(lyrics from "Badly Broken Butterflies" by Yonderboi)
The next day – after their jet landed on the airport – Dave had not much time to sink into his thoughts, because he had to hurry to that interview. But during the trip to the building where the interview took place, he let his thoughts swirl in his head. All the things Martin had told him last night was important to him. He’d have never thought that Martin felt like this for him for such a long time. Dave thought that this love started growing slowly and with time and maybe that he was the one who took the first step. Because – although he’d never mentioned – he had been toying with the idea of the two of them for a long while before their first lovemaking… He didn’t know what evoked this whole thing on his side. Maybe Martin thought that he was able to hide every sign of his emotions, but – although not willingly – he had ambiguous moves and comments. Maybe these things had started Dave’s fantasy. Because first it was just fantasizing, which became some kind of a desire. This was the cause why Dave let their first night happen. He though that that was it, but no, he wanted it again and he wanted more and more. More emotions and it wasn’t about the sex anymore. Now he knew that his question – how it could feel like being with the blonde man – wasn’t just a simple thought. Now that Martin revealed a part of his soul, Dave loved him even more. He’d have never thought that Mart had to live through all those things, that he had to wait for him that long. He had been waiting just for him. This was the trigger for Mart to sleep with other men. And he did this just because he wanted Dave to be happy, to enjoy their encounters. And yes, they were great – he never felt something like this before. Although those times when Dave got to know Sue was hard…
His thoughts were interrupted by a soft jolt when the car he was sitting in stopped and he got out stepping into the building where the interview awaited him.
“Ah, Mr. Gahan, I was waiting for you!” a pretty woman hurried to him in the minute he stepped into the right room “I’m Rowan Petersen and I’ll take the interview” she smiled at him “Please, come in and take a seat!” she waved towards the prepared table after shaking hands.
After greeting the woman he obeyed and waited for the questions with a smile.
“Well, maybe we should start right away. I guess you’re very busy because of the tour so I don’t want to steal too much from your time. Lately there were a lot of bad news around the band. In spring a lot of your fans were worried because of your sickness. How do you feel now?”
“I’m feeling great. But of course I wasn’t happy that we had to cancel all those concerts and that we disappointed our fans, but my mates, my family and last but not least our fans reassured me that my health is the most important. Since then we try to make up for everything. In the last concert leg we tried to put in all the cancelled shows – or at least those which we could rearrange…” Dave began, but he couldn’t pay attention. Yes, Martin had been there for him and told him several times that his health is more important when Dave started worrying how he let down thousands of his fans. Maybe Martin supported him even more than his wife. Jen was scared and cried, she told Dave how happy she was that Dave was alright and how much she and the kids love him, but Martin handled this whole thing differently. That was the time when Dave’d realized that his wife doesn’t know his true self. He was wondering whether Martin’s ex-wife had known Curly’s.
Dave wasn’t surprised when back then Mart announced him shyly that he’d met someone and that it was getting serious. In those times their relationship wasn’t that strong like now. He sees it just now in the light of those things, which Martin had told him last nigh. Curly wanted to get close to him badly, but Dave didn’t let him, he just used him. They had sex when he wanted the pleasures Mart could give him, but he didn’t let him close to him. And Dave made himself believe that this little affair with his mate meant nothing. So it was understandable that Mart searched for other opportunities. “I’m sure he was hungry for love” Dave thought “after I handled him, like a dog.”
At first Dave accepted Sue completely as Martin’s girlfriend, and he was even happy about it. He wanted to feel happy about it. He wanted to feel happy about that Martin was happy and he wanted to believe that it didn’t disturb him that the blonde man would not look at him again the way he did before Sue. But with time truth came out and Dave couldn’t escape his own feelings. He couldn’t stand it. It was awful. He had been already using, but not that badly as at the beginning of the so-called “Devo-era”. He had new “friends” to get drugs more easily. The situation was getting worse. He separated himself from his bandmates and the music. He remarried, but he needed just someone who was like him. He wanted to cause pain for everyone, because he was in pain too. And in the same time he felt the lack of love and everything he couldn’t give to somebody, he gave it to the fans. He searched the get-out from the darkness and pain in them. He wanted someone to love him. And he thought the crowd loved him. He was satisfied… he thought he was. He didn’t want to get out of it…
“Mr. Gahan? Are you okay?” these two sentences interrupted his thoughts and led him back to reality. Probably he sank too deep into his thoughts and didn’t answer a question. To tell the truth he didn’t even know how much time had passed.
