Friday, July 06, 2018

Blind Item #14 - Elegant Degradation – A Himmmm Blind Item Story – Part 7

5PM - THE SAFARI INN MOTEL – BURBANK, CA

Gillian and I were considering trying convenient places to put ice cubes when we'd run out of ice for drinks.  Duke and Jess were digging through music choices; and the other crazy kids were next door, so Gillian volunteered for the "ice machine run".  As she left, two guys walked in that I'd never seen in my life.  I'm sure I would remember if I had; as one was the size of a house and the other the size of a truck.  In fact, let's call them Mr. House and Mr. Truck.  They were not there to jump out of any birthday cakes either.  They were looking for Doc, and by the anger on their faces – it was not to discuss a new movie.

I introduced myself, and suggested we talk in private – with Duke at my side.  The two big guys explained to me that they were "associates" of Doc's (and we all knew what that meant).  Doc had stopped by their apartment earlier, and left without saying goodbye.  Or paying.  Apparently Doc already owed them several thousand dollars and he'd departed with a quantity of white powder…and no permission to take it.  I sobered up rapidly, and understood totally.  I told the men I was willing to cover what I was sure was an "oversight" on my idiot friend's behalf.  They said that would be fine; but they were still going to be waiting for Doc's return…just to clear this up in person. They weren't asking.

Around that time Gillian returned with the ice, and I told her that she needed to leave.  She could see by my face, and the two giant men, that I was serious.  Duke nodded.  Jess and Sara and the others partying by the pool needed to go too.  The party was over.  Gillian declared she was staying.  I told her I would call her later, and please leave now.  I was rude about it.  Truth was? I had no idea what this would turn into, if anything.  I hoped nothing.  But in a situation like this – it is always best to cut down on the number of people around who may either get hurt or arrested.  Judging by the looks of these twin towers – they were not looking to arrest Doc.

Jess was staying put, but Sara drove Gillian home.  She wasn't too happy about leaving – but I hoped for the chance to explain it all and make it up to her later.  Soon thereafter, Duke and I saw Ben and Doc return to the parking lot.  Without anyone else.  When the door to the room opened, Doc walked in and saw the five of us in there waiting.  He was pretty close to wasted, but Ben was stone-cold sober and white as a sheet.  Ben said he had to talk to me, but we were all a bit busy.  Now that we were all on the same page, I told Doc I would pay what he owed.  A tense discussion began, and Ben kept trying to get my attention.  I was more concerned with keeping everyone cool and calm, which was hard when Doc was yapping a mile a minute.

I shouldn't have bothered even worrying.

As the "discussion" grew more heated, I finally asked everyone to stop.  I looked at Jess, and she and I both agreed that we'd go with Mr. Mountain to get them the money.  Mr. Truck could stay in the room with Duke, Doc, and Ben.  Everyone seemed in agreement, and we opened up the door to leave.  Out on the walkway deck, we saw three more large men walking.  Our way.  I didn't know them or what they wanted but they too did not look happy to be there.  This was not what I had in mind for a party.

Blocking the way between the walkway and the steps, one of the three no-neck men asked if we were with "Doc's party".  (A question I was getting sick of answering).  Jess and I looked at each other – then at Mr. Mountain, who shrugged.  I nervously told them "yes", half expecting to see cuffs or hear shots.  The three men smiled, and – oddly – introduced themselves.  All three had Eastern European names and accents.  They invited us to return to the room we'd just left.

When the door opened, and we walked in with our new guests…the shock and confusion on Duke's face said it all.  One of the new arrivals closed the door behind us.  Almost on cue, Doc smiled and began counting heads: "One, two, three…ten. Sorry guys, I think we're only allowed five per room so some of you are going to need to leave."  He laughed like it was the funniest thing he'd ever heard.  Since he was higher than a giraffe's ass by then, it probably was.

One of the Europeans said, "If we throw you off this balcony a few times – will numbers be okay then?".  Doc abruptly stopped laughing.  I introduced myself to the United Nations Delegates, and said: "Let me guess…", nodding to Doc. "More friends of his?".

They nodded their heads up and down, silently.

Doc shrugged like "Who me?".  Jess rolled her eyes so hard I thought she had a seizure;  Duke said "shit"…and poor Ben wilted.  Duke – no longer the largest man in my presence, sat down softly beside of Jess on the bed.  The five BIG men – aka the Rams Offensive Line – stood closest to the door.

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