Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 6
They flew over the landscape, the stars above them. The sea below them, and a whole lotta unanswered questions between them.
Jimmy spoke up, as they glided along. "So... just a question, if you don't mind me asking?"
"Yeah?" grunted Peter.
"Don't take this the wrong way, Peter... but how did YOU manage to get into heaven?"
"Why, Pagey? You don't think I'm a good guy?" Grant prodded, not looking at Jimmy.
"Oh, no, you're FANTASTIC, Peter. There's no doubt in my mind about that, but-"
"Then what's the trouble? It takes more than a few dirty words and busted heads to send a man to Hell, Pagey."
"I'm still not convinced..." Jimmy said cautiously. "You've never really been an idyllic image of spiritual salvation, Grant."
"Alright, alright, you REALLY wanna know? I'll tell you. Arms racing, Pagey, arms racing. As much as it twisted God's titties to have me in heaven, he wanted me out of Hell even worse."
"Why? WHY? I was in charge of YOU tosspots for twelve years. If I can
Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 5Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 54 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Jimmy couldn't think straight. His mind was a blur of memories he had tried to lock away for years. Memories. That's all they were. Memories. How could a memory do harm? It couldn't, could it? Not unless one allowed it to.
He got up from the chair and paced back and forth. What the hell just happened? How many more dead drummers were going to come and torment him tonight? Fuck, if only Peter were here. Peter would set him right. He was the best manager ever to walk the earth. Peter would pull him up by the lapels and say, "Jimmy, get over yourself." He smiled a little. "Jimmy, get over yourself. Hop in the car. I'll buy you a drink. You won't remember any of this in the morning." Good old Peter Grant.
"CLANG! CLANG!" The bell struck two, and sure enough, another strange lighted flooded the crack beneath the restroom door.
"Page!" a low voice beckoned.
Jimmy ducked. He didn't really know why. So far, he'd endured a night of the walking dead, time-travel, and exploding restroo
Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 1Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 14 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
December 23rd, 2006...
"That's a wrap." said Robert, putting down his headphones. "Everything's sounding good. I'm heading home."
"Already?" Jimmy muted his guitar with his palm. "It's only 11:00."
"We've been here since noon, Jimmy. I can't pull these all-nighters anymore, and besides..."
"Besides what? I thought you WANTED to do this reunion."
"Well yeah..." Robert sighed, "...but you know... it's Christmas eve tomorrow."
"Oh." Jimmy scowled and began plucking out a tune on the guitar. Robert sat in silence for moment, and then spoke up again.
"I'd really like to start the drive home tonight so I can be home with the family in the morning."
"I suppose you would, wouldn't you?" Jimmy sneered. "I also suppose that means you won't be coming in to rehearse tomorrow."
"It's only once a year, Pagey."
"There are only so many days in a year, Robert, and there are so many hours in day. Each hour wasted is money."
Robert laughed. "Oh listen to you. You with more mon
Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 3Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 34 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
Jimmy was a wreck. The minutes ticked away, and not a sound came in from the streets outside. No cars, no wind... dead silence, and Jimmy had become prisoner of it all. He sat, plastered to the chair, his eyes fixed on the clock.
"Two minutes till one..." he thought, "...still no sign of any ghost." His heart raced with anticipation as he watched the hands on the clock steady edge toward the hour. Had he REALLY just seen Bonzo in the studio?
"Poor old bastard." he thought, "It COULDN'T have been an illusion... could it? I never touched him... I couldn't. But he FELT so REAL." He tried to recollect in his mind the ghost he had seen only an hour ago. Sure enough, it was Bonzo in every aspect. The same voice, the same cheeky grin... but oh that pain. It was so foreign to the drummer; a side Jimmy had never seen. The suffering, the regret, and oh God, that CHAIN. THAT CHAIN!
"CLANG!" rang the bell.
Jimmy froze. He stopped everything. His breathing, his thoughts, and carefully s
Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 4Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 44 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"Keith? Can I ask you something?"
"What does my missing a few Christmases have to do with damnation?" Jimmy swallowed. "That is... I'm not really sure I understand yet."
"Remember what I said back in the music shop, Page?"
"I guess so, yeah. Something about... uh... kindness to your fellow man."
"More importantly than that, Pagey, the significance of one action, and how it can leave behind a wake of influence."
"Yeah, the guitar-teacher to me, me to a billion fans. So what? That's not a bad thing, is it?"
"It works the other way too, Page."
"I suppose that makes sense, yeah, but-"
"Look." Keith pointed forward, and Jimmy looked to see himself, a younger man again, talking to a younger Robert Plant in what appeared to be a venue's green room of some kind. He had a guitar in his hand, and looked ready to go onstage.
"Fuck, I was skinny." Jimmy remarked.
"Listen." Keith instructed. Jimmy did so, and walked closer to the two musicians. He took a seat on the nearby sofa, and listen
Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 2Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 24 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
"Last chance?" Jimmy choked. "Bonzo? What? I-"
"Listen, I was allowed to come back here for only one night, Pagey. I'm doing you a fucking favor." Bonzo indicated the chains and the bottles hung around his body. "This represents the misspent hours of my life, Page. The greed, the stupidity... but more than that... all the things I DIDN'T do. The time I wasted."
"Wasted? Bonzo, you came to every studio session! You gave up weekends, holidays... anytime the band needed you, you were there."
"My point..." Bonzo said grimly.
"Sure you had some rough patches... the drinking and all fuck else, but when it came down to it, you were always a good man of business, Bonzo."
"BUISNESS?!?!" Bonzo thundered, grabbing Jimmy by the collar. "My CHILDREN were my business! My FAMILY! My respectability, my heath, and my forbearance, and benevolence, were, all, my business. The dealings of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!"
