The Tour

The Tour

A Story by Nick.B

Another story about Jack's life, just a man trying to survive

While waiting for the plane, Jack's mind was wandering to the same old place: Diane. The break-up had wounded him badly.Because of his broken soul, his stage performance had actually gotten better. Jack always thought that if he didn't have Diane, he can share that feeling with millions of people through his songs. That was the thing that people liked him, his lyrics connected with the heartbroken crowd, his music healed their souls but made Jack's soul feel even emptier. That was the price to pay, he always thought.

"We are going to play in Hong Kong! Isn't it great Jack? I have heard many stories but have never witnessed  the magic of the city with my own eyes...How cool is that?", said John, the drummer of the band. His excitement was more intense than the others. He had gone outside the country before. He looked at this tour as a big adventure.

Jack's wasn't paying much attention to John,but he glanced at him and said

"Sorry, Johnny. My mind was elsewhere, what were you saying?"

John knew that Jack wasn't the same as he had been throughout his youth. He had gotten better, but his life was still a total wreck.

"I was just saying how great it is that we are going to Asia."

Jack wasn't that excited, and as his eyes turned elsewhere, replied to John,

"It's not such a big deal John. Just another country full of  people with their dreams crushed. " Jack was sad himself, he knew that his crowd only contained people as desperate and crushed like himself.

John couldn't believe what he was hearing, he couldn't even see a hint of smile on Jack's face. In his mind Jack was cold, the only time when John could feel Jack's true emotions was on the stage.

"Damn...are you always this gloomy?", said John who glanced over at him, but Jack was not paying attention, he was in a different world.

After 5 minutes, Jack received an text.

"Have a nice flight Dad! you."

From his cold look, Jack started to warm up. He looked at the phone and smiled for a few minutes. John looked at him and thought that it was from someone special. He never saw such a big smile from him, except for when he was together with his family.

"News behind your dream land?", asked John who looked at him and started to think "Maybe he's human after all?"

"How did you know?" Jack knew that he wasn't the same since the split-up nothing managed to bring a smile to his face.

"Well...I never saw you smile like that, so I guessed that this was from someone important." How right he was. Jack didn't care about the money any more; all he wanted was to have his family back. If he could, he would trade all his life for them.

As the band got into the plane, Jack took the seat in the back. He wasn't in the mood to crush another band mates excitement, he wanted to be alone with his thoughts. He still couldn't believe that his daughter sent him a message on his phone. Looking through the window he saw an ordinary family who entered another plane. There was a tall man kissing his daughter and holding hands with his wife. He was jealous of the trio as they stepped into that plane.

"I'm such a f*****g d****e...", he sighed, "that could've been me up there sharing those moments... Oh well..." Jack sighed again.

"Hey, where's that damn drink." That was Jack's answer for everything when he was feeling so down.

Steve, the bass player, looked in the back where Jack was seated and said,

"Keep up that pace, Jack, and in a few years you will be playing guitar somewhere up there.  " Steve admired Jack's gift, he never saw such a skillful artist, but the problems he had been facing lately were too much for anyone to handle.

"You know, Jack! You have this special gift that many of us will kill for, and you are just wasting it away. Drinking is never the answer." Added Steve.

Jack wasn't the sort of man to open up to someone. He always acted as a lonely person and he seemed that he didn't care what anyone was thinking about him. Every time someone gave some advice about Jack's private life he answered with a bad joke.

"It's probably not the answer, but it sure makes me forget about a lot of stuff." With a sad face he looked at Steve as if he wanted to cry out for help, but his ego always got the best of him.

"Very funny, Jack. Joke all you want but someday you will regret for this intense drinking of yours,"  said Steve with a loud voice. He was the one who brought the band together, he was the leader of this group, he always kept them united, and resolved all their issues. Jack was a big problem with his intense drinking and the way he looked, Steve was worried about him.

"Regret...ha! Drinking is what's keeping me up to talk to you, otherwise I'll be somewhere puking from the boredom of this conversation."

Steve could not believe how Jack was behaving.

"You're acting like a ten year old, Jack! I know you have problems back at home, and I'm truly sorry, but this is not the way to get them back." Steve still thought that there was the old funny, happy Jack somewhere deep down this sad and broken man.

"Oh! Now you know about my problems...what about that. Now leave me alone this is a fifteen hour flight, and I don't want you boring me on how to be Mr. Right guy. Just leave me alone. ", said Jack with calm who was waiting for the pilot to announce the run on.

"And, where the hell is that damn drink?" He yelled. Steve was back to his seat, he was sad about Jack's condition but he felt that it was impossible to talk to Jack.

