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What Glamorous Lives They Lead

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Dan groans as he opens one eye groggily to survey his surroundings. Great, he has no idea where he is, and he has a pounding headache. He slowly blinks and brings a slightly shaking hand to his forehead, which is creased in pain, and gradually sits up, a wave of nausea hitting full force. The other hand flies to his mouth, he can feel the bile and undigested Chinese from last night working their way up his throat. He staggers to his feet, desperately scanning the room for a toilet. He catches sight of one and sluggishly makes his way over to it, tripping over the other bodies in the room in the process.

As he lowers his head over the toilet bowl, he realises he isn't wearing any jeans, just his boxers. Fucking brilliant. Who did he end up screwing last night? He retches and heaves for a couple of minutes before any actual vomit comes up, and when he’s finished, he collapses against the wall behind the toilet, an arm hanging over the bathtub. God, he needs a smoke right now.

After a quick search of the flat for his jeans and some Panadol, he make his way outside the building, leans against the wall, and searches his jeans pockets, thankful that he’s still got his wallet (with everything, thank God, still in it) keys, phone, cigarettes and lighter. He sticks a cigarette between his lips, lights it with fumbling fingers and breathes in the thick aroma like his damn life depends on it. He breathes out, and leans his head back, letting it thump dully against the brick wall behind him, wondering how he always manages to wake up hungover after a wild night of drinking, undoubtedly sex, and – he looks down at his arm – yup drugs. There it is, the fresh pin-prick of the needle, the veins prominent against the surface of his skin. Dan usually likes to snort his cocaine, but these party animals weren't having it.

Just as he’s exhaling again, his phone rings. He fishes it out of his pocket and sighs when he sees the caller ID. Why did he have to party the night before a day of work?

“Yeah?” He says wearily into the phone, taking another drag of the cigarette.

“S’up, Bear!” Answers his manager cheerfully, completely and blissfully unaware of Dan’s situation.

“What can I do for you, Jonah?” Says Dan unenthusiastically, raking a hand through his dishevelled hair, the cigarette still between two fingers. He’s still not ready to stub it out yet, still hanging to the last of the burning embers, so that he can suck the last bit of life out of it.

“I need you to come in for a shoot at 1:30, threesome, with that dude Kandy Kane and that chick Stazy Jizzy. Shouldn’t take too long, couple hours, you know the drill. Don’t be late!” And with that he’s gone, and Dan’s muttering an empty “See ya.” into an empty receiver. He takes the last drag of his shrivelled cigarette, stubs it out against the concrete pavement with his sneaker and he’s hailing a cab.

* * *

Dan shows up at the studio, showered, hair freshly straightened, having just swallowed a painkiller and downed a bottle of water. He takes off his jacket and throws it over the back of a chair and makes his way over to hair and make-up.

When he enters the little room, that when he hear the screech of “Bear!” and a petite, bleach-blonde flings herself into his arms.

“Hey, Staze.” He smiles weakly down at her, patting her awkwardly on the back. She’s crushing him right now, and those ridiculously long fake nails of hers are digging into his shoulders. He’s legitimately wincing.

“Yo, Staze!” Dan looks up to see an overly, tanned, buff and well-groomed man making his way towards them. “Let the poor guy go!”

Stazy reluctantly lets go of Dan, and her bottom lip immediately juts out in a pout. She’s a couple years older than Dan, and he’s worked with her before. However, she’s like a five year old, with fake boobs, a fake butt, fake hair, shitloads of make-up and a ferocious sexual appetite.

She turns towards this new guy and playfully slaps him on his huge arm, her nails leaving three-second white lines across his bronze skin, before disappearing. They laugh, her high-pitched giggle and his loud, booming guffaw resonating in Dan’s aching head.

“Oh, Bear!” She says, turning back towards Dan, a hand on his arm, which she actually has in a vice-like-grip. “This is Kandy Kane. Kane, this is Cinnamon Bear.”

Dan shoots him a fake smile and shakes his hand.

