A PRIVATE PARTY
The party was being held in a spacious apartment in Mid-Levels, a huge residential area on the island overlooking Hong Kong harbour, where many of Hong Kong’s professionals chose to live. Tyler stared around the living room, it seemed bigger than Tyler’s entire flat. It seemed full of important people, chatting about important things. Surely all these people can’t be gay, thought Tyler? He sighed. How did he get himself into this position? He had such great plans for himself when he had qualified, all those years ago. He was grateful to Ben for bringing him to Hong Kong. If truth be told, Tyler’s legal career in England had not hit the heights. Six jobs in as many years told it’s own story. Tyler was the most likeable person in the world, but that was not always a good thing in the practice of law. People were constantly taking advantage of him. Tyler realized this, and that Ben and Dylan were doing that very thing even now, and he had gone along with it. Yet, thought Tyler, if he can make some decent money out of it, he didn’t mind chatting up some old judge for an hour or two.
“There he is!” said Sebastian.
“Where?” said Tyler.
“That Chinese bloke over by the potted plant. Talking to that small woman, who by the way happens to be Judge Walker. She’s a lesbian.”
“Christ, what’s happening to the judiciary in Hong Kong. Are there any straight judges?”
“A few. Look out, he’s coming over!”
Indeed he was. He could be no taller than five feet, with a Hitler- type moustache. He was also wearing the ubiquitous black dinner- suit.
“Ah, Sebastian, my boy, how are you?” said the judge. “Doing very well, judge, how’s court life these days?”
“Don’t talk about it, Sebastian, Hong Kong seems full of scoundrels these days, most of them solicitors. Not the same since 1997.”
“Must agree with you there, judge. May I introduce to you my good friend, Tyler Scott?”
The judge looked Tyler up and down. He clearly liked what he saw. In truth, Tyler was quite a handsome chap, tall and lean, and he had obviously tickled the judge’s fancy without opening his mouth. Tyler smiled nervously at the judge.
“Er...good evening judge.”
“Oh, good grief, man, call me Arnold, may I call you Tyler?” The judge leered at Tyler.
“Oh...yes, of course.”
“Sebastian”, murmured the judge, “are you and Tyler....you know...”
“No, judge, we’ve been friends for years, but it’s fair to say we are not romantically involved.”
“Certainly not!”, said Tyler, appalled.
“Good show!”, said the judge. “Always good to get some new blood on the scene, isn’t that right Sebastian? How long have you been in Hong Kong, Tyler?”
“About three years”, stammered Tyler.
“Jolly good! And your job is...?”
Sebastian and Tyler had spoken about this. Clearly he could not say he worked for Roberts McCann or the cat would be out of the bag. He could not admit to being a solicitor either, as the judge would simply check out the law directory. It was decided to avoid the law altogether.
“I’m...er...in retail. Fabrics, things like that” It seemed safe enough. “Excellent. We all need clothing, eh Seb?”
“Yes indeed, judge” “Although sometimes it’s better to do without, eh Tyler?”
“Ha,ha...yes...at times.” Tyler looked at Sebastian and started to sweat.
“Do you like rubber, Tyler?”
“I beg your pardon?”
“Rubber, man. Good against the crotch.”
“Ah. Yes, we deal in rubber, import it from Malaysia. Good stuff, good quality. Sell a lot to diving shops.” Tyler wondered what he was rambling on about.
“Good show!” said the judge. “Couldn’t get some for me, could you?” The judge gave Tyler a wink. “Tyler, I must introduce you to Judge Walker over there, have you met before?”
“No”, said Tyler. Thank goodness he did criminal law, he never came before these civil judges. He was now sweating profusely. The judge noticed this.
“It is rather hot in here, isn’t it Seb? Shall we take our jackets off? Or our trousers?” He laughed manically.
“Actually, if you will both excuse me”, said Sebastian, “ I see my ex-boyfriend over there, I’ll have to go and say hello”.
“Of course, my boy”, said the judge. Tyler gave Sebastian a pleading stare. Sebastian smiled at him. “Have fun, Tyler!” He walked over to a group on the other side of the room.
“Just us now, eh Tyler!”
“Yes”, said Tyler miserably.
After a while, however, to his astonishment, Tyler found himself having a good time. The old judge was actually amusing company, and he introduced Tyler to a number of people, all of whom happened to be gay. Tyler had heard of some of them. He drank too much wine and became drunk very quickly. At some point, late in the evening, he found himself alone on the balcony of the flat. Tyler was completely smashed by this stage. He stared blankly at the view over the harbour, one of the best views in town, yet barely noticed it. He felt something touch his bottom, and turned around to find Judge Chang grinning at him.
“You know, Tyler”, said the judge, “I like you very much.”
