Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement was intended.
Song for this chapter – Simple Man (Original Version) lyrics by Lynyrd Skynyrd © Universal Music Publishing Group
Thanks for dannibags for suggesting this story for correcting my errors, and for being awesome. Piesmom for making sure that everything is good before it's début.
Things are going to take a terrible turn for Edward during this chapter. Please be aware that drug addiction and problems have always haunted him and remember the last time we heard from Edward, he had taken some of Billy's meds and was passed out on Jake's couch.
To say I was shocked to see Edward Cullen in front of the Riot House was an understatement. I knew there were probably times he was there, but I never had given it much thought. I had seen his face on different magazines. A couple of years ago, the Music Television Channel came on the TV and sometimes I would hear one of his songs on there. I used to wonder what happened to everyone.
After the fated airplane flight that scared the shit out of me, I stopped touring with bands. Never again would you find my ass on a plane. Hell, some of rock's greatest died in plane crashes, and I didn't want to be one of them.
I came back home with money in my pockets and enough to get things moving in the right direction for my family. I started thinking about my time on the road and started penning my own version of events. It was truly amazing the things I had seen and heard along the way.
My sisters and father thought I was crazy when I submitted my words to a couple of magazines. However, no one seemed interested. It wasn't until one of the copy editors, from a magazine I had sent a sample of my work to, contacted me. She said that people would love to read about the things I had seen and done. She quickly pointed me in the right direction and before long, I had a published a book of stories.
When the book sold fairly well, I started watching more and more of the bands rolling in and out of the Sunset Strip and it wasn't long before I started keeping a rather lengthy history. I watched as glam rock had taken over and groups like Poison and Guns N Roses pulled into town. I followed and wrote stories, talked to band members, and played the unofficial historian.
No matter how many times I watched Rock Stars do stupid things and almost die, there wasn't anything compared to the night I found Edward Cullen out cold on my sofa.
I had always been a light sleeper. I guess those few months on the road and the guys always pulling some kind of practical joke on me, I tended to sleep with one eye open. When I heard the medicine cabinet open in the bathroom right beside my room, I figured it was dad with another spasm in his legs. However, when I didn't hear his chair hit the wall like it always did, I began to wonder who was in the bathroom. When I heard Rebecca cough, I figured it was her up and didn't go investigate; I drifted back to sleep.
I was startled awake by the sounds of my sister screaming. I jumped up, straddle the bed, and ran to where the noise from coming from. When I entered the living room, Rachel was knelt down beside Edward, who was now lying on the floor.
"What the hell is going on?" I asked, wondering who had screamed and why. Edward moaned as Rebecca came out of the kitchen with a glass of water in her hand. She knelt down next to Edward, lifting his head trying to get him to drink, but he wouldn't. He looked her dead in the eye, "I'm so sorry, Izzy. I never meant to hurt you," he whispered before he closed his eyes. Rebecca eased his head back down to the pillow. Rachel stood up and motioned me to the other side of the living room as Rebecca rubbed soothing circles on Edward's hand.
"He's been hallucinating the last couple of minutes, and thinks that Rebecca is someone named Izzy. Rebecca screamed when he fell off the couch. I tried to wake him enough to get back on the couch, but we can't get him up. So, I pulled the pillow off the couch and found these," she said handing me Billy's sleeping pills.
"Shit," I cursed under my breath, knowing that Edward had already had too much in his system.
It was then I saw Edward's body start to shake. I jumped into action. I didn't know how long ago it had been since he had taken those pills, but I knew that they needed to be out of his system. I tried to pick him up, but I couldn't. I grabbed the trashcan and brought it over to Edward. Once he stopped convulsing, I planned on trying to get him to throw up the contents in his stomach. Rebecca made sure to keep him from swallowing his tongue. I could see the panic in both of the girls' eyes as we waited for him to stop. I watched the clock hoping it would be soon.
"We have to call someone," Rachel screamed.
"I know," I said, pulling at my hair. When I had went through something like this with Izzy, I panicked more, but I figured maybe he would snap out of it. I mean, he was a rock star and was used to having lots of stuff in his system.
Rachel didn't wait for me to make up my mind and rushed toward the phone in the kitchen. I overheard her frantically telling the ambulance workers everything she knew about Edward and what he had taken during the night.
It seemed like hours before they came rushing into the house. Edward never stopped shaking all over. Once he was loading onto the stretcher, he stopped breathing altogether. Both Rebecca and Rachel buried their heads in my chest as the paramedics tried to save him.
Slowly opening my eyes, I blinked them several times to erase the film that seemed to be in front of them. I tried to move my hands to wipe the film away, but found that I couldn't move them. Pulling at the restrains, I tried to set myself free. I couldn't believe that Jake would do something to me. Leave it to him to pay me back for all the practical jokes that were played on him during the old days on road.
Blinking my eyes again, they finally cleared and I looked around the room. "Shit!" I tried to speak, swallowing against the tube that seemed to be down my throat. "Fuck," I thought. What exactly happened last night?
