Punk Rock Resurrection

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Punk Rock Resurrection Page 8

by Jenna Galicki

  With his medication tucked safely back in the pocket of his jeans, he fell back into Alyssa’s arms. She moaned softly and resumed her tender yet firm embrace. The protection and warmth of her body eased the havoc reeling inside his head – or maybe it was the medication starting to take effect. He really couldn’t be sure. Maybe it was a combination of both, but the pain in his heart diminished enough to make room for the joy Alyssa brought to his life, and he quietly fell back to sleep.

  Chapter Eight

  When Damien walked into O’Connors, Angel and Jimmy were already seated in one of the booths against the wall. He slid next to Jimmy and gave his buddy a fist bump. Angel didn’t bother with that nonsense and acknowledged his presence with a smile. Absent more than he was in attendance, was the Immortal Angel’s guitar player. “Where’s Karl?”

  “He’s with his lady.” Jimmy scratched one of his long sideburns. “I keep telling him that these lunches are business, but he spends all his free time in Westchester.”

  “It’s a shame,” Angel said with a frown. “I like him, and he’s a great guitar player, but sometimes I feel like he’s not on the same page as we are. Immortal Angel isn’t just for fun. We have a serious chance at making it big, and I’m going to do everything I can to make sure that happens. I’m working with a few new places to secure gigs, like Mulcahy’s in Long Island, and we just got picked up for one of the free concerts at the Jones Beach band shell.”

  Long Island was a new demographic for the band. They’d been playing local bars in Williamsburg and a few gigs in lower Manhattan, but hadn’t ventured further east. Angel was a smart businessman, and Damien nodded to show his support. “Those Friday night concerts at Jones Beach are a big draw. They get a lot of attention.”

  “I’m working on New Jersey, too.”

  The waitress interrupted Angel. “What’ll it be, boys? Can I get you drinks first or are you ready to order?”

  Jimmy ordered a diet coke and Angel ordered hot tea with lemon – always coating the golden throat. Damien wanted Johnnie Walker. Just a shot. Just a little taste to satisfy his palate, but it was barely noon, and he knew Angel would disapprove. It shouldn’t matter what his friend thought, and he knew Angel’s past comments about his drinking were borne from concern, but it still bothered him.

  Damien didn’t want to defend his drinking today. It took a large consumption of alcohol and the better part of a week to forget about the bad dream he had at Alyssa’s apartment. He made it out of the house without taking a drink this morning, but sitting in the pub heightened his senses. He recognized not just the aroma of alcohol all around him, but the individual scents of Jack Daniels, Jim Beam, Tequila, and his personal favorite, Johnnie Walker. He smacked his lips together while the waitress impatiently tapped her pen against her order pad. Angel’s gaze was visible out of the corner of Damien’s eye while they waited for him to place his drink order. “I’ll just have coffee.” At least the caffeine would give him a jolt. He saw Angel relax and turn his attention to his phone. The waitress stuck the pencil behind her ear, stuffed her pad in the pocket of her apron and proceeded to the next table.

  Jimmy nudged him in the ribs. “Tell us about your new chick. Man, she looks too hot to handle.”

  “I can handle her just fine.” Not many people related to each other the way Damien and Alyssa did. Their tastes might be viewed as extreme for some, but the two of them were a match, in and out of the bedroom.

  “I don’t doubt it.” Jimmy scanned through the menu. “The two of you look like you were made for each other.”

  Angel put his phone down and leaned forward on the table. “I want to get to know her better. She was really into the band and made some really nice comments. And she’s an exotic beauty. Very nice choice, Damien.”

  It wasn’t a choice. The moment he saw Alyssa, he was drawn to her and couldn’t look away. He never believed in that love at first sight bullshit. He didn’t know her well enough to fall in love with her. Sometimes he wondered if he was even capable of loving another person. His heart was in a perpetual state of lockdown. It was imprisoned behind a brick wall and incapable of experiencing anything except anguish and pain. Until he met Alyssa . . .

