(Make sure you’ve read Saturday’s post before you read today’s, in case you were away over the weekend…! And look below for news about the threesome everyone’s been asking about…)
We had room service because I was not ready to face other humans and I also wasn’t ready to face not being in the same room as Ziggy yet. I wasn’t really clear on what meal of the day it was. Breakfast? Lunch? Dinner? All of the above? I honestly couldn’t tell you if it was the middle of the night or the middle of the afternoon.
I don’t remember what we ate. I do remember having a nap and waking up to find him staring at me with a concerned look on his face.
“Everything all right?” I asked.
“I was going to ask you that,” he said.
“That’s too deep a question for me to answer on my day off.” There was still ice water on the room service tray, which was sitting by the TV where we’d left it. I drank a bit of water and lay back down, feeling exhausted, like my bones were too heavy for my frame.
“So tell me about how the tour has been going,” he said, sitting next to me. I think this was Ziggy’s attempt at making non-incendiary small talk.
“Pretty good. Overall no complaints. No pyromaniac homophobes, anyway.”
He cracked a smile. “And Remo’s all right with you taking charge of the band like you have?”
“Remo practically forced me to,” I said, then regretted how that sounded. “He claims I would’ve gotten bored if I didn’t.”
“Would you have?”
“Not in two months.” I shrugged. Maybe if the tour were six months long with no break… But having not tried that, I didn’t know. “Every show’s different—some are differenter than others.”
“You seem to get along with everyone, though, you know, like they all look up to you even though you’re the youngest.”
Ziggy picked up dynamics of people and relationships quickly. He’d only hung around with us, what, a couple hours and already he was noticing things like that? “Age really doesn’t matter.”
Then I was going to tell him about Fran and Clarice adopting me but I realized they might not be out to Ziggy and wouldn’t want to be outed. So I kept my mouth shut and told him something else instead: “It’s a little weird touring with such a large crew. Most of them I never even see them or hear their names. The good part is, I guess, even if I’m the boss on the stage, I don’t have to be responsible for any of the rest of it. Remo worries a lot more about that stuff, but he’s had the same people working for him for so long I don’t think he actively worries about it very much anymore.”
I sat up then, and put a hand on Ziggy’s shoulder, and he sat very still waiting to find out what I was going to do, I guess.
I kissed him on the cheek.
“Just trying it out,” I said quickly.
“I wasn’t going to.”
We stared at each other a couple of moments and in the old days that would have been it, I would have changed the subject, right? I decided I had to talk about the elephant in the room. I had lost the knack for total avoidance, I guess. “You do realize why the whole thing with Janessa sets off every bit of paranoia I’ve ever had that your relationships with women are going to bring down ruin?”
Ziggy had that tiny vertical frown line between his eyebrows. “You’ve always felt that way?”
“All the way back to Carmen DeSoto,” I said with a shrug.
“God. How did you remember her name and I didn’t? I was racking my brain last night trying to remember it.”
“Last place we saw her was here,” I said with exaggerated mildness. Insert faux nonchalant whistling here.
Ziggy made a pained noise. “I can’t quite say I thank her for giving me the kick in the balls that led directly to me dragging you into bed.”
“Tricking me into bed.”
“Yes. I’m sorry.”
This was a familiar old argument and therefore was weirdly comforting. His apologies were perhaps starting to sink in though, because instead of rubbing it in, I said: “It would have happened between us sometime, I suppose.” See, I could admit that much now. “I just wish you’d…been a little more honest.”
“I know. I was hurting and too cavalier and everything stupid all at once.” He leaned over and brought his nose close to my ear, then brushed his cheek along my cheek like a cat. “You know I’ve been regretting that for a long time.”
“I know. I just can’t seem to forget it.” I brushed my thumb over his cheek. I had a strong feeling I was going to be obsessed with cheeks for a while. “It’s a part of our history. But we were talking about Janessa.”
“Ah. Yeah.” He had that thoughtful, soulful look. “I guess I can see why you’d worry. But you don’t seriously think I’m going to like…get married and move to the suburbs to have two-point-five kids, right?”
“I dunno if I’d go that far, but I do think someone being the mother of your child might be a much bigger threat than you just having a piece of tail here or there.”
“Huh. I always thought you’d be less threatened by women than by men,” he said, the frown line deepening as he studied my face. “I’m not usually this wrong about you.”
