Eleanor read the National Enquirer with a heavy heart. Aiden Riddley’s and Vivianne Westlake’s broken engagement had hit the front of practically every gossip magazine in the world. It had been only five days since the disastrous party and Eleanor had barely left her bed since. Her phone was flashing red with missed calls and the post was piling up by her door. The only time she had left the warm comfort of her bed was to buy all the magazines she could find with Aiden and Vivianne on the front cover.
Every article had said the same thing; their engagement was broken off last night at the famous La Nourriture restaurant because of Vivianne’s affair with a mysterious lover. Aiden was apparently seen storming from the restaurant in anger, leaving Vivianne alone and crying to pay the bill. The identity of this mysterious lover was the question on everybody’s lips and Eleanor dreaded the day they all found out.
Sadly, that moment came two days later. This time, according to People Magazine, Vivianne was seen with co-star Russell Sterling at the very same restaurant that she had broken off her engagement only two days previously. Eleanor could not help but find this horrendously tacky of Vivianne and almost pitied the poor girl for her lack of class. The magazines were spilt on their views of Russell Sterling, the mysterious lover. Some said that it was unfair of him to break up the ‘It Couple’ of the decade, whilst others claimed that this was an even better couple than before. Eleanor still felt her heart wrench whenever she saw a photo of them together, her eyes would fill with tears at the sight of their names and her lips trembled whenever she heard them mentioned on the radio. She could not live her life like this. She could not stand to feel sad whenever she saw Russell and Vivianne together. She had to forget about him! Eleanor eventually concluded that it was about time to stop buying the stupid gossip magazines and move on with her life.
She had to forget all about Russell for good.
So, with a growing sense of purpose, Eleanor threw out all the magazines, answered all her missed calls, read through her post and got along with her life without Russell Sterling.
Eleanor had managed to go a whole month without hearing a single word about Vivianne and Russell and she was incredibly pleased with herself. She had even signed up for a fresh film written by a new, up and coming script writer, who was said to be the new Richard Curtis. Her life could not be any better. It was with only a small amount of trepidation that she got ready for Avalon’s Knights premiere. She had been shopping a few weeks earlier for a new dress and ended up choosing a blue satin number, which she thought she did not look half bad in. She had pushed back any thoughts or daydreams about Russell commenting on how beautiful she looked and continued making her hair and makeup look astounding.
As her limo pulled up at the premiere, Eleanor took a deep breath. This would be the first time she would see any of the cast and crew members since the end of film party, she had to be strong. Journalists and fans screamed at her as she excited her limo, shoving film posters and photos at her, asking her to sign them. She signed the first couple but then gave up as it was getting harder as the crowd surged at her. It was then that the camera’s started flashing. Eleanor was practically blinded by the bright lights, but smiled none the less.
Eventually, she was left alone as more famous people arrived on the carpet. She ran her hand over her hair and smoothed down her dress. It was only then that she allowed herself to look for Russell. Her eyes found him almost immediately, drawn to him like she always had been. He stood a couple inches taller than everyone else looking incredibly handsome in his tux. Just like the first time she had ever seen him, his skin gleamed and his dark hair caught the light perfectly, and considering he had never been to a red carpet event before, he handled it like a professional.
Eleanor smiled; she had been truly blessed the day she had seen Russell Sterling walk out of that grotty theatre. Unconsciously, she took one step towards him before faltering. A beautiful blond wearing a striking scarlet dress that flattered her figure, had materialised at his arm with a dazzling white smile and a twinkling green eyes. Vivianne Westlake. Eleanor’s heart plummeted and she felt like she was going to be sick. Vivianne put her arms around Russell and they posed for some photos. Eleanor could not take any more of it; seeing their smiling faces just made her feel worse. Who was she kidding anyway? She wasn’t happy; she had never felt lonelier before in her life! Without a chance to change her mind, Eleanor picked up her skirts and ran through the crowds, ignoring all the people calling her name. She looked up and down the teeming streets before choosing a random limo and clambering in.
“Please, take me home.” She begged the limo driver, tears streaming down her face. The limo driver took one look at her and started his engine. Eleanor thanked him but did not think he really understood what she was saying because her crying was making her hiccup and choke. She did not care that her makeup was probably smeared across her face, or that her hair was coming out of its neat chignon that took her hours to do; she just wanted to be home and away from all this heart break forever. It was time to make the most important decision of her life.
She was leaving this city, and she was never coming back.
Russell stepped out of his limo, his insides tying themselves up in knots. He had never been more nervous in his life! He walked onto the red carpet, and was instantly knocked back by the screams of crazed fan girls and the flashes of the paparazzi’s cameras. If there was one thing he hated in his new life of fame, it was the paparazzi. They followed him everywhere.
Russell had decided that that was one of the main reasons he and Vivianne had not lasted very long after their secret affair had gone public. Vivianne had thrived under the paparazzi’s cameras, whereas Russell just wanted to be left alone. They had had arguments regularly about whether they should go out and be followed or just stay at home and have a quiet night in. Of course, Vivianne always wanted to go out and threw a tantrum until she got her own way. Russell had quickly grown sick of her childish ways and suddenly could not stand the spoilt brat. They had only broken up a week ago and Russell could not have been happier. Sure, he was not completely free of the paparazzi, but most of them had left him alone after realising he was not having any more forbidden affairs.
Although, for now, Russell smiled cheerfully at the camera’s and posed whatever way the fans asked him to. He may have looked at ease to outsiders but his body was still wracked with nerves. He was gradually getting into it, when a photographer from Us magazine asked him for a photo with his co-star, and now ex, Vivianne Westlake. Russell nodded and smiled pleasantly, but really he was cursing the tabloids for not caring what kind of stress they put actors and celebrities under. Russell felt even worse when Vivianne wrapped her arms around him and smiled brightly, acting like she was still in love with him, when they all knew she was probably off with a new lover. He returned the smile, but inside he was screaming at her to leave him alone.
Fortunately, the paparazzi were distracted by a commotion going on behind them. Russell turned around just in time to see Eleanor Astolat in a stunning blue dress, pushing her way through the crowds, with tears streaming down her face. His mouth worked quicker than his brain, and he called out to her before he had time to even think.
“Eleanor! Eleanor, wait!” He yelled loudly, but she either did not notice or she ignored him. He quickly untangled himself from Vivianne’s arms and raced after the crying woman.
The crowd had closed around her and everyone was shoving to get a closer look at what the hubbub was. He had not realised it until now, but he had been feeling oddly friendless since the filming had ended and he had broken up with Vivianne. He had found himself strangely drawn to his old work place, The Golden Treasure Theatre, as if he might see Eleanor drive by again. He never did though. Now that he had seen her again all the fun times he had had with her at the studio came rushing back, the times at the buffet table, the articles, the jokey flirting. Only now they were tainted with the events of the end of filming party. He could not escape her broken expression as he told her that he loved Vivianne, even though at the bottom of his heart he knew that he did not. He wished he could turn back the clock and tell her that he loved her too, and that he thought she was the most perfect woman in the world.
Russell finally burst from the crowd only to find the streets empty of people; it was like she had vanished into thin air. He looked down the road, but he could only see limos arriving and leaving. He searched around the crowds of people just in case she was still there. He looked all around the surrounding areas; he even missed the film because he was determined to find her.
But it was hopeless.
He had missed his chance.
She was gone forever.