Lesley and Bart are crouched in a ditch in the
woods, pale-faced with fear. Water falls on their heads.
“What in God’s name just happened?” Bart asks. “Was that
a water tornado or am I losing
my mind?” Lesley just shakes his head. He’s too scared
to speak. “Seriously, did a tornado of
water just pass by us?” Lesley rolls his eyes.
“It wasn’t funny the first time, Bart,” he says.
“You know what else isn’t funny?” Bart shoots back.
“You and your lack of wherewithal with that sword.
Why didn’t you use it back at the storage
space? You had ample opportunity, but
nooooo. Instead you let me get shot in both feet.
I could bleed out, Lesley, and it’d be your fault.
You just stood there like a pussy, staring at
a hot girl, talking about a book about
firemen. What the fuck is wrong with you? Who
does that?” Lesley sighs and shakes his head. “Come on,
he says. “It’s getting dark outside. You said Stu’s
place is still 20 minutes away, right?” Bart
nods and smirks. “Are you afraid of the dark?” “No!”
Lesley replies, a bit too quickly. Bart laughs.
“For the love of God, Lesley, you have a sword.”
“So?” he replies. “I don’t know how to use it.”
Bart exhales. He’s annoyed. “You’re worthless,” he says.
“Come on, little girl. Let’s get moving before
the big scary monsters come out and get you.”
“Shut up, Bart,” Lesley says, beginning to walk.
Bart watches for a moment, then nods and walks
after him. “Maybe there’ll be lions and
tigers and bears and you can sing a song with
them about how much you love flying monkeys.”
Lesley makes a face and turns back. Bart shrugs. “What?
Is that not how that one goes? Does it bother
you that I don’t know the words to The Wizard
of Oz? Am I offending you, Dorothy?”
Lesley rolls his eyes and increases his pace.
“I hope we don’t run into a poppy field!”
Bart shouts. Meanwhile, at Stu’s house… He’s on the
floor, flipping through his record collection. “Let’s
see,” Stu says, finally making it past the
18 Bob Dylan albums towards the front
of the plastic milk crate he keeps albums in.
“What sounds good this evening?” He pulls out a
David Bowie record, but slides it back in
and continues shuffling through until he
sees Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy. “Ah,
he says. “I know just the song.” He removes the
vinyl from the sleeve, drops the needle and the
air is filled with the sound of John Bonham’s voice,
speaking to us live from the grave. “We’ve done four
already, but now we’re steady. And then they
went: 1, 2, 3, 4.” Stu yanks the needle off
the record and takes a puff from his pipe. As
he exhales smoke he chuckles, slightly. “I love
that count-off,” he says. “Bonham sounds pissed. I bet
Jimmy Page was piss-drunk, laying on the floor,
trying to make it through the song and failing.
That would explain why the guitar lead is so
sloppy at the beginning. They just played through
though, and they nail it. Robert Plant even yells
‘It’s so good,’ when Jimmy gets back on rhythm.
Also, you know that line, ‘She is only three
years old, but it’s a real fine way to start?’ That’s
about his daughter, Carmen Jane. He changed the
line in concerts to reflect her age at that
time. That’s what I love about music. Details.
The devil’s in them. It’s what you find in the
middle of the onion after you’ve peeled it
that really sticks with you. It’s what makes you cry
or laugh or vomit. Whatever floats your boat
or tips your canoe, I always say.” Stu is
lying. He’s never said that before. “Shut your
pie hole, Author!” he shouts, dropping the needle…