AND YOU WILL

Ask the neighbour round for a barbeque seeing as her husband is away on an oilrig again. And you will all sit in the sun eating pig and sweetcorn and chicken. And your kids are much older than her kids but they’ll still play together. And you and Grace and the neighbour will drink a box of Liebfraumilch before five. And then you’ll bomb down to the offy for another, and a twelve-pack to boot. And when you get back you and Grace will have a little set-to about the twelve-pack and the credit card bill. And you will say Oh c’mon, and Chill the fuck out will you? And the neighbour will say Back in a mo. And when she climbs back over the wall you’ll see her pink knicker gusset as her leg swings over. And then you will feel a tightening in your cock. And she will say Look! I brought tarot cards! And then she will tell Grace’s fortune. And you won’t pay any attention and go paddling with the kids in an inflatable pool decorated with Simba and Pumbaa and Timon. And the neighbour will smile at you because you make her kids laugh. And by nine all three of you will be pretty pissed but only two of you will be smiling. And as the sun drops behind the rooftops the neighbour will take her kids for a bath and bed, and then Grace will usher Scarlett and Joe inside likewise saying No no no, it’s school tomorrow. And you will carry on into the twelve-pack. And Grace will call Turn it down please from the bathroom window. And under your breath you will tell her to Go fuck herself as you turn Definitely Maybe down one-half of a notch. And when you sit back down on the still-warm plastic garden chair and put your bare feet on the table the neighbour will be smiling from her kids’ bedroom window. And you will wave and blow her a kiss. And you will see her laugh through the glass but she won’t blow you a kiss back. And by half-ten Grace and the neighbour will be back outside with you. And then you will throw wood onto the barbie. And then Grace will complain about the smoke. And you will ignore her, and continue to play accidental footsie under the table with the neighbour. And by eleven, Grace will say she’s off to bed because she’s up at six. And you will just say Bye and not persuade her otherwise. And when the backdoor closes the neighbour will say Your turn now and shuffle the tarot cards with slender fingers. And now she will say This is you, waving the Knight Of Wands in front of your face. And you will say Why? And she will say, A man below forty born under the sign of Aries. And now you will say How do you know I’m Aries the Ram? emphasising as you will, the Ram. And she will smile and say Oh, you’d be surprised what I know, and you will feel another tightening in your cock. And then she will say This is what covers you, placing down The Hierophant. And then she will say Weakness, and you will say Bollocks, and she will laugh and you will too, all the time still playing accidental footsie under the table. And now she will say This is what crosses you, placing the Nine Of Swords upside-down on your Knight Of Wands. And she will smile and you will say What? and then she will say Imprisonment, ha ha. And now you will both drink, and then refill your glasses with Liebfraumilch, putting Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours on the CD player because she likes that one, and yes, you will both sing the hook-line to Second Hand News, then look at each other for longer than is usual for people who aren’t shagging. And then she will say This is what crowns you, putting the Five Of Wands above your Knight Of Wands saying Struggle. And you will laugh at this saying Too fucking right. And now she will say This is beneath you as she places The Fool on the table causing you both to laugh long and loud until she pats your hand saying, A lack of understanding, Billy. And now you will light a fag, drink, hooking your ankles around her bare heels. And now there will be a silence bar Fleetwood Mac as you watch the colour rise soft in her cheeks before she sits upright moving her feet away. And then she will say This is behind you, dropping the Page Of Pentacles upside-down on the table saying Cursed by a bad omen. And you will place one leg by hers until your skin touches saying Well, this is going really well isn’t it? which will make her laugh again as you top both your drinks up. And then she will drink and so will you. And now she will say This is in front of you, putting down the Six Of Swords saying, A voyage. And you will say Where are you taking me, Alice? And she will blush softly again but look into your eyes all the same saying, It’s more where you’re taking yourself, Billy. And you will say Oh. And then she will say This is you, and place Judgement onto the table, saying Consequences for past deeds, and you will say Great, I’m fucked then, and she will smile but not look at you. And now she will say This is your home, putting an upside-down Ten Of Cups onto the table, laughing, and you saying What? and her saying Quarrels, Funny, you will say. And then she will say This is your hope, placing the burning Sun in front of you both saying Well, happiness, and you saying But I am happy, stroking your toe down her bare leg. And now she will smile, saying And this is your future, and The Devil will have both a man and a woman naked and chained to his cloven-hoofed legs, his black eyes staring out at you from the tarot card, and you will say Oh, I was hoping for The Lovers, and then, Want to play something else?