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Chapter six Who`s The Daddy
Turns out that Billy`s new friend “Ramish Patel” lived with his brothers and sisters in the nearby off licence which his grandad used regularly, to regularly according to mum!! The only reason he didn’t see him on the bus was because his dad had given him a lift on his first day in the car. “How embarrassing is that?? Explained Ramish to Billy, “not am I the only black kid in the school, I turn up with my dad on my first day who was wearing a red turban at the time!! Billy rolled on the grass in the park laughing, he knew then they were going to get on great. Billy`s grandad always said never look at the colour, just the person underneath. Billy didn’t see colour anyway, just heard a very black kid with a strong local accent, so funny! Over the coming months they were stuck together like glue and never stopped getting tired of people looking at them like the odd couple.
Every night after their meal Ramish would ask Billy what he eaten for his tea and Billy would say fish or stew, and sometimes when he asked Ramish what he had eaten he would say “I’ve had an English! “Egg and chips!” Their
families grew quite close and Billy`s mum and Mrs Patel became very good friends. Billy`s dad was still a bit old fashioned but at least mum was working on him. One day as they were walking through town a bunch of skinheads stopped them from walking past and asked “what`s going on here then? “Would that be in general??Asked Billy? Well, Billy carried on saying, “first of all there was Adam and Eve and they had two sons, one called Cain POW! That was about as far as he got before the first punch floored him!! Looking round quickly to find his bearings he jumped to his feet just as the skinheads were beating Ramish against the wall. As he ran towards them with fists ready for the fray someone beat him to it. It was grandad!!! He lifted two of the skinheads off their feet and threw them to the ground, another one ran towards him but he ducked out of the way, tripped him and watched him fly through the air with a helpless look on his face. By this time a crowd had gathered and order was restored with the skinheads running away and threatening all as they ran. Now Billy, I thought I’d taught you better than that? Always stand side on when confronted, harder to hit see?? Guess what? Billy never did forget that move. Billy very rarely lost his temper but only did so when confronted with stupid people talking “ Drivel “ as he called it, which means “Rubbish “ He was at the flicks ( cinema) one night and during the interval he and Ramish had gone to the
foyer for some popcorn. He heard one of the local lads taking the Mickey and saying to his mates, “Why does Gillam always hang round with that coloured lad? Aren’t white people good enough for him? Billy was just about to turn on him when the hand of Ramish pushed him back and he heard him say to Billy,” I`ll handle this. “Listen my friend, when I was born I was black, when I grow up, I will be black and when I die I will be black, on the other hand, when you were born you were pink, when you grow up you will be white, when you are ill you are green, when you burn in the sun you are red and when you die you will be grey!! And, you have the cheek to call me coloured! Well, the crowd in the foyer erupted in laughter and then started to applaud, Billy got hold of Ramish`s head and made him take a bow along with himself.”Thank you one and all shouted Billy, me and my brother are here all week. This caused yet more laughter and Billy and Ramish walked out with their heads held high. Unfortunately, it wasn’t until later they realised they had missed the second picture!! But it didn’t matter, that was the best night in ages!!
One night as Billy had just sat down to his tea, there was a knock at the door, Billy knew that knock and so did his mum. She turned round and looked at him with that “What Now? Look on her face. Billy shrugged his shoulders and shook his
head from side to side.” Not me this time” he protested. He was right, as his mum opened the door there stood PC Wilkins, he knew Billy very well but it was mum he wanted this time. They went into the parlour (front room) and emerged about twenty minutes later.
Billy knew there was something wrong as soon as he looked at mums face; she had that withdrawn look on her face just like she had when gran died, OH GOD NO! Thought Billy. His brothers were asleep upstairs, his dad in the pub as usual and his sister doing whatever girls do. “Billy, his mum blurted out, it’s your grandad, he`s in hospital and not to good at all. These were the words Billy had always dreaded hearing, his heart sank and it seemed as if time itself had stood still. “He was walking through town his mum said, when for no apparent reason was attacked by three skinheads. Billy`s heart sank even further, so, the threats from the skinheads that Grandad had humiliated had come true and they had taken their revenge. Billy felt the rage well up inside him and he thought he was going to explode, it was now time to step up to the mark and be a man he thought. But not a word to mum!!
