Chapter 14: Karaoke (part II)

"Come on Jordan! You've got your own band for goodness sake!"Said

"Uh, I play drums, I don't sing"

"Spoilsport! Go on, it won't hurt you."

"Fine! But don't complain if it's bad, I'm warning you, I'm a drummer for a reason!"

And he made his way over to the machine and dug through the very large collection the Andersen's had accumulated over the years, until he reached a dilemma. Jordan's emotions were arguing over the perfect song choice:

"Yo dude, you can't pick that one, you embarrassed Riley with that one last year, you recall bro?"

"Yeah, I hear you man, so not back in black? Shame really…"

"Sorry Sadness, but a dude can't get embarrassed twice!"

Fear put in his two cents, and suggested shook me all night long.

"Whoa dude! We can't, we totally flunked it at practice when we covered the singing for Jim the day he was sick"

"Hmm, then what about this?" and Fear had Jordan hold up one of the tracks.

"Anger, whatcha say bro?"

But Anger just shrugged his shoulders,

"I don't care what we pick, so long as we don't screw up, 'cause someone will pay" To which Fear gulped and turned to the others.

"Guys?"

"I'm in one hundred percent!"

"Pfft, yep"

"Can I just take a nap?"

"That totally settles it then, Let's go..."

"Well here goes nothing." Jordan took a deep breath and began the track, waiting for his time to begin.

"And I would do anything for love, I'd run right into hell and back. I would do anything for love, I'd never lie to you and that's a fact."

He took another breath,

"But I'll never forget the way you feel right now, oh no, no way. And I would do anything for love, oh I would do anything for love. I would do anything for love, but I won't do that. No, I won't do that"

And the bass guitar on the track got kicked up a notch, and Jordan got into full swing.

"Some days it don't come easy, some days it don't come hard. Some days it don't come at all, and these are the days that never end. Some nights you're breathing fire, some nights you're carved in ice. Some nights you're like nothing I've ever seen before or will again"

Jordan slowed the pace of the next verse, getting ready for the big build up.

"Maybe I'm crazy, but it's crazy and it's true. I know you can save me, no-one else can save me now but you"

"As long as the planets are turning, as long as the stars are burning, as long dreams are coming true, you'd better believe it"

And he looked Riley in the eyes for a split second, looking away right after as he sung the most important lines of the whole song:

"That I would do anything for love. Oh I would do anything for love Oh I would do anything for love, but I won't do that. No, I won't do that"

But Jordan had made Riley's evening just by giving her a stolen glance. He didn't think she'd notice, but she did. And across Riley's mind sky, shooting stars were zipping past headquarters, illuminating all the mind world in a spectacular display. If Riley's emotions were not busy playing the track through the Jukebox, or ogling over the brief eye contact Riley had just shared, they would have seen the brilliance of the soul stars gleaming through the windows. The first time a shower like that had ever happened and all the emotions could do was sigh and smile at the console display.

"Ahh, did you see? His eyes are all dreamy and…"

"Oh my god! Sooo cute!"

"Are you sure he was looking at us in that way? Could be a false ala- OW!"

"Shut up Fear" said Anger as Fear rubbed his arm better "let's be dazed by the beauty please? Or do you want to be rammed into the cupboard again?"

"Nope, no cupboard"

"Guys, be quiet, he's almost done" and the boys heeded Joy's quiet words as Jordan continued into the last few lines:

"I won't do that. No, I won't do that. Anything for love, but I won't do that"

"Boy that song is long! But I could listen to it again and again with his voice"

"Damn right Joy, but we won't. Now clap?"

"Oh right yeah, woo! Yeah! Go Jordan!"

"Oh right yeah, woo! Yeah! Go Jordan!" Said Riley to Jordan as he smiled awkwardly at the room. He may be more sociable around Riley, but he certainly hadn't changed much around Riley's parents.

Meanwhile in Jordan's headquarters, Fear and Joy were fighting over the console,

"For crying out loud, that was scary as hell, let me-"

"No, we had a good time, I think it's my go you doofus"

"What!? You've gotta be kidding me! In front of Riley's parents like that? What were we thinking?"

"It doesn't matter. What matters is the stupid hat you're wearing. We had fun and everyone's clapping, just shut up"

"Thank you Anger. He's right Fear, you're hat is stupid."

"Oh, I'm gonna get your stupid butt someday"

"Yeah right!"

"Watch me"

Luckily, Jordan could function reasonably well without such varied input, otherwise he'd be stood facing his friends like an idiot whilst his emotions argued. He sat back down in the vacant seat next to Riley and gave her a hug.

"Right then, who's next?"

