Once upon a time a geek had a crush on a princess, but it didn’t work out, and he resolved it and attempted to remain friends. In the heat of the discovery that he had money again (See Previous), he decided that since it was three months since he saw her, it would be an ideal time to text-message her and catch up. The responce was she was “dandy” and to “come to the Sussex tonight“. And so, at 20:30, Aquarion went into the Sussex Arms. Top to tail in black, big leather coat, Works.
For the next several hours, he caught up with Kate, who he hadn’t seen for three months, and Jenny, who he hadn’t seen for two years. This was Fun. There will be a Gathering Soon. Promise 🙂
At 11 O’Clock, Jenny drove Aquarion to the station so he could catch his (10 past 11) final train, Which he did, but only due to a helpful driver waiting a second at a helpful guard’s shout that I was helpfully running across the footbridge as fast as my little legs could carry me.
In the train there were already some people. Mainly, for the purposes of this, a group of four archtypical Lads On A Night Out. One was sober, two were mildly drunk, the largest was pissed out of his skull. They roughed. They Tumbled, They were Very Loud. Careful listening in to the conversation (I didn’t get much choice) revealeed them to be called “Goose” (The large, drunk one), “Weller” (Blonde, thin one), “Jones” (Short, Muscled one), and “Smith” (Whose name I didn’t catch. The quiet, sober one). As we paused outside Tonbridge Station, where I was due to get off, Goose decided it was time to release the alchol from his system in the traditional manner.
Connex Southeast have recently introduced some new trains to the area. These don’t have toilets. Were were, obviously, in one of the new ones. Goose left to try and find a toilet, the others watched though the window. From what I could gather from the noises they made, he then proceeded to piss against the inside of the door of the next cariadge. As he finished, the doors opened, and I got out of my carrage, and hoped never to ever see any of them again
I walked very fast across the footbridge, was mildly put out that my train wouldn’t be there for another 25 minutes, and sat down on a bench towards the far end of the platform – as is my habit – to watch the station cat (which is coloured ginger, and called Ginger) and to compose a diary entry.
About five minutes later, the quarreling quartet sat down beside me, Goose sprawled over a whole bench, and Smith next to me. The benches, for future referance, look like this:
+--+--+ | | | |A |B | | | | +--+--+ | | | |C |D | | | | +--+--+
Me and Smith are on bench C, Goose is sprawled on A, B contains a couple (The female of which – I was informed later – was wearing a skirt that was really, *really* short. They sat down after me, so I didn’t notice. This has a baring on what happens next). Jones & Weller then wander off to do something, possibly find a toilet, whilst Goose proclaims at the top of his (very loud) voice how “Utter Shit” the gig they just went to was, and Smith admits that Goose is intitled to his opinion, but in his own (Smith’s) the band were, in fact, “Shit Hot”. This went on for a while, During which a balding man came over to speak to the pretty girl in the Very Short Dress. He is now sitting on B.
Meanwhile, Eventually, Weller and Jones come back and sit either side of Goose on A. Roughness insures. So does Tumbleness. And much shouting of “It’s All Good (In The Hood)”. I gather that they are going to Ashford (a few stops down the line), that Smith isn’t drunk and has a good sense of humour, and that Goose *is* drunk and is also thick as shit. Oh, and that Jones is a semi-pro boxer.
The Man on B, who we shall call “Jeff”, because I think I overheard this as his name, is gradually geting irritated at the noise. Makes comments like “Keep it in the common room”. Loud enough for me to hear, but too quiet to penertrate the play-fight on bench A. Eventually – and this has been going on for just under 20 mins now, so we have five before the train – Jeff screws up his ball of fish & chip wrapping, and throws it behind him. IE, directly at the people on bench A.
They object. Crys of “Why did you throw your chip packet at us” ring out, Weller and Jones walk around to Jeff and ask, in terms of menace. This shouting continues until Jeff explains that he finds it ‘irritating that people your age act as if they are something special’ (God forbid people are allowed to *enjoy* their youth. The whole gang are – I’d guess – about 19 to early 20s, whilst Jeff is about 30ish. I’m crap at ages, I really am.
Anyway, This results in Jones calling Jeff a “Fat Prick”, whereupon Jeff loses his temper and grabs Jones and pushes him across the platform (Away from the tracks, I might add), The argument now at defcon 3, some random people intervene and the argument moves to the platform (On the diagram they would be clustered about an inch above B) Smith and Goose are involved now, Remaining mostly neutral in the arguing whilst Weller and (mostly) Jones shout. A big (6’7’ish, wide, heavy-type) bloke is seperating them, and Jeff asks “Would you call *him* a fat prick?” and, really, I can see his point. At this point the argument falls from the shaky ground of “we were making noise” to the much simpler “He chucked stuff at us” whilst the big bloke and his friend try to mediate.
This going on, I quitely pick up half of the missile that started the explosion. Goose notices, however, and encourages me to join in on the Right Side. My reponse, obviously, is “No Fucking Way”, and can you blame me? Before I can get to the second, however, Weller picks it up the other half of the packet, and throws it at Jeff. This appears to end the argument for most of them, and it disolves into the “Have we done shit to you?” quiet “Admit we are right, damnit” bits, apart from Jones (The Boxer, remember), who still wanted a fight. Fortunatly the train arrived at that point, and careful choreography by me, the big bloke and Jeff meant that there was someone between Jeff and Jones at all points, not so as it looked obvious, however.
We all got in the train. I met someone I hadn’t seen for ages, and we swapped pasts. The Quartet filed past me at one point towards Jeff, but shortly afterwards Me, Jeff, My Friend, and the girl with the Very Short Skirt all got off at Paddock Wood, whilst The Quartet carried on the train. Jeff looked shaken, but not bruised.
And we all lived happily ever after
I really hate last trains. Really. And Connex.