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Holiday Fantasy Drama

“Is Leslie in there?”

“No, she said she’s running late.”

“Not surprise.”

“You want to go in now?”

“Not really. There’s plenty of cars here.”

“Yeah, but how many are here for our party?” Alonzo questions.

“True. I don’t understand why they decided to use a hotel. Club would’ve been better.”

“Yeah, but that was Mr. Rose decision.”

“You called it our party.”

“What’s that?”

Tony looks at Alonzo in the passenger’s seat and repeats, “Seconds ago you said it’s our party.”

“It is, right?”

Tony looks down and smirks.

“Mr. Rose has invited every band on his record label and you calling it ‘our party.’”

“You know what I meant.”

“When was the last time he gave us our own party? And I say we deserve it. We sold the most records than all the other bands on his label.”

“Now you know that’s not true. You forgot about ‘The Mavericks’?

“What about them?”

“Their last album sold triple platinum.”

“It did?”

“Yeah.”

“I can’t keep up with all of’em. I keep my mind where it belongs, our songs.”

“So, we going inside?” Alonzo asks.

“Not yet. Look I know it’s a night to have fun, holiday season and as you know around this time I get bitter.”

“I know.”

“He would have been sixty-six this time of year.” Tony says.

“A young looking sixty-six.”

“You got that right, brother.” Tony pulls out a small photo of his father from inside his suit. He looks at the photo. “He taught me everything I know about the drums and how to handle my self as a black man in America.”

“I’m happy to have known him.”

“Did I ever tell you he met Miles Davis and Little Richard?”

“Yeah, and I remember when your dad told us first. I couldn’t believe it.”

Tony kisses his dad’s photo and puts it back in his suit pocket.

“Alright c’mon.” Tony says and steps out of the car.

Alonzo follows. Together they walk to the front sliding doors to the hotel.

“How I look?” Tony asked.

“Who you trying to impress?”

“We haven’t met everyone on the label, you never know.”

They both laugh walking in.

“There she is.”

“Always ready to make an entrance.”

The band- Tony (drums), Alonzo (electric guitar) and Nicolette (bass player) stand together against the wall watching the floor, drinking their soda, as the DJ mixes hit after hit from the artist on the record label. They watch Leslie (lead singer) from their band greet several people as she makes her way over to them.

“They didn’t save us a table?” Leslie chuckles.

“You look great, girl.” Nicolette smiles.

“Thank you.”

“You want something to drink?” Nicolette asks.

“Yeah, what they got?”

“C’mon, let’s see. That waiter looks kinda cute, too.”

“You desperate?”

“Shut up and c’mon. We’ll be back gentleman.” Nicolette says.

The women walk off together.

“You seen the boss around?” Tony asks.

“No, not yet.” Alonzo answers.

There’s a nice crowd. Some are dancing others sitting at their tables eating and drinking enjoying fun conversations. Everyone is dress elegant and laid back. There’s a large fake Christmas tree on the medium size stage with the male DJ. The room is brightly lit with Christmas lights and ornaments nicely decorated around the room.

“Is he from TV?” Alonzo points at the DJ.

“Yeah, he’s from that reality show. Forgot its name.”

“I see Maggie, over there.”

“Yeah, and?”

“I’m just saying.”

“You know she mad at me.” Tony says turning so she doesn’t see him and drinks.

“She needs to get over it. You apologized on social media.”

“Yup. And then she insults me saying I’m a has been, that I lost my touch as a drummer.”

“You know it’s not true.”

“It’s not?” He finishes his drink.

“Maggie is just jealous. Move on.”

“I have. Listen, I’m going to the bathroom.”

“Got’cha’.” Alonzo says and shakes his head.

Tony puts his empty glass on one of the nearby tables and hurries towards the bathroom.

Alonzo walks over to the dessert table. As he grabs a slice of cheesecake Maggie stands by him and reaches for a slice of cherry pie. She smiles at him.  

“I love the last album you and the band released last year.” She says, smiling.

“What do you want Maggie?”

“I’m just saying, the album is great, especially your guitar solo on the third track. Amazing.”

“Alright. Enjoy your pie.” He begins to walk away.

“Hey,” she grabs his arm. “I thought maybe we can leave together tonight. This party is boring me.”

Alonzo frowns, pulls his arm away.

“After what you said about Tony. I don’t think so.” He walks away with his cheesecake.

