“Do you think he’s dead?” asked Ned, as he looked through the front of the car.

“No, I don’t see how. But I’ve never seen someone throw up into a windscreen before. My life flashed in front of my eyes,” replied Leon.

The events, as Ned understood them, were causal. Leon’s motion sickness caused him to eject over Monday. Monday vomited into the window in front of him, which, because of the shape of the glass and velocity of chunks, created a direct facial return. Causing the rare vomit induced vomit loop.

Now, Monday was passed out in the passenger seat, covered in, well, the obvious. So was most of the windscreen.

Somehow, Ned and Leon had escaped the car totally untouched by the obvious. Which was in of itself a miracle.

“Should we wake him?” Leon asked.

“I don’t think I want to be here when he wakes up,” Ned considered. “We’re just going to get a part two.”

Leon nodded at this. “We leave him a pile of cleaning crap and go find a pub?”

Ned shrugged and looked around. They were close to the Warpost, the town’s strange and independent supermarket.


Ned and Leon sat in the closest pub, which had been the same one he had been in on the previous night. The ‘Trashcan’ was a total dive. Once you entered, you were greeted with a long thin room with a bar that ran the entire length of the pub, with slim standing tables opposite. This left enough room to stand at the bar and nothing else.

Ned and Leon had gained a pint of bitter each and sat at the slightly wider section of the thin pub by the entrance. The two of them were the only people in there, due to it being quite early in the day.

“You think he’ll find us?” Leon asked, noticing his phone was out of battery.

Ned’s was about half charged but, as he pointed out, “If you were looking for me, where would you go first?” he asked.

“Good point,” Leon agreed.

A speaker came to life at the opposite end of the room, slowly filling the bar with eighties pop classics. The obviously disinterested muscular bartender wiped the pointlessly long surface and showed little interest in what was happening on the other side of his domain.

“Why are you slightly blue today?” Leon asked, finally forcing himself to query the oddity.

Neil looked up as he took a drink. “Not sure. I have a vague memory of a conversation about frogs, some alien and a Bat-man… and that’s about it.”

“Frogs are green,” Leon noted, taking a drink himself.

Ned noticed the music in the background had begun repeating in that way that a vinyl record does when it was stuck. Leon was saying something about some toads being brown. The conversation faded into the background as Ned looked across the galley of a pub.

The lights began to flicker as a second or so of Queen’s ‘Fat Bottom Girls’ looped over and over.

Ned stood up and took a curious step towards the bar. The song kept hitching. Ned felt a pressure on him. Under the mess of audio, there was another sound. A voice talking. He tilted his head to try to hone in on them. The music stopped, and the lights came back on. Ned heard the words, “He can hear me!” in urgently whispered, ghostly tones.

There was a thud.

Leon smacked the table in front of him. “Are you having a stroke or something, Ned?”

Leon looked at him expectantly. Ned looked down at his empty glass.

“Some frogs are blue,” he said, trying to work out what had just happened.

“What? No! We’re past that now, you dozy wanker. We’re on to it being your round!”

Ned nodded and took the two or three steps across the gap to the bar. He fished out his phone and checked that he did, in fact, have a little money left.

“What do you want then?” the notably skinny woman behind the bar asked him.

“Were did the fella go?” Ned asked, looking around, wondering how he missed someone leaving.

“Why? Doesn’t the fucking patriarchy want to be served by a wench? Too fucking good, are we?” the woman said with a frown.

She was a classic punk looking woman with sharp features and a large head on a tiny frame. Though the piercings and extreme makeup probably made her look more angular than she actually was.

“Two bitters please, wench.”

“Get fucked!” she replied, tapping the till as she poured two fresh pints.

Ned tapped his phone and took the drink back to the table.

Leon looked excited and took the ale from him with glee.

They were just reaching the bottoms of the glasses and having an in-depth discussion about things that neither of them really understood, when the room was flooded with light. A figure stood, one arm on each door, standing proudly between them. Ned and Leon were startled by the bravado of the figure for a moment.

“Oh, it’s just Monday,” Ned said and turned back to his conversation. “What were we talking about?”

Monday walked to the table shirtless and annoyed. His delicate form was not something that was suited to exposed nipples.

“Cars clean. You dicks.”

Ned and Leon necked their pints and stood up with purpose. “Good!” Ned said. “You can drive; we’re over the limit!” he added, gleefully.


The car cruised up the motorway, Monday driving, Leon in the passenger seat and Ned in the back. Leon had been pretty certain that he had ‘won’ by having the front seat. Now though, he complained he could ‘still smell the sick,’ which came as no shock to Ned, who was stretched out in the back and very relaxed. No vomit odour odiously assaulting him.

“How far is Scotland? Do I just keep going up?” Monday asked, gesturing to the GPS that was built into the car’s dashboard.

“That’s not up, you fucking muffin! That’s north, or forward, or something,” Leon said sternly, trailing off as he realised he didn’t know either. It wasn’t ‘up’ though, he was sure about that, because they were going downhill.

Ned, still relaxing in the back, pulled out his phone and sent a message to Viking.

Ned: Coming to save you - plz send location.

He hit send, wondering if this adventure would be worth the effort.

His phone vibrated in his hand. He looked down at the screen.

Viking: Good. Creepy voicez - bothering me.

Ned blinked at the message. As he considered its strange contents, it vibrated again, and another line was added.

Viking: I don’t trust the punk girl with the big head.

Ned blinked at this new line, but now with a sense of confused urgency.

He sat up, almost dropping his phone with confusion and a little uneasy fear. The motion got the attention of those in front.

“If you fucking chuck up on me we’re having words, Ned!” Leon chastised, with an urgency of his own.

The car swerved a little. A passing truck honked its horn. Monday ignored it.

“Oh, my god! Did you have a bad dream?” Leon asked, smirking at Ned’s sudden flurry of motion. “Fucking baby!” he added for good measure.

Ned grunted in annoyance and profanity before looking back at the screen on his phone.

Ned: Coming to save you - plz send location.

Viking: Got off train like you said to. Scary place.

Ned: Where you end up?

Viking: Am in Startlington. Things got strange after last night. Bring food!

Ned scratched his head. Had the message changed, or had he fallen asleep?

“Where’s Startlington?” he asked the front.

“How would I know; this is the farthest I’ve ever been from my house!” Monday announced. “Also, I’m not sure I have a driving license. Is that a problem? Should I have a licence?”

Ned ignored him and turned his attention to the slightly more competent Leon, who was already checking his phone.

“Damn sight closer than Scotland!” Leon announced. “Is that where the bloody great tit ended up?” Leon looked hugely entertained. “At least he’s not in space or something just as ludicrous!”

“Well, if anyone can accidentally go on a trip into space, it would be Viking… Or me, I suppose,” Ned responded, glibly.

“Unbelievable!” Leon replied, looking back and grinning.

“Where the fuck am I driving to, then?” Monday asked.

Ned looked at his phone. “Not as far as Scotland, and given you don’t have a license, that’s probably a good thing.”

Chapter 5