American ED

By The Mauve Lantern

It's 1971. Johnny Woode walks down an old road. He hasn't been down this way for many years, and right now all he wants to do is take in some memories. As he walks past familiar sights, like the old playground and the woods, Johnny starts humming an old tune to himself.

A long, long time ago

I can still remember

How that music used to make me smile.

He stops when he reaches "The Lane", which is really just an alley way between the houses and the woods. Johnny walks over to the boards in the wooden fence that comprises The Lane, and thinks back to a time when children were running through this place, laughing their heads off as they played games or tried the newest fads. He smiles when he remembers them, all his neighborhood friends…but the feeling is fleeting, and Johnny is once again wrapped in autumn's embrace. The 26-year-old man leaves The Lane, bad memories conjured up again.

The man is wearing a flannel shirt and bell-bottom jeans, with brown shoes on his feet, and a vest wrapped across his chest. He has a guitar strapped to his back; it's the same guitar he's been playing on for a few years.

As he walks into the part of his neighborhood called the Cul-de-sac, Johnny sees that the street is empty of kids. No one is riding his bike around; no one is shearing livestock; no one is setting up a lemonade stand. He reaches for the guitar behind his back, and almost takes it off, but he decides that it's not the right time yet. Johnny lets out a heavy sigh, and says, "Whatever happened to Peach Creek?" The man turns around, and walks back to his car; there is still more to see.

And I knew if I had my chance

That I could make those people dance

And maybe, they'd be happy for a while.

It's February 5th, 1959, and 15-year-old Eddward Smith is on his bicycle, on his morning paper route. It used to be a job that he looked forward to, but it's tough being the bearer of bad news. After all, two days ago, three of Eddward's idols died tragically. Holly, Valens and the Big Bopper had all perished in an airplane crash out in some field in Iowa.

But February made me shiver

With every paper I'd deliver

Bad news on the doorstep

I couldn't take one more step

Eddward looks down the street to see how many more houses he has to hit; four more, and then he can be done for the day. "Finally," the boy grumbles, "My task is almost complete."

He deftly throws the papers to the doorsteps, not particularly aiming. "Another day, another nickel," he says wearily, the dreariness of his once-happy job crushing down on him.

Suddenly, as he turns into the cul-de-sac, he is greeted by Johnny Woode, the 14-year-old boy who lives next door to Eddward. The boy is sitting on his porch, tuning a guitar; he looks up at Eddward with sad eyes, and says nothing to him. The newspaper boy knows that nothing needs to be said, not at a time like this. He gives a half-hearted wave to Johnny, and slowly peddles his bike back home.

Eddward enters his house to the smell of his mother's cooking. Mrs. Smith had been on a mission to help her son out of his depression, but nothing seemed to work. As her son walks into the kitchen, she looks up from the stove and cheerfully greets him.

"Good morning, honey!" she says, with a smile plastered on her face. "How was the delivery this morning?"

The boy doesn't look at his mother, and grabs a piece of toast from the table, where his father reads the paper. "Same as it's been for the past few days, mother: dreary and depressing."

His father puts the paper down, and takes his pipe out of his mouth as he tells his son, "Now Eddward, you have to get out of this slump. Life isn't all misery and sadness! I can't even begin to understand why all of you kids are so depressed over a few musicians di-"

A glare from his wife shuts Mr. Smith up as he gives a cough, and tried to cover his mistake, "Uh…passing on. Yes, why are you kids so sad over something as trivial as that?"

Eddward visibly shakes at his father's words as he spreads some jelly on his bread, then some butter, and replies, "What do you expect, father? The day those men died was the day the music died."

He places the toast on a plate, grabs his juice and milk, and leaves his mother and father exchanging worried looks with each other.

It's 1971, and Johnny Woode is reading a paper at a coffee shop in Peach Creek, where he reads about up-and-coming musicians. He pays for his coffee and the paper, saying "Thank you," to the man at the shop, and heads out the door

I can't remember if I cried

When I read about his widowed bride

But something touched me deep inside

The day the music died

It's 1961, and Eddy Wheeler is sitting by himself in his Chevy, down by the old levee. He looks at the seat next to him, and says under his breath, "God damn it," when he sees that the passenger seat is empty.

He looks out at the levee, or rather, what used to be the levee. Now, it had all dried up; the magical place where all teenagers would go was gone.

Eddy let his hand slip off the steering wheel, and then lets his head fall onto the wheel, hitting the horn. The horn begins to blare loudly, but Eddy doesn't move. His hair falls across his tired face as he mumbles, "Hell and damnation."

The young man steps out of the car. It hasn't been working right for a few weeks now, and his old girl finally conked out today, just a few blocks away. He was supposed to meet a few friends over at The Rye, a local bar, but he couldn't get there now, not without a car.

That was the last straw for Eddy. He had had enough trouble in his life; now, he was going to do something about it. The young man had pushed his car, with all his might, until he had reached the old levee where the three of them used to go. The Chevy, Eddy, and Nazz. But those days were over.

Eddy is walking behind the car. All it needs is one more push, and one problem in his life will be gone. Sure his parents will flip, sure his brother will wonder why Eddy had destroyed the car, sure his friends would wonder where he was; none of that mattered now. This had to be done.