“Nice to meet ya, man.” He says, not meaning it one bit.

“Likewise.” Says Kane. “Hope I don’t pound into you too hard!”

And with that he cackles and slaps Dan across the back, Stazy joining in with his laughter. Dan has fucked many unpleasant men and women in his time in the porn industry, but he had just hoped today he was gonna get lucky. No such luck.

“See you in there.” Says Stazy as she squeezes his arm in what he thinks is reassurance, not that there’s any arm left to squeeze in Stazy’s death-grip. He doesn’t need any damn reassurance – he’s the great Cinnamon Bear – slightly sweet, yet slightly spicy, not to mention that’s he’s a bear in bed. He smirks to himself and heads over to where the make-up artist is waiting for him. Let’s get this done and over with.

* * *

Dan steps out of the studio, leans over and touches his toes and throws his arms back in a much-needed stretch. That was quite the workout, and he’s in desperate need of a shower now. He runs a hand through his hair, the tips slightly curling beneath his touch. He shakes his hands out, he can feel the sweat dripping down his back. He’s not stepping foot on the Tube like this, he’s gonna take a cab. And he’s definitely not gonna resort to using the grimy showers at this dingy studio. Fuck, he needs a smoke right now.

He hears the door open behind him just as he’s placing the cigarette between his lips. He winces at the obnoxious laughter of laughter of Stazy at that idiot “Kandy Kane”. He lights his cigarette and breathes in a deep drag, relishing and savouring the bitter taste.

“Oh,” Exclaims Stazy, just noticing Dan. “Hi, Bear!”

Kane then takes notice of him too.

“Hey man, can I have a drag?” He asks a little too flirtatiously for Dan’s liking. Great, he’s hitting on him.

“Here, mate, just take the rest of it. I gotta run.” Says Dan, handing over the barely touched cigarette.

Kane’s face noticeably falls. “I’d love to take you out for a drink sometime –“

Dan is cutting him off before he can even finish the sentence. He’s been through this before. Yes, they might have just had sex, but it was strictly professional, and let’s face it, pretty much fake. Dan’s moans certainly were. He knows Stazy’s moans and cries are practiced to perfection and then exaggerated beyond belief. That’s just how it is in this industry.

“Listen . . . Kane, let me stop you right there. Let’s not mix up our work and our social lives, okay? You seem like a cool guy, but I wouldn't be into you that way. Sorry, man.”

And with that, Dan is lighting another cigarette and strolling away, leaving Stazy and Kane speechless behind him. He taps the cigarette lightly with a delicate forefinger and the ash cascades behind him, as his other hand goes through his somewhat curly, brunette locks, a smirk on his face. That may have seemed heartless, but to Dan it’s just another Day in the Life.

Chapter Text

Dan lets out a grunt of frustration as he rips the shirt off over his head and irritably sifts through the pile of clothes positioned chaotically all over his bed. This process is usually effortless to him. The getting ready, the picking-out-of-clothes, the natural sexiness that he is perceived as. However, tonight is just not working for him, and it’s infuriating as hell. He doesn’t know why he can’t just grab a simple, but effective form-fitting printed tee and a pair of skinnies. His mind just isn’t in the right place, he hasn’t even drunk, smoked or snorted anything yet. That’s for later.

He finally decides on the tightest pair of jeans he owns, a plain T-Shirt, a bomber jacket and a pair of hi-tops. Keeping it casual. He straightens his hair beyond reason and smirks at himself in the mirror. There’s the Cinnamon Bear he knows.

* * *

The lights are low and dim, the music loud and the bass low and thumping. Dan is already grinning in a drunken stupor and stumbling over to the bar, tripping over the laces on his trainers.

“Hey,” He says to the pretty barmaid, an automatic flirtatious tone overtaking his voice. He swings himself up onto one of the barstools and throws an arm over the counter. “Can I have a tall glass of you?” He then proceeds to wiggle his eyebrows suggestively in a futile attempt to look sexy.

