Willy woke with a start; he’d
got back from the club lunchtime, and had had an awful pain-wracked day, he’d eventually fallen asleep around teatime
after the best part of half a bottle of scotch as a painkiller. When his mind cleared after a few seconds, he realised his
mobile was ringing. He noticed the time on his clock radio as he answered the phone, it was 8.45pm.
“Willy, it’s me,
where are you, I thought you’d be at work – I want to know when this show’s on, I don’t want you reneging
on our deal”
“Pavayne, just the man
I want to see. Look can you come around to my place?”
“Where d’you live?”
“Above the butchers
“Okay, see you in…twenty”
“Blimey, you look AWFUL!”
“Thanks a lot, come
in, shut the door behind you…ow, ow…” Willy limped back into the dingy little room he lived in, and motioned
towards the only other chair in the room and said,
“Got anything to drink?”
Pavayne asked him
Willy, who had just sat down
on a blow-up rubber ring to ease his pain sighed and said,
“Cupboard over there,
glasses are in the kitchen…”
The paparazzo journalist took
a bottle of Scotch out of the cupboard, and put it on the table and went to fetch glasses.
“So, what happened to
you?” he called from the kitchen.
Willy decided it best to play
“Me? – Oh I um,
I tripped and fell down the cellar at work…hurt my back, aggravated an old war wound”
“WAR WOUND – thought
you’d got haemorrhoids, my ex-missus sat on one of those rubber rings when she was having our first kid” Pavayne
said, cracking open the Scotch, and pouring two very generous measures…
“YES, war wound! But
I don’t like to talk about it…it’s the base of my spine…” Pavayne sat down.
“So, when’s this
“Not sure yet, towards
the end of the month, she said they’d have to fix the transmission dates”
“Glory, Glory Benson,
it’s her show, she’ll get back to me about it” Willy nervously sipped his whiskey.
“Good. So, why did you
drag me all over here for?”
Willy downed the Scotch, grimaced
as it burned and reached for the bottle. Pavayne also downed his drink and held out his glass. Pouring them both a top-up,
he coughed nervously and said,
“I um…I wonder
if you could…help me – again?”
“Who is it this time?”
“No, I don’t want
you to find anybody. You know some bad guys don’t you – guys that could say…get hold of a gun, an unlicensed
one that is…”
“You want to get hold
of an unlicensed gun? – Yeah…yeah I know a few people…cost you though”
“How much?” Willy
took a big gulp on whiskey
“Off the top of my head…$500
- $1000” Pavayne said, and Willy nearly choked.
“Bloody hell –
I could go downtown and buy me an assassin with a gun for less than half that!”
Pavayne shrugged and helped
himself to more drink.
“Then why don’t
I don’t want anybody taken out, I just want to frighten them, that’s all”
“So why does it have
to be unlicensed then?” Willy rolled his eyes and said,
“Because if it goes
tits up, it’ll be untraceable…look, forget it, I’m sorry I – “
“Hey now, hold your
horses…I might be able to help…what do you want to do, just like wave it around a bit?”
Willy nodded and said,
“Yeah, that sort of
“Well, I’ve got
an old starting pistol, from when I used to be an athletics coach, it looks the business, will even make a bang. Wouldn’t
put a hole in anybody though”
Willy brightened at this and
sat forward, winced, and offered more Scotch.
“Oh no, I couldn’t
sell it, sentimental value, my days when I was-“
Willy, not wanting to walk
down memory lane with the half drunk journalist quickly interrupted and said,
“What do you want, for
letting me borrow the thing?” Pavayne sat back in the chair and looked at Willy.
“Okay, say free drinks,
every time I come into the club”
Willy thought…he already
had one guy eating into his stolen drink ‘allowance’ at work, and now another one wanted in…and they both
drank like the proverbial bloody fish…
“Free drinks eh?
- Okay, free drinks for a week”
“Sod off, a fortnight
and no longer, and you don’t come in more than three times a week”
you want it?”
