On The Beat


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Chapter 1


"Hey, will somebody pass the coffee sweetener?" Marilyn Wright asked her fellow musicians. She had blue eyes, and blonde hair in a victory rolls hairstyle, she was in her mid-thirties. Just last week she joined the famous Robert King Orchestra. 

"Sure baby-doll." the piano player looked up from his game of solitaire, Rodney Taylor grabbed the sweetener he was about to hand it over to one of trombone players, when the newest trumpet player, Stephen Lotman took it from Rodney and handed it to Marilyn. Stephen joined last week too-- the show-off. She disliked him very much. 

"Thank's Rod," Marilyn smiled sweetly looking right past Stephen. 

"We'll be starting in fifteen minutes, is everyone ready?" Robert King, the band leader and a trombone player,  asked as he walked over to the round table with all the band members sitting around it. Everyone nodded, except for Rodney. 

Rodney frowned, "Aww King, I haven't finished my solitaire yet." 

Robert grinned and shrugged his shoulders, "Sorry Rod."

Stephen walked over to Rodney, "Easy, you can finish it in a few moves, see here..." 

"Hot dog! Your an ace Lotman." Rodney patted Stephen on the back as he beamed with happiness.

Marilyn rolled her eyes. "Horsefeathers."

The singer who was sitting to her right put her magazine down, and looked at Marilyn. "Gee, I'm glad I'm not the only female in the group anymore, I mean the guys are good pals and all but--"

"May I interject Señora?" another saxophone player and the only Mexican in the band spoke up. "Your khaki wacky and you know it!"  

"Juan! Just cause I flirted with a few guys that don't mean anything." the singer flicked her beautiful black hair.

Juan only shook his head and chuckled, "Señora Sandra... Señora Sandra..." 

"Sandra!" Marilyn exclaimed looking at the red faced singer to her right. Marilyn sipped some more of her coffee, ah, to be in a band finally, she felt like she was with family. 

"Marilyn?" Stephen interrupted her moment.

"Hmm?" She asked looking across the table at the dark haired brown eyed man who was about her age. "what?" 

Stephen started, "Would you like--" 

"No thanks." Marilyn looked down at her coffee, she didn't want to talk to him. 

Stephen looked hurt for a moment then he started talking with Rodney. 

"Marilyn!" Sandra whispered, "don't brush 'im off! He's kinda handsome why don't you have a conversation with him some time?" 

Marilyn shook her head, "What? He's such a grandstand." 

Sandra made a sound of disapproval, "In my book you should talk to him, Stephen looks like a great guy, besides aren't you two both single?" 

"Yes, please lets stop talking about this now." Marilyn turned to look at Sandra. 

"Everyone welcome the famous Robert King Orchestra!" an announcer said. The audience clapped very loudly.

"Beat me daddy eight to the bar!" Marilyn exclaimed happily. Right on time too, she thought. 

Everyone took their place. Robert King stood in the middle holding his trombone smiling proudly, "I'm glad every one could make it out here tonight in the busy windy city! If you hepcats look in your pamphlets that the first song we'll be playing is Music Makers." Then Robert turned to look at his band members, "one, two three, go."


1940's slang used in chapter 1: 

Baby-doll - Affectionate term for female

Hot dog! - An expression of surprise

Horsefeathers - Expletive

Khaki wacky – Boy crazy

Brush off - To ignore/snub

Grandstand – Brag/show off

Beat me daddy eight to the bar - Exclamation of excitement or accomplishment

windy city(first used in the 1800's): Chicago

Hepcats - Admirer of jazz/swing - A really happening/hip person

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Chapter 2

Stephen wondered why Marilyn acted the way she did. She seemed to be a grand girl, though she struck him as a bit of a show off. Stephen joined the other trumpet players, Martin Harris, and Allen Brown. The first song they played was called Music Makers. Stephen looked over for a few seconds at Marilyn she was a great musician, boy did she sound great with the saxophone. 

