The cutting room floor

It seemed the perfect final year project. They’d be able to do it unscripted, which suited both Blaine and Ethan. And it fitted the fascination with all things seedy that had brought them together. An afternoon trawling the internet identified the sordid side of dating. Suburban sleaze. Perfect. They could infiltrate the scene, shoot the footage hand-held and pull it together in the editing suite.

They signed up to a ‘discrete adult parties’ website. To christen the project they took a camera to the mall and bought new disco outfits. Back at their flat they celebrated with wine, snuggles and Teen Zombie Killer 3.

The first party was in a warehouse. They arrived separately, in character, circulated until the early hours, then thanked their host, Arlene, a large woman in culottes.

‘You two seem to have had a good time,’ she said

‘I never expected to meet another film-maker,’ said Blaine.

‘Perhaps we could film your parties for you?’ Ethan added

An email arrived. We love your film idea. Let’s talk.

They agreed to put jealousies aside and the project progressed well. After the fifth party they had the footage they needed. Blaine booked an editing suite for Friday night.

‘But there’s a party Friday,’ said Ethan.

‘You’re not serious?’

‘Blaine,’ he said, ‘I think we need to talk.’

2011—Richard Holt / small stories about love (