Tuesday 1 July 2014

Rock 10

A Million More Years ....

I just sit there nervously, waiting to hear what Mango has phoned to tell me.  

Berry I hope this isn't going to be horrible news!!  I don't think my nerves could quite take it right now on top of how Mace is behaving!! 

I think something has just hit me ... the thought that HE might have faded.  Something that I've never really thought about before.  I just can't deal with it!!  I always thought one day I would be able to tell him why I did what I did to him and that I never stopped loving him.  The thought of never being able to do that ...

"Granite are you still there?"  he asks

"Yeah ... Sorry Mango!!"

"You don't remember me then I take it?"

"Of Berry, of course I remember you Mango, who wouldn't ... the little orange nerd with specs and starch in his nappy that used to come round to play with my equally nerdy little brother!!"  he starts laughing quite loudly  "Mango you wouldn't just be calling me out of the blue after all these years ... this is bad news isn't it? ... It's Gravel isn't it?!"  

I can feel myself starting to panic inside.  As much as I probably will never forgive my brother for the back stabbing that he did ... he is still my little brother and I love and miss him ... I have always meant to go back to Sugar Valley to put things right between us one day but there is one very big thing stopping me - being strong enough to face HIM ... I just hope I haven't left it too long ... for either of them!!

"Gravel is fine, he is a berry hole, but he is okay."  Mango says so now I'm confused why is he phoning me?  Please don't let it be HIM!!!  "This call is more to do with your nephew Slate."

Oh! so my brother did manage to have children ... I left Sugar Valley a few years after Gravel and Amber got married, before they had any children while they were trying for a baby, and I haven't spoken to him since.  I'm a little amused that the boy has my middle name.  Why isn't Gravel making this call instead of Mango?

"Mango, you are going to have to fill me in, I don't know how many children that brother of mine has.  How is Amber?  I presume they are still together ... has he driven her insane or stabbed her in the back yet?"

"Oh fudge!  Granite you don't know do you ..."  he goes very quiet for a moment  "Gravel only has the one son Slate, unfortunately Amber faded the day Slate was born, there were complications with the birth."  he mumbles  "I honestly though you knew they had a baby on the way, I could have sworn she was pregnant before you got yourself locked up!!  I wandered why you'd never bothered with the boy!"

"FUDGE!!  No I didn't know about either of them Mango!!"  

I'm shocked into silence for a moment.  I liked Amber, she was a really nice girl, I always thought she was too good for Gravel.  As for the boy, Mango has to have that wrong they were doing the Artificial Insemination still when I got locked up.  I never actually thought they would manage to have any children.   

"So this nephew of mine, Slate, what's wrong with him?  Turned out an uncontrollable rebel like me did he?" 

"No, far from it, Slate is a great kid!!"  he laughs  "He might look like Gravel but personality wise he is nothing like him, so you'll love him ... he is a doctor, so he hasn't made a bad career choice either!!"  This makes me laugh a little, I guess he remembers mine and my brothers relationship better than I thought he would.  Mango goes quiet for a moment  "Do you have time to talk Granite, only it's a little delicate and it might take a while."

I tell Mango I'm fine to talk but ask him to hang fire for one second as I glance at Mace who is still stood there frowning at me.  

"It's an old friend from back home."  he scowls and snaps it better not be HIM!!  "No, it's my brothers mate Mango you idiot.  HIS name is not Mango!!   Be a sweetie and find me something edible to eat I'm starving!"  I blow him a kiss and he storms off in a huff.  I lie back on the bed laughing as I watch him stomp out of the room -  I swear he gets P.M.T sometimes!!

"Okay I'm all yours Mango, so what is the problem."

I lie there listening.  Mango tells me that Slate has been dating his daughter Coral since school and they were due to get married in a few months time.  Because of him becoming a doctor like himself and dating his daughter they have become very close and everything was going great up until about a month ago.  I can't help but notice the tone of his voice changes as he's talking and he starts to sound upset.  

He tells me that he's making the phone call because Gravel couldn't face telling me what he's done to his son, even though they insisted that we have to try and find me.  I wander who they are?  What he tells me next stops me asking the question because he totally floors me!! 

Mango tells me that Gravel and Coral, have been having an affair behind Slates back which has obviously upset Slate.  Slate actually caught them, he walked in on them and before that he didn't have a clue about what has been going on right under his nose for six weeks between his Dad and girlfriend.

