Ah, the outfit that inspired my one & only (blessedly short) fanfic ;).
Hey, hey, hey - now that you’ve mentioned it, you surely know what should come next…!
OK: Am a sucker for answering to people when they ask/challenge and also for keeping narrative threads together, so here’s my little short-short fanfic (a vignette really) based on the vision above. Wrote it in a haze of an hour or two back in November without edits…’cause the id should be free-range. Very tame tho ;). VERY SORRY if either the lovely @beehivelungs or @ifrija mind me putting this on your post (if so let me know and I’ll gladly delete!).*****
The sound of the crowd out in the arena was big. No, Dave amended: Big was what they’d got from the perky Top of the Pops teenybopper crowds, who were so jazzed just to be on telly they’d cheer for anything. This was massive. A bit scary, really. The exact twin of boulders covered ten-deep in hissing vipers pile-driving down Mount Everest, he decided, half-florid poeticism (he fancied himself a poet) and half-near-terror.
He snagged a can of beer from the green-room cooler as he passed and nervously cracked it as he paused by the stage door. He’d been repeating this sequence for the past unknown minutes, 20 at least, as he waited with increasing impatience for Mart and Andy’s car to arrive and relieve his unacceptable solitude. Alan was here as well, but squirrelled away in one of the confusing warren of backstage spaces that had an upright piano, where he beelined on arriving, insisting on working through some of the trickier keyboard parts from the new album. It appeared their massive gig at Wembley was sitting uncomfortably on their unflappably cool professional too, though his reaction to fear was … predictably professional, Dave pouted. He upended the can and finished it without tasting it, the lager landing uncomfortably in his stomach.
Voices burbled from the corridor and the door banged open, revealing – finally, Dave sighed – Mart and Andy in a suspiciously-giggly little knot. Andy was booming out, continuing his hallway amusement, “…I still think you’re a bloody toss, man. You’re gonna get us all bloody PILLORIED in the press!” and with his dire prediction he turned back and pelted the much-smaller keyboard player with a balled-up crisps bag, staggering and almost collapsing from the force of his deep-throated laughter.
Mart came into the charmless fluorescent room – ducking the clumsy throw easily – his eyes searching and meeting Dave’s at his post near the stage door. Dave noted with strange clarity (nerves, he marveled tipsily, nerves are crazy!) his odd friend’s obvious drunkenness, the flask held loosely in one slim-fingered hand, a garment bag held rakishly over the back of one shoulder, and the striking stage-hair and makeup he had done at home or maybe even in the car on the way. Dave always looked out for what Mart would try next, and apparently tonight he was pulling no punches, with his blond ‘fro mercilessly shellacked into a postpunk helmet and an almost geisha made-up face.
This time it was Dave getting a wad of Fletch’s trash in his direction, hitting him in the face as he gawked. “Hey Romeo, you wanna get your head outta your arse and help our little fashionplate?” Andy laughed again, unceremoniously pulling the flask from his friend, having a long pull and stoppering it before sending it across the room at Dave. He was proud this time to recover nicely (reflexes of a cat, he thought), grabbing it and instantly taking an equal pull despite the protest from his stomach. He tossed it back to Martin who – amazingly given his condition – caught it with the offhand grace of a magician performing a trick.
“Hey hey, so HERE’S the delay, though I shouldn’t be surprised! Your damn costumes, Mart, where’d you have to get THIS one from?” He did a little improvised Groucho Marx eyebrow-waggle, enjoying Fletch’s snicker. Mart – curiouser and curiouser – blushed brick-red (which with the thick black-lined eyes and red lips gave his friend a more and more hectically-female appearance) as he slipped the garment bag on the coatrack to join other stage-wear, staring at it with undue interest.
“Oh, you’ll know when you see the thing. That’s all I’m gonna say,” Andy told him with a lads-sharing-secrets air, putting an arm around his shoulders. “I’m actually gonna draft you for something since you and I are both ready” – he did a rare little kings-of-industry nod to Dave, indicating their dress clothes – “and Cinderella here needs a hand before the ball, ha! I’d normally be glad but I have a little date with a young lady before we’re on so I have to get over to her. Is Ludwig Von Fuckhoven somewhere around?” He snorted.
