"Autumn, Lyle, where'd you guys go?" Nick asked after the show, well knowing the answer.
"We sat down and had a little discussion. You know, to catch up with each other,
reminisce about old times."
"Like your daughter?" Autumn went pale and thought she was going to pass out. Then
she was overcome by anger.
"Oh, so now youre evesdropping on me!?!? Thanks a lot!"
"I heard you scream from a mile away something about your daughter. I wasn't
"I'm sorry Nick. We need to have a talk. I haven't been completely honest with you, or
"Autumn, I don't understand."
"Go gettum, Margret," Lyle said, loud enough for Nick to hear.
"Margret? What the fuck?"
"Meet me in the room would you? I'll be right up. First, I have a little unfinished
business to take care of with my friend Lyle."
"You better have a good explanation for all this Autumn, or Margret, or whatever your
"Just go, please." He went off, figuring he'd at least give her a chance to explain herself.
Autumn opened the door to her and Nick's hotel room. Nick was sitting on the king sized
bed, flipping through the 12 channels on the TV. She gulped and walked in. "Nick, before you
say anything, I want to tell you the whole story."
"What's this story?"
"It's about my past. I did, I was really stupid, and I guess I still am for not telling you, but
now I'm coming clean."
"Well, I'm gonna start from scratch. I was born in Chicago and lived there with my mom
and dad. They named me Margret Lynn Pagel. When I was 8, they got a divorce, my dad
wanted to be a musician and my mom didnt like it. It was too unsteady of a job, he couldn't
support us both on that. So he moved to LA and my mom and I stayed in Chicago. I chose her
because I knew she'd take good care of me. Well, when I turned 15, she died of brain cancer. I
then moved to Los Angeles to live with my dad and his new wife, Tracee. I had been working on
my music one day and she came into my room and told me to knock it off and said I had no
talent. Well, from that day on, I hated her with a vengence. I had a boyfriend who was 19, so I
spent all my time with him at his apartment. When I turned 17, I decided to move out and live
with him. That boyfriend's name was Lyle." He looked at her, wanting to say something, but
knew he shouldn't.
"Well, Lyle had a minimum wage job and I had no job, so I worked as a hooker for a
while until Lyle found out. He didn't like me sleeping with other men. So then, I lied about my
age and got a job at a strip joint. I used the name Autumn Crane there, so my dad would never
find out. I missed him, but there was no way I was going back. I would've gotten another job,
but since I had dropped out of school, no one would hire me. Well, then I turned 18 and decided
I wanted to get my GED. I saved some money, went to night classes and got it. But during that
time, I also became pregnant. Well, no one wanted a pregnant stripper, so I got a job at a fast
food joint and worked as long as I could. I gave birth to a heathly baby girl, 6 pounds, 12
ounces, 20 inches long, and we named it Danica Lee. I knew I couldnt handle a child so I
wanted to put her up for adoption, but Lyle was determined to keep her. I think he thought if he
kept her hed keep me. Well, one day, I said I was going to work, but I took a different route, and
kept driving. I drove and drove. I didn't pack, I didn't take any extra money, I just drove. A
couple days and many fuel stops later I reached Tampa. I decided I never wanted to have to go
back to Lyle and Danica, so I legally changed my name to Autumn Marie Crane. Then I
auditioned for a local theater, because I knew I could kind of act, but it was a musical. I sung
and one of the guys there was from Ulrich. He offered me a scholarship there and a position in
the choir. I took it, figuring it was the best thing for me. Well, you pretty much know the rest."
They sat there in silence. "I...I don't know what to say Autumn. Margret."
"Autumn, it's legal."
"Okay, Autumn, I just wish you would've told me this before. I would've understood."
"You don't understand. For the last four years I've lived a lie. No one knew. No one.
Not even Erica knew. Somehow Lyle must have figured out Autumn Crane was me and came
back to haunt me or something. I didn't mean for any of it to happen! I just, was young and
stupid! I smoked too much crack or something, it all sounded like a good plan when I left.
Fool-proof. Now, now I, I..I don't know...." She started crying.
"I have to go for a walk." He stood up and left the room. Autumn just hoped that hed