I tried to focus my thoughts back to what could have possibly happened at Jake's that had landed my ass here, but I couldn't figure out anything. I remembered stumbling into Jake bathroom and finding sleeping pills, but I couldn't remember taking them.
"I see you finally woke up for us," said a young woman who walked over to my bed. I nodded.
"Give me just a moment and we will get that tube out," she said, patting my hand. After the words came out of her mouth, a man walked behind her. My brain was still having trouble getting rid of the fog that clouded my mind. The man instructed me several times on what to do. I tried with everything in me to help him as much as I could. Once the tube was removed, so were the restraints.
"Mr. Cullen," the man said, looking over my chart. I looked up at him and waited for him to speak.
"Do you know what day it is?" he asked, while writing notes on the chart.
"No, not really," I replied because days had been something of a blur prior to seeing Jake, but I also felt like it was Friday night when I spotted him walking passed the Riot House.
"Today is Sunday. You were brought into the hospital three days ago. Do you remember what happened to land you in the hospital?" he asked, still scratching away with his pen.
"No," I replied again because I couldn't remember the exact circumstances around me being here.
"Mr. Cullen, you apparently took a large dose of Halcion. Your heart stopped beating and if it wasn't for Miss Rachel Black, I don't know if you would still be alive at this point."
The fucking sleeping pills! I had apparently taken more than I intended, but I didn't really care anymore. It wasn't like I was doing anything on purpose, but maybe they should have let me die.
"It is my medical advice that you seek help, Mr. Cullen. Your mucous membranes have been compromised and given the history of at least one stent in rehab, combined with the fact you came to us having taken more than legal prescribed to a patient, not yourself, I would suggest checking yourself back into rehab."
"I don't think so," I quipped.
"You don't have to follow my advice Mr. Cullen, but know this … next time you might not be so lucky," he said, raising his eyebrow trying to prove his point, but I didn't see the point. He wrote down a few more things in my chart before he turned and walked out the door.
"When can I get out of here?" I asked the nurse who was cleaning up things around my room.
"I will find out and let you know," she said winking at me and leaving me to my own devices.
Once she was gone, I tried to get out of the bed, but everything in my damn body ached. So, I gave up. So much for going to the bathroom, I thought and reached for the urinal hanging on the side of my bed.
After relieving my full bladder, I turned on the TV and watched the A-Team. It wasn't long after the show went off that I got lost in my mind wondering if my parents knew what I was doing. I thought about the different things my mother had tried to tell me in the past couple of years.
She always told me how one should behave in order for life to work. Hell, she told me that all my life. I never wanted to listen to her and never wanted her to run my life. Too bad it wasn't until this moment that I understood the meaning behind her words.
"Take your time and not live to fast." I never understood at a young age, but she would repeat these words to me often through my teens. I figured she was only saying those things to keep me from doing what I wanted. However, I never took the time to truly analyze the situation. I always did what I wanted with my mother's warning in my ears. I did exactly what she said not to because fast living was exactly what I had been doing since I left Forks, all those years ago. The women, booze, yak, and the pills were always there to make my life so much easier; to make me happier, more sociable, and more of something I only found once in my life.
"Troubles will come and they will pass." But, they never passed when I wanted them to. This was another thing she would tell me along the way, but in my stubborn youth, I would look for ways to solve and only make them worse. Funny how some of my troubles only passed when I had enough drugs in my system. Numbing my brain was my idea of dealing with them. Never dealing with people or problems has led to a lot of my antisocial tendencies, and why I could never fully overcome my stage fright.
"Love would come, once I found that special someone." Maggie Rosenberg broke my heart in the seventh grade. I had loved Maggie from a distance for years, and then she kissed Paul Rogers, I thought I was going to die. She never saw me the way I saw her. I tried to find that love with Kate. Hell, it was a drunken mistake to even consider marrying her. Mom knew that and told me I would never find it with her when she found out we were married.
I was always taught to believe in God. My parents took me to church. I never forgot those value, just pushed them down to do what I wanted. However, I knew that if I couldn't talk to someone about my life that I could close my eyes and pray to the man upstairs. He would always love and understand me better than anyone else.
Closing my eyes and praying, thanking God for giving me life and saving mine in the last couple of days. I begged for forgiveness for my sins and promised to try harder, but I needed him to give me the strength to make it through. I knew I was doing wrong and had ruined my career. I had nothing left, no home, no Izzy, no friends … nothing. I was all alone. Tears streamed down my face as I laid my life out to God, and begged for a second chance at making things better.
I opened my eyes when I heard the door to my room squeak in protest of being open, and watched my mother and father step into my room. Mom looked like hell, her hair was all over her head and her eyes were swollen and red. Dad wasn't fairing much better; his eyes were red rimmed. He appeared to be out of sorts, too.
"Oh My God, you're alive," Mom exclaimed and rushed toward my bed, grabbing me up and squeezing the ever loving shit out of me.
"Thank you," Dad whispered, casting his eyes above his head.
