When Lena reaches the room, she shrieks in awe. The room is absolutely beautiful. There is a queen size bed in deep hunter green, a cherry desk, a green overstuffed chair, and her very own bathroom. The first thing on her list is to shower. She looks at the clock, "Four thirty. Good I have plenty of time to get ready." She showers and then dresses.
Picking out what to wear to meet The Beatles is certainly not an easy task. She tries on all combinations of clothes. Green skirt, white shirt. Black shirt, brown skirt. She finally decides to wear the patched up bell-bottoms and the green shirt. The shirt wasn't unlike the one she owned in the year 2000, it is v-necked, flared sleeves and is adorned with embroidery.
She returns to the bathroom to brush her teeth and apply makeup. Lena remembers what her mother always tells her about social engagements that go on at night, "Heavy on the eyeliner and lip gloss."
She releases her damp hair from the towel and brushes it thoroughly. She takes two strands from the base of her head and ropes them around her head so it holds the rest of her hair back securely. Since hair dryers are scarce, Lena lies on the bed and pulls out the book and starts to read.
An hour later, there is a knock on the door. Lena looks up and sees the time, "It's seven! He's here!" She runs into the bathroom to check how she looks in the mirror. Her hair is dry and wavy and she stuffs the lip-gloss into her pocket. She takes her jacket from the chair and takes a deep breath before she opens the door.
Paul McCartney stands before her with a faint smile upon his lips. His brown hair is shiny and his clothes are perfectly pressed. Paul is wearing a red shirt, no tie, black pants and jacket, "Alo Lena!"
She smiles as she removes the key from her pocket and locks the door, "I'm ready." He winks and nudges her toward the elevator.
"Lena, you look lovely. Did you get some rest?"
Lena nods her head yes, even though she really couldn't allow herself to sleep. "Paul, listen. I really appreciate everything that you have done for me..."
Before she could finish Paul waves his hand, "None of that now, luv. Tonight we have fun." They exit the elevator and walk out the doors to Paul's car. When they are both in, Paul drives off.
Ten minutes later, they arrive at a tall brick house.
Lena turns to Paul, "Is this your house?"
Paul nods, "Yes. Do you like it?"
Lena looks to the house again in a wistful manner, "It's wonderful."
Paul watches her for a moment, then taps her on the shoulder, "Are you ready? The lads are waitin'."
Lena turns, looking rather panic-stricken, "They're already here?"
Paul can't help but laugh at her wide green eyes, "Oh come off it, Lena. You're not scared, are you?"
Lena answers nervously, "I'm afraid so. I'd never thought I'd be meeting them, let alone you. I never thought that I would make it to London, either."
Paul pats her shoulder reassuringly, "Come 'ead, Lena. The lads will love you." Lena gives a weak smile and looks to her hands, which are shaking at a near uncontrollable rate.
He exits the driver's sides and opens Lena's door.
She hesitantly steps out and falls a few paces behind Paul. They reach the front stoop and Paul pushes the door open. He takes her by the elbow and leads her into the front room. Lena looks left and right. She doesn't see any Beatles. Instead she sees a large white streak bounding toward her. A giant sheepdog lands on her chest, pummeling her to the ground. Lena looks into the dog's hidden black eyes. She knew that this was the famed Martha, the same dog Paul wrote the song "Martha My Dear" for. Of course, Lena has to act surprised in case Paul says anything because the song would not be released for another year or so.
"Martha! Let the poor girl be!" Paul pulls Martha off Lena, who gets on her knees and pets the overzealous animal. Paul observes as Lena rubs Martha's ears, "You like dogs, do you?"
Lena pats Martha on the head, "Sure do. I've had a few myself."
Lena is still engrossed with the sheepdog when a familiar voice comes from the kitchen, "Paulie, is that you?" Before he could answer, Ringo and George stroll into the living room. Lena looks up and immediately feels dizzy. Paul, seeing her sway to the left, grabs her arm and helps her to her feet. Ringo looks at the scene rather curiously; eyebrows raise and disappear beneath the shaggy mop of his hair.
George has a very content look on his face, "Paulie, is this your date?"
Lena laughs out loud, "Date? Hah!" She turns to Paul, "Did you hear that?"
Lena sees that Paul looks a little surprised, "Well Lena, you kind of are."
