The Sycophant – Part Five: Mary Ann

Cruella grinningCatch up here – Part one – Introducing The Players

Cruella took my boyfriend out in fine style. I couldn’t complain because I was invited, remember? Lover Boy and I were on the thinnest of thin ice.

“She’s really sorry you don’t want to come, Elsa. She says she’d have been happy to try to get a third ticket. We’re going to be in the second row. Blah, blah, blah. Bunch of VIP’s. Do you know how difficult it is to get a ticket to the blah blah? Any ticket, I mean, never mind the second row. I just can’t turn her down. She just can’t seem to find a date. She hates to go alone and you never know who you might meet at an event like this. It’s an opportunity…”

I barely responded. He knew what I thought and I was tired of fighting about it. I’d have told him to piss off but we were meeting Mary Ann the following night and I just wanted to know some things. I wondered things.

I wondered how Cruella felt about Mary Ann and vice versa. Lover Boy reported everyone was a friend but I figured that meant nothing. Did Cruella know we were socializing with Mary Ann independent from her? Was she in the dark or had she orchestrated the whole thing?

And what’s the deal with Mary Ann’s husband? No one seemed to talk about him much. Would Lover Boy and Mary Ann reveal their secret passion for each other? I was wondering these things, aren’t you?

It’s hard to maintain reality when all around you, it’s denied. Cruella and Lover Boy had a tango but said they didn’t and this kind of thing hurt my head. I knew this was a situation that had to be transcended but I had not come to the point where I could do it.  Mary Ann was the reason why. She was the last bit of info I needed and here is what happened on Saturday.


Saturday came. We showed up and I learned nothing.

Really, Elsa? Nothing?

Yes. Nothing.

funt allenLover Boy and Mary Ann sat next to each other and talked shop. Work stuff. I could not believe this. No scandal, no jokes, no secret love affair. Are you disappointed? I was. I wanted a refund! What the hell am I doing in this sucky movie, anyway?

They were not even talking about people, they were talking about inventory! They were talking about where invoices were filed. How could this be? What did I get dressed for? For this? I looked around for Alan Funt and his Candid Camera. I pouted.

I glanced at Mary Ann’s husband. We were on each side of the chirping co-workers. He was a big guy, burly and he didn’t want to talk to me. He gave me cues and I respected them. I didn’t especially want to talk to him anyway. Nothing personal. I’d just had it with this whole crew.

I debated making a drama scene. You know. Walking out or something. Making a speech. Someone needed to spice up this script, right?

I even thought about leaving through the restroom window. I wasn’t serious, I was just seriously bored. I was entertaining myself the best I could and I was hoping wandering like this would prevent me from inadvertently rolling my eyes. Because that would be rude and I can’t be rude, I have Libra. ::rolls eyes::

I’m sure I laughed out loud at my own thought. Maybe they thought I was crazy but at this point what possible difference could it make? And I could hear my friend, Ben, talking in my head. He called Lover Boy, “Your Gigolo”. Ben, the gay Scorpio.

“See? What did I tell you?”, said Ben’s voice, remotely. “I told you there was not going to be anything under that rock but did you listen? No, you didn’t. You just had to go see for yourself. Do yourself a favor, Elsa. Next time your friend, Benjamin tells you something, you should pay attention…”

I couldn’t really believe this was this stupid. Or maybe it was just a last ditch effort,but I looked again for a Lover Boy / Mary Ann bond. I looked high and low but I just didn’t see it. I scrutinized and what I saw was an attentive, Lover Boy.

This really was his gig, you know. He existed to serve women. Whatever they wanted he delivered and he delivered in spades. You should have seen him charm the hell out of my mother. And that ain’t easy, you should try it some time. Credit where credit is due.

Mary Ann? Well she was just talking to him. She was talking to a co-worker and having an evening out. She was pretty, she was pleasant, she was non-threatening and Ben was right. She was a bore. He’d bet me you know. And now I owed him a bowl of soup!

“Elsa! They’re boring people, that is all. This is how boring people are. They bore you. I don’t know why you are wasting your time. Haven’t you ever met anyone who was boring before?”

“Well, no I don’t think I have,” I said. “I’ve never been around anyone boring.”

“Well that explains it. Let me save you some time. I’ve met boring people. I’ve met lots of them and this is how they are. They’re all the same. You must really like what your gigolo can do for you and that much I can understand. But you’re wasting your time with the rest of these people. You’re waiting for boring people to do something interesting. It’s never going happen. So now that we have that cleared up, are you coming over today? If you do I promise not to bore you. You’ve had plenty of that. I think you’d do well with a change.”

Eventually the evening ended. The bar closed, that’s why. We had closed the bar and I don’t even drink. Yeah, I was twenty-three, but still. In my entire life, I don’t think I had ever had a more NOTHING evening.

It was one am when we said good night in the parking lot. Lover Boy and I drove home. We went to my apartment, getting in about one thirty. I guess I better end this relationship, huh? Is tomorrow soon enough? I decided it was. I was too wrung out at the moment. I just didn’t have it in me. Boring people are exhausting to be around. Have you ever noticed that?

old telephoneLover Boy spent the night. I didn’t care, I was glad. I liked sleeping with him. Don’t ask me why, I just did. I slept easy with him. I slept happy. I slept bliss with him in the bed, it was just one of those things.

Six O’clock, Sunday morning, and the phone rings. Excuse me, but what the fuck?


“Elsa? Elsa? This is Mary Ann. I got your number from Cruella. Is Lover Boy there?


“My husband is dead.”

‘Uh…Mary Ann? Mary Ann? He’s here. Here he is.”

I put the phone in his hand.

