Log in | Jump |

The Other Side of Everything

making all our lives easier, more fulfilling, lovelier journeys


Written on July 22, 2005, and categorized as Secret and Invisible.
You can follow comments through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and trackbacks are closed.

(This is the fourth part of a series. Please read “Do You Mind If I Smoke?” followed by “Would You Like To Go For A Drink?” followed by “Why On Earth Did I Do That?” before this one.)

I stood in the grubby men’s lavatory in the Hope and Anchor, staring into a mirror barely worthy of the name, picking bits of toilet paper off my face which had stuck when I wiped off the sweat. My heart had not stopped pumping inside my ribcage like a bassdrum since I had found my way out of the back of the bar and into this place of repair. A useless dribble of over-chlorinated water formed in my hand and I attempted to use this to restore order to my straining features.

The fact that I had left M waiting for a beer while I shagged a woman I had never met was something that required a little adjustment. I was in a mild panic in case I didn’t re-connect with the fabulous indian girl, whose name I did not know, who presumably was now back working in the downstairs bar. I was in an elevated state because of the incredible excellence of the sex I had just experienced. I was soberly considering the folly of being unprotected, and hoping I had not exposed myself to disease or death.

Fifteen minutes, I was thinking, how am I going to explain fifteen minutes? My mind raced… I got talking to an old friend who was just leaving… yes, that’s it… I went to the bar and the beer was off… could happen… um… I decided to play it by ear.

I went to the top bar which was an easier place to get served, bought two pints of chemical-yellow lager, and slightly unsteadily wobbled back down to the gig, splashing beer on the stairs, showing my rubber-stamped hand to the girl on the door, who smiled at me knowingly. Suspicion flashed through my mind: Did she know what just happened? Was she in on it? I had a real moment of paranoia as I considered the possibility that I had fallen into some bizarre rock-siren’s trap.

Entering the basement I was hit by a wall of noise to my left, as a spindly four-piece band were over-loud to compensate for their lack of playing ability, singing a song about being two-timed. “Sheeeeeeee’s a two-timin’ two-timer, sheeeeeeeeee’s a two-timin’ two-timer” wailed the hopeless singer, eyes screwed shut, face red with effort and spots. I winced at the volume and the reference, and walking through the carefully posed couldn’t-care-less audience, found M sitting at the table where I had left her 20 minutes previously. In front of her was a pint of lager, and she was shouting loudly over the music, deep in conversation with a chubby young goth to her left.

Looking up at me as I put the two pints down on the table and opened my mouth to start explaining, she pointed energetically at the young guy who was visibly disappointed at my appearance. “THIS IS MICHAEL” she shouted shrilly, her small face beaming “HE’S A FRIEND OF SAMBUCA AND HE WANT’S TO MINGE MY WALLABEE” or at least, that’s what it sounded like. I forced a smile and yelled, “HELLO MICHAEL” and extended my hand. He shook it, and I had a shock at the feel of this hand, so different from the warm erotic strength of my new indian friend: it was cold, clammy and limp.

M seemed not to notice that I had been away for so long. Amazing, she was so self-engrossed that she really had not registered the delay. No excuses necessary! I waited 10 minutes until the band finished their set to a smattering of polite applause more suitable for a lazy cricket single, and resumed conversation at normal level. Michael although younger was clearly no fool and had already twigged M as insecure and potentially shaggable, and was busy pushing her buttons, getting some right. M seemed to enjoy the attention of two men, or rather, a man and a chubby gimp, out of all proportion to the flattery that was accorded her, and encouraged us both, but every so often, put Michael down scornfully in my favour. I felt uncomfortable with this game, but they both seemed to enjoy it. I was not where I wanted to be.

I gulped my lager down as quickly as possible, thinking that it would give me the excuse to go back to the bar, and get the number of my new flame. “Pint, Michael?” I generously offered, sensing a miser. “Ooh, Guinness, thanks,” he replied, and I thought, that’s right, go for the pricey one. M having drunk the pint Michael had bought her as well as mine, asked for tequila. I wondered whether she was going to leave the bar vertical.

This time the bar was crowded, and I spent ten minutes looking over heads, trying to find my dark and gorgeous new lover. A fluffy leather blonde in front of me exited sideways with two G&Ts, and I was suddenly pressed against the wood. Only 30 minutes previously, this had been the start of a marvellous adventure. Now I felt rather desperate.

In front of me a short, white-faced weasel of a man turned from the till and asked, “Can I help you?”

“Um, sure, pint of Guinness, a tequila, and, um…” I scanned the small bar area left and right. No sign of her. I must play for time. Weasel was back, raising his eyebrows for me to complete my order. “Another Guinness.” This would take longer. I paid and waited for the drinks to settle, looking piercingly around the basement. Nothing, but I could see M enjoying the attentions of Michael, and someone new had joined them, whether female or male undeterminable, but tall and dripping with chains and black lace.

Where was she? My heart plummeted as I picked up the drinks and moved crab-like across the floor back to the table. Putting the drinks down, I signalled to M that I needed a piss.

It was about 10.30pm and the place was going to close in the next hour. I decided to re-charge my flagging spirits by visiting the other men’s bog. The coke was lumpy, and small rocks pinged onto the cubicle floor, white on shiny black. I somehow managed to crush enough to assemble a dodgy line on the back of my wallet, and with fear of discovery no longer an issue, loudly sniffed it up through a grubby banknote, already stained red at one end from someone else’s nose bleed.

The coke cut through the alcohol and feeling grimly determined, I set off to find the indian girl before it was too late. At the main bar upstairs, I caught the attention of a pleasant bottle-blonde.

