Chapter 3:

Showing Off

In the Pocket

Sitting at his sparkling new drum kit Dante just sat there holding the drums sticks, staring at them intently, still pondering as to how he managed to gain some sort of power from them.
He flicked the sticks up and down in his hands with his fingers, it felt natural to him even though he'd never done it before, like there was some sort of muscle memory built up.
He then took a deep breath and started to drum some simple fills on the toms.

1-2-3-4, 1-2-3-4- 1-1-2-2-3-3-4-4, 1-1-2-2-3-3-4-4, getting faster and faster.
He stopped and gazed at his hands, holding out the sticks in front of him.
"How on earth am I doing this? I've never played the drums before, is it because I can beatbox? Does that give me an advantage?" he quizzed, biting his top lip with a raised eyebrow.

He placed the sticks onto the snare drum and stood up.

"I wonder what they will say after they see me play" he dreamed, thinking about his friends reactions as he turned towards the steps.  As he started up the steps he heard the front door close.

"We're home!" he heard in the distance.

Dante's mother and sister had just got home, Yuki takes piano lessons after school on Friday's.

"Hello dear" his mother said sweetly as she took off her shoes.

"Hey mom, hey sis" 

Yuki took off her shoes and threw her bag to the floor and went upstairs.

"Hey bro, mum i'm gonna take a shower" she advised, stomping her feet heavily as she galloped up the stairs.

"Mom, I've invited over Ryo and Takumi after school to watch me play, is that ok?"

"Sure dear, keen to show off your new kit are you?

"Well, more like show them how good I can play!" he smiled 

"Yes, you seemed to have picked it up awful quick, you're a natural" his mother cooed as she made her way into the kitchen.

"Thanks mom, they'll be round after dinner probably"

"Not too late though, now go do you're homework, I'm making Kimchi fried rice tonight so I have to make a start now" said his mother as she opened the fridge and started pulling ingredients out.

"All right mom, I won't play for too long I promise"

"No you won't, I dont want you annoying the lady next door again son!"

"Haha sure" grinned Dante as he made his way upstairs, he could hear his sister singing in the shower as he walked into his bedroom and flopped backwards onto his bed.

B T B KT T T B KT T he beatboxed to himself, imagining himself on the drum kit playing the same notes.

"I wonder if I could beatbox and play the drums at the same time?" he thought as he beatboxed simple rudiments.

*Shortly after 7pm*


"I'll get it" shouted Dante as he stood up from the dining table, putting his chopsticks down on his empty plate.

"Well they certainly have good timing don't they??" laughed Yuki, stuffing a mouthful of rice into her mouth.

"Hey guys, come in" Dante ushered as he opened the door to see both of his friends there with goofy smiles on their faces.

"Sup man, mom made me do my homework before I could go out, stupid Maths Algebra!" Ryo spat as he took off his shoes.

Takumi nodded towards Dante as he took his shoes off while looking at his phone.

"Hey Mrs Taikosama, hey Yuki" Ryo called as he walked past the dining room door.

"Hey Ryoku, how is your mother?" Dante's mother responded
"Shes good, she sends her love" he called back as they all walked towards the garage door.

 Dante playfully pushed Ryo towards the door.
"Boys, you're gonna freak out when you see my Uncles kit!" he bellowed, tapping his fingers on the opening door.

"Woah thats so cool!!" they both shouted running down the stairs.
Dante followed by slowly, imagining himself walking down the stairs onto a stage with a packed crowd watching him, he flicked his hair from over his eyes and slowly walked to the kit, the boys were flicking the cymbals and cooing loudly. Screams and cheers entered his mind as he walked around to the kit and picked up the sticks.

"Ready boys?"

"Go for it" Ryo acknowledged as they both sat down cross legged in front of the bass drum on the hard garage floor.
A creepy smile formed on Dante's face as his arms lifted up and slammed down onto the cymbals.  The boys were taken aback from the power and precision the first sound made.

Dante then played his way around the kit, starting with a simple 4/4 boom bap type beat, slowly adding in some swing to give his own style, then after 4 beats played a set of different type of drum fills, his friends gawped in awe, Yuki snuck down the steps and joined them on the floor.

To his friends Dante's hand were a blur as they seemed to make their way around the kit with such accuracy and perfect timing, flam* after flam, fill after fill sweat poured off Dante's grinning face, he finally struck the cymbals with a flourish and stood up, his hair hung over his face.

