Tom shows up for a photo shoot but gets a big suprise once he arrives. disclaimer:I didn't write this, SDH is the writer, i am just posting.
Tom happily walked down the street; they had just finished recording 'Just Push Play', it was in the can, ready to be pressed. Everything seemed absolutely fabulous; it was their best work yet. He'd caught himself humming a few of the songs while he was in the coffee shop. He had been telling the guys about this place, great expressos! So he had decided to bring some along, even though it was out of his way.
As he started his car, he thought about Joe. He had really taken this record under his wing. Joe had always tried to be as professional as possible, but usually he let Steven have the final say. Joe was very proud of this work. He was the first in the studio, and the last one to leave. Of course, it was at his house, but that was beside the point.
Tom pulled into the driveway, there was suppose to be some reporter from 'Guitar Monthly' here to talk to Joe and Brad, for certain, and the rest to get the 'feel of Aerosmith'. He was running late, he was suppose to be there 10 minutes ago...
Tom walked in the kitchen, and met Brad, handed him his cup, "Mr. Whitford," he gave a little bow.
"Tom," he took the cup, and took a drink, "Damn, your right! This is great coffee!"
"Expresso," Tom corrected. "I suppose everybody's been waitin' on lil' ole me."
"Well, actually there's been a SNAFU," Brad continued, "The photographer came first, the reporter won't get here until later. Oh, hey, Billy!"
Tom turned, to see a blond man, he seemed familiar, it was his eyes. He had a strong build, "Hey Brad; Tom, you and Steven must have both gotten stuck in traffic, huh?" He gave a good-natured chuckle.
Tom didn't know who the hell it was. He took another sip.
"Tom just got here," Brad replied, "I think he's still sleeping."
"Jo's been up since four," the man continued, "She's all worried about this photo shoot, I don't know why. It's not like it's the first one, and she looks great, I keep telling her that. I think it maybe some sort of mid-life crisis. I don't think she looks fifty."
Tom silently frowned. She?
"Has the photographer talked to you yet, Tom?"
Tom stared at him, "No, not yet." He was puzzled; he looked at this blond man, trying to place him. Those eyes, he'd seen him somewhere.
"Christ, Tom!" Brad exclaimed, "What the hell's with you? You act like you've never met Billy before!"
"Billy," Tom repeated.
"Billy Montgomery, Tom," Brad rolled his eyes.
Tom looked at Brad; he figured he'd better go along with his little joke.
"Well, duh! Of course I know Billy Montgomery!" Who the hell's that?
"Listen, I gotta go take the boys to the mall," Billy continued, "Thanks for the coffee, Tom." He gave a little wave, and he turned.
"That's expresso," Brad corrected, and smiled at Tom.
Joey came in; he gave a nod to the man leaving. Tom was grateful to save him from Brad's inane sense of humor.
"Hey guys," Joey took a cup, "Tom, glad you could make it. Steven was ready to call out the Calvary to find you."
"Steven beat me?" Tom asked. Man that never happened, Steven was always the last to show.
"Yeah, Hell's freezing over!" Joey gave a laugh, "They're photographing the 'Toxic Twins' now."
Joey sat there, nonchalantly drinking his expresso. He didn't remark about this 'Billy'.
"Suppose I better report in," Tom rose and walked down the hallway he'd been down thousands of times, he opened the door, like he'd done a thousand times before.
It was like any other photo shoot-lotsa lights, lotsa assistants standing around. He didn't know the photographer, or one of the subjects. He could only see them from the back, but it was Steven and some woman.
Steven was Steven: paisley shirt with striped pants; he had his arm around this woman. She had to have been some model that they had sent over; clad in skin tight black leather, leather boots, holding a guitar, black shoulder length hair, she had muscular arms, thin thighs, and a nice ass.
Tom stood there, watching the controlled circus, he looked around for Joe, he had to be somewhere.
"Mr. Hamilton, can I call you Tom?" one of the assistance's asked. She was cute, but young. "I'm Melanie, I was wondering if you needed anything?"
"Sure. Nice to meet you, Melanie; where's Joe?"
Melanie frowned; she motioned with her head. "Over there."
Tom was really getting pissed off; the photographer broke his chain of thought. "We will break and get some group shots when Tom's ready."
Steven turned and gave a wave to him. Tom looked as the model turned, and handed the guitar to yet another assistant. She had a great body, wonderfully round breasts. He looked at her face, it was a bit thin, but he knew those hazel eyes, that mouth, that nose. He felt his mouth open in disbelief; he could feel his stomach tighten.
He was looking at Joe Perry! Or at least his twin sister...
At the same time, this woman came over, "Morning, sorry that nobody told you about changin' the time." It was the same accent, the voice was more feminine, nevertheless it was the same accent, "You know how shit gets mixed up; I thought that their secretary told you about it. Anyway, I know how that pisses you off, and I'm real sorry."
