The way your bass drum heart pulses in time with my steps makes me smile...

Penny scribbled these words down in her notebook, praying she wouldn't forget them like all her bursts of inspiration at 3.A.M. She was certain that the next morning she would wake up, wipe the string of dribble from her open and funny tasting mouth, read these words through blurry eyes and consider herself either a genius or crazy before going back to sleep. the way you thrash out beats on my brain and build masterpieces from skin and sticks. We'll rule the world with a series of fast and slow thumps, taps, rolls, fills, crashes, bangs and ticks that fit so well with this new riff I made up yesterday it's like you've already heard it.

If you've ever been obsessed with someone you would know where these words were coming from. Not in love, she insists you understand, just obsessed(but not in the violent way because that's a little bit weird and Penny doesn't like blood or restraining orders). Penny's words were spilling from that deep and cleverly hidden well of Stalker's Blood we all have locked inside us, sizzling and thick, full of bitter-sweet desperation and curiosity.

Penny was in l--...obsessedwith a drummer called Tim. Her band mate of one year, five months, three weeks and two days but who was counting?

If you ever asked her she would tell you it just happened one day, the obsession that is. She just walked into their lead guitarists garage -classic rock band setting, of course-, was introduced to 'Tim, from my music tech class', said 'hi', looked over at him whilst he started working out drums to one of the songs and wham! Then she started noticing things. Like how he talked, when he talked, the way he looked agitated when he wasn't playing with his sticks and all his other mannerisms like tapping the off-beat to songs with his feet or muttering words to himself before he spoke them out loud, like he was deciding whether they were worthwhile. Once in a while Penny found herself thinking 'everything you say is worthwhile, so say it'. It got to the point where she watched the shapes his mouth made around words before she decided it was turning into something of a fixation. Her insatiable curiosity kicked in and she wanted to know what made this kid tick. Why he was constantly moving, why he only ever wore t-shirts, why in God's name he listened to Slipknot and why she wanted to know more and more and more.

She, maybe, wanted to know everything.

You're never the same beat twice.

Some of her favourite lines from her songs stemmed from a conversation she had with Tim at some point about absolutely nothing but showed Penny what depths Tim's mind could go to. It made Penny's fingers positively itch with a need to dig deeper, which she did. A lot in fact, and thus found out Tim was as musically eclectic as she was. He was a punk-rocker at heart just as Penny was an indie kid through and through, but they could talk for days about their love of Motown. Not to mention Reggae, metal, blues, pop - Penny confessed her love of Ashlee Simpson and Kate Nash to Tim - and they argued the pros and cons of ska.

Tim was con.

Penny was scandalized.

Tell me, if this world floods full of ignorance and silence can we sail away on your drums with the beautiful music we make as the wind in our sails and follow the tide away from all these false faces and true fears?

He had bad days, as did everyone. Once he arrived at Penny's house one night at around 11 o'clock. She had no idea why she chose her that night, but she was so happy he did.

He was sobbing, shaking with rage and saying through tears and wiping his nose with the back of his hand that he was leaving town. He'd had a fight with his parents about school and the band and he decided he'd had enough of them so he came to Penny's house to say goodbye.

Penny was livid in spite of herself. Really, she was more afraid that Tim was actually going to leave but livid none the less because he wasn't even stopping to think about anyone else. She shouted the drummer down for what seemed like 5 seconds but was actually 15 minutes.

Once they were both tired, hoarse, in tears and unable to argue any more they went inside for tea -outside was cold- and sat in her living room watching old QI and Top Gear re-runs because Dave TV is the best channel in the world. Penny slyly coaxed Tim into going home and creating a civil environment for everyone's sake, which he did an hour or four later. He gave her the tightest enveloping tall-person hug as he left and thanked her for making him see straight.

His grateful smile was heart-breaking.

3 piece boys and pinstripe girls look on and wonder what they are missing...

The day she found out that she and Tim were the only people in the band that wanted to continue it forever was slightly sad but also great because she knew Tim wasn't leaving any time soon. They were an amazing band in her opinion, though and she would miss it once it was over. Drums, bass and vocals was fun, but not enough in her opinion.

Tim assured her that guitarists weren't hard to come by at all, in fact they are sometimes leaking out of the woodwork, which was indeed true.

Tim always knew the right thing to say.

...and we're on a park bench holding hands and comparing Origin of Symmetry to Absolution, but never kissing.

One night she was helping him pack his drum kit into his mum's car while Tim's mother had gone to the toilet. He smiled at her when there was nothing left but the bass and thanked Penny with a surprise kiss firmly on the lips and she could feel his heart racing in that brief second. She smiled when he pulled away, startled and dumb, and soon afterwards started giggling uncontrollably while Tim had a mini-panic about doing something wrong.

Once Penny had calmed down she gave him a peck on the corner of his mouth and blamed the giggling on a nervous reaction which it was partly. It was more, however, because she had considered kissing Tim to see if her obsession was a crush, simply an obsession or, well, the dreaded 'L' word. It turned out to be...well, she doesn't particularly want to divulge that information, but the kiss was nice. Better than nice in fact.

They spend the rest of the time before Tim's mother got back arguing about who would take the bass to the car. Penny won, but she owed Tim a kiss, or 10.

On a purely friendly basis, of course.

I've fallen into your spider's snare and kind of like the way the pattern sits and how it only twitches in programmed perfect pulses.

She calls him 'emo kid' and he calls her 'indie Cindy'. She dresses him in skinny jeans and cardigans and he dresses her in skinny jeans and chequered hoodies. They have fun jamming on the 12-bar blues while the rest of the band refuses anything but rock and they just have to educate them about just how much rock owes to the 12 bar blues.

Tim never lies, only fudges the truth while Penny creates unnecessarily embellished and insanely planned untruths because she can. Tim sings like a dream but he prefers not to. Penny's not allowed to play Tim's drums until she gets good, so never.

There's still things she wants to know about Tim that he just won't tell but she'll still keep trying because she's obsessed. Not in love or crushing on, she insists vehemently, just obsessed with an amazing drummer called Tim who has no idea what diminuendo means but has crescendo tattooed to his heart.

Pulses that shake the snare but it just holds fast with each tremor. Trap me tighter and eat me whole so I can see your insides.