Lena swallows the lump that has clotted in her throat. Date? She feels kind of weird about this. Sure, she liked and adored Paul, but she knows who his soul mate is. Lena definitely doesn't want to interfere with that. Lena remembers the matters currently at hand and tries to look comfortable and collected.
Paul puts a hand on her shoulder and nudges her forward, "This is Anna Magdalena McGauhey."
At this introduction, Lena has to restrain her hand from swinging upwards and knocking herself comatose. Instead, she extended her arm to Ringo, "Call me Lena."
Ringo takes her hand and says, "Well, Lena. How long have you known our lad McCartney?"
Lena thinks for a few moments and smiles, "About five hours." George laughs, shakes her hand and gives her a once over, "Let me guess. San Francisco?"
Lena mentally compliments herself on fooling the authentic generation and pulling off the hippie look, "No. Actually, I'm from Richmond, Virginia."
Paul looks to her and smiles, "Would you like something to drink, luv?"
Lena nods, "Sure. Tea sounds good." Paul smiles once again and heads to the kitchen, "I'll be right back," he then looks to George and Ringo, "you two behave yourselves."
Ringo sits down, "So, do you like music?"
Lena smiles with relief and answers, "Yeah, actually I work at a record store back home."
"I just got back from India, and I met the most amazing musician. Are you interested in eastern culture?"
Now, Lena felt it necessary to show the realms of her expertise, "I think Ravi Shankar is amazing."
George looked rather astounded, "You have heard of Ravi Shankar?"
Lena nods with enthusiasm. This whole coming from the future thing has its advantages. If there was one way to get on George Harrison's good side, it is to sing the praises of Ravi Shankar.
Then Ringo asks the obligatory question, "So do you play anything, Lena?"
Lena begins, "Well sort of…" Before she could finish her sentence, Paul interjects from the kitchen, "Don't let her fool ya, fellas. I found her wandering around Abbey Road with her guitar case like a starving artist."
Paul backs through the door carrying a tray with four cups. As he sets the tray on the coffee table, he says, "She says that she sings better than she plays, but I just think she is trying to be humble."
The other Beatles nod. George smiles, "Don't worry Lena. A few days with Paulie and he'll have you singing. It is inevitable. The hounding is relentless!"
Lena tries not to grimace and decides to change the subject, "So, um, are you all working on anything right now?"
Of course she already knew the answer. "Penny Lane" and "Strawberry Fields Forever" would be released the following February, then on to **SGT. PEPPER**.
Paul shakes his head, "Sure are. You should hear some of the stuff. It's amazing." Lena's eyes nearly popped out of their sockets. The prospect of hearing the Beatles play LIVE in front of her turns her stomach with excitement.
Paul was rattling on about chords when the front door opens. Lena freezes and tries to steady herself for the impact. Sure enough, John Lennon in all of his psychedelic glory enters the room. He walks to the couch where the four of them sit, "'ello mates. Mind if I join you for a spot of tea?"
Paul nods and John takes notice of Lena, "Hey Paul, is this another one of your birds?"
Paul sees Lena looks at him in dismay and he chuckles, "Well, sort of. John, this is Anna Magdalena McGaughey."
Lena can't control herself and pokes Paul in the ribcage. Paul releases a slight yelp and corrects himself, "But call her Lena."
John smiles in Lena's direction, "Cor, I like this one. She'll keep you on your toes, McCartney."
John sits and extends his hand toward her, "Nice to meet you, Lena."
Lena didn't know whether to faint, cry or hug him. She can't believe that she is seeing this. All four of the Beatles together and getting along! Lena just smiles and tries to stay cool. As they sat at the coffee table, Lena couldn't help but feel crazy. She was only twenty-one years old and already having delusions of grandeur. It was truly a sad thing.
Lena is lost in the moment when Paul taps
her on the elbow, "We're going to the club, luv, to
meet Maureen and Pattie." Club? Maureen and Pattie?
Then Lena remembers that Maureen and Pattie are Ringo
and George's wives. Paul walks to the closet and
pulls out the black peacoat. He helps Lena slip it on
and all four Beatles escort her out the door.
Written by Cinder Whittier. May not be reproduced in any form, by any means, without the permission of the author. Permission may be obtained by e-mail.
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