“Leave it for a week
or so…I want to be fit when I pull this thing off”
“Not going to rob a
bank, are you Willy m’ boy?”
that…I just want to bring somebody into line, to scare the shit outta ‘em is all…cheers”
Sweet was doing his weekly
office visit, where he signed cheques, read contracts and just caught up with deals to keep his finger on the pulse.
“I said $50,000 above
Spike, not $100,000………oh well, at least we’ve got her now…” Sweet mumbled to himself,
casting an eye over the contract for Jesse Simone from Midnight Music.
He wasn’t annoyed with
Spike really, he was the best manager he had, and if the situation called for it, then Spike would do what had been necessary.
If the shoe had been on the other foot, and Jesse Simone had been leaving Aphrodite for Midnight, Sweet would have wanted
$250,000 above the contract price for her, minimum!
Knowing that the singer had
a huge following and a single from her alone would re-coup that extra he’d paid out straight away. It was just that
he absolutely HATED the idea of Quentin Travers having a single cent of his money that was all.
A quiet knock on the door
interrupted his musings.
“Yes?” Glory opened
the door and entered the office. She smiled and said her piece.
“Sweet, um Daddy, could
I see you a minute, please?”
“What is it Glory, I’m
“Won’t take a
minute. This new show of mine, Amongst Friends, well, I’ve got a feeling that Spike is going to cut up rough and want
to cancel things and change my schedule, I had to book something for his precious – erm, for Buffy, while he wasn’t
there – and he’s been leaving me messages that Buffy can’t do it, it’ll be SO expensive to cancel,
I’ve got guests flying in and everything, but it’s got to be a surprise, that’s the whole element of the
show. There’s no reason why she can’t do it, there’s nothing else booked, I checked” Glory looked
at her boss expectantly.
Sweet sighed and glared at
“Glory, this is bread
and butter stuff, I don’t want to be bothered by the everyday running of things! Sort it out amongst yourselves!”
“But, well, can I say
you said that things must stand, he can’t cancel – it’ll cost you thousands if he cancels”
“Say what you like!”
“But you’ll back
me up if-“
“Yes, now GO! Goodness
sake………worse than kids telling tales out of school … Lorne … where’s Lorne?” Sweet
asked Glory. She shrugged
“Well, if you see him
on your way out, tell him I want him, NOW!”
This signalled to Glory that
her audience with him was over, but she grinned as she’d got what she wanted…and she was still smiling as she
left the room.
Halfway down the corridor
she saw Lorne.
for you…he’s getting really crotchety in his old age, isn’t he!”
“Hey, don’t talk
about Daddy like that, he pays your wages, remember!” Lorne snapped and put a spurt on to get the office that bit quicker.
Glory gave him a false smile
“Yes! Come here you
little beauty…” Spike lifted the clear plastic film from the photo album page, and removed a picture, and kissed
“I take it you found
what you were looking for then?” Buffy said, looking up from reading a magazine.
They were both sitting in
the lounge at Spike’s place, Buffy was on the sofa, and Spike was leafing through old photo albums at the dining table.
“Yup, I sure have. Come
and have look at this” Buffy got up and came over to where Spike was.
“Know who that is?”
Spike held up the photo, and Buffy began to shake her head, then she smiled and took the picture off him.
There was a picture of a man
with long hair, big droopy moustache a purple shirt open practically to the waist, big gold medallion, and tight white pants
that flared into wide bell-bottoms, and Cuban heeled boots
“Who, that bloke with
the long hair and the – (She went round eyed and slack jawed, and then she grinned!) Oh my GOD! Is that Sweet?”
Spike grinned and nodded
“Yeah! Taken in the
grounds of Carrisbrooke House, my stately pile back in dear old Blighty, in the year of our Lord……… (He
angled his head to glance at the back of the photo) 1979! See that lady there…that was my mum, and that chap to the
left, by the tall hedge with his back to the camera, that was my dear old dad! Oh god, that’s Bernie in the background
by the French windows…see the dog, the Old English sheep dog…I used to practically ride on his back!”
“Where were you then?”
