Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Alcohol Free
Being off alcohol for a month has been an unqualified success. One of the benefits has been a clear mind. This has allowed me to finally finish my novel. Here's the final chapter...Bianca picked up her pace, she didn't like walking in the dark and the sun was itching to leave the evening sky. The cold wind repeatedly played with her long ginger hair, rearranging it across her face. Her view sometimes obscured, her avoiding of people and objects was often last-minute and clumsy.
She clocked an old women sat on a wall ahead of her, face hidden by a red scarf worn around her head. Bianca focused past the figure and carried on.
"Bianca!", the voice came from behind.
She stopped and took a sharp intake of breath. Slowly she turned around and wiped the hair away from her eyes. "Ricky?" she froze, and stared as the old women stood up and removed the scarf and long coat.
"Yes Bianca, it's me"
"You should have told me you were a robot Ricky. I would have understood."
"I just didn't know how to tell you", said Ricky, bouncing up and down in agitation. Then relaxing he eased himself back down onto the wall. "I wanted to tell you In Tesco yesterday, but finding that celery made you so happy, I didn't have the heart to spoil your day. "
Bianca opened her handbag, her wavering voice caught the wind, "I'm only doing this because I love you Ricky." And slowly she pulled out a Type 4 phaser from the open bag. Her arm raised with a nervous purpose, the phaser aimed straight at Ricky's eyes.
"You destroyed my spaceship and now you want to kill me? You fire that thing and a little piece of you dies forever Bianca."
Tears began to show themselves on Bianca's eyes, her arm shaked violently as she jolted and pulled down on the trigger. The yellow beam missed Ricky's head by an inch and blew up a plate of scones left on top of an old cat. His sprung legs contracted then released projecting him quickly towards Bianca who fired again.
The metal body arched and turned a dark purple, eyes shooting out of his head with little parachutes bringing them gently to the ground. Bianca covered her face as his frame then shone a bright white, morphing slowly into a metallic gravestone. She walked over and read the epitaph, "Here Lies Ricky, he was a robot after all. Please Recycle". Carefully she lent down and picked up the eyes. "I'll always love you Ricky" she said, placing them in her mouth and starting to chew.
After another ten minutes walk she was there. With tired legs she walked into the smoky room she knew so well and up to the bar. "I'll have a J4O Mike", her eyes were adjusting to the dim smoke filled atmosphere,
"Not today" replied the rather heavily Side-burned barman, "I've just got this", he said throwing a tea towel to the floor, revealing a pump.
"Alcohol?" said Bianca startled, "But.how?"
"Pint of Stella, me lady?"
She thought back to her school days. To the history classes she'd had, learning about the Third World War. The bloody war started by Tony Blair allegedly knocking over Vladimir Putins pint at a UN Leaders Reception. The famous Blair speech "I did not knock over his pint but I will knock over Moscow – The Tosser." Putin's famous war-cry "He looked at me funny, let's get 'em". And after those long and bloody years, the taste for drinking was lost and nobody mentioned beer or 'England' again.
But that was a long time ago. Bianca looked down at the beer, then around at the sad, bored people sitting around. She nodded and a golden pint of Stalla was placed upon the bar. Smiling nervously she lifted the glass and sipped a mouthful off froth from the top of her cold golden lager. "Oh my God", she smiled and turned to face everyone. An audience intrigued to see this golden liquid.
"It's beer", she said addressing the patronage of 'The Sportsman' as the hairy barman beamed behind her, "It's got alcohol and it's beer. It's beery, look at it". She held it up above her head, the eyes of every patron following the Godly glass.
Mike the barman brought out a strange tattered flag, a red cross on white background "It's called the St George Cross" he shouted rolling it out to show all that looked on. In a bar now silent, he continued. "The last one in existence. What this girl holds in her hand, well?" his stare darted to the floor before looking back up and catching the eyes of all that sat before him,"…is what this flag stands for. "
Shock and fear covered the face of every man, women and android in the bar as the Jack took the flag and stuck it above the bar.
Ten long silent seconds passed till finally a man near the back of the pub rose slowly from his stool, his white face gradually recapturing colour, "I'll have one too, if you're buying" he smiled. "And me", another man rose from their stool, "and me" and another and another, and everyone started to clap, hesitantly at first, and then faster. The applause turned to cheering. There was laughter smiling and hugging. Tears of happiness rolling off cheeks of men and women of every size, creed and nationality.
The night went on, beer and wine and alcohol of all flavours were drunk by all. Once more laughs were laughed and vomit covered the porcelain toilets. Public-order broke down and people talked crap about things they had little or no knowledge of. "Universities" found that people wanted to be students again and as darkness came, people collapsed happy in the gutter. Everyone knew where they were and after 500 sober years, it was England again.

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