"No, you don't get it, it really doesn't matter, nor does it make sense," I said, taking one last drag off the burning ciggarette before rubbing it out in the green glass ashtray.
"Oh please O, I know it makes sense. Don't go trying to lecture me on what makes sense and what doesn't - last I heard, you were taking part in some activities that didn't exactly make sense."
I rolled my eyes and leaned back in the foam green chair, the generic old kind that only a recording studio would dare to furnish. The chair wasn't even clean; it smelled of old ciggarettes and scotch, and some other unfamiliar scents that one could only dare to imagine their origins. As disgusting and unkempt as they were, I loved those chairs. John, on the other hand, hated them. He demonstrated his dislike for them just then by snubbing out his burning ciggarette into the fabric of the green wonder chair, leaving behind a tiny round black burn mark, one among the many. Probably all from him.
"What O, you're not going to fight back? That's highly unlike you," he pressed, leaning forward in the green chair, forcing himself to uncross his leg that was draped over his left knee.
"What could I possibly gain by arguing it John? Really? Another argument from you? Do I really need that? I've got quite a few under my skin, I don't need any more of your crude comments to keep me awake at night." In all honesty I really truely didn't feel like arguing with John just then. It was no use. He was going to win in the end anyhow, he always did. I'd known him most of my life, or at least most of the years that counted the most, and in all that time and in all of the bouts we'd had, I'd never even come close to winning even one of them. He was good.
"Oh, come on O, you know I love to hear your opinion!" he coaxed by rubbing my knee in the chair directly across from him.
"John, no, I'm not in the mood. I don't care if your lyrics make sense or not, you're going to use them anyway no matter what I say. You could say that you're the damn egg man and even though no one would know what the hell you were talking about, no one would bother to say 'John you can't use that, it's insane.' No one ever stands up to you John, no one ever says 'no' do they?" I was in an unusually bad mood that day, and John's pestering and nagging for an argument was like salt on an open flesh wound. This just wasn't the time or place or day.
John actually looked physically stunned at what I had said. He sat there, letting the words register briefly before he shot up from his seat and proceeded to scream at me.
"You know what? Lots of people have said 'no' to me in my life! 'Can I go see me mum today auntie?' 'No Johnny, not today.' 'Can I play the guitar auntie?' 'No John, it's not good for you.' 'Can I meet my father auntie?' 'No John, little boys like are better off without people like your father.' Don't tell me I've never heard 'no' before because I have Odette, okay? I've heard 'no' more times than you ever have!" John was up and pacing, waving his arms and yelling like a mad man. He didn't throw anything, or tip something over or break anything, so he wasn't totally mad, just frustrated. I remaind seated and kept my head down, avoiding eye contact with him. "I've seen things, been through things, that you've never imagined! You didn't go to your mothers funeral, did you? No. You didn't spend your nights wondering who your father was, where he was, what he was doing, did you? No. You never went through what I went through, so don't lecture me, miss Scott." By this point he had knocked the green slime chair over and was standing with his back turned to me, left hand on hip and right rubbing his chin.
"I'm sorry John, it's just with - with Francis and all . . . I just haven't been in the best of moods. I didn't mean to set you off, and I know that you know what I really meant. So, what's with all this?" I asked, rising out of my seat and gesturing at his sudden mood change. He turned around when he felt my hand on his shoulder and I saw tears collecting in his eyes.
"It's Paul," he said bluntly and coldly, but calmer than he had before.
"What about him John? What happened?" I asked, bending down to right the fallen chair for him to sit in. He helped me and took a deep breath before he sat down.
"He got married yesterday."
I sat down in my seat and gasped in shock. Paul, the one that I'd been pining away for all these years had gotten married, and without telling anyone. "To that American?" I asked, trying my best to hold back my emoition.
John nodded, "Yeah. Linda Eastman - well, McCartney now. Linda McCartney. Mr. and Mrs. Paul McCartney - shit . . . it just doesn't sound right." Yes it did. It sounded perfect, if only there was one minor change, Linda Eastman replaced by Odette Scott. Paul and Odette McCartney sounded so much better than Paul and Linda McCartney. Maybe it sounded so great to me because I'd rehearsed introducing the two of us like that in my head over and over and over agian, and to have my name replaced by some groupie American photographer just didn't fit the equation. "Hey, Odette, are you okay?" John asked, reaching out to grasp my shaking hands.
"Hmm?," I asked, snapping out of my horror.
"Hey luv, you looked a fright, like you'd seen a ghost! Are you all right?"
I looked into John's eyes and forced myself to smile. I should be happy for Paul, he thinks he's found true love. In Linda, not me. I closed me eyes and for a moment, I was back in time, back to a time when Paul promised me his true love forever and ever, and no one had ever heard of Linda. Back in a time when things were so different. Back when he still loved me, told me I was beautiful and that he would never meet another that was as beautiful as I. I sighed a deep sigh and tried my best to hold back the tears that I felt that were dying to escape.
"No John, I'm fine, it's just, well, the whole shock of it all!" I lied, trying to convince John that I was in fact, okay. He gave me a one over, almost as if he were looking for some sort of evidence to convict me of lying to him, but he gave up and sighed instead of pursuing it. Instead, he wrapped his arms around me and hugged me fiercely.
"You know, the band has fallen apart," he said muffled in my ear. I wasn't surprised. I had been noticing the tense working conditions in the studio, and how everyone was going their own way. John was so serious with the peace cause and ending the war in Vietnam, George could have cared less about it and was completely wrapped up in his religion. Wrapped up so much that Pattie felt neglected by him, so George had his own hands full. Ringo was, well, Ringo was falling apart. He was becoming serious about acting, starring a few lead roles in small independent films and plays, but other than that, and the band, he was lost. He had his family though, more than anyone else. He could always give up the spotlight and concentrate on his family, Maureen and the kids. He had a welcome, warm life there. Paul had his own family now. Linda. Ugh. The name made me shiver. She had a daughter, Heather, from a previous marrige that failed. Rumor had it that she was pregnant with Paul's baby too, so Paul had his own little world happening around him. New wife, new daughter, new baby, new life.... and to truly open up to the new, you have to get rid of the old, the old being the band and, me. John was the only band member not married now, even though he was the first to tie the knot.
"I know John, I know. But life goes on." I wish I could take my own advice. Ever since Paul and I ended our relationship two years ago I'd always secretly believed that we would end up back in each other's arms. But now my dreams were shattered. Paul was married. Married. And not to me. Life goes on Odette, life goes on. Yeah right. What happens when your life marries someone else? Sure, he's going on, but I'm not.
"Yeah, O, life goes on. You're right." John leaned over and planted a kiss on my forehead and pulled away from me to grab his coat from across the room.
"Where are you going John?" I asked curiously.
"Well, if life goes on, it goes on. You've got to let it go, but you've also got to accept it, right?"
"Right, so where are you going?"
"Paul's. I'm going to congratulate him and Linda. If I don't I'll regret it for the rest of my life - even though I don't approve, he DOES love her, and it IS the most important event of his life, and he's my best friend. I HAVE to say something." John pulled his arms through the coat sleeves and I felt my heart drop to the floor as he said his next words. "Do you want to come with me?"
Chapter Two Is Coming Soon!!