"GRAVEL HAS DONE WHAT?!"  I sit up not quite believing what I just heard. "I'm sorry Mango but you are going to have to tell me that again!!"   So Mango repeats it and I did hear it right the first time!!  "So my brother has been sleeping with his own sons fiance, who I presume is half his age ... he has always been a slimy back stabbing berry hole but I never thought he would stoop that low!!"  

Mango stays quiet and I'm beginning to wander why I am being told this.

"It gets worse ... my daughter, who I am highly ashamed of right now, and yes you are right she is half Gravels age ... is pregnant and she doesn't know if it is Slates or Gravels baby."  Fudge berry!!  "Slate doesn't know about this yet ... which is when I get to the main point of this phone call."

"Why where is Slate? ... has he done one, because I wouldn't blame him if he has!!"  I wander for a moment if he might have legged it and they think he might be trying to find me, I am probably the only other family that he has.  "Is he visibly a mixed berry?"  I ask realizing he couldn't do one and leave Sugar Valley if he's visably mixed.

"Yes he's got Gravels brown skin and Ambers orange hair and eye colouring."  he goes quiet for a moment so I ask him who Slate looks like.  "Gravel, I don't see much of Amber in him at all other than her colouring.  Slate actually reminds me a lot of your Dad, he's a Rock alright, he's even got The Nose!!  and Gravel is always going onto me about how much like you he is - self absorbed."  we both start laughing.  

I was lucky, I inherited our Mothers nose while Gravel got Dad's nose which he hated with a passion.  When he was a kid he used to keep trying to punch my nose thinking he could make mine look like his.   

"Granite, I'm afraid Slate is in intensive care and has been on full life support for the past month."

"WHAT?!  WHY?" 

"Slate understandably has taken Gravel and Coral's affair pretty badly ... Slate attempted to take his own life."  I seriously don't believe I'm hearing this!! 

"I doubt you would know as it's been such a long time since you've been home, but I am also a doctor and even though my department is neurology, I'm over seeing his care personally, so I'll be able to answer all of your questions."    

I laugh a little because I do know all about Mango Muffin being a doctor and his career. I know he is head of neurology at Sugar Valley and one of the best and most sort after neurosurgeons on the planet.  He came to Cherry Hill once a few years back to do a really complex operation that nobody else was brave enough to attempt.  I nearly shit myself because I almost bumped into him, I was literally feet away from him but luckily he never spotted me.  He is always in the monthly medical journals which always gives me a little laugh seeing his face and seeing what he has achieved, which really doesn't surprise me. I remember the nerdy little boy who use to hang around with Gravel, who always had his head in a book like my brother, a right pair they were!!  Sat reading like a pair of old men instead of being out playing, climbing trees and getting up to mischief like normal children do - but not that pair!!  Seeing Mango in the journals always reminds me of home as well as making me miss it. 

"I know Slate and I honestly would never have seen this coming, he's pretty strong, self assured, independent and mentally stable.  His mate Bayleaf who you spoke to before me, he thinks it is mainly what Gravel has done that has totally unhinged him, he was really struggling to cope with it being his Dad.   It looks like he drank three bottles of vodka rapidly and took eighty painkillers.  He is a doctor he would know exactly what those quantities of alcohol and painkillers would do to him."  All I can do is swear down the phone knowing my brother drove his own son to do this to himself.  "It was not only the overdose we were fighting he also gave himself acute alcohol poisoning."

I know all about alcohol poisoning, I'm surprised I never suffered from that after some of the binges I used to go on in my day.  That on its own can be fatal and generally is if not caught quickly enough and that is without even thinking about the overdose.

"Shit!!  So I take it all his organs have shut down, hence the full life support ... so what is the prognosis?  Tell me everything!!"  

"Prognosis - That's a strange word for you to know Granite!"  Mango comments.  I laugh to myself although I don't say anything, the last time he saw me I was probably high on drugs smashed out of my face on vodka and up to all sorts of criminal activities - now I'm a neurosurgeon like himself, but he would never expect that in a million years.  I am far from the person that left Sugar Valley all those years ago.

"Mango he doesn't have addiction problems does he?"

