Tristan is alone in this world or at least she thinks she is but something unexpected happens when her life is threatened. She is staring down a loaded gun with gerard flashing before her eyes and ...
My Hands Stained Red from the Times I Have Killed You
Gerard was packing up Tristan’s stuff while she walked Blaine and Nate out to Nate’s car in the back lot behind the New Jersey venue. Gerard had Tristan’s messenger bag over his shoulder, his wet clothes from the show on his arm and Tristan’s guitar case in the other hand. Frank had his guitar in hand as did Mikey and Ray. Matt had already got his drum set packed up in the trailer behind their van.
Gerard had been anxious all day. Tristan had decided to stay over that night and he was nervous about this night. He wanted to be with her, but he knew that the age difference was a problem. So he convinced himself that being her friend was what he wanted more than anything at the moment, so he was going to try to be what they used to be. If things progressed to something else, he knew he couldn’t stop himself and he knew that Tristan would never stop him and that was a problem to him. He needed her, but he needed her friendship the most. He had been drinking more and abusing his prescriptions a lot more since they had had a falling out and he knew what he needed to redeem himself. He needed Tristan. He needed his best friend.
“Hey Gerard! Are you ok, man?” Ray asked as he watched Gerard stare absent mindedly at Tristan’s guitar case. Ray wondered what he was thinking. Was he thinking of Tristan? Was he in love with Tristan?
Gerard’s eyes fluttered to Ray’s and answered, “Yea…yea, I’m fine.” Ray shrugged it off. He knew Gerard was acting stranger lately, but he also knew something was going on between Gerard and Tristan. He wasn’t blind. Everyone knew something was up, since that night Mikey came back in the club soaking wet with Gerard and Tristan trailing behind him. Ray had tried to get it out of Mikey, but he never told him what he saw. Ray wondered if they had been hooking up, but he knew Tristan was classier than that. Far classier than all of us, he thought. She would never do that anyway. Ray obviously thought highly of Tristan.
Matt had headed out first, followed by Mikey. They loaded the van and waited for the rest of the band.
Frank headed out the back door with all the rest of the band mates in toe. Gerard was trailing behind them. They all made it to the van and packed everything they had in its rightful place and waited.
Gerard leaned up against the side of the van and lit a cigarette. He took a drag off the cigarette when shots rang out in the silence of the night air.
“What the fuck?!” Frank cried as all the boys ducked down in the van and Gerard crouched down next to the van.
“Those were fucking gunshots,” Ray finally let slip from his lips, not wanting to think of why someone was shooting near them. They watched as people screamed and scattered from the side entrance to the club.
“Tristan…?” Gerard questioned and didn’t think….he didn’t think, he just ran. He ran toward the entrance. He could hear his friends call after him and beg him to come back, but he couldn’t. He couldn’t live in a world where Tristan didn’t exist. So he ran harder.
Before the shots…
I shut my eyes no longer wanting to see the eyes of the man with the gun pointed at my head. I no longer wanted to see what was going to take my short lived life away from me. All I wanted was to see Gerard again. It’s a funny thing, death. Death. You know how they say your life flashes before your eyes before you die, well I can say it did, but it was only one picture, only one face, only one person flashed before me closed eyes. Gerard. I now realized how much in love I was with him. I didn’t want to die. I never thought they’d get me here. All I had wanted to do was stand up for my friends and stand up for myself. Take my life in my own hands and fight for it. I had wanted several times before to give it away, but this time was different, I wanted to save everyone.
“Put the guns down!”
My eyes dared to open at the new voice that startled my inner dialogue. Who was this intruder?
“I said, put your guns down!” I opened my eyes and saw two police officers standing near the entrance to the club, both wielding 9 mm and both were pointing them at the gunmen. I looked over at Blaine and Nate. They were holding hands, both on their knees with a gun pointed at them. I still had a gun trained on my head, so I didn’t dare try to move.
Neither one of the gunmen moved. They just stared at their targets and waited. I looked around without moving my head and found no one I knew aside from Blaine and Nate, but there were several people standing off the side of the club, watching. Watching us being forced to our knees and having guns pointed at us. Not one of them tried to save us. Not one tried to reason with the gunmen. Not one stood up for their fellow man. This world is so fucking ugly. I was disgusted now with all of them.