Chapter Seven Stranger things happen at sea
Billy hated hospitals. It wasn’t just the smell or the sight of people still smoking in their sick beds as if there were nothing wrong with them, there was talk of banning smoking in hospitals but could you imagine all the patients stood outside in their pyjama`s fagging it! How stupid would they look! Will never happen he thought, but the last time he was here was to see his Grandma and that was the last time he did. Now here was here to visit his beloved Grandad. As Billy walked into G2 ward he was the first to see him, he raced over and to his surprise Grandad was sat up and chatting to the guy in the next bed. GRANDAD!! He shouted and jumped onto the bottom of the bed. “It’s a good job they didn’t break my legs eh?? he said to Billy as he grabbed him and gave him a big hug. By the time mum had caught up they had already agreed not to mention the earlier meeting with the skinheads. “I suppose you were drunk and thinking you were 21 again eh? Asked mum, something like that said grandad and winked at Billy. Billy smiled but underneath something was brewing. The following day was a Saturday so as usual Billy helped mum with the shopping while Dad had a lie in. Why he still had a lie in on a Saturday and Sunday puzzled Billy as he wasn’t working anymore, must have more to drink on a Friday and Saturday night down the club smirked Billy, but I wish he didn’t drink so much he thought.
Shopping done it was time to call round for Ramish. As normal he just walked straight into the shop, round the counter and into the back where Ramish was either having his dinner or saying his prayers! This time it was prayer time so Billy stood silent and rigid out of respect until they had all finished. Hello Billy! Shouted Ramish’s mum, how are you and how’s your grandad? All fine and dandy he replied, “Can I ask you something Mrs Patel? Of course Billy, anything, you’re like family now. “Why do you all take your shoes off before you enter into your Mosque? Is it because it’s Holy ground? Mrs Patel laughed, “That’s what all the westerners think, don’t tell anybody, but the real reason is so we don’t dirty the new carpet!! Billy collapsed on the settee with laughter, Ramish looked as embarrassed as ever, and they both made their way out to the town centre. This was going to be a day to remember one way or the other. Billy kept thinking about his grandad lying in the hospital ward, feeling guilty as if it was his fault his grandad was there. As they turned down the main square, there stood the three skinheads in all their vile glory outside the Wimpey bar. Ramish looked at Billy with a pleading look of “don’t do it” but it was too late, Billy was on a mission. Just round the corner was a bank with the big door and grand entrance. Billy hid behind one of the corners and shouted “Hey you skinheads over there, what’s it like to have no hair? Is it hot or is it cold, tell me now if you are so bold!! Well, it certainly had the desired effect! The biggest of the skinheads came
rushing round the corner just as Billy bent down right in front of him. He flew through the air and landed heavily in a crumpled heap at the foot of Ramish who helped him sleep for a little while with the aid of a small brick he had picked up along the way. The second two followed shortly after, and as they rounded the corner Billy was stood over the crumpled heap of the flattened skinhead, with his foot on his back and his arms waving in the air like Cassius Clay! This infuriated the other two skinheads and they made a grab for Billy but he was too quick. He ducked out of the way and stood side on to them both waiting for the next attack. What he didn’t see was a fourth skinhead crawl up behind him and hit him so hard he saw stars!! Ramish dived at the fourth skinhead but was far too small for him and was brushed aside with ease and thrown to one side, banging his head along the way. Just before Billy regained his full faculties he was hit again and fell to the floor. It was only the thought of his grandad which kept him conscious, and as he struggled to his feet for the last time a bright red Tungsten Dr Martin Boot headed his way. Billy closed his eyes and waited for the impact to the side of his head but it never came!! Instead he heard a loud scream as one of the skinheads crashed to the floor and the other two were beaten in a flurry of punches and kicks so fast, Billy thought he was watching a Bruce Lee film!! With every punch and kick he heard his saviour saying” Pick on a small guy
would you? Racist are you? Until eventually they screamed “enough enough” and were left to run home to mummy! Billy recognised the voice, it sounded older than he had remembered it but it wasn’t until “Bruce Lee “turned round did Billy realise who it was. “ As I live and breathe “Ste Robson!! You took your time didn’t you?? “Still as cheeky as ever I see, replied Ste, good to know something’s don’t change!! “Where did you come from? Billy asked. “Just pure luck” said Ste, I was just collecting my little sister form the Saturday morning pictures when I though heard your Dulcet tones and though I would say hi, didn’t know I was walking into world war three!!. “Where the hell did you learn all that Kung Foo stuff? “Well, said Ste, “I got so fed up with a little chap always being too quick for me I thought I had better do something about it! They both laughed and turned to where Ramish was. He was just coming round as Billy helped him to his feet. What happened? He asked, and who are you? Pointing at Ste Robson. Nothing much replied Billy; they must have got scared and run off, eh Ste? “Seems that way, said Ste, knowing a debt had been paid at last.
