At the airport in Sydney I sort out currency then get a cab to the hotel on the itinerary. They won’t let me check in, my name not being on the reservation which is frustrating. Again they have no rooms. I use their wifi to find a room, Tom’s advice echoes through my head and I get a private room in a backpackers. I leave a message at the hotel front desk letting Alexander know where I am and leaving my new number.
I get a cab and check in to my new place. I try calling Sal, she doesn’t know of any schedule change and is worried too as Alexander is meant to be working this afternoon. She promises to get in touch once she hears from him.
I shower and change and head down to the common room and look at the activities board. I may as well make the most of my time here. I go to the zoo, seems like a low key fun thing to do. I message Alexander pictures in the hope the cute animals get a response.
On the way back I hit a supermarket the idea of cooking my own dinner after weeks of eating out really appeals. I make steak and salad and sit with a bunch of English guys to eat. They tell me of their adventures in Thailand they’ve been travelling for months and I talk about where I’ve been. They invite me to join them on a night of drinking and I accept.
I call the original hotel but they won’t tell me if he’s checked in. I worry about whether he’s using his own name or not. So frustrating.
I get ready for the night out and join the guys.
We visit a bunch of bars and after a few drinks I start to loosen up and have fun.
“Mate you’ve turned down a lot of hot girls already.” Sean one of the guys says.
“I’m gay and I have a boyfriend.” I say, at least I think I do.
“Fair play more pussy for me. Keep em talking next time though, be my wing man.” Sean says.
I laugh and agree.
We move on to another bar and a Green day cover band is playing. We jump around like idiots and enjoy the show. A few girls ask for my picture, I agree, seeing no reason not to.
“What’s that all about?” Spencer one of the other guys asks.
“My boyfriend is famous, we’re sometimes pictured together. I guess they recognise me.” I say.
“What’s your last name?” Sean asks.
I tell him and he starts to look me up. I feel a bit embarrassed, Ii just want to be Peter normal student not boyfriend of Sandy Green. Maybe I should have lied but I like these guys. I remember how moody Alexander would be when he was hiding his identity and begin to understand a bit more of his choices.
“Fuck me, is this you?” Sean asks.
“Let me see.” Says Spencer.
“Yeah that’s me. Nice welcome your country gave me.” I joke.
“Shit do you have to testify in court?” Sean asks.
“No our statements were enough and they have the video and loads of other evidence.” I say.
“Cool. So you’re dating a movie star? Where is he?” Spencer asks.
“Who knows. I lost him in Japan and he wasn’t on the flight here.” I say and explain the rest of the story.
“This calls for shots.” Sean shouts. We’ve moved to the bar since the band ended.
“These are on you.” Spencer says and I nod laughing.
We drink and drink until the early hours. We have a great time. Neither of the guys has any luck with the ladies but they seem happy enough trying. I wish Alexander was here but then it wouldn’t be quite so relaxed. I love being in a normal place with normal people. Somewhere along the line I’ve grown tired of the VIP life.
We stagger back to the hostel.
I message Tom to thank him for his suggestion and ask if he’s heard from Alexander. He replies asking for a dick pick, which i send in my drunken state. He replies with his own telling me he hasn’t heard anything.
“Want to come to the Blue Mountains with us tomorrow?” Sean asks.
“Sure, you going to hike off the alcohol?” I ask.
“Something like that. We’ll knock when we’re ready, in a couple of hours though. You be alright on no sleep.” Spencer asks.
I nod and stagger to my room.
Unsure of the time difference I try Sal again but it rings out. I collapse face down on my bed and sleep until the banging on the door wakes me. I shower and join the guys. We get the train and snooze on the way, it’s a really pretty journey once we get out of the city.
We have a really fun day. I have no cell reception which makes me worry less. We hike and visit sights and have a good laugh. It is great being able to do this with people my age and outlook. I almost forget the shit I’m in.
Later that evening we’re drinking wine from a box in the TV room and during the ad breaks an interview with Sandy Green is trailed for the local breakfast show.
“Hey mate is that show filmed near here?” Sean asks an Aussie guy who is watching with us.
“Yeah by Darling Harbour.” He replies.
“Let’s go down in the morning and get your man back.” Sean says.
“Yeah okay, I can at least leave another message down there.” I say.
“Operation Alexander is in business.” Spencer says.
“You guys really want to do this? We’ll have to go early.” I say.
“All part of the adventure mate.” Sean says.
“Yeah we want to meet you fella to tell everyone at home we are friends with a Hollywood movie star.” Spencer says, only half joking.
I laugh and we arrange to meet early the next day.
We walk down to the TV studios, there are some fans with signs outside already.
“Shit we should have made signs.” Sean says.
