stories for your screen
Fluid morals
This bed is harder than my boyfriend's...
Pascal Chatterjee
04 February 2014
3 min read Image credit: José Manuel Ríos Valiente

This bed is harder than my boyfriend's. Unfamiliar too. And this isn't my usual hangover. Something smells funky. Ugh.

I risk turning my head to the side. The room wobbles. I blow hair out of my mouth. There's a man's ear within licking distance. Nick Bailey's ear. So much for my great plan.

It didn't start out as a plan, more a vague hope. Lisa had heard a rumour that Nick Bailey frequented a certain seedy bar, so that's where we were. The bar smelled like foul: a mixture of piss, sweat and cologne. An unlikely place to meet an A-list star, but the cocktails were cheap enough for me to take the gamble.

I was checking my phone, trying to ignore a sweater-wearing slob staring at my legs, when Lisa tottered back with our drinks and whispered: "He's actually here! Next to the slot-machine! Wearing that silly hat!"

The man she meant didn't look like the Nick Bailey I'd seen on YouTube. He was wearing a disappointingly baggy t-shirt (still tight around his arms though!) and a woolly hat that hid most of his dark-brown hair. Apart from a scruffy patch at the front. Mmm.

"Are you sure it's him?" I asked Lisa.

"Yes! He has that tattoo of a horse at the base of his neck. Or at least, it looked horsey."

Good enough. I grabbed my gin and tonic from Lisa and downed it in one. She looked at me nervously. "You're not actually going over to him, are you?"

"Isn't that why we're here?" I asked.

"Yes, but I didn't think he'd come, and if he did, I thought he'd have an entourage."

"So you were planning on gazing at him from afar? Listen, all hell will break loose if someone tweets a picture of him. This is our only chance!"

I stood up, smoothed my skirt and dragged Lisa towards him. I was going to be the best wingwoman ever.

We landed on chairs either side of him with impressive precision. He looked surprised, then irritated, then he looked us up and down. I smiled sweetly.

"Who are you?" he blurted, finally.

"Don't worry, your secret is safe with us!" said Lisa, blushing.

"We know who you are, Nick," I said. "We were just wondering what a guy like you's doing in a place like this."

"Trying to have a quiet drink. There's only so much showbiz I can take. And ladies, I mean this in the nicest possible way: I'm not in the mood for company tonight."

"Wow, you're forward," I said. I couldn't resist.

"I meant at this table."

"Sure. You can have one drink with us though, right? Are you buying or shall I get this one?"

"I thought you knew who I was," he muttered, pushing back his chair and getting up. "What're you having?"

"Surprise us," I told him. You can tell a lot about a man's intentions from the drink he buys you.

I turned to Lisa once Nick was out of earshot. "Lise, you can't just sit there not saying anything. Are you okay? You don't really look like you're having a good time."

Lisa emptied her glass and looked at me weirdly. "You're doing what you always do, Amy. Stealing the show. Let's be realistic, only one of us is going to get anywhere with Nick, and it's not me."

"That's not true. You just need to come out of your shell."

"I can't. Not with him. Not around you. Do you want me to stay or should I leave you two alone?"

"Lisa, I have a boyfriend. I'm not going home with Nick."

She just looked at me. Damn her.

"Stay if you want to," I said.

She got up. "Just be yourself. Call me if you need anything." And then she left.

Nick walked back holding three absurd alcoholic milkshakes.

"Your friend go to the bathroom?"

"She went home. I'm sorry, I would've told you before you bought her drink."

"Are you kidding? More, what did they call it - Dangermilk - for us!"

I raised my glass. "Thank you." I wasn't going to sleep with him, then. Honestly.

He clinked his glass against mine and drank. "I saw the way she was looking at you when you were flirting with me. People look at me like that too."

"You're a famous singer. I bag groceries."

"I know envy when I see it."

"How do you deal with it?" His eyes were so brown.

"I come to seedy bars and try to meet people like you."

The morning after
After every crest comes a crash
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