  She was breaking through that wall of disparity. Tender emotions were new and welcomed. She genuinely cared for him. “At least I haven’t scared her off yet.” Jimmy and Angel both looked at him for an explanation. “I had one of my nightmares at her apartment last week.”

  Angel wrinkled his brow with concern. “Was it bad?”

  “Bad enough. When she woke me up I was covered in sweat and shaking.” He pursed his lips to the side. “Some badass punk rocker I am.”

  Jimmy bumped his shoulder. “Stop knockin’ yourself, man. You’re more level-headed than half the people I know. You shouldn’t keep all that shit bottled up inside you, though. I keep telling you that you should talk to somebody. Work through all the jumbled shit in your head. It might help with the nightmares.”

  “Me and shrinks don’t mix. The nightmares only started again since I moved back to Brooklyn. I think it’s because I know she still lives nearby.” He didn’t have to say her name. His friends knew he was referring to his mother. “I’ll work it out. My bass and the music is all I need to set my head straight.” That, plus a hefty dose of alcohol and a little yellow pill.

  “Whatever’s goin’ on, I’m glad you’re back, man. It’s nice to have you in the old neighborhood again.”

  Damien gave Jimmy a small nod of appreciation. Angel and Jimmy were like brothers to him. They were the only family he had, which consoled him and tormented him at the same time.

  The waitress returned with their drinks. “Diet coke, tea and coffee.” She tucked the serving tray under her arm and poised with her pen over her pad. “What can I get you?”

  “Burger and fries, darlin’.” Jimmy offered her a dimpled smile, which she promptly returned.

  “I’ll take the same.” Damien ordered without opening his menu.

  They all waited for Angel. He placed the knuckle of his index finger over his chin while he studied the menu. “What are the specials today?”

  Jimmy laughed. “Can’t you ever just order a burger?”

  “You may enjoy greasy bar food, but my stomach can’t handle something as rough as a hamburger and french fries.” Angel handed his menu to the waitress. “I’ll have a grilled chicken salad with vinaigrette on the side. And no offense about the greasy bar food.”

  She took the menu from Angel and gave him an exaggerated roll of her eyes. “None taken.”

  Angel was so serious when it came to food. It was a good thing that Jimmy’s needling and the waitress’s sarcasm made Damien smile, because he was just about to ask her to throw a shot of whisky in his coffee.

  When they left the pub, the three of them headed down Dean Street towards Atlantic Avenue and paused on the corner. After years of controversy, protests from local residents, and lack of funding, construction of Barclays Center had finally begun. It was still two years away from its grand unveiling and the reason Damien chose the Prospect Heights landmark pub for lunch.

  Barclays Center was barely more than a few beams of steel at this point, but once completed, it would hold 18,000 people. “I never thought the city would get their shit together. How many years had they been talking about building this place?” Damien gazed across the busy avenue. “I can’t believe it’s finally underway.”

  “It’s going to be beautiful and state of the art,” Angel said. “We have to go to the first show. I wonder who it’s going to be.”

  Jimmy looked down Atlantic and across Flatbush Avenue. “Where is everyone going to park, man? This area’s congested enough already.”

  “That was part of the problem, but the Long Island Railroad is practically at its doorstep.” Damien was in awe – star struck by the artist’s rendering of the venue. He imagined that Immortal Angel would play a show there once the building was complete. He knew it was far-fetched, but
it was his dream, and nothing was going to stop him from believing that one day they would grace the stage of Barclays Center.

  Chapter Nine

  Alyssa navigated through the mass of people at The Quadrangle. She was starting to recognize the faces of the fans that attended Immortal Angel’s shows. The crowd was much larger than when she saw the band play for the first time a little more than a month ago.

  She found Damien at the bar, tossing back a nice-sized glass of Johnnie Walker. His tolerance for alcohol was kind of interesting, and a little disturbing. He could consume half a bottle of whiskey by the end of the night and still walk a straight line. Other than a mild slur of his speech and a deep inner-reflection going on behind his eyes, he displayed no other signs of inebriation. Not many people could handle that amount of alcohol with such little effect on their nervous system.