“Yes, I’m fine.”
“Then let’s return to the question… So how are things in the band now? Do you enjoy the concerts?”
Dave gave her a wide smile “Yes, of course!”
The interview was long and Dave felt as if his brain had been screwed out. He felt the way back to the hotel endless. He was tired as he walked towards his room, his thoughts running through his head, mixing the memories of the interview and the past.
“Dave… Dave! Hello!” Martin touched Dave’s upper-arm “What’s with you? Don’t you hear me?” he smiled at him, but his smile faded a bit when he saw the faraway-look “Is there something wrong?”
“What? Oh, no, no… It’s just that the interview was long, a real torture” he started rattling with his key in the door.
“Did they dig into your old mistakes again or was it enough asking about your health now?”
“The truth is that I don’t really remember. I don’t know what I’d answered to the questions.”
“Why?” he looked at him, seriously examining Dave’s face.
“Your marriage came into my mind.”
Martin was genuinely surprised, standing in front of Dave’s door.
“Because of the things you’d told me yesterday. And I was just using you for such a long time… And then Sue came. Did you love her?” he looked at Mart a bit sadly.
“Maybe we shouldn’t talk about this here….” he said quietly when a man in suit walked past them.
“Come in” he said and opened the door.
Martin followed him into the room with a serious expression. He didn’t like talking about his wasted marriage. After he sat down into one of the armchairs he looked at Dave again “Why do you want to know it?”
“I just want to know whether you loved her or not” Dave shrugged.
“Of course I loved her. Why wouldn’t I?” he looked at him confused.
“Well… you’ve spent 10 years of your life with her and at least you could live with her in public.”
“What do you mean by that?” his eyes got more serious.
“You’d chosen her because you loved her or because you had no chance to be with me in the way you wanted?”
“What? You’re talking bullshit!” he said and looked away.
“No. The things you’ve said yesterday and the way I’d handled things… it can’t be a coincidence. Until now I’ve thought that you just met her, fell in love with her and that’s all. But no, Mart, you searched for someone deliberately, whom you could put into my place” Dave said, but there was no anger in his voice.
“No. You’re wrong. I’d fled to Sue. I loved you, with love… But you had no intentions giving me what I wanted. She did and I fell in love with her. If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t let her to give birth to my kids…” His voice was low and sad as he was scratching the armrest with his black nails.
“I haven’t said that you hadn’t loved her. Rather… you desired love so much – to give and to get – that you’d chosen that way” Dave sat down onto the bed.
“What’d have you done in my place? You can’t know what I’d felt back then, how much you’d hurt me willingly or unwillingly” he stood up to walk to the window, stroking along the white curtain.
“I’m not accusing you” Dave shook his head “I’ve just realized things now. Why did you wait until now to tell me all these things? Why now? After 21 years? Didn’t you trust me enough yet?”
“I didn’t want to talk about it” he shrugged.
“You’ve spent twice the time with me than with your ex-wife and you didn’t want to tell me these things?” Dave asked quietly.
“There was no need to stir up the past.”
“This is your answer?” he looked up “This? You answer with this to the fact that you had no trust in me, that you didn’t think that it was important for me to know this?”
“I didn’t want to bother you with this too. I wanted to tell you these things a few times, but something always came up which stopped me from doing it. Then I put up with it that maybe it’s better not talking about it, that maybe it wouldn’t do any good telling you this.”
“Really?! Because in that case a lot of things would have fallen into their places and you wouldn’t have liked the bigger picture?!” Dave jumped up and although he wasn’t shouting, his voice was full with anger.
Martin squeezed his eyes shut and hugged himself, showing his back to Dave, as if he was cold. His fingers dug into his own skin, but he didn’t care.
“What’d have fallen into their places?” he gritted through his teeth.
“Maybe if you had told me this a bit earlier, my worst junky period would have never happened?!” Dave barked at him.
Martin’s heart wrung together again “What?” he moaned barely audible.
“What do you think what was one of the causes behind it?! You! You and your wife! Because you didn’t want me, because you refilled my place with a woman, whom you could walk with on the streets, whom you could kiss on the pictures, whom you could love feely!”
