After seeing the twin towers fall a lonely cartoonist decides he wants to do more with his life.
Someone on the pier noticed that their was a plane flying way too low and the people watched in horror as it rammed straight into the North Tower, better known as Tower One, of the World Trade Center. People on the pier wondered how this could have happened did the pilot have heart failure or something? They watched as the tower began to burn and then the sight of things falling from the floors. The people realized that it was other human being knowing that they were going to die jumping out of the building instead of the agony of burning to death.
People stood there and wondered what floors were hit and did they know anyone working on the floor. As they watched what was unfolding before them, they noticed another plane flying low and this time hit the second tower. It was then they realized their beloved city was under attack. The people gasped as they could believe that it had happened again. A few minutes later it was announced that the ferries would not be going into the city. Everyone just stood on the pier and watched. A man with headphones announced to the crowd that the Pentagon was hit by a plane. The crowd grew as a train let off it’s passengers that were supposed to go in the city. In the crowd was a young man who worked in the comic industry. An hour after being attacked they watched as the South Tower collapsed into itself like a carefully orchestrated implosion. The people on the pier all hoped and prayed that everyone got out, but they knew better. People on the pier started crying men and woman alike. The man with the headphones announced a plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania. How many more were there, asked the people to themselves. They stood their and watched the second tower collapse, it had hung on for so long after the attack. But now like its sister tower it was gone.
“Did you know someone?” asked a woman in her mid forties.
The young man just shook his head no.
Gerard Way for all of his life felt like an outsider. He wasn’t cool and never really fit in. He loved to write and draw and often got lost in his own head. Both he and his younger brother Mikey were the same way. Maybe growing up in Belleville did it to him maybe it was something else. Right now Gerard had never felt more of an outsider than now, not having known anyone who was in either tower but just like everyone else standing there he needed to be here. The difference from here and school no one made him feel like an outsider. It didn’t matter that he didn’t know someone it only mattered was he was in pain and an American.
Gerard finally returned home to the loving arms of his mother and grandmother who were worried sick. They never knew if Gerard made it into the city or not. He went to his room in his basement and started thinking. Sure he had the cartoon network looking at a cartoon he created, but after what he saw he felt he needed more. Needed to do more, have a voice.
On September 14th there was a nationwide candle vigil and Gerard needed to be back on the pier. As songs of patriotism were sung, Gerard could only think of the broken city sky. As he recognized some of the people there were there that day, he asked what had happened to the one they knew. Some were there at the vigil and some were gone. He swallowed hard and said he was sorry. Looking around he saw at least they all weren’t in it alone. As they looked at where the towers stood he knew everyone wondered where we go from here.
Caught in the emotion of it all, Gerard sat and wrote down what he saw and felt that day, as it was still very fresh in his mind. It looked like it could be a song.
Before September 11th happened Gerard was in a deep depression, was seeing a therapist and taking Wellbutrin. He was twenty-four and felt his life was going nowhere. He again met with the execs from the cartoon network and as they sat there talking about his work being property and what they can do with it Gerard just knew there was something he wanted more than this. He was done with the whole comic scene and wanted to form a band.
Over the years he had been in bands some with some without his brother Mikey. He had played with a drummer Matt Pelissier and a guitarist by the name of Ray Toro. It was funny to him thinking of those two because he hadn’t for years.
It was a few weeks after the attacks and Gerard went to a local bar by the name of Loop Lounge. He was sitting there minding his own business when he noticed someone sitting next to him. He was tall, shaggy brown hair that looked like it was starting to thin. He had a goatee and he reminded Gerard of Shaggy from Scooby Doo.
“Hey Otter, I was just thinking of you,” said Gerard.
“Good thoughts I hope,” smiled Matt.
“What have you been up to lately?” asked Gerard.
“This and that. Where have you been? No one has seen hide or hair of you?”
“I’ve just been hiding out in my basement.”
“I see Mikey here and there. You know him where there’s a party there’s Mikey.”
“I saw it happen Otter. I watched as people plummeted to their deaths right before they fell.”
“That must have been tough man,” said Matt shaking his head.
“I want more out of life I want to make a difference. My art career is fucking blown to shit. Maybe one last shot at music might help.”
“I’m not playing with anyone right now.”
“You know what. I’ve been writing songs. You’re not doing anything, and I’m not doing anything, so let’s get together and give it a shot.”
“Sounds good. Come by at my place and bring your guitar we’ll see what you have.”
Gerard left the bar feeling good, it might have something to do with the alcohol he just consumed or maybe it was something else.
The next night he arrived at Matt’s house and they proceeded to the attic where Matt had a drum kit set up.
Gerard started strumming his guitar and started to sing the the opening versus of “Skylines and Turnstiles” the song he wrote the about the towers falling.
Matt listened and started to add drums to it. The guitar was still weak and Gerard knew he couldn’t play guitar and sing at the same time. He had an idea.
“What’s Toro doing?”
“Playing in a band,” Gerard should have known better. He was a great guitarist. “Get this as a drummer.”
“That’s a fucking waste. I think I’ll give him a call just to see if he wants to jam.”
As soon as he got home Gerard called his old friend Ray.
The phone rang five times and someone finally picked it up. It was Ray.
“Hey Gerard, long time no see what’s up man?”
“I was with Matt and we were sorta jamming.”
“I wrote a song about the towers collapsing, the problem is I can’t sing and play guitar at the same time.”
“Whoever said you could play guitar?” laughed Ray.
“Probably better than you can play drums.”
“So you heard about that?”
“What are you fucking wasting your talents for? But really, no strings attached; you don’t have to say yes or no. Just come, check it out, and bring your guitar.”
“I’m not doing anything tomorrow night, sure I’ll be over.”
Good to his word Ray went over Matt’s house and they went up to his attic. Gerard and Matt played the song for him. Ray looked at them, “How ‘bout a drum and guitar intro, something like this?”
Ray played a riff when he finished he played it again and this time Matt joined him.
“Wow that sounded great,” said Gerard.
For the next eight hours they sat there and wrote and practiced until they came up with what they thought was the perfect song.
All of the sudden Ray got up, packed his guitar, and started to leave.
“That bad Toro?”
Ray looked at his two friends and smiled, “I need to go home and quit a band. See you guys tomorrow?”
For the first time in a long time Gerard Way had something to really smile about.