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Thank you very much Rosie for the report, and Pics

Rosie Goes to See James at Dragon Con – Party! (Part 2)

Now it was time for both the boys to come round to the tables. James went to the table by the mic first and we got Gareth first!! Have to say – he is a bit of a sweetie - quieter in this situation than on stage, but lovely. We had to keep asking questions to keep him talking – not like James who you just point in the right direction and let him run!. We mostly let the 3 Gareth fans do the talking, cos that seemed only fair. They asked him the name of the only decent pub in Newport (according to Gareth) and the night out with James. They gave him a couple of Blue Gillespie T shirts they had made which was sweet. Poor love was in a bit of pain as he said he had hurt his arse a few weeks before in the gym – had a bit of an accident with the weights, so Lisa got him a stool to sit on instead of a chair! I asked him about what work he had coming up and he said filming Torchwood until Christmas and then he hoped to be coming to the States in January. I got some shots of him sitting there – in his woolly beanie hat despite the heat. He said he found it in his pocket so he put it on – it was made for him by a fan.

Then it was all change time. We had a gap as the next table along had James – he was sitting facing me so I was able to take quite a few shots from where I was. He was just being so animated and enthusiastic…!

It didn't seem very long before James was approaching our table. He sat at the end where Gareth had been so he was across diagonally from me (not that any of us further down the table could have moved if we had wanted to!) Janet had to fix the mic of her audio recorder onto James shirt – not that I was complaining because it pulled it just a bit more open and we got a lovely view of even more chest… (Not that I'm shallow or anything…!)

And then, James being James, he was off an running – saying he had been talking about Helium 3 on the other tables and then went off into full-on Geek James about the different countries that are fighting to go to the moon (I think..!) – He was very enthusiastic, using his hands a lot and using the odd expletive. We must have all looked a bit blank and shell shocked!! (though I adore geeky James) So then we talked about Moonshot – James retold the Buzz story and said he now really understood the amount of crap astronauts have to go through – and also added that he had changed his mind about the caveman vs. astronaut argument – the astronauts would win every time – especially if it was Buzz!!

He loved working with the rest of the cast and the director and felt they really did become a team – became a very close knit unit with the other two astronauts, they would watch each others backs and look after each other. He then told us a story about the monkey on the set ( I assume its to do with the monkeys they sent into space) James didn't like the monkey cos it crapped everywhere on the set – but the monkey handler was about 65 years old and turned up each day with a scantily clad teenager. James said they (the actors and crew) weren't a bit subtle - "who ordered the hooker?" because she was dressed that way. Then they discovered she was 16 years old and she was the guy's wife…! James did a HUGE "bleah" shiver at that one!

And writing this, I've just remembered something else he said after that – in Lithuania, at first the men were really friendly with him and the woman were cold and stand offish. But once he started talking to them, they got really animated and friendly (uh - James – that might just be because it's YOU!) and the men got colder. He then found that the men treated the women like shit, more like a possession and so they were expecting him to be like all the others, and then opened up when they found a guy who would talk to them as an equal and a human being.

One of the Gareth fans as talking about Buzz's punch again and technique and James was disagreeing with her about the technique, and then there was a pause, so decided it was my turn to dive in So I said "ok – now Im going to trivialise things a bit but I have to ask – if you went to someone's house and discovered the place was covered in pictures of you, would you be running away very fast?"

James laughed and said "No – not at all. I'd be cool with that. Hell, I used to have Leonard Nimoy all over my room!" to which I replied – "oh good, so I don't need to take all the pictures down before you come round!" and he grinned.

Then Janet caught his attention (she was sitting on his left) but it was to do with the mic, so whilst she was fiddling with it, I asked "James, are you going to wear that shirt for the photo ops tomorrow?" and he replied " Do you want me to?" to which me, Stephen and, I think, Katie said "YES"!!

Then he explained that as he wanted to do nice clear autographs for everyone, he was always shaking the pens and tended to get ink everywhere, which is why we always saw him in the old shirts for autographs. He said it was the nicest shirt he owned and he didn't want to get ink on it. I think I might have said "oh please?" or something at this point. I told him he was looking really good and he replied that he had just had 4 weeks off so was feeling so much better after the continuous year and a half with no days off " and I mean no weekends, no Saturdays" to emphasise his point. And then added – "You should have seen me 4 weeks ago – I looked like shit!"

All the time he is talking to me, James is looking me straight in the eyes across the table and I was really aware of his beautiful cheekbones – the shadows were just catching him right. I had to give myself a little mental shake – "this is James across the table. It really is James who you are looking across at and having a conversation with!" which is probably why I don't remember some of what was said – there was too much to take in at once.!! Gorgeous sight, gorgeous sound!

James was talking to Janet again then – he had to turn towards her so he could lip read, and I couldn't hear the question, but I think she must have asked him about toys/action figures from Dragonball – because James's answer was "a Piccolo dildo"!! I think we all did a double take, thinking we hadn't heard it right – and then James had to repeat it again slowly for Janet "a Piccolo dildo" – so we weren't hearing things – (but I wish I had heard the question.!) Addressing the whole table James said the toy he would really like to se was a life sized head of Piccolo which if you tried to put anything in his mouth would say "Bite me!" – go figure!

