They’d been working in the studio most of the morning and afternoon. It was Barney and Babakar and Vlad and they were helping their friend John McGrail out with his next single. They’d gotten a lot done. For some reason John, who was a good guitar player, wanted Barney to play on this particular tune. Babakar was just there to oversee things. He’d been in the country working on trying to decide what tunes were to be included in the next Headwhiz CD and John had asked him to come by and loan him his ears expertise. Vlad he wanted because he was a better bassist than himself and he too was in town for personal reasons. He wouldn’t tell anyone what they were though…. He was being a little on the mysterious side. John had told Babakar that he thought he’d fallen in love but he was just speculating and that he had no real evidence of it. It turns out he was correct. Vlad had met a woman who he found intriguing but who also seemed to like him. This was something he rarely encountered. Vlad was a good guy but he was no “chick magnet” as Barney described Jean-luc. So when John said they were done for the day that usually meant having a few cocktails and heading to the Mind Fry Kitchen for some dinner. John would often do the cooking. Tonight it was Lamb Burritos. When Vlad declined to stay saying he had to get back to his room at the hotel, that he really wanted to get a swim in, no one gave him any shit because they were all assuming he was really going off to meet with his true love, which was correct even though no one had any evidence to support their conclusion.
So the remaining 3 went into the kitchen and John started to prepare the food. He was taking a bunch of ground lamb and adding spices and some pine nuts and rolling them into tubes that would then get grilled like a hot dog and then rolled up in a tortilla, flour, with feta cheese, lettuce, tomatoes onions and some diced up kalamata olives. He had Barney cut up some raw cucumber and green pepper to serve as crudités. That would be the meal... simple but good. Of course they would start with cocktails before they actually cooked and ate. Babakar was in charge of the drinks and he made 2 Manhattans using Makers Mark whiskey for John and Barney and poured a glass of Pinot Noir for himself. They went into the backyard of the Mind Fry complex and sat around the grill as John got the coals going.
“So you really think Vlad has met some chicky poo?” Barney queried John.
“I do although I’ve no solid evidence. It’s just that he has always joined us for the post session drinks and dinner. So something must be up. He wouldn’t say why he was in the country either which seemed odd. Still it’s good to see him and I love the part he did on “It Doesn’t Matter”. That was the song they’d been working on.
“I hope you’re correct John.” Babakar interjected “I think deep down we all want to be loved but with Vlad I’ve always felt he wanted it more than others.”
“Except for Robert towards Brett.” Barney chimed in. Babakar vaguely nodded his head knowingly. John said “Not going there Barn. Not going there.” Robert’s obvious affection for Lady Brett Fastley was something everyone was aware of, including Lady Brett, but no one spoke much of despite the occasional awkward moments.
In the meantime Vlad had rode his bicycle back to his hotel room and carried it up the stairwell to the third floor and put it in his room. He then changed into some shorts to swim in and pulled a tee-shirt on when there was a knock at the door. He opened it and there was Melissa. She was short with light brown hair and was considerably younger than Vlad, probably 15 years or so.
“Come in” he said smiling and she entered the hotel room. It was just a Ramada and it wasn’t one of the better Ramada’s either, but J. Kinslow wasn’t footing the bill, Vlad was. It did have an indoor pool. “Want to swim.” He said to Melissa. She smile and moved close to him and kissed him. Then they kissed a few more times until she finally pulled back and said “In a bit, but first…” and she reached into her large purse and pulled out a bottle of Grey Goose Vodka and held it up. “Let’s have a couple of these. Why don’t you fill the ice bucket while I change into my swimming togs? So Vlad was off to get ice and Melissa stepped into the bathroom and put her suit on. It was a one piece. She was modest and was afraid of going out in public with a bikini on. She stepped out of the bathroom just as Vlad came back. He put a couple cubes into each glass; Melissa had also brought 2 glasses so they didn’t have to drink out of cheap plastic cups, they both agreed that good vodka in plastic was an abomination, if it could be avoided. They also both agreed that if that was the only option it was to be used. They sat on the bed next to each other talking and sipping their drinks. Vlad turned on the news.
“Nothing particularly great in the world tonight.” He observed as the first story involved the paparazzi and the Royal family.
“Yeah there is.” Melissa said. Vlad looked at her questioningly. “Us, we’re together I think that is particularly great. Don’t you?” she said.
“Of course.” He said. They threw back their drinks and eventually got to the pool and swam but it was closer to 10 PM. The pool closed at 11 so they almost missed it.
Back at the Mind Fry complex the 3 guitarists sat jamming on acoustics in the back yard having eaten their lamb burritos and crudités. They had also knocked back a few drinks. Between jams John and Barney would stop and humorously speculate as to what Vlad was doing at that moment, sometimes quite graphically. Babakar refrained from joining in the speculation.