alright."
The door opened, Dianna stepping in and gasping at the sight before her. Demi looked up, shocked, as Selena ended up rolling off of her and onto the floor. Against her better judgement, she giggled. "What is going on?!"
Demi stood up, wrapping the blanket around her. "Mom! What are you doing here?!"
"Coming to get you! You were supposed to be on a plane home yesterday. I want you to gather your things and meet me downstairs in five minutes." She turned, looking at Mandy. "Did you know about this?" Mandy nodded. "How could you let this go on?" she asked, shaking her head and leaving the room.
Demi sat on the couch, her eyes locked on the floor. "I don't want you seeing her. I refuse to let this disgraceful act continue on."
"Mom! I need her!"
"No, you don't!"
"I do! She is my best friend.. my everything.. I love her and I just want to be with her!"
Dianna stopped pacing, turning to look at her daughter. "I refuse to let my child participate in such acts.."
"Is the only reason that you are having this talk with me because you know Selena is coming home in a few days? Why are you so scared?" Demi asked, looking up to meet her mothers eyes.
"I.. am not scared. I do not want you to see her anymore.. at all.. you will not see her unless it is a public event."
Demi bit her lip to stop herself from saying something she would regret. "I'm going to my room."
She headed to her room, closing the door behind her. To her, without Selena, her bed never looked inviting, but at this moment, all she wanted to do was curl up in a ball and die.. to make the pain in her chest stop.
The next four days brought about a zombie-like Demi. She only left her room if she needed something outside of it. For some meals, Dallas would bring a plate of food up to the room, setting it on the nightstand, removing the plate of uneaten or barely picked at food from the previous meal.
The day Selena was due back in Los Angeles, Doomsday, as Demi called it, Dianna had stuck her head in Demi's room letting her daughter know that she was going out for a couple hours. It was twenty minutes after she left that Selena ran into the room, jumping on top of the bed and kissing Demi. "I missed you," she mumbled.
Demi pushed Selena off of her, standing up. "Get out."
Selena stepped back, shocked. "What?"
"Get out. You can't be here. I am not allowed to be anywhere near you.. you have to leave.."
"Please.. you have to leave.."
Selena shook her head. "Don't let your mother do this to you.. to us.. Demi, I love you. I will always love you. I am not going to just leave you to rot here.. come live with me.."
Demi shook her head, backing into the corner. "Just go.."
"Fine. Give in to her.. but I won't leave you alone. You know how you feel.. you know as soon as I leave, you are going to see me in every single little thing you do. And it is going to remind you how much I fucking love you, and it will kill you. And I wish I could be there to hold you through that, but I can't. I won't be around so your mother doesn't hurt you anymore than she already has. I love you, Demi, and I will never stop. Ever," Selena said, walking backwards out of the room.
"Demi, you see what I mean?" Dianna said, setting the dinner plate on the table in front of Demi. "Do you really think she loves you so much if she hasn't made any attempt to call you?"
"I guess your right.." she whispered, numbly poking the food on the plate. Dallas looked from her mother to her sister, shaking her head. For the past three weeks, she had her suspicions about what their mother was doing, and as time went by, it only proved her right.
After dinner, Demi was alone in the kitchen doing the dishes. Dallas slid into the room, taking the plate from Demi's hand and nudging her out of the way. "Why don't you take a little break. I got the dishes.."
Demi nodded, leaning back againstthe fridge. "So, why don't you just get to the point.."
Dallas sighed, turning to look at her sister. "Look, mom is, like, brainwashing you! She has you thinking that Selena doesn't care about you, and you are totally buying into it."
"Dallas, you know that if she cared she would have tried to see me by now!"
Rolling her eyes, Dallas was silent as she finished the dishes, starting the dishwasher before turning back to Demi. "I saw her the other day.. she is a mess, Demi. Mandy said she is barely talking, she just acts like you.. sitting in her room all day except when she is forced to eat. This is killing her as much as it is killing you.. you need to do something about it!"
"There is nothing I can do about it! That's the problem.."
"Get out of this house.. Demi, you can easily move out. If you didn't want to live alone, I could move with you.. hell, I bet Mandy would let you move in there. She wants you and Sel together, because she knows that you two need each other. You just aren't the same without each other."
Demi bit her lip, looking at her sister. "What makes you so sure that Mandy would let me live with them if I needed a place to stay?"
Dallas laughed. "Maybe because Mandy loves you, sometimes I think more than mom does.. she gets you and Selena, and she loves you both anyways. She cares about you, and she is almost as upset about everything as Selena is."
