Author: General Disarray PM
“Where have you been?” Mike snapped when I walked onto the stage. “Making a phone call. The police are coming.” “Why are the police coming?” “Bryce stole my keys and drove away in the bus. CURRENTLY REVISING CHAPTER 9Rated: Fiction T - English - Humor/Romance - Chapters: 26 - Words: 52,315 - Reviews: 115 - Favs: 13 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 03-20-06 - Published: 12-08-04 - id: 1778218
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San Antonio, Texas
"Children, children…this is your captain speaking…we will be landing shortly in San Antonio…so please fasten your seat belts and return your tray tables into the up-right and locked position…"
"Stop fooling around, Seth!" Bryce scowled. Andy and Mike laughed hysterically from the back of the bus I was currently piloting. I parked the bus at the backstage entrance of the Alamo Dome and opened the doors. Mike, Andy and Bryce hopped out.
"Remember, you can't desert me and make me drag in all the stuff…"
"Don't worry! We gottcha covered!" Andy said reassuringly as he grabbed two of Mike's guitars. Mike lifted the enormous mass of electrical cords, and Bryce carried his drumsticks and his high-hat. At least he was helping, for once…I never really introduced myself, but I'm Seth. Andy is our Techie and bass guitarist. Bryce is our drummer, and Mike is the lead singer. Mike is also a fairly decent drummer too, but our manager, Richard, likes our sound best with him as the lead singer. Don't get me wrong, before Mike came along, Andy and I managed just fine. He and I just sing back up for now. I won't even go into Bryce's singing abilities. He only tried it once. That was the end of that…
If you're wondering why I'm gabbing on and on about music jargon, that's because we're a band. We're set to perform tonight in San Antonio and have just arrived at the wonderful Alamo Dome.
To tell you the truth, I'm feeling quite edgy. Sure, we've definitely performed before, but that's not what's bothering me. Bryce and I have never really gotten along. I always try to do the Christian thing and turn the other cheek, but I have a terrible temper. I've got hot Irish blood running through my veins and there's not a thing I can do about. All this shit has just built to the point where I can no longer shrug off his petty insults and direct attacks on my every move. I can feel the altercation coming from a mile away, like a thunderstorm off in the distance. Hey, that was mildly poetic. And yes, I did just think that.
I finally pocketed the bus keys and made my way to the back of our beat up school bus. Yes, we travel in style-in an old school bus Andy found when we were performing in Oklahoma. I'll have to tell you that story another time. I hoisted an amp onto my shoulder and entered the concert hall through the stage door.
The darkness I found myself in was absolute and I managed to run dead into a wall. I finally stumbled onto the stage. Andy looked my way and motioned me over.
"Perfect timing. I was just about to come get that." He said gratefully.
"I see…" I drawled sarcastically, setting my burden down beside where he was working.
"Where's Mike?" I asked, noting his absence.
"He went searching for a vending machine, since we haven't fucking eaten all day."
"I don't think I asked you, Bryce, but thank you for the most enriching explanation," I said stiffly before I could bite back the retort. I turned to leave before I could say anything else.
"Well if I had been driving, I would've stopped to eat a long time ago. Man's gotta eat." He said, pummeling himself in the chest a few times to show how tough he was. I turned back around.
"Do you have a C class license? And how was I supposed to get out of parking lot once I got into it? Rush hour in San Marcos is not some place I want to linger." I tried to leave again, figuring that we had settled our little spat for the moment.
"I thought you were supposed to be an expert driver." He retorted coolly, leaning against the wall and smirking at me with obvious superiority.
Who art in heaven
Hallowed be thy name
"I mean, how hard can it be to drive a bus? If some European can do it, then anyone can."
Thy kingdom come
Thy will be done
"I bet your mother is proud of you, learning to drive a bus. If Mike and Andy ever listen to me, and get rid of you then you'll have something you can fall back on."
On earth as it is in heaven
Give us this day our daily bread
"What? Why so quiet, Irish? Not gonna defend yourself? Shows what a fucking pansy you are."