Chapter Eight Growing up?
Over the next couple of years Ramish had drilled it into Billy that to get anywhere in life you had to have a good education. The looks on the teachers faces when Billy started
to sit at the front of the class!! “What are you up to Gillam??They would ask, “Nothing sir, honest, he would reply but with that cheeky look and smile that God blessed him with they never believed him! At the age of fourteen he had come bottom of the class in the yearly exams, his mother cried, his dad pasted him (as usual) but it was his grandad’s reaction that hurt him most. The look of disappointment in his grandad`s eyes were too much to bear and he swore to himself he would never see that again. He had let down the only person that had faith in him and who loved him unconditionally and that wasn’t going to happen again!! Eventually Billy became quite the model student but his escapades still carried on out of school hours. He couldn’t help his quick wit now could he?? And his outlook on life would never change as he yearned to work in the countryside where he had spent so many hours, sat, alone, planning his future watching the wildlife roam free. This is what he yearned, so hard work and studying was the thing to do and he did it quite well.
Just as he turned sixteen there was a Xmas school dance and Billy had decided to go for the first time. He had never attended one before all the years he was there, couldn’t quite remember why but there you go. About an hour into it he was ready to go home and headed towards the door when this angelic looking girl came in and walked straight into
him!! “Err sorry Billy stammered, “That’s ok, came the reply, Oh! It’s you “Mute “Billy couldn’t believe his eyes and wasn’t quite sure what was happening to his heart either!! There stood the most beautiful girl in the world who had grown up into a picture of beauty, gone was the buck teeth, gone was the scowling face, but the piercing voice still remained!! Well, “two out of three isn’t bad” he thought, hey! That would make a good song title he thought, but soon forgot about that as he walked her onto the dance floor, arm in arm with his new found love and he didn’t care what people thought. Wait till grandad hears about this! He thought, and danced the night away. Were his boyish years behind him? Was he about to give up his cheeky ways and act his age for a change? What do you think?
BILLY GROWS UP
Chapter Nine Billy, I`m pregnant!!! Just for one minute the whole world stopped still. Billy stood there statue like and bolted to the spot! He went dizzy and thought he was going to faint.
It had been four years since he had met the love of his life Mary and up to now it had been uncomplicated, just the way Billy liked it. He had also got his dream job of working as a Mountain Ranger and passed his driving test first time!! They had decided to move in together last year after Billy`s mum had passed away and his Dad took to drinking even more and was on a downward spiral of self destruction. Billy saw his dad at weekends and always on his own and early in the morning before the days drink got hold of Dad.