He pushes with all his might, pushes with every muscle in his body, until the car moves forward, inch by inch, closer and closer to the edge.

Eddy grunts, and shouts, "Come on, you sonuvabitch! MOVE!" and the car keeps going.

Finally, the front wheels go over the edge, but Eddy refuses to let up. He pushes more and more, and the car goes further and further, until Eddy has to let go and let gravity kick in. The Chevy goes into the levee and flips over on its descent, so that it crashes with a sickening CRRRR-KISSSSHHH.

Eddy falls to his knees, and shouts to the heavens, "DAMN IT! DAMN YOU ALL! I HOPE YOU ALL FUCKING DIE!"

He pounds the ground with his fists, as tears fall from his eyes. "Fuck all of you…all of you sons of bitches!"

So, bye, bye Miss American Pie

Drove my Chevy to the levee,

But the levee was dry.

And them good ol' boys were drinkin' whiskey and rye

Singing, "This'll be the day that I die,

This'll be the day that I die."

It's six months before Eddy Wheeler shoves his car over the edge; the day before before Eddy loses his Miss American Pie.

"I can't keep having the same argument with you over and over, Eddy!" Nazz says as she turns her back to her boyfriend. "I don't have to tell you where I've been!"

Eddy points his finger at her, and shouts, "You're my girlfriend, Nazz, and where I'm from, that means something!"

Nazz replies, "We're from the same place, you jerk…"

This doesn't faze Eddy, as he continues saying, "All I want to know is: are you seeing someone behind my back?"

"EDDY! Of all the paranoid, delusional-"

"Nazz, for the past couple of days, every time I called your house I got the same message. "Sorry, our little Natalie is out." I'm so sick of hearing that you're out!"

The girl being yelled at glares at her boyfriend, saying, "Maybe I was out with Sarah or Jimmy!"

"Puh-leeze! Sarah, maybe, but Jimmy? He's such a flake!"

"He is NOT, Eddy! Leave him alone!"

"All I want to know is this: is it Kevin?"

Nazz recoils, and starts to mumble incoherently. Eddy knows what this means: if Natalie Carpenter, the most confident person ever, begins to stutter, you can tell something's wrong.

Eddy turns his back to her, and whispers, "Just go…"

Nazz reaches a hand out for him, saying, "Eddy, wait."

The boy spins around to confront her, and shouts, "I said GET THE HELL OUT OF MY ROOM!"

Her eyes begin to tear up, and she screams at him, "FINE! I HATE YOU, YOU CHEAP BASTARD!" With that, she storms out of Eddy's room, slamming the door on her way out.

Five minutes later, and Nazz is standing in front of the Smith residence. Her make-up is running, causing black streams to run down her face. She chokes back a sob, and rings the doorbell. A few seconds later, Eddward Smith opens the door, gasps, and says, "N-Nazz? What happened?"

Nazz could always count on Eddward, or as the kids called him, "Double D", whenever she had a fight with Eddy. She looks up into her friend's eyes, grabs his shirt and holds him close.

"Oh, Double D! I th-think I actually (sob) did it this time!"

Eddward wraps his arms around her, and begins to say, "Shh, shh, it's okay Nazz. Everything's going to be fine."

Nazz lets go his shirt, and says, "But that's just it, Double D…I don't know if anything's going to be all right!"

"Come on inside; we'll talk about this over a cup of tea."

He leads her into the kitchen, where he starts preparing two cups of tea.

"It's just that (sob) I don't know what to do anymore…"

Edd glances over at the poor girl, and replies, "Well, heaven knows Eddy can be a bit...harsh at times, but he loves you, Nazz!"

Nazz wipes her face with a napkin, and chokes back another sob. "But Kevin loves me too! What am I going to do, Double D?!"

"You got me. At times like this, I usually turn to the Bible for guidance." He sits with her at the table, and asks, "Do you read the Bible anymore, Nazz?"

"Only when I have to."

"That's a shame. It really helps to have faith sometimes, y'know?"

"That's my problem, Double D: I'm not sure what to have faith in."

Did you write the Book of Love

And do you have faith in God above?

If the Bible tells you so…

At this moment, in 1959, in Eddy Wheeler's bedroom, two youngsters are listening to rock-and-roll records, moving to the rhythm. Eddy and Nazz are hopping around so much that a thumping sound comes from the floorboards as Mrs. Wheeler shouts, "You kids keep it down up there!"

The two kids look at each other, and burst into laughter as they cease to dance. They fall to the bed, where they land close to each other; they exchange looks again, and Eddy and Nazz are laughing their heads off. It doesn't mean anything, it's just a silly something they do.

"Wow, Eddy," Nazz says as she hops off the bed, "These new records you got are great!"

"I know what you mean!" Eddy replies, his slick hair falling in his face. Nazz giggles, and takes her hand to Eddy's hair, brushing it out of the way.

Eddy snickers, and says, "C'mere, you!" and yanks her close to him.

The two embrace in a passionate kiss, full of lust and romance and signifying nothing.

When they break away, Nazz gasps for air, and asks, "So, are you ready for the big dance, Eddy?"