“Probably in the nursery,
with nanny, I was only two! This was the first rock concert they’d held at Carrisbrooke, they’d always resisted
the temptation before, because of the clean-up costs after, but they needed to get the roof fixed in the east wing, so needs
Next to Sweet, that’s
a guy called Mick Jones…brilliant guitarist – I wish I knew what he was doing these days, I’d sign him up
faster than you could blink.
“So what are you doing
with this then?” Buffy asked still smiling.
“I was going to get
a copy made, blown up and have it framed for our lord and master’s birthday. It was the first concert he’d totally
organised on his own”
“He’ll love it
– this is worth more than all the Rolex watches and stuff they others are putting towards” Buffy said, handing
Spike the photo back.
“Good, I’m glad
you think so, coz I’ve been wracking my brains!”
“Oh, I see. That’s
what it was, was it? – I wondered what the noise was!” Buffy said with a cheeky glint in her eye.
Spike grinned, narrowed his
eyes at her and scraped back his chair. Buffy giggled and took off running away.
“Right young lady, just
for that, I’m going to…” Spike hared off after her.
“No, Spike NO! No chasing,
you know I hate being chased!” Buffy leapt over the coffee table laughing and made for the door, but Spike rounded the
sofa and headed her off, catching her round the waist.
“Oh no you don’t,
come here you, naughty girl…I’m going to have to take you in hand young lady…put you in the naughty corner…”
“What’s a naughty
corner?” She asked grinning
“It’s a deep,
dark corner, where naughty little girls are taken…when they’ve been naughty!” Spike nuzzled her neck making
her shiver with delight.
“But I’d be all
–oh- lonely!” Buffy hunched up her one shoulder as Spike was tickling her by nibbling on her neck.
“Not if I’m with
you…we can be naughty together then…”
“Really? Oh… I
love the sound of that…” Buffy turned in his arms and began to kiss him passionately, and Spike eagerly responded………
Willy had thought about this
long and hard. He’d thought about it in the doctor’s surgery while he waited to be examined, and he thought about
it while he waited at the Sexually Transmitted Disease Clinic while he underwent tests for various maladies. He’d thought
about it at work, and he thought about it while lying in bed…he’d thought of nothing else………
Smith” the large black nurse called out
“Oh yeah, um, that’s
me” Willy stood
“Would you come this
way please sir.”?
only in a hospital gown, Willy followed the nurse down to a cubicle.
“Could you please provide
us with a specimen of urine in this container, and the doctor will be along with you shortly”
Willy did as he was asked,
and after what seemed an age, a doctor came and swished back the curtain, entered the cubicle and drew it closed behind him.
– oh there’s an unusual name, I don’t think……I understand that you want an HIV test…so,
if you would just answer these few questions for me…
Okay, how long have you been
a practicing homosexual?”
Willy, greatly affronted sat
up and said angrily,
“Listen here, I’m
no fuckin’ poof – I was raped! Drugged and raped – I’m at my wits end here, tearing my bloody hair
out in case I’ve got AIDS, and all you want to-“
“Okay, okay, I’m
sorry Mr Smith, I didn’t mean to offend you. These questions are for our own records, and are totally confidential –
in fact they are anonymous, we don’t even put names on them…we find people often use an alias when they come here
Right…um, raped you
say…have you contacted the police at all – male rape is a very serious crime, and it’s taken as seriously
as female rape these days. When did the offence take place?
ago” Willy nervously looked at his shaking fingers
“And you didn’t
report it straight away?”
didn’t think…things are still patchy…I can’t remember much…only coming to and not remembering
a bloody thing, except I’d got this fuck- ahem sorry doc, I’d got this tremendous pain in my butt. I was at work
a couple of nights ago……………………” he went onto explain to the doc just
what had happened:
Willy was at work, still in
pain, it had been three days since the ‘incident’ at Glory’s place. Weekdays were slow, especially early
in the evening just when the place was used as a ‘watering-hole’ before the nightclub part opened.
Willy knew he didn’t
have much chance to ‘sting’ the customers with either watered down spirits or cocktails with the Polish spirit,
but he needed to take a few risks, as he’d got both the journalist and the Paparazzo on free drinks, and boy did they
drink. But things were looking up tonight, there were three fat executives, obviously new in town, away from their wives,
an expense account burning holes in the pockets of their cheap suits.