"Oh no!  He doesn't even drink alcohol as a rule!!"  he says which I'm releaved about because one thing I have learned from my group is that addiction can run in families.  "At the moment we can't say what the prognosis might be but it is looking a lot better now.  It took us over four days to completely stabilize him - we've had quite a few unpleasant episodes with him, two cardiac arrests, half a dozen seizures, partial and complete failure of all of his vital organs and total kidney failure ... he has been making slow progress over the past four weeks ... from here it is still just a waiting game.  One thing he didn't do is slip into a coma which we would have expected but the normal procedure in these cases is that we have put him into a controlled coma, to prevent worsening of any brain damage that might have occurred..."  I mumble from the seizures, arrest and rapid intake and quantities of alcohol and drugs consumed.  He sounds surprised as he says  "Yes exactly and when I found him his breathing was shallow to none existent, we don't know how long he was like that for.  Fingers crossed we hope there will be no more complications and that from here it's just like I've said a waiting game giving his organs time to heal and resume normal function which they are doing slowly."

"Is he breathing on his own?"  I ask him

"No not yet we haven't been able to remove any of the machines yet.  When his organs start functioning at a satisfactory level we can start trying to take him off the machines and when they have all been removed we can bring him out of the coma.  That's when we can check for brain or nerve damage. "

Mace walks into the room moaning about me still gassing on the phone.  I glance at my watch and notice he has got himself dressed in normal clothes and hasn't gone to his dinner.  He looks like he's in a right sulk as he drops a plate containing one of his cardboard sandwiches onto the bed.  This makes me angry on top of the phone call I'm having -  I work my bollocks off for him, it's not often that I ask him to cook for me and when I do all I get fed is one of his cardboard crap sandwiches.

"Can you just hold on one second Mango"  I say then cover the phone so he can't hear me.  "Mace you can stick that cardboard crap where the sun don't shine!!"  I kick the plate off the bed so it goes flying across the room and snap at him.  "ORDER ME A PIZZA - peperoni will do, and if that's too beneath whatever rung you've climbed to on that social ladder of your - you can pack your bags and get out of my house, find some other mug to sponge off and I'll find someone to shag who is on my level and not stuck so far up his own arse he's lost sight of reality!!"  I smile at him "and don't forget the fries!!"   

Mace glares at me as he storms out of the room not even bothering to pick the sandwich up - which is unusual, he usually would have had a hissy fit about me ruining his precious expensive carpet and breaking his bone china plate - but I guess that will come later!!  I slide off the bed and grab the waste paper bin and start picking up the bits of sandwich and broken plate that is splattered all over the room while I carry on talking to Mango.

"Sorry Mango ... you mentioned total kidney failure ... he'll need a kidney replacement I take it when and if he's ever strong enough to handle the procedure."

"Eerr yes!"  he sounds surprised and almost flustered again because I know what I'm talking about - but I'm enjoying leaving him to sweat because I think I already know what he wants me for and what the point of this phone call is - one of my kidneys.  "Of course that is a long way off yet but we have already tested a lot of people for kidney compatibility, family and friends, but unfortunately we have come close but are falling short ...."

"Gravel not giving up one of his kidney?"  I ask curious, thinking he is the most likely one of the two of us to be a better match.  "It wouldn't surprise me, the back stabber doesn't do anything unless its for his own benefit!!"  he laughs  "Seriously Mango you need to get your daughter away from him before he does a number on her, his brother now his son - she doesn't stand a chance!!"

"I'm far from happy about this I can tell you, but she thinks she's old enough to make her own decisions, she won't listen to me or her Mother so as far as I'm concerned she's made her bed now she'll just have to lie in it!  If he does do a number on her it will be her own fault and I think if the baby does turn out to be Slates that might just rock the boat a little!!"   Mango goes quiet for a moment because I think he's getting upset again.  "As for the kidney Gravel didn't need testing we could see he's not compatible - blood group incompatibility."   That shocks me!!  I decide to put him out of his misery as he is starting to stammer a little, probably building himself up to asking me.

"Why am I not surprised he is totally useless that brother of mine!!  So now we really get to the point of your phone call ... you want one of my kidneys!"  I start laughing  "My brother wants one of my kidneys for his boy but doesn't have the balls to ask me himself because of what he's done, so he gets you to do his dirty work for him!!  Which just about sums Gravel up really doesn't it!!"  Mango starts laughing 

"Yes that's about the gist of it!"

