Categories > Celebrities > Guns n' Roses > Concrete Jungle Gym

Welcome to the Jungle

by SADIS 5 reviews

“This is the jungle mama, you’re gonna die.”

Category: Guns n' Roses - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Angst,Drama - Warnings: [V] - Published: 2013-03-19 - Updated: 2013-03-19 - 2629 words

Breaks groaned as the bus approached the turn-off from the freeway. Lurching forward it spluttered slightly as the driver’s foot eased off the break trying to alleviate the jerky motion. The combustion of the engine jostled the sleeping red head awake, pitching him forward into the back of the seat in front of him.

He sat up quickly, tucking his hair back under his cap. Stretching slightly, he looked around the vacant bus squinting from the harsh fluorescent light. Finding it to be dull, he peered out the window expecting to see celebrities on every corner and glitter and glamor rolling down the streets like a river. Yet, he was met with the forbidden darkness of an unexplored jungle. The paradise he had watched on TV when he was in town at the local electronics shop. He scanned the dim hazed streets for signs of the luxurious golden party life, but seeing nothing except a few figments and shells of human forms. Most looked shriveled corpses. Others were strung out and shaking uncontrollably. He sat back puzzled. He glanced down at his watch. It was around four in the morning. That must be why no one’s out, he reasoned.

The bus screeched to a halt with a terrible groan. The doors creaked opened. The boy fell forward again. This time he easily slipped between the seats. He groaned rubbing his backside as he ventured to climb his way out, but the bus just picked up speed again and trapped him. A heavy guitar case clanked to the floor with a brutal thud.

“Shit!” A worried and tired sounding voice cursed softly. A mop of blue hair followed by a long arm came into his vision as the figure bent forward to retrieve the case. Soft hazel eyes met his. “Oh, hi. I didn’t think anyone was on here.” He grinned wide, friendly. “Need a hand?”

The long arm, decorated with a black wrist cuff and small metal chains, extended to the small red head. The boy accepted it. He hid his slight resentment as the other hoisted him effortlessly into the air. The red head sat back onto the worn leather seat, tucking his legs underneath him.

“Just moved here?” The punk looking kid asked, pointing to the large rattlesnake suitcase by the window.

“Yeah.” The red head replied and was immediately freaked out that he spoke. He turned away, his jaw clenching.

“Cool,” said the other with a happy smile. He propped his guitar case in the adjacent seat and leaned against it. He wore long torn up jeans and a tight black shirt that was frayed at the collar and sleeves, with Sex Pistols spray painted across the chest. It clung to his slim torso. Around his neck lay a padlock on what looked to be an old bike chain. He placed a large booted foot against the side of the red head’s seat as he stretched his other leg out to its full length. His scuffed boot disappeared under the opposite seat. “I’ve been here about two months. Not a bad place once you get to know where shit is.”

The red head glared.

“Where ya living? Got family here?” The blue haired kid asked, ignoring the look.

“What’s it to you?” The red head snapped. The other looked wounded, but tried to shrug it off.

“Just asking. I didn’t know anyone when I moved here, but I wanted to get away from the drug scene back home, you know?” He moved forward. “That’s a really nice necklace.”

The red head glared as he enveloped the religious charm in the palm of his hand.

“I’m looking for a new roommate.” The punk folded his arms behind his head. “The one I had is heading to New York. Dunno why, but if you need a place to stay the rent’s dirt cheap.”

“I’ll be fine.” The red head hissed.

“Okay.” He bit his lip finally seeing he’d made the other upset. He turned his body around and threw his feet up on the seat in front of him. His chest doubled over at an odd angle moaning softly as his back stretched into the luxurious curled angle, easing the tension from the night’s work.

The red head continued to stare out the window, watching as the acidic neon lights slowly went out as the hours ticked by. Glancing back at the weird alien punk, he found him to have fallen asleep. He had to admit the kid has a sweet face. His head was now sunk into his chest with his eyes closed and his mouth hung open a bit. Faint exhales could be heard over the groaning bus engine. The red head had to smile a little. He didn’t hate the guy, but he wasn’t of a trusting nature.

A smirking wraith beckoned his eyes toward the window. A slender man in a long leather coat cackled silently back at him as he walked along the steaming pavement. A single orange flame burned at his mouth, lighting the way like a lantern. His boots trampled out his path without a care in the world.