Melanie walked away, leaving them there alone.
Tom stood there, just staring at her, just absolutely stunned. She finally gave a laugh, "What's the matter, Tom, is my hair alright?"
Tom nodded, "Yeah, it fine," he continued to stare. Her face was softer, not as chiseled as Joe's; the similarities were unreal.
"Tom," her face fell, "Is everything OK?"
"No, everything's just fine." He couldn't get over how much she looked like Joe.
She shook her head, "Well, then what?"
Tom looked around, "So who put you up to this?" He gave a slight smile as he spoke.
She was shocked, "Put me up to what?" she crossed her arms, she had the same eye ring, wedding band, the same necklaces and earrings.
"You know!" Tom motioned up and down at her, "This!!"
She looked down, "Leather? I like leather!" She frowned, "What you don't like the black? They got the same thing in red. Do you think I should try that?"
Steven came up; Tom motioned to him.
"Morning, Tom, nice to see I wasn't the only one running late."
"Steven, do I look alright?" the woman asked.
"Jo, you look fuckin' great!" Steven exclaimed.
"Do you think I should wear the red outfit? I don't think Tom likes this."
"What's the matter with it?" Steven hit him in the shoulder.
"Nothing, black's her color." Tom gave a shrug; he was completely confused.
Steven put his hands on her shoulders, "If you wanna wear red, Jo, that's fine, the black's great, too. You look fabulous! You can wear anything you want!"
"Thanks, Steven," She said, but she kept her attention on Tom.
"Everything okay?" Steven could feel the tension between them
"Yeah, sure, Steven. Tom's just being an asshole." She walked away quickly.
Steven frowned; this just wasn't some joke, "What the fuck's your problem, Hamilton? You know how sensitive she can be! I don't know if it's her time of the month or what; Christ, Tom, don't knock her down! I've spent all morning trying to convince her that-"
"I think I need some air," Tom walked away. She watched him leave, then she followed.
Tom stood outside; he heard footsteps behind him. Finally this joke was over!
He turned, expecting to see Joe laughing; the only person was this leather clad 'Joe'.
He looked at her, really looked at this lady, she strode quickly to reach him. She was gorgeous; he'd always had a thing for brunettes. Steven was right: she was fabulous! And the leather, well, God Bless the cow that died to make that outfit! Black was her color, although red would have been sexy, too. She was older, but she looked great, great enough that for a brief moment he forgot that he was a happily married man. He caught himself staring at her cleavage: her tone snapped him back to reality.
"Look, I said I was sorry that they changed the time! I couldn't help it! What the fuck do you want, Tom? Why are you acting like a fuckin' idiot? What did I do?"
He narrowed his eyes at her, "Who the hell are you?" he asked directly.
She was taken back, "You don't know me? Tom, I'm Jo!"
"Oh, honey, I'll give you credit. You have him down pat, the walk, the talk, the mannerisms; where did Steven find you? Or did Mark hire you?"
She stood there silent; just staring back at him, "I'm Jo Perry." she said simply.
Tom started laughing, he ran his hand through his hair. "You're Joe Fucking Perry!"
"Yeah, I'm Jo Fuckin' Perry!"
Tom shook his head; this is insanity!
"You found me in that bar," she continued, "Everybody said that it wasn't a good idea to have a woman guitarist, but you said that it didn't matter, just so a person could play, that was the whole thing. You believed in me, man. You fought tooth and nail to get me in this: Remember?"
He could see absolute sincerity in her eyes; she was good, very good. For a moment, he almost believed her.
"I just want to make you happy, Tom. I'm in no mood for a fight. If you want the red outfit, then I'll put it on."
He thought of at least a couple ways that she could make him happy. He snapped back to reality again.
"You wanna make me happy, honey, just tell me where Joe's at! We've got a lot to do today, and we'd better get goin' here," he said in an exasperated tone.
"Tom," she put her hands on his shoulders, "I'm Jo Perry, my husband is Billy Montgomery. We have four sons-"
"Joe Perry is a man."
"Do I look like a man?" she motioned at herself.
He looked her up and down, there was that cleavage again, "That's sorta my point, honey."
"I'm not your honey!" her eyes flashed with anger, "Hang on," She turned and went back into the house, she wasn't gone for long. She handed him a scrapbook. "Billy just put this together."
He recognized the photos; they were concert shots. Some were of him and Steven, him and Brad, Joey, and this woman. The photos seemed real, would anybody go to all this work to make him look like an idiot?
He silently paged through it, she pointed out the main photos of interest, "Here's us at Wembley," Steven was standing up front, singing, and had his arm around her, while she was playing the guitar.