"Well you can tell the slimy creep if the kidney was for him I'd tell him to jog on!!  But his boy can have one of my kidneys if I'm compatible ... and before you even ask - I am healthy and clean and have been for many years - I don't drink, don't smoke, don't do drugs anymore, I don't need extra testing because of past drug and alcohol abuse, I've already had that done and everything is fit for donation!!  If you want I could get myself tested tomorrow, but I need to know Slates blood group because if that is not compatible to mine there is no point even getting tested is there."

"Granite ... why do you sound like you know what you are talking about?    he asks me finally - but I guess I will leave him sweating for a little longer, he will find out soon enough when he realizes I'm giving him a run for his money in neurosurgery!!  One of my main ambitions is to top anything that he has ever done, he just does not realize it yet.  "Slates blood groups is A ... Granite ... "  he seems to hesitate for a second  "While I'm happy you are willing to be tested and you say now Slate can have one of your kidneys if compatible, but maybe you need time to think about the kidney donation and find out what's entailed in a kidney transplant, people don't usually make such snap decisions on the spot."

"I'm A too that's lucky!!  I don't need to think about it - I know all about kidney donation, I've had a friend go through a kidney replacement, so I've already been tested once and know what I'm letting myself in for - For my friend I was not compatible and I was willing to do it for my friend and even more so for my own nephew!  Don't stress I know what I'm doing and I won't be changing my mind."   Which isn't a lie, I was not compatible enough to help my friend and now it looks like it was a good thing if I am compatible enough to help Slate.   "I will get myself retested tomorrow and get it faxed to you - you'll just have to let me know either way."

"Thanks Granite that's a huge weight off my mind, let's hope you are a good match ... "  he goes quiet for a moment.  "Gravel will be very surprised when I tell him we've found you and you are all clean and raring to go!  He told me I'd never find you because he thinks you are probably lay in some gutter somewhere as high as a kite."  he starts laughing.

"Yeah I bet he does!!  Actually Mango, I don't even want you to tell Gravel you have found or spoken to me ... leave him sweat he doesn't deserve to sleep at night!!"  I get a strange uncontrollable feeling wash over me - I want to go home.  "Actually I've just changed my mind ... I'll be on the first plane I can catch out there, hopefully tomorrow, and when I get there before the day is out I'll be punching his damn lights out and I don't want him to know it's coming!!"  he starts laughing  "I suppose it's about time I came home!!  You can run the tests when I get there!!"

I put the phone down when the call is ended and I just sit there staring at it, not really believing I've taken that call and that Gravel could stoop that low as to drive his boy to the lengths he has gone too.  

Mace walked into the room.  He throws the pizza box on the bed.

"Careful you'll give the pizza concussion!!"  I smile at him and get no reaction.  "That didn't hurt you did it?!"  I snap at him because he can't even crack a smile.  I open up the box and notice there are no fries.  "No fries?"  he shakes his head and says he forgot - yeah right!!  "Ham and mushroom is not pepperoni either is it - you know I HATE mushrooms!!"  

The aggravating berry hole I just knew he would do something in protest for having to have the disgrace of having a pizza van pull up outside the house.  He is getting really pathetic!!    

"Hope none of your friends saw the pizza van - did you see any twitching curtains?  Oh the shame!!"  I start howling at the look on his face.  "You do know you are going to be the bitching topic for the rest of the night, no week, now don't you!!"  I laugh at him as I start picking the bits of mushroom off the pizza.  "Just tell them it was for your lobster friends in the fridge, I'm sure your bitches will understand ... they are on death row after all ... they chose pizza for their last meal!!"

"Grow up Granite!!"  he snaps at me  "So ... where are we going?  I heard you say you are flying out somewhere."

"We?"  I frown at him "I am going home hopefully tomorrow, to Sugar Valley, there is a family drama going on and I'm needed."  he pulls a face 

"What your one brother who you haven't seen or spoken to in over 20 years?"  he snaps sarcastically.  I tell him I have a nephew who is critically ill in hospital  "I'll start packing our cases then."  he says and smiles at me.

"Who says you are coming with me ... Fudge Mace."  I frown at him  "You are starting to look really desperate and pathetic the way you are trying to cling to me all the time!!  You wouldn't like Sugar Valley anyway - no snobs or bitches and I could be gone for months and I don't want to leave the house empty that long - you'll be having a nervous breakdown if someone robs the place!!  Besides don't you have a dinner party arranged for tomorrow night, main course is chilling unhappily in the fridge!"  I laugh at the look on his face  "See I told you a tin of tuna was the way to go - that could have sat in the cupboard forever!!"