"Such a waste. A guy with his potential and he is wasting on drinking.", said Steve with a disappointment in his voice to Mark, the band's singer.

Steve and Mark grew up together in the same neighborhood, and it was their idea to start a rock band. Steve was the smart one in the band, the one who was thinking before acting while Mark wasn't that bright, but he had an amazing voice that could make tough people who never cried in their life to experience this feeling. His blonde hair, and ripped body made him the most wanted singer between the girls. He was just another pretty boy who didn't finish high school, but his voice was magical.

"Yeah, too bad indeed. He is quite a guitar player, but anyway it's his life not mine" Steve looked at Marked and could not believe his indifference towards Jack's way of wasting his life away.

The plane took off, and inside it was mostly quiet. Steve was watching a movie, Mark was listening to music, John was reading a book about the culture of Japan, and Jack was drinking his fifth glass of whiskey. Jack closed his eyes, and tried to get some sleep, but he couldn't sleep. Nightmares took over his mind, it was the same old dream he had for weeks. He found himself between a big hall with two closed doors, the hall was dark only the doors were shining. When he opened one door, there were two bodies covered. Frighten and curious, he wanted to check whose bodies those were, as he got closer his heart was beating faster and faster when he got close enough to unveil them, he heard a scream through the halls, the voice was familiar but when he tried to unveil them he always wakes up.

He woke up full of sweat and he was thinking what was that dream about. What could all mean?

"Hell...I need another drink."

A flight-attendant saw his pale face, she was worried about his condition.

"Are you alright sir? You don't look so good. Can I offer you anything?" said the tall, redhead flight-attendant. She was a young twenty-three year old girl, her innocent face and blue eyes made her look like she was much younger.

"Yeah, another drink." Jack didn't even look at her while he was talking, he was wondering about the dream.

"Don't you think you have had enough, Sir?" She knew that all rock-stars were drinking heavily during the flight, but this was her first time in this special plane.

Jack looked at her with indifference and smiled.

"Look lady, I cannot sleep and I need something to drink until the part of the brain that produces pictures will not work, so keep them coming..." another bad-joke from Jack about his drinking problems.

The flight-attendant looked at him with shock, she never had such a passenger before, she didn't know what to do.

"I'm sorry sir, but you had enough."

This wasn't what Jack wanted to hear, his face turned red, he thought that this girl had some guts for not giving him a drink.

"Let me tell you something, you seem like the kind of woman who thinks that she is perfect, smart, but let me tell you something! You are just a waitress in a plane lady! You're waiting for something to happen in your life, but guess what? It will never happen. So how about that drink?"

She felt like the world was collapsing around her. She never experienced anyone so mean. Her face got all red, she felt that it was unbearable to do her job after this scene that Jack provoked. Tears were pouring from her eyes and ran she off.

"I'm such an a*****e." He felt guilty, but his pride would not let him apologize to the stewardess. Jack looked at his watch, they had twelve more hours of flight. It seemed like torture for him.

During the whole flight the band was quiet. They arrived in Hong Kong safe. John was amazed immediately by the aura of the place, even if they were only in the airport he couldn't hold his excitement.

"Feel that ambivalence, this isn't like home, it truly is something else. Hong Kong here we come!" The whole band looked at him and smiled, they didn't know what he was talking about, it was only just an airport.

"Hold on there Johnny boy! It's just the airport. Wait until we get to explore this place a bit." said Steve with his calm. Jack couldn't understand John's enthusiasm. In Jack's mind this was just another city like all the other ones full with broken people waiting for something to happen from life.

Fans were waiting outside the airport screaming their names, in the fan's eyes they wanted to have the band's life, to experience the glamor, money, fame, but they didn't know their real problems outside the stage. They were like gods to them. As the band tried to make their way to the car, Jack was walking with his head down he was only thinking how about the stewardess incident he thought to himself why he was hurting everybody so much lately.

As they reached the hotel, the manager was waiting for them outside. There was a short, skinny man in his late fifties greeting them.

"Welcome! Welcome! I hope you will enjoy your stay here in our city, this is the best hotel this town can offer." He gave the band their keys to their room. Jack took the key, went to his apartment. The apartment was on the top floor and one of the most exclusive. He thought of every hotel room that he was into looked the same. Jack felt for a walk, he just threw his bags in the room and closed it. John wanted to knew if Jack was all settled in.

"Hey Jack! Where are you going? " Asked John curious.

"Outside to take some fresh air, Johnny." And he was heading through the elevator before John could even say another word to him.