The barmaid stifles a laugh. “Um, yeah, sure honey,” She giggles. “Now, what’ll it be?” She winks good-naturedly.

“Straight-up tequila, please.” Dan chuckles.

He takes the drink from her and that’s when he feels the eyes on the back of his head. He may be drunk, but he’s not drunk enough to recognise that unsettling sensation. He pauses, takes a sip of his drink, and takes a casual look around the club. His gaze stops on a pair of stunning blue eyes staring back at him, and quite intensely at that. He almost chokes on the burning liquid as he swallows it. The beautiful face that the gorgeous eyes belong to gives him a smirk and a raised eyebrow, and Dan’s eyes can’t help but widen in surprise. Has he been recognised? Does this striking-looking man with ebony hair even know who he is?

Dan takes a deep breath through his nose and composes himself. Fine then, he can play at this game too. He walks over to where this man is sitting, slightly swaying his hips, sending him a smirk of his own. He stops in front of him and looks down at him, the man staring right back up at him, with the same expression, an arm swung nonchalantly across the back of the plush couch he is sitting on.

“This seat taken?” Dan asks, making sure to slightly draw out his words.

“Go ahead, sit down.” Says the man, and Dan nearly melts at how deep his voice is.

He sits down and turns towards him, slightly surveying this attractive man. He’s wearing black skinny jeans with black lace-up dress shoes. As well as a suit jacket over a plain T-Shirt. Interesting. Dan raises his eyebrow, waiting for him to introduce himself and to explain why he was being stared at.

“Ricki Blitz.” He says, and holds out a hand. It clicks in Dan’s head. Ah, so this guy is a fellow porn-star and they’re going by their porn personas.

“Cinnamon Bear, but most people call me Bear. You may have heard of me.” Dan says as he shoots him a cheeky wink and shakes his hand.

“Actually, yes, I have.” Ricki laughs.

“Is that why you were staring at me?” Dan smirks.

Ricki laughs again. “No. I may have a job for you and I just wanted to make sure it was you.”

Dan nods in understanding. “A job, huh? What kind of job?”

Ricki leans into Dan’s ear.

“A job with me.”

Dan shivers involuntarily.

“Oh, really now? And what would that entail?”

Ricki leans away from him and smirks.

“I think our mangers should meet and discuss it first and then we can chat about the details and whether you’re into it or not. But let’s just say the pay would be very good.”

Dan narrows his eyes slightly. “Ok, then give me your manager’s phone number and details and I’ll pass the message on.”

Ricki shrugs and hands over the required information.

“So, Ricki,” Says Dan, taking a sip of drink. “How come I’ve never heard of you before?”

Ricki lets out a laugh. “Well, let’s just say I’m hitting thirty soon and I’m suited to a more mature audience. A different and usually younger crowd like to watch you. Teenage boys and girls and the odd married couple with weird fetishes and creepy old men and cougars. But, then there’s me. Sophisticated socialites, cougars, sugar-daddies, doms, subs, you name it. So that’s why I get filmed fucking those kind of people for the entertainment and pleasure of those kind of people I aforementioned.” He shrugs, and takes a gulp of his own drink.

“So, you must be rolling it then.” Dan states in awe.

“Well, I’m not gonna lie. But, I’m sensible with my money. Sure, I have a nice car and apartment and I get my hair done at a fancy salon. But I do put it away.” He pauses. “I know how you blow your money though, no pun intended.”

Dan stares at him, both taken aback and offended.

“Excuse me?”

“You spend your money on weed, cigarettes, coke, partying, alcohol, clothes. If you take the job I’m offering you, I could teach you how to be wise with your money. Also, you do know that shit is gonna destroy you and you’re gonna die young looking like a deformed zombie?” He says bluntly.

Dan shrugs uncomfortably, lowering his head, knowing the older man is right, but wanting to put across like he doesn’t care. “Live fast, die young. Whatever, man.”

“Don’t give me that shit.” Ricki sneers.

