The lights dim slowly, fading out with the waning sound of the orchestra's tuning, leaving only a single spotlight lighting up stage left. Four tuxedo clad men, their long hair combed and styled cleanly and elegantly, strode quietly out onto the stage. Two swing guitar cases in perfect synchronization with their step, and each man takes his own platform and begins to prepare, still without a sound. A fifth man strides out as the bassist and guitarist plug their instruments in. He's not like the others, clad in rebellious leather adorned with numerous fetishes of metal and glass that flash and glitter like the fine crystal chandeliers overhead. He struts up to the frontmost platform, in full command of crowd and musician. He is in control. He snaps his hands out in front of them, lower slowly as the last remaining light fades to black. From the darkness a rumble begins, percussive patterings mingling with the throaty tones of the low strings and the slightly metallic tone of the bass on the stage, all mingling together to rush over the audience like the rising front of a storm.
The thunder spreads across the frozen tundra airfield, powerful jet engines roaring to life as ground crews scramble to detach fueling hoses and check the bomb-bay doors one more time. Pilots and crewers rushed out onto the airstrip, purposeful ants amid the scramble of a kicked over anthill, clambering into hatches and latching them tight behind, throwing safety straps across belts and shoulders. One by one the ice shrouded night grey forms of the mighty bombers lurch forward onto their final approach, the brazen cries of warning claxons piercing through the deep rolling thunder of the engines.
A single spotlight, a pool of warmth in the forbidding darkness, shines upon the calling trumpets blaring out their defiance of all things, flashing and sparkling off the polished bells as musicians sway with the power of their notes. But still the rumble of bass thunder rises, threatening to swell against and over the rebellious brass, when the rising pitch of wind lifts up to support the movement, swelling up like the keening of a siren against the night. The bass falls back, loping and pulsing like the hearts held captive by their every note, driving the listeners forward, compelling them to listen.
The brass continue to belt out their defiance of the night, daring the listeners to open their ears, and suddenly another light flares, illuminating the leather man. The microphone held like a weapon in his hands, he points one finger out at the crowd now watching his every move.
And maybe we'll come back
To Earth who can tell?
I guess there is noone to blame.
We're leaving the ground,
Will things ever be the same?"
His voice is harsh, untrained, but full of emotion reflected in his face, in the contortions of his jaw and cheeks. The music behind him, flowing out of the darkness, rushes forward to meet him, pushing his message higher, louder, stronger, then cutting completely for one brief moment.
A timer flickers to life on the lead pilot's console, glaring, ominous red numbers digitally ticking away the minutes and seconds to her actions. Her heart beats a fast pulse, a driven rhythm within her chest, and the sirens and klaxons behind her in the technicians' bay seem to grow louder in her ears as she speaks. "Okay, it's the Final Countdown!" She banks her massive aircraft sharply, pulling away as the five minutes remaining flicker by so quickly. The plane squeals a brazen protest at the action, defying her skills as a pilot.
The spotlight shines once more on the trumpets as they beat back the darkness once more with their strident tones, rallying winds and and synthesizer and guitar and strings against the driving line of bass, the heartbeat of the storm and the crowd. The singer kneels on his platform, singing again though quieter.
And still we stand tall.
For maybe they've seen us,
and welcome us, all yeah!
With so many lightyears to go
and things to be found.
I'm sure that we all miss her so!"
He rises to his feet, bowing his head sharply and pointing to the ticking clock hovering overhead, glaring red numbers scrolling away minutes and seconds in the darkness.
Percussive guns begin firing salvo after salvo, showering the stage with sparks and gouts of flame. The pilot struggles to maneuver her massive craft through the hailstorm of missile fire, dodging and weaving amid shrieks of protest the blossoming flames of the exploding warheads. Plumes of fire rise from the ground below, marking the final resting places of proud men and women, valiant soldiers all. She pushes on, one eye on the sky, on eye on that baleful clock still falling away. The prayer for forgiveness on her lips is lost amid the rising howl of fluting sirens and brazen alarms. "It's the Final Countdown!"
Great plumes of pyrotechnic glory illuminate fully the musicians on stage and in the pit, the singer wildly flailing about his platform with the fury of his song, the music pulsing violently, almost malevolently around him, governed by the clock in the darkness.
We're leaving together!
We'll all miss her so!
We're leaving together!"
He drops to his knees as the thunder rocks the very building, staring out at the audience past short hair plastered by sweat to his brow, crying out without the microphone just as the clock reaches zero.
The stage lit up with the brilliance of ten thousand suns, and the final note of the triumphant bass thunder rolled across the entire land.
And then there was silence.