“Well. This is nice,” I said as I walked in after them. A lady in a nightie was just disappearing upstairs as we came into the centre of the pub.
“Sort yourselves out!” she said in a distinct London cockney accent. “Good night.”
“Night!” shouted Chad after her.
"Who was-" I began, then stopped myself. I was fed of questions. Especially unanswered ones.
Chad hopped over the bar.
It was a really nice bar – definitely not your standard kind. Again, I was embarrassed to even think that I could not call out the wood that comprised the entire smart alcove, granting the bar its prestigious appearance. I was beginning to wonder where my expertise and knowledge actually lay.
The stools seats were covered with black leather with a back to them, making them extra comfortable as we sat down.
“So,” said Chad clapping his hands together. “What’ll it be?”
Chad was now staring at me with extra wide eyes, still deliberately showing that he was tolerating my presence and would probably spit in my glass if the bar held a backroom. Before I answered, I scanned the wall behind him where the finest of liquors lined a shelf near the ceiling.
I instantly recognised a drink that jogged the memory – I like whisky. It’s good stuff. Sometimes, I would deliberately select the rough stuff, just to get that extra pang.
“Chris, are you remembering something?” said Eden, who was now staring at the side of my face with more interest than she had showed since Chad had arrived on the scene.
“Yeah,” I said. “Yeah I am. Chad, fix me a Johnny Walker Blue label – two cubes of ice.”
“Just call it Blue Label arsehole,” said Chad. “Christ.”
I shook my head and looked back at Eden. She smiled as if she knew this particular beverage preference of mine. As if she were a proud mother watching her son recite the correct lines in his first school play – I definitely didn’t want our relationship to be perceived as such though, but her glowing grin was aligned with that type of emotion.
Chad placed the glass down in front of me without looking in my direction. “And what will lady be having?” he said.
“I’ll have the same,” she said. Chad almost flinched.
“Sure,” he said and I saw him grab two glasses and pour the whisky.
“So Chris,” he said as he returned to us and placed the glasses down. He leaned forward over the bar antagonistically and sipped his drink. “Do you even know how old you are?”
I shook my head. “30's, I think.”
“This guy is useless Eden.”
“Look mate,” I said. “I don’t know why you’re being like this, but leave it out. Seriously. Just leave it out.”
“Or what?” he said and leaned over the bar closer.
I tensed my jaw. I received an overwhelmingly familiar feeling in the stomach. A feeling that screamed 100% confidence as my fists clenched and my body automatically rose from its chair – slow. Slow enough to invoke a fear in Chad that moved in proportion with the speed my body was moving. I was slightly taller as my head came about level with his. But my height wasn’t the source of my power. It was my eyes. Deadly. Fierce. Uncompromising. I stared at Chad - no blinking. Dark pupils that showed nothing but focus and the promise that I-WOULD-WIN. Dead eyes that said I could kill him and not feel an ounce of it.
“So Chad,” I said. “What do you wanna do?”