3: So Far Away, Always There

As the following weeks and months passed, the boy had nothing to look forward to. He wasn't confident in anything other than who he was at that Sunday show. It was his home away from home. It was his only passion for years. Now he had to wait till his fathers band played at places he would be allowed to be. This happened very rarely and when it did, he didn't know anyone there.

While at school, he would sit alone and day dream. He would write songs in his head and most never made it to paper because he didn't believe anyone would listen to them anyways. Every time he closed his eyes he would dream of being on stage performing and there would be thousands of people cheering his name.

Every time he looked to the front row in his daydream, he would see the people from those Sunday nights, and right in the middle of it all, he always saw the blue eyed girl with her shy smile, but as he opened his eyes, reality would hit and he was forced to go back to the day to day. This went on for over a year, and he began to get comfortable with the idea that they would always be silly dreams.

His mother changed jobs not long after his fathers band left and she was working at a smaller dive bar down the road from it. She'd gotten the boy a job there as a cook. He'd work every day after work and most weekends as well.

It wasn't big enough to host bands, but one summer they had an old man who played guitar and rambled alot as he played some folk type original songs. He was an old drifter and ran off of one speaker and his guitar looked like it had been through a grinder a few times. Turned out he lived in his van and traveled around doing these little shows to get by. He called it "the only way to freedom."

He wasn't very good, but he would invite others to play as an open mic. The boy's dad decided to bring a guitar and he would play a few songs. The boy had never seen his father play an acoustic guitar without a band before. He found the solitude of the arrangements very captivating and felt more depth in the connection that was made with the small audience.

"Play One" the old drifter said as he noticed the boys intense interest.

"I...I can't" the boy responded as he went back to playing with the ice in his drink.

"Do one of your original songs," the boy's father said as he handed him the guitar.

The boy didn't think he was good enough to have his father ask him point blank to play one of his songs. He didn't even know his father could hear him practicing in the other room at home. He would get tunnel vision and hours would pass by without him noticing as he tried to figure out what the next chord should be in his song that he never intended to play in public. This moment left the boy proud and in shock at the same time.

He took the guitar and went to the cheap bar stool sitting by the far wall. It wasn't a stage, but it was the stage area. The boy sat down and looked at the ten to twelve people sitting down watching intently. He felt like he should say something, but didn't know what to say, so he closed his eye's and took a deep breath.

When he opened his eyes, he saw the same people still looking at him waiting for him to do something. Some were eating their food and a couple were back in the corner playing a lottery machine. None of them seemed invested in him. It felt like they were watching because he was there, but he didn't feel like anyone was watching because it was him. It was discouraging but also took the edge off enough that he found some words to say before he played.

"Umm....this is a song I wrote for a girl at school. She doesn't know it's for her and she's never heard it, but she said the words were good when she read them." The boy felt like he was rambling and didn't even know if his words could be heard through the microphone.

He was shaking as his hands got in position for the first chord and he worried he'd forget the words to the song he wrote himself. His throat was tight and his stomach was turning. His hands felt a chill as they grew damp with sweat. He could hear the old furnace kick in as the room fell completely silent. He closed his eye's again and strummed the first chord.

As the first chords were played, it wasn't the girl from school that came to mind. Once again he thought of her. The blue eyed girl that thought he was the world and he realized in that moment, that his own song described her thoughts and feelings towards him better than his own feelings towards this girl he barely knew at school.

🎶The day went by as normal

everything was going good

went to my normal classes

all of which I understood

then she came up to me

with a new look in her eye

I could tell something was different

when we hugged she told me why

She was Eye to Eye

with the perfect guy

who took her breath away

I just stood there dumbfound

Didn't know what I should say

So I told her I was happy for her

Her joy I could see

But why can't she be

Eye to Eye with me.

She talked about him more

from his hair down to his shoes

I tried not to show her

my world was torn in two

then a stranger came behind her

I did not recognize

and when he took her in his arms

her words went through my mind

She was eye to eye

with the perfect guy

who took her breath away

she did not realize

how hard that was to take

but I truly am so happy for her

though true I just can't see

why can't she be

eye to eye with me

I see her eye's of hazel green

capturing me,

a spell in my dreams

why can't she by eye to eye

I could take her to the sky

why can't she be eye to eye

With me🎶

When the song was done, he didn't see the green eyed girl from school he had written the song about. Instead he saw the blue eyed girl that believed in the boy with his guitar and a desire to sing. She was everything he wanted in a fan. He didn't know if he'd ever see her again, but he wanted to show her that her belief wasn't misplaced if he did seen her again.

The next day, he went to the music store looking for whatever he needed to do an open mic like the old drifter did. He asked one of the workers for help, but had no idea how to ask for what he wanted.

"Well we haven't looked this one over yet, but a guy just traded this all for a couple guitars." He said looking at the teenage boy and noticing his confusion at what he was looking at.

"Hold on," said the boy as he called his father.

The boy was nervous about asking for help. He felt like he should know more about this and had a hard time admitting he had no idea where to start. It was an embarrassing call to make, but he knew he could blow a lot of money if he didn't do it right.

"Dad, can you come to the music store and look at this system? I want to do shows like that guy at work does."

The boys father rushed over and looked everything over. They tested everything. It had 2 main speaker, some crappy home made monitors, a power supply, 16 channel board, microphones and all the cables needed. They tested everything and what didn't work, they fixed so it would be show ready. The boy payed $1000 dollars for a used PA and had the start to what he wanted.

As the boy loaded everything up his dreams changed before his eyes. He no longer saw a big band with a filled stadium and a huge hopping dance floor. He now saw himself playing guitar and connecting with people in the way he had only managed with one blue eyed girl from too far away. He wondered if she ever though of him anymore. If she would like the simple shows he wanted to do. He wondered if she would enjoy it or if she found some other guy to believe in. Most of all he just hoped she was happy wherever she was.

Almost like fate, the boy got his answer. It was an envelope that came in the mail. His mother gave it to him and asked, "who's that from?"

"I don't know," the boy said as he opened it.

Inside he found a small piece of paper and a watermark background that read "love." The note written on it simply said, "Please always save me a dance and sing one for me too. I miss you."

The boy smiled as he read it and pulled out about 7 pictures she'd sent him of her. She had taken little plastic jewels and used them to bedazzle each picture. One with a heart, another with the word love, and his favorite was of her sitting on a large rock with the words "I Miss You" bedazzled in the corner.

This was the driving force he needed to know he was worth something more. If he could have someone that never even sees him believe in him this much, he knew he could do it. So with a newfound confidence, he set out. It was time to end the day dreams of the past and put his dreams to work. It was time to start building

***To Be Continued****

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