Jimmy was aghast. "I had no idea you pos
Symbols and Smartasses: A Led Zep FicSymbols and Smartasses: A Led Zep Fic4 years ago in Flash Fiction & Vignettes More Like This
"You know, if you stare at your hands long enough, they start to change colour... have you ever noticed that?"
Robert lifted his head to see if the bassist was paying attention. He had his head emerged in a book, as usual. Reading. Move along, Robert. Nothing to see here.
"Hm?" came a minimally-attentive grunt.
"Have you ever noticed that?"
"Nevermind." Robert sighed. "Why are you always reading when I try to talk to you?"
"Why do you always try to talk to me when I'm reading?" Jonesy replied, without batting an eye.
"Why can't you just answer me like a normal human being instead of answering me with more questions all the time?" Robert growled. "That's something smart-asses do to make life difficult for everyone."
No reply. Jonesy was back in his book, and Robert was alone again. Bonzo never pulled this shit on him. Bonzo would agree with him. Bonzo would start staring at his hands right away, and then reply in that thundering voice of his, "Bloody fuck, R
Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 8Christmas Carols: A Led Zep Fic: Part 84 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
The black mist surrounding Jimmy and the spirit dispersed, but although they were no longer in the black abyss, the air around them felt as cold and as desolate as ever.
Three men stood around a table bearing a large bottle of whiskey, shares of which each of the men held in small glasses. It was a bleak, gloomy looking room, but the men were all laughing and drinking in some sort of grim celebration.
"It's a damn shame. Great loss to the music world. Great loss." A mam sighed, taking a swig of whiskey.
"Well yes and no. I'd say the ol' bugger was at the end of his rope anyhow. I don't believe we could have squeezed any new material out of him if we tried. He did that ONE reunion, and then what? A big goose egg. So much for re-inventing the wheel, eh?"
"Who do you suppose he's left the rights to his music to?" another man inquired. "His bandmates, perhaps? I don't believe he had any spouse I could name... his personal life was about as successful as his solo albums."
"Well he certainly
Needle and the Damage Done 7Needle and the Damage Done 74 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
I was in paradise once.
It really wasn't that long ago. Physically, I mean.
But I could almost cry at how long ago it feels mentally.
I was in paradise that one day. That single day, the first bedazzling break into ease, and I was overwhelmed with relief and the thought that anything could ever have been any different felt so childish.
I was comfortable. Sitting around a fire in blanket with a cup of milky sugary tea kind of comfortable.
But I wasn't just that.
No, I was euphoric.
I was in nirvana.
I was kissing the creator.
And I've tried to get back there.
I've taken the same path I took in the first place, but it never leads me back to the fire.
It never leads me back to that glittering dawn that filled my whole body to the brim with purest, most complete contentment.
Now I feel crooked. Something's not right. My mind is fuzzy
All My LoveAugust, 1966.All My Love4 years ago in Short Stories More Like This
The audience erupted into cheers as The Yardbirds stepped onto the stage, ready to perform their first gig of the night. The young guitarist, James Page, eyed the crowd up, taking notice of one particular girl standing with a group of friends. Her dark curly hair fell to her shoulders, and her lips formed to a smile when she realized the guitarist was actually looking at her, and not one of her friends.
Now as you can imagine, after the gig was over, Jimmy made a beeline for this "special girl". Introducing himself as the one and only James Page, the young women introduced herself as simply Katie. Jimmy then proceeded to escort her to his room, and you can probably figure out what happened next.
The United States, 1973
"Bonzo get the bloody door!" Jimmy shouted, as he lay sprawled out on the hotel couch, Jack Daniels in hand. It was early afternoon, around 10:00 or so and the band had some free time for a whole week before playing at the Tampa Stadium. "I g-got it, hold y
Needle and the Damage Done 10 I'd been wrong. It wasn't weird in the morning at all. Robert was already awake and through my instant withdrawal from waking, I could hear him vaguely in the other room.Needle and the Damage Done 103 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
I actually considered using this time behind his back for a quick snort, but he'd seen it coming and hid my things somewhere. I was almost distainfully uncool with that.
"Robert," I croaked, pulling the blanket onto myself a bit more.
"You're awake." He was immediately in the door way looking for my confirmation that I was okay.
But I wasn't.
"What time is it?" I asked him instead.
"Two o'clock. You slept in."
"Wow. No shit."
Yeah, I'd slept in. That accounted for the unusually strong effects of coming down I was experiencing. It had been at least twelve hours since I'd last shot up. God knows the only reason I slept so long without waking up was because of Robert's arms around me.
"I made breakfast," he said sheepishly, cocking an eyebrow with some hope I would eat.
"I wish I could stomach it, Percy
Needle and the Damage Done 11Needle and the Damage Done 113 years ago in Introductions & Chapters More Like This
I woke up to someone drumming at my back.
I craned my aching neck to the side just to see Bonzo smiling down at me.
"Are. You. Fucking. Serious," I snarled. I had a deep sleep going on for once. That meant more easier hours not wanting to shoot up. And Bonzo kills it with his urge to drum on other humans.
"Hey Pagey. What's goin' on?" he asked, seemingly oblivious to the deep shit I was in.
"What's going on? I'll tell you what's fucking going on." I pushed his hands off of my side and raked my greasy hair back. "The only peace I get in hours, and you fucking wake me up?! Who the fuck told you to come here anyways?" I felt a bit bad later about yelling at him, but at the time, I was goddamn pissed off.
"Robert. Robert did. He told me he needed to go for a walk and he wanted me to watch you."
"What? Was me sleeping too boring for you? You had to---- Bonzo, get me the painkillers, would you?"
He got up and grabbed them from the table and tossed the bottle to