“So,” said Lazy Baker, “First you swung through a forest of dongs like a gibbon on vines.” Her cat stared at Mewsy insolently.
“Then you grabbed one in particular and it turned out to be attached to a dude, and now you’re stuck with him.” She blew smoke out her nose.
Mewsy said, “It’s not like that at all,” and reshouldered her old fur. “Tybalt is my -” she reached for a cigarette – “my – my inspiration.”
“Ms. Stone, if you want to be a real star your only inspiration should be the pleasure of your gentleman listener.” Lazy rubbed at her puss.
“Course I haven’t actually seen Tyb since I briefly became a nun after he caught me with Futkas,” said Mewsy quickly. “I suppose it’s over.”
“That’s how Mr. Agopolos wants it,” said Lazy pointedly. “You’ll recall that, contractually, he claims sole access to your, er, resources.”
Mewsy shivered. Tybalt’s ring still clad her finger, but it was not his scent that clung to her clunge. It was the musk of Futkas Agopolos.
She’d discovered last night Futty still had the power to zing her in her pinky bits. And there WAS a contract – but that was her own affair.
“Look, Lady,” she said, “Cut the Love Police act and mind your own biz. Leave it to Fut if I’m too trampy to be tethered to a single wang.”
“It’s pronounced ‘Lazy,'” snapped Lazy, “And it’s my job to husband Mr. A.’s investments. Think of me as someone you don’t want to piss on.”
Mewsy sucked back her ire and smiled politely. “Now now, Lazy baby, let’s all get along. Surely Fut doesn’t want me soured with reprimands.”
“Mr. Agopolos wants me to make you the best little songbird you can be. I’m a producer, not your wet nurse. Now: let’s see about the goods.”
“You might turn down these garish lights,” Mewsy grumbled, producing her jugs. “I may just be some whore but I have my pride.” Lazy smirked.
“I’m sure,” she replied, “That your bosom’s sufficient. Could you give me a taste of your voice?” Her tone was replete with flagrant scorn.
Wordlessly, with her head held high, Mewsy folded her chest-flesh back into her blouse. Then she breathed, “Of course. Why didn’t you say.”
Mewsy wasn’t a singer but had high self-esteem. She knew that was half the battle. She’d let slip once to Fut that she dreamed of the stage.
Remembering that, he’d arranged this debut just to win back her bruised affection. Which was working. Mewsy stood up and cleared her throat.
In a raw but lusty soprano she belted, “Green grows the grass in my panties since you’ve gone / Without your plowing I’ve gone all to seed.”
“Well, sure I miss your kissin’ and your good looks and your brawn / But most of all your cock is what I need.” An old music hall chestnut.
She flung out her arms launching into verse two: “Come home to me, hon, my legs are rusted shut / I need your grease to lubrify my hinge…”
Lazy held up one elegant finger, and blinked with a coldness that pooked Mewsy’s nips. “Ms. Stone, have you ever met someone terribly rich?”
Mewsy was incensed. Before the split she and Tyb had enjoyed an estate that was squirming with manservants barely contained in their livery.
But she wouldn’t give this insultress the pleasure of banter. Instead she just stared and took sucks from her cig. The cat flicked its tail.
“Our clients are Lords of the Upper Crust,” Lazy said when she got no reply. “Men who cannot, will not abide any article stinking of cheap.”
“Don’t think you’re the first to call me trash,” Mewsy said, replacing the fag in her jade smoke holder. “You’re not even the first today.”
“If you want to step onto the stage at La Cigarette Électrique you’ll learn how to make like a lady,” Lazy smiled. “Start by wearing a bra.”
“Futty paid you to make me a star, not ogle my tits,” Mewsy said. “We all know your Club’s just a puddle for rich old dicks to get wet in.”
“Maybe so,” Lazy purred, “But not everyone knows – at least, not yet – that you still let Big Piercey Pierpont French kiss your womanhood.”
Mewsy’s blood froze. It was true; she’d signed Futkas’s deal, but she still got an innocent lick now and then from a bouncer at her Bordell.
“I see,” she said softly, “And what do you want for that little piece of goss?” “Don’t be tawdry,” said Lazy, “I know how to keep a secret.”
She stood up and stepped round her desk. Her heels clicked the hardwood as she gently cooed, “Lazy only wants Mewsy to know she can trust her.”
To Mewsy this tone shift and pronoun misuse were disturbing, even moreso the minute that Lazy’s minge parked itself inches from Mewsy’s ear.
“Mewsy can’t even trust herself,” Mewsy said. She turned to face the Beast. “If you want a slurpjob as hush money, Baker, don’t pussyfoot.”
“Now would that be so bad?” Lazy asked, her chastisements now melted to syrup. “I heard a ripe tale about you and your naughty nun friend.”
Mewsy knew that a tonguewag would smooth this all out, but this bitch churned the gall in her loin. She just couldn’t do squishies with her.
“Sorry, sweetie,” minxed Mewsy, “You shoulda been nice. Mean men I can stomach, but females with hank’rin’s for ginger have gotta kiss up.”
Lazy swivelled, clicked back to her seat, and said, “Right.” She fished through a drawer in her desk. “Let’s keep things professional then.”
“You should know,” she went on, having found a cat snack, “In the business realm, I yield to Claudette Klein. She’s much more savvy than I.”
“How ’bout it, Claudette?” Lazy said through her teeth, “What’ll we do with this slut?” She held out her hands, a treat in each, to the cat.
“The left means spilling to Futkas. The right means sending her off for her Etiquette, Voice, and Deportment as planned to Maria Toilette.”
Mewsy watched as Claudette’s whiskers twitched. “What’s that?” Lazy asked, as if kitty had spoken. “You say you don’t know which is worse?”
“Well, say what you want about Maria Toilette – recalcitrant seaward, no-account man-eater, slut – I’ve heard ’em all. That queen can sing.”