didnothingwrong: (Default)
[personal profile] didnothingwrong
It's been an age since Alvo's rung him up, and longer still since the last time he saw him face to face. So, when Bax gets the call from Heathrow saying he's up for business, and wants to see the boys round the old pub before he heads back, Bax is eager to agree. Work's been shite lately, and it's made things at home tense.

A night away from the girls? Hell yes.


He's the first to show up, of course. Perhaps a bit too eager there, Bax. He snags their old table, a bit smug and all, and settles in for a pint.

The boys won't mind if he gets a head start.

Date: 2012-03-17 07:23 pm (UTC)
alvo: (drink up)
From: [personal profile] alvo
He's not that bad, is he? Well, yes, he is, but come on, it's been years and everyone needs to lighten up. Life's serious enough without this reunion turning into some sort of misery pissing contest, isn't it?

"You know, Bax, I never had the touch. Not of any kind." Look at him: nearing forty, no one in his life who cares. "But if you think I have, then I'm a bigger success than I knew." Laughing, he raises his glass to each of his mates in turn. "You're all a bunch of bastards, you know that, don't you? Don't worry, I include myself in the count."

He could list their endearing qualities off the top of his head: Quinn takes himself so seriously, not that he's ever had a lot to laugh about but it suits him. Someone's got to be the serious one. Bax lies, always has, and if he wanted to play shrink he could say it's because he's never valued himself the way he ought to do: he's got so much heart, Bax. And Woody, tightly-wound and self-effacing, but the most open and honest of any of them. As far as his own flaws go, he's a pain in the arse, too quick to hold up the mirror to everyone's face but his own, but that's only because he knows where he falls down. That's not something he's willing to spend time thinking on, not at the moment.

If Rick was here, he'd be oblivious as always. It's not that he's stupid -- anything but -- although he gives off a good impression. Still, people see something in him, and he's got that open gregarious cheerful scorn thing going, and he pulls it off so convincingly.

"Look, I... I know it's been a long time. You want to hear stories? I can tell you stories. But they're only going to make you want to join me on the island, and I honestly don't know if I can stand the idea of none of you being over there with me. Or of all of you being over there with me."

It's just a backwards way of inviting them, yet again. He might not miss London, but he misses them. Maybe by the end of the next round they'll start to realize that.

Date: 2012-03-22 03:56 am (UTC)
smilebigboy: (he was rough around the edges)
From: [personal profile] smilebigboy
That's Quinn and Bax, all right. Quinn with the backhanded sniping but still relaxed, keeping the mood light and easy. In a lot of ways he's always been the keel of their group. Always keeping things in mind. Always watching. Touchy sometimes, maybe, but he settles them and draws them together with comments as sharp as Alvo's.

And then Bax, steady with his family. He's maybe the most changed, and the least. It's strange seeing him tonight and thinking father, businessman. And not just thinking, but seeing. He looks...older. Not old, but an adult. Sometimes Woody still sees a spotty teen when he looks at Alvo, at Rick -- not so much at Quinn but when he was a spotty teen he already looked like an adult -- but Bax has changed.

Grown up. Like everyone else.

Still. "Not as bad as all that, is it?" Woody fiddles with his glass, drags a finger around the rim and watches Alvo curiously from under his eyebrows. "You must have mates there, yeah?"

Date: 2012-03-24 10:57 pm (UTC)
imholdingcereal: (Can function without phones)
From: [personal profile] imholdingcereal
It was oddly sweet and very fucked up how Alvo was lately. The bloke ground on his last nerve, talk down to him and annoyed everyone in his own special way and yet among all the bullshit and bollocks the bastards spouted out, there was some real goodness that sparked there. Just a lonely bloke who has no mates, little sad really.

Though just because he was a miserable bastard didn't mean Quinn would let him get away with anything. He was a miserable bastard as well and Alvo never cut him any slack. But, well, lead by example.

"We should organise a date," Quinn remarked, speaking of the visit of course. That was, by large, his contribution here. He didn't want to handle the actual planning but if it stopped Alvos 'bastard' speeches, it was fine by him. "You'll have to translate, mind, never could be arsed to learn another language."

He didn't get how Alvo could when he still couldn't get basic English right half the time.

Date: 2012-03-25 10:53 pm (UTC)
alvo: (it's perfectly safe)
From: [personal profile] alvo
"A third of the island, Bax, not half." Even if it's a joke, real estate's not a bad way to go. At least it keeps the wolves from the door, not that the ones in Spain are any more or less threatening than the ones here. "And I'll tell you what: you're on. I'll make the plans." Not to rub things in, but, well, someone's got to get the thing started. "Send you the tickets. Send a car round to the aeropuerto. Take you to the best cantinas, hook you up with all the seƱoritas you want and I won't even tell a soul about it." A soul here, he means.

