It was a cosy scene indeed inside the radio studio. The 'Radio - Live' light cast a warm reddish glow over the three heads chatting away into their respective microphones as the program neared its end. After chuckling heartily at the last answer given Bob the Bobbinator said "Well, Jorth, it's been a real pleasure to have you in today, and to hear all about your attempt to win gold in the Knitted Dress Marathon in these, the 2012 Crafting Olympics." Turning to his co-host, he inquired "Any last questions for Miss Jorth, Jean-Luc?"
"Mais oui!", answered Jean-Luc, who had been in suspiciously good humour all day long. Fixing Jorth with his smirking countenance, he asked "Do you foresee any events which may possibly derail your medal ambitions, mon cherie?"
Jorth looked back at him, a mite confused. "Er, none that I can think of. You know, I'm just focused on getting out there, and giving 110% percent. I've got my head in the game, and my blinders on. Nothing can keep me from Olympic glory - well, except maybe new yarn. Joke! Joke!"
"Good girl!" said Jean-Luc. Wagging his finger at her he said "Keep those blinders on - we don't want any distractions on the home straight!"
"No indeed", concurred Bob. "Thanks for popping in today Jorth, and to all the listeners at home - keep on crafting, folks!" He hit the play button for the finishing music, and then removed his headphones, giving his belly a good scratch as he did so.
Jorth stood up, and collected her things. Hoisting her knitting bag over her shoulder, she said "Thanks ever so much for having me in today, fellas. I've never been on a radio show before - it was so exciting!" Turning to Bob, she quickly embraced him and said "If you ever need a guest again, give me a call!". As he chortled away she moved to Jean-Luc and said "It really was a pleasure to meet you, Jean-Luc. I know that the fields of macrame and knitting can be sometimes viewed as competitors, but you have really opened my eyes to the art and skill involved in macrame. That belt you are wearing is the most amazing textile piece I think I've ever seen. Don't tell me you made it yourself!"
Jean-Luc had no issue about swallowing her flattery whole as he believed every word she said, being in possession of quite a healthy ego. "Of course I did - who else could create such intricate knots, and position the beads just so?"
"Only you!" answered Jorth with a smile, doffing an imaginary hat. "You truly are an inspiration!", and with that she enveloped him to in a long, lengthy hug, taking the opportunity to caress the beaded fringes of the belt. Jean-Luc, dirty bugger that he was, took the opportunity to snuggle his pelvis in as close as he could, and was not at all pleased when the embrace came to an end.
Suddenly Jorth glanced at the clock on the wall and exclaimed "My word - check out the time! I must dash - so much more knitting to do. See ya, fellas!" and with that she flew out the door. Jean-Luc, too, began to make moves to leave. Pausing only by the door to examine his reflection in the mirrored surface he sighed "Ah, such a jolie femme! I do hope that nothing comes between her and her goal. You know how distracted these knitters can be when faced with new yarn. I do hope she really was joking about that."
Bob glared back at him. He had not been at all pleased about the post-interview snuggling that had gone on. "I dare say Jorth knows what she's doing. I wouldn't be too worried about her", he stated with quiet rancour.
"Of course", said Jean-Luc as he left the studio, smirking at Bob one final time. He marched towards the exit, but instead of turning left to head home, as he usually did, he turned right, and walked down the street, past all the nice cafes and gift ware shops, continuing along until the tenor of the street changed from sweet suburban street to bleakly lit danger alley. This was the part of town where druggies regularly stuck their hypodermic needles into doors for fun, and if you ever went there after dark and didn't get assaulted with a broken bottle whilst being solicited by a pimply underage whore whilst treading in a sludge of fecal matter whilst being vomited on by a drunk then you could consider yourself relatively unscathed, and with nothing decent to brag to your friends about.
Jean-Luc, however, obviously knew this neighbourhood well enough, and had taken care to cover himself and his ludicrous macrame belt with a big black coat, the collar of which he turned up as he entered a bar. He walked over to a grimy table in the darkest corner, and ordered a triple port. Before his drink arrived, he was joined by a geeky looking young man, with stained tracksuit pants on, a t-shirt that might once have been blue, and filthy looking dank blonde hair. Squeezing his considerable girth into the corner seat, he introduced himself as Hansel: full-time hacker and snoop, part time crafter.
"Let us make this quick" said Jean-Luc, glancing around the mostly empty bar for prying eyes. "I need you to hack into the system of Jorth's favourite yarn store, and send out an email from them declaring that all yarn for the next week only will be 50% off. Can you do that for me?"
"Easy!" huffed Hansel. "Do you reckon she'll fall for it?"
"But of course" replied Jean-Luc with disdain. "You yourself knit, do you not? Would you resist such a sale?"
"No way!" said Hansel. "Rowan and Debbie Bliss and Noro at half price? I'd be there as fast as my chubby legs could carry me!"
"In which case you may miss the sale." said Jean-Luc coldly. Ignoring Hansel's wounded look, he said "So this is the deal - you send the email, and then spy on the yarn store until Jorth arrives. Knitters can never resist a sale, she will be there for sure. Then you take pictures of her making her purchases, and send them to me pronto. I want to luxuriate in the evidence, safe in the knowledge that her Olympic marathon will be sent off the rails as she is distracted by her new, cheap knitting projects."
"Hang on a mo" said Hansel. "We haven't discussed payment yet. This is a tricky job to pull off - I'll need to be hiding away in camouflage if I'm going to get those pictures, and I want to be properly paid for that."
"Oh, do not worry, my grande friend." said Jean-Luc, smiling slyly. Putting his hand into his coat, he withdrew a sleek shining case, and waved it front of Hansel's eyes. "Would this, perhaps, do as payment for your troubles?"
Hansel gazed at the case greedily, and moaned delightedly "The Addi Click Interchangeable Needle Set, featuring 10 different Addi tips, three gold cords and the connector, all packaged in a soft black case which is fastened with the Addi Heart Pin!" Reaching forward to grab the case he squealed "I'll take the job!"
"Not so fast, sausage fingers! Mon Dieu, control yourself. You shall get your prize when I get mine. Do we have a deal?"
"Deal!" agreed Hansel fervently, looking disappointed when the case disappeared back into Jean-Luc's jacket, and the jacket and it's owner stood to leave.
"Excellent!" said Jean-Luc over his shoulder as he left the cafe. To himself he muttered as he strode down the street "All I have to do now is wait for Jorth to take the bait."
His patience was rewarded when two days later he answered his mobile phone, and heard the breathy tones of Hansel inquiring "Do I get extra Addi circulars for being stuck in a tree for the last 8 hours?"
"Depends." replied Jean-Luc.
"Well", panted Hansel, "I think I should because from my leafy position I took some freaking awesome pictures of Jorth buying up big in the yarn store, and she even cast on some navy blue Debbie Bliss Cashermino DK whilst still in the shop!"
"Then, you rotund crafter you, say hello to your new Addi needles. And Jorth, you can say goodbye to your Olympic campaign!" crowed Jean-Luc. Hanging up on Hansel, he began to dance around his room, delighting in the fact that he had pulled off his scheme. If he had any qualms at all about ruining her chances to make it into the history books, they did not show as he jazz-hands about with glee.
The 2012 Crafting Olympics - Part 1
The 2012 Crafting Olympics - Part 2
The 2012 Crafting Olympics - Part 3