"Well, I've got the moves, that's for sure," Eddy says as he does a little dance, "But the one thing I need work on is my…"

"Your what, Eddy?"

"My, uhm…slow dance."

Nazz giggles, and says, "Oh, Eddy, it's easy! You just take your hands like this, and put them here, and then I'll put my hands here, and now we just move to the music."

They start dancing in a slow embrace, as the music on the record changes to a slower tempo.

"Hey, Nazz?"

"Yeah, Eddy?"

"…I love you."

Nazz looks into his eyes, and replies, "I love you too, Eddy."

Do you have faith in rock n' roll?

Can music save your mortal soul?

And can you teach me how to dance real slow?

One year later, it's happened. Nazz has walked out on Eddy, and has been going steady with Kevin Jones, the high school's line backer. Considered an ace by all, he's the most popular guy in school; he's loved by everyone, except for three young men.

Eddy Wheeler is glaring at Kevin from across the cafeteria. His two best friends are sitting beside him as they all eat their lunches. Eddy tears a bite out of his sandwich, and says, "I hate that son of a bitch."

"Eddy, watch your language!" Eddward Smith had seen Eddy get worse and worse these past few weeks. Something had to be done soon.

Ed Garrett, slow child that he is, says, "Yeah Eddy, you should wash your mouth out with soap."

"Shut up, Ed. I'm sick of that guy taking advantage of everything around here! He bribes the teachers that give him bad grades, he can get any girl he wants, and he never gets in trouble! What a lucky jackass!"

Eddward tries to shush his friend, and says, "Eddy, PLEASE! Watch the language! You know you're not supposed to talk like that in the school!"

Eddy looks at his friend, and bows his head, saying, "I just don't know what to do anymore, Double D. That jerk took Nazz from me, you know that!"

"It's all right, Eddy", Eddward replies as he pats Eddy's shoulder, "It'll be all right. Why, I know what'll lift your spirits! There's a dance going on this weekend in the gymnasium; we can all go!"

The sullen boy picks his head up, and says, "Hey, that's a great idea! My brother always told me that the best way to enjoy dances was to go with some buddies and charm the tomatoes!"

Ed gives Eddy a slap on the back and tells him, "You can be Charmin' Marvin, Eddy!"

With his spirits rejuvenated, Eddy grabs his friends and declares, "Boys, we're goin' to that dance this weekend!"

Three days later, Ed and Edd are waiting in Eddy's living room; waiting for him to finish getting dressed. They needed his car, on account of Ed losing his because of poor grades and Edd deciding he didn't really need a car.

Edd looks at his watch as his foot taps nervously against the ground. "We should get going soon or we'll miss the whole evening!"

Ed merely stares at the wall, until he asks Edd, "Say, Double D? Eddy says to talk to girls about…things. What kinda things?"

"Oh, everyday stuff, Ed! Things like the weather, any movies you've seen recently; in fact, you could talk about Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman! That'd be a great topic starter."

His dopey friend shuffles his feet on the ground, and says, "So…should I talk about my cheese collection?"

Edd slaps his hand against his forehead, and replies, "No, Ed, you should NOT talk about your cheese collection."

"But Sheldon is just starting to get ripe, an-"

"All right boys, let's hit the road!" Eddy walks proudly into the room, wearing a black tuxedo with a pink carnation in the lapel. "Who's ready to take some swingin' chicks to Cloud 9?"

"WE ARE!" The three boys run out to Eddy's pick-up truck and pile inside.

Eddy turns on the ignition and boldly declares, "Gentlemen, this is gonna be a night to remember!"


Two hours later…

Eddy is sitting on the far side of the gym, away from the dance floor. He is all alone at a table: Ed ran off with one of the Kanker sisters, while Edd has spent the better part of the evening avoiding a Kanker sister. Everyone from the cul-de-sac is dancing up a storm out there; hell, even Rolf Krtjygrlfik was on the dance floor, doing some kind of jig.

"Damn it all to hell…"

Well, I know that you're in love with him

'Cause I saw you dancin' in the gym

You both kicked off your shoes

Man, I dig that rhythm and blues!

The evening had started out okay, with the three Eds strolling into the gymnasium, but things took a sour turn when Eddy caught sight of Kevin and Nazz dancing. Eddy had wanted to leave then and there, but Ed and Double D wanted to get in on the sock hop, so they had kicked their shoes off and ran onto the dance floor.

Eddy curses under his breath, and take his leave; if his so-called "friends" wanted a ride, they could go with one of their "girls". He made his way out to the parking lot, but was stopped by a raspy voice that said, "Hiya, Eddy…"

The boy turns to his left and sees Lee Kanker leaning against the stair rail, with a cigarette in her hand. Her polka-dot dress is sleeveless, and goes down to shins; she is wearing her fiery red hair in curls, like usual, and has a heavy amount of make-up on.

Eddy just grunts in reply, not wanting to be bothered by her, not tonight.

"S'matter?" she asks, although she already knows the answer. Everyone knew that Nazz had left Eddy for Kevin, given Nazz's friends were the biggest gossipers in the school.

