I’ve been shooting up in Stix’s house in Elanora Heights for the last couple of hours. Me, Stix, crusty-lips and close-eyes are in the lounge. I managed to get a seat to myself on the red leather armchair. It’s a better buzz here on this chair. I hate their bodies touching mine when I’m squashed between them on the sofa.
My sunburnt skin’s looking even worse than it did earlier. Stix’s mum gave me aloe vera gel when we got here. I pick up the bottle from the side of my chair and apply another coat to my face, arms, legs and chest. I’ll have to do my stomach and my thighs when I get back to the hotel.
I’m sure I’ll have missed Lorna now. She won’t be pissed off with me, because she’ll take my share of the heroin. I won’t be pissed off with her, because that’s what I expect. It’s annoying that I’ll have paid twice though. I’ve given Stix a couple of hundred so I’ve got my own stash. I prefer making up my own hits here, and I also wanted to have some to take back to my hotel later.
Crusty-lips passes me a joint. I really need to find out his name and the name of close-eyes too. I’m not feeling as drunk as I was before. I shared the rest of my vodka and coke with the others. They’ve opened some beers but I’ve not drunk anymore. I think I’ve learnt my lesson from the two times I’ve blacked out since I’ve been in Sydney.
Stix’s mum, in her rollers and wearing her pink dress that looks like a negligee, opens the lounge door. “Mickey’s here,” she says.
I want to sink into the armchair. I don’t want him seeing me looking like a bloody lobster. And he’s probably going to be furious with me, or upset, that I didn’t show up to meet him last night – if that’s what the arrangement was. He walks into the room. He’s wearing a royal blue, floral patterned shirt. That must’ve been him outside the cafe this morning.
He kisses me on the cheek. “Up ya get.”
I stand up. He sits on the armchair. He pulls me onto his lap. It feels strange. This is what boyfriends and girlfriends do, I think. I’m used to punters who just want to fuck. This is something different. This is being close. And close in front of other people. This isn’t an act.
“I’m sorry about last night. We were meant to meet, weren’t we?” I say quietly.
“You get a better offer?” He smiles.
“Not really. Not at all.” I pass him the joint. “I saw Lorna and we–”
“Lorna, I might’ve known she’d be involved.”
“What do you mean?”
“I told her yesterday I was seeing you last night. What did she do? Tell you more stories about me?”
“No, she didn’t actually. She was nice.”
“I’ll bet.” He takes a pull on the spliff. “You need to be careful with your skin. The sun’s a killer here.”
“That’s Lorna’s bloody fault. She let me fall asleep in the midday sun…for the whole damn day.”
“You’re lucky that’s all she did.”
Of course, she left me asleep. I told her I was meant to be seeing a punter last night. She knew all along I was lying, that it was Mickey I’d arranged to meet. She let me burn to punish me. And I bet that’s why she took me to Kings Cross. She didn’t want to give me my fifty dollars back. She wanted to keep me away from him.