How's ya new lockdown then? I've been scribbling a little bit with a view to getting me mojo back and I've come up with a few ideas for 'long shorts' or novella length stories. Once I've got them written up and got them knocked into shape I'll see what the publishing options are but in the meantime how'd you like a taster?
This has the working title of 'Clubbed' and is going to be a bit violent I think...nowt changes!
It's always helpful (and a bit motivating if i'm honest!) to have people's thoughts and opinions so please let me know what you think. Remember kids, the vaccine's en-route, summer's coming and the pubs will one day open again - so keep on keeping on.
When I was in nick some old lag asked me why I was there. Still full of trying to look hard enough to avoid unwanted attention I told him I’d given some mouthy Millwall docker a proper hiding and he’d laughed. ‘You football cissies don’t know what a proper hiding is.’
I thought of that now as I watched them dragging the kid out. He’d definitely had a proper one. No doubt about that. I knew he'd had a white polo shirt on when he'd bounced through the door at Spinks all full of himself, looked a deeper shade of plum now and his nose,cheeks, and probably ribs, weren't in full working order anymore. They smashed him off every wall in the club as they dragged him out, making sure everyone knew not to ever dare even think about selling their own gear on Dickie Spinks patch.
The hand bounced off my shoulder as I watched them open the reception doors with his face one last time and I turned. Slowly, like I was the last person with any thing to worry about in this place. The man himself, high jinks Spinks, right in front of me with his ever present little tag-along the Weasel.
‘Alright Robbo? How's tricks son, never saw you come in.’
Old school mates me and Spinks - he punched, kicked and stabbed his way up the criminal ladder. Me? I punched, elbowed and nutted my way up the terraces. He made money and I made a reputation.
‘Did you see my new motor outside? Top of the range beamer, goes like shit off a stick son.’
On reflection I might well have made a poor decision there.
‘I did Spinksy, looks smart mate.’
I suppose I’ll have to go through the whole charade now I've started as well, so with an internal sigh I turn slightly towards his whiny-faced associate.
‘Weasel, how are you?’
‘That's Wesley to you Robson.’
This fucker always gets brave around his boss.
‘You'll always be a weasel to me...weasel’
Scrawny little neck getting redder by the second, wants Spinksy to step in and make me play nice but he won't so not sure how to play it.
‘You don't get to talk to me like that Robson. I'm part of the crew in here and you show respect or you get the treatment that prick did.’
I just smile at him. Weasel is the kind of horrible little bastard who'll hide behind the big boys while the fighting’s going on then stick a blade in someone on the floor.
‘You were a weasel at school. You're a weasel now and if you want to give me any kind of “treatment” then we can go out back now and do it. The only reason I don't snap you in two is because you work for Spinksy.’
‘That's enough lads. Wes get some drinks. Robbo, I'd like a chat in the office.’
‘How you off for work these days son?’
Fuck me that was quick, just in the office and not even sat down before he's making his move.
‘Bones of me arse Spinks mate. Bit of debt collection here and there plus whatever I can get off the social. ‘
‘I heard you'd been collecting for Wee Alec? Bit fucking low-rent that son eh?’
He's not wrong. I hate that little prick.
‘Needs must mate. As you know I’ve got a couple of years chalked up to her majesty so I'm not really sending out a glowing cv to prospective employers’
‘That's the football for you son. No offence but fighting for pleasure is some sort of mugs game. A lad like you should be making a fucking good living from them knuckles.’
He's got a point but I've never been quite as thick as he thought I was. Short fuse? Yes. Dislike of all things authority? Abso-fucking-lutely. Too thick too make a living? Nope.
‘So how'd you like to come on board with me son?”
Eureka. About time mind. I thought he was gonna keep me waiting all night there.
‘I'd be made up Spinksy but I’ll have to say no mate. I can't have weasel as a boss. I’ll end up killing him and then you'd have to kill me.’
Face laughing. Eyes not. It's a long time since anyone said no to him. He knows I'm talking sense though, the little exchange outside confirmed that. That's why I did it.
‘Why would you need me anyway? You've got a good operation here as far as I can see.’
Throw him a bone, let him know I'm not definitely out.
‘Well, you saw that incident earlier. I've got a problem with security. There's a new little gobshite every week trying it on. Someone's encouraging them and at least one of the doorstaff’s letting them in.’
One of the doorstaff gave Stacey’s Uncle Terry a slap down the labour club last week. Laughed in her Aunty Jo’s face when she told him I'd be wanting a word. Lovely.
‘I can tell you who that is for nothing mate. I clocked that earlier. If you can find a way of me not answering to Weasel then I’ll go and sort that now for you. Call it a trial period...’
Now his eyes are smiling with the rest of his face and I'm giving him a wink just as Weasel comes in the door.
‘You answer only to me Robbo. ‘
‘Right then boss. I’ll just complete my aptitude test then I’ll be back on for that drink.’
He’s laughing, Weasel's frowning and they're both turning towards the cctv as i head back into the club and the steroid-addled bag of wind and piss that laid hands on my family. I'd best make this good.
There's him, the head doorman and another square-necked one hanging round the front door. All still a bit high on the adrenalin of three of them battering one lad. Fucking bullies all of ‘em - I'd fancy my chances with all three if it comes down to it but best play the game for now.
‘Here, head boy, your boss wants you to give him a ring in the office. Now.’
They're looking me up and down like feral dogs who've just clocked a discarded chicken. No. 1 gorilla motions them to keep an eye on me then lumbers into the cloakroom and the phone. I no-class square-neck and blank him completely. Smiling at the plastic hard man I'm already picking my spot while he tries to remember where he knows me from.
‘Jimmy, boss gotta job for us.”
Square-neck turns and goes. Doesn't think about it. I catch the other’s eye, he knows what's about to happen and doesn't like it. Knows he's doing fuck all about as well though and wants to keep the job. Turning back to the bully I see it's just about dawning on him. Aware of the cameras I point a bit as I'm talking - no sound though so I can say anything I want.
‘Drink down the Labour club on a Sunday do you?’
He's facing the camera so they can both, clearly, see him say yes.
‘Gave my uncle a doing didn't you? Then took the piss.’
He's laughing. Thinks he's untouchable ‘cos he's working for Spinks and, as far as he knows, I'm not.
‘So what if I did. You'll do fuck all about it and I'll do it again next week.’
Lovely. Case rested your honour.
I turn as if to walk off then swing round and hoof him in the nuts. To his credit he doesn't go down just crosses his eyes a bit a tries to step back. I pretend to swing another kick so he lowers his hand to block and without waiting stick a hard right straight through his fucking nose. He snaps back, bounces off the wall and I'm on him, raining punches on the prick.
'You don't drink down that club anymore. And Spinksy says you don't live here anymore.’
He's finished. It's over. Quickest job interview ever. The other bouncers are out to drag him away and I'm being introduced as the new head of security.
Well worth the two hundred notes worth of gear I supplied to the lad in the white polo. Game on.