11 December 2000
All the staff at The Firm plus clients and friends are gathered for the annual Christmas knees-up...
Pratchard: I say Tom, do you remember last year? The shindig at Pizza Hut. I'm glad we're not doing that again!
Henderson: I should say so. It cost a fortune. Although to be fair, £6,000 of the overall bill was in sexual harassment suits filed by the staff. Over the years, Jean in accounts has made £465,000 out of these Christmas parties. Anyway, I think this year's venue is both cheap and delightful. It's just a shame we have to be out by 7.30.
Pratchard: Well, Mrs Pratchard needs the sitting room back. She'd flay me alive if she missed Corrie. Anyway, Happy Christmas Tom. I got you a little something.
Henderson: A bottle of Imodium. How, er, thoughtful?
Pratchard: Well, I've spotted the amount of trips you keep taking to the toilet during meetings. And when I overheard you on the phone talking about some "seriously bad shit" you'd been having I put two and two together.
Henderson: Thank you. In return old friend...
Pratchard: Oh Tom, you haven't gone to any trouble ...
Henderson: Correct Jack. I haven't gone to any trouble. You couldn't get me some of that delicious looking arctic roll from the finger buffet in the hall? I think Ms Brett from corporate is out there and I'm not allowed within 50 yards of her following that "misunderstanding" last year.
Bickerthwaite: Right then 'Enderson. I'm off.
Henderson: But we haven't even started the games. We've got Pin the Blame on the Paralegal coming up.
Bickerthwaite: Ay, but I told folks in Barnsley I'd be back for Christmas Day. If I'm going to make it I need to get the 16.06 train from Kings Cross.
Henderson: But it's the 11th of December.
Bickerthwaite: I know. I'm cutting it fine aren't I?
Pratchard: So what's Christmas like in Barnsley, Rodney?
Henderson: Good god! You've woken the Kraken!
Bickerthwaite: Hard, lad. It's never a white Christmas - always black. And bleak. I remember once getting a single piece of coal for a present and sitting by the tree thinking it was the best Christmas ever. Although that was mainly because I got to have a go on me brother's new Playstation. Anyway, here's yer present Tom.
Henderson: A whole bag of coal! I'm deeply moved Rodney. I'm not saying you're mean but the last time you opened your wallet the queen blinked. Well I was at a celebrity auction the other day and they had a bat autographed by Geoffrey Boycott.
Bickerthwaite: You didn't buy it for me?!
Henderson: Correct Rodney. I didn't buy it for you. Have fun!
Don McClean (the PR machine): You can share a cab with me Ronald. I've got 16 more Christmas parties to get to this afternoon. I'm like a shark. If I stop swimming - I die. I know what you're thinking Tim. You hired me to do PR for The Firm. But no one owns Don McClean. I've fingers in so many pies...
Henderson: I don't actually remember inviting you to this party, Don.
Don McClean: I'm sorry. It gets so lonely sitting in my bedsit.
Henderson: Well Jack. I don't care what happened last year. I'm going for it with Alison Brett from corporate. Watch and learn. Err, Ms Brett. Did it hurt?
Alison Brett: Did what hurt?
Henderson: When an angel like you fell down to earth from heaven.
Alison Brett: I think someone's breaking their court order aren't they?
Henderson: I just wanted to give you your Christmas present. You're the only one I got anything for - a little something to say sorry about all the institutional sexism. It's a Ferrari. And a house. And did you get me anything?
Alison Brett: Oh, it's nothing really.
Henderson: What is it?
Alison Brett: I just said. Nothing. Now thanks for the gifts but I think 50 yards away is the garden.
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