On the Road to Stardom

A/N: Thanks for the reviews! On with Chapter 3! =D

Chapter 3: Managers and Meetings

Complaints filled the hallways of John Hughes High School the following Monday. Students were comparing their final exam schedules with each other, whining if they had two exams on the same day or five exams in a row. Some were throwing fits while reviewing because they could not find a way to remember key details in the citric acid cycle for biology, nor half angle proofs for the math exam.

Rocky, CeCe, and Tinka were walking through the English wing of the school, going over their exam schedules. However, this was proving to be a bit difficult because dozens of students were crowding around the girls, commending them on their astounding performance last Saturday on Shake It Up! Chicago.

"You three were incredible on Saturday!" a blonde girl commented, excitedly.

"Thank you very much," Rocky answered, kindly, before turning CeCe and saying, "Our Spanish exam is on Wednesday at noon, got it?"

"Yeah, got it," CeCe replied, with a nod of her head. "Are we still on for that history study party this Friday at one?"

"I didn't know you three could sing!" a brunette guy exclaimed, looking fascinated at the sight of the girls. "You three were on fire!"

"Of course we were!" Tinka answered, playfully, then said to CeCe, "Could we make the party at three instead? I have a two and a half hour chemistry exam that starts at noon."

"Can I have your autographs?" a brunette girl asked, eagerly, thrusting a notepad and pen towards the female trio.

"We're flattered, but perhaps later," Rocky replied gently, before saying to Tinka, "Three is fine with me."

"I'll order pizza for us for dinner that night," CeCe offered, with a smile. "Sound good?"

"Hey, hey!" a blonde guy, a member of the school's track team, called, appearing in front of the girls, "what do you say to a movie date? Any of you interested?"

"Thanks, but no thanks," Tinka told the athlete, before turning her attention to CeCe and saying, "Pepperoni and mushrooms?"

"You got it!" CeCe chirped, excitedly, then whipped her head around to face the athlete and cried, "No, not to the date!"

Many students continued to gather around Rocky, CeCe, and Tinka, fawning over the local celebrities. The female trio were getting frustrated, as they just wanted to get to class and away from the teenage paparazzi.

"Hey, coming through, coming through!" a stern, female voice yelled.

Rocky, CeCe, and Tinka breathed a sigh of relief when they spotted Dina forcing her way through the crowd surrounding them. She had one hand on a headset on her head, while the other was gripping a clipboard, which she was using to shove people aside.

"Move aside, trio manager coming through!" Dina announced, finally appearing next to the girls.

"Hi, Dina!" CeCe greeted, happily. "Glad to see you!"

Dina smiled at CeCe, then turned to the crowd of students and said, firmly, "I'm the trio's manager. Any further questions will be fielded by me."

"Are you going to be singing on TV again anytime soon?" a redheaded boy asked the trio, curiously.

"That will remain to be seen, now be off, all of you!" Dina demanded, her tone serious. "The ladies have important business to attend to!"

Many of the students groaned, but obeyed the bossy Latina. The crowd dispersed and everyone started making their way down the hallways or into nearby classrooms. Some shuffled off to the side, just to stare at the instant celebrities for a bit longer.

"Thank you," Tinka told Dina, gratefully. "I was about to lose my mind and betwinkle their heads."

"No problem!" Dina answered, cheerfully. "Anything for my clients."

"Don't get me wrong, I'm thrilled to see you, Dina," Rocky began, "but, since when did we appoint you as our manager?"

"You didn't appoint me, silly!" Dina replied, with a laugh, as she pointed behind her. "He did."

Three sets of eyes drifted behind Dina, only to widen in surprise. A smiling Ty approached the girls, along with a man whom they never seen before. However, they figured he must have been of great importance because of how well dressed he was in a grey suit and red tie.

"Ty!" Rocky exclaimed, darting forward to throw her arms around her brother. "It's so great to see you!"

"You, too," Ty replied, embracing his sister, before stepping back to hug CeCe.

"It's been too long!" CeCe cried, hugging Ty. "We've missed you!"

"I've missed you girls, too," Ty answered, turning to hug Tinka next.

"What are you doing here?" Tinka asked, enveloping the rapper in her arms.

"I'd like you all to meet someone," Ty said, after pulling back from Tinka's hug. He gestured to the man next to him and said, "This is Mr. Bartlett, head of my record label, Five Star Records, in Los Angeles."

"I'm Rocky Blue," Rocky said, offering her hand to the important man. "It's a pleasure to meet you."

"Please, the pleasure is all mine," Mr. Bartlett told the brunette, before turning to shake the other girls' hands.

"CeCe Jones," CeCe said, shaking Mr. Bartlett's hand.

"Tinka Hessenheffer," Tinka stated, as Mr. Bartlett shook her hand.

"Why don't we take this conversation further in Vice Principal Winslow's office?" Dina suggested.

