651. Enjoy the Silence

Sometimes the things you want the most are the things that hurt the worst.

He sang and I played and I don’t know how he could sing and cry at the same time but somehow he did it.

Part of me still blamed him for throwing this away–for not realizing or for ignoring the fact that signing that deal was going to mean throwing this away.

But part of me had grown some perspective with time, and I was starting to think maybe no matter what we did, even if he’d fought alongside me every step of the way, maybe there was no way to save Moondog Three as we knew it. Not with Mills dead set against us, or against me, anyway. That bit Barrett had said about the performance bonuses vesting suddenly made sense. No wonder Mills had pushed so hard to have Ziggy sign the deal–he’d get to keep his own monetary interest in the M3 property, but get rid of me.

Whether it was “true” or not, maybe I was just ready to shift some of the blame I’d put on Ziggy onto a more convenient villain. Onto someone I didn’t need to love.

So we cried. We grieved for what was lost no matter whose fault it was. When the song ended I put the guitar down and held him, or he held me, I don’t know–my mind went dark and blank and I just hung onto him waiting for it to stop hurting.

He didn’t try to hurry me. I didn’t cry this time, just sat there the way you do when you’ve dropped a hammer on your foot and you can’t do anything but wait for the pain to subside.

When my brain started working again I looked him in the eye and said, “I’ve been thinking about getting a tattoo.”

“Of what?” he said softly.

“You remember the rocket you drew on the shoulder of my jacket?”

He nodded.

“That. I want that. It’d be easier if you could draw it directly on my skin, though.”

He raised an eyebrow. “You mean you’re thinking about getting it done…tonight?”

“What do you think? If we’re going to that taco stand in Silver Lake anyway…”

He brushed my hair out of my face with his hands. “I think we pass a couple of places that are open late. Are you sure, though?”

I nodded. “Been thinking about it for a while.”

“Even though it looks more and more like…Moondog Three is no more.”

“You think the tattoo would be too much…holding onto the past? I think it’s more like leaving a record of where I’ve been.”

“Hm, that makes sense.” He lay back on the bed then, his arms over his head. “I’ve been thinking about getting one, too.”

“Of what?”

“I’ll show you. You tell me if you think it’s too corny.” He rolled over and hopped off the bed, digging in his bag to pull out a notebook.

He flipped past many pages of lyrics and journal entries until he came to a section of sketches. Flip flip flip. “Something like this.” He showed me a page.

The sketch was of a bit of music staff, with a single somewhat sylized eighth note sitting on it.

Huh. I looked at him. “I’m assuming this is treble clef.”

He nodded.

That meant the note was a D. Plus the note itself looked a little like a lowercase d. I sometimes signed my name that way in autographs.

I felt a flash of hot and cold, looking at it. He basically wanted to put my name onto his skin. Permanently. “Zig–”

“No matter what happens,” he said, before I could say anything more, “it’s like you say. Even if…if you’re in my past, it’s a record of what was important to me.”

That hurt, and it sounded like it hurt him to say it. It hurt to reply: “Is there only one way to be in your future?”

“No!” He clapped the notebook closed. “No, definitely not. If you don’t want to take the musical director gig, don’t think that means I’m going to cut you off in a huff.”

I gave him a look.

“Seriously, Daron. I’ll try never to be that stupid about love versus career again.”

Wow, that was better than an apology: it was an actual admission of guilt. An admission that he knew in some way he had chosen $15 million over me. I felt instantly better. How weird.

Outside it was evening. He drove and I navigated and not quite an hour later we were stuffing our faces with tongue tacos so good they were better than sex. And although life was complicated, somehow sitting next to each other at a picnic table and licking salsa off our fingers wasn’t.


  • s says:

    Wow, it seems like you guys might be (FINALLY) *approaching* being on the same page…at least about love and money. I wondered if we’d ever get to say that. I spent some time last night rereading all of Ziggy’s bonus chapters and some of his more vulnerable scenes trying to stabilize him on that pedestal I put him on so long ago, the one he’s been teetering on the edge of recently. And here he goes and stabilizes himself. Nicely done, Zig, nicely done.

    And the rockstars are finally getting ink!!! Hope you realize your sexiness just skyrocketed! Boys with eyeliner AND tats = YUM 😉

  • chris says:

    I was almost afraid to read past the first sentence. Thankfully, the feeling of dread and doom went away and left behind just a case of warm fuzzies!

    • s says:

      Yes, that was sneaky of her to only give us that little tidbit instead of several lines like usual. My heart was racing! She’s a genius, an absolute freaking genius.

    • daron says:

      Jeez and we’re not even getting along *that* well. But I guess by comparison it’s a huge relief. (It was for me, anyway. Funny how him just saying a few of the right words in the right way can affect me that much)

      • s says:

        True you’re not getting along *that* well, but the fact that we have another chapter without either of you saying “fuck you, that’s it, it’s over” coupled with talk of getting tattoos that kinda link you together AND he seems to be ready to make a commitment to you (don’t lose your shit over that word!), is definitely enough to make us feel better about the state of things. I’m keeping in mind that the last 4-5 chapters have all been the same day for you and that it took me 4 hours to form a semi-coherent thought after Ziggy’s girlfriend’s bombshell. So I’m still fully expecting some more shit to come, but I’m taking the happy moments when you give them.

        • daron says:

          I’ve never been one to lose my shit over the word commitment. That’s someone else you’re thinking of.

          • s says:

            Yeah he’s a total chickenshit. I was thinking about when you said you’d never be boyfriends, and the fact that, no matter how committed someone actually is, the word itself seems to freak people out sometimes. It’s a heavy word. Glad you’re comfortable with it.

            • daron says:

              “Boyfriends” is a bad word not because of commitment but because it equates to soul-crushing banality. At least for me. But something tells me with Ziggy banality would never be a problem. At least life is never boring with him around?

