You do not have to be the best. You just have to be.
That is what Johnny had said to me. He held his guitar tight, strap hanging from his shoulder. Behind him, the crowd was roaring, anticipating the man they held so dear took the stage. He put a hand on my shoulder.
"You understand, kid?" His voice was full of gravel when he spoke, amazingly it was still clear and audible over the noise from the audience.
"Yeah," I shook my head. I understood but not really. He was at the top of his game, the apex. I, on the other hand, was nothing. A peon with a dream. And not much else.
"Kid, listen to me," his grip on my shoulder tightened. "You need to trust me, trust the music. Have a little faith. Not just faith like God or heaven. Faith in yourself. You can play, you can burn the strings. I have seen and heard it. You just got to believe."
I felt my eyes welling up. I suddenly hated him. Sure he had faith, multi-million dollar career, hundreds of hit songs, thousands maybe millions of fans. Faith for him was easy. Something that a new kid like me would never have.
He shook me back. "Come on, you are going to knock their socks off." He released me from his grip and took a half step toward the curtain. From the other side I heard the announcer say his name and the crowded roared back. Deafening. He saw my hesitation.
"I don't think I can Johnny, I just can't," I struggled to hold back tears. This was my moment, the dream and here he was handing it to me. The gulf I could not cross that first step. "I.."
He interrupted me. "Dammit kid, you play better than me, this crowd is going to be amazed. Come on, I will be right next to you." He waved for me to follow. "Come on."
My foot lifted and it took every ounce of strength but it landed on the other side. I had taken the step. Johnny threw back the curtain and the lights suddenly blinded me, the crowd roaring approval. The announcer said his name again, but this time my name followed his. The crowd exploded.
Johnny turned back to me one last time, a broad smile across his face.
"Come on kid. We are the wolves."
. . .
Word count: 405
About the 8 Minute Writing Prompt:
The 8MWH is a habit forming program where your aim is to simply write something for eight minutes straight each day, over time this will become a habit. The goal is to provide practice with writing and thus make you a better writer who can put words on paper easier. I plan on posting a short phrase and image each day in the morning and later that evening posting my story. Due to the time limit these will often be incomplete or possibly even suck. If you would like to join me, post wherever you like and add #8MWH to your post. Please remember that your stories can be about anything and the writing prompt may be a title, a phrase in the story, or heck, not even used at all in the story. It is meant to serve as nothing more than an inspiration.