Chapter 4

Written by: Ken Burns

Jacques kicked the kerb getting out of the Audi. 

“Jesus!” He spat out while grabbing Bernard’s business card and having a closer look. As nosey as he was, Jacques noticed Bernard’s fingers were extremely long like they’d play a piano but his left hand had only three. No ring finger. Just a little stump below where the knuckle usually is. The thumb looked fine apart from a scabby wart. 

Jacques took the card while shaking an overly strong grasp. 

"We’ll catch up next week. I’ve got girls to chase now!” 

Bernard smiled like a friendly uncle as Jacques ran off to the party. 

Luke’s house belonged to his divorced father who had moved upstate to work. He’d left everything that was needed in the house to run it like a flat. The bills were paid monthly through direct debit so Luke had no stress about getting the money together. Jacques called him spoilt rich kid but kept that to himself. 

Students were obviously excited about this party as cars lined the road on either side. People streamed out onto the lawn. 

Jacques entered the lounge, barging past a group heavy drinkers trying to find Emily. 

“Watch it pussy boy!” shouted the short drinker with a bottle of whiskey in his hand. 

Jacques turned around, looked him in the eye and held out his hand. 

“Sorry man,” he shouted clearly because the music was cranked up. 

Never a fighter, Jacques knew the way to get out of a punch up was to admit defeat before it even started. He was confident enough to take any grief that was thrown at him by others. 

"Ahh...no worries!” shouted back the boozer. “Have fun.” 

The boozer leant over the porch balcony and power vomited onto the grass. Luke’s dog, an over friendly Labrador ran over and started to eat what was still warm. Everyone burst out laughing as the short drinker raised his sweaty head with bloodshot eyes wiping his mouth on the bit of t-shirt that tucked into ill-fitting jeans. 

Jacques ambled his way into the kitchen which was standing room only onto the back porch. He felt nervous but excited about seeing Emily. 

He heard laughter from a familiar voice at  the very end of the porch. Emily clearly had the group surrounding her entranced. She used her hands for expression as well as an astute barrage of words. 

Jacques sauntered around the periphery hoping she would see him. He bobbed his head up to catch her beautiful eyes. This was clearly a close knit group that Emily was entertaining. To get closer meant having to barge in like he did coming into Luke’s house. 

Not in the mood for the same event twice he walked down to the back of the garden, sat in a rusty swing chair and pulled out his cell phone. He logged in Bernard’s number under the title 3 fingers. He looked at his list of numbers. Found mum and hit call.

Comments

My goodness Ken, your writing has come such a long way! This has flow and description of characters and events. The detail of Bernard's three fingers opens an avenue for a story line all of it's own.
Just one point...how does the point about his vomiting add to the story, or to the character? There has to be a reason for all the information we put into a story. That did feel a bit gratuitous.
It's labour intensive getting it right. Like anything anyone wants to do well, just keep doing it instead of holding it all in your head. Your audience has to believe it or they'll turn off. I always write some real life fun that readers will understand/relate to. eg a dog eats the vomit.
Some great humour here, Ken. You've got the teenage viewpoint just right.
What a great chapter, Ken. You have opened up many avenues for the next writer. I wonder where the story will go now.