Burglar

Rex is a burglar who rob people's houses and sell items to antique shop. He has a girlfriend who is on benefits so he helps her out with the money. The girl has a child from another man who is a drug addict and he always pesters her for money.

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2. Chapter Two

“Who will give a damn, I killed a burglar defending myself and my home,” the man said, now walking towards Rex. 

As Rex was standing near the door, there was a windowsill behind him.  Upon that windowsill was a large vase of flowers.  Rex quickly grabbed the vase and threw it and the water and flowers into the mans face.  That gave Rex a valuable few seconds to run out of the house, into his car and drive off.  There was one thing that he learnt that night, and that was that he needed a weapon to protect himself.  And the best weapon would be a gun.

When he got home he could see that there were no lights on, so he assumed everyone was asleep.  He climbed the stairs up to his bedroom.  He sat down on his bed in the dark and took his shoes off.  It was then that he smelt shit.  He had obviously walked into some of Ronnie’s deposits and trampled it through the house and into his bedroom.  When he turned the light on he saw a brown trail across the bedroom leading from the door.  He could have murdered Ronnie at that moment in time.  His mum kept a plastic bucket and cloth in the bathroom for just such emergencies.  He went into the bathroom and filled the bucket with hot water from the bath tap and poured some bleach in as well as throwing in the cloth.  He located the original pile of cat faeces in the hall and retraced his steps from there.  It took one hour from the time he first got home until going to bed.  As he lay in bed, prior to falling asleep, he thought about how he would get a gun.  Did Jim Franks still hangout in the Bulls Head?  That is where he would go tomorrow night.

 

Jim Franks lived on his own and had everything that he needed for a happy life.  If he wanted food then he would go to a restaurant.  If he needed sex then he would go to a brothel.  He didn’t work in a conventional way, the nine to five; he sold weapons, especially guns.

As he sat in the Bulls Head drinking his pint, he was thinking about visiting his supplier to purchase some more guns.  He didn’t notice that Rex had entered the pub.  Rex saw him and sat at the bar next to him.

“Hello Jim.”

“Oh, hello Rex.  I haven’t seen you in ages.  How’s breaking and entering?”

“Dangerous.  I want to buy a gun from you,” he said.

“What do you have in mind?  Big, small, powerful, you name it?” said Jim.

“A revolver, powerful with bullets.”

“I’ve got just the thing.  A Korth Combat Stainless revolver.  Calibre, 357 Magnum.  Trigger action, double action.  Magazine capacity, 6 rounds.  Weight, 950 grams.  Length, 208 mm.  And for you a special price of five hundred quid.  You get a box of 20 bullets with it.”

“I’ll take it.  When can I have it?”

“Here. Same time, tomorrow night.  Bring the money.”

Rex didn’t bother ordering a drink; he had done what he came for and so left.

He didn’t do a burglary that night.  He slept instead.  He knew that if he was caught by the police carrying a gun then he would be in more trouble than just a simple burglary.  But last night had shown him that he needed protection.

 

The sun came up at five o’clock that morning, creeping like a thief through the windows and curtains into the bedroom of Edgar Blenkensop.  He was lying in bed, awake and thinking about getting up.  There was movement at the bottom of his double bed.  It was Satan his Doberman pinscher. 

Edgar Blenkensop, 78 and fit for his age, lived with his brother Eddie in a large mansion called Fleece House.  Satan belonged to Edgar and had freedom of the entire house.  Every door in the house was never closed; this enabled Satan to access any room.  And as for patrolling outside, well, there was a dog flap in the kitchen door.  As Edgar slept, Satan would leave the comfort of the bed and wander around the house and grounds at frequent intervals.  He wasn’t a pet, he was a working dog, and if anyone showed him kindness he would snarl at them.

Edgar got up then and washed in the bathroom across the corridor.  Then he got dressed and went down for breakfast in the kitchen.  The kitchen was big, with worktops and appliances on three sides and the remaining side just whitewashed wall.   A large wooden table dominated the centre.  As he expected,  Maria Samosa was there fixing coffee.  She was 39 and had come to England from Malta ten years ago.  She had worked as housekeeper come unqualified nurse for six years.  She occupied a one bedroom flat above the garage on the east wing.

“What want for breakfast, Edgar?” she asked.

“Two eggs on toast please, Maria.”

“What way d’you want?”

“Poached please.” 

He sat at the six seat table and poured himself a cup of coffee that Maria had made earlier.  He like her coffee, she always made it fresh and strong.  Just then Edgar’s brother came into the kitchen. 

