I have been thinking about the cover for Shardonnay. Little wriggly sperm swimming around of course, and (Bashi’s idea) a dictionary, open at the word ‘Consequence,’ which will be highlighted. But the definition shown will be in Shardie’s words, so for example: ‘Somethin what happens due to what we done, and it ain’t always good.’ So, homework for this week, chaps: define ‘Consequence’ as you think Shardonnay might. I will use the best one on the real cover.
Dennis’ book is at the printers! Really excited we both are. The publishing company, Pen Press, designed him a wonderful purple cover, with a spirit in a cloud. When it is ready I will let you know.
The next day, I turned on the telly at about seven in the morning. I screamed, ‘Mum! Come here! Have a look at this! You not gonna believe this!’
The cameras was not at the camp no more. No, they was following Nick who had his backpack on and were leaping down the hill over the rocks. The only person who’d managed to keep up with him were that grumpy Lost Boy, Finn and a couple of half-dressed cameramen. The cameras was bumping around, as the path were not smooth.
‘Oy, Nick, where are you going?’ asked the cameramen, breathless they were and tryin to button up their jeans.
Nick din’t answer them. It were as if he never heard em. He were talkin with Finn. You couldn’t hear what they was sayin, but they never stopped talkin and, it sounded like, singin. It were like a mini battle of two voices.
The path opened out onto rough scrub-land. A wide moor stretched ahead. The two lads faced each other, nodded and carried on walking but their paths split. All the people runnin after em stopped in confusion. Their heads went both ways, then they chose a way. Most went with Nick, but some went with Finn. Some of the cameras went with him too. As he walked he ripped off his furry hood, left it on the heather. He pulled off his blue coat and dumped it. Underneath he were all in black.
Me mum could see I were upset. She said, ‘Shardie, they gotta go their own way. Everyone’s gotta find their own path in life, no good followin someone else’s, you gotta find your own.’ I thought, she’s right, they’re different kids, different situations. You can’t fit a round peg in a square hole. They ain’t lived the same life, they gotta find their own way.
Our screen followed Nicholas. If you wanted Finn you could change channel. Nick got to a road, turned left, walked into a little Italian town. He asked one of the film crew manager people if he could borrow their phone. We watched him talkin on the phone. Next thing we knew he were picked up in a sleek grey car and he and his core of Lost Boys, minus Finn of course, was whisked off. The commentators was having a field day! It were like that day the Twin Towers fell down and none of the commentators knew what the blazes were happenin? They was falling over theirselves with their little theories what went nowhere. And there were a big ol scramble with the press trying to get hold of vehicles so’s not to let em get away, as they’d probably be fired if they let the biggest story of the decade get past em.
The telly were all of a buzz about Finn breakin away from the Lost Boys. None of the Lost Boys had ever left before, except of course, Sebastian, but he never chose for that to happen. There were only that one girl, Izzy, who had left the Heavenly Host cos she couldn’t handle the pressure of the fame. Fans was grievin, as you do when your fave band loses a member like remember when the Spice Girls split up? And Take That? Horrible. Nick din’t seem too worried though. He apparently got on a plane to New York. They was in a recordin studio with the same producers what made ‘Little Acorns’ with them, working on the new sound.
Finn had come back to London with around thirty of the Heavenly Host. He went to a place in Camden, also to do some recordin. He rented a massive old house and got a band together out of his followers. There were a big chap on bass, a skinny drummer with long spiky hair, a crusty guitarist, and Finn on vocals. And this were genius: there was also about ten girls, all with black nails, black lipstick, blank eyes, not a single smile between em, and big big drums. They just pummelled them drums like their lives depended on it! They was big news. See, they had the sound of the Lost Boys and a bit of the fame and allure of the Lost Boys, but they was taking it in altogether a new direction. Yeah, girls, basically. Lost? Yeah probably! Matt’s kids? Let’s just say, they had the look, so again, yeah, probably.
Some of the words what came out of that boy’s mouth though! Ooh, wash out yer mouth son! It were like, oh I can’t even say it, it’s too dirty: ‘f*** your mother in the c***, f*** her, f***her,’ and the like! Me and me mum would sit there on the sofa with our hair litrally standin on end. Frankly shockin! But guess what? People was flockin to them gigs. They was spillin out onto the street. People couldn’t get enough. The band were edgy see. They was angry. And all the edgy angry people out there was pickin up on the new vibe.
Within a month they was being interviewed on Jules Holland. Jules asked them what everyone wanted to know which was why was they so angry? Finn flared his mega-pierced nostrils, not in a good way, and said, ‘some people manage to deal with loss and pain by looking at all the positives, like all the things they’ve still got. But all this positive shit….you know, I’ve like had enough of all that new-age hippy crap?’ He leant forward and in a coarse whisper and with a sneer of his multiple-pierced lip said, ‘Life is full of shit, people! Get used to it.’ He gave a grin, again, not in a good way.
‘What shit happened to you then, Finn?’ asked Jules.
There were a pause while Finn’s eyes looked up like he were asking for patience from the Lord!
He sighed. ‘Where to start? The person I thought were me father, he wanted me dead? Me mum died when I were ten? Me real father don’t want to know….what more do you need? Half of me brothers have gone all soppy and religious, like losing their minds? No, it’s time to make a stand. See if I can save the other half from turnin to mush.’ He gesticuled to his followers.
‘By ‘brothers’, do you mean the Lost Boys?’ asked Jules softly.
Finn twisted his face in a bit of an ugly way. ‘Yeah. They’re my brothers,’ he said.
‘So at Christmas, will you be up against your ‘brothers’ for the Number 1?’ asked Jules.
Finn laughed. ‘Yeah, I’m up for thrashing it out with them, why not?’ he said.
The next week he went into a recording studio with his band and twenty of the Heavenly Host. They stayed in for more than a month. No one heard a peep out of them during this time. The tension were unbearable. What sort of a sound was they making? Everyone wanted to know. Little clips of them on Youtube from the several angry spittin gigs with them crazy blank-eyed drummer girls went viral. People was gaggin for more.
Equally, Nicholas had gone quiet. He were recordin in New York. We went over to visit just for a long weekend. It were well hot and humid, but I thought I might check out Fifth Ave while I were there, did meself a nice bit of shoppin at Barney’s and Macy’s. We took Nick out to a diner for eggs on toast, always his favourite. He were well distracted but that weren’t nothing new. Couldn’t get much sense out of him. I asked him if he’d been shoppin since he’d been there. He just looked at me like what’s shoppin? I sighed. While I were there I brought him some nice Calvin Klein underwear and jeans and a couple of trendy t-shirts from Canal St. I mean, not being funny or anythin, but a guy needs some clothes. He didn’t need much heavier stuff as it were boilin hot that summer.
Anyway, then I needed to get back. It were me mate Shelley’s birthday and we was going to the Ice Bar in London in a limo to have drinks in them big coats. I’m never one to miss a party, you know me, and I told Nick not to worry, I’d be watchin out for him on the telly. His dad stayed out there another week just to help him with practical things, make sure he were getting enough to eat and that.