Disclaimer: I do not own the Boosh, and never will. Damn.

I'm not entirely sure where this came from, i wrote it at school a few weeks ago when i was bored and forgot all about it. found it this morning so i thought i'd put it on here for you people to read!x

"Are you alright, mate?"

Howard looked up blearily at the man who had just spoken to him. He was in a bar, getting as drunk as possible.

On his own.


"M'fine." He muttered, downing whatever was in his glass. By this point he wasn't even sure what it was, just that it burned his throat and made his pain just that little bit easier to bear.

"Are you sure?" The stranger asked, sitting down next to him. "Is there anyone you want to call? You can borrow my phone, if you like."

Howard shrugged, staring into the depths of his now empty glass. "No. There's no one. Not any more. Not since…" he broke off, unable to even say his name.

"Do you want to talk about it?" the stranger enquired, gently.



"No. Not really. I mean, I always…but, no. Just my friend. My best friend…."

"Oh. What…what happened to him?"

"I don't know." Howard couldn't really focus on the other man's face, he was too drunk for that, but he thought he looked concerned, so he continued. "He went out to Topshop a year ago, never came back…" his eyes welled up with tears as the memory of that day returned to him…

"Howard? Howard? Howaaared? HowardHowardHoward…"

"What is it, Vince?!"

Howard regretted his outburst instantly when Vince's face fell slightly. He hadn't meant to snap, it was just that he was having a really bad day. Someone had out-bid him on an online auction for some rare Jazz records, and he was missing paperclip #6 from stationary village.

"Will you drive me to Topshop in the van?"

"What? Vince, I need to run the shop."

"But it's raining. Oh, go on Howard. Please?" Vince arranged his face into the little pout that Howard normally couldn't resist. The Jazz Maverick felt himself waver slightly, but then he shook his head and looked away from Vince. The little electro poof knew exactly how to wrap Howard around his little finger. But he was Howard Moon, man of action! He wasn't a chauffer!

"Cant you just go tomorrow?"

"But the sale ends TODAY. Go on, Naboo's not even here; he'd never know if you shut up the shop for a couple of hours. Please?"

"No, Vince."

Vince glared at him. "Fine! I'll just walk there in the rain. Would that make you happy?"


Vince huffed and went over to the door, grumbling under his breath about his hair.

"Be back before closing!" Howard called after him. "Or I'll come at you like a northern bullet."



When Vince hadn't returned by closing time, Howard felt very annoyed.

When he still hadn't returned by dinnertime, the annoyance became tainted by a twinge of anxiety.

When he still hadn't returned by the following afternoon, that feeling gave way to full blown panic, and Howard called the police.

Howard had expected a lot of people to join in the search for Vince, after all he was very popular. But when the police appealed for assistance, only about 10 people showed up to help. 10. Out of the whole of Camden. Howard supposed that the type of people who dumped you for playing a bad gig weren't the sort to put themselves out when you weren't even there to see it.

He took to sleeping in Vince's bed, breathing in the scent of Vince's hair on the pillows, then he hated himself a couple of weeks later when it stopped smelling like Vince and started smelling like him.

After 3 months of searching, the police had given up. They'd still kept the case open, but they were no longer allocating specific officers to the search. As if this was a cue they had all been waiting for, the few friends of Vince's who had started to help began to give up, one by on, until eventually there was just Howard and Leroy.

It wasn't until Vince had been missing 6 months that Leroy gave up too. "I'm sorry Howard, mate," he'd told him. "But it's been half a year. They've had officers all over the country looking for him. It's not like he's suddenly gonna come strolling down the high street, you know? He's gone."

But Howard couldn't accept that. Vince had to be alive, he'd know if he wasn't, surely? But with every day that passed, a little more hope died within Howard. He was constantly on the move around the country, sticking up posters, appealing in newspapers and on the internet, but no responses ever came in, no sightings ever reported. It was during this time that Howard started drinking. At first it had been easy, he wasn't used to alcohol having never had more than a few pints at a time, so it took very little time to forget everything for those few, blissful hours until the booze wore off.

But as time passed, it became harder and harder to reach the point when he could forget about Vince. So he had to keep drinking more and more alcohol, and he had to drink it more and more often. Now he couldn't even get through the day without it.

Then Naboo had started making the situation worse, going on about how he needed more people in the shop, how they should advertise for a new flat mate. It was as if Vince had never even existed.

"He went missing exactly a year ago this morning." Howard informed the man. He looked over at him, suddenly aware that he was burdening a total stranger with all of this. "Sorry. You don't need to hear about me…"

"No. its fine, honestly." he glanced at his now empty pint glass. "Look, I need to go, are you sure you don't want to call anyone? What about those guys you said you lived with, Naboo or Bollo?"

"No. they don't care. No one cares…" Howard gazed into the distance. Bollo had never really liked him, even when Vince was around. Now Naboo didn't even bother with him. Howard thought he would probably kick him out if he wasn't afraid Howard would do something stupid…

The man beckoned over the barmaid. "Watch him, yeah? Make sure he gets home safe."

Howard felt an absurd rush of affection for the stranger. Not in a way Vince used to say was creepy, the sort that got him featured in the Guardian, but a rush of genuine gratitude. This man didn't know him from a rock in the street, yet he was making sure he would be ok. Maybe the world wasn't such a terrible place after all…

The man looked back at the drunken northerner as he left the pub. Poor bloke… his thoughts were interrupted by a girl grabbing his arm.

"There you are! Come on, we're gonna be late for the psychiatrist. It's, like, a 20 minute drive!"

"Sorry. I got talking to this bloke, about his friend who went missing…"

"Oh. Bit of a sore point for you, yeah?"

"Yeah. Thank you."

She frowned. "What for?"

"Being there for me. The bloke…oh shit, I never even asked his name…that man, he was so lost, so…broken. He had nobody, he just had his memories. When you found me, I didn't even have that. I don't know what I would have done…"

It had been 4 months since he had been found by the side of the road, with no memory of anything that had gone on before. Stacy had been a nurse at the hospital he had been put in, and she had been helping him ever since. He had even moved in with her, now.

She nudged him playfully in the ribs. "Hey, what're friends for? You've got foam in your moustache, by the way."

"Oh, shit." He squinted at his reflection in a car on the side of the road, rubbing his upper lip. He considered his reflection. He was, he thought, almost the exact opposite of that man in the bar. His blue eyes were huge, his nose just a little too large and crooked. And yet somehow, the look still worked. He was constantly getting hit on by women and men wherever he went (less so the men now he had let his stubble grow out and cut his hair. What had been long, black hair had now become short and mousey brown, gelled into cute little spikes at the front).

"Come on, we'll be late!" Stacy insisted, tugging his arm. "Dr. Frisby said you were making excellent progress! I mean, you already remembered your name, didn't you? A few more sessions and you could remember something else!"

"Yeah." It was the only thing he could remember from his old life. Just a name.

"Come on, Howard!" she said, tugging him again. For some reason, his mind jumped to the man in the bar, but he blinked that away.

"Ok, calm down!" he laughed.

The two friends got into their car, and drove away, not looking back.

Not sure this really works, but I hope so. Just a one shot for now, might turn it into a full story if people like it, and I have the time.

Click the review button – you know you want to ;)