“Good morning Edgar, Maria,” he said walking in and wheezing at the same time.  He sat at the table, opposite his brother.  Edgar and Maria said good morning to him in unplanned unison as he got out his plastic nebulizer and breathed in two puffs.

“What want for breakfast, Eddie?” she said.

“What is my brother having?”

“Poached eggs on toast,” said Edgar, beating Maria to the answer.  He was hidden behind a broadsheet newspaper that was delivered to the gate early and Maria collected it each morning.  She took the poached eggs out of the pan of hot water and now with a little time to spare for herself she sipped at her mug of coffee.

“That flood Asia is terrible, Edgar?” she said, watching the toast.

“They’re always having floods over there,” he said, as though Asia was just across the garden. 

Eddie poured himself a coffee.  As the smell of poached eggs filled the kitchen and beyond, a regular guest turned up.  It was Satan.  He sat at the end of the table and looked at both of them with pleading black eyes.  His alertness intensified as Maria brought their breakfasts to the table.  Edgar put his paper down and tearing off a piece of buttered toast from his plate, he gave it to Satan.  The toast was accepted slowly and gently from Satan who devoured it equally slowly.

“Don’t forget to feed Satan, Maria,” said Edgar.

“I will”

Satan was fed once a day by Maria.  He had a large dog bowl in which was put a tin of dog food, biscuits and cooked meat which alternated from day to day.  Today it was chicken.

After finishing his breakfast, Edgar sat there for half an hour reading his paper, while Eddie went to his room.  They had turned one of the studies downstairs into a nice bedroom for him.  In his condition he couldn’t manage the stairs.

Maria washed up and cleaned the kitchen before performing her household duties.  Edgar put his paper down and put on his wellingtons.  He went out into the garden. 

It was a beautiful summer morning as Eddie walked out of the front door and on to the terrace.  The terrace was raised ten feet above the rest of the garden and went round the whole house.  As Eddie stood there on the terrace he looked left and saw, a hundred yards away, the steps leading down from the terrace to the garden.  And to his right was the old wooden bench and little round table that he knew so well.  He went over and sat on the bench.  The bird song, warm air with not one cloud in the blue sky,  made him feel glad to be alive.  In the near distance, he saw Edgar pushing a wheelbarrow full of plants ready to be planted.  A few years ago he would have helped his brother planting them, but now he couldn’t walk ten feet without getting out of breath.

Every morning, about the same time, Maria would use this time when Eddie was sat outside, to clean his room and make his bed.  If it was raining or snowing, he would sit in the library. 

“Eddie, you like cup tea or something?” she said, poking her head out the doorway.  He knew she had finished doing his room.

“That’s very kind of you Maria, thank you.  Yes, I’ll have a cup of tea.”

When Maria had gone, Satan appeared at the far end of the terrace.  Eddie called him, but he ignored the calls and walked the little way to the steps.  He was watching Edgar amongst the shrubs.  Typical guard dog, thought Eddie, why can’t we have a pet dog so I can lavish it with attention and love.  Ten years ago they had Bonnie, a white Labrador.  He died three years ago.  They had Satan two years ago.  Bonnie was such an affectionate pet, and both brothers loved him deeply.  When he died, it was Edgar who didn’t want another dog.  Then they got broken into and Edgar decided to get a guard dog.  So they had Satan.

 

The following night Rex got the revolver.  He loaded it and put it in the bag along with the rest of his burglary tools.  As it was only late afternoon, he decided he would visit his girlfriend Tina.  So he drove towards the housing estate where she lived in a tower block, the third floor.

As usual the lift was out of order so he took the stairs.  Even before he knocked on her door he could hear little Steven screaming his head off inside.

“Who is it?” she called, after he had knocked.

“Rex.”

She opened the door.  He was hit almost immediately by a powerful smell of faeces.  She was half way through changing Steven’s nappy on the sofa.

“Nice of you to drop by.  Can you fix us a cup of coffee?” she said, nodding towards the tiny kitchen.

Tina was twenty and she’d had Steven when she was seventeen.  The father, Shawn, was a no good drug addict and had soon abandoned her when she had Steven.  But he was the doting father just recently, ever since Tina had given him fifty pounds.  Now he came around frequently, pretending he was there for Steven, but always asking for money when he did.

“Does my hair look a mess?” she shouted from the living room.