"We'll do it, yeah? I've got a trip scheduled to the mainland coming up, but as soon as I'm back, I'll do it. With one caveat: that none of you back out of the trip." He accentuates that with a raise of one eyebrow, by pointing round the table to each of them in turn.

"It's lovely there in the summertime. Do we have a deal, then?"

Their faces: bless, look at their faces. All of them. Each and every one of them shows his feelings in a completely different way. It's why they've always worked so well together, even while they've been at odds.

Date: 2012-03-26 07:53 am (UTC)
smilebigboy: (love it when you come together)
From: [personal profile] smilebigboy
Oh, and there's an idea. Woody sips at his Coke and lets his eyes go far away for a moment, imagining it. Sea and sun and surf, pretty ladies -- not that he'd do anything but look but looking isn't against any rules that he knows of -- good food, good company (if no one kills anyone else within five minutes, a cynical part of his mind pipes up). Relaxation. Not a care in the world.

Money, of course. He has to think about money but unless he's pretty damn confused that's what Alvo's offering. Tickets, transportation, whatever they need. He might even have a job by then. Little extra pocket change and if not, well.

His face splits in a grin and he leans back, taps his fingers on the table. "It's a deal by me. Couldn't let you rattle about all lonely up there, could we?"

He hopes the others will agree. They will, he thinks. They might fight it -- Rick won't, but Bax maybe with his girls, and Quinn being Quinn but -- no, he thinks, they'll come. And if they don't, well. He and Alvo are close. Always have been. Maybe he'll try and find some way up on his own, if he can.

Date: 2012-03-28 08:42 pm (UTC)
imholdingcereal: (Sun glasses are awesome)
From: [personal profile] imholdingcereal
Quinn tilted his chair back, he knew there would be some sort of condition, made sense really but he'd been hoping that Alvo wouldn't put one on the trip. Well, either way, he wasn't going to be the one to call Rick. Not that he hated the bloke or anything, he just didn't fancy having his conversation again.

"Fine."

Ah, a true man of many words. Quinn sipped his pint and let his chair fall back down, he was never one to be overly elaborate when it came to situations like this, it was both a failing and a skill he had. His daughters hated it, his work colleagues loved it. Course he was capable of being elaborate when it came to talking about the unnecessary. Just part of being a lecturer.

"You'll have to ring me whenever you lot have a date."

Date: 2012-03-28 10:02 pm (UTC)
alvo: (drink up)
From: [personal profile] alvo
"So long as someone calls him. If you change your mind on that, Bax, I'll do it myself."

Sometimes, the old exasperations come back with a vengeance: he wishes Quinn wouldn't be so bloody taciturn. That he would smile, stop being such a prick on general principle. He wishes Woody would say what he's thinking -- he can see the processing going on, but the words are few and far between, although he's good-natured -- and he wishes Bax wouldn't be so accommodating. But he has to chalk that up to parenting teen daughters, something he's never been brave enough to so much as contemplate. Even though he's absent at the moment, he wishes Rick wouldn't stick in their craws the way he does, but the group wouldn't be the same without him. It wouldn't. It takes the lot of them to make whatever sort of whole... um... entity they are.

There's only one thing to say, now he's made the offer. It'll be a chunk of cash out of his bank account, not theirs: a holiday should be fun. It shouldn't present any sort of hardship.

"All right, then. It's about time you" -- he lifts his glass to each of them in turn -- "got a taste of my corner of the world."

In every sense of the word. He's well aware this holiday could take years to plan, people being who they are, schedules being what they are. As long as he knows it's going to take place eventually, he has something to focus on beyond the everyday business of pretending to love every fucking thing about Spain, beyond keeping up appearances, beyond the hollowness of the life he's carved out for himself. Whether he plays host to his friends in five weeks or five months or five years, he has that to look forward to.

Without being maudlin, he would say he loves them all very much. It's something he wouldn't ever give voice to, though.

Date: 2012-03-29 02:18 am (UTC)
smilebigboy: (he was rough around the edges)
From: [personal profile] smilebigboy
Woody lifts his glass back, smiles without a word and finishes the last of his soda. Swirls the ice cubes for a moment and listens to them clink against the bottom, privately glad that they're already got Rick covered. They...well, they get along and hell, there was a time where they were probably the closest together, during their wilder days. And he still likes him, they're mates. The whole group are.

It's just, well. Sometimes he's hard to talk to. Moreso these days, it seems. Just as well that Bax or Alvo does it. Anyhow it sounds like they're all decided and well he figures there's a more than good chance it's just a pipe dream, something they'll talk about for months and years without ever seeing it come to pass, it's a nice thought. A fun dream.

