Kay lives on the streets, addicted and broken, she gave up on doing anything with her life years ago. Until she meets a stranger, a stranger called Harry, who is the first person to look inside.
(contains swearing and drug use)


2. Caught

I'm awoken by a sharp pain in my back, something hitting it hard with a thwack. Blinking, I open my eyes to another crack on my spine and yelp at the pain, seeing an elderly man standing over me. "Move it, tramp," he croaks, raising his walking stick once more. The cat swiftly jumps off me as I jerk up, grab my bedding and stand up, backing slowly away from him. My back still stings and it's all I can do not to burst into tears, it hurts so much.

"God, they think they can do what they want," the man mutters, under the impression I can't hear him and beginning to ease himself onto my bench.

"Fuck you!" I call, raising my middle finger at him, before walking over the tree where my things are stashed. I grab my rucksack, pulling it back out and shoving my blankets inside. My hands trembles as I take it out, something I'm used to after not taking a hit for a while. Casting one last glance at the man, I follow the signs to the public toilets, my walking still a little unsteady from sleep. No-one ever comes into them, they're far too disgusting for anyone who isn't desperate to step foot inside them. I brush my teeth, splash my face with dirty water from the tap and wash my armpits, which covers up the smell a little. Something rustles in my pocket as I straighten my jeans. Sticking my hand inside, it comes out with a handful of ten pound notes. "God," I mutter, realising that the guy from last night must've put them there, Harry. With a shrug, I zip them up in my rucksack and continue making myself presentable, until I don't look like I've spent the last six months on the streets. Maybe just the last three.

Stepping into one of the stalls, I scrabble around in my bag until I find the small parcel at the bottom. Carefully, I tip the fine white powder from the cling-film into a thin line on the back of my hand, which shakes a little. I lean down and sniff it up my nose, wrinkling it a little at the unpleasant sensation, which I've never been able to get used to, but continue until it is all gone. The toilet gurgles in protest as I drop the wrapping inside inside then flush it, before stuffing everything back into my bag and walking out of the dim room. Within ten minutes of walking my hands have stopped shaking, and the thoughts are already beginning to be shoved to a deep little corner in the back of my head.

My rucksack is stowed back in the tree, the few essentials I need stuffed in my pockets, and I walk to the high street. All the shoppers come here; each entering shops chattering excitedly, then emerging with large bags stuffed with clothes, CDs and anything else they could want.

Attempting to look wealthy, I stroll inside a clothes shop and walk around for a short period of time, as if I am browsing. Then my hand darts out and grabs a woolly hat off a stand, my jacket bulging a little as I stuff it underneath and pull it over. I glance around, though no-one appears to have noticed, and continue on my way. I'd learnt from experience to only take one thing from each shop, or you look too suspicious.

I avoid the gaze of the security guard as I walk towards the automatic doors, heart racing as his eyes follow me. My pulse is loud in my ears as I speed up my walk. The air outside is within reach, cool and beckoning, and just as I'm nearly through the door, a firm hand is placed on my shoulder. 

"Excuse me, miss, but I you to open up your jacket," he says, voice gruff.

Staring up at him, I manage a small smile. "Why? I haven't done anything wrong."

"Just open it up, and I'll let you on your way."

My hands shake as I reach up, as if to pull it to the side, but with a quick kick in his shins I shove the doors open and sprint through. The street outside is crowded and busy, but I push through the masses of people, hat now clutched in my hand. With a quick glance behind me I see the guard chasing after me, clearly faster. My heart races as the chase begins.

Just as I'm about to round a corner, hopefully to less busy streets where I can outrun him, something catches under my foot and I fly forwards, hat flying out of my grasp and onto the pavement a few feet in front of my face, which collides with the ground hard. My nose smashes into the pavement and I can feel pain throbbing through it, while warm blood trickles down my lip and into my mouth. I know that there's no escape now. Broad hands roughly grab my shoulders and pull me up, taking the hat and marching me back to the shop, my face sullen, blood still pumping from my broken nose.

He pushes through the small groups of people looking at clothes, taking me to an empty area with a few chairs. I'm told to sit down, as he stands in front of me, arms folded.

"Now," he begins. "Don't try and deny what you did, it just wastes both of our time. I 'ain't seen you here before, I won't take this to the police. You can just pay for it."

Doing my best to fake nonchalance, I stretch my legs out and chew some imaginary gum. "And if I don't?"

"Then I'll take you down to the station."

My heart hammers in my head as I pat down my pockets, searching for any money left in there. But I'd left it all in the rucksack. Desperately, I look at him helplessly. "I don't have any on me, but I can go get some, it's not far, I can go and get it from my, um, house." My mind scrabbles for excuses, knowing that he won't believe me, but still determined to get out of this.

"Yeah, right. I'm not an idiot, darling. Let's go, it's only round the corner." I glance towards the door, wondering if I could make it in time. "If you make another run for it, you'll just be making things worse for yourself."

With a drop of my heart, I slowly stand up and let him take my arm, stunned that I'd managed to let this happen.

"Kay?" A stunned voice comes from behind me.

I turn, seeing Harry, that guy from last night, staring open-mouthed at me, who had somehow remembered my name.

"Um," I say, stumbling as the guard begins pulling me away.

With a quick glance around, he quickly walks over to the guard, saying," What did she do?"

He sighs dramatically and turns to him. "She stole something, so if you're intending on doing the same, I'd recommend leaving now."

Harry glances at me, eyebrows high, before rifling through his pockets. "Listen, I'l pay for whatever she nicked. I know her, she's a friend." Silently, the guard holds his hand out as Harry presses a twenty pound note into it, smiling confidently. "Keep the change."

"Get out of here, and if I catch you here again, I'll take you to the police even if you're friends with Michael Jackson," the guard says, pocketing the money and glaring at me as Harry takes my arm and tugs me out of the store, pushing through a crowd of girls pointing and chattering at him.


Hope you liked it :) Can't believe I have 4 likes, but I'm gonna try and get to ten soon. And I got another fan! XD You guys are amazing xx

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