Beach Sequence - An auditory fanfic experience :) - U2 Feedback

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Old 06-10-2007, 01:31 AM   #1
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Beach Sequence - An auditory fanfic experience :)

Beach Sequence is one of my favourite tracks on Passengers, and I often listen to it while laying in bed, seeking sleep. When I do, I always let the music carry me to the same place: A hammock by the beach.
So I thought, why not expand on that idea a bit, and turn it into an auditory fanfic? To start with hearing that beautiful music as you relax, and to end beyond the song, with a Bono encounter.

So that's what this is. And it's in second person, and I really don't know why I tend to write fanfics in second person, because I would never be able to write any other kind of story that way, but go figure.
Many things are left purposely vague, so as to let the reader's imagination take over. Also, the Bono in my story is sort of a "regular guy" Bono, who's not necessarily in any sort of a real band, if that makes any sense

So go on, put on the song and read away:


It's a balmy summer evening, and you're lying relaxed on a hammock, inside the screened-in porch of your beach house. Outside you can hear the steady churn of the waves, the sounds of birds, and somewhere down on the beach, a band playing soft music. It's quite relaxing and as you sway on your hammock, you find yourself getting closer and closer to drifting off.

But suddenly you hear the sound of a piano. Just a few crisp notes at first. It startles you, because you've been listening to this band play the same sort of music for an hour or more, but this is the first you've heard a piano join in. But it's not only that. The piano is closer, and coming from a different direction. But somehow, although it's coming from an entirely different place, it fits with the rest perfectly.

The piano pauses for a few moments, and you frown, wondering if it's over. But then it starts up again, and is joined by a male voice singing four words: "Time... shoots on by." You sit up then and almost fall out of your hammock. The piano continues without another word, but now you're curious. Just where is this music coming from, and who is the man that's playing it?

You get up off of the hammock with only minor difficulty and walk over to the screen door. The world outside is dimly lit by beachtorches. The ocean is black. The sky above is full of heavy clouds. Far to your left, you can make out the dim shapes of the band. But the piano music is still playing, and it's certainly coming from your right.

You step out onto the deck and listen. The scenery, albeit dark, makes the music that much more beautiful. Suddenly you need to know where the music is coming from. The steps leading down to the sand are on your right, so you go that way, but you've no sooner gotten down to the bottom step, than the heavens open up with soft rain.

You ought to turn around now, and get back inside before you get soaked, but you throw caution to the wind and move forward across the dampening sand. The rain gets progressively heavier, and behind you the music makes an abrupt stop. You turn to look, and see the shadowy figures of the band packing up their instruments. The piano music presses on.

The house next door to you is dark and empty, but the screened-in porch of the next one is brightly lit, and within it, you can see a solitary figure sitting at an upright piano. This is the source of the mysterious music.

Without thinking about any of the possible consequences of your actions, you climb up onto the deck, and stand just outside the screendoor and watch him play, oblivious to the rain beating down on your head. Minutes pass, and then as he moves his right hand farther down the keys to the higher notes, his hand slips and he hits a bum note. You smile slightly, while he shakes his head, in annoyance with himself.

But as he turns his head to do this, he catches you out of the corner of his eye and turns around to face you, jerking his hands away from the keys and ending the music abruptly. You jump and back up a step, gasping and covering your mouth in your own embarrassment for being caught doing what is essentially spying. You should run. Flee back into the rain and to your own home. But instead you just stand there like a soggy muppet.

Finally, after what seems like ages, but what is probably only seconds, he gets up from the piano bench and comes over to the door. As soon as he opens it, you find your voice and begin babbling on. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to intrude, I live two houses down, and I heard the music, and I wanted to know where it was coming from, but then it started raining..."

You might continue on for hours, but he holds his hands up in a gentle halting motion and you trail off. "It's okay." He says, and then backs up, holding the door open. "Come inside, you're soaking."

You step inside and awkwardly drip on his welcome mat, while he wordlessly disappears into the hall. He's back in a few moments with a very fluffy white towel which he hands to you to dry off with.

You thank him and introduce yourself while you begin to dry off your hair. He nods, tells you his name, and sits on a blue-cushioned chair. While you dry yourself, it occurs to you that you're just going to get soaked again as soon as you leave. You turn slightly on your heels with that thought and look back out into the rain. "It's really coming down out there." You say, turning back toward him. "Maybe I should hang out here until it lets up some."

