Is it...? Could it be...? An update...??!
I open my eyes slowly, then immediately shut them again as the bright light invades my sleep. My head feels like someone slammed it against a brick wall repeatedly. I groan and move to throw my arm over my eyes to block the light, only to find that I can’t move my arm. I jolt awake and stare at my hand to find the cause of the problem. I stare for a moment, not comprehending. It looks like… no, it is I’m… Jesus Christ I’m handcuffed to the bed.
I sit up straighter and look around frantically. I’m in a plain white hospital room, alone.
I struggle to remember how I got here. Thoughts can’t seem to form past the throbbing in my head. Slowly the memories trickle in. Jamia, the show, the explosion. I remember the noise and something knocking on my face. Then nothing. Nothing to explain why I’m handcuffed to a hospital bed.
I wiggle my hand, just to prove to myself the cuffs are real. They are.
“Hey!” I shout. “Hey, what’s going on? Hello??”
A moment later a nurse enters, followed by two cops.
“What’s going on?” I shout at her. She looks nervously at the officers. One shakes his head.
The nurse walks over to the monitors and starts checking the readings and whatever. She never once meets my eye.
“Hey,” I say softer. “Why am I here? What happened? What about everyone else, are they alright?”
She ignores me and turns away from the machines. “He’s stable, you can talk to him now,” she tells the officers, then leaves the room as quickly as she can.
One of the cops shuts the door behind her and stands quietly in front of it. The other grabs the old folding chair that’s in the corner and pulls it up next to the bed. I eye him warily.
“We need to ask you a few questions,” he says curtly. I don’t reply.
“Can you start by stating your name for the record?”
Briefly I wonder if I should say Jason, but that doesn’t seem to matter anymore. Everyone knows who I am, if the police talked to anyone else in the band they might know I’m Frank. Besides, it wouldn’t take too much to figure out. And Jason doesn’t have any documents to prove he exists. No, it’s time for the truth. All of it.
“Frank Iero,” I mutter.
“Alright Mister Iero, Can you tell me in your own words what happened?”
Another tough one. I try to organize my thoughts. “We were on stage. I don’t remember much.” I pause, wishing I could remember more clearly.
The cop checks his notes. “We were told that Mister Way called for the stage lights to be cut halfway through the show, and that that was unusual.” He glances and me and I nod. “Did you ask him to do that?”
I try to remember. “Sort of, I was trying to explain something to him.”
“In the middle of the show?” he asks doubtfully. I don’t reply. He’s obviously not in an understanding mood, and there’s so much that he doesn’t understand.
He clears his throat and starts again. “Mister Iero, did you get Mister Way to stop the show and cut the lights so you could detonate the explosives you planted?”
His words don’t make sense in my addled brain. My head hurts and all I can think is what’s with all this “mister” shit?
I give a weak, “What?”
The cop looks frustrated. He talks slowly, like trying to explain something to a little kid. “Did you… stop the show… so no one would see you detonate the explosives?”
“Wait, did I… what?”
He sighs and looks like he’s winding up for round three but I cut him off as what he’s saying suddenly and forcefully clicks in my head.
“You think I did this?? I didn’t do this!”
“Alright,” he says though he clearly doesn’t believe me. “Then who did?”
“I don’t know. I mean, I don’t know his name or who he is but he was blackmailing my wife. Ask her! She’ll tell you, she knows who he is.”
The officer coughs. “We’ve already spoken with your divorced wife. She’s the one who told us you were stalking the band on tour in some sort of disguise. In fact all of your former band mates testified that you had a bad falling out and your tour manager told us you were making cryptic comments about some sort of danger just before the show. We know you were behind this incident Mister Iero. I would appreciate your cooperation.”
I stare at him in shock. Jamia told them I was stalking her? She’s the one who could finally end all the lies but instead she’s pinning this on me?? I can’t make sense of anything. How much of what she said was true? Was any of it? I slump back on the bed in shock, barely aware of the cops. I know he’s still talking to me but I can’t answer. I don’t notice anything he’s saying until I feel the cuff on my left hand release. Oh thank God, I think, they know they’ve made a mistake.
“-transfer you to county lock up until a judge can rule on the jurisdiction.”
He helps me stand then cuffs both my hands behind my back. It hits me. I’m going to jail.