ArchivedLogs:Vignette - Big Four

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Vignette - Big Four
Dramatis Personae


January 26, 2014

The Biggest Night In Music. (Part of Prometheus TP.)


Staples Center, Los Angeles

Limousine. Red carpet. Camera flashes. Screaming fans.

From the traction of tires treading the streets to the din of voices and clicking of lenses dilating their apertures -- so much noise for one man.

Ryan Black proceeded through there though, hair coiffed in a perfect fringe, clean shaven, dressed to the nines in an impeccable suit with some big-time fashion label stitched onto the tags lining the inside of jacket blazer and the waist of his pants. Shiny black shoes. Not a one feature to detract from Ryan Black the musician, Ryan Black the super star, Ryan Black the -- ??

What did Ryan Black know anymore, as he muted himself to the sounds of the Grammy's, the biggest night of his life and his society's greatest annual homage to his passion and talents since the days he first picked up a bow and fiddle and did as his daddy told him. But listening to daddy never got him anywhere, now, did it? Certainly, it was the opposite-- it was /rebellion/ that had earned him his musical merits before a stage broadcast across the nation, reaching millions, trying to -- effect change?

It's rare enough for a single artist to be nominated for all of the Grammy's Big Four and rarer still for one to claim all four prizes but Ryan Black was on the verge of this just this very night, burgeoning with the hope and surprise and all those other countless anxieties of being put before all the world to judge and still, just maybe, going home with all four of the general awards -- Record of the Year ("Brighter"), Album of the Year (/See It Through/), Song of the Year ("Brighter"), Best New Artist.

Still he felt numb inside; cut off, trapped in a senseless void – at least, he put himself in a world without sound or emotion. No sonic or psionic feedback to ebb and flow at him like the rhythm of a lunar cycle. Only bright lights and the heat they cast on his smiling face assaulted him as he shepherded himself down the length of the crimson pathway, ushered himself to his seat, to wait with baited breath.

Nerves inevitably ate away at him, but these he shut himself off to as well; he’d need all the resolve he could muster, fingertips blanched white with his pressurized grip applied to the undersides of his chair. He was even immune to the myriad celebrity faces whose veteran fame far outranked his own. He was oblivious to the privilege surrounding him. He was deaf to the raw kinetic energy vibrating in the air, pulsing around him with a hundred different thoughts and feelings, of the intensity around him that ran the full gamut of what it was like to be human and share in ages old tradition and admiration of the beauty of auditory storytelling.

And so it happened: Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year. Each time he stood, an automaton driven into motion by the thunderous applause of peers and listeners. Mechanically, he strutted down the cat-walk, framed an endearing smile, and rattled off the obligatory string of pre-prepared thanks handed him by his publicist. Thanks to the agent, the producers, the record label… blah blah blah … insert nondescript gratitude to unnamed friends and vaguely alluded family members here and so on and so forth and so on and on and on and on … and -- ??

Ryan Black was confronted by a startling ennui. A boredom with the Grammy’s. And then he was listed as a nominee for the fourth and final possible award he could take home for the evening. And he won.

This time, though, this time, there was an incredible outpour of anxious feeling, a brisk pace to the way he hurried forth to express his immense honor at being named the Best New Artist of 2013.

Standing in front of the microphone, he smiled, gold little trinket commemorating his musical achievements in hand.

"So I've thanked all the people I'm supposed to thank three times already. My agent, my fans, definitely my <censored> baristas. S'a couple things I didn't say the first times around though. Like the multi-platinum song that got me here? I wrote about a certain guy. Jackson Holland-Zedner. Some of you may have heard of. Bravest <censored> man I know, and my fuckin’ best friend.”

A pause, as he lets this information sink in with his audience, even as he exerts himself through the auditory field blasting through the speakers, enveloping them in – fear, then tranquility. He allows them shock and surprise before he gives them serenity even as he himself is ridden with all those negative emotions held back all the night long. He hesitates for a moment, then continues.

“The truth is, I coulda’ been <censored> a long <censored> time ago if it weren’t for the bastards who locked Jackson Holland-Zedner up abducting the both of us and experimenting us and holding us captive against our will all those <censored> years ago. Some of you might of seen those videos speaking out against Prometheus and laughed - but joke's on you bastards, because I’m one of those freaks too and I’ve got the scars to prove it.”

An uneasy murmur ripples through the crowd, but adrenaline’s pumping in Ryan Black’s veins at this point, as he holds up his gilded gramophone in the air, and untucks his pristine white shirt to reveal the scars crisscrossing around his belly, holding his pose triumphant for all to see broadcasted across the screens connected to video cameras zoomed in on him.

“That’s right. The radio across the whole world's been singing the praises of the most famous freak there is for months. And you're rewarding another one for it – I’m done hiding." His smile is the same warm-bright-cheerful it ever is as he holds up his trophy -- and a middle finger -- for the cameras, and turns to walk off the stage.

He’s Ryan Black. Ryan Black, the musician, Ryan Black the super star, Ryan Black the -- ??


He’s Ryan Black the mutant, and he’s made his stances clear.