“What do you mean pregnant? Billy asked in a very feeble voice that would have made a mouse embarrassed. Don`t get too excited pleaded Mary, if you are not sure what I mean I can always sit you down and explain about the birds and the bee`s if you like !! She always did have a cutting sense of humour, that and her attitude to life was the things Billy loved about her, but a baby?? I mean, how did that happen? Not the most intelligent question and as soon as the sentence left his lips he knew it!! As Mary started to laugh Billy approached Mary, took her in his arms, kissed her gently and said “What the hell am i going to tell Grandad”??? Err; don’t you think we should talk about it first before we go blabbing to everybody else? Mmm, of course you’re right as usual and with that Billy made a phone call to the Head
Ranger explaining he would be a little late with Mary shouting in the background “ He`s not the only one!!
After what had seemed hours Billy and Mary had talked about, where, when and what the future held for them both. They both loved each other deeply, of that there was no doubt, but now decisions had to be made, the baby was due in September, it was now April and of course the right thing to do would be to get married, but, and this was a big but!! Billy had not come from the happiest of families and didn’t want to end up like his dad. I wish grandad was here!!!
Billy decided to take the rest of the day off and spend it with Mary but the question of marriage seemed to be just touched on without actually being spoken about!! Eventually Billy brought the subject up, well, in a roundabout way that is. Mary? He asked, “Do you think baby bump (as they had now nicknamed he or she) would appreciate it if we were married? Well! Billy Reginald Gillam, are you asking me to marry you dear Sir?? Asked Mary with a wry smile on her face? Reginald!!! Billy hated that second name and Mary knew it! Err, I suppose I am really, but it will be the last time I do if you ever call me Reginald again!! Well you old romantic giggled Mary, took Billy`s hand and said “Yes, of course I will”
With that they shared a tender kiss and Billy said “I love you Mary Kearsley, “I love you to Reggie, Mary laughed, Billy just shook his head and said “ And to think I have a lifetime of this to look forward to!!
The next few days were just a blur and while Billy was dying to tell the world about his news but he had made a promise to Mary that not a word of it would be spoken until three months of Mary`s pregnancy had passed. Very superstitious us northerners Billy thought. As Billy sat at the wheel of his Land rover looking over the Bolton Moorland he pondered about his future and what it meant. Did this mean the end of his boyish ways? His prank`s? His zest for life and all that may be thrown at him? NOT ONE BIT!!!! His Grandad had taught him well, and he always said “You don`t stop smiling when you get old, you get old because you stop smiling!! A sudden feeling of dread came over him, Grandad, he thought, how was he going to take this news, he hadn’t been that well lately and this was big news. They were going to see him next Sunday, so Billy had to put his thinking cap on about this one!!
Chapter Ten Everybody Knows!!
Billy couldn’t believe how quickly Sunday had arrived and as he woke to the smell of eggs and bacon (A rare Sunday treat) he thought about what to say to his Grandad. Actually he had thought of nothing else all week and nothing seemed to sound right. He made his way downstairs after getting washed and ready and sat down at the kitchen table. “Food for thought” said Mary as she placed a very good looking plate of food in front of him.” Don`t even think about not eating it! Or you will be wearing it, laughed Mary. Billy did as he was told, ate every bit and washed it all down with a strong cup of tea, by the time he had done this Mary was all dressed and ready to go. Come on then, let`s get it over with. They didn’t talk much on the way to Grandads until they reached the corner of the street where he lived, “Well? Said Mary, “What are you going to tell him then? Billy was ashen white and Mary thought he was going to pass out with fear, good God Billy, it`s your Grandad not your priest you’re going to see! Made no difference, he still couldn’t stop shaking and Mary knew she had to think on her feet quickly with this one. Just as they approached Grandads door she slipped her foot in front of Billy`s and he went tumbling to the ground with a hefty crash and as he did so she rang Grandads bell. By the time Billy had got to his feet Grandad was at the door laughing at him and saying it was nice of him to
drop in!! If looks could kill thought Mary, I wouldn’t be here now, but it was worth it and they both followed Grandad into his house and sat in the usual seats. Grandad`s chair was an electric recliner which he was very proud of and Billy was sure he slept in that most of the time, but, if that`s what made him happy, what the hec!
After the usual banter of what kind of week have you had and Grandad telling Mary yet another story about Billy when he was younger, Billy cleared his throat and said, “Grandad? He didn’t get the chance to utter another word because Grandad stood up, looked at them both and said “When’s the baby due then? The silence was eerie.
