The Ravens, a rock band on the verge of discovery, have a performance that ends in a complete train wreck. Crushing the hopes and dreams of their sound engineer and manager, Terry. A Jinn grants him three wishes that go awry, as all wishes do. And he finds himself stubbornly reliving the past four weeks over, and over, and over again. Julie busks in the Waterloo Underground with vague memories of a strange recurring dream. It’s a love story, but it’s complicated. Card players trapped in purgatory. One waiting for a way out. Terry appears at the door. You have to be in to win. So, are you in, or are you out?
Large rectangle glass eyes blinked music from inside the Clissold Arms. Spilling its colored tears over the sidewalk outside.
Boom! Boom! Boom! Boom! Inadequate speakers pounded at glazed eyed ravens twitching to the rock anthem.
Terry presses a hand against a headset, frantically trying to balance the sounds flooding his senses. Without warning a feedback shrieks from the speakers causing some ravens to shriek back in protest.
Gareth looks up from a guitar riff to the Terry behind the console.
“Sorry…” Mouths Terry, raising a hand as though to apologize, “…**** ‘em.” He mutters beneath his breath. What did they expect from the old equipment?
A passing zombie overhears the blasphemy, and glares at Terry as though he had just insulted the greatest band ever to come out of Muswell Hills.
“**** you.” Scowls the zombie distancing himself from the infidel.
Rocking his body in time with the beat. Terry counts down the bars. Killing the sound system, sliding faders to the bottom of the console that had seen better days. Bright lights burst upon the small stage and the four band members raise their arms to acknowledge their adoring fans. Scantily clad young women applaud wildly. Short skirts and low cut tops siren their lustful intentions. Cougars sit at tables sipping on long straws making suggestive looks at the young men.
“What was that all about?” Asked Sal glaring at Terry.
“Hey man, don’t blame me, its shit equipment... You know that.” Terry bites back.
“It’s your job to make sure it doesn’t happen.” Remarks Sal becoming tetchy.
“Just remember who got you this gig!” Terry reminds him.
“Steady down you two… It’s no one’s fault… Like Terry saids, its shit equipment, but it’s all we’ve got until we get some decent bread… Now kiss and make up.” Warns Gareth.
“Sorry Terry.” Accepts Sal backing down.
“Yeah… sorry Sal.” Offers Terry checking the console.
“Come on, let’s collect our wages and get out of here.” Said Gareth keen to get going.
“Think I’ll stick around for a while.” Said Ness, looking towards a girl who had locked eyes on him.
“Whatever… Pack the gear in the van and you can do what you like.” Gareth orders him.
“I’m getting a drink first.” Said Ness ignoring him.
“I’m with him.” Said Taylor following in her brother’s wake.
“When in Rome…” Surrenders Gareth, “…You coming?”
“Yeah, I suppose.” Concedes Terry reluctantly.
“How’d we sound?” Asked Gareth.
“You were bitch’n it man… Just need to level out the base and tweak the treble… But on this old box it’s going to be difficult… I only wish we had better equipment.”
“Hey… You can do it, you’re the best… You get us the gigs we’ll get you the money, okay?”
“Okay.” Accepts Terry.
“Let’s get our wages and a beer in us...” Throwing arm over Terry’s shoulder nudges him towards the bar to find Ness already pulling a babe for the evening.
“What’s your name?” Asked Ness.
“Shannon… Like your music.” She slurs after one too many shots. Eyes betraying her sexual starvation.
“Yeah, yeah… I’m Ness, and this is my brother Taylor… You wanna see our van?” Hoping the barely legal lass could read, between the lines.
“I’d love to, can your brother come too?” She asked now undressing Taylor in her mind.
“I would come without him… Follow me.” Remarks Ness eagerly leading Shannon by the hand with Taylor following closely behind. The trio disappear without notice.
“Terry.” Said McCracken pushing an envelope towards him.
“Thanks Phil.” Pocketing the envelope without counting the cash wages.
“See you next week… You still on?”
“Yeah yeah, of cos… Thanks man.”
“What can I get you boys?” Asked McCracken.
“Three pints thanks Phil be lovely… Ta.”
“Coming right up boys.” Reaching for a glass places it beneath a nozzle and pulls slowly down on a large wooden handle.