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C. Wallace

No Relation

By David BrandyPublished 3 years ago 8 min read


C. Wallace was born on April 3rd, 1983 to a mechanic and an accountant. His father, the mechanic always valued hard work, and his mother, the accountant put a lot of stress on academia. C. Wallace had no interest in either of these things, he just wanted to play.

He played checkers, then chess, and then video games. Mario Bros. came out the same year that he was born, so he felt a strange closeness to the pixilated plumber. These games lead him to a new world, the world of music.

C. Wallace was completely mesmerized by how the composer Koji Kondo could make such amazing music with such little technology. This lead to an obsession with music. His parents were happy to see him play fewer video games but they became more and more concerned with his inability to do anything but play and write music.

In a compromise, his mother enrolled him in a college-level music class but he excelled less in music theory and more in an innate ability to play anything he heard. He would cheat and use his talent to get by. He could hardly read sheet music despite his teacher and barely passed the class.

One of his classmates took notice of him, a young man by the name of Anthony Wallace. Although he had no relation to C. Wallace, the two of them soon seemed to be like brothers. Anthony even started to use only his first initial and his last name. With that C. Wallace and A. Wallace, started a band called "No Relation" and they immediately got local traction.

A. Wallace kept C. in check as much as he could, but it wasn't easy. One day when they were walking out of a store a car almost hit C. Wallace, but instead of trying to move out of the way, he just stood there giving the car the finger.

"What the hell man?" A. Wallace asked.

C. Wallace just laughed.

The two of them played in bars at first, then they started to get invited to open for larger groups at larger venues. C. Wallace's ability to play so many different instruments, and so very well, always caught the attention of the crowd. Everyone fell in love with them, except C. Wallace's parents.


It was the February of 2000 when the tour bus rolled to the Wallace residence. A. Wallace was already on board and they were here to "break C. Wallace out of jail." Which just meant that they were gonna wait for him to sneak out in the dark of night.

"Wait, his parents really won't let him come?" Asked the lead singer of a heavy metal band.

"No, they aren't a huge fan of the life he wants to lead." Said A. Wallace.

"The hell is wrong with them?" Asked the rocker.

"Right?" Said A. Wallace.

"So, what does the "C" stand for?"

"That is top secret."

"My left nut it is, spill it."

A. Wallace opened his mouth to speak when C. Wallace came running around the corner with his dad tailing him wearing nothing but a robe. They could hear screaming from his dad, something about how he isn't an adult yet. The rocker laughed as a string of profanities flew from his dad's mouth, then C. Wallace busted through the van's door shouting, "DRIVE!!"

His father continued to pursue even as the van began to peel out. The young men in the van were having the time of their lives when C. Wallace's dad shouted something that hit home for C.


After that lung buster, his father put his hands on his knees and realized his twig and berries were showing. The van grew silent and the rocker tried to put his hand on C. Wallace's shoulder and get a punch in the jaw for his kindness.


There is something romantic about living on the road, but it isn't romantic enough to always enjoy a smelly van full of sweaty musicians. A. Wallace did his best to stay civilized, but C. Wallace went into full party mode. He played hard, then played even harder. He may have only been 17 but there was always access to booze, drugs, and of course women.

"Hey A." C. Wallace called out.

"Yeah, C. what's up?"

"Did I ever tell you that I had my first kiss when I was 8?"

"What?!" A. Wallace said surprised. He had been nearly falling asleep at the wheel for the night drive shift but now he was wide awake.

"Yeah, it was at church and she was 18."

"No, really?! Dude."

"Right?" C. chuckled, "It was sorta messed up."

"Sorta? You okay bro?"

"She wanted the tiny C. Wallace."

"That isn't an answer to the question."

C. Wallace laughed and then pretended to fall asleep.


"No Relation" got their first big break in 2002 when a moderately larger record label offered a deal. The only problem was that this deal came with a stipulation, they had to add a third member of the label's choosing. They had someone lined up for them, a solo act that they felt would be a perfect fit.

C. had the raw talent, A. was the book worm but this new guy, Robin Douglas, he had the showmanship as well as talent. A. could tell that this was going to be perfect but C. lead with a not-so-kind nickname.

"R. Dingus, the displeasure is all mine." C. said, without extending a hand.

"Ah," R0bin said, with a smile, "I heard that you would be a problem, but that's okay."

Robin went to reach his arms around the two men but when he did C. took a swing at him. With a duck and a well-placed kick, C. Wallace was on his back. It was the first time that A. Wallace had ever seen his friend be beaten.