Billy sat there with his mouth so wide open you could have driven a bus down it and Mary bowed her head and hid her face as it was as red as the cushions she was sat on. “But but but, stammered Billy, “Be quiet Billy, said Grandad, you sound like a 50cc moped, Mary? When are you due? “September she said very quietly, but but but? If you say that one more time Billy I swear I will throw you out said Grandad. Then he looked at Mary and said “September eh? Can I ask you just one thing? “Of course said Mary, Grandad asked in a serious tone, are you sure it`s yours? As Mary looked up as puzzled as she had ever been, Grandad stood there with a great big grin on his face with his arms outstretched to her.
Billy started to laugh, Just then they all Joined in, and before you knew it the tension had gone, the moment had passed and they all stood there and hugged each other. “I am so proud of you both, you will make great parents. This was all Billy needed to hear; Grandad had been and always will be the most important person in his life, if he had been disappointed he didn’t know what he would have done, the feeling of relief was immense and it certainly showed. “How did you know? Said Billy, “I`m your Grandad, “It`s my job to know, he replied with a wink and a nod, besides, with red rosy cheeks, a twinkle in Mary`s eye, oh, and those fatty ankles, how could I be wrong? “Your Grandma taught me well, he laughed. Grandad didn’t talk about Grandma that often so he knew today was an important day. This is a cause for celebration he said, an went to the drinks cabinet and got three glasses out along with a bottle of Brandy ( His medicine he called it) They all toasted the baby`s health, well Billy and Grandad did, Mary didn’t drink so she had a glass of Coke. “Had a visitor last night” said Grandad, Mrs Williams from number eighty two, brought me a hot plate of pie and chips, sat her bum down and never moved until nearly midnight, then she said as it was so late she might as well stay the night !!! Randy old Mare!!! Billy choked and coughed on his Brandy!! Mary was laughing so hard she thought she was going to pass out!! “I had to tell
her straight, said Grandad, the days of me sleeping with another woman are long gone, Elsie (Billy`s Grandma) was enough for me, could you imagine me having to put up with all that again??? My heart couldn’t stand it!! He laughed, but Billy knew his Grandad, and deep down he still missed Gran but would never admit it. “Just one word of advice Billy, he said, always remember, Mary, your wife to be, will always listen to you, think about what you have said, toss it round in her head, and then, do as exactly as she wants!!!!! This is the way of the woman, remember that and you won`t go far wrong. They all laughed and Mary knew already this was certainly true. She looked at Grandad and said “Is it yours, what a question that was!! Yea I know, but it broke the ice didn’t it? Better than breaking your ankle said Billy! Then he pulled his tongue out at Mary.
On the way home they decided to stop at Billy`s best friends Ramish`s house and tell them the good news. They were greeted with the usual handshakes, kisses and a generous offer of food. “What did you have for your dinner? Asked Ramish, this was a game they had played since they had been kids,” I had a sandwich at Grandads, egg and cress, home grown of course, “ what did you have? I had an English replied Ramish, English? Enquired Mary, yes said Ramish, Fish and Chips!!! Mary just shook her head; she should have known better than to ask, when these two were together,
especially at school they caused havoc as well as a lot of raised eyebrows. Billy got some serious abuse about having an Indian lad as a best friend but they played together, fought together and cried together, thankfully things had got a little better since them days. Billy and Ramish were very close and apart from their skin colour they were like brothers, so it was only natural Billy asked Ramish to be best man at the upcoming wedding, he had asked his grandad first but Grandad had politely refused on Age grounds and told him to ask Ramish. “We are in trouble now! Said Mary! Billy, Ramish and the entire family under one roof?? It`s got disaster written all over it. Little did she know how right she would be!!!