“No… this can’t be true…”
“Yes, it is” Dave answered. A vein was throbbing on his neck dangerously.
Martin was standing by the window shell-shocked, still showing his back to Dave. He thought he’d drown from the pain, which filled his soul and heart hearing this! HE was the cause why Dave sank that deep?! He was one of the causes why he poisoned his body?! He was the cause of Dave’s death?!?! NO! No, he can’t mean it! He just wants to torture him! He just wants to punish him! No, this can’t be… No… He can’t be at fault for everything! He can’t just blame it on him! No…
He was still grabbing his own upper-arms with sunken shoulders and he wasn’t able to talk or move. He was grasping for air without a sound.
“I can’t believe it… I can’t believe it…” Dave repeated edgily while he was crawling back and forth in the room. But after a few minutes he noticed the silence “Say something!” he looked at Martin, but no answer came. Dave walked to him animatedly and grabbed Curly by his right arm to turn him towards him… then he opened his mouth in shock “Mart?” he asked and his voice was gentle now, full of worry.
The blonde man’s eyes were red and tears were flowing on his face as he was sobbing and shaking without a voice.
Dave drew him into a tight embrace and let his fingers dig into the thick curls “Shh… it’s alright… it’s alright…” he said quietly.
And this was it for Martin, he couldn’t bear it anymore. His painful sobs came louder now as he buried his face into Dave’s shoulder, but his hands were still grabbing himself, as if he was in a shock.
“I’m… I’m… I’m so… sorry!” he hiccupped after a few minutes, still sobbing hard “I… didn’t… didn’t… know! I didn’t…”
“You couldn’t know. It’s not your fault. I was too weak to face myself. I can thank all of this just for me. It’s natural that you wanted to have a normal life after I’ve pushed you away. You wanted to move on. I’m sorry, I had no right to blame it on you.”
“I can’t stand it… I don’t want to think about this… I love you! I love you so much! I don’t want to think about the ‘what ifs’… and because of me… it’s partly my fault… I was a coward… I’m a coward!” he panted onto Dave’s already wet pullover.
“Mart” Dave lifted his face with a finger so he was able to look into his eyes “I’m here. I’m fine. I’m not dead. It was a long time ago. Don’t blame yourself. I’ve told you, it’s my fault.”
Martin’s teary eyes were full of pain as he held the eye-contact and finally he let his own arms go – he knew that next day the marks of his own fingers’ll be there, but he didn’t care. He just hugged, no not hugged, he clung to the singer.
“Not just yours. And I’m very… very sorry” he sniffed.
“Don’t. I’ve learnt my lesson from it. Don’t distress yourself because of this. Please. Since then you’ve helped me a lot, because you were and are here for me” he smiled.
“And you for me… For example when I’d stopped drinking…” After this it wasn’t a coincidence that he didn’t mention his divorce.
Dave pulled away a bit and wiped away Mart’s tears then took his face into his palms to examine the green eyes “How could I be mad at you?” he asked quietly.
Mart slid one of his hands onto Dave’s hand, which was resting on his face, while the other was still firmly holding on to Dave’s sweater. Finally a short smile appeared on his lips then he was serious again, but now he was much calmer.
“I’m sorry that I’ve never told you this either! I think… we’ll have to tell a lot more to each other…
Dave just nodded then his lips found the other mouth for a gentle kiss.
Martin was sitting in his room, in the middle of the bed. It was early dawn. The first messengers of the rising sun just started painting the bottom of the sky with their colours. Earlier he’d opened the curtains, but didn’t turn on the lights. He was sitting in the dark, his guitar on his lap and he was quietly plunking a long-forgotten melody. A long time ago he wrote this one for Dave too, but he’d never finished it. Its lyrics was somewhere in a drawer in Santa Barbara – unless he threw it away since then.
