Monica gets a call asking her to help Bert.
The beeping sound continued. Monica opened her eyes and tried to focus. Looking over at the clock she saw that it was 1:30 in the morning. Her cell phone continued to beep. Kelly rolled over and Kara went on blissfully sleeping. Monica reached over and grabbed the phone.She didn't recognize the number on the display. "Hello" she answered with a yawn."Is this Monica?" a male voice she didn't recognize asked.She rubbed her eyes "Yes, who is this?"The noise in the background of the call was loud and he spoke up "We have never met, I'm Quinn Allman. I'm in the band The Used"Now Monica was totally awake and confused. "OK" she said slowly."I got your number from Brian Schechter. He really didn't want to give it to me but I promised I would just ask you once and if you say no I will understand"This conversation was very confusing, "Ask me what? Does this have something to do with Bert?" she was dreading the answer.Quinn cleared his throat and spoke a bit louder trying to be heard over the background noise. "You could say that. Do you know the Tick Tock Diner?"Monica had heard of the restaurant. It was located in Clifton and had recently enjoyed a burst of publicity thanks to a segment on Food Network. "I have heard of it," she answered wondering just where this was going."Bert and I were in New York and suddenly decided he had to go to the Tick Tock for an egg and cheese sandwich. I went along with the idea mostly just to keep an eye on him. His drinking has been worse lately. Anyway we got there and had our food but then the booze really caught up with Bert. Now he is in the restaurant and will not leave. We have had enough bad press lately and I just want to get him out before someone calls the police. I know that he has been sending you flowers and I thought maybe you could come and talk to him." he hurried on before she could answer. "He is really in a bad way I just need to get him out of there. Could you please help me?"His tone was pleading. "I really don't think there is anything I could do to help. I mean you realize that the only time I really talked to Bert didn't end well."Quinn half laughed "Yea you knocked him on his ass. I think that is why he is drawn to you. You won't take any shit off him. Look Monica I will be honest with you. I'm not sure how much more the record company will take of Bert's shit. He needs help and all of us in the band are trying. But if he gets arrested again I don't know what we will do. I know its not fair to ask you but I don't know what else to do.""I will be there as soon as I can," she said getting out of bed. She disconnected and argued with herself the whole time she dressed. She really shouldn't be doing this. However she knew deep down that she had to try to help. As she hurried to her car and waited for it to warm up a bit she realized she was grateful to have the cell phone. Going out at this time of night in her old car she just might need it.The ride to the restaurant was swift and thankfully uneventful. Her car chugged along and made it without incident. Even at this time of night there were several cars in the lot of the retro silver and red diner. She walked through the door and saw Bert immediately. He was at a back table smoking with his eyes closed.A handsome blond man got up from the same table and walked over to her "You must be Monica. Bert talks about your long brown hair all the time"Monica rolled her eyes. "How much has he had drink tonight?"Quinn looked sheepish, "It is hard to watch Bert all the time. Something set him off earlier in the evening. I think it was a phone call from his home, I'm not sure. After he got off the phone he stared drinking hard.""I'm not sure what you think I can do. He might not even remember who I am. I only met him once.""If we can just get him to leave without making a scene I can get him back to the hotel. I tried earlier but he said he would make a huge fucking scene if I touched him." Quinn looked upset and very tired.Monica shook her head and walked towards the table where Bert sat with his eyes still closed. "Bert you need to leave now" she said sitting across from him."Fuck you" he answered then opened his eyes to gaze at her. He blinked several times then smiled "Monica how nice to see you" He looked at Quinn "how did you manage this?" his words were slurred."She agreed to help me get you the hell out of here" his band mate hissed. "So will you leave now if she asks you?'Bert laughed loudly making several people glance over to their table. Monica realized several people recognized Bert and Quinn. This was not good. "If I don't leave are you gonna hit me?" he asked Monica"I'm sorry I hit you Bert. I was just trying to protect Donna from what you were saying. According to Gerard I didn't need to bother. That it wouldn't have surprised her."His tone turned ugly "Oh is that what Gerard said? Well it must be true then. The golden boy wouldn't lie"Quinn tried to calm him "Come on Bert lets go back to the hotel and get some sleep.""Fuck that, I like it here" he closed his eyes again and leaned back.Monica lost her patience "You know you are acting worse than my teen-age daughters. Now stop acting like a shit and do what your friend says. God you are like dealing with a five year old."He opened his eyes and tried to focus on her. His mood swiftly changed "Ah Monica don't be pissed at me. I got enough people who think I'm a shit.""I won't be pissed if you come with Quinn and I" she started to stand but his arm shot out and pushed her back down."How about I leave if you give me a kiss?""Bert you are such an asshole" Quinn told himBert just laughed. "Maybe but that's the price that must be paid for me to leave" He smiled that crazed look he is known for.Monica sat and stared at him. She began to speak when her phone peeped. The display read Gerard. Oh crap not now. Bert was watching her "Aren't you gonna answer that?"She pocketed the phone. Talking to Gerard right now wasn't a good idea. She needed to get Bert out of here. Several people where whispering and looking in their direction. "OK Bert one kiss then we leave. We leave with no theatrics. You just stagger out of here and go with Quinn. Agreed?"He smiled "Yep that sounds good". He moved closer to her but she stopped him."Stand up first so I know you are really going to leave" she told him. He smiled devilishly and stood on his second attempt. Monica rose from the table and moved closer to him. With speed that surprised her he grabbed her and she was enclosed in his arms. His lips captured hers as he bent her back over the table. There was a gasp from the other diners and Monica realized that they were a spectacle. She shoved with all her strength against him and pushed him off balance. He simply smiled at her. "I'll leave now" he staggered towards the door with Monica and Quinn following in his wake.Once outside Quinn got Bert in the car then walked over to Monica who was standing by hers. She was shaking with anger. "Monica I am so sorry." he began but she shook her head silencing him."It's not your fault. I really should have expected it." She got in her car "tomorrow tell him to expect to be knocked out again" She backed out of the parking space before Quinn could answer.When the alarm went off she had had only two hours of sleep. In the kitchen Donna had the coffee ready. "You look really tired" she handed a cup to Monica.Monica really didn't want to talk about last nights adventure. She nodded and took a sip of her coffee. Her cell beeped. It was Brian. "Monica I just got off the phone with Gerard. He sent me a photo that was on the Internet and I am sending it to you. When you get here we can talk about it." He hung up before she could say anything. The photo came through. Monica couldn't believe her eyes. It was a photo of her and Bert from last night kissing. One of the other customers must have had a camera phone. She dropped the phone on the table.