LPfiction

Category Linkin Park

Nothing makes sense anymore by JellyfishLP

Nothing makes sense anymore

Hey readers, it’s me again :)


This is a oneshot that popped into my head months ago. There won’t be a sequel because I need to get this out of my mind, and as soon as I have posted it, I will feel better.


Even though I didn’t know Chester, everything that happened hit me hard and I needed a long time to get over it. There are certain songs I can’t listen to anymore, but I think I’m feeling better about what happened by now. I hope you’re all feeling better, as well. Post Traumatic really has helped me a lot, even though I didn’t have the opportunity to go to one of the shows. Anyway, I hope you’re all doing okay.


I started writing this in September or October last year, but I wasn’t sure if I should write/post it or not because of the topic. It’s pretty sad but also has a bit of humor. To be honest, I cried a lot while writing this, but I think it was necessary.


Warning: mention of suicide and depression. This is fiction!!!


xxxxx


“Damn, Mikey, you got old.”


I wake up from something that feels like a long period of sleep. Everything around me is made of white fog, just like soft clouds. Where am I? And what was that voice? I’m pretty sure I just imagined it, since I haven’t heard it live in 46 years, except in countless videos and audio recordings. It’s my favorite voice in the whole world, and I thought I would never hear it again.


And what is this white room I’m in? It isn’t really a room, I notice as I look closer. It’s more like an open field of white and light blue and pink and gold shiny clouds. I feel fine, although I have no idea where I am. The voice came from behind me, but I don’t dare to turn around. Hot tears are burning in my eyes, and I remember the day I heard this voice for the very last time in my life.


Wait. Am I dead? Is this heaven? I feel better than in the last five years. My backpain is gone and my hands don’t shake anymore. It’s almost as if I could play piano again. I feel…I feel young.


“Ches…Chester?” I ask, my voice shaking and unsure.


“Hell yeah, it’s me. Turn around, Mike.” I hear the voice again, and this time I’m sure it’s his.


As I turn around, I actually see him. Chester is standing in front of me, and I feel as if I’m getting a heart attack. Which reminds me. I did have one. I’m 86 years old, and I died of a heart attack. I remember the unpleasant tingling in my left arm, and how the feeling spread through my whole left body half. I remember the exact moment I felt my heart stop beating.


I was with Anna when it happened, I remember all of a sudden. Oh, no, my dear Anna, what will she do without me? We’ve been married for so long, and now she’s alone. I was at home, sitting in my armchair at the fireplace, and as I felt it, my life flashed before my eyes.


Being so proud to finally being six years old and going to school. Graduating from high school and getting into art school. Meeting Anna. Having my first band. Meeting Chester. The two of us getting to know each other and becoming the best friends in the world. Our band getting more famous. Playing at bigger venues every year. Getting married. The birth of my children. Being a rockstar. Then suddenly, losing Chester. Falling into a hole so deep that I thought I would never get out of it. Eventually getting out of that hole. Making my first solo album. Years later, giving up my solo career and becoming a producer for other bands. My very last concert. All of mine and Chester’s children graduating from high school, some of them graduating from college. Becoming a grandfather. Having my first heart attack three years ago and then, dying of the second.


Was that yesterday? I don’t have a sense of time anymore.


I blink and take another look at Chester. He looks just like he did when I saw him for the last time. Just like he looked in all of my dreams, when I was restless at night and he visited me in my sleep, telling me that everything was going to be ok, even if he wasn’t with me anymore. Don’t people age in heaven? Are we even there? Maybe I’m having a near death experience before it all ends? I saw a documentary about that a few weeks ago…


A second later, Chester and I hug; it’s the best hug I’ve ever had with someone, and I let my tears flow freely down my cheeks.


He feels real, like a normal person. I thought I would never see him again, but here he is, standing right in front of me.


“Is this real?” I ask him, “or is this just happening inside my head?”


“Of course, it’s happening inside your head, Mike. But that doesn’t mean it’s not real.”


“Why are you being so cryptic? Where are we?” I ask although I think I know the answer.


“Isn’t it obvious? We’re in heaven.”


I’m overwhelmed to see him again, I can’t handle my emotions right now, and somehow, all the different stages of grief that I already completed decades ago come crashing down on me again.


Denial and isolation, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance.

All at the same time.