"None of your business," Eddy replies, "Just leave me alone."

Lee puts her cigarette out, and says, "Come on, Eddy; you have to let this out sometime. Just talk to me. We can go wherever you want."

Eddy stops in his tracks, and looks back at Lee. She's not particularly beautiful, but he could really use someone to talk to. He softly says, "All right, come on."

She follows him with a smirk on her face, and asks, "So, where we goin'?"

"First, we're getting some beer. Then, we're heading to the levee. Got a problem with that?"

Lee's smirk grows as she replies, "Not at all, little man..."

I was a lonely teenage broncin' buck,

With a pink carnation and a pickup truck.

But I knew I was out of luck

The day the music died.

Inside the gym, Kevin and Nazz are dancing in each other's arms, when Nazz looks over at the door, and says, "Hmm."

"What'sa matter, babe?"

She looks up at Kevin, and tells him, "I thought I saw Eddy come in, but I guess I was wrong."

Kevin holds Nazz closer to him, and says, "Hey, listen: Eddy's gone, okay? It's all about you and me now, okay? Don't worry, I'll treat you better than that dork ever did."

Nazz grips her boyfriend tighter as she replies, "I know. I know."

Meanwhile, Rolf stands over to the side with Johnny Woode, tapping his feet to the beat of the music. He turns to Johnny and says, "Ho ho, Johnny-the-Woode-boy, this is a fine night, yes?"

Johnny, with his mouth full of food, replies, "Yep, it sure is, Rolf!"

And the night goes on, with 258 kids having fun in the gymnasium, and two out on the edge of town, completely inebriated and relieved of clothing.

I started singin', "Bye, bye, Miss American Pie,"

Drove my Chevy to the levee,

But the levee was dry.

Them good ol' boys were drinkin' whiskey and rye,

And singin', "This'll be the day that I die,

This'll be the day that I die."

It's 1970, and Jimmy Capp is in his apartment, making sketches on a notepad. Jimmy is twenty-two-years-old, and is addicted to drugs; he has found that when he shoots himself up with heroin, he can become even more creative than usual. In fact, it's the only way he can work these days. It's becoming a problem for him.

At the same time, miles away from Jimmy's apartment, Sarah Garrett is out with several friends at a party in the woods. Sarah's been drinking hard, ever since the accident with her brother; add that onto the stress of school, and Sarah's turned into a complete wreck. The only way she can find solace is with heavy amounts of liquor and booze. It's the only thing that keeps her going anymore.

Johnny Woode, a college dropout, is playing his guitar at some bar or café; he's not quite sure. All he knows is: there is an audience of sheep in front of him. Johnny knows how much sheep love country music, so he opens up with a little ditty, all the while thinking in his mind, "The fuckin' junkie was right! This shit IS just what I needed!"

Now, for ten years, we've been on our own,

And moss grows fat on a rolling stone

But that's not how it used to be…

Right now, in 1963, Nazz Williams is in her dorm room, listening to Bob Dylan. She picked up the record a few days ago, after hearing great stuff about it. It wasn't a lie; it really was something good! "Much better than that old shit from the 50s," Nazz thinks to herself as she listens to the record, "That junk was getting so old."

There's a knock at her door, and she gets up to answer it. It's Eddward Smith, who is carrying a small package with him. He's very jittery, and is shaking from head to toe. Edd is still wearing the clothes he used to wear as a child, only now, he wears a hat over his head, covering his hair.

"O-Okay, Nazz, I b-br-brought the stuff, like you said."

She takes the bag from him, kisses him on the cheek, and says, "Thanks Double D, you're my hero!" Nazz opens the bag on her desk, releasing the ground-up leaves inside.

"P-Please, Nazz, d-don't ask me t-t-to do this for you ag-g-gain! It'ssss too dange-dangerous!"

Nazz looks over at him, and says, "Come on, Double D, you need to relax. Everybody's doing it these days; it's not a problem anymore."

Eddward bows his still-shaking head, and replies, "Well, i-if you say so."

"I know so. Hey, Double D, you want a hit before you go?"

The hat-wearing boy lets out a heavy sigh, and says, "Sure, why not?"

An hour later, the two are sitting on the ground, with roaches littering the floor of the room. Eddward leans against Nazz's bed, and says, "You're right, this music is better than Elvis!"

She giggles and replies, "'Course it's better, Double D; Elvis is so out of it. It's almost embarrassing to be listening to him."

Edd nods and takes a drag on the joint in his hand.

"Yeah, it's only a matter of time until the King falls."

"And y'know what's great about Bob Dylan?" Edd looks at Nazz with a blank stare, and she says, "He sings about stuff that you an' me talk about all the time! He's one of US!"

Eddward giggles, and tells her, "Yeah, I suppose you're right!" He looks at his watch, trying to make out the numbers, until he finally says, "I have to go; I've got a meeting this afternoon."

"Okay, bye Double D!" Nazz waves to him and asks, "Same time next week?"

Edd nods and replies, "Wouldn't miss it for the world."

When the jester sang for the king and queen

In a coat he borrowed from James Dean

And a voice that came from you and me.

And while the King was looking down,

The Jester stole his thorny crown.