He leans over, looking past you to the darkened beach for a moment. "It could rain all night." He says, smiling. This catches you off guard, and you stare at him a moment, wondering if perhaps he's flirting with you, but then he continues. "Of course, if it goes on too long, I can let you borrow an umbrella." You thank him again, and go over to sit on the end of the couch. As soon as you do, you realize that your bare feet are filthy where the damp sand has stuck to them. You nonchalantly drop the towel atop your dirty feet to hide them, hoping he doesn't notice.

That done, you take a moment to look around, and appreciate the fact that although most of the houses along the beach are nearly identical, his screened-in porch is furnished and decorated far better than yours. Yours only contains a hammock, a bookshelf, a small table, two chairs, and a small television set. His has matching rattan couch and chairs, both bearing soft blue cushions. There's no TV, but instead a large shelf overflowing with much more interesting books than your own contains. The piano along one wall, with an interesting surrealist art print framed above it finishes the look. You imagine he must spend a lot of time here. Most of the time spent in your dissimilar room is spent napping on the hammock or watching soap operas. The soaps are your one guilty pleasure, but somehow watching them on the small TV with bad reception makes the pleasure just a little less guilty. You're just getting into pondering this thought when his voice jerks you away.

"Where did you go off to?"

"Excuse me?" You ask, confused.

"You seemed far away there for a moment. What were you thinking about?"

You blush and lower your eyes. "Soap operas." You say, with a touch of laughter at yourself.

"Ah, a big fan?"

"A big 'fan' indeed. It sucked me right in!"

You both share a laugh at your play on words, before you change the subject. "Have you been playing long? The piano, I mean."

"Not too terribly long. The guitar is more my shtick, although I'm afraid I may be just as bad at it." He says, but he's smiling. "But tell me, what was so intriguing about my playing that made you want to rush over here in the rain?"

"It fit." You say, and he raises his eyebrows, utterly confused. "I mean, I heard the other guys down the beach." You wave your arm vaguely in that direction. "I'd been listening to them for a while, but then you came out of nowhere, completely from the opposite direction, but you were playing with them. Your music fit perfectly with theirs. Do you know them, or did you just know the song?"

"Both. I've played with them before, and I've played that song before. Usually I bring my guitar down, but when we want piano, they come right out here, and I just roll the piano onto the deck. It's not easy to push a piano across the sand."

You laugh. "No, I don't imagine so."

"I didn't join them tonight, although the music managed to catch a hold of me regardless, as you well know, or else you wouldn't be here."

"Good for me that it did, then. It's been a pleasure to meet you." You say with a smile.

Outside the fine mesh screens, the rain continues, and inside, the conversation ebbs and flows like the ocean itself. It makes an easy journey from music to art, from art to literature, and from literature to philosophy. After some time, the conversation comes to a lull, and it is not until then that either of you realize that the rain has stopped.

You turn your head and look out into the black sky. "The rain has stopped." You remark.

"It has." He nods.

You stand, picking the towel up off of your feet and folding it as you do. "I'll get out of your hair now. Thanks for..." You trail off, struggling to figure out exactly what you're going to say. "Thanks for being so nice about the whole intrusion thing, I guess."

He takes the towel from you. "Next time, just knock instead of waiting for me to notice you. It's a bit startling, otherwise."

"Will do." You say, smiling and making your way back to the door.

"I'll see you around."

You nod and smile and say goodbye, then duck back out into the now cooled air. Down the steps you go, and back across the sand. You're not even to the next house yet, when you hear that piano start back up again. You pause in your steps and listen. It really is beautiful music, and somehow now, it feels like he's playing it just for you.


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Old 06-10-2007, 03:09 AM   #2
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that was really cool !!!!!!!!!
when i get some peace and quiet i will actually read it again with the music.

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Old 06-10-2007, 04:30 AM   #3
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wow.. I love the song..but this..I really like how you captured this..
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Old 06-10-2007, 09:37 AM   #4
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Perfect! Perfect scene; beach, relaxing, piano music wafting across to your eardrums... rainstorm...dark skies, sandy foot prints. It all fits perfectly. I live near a beach (only a coupla miles away tho I never go.. (hubby doesn't like it - too many ppl, too hot, too comercial) pfft.. Mind you I kinda agree with him on some of it. ) and so for me I can see this so vividly in my minds eye. ( well, I would even if I didn't live near the beach but that fact just makes it all the more real, if that makes any sense). I like the way you've captured two ppl who don't know each other and yet share something. Is it the love of the piano? It's like you've begun with two separate worlds with only one person in them until they overlap...does this make any sense? I think I should go...
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