She went to the concert by herself. She was too embarrassed to ask any of her girlfriends to go with her. They would think she was
crazy ier. She couldn’t explain her obsession, even to herself. She was too old. Wasn’t his type. She told herself every excuse in the book. But every night she dreamt about him. Every day she watched his face, as she listened to his voice online. All 17″ of him. She wasn’t prepared, however, for the physical impact of seeing him in person…. She had saved up for a good seat and felt like she was staring right up at him. Goose bumps ran up and down her spine, and she felt light-headed, like she would faint. Her heart froze up and she forgot to breathe….and then he seemed to smile right down at her as he sang “I get you through it nice and slow, when the world’s spinning out of control”…. Pretty soon she couldn’t tell the reality from the dream. Things started to get a bit hazy after the concert….
She found herself standing backstage, along with the usual groupies. Someone asked her something, and she stuttered, “I’m with the band”. They smiled knowingly, and walked on by. The band was winding down, having a few drinks. Billy, his buddy and guitarist, handed her a glass. She took a sip, and grimaced. Then she heard the voice. His voice.
“I’m drinking the brown liquor tonight, my friend”, he said. “If that doesn’t suit you, I’m sure I could find some white lightning”, as he grinned, showing his boyish cockeyed toothy smile that melted hearts. She looked up, and then around, wondering. Is he talking to HER? He clinked his glass to hers. She could not move. She was mesmerized. His brown eyes crinkled at her, as he leaned his long, lanky frame on the doorway. He put his free hand up on the other side, trapping her in between.
“What’s your story, sunshine, haven’t seen you around here before”, he said. She lost her words, and downed the contents of her glass, hoping for some liquid courage. She came up almost choking on the taste, but managed to hold it down. As it burned fire in her belly, she could finally speak. She leaned forward, and put her hand on his vest. “I came here for you”, she said.
“Couple more of these”, he said as he tipped his glass full of brown liquor to her, “and you might just get your wish little lady”.
He whispered in her ear, “You’re like an angel, got me feeling like a devil, and I wanna give you something, if you promise that you won’t tell“. He pulled a piece of black licorice out of his pocket, and dangled it in front of her. “My favorite vice”, he said “besides coffee.” “Goes good with the whiskey”, he breathed in my face. She leaned forward and they took a bite together. He smelled deliciously of well-earned sweat, whiskey, licorice and a faint lingering scent of cologne. She inhaled deeply, to imprint his pheromones in her senses forever.
He pushed his hat back a bit with the glass in his hand. She raised her eyes and said teasingly “Always with the hat?” Leaning back against the door frame he said “That’s an excellent question, darlin’, an excellent question. I’ve always worn a hat, since Little League, and now, I guess I think it adds to the mystery. Does he or doesn’t he have hair, now that is the real question.” “I know you have hair”, she said, “I’ve seen pictures without”. “Now see you’ve gone and spoiled my mystique. That’s all I’ve got going on”, he grinned. “Oh, you’ve got a lot more than a hat going on”, she said.
“Maybe we should explore that”, he said, while pouring some more of the brown liquor. “You’ll be my vacation away from this place. You know what I want. Holding that cup, It’s pouring over the sides. Make me wanna spread my arms and fly.“
She reached for his hand. He wrapped his fingers around hers, and looking back said “Billy, I’m leaving you for tonight, take care of the tour bus.” “Soon enough I’m taking my shot”. He cocked his fingers like a gun. “Bang”.
They walked to the parking lot towards her car, away from the horde of fans waiting for him at the tour bus. She said “You shouldn’t leave your fans disappointed”. “Not to worry” he said. “Most of them are happy enough with Pretty Boy Billy”. As they drove towards her house, she glanced over at him. “Well I would imagine you have all kinds of girlfriends everywhere”, trying to sound nonchalant about the images playing in her head. He stared at her a moment. “Well”, he said, “Let me be perfectly honest”. “So before this goes too far, let me tell you what you are. You’re amazing, I’m attracted, but I’m terribly distracted. And I’m trying to be verbal, and I’m back into this circle because I just found someone special. And that’s really something special if you knew me. Nice to meet you, nice to meet you, nice to meet you anyway. And even if you want me to stay here, I’m telling you right now I should leave before I get to changing my mind, dear. I hope you understand what I mean.”
She stopped the car in her driveway, and froze with her hands on the wheel. She should turn around and take him back to his bus. She wasn’t going to make herself a one-night stand, a moment of weakness, a mistake, just another cheap groupie looking for someone to brag about. But he was honest with her, and she appreciated him all the more for it. He placed his hand on hers. She turned her head, looked deep into his eyes. Satisfied, she took the keys out of the ignition, and opened her car door, walking up to the house without looking back…..
He followed her to the front door. Put his hands on her shoulders, and turned her around. He touched his forehead to hers. “Darlin’, I think you understand me. That I don’t want to be anything other than what I’ve been trying to be lately. All I have to do is think of me and I have peace of mind. I’m tired of looking ’round rooms wondering what I’ve got to do or who I’m supposed to be. I don’t want to be anything other than me.” “You are all I want, all I dream about”, she said. The door closed silently behind them.
She awoke slowly, not wanting her dream to end. She kept her eyes shut, trying to prolong it. She knew it was just a dream, but it all felt so real….she sighed as she rolled over to the other side of the bed. And felt the warmth of a recently departed body. Her eyes flew open, as she frantically searched her brain and the room for any clues. Surely it was all a dream. The best dream. She blinked as she saw a t-shirt laid across her nightstand. She grabbed it and held it close to her breast and inhaled of it deeply. A note fluttered to the floor:
“I’m in love with a girl who knows me better. Fell for the woman just when I met her. Took my sweet time when I was bitter. Someone understands. And she knows how to treat a fella right. Give me that feeling every night. Wants to make love when I wanna fight. Now someone understand me. I’m in love with a girl, I’m in love with a girl, in love with a girl. And her name is YOU.”
She rolled back on her back. How could this be happening to her? Surely she would never see him again. Then her phone chirped. Incoming voice mail, from a number she didn’t recognize. With her heart pounding, she pressed the button, and heard his voice again…
“Oh, this is the start of something good, don’t you agree? I haven’t felt like this in so many moons, you know what I mean? And we can build through this destruction as we are standing on our feet. So since you want to be with me, you’ll have to follow through with every word you say. And I, all I really want is you, you to stick around. I’ll see you everyday. But you have to follow through. You have to follow through”.
She clutched the phone to her and wept with joy. Oh yes. Hell yes. She would follow through. She would follow him to the ends of the earth. Then, startled out of her revelry, she looked at her ringing phone. It was the same number, calling. She smiled as she hit the green button….