Nice to meet you all first post and first story. Any and all feedback appreciated not done much writing in a while and i am rusty as shit. Any feedback massively appreciated. Some violenc/mentions of torture and rape nothing too outrageous though i'm really vanilla.
I never planned anything much in my life really. I sat there staring out of a murky window in my cheap flat. It wasn’t big but was very well furnished I promised myself when i got deep enough into this shit that if it wouldn't be for nothing. Plasma screen, shag carpets and luxurious leather furniture. The windows remained murky though which i liked as they seemed to be a shield from the outside. A lot like myself in some ways, i always dressed nicely but between me and the outside existed this shield of filth. The life i had gotten myself in did me no favours. I took another drag of my cigarette and lined another bump up on my coffee table. I had to do something tonight. I had already been paid and the job was dirty. Not dirty enough to turn the money down but neither was anything for me these days. I thought back to what got me here with a heavy head full of drugs and a loaded gun in my hand.
I grew up knowing no parents knowing no love no tenderness. Just violence substance abuse and money kept me going. I had started running money for local dealers at the age of 6 which at the time paid me handsomely. When you are 6 and you have nothing and all of a sudden you make £50 in an afternoon taking money from one place to another it’s an unreal experience. I could buy things that the other kids in my home didn’t have. The men i worked for shit everybody up nobody would touch me. I felt invincible and i felt powerful. Which as you can imagine growing up in the care system is something i never felt. I was short for my age even then mousey brown hair green eyes button nose. In the wrong hands i would make a nice plaything. I knew that even then i knew that and money could never drown out the fear i felt. The crippling underlying fear.
I made friends older friends and things were good for about a year. When i was seven the guys i worked for moved me onto taking more hot packages between places for them. I stole a green BMX that i went everywhere on and i could shift 2 or three keys in a day. I stopped going to school and stopped going to the home altogether. I loved it and the crew i worked for became like a surrogate family. Shit was great and i lived as well as a homeless 8 year old could kipping in crackhouses and squats. Luckily at that time the people i ran meant that everybody left me alone and to myself when it came to addicts and other scum. Unfortunately this didn’t last forever.
I ran for that crew for a further 2 years. In that time i saw things that nobody should really see at that age. I saw an addict try and jump one of the crew for a bump and the addict did not fare well. With 4 wounds to the chest I watched the life drain from his eyes, i smelt the stench as he shit himself, i couldn’t tear my eyes away from the body. It lay there for hours. It’s eyes still open It’s skin turning waxy and It’s eyes staring forever into the distance. By the time they got rid of it he didn’t even seem human to me. Films and TV say that even people in the shittiest of lives are supposed to feel remorse or anguish when seeing things like this. At that point I’m not sure i even did feel anything. I just felt nothing. I saw how this life was i knew if you tried shit you got smashed. It was one of the events in my young life that lead to me becoming the detached being i was in my later years. Thing is a lot of people say that the youth involved in shit like this know nothing getting into it and that was somewhat true. But by 10 i knew what this game was about and very well where it could end. But i was in now and the money kept me going and i had my comrades. The final step down on my spiral was when i was 12. I was running to a new supplier the crew had been in touch with. Nobody knew much about him but i was disposable to the crew. He wasn’t buying in serious weight so they sent me. Looking back i should have known this but still i went, like a lamb to the slaughter. I arrived at this man’s house. A nice semi detached post war build. Nothing special looking about the place looked like the same soulless shitbox that business cunts drive their shitty BMW cars to. I knocked on the door and a bald man in a wife beater answered. I was immediately grabbed and pulled inside. This was not routine i normally gave the package at the door and went that was how this was supposed to go. Now i was inside this hallway with this huge man holding me against the wall. I struggled to no avail. Tried to reach for my shank and couldn’t make it. I was eventually muscled into a room and thrown into a chair. I wish i could remember more about what happened there but truly i can’t. I was terrified. I was given the typical rudeboy spiel about what the fuck i was doing on his patch. The normal shake down shit. I had been smashed up loads of times in the past but nothing compared to the beating i received there.
I remember waking up sometime later my whole body in agony. My hands were bound i was left in a _base_ment somewhere. There was a dim light from a bulb hanging from the ceiling and this place stank like stale piss. There were boxes here and there, a freezer and not much else. My left eye throbbed totally closed up. For the first time in a very long time i sat spread my little hands over my eyes and sobbed bitterly. I knew where this was leading. It would be my body turning waxy in the cold next. I lived like a lunatic child like i had nothing to live for but only when faced with true mortality did it sink in. I sat there for what felt like hours pouring my little heart out into that dim cellar. I was truly broken. Eventually a voice bellowed down the wooden stairs leading down.
