Monday, 19 January 2009

This Is England by Amit Dhand


This is the first page of a short story by Amit. Enjoy...


This is England

It wasn’t always this way. In fact, it was never this way. I’ve been dragged down to their level; their way of life. The streets have been degraded, mirroring the sewer system running beneath my feet. The vermin that once survived below the surface of the earth have transgressed into humans. Humans who have no tolerance. No discipline. No hope.
Sitting on the park bench, the rain is unrelenting. It drips down my temple, over my nose and falls to the floor. My tears are fused with the rain, but the quiet, shaking of my body is not the cold; it’s the broken man I’ve become. The sturdy resilience I’ve had all my life has been shattered by the cancer infesting society. I’ve tried to do this the right way; I’ve tried to make them see sense. No one listens. No one cares. Tonight they will. Tomorrow the shock and horror of what I’ve done will reverberate around the whole country, and they’ll ask themselves; how did it get to this?
Sliding my hand over the bag next to me, I feel the twenty metres of steel wire I’ll need. The rain lashes down harder, the moon cowers behind a cloud, and darkness suffocates the night. Looking across the park, I focus my eyes intensely on the shadow: He is here.
The switch doesn’t take long. A nod, handshake, and it’s done. Carl turns away from his dealer and begins the walk towards me. Towards his death.
I keep still and look down at my hands. They’ve held so many awards over my thirty years of service. So many microphones at after dinner speeches, so many handshakes of politicians that promised change. Promised not to let Paul’s memory be forgotten. Promises are so easily forgotten; wiped away like raindrops on a windscreen. Blood isn’t so easily removed, and tonight after the screams that will dominate the howling wind, much blood will be shed.
The Smith and Wesson revolver sits protected in my pocket. It’s Carl’s. Swiping it from the station wasn’t difficult. Just like society, the force is infested with disease. Procedures are ignored, paperwork unchecked and too much emphasis on trust. I learned the hard way; trust is no longer a commodity worth trading in.
What will they say tomorrow? He lost it. He wasn’t well. He didn’t take the anti-depressants. They’ll write about me in a manner they’ve never done before. It’ll hurt them. Thirty years of pats on the back and media respect will be obliterated. I’ll be just another criminal, stealing a headline. But it’ll hurt them. Deep down, they’ll know they failed me. They failed themselves. They failed England.

5 comments:

  1. Great, atmospheric stuff here, Amit. Would love to read the entire story some time.

    ReplyDelete
  2. What comes next?

    A.B.

    ReplyDelete
  3. installment 2 due next week guys...

    ReplyDelete