The green glow of the digital clock seemed to blaze with intense ferocity into the void of the frigid darkness that cloaked the tiled bathroom. Its light reflected off the pastel porcelain squares like the emenation of a fading ghost, staining the cold gray of darkness with vivid splatters of emerald. The clock sat upon the sink accompanied by a clutter of soaps, lotions, combs, and other hygienic tools; the bathroom was still, as was the entire small, sun-flooded suite. A breeze wafted through the open balcony doors, filling the curtains into billowing clouds of ether and sending several white papers spiraling to drift upon the well-kept carpet. The bedroom was rather neatly arranged, strung only with several articles of clothing awaiting seats in the laundry hamper. All was still and lifeless under the blanket of silence which draped over the entirety of the suite...
All save one tiny disturbance.
Then it was followed by...
Whump! Swish! Clink! THUD! CLONK! BLAM! BOOM!!
“Ah~!” a gasp sounded as Sariel, a lavender-eyed young man with sleep-tossed streams of metallic periwinkle azure tresses pouring in fine rivulets down his head, finally slid from his sleep upon his work desk to land unceremoniously upon the floor along with a fine entanglement of other desktop accessories. “Oh, dam-- G’ah! Ow! SHIT, dammit, what the hell..!?”
Rubbing his head as he sluggishly untangled himself from the power cords of his equipment, Sariel proceeded to reorganize his desk with an irritated groan, bending down to first collect the leaves of paper he had printed out with the measures of music he had been working on the previous night and then throw them to a nearby corner while he moved on to replace his sound equipment back on his desk, making sure they were in working order before he went to pick up his laptop which had landed upon the pleasant area of Sariel’s head as it fell after him.
He planted the last instrument back in its place with a grumpy snort, his lavender eyes sparked with the cranky light of a lousy awakening. Once he was done rearranging, the young man leaned his weight on one arm against the desktop, using his other hand to rub the groggy sleep haze from his eyes.
“Fucking pieces of shit falling on me,” Sariel grumbled, still sore from the rather painful impact of the laptop’s weight crushing his skull as he shuffled about irritably for any loose sheets of music.
Sariel still had yet to melt out of his grumpy mood and remember that today was a rather important day for himself as an ambitious violinist and his two associates: Isaiah, his best friend since their high school years and accompanying cello player in their duet, and Obadiah, their oftentimes-schizophrenic manager. It was important because today was the day when representatives from a major recording company were coming to their studio for an interview, a major step for Sariel’s group to very possibly finally find a major contracted career with the music industry, and their schedule had been set at 11:00 A.M.
Obadiah glanced anxiously toward the clock mounted on the wall perhaps every thirty seconds, waiting, waiting for Sariel to arrive for the upcoming interview. The chocolate-haired manager had been expecting Sariel’s arrival ever since 10:30 A.M. and resorted to pacing by now, wringing his sweat-slicked hands nervously as he tried to comfort himself by assuring himself that Sariel was never, ever late.
However, the assurance being far from true, Obadiah could not calm himself. He paced like a madman and started muttering gibberish worries to himself. He had gone through so much trouble to get Sariel and Isaiah all the way here! How could Sariel just blow it for both of them and not show up on this day of important days?? At least Isaiah was here. Good old Isaiah. He was always reliable, although he sometimes - or rather always - stuck up for Sariel and forced Obadiah to apologize to his friend every time they got into a fix due to Sariel’s oftentimes naive actions.
“Heh.. heh heh heh.. Where is he..?” Obadiah asked in a semi-mad cackle, his eyes edging on insanity from this torturous wait perhaps for the impossible. At that question, his shrunken irises moved to settle his gaze on Isaiah, who was seated calmly upon a folding chair with his legs crossed. “He’s coming.. right? You know him. Sariel’s your best buddy. He’s coming. You know he’s going to show up any minute, don’t you? You’re just enjoying this wait that’s just driving me INSANE!!!”
Obadiah seemed to nearly pop a vessel at his last statement, and that was when Isaiah finally decided it was time to pay attention to his manager, arching an eyebrow toward him as he uncrossed his arms from his chest and spoke.
“I don’t know, actually, Obadiah. I thought he knew we had an important day today, but--” Isaiah shrugged “--knowing Sariel, anything could happen. He could still be asleep with his alarm clock ripped out of his wall for all we know..”
That was not what Obadiah wanted to hear.
A nanosecond later, Isaiah soon found himself alone in a room with a plastic, flat, little man-figure twirling around airily as if he were a dangling paper doll billowing in the gentle summer breeze. Isaiah tried only to ignore his schizophrenic manager and sighed, leaning forward on the table upon his elbows, his chin cradled in his palms.
Sariel.. Where the fuck are you, man? How the hell could you forget a time like this?
“Ugh..” Sariel grunted as he finally managed to restart the power of the equipment which made up his work area. Sweeping a stressed hand through his silvery hair, the young man heaved a sigh as he glanced about his small suite.
