Not for the first time, John considered dumping the other man. But an image of Charlie, his dirty blond hair sticking out everywhere and his eyes still slightly clouded from sleep, rose to his mind. And again, John remembered that night, two years ago, when he had pretended to sleep and Charlie had poured out his heart. And that was why John would stay. Because even with all this Goddamn fucking around, he knew Charlie cared.
John called Charlie who gave him the location of his latest hangout, another bar. This one was a bit nicer then some of the others; it opened onto the main street instead of a dank alleyway. And inside, it was surprisingly pleasant. There was a warm atmosphere, and the people inhabiting it seemed to be there because they wanted to, not because they didn't have anywhere else to be. The bartender was smiling as he served his patrons, and even conversed with some of them.
John scanned the room for his (boyfriend? lover?) whatever Charlie was to him. His eyes traveled over couples cozying in booths, groups of friends laughing about something, and a couple of men trying their luck with some bored looking women. John scowled when he realized that Charlie was not among them, naturally. Well, he did text directions to a bar named MacLaren's, so he was most likely here earlier. Maybe the bartender would know.
"Hey, you seen a guy, 'bout 5'11" an' kinda chubby, with blond hair an' brown eyes?"
"Yeah, he was here earlier. Think he went to the bathroom or something," the bartender answered.
John thanked him. Ordering a beer, he stayed at the bar and kept his eye on the restroom door while he worked out what he should say.