Zedlist – Part Twenty Six

Serial Fiction

“All I ask is for you to have a little faith in me. If our friendship means anything to you, then you’ll trust me.”

“I’m here aren’t I?” Alex retorted, “Anyway, I can’t imagine this lasting much longer, man. I saw the police outside as we were coming in.”

“They aren’t here for us”, Kevin said, “they are here to control the crowds. If they buzz then Dale knows exactly what to say to them through the intercom. They can’t come in without a warrant. By the time they get one we will be long gone. Even if they do come in we can just pretend to be doing work experience here, or something, and act as disorientated as everyone else. Anyway, the protests outside will be enough to distract everyone away from this until it is all over.”

“I wish I shared your optimism, man, I really do, but it just seems like a hell of a lot to go wrong, man, and I’m usually a gung-ho kind of person, y’know?”

“Well, I’m a cautious person”, Kevin said, “and I wouldn’t be here unless I knew exactly what I was doing. I have people in the crowd outside keeping me updated by text and are ready to help out if anything goes wrong”.

“Okay, okay, I’ll chill. It’s just all a bit crazy y’know. I’ve got butterflies in my stomach, man. By the way, are you hungry? I might go and get some snacks from one of the machines”.

“I have some food in my bag”, Kevin said.

After Alex had gone, Kevin got up from his seat and had a look through the glass in the door to see Tim and Colin cross legged on the floor with their eyes closed and holding hands.

Kevin got his food out, which consisted of a Waldorf salad made with Greek yoghurt instead of mayonnaise, brown rice fried in coconut oil with edamame beans, a packet of unsalted cashew nuts and a bottle of water. Alex came back with a packet of Rib n’ Saucy flavour Nik Naks, a Dime bar, and a can of Pepsi.

“What do you think of that Amy girl?” Alex said, after finishing his crisps.

“I think she is probably the most resourceful person I have ever met.” Kevin said.

“No, do you think she’s fit?” Alex asked.

“I haven’t really thought about…”

“Oh, come on man, come on, don’t give me that bullshit! I saw the way your jaw dropped when you saw her, man.”

“Yeah, ok, ok. I think she’s cute.” Kevin said, blushing.

“I knew it.” Alex exclaimed, “You wanna save the day and get the girl, don’t you?”

“I’m pretty sure she’s capable of saving herself.”

“I reckon you’ll get her mum’s approval. What was it she called you? A ‘man child’”, Alex laughed.

“She called you a man child, too.” Neither of the men doubted for a second that Tim was the Chaos Magician.

“Yeah, but I’m not the one who wants to get all boomchikawowow with her daughter, man.” Alex said, still chuckling to himself. –

“You’re disgusting.”

“I might be disgusting, but you are definitely pathetic. You didn’t need to invent a massive back story about a freaky demon just to get a girlfriend, dude. Just go to a nightclub like everyone else.”

Kevin laughed, “Just coz you think about girls all the time doesn’t mean I do. Anyway, why would she be interested in someone like me? She’s totally out of my league.”

“Fair”, Alex said, jumping up and revealing a pre-rolled spliff in his hand and flashing a cheeky smile. “Do you reckon I can spark it up in here?” –

Kevin frowned. “It might set of the sprinkler system. We could try smoking one out the window.”

They found a window at the end of the hall. Kevin discovered a safety catch at the base of the frame which allowed him to open the window wide enough to lean out of. To reach, Kevin needed to lift his feet off of the floor by about a foot. He took in the turbulent drama playing out on the street below. The police had started blocking everyone in and even from three stories up Kevin was sure that the expressions on the celebrity masks had turned to that of blind panic. He took a long pull on the spliff, and then saw something that made him splutter and cough out a plume of uninhaled smoke. Alex grabbed Kevin’s legs and jolted him forwards. Kevin let out a short scream.

“What the actual fuck? Don’t. Do you want to kill me?” Kevin shouted. Alex pulled him back into the hallway and let go, laughing uncontrollably.

“Nice one! I almost dropped it”, he said, passing the spliff to Alex. Kevin had turned a rather pale shade of pink.

“Take a look down there and tell me that isn’t the black van that was parked outside our house.” Kevin said in a panicked tone.

Alex glanced down, “It’s hard to say from up here”, he said. “I guess it could be. Shit, what if it is? Do you want me to scare them off like last time?”

“No, that’ll draw way too much attention. Anyway I’m probably just being paranoid. Here, you can finish this off”, Kevin said, passing Alex the spliff, “I should probably try to keep a clear head.”

Alex didn’t argue with this, and continued smoking out of the window, making sure to keep his feet firmly on the floor.

 

NEXT: Zedlist – Part Twenty Seven

PREVIOUS: Zedlist – Part Twenty Five

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more by LUCAS HOWARD

Photograph by Shane Walsh

 

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Lucas Howard

When I was seven I started copying poems out of a book and telling people they were mine. When I ran out of good ones to copy, I had to start writing my own. I have been performing and organising nights on the UK spoken word scene now for over seven years and am most of the way through writing the first draft of my first novel 'Zedlist', which is serialised on here. As the story is in fetal form, any critiques or suggestions are most welcome.

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