In the bowels of the Bellagio, the new Archbishop of Canterbury refused to play his hand. His whisky remained untouched and his eyes stared past the undulating bodies of beautiful teenage dancers. Perhaps he struggled to withstand the lures of the flesh and thought about God and Jesus and stuff, or perhaps it was just all the chloroform he’d recently been forced to inhale.

‘Ratzinger, you fucking pervert!’ screamed the Dalai Lama, his face flushed red above his orange robes. The chatter of the room died down to watch the former Pope Benedict XVI walk into the top-secret gambling room.
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For Jack Vening who wrote this story in a dream of mine and now I’ve stolen it.

Liam Payne’s hair felt like fibreglass. He kept turning clockwise instead of anti-clockwise while practicing the last verse of ‘What Makes You Beautiful’. His pants, a kind of beige chino, matched Harry’s and Niall’s, but not Zayn’s or Louis’. He wondered if that meant something.

“Tonight is going to be off the hook” repeated Zayn, emphasizing the word ‘off’ harder and deeper than the rest of the twenty times he’d said the same thing.

“Man, performing with Justin Bieber. Our lives, huh. Bieber.”

Harry Styles reclined on a velvet couch and smirked at Zayn.

‘Isn’t he, I dunno, a bit passe? He’s probably grateful for a chance to perform with us. Be cool, Zayn.’

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