Chapter Eleven Not Long Now
The first couple of months flew by and all seemed to be going well until one day the phone rang; it was Auntie Pat from County Clare in Ireland!! Now, Auntie Pat was Grandads older sister and the real head of the family. Every time there was a birth, death or marriage it was Auntie Pat who sorted the guest list out regarding who came from Ireland to the event and who didn’t. “Hello there Billy” came the thick Irish accent over the phone,” and how the devil are you? I believe you are finally settling down and getting married? When`s the happy day then?
She doesn’t know Mary`s pregnant! Billy thought, “She can`t do or that would have been the first thing that came out of her mouth. “Hello Auntie Pat” Billy answered, it`s so good to hear from you, we haven’t actually set a date as yet but as soon as we do you will be the first to know.” Nothing wrong is there Billy? Pat asked,” no” replied Billy, nothing at all, just haven’t really got round to it yet, been very busy at work and so on. “Still no rush eh?? Said Pat, It`s a big commitment you know. I know Auntie Pat, I know, and with that they chatted for about another half hour, mostly about Mary and her Catholic upbringing and Billy`s hopes for the future. Billy put the phone down and went straight round to Grandad`s!!! What do you mean you haven’t told Auntie Pat??Boomed grandad!! God preserve us!! If she turns up at the wedding and doesn’t know about Baby Bump she will cast every demon known to Lucifer in our direction!! Billy started to laugh, his grandad was so funny when he was frustrated and came out with the strangest sayings. “It`s not funny Billy” he screamed, you don’t know what she`s like!! “I once annoyed her so much when we were children she chased me round the yard with a shovel and I had to hide in the coal bunker until she had calmed down!! By the time I crawled out I was a black as your best friend Ramish!! By this time Billy had collapsed in a hopeless heap on the settee. Grandad just shook his head and put the kettle on knowing he would lose any kind of battle with Billy as well,
and it would be up to him to tell his sister Pat about the baby, “hope she still doesn’t own a shovel” he thought and smiled to himself. The date of the wedding was set for August the 17th and the doctors said the baby was due on the 17th of September, more importantly, Auntie Pat now knew and after pretending to faint over the phone (which frightened Grandad half to death!!) all was now set for a great day. Ramish was doing a great job as best man and had organised the Stag Night to run as smoothly as it should do, but then again it was a stag night after all!!!
Before he knew it was the week before the wedding and Billy was getting ready for his last night of freedom. Mary had said all there was to say about his behaviour but at the same time trusted him enough to know that getting drunk was his one and only vice. Just as Billy was stepping through the door Mary shouted him back, “ I have something for you” she said and produced a Gold St Christopher from a box she had in her hand, “ I was going to give you this after the wedding but considering its you, Ramish and all your workmates that`s going on this Stag Night I figured you might need this sooner rather than later!! Billy`s eyes filled up and he whispered gently “I love you Mary” as she slipped it round his neck.” I love you too said Mary, now go on with you and have a great time, just make sure you are
home before the wedding next week!! Enjoy your night in with the girls shouted Billy as he walked through the door and out into the night. His local pub was called “The Craven Heifer” and this is where they had all decided to meet up.” Suppose nobody comes??Panicked Billy, suppose I have got the wrong day? Won’t be the first time! But he needn’t have worried, as he walked in the pub started to applause and he was patted on the back all the way to the bar. There must have been thirty people there, and stood right at the front of the queue for drinks was Ramish, wearing a jet black suit, black shirt and with his hair dyed BLONDE!!!! “What The?????, just at the last minute Billy heard Mary`s words ring in his ears about behaving himself!! Ramish, what have you done to your hair? Well, explained Ramish, knowing what your favourite drink is, I thought just for you I would wear all black, dye my hair blonde and come as a pint of Guinness!!!! The Pub erupted with laughter and Billy knew now how Ramish had won over so many friends, him being his best one, you’re as mad as a Biscuit!!! Said Billy, Good God man! If Mary could see you now she would have the baby tonight!! Be careful what you wish for Billy boy, said Ramish and placed a real pint of Guinness in his hand, “Cheers everybody!! Billy shouted. The party had just started!!
