Ladies and gentlemen, we present....THE BEATLES!!”
The lads gritted their their teeth, the screaming already deafening them from back stage. Fixing false grins, they bounced onto the stage. The concert began, each one hating the fact that they could barely hear themselves think never mind anyone in the audience actually enjoying their music.
“.....and our final song is ’Twist and Shout!”
John looked across at the other three and rolled his eyes, the screams making it impossible to even think straight!
They took their bows then, at a discrete signal from Brian backstage, the exited swiftly. Instruments were handed over to roadies as the aim now was to get the lads out of the building as quickly and as safely as possible. They raced along a narrow corridor which led to the stage door, laughing and shouting to each other as they did. John first, then Paul, Ringo then lastly George. Somehow George got partially separated from the others, keen to make up the distance he ran harder. Then, from nowhere she appeared, and unable to stop, he hit her with such force that she fell to the floor. Although winded himself, George turned to help, apologising like mad!
He looked up to see Brian’s furious face. Apologising once more, he ran for his life.
The next day, the lads were booked at the same venue. The plan, as the day before, was to be smuggled into the venue for the sound check then to hang around for a couple of hours ready for the start of the show. Sound check over, the four of them headed back to their dressing room. Brian was waiting for them, a stern look on his face.
“Do not, under any circumstances, leave this building.”
“What about if there’s a fire?” drawled John’s sarcastic voice. The other lads sniggered.
Brian gave them all a withering look, causing the sniggers to subside.
“Food and drink can be requested at any time and will be brought directly to you here. The bathroom is immediately opposite this room. And finally, after the concert...” he stated, glaring at George, “...once we have the signal to leave then that’s what you need to do. We can only guarantee that window of safety when we tell you. No fooling around...any of you! Are we clear on that.”
There were some half hearted mummurings. Shaking his head, Brian left them.
“Wonder what’s pissed him off?” asked Paul.
“It’ll have been George last night, trying to chat some bird up!” laughed Ringo.
“No I wasn’t,” said George. He threw a cushion at his band mate in annoyance. “I accidentally ran into her and knocked her flying. I was trying to check she was OK that’s all!”
They were interrupted by a quiet knock on the door.
“Come in!” called John, standing up.
The door opened. The manager of the venue entered carrying a huge plate full of sandwiches. George immediately flocked to him, always hungry. Behind him came a young girl carrying an equally large plate loaded with cakes.
“There’s drinks to follow gentlemen,” he said, “Alice here will bring through whatever you would prefer.” He turned and left the room.
A petite dark haired girl of around twenty looked at them all. She smiled nervously at them. “Hello. I’m here to take your drink orders gentlemen. We have tea, coffee, cola and lemonade. Mr Epstein has left strict instructions that we are not to serve you alcohol. I’m sorry.”
“So Alice,” said John, standing close to the young girl, “You’re here to SERVE us? To give us WHAT we NEED?”
“John, stop it!” Paul began to feel sorry for the girl, who was clearly mortified by the suggestive play on words.
John turned to Paul, “I’m only having a bit of fun. To pass the time.”
“Not using this girl you’re not!” George stepped forward suddenly. He had recognised the girl. “Hey,” he said softly, smiling at her “You’re the girl I knocked over yesterday! Are you OK? It was an accident but I couldn’t stop. I am so sorry.”
She looked up at him and smiled. “It’s OK. I’m fine. It’s my fault anyway because we were warned to keep the path clear. I just thought you’d all gone.”
George looked into her face. She was beautiful. Her chestnut hair hung in soft curls past her shoulders, which complimented the subtle rosiness of her cheeks and warm brown of her eyes. “As long as you’re sure you’re OK?”
He held out his hand. “I’m George.”
She shook it briefly. “Alice.”
“Now that you two are acquainted,” whispered Paul, moving between them, “Is there any chance of getting a drink here. We’re all gasping?”
Alice jumped, and, after apologising, rushed from the room.
“Like what you see there Georgie?” said John looking at his mate.
Uncharacteristically, George scowled and left the room.
“Seems everyone’s in a bit of a nark today.” remarked Ringo solemnly.
George stood outside the room. He looked left then right, wondering which way the girl could have gone. He knew left led to the exit so he tried the right. Finally he found her. She was working an hot urn to make them all a huge pot of tea and another of coffee. There was already milk, sugar, cups and saucers on each tray. She looked hot and bothered, he noticed, as she struggled to to alter a lever.
“OUCH!” She jumped back, tears in her eyes, as her hand was soaked in boiling water. George rushed over.
“That must hurt!” he exclaimed, “Let’s get that under the cold tap.” He pulled over for her to sit down and held her hand under the tap. She winced with pain and wiped her tears.
“You really don’t need to do this. I’ll be fine.” she said, trying to pull her hand away.
“No! Keep it under the cold or it will blister.” He examined her hand, “I think you should go to hospital with this you know.”
“I can’t! my boss, he’ll go mad! It’s bad enough that I’m late getting drinks for you lot!”
George watched as she went pale. “Mrs Hudson I..”
“Hello,” interrupted George, giving the woman one of his best PR smiles. “George Harrison of The Beatles madam,” he bowed slightly, “I’m afraid I got lost on my way back to my dressing room Unfortunately, I distracted this lovely young lady, causing her to be badly scalded as a result. I was trying to help her but I think she needs hospital treatment. I can only apologise to both of you. You madam, for disrupting your staff and then also this poor girl who has an injury because of my actions.”
The woman, clearly starstruck, looked at the burned hand. “He’s right Alice love. I think you should leave tonight and go to the hospital.”
“And I must insist on paying for your taxi fare to and from the hospital.” said George softly, “I’d hate to think this lady would be out of pocket as a result.” Whilst the older woman was looking away, he opened his wallet and took out a twenty pound note and pressed it into Alice’s hand. He silently shushed her.
“A taxi is on the way Alice love.”
George insisted on staying with her until the taxi arrived. “Please,” he said, pressing a piece of into her good hand, “ring me later on this number and let me know how you are!” He gave her a soft kiss on the cheek and she left.
He wandered back to the other lads.
“Sulked for long enough?” laughed John, as he entered the room.
“Fuck off Lennon!” He retorted before settling down for a sleep.