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Old 02-26-2011, 06:30 PM   #1
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Out Of Control 19

Augh, that was so much to write...as usual, I didn't say everything I meant to, and wrote other things I didn't realize would happen.

'78 next, I think, although dammit, whatever I write 2 chapters of in a row gets addicting to write.

'Perfect Strangers' is by Deep Purple. It's the perfect song lyrically for, well, this...

And 'Invisible Fire' and 'Leaving' (which is only mentioned, though I have the lyrics) I made up. I'm on a lyrics-making roll...


1986 (continued)

Around when Bono straight off started drinking, Ciarán stood in the doorway of the Blue Café, looking lost. He hung away from the rest of the band, a slightly dejected look on his face; it wasn’t something he’d admit easily, but he missed Ali. Ali basically was his mom.

He walked into the bar and tapped his father on the shoulder. “Hmm?” Bono asked, but was a little confused and didn’t see Ciarán, who sighed and stood where he was, and then went and sat at one of the tables near the wall, hugging his knees. He was tired. He nearly drifted off to sleep—but he was too awake in general; he was trying to see what all four bandmembers were up to at once.

He must have dozed off briefly, because someone was shaking his shoulders briefly. He looked up, briefly disoriented.

“Hi,” he said in a small voice. A woman with long red hair looked down, concerned, at him. He looked over again and tried to see if he could see his dad. Nope.

“Whose kid are you?” she asked, with that concerned look still. “People should know better than to abandon their kids in bars. It’s not right.”

“Oh, I’m fine,” Ciarán said brightly. He stuck out his hand, grinning. “I’m Ciarán. M’dad’s prob’ly making music soon.” He yawned. “I think.”

She shook his hand, amused; he had to stand up on his seat to be able to reach her.

“Listen, Ciarán, you should probably find your dad. While it’s not the worst, this isn’t the best place to be after dark on your own.”

Still standing on the seat, he craned his head up to try and see over her shoulder, and saw only backs turned or unfamiliar faces. “I dunno where he is,” he said.

She sighed. “Wait here.” Then she realized that was what he had been doing, and what she’d said not to do, and sighed again. “Never mind, come with me. You said he was performing? He might be backstage.”

He followed her backstage. None of U2 was there—well, there was Adam; Ciarán said hi, looking dumbfounded at the, to him, huge bass guitar. Edge had let him mess around with his guitar once and that had been confusing enough; bass was a totally foreign impossible language to Ciarán, who’d mainly learned to drum, through following Larry all the time.

Adam waved at her, any guess of why she seemed familiar contained within a half-smile. “You guys are playing after us, right?”

“I think so. Can’t find Phoenix. She said she’d be off for a little while. Are you Ciarán’s dad?”

Nice, Adam thought. She pronounced the Gaelic name properly, not the Americanized way, and she had a bit of an accent still. Thoughtfully, he wondered if he was right, suspecting he was.

To her, he laughed outright. “Definitely not. Me? Have kids already? No. This little fellow is Bono’s kid.” Adam cursed inwardly at her lack of recognition at the name.

She looked puzzled, Ciarán saw. The boy was confused when Adam continued, “Oh—you probably know him as Paul Hewson. He looks a lot different now.”

“Hmm,” she said, still looking puzzled, though not so much as Ciarán felt. Whatever. He liked her. He realized what Adam had meant earlier, and asked her incredulously, “you’re in a band?” He didn't know any women in bands. He really only knew his dad's band, though.

She smiled. “Yep. I’m on drums.”

His eyes popped wider. “You drum? I can drum…”

Adam had to stop himself from laughing.

Can you?” she asked with a straight face, and listened while he rattled on about the basic drum patterns he could do, commenting that was pretty good, especially since he was so young.

Adam saw the wistful smile on her face when she spoke to him, and the way she winced when Ciarán tried to climb onto her back. He wondered what had happened since he last saw her, or before.

“Sorry,” Ciarán said, biting his lip. “Did I hurt you?”

“It wasn’t you, and it wasn’t that bad. I just have a sort of sore spot there.”

“Did you sleep the wrong way? That happens to my dad sometimes,” he whispered conspiratorially. "He says it's not from jumping around onstage, but Ali doesn't believe him."

“No, I—ah—“—she winced—“—I have a bit of a scar on my back.”

“From what?”

Ruth closed her eyes briefly, remembering like a phantom gust of rain…

It happened when she was a few paces away from the bus, having stepped off of it. She was suddenly almost hurled to the ground; someone grabbed her arm and ran fast and far in the brief seconds before something seared against her back in a shockwave: not far enough.

They had both fallen to the ground, she and a man, a boy a little older than her. She was thinking in shock that her knees were wet from the rain on the pavement. Automatically, with a different sort of shock in his eyes, he picked himself up brokenly and she felt something else against her back and had to bite her lip hard against the sharp flare of the pain shifting.

“Shit,” he said quietly, knowing the burn must have been a bad one.

“What…was…that…” she managed to say. As she turned her head, half-hearing his response: “someone set off a bomb”, she saw with glassy clarity the red and orange flames seizing furiously a large area behind them. She thought she could see the metal frame of her umbrella collapse and reach dying to the ground. She coughed and turned back, not wanting to see clearly the other shapes reduced to ash. She was too frozen to cry.

She didn’t wonder why he’d run before the bomb went off, and was still too shocked from the pain to understand. In the hospital—he had minor burn wounds, hers weren’t so minor—she fiercely fell into the idea of him, trying to forget the fire, the burns, everything but the hands pulling her out.