Tony steps out of the bathroom stall after flushing the toilet. He stands in front of the mirror and washes his hands. He dries his hands and walks out of the bathroom. He stands in the hallway and forgot which way is back to the party room. He chooses to go right. He looks at some double doors on the right side of the hallway and believes he has found the correct room. He opens the doors and to his surprise there’s no music. He walks in the dim lit; smoke filled room. The smell of nicotine and hard liquor is in the air. Everyone is dressed in dark subdued colors. The doors close behind him. He notices it’s the wrong room. He turns half way and is about to walk out, when suddenly an average height dark skin man with dark shades on walks up to him. He holds a gold trumpet in his thin hands; dress sharp. He looks up at Tony and says in a raspy voice, “You look like someone I know.”

Tony looks at him, he can’t believe his eyes. It’s impossible. He thought to himself.

“Sorry, but aren’t you…”

“You a musician?” the trumpet player asks.

“Y-yes.”

“You got a speech impediment?”

“No.”

“What you play?”

“I’m a drummer.”

“Really? Play then.”

“Where?”

“Up there.” He points to a stage on the far side of the room. A spotlight illuminates a shiny drum set. Tony looks startled.

“You said you play, right?”

“Yes.”

“Go on then.”

Tony walks towards the stage. The people standing around in the shadows, holds their drinks and some have cigarettes in their hands, watches Tony. He looks at each of their faces and notices them: Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Prince, Luther Vandross, Louis Armstrong, Chet Baker, Clarence Clemons, Little Richard and Roy Orbison. All of them look elegant, fresh, glowing with such strength and dignity. None of them know Tony so they look with suspicion.

Tony steps on stage and sees the drum sticks laying on the round seat at the drum set. His shaking hands grabs them. He feels nauseous. He turns his back to the crowd, steps out of the spotlight. He stands still. Prays that the awful feeling and dizziness goes away. Seems like eternity but it all eventually goes away. He hears sighs and restless feet shuffling. He faces the drum set and walks back into the spotlight. He sits at the drum set. He looks out at the shadowy faces.

My goodness, what should I play? He thought to himself. This is surreal. I need to stop over thinking all of this…

“Just play!” Little Richard shouts.

Some of them chuckle.

Next thing Tony knows he plays the drums like he never has before! The sounds, the energy he gives off, it’s electric and enthralling. Everyone in the room is astonished. Tony ends the session. His brow is sweaty. He was in a deep trance, it felt incredible.

The room erupts in applause. Tony stands, puts the drum sticks back on the seat and walks off the stage.

Whitney Houston walks up to him and kisses him on the cheek and smiles, “Wonderful, baby. I got chills.”

The applause continues and then slowly stops and everyone goes back to chattering amongst each other.

He reaches the double doors where the trumpet player remains standing.

“You Richard’s son,” says the trumpet player.

“I am,” Tony smiles.

“I knew you look familiar.”

“I’ll tell him what you did tonight.”

“Thanks. And tell him I miss him.”

“He knows,” the trumpet player grins, “but I’ll tell him.” He walks away.

Everyone conversing. Tony knew it was time to leave. He opens the door and steps back into the bathroom. He looks perplex. He stands again in front of the mirror and looks at himself. He splashes water on his face. He hears the DJ playing from the party. He shakes his head in wonder and walks out of the bathroom. Alonzo suddenly walks up to him.

“There you are, what’s taking you so long? You okay?”

“Come with me.”

“What?”

“Be quiet and follow me.”

Tony grabs Alonzo’s arm and pulls him down the hallway.

“What is wrong with you, the party is the other way.”

They stop in front of the same double doors Tony came to before.

“Open them.”

“What?”

“Open them.” Tony says.

“What is this some trick?”

“Alonzo, do it.”

Alonzo turns the knob and swings the door open. They look inside. The whole room is empty. There’s just a male janitor sweeping the floor. He looks at them.

“Can I help you?”

Alonzo looks at Tony.

“No, um…sorry…” Tony says.

“Alright, happy holidays,” the janitor says.

Tony closes the door.

“You okay?” Alonzo ask.

“Yeah, let’s go.”

Tony and Alonzo walk down the hallway back to the party room.

“I tell you Tony, sometimes you freak me out.”

“You and me both.”

December 24, 2020 19:45

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2 comments

Zahra Daya
04:30 Jan 01, 2021

Hey Keith! I loved the take you took on this prompt! I found myself nervous for Tony when he was about to play and shocked at the end twist! I think if you tweaked the grammar as there are quite a few commas missing, it would be perfect! Also, if you wouldn't mind, I would love some feedback on my pieces! Overall, great job!

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Keith B.
22:57 Jan 01, 2021

Thank you for your thoughts Zahra. Looking forward to reading your work.

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