The story of a lonesome ol'Jerome
The kids are alright
I found somewhere I didn’t have to pay to park and I was sure I wouldn't get towed, then walked several blocks to the venue. It was 4:30 am. I really had no idea what I was going to do when I got there. Some asshole yelled something at me from an alley, but I ignored it. I walked towards the theatre, and saw two kids in black go behind the building. I trotted after them, mildly embarrassed.
“Excuse me?” They turned around. A dude and a chick, they were probably in high school and man, they were dressed to the fucking nines. They looked scared like I was going to mug them, so I smiled my best ‘I am a friendly older dude’ smile, and they seemed to relax a little. “Ahoy! I’m Gwyn. I was hoping to see if I could catch autographs from BVB at some point today, though I, er, gather it’s unlikely. Do you guys, eh... know if there is a good place where I might be able to wait, you know, um, respectfully?” They looked at each other. Uh-oh, I thought, here it comes. But then they both smiled.
“Sure, they came here last year too,” said the girl. She was a lot shorter than me, and was very petite, but had the kindest eyes. “It should be cool if we sit and wait for the bus. If that doesn’t work out, hopefully they’ll come out after the show. You can follow us, if you want.” I nodded and trundled after them. We turned a corner, and I saw we were far from alone, I even saw a few kids in sleeping bags.
We sat on a curb by the theatre, chatting for a while. Their names were Dave and Shauna, they were just friends, and both in 10th grade. Once they figured out how old I was (yay), they wanted to hear all about what tattoos and piercings I had, what kind of car I drove, and what drugs I had done, and would not let up. Definitely made me feel awkward. I was just honest about it and told them that all my body modifications were removable, or out of sight, because of my line of work. As for drugs, I was straight with them about that too. Use/experimentation was one thing, but abuse and habit are another. And some things were just stupid to try at all. Besides, I had been clean as a whistle for years. Not everyone could party all the time. I had a job and had to support myself. And getting caught breaking the law would result in losing my veterinary license. They kind of crinkled their noses at that, and I changed the subject to ask them about their classes and hobbies.
Around an hour later, an enormous black bus pulled up near us. I didn’t know how that thing fit on the road or pulled into gas stations. Everyone rose instantly. Some people approached the bus, some people cheered insanely, but I hung back, silent and worried. What if we weren’t supposed to? What if BVB were trying to sleep inside? After a while, someone must have come out and indicated the appropriate place to be, as everyone was moving. I moved quietly towards the back of the crowd and just watched and waited.
Over the course of the next few hours, I saw some glimpses of the band, but only briefly. As afternoon came, it was apparent they were elsewhere, or asleep, or something, so I decided to go walk to get some food before the show.