Spying the gawking red head, the man shot him a laconic sneer that sent a paralyzing stake through the red head’s body. Yet, it filled him with another emotion he hadn’t felt for the last year. The red head forgot how to breathe as his limbs fell numb and hesitant. The sensations remained as the black-coated specter was swallowed up into the untamed darkness.

“Hey, boy, ain’t this where ya getin off?” The bus driver yelled rousing the blonde who in turn nudged the red head who jumped into the seat in front of him.

“Think he’s talking to you, man.” He jerked a thumb in the driver’s direction.

“This where you wanna ge’ off?”

The red head mumbled thanks as he grabbed his suitcase.

“I live over on Orchid, building 9 if you ever want to hang out sometime,” The blonde said with a parting smile.

The red head didn’t respond, but stepped off the bus.

“Hey, mama.” A warm, collected voice cooed, enveloping him in the darkness. The man he had seen outside his window stood right in front of him. He was slightly taller than him with hair slicked back, revealing dark hooded eyes that seemed capable of sucking out souls. An easy, taunting smile slipped onto his face as long white fingers beckoned him forward.

“I’m a guy, dickhead!” Axl roared. The shady fiend chuckled thickly.

“Don’t make much difference to me. I’ve got some good stuff.” His hands moved from his pockets to inside his long leather coat. “I can cut you a deal. New customer special.”

“What?” The boy asked naively, curiosity peeked. He leaned forward to see what the hell-spawned man was offering him. A small plastic bag filled with white powder flashed into his field of vision. The red head jerked back shocked.

“Um, no. No thanks man.”

“Come on, mama. It’s pure you can trust me.” The man laid a hand on his shoulder gently tugging him backward. The red head stumbled as he tried to wiggle free.

“I don’t do drugs. I don’t want any.”

“That’s not all I sell, honey,” The man hissed, clasping the smaller boy’s faded plaid shirt pulling him closer. “Just name whatever you need and I can find it for you.”

“I said, I’m fine,” the red head yelled, trying to shove the man off him. His suitcase fell to the pavement as his cap went flying. The darkness seemed to swallow his plea.

“Hey!” A voice cut through the obscure midnight as a hand wrenched the two apart, knocking them both to the cold concrete. The tall lanky blue haired punk from the bus stood in front of the red head, shielding him from the man in the black trench coat. “He said, he’s not interested.” His voice was a low growl, eyes narrow. He kicked the smaller man in the side. “Now get the hell out of here!”

“All right, calm down there, man.” The man slithered to his feet, giving a nonchalant smile as if he were parting ways with good friends. He looked past the menacing blue haired boy and spoke directly to the red head, “I’ll find you again. This is the jungle honey, you’re gonna die.” With a cruel snicker, the skeletal shade passed through the lurid gates into the condemned abyss of L.A. streets.

“You okay?” The taller boy turned, extending the same long decorated arm to the red head. He took it less begrudgingly this time. His foot tangled with the other causing him to fall forward into the taller. “Whoops.” The red head bolted from the other’s touch. The other just smiled broadly behind his crazy blue spikes.

“Sorry,” The boy mumbled, putting more distance between them.

Warm hazel eyes twinkled at the red head, cocking his head. “You didn’t do anything.” He looked down at the pavement. “Oh, let me help you.” Immediately he dropped to his knees and began gathering up the scattered clothes that had been spilt. The boy made a grab for a shirt the taller boy held.

“You don’t have to,” The boy said defensively.

“I just want to make sure you’re okay. I don’t use or deal.”

“You don’t?” The boy exclaimed. The other just smiled genuinely without any hint of reprimand.

“Nope. I’m clean.” He informed the red head as he latched the suitcase shut. “Oh.” The blue haired boy crawled over to the gutter bending down to pick up something. He held up a long thin gold chain. A tiny cross dangled at the end with a small sculpture of Jesus. “Is this yours too?”

The boy’s hand went to his throat searching. All he found was naked skin. He stiffened as he watched the other’s fingers curl around the thin strand of gold.

“That’s mine.” He gasped his hand still at his throat. The punk beamed.

“Good!” He placed it in the red head’s outstretched palm. “That’s too pretty and sacred to loose.”

“You…you’re…are you…religious?”

“Mm.” The blonde stuck out his lower lip almost pouting as he thought. “Well, I was raised Catholic although I haven’t been to church that much lately. I do have a tremendous respect for anyone of any faith.”