The courtroom was adjourned;

No verdict was returned.

Right now, in 1964, three sisters are watching the news from their trailer: President John F. Kennedy had just been shot.

As May Kanker sobs uncontrollably and Marie punches a hole in the wall, Lee just watches as the news unfolded. This was a tragedy, a disaster, like the kinds you read about in school. The ones that weren't, y'know, real.

"Oh God, why, WHY?!" May cries out as she fell to the ground. She had voted for JFK just two years ago, because she thought he was kind of cute. Something like this shattered everything for her. If only Ed were still here…but he was out west somewhere, doing Lord knows what.

Marie continues punching everything in sight, her blue hair getting in her face as she tears the house apart. "GODDAMNIT!" she shouted at the top of her lungs. It was true: only the cute died young.

"Will you two SHUT UP?!" Lee shouted out, "I'm tryin'a watch this!" There was some mystery surrounding things, like the killer and all that. What had happened?

And while Lennon read a book of Marx,

The quartet practiced in the park

And we sang dirges in the dark

The day the music died.

It's a cold day in February, as rain falls from the heavens on a grim event. Six pallbearers carry the coffin to the hole that has been dug for this occasion, as the onlookers bow their heads. Women in the crowd are crying, and there are more than a few men whose eyes are tearing up as well.

The priest standing behind the tombstone shakes his head in disbelief, and thinks to himself, "Poor child…to have died at such a young age. What is wrong with the world today?"

He coughs, and watches as the pallbearers set the coffin gently onto the ground. As they separate to be with their loved ones, three men stay behind and stand with the coffin. "Must be his dearest friends," the priest thinks, "Damn these dark days that are upon us."

The priest opens the bible, and begins to read from under his umbrella, "Man that is born of woman hath but a short time to live, and is full of miseries. He cometh up, and is cut down like a flower. He fleeth as it were a shadow, and never continueth in one stay. In the midst of life, we are in death. Of whom may we seek succor but of thee, O Lord, who for our sins art justly displeased."

A young man with blonde hair clenches his fists, and releases them; he continues to do this as the priest speaks.

"O Lord most mighty, O holy and most merciful savior, deliver us not into the bitter pains of eternal death. Thou knowest, Lord, the secrets of our hearts; shut not thy merciful ears to our prayers, but spare us, Lord most holy, O God most mighty, O holy and merciful savior.

Thou most worthy judge eternal, suffer us not, at our final hour for any pains of death, to fall from thee."

Another young man in the crowd bows his head in shame, knowing that he should have been there for his friend. He cannot contain himself anymore, and tightly hugs the blonde-haired man next to him, tears streaming down his face with the rain, as it falls on his long, red hair.

"For as much as it hath pleased almighty God of his great mercy to take unto himself the soul of our dear brother here departed, we therefore commit his body to the ground . Earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust."

A young woman in the crowd sobs uncontrollably, and her friends on either side of her wrap her in their arms. This whole mess is her fault…she could have stopped it from happening, but no, she didn't.

"…who shall change our vile body that it may be like unto his glorious body, according to the mighty working, whereby he is able to subdue all things unto himself.

"I heard a voice from heaven, saying unto me, write, "From henceforth, blessed are the dead which die in the Lord, even so saith the spirit, for they rest from their labors. Lord have mercy on us. Christ have mercy on us. Lord have mercy on us.

"Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on Earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen."

As the coffin is lowered into the ground, the youngest of the three remaining pallbearers places a wreath of roses on the tombstone. He reads it solemnly:


Eddward Simon Smith


A dear friend

And a loving father

At the Smith residence, Eddy Wheeler turns on a Beetles record. They were Edd's favorite band, after all.

Outside, Nazz Smith is holding a baby in her arms, and is being comforted by Jimmy Capp and Sarah Garrett.

Johnny Woode is tuning his guitar in anticipation.

Marie Kanker is having a good cry with her sisters at The Rye.

Johnny begins to sing a sad song for his friends, who all begin to join along. No one will sleep easily tonight, and who can blame them? A saint just died.

We were singin' "Bye, bye Miss American Pie",

Drove my Chevy to the levee

But the levee was dry

Right now, in 1961, Eddy Wheeler is pushing his car into the dried up levee, while Ed and Edd wait patiently at the Rye.

Them good ol' boys were drinkin' whiskey and rye

And singin', "This'll be the day that I die,

This'll be the day that I die."

In a cemetery on the outskirts of Peach Creek, Nazz Smith falls to her knees in front of the newest tombstone, while Eddy and Ed look on in sadness.

Helter skelter in the summer swelter

The birds flew off with a fallout shelter

Eight miles high and falling fast.

In 1967, Ed Garrett is riding in a van with people he has become familiar with over the past few months. Sitting next to him is Moondog, he is having a toke; across from him is Riverlily, who is swaying to music only she can hear; beside him is Juneberry, who has passed out again. Driving the car is the great Cascader, who takes a long drag on the joint in his hand.

"All right, my brothers! We're almost there! Soon, we'll be with our other brothers and sisters, and we'll bask in a summer of love!"

