Extinguishing the stub in the ash tray Dave stares at the antique clock at the kitchen wall.
How the hell shall I go back to that room now? Sleeping in THAT bed after all this?!
He exhales the last puffs of smoke and watches them spiraling up to the ceiling. A little sound makes him kinda jump.
„I’m sorry, Dave. I didn’t expect you here.“
Hep stands in the middle of the room, dressed in a black long shirt with green leggins.
„Night cravings. Just wanted to dig my fingers into the rests of the dessert.“
She grins at him, moves on and opens the fridge – taking out a glass bowl with Tiramisou. Checking for a spoon she eyes Dave again and fetches another one.
„Joining me? Would let me feel less guilty.“ She chuckles now.
Talking about guilt!
„You’re OK? Looking a bit pale.“
„Yeah, I was facing some ghosts. God, what am I talking!? Just can’t sleep – jet lag, I suppose.“
She nods and takes another portion of the sweet temptation. He tries one spoon and then puts it away.
„Alan seems to be insomniac as well. I was missing him in bed. Suppose he’s tinkering in the studio.“
It’s better you do not know WHAT he’s tinkering around, hun!
„He always was a bloody perfectionist. Seems very familiar! Mart can be a pain in the ass – I can tell you first hand from our recent session in Santa Barbara.“
„David, he isn’t in the studio, right?“
„What do you mean?“
„You should have a look into a mirror. Even you are not that flexible to leave those fresh bite marks at your neck – or there is a Yoga technique I didn’t hear off so far.“
She tries to sound easy going, but her eyes give away the pain. Grabbing his hands she tones down her voice.
„I know about his dark side. He can be like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. You better leave as soon as you can.“
Her fingers press into his flesh.
„Is he still in your bed?“
„No, Dave – no need to apologize. It’s just – he will take all positive feelings and destroy them. Don’t let him – don’t allow him into your head!“
„Don’t worry. I already gave him my thoughts on that. Let’s hope I was bleeding convincing!“
Dave clenches his fists under Hep’s fingers.
„It was worth a try, David.“
Alan stands in the door frame – still slightly puffy eyes. One could think so he just wiped the sleep out off them. Like following an instinct he raises one hand and does so.
„I’m going to pack my stuff.“
Dave rises from his seat, eagerly wanting to get out off the kitchen – out off Alan’s company.
„Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.“
Hastily David gets his belongings and props them into his bag. He knows he only will feel better when he finally has left these walls – Alan’s ancient and obscure world. Outside the first shades of orange make it through the darkness. The new morning dawns.
Closing the boot of the Porsche he flinches when he feels a hand on his shoulder. Alan grabs him by the sleeves of his jacket.
„Don’t leave this way, Dave.“
Roughly he forces his lips onto his mouth. Still holding him in a tight grip he whispers in a low, hissing voice.
„I wonder what Martin would think about our little tête a tête?“
„He’s OK with it. I called him an hour ago, Al.“
Brushing the suddenly loosening arms off he gives Alan one last cold look.
„You will never change, right?“
His opposite holds his view.
„I know when the game is over.“
„Do you? I’d say you just hit TILT.“
With these words Dave finally opens the door and slips behind the steering wheel. With a howling motor the black vehicle leaves the mansion, it’s inhabitants and hopefully all those ill feelings behind.
The speedometer needle is busy on it’s way up. After a good few minutes David releases the pressure on the accelerator and the scenery around him passes by in more regular shapes. Trying to clear his thoughts his mind wanders back to the omninous talk he had earlier with Martin – when his hands and voice were still shaking.
„Dave, is that you?!“
„Yes, Curly. Sorry, I’m...it’s all...Fuck, I don’t know where to start!“
„David – calm down. Tell me, what happened – whatever it is.“
Martin’s voice soothed him, yet his emotions took over. Leaning against the side board in the dim lit country kitchen he let his tears freely flow.
„Shush, my dark angel! Dave...please...what did he do to you?“
There was an angry nuance now – and a very sad one.
„I should have known – god, I should have tied you to my bed and never let you take that bloody flight!“
„Curly – it’s over. I let him pay.“
„You did WHAT?!“
„I made him suffer for all.“
„Christ, what happened?!“
Martin yelled agitated out off the speaker.
„Did you beat him up?!“
„No. I did something worse.“
Then he started talking like a torrent and when he was finished there was a moment of silence at the other end of the line.
„I’m taking the next flight to London.“
His voice was cracking and then the sounds were muffled. Dave knew Mart didn’t want him to hear him crying, but he couldn’t hide it.
„Don’t you scare me, Marty, hey!“
„I just need you safe in my arms, Dave. Hell, I want to make you forget everything!“
Now it was Dave’s part to swallow hard and fight the stinging in his eyes. He lights another cigarillo to keep busy.
„I better stop now. He might sneak around.“
„You get yourself out off there, Dave!“
„Sure will – just need to get at my stuff.“
„He’s still in your...the guestroom?!“
„No clue – I’m not so keen to check.“
„Kick his ass out off there and then grab your luggage and get to Sylvia’s! I just booked me a flight while we were talking. I’ll see you in 14 hours!“
„You’re crazy, you know that?“
„Had the impression a certain somebody fell for that quality?“
„You got me with more...profound methods, lover!“
"When I finally see you we will make up for all of it. And we will talk properly."
The Porsche hits the motorway after all. Only a few miles and he would be back with his family. A little smile and ten minutes later his eyes detect the familiar name on the road sign.