2009-10-27: My Girlfriend


Tracy_V4icon.png Erin_V4icon.png Taine_V4icon.png

Date: October 27, 2009


Tracy stops by the set to see Erin. SCANDALOUS!

"My Girlfriend"

Afterlife Set

Everything happens to Taine, this is true. But that's not to say things don't happen to other people, as well. In fact, in today's scene, one of Llanview's werewolf pack members has a woman cornered in an old, abandoned boathouse. There are always boathouses - always. Because they're creepy, and it's easy enough to convert a soundstage into a large, mostly-empty building.

There was set work to be done. Erin's standing out from in front of the camera today, arms crossed, an annoyed expression colouring her features as the werewolf tears apart her carefully-constructed wall of boxes and carefully-placed props.

"They better get this in one take. I am not rebuilding that," she mutters, even though she's standing by with the materials necessary to piece the damn thing back together. There's a rope slung over her shoulder, which is ominous. Who needs a rope while building a set? Erin friggin' McCarty, that's who.

"Cut." The director calls when the pile is all but obliterated. "That was good, but I'd like to see it again, just to be sure. We'll work on our next shot— Back here in thirty minutes, people!"

Erin grunts.


Technically, everything happens to Kenneth Pryce, while very little happens to Taine.

Today isn't one of his days, though. Instead, he stands offstage, watching the filming and giving the direction a look, as he mutters to a passing snack guy, "Man, she's gonna need to let off some steam with her hot girlfriend after this." Or her hot boyfriend, but that part isn't to be known for public consumption.

The snack guy laughs, "You're taking this very well for a guy who seemed to be chasing after her a few weeks ago."

"What can I say, it's a stereotypical male fantasy." He grabs one of the cracker sandwiches off of the tray, and moves toward Erin. "I know how it feels. When the direction wants a second take when I'm wearing that bloody fur suit… I want to rip his head off. If only I really had werewolf strength."


This is not a familiar place to be for Tracy Strauss. She's navigating the lot like a maze, occasionally running into dead ends where she has no access — but she's hardly a lost mouse at the worst of times, and she's made her way to the set. If Erin isn't here, she doesn't know where else to look.

Dressed neatly in white pants and a tailored business jacket with a touch of casual, the blonde woman comes to stand on the outskirts of production, just off-stage. In fact, she moves in on the other side of Taine right in time to overhear "werewolf strength". Unfortunately — or perhaps fortunately — she misses everything prior. She does, however, eye a passing crew member over her shoulder. Why the hell do people keep staring at her?


"You know," Erin says to Taine, raising her hand to motion the crew onto the set, "I told you not to go out of your way to tell anyone." Her irritation is mostly with her job, even if she really does love it. It's just - her wall. That was awesome. It was a work of art! And now it's a pile of crap on the floor.

Contrasting Tracy today, Erin is wearing an 'AFTERLIFE' crew shirt and jeans. Her hair's back in a ponytail, and she's got paint on her face instead of makeup. Her eyes manage to catch her supposed 'girlfriend,' and her reaction? She chokes back a laugh. "Ah, Tracy. This is Taine. Taine, Tracy. I'll be right back."

She needs to get a copy of that tabloid! There are dozens (?!?!) around the set, so it shouldn't be that hard.


"Tell anyone what?" Taine asks, making an incredibly innocent look on his face. He may be a soap star, but that doesn't mean he can't act. Half of soap's bad acting is inexperience and bad writing. In their case they both have the experience, but the writing is terrible. "You don't want me to tell them you get upset when your wall gets messed up, I won't tell them. Done." What else could she possibly be talking about.

Oh— well. What else she could be talking about just walked in. Taine offers a hand and smiles brightly, "Hello, Ms Strauss. It's good to finally meet you."


"Uh— " Hi, Erin. Bye, Erin. Tracy shakes her head dismissively. Guess she'll wait. The woman has barely glanced at Taine and his normally charming accent until their introduction. Once she does turn cool blue eyes on the actor, it takes a moment for her to recognize him — even then, the spark of recollection is vague. She smiles, although it's with a questioning look. "Finally?" she laughs and takes Taine's hand.


They're going to be mad at her later for abandoning them to work on the wall alone. SO BE IT. This is the priviledge of the set designer! Muahaha! But really, they should be able to do it on their own. "Extra credit if you remember where everything goes," Erin shouts as she returns, flipping through the pages of a certain gossip newspaper, before she closes it. Holding the cover up so that Tracy can see, she says, "Congrats. We made the front page. Check it out."


"I heard about you from the nice tabloids, but Erin speaks highly of you," Taine admits, offering his friendly smile and Australian accent. There's even a small swish to his hair that some people might find attractive. Other people not so much. "You also made thousands of male fantasies very happy. I have a feeling the producer may want to introduce a female love interest for Morgan sometime soon."