“And I like you too, judge”, slurred Tyler. “There’s only one problem, I’m...”
“Don’t talk about problems, Tyler, life’s full of problems, let’s just forget them tonight, eh?”
“No, you don’t understand, I’m...”
“Tyler, not one more word. I know I’m old enough to be your father, but I assure you, everything’s in full working order, if that’s what you’re worried about. Gets a regular service.”
“I’m sure it does, but there’s someone else, judge.” Tyler had decided this was the best way to get out of this.
“There’s always someone else, Tyler, my boy. I fall in and out of love at the drop of a hat. And I’ve just dropped my hat again.”
Tyler was confused now. What hat?
“You’ve lost your hat? I’m sorry to hear that.”
“Tyler, you’re so funny. I love you, Tyler, if you were a woman, I would like to make you pregnant! Although of course if you were a woman, I would likely not be talking to you.”
Tyler stared at him. He had lost the judge’s drift again. The room began to spin. The judge wanted to make him pregnant?
“Ah, yes”, said Tyler, “only one difficulty there judge, I’m a man.”
The judge grabbed Tyler by the shoulders. “Yes, Tyler, I know that, you’re a man, a real man, not like these sniveling lawyer–types I see every day, you’re passionate like me, you’re a good man, I know you don’t want to be unfaithful to your partner, but Tyler, let us seize the moment, and let destiny run it’s true course!”
“Passion is no ordinary word”, said Tyler, quoting a line from a Graham Parker song. He was about to fall over, and could hardly speak.
“You’re right! Oh so right!”
“Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting”
“Yes! It is! We must fight for love, Tyler, true love does not run smooth!”
“It’s The End Of The World As We Know It.” Tyler was a big R.E.M. fan.
“No! No, Tyler, it’s just the start! A start of a heavenly journey!”
“Just Like Heaven.” And The Cure.
“Yes! Just like heaven. Oh, you see, Tyler! I know you can see!”
“I Can See Clearly Now The Rain Has Gone.”
“Yes, it has stopped raining, Tyler, The Lord shines for us!”
“My Sweet Lord”
“Yes, let’s get out of this corner, Tyler, you’re so right!” The judge squeezed Tyler’s balls. Tyler fainted.
He woke up in a dimly lit room. He had a throbbing headache. Where the hell was he? He looked around. He was lying on a huge king-size bed, naked, save for his Bradford City Football Club Y- fronts. What was going on? He tried to think. He had been to some sort of party...shit! He remembered the judge. Why was he semi- naked? Surely the judge hadn’t...he bolted upright, his hangover gone. He heard a noise. The door slowly opened.
“Tyler...I’m coming, ready or not!”
The judge came through the door. Tyler stared at him, appalled. The judge was wearing his court wig, and a pair of suspenders. Nothing else.
“Mr. Scott”, shouted the judge, “I find you guilty of the offence of being a raving queen. Do you have anything to say before I pass sentence?”
“I say, judge, there appears to have been a major misunderstanding here....”
“Silence! I hereby sentence you to a morning of oral sex, and an afternoon of anal penetration. Come here, you love piston, you...”
With that, he threw himself onto the bed. Tyler yelped and jumped out of his way, crashing to the carpet.
“Tyler!” howled the judge, “Let us consummate our love!”
He jumped at Tyler again. Tyler screamed, and ran for the door. He somehow managed to find the front door of the flat, and ran down the fire escape at record speed. He reached the road, and tried to hail a taxi. After five abortive attempts he remembered that he was dressed in only his underwear. He looked at his watch. 3.30am. There was no choice. He had to walk back home to Wanchai. He kept to the shadows for the thirty minute walk, muttering death threats against Dylan and Ben along the way. He finally reached home, and collapsed onto his bed. Wait till I see those bastards, he thought. He fell into an uncomfortable sleep. He was awoken at 9.00am by the telephone. He staggered into the living room.
“Hello”, he mumbled.
“Tyler! How did it go, mate?”. It was Dylan.
“Dylan? You’re dead meat, mate, wait till I see you later...”
“How was the judge?”
“How was the judge, I was nearly shafted silly by the bloody judge, I might have been so far as I know....” The doorbell rang. “Bloody hell, who’s that on a Sunday morning, hold on.” He went to the door, still in his Bradford City underpants. They looked a bit stained, thought Tyler, alarmed. He opened the door to find two uniformed policeman.
“Tyler Scott?” said one. Tyler nodded his confirmation, open- mouthed.
“I hereby arrest you for the murder of Mr. Justice Arnold Chang Wai-yee. You have the right of silence but anything you do say can be taken down and used as evidence against you...” Tyler did not hear the rest. He was led away in handcuffs, still in his underpants.