This is a work of fiction. All of the characters, incidents, and dialogue, except for incidental references to public figures, products, or services, are imaginary and are not intended to refer to any living persons or to disparage any company's products or services. Honest.
THIS IS HARDCORE (a cautionary tale)
By Andrew Moody
Some people are respectable, and some are respected: but you can’t have it both ways.
Chris passes me the crack pipe.
“Do you think you’ll live to see your thirtieth birthday?” he asks as I suck the bowl.
“I want to work with children,” I say. “I want to start a giant family, and rule it with an iron fist.”
“What would you call your kids?” Tom asks, slapping the hooker to wake her up. She murmurs, opens her eyes, farts, slumps backwards.
“Boober, Crockett, Jamnose and Killfreak.”
Chris got a tattoo yesterday, above his arse crack. It reads:
I’M PROUD OF MY GAY SON!
Jones paid for it, giggling as the needle went in.
“Cool names,” Chris says.
“I want them to develop complexes as soon as possible.”
“Yeah. Boober will become a rapist, Crockett will become a Buddhist Monk, Jamnose will be a Catholic Priest, and Killfreak will become a supermodel.”
It’s funny, I think, when we watch the tape of this back (Jones has been recording everything for posterity) we probably won’t find any of this the least bit amusing.
Green room, BBC. Waiting for the Jonathan Ross show. Leona Lewis is sitting opposite us, but Tom looks bashful, and Chris is too busy trying to score crack so I slink over to her, and smile. She’s actually a beautiful girl, creamy, coffee coloured skin, perfect pearl teeth, toned, gym physique. She looks nervous, but hopeful.
“You’re Jeremy, right? Hi, I’m Leona.”
“You’ve got such a magnificent voice,” I sigh.
“Thank you. I like yours too, not all the lyrics so much, but there’s a sweetness to it, a…umm. A longing.”
“Don’t take any notice of what the press says about us,” I reply, sitting politely down next to her. “We may be perceived as badboys who don’t care about anything, but the reality is we’ve just had really difficult lives and we’re giving a voice to disenfranchised teenagers whose only escape is through our angry, heartfelt rebel songs.”
“You have a pretty smile. Would you like to hear a joke?”
Leona blushes. “Alright. Is it obscene?”
“Nah, it’s a little blue, but we’re both adults.”
“Okay, lay it on me!”
“There once was a boy, okay, twelve years old. He finds a gun one day in the forest near his school. Later that night he dreams he is sexually tortured to death by a paedophile.”
“Yeah, wait, you haven’t heard the best part yet. He decides he’s going to shoot the school bully who once touched him up in the showers and made fun of his body. While this is going on, he starts an online chat with a beautiful black girl who is a singer and she encourages him to meet her. They swap addresses. But as he continues dreaming of being sexually tortured to death, his plan becomes to shoot up the school bully and then run away with the young, beautiful black singer.”
Her face is falling.
“So he goes into school and shoots five people dead, but because of the immediacy of the event and because he killed them with a hockey mask on, he manages to get on a train and calls his beautiful black online girlfriend. A man answers and says he’s Leona’s father, and he’ll pick the boy up from the station.”
“Nah, that’s not what happens pussycat. The boy is picked up by the beautiful singer’s father and is driven back to an old deserted shack. The boy remembers his extraordinarily pleasurable dream of being sexually tortured to death, and then when the father picks up a rusty saw and a pair of handcuffs, eyeing the twelve year old boy nervously:”
I lean forward, tears are welling in her eyes:
“The man says: “What now”?”
A tear rolls down her cheek. Tom is cracking up laughing. Composing herself, Leona Lewis leans backwards, coughs, and spits in my face.
A grip comes into the green room.
“Five minutes guys,” he says.
“Get this animal away from me,” Leona hisses, and one of her roadies yanks me by the arm and shoves me onto the couch next to Tom and Chris who didn’t manage to score.
“Look!” Chris says.
“What?” Tom asks.
“It’s Leona Lewis! Hey, Leona, can you score me any crack?”
We were in Paris when London started burning.
Smoking Is Cool posters adorn the altar where the girl has strapped me, nude and panting, and she’s saying something like “8MM is the funniest film I’ve ever seen, and I mean, you must agree? Surely? It’s the most conservative view of the porn industry since 8 Mile.”
“Uh huh,” I say, turned on but still bored.
“So what can I do for you today, Sir?” the girl says. “What do you need?”
“You want to see Aiwass?” She asks.
“Seen it. Thought the script needed work.”
“Oh, a comedian?” She smiles, producing a ten inch dildo.
“Get on with it,” I sigh. How many times have I done this? I can’t quite remember, the coke is fucking with my memory. There was that girl after Jonathan Ross in the green room, there were the three Nigerians…
“Uh, ugh,” I moan.
