The Music of Mayhem

By: The Great Duhmimchi

Some people seem to have a knack for finding strange things; strange things always seem to find Zane Legends. Strange didn't even begin to describe the world that Zane found himself in. It had been decades since the great fallout of World War 3. What was left of the human race had long since abandoned the surface world for fear of radiation poisoning from the Atomic War of 2017. A new and crude existence had begun beneath the ground. There were no cities to speak of but one: Subterania. It was the last effort made by man to coexist peacefully. Well, somewhat peacefully anyway. Daily riots and an ever-increasing death toll could hardly be considered peaceful in normal times- but these times were far from normal.

Zane loved the raucous of life in the city. There was always a place to sleep, to take shelter from the acid leakage that poured down from the surface, and there was always something to eat. The food wasn't great, but it was better than the rat feasts that you found trying to live in the outskirts. Subterania had its bad sides, but it was home . . . for now anyway. And while he was here he was going to enjoy himself.

Zane sat at his favorite place in the city. A small club called The Grunge. It was so named not because of its lovely oil on walls motif, but because of its origin. The club was dedicated to everything vintage from the great 90's era of music. Local bands tried their hand at recreating the wondrous musical genius of what is known as the grunge music scene; everything from Nirvana, and Pearl Jam to Rod Stewart. At the present moment Zane was trying to gag down the water he was drinking, desperately attempting to avoid the gag reflex that this Brian Adams remix was causing.

"His music was bad enough when it wasn't remade with an electric tambourine!" someone yelled from the crowd. Zane didn't say anything, but he raised his metal mug in a salute that said he agreed. The fool that was attempting to spew out ancient lyrics that should have been long dead was knocked out by a flying mug just as he was finishing the beloved chorus of Everything I do, I do it for you. "Well I did that for all of us," Zane shouted. And the rest of the club roared with laughter and screams of gratitude.

Leaning back and chuckling to himself at his own greatness he silently hoped that no one would ever find out about his Brian Adams retro mp3 collection that he kept at home on his computer. Say what you want, those things are classics, he said to himself in a futile attempt to convince himself, yet again, that he was cooler than he really was.

"That was a nice shot, but personally I would have aimed for the tambourine."

Zane was caught off guard and nearly fell back from leaning too far in his chair. "What," he said. "Oh right, that....well no sense in destroying a good tambourine," he said with a wry smile. Finally setting his stools legs on the hard floor he got a good look at the woman he was talking to. She was about his height with hair shorter than his and each eyebrow carried 2 small metal loops (the sure sign of a fellow grunge enthusiast).

"I brought you another drink," she said. "Or more ammunition . . . however you want to look at it." She took a seat on the stool next to him facing the stage. Zane rubbed unconsciously at his scar like he always did when he felt nervous.

"That's a nutty mark you got there," she said. "Kinda look like an upside-down guitar mount."

"This," he said while trying to move his hand away quickly. "Well it's a crazy story really; I was just in the wrong place when . . ."

"Kinda like the tambourine man," she said, with a flick at his mug.

Music pounded from all around them so hard that it shook the block walls. But the girl talked as though they were all by themselves in quiet room. While they talked they unconsciously bobbed their heads to the thumping bass that echoed around them- pulsating with the blood thumping in their veins.

"I was kind of hoping that you would see the drink as a peace offering," the girl said. "My band is up next and I wasn't looking for anymore metal to put on my forehead." She flicked Zane's cup again and a little water sloshed onto the table.

"As long as you stay away from trying to turn easy listening into something tolerable I think you should be fine." Zane laughed at his own joke hoping that she would join in. Apparently she didn't find it as funny as he did. "You know I'm joking," he said shifting uneasily in his chair.

"It helps that we start with tolerable music to begin with," she said. "We call ourselves Sub-urban. We only play our own stuff, but I know the owner, so he lets everyone think that it's some grunge era rip off so we can play. Hold onto that cup of yours, and maybe you can fill it up again when I'm done." With that she got up and walked up to the stage. Swaggering all she had to emphasize the fact that she wanted him to stay.

Zane couldn't say a word. He just sat there unable to think of anything . . . . well, almost anything. "Hey waiter, wanna bring me something to grub? I'm running on empty here."

Genre: Science Fiction
Setting: In a room
Character: Musician