A fight with Dennis and Dee as a team and Charlie and Mac as a team rarely worked in Charlie and Mac’s favor, obvious if one ever looked at Charlie and Mac’s CharDee MacDennis game pieces. It was especially unhelpful that Frank was asleep in the back office, he said he was crashing from a Molly binge. Charlie had been missing Frank at the apartment the past few days, hearing about his escapades with Artemis helped explain where he was.
Charlie and Mac were being storming out of the bar as Dennis and Dee shouted at their backs, they definitely would lose this debate. But Charlie already stopped caring about it. When he and Mac stepped into the sunshine, Mac was shouting a game plan at Charlie, one that Charlie couldn’t care to listen to. He wore a wide grin.
“Dude? What the fuck? Are you even listening to me? Don’t you want to prove those assholes wrong?”
“I don’t care about that anymore, I think we should take a ride and clear our minds,” Charlie said as he took his hands out of his pocket, waving the key-ring he was pinching between his pointer finger and his thumb at eye level.
“Shit dude, keys to the Range Rover?”
“Hell yeah, keys to the Range Rover! Dennis just kept on talking and yelling and talking and yelling, and I couldn’t keep listening man, he’s annoying, but he was distracted. So I took them,” Charlie answered, sporting a proud grin.
“Alright, let’s go! Where we goin’ bud?”
“I don’t know, but we gotta go quick, before Dennis realizes they’re gone,” he said, dropping the keys into Mac’s unexpectant hand.
Despite Mac’s badass, cat-like bodyguard reflexes, they fumbled from his fingers and fell to the ground. Mac and Charlie both leaned down to grab them, bumping heads hard enough that their teeth clinked together inside of their respective mouths. Mac grabbed the keys and the two of them rubbed their heads, laughing, as they walked to the Range Rover.
“Alright, man, let’s do this up,” Mac said, starting the car. “Let’s go on a road trip!”
“I don’t know man, you know leaving Philly only leads to bad shit.”
“That’s not true, we’ve had fun leaving Philly! Remember the shore? I got to dance with sexy guidos and you like date raped the waitress?”
“I didn’t date rape her! I didn’t even bang her! It was just like a magical evening of sunsets and ocean treasures!”
“See? A magical night! Why don’t we go to the shore? It can be magical!”
“That’s the gayest thing I’ve heard you say since you came out,” Charlie laughed as he picked up Dennis’ CD case, thumbing through the different titles as Mac ignored the road, typing away on his phone to set-up the GPS.
“Yo, dude, you gotta keep an eye on the phone for me,” Mac told him. Charlie hummed indifferently, still looking through the CDs.
“For real, I don’t know how to leave Philly.”
Charlie groaned and popped in a CD that looked like science and Holland Oates started singing. He then grabbed the phone and put it in his lap.
Charlie gave them a few misdirections, driving around the block three times, every time ending up in front of the bar with a chipper, “We’re here!”
The third time, Dennis caught sight of them as he walked out of the bar. Dennis came running after the Range Rover and Mac sped up, blowing a stop sign and scraping against a double-parked car. It wasn’t until then that Mac caught on to what Charlie was doing, ripping the phone out of his hands, dropping it into his lap with a dramatic sigh.
“Sorry man, I just like, woo!” Charlie said, putting his window down, sticking his head out of the window. “I just hate leaving Philly, even if we’re going to a magical town, we’re gonna have to pass some dangerous towns in between.”
“Charlie, man, we’re gonna be on the turnpike the whole time,” Mac said, glancing down at the phone momentarily. “We’re not even gonna see the shitty towns in between.”
“Okay, you sure man?”
“Yeah, I’m sure, bud, we’ll be good.”
“What about bathing suits? I don’t have my bathing suit!”
“It’s cool man, they got a bunch of stores down their, we’ll pick one out!”
“I don’t think anywhere’ll have as aerodynamic of a racing suit as the one Frank got me!”
“Dude, you don’t need a racing suit for the beach.”
“I definitely do man, you gotta be aerodynamic against the waves!”
“I don’t think you do.”
“Whatever, if they don’t have one, then I’m not swimming.”
“Suit yourself man, I’m going for the guidos anyway.”
“So what, you’re gonna find yourself a hot dude and ditch me?”
“I didn’t say that, I just…” Mac trailed off as he slowed down at the toll plaza, grabbing a ticket from the machine. “Shit dude, do we have any cash for tolls?”
“I didn’t bring any cash, I didn’t know we were going to the beach!”
“Shit man, uh, well, we don’t have to pay yet, right?”
“No, no, not yet.”
“Okay, whatever, move past it. Back on to those guidos.”
And then Charlie and Mac discussed the type of man Mac would be searching for at the beach, while Charlie praised the fact that the waitress would not be there this time, as she was getting on his last nerve in Philly. Then they praised the things they wouldn’t have to deal with at the shore that they always have to deal with in Philly. No Dennis controlling their every move, no confronting their past traumas, no worrying about Frank galavanting about, no fighting with the gang or with each other (because they rarely fought without the influence of the gang). No stress at all. Just two bros and the beach. Charlie didn’t even freak out when they crossed a bridge, he was immersed in their conversation, as was Mac. They changed Dennis’ CDs frequently, sometimes insulting his musical taste, sometimes singing along at the top of their lungs. They laughed a lot.
When it came time to pay the toll, Charlie shouted to Mac, “That sign says that’s the easy way! Go that way! The blue one!”
“Oh shit man, you’re right, E-Z Pass!” Mac said, and as neither of them really understood how anything worked, they followed the sign, allowing a camera to take a picture of Dennis’ license plate and send him far too high a bill for the tolls in the mail.
After that, it was fifteen minutes of cruising, the hour drive had flown by.
“Oh shit man, is this it? Is this the beach?” Charlie said, lowering his window down to stick his head out the window as they passed a small body of water, the bay.
“I don’t think so, buddy,” Mac laughed as they kept driving. “But let’s find a hotel, we’ll check in first.”
“Oh shit, if we don’t have cash, how are we going to check in.”
“I have one of Dennis’ credit cards,” Mac shrugged. “We’ll put it under that. I mean, we already stole his car.”
“You know what, that’s a great plan!” Charlie agreed with a grin.
“Isn’t it?” Mac asked with a laugh, “But we’re gonna have to pick somewhere kinda sleazy, I don’t want them to check my ID.”
And so they did. They drove a bit closer to the ocean and found the sleaziest motel they could find, who accepted the credit card and ID without cross referencing them because the check in person did not care one bit. Asking what kind of room they wanted was a struggle though.
“Okay, so one room, double or king?”
“Double? We don’t want two rooms!” Mac protested.
“Yeah, yeah, but I’m not king! I need a room for a commoner!” Charlie shouted over Mac.
“Sir, I’m sorry, but do you want-”
“Dude, just give me the best bang for my buck! Give me what the guidos get!”
“I’m sorry, sir, so do-”
“Just do it!” Mac and Charlie shouted in unison.
“Alright, alright!” The clerk shouted, nearly throwing their keys and cards at them when the transaction was finally processed. He shouted at them, “Room 247, go!”
“God, what a dickhead,” Mac said too loudly before they finally exited the office.
“I told Dennis! I told him that people outside of Philly suck! Why doesn’t anybody ever believe me? Philly’s the only-”
“Charlie, people in Philly suck too, don’t get all paranoid again, let’s just have fun.”
And they walked side by side to the room, excited for a weekend of two bros and the beach.