Lenny walked into the Tower Club, they were just playing some AC/DC. There were about twelve people inside, most older guys with tattoos and two women in their forties with way too much make-up. Behind the bar was a wiry guy with a Black Sabbath T-shirt and a buzzcut.
Lenny sat down at the bar and ordered a beer.
“Nice crowd,” he told the barkeeper.
“Don’t any younger girls come in here?”
“Sometimes. Mostly weekends. Those ladies are always here, trying to pick up dudes. Divorced women, you know the type.”
“Sure. I like Asian girls myself. Plus when they wear tattoos.”
“No kidding. That’s creepy,” the barkeeper said.
“There’s a regular here, this Asian chick with blond hair and tats everywhere. Incredibly hot.”
“No kidding. Has she been in today?”
“Last time I saw her was yesterday. Went home with this big dude.”
“She sounds great. Do you know her name?”
“Janey they call her. That dude was pretty big though. You wouldn’t want to get on his bad side, trying to put the moves on the chick.”
“Who says it’s serious now?”
The barkeeper shrugged. “Guess you’ve got a point there. I’ve seen her with a lot of dudes, never the same one.”
“So maybe I could be one of them.”
“Who knows. She never seemed too picky.”
“Was that an insult?”
“Sorry, dude. None intended,” the barkeeper said. “Have a beer on me.”
Lenny wasn’t one to say no to free beer, even when he was investigating. After a sip of it asked, “Could you give me a call when you see her?” He handed the bartender his business card, not the one for his PI gig but the one that identified him as a roadie.
The bartender had a look at the card. “Roadie, huh? Did you work with any bands I might know?”
“Bad Citizen Corporation?”
“The punk band? Cool. Not sure if I should give you a call when Janey is here, though. That sounds kinda wrong and creepy?”
“All in the name of love, man!”
The bartender laughed. “Okay, maybe. If you get me tickets for the next BCC show then?”
“They’re not playing anymore, but I guarantee you a spot on the guest list for the next Necromantic Poets gig.”
“Never heard of them.”
“No? They’re huge in Japan,” Lenny bluffed.
“Hey, how about some service here?” A muscular dude with graying long hair next to Lenny was apparently annoyed he had to wait to get the bartender’s attention.
The bartender told the guy he was sorry and took his order. It consisted of a large beer and a whiskey back. He downed it in the blink of an eye and ordered another. Lenny slowly finished his own drink and left the place.
As soon he was outside a hand grabbed his shoulder. Lenny turned around. The muscular dude from the bar.
“Yeah?” Lenny asked.
“Heard you asking about Janey. Leave her alone. She’s mine,” the muscular guy said.
“Huh? It’s really not cool to see a woman as property these days, dude.”
Lenny saw the fists coming but wasn’t fast enough to evade it. He rolled his head with the punch a bit, minimalizing the impact as much as possible. He was pretty good at taking punches.
Lenny pushed the man away from him. “Not cool!”
The muscular man punched Lenny in the gut. He was even better at taking a punch there, a result of many days on the road eating fastfood and drinking beer.
“Stop it!” Lenny yelled and hit his attacker in the mouth. Blood trickled from enemy’s face. Lenny followed up with another hard push, putting all his considerable weight behind it. The guy stumbled backwards, lost his balance and landed on his ass.
“Bastard!” the muscular man said.
“Hey, you’re the one who started it.”
The muscular man jumped up, tackling Lenny against the floor. On top of him now he started to punch him in the face. The guy was pretty strong but Lenny had muscles of his own underneath his fat. Dragging along all those heavy amplifiers and stuff had been a better workout than a gym. He heaved the graying man off him with a grunt. A painful crack sounded when his back hit the pavement.
Slowly Lenny got up, feeling the blood drip down his chin. His face hurt like hell. He made his way to his Dodge Ram, not looking back, just getting in. He drove off, dared a glance in the rearview mirror and saw the muscular guy still lying on the floor, shaking an angry fist at him.