~~~~~ 6 MONTHS LATER ~~~~
"A toast to finally being done with this film! Through all of the pitfalls and setbacks and script changes, we have finished this once and for all! Now we've got like six more months before the premiere, but you all have already done your parts so thank you and wish us luck!!" Jack, our movie director, makes a toast at our party to celebrate the last day of filming.
Michael places his hand on my lower back, motioning for me to walk with him. I walk in front of him until he pats my back, motioning for me to stop walking. I stare at my shoes as he pulls the director to the side.
"So you were just exaggerating about having six more months of prep time before the premiere right? I mean, there is no reason why it should take that long, as much as I have done to move this along." Michael says, sounding aggravated.
"Well Jackson all of the 'help' that you have offered these past seven months have actually pushed us back. Script changes, cast changes, producer changes, not to mention I'm the sixth director. All I'm saying is, it will take a miracle for us to be done before that. We dont even know what the movie is supposed to be about anymore." Jack says, lighting a cigarette.
"Well Jack I'd be happy to make another director change if that meant an earlier release date." Michael warns.
"Why you tryin to push the date up anyways? How does it help you in any way for this movie to come out a month or two earlier?" He asks.
"That's my business. Your business is to get this out as soon as possible. I dont want to hear anymore of this 'six months' business." Michael says, grabbing my hand.
"Lady Jackson. Do you understand how creating a film works? Because your husband here has no idea how long it takes to process film, edit, and make it ready for theaters." Jack says to me, clearly challenging Michael.
Instead of speaking for me, Michael looks down at me, waiting for an answer.
I look at Jack. "If there is a problem and you cannot release it earlier, than I'm sure you know we can find another director that will. This is my movie and I want it to be out as soon as possible. If you serve no other purpose than to fulfill our needs, seeing as this is OUR project, then we have no more business together." I explain, the same warning in my voice.
"But.. Jackson.." He tries to compromise.
"Get it done Jack." I say, turning around.
Michael smiles, kissing me on my cheek. "I've taught you well darling. You might get a special treat tonight." He whispers in my ear.
I just stare at the exit, wanting to get out of here as quickly as possible. Michael is talking to Kenny as we make our way home.
"Ken, stay with Esmeralda. I have a flight to catch. I want my best security here to take care of my wife." Michael says to Kenny as we get out of the car.
"Sure thing boss." He says, shutting the car door.
"I love you darling. Stay safe." He says, blowing me a kiss and rolling down his window.
The car pulls off and Kenny shakes his head. "This is the first I've heard about this 'flight'. I can only imagine who he is going to harass." He says, chuckling.
I just walk to the porch, ignoring him. He grabs my arm before I can open the door.
"Hey, Esme, what's wrong with you? You've been acting so different, so detached from the world." He says, a concerned look on his face.
"Why does it matter? Is my mood affecting your paycheck?" I ask, snarky.
"Well yes actually, seeing as I get paid to protect the both of you and if any of you have problems Mike will come right to me." He says.