He was thinking. Dave was right. At the beginning he was more than happy to have Sue and “refill” Dave’s place with her, trying to ease the emptiness and pain he caused. He could remember well those times – it was the first time that he’d hurt Mart badly. The process was long and more and more painful. He didn’t know what’d got into Dave those days. Maybe he’d got bored with him? No – according to his confession from last night. Then maybe Martin was too much for him with his emotions? Did he monopolize the singer too much? But he always tried to pay attention on such things so that Dave wouldn’t feel Mart’s presence or his feelings for him bothersome! Maybe he wasn’t ‘low-key’ enough, maybe love made him crazy… But after all these years he wasn’t able to guess the right cause. He didn’t know whether Dave and Jo’s problematic marriage had counted in this question too or not. Now that Dave objected his heavy drug-addiction to Martin, he wanted to believe that at least he had nothing to do with their divorce. It didn’t matter that later he said he was sorry for saying this and that it wasn’t true, Martin believed in those words, which slid out of Dave’s mouth in his anger. The words Dave’d buried deep into himself a long time ago. And Martin hated himself for this.
He hated that their relationship was full of difficulties! The world outside their bubble have been always lurking around in a frustrating way even during their happiest minutes, threatening them that only one mad move is enough to lose everything… Mart saw several times in his head that someone’ll surprise them in the act, or Dave just gets bored with him and turns away from him. And imagining these things makes him feel the poisoned dagger in his heart. It was worst enough thinking about it, but he had to prepare himself for such things too.
And he was right. Dave’d changed in those times. Something had bothered him, but he avoided talking about it and he drove Mart away and later he literally pushed him and his love away – without any explanation. He couldn’t do anything against it, he locked Mart out and the blond man was so lonely, like never before. And this is why hope awoke in Martin’s heart when Sue came into the picture. First it was just for fun. The both of them enjoyed being with each other and Martin could have felt himself important again. There was somebody, who wanted him, who accepted him – although she never knew his true self, because she wouldn’t have been able to handle it. But he let that relationship develop and he slowly realized that Sue was one of his soul mates too. When this’d got clear to him, he reached for the opportunity of being with her with both of his hands. Because when he was alone with her, the pain Dave‘s behavior and refusal caused had eased. Sue was healing him without knowing about it. But when Martin saw that things were getting more serious and he fell in love with her, another shadow crept over his heart, not allowing him to be absolutely happy and give himself completely to the wonderfully tingling and healing feeling that he loves someone and that someone loves him too… And this shadow was Dave. Again. Always Dave.
He didn’t know how to tell it to Dave. Andy knew how things were between him and Sue and he supported the blonde man to let their relationship deepen, cuz his red-haired friend saw too that her love did good to Martin. But Mart hesitated. He saw that Dave was doing wilder and wilder things – when he met him at all, because the singer was always out, partying in the night, following his own path. He’d told Martin that after the Masses tour he needs some time to put things into their places. And by that he meant the tour and the huge success which gave them full-house stadium shows. Mart was afraid that after all this Dave would not look at him in the way he did earlier, that he won’t touch him in the way he did during their sinful and secret nights. But after a while somehow he grew tired from the situation. His soul was in crossfire. He wanted the future with Sue, but he didn’t want to lose Dave either. But after all the pros for Sue won over Dave, and the fact that she was pregnant influenced his decision too…
This was the last drop to go and face Dave, telling him that he’ll engage Sue and they’ll live together, starting their own family. Martin could be cruel too, if he wanted. Although he never wanted to hurt Dave, but back then he needed to say things out loud to reassure his own decision. He didn’t want to further expose himself to Dave’s more and more frequent and ironic atrocities. He wanted to be strong. He reached the point where he wanted to close this strange relationship with him, because he thought that it was already over. He wanted to see things clearly, so he stepped to Dave and told him the news. He’ll never forget his expression…
He closed his eyes and continued the previous melody on his guitar then he put the instrument onto the pillow when his cell started to ring. He checked his watch. It was only half past five in the morning, but when he saw that his daughter Ava calls him, he picked it up with a smile.
“Hi, sweetie! You’re already up?”
“Yes, you know that I’m an early bird and I’m organizing stuff, anyway!” she laughed “But I hope I didn’t wake you up!”
“No, no. Tell me, why did you call?”
“Well, you know, it’s about mom’s surprise b-day party. You still coming, right? You haven’t changed your mind?”
“No, I’ll catch a flight to
Santa Barbara, as I’ve promised.”
“Great! So listen, there are some things I want to discuss about…” she began and Mart was listening to his daughter’s instructions with a smile. With her organizing skills sometimes she reminded him badly on Sue. Meanwhile the sun was rising between the skyscrapers, bathing the buildings’ windows in a fresh, nearly cold morning light.