Rex was in the kitchen fixing coffee.  “I didn’t notice,” he shouted back.  She had long blond hair, dyed of course.  Tina must have finished changing Steven because he was now standing in the kitchen doorway watching him.  Tina was sat on the sofa when Rex brought out the coffee.  He gave it her.

“Go and get that cake you saw on the top.  There’s a knife in the drawer,” she said.  Rex got the cake and knife and put it on the coffee table in front of Tina.

“Do you need any money?” he asked.  He stood at the window with the coffee in his hand, looking out over the estate.

“You know I can always do with some money.”  She was living on benefits.  “I know how you get your money, Rex, you burgle houses.”

Rex put his coffee on the window sill and took out his wallet.  He counted out one hundred pounds and gave it to her.  “Don’t give any of it to that waster Shawn, d’you hear me?  I’ve got a big job coming up, Fleece House, out of town.”

“Of course I won’t give any to Shawn.  Fleece House heh.”

“Talk of the devil and he will appear,” Rex said.  He was looking through the window and down at the front of the block of flats.

“What d’you mean?”

“I can see Shawn coming down the road now.  Typical, when there is money about, he appears.”

“D’you want to go?”

“No.  I’ll stay.  I’m not running from anybody.”

“But you know he doesn’t like you,” she said.

“That’s just too bad.”

They never said a word as they waited for Shawn.  Then came the inevitable knock on the door.  Tina let him in.  The look he gave Rex when seeing him was one of disgust and hate, though it was obvious that he was trying to hide his feelings.  He sat down on the only easy chair in the room and eyed Tina’s coffee.  Steven was playing by the kitchen doorway with some toy cars.  As if he’d just realised what he was there for, he looked at Steven.

“Hello, Steve.  How are you little mate?”

The little boy just ignored him and carried on playing.

“He’s been doing fine,” said Tina.

“How about a coffee?” he said

“You can fix it yourself, can’t you?” said Rex.

Shawn pulled a face and got up and went into the kitchen, carefully stepping over Steven as he went.  “Where’s the sugar?” he soon called.

“You know where it is,” said Tina.

“There’s none left,” he called back.

Tina sighed in frustration and went to help him.

“What’s he doing here?” said Shawn softly, now they were alone in the kitchen.

“You know he’s my boyfriend and he can come when he wants.”

Unbeknown to Rex and Tina, Shawn could see some rolled up twenty pound notes sticking up from Tina’s jeans pocket.  He grabbed them and counted a hundred.

“Where‘d you get this from then?”

“Give me it back,” shouted Tina. 

Rex heard and came in.  He saw Shawn standing there with the twenties in his hand.

“Is that the money I gave you?” he asked Tina.

“Yes.  And I want it back.”

“I just wanted you to see that it was poking out of your pocket.  You could have lost it woman,” said Shawn.  He gave the money back to her.

She put it in her pocket, this time shoving it down really hard.  He stirred his coffee and went back to the easy chair in the living room.

“Can I have some cake, mum?” asked Steven.  He had quickly realised that there was cake to be had, and was leaning on the coffee table. 

Within Shawn’s reach, he scooped him up and playfully bounced him on his knee.  “How are you little fella?”

Steven began to cry as he had been taken away from the cake.

“Oh, fuck off then,” said Shawn peeved.  He shoved him away.  The little boy went back to the cake, waiting patiently for his mum to cut him a slice.

“Hey,” snapped Tina, “We don’t use that language in front of Steven.”

“Whatever,” replied Shawn, now disinterested in it all.

“Nice father you are,” said Rex quietly.

“You mind your own business,” said Shawn, hearing him.

“What are you here for anyway?  You haven’t asked her for money yet,” said Rex, tiring of his company.

“D’you think I don’t know what you’re here for.  You only want to get inside her knickers.  Giving it the big daddy I am, you’re pathetic.”

Tina could see where this was heading and so decided to come between them.  “Look, if you want the truth, both of you aren’t perfect.  There’s you and your drugs and you the thief.”

“Look, give me some money and I’m out of here,” said Shawn.  They both noticed the desperation in his voice.

“Don’t you dare,” said Rex.

It was then that Shawn grabbed Steven and the cake knife and held it against his throat.  “Give me that money you’ve got in your pocket or I’ll kill him,” shouted Shawn.  He stood up, holding Steven against his feet, the knife pressed against his throat.  “I mean it, Tina, I’ll kill him.”

Tina burst into tears.  “Please don’t Shawn, I’ll give you the money, just don’t harm him.”

“You’re not giving him any money,” said Rex, determined.

Shawn backed away to the door, Steven still in his grip.

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