LB – Landing

After the forced landing (the glade was too small to make a proper one), they look each other and the landscape through the window.
“Hope we’re not in the brink.” says Bruce.
“Seems to be stable…”
“By now…”
Bruce looks at her face for a moment.
“That compass…” he says.
“Which one?”
“The real thing.”
She takes it out of her pocket again.
“It’s beautiful. Who gave you this?” he says taking it to behold.
It’s a careful handicraft, made in the style of the ancient instruments, wrapped by a box of leather and thin hard wood. It has a tiny lock and a ring for attaching purposes.
“Why you think it’s someone who gave it to me?”
“I know when it’s a gift.”
“Oh! David gave it to me.”
“Which one?”
“The Scottish.”
“Ah! Is he into you?”
“Well… I didn’t ask…”
Bruce makes a noise somewhat similar to a laugh. After studying it a bit more, he gives it back to her.
“Really good.”
Sylvia saves it inside her pocket. The compass still looks like if it went mad, but moving slower.
“Yeah, he said that given I’m always traveling and taking photos, it would be of use.”
“Oh, yeah!”
Bruce carefully stands up to see if any inner damage was done to the aircraft. Meanwhile, Sylvia takes the radio to make an emergency call.
“Mayday Mayday Mayday. Aircraft…”
Bruce comes back thinking she stopped because she didn’t know the airplane data.
“It’s written there.” he says pointing a paper hanging at her right.
“No. It’s not that.”
“What’s wrong?”
Sylvia pushes the radio button; only the noise of opening/closing communication is audible. There’s no radio signal, not even background noise.
Sylvia looks at Bruce in despair. If they can’t communicate, who’ll seek them… And when.
Bruce ponders for a moment, moving nervously.
“Let’s go outside. Maybe we can fix the antenna.” says Bruce.
“Okay.”
They open the door, loom and jump outside.

LB – Flying

Sky is blinding bright blue with some flocks of white clouds. It’s a beautiful day, not too hot and not too cold, with a soft breeze blowing from the tail.
Sylvia is seating like a good girl admiring the view. Bruce smiles proud of himself.
Given is a warm day they aren’t much wrapped up. She has a jean long jacket, tight elegant pants and short leather boots. Bruce is wearing pilot jacket, comfortable long pants and tennis.
Airplane motors are purring soothingly and instruments show a nice speed of 100 mph.
Life is simply perfect.

“I really think I should give him a call…” says Sylvia pensively.
“To whom?”
“Steve.”
Bruce moves uncomfortable in his seat.
“Don’t talk about him when you’re with me.”
Sylvia downs her head.
“Nothing bad against that old hairy arse. But you know, you’re with me right now so…”
“Yes. You’re right. I’m sorry.”
Bruce shakes his head. After a moment of silence, he points out a group of clouds saying:
“Look! What about climbing on the clouds?”
Sylvia raises her head and nods happy.
“Yeah!”
“Let’s go!”

They didn’t really climb on the clouds but rather went through them. Then they get out and keep flying a stunning bright sky.
“But I can do many other things…” says Bruce smiling.
“Yes?”
“Oh, yeah! But I need some inspiration…” says Bruce stretching his neck, offering a cheek like a small child expecting a cuddle.
“Oh…!”
Sylvia shares some little kisses with him, planting them on his face.
“Balls to the wall!!” says Bruce enthusiastic, suddenly accelerating the airplane.
Sylvia giggles delighted as he makes all sorts of crazy things flying.
“To the Empire of the Clouds!!!” says Bruce leading the aircraft to a huge flock of cotton clouds.
They fly inside and a bit over the clouds for a long while. Amazed, Sylvia takes some photos. Bruce flies looking at her from time to time with a proud satisfied smile.
Eventually, they leave the clouds. By now, fuel level is reaching the half tank indicator.
“Okay, let’s find a nice place to have our private party.” says Bruce with a naughty expression.
“Oh! You make it sound like an orgy!” says Sylvia laughing.
“No, no. No orgy. Only you and me.” he says and winks.
But when they see the ground again, can’t find a place to land on. Everything is trees on uneven fields.
Bruce smiles as if he knew exactly what is going on, makes a turn and keeps flying confident they’ll find a place. After all, it’s England, it’s not like it’s an infinite territory…

“I think we’re going in the wrong direction…” says Sylvia looking at the airplane compass.
“Yeah?”
“Look… It’s pointing to the other side.”
Bruce takes a look and frowns. Then make a turn but the compass keeps pointing at the same direction. Bruce is starting to get nervous. Sylvia pulls her phone out of her jacket pocket. The compass in her phone is pointing to a different direction. Then she pulls a real compass from the other pocket. This last one is frantically pointing everywhere. She lays both things on her lap and calls Bruce’s attention. He looks and curses.
“What the…!”
By now, fuel level is half tank, so he has to think fast.
“We must land.” announces.
“Yeah, but where?”
Fields below looks like chopped with an axe, and wildly populated by nature.
Over their heads, sky is uniformly clouded. They find it strange, but isn’t the moment to discuss it.
“Look! There!” says Bruce pointing out a far place at their right.
There’s a glade next to a brink. Bruce will take no risks, so he tells Sylvia to hold tight and fly there to force a landing.

Little bird

“Hello? Sylvia? Ah, finally! I’ve been calling you for the last 10 minutes!”
“I was busy”
“Organizing your party? Yeah, about that… you should come here”
“Now? Why?”
“I have a nice surprise for you”
“Can’t you tell it on the phone?”
“No, you have to come here”. Ah, never say no to Dickinson… It’s Sylvia’s birthday today and he’s planning to try a new aircraft, making the first flight for her birthday, as a present. Therefore, she reaches the airport and finds him all smiling, next to his new toy.
“Oh! You’re there!” says Bruce.
“Hi!”
“Finally! You took an eternity to come!”
“Sorry.” Sylvia says confused.
“Look at this beauty.” he says pointing at the plane behind him with a wide gesture of his arms.
“So pretty…” she says with shining eyes.
“And look inside…” he says guiding her to the airplane.
She looms to see the interior. There’s some boxes at the bottom and nothing else. But being a light aircraft like that, there isn’t much room to carry many people or packages.
“I planned a nice journey with a picnic… Only you and me.”
Sylvia smiles delighted.
“What do you say?”
“Sounds so good…!”
“Amazing!”
With a touch on her back, Bruce Dickinson invites her to get in the plane.
“Shouldn’t we tell Steve…?” asks Sylvia.
“What for? That wanker won’t come anyway. ”
“No, well, no… Not to invite him, just…”
“Let’s go, come on.”
Sylvia gets in the aircraft followed by Bruce. He sits down on the pilot place and she takes the copilot.
She looks around excited and happy like a child anticipating a surprise. Bruce asks permission through radio and starts the motors.

 

“Bright days”

This is a tale, horror topic, written in collaboration.  It’s the third of its serie but it doesn’t matter because they’re independent from each other. 

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It’s the first day of summer, Sylvia is tired of her work and decides to take proper holidays. A journey would be a nice idea under her eyes, so she goes to the nearest bus station with her luggage, searching for a way to finally relax herself. She waits for the bus, for an unknown destination… bus is late as usual, but this allows her to make new acquaintances. Sylvia sees this guy on the floor and looks away; he reminds her too much her former boyfriend, a guy that she hopes not to see ever again. She also hopes not to see any of his or her friends. All of them got her completely stressed, sick and exhausted. She needs a start over urgently.

