The Young Man leans out over the cheap plastic fence, it cowers against the brush, the dingy light spills through him as he looks down into the cul-de-sac. A few gentleman huddle by the apartment hangar, he gives them a wild wave and they return the gesture, one among them approaches him. The gentleman is about the same age as the Young Man, taller, thinner, he leans next to him and looks down into the cul-de-sac as well.
“It is dreadful, the way we are gripped” the gentleman says, peering from side to side, the wood is black and encroaching. The Young Man never raises his eyes, a smile like warm butter spreads across his face, it is short and favors one side.
“I don’t mind it so much, I never have whenever. It grips only for attention, when you go around in it, it will ease up.” The two men stand and turn to face the hangar, it is pointed plastic, red doors on the right side of the hall, white on the left. It is a hideous structure really, you can see straight through to the ridgeway, a paved street that rounds the corner into a cloak of trees with no end in sight.
“We’ve no reason to go out anymore, what we’d needed is here now, who can have the trouble?” The two walk to where the hangar meets the entranceway, the gentleman takes a seat on a milk crate with the others, even up close they seem an amalgamation.
“I suppose, I’ve always found it a beautiful wood. I must be going, have a fine evening gentleman.” They bid him the same and he walks into the hangar, he stops outside of the first door on the right and knocks once.
After a moment a man opens the door, as soon as he lays eyes on the Young Man he takes a calculated step backward.
“How are you old friend?” The Young Man says, his voice utter calm, his smile whipping up again, the Old Friend has settled and returns a bubbling grin.
“I’d wondered when you’d come back around.” he says, their charmed looks continue in a silence, a gust rattles the wood over top, the bare trees sway, their branches splinter and shiver and shake, the hangar rings and winds at their command, there is the sound of pebbles tumbling down the brush to the cul-de-sac, pooling every hour.
“May I come in?” the Young Man clutches himself, the wandering in his face finally shows, he keels slightly, looks up smiling again, plainly.
“Of course you may.” The Old Friend says. The Young man closes the door behind him, it is in the corner of the room, entirely of bare wood, musical instruments tangled along the walls. The Old Friend sits at a slick upright piano beside the bed at the other corner of the room, the Young Man looks about, most curiously at an upright bass, before taking a seat on the bench by the door. He fingers the small acoustic guitar that is leaning on the bench, the strings are loose and clang as he pulls it onto his lap.
The Old Friend opens the rounded cover to the piano, he glides his fingers quickly across the keys, then a slow rhythm, bluesy, a stammer of raucous chords. He looks over at the Young Man, his eyes and head going, nodding without reason. The Young Man looks back, starts to hiccup his mitts against the frets, a few strums, and a clumsy pub song gets rolling.
Together, they are walking downtown and its quiet, early, so the Young Man nearly whispers
“So many instruments, nothing to record with.”
The Old Friend crosses the street, it is snowing and he lies along the sidewalk in a patched quilt all alone
“I have a few different things, I keep them out of sight. Could be in the closet or under the bed, or behind one of the walls, something might be recording, or maybe not, but I listen back and there’s the song”