Fan fiction for you
The world is growing smaller now, my heart could just go bang. Many years ago, one random day, I walk into a bookstore and across the table from me are the band members of China Crisis. And Curt Smith and Rob Thomas answer Tweets.
I’m trying not to be ungrateful. I mean, wow, right? Even if they’re not you. And I’m thinking, maybe in a decade or two. I’m very patient. And at the moment very broke. I can’t afford a front seat in your concert, can’t afford to fly to London and stalk you.
By then I’d have given up the dream of academe. I’d be an unlicensed caregiver, my diploma provided by some old paper mill. And somehow we’d be in the same country. In any case your eyesight would have gone, a few years short of being an octogenarian, so you would not be able to see the fine print.
That would serve me just fine. You might not be able to figure my brown skin, or the wrinkles creeping up my own face. Maybe you’ll peer into my eyes and suddenly know that the truth of my whole life was revealed to me song by song all through the many albums of your rockstar life. I shall read to you each night from all the magazine clippings I have amassed, and you’ll go to sleep with the sweetest recollections of your glory days. Perhaps I shall even annoy you by quoting a line or two from any of your songs, given an opportune moment.
Sometimes you’ll ask for your guitar and sing to me, in a broken voice, but still in perfect tune so that it would be some kind of tragic-acoustic rock. You’d be glad you have an audience of one, and I’ll be glad I’m not elbow-to-elbow with any other fan. Maybe you’d even compose one song, just for me, something that places a period to all the songs you’ve sung before. You’d even make it your swan song, holding my hand as you slide into the night. And I’d have to sing the last line for you, and mine will be the last human voice you’ll ever hear, choking on tears.
Sure, sometime in there I’ll have to feed you and wipe your dribble, I shall be washing your bum and changing your diapers, but that’s real proof of love, isn’t it?
Is that way too dreary? We can always go for Romance with a capital R: Perhaps I’d be a painter touring the world, and because you love art, we’ll meet at a gallery. I’m standing by my penultimate painting—an abstract swirl of the wind in some fairy tale kingdom of mountains and seas and skies—and you wander into the room. I won’t even know it’s you until you start to speak and tell me what you see.
“The wind is so inviting, it’s like I’m swept away to those mountains or those skies, and-and-”
“Watch the world pass us by,” I continue, and turn, surprised I’ve quoted your own line at you.
But you’re laughing, and we start bantering, like there’s a sudden circle around us no one else dare cross. You’ve got sparkling wit, and I’ve got dazzling laughter. We work up such a charge that magic suddenly exists, and we tell each other our names. It becomes a rather powerful spell.
When we touch to shake hands, the wind takes us spinning into the painting, into a landscape so familiar to you because every dab of paint is a word from your songs. You don’t know this, that I’m the very air you breathe, when you find yourself alone, a wanderer who pines for the top of each mountain, only to long for the next valley once you get up there and see the world below. Your heart aches for companionship, and finally you know how I’ve felt all this time I haven’t met you.
But I guess that stinks too much of revenge, even if it’s the sweet revenge of love. So maybe we’re finally in the Future (skipping over the lives and centuries of searching for the other), and we are a match of equals, Eye to Eye, Soul to Soul. We’re on separate planets, galaxies apart, but there’s a MultiVac named Plato VII-II-III that seeks out the threads connecting the worlds’ creatures together, and through the Eons, has paired off everyone but us. At the very end of time and edge of extinction, it has found us and tugs at our heartstrings to draw us ever closer.
One day, you get on your Falcon, and I beam up to the Telephone Box in Outer Space, and inexplicably, the buttons we push don’t respond, and we go hurtling through space at warp speed, wormhole after wormhole. There’s a humming in the spheres that’s tuned us to your every song. It takes a while for my ears to pop and settle, but after that I realize that every whisper I ever heard through all my lives was every note you ever sung. And as the stars spin by I’m getting more and more of an image on my Real-time Holocron, and I feel a sudden electric jolt of Recognition when I finally look you in the face. You see me too, at the very same moment, on your Viewscreen. And you break into a smile, and I reach out to touch your face, and our vessels crash into each other.
It will be the last Super Nova the Multiverse shall ever witness, causing a Black Hole to end all Black Holes, and after the sacred sound of our meeting will be a final Silence.
Since there will never be another Lifetime, this is it.
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