Chapter Thirteen

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From the diary of Leo Harwood

We’re back home now after the gig in Brocksburn. In one way the trip was a success and in another way it was a disaster. I keep seeing a picture in my mind of that guy stood at the side of the stage scrambling around all the cables. What a tool. Who does that? Who stands at the side of stage when there’s a gig on and ‘accidentally’ pulls the plug on one of the instruments?

Every time I see his face the whole picture turns red. We should have won that gig. We were the best. I bet it was that James Murray guy, the one with the leather pants on. He looked like a spanner from the start. And what chance did we have with that mumsy woman – Jenny or whatever she was called? Secretary woman. How is she supposed to understand our work?

At least that Kevin guy seemed to appreciate what we were doing. Or maybe he just fancied my sister, in which case I would like to twist his head off his shoulders – dirty old git.

It’s not even the gig in Brocksburn that we’re all about anyway. I don’t want to be as big as Mad Machine – so big no one has ever heard of us. I want our music to be heard across the world. I want us to play in London, Berlin, Paris, New York, Los Angeles. OK, so we’ve never been to any one of these places in our lives – but this is our chance.

Some poxy “battle of the bands” in Brocksburn isn’t going to mean much to us when we’re playing at Wembley. When we do I’m going to write to those judges and tell them what a bunch of fannies they are.

Something did come out of the whole ordeal though. Tony. Yesterday morning, when we were still in the hotel room, I woke up and asked Amber if she wanted to come along to the meeting with him at Cheeseman’s Café. She didn’t seem interested at all.

‘But he invited you,’ she said.

‘Yeah, but, I’d love you to come along with me,’ I replied.

‘I think he thinks I’m just the bit of fluff, what did he call me? Blondie?’ she said.

‘He said you were more stunning than Blondie, and for once I don’t think he said it in a creepy way. I think this guy really gets what we are about. He didn’t care that we didn’t win the competition.’

‘I know, I know,’ replied Amber. ‘But I just want to go to the beach.’

She clutched on to her diary, fiddling with the little lock on the outside, eyebrows pushed in towards each other.

‘What are you going to do without me anyway?’ I said.

‘I just want a bit of time to myself,’ she said.

‘Where will you go?’ I said. ‘What time will you be back?’

‘Aw, Leo, don’t start,’ she said.

‘What?’ I replied.

‘Wanting to know where I am every minute of the day. Keeping tabs on me,’ she said.

‘I’m your brother, I have every right,’ I replied.

‘No you don’t,’ she said, putting on her sulky face.

‘Yes I do. Who else is going to look after you?’ I said.

She dropped down onto the bed right next to me and put her hand on my shoulder.

‘Leo, I’m only going to the beach and I promise I’ll come back safely. You go and see this Tony guy and get things sorted for us, alright?’

‘But don’t you want to find out what he has to offer us?’ I said.

‘You can tell me when you get back,’ she said.

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