It was their fourth round
of beers with Scotch chasers, and when Willy happily served them some watered down whiskey, they didn’t even notice.
The one guy, fat and red-faced
who sat right next to the bar had a laugh like a jackass, he’d eaten a dish of peanuts and seemed to be doing most of
“Hey, did you hear that
sales rep from – where did he say he was he from Chuck?”
“That’s it, Maryland…getting
SO worked up about his figures, like they were something special …’I’m gonna give it to you good! He said!”
the two other exec’s laughed as the fat guy told his story, but they all turned to look at the little barman, who’d
suddenly gone as white as a sheet and had dropped a large Scotch on the floor, the glass smashing everywhere.
Willy staggered back and just
caught the bar before he keeled over.
All he could hear in his head,
was the words, ‘Give it to you good! Give it to you good! Give it to you good!’ hyperventilating, he held his
temples, seeing in his minds eye the pillow in Glory’s bedroom as his face was pressed into it, and somebody was lying
on his back…and the pain…oh god, the pain in his ass.
“Hey, buddy, you okay?
– What’s up with him…hey you there, barman…you okay – want us to call somebody – Chuck
– go see if there’s-“ the fat guy go up off his stool, and went to open the flap of the bar. Willy just
about managed to pull himself together, and although a little shaky, he smiled.
“No! Um, no. Sorry,
it’s, it’s okay… I’m………okay, thanks – tired, you know how it is” Willy
had just had his first ‘flashback’, if he’d but know it………………………
“I see, and have you
had other flashbacks since?” The doctor asked Willy
“One or two…I’m
trying to slowly piece things together”
“Uh huh, I understand.
Well although any physical evidence such as sperm or lubricant would have long gone, we can still assess any damage done to
you, and it might just be worth you reporting it to the police in case you get total recall…now, hold still” Wearing
rubber gloves, the doctor took a syringe full of blood from Willy’s inner elbow.
“You do realise this
is only a preliminary test, don’t you? You have to come back in three months for a follow up test for the proper results”
“WHAT – OH FUCK!
– I mean, sorry doc…but I’ve got to wait until…I could be under a death sentence here!”
The doctor put the vial of
blood into an envelope and sealed it.
“Things have come a
long way since the early eighties, Mr smith. HIV with the right treatment needn’t mean an early death sentence any more.
There are many combinations of drugs along with a sensible healthy regime of nutritious food and exercise, and your life expectancy
could be the same as any healthy person”
He smiled at Willy after he
said this, but as usual, the patient looked totally sceptical. To practically everyone who first came in there, HIV meant
AIDS, and AIDS meant DEATH at an early age…Willy made up his mind, he’d thought about it long enough. If he was
going to be under the threat of an early death-sentence, then so was Glory Benson………
“Well, we don’t
want to get there too early, besides which, I doubt very much if he’ll show much before 11pm – he never does”
Spike said. Buffy, Harmony and Xander nodded in agreement, and then Xander said,
“But as it’s a
‘surprise’ party – do you think he’ll have any say in the matter?”
“He’s got a point,
if Lorne’s organised all this, then-“
“I doubt this is a ‘surprise’,
Sweet isn’t daft – he’ll know exactly what’s going on, in fact I’d bet on him having picked
the venue, the caterers, everything” Spike said.
“Hmm, you’re probably
right. Oh I hate these do’s” Xander said screwing up his face
“Yeah, and me”
“Me too” Harmony
“Not the best fun to
be had…but we are all going together, yes?” Buffy asked
“We could all go in
my car, if you like – you could leave yours at my place, and pick it up after” Xander suggested.
“Okay, I’ll drive,
you can have a drink then, if you want Xand” Spike said
settled then. If we get there for say 10, we could be gone by midnight” Spike, Buffy and Harmony nodded so it was all
on then Xander, see if we can find the next ‘Darkness’. What are you lovely ladies doing?”
to test me on geography, and I’m going to test her on history questions, for this quiz”
“History – oh
boy…I wish I’d paid more attention at school now!”