The cops kept yelling at the men to drop their guns and this charade went on for a while until one gunman decided to step closer to me and pulled me up and held me against him with me turned toward the police and away from him with the gun still pointed at my head. I tried my hardest to remain calm. I could smell alcohol on the man’s breath and I could feel his heart beating rapidly against my spine. He wasn’t going to let me go.
I fought them all off just to hold you close and tight. For some reason this lyric kept playing over and over again in my head, like it was meant for me. I shook the thought off and went back to reality.
“Let the girl go!” The cops were very aggressive and this caused the other man to drop his gun and step away from Blaine and Nate. They relaxed a bit, but I was still stuck with a gun to my head. Both were staring at me and I didn’t try to move. I was doomed no matter what.
“Do the right thing and put the gun down and step away from the girl!” The cops shouted. I closed my eyes again, trying to wish myself away from this situation.
I wished I was in Gerard’s room, sitting on the couch, watching a movie with Gerard. Us sitting close, but not touching, laughing and jumping when a scary part would pop up. Gerard reaching out and holding my delicate hand, I could feel the rough callouses on his fingers and palms from being an artist. I could almost feel his hand now. Rough and warm, comforting and safe.
I felt myself being shoved forward and then shots were being fired from behind me and in front of me. I hit the ground on my knees and felt a burning pain shot through my left arm. I didn’t scream, I just hit the ground and covered my head as more shots rang out. All the people that had gathered to watch ran away screaming and falling over each other.
I felt so weak and my arm burned like fire, but I knew it wasn’t too bad. I just laid against the pavement in fear.
The shots quit and then nothing. I peeked between fingers to see the man that had been holding me against him not thirty seconds ago, was lying on the concrete in a pool of blood. Dead.
I was alive.
I lift my left arm for a moment and pain shot through me, but nothing that I couldn’t handle.
I just was lying there on the pavement staring at the dead man. Suddenly I was being scooped up off the ground by two powerful arms. I winced when my arm hit his chest, but I didn’t say anything to the man. My eyes darted to my hero. Gerard. He had come when he heard the shots. He came for me. I laid my head against his shoulder as he carried me away from the body. He held me tightly and kissed my forehead when he let me go when the ambulance came. I had to be checked out on the sight, but I wasn’t going to the hospital. It was just a graze. I was lucky with all the gun fire that had been going off.
My brother had to call our father for the police to get him to release me from their custody. They took my statement and Blaine and Nate’s statement. The other gun man was in custody and apparently all this was over their hatred for homosexuals.
Blaine and Nate were shook up, but that didn’t make them hate anyone. I on the other hand had some burning hatred for those men. I waited in the ambulance with the paramedic for my father.
My band was sitting in our van, next to the ambulance waiting with me. Gerard was sitting in the open passenger door, lazily smoking a cigarette and watching my every move. He came for me. I kept playing the events over and over in my mind, but was stuck out was when he had come for me. He came for me. It was daunting, but so comforting to know he cared if I were in trouble.
Needless to say when my father arrived, all hell broke loose. He was angry that I was in a club underage, I was held up at gun point with Blaine and Nate, I was nearly shot and grazed by a bullet, I was playing in a band when I was sixteen years old, Frank and I were irresponsible, and the list goes on and on and on. He was also happy that I wasn’t that badly hurt. It was a relief to him, but he was angry. I had to ride with him home in a tense car with Frank in the back. Somehow we both had been demanded to ride back to Belleville with our father in a huff. He wanted to ground me and never let me leave the house.
“Dad that is so unfair. I didn’t do anything wrong!” I pouted from the passenger seat of the Audi.
“That’s the point, Tristan. You were in a bad place and I thought you and your brother had better sense than that, but apparently not. I can’t trust you and you get yourself in trouble. Trouble that could get you killed someday.” My father’s voice cracked. “I can’t believe you, Frankie! How could you let your little sister tag along?” He questioned in a huff while driving at nearly day break.
Frank sighed and answered, “I was tagging along with her first of all. Second, I always watch out for my sister. She was safe. It’s not my fault of her fault that some dudes don’t like gay guys and decided to take it out on innocent bystanders.” Frank was pissed the insinuation that he was irresponsible for his sister and himself.
“Tristan, I don’t want you in this band anymore. You are no longer allowed to go anywhere with them or with your brother for that matter.” My father said with anger.
