Prince Everhart still frequented the night clubs on a regular basis, he was a party animal and found it easy to make friends with almost anyone.
One evening he'd been at the Crypt O'Night Club earlier then headed to Midnight Flows. Curiously, for the weekend the place seemed kind of dead, in his opinion, although eventually a few more people drifted in around 11 o' clock. And that night he met someone who was certainly different from anyone else he'd ever encountered. Prince was at the bar having a discussion with Elsebeth, the bartender, when he got this strange creepy feeling at the back of his neck. He was quite attuned to anyone following him as a rule. Turning around he found a sinister looking fellow dressed up in tails and a luxurious cape lurking over him.
"What's up, my man? You got a problem?" Prince was both belligerent and friendly. Things could go either way he surmised. The man said in a heavy Slavic accent,
"Good evening. Allow me to introduce myself. I am Count Floyd. (With a tip of the hat to SCTV and Joe Flaherty--Author) I am one of the undead and I live only by night."
"No shit? That's pretty heavy. Well, I can relate; I'm pretty much undead myself; love to party through the wee hours most nights. And I have trouble with insomnia now and then, too. But what the hell, I always say the action doesn't start until after dark anyway. Can I buy you a drink? Maybe a beer? Or are you the Margarita type?"
The count seemed taken aback and wrinkle his nose in distaste,
"I don't drink.....beer..." then he looked around eagerly, "But who is this Margarita and how can I meet her?"
"Oh, man, you're a crackup, Count. You must be from out of town. I didn't mean a girl, I meant the drink. You know, alcohol? If you'd like to meet some chicks, though, I might happen to know two or three, but I'd have to give them a call first..."
"Chickens you say? I don't care for livestock. But what kind of women do you know?"
"Oh, just your average red-blooded American types with bodacious racks and loose morals. Why? Are you partial to a certain type?"
"Red-blooded is good," the count seemed to approve but then frowned, "Although I wouldn't want any that had been on the rack, no, definitely not. Just very pretty women with a lot of red blood will be fine."
The count smiled and for a moment Prince thought he'd seen a flash of something that looked like fangs. But that was ridiculous of course. Probably the guy just had a slight overbite or wore a dental plate that was slipping.
Before long Prince and Count Floyd were yukking it up as though they were old friends even indulging in some rock-paper-scissors.
He seems like a nice guy, even if he's kind of stuffy and formal, guess that comes from being royalty, Prince mused on his way home. But if he wants to charm the women that I know he should be ready to spend the big buck and definitely stock up on denture adhesive. Of course he does have a foreign accent and chicks really love that.
It was about time to get in touch with Katharine Burb again, Prince decided the next day. Possibly he should end his affair with her--he didn't want to get caught up with any woman for long, but she was attractive, classy and interesting and had once loaned him some money when he was struggling long ago. He'd paid her back with interest but he still felt indebted to her. At least he hadn't tired of her yet which was almost a record.
He called her up to plan a dinner date for that night at Midnight Flows. Then he went downstairs to make himself some lunch. He had no idea that at that very moment Katharine's husband, Josh Burb, was passing by his house.
Josh had begun to get suspicious that his wife was having an affair. He wasn't the sharpest crayon in the box, but it was finally sinking in that something had to be going on. She was gone often lately and didn't say where she was going, not coming home until late. Whenever she was on the phone and he came in the room she ended the call.
Finally, determined to get at the truth, he began to pay attention to the rumor mill. To this end he only had to hang around the local restaurants and stores and the community center. The name of one bachelor kept coming up and it was Prince Everhart. So Josh decided to check out his place. It looked to him like the home of a player and Josh went home to think things over and after a bit he began to stew. Then Katharine came downstairs dressed in a low-cut leopard skin dress that looked spray painted on and had the nerve to say she was going out to meet her girlfriends for supper and a movie. She gave him a tepid kiss on the cheek and left. Inwardly Josh began to seethe and then...to boil over.
When Prince arrived at Midnight Flows Katharine was already there and told him that her husband was working in his greenhouse and would be there for hours.
"At night?" he was skeptical.
"Of course, often that's the only time he can do it and there are lights and heat in there. Don't worry," she assured him.
"Honey, I never worry. You are the married one; not me."
They ordered and Prince selected a wine. His taste, he knew, was not as impeccable as his brother, Perry's, but he managed well enough.
Conversation flowed, although neither one of them talked beyond surface matters and that was as usual. No discussion of their dreams or plans and neither of them ever brought up family. Their usual pattern was after an evening out (or many times while slow dancing) any discussion consisted of their mutual assurances that they soon would be demonstrating their lust for each other. Then they always headed to Prince's house to have their fun and games.
On this occasion, however; things did not go as planned. Their food had just been served when they looked up to see Josh standing near the table. His face was contorted in fury and he was breathing so heavily that he was almost panting. Still dressed in his sweatshirt and work pants he appeared out of place but it was obvious he didn't care. Suddenly he burst into tears, looking pitiful and Katharine got up from the table telling him she could explain--that it was all a big misunderstanding. Prince was in shock. How could she possibly explain this? Surprisingly such a thing had never happened to him before. This was the first husband he'd ever met. Of course it was not exactly a "proper introduction".
As Katharine launched into a long story full of lies and excuses, Josh moved closer, interrupting her to castigate her for her infidelity and cruelty. He brought up the subject of their daughters, especially the youngest two who were in high school. How could she do this to them? When Katharine refused to even look apologetic and would not admit any wrongdoing even as she was caught with her hand in the cookie jar, something snapped and John bitch-slapped her silly. Prince still sat there with his mouth hanging open as though he were only a spectator in this little drama.
Katharine began crying and Josh rushed out of the place. She gave her husband a dirty look as he left and Prince finally came to his senses. He went to her and hugged her,
"Might as well face it, honey, we are so busted."
"It'll work out I'm sure, Prince darling," she replied, wiping her eyes, "I've always been able to bring Josh around."
All Prince could see was D-I-V-O-R-C-E and a painful vision of himself falling off a cliff.
"And if it doesn't," she went on, "At least I'll be free and we can be together all the time."
"Yeah...together...all the time," he said morosely. Okay, this is where I get off.
Katharine didn't know it yet but her grand affair was a thing of the past. Prince had zero interest in romancing a single woman, nor in being half of a "couple". He'd been up front about that with Katharine from day one. But evidently she hadn't believed him or figured she could change his mind when the time came. It wasn't to be so.
Prince had no way to know that Katharine's husband finding out about them was saving his neck from prosecution...for the moment. Meanwhile, his relationship with Katharine was history. Even though his parents had brought him up to be a gentleman he'd fought it all the way. Self-preservation was his motto now. Don't hurt anyone if you can avoid it, but if you can't...