The Pit Directors Son

Kendall's POV

"So do you want to come to LA and be molded into a pop star?" Gustavo asked.

"No," I say plainly. "I don't sing."

"Yes you do," Katie retorted.

"No I don't Katie," I say.

"You always were singing before dad died and I know for a fact that you don't study every Tuesday night," Katie says.

"Then where am I?" I say raising my voice a little.

"You know what I'll show you the door," mom says to Gustavo and Kelly. "I'm sorry they don't usually fight."

"Its ok," Kelly says. "We leave tomorrow give us a call if you change your mind," they leave a card on the table and head out the door.

"Then where am I?" I ask again my voice rising in volume.

"Your at the theater because they close early on Tuesdays and you have the key so you go and play the instruments and sing in the band and choir rooms," Katie says standing up.

"How would you know?" I yell.

"Because I'm not an idiot," she says. "When you come back on Tuesdays you always have dads keys and that's the only way you could get in."

"Keep your nose out of my business Katie!" I scream.

"Why don't you just go? You know this is what you and dad always secretly wanted!"

"Don't bring dad into this! He's dead Katie he's been dead for almost three years!"

"I can bring him into this if I want to because I know it's what he would want me to do!"

"How would you know you were only six when he died you hardly remember what he was like!"

"Kendall don't say that," my mom intervenes.

"I don't care if he does because he's the one who can't get over his death!" Katie screams tears falling from her eyes.

I stand up and walk out of the room and strait out the door ignoring the calls from my friends while my mom comforts Katie. I walk to the theater from my house but I don't really know how I got here I guess this is where my heart took me. I walk up to the door and take out the key. My dad worked here as the pit director for the plays and he always had keys so when he died I took them for some reason even though I was supposed to give them back. I unlock the door and walk in going towards the stage entrance. The stage is set up for auditions a piano and guitar sit off to the left of the stage with a microphone in the center. I walk onto the stage turning on some lights as I go.

What Katie said was true I come here every Tuesday and sneak into the band and choir rooms. This place is where I feel connected to my dad he would always bring me every Tuesday to his pit rehearsal and I'd listen the entire time. After awhile of just sitting there I would take a copy of the score and direct along with my dad helping him pick out any mistakes he may have missed. I then would sometimes migrate towards the stage where the actors were rehearsing or the choir room to listen to singing. I became a regular face around here almost all of the cast members would know me by the end of the play, and the other people who knew my dad would say hi when they passed by. The finale performances were the best part though I would come to everyone of them usually helping in the sound booth or with the lighting. At the end of the finale show they would bring the head of the lighting, sound, costumes, and pit up to the stage and recognize their hard work, I would always be so proud of my dad as he stood up there getting all the praise he deserved. I look on the wall of the theater. The memorial for my dad is hanging on the wall. I sit in a chair on the stage, grab a guitar and start to sing.

Hold on, to me as we go As we roll down this unfamiliar road And although this wave is stringing us along Just know you're not alone Cause I'm going to make this place your home

Settle down, it'll all be clear Don't pay no mind to the demons They fill you with fear The trouble it might drag you down If you get lost, you can always be found

Just know you're not alone Cause I'm going to make this place your home

Settle down, it'll all be clear Don't pay no mind to the demons They fill you with fear The trouble it might drag you down If you get lost, you can always be found

Just know you're not alone Cause I'm going to make this place your home

Ooo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo. oo-oo-oo-oo Ooo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo. oo-oo-oo-oo Ooo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo. oo-oo-oo-oo Ooo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oo. oo-oo-oo-oo

Aaa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh-oh. aa-aa-oh-ohhhhh Aaa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh-oh. aa-aa-oh-ohhhhh Aaa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh-oh. aa-aa-oh-ohhhhh Aaa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh-oh. aa-aa-oh-ohhhhh

Aaa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh-oh. aa-aa-oh-ohhhhh Aaa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh-oh. aa-aa-oh-ohhhhh Aaa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh-oh. aa-aa-oh-ohhhhh Aaa-aa-aa-oh-oh-oh-oh. aa-aa-oh-ohhhhh

Dad made this place a second home for me. This was the one place I didn't feel pressure to be the best. When I was at hockey I was always stressed about my team and making sure I them were playing at our best. Here I could mess up all I wanted and since I usually was alone when I messed up no one yelled at me for making a mistake.

"Dad why did you have to die?" I say putting the guitar away. I felt tears welling up in my eyes. "Why did that driver have to be drinking?" I stand up and begin to pace, something I do when I'm angry. "You said that you'd never leave! You said that once I was 15 you would let me direct the pit because I would be mature enough for the responsibility!" I jump off the stage and angrily walk towards my dad's memorial. "I'm 15 now dad but your not here!" I slap the rock as hard as I can. "Why aren't you here? I want you to be here because you were the one person who got me completely," I break down putting my head on the rock sobbing. "I miss you dad please come back to me," I suddenly feel a hand touch my shoulder I turn my head and see James though my tears. He pulls me into a hug I cry into his shoulder as he sits us down. He tells me that its ok and that I can let it all out. I cry harder my mind going though all of the memories of my dad.

