By Michael G. Plumides , Jr.
My one hope was that I would get through this night. The minutes seemed to pass like hours, and with each tick of the clock, the stress factor increased. I hurriedly threw down roughly six thousand dollars in various denominations, laying my side arm on the table, as I fumbled through the series of crumpled bills.
The office was dimly lit. I wiped the sweat from my eye, and tried not to lose my concentration, as the thundering sound of guitar riffs bellowed with the prehistoric might of a Tyrannosaurus. It was September 18, 1990. The performance was intense; an onslaught of theatrical debauchery, of which, was the cause of my worry.
The band had finally finished its encore, to the response of hundreds of screaming, bloodsoaked fans, writhing in its apocalyptic, yet cartoonish essence. But I still had this overwhelming sense of dread that I just couldn’t shake. Something was amiss. I could smell it, like a fart in church.
It was kind of like sitting in the principal’s office after you were apprehended taking a bong hit in your car, where you’re convinced that something bad was about to happen, but to what severity? I tried to seal myself off from the world for just a few moments as the raucous stage performance dissipated to a low crowd noise. But the pulse-pounding sense of impending doom was disheveling me. Was it paranoia, or was there really a shit storm to the ninth power about to hit?
Was I imagining things? The show was over. Maybe I washome free. Maybe everything was going to be okay. I continued to separate the bills, trying to suppress each cascading thought that buzzed in my head. Then there was a knock on the office door.
“Who is it?” I asked.
“Officer Friendly,” an authoritative voice replied, followed by a chuckle.
I asked again, “Who?” pressing my palms down on the cash.
He beat on the frame again.
“Open the door now, before I kick the som’ bitch down.”
I quickly scooped up the stack of bills, and the pistol and placed them in the desk drawer. I paused for a moment, took a deep breath, and cautiously unlocked the office.
There he was in all of his glory, David Sullins, Chief Detective of Alcohol Law Enforcement, coming to call once again. He stood there with a look of pure bliss on his face, ready to get in my ass.
Sullins was a power hungry, pencil necked, pint-sized prick with a mustache and no chin, in his blue blazer and khaki pants, bullying his gun belt with the cocksure posturing of Barney Fife. The detective had a hard on for me for months. And there was definitely no love lost between the two of us. All 140 pounds of him was more than happy to take me down.
Sullins brought in two-dozen police with him, some in riot gear. Vice officers as well. The cops were bludgeoning patrons with their nightsticks and flashlights, manhandling every punk and metal head in the city as they exited the show. Sullins saw his opportunity to lecture me. “You in a world of shit now, boy,” Sullins barked as he picked through papers on the desk.
“What did I do this time?” I asked with a hint of sarcasm.
Sullins spat, “You best speak when spoken to, you hear me?”
I crossed my arms, and hung my head, as Sullins searched about the room with his flashlight, continuing to run his self-righteous mouth. I had to sit there and take it. He poked and prodded around the office searching for Godknows what, probably drugs. He pulled the desk drawer open to find the money and my Taurus .380-millimeter.
“What’s this?” Sullins asked spryly, thinking he had hit the jackpot.
“It’s the door money. You startled me, so I put it away.”
Reluctantly, Sullins instructed me to deposit the cash and the firearm in the drop box.
“Get yer ass up against that wall, boy.”
He laughed while he searched me, as another unidentified policeman looked on. And I promise you, that asshole was enjoying every grueling second.Another blued constable, holding the red haired kid by the shirt, stuck his head in the doorway. He asked Sullins, “Is this the one?”
“Yeah,” Sullins replied. “Take him on down and git his info. I wanna talk to his parents.”
Then Sullins turned to me. He sneered as he pointed a finger in my face, and exclaimed,
“I’m gonna shut you down once and for all, you goddamned, punk rock troublemaker.”
Sullins reached in his belt, and produced a pair of handcuffs, and grinned like a cat who just swilled a goldfish as he slapped the bracelets on me.
“Now, take us backstage so we can arrest that singer, and that priest he was a fuckin’ in the ass,” Sullins demanded.
He then grabbed me by the wrist and led me out the office door.
After all of my transgressions, the verdict was in. It was not going to be okay, as I had feared. The storm had finally hit landfall. It was then I knew that Sullins was correct. At that particular moment, I really was in a world of shit.
Kill the Music is available for purchase on Amazon.com.