"No. I can't. Mom is right.. if Selena cares, she would have made some sort of an effort," Demi said, shaking her head. "Maybe it just wasn't meant to be."
Dallas watched her sister leave the room, waiting until she could hear Demi walking up the stairs before she pulled her phone out of her pocket, dialing Mandy.
"How did it go?" Mandy asked.
Dallas sighed. "Not good."
"Did you tell her she would be able to live here?"
"She didn't believe me. She thinks that mom is right.. that if Selena cared, she would have made more effort."
"Does she know that Selena can barely get herself out of bed in the morning? This is killing the both of them."
The line was silent for a moment. "We'll figure something out."
Dallas smirked. "Take Selena to dinner tomorrow night.. whether she wants to go or not.. say, about six.. at.. the Ruby Tuesdays over in West Covina?"
"We'll be there."
Dallas disconnected before heading up to Demi's room to inform her that they were going to dinner the next night.
Demi began to fidget with her napkin, occasionally throwing a glance to Dallas, who had her eyes on the door. She stood and smiled when she saw Mandy and Selena enter the building, waving them over. Before Demi could object, Dallas moved to the other side of the table, pulling Mandy into the seat next to her so Selena and Demi were crammed into the other side of the booth together.
"Look, I know the two of you mean well.. but mom said I am not allowed to see Selena.." Demi said, her eyes not leaving the table.
Mandy and Dallas shrugged, smirks on their faces. Mandy brought her foot up and nudged Selena closer to Demi, causing the two sixteen year olds to make slight contact. Demi inhaled, closing her eyes as Selena's dropped from her moms to the table.
There wasn't much talk during dinner besides the conversations with the waiter. Once dinner was complete, Mandy and Dallas quickly ushered the two young women into the backseat of Mandy's Escape, despite protests from both of them. "Look, you two are going to talk and see that this is hurting the both of you whether you like it or not!" Mandy snapped, getting into the drivers seat.
She headed to a park, and while Selena and Demi remained in the vehicle, Dallas and Mandy vacated, so as to give the two of them some privacy.
Demi was counting the minutes of silence in her head. It was fast approaching fifteen when she realized that Selena was crying. Her mouth opened, then closed, then opened again. She felt like a fish. Finally, her hand reached out and tightly gripped Selena's. "I'm sorry," she whispered. "I'm so sorry."
For a moment, Demi thought that Selena's tears were going to stop, but then the sobs began. Not knowing of anything else to do, she wrapped both arms around Selena and rubbed small circles on her back. She could feel the sobs slowly ending, and from the safe confines of her arms, she could faintly hear Selena's voice, "Can we fix us?"
"I want to.. I really want to.."
Selena looked up, her eyes locking with Demi's. Her hand came up to intertwine with Demi's, the tears still falling down her face. "What do we do?"
It was in that moment that Demi's heart broke. "I hate her!" she yelled, her hand shooting out to smack the headrest on the seat in front of her. "I hate her for getting to me.. for sneaking thoughts into my head!"
She climbed out of the backseat, walked to the nearest tree and punched it, throwing the weight of her whole body into it. It took her only a second to throw out another punch. "Demi! Stop! Just stop!" Selena yelled, grabbing her hand to stop another punch from being thrown. Mandy and Dallas watched wordlessly from a bench ten feet away.
Demi fell to the ground, sobs making her shake violently. Selena fell to her knees, grabbing Demi's hand and pressing her shirt to the bleeding knuckles. "It doesn't hurt.. stop it.. leave it alone.." she mumbled, trying to pull away.
"No, you stop trying to argue with me on this.. let me see it," Selena replied, moving her shirt to look at the scraped and bleeding knuckles. "You can't just go around punching trees when you get upset, you know.. they have feelings too," she said, smiling in spite of her mood.
Demi snorted, looking up at her. "I'm sorry. I didn't know my mom was going to react that way.. I didn't know she would tell me I couldn't see you and I sure as hell didn't know that she was going to find ways to make me doubt you.."
Selena watched her, knowing there was more to be said.
"But.. why did you just leave that day? Why was that it? Why did you not try harder to get me?" she asked.
Selena took a deep breath. "It was the look on your face when you told me to leave. You had this.. look.. the pain in it. I guess part of me thought that I was the reason you were hurting so bad. And the way that you sounded. Demi, you sounded so.. scary.. it scared me. I felt that you wanted me gone, even if you didn't realize it. And then once I got home, and everything sunk in.. I found it hard enough to get out of bed in the morning, much less deal with trying to get past your mother to see you.."