"We what?" Tracy, genial smile in place, has absolutely no idea what's going on, but she's a quick learner. She takes the paper and it crinkles faintly under her hold as she lifts it up to make sure she's seeing correctly. She is, of course. Taine's input speeds up the learning process, but earns no points. She raises her eyebrows at him and scoffs lightly before sliding an incredulous look to Erin, pointing the paper at her. "Seriously? And people believe these."


"Oh yes," Erin says, shrugging helplessly, as if to say 'What can I do?' Real life emulates soap opera life sometimes, apparently, and she's not doing anything to stop the spreading of this rumour. Some people on set know the truth - close friends, most of her crew, Taine, but if the public believes something, there's no stopping it. It's like wildfire - hopefully that's something Tracy can relate to.

Her fingers do brush Taine's. It might as well be an accident for how quickly the contact ends, but there's a deliberateness to the action. "Anyway. I'm throwing fuel on the fire. Or, Taine is, anyway." She gives him a Look that's nowhere near as tender as that fleeting contact they just had, before reaching for the paper. "So. What brings you to Afterlife?"

Someone somewhere is giggling immaturely.


"I doubt it'll bump ratings, but it'll get them off our back for a while," Taine says, still trying to look as innocent as possible in this situation. He's only playing along because he was asked to. No other reason. It's not like he's getting much out of playing up the fantasy that he wouldn't get just thinking about it when he's alone. Part of him would rather be able to go to parties with Erin on his arm, but… alas.

"It'd be nice if people just cared about what our characters were doing and not us, though."


"I— think I'll be heading back to D.C. soon, I just wanted to…" Tracy trails off, carefully narrowing her eyes on Erin before glancing between both of the actors. "You're letting them run with this?" She points at the tabloid. Slowly crossing her arms once more, she studies both Erin and Taine, tipping her head back an increment. "Alright, I see what you're aiming for. I get it," she says coolly, logical instead of angry, which isn't to say she doesn't have her reservations. Still, she's calm. "To be honest, I know where you're coming from."


"That's exactly it," she says when Taine indicates the reason Erin's decided to let the public run with the rumour. "Too many people interested in my personal life. I'd rather direct it elsewhere. At least for now." She'll spare Tracy the tale of her interpersonal ineptness and leave it at that. It's a good enough reason. One side of her mouth quirks upward in a smile. "I can totally do a long-distance relationship. Honestly, though - and in all seriousness - I'll miss you. I feel like I was just getting to know you."

She's choosing her words carefully. If anyone's listening, they could take that statement either way.

"Just wanted to what? Say goodbye?" She came all the way here to say goodbye? Erin should totally give her rabies again, just for that. Only not. "I did want to talk to you before you go. You'll be here for a couple more days, won't you?"


"I'm sorry to hear we can't have a double date or anything. Maybe I could bring a guy friend and play up the other side of the fence," Taine says as a joke, before reaching to touch Erin's arm and beginning to back away. "I'll let you two catch up before she goes. I need to go check my fanmail box again and see what horrid excuse for love letters I've gotten today," he gives both of them a smile, flashing pearly white perfect teeth, before he focuses on Tracy. "Was really nice to meet you." And then he starts to walk off, toward the room that collects the fanmail. It's not sent to their homes, after all.


Tracy smiles at Taine as he leaves. "It was nice to meet you, too." The sentiment would seem completely sincere if it didn't sound like there should be a question mark on the end. To Erin, she shakes her head. "I'm not certain. I have more business to wrap up here but it might not pan out. I have a lot of work to do in Washington."

While there is more to say on the matter, she gestures again at the paper. "I'm not going to wake up tomorrow and read about our engagement, am I?" There is very little joking in Tracy's tone of voice. There's a glimmer of it in her eye, but she's serious more than she is kidding. Tabloids exist to be sensational.


Erin shakes her head. "No. I just want to get some of the spotlight off of me and Taine," she says. Her eyes glance around, to ensure no one's listening in. The noise her crew is making ensures that even if someone's trying, they'd never hear! With that thought in mind, Erin offers a narrow-eyed smirk toward the crew as a box crashes and splinters from midway down the pile. "Good minions," she mutters.

"I'm not going to outwardly publicise the issue. Eventually, people are just gonna start thinking Taine's jealous. If you want to do me a favour, just no-comment if anyone asks you." No yesses, no nos. People love that.

She'd ask Tracy to a more private place, but she doesn't want to fan the flames that much. "You're feeling okay today, right? I should apologise for being suspicious… But I'm not going to. I think I had every right to be, considering."


