Categories > Cartoons > M.A.S.K. > First Impressions

Rock'n'Roll Dreams

by Clutch 0 reviews

You never get a second chance to make a first impression, and for Matt Trakker, those first impressions are going to be vital if he's going to form MASK!

Category: M.A.S.K. - Rating: PG - Genres: Action/Adventure - Published: 2006-08-22 - Updated: 2006-08-22 - 1101 words

Disclaimer: All characters belong to Kenner and a bunch of animation studios. All I own is the situation, plot and backstory.

Author Note: First Impressions is a collection of one-shot vignettes which fit into my MASK universe at various different points. Each installment is a complete story. Each installment will say where, in the universe, it fits.

Story Note: This is a one-shot vignette which fits into my MASK universe just before the start of What it Takes.

With many thanks to Jonath, Ganeris, Beth and Nessa for editing, feedback and patient hand holding.

Rock'n'Roll Dreams

The Blue Note Club was about half full by the time Matt entered, just after seven o'clock. He wished he'd been able to convince Buddy to come with him. He got the feeling that Buddy was brooding over what had happened to Vanessa and Mac and this might have been just the thing to shake the younger man from the self-recrimination, but Buddy had been resolute, insisting he didn't want to come.

He shook his head. It would probably help when Dusty arrived at the end of the week; Matt strongly suspected the upbeat Texan would put a stop to Buddy's brooding by giving him something else to think about and a friend more or less his own age.


The voice dragged Matt's wayward attention back to the club, which had filled up while he'd been wool gathering.

"Mitch - good to see you."

Mitch, a tall man with a shaven head and eccentric dress-style (he was currently wearing a rather garish robe over jade coloured pants and a white open-necked shirt, which, for Mitch, was actually quite restrained), was an old friend. He'd been in Matt's class at Prep School, but his flamboyant style and careless attitude hadn't endeared him to that particularly straight laced establishment and Mitch had, eventually, left to take up a job in New York, working as an intern for one of the big record labels. Ten years later and he was a successful record producer and was currently travelling around the country with his latest protégées, a band called Fast Trax.

"You're going to absolutely love my boys," Mitch gushed, grinning. "They're just the best thing this side of Presley."

Matt lifted his eyebrows. "That good?"


At that moment, conversation had to stop as the band came out on stage and Matt got his first look at the band. The bass player, drummer and keyboard player all looked faceless and bland, which didn't exactly inspire much confidence in Matt that he was going to enjoy the concert. Then they started to play, and he guessed that all three had probably been hired for their talent rather than their looks. And then the lead singer/lead guitarist took to the stage and Matt stopped wondering where the band were going to get any kind of stage presence.

With his brown hair cut short and slicked back, in strict defiance of current fashions, mirrored sunglasses and an easy smile, the lead singer looked just right to be the next teen idol. With a voice that could sound soulful one minute and hard-edged the next, he had the talent to back up the looks.

When Matt said so, in a convenient pause between songs, Mitch grinned. "He wrote some of the songs, too."

"Impressive," said Matt, smiling. "You're right, they are good."

"Aren't I always?"

Matt laughed.

Most of the set consisted of upbeat, up-tempo songs that got most of the concert goers up and dancing, with the few ballads played being things that Matt recognised as cover versions, but just when he thought the band didn't know how to write a ballad of their own, the final song of the set rolled around and proved to be the best song of the lot. A ballad, it had all the raw emotion the lead singer could pour into it paired with some well-crafted lyrics and music.
"That last song's a sure fire hit," Matt observed as the band left the stage.

"Oh, definitely," agreed Mitch. "That's one of Brad's best." At Matt's puzzled frown, Mitch added, "The lead singer is Brad Turner. You should meet him; you'd like him."

Matt smiled. "Maybe. I ought to head off, though, Mitch; I've got---"

Mitch just waved a dismissive hand. "Peshaw! I know you, Matthew Trakker. You're going to go home and get a nice early night so that you can be bored to tears in a business meeting tomorrow. Well just for once, you can live a little. You're coming to the after show party."

"I don't get a choice?"

Mitch grinned. "Not a hope of one."

Matt laughed and shook his head. "Mitch, what would I do without you?"

"Live a very boring life," said Mitch knowingly. "Excuse me."

Mitch bustled off, presumably to see to the band and make sure everything was all right with them, leaving Matt to settle back against the bar and watch the comings and goings in the club.

One particular knot of people caught his eye. There was a girl and a couple of guys, just down by the stage, arguing about something. As he watched, the girl started to leave, only to be prevented by one of the guys. At this distance, Matt couldn't hear what was going on, but he could read her expression and see her shake her head. Whatever it was the guys wanted, she didn't.

That was grounds enough for Matt to decide to step in, but before he could move, someone else had done it for him: Brad Turner, who had been collecting something from the stage, had clearly heard enough.

Matt watched as Brad calmly jumped down from the stage and interposed himself between the girl and the guys. There was a moment of standoff, then Brad said something. The two guys scowled and started to walk away. Brad turned to the girl and asked her something. She started to nod when one of the guys, visibly angry, rushed at Brad's turned back.

The girl screamed, silencing the rest of the club.

Brad turned in time to catch his would-be attacker and, to Matt's surprise, execute a very neat hip-toss.

"The lady's said she's not interested," Brad observed, "so take the hint now and save yourself and your buddy some pain and leave."

For a 'pretty-boy' musician, he's got more than just stage presence, Matt decided, standing up as the two guys were forcibly removed from the club by bouncers. I think Mitch is right; I think Brad Turner and I might just get on very well.
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