Sylvia sits down in a painted bank to wait for her bus. She closes her eyes and let her head hanging backwards. People talking and making noise around come and go, a bus motor slowly stops in front of her, another bus starts far from her bank, hurried people run all over the place, two guys have an argument a couple of meters away but their voices get faded by the station man calling to last passengers to get on the parting buses. Sylvia rises her head and opens her eyes. Her bus has already a line of passengers, if she doesn’t hurry up she won’t find a place. So, she takes her bag and her backpack and walks to get in line.
When she gets in the bus, she search an empty place, sits down and looks through the window. Her backpack is in the basket, below her head but her bag is on the floor protected by her legs. Despite of summer heat, she’s using long pants and sport shoes. She closes her eyes and leans her head on the crystal. Distant voices discussing, a child crying and the motor purring cloud her mind. Just few minutes more and her trip begins.
~~*******~~
Bruce gets rid of his guitarist but he knows they won’t let him alone that easily. Isn’t like they suffer of a total lack of talent, but drunk and drugged mates are the worst company. Bruce gets in the bus looking around. There’s still empty seats when he sees his guitarist jumping into the bus as well. Knowing him, he surely bought a ticket too. Recalling an old trick, Bruce looks for an old lady with no luck, so he sits besides the nearest woman he finds. He pretends to be busy with his bag as the guy passes, but of course his guitarist recognises him anyway.
“Listen, Shorty…” says the guy all leather and oxygenated hair.
“Don’t call me Shorty”
“Okay, man” Bruce twists his mouth, if at least could talk a little bit less louder… “Listen, you’ll missing a great chance, you…”
“Sssshhh… Don’t you see she’s sleeping?!”
The guy roughly looks at her and talks again.
“Listen, I tell you…”
“Shut up!! Let my cousin sleep!” says Bruce trying to speak undertone.
“Your cousin? Do you have a cousin?”
“You’re looking at her right now.”
“I didn’t know you have a cousin.”
“Well, now you know.”
“Yeah, whatever. I’m telling you…”
“Shut the fuck up!” says Bruce clinching his teeth “She’s ill, have some respect!”
“Why should I? It’s not my problem.”
“Well! It’s MY problem.” says Bruce getting up.
But his guitarist is not impressed, he’s almost 20 centimetres taller.
“I don’t mind. The point is “
“The point is you’re annoying my arse off.” says a tall and tattooed man standing right beside the guitarist “Get off! I can’t sit.”
A word between why and what appears in his mouth and fades. Now this is an impressive man. Other voices rise from the bunch trying to get in the bus. “What’s wrong?” “I don’t know ” “Why that dude is stuck there?” “Move on, mate!!!” The guitarist looks around but now the bus is almost complete. He tries to leave them space but is cursed by an old man who got an elbow in his eyes. The guitarist throws gross words to the old man. Frowning faces arise everywhere looking angry at him. The guitarist realises that he can’t fight against everybody and now the bus is full, so he turns around and leaves the bus. Passengers slowly get back to their respective business, the old man keeps grumbling for himself, the tattooed man reaches his seat and Bruce sits down. Sylvia is looking in curiosity. The bus starts. Bruce rubs his forehead, his headache is striking back.
“What happened?” asks Sylvia.
“Eh?”
“Do you know?”
“Uhm… just a fight, you know, there’s no place and that…” Bruce avoids details, ashamed of knowing such a person.
“Ah… looked as if you know him… that’s why I asked…” Bruce gulps.
“Oh, no, no. I mean, I know who is but is no friend of mine.”
“Ah… Who is?”
“Ehrr….”
“He looks so queer and you said you know him… Is he famous or something?”
“Yeah, yeah, but long ago.” Bruce leans towards her as if he were going to say a secret. “Now he’s drowned in alcohol, you know, rock star life and so… that crap”
“Ah!”
“Yeah! I don’t do that.”
“Don’t do… what?”
“Getting drunk, wasting talent…”
“Ah!”
But now the mystery is solved for her so she lost her interest. Sylvia turns her head and looks through the window. Bruce looks for his headphones inside the bag. He feels better now his band mates are faraway and people don’t confuse him anymore with them.

During the first days Sylvia just slept almost all day and night long inside her bungalow. Then, she configured her cellphone to discard certain phone numbers. And eventually, she took a book to read at beach. Meanwhile, Bruce turned off his cellphone, drank a lot of beer, met people and beheld pretty girls. It seemed that everything was left behind and life was shining before them.
Sylvia is sitting at a beach table under an umbrella. She’s reading “Study in scarlet” by Arthur Conan Doyle, a paperback version. Spite the strong heat, she’s wearing long pants and shirt, cotton but covering. Her long black hair falls in a lose horsetail on her shoulder. When Bruce passes by her side, he looks at her as he does with every woman near to him. The book calls his attention making him stop and think seriously about talking to her. For that moment, he’s almost stepping the water. Bruce hesitates, she doesn’t seems to be a friendly creature… but maybe she’s just shy. Then he undoes his way.
“Hello!” says sitting in the other chair. Sylvia looks up.
“Hello!” Though she isn’t smiling, there’s something in her dark eyes that invites to sympathy. “Sherlock Holmes?”
“Yes”
“I’m a huge fan of Conan Doyle.”
“Really?” She looks kind but no smile yet.
“Yeah, but not only Sherlock Holmes, horror stories, History novels…. everything.”
Finally, Sylvia smiles. A gentle smile with a touch of sadness or tiredness in her eyes.
“Wow! Amazing!”
“Yeah!” Sylvia smiles a bit more.
“Can I ask away?” says Bruce.
“Sure.”
“Why are you using pants? Only looking at you gives me fever.” He’s smiling like a 5 years old child hoping a candy.
“Oh, well… It’s comfortable… and I’m too fat…”
“Bollocks!”
Sylvia close the book and looks at him serious.
“Wear whatever you like.”
“I don’t think so…” says looking at him distrustful.
“Come on!”
“I’m not skinny.”
“Who cares??!”
Sylvia looks at him annoyed. She’s up to her forehead of mockery.
“Come on! I bet you if you wear a skirt in 15 minutes a man we’ll kiss you.”
Sylvia makes a noise between a cough and a laugh.
“That’s stupid.”
Her eyes became cold, watching him like a wolf deciding if attack or run.
“Wanna bet?”
“No. It’s stupid.”
“Oh, come on, make a bet with me!” he smiles even more widely “You can ask me anything if I loose.”
“Anything?”
“Yeah!”
“Okay… ” she stares at him for over a moment “Pay a dinner, everything included, anywhere.” Sylvia is sure he’ll reject, but Bruce accepts enthusiastically. Surprised, she carefully leaves the book on her chair and goes to her bungalow. Bruce beholds her as she walks away thinking «I won’t lose».
In the meantime Sylvia isn’t there, Bruce looks at the girls walking on the beach. Not all of them are of his taste but girls in bikini are always a great thing to see. Sylvia reaches his chair and quickly sits down. Bruce notices her presence but the table is annoying him. Sylvia struggles to rescue her book from under her butt. Bruce stands up and move his body to see her completely. Now she’s wearing shorts and a fresh blouse with a long décolletage everything change.
«Curvy, kind, smart…. ask me anything, baby» he thinks with his eyes and mouth open.
“And now, for something completely different…” he says.
She laughs shortly recognising that old joke.
“Let’s go to swim.”
“Eh?!”
Her smile fades. Bruce jumps and place himself next to her.
“Oh, come on! We’ll end like grilled shrimps here. Let’s go to the water.”
“Well… “
“You have a bikini, don’t you?”
“Uhm…”
“Under your clothes. Isn’t that a bikini?” he says pointing with a finger directly to her breast.
“Yes.”
“Let’s go then.”
At the same time she’s saying “Okay” he’s taking her by the arm and walking to the sea.
«She’s too serious, but I’ll fix that.» he thinks as they jump into the water.
Once Sylvia got in the sea her mood changed completely. She swam and played as happy as anyone else. By the evening, they get out of the sea tired but amused. Beach is almost empty and shadows are getting longer. Some birds scream as they pass flying low. Bruce spends an arm on her back.
“We can spend our lives here, away from your assholes and my assholes”
“Yeah…. “
“It’s beautiful, and you’re beautiful. Should be perfect.”
“Yeah… ” She’s still smiling but her eyes got serious, as if a bad memory ran through her mind. “What do you say, ma belle?” says touching playfully her nose.
“You! Madcock!” They both turn to see who’s yelling. Four tall guys looking furiously at them, stand next to their table. “Can you stop fucking and come here??! We have to talk!”
Bruce mumbles rude words, he thought he could get rid of them. He walks towards them but stops at a safe distance. Sylvia stands and folds her arms under her breast, calculating in silence. Bruce smiles with his most polite expression.
“Hi, guys!”
“Can you pay some attention to your band mates?” says a guy who’s looking askance everywhere. “I left the band.”
“Look, I think you were angry and you have your reasons, but ” says a redhead at front.
“We already had this discussion.”
“We can talk and fix anything wrong”
“I fixed it. I left.”
“Oh! This is endless!” says Sylvia throwing her hands impatient. She starts walking in the bungalows direction.
“Where are you going, dear?”
“Leave her! It’s a bitch!”
“Come on, my dear! Don’t leave me alone!”
Sylvia turns and looks Bruce right into his eyes.
“This has no end! I’ll bring my gun.”
Then she turns and walks again. Bruce jumps and starts talking anxiously.
“WAIT! No, no… come on, dear!” she keeps walking and he goes after her “Listen to me, is not that serious “
She stops and face him.
“They won’t shut up and they won’t…”
“Yeah, but… a Magnum? Seriously? I mean”
“So what?! A 22 it’s useless now!”
The guys look each other and the couple, but Sylvia and Bruce are too focused on their argument to notice them. Sylvia gets more and more upset making gestures towards the bunch, insisting in the necessity of her gun. Bruce jumps and screams, completely out of control, complaining about all the heavy work he’d have if she uses her 45.
“Remember that asshole you had as lover! A fucking tall rugbier!!! And I have to carry him somewhere?? No way!! “
“I won’t discuss! I…”
They both look at the same point, his band mates had magically disappeared.
“Now that’s fast… ” she says.
“Brilliant! ” he says zestful “You were brilliant!!”
“Oh, well…. thank you.”
“You don’t have a gun, right?”
“No, why?”
Bruce laughs happy like a child going to the park. They look around. Now it’s almost night and the sea wind is starting to blow.
“It’s getting too dark, let’s go to our bungalow.”
“Our?”
“Your?”
Sylvia hesitates.
“Mine?”
Sylvia nods.
“No. I prefer mine.”
“Cool! Let’s go.”
They gather their things and starts walking to the bungalows. Their voices and laughs fade carried by the wind.
They were pleasantly surprised with the food. The Bungalows Resort seemed to have an amazing kitchen with delicious and generous dishes. They ate so much that after meal they could only drink an Ale beer and fall asleep. Deep at night, sounds of something grazing the floor come and recede.

