The Four Musketeers: Part Fourteen

This is the fourteenth part of a fiction serial, in 754 words.

Despite saying he was not going to drink that weekend, Keith had a few whiskies at the social club. They gave him some alcoholic bravado, and also showed the rest of us that his tastes had changed since he started hanging around with Maddy’s family, and various bigwigs in parliament.

On our way back to the caravan, Johnny was walking like a sailor, and Terry kept saying he wanted to go to bed. But more beers were opened, and it wasn’t long before Johnny wanted to pick on someone. He started with Keith.

“You really reckon yerself now, don’t ya. Posh bird with her minted family, and your Tory mates at work. I bet they wouldn’t piss on you if you was on fire, Keith mate. You forgetting where you come from, or what?” Keith chose to ignore him, but Johnny was not to be ignored.

“Next thing we know you’ll be standing for election, joining those Tory bastards that keep us ordinary people down”. He had obviously hit a nerve, as Keith turned bright red. I jumped in and asked Keith if he had joined the party in the hope of becoming selected to be an M.P. in the future. I stared him out until he replied.

“And why not? Why shouldn’t I try to better myself. It may not happen for a few years of course, but I see no reason why someone with my background should not be a member of parliament”. Johnny slapped him round the back of his head. Not that hard, but enough to show he meant it. Then he really launched into him.

“Why not, you ponce? Because. Because yer mum and dad rent a council house. Because yer sister used to work in a jam factory. Because yer supposed to be one of us, not one of them. I’m telling yer, it won’t end well. You fink that bird’s family are interested in you? Nah. They just want to get you into parliament to use you. Make you talk about their business, maybe wangle a few planning changes or government grants for them. You need to open your eyes, you really do”.

Despite his drunkenness, and seriously slurring his words, Johnny was talking some truth there, and Keith got redder and redder as his anger replaced the embarrassment.

Terry suddenly stood up and lurched into the tiny bathroom at the end of the caravan. We could hear him chucking up his chicken and chips, along with more than a few pints of beer. Not long after, he reappeared, white-faced. “I’m gonna go to bed. What a shit idea this was. Danny, can you drop me at a train station in the morning? I’m going home”.

He had no sooner closed the bedroom door when Keith suddenly launched himself at Johnny. Fists flailing and completely silent, he surprised us both, and pummelled Johnny once he was on the floor. I managed to pull him off and had to wrap my arms around him until he calmed down. Johnny sat up slowly. His lip was cut, his nose was bleeding, but he was laughing. “Well, well, well. Keith the swot has finally become a man. Who would ha’ thought it?”.

Standing up to his full height, Johnny spat out a tooth into his hand, and threw it at Keith. Then he delivered a strong kick straight into his crotch. I was still hanging onto Keith, but had to let go as his legs buckled with the pain. When he was on his knees, Johnny stepped back to kick him again. But I ran forward and grabbed Johnny, both of us falling onto the small kitchen worktop next to the sink.

The commotion had brought Terry out of the bedroom, and as I walked back to see how Keith was, I heard him say something behind me.

“What’s going on? Johnny’s not moving”.

We couldn’t rouse him. Terry tried slapping his face like they do in the films, then got some water from the tap on the sink and splashed it on his face. Kneeling down next to Johnny, Terry looked up at me, his skin still pale.

“I don’t think he’s breathing, Danny”

I went over and had a closer look at Johnny. Other than the cut lip and swollen nose, there seemed to be no injuries. But he had fallen hard against the worktop, with his back to it. His head was floppy when I lifted his shoulders, and I could tell Terry was right.

He definitely wasn’t breathing.

34 thoughts on “The Four Musketeers: Part Fourteen

  1. (1) There’s more fun to be had at the Cheyenne Social Club.
    (2) Everyone knows about the bigwigs. But are there any small toupΓ©es in Parliament?
    (3) Bad citation: “On our way back to the caravan, Johnny was walking like a pirate with a peg leg, and Keith was parroting everything Johnny said with a drunken slur. That’s why Johnny decided to pick on Keith.”
    (4a) Terry became known as the “chicken and chip chucker” by his fellow plumbers, who were fond of bathroom humor.
    (4b) β€œI’m gonna go to bed. What a shit idea this was.” Terry said the same thing to his father when he suggested that Terry go into the plumbing business.
    (5) Johnny isn’t holding on to life, and his tooth isn’t holding on to its jawbone either.
    (7) Johnny’s not moving. Ironically, he’s in a caravan.

    Liked by 1 person

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