Her husband was dead. It was not a joke. She’d just found him in the shed with a bullet in his head.

Skip to Part Six – Hey Hey Bo Diddley – Stop!

23 thoughts on “The Sycophant – Part Five: Mary Ann”

  1. MY GODDDDDDD!!! For being so boring, they sure as hell were entertaining.

    “It’s hard to maintain reality when all around you, it’s denied.” THIS. Is so true. Thank you for that little line. You’ve just explained the last 28 years of my life. Now I can stop blaming myself.

  2. OMG!!!! I did NOT expect Mary Ann’s husband to commit suicide.. wow… how tragic.. I realize this is not a fiction story which makes it that much more intense amidst your ability to make me laugh! Can’t wait to here what happens next.. I’m on the edge of my chair..

  3. Whoa!! I could’ve sworn I’d read this story before, but I must’ve missed huge chunks of it, cuz I don’t remember that part!!

  4. Okay…I remembered Cruella…but I don’t remember this twist! And I often feel like an island of reality in a sea of denial in my husband’s family. And of course, I’m an annoyance because of it.

  5. Elsa! What are you doing writing for a blog? You should be writing for Hollywood or something – you have quite a talent!!

    Well that was quite the unexpected cliff-hanger!

  6. Hee, more on this quote, I hit post too soon:

    My mom has a psuedo-boyfriend who is married. They do NOT have sex, and I believe they do not have sex because she never wants to. But both of them will bullshit you up the wazoo about how platonic they are and gee, why can’t people of different genders be friends and hold hands in the movie theater? If you saw them together, you WOULD think they are a couple, period. There is vibe all over the place. But la la la, it doesn’t exist and it’s platonic…only because he married another woman and claims he doesn’t feel sexually towards my mother.

    The denial of reality just gets OLD after awhile. God-for-fucking-bid someone point out that platonic friends don’t cuddle like that (unless they live in Berkeley), they will deny it up the wazoo.

    1. l remember sharing a bed (only a bed) with a gay guy l called him Chuck. He had five planets in Capricorn. The son of a Baptist preacher in The States. It was the best, deepest sleep l have ever had. Like sleeping with an angel. l felt rejuvenated. We were great friends for a long while…then he decided he couldnt have straight friends anymore. It was political thing and during the time of that other plague HIV/aids. l did go with him to hospital. l was the only one not in a bubble-suit, mask, gloves…

  7. Even though I’ve read this before and have been waiting for this part, the dramatic twist, it still gave me chills.

    Good stuff, gooood stuff. 😀

  8. Captivating writing! Hooked and went through the previous chapters but was about to comment how anticlimatic the situation turned out to be, really felt the dissapointment in ‘I dressed up for this’, but apparently not, someone died. Wondering what’s the sun sign of Cruella. And why she is a cruella, I know being boring is a crime but is it on par with skinning puppies or if something is really awry with her. Lover boy had no business going to the woman and telling her about you thinking whatever about them. I disliked that play-part among them but everyone has an ego to feed, even a beastly in bed scorpiOh man.

    1. I wrote this many years ago, when I was writing stories all day and all night. I didn’t give anything any thought. There was a supportive audience at the time, begging for more, so I just wrote another story. I mean, someone said, “do you have another story?” Well, I met this sycophant once… want to hear about that? They always said, yes. Next thing I know, I typing as I would talk.

      There’s nothing considered here. I probably wrote this story in forty minutes.

      To me, she was Cruella, but how I see that character can be different from how you do. There is more to this story. When it was written, it as almost interactive. For example, someone wanted to hear about Lover Boy’s interaction with my mother so I wrote that. Everything is organic, nothing is planned or contrived. I just start telling a story and to do that, I tell it but with my ideas and opinions and perceptions.

      This gal was Cruella to me and I don’t know her sign, because I never cared about her one iota. I did spend a lot of time with Lover Boy, on a daily basis, thought the relationship did not last long. I mean my mother called with a problem and he came with me to take care of it.

      My mother was enamoured with him and had me climb on the roof to get the limb that had fallen on it, off. He was going to do it, but she didn’t want him to get hurt, lol. “Don’t hurt yourself. Elsa can do it.”

      Really, this was an interlude. That’s what I called these short vignettes. They were side stories, told between larger stories… some of my stories are 100 pages long or more.

      Anyway, I was never careful. My story, told my way.

  9. Yes, of course. I hyperfixate on small stuff sometimes so thought she could have done something else, besides the obvious ones. Well I hope there’s an update to the story or other stories as well. The content is vulnerable, dark or plain infuriating (can’t get over that dude and his stupid commentary on the necklace) but your delivery is fun, fresh and breezy, so it’s interesting to read. And lol at mom being so smitten and protective of him haha.

    1. This gal matched the mannerisms of Cruella…as pictured. The attitude. I never considered why I chose that name.

      Come to think of it, my husband and I used to watch the cartoon Dalmatians as teenagers. I used to sing him the siamese cat song. “There in no finer cat than I am!”

      anyway, we were the dogs in love in that movie and Cruella scenes annoyedme, so there you go. that’s the root.

      That necklace guy; well the astrology is very interesting in that story. My schema.

      1. Well the name Cruella is deserved. I only want to say this and don’t care if it sounds weird but it feels good knowing there is such a story out there. Not the Disney one, the one of you and your husband. You weren’t together your whole life so that must mean something. I’ve seen such a horrendous divorce (thought it was gonna turn into murder) and deaths inside married couples- literal and metaphorical, chronically unhappy married people or widowed, – where the more content people were more or less alone romantically but with many friends and hobbies or partenered but not married so that obviously clouds my sight regarding this aspect of life but yes, just wanted to say that.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top