London. Life.

“It’s ages since I’ve been to a pub quiz!” said Kellen, arriving back at their table with the round of drinks.

“I know, right?” nodded Charlie, helping Kellen to distribute the pints of lager around the table. “Did you know that this pub is owned by Ian McKellen?”

“The actor?” asked Marc.

“Obviously…” confirmed Charlie. “Are there any other famous Ian McKellens? I’ve heard that he’s sometimes here for the quiz.”

“No sign of him tonight…” decided Hamish, carefully surveying the crowded bar. “I’d never have guessed that he’d be into quizzes.”

“Actually, that doesn’t surprise me…” said Kellen. “I can totally imagine Gandalf being a quiz lover.”

“Sorry I’m late!” apologised Tim, squeezing his way through the crowd to find their table. “Has it started yet?”

“Not yet…” confirmed Kellen. “No drama, I got your text. Here’s your pint.”

“Stupid meeting ran late…” explained Tim, stripping off his coat and scarf. “I couldn’t face the tube at this time of night so I jumped in an Uber.”

“You didn’t try Geezer Cabs?” grinned Hamish.

“What?” replied Tim. “Geezer Cabs? Are they new?”

“No, you know - Geezer Cabs, the video?” explained Hamish. “You wanna bit of London in ya? Billy Essex?”

“None of that makes any sense to me…” shrugged Tim.

“We obviously watch very different porn…” sighed Hamish. “I’ll send you a link. You can thank me later.”

“You didn’t want to bring Stephen Yao tonight?” asked Charlie, turning to Marc.

“You don’t have to say his full name every time…” sighed Marc. “I know you don’t approve. You’ve made yourself passive-aggressively clear.”

“Stephen’s a very common name…” shrugged Charlie. “I just want to be clear which Stephen I’m talking about. Anyway, it’s irrelevant what I think of him. He’s your boyfriend. I was just asking why you didn’t bring your boyfriend with you to the pub quiz. Asian guys are very good at quizzes.”

“Now you’re just being racist!” exclaimed Marc. “If you must know, I did ask him but he was out last night so he decided to give tonight a miss.”

“The Jerry Hall rule…” nodded Tim.

“What’s the Jerry Hall rule?” asked Charlie.

“Jerry Hall has a rule that you shouldn’t go out two nights in a row…” explained Tim. “That’s how you always bring your A-game to whatever you’re doing.”

“That’s ridiculous…” dismissed Charlie. “But if Stephen Yao is Jerry Hall, that means Marc must be the Rupert Murdoch of the relationship!”

“I think he’s more the Bryan Ferry of the relationship…” decided Tim.

“I will not Marie Kondo this conversation!” exclaimed Marc.

“Pay attention…” hissed Kellen. “It’s starting!”

“Category is - Entertainment!” announced the quiz master. “What do these five names have in common - Kimberley, Sarah, Nadine, Cheryl, and Nicola.”

“I didn’t think I was going to know any answers…” grinned Charlie. “I didn’t realise it was a gay quiz!”

“Technically, that’s not a gay question…” said Marc.

“Oh, please!” laughed Charlie. “There’s not a gay man alive who wouldn’t know the answer to that!”

“You’re showing your age…” winked Hamish.

“That’s homophobic!” exclaimed Charlie.

“Guys! Concentrate!” insisted Kellen. “We could win this!”