The doctor, who I had seen when I first woke, made me stay two more days. I wasn't exactly happy about it when the nurse told me, but when the withdrawals started, I was happy to stay. Mom and Dad never left my side and even though I knew Dad was missing days of work to be with me, he never complained. Mom on the other hand was driving me totally nuts. She waited on me hand and fucking foot. I appreciated it, I really did, but she was becoming annoying. Not to mention the fact that I was already annoyed by not having something to calm me down anyways, just made her constant mothering much more than I was ready to handle.
When the doctor arrived today and told me once again that I needed to check myself into rehab, I tried to blow him off again. I had tried rehab once before and it didn't last. This time, I would go cold turkey and do it by myself. When the doctor lost the battle with me, he left, wishing me luck. It was then that Mom and Dad started.
"Forget your lust for the rich man's gold, Edward," Mom said. I raised my eyebrow, not understanding her meaning to those words.
"Forget chasing your rock dream, son. It's time to lick your wounds and come home," Dad said, understanding exactly Mom's meaning. I looked out the window of my room not really wanting to acknowledge their words.
"We're not saying you can't ever be a musician, honey. But, something has changed about you in the last couple of years. You've lost your soul and I know if you go to rehab and find yourself once again, you will be satisfied." Mom stroked my hand, making me look at her. "You have to come back to us. You've hit rock bottom and have nothing. Go to rehab … find your soul, find out what is important, and come back to us renewed."
"I don't know how," I said, refusing to look at her and instead focusing on a piece of thread I have nervously pulled from my blanket.
She sighed and reached over to my chest, tapping where my heart was, "Follow your heart and nothing else. I know you can do this, but only if you try. All we've ever wanted for you, my son, is to be satisfied. Please for us, make your life right. Find that special someone you lost and fix you, please," Mom said, as tears poured down her cheeks.
I was never one to handle when a woman cried and specifically the woman who brought me in this world. I hated breaking her heart and making her worry all the time.
"We'll go get lunch while you think about things," Dad said, pulling Mom to his side, but before she left, she kissed me on the top of my head. I nodded and watched as the both of them left the room. I set about getting all of the things I had gotten while in the hospital. I pulled the shitty gown off that showed my ass every time I stood and slipped into my jeans.
Once my clothes were on, I stood and looked out the window, thinking about my options. It was either do the rehab like my parents wanted, or go back to living on the streets of Sunset Strip. At least rehab would keep me straight for a while, but the streets of LA could be brutal.
I didn't having anything else to do; it wasn't like anyone wanted to work with me. So, finding a job would be harder than hell here. Actually, I would probably have better luck going back to Forks and working at the saw mill. Just like Kate had wanted me to do all those years ago. That's when I thought about Izzy again.
Maybe this time, I could make it work and really find out where she had been hiding all these years.
When my parents walked back into my room, I told them I would do the rehab and promised that once it was over, I would head back to Forks for awhile to make sure my sobriety wasn't challenged. LA wouldn't be the best place for me to stay, once I was fresh off the farm because eventually, I would meet up with the same people and become involved all over again. I walked out of the hospital and straight through the doors of the Betty Ford Clinic.
One Hit Wonder
Against the Wind
It seems like yesterday, but it was so long ago. Izzy was so beautiful, and the queen of my nights. She was with me during my darkness as we played along the road. We shared our secrets and she moved something inside of me, which I was too stupid to realize at the time. We burned like wildfire, out of control, but then there was nothing left to burn and nothing left to do.
I remember what she said to me; how she knew I would break her heart. What she didn't know then was I was going to also break mine. God, I can remember how she held me oh so tight. Wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then.
The past couple of years, I've been running against the wind. The years have rolled slowly past and I've found myself alone. My parents do all they can to help me, but it's not an easy life I was used to during my heyday. Everyone I thought were my friends, turned out to be strangers in the end. No one cared or even bothered to check on me while I was in rehab. And, I found myself pulling further and further from who I was. I'd lost my way so long ago, and worked through rehab. After my first stent in rehab, it took a year before I fell off the wagon. And, when I almost died at Jake's … believe it or not I fell off the wagon once more after that. There were so many roads to go down, temptations everywhere, and being alone didn't help my mind when the temptations came calling.
At one point in my life, I lived to be in band. And being a singer, I never worried about paying or even how much I owed to anyone. For once in my life, it was refreshing to not be moving eight miles a minute for months at a time. I broke all the rules and searched for Izzy again and again.
After my third stay in rehab, I finally gave up those drifter days of looking for ways to make me feel like someone. Now, I have too much to think about. I have too many deadlines and commitments, driving me against the wind. I currently work for Wolves Record Label, where I compose songs and work on jingles for commercials and movies. And every day I have to decide if I want the drugs or to leave them alone. I'm older now, but still running against the wind.
A/N: All right … AASS is officially over. I know what everyone is thinking … no HEA. This story was always going to end with Edward having almost died once Izzy was gone. The sequel … One Hit Wonder will pick up a couple of years down the road. I do love a good HEA and generally write them, but I wanted to have a little change. But, follow through to the sequel and I promise you won't be disappointed. Thanks to all the reviews and comments no matter how crazy!