I was at the Masque, my favorite shirt was ripped off of my chest, leaving it bare and sweaty. scratch marks and bodily fluids littered my once clean trso.  My whole body was flushed and my eyes weren't working correctly anymore.  The pit was only getting stronger, and I found myself at once lying on the floor, a large foot headed straight for my face, the bassist of the shit band of the night strumming away furiously, I could feel him in my ribs.  I could feel his fingers thudding against my earlobes.  The foot's collision with my face was so hard that my head bounced off the concrete floor and sent me into an upright position; I jumped to my feet, dizzy from being jostled so much but pissed of to the point of murder.  I grabbed the long scraggly badly bleached hair of the trippy-hippie that's foot had just left a long lasting impression on my face.  I threw him into the sharp edged stage, sending the bastard's head and arms flailing at the band.  He turned quickly, charging at me.  It was only then when I realized how large this man was.  I dropped to my hands and knees just when he got close enough, sending him hurling over me as if we were the three stooges, the third one being the asshole of a singer yelling at us for causing a ruckus at HIS punk show.

I jumped up and stood my ground.  Normally this would be the time to run, but that's not what I'm about.  I have three rules; never get attached, never say sorry, and never, EVER, run.  I planted my heel firmly in the grime on the floor and took up an "I may be small but I'll still murder you if it comes to it" stance.  The hippie threw himself at me clumsily, running into a fellow mosher who had joined the masses to watch us fight.  That angered my opponent and sent him running at me head first; as if he were a bull and I had just been dipped in red paint.  I had to do nothing but make a quick sidestep to the left to send the big lummox crashing into the solid walls of the always lovely Masque.  It knocked him out, and sent me into the arms of a security bloke.  I was quickl;y booted from the club.  I screamed and writhed in the security fellow's arms, swearing up a storm and taking on a heavy Brittish accent, just for show.

When my body hit the ground outside I was all limp.  My mind was racing, and my body gave up for a moment.  In the brief moment of my dead body, overactive mind episode I thought a million things.  But I'll just list a few.  One was that I gave up, as I mentioned, and two was that I was hungry.  Three was that I gave up on eating, four was that I gave up on giving up, five was Ronnie's face, six was being hungry, seven being cold, eight wanting to go to bed, nine wanting to take another hit of X.  I got to my feet, brushed off the newest layer of dirt and headed off.  I was headed toward Barnacle Bill's.

Barnacle Bill's is what we called Ronnie's apartment building because it used to be a bar and a hotel suite building for the rich and famous called Barnacle Bill's.  But they changed it into an apartment building and a coffee shop that sells like muffins and stuff too.

I took care to take the back alley's on my way there, avoiding the night time perps, or should I say pervs, of La.  Whether it be people on the streets or in their cars, they spelled no bueno to a young punk with no mommy and daddy to call the cops when he didn't come home.  When I turned onto 16th and climbed the old fire escape up to Bill's I heard her siren song.  Camilla.  Allow me to break this girl down for you.  She had the perfect ass to tits ratio, Raven black hair, pure blue eyes, fresh california sand colored skin, a pale dusting of freckles across her chest, not too noticeable unless she had her shirt off, the most beautiful voice you have ever heard, sort of like a Marilyn Monroe meets Madonna meets Siouxsie Sioux, and of course, that accent.

All I really know about Camilla is she's from Tijuana Mexico.  Her father was a gringo and her mother was from some village in southern Mexico where they ate bugs and shit like that. Everything I know about  Camilla comes from extensive research, like, I know that she will do anything to be the singer of your band, but nobody ever wants her.  Not that she's a bad singer, no no no, quite the contrary.  She's just too impressionable.  She would change at the drop of a hat to impress people, she was far too weak, and she cried a lot.  But Ronnie took her in, and that was the partnership that launched a thousand punk shows.  But more on that later.

Camilla was singing her song, I could hear her from her bedroom window, the song was in Spanish but for some reason I knew what she was talking about.  The song was about Paolo, a fictional character that Camilla and I had come up with one night when we had severe writers block.  The idea was that we would pretend we were in love with this person, Paolo for her, Paula for myself, and write about them.  The thing was that, Neither of us had ever been in love, so we just pretended, and we watched Ronnie, and took notes.  He was sort of like our father in those days, he made sure we had food and a bed, and clean clothes, money, drugs, snacks, sex, everything we needed, of course it was for a price.  Well anyways, people could always tell when Camilla's  songs were about Paolo because, they always sounded beautiful and had more feeling than the average punk song, with exception of every Germs song ever made.

