Debra Fran Baker


 Blair couldn't keep still. Even the seatbelt couldn't hold him. Jim could glare at him all he wanted to...nothing was going to stop him from bouncing. Anyway, Jim was smiling, too, so he couldn't be mad.

"Turn right, turn right, turn right!"

"Gotcha, Chief. How much further?"

"Just a couple of blocks...see that marquee?"

"Can't miss it. Purple and pink?" Jim looked at him strangely.

"Yeah...well, it's..."

"I know this part of town. I got very familiar with it once upon a time." For some reason, Jim rubbed his left earlobe, the pierced one. Right...Jim used to work vice.

"This is okay by you, Jim?"

Jim shrugged. "Why wouldn't it be?"

They found a parking place and strolled to the club together. Blair took the opportunity to observe the natives in their colorful garb, engaging in their mating rituals. And there was much to observe, and many of them observing him.

Or were they observing Jim? He could believe all eyes would be on his partner. For a moment, he worried about Jim's reaction to this, but one quick glance told him Jim didn't mind. Another glance told him that Jim was...fitting in. Oh, God, he was actually flirting with that guy in the green wig!

"Jim? What is going on here?"

He gave the green-haired guy a little wave. A *little* wave? "Nothing, Chief. Just...making myself at home."

"What are you talking about?" Jim just smiled.

"Here we are. Let's get a table."

The bouncer looked like he was going to ask for Blair's ID, but then he saw Jim.

And nodded. Jim nodded back, put his hand on the small of Blair's back and walked to a table only inches from the stage.

A pretty person of indeterminate gender walked up to them. "What can I get you two?"

"A couple of beers, sweetheart."

Blair narrowed his eyes and stared at his partner. There was something different about him...something about the way he was sitting, the way he was holding his features. Blair shook his head. Jim was having fun. That was it...he was just exercising that strange sense of humor of his.

"Sure thing, gorgeous. Be right back. Enjoy th