Despite is summer, days aren’t too hot and nights are fresh. Maybe because of this, maybe because isn’t a very well known place, the beach has some people but it’s mostlyt lonely. Something that Bruce loves; he had enough of people in bunches for a long time. Sylvia doesn’t like bunches or populated places under any circumstances, so she’s also very comfortable there. They can sit on the sand, with waves licking their toes, and talk about anything while beholding infinity. Peaceful empty days apart from world.

“You know where we could go?” says Sylvia after a long silence under a tree, in a small forest meters before the sea.
“No. Tell me, baby” says Bruce who was almost asleep on her shoulder.
“To The Eagle”
“To…. what?!” he says waking up completely.
“It’s a house… kilometre away from here… on the beach… according to what I’ve been told, it’s abandoned and it has an eagle on its frontispiece. Hence the name.”
“Sounds interesting.” he says vaguely.
“According to what I’ve heard, it was built or used at least, as a refugee for escaping nazis. The signal to recognise the place was the stone eagle on it.”
“Really?” Now Bruce is getting interested.
“Well…. I don’t know, I didn’t see it by myself. Maybe it’s just a legend.”
“So is not sure if there’s any house… “
“No, no. The house exists. What I don’t know if it’s a ruined nazi refugee, or maybe a guy with nazi sympathies. Or if it’s just a house with an eagle, and people later give it other meaning… “
“I see…”
“Like the swastika. It was a solar symbol until nazis tainted it.”
“True.”
“Don’t you think it would be great to go there and take a look?”
“Oh, yeah!”
Sylvia looks at his face, surprised.
“Do you like it?”
“I do.” says Bruce also surprised.
“Do you like my idea?”
“Why not? It’s a very good idea.”
Sylvia looks again to the sea.
“Wow! I thought you only like your ideas….”
His face gets overshadowed.
“I’m not an egocentric bastard as you seem to think… “
“Ah…. I’m sorry.”
“You’re not.”
Bruce stands up and cleans his clothes. Sylvia looks down, slightly sad.
“Well, let’s go.” he says offering a hand. She looks up.
“Where?”
“Don’t you wanna see that house? Well, let’s go.” and smiles.
She accepts his help standing up as well. She cleans her small clothes. Then, they start walking at an easy pace.
The house was old and dilapidated, mostly white coloured, with uneven trees behind. A huge eagle with half spread wings were placed on top, right in the frontispiece. It seemed that the house used to have something else like a decorative roof or a crest, but nothing left today. They wandered around, peering in the surrounding woods, lurked inside through the broken wood flaked off door. But shadows were getting longer so they decided to walk the way back to the bungalows and come back next day.
They opened their eyes and heavy rain was already falling down. They look sadly through the window, so much water that it’s impossible to see outside.
“There isn’t a legend about full moon and rain?” asks Sylvia.
“Have no idea. Is it full moon today?” says Bruce.
“Mmmm… yesterday or today…”
Bruce looks frustrated, he already planned their small excursion to The Eagle. Now he has to dump everything and think about something else. Sylvia starts to look for her book inside her backpack. Suddenly, Bruce jumps, he just had a great idea to spend their time.
“Do you like swords? No innuendo.”
“Yes, I do.” she says sitting on the floor with her backpack, opening her book.
“Look at this!” Bruce takes something from inside a closet. Under her curious eyes he reveals two Japanese swords, a katana and a wakizashi.
“Aren’t they beautiful?” he says hopeful.
“Indeed!”
She’s so notoriously interested, that he starts to talk about the swords, their differences, their features, laying them on her lap for her to touch them.
“Are you a kendoka?” she asks fascinated.
“No, I’m a fencer.”
“Really? Show me!!”
Bruce smiles and jumps enthusiast. Sylvia turns her head, thoughtful, and says:
“I made two years of kendô. But I have no patience to keep on…”
“Why not? Come on!”
Sylvia looks at him. She’s still sitting on the floor. He’s on his feet with a fencing sword in his hands. “Show me!”
“Your desires are commands to me, mademoiselle.” and bows in a courteous gesture.
Early, they prepared a bag with sandwiches, lantern, bottles and some other needful stuff. Sylvia hung the wakizashi from her waist after asking him permission to use his Japanese swords.
“Yeah, go on. I’m not skilled with them, I wanted to practise… you know, as holiday. But these guys don’t leave me alone.”
Sylvia looks at him surprised. Bruce is pushing the stuff inside the bag.
“Didn’t they died yet?!”
“Hah! So I wish! No! Those tossers sent me a telegram today.”
“Impressive!”
“There’s nothing impressive in a telegram, dear!” says Bruce impatiently “It has two hundred years of history.”
He looks up annoyed. His eyes stumble upon her; she’s wearing a short dress showing her legs and boobs.
“Not the telegram! It’s impressive that they didn’t kill themselves with so much cocaine.”
Bruce, staring at her, laughs and says:
“Did you noticed then?”
“Of course I noticed! I’m not Lestrade.”
Bruce smiles following her legs down until her sandals.
“It was stupidly notorious. And I’m pretty sure they’re running out of money and that’s why they’re insisting so much.” she adds.
Bruce looks at her face. They stare each other.
“What?” finally she asks.
“Nothing.”
Bruce moves his head as if he was driving away a gnat. He takes the bag and smiles. She smiles back.
“Let’s go!”
“Sure.” she says as she crosses the door.
“Very nice dress…” he says beholding her from behind.
Bruce and Sylvia walk following the coastline until reaching the house. It’s a warm but windy day, the morning sun whitening the pale colours of that hidden place. Now, under sunlight, they can see the walls seem to be attacked at some moment.
“Woa! It’s falling into pieces” says Sylvia taking a closer look.
“But these look like bullets… don’t you think?” says Bruce touching gently but curious some tiny holes.
“Mmmm… yeah, looks like.”
An enthusiast smile shines in his face. The idea of nazis and locals fighting there popped up in his mind.
“Let’s take a look at the back… We may find something of interest…”
And without waiting, starts walking there. She follows him after taking another look at the wall. But house back has nothing to offer but an old rusty ladder. They look up to see where it ends. Or there’s some kind of balcony or gazebo over there, or the roof was blown away long ago. Bruce points to the top looking at her. Sylvia looks and nods accepting. It’s plenty of sand down here, the ladder isn’t too high and they’re small. They can get hurt but is unlikely they’ll kill themselves going up. Bruce quickly climbs using the ladder, and after a moment she does the same.
When they reach the house top they find it empty with some spare old garbage here and there. Maybe it had, long ago, a roof; but if that, sea storms destroyed it, because nothing remains but a couple of blackened sticks. From there, they can see the back of the eagle. At the base of it, couple of meters away, there’s someone sitting on the ground, focused on something in his lap. Bruce makes a small noise to call his attention. The sitting man turns to see. When he realises he’s accompanied by other human beings, he smiles faint-heartedly.
“Hi ” says standing up. Is a tall long haired man, with strong tattooed arms. Spite his impressive appearance, is a shy guy with a nice smile and a kind look. He still holds a pencil in a hand, on the floor there’s block of papers and a small wooden plank he uses as drawing table. Sylvia peers over his arms.
“Oh, you’re drawing!”
The guy looks nervous.
“Oh, well… yeah… but… “
“Can I see?”
The guy hesitates a bit.
“Yes, sure.”
Sylvia sits down on the floor.
“Hi! Bruce here!” says smiling and offering a hand.
“Hi. Steve. Nice to meet you.” says shaking his hand and smiling politely.
“Look, Bruce! Drawings of the eagle!”
Bruce kneels to see.
“Wow! Very good!”
The guy smiles ashamed.
“No, nothing killing… “
He speaks with a mild cockney accent.
Bruce looks at him, and then at the papers again.
“Come on! You’re very good on this!”
“You think? Well… thanks…”
Bruce looks at him, the guy is slightly blushing.
“You are…?” says the guy putting a hand on her shoulder in a light gesture.
“Sylvia.”
The guy smiles but says nothing. Bruce jumps and take her by an arm.
“We’re annoying this man. Let him work.” says Bruce smiling widely.
The guy mumbles something.
“Let’s take a look inside the house and after, when he finishes, we can drink a beer.”
“Yeah, sure.” says the guy smiling briefly. Under his surprised look, Bruce almost pushes Sylvia down stairs.
When they reach the sand Sylvia asks annoyed:
“What’s wrong, Bruce?”
“That guy is weird. Instead of showing his art, he gets nervous.”
“He’s shy.”
“Or he’s hiding something.”
“I don’t think so.”
“You wanna bet?”
“Yeah!!”
“Done! I’ll make you kneel.”
“Perfect!”
“In twenty minutes he won’t be there.”
“Yeah. Let’s see…”
Smiling happy thinking of an easy win, Bruce walks fast to the house door. Sylvia follows him.
They get in the house, only to find another empty wasted dirty place.
“Sort of disappointing.” says Bruce losing his smile.
They walk around but there’s nothing to see there. The other rooms are too dark, as if they hadn’t windows or were too dirty to let light pass.
“We need a lantern.”
“Yeah.”
“Well, let’s go then.”
Sylvia gets out of the house and goes to the back.
“Where are you going?”
“You promised a beer”
“Oh!”
“And I want to win my bet”
“You’ll lose.”
“Well. Let’s see.”
They find the guy in the same place and position as before.
“You see? I win.” says Sylvia satisfied.
“Oh, yeah” The guy lifts his head and looks around.
“Oh…. you’re there…” and smiles a bit.
Sylvia sits down besides asking to see his designs.
“Oh, no…. they aren’t good…” he says nervous and blushing a bit. But smiles, shyly, and opens his hands. While she’s beholding the designs, Bruce gets impatient. He just lost a bet for the very first time, and nothing seems to be special there. He starts wandering around, trying to entertain himself.
“Well….” says the guy softly “Where are those beers?” Bruce jumps smiling like an enthusiastic child.
“Yeah! Let’s go!” and goes down stairs.

 

After some beers in Sylvia’s bungalow, everybody is friends with everybody. Now that alcohol is making Steve talkative, his cockney accent becomes notorious. But Bruce is still annoyed by the fact he lost, and finding a lantern in the bag doesn’t make him feel any better. He realises that they could investigate more if he could remember such a stupid detail. Also he’s still unsure about if Steve is really that shy or if he’s hiding something. Bruce looks through the window. It’s late at night and he’s too drunk.
“Right. I’m leaving.”
Sylvia looks at him, disappointed.
“I thought you were going to stay…”
“No, it’s too late and… you know…”
He makes a vague gesture. He clumsily takes his bag. Sylvia stands up. Bruce looks at her, frowning.
“I’m not a child, you know? I can go alone”
“Good! Hope a monster chew you minutely.”
“Right!”
Bruce nods and walks away without closing the door. Sylvia pushes the door until closing it. “Stupid.”
“Don’t say that…” says Steve softly.
“Well…” she walks and takes the last bottle “There’s only one left. Do you want?”
“Only if you want to…”
She sits down and give him the bottle to open it. As he pours the last beer, the sea wind rustles.