“Yes, let Jesus fuck you,” she smiles, her eyes dilated. We carry on, I come, I come again, I don’t notice much but a slight numbness. She looks disappointed.
“Well,” she sighs, “doesn’t work on everybody. I have some human blood you could drink?”
“Do you want my autograph?”
“I was hoping for a photo together,” she says, instructing some big dude in leather and a gimp mask with a camera to come into the torture parlour.
“Can I put it on the internet?” She asks.
“No such thing as bad publicity,” I sigh.
“Say cheese,” she says.
We’re in the hotel room in Manchester. Tom is crying over the girl he pulled last night who turned out to have a dick.
“Was it bigger than yours?” I ask. “Is that why you’re upset?”
“Clearly,” Tom sighs.
Chris and me high five. Cannibal Holocaust is playing on repeat and we’ve watched the castration scene maybe fifteen times before we switch on Babestation and start calling in randomly trying to get a reaction.
“Hiya babe,” the girl says, her tits slathered with Vaseline on screen.
“I know where you live…” Chris says in a cannibal voice. “I’m going to eat out your cunt with a razor blade…”
She is grinding away, and says (on speakerphone, they mask the calls, all the TV spews is porn music) “Have you got a one inch pecker?”
“I’m going to eat your parents,” Chris says.
“Do you think you’re scaring me?” She is smiling, grinding away.
“I want to eat your brains. Can you tell me where I can find them?”
“Did your mother used to beat you?”
“Only after I beat her first…”
“Why not try Babestation extra, honey. They’re more suited to the hardcore chat. Bye!”
“I know it sounds a bit pathetic,” Chris sighs, “but I’m actually a little disappointed with how that went.”
We’re opening fan mail.
“Ooh,” Tom says, “check this!”
I slide over the page 3 model, a little worse for wear from the Absinthe, and I take the letter.
“Read it,” Chris says, and then: “You wonder what daddy would think about this? You wonder what your little sister would think?” stroking the inside of the page 3 model’s ear.
“My father is my agent and my sister is my twin and we do glamour shoots,” the model smiles, and reaches for a bucket to puke in.
“Goddammit,” Chris says. “Can’t we find some nice middle class girls or something?”
“Dear Smoking is Cool,” I read, lighting a cigarette. “I know where you live. I know where you’ll be tomorrow. I am going to enjoy slicing you up you fucking scumbags. My sister died of cancer last year. I will put you in the ground. Oh,” I say, “and he’s misspelt ground.”
“How did he spell it?” Chris asks.
“Speaking of which,” Jones says, snorting a line, “we’re doing Paris next month. Staying in the red light district.”
“I’m bored,” Tom says.
“Can you be gay then?” Jones asks.
“Men don’t like him,” I say, “his dick is too small.”
Tom sighs. “I measured. I’m slightly below average.”
“It’s an atomised world,” I reply, “status, money, wealth, irrelevant. Unless you’re six point three, not even a billion dollars can save you.”
“Oh shit, really?” Tom starts, looking paranoid.
“We can get you a pump,” Jones says.
“Yeah, it’s true,” the page 3 model smiles, “it’s all girls talk about. We carry tape measures.”
Tom blinks away tears.
“Sorry,” she says, looking sincere.
Tom didn’t come out tonight. We left him in the bathroom with the measuring tape the page 3 model left him. She wanted to come too, but Jones got some bouncers on her and she didn’t mind too much, since one of them had some porn connections and was pushing ten inches, or at least he told her that, so I’m sitting next to Noel Gallagher who says:
“Son, you’re going too fast. You seen that fuckin’ Scott Pilgrim movie?”
“Excruciating, except for about forty five seconds with Brandon Routh.”
“And I’ve seen it before,” he sighs, necking a Guinness.
“How much crack have you smoked dumbass,” I think I say. “And your new band sucks.”
Noel is looking bored of me. He’s a big bloke too, so I make my exit, bump into (in alphabetical order) Adele, Derren Brown, Jessie J, Avril Lavigne (here to rebuild her shattered career) some X Factor dickheads, Derren Brown, Noel Gallagher again, off to take a piss, and head onto the dancefloor where some House anthems are playing with a little of that god awful Spanish Disco Trance and spot Chris next to one of the speakers, out of his nut on something.
“I can see the music,” he says.
“I just met Adele,” I say.
“Was she as boring and fat as you thought?”
“Nothing a clitoral vibrator wouldn’t sort out.”
“Why do women wear make-up and use perfume?”
“Because they’re ugly and they smell,” I sigh.
“You saw that movie too?”