I start asking around if they think he’s arrived yet. No one thinks he has. I go over to the building reception and ask if I can leave a message. I’m laughed at. I try showing pictures of us together but I’m escorted out without them looking at them.
A car draws up and I hold my breath as he gets out, at least he’s alive and well. Actually he doesn’t look at all well.
“A!” I shout.
“Alexander, I’m here.” I try louder.
“Alexander!” The three of us shout together before security jump in front of us and block our view. Alexander doesn’t even look up.
“Shit.” I say as he’s bundled inside.
I look around for Phillip but I must have missed him. I approach the driver who seems to be waiting to drive them back after.
“Excuse me can I leave a message for Sandy?” I ask.
“Don’t be daft, I’m not bothering him with shit from nomarks like you.” The driver says.
“I’m his boyfriend, I’m not just anyone.” I say.
“Yeah and I’m the pope.” The driver says.
“Aw mate come on look, here they are together, he’s not some random.” Sean says showing a picture from the day in the park.
“More than my jobs worth.” The driver says.
We sit down on the side of the road and contemplate our next move.
“Thanks for coming down, it was worth a shot. How about I buy us all breakfast and we try and catch him on the way out.” I offer.
“You don’t have to buy us, but yes please I’m starving and broke need to get a job soon.” Spencer says.
“Will you work out here?” I ask.
“Yeah we’ve working holiday visas, we’ll work here for a while and then head off to South America once funds are replenished.” Sean says.
“The do the same in New Zealand before Asia again.” Spencer says.
“Sounds amazing.” I say.
“We like it. We’re just delaying real life. We though a break after a million years of study was required.” Sean says.
“Yeah we’ll go home with life and work experience and ready for our years of drudgery.” Spencer says.
“Wow. I can’t imagine taking that sort of break. I’m going to finish school and hope to go straight to grad school.” I say.
“Madness.” Sean says.
“Utter madness.” Spencer nods as he stuffs his face.
“I have another idea.” Sean says.
“Go on.” I say.
“The premiere is tonight right? We show up at that with signs, get his attention and then spring you on him.” Sean says.
“Worth a try, if it works I’ll get you into the after party.” I say.
“Woo then I’ll meet a supermodel.” Spencer says.
“I should be on the list for the film but I don’t have an invitation and after the hotels I expect Phillip will have removed me anyway.” I say.
“Come on let’s go and get supplies for the signs, we’ll need to go early to get a good spot.” Sean says.
We buy pens and poster board and head back to the hostel. Loads of others want to help and join us and once done we head down to the cinema where the premiere is being held. There is already a barrier up and a few people there, some of those we saw that morning.
Apparently Alexander was bundled straight into a car when he came out and no one got to meet him or much of a picture.
We make a party of it, eating fast food, telling stories and generally hanging out. No one seems to feel like they’re wasting their time. They tell me it’s like a rom-com and they just want to see a happy ending.
Finally the press arrive and some local celebrities. I try and talk to some of the photographers hoping they might know who I am and pass on a message when he gets there but they’re not bothered about Sandy just about the local soap stars wearing revealing dresses. Frustrated I return to my friends.
The he arrives, he walks the press line and we start to shout for him and wave the signs. He smiles and begins to walk over. Phillip sees me and glares and tries to steer Alexander away but he ignores him and heads over.
Sean gets Alexander’s attention first and gets a picture I wait for a moment then push forward.
“Babe.” I say.
Alexander gets a grin a mile wide and moves to hug me. All he guys from the hostel start cheering and taking our picture.
“What’s all this? Where have you been?” Alexander asks.
“We thought this would get your attention as you’ve ignored everything else.” I say.
“Get over here. I want you on my arm. I don’t like this barrier.” Alexander says.
“Sure but these guys need to get on the guest list for the party.” I say.
Alexander waves one of the PR girls and explains. I hand her a list of names Sean has already written out.
She smiles and leaves us. Alexander poses for a few more pictures with my friends and then helps me climb over.
The second I’m on the red carpet I’m dived at by security, then thud.
I wake in severe pain in hospital. Alexander is asleep in a chair next to me.
“Babe, baby. What’s going on?” I croak, finding my voice barely works.
My head is killing and so is my left wrist which seems to be bandaged. I feel like shit.
“Oh my god you’re awake. Don’t move, I’ll get someone.” Alexander says pushing the call button above my head.
“What happened?” I ask barely able to whisper.
Alexander just shakes his head, crying, not able to speak.
A nurse and doctor come in and start checking me over, asking about pain and if I know who I am and where I am.
“I really hurt, my wrist is burning and my head is throbbing. I feel like I was hit by a bus. But I don’t think I’ve lost my mind. I remember up to Alexander helping me over the barrier and then it goes blank.” I say.