"Dad when can I direct the pit? I really want to and I'm ready," my 10 year old self asked.

"I'll tell you what Kendall when your 15 I'll let you but never before because its a lot of pressure and you'll be mature enough by then to handle it," he says taking out some scores and giving them to me. "I'm going to work with the strings today and I want you to help direct the rest of the pit."

"All by myself?"

"I'll be in the next room if you need me meanwhile you better get going or you won't get the full time to direct," he says and I bolt out of the room scores in hand running towards the band room.

"You guys ready?" I ask walking into the room.

"Your directing today Kendall?" a clarinet player asks.

"Yup now lets start right after the opening because I heard you guys are having trouble with that spot and we'll work on it later," We skip the first song and play every other one until intermission. I then stop them and start on the first song. After awhile I stop the pit because they are not doing good. "Ok this probably the hardest song besides the ending one. Now the problem with it is that every song before this was easy and you didn't have to try to stay on beat this song you need to work hard unless the song will crash and burn. Now lets try it again but this time really focus on staying on beat," I start them and I already hear the improvement from most everyone. "Saxes watch you're all off beat!" I yell over the music being played. By the time we finish the song everyone is on beat and we sound way better than we did before. "Ok so I'm gonna let you go but I want you to work on staying on beat especially when my dad comes back so you guys can play the score all the way though. Now you guys can leave," I close the score and walk out of the room.

"Good job Kendall," I hear my dad say from behind me.

"Thanks dad," I say. "So now do you think I could direct a few years earlier?"

"Not a chance bud now lets go home it's getting late and your mom is going to be really mad at me for keeping you out."

"You know what Kendall?" James says snapping me out of my thoughts. "I think this might be the only time you cried since your dad died."

"Well there was no time to cry," I say. "I had to take over as the man of the house. The man of the house doesn't cry and I needed to be strong for Katie and mom."

"You sure let out a lot of emotion in a very short time," he says.

"How much did you hear me say?"

"I heard every after you said I'm 15 and your not here."

"Oh I'm sorry you have to see me like this," I say.

"Don't apologize I kind of knew I was gonna find you like this bringing up your dad gets you really emotional. I do have one question though," he says.


"Why is 15 such an important year for you? I mean I remember at your birthday you looked sad the entire time. Why?" he asks.

I sit up a little so I can talk comfortably. "My dad said that when I turned 15 I could direct the pit during a show."

"Your dad was the best director ever I remember coming to shows with you and the guys and being captivated by the music," he says.

"Yeah he was pretty cool. He loved music that's why the music sounded so good," I say.

"You were a pretty good director yourself," he says and I look at him wondering how he knew I ever did that. "Logan, Carlos and I may have snuck in to watch when the pit rehearsed. We were 10 at the time I don't even know how we did it but we managed to hide in the air ducts and we heard you directing."

"I was just thinking about that," I say.

"Saxes!" he yells and we start to laugh. "All of us were shocked you could follow the music so easily and pick out the flaws of people."

"I was a pretty intense 10 year old I think they were happy to have my dad back because I critiqued them a lot."

"You made them good though."

"Where are the other guys?" I ask.

"Kendall there you are," Logan yells from across the theater. "James you said you'd tell us if you found him."

"Yeah we want to comfort him to," Carlos says.

"Well if you want to comfort me than you better get over here," I yell.

They rush though the aisles running towards me they slow down when their faces soften when they see the memorial above us. They both sit down and put an arm around me.

"My mom used to come to plays here all the time," Carlos says. "But after your dad died she said it was really hard for her to be here it was so sad and the music wasn't as good."

"My mom did to," Logan says.

"Mom hasn't really been here since he died this place has so many memories for her and its really hard to keep herself composed," I say.

"You should ask if you could direct I bet they'd let you," Carlos says.

"Hey kids," we hear someone scream. "What are you doing here? Wait is that Kendall Knight I see?"

"I'm really sorry sir we'll go," I say getting up.

"No you can stay I need to talk to you any way," He walks over to us putting something in front of me. "I'm Carter the new pit director. I just found out that I'm not going to be able to make the finale show and I was wondering if you'd like to direct?"

"But I don't know the score and the finale show here is in 2 weeks," I say.

"You know the score perfectly just look at it," he says handing me the score.

"Footloose? They did this play 5 years ago," I say.

"Yeah and if I remember right I think a pit member told me that you directed them in practice one day and they said that you should direct."

"Are you serious?" I ask getting excited.

"Dead serious. So are you in?"

"Of course I'll be here on Tuesday to practice," I say.

"Great I'll see you then," he walks out of the theater and I pick up the score looking though it.

"I can't believe that just happened your going to get to direct," James says.

"I know I better look though the scores before Tuesday," I say.

"Yeah now we should go home because your mom is freaking out Kendall," Logan says.

"Fine but I need to grab something first want to come with?" I ask.

"Sure lead the way," Carlos says.