Luckily I slept in the recovery position because I puked up in my sleep, and wake with the hangover from Aiwass after I dreamt that my bed was full of tiny brown tarantulas. Jones is standing over me, looking serious, taking photos.
“Am I dead?” I ask, wiping dried green vomit from my face.
“Nope, but seventy seven people are!”
“Didn’t you see it on the news? A political theorist from Norway wrote a thousand page right wing tract and then went on a little shooting and bombing spree.”
“Was he a fan?”
“Can you call me a doctor?”
“You’re a doctor.”
Jones takes some more photos. “Please. If you die I’ll retire a billionaire.”
“That’s why I love you,” I sigh, “at least you’re honest.”
“What,” Jones says, “you think I’m a fan of your music?”
“I no longer feel the need to explain myself and I don’t owe anybody anything.”
“That’s the spirit. Here,” he hands me a laptop. “Go on Twitter and say something that will cause the children of England to go on the rampage.”
I log in and type:
Will somebody please firebomb Jessie J’s house?
Jones looks at it. “Yeah,” he says. “Subtle.”
The next day Amy Winehouse is found dead. I’m starting to feel like the most influential musician of all time.
We’re in a tattoo parlour in Nottingham on our Northern England tour.
“And just so we’re clear, sonny,” the dude says, “we don’t do swastikas.”
Jones looks nervous. “Even if we make it worth your while?”
“Fucking scumbag,” the dude smiles.
“No but seriously, how offensive can you get?”
“We can do gay, we can do homophobic, we can do anti-establishment, but nothing racist.”
“That is disappointing,” I say.
“So what’ll it be?”
“Smoking Is Cool,” I reply, feeling sad.
“Original,” he says. “Where? On your forehead?”
Jones giggles. “Ooh, go on!”
“On my hip.”
“Pussy,” Jones says.
I call Florence before sound check. She answers, says: “What do you want Jeremy,” but says it blandly, like it’s not even a question that can be answered.
“Hi,” I say.
“What do you want,” she asks.
“A blow job from a crack whore?” I grin.
“Can’t you leave me alone,” she says.
“I love you,” I say, tears welling in my eyes.
“You don’t have that in you.”
“What are you doing right now?” I ask.
“Talking to a rock star.”
“Aren’t you proud that I made it?”
“Proud?” She sounds like she’s crying now.
“Yeah, I did…I mean I’m doing all of this, what I do, my art, it’s all for you-”
I hear the dialtone. And then I take out my pad, and write:
Dialtone romance love bondage porn crack hardcore
And then I feel okay again. At least I’m a lyrical genius. One of the various hangers on comes up to me, some asexual psycho with tattoos and a beer gut, chains and leather and piercings.
“You’re on in ten.”
I can hear only the thrum, thrum of the support act.
“Who’s supporting again?” I ask.
The dude looks at me. Shakes his head. “Why?”
“Fair enough,” I sigh, and wander to the dressing room, where Chris is banging some fifteen year old twins who asked for his autograph.
“Did daddy do this to you? Did daddy love you like I love you?”
They are both crying. I open a beer. “On in ten,” I say, watching him bang them. Tom is lying on the couch, tapping a beat with his sticks.
One of the girls squirms free and Tom clips her hard around the head with his stick. I smile, poke her in the eye until it is bloodshot, mesmerised at my own power. Chris starts to finger fuck the other one until she understands.
“What are we, ugh, opening with?” he asks me.
“How about Trenchcoat Mafia?”
“How does that one, ugh, go again?”
“Duuude,” I sigh. “I realise you’re a cool guy and everything, but you know how it goes man. A, A minor, B, D sharp. You know, ‘fuck the pigs and shoot your parents, stop for dinner at a Wimpy, fuck the waitress, masturbate over some children.”
“Catchy,” the girl grins, her bloodshot eye weeping.
“Ooh,” I sigh, “a live one.” I kick her in the stomach, trying to cause internal damage. The gig goes okay, lots of moshing and Chris only forgets the parts to three songs. The crowd started a little fire at the end, and I threw a pigs head at some perverted old man who was only here to pick up a fifteen year old, or something equally as pathetic.
Later we are snorting MDMA at a strip club and getting a lot of attention because we’re all smoking cigarettes, and the Northern pimp who owns the joint is threatening to kick seven shades of shit out of us. On and on my wonderful life goes, and even later the police call us up over alleged rape and assault charges on the two fifteen year olds. Jones does what he does best, which is pay off the charges and buy us even more notoriety than the Jonathan Ross thing.
“And so what do you say to your critics, of which,” she smiles, crossing her legs, pushing the tape recorder forward, “you do have quite a few?”
I light a cigarette.
“I’m a satirist,” I sigh, “I don’t think people should take what we say in our music literally.”
