Months had passed and I was a little dizzy on how things were going with the band. I had to confess, it was such a rush to be in a band like this that had its own following (albeit small in the grand scheme of things), groupies, people who knew who we were (when we entered small dive bars), etc.
Honestly, I was HOOKED!
And between rehearsals, creating new music, and our gig tour, I really hadn’t had time to miss Zachary. I didn’t tell him that though. But I was working! Doing REAL work! Not stuck in a dorm room, pouring over scripts or memorizing bogus stuff I’d never use again.
One thing we as a band had decided was we needed our own place to record music, rehearse, and lay our head down whenever we weren’t on the road. Doing that together would save us money. And believe me, money was tight. We weren’t rich. And honestly, the odds of us ever breaking out were low, but I liked how we were little by little gaining more followers. In ten years, who knew?
We were meeting with a realtor this morning who really thought she had the perfect place. She’d taken us to about five dumps that didn’t have enough space. But she promised this would be different.
“What do you think, guys? Isn’t it amazing?” she gushed.
It was a broken down, abandoned warehouse that in its heyday used to be an office building, manufacturing air compressors. I had to hand it to her–the place was super huge.
Mateo arched an eyebrow. “It’s rough alright. It’ll take years to remove all the rubble.”
“Can we afford this?” I asked.
Hunter gazed up and down the sides of the place. “Right on.”
Angelo shot a look. “Dude, don’t get happy with it yet. We haven’t seen inside. I’m not optimistic. It looks like it could crumble under our feet.”
Without going inside, the realtor took us out back to the enormous patio. She waved her arm over the surroundings. “Picture all your instruments here. Synthesizers, anything you want. Isn’t this a great place to practice? Of course, you could remove a lot of the garbage, but I know a company who will do it for free if you donate the junk to them.”
Gazing at all the weird contraptions, old cars, beautiful graffiti’d walls on the street behind us, my heart skipped a beat. This was PERFECT!
“How many bedrooms?” Mateo asked.
The realtor answered, “There’s a ton of space on the second floor that you could use for extra bedrooms. It’s some old offices. There are actually two formal bedrooms that have vintage furniture in them that you may like. Let’s go up and see. Shall we?”
I already knew this was our place. Sure it was filthy but the bones were stellar. And the price was just right. How could we pass it up?
Mateo wasn’t sure.
“God, I’d hate to know the size of the rats who’ve been living here for the past half century. The place stinks.”
After entering what used to be the cafeteria, a disgusting decomposing smell overpoured me. I almost wretched.
But I was determined. So what if we had to hire some exterminators? The guys had to listen to reason.
I sat down, sliding the metal, decrepit chair. “Look, we’re not rich so we definitely aren’t going to get a cozy pristine warehouse that would cost a million simoleons. But guys! Can’t you see through the dirt and grime? This is an amazing deal!”
Mateo clicked his tongue. “Are you going to clean it up?”
I laughed. “I’ll do whatever it takes to make this place shine. Think about how much fun that’ll be!”
In the end, Mateo caved. I already had Hunter on my side and it only took a little convincing for Angelo and Devontae to climb aboard.
And just like that, before we knew it, we were jamming in our own backyard with loads of room and a cool backdrop to go with our industrial tinged metal rock.
I waved my arms. “What do you think, guys? This couldn’t fit us more!”
Devontae plinked on his bass. “As long as the neighbors don’t call the police.”
“What are you talking about?” Hunter countered. “I think the neighbors are gonna be our biggest fans.”
Angelo crashed a symbol. “I give it one day and we’ll have to move inside.”
I shrugged. “Then we move inside. The top floor can be converted into a soundproof studio in time. Stop worrying!”
Mateo shook his head and fiddled with his controls.
We ripped rock riffs all afternoon and no one called the cops.
“Do you like it?” Mom asked as we entered my room. She’d hired some movers to place things in my bedroom since I was basically broke. She brought in my old vanity and bought some rugs and a Murphy bed to save space.
It wasn’t perfect but it would do for now. The walls were still draped in that awful office drab brown and we still hadn’t removed most of the office furniture, but I’d do that in time. Grabbing her in a hug, I whispered, “Thanks, Mom. You rock.”
“Don’t forget your father was in on it, too. He wanted to be here, but couldn’t get away.”
I guessed Dad’s heart melted a little from the time I’d first told him about me joining BLITZED. I was relieved.
“How is it living with four guys?” she asked. “Is it strange for you?”
“We’re all best buddies. They might fart and smell a lot more than women, but all in all, it’s been fun.”
Mom got a weird smile on her face. “Well…be careful. Guys are not girls and I bet one or more of them might be attracted to you and then everything will change.”
I thought about how much fun I’d had hanging out with them. I could safely say that Hunter and Mateo were becoming one of my closest friends. They didn’t show that either one had any attraction even though I knew they didn’t have girlfriends. The drummer, Angelo, did have a girlfriend and Devontae was gay.
I loved joking around with them. They were so laid back and we just “got” each other. Mom had nothing to worry about.
“You don’t have to worry, Mom. Me and Zachary are doing fine long distance and…” I lifted the side of my mouth. “I’m just not attracted to them at all. They’re like having four extra brothers. Honest.”
“Well, if you’re happy, I’m happy, sweetie.”
Aww…I loved my mom. She was like having cold vanilla ice cream on a hot summer day.
Life couldn’t get more perfect. A few months ago, I’d never predicted that I’d be living in the heart of Del Sol Valley in an old abandoned warehouse with a rising indie band who were becoming my very best friends.
Pinch me now!