Tracy is a queen of the no-comment. She glances in the direction of the noisy crew and the crashing box before turning back. "You're a celebrity, I'm not in the same position as you. But, you're not the only one whose … relationships … need to be private. I wouldn't have picked this as a media move, but it's not bad."

Erin's other comments bring Tracy around to part of the reason she's visiting the set. "I'm fine." She shakes her head at the much shorter woman beside her, seeming sympathetic enough to her suspicion. "I know. You absolutely did. And… I didn't come to say goodbye. I came to warn you."


"I wouldn't have, either, but it works." Sometimes accidents work out for the better. Something unintentional like this is awesome, and no one will ever know that they ran to the restroom because Tracy had a momentary attack of the Rabies.

Erin does have to wonder if anyone found the pieces of that frozen flower. Maybe it was melted before anyone got to it. Still, she can imagine the 'what the hell' expression on some underpaid janitor's face when he saw that. Heh. "Warn me? About that text message? I thought we agreed we weren't gonna do anything about it." Well, Erin agreed to that. Tracy never did, really.


"Yes and no." The working crew nearby may sweep away the sounds of their voices to anyone who might overhear, but Tracy lowers hers all the same. "There's … a lot surrounding all of this. I can't talk about every detail. There's no saying someone won't try to involve you again." She pauses, suppressing a sigh and glancing from side to side before laying a hand down on Erin's elbow and eyeing her importantly. "I need to know you're serious about not replying to that message."


"It wouldn't be my life if it wasn't complicated," Erin sighs, curling her lip. Dammit. She just wanted to ignore the whole thing and get on with her life. Burying things in the sand never works, though, because something always comes around to expose them.

"Tracy, I hate the guy. If he burns, I swear to God I'll throw a party at my place and invite everyone. As long as he keeps me out of his mess, I don't have to reply to a god-damned thing. I mean, if there are people after Peter? I want as far away from that as I can get. Trust me. I have enough to work on with these morons— " She waves a hand to her studeously-working crew, "To worry about being dragged off in chains."


"It's not just Peter. But whoever sent that message obviously made the mistake of thinking you'd care what happens to him. You're right, by the way. Somehow, he survived." Regeneration. Tracy shakes her head again with a toss of long, blonde hair. Despite her determination in warning Erin, she looks a little frustrated trying to put her concern, if that's what it is, into words. "The thing is— " She smiles and and freezes up, changing tracks. "Just be careful what you say. Who you talk to. I know I sound like a conspiracy theorist, but there are people out there, like Rebel, who are capable of watching you. It wouldn't do either of us any good for someone to overhear that you'd have a party the second Peter burned."


"I've been dealing with this for a long time now," she says, not blowing the warning off, but confirming that she can, indeed, be careful if she needs to.

Erin has her own theories, namely involving the fact that she doesn't like Peter, and whoever has serious concerns as to his welfare can't be all that great, either. Still, despite what she told Tracy, she's considering contacting Rebel, just because. After all, the message did say not to contact Peter's cell phone.

Nah. It's just not that interesting.

"Don't worry. I have better things to do. I was being figurative." Erin rolls her eyes. As it turns out, she actually does care for people, though. Reaching out, she puts her hands on Tracy's shoulders, if allowed. Granted, that could all be for show, but what she says is genuine enough. "Just be careful, okay? Call me if you need anything."


Tracy doesn't move, although she does glance at one of Erin's hands before watching her as she speaks. She seems to take the words to heart, in fact, a few of her more hardened features softening, barely, in order to nod at Erin. "I'm always careful." She winces faintly at the continued sounds of the crew working on the set. "Speaking of being careful…"


"Yeah, well, if I didn't say it, I'd feel guilty later," she says, releasing Tracy's arm. That rope is still strong around her shoulder; it doesn't seem to have been put to any use, which means that perhaps it really is just for intimidation. Who knows! "Speaking of being careful, I'd better make sure no one broke anything. You can stay for awhile and watch some of the filming if you want. They'll throw you out if you ruin a take, maybe stab you, rough you up a bit, but hey, it could be worse." She shrugs. "I could be a political advisor."


Is that so. Tracy laughs for an instant. "Mm. You're right. You'd make a terrible political advisor." It might… be hard to tell if she's joking or not — or, for that matter, if she'll stay and watch the goings-on once the cameras start rolling again. She does glance to the set with a small smile. "I'll see you around."


Smiling, Erin takes a couple steps backwards before returning to her actual work, which she should have been doing all along. They will be filming here again soon, after all. "All right, if this isn't perfect, you're all working Saturday," she says, pulling a rolled blueprint out of her pocket. Would it have been easier to give them the blueprint for reference? Sure. But where's the fun in that?

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