By: EnZed Writer
This story is rated adults only and is suitable for persons aged 18 years and over, It contains gay sexual content which may offend or which may be illegal for viewing. Reader discretion is advised and all comments welcome. This story is also based on fact, certain names have been changed to protect their identities. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or ICQ me 78861014, perhaps even add me to msn.
This is dedicated to Rah and Larz, my real Nick and Tor. Without them I wouldn't have the nerve to go ahead with this story. Also to my friend Andrea who is always willing to lend a shoulder and Eddie. This chapter in particular is dedicated to you my friend.
Chapter 6 - Days Like That, Bryan Speaks.
I had been kicking myself ever since I left the house. Damn Bryan, you're a total dick head! How could you let your insecurities get the better of you? I was sitting on a bus on my way home from Nick's house. I had been beating myself up, regretting the harsh words that were said between me and Blair. I barely knew the dude but I felt a connection, you know? Like a zap between the both of us, it gave me butterflies deep inside just thinking about his smooth tanned face, his beautiful eyes and the caring spirit I saw inside them. Now I probably screwed up big time. But what can I expect from this guy? He doesn't even live here, I don't know, I never believed at love at first sight. Hell, I never believed in love, but man this dude was different.
I was born and raised right here in Sydney. My family lived in Newtown, but when I was old enough, I got outta there and moved over to Bondi. My parents are a bunch of pompous, self-absorbed true-blue ozzies. I was an only child. I went to a snotty private catholic school where I managed to just scrape by. I wasn't an academic, but then again I guess it was just a rebellion thing. I always knew I was gay and I didn't really do the whole freak out thing and go 'oh my god I'm gay' and spaz out, it was more like I realised it one day and thought 'oh well, I'm gay' and moved on.
My parents were cold, not very loving. No hugs or kisses or 'That's excellent son.' Only for when we were out in public when we had to put on the happy family routine did mum and dad put on their fake smiles and plastic gestures. Dad was some important guy in politics while mum was the 'respectable wife' from a highbrow family. My parents wanted me to be a doctor, while I wanted to be a rock and roller so I refused to do my homework, hung out past curfew, did the total opposite of what they wanted and before I knew it I was flunking outta School.
After abandoning all hope of getting my HSC, I decided to try my luck at getting work. I tried shit loads of jobs, but no one wanted to hire an under-aged 17-year-old high school dropout. Finally I managed to score a job at a local fish and chip shop. The place was a dump and they payed shit, but it was better than being labelled a dole bludger and better than living off the rents too. Mum and Dad however were not amused and were going spastic over what I was doing with my life, and called in my Uncle Danny to sort everything out.
Uncle Danny was my dad's younger brother. He's totally cool and easy to get along with. He's only 10 years older than I am, so he was more like an older brother than an uncle. He was my idol growing up and was the only one who showed any emotion or any feeling to me. He'd be like "great going sport" or "good on ya champ" whenever I'd tell him stuff, feeding the attention-hungry little nephew. I looked more like him than my dad, but apparently dad looks like Grandad while Danny looks like Nanna.
So one day he comes in to the shop, I was too busy cooking shit (metaphorically of course) by the deep fryer to notice it was him. I was humming away to some song playing on a crackly old radio when I heard his voice call over the counter.
"Bryan son, what the hell are you doing?" he said sounding angry.
I turned around and saw my Uncle Danny frowning, he looked older than usual, and disappointment was written all over his face.
"Hey Uncle Danny I um, well...I work here" I stuttered.
"Shit son, what time does your shift finish?"
I looked at my watch.
"About 40 minutes, why?"
"Me and you need to have a long talk ok? I'll be back when your shift finishes and you and I are going to talk about your future. No nephew of mine is going to work flipping burgers for a living" Uncle Danny said with resolve. He then turned and walked out of the shop. The first thing I thought was 'Great, lecture time!'
Uncle Danny picked me up straight after work and took me for a drive. We ended up down in Sydney harbour by the opera house. He took me behind out to where the lookout area was and lit a smoke.
