What it Takes to be a Star

by Abby K


What it Takes to be a Star
Abby K
Wanting red
Jerry, unsure of the situation, tossed his guitar aside and pushed himself out of the house with his brother, flimsy and seemingly lifeless, cradled in his arms. He sprinted down the ominously moonlit Los Angeles streets, past the same leafless trees and
houses, familiarity creeping
upon him. He darted to the
alleyway that he deemed a
shortcut hoping to rid a mile
off his route. The enormous,
red-lit sign in the distance
seemed to just be out of his
reach moving further and
further away in his perception until he reached his destination.

Jerry dashed in, grabbing the attention of the many white-coated adults standing around who immediately rushed to his brother’s aid. Jerry heard many words thrown out amidst the chaos. Perilous familiarity struck on certain words like Coronary Heart Disease, and Heart
attack. But three words caught his attention. Three words he forced out of his mind. Three words that were circling back. He could die.
no more chances
Two hours after, the doctors explained that his brother, Peter, needed overnight assistance and, thus, filled a recurring role; a present patient at this hospital. He picked up his phone, and after one glance at his missed calls, it felt as though his senses were defrosting, realizing he missed a gig. The gig that should have placed Jerry’s one big dream on a silver platter and delivered it directly to him. Jerry’s band committed to playing for a record label, and he screwed it up for himself and his band. Suddenly his phone rang, startling himself when he looked at the caller ID. KC Coleman. Although reluctant, he accepted the call, and he immediately regretted that.

“What happened?” KC angrily shouted. “We missed our chance because of you.”

“I know, I’m so so sorry, my brothe-” Jerry pleaded.

“No, I’m not giving you a chance to redeem yourself,” KC frustratingly remarked. “You’re off the band.” Jerry felt his life start to spiral down the drain hoping a pang of guilt would overcome KC. “Let’s see where you’ll be in 10 years when you’re late to everything.” 
10 years later...
Jerry walked over to the familiar corner on Sunset and dropped his stuff down with a sense of nervousness, feeling guilty for leaving his brother at home. To be fair, Peter kept whining and pushing Jerry to go out and practice for his performance. In two days' time, he would perform at The Forum. The building
that now possesses a glamorous glow would grant him an experience that surpasses any other and could potentially be the kickstart to his musical career. He excitedly opened his rustic, yellow songbook to refresh his memory. His newest song omits a delicate, yet passionate melody. His lyrics embodied his true soul as he felt himself open up and experience comfort through his own words. Suddenly, something caught his eye. Evil familiarity swept over him like a broom trying to sweep the remnants of trash from 10 years ago. Midnight black heels, that accentuated the sound of a stomp, adorned the feet of KC Coleman. His muscles tightened up as she walked towards him, somehow asserting her authority over him when he glanced at the teacher badge plastered over her cheetah print shirt.

“You don’t deserve to be playing music after you sabotaged me.” KC retorted as she belligerently found his guitar case with the end of her foot. “As long as I’m alive, you will never succeed with a musical career.” Although his music came easy to him, a response to the heartless woman, glowering over him wasn’t. She turned away, her thick, black hair smacking him in the process. As the sound of her steps faded, so did Jerry’s anxiousness, and he soon could feel relaxed again, for now.
feeling small
The following day, Jerry walked into the coffee shop, ready to play. As the bell on the door, kept on ringing, his excitement grew. He readily brought out his guitar and started strumming becoming fully immersed in the melodic flow of the music. He blocked out his surroundings to avoid anxiety, but little did he know, anxiety was waiting for him, physically, when KC walked in with her co-workers. Refusing to look in that direction, his peripheral vision confirmed the frightening truth. 

“Are you guys hearing this guy?” KC scoffed to her colleagues. “He’s worse than bad. He’s awful.” Jerry found the bravery to make eye contact and immediately kept his glare at her issuing some sort of challenge. A challenge that weirdly enough, he thought he might win. But as the duration of this staring contest grew, so did Jerry’s apprehension, fearing that nothing good could possibly come out of this. He broke his gaze, and ran out of the building, with only his guitar tightly