“YOU BETTER SHUT THE FUCK UP DOWN THERE BOY BEFORE I GIVE YOU SOMETHING TO CRY ABOUT!”
i stifled my sobs and quietened down. At this point leaving there with my life was top priority to me. That or some water, i was ridiculously thirsty. I saw a dog bowl of water in the corner, i didn’t give a shit if a dog had been in it. I tried to move over to the bowl and at that point i realised that my feet were also bound. My left leg was in crippling pain as well. A small squeal came from me as i made my way over the damp cellar floor. It felt like a mile to me those few yard across the floor there. I finally made it and drank deeply from the shitty smelling water, Letting every gulp cool my aching _frame_. I hadn’t noticed the 3 men coming down the stairs in my state of utter ecstasy. An older man with glasses and two large men stood there at the foot of the stairs staring down at me. One of them was the bald man from the door but i didn’t recognise either of the other two. They stared at me there pitiful and weak. I was truly feeble and at their mercy. I slowly felt my trousers begin to warm as i pissed myself in fear. The older man spoke softly.
“That water was meant for my dog you little shit. He’s worth ten little rat runner boys like yourself.”
i tried to shuffle back but made no ground as the bald man strode over to me again. I was roughly hoisted to his eye level and made to look into the older man’s face. He surveyed me up and down all the while i was blubbering pathetically.
“let’s see what this little shit playing big man gets in a big man’s world! Give me twenty boys i won’t be long!”
The bald man left and i was here alone with the older man.
I will spare you the details but i was used there. How dirty old cunts use small homeless boys trying to get by. I never felt more filthy and disgusting in my life as i did when he left that cellar. This went on for weeks. Beatings starvation and other things. Eventually I could open both of my eyes and got used to moving around the cellar in my bindings. One day I found a sharp nail end on the underside of the stairs which I used to tear and undo my hand bindings. First thing I tried to do was get out of that fucking door which was unfortunately locked. I looked around the cellar for something I could use to escape from this dungeon. I saw an old chest freezer in the corner and an old Stanley on a shelf above it. I made my plan. Later that night the old cunt came down to have some more fun with me. This time when he came down he found the lights off. He turned the lights on and immediately received a well placed slice to his private area. The man screamed and screamed. I looked up the stairs awaiting his two gorillas to come and save him. Nobody came unfortunately for him. This cunt was home alone. I decided that after all I had gone through at that point I was getting my revenge. I pushed the chest freezer over to his writhing slug like body. I split the wires with that knife and plugged the freezer in. I had my fill with that bastard there and then. I don’t know if he died but I now he must have been glowing in the dark when I was done with those wires. I hope he didn’t die personally; I want him to live the rest of his days with the scars I left him. I pulled my way up those stairs and made my way through that house. On his coffee table lay a .22 pistol. I grabbed it and stuffed into a nearby rucksack along with about £1.200 of his money.
I ran out of that house found by bike, still stuffed by the front door and made my way back to a squat a frequented. I never ran with my old crew again after that but I had money and I knew the trade. I made other friends on the opposite side of town and that was that. Over the next 12 years I did job after job. Deal after deal until I established myself as a respected member of the underworld, doing hard drugs partying and destroying myself slowly. Ever since that spell in the _base_ment I was more violent and depraved in my undertakings. I eventually stopped staying in squats and got my own place. Furnished it nicely dressed very well. I said i would never feel dirty and as scum like as I did in that cellar ever again. At least until that job came up.
Drugs flowing through my head I headed out from my house into the cold November night and climbed behind the wheel of my Rover 75. I was to drive round to meet a member of my old crew from when I was a kid. And I was going to put a fucking round between his eyes when I did. Apparently my man had been borrowing money and drugs that wasn’t his. I had been paid 8 grand for this hit and for that money I’d easily do it. I had a habit and a life_style_ to feed and I did not give a fuck. I had never done a wet job before so this was all alien to me. I pulled into the underground car park, it looked like every other one in the city grey cold and faceless. One man stood leaning on the bonnet of an old Renault clio shivering from the cold. I pulled up and got out. This man had been one of my friends as a kid. We were both of similar age at the time. He walked up to me arms out expecting an embrace and that’s when I did it. I pulled that same shitty old .22 pistol out of my suit pocket and dropped him. Three rounds to the left eye socket meant he didn’t as much as quiver when he hit the deck. I climbed back into my car and drove home. When I stumbled through my door I saw blood had splattered all down my suit. I took the whole lot off and threw it into the bin. Fuck it I can buy another. I sat for a second in my underwear feeling dirty and used. I hated this feeling and knew I had to shower immediately. Two strong shots of overproof rum and a hot shower did me no good. I still felt dirty. I collapsed tired, my eyes bloodshot from the previous few days. I fell into a deep slumber.