Breathing heavily Dante flicked his hair back.

"So cool!" cried all three of his audience

They jumped up from the ground, taken aback but what they just saw.

"How can you play like that? Have you been practicing like super hard or something?" said a confused Takumi.

"Yeah you killed it Chops, you were awesome!" confirmed Ryo, whos eyes were open wide and mouth agape.

"So cool!" squeaked Yuki who jumped up and down bumping into Ryo

"That's what i'm telling you guys, I have only played an hour or so, something changed in me when I picked up these sticks for the first time, tell them Yuki"

"Mum hasn't let him play too much no, he seems to have picked it up super quick" nodded Yuki in reply

"So wait, you telling us you have some sort of drumming super power bro?" questioned Takumi scratching his head

"Like I told you, all I did was pick up the sticks and boom I felt like I have been playing my whole life" Dante barked back excitedly

Ryo walked past Dante towards the drum kits throne and sat down on it.

"Well lets test this theory shall we?" he said staring at the drum sticks.

"No wait, I didn't even say you could touch those" shouted Dante leaning towards the gleaming kit.

Ryo picked up the sticks and instantly started convulsing, he moaned and groaned while the rest looked on in horror, Ryo then fell back off the chair and the sticks bounced onto the ground.

"Dude are you ok?" called a concerned Takumi as he ran towards Ryo who was laying on the floor staring at the ceiling. "Dude?" 

Ryo started to cackle loudly, rolling around the floor and Dante stood up straight, glaring at him. Yuki giggled while covering her mouth trying not to laugh loudly.

"Hahaha! you really thought I gained powers from that? I had you there didn't I?" Ryo chuckled, picking himself up of the floor. Dante breathed a sigh of relief and then put his head in his hands.

"You're such a dumbass Ryoku, I guess you're not special enough to gain access to this talent!" he shouted into his hands.

"Am I jealous you can play well? Yes, you are a super good beatboxer, maybe your skills has translated over to the drum kit well, having your experience in timing and beats in general has given you the advantage" Ryo quizzed

"Yeah, you must just be a genius on the drums from you being able to beatbox, that has to be it!" agreed Takumi

"Whatever, I thought you guys would believe me once you saw me play" spat Dante, becoming increasingly frustrated at his friends rejection.

"Well you can certainly play, thats for sure, you should join a band you would kill it on stage!" replied Ryo stamping his foot on the hi hat pedal. "You should play at school, show the girls what you're really made of" he laughed.

"Yeah, maybe you can get us girlfriends too" added Takumi butting in slightly

"Girls, girls girls, thats all I hear you guys talk about, gross!" added Yuki as she made her way out of the garge up the stairs.

"You think Sakuri will notice me more now?" questioned Dante as he turned towards the drum kit once more.

"The way she spoke to you earlier on today, she probably already has" replied Ryo puffing his cheeks and pressing them with his hands.

"Hmpf! Yeah right!" Dante called back as he sat down at the kit.

He picked up the sticks and he could feel his arms tense, his biceps bulged slightly as he squeezed them with all his might and hit the snare drum as hard as he could.

BAM!!! The sound of the snare followed by the sound of rattling commenced, Dante looked down as noticed to his horror his newly precious snare drum had a large hole in the skin where he struck it and the drum stick was stuck inside.

"NOOOOOOOO! WHY????" screamed Dante as he got off his chair and closely examined the newly formed hole.

"Oh shit" whispered Ryo and Takumi in unison, looking in shock towards the reddened face of Dante who was poking the hole with his finger.

"Can you fix it?" 

"No Takumi, I can't just tape this, i'll have to buy a complete new skin, damn it!"

"Well you did hit it pretty hard dude" croaked Takumi, trying not to convey to much blame to anger his friend further.

"Yeah, well I guess I don't know my own strength anymore, you guys want to come to the music store with me tomorrow?"

"Umm yeah sure replied Ryo looking towards Takumi who was nodding in agreement.

"Ok thats that then, you saw my skill and my strength and tomorrow I will fix this mistake" huffed Dante as he flicked his hair back standing up. "Come on guys lets watch some Anime" 

They made there way upstairs, Dante at the rear and he stopped at the top of the stairs to turn the light off and glared back at the drum kit. 

"This is just the beginning of something special, you just wait" 

*A flam is a drum term meaning a note hit very quickly after another.

In the Pocket Cover

In the Pocket