The Howling Wind - Chapter 19 (4/4/09) - U2 Feedback

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Old 04-04-2009, 10:37 AM   #1
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The Howling Wind - Chapter 19 (4/4/09)

Okay, so technically it's the 5th here, but it's only 1.30am and once you factor in the end of daylight savings, it's an hour earlier, so bleh.

I freely admit this chapter is too short, but I can't be arsed rearranging things now, so I'll just have to post the next/last one tomorrow, and probably the epilogue the day after that.

Disclaimer: Not much more of the torrent of falsehoods left now!


--------

25 June, 1990 - Bloedel, BC, Canada

The day before, Aislinn, Michael and the girls had come back. Edge and Aislinn had spent a long time talking in a room together, but afterwards they both seemed more at ease.

Edge was greatly relieved that Aislinn didn't seem to be so afraid of him any more. She had believed he was dead, until Adam had contacted her. Edge had given her back his wedding band; they couldn't legally divorce until the laws in Ireland changed, but it was clear that their marriage was over.

Michael seemed a decent man. He looked nervous under Edge's close scrutiny, and more so when Edge had rather obviously sniffed him. But Edge was satisfied with whatever he saw or smelled, and all he said to Michael was, "Don't ever hurt her." Michael had become affronted, lost his nervousness, and replied indignantly that he never would. Edge was content with that.


Today, Edge's parents were becoming properly acquainted with Elaine, while the former members of U2 and one guitar tech took over her basement.

Dallas had pulled the Explorer from the guitar case, and Edge looked on while he connected it up to a small amplifier they'd brought with them.

"You all right?" Adam asked quietly beside him. "Bono was so keen to bring a guitar along and jog your memory some more..."

Edge made a face. "What I remember of that last leg of the tour isn't very pleasant," he said.

"Fair point, although I don't think that's what he wanted to remind you of." Adam privately thought that this little exercise was more for Bono's benefit than Edge's - the singer wanted to bring Edge all the way back, back the way he was before. Adam didn't think that was entirely possible, and he didn't think it was fair for Bono to have set all this up, barely a week after Edge had wandered out of the wilderness.

But he said nothing more, watching as Dallas held the guitar out to Edge.


It was strange, but familiar at the same time, like most of the last week. Edge had grown unaccustomed to the weight of the guitar, but his muscles remembered it.

Everyone was staring at him in an expectant hush.

"It won't sound quite right, without the effects," Dallas said.

"We got by without the effects, once upon a time," Edge replied.

He turned around, unable to face the stares, but he could still feel the eyes on his back. Pick hovering over the strings, uncertain, a dozen songs rose up from his memory. His left hand moved almost of its own accord, and he struck a few notes. The muscle-memory was there, mostly – he missed a couple, went back, tried again. It was coming back; in his head, he heard the tambourine and hi-hat tapping, and the refrain grew more sure. It wasn't the right guitar for it, but...

"I have climbed, highest mountains," Bono sang softly. "I have run, through the fields..."

Edge heard Larry's foot tapping, and turned around again, still playing. Larry and Adam were smiling, right-side up and up-side down, and Bono was positively beaming. Dallas turned away and pretended to fiddle with a cable, but Edge heard a sniff.

He'd missed this, he realised. He missed music. He missed playing, as tedious and boring as it had become in the course of that tour. And he suddenly wished the others had brought their instruments too, or that they were back home, in the studio.

Edge let the notes die away as Bono sang the chorus. "But I still, haven't found... what I'm looking for...?" He looked at Edge curiously.

"I'm looking for a balance," Edge said after a moment. "A way to have both worlds. I can't be a wolf all the time, any more than I can be human all the time. And I don't want to. This is who I am, too." He gestured at the guitar and amp, then looked at the others. "This is my pack, as much as the other one. Probably more." It had occurred to Edge that humans were capable of being more accepting of his... differences, than most wolves were likely to be.

"'Probably'?" Bono said, eyebrows raised.

"Depends on how much of an arse you're being," Edge said, then smiled.

---

"What made you come back, finally? After all this time?" Bono asked, some time later. Edge had stumbled through a few more songs, as much to put the others' minds at ease as his own, and Larry had joked that Paul McGuinness had started booking U2's triumphant come-back reunion tour the moment he'd heard that Edge was still alive. At least, Edge assumed Larry had been joking.

Briefly, Edge recounted the series of events that had brought him into contact with Mrs Wilson.

"That was it? Just a smell?" Larry sounded dubious.

"That probably wasn't the only thing, but it was the first thing I was really conscious of. It was what finally drew me away from the wolves... I couldn't hide from my humanity forever, just like I couldn't hide from..."

"Your lupinity?" Adam offered.

"Something like that," Edge gave a small smile.

"What's appealing about humanity?" Bono asked. "Family aside... but maybe that's all it was?"

"That's part of it. It wasn't a matter of humanity appealing, so much, as just the fact that part of me IS human. The humanity is there, whether I like it or not. And humans may hate and fight and hurt more than wolves, but they also love more."

Bono was nodding to himself.

"So, I'm a bit behind on the news... Has anything big happened while I was gone?"

The others assumed thoughtful expressions.

"Well, the Berlin Wall came down," Adam said.

"The Iron Curtain has fallen," Bono added. "The USSR is comin' apart."

"What?"

"Apartheid's bein' dismantled," Bono went on, clearly enjoying Edge's reaction. "Mandela walked free a few months ago."

"What?!"

"Have you not seen the news since you came back?" Larry asked.

"Mrs Wilson doesn't have a television," Edge said faintly.

"Oh, the Iran-Iraq war ended," Bono said. "But there's always somethin' going on over there."

"So did the Soviet-Afghanistan war..."

"Ireland's playin' Romania tonight in the World Cup knockouts," Larry said.

"Everyone's paranoid about Mad Cow disease..." Adam mused.

"There's a giant space telescope been launched into orbit..."

"The Guildford Four were released."

"Riots and revolutions all over the place..."

"Tiananmen Square..."

"Big oil spill last year..."

"And Khomeini died..."

"Bush and Gorbachev are destroying their chemical weapons..."

"Enough!" Edge was developing a headache. "Maybe I'll just read a newspaper instead."



--------
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Old 04-04-2009, 05:14 PM   #2
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Old 04-04-2009, 11:41 PM   #3
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I love it when they told him what was happening in the world...and when he sniffed Michael. Those made me giggle.

It's ending...
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Old 04-05-2009, 01:48 PM   #4
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Larry and Adam were smiling, right-side up and up-side down,




Great chappy, albeit short. The news updates are great!

Only one more???
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And if U2 EVER did Hawkmoon live....and the version from the Lovetown Tour, my uterus would leave my body and fling itself at Bono - for realz.
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Old 04-06-2009, 12:54 AM   #5
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Aww... all too short, in my opinion.

I can't believe this story is almost over! You're such a great writer!
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Old 04-08-2009, 10:00 PM   #6
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i love it.
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