“You were knocked out at that point and the thug not content with beating you and trying to crack your skull he decided to stamp on your wrist too. You need surgery to repair the damage. We were waiting to see if you wanted to be patched up here enough to go home or if we should do the operation here.” The doctor says.
“I don’t know. Here sounds best. I’d worry too much on the flight of damaging myself. Is that okay?” I ask Alexander.
He nods, still crying, not talking.
“Will my insurance cover it?” I ask suddenly very worried.
“Don’t worry about that baby.” Alexander says suddenly finding some words.
“We want to keep an eye on you tonight you’ve been in and out for a while. We’ll deal with your wrist tomorrow. I am very, very sorry this happened to you.” The doctor says.
“Am I allowed some water?” I ask.
The doctor nods and Alexander jumps up and pours some from a jug on the side.
I drink a little, unable to sit up properly.
Once the medics leave I look at Alexander and grin.
“Well this fucks up our holiday plans. I can’t swim with a fucked wrist.” I say laughing.
“I am so sorry. What happened? Where have you been?” Alexander asks.
I motion for the water again and Alexander feeds me a few sips.
“In Tokyo I had to move hotels, they checked me out while I was out sightseeing. Did you get your bags okay?” I ask.
“They chucked you out?” Alexander asks incredulous.
“So I found another hotel room and left you a million messages, I tried Phillip and Sal. I was so worried when you weren’t on the flight, I thought you might have been in an accident, I wasn’t sure if I should stay or go. Then I got here and the hotel wouldn’t let me stay, saying I wasn’t on the reservation. I left a message for you with my number and where I was going.” I say.
“Phillip said you’d gone home for a family emergency but when I rang your Mom she said everything was fine. I didn’t get a message at the hotel. I lost my phone during filming. I didn’t know how to get hold of you. Then we missed the flight and came out a day late and I’ve been so busy. I’ve been calling every hotel in the city trying to find you.” Alexander says.
“I came to the TV studio this morning but they wouldn’t take my note and neither would your driver. The guys had the idea of doing signs at the premiere.” I say.
“Then I got you hurt. That fucking idiot. He knocked you out then stamped on you. I punched him good.” Alexander says holding up his swollen hand.
“I hope you’re not in trouble for that.” I say.
“I don’t care if I am. Oh Peter I have missed you so much. I can’t believe none of your messages got to me. I don’t understand the hotels not letting you in.” Alexander says.
“Phillip wants you all to himself. We got him wrong. He’s efficient but hates me.” I say.
“He’s an idiot if he doesn’t realise the way to get me onside is to keep you happy. Oh baby are you in a lot of pain? Your head bled so much, your hair is ruined from where they fixed you.” Alexander says.
“Shallow. It was too long anyway. It hurts, everything hurts. Why did he go for me, given you were helping me and I should have been on the damn list anyway.” I say.
“I don’t know. I didn’t stay around, I came in the ambulance with you and I’ve only spoken to your mom and the staff here.” Alexander says.
“How long can you stay? Are visiting hours over soon?” I ask.
“I don’t want to leave you.” Alexander says.
“What about work?” I ask.
“I’m cancelling everything here. You are my only priority. I’ll do a press call if I have to but I don’t really want to be seen in public. I’ve emailed Sal.” Alexander says.
“Wait, did you call Mom, tell her I’m here?” I ask.
“Yes, you best call her yourself now you’re awake.” Alexander says.
I do. I play down how I feel and how bad my wrist might be.
The nurse comes back in.
“The police are here, are you up to speaking to them? They need to take pictures of your injuries too.” The nurse says.
“I’m not sure I can get up.” I say.
I tell the police all I remember and they take some pictures of my head, back and wrist.
The nurse assists them, making sure I’m not hurt too much. She redresses my head as the police leave.
“You really need to leave now, it is long after visiting hours.” The nurse says.
She leaves us to say goodnight.
Alexander kisses me gently and squeezes my hand.
“Love you baby. So, so much.” Alexander says.
“Can you bring my phone charger tomorrow and a toothbrush? My room key is in my bag. You can go there and stay in my room if you like.” I suggest.
“Not fancy but smells of you?” Alexander asks.
“Less likely to have photographers hanging about.” I say.
I’m slightly relieved when he’s gone. I feel awful and the talking took a lot out of me. It was hard to hold it all together with him here. I also feel huge relief that Alexander is okay and still loves me.
I’m prodded and checked over frequently through the night. The pain is fairly constant that prevents much sleep anyway.
If my head is okay I’m going to be operated on in the morning. I guess I won’t see Alexander again until afterwards. I hope he’s okay and not blaming himself too much. I really missed him the last few days and the thought of seeing him tomorrow cheers me up.