The enigmatic and infinitely knowledgeable Detective Robert Goren is the very model of an eccentric genius. A six-four giant with a knack for getting confessions out of suspects, his personality amounts to a wondrous cluster of tics and compulsions. He speaks in an odd combination of stutter and fluency and often comes off as a psychopath masquerading as a detective rather than the brilliant, slightly unhinged man he really is. He is ornate and complex. An intense, intelligent and intellectual man, he's made barely controlled gesticulation into an art form.

Detective Robert Goren, where he lies on the couch sleeping off the effects of too much alcohol, is at absolute peace with the universe. For Mike Logan, owner of the aforesaid couch, nothing could be further from the truth.

How Goren comes to be sleeping on this dark blue couch is a long story. It involves a collar, a confession and Barek suggesting - innocently enough, or so Logan thought at the time - that they go out to celebrate. The suggestion was met with wholehearted approval from all sides, and before Logan could blink twice he was seated in an Irish pub knocking back beer after beer with his partner and the dynamic duo of Eames and Goren. The girls swiftly proved they could drink anyone under the table, and Logan sat by in awe as Goren proceeded to consume vast amounts of alcohol and remain mostly coherent. Eames wheedled her way out early, claiming she wanted to go see her nephew before she became totally knackered, and Barek followed shortly after with some inane excuse about an early-morning date the next day.

Which left Logan, who was by then still mostly sober, with Goren. If Goren ever tired of being a detective he could easily become a tailor with his skill for spinning yarns, Logan mused, watching the other man entertain half the bar with a tale concerning a vintage car, a chainsaw and a probably mythical psychotic ex-girlfriend. He had reached what was likely the climax of the story when Logan decided he'd had enough.

"Bobby," he said, leaning forward. "You've had enough."

The crowd around Goren groaned in dismay, and the man himself looked bemused. He gestured to the ten or eleven beer bottles on the table and the cluster of empty shot glasses. "Come on, Mikey," he said, slurring his name ever so slightly in what struck Logan as the most adorable way. "It can't be time to go yet."

Logan checked his watch. "It's nearly eleven." He stood, realizing that the only way to get Goren out of the bar was to do it himself, and plucked the last half-empty bottle from the detective's left hand. "Come on. Get up."

Goren stood, swaying a little, and nodded genially to his captivated audience. "Sorry I can't stay to tell you the rest." He took a few steps, then frowned and looked down at his feet. "Mikey, I don't think they're paying attention to my brain."

Logan bit back a snort of laughter and slung one of Goren's heavy arms around his shoulders. "I'll take you to my place," he said, slapping money down on the bar for their drinks and heading with his wayward companion to the door as best he could with two hundred and thirty extra pounds wrapped around his neck. "It's about a block from here. You live across town - I don't think I trust you to take a cab home, you'd probably pass out in the backseat..."

"I'm not drunk," Goren said, stumbling slightly over an irregularity in the pavement. "To be drunk means to be sufficiently intoxicated with alcohol to the extent that mental and motor functioning are impaired."

"And this is not impairment of motor functioning?" Logan's knees buckled as Goren tripped again and he managed to straighten up only with difficulty. "Bobby, you're falling down all over the street."

"Details, details." Goren's hand gripped Logan's shoulder tightly as he made a concerted effort not to weave too much. "How much do I owe you?" he asked, his words running into each other. "For the drinks?"

"Forget it," Logan told him more roughly than he meant to. In the near distance he could see the steps of his apartment building, the towering structure looming over them in a welcoming way that gave him the warm fuzzies. At eleven o'clock in the night, the streets of Manhattan were not where he wanted to be. "We're almost there."

"My hero," Goren mumbled with what could have been inebriated sarcasm.

Logan practically threw the detective up the stairs. "Try not to make the entire place smell like beer, will you?"