This was what Ed…sorry, "Monsterman" had been waiting for. Ever since that day last year, he had wanted to get out. Get away, anywhere. But he had to be free.

"Yo, Cascader…can you, like, turn on the radio?" asks Moondog, who has finished his toke.

"Sure thing, my man; sure thing." Cascader begins to fiddle with the radio, and flips through the stations; Monsterman manages to catch a few news bits here and there:

"Reports are coming in about the continuing protest marches in areas-"

"News from Vietnam-"

"Coming to you live from Washington, where-"

"-ight miles high/And when you touch down/You'll find that it's stranger than known"

"Heeeey, The Byrds!"

Monsterman throws his head up, and starts shouting, "Birds!? Where?! Where are the birdies?!"

Riverlily slaps Ed, and says, "Shut up, ya fucking retard. There aren't any birds!"

"Relax guys, just relax," Moondog tells the passengers, "Monsterman, we're talkin' about The Byrds. You know, the band?"

The big lummox fiddles with his frizzy beard, and lets out a long "Ooooooooooooooh…" and remains silent.

It landed foul on the grass

The players tried for a forward pass

With the jester on the sidelines in a cast

Right now, in the fall of 1964, Nazz Williams and Eddward Smith are watching a football game, cheering from their seats.

Nazz looks over to her friend and says, "Thanks for coming out with me, Double D! This game means a lot to Kevin!"

"It's no problem!" Double D replies, "I know this is Kevin's last game, so I wanted to be there for you guys!"

"You're the BEST, Double D!"

The game carries on for a while, and Nazz and Double D are talking to each other about all sorts of things, until it gets to a touchy topic.

"Nazz, you're LEAVING SCHOOL?!"

"Shh, Double D! Not so loud!" Nazz grabs Edd by the arm and pulls him to a quiet area, wher she gives her reasons for leaving.

"It's a whole new world, Double D! It's time for me to take my stand among the great women of our country! I'm leaving the school to join Women's Rights so that we can finally have a proper place in this world! We're changing things, Double D; we're gonna make it happen!"

Her friend looks away from her, not knowing what to say. Nazz grabs Edd's arm, and says, "Double D, please! I need you to back me up on this!"

When he looks into her eyes, she tells him, "I trust you more than anyone I know, even more than Kevin! Please, I don't want your approval, I just wanted you to know that I was doing this. Are you mad at me?"

Edd lets out a heavy sigh, and says, "No, Nazz, I'm not mad with you. I could never be mad at you, you know that!" He takes her hands and holds them in his, saying, "I just want you to be careful out there. It's getting dangerous in this country, and with Kevin going off to join the military, you'll be going down this road all alone."

When Nazz tries to speak again, Edd stops her, and says, "It's because I care about you that I won't let you do this alone! If you ever need anything, ever, you just call me and I'll be there for you."


"Really. And who knows? When I finish school, I might just join you for a protest march!"

Nazz's eyes began to tear up, as she wraps her dear friend in a tight hug. "Ohh, Double D, thank you so much! You're the best friend ever! I can't thank you enough!"

Edd embraces her as well, and holds her tightly, saying, "Just remember: I'll always be there for you."

"I know…I know."

Now the half-time air was sweet perfume,

While Sergeants played a marching tune.

Miles away, in the town of Peach Creek, a younger Ed Garrett has finished loading his stuff into a van. He takes one last look at his old house, knowing that he can never return; his parents have disowned him, and refuse to speak with him anymore. For the past few months, he had been living in their basement, sleeping on a futon. It actually felt good leaving. After all, Edd and Eddy would be fine without him; they were on to bigger and better things, and where was Ed going? All he wanted to do was sit around and smoke all day, not bore himself with useless shit like school.

"Ed, wait!" He pauses before he gets into the van when he hears the sound of his sister's voice.

Sarah runs out of the house with a box under her arm, her long red hair bouncing with each step she takes.

When she reaches the van, she passes Ed the box under her arm and says, "You forgot all your old comics! You couldn't leave these behind!"

"Aww, thanks Sa-"

Ed is stopped by his sister's fist connecting with his jaw, knocking him off his feet.


Picking himself off the ground, Ed says, "See ya, baby sister." He jumps in the van and shouts, "Hit it, guys!"

As the van speeds off with the radio playing the Beetles, Ed looks back and sees Sarah bursting into tears on her front lawn. The red-haired boy takes a joint from his friend in the van, and lights it up.

We all got up to dance,

But we never got the chance!

'Cause the players tried to take the field

The marching band refused to yield.

At a football game that day, Kevin Jones is at the sidelines, resting in the half-time before the game starts again. He's been giving the game is all today, and who could blame him? This was his last game; after today, he was heading off to the military. America was getting more and more aggressive when it came to Vietnam, and he had to be there to do his part for his country.

"Hey Kev," says one of the other players, "Those band guys are takin' to damn long, right?"

"Yeah, those dorks have been playin' for a while…Hey, I got an idea. Huddle up!"

All the players on the team gathered together, and Kevin says, "Okay guys, here's what we're gonna do…"

Two minutes later, the players all lined up on the side of the field, looking like they were going to break into a run. Still, the band played on…

Do you recall what was revealed

The day the music died?