They were in the Central District of the town, the people were flowing down the streets, walking fast, minding their own problems. Jack blended in well, he was looking at the big skyscrapers that touched the sky. He wondered the streets for hours thinking what his life has become with no family, only him in a big hotel room. Life wasn't turning out to be all he wanted.

After several hours he returned to the hotel, the hotel manager was looking for him.

"Ahh, there you are! I was looking all over for you. Where have you been?" asked the manager with a bright smile on his face.

Jack wondered what was this all about, no hotel manager ever looked for him in his other tours.

"I was for a walk. What's the problem?" Jack was curious what could have happened while he was away.

The manager lost his smile and tried to explain.

"You see, the hotel is very full right now. I'm so sorry for telling you this but I moved someone from your staff to your room. It's big enough for you two, again I'm so sorry for this."

Jack felt more relaxed, he thought that something happened to his friends during his long walk.

"Okay no problem, could you tell me who it is?" Jack had no problem sharing a room with someone.

"I think her name is Amanda. Yes that's it. Well if you have any trouble feel free to call me," said the manager and left.

"Amanda? Who could that be? From my staff?" Jack didn't know any girl from his staff, all the people he knew were the sound engineers, and the cameraman.

As curious as a child waking  up on Christmas day to look for his presents, he entered his room to meet Amanda. Jack entered the apartment but no one seemed to be there, then he heard the shower running. He still was thinking who was this Amanda.

When the girl finally finished her shower, she entered the living room. When  she spotted him, she yelled,

"I can't believe this? You?!"

Jack could not believe this as well; Amanda was the stewardess he verbally assaulted during the flight. He didn't know what to say. Amanda was in a state of shock, she couldn't believe that her worst nightmare was there.

"I can't believe this is happening to me! What have I done  to deserve this? That was the worst flight of my life! Thanks a*****e!" Amanda was angry, Jack understood this anger very well, he deserved it.

"Okay, I'm so sorry for what happened. I know I shouldn't have spoken the way I did. I'm truly sorry." But Amanda didn't want to hear any excuses. Only the thought of being in the same room with Jack was unbearable.

"Okay. Look, I don't care about your apologies, all I want is for you to disappear, but it seems like that's impossible. Try not to stand in my way, will you?" She still couldn't believe, the manager promised that it will be a great room to share with a guy, but she never thought that this was the guy was talking about.

"Hey, I'm not thrilled to share the room with you either, but that's the way things are right now." Jack hadn't been pleased at all when he saw that the stewardess was the girl in his room.

"Damn...I need a cigar" He searched his pockets for a cigar and a light. He lit the cigar while he was smoking it he felt more relaxed.

"Now, I will take the bedroom. Got that? Mr. Superstar?" Amanda had a petrifying look towards Jack.

Jack more relaxed answered.

"Fine by me, lady. Lock yourself there, and I hope I don't see your face again." Jack tried one of his unfunny jokes. Amanda didn't even answer back, she went to the bedroom to unpack her luggage.

Jack, lonely in his room, poured himself whiskey into a glass and drank it. Amanda went out all dressed up, she was heading for a date with the pilot but she didn't say anything to Jack.

"Hey, where are you going?" Jack remarked that Amanda was all dressed up. Amanda could not believe the nerve Jack had.

"It isn't any your business. I am only a waitress in a plane waiting for something to happen with my life!" And she slammed the door on her way out.

Jack was feeling guilty about what happened. But what else was left? He had already apologized? He thought that she had a point for being mad at him. There was nothing left to do but to drink once again.

He opened a new bottle of whiskey and started to question life, if there was more to life than sitting in a hotel room drinking all day, waiting for the concert day to come and to get it all over it. Then history was to repeat itself all over again to different place with different people, the only thing that will never go away was the hotel room and the problems.

Jack desperately searched for a cigar. Realizing that he was out of cigars he grabbed his leather jacket and went searching for a tobacco store, he knew that he saw one on his way to the hotel. After buying the pack of cigars he went to a bar to have another drink. In Jack's mind drinking in bars was less pitiful than drinking alone, he wanted to be around people looking into their eyes and reading their problems.

As he went to the bar he saw Amanda sitting at a table with a mid forties, midsize, buff man who was undressing her with his deviant eyes, from the outside he seemed like a well mannered man, but his mind was elsewhere. Jack thought he knew this man, he then remembered that this was the pilot of the plane.

Jack ordered what he always drinks when he feels down with blues, a glass whiskey, while he was drinking he turned to see if Amanda and the pilot were still at the table. It was just Amanda who was sitting alone and looked bored. Jack approached her to make a sincere apologize this time.

