I looked down and saw a small red box on the floor with my name written on it in black characters. I kneeled down, took it and opened it. To my huge surprise, there was a black diamond charm in the shape of a cat, shining with an amazingly rich and deep shine. There was also a tiny handwritten note saying “You’re all I want. Ed.”
I definitely couldn’t accept that present. I could see problems coming. I sighed.
I went back to the room and rapidly hid the red box underneath my string with a fast movement of my hands, but it fell on the floor. Bob had just got up and saw it.
- Who knocked on the door, Len? –he asked-
- Euh… I don’t know, probably someone from the hotel housekeeping did by mistake. But I couldn’t see anyone. –I answered-
- What’s that? –he said, pointing at the red box-.
Unfortunately, I had no choice but lying:
- It’s a charm that my granny gave me some time ago –I said, in a great display of talent-
Grrrrrr... what a whopper! I turned back; opened the box; quickly removed Ed’s note so that Bob wouldn’t see it and showed him the charm.
- It’s very beautiful. Are you wearing it at the wedding? - he asked-
All of a sudden, he sniffed the air and asked me:
- Len... have you been smoking?
That question scared the hell out of me. I forgot to remove the ashtray where Ed had left his cigarette the night before. And his glass of Scotch!
So I had no choice but to invent a second lousy white lie. I got closer to him, stroke his chest and said:
- Err… hehehe, I missed the smoke of your blunts, baby. I had a drink and felt like lighting a cigarette. Really don’t know why I did that. A silly whim of mine, I suppose –I giggled-
What a bloody cheat. I neither drink nor smoke. In Sandwich we say that you can catch a liar faster than a cripple. It explained my fear so perfectly.
Of course, my answer was shit; strange; not credible; but I conveniently disguised it with a cute tiny kiss, and things seemed to be settled; at least for the moment.
At 6:00PM, as agreed with Hellgirl the day before, the Percy man came to fetch us. I felt very disappointed to see him in his human shape again, formally dressed with a black tuxedo.
- Good evening, honey. –said Percival-
- Good evening Percy. Long time no see. –I said-
- Hellgirl keeps me real busy, Leni. –he said-
- Let me introduce you to Bob, my boyfriend. -I said- Bob, this is Percival… whatever. –I couldn’t remember his distinguished family name-
- Von Der Twit-Wingnutty of Twatshire. –said Percy-
They shook hands formally. When Bob went to the room to get his jacket, I asked Percy with a low voice:
- Has Hellgirl forgiven you yet? She said you to me you had the tiny red demon shape again.–I asked-
- That's right, but I can’t walk through the streets of New Calexico as a red demon, or the FBI would put me under arrest and use my body as part of their biogenetic experiments. You silly girl. Hellgirl gave me back my human shape temporarily. I’ll be back to devil mode at the party. Does your boyfriend know about Hellgirl and me?
Percy looked very concerned about that. He had a white limo waiting for us at the hotel entrance. On our way to Lilly’s ranch, he asked Bob:
- So I bet you must have heard about us, Bob, right? Because we have heard a lot about you in Hell.
Bob stared at Percy, not knowing what to say.
- Bob, remember when I said to you I see supernatural people? –I asked-
- Yes.-he answered-
- Well, Percy is one of them.
Bob started freaking out, and Percy sent a red paralyzing light beam right to his chest.
- I can't stand these thin-skinned blokes! You should give Ed a chance, Leni. He’s handsome, clever and filthy rich. He will publish all your books if you only ask nicely. And he’s crazy about you. This Bobby man is a crappy dude. Everybody knows that Hell people exist! How can he possibly not believe that? -said Percy-
- Don't be rude, Percy! I love him and that's that. Now bring him back to the world, please. And I hope he is feeling good.
- Ok, dear, but he won’t remember anything of what has just happened here.
Percy snapped his fingers and Bob went back to reality. The three of us were quiet for the rest of the trip.
When we arrived in Lilly’s ranch, the guests were redirected to the hen or stag party upon their arrival. Then, there would be a disco party for all, men and women.
- I feel very uncomfortable with that stag night invitation, Len. I haven’t forgotten yet that horrible fight Max and I had on the phone not so long ago –said Bob-.
- I’m afraid you can’t skip it. I’ll see you then at the disco party. –I said-
Percy made a hit at the hen party with his red top hat. He was flying completely naked, escaping from the crowd of pissed women who were running after him like headless chickens and screaming like banshees.
- Leni!!! Save me!!! –shouted Percy-
- They just want your sex, Percy! Oh, nice mini-package by the way –I laughed-
Hellgirl approached me and offered a glass of mysterious drink.
- Drink it in one gulp, Leni. It’s virtual DMT. You’ll get high. -she said-
- Hellgirl, I’m not on drugs. Never been and never will be.
- Honey, virtual drugs are not addictive, and therefore neither dangerous nor harmless. I grant you can have as much as you want from them, just as if they were candies. Actually, I’m high on virtual barbituates now. Hm… this track is too slow… -she said, at the sound of the super speedy song-
She convinced me, as she always did. I took a deep sip from my glass and all of a sudden, my left hand seemed to grow bigger and bigger.
- Whooooooooaaaaaaaaaaa!!! –I wowed, under the effects of the drink, amazed at the changing shape of my hand-
- Alright girls? Do you know where I can buy some virtual ecstasy tablets? –asked Percy-
- Get lost, pig! – said an unknown girl who heard him ask-
- I think the guy in red down there has some –said Hellgirl, dropping four of these tablets into Percy’s glass when he was not looking-.
Lilly and Max were leaving the disco. She didn’t seem to be feeling well.
- She’s having a bad trip. Too much virtual Rohypnol –whispered Hellgirl into my ear-
Percy had recovered his human appearance again and was shirtless dancing with two gay dudes, shaking his big belly from one side to the other. Hellgirl said to me:
- Percy is not into men, but after the overdose of ecstasy he could fuck all day, even in the ass. Talking about fuck… Leni, where’s your Bobby dude?
- I don’t know, I haven’t seen him since we got here.
- Hm… I’d love to meet him. Let’s look for him.
A stoned guy tried to hold the reflection of the laser ray that moved to the rhythm of the music. A general view of the dance floor showed at least three hundred people dancing and frantically jumping at the sound of some hypnotic trance music.
We crossed the dance floor and headed to the gents.
- I bet the Bobby bloke is here –she said-.
She opened the door and we went in. Most guys were doing their own thing at the urinals. No one paid attention to us.
A small group was peeing onto the wall. Bob was among them, jumping nervously like a monkey, splashing the wall with tiny droplets of… ew.
- Mind your step, Leni. It gets on the soles of your shoes and the tips of your shoelaces. Not to mention your beautiful red Manolos that probably costed you a fortune. –she said, pointing at my high heels-
- Jeeez… why don’t they just pee in the bushes? They don't even have to sit down!
I stepped back, disgusted.
- Heeeeey Len! –shouted Bob-
He zipped his jeans and approached us jumping all his way.
- He’s high on virtual uppers, Leni. But don’t worry. He’ll be fine tomorrow. -said Hellgirl-
Bob carried me in his arms and we hopped along to the dance floor. We lost Hellgirl.
The effects of virtual DMT appeared stronger in me as I finished my drink: I started strip-pole-dancing for Bob in the middle of the dance floor. Although he was too busy monkey-jumping, my dance certainly made a hit.