It's 1966, at a protest. Things were going smoothly, exactly as planned. Of course, things don't usually go according to plan…

"I can't believe you agreed to come, Double D!"

"Well, it's the least I could do for you, babe."

"I know, but you usually don't do this stuff. You're at home watching the kid!"

"I promised you I'd do this someday, and I always make good on my promises."

Nazz smiles and kisses her fiancé on the cheek, saying, "I know you do. And you better make good on your promise for tonight!"

Eddward, now in grad school, had decided to finally join Nazz on a protest march. He had some time off from school, and made a date with his fiancé to be with her during this newest protest march. This would be good for him.

Suddenly, they hear a gunshot ring out, and all hell begins to break loose. People start swarming everywhere, trying to get away from the police officers who have stormed into the crowd. In the distance, Edd sees a cloud of tear gas burst from the sea of protestors; he instinctively grabs for Nazz's hand, only to find that it isn't there.

He begins to shout, "NAZZ! NAZZ, WHERE ARE YOU!?"

A police officer bursts from the crowd, swinging his truncheon wildly; it's clear that he is doing more than his job entails.

"Officer! Officer, you have to help me!"



"I SAID GET ON THE FUCKING GROUND!" He brings the truncheon down and clubs Eddward on the head. Immediately, the scholarly man falls to the ground, and receives a brutal beating at the hands of the officer. Mere moments later, the police officer dashes off into the crowd, making his way towards the rest of the protestors, and he leaves Eddward in a crumpled heap on the ground.

As he tries to crawl on the ground, Eddward is trampled by terrified marchers trying to escape the wrath of the police.

Before he passes out, he hears one last sound: "DOUBLE D!"

A day passes, and Eddward has been sent to a hospital. Nazz is sitting by his bed, with both her hands folded; she puts her head against the bed, and begins to pray.

"God, I don't know if you're there…I don't know if you've ever been there, but I need you now more than ever. I did some stupid stuff in my life, too many things to mention. Today, I need your help: it's Eddward. He got hurt when he went with me to that march, and he didn't even need to be there.

"He's a great guy, the best I've ever known. I've never been without him in my life, my whole life, and I don't know how I could live without him! He's sweet, he's kind, and he's so gentle; he's the best man a woman could ask for! We're getting married in June, we've got a little girl, we're even getting all the kids from Peach Creek to show up!

"Please, I can't lose him. I can't."

A weak voice interrupts her prayer. "N-Nazz" whispers Eddward. It's difficult for him to breathe, much less talk.

"Edd, oh thank God you're all right!"

"Nazz…I'm not going to…make it…"

"What do you mean?! You're awake, you're here, they can help you!"

"No…no they can't…it's serious…They can't…help…"

"You have to fight, Double D, FIGHT!"

"No, Nazz…you do…the fighting…you always were…stronger…"

"Only because you were there for me! Please, don't go!"

"I'll…always love you…"


Eddward Smith passed away July 14th, 1966 at 10:29 in the morning.

We were singing, "Bye, bye, Miss American Pie",

Drove my Chevy to the levee,

But the levee was dry.

In 1961, Eddy is on his knees, staring at his car at the bottom of the levee, balling his fists in rage.

Them good ol' boys were drinking whiskey and rye

And singin', "This'll be the day that I die,

This'll be the day that I die."

The sky darkens over the Peach Creek cemetery, as Nazz throws herself on her husband's tombstone.

Oh, and there we were all in one place,

A generation Lost in Space

With no time left to start again.

It's 1969. A cool autumn evening. Over 300,000 flower children are gathering at Altamont Motor Speedway, California. Among them is Johnny Woode, Jimmy Capp, Sarah Garrett, and Marie Kanker; a more motley crew there has never been.

"Sarah," Johnny says, "I'm so sorry to hear about Ed."

"Ah, that dumbass knew what he was getting himself into. Testing out all those drugs and shit, he should be thankful that he found your sister, Marie; he wouldn't have survived that overdose otherwise!"

"Well, that girl loves that dumbass way too much to let him die."

Jimmy starts shouting, "Hey, you guys! The show's starting!"

So, come on, Jack be nimble, Jack be quick,

Jack Flash sat on a candlestick

'Cause fire is the devil's only friend.

As Mick Jagger bursts onto the stage in a billowing red cape, Johnny shouts to his friends, "I can't believe I let you talk me into this! You know I hate this bullshit!"

"Aww, put a sock in it, baldy!" Marie replies, "It's just one fucking show; how bad can it be?"

And as I watched him on the stage,

My hands were clenched in fists of rage

No angel born in Hell

Could break that Satan's spell.

"Jimmy, something's not right!"

"What do you mean, Johnny?"

"Why are Hell's Angels guarding the band?"

"It's a crowd full of acid-droppers and junkies; they need all the protection they can get!"

"Yeah, but sooner or later someone's gonna get hurt an-HOLY SHIT!"

And as the flames climbed high into the night

To moonlight the sacrificial rite

I saw Satan laughing with delight

The day the music died.






He was singing, "Bye, bye Miss American Pie",

Drove my Chevy to the levee

But the levee was dry.