 

With the daylight, after a good tea and something nice to eat, Bruce sees things in a very different way. He realises he was too drunk and got annoyed for nothing. Then, he decides to finish his breakfast and goes to see her so he can offer his excuses. Bruce finds nobody at Sylvia’s bungalow. He goes to the beach. He sees Steve and Sylvia sitting in one of those tables with umbrellas that are spread all over the place. When he gets closer, he hears them talk.
“Oh, come on, let’s go to the beach!” she says standing up.
“We’re in the beach” says Steve smiling kindly.
“No, to the water”
“Ye.”
“Come on…”
Steve smiles politely and refuses her invitation.
“Why not?”
“Because I should shirtless.”
“And?”
“I’m fat.”
“No way.”
“Yes, I am.” he says polite but firm.
Bruce can’t believe it. It’s the same scene he has when they met, week ago. Sylvia makes a desperate gesture. Looks at Bruce for over some seconds.
“What are you doing, Bruce?”
“Nothing. I came to the beach.”
“And why are you standing there without a word?”
“Well. I didn’t want to intrude.”
“Are you going to the water?”
“No, thanks. I’m not feeling alright.”
Sylvia looks at them. Then she turns and walks to sea. Steve waits for a while and then stands up and reaches Bruce.
“Last night, late night… Someone tried to open the door…”
“It wasn’t me”
“I know. But someone else. Sylvia was already asleep…. But you know, when it’s locked so it makes noise when you try….”
“Yeah, I know “
“Well…. I kicked a chair on purpose and he stopped.”
“He?”
“Or she. I don’t know.”
“Oh! I see!”
“I’m locking doors and windows from now on.”
“Sylvia’s….?”
“No. I mean…. she’s intelligent, she’ll close everything if is alone…. But me….. I’m doing that.”
Steve looks directly to his eyes to know if Bruce is understanding.
“Right. Thanks. I’ll do the same.”
“Cool.”
Steve smiles and looks at the sea. Sylvia seems to have fun over there.
“Fucking heat! I’ll take a bath!”
He smiles politely, get shirtless, places his shirt carefully on the chair and goes to the sea. Sylvia walks out of the water, totally soaked, and says pointing at Steve’s long shorts:
“Why are you using those?”
“They cover my cloak” he answers blushing a bit.
“Your what?!”
“My cock, my dick!”
“Oh!”
He smiles shy, blushes a bit more and runs into the water avoiding further questions. Bruce, still under the umbrella, hits the table with a hand, frustrated.
When they get back to the umbrella, they find Bruce sitting with his head hidden between his arms, leaned on the table. Sylvia touches his back gently.
“Are you alright?”
“Not much.” he says without moving.
“Let’s go to the bungalows.”
“Thanks.” he says waving a hand “I just drank too much…”
“Oh, come… “
“Excuse me, dear!” he says lifting his head to look at her. They stare each other. Then Bruce waves a hand accepting. He slowly gets up and walks with them.
Sylvia drenches her hands in cold water and then put them on Bruce’s forehead.
“Oh! Wow! “
Bruce has his eyes closed and expression of pleasure in his face.
“You have an insolation”  says Sylvia.  “Your face is burning”
“Really? I was under the umbrella…”
But this time Bruce isn’t in the mood to discuss, he feels too good now she’s cooling his skin. Steve looks at them, kindly. Sylvia drenches her hands again and now touches his cheeks over and over until he’s almost dripping.
“I think is enough, girl”  says Steve, softly.
“But he seems to love it so much…”
“Oh, yeah!”
Just for a moment, Bruce is tempted to kiss her but Steve is there and he knows how uncomfortable and uneducated is when couples starts cuddling each other in front of everyone. “Bruce, do you sing?”  says Steve.
“Yeah! I do!”
“Sylvia commented something…”
Bruce turns to look at Steve, now he’s interested on the tall guy.  His chest, though, is full of water. Steve smiles politely.
“If you don’t have a band, maybe you wanna join…”
“Do you have a band?  What kind of band is?”
“Rock. Hard rock, heavy metal…  a bit of progressive…”  he answers looking a bit nervous. “Sounds very nice!”
“I play the guitar”  says Sylvia.
“I know”  says Steve politely but without giving a signal of being interested. Sylvia, disappointed, walks away.
“I play the guitar too”  says Bruce.
“Perfect! We have a band”
“You need a drummer”  says Sylvia sitting in a chair.
The bitterness is obvious in her face.  She feels displaced.
“I already have a drummer.  And I’m a bassist myself, so the band is formed”
“Hard rock with only one guitar? I don’t think so…”
Steve looks at her perplexed.
“What’s wrong, girl?”
Bruce jumps zestful, babbling plans to himself.  Suddenly stops and turns to Sylvia.
“Did you bring your guitar?”
“No”
“I did. It’s a classic one but it will work”
“Bring it on!”  says Steve.
Sylvia is looking away.
“I don’t understand you, girl, I thought you liked my idea…”
“I don’t know.  It’s a project of you two… I have nothing to do…”
“Don’t you wanna be in?”  asks Steve even more confused.
“I’m in?”  Sylvia looks at him surprised.
“Of course, silly. If you want to…”  Steve smiles amused  “I asked you yesterday”
“Oh!”
Her face now is shining like a midday sun.  Bruce appears holding his guitar.
“Here I am!!!  Let’s try some good stuff…  Did I say I write songs too??”
Bruce gives his guitar to Sylvia and after some discussion they decide that he’ll sing some of his own songs first and some known stuff later, with Sylvia playing along.
“For too long now, there were secrets in my mind… ”
Bruce indicates the changes of note directly on the strings as she plays. Steve smiles assenting. She’s not looking at them and doesn’t know the song, but can play a decent accompaniment.
“I throw myself into the sea…”
Steve opens his eyes impressed
“release the wave, let it wash over me…”
Sylvia sings softly along with Bruce. As the song continues, she moves her lips as if she recognised the lyrics. And when the chorus comes again she sings along. Bruce looks at her suspicious. So he starts another song, with a similar style. For a while he sings alone. Then she starts to sings with him.
“I’ll be there, catching your tears before the fall to the ground”
Bruce looks at her but she’s looking at the strings. When the song finish, Steve asks if they played together before.
“No.” says Sylvia finally looking at them again.
“How did you know my lyrics?” asks Bruce.
“I don’t know. It was obvious…”
“I’m not obvious!” says Bruce offended. Steve smiles gently, he does understand what she’s actually saying. But instead of explaining, he proposes a new song, something very well known like Deep Purple or Rainbow. They play Smoke on the water and The Temple of the King.
“Amazing!” he says unaware that his accent gets thicker when he’s enthusiast. “Very very nice!” “Thank you!”
“Now the band is formed we can practice…” starts saying Steve but Sylvia stops him.
“Did you heard something, Bruce?”
“Eh?” Bruce looks at her, puzzled.
“Last night. Did you hear a noise or something?”
“No. Why? Did you moaned too load?” Steve looks at him thinking he’s acting rude.
“Neh” Sylvia makes a gesture with a hand discarding his joke “Yesterday, late at night, I was about to sleep and I heard a noise from outside, like someone shuffling… you know when you don’t wanna make noise but you can’t avoid?”
“Yeah, I know what you mean.”
“Well. That. I got up and locked the door. And then went to sleep.”
“Oh, girl…!” says Steve notoriously relieved.
“What?”
“Nothing.” but Steve is smiling happy. They look each other in silence for over a long moment. “Give me the guitar! I’ll show you a new song!” says Bruce and the moment passes.

