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I'll Cry Instead

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Practice had ended long ago, but yet, Ringo was upset. They got into yet another heated argument at the studio, and after the argument was about to end, Ringo kept messing up making the others scream at the poor drummer. Days and weeks passed; the arguments and mess ups continued as the band began to balance on a sharp razor's edge, causing the drumming tecniques to become sloppy. One rehearsal, it seemed as if Paul had enough of Ringo's mistakes since they were leaving for a tour in about a week. During one beginner mistake, Paul exploded at Ringo, which Ringo wasn't used to since he tried to stay out of the band's confrontations.

"Ringo, what the hell do you think you are doing?" Paul exploded to the drummer, "your drumming as if you just learned to hold onto those damn sticks, much less play with them!"

"I-I'm sorry, Paul…it's just-…I-," Ringo stuttered as he knew he was stressed by the fights, but he knew everyone is, "I'm sorry…"

"Ringo, we know you're stressed," John butted in, "but we all are, lad, and we need a drummer who actually can play this."

"How about I take over drumming for this damn recording and Ringo could return to his corner with that tambourine," Paul growled through his clentched teeth, "because all of us already know I'm the best drummer here."

"Now, Paul," George jumped in, "lets just breath for a moment."

"Oh, and here's George…The spiritual one," Paul huffed, "we're letting you play lead guitar instead of me, so back off!"

"You're too full of yourself," George growled and went back to his spot where he had left his guitar.

"So, Ringo," Paul faced the drummer, "either get this right, or we'll send you out for the day, maybe the week!"

Ringo looked Paul in the eyes, and all the drummer saw was pure rage. He saw none of the kind, fun loving lad he knew as Paul McCartney, and deep down it scared him. Ringo silently nodded to Paul, then Paul huffed and walked back the the microphone he was sharing with John. Ringo knew he had to focus, or he may as well be a weak link in a chain that was about to break any second. They started to play again, the song entitled 'Help!' The drum part was crazy, pretty much banging on the drumset, playing as loud and hard as possible. The drum part was planned to sound strong in the background, but with Ringo making the mistakes due to stress, it always sounded wrong. They started the song, and it started pretty well. Ringo kept the beat until the inevitable happened. His aging drumstick snapped during the intense cymbal part. The half that broke hit Paul, of all people, in the back. Ringo quickly frowned when Paul stopped playing to look angrily at the drummer.

"It broke," was all the drummer could say as the bassist walked towards him.

"Out," Paul growled and pointed to the door.

Ringo looked at Paul in shock as tears threatened to fall, but the drummer ran out before the bassist could see any of them, or the pained look on his face. He quickly ran out, and as the door shut, he could hear John scolding Paul.

"Nice going Paul," John scolded, "now we lost our drummer."

"I could be a way better drummer," Paul said as he picked up that sticks, then looked around, "is there a stick that's in one piece around here?"

"I think those were Ringo's only sticks here," George said as he picked up the other half from the floor, "but, there's always tape."

"Tape does not fix everything," Paul growled lowly to George.

"Well, food does," George grinned towards Paul then looked at John, "wanna join? It looks like we're done here since there's only one good drumstick."

"Sure," John grinned and walked out with George, "some food sounds pretty good about now."

Paul frowned and began the cymbal part with one stick, resulting in the only good one to break, "shit…"

~

Ringo quickly ran to the bathroom in the studio and leaned against a sink to view his reflection in the mirror before him. In the mirror he discovered a teary eyed man who'd been broken for too long in the band. The band was beginning to fall apart, but due to his contract, he was forced to stay in the band for longer, as were the others. The fans would also be heartbroken if The Beatles were to break up. Ringo sat under a sink, his hands shaking more vigorously than his whole body. He thought for a second, for a way, any way to get out of the mess.

He lowered his head to cry in his knees, then an idea slipped in his head. He quickly moved to his bag and dug through the contents until he found his goal, his safety razor. He always had it in his drumstick bag in case he needed it if he stayed at the studio over night, which he had done many times. He began to fumble with the plastic, tearing it off and pulling out the small razor inside.

"The fans would miss them," Ringo stared at the sharp razor in his left hand, "but drummers are expendable…"

He pulled up the sleeve on his right arm, revealing the smooth skin on his arm. He slowly brought the razor to it, slicing a small mark in his wrist. He sucked in some air when he felt the sharp pain, then let the air slowly fall past his lips. He stared at the small cut on his arm as crimson began to seep out of it. Rather then cleaning off the blood, he let it travel down his arm. Watching it as it made it's destination to the palm of his hand. He quickly sliced the razor over his arm again, deeper than before. The blood came out a bit faster than before, and the pain almost felt relieving. Tears stained his eyes as he sliced eight more angry, deep cuts into his right arm, feeling the tendency to laugh at his pain. When he was about to make his eleventh enraged slice, he heard someone start to enter the room.

The drummer reacted quickly, yanking his sleeve down as he dropped the bloodied razor in his bag all whilst standing up before the person turned the corner. Soon, he was face to face with the very person who made him feel like death; Paul. Ringo grabbed his bag, quickly walking Past Paul and leaving the bathroom without a word. He got to his car and turned the key, then sat there for a little bit. One way to go was suffocation from sitting in a started car with the windows closed, but he quickly backed down from the idea.

"Not yet," he whispered to himself, "not just yet…"