Havoc:Mayhem Series #4By: Jamie Shaw
There’s an elbow on my head.
My boobs are smashed against a barricade, a Converse sneaker almost just kicked me in the face, and there’s an elbow . . . on top of . . . my head.
“ADAM!” my cousin screams over the music that’s blasting out of gargantuan speakers piled high at the sides of the stage. I pull my neck down just in time to avoid the arm she throws over the railing, and the elbow on my head follows me deep into my turtle shell.
“Adam!” she yells again as she jumps on an invisible trampoline in the front row. “Down here! Adam!”
The lead singer of The Last Ones to Know is crouched down at the edge of the stage, his fingers reaching out toward the mash of girls gathered at his feet. They’re climbing over each other to try to yank him into the crowd, and I’m just here, trying not to die.
“I fucking love you!” Danica shrieks as Adam serenades the fans front and center. His knees poke out of the bare threads of his jeans as he stretches his black-nailed fingers toward the crowd, and the way his lips caress his mic . . . well, it’s no wonder half of these girls have gone rabid.
All week, I’ve had to listen to Danica talk about her rock star ex-boyfriend. About how madly in love with her he was. About how he worshipped her all throughout high school. About how his band is finally making it big.
The only problem is, her ex-boyfriend isn’t the lead singer.
At the back of the stage, in a black T-shirt that’s damp with four songs’ worth of hard-earned sweat, Mike Madden beats on the drums with arms that have been sculpted to do nothing else. He wields his drumsticks like they’re extensions of his own body, radiating power as he sets the beat for the war song in the club. He’s not lanky or dressed in distressed clothes like the rest of the band, but there’s no mistaking it—he’s a rock star.
“I thought you were here for the drummer?” I shout, but my voice is as tiny as the rest of me, lost under the swell of the music and the frenzied screams of the crowd. I try to hold my own as I get jostled left and right, but I’m at the mercy of the waves upon waves of people that slam into me from all sides.
“I WANT TO SUCK YOUR COCK!” some chick further behind me screams at Adam as she tries to jump past the gigantic sweaty guy molded to my back, and Adam smiles wide under the glowing blue lights without missing a single lyric. The crowd is absolutely insane, but the band has obviously seen it a thousand times before. Even Danica’s frantic shrieking can’t get their attention.
“Shawn!” she desperately pleads when she notices the lead guitarist glancing down from his spot at Adam’s right. In a vintage tee, with messy black hair and a thick layer of stubble, he shreds his guitar and shouts backup lyrics into his mic. He and Adam weave a song, line over line over line, and I almost start to enjoy it—right up until my hand gets snatched from the railing.
“Help me get his attention!” Danica orders as she yanks my arm high over my head.
I’m fighting for control of my limbs, in serious danger of getting sucked backward into the music-fueled chaos, when Shawn finally locks his sights on Danica.
A crease forms in the center of his brow, reminding me of this stray cat that used to live on my family’s farm . . . It was only friendly when it went into heat, and then suddenly its favorite thing to do became weaving figure-eights around my dad’s denim-clad legs. My dad hated cats, particularly this one, and he used to make this face—a face almost exactly like the one Shawn makes at Danica.
“OH MY GOD!” Danica squeals, clamping a freakishly strong hand onto my shoulder. She spins me to face her, and I latch on to her arms to avoid getting knocked sideways into a thrashing whirlpool of elbows and armpits and hair. “Did you see that?! He looked right at me!”
A violent wave crashes into me when Adam hits the chorus of the song, and I struggle to keep my head above water. Blue and purple lights cut across my skin as I get slammed back against the metal bars in front of me and Danica shouts her undying love to every single guy on the stage.
Adam! Shawn! Joel! Mike!
She doesn’t waste her breath on the female guitarist, introduced earlier as Kit, but I don’t bother commenting—because I’m too busy ducking to avoid getting kicked in the head by another crowd surfer. A security guard drags the screaming fan over the barricade and ushers her away, and at the weary expression on my face, he gives me a sympathetic look that promises, It’ll be over soon.