Them good ol' boys were drinkin' whiskey and rye

And singin' "This'll be the day that I die,

This'll be the day that I die."

1971. Twelve years since the day this all began. Ten years since Eddy destroyed his Chevy. Four years since Kevin went to war, and three years since Rolf was forced to go as well. Two years since Ed overdosed a second time, five years since Eddward died, and one year since Eddy was divorced.

In his drive through Peach Creek, Johnny has to make one last stop before moving on: The Peach Creek Junkyard. A place where you could find anything and everything in the garbage, from secret castle fortresses to robot laser weapons. The junkyard had been one of the most treasured places in the eyes of the children.

Now, it reeked of chemicals and all kinds of shit that was being dumped by people these days. Johnny covered his nose and ventured into the landfill.

Passing by mountains of trash, Johnny looks around, but knows what he's looking for, and where it is.

He reaches the very edge of the dump, and a spot on the ground that is marked by a large rock. With all the muscles straining, Johnny pushes the boulder aside, revealing a spot on the ground covered by the letter Q.

The young man starts to dig with his hands, until they hit something wooden. He brushes more dirt away until he sees his treasure: a short plank of wood.

It has a two eyes and a smile painted on the front, although the paint is beginning to fade.

Johnny holds the board up to the sun, and says, "Hey, buddy, long time, no see!"

I met a girl who sang the blues

And I asked her for some happy news

But she just smiled and turned away.

With the piece of wood stowed in his car, Johnny heads back into town for one more coffee. Along the way he passes by a lady who is sitting on the ground, playing a sad song.

"Cheer up," Johnny says as he throws her a quarter.

The woman just smiles and goes back to what she was doing.

I went down to that sacred store,

Where I'd heard the music years before,

But the man there said the music wouldn't play.

Once he finishes his coffee, Johnny goes over to the record store he used to visit as a child. He enters the shop and looks around; right away, he notices something different. The young man asks the older man in the store, "Say, what happened to the listening booth?"

"Heh, another one from the fifties," the man says, "I'm sorry sir, but we took that out a few years ago. People just weren't using it much anymore."

"I see…well, thanks for your time."

And in the streets the children screamed,

The lovers cried and the poets dreamed.

As he walks along the street, Johnny passes by a blonde lady holding her five-year-old daughter's hand. He passes right by her, and says, "Hey Nazz."

She smiles and greets Johnny, and then has little Alice introduce herself to her Uncle Johnny.

The young man smiles after the brief exchange, and thinks to himself, "Cute kid. Looks just like her old man."

But not a word was spoken

The church bells all were broken.

It's 1959, and Eddward Smith is talking to Father Nick, asking, "Why weren't there any bells today, Father?"

"My child, they all mysteriously broke a few days ago! Don't know when we'll ever get them fixed, I'm afraid."

And the three men I admire most:

The Father, Son and Holy Ghost,

They caught the last train for the coast

The day the music died.

On Tuesday, October 14th, Johnny Woode stopped and said hello to the parents of the three Eds. For some reason, he felt that they needed it more than anyone else. Their children were gone, much more-so than the others.

And they were singin' "Bye, bye Miss American Pie"

In a crappy motel in California, May Kanker walks in to discover Ed Garrett passed out on the floor, with a bottle of pills lying on the floor nearby. "ED!"

Drove my Chevy to the levee

But the levee was dry

"I'll be back soon Lee, okay?"

"You hurry, Eddy. I can't raise this kid on my own."

"Don't worry, I'll be home soon."

And Eddy Wheeler leaves on a ship to Vietnam, while a pregnant Lee Kanker watches from the dock.

Them good ol' boys were drinkin' whiskey and rye,

And singin', "This'll be the day that I die,

This'll be the day that I die."

Bombs are going off all around Kevin Jones, as he and his men try to retreat out of the jungle. They were caught off guard, and now they were going to pay for it.


It's too late. The bomb goes off and the world turns white for a second. It's 1970.

They were singin', "Bye, bye Miss American Pie,"

"Is he gonna be all right, doctor?"

"We're not sure, Miss Garrett. The boy's taken some heavy drugs; you're lucky you caught him when you did."

Sarah Garrett lays her hand on her best friend's head, and whispers, "Come on, Jimmy, wake up…"

Drove my Chevy to the levee

But the levee was dry

Marie Kanker is sitting in a crappy trailer, observing all the shit her sister has lying around. "Boy, ain't this a familiar sight?" she thinks to herself.

"Hey, sis, thanks for comin' to visit."

"It's no problem, Lee. So, ya heard about what Eddy's done?"

"Oh no, what did that guy do this time?"

"He tried to rob a convenience store. Armed robbery, apparently."

"Christ, Eddy always was a little on the edge, but to do this something this fucking crazy? Unbelievable!"

Marie nods, and says, "You're lucky you divorced him when you did. He's been strange ever since he came back from 'Nam."

And them good ol' boys were drinkin' whiskey and rye

And singin' "This'll be the day that I die!"

Johnny Woode takes one last look in the rear view mirror, and says to his hometown, "Bye-bye, Peach Creek." Then he speeds off into the distance, not entirely sure where to go anymore.