I was rudely awoken at some point around 3 AM. By the filth, boys in blew suited and booted gats out the works. They fucking ruined my flat the bastards. Bootprints and shit everywhere was all I noticed as I was dragged out of there in cuffs. It’s not like I would be seeing it anytime soon. It was a fucking slam dunk and for the second time in my life I was brutally fucked. They had my gun they had my bloody clothes they had the texts on my phone with the job details and they had footage of my car at the scene. I’d have to hire a fucking wizard at this point to get me off the hook. The police station was how I had expected it. I was made to wear a shitty grey tracksuit in a shitty white cell with a rock hard slab to sleep on. The trial was a fucking disaster for me they had my dead man’s bitch cokehead girlfriend wailing on the stands and I was well and truly crucified. I was sent down for 45 years no chance of parole, murder firearms offenses and enough Charlie to keep Hollywood going for a few hours. I was lead back to my white cage and I sat on my bed. This was all real now I was shafted. I sat on my bed and held my head in my hands. I knew this day was coming but I didn’t think it would be so soon. I was only 22. Very soon I had a knock at the door. And a man in a suit stepped in.
“My name is David Blakemore and I am here with applied sciences and I have an offer to make you”
“Oh yeah? Applied science? What offer is this? You want to pump me full of drugs and zap my brain or some shit?” I replied to the stern faced man sharply.
“Not quite, I am the head of a department that specializes in bioscience. We have been experimenting with a serum that could not only halt aging but totally reverse it. We need test subjects and I am offering you the chance to be a part of our program” He replied sternly enunciating every consonant in his speech like some sort of old time radio presenter.
“You must be taking the piss! You want to fucking shrink me back to being a kid? There are millions of needy cunts who would kill for the chance to be young again and you are offering this shit to me? I’m a convicted murderer and drug dealer for fuck sake!” The man seemed shocked by my blunt response. Slowly walked over and sat down next to me. He softly spoke to me.
“listen some of our funding comes from the government who want to know if this could be used to rehabilitate people like you. You are still a young man and I’ve read your file. You spent most of your childhood on a missing list and being a hoodlum. This way you get a chance to grow up properly in a stable home and maybe you can become a functioning member of society”
“fuck that. You want me to play around like I’m a fucking kid and go through the care system again? You have no fucking idea how hard it was the first time round? Fuck your serum and fuck society! All it ever did was shit on me anyway!” I replied harshly.
“I’ll put it to you this way son. Either you go through with this and for once in your life do something that might better the world and humanity, or you can go to jail and spend your entire life there only getting out as an old man if you are lucky! I am offering you a massive opportunity here” The man seemed serious.
I rolled it over in my head. On one hand this seemed like a wind up or some way to get me to sign over my body to be used and abused. I had been the plaything of one old man before I sure as shit didn’t want to go through that again, in any way shape or form. But honestly this David cunt was right. Either I agreed to this or I spent the rest of my life in the c_link_ on bread and water. I had not touched a bump in days and I was still suffering withdrawal and my whole body felt cold and I shivered from the prospect of jail. I made my decision.
“Fine I’ll agree to this shit. But I want details about what the fuck is involved in this experiment and I want them now!”
David stood up and reached into his trouser pocket and pulled out his smartphone and began reading me off the details.
“You will be taken from here to our facility where you will be prepped for the procedure. It involves intravenous injection of our experimental serum which should reduce the age of your body to somebody of around 9 years old. You will be under anesthetic while the procedure runs it’s course. You should retain all of your memories but I cannot promise you will retain all of them. It will weaken your emotional state and your physical body will lose your sex drive and all your hormonal changes from puberty. For all intents and purposes you will be a kid again. You will still have to deal with your withdrawal afterwards which may be difficult but help will be there should you need it” He stared at me hoping I would be partial to this.
“Then what? I get given to some fucking foster family to beat and shit on again? Grow up around the same shit I did the first time? Why bother wasting my fucking time! Besides people know my name now I’m a fucking murderer who the fuck would take in a fucking murderer?” I replied.
“you will not grow up around here at all. Once the procedure is complete you will be held at our facility here where upon 2 weeks of observation you will be transferred to the USA. Once there you will be given a new identity and placed with a family who will adopt you. Once you are there you will not reveal your old identity and you will become a new person, hopefully a better one. You will attend a school there and you will grow up otherwise normally”
The states? I had never been outside this same shitty city my entire life and now I was offered essentially an all expenses paid holiday to live with some yank family. I had been swayed if this was what was promised this might be good for me and I was curious.
“done but I have one small condition”
David looked at me intently.
“I want one of my fucking suits. I don’t want to be wearing this shit any longer and I want my fucking cigarrettes”
David nodded and produced forms for me to sign. I could read but not too well and I sure as shit couldn’t write well. Not going to school and running drugs isn’t exactly the best way to gain the ability to read and write. I scrawled my mark on the forms and looked up.
“when do we start?” I asked.
“Straight away, let’s go and get your suit”
It took about 20 minutes to get my stuff together. I felt a lot more comfortable wearing my own clothes than I did before. The car ride didn’t take long about half an hour or so. I was cuffed all the way there until we arrived at a plain office building. There were no outward markings or insignia. Just bland glass offices. I was moved from the car and taken into the building. A normal looking reception with typical pretty reception girls met me as I was lead through two security doors. I eventually found myself in a stylish bedroom. A nice en suite. A nice TV with satellite with all the sports channels good quality comfortable bed and stylish furniture. This was not what I had been expecting at all. I had expected the full lab experience with glass test tubes and microscopes nothing like what I had found. The door was locked but I had everything I needed in here.