Dan’s head snaps up. “And don’t you fucking lecture me! We just met for fuck’s sake!”

“I’m just trying to help you, kid.” Says Ricki, his eyes and voice softening.

Dan sighs. So, he only sees him as a kid. This man suddenly became a lot less sexy and attractive. Dan stands up sharply, slightly spilling his drink in the process.

“I don’t need your money and your fancy job! Fuck off, man! Enjoy your high life!” Dan snarls at him.

And with that, he stomps away childishly, leaving a stunned and speechless Ricki behind.

* * *

“Come on, man,” Dan protests. “Give it to me. I can do one more line!”

The guy standing beside the half-conscious Dan hesitantly taps a little more white powder onto the silver tray in front of him. Dan uneasily gets up onto his elbows and rolls up the fifty pound note. He snorts up the line of cocaine in one go, and falls back into the chair, waiting for the effects of the drug to kick in. He closes his eyes and lets out a slow breath, ignoring the itching sensation in his nose.

Dan’s eyes shoot open, the euphoric buzz taking over his body. His head falls back as his eyes roll back. He lets a low groan.

“Dude, did you just orgasm?” The dealer snickers.

“Nah, man. You’d know all about it if I did.” Dan replies offhandedly.

That’s when his head snaps up.

“That asshole is watching me again. I can feel it.” He growls.

“What?” The dealer asks, confused.

“I can feel those ridiculously blue eyes on me.” He whips his head back and forth and narrows his eyes, certain that he’ll find the gorgeous eyes of Ricki Blitz staring back at him.

“Look, dude,” Says the dealer nervously. “You did way too many lines than you should have. And you know the side effects of coke is paranoia, restlessness and anxiety. As well as obviously euphoria, but look, there is no one watching you. So sit down, try and act natural and wait for the effects of the drug to wear off, ok?”

“I don’t give a shit about side effects. That fucker is watching me!”

“This better not get back to me,” The dealer lets out an exasperated sigh. “I’m fucking out of here.”

Dan is attempting to look inconspicuous and discreet by hiding behind the chair he was sitting on when the dealer leaves. Dan doesn’t notice because he too busy trying to spot Ricki in what’s left of the crowd of near-empty club.

Suddenly, he feels something wet on his top lip. He doesn’t entirely notice it at first, but then the stinging kicks in. Dan slowly puts his hand up to his and it comes away red.

“Oh shit!” And the red liquid starts to drip.

He stumbles to his feet, a troubled expression on his face with no idea what to do. That’s when the blood starts flowing. Even though he’s drunk and high as hell, Dan knows he’s trouble.

“Fuck, fuck, fuckity-fuck!” He’s losing blood, it’s gushing down his chin and dripping onto shirt.

He’s had nosebleeds after snorting before, but never like this. He’s had sneezing fits and headaches, but this is new and scary. He darts over to the nearest toilet, the bright light blinding, but terrifyingly eye-opening. His mouth and chin is red, and small rivulets have formed on his neck and onto the collar of his shirt. He places his hands on either side the sink, looking away from the mirror, beginning to faint. Whether it’s from the loss of blood, or the effect of too much alcohol and cocaine, he doesn’t know. Probably both.

He slides helplessly to the floor, beginning to hyperventilate as his eyes begin to droop closed.

“Somebody fucking help me, please.” He whimpers feebly, the stinging in his nose refusing to subside.

That’s when none other than Ricki Blitz strides in, and the minute he catches sight of Dan, his composed, somewhat expressionless face turns to a look of horror and alarm.

“Bear?” He manages to get out, the shock overtaking his voice.

Dan nods weakly.

“Oh, holy shit!”

Ricki finally snaps out of his distressed stupor and rushes over to Dan.

“Ok, Bear.” He says to him, laying one hand on the side of his bloodied face and the other on his opposite shoulder. “We gotta get you outta here.”

Dan doesn’t have time to respond because everything has already gone black. The last thing that remains in his mind is those stunning blue eyes.