He taps his fingers over the table again, knows he's spent more of the evening absorbed in his own thoughts than he has chatting. Not that he's chatty usually. He's never seen the point in going on without really saying anything, and he's never had the gift of gab the way some have.

So he doesn't say anything else, just sits back and watches, and listens, and thinks that for all it's a little rough around the edges this is one of those moments he wants to keep in his mind for as long as he can.

Date: 2012-03-30 11:30 pm (UTC)
imholdingcereal: (Contemplation)
From: [personal profile] imholdingcereal
Quinn half lifts his glass, not big on giant displays of affection. Yes, he did care for each of them greatly and while admittedly he got on better with some more than others, they were his only friends. He wasn't a social bloke, he probably wouldn't ever make any more so he didn't have many reasons to avoid them. Sometimes he just accepted that everyone had flaws and it helped him relax. Some sort of weird Zen-y thing perhaps?

"I'm sure Bax can handle Rick and we can handle ourselves, little telephone tree, it won't be hard to set up. Got three weeks of leave a year, won't be longer than a week I suppose?"

Reasonable amount of time to be in a foreign country and it should be enough time that he won't want to choke Alvo... well, perhaps not. Might be two days into it before that happens but still, he only had to stay as he was. He knew his stoic manner got right under the other mans skin.

He shouldn't find that so amusing but he does.

Date: 2012-03-31 05:54 am (UTC)
alvo: (by the sea)
From: [personal profile] alvo
"A week, then." That ought to work. It shouldn't be long enough for them to have to resort to violence against one another, although he only gives them a day or two before they start thinking about it. But that's why Mallorca is such a beautiful distraction. Girls. Wine. Water. Beach. Sun. Drugs for the taking. "A week to play. Make sure your passports are in order."

That's enough on that. Bax is right; they have the matter of tonight at hand and now it's his turn to talk about himself. Over the years, it's something he's been reticent to do. Even more so since he moved to Spain, in part because he's certain nobody really wants to hear what he has to say, in part because there are things he shouldn't tell anybody. That's his business, of course, and that's what Bax is getting at, isn't it.

His business. "While I'm here? So much fun. Banking, for the most part, and a bit of business with my solicitor." He lifts his glass, drains it, sets it down. "And see you sorry excuses for friends, of course. But that's it, nothing very romantic, nothing of the sort."

Date: 2012-04-03 03:19 am (UTC)
smilebigboy: (Default)
From: [personal profile] smilebigboy
"Sounds amazing." Woody's voice is drier than the Sahara as he leans back in his chair and continues to play with his empty glass, lopsided grin playing around his lips. Really, they can't get away from the fact that they've all turned into a bunch of old farts somehow, content to sit and bitch over a beer about visiting each other. And Alvo, who he'd always half-wondered would be the one to never grow up, coming over from the life he'd carved out to bank? It's all ridiculous.

"Bax's right, though. Ought to do something." He casts his mind briefly around and can't particularly think of anything but that can be for the others. He's not exactly known for being the ideas-man anyway. "Unless you're really excited for a wild night of banking."

He'll go along with whatever they decide, he figures. Sometimes it feels like he never came to much harm following the boys -- it was just when he went off on his own, that was when the problems came up. That's all in the past, now. Youth and youth's mistakes are gone (still close enough for him to feel the ache sometimes but he ignores that) and he's about as responsible as the rest, now.

Well.

Getting there.

Date: 2012-04-05 04:14 pm (UTC)
imholdingcereal: (Speak ruddy english)
From: [personal profile] imholdingcereal
"Oi!" he was sure that haircut comment was aimed at him and frankly, he didn't approve. His hair was wonderfully short and even, you could bloody well measure the length and find it was perfect. But sadly they were a bunch of blokes in their forties and while some, like Quinn, accept this and spend their evenings watching 'Come dine with me', listening to out-dated rock and failed pathetically to connect to the youth of today.

Then there was these lots, desperately clinging to their youth in an attempt to prove themselves still who they were. Quinn rolled his eyes at the very idea. A night of drinking, pretending they fit in and the girls they were hitting on weren't young enough to be their children and then spending the next few days in bed with a hang over. Fantastic.

Frankly Quinn would rather go to a retirement home for the weekend and hang out with the old dearies.

"If we're doing something we have to mutually agree it won't be a bloody nightclub, a 'trendy' bar or watching one another embarrassingly fail at picking up a women," And yes, he was looking at Baxter for that one but he couldn't help it. He didn't like this fight for youth, he would happily accept watching the footie, perhaps partaking in some wine or other low energy activities.

Well... one could hope?

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Baxter

March 2012

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