"Now, now," Robin said, offering a hand to help C. up, "Name-calling is one thing, and I am okay with that, but there will be no violence."

C. just stared back until A. offered his hand and C. took it. After the initial meeting, they had parted ways. C. had almost not signed on the dotted line until he saw what he would be getting paid.


"How are the dogs?" C. Wallace asked his mom through the phone as he stood in his hotel suite overlooking a stunning view of the Chicago skyline.

"They are good." His mother said, quietly.

C. Wallace knew that there was something else going on, but he didn't want to hear it, "And the plants?"

"C. I have to tell you something."

"Don't make me hang up."

"Your father-" His mom started to say, but he hung up on her as soon as she said the word. A tear started to form in the corner of his eye, but he wiped it before it had a chance of streaming down his face.

"What's the matter, babe?" Asked a female voice.

"Nothing, I'll be in bed soon."

"Was that your mom?"

"Go to bed."

The woman's name was Ella and she came over to him and put her hand on his arm, but he didn't pull away. He didn't even swear at her. She had come into his life only a week ago, but somehow she had found her way into his heart, she was the first person to ever do this.

"Talk to me," Ella said calmly.

C. said nothing, but instead took her hand and lead her to his bag. Even in a week, she had noticed that he was very attached to this bag. He would protect it with his life, now he opened it to reveal its contents to her. This too was a first for C. Wallace, he had never shown anyone what was in this bag.

"A box?" She asked, confused.

"Wrapped in brown paper."

"I can see that." She chuckled.

"From my dad."

"Ah," She said knowingly. It only took a few nights of pillow talk before he had opened up to her about his past. About how the day that he left on his first tour was also the day that his father had disowned him. She may have even seen C. Wallace cry. "What is inside it?" She asked.

"I don't know."

"You haven't opened it?"

"I am going to throw it away."

She thought about this for a moment, she knew that she had to play this right. It was clear that he wasn't able to talk about the box to her, so maybe she should talk to A. Wallace about it, maybe he could help. She kissed C. Wallace on the cheek and then lead him to the bedroom.


Parties aren't typically like they are in movies unless you are an actual rock star. Neither is the after-math unless you are an actual rock star. The three band members all found themselves waking up on various pieces of furniture.

"Where's your knight?" Asked C. Wallace.

"What are you talking about girl?" Asked A. Wallace.

"I am no female, you're a female." Said C. as he stood up and fell over.

"What E-Mail?" Asked A.

C. laughed, but because his face was in the shag carpet it came out muffled.

"Wait, is C. finally coming out of the closet?" Asked Robin Douglas, from across the room.

"Shut up R. Dingus." Responded C.

"Or what? You gonna finally open that box?" Robin asked, laughing.

C. Wallace was suddenly like a teenager being caught drinking and sobered up completely. He stood, then stomped his way to Robin and began to choke him. This caused quite the commotion and the other party guests were aroused. They pried at C. Wallace's fingers, then pushed him to the ground.

"What the hell man?" Asked A.

C. looked at them with sudden sadness, then shook it off and went to make his escape. He ran into the hallway of the hotel and sat down like a child. After a few minutes, Ella came out of the hotel carrying his bag.

"Hey." She said, sitting down beside him.

C. Wallace grunted, so Ella put the bag on his lap and said, "You should open this."


"Listen, I talked to your mom, and I think you should."

"NO!" Shouted C. Wallace and he took the bag to the trash chute and put it in. Ella couldn't move fast enough to stop him, but then she saw that he was sobbing. His body bobbed up and down with his sobs.

"They never came to any of my shows." He said in tears and sat back down. Ella could see that he still had the bag in his hand, he couldn't throw it away. She sat down beside him and unzipped the bag, with her hand on his shoulder he unwrapped the package.

At the very top of the box, there was a note that said, "I am sorry son, for everything." The rest of the box was filled with letters from his dad to him, telling him how proud he was of him and that he couldn't have asked for a better son. That he was wrong.


Hospitals always gave C. Wallace the heebie-jeebies but this hospital room was one that he needed to go into. His father laid there on the bed and the first words out of his mouth were, "Cancer sucks bud." Then they cried together for a long time before catching up. Catching up on a life that they could have shared.

Today, C. Wallace is a nicer fellow because he knows how fragile life is and how important it is to forgive. If you do manage to pick up a "No Relation" CD, you should check the back for a dedication to C. Wallace's father.

Short Story

About the Creator

David Brandy

My very first story crafting was an imaginary game that me and my two younger brothers would play when I was 12. My love of storytelling manifested itself quickly. Today I am a husband, father, and business owner.

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