"Son, you know I don't give a shit about that education stuff and I know your heart isn't in the books but you can do better than a fish and chip shop Bryan" he said taking a deep puff. I sat looking over the harbour. It was dead calm with the occasional ship disrupting the peaceful waves.
"I know Uncle Danny" I replied lamely.
"Look" he said sighing deeply then pausing "I got this friend Simon. Him and his girlfriend have this band and need a guy to do some extra shit for them you know sound checks, booking venues, basic managing stuff. I know you're in to your music so I thought this would be ideal for you. I mean it's not exactly glamorous but it's a start and at least my nephew won't be flipping burgers. Simon say's the money is good, you get to see a bit more of the country and he can teach you how to play guitar if you want. What do you think?"
He looked at me intently. I was seriously mulling this over. It did sound ideal, and meant no long nights in the kitchen. Plus I'd always wanted to be in the band, even though I wouldn't be in the actual band it would be close enough. I grinned.
"Uncle, that sounds like the best damn idea ever!" I said unable to hide my excitement.
"Hehe that's my boy, I'll give Simon a call tomorrow son," Danny said patting my back.
"Thanks a lot uncle, I love you, you know that?"
"I do, and I love you too son."
Simon wanted to meet me the following week at an old warehouse he owned in Coogee so I chucked in the job at the Fish and Chip store and never looked back.
That Monday Uncle Danny took me to meet Simon, my soon to be boss. I was nervous as hell about meeting him but when I look back there was no need to. Danny filled me in about him and it seemed they had known each other forever. They went to the same school, and were good friends growing up. From what Danny was saying, I could tell that this job would be ideal for me.
We arrived outside a rather old looking warehouse. As we entered through the side entrance, I immediately noticed that the condition of the outside was no indication of what the inside looked like. It was awesome to say the least. The inside area was the size of a footy field and was decorated with little memorabilia knickknack stuff from old football jerseys to posters of different musicians. One part was set up like a lounge area while a bit next to it was set up like a kitchen. There was a closed off bit that looked like a bathroom, and 3 other closed off bits that looked like bedrooms. In the middle was a stage set up with keyboards, a full drum kit, guitars, bass guitars and heaps of other stuff.
"Wow Uncle, this place is fantastic!" I said in awe.
"Yeah this is Simon's dream home" he replied patting my shoulder from behind.
"This place is the shit, I mean look at this!" I said pointing to a picture on the wall. "This looks like an actual signed picture of Elton John"
"It is!" came a voice from behind. I turned around and saw a man around the same age as Danny with long brown hair and the darkest blue eyes I'd ever seen. He reminded me of the lead singer from Red hot chilli peppers. He had gentle welcoming features and had a pleasant aura around him. From Danny's descriptions I could only assume that this was Simon.
"Simon! Nice to see ya my man, this is my nephew Bryan I was telling you about!" Danny said ushering me towards him. Simon held out his hand and I shook it.
"Nice to finally meet you Bryan, I've heard so much about you" he said with a warm smile.
"Nice to meet you too sir!" I said which caused Simon to laugh.
"Who you calling sir boy? Stick with me long enough and you'll know that I certainly ain't a sir!" Simon howled which caused us all to laugh. I liked this guy already. "Call me Simon man, none of that sir crap! Hell I ain't old enough to be a sir."
"Okay, Simon" I said grinning.
"That's it, you're catching on! Follow me!" he said as he walked towards the music stage. He jumped up and grabbed an acoustic guitar.
"Now your uncle tells me you have an interest in music?" he said while tuning the acoustic.
"Yeah I love music. I can play a little guitar but not much. I only played it while at school. I never owned one so I couldn't practice. I also do some singing and can play the bass a little" I replied.
"Well son it's a start. See this acoustic here?" he said holding up the guitar. I nodded in reply "Well son from today onwards I'd like you to have it. It was my very first guitar and I learnt a lot on it, now I want you to have it" he said as he handed it to me. To say I was shocked would be an understatement.
"I couldn't possibly take your guitar sir, I mean, Simon"
"Nonsense! Besides look around you, I have shit loads of instruments."
He was right, he did have shit loads of instruments!