“And that leads me on to my next question,” she smiles, trying not to cough from the smoke that is fast filling up the room. I’m on cigarette forty in an hour.
“Some of your fans were recently arrested for:”
“Yes, I know, firebombing Jessie J’s house. I don’t feel this is something I can take credit for.”
“But on your Twitter you said-”
“I think some of our fans should firebomb Jessie J’s house. Yes, but I was being ironic.”
“Where the literal and the actual meanings are opposed.”
“And…what do you..”
“I meant that Jessie J is not a dumb, bendy fame whore with a shit voice who deserves to be firebombed. She’s the voice of her generation and should be given an honorary Oscar for services to mankind. Oh, uh, womankind. I’m a feminist.”
The journalist notes this down. It’s funny to me that a year ago I would have called the journalist a girl, or a fit girl, or beautiful, or fuckable, or marriage material. Now she’s “the journalist.” When the fifteenth or so bitch throws themselves sexually at you, it certainly changes your perception on sexual dynamics. It also makes you agree with John Lennon. Nothing is real. Even if he was a Commie son of a bitch. I used to think that Liberals should be lined up against the wall and shot. Now I just think they should be strapped in a cinema and forced to watch Andy Warhol’s Empire State. That’d sort the wheat from the chaff.
“That’s interesting,” the journalist says, and I realise that my little internal monologue was said on tape.
“But,” I sigh, not caring, “you are a good looking journalist if that helps.”
I cough up a lump of bile.
“Do you want some crack?” I ask.
“What do you want? To marry a footballer?”
She giggles nervously.
“You what, you don’t want to?”
“But think of all the attention you’d get.”
I stub out my cigarette and light another.
“Do you think Marilyn Manson is your primary influence?”
“Oh, back on with the work. Yeah, maybe. Don’t know.”
“Is that a yes?”
“I guess my primary influence is getting blow jobs from stupid girls. Like you.”
She looks at me with a look of pure hate. I smile, blow smoke in her face.
“Do you enjoy hurting people?”
“People? Or women?”
“Do you get off on hurting women?” She asks, tears welling in her eyes.
“Are you a fame whore?”
She says nothing. I feel sated. I’ve reached her sore spot. I would be pleased, if this were the first honest interview I’d done, but I’ve done a million, fucked a million, made a million, I’m a legend.
It says, “You’re twenty seven, right?”
“How old are you?”
“It’s a dangerous age to be. Look at Amy Winehouse.”
“Crack is a dangerous thing.”
“Look at Jim Morrison. Look at Kurt Cobain.”
“Look into my eyes,” I smile, removing my Wayfarers and say: “Look at your life, and then look at mine. I may not be talented, I may not be influential, but I am rich. And I could fuck you if you I wanted to.”
“And what if I wanted you to?” She asks.
“At least you’d be telling the truth for once.”
She removes her top. “You have pretty good tits,” I smile.
“Just do it and let’s be done with it.”
“But don’t you get it?” I almost yell this.
“What?” She is removing her skirt.
“I’ll only enjoy it if you tell me something you never told anybody else.”
“I was sexually abused as a child by my uncle.”
I start to laugh.
“I once fingered my sister.”
Tears are rolling down my cheeks.
“I lost my virginity when I was six.”
“Rock and roll,” I sigh, grabbing the tape recorder and smashing it against the wall.
“Hate me.” She is naked now.
“Make sure I will never forget this.”
“I intend to.”
“They always say that, don’t they?” She smiles, opening her legs.
“You have a nice pussy.”
Tom hasn’t been enjoying himself. I tried to tell him that we basically made it, and it won’t last forever, and girls did dig him, even though I was the genius of the band, he could still fuck the run off.
“Was this all this was about?” he asked, unscrewing a Becks.
“What else is there?”
“A message? A point?”
Chris and I crack up laughing.
“You should let Tombo do some interviews on his own,” Chris says.
“His dick isn’t big enough,” I grin.
“I measured,” Tom sighs. “I’m proportional.”
“When are we on tonight?” Chris asks.
“Whenever, whoever,” I reply.
“Can’t hurry love,” Chris smiles.
“Can’t you just enjoy the process?” I ask Tom. “Why does there always have to be a message? We made it. This is it. This is the answer. We can fuck as many girls, boys or children as we want and get away with it for at least another six months. There is no message. There is no point.”
“Hardcore,” Tom sighs, necking the bottle.
Jones enters the hotel room, smiles benevolently.
“Hi gang!” he says, coke residue around his nostrils.
“Hi cowboy,” I grin.
“We’re doing America in September, coincide with the ten year anniversary of 9/11. I want you to do Leno and say that Al Qaeda are your biggest influence.”
Chris lights up his crack pipe.
“What do you get out of all this?” Tom asks Jones.
