Bang. Bang. Bang. The in house band of the KNOCK KNOCK Club, the Knock Knockers, thumped through the music as the headlining act of that night took to the stage.
“What the fuck!?” TABITHA exclaimed from the balcony as her aunt TAWNY, stumbled across the stage, forgetting her cues and lyrics. Those lyrics she did remember were a slurred mess. The strap of the gold top she wore hung loosely on her shoulder. The great Knock Knock BARONESS was spiraling and spiraling fast. She had been a performer all of her life and never had she let an adoring audience down. It wasn’t like her.
Tabitha looked to the tall, pretty, raven haired woman beside her. “What the fuck!?” she asked again.
AGNES was the BROKER of the club. She and Tawny opened the club together. The club was their life. Normally she would have chastised Tawny’s pre teen niece for the language she was using but she too was just as shocked.
“Shit. Sorry folks,” Tawny said as she fell into the mic stand causing it to fall over. The music hummed to a halt as the Baroness struggled to lift the mic again.
“She promised me she was okay,” Agnes growled, more to herself than Tabitha. “I’m going to have to pull her off. You wait here,”
Agnes strode towards the door. She turned back as though she had remembered something. “Stay out of trouble.”
Tabitha rolled her eyes. She tugged on the white KNOCK KNOCK t shirt she wore and turned back to the balcony. “I think I’m the least of your worries. Will you get her off there before she makes a complete cunt of herself?” Tabitha was now watching the uncomfortable, shocked club patrons wonder what was happening with their beloved BARONESS.
Agnes ignored that language too. She agreed. There were more pressing matters to attend to.
TABITHA was young then but she had learned from her aunts that the club was more than just cabaret and booze. It was a symbol. It had strong walls and the troubles were left outside. Seeing Tawny in such a state meant that the castle had been breached.
Before long, some of the dancers came onto the stage and led TAWNY off. The held her up as she slid and stumbled. Tabitha watched her aunt being led off into the darkness. She often played the clown on stage, she loved to make people laugh but this was different. This was not intended and because of it a wave of discomfort clouded over the evening crowd. The patrons started talking among themselves. Tabitha knew what they would be saying. Even the MACKS, who were no strangers to being led away, too drunk to function, were talking. Things were falling apart and someone had to take charge. She had the spirit of that BOSS LADY.
Jack, the compare for the club took over. He was an endearing man, effervescent and skilled at what he did so before long he had the club running again, the music playing and the guests settled. When ten minutes passed and Agnes hadn’t returned to the balcony Tabitha ventured down to the green room. She found Tawny sat on an old, bottle green sofa in the corner. She was clutching Agnes’ arm. She had been weeping but when she saw Tabitha she smiled.
“I’ll go get you some water,” said Agnes, departing from the room and leaving them alone.
Tawny reached out and Tabitha took her hand. “Hey Trouble,” she said. Her normally bright eyes were dull.
Tawny pulled her onto the couch and into her arms. She kissed her head and hugged her tight.
“What was that?” Tabitha asked.
Tawny sighed. She still wasn’t gathering the energy she normally had. “I’m having an off night, honey.”
“Off night? You looked like you could have pissed yourself,” Tabitha returned. “What’s happened?”
Tawny reached into the sofa beside her where a letter had been stuffed. It had a columnar building stamped on it surrounded by a wreath. It was the seal of the LAW MAKERS. “We have our day in court,” she said.
Tabitha looked at the letter. She read it briefly, focusing on the hearing that had been agreed upon by JUDGE DOYLE.
“That’s good news, isn’t it?” Tabitha still wondered what her aunt had taken so badly.
Tawny finally smiled. “It is. I guess it just hit me what all of it means.”
Tabitha stopped her. “One way or another we’re going to fuck them all up.”
Tawny laughed. “You bet your ass we will my scrappy little kitten.”
Tabitha grinned. Her gap toothed smile so innocent and so out of place under the looming circumstances.
Tabitha was ready for the war that her day in court would cause.
A day in court in the Shady City is always bound to cause a stir. Some cause an all out war!