“Why did you do it?” I ask Chester, but I don’t wait for the answer. I have spent half my life thinking about this. And to be honest, I think I know the answer. I thought about it every day and every night. Plus, I knew him better than I knew myself.


I’m angry now. “Why? You had everything! You had the career, the band, the family, the friends! I talked to you on the phone the day before, and you were doing fine! FINE, Chester! Remember that interview where they asked us how we were doing and you said, ‘I’m fantastic’?! I believed that! There were no signs of depression in the weeks before, you said you were getting better!”


As I continue yelling at Chester, he just listens to me until I’ve let out all of my feelings.


“Do you want to know what? I thought about doing it, too. I though about taking my own life, and I thought about it a lot. I was so devastated, I…I didn’t eat, I didn’t sleep. I thought about ways to do it. Pills, I thought, would be the easiest way. Thank god Anna found me before it was too late. After that, I disappeared for a while. I had to go to a mental health clinic, and even after I had left there, I…I saw someone for a few years. A psychologist. Fortunately, this never got out to the public…”


“I’m sorry, Mike. I’m truly sorry I hurt you all so much…”


“It’s okay, Chester. I’d forgive you anything.” I reply instantly, because it’s true.


“There’s something I need to show you.” he says, “Remember that the fans always said that I scream like the devil and sing like an angel?”


I can only nod, still trying to calm down from my outburst.


“That’s what I became. An angel. A guardian angel, to be exact.”



“Excuse me?” I reply, unable to find a logical explanation for any of this.


“Did you ever wonder, why, after I died, nothing else has happened to you? To your family? To the guys and their families? The reason why Talinda has stayed so strong all those years? Nothing bad has ever happened to any of you after that. You’re all still happily married; all the kids made a nice living for themselves and their families. You always asked yourself why you survived that car crash you had twenty years ago. It was a close call, very close. But you and Anna survived, and so did the family in that other car. There were countless moments in all of your lives that could have ended badly, but they didn’t. Think about it.”


All I can do is look at him as I think back to the car accident and all those other situations he talks about. I’ve never believed in angels, or god in general, but I have to trust him on this.


“But…you…you don’t look like an angel. You look just how you’ve always looked. I don’t…I don’t understand, Chester.”


He pulls his shirt over his head and sits down on a cloud, patting the cloud beside him, telling me to sit, too. I sit, and suddenly, giant fluffy white-golden wings spread out of his back. One wing wraps around me, making me feel safe and warm.


“Will I become an angel, too?” I ask, unable to believe what’s happening.


“If you want to.” he says cryptically, smiling at me.


“It’s not true that nothing bad has happened to me, you know? Nothing big, but…it were the little things that broke me apart when you died. Remember that art room in my house?”


He nods, and I continue.


“I completely trashed it. A few days after you…after it happened, I tried to distract myself. I tried to paint something, I tried to put all the pain and anger I was feeling into it, but I messed it up; the painting got worse and worse. At first, I broke a paintbrush, and then this…this wave of feelings just washed over me, and when Anna came back from the store, she found me sitting on the floor in the middle of the room that I had completely destroyed.”


“I’m sorry, Mike. I know how much that room meant to you…”


I tell him about all the times where I’ve missed him the most, and he just listens and lets me talk while I cry into the wing that seems to shield me form the rest of the world. I tell him how I rebuild the art room, and how I used art therapy to cure my pain.


“We played a tribute show for you…it was amazing, and later, everyone asked me how I managed to make it through three hours without crying, but…what I never told any of those journalists is…as soon as I went backstage, I…I cried my eyes out. I ran into one of the backstage rooms and collapsed onto the floor. I just laid there and let it all out. People came to ask me how I felt and if I wanted to talk about it, but I yelled at them and pushed them all away, including Anna. I just wanted to be alone, you know?”


“I know that feeling, Mikey. I know it so well.”


“And I…I started making music again, eventually. I wrote a whole album…16 songs…just about you, in one way or another. I convinced myself to go on a world tour, and I think I helped a lot of people with that. I helped myself, too. It was cathartic…and I…I got over it. I still missed you everyday of my life, but it eventually got better. On this tour, I…I told the audience stories about you. I wanted them to be an active part of my recovery process. Also, I wrote some more songs about you. Songs that didn’t belong to that first album, but that I released, anyway. I just wanted to help people…I wanted them to celebrate you.”


