ON THE STAGE
Arden turns to Ulrich.
That would be my guess, yes.
Arden nods. He grabs the mic and points to the front doors.
A DOOR GUY (30s) in the front slowly walks over to the doors. He grabs one handle, pulls, and...
Outside the club’s entrance is only blackness. Audience members look shattered.
TANK TOP DUDE
No. Shit no!
How are we gonna get out of this?
A BEAM OF LIGHT passes by the front entrance. Then another.
And then CITY SOUNDS fade in, and more lights - headlights! Cars and buses come into view as they pass the entrance.
Cheers from everybody! The Door Guy pulls the second door open wide, showing even more passing traffic.
We made it back!
Of course we did. I told you it would work.
Arden stares at him.
There’s a commotion at the entrance. Everyone turns.
Trent bursts in through the front doors. He struts in, oblivious to all that just happened.
Still in his shades, Trent weaves through the crowd. He snubs everyone in his cocky way.
He heads right up to the stage and approaches Ebaneen. Trent reaches for her, but she pulls back, clinging to Arden.
Babe? What's goin' on?
We’re done, Trent.
He waves her off with a smirk and crosses to the center of the stage where Deen meets him.
What the fuck happened here? Who won?
Deen pulls the mic away for a moment.
You wouldn’t believe the shit that went down.
He pulls the mic back to his mouth and gestures to the audience.
Vehement Volition won the battle! Trent, tell Arden and his band what they can expect working with you and Rotting Corpuscle!
Trent whips on a fake smile as Arden and his bandmates join them at center stage.
Guys, the next album that Rotting Corpuscle puts out is all you! Congrats!
Arden nods weakly and takes the mic.
Actually, since the winner gets to choose...
Ebaneen looks at him quizzically.
...the next Rotting Corpuscle release will be a Dark Divinity album. The world really needs to hear their music. It kicks ass.
Cheers from the crowd. Arden waves the other musicians up onto the stage.
Sure. Whatever. Let’s party!
Everybody get your asses up here for one last metal jam!
All the remaining musicians take the stage. Arden whispers instructions to his bandmates.
Ebaneen gives Arden a sweet smile as she plugs in her guitar. Liza and Paulette stand at Arden's side.
Huh. Look who's not a total loser after all.
You still sing like shit, though.
They walk off. Players share instruments and mics as the messy, driving tune begins. The opening sounds familiar.
Got this collar ‘round my neck
Silver chain danglin’ down
Follow it to its end
My own fingers wrapped around
Vehement Volition holds the song together. They’re on fire.
F.F. shares a guitar solo with Ulrich, who indulges in his beloved hammer-ons.
All my own ways gettin’ old
Same old story I’ve been told
All I’ve got is a
But no one’s got a hold on me
Ebaneen and her bandmates add powerful high harmonies.
Arden smiles, looking completely comfortable on stage.
Deen walks into the midst of the chaos carrying a huge trophy. He tries to hand it to Arden.
Here you go--
He tries to hand over the trophy, but Arden’s too caught up in the moment to even notice.