Bruce, sat down on the floor, is making enthusiastic plans while Steve, sitting on a chair, listens smiling kindly; he already knows when, where and how things are going to be, but he sees no need of saying it, Bruce’s ideas are nice whatsoever. Someone knocks at the door. Bruce looks at the door but resumes his speech. Then the knocks sound again but louder.
“What the…!”
Knocks are so violent now that it seems like the door it’s going to fall.
“Open the door, Madcock!!!”
Bruce curses them hitting the floor with both hands. Sylvia stands up.
“I’ll open… “
“No!”
Bruce jumps and goes to the door. He opens it violently screaming at their faces:
“What the fuck you want?!”
The bunch get in like a whirlpool.
“Look Madcock… “
“That’s Glen not me.” says Bruce trying to stay calmed “Stop calling me that way.” “Yeah, whatever…” says the reddie “Look, you have to do this”
“No, I don’t. Are you aware what time is it? This is not even my bungalow!”
“Yeah, well, you’re always where there’s a hot cunt.”
Steve looks at him frowning serious.
“I won’t sing! I’m not interested! I “
“Oh, come on! Don’t leave us this way! It’s a delicate situation… “
“Right! That’s YOUR problem!”
“Come on, Shorty! You’re our mate!”
“I’m not… Stop calling me Shorty!”
Sylvia bursts in laughs.
“Shut up, whore!”
Spite Sylvia is laughing even louder, Steve jumps furious.
“You!!”
The guy looks at him as if Steve was an alien. Steve face him, completely mad, cursing him, his fellows and everyone else related to them. The guys step back, now this is an impressive man. One thing is an angry short dude throwing sarcasms in his educated accent. And another very different is a tall tattooed guy all muscles and fury. Bruce and Sylvia look at him freaked, he looks like a lion defending his territory. By fits and starts, Steve throws the bunch to the sand outside. Then he locks the door making the door trembling.
“These doors…! I tell you…”
Steve turns around. They stare each other. Steve doesn’t understand why they’re looking at him so much.
“What?”
“Wow!” says Bruce.
“You’re scaring.” says Sylvia.
“I’m not scaring” says Steve smiling nicely.
“Eh?! Are you fucking kidding!” says Bruce.
“Well… I mean… “
“You were out of control.” says Sylvia. She isn’t looking at him in sympathy.
“Of course not!”
“You’re mad.” insists Sylvia.
“I’m not mad. I mean… it’s not at you.” and smiles sweetly. But Sylvia isn’t convinced.
“If you weren’t mad… I don’t know what going mad means” says Bruce.
“No. Well… Ah… You know… He was insulting her and… you know… I carried away… ” Steve is starting to blush.
“Oh! Was that then?”
“Well… yeah… uh… I carried away really… but yeah.”
Bruce turns to Sylvia with an amused expression in his face.
“There you have, dear, your Temple Knight to defend you and make you moan”
“Oh, shut up!” says Sylvia laughing.
Steve smiles shy, he thinks Bruce is going too far again. He sits down on his chair. “Uhm… I’m really sorry… I carried away…”
“Nah, it’s alright. They’re a pain in the ass anyway.”
Steve looks at the ground, deeply worried. Bruce decides to make a tea, but Steve nods. Then Bruce proposes coke, beer and juice. The three of them accept fruit juice, so he gives them the boxes left in the bar fridge.
“We should leave.” says Steve suddenly. The others look at him while opening their boxes. “As fast as we can.”
Steve opens his box and drinks.
“I agree.” says Sylvia “For holidays this is getting too long.”
“And so what?” says Bruce.
“I’m bored.”
Bruce smiles at her answer, a familiar attitude to him.
“It’s not that.” says Steve.
“I know. But it has no sense to stay, we should come back home and work on the band.” “True.” says Bruce and drinks thoughtful.
“Where you live?” asks Steve looking at Bruce.
“Me? Chiswick.”
They look at Sylvia.
“Redbridge.”
“Newham.”
“Right.” Bruce drinks a bit more. “Looks like we’re all orbiting London”
“Ye.” says Steve.
They drink in silence, sunken into their deepest thoughts.
But Bruce hadn’t any hurry to come back home. He wanted first to investigate better The Eagle, and spend some more time with Sylvia. And there were the guys…. if they were annoying him there, faraway from home, he didn’t want to know how worse they could get once he were back in the borough. As Sylvia said, they surely were heavily in hock with some dealers and needed money at any cost. That makes a dangerous situation for him and anyone related to him. Sylvia… they seem to feel a special antipathy against her. He had other girlfriends before, not that much as they think, but he certainly had them and bring them with him everywhere and they never showed that despise. Never went old fashioned gentlemen, but this attitude against Sylvia was completely unseen and out of order. Bruce argued then, with Sylvia and Steve, so much that he could convince them to take another day to go to The Eagle, and after that leaving the place. Steve frowned, too serious, but accepted. Bruce went to sleep feeling some kind of relief, but knowing inside the problem was only delayed not solved.

 