I moved to the window and cracked it open. Evening was setting in now and the cold winter sun was slipping behind the cityscape. I lit up a cigarette and sat in relative peace. I was still withdrawing from the coke and it was hitting me hard. A pained mind drifts to tortured places under stress and that’s all I could think about. The path that had led me here and the life I had lived. I still considered it a good life considering the circumstances but only now here kept as a lab rat did I truly start to have regrets. I had never been in a relationship or known love. I had never had a first kiss I had never experienced school. All I had experiences was excess and fear, Christ I needed a bump I had got by in the prison before the trial by some of the contacts I had being able to sneak me some in but here I had nothing. I finished my cigarette and tossed it out of the window. I showered and lay down on the bed and drifted into an uneasy sleep.
I awoke at around 7am my head pounding from comedown and looked around. I had been hooked up to many computer or machines.
“What the fuck?” I exclaimed loudly.
I immediately noticed that it was David the man who met me in jail. He looked over to me reassuringly.
“Just taking some vitals from you now before the procedure. We are unsure if the narcotics in your system will interfere with the serum so we will be waiting until this evening to make sure you are clear, don’t worry for the life you have lived you are a very healthy man”
I relaxed somewhat and sat there but nothing but fear was running through my mind. This was really happening. Part of me marveled at the technology available I couldn’t even deny that these fucking eggheads had certainly been working hard to get to this stage. I had questions for David that I was scared to ask but I needed to know.
“How many people have gone through this so far?”
He answered briefly.
“ well the serum is still highly experimental but so far you are the 3rd person to undergo the change”
I was only the 3rd? I wanted this to put me at ease but it didn’t help at all.
“The third what happened to the other two? Will this hurt? I know I signed up to this shit but I don’t want a fucking death sentence!”
He chuckled softly.
“If you were awake for it then yes it would hurt. But as I mentioned you will be sedated. Also worry not the other two subjects are doing well they just didn’t regress as far as you are planned to”
At least I was somewhat clear here if other people had survived it. I laid back once again and rested. The machines kept bleeping and bleeping tearing at my head like daggers.
“ any chance of an aspirin or something? My head is fucking pounding over here” I asked hopefully.
“No can do I’m afraid you need to be clear of any outside drugs or narcotics so no smoking or anything else I’m afraid.”
“Fuck that! I need some now you have no idea what this is like! I need my smokes! I’m not lying in this fucking pit all day!”
“Sir if you keep resisting you will be restrained! I don’t want for this to come to that but if it has to I will.”
I moved to get up angrily which prompted David to call in his security gorillas. I was swiftly tied down to the bed with hidden restraints hidden underneath. I tried to thrash but the restraints were lock solid. You would have better luck keeping a politician out of a brothel than I had of breaking out of these.
“You fucking piece of shit I’ll fucking gut you I swear!”
“You are certainly going to have to control outbursts and language as bad as yours in your new life or you will find it very difficult indeed. I’ll leave the television on for you. Try not to struggle.” He flicked onto BT sports where a game of rugby was being played. I had always followed the rugby due to the high class clientele I dealt with and the bars I frequented playing it. I lay there and watched a few more games being played before I dozed off into an aching sleep. I awoke around 6PM the television was playing away to itself and I was surrounded by scientists with their IV equipment.
I was having second thoughts.
“Fuck this let me out! I’d rather be banged up. Let me fucking go you cunts!”
“You signed the contract try to relax”
A plunger connected to the needles in my arm was pushed and everything went dark.
I awoke in borderline agony. I struggled for a second to recall where I was. The surroundings were not familiar. I needed to get my bearings and surveyed the room. I couldn’t exactly recall how I got here but that was regular on my coke binges. I slowly came round remembering what came before. The evening had come I looked down at myself I was wearing nothing but a patient gown. The needles and IV equipment was gone replaced with beeping monitoring devices. The eggheads weren’t bullshitting I was tiny. I held my hands above my face they were tiny. I tried to sit up but when I put the weight on my hands they just buckled. Everything felt different to me now, bigger darker and somehow more terrifying. What the fuck had they done to me? I wanted to cry. I felt the tears welling up in my eyes. I had spent my life trying not to be afraid and now all of a sudden I was thrust into a new world of fear by fucking eggheads. I wept bitterly. Covering my eyes trying to shut out this hell I had been thrown into. I thought back to myself and decided that this was hell. I was being punished for what I had done in my life so far. I wished so hard that I had taken the jail time and died in there a decrepit old man. I wept and wept until I felt the vomit rising in my throat. I rolled to my right and puked all over the sheets, the floor and myself. I never wished for death more in my life.
Suddenly an unfamiliar voice filled the room.
“Oh honey what’s happened here? Are you ok?”
