The night had gone just as planned, without any sort of glitches and there was the fun addition of Hunter and his girlfriend getting to see the show via front row floor tickets. Alex knew he wanted to give them a great experience and help out in whatever way he could, he and Hunter exchanged a few texts back and forth to make sure they were on the same page with everything and they brainstormed a few ideas on how to make it an extra good night. Hunter had made his way over to get the tickets earlier in the day and hid them from his girlfriend until the moment of truth.
Hunter had gone to pick her up and she was under the impression that they would be going to a restaurant and then heading back to watch a movie. They went to the restaurant but afterwards once they were back in the car he finally revealed what their night plans entailed of: An Alex Milligan show. She was ecstatic, more than willing to throw away their prior plans. When they got to the arena, it seemed a little early for a concert, and that was in part for the second half of the surprise which was that they would get an insider view of the arena, home of a few Atlanta sports teams on top of being an entertainment center for such concerts. Once that was over, they also got to head backstage and that’s when they met up with Alex. Turns out she was a fan, at this point who didn’t know Thinking Out Loud as base knowledge for Alex Milligan anyway, so this was thrilling to her. They all hung out backstage for a while, played some ping pong, took turns showing off their guitar skills (she wasn’t exactly a professional but she had learned how to play a few White Stripes songs which was pretty impressive given that she knew absolutely nothing about chords) took a few pictures together and indulged in some of the backstage snacks. Alex gave some quick introductions to Christina and Jamie, and then the couple were able to head to their seats as the lights dimmed and the show started.
After the show he reunited with the duo, and wasn’t entirely sure how they ended up at what looked to be one of the only Irish pubs in Atlanta, but of all people, they were obviously the group that would find it and get there somehow. It was just going to be the musicians and crew members, but on a whim Alex mentioned it to Hunter who wasn’t entirely sold on the idea at first but when he talked it over with his girlfriend it seemed she had made an executive decision and so there they all were. There was absolutely no checking of ID's at all, they all just waltzed in. About an hour into the night, he finished quite a number on the dance floor and found himself sitting down on one of the nearby couches, nursing the beer he had just ordered. Immediately Christina and her guitarist yelled at him to get his ass back over but he was spent for the moment and so he motioned for them to keep on going and to pay no attention to his need to sit down. “I’m not young and able like you guys!” He shouted over at them. There was only so much random movements he could muster up, even under alcohol courage. Hunter and his girlfriend were busy near the outdoor patio, and Alex couldn’t help but grin at what he saw. They were leaning towards each other and laughing, it was written all over Hunter’s face that he was really into this girl and she seemed to reciprocate. As not to be a complete creeper, he turned away and just leaned back, enjoying his beer. A couple of minutes later Hunter made his way over to sit down beside him. His girlfriend had decided she wanted to dance and, naturally, Christina was the one to take her hands and twirl her around first to make her feel welcome.
“I’m going to need some of that if there’s dancing involved.” Hunter pointed to the beer in Alex’s hand.
“Yeah, maybe when you’re 21.” He narrowed his eyes down at Hunter, giving him the most serious of expressions.
Hunter seemed to notice the severity of this situation and was quick to retreat on his initial statement. “Oh, I uh. I didn’t mean that. I was just joking.”
It was then, noticing how serious Hunter suddenly got, that Alex laughed and place a hand on his shoulder. “I’m just kidding! But your face...that was fantastic.”
Hunter was tense at first from the prior shock but then loosed up, laughing along with him because of how quick to panic he was.
Alex ordered another beer from the server walking by and once it arrived he handed it over to Hunter. “Don’t tell Ione, alright? I’m trying to stay in her good books.”
Hunter nodded, a small smile escaping his lips.
Alex leaned his bottle over to Hunter’s and they clinked glasses briefly, each of them sipping on their beer.
After a moment, he noticed Hunter’s expression was still on his girlfriend who was immersed in what looked to be some sort of dance battle of girls vs boys with her and Roxy, Christina's band member, on a team vs Owen and Jamie. Hunter’s gaze didn’t falter, completely focused on her.
“You like her a lot, hm?”
Hunter snapped out of his moment, turning to shrug his shoulders in Alex’s direction as though it wasn’t that much of a big deal. “She’s fun.”
Ah, the typical I’ll play it cool card. Alex could see right through it. “She’s a really nice girl. I can tell she likes you a lot, anyway.”
Hunter nodded, not showing much for facial expressions, but potentially appreciating that reaffirmation.
“Ione was really good with putting this together.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, making sure you guys had the tickets in time and stressing how she wanted you both to have a good time and all. I got clear instructions to not mess it up. She was definitely the nudge I needed to help do my best with it, anyway, but yeah. She was great with it.”
Hunter nodded, and after a second he leaned down into his pocket to grab his cell so he could send a quick text to Ione.
hey, thanks for getting in touch with alex to hook us up w the tix. having a great time.
Once his phone was back in his pocket, his girlfriend was right in front of him tugging at his hands. “One dance, just one! Everyone’s leaving right after!”
Hunter was reluctant as ever but Alex just put his hands up, sighing, a nonverbal sign to say I can't help you here, buddy. You're on your own with this. “Looks like you’ve got to listen to her, mate. She means business.”
There were some protests, actually many protests, but then she managed to get him up and there wasn’t so much dancing as there was a couple of steps side to side as Hunter's main take on dancing but this caused his girlfriend to find it even more appealing as she placed a hand on his chest and laughed with his movements, moving her feet in a similar motion.
Alex looked on, still enjoying the moment from where he was seated, but he also took out his cell phone and went to his contacts so that he could press Ione’s name in order to send her a text.
Out with the crew, Hunter and his girlfriend came along as well. It's been a lot of fun but what's missing to make it an even better night is you x