As Brian lit his cigarette, Aleck asked, "Where are Phil and Maureen?"

"They took a walk."

"Bastards. After they were 'too tired' to come to my place and help carry the music!"

Brian, who had himself refused to go, said, "I suppose."

"Let's set it up." Tom and Aleck squatted by the baseboard. Brian returned to the couch.


Aleck queried. "Do your fuses still blow?"

"I sincerely doubt it." Tom laughed. "Phil put a shilling in the fuse box. He tried to get me to do it, but I wouldn't. Then he almost electrocuted himself. Maureen and I flipped out, but he didn't think it was funny."

Aleck was concerned. "What if he'd killed himself?"

Brian interjected, "It didn't happen. Be careful not to think about it."

"Maybe you're right."

The door resounded with steady frenzied battering. "Open up! Forgot my key! Open! Open! Open!"

"There's Phil." Aleck answered the door.

Phil towed Maureen into the room. "Hello, hello, greetings all. I'm very glad to see the phonograph--hook it up, Tom!--and dear Aleck! Filthy Maureen has lost our spots. Don't suppose you brought some, what?"

"No. All I have left is blue caps, anyway."

"Don't want a blue cap tonight, do I? Must keep functioning. Man sees nine kilos together but once in this life." Phil squatted, pulling Maureen down beside him at the phonograph. "Here I am to help. Phil requests orders. Sir!"