“Excuse me, I am looking for the indian girl who was working behind the bar earlier?” Bottle-blonde looked confused. “She was working downstairs.”

Recognition dawned, “Oh, Sarah’s friend, yes, she was just filling in for Sarah for a couple of hours, she had to go home because someone was locked out.”

“Where is she now?” I asked, aware that the dramatic phrase carried too much intensity.

“I don’t know. They’ve both gone, I think.” She looked at me curiously. “Do you want to leave a message?”

I considered leaving my number, thought better of it. Bottle-blonde read my disappointment and said, “Sarah is working on Sunday…”

Confused, buzzing, I mumbled, “That’s OK. Thanks. Can I have a tequila and a pint of Guinness, please.”

Leaving the upstairs bar, I returned to the gig downstairs with more drinks. The headline band were playing some utter crap, and a line of drunk people were dancing at the front within ear-damage range of the band’s amplifiers. In the middle of them was M, wheeling around like a dervish. I put the Guinness down, and caught her around the waist, and she feigned surprise and then lost her footing, so that for a moment, I was balancing a woman on one arm and tequila on the other. In a single fluid movement of Ballet Rambert standard, I swept her up onto her feet and put the tequila in her hand. Delighted with this, M threw back the tequila with massive bravado, and then threw both bony arms around me and squeezed her torso against mine from pubic bone to collar, putting her head on my shoulder, and rocked me as if I was a nursery toy.

It was a bizarre moment; in full view of the band and the assembled room of sixty-odd people, M seemed to be reverting to childhood, experiencing some kind of rebirth. I realised that she was extremely drunk, and that home was a good place to head, so without peeling her off, I collected up her bag and coat, and we moved together very slowly towards the exit and out. The girl on the door gave me the same knowing grin as I left, and in my mind I cursed her for being so fucking clever and so fucking self-satisfied and so fucking attractive but not as so fucking attractive as my gorgeous indian fuck who by now I was sure I would never fucking see again, fuck it.

The four blocks from the Hope and Anchor to my flat were an effort. M seemed to have reached a place where with all higher mental functions shut down, she was taking advantage of her animal nature. She clung to me like a limpet, managing to massage the front of my trousers several times, and burbling as she half-staggered about having to stay the night and she hoped I didn’t mind and would it be ok to borrow a t-shirt and did I think she was a bad girl. As I fumbled for my keys, I caught the beginnings of M‘s body starting to purge itself of the toxins. She really did smell strong now, not attractive, just rank, and as we entered the hallway she nearly collapsed. I led her into the toilet, and opened the lid. On cue, she leant forward, fell to her knees and vomited, choking it through her long nose. The smell of beer, bile and tequila arose about her like a swamp.

I went and got a clean towel, some disinfectant and a cloth to wipe down the toilet which had been liberally sprayed. M was huddled around the bowl, arms now clinging to the porcelain as she had been squeezing me earlier. I fetched a red plastic bucket, picked her up, led her to the bedroom, laid her down, took off her shoes and her belt. M began to moan.

“I am sorry, I am sorry, I am so sorry…”
“Don’t worry,” I said, “There’s a bucket there in case you need to be sick again.”

The word “sick” sent a convulsion through her slender body, and I grabbed the bucket in time for her to aim. Shit. When she had finished, I wiped her face with the clean towel. She was incredibly light to begin with, now she seemed hardly to be there. She was pretty much gone, but sensing my arms around her, she misread this as sexual activity, and she began to squirm. I thought she was going to be sick again, and tried to sit her up, but, damn it, she was trying to respond. She smelled of vomit and alcohol as she reached up with eyes closed and waited to be kissed. It was repulsive. I put her down slowly, and she seemed not to notice.

I left her lying comatose on the bed, took the bucket and emptied it. I cleaned the toilet, then washed myself. I was bewildered. The coke was keeping me from feeling tired, but I was exhausted, demoralised, lonely. More than anything I wanted to be spending the night with my new indian friend, but the further away from that amazing moment that time took me, I felt that the episode was destined to be a single, isolated incident, and that the chances of us meeting again were diminishing.

I stripped down to my underwear and went into the bedroom where M had not moved since her last expulsion. Carefully leaving a gap between us, I lay on the bed, nowhere near sleep, and feeling empty. How could the evening have turned out this way? I felt that in achieving my ends, I had squandered a huge opportunity. I kept running events over and over in my mind, replaying them, seeking some solace, finding none. Until 4am I lay there sleepless, staring up at the ceiling, trying not to breathe in through my congested nose because the smell was so bad, waiting for the dawn.

(End part four)

You might want to read

  • End of an Era File under: Ex-hippy He tried to shag my ex-gf in Finsbury Park. Jon Cainer: No Brainer. The only real hippy astrologer in Britain. Hello Jonathan, According to Indian tradition we are […]
  • InLiWriMo #27 A young lad from way out of town Just couldn't hold any job down, Try as he might To hold on real tight, Employment, he let himself down. The young lad turned into a geezer And met […]
  • The Friendliest Dry Cleaner My local Dry Cleaner is Mr Chambio, a very charming and friendly man of Greek extraction, who has recovered from illness and returned to the Holloway Road. His shop is now brimming with […]
Written by .
More about the author.

You can follow comments through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and trackbacks are closed.

This thing has 2 Comments

  1. Comfort Addict
    Posted 23 July, 2005 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    That series was great! It makes me wish I owned a publishing house. You are a very good writer, Deek.

  2. La Sirena
    Posted 15 August, 2006 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

    Aaah…your sweet Indian Fuck. I like to think of those encounters as a union of temporary soul mates — or maybe a reunion with a soul mate from the past.

    Lovely, well-written story — and episodic too!

Comments are currently closed