Next day is raining so heavy that is impossible to see through the window. Steve nods disgruntled looking through the window, he wants, he knows, they must leave the place as soon as possible. But he can only wait arms folded for things to happens. When Bruce sees the rain, he curses Zeus and every god and goddess related to weather. Later he calms down, prepares himself a tea and sits down to drink pondering how to get rid of that plague of ex-friends he has. When Sylvia sees the rain, shrugs and looks for the swords to practise. She rather likes to fly away but she’s not in a hurry neither. She can wait a day or two if that makes Bruce happy. Anyway, she loves rain, the heavier the better. So there she is, practising alone while the rain plays its music on roof and crystals.
After taking a good breakfast, Steve, Bruce and Sylvia prepared their bags. They resolved to leave everything ready, so when they get back from their investigation raid it’s only picking things up and going to the bus stop. They’re putting things together when someone knocks at the door so hard that they could tear it down. “For fuck’s sake!!” says Bruce throwing his bag, irritated. “Ignore them” says Steve while folding a shirt. But knocks get stronger and the door is trembling. “Wow! These doors, I tell you…!” “Yeah, I know, they seem made of papers.” Bruce opens the door preparing himself to another fight. As soon as he opens, the bunch try to get in. “What the…? This is NOT your house, you know?” Bruce notices a lack. “Mate, listen… ” “I’m not your mate.” “Did you see Ralph?” “Eh? No.” “Are you sure?” “Yes! I’m sure.” “We lost him.” “Really? Cool!” “This is serious!” “I’m not laughing.” says Bruce leaning himself on the door. But the thing complaints and he gets straight again. “Look, it’s been two days we can’t find him.” “Look for him in Colombia Embassy. He’s surely buying stuff…” says Bruce sarcastically. “Seriously” “Right.” “Didn’t you see him?” “No. And if I’m lucky I won’t see him again.” “Don’t say that, Bru!” “Don’t call me Bru.” “He went to buy some beers…” “Right.” “Haven’t you any idea where he can be?” “NO!” Bruce shuts the door, and everything shakes. Bruce, Steve and Sylvia look around. “Wow!” “These doors certainly wouldn’t resist the fairytale wolf…”
Steve, Bruce and Sylvia go to The Eagle following the coast. Bruce wears jean shorts and shirt, Sylvia wears a small dress with Japanese swords hanging from her waist, Steve has long shorts and a weary shirt on. When they reach the place, they look up in the nearby but nothing interesting seems to be there so they get in the house. They use a lantern to snoop into the dark rooms. Only dirt and spared broken pieces. Steve tears down a couple of doors just kicking them. One still has some empty shelves and an abandoned table. But the other one has a destroyed bookcase, a moth-eaten carpet and a little wooden door, closed, in the floor. They look each other while spotting it with their lantern. «Should we stay or should we go?»
 With sparkling eyes Bruce kneels to open the door. After a moment struggling with the lock, he manages to open it. He turns to see his mates. Sylvia has an enthusiast look, Steve smiles comprehensive. Bruce looks inside, there’s a ladder going down. “I’ll try!” he says as he starts using the stairs. After a moment, he screams “It’s safe!” One by one, his mates go down stairs. Steve looks up, hesitates, and goes up to leave the door partially closed. He doesn’t say it but he’s afraid of what people could use that place to hide stuff or sleep or do illegal things there. Steve turns on his own lantern. But the place has no mystery, it’s just an old cellar with peeled off walls, some big boxes piled and a lot of humidity. Bruce, smiling like a child imagining stories, runs to the boxes, leaves his lantern over one and starts studying them. “Maybe nazis hid guns or other things here…” says while looking for signal of date or source. “I don’t think so.” says Steve looking at the other side of the boxes pile. “Why?” “Look…” Steve spots a label on one box. Bruce and Sylvia go to see. It’s ripped and molded, but the date is still readable: 1967. Bruce looks disappointed, even in the darkness. But he quickly recovers and starts thinking again. “Maybe there’s boxes from different ages..” “Maybe.” “Or maybe it was used for other purposes…” “Maybe it is still in use.” says Sylvia. “Looks abandoned….” “Yeah, but abandoned buildings are good for illegal purposes.” “True.” Steve looks at the roof, and then at his mates. They investigate a bit more, but can’t find out anything useful. They try moving the boxes but they’re stuck in their places. Bruce is disgruntled but nothing else can be done. Steve looks up again.
“We need some instruments… something to break the boxes and look inside.” says Bruce. “Fine. We’ll bring them next time.” says Sylvia. “What do you mean?” says Bruce looking at her, despite he can’t see her. “Do you have something like that now?” “No. But in the bungalows maybe we can find something…” “Let’s go.” Bruce hesitates for a while. Then he turns and goes up stairs. When he reaches the top gets stuck. “Oh, shit!” Steve looks at him concerned, the ladder doesn’t seem to be very resistant and Bruce is shaking it too much. “Shit! Shit! Shit!” “What?” “I can’t open it!” Bruce makes a lot of noise trying to move it. “Get off!!” Sylvia commands unsheathing the wakizashi. Bruce jumps to let her pass. When she’s about to stab the wood, stops, sheaths, and gently tries the trapdoor. Then she pushes opening it completely. Bruce bursts in laughs, while Sylvia gets out. “Wanker!” spits Steve going upstairs. When his mates are outside Bruce climbs the ladder up, still laughing. When he finally gets out, he finds the others looking at him angry. “Oh, come on! It was a joke” says Bruce sat on the floor with his legs hanging through the hole. Sylvia folds her arms. “Do you see me laughing?” Bruce is overcame. “Is not funny!” says Steve clenching his fists. Bruce raises his hands. “Okay. Right… ah… I’m sorry.” “Let’s go back to the bungalows. I want to drink a tea and go away.” says Sylvia. Steve smiles politely, he doesn’t drinks tea. Bruce closes the trapdoor and walks behind them. He still thinks it was a good joke. As they make their way back, sea wind softly blows and the sun gets orange.
Sylvia tries to make a tea while Steve smiles kind but annoyed, sitting in a chair, drinking a coke. Someone near to them put the music so loud that it’s impossible even thinking. “For fuck’s sake!! Who’s the cunt playing that shit?!!” says Bruce throwing his things to the bed. “…let’s drink a tea and get out here…” says Sylvia. “Did you paid?” asks Steve. “What?” says Bruce. “The bungalows.” Steve smiles and drinks a sip. “What happens?” asks Bruce. “Pay, pay.” Steve smiles and makes a gesture but Bruce misunderstands. “Do you want money?” “No. I mean…” Steve realises he can’t hear him, so he stands up and gets closer. “Did you pay the bungalows?” says almost in his ear. “Oh!” Steve sits down again “No.” Bruce turns to Sylvia “You?” but Sylvia is focused on making a tea while ignoring the noise “SYLVIA!!!” “Eh?” Bruce slaps his knees. “This is unbearable!! I’ll talk to them!” Bruce runs through the door. Sylvia and Steve look each other and go after him.
