Desole confronts herself and is confronted by Gerard.
“Yeah well what would your father say if he saw you doing this to yourself?” Gerard spat at me. I was about to fire back but then the weight of the words hit me in the chest like a wrecking balls. I faltered back a little bit and before I even truly realized what he had said I felt tears spring to my eyes. I stopped and glared up at him, hoping that my anger would light him on fire. But it didn’t so right when he opened his mouth to apologize, I slapped him across the face with all the strength I could muster. It made my hand sting and the force of the blow actually made him stumble.
Then before anybody could stop be I turned a booked it inside the tour bus, my hands over my face in shame. I threw myself into my bunk and tangled myself up in the covers, shoving my head under my pillow.
He might as well have just called me a whore! But what hurt even worse than that was the fact that he was right. My father was probably looking down on me from heaven, shaking his head. He probably thought I had become a lowly little whore, like my mother did. He was probably ashamed. Oh god, and my little sister Lizzette, she was probably horrified of me. I felt a sob escape as I thought of her angelic little face twisting and contorting in horror upon seeing me.
“Babe, you in here?” Milo called out through the bus, poking his head in. I didn’t say anything, I only kept crying. He shuffled inside and closed the door quietly behind himself before taking a seat on the edge of my bunk.
Milo didn’t say anything, he only sighed and listened to the sound of my sobbing for a while. He knew Gerard was right, too. Gerard was right on the money and I hated him for it. Why did he have to say that? He could’ve called me any name in the book and it wouldn’t have shaken me half as badly as that statement. I felt like a failure, a looser. I hadn’t felt so low since the night I found myself sitting in the back of a cop car, half naked on my way back to my mother’s house. Milo patted my leg, still silent. I guess he was trying to conjure up some form of comfort even though there wasn’t any.
“He’s right, isn’t he? My dad’s probably ashamed of me. He probably looks down on me in disgust!” I wailed into my pillow, breaking the almost silence. Milo sighed again, continuing to pat my leg.
“Oh god and what about Lizzette? She’s probably too scared to look at me! I’d probably give her nightmares! I bet she wouldn’t even recognize me if she were standing right in front of me.” I said hopelessly. Milo grimaced.
“I think your father and Izzy both love you very, very much. I think they love you more than you know. And I know that they will always love you no matter what you do.” Milo said, his tone even and calm. I sniffed loudly and wiped my pouring eyes.
“People say that about my mom and look! She hates my guts! She thinks I’m a pig!” I spat back at him. Milo bit the inside of his cheek and thought for a second.
“Your mother is a different story. She never loved you the same way Izzy and your dad did. Desolé, you have to think of it this way; your father is probably proud of you. You’ve overcome so many issues within yourself and you’ve grown so much a person. And the music you’re making is changing so many lives. You’re a hero to these kids.” Milo said encouragingly.
“Milo, I don’t think growing as a person is the same thing as running away to become a stripper. And you know that this band was a last ditch effort. We made it here by pure dumb luck and if we hadn’t I’d probably be skulking around a street corner or dead in a fucking ditch.” I shot back.
“You have to think of the positives. You’ve been doing so much good for so many people. Your father is probably looking down and thinking ‘my little girl has grown up to be a leader’. You’re successful, you’re beautiful and you’re happy. Don’t let some sleazy rock and roll boy toy tell you your shit because of some Playboy photo shoot. He’s just jealous because he couldn’t make in the magazine.” Milo said firmly. I wiped my eyes and couldn’t hold back a laugh. He always knew what to say.
“You really think that?” I asked, feeling a little smile cross my mouth. Milo smiled too and nodded.
“I always have.”
A WEEK LATER
We were playing in a fucking arena for god’s sake! Thousands of teenagers all looking at you at once! Millions of eyes all watching me to see what I was going to do next. I was quaking in my Louis Vuiton’s. I was so nervous I could barely see straight. I was trembling so bad I couldn’t hold my drink or my cigarette.
I ran into the bathroom and threw my head into the toilet before barfing loudly into it. I groaned as I pushed my hair out of my face and rested my chin on the toilet seat. I felt sick to my stomach and I couldn’t decide whether is was too much booze or anxiety or both. Then I heard the bathroom door creak open and somebody rush in, probably looking to tell me we had to get onstage.
“Get out!” I grumbled, my voice echoing in the toilet bowl and the tile walls.
“Oh, there you are Desolé. Milo said you had five minutes until the house lights when off.” Said Gerard’s voice. I felt my stomach knot up with rage. Ever since our little fight at the Playboy shoot I’d been either extremely mean to him or avoided him completely. And in my state, I was not up for seeing anybody, especially him.
“Get out Gerard! You are the LAST person I want to see right now!” I shouted, reaching up and flushing the toilet. Gerard said something but I didn’t hear it over the rushing water as it carried away my puke. I felt that sickening feeling rise in my stomach so I leaned back over and threw up again.
“Holy shit, are you okay?” Gerard, bursting into the stall to check if I was dying or something. I flushed the toilet again and moaned to show my annoyance at his presence. Why couldn’t he just leave me alone to do my thing! Sheesh!
“No, now leave me alone! I have to get ready.” I coughed. I stood up on shaking feet and pushed past Gerard over to the sink. I stumbled in my high heels and had to grip the sink for dear life so that I wouldn’t topple over. I stared myself down in the mirror. My eye liner and mascara was smearing and smudged across my eyes and I had so nasty dark circles. I pulled out my tube of black lipstick and ran it smoothly over my lips.
“You’re drunk.” Gerard said, trying to catch me as I nearly fell over a second time. I shoved him off and tumbled away on my wobbling knees. It felt like I was walking on tooth picks. This must be how a baby giraffe must feel when it first learns to walk.
“So? What are you going to give me a lecture on how I shouldn’t drink now too? Well newsflash, you down more booze in a day than I do in a week so suck my dick!” I slurred, loudly, trying to point my finger at him even though I was seeing doubles of everything.
“Listen, I wanted to say that I’m about what I said. I was wasted and way out of line. I had no idea about your father or your sister. I’m really, really sorry for your loss.” he apologized. I was taken off guard by this. I didn’t want him to back down like that, I wanted him to fight me back for once.
“What do you know about loss?” I said, rolling my eyes and loosing my balance. Gerard sighed and stepped a little closer to me.
“When we were recording our album, Mikey and I lost our grandmother Helena.” He said quietly. I faltered when I heard it and felt guilty instantly.
“Oh…I’m so sorry.” I said, trying to sound as apologetic as possible even though I was piss drunk. Gerard half smiled. “So that’s what the song is about then, right?” I asked, staring at my shoes.
“Yeah, we wrote it for her.” he said. I nodded and wobbled a little because of it. “But I am really sorry about what I said. I don’t know you well enough to be telling you what to do with your life, but I wish I did….” his voice trailed off. I was touched to be honest. Nobody ever told me they wanted to get to know me. Most people who did wish that they had never met me.
“Gerard that’s sweet.” I said, smiling a little.
“Its okay if you don’t forgive me.” he added. Why was my heart so easy to warm? Maybe this was stupid of me to trust him , but I guess I would just have to wait any see.
“Well, I do. And you can get to know be better if you want. But just not right now, I have a show to put on.” I said as kindly as I could manage. Gerard walked over and I gave him a little hug even though he smelled like he had just crawled out of a rotten gym bag.
I guess I was just that easy to win over…