Jonah Arizona waited just offstage, listening to the crowd chant his name. He had been doing this for years but he still got butterflies every time he performed. Closing his eyes, he took one last deep breath. The lights went down and he made his way to the stage.
Chants turned to joyous screams as they saw the teen idol approach the mic stand. He waited for the cheering to die down before he spoke. “Welcome, everybody,” he said, scanning the crowd. “I’m truly glad you could all make it tonight to this very special performance. It’s a very important night for both me and you. This will be the last time I take to the stage.” There were shocked gasps from every corner of the club. A couple of people shouted “no” but he held up a hand to calm them. “I’ve been doing this for years and I’ve loved every minute of it. It’s thanks to all of you that we find ourselves here tonight. So let’s make it a good one, yeah?” They screamed louder than before and began chanting again: “Jonah! Jonah! Jonah!”
After the show his manager, Teleram, burst into the dressing room. The crowd was waiting outside the club, hoping to get one last glance at Jonah as he left. If they slipped out into the back alley, however, they could reach the limo unseen. Jonah nodded and made his way outside, swatting at some gnats mid-air. He almost tripped over a man huddled under some cardboard boxes, causing him to drop his sunglasses. He left them behind and frowned as he got into the limo.
“Congratulations, sir,” the driver said as Jonah made himself comfortable. “Thanks,” Jonah replied, his voice hoarse from the concert, “though I suppose this means you’re out of a job.” “Not really,” the driver said. “I’ve got something lined up. I’m going to be doing weddings.” Jonah smiled wryly in the back seat at that. There wasn’t much conversation for the rest of the journey as both men clearly had a lot on their minds.
He got home and said his goodbyes and thank yous to Teleram. “I couldn’t have asked for a better manager. I couldn’t have asked for a better friend.” Once inside, he looked in the mirror. It was all over. Jonah Arizona would never play another gig. With a sigh, he removed his long blond wig and peeled off the special bald cap that covered his beard. His double life had come to an end. From now on he was just BSam, the minister.
The following day BSam made his way to his day job at the church. He was still upset that he had hung up his wig for the last time but he could only pretend to be a teen pop sensation for so long. Now was the right time. Just before he got inside the church a woman in a long green dress stopped him. “I’m sorry,” she said. “I know this is a lot to ask, but I was hoping you could help me out.” “What is it?” BSam asked. “Well I organised a date with my high school sweetheart before I remembered about the wedding today and now I need to run back and forth between the two, changing my outfit and keeping up appearances at both. So do you think you could stall for time?” “You’re living a double life,” he said wistfully, tears at the corners of his eyes. “I guess so...” she answered. “I’ll do it,” BSam said, clasping the woman’s shoulder. “Good luck.”
It was a sign, surely. This woman had emerged from out of the blue and into his life, coming to him to ask for help with her double life. What were the chances that she would appear the very day after Jonah Arizona’s final performance? This was fate. He took out his phone and called up Teleram. “I was wrong,” he said as he looked up at the giant stained glass window above the altar. “This is the life I was meant to lead. Jonah Arizona is back on the scene.”
The wedding passed in a giddy haze, though he made sure to honour his promise to the woman by stalling for time whenever possible, asking a number of questions to the congregation.
“If anyone has a reason why these two should not be wed,” BSam said hoarsely, “let them speak now or forever hold their peace...”