Here is this week’s Queer Tango. I hope you enjoy reading Tracy’s story and trying her accent! As always, please excuse typos.
Episode 34: Tracy’s Tamtastic Tango
Tracy was a modest sort. She came from a family who’d been well-to-do. Her father had been a bit of a toff and her mother had been as posh. Her sister was toff through and through and owned several businesses in the city. Tracy, as the youngest, felt like she’d stuck out well and proper. She’d never gotten how to eat with more than one knife and fork; had spent more time with the staff who came in to cook and clean, and her love of cigarettes wasn’t seen as ladylike.
In school, which had been a posh one, she’d been stuck with the likes of her sister and other kids who played lacrosse properly without threatening to use the stick on their opponents. Her teachers had called her stupid. That’s right. They’d not bothered with their posh five plus syllable words then, no, they’d laugh at her and call her stupid.
This had bothered her when she’d been a small kid but then, when she’d reached a good height, she’d taken to telling the teacher they were even more stupid and gluing their bums to their chairs.
That’s when she’d found herself in the ‘naughty kids’ school.’ Her mum had hired someone else to take her because she’d been disgusted. She’d hired Liza of the Bumblethorpe taxis in fact which is when she met her real sister, her kin, her true bestie… Tammy.
Oddly, Tammy had walked to school ‘cause her mother, Liza, had told her if she was gonna be naughty, she could be cold and wet walking to school. Fair enough, Tammy’d told her, she could pass by the shop and nick some sweets for the journey.
Naughty school was alright. The kids were as likely to nick the food in the canteen as she was and nobody minded a good fight at breaktime. When one of the new teachers, in his pristine white shirt, told Tracy she was stupid she’d felt that familiar sense of anger. Right, she’d thought, sorting him out would be fun. So, she went looking for something to tie him to his chair because they didn’t have glue in the naughty school. Then she ran smack into this buxom girl with red hair pluming out of her head.
‘Alright?’ Tracy said feeling the immediate sense of connection.
‘Alright?’ Tammy said complete fascination in her eyes as she yanked a skipping rope from a broken cupboard. ‘Want a piece?’
‘Fancy tying up Mr Green and pelting him with ink?’ Tracy said, taking the rope and feeling her heart lift at the grin on Tammy’s face.
‘Don’t just use ink, let’s use permanent ink, yeah?’ Tammy said and held up a marker she’d pulled apart, sucked the ink from and already added paper too so they’d be perfect for throwing.
‘I love you,’ Tracy told her without any hesitation.
‘Good, I love you back, let’s sort out his shirt,’ Tammy handed her some pellets. ‘But I kiss boys.’
Tracy snorted. ‘You do?’ She’d been to a posh girl’s school.
‘Yeah. I been kissing this boy whose mate just got done for nicking the guttering off the school roof.’ Tammy winked at her and grabbed her hand.
‘Why’d he nick the guttering then?’ Tracy asked feeling oddly drawn to the boy whoever he was. Sounded adventurous.
‘Dunno, think he thought it was copper?’ Tammy led her into the classroom nodded to one of the boys who shut the door with a snigger as Tracy started toward him with the rope.
Yes, those days were full of fun as Tammy and Tracy tied up teachers, pelted others and Tammy taught her how to pick open a vending machine to steal the Snickers bars. The only periods they separated for were: when Tammy got done for stealing the headteacher’s car and planting it in his swimming pool—she had to go to the young offender’s institution for that one, where she met Colin—and when Tracy got done for burglary when she broke into Trevor’s house (when he was still married to Ceri) and nicked his flash new computer—she got sent to prison for that one.
She didn’t much mind it, it was sort of naughty school but for adults and she had her own TV. Her parents didn’t much bother with her by then and her sister pretended she was an only child. Then when Tracy was in offender’s rehabilitation—which was funny more than rehabilitative but she did do a law degree for free inside so she went with it. Anyway, she was in rehab and this fit bloke just strutted in and smirked at her and Tracy knew she was in love for the second time, but this time she fancied the kissing bit. Ricky.
‘Alright?’ he said as he took a seat beside her for the ‘removing motivations for crime,’
‘Alright?’ she’d said feeling her heart thud. ‘Fancy pelting the tutor with ink?’
Ricky grinned. ‘I got permanent ink, I just nicked from the store cupboard.’
Tracy held out her hand and, like Tammy, he’d made them perfect to throw.
They’d had some fun during rehab so it wasn’t surprising when Tammy married Colin and she married Ricky that their boys were as tight friends as they were. Colin was meant to be a tyre fitter and Ricky was sort of one when he wasn’t working his nightshifts.
Tammy’s three kids followed her and Colin perfect but Tracy’s boy, he weren’t gonna go down the naughty route. He was by-the-book, did his homework, passed his exams and didn’t so much as drink. Shocking, that’s what Ricky called it, but you see he’d been inspired by Ricky’s uncle—Paulette’s dad—who’d taken him on a tour of a police station as a boy.
So, it was a bit odd that her parents and sister had shown up for the class dress rehearsal and had bonded with Liza (Tammy’s mum) over biscuits. Colin and Ricky were in attendance as were Tammy’s naughty boy and two girls and even Tracy’s son, in his civvies, was sitting next to Paulette’s dad looking like a pair of coppers would if they were in a squad car together staking Ricky’s stash location out.
Tammy fanned herself then munched on her Snickers. ‘Colin wearing a proper t-shirt… he let me iron it and everything.’
Tracy nodded. ‘Ricky washed his own joggers so he’s wearing new.’ She rolled her eyes. ‘Dunno why he thought grease remover went in a washing machine.’
Tammy chewed on her bar. ‘Did he get you a new machine?’
‘Yeah, he nicked one from the store Trevor has shares in in Sludgeford.’ Tracy checked her hat as the music started and Tammy ditched her snickers and hurried over to the other side of the stage.
The lights faded up and they both stepped out onto the stage.
‘Alright,’ Tammy said as she held up an ink pot.
‘Alright,’ Tracy said as she held up a ruler to flick ink with. ‘You gonna help me take on Stanetta to stop him luring Hedges away from the company?’
‘Yeah,’ Tammy said, glancing at the audience then sucking in a breath. ‘I got permanent ink that’ll do just the job.’
Tracy smirked then did her ‘dance bow’ before striding over and taking Tammy into hold. ‘Perfect,’ she said with her best stage voice. ‘Then let me show you how we can sort out Stanetta.’
‘If we’re gonna sort him out with dance… what shall we call it?’ Tammy asked pretending she was really smitten.
‘It’ll be our dance. A dance of friendship and ink, a dance of how you helped me to feel happy in my own gold cap tooth,’ Tracy lowered her into a pose to ‘oooh’s’ from the crowd. ‘Tracy’s Tam-tastic Tango.’