Second Chance At Stardom

By hasu

>be anon

>film major in college

>made a couple of indie films here and there

>nothing oscar-worthy, though

>moved to LA to pursue a film career

>currently in-between jobs

>one day decide to visit the Hollywood sign

>need a little reminder to keep you motivated

>hell of a foggy winter day, even for LA standards

>drive up into the Griffith Park area in your royally fucked-up Honda Civic

>as you drive along the skinny asphalt road you see a figure enter your field of view

>the local crackheads found there way up here, too it seems

>...of course they start blocking the fucking road

>honk your horn and hope they get the message

>no response


>flick your lights on and off and lay on the horn again

>that got their attention

>the figure turns towards you

>you gaze upon the face of an impossibly pale woman

>damnit brain

>now is not the time to be replaying all of those horror films you watched

>she stops and turns towards your car

>her eyes are blue

>like the sky after rain washes away the smog

>her platinum-blonde hair is short-cropped and wavy

>she doesn't appear to be any older than her mid-twenties

>definitely not a crackhead

>not even horror movie monsters look this attractive

>you sit there in stunned silence, even as she slowly moves towards the car

>she looks like a character from a Prohibition period drama

>especially with

>"Sir, can you help me... get to..."

>her words hit you like a truck and snap you out of your stupor

>she even sounds like she's a time traveler

>you get out the car to help her

>the adrenaline warms you even through the cold and foggy LA winter

>what's even happening now

>she puts a gloved hand in yours

>her touch is freezing cold, sucking away what body heat you have left

>the scent of gardenias hangs in the air

>"Thank you for coming to help me, sir. I've been stuck up here for who knows how long now... I tried to get help but no one would listen to me, and—"

>the pale woman throws her arms around you in a hug as she begins to sob

>you find yourself consoling her as she cries into your shoulder

>she's so cold, but you can't find it in you to push her away

>maybe you'll file a missing persons report sometime soon

>but first, have to get out of this area before someone sees you and gets a wrong idea

>after she calms down you invite her to come into your car

>heater's been on blast the entire time, eating through all of your gas

>much better than it is outside

>one thing this shitty car does right

>ask her for her name

>"My name is... My name is... Lilian. Lilian Caty Talbot."

>call 911

>automated system tells you that all operators are busy

>of course, always something happening in this damn city

>it'd be hours of hold time before you could get a call in anyways

>the smell of gardenias has completely filled the car

>"What are you waiting for? Why were you muttering to yourself?" Lilian asks

>does she not know what a phone is—

>oh shit she doesn't know what a phone is

>a smartphone, anyways

>a while later you tell her of your plans to get her to a police station

>she doesn't take to kindly to that, and asks if she could stay with you instead

>guess you'll have to bite the bullet and work for two now, at least until you can help her get back onto her feet

>get home late in the evening

>spend the rest of the day getting Lilie (your nickname for her) acquainted with your home, especially the modern contrivances

>...this is going to take longer than a day or two

>as she sleeps on your couch-turned-makeshift bed you decide to look her name up on the internet

>you can hear the haunting film score in your head as you look at the results

>all of them pointed towards one thing

>a woman named Lilian Caty Talbot died in 1938

>her dreams of Hollywood stardom were crushed under the heel of the competitive film industry at the time

>after losing her acting job she went into a deep depression

>she ultimately died by committing suicide, jumping off of the Hollywood sign

>you also find out that her story has been turned into an urban legend

>people have reported seeing a "pale, ghostly lady" in the area around the Hollywood sign

>speaking of pale, you feel the blood drain from your face as it all comes together in your mind

>you turn to the sofa and take a good look at the sleeping Lilie

>she's pale as a corpse, but her not-so-modest chest rises and falls as if she's alive and well

>Hollywood loves a good comeback story, right?

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