“Mike…I…I know. I watched over you while you were on stage. I heard that album, and also the ones you released later. I heard them while you were on stage and performed them.”


“But…how?!”


“Do you really believe people stop listening to music just because they’re in heaven?”


“Uh…I…I don’t know.”


“Whenever you were playing a festival, or something that was an open air concert in anyway, also that tribute show. I was there, looking down on you from the clouds.”


I don’t know what to think of all this. It’s something I’ve always imagined, but something I logically can’t explain. There’s something else I want to tell him. It’s important to me.


“When I started feeling better, I – again - began thinking about why you did it. There were people who said horrible things about you. Things like ‘suicide is the easy way out’, ‘suicide is weak’, ‘how could he have abandoned his family like this?’, ‘I bet he was on drugs’, and ‘suicide is selfish’. People are mean, Chester. People are horrible, especially when they’re anonymous on the internet and can hide behind their computer.”


“They are.” he agrees.


“So I…I took a long, long time to think about everything, and I came to the conclusion that you were not selfish. I was the one who was selfish. I wanted nothing more than turning back time so I could have you back. I wanted the same that everyone else wanted, but over time, I realized that you were miserable in our world. Not all the time, of course, but in these moments when the depression really hit you, there was no way for you to escape your own mind. I thought that the people who wanted you back just for themselves, like I did, were the ones who were selfish, and I t-told myself that…that, well, I liked to tell myself that now, you were at a better place.”


“I am, Mikey. I guess I am.” he says, and I bury my head in the wing that hugs me.


“Did you know that we never continued as Linkin Park? We had many discussions about the future, but we never made another album. All the guys found something else to do in their lives, and I think that in the end, we all managed to be more or less happy.”


“Yes, I…I did know that. All the times that I visited you in your sleep, and you were having those terrible nightmares, worrying about the future, I was there for you, remember?”


Nodding, I ask “Ches…will I see Brad again? Or Dave? They’ve been gone for a few years, and I…I really miss them. And w-what happens when Anna, and…Rob and Joe…d-die?” I ask, stuttering and sobbing.


“Oh, you’ll see them all again once we pass that gate over there.” he says, mentioning to a gate a few clouds away from us. It’s big and shiny and golden, and I can hear voices whispering behind it. “I’m just here to welcome you into this world. Everyone you miss will see you again behind that gate. Now…can I explain something, too?” he asks, and I nod.


“When I…when I, um, arrived here, I was devastated. I realized what I had done, but I knew there was no turning back. I instantly regretted what I did, I promise you that. I thought about all the people I had left behind. I…I need you to know that when I made that decision all those years ago, I wasn’t myself. I didn’t know what I was doing. It was Chris’ birthday that day, and I…I had a drink. More than one, actually. I had a lot to drink. I was six months sober, but I couldn’t resist. I went to the store and bought beer. I drank all of it to numb my feelings. I remember biting my nails and drinking more and more. I felt so alone, and you know how I got when I was drunk and feeling lonely. I convinced myself that taking my life was the only way, so I…I just did it. I swear I didn’t take any other drugs, Mike. I swear.”


“Yes, I read the autopsy report. I don’t blame you. I admit that I did blame you in the beginning, but I’ve learned to accept it.”


“I’m so sorry, Mikey. So when I got here, the first person I saw was Chris, and I knew that eventually, everything was going to be okay. And I hate to quote one of our songs, but I am somewhere I belong. I’m at peace with myself. And that voice I used to have in my head that made me believe those terrible things about myself?”


“Y-yes? What about it?”


“I’ve never heard it again. In all the time I’ve been here, watching over you guys and welcoming people into this world, I have never once heard that voice again. I finally feel good. Sane. Mentally stable.”


I let myself be wrapped tighter into his warm wings, leaning my head against his shoulder as I cry happy tears. There’s one more question I have, but I don’t dare to ask.


“That question you’ve been asking yourself ever since you started making music again, and that you’ve been worrying about half your life; the question you’re asking yourself right now…” he begins, reading my mind, “Do you want to hear the answer to that?”


“Please.” I say, looking into his eyes that look genuinely happy.


Before he answers, he takes my hand for a moment, squeezing it before we go through the gate that will lead us into the afterlife.


“I am proud of you, Mike. You’ve made me proud.”


xxxxx


Thanks for reading. The two sentences about it being real or inside his head were inspired by the chapter ‘King’s Cross’ from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

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