"Go ahead Bryan, take it!" Uncle Danny said.
"Ok, thank you so much!" I said and took it.
"Good now here's the deal son, I need someone who can help manage the books around here and help book us venues. When I say 'us ' I mean my band. We practice three times a week and try and get as many gigs as we can. For most of us being a musician is a full time thing, but some of the band members do still have day jobs. That's where you come in, we need someone to balance out schedules, to manage the earnings and to keep things organised. I know it isn't fucking fantastic but if music is where you want to be, at least it's a step in the right direction. I won't lie, the money isn't great but it's reasonable plus you'll get free music lessons from me, and my girl Sarah can teach you vocals. What do you think?" I was about to give an answer when I heard a door shut to the left of me.
"Hey, speaking of my girl, hey Sarah baby I'd like you to come and meet someone!" Simon shouted out to her to come over. Sarah was beautiful to put it mildly. She had a slim figure with gentle facial features. She had blue eyes and small freckles with long red wavy hair and looked a lot like Julia Roberts. They were very well matched to say the least.
"This here is Bryan, Danny's nephew" Simon pointed towards me.
"Hi there" She said smiling. "Aren't you a little cutie?" she said while pinching my chin. I turned beet red. "I've heard so much about you! I bet ya the girls go crazy over you" she said while grinning.
I gave her a 'I don't think so' look. Then a thought came to mind.
"I've just got one question"
They all looked at me.
"What's the name of the band?"
All three of them laughed.
"The band's name is Forsaken Harmony," said Simon.
Well as the saying goes, 'The rest is history'. I moved in to the warehouse shortly after that, leaving my apartment in Bondi. Simon taught me everything I needed to know from booking venues to bargaining wages. He kept his promise and gave me free guitar lessons and taught me how to read music. Sarah thought I had a great voice, but I thought I sounded like crap. She worked with me to increase my vocal range. Some nights I played back up guitar, some nights I sung backup on vocals. On the odd occasion I would sing a solo but I preferred doing back up.
The band was well known throughout the bars in Sydney and was in constant demand. At one stage Simon and the gang were offered a record deal but turned it down. I remember Simon saying something like 'Record companies are nothing but money hungry wanking vampires with nothing better to do then suck the talent out of a band then screw them when their not in anymore'.
It wasn't long till they both figured out I was gay. Being on the road a lot, the female crowd noticed me and Sarah picked up on the fact I didn't seem to pay much attention to the fairer sex. She must have consulted Simon as they both confronted me and asked me straight out. I ended up crying thinking I was going to loose my job and loose the new family I had made but as it turns out, Simon's older sister was gay and she had set him and Sarah up so they were both very cool with the gay thing. Its times like these thinking back that you realise how blessed you are, compared to some of the spine chilling tales that you hear or read about. I'm truly grateful.
Hard to believe that only three years ago I was down in the dumps working a dead end job in a Fish and chip shop. Now here I am at 21, a manager of a well-known local band and a part time musician, not rolling in the dough but earning enough for a more than decent living and totally independent from the rents. They don't exactly approve of my musical lifestyle, my homosexuality and probably everything else about me but I don't let that bother me one bit. Danny, Simon and Sarah played better parental rolls than my mum and dad ever would or could and their approval meant more to me than my natural parents.
I was jolted from my trip down memory lane when I felt the bus suddenly stop. I looked up and realised I was already at my stop. I got off and walked around the corner to the warehouse. The warehouse was surrounded by local suburbia but most of the tenants would be out shopping or working. The street was quiet, which was typical for that time of day. I fumbled with my keys and opened the door. The warehouse seemed unusually quiet?
"Anyone home?" I shouted. No answer. I headed to my room and noticed there was a note pinned on my door.
Out to check out tomorrow's venue, be back around 4.
Damn! I forgot about tomorrows gig! Simon would be pissed. I frowned and headed in to the shower.