"Will you shut up about those DAMN lobsters - I don't find you funny anymore!!"  he snaps at me "Don't think you are going to leave me here on my own for months!!  Dinner is easily cancelled!!"

"Something else to add to your 'things I hate about Granite list' - unfunny!!"  I laugh at him  "That's exactly what I'm doing - leaving you here!!"

"Please take me with you!!"  he starts whining  "I promise I'll behave!!"  

I shake my head, I could seriously actually do with a break from him.  The space might help him remember what is really going on here!!  He frowns at me and asks me what is going on and why could it be months?  How can I get that much time off work?   His questions started coming thick and fast and were endless so I have to explain everything about Gravel and Slate.   I'm owed vacation time and I can take compassionate leave if necessary or even go on the sick if the kidney transplant happens.   The possible kidney transplant got the reaction that I expected - he started to kick off royal style - telling me I'm not doing it - I can't just give my kidney away and I haven't even discussed it with him ... we ended up having another bust up over it.

"I'm not stupid either Granite ... HE lives in Sugar Valley, so if you don't take me with you then you are not going - I'll tear up your passport!!"  I wandered how long it would be before he started throwing HIM at me!  "Finally I might get to find out what HIS damn name is and what he looks like!!"  he laughs sarcastically.

Mace has just made me think about my passport and suddenly I get a nasty feeling, I don't even know if my passport is still valid.  I have to get up off the bed and go into the draws to find it.  While I'm checking it Mace is behind me going on and on.  I know Mace is going to just carry on kicking off if I don't take him with me, even though I know he doesn't even have the right to demand anything from me - but he will carry on because he knows HE will be in Sugar Valley.

It hit me suddenly HE is going to be in Sugar Valley and so am I!!  Oh Hell!!  Maybe I should take Mace with me, if for no other reason he WILL keep me away from HIM, if he has his way I won't go anywhere near HIM and that is exactly what I need to do.  

"Okay I give up!!  You can come with me on one condition - you drop the snob act you quit the lies - we play reality in Sugar Valley right!! and if I catch one item of clothing in your case with a label on - I'm burning it!!"  

He grins then jumps on me.  He switches so easily, he's just got his way throwing another tantrum!!  Mace around Gravel - This is going to be a total nightmare!!

Straight away he runs off into the spare room and returns with two cases and starts rooting around in the wardrobe pulling out his clothes, he really makes me laugh sometimes.  He's now acting like an excited child who has never been on holiday before, when we have taken plenty of holidays together.  No doubt he'll be on the phone first thing in the morning telling all his friends I'm whisking him off on a super long romantic holiday to somewhere hot and expensive - I've heard how he stretches the truth just to make his friends jealous - it's really pathetic!!  I really don't know what is wrong with him, he was never like this when we met!!  I laugh to myself thinking I've got half a mind to send them a post card from Sugar Valley that will teach him a lesson!!

"Mace I'll pack my own case!!"  I tell him when he starts to mess among my clothes, there is no way he is sorting my clothes out.  "We will need to get up early we have a lot to do tomorrow seeing as you insist on coming and I'll need to pop into work to move my surgery schedule around."  

I mumble through a mouthful of pizza while I sit watching him throwing loads of clothes on the bed, trying to mix and match outfits, he's worse than any girl I've known over clothes and shoes!!

"I want those lobsters removing from the fridge I don't want to come back to find they've been wandering around the kitchen ..."  suddenly Mace starts howling hysterically "WHAT?!"

"You!!  For someone who is supposed to be so clever you aren't half thick sometimes!!"  he's having fits of laughter  "They'll fade in the fridge after about 48 hours out of water you idiot and how do you think they are going to get out ... open the door and let themselves out??!!"  he's almost doubled up and in stitches, its the first time I've seen him laughing so much for ages. 

"I knew that!!" I'm now laughing at my own stupidity  "See I'm way too tired I'm not thinking straight, I need to sleep.  Still I want them removing we don't need the house stinking of rotten fish!!"  he mumbles something about cleaning out the fridge tomorrow.  "and you can shift that lot off the bed - I need sleep and once I've booked the flight that is exactly what I'm doing, so leave the packing till in the morning.   

I laugh at him as he stops laughing and starts sulkily moves his clothes off the bed and throws them over the chair in the corner of the room - he seriously should have been a girl!!