Demi closed her eyes, shaking her head. "Sel, I am so scared right now. I am sixteen, and I am in love with my best friend, which is a fact that drives my mother mad. I don't know what to do, and I don't think I ever will.. but I never want to walk away from you.. I don't wanna hurt you like that again.. but my mom.."
"Live with us," Mandy said, walking over and extending a hand to help Demi up from the ground. "Tell your mom that if she cannot accept you, that you are going to live with people who can. Then live with us," she whispered.
Demi placed the last box in the Escape, closing the back door as Dianna pulled into the driveway. She watched, her hand clutching Selena's, as her mother turned off her car and headed over to them. "Do I have a right to ask what is going on here?"
"I am moving in with Selena. Unlike you, Mandy and Brian accept us for what we are and what we have together. If I live here, I have to be miserable. There, I have the freedom to actually love my girlfriend. I have no intentions of ever coming back here, not even for a visit."
"I can still make your life a living hell," Dianna growled, her face inches from her daughters. "I will never accept this. Ever."
"Don't you get it? I don't care if you do or not. This is what Selena and I have together. We have a love that you cannot tear apart again. It worked once, but that was it. If I have to move two thousand miles from you so I can be happy with her, I will."
Dianna stopped, the anger on her face turning to hurt as she realized that this was the moment she feared. The moment when Demi grew a backbone and would finally stand up to her. The moment she would lose her forever.
"I'm sorry, and even though I know that you will never apologize for how you acted, I forgive you.. because you are my mother, you raised me, and I love you. I always will, even when I say I don't. But I love Selena, and I love everything she means to me, and it breaks my heart that you cannot see that."
"So this is goodbye, then?"
"Yes, it is. Goodbye," she whispered, letting go of Selena's hand so she could climb into the passenger seat. As Selena drove off, Demi rested her head on the window and watched her old life fade into the distance in the mirror before she reached for Selena -- her new life.
Demi turned the laptop screen towards Selena before leaning back on the couch, watching her read the page.'Demi Lovato Comes Out, Also With A Word of Advice For Parents'
This is something that has been a long time coming, but I only now have the courage to say it.. to acknowledge it. As we grow up, we are taught different things about right and wrong. The right -- going to school, getting good grades, making friends, going to church in some cases -- are the ones the parents only focus on for small periods of time. The wrong, that is the basis of everything.
In my case, my mother raised me to believe that homosexuality was a sin. One punishable by an eternity in hell. She always said that it was a choice. But I met someone, and this someone changed my life. She was there for me whenever I needed a shoulder to cry on, and she still is to this day.
Months ago, my mother forbade me from seeing my girlfriend. And I, letting my mother think for me, listened. I cut off all contact with her, and I kept everything I was feeling inside. I didn't take the two seconds to defy my mother and think about how much I was not only hurting myself, but how much I was hurting the one person who loved me more than anything in the world.
It took the concern of my older sister and my girlfriends mom to help me come to my senses, and to make me realize what I had been fearing in my heart. I am a lesbian. It was so hard to come to grips on it due to my mother force feeding me my feelings for so long. When I finally took a step back and was honest with myself, I realized the truth.. and I realized that there is nothing wrong with the truth. I am the same person I have always been, but now I have the freedom in my mind to be happy with the person I have loved for almost my entire life.
I know there are parents out there that will read this, and will want to shelter their kids from behavior that they deem inappropriate, but I have to stress to them.. don't. Instead of sheltering your child from all that you think is bad, let them be exposed. Let them make their own minds up on subjects. If you shelter and hold back, it will only make it harder for them in the long run.
Let them have the freedom to think and to learn new things. Let them have a world open to them, and not just a world that you deem acceptable. And, most importantly, if your kid needs to talk.. talk.
Selena closed the laptop, tears threatening to fall from her eyes. "Well?" Demi asked.
"I have never been more proud of you than I am right now," she whispered. "To have the courage to do that.."
Demi moved closer to her. "All you have to do now is come out, and then we can pretty much get away with kissing whenever we want," she mumbled, leaning her face closer to Selena's. "Admit it, you know you love kissing me."
Selena smirked. "That isn't the only thing I love doing to you," she replied, moving the computer from her lap before straddling Demi in one fluid motion. "I can think of about eight things I want to do to you right now."
"I'm all yours."