You know how sometimes that you get pre-occupied with your feelings you don't realise that you are doing stuff? I had just managed to "sleepwalk" my way through having a shower, getting changed, doing some house cleaning and playing some guitar. My thoughts were pre- occupied with Blair. Like the song, I couldn't get him out of my head. I looked at my watch and saw it was only half past two. I walked over to the lounge area and flicked the TV on. There was nothing but sad soaps on and to make it worse, it was Days of our lives. I don't know how many times these sad story lines get recycled and reused but for some reason people get hooked on the shit.
I decided to take some proactive action to get out of my funk and checked out the fridge, luckily there was some alcohol in there, just what the doctor ordered! I looked at the bottle, Tequila. I took a swig and shook my head. Damn that's some sour shit. I walked back and sat down in front of the Days of our lives and proceeded to get myself smashed.
Sometime later after polishing off a bottle of tequila and chartreuse to myself, I heard Simon and Sarah come in. I was busy swearing at the TV telling some dude on the screen about how his girlfriend was doing it with the gardener and having the gardener's baby yet, it was his. Damn soap operas. Simon walked up beside me and looked at me. I meant to ask him how his day was but it came out more like "hrrwwrr daaaee??"
"Bryan man, you are totally pissed? What the hell happened guy? We had that meeting for our next gig!" he said sounding more concerned than pissed.
"Arrrgh fuckkenn dude I managed to scooore aand fucckkk it up and the saaaaame tiiime" I replied with a hiccup.
"Hmm, I guess that explains the binge-fest huh," Sarah said as she picked up one of the bottles. She sat down beside me and sighed.
"Bryan, do you want to talk about it?" Sarah said while rubbing her arm up and down my back.
"Noo!" I replied drunkenly.
"C'mon, Bry my man, you know you can tell us anything." Simon said sitting down on my other side. I looked up to meet his eyes and saw that he had a very concerned look on his face. I turned the other way and Sarah had the exact same look, that did it. The dam broke and I proceeded to tell them the whole tale of meeting Blair, falling for him hard and managing to screw it all up. I left the explicit stuff out but they got the gist of the story. Both of them moved closer and hugged me while I sobbed.
"Let it all out baby, it's okay to cry" said Sarah.
"Yeah son, don't sweat too much about it. It just all seems like a misunderstanding" Simon added.
"Yeah babe, just let Blair sleep over it and you too. Give him some time to digest whats been going on" said Sarah.
"And tomorrow you can go beg for forgiveness, it doesn't matter whether you're in the right or in the wrong son, it's about taking ownership of the situation and trying to mend it. Obviously this dude means something to you if you are piss drunk in the middle of the afternoon" Simon said soothingly.
"Thanks guys" I said. But I think it sounded more like a grunt.
"Go have a shower bub, then get some sleep. You'll see, things will be all different in the morning" said Sarah. God she didn't know how right she was.
Well I'm not exactly a morning person, so when Nick came to wake me up it was little wonder that they got hardly any response from me. It was a bright Saturday morning and we needed to be on the road by ten. Amber's flight got in at eleven, then we were all going to drive over to the Blue Mountains.
"Blair you gotta get up man!" I heard Nick say
"mfffghgh!" I mumbled.
"Man, it's only 7am, fuck off!" I grumbled, throwing a pillow at him.
"Dude, its like 9am!" Sure enough, my watch said 9am. Shit!
"Okay okay! I'll go hop in the shower, make me a coffee though please? I feel half dead," I said walking towards the bathroom.
"Sure man but it might have to be a cold shower cause there's no hot water left"
"Aw shit, whatever man" I said shutting the bathroom door behind me.
While Blair was in the shower, a young man approached the door to Nick's house and knocked. Lynne was the first to respond.
"I got it, I'm coming!" she called out as she made her way down the hallway. She opened the door and a young courier was standing there.
"A package for Blair Mclean?" said the courier.
"Oh yeah, he's not available but I'll sign for it" Lynne replied. The courier handed over a small box and a card. It was addressed from Andrew. She signed the electronic pad that the courier held out and closed the door. Lynne didn't know whether to burn it or to give it to Blair.
Lynne turned around again to open a door and another young man was standing before her.
"Is Blair in?" asked an apprehensive looking Bryan.
To be continued...
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Thanks to all those who have written to me, I appreciate your comments, negative and postive.