"Here eat some pizza."  I hold out one of the slice to him  "It might help you remember who you used to be!"

He sits on the bed cross legged and just staring at me as he starts to eat pizza pulling faces as he chews it.  I laugh at him and start throwing pieces of mushroom at him, he just scowls at me.

"Fudge Gran stop it!!"  he says as he starts pulling faces at the mushroom splatted on his shirt  "You better hope mushroom doesn't stain - do you know how much this shirt cost?"  he seriously is no fun anymore - I can't even start a food fight with him!!  There have been times in the past when the whole food content of the fridge and cupboards has ended up splatted all over the kitchen after one of our epic food fights.

"Where did you go Mace?"  he frowns at me  "Oh I forgot ... silly me ... food fights are not allowed on that social ladder of yours!!  You always used to be fun and up for a laugh - where did you go?  Now you are just a miserable trout like your friends in the fridge - they didn't look too happy either!!"  I now keep mentioning the lobsters because I know it's annoying him.

I flip open my phone to check what flights are available. It is Tuesday and the first flight out that I can get seats on is not until Thursday morning, there is nothing I can do about it so that is what I have to do.  I book the first flight available, getting my wallet out to pay on my card.  I put the card down on the bed when it's paid for so that I can write the flight number and booking reference down that I will need to collect the tickets when we get to the airport. 

"We can't go till Thursday but you can still cancel dinner, I don't want to fly with a headache after listening to all your friends bitching all night!!"  I mumble but he says nothing.

My phone starts bleeping and I see I've received a text.  I'm a little amused Mango has sent me some pictures of Gravel and Slate that he has on his phone.  I laugh at a group picture that has a girl who I presume is Coral in between Gravel and Slate, they both have their arm around her - that would be about right!!  I keep laughing because I find it quite amusing even though it is pretty tragic - for Slate at least!!

"Who's that?  What are you laughing at?"  Mace asks me straight away like he always does when I get text, like he's paranoid.  "What are you looking at?"  he says as he comes over to look at my phone.

"Mango sent me some pictures of my brother and nephew that's all!!"  I snap at him as I show him the picture of Slate.

"He looks like you except for the nose"  he starts laughing

"Well he would, he looks like Gravel and we are very alike facially, all but the nose as you were quick to spot!!"  I smile at the picture  "I don't see Amber in him at all except for the orange.  Mango is right, the boy is definitely a Rock alright!"  I stare at the picture, seeing his face now makes him real.  I snap my phone shut after sending Mango a quick text to tell him which flight I'll be on and just sit there thinking.

"Where is your head at or might I guess!!"

"My head is ticking all over the place - I've had quite a few surprises tonight as well as hearing some stuff I really didn't want to hear!!"  he asks like what  "My Sister in Law, she faded when my nephew was born, that's sad, she was a really nice person - way too good for my useless brother!!"

"You really don't think much of him do you!!"  I laugh, he knows I don't I've slagged him off enough over the years.

"Mace you need to do something for me ... I know you love to tell everyone I'm a neurosurgeon but I want you to keep it to yourself, if they ask just say I work in the hospital."  he frowns and asks me why  "You will soon see Gravel will CONSTANTLY run me down and slag me off over my past, he'll be constantly digging at me.  I doubt he'll believe anything I tell him anyway - he will always think I'm a drunk, junky and criminal and I want to smack him in the face with it when I AM ready!!"  he laughs at me.   

"Okay, I'll keep your job a secret!!"  he smiles at me  "What about HIM?"

"I am warning you Mace - you and me are going to fall out big time if you go searching HIM out and you go causing trouble - you are to stay away from HIM, don't talk about HIM, ask questions or keep on at me over HIM because I'm seriously going to lose it!!"
"I doubt I'll have to search HIM out ... you'll be straight after HIM won't you!!"  he snaps at me sarcastically  "We will be in Sugar Valley where HE is - I must be stupid to let you even go there!!" 

"It makes no difference if HE lives in Sugar Valley or not!!  Just because I still love HIM and can't let go even after 20 years it doesn't mean HE is just as pathetic as I am ... HE is bound to have moved on and forgotten all about me by now.  I put HIM through hell and was dragging HIM down with me, HE deserved better than me ... I bet HE was glad to see the back of me five minutes after I left!!  Twenty years later we'll probably pass each other by in the street and while it will kill me, HE will probably not even bat an eyelid!"  I laugh at the look on his face  "I plan to avoid HIM, I don't even want to see or speak to HIM - I can't afford to, because it will just about finish me off!!  I wouldn't even be thinking about going home if it wasn't for Slate."