Billy`s local The Craven Heifer held some good memories for him because as a young adult it was the first pub he had been in, the first pub that had accepted Ramish for who he was and the first pub he and Mary had been in together. As a child it was mum and dad`s local and dad had worked behind the bar and waited on for many years. It was also the cause of many a drunken violent argument between his mum and dad but Billy had decided to prove to that wouldn’t be the case with him and by using it himself as a local was the only way of doing that. Plus, it was the best pint of Guinness this side of the Irish Sea!! It was going to be such a good night he thought.
Eight pints later and six pubs down the road (He had two in the Bridge Inn as he knew the Landlord) they arrived on the edge of town where the biggest night club in Bolton was “The Palais De Dance” Queuing up outside Billy thought about next week. “Time to grow up Billy Boy” Ramish had said to him when they told him the date of the wedding, then added, but not too much eh?? Mary had always been the girl for him and when she turned him down to go out the first time he asked her, he worked all his boyish charms until she eventually said yes. Not that had needed too Mary had told him later but it was fun anyway!
As he entered the dance hall after paying his entrance fee it never ceased to amaze him how large and bright it was inside. It was also the only dance floor in the north west of England that had a spring floor!! Now that was something to be proud of! He turned round to make sure they had all got in ok ( bouncers can be a funny bunch at times) and after making sure all were accounted for he headed towards the bar. Twenty two whiskies, seven Brandies and one Babysham please, he asked the barmaid whose mouth dropped wide open as if he had asked HER to marry him! The babysham was for Terry, nobody ever questioned him as to why, but it was well known at work that he batted for the other side but that didn’t bother Billy “ Each to his own he thought!” once served they headed for the dance floor. The dance floor was heaving and bouncing along with the music. Billy was very confident about his relationship with Mary and knew a dance with a young lady would be ok. As he approached a group of women it wasn’t till he got closer that he noticed they were a bit older than him, probably in their thirties. This didn’t bother Billy as a dance was a dance however old they were. He tapped one of them on the shoulder and said” Excuse me, would you like to dance? “No thank you she said, I don’t dance with kids” Oh? I am sorry; i didn’t know you were pregnant! Billy replied, winked at the others, and walked away, pride intact!! One for the boys he thought!! and decided to join his mates at the table.
“You never said that to her did you? laughed Ramish. Do you know who that is? Yes, said Billy, a very posh stuck up girl who wouldn’t know a polite invitation if it came up and bit her on the bum!! No, said Ramish, its Mick Townsends sister from the estate, we are in for it now!! Just as the last words left his mouth, who should turn the corner but the man himself, along with about twenty of his buddies. Mick Townsend wasn’t the biggest of guys but was known for his fighting and very rarely lost. He and his friends surrounded Billy`s table and demanded to know who had insulted his sister. “That would be me” said Billy standing up, but it wasn’t meant as an insult, just a bit of fun. Townsend stood in front of Billy, looked him up and down slowly and then returned his gaze to Billy`s face. Billy never flinched or moved a muscle and stared straight back (something Grandad had taught him) this unnerved Mick Townsend a little who said quietly “Cheeky little buggger aren’t we? I do what I can, said Billy never taking his eyes off Townsend. Where do we go from here then? “Straight outside the door” a voice shouted from behind and two very large hands grabbed hold of Townsend by the scruff of the neck and started to march him towards the door. Billy just saw the back of the bouncer and watched him kick Mick and all his mates out through the door.
Phew!! That was close said Ramish, “Who was that masked man? He joked. Just then the bouncer turned round and it was none other than Ste Robson, his old enemy from school, but they had become great friends eventually. As he approached Billy, Ste smiled and said “we can’t keep on meeting like this you know!! Thanks for the invite, how’s Mary these days? “She`s just fine thanks Ste, replied Billy, “as big as a house but just fine, I will tell her you have been asking. “ make sure you do and try to stay out of trouble for the rest of the night, as if I’m not busy enough!! “ Will do” said Billy and went on to enjoy the rest of the night without incident. Flopping down next to Mary in bed later that night, fully clothed, he slept more contented than ever.
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