“Money,” Jones says.
I am getting mildly annoyed with all this 'nigger' controversy.
That middle class white boy nigger who got nigger dissed by that faggot hairdresser transsexual cunt is now an international celebrity on account of the fact he didn't have the cojones to belt the hater who called his chick a 'nigger bitch' in the head with a bottle, instead doing what all middle class white boy niggers do, which is write an article in the Daily Mail about how they rose above the evil statement, and that they don't mind being called a negro or coloured, they're completely un-politically correct, all their best friends are highly controversial, but just don't call me a nigger, because hundreds and hundreds of years ago black people picked cotton, and it's the most offensive word of ALL TIME, including kike, wop, greaser, nonce, rapist, child skull-fucker, junkie, faggot, queer, nigger, and bollocks. Wait. What was I saying? Nigger, please. SHUT up and pick some cotton or something, and suddenly I realise I haven't thought these words, but that I am yelling them out on stage, and I've actually managed to render the entire O2
And then the bottles start flying.
I was going to be a great artist.
"Check check, one two."
I asked Jones to get me a carved down human incisor to use as a guitar pick.
"How are the levels?"
"Can I uh, get a little bit more snare in my headphones?"
Little joke. Smoking is Cool fucking hates Eminem.
"Are we trim coordinated?" Chris yells, working the angle.
"What you need?" A roadie yells back.
"Something black on the outside, pink on the inside, and totally greeen...."
Tom is playing a few blues rhythms, a few rolls, a few high hats, the intro to When the Levee Breaks. Linkin Park went on C.B.S today to say they are morally opposed to us playing L.A. We uh, totally care. A few other pussy metal bands have joined in the protest. My Chemical Romance wrote an anti-Smoking is Cool protest song they uploaded free onto their MySpace, with Lars Ulrich and the rest of the fags from Metallica called "We Don't Agree With Smoking in the Boys Room" and it's already had about seven or eight thousand hits. Chris (half) jokingly said we should buy some guns and shoot the audience, or at least some of the frat boy types who've just bought tickets to beat on us, so we can fuck their girlfriends afterwards and then go to the funerals and dig up their bodies and something or other, I forget, cos Jones has kept us all doped on Meth since we got here, and my cock has shrunk to the size of a walnut if you want to hear it.
"Check check, three four."
"How's the lighting?" I say, coughing up something, blood, whatever.
"You wearing clown paint today?" Chris asks me, "you should you know."
"Uh, to cover up the herpes? I don't know, roll with it man. We're goths, right?"
"We're slipstream harcore emo," I sigh, remembering the contract we signed for marketing purposes. There's talk of merchandising a la Kiss, little Jeremy dolls, little knives and Tech 9s and me wearing a ripped T-shirt with SHOOT UP THE SCHOOL. "They'll buy anything, kids today," Jones told me when we looked at the prototypes. His dream is for us to do the soundtrack to a video game on the PS3 for Rockstar Games, "COLUMBINE WAS FUNNY". Pretty self-explanatory, except he's waiting for 3D porn to really kick in. We already signed over the rights for THE SORROWS OF YOUNG WERTHER to play on the intro for seven hundred trillion kazillion dollars. Start tripping, think of some stupid shit Tom was going on about in the changing room, something about being on the plane, listening to a DAB Digital radio picking up Kerrang! radio from Middlesex while flying over the heartland. All these songs, all these awful prog rock and heavy metal oldies, all these songs from bands who thought being hardcore was getting a Hot Carl on a sex swing and dying in your own vomit after a twenty seven hour coke binge. These songs were flying at us, and Tom was manic, said: "You know but what if and if what if somebody was listening to these songs, yeah, and they'd like back in the day made a mix CD or tape or whatever of all these songs...all these songs in the same order...wouldn't...I mean..." He was choking back tears, "and they realised after sixteen songs that all of these songs...in the same order...they'd recorded this before...all before...they'd heard all of these songs in the same order as it...it's playing now...I mean...would that mean..."
Chris was actually interested in what the little sociopath had to say (what can I say, we're all sociopaths) and he said: "Dude, for once, I'm interested.."
"would that mean that there was...like...God or some shit...or something...would that mean anything?"
Eventually he started to hyperventilate so we got him some oxygen, valium, whatever, and we all forgot, and I'm remembering it now, and Tom kicks into our great "masterpiece" THE SORROWS OF YOUNG WERTHER and I heard from Jones that Bret Easton Ellis would be at the bar at the hotel today and I should talk to him about something, try and get a photo, y'know, for some purpose, like an album, Facebook, MySpace, something to show my respect.