Sylvia turns to Steve and says: “Go you and talk, Bruce will raise a fight” “Well…” “He’s angry and with his sense of humour…” “You’re right, girl.” Sylvia looks at him, expectant. “I’ll go. With Bruce you never know.” Steve, Bruce and Sylvia reach the door at the same time. Steve places himself in the middle to knock the door. “Let him talk.” says Sylvia. “Okay.” accepts Bruce raising his hands. Steve knocks politely and wait. “They won’t hear us that way” says Bruce. “What?” Bruce makes an impatient gesture. While Steve knocks stronger, he takes her by the arm and walks some steps away with her. “If he knocks that softly…” “What?” “They won’t hear us!!!!!” screams in her ear. Despite his powerful lungs she barely understands. Now Steve is really beating the door; he has a hand inside a pocket still keeping his calm, but is starting to get annoyed. “For fuck’s sake…” he says, though nobody else can hear him. Sylvia is looking at Steve, Bruce barely pays attention, he’s trying to say something still having her arm in his hand. The door finally opens. Huge tentacles grab a terrified Steve and pull him inside closing immediately after him. Sylvia and Bruce run to the door and try to open it with no success. The thing is perfectly locked. “STEVE!!!” yells Sylvia kicking the strongest she can. Bruce lashes out against the door, but it seems to be armored. Sylvia keeps pushing and kicking though the door doesn’t move at all. Bruce rushes to find something to break everything down. Sweating, with his eyes wide open, Bruce thinks desperately “I want to wake up, I want to wake up”
Since brute force didn’t work, Sylvia stops to tries something different. She leans her head while quietly tries the lock to know of what kind it is. From the other side, noises of chewing and swallowing come clearly, beneath the loud music. Sylvia loses control and starts beating, kicking and screaming at a time.
Suddenly, the door is opened and a small fat guy, half bald, looks at her.
“Yes? What is it?” says looking at her bothered.
“My friend. I want to see my friend.”
“You’re wrong. There’s nobody else but me and my mother.”
“Yes, he is!”
“You’re making a mistake. Look for him somewhere else.”
“He is here! I saw him enter.”
The more she gets furious, the lower her voice descents.
“You wanna see?” says with a cranked smile.
Sylvia gets straight, leans her hands on her swords and says, calmed and serious:
“Of course, sir. I wanna know.”
“Get in.”
The guy opens up the door to let her in. Sylvia walks into the room, knowing she’ll fight until her last drop of blood.
At her back, the lock cracks.
“Where’s Steve?” asks Sylvia with a hand ready on the katana.
“I told you. There’s nobody else here.”
Sylvia sees tiny dry pieces, old leftovers from previous meals.
When she turns around find the guy a little fatter and with some tentacles rising from his back. Sylvia unsheathes the katana and fights, but she doesn’t want to, she wants to find Steve quickly. Because this guy, this thing couldn’t eat him so fast, right? He’s hidden, imprisoned somewhere, isn’t it?
But the more she cuts its tentacles, the more they grow. And meanwhile, she’s wasting precious time. She jumps, strikes and avoids as she looks around. Only two doors close and a creature impossible to beat.
Watching everything, an old fat woman sat on a rattan chair in a corner.
Bruce looks around but the only thing he sees is a “small” Harley Davidson.
He wanted something bigger, but maybe something bigger would be impossible to drive for him. And he’s running out of time. Big or small, he steals it planning to crash it against the door.
But once he gets closer he realises that Sylvia isn’t there. Scared, he drives surrounding the bungalow looking for her. A crystal explodes and Sylvia falls and rolls over the sand and window pieces.
Bruce accelerate, take her by her arm and runs.
“Get back” says Sylvia trying not to fall. She’s only partially sat on the bike, with one hand still holding her katana.
“Shut up”
“Steve’s there. They couldn’t eat him so fast”
“Right.” Bruce gulps. The only idea of his mate been eaten upsets his guts.
Bruce stops. He faces her with an open hand.
“Give me one.” says expecting the katana.
But she sheaths the katana and offers him the wakizashi.
“What the…?!!”
Sylvia looks serious right into his eyes.
“I ave my reasons.”
“Right. Let’s go.”
Bruce drives to the bungalows again. He leaves the bike next to the broken window, so they can jump and runaway.
They get in the house through the window. Now this place seems to be empty. Maybe they’re gone? Maybe now is too late?
Two big fat creatures, all tentacles and short legs, appear behind them, cutting their escape way.
Bruce and Sylvia look each other.
«Let’s finish this fast and clean»
For the creatures still have recognisable shapes like head and body, they have a good guess about where to aim at.
But again, the chopped tentacles quickly grow again and the fight seems to have no end.
«They’re tiring us» thinks Bruce while jumping to avoid them.
Sylvia is trapped by one of the creatures. The thing opens a big mouth full of uneven sharp teeth. She stays still until being next to it, then she stabs its head as deep as she can without losing control over her sword. She retires her katana but the creature, in fury and pain, throws her violently. She falls on a table and drops on the floor like a ragdoll.
Bruce is desperate now. He doesn’t know if she’s unconscious or dead. The stabbed creature moves towards her but he can do nothing, he has his own creature to keep at bay.
The stabbed one falls apparently fainted or dying.
Bruce sees his chance. Runs putting some distance and then run directly to the moving creature, jumps over it and tries to chop its head. But his sword is too short so he can only make a deep cut. The creature gets rid of him and moves a bit towards the other one. Then attacks Bruce again. Trying to avoid it and think at the same time, Bruce slips and fall. The creature grab him by a leg. He manages to cut the tentacle falling to the ground. Then runs and stabs creature’s head from below. The creature moves pushing him away.
And then it falls.
Carefully, Bruce stands up still en garde. None of the creatures moves.
Then, he approaches Sylvia, kneels next to her and touches her neck looking for heartbeats. He finds them, so, she’s just unconscious. He stands up looking around.
Two closed doors, nothing else.
Bruce opens one door; is darkened inside and the smell of rotten things prevents him from entering. He close it firmly. He takes a breath and tries the other door.
This is a luminous and spacious kitchen. Bruce spots Steve’s foot on the floor, so runs inside. Then he finds pieces of guts and limbs stained in blood. Bruce feels nauseous needing to lean himself somewhere not to fall fainted. He crawls out of the kitchen closing the door firmly behind him. After some moments, he clears his own mind. Now he feels the urgency of getting the hell out of there.
Bruce takes Sylvia forcing her to stand and walk. Somehow she manages to move. He pushes her through the window as he passes as well. Now, she’s half awake. Bruce carries her to the bike, sits her down on it, placing himself to drive.
“Hug me. Tight.”
Sylvia doesn’t speak but obey.
Bruce starts the motorbike and drive towards their bungalows. He’ll take everything, including Steve’s bags, and run as far as they can.