I sniffled and looked over to the voice. A friendly smiling face greeted me. It was that of a black woman in a smart nurse’s outfit. She slowly made her way over to me grabbing some towels that were placed on the sofa. She walked softly over to me and wiped me down and wiped my face. I just began sobbing again.
“Aw sweetie I know it’s bad now but it’s going to be alright? No need for all these tears.”
“Who are you?” I whimpered, startled at the sound of my new speaking voice.
“My name is Tara hon. I’m a nurse here and I’m here to help”
She gently rubbed my head and a feeling of comfort ran over me. I don’t think I had ever felt this before it definitely helped me in the state I was in. My crying reduced to small sniffles as I sat and experienced the only piece of human tenderness towards me in my life. I sat there for a while eyes closed feeling like shit and yet somehow feeling safer than I had all my life.
“Come now we need to get you and this mess cleaned up you can’t sit like this forever. Do you think you can walk?”
I shook my head gently. My whole body wracked with pain.
“Come on then”
She picked me up with ease. There was no weight to my now tiny _frame_. She carried me gently to the bathroom and gently removed the gown. Placing me gently in the bath I lay there naked as the day I was born as she turned on the taps. I didn’t even reach half way down this tub. I could not believe how small I had become. The water gently lapped my toes purifying me. Tara went into the bedroom to tidy up the mess I had made. I lay there feeling the warm water wash around me. This was the cleanest I had felt since that day in the cellar. Despite the withdrawal the pain and the nausea this was the closest I had been to bliss in a very long time.
Eventually Tara came back into the bathroom. Gently washed me down eventually hoisted me from the tub wrapped me in a towel and took me back to the bedroom. She sat me down on the bed still wrapped in the towel. It took me all my energy to stay sat up and not fall over. She moved over to a chest of drawers producing a small cotton T shirt, underwear, socks and a set of jeans. She came back to me unwrapped me from the towel and gently dressed me. I felt totally helpless but somewhat safe. Then it hit me. Did she know who I was and what I had done? I felt the need to admit to her what I was and what I had done. My heart was heavy.
“D…d…do you know who I am a…a…and what I did?” I meekly asked her.
She looked at me still beaming.
“I know who you were hon. but that doesn’t matter now. You have paid your debt by agreeing to test something that could help and save loads of people”
That statement hit me like a ton of bricks. Whatever this serum had done to me had totally changed me deep in my core. Not only did I feel remorse for my past life but I felt great relief at being told that it was in the past. Never once growing up did I ever feel remorse for anything I did. Any of the beatings I had given, the stabbings I had been involved in, the lives I had probably destroyed peddling drugs like I did and even the murder of a former friend. I felt absolutely nothing for these crimes they were a means to an end at the now all of a sudden they felt like a ton of bricks weighing on my shoulders.
“I…I…I’m a horrible person why are you helping me I don’t deserve this…” I gently said tears rolling down my cheeks. She pulled me into a gentle hug.
“Hey, hey hey, Shhhhh! It’s ok little man it’s all done now. I’ve read your file I don’t think you had a choice in much of your life did you? And everyone deserves a second chance”
This was the most I had cried in pretty much all my life. But the hug meant the world. I Sat there for a while crying into her shoulder with nothing but pain in my heart which was dying to get out. Eventually I stopped and she let me go. She carried me over to the sofa and sat me down.
“Now we need to discuss something important” she said pulling a ring binder folder across the coffee table.
“This folder contains your new identity and who will be now”
She slowly shuffled the paper and I stared at her intently genuinely curious at who I was going to be. My whole new world shining from those clean white pages.
“your new name is Jamie Thompson you were born in 2011 your birthday is the 3rd of December you are 9 and your parents were killed in a car accident their names were Anthony and Gemma you will be placed with a family in the US in 2 weeks time. The family has already agreed to take you in. Their names are Tom and Sylvia and they a 9 year old son Oliver. You are not to tell these people of your past any leak of this information will result in you being brought back here and kept here until you reach adulthood. Do you understand what I have told you?”
This was a lot to take in. I had assumed I would at least keep my first name but I guess it was too risky. I was surprised that Applied Sciences had placed me with a family with a kid already. They knew what I had done and what I was capable of. I was surprised that they were ready to expose someone so young to someone like me.
“I’m Jamie now? And I’m going to have a step brother? Jesus Christ that’s a lot to take in Tara how the fuck am I going to blend in and keep these secrets from them? What if I grow up to look like… myself my face is everywhere over here It’s in all the papers what if they eventually learn who I am? It would all have been for nothing!” I squeaked restlessly filled with worry.
“If I ever needed a smoke in my life it sure as shit is now!” I stressed weakly reaching for my cigarettes. She stood up towering over me smacking the cigarettes from my hand.
“Jamie!” she said with a raised voice.
“You are 9 years old now kids your age don’t smoke or swear”
I jumped my hand back to me. Man that stung.
