You are on page 1of 6

Chapter 1

The image on the screen gave me chills.


I knew Savannah Vanderpool. She was a beautiful former Miss Teen Miami who had branched out to movies. Wed taken some modeling classes together when I was in middle school and although I didnt talk to her much anymore, we kept in touch through Instagram and Twitter. It wasnt often that I gave other girls props. But Savannah had earned hers. She was Beyonc, Ciara, and Meagan Good rolled up into one. A class act, thats who Savannah was. Was. Because this chick I was looking at right then, was anything but classy. She looked like a crackhead, meth head, and dope fiend rolled up into one. Savannahs eyes were sunken, almost like her face was swallowing them. She had dark circles around her eyes and her face was taut and dry. Her skin was sagging, looking like it was just hanging on to her bones. Her once-beautiful blond hair was stringy and the dark roots were showing. The only modeling she could do now would be in a just say no drug ad. Maya, my director, Manny, whispered in my earpiece. Go! Youre live!

R E S H O N D A TAT E B I L L I N G S L E Y

I caught myself. I didnt usually let anything get me off my game when I was in hosting mode at my talk show, Rumor Central, but seeing Savannahs picture had definitely left me speechless. Wow, I guess you can say Im a little stunned myself, I continued, turning my attention back to the camera. If you knew Savannah Vanderpool like I knew Savannah Vanderpool, youd be just as shocked. Wed gotten the story about Savannah being arrested just minutes before I was going on the air. My producer, Dexter, had handed me a sheet with some limited information and told me to wing it. I had no problem with that because dishing dirt was what had made me so popular on Rumor Central. I was even used to dishing dirt about my friends, especially because I was usually the one who had dug up the dirt. Even though Id stopped airing my friends dirty laundry, I had no problem digging in other celebrities backyards. I had to. Since I started Rumor Central four months before, it had become one of the hottest gossip shows in the country. We were now shown in seventeen major cities and my popularity was through the roof. Celebs as big as Usher and Rihanna called me when they wanted to slip out a little gossip, and other celebrities tried to become my best friends to keep their dirt off the air. So, a little scandalous story never shocked me. But this picture of SavannahI wasnt ready for that. This is just in to the Rumor Central studios, I continued, so we havent been able to get all the details, but rumor has it that this mug shot is from Savannahs arrest last night after she caused a scene at the Sports Illustrated reception. Apparently, she arrived to the event high, dazed, and acting out. Witnesses say she was actually in a psychotic-like state. Organizers saw her and refused to let her go on stage. Were told Savannah was so high that she took off all her clothes and began running through the party screaming and crying as she destroyed everything in sight.

Real As It Gets

I took a deep breath as an earlier photo of Savannah as Miss Teen Miami flashed on the screen. I continued. Our sources tell us Savannah was high on K2, a hyped-up version of Kush, the popular synthetic drug sweeping the country. We dont know much about K2, but youd better believe that Rumor Central is all over this story and well keep you updated. Im your girl, Maya Morgan, and well be back right after this. I tossed to the break and motioned for my new assistant, Yolanda, to get me some water. Usually, we kept it light and gossipy on Rumor Central. I didnt get all deep into stories, and this was exactly the reason why. These kinds of stories were just too much. You okay? Yolanda asked as she handed me a cooled bottle of Fiji Water. I took a sip of the water. Yeah, just trippin over that picture. I glanced over at the photo, which was still up on the monitor. Id seen Savannah about six months before and she had looked fine. How could someone get like that in just a few months? Dexter came over to me on the set as Yolanda scurried away. Great job, Maya. I got some more details. Apparently, this K2 is more powerful than Kush, and its getting really hot among celebrities. It looks like spices, or potpourri, and they say it was created in China or Korea as a plant growth stimulant. Its about ten times more potent than meth. Just wow, I said, shaking my head again at the picture. I knew some celebs that dabbled in drugs, but judging from the way she looked, Savannah had done a lot more than dabble. I just cant believe that shes fallen off like that. Do you know Savannah? Dexter anxiously asked as he ran his hands through his head full of bright red hair, something he did whenever he was excited. I mean, personally? I figured you did since you know everybody.

R E S H O N D A TAT E B I L L I N G S L E Y

Dexter was right about that. Before I was on-airfirst as one of the five members of the Miami Divas reality show, then as the host of my own showI was already at the top of the food chain as the leader of Miamis It Clique, as one magazine had put it. In fact, that was why Id been approached to do the reality show in the first place. Miami Divas hadnt done as well as theyd wanted, so theyd canceled it, fired the other four Divas, and given me my own show. That had been the smartest thing since the invention of the Internet, because in no time, I became the go-to chick for all the latest celebrity gossip, dirt, and entertainment news. Rumor Central had exceeded everyones expectations and had even been picked up by networks in several other cities. My BFF, Sheridan, had been one of the original Miami Divas who was fired, and that had led to a whole lotta drama, but wed squashed that and were back to kickin it. I couldnt say the same about the other busters from Miami Divas. Shay, Bali, and Evian still had stank attitudes about the way everything had gone down. (They claimed wed had a pact to stick together and I sold them out by taking my own show. As if any of them wouldve turned it down if the shoe was on the other foot. Whatever.) Bali didnt even live in Miami anymore, and he still let me know he was mad with messy text messages, all of which I just ignored. So, do you know her or not? Dexter asked again, snapping me out of my thoughts. I knew he wasnt asking out of concern. He was probably trying to see if I could get some kind of inside scoop. Yeah, I know her. Or, at least I used to know her, I replied. The Savannah I knew would never allow herself to look like that. I pointed at the screen. The research department is trying to see if we can find any other celeb arrests behind this drug, Dexter said. I didnt get it because drugs were whack. Anything that took me off my A-game, I didnt need to be doing. And as

Real As It Gets

fabulous as I was, I didnt need anything messing up my flawless bronze skin, long, all-natural, soft brown hair, and perfect Pilates-toned body. I was a quarter-piece (because a dime just didnt do me justice). So, no way would I ever let some kind of drugbe it weed, X, coke, or anything elsetake that away from me. Savannah used to be the same way. Was K2 powerful enough to make her change her mind? I glanced at the picture again. Obviously, it was, because Savannah had basically thrown her life away for it. And that, I would never understand.

Related Interests