Then I got in again and said – "most of us discovered you because of Spike. Until I met you for the first time, you were James Marsters, Spike from Buffy, but as soon as I met you, immediately you became 2 completely separate entities. There's James" and I indicated one side "and there's Spike" indicating the other. James was grinning and said that Spike was not like him at all – he had an IQ that was about 50 points lower than James. "Not stupid - he wasn't stupid, but I had to do a lot of thinking (made appropriate `thinking' face!) on set". And I do remember something about Spike being very petulant and sulky – and me adding with the maturity of a 12 year old! James then said he had had 5 perfect roles in his acting life so far – 4 of them in theatre and probably seen by a total of 10,000 people altogether – and Spike. I told him that now I often forgot it was him playing Spike as I think of them as so different now – " I have to remind myself " that's James" on screen" – which he appreciated because I don't think of him and Spike as one and the same . I think I got a definitive head bob (you know the one he does!) with a "yeah" in answer as well, which makes it definite!

I asked him what work he had coming up and he said Dragonball and Moonshot, but I clarified " anything new?" and he replied nothing at the moment – there's nothing in the pipeline.

It was about now that Helen came over to try and extract him to go to the next table, but we were still keeping him talking. As he got up, Katie asked him about a new album and he replied with a grin – it cost me forty thousand dollars for the last one, so it needs to make more money!" and the laughed and was gone to the next table.

I quickly yanked out my notebook and saying to Stephen "quick – what did he say?" and he was prompting me as I wrote notes (the ones I'm using now!) I was able to take a lot of pictures whilst he was at our table – but not whilst he was talking to me (as that would have been rude!) Got up to talk to Patti a the next table as they had had James there already and then was talking with her and SteveH – who then showed us that he can do the trick with the cherry stem – tying it in a knot with his tongue!! SteveH has hidden talents!! I had a photo with him taken by Patti and then we were talking about all the stuff that has been going on, on the internet and SteveH said he just couldn't win – all he could do was laugh. I said to him what Patti and I had been talking about earlier – if James drank at the party, then he had a problem and if he didn't drink, then he was on the wagon and so had a problem. We were pleased James was drinking (one glass of red wine that lasted him all evening) as he is a grown man and can make his own decisions!

After that (having made some more notes of things as I remembered them) I was talking to Lisa in the middle of the room – she was keeping an eye on the table that James was now at (the last one at this point) – she said " as long as no one jumps him on this last table, we're home free" and then added " yes, I know he's a big boy and he can take care of himself, but it's on my watch!" We talked a bit about the groping and inappropriate touching and Lisa said mostly it was people not realising what they had done and being mortified straight after – something seems to come over people in that situation. They hadn't really had any problems this time as the photo room was big and light and open (not a closed in little space like at Milton Keynes) and Froggy was quick – but firm and polite. Seems to help stop people when it's a much more open and exposed environment (do people think that if others can't see it happening, they can get away with it? Um - I think James is going to know!!)

I wanted to get my ticket back – Lisa understood about that, wanting it for the scrap book as a memento – so I asked SteveH and he gave me mine back and yelled out if anyone else wanted theirs back to keep – a lot of people did!

Stephen had slipped SteveH a note saying could we sing Happy Birthday to James at the end, so when both boys had come to the mic, SteveH told him that Gareth was going to lead everyone in singing "Mr Marsters" Happy Birthday. He made James come to the middle of the room, which he did with good grace even though he was protesting – and decided to go the whole hog by standing on a chair whilst we all sang. – When we got to his name, Gareth sang "James Marsters, Spike from Buffy" (it's become James clarifying title now – JamesMarstersSpikefromBuffy, all one word!) This is the only time I have seen James look a bit embarrassed – he was laughing as he called across "I am so going to kick your ass" but I'm not sure if he was addressing SteveH or Gareth!

And then it was nearly over – James laughing and exchanging a few comments with people and then he was going – I called out " goodnight James" as he went – there is no way I could have got out of my seat to get any closer, so just took hasty pictures.

It was great – I loved it. Every minute of it. Loved to hear James sing, fantastic to have him to talk to and not feel rushed to just gabble a question or two. This was my first (and hopefully not last) intimate event with James and I loved it – it was worth every damn cent. I felt so happy afterwards, going back in the taxi – we weren't really talking, just remembering bits from the evening.

Up to now the weekend had been so great – and it just kept on going! Outside Stephen and Squirrels hotel, I met Merce, a Spanish James fan whom I last saw at MK – I didn't know she was going to be here so that was a nice surprise. We had a bit of a chat – she was really at D*C for writers workshops - and hoped we could find each other again the next day. Once back at the hotel, I had a quick flip through my pictures and pulled a few off the camera to post so people could see what it was like. I was wide awake and still bouncing and squeeing all over the place – because still had another panel to go in the morning, and more photo ops and autographs the next day – AND a bit more on Monday too! A wonderful, long weekend in the company of so many lovely people and most importantly, the most wonderful, gorgeous man on earth!! (That's James in case you were wondering