"Lock and load," I sighed, and now I start to sing, these words that meant something when I wrote them, but are just words now, could be Klingon, German, and I'm singing “I no longer feel the need to explain myself and I don’t owe anybody anything,” and I've got it down to a fine art now, it's just like turning on a light switch. I'm a professional musician in the world's most notorious band, and that's the way it was always going to be, I never had a choice.
If there's one (okay, two) things wrong with The Amber State, just off Sunset, it's one: everybody's too damn pretty and I ain't going swimming when there's cameras (of which there are hundreds, and I mean cameramen, not English style CCTV spy cameras) waiting for a glimpse of a pasty white English black metal goth looking miserable next to the beautiful people, and two: it's difficult to throw a TV out of the window when it's a three thousand (plus) HD3D TV attached to the wall with hydraglue. Not for want of trying though, Jones even helpfully brought in some roadies, the big, drug dealing, Union buster types, priming us with the sixteen year olds and the crack and even blowtorches and things to make for damn sure we make some kind of impact on this haunted ghost town. The South Park gang are downstairs in one of the million bars (I swear it's like The Overlook Hotel from The Shining, just full of 'celebrities') and as promised, THE American Psycho himself, Bret Easton Ellis (although I've been warned he's not much to look at) is meeting with some Execs to try and push the rights for Imperial Bedrooms, his go-nowhere Hollywood Holocaust horror novel, a sort of rich people's social realist bunch of I'm repeating myself twenty five years later sort of thing, and word on the boulevard is he's not having much luck. Some movie, FRIG FEST FIVE, is turning heads, however, there's rumours that people were human sacrificed for actual real on set.
It was three forty two.
I had set my alarm for three forty three, so I was making good time.
The only problem was the ghost, but hopefully since it was almost light, it should have been okay.
I first saw the ghost when I was seven, shortly before I started my book.
It wasn't that I saw it, necessarily, just that I knew something was there.
And then I heard a kind of...whispering.
So I had to sleep with music on. Which covered my parents' room, so I couldn't hear them fucking. I was pleased in a way that they did, I found condoms in my Dad's drawer, and even stole one to try it on when I was...but anyway. I was nine when I saw them hard fucking on the balcony in Ibiza. I walked into the other room, saw Billy and started laughing, and then I realised I was crying, and then I felt dizzy, and then Mum came out, smiling, and tanned, and I remember I watched a lot of cartoons by myself for the rest of the holiday. I got a bit of a tan. They converted the loft so Dad could have his model train set in my old bedroom. My new room was smaller, and the roof was lopsided, and it overlooked the garden and I found myself looking out sometimes, but it freaked me out because there was always something out there and I couldn't work out what it was.
Three forty three.
Pressed the buzzer to turn it off. Made damn sure the thing was off. I only had a cheap alarm clock. I wanted the football one that you throw at the wall to turn off, but Mum said no, because the one I eventually wound up with was three pounds cheaper.
I had to set the video that night when Dad was out of the room.
They said in this book I had once that this was one of the most notorious films of its time. There were calls to have it banned. I got dressed, and then shuddered, because the ghost was there now. I could hear it, but I heard it then often, and so far it only came to me in dreams, fangs mainly, and a death face pale like a full moon with eyes that don't look human.
Mr. Craig was telling us the day before that night in Form Period that there were these two murderers, a man and a woman who used to kill and rape children and cut them up and send the tape recorded screams to their parents and then bury their bodies. Mr. Craig taught History and Latin. We were doing the Romans.
Down. On the landing. Billy's room to the left.
An arc of light from the bathroom where I dream sometimes that body parts are buried. And where sometimes it must still live.
A whisper, but focus. Walked quickly but not loud, and I was downstairs. Easy!
Down to the second landing.
A corridor in darkness that always seemed darker when no one else was awake. But I was always afraid anyway. There are just different gradients of fear for me.
Downstairs now, and this was a difficult part, because the ghost was always in the space under the stairs until I switched the lights on, and it was too early for that.
In the kitchen. I could turn the light on, momentarily freaked because it could be...no. Warmth. Fucking finally, a safe place. Now I could enjoy myself. I could make a coffee. I could have some Rich Roast Kenco with milk and sugar, and then I was almost okay, because all I had to do now was get the video and take it into the other room, because there were things behind the chairs in the main room, where Mum and Dad watched TV. My TV room, mine and Billy's, where the computer was, had a settee that backed onto the wall, and I knew every inch of this room, and I was willing to fight in there. I kept a bat in here, and I would fight for this space.
I switched on the TV, slightly scared that a demon face would meet me, warped and grinning and bug eyed and blistered and slavering and sneering and talking in a high pitched voice too...nah. I was good. This was gonna be wicked. I timed it so I could watch the movie and then the sun would come up and then I would have achieved this.
The tape was rewound. Fast forward the adverts.