Anyways, I waved at her through her window, which sent her nearly jumping out it at me.  "REN! HAVE YOU SEEN RONNIE?? HE CUT HIS HAIR" she basically screamed into my ear.  "CAMILLA HAVE YOU SEEN THE SHUT THE FUCK UP SWITCH ANYWHERE?" I yelled back.  She rubbed my head big brother style and I pinched her cheek the aunt Gertrude way.  She hopped up the first three ladder rungs and turned to look at me "you're going to pee." she said, climbing up the rest of the rungs quickly, me myself after her.  I opened the window for her and she climbed inside, pulling me in to fall on the couch that sat just inside the window.  She covered my eyes as if she was my mom, I was six, and  there were people fucking in front of us.  

I could smell Ronnie from where I sat, and hear his footsteps coming my way.  "Renny!" he shouted.  I could tell he was flying high from the way he said my name. "what?" I said, shaking my head to make Camilla work to keep my eyes blinded.  "I got a haircut, I hope you like it".  All of a sudden I felt his breath on my cheek, and Camilla's hands fell from my face, but I kept my eyes squinted shut.   

Ronnie had hair that most guys killed for.  It was blacker than cinnamon in the dark, and it did whatever he wanted it to.  To see that he had changed it almost scared me.  I never liked change, and especially not to Ronnie.  I let my eyes open slowly, and adjust to the dim light that poured into the room through the hallway.  Ronnie was too close for me to see what he had done, so I leaned back.  To my wild surprise the hair atop his head was no longer there.  He had shaved it, and not that it looked bad, I just never thought of Ronnie as a skin.  

Lemme tell you something, skinhead does not mean neo-nazi fucker.  A skinhead is someone who keeps short hair (usually shaved with a 1/4 inch razor, or shorter, sometimes completely bald). They're working class citizens who reacted to the hippies with their long gross hair and frankincense breath.  Being skin is a subculture of punk, so we all listen to similar music and such but, we wear different clothes usually.

There's this segregation between skins, punks, hippies, and neo-nazis on the scene.  Basically the skins and punks get along, but they still define themselves differently.  The skins keep their hair short and wear their braces and short jeans and tall boots, button up polos and all.  And punks, well.  We wear whatever the hell we want, with the addition of having hair atop our Gulliver's (usually in spikes or Mohican's).  The hippies and the Nazi's are like our nemeses'.  There is no chance of EVER seeing anyone on the punk scene even thirty feet from a hippie or nazi without the nemesis getting the shit beat from them.  You all know what a hippie is, so I don't need to further explain other than that they smell disgusting and smoke a little too much Mary Magic.  Neo-Nazis.  I personally hate them more than I do hippies.  Ronnie never had much of a problem with them, which bugged me because they were constantly after Camilla for being an immigrant.

So, Ronnie's newfound skin attitude was very apparent as he changed in front of us into some rolled up Levi's and Doc Martin boots, and black suspenders with a light blue polo.  I almost wanted to hit him for changing so suddenly, and because it was like he was a stranger that stole my best friend's excellent physique, smile, and house.

I geared up for the fight of a lifetime, which I was so positive that would happen that I could've basically cut the wires and let the piano that is Ronnie's temper fall on me with my absolute confidence about the quarrell.  I guess I brought it on myself when he asked me if I liked his new look and I said no.  Well so, he got in my face yelling about how I was jealous or something, and I just sort of blocked him out because I knew it was the crack getting to his head, and I could feel Camilla getting all tense as if a Rhino was headed for her face, so I just kept my big mouth shut and waited for Ronnie to stop.

After he finally shut the hell up, Ronnie sat between Camilla and myself and leaned his head on my shoulder like a wee little baby.  It was a bit hard for me to allow him to do that because I was so angry at him, but he knew I wasn't going to apologize, and he knew I was upset, so I wasn't too worried about the scowl that took over my face.

The End

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