I wasn’t being ungrateful really, it’s just the night wasn’t exactly what I thought it was going to be. Everyone had been talking so loudly and then when it happened, the were a million eyes on me, I don’t even want to think about the cameras. My manager had hissed “Smile!” when the camera had paned to my extremely surprised face, eyebrows raised and eyes wide. I’d only come along as It was one of the first major events I’d been invited to, I mean it was The Brit Awards. Besides my mam, who let’s face it didn’t always understand my offhand panic attacks, and thought I was being ridiculous when I said it’d make me too anxious, had ignored me and brought me a rather expensive dress. I’d won small awards before, nothing like this though, but when I did I stayed at home, recorded a message. I just wasn’t one of those people that left the house very easily.
My mam hated it, but I guess since well... it was The Brits I’d let her convince me assuring myself I wouldn’t of actually won despite being nominated. So when they did call my name, I was a little more flustered than normal. And normally it’s pretty bad…
I managed to get myself onstage, thank people, awkwardly laugh about how nervous I was and then practically run off stage. It wasn’t one of the big awards and it was early on in the night so I know people won’t have tuned in yet, or at least less people will have, I cringe. When I get offstage, I turn back just to look at the sheer size of the audience, gasping for breath as I felt the oncoming tide of a panic attack.
A hand clenched my shoulder, “You’ve got to carry on down this carpet, so the press can get your photos with the award.” A woman with dark brown hair and a pink dress says to me. I try and stutter out an apology, my breath stolen. She waits a couple seconds before raising a perfect brow. “Miss, you need to move before the next award is presented, there's a time schedule”
“I just, Shhhi. I, I Just need --- a sec. Second” I get out, my arm going to grab her shoulder as I begin to hyperventilate, my heart constricting and my ribs crying out in pain. “Miss look I know that was nerve wracking but we really must get on!” She says raising her voice slightly which only made me panic more.
Suddenly a man was stood in front of me, “It’s okeh, breath, look at me breath” He continued, telling me in and out with whispered words, the woman beside us tapping his arm every 5 seconds.
“Sir, are you her date, walk down with her. Whatever is the issue she needs to go, NOW”
He turned away from me, a venomous piercing look crossed his eyes at her before he blinked it away, offering me his arm. I still felt like my organs were fumbling, my brain hadn’t caught up yet.
“Sorreh, just. Urm, hold on to me, smile and it’ll be over in a minute.” I nod, “Wait..” He says turning towards me and licking his thumb before sweeping it under each of my eyes, to collect the small amount of mascara that has began to pool when my eyes started watering.
“Okay” I nod again, still silent, my jaw aching from clenching down. I breathe in and we walk through the following curtain towards where the press is.
“Look over here doll!”
“Is that your boyfriend”
“Is Mr Turner your date”
“Is is true you fell out with Halsey”
“LOOK over HERE”
“Alex look here”
“When did you two start dating?”
I nod and smile clenching the man’s arm, I probably look like a lunatic, and I currently feel as if someone disconnected my eyes, and ears from my brain. I can’t hear or see anything it’s just pure blur.
The man propels me and curtly says “No Comment” occasionally to the press.
We get to the end and he ushers me through another curtain, where bright fluorescent light and plain walls cover the scene. Another woman raises an eyebrow and tilts her head to the man, telling him to follow the signs to the winners dressing rooms. As we begin to walk I hear her say under her breath “Why do they allllllll do drugs, in a place like this as well”
The man abruptly stops when we get round the corner, I look up at him, the haziness beginning to lesson as we walk away from the burning business. “I’m sorreh luv, I don’t actualleh know yer’ name”
“Stage name’s Honey”
“Well Oney’ let’s get you to you to tha dressin’ room”
He eventually pulls me into a room after about 5 minutes of looking at all the doors in the corridor. “Reyt, sit down luv”
I sit, head in hands as I hear him potting around the room. I groan into my arms, realising too late I’m smudging my make-up. “This has to be the most embarrassing thing that’s ever happened to me” I chuckle out, only a small sob getting caught in my throat.
“Don’t worreh when I first started out, I was havin’ a panic attack weekleh, always scurryin’ away from people”
I go to reply before realising I have no idea who I’m talking to, I look up “Sorry I've been so out of it the past….” I trail off trying to look at my wrist where a watch usually sits. “bout half an hour” he offers.
“Who are you?”
“Sorry god that sounds kinda rude, I mean, thank you so much, what’s your name?” I continue.
He chuckles a little, “Alex but call me Al”
“And, I… I don’t mean to sound rude, but do you… work… here?” I say a worried look crossing my face.
A grin shoves over his face, his lips gazing upwards and his eyes brightening. “Naw I’m from Arctic Monkeys, the band…?”
“Oh yeah I know who you are, urm I bet you look good on the dance floor, right…. Wait aren’t you guys nominated, don’t you need to be out there” I tell him eyes growing wider.
“Yeahh probableh, but you kinda needed some elp’ other wise that woman would of shat on ya’ plus I guess I don’t realleh like that kinda fing anyway”
“Well I’m really thankful, and I’m feeling a lot better now, I’m sorry I’ve been an inconvenience I hope you haven’t missed your award”
“I kinda ope’ I ave’” he says with a cheeky smile, “Why don’t ya come an sit with me an the lads, the girls are at tha table as well”
“Are you sure? I don’t want to intrude” I say although I’m already getting to my feet, angling myself towards the mirror so I can check my makeup.