The Men In The Shadows ( Part 2)

Jake. pic

The bald guy with the spread nose walked back into the shadows to join the other two. Jake could see they were talking but couldn’t hear what was being said. He should have been scared shitless but for some strange reason he wasn’t. His only thoughts were that maybe they had the wrong bloke. What could they possibly want with him? He just worked in bloody Ironmongers, doing a mundane job for fucks sake!
The three of them emerged from the darkness and approached him.
This time a different man spoke. He wasn’t as big as the first one but he had SOME face. A face that looked like it had been lived in, a face that looked like it had seen its fair share of violence. Jake was guessing that it was a face that won more than it lost. The man leaned forward.
“Jake, listen to me very carefully, no one wants to hurt anyone, but if we have to then we will. We need you to do us a favour, a favour that you will be well paid for. We know your old man hasn’t worked for a long time, your mums got a little cleaning job, not much money around, and everything’s a bit tight. So, we want to help, give you a few bob to make things easier. But you have to help us out, understand?”
Jake didn’t, but nodded.
“Good boy, now we’re gonna let you go. You go back to work, make your excuses for being late and carry on as usual. We’ll be in touch in the next couple of days, but remember Jake, if you tell anyone and we mean anyone, the big guy over there WILL break both your dads’ legs. You wouldn’t want that to happen now would you Jake?”
Jake shook his head.
“Can’t hear you Jake, you need to say the words so that we can all hear them.”
“No, I wouldn’t want that to happen.”
“There, you see Jake. Now we all know where we stand.”
There was something about his voice and the way he spoke. It was all matter of fact but something about it terrified Jake.
He untied Jakes hands and led him to the steel door of the railway arch. Jake went to walk out into the sunlight when he felt the man’s hand on his shoulder.
“Word of advice Jake, don’t try to be clever, don’t try and be slippery, just do as you’re told and everything will work out fine.”
He was pushed out of the doorway and heard the steel door shut behind him. He looked at his watch. It was 8.45. Fuck he was over an hour late.
His mobile was in his pocket, he had two missed calls. He listened to his voicemail and picked up Stevie’s messages. Thank fuck for Stevie, he couldn’t afford to lose this job, no way.
A million questions went through his mind as he walked the thirty minutes to work. Who were these guys, what the fuck did they want, it all seemed surreal, like a scene from a bloody low budget British gangster film. But it had happened, it was real.
He entered the warehouse via the fire escape at the back of the building, a short cut that all the lads knew. He picked up a pair of overalls that they kept hidden behind the radiator, put them on and walked over to his machine. He started it up.
“Oi, bollock chops, where you been?”
It was Pisshead.
“Doctors Guv, told you last week.”
The Shift Supervisor walked over and stood beside him. He shook his head from side to side.
“Well I don’t remember you telling me, so just get on with your job, no lunch for you today Jake, you can catch up on the hours that you missed. I’m watching you Roberts. One mistake and you’re out. ”
“Yeh, no problem guv. I’ll work through lunch and stay an extra half hour at the end of the shift just to make up for it.”
Pisshead walked away, pleased with himself that he’d told that bloody Jake Roberts his life story.
Jake smiled to himself, what a wanker that bloke was, he would be asleep in his office at 2.30 this afternoon and not wake up till 6. After being in the pub all lunchtime and downing about eight pints he wouldn’t have a clue if Jake had a break or not. He quickly called Steve on his mobile.
“Thanks for covering mate, look I’ve got to take a late lunch. You do the same, meet you in the café at three?”
Stevie agreed. Jake went back to operating his big heavy machine and thought about the past few hours. He half expected cameras to suddenly appear out of nowhere and all his family and friends to start clapping and laughing because he’d been the victim of some fabulous wind up.
But it never happened.
At three o’clock, Jake looked over at the supervisor’s office. Sure enough could see Pisshead fast asleep in his chair. He turned off the machine and headed out of the building towards the café. Stevie was already there.
“Where the fuck were you this morning? Pisshead was going mad.”
“Something came up that I had to deal with straightaway.”
“And that was more important than your fucking job?”
“Look Stevie, I need to tell you something.”
Jakes phone rang, it was an unknown number. He answered it.
“Are you some kind of cunt Jake? If you say one more word, your dad will be in a wheelchair by the end of the day.”
The phone went silent.
Jake looked around, he couldn’t see anyone or anything that looked suspicious.
Without saying another word, he got up and went straight back to work.
Stevie looked up in astonishment as Jake left the café. He shook his head from side to side and whispered under his breath.
“Jake Roberts you are one strange fucked up moron.”


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