Dave tossed the ginger-haired giant’s arm off his shoulder with a scoff, getting in a quick jab to the other man’s side and giving himself a point as he danced clumsily away. “Yeah, Beethoven’s off practicing, big surprise. A date, huh? My but we work fast! You gonna giver a goodnight kiss too?”
Andy had a strange dignity as he pushed his glasses up with his middle finger, backing the few steps to the corridor-door and giving the other two men exaggerated air-kisses as he went. Then he was gone.
Dave heard a muffled yet tremendous pounding and for the briefest second thought someone was jackhammering through the walls before he placed it as his exaggerated heartbeat in the sudden relative quiet of the room. Mart was finishing another swig of the flask and meeting Dave’s eyes again on finishing, and something in those indescribably green eyes sent a jolt through the singer down to his fingers and toes. The unknown always provoked Dave to investigate, all his life, so he hesitantly walked over. “So what’s all this about helping you then?” he asked his mysteriously silent bandmate, covering his confusion by grabbing the zipper and pulling the bag open.
His confusion was initially no better with the bag open than shut. A jumble of darkness, ridges, straps, in strange and non-clothing shapes, he gawked classlessly. Mart strangely leapt into verbosity, as if it was deeply important Dave get his side of the story. “It’s no big deal, looks much weirder than it is, once it’s on you’ll get it, but see I just … I just can’t get the damned thing on alone, and if you would be able to just sorta, dunno, ‘zip me up’ as it were….” Mart interrupted himself with “his” laugh, one Dave always paused to hear when it happened, a crazy-out of proportion bark to his excessively soft-spoken voice.
Dave swept into “Mother Hen” mode, patting the smaller man on the shoulder and somewhere deep inside observing that he was just relieved the mighty, mysterious, lady-killing songwriter was clearly more nervous about the fast-approaching show than he was. Seeing the shake in those fine fingers as he fumbled the ridiculous thing out gave him just one goal – to calm his friend. He waved Mart off and put the costume to order, which appeared to be a crazy Frankenstein monster stitching together handcuffs, straps, a punishing women’s corset, some kind of bondage briefs, and – why stop there? – slim bondage pants, all in very-Mart black. He swallowed, suddenly understanding Andy’s opening salvo about them getting pilloried in the press.
Mart was looking at him sheepishly. “Do you think it’s a bit … much?” He didn’t make a move to rid himself of the Bowie tee and shorts he had on, eyes pinned to Dave’s as if the question meant everything.
Without a second thought – the times Dave operated best, he realized sarcastically – he answered by singing back, and he didn’t even recognize what he sang. It was a sexy and simple little melody, something right out of doo-wop, and he made up a little fake-Elvis lyric to match. “Put it on – and don’t say a word…. Put it on – the one that I prefer…”
His musical tactic worked. Mart met his eyes with a strange spark and a quirk in his red, cupid lips – what am I looking at them for? he wondered with only distant concern – and with a violent move pulled his tee over his head and tossed it on the floor. With the same suddenness Mart stepped to him and slipped a quick hand around the back of Dave’s neck, pulling it to him with an insistent strength that contradicted his obvious drunkenness. He dove forward without a fight and they were kissing, passionately, almost angrily, Mart’s other hand on his cheek, his hands feeling the sharp wings of Mart’s shoulderblades with a possessive tightness. They fought for the lead, Dave finally gasping and stepping back after Mart seized his lower lip between his teeth.
Then there was a long minute or two as they panted and risked a few glances at each other. Mart grimaced then sheepishly grabbed his discarded shirt to wipe what was undoubtedly a riot of red lipstick from Dave’s jaw with what seemed to him touching concern. He just smiled and let the guy mother him shamelessly, only asking “Done?” when the blond appraised him with relief and nodded.
Dave surprised himself with a giant, belly-deep laugh that felt completely genuine. “Well come-on, then – the number of straps on that thing we better start trussing you up like a turkey now or we’ll be heading out somewhere around the encore!”