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Old 07-30-2009, 09:49 PM   #1
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Stranger In A Strange Land: Chapter 7

Finally finished Chapter 7

~I dreamed this up. It's f-i-c-t-i-o-n-a-l~

There was plenty of time to get aquainted with 'the bus' on our way out of LA. We all sang 'Viva Las Vegas' at the top of our lungs, but that grew tiresome pretty fast. We were stuck in a traffic gridlock and being choked by the city's smog, and sleepy from the night before. I figured I must've fallen asleep, because I opened my eyes and the bus was moving fast. An unusually hot wind was blowing in the windows, and the air had dried out considerably. I wondered where we were and how long I had been asleep. Everyone else was still asleep. Larry was snoring. I had to keep that in mind, in case I ever needed to use it against him. Surely it would come in handy sooner than I thought. I gagged. My mouth felt unusually dry. I sat up and kneeled on the seat so I could see out the window. The immediate surrounding land was flat, and I could see mountains in the near distance. The ground was sandy, and little bushes that looked like tufts of hair were scattered around, amongst other bizarre looking plants. The heat stung my face a little.

I looked at Bono. He was on his back, sound asleep, with one arm resting on his stomach and the other over his head. His hair blew gently from the wind coming in through the window above. I snickered. I could wake him up nicely. But I didn't want to. He was in a very vulnerable position. Quietly, I leaned over him, took a deep breath, and blew a raspberry onto his bare armpit, like you do to a baby's tummy. He awoke with a start and sat up, lost his balance, and rolled onto the floor. I couldn't see through my tears. "Thanks, I'm glad you're amused..." he snapped. I was trying hard to calm my hysterical laughter. "I'm sorry, I couldn't resist. Come up here, look out the window." He scrambled back onto the seat and kneeled next to me. "Woooooow...where ARE we??" "Well, I don't know where exactly, but somewhere in the middle of the Mojave desert." Nate, who was driving the bus, answered for me. "We're pretty much in the middle of nowhere. Closest town is Amboy, if you can call it a town. We should be to Vegas in about two hours." Bono seemed fascinated."It's HOT!!" I snorted. "It's a DESERT!!" He laughed. "So it is. Look at those creepy, knarled tree-like things...it's actually really beautiful, in a strange way..." He looked beautiful, with the wind blowing his hair. I kissed his cheek. "It is beautiful, isn't it?"

We weren't staying on the 'Strip', as most of us were under 21. That was good for me. I couldn't imagine trying to sleep with bright neon lights shining in the window and a massive casino somewhere downstairs. In the lobby, Paul handed Bono a room key. I felt that he had been watching us over the past few days, however very discreetly. I wasn't sure what to make of it...perhaps he was trying to gauge my sincerity? That irritated me, but nonetheless, he seemed slightly less unpleasant towards me. "You two have a separate room this time." He threw a glance towards Larry, who made a childish gesture as if to be saying 'yessss'. I was thinking the same thing. He was a pain in the butt between the hours of 11 PM and 8 AM. But more importantly, I would be alone with Bono for the first time since we left his house a few mornings ago. "You hear THAT, Lilly? We won't have to listen to Larry telling us to 'bleedin shut the fook up because SOME people are trying to sleep!' or being a grump in general." Larry was making a face, and I stuck my tongue out at him. "Aww, c'mon Larry, you know we love you..." But I loved the room key Bono was holding even more. It was a key to privacy.

He flopped down on the bed. "It's soft! Not lumpy like that last one..." I crawled onto the bed next to him. "It's so nice here, isn't it?" He wrapped his arms around me and I nuzzled his hair. "Mhmmm...listen, Lilly, before we get too comfortable here, I want you to go the the lobby and call your parents." Was he serious? This again? I pushed him away a little roughly, and he looked surprised. "You want me to? Do you think you control me or something? That you can just tell me what to do and I'll do it?" He looked hurt. "No, I don't think that at all...how could you say that? I just want you to be happy-" "Really?" I interrupted him. "Then why are you pushing this so hard? Because it makes me feel very uneasy and it's starting to piss me off. Why don't you just let it go?" I was a little surprised to hear myself sounding so angry. He looked very upset. "Why? Because I haven't got a mother, Lilly." He let the sentence settle into silence, and then spoke again. "But you do. You know, Edge called his mum earlier. And she misses him. I can't call my mother. She's not sitting at home missing her little boy and waiting for me to come back. I can't call her and tell her how a gig went, or anything." It was almost too much for me to handle. I wanted him to stop talking, because it was worse than heartbreaking. "You have to talk to your parents, Lilly. You have to have a relationship with them. Because if you don't...you could end up regretting it someday. You'll regret all the things you never got to say or do. And that's a terrible feeling that I never, ever want you to feel."