“Well I sure as fuck did when I was 9 ladies”
She scowled at me.
“the past is the past now. You have been given a massive opportunity to make a better person of yourself here it would be a crying shame to throw it all away by being stupid!”
I dropped my head knowing in my heart that she was right.
“sorry” I said.
“That’s ok I know this is a lot to take in and it will take time to adjust. Come on you look a little fresher now let’s see if we can walk to the canteen and get you some food. You are a growing boy after all”
She took my hand and helped me uneasily to my feet and trotted me to the door. She swiped her cardkey and the door popped open. We walked down the corridor that lead me here and I was taken to a canteen where around 15 people spread out in groups around 10 tables or so. As soon as I entered the room all eyes seemed to be on me. She bought me some chicken nuggets French fries and a bowl of ice cream with a pint of pepsi to wash it all down. I quicky ignored the 15 eyes drilling holes in the back of my head and set about inhaling this banquet before me. It all tasted superb. My sense of taste and smell before was pretty much fucked due to my excessive coke use and all of a sudden smells and flavors were ecstasy for me. Me and Tara talked a while over the food about nothing important really. She spoke of her family and i told her often tearfully a few things about my past. Shit I wouldn’t tell my closest ‘friends’ before. Once I was done she led me back to my room where I fell into a deep blissful sleep. I almost didn’t notice the withdrawal or my brain screaming for nicotine that night. This was easily the closest I had been to being happy in a long long time.
I woke the next morning aching less than the one previously. I stirred slowly leaning back on my hands as I got up. The room was filled with the dim light of the early morning. Today was Monday so nothing good would be on the sports channels and I honestly didn’t know what to do with myself. I decided to go take care of my morning business slowly making my way to the bathroom. It was a strange sensation having to jump to climb on the throne but I managed anyways. I sat still a little groggy looking to my right. I noticed my face in the mirror, well the top of my head and my eyes anyways. They seem to have cut my hair which was shortish and ear length. I liked It how it was myself a little longer so I could _style_ it. I finished sorted myself out and stood up. I surveyed myself in the mirror. It was certainly me but this face had not looked back at me in a long time. Button nose, green eyes dimple in my chin mousey brown hair and thin lips. I was unsure I liked that I saw. I mean all it reminded of was how I looked in the mirror after that day. I needed gel and I needed it now.
I walked slowly into the bedroom finding a small pack of cornflakes and a bowl of milk had been left for me. I poured them and slowly sat down flicking the TV on. I usually watched the news or some documentaries in the mornings. Despite my wild life_style_ I liked my mornings to be clean and feel as if I had learned something during breakfast. But strangely on this day it did nothing for me. I cluelessly flicked through the channels eventually stumbling upon cartoon network. I cartoon with a boy in a bear hat with a dog was on. I never watched this bollocks as a kid because I honestly never had chance to. It drew me in entirely. It was colourful and it kept my attention. I munched my way through the cereal and once finished looked for my clothes. The same jeans and T shirt from yesterday sat on the sofa. These would not do either. I obviously could not fit into my own clothes but after what I had done for these people the least I could do was get a set of good clothes out of it.
As my breakfast set In and the clock turned 9 I felt full of energy. I wanted to run and I wanted to play. The eggheads said that I would regress emotionally but I didn’t generally believe it would happen. I looked at the other sofa maybe 3 feet from where I was. I wondered if I could jump between them and tried it. I made the jump just and giggled to myself. I did that for ages eventually ending up in huge belly laughs jumping around the room. Eventually the door opened and a familiar face greeted me.
“morning Jamie! I see you are full of energy but you shouldn’t jump on the furniture it’s bad manners”
I stopped my fun and sat down still not used to my new name.
“I want new clothes and I want hair gel” I said in an almost pout looking at my bare feet.
she frowned and looked at me sternly
“hmm well young man if you ask like that you won’t get anything! You need to learn some manners if you are going to be a good boy!”
I huffed looking back at me feet and back to her.
“ok please may I have some gel and please may I have some nicer clothes?”
She smiled gently. And shuffled some papers she held in her hands.
“maybe later little man but first we have some basic tests for you to do. We need to get a reading of your literacy and mathematical ability if you do these and try your best we can see about sorting you some nicer clothes and maybe another treat”
I pouted. I didn’t want to do stupid fucking tests. I don’t think I had ever done any in my life. But I wanted those clothes and that gel. And I really wanted to know what that treat was. Maybe they were going to take me outside or something. Even though it was cold as hell out there I had the undeniable urge to go outside and run around like a lunatic.
“ok I’ll do these stupid tests…”
“excellent!” she beamed and set them in front of me complete with a half pencil.
I found the English hard but the maths was piss easy. I had been doing maths all my life lots of counting and weighing had been involved in my former life. The other was some science test which was hit and miss. This whole load of bollocks took about 2 hours to complete and when I was done I felt proud.
“finished!” I chirped.
She gathered the papers up and shuffled them. Having a brief look and putting them in her folder.
