film is a stunning success, receiving rave reviews from all of the tabloid press
and music papers (except NME of course) and you have spent a glorious evening at
the UK launch party receiving praise and approval from all, for your witty and
incisive script. Years of toil and rejection have finally paid off big time, and
you have already had an offer from a well-known Hollywood director for your next
script. Momentarily you feel very alone and wonder where James is, and what he's
doing tonight, but unwilling to let these thoughts spoil the evening you refocus
your attention back to the party, and on the film’s leading man Craig with
whom you've been flirting all night. You sent James an invitation to the preview
and the party afterwards, two invitations in fact… It would have been childish
not to, since he was the inspiration for your main character and had supported
you both financially and emotionally the year it took to write. (It probably
shouldn't have taken so long but the endless hours the two of you spent making
love slowed things down a bit.) James had always been very supportive of your
career, but then he'd also made it clear what he wanted in his future: a wife,
kids, dog, house in Cardiff Bay etc, and when you were asked to go to New York
to oversee production and make last minute changes to the story the two of you
finally agreed that your lives where going in different directions. It's not
that you didn't want kids house domesticity, etc, etc, it's just that the time
wasn't right and you wanted all the things James had and… and … Craig's
tongue is exploring the inside of your mouth, and his hands are grappling with
the clasp of your bra. This is not how you wanted this evening to end. So your
resist further, wriggling free of his drunken hold and make a swift exit to the
bar. But, as you cross the room you spot a familiar figure propping up one end,
those broad shoulders and dark hair cannot be mistaken. It takes all your
resolve not to break into a run and throw your arms round him, but instead you
gently slide between James and the next bar stool as he stares intently at his
drink. "Hey there cutie, you made it then", you say softly so that
only he can hear. "Yeah, thought I'd let you pay for the film and beer for
once" says James backing away from you slightly, as his gaze meets yours
briefly. The look that you get is guarded, and you find it impossible to judge
his mood. "Well did you like the film then?" you say trying to stay on
neutral territory. This was not a situation you had prepared for, as far as you
could see, your relationship had ended on good terms, if he hated you why come?
Revenge was never a part of James's character. As James is about to answer a
small petite blonde slides her arm through his and fixes you with an intent
smiles, which most definitely says ‘hands off he's mine'. She has a soft Welsh
accent, child-bearing hips, and a huge diamond ring on that finger of her left
hand. James introduces you to Nena, and you rapidly launch into confident,
happy, ex-girlfriend/script writer mode as she raves on about the film (and
script). Five minutes of animated conversation seem like five hours, but you
finally manage a graceful exit when Craig comes over for another grope. After
fighting Craig off for a second time, you make for the sanctuary of the toilets,
and collapse in a heap behind the door of the second cubicle. Sitting on the bog
with head in hands you wonder how, after almost a year of being apart, it can
hurt so much to see James with someone else, and the drink starts to question
your reasons for parting. Ten minutes later you emerge composed (…repeat after
me I have a brilliant career and a stunning independent future ahead of me…)
to be confronted by Nena reapplying makeup (she suffers from acne, yeah!) in the
communal mirrors. "Hello again", you smile sweetly. Nena fixes you
with another of her smiles, your mind drifts to the Cheshire Cat in Alice in
Wonderland, and of course you have become a white mouse. "I hope you don't
mind me asking (God yes I do, you think) but how long did you go out with James
for?" Nena asks, the smile remaining rigid and the eyes not leaving her
prey. "Erm…" you say stalling in order to find the most politically
correct answer. "Oh a couple of years, on and of", you say. It was
actually 2 years 5 months 3 days… nooo don't go there you think. "We're
getting married in August", purrs the Cheshire Cat, claws ready for the
kill. "Would you like to come?" Rallying, you say with teeth gleaming
"Gosh I'd love to but Steven (Spielberg, that is) has asked me to write a
script for him and I know he wants to start filming in July /August time, I
might be able to fly back though, send me an invite and I'll try to schedule a
window in my diary". Being a mouse was never your strong point, if truth
were known you were probably more competitive than James, which was one of the
reasons why the two of you got on so well together. The Cheshire cat limps out
of the toilets and you go back to the bog to practice ‘I have a brilliant
career and a stunning independent future ahead of me’.