After some days, Bruce tries to talk to Sylvia. But talking to Sylvia is like talking to a mushroom. She’s sitting on a chair, leaning on the table, next to the window, looking nothing.
Being a man of little patience, Bruce doesn’t stay too much with her, but comes back over and over.

When Bruce finds her yet again in the same position, he makes an impatient gesture but close his eyes and changes his ways.
He sits down smiling, in front of her and asks her how’s she today. She mumbles an inexpressive “fine” without looking at him. Bruce caress her a cheek, softly. Sylvia looks up, slightly surprised.
“I brought roses tea. You like it, don’t you?” He smiles and speaks in a dulcet voice.
«For too long now, there were secrets in my mind…»
“I’ll make a tea so we can talk, right?”
He never asks that way but now is doing it because is necessary. A tiny smile appears in her face.
«For too long now, there were things I should say…»
He sits down again in front of her pushing a cup of hot tea towards her.
They drink in silence.
“Now tell me. How are you?”
“Horrible.” replies looking at her cup.
“Well, it’s normal…”
“I killed him.”
“No, you didn’t.” he says emphatic.
“I sent him to death. I asked him to talk instead of you.”
Bruce’s smile shades.
“I thought you’d carry away and”
“I’m not an idiot.”
“I know, but you have no patience, and”
“Right! I’m not patient but…”
Suddenly, he stops. He realises his voice is getting louder. He’s thinking, he’s suspecting another thought beneath her words.
“Anyways, you didn’t know.” and drinks his tea.
“No.” drinks a sip “But if we were all together, we’d had a chance…”
“Or we would end up in their stomachs.”
“Fine. But we would have a chance. Steve hadn’t any.”
Her voice is stronger now. Bruce thinks that under the circumstances, that’s a step forward.
“Right. But would you prefer to be eaten?”
“I wouldn’t mind if you both are alright.”
Bruce drops the cup inadvertently.
“I’m alright.” says trying to take again his cup.
“But Steve isn’t.” she says looking into his eyes. Her look is darkened, deep.
“Right.”
Bruce looks at his cup and drinks.
“If I didn’t ask…”
“Stop it!!” says Bruce clashing his cup on the table. Tea drops sprinkle everywhere.
«I grabbed you by the arm, that’s how he ended alone. What guilt falls on me?»
“Stop it, dear. Please.” says in a softer, more educated tone.
Sylvia is looking down, looking nowhere again. Bruce stretches a hand and touches her face. He thinks something to say, but nothing pops up.
«I’ll be there, catching your tears before they fall to the ground…»
“We must live with it, there’s nothing left to do.”
“Yes…”
“Do you want to be my guitarist? I’m still looking for a good one.”
“Eh?”
Sylvia looks up, Bruce makes a stupid face to make her laugh. She smiles and makes a little noise.
“Now that’s better.” says smiling.
Bruce won’t never say what he saw inside the kitchen, nor show his deepest feelings about that moment when annoyed he took her by the arm and made her walk leaving Steve alone.

Sylvia eventually make her way back to normalcy. But she still cherish a collection of Steve photos. From time to time, she drinks a beer and beholds the photographs.
Bruce never wanted to put a foot in a butchery again, not even at the supermarket. And no matter how many years pass, he’s still having dreams where he enters in a sunny room to find bleeding pieces of his mate.

Ronnie

 

I had this Ronnie picture, cropped from a magazine and the lines at left were really annoying me.

Ronnie0

 

So, I decided to fix them using Resynthesizer tool from The Gimp.  Is better but is not good enough.

Ronnie1

 

So, I decided to make some work by hand.  Used blurring tool and a lot of patience.  This is the result:

Ronnie2

 

Much better, don’t you think?   Long Live Rock ‘n’ Roll!

 

Fotos de Steve (literalmente) 1

 

Estas fotos son de Steve Harris, bajista de Iron Maiden.  Son de él literalmente, las tenía en no sé en dónde y las subió a su álbum de fotos.  Así que ahí dejo sentada la autoría original de las fotos.  Los arreglos son míos, hechos con ShowFoto y con permiso de él  😉

Arry tocando en su casa, con unos veintipico, quizás treinta años
Arry tocando en su casa, con unos veintipico, quizás treinta años

 

La misma foto pero después de retocarle intensidad y contraste.
La misma foto pero después de retocarle intensidad y contraste.

 

 

Steve, ya más grande, en un día de invierno
Steve, ya más grande, en un día de invierno

 

La foto anterior pero con retoque de colores y luz
La foto anterior pero con retoque de colores y luz

 

La foto anterior, a la que le apliqué un poco de contraste local al retoque anterior
La foto anterior, a la que le apliqué un poco de contraste local al retoque anterior

 

Para lo próxima, voy a subir un par de fotos con efectos del Gimp.  Espero que les guste…

In Dio fidati

 

Dio for you

Las palabras tienen su explicación.  Hace tiempo un fan le dijo que estaba seguro que Rainbow in the dark la había escrito para él.  Dio le contestó más o menos lo que está puesto ahí.  Él decía que muchas canciones  (como la mencionada, Rock ‘n’ Roll children, Stand up and shout y otras)  las había hecho especialmente para que determinadas personas las escucharan y supieran que debían seguir adelante, no eran las únicas pasando eso;  él había pasado por lo mismo, sabía lo que se sufre y había seguido adelante.  Entonces la idea era  “No se dejen vencer”.  Me gustó mucho éso y por eso lo escribí ahí.  En cualquier caso es un borrador, espero hacer un retrato más completo más adelante.

Espero que les guste