After spending the whole day learning the guitar parts to every song on the setlist, my fingers were out of comission. My calluses were definitely rebuilt, but it was going to be painful to play at the show. I could get through it, though. I mean, this was the first time in a long time that I was feeling anything.
I used to love playing guitar, it was my go-to whenever I was stressed or sad or angry or just bored. It was like a secret language that I was gifted enough to be able to speak. But after Shayley cheated on me, I really lost my will. I fell into a bad depression that finally this tour was helping me drag myself out of.
I honestly didn't picture this happening, though. I kind of hoped I'd go on tour with a little-known punk band and we'd grow close as they got more popular. That's what I imagined when I took this job. But It was almost always month-long tours with well-known bands who were never on the bus, meaning we never really got close. It just left me with an emptiness I had been hoping to escape.
I was in the bathroom putting on my makeup when a knock came at the door. I finished putting on blush and brushed through my straightened hair once more before opening the door. It was Aaron.
"Hey," he smiled shyly, shoving his hands in his pockets.
"Hey, bitch," I narrowed my eyes at him.
His eyes got wide and the smile dropped off his face. I turned around, trying to keep a straight face, but failed. I began laughing and held out my arms to hug Aaron. He relaxed a bit and hugged back.
I turned back to the mirror and continued with the painstaking process of applying eye shadow. "You need to lighten up Aarbear!" I giggled.
"Sorry, Addie," he smiled sheepishly. "I've just never really met you before. I thought you hated me for some reason. I mean, the way Austin talked about you, you sounded like a really cool girl..."
"The way Austin talked about me...?" I raised an eyebrow at him in the mirror.
He blushed. "Sorry... uh... I probably shouldn't have said that. But uh... we need to do sound check soon and the guys sent me to make sure you were ready in the next..." he looked down at his phone. "Ten minutes."
"Alrighty," I sighed. "I think I'll be done by then." Aaron nodded and walked away. He was a sweet guy, but he was awfully self-conscious. I just hoped I didn't scare him off.
I let my thoughts wander as I switched my attention to my eyeliner. What had he meant by the way Austin talked about me? I mean, I didn't realize the guys still remembered me until they asked for me to be their tour manager. I got a warm feeling in the pit of my stomach and smiled, they hadn't forgotten me after all.
I finished off my mascara and put on my lucky Vans, then walked inside the venue for soundcheck. It took a little over half an hour, but we had fun. I got to make funny voices into my mic and I got to play my guitar solo for the crew, who all applauded. Austin got to scream ridiculous words like "moist armpit" and "anal fistbump". It was kind of gross, but I couldn't have given less of a shit. I was just glad to be back with my guys.
Finally, an hour later, it was showtime. Crossfaith went on and was pretty sick, then it was BMTH's turn. They definitely killed it, but I felt confident that we could bring the house down. Austin promised that if I was having trouble he could grab a guitar and help me out, but I told him I was fine. I needed to do this myself.
We stepped onstage and the bright lights hit my eyes. Oli and Matt were standing the side opposite and smiling while giving me a thumbs-up. I took a deep breath and stood in front of my microphone waiting for Austin to run out. Tino sat down at his set and clicked his sticks together, telling us to get ready to play the opening. I played the opening guitar riff to O.G. Loko and smiled as the crowd roared. Austin ran onstage just in time for his part and the roars got louder. We played a few more songs before Austin stopped to catch his breath. We still had a half an hour left and I guess Austin decided I needed an intro.
"Hey guys," he yelled. "This is our fan-fucking-tastic tour manager, Adeline Presley!" There was cheering and a few whistles. "Our guitarist Alan is out for the rest of the tour because he's been having some health issues," Austin explained, clearly not wanting to tell their fans that Alan was In rehab. "So this hottie agreed to play for us." The crowd clapped and whistled again, and Austin returned to his spot onstage. He smirked at me and Tino counted off our next song. Four songs later, we were preparing to end the show. The last song was Second & Sebring.
The audience began to wave lighters and a lot of them got teary-eyed, a few even full-on sobbing. Nearing the end, Austin started crying just the slightest bit and Aaron and I sang in unison. This is not what it is only baby scars... I need your love like a boy needs his mother's side. The lights went out and the show was over. I had never felt so satisfied in my life.
I ran over to Austin and wrapped my arms around his neck. He gave me a sad smile and hugged bag, pulling me close. I laid my head on his shoulder and we just stood there, taking in each other's warmth. Finally, we pulled away and his eyes were all red. I knew he really loved his mother and it made him sad to know she hadn't been at his graduation, nor would she be at his wedding. But I knew Austin didn't want my pity.
I felt a hand on my shoulder and turned around to see Phil's huge grin. He wrapped me up in a hug, rubbing his sweaty self all over me. "You did great, Ads!"
"Thanks, Phil!" I smiled. "Sadly, not everyone can play like you," I winked.
"You don't need to play like me, Ads. You're plenty badass!" Phil smirked.
I smiled and turned, trying to walk back to take a shower, but was stopped by Tino. Well, I ran into him. He smiled down at me and flipped his soaked hair back. "That was fucking kickass, Presley!"
We fist-bumped and then he winked and said, "Catch you later." I smiled and finally made my way into the dressing room. I had my own shower since I was the girl and I didn't feel like letting the guys see me naked. I rinsed and made sure everything was shaven to the best of my abilities. I wrapped a towel around my body and one around my hair and dried off.
The guys were all waiting for me by the time I had gotten dried off, dressed, and my makeup back on. They informed me they were going clubbing, but I stayed behind. I wanted some time to myself to think about Austin and I.
I didn't even realize how long it's been since I've updated, man... Wow...