She continued, "Here's Madison Square Garden," another concert shot, he was standing next to Brad both toward the back, by the drum kit, and she was playing to the audience, her wavy black hair flying out.
Then there were simple snapshots, like anyone had. Family shots, holidays, one picture struck him: this 'Jo' about eight months along.
"That was when I was pregnant with Roman, I really stuck out with him. I never thought I'd get back in shape."
Then one snapshot, it was of all of them. They were standing in a wooded area, Steven had his arms around her, all had sunglasses on, "Here's our one year anniversary of being clean."
Brad was Brad, Joey was Joey, Steven was Steven, he spotted himself, and then there she was.
A wedding invitation got his attention, 'Mr. William Paul Montgomery, and Miss Antonia Josephine Perry...'
"You introduced us, you and Billy went to school together. We got married a week before we recorded Dream On."
He flipped the pages, there was one of their first publicity photos, 'Jo Perry' was listed under her.
"So, you're saying that we were in Aerosmith, and then you left to do your own solo project, and then you came back," Tom filled in some of the blanks.
"Yeah, had some kids in between records and tours. You know all of this! You're freakin' me out; you know that! Did you hit your head or something?"
"No." He closed the book, he looked at her and handed her the book, "So were we ever, you know, end up doing the Horizontal Folkdance?"
By the shocked look on her face, he knew the answer was a definite no.
"I think I'll reschedule the photographers." Jo said, "I think it's a bad idea."
Steven came out, "Are you two coming?" He was still trying to see how things were going.
"Steven," she quickly motioned to him, "Something's wrong with Tom!" The panic in her tone made Steven race over to him. "He doesn't know me!"
"Tom, you feelin' OK," he started to feel his forehead.
"Oh for Christ's sake, Steven!" Tom exclaimed. He brushed his hand away. "I've had just 'bout enough of this! I'm not senile!"
Steven just looked into his eyes, "So what's the problem?"
Tom gave a laugh, "I just can't believe the two of you! I mean c'mon Steven, really, this has gone on long enough!" He shook his head, "I'll give you credit, you've kept a straight face through this entire thing! It must have taken you months to get this together!"
They both just stared at him.
"Look, where's Joe."
Steven looked at Jo, "She's right here, Tom."
Tom shook his head, "Joe Perry is a man! He's the Italian Stallion; he's got women throwing their underwear onstage at him! Christ, I've seen women meet him and get wet in three seconds!"
They both seemed shocked by this revelation, it was as if he'd said that Hitler was a great guy, and they should dedicate the album to him. They exchanged looks then both looked at him.
"Tom, I think that you'd better come inside," Steven took his arm, "We'd better get you somewhere."
He broke free, "Damn it, Steven! This isn't funny! I'm really getting pissed off!"
Tom suddenly had the sensation of falling.
Tom Hamilton sat up,picking his face off of the desk. Desk, where was he? He wiped his eyes, his face felt flushed.As soon as got his bearings he figured out he was in Joe's study, sitting in Joe's chair. He found the newspaper in his lap.
"Tom, oh," Joe walked into the room, "You're awake."
Tom sat there a second, "Huh?" There was Joe, the old familiar son of a bitch. Tom never noticed what beautiful eyes he had.
"I've got dinner ready," Joe said, "I thought I'd let you sleep."
"Dinner?" Tom repeated. He finally noticed the spicy smell of vindaloo.
"Dinner's ready," Joe shook his head, "You must have been sleeping hard. I made vindaloo, remember you were pestering me about it?"
"Great!" he got up and followed Joe into the kitchen. He felt a little uneasy; the way he'd been picturing 'Jo' in his mind. Man, this was so uncomfortable!
"You ever have a dream that just seems so real, that when you do wake up, you just don't know what's what for a while?" Tom asked as he sat down at the table.
"Yeah, sure, everybody does," Joe answered as he gave Tom his plate; Joe's vindaloo, fabulous as always. They shared some small talk about kids, schedules, and business meetings. Joe cleared the dishes, and brewed an after dinner pot of coffee.
"Your dream; what it good or bad?" Joe finally asked.
"Confusing is more like it," he ran his finger along his cup handle.
Joe gave a soft chuckle.
Tom knew he'd hear about this for a long time, but he had to tell somebody.
"I dreamt that you were a woman, and Billie was a man."
Joe laughed out loud; he cleared his throat, trying not to make Tom mad.
"I mean, I had weird dreams when I had Scarlet Fever, but this was so real! It was like I was awake."
Joe was quiet for a moment, barely able to contain his laughter; he just looked at Tom.
"So, was I hot?" Joe asked trying not to crack up.
"Oh yeah," Tom said in a low growl, raising his eyebrows. "You know me and brunettes!"