I burst into tears. He seemed surprised that I was crying and pulled me into his arms. "No, baby, don't cry...I didn't want to make you cry, I promise." I sobbed into his neck. "I'm sorry Bono. I'm sorry..." He lifted my chin so I was looking at him. "Why are you saying sorry?" I tried to calm myself down. "Because, I just...it...it's not fair, baby. It's not fair, what happened to you. It's awful. And I'm sorry I didn't understand why you were so intent on me talking to my parents. I should have been more sensitive to it and realized. And you're right, as usual." He sighed. "Well, I should have-" "Stop. Bono...don't say you should have said this or should have done that. You're practically perfect as it is." He snorted. "I have more imperfections than I can count!" "That may be, but they're all a part of what make you perfect for me." He rocked me back and forth a little. I sniffed and giggled weakly. "Hey, what is it with you? I think I've cried more since we met than I have in the last ten years!" He smiled. "I think it's ten years worth of supressed emotion finally coming out. What I have to do with that, I don't know..." He was giving me his silly look. "It's because I'm not afraid to let you see it. I got angry at you, and you were only trying to take care of me. It's just that I'm used to equating being taken care of with being controlled." He sighed. "Your parents aren't perfect either, Lilly. Just like you and me and everyone else." I nodded. "I know. I hope I haven't made them sound like bad parents, because they're not." "Not at all. Now, go on downstairs and call...and when you get back, put on something nice." Something nice? "Why?" He grinned. "Because. I realized we haven't been on a real date yet." I laughed. "No, you're right. We've just been living together!" "Well, I want us to go out. Just us, and not the rest of the clan." I got up and planted a kiss on the top of his head. "Sounds good to me."

Luckily, the lobby was pretty empty. Who would want to be hanging out inside anyway? I called and spilled the whole story to my mother, from the day I had arrived in Dublin to my arrival back in America. I left out the part about being in New York for an hour, though. As I had expected, she wasn't thrilled with the life I had begun.
"So, does all this mean you're not coming home?"
"Well, mom, this is what happens when your kids grow up. They leave home and start their own lives."
"I know...but you ran off with some boy in a band! And living in another country?"
"Mom, don't direct any bad feelings towards him. If you had to pick someone for your daughter to be with, I'm sure it would be him. He's definitely special."
There was a pause.
"Are you being safe?"
"What the...of course I'm being safe. I haven't done anything."
"Are you sure?"
"How could I not be sure about something like that??"
"Well, what I meant was, are you lying?"
I was getting annoyed.
"No, I am not lying. Any more questions?"
"Where are you now?"
"In Vegas."
"VEGAS? You're not getting married, are you??"
I had to laugh.
"NO! They have a show here tomorrow night! We're traveling across the country in a bus."
She groaned.
"I can't believe you ran away with a boy in a band! Don't you know how those stories turn out?"
"You mean in movies? This is not a movie. What happens with the band isn't going to affect what happens between us. Besides, I know that they're going somewhere. And he was the one who insisted I call, and keep calling, and not disconnect myself."
"Why?"
Another pause.
"His mother died when he was 14."
"That's horrible."
I sighed.
"I know."
"So, what is he like? What does he look like?"
Oh boy. I was going to be 40 years old by the time I got off this phone.
"He's...sweet, and quirky, very imaginative, affectionate...hard to describe. He's little, kinda longish dark hair, blue eyes, lots of freckles...adorable. I'll send you a picture."
"Well, aren't we going to get to meet him? Are you coming to New York?"
I was positive we were...it was New York, for crying out loud, the biggest city in the country. I didn't know when, though, and I saw the scenerio already beginning to unfold in my mind.
"Uhhh...I think so. I'm not entirely sure of the schedule. But, I have to go now. Someone's waiting to use the phone."
"Will you call again soon?"
"Yeah. I will."
"Ok. I love you."
"Ok. Bye"
The only time I said 'I love you' to my parents was in birthday cards and such. I didn't know what was so hard about it. I told Bono that I loved him countless times a day, and it was possibly the easiest thing to say.

