By Big M.
“Yer goin’ where?” Granny pointed a gnarled finger in Foodge’s face.
“Lunn Donne.” Foodge retorted.
“Lunn Fucking Donne!”
“No, London England.” Foodge wasn’t comfortable with this sort of swearing before lunch, or at least before a few beverages.
“London Fucking England!”
“No, just London in England. I don’t think London copulates with England.”
“Don’t get smart with me, Boyoh!”
“I’m not being smart, or even half smart.” Foodge replied, which was true, Foodge was neither smart nor half smart. Half measures worried Foodge. One could be a wit, which was thought to be a great thing, whereas a half-wit was a pejorative word for idiot. Describing someone as smart was high praise, but half smart implied cheekiness, not half wittery.
Emmjay, Hung and M hadn’t accounted for Granny’s reaction when they’d decided to send Foodge to Britain to be Special Envoy, or Chief Photographer or whatever the fuck they’d planned.
“Well, it’s by special request, from…you know, certain people, well connected people.” This wasn’t completely true, but the invite involved a firm of solicitors.
“Special Fucking People! Royal Fucking People. What about our relationship?” Granny had let go of her aggressive tone and had moved into the looking crest fallen, just about to cry stage of the argument.
Foodge started to panic. Are we going to have a long chat about our relationship? Is she going to expect me to talk about my feelings? He suddenly realised that Granny couldn’t have a passport because she’d never travelled further than Milson’s Point. “Granny, I may have failed to convey all of the, err, ah, implications of the invitation, I mean, as my, err, partner, I mean, love of my life, you are, um, my plus one, my, other half…”
“Oh, Foodge, that’s a different matter.” Granny was suddenly coquettish. “When’s this trip takin’ place?”
“Soon, my love, very soon.” Foodge’s voice had taken on a soothing quality. “It may be difficult to organise during the Lock Down, but there are always strings that one can pull.”
“Oh, goody, I’ll have to get all new underwear and nighties. Shoes..no, leave room for purchases. I guess I can always use the empty space in Foodge’s port. Oh, and I better get my passport out of the safe…”
“Passport?” Foodge gulped and had become noticeably pale. “Won’t it need to be renewed?”
“No, I’ve always kept it up to date, just in case. Don’t you?”
Foodge thought for a second. His passport did need renewal. He was well and truly hoisted by his own petard. Granny had already raced up to her room. Merv’s disgusting visage suddenly appeared across the bar. “Sounds like you need a drink, old son.”
Make it a double!” Foodge collapsed onto a stool. “You won’t believe what I’ve done.”
“I do believe what you’ve done, you was ‘opin’ that Granny wouldn’t have a passport an’ you’d get away to the Old Dart for an ‘olidee.” Merv was already sounding like a Cockney Publican.
“Was it that obvious?”
“I don’t think she knew, but you was ‘oisted by yer own petard.” Merv was unaware that the narrator had just said that on account of him not being part of the last scene.
“What will I do?” Read a few lines ahead sounds good.
“Well, aside from killing yerself…”Merv was already pushing a second canoe across the filthy, stained bar. “Nah, only jokin”, I reckon you’ll ‘ave a hard time getting’ outta the country at the moment, plus the Poms won’t be real welcomin’.”
“No, Mr Merv, it’s official business, you know, top people involved, movers and shakers.” Foodge drained the second pint of Trotters Best. “ This will involve intelligence, planning and courage.” All three were on short supply at the Pigs Arms. “There is one urgent matter to attend.”
“What’s that mate?”