And forgive those who trespass…
My fervent recitation of the Lord's Prayer was not helping. That was it. I caught him with a left upper cut. Bryce staggered backwards, holding his jaw.
"HELLFIRE AND DAMNATION! Didn't I tell you not to vex me, man! Get out of my sight!"
"Or you'll do what?" Amazing. That guy never quit. He managed to smirk and hold his face at the same time. I stared hard into Bryce's steely blues eyes. I picked up his sticks that were lying on the floor.
"Take your sticks and leave." I held the drum sticks out to Bryce.
"WTF? What do you mean take your sticks and leave?"
"Dammit…take them!" I threw them at the floor. He just stared at me.
"You can't f'ing fire me!"
"GET OUT!" My voice echoed back at my angrily.
Bryce picked up his sticks. He was looking particularly murderous at this point in time.
"Fine. I'll leave. I'd like to see you get through tonight with out me. This won't be the last you've heard from me!" He shouted lamely. He stalked away and the stage door slammed loudly.
"What just happened?" Mike asked anxiously, coming back not a moment after Bryce was gone. I said nothing.
"Um…Seth just told Bryce to leave…" Andy nearly whispered. Mike turned to face me irately.
"Seth. You do realize that you've just fired our drummer?" He demanded, closing the distance between us.
"Don't you start on me too, Mike."
I walked away at that point, running a hand through my onyx hair. This would be a turning point, that it was. Right now, I was just hoping with all my heart that we could pull this gig off. I knew every song by heart, being a complete perfectionist and all. Mike could take over for Bryce, couldn't he? Who was I kidding. There would be plenty of outraged fans if we cancelled, but that seemed to be the only option.
I exited through the stage door, ready to chase Bryce away if he didn't scram. I opened the door to glimpse our tour bus doing a burn out from the gravel parking lot.
"Hey! What do you think you're doing! Get back here!" I cried, sprinting after the bus. It was gone. I swore under my breath and threw a handful of gravel. Why had I not thought of it before? I checked my pocket. He'd swiped the keys when I hadn't been paying attention. I swore again and went back inside. We were definitely canceling now.
6and ½ minutes later
Six and a half minutes later, I was dialing the number of the local police station on a pay phone. I listened to the phone ringing on the other end, and was quite startled when someone answered.
"San Antonio Police Department." A polite female voice said in my ear.
"Yes, m'am. I'd like to report a stolen vehicle…"
"Young man, why didn't you call the emergency line?"
"I didn't think this could be constituted as an emergency…?" She sighed.
"I'll still take your call."
"That's most kind of you."
"Please get to the point."
"Yes m'am on the double. The vehicle stolen was an upgraded school bus painted red, forest green and black. The tag reads KL-66789 and the guy driving is just under 6 feet and has blonde hair and blue eyes. His name is Bryce Lanthanum and he has a bruise on his jaw. Also, there was over $1000 in equipment in the bus when it was stolen."
"How do you know all this?"
"I happen to be acquainted with the suspect and I punched him when he threatened me."
"Have you called 911 before?"
"…I don't think so…"
"What is your name please, and location?"
"My name is Seth, m'am, and I am currently standing just outside the backstage entrance at the Alamo Dome."
"Do you have any idea where the suspect was going?"
"No m'am. The main road can't be seen from where I'm standing."
"Thank you, Seth. And officer will be deployed shortly."
"You don't have to call me m'am."
She hung up and I replaced the receiver. I picked up the receiver again and inserted two quarters. I dialed the local rock station to tell them of their plight. All I had to do was prove that I was really me…
"Hello 97.6 the Rock."
"Uh…hi. I know you're not going to believe me…but my name is Seth Outland and I'm calling to request that you announce the cancellation of the concert at the Alamo Dome tonight."
"So wait a minute…You're claiming to be the lead guitarist of Stone Henge? You've got to be joking."
"That I am not. Let me convince you…" I argued with the man on the other end for ten minutes about whether or not I was really me. I finally told him something that only I would know and I'd rather not share it. At long last, I hung up and returned to my band.