Rocky, CeCe, and Tinka nodded, before following Dina, Ty, and Mr. Bartlett down the hallway, under the eyes of several students nearby.

Once in Vice Principal Winslow's empty office, Mr. Bartlett took a seat behind her desk. The four girls seated themselves in chairs in front of her desk. Ty locked the door, for privacy purposes, before taking a seat next to Tinka.

"So, what brings you to the wonderful city of Chicago and the equally wonderful John Hughes High School?" Rocky asked Mr. Bartlett, curiously.

"Oh, I was just in search of new pop stars, when Ty suggested that I watch Shake It Up! Chicago," Mr. Bartlett explained, with a smile, "so, I watched last Saturday's episode and, I have to say, I was greatly impressed by three talented girls, who could sing and dance."

"Really?" CeCe asked, excitedly. "Who are they?"

Tinka rolled her eyes at the naive redhead and said, "I believe he is talking about you, Rocky, and I, goat for brains!"

"Oh," CeCe said, grinning sheepishly.

"Well, thank you for your praise, Mr. Bartlett," Rocky said, gratefully, "but, that doesn't explain why Ty appointed Dina as our manager."

"Well, I figured Dina would make a great manager," Ty explained, smiling. "After all, you're going to need one once you three sign the recording contract that Mr. Bartlett is offering you."

"Recording contract?" CeCe repeated, shocked. "You mean...you wanna..."

"Yes, I believe you three are the next big thing in Hollywood, in terms of the music industry," Mr. Bartlett explained, smiling at Rocky, CeCe, and Tinka, "so, I'm hoping you're willing to sign with Five Star Records, and kick off the start of what will be your successful music career."

"Music career?" CeCe exclaimed, happily. "We're all for that!"

"Excuse me?" Rocky said, clearing her throat, loudly. "What do you mean by "we're"? I didn't agree to this yet."

"Exactly, not yet," CeCe pointed out. "Rocky, opportunity is knocking and it would be stupid of us not to open the door."

"CeCe, has it ever occurred to you that I have another career in mind for me?" Rocky questioned, raising an eyebrow at her best friend.

"What?" CeCe questioned, with a scoff. "Don't tell me you're thinking of going to school again, are you?"

"Well, since I worked my butt off to get into Yale," Rocky began, "I figured accepting their offer and continuing my studies in the medical field might be a good idea."

"I also might want to mention that the Illinois Institute of Art has accepted me for their fashion design program," Tinka added. "I've always wanted to design clothes."

"You do that now!" CeCe cried, exasperated, gesturing to the blonde's sparkly clothes.

"Look, CeCe, we know you've always wanted to be a dancer, a pop star even," Rocky said, "but, Tinka and I also have career ambitions of our own that aren't necessarily in the world of dance."

"Yeah, but you always loved dancing," CeCe pointed out. "Remember when you dad tried to force you to quit dance and focus on becoming a doctor, and you showed him that he should be proud of any career that you choose?"

"Yes..." Rocky answered, slowly.

"And, Tinka, you could still design clothes even with a music career," CeCe explained. "This recording contract is one step closer to fame and fortune and, with your resources and connections, you'll be able to launch your own clothing lines."

"Well," Tinka began, pondering what CeCe said, "you do have a valid point."

"So, what's stopping you from launching your music career?" CeCe asked, standing up and looking down at Rocky and Tinka. "Mr. Bartlett says we have what it takes and, if he can make Ty a big star, he can do the same with us."

"Honestly, I would love nothing more than to dance and sing for the rest of my life," Rocky admitted, "but, I always valued education and the importance of staying in school. I can't just throw that away for a chance to become famous."

"Well, Rocky, we learned the hard way with the underground Chicago tunnels that you cannot have everything," Tinka reminded the brunette scholar. "Sometimes, we must make sacrifices."

"Listen, girls, you don't need to make a decision right now about what you want to do," Mr. Bartlett told the girls, kindly. "It is clear that you all have a lot to think about before making this big decision."

"Thank you for understanding, Mr. Bartlett," Rocky said, with a smile. "We know that this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us, but we have to make sure we make the right decision, as this could impact our future."

"I completely agree," Mr. Bartlett replied, nodding his head. "Tell you what, when you three have made your decision, Miss Garcia will contact me, okay?"

"Okay," Rocky replied, with a smile. "Thank you, Mr. Bartlett."

"You're welcome," Mr. Bartlett answered, returning the smile.

"Well, we should get going," Rocky told the girls, as she stood up. "We have class to get to."

"And exams to study for," CeCe added, with a groan.

"And a big decision to make," Tinka said, getting up.

Ty and Mr. Bartlett watched as Dina unlocked the door and opened it, before exiting the office. Rocky, CeCe, and Tinka followed her, all three of them comtemplating what to do about their future careers.

Chapter 3 Up! Questions? Comments? Should I continue?

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Next chapter: Decisions and Discussions