Jess has news for Frank. Bad news.
I actually had managed to fall asleep somehow. So much for that. I glance at a clock. We’re late. Like really late. We’ve been here for a while but apparently being here early doesn’t guarantee that we’ll be ready early. It just means we’ll mope around for a while, then be late anyway. I can hear fans outside, no doubt in line to get in. The gates open in twenty minutes after all.
I sigh loudly and swing my legs out of the bunk. She glares at me.
“You shut up and follow me and be happy about it.” With that she turns on her heel and walks out of the bunk area. I follow, faking a smile as best I can. We pass the guys sitting around the front lounge. Jess smiles brightly. I swear that girl should try out for the cheerleading squad. Who honestly smiles like that?
“Jason and I are going to go check on the guitars, we’ll meet you backstage before the show,” she chirps. There are some nods and Jess skips – skips! – off the bus. I follow, grinning weakly. Bob meets my eye, concerned, and I shrug. She’s not going to try anything yet, it’s too obvious. The two of us, alone. She wouldn’t announce it so plainly if she were planning something. No, she’ll just bitch me out.
We make our way in the general direction of the guitar trailer, but predictably she pulls me into an empty alley and turns to face me. We stare each other down for a moment. Memories start to hit me of other times we stood like this, in an abandoned alley, lost in each other’s eyes. Of times when I could melt into those eyes. Times when I loved her. When I didn’t know she was cheating on me. The same eyes that used to soften at a single smile now frighten me. The gleam in them is dangerous and I don’t doubt at all that she would kill someone.
“You think you’re clever? Did you think I wouldn’t find out?”
“What?” Oh yeah, real tough. She’s threatening my friends and all I can say is ‘What?’ I’ll have her shaking in her boots in no time.
“You’ve been talking to them. I warned you. Oh, Frankie. You just never listen!”
I freeze. She said them. If it was him that would be one thing. She’s knows Bob knows, and it wouldn’t be much of a stretch to figure out that I told him. But she said them.
“Yes, Frank. I know about all of it. I’ve known for a while but our innocent drummer’s shocking confession was the last straw. I was hoping to wait a bit longer after the accident with Ray. Oh well.”
Her eyes are pure rage. Her beautiful face is twisted with hate and revenge. She laughs, a high grating sound.
“Do I have to spell it out for you, Frankie?” she laughs. “You called Ray at the hospital. You think a Jersey cell number to a California hospital wouldn’t be suspicious? There was a long distance fee that the hospital asked me to pay. You two talked for thirty seven minutes, that was quite the heart to heart. Then Mikey saw you in the bathroom.”
My eyebrows shoot up. The phone call was an unfortunate mistake, but meeting Mikey? How could she know about that? He asked me not to tell anyone, I very much doubt he told Jess.
“It’s in his diary, silly,” Jess answers, reading my thoughts on my face. She read his diary?! “He was really shook up seeing you. You upset him very much. You should see some of the things he wrote. Heart wrenching, actually. And all those texts to Gerard. You were quite the busy texter.”
Again shock is on my face. I knew she was stealing my phone, but I was sure I was careful enough. I erased them as soon as I could.
“Oh, you’re phone was clean, don’t worry. Oh, except for that call to Brian. You forgot to delete that one. You did a great job deleting all those messages, though. Gerard, however, did not.”
She went in Gerard’s phone?! Has she never heard of privacy? And the guys didn’t even do anything to her. They took her in with open arms. They treated her like family. Like a fucking princess. I was the one that hurt her, but she’s treating all of them like enemies.
“And then there’s our favorite drummer. I knew something was up the night you two never showed at the hospital, I just wasn’t sure how much you told him. I still don’t know for certain. It doesn’t seem like he knows too much, but he knows it’s you and you knew that he figured it out. The two of you looked at each other differently after that night.”
I shiver. She knows everything. Am I that transparent? I’ve put the guys in danger because I wasn’t strong enough to just face my problems on my own. I just had to go and talk to them. I feel weak. I feel helpless.
“So let’s see. Ray, Mikey, Gerard, and Bob.” She counts them off on her fingers, a sickening fake smile pasted to the face. “That’s the whole band plus Brian. I’d say you broke our agreement, Frankie. And I told you what would happen if you did. They find out it’s you, somebody dies. So who’s it going to be, Frankie? It doesn’t matter to me. They’re all equally worthless. Everyone’s going to die in the end, so why don’t you pick. Who gets to die first?”
I can’t speak. I can’t even breathe. “Stop,” I choke out. “Leave them alone. Take me.”
She laughs. “Very heroic, Frankie. But if you die I don’t get to watch you suffer when they die. That’s no fun!”
She sticks her hip out and pouts. “Fine, if you not going to choose, I guess I’ll have to.” She shrugs and looks at her watch. “Goodness it’s late! The show starts in three minutes. We have to hurry!”
She grabs my hand and drags me to the stage. Our guitars are already there and some techs shove them at us. Ray runs over.
“There you are, we thought you were going to be late. Go!” The increase in the volume of the screaming tells me Gerard just appeared on stage. I need to get to Bob, I need to tell him it’s off. I need to tell him she might go after anyone. I need to call the show. I need to do something!
But Gerard has already started singing and Bob’s riser prevents me form being able to talk to him without Jess at my shoulder. So instead I find myself shoved onto the stage by someone backstage. I face the crowd and pluck out the notes I need to play. I don’t know anything for certain. All I know is that she’ll do something. I don’t know when or where or to whom.
All I can do is wait for the worst.
I know I said weekend, but I couldn't help myself. So it's 3:38 am right now, I stayed up all night writing this so I could post for you all. What can I say, I'm an addict. Enjoy! I'ma go sleep now. Love you to pieces (don't make me make that literal).