“okay hon we need to get these marked and then we can see about getting those clothes you asked nicely for. But for now I have something else for you.”
She produced a box with a PS4 inside it. I looked at it confused I had never played one of these things in my life. I had no idea what to do with it.
“Tara I have no idea what to do with this fuckin’ thing. I grew up on the streets I never got a chance to play one of these”
She looked at me with a look of disappointment.
“this is a very expensive gift I organized for you here to keep you occupied I thought you’d be more greatful also language Jaimie!”
I immediately felt ashamed. It was a nice gift. I thought maybe I should fein liking it just so I wouldn’t seem ungreatful. I felt like a true piece of shit. I looked down at my feet in shame.
“I’m sorry I’ll try it I don’t want to seem ungreatful. You are the only person who has ever really been nice to me for something that isn’t drugs or money I don’t want to upset you”
I brushed away a few stray tears as I sat down next to the box and tried to open the box trying my best not to well up again. I tried the packaging. These emotional outbursts just kept coming and coming. This was a top gift and all I could do was be a shithead about it. I kept trying to hold back tears but failing. She moved over to me crouched down and pulled me into another hug.
“ I know you didn’t mean it. It’s alright I know how hard this must be for you right now. You will have to stay inside here for quite a bit while we monitor you and I didn’t want you to be bored in here”
I stopped my blubbering and she wiped my tears. She looked down into me. I still felt small and scared.
“I shouldn’t be this pathetic” I whimpered.
“ Don’t worry about it hon” she said softly wiping away another stray tear.
“you are a cutie, you will be a handsome boy some day you will be fighting away the ladies with a stick one day”
I thought to myself for a second and marveled at that comment. I used to be a handsome guy I used to have loads of booty calls but no real relationships in my life. She wasn’t wrong it was just a strange thought to think considering my predicament.
“enough tears anyway let’s get this set up”
And so we did. We set the system up and had a laugh with some of the long wires included. It was quite enjoyable. I had a few games for it including a couple of car driving games and some colorful platformers. Nothing violent which I suppose considering that I was a convicted murderer and drug dealer was not a surprise.
I played that fucking thing for hours in that room. The days passed quicker and quicker. The less shit I felt the more energy I gained. Some time each day was spent with tara hammering manners and whatnot into me. I hardly had much experience before. Even the high class clientele I dealt with never learned me much elocution. Well how much can you pick up when you sell posh cunts snort.
A week had eventually passed before I knew it. My wanderlust grew and I still hadn’t been brought any smart clothes, just more shitty cheap kids clothing. I formed a plan in my head on how I could break out of here. I would have to be sneaky about it though. Two scientists were in my room the evening before my great escape monitoring me I got up from the sofa and pretended to walk to the bathroom. I swiped one of the keycards from the scientist as I walked past. The eventually left the other scientist swiping the door. The other clueless bastard didn’t even know. I hid the card in the toilet cistern overnight so if they found out and shook my room down they wouldn’t find it.
I struggled to sleep that night due to the excitement of maybe getting to go outside for a change. I had eaten in the same canteen and sat in the same room all day for over a week and for my new younger _frame_ this was unbearable. I hoped I would taste the fresh air again tomorrow even if it was cold and frosty.
I awoke the next morning and looked out of the window. It was still very dark out. I flicked on the TV and the clock on the news channel said 6:15. I knew if I was going to get out of here this would be the time. I swiped the door quickly ducking my way through the corridors towards the exit. I saw the man door where I came in and surveyed the foyer. There was one security guard on duty but he was reading his paper.
I swiped the door gently opening it and moving my way towards the doors. I got to the front doors before hearing a lout ‘HEY!’ behind me.
At that point I just ran. I ran my arse off straight out of those doors and I kept going. I looked back and noticed that the guard hadn’t kept. Good job he was fat I thought to myself. I stopped and sat down. My legs hadn’t hurt this much in years. I knew where I was I had a lockup with some money and supplies in case of an emergency about a mile from here. I also noticed that I was bitterly cold and shivering. I was only wearing my shitty cheap clothes the eggheads had given me. I walked and walked the sun eventually turning the sky a ligh grey colour. It was truly a shit day overcast and cold chances of snow predicted too. I trotted down those streets shitting myself inside out that any moment a car full of scientists or worse yet the police would pull over. I thought that every driving car was danger all the way there. Luckily none of them stopped which in itself showed the shit state of society that nobody would pull over and help a shivering 9 year old.
