Judy makes a mistake and then gets fired. Retro Fiction.
Locksford Cheshire. 1963.
Judy was having a night out with Rachel, one of the girls that worked with her at the cosmetic factory whom she also knew from her days at the dance studio. They were at the King's Arms in Locksford and Judy already had a few too many Brandy and Babychams.
"So how often does he go to Liverpool then?" Rachel asked.
"Not that much, only when he's having a sulk. Says he's going training at a boxing club his mate runs but he never takes any kit and always goes dressed up and stays the night at his friends."
"Yeah, I know of his mate there. He does run a boxing club but he also runs a late night rock 'n' roll club as well."
"Have you been there?"
"No, Judy. But I know a couple of girls that have. It's supposed to be a right popular place. You don't think Kenny is putting himself about up there, do you?"
"No, I trust him and he trusts me."
"I'll get the drinks," Rachel said.
"No, I've had enough. Think I'll get off home."
"Don't do that. If you leave me on my own I'll have to go as well. Can't stay in a bar on my own. Anyway, see that lad with the ginger hair? He works at his family's boatyard. I want to get with him. Maybe he'll take me for a ride in one of the boats."
"And what sort of ride would you be after then?" Both girls laughed before Rachel went off to the bar.
Judy was beginning to feel drowsy and her head dropped and then she snapped it up again. Her friend was soon back with the drinks.
"You look drunk," Rachel said. "You haven't had that many drinks."
"No, I was bored on my own so I called at the Ring O'Bells on my way here and had a few drinks with the crowd in there." Judy took a sip of her potent drink. "I do like this Brady and Babycham though. I've never tried it before."
A while later Rachel went off to the ladies room. Judy noticed that on her way back she had stopped to talk to the lad with ginger hair. Judy picked up her glass but it seemed to be swaying about. She seemed transfixed for a few moments and when she looked up Rachel and the lad had gone.
"Yeah, goodbye, Rachel, thanks a bloody lot." Judy finished her drink and swayed as she walked from the bar. Outside the fresh air hit her and almost unbalanced her. She stumbled forward and tripped falling flat on her face on the pavement.
"Judy, Judy, are you all right?" A young man who had followed her out helped her to her feet. "You've cut your leg." He stooped down to check the wound. "It's not that bad, just needs cleaning." Judy wobbled and almost fell again. "Come on, I'll take you home."
Judy looked at the lad. She knew his face but could not remember his name. "You don't know where I live though."
"Yes, I do, you live with Kenny by the Ringers. I'll get you home and he can look after you."
"Huh! He doesn't care about me ya'know. He's in Liverpool living it up and I probably won't see him until tomorrow afternoon."
He struggled to get her to Kenny's house without her falling over again and helped her inside. He bathed her knee, but she was falling asleep and eventually collapsed on the couch. He pulled her up off the couch and managed to get her up to her bedroom where she collapsed on the bed. He removed her outer clothing and stood looking at her for a while lying in her underwear thinking how sexually attractive she looked. He pushed hard on her shoulder and got no response so he continued to remove her underwear.
* * * * *
Judy woke the next morning with a bad hangover. She was aware that she'd had intercourse and thought she could feel Kenny's naked body next to her. She turned to look at him but it was not Kenny.
"Shit!" She shoved him to wake him up. "What are you doing here? What the hell's going on?"
"You invited me back last night."
"No, I didn't, I wouldn't." She looked at the clock. Nine o'clock. "Get dressed and get out of here. What have you done?"
"Don't you mean what have we done?"
"Get out, just get out. If Kenny walks in he will go crazy."
The lad hastily dressed and looked back as he left the bedroom. "I'll see you then, Judy. Best not say anything to Kenny."
"Go, just go." When Judy heard the street door slam she got up and sat on the side of the bed with her hands across her face. She looked down and saw a used condom lying on the carpet. She felt as if she were about to be sick and rushed down the stairs and out to the kitchen. Knowing she would not make it to the outside toilet, she was violently sick into the kitchen sink.
* * * * *
At work, Rachel pulled Judy to the side. "The girls are talking; some of them were on a bus into town and saw a young man leaving your house while Kenny was away. They have started to draw conclusions. I told them that he was a plumber fixing your sink but I don't know if they believed me."
"Tell me who is spreading the rumours and I'll go and sort them out."
"No, Judy. That would be like admitting it. Best to just ignore it until they have something else to gossip about."
"Tell me who it is."
"No, Judy, I can't."
"I thought you were my friend but obviously you're not."
"There's no need to be like that."
"It's you, isn't it? You're the one spreading rumours. Did you set me up; I know you fancy Kenny."
"Of course I didn't. Kenny's a mate, I've known him a lot longer than you have and to say I set you up is just childish."
"Well, I am beginning to think somebody did and if I find out it was you, you had better watch your back."
"Don't bloody threaten me. I'm on your side you know. It's not my fault you can't keep your knickers on."
Judy flew at her, got her in an arm lock around her neck and they both fell to the ground. Judy grabbed her hair and began bashing her head on the ground. The other factory girls rushed over and pulled them apart.
The supervisor had been watching them from her office and came running over. "Are you all right, Rachel?"
"Yeah, I might need a headache tablet though."
"Go to the first aid room and have a sit down and a hot drink." The supervisor looked at Judy. "My office, Judy."
They walked into the office and the supervisor stood behind her desk. "I can't have violence in the workplace."
"She started it," Judy said.
"I saw it all from the office window. You launched a vicious unprovoked attack on her. You better hope she doesn't involve the police. I am going to have to ask you to get your stuff and leave."
"Are you giving me the sack?"
"You gave yourself the sack."