THIS FILM HAS BEEN RATED U SUITABLE FOR ALL
White Heat. Jimmy Cagney.
Made it ma...top of the world!!!!
To quote that famous movie, as far back as I can remember I always wanted to be a gangster. And now, twenty seven years old, I very totally am. Even though Pornhub.com and Rotten.com (who both dissed us HARD) would maybe disagree, every member of Smoking Is Cool (praised in NME as "the first real breakthrough metal act from the suburbs since Symposium") are not merely "beautiful" (read: anti-everything) rebel rockstars with a number one album in the charts and a single (we chose THE SORROWS OF YOUNG WERTHER) at number six with a rocket up its arse, we are total gangsters. We feel it. We know it. Something changed for us this year. No amount of smack and starlet blowjobs can detract from the fact that we are tied together to something, something irrevocable, something that means we are born again hard. We are backstage at the main stage and Chris is yelling something to a roadie, something like: "She was at least fifteen, chico," and we all laugh, cos we know this girl has probably got pictures up on her Facebook getting facefucked by our new bassist, and even if she is underage, there's only a twelve or thirteen year difference, so it genuinely doesn't matter. And anyway, we can handle the fucking police. Chris fucked two girls with a rolled up telephone book then uploaded the video to their parents' Facebook. He was the perfect replacement for Neil. Chris has the fucking emotional intelligence of a spider.
She looks about sixteen, but is presumably legal, a green mask of duct tape on her lips with childish lips drawn on. The guy in the doctor’s greens is squeezing her clitoris, her legs pulled and chained apart, her arms pinned above her head.
“Yes, now what I need to do now, is to apply pressure with, yes, good girl, with the ball of my thumb to the vaginal lips, yes..”
And he takes out a clitoral vibrator from a small doctor’s case, and the cameraman slides around to close up on her eyes, wide in terrified ecstasy.
“Now, the doctor needs to apply the clitoral vibrator onto you until you tell me that it hurts. Okay? Just say stop.”
He presses the switch. For the next three minutes (I come after sixteen seconds and sit there in sweat and semen and dull anger) he applies the clitoral vibrator to her.
“Okay, good. So you didn’t say stop, so I’ll continue, yes?”
My cock is still rock hard, but raw with constant masturbation.
Eventually the girl just straight out pisses gloopy female ejaculation and
I start to cry in a psychopathic bout of self-loathing.
Another hotel. However, not a bad one. We don't do bad hotels. Every hotel we've stayed in has been, admittedly, exactly what a rockstar would want. You can't throw TVs out of the window in Berlin, not even in the Carlotta Hohenfels where The Rolling Stones (allegedly) performed a Gnostic Black Mass using genuine pages from the genuine Necronomicon, causing several undead demons to rise and cause havoc amongst some of the straights in the Freemason game room. Anyway. Smoking Is Cool brings its own ghosts. After the drift, boredom, drugs, sex and glamour of L.A, we're still on permanent comedown mode and bullshitting, playing Goldeneye on the Wii and drinking light beers while considering a gang bang, or something. I've decided that Florence's major problem was her emotional immaturity, another beautiful white woman with the sensitivity of a nine year old, a Lana Turner for the info generation. What is it they say about blondes?
The song...I wish I was a little bit taller...I wish I was a baller... playing out of the surround sound system. Hmm. Retro. Manager on the phone to New York in his room, moving, grooving, pushing, easing, we'll be playing the shit out of the gig tonight, soundcheck in a few hours. Drifting. Narcotic sleep, the ticket that exploded. Ideas for songs: A man jumping off a skyscraper intending to land on his girlfriend screaming for him to step back...step back...the stage awaits, another song. Another moment. Tears in rain. Shouldn't have done that ket before. Tom has just shot Chris in the head with a Magnum. Giggling.
"Hey chico," Chris laughs, "just for that I'm gonna fuck your sister."
And he could, too...