"Hey! We have to stop meeting like this.", said Jack with an elegant smile. He almost scared Amanda, she was looking elsewhere and she never thought that even in this place she can't escape Jack.

"Thanks for scaring me. What are you doing here anyway? Were you following me?" Amanda thought that this nightmare would never end.

Jack once again smiled at her and said.

"No, it's nothing like that. I've just walked in here, then I saw my roommate. Again I'm so sorry for what happened, I'm going through a tough break-up and I'm feeling like s**t. " That was for the first time when Jack was being honest, but Amanda didn't even looked at him, she was waiting for her date to come back from the mens room.

"Let me make it up for you, Amanda. Let me buy you a drink, and start all over again. What do you say?" Amanda sensed a change in Jack's voice. He was more appealing now that she knew, he had a sensitive side

"Sorry, but I'm on a date. He should come back anytime now. Sorry Jack, but no." Amanda looked sad, Jack knew that this date wasn't great as Amanda would like, the pilot had a strange look in his eyes that seemed weird in Jack's mind.

"That guy? Come on. Don't tell me that you like this...whatever this thing is." Amanda felt that Jack was right, but she never showed it. She looked furious towards Jack.

"Look Amanda, I saw how he looked at you. These sort of men only want one thing from women, and I can assure you that he doesn't want hugs or a kiss on the cheek." Jack had got Amanda's attention, she found her date interesting but never thought that he was that kind of man.

"If you ever change your mind I'll be on the other table staring into the abyss of wounded souls. Be there or I'll join them. " Jack saw Amanda laugh.

"There you go. Still got it.", said Jack who smiled at her.

While he was getting up off his chair Amanda's date finally showed up from the bathroom. He was looking strangely at Jack, with a mean smile on his face he shook hands with Jack.

"Well the famous star at our table. Pleased to meet you, name's Patrick." He was looking directly into Jack's eyes, trying to intimidate him.

"Same here. Well, you kids have fun, okay?" Jack returned to his table.

Jack was standing alone at his table and a strange feeling started to capture his soul. He then realized that he had been missing all of those special family moments that makes them strong together. He missed his wife's sweet kisses and his daughter's warm hugs that made his day look much better than they were. Jack was thinking about all this while he was looking through the empty crystal glass. He began to wonder how lucky a normal person can be, they can spend time with their families, be there when they need him, but Jack was different he wasn't the normal next door boring father.

After half an hour while Jack drank, he turned to the table where Amanda was, unfortunately she and Patrick left. Sad and drunk, Jack left the bar and headed straight to the hotel. He entered the hotel looking for someone familiar but it was too late at night for someone to still be awake. Jack reached his room only to find that in front of his room was Patrick who tried to talk Amanda into sleeping with him. Amanda was trembling with fear.

"No, stop it, Patrick we can't!" Said the frightened girl who had just played with fire. Patrick was the kind of man who doesn't have any respect towards women; all they were good for in his eyes was sex. He began to grab her waist and to kiss her neck. Amanda tried to push him away but he was too strong.

Seeing all this, Jack knew that he needed to take action.

"Hey buddy! The lady already said no, tough luck! Why don't you get the hell out of here!" Jack spoken with calm. He was two feet away from Amanda and Patrick.

"Oh yeah? What is it to you? You want her? You're a rock-star you can have anyone. Now why don't you leave us the f**k alone." Said Patrick with a threatening voice.

"Unlike you. I'm a gentleman, I don't treat women that way, buddy. So I'm asking you nicely one more time. Get out." When Patrick heard all this he left Amanda alone and was going straight to Jack, the only thing in his mind was to give him a lesson. Patrick tried to throw a punch but Jack successfully blocked it and threw a punch of his own knocking Patrick down, Jack threw a few more punches leaving Patrick with a broken nose and laying down in the hall. Jack and Amanda went to their room, Amanda was still scared of what happened.

"Are you alright? I told you about men like this," Amanda could not believe that the person who she hated most just saved her. Still shaking she nodded her head.

"Okay, I need a goddamned drink right now, want to join me?" Jack saw that Amanda was frightened, his only answer to fear was drinking, he offered Amanda a glass of whiskey, but Amanda went straight to the bathroom to calm herself down with a hot shower. This was a crazy night for her. First she thought of Jack as one big narcissistic a*****e, then that a*****e saved her. She wondered if Jack has some good left inside.  

After Amanda finished her shower, she went to the living room where Jack was listening to the classic rock station on his radio.

"Can I ask you a personal question Jack?" Amanda feared that Jack would get mad, but he didn't mind any personal questions.

"No! I will not sleep with you Amanda!" Jack always tried to hide himself by using the same old bad joke.

