A/N: Many thanks to Deanna (deannawincester) for being my beta. All mistakes are still mine.
Many thanks also to Chantelle (spnblargh) for her wonderful art. These boys are too cute, and she does a wonderful job making that obvious. :D The art masterpost is at her LJ (spnblargh . livejournal).
A note about the song lyrics: Clearly, I do not own the lyrics first off. Secondly, I tried desperately to find the "official" lyrics for each song, meaning the lyrics posted on the artist's website or the lyrics in the booklet for the album. This would be why some lyrics are in all lowercase, some punctuation things are odd, etc. I went with the official lyrics for every song that I could. Some songs I couldn't find, however, so I had to rely on what I could find online. (For one I had to actually rely on listening to the song over and over: that one would be Up On The Roof because I wanted to use The Persuasions' version.)
There is also a playlist on 8tracks. I'd link it were it not for 's stupid linking issue. It's titled Up On The Roof.
The entire two hours had been bad, and they all knew it. Benny was being a ridiculously good sport about it, trying hard to liven up the audience with crazier than usual antics. Victor kept a smile plastered on, but Dean's pretty sure everyone could tell he was suffering. And Sam kept shooting Dean looks that were slightly panicky and had that edge of warning that was currently rubbing Dean the wrong way. Dean tried his best not to look and act as tired as he felt, but godammit, if the audience wasn't going to respond, how the hell was he supposed to act?
They leave the stage to a sad sounding "whoo", and Dean barely manages to put his microphone away before swiping angrily at the air.
"Son of a bitch!"
"The hell were you doing with the chair back there, Benny?" Sam's asking, dutifully ignoring Dean's outburst. Benny shrugs.
"Tryin' ta get a reaction outta 'em."
Sam doesn't look impressed, but when does he ever? "Next time why don't you try to not get yourself killed?"
"At least it woulda livened up the audience," Benny grunts.
"Not sure even that would've done any good," Victor mumbles, rubbing at his eyes wearily. "Bet they would've jumped at the excuse to leave."
"Half of 'em left at intermission," Benny adds, and Dean wishes they would all shut up because talking about it's just making him feel worse.
"Guys, we knew what we were getting into when we did this," Sam points out. "A capella groups have a hard time. We're lucky The Vessels got this far for this long."
"You sound like you're saying we're finished," Victor says. The jolt of adrenaline that rushes through Dean's system at that panic wakes him up a bit. He's put too much into this, too much time, too much money, too much blood, sweat and tears (all three quite literally), for it to all just end. Especially on such a shitty note.
And yet Sam's shrugging like the world ends like this every day. "Maybe. We had a good run."
"No," Dean finally speaks up, voice a little hoarse from all that goddamned singing his fucking heart out with no energy whatsoever. "We're not just giving up. There's gotta be something we can do to get us back out there."
"Like what?" Benny asks, sounding curious rather than skeptical which Dean's grateful for.
"I dunno! Shake up our routine somehow. New songs. New look. New something." He looks back to Sam desperately. "Sammy, you're better at this. There's gotta be something."
Sam frowns at Dean thoughtfully long enough that Dean's getting antsy. Finally he nods. "Okay. Yeah, I'll look into it. I'll talk to Bobby and Charlie, too, get their input."
Dean nods curtly, satisfied. "Good. Good." He turns back to Benny and Victor, who are both looking at them expectantly. "We're not finished. Not yet. Not even close."