"Urm, I think you are Mom"

"Nuh uh, no way!"

"Come on, you'll be great!"

"Maybe later"

"Aww!" went the room as Jill politely declined the invitation for the moment

"Well, I'll go later with Mr Andersen later after the next one if you want"

"Yeah, go Mom!"

"Wait, why do I have to do it?"

"Come on Bill, for the kids?"

"Alright, but as your Mom said, after the next person."

And with Jordan, Gracie, Rose and Danielle having been and gone, the list of remaining acts looked ever shorter. Riley quickly counted up who has been, then gave a list of who was left.

"So, we've got me, Mom, Dad and Jasmine left to go. Wanna have a go Jasmine?"

"Uh, I'm totally up for it Riles, but don't you go laughing when I can't hit any of the notes."

"Whatcha going to sing for us Jasmine?" Asked Jill very politely.

"Oh, that's a good question, hold on…" She looked through the CD cases until she found the perfect one.

"This one is The winner takes it all by ABBA. Good song if I do say so myself."

"Wow, I haven't heard that one in years!

"Good luck Jas"

"I don't wanna talk, about things we've gone through. Though it's hurting me. Now it's history. I've played all my cards, and that's what you've done too. Nothing more to say, no more ace to play"

"The winner takes it all, the loser's standing small beside the victory. That's her destiny."

"I was in your arms, thinking I belonged there. I figured it made sense, building me a fence. Building me a home, thinking I'd be strong there. But I was a fool, playing by the rules"

"The gods may throw the dice. Their minds as cold as ice. And someone way down here, loses someone dear"

"The winner takes it all, the loser has to fall. It's simple and it's plain, why should I complain?"

"But tell me does she kiss like I used to kiss you? Does it feel the same when she calls your name? Somewhere deep inside you must know I miss you. But what can I say? Rules must be obeyed"

"The judges will decide, The likes of me abide. Spectators of the show always staying low"

"The game is on again, A lover or a friend? A big thing or a small? The winner takes it all"

"I don't wanna talk if it makes you feel sad, and I understand, you've come to shake my hand. I apologize if it makes you feel bad seeing me so tense, no self-confidence.

"But you see; The winner takes it all, The winner takes it all…And fade out! You like it?"

Jasmine sat back down after a round of applause went around, and Jordan leant across to her and whispered

"Hey, congrats girl, you nailed it."

"Thanks J, you did good too."

"Pfft, I'm in a band, I'm supposed to be good. You, however, were pitch perfect, even if I prefer rock"

"Modest aren't you?" Jasmine teased

"Yes, yes I am" Said Jordan, momentarily forgetting the definition of modest, which made Rose, who overheard the last bit crack up.

But the Karaoke was two thirds of the way through, and two more acts were up for their performance of the night. As Mom and Dad were debating which song to do, Riley's emotions were getting pumped up for the song, getting ready to pick the most relatable yet easy to sing song they could think of.

"Hey, how about that one? I like them" Said Sadness.

But Joy disagreed "Arctic Monkeys? Nah, I'm okay, skip the song"

"Are you sure we should be using the Jukebox like this?"

"Fear, nothing's gonna go wrong, I promise."

"But-"

"I promise!"

"Okay then Joy, how about this one?"

"The Safety dance? Please! It's not bad but try for something better, not so old"

"Hey guys, I think we should play this masterpiece, just sayin'"

"Meh"

"Anger!"

"What? All I said was meh. It's not like I called Disgust's pick absolute trash, that would have been out of line."

Disgust was fuming by what Anger had said, all she wanted to play was some One Republic. But they had already moved on, and after Joy put them into teams to discuss, they had almost reached an agreement.

"Okay, so have we picked yet? Fear, you've discussed with Sadness, whatcha come up with?

"Erm, I think we went with Michael Jackson's Billy Jean"

"Uh huh, and what about you two?"

"Well, obviously I didn't give Anger a choice, not that he wanted one anyway…"

"Okay, so what is it?"

"Toxic by Britney Spears. Yes, you're welcome by the way"

Oh my God, HaxE finally updated after almost 5 months away, leaving you all hanging? It's been way too long and I feel like I've let the community down so much D:

I guess I owe you guys first and foremost an apology. I have been overly mean in not updating for you all, and I think you might have grown tired of waiting. If you want to metaphorically strangle me, you're more than welcome and I'll accept the backlash for it. Now an explanation!

EXAMS! The curse of college kids worldwide have been plaguing me since May. But that's not all. I've been depressed a little, I've been preparing for a Pokemon tournament between my friends and I've been looking around universities ready for next year. But I've broken up for the summer, and should at least release another chapter, if not two, over the next six weeks.