I walk out of the theater my friends in toe to the band room. I unlock the door and walk into my dad's old office.

"Wow they never moved anything," I say looking at the scattered papers on the desk.

I search for my dad's baton he used it every show to direct. I end up finding it in a box full of music sheets.

"I got we can go," I say.

We walk out of the theater and go home I start to feel guilty I never yell at Katie and I hope I didn't hurt her feelings. I go up to the door and open it.

"Kendall is that you?" mom asks.

"Yeah its me," I say.

"Don't you dare run off again like that," she says running down the stairs and giving me a hug. "Hey what's that?" she asks about the things in my hand.

"I'm going to direct the pit in 2 weeks," I say plainly.

"What? Why?" she asks.

"Because the new director can't be there and I already know the score."

"Are you sure you want to do this it's a lot of pressure."

"I'm sure mom dad was going to let me direct when I turned 15 and I am," I say.

"Ok you can do it and we'll all be in the audience," she says hugging me again.

"Where's Katie? I need to talk to her," I ask.

"She's in her room I think she wants to talk to you."

I walk up the stairs and knock on Katie's door I hear her say come in and I open the door shutting it after. Katie is crying on her bed with a blanket over her head. She's always been like this after dad died she never wanted anyone to see her cry.

"Hey Katie can I come under there with you?" I ask pulling up the blanket.

"Yes," she says softly.

"It's ok to cry I miss him to," I say sitting her in my lap so her face is on my chest.

"I'm sorry," she says in between sniffles.

"It's ok we both were angry and we took it out on each other."

"Did you go to the theater?"

"Yeah I did," I say. "I actually cried while I was there something I should have done a long time ago. You were right I haven't got over his death but I couldn't when he died I was strong for you and mom so I never really got to grieve I guess I've been holding all of this emotion in for way to long."

"I miss him," Katie says hugging me tighter.

"I do to but guess what I'm doing in 2 weeks."


"I'm directing the pit and you guys are gonna come and watch the play," I say.

"I can't wait this is so exciting," she squeals.

"I know would you like to come to practice on Tuesday with me?"

"I want to be totally surprised so no," she says.

"Ok but your missing out," I tease.

"Yeah yeah yeah," she says getting out from under the blanket.

"I'm gonna get you," I say rushing towards the door chasing after her.

It's finally Tuesday and I'm going to practice right now. I'm actually kind of nervous I haven't directed in a while and I want to do good. I walk into the band room, set the scores on a stand, and sit down.

"Everybody ready?" I ask. I get blank stares from everyone. "Ok let me guess the first song is really hard and you can't seem to get it even though the last song is harder and you have that one down."

"Well come back Kendall," a clarinet player says.

"Lets do hellos later now lets get to the song remember concentrate on the beat," I count off and they start. "Saxes!" I yell cracking a smile. They end up getting the song by the end of it and I cut them off. "Wow you guys remember fast."

We spend the rest of the practice talking about the music and go over the trouble spots. By the end of the night we have perfected the entire show.

"I'll see you at the finale performance good luck," I say walking out the door.

The finale performance is here and everything is ready. I got here early and am now sitting in the pit waiting for the cue to start the music the lights drop and the sound booth gives me a thumbs up and we begin. I can tell everyone in the pit is really trying to stay on beat. The show ends and I'm so proud of the pit they worked their butts off and it paid off.

"In theater tradition we would like the head of lighting, sound, costumes, and pit to come down as we thank you for your help," the director says. She introduces the pit last. "And finally we have Kendall Knight directing the pit for the first time," I walk onto the stage I feel probably how my dad felt a little embarrassed. "Kendall is the son of Will Knight who was our former pit director before he passed away. His contributions to the theater will never be forgotten," she says. "Now lets hear a round of applause for all of our cast and crew. Goodnight everybody."

We all leave I go down to the pit and thank them then I go and find my family. They are all standing by the memorial talking.

"Good job Kendall your dad would be so proud," mom says.

"Thanks now lets get out of here but I for got the score so I'll go and get that while you guys go out and talk to everyone else," I say running back to the pit. I grab the score and walk back to the memorial suddenly something falls out of the score and I pick it up and read the front it says my name on it.

Kendall, if your reading this it must mean you just directed the pit for the first time. If I'm not there with you let me tell you I'm so proud of you. You have a god given talent in music and don't you ever stop. When you become old enough I am going to let you take care of the pit with you as the head director and me as assistant. I can't tell you how proud I am of you never forget that. Love, Dad

I put the letter in my pocket and look at the sign leaving the theater and going to find my family. In my mind I still have the picture of the stone and what it read.

Will Knight- Jan 17th 1977- April 21st 2006

The best father, husband and musician anyone could ever ask for he will always be remembered.

"Music is something that brings my son and I closer and that is why I love it"- Will Knight.

Here's another one shot for you. The song Kendall sang was "Home" by Philip Philips. I hope you enjoyed reading this I absolutely love writing about the boys and their dads. I'm going to start a new story soon so watch out for it. Please comment I reply to everyone so please log in.