  “Hey.” Damien slipped his arm around her waist. “I didn’t hear you sneak up next to me.”

  She motioned to the half-empty glass in his hand. “That’s because you had your face stuck in that glass. You drink a lot, Damien.”

  “I know.” He wasn’t defending his actions or making excuses. He was simply agreeing with her, because he knew her statement was true.

  A smile tugged at the corner of her mouth. “I’m glad you know better than to argue with me.”

  He placed his forearm on the bar and leaned toward her. “Maybe I should, so you’ll get really angry at me.”

  She pressed her lips together to hide her smile. “I don’t get angry.”

  “Oh no?” He poked her in the shoulder with his finger. “Maybe I should try to stir up some of that fire inside of you.”

  Her jaw dropped open into an open-mouthed smile, and she glanced down at her shoulder. “Did you just poke me?”

  He took a swig of his whiskey and rolled it around in his mouth before he swallowed it. He jutted his finger into her shoulder again and gave her a playful and antagonistic smile. “You mean, like that?”

  She took a deep breath, held it for a second, and laughed as she exhaled. “Keep pushing me,” she warned.

  “That was a poke, not a push.” His fingertips nudged her shoulder. “That’s a push.”

  He taunted her with his smug smile, but she wasn’t about to let him win this game. If he wanted to play rough, she was ready to participate. She took a step closer to him, leading with her breasts. They captivated his eyes, and he stood taller so he could get a better view down her top. She took advantage of his preoccupation with her cleavage, and that’s when she struck. She slid her hand over the front of his jeans and rubbed his erection briefly but long enough for him to press back and gyrate against her palm. She reached between his legs, cupped his balls and squeezed them together. She exerted light pressure, just enough for his knees to slightly buckle, but she was cautious not to hurt him and stayed clear of the fresh piercing.

  Damien gasped and grabbed her waist for support. His eyes glazed over and rolled under his lids for a couple of seconds. He took a few deep, labored breaths, rested his head on her shoulder, and shuddered.

  She felt the smile on his lips and interpreted his body language. He acted like he just climaxed. “Did you . . . ?”

  He chuckled in her ear. “I told you. You drive me fucking crazy. Touch me like that in public and I’m gonna make a mess. Now I gotta go get cleaned up before the show.”

  She threw her head back and laughed. “I can’t believe you just did that!” She put one hand on her hip. “You are too easy.”

  He grabbed her chin in his hand and gave her a quick kiss. “I’ll see you after the show.”

  Alyssa watched him walk away with a smile on her lips. Damien was, by far, the coolest guy she had ever met. He was sexy as fuck, and he was a rock star. They played the same games. Their level of erotic foreplay was paralleled. She had found her perfect match.

  She ordered a beer and took a long sip. When she turned around, there was a sandy-haired girl standing directly behind her. The girl was standing too close and invaded her personal space. It annoyed Alyssa, and she wondered how long the girl was standing there and why she wasn’t saying a word. It was strange. “Can I help you with something?” Alyssa didn’t hide her irritation.

  “You’re Damien’s new girlfriend.”

  It wasn’t a question, and the statement and emphasis on the word “new” struck a nerve. “What’s it to you?”

  “I’ve seen you at all the shows these last few weeks, and I’m just surprised he didn’t introduce us, that’s all.” She was smug and haughty.

  Alyssa didn’t have the patience to play whatever game this girl had in mind. She folded her arms across her chest. “Why should he? Get to the point.”

  “I’m Kendall Rose. I’m good friends with Angel and the band.”

  “I’m Alyssa – Damien’s chick.” She didn’t know why she added the last part. She wasn’t the jealous type, but this girl was acting like she needed to prove her connection to Immortal Angel, even though no one ever mentioned her. Alyssa had seen Angel talking to her a few times, but he seemed like he couldn’t get away fast enough.

  Kendall eyed Alyssa from head to toe with a sneer.