“Thanks,” the red head said for more reasons than one. The other nodded, helping the red head to his feet picking up his suitcase.

“Well, I guess good luck to you, whoever you are.” He turned and began strolling down the street with his guitar case in hand.

“Wait.” The red head called after him. The other turned, curiously. The red head froze. “I, uh, well is that offer for a place still open?”

“Of course!” He smiled wide. Running back to the smaller boy, he looped a long arm around his shoulders and tugged him along. The boy stiffened. “Oh, sorry.” He slid his arm off and extended his right hand. “I’m Duff McKagan.”

“Bi-Uh no. Call me Axl.”

“Not your real name?” Duff teased. Axl growled softly. Michael laughed. “Doesn’t matter. Feel like a beer?”

“Yeah, beer would be good.”

“Great! I could suck down at least a six pack. I’m a thirsty motherfucker.”

“Duff the fucking king of beers!”

“Ha! I like it.” Duff laughed and linked his arm with Axl’s dragging him along.

“Okay, Duff. Now we both don’t have to use our actual names.” Duff laughed again. “It’s Michael, but not even my own family calls me that!”

Slash lazed in front of the electronics store. It was closed and the TV’s had long since been turned off and faded to black. All that remained on the barren shells were passing reflections of a dying night. One leg was drawn into his chest, as the other lay sprawled in front of him. Raising a crinkled brown paper bag he slurped loudly watching the wind casually blow through the barren hollow streets.

“You look like a fucking blind beggar.” A sarcastic drawl informed him. A black shadow draped in a black leather trench glided toward him stealthily. Slash jumped, thinking a black apparition was floating towards him. The thick boots of the figure somehow found the ground and his old drug buddy appeared before his eyes. He smiled, fading back into his happily drunk state again.

“Got a dollar?” Slash asked in a crotchy old man’s voice. He grinned like a sheepish fool before downing more of the paper bag.

“And an unsuccessful beggar at that. Wonderful.” The leather-coated man seized the bottle taking a deep swig despite the protests of the drunk.

“Damn it, can’t you for once buy something other than Jack?” His voice was only mildly perturbed. The man wiped his mouth on his sleeve. Slash snatched the bottle back like an upset child and cradled it back into its proper place between his thighs.

“If you don’t like it don’t drink, Izz.” Slash retorted, holding up a long cigarette. “Got a light?”

Izzy grumbled, fishing in his pocket he drew out a small cylinder flicking it to life. He let Slash puff a few times then snapped it shut with a sharp click, spooking the curly haired youth slightly.

“Upset that red head gave you some trouble?”

“You mean you actually moved from this spot tonight?” Izzy teased.

“I was in the neighborhood trick or treating,” Slash said with a shrug. He peered up from behind his shades with mischievous eyes. “You like him don’t you.”

“Reminds me of someone,” Izzy said, dismissing the question. “You still have a thing for blondes or is Steven enough for you?”

“Life’s too short not to have more blondes.”

“Well fire head has a little blue haired protector you’d probably like. He’s got this sweet innocent angel face, spiky hair, but he doesn’t look like those drag queens from Poison. And he has nice long legs to wrap around you.”

“So you do want the red head.” Slash laughed, scratching his chin. “Think he’s a natural?”

“Only one way to find out.” Izzy smirked.

“You always did go for the hick type.”

“Keeping track?”

“I’ve noticed from time to time.” Slash sighed. “Steven said he’s going to get a lot of business tonight. Not sure what he’s up to though.”

“At least one of us is. We need a band. We need gigs.”

“We need drugs too!” Slash chewed his cheek.

“Which means we need money, I think I might have an idea,” Izzy said, flicking his own cigarette into the receding shadows that licked at his heels. “But we need a few more people and need to go shopping for a few large items.”

“I’m in!” Slash trumpeted in a drunken singsong voice as he raised his hand like an enthusiastic student. He paused clutching his head. “Hmmm, but can we do it tomorrow?”
“It is tomorrow,” Izzy stated, nodding to the thin line of yellow ochre peering between the alleys of the concrete jungle gym. The dark shadows crawled away giving way to eerie blue and tinted white light. Rats sniffed at the fresh morning air laced with dew. In fright they scurried back to the safety of their overcast gutters. With the roaches, they retreated back into the hollow L.A. underground from where they had crawled.
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