I eventually got to my lockup entered the building and found my cubicle. It was lovely and warm in here. I looked up at the keypad. I couldn’t fucking reach it. I found a janitors mop bucket quickly overturning it stepping up and keying in my code. The door clicked open and I went inside. I rummaged among the boxes I had left in there finding 2 grand in cash an old Iphone I had left there and some of my spare clothes. They were enormous on me but I wrapped a smart winter jacket around myself anyway. First thing on my mind was getting my hair sorted and getting some nice clothes. I had no idea where I could find any that would fit my tiny _frame_. I decided I would stay here for a couple of hours until the shops opened so I plugged the phone in and played on it for a while. I had installed angry birds for shits and giggles when this phone was actually good and never played it. Then I remembered something I had stored here long ago. Under a rag was that same green BMX fro when I was a youth. I never had the heart to throw it away despite the memories attached to it. Right now though it entertained the shit out of me and before long I found that the time had indeed passed. I slipped out of the cubicle and shut the door the keypad bleeping to tell me it had closed. I made my way into town this huge coat dragging behind me with my lime green BMX wheeling by my side.
I approached a shop advertising suits and smart clothes for young men. I trotted my way up to the counter and spoke to the woman serving. She was an older lady grey hair and glasses a bit plump. I felt shy something I hadn’t ever remembered feeling even as a kid.
“Excuse me could i get fitted for a jacket and trousers please” i piped up at her my lessons in manners apparently sinking in.
“Hello there young man! of course you can but where are your parents?”
“erm they are next door they sent me in here they will be along shortly” I meekly responded.
It must have not been a very convincing lie because she immediately got from behind her counter stepping round onto me causing me to take a few steps back.
“are you alright lad? Are you sure you aren’t lost or anything? You are awfully little for them to be sending you in here on your own”
I stepped back towards the door and ran out i didn’t consider it worth the arseache of getting captured and made to sit in that fucking cage of a room again for some clothes anymore. There were more shops i could try. But many attempts fielded much of the same. Eventually i had to settle for some shirts i managed to buy on the self service counter at a large chain store and some school uniform trousers. I still looked shit but less shit and the wool coat i bought myself was definitely warmer and better looking on me that my old massive coat. I bought myself a satchel to hold my money in too as i felt it was better than keeping rolls of bills in my pocket. I also manage to get my hair _style_d to look somewhat better than it did before.
I knew they were probably out in force looking for me by now and i had hardly been discreet in the places i had visited. I decided to make my way back to my lockup as there was something else there
I remembered I had. I made propped myself up with the mop bucket and let myself back in. I rummaged around in another box and found what I was looking for. I held up a white package to my face. This was a key of coke I had stashed for a rainy day. I still craved this drug and anybody who has or is an addict will always say there is never a cure for addiction Just times when you are using or not.
I looked at it in my hands. It had been ages since I had touched this shit and I melded it around my head eventually putting it back down. Deciding I didn’t want to touch this shit again. This was a massive breakthrough for me.
“who the fuck are you?” a voice startled me from behind.
Three boys about 13 all stood there in hoodies one was holding my bike one of them was holding a blade and the other was just stood there. I recognised them they were 3 runner boys i had used many times before they had the code to this lockup and used to run for me. They were thieving horrible little shits just like i had been. I was terrified to the bone. Stumbling back against the wall.
“erm.. I..i..i’m Jamie i’ve been running for a little while now and i was told to come here”
The boys laughed and started to move closer to me. I backed into the corner letting out a terrified whimper.
“nah fam, You ain’t been told to do shit. Nobody been told to come, here dude who runs this lockup gone to jail. You fucking dead”
They lunged forward kicking and punching me against the wall. After a brief struggle i managed to break free and ran from the locker tripping over the bucket as i went. For the second time in that day i ran for dear god. Only this time these boys were faster. The chase went over gardens and yards for about 40 mins before they gave up. They must have decided what was in the lockup was worth more than me. I still had my money satchel and my phone but my clothes and my haircut were all messed up. My face was bruised so were my ribs i also had a split lip and a nasty lump on my head. I came to a public footpath i knew from when i was a kid. I remembered back to my early days and i knew where it led. It was not somewhere i wanted to go anymore.
I was not a man anymore. I couldn’t get my own way now. I would have to scrounge again dodging cops and living in fear again. My little mind couldn’t handle it and broke down. All i could think about was Tara and how kind she was to me. I had let her down because of my stupid insecurities and vanities. All i wanted was a hug right now. Someone to protect and care for me. It was then i realised that it was okay to be frightened as long as someone was there to protect you. I thought of the potential life i had in America and how it could be a fresh start for me. For the first time in my life i did not want to be here anymore. I did not want to be a gangster anymore because i had other options.
I made my decision. I was going to make my way back to the office building. I knew where it was so i slowly started my walk back the sun slowly setting on my back. My face hurting from my beating i wept all the way back to that building hoping for a second chance all the while with visions of being held prisoner forever with no love and with no companionship.
I eventually walked through the doors a sobbing snotty mess. I collapsed into a help pulling my knees up to my face. I cried full force bitterly into myself not even able to say a word to the security guard. I pulled the security pass i had stolen and tossed it onto the floor in front of me.
I heard the security door open and two sets of footsteps approach me. I opened my crying eyes and looked up at the two figures towering over me. It was David and Tara. Both of them looked absolutely furious. I was roughly forced to my feet by my arm and taken through the security door. Crying all the way.