I didn’t say anything. I knew that when we got home, I was gone. I wasn’t going to let him dictate how I lived my life. I needed this band. I needed Frankie and Gerard and Mikey and Ray.
Frank huffed, took out his cell and called Jamia to pick him up at dad’s. I knew he wouldn’t stay there either after this.
When we got home I went up to my room and packed me a bag. I ran down the stairs and before my father could protest, I slammed the front door and welcomed the morning. I walked to the sidewalk and heard my father call after me to come back, but I didn’t turn back. He was going to try to lock me away. Keep me away from my band, my life, my best friend. Well I would never let that happen.
I took off running toward the Way house. The van wasn’t there yet and when I approached the basement door, I reached out and jiggled the door knob, but it was locked. Shit where was my key? Lost, of course.
I slung my bag onto the damp concrete floor next to the stairs. I slid down the wall and laid my head against the door and waited. My arm was throbbing, but I didn’t let that keep me from sleep.
“Oh shit….that’s Tristan. Tristan? Hey….Trist- ow what was that for?” Mikey whined.
“Shhh shut the fuck up dumbass. She needs to sleep,” Gerard sighed. Gerard had Tristan’s bag over his shoulder and then he bent down and gathered her up into his arms and waited. “Well…?” Gerard whispered almost annoyed.
“Oh. Shit, I’ll get the door,” Mikey wasn’t all that awake and it was making Gerard extra cranky.
Mikey opened the door, letting Gerard go ahead of him with Tristan in his arms. He laid her down on the couch careful not to wake her or hurt her arm. Mikey watched at his brother got a blanket from his closet and he laid it gently over Tristan. He then watched at his brother took off her shoes with extra care not to wake her. He then brushed the lose hair behind her ear.
Gerard bent over and placed a soft kiss on her forehead, not realizing that Mikey was watching his every move. Mikey didn’t say anything. He’d seen all he needed to know. Gerard was genuinely in love with Tristan. There was no denying it. He didn’t want to bother him with talks about age anymore. He knew it wouldn’t matter. It was set in stone. They were meant for each other. He knew it.
“Put the gun down!” I watched at the cops screamed at the gunmen. I had a gun against my head, being held against the man’s body. I heard a shot ring out. I closed my eyes briefly and then I looked over to see no one. No more cops. No Blaine or Nate. No Gerard. Where was everyone?
I looked down and saw a pool of blood starting to form at my feet. I felt liquid dripping from my head and down my body. I reached up and ran my hand through my hair and felt a large gaping hole on the side of my head and hard bone was sticking out of it.
I tried to scream, but nothing came out. I tried not to panic.
Where am I?
Am I dead?
I am dead.
I knew it. Who killed me? How did this happen? I know how this happened, a man with a fucking stupid prejudice decided to take your life. Fantastic. That is just peachy. I love this shit. I rolled my eyes at myself. I was crazy now.
The club was still there, but I was the only one there.
Why did they have to kill me?
I am only sixteen years old.
I’m still a virgin for fuck’s sake.
I groaned inwardly and stomped my petite foot.
Great. I’m stuck here alone.
Alone. I began to panic.
I don’t want to be alone.
It’s not fair. I was alive five minutes ago.
I was in love with a man.
I was in a band. I was where I wanted to be.
Now I’m alone. I began to hyperventilate now. I can’t breathe.
This can’t be happening. I was just beginning to live.
Please save me from this hell.
All alone for eternity.
I fall to the ground into my puddle of blood and brain matter, crying uncontrollably.
“Tristan. Tristan oh my god. What’s wrong? Are you ok? Wake up!” I awake from my nightmare to Gerard, who was on the couch holding me against his chest trying to stop my crying.
I was now sobbing into his chest and nearly hyperventilating. I didn’t want to be alone. I was alive, but I was alone. I needed him now more than ever. I didn’t want to let go of him from fear of returning to reality where I was actually alone and dead. I needed this contact to show me I was still alive and being watched over by this wonderful man.
“Shhh shhh,” Gerard cooed, “it’s ok. I’m here. Shhh please stop crying, sugar, I can’t take your tears,” Gerard’s voice cracked. I was inconsolable. Gerard just rocked me back and forth and kept begging me to stop crying. He was now crying along with me. He knew I was scared. I hadn’t showed it before, but here it was for the whole world to see. I was scared of being alone and of dying. I was scared of never getting to love him.