Something did not feel right, as if he was forgetting something. However, he could not quite place a finger on what. He tried staring mindlessly into the glow of his laptop screen, but all that helped in doing was make his eyes ache. Something important was missing from his memory and he could not seem to recall what it was for the life of him.
Why had he stayed up so late working yesterday, anyways?
Sariel tilted his head up to stare at the ceiling, inhaling deeply, then closed his pastel eyes to try and recall his day yesterday after he got home.
Isaiah had dropped him off with his bike after their rehearsal. Violin in hand and music sheets in another, Sariel had made his way up the sixteen flights of stairs - he could still remember complaining bitterly to himself about the apartment manager being too cheap to install an elevator - and once he arrived at the door to his suite, he remembered being extremely hungry and damning himself for not trying to hook a meal from Isaiah. Then he soon learned that he needed to make a sorely-required grocery shopping trip for his refrigerator was bare save a few cans of beer, a molding sandwich from last week, and a half carton of Frappuccino ice cream in the freezer.
His mother had been right. The life of a musician was committing oneself to starvation. He hated it when she was right about everything!
Too lazy to head out again to buy any of his necessary foods, Sariel thus had satisfied himself by grabbing the ice cream and eating it with a large spoon. He was most certainly not going to climb up the sixteen flights of stairs again with a massive load of groceries by himself! That was going to have to wait until he could drag both Isaiah and Obadiah up to his suite and help him with his errands.
Hmm.. so what else did I do after I got home? Sariel thought to himself. It couldn’t have just been eating ice cream and working..
Then, it hit him.
Twenty minutes after digging into the carton, his stomach had begun to revolt, and he had spent the rest of his night either at his work or in the bathroom. The evil ice cream had decided to go bad on him, and it was only then he realized exactly how old it was.
“Oh!” Sariel exclaimed, slapping his fist into his palm. “I remember now! I need that pink stomach medicine stuff!”
He then glanced to his clock that was supposed to be perched on his desk, but blinked when he saw that it had been torn out of the electric outlet in the wall. Sariel had, in his ever-restless sleep, somehow gotten it into his hands during the night and ripped it right out of the wall. The clock’s face was blank, but Sariel shrugged and quickly grabbed a binder to tie his shoulder-length hair back and ran into the bathroom to splash some water on his face, brush his teeth, and fix up his clothes before grabbing his keys and headed out the door for the nearest corner store for his gastronomic needs.
The clock in the bathroom flashed 10:58 A.M. If only Sariel remembered his cell phone...
Obadiah had nearly chewed through the entire pen he had in his hands as he waited for Sariel to pick up his phone, his own cell fused to his ear. He had sweated through his entire white shirt underneath his suit and he was shuddering uncontrollably, still twitching every now and then with a mad cackle, his irises shrunken from his stress.
And while Obadiah was killing himself over Sariel’s absence, Isaiah had other things in mind: either how he was going to wring Sariel‘s skinny little neck to a thread or worry over what might be wrong for Sariel not to contact them. Could it have been Isaiah’s fault that Sariel was not here now? He knew how forgetful his friend could be. Hell, back in high school, Sariel sometimes even forgot where the men’s bathroom was and Isaiah always had to remind him. Yet even knowing that about his friend, Isaiah had himself neglected to remind Sariel of their big day today. It was very possible that he had forgotten. All Sariel was ever able to truly remember were his friends and his music: things he loved.
Then, finally, Isaiah stood up and turned to Obadiah, who had crumpled to the ground in sobbing despair, saying to him simply:
“..Cancel the interview, Obadiah.”
At that, the manager went entirely white and still, his eyes no more than tiny dots on his face behind his glasses, and he asked in dry chokes:
“Wh-What..? C-Cancel..? Do you.. know.. how long.. it will take.. to get.. another one..? Do you know what time it is??”
Obadiah leapt up and began spinning about madly like an insane top, moisture beads flying from his twirls as he cried out hysterically.
“YOU DON’T JUST CANCEL INTERVIEWS WITH HUGE FIRMS LIKE THAT TWENTY SECONDS BEFORE YOUR APPOINTMENT!!!!!!”
Isaiah merely watched his manager break out into spastic hysteria, his face calm, then he got up and slumped against the wall to stare out the window, the sunlight filtering in casting long shadows from his dark emerald hair as his amber eyes squinted partly shut. He crossed his arms loosely across his chest and sighed, lifting a leg to press his heel into the wall.
“..We’ll just wait for our next chance, Obi. I don’t care how long we have to wait. We’re nothing without Sariel here. He’s the driving force behind us: him, his music. I just play what he writes. Just tell them that we had some emergency that came up unexpectedly. They wouldn’t care. It’s our loss; not theirs.”
I'll add the following chapters in seperate posts.. o.o