“Something that shouldn’t have to happen to anyone,” she answered, and ducked into the changing room, changing out of her jeans into dark pants and a cleaner shirt carefully. The contact with the skin of her back didn’t hurt this time, it had just been surprising before…


“Holy shit,” Bono breathed, when his eyes adjusted to the sudden bright lights from the stage. The band after them was coming on now. Edge and Adam took his profanity as either irritating or hilarious—either way, they were silent, and Bono was absorbed in what he saw onstage.

“I know her.”

The woman who’d been in the pool, her hair still wet now, was easier to see in the stagelights, and he realized why she looked so familiar. The hairs rose on the back of his arms.

“Sure you do,” Adam commented.

“That’s the drink talking,” Edge agreed.

“No, I…” He blanched, still shocked. “I’ve seen her in a dream.”

Adam snickered, but Bono let it slide. He stared at the woman’s green eyes, the blue streak in her hair, and the infectious look on her face.

He heard a voice behind him, turned, and saw Larry and Eve. Eve was smiling quietly. “Dreams are important,” she said. He frowned, looking back at Phoenix. This was very…very odd.

Someone clambered onto him. He looked down, and realized it was Ciarán. He instantly felt awful, having nearly forgotten about his son, and sharply glad he was all right.

“Where were you?” he asked.

“I couldn’t find where you were,” Ciarán began unhappily, before his face transformed and he practically bounced up and down.

“I met a drummer and she’s a girl and she’s with the band and she’s really really great!” he told his dad.

“Did you now,” Bono said. The significance of the drummer eluded him; he was still preoccupied with the strangeness of Phoenix existing. Did that mean the dreams…

“I met a girl drummer!” Ciarán told Larry, clambering off of Bono’s lap and settling in between Larry and Eve. Larry just looked thoughtful, though he commented, amusedly, to Ciarán: “Girls can do everything. Stop being surprised.”

Ciarán chattered on to Larry, while Phoenix’s band did a very brief soundcheck. Eve sighed a little ruefully.

Bono was still in shock. He couldn’t look away, or at the man on second guitar, or the woman drumming. The lights dimmed a little, and then brightened. Phoenix looked reflectively out into the crowd, calmness not revealing the issues there had been earlier with the previous soundcheck, and spoke with a clear voice into the microphone.

“We were going to play a song by the Replacments, since by tradition, we usually start with covers” she began, and then, “what? Haven’t heard of them?” She shook her head, smiling. “Shame. Well, this song is not by them…a man in the water changed my mind. Don’t go losing your head,” she warned quietly, “it’s a valuable thing.”

A few notes of the guitar began, from the man farther back, and Phoenix bent her head slightly, the song strengthening as she added the guitar’s rhythm and the drums started. Acoustic, Bono noticed. Interesting. He’d never heard this song acoustic before. He wasn’t sure which one it was yet, only that he had heard it before. Somehow even acoustically it still held a tension, a heady dangerous feeling, perhaps from the warning in her eyes. Even in dreams, her eyes had always seemed to communicate something.

Can you remember…remember my name

she began, her voice low and intent, quietly powerful. She didn’t look at him, only out into the distance. The sky raced in her eyes. Was that sadness he saw? Or did she laugh silently? He was still a little bothered that she was real.

As I flow through your life
A thousand oceans I have flown
And cold spirits of ice
All my life
I am the echo of your past

She drew that line out, the vocals tightening as she came back down to earth.

I am returning the echo of a point in time…

No doubt, it was acoustic, but there was still a strength to this song through her voice.

Distant faces shine
A thousand warriors I have known
And laughing as the spirits appear
All your life

Shadows of another day
,” she half-yelled quietly.

Her voice climbed in a sudden refrain that shivered through him:

And if you hear me talking on the wind
You've got to understand
We must remain
perfect strangers

The chill shot through him again.

Meanwhile, Eve tried to catch Ruth’s gaze, her heart pounding. There was a chance Ruth wouldn’t notice any of them were there, and something…she had to speak to her sister. She didn’t know why. It wasn’t that she hadn’t seen Ruth in years. There was something else.

She didn’t get the chance to, even when there was a silence at the end of an energetic, almost angry song called ‘Invisible Fire’. Or after the next song, ‘Leaving’. Eve gave up and went outside on the off chance she’d be there when they left. She could still hear Ruth singing softly, with Phoenix on the guitar and no drums, echoing through her mind.

Invisible fire
Shot through the night…

Invisible fire,
he holds so tight

Running to
running away

Invisible fire
tears through the day…

Little fragments of the past echoed alongside it, cutting through the night like a half-remembered dream. There was something she needed to tell Ruth, or something Ruth needed to tell her. What was it? Invisible, forgotten…

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Old 02-27-2011, 05:45 PM   #2
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GAH! So here's where they all meet! RUTH!
Um... that story about the scar... that was shocking... but not too hard to guess...

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Old 02-27-2011, 05:47 PM   #3
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Yeah, I made it a bit more obvious than it needed to be ^^ it was necessary. I'm going to try and make everything as un-confusing as possible in the next couple chapters; it's at the point where everything's being explained. Well, mostly.

Also, it made no sense for Ruth to meet Isaac and just...fall in love with him. No.

They meet sort of, but it's not over yet...I have no idea whether Bono has regained his powers of speech properly
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1986, adam, bono, edge, joshua tree era, larry, out of control

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