Here’s the excerpt I was telling you about from Looking For Walter Newhouse.
Ray Pearce, the narrator, was hit over the head and bundled into the boot (the trunk for my American friends) of a car. Now he’s been pulled out, at night and he is lying on the floor surrounded by four men who he can’t see properly in the dark.
Oh, it’s definitely NSFW, by the way.
That’s it. Enjoy.
Lying on my back on the cold ground I could make out four figures standing around me, looking down at me. But I couldn’t make out any features in the dark.
Somewhere an owl hooted.
‘You want me to give him a good kicking, Boss?’
‘Not yet, no. Let’s see what he has to say for himself.’
They fell silent. I wondered if maybe now was the point at which I should say something. But nobody had asked me anything. What was I going to do, talk about the weather?
‘Would anyone mind if I sat up?’ I said. ‘I’m getting cold down here.’
‘You can kick him now.’
The foot landed in my right side before I had chance to protest. It caught me just under my ribs and I thought that foot was going to keep on going until it burst out the other side, but then it wasn’t and then the pain really started. I hoped they weren’t going to ask me if I had anything to say for myself again, at least not for a minute or two, as I was having trouble breathing, let alone talking. I rolled over onto my side, the other side, the one that hadn’t just received a pile driver, and tried not to puke.
‘Let’s try that again.’
‘What do you want to know?’ I said.
Someone laughed and the other three immediately joined in.
‘What do we want to know, he says. He’s funny, isn’t he?’
‘Can I kick him again?’
‘No, let somebody else have a turn.’
‘Wait!’ I gasped, holding up a hand. ‘Just, please, wait. Let me get my breath back.’
‘All right, we’re waiting. But we’re not going to wait long. Mr Thumpy, he gets bored waiting.’
I glanced up. One of the shadowy figures was holding a cricket bat, and slapping it into the palm of his hand.
Did he really call that cricket bat Mr Thumpy?
I lay there, racking my brains for something to say that wouldn’t end with me receiving a cricket bat in the face. But I was at a loss. What did they want to know? Who did they think I was? I didn’t have much of an option other than to try and find out.
‘Look, I’m a bit groggy right now, a bit out of it, could you maybe give me a clue as to what this might be about?’ I said.
‘Give you a clue? What the hell do you think this is? Quiz night at your local?’
‘I’m rubbish at quizzes,’ I said. ‘I need things, you know, spelling out for me.’
‘What the hell are you talking about? I’m not spelling nothing for you. What’s he talking about?’
‘He thinks he’s better than us, just because he’s got an education.’
‘Mr Thumpy could give him a spelling lesson.’
‘You hear that Mr Educated Prick? Mr Thumpy’s going to give you a spelling lesson unless you start talking.’
I groaned. This wasn’t going to end well.
‘All right, I’ll talk, but you’ve got to give me a…a hint, something to give me an idea of what you want me to say.’
The dark figure holding the cricket bat lifted it up high. ‘I’m going to enjoy this.’
‘Hold on a minute. Haven’t you got anything else you can hit him with?’
The cricket bat was slowly lowered back down.
‘I don’t know. Haven’t we got a tyre iron in the car?’
‘Why can’t I use Mr Thumpy?’
‘I don’t want it damaged.’
‘And I don’t want blood stains all over it.’
‘That’s right, blood stains. I don’t want them on the cricket bat.’
‘But this is Mr Thumpy. He likes blood stains.’
‘Look, can you stop calling the cricket bat Mr Thumpy? It’s doing my head in.’
‘But you said I could call him Mr Thumpy.’
‘I know, I was just…I was, you know, humouring you. I thought you were joking, I didn’t think you were fucking serious about giving the cricket bat a name.’
‘Look, hand it over, give Mr Thumpy, ah for fuck’s sake, I mean the cricket bat, give it to me.’
‘What the hell?’
‘I said no, I’m not giving you Mr Thumpy. You gave him to me, and you said I could call him Mr Thumpy.’
‘Sandy, give him the fucking cricket bat, will you. I’m fucking freezing my tits off out here.’
‘Oh, you stupid twat.’
‘What have I done?’
‘You used his name, didn’t you? I told you all, no names.’
‘Give me the fucking cricket bat, Sandy.’
‘No, you gave it to me, you said I could use it on him.’
‘Yeah, I wasn’t fucking serious, was I? I just wanted you to wave it about a bit, act threatening. I didn’t ask you to give it a fucking name and treat it like your long lost brother. And I didn’t give it to you, I let you borrow it, but it’s still my fucking cricket bat and I still don’t want fucking blood stains all over it. Now give me the fucking cricket bat and go and get the fucking tyre iron so we can cave this fucker’s fucking head in. All right?’
‘I still don’t know why we can’t use Mr Thumpy.’
‘Oh for fuck’s sake! Because my lad’s got a cricket match tomorrow, that’s why. And I don’t want him turning up with this wanker’s blood and brains all over the bat! Somehow, if that happens, I don’t think they’ll let him play, do you?’
Sandy passed the cricket bat over and turned back to the boot of the car.
‘You’d better tell us what you know, or else you’re getting a tyre iron in the face, you understand?’
I should keep my mouth shut, I’m my own worst enemy. Some days though, life is so shitty that it’s not worth keeping your mouth shut.
I am not around right now. But you can send me an email and I will get back to you, asap.
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