This the beginning of a long-short-story or maybe novella or something I started and gave up on. I don’t have an outline and don’t entirely remember where I was going with it. Anyway.
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Blanford didn’t know what these pills were anymore. Ecstasy was fairly self-explanatory- but Vicodin? Xanax? Klonopin? Whatever happened to Quaaludes?
Jimmy Blanford knew Quaaludes, knew the velvety texture of the capsules (he would have called it “sensual” if he was the kind of guy to use words like “sensual”), knew the way then felt on your tongue, knew once the right doctors in Beverly Hills to get the prescriptions from- knew the Beverley Hilton pool one long-ago sub-tropical night in 1974, knew that German girl and the feel of her wet bathing suit and the three hundred dollar brandy they used to wash down the pills- knew the hallway back to the presidential suite, and the German girl on the big bed covered with gift baskets from fans and a guitar bought for twelve thousand dollars, cash, somewhere between Mobile, Alabama, and Fort Worth, Texas.
But all that was in another time- not just another time, another world, as if a door to some fairytale of his damp English childhood had been opened and then just as quickly slammed shut in his face. “That’s not bad,” Blanford thought, out loud, and almost reached for the pen on the nightstand, here in Los Angeles, 2006. Or was it 2007 now?
Outside his window, through the blinds that had been drawn for three weeks straight, the absurdly bright California sun- (the sun in Southern California is always absurdly bright to an Englishman, like some kind of cosmic practical joke, even thirty-odd years after his first touchdown at LAX) – beat down on tourists and second-tier agents by the mediocre hotel’s mediocre swimming pool.
Blanford’s hand moved onto the little hotel pen, and rested there a moment. A razor-thin slice of ridiculous California sunlight crept through the blinds and rested on the phone that never rang anymore. His hand moved past the pen and towards the pills. He hadn’t been a total waste, had he? They had come to see him in thousands, ten of thousands, hadn’t they? And not just to get stoned and try for a blowjob in the carpark after- they had come because they wanted something. And he had given it to them.
He had, hadn’t he? Wasn’t he entitled to this? Hadn’t he earned it, so many times over? Hadn’t he done enough for those fuckers?? Who could say he hadn’t?
Blanford’s hand was resting on the pill bottle when the phone rang.