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The Warm Pink Jelly Express Train (.pdf)

By Rod Fleming

The Warm Pink Jelly Express Train reveals what happens when two worlds collide, as a tough, hardened news man falls under the bewitching spell of a passionate, beautiful woman like no woman he has ever met before, and they embark on an blistering affair that sets everything on fire.

Brian Macmaster is a successful career journalist recovering from a painful divorce. He has taken lodgings in a seedy hotel in Paris, which he discovers is the haunt of gangsters, whores, and an endless stream of clients. One night in the bar he meets a very beautiful young transwoman from Brazil called Rafaela de Vargas.

Despite his great initial reluctance, as he gets to know Rafaela better, Macmaster finds himself increasingly attracted to her. Not only is she beautiful, she is engaging and he enjoys her company. This confronts him with a dilemma: how can he, a conventional, heterosexual man, relate to a pre-operative transsexual woman?

After much soul-searching, Macmaster grasps the nettle and begins a sexually supercharged affair with Rafaela; but while she is absent, plying her trade as a prostitute, he suffers intolerable anguish and jealousy. In time this leads to a confrontation with Rafaela’s business partner AnnaMaria Schiavetti, who gets him drunk and seduces him. She threatens Macmaster that if he does not behave she will tell Rafaela what has happened.

Macmaster begins to spy on Rafaela; he realises that this is a betrayal of trust but tells himself that he only wants to know what she is doing, to make sure she is safe, not to interfere.

He soon discovers that Rafaela and AnnaMaria are providing controversial sexual services to politicians, diplomats, and businessmen, including senior members of the French Government, from a discreet bordello in a middle-class suburb. He realises that he has inadvertently placed the girls in very grave danger because he is personally known to several of the men. He is convinced that they will take drastic action if they find out that one of their whores is involved with a very well-known foreign journalist, a detail about himself that he has kept from the girls.

When he begins to suspect, with good reason, that AnnaMaria has been filming her clients in order to blackmail them, and indeed that she has filmed him, with Rafaela, Macmaster realises that his true identity may already be known, and decides to act without delay. After tipping off a friend at a Parisian news agency, he stages a scene at the bordello, firing a pistol and attracting as much attention as he possibly can.

Macmaster is knocked out and arrested, but the apparent shoot-out at a transsexual brothel and pornographic film production set, in a respectable neighbourhood, involving a British journalist, hits the top of the news schedule. This gives him the few days’ breathing space that he needs.

He secretly arranges for his friend James Connolly, a publicist, to get the girls to safety and sell their story. He himself faces prison for his actions at the bordello. However, he persuades the prosecutor investigating his case to drop the very serious charges which are initially threatened, and instead he agrees to plead guilty to a range of minor public-order offences.

When he is released from prison, after serving eight months, Macmaster is a wiser man. Unsure of how he will be received, he tracks down the two girls, who are now living quietly in Italy. Rafaela has become much more calm and reflective. She is financially secure, having received a share of the money from the sale of the story. She has given up prostitution and is studying at college, making plans for her future.

Happily for Macmaster, he figures in them.

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