"Promise me you'll keep away from HIM!!"

"I have to keep away from HIM!!  If I don't I'll just fuck myself up especially if I see him moved on and with somebody else ... I'll be back on the drink and drugs before you know it and I'll be kissing goodbye to everything I've spent the past 20 years working so hard for especially my career - I've already lost everything once - I'm never going back there again - trust me!!!!"  he smiles at me  "Now I serious need sleep because I am about to pass out!!"

I pull off my tops and throw myself back on the bed and close my eyes glad we seem to have avoided another kick off.  I suddenly get this strange feeling wash over me, just the thought of going home - panic - it is almost scaring me, I could be about to make the biggest mistake of my life - I know I'm not strong enough to face HIM yet if he's moved on and forgotten me which he definitely will have done by now.

I feel Maces hand running up my leg then he starts to unbutton my trousers.

"Yeah make yourself useful, take my trousers off I don't have the energy!"  he removes my shoes then my trousers.  He starts kissing a trail up my leg as he crawls up the bed.  I seriously don't believe him!!

"Get lost Mace!!  Go do some social climbing or something.  If you want a shag wait till tomorrow or the gay bar is open till 3am - go pull - just quit bugging me because I am seriously getting sick of you not letting me sleep!!"

"I don't want anyone else I love you"  he mumbles in my ear

"You don't love me Mace ... I have been loved, HE loved me and you don't even come anywhere close!!"  he starts kissing my face and neck as he lies himself over the top of me.  


"Quit it Mace please!! I'm seriously too tired for this!!"  

He ignores me and carries on kissing my chest then he moves down onto my stomach.  I lose my temper as I push him off me - why does he never listen?!  HE would never have acted like this ... the more that Mace pushes me the more I realize I really don't want to be here anymore.  I want to be back there, I've always wanted to be back there!! - I'd give anything to be back there right now!!  Mace is just making me miss what I had with HIM even more!!! 

"For Fudge Sake Mace!!  What part of I need sleep and leave me alone don't you understand!!"  I shout at him angrily 

"And what part of I am SICK of being compared to HIM don't you understand?!"  he yells as he starts to storm off out of the room.  "I've had it!!  I'm going to the gay bar - don't wait up, hopefully I'll pull and be out all night!!"  he snaps at me  "You never know I might get a better shag and decide never to come back!!"

Please don't make me laugh - I'd never be that lucky - I know he'll be back here sniveling before the hour is out!!  I already know he's hesitating and is hovering by the door, probably hoping I'll call him back.  He is pathetic!!

"Good!!  Have fun - you never know you might get lucky and get to shag some arse tonight!!"  I laugh  "And if you do intend on returning don't forget to wear protection - I don't want to catch anything!"  I laugh as he swears at me. "If you do bring him back here, keep the noise down, I don't want you waking me up!!"

He tells me to go to hell as the bedroom door slams so hard the whole room seems to shake, I nervously watch the television rocking unsteadily on the wall expecting it to crash to the floor any minute, thankfully it doesn't.  

I hear the front door slam just as forcefully.

FINALLY peace and quiet!!

I roll over and close my eyes.  I am beginning to wander how and why I let this situation with Mace go so far - it is now starting to spiral badly out of control.  

How the hell am I going to put a stop to it now is my biggest worry!!

My mind skips back 20 years to what I had and what I lost which still really hurts and as usual HE is the last thing on my mind before I cry myself to sleep. 

Song = A Million More Years ~ Olly Murs

As I ended up slitting Gravel 1 into 2 parts I didn't have a song for this part - so I decided to use this one.   I know this song does not really fit this chapter too well but you do see glimpses of it.  This is Granites song and the whole reason why this situation is going on with Mace, and the song reflects how he's feeling.


  1. What the heck is he thinking letting Mace come with him!! This would be the perfect chance to take a break from the constant earache...(shaking my head)...men

    1. Granite needs Mace to keep him grounded. He's still struggling with the temptation of his alcohol addiction - Granite also still Loves HIM and can't let it go and thinks if he bumps into HIM and sees he has moved on then he'll go off the rails which he's fought hard not to do for over 20 years. That is part of the reason why he's never gone home