  Alyssa waited to see what else this girl had to say, because she didn’t know how much longer she could hold out without telling Kendall to fuck off. “If you got something to say to me, just say it. If not, you should move along.”

  Kendall snarled her lip. “I was just letting you know who I am.”

  “Look, if you got a problem with me, say it; otherwise, I think you should just go about your business and stay out of my way.”

  Kendall huffed and threw her head back. “You don’t have to get all snotty.”

  Confusion remained across Alyssa’s face as she watched Kendall walk away with her nose in the air. The conversation made no sense, and she wondered who the hell this girl was.

  Alyssa shrugged it off and turned back to the bar. She finished her beer and decided to walk around or maybe head up to the stage and wait for the start of the show. This time, there were two girls facing her when she turned around, but these were the fun girls that she recognized from every show. They were always together and appeared to be inseparable. They were friendly girls with bubbly personalities and similar in appearance. Both had light brown hair and matching brown eyes, and they were barely legal. And they both had some kind of fan girl crush on Angel.

  “Hi. We’ve been meaning to introduce ourselves but the shows have been so crowded lately that we hadn’t had the chance. I’m Kira.” She had a smile as big as the stage.

  “And I’m Audra,” the other girl said. “Sorry we didn’t get here sooner. We saw Kendall bothering you.”

  They both had a contagious energy.

  “I’m Alyssa. And, yeah, what’s up with that chick? She was super annoying.”

  “You’ll find a lot of people feel the same way,” Audra said. Her friend nodded in agreement. “She’s harmless though.”

  “Do you two always come to all the shows?”

  “Every single one. We’re big fans of Immortal Angel.” Audra’s lively smile resembled her friend’s. “It’s very nice to meet you. We’ve never seen Damien with a steady girlfriend before. You two look adorable together.”

  “Adorable?” Alyssa cackled with laughter. “I’ve been called a lot of things, but I’ve never been told that I look adorable before.”

  The lights dimmed and Audra and Kira ran to the stage. The crowd around Alyssa surged after them, and she was left alone at the bar. She wasn’t about to fight the crowd, but found an opening along the wall. She followed the edge of the room until she was close enough so Damien would be able to see her – if he ever opened his eyes and looked into the audience. He was lost in his own world once he started playing.

  The screams were as loud as the music and Alyssa covered her ears. She needed to remember to bring a pair of earplugs with her next time. She watched Angel sing. He was alive the moment he set foot on the stage
. He jumped on the amp, slid to his knees and paraded himself across the front row with a swagger that oozed raw sexual energy. It was a fucking white-hot performance. No wonder people were throwing themselves at him after the show – and not just the boys.

  Jimmy sat behind the drums, shirtless. His arms were covered in brightly-colored tattoos, and from what she could see, so was the upper part of his chest. His beats were loud, and his arms flew across the drums. He had a habit of twirling his drumsticks that was entertaining and occasionally would throw one high above his head and catch it without missing a beat.

  Karl, the guitar player, kept to himself, but played the fast melody with grace and ease.

  In Alyssa’s eyes, it was Damien who held the most allure on stage and not just because he was her man. It wasn’t just his blue mohawk and studded leather jacket that made a person’s eyes gravitate toward him. His calm, composed connection to the music commanded attention. He plucked his bass with a passive-aggressive coolness that said he controlled the rhythm of the music. He was in the driver’s seat, and the other instruments followed his lead. It was an amazing thing to witness.

  The music was something that left Alyssa in a constant state of awe. All of the members of Immortal Angel had a connection on stage. They seemed to interact telepathically and communicated without words. Their timing was impeccable and, as far as she could tell, there was never an error. Angel’s voice was beyond anything she could describe. It was crystal clear, and he hit notes like a seasoned professional, yet he could get down and dirty and deliver grimy lyrics with a sexual prowess. The songs were original, well-written and catchy. Their beat fueled the body. It was impossible to listen to the music without moving your arms and legs. People couldn’t stand still when they listened to an Immortal Angel song.


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