"But okay, go head" Jack poured himself another glass.

"Why do you drink like that? I mean, it doesn't affect your way of thinking?" Amanda felt that something wasn't right.

Jack looked at her and sighed, after a few seconds of silence he said,

"To fill the empty gap that is in my heart.." Jack sighted once again "I wasn't always like this, I ran away from home since I was fifteen but always found away to climb up. Now it's impossible, I can't climb no more..."

Hearing all this Amanda felt intrigued and sorry about Jack's way of life. She was more curious about what broke Jack so bad. She moved a chair next to him and looked into his brown eyes and tried to read his past.

"So why this attitude towards everybody?"

Jack opened his eyes, and looked at the ceiling. After a long sighed he replied with much regret in his soul.

"Not sure, maybe because a particular person, maybe because of life or maybe because of all the s**t that keeps following me."

Amanda never thought that Jack had someone who he loved, she thought that all rock stars were just seducing beautiful women for one night stands.

"So there is someone in your life."

Jack glanced at her for a moment, and smiled.

"Yeah...something like that. Like I said, I constantly f**k everything up. She gave me too many chances, I don't know if I could still be in her life."

Amanda saw in Jack a whole different person. He wasn't that same guy he was back in the plane. He seemed more human.

"Have you cheated on her too many times?" Amanda always had this portrait towards musicians.

"Never, I couldn't ever sleep with another woman while she was with me. It was more of a communication problem. I was tired from all the concerts, she was feeling lonely, vulnerable and found someone else who has a steady boring job, who comes home from work at 5PM, who listens to her. But I'm going to ask you this Amanda. Will he ever love her, like I do?"

Amanda couldn't answer, she just looked at Jack, and started to understand where this hate and anger comes from.

"At least I still have Christie, my little devil, guitar playing, heavy metal listening, girl.", Jack added.

"You have a daughter?" Amanda was in shock, she never knew that Jack had his family.

"Yes. She tries so much to make her mother believe that I could change, she still wants us back." Jack talked about his daughter with a big smile on his face, all his problems were erased.

"When I first saw you, Jack, I thought you were just being a dick, because that was  your nature, but deep down you still have some good intentions. Just be aware, if you will still go down the same road you are now, you could reach the point of no return. "

Jack smiled while he was looking at the bottle of whiskey.

"What if I've already reached that point?"

Amanda grabbed his hand, and with a warm smile on her face, she replied.

"Just be your true self Jack." Amanda thought that Jack could still be saved, he was just lost deep into darkness.

"I don't think it's that easy, this abyss I'm falling into is devouring me day by day." Jack  laughed in a pity way for a moment and then continued "Have you ever wanted to relieve yourself by just screaming?"

Amanda couldn't understand what Jack's point was.

"I don't think I've got the last part, screaming? Why?"

Jack scratched his head, had another drink and tried to explain.

"Yes, to scream, because it's so lonely and dark out here. I never thought that this life was so cold. Why can't I be a boring father who works in a boring company from nine to five? " Amanda felt that she hadn't got the strength to answer. She felt tired, it was a long and crazy night for her, she needed a rest.

"I think I'm going to sleep. Just think about things, see you in the morning."

"Okay, sleep tight." Jack smiled as Amanda was headed to the bedroom.

Jack was lonely in the living room, he thought about Amanda's words. On the radio, Jack heard one of his favorite songs, an old rock song.

Mama take this badge from me / I can't use it anymore / It's getting dark too dark to see / Feels like I'm knockin' on heaven's door.

Hearing his favorite part, he raised his glass as a salute to the classic song, and sang with desperation, all his insecurities, problems were in this verse.

"Mama take this badge from me / I can't use it anymore / It's getting dark too dark to see"  he sighed, and felt asleep through the waves of the warm music who was letting him sleep well.

© 2013 Nick.B

Author's Note

I don't know if it's good or not, waiting for you to criticize my work (be honest please)

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I love this one too

Posted 8 Years Ago

This is a really nice piece of writing, though I'm usually not a fan of sad stories. There are a lot of interesting thoughts behind it too. I'm assuming your first language isn't English? In which case, you've done very well to be writing in English and there are only a few mistakes throughout the whole thing! Well done. :)

Posted 8 Years Ago


8 Years Ago

Yeah, you assumed right(still...trying to get better and better)...but thank you for the review, I'l.. read more

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2 Reviews
Added on January 5, 2013
Last Updated on January 5, 2013
Tags: Adult, Dark, Depression, Drama, Fiction, Inspirational, Life, Pain, Sad, Short-story, Young-adult



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