Three hours later the Janitor comes to lock up the toilets and you can repeat the sentence backwards sideward, upwards, downwards… but your heart's still not convinced (…neither is your groin). Three days later, having ruthlessly pumped Nicky and Sean (whom you kept in contact with since splitting from James) for information about the Cheshire Cat, you are sitting in the middle of your new empty London flat, pissed out of your tiny little mind, trying to make sense of it all. She's 25 and lives in Cardiff, they met two weeks after you left for New York and have been inseparable ever since. She can cook (roast potatoes are her speciality) she has a job as a nail technician (manicurist to you and I) but also works in a nursery part time. If she were entering a Miss World contest she'd campaign for World Peace and the abolition of poverty. One bit of good news however, is that she and James spend Wednesdays apart so that they can see their 'other friends', and it is Wednesday today. After ¾ of a bottle of gin, two glasses of wine, and a Diamond White you finally feel able to stagger round to James's flat to talk to him. You get there and ring his doorbell, but there is no answer, it's 1am so he's probably still at the pub/club, you sit outside on the wall with the rest of the gin and wait. Seconds later (…it's 3am really but you're so drunk you don't notice) James is hauling you to your feet, and carrying you into his flat. As soon as you enter happy memories start flooding back, f**king James on the sofa, against the wall, on top of the sink, in the shower, on the stairs… You sober immediately and realise what a bad idea this was. What the f**k are you going to say??? "Do you want a coffee?" James smiles, his brown eyes holding your gaze for much longer this time. "Yes please" you say hanging your head sheepishly as you slump onto the sofa "I'm sorry, I shouldn't have come, there were all these things I wanted to tell you when I was pissed but I can't remember them now ". Moments later James returns with coffee, hands you one, and sits against the wall opposite you. He starts to strum one of the many guitars littered around the flat. After a long period James breaks the silence. "How are you?"
"Lonely" you say. You'd never been able to lie to James, and today is no exception. James comes over and sits next to you on the sofa, he puts both arms round you and draws you into his chest, you nestle your head under his chin and listen to him breath. Tears roll down your face as you realise what you have lost. Minutes pass and your coffee grows cold. Eventually James pulls away and you are left staring at the floor. Determined to make a dignified exit, you rise to face James with tears still rolling down your cheeks. "Thanks", you say, "If ever you need someone to talk to give me a call". You call a taxi and go back to your empty flat.
Your mobile bleeps, it's 2am and you were asleep. "Hello". Silence. "If this is an obscene phone call, please just f**k off till the morning", you mumble, angrily. "Hi, it's James".
"Hi… are you OK?". His voice sounds strained and he's definitely in a bad mood. It's been three weeks since your disastrous visit to his flat, so it can't be you he's pissed off with. Suddenly the penny drops, this is the first night of the Manics new tour. Hence, James is stressed out and in an absolutely foul mood. You smile and wait for the abuse. "The sound stage is shit, the crew are complete and utter brainless morons, all of my guitars are out of tune…” (…you know this has to be a complete exaggeration). The rant goes on for at least an hour, whilst you interject with sympathetic responses. On two occasions you are nearly pulled into a full-blown argument, but having spent three tours with James you've become quite skilled in avoiding them. "…And we've run out of pot noodles".
"I could FedEx you some tomorrow", you say sensing that James has finally calmed and his humour returned.
"Thanks for listening", says James, "Cheshire Cat lasted about four minutes".
"Nicky told you?" you say embarrassed that he has found out your pet name for his fiancé. "Anyway, go give ‘em hell", you say.
As you drift off to sleep, your mind recalls James after a gig, all fired up and as randy as hell. The sex was hard and fast, almost violent, fantastic, you tingle at the thought, nothing and no one every really came close. Memories of James f**king you in the broom cupboard after the Millennium gig flood your dreams, and you orgasm.
Two days later you are again woken at 2 am, by James hammering on your front door. He storms in and begins to pace up and down the living room. His actions remind you of caged animal. After ten minutes of silence you can take no more. "James what's the matter? Is there anything I can do?" The tiger turns, and without warning your nightdress is ripped off and you are pinned, naked, to the nearest wall by his body. His mouth covers yours forcing your lips apart as his tongue penetrates. One hand holds both arms high above your head, whilst the other caresses your breasts until the nipples are erect. Your body screams with desire as you feel his cock grow hard between your legs. His right hand releases your nipples, swiftly removing his trousers and boxers, before grabbing your right leg and raising your knee high in the air so that your vaginal lips are pulled apart. James's eyes briefly capture yours in a wild stare before ramming his now huge hard cock into you. You try to cry out but his mouth has completely taken yours. His thrusts come hard and fast, and your buttocks are ground into the wall behind. You try to brace yourself against the f**king, but find yourself submitting completely to his will. The strength of your orgasm takes you utterly by surprise and causes James to come almost immediately afterwards. Finally James pulls away, but your legs fail to hold you up, so he carries you to the settee. Again the silence between the two of you is deafening. "Good gig then?" you say trying to make light of the situation. James grunts. He always was a moody bastard and in general you humoured him, particularly when he was about to go on stage, but not all the time. "So, what happened to the Cheshire Cat then?" you say waiting for the explosion, after all it was only Tuesday. "It's over", says James quietly. You rise from the settee and walk over to the corner where James is sitting. Kneeling between his legs you kiss him gently on the lips whilst running your fingers through his hair. "I'm sorry for walking out on us" you whisper, "I do want to marry you and have your children…” James pulls you close and you make love very slowly savouring every moment. "But I'm not learning to cook, and I hate dogs…”