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Laid Bare

Laid Bare


Description : Laid Bare
Seattle, The Off Ramp

Ten Years Ago

Music, raw and hard like sex, pulsed through the speaker stack, caught the people in front of the stage, as much as it had her, in its grip.

The bass line throbbed through her like a second pulse as the scent of beer and sweat settled into her system. Sweat slicked her forehead and slid down the line of her spine. The muscles in her forearm corded as she played, her fingers finding their way as they had time and again. A secret smile marked her lips as her half-lidded eyes focused on something not visible to anyone else.

Yes, it was a man’s world up there, but she’d kicked down the door with her Doc Martens and she wasn’t giving her spot to anyone else. She loved making music, and it fit her like a second skin. It made her alive.

Her dreads swung forward, partially obscuring her face—adding, she knew, to the overall effect. Her belly, glistening with sweat, slid against the back of her bass where her shirt ended and her low-slung jeans began.

Up there, under the blue lights, she didn’t have to work at it. She was. She was exactly where she wanted to be, a guitar strapped to her body, calluses on her fingers from playing. The muscles in her upper arms were well defined because she hauled equipment around for gigs. There wasn’t any doubt, any self-consciousness. She lived the life she wanted.

Erin Brown had stopped apologizing for wanting things. She grabbed experiences with both hands and gobbled them down.

Even if the band never made it beyond small, local rock clubs, she’d be happy to just keep playing. There wasn’t much more you could ask for in life, and Erin accepted her blessings quite happily and graciously.

Todd took a pull from his beer, one leg bent as he leaned against the windowsill, looking out...
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