“You’ve never snuck out of the country with a man,” I pointed out.
“Or disappeared from a gig to meet one.”
“Or stayed behind in a city for one.”
“When was–? Oh. New York.” He grimaced. “That was in, what, 1987 or something? And didn’t you stay behind, too?”
“To have a meeting with a record company,” I reminded him.
He scratched his chin. “Did I even know that?”
“No, because you’d already gone off with a woman Bart and I didn’t know.” That wasn’t the exact timeline of that showcase at The Pool Bar, but it got the point across.
“That was a long time ago, though.”
“I know. And you’ve gotten much more responsible about gigs and career since then. To say the least. But my point is all of your biggest flakeouts in all the time I’ve known you have involved women.”
He stared at me like I’d just proved up was down and water was dry. “That…that doesn’t seem possible and yet…you’re right.” He pulled at a thread at the hem of his shirt and it started to unravel. “I guess it’s good, then, that you’re not particularly threatened by men…?”
“That’s the Catch-22 isn’t it, though? If I believe you can’t be committed to men, I believe you can’t be committed to me.” I sighed.
“Ouch.” He looked at his fingernails and I saw he’d marred the black polish on the edges with his teeth. “But you know it’s not like that with us.”
“Do I?” I couldn’t bring myself to tell him again how the doubts doubled and tripled in my mind when the only way I could hear his voice was through searching the radio dial.
A riff, chorus, and song concept came into my mind suddenly. “Flying Blind,” about trying to fly a plane or maybe land one with only someone’s voice on the radio to guide the pilot, but actually about that late night A.M. radio signal being a lifeline when you’re a lost soul. And actually about having no fucking clue where a relationship was going but still doing everything possible not to let it crash and burn.
I don’t think he answered my question, which was more of a comeback anyway. But maybe I was spaced out thinking about a song. He brought me back to reality by saying, “Hey, while we’re on the subject, did you ever tell me you were part-owner of Digger’s company?”
He didn’t say it in an accusing way at all. But maybe that’s why it felt so much like an accusation, because Ziggy needed something to put me on the defensive.
So I defended myself. “He only gave me part of the company because he’d ‘borrowed'”—I put scare quotes around it with my fingers—”from me without telling me and I said if he was going to take my fucking money he better give me something in return instead of just trying to sneak the money back into my account when I might not notice.”
“Ah.” That pained syllable held a pound of sympathy and understanding.
I wanted to be sympathetic back, but… “I probably would have told you when it happened, but you and I weren’t speaking that week.” I rolled my neck. “It was toward the end of the warm-up tour.”
“Ah,” he said again.
We sat in silence for a short while, mulling our thoughts. I felt genuinely bad for having basically beaten him up about his shortcomings nonstop for the past hour, but at the same time it felt like he was actually listening to me. And that was something.
“Do you have a car out here?” I asked.
“If you can get me to San Diego tomorrow before sound check I’m yours until then,” I said.
He brightened. “This isn’t like you.”
“What, not running away from a problem immediately?”
“That, and planning ahead, and…” he said the word very carefully, “…committing to so much time with me.”
“You want to go find that taco stand?”
“No no, we just ate. Later.” I knew what we should do now. “You want to work on a song?”
“Yes,” he said without hesitation.
“I’ll go get a guitar.” I hopped off the bed, suddenly energized. “Meet you back here in ten. I could do with a change of clothes, too.”
“I’ll be here,” he said, lying down in the spot where I’d been, like a cat finding a sunbeam.
(Last two days for the DGC meme contest! If you’ve been meaning to jump in, now’s the time! Only a couple of you have entered so the chances are very good right now…! *Click for rules*
Meanwhile, much talk has been going on–for years really–about what a Daron/Colin/Ziggy threesome would be like. Here’s the deal. I’ll write a threesome scene and send it as a reward to everyone who posts a review for any of the DGC ebooks on Amazon volumes 2 through 7 between now and October 1st. That’s right, email me your age statement [18+] and a link to your review on Amazon and I’ll email you back the scene! PLUS if we can get ALL of the ebooks to have 20 or more reviews each, then I’ll make the scene available for everyone to read. I’m pretty sure you guys can accomplish this goal! I’m looking forward to writing the scene!