The Smoking Is Cool South Park is airing tonight. Tweet leaks tell us that it's gonna ruin our career. I'm bemused by this. Since I haven't really done any hallucinogenic drugs since the Vodaphone gig, I'm wondering how much they could possibly know, and wondering how badly I actually pissed off Trey Parker when I offered to play Chef for a nominal fee and a co-write credit. I was being half serious, and I guess he guessed that. He looked like he wanted to get away from me, looked like I looked like yet another half serious half psycho emo afterbirth of the Columbine massacre. I thought having Cartman and me singing THE SORROWS OF YOUNG WERTHER to President Obama while sucking each other off would have been, if not funny, then fairly contentious. Sheeit. I thought they loved Monty Python. We're all in Chris's room getting ready for the FRIG FEST FIVE premiere, some torture porn epic that won acclaim at Cannes or something and I'm fucked, been drinking since whenever, and Jones I think told me earlier that he'd bankroll a further five albums if I had a swastika tattooed on my forehead, since if I didn't get shot (or even if I did) it would be seen as even more Dada than Gaga. Instead we're all going as Luftwaffe pilots, even though Manson did that shit years ago, except we actually look Ayran, and we're actually all pretty fucking right wing, except for Chris, who's pretty laissez faire and so therefore counts on a technicality, snort another line off some chick who's moaning and the video camera has been set up for days, weeks, fuck knows what they know or if it matters, or if she can even speak English anyway. Probably. All Germans can speak English. She's pretty hot apart from her mascara, which has run from how much she's been weeping. We've kept her tied up in the corner for a while now, burning her with cigarettes, threatening to carve our names in her. Chris told her it would make her famous, told her when (or if) she survived this, she could sell the book for millions. I was pretty pissed off at him for that. He knows writing is a sore spot for me. I mean, I could have been a writer. Chris kept pushing, saying shit like, "hey baby, you think you could outwrite this piece of shit?"
"I'm the fucking singer motherfucker," I said, fronting him. "You think anybody would give a fuck if the fucking bassist took a fucking header out of the fucking window?"
Chris lit a cigarette (which he would later stub out on the girl's cheek in a pentagram) and smiled. "You're the voice of a generation, Jeremy," he said, "you know I'm just, uh, jealous of your, uh, talent."
"Whatever." And then: "Can we get some fresh meat in here? This bitch is starting to smell."
"Our music transcends boundaries," Chris sighed. "It transcends class, colour, genre, money, space, time."
"I fucking hate this," I said.
I said nothing, went to my room. And then I called up Jones (two doors down) and said: "Dude, I want to play Russian Roulette tonight, during the South Park thing, on camera."
"Wowzer," he replied, and then said: "I know some people. It'll get done, honey. And to be honest, I think it's the right move."
I drank some juice and looked for some alcohol. I knew if I fell asleep I'd never wake up, so I've been drinking since whenever and we're still in Chris's room, and the girl has passed out, and we've all copied Marilyn Manson and gangfucked her a few more times (Chris has the biggest cock, Tom has the smallest) and we don't care anymore about anything, not even South Park, all we want is a way out.
In the limo back to the Carlotta Hohenfels. FRIG FEST FIVE premiere went okay. Jones sorted us out with some smack just so long as we shot up when a cameraman was near. We almost got arrested (twice) and some liberal types were throwing bottles at us before we entered the cinema, some arthouse place, special guests included George A. Romero (who blanked us, he's Jewish, maybe) Harry Knowles, some other fat pieces of shit. The movie was a cross between HOSTEL, CHOPPER, BRONSON, A CLOCKWORK ORANGE, SAW IV, MANHUNTER, NEW YORK RIPPER, HALLOWEEN II, DRACULA, ROGER AND ME, BLAIR WITCH PROJECT, ZOMBIE FLESH EATERS, WOLF CREEK, SCARY MOVIE 3, BENNY'S VIDEO, FUNNY GAMES, THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST, ZODIAC, FRENZY, about a million others. I've started seeing patterns where there are none. I've started seeing vampires. I've started feeling like a genuine artist. I've started feeling like pissing on Sandro Beyer's grave was a good thing. I'm hip, I'm too cool for school. Fuckit. Good heroin. Whatever. We drive through the streets of the city, stuff happens, I notice nothing but my own demons. I try and think that if I ever get to prison, get anywhere, maybe I could write something meaningful. Jones starts to pump THE SORROWS OF YOUNG WERTHER loud, I start to cry a little. Rock and roll.
The girl is dead. Unconscious, happy to be here, the dead only know it is better to be alive. Or do they? How would I know.
Tom looks uneasy. Chris holds the gun in his hand. South Park has killed us. Is in the process. Cartman singing THE SORROWS OF YOUNG WERTHER while jacking off over his own reflection, dressed as me dressed as my mother with a dildo in his arse.
"Why?" Tom asks.
"Don't ask questions," I say.
"I don't want to," Tom says.
"It's Russian Roulette," Chris says.
Chris spins the barrel. "Do we need anything?"
"Like what?" I ask, lighting a cigarette. The girl is bleeding.
"If you don't, I will," Chris says.
"Do what?" Tom says, tears in his eyes.
"Fine, have it your way," I say, grabbing the gun. I put it under my chin. Chris is laughing. Tom is looking desperate.
"I'm super seriously you guys," Cartman says as he jacks himself. "I no longer feel the need to explain myself and I don't owe anybody anything!"
"Fuckit," I say, and grinning, pull the trigger.
You know how they always say your life flashes before your eyes the moment before you die? Well, they're right...