Next they played Elmer's Tune a song that the Glenn Miller band would play in this song the pretty Sandra Evan sang. Then they played a faster paced song, Take the A Train

Marilyn glanced over to Stephen for a few seconds he was playing the trumpet very well. In this song the audience was invited to the swing dance. Lastly they played another song for the audience to dance to called Lets Dance. After they were done the audience clapped again but this time much louder. After that they walked off the platform to be met by the audience. 

"Señorita Marilyn! This is the second time I heard you play and you still amaze me." Juan walked next to Marilyn as they sat down at a table together.

"Thanks, I'm beat." 

"We can sleep on the bus on the way to Detroit, Michigan." 

"That sounds so wonderful. Whew." Marilyn chuckled. 

"Señorita, would you like to be my friend?" Juan asked smiling. 

"Hot dog! Of course!" Marilyn exclaimed.

Juan laughed. Marilyn, and Juan talked about how they became musicians in the first place, then Juan told her more about the Robert King Orchestra, Marilyn listened intently.

"What's buzzin', cousins?" Rodney's voice interjected.

Juan, and Marilyn looked over to see Rodney, and Stephen standing next to their table. 

"Hey hermano! Nothing much. And Stephen! You were great!" 

Stephen smiled, "Thank you Juan. Marilyn, I had no idea you could play like that!"

Marilyn only half smiled, "Thanks."

"Wow! Are you the two new band members?" A young couple asked beaming.

"Us?" Marilyn, and Stephen asked unanimously.

"Oh yes!" the lady with red hair replied.

"We are." The two musicians replied unanimously, as they both turned to look at each other. Marilyn frowned slightly, Stephen raised his eyebrows in surprise.

Several other people from the audience came to meet them.  They talked for a little bit then were interrupted sudden when Robert King made a shout.

"It's time to board the bus! Were whistl'n dixie!" 

All the band members got their instrument case, and suitcase as they boarded their special bus, every one was ready.

Before the bus started moving Robert King near the front stood up from his seat, and faced his band members with a grin "On to Detroit!"

"To Detroit!" They echoed in unison. 


1940's slang used in chapter 2: 

Hot diggity dog! - An expression of surprise

Beat - Beyond tired

What's buzzin', cousin? – Expression of greetings/What's new

Whistl'n (Whistling) Dixie - Wasting Time


 Juan's Spanish:

hermano - brother

Senorita - miss

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Chapter 3

Marilyn, and Sandra were on the same seat the bus wasn't to big, after all it was two band members to a seat two empty seats in the back held the instruments.

"What a day, I'm tired." Sandra told Marilyn as she took out her compact and started fixing her hair. Sandra had the isle seat and Marilyn had the window seat.

"But you were singing, how can that be tiring?" Marilyn asked, just then she noticed who was seating in the bus seat right across from hers and Sandra's. Martin Harris, and Stephen! Martin had the isle seat and Stephen got the window. Dang. 

"Well-" Sandra started then saw the look on Marilyn's face. "Hey, you look edgy... whats wrong?" 

Marilyn lowered her voice to a whisper, "Stephen is is in the seat across from us!"

Sandra's eyes widened slightly then she giggled softly, "Oh Marilyn, you really should talk to him!"  


"Aww, ease up on him." 

Marilyn crossed her arms, she had her mind set, "Lets change she subject." 

Sandra gave a sigh of exasperation. "Alright fine." 

Stephen didn't notice Marilyn until he head Sandra sigh, he was talking with Martin about baseball. Then he leaned over a little he saw the pretty Marilyn talking with Sandra, he didn't know what they were talking about, but they seemed to have changed the subject. 

"Just a second Martin. Whats cookin' Marilyn?" 

"What of it?" She answered. 

Stephen frowned slightly, he wasn't mad at her he only wished she let go of her pride and talk civilly with him "Well, I was just sayin' hello." 

"Hello yourself. I wan't some shut eye now." Marilyn huffed. Sandra and Martin looked at each other with wide eyes.

"Well then," Stephen said softly, "Have a goodnight." 



1940's slang used in chapter 3: 

Edgy - Overly alert/anxious/nervous

Ease up - Loosen up

What's cooking? - Expression of greetings/What's new

What of it? - Query for 'What business is it of yours'

Shut-eye - Sleep.


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