At first, Courtney didn't believe Bryant's concern. Dory could play his emotions out too, but it didn't mean they were real... or worth anything.

He just stood there, staring at her. She looked straight at him, looking for his eyes to hint some sort of an ulterior motive.

"That's none of your business." She finally snapped.

Bryant shook his head, "Y-you're right. Sorry for being... nosy... But actually, it is my business. I work with Dory every day. If he did something to you... I should know."

"You can't really have no idea! I'm sure he does it all the time." Courtney started to scratch the left side of her head. It was a nervous tick she had. She did it whenever she was shaky.

Suddenly it clicked for Bryant. He realized what Dory had done, with a flash of the knowledge rushing over him. "Oh my God... he raped you, didn't he?"

"Good guess." Courtney remarked sarcastically.

"He can be a jerk sometimes, but... Jesus, are you sure?"

Courtney folded her arms again. How could he ask her if she sure? "You can't tell me you didn't know he did stuff like that."

"Listen, the fans might not realize it, but me, Jake, and Dory... we're not all that close. I answered Dory's ad in a newspaper, and the next thing I knew I was the drummer for Writing Pharaoh. Then we blew up around Atlanta - It was crazy. I just wanted to play my drums. When it happened, I still didn't know Dory or Jake all that well. We aren't even friends anymore, but we've pretty much just agreed to keep on playing. We can't break up with all this success. We're in negotiations with freakin' MTV. We'd be stupid to give that up. Nobody would."

Courtney was silenct during his entire spew. Finally, she nodded, "Yeah. But you still had to have known."

"I knew he slept around, but how was I supposed to know he was... doing stuff like that?"

"Like you said... You work with him every day."

Bryant finally looked down and picked up the snare drum that he'd dropped. "What's your name?"

Courtney then realized that she'd never even told Dory her name. He did all those things to her... and didn't even know her name. "It's... Courtney. Courtney Hannigan."

Bryant looked around and noticed that pretty much everybody else had cleared out. Jake was gone, and the groupies had either gone with him or went home. Bryant was attractive and funny, but the girls never wanted to be with the drummer, especially of a local band. And any that did knew by then that Bryant never took groupies home. He wouldn't even look at them.

"Look, Courtney... Why don't you help me get the rest of this stuff out to my car and then we can go..."

"...back to your place?" Courtney asked, almost laughing at his predictability. "So what, you lie to me and act like you care, then you take me back to your place? Do you and Dory have some sick game going - Are you guys passing me around or something? That's so sick and twisted... How do you sleep at night?"

Through Courtney's entire speech, Bryant had a long smirk on his face. "I was going to say out for coffee. I told you, don't make assumptions."

Courtney still shook her head, "I'm not getting in anybody's car that I don't know... ever again."

Bryant smiled again and reached his hind behind his back. He pulled a gun out from the back of his pants and tossed it lightly, and it landed in Courtney's hands.

"If I try to rape you, shoot me." He told her, as he turned and headed back on to the empty stage to get more of his things to put in his car.

Shocked, Courtney slid the gun between her tight black belt and her pants, where it stayed. Watching him walk onto the stage, Courtney could do nothing but follow. "You take a gun with you on stage?"

Courtney grabbed a piece of the drumset as Bryant loaded his other arm with another piece from it. She followed his out the back door, where a black jeep was parked. Bryant set the drums he was carrying down and opened the back door the jeep. Courtney loaded the ones she was holding in, and Bryant did the same.

They took another trip back in and carried more of the equipment out to the jeep, and loaded it again. Courtney couldn't believe herself as she got in the passenger seat without really saying anything.

"I know this really great place a few blocks from here that serves coffee twenty four hours a day." Bryant told her as he turned the key and started to drive.

"Do you normally get coffee at two in the morning?"

Bryant nodded, "Sure. It's practically morning anyway."

"So when do you sleep?"

Bryant shrugged, his hands wrapped tightly around the wheel. "Whenever."

"Wow. That must be cool... I can't do that. I've got classes and everything."

Bryant slowed the car and parked it in the street in front of a small place called "Jasper's Java Joint." Courtney followed him in getting out of the car, and they walked into the building. Courtney completely forgot that she had a gun in her belt, although it was very clear to anybody who looked at her waist.

They sat down at one of the tables. The seats were at least half full, probably because it was the only place open for at least five blocks in any direction.

Sitting down, they waited for the waitor. At first, it was silent.

"You don't have to if... i-if you don't want to, but do you want to talk about Dory?"

I'm getting older and older every day
And I'm working this dead end job
I'm getting harder and harder to love
And I'm living in this trashy home
If nobody can love me now
I don't think anybody is ever gonna
I think I'm gonna be alone forever
I'm getting further and further away
And wearing this fake smile
I know what the voices say about me
I know what people think
I'm not a fallout dropdown angry kid anymore
I'm not the loser with the fat girlfriend
I'm not the loser with the cyber girlfriend
I'm the loser with no girlfriend at all