  • Amy says:

    If watching D&Z from the outside is this much of a rollercoaster, I can only sympathize with how it must feel for them on the inside of it. But it seems like finally they’re learning to trust that they both want to love each other.

    • daron says:

      it was eye-opening to realize that Barrett was more accepting of the idea of Ziggy and me in a relationship than I was. Just a tiny thing that helped me get over myself a little, you know?

  • Amber says:

    Awww…I just want to hug both of you. And I love both of your ideas for tattoos.

  • sanders says:

    After the experience with Ziggy’s diary and that sometimes a few lines was all we got, I was prepared for that first line to be all there was today. I’m really glad to be wrong. I wouldn’t say this is a warm fuzzy section as much as… it feels honest in a way the boys haven’t with each other in a while.

    I’m also amused at the timing of the tattoos–I just got my first one a couple of weeks ago. Daron, they don’t hurt nearly as much as you might think, at least not after the first twelve hours or so. Besides, you survived getting caught on fire. I doubt a tattoo will even register on the pain scale in comparison for either of you.

    • s says:

      I think I would have died if that was all there was to the post. Seriously.

      Listen to the lady, Daron. I have 3 and none of them hurt. I fell asleep while getting one of them. Your burns were definitely worse, unless your artist sucks. But that shouldn’t be a problem for you given the number of actual artists you have available in LA.

      And Sanders, I want to see yours!

      Shit, now I want another one…it’s been so long since I got a new one I can actually donate blood again. Lol

      • sanders says:

        I realized after I hit post that I said ‘first’ tattoo, implying there will be more. I think there will be more. I have plans for more, at least to make the first part of a set. The worst part for me was that it’s about two inches below the elbow of my dominant arm, on the inside of my forearm, so I kept accidentally trying to drape things over it. Like my giant purse.

        We should brunch Sunday.

        • s says:

          Hehe. Yeah I’ve had an idea for one on my inner wrist for years, but given my line of work I already look like a cutter and it would probably get shredded to pieces. Sigh.

          Can’t do Sunday. The last HP movie at IMAX is this weekend and I planned to go Saturday but now I have tickets to a football game so I’ll be watching Harry kick some ass on a 4 story screen Sunday. Next weekend?

      • daron says:

        It hurt like a motherfucker, actually, but yeah, compared to being burned in the eye… Well, the thing is there’s almost nothing that hurts more than being burned in the eye. So it’s not a fair comparison.

        More on tattoos next chapter.

        • Amber says:

          I can’t imagine being burned in the eye but I did get a small paper cut in my eye once. Hurt like a motherfucker is about the only description for it.
          I’m thinking about getting a tattoo myself but I’m having trouble deciding on where to put it.

          • daron says:

            yeah I don’t recommend anything in the eye really…

            I guess the question is do you want it somewhere *you* can see it or somewhere *other people* can see it? (Or neither?)

          • s says:

            This is definitely a situation where size matters. If you want something really detailed it’ll have to be bigger or the details get lost. So you want to match that to the right body part or it won’t look right. Daron’s right too. Do you want it somewhere easy to cover, for work or whatever, or one that’s pretty much always on display? Also, I’ve been told that over the ribs and the top of the foot are the most painful ‘common’ places to get one, if that’s a deciding factor for you.

            • Amber says:

              As I just told Daron, I do want to be able to cover it but I want to be able to see it myself. It’s one word of text and I haven’t decided on the font yet. I know depending on how detailed the font is I will need to have it big enough that the details aren’t lost or going to blend together over time. Pain is not really an issue for placement. I was thinking about the side of my foot but I read that healing it can be difficult with shoes on all the time and I’m on my feet the whole time I’m at work. I don’t want to get something permanent and mess it up because it didn’t heal right. The inside of my upper arm seems the most logical but I’m not sure yet.

              • s says:

                Yeah if you do your foot you’ll want to do it at the start of vacation or something so you have time for it to heal. But I really like the inner arm. I think those look so cool. I have one on the inside of my ankle in that soft part between bone and tendon. It’s my favorite one.

                • Amber says:

                  About how long do you think the foot would take to heal?

                  • s says:

                    Should take a week-ish to feel good enough to wear a shoe. If it’s on the side it probably won’t be too bad because shoes don’t rub there as much as they do on the top of the foot, you know? So if you did it, say, Friday night and had the next week off, so you had about 10 days for it to heal, you should be alright.

              • ctan says:

                Mine are the same place Daron just got his, the upper arm on the outside. A T-shirt covers them. An evening gown not so much. LOL (Fortunately I’m at the stage of life where showing off my tattoos is half the fun of wearing an evening gown.)

        • Bill Heath says:

          I fear that the real pain from that tattoo is not going to be physical. Somebody please tell me I’m wrong.

    • daron says:

      It doesn’t hurt after they stop jabbing you with the frickin’ needle, no… but during, I’d say it was on par with getting a cavity filled.

  • Amber says:

    Thank you, s, for responding about healing time. I think we hit the limit on nesting since I could not reply directly to you.

    • s says:

      No worries. I love tats and kind of feel strongly about people getting EXACTLY what they want with them…ya know, since they are permanent! My sister is a wealthy of knowledge about them, since I quit counting how many she has about 10 years ago. So if you have any more questions, ask away! I will share something I thought was kinda odd. I have one on my back, my biggest piece, and part of it is over my spine. I’d always heard that ‘over bone’ is more painful, so I was quite surprised when it didn’t hurt (apparently being jabbed with needles doesn’t bother me). However, I felt like I’d been kicked in the back for several days afterward. My skin didn’t hurt, but I was really sore. Idk, I’m starting to think I’m weird or something 😉

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