I went back upstairs to the room. Bono was wearing black jeans and a white button down shirt and combing his hair in the mirror. "Do I look like a waiter?" I giggled. "No, you look gorgeous. But..." I tugged his sleeve. "It's about 95 degrees out." He shrugged. "What am I supposed to do, wear the lifeguard shirt to a restaraunt?" We referred to the white sleeveless shirt with red trim that he had been wearing all day as 'the lifeguard shirt'. "Gee, it sucks being a man, huh?" I went behind him and wrapped one arm around his waist, and taking the comb out of his hand, I began combing the back of his hair. He grinned. "No, it doesn't suck at all."

Being a girl, I had the option of wearing a sleevless top, with a long white skirt that I loved more than any other article of clothing ever. I loved the way it fanned out when I twirled. Bono was smiling at me. "You look so beautiful." I loved hearing him say that. It was such a novelty to me. I hugged him tight. "Mmm, my boy. Oh my God, you...whatever you're wearing smells heavenly!" It was intoxicating. I felt like I had just downed a shot of whiskey. Not that I had ever had whiskey. I just assumed. He chuckled and got out the book of local services that hotels always have sitting somewhere in the room. "I have to find the number for a cab..." I looked out the window. The sun had just set, but it was not yet what I would call twilight. "Paulie, why don't we just walk?" Everything was within walking distance here. "But I thought you said it was 95 degrees out?" "Well, I'm sure it's hot...but the sun's gone down and it's dry, and it looks so nice out. Unless you think you'll be too hot in this getup..." He shook his head. "No, we'll walk. As long as you didn't suggest it because you don't want me to pay for a cab!" He gave me a sly look and I laughed. "No, I'd really rather walk. It's lovely here at night." He raised his eyebrow. "How do you know?" "Because I've been here before." He looked surprised. "Really? You've been here?" I nodded. "Yup. On vacation. We went to the Grand Canyon too, and drove through the desert...it was great." He had a thoughtful look on his face. "Sounds it."

Adam and Edge were coming in the door downstairs as we were going out. When they saw us, Adam whistled. "Oooo, where are you guys going?" "Out," Bono said. "To dinner." "Oh, like on a date?" Adam cracked me up. "What were you guys doing, anyway?" I asked. Edge piped up. "We went to get some pop." Pop? What the hell was pop? I looked in the bag he was carrying. There was a two liter bottle of Coke. "You mean SODA?!" "Oh, yeah...the guy at the store called it pop though." Bono looked around. "Where's Larry?" "Oh, he's upstairs taking a nap. He said he couldn't sleep last night because you two kept whispering," Adam said, laughing. "I told him I didn't hear it...I was too busy being asleep!" "Yeah? I'm surprised any of us could sleep through HIS snoring!" Bono shook his head. "Well, he can sleep all he wants tonight. See ya later." And he took my hand and led me out the door.

I had never experienced nicer weather than in the desert at night. "I'm glad we walked, Lilly. You were right about it being nice out." I sighed. "This is the most beautiful place I've ever seen." He made an indignant sound. "What?! You said the same thing about Dublin!!" I laughed and nuzzled him. "Aww, baby, don't get all huffy. I love Dublin, really. It's a wonderful city. And I consider it home. Here is beautiful in a different way." He was scowling playfully. "You mean in the flashing neon lights kind of way?" I rolled my eyes. "No, you dope. The desert!" I threw my hands in the air. "It's magical." He smiled. "I was just playing with you, love. It is intriguing..." He trailed off, seemingly in thought. Then he grinned at me. "So, are you gonna hang out backstage tomorrow night?" I shook my head. "Psh, nahh. I want to experience the show. Just because we're together, doesn't mean I can't be a fan anymore!" He squeezed my hand. "Why do you always say I'm crazy? You're no better!" I giggled. "But you are your very own kind of crazy, Bono." He stopped walking and wrapped his arms around me. "But you love me for it, right? Even when I'm all in your face, being annoying?" I laughed. "Yes. I like having you in my face." "Oh?" He pressed my body against his and kissed me firmly. It was a good thing that he was holding me so tight. Otherwise, I would have collapsed right onto the sidewalk.
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Old 07-30-2009, 11:04 PM   #2
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Old 07-31-2009, 02:23 AM   #3
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beautiful chapter - im really enjoying this!
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Old 07-31-2009, 03:30 AM   #4
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I've just realized something............in this story Bono is 19 years younger than I am.....

I really like how you've got all their character traits right on in this.
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Old 08-02-2009, 08:05 PM   #5
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Old 08-05-2009, 06:45 PM   #6
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that is a [COLOR="Magenta"]sweet story.[/COLOR]
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Old 08-12-2009, 06:33 PM   #7
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great chapter
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Old 01-08-2011, 11:40 PM   #8
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