I haven’t really written anything current in a while because I’ve been writing a book. I’m into crime novels, and I’m looking into various themes. I’m keeping them under wraps so no one steals my idea. It comes from when I was flat broke at university and contemplated robbing a petrol station using a balaclava and a RIF (Real Imitation Firearm) Dan Wesson 2.5 Sub Nose pistol I found on the internet. In fact, it was the one pictured below.
It was a desperate time, I had no money, I was in debt and had no way to get out. I left the items (gun and balaclava) in their respective baskets until I had enough to time to think it over and thank god, I wasn’t stupid and decided against it in the end. It’s one of the lowest places I have been to and it’s there I got the idea for Michael. Named for my brother. In all honesty, if we were the same person we would be dangerous. He in many ways is what I’d like to be, personality traits and attitude. If my personality and his were in the same body I might have done it.
This then became my safe way of dealing with it. My innate need to plan out the daring without the insanity to carry it out, teamed with the daring nature of my brother and his can-do attitude. We’d be f**king dangerous in another lifetime.
I love you bro.
So this is an excerpt from my book. a sort of prelude, one of a series of preludes, setting out how Michael gets away with it and who he does it with, backstory, yada yada… Let me know what you think.
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Boltholes and Home
A bolthole is a referred to as somewhere a rabbit or wild animal can escape to. I had two of them. I had 47 Galleon House, on the Isle of Dogs, and 57 Hazel Grove, in Hertfordshire. Galleon House was my childhood home, we acquired it as part of a fortuitous set of circumstances. My mother made an exchange on her council house with my grandfather who lived at our then, current address. My grandfather never gave it up and moved in with us. I was then was put in charge of his finances. I paid him handsomely every month for the flat. I would slip a few hundred in with his pention. I used it to plan our jobs. Right where I played with cars as a child, there was a coffee table with a Webley MK. VI on it, a few dirty mags and one of those cut-glass ashtrays grannies usually have.
We had a few sofas we got from Rhys’ old house. The wall had a whiteboard drilled to it, pictures would usually be tacked to it for the job at the time. Blackout curtains on the kitchen window. Old empty cans of beer and empty whiskey bottles on the floor. This was our boardroom. Not the most professional place but it was mine, and it worked. I have so many fond memories of that place.
Hazel Grove on the other hand, was a dump with a front door, to accurately describe it. We all eventually chipped in and bought it outright when we started making money. We bought it in cash from a friend of William. He asked no questions so we took it as seen, and it stayed that way. Over time it just grottier and grottier. The occasional pizza box here and there turned into a mountain. We never stayed there long enough to think of cleaning it that often. This was our hideaway. If it got too hot in London, or we had too much cash to hide, we took it there. The back garden was on a slope, with a massive peach tree at the top and a shed, it really was a beautiful spot there. When the police eventually dug it up, that peach tree, the shed, the lawn, were all destroyed. I felt like we never really appreciated what we had there. Galleon too, they raided it top to toe and found our guns in the water tank, and the cash stacked inside the doors. They took them off the hinges and smashed them to bits in front of my wife. She had no idea what went on until they started pulling stacks of fifty pound notes out of the wood splinters. I told her I had a snooker table up there.
The police destroyed everything I’d ever built. Everyone will see a raid on the news and will think to themselves, “Good, they should be getting a real job”. They fail to see that to me, this was a real job. I even paid taxes on the money I stole. We laundered it through the use of SIA licences and a few moody receipts and invoices. We all got close-protection licences and put ourselves down as self-employed. Close-protection security pays highly, and for every job we would produce fake receipts all through our company records, all run through Galleon House as a small business of four staff. We even paid tax on our company. We could deposit £2000 per week into our own accounts without any suspicion and if questions were asked, we had “official” paperwork that not only explained the source of the money, but put the right date at the top and it provided an alibi too. We filled out our self-assessments every year and provided the phoney invoices on company headed notepaper. It was perfect. As long as everyone paid their taxes, most criminals get found out because of their taxes.
My home was beautiful. We lived at Urmston House, on the Isle of Dogs. As we did more and more jobs, I needed to hide my money. I threw it at Urmston. I’d tell my mum to point at anything and I’d buy it. I paid for grandad’s care, he deserved the best and seeing as I had it, I got him the best. I bought my brother a car. I tipped homeless people pinkies. Home was somewhere that out of the negativity, I could make a difference. I always felt brand new there. I got into robbery to build a better life for my family. I used to fire blanks into the air to scare people into submission yet, tried to keep my brother from doing what I did and gave him money for a business start-up. In a perverted way, I was saving my family from darkness and obscurity by using darkness and obscurity.
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It’s a work in progress, but I feel strong enough about